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She was the queen of the 1970s blaxploitation movies. But being a black woman in Hollywood hasn't been Pam Grier's toughest fight. She talks to Shahesta Shaitly about rape, cancer and finding peace with her horses in the country
Pam Grier has spent the morning grooming and feeding her beloved horses, drinking green tea and working on her farm in Denver, Colorado. "I grew up in an urban environment and on military bases, but now my life is based on this ranch. My nickname is Mother Earth these days!" she says, talking at high speed in a lilting accent that combines California and the South.
It comes as a surprise to find that the 1970s "Queen of Blaxploitation" – she starred in more than 20 films between 1971 and 1981 – now drives a John Deere tractor and spends her time rescuing and rehabilitating horses for a therapeutic riding programme. "I'm rural now, and love it, »
- Shahesta Shaitly
Directed by Takeshi Kitano
Takeshi Kitano returns to his yakuza-themed roots with a rollicking, violent, entertaining black comedy about gangster family values.
Gangsters are, and always have been, part of international cinematic language. From The Public Enemy to The Departed, via the likes of Rififi, Tokyo Drifter, Foxy Brown, and Two Hands, audiences over the decades have engaged enthusiastically with criminal anti-heroes whose goals don’t get any more complicated than blowing each other up. Bloody, internecine warfare unleashed across a cityscape is guaranteed to fill seats. Kitano’s specific goal with Outrage was this brand of genre entertainment – he started the script process by outlining a series of violent kills, then figured out how to weave them into the plot – and from the start this is a tale of action, not redemption. Don’t expect any moral framework, »
- Karina Wilson
It’s funny how time can alter your perception of a film. When I first saw Jackie Brown I wasn’t prepared for it. Part of me was expecting more of what I saw in Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, but what I got was something completely different. Jackie Brown is Quentin Tarantino’s most mature and sophisticated film by some distance, and remains so even to this day. In fact, it took a few viewings to fully appreciate just how good it actually is.
I don’t think that I’m alone in this, either. Only Death Proof has a lower rating on IMDb out of Tarantino’s films, so to some extent it still lacks the respect that many of his other films receive. »
With the latest addition of Kerry Washington, the already impressive cast of Quentin Tarantino's next movie, "Django Unchained," just got a little more impressive. Throw in his other recent hire -- Don Johnson -- and it's clear that the auteur is up to his usual quirky casting tricks. Tarantino has always been known for his, ah, interesting choices with his ensemble casts, pulling from both mainstream Hollywood actors and the dustiest corners of pop culture, and resurrecting the careers of fallen stars.
"Django Unchained" is no exception, but how does it stack up with the rest of Tarantino's oeuvre? It's got some tough competition from what have become iconic ensembles, so let's take a look at where the new cast stands in comparison.
The Rundown: The color-coded cast set the tone for the rest of Tarantino's movies. »
- Kevin P. Sullivan
Pam Grier is an unlikely feminist heroine. After starring in exploitation films like “The Big Bird Cage,” “Coffy” and “Foxy Brown,” Grier alternated between movies, TV and theater as a versatile and formidable leading lady. In 1997, Quentin Tarantino both paid tribute to her influence and revived her career by casting her in the title role of “Jackie Brown,” where she played a savvy stewardess who hatches an ingenious escape »
- Todd Gilchrist
When you’ve already directed the best film of the ’90s, what can you possibly do for an encore? That was the dilemma Quentin Tarantino faced after he delivered Pulp Fiction. What he came up with was a two-and-a-half hour homage to ’70s Blaxploitation flicks called Jackie Brown, starring that grindhouse genre’s one-time kick-ass queen, Pam Grier. While Jackie Brown received mixed reviews when it hit theaters in 1997, anyone who’s seen the new Blu-ray edition of the film (which hits stores today) will agree that it’s aged like a fine wine. If anything, it’s a better »
- Chris Nashawaty
One might expect a film with the title of Machine Gun Preacher to fall squarely in the ranks of exploitation films like Foxy Brown, or the more recent Machete, and Marc Forster’s new film does contain elements of that genre. The film’s lead character, Sam Childers (Gerard Butler), knocks his wife around after he’s released from prison, hangs with a fellow heroin junkie at a biker bar, robs a drug dealer at gunpoint and then proceeds to repeatedly stab a hitchhiker. That’s just during the first 15 minutes. But the true life, fact-is-stranger-than-fiction story of what Childers does next elevates »
Actress Pam Grier has had an incredibly diverse career, starring in 1970s blaxploitation classics such as Coffy and Foxy Brown to 1990s cult classics such as Mars Attacks and Jawbreaker. For many movie fans, though, Pam Grier will always be remembered as Jackie Brown, the title character in Quentin Tarantino's fantastic crime drama, which makes its Blu-ray debut October 4. I recently had the honor to speak with Pam Grier about her experiences making Jackie Brown, and much more. Here's what she had to say below.
