Tag Archives: hollywood

2017 Tribeca Film Festival Is Now Underway

masks at festival

The 16th annual Tribeca Film Festival is once again underway in New York City. Entries in this year’s festival include films from 28 countries, which are being shown from April 19th to April 30th. The festival has already seen a fair share of controversy this year. Photographers and reporters were incensed to find some lesser known actors walking on the red carpet wearing masks of James Franco, Shia LaBeouf, and Greta Gerwig instead of the actors themselves for the premiere of the film Flames. In addition, a commercial for United Airlines, which was originally scheduled to appear at the festival, was pulled from the line up after the controversy surrounding Dr. David Dao being violently dragged off one of their flights. Despite a fair share of controversy, which has always been typical of the Hollywood scene, there have been some impressive displays at this year’s festivities. Continue reading

This Week in Film History….

serpico

Director Sydney Lumet‘s 1973 undercover police drama Serpico earned Al Pacino his second Oscar nomination for Best Actor. While it was another in a long-running streak of Oscar nominations for Pacino that resulted in no wins until 1992’s Scent of a Woman, Serpico‘s other Oscar nomination was for Best Adapted Screenplay for screenwriters Waldo Salt (Midnight Cowboy, The Day of the Locust) and Norman Wexler (Saturday Night Fever, Staying Alive). Although Serpico proved to be the last Oscar-worthy project of Wexler’s, Waldo Salt had a much longer, and much darker story in Hollywood screenwriting history.

Waldo Salt was born on October 18, 1914 and grew up in Chicago an accomplished academic. He was so accomplished, in fact, that he graduated from Stanford University at the same time his friends were graduating from high school. Shortly thereafter, Salt was in Hollywood working as a screenwriter for MGM. There he worked on and assisted with various writing projects, but his first solo writing adaptation was with a 1937 film called The Bride Wore Red. The next year, Salt joined the American Communist Party, putting himself on the radar for the House Un-American Activities Committee during the Red Scare/McCarthy era 12 years later. Continue reading

This Week In Movie History…

friendly-persuasion

On September 20, 1956, director William Wyler‘s Friendly Persuasion was released in theaters in the United States. Based on the book by Jessamyn West, the story revolves around a Quaker family in 1862, whose faith and belief in non-violence is tested when Confederate troops come sweeping through their land and the family must decide whether to fight or to remain complacent. The film was written by screenwriter Michael Wilson (A Place in the Sun, Planet of the Apes), and received an Academy Award nomination for Best Screenwriting. It wasn’t until 2002, however, that Wilson would receive legitimate recognition for his work on the film. Continue reading

Independent Film Highlights…

This week will see a number of indie projects open in select theaters across the country. The 9th Life of Louis Drax is a mystery thriller from horror director Alexandre Aja (The Hills Have Eyes, Piranha 3D) surrounding a psychologist working with a boy young boy who suffers after a near-fatal fall. The film was penned by actor Max Minghella (The Social Network, The Ides of March), whose late father Anthony was an Oscar-winning screenwriter responsible for such gems as The English Patient and The Talented Mr. Ripley. Jamie Dornan (Marie Antionette, Fifty Shades of Grey), Aiden Longworth (Cut Bank, Hector and the Search for Happiness), Sarah Gadon (The Amazing Spider-Man, Enemy), and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad, Exodus: Gods and Kings) star in the film, which is based on a novel by Liz Jensen. Continue reading

New Woody Allen Dramedy ‘Cafe Society’ Opening In Theaters This Friday

Writer/director Woody Allen (Annie Hall, Manhattan) has had a pretty solid streak since Midnight in Paris and Blue Jasmine both won Oscar awards. His latest project is a dramatic comedy following a young Bronx native who moves to 1930s Hollywood to follow his successful uncle, who is a Hollywood agent. Instead, he falls in love with his uncle’s secretary and upon returning to New York, becomes engulfed in the high-society night club scene in Manhattan. The film features an all-star cast, including Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network, Zombieland), Kristen Stewart (Twilight, Snow White and the Huntsman), Steve Carell (Foxcatcher, The Big Short), and Blake Lively (The Town, The Age of Adaline). Continue reading

