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Chris Evans, like a handful of other actors at this year’s Toronto Film Festival, is here to promote his latest career turn: director. It’s a role he’s not taking lightly and one he hopes to focus on primarily once his duties as Captain America have finally been fulfilled… in 2017.
For his debut turn, the affable actor, who is currently sporting a post-Cap beard, has purposely chosen a simple project: the movie Before We Go, written originally back in 2007 and set to premiere on Friday. The film centers on two characters meeting not-so-cute during one very long night in New York City. »
- Nicole Sperling
With an emphasis on networking and encouraging creativity among artists in all stages of their careers, the Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts offers actors something difficult to find at other NYC schools: a home. Tessa Laneve, director of Espa and new arts programming, would rather artists consider themselves members of a tight-knit community than theater academics. “This isn’t a place where you take a certain number of classes and then you get a piece of paper that says you’re an actor or writer or director,” she said. “That’s bullshit.” Instead, students of instructors such as Randy Graff, Neil Labute, and Leigh Silverman receive an education in collaborating with the best in the business. For actor Sara Minerd, the opportunities are endless. “The people they bring in are amazing and well-connected and it’s up to you to work those connections,” she said of the unpretentious faculty. »
Hopefully, you've had a few minutes to play around with our Fall Entertainment Generator. But if you're looking for straight and simple lists of things to look out for by medium, we'll be breaking them out separately. Here's a look at fall theater. September 9/4 Red Eye of Love Dicapo Opera Theatre Arnold Weinstein’s musical is based on his 1961 play about idealism in Depression New York, with sets by Robert “love” Indiana. The Money Shot Lucille Lortel Theater Neil Labute sets his sights on desperate Hollywood players. This can’t end well. With Callie Thorne and Frederick Weller. Waiting for Godot (Vartn af Godot) Barrow Street Theatre Beckett in Yiddish! The Wayside Motor Inn Signature Theatre A.R. Gurney’s Signature residency begins with this funny, poignant look at the fragility of the American Dream. 9/5 Bastards of Strindberg Lion Theatre Four new short plays inspired by Strindberg’s Miss Julie via »
- Vulture Editors
DirecTV is coming Full Circle again, renewing the relationship drama for a 10-episode second season, TVLine has learned exclusively.
Each season follows a group of adults whose lives are unknowingly intertwined. The series’ first season, which was set at a restaurant and written by Neil Labute, featured a cast of TV vets that included David Boreanaz (Bones), Kate Walsh (Private Practice), Julian McMahon (Nip/Tuck), Billy Campbell (The Killing), Minka Kelly (Friday Night Lights) and Robin Weigert (Deadwood).
Update, Monday 1:40 p.m.: McC Theatre Co-Artistic Director Bernard Telsey released a statement this afternoon confirming that Elizabeth Reaser (True Detective, The Good Wife) will replace Heather Graham in Neil Labute’s The Money Shot. “We wish her well,” he said of Graham. The show is still scheduled to begin performances September 4 at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in Greenwich Village.
Exclusive: I hear that just three days after a press meet-and-greet for Neil Labute’s new play The Money Shot, Heather Graham is parting ways with the company to focus on her film, Half Magic. The play, produced by McC Theatre, is slated to begin performances Sept. 4 at the Lucille Lortel Theater in Greenwich Village, with an official opening Sept. 22 for a limited run through October 12. Labute is McC’s Playwright-In-Residence; the director is Terry Kinney.
In the play, Graham (Boogie Nights, Drugstore Cowboy, etc.) was to play »
- Jeremy Gerard
Hell on Wheels, Season 4, Episode 2, “Escape from the Garden”
Written by Mark Richard
Directed by Neil Labute
Airs Saturdays at 9pm (Et) on AMC
“Blood will be spilled, that’s for sure”
Besides Elam’s (Common) survival, how exactly Cullen (Anson Mount) will escape The Swede (Christopher Heyerdahl) is season four’s biggest question. It’s what fans have wondered about since the end of last season, when the gates of that Mormon compound closed and Cullen was forced to marry Naomi (MacKenzie Porter). Now that he is a father and husband, escaping The Swede has become his top priority. Viewers have been expecting a lot, but few likely predicted what this episode delivers. But more on this later.
