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Born in St. Louis on May 27, 1911, iconic actor Vincent Price retained a special fondness for his place of origin, and that love was reciprocated with Vincentennial, a celebration of his 100th birthday in his hometown back in May of 2011 (for summary of all the Vincentennial activities go Here). One of the guests of honor at Vincentennial was Vincent Price’s daughter Victoria Price. Because of their close relationship and her access to his unpublished memoirs and letters, Victoria Price was able to provide a remarkably vivid account of her father’s public and private life in her essential book, Vincent Price, a Daughter’s Biography, originally published in 1999. .In 2011, her biography of her father was out of print. but now it’s been re-issued and Victoria will be in St. Louis this weekend (October 9th – 10th) for three special events. In addition to the biography, she will also be signing »
- Tom Stockman
For the first week of October, genre fans should get those wallets ready because there are seemingly endless horror and sci-fi movies being released on both DVD and Blu-ray. Warner Bros. is keeping busy with the release of numerous Hammer Classics in HD including Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed, The Mummy and Taste the Blood of Dracula, and we have the latest new release from Scream Factory, the cannibal comedy Gravy, to look forward to as well. Sony Pictures has also put together a stellar new release of Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Kino Lorber is showing the cult classic Burnt Offerings some love this week, too.
Other notable titles arriving on October 6th include We Are Still Here, Final Girl, Fire City: End of Days, Children of the Night, June, Pod, Cop Car, Alleluia, Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! and the second season of Penny Dreadful. »
- Heather Wixson
Charles Brackett ca. 1945: Hollywood diarist and Billy Wilder's co-screenwriter (1936–1949) and producer (1945–1949). Q&A with 'Charles Brackett Diaries' editor Anthony Slide: Billy Wilder's screenwriter-producer partner in his own words Six-time Academy Award winner Billy Wilder is a film legend. He is renowned for classics such as The Major and the Minor, Double Indemnity, Sunset Blvd., Witness for the Prosecution, Some Like It Hot, and The Apartment. The fact that Wilder was not the sole creator of these movies is all but irrelevant to graduates from the Auteur School of Film History. Wilder directed, co-wrote, and at times produced his films. That should suffice. For auteurists, perhaps. But not for those interested in the whole story. That's one key reason why the Charles Brackett diaries are such a great read. Through Brackett's vantage point, they offer a welcome – and unique – glimpse into the collaborative efforts that resulted in »
- Andre Soares
[Editor's Note: This post is presented in partnership with Time Warner Cable Movies On Demand in support of Indie Film Month. Today's pick, "She's Funny That Way," is available now On Demand. Need help finding a movie to watch? Let TWC find the best fit for your mood here.] "All About Eve" (1950)What is probably regarded as both Bette Davis and Joseph Mankiewicz’s best film, "All About Eve" is a surprisingly immediate and bitingly funny portrait of the price that fame often demands. When aging Broadway star Margo Channing (Bette Davis) takes young and seemingly innocent aspiring actress Eve Harrington (Anne Baxter) under her wing, the girl begins working to supplant her. After a period of success, Eve's deception is found out and she soon becomes trapped in a prison of her own making. A still-relevant tale of what it is like to be a woman on stage or on screen, "All About Eve" has reverence for the stage even »
Joan Crawford Movie Star Joan Crawford movies on TCM: Underrated actress, top star in several of her greatest roles If there was ever a professional who was utterly, completely, wholeheartedly dedicated to her work, Joan Crawford was it. Ambitious, driven, talented, smart, obsessive, calculating, she had whatever it took – and more – to reach the top and stay there. Nearly four decades after her death, Crawford, the star to end all stars, remains one of the iconic performers of the 20th century. Deservedly so, once you choose to bypass the Mommie Dearest inanity and focus on her film work. From the get-go, she was a capable actress; look for the hard-to-find silents The Understanding Heart (1927) and The Taxi Dancer (1927), and check her out in the more easily accessible The Unknown (1927) and Our Dancing Daughters (1928). By the early '30s, Joan Crawford had become a first-rate film actress, far more naturalistic than »
- Andre Soares
Robert Walker: Actor in MGM films of the '40s. Robert Walker: Actor who conveyed boy-next-door charms, psychoses At least on screen, I've always found the underrated actor Robert Walker to be everything his fellow – and more famous – MGM contract player James Stewart only pretended to be: shy, amiable, naive. The one thing that made Walker look less like an idealized “Average Joe” than Stewart was that the former did not have a vacuous look. Walker's intelligence shone clearly through his bright (in black and white) grey eyes. As part of its “Summer Under the Stars” programming, Turner Classic Movies is dedicating today, Aug. 9, '15, to Robert Walker, who was featured in 20 films between 1943 and his untimely death at age 32 in 1951. Time Warner (via Ted Turner) owns the pre-1986 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer library (and almost got to buy the studio outright in 2009), so most of Walker's movies have »
- Andre Soares
Like so many great American films of the era, A Letter to Three Wives has a touch of trash at its core. Writer/director Joseph L. Mankiewicz crafts well-rounded characters, thoughtful explorations of class via small-town postwar America, and snappy dialogue to spare. But this is still a story that really kicks off when three women receive a letter from another claiming to have run off with one of their husbands, timed to a daylong excursion where she knows they can’t do a damned thing about it. Not that there’s anything wrong with that at all.
The bulk of the movie takes place in flashback, as each woman reflects on the more tumultuous moments in their relationships, and why each husband would be motivated to abandon ship for the highly-desirable Addie Ross. Addie seems to have gotten around often enough to have gotten around to those same husbands in some capacity. »
- Scott Nye
Do films and TV influence behaviour, and for good or for ill? The answer is still hotly debated, so one film-maker decided to make a documentary about it
I used to be unable to answer the question: “What’s your favourite movie?” There were just too many options. My parents got me hooked on films when I was 11. My mom and I would sit and watch Alfred Hitchcock and Bette Davis films, and my dad would take me into New York to watch films by Jean Renoir and other foreign auteurs. At 13, my bar mitzvah had a film festival theme. Each table was named after a different favourite film at the time: All About Eve, Jaws, North by Northwest, The Searchers. Movies changed my life and I’ve always had such a deep and passionate love for so many different kinds, it was impossible to play favourites.
Today, things are different. »
- Adam Baran
'Being Julia' movie: Annette Bening and Shaun Evans 'Being Julia' movie review: Annette Bening showcase tells us a little about Avice A little Being Julia movie background: In Joseph L. Mankiewicz's 1950 Oscar-winning classic All About Eve, Bette Davis plays Margo Channing, a major Broadway star who, despite her talent, wit, and some forty-odd years on this planet, falls prey to the youthful, ambitious wannabe Eve Harrington: sweet, soft-spoken Anne Baxter on the outside; ruthless, poisonous gargoyle on the inside.* More than a decade earlier, in 1937 to be exact, W. Somerset Maugham had written Theatre, a novel about West End diva Julia Lambert. In Maugham's tale, Julia, despite her talent, wit, and some forty-odd years on this planet, succumbs to her vanity when she falls madly in love with Tom Fennel, a handsome – and deceptively innocent-looking – American half her age. Through Tom's "special friendship" with the renowned Julia, an ambitious young actress, »
- Andre Soares
This week marks the 10th anniversary of the release of "Crash" (on May 6, 2005), an all-star movie whose controversy came not from its provocative treatment of racial issues but from its Best Picture Oscar victory a few months later, against what many critics felt was a much more deserving movie, "Brokeback Mountain."
The "Crash" vs. "Brokeback" battle is one of those lingering disputes that makes the Academy Awards so fascinating, year after year. Moviegoers and critics who revisit older movies are constantly judging the Academy's judgment. Even decades of hindsight may not always be enough to tell whether the Oscar voters of a particular year got it right or wrong. Whether it's "Birdman" vs. "Boyhood," "The King's Speech" vs. "The Social Network," "Saving Private Ryan" vs. "Shakespeare in Love" or even "An American in Paris" vs. "A Streetcar Named Desire," we're still confirming the Academy's taste or dismissing it as hopelessly off-base years later. »
- Gary Susman
This week saw a number of sad losses in the entertainment industry. The singers of both “Louie Louie” and “Stand by Me” passed away this week, as well as Oscar-nominated screenwriter Don Mankiewicz, who was nominated for I Want to Live! Mankiewicz was the son of Herman J. Mankiewicz (Citizen Kane) and the nephew of Joseph L. Mankiewicz (All About Eve), and the father of John Mankiewicz (House of Cards). He was 93.
But perhaps most shocking was the loss of cinematographer Andrew Lesnie, who died suddenly this week at just 59 years old. Lesnie won an Oscar for The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, and he subsequently filmed all five of the remaining Lotr films and Peter Jackson’s King Kong and The Lovely Bones. Some of his more interesting credits are his work on Babe and Babe: Pig in the City. Lesnie’s last film however »
- Brian Welk
Brad Pitt 'Glory Days' costar Nicholas Kallsen Brad Pitt 'Glory Days' costar Nicholas Kallsen dead at 48 Nicholas Kallsen, who was featured opposite Brad Pitt in the short-lived television series Glory Days, has died at age 48 in Thailand according to online reports. Their source is one of Rupert Murdoch's rags, citing a Facebook posting by one of the actor's friends. The cause of death was purportedly – no specific source was provided – a drug overdose.* Aired on Fox in July 1990, Glory Days told the story of four high-school friends whose paths take different directions after graduation. Besides Nicholas Kallsen and Brad Pitt, the show also featured Spike Alexander and Evan Mirand. Glory Days lasted a mere six episodes – two of which directed by former Happy Days actor Anson Williams – before its cancellation. Roommates Nicholas Kallsen and Brad Pitt vying for same 'Thelma & Louise' role? The Murdoch tabloid also »
- Andre Soares
I am a film critic, but almost all of the movies I watch are new releases. That is going to change. With Jeff Bayer’s Remedial Film School a notable film critic or personality will assign me (and you) one film per month. Amy Nicholson from La Weekly is our guest, and she chose All About Eve (currently available on Netflix Instant). It’s Bette Davis’ birthday this month (April 5). Plus, the film The Clouds of Sils Maria starring Juliette Binoche, Kristen Stewart and Chloë Grace Moretz is out now in limited release and is being compared to Eve. Seems like the perfect time to watch this 1950 classic. Each section begins with a quote from the film. “Fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy night.” (Nicholson explains): All About Eve is hit-the-brakes fantastic, a movie so good that you shouldn’t watch anything else until you cue it on Netflix. For »
- Jeff Bayer
Don Mankiewicz, a member of a family of Hollywood royalty who earned an Oscar nomination for the screenplay to Susan Hayward starrer “I Want to Live!” and also worked in television, died Saturday of congestive heart failure at his home in Monrovia, Calif. He was 93.
Mankiewicz penned the pilot episodes of both ABC medical drama “Marcus Welby, M.D.,” which starred Robert Young and and James Brolin and ran 1969-76, and NBC cop drama “Ironside,” which starred Raymond Burr as a wheelchair-bound police detective on special assignment in San Francisco and ran 1967–75.
Don Mankiewicz was a son of Herman J. Mankiewicz, who won the screenplay Oscar for “Citizen Kane” together with with Orson Welles, and a nephew of Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who won Oscars for writing and directing best picture winner “All About Eve” (1950).
