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Quite a few, apparently, from the identity of her birth father, to the nature of her fatal overdose at age 36 -- was it suicide, accident, or murder? In 2012, on the 50th anniversary of her death, Moviefone previously published "25 Things You Didn't Know About Marilyn Monroe." Turns out that list barely scratched the surface. Here, then, are 25 more.
1. Monroe's birth certificate from 1926 lists her birth name as Norma Jeane Mortenson. The last name was a misspelling of the surname of her mother's second husband, Martin Mortensen, who separated from Gladys before she became pregnant. Soon after, she reverted to her first married name, Baker, and gave that name to her daughter.
2. Gladys later told Norma Jeane that her father was Gladys' boss, Charles Gifford, who looked like »
- Gary Susman
Bill Pohlad never wanted to be that cliche of the successful industry insider who goes around town lamenting, “What I really want to do is direct.”
But the Oscar-nominated producer-financier behind “Brokeback Mountain,” “The Tree of Life” and “12 Years a Slave” really did want to direct — an ambition he harbored for years after a failed first attempt, and which grew even as he garnered increasing recognition as a backer of commercially risky, artistically ambitious indie films.
“I always had it in the back of my mind, and as time went on, it became more in the front of my mind,” Pohlad says over a recent breakfast at the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills.
Marco Grob for Variety
Pohlad admits he wasn’t ready to call the shots when he directed the little-seen 1990 film “Old Explorers.” But now, more than two decades later, the 58-year-old sees much brighter prospects for the »
- Scott Foundas
Peter Debruge: Well, I didn’t see that coming. In what feels like a twist ending — one that leaves me feeling a bit like Tim Roth at the end of “Chronic” — the Cannes jury has awarded the Palme d’Or to “Dheepan,” a movie that lags among my least favorites in the competition, and the weakest in Jacques Audiard’s filmography.
People have been throwing the word “weak” around a lot this week, grousing that the official selection doesn’t measure up to that of previous years. I defer to you, Scott and Justin, since you’ve each been attending Cannes for longer than I have (this is only my fifth time on the Croisette), but if there’s one thing I’ve learned in my time here, it’s that Cannes critics always like to complain that the present year’s crop feels meager by comparison to past editions, »
- Peter Debruge, Scott Foundas and Justin Chang
1. I wear patchouli. 2. I had an appendectomy. 3. I dance in my living room. 4. I have a scar alone the left side of my nose that is very hard to see. 5. I high-fived Axl Rose at the Pink Dot grocery store on Sunset Boulevard. 6. I get obsessively committed to certain jeans, boots, and people. 7. I’ve baked bread. 8. I was sent home from a class trip in eight grade because I got caught with boobs in my hands.I didn’t get to see Carlsbad Caverns until much later. 9. [...] »
It's time for my final Movies This Week post here at Slackerwood. I just want to thank Jette for bringing me on to contribute to this site over the last two years. I've really had a great time covering the local repertory scene and highlighting each week's new releases here in Austin. I've got one last review that will run over the weekend and then next week this site will cease publishing new material. I hope that you've found this a valuable resource and I'm going to leave you with a new one.
My good friend Zack McGhee is one of the biggest cinephiles I know. We met many years ago when we both lived in the Dayton, Ohio area and he worked not only for the Dayton Daily News, but also was a projectionist at the Little Art Theatre. Somehow, both of our jobs brought us here and we've »
- Matt Shiverdecker
Warning: The plot of Brad (Ratatouille) Bird's Tomorrowland is an incomprehensible muddle. A Wachowski screenplay reimagined by William Burroughs would be easier to follow. I'm only telling you this out of kindness so you won't feel like a complete mental lummox when, as this action offering for pre-teen girls ever so slowly ends after 130 minutes, you realize you don't know what the fuck happened.
(That Lost's Damon Lindelof is co-writer is no surprise. Hiring Lindelof to scribe a children's film is like asking Nietzsche to write a gluten-free cookbook.)
