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The Columbo actor recalls being turned down by the CIA in a 1996 interview
In early 1996, technically to help promote the film Roommates, I got to drink whisky and talk Columbo with Peter Falk in a hotel bar in a chilly Paris (many are cold but few are frozen, Falk said). My key question was whether Columbo like Falk himself is supposed to be one-eyed. Or are his eyes crossed, or squinting from the sun? replied Falk with a beaming face. Or is his eye noticing the suspects teeth mark in the cheese? Your guess is as good as mine.
Falks earliest memory was eating an apple while in hospital to have a cancerous eye removed at three years old. They wouldnt take me in the navy because of my glass eye, he fast-forwarded. So I joined the merchant navy who allowed monocular crew, if you worked in the kitchens. Youre »
- John Hind
John Cassavetes’ magnificent swan song, Love Streams receives the Criterion treatment this month, an addendum to the previously released five-title collection from the auteur. The film was surrounded and conceived amidst its own set of peculiar circumstances, and thus exhibits its own frenetic energy that sets it apart even within Cassavetes’ own oeuvre. After filming commenced, the director famously receiving a diagnosis that he would only live another six months due to cirrhosis of the liver. Unquestionably, this imbued his strange, wonderful, and reverential exploration of love’s complicated facets with a sharp melancholy. An adaptation of Ted Allan’s stage play, the film won the Golden Bear at the 1984 Berlin Film Festival, but wasn’t marketed properly and received a drowned out theatrical release. The film concerns the reunion of an estranged brother and sister, a pop writer Robert Harmon (John Cassavetes) and recent divorcee, Sarah Lawson (Gena Rowlands »
- Nicholas Bell
Written by Elaine May
Directed by Elaine May
Fellow Canadian cinephiles know that our local version of Netflix has a terrible wheat-to-chaff ratio. The thin library, coupled with the still-not-great Ui, makes it so that a disproportionately large amount of legwork has to be put into just browsing for movies. Then there’s what available. It’s unlikely that you’ll find a movie olden than you on the front page. This is because the collection sharply skews recent: at time of writing, approximately 0.01% of the films in the library were released before 1960. For comparison, about 58% of the films currently available were released this decade. Despite all this, though, I come here today not to bury Netflix Canada, nor to tear it a new one, but to provide fellow Canucks with a road map to navigating Netflix’s choppy waters. And with that, I welcome you »
- Derek Godin
Don’t look for any lingering Matt Smith-isms when Peter Capaldi debuts as the well-traveled title character in the Season 8 premiere of BBC America’s Doctor Who (airing Saturday, Aug. 23 at 8/7c). Executive producer Steven Moffat said he and his new leading man deliberately avoided picking up tics and habits from the “Eleventh Doctor” as they fashioned a regenerated “No. 12.”
Co-star Jenna Coleman recalled filming her first few episodes opposite Capaldi and, in instances where she expected the Doctor to “dance or be running around the console, »
Kevin Pollack does a really solid Peter Falk, if you were wondering. That comes in handy considering he's playing the titular Sharklumbo. For those of you who are fans of the sleuthing Columbo, Sharklumbo takes everyone's favorite detective and adds . . . well, a shark. I figure Shark Week is as good a time as any for this character to spread his fins. Is it a good or bad thing that this feels right at home on the SyFy network? Sharklumbo with Gina Gershon and Kevin Pollak from Funny Or Die »
- Sean Wist
Stars: Marcello Mastroianni, Michelle Presle, Salvo Randone, Cristina Gaioni, Andrea Checchi, Francesco Grandjacquet, Marco Mariani, Franco Ressel | Written by Elio Petri, Tonino Guerra | Directed by Elio Petri
When I think of the Italian film industry I often think of horror and the so-called Spaghetti Westerns but in fact the industry is bigger and far more impressive than that. In the sixties there was a golden era of film making, true to form Arrow Films under its Arrow Academy banner have released one of the most noteworthy movies of that time withL’Assassino.
L’Assassino is the tale of Alfredo Martelli (Mastroianni) a playboy antiques dealer arrested under suspicion of murder of his older lover Adalgisa (Presle). Protesting his innocence to the police his please fall on deaf ears as they increase the pressure on him to confess, convinced without a shadow of a doubt that he is the killer.
- Paul Metcalf
Hulk recently smashed Twitter, or at least his punier human half Mark Ruffalo did. The Avengers actor confirmed that he was in the early stages of developing a big-screen reboot of TV's most beloved detective, although the #RuffaloColumbo kerfuffle may yet turn out to be one of those superheated social media storms that flares up and is then immediately forgotten.
At the very least, #RuffaloColumbo has reminded the wider world how much it used to love Columbo. After the late Peter Falk's magnificent, sublimely modulated performances in 69 feature-length episodes, from the gritty 1970s through to the garish 1990s, it feels almost disrespectful to imagine anyone else in the rumpled raincoat. But the last ever Falk episode co-starring a fresh-faced Matthew Rhys from The Americans, »
- Graeme Virtue
He embraced the big green angry one for The Avengers franchise, but it appears Mark Ruffalo has his sights on a lower key character for the future. Taking to Twitter, he has addressed rumours about a forthcoming Columbo movie with a decidedly non-non-committal response:
@MysteryExec @garywhitta Ed Soloman approached me on this about a month ago. We are thinking a movie.
