Tag Archives: Broadway

Special 40th Anniversary Screenings of ‘Grease’ Open In Theaters This April

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Director Randal Kleiser’s big-screen adaptation of the Broadway hit Grease is celebrating its 40th anniversary this April. To celebrate the occasion, TCM Big Screen Classics Presents and Fathom Events are hosting special screenings of the Oscar-nominated film in theaters across the country. Although Jim Jacob’s and Warren Casey’s original Broadway production received seven Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical, Best Choreography (Birch), Best Actor (Barry Bostwick), and Best Costume Design, it was Kleiser’s film adaptation that would go down in history as an American pop-culture icon, with John Travolta (Pulp Fiction, Face/Off) and Olivia Newton-John (Xanadu, Two of a Kind) in the roles of greaser Danny Zuko and good-girl Sandy Olsson. The film received several Golden Globe nominations, including Best Picture (Musical/Comedy), Best Actor (Travolta), Best Actress (Newton-John), and Best Original Song for Frankie Valli’s “Grease” and John Farrar’s “You’re The One That I Want,” neither of which is featured in the original musical. John Farrar’s “Hopelessly Devoted To You” also earned the film an Oscar-nomination for Best Original Song. For the anniversary event, special screenings will be played at select theaters on April 8th, April 11th, and April 14th. To find showings near you, visit Fathom Events at the link below and enter your Zip Code on your preferred date, and enjoy the show!

TCM Big Screen Classics Presents and Fathom Events

British Actor Alan Rickman Has Died Of Cancer At The Age of 69

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Golden Globe winning actor Alan Rickman has died after a fight with cancer at the age of 69. The British actor was famous around the globe for his roles as Severus Snape in the Harry Potter franchise, and as villain Hans Gruber in the original Die Hard, opposite Bruce Willis. Having worked as an actor, writer, and director, Rickman was a veteran of both the stage and screen, appearing in such Broadway productions as Private Lives in the West End and in films including Galaxy Quest, Love Actually, Sweeney Todd, Alice in Wonderland, Lee Daniel’s The Butler, Dogma, Sense and Sensibility, and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. His absence from the world of acting and filmmaking will sorely be missed in the years to come.

Catch This Week’s Limited Releases Opening In Theaters This Weekend

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Indie films hardly get the public recognition they deserve outside of the circle of internationally known film festivals, or national premieres outside of New York City or Los Angeles (the recently released Mr. Holmes with Sir Ian McKellen and Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Look of Silence serve as perfect examples). But that’s not to say I wouldn’t recommend seeing any of these. This week several such projects will be seeing limited releases on big screens across the country. First on the list is Grandma from writer/director Paul Weitz (About A Boy, In Good Company), which follows a young teenager, Sage, as she goes to her grandmother, Elle Reid, for help when finding herself in a tight spot. The two embark on a day-long journey of self discovery and life reflection that brings both a sense of comfort and motivation to the audience. Actresses Lily Tomlin (Nine to Five, I Heart Huckabees), Julia Garner (Martha Marcy May Marlene, The Perks of Being a Wallflower), and Oscar-winner Marcia Gay Harden (Mystic River, Into The Wild) will be leading the cast on this one. Next on the list is The Last Picture Show director Peter Bogdanovich‘s She’s Funny That Way, starring Imogen Poots (28 Weeks Later, Filth), Owen Wilson (Wedding Crashers, Midnight in Paris), Jennifer Aniston (Horrible Bosses, We’re The Millers), and Kathryn Hahn (Step Brothers, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty). Given the plot of this one revolves around a love-triangle on the set of a Broadway production in New York, I would recommend this one as a good date-night movie. Last, but not least, is another romantic comedy (you would think it’s Valentine’s Day weekend!) called Some Kind of Beautiful from director Tom Vaughn (What Happens in Vegas, Extraordinary Measures). Pierce Brosnan (GoldenEye, The Thomas Crown Affair), Salma Hayek (From Dusk Til Dawn, Desperado), Jessica Alba (Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Awake), and Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange, The Artist) lead the cast in this tale of a Cambridge poetry professor who comes to a type of midlife crises when he begins to reevaluate his life. All three selections are rated R due to some pretty heavy content, but I think they are all definitely worth seeing, so be sure to check your local theater listings for showtimes in your area, and as always…Enjoy!!

Windy City Rib-Fest Happening This Fourth of July Weekend

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The Fourth of July is reason enough to go out and celebrate, but Chicagoans have a few extra reasons for going out this year. The Cubs and the White Sox are both in town this weekend, The Grateful Dead will be at Soldier Field Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night, and Windy City RibFest will be happening in Uptown at the Lawrence and Broadway intersection. RibFest will be open from 12pm-10pm Friday and Saturday, and 12pm-9pm on Sunday, and will feature some of the finest rib vendors around, including Aussom Aussie Australian BBQ, BBQ King Smokehouse, Chicago BBQ Company, and Porky Chicks BBQ. Music and festivities, including several local music acts and arts & crafts activities, will be available as well. There is a recommended donation amount of $5. Enjoy the weekend!

