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How soon into a movie or book or anything do you know you'll love it? When I first read The Hours, Michael Cunningham's transcendent riff on Virginia Woolf's "Mrs Dalloway" I knew as soon as Clarissa had entered the flower shop. With the film version I knew even sooner, perhaps having been prepped for the movie by the book but also because of the unfussy simplicity of the kick-off to this glorious triptych. (The Hours isn't always unfussy, of course, but note how the music drops out completely in this absolutely key moment when Virginia finds her first sentence.)
All we're left with is three women, three eras, three great actresses, and three separate temperaments.
Virginia: Mrs Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself.
Laura: Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself.
Clarissa: Sally, I think I'll buy the flowers myself.
How utterly perfect and succinct - Art, »
- NATHANIEL R
In Reaching For The Moon, Bruno Barreto navigates handsomely the love story between the Pulitzer prize-winning American poet Elizabeth Bishop and the Brazilian architect Lota de Macedo Soares, who designed Flamengo Park in Rio de Janeiro, making a Central Park out of a landfill with street lamps that recreate the moonlight.
In my conversation with Barreto on his poetic film, we discussed how Deborah Kerr, co-starring with Cary Grant in Leo McCarey's An Affair to Remember, is channeled by Miranda Otto and how Sydney Pollack's Out Of Africa made for the perfect pitch, even without Meryl Streep or Robert Redford. Barreto explained that Jane Campion's Bright Star on Keats and Christine Jeffs's Sylvia on Plath were not the way to go in the portrayal of Elizabeth Bishop and why Stephen Daldry's The Hours has the right intricacy.
Anne-Katrin Titze: You had your premiere of Reaching for the. »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
Helen Mirren was crowned queen of the London stage at the Olivier Awards Sunday, while compelling, canine-titled teen drama The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time emerged as best in show with seven trophies.
Mirren, 67, was a popular and expected best actress choice for her regal yet vulnerable Queen Elizabeth II in “The Audience,” Peter Morgan’s behind-palace-doors drama about the relationship between Britain’s queen and its prime ministers.
The actress, who won an Academy Award in 2007 for playing Britain’s monarch in The Queen, quipped that it was 87-year-old Elizabeth who deserved an award, “for the »
- Associated Press
London, Apr 29: Dame Helen Mirren was named the best actress at the Olivier Awards, for her stage role in 'The Audience.'
Mirren wore a glamorous black lace dress at the event.
In her acceptance speech, she paid tribute to the Queen who according to her had put in the "most consistent and committed performance of the 20th century. »
- Machan Kumar
Dame Helen Mirren has won her first ever Olivier Award. The 67-year-old actress picked up the prestigious Best actress award for her role as Queen Elizabeth the II in Stephen Daldry's 'The Audience' at the ceremony celebrating the best in British theatre at London's Royal Opera House last night (28.04.13). This is the fourth time Helen has been recognised for playing the British monarch, making history thanks to previous wins at the BAFTAs, Golden Globes and Academy Awards for 2006 drama 'The Queen'. After beating off stiff competition from Billie Piper for 'The Effect' and Kristin Scott Thomas for 'Old Times', Helen said she thought the Queen would be pleased and declared the royal deserved an award herself for »
In celebration of dragon slaying, British patron saint, and all around great guy, Saint George, we figured that the best way to mark the occasion of his death than by celebrating immortality through film and listing not 2, not 6 but 50 of the greatest British directors who ever lived. For extra punch, the day is also known as Shakespeare Day, marking the date that the world lost the Bard’s artistic genius, and there’s a certain pride you can’t blame the Brits for when it comes to this day.
So what better way to mark the occasion than to herald those British film-makers who have made a difference to cinema’s history, past or present? This year will mark the second British Film Registry poll, which will ask film fans and critics to vote for the British films and talents who deserve to be preserved in the Bfr vault, and »
- Nikola Grozdanovic
Exclusive: Mark Roybal, the well-respected president of Steven Rales’ indie production shingle Indian Paintbrush, is leaving. He is being hired by 20th Century Fox production president Emma Watts to become Evp Production. He fills the slot that Peter Kang left when he exited the studio and subsequently signed on at Paramount. I’m told that Roybal will oversee Gone Girl and the Matt Reeves-directed sequel Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes. Gone Girl, an adaptation of the Gillian Flynn bestseller, is the odds-on favorite to be the next film that David Fincher directs. He leaves Rales’ Indian Paintbrush in a good place. The company has established itself as a respected financier and producer of classy fare, from the Drake Doremus-directed Like Crazy to the Wes Anderson-directed Moonrise Kingdom and his follow-up The Grand Budapest Hotel. Also coming is Jason Reitman’s next film, Labor Day. Roybal’s exit is amicable. »
- MIKE FLEMING JR
Awarded an Oscar for her portrayal of the former Pm in The Iron Lady, actor pays tribute to her 'grit' and model as a female leader, while Arnold Schwarzenegger adds to chorus of praise and Ken Loach calls for her funeral to be privatised
The actor issued a statement after Thatcher's death at the age of 87 on Monday, which followed a stroke. Streep said her subject had been a pioneer – "willingly or unwillingly" – for the role of women in politics, allowing females from across the globe to dare to dream of leadership.
"It is hard to imagine a part of our current history that has not been affected by measures she put forward in the UK at the end of the 20th century, »
- Ben Child
Nominees for the 2013 Olivier Awards were announced today, including notable screen actors Helen Mirren, Rupert Evertt, Kristin Scott Thomas and James McAvoy for their recent stage performances. Britain's equivalent of the Tonys, the awards are presented annually by the Society of London Theatre to honor excellence in professional stage productions. In the best actress category, Mirren is nominated for playing Queen Elizabeth II in Stephen Daldry's "The Audience." She won an Oscar in 2007 for playing Elizabeth in Stephen Frears' "The Queen." Other nominees include McAvoy for best actor as the title role in "Macbeth," Everett as the leading man in "The Judas Kiss," Kristin Scott Thomas for best actress in "Old Times" and Imelda Staunton for best actress in a musical for revival of Stephen Sondheim's "Sweeney Todd." See the full list of nominees here. »
- Ryan Lattanzio
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Top Hat lead the charge in this year's theatre, dance and opera awards
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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is the leading contender at this year's Olivier theatre, dance and opera awards, with nominations in eight categories, including best new play and best director.
Luke Treadaway, the young lead in the National Theatre production of Mark Haddon's bestselling novel, is also nominated for best actor, up against Rupert Everett's portrayal of Oscar Wilde in The Judas Kiss, James McAvoy's Macbeth, Mark Rylance's Olivia in Twelfth Night and Rafe Spall in Constellations.
In numerical terms, the crowd-pleasing musical Top Hat gets the next biggest number of nominations – seven, including best actor and actress in a musical nominations for its stars Tom Chambers and Summer Strallen. »
- Helen Mirren, Mark Brown
The complete list of nominees for this year's Olivier awards, celebrating the best of British theatre, dance and opera
Rupert Everett – The Judas Kiss
Rafe Spall – Constellations
Luke Treadaway – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Helen Mirren – The Audience
Billie Piper – The Effect
Kristin Scott Thomas – Old Times
Best actor in a supporting role
Richard McCabe – The Audience
Best actress in a supporting role
Janie Dee – Nsfw
Anastasia Hille – The Effect
Helen McCrory – The Last of the Haussmans
Nicola Walker – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Mastercard best new play
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
BBC Two‘s five-part period drama Parade’s End leads the nominees for BAFTA‘s television craft awards with five. The adaptation of Ford Madox Ford’s novels started airing on HBO on February 26, and stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Rebecca Hall, Anne-Marie Duff, Rupert Everett and Miranda Richardson. It took mentions for production design and Tom Stoppard’s writing, among others. Also figuring heavily among the nominees are BBC Two and HBO’s Hitchcock drama The Girl, BBC One and BBC America‘s Ripper Street and BBC Two and BBC America’s cancelled The Hour. Other shows known to U.S. audiences, Doctor Who, Call The Midwife, Downton Abbey, Top Gear and The Thick Of It also scored nods. Olympics programming, inlcuding Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony and Stephen Daldry’s closing ceremony are nommed as is the fictional comedy series about the Games, Twenty Twelve. Awards will be handed out on April 28 in London. »
- NANCY TARTAGLIONE, International Editor
The Gavin & Stacey star defies stereotypes with her range of award-winning roles on stage and screen
Sheridan Smith used to flog burgers to bikers from a van off the motorway up north. It was, so far, the only job for which she wasn't paid to perform, but that didn't stop her. "Do you want sauce with that, love?" she'd ask. It's easy to imagine Smith delivering that line, one eyebrow rising to a circumflex, lips pursing, more than a hint of cleavage and loads of cheek.
But those who suspected that the 31-year-old actor was a kind of northern Barbara Windsor capable of only blonde sass, and could cite as evidence a decade of knockabout performances in TV sitcoms (including Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, Love Soup and Gavin & Stacey) and her award-winning turn as jilted-bimbo-turned-Harvard-hotshot in the stage musical Legally Blonde, have spent the past »
- Stuart Jeffries
It's curtains for this corgi! A dog that figured prominently in The Audience, a new play starring Helen Mirren that's currently in preview performances in London's West End, had to be replaced after missing the leading lady's cues on 16 different occasions. According to The Telegraph, 7-year-old Lizzy was supposed to enter stage right at the beginning of a scene, along with fellow corgi Rocky, then start exiting stage left before running back upon Mirren's command—but Lizzy just didn't want to obey! "She was excited the first three times," The Audience director Stephen Daldry told the paper, explaining that Lizzy followed through during her first few performances, »
Trevor Hogg chats with Susan Beth Lehman about the creative relationship between theatre and cinema as well as her book Directors: From Stage to Screen and Back Again...
“I was born in New York City, but raised in Texas and moved to L.A. when I was a teenager,” states Susan Beth Lehman who experienced some cultural confusion. “I started acting at the Alley Theater in Houston when I was 12. I have a BA in Theatre and an Mfa in Acting, both from UCLA. But La is a company town, so crossing over to film is very natural. After moving to the Philadelphia area some years ago, I started teaching in academia.” A cinematic adaptation of a Steven King story has left a lasting impression on the Assistant Professor of TV and Film at DeSales University. “The end of The Shawshank Redemption  is one of the most emotionally and visually »
Well, I didn't believe in it but I was seduced by it. At least for a while. The Audience – the first surefire, unstoppable hit of the year – has been created to disarm all comers. Helen Mirren sparklingly reprises her passive-faced but steely-eyed performance as a Queen who is both stalwart and wistful. Stephen Daldry, the man who once said he would not mind being mayor of London, and who would do a spectacular job, brings to the production the giant flair that he brought to Billy Elliot and An Inspector Calls. Peter Morgan's script nods at those not enamoured of all things monarchical, suggesting that underneath the perm there is something of a lefty brain. Real live corgis are unleashed.
Still, zinging moments are not finally enough to disguise the fact that Morgan's very entertaining play is a skinny thing, a string of sketches dependent on high-grade mimicry. »
- Susannah Clapp
Director: Stephen Daldry
Running Time: 140 Minutes (inc. 20 min interval)
A two-hour play about the Queen meeting with her Prime Ministers on a weekly basis is not necessarily expected to be of political substance, or heavy drama. Surprising;y The Audience manages to become an enthralling collection of vignettes which aims to entertain, and succeeds impressively.
The play sees Helen Mirren reprise her role as Queen Elizabeth II, having already blown the world away and won an Oscar with her depiction once before. Rather than stay safe however, Mirren dares to be different in The Audience portraying the Queen with that famous stern gaze, tilted head and perfect posture months away from her coronation. The performance is quite magical and Mirren’s ability to play a 20-something year old Elizabeth is truly magnificent.
The Audience is also incredibly funny as all characters are portrayed satirically. »
- Isra Alkassi
Peter Morgan struck box-office gold with his movie The Queen. He's likely to do so again with this play based on the private weekly audience given by the monarch to the prime minister. But I'd say that in both cases, Pm owes a great deal to Hm: in other words, Helen Mirren, who once again gives a faultless performance that transcends mere impersonation to endow the monarch with a sense of inner life and a quasi-Shakespearean aura of solitude.
As a dramatist, however, Morgan faces two problems. One is that no one ever knows what is said at these weekly tête-à-têtes since they are un-minuted. The other, more serious, is that in a constitutional monarchy, the Queen has no authority to contradict policy: simply, in the words of Walter Bagehot in the 19th century, "to be consulted, to advise and to warn", which would seem to rule out dramatic conflict. »
- Michael Billington
London -- Helen Mirren won an Oscar in 2007 for Stephen Frears’ film The Queen, her depiction of the long-reigning British monarch informed by a humanizing strain of self-doubt. She revisits that iconic role for the same writer, Peter Morgan, this time onstage, in The Audience. Her incisive performance again crackles with intelligence, acerbic wit and profound sensitivity. That she convincingly portrays Queen Elizabeth II at various points from her late 20s through to her 80s is further evidence of Mirren’s formidable technique. If the vehicle is not quite equal to its commanding star in Stephen Daldry’s elegant production,
- David Rooney
Kidman as Kelly: A sure thing for the 86th Academy Awards Best Actress roster? Could Nicole Kidman earn a Best Actress Academy Award nomination early next year for playing 1954 Oscar winner Grace Kelly in Grace of Monaco? Is it to soon to start with Oscar 2014 predictions? Hardly. After all, bear in mind that The Weinstein Company has already bought the North American rights to the Olivier Dahan-directed Grace of Monaco, which, according to reports, will possibly be released some time around Christmas 2013. Also, let's not forget that Kidman has already received no less than three Academy Award nods in the last decade, winning the golden statuette a decade ago for Stephen Daldry's three-part drama The Hours. (Pictured above: Grace of Monaco's star Nicole Kidman as Hollywood star turned princess Grace Kelly. Please scroll down to check out another cool Kidman as Kelly photo below.) Oh, but wait a »
- Andre Soares
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