A number of series, including ‘Pirates of the Caribbean,’ have practically collapsed on arrival in the past few months. Can Hollywood survive? (And which franchises will help?)
Arnaud Valois didn’t expect much from the new film “120 Beats Per Minute.” Indeed, “after shooting the film last year, he returned to the Montorgueil area, his sophrology and his clients. (They all went on hiatus during filming, he said, and they all returned when he came back.) His practice ‘helped me to not have a baby blues after the shooting,’ he said. ‘Starting something real and simple. Not having assistants, and someone who comes to your house in the morning and drives you, and hair and makeup … a real life.'”
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s latest work, an art exhibit for the Manchester international festival, brings the 1947 partition of India to full and painful life. She knows it’s intense: “This is personal. It’s an ode to my grandparents’ generation. How did it feel that, when you left your home, it not only stopped being your home, but became part of an enemy country?”
“Twenty years ago [Monday] the Supreme Court issued a landmark decision and unanimously overturned congressional legislation that made it unlawful to transmit ‘indecent’ material on the Internet if that content could be viewed by minors. The justices ruled that the same censorship standards being applied to broadcast radio and television could not be applied to the Internet.” David Kravets recounts the history.
They say that “the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers has pushed for ‘outrageous rollbacks'” during negotiations. The contract covers 160,000 performers in film and TV, so … that’s a lot.
For one thing, all of the actors had to learn how to wrestle. “We knew from the beginning GLOW was a show about bodies and women using their bodies in different ways that they hadn’t used them before, and using bodies in ways that we as an audience haven’t seen before. It felt pretty important that, to honestly tell that story, we should show you the women’s real bodies going through this experience.”
Yay, more stories for South Asian Muslims! Well, South Asian Muslim men, straight men, with white girlfriends, anyway. “This fantasy doesn’t have much room for South Asian women. Their choices are reflective of the stubborn limitations of an industry where straight men still dominate, and where whiteness remains an integral component to what love looks like onscreen.”
Why Netflix? Well, “plot points include a pignapping, Mija’s desperate pursuit, a bumbling Animal Liberation Front troop, an insecure corporate villainess (played with pitch-perfect iciness by Ms. Swinton) and a foray into the grisly mechanics of factory farming.” The last bit is where studios drew the line.
The journalist, Kevin Powell, is suing based on many similarities to his work, including that of a character who in his seris of 1990s Vibe articles was a “composite character.” In addition, he “argues that a bulk of the film appears to be based on his jailhouse interviews with [Tupac Shakur].”
“What are some references you’ve used to frame the storytelling on the show and move the characters and narratives forward?
“A lot of Shakespeare. I’ve used Richard III because he’s ruthless in getting what he wants and then ghosts of the people he killed start haunting him.”
“Founded in 2003, Common Sense Media provides parents with an online rating system that suggests age-appropriate shows for children, highlighting those that underscore admirable character traits like courage, empathy and perseverance. On Tuesday it will introduce a new metric: the portrayal of gender. At its website, a symbol with the phrase ‘positive gender representations’ will appear with a film or TV show, meaning that reviewers judged it to prompt boys and girls to think beyond traditional gender roles.”
“Thomas Edison might be best known for the electric lightbulb, but he was also a connoisseur of strange short films.” And one of those odd little movies was Boxing Cats. (includes video)
“While women, people of color, LGBTQ folk and other historically marginalized communities in Hollywood continue to insist ‘diversity pays,’ the box office success of films with diverse casts such as Hidden Figures ($230.1 million worldwide) and Get Out ($251.2 million worldwide) is inevitably deemed a ‘surprise.’ A new study and database crafted by Creative Artists Agency, however, is aiming to take some of the surprise out of box office performance, noting that across every budget level a film with a diverse cast outperforms a release not so diversified.”
“What makes that era seem if not golden then at least more sophisticated is that by comparison, local television today, Boston included, is in the doldrums. For the declining influence of local television, and for the withering influence upon younger viewers, executives blame the internet and the profusion of cable options. A reason they do not acknowledge is that it was made easier by the decline in quality since the era.”
“Under the two-year deal with Snap Inc., Time Warner – which owns Warner Bros. as well as cable networks CNN, HBO, TBS and TNT – will develop and produce up to 10 made-for-Snapchat shows per year. The projects will span genres, including scripted dramas and comedies, and will reach across Time Warner’s networks and entertainment properties, meaning that Wonder Woman or Batman could one day end up on Snapchat.”
“Kristin Scott Thomas, Penelope Wilton, Joanna Scanlan and Steffan Rhodri are among the stars performing the monologues” – a series of nine online videos collectively titled Brexit Shorts: Dramas from a Divided Nation – “by writers including Abi Morgan, Meera Syal, Maxine Peake and David Hare.”
That pretty staggering disparity has left many people on Twitter gobsmacked, but in truth, Gadot’s $300,000 paycheck is perfectly in line with the amount of money paid to most actors at the beginning of their superhero careers.
Videos that promote abhorrent ideas or ideology don’t violate YouTube’s terms of service if they don’t actually encourage acts of violence, and blocking content based on the ideas it contains is a slippery slope the company would rather avoid. But that doesn’t mean that it can do nothing …
“The fact that it’s so easy to edit and change both movies and music is something I think has caused some of the creative process to suffer a bit. By doing mock-ups of everything, you’re not allowing for some of the performance creativity that happens, some of the magic that used to happen when you’re out there working with the orchestra.”
Though six minutes are gone, including some of the violence in the movie, but “China-based expats and local moviegoers were quick to pick up on the missing Doppelganger gay moment, which takes place late in the film between the two cyborgs Walter and David, both played by [Michael] Fassbender. Many said the removal of the gay kiss is much more jarring than the various cuts to the film’s violence.”
Yeah, we’ve got a problem. “As a nation, we’ve never known what to do with our fondness for the work of men who have become troublesome. We force ourselves to practice impossible moral surgery that hopes to cut off the artist to save the art. Mr. Cosby’s mistrial just further extends our permanent impasse with certain great figures and their problems.”
Direct talk from a critic: “What is India really like? British TV doesn’t really care. Instead, the point of India on telly is to serve as an exotic backdrop to western dramas of self-discovery.”
Well, some of it, at least. Some may also have been used to finance – this is real, people – The Wolf of Wall Street. “Now, the US government is looking to claw some of that money back—and, in a bizarre turn of events—wants Hollywood to fork over millions in assets the DOJ says were purchased with dirty money.”
The new Brendan Gleeson/Emma Thompson movie is based on a book that was anti-Nazi propaganda for Communist East Germany. (But is that a problem?)
And they snagged two high-level Sony executives to help them out, too. What does this mean for your Fire stick or Chromecast? Well, it might be time to snag an Apple TV.
Hire women playwrights. “In the ‘I Love Dick’ writers’ room, staffed exclusively with women and those who don’t identify as male or female, writers were asked to share their own sexual experiences. After a week binge-watching films by artists such as Hito Steyerl, Agnès Varda and Chantal Akerman, [playwright Annie] Baker and [playwright Heidi] Schreck assembled those stories into the four monologues.”
“Studios will not be able to point to their international grosses forever, though. The days when only U.S. production companies could mount giant-scale productions with sophisticated special effects are rapidly receding. Major markets like China, Japan, and India have their own thriving film industries churning out big hits, and Hollywood is sorely lacking in younger stars with the kind of generational pull that Cruise or Depp still possess with viewers worldwide.”
Their films – they made more than 125 – “were unconnected to nearby Hollywood. Short, experimental, nontheatrical, and nonnarrative, they belong more to an avant-garde or independent tradition – and sometimes a commercial one. Charles said himself, ‘They’re not experimental films, they’re not really films. They’re just attempts to get across an idea.'”
“The US Justice Department is seeking to acquire the rights to films, including the comedy sequel Dumb and Dumber To, as part of an effort to recover $540m in assets it says were stolen from Malaysia’s troubled wealth fund.”
“Paying for TV content from on-demand digital video services will grow by more than 30% to £1.42bn at the turn of the decade, claims consultancy firm PwC. This rise in popularity will see revenue from video services edge ahead of an estimated £1.41bn from cinemagoers.”