Hi Pam. How are you doing today?
Quentin Tarantino has said that Pam Grier may have been cinema's first female action star, and for much of the '70s she kicked butt as iconic characters in "Coffy," "Foxy Brown," "Sheba Baby," "Friday Foster" and many other genre classics.
It was only natural that Tarantino rewrote the lead character in Elmore Leonard's "Rum Punch" for Grier in the 1997 adaptation "Jackie Brown." In Tarantino's homage to '70s blaxploitation cinema, Grier plays an airline stewardess conflicted by the demands of the law, her gun-running boss and her new love. The role fit Grier like Jackie's fine suit and introduced the actress to a whole new generation of fans.
To mark the release of "Jackie Brown" on Blu-ray, we sat down with the hard-working film goddess as she reflected on the legacy of "Jackie Brown," why she thinks blaxploitation equals empowerment, and her own survival instinct.
Quentin Tarantino was »
- Robert DeSalvo
Can women over 40 be awesome action heros like all those guys over 60 still are?
Amidst Sigourney Weaver's recent disappointing statements about thinking she's too old to be playing Ripley in any further Aliens franchise movies and the awesome news that Linda Hamilton may star in a Terminator 5 film, we've got our panties all fucked up because we've been debating how much we love action heroines, and how many of them are over 40 now. We don't think that's a bad thing - in fact, we think women over 40 are awesome action heroes and we think you do too. We think you'd be out in theaters in masses to see Ripley or Sarah Connor tear shit up once again, and so would we.
In a recent interview with Moviehole, filmmaker Justin Lin discussed the new Terminator movie he's producing, and seems to want Hamilton to reprise her role as the tough-as-nails freedom-fighter/mom Sarah Connor, »
- Megan and Heidi
Foxy Brown must be over the moon today. A Brooklyn judge has dismissed a contempt of court charge against the Brooklyn Don Diva for allegedly violating a restraining order when she mooned her neighbor last summer. The case came to a halt after dismayed prosecutors revealed the purported victim refused to testify against the rapper. The 32-year-old Brown, real name Inga Marchand, was busted last July for violating an order of protection taken out against her by Arlene Raymond, whom Foxy was accused of hitting with a Blackberry back in 2007 as part of an ongoing feud between the two. In the latest run-in, Raymond accused the rapper of not only antagonizing and shouting obscenities at her when the two crossed »
Foxy Brown received a Major scolding by a NY judge yesterday after she showed up two hours late for court -- but the singer's lawyer tells TMZ the timing error was completely his fault. Salvatore Strazullo says he told Foxy Brown to be at court at 11:30 Am -- two hours after her scheduled 9:30 Am appearance -- insisting he had arranged with the Assistant District Attorney for the late arrival. Foxy is in court »
- TMZ Staff
In an impressive show of state pride and clever programming, the Alamo Drafthouse, the much-lauded Austin-based movie theater chain run by the same folks behind nerd art and t-shirt purveyor Mondo and annual genre film festival Fantastic Fest, is doing a roving summer screening series called The Rolling Road Show. Each of its ten lovely Texas cult classic films, from The Searchers to Bonnie and Clyde to Blood Simple, will be shown outdoors in a town related to the film. To promote the series, the Drafthouse worked with artist Jason Munn to create new, graphically minimalist posters for these films, such as the beautiful update on The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, below.
Poster remakes have become popular among rising young illustrators in the last couple of years, so the Rolling Road Show’s tactic, while not entirely novel, is timely in capitalizing on a bit of a phenomenon. The fixation on »
- Farihah Zaman
Ashley’s skin glistened brightly — with just the right amount of shine! Her makeup artist tells us how you can match her lovely look!
