Tag Archives: bob

Grateful Dead Documentary ‘Long Strange Trip’ Premiering at Sundance Before Amazon Prime Release

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Martin Scorsese agreed to serve as producer for an official Grateful Dead documentary back in October 2014. The Dead’s 50th anniversary was coming up the following year, and filmmakers wanted to have the project ready for the celebration. Unfortunately that didn’t happen, and the landmark event was ultimately celebrated with a massive 3-day concert over the 4th of July weekend in Chicago’s Soldier Field. Original members Bob Weir, Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, and Phil Lesh reunited on-stage for the event, which proved a huge success, despite the absence of Jerry Garcia, who died in 1995. Now, however, the 6-part documentary, appropriately titled Long Strange Trip from director Amir Bar-Lev (The Tillman Story, Happy Valley), is set to premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival before being released on Amazon Prime this May. Continue reading

New J.R.R. Tolkien Biopic Lands ‘Downton Abbey’ Director James Strong

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The Lord of the Rings has already spawned two epic film trilogies, the first in the form of Tolkien’s classic novels, and the second an extended adaptation of his first journey in Middle Earth, The Hobbit. That’s without mentioning all of the affiliated material that takes place within his mystical world, from the original novels to the chronology of The Silmarillion, to Tolkien’s own languages that he created for the many inhabitants of Middle Earth. As well known as The Lord of the Rings is to pretty much everyone these days, very few people can tell you anything about its author, John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (J.R.R. Tolkien). That story, however, will soon come to light in the form of a new biopic surrounding Tolkien’s life, appropriately titled Middle Earth. Continue reading

This Week In Film History…

On September 6, 1967, a documentary titled Don’t Look Back opened at an old ramshackle theater in San Francisco. It was hard to imagine why this old pornographic movie theater had a line of people extending out the door and around the corner, but once you found out it was about Bob Dylan, it was no surprise at all. The September 6th release was the first large-scale screening of the film that documented Bob Dylan and company’s whirlwind 1965 European tour. Joining him on tour were the likes of artists like Joan Baez, Donovan, and Allen Ginsberg, along with the standard parade of press, crew, police, fans, and everything else that came to epitomize Rock n’ Roll in the 1960s.

Bob Dylan, in particular, was an iconic figure in his own right. He had risen to fame in the early-60’s folk scene in New York City’s Greenwich Village, developing his own songwriting skills and capturing fans around the world with songs like Blowin’ in the Wind, A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall, and The Times They Are A-Changin,’ his so-called early “protest era” catalogue. Continue reading

Memorable Movie Moments…

This week’s Memorable Movie Moment takes us back to 1962 and director Robert Mulligan‘s big screen adaptation of author Harper Lee‘s To Kill a Mockingbird. The story of Mockingbird goes even further back to the Depression-era South, and finds white attorney Atticus Finch defending a black man accused of beating a white woman. Atticus Finch has become a name synonymous with racial justice in twentieth-century America. The book was published in 1960 and became an instant best-seller, earning author Lee a Pulitzer Prize. It is regularly read among high school literature classes and has become one of the most famous and successful novels ever written. After publishing Mockingbird, Lee never wrote another book. She did assist author Truman Capote with research for his famous novel In Cold Blood, and the character of Dill is said to be based on Capote, who was a childhood friend of the authors. Lee’s estate also published the original manuscript for Mockingbird titled Go Set a Watchman earlier this year, but the release remains somewhat controversial as Lee’s health was deteriorating and questions arose regarding whether it was her idea to publish the novel or not. Continue reading

Check Your Local Listings For ‘Papa Hemingway in Cuba’ This Friday

A new biographical drama titled Papa Hemingway in Cuba is opening in select theaters this Friday. The film comes from indie producer/director Bob Yari (Crash, The Illusionist) about young journalist Ed Meyers who, in 1959, travels to Havana to meet his idol Ernest Hemingway in the midst of the Cuban Revolution. Yari directed the film from a script that was written by an old friend of Hemingway, himself: a war correspondent named Denne Bart Petitclerc, who sadly was never able to get the project into full production before he died. Starring in the lead roles of Meyers and Hemingway are actors Giovanni Ribisi (Saving Private Ryan, Avatar) and Adrian Sparks (The Manhattan Project, The Purge: Anarchy), who are supported by James Remar (X-Men: First Class, Django Unchained), Joely Richardson (The Patriot, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Shaun Toub (The Kite Runner, Iron Man 3), and Minka Kelly (Just Go With It, The Path). Ernest Hemingway’s granddaughter, Mariel Hemingway, is also making a cameo appearance in the film. The trailer is available on MADE. Be sure to look for it in theaters in your area this weekend.

New Tina Fey Comedy ‘Whiskey Tango Foxtrot’ Opening In Theaters This Friday

A new wartime comedy starring Tina Fey (30 Rock, Sisters) and Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street, Focus) titled Whiskey Tango Foxtrot is opening in theaters this Friday, March 4th. The film is an adaptation of author Kim Barker’s novel The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan, about a journalist during her time reporting in the war-ridden Middle East. Screenwriter Robert Carlock (Friends, Saturday Night Live) adapted the book for directing partners Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (I Love You Phillip Morris, Crazy Stupid Love). Co-starring in the film are actors Martin Freeman (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Hot Fuzz), Alfred Molina (Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Arc, Spider-Man 2), Christopher Abbott (Martha Marcy May Marlene, A Most Violent Year), and Billy Bob Thornton (Monster’s Ball, Armageddon). This one first seemed like a pretty strange comedy for Tina Fey to take on, but judging from the latest trailer, it does look like a pretty promising piece of screenwriting, so I guess we’ll just have to see this weekend. The trailer is available here on MADE. Enjoy!