New Drama From Director Clint Eastwood ‘American Sniper’ Opening January 16th

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Academy Award-winning director Clint Eastwood‘s new drama, American Sniper, will be opening in theaters on January 16th. The film stars Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle) as Navy S.E.A.L. sniper Chris Kyle, who recounts his experience in Afghanistan and his 150 confirmed kills. Sienna Miller (Casanova, Stardust) also stars in the film as Kyle’s wife, Taya, and the effects of war on the couple’s family and individual life is depicted through their own separate perspectives. The script comes from Chris Kyle’s autobiography of the same name and was adapted for the screen by Jason Hall (Spread, Paranoia). Eastwood’s last film, an adaptation of the Broadway musical Jersey Girls, was attacked by critics for being a drab alternative to the more energetic and entertaining musical, but when it comes to material on warfare, his style of film making is usually right on par. I guess we’ll find out a month from now, keep an eye out for an upcoming trailer.

Film Adaptation Of Broadway Musical ‘Into The Woods’ Opening In Theaters Christmas Day


A new film adaptation of Into The Woods is opening in theaters this Christmas Day, and the movie features an all-star cast that is lead by Anna Kendrick (End of Watch, Pitch Perfect), Johnny Depp (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Alice in Wonderland), Chris Pine (Star Trek, Unstoppable), Emily Blunt (The Adjustment Bureau, Edge of Tomorrow), and Meryl Streep (The Hours, Doubt). James Lapine adapted the screenplay for the film from the musical by himself and Stephen Sondheim, which opened on Broadway in 1987. The story follows several fairy-tale characters that intertwined as a father and daughter go to barter with a witch who has put a curse on their family tree. Director Rob Marshall (Chicago, Memoirs of a Geisha) helmed the project for Walt Disney Pictures. You can watch the trailer here on MADE, then add it to your list of movies to choose from on Christmas Day.

‘Birdman Or The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance’ Opens October 17th In New York And L.A.

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Although most of us won’t have the opportunity to see this one unless we’re in New York City or Los Angeles, it is still a project worth bringing to your attention. Director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Babel, Biutiful) released a new film at this year’s Venice Film Festival titled Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance. The film features an all star cast lead by Michael Keaton and also featuring Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts. The story follows an actor who, at the height of his career, portrayed an iconic superhero (Birdman) and now must overcome his eccentric ego in order to reclaim his seat in the spotlight by taking a role in a Broadway play. Inarritu directed the film from a screenplay written by himself and screenwriters Nicolas Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, and Armando Bo. Birdman has already seen several additional releases in the United States, including the Telluride Film Festival in August and the New York Film Festival, Hamptons International, and Philadelphia International Film Festivals earlier this month. Chicagoans will get a chance to see it on the 18th as part of the Chicago International Film Festival, but a nationwide theatrical release has not yet been announced. Stay tuned for more information.

New Trailers For Musical Icons James Brown And Frankie Valli


With writers in Hollywood constantly falling short of a new and interesting idea for a good movie, filmmakers are continuing to turn to real-life biographies for inspiration, particularly in the music industry. Such is the case with these two upcoming movies, which follow two of the 20th century’s most original musical acts, the charismatic James Brown, and the New Jersey native Frankie Valli. Get On Up follows the story of James Brown’s rise from poverty and imprisonment to international fame and features an all-star cast including Chadwick Boseman (The Kill Hole, 42), Viola Davis (Doubt, The Help), and Dan Aykroyd (Ghostbusters, The Blues Brothers). The film is directed by The Help director Tate Taylor and comes from a screenplay by Jez and John-Henry Butterworth. Jersey Boys is a film-adaptation of the award winning Broadway musical of the same title, which follows Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and their rise to commercial success from Oscar-winning director Clint Eastwood (Gran Torino, Million Dollar Baby). Other upcoming biopics on music legends includes a film from actor Don Cheadle about legendary jazz musician Miles Davis, and a Jimi Hendrix biopic starring Anthony Mackie (Captain America: The Winter Soldier). While Cheadle’s project is still looking for some solid financing, Mackie will portray Hendrix in a film that will follow the last 9 days of the iconic musician’s life, with Thandie Newton (Crash, The Pursuit of Happyness) and Noomi Rapace (Prometheus, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows) on board to take on supporting roles for director Ol Parker (Imagine Me & You, Now Is Good). Stay tuned for more updates!

Clint Eastwood’s Film Adaptation Of The Broadway Musical ‘Jersey Boys’ Coming In June

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The hit Broadway musical Jersey Boys will be taking a break from the stage to appear on the big screen this summer with director Clint Eastwood’s upcoming film adaptation that follows Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons from their early roots on the New Jersey streets to their critical success. John Lloyd Young, who starred in the original Broadway show, will appear in the film as Valli, as well as Christopher Walken and Freya Tingley from a screenplay written by original writers Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, and John Logan. The film will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and will be hitting theaters on June 20. You can catch the new trailer here on MADE.

Banksy Hits NYC Again!?!

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Banksy has been on an absolute rampage the last four days installing an onslaught of pieces across New York City. This time around we have 3 separate pieces where Banksy seems to have added onto existing tags. Banksy’s stencil reads “The Musical” underneath brash comments like “Dirty Underwear” & “Playground Mob” in an attempt to poke fun at how phrases like “The Musical” can lighten almost any title within a commercialized setting. OOOOO Banksy, always with the left field ideas; I guess we’ll have to wait and see what he has up his sleeve next as the rampage continues.