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Entries in Babs (34)

Monday
Apr242017

OTD: Babs, Shirley, and "Cool" from West Side Story

On this very gay day (4/24) in history as it relates to showbiz...

1873 Silent film director Robert Wiene, best known for The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920) born in Breslau (Note: other online sources disagree with the IMDb on this birthdate but it's always fun to think about Caligari)

1927 Oscar winning cinematographer Pasqualino de Santis born in Italy. Classics include Romeo and Juliet, The Damned, Death in Venice, and L'Argent

1930 Richard Donner, superstar director/producer of the 1980s, behind films like The Goonies, Lethal Weapon, and the first two Supermans. Apparently retired after 16 Blocks (2006) with Bruce Willis

1931 The Public Enemy starring James Cagney and Jean Harlow was enjoying its opening weekend at movie theaters. It was a big hit, ending in the top ten of its year. Variety claimed it was "low brow material" attempting to be high brow by its craftsmanship. If only critics knew in the moment -- they almost never do even now -- that "low brow" genres regularly produce classics.

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Sunday
Mar122017

Big Little Tweetweek

The hilarious thing is she's always worked this much. Good luck to all the new completists out there at ever finishing her filmography!

After the jump Chris Hemsworth, Big Little Lies, the Gyllenhaals, film critic humor, and prayers for Barbra Streisand... 

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Thursday
Feb162017

10 Days Until Oscar. Stage to Screen Roles 

Paul Lukas and Bette Davis in "Watch on the Rhine"

It's ten days until Oscar and soon this post may be obsolete! To date, unless I've miscounted, ten actors have won the leading Oscar for reprising a role they won praise for first on the Broadway stage. Soon there could be 11 depending on how well Denzel Washington fares on Oscar night for Fences

ACTORS WHO WON LEAD OSCARS REPRISING THEIR BROADWAY ROLES
They are...

• George Arliss for Disraeli (1929/30)
Arliss had played this role in the Broadway production in 1911

• Paul Lukas for Watch on the Rhine (1943)
He previously played this role from 1941 through early 1942 on Broadway -- the transfer to the screen was mighty quick! 

• Jose Ferrer for Cyrano de Bergerac (1950)
He won the Tony for this iconic role in 1947. Later in 1990 Gerard Depardieu would also be nominated for playing the same role -- and Steve Martin arguably should have been for Roxanne -- but Depardieu didn't win...

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Tuesday
Dec202016

25th Anniversary: Prince of Tides (1991)

by Eric Blume

Twenty five years ago, director Barbra Streisand delivered her big-screen adaptation of the Pat Conroy novel The Prince of Tides for Christmas.  The film went on to win the Best Actor Golden Globe for Nick Nolte, as well as seven Oscar nominations, including Best Picture (but famously not a Best Director nod for Streisand).  

Looking at the film now, The Prince of Tides feels like a remnant from a lost Hollywood genre:  the mainstream, gimmick-free adult drama.  Streisand’s instincts lean to the commercial, and she’s fully devoted to the film’s rather banal psychobabble that purports how one good solid cry can heal a childhood rape.  The script may be as deep as a raindrop, but it has its strengths as well, and they’re strengths that align with Streisand’s own...

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Monday
Sep052016

007/11 Links

Radar Daniel Craig offered $150 million to continue to play 007 twice more. That's rich but the James Bond franchise is worth billions
Billboard Barbra Streisand gets her eleventh #1 album with "Encore: Movie Partners Sing Broadway" further cementing her lead as the women with the most #1 albums (Madonna is a distant second). Her first #1 album was in 1964. Talk about staying power.
The Guardian Carrie Fisher on getting older and the new doc about her and her mother

Shadowplay isn't as taken with It Follows as most critics were
In Contention will Moonlight be another Oscar player for A24? I'm seeing this tomorrow. Can't wait.
Film Mixtape a lovely review of Little Men
Awards Daily five Oscar takeaways from Telluride Film Festival from Rooney Mara in Best Actress to Arrival's iffy prospects
AV Club Stanley Tucci not up for reprising his Devil Wears Prada role. Curious. That's exactly what he did in Burlesque.
Vulture knitwear as MVP of The Light Between Oceans 
Rachel Wagner surveys the rest of the animated films opening this year 

Finally
Congratulations to Taiwanese superstar Shu Qi who just married longtime rumored boyfriend actor/director Stephen Fung. You've seen Shu Qi in several movies no doubt (including recent critical darling The Assassin) but if Stephen Fung doesn't sound quite as familiar think back. The Hong Kong star was one half of the central romance in LGBT classic Bishonen (1998) as the jaded gigolo who falls for a beautiful young cop (played by Daniel Wu, currently starring on AMC's Into the Badlands). Shu Qi was also in that movie (if I recall correctly as Wu's unaware girlfriend?) so the pair go way back... though it should be noted that they have stated that their romance is only four years old. Fung recently directed and co-starred in the Tai Chi Hero movies.

