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Entries in Sir Ian McKellen (25)

Thursday
Oct062016

Break me off a link of that

Vulture Amy Landecker is Julia Roberts' voice double. This is amazing. Especially if you love the movie Duplicity
Geek Tyrant yummy yummy fandom pies
Coming Soon backwards told and trippy actually is commercial Strange Dr new the

Variety Robert De Niro's The Comedian will be getting an Oscar qualifying run. I guess Cinelou really wants to make these Oscar Qualifying runs their thing (see also Cake). Sigh. 
Women & Hollywood Emma Thompson and Stanley Tucci will star in the adaptation of Ian McEwan's bestseller "The Children Act" to be directed by Richard Eyre (Notes on a Scandal) -- ooh, sign us up. 
Awards Daily Oscar hopeful Loving about the famous right to marry case from the 1960s has released interracial and same sex emojis
Tracking Board Wolverine 3 gets a title, Logan, and a spirit of the beehive poster moment 
The Guardian another report on Hollywood whitewashing of Asian stories and characters. I love Billy Magnussen but am sad that he's now involved in this too. Apparently the Bruce Lee biopic Birth of the Dragon has been saddled with a white character as lead, sidelining Bruce Lee in his own story What the actual fuck?
Variety Ian McKellen is getting the documentary treatment in McKellen: Playing the Part  

Today's Video
Kristin Chenoweth sings the Game of Thrones theme song

Finally...
Winter is Coming looks at the top paid actors per TV episode via Variety. These are so weird to look at. The numbers rarely align with what you think of as pop cultural worth. Though if you're on a phenomenal success like Game of Thrones the two sometimes line up. One assumes the numbers have a lot to do with how long a show's been running and whether actors have been able to renegotiate. And also network pays more than streaming which pays more than cable, etcetera. For instance... how weird is it that Taraji P Henson as the key figure on one of TV's biggest smashes (Empire) makes the same figure per episode as Michelle Monaghan a less famous star on a show people don't talk about (The Path).

Tuesday
Jan262016

Finding Linky

LA Times the Academy has clarified some of its new rulings on membership due to confusion from within its own ranks - very useful info
In Contention Kris Tapley has some thoughts on that as well and depressingly mentions there is still talk of "expanding" the acting categories. This will be very hard for yours truly to stomach if it happens. Traditions are important (and no I dont mean traditions of discrimination - don't confuse the issue!). Changing an 80 year tradition of a set of five slots in no way helps diversity and may actually serve to make the Academy look much much worse sending an accidental message (you weren't good enough for five but maybe with seven -- oops you weren't good enough for seven either!) so I pray to all the cinematic gods that wiser heads prevail and they reject it. 
Fistful of Films... speaking of working through something by talking about it. Fisti takes on the subject of Leo's Oscar baiting through the years and denies it! Interesting and entertaining though he's totally crazy that his work in The Revenant will be the best leading actor win in some time. (Noooo. I mean, he's fine but good ≠ great) 

Guardian $17.5 for Nate Parker's Birth of a Nation a record Sundance sale
TFE ICYMI we were just discussing that film's buzz last night
Pajiba reminds us that Blade Runner 2 is about to start production so Harrison Ford is reviving another one of his classic roles
Pajiba also tries to decipher Kristen Stewart's much misquoted outrage producing "stop complaining - do something" quote by transcribing the interview. (This serves as yet another reminder why the outrage factory is so annoying and boring itself. People contradict themselves ALL THE TIME when they're talking on at length about complicated subjects and sometimes they dont even know what they're saying. And if you lift a few words out you can make anything look worse. Give everyone a f***ing break. Chances are they weren't trying to offend anyone.)
Comics Alliance I keep hearing competing things about Thor: Ragnarok. First that it's the "darkest" film yet (ugh) and second that it's going to be the funniest. Usually those things dont go hand in hand so who is telling the truth? But Taiki Waititi the new director has a good sense of humor (see What We Do In the Shadows) so let's hope for the second one.
i09 Speaking of Taika... the sequel to his great vampire mockumentary has a title We're Wolves (get it werewolves) but he has to wait until after Thor to do that.
Vulture Sir Ian McKellen would like to remind you that the Academy could be more inclusive with gay people too. Thank you Sir Ian, Hero.  
Playbill well that didn't take long. Hamilton, Broadway's new mega hit, has already announced its tour plans to kick off in 2017
Playbill Jonathan Groff's turn in A New Brain -- which I don't think we discussed here - has been recorded for posterity. He was just superb in that staged reading and Saturday Night Live's Ana Gasteyer was sensational as his mom... can we get them both in movie musicals please? 

