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 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | instagram | letterboxd | deviantart 


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Entries in magazines (73)


Beauty Break: W Magazine October Issue

Behold an Inez & Vinoodh celeb-filled photoshoot they're dubbing "The New Royals" in the latest issue of W. Kicking it off with Scream Queen Jamie Lee Curtis below -- wasn't it great to see her again in Scream Queens? Ryan Murphy has his foibles -- I get that he's always trying to be "outrageous" rather than serious but there is an odd whiff of misogyny strung through everything -- but bless him for giving so many actresses of a certain age big parts.

More photogenic divas including Claire Danes and Academy Award Winner Julianne Moore* after the jump...

Click to read more ...


Beauty Break - Tilda as AnOther

Here's Murtada with a couple of gorgeous pictures of a movie star to brighten your evening. We’ve already seen the striking first still from A Bigger Splash, now come more enticing images to get us more impatient for this film. As if we weren’t already...

Tilda Swinton looks a bit different in these photos, no? Well there’s a reason for that. Because she’s Tilda Swinton she doesn’t just give an interview to promote her movie. She gives it in character. In A Bigger Splash Swinton plays a rock star, called Marianne Lane,  involved in a quartet of sex and intrigue with Matthias Schoenaerts, Ralph Fiennes and Dakota Johnson. For the AnOther Magazine cover story she conducted the interview as her character Lane. Here’s how AnOther put it:

This entire interview is a work of fiction co-authored by Tilda Swinton, Glenn O’Brien, Luca Guadagnino and Dave Kajganich, based around events in the film A Bigger Splash.

Another interesting tidbit from the interview is that Lane is mostly silent throughout the movie. Speaking to reporters at the Venice Film Festival where the movie played earlier this month, Swinton explained why,  “It was a moment in my life when I really didn’t want to say anything”. To explain Tilda's silence, Lane is recovering from a throat surgery under doctor’s orders not to speak -very believable for a rock star.

In the US we'll have to wait till May 2016 to see this movie. Those of you in London shouldn't miss it when it plays the London Film Festival next month.

What do you think of Tilda as Marianne?


Eddie Redmayne starts his Oscar Campaign

Here's Murtada on the first major magazine cover of the 2015 Awards Season.

Our current best actor winner is ready for his second straight nomination. Eddie Redmayne is starting his Oscar campaign for Tom Hooper’s The Danish Girl more than 3 months before the movie’s release. This week he covers OUT magazine’s fall preview issue with a lengthy interview that touches on everything from where he keeps his Oscar, to his privileged upbringing, to playing transgender artist Lili Elbe.

Perhaps what people are most curious about is how he handles the potential minefield of his casting as a transgender woman. Elbe, who had sexual reassignment surgery in 1930s, was one of the first known transgender people to transition and a movie about her life has been in the making for more than a decade.

Redmayne and his handlers are obviously trying to get ahead of any potential controversy. Hence the careful choice of the publication to which he gives his first interview about the film, and the inclusion in the article of advocates from the trans community like Paris Lees and Lana Wachowski. Lees is quoted and says about Redmayne's casting “Politically, it makes me groan. But if anybody’s going to do this justice, then I’m happy it’s Eddie. We had a good chat about everything”.

The interview is a good read and he handles some of the thornier issues with deft and careful thought. He comes through as humble while acknowledging his luck and privilege. He recognizes how divisive his portrayal of Elbe might become.

People were so kind and generous with their experience, but also so open. Virtually all of the trans men and women I met would say ‘Ask me anything.’ They know that need for cisgender people to be educated. I felt like, I’m being given this extraordinary experience of being able to play this woman, but with that comes this responsibility of not only educating myself but hopefully using that to educate [an audience]. Gosh, it’s delicate. And complicated.”

As for the movie itself, the verdict will be out soon. It plays at both the Venice and Toronto film festivals in early September. Venice comes first and that will be our first indication whether or not that nomination is happening as we’ve seen many an Oscar campaign start at the Biennale.

In the last 10 years, 8 men and 3 women have won the Volpi Cup for English language performances, a big percentage. Of those performances David Strathairn (Good Night and Good Luck), Cate Blanchett (I’m Not There), Colin Firth (A Single Man), Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix (who won jointly for The Master) went on to land Oscar nominations. Michael Fassbender (Shame) came close but ultimately missed. However the only winner this decade at Venice who went on to win an Oscar is Helen Mirren (The Queen).

Are you looking forward to The Danish Girl? Do you think Redmayne is a good choice to play Elbe?


