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There was a time when two veteran straight actors such as John Lithgow and Alfred Molina, taking on the roles of a gay couple and their subsequent travails at married life would have been the tabloid equivalent of shock and awe. It still might raise some eyebrows, but Ira Sachs’ Love Is Strange is a testimony to societal progress in terms of storytelling. Now it will face the box office as the Specialty title platforms this weekend via Sony Classics. A real-life gay marriage takes the spotlight this weekend courtesy of Starz Media doc To Be Takei about the multi-faceted actor/activist and social media talent who is best known for playing Hikaru Sulu in TV’s original Star Trek. It will be joined by Millennium Entertainment’s Are You Here with Owen Wilson, Zach Galifianakis and Amy Poehler which will open day and date by Mad Men writer Matthew Weiner. »
- Brian Brooks
George Takei’s laugh is as recognizable as his voice, and you’ll hear a lot of both in the new documentary To Be Takei, which covers the 77-year-old Star Trek star’s life from his childhood in a Japanese American internment camp, to his journey from closeted actor to activist alongside his husband/business partner Brad Takei.
You also hear a lot of laughter when Takei takes our Pop Culture Personality Test. Watch the video and read a full transcript below. To Be Takei opens in select theaters and hits On Demand and iTunes Aug. 22.
EW: What movie did you see too young? »
- Mandi Bierly
George Takei (pronounced Tak-ay, not Tak-eye or Tak-eee - and don't you forget it!) has a speech he often gives. It's a formal speech about the persecution his family experienced in a Japanese internment camp during World War II, that briefly funnels into an impassioned urging for gay rights. At some point in there, Star Trek is mentioned. This also summarizes the new George Takei documentary, To Be Takei. Japanese internment camps, gay rights, and Star Trek - it's pretty safe to say that those who know Takei best from his popular Facebook comedy posts will be getting a different Mr. Sulu. But nevertheless, To Be Takei is well-edited and easily digestible, even for a straight Caucasian non-Trekker such as myself. Don't get me wrong, a sense of...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
It’s the voice. That mellifluous, basso profundo, deep down rumbling that issues words, sentences, entire speeches with such authority, sincerity and such relish that we cannot but pay attention. We hang on every word because we hear the intelligence, the humor, the irony and most of all the joy of someone who is in love; with life, with his partner, with acting, with being in the world and a part of human society, with the absolute joy of living. That voice is as recognizable and distinctive as Orson Welles, John Huston, Ed Begley or Roger Corman, that voice takes us by the hand and reveals to us a life lived full out, in every sense of the word; complicated, tragic, loving, generous and most of all fun.
It appears to be »
- Sam Moffitt
Director/writer Jennifer M. Kroot documents one of America’s most beloved national treasures, Star Trek star and civil rights activist George Takei, in To Be Takei. The actor is of course most known for his role as Hikaru Sulu of the USS Enterprise, though in recent years, he has become a recognized face in the equal marriage community in addition to supporting human rights in general. He was one of the more than 100,000 people of Japanese descent — many of them Americans — who were confined to internment camps after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. Takei starred in the 2012 musical Allegiance, based on this experience. This unique list of personal attributes, accomplishments and allegiances makes Takei the perfect theme for Kroot’s documentary, a light-hearted affair despite the weightiness of some of its issues. Fans of Takei, who love him not only as Sulu but also as a Facebook and Twitter legend, won »
- Emily Estep
When George Takei came out in 2005, he brought Brad Altman into the public eye with him. Nearly a decade later, Takei's now-husband is fully ready for his close-up. Beloved from his run as Sulu in the “Star Trek” movies, Takei's career largely went silent in the 90's and early parts of last decade, thanks in part to his age and the lack of quality roles for Asian actors. But when California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a gay marriage bill in 2005, Takei, then 61, felt a responsibility to speak out. At that point, he had been with Altman nearly two »
- Jordan Zakarin
To Be Takei is an entertaining and moving look at the many roles played by eclectic 76-year-old actor/activist George Takei whose wit, humor and grace has allowed him to become an internationally beloved figure.
It balances unprecedented access to the day-to-day life of George and his husband/business partner Brad Takei with George’s fascinating personal journey, from his childhood in a Japanese American internment camp, to his iconic and groundbreaking role as Sulu on “Star Trek,” through his rise as an internet phenomenon with over 6-million Facebook likes.
The documentary premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2014, played in St. Louis at Q Fest in April and opens in select cities, VOD platforms and iTunes on August 22nd.
Recently I spoke »
- Michelle McCue
Jennifer M. Kroot’s To Be Takei is an affectionate portrait of the hardest-working member of the original cast of Star Trek, George Takei. That’s pronounced tuh-Kay, not tuh-kai, as so many have misspoken it over the years, including but not limited to William Shatner, whose strained non-relationship with Takei — particularly Shatner’s absence from Takei’s wedding — is one of the film’s many running threads. Others include Takei’s recent Internet fame, his intimate partnership with his husband, Brad, how Takei’s campaigning for marriage equality contributed to them being able to get married in the first place, and, perhaps most poignantly, Los Angeles–born Takei’s time spent in internment camps as a c »
George Takei is an easy man to like. Even in his late seventies, the Star Trek actor and activist has seen a meteoric rise in the popular consciousness. His Facebook page, filled with wry photos and Lgbt-friendly articles, has amassed nearly seven and a half million followers. His face and voice is a familiar sight to anyone who has turned on a television set, either from his playful, purry exclamations of “Oh my!” in commercials or playing himself on programs like The Big Bang Theory. Meanwhile, he boldly went where few public figures had gone before: a path to become an ardent advocate for gay marriage equality. (Today, Takei is married to his longtime boyfriend, Brad.)
In the pleasant and entertaining biographical doc To Be Takei, director Jennifer M. Kroot shows a different side of celebrity. Beloved by more fans by the day, the 77-year-old look like the most down-to-earth celebrity in Los Angeles. »
- Jordan Adler
Anyone who follows George Takei on Facebook, has tuned in to his frequent appearances on “The Howard Stern Show,” or marveled at one of his amazing Amazon reviews (seriously, look them up), knows that the former “Star Trek” actor lives life with an unprecedented amount of zippy good humor, especially for a man well into his seventies. And this isn’t even taking into account his tireless humanitarian efforts, mostly on the subject of gay rights. For a tiny, elderly, Japanese man, he’s also an unstoppable force of nature. In the new documentary “To Be Takei,” it becomes clear that Takei is a man who defies expectations and subverts stereotypes at virtually every turn. It’s just a shame the movie wasn’t as progressive as its subject. Most will remember Takei as Sulu from the original “Star Trek” series, helming the starship Enterprise during the entire television run »
- Drew Taylor
The lineups for the Mavericks, Discovery, and Tiff Kids parts of the Toronto Film Festival were announced, wrapping up a series of lineup announcements for the Toronto International Film Festival.
With the added films, the festival’s entire slate is now a whopping 393 movies. Two hundred eighty-five of those movies are feature films, of which 143 are world premieres.
The Mavericks portion of the festival includes onstage discussions following the screening of each film. Do I Sound Gay? will be followed by a talk between director David Thorpe and sex-advice guru Dan Savage. Also premiering in that space is The 50 Year Argument, »
- Jacob Shamsian
Bill Murray is coming to Toronto folks. Actually, the film he stars in (Theodore Melfi’s St. Vincent) is having its official World Premiere launch at the jaw-dropping 285 feature film 2014 Tiff line-up. In the final batch of items we finally get the confirmation that 2014′s Palme d’Or Winner Winter Sleep (which gets added along with a trio of others to the Masters Programme) will show, and Tomm Moore’s highly anticipated Song of the Sea (among the four item line-up for Tiff Kids) also lands. Worth mentioning are the sprinkling of add-ons to the various other sections (Marjane Satrapi’s Sundance preemed The Voices, Matt Shakman’s Cut Bank and the world preem of Danis Tanovic’s Tigers) with a Studio Ghibli docu item being fitted into the Tiff Docs, but it is the Discovery Programme that finally takes shape.
The “up-and-comers” include Berlin Film Fest (and future Nyff »
- Eric Lavallee
Jennifer Aniston, Juliette Binoche, Steve Carell, Michael Douglas, Tina Fey, Jake Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman, Diane Keaton, Melissa Leo, Bill Murray, Bill Nighy, Al Pacino, Vanessa Redgrave, Adam Sandler, John Travolta and Kristen Wiig are among the array of stars expected to alight on the red carpet of the 2014 Toronto Film Festival.