Next up for the pair? Shu Qi's remake of My Best Friend's Wedding (in the Julia Roberts role of course) is making the rounds now and Stephen Fung's next directorial feature The Adventurers is in preproduction starring Andy Lau, Jean Reno, and you guessed it... Shu Qi

Friday
Sep022016

Tweetweek at the ballet with a wacky neighbor and frosted pop tarts

Two Tweets that are consuming most parts of my brain at the moment...  

 

Babs getting verklempt over Hathaway is too camp for even me.

I mean. Between those two tweets who can we think of anything else now? Okay we'll try after the jump with tweets on tv feminism, Sully anticipation, Sally Field's range, and finding Mr Darcy...

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Monday
Jun132016

Tony Winners for 2016

A lot of us needed that awards show last night - a celebration of passion, talent, and love for community - given the horrific events of the weekend.

In the opening number the musical acting nominees joined James Corden on stage (from left to right: Benanti, Corden, Krakowski, Miranda, Goldsberry, Levi, and Danielle Brooks

The Tonys were particularly defiantly joyous Sunday evening with an exuberant production, which featured a fun curveball of having each performing cast do a miniature version of a classic showtune outside the theater before or after they performed their shows number onstage inside. Other highlights included: Audra McDonald doing a high kick while pregnant; James Corden's bit with the Tony accountants; Frank Langella being more concerned with the tragedy in Orlando than his Tony; and a hilarious view of the nominees through the prism of their guest star work in the Law & Order franchise. Poor Danny Burstein! Or, rather, 'well employed Danny Burstein' who guest starred on Law & Order so many times it was like watching a man age in time lapse photography...

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Saturday
Apr162016

Q&A: It's a zoo in here.

Hello! It's your host Nathaniel checking in from a screening frenzy. I'm at the Nashville International Film Festival briefly to serve on their New Directors jury but coming back to you, dear readers, on Monday night. Meanwhile here in New York, Jason and Manuel have already lept into Tribeca Film Festival reporting.

For this week's Q&A column I asked readers for a few animal questions since Monty, my baby boy and the world's first Oscar predicting cat (unfortunately he was never a very committed pundit), has been ill. While he's on the mend (hopefully) it's hard to pull my thoughts away from our four legged friends. Herewith 9 reader questions, some animal themed some not...

JAMES: Ever named a pet after an on-screen animal (or human)? 

My cat is named after Montgomery Clift and unfortunately the name suited him because he has been quite a moody thing from his teensiest days until now. He was found in the streets of the Bronx, as far as I know, as a tiny mewling mama-less thing and I got him way too young from the shelter. But even grumpy as he is, he is always right next to me no matter what room I'm in and every once in a while he looks at me like I'm Elizabeth Taylor and snuggles up and it's all worth it. 

(I was actually going to get a second cat years ago and name it Liz but for various reasons it didn't happen.)

HAAJEN: Which animal should be paired with Julianne Moore, Juliette Binoche and Jennifer Law in a movie?

What a weird freaking question that I love. It's like when Kidman's familiar was a monkey in The Golden Compass. So I'm going to say black panther for Julianne, seagulls for Juliette (I always picture her in the salty air near water -- is this a ghost image of Lovers on the Bridge (1990)?) I would also pay to see JLaw in the Clint role in a remake of Any Which Way You Can (1980) if only because I can't imagine the outcome of an absolute war to steal scenes between JLaw and an Orangutan. 

Naturally I have no photos to support this so please enjoy this photo of Idris Elba with a fake tiger.

It is extremely easy to enjoy. 

PEARL: What are your thoughts on Barbra Streisand and Barry Levinson embarking on yet another production of Gypsy for a start up studio? My spirit animal (fox) says they likely face a difficult and painful journey.

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