Otherwise, Tomorrowland is highly enjoyable. Well, that's true except for the opening when George Clooney and his sidekick talk directly to the camera and you sort of want to cringe. You'll understand why they do so at the end of the pic, which just reminded me the whole picture is a flashback. Other than with Sunset Boulevard, who needs flashbacks? Anyway, »
- Brandon Judell
Ever cruise Sunset Boulevard in a stretch limousine, and then hit the red carpet at a star-studded movie premiere? Stop by an impromptu party on the beach in Malibu, where the sun always shines and the cocktails flow? Score the best table at the hottest restaurant in town, no reservation required? And all the while, everywhere you go, gorgeous starlets wave as you pass by.
It’s everybody’s fantasy to live the Hollywood dream, but Vince, Eric, Drama, Turtle and Ari Gold really do, and they make it all look so easy. Boy, do the boys of Entourage know how to do it up and do it right, how to dream large – and live larger.
Here’s your chance to win passes to the advance screening of Entourage in St. Louis before it opens in theaters on June 3rd!
Entourage the much-anticipated big-screen version of the award-winning hit HBO series, »
- Movie Geeks
Locked Out of Heaven: Haynes Delivers Chilly Lesbian Romance
Todd Haynes makes an exciting return with Carol, his first feature film since 2007’s I’m Not There. A lavish period production design of 1950s New York finds the director returning to similar territory as seen in Far From Heaven and his mini-series remounting of “Mildred Pierce.” But whereas those films borrowed significantly from famous film texts, Haynes adapts a 1952 Patricia Highsmith novel, published under a pseudonym and described as a novel about persecuted love. Chilly, especially in comparison to the heterosexual classic Brief Encounter, of which the opening sequence has drawn reference to, Haynes has constructed a tightly wound ball of desire that is never given the opportunity to unravel.
In 1950’s New York, Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara) works as a department store clerk, though she has aspirations of being a photographer. Trapped in a one sided romance with her »
- Nicholas Bell
With his groundbreaking examinations of queer identity and his fondness for the heyday of classic melodrama, Todd Haynes seemed almost too perfect a choice to film an adaptation of “The Price of Salt,” Patricia Highsmith’s ahead-of-its-time 1952 novel about two women who boldly defied the stifling social conformity of the times. Still, even high expectations don’t quite prepare you for the startling impact of “Carol,” an exquisitely drawn, deeply felt love story that teases out every shadow and nuance of its characters’ inner lives with supreme intelligence, breathtaking poise and filmmaking craft of the most sophisticated yet accessible order. An obvious companion piece to Haynes’ “Far From Heaven” and “Mildred Pierce,” and no less painstaking in its intricate re-creation of a mid-20th-century American milieu, the Weinstein Co. release (set for a Dec. 18 release) should have little trouble translating critical plaudits, especially for Cate Blanchett’s incandescent lead performance, »
- Justin Chang
Made in Chelsea is heading to Los Angeles for a new 6-part series.
SW3's finest will hit up Beverly Hills' most stylish locations for Made in Chelsea: La.
"Los Angeles is a playground for the young, rich and the beautiful, so it's going to be really exciting to see the cast embrace everything it has to offer," said executive producer Ros Coward.
Made in Chelsea: La will air in summer 2015 - but before that, the BAFTA-winning reality series will celebrate its 100th episode on Monday, June 15.
E4 will host a Made in Chelsea takeover on that date - »
Joanne Carson -- the woman by Johnny Carson's side when he rocketed to superstardom -- died at her home in L.A. on Friday. Joanne-- a former Pan Am stewardess (that's what they were called back then) and model -- married Johnny in 1963 -- the year after he started hosting "The Tonight Show." They'd been dating since 1960 ... when Johnny was still doing sketch comedy. They lived together in NYC until they divorced in 1972. Joanne »
- TMZ Staff
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
From NYC to New South Wales, these stellar schools earn accolades for their showbiz programs.