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) July 16, 2014
Though he’s shown a lack of detective work in the spelling of screenwriter Ed Solomon (who wrote Now You See Me featuring Ruffalo), the prospect of the legendary shambolic snoop being resurrected with a respected name is a bewildering yet enticing one. Forever associated with the late Peter Falk, the franchise has been routinely prodded with a stick over the past decade since ending in 2003. The A-Team star Dirk Benedict recently took the part in a stage production of 1962′s introductory play Prescription Murder »
- Steve Palace
@garywhitta That's an idea. Ed Solomon pitched the movie idea to me about a month ago. Does universal have an appetite for it is the ?.
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) July 16, 2014
The topic caught the attention of fans, who began mocking up posters of the actor as Columbo.
.@garywhitta @ManMadeMoon @MarkRuffalo just one more thing.. pic.twitter.com/kN0Mc9ym6V
— Liam Brazier (@liambrazier) July 15, 2014
Falk portrayed the detective on TV from 1971-2003.
He was famously told prior to his big break that he would never get work due to his glass eye.
Falk died in 2011 at the age of 83.
What happened next spilled out across several social media accounts and involved comments from Ruffalo himself. Essentially "Men In Black" and "Now You See Me" screenwriter Ed Solomon approached Ruffalo about a month ago about the idea of a cinematic reboot of Peter Falk's iconic TV detective which would star the actor.
Nothing has progressed beyond that though, aside from the public at large finding out about it and so far the reaction has been almost universally positive.
The original American detective mystery series is often considered one of the greatest small screen works of the genre. Sixty-nine episodes were ultimately produced and followed the friendly, »
- Garth Franklin
This is not quite a rumour, because there are comments from the stars involved, but it is also not quite news, because it is a mere whisper in the wind right now. Still, since this is a project that every right-thinking human being would like to see happen, we're going to go ahead and report that Mark Ruffalo is discussing the prospect of a Columbo movie with his Now You See Me screenwriter Ed Solomon right now, and if Hollywood has any sense they will greenlight this sucker at once.There's even been twitter chat about Duncan Jones directing it, presumably as R&R following the huge scale of Warcraft, which makes it even juicier a prospect, as if extra juiciness were needed. Although, again, we must stress that this is just some guys tweeting and not even remotely in the same country as an actual commitment / greenlight / production.The once and future Hulk is, »
Actor currently starring in musical comedy Begin Again welcomes suggestions on Twitter that he'd be a good fit to star in movie version of the much-loved detective TV show
It is not quite yet the story of how a major Hollywood movie was born on Twitter. But thanks to a flurry of tweets this week, the world now knows that Mark Ruffalo is keen on playing Columbo in a big-screen revival for the famously taciturn detective. And Twitter itself is even more determined to see it happen.
This exercise in the power of social media began when Gary Whitta, the English screenwriter of The Book of Eli and After Earth, tweeted his confusion that a Ruffalo-starring Columbo film was not already in production. "How is this not a thing?" he asked of The Avengers actor, who bears some resemblance to the star of the long-running TV series, Peter Falk, and »
- Ben Child
In this day and age of sequels and reboots, it's sometimes surprising that a property hasn't been revisited yet. One of them is the hit TV series Columbo, which ran in various incarnations between 1971 and 2003, starring Peter Falk as the brash L.A.P.D. homicide detective with brilliant deductive skills. While a movie reboot isn't officially happening, it may have gotten a big push forward by screenwriter Gary Whitta (After Earth), who sent out a series of tweets earlier this week, suggesting that he wants to see Mark Ruffalo as the new Columbo.
— Gary Whitta (@garywhitta) July 15, 2014
— Gary Whitta (@garywhitta) July 15, 2014
Look at this man, how is »
Twitter has already given the Internet countless surprise gifts, but organization during crucial political protests and viral videos have nothing on this news: Screenwriter Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli, an upcoming Star Wars spin-off) may have just willed a Columbo reboot starring Mark Ruffalo into existence simply by tweeting about it. Whitta had been tweeting about how Ruffalo would make for a great new Columbo were anyone to reboot the '70s and '90s series starring Peter Falk as a Lapd homicide detective always racing the clock to prove how a murderer pulled off their crime. It basically started as fan-casting, then Whitta roped in Moon and Source Code director Duncan Jones suggesting that he direct the new show, obviously with Whitta writing. That then spun off into...
- Peter Hall
Well, here’s a fun and unexpected bit of casting buzz that actually seems to make a lot of sense to us. The TV detective series Columbo ran for quite a large amount of time, starting out in the ’60s and continuing sporadically up until 2003, with the late Peter Falk in the lead role of the disheveled, affable and wordy detective, who discreetly ran circles around the crooks he was chasing while making them underestimate him with his ostensible absentmindedness. Now, we’re hearing that a Columbo movie may be coming down the pipeline, with an intriguing actor primed to take the lead role – Mark Ruffalo.