Cinematic Corner reacts to a bunch of recent news but I'm linking up because it's always fun when Sati drools on Tom Hardy and she's so enthused about his enthusiasm over the Oscar nomination
Towleroad okay this is adorable. One of the dancers from Kinky Boots celebrates his 29th birthday by doing 29 death drops around Manhattan
Vulture has a longread on the fall of Ryan Kavanaugh and Relativity's bankruptcy
Variety Abe Vigoda, the film (The Godfather) and television (Barney Miller) actor has died at 94
John August... responds to that but encourages us not to dismisses the story as opportunism or embrace it as cautionary tale.

Today's Teaser
Awww, it's Ellen DeGeneres signature film role, returning to us in Finding Dory. In which we will find out if a character that was so wondrous in short comic relief doses can handle carrying a whole film...

 

Saturday
Nov282015

What a Link. What a Lovely Link

BFI Check out the Sight & Sound poll for 2015. Not pleased that The Assassin topped the immeasurably finer twofer of Carol & Mad Max Fury Road but it is what it is. Perennial critical darling peculiarities abound like Blackhat placing about Ex Machina. Oh please. I didn't hate the former like some but one must assume that's solely on Michael Mann's reputation, the way some filmmakers get a competition spot at Cannes simply because they directed something.
HuffPo Reid Ewing from Modern Family talks about body dysmorphia and getting frequent plastic surgery
The Guardian on a Carol gift-wrapping promotion - it breaks my heart that people keep thinking this is a watch it on DVD film. It's SO breathtakingly cinematic. GO TO THE THEATER.
/Film Gremlins may take a page from Jurassic World/Creed and continue the story decades later

 

Coming Soon latest Star Wars The Force Awakens news & rumors if you're into that sort of thing. We made a very conscious choice not to watch anything beyond the teaser or to cover it until ti opens. We want to preserve the mystery and thus the possible joy.
Antagony & Ecstasy reviews the original Star Wars trilogy
MNPP Matt Bomer may play The Last Tycoon for Amazon
Vanity Fair Ryan Gosling may play Neil Armstrong for Damien Chazelle
In Contention how the critic awards can boost players in the Oscar race
/Film there are competing Evel Knievel movies on the way one from (possibly Martin Scorsese) and one from Channing Tatum. Do kids today know who Knievel is?
AV Club Michael B Jordan is up for another Creed movie. The movie is set to make back its budget this Thanksgiving weekend
Serving Cinema in defense of Angelina Jolie's By the Sea
Lip Sync Battle Anthony Mackie "2 Legit 2 Quit" versus Joseph Gordon-Levitt's "Rhythm Nation"
New York Times ABC actually cancelled a show! But this is a rare with TV's new ratings math
Towleroad two Brazilian actors share a kiss on live tv to combat homophobia. Our Brazilian readers should tell us if these two are as famous as this article implies.
The Hollywood Reporter has an articles about LGBT cinema losing its edge. That's a topic that can be argued about certainly but Carol is an absolutely terrible example since Todd Haynes hasn't lost one iota of his power or daring and the "frostiness" that people complain about with that movie is hardly pandering, you know.
Kevin O'Keefe skewers the article with one well placed barb.