‘Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens’ Now Playing In Theaters Nationwide

After months and months of anticipation, fans can finally rejoice! As of today, Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens is now playing in theaters nationwide, and if you haven’t already secured a ticket, you might have to wait at least a week or two before braving the storm of people waiting in line out the door. Director JJ Abrams (Mission Impossible 3, Super 8) took leave of his Star Trek obligations in order to direct the film, which reunites original stars Mark Hamill (Commander Hamilton, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back), Harrison Ford (Blade Runner, Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Arc), and Carrie Fisher (Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, The Blues Brothers) with an all new generation of actors, led by Daisy Ridley (Blue Season, Scrawl), John Boyega (Junkhearts, Imperial Dreams), Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis, A Most Violent Year), Domhnall Gleeson (Unbroken, Ex Machina), Adam Driver (While We’re Young, This Is Where I Leave You), and Andy Serkis (The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey). The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi Oscar-winning screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan (The Big Chill, The Accidental Tourist) worked on the new project’s script with director Abrams and fellow Oscar-winner Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine, Toy Story 3), about a new threat to peace and justice in the galaxy that occurs 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi concluded. Little more needs be said; all I ask is that you not be an asshole and spoil the plot for everybody in ear-shot of your conversations! Enjoy.

New Dramatic Comedy ‘Our Brand Is Crisis’ With Sandra Bullock Opening In Theaters This Week

Oscar winner Sandra Bullock (Speed, Crash), who has been lending her voice to animated comedies of late, is returning to the big screen this week in a new “dramedy” Our Brand Is Crisis. Directed by Pineapple Express and East Bound & Down director David Gordon Green, the film is a dramatization of Rachel Boynton’s 2005 documentary of the same name by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Peter Straughan (Tinkler Taylor Soldier Spy, The Men Who Stare At Goats). Bullock stars as Jane, an experienced political campaign strategist who is sent to war-torn South American to aid in the installation of a new leader, but whose efforts art threatened to be thwarted by an old political rival. Also starring in the film is Oscar winner Billy Bob Thornton (Armageddon, Monster’s Ball), with Anthony Mackie (Million Dollar Baby, Avengers: Age of Ultron), Joaquim de Almeida (Clear and Present Danger, Behind Enemy Lines), and Scoot McNairy (Argo,12 Years A Slave) included in the supporting cast. Argo producers George Clooney (The Ides of March, The Monuments Men) and Grant Heslov (Good Night and Good Luck, August: Osage County) are behind the production of the project, which thus far has drawn much praise for Bullock’s acting, but also mixed feelings about the screenplay and directing. I suppose you’ll have to decide for yourself when you see it in theaters! The movie opens on Friday. Enjoy the trailer.

New Full Length Trailer For ‘Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens’ Now Available

With the release date for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens drawing ever nearer, fans and movie-buffs alike are jumping for joy with the release of the new full-length trailer. Written by director J.J. Abrams (Armageddon, Super 8) and Oscar-winning screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan (Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back) and Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine, Toy Story 3), the film picks up 30 years after the fall of the Galactic Empire in Return of the Jedi (1983) and finds the heros of the Rebellion facing a new evil that has risen again. Starring in the film are original Star Wars actors Mark Hamill (Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Kingsman: The Secret Service), Carrie Fisher (The Blues Brothers, When Harry Met Sally), Harrison Ford (Blade Runner, The Temple of Doom), Peter Mayhew (A New Hope, Revenge of the Sith) as Chewbacca, Kenny Baker (The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones) as R2D2, and Anthony Daniels (Droids, I Bought A Vampire Motorcycle) as C-3P0, who will be joining a new generation of actors including Domhnall Gleeson (Unbroken, Ex Machina), Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis, A Most Violent Year), Gwendoline Christie (The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay), Daisy Ridley (Blue Season, Scrawl), Andy Serkis (The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Rise of the Planet of the Apes), Adam Driver (What If, This Is Where I Leave You), and John Boyega (Junkhearts, Imperial Dreams). The movie is due out in theaters this December 18th. Enjoy the new trailer!

Statue Stories-Chicago Launches In Lincoln Park

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The Bean in Chicago’s Millenium Park will also be featured as part of Statue Stories Chicago.

A new project here in Chicago is launching this week in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. The project is called Statue Stories Chicago, an idea which first launched in parks in Britain and Chicago is now the first US city to feature the attraction. 31 statues in Lincoln Park will feature new icons that Chicagoans and tourists can scan with their smart phones and then receive a phone call from ‘the statue’ informing them of who they are and providing a small bit of history behind the statue as well. For example, if you were to scan the icon next to the statue of Abraham Lincoln, you would receive a phone call from Abraham Lincoln, whose voice is provided by actor John C. Reilly (Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Step-Brothers). The project is the work of Colette Hiller, who has worked with theaters around the city, including Second City, Steppenwolf, The Goodman, and The Looking Glass, to bring the attractions to life. Other actors taking part in the project include Steve Carrell (The Office, Little Miss Sunshine), David Schwimmer (Friends, Six Days Seven Nights), and Chicago-native Bob Newhart (The Bob Newhart Show, Elf), who provides the voice for his own statue at Navy Pier. So if you’re in Lincoln Park be sure to check out these new talking statues!