Veteran Actress Madeleine LeBeau Passes Away At 92

lebeau

Veteran actress Madeleine LeBeau (8 1/2, Angelique), who was the last living cast member of 1942’s Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart (The Maltese Falcon, The Big Sleep) and Ingrid Bergman (Notorious, Autumn Sonata), has passed away at the age of 92. LeBeau starred as Bogart’s mistress, Yvonne, in a role that mirrored her own experience as a European refugee at the height of the Nazi occupation. LeBeau had made her debut in France with a film called Girls in Distress in 1939 before fleeing with her husband to Spain. They eventually entered the United States with temporary Canadian passports and went to Hollywood to find work. Both LeBeau and her husband, actor Marcel Dalio, were cast in supporting roles in Casablanca, and LeBeau would make two more films (Paris After Dark, Music for Millions) before returning to France following the end of World War II. She would continue to work as an actress until her retirement from the screen in 1970. LeBeau died on May 1st in Spain after breaking her hip.

New Coen Brothers Comedy ‘Hail Caesar!’ Opening In Theaters February 5th

The Coen Brothers are finally back on the big screen with a new comedy titled Hail Caesar!. Starring Scarlett Johansson (The Avengers, Iron Man 2), Channing Tatum (21 Jump Street, Foxcatcher), Ralph Fiennes (The Constant Gardener, Spectre), Jonah Hill (The Wolf of Wall Street, Moneyball) and Coen regulars Tilda Swinton (Burn After Reading, The Grand Budapest Hotel), Josh Brolin (No Country For Old Men, Men In Black 3), and George Clooney (Oh Brother Where Art Thou?, Ocean’s Eleven), the film follows a Hollywood ‘fixer’ who works for Capital Records in the 1950s and must deal with the disappearance of the studio’s biggest star before an upcoming release is ruined by the schemers behind the kidnapping. The film was co-written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen (in their usual fashion), and will be their first project together since 2013’s Oscar-nominated drama Inside Llewyn Davis with Oscar Isaac (A Most Violent Year, Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Carey Mulligan (Drive, The Great Gatsby), although they have written several films since then, including director Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken and Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies. The trailer for Hail Caesar! is available here on MADE. Look for it in theaters this February 5th.

New Comedy With Tina Fey and Amy Poehler ‘Sisters’ Opening In Theaters This Friday

For those who are boycotting Hollywood’s ‘Re-make Era’ or simply have no interest in sitting in a jam-packed theater this Friday night with a bunch of kids and teenagers trying to see the new Star Wars feature, a new comedy with Golden Globe co-hosts Tina Fey (Mean Girls, 30 Rock) and Amy Poehler (Saturday Night Live, Parks and Recreation) titled Sisters can offer you the perfect alternative! Working with director Jason Moore (Everwood, Pitch Perfect) from a script by Emmy winner Paula Pell (Saturday Night Live, The Oscars), the comedy vets pose as sisters (appropriately) who decide to throw one last party in their old family home before their parents finally sell it. Also making appearances in the film are actors Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids, Inherent Vice), Ike Barinholtz (Disaster Movie, Neighbors), James Brolin (Traffic, Catch Me If You Can), Diane Wiest (The Lost Boys, I Am Sam), John Cena (The Marine, Trainwreck), and John Leguizamo (The Lincoln Lawyer, Chef). I wouldn’t really expect this one to be fall-on-your-ass comedy, but Fey and Poehler are excellent comedic vets and work really well together, so if you’re not in the long line to see The Force Awakens, I would definitely give this one some consideration. Enjoy!