The fest today revealed an impressive roster of helmers and thesps planning to boost their latest work in Toronto next month. And with the critical four-day opening weekend packed exclusively — as per the new fest policy — with world premieres and North American premieres of studio awards contenders, buzzy acquisition titles, and hot U.S. and international arthouse fare, you can expect media frenzies, flash mobs of buyers, and intense afterparty rivalries like never before.
Slates for Mavericks, Discovery, and Tiff Kids were also unveiled today, as were a handful of late-breaking adds to other programs, bringing this year’s grand total to 393 films, »
- Jennie Punter
News of Robin Williams’ death took the world by surprise on Monday afternoon. Celebrities have taken to Twitter to express their deepest sympathies and memories of the late comedian:
http://t.co/UEtjQ1f2zS— Zelda Williams (@zeldawilliams) August 12, 2014
I can't take the Robin Williams news. I've never cried over someone I've never met but I can't stop »
- Jake Perlman
George Takei has helped a Los Angeles-based production company crowdfund $100,000 to produce a web series, which will take place at a Boy Scout camp and spotlight the organization's discriminatory policies toward the Lgbt community. Also read: Disney World Pulls Funding for Boy Scouts Over Lgbt Ban “As a former Boy Scout myself, it pains me deeply that the Bsa still boots out gay Scouts when they turn 18. This web series will help educate and inform, as well as entertain. That gets a big thumbs up from me,” the former “Star Trek” star, who is openly gay and a gay rights advocate, »
- Greg Gilman
Click Here - Alternate Goonies Posters After years of war, the Federation and the Klingon empire find themselves on the brink of a peace summit when a Klingon ship is nearly destroyed by an apparent attack from the Enterprise. Both worlds brace for what may be their deadliest encounter. Actors: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, Kim Cattrall, David Warner, James Doohan, Walter Koenig, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols and Screenwriters: Denny Martin Flinn, Lawrence Konner and Mark Rosenthal »
George Takei — the former Star Trek actor and present Facebook phenom and Lgbt activist — invited press aboard the Queen Mary 2 on Monday for a screening of his new documentary, To Be Takei. The film, shot over a three-year period, details the many obstacles the 77-year-old had to overcome as a closeted Asian-American actor, and profiles his newly married life with husband and business partner, Brad. Photos To Boldly Go: 15 Key 'Star Trek' Moments For director Jennifer M. Kroot, a fascination with George grew from Star Trek fandom to activist admiration, and eventually to his autobiography,
- Ted Simmons
Mobile game “Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff” just achieved some cool new guest voices. Bryan Cranston, Patrick Stewart, George Takei and Stan Lee will join Ron Perlman, Felicia Day and Nathan Fillion in an update themed and timed to this week's San Diego Comic-Con. In the Fox-TinyCo. game, Comic-Con International is hosting a new comic convention in the Griffin's ficticious hometown of Quahog. When Stewie is transformed into an evil octopus monster, the town needs a new set of heroes to help fight back. Also read: Fox, Seth MacFarlane's Fuzzy Door Team Up With TinyCo for ‘Family Guy’ Mobile Game Enter the. »
- Tony Maglio
While “Star Trek” fans like to imagine the crews of their favorite starships getting along as famously off-screen as they appear to when the cameras are rolling, it just isn't always true. In particular, George Takei and William Shatner have famously not gotten along for years. See video: Bill Maher's Advice to Hillary Clinton: ‘Go Away’ On Friday's “Real Time,” Takei spoke with Bill Maher about it, and he didn't shy away from saying what he thought about the original Captain Kirk. “He is Canadian. And Canadians have a certain image of being even-tempered and friendly and all that, »
- Jason Hughes
Day 3 of Sdcc '14 marks the end of an era with "True Blood's" last panel. It's joined by fellow fangers "The Vampire Diaries," the witches of "Salem" and "Ahs: Coven," "Grimm," Sin City, "Constantine," Troma, and lots more.
Per usual, we have the horror highlights along with info on a few other panels that should be of general interest (plus a couple of things for the kids). Be sure to visit the official 2014 San Diego Comic-Con website for the full lineup.
Day 3: Saturday, July 26, 2014
10 Am - The Simpsons
Celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Simpsons-no gifts please-with creator Matt Groening, executive producer Al Jean, supervising director Mike Anderson, and director for life David Silverman. Topics include the new Treehouse of Horror, Simpsorama, a visit from Homer Simpson and much, much more.
Saturday July 26, 2014 10:00am - 10:45am - Ballroom 20
10 Am - Idw: Summer Blockbusters!
- Debi Moore
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