Hell on Wheels hit a series high last season and its fourth season premiere last week made it seem like it was going to continue that streak. Thankfully, “Escape from the Garden” doesn’t disappoint. »
As a writer, Neil Labute is a well-known flavor, but the bitter taste his work leaves in your mouth is most definitely not for everyone. He is known for throwing characters into dark situations and letting them wreak havoc on each other emotionally, physically and sexually. These characters, while usually quite intelligent and verbose, are often not very likable, and in many cases downright amoral. In Some Velvet Morning, there are only two of them: Fred (Stanley Tucci), a middle-aged lawyer who has just left his wife, and Velvet (Alice Eve), his beautiful former mistress who he has not seen in four years. When Fred arrives on Velvet’s doorstep out of the blue one morning, announcing that they can now be together, what follows is 82 minutes of conversation between the two former lovers that is played out in real time, feeling much more like a stage play than a film. »
- Lee Jutton
Hell on Wheels, Season 4, Episode 1, “The Elusive Eden”
Written by Mark Richard
Directed by Neil Labute
Airs Saturdays at 9pm Et on AMC
“Some people don’t want to be pulled out of the mud, Mr. Durant”
There’s a very strong argument to be made that along with Hannibal, AMC’s Hell on Wheels is one of the most underrated dramas on television right now. Over the course of three seasons, the show has moved from a historical drama to a deeply moving and fascinating character study that just happens to be set during the building of one of America’s greatest accomplishments, the building of the Union Pacific Railroad. Its muddy and vicious camp is inhabited by rich and thrilling characters, the storylines continue to capture the viewer’s attention, and our lead, a man often struggling with a dark world and the darkness within himself, is an endlessly fascinating and evolving character. »
The off-Broadway production will be directed by Terry Kinney.
The Money Shot will chronicle Graham as a former movie star trying desperately to secure a hit, Deadline reports.
Graham is best known for her work in Boogie Nights.
Heather Graham, absent from the New York stage since 2003′s Recent Tragic Events at Playwrights Horizons, will return to off-Broadway next month to star in the world premiere of Neil Labute‘s new play, The Money Shot, directed by Terry Kinney. The play is the season opener at Bernard Telsey and Robert LuPone’s McC Theater, which operates at the Lucille Lortel Theatre in Greenwich Village. Performances begin September 4, with an official opening on September 22 for a limited run slated to end October 12. Labute is McC’s Playwright-In-Residence. Graham (Boogie Nights, Drugstore Cowboy, etc.) co-stars with Gia Crovatin, Callie Thorne and Frederick […] »
As Nicolas Cage returns to Oscar-worthy form in David Gordon Green's extraordinary Southern Gothic drama Joe, we celebrate some of the strangest roles he's essayed along the way, from insect-munching Manhattanite to bee-wrangling bear impersonator. It's not always pretty, but it's never boring...
Vampire's Kiss (1988)
After he was a leading man, but before he was a very good one, Cage played that 1980s stalwart – the Yuppy Dick – in this off-kilter black comedy. Enunciating in an inexplicably anglicised drawl, like Loyd Grossman shouting through a tube, his character Peter Loew confides to his therapist: "I brought this girl up to my place, really hot, you knooooooow... Suddenly, this bat comes sweeping down out of noooowhere. I'll be daaaaamned if I didn't get really turned on!"
From here things only get stranger, with Loew exhibiting all the usual signs of vampirism: cringing at the sign of crosses/mirrors, shouting the alphabet »
The online movie watching service Fandor--under its new(ish) CEO Ted Hope, who took over the venture this January--is celebrating an important first this week: the premiere of Hal Hartley's new film, "My America." Hartley is the quintessentially indie writer and director behind "Simple Men," "No Such Thing" and "Fay Grim" who has also directed a string of theater productions, and "My America"--premiering July 4--is his first film specifically focused on theatrical performance. Commissioned by Center Stage (the State Theater of Maryland), the project consists of 21 monologues focusing on modern American life written by big-name American playwrights, among them Neil Labute, Marcus Gardley and Rajiv Joseph. Fandor is a curated online service for international and independent films, and Hope left the San Francisco Film Society for it in January, after saying that he wanted to "engage in total system reboot of the film »
- Jacob Combs
In a move not entirely unlike casting Michele Pfeiffer in a film role originated onstage by Kathy Bates (which is what happened when Frankie And Johnny In The Clair De Lune became Frankie And Johnny), Amber Tamblyn will play a woman who emphatically terminates her four-year relationship with her boyfriend when she finds out he’s described her looks as “regular” when the Geffen Playhouse presents Neil Labute‘s excellent drama Reasons To Be Pretty next month. Shawn Hatosy (Southland, Reckless) is Greg, the thoughtful-but-stuck-in-a-dead-end-job boyfriend of Tamblyn’s Steph, and they will have the pleasure of duking it out in the opening scene, one […] »
Director Hal Hartley ("Simple Men," "The Unbelievable Truth" ) brings us "My America," a film that compiles monologues from 21 playwrights about the collective American identity. Read More: Fandor to Exclusively Stream World Premiere of Hal Hartley's 'My America' The monologues are written by some of America's most renowned playwrights, including Neil Labute, Danny Hoch, Dan Dietz and Marcus Gardley, and are read by actors including Jefferson Mays and Kathleen Chalfant, plus Hartley regular Thomas Jay Ryan. Check out the trailer for the film below, which will be available on Fandor on the Fourth of July. »
- Eric Eidelstein
While we wait for Hal Hartley's next feature "Ned Rifle"—the finale to the "Henry Fool" trilogy that, according to IMDb, is already completed—the writer/director has another project ready to share. It's titled "My America," and a new trailer has arrived. The project is an interesting one, and quite different from what we'd normally see from Hartley (be sure to check out The Films Of Hal Hartley: A Retrospective). This time around, the filmmaker is exploring the American psyche via twenty-one monologues written by different playwrights (including Neil Labute, Danny Hoch, Dan Dietz and Marcus Gardley) and performed by a variety of actors including Hartley pal, Thomas Jay Ryan. And it's not just talking with rap, song, sad stories, and dramatic entries across the entire effort, and you can get a taste below. Appropriately enough, "My America" will debut on Fandor on July 4th. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Moviefone's Top DVD of the Week
"Masters of Sex: Season One"
Why We're In: There's a fair amount of onscreen sexiness, but the nuanced look at humanity and sexuality is what has made this a must-see cable drama.