 

 

"Category Fraud" Has Gone Mainstream
I can't remember if I coined the term -- let's just say I did -- but I've been preaching against its evil like an obnoxiously pious mad prophet the entire time I've been Oscar blogging... which is quite a long time now. I've been seeing articles about it everywhere this year including this new one from The Hollywood Reporter. You know how when you love an obscure band and then everyone "discovers" them after the fact and you feel kind of betrayed? That. Don't get me wrong: I'm glad people are paying attention now -- perhaps we reached some sort of peak fraudulence where it became impossible to deny the problem anymore? But I also do not like that articles about this never address the media's own hand in creating this monster. (For this next sentence you'll remember that Nathaniel is playing the role of a mad pious prophet in this story and forgive his superiority complex). Other than The Film Experience practically every awards pundit /  site has actively encouraged this 'all fraud all the time / end justifies the means world we're living in by regularly rationalizing leading roles as supporting in articles and actively encouraging studios and publicists to pursue fraudulent campaigns for "better Oscar chances"

Weekend Watch
Jake Gyllenhaal discussses his progressive upbringing and Brokeback Mountain. I love this. Yes, we'll be celebrating the movie soon for its 10th anniversary in December.

Sir Ian McKellen talks Dame Maggie Smith and Oscar good luck charms from his stage show in Los Angeles last weekend "Women I've Filmed With"

 

Sunday
Nov152015

Sir Ian McKellen Charms the Brits. And Other Oscar Stories.

Nathaniel again in my last post directly from LA. I'll have to leave you in the good hands of Team Experience tomorrow as I'm travelling back across the country to home base NYC. This afternoon I had the pleasure of attending a Brit-heavy brunch with various BAFTA & Academy voters to honor Sir Ian McKellen in Mr. Holmes, one of the year's biggest indie hits.

Look at the starry talent that showed up to support him...

Jane Seymour, Sir Ian, Sir Patrick, Kathy Bates, and The Lovely Laura Linney

Did you know that Jane Seymour and Sir Ian McKellen go all the way back to 1980 together, having co-starred in Amadeus (1980) on Broadway? She was wife to Tim Curry's Mozart and McKellen was Salieri (and won the Tony) but none of the stage cast were used in Milos Forman's Oscar-devouring film version in 1984. I was able to say hello to all the actresses. I informed Kathy Bates of her devout fanbase at The Film Experience and she credited American Horror Story for giving her new fans but admitted the bloodiness of the show was a bit much for her (same) and that drinking the fake blood was disgusting. We even talked about her Oscar-winning work in Misery as I shared earlier today on twitter.

 

Longtime readers, particularly "par3182" who named her thus, will be happy to know that "The Lovely Laura Linney" is now aware that at The Film Experiencce we only ever refer to her by that full title and have for years. One may not even say 'Laura Linney' in casual conversation as it must be properly heralded with 'The Lovely'. She beamed with all the apple-cheeked radiance we've all fallen for repeatedly over the years.

McKellen's close friend Sir Patrick Stewart was also on hand. Though McKellen singled several attendees of the party out beautifully as he spoke to the crowd, about his fellow X-Man he joked...

Patrick Stewart and I are practically married at this point. But his wife is here so we won't talk about that."

I personally admitted to Sir Patrick that I keep almost going as him for Halloween. "That is a terrible idea!" he proclaimed, destroying my future dreams of Professor Xavier drag.

As for the man of the hour, Sir Ian McKellen was just as funny, warm, and winkingly arrogant as you could expect. 'I'm very good in the picture!' he agreed without shame with those twinkling eyes while chatting. He was a delight to talk to and especially gracious to fellow actors.

I told the twice Oscar nominated actor that I thought the makeup work to age him up for Mr. Holmes was incredible -- the actor is a spry 76 but he plays Sherlock Holmes as a frail 90something. He agreed and mentioned that "the big hooter" specifically helped him in feeling like someone else. Looking into the mirror after hair and makeup and seeing the character taking shape is a great help. 'Your body starts to join in,' he remarked hunching over to recall the aging affect. When it comes to actors and transformation, he quipped  'I knew what DNA was before the scientists!' 

related: current best actor chart | more on Sir Ian

Sunday
Oct182015

London Film Fest Hoopla: Cate Blanchett, The Witch, Female Directors

The BFI London Film Festival wrapped up yesterday and with festival wraps (well, the juried festivals) come awardage. The big news for our actressy purposes was of course Galadriel receiving her BFI fellowship from Gandalf. More hoopla after the jump...

Click to read more ...