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Entries in Baz (21)

Sunday
Apr132014

Strictly Baz

As you may or may not have heard Baz Luhrmann has been in the news again this week. 2013 was another big year for him with The Great Gatsby exceeding expectations (financially). The buzz on Baz hasn't quieted in this new year. On March 2nd, his wife Catherine Martin won another pair of Oscars to match her Moulin Rouge! statues and new collaborations for the Bazmark spouses are on the way.

First up is the stage musical adaptation of his breakthrough debut hit Strictly Ballroom (1992). The Guardian featured him a few days ago -- the video is more of a commercial for the show really than a true interview but there are clips from the show and Baz statements worth parsing.

I was 29 for the film. In the back of my mind I always thought 'it's got to be a musical'. I thought 'God, I hope I don't end up 40 and I'm doing Strictly Ballroom musical.' And I'm 52. So I think it will always be in my life. I think a bit like a band that had their first hit song. If you aren't playing that hig song at concerts until you have a foot in the grave then probably you're doing something wrong for the audience and probably you're doing something wrong for yourself. So I've just accepted that it's actually a fundamental part of our life and our journey"

The show, which obviously intends a Broadway run given how frequently Baz drops the word "Broadway" while talking about it is playing in Sydney Australia and the reviews for the show have just arrived which are generally positive though it's amusing that the Telegraph and Guardian critics say almost exactly opposite things about how it stacks up to the beloved film version. 

Baz's next film project-- if he actually goes through with it -- is a real surprise. The rumor is he'll direct the big screen version of the ol' TV series Kung Fu. I can't imagine what would attract Luhrmann to this property which is such an about face, even if he does love to genre-hop. But I pray to God, they dump the whole non-Asian conceit that the TV show went with. David Carradine was such a white dude, you know, and nobody needs 21st century narratives about ethnic anything that pretend audiences can only bear to look at white faces. Even if he does decide to do it, we won't see it for years; his films often appear to be on speed but the auteur isn't speedy. What's more he's supposedly also doing a Napoleon miniseries for TV and a TV series about the early days of hip-hop. How many of those do you think will actually come to be? It takes him five or so years to make everything, after all.  

People will surely make jokes about him adding musical numbers to Kung Fu though it's tough to graft those on to memories of that sedate and dusty TV show. But maybe it's not as impossible as it sounds. Every single one of Baz's films yearns to be a musical even though only one of them truly is.  Given that pervasive feeling, it's just bizarre that he hasn't made one since Moulin Rouge! but maybe he knows it's untoppable? Singular sensations are called that for a reason. They're rare and glorious freaks. 

Sunday
Dec012013

Linkville

Television Blend Baz Luhrmann may direct Napoleon as a miniseries for television
House Next Door on the Oscar prospects of August: Osage County. Yet another critic who thinks Julia is the MVP. I'm mystified but congrats, Julia!
In Contention wonders if The Wolf of Wall Street is just what Oscar season ordered? We know that the SAG screening went sensationally well in Los Angeles. Our friend Paul, who we just featured in Reader Spotlight, thinks Leonardo DiCaprio is now the Best Actor frontrunner and tweeted this photo from the festivities:

 

 

Cinema Blend Jurassic World not a reboot (thank god) but a sequel set 22 years in future. Chris Pratt, suddenly in demand since slimming down and bulking up for ZDT, rumored for lead.
Variety Fernando Eimbcke's Club Sandwich wins the Turin Fest. We interviewed its actress icymi. 

RIP Paul Walker (1973-2013)
And finally, as you've undoubtedly heard by now, Paul Walker died yesterday in a car accident in California en route to or from a charity event of all things. Terrible. He was 40 years old. The actor starred in all but one of the six episodes of the big screen series The Fast and Furious. It's worth noting that The Fast and the Furious 7 is currently filming. There's no word yet on exactly how and what they'll do to finish it without him but the movie will undoubtedly move forward.

The original F&F franchise director Rob Cohen told Variety:

His American beauty, his athleticism, the directness of his approach to the character, his effusive, down-to-earth personality brought joy to me and everyone around him."

Aside from the F&F franchise we'll remember him most for that All American b&w jock beauty in  Pleasantville (1998) and one of the best B movies of the early Aughts Joy Ride (2001).

Tuesday
Sep172013

Curio: Happy Birthday Baz

Alexa here. Today is Baz Luhrmann's birthday, his 51st if you're interested in counting. After Gatsby, is a Nathaniel-prognosticated vampire remake on its way? Or perhaps a zombie opera? Bollywood mermaids? For Baz, it seems the possibilities are endless, the heart open, the mind a whirl.  

Here are some goodies that celebrate a bit of his onscreen largesse to date. 

Gatsby poster by Adam Maida.

Satine-inspired brooches, some words from Daisy and Romeo + Juliet after the jump

Click to read more ...

Friday
Aug232013

"Spectacular! Spectacular!" ...Now With a Third "Spectacular!"?

Have you heard that Baz Luhrmann wants to convert Moulin Rouge! to 3D?  On principal we should tsk tsk this because sensible people hate what 3-D hath wrought (ticket price inflation and obsessive preferencing of new technology rather than obsessive quality control) but the very best and only great thing about the 3-D movement is the rare opportunity it has afforded us the chance to see beloved movies back on the big screen -- yay Jurassic Park -- albeit in bastardized form.

But still. Consider...

"She is mine!"

Moulin Rouge! is such a Spectacular! Spectacular! Tiered Cake of Visual Goodies that it could surely handle yet one more layer of frosting. And the stage craft on "Hindi Sad Diamonds" was already desperately trying to go 3-D to begin with.

I'm making excuses for 3-D because any chance to see it on the big screen again is welcome. I'd be there with bells on and absinthe in hand. That five times during its initial release was wondrous and here's to number six. Not that on should hold one's breath waiting for Baz Luhrmann to follow through or get back to work. You know how he do inbetween features. 

Monday
May132013

Box Office Big Spenders: Tony Stark vs Jay Gatsby

Excess was in this weekend, the second of the summer movie season despite the slight technicality of Spring having just started. Billionaires Tony Stark and Jay Gatsby were flaunting their expensive suits and pining for Pepper & Daisy everywhere you looked.

Iron Gatsby via Nathaniel R

Cheer up boys, you can now afford your second twenty-second home.

BOX OFFICE TOP DOZEN
01 IRON MAN THREE $72.4 (cum. $284.8) Reviewed
02 THE GREAT GATSBY  $51.1 *NEW* Reviewed
03 PAIN & GAIN  $5 (cum. $41.6)
04 PEEPLES  $4.8 *NEW* 
05 42 $4.6 (cum. $84.7)
06 OBLIVION $3.8 (cum. $81.6) Reviewed
07 THE CROODS $3.6 (cum. $173.2)
08 THE BIG WEDDING $2.5 (cum $18.8)
09 MUD $2.3  (cum $8.3)
10 OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL $.8 (cum. $229.9) Reviewed
11 SCARY MOVIE 5 $.7  (cum $30.6)  
10 THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES $.6 (cum. $19.9) Reviewed

Though I'm nearly always pleased when a non-franchise non-genre drama wins big gold coin, The Great Gatsby's huge gross fills me with dread for our collective future. I  think the movie is admirable in some ways and a failure in others but the movie isn't really the point. I was holding on to Drama as my last refuge from those fucking 3d glasses and you know Hollywood will assume that it was the EXCITING 3-D that drove audiences to purchase tickets to a lengthy romantic drama. Worse still, Baz Luhrmann -- a true original who works so infrequently he probably only has about 3 more movies in him before he dies --  apparently has his heart set on doing Hamlet next... and with DiCaprio, too (meaning DiCaprio would have starred in 50% of his filmography). Annoying Fact: Hamlet has been filmed over 50 times for the screen and is revived somewhere on stage every year.

FOR GOD'S SAKE BAZ... AT LEAST PICK A LESS OVER-WORKED SHAKESPEARE IF YOU GOTTA HAVE THE BARD. THERE ARE DOZENS TO CHOOSE FROM!  AND P.S. YOU'VE ALREADY DONE THE BARD WITH LEO AND YOU'RE NOT GOING TO TOP ROMEO + JULIETFIND NEW TOYS TO PLAY WITH!

What did you see this weekend?  And are you, like me, weeping over the apparent future of Bazmark Productions?