New Trailer Offers Sneak-Peak Footage For Upcoming ‘Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice’

A new trailer has just been released for director Zack Snyder‘s upcoming Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. The film will be the follow up to Snyder’s Man of Steel (2013), with Henry Cavill (Stardust, The Man from UNCLE) and Oscar-nominee Amy Adams (American Hustle, Big Eyes) reprising their roles as Superman and Lois Lane, and introducing Ben Affleck (The Town, Argo) in the role of Batman/Bruce Wayne. Honestly, it already looks terrible, but I’ll let you judge for yourself. In preparation for Warner Bros/DC Comics big screen production of Justice League, which is expected in theaters in 2017, the film will also introduce Gal Gadot (Fast & Furious 6, Furious 7) in the role of Wonder Woman (with an independent Wonder Woman movie also expected in theaters in 2017) and Jason Momoa (Conan the Barbarian, Bullet in the Head) in the role of Aquaman. And yes, there will be an independent Aquaman movie coming out in 2018, along with The Flash, who will be played by Ezra Miller (We Need To Talk About Kevin, The Perks of Being A Wallflower) and may be making a brief appearance in this movie. In other words, once Star Wars: The Force Awakens is out, it’s right back to milking the comic books. Also staring in the film are Oscar-nominees Diane Lane (The Perfect Storm, Unfaithful), Michael Shannon (Revolutionary Road, Boardwalk Empire), Jessie Eisenberg (The Social Network, Now You See Me), and Laurence Fishburne (Apocalypse Now, The Matrix), and Oscar-winners Holly Hunter (The Piano, Oh Brother Where Art Thou?) and Jeremy Irons (Reversal of Fortune, Die Hard with a Vengeance). Oscar-winning screenwriter Chris Terrio (Heights, Argo) and David S. Goyer (The Dark Knight Rises, Man of Steel) wrote the script that finds Batman and Superman at arms with each other while a more deadly force is steadily rising and Washington is up in arms about the presence of “super-heros” in our modern society. Considering Snyder is returning, and the impressive number of Oscar-winners working on the film, it will still more than likely be a pretty good movie. I don’t know who decided to hire Ben Affleck as Batman, but let’s just try our best to look passed it. Enjoy the footage.

Toronto International Film Festival Headliners ‘Trumbo’ and ‘Spotlight’ Opening In Theaters This Friday


Movie-goers will have no shortage of great movies to see this weekend. Friday will not only have the chance to see The Peanuts Movie and the new James Bond installment, Spectre, but fans of festival-circuit films will also be able to see two major picks from this years’ Toronto International Film Festival. The first is the biographical drama from director Jay Roach (Meet the Parents, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery) with Golden Globe winner Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad, Godzilla) titled Trumbo. The film follows the famous screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who along with 300 other writers and filmmakers in Hollywood was blacklisted by the federal government during the Red Scare era of the American 1950s. Trumbo is, perhaps, one of the more interesting cases; he continued to write scripts under anonymous surnames while he was blacklisted and even won Oscars for his work on Roman Holiday (1953) and The Brave One (1956). Making up the supporting cast are actors Diane Lane (Unfaithful, Man of Steel), Helen Mirren (The Queen, The Hundred-Foot Journey), Louis C.K. (Louie, American Hustle), Elle Fanning (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Maleficent), John Goodman (The Big Lebowski, Argo), and Michael Stuhlbarg (Pawn Sacrifice, Steve Jobs), in a script adpated by John McNamara (Jericho, Aquarius) from the book Dalton Trumbo by author Bruce Cook. The second Toronto International Film Festival contender opening in theaters this week is also a biographical drama titled Spotlight. This film comes from Oscar-nominated writer/director Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent, Million Dollar Arm) and chronicles the investigative journalist team at the Boston Globe that uncovered the scandal in the Catholic Church revolving around child molestation and cover-up deals within the Archdiocese. Co-written by screenwriter Josh Singer (Fringe, The Fifth Estate), the film stars Mark Ruffalo (Shutter Island, The Avengers), Michael Keaton (Batman, Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), Rachel McAdams (Wedding Crashers, Midnight in Paris), Liev Schreiber (Defiance, Salt), John Slattery (Mad Men, Flags of our Fathers), and Stanley Tucci (Transformers: Age of Extinction, The Hunger Games), and also received high marks at the 2015 Venice Film Festival. Either of these will make great picks to see on the big screen, so be sure to get to the movie theaters in the next week or so to see them while they are still available! The trailer for Trumbo is available here on MADE.