U.S. Showbiz Programs
American Film Institute
AFI’s Conservatory is training 260 Fellows that are all, per the school, “worthy to watch.” The school’s participants create between four and 10 movies during the two-year program, and 37 alumni have received Oscar nominations in the past decade alone. An additional 118 have participated in award-winning projects ranging from “Boyhood” to “Mad Men.”
Art Center College of Design
The venerable private college’s film and graduate broadcast program continues to establish itself as an influential entity through its immersive curriculum and close working relationships between students and faculty. Its list of celebrated alumni includes director Zack Snyder and conceptual designers Ralph McQuarrie (“Star Wars”) and Syd Mead (“Blade Runner”).
Boston U. Department Film & Television, College of Communication
2015 saw the establishment of a one-year Mfa program, »
- Variety Staff
Jenni Olson’s latest film, The Royal Road, weaves through seemingly unrelated subjects, including a lesbian woman’s search for love, the Spanish colonization of California, the Mexican-American War, and Hollywood cinema. These subjects are connected by El Camino Real—the Royal Road—which originally linked Spanish missions from San Diego to Sonoma in Northern California. Fractured by hundreds of years of urban development, El Camino Real now runs through some of California’s most iconic and populated locations. The Royal Road meditates on these locations, the steady 16mm camera lingering on graffitied buildings, Edwardian apartments, historical statues, and San Francisco’s Mondrian-like cacophony of telephone lines. Olson’s narration bridges the apparent chasm between the contemporary landscape, the region’s past, and her own experiences. Two hundred and fifty years of history converge poetically and almost seamlessly. The Royal Road traces the residue of colonization and war and gestures »
- Matthew Harrison Tedford
A version of this story first appeared in the May 1 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe. As one executive puts it, if Star Wars: The Force Awakens doesn't score the biggest debut ever when it hits theaters Dec. 18, he'll "run up and down Sunset Boulevard naked." So how high could J.J. Abrams' reboot fly? The top U.S. opening is The Avengers, which launched to $207.4 million in May 2012 from 4,349 theaters. Disney's sequel, Avengers: Age of Ultron (May 1), could become the new champ, but many
- Pamela McClintock
Logo TV announced Friday that “Cocktails & Classics,” a new film series hosted by former “Ugly Betty” actor Michael Urie, will debut this Sunday. Each week Urie and his guests will gather to discuss the behind-the-scenes gossip during breaks of one of their favorite movies. Together they will re-watch iconic scenes and reenact their most beloved quotes from classics including “Cabaret,” “Sunset Boulevard” and “Valley of the Dolls.” See Photos: 28 Classic Movies That Never Won Best Picture Oscars – From ‘Raging Bull’ to ‘Chinatown’ The series first screening will be “Steel Magnolias.” In the episode, star Olympia Dukakis and screenwriter Robert Harling share how Meg. »
- Joe Otterson
Although the programming of the Colcoa French Film Festival falls mainly in the hands of executive producer and artistic director Francois Truffart, he acknowledges that the annual event, now in its 19th year, would not be possible without the involvement of the Directors Guild of America, which physically hosts the festival at its headquarters on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood, and the Writers Guild of America West.
In 1995 the two guilds banded — along with the Motion Picture Assn. and France’s Society of Authors, Composers and Publishers of Music, among others — to form the Franco-American Cultural Fund, which produces the festival. “All strategic decisions are made with the board — the DGA, the Wgaw and the Mpa together, so they are very much involved in the development of the festival,” Truffart says.
- Steve Chagollan
There is a scene around two thirds into Clouds of Sils Maria, the latest film from French filmmaker Olivier Assayas, where forty-something actor Maria Enders (Juliette Binoche) and her twenty-something personal assistant Valentine (Kristen Stewart) go to see a goofy sci-fi epic. That film is set on a spaceship and features characters with neon hairdos and colorful costumes shouting inane dialogue. Valentine and Maria gaze at the screