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"For the life of me I will never understand why Audra McDonald isn't bigger outside of Broadway." - Brian

"I will add to that list Irfhan Khan; he gets roles steadily, but in my mind he should be a household name." -Rebecca

"I'll also echo that Rosemarie DeWitt is one of the most talented working actresses, full stop. There is no other Best Supporting Actress of 2008." - Hayden


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Entries in John Legend (8)

Sunday
Apr012018

Beauty Break: He is Risen

Did you love Jesus Christ Superstar Live!? John Legend was in spectacular voice as Jesus and kudos also to Tony nominee (and one of my favorite Broadway stars) Norm Lewis as Caiaphas. But the scene stealer of the night was Tony nominee Brandon Victor Dixon who stole the show as Judas Iscariot. He was a glittering reminder, particularly in disco chainmail in the closing fantasy sequence (since Judas had already committed suicide), that live performing is a unique skill set. Imagine your average movie star trying to keep up that much physical and emotional energy for two plus hours while leaping around a stage and singing at the top of their lungs. If anything Dixon's energy only grew as the night wore on. Just stunning. (I'm not talking about his body, but that too.)  

Though Jesus Christ Superstar! was in some ways an odd dated musical choice for a mainstream family event (it's not remotely 'funny' for one)  it was the best produced "Live" musical since that became an annual thing. The set design and direction were amazing, culminating in a major wow of a finale. Still don't love the Andrew Lloyd Webber score and can't fathom why people doing the orchestrations for Lloyd Webber revivals never think to subvert the oh-so-70s electric guitar sound (also a weird issue with the 1996 Evita movie) but you can't have everything.

Since this particular production had all kinds of gorgeous men in fine voice and equally fine body, let's end this Easter weekend sharing photos of the hottest men to have ever played Jesus in the movies or on television before John Legend's go at it. The gallery is after the jump...

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Friday
Apr212017

Beauty Break: The Time 100

Chris here to start your weekend with some star gazing. Time Magazine's annual list of the 100 most influential people is here! While there's the usual assortment of world leaders, innovators, and executives (not to mentions some unsavories), it's the magic makers of the entertainment sort that catch our hearts here at The Film Experience. That ebullient Viola Davis cover to your left is nothing if not a factory for happiness.

The assembled talent and wavemakers run the gamut from Ava DuVernay to Sarah Paulson to Riz Ahmed to Constance Wu, the kind of future Hollywood we actually want to see. But the real fun of the lineup is the profiles written by other famous types about the honorees - Naomi Campbell paying tribute to RuPaul? Your icon wishes! Take a look at the photo set and tell us your favorites in the comments!

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Wednesday
Mar012017

Podcast: Oscar Afterglow... or is that Sleep Deprivation?

Katey phones in from Los Angeles to talk Oscar night with Nathaniel and Joe in New York and Nick in Chicago. What a crazy night that was, huh? Some of us didn't sleep much. We talk about that shocking messy finale, the history-making decision to name Moonlight Best Picture, debate which celebrity was having the most fun on the big night, judge the musical performances, name the craft wins we were confused by, and answer the age old question: junior mints or twizzlers?

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes. Continue the conversations in the comments, won't you? 

P.S. The podcast will return at the end of the month for a new season. If we get a few more patron saints this week I'll buy a professional mic. 

89th Oscars, Reactions. Season Finale

Monday
Feb272017

Oscar's Musical Numbers Fly Among the Stars

Dancin' Dan here, and I am thrilled to say that after years of mostly rather dully staged performances, the great Oscar musical numbers of the past are back.

We had planned a ranking of this year's performances, but they were all of such high quality that, feeling magnaminous, I'm unwilling to declare one better than the other.  Instead, a review of the musical numbers as they happened during the ceremony, in all their glory.

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Friday
Feb102017

Oscar Night Performances: Lin-Manuel Miranda and More

By Nathaniel R

With just 16 days until the Oscars more news hits each day. We now know that all five Original Song nominees will be performed on the broadcast but we can safely expect at least two of the songs to be significantly altered.

Lin-Manuel Miranda will perform Moana's "How Far I'll Go," which is a solo, with Moana herself Auli'i Cravalho so one wonders what kind of arrangement we'll get for the song as a duet. Nevertheless it's a safe bet to say that this will be a highlight of the show since the song is rousing and everybody loves Miranda...

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Friday
Aug072015

No Sophomore Slump?

Here’s Murtada with casting news for three directors’ sophomore efforts after the critical success of their debuts.

Insane chemistry retread?

DAMIEN CHAZELLE
While everyone is talking about Miles Teller and how maybe he was fired from La La Land, the new movie from his Whiplash (2014) director Damien Chazelle, that movie has been adding cast members. It's got a rather charming cast all told. Joining Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling in lead and J.K. Simmons and Ex Machina’s Sonoya Mizuno in support, are John Legend (Selma) and Rosemarie Dewitt (Rachel Getting Married).

The movie is about an aspiring actress (Stone) and a musician (Gosling) falling in love while trying to make it in LA. Legend’s role is unknown but we assume his talents as an Oscar winning songwriter will be used in some capacity in addition to his acting. DeWitt will reportedly play Gosling’s sister. Can you spot any family resemblance?

TOM FORD
Yesterday Michael Shannon and  Aaron Taylor Johnson were announced as the latest additions to Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals joining Jake Gyllenhaal and Amy Adams. There were reports a few months ago that Joaquin Phoenix was being considered for a part, which we'll assume is the one Shannon has now taken. Plot details are sketchy on this one beyond the fact that it’s based on Austin Wright’s 1993 novel Tony And Susan, and it involves two interlocking stories. One story is maybe a fictional one within the other. Ford has written the script and could have veered a bit from the book. Any readers of the book that can shed some light on the plot?

Will he find someone as talented as Quvenzhane Wallis?

BENH ZEITLIN
And  Benh Zeitlin is finally following up Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012). Reports appeared online that he has put up a casting call for child actors to appear in his new movie Wendy. Filming will take place in Antigua and the story is about “a young girl who gets kidnapped onto a hidden ecosystem where a tribal war is raging over a form of pollen that breaks the relationship between aging and time.” Hmmm, sound similar to Beasts, no? Other reports say it's loosely based on the Peter Pan myth.

Expect to see these three intriguing projects in 2016. Have they jumped to the top of your most anticipated lists?