Moviefone's Top Blu-ray of the Week
"A Hard Day's Night (Criterion)"
What's It About? This movie musical stars the Beatles as goofier versions of themselves, just as they're becoming the legendary band we all know and love.
Why We're In: Fancy digital restoration, fancy audio updates, interviews, a making-of doc, and more make this a must-have for fans of the Beatles or musicals or anything that's fun and cool.
New on DVD & Blu-ray
"300: Rise of An Empire"
What's It About? Based on Frank Miller's graphic novel, this »
- Jenni Miller
Now what would the medical profession be like without the dependable skills of nursing in cinema? Sure, the doctors get their lion’s share of representation in the movies but what about the nurses that serve them? What is so interesting about the portrayal of nurses in film is that they can be characterized beyond the compassionate medical maidens that the public associates them with on a whim. Motion pictures allow for big screen nurses to show some complexity beyond loving bedside manners and juggling bedpans. Cinematic nurses can be caring, comical, crazed, confused or corrupt.
Whatever the complication or consideration of these celluloid servers of health care rest assure that they are a glorified bunch in their devotion to the medical field. Whether flawed or favorable we will take a look at some of the top-notch nurses in film as cited in The Healthy Helpers: The Top 10 Movie Nurses. »
- Frank Ochieng
“What is my America?” That was the question asked 50 playwrights by Centerstage, which celebrated its 50th anniversary last year. Their answers were filmed by Hal Hartley, who is exclusively debuting the resulting feature documentary, My America, on Fandor for its Svod premiere beginning July 4. From Centerstage: Filmed by Possible Films, led by award-winning director Hal Hartley, these 50 monologues by writers including Anna Deavere Smith, Neil Labute, Christopher Durang, and Lynn Nottage explore our particular American moment—the ideas and people that make the country what it is today. The responses, ranging from the political to the personal, form […] »
- Scott Macaulay
Fandor has announced that it has the exclusive world premiere stream of Hal Hartley's latest film, "My America." Based on a collection of 21 monologues commissioned by Centerstage, the State Theater of Maryland, "My America" is a meditative piece that contemplates the current psychological fabric of American society. The monologues are written by some of the theater's most acclaimed playrights, including Neil Labute, Danny Hoch, Dan Dietz and Marcus Gardley, while the cast boasts names such as Jefferson Mays, Kathleen Chalfant and Thomas Jay Ryan. "I owe a large part of both my career and critical eye to Hal Hartley," said longtime producer Ted Hope, now CEO of Fandor. "So it is a true joy to host the exclusive premiere of Hal’s latest film." Read More: SXSW: Ted Hope Talks About His Plans for Fandor and How It Will Save Indie Film The decision to premiere "My America" via a streaming platform, »
- Shipra Gupta
Sony Pictures Classics honchos Michael Barker and Tom Bernard have been feted up one side and down the other lately. The duo celebrated 20 years of Spc in 2012 and have received awards from the Museum of the Moving Image and the Gotham Awards as of late. Tonight they will receive the Los Angeles Film Festival's Spirit of Independence Award as the love keeps pouring in. Given that we recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of Fox Searchlight — another crucial entity in the indie film space — it seemed like we were over due for a similar appreciation of Sony Classics' 22 years of output. The interesting thing, though, is that unlike Searchlight, there isn't necessarily anything outwardly identifiable about Sony Classics films as, well, "Sony Classics films." They all have a strong whiff of good taste but they don't have the heavy marketing footprint of some of the studio's contemporaries. Barker and Bernard's cinephile passion is always evident, »
- Gregory Ellwood, Guy Lodge, Kristopher Tapley
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