Before we go any further, this could turn out to be empty rumblings, but some very interesting tweets went out yesterday between screenwriter Gary Whitta (currently hard at work on a Star Wars spinoff), a user known as “Mystery Executive” and Ruffalo:
Oh hey, »
- Isaac Feldberg
Now here’s an odd pairing that somehow makes a lot of sense. The TV series Columbo ran sporadically for a period between 1968 and 2003, amounting to a number of mystery specials that were lead by Peter Falk as the titular disheveled yet highly gifted detective. The mystery series was beloved for its affable lead and engaging whodunits, and now it may be resurrected with a rather curious choice to take over for Falk: Mark Ruffalo. Screenwriter Gary Whitta, who is currently working on an unspecified Star Wars spinoff, got to joking on Twitter yesterday about the prospect of Ruffalo leading a rebooted Columbo. Much to everyone’s surprise, Ruffalo responded and revealed that he’s actually be approached about starring in a genuine Columbo movie. More after the jump. [Update: Unfortunately, Ruffalo has now learned that Universal owns the rights to Columbo. More below.] The Twitter exchange that lead to this fun bit of news went as follows: Oh hey, @MarkRuffalo and I are both repped by UTA. »
- Adam Chitwood
Social media is weird, you guys. It was already tough to figure out if people were being silly or sarcastic online -- is that winky face passive aggressive? What do the extra exclamation points mean? --- and in 140 characters, it can be even harder. Whether Gary Whitta ("The Book of Eli," "After Earth," an upcoming "Star Wars" project) was serious or just tweetin' around, his fan-casting of Mark Ruffalo as Columbo struck a nerve with folks who loved the mystery series and its adorably gruff star, Peter Falk.
Look at this man, how is this Not the Columbo of today? pic.twitter.com/Vl8heHmGve
- Gary Whitta (@garywhitta) July 15, 2014 Then Ruffalo, who is an active Twitter user, chimed in.
@garywhitta Lol. I have been working on it!
- Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) July 15, 2014 The idea started snowballing:
@MysteryExec @garywhitta Ed Soloman approached me on this about a month ago. We are thinking a movie. »
- Jenni Miller
Everybody knows that Casey Kasem was the voice of “American Top 40″ and countless cartoon characters for decades. But who could forget him on “Astrology for Young Lovers”? Or in “Scream Free!” Or as the host of “Shebang.”
In the 1960s and ’70s, Kasem, who died Sunday at age 82, logged roles in a string of B-grade independent features, from American International Prods. and others. He romped with wild bikinis, frisky teenagers, motorcycle clubs, “high on Jesus” types etc. He did a fair amount of on-camera TV work too, as a host and through gusts shots on “Baretta,” “Hawaii 5-0” and such. He was money on NBC’s “Dean Martin Celebrity Roast” specials, judging by the number of appearances he made.
See Also: Radio Legend Casey Kasem Dies at 82
But nothing plumped Kasem’s pocketbook like his commercial work. In 1973 his agent Charles Stern bragged that Kasem had voiced 600 commercials in four years. »
- Cynthia Littleton
Ghostbusters, the comedy classic that spawned a hit single, a sequel, a cartoon series and inspiration for countless fancy dress parties, celebrates its 30th anniversary today (June 8).
While we patiently wait for the long-in-development Ghostbusters 3, here are 30 things you may or may not now about the 1984 movie.
1. In the early '80s, Dan Aykroyd read an article on quantum physics and parapsychology in The Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research. That, coupled with his family's long-standing interest in the paranormal, served as the catalyst for Ghostbusters.
2. Speaking of Aykroyd's family, his great grandfather was a psychic investigator, his grandfather an engineer who created a high-vibration crystal radio to contact the spirit world and his father kept a substantial library of books on the paranormal.
3. The first script drafts of Ghostbusters focused on three characters who battled ghouls with wands instead of proton packs, while the action took »
A Woman Under The Influence 40th Anniversary Screening In Los Angeles
By Todd Garbarini
Probably the best known film of the late film director John Cassavetes’ career, A Woman Under the Influence (1974) is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a screening at the Landmark Theatre at 10850 West Pico Blvd. in Los Angeles, CA 90064 on Wednesday, May28th at 7:00 pm. The film’s star, actress Gena Rowlands, is scheduled to appear in person.
From the press release:
An Evening with
Star Gena Rowlands!
Director John Cassavetes'
A Woman Under the Influence (1974)
Wednesday, May 28 at 7:00pm
at The Landmark
A Woman Under the Influence received two Oscar© nominations in 1974—best actress Gena Rowlands and best director John Cassavetes. The film tells the story of a wife and mother whose unstable behavior leads her husband (Peter Falk) to commit her to a mental institution. At the time of its release, »
- email@example.com (Cinema Retro)
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