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Angela Robinson to Receive Inaugural Mind the Gap Award

Robinson: JoBlo Movie Trailers/YouTube

Angela Robinson earned raves for her depiction of “Wonder Woman’s” origin story in “Professor Marston & The Wonder Women,” and now the writer-director is set to be honored for the biopic. A press release from the California Film Institute announced that Robinson will receive the inaugural Mind the Gap (MtG) Award “for her groundbreaking work” in creating the film.

Inspired by true events, “Professor Marston & The Wonder Women” tells the story of “Wonder Woman” creator Dr. William Moulton Marston (Luke Evans) and the women who inspired the iconic character: his wife Elizabeth (Rebecca Hall) and the married couple’s lover, Olive Byrne (Bella Heathcote). The drama sees William, Elizabeth, and Olive fighting to bring the powerful heroine to the masses — and fighting for their right to have an unconventional relationship despite intense social pressure and judgment.

“I’m really happy that it’s being embraced
See full article at Women and Hollywood »

Wonder Women Rises in Professor Marston Posters, Release Date Announced

Wonder Women Rises in Professor Marston Posters, Release Date Announced
Annapurna Pictures has released three new character posters for Professor Marston & the Wonder Women, a biopic highlighting the unconventional creation of Wonder Woman by its creator William Marston, and the two women who inspired him. The new posters feature Luke Evans as the Wonder Woman creator, Professor William Marston, Rebecca Hall as his wife Elizabeth Marston and Bella Heathcote as their mutual love, Olivia Byrne. These posters come on the heels of the film's world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 9, with the studio also announcing a new theatrical release date as well.

In a superhero origin tale unlike any other, the film is the incredible true story of what inspired Harvard psychologist Dr. William Moulton Marston to create the iconic Wonder Woman character in the 1940's. While Marston's feminist superhero was criticized by censors for her 'sexual perversity', he was keeping a secret that could have destroyed him.
See full article at MovieWeb »

Guest Post: Plenty of Qualified Women Directors Are Ready to Fill the Ranks

Rachel Feldman

Guest Post by Rachel Feldman

If asked to imagine a film or TV director, most people conjure the image of a man. Sadly, this is true for those who work in the film and television industry as well. In fact, research from USC Annenberg’s Media, Diversity & Social Change Initiative confirms that zero percent of Hollywood executives have any women director’s names at the top of their minds. Of course, those in the know have lists that include Kathryn Bigelow, Patty Jenkins, or Ava DuVernay in features and Lesli Linka Glatter or Reed Morano in television — but there are also hundreds, if not thousands, of highly skilled women directors who have been invisible for way too long.

The statistics for women directing stagnates at four percent in feature films and at 17 percent in television, and although the 17 percent in TV may initially sound like forward momentum, when statistically analyzed it proves to be an illusory number because it doesn’t represent the number of women directing, only the number of episodes directed by women. In other words, it is often the same few women doing all the work. But the fact is that there are over 1,300 experienced women directors in the Directors Guild of America (DGA), many with decades of experience in high-quality broadcast and cable television. So why do only about 50 of these directors appear and re-appear on network hiring lists?

Last week NBC announced a new “Female Forward” program that will train 10 new women directors a year through a shadowing program. NBC President Jennifer Salke says that the pool of available directors is “too small” and she’s excited about the idea of having 30 new directors in three years. Of course it’s fantastic that NBC is going to create a program in support of women directors, but it would be a mistake not to correct an insidious false assumption that continues to undermine real progress.

Salke is by no means alone in her thinking: it is a predominate belief throughout the entire industry that one of the reasons why gender employment statistics are so low is because there just aren’t enough qualified women directors to fill the ranks. But this is patently untrue.

The fact is that NBC could have 100 highly skilled directors tomorrow. If our industry truly wants swift, equitable gender equity in the director ranks, the answer is not simply to train new directors and hope for the future. We need to find and hire the large pool of already trained, highly accomplished women directors who have been toiling in the trenches for decades. We need to make the change now.

The employment mechanism for hiring directors is, no doubt, complex. There are many levels of executives, all who need to vet a director. That’s why directors with hot credits and repped by top agents are easy to notice — and those who may not have a recent credit, or who are not represented by a high-profile agent or manager, become invisible.

Women’s careers also look different from their male counterparts’. Women often step away from thriving careers to raise children and care for family members. Add in the gender bias that makes each and every job a Sisyphean hurdle and it’s simple to see how women lose their reps and fall off rosters. But these women are indomitable. Many have thriving careers in allied fields as writers, producers, editors, ADs, or teachers. Some make independent features. All of them are eager to be making an honorable living, with goldstar health insurance, using the masterful skills they have taken a lifetime to hone.

In life, and certainly in the movie business, we are taught that we will be rewarded for tenacity and determination, but so far this has not proven true for an army of women directors.

Meryl Streep sponsors a program for mid-career women writers through New York Women in Film & Television, the Writers Guild of America has made enormous strides supporting the careers of their experienced female members with a variety of initiatives and programs, and The Ravenal Foundation and The Jerome Foundation have long supported mid-career female feature directors. But in the television director landscape the continued focus on new, untrained directors as the sole way to ameliorate a widespread problem is both an unimaginative solution and an enormous injustice to women who have already been injured by decades of gender exclusion.

DuVernay, Oprah Winfrey, and Ryan Murphy are trendsetting new formulas in hiring television directors. They understand that the status quo is not serving directors who are not white men and they are hiring both veteran directors who’ve fallen off hiring lists as well as promising talent. But a handful of progressive thinkers is not enough. The entire industry — networks, studios, producers, and agencies — must create avenues of opportunity for mid-career women directors. It may require a bit of work to discover this gold mine of talent but just below the surface are literally hundreds of brilliant women directors who deserve a break.

This past presidential election was a disgraceful example of how accomplished, highly experienced women can be disregarded. Hiding behind excuses of: “It’s our [pick one] first/second/third season,” or “We have [pick one] stunts/VFX/finicky actors/cross-boarding/a tricky tone…” is as misogynistic/patriarchal as men who think they can grab women wherever they want. We must continue to ask why men are regarded with great potential and women are seen as needing to have a continuing education. Mid-career women directors are trained to figure out what they need to tell a story and it’s high time for the film and TV machine to support and nurture this valuable resource.

Create your own programs and initiatives or search for us at The Director List and the DGA.

And here is a just-a-tip-of-the-iceberg list of experienced television directors — not intended to be exhaustive or comprehensive — to illustrate the bounty to be discovered. There are also hundreds more accomplished women in the independent world:

Victoria Hochberg, Gloria Muzio, Neema Barnette, Debbie Reinisch, Hanelle Culpepper, Martha Coolidge, Amy Heckerling, Tanya Hamilton, Tessa Blake, Kat Candler, Shannon McCormack Flynn, Ellen Pressman, Leslie Libman, Vicky Jenson, Stacy Title, Linda Feferman, Matia Karrell, Maggie Greenwald, Deborah Kampmeier, Debra Granik, Darnell Martin, Anna Foerster, Heather Cappiello, Nicole Rubio, Leslie Libman, Beth Spitalny, Daisy Von Scherler Mayer, Jan Eliasberg, Elodie Keene, Diana Valentine, Jessica Landaw, Julie Hebert, Julie Anne Robinson, Katherine Brooks, Martha Mitchell, Nicole Kassell, Nzingha Stewart, Rachel Talalay, Rose Troche, Stacey Black, Alexis Korycinski, Allison Anders, Ami Canaan Mann, Amy Redford, Anna Mastro, Anne Renton, Catherine Jelski, Claudia Weill, Dee Rees, Helen Hunt, Jessica Yu, Donna Deitch, Kasi Lemmons, Lily Mariye, So Yong Kim, Tina Mabry, Tanya Hamilton, Rachel Feldman

Rachel Feldman has directed more than 60 hours of television and is in development to direct her award-winning screenplay “Fair Fight,” a political thriller based on the life of Fair Pay activist Lilly Ledbetter. She is a former chair of the DGA Women’s Steering Committee. Go to her website for more information. #WomenCallAction

Guest Post: Plenty of Qualified Women Directors Are Ready to Fill the Ranks was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
See full article at Women and Hollywood »

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic Begins Shooting

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic Begins Shooting
2016 marks the 75th Anniversary of Wonder Woman's DC Comics debut, which was celebrated in part by this beloved character's first live-action foray on the big screen. Gal Gadot played Diana of Themyscira in this spring's Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Today we have word that the man who created Wonder Woman, William Marston is getting a movie of his own, with Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions picking up Professor Marston & The Wonder Women. Production already started this week, with Luke Evans starring as William Marston.

Deadline reports that this biopic will delve into the life of William Marston, a Harvard psychologist and inventor who created Wonder Woman in 1941. The cast also includes Rebecca Hall as William Marston's wife Elizabeth, a psychologist and inventor, and Bella Heathcote as Olive Byrne, one of Marston's former students who had a polyamorous relationship with the married couple. William Marston's enduring creation was heavily
See full article at MovieWeb »

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic in the Works With Luke Evans and Rebecca Hall

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic in the Works With Luke Evans and Rebecca Hall
DC Comic’s iconic female superhero Wonder Woman has been generating buzz with the upcoming Gal Gadot-starring film due out next year. Then last week, Greg Rucka, writer of the reborn Wonder Woman comics revealed that the heroine is bisexual. But now, the story of Diana Prince’s creator is getting the spotlight in the upcoming indie drama “Professor Marston & The Wonder Women.”

Per Deadline, Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions has acquired the worldwide rights from Topple Productions and Boxspring Entertainment. Directed and written by Angela Robinson, the film stars Luke Evans as Dr. William Moulton Marston, a Harvard psychologist and inventor who created Wonder Woman in 1941. Rebecca Hall will portray his wife Elizabeth, also a psychologist and inventor, and Bella Heathcote will play Olive Byrne, a former student of Marston’s and who also shared a polyamorous relationship with the couple.

Read More: ‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins Fights
See full article at Indiewire »

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic Starring Luke Evans, Bella Heathcote in Production

Wonder Woman Creator Biopic Starring Luke Evans, Bella Heathcote in Production
Luke Evans, Bella Heathcote and Rebecca Hall are starring in a biopic about the creator of Wonder WomanProfessor Marston and The Wonder Woman,” which has started production.

Topple Productions and Boxspring Entertainment are the production companies and Angela Robinson is directing from her own script. Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions has acquired worldwide rights on the project.

The story focuses on Harvard psychologist Dr. William Moulton Marston, the inventor of the lie detector and creator of Wonder Woman, who defends his feminist superhero against charges of “sexual perversity.” Marston’s inspiration for Wonder Woman was his wife Elizabeth Marston and their lover Olive Byrne, two empowered women in the field of psychology.

Robinson has acted as consulting producer on “How To Get Away With Murder” as well as executive producing the final season of “True Blood.”

Amy Redford, Andrea Sperling and Terry Leonard are producing. “Transparent” creator Jill Soloway is
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Julia Stiles Is Heading Back To The New York Stage

Julia Stiles. There’s a name you haven’t heard in a while. Remember when she broke out as the meanest girl in school who managed to steal Heath Ledger’s heart in 10 Things I Hate About You? Then she did some romantic comedies, the Bourne movies and had a recurring role on Dexter.

Along with her movie roles Stiles has also had a couple of flings with theatre and now she is set to return to the New York stage starring Off Broadway in director Jennifer DeLia‘s production of Scott Organ‘s dark romantic comedy, Phoenix. Stiles was last on stage in 2009 in Oleanna; a role which she also played on the London stage in 2004 alongside Aaron Eckhart.

Here’s the intriguing synopsis for Phoenix:

When Bruce and Sue meet four weeks after an uncharacteristic one-night-stand, Sue has this to say to him: one, I had a great
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Casting: Sagal, Steenburgen, Jones, Bartha

Pitch Perfect 2

Katey Sagal ("Sons of Anarchy") has joined the cast of Universal's "Pitch Perfect 2" which Elizabeth Banks is directing.

Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson and Brittany Snow are set to return alongside Hailee Steinfeld. Sagal will play the mother of Steinfeld's character. [Source: Variety]

A Walk in the Woods

Mary Steenburgen has joined the cast of Ken Kwapis' film adaptation of Bill Bryson's memoir "A Walk In The Woods". Steenburgen will play an alluring motel proprietress who tempts the leading character when he stops at her establishment for the night.

The story tracks an aging travel writer (Robert Redford) who decides to hike the 2,000-mile Appalachian Trail, accompanied by a long-estranged high school buddy (Nick Nolte) he's been avoiding for years. [Source: Deadline]

The Tale of Tales

Toby Jones and John C.Reilly will join Vincent Cassel, Salma Hayek and Alba Rohrwacher on Matteo Garrone's English-language debut "The Tale
See full article at Dark Horizons »

Amy Redford's Phoenix fires up cast

  • ScreenDaily
Amy Redford's Phoenix fires up cast
Exclusive: Directed by Amy Redford [pictured], the modern romance stars Justin Bartha, Olivia Thirlby and Constance Zimmer.

Justin Bartha, Olivia Thirlby and Constance Zimmer have joined the cast of Amy Redford’s next project Phoenix, which she will begin shooting for Micro Films Group in September.

Manifest Film Sales, a division of Intandem Media Group, commences talks with buyers this week on the Croisette.

Playwright Scott Organ wrote the screenplay about a one-night stand between love-averse strangers that sends them on a 4,000-mile trip from Brooklyn to the Grand Canyon and back.

Producers are Buzz Koenig and Paul Urcioli, while Micro Films Group CEO Henri M Kessler serves as executive producer alongside Dawn Krantz and Federico Bauder.

“Phoenix is a modern romance that reflects all of the complexities of actually falling in love – navigating hard choices, the absurdity and exhilaration of life,” said Redford, the daughter of Robert Redford who made her directorial debut on Sundance 2008 premiere [link=tt
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Micro's Phoenix ramps up

  • ScreenDaily
Micro's Phoenix ramps up
Exclusive: Henri M Kessler’s fledgling Micro Films Group has secured co-financing and a production start for Phoenix, the second feature from Amy Redford.

Intandem division Manifest Film Sales handles international sales and has been in talks with buyers at the Efm.

The New York-set film follows two love-averse strangers on a trek to Phoenix and back as they navigate the emotional possibilities and repercussions of a one-night stand.

Scott Organ adapted Phoenix from his play of the same name, which had its world premiere at the 2010 Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville and in New York at The Barrow Group.

Pre-production is set to begin in March and principal photography for April-May in New York. Buzz Koenig and Paul Urcioli will produce and Kessler is on board as executive producer.

Redford made her feature directorial debut in 2008 with The Guitar starring Saffron Burrows and Paz de la Huerta.

”Phoenix is a modern
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Sridevi to team up with Meryl Streep

Sridevi to team up with Meryl Streep
Just when the jury is out on which Indian film goes to the Oscars this year, comes the news that could possibly clinch the matter in favour of Gauri Shinde's English Vinglish. Apparently, Meryl Streep has seen this highly influential film about a Maharashtrian woman struggling with the English language in America and has given her go-ahead to a film with the English Vinglish heroine Sridevi. The film entitled Cowboys & Indians is to be directed by American superstar Robert Redford's daughter Amy Redford. Interestingly, Sridevi has appointed no casting agent in the Us. Apparently, both Amy and Meryl have shown a keen interest in this film solely on the basis of Sridevi's sterling performance in English Vinglish. And now the script awaits the approval of Sridevi's elder daughter Jhanvi. Says Sridevi's doting husband Boney Kapoor, "Yes, Sri has received the script for the project that you've mentioned with Meryl Streep.
See full article at BollywoodHungama »

Sridevi to star in Meryl Streep film 'Cowboys and Indians'?

Sridevi to star in Meryl Streep film 'Cowboys and Indians'?
Bollywood actress Sridevi has been approached to star in a film with Meryl Streep.

The film entitled Cowboys & Indians is to be directed by Robert Redford's daughter Amy Redford.

Boney Kapoor confirmed that his wife had received the script and was considering the role, according to Bollywood Hungama.

The producer said that "in principle the project sounds right as a follow-up to English Vinglish for Sri".

Streep reportedly saw Sridevi's portrayal of an Indian housewife struggling with language and cultural barriers in the Us in Gauri Shinde's 2012 comedy/drama.

The 47-year-old actress, who recently said she wanted to "emulate Meryl Streep's career" would be given an equal role to the Hope Springs star in the film.

Earlier this year, Sridevi was awarded the Padma Shri - one of India's highest honours - for her contribution to the arts.

Watch Sridevi in the trailer for English Vinglish
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Save Pickford-Fairbanks Studios Protest Today

Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks: Pickford-Fairbanks Studios Filmmaker Allison Anders will be present at a protest "to lead all supporters" of the old Pickford-Fairbanks Studios, which is set to be (at least partially) torn down in the near future. Located at the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Formosa in West Hollywood, the studio currently known as The Lot was bought by the Cim Group, which intends to expand facilities by demolishing near-century-old buildings. The protesters, who have named April 1 "Pickfair Day," are scheduled to assemble outside The Lot at 1 p.m. According to the Save Pickfair Studio website, protest organizers "will, as time and technology allows, be live tweeting and blogging our protest." Organizers suggest that protesters should "bring your friends and all the press," in addition to video and phone cameras. They explain that street parking shouldn't be a problem on a Sunday. I'd never heard of the
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Sundance Channel expanding to cover this year’s film fest

By Sean O’Connell

Hollywoodnews.com: Whether you are heading to this year’s Sundance Film Festival – which begins on Thursday in Park City, Utah – or following every happening from the comfort of your own home, it sounds like the Sundance Channel is ramping up its coverage to bring most of the fest to you.

For the first time in the channel’s history, Sundance Channel is officially setting up an on-site headquarters – located at 692 Main Street – which will play host to an all-access, multimedia experience for Sundance Film Festival patrons.

“All eyes are on the Sundance Film Festival every year, and no wonder: it’s a one-of-kind event on the film calendar, a place to get early indications of what’s next in our culture. We’re proud to share the Sundance name and it’s only fitting that we create an exciting media event on all of our
See full article at Hollywoodnews.com »

Strong 'Intent'

"The only thing that works is sleep and food," asserts Saffron Burrows when asked how she maintains her stamina during the 15-to-16-hour shooting days for her role on "Law & Order: Criminal Intent." "I eat like Michael Phelps," meaning she consumes a great deal—including meat, which represents a major culinary shift for her. She was a vegetarian for 25 years. "As a kid, I felt you don't eat anything you wouldn't kill yourself." The steak habit was re-launched when she was shooting Amy Redford's "The Guitar." Her character was a beef eater, and Burrows decided to relinquish her vegetarianism for the film; then, she says, "I let my morals go." She laughs between bites of—no, not hamburger and french fries—salad and sushi in her spacious dressing room at New York's Chelsea Piers, where the TV series is shot. Burrows has recently come on board the 9-year-old show to play Detective Serena Stevens,
See full article at Backstage »

Hayden Christensen To Star in The Genesis Code For Director David R. Ellis

Hayden Christensen has agreed to star in director David R. Ellis’ (Snakes on a Plane, The Final Destination) upcoming thriller The Genesis Code, based on the novel by the same name written by John Case. Here’s the synopsis:

The story follows a former national security expert, played by Christensen, who, while investigating the murder of his only sister and her young son, discovers that a religious sect called The Shadow of the Cross may be involved. With the help of his sister’s friend Ana, they follow the clues to a clinic in the mountains of Italy, where a terrifying secret experiment has been conducted – successfully. The results are so threatening to the foundation of the Church that they will do anything to keep it from being revealed.

The film’s screenplay is written by Kevin Bernhardt. Myriad Pictures, who will co-produce the film, owns all rights worldwide, will
See full article at Collider.com »

Hayden Christensen Joins The Genesis Code

Hayden Christensen joins The Genesis CodeHayden Christensen is on board for the lead role in director David R. Ellis' upcoming thriller The Genesis Code, based on the novel by the same name written by John Case. The film's screenplay is written by Kevin Bernhardt. Myriad Pictures, who will co-produce the film, owns all rights worldwide, will be selling the film at the upcoming Marche du Film in Cannes.

The producers are Tove Christensen, Myriad's CEO and President Kirk D'Amico, Michael Mailer and Alvaro Longoria.

The story follows a former national security expert, played by Christensen, who, while investigating the murder of his only sister and her young son, discovers that a religious sect called The Shadow of the Cross may be involved. With the help of his sister's friend Ana, they follow the clues to a clinic in the mountains of Italy, where a terrifying secret experiment has been conducted - successfully.
See full article at MovieWeb »

Young Indies + Bloomingdale's = Bflix

The B-flix project for Bloomingdales was a dream come true for our Young Indies initiative. Young filmmakers are no different than artists who lived during the Renaissance... they need patrons to be able to work their craft and allow their talent to be seen. Bloomingdale's allowed these five young directors, Amy Redford, Antonio Campos, Emily Abt, Barry Jenkins and Andrew Hunt, to create in the most nurturing environment one could imagine. The resulting films are reflective of that support, and if more larger brands and corporations could do this, young artists could flourish and soar. The harsh reality of today's independent film market is that emerging director/writers often see their features get lost in cyberspace without any traditional means of support or advertising to boost awareness for their artistic endeavors. Fortunately, there are still those who actually show their interest and support of burgeoning voices, ...
See full article at Tribeca Film »

Super Shorts:[p]Lights! Camera! Fashion!

Tribeca Film celebrates the spirit of independent film in its many forms, and we are the first to shout 'hurrah!' whenever commercial entities choose to support filmmakers in the pursuit of their art. With this autumn's Bflix contest, Bloomingdale's and Young Indies have teamed up do just that. In commissioning five short films as part of its fall fashion campaign, Bloomingdale's has subverted its traditional ad strategy; though each unique snippet of artistic vision has a subtle nod to the department store, none even remotely resembles a billboard or fashion ad. A board game comes alive through animation (via Andrew Hunt); an interracial, outer-borough relationship develops (via Barry Jenkins); best friends present a recession survival guide (via Emily Abt); the lingerie department evokes nostalgia (via Antonio Campos); and the ritual of tea reaches across generations (via Amy Redford and Hall Powell): each film celebrates the spirit of our diverse city,
See full article at Tribeca Film »

Rachel Weisz To Invent The Internet As Hollywood Icon Hedy Lamarr

Everyone loves tales of Old Hollywood, and the screen icons that were made legendary in the 1930s and 1940s. It’s dangerous biopic territory to tread though, but if there is one actress who fits into the heady days of the ’40s, it’s Rachel Weisz, and she’ll be playing one of the most intriguing ladies of the era: Hedy Lamarr. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Weisz is attached to play the star in “Face Value,” an indie drama directed by Amy Redford.

Many regard Lamarr as one of the most beautiful actresses of all time. After narrow escaping Vienna during World War II, she moved to America and took up acting. With her Austrian heritage she was often cast in “exotic” roles, and shot to fame in Cecil B. DeMille’s “Samson and Delilah.” Her career faltered after playing the Biblical temptress and she only made a few films after that,
See full article at MTV Movies Blog »
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