- Variety Staff
Just as babies must crawl before they walk, the proper education for cinephiles must begin with canonical classics like the Bette Davis-starring “All About Eve.” This year marks that film's 65th anniversary, and what better way to celebrate than with a French TV special on the film’s director Joseph L. Mankiewicz? Running 103 minutes and released in 1983, the special covers Makiewicz’s entire filmography, spanning 1946’s “Dragonwyck” to 1973’s “Sleuth.” It’s rare to get a director to expound on the entirety of their career at this length, so take this opportunity to watch a master talk about his craft. And with Mankiewicz responsible for classic films such as "Guys And Dolls," "Suddenly, Last Summer" and more infamously worked on the fiasco "Cleopatra," this is definitely a must watch. Thanks to the time-traveling powers of the internet, you can now see the French TV documentary “All About Makiewicz” below. »
- Cain Rodriguez
It was last August that I first got to view Starry Eyes and since that early Saturday screening at Frightfest I have been completely smitten. If you look closely at the packaging on the UK DVD, which is released on the 16th March you might spy some familiar stars and quotes, a proud moment in any writer’s life but it is even more special when it is a movie that truly stole your heart. Needless to say that when an opportunity to interview co-directors Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch, I jumped at the chance.
Widmyer and Kolsch have been working together for a number of years, producing short film Identical Dead Sisters and feature Absence before going onto make Starry Eyes with the help of Kickstarter funders. Starry Eyes chronicles a young and determined actress, Sarah Walker (Alex Essoe) as she goes to the darkest of lengths to achieve her Hollywood dreams. »
- Kat Smith
Oscar 2015 winners (photo: Chris Pratt during Oscar 2015 rehearsals) The complete list of Oscar 2015 winners and nominees can be found below. See also: Oscar 2015 presenters and performers. Now, a little Oscar 2015 trivia. If you know a bit about the history of the Academy Awards, you'll have noticed several little curiosities about this year's nominations. For instance, there are quite a few first-time nominees in the acting and directing categories. In fact, nine of the nominated actors and three of the nominated directors are Oscar newcomers. Here's the list in the acting categories: Eddie Redmayne. Michael Keaton. Steve Carell. Benedict Cumberbatch. Felicity Jones. Rosamund Pike. J.K. Simmons. Emma Stone. Patricia Arquette. The three directors are: Morten Tyldum. Richard Linklater. Wes Anderson. Oscar 2015 comebacks Oscar 2015 also marks the Academy Awards' "comeback" of several performers and directors last nominated years ago. Marion Cotillard and Reese Witherspoon won Best Actress Oscars for, respectively, Olivier Dahan »
- Steve Montgomery
Justin Chang: We don’t always agree, Guy (no two critics ever should), but it’s safe to say we’ve been more simpatico than usual over the course of this very long and happily almost-over awards season. I think we would both argue, for example, that “Foxcatcher” was ridiculously worthy of an Oscar nomination for best picture, and that its failure to nab one seems all the more inexplicable given that Bennett Miller managed to crack the much more competitive directing race. Likewise, I don’t know anyone else who had almost precisely the same reaction and counter-reaction to “Birdman” as I did — an initial thrill that almost completely fell apart on second viewing.
Clearly the industry feels otherwise, if “Birdman’s” presumed Oscar-frontrunner status is to be believed — which I fear it is, even as some of us are still clinging desperately to the hope that “Boyhood” will prevail. »
- Justin Chang and Guy Lodge
The Oscars are less than 96 hours away, so you only have a limited amount of time to brag about your insane knowledge of Academy Awards history. Ready for a brutal 21-question foray into Oscar's grisly past? Let's roll. (We give you the questions on the first page. Jot down your responses, then check the answers, along with the accompanying questions, on the next page. The videos embedded here aren't related to the questions. They're just fun!) 1. What ‘90s Best Actor winner gave the shortest onscreen performance ever nominated (and therefore awarded) in that category? This is measured by total minutes and seconds spent onscreen. 2. The first (and so far only) black female nominee in the Best Original Screenplay category was a co-writer of what biopic released in the 1970s? 3. From 1937 to 1945, the Academy guaranteed nominations in one particular category to any studio that submitted a qualifiable entry. What was the category? »
- Louis Virtel
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