Ashley Greene is a proud mark cosmetics brand ambassador, so for the 2011 Met Ball, celebrity makeup artist Matthew VanLeeuwen, used mark products to get her amazing glow! Read more to see how he did it!
Matthew gives us the scoop on how to re-create the Twilight star’s makeup, from eyes and lips to face and cheeks:
”I prepped Ashley’s skin by applying mark For Goodness Face Antioxidant Skin Moisturizing Lotion Spf 30 all over her face to create a nice, clean canvas.” “Using the mark Eye Shadow Brush, I applied I-mark Custom Pick Eye Shadow in Whisper all over her eyelids as a base. I then added mark I-Mark Custom Pick Eye Shadow in Tiki all over the lids and into the creases »
Recently I had the pleasure of speaking with Scholar and University of Georgia Professor, Jonathan Gayles, about his upcoming documentary entitled — Shaft or Sidney Poitier: black masculinity in comic books. The Professor’s film is a retrospective on the comic book industry, as Black [male] Superheroes emerged during the late 60′s to mid 70′s. The Profession had a lot to say about the industry and how like most mediums we discuss here at Shadow and Act, there was [and is] a pervasive trend of defining black men and women by these very narrow characteristics.
Check out my interview with Professor Gayles below and don’t forget to share your thoughts on this fascinating subject!
Monique: You have a Phd in African American studies and Applied Anthropology, I could imagine that having that educational background provided you a wealth of tools on how to approach this subject matter; but given your childhood love »
“Have no fear; Pam Grier is here…a chick with drive, who don’t take no jive.”
The trailer for Coffy (1973)
She’s wearing a short dress that barely covers her curvaceous brown body. Her hair is styled in an impressive afro. In the darkness of the bedroom she purrs in front of us – sexual and wanting. But as she turns we see she is no longer so willing. Her eyes become steel, we see a gun:
“This is the end of your rotten life you mother fucking dope pusher,” says Coffy and a squeeze of the trigger sprays the gangster’s head all over the wall.
Pam Grier had arrived.
1973s Coffy didn’t just make Grier a star; it turned her into an icon. Written and directed by Jack Hill, the film offered one of the blaxsploitation genre’s first female protagonists. Indeed here was a rare action hero, »
- Tom Fallows
Foxy Brown was reportedly ejected from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship following an angry outburst. It is thought that Brown became upset when she missed a scheduled manicure appointment at the ship's salon and employees were too busy to fit her in upon her late arrival, according to TMZ. After allegedly yelling at the salon staff, the musician was escorted back to her room by security and eventually ejected from the ship last Wednesday when the boat docked in the Cayman Islands for a scheduled stop. She was aboard the Royal Caribbean ship to perform (more) »
- By Justin Harp
Full story at RadarOnline
Get more "Extra" Scoop headlines for Tuesday, March 29!
Jessica Simpson and Fiance: 'We Might Elope' -- PopEater
Lea Michele Walks Away Unscathed After Car Accident -- People
Kate Hudson's Second Pregnancy is a Struggle -- OKMagazine
Rapper Foxy Brown Kicked »
Foxy Brown 's fingernails have once again landed the singer in hot water -- this time, she was booted off a Royal Caribbean cruise because she flipped out after missing her at-sea manicure appointment ... TMZ has learned. Passengers on the cruise tell TMZ, Foxy set up a nail appointment on the cruise ship last Monday -- a day after the cruise took off -- and showed up three hours late. We're told the people at »
- TMZ Staff
The week is over, and for the first time in a long time, there aren't any awards shows demanding your attention on your days of rest. So you should feel free to catch up with any Oscar-winning films you might have missed, listen to R.E.M.'s excellent new album Collapse Into Now or simply make yourself a series of delicious omelets while watching old episodes of "Deadwood" (the latter idea probably applies to a very small percentage of you, but that doesn't make it any less good an idea). In the meantime, click through the links below to catch up with all the greatness you might have missed on this week's MTV Newsroom blog, including a boatload of music video premieres and a shocking number of entries about metal.
» The cast of "Dancing With the Stars" was announced earlier this week, and it's one of the most evenly »
- Kyle Anderson
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