Life Magazine Best Actress Covers, 1954

Researching 1954 for other posts, I came upon the realization that Life Magazine had featured not one, not two but three of the eventual Best Actress nominees on their covers that year in April (Grace Kelly who had a lot of films out that year including The Country Girl), September (Judy Garland for A Star is Born) and November (Dorothy Dandridge as "Hollywood's Fiery Carmen Jones"). It was "Hollywood's Brightest and Busiest New Star" vs. the World's Greatest Entertainer for the golden statue that year. The tag line to the Judy article was "Judy Garland Takes Off After Oscar" but it was not to be and Grace Kelly cemented the Princess effect with Oscar just a year after that had already helped Audrey Hepburn to her Roman Holiday win. (With Oscar, it rarely turns out that well for the older women, as you know)

This particular Best Actress race will haunt actressexuals forever as Judy Garland's A Star is Born performance is one of the greatest ever committed to celluloid. Audrey Hepburn (Sabrina) and Jane Wyman (Magnificent Obsession) were also nominated that year but did not get a Life cover. That's weird in Audrey's case as she was a regular cover girl. 

Finally while everyone knows that Dorothy Dandridge was a trailblazer this cover represents a twofer: She was not only the first African American nominated for a Leading Role at the Oscars (previous nominations had only happened in Supporting Actress) she was also the very first black woman to appear on the cover of Life Magazine!

Have you ever seen Carmen Jones? We've talked about it before.


Miles Teller?

I don't know quite what to make of the controversy over Miles Teller's Esquire interview other than to say "congratulations, Esquire for getting people talking."

Love the snarky tagline on the cover...

Newman? Brando? Mitchum? Nah, It's Miles Teller

Mr Teller thinks the profile is misrepresenting and his famous friends are mad about it. And yet it feels accurate based on past public douchiness. Defensive fans think the author Anne Peele is the dickish one. And, well, it does feel accurate that she went into this an angle. On the other hand maybe she came up with that angle after being presented with the evidence? Celebrity profiles aren't easy to write. I've had to rescue two interview / profiles in the past where the celebrity was not making it easy to make them look good (no I'm not sharing the names) and I'm proud of the way both pieces turned out but it might have been easier to go with a " ____ is kind of a jerk" angle.

Still, I don't think this is as damning as others do and it's a good juicy read (especially the part about getting dumped from Damien Chazelle's Whiplash follow up La La Land). And I don't think it's helping Miles to be upset about it. Stars rarely come off well when bitching about how the press presents them (think Russell Crowe / Christian Bale). A lot of male stars are, in fact, rewarded for cocky arrogance and bro personas. He's hardly an original in this regard so this won't turn people off of his talent.


Miles Teller is...
a dick...
dickish... but gimme
a "great guy". this is misrepresenting!
great in Rabbit Hole / Whiplash. Who cares what he's like off screen
... WHO?
Poll Maker



73 Questions w/ Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman does Vogue's "73 Questions" as she gives us very brief peeks at her farm. I didn't know that Vivien Leigh was her favorite actress! Or that she'd just throw out the title "Bewitched" without worrying about bringing up painful memories.

Also she is terrible at doing impressions. 


Vintage 1979: Kramer vs. Kramer, Sweeney Todd, Chris Pratt, Rosamund Pike, and More...

1979 is our "Year of the Month" and this post was way way too much fun to research. Before the main course of the Supporting Actress Smackdown (pushed to June 7th), let's marinate a little in the year that was. 

original print ad for Kramer vs. Kramer (available on eBay)

Jackie Earle Haley, Dennis Quaid, Dennis Christopher, and Daniel Stern broke out via "Breaking Away"


Oscar: Kramer vs Kramer*, All That Jazz, Apocalypse Now, Breaking Away, and Norma Rae were the best pictures nominees but they also loved La Cage Aux Folles, The China Syndrome, Manhattan, Being There and The Black Stallion

Golden Globe
: (drama) Kramer vs Kramer*, Apocalypse Now, The China Syndrome, Manhattan and Norma Rae (comedy)  Breaking Away*, Being There, Hair, The Rose, and 10

Cannes: Apocalypse Now AND All That Jazz (Glenn discussed this odd consecutive Oscar-adjacent business)

Box Office:
 1) Kramer vs. Kramer 2) The Amityville Horror 3) Rocky II 4) Apocalypse Now 5) Star Trek: The Motion Picture 6) Alien 7) "10" 8) The Jerk 9) Moonraker 10) The Muppet Movie

 Gene Siskel: 1) Hair 2) Kramer vs Kramer 3) The Deer Hunter 4) Breaking Away 5) Manhattan 6) The Marriage of Maria Braun 7) Nosferatu 8) The Onion Field 9) Time After Time 10) The China Syndrome

Roger Ebert: 1) Apocalypse Now 2) Breaking Away 3) The Deer Hunter 4) The Marriage of Maria Braun 5) Hair 6) Saint Jack 7) Kramer vs Kramer 8) The China Syndrome 9) Nosferatu 10) "10"

List-Mania continues with music hits, debut characters, new toys, and adorable "born in '79" people & things after the jump...  

Click to read more ...