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With the highly anticipated film version of his classic musical Into the Woods filming and photos from the set of stars like Meryl Streep, Chris Pine, and Johnny Depp leaking along the way, Stephen Sondheim is getting some serious attention these days. Not that he hasn't before; he is quite possibly the definitive musical theatre composer of our time. But the big screen adaptation of his fractured fairy tale story will bring his genius to an even wider audience (as did the 2007 Sweeney Todd film... [Read more]
Telekinesis And The Carrie Remake During the last week, I’ve been thinking a lot about telekinesis—being able to move objects with the mind—and telepathy—mind reading, or the ultimate experience of putting yourself in someone else’s shoes from a sensory standpoint. It all began when I watched the publicity stunt released for the upcoming remake of the film Carrie. Src: 2013 © The MegaMind Videos via YouTube.com Why anyone would even think of re-creating that Stephen King classic is beyond... [Read more]
Src: Flickr/Bookworm by Nathan O'Nions I’ve had a love affair with books ever since that day more than 30 years ago when I first learned to read. Some of my most cherished early childhood memories are when my mother and I read some favorite book series together at bedtime—the Ramona books by Beverly Cleary, Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and Dorrie The Little Witch series by Patricia Coombs. Two were made into a movie or television show well after the books were publis... [Read more]
Broadway actors are stars, too. Fresh off my post from last week discussing the casting of Michelle Williams in the 2014 Broadway revival of Cabaret and the inevitable discussion of Hollywood actors taking gigs from Broadway performers, I can't help but put in my two cents on a closely related matter. Because, like many loyal Broadway fans, it not only irks me to see screen stars (who may or may not have much stage experience or musical talent to speak of) getting lead roles in Broadway shows, ... [Read more]

Gravity Shocks and Awes at Venice Film Festival

September 5, 2013
Judging from the reviews coming out of Venice last week, the seven years in between Children of Men and Alfonso Cuarón’s latest film Gravity were well-spent. In a 180° turn away from the big budget, blockbuster, 3-D styling of other recent space films like Avatar and Star Trek, Cuarón has eschewed aliens, lasers and fight scenes in favor of a sparse, introspective approach to the genre. On the surface, Gravity sounds like a minimalist, almost clinical, cinematic exercise -- two faces, two bodi... [Read more]
Check out The Top 10 Films Coming Soon to a Theater Near You: Part 1! Inside Llewyn Davis Directors: Joel and Ethan Cohen Release Date: Dec 6 December could be the weirdest month of movies to hit the theaters together in a long time led by the latest Coen Brothers effort. A soft, gauzy blur hangs over everything in the trailer to heighten the nostalgia. Based on the posthumously published memoirs of influential folk singer David Van Ronk, Inside Llewyn Davis presents a look at the hard-luck li... [Read more]
He's still rocking Broadway There is quite the Shakespeare surge this season on the Great White Way. After last season's acclaimed nearly-one-man Macbeth starring Alan Cumming (Cabaret), a more traditional production starring Ethan Hawke (Gattaca) and directed by Jack O'Brien (Hamlet, Hairspray) is slated to begin performances in October. And one of this season's big celebrity vehicles is a new revival of Romeo and Juliet starring Orlando Bloom (not exactly a teenager anymore, but Legolas can pr... [Read more]
Zero Theorem Release Date: TBD Director: Terry Gilliam Rarely do you see a famous director, even a fairly eccentric one like Terry Gilliam, release a director’s statement prior to the release of a film, but apparently Gilliam is so hyped about The Zero Theorem that he felt compelled to release such a statement which included the following morsel: “Having not worked with a budget this small for several decades, I was forced to work fast and instinctively, pressured only by time and money. We r... [Read more]

Indie Film Diary: Marketing

August 16, 2013
In the wake of the massive amount of hype surrounding the rise of crowd funding for independent films, it’s easy to forget that for every major Hollywood project that gets gobs of press because Zach Braff, Bret Easton Ellis or Spike Lee is affiliated with it, there are thousands of minor players grinding it out in the trenches of Facebook and other social media trying to make a dent in the collective conscience. While swamped in the minutiae of production, rehearsals, rewrites, scheduling and f... [Read more]
I love Disney. I know that by your mid-twenties, a lot of people expect you to grow out of it, but I can't help it. There's something about Disney films that takes me back to a simpler place and time, and those guys sure know how to tell a story that tugs at your heart strings. Having grown up on the films, I was thrilled to find out in my teens that some of my favorites had been adapted as stage musicals. Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King had been huge successes on Broadway, and since the... [Read more]