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2 items from 2017

Filmmaker John Singleton Rides the Peak TV Wave to Recharge His Career

22 March 2017 10:05 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

The Uber driver can’t come fast enough for John Singleton.

The filmmaker is hopping between studio lots in Hollywood on a warm afternoon in early November as he tends to the two drama series he’s launching this year: Bet’s “Rebel” and FX’s “Snowfall.”

At the Lot complex just off Formosa, Singleton is working with longtime collaborators on the sound mix and other post-production touches for the two-hour telepic that will introduce “Rebel” on March 28. In a nutshell, the series, Singleton explains, is “ ‘Shaft’ with a black woman.”

After reviewing the progress on “Rebel,” Singleton, 49, hurries out to the street, searching for the Uber while talking a blue streak, punctuated by a distinctive high-pitched giggle when he really wants to make a point. He’s revved up about the promise of the series and the breakout potential of his star, Danielle Moné Truitt.

“I call it film noir with neo soul, neo »

- Cynthia Littleton

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‘Homeland’ Recap: Plot Contrivances Strain Credibility in Episode 9, ‘Sock Puppets’

19 March 2017 7:00 PM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Homeland” delivered its strongest episode of season six to date last week with the paranoia-fueled romp “Alt.Truth.” This week’s installment, “Sock Puppets,” falls on the other end of the quality spectrum thanks to plot developments that are too hokey to be believed.

Spoiler Alert: Do not read if you have not seen the March 19 episode of “Homeland.”

Claire Danes’ performance in the opening sequence is the best thing that “Sock Puppets,” written by Chip Johannessen and Evan Wright and directed by Dan Attias, has to offer.

Danes’ Carrie Mathison is meeting with a psychiatrist-type, an evaluation that is necessary before she can schedule a supervised visit with her daughter, Franny, who was taken away by a New York City child welfare agency a few episodes back.

The scene opens as if it’s an interrogation room, with Carrie shot from the shoulders up against a dismal-gray background. Eventually the camera pulls back and we see »

- Cynthia Littleton

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