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Lessons from the success of "It"

"The marketing was smart...they did a good job of using a "less is more" approach" - Jakey

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Entries in Adaptations (211)

Wednesday
Jun212017

Director Joel Edgerton's "Boy Erased" Heads to Focus, While the Author of the Memoir Addresses Concerns

By Daniel Crooke

Give or take a big, broad Black Mass or two, Aussie toughie Joel Edgerton has proven himself to be a craftsman of restraint throughout his most recent crop of work, and continues to surprise audiences by subverting their expectations of how a man of his hulking size and stature should emote on the big screen. His performance in last year’s criminally undervalued Loving buries deep currents of sensitivity beneath the protective creases of his brooding face, and he manages to say more and speak louder through the locked intensity of his body language than the volume of his voice in Trey Edward Shults’s apocalyptic downer It Comes At Night

However, his most compelling work as an artist to date has been behind the camera...

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Monday
Jun192017

"Frozen" Gets a Cast for the Stage

Full casting for Broadway hopeful Frozen has been announced. The names have been trickling out for months but now it's all official. The out of town tryouts begin in August in Denver (so if you live there, do report back!). It's quite a high profile gig for all of the cast members none of whom have been Tony nominated and many of whom are in early stages of their careers.

This image, headshots for the two leads Caissie Levy and Patti Murin, is going around and though accidental I couldn't help but giggle a little. Do they share a hairdresser and colorist? Hopefully the differences in the stage sisters will be easy to read via acting and costuming. It's going to be weird to have it on Broadway where Wicked, which Frozen rips off so liberally from, is a Broadway mainstay. We'll see. One assumes Disney will add songs by already EGOTed team Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez to the second half or that's going to be one lopsided stage musical with all the songs sung before intermission! [More on the cast after the jump.]

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Tuesday
Jun132017

Emmy FYC: Aubrey Plaza's multiplicity in "Legion"

We're sharing our dream Emmy nominations as balloting is in progress. Here's Ben Miller...

TV creator Noah Hawley broke onto the scene quickly with the first season of Fargo.  After delivering a stellar superior second season, he was given the freedom to develop whatever he wanted at FX.  Born from that freedom was Legion.  Borrowing from its X-Men source material, Legion crafted its own little niche in prestige television.  No other series, save The Leftovers, was weirder and more divisive in its execution. 

Legion follows David (Dan Stevens), a mutant with telepathic abilities stuck in an insane asylum who finds love and conspiracy as he discovers he might (or might not) be insane.  His best friend in the asylum is Lenny, played by Aubrey Plaza.  Following a series of mind-bending events, Lenny is killed.  This isn’t much of a spoiler as it happens in the first episode.

After Lenny dies, Plaza comes to life...

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Friday
Jun092017

"The Crucible" Is Just About Witches

The Tony Awards are this Sunday, so all week we’ve been talking stage-to-film adaptations. Here’s Goody Jorge with the mother of all allegorical plays… 

At this point everyone knows that The Crucible is not about the Salem Witch trials.

Arthur Miller’s 1953 play is a very straightforward and less-than-obvious allegory for the McCarthy era and the prosecution of believed Communists in the U.S. It has become a staple of American theater and inspired dozens of generations to think twice before finger-pointing. 

Underneath even its Red Scare themes, the play is about much more...

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Thursday
Jun082017

Fifty Shades Blander 

By Spencer Coile 

It is a sunny, carefree weekday afternoon. A spur of the moment decision leads me to rent the 2017 "blockbuster," Fifty Shades Darker, which prides itself on being the sequel to the risque and monotonous Fifty Shades of Grey. It's new to DVD, I had read half of the second book several summers ago, the first film was altogether harmless, what did I have to lose? 

Two hours, it would appear.

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Wednesday
Jun072017

Revisiting "Crimes of the Heart"

In honor of Diane Keaton’s AFI Lifetime Achievement Award tomorrow, here’s Eric Blume with a look back at Crimes of the Heart (1986)

Beth Henley won a Pulitzer Prize in 1981 for her play Crimes of the Heart, and five years later it was retooled by Henley herself in a film version directed by Bruce Beresford.  The film teamed three of the biggest actresses of the 80’s:  Diane Keaton as the oldest spinster sister Lenny, Jessica Lange as saucy middle child Meg, and Sissy Spacek as spacey youngest Babe.   

Keaton is forced to carry the film for the first ten minutes out of the gate, and she’s strapped with some clunky exposition.  She feels tentative, which is partly aligned with her character, but in a way where she feels not fully assured, like she’s finding her way into the role.  Her Southern accent doesn’t come easily to her, and it takes her a while to learn how to make the accent soar to funny dimensions. 

But then ten minutes in, she has her first scene with Lange, and the film starts to find its groove...

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