Tag Archives: dylan

Today Marks 50th Anniversary of Beatle’s ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’

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Today (May 26th) marks the 50th anniversary celebration of The Beatle’s revolutionary album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The LP was the first released by the band following their retirement from touring after their final performance at Candlestick Park in 1966. Although The Beatles had already begun a steady transition from being a more traditional pop-rock group with albums like Rubber Soul and Revolver, Sgt. Pepper’s has been hailed as their ultimate creative masterpiece, followed closely perhaps by 1969’s Abbey Road. Released at the beginning of the Summer of Love, it set a new precedent for what a rock and roll record could be. The concept behind the album began following the exhaustion the group experienced after the whirlwind of Beatlemania. Paul McCartney came to Lennon, Starr, and Harrison with an idea that they would record an all new album under an alternative persona, which would free them from the weight of being the Beatles and usher in a fresh wave of musical creativity. Sgt. Pepper’s not only ushered in a new era for the Beatles; it also marked the beginning of the psychedelic rock movement that would see new groups like The Doors, Pink Floyd, and Jefferson Airplane begin to climb the pop music charts. Now, 50 years later, Sgt. Pepper’s is known not only for its conception and importance to 60s rock (and music in general), but also for the history of its production. Continue reading

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

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

New Big Screen Adaptation of ‘Goosebumps’ With Jack Black Opening In Theaters Today

Those of us who grew up in the 90s (which is pretty much all of us) remember watching the popular television adaptation of author R.L. Stine‘s short story collection, titled Goosebumps. Now, 20 years later, a feature-length film adaptation of the popular series is opening in theaters across the country today. Starring Jack Black (School of Rock, Tenacious D and the Pick of Destiny) as R.L. Stine, himself, the film, simply titled Goosebumps, follows a young urban teenager who moves to a small town and meets the real R.L. Stine. As it turns out, the monsters in Stine’s stories are real, and he has spent his life protecting his readers from them by entrapping them in his book, hence the reason behind his madness. All that is thrown into havoc, however, when our young city dweller shows up and unintentionally releases the monsters and they begin to terrorize the town, leaving it up to Stine and his new teenage acquaintances to stop them. The film is directed by Rob Letterman (Shark Tale, Gulliver’s Travels) and penned by screenwriters Darren Lemke (Shrek Forever After, Jack the Giant Slayer), and writing partners Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (Ed Wood, Big Eyes). Appearing in the supporting cast are actors Dylan Minnette (Let Me In, Prisoners), Odeya Rush (The Odd Life of Timothy Green, The Giver), Ryan Lee (Super 8, This is 40), and Oscar-nominee Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone, Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). The trailer is available here on MADE. Also opening in theaters today are the films Truth, All Things Must Pass, and Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies. Enjoy the weekend!

‘The Wolfpack’ and ‘Set Fire To The Stars’ See Limited Releases This Week


Movie-goers in cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles and few other stranglers will be able to see the limited release of two new films this week. The Wolfpack is a biographical documentary from director Crystal Moselle (Frida, Excavating Taylor Mead) about a family of brothers who spend their childhood sheltered from society in an apartment in Manhattan and learning about the outside world by watching films and reenacting their favorite scenes with props and costumes; but when one of the brothers escapes to the outside, their world is quickly shaken. Making up the cast are the Angulo brothers Bhagavan, Govinda, Jagadisa, Krsna, Mukunda, Narayana. The film won the Grand Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for three others at the Seattle, San Francisco, and Edinburgh International Film festivals. The trailer is available here on MADE. Also being released this week is the new biographical drama Set Fire To The Stars about Welsh poet Dylan Thomas. The film comes from director and co-writer Andy Goddard (Stacey Stone, Downton Abbey) and co-writer Celyn Jones (who portrays Dylan Thomas in the film) about author John Brinnin’s journey to New York City to find and meet his poet-hero Thomas before his death. Brinnin is portrayed by Elijah Wood (Deep Impact, The Lord of the Rings), with Kelly Reilly (Sherlock Holmes, Flight), Steven Mackintosh (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Underworld: Evolution), and Shirley Henderson (Trainspotting, Marie Antoinette) making up the rest of the cast. Be sure to check your local theater listings for showtimes in your area. Enjoy!

New Dylan Thomas Biopic ‘Set Fire To The Stars’ Now Playing In Limited Release

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Writer/director Andy Goddard (Torchwood, Downton Abbey) will be showing his new biographical drama Set Fire To The Stars at the Seattle International Film Festival. Starring Elijah Wood (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Bobby) in the role of author/aspiring poet John M. Brinnin (whose novel is the unofficial source material for the movie) as he embarks on a journey to save his inspiring hero Dylan Thomas, who is portrayed by co-writer Celyn Jones (Shameless, The Healer). Thomas’ career was extensive in the field of literature; some of his more famous poetic works include Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night and In The White Giant’s Thigh, but the writer was also known as a literary show-host on BBC radio during the 1940s, and he is famously credited with inspiring such 20th Century artists as Bob Dylan, who took Thomas’ first name, Dylan, as his own stage-name. John Brinnin would accompany Thomas during the latter years of his life while he was traveling across America on a series of literary tours; this is the era of his life that will be the focus of the film. I haven’t found any information pertaining to a nationwide release, but if you’re in the Seattle area on May 15th, you might want to check this one out!

Seattle International Film Festival

Director Martin Scorsese Planning A Grateful Dead Documentary With Director Amir Bar-Lev

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Recent news reports have surfaced about director Martin Scorsese serving as executive producer for an upcoming feature-documentary about the psychedelic rock band The Grateful Dead. Although the project has yet to be titled, Amir Bar-Lev is already set to direct the film, which will cover the entire span of the band’s career from 1965-1995. Biographer/archivist David Lemieux will be lending a hand to The Tillman Story director, who hopes to have the film ready by the time we reach the Grateful Dead’s 50th Anniversary. The documentary will include lots of archival footage and interviews with late band members Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir, plus additional footage from surviving band members Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, and Phil Lesh. The Grateful Dead were formed in Palo Alto, California in 1965 and became well known for their psychedelic sound of rock, folk, and reggae fusion. Scorsese, himself, is well known for covering rock n’ roll icons. His last rock project was the George Harrison documentary Living in the Material World, but he has also covered groups like Bob Dylan, The Band and The Rolling Stones. We’ll keep an eye out for more news on this project. Scorsese is currently working on an upcoming rock n’ roll project for HBO featuring Olivia Wilde from a screenplay by Terence Winter (The Sopranos, The Wolf of Wall Street), so it will really fall to director Bar-Lev to get the project rolling, but we’ll keep an eye out for more news.

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Ben Whishaw Being Eyed By Queen For Freddie Mercury Biopic

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Skyfall was one of the most successful films in the James Bond franchise, and marked a lot of firsts for modern Bond films. Ralph Fiennes brought a male actor back to the role of ‘M’ after Judi Dench’s character, who was the first to portray ‘M’ as a female alongside Pierce Brosnan in 1995’s Goldeneye, was killed off. The roots of Bond’s secretary, Moneypenny, were also explored in more detail for the first time in Bond history, spanning back to the 1950s when the first novel, Casino Royale, was published. Skyfall also marked the return of Bond’s Quartermaster, portrayed in almost every single film by the late Desmond Llewelyn, who made his first appearance as ‘Q’ with Sean Connery in From Russia With Love (1963), and his last with Brosnan in The World Is Not Enough (1999). The role of ‘Q’ was briefly taken over by John Cleese in Die Another Day (the character being given the initial ‘R’ in order to follow ‘Q’), but with Skyfall, a youthful and fresh face was called for to take on the character, and ended up going to actor Ben Whishaw. Whishaw has made appearances in such films as Layer Cake, I’m Not There (in which he portrayed a personality of Bob Dylan), and Cloud Atlas, and is now being eyed by British rock band Queen to play the part of their late lead-singer, Freddie Mercury, in an upcoming biopic.

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As of now there is only a script by Peter Morgan on the table, so details regarding production and a release date are still to be determined, but if the band members think Whishaw a good choice to portray Freddie, we may see him taking on his first major lead role. The actor is already in talks for another Bond film, and is currently filming a project titled Heart of the Sea, but if he agrees to take the Mercury role, we could see the film come out some time around 2016. Stay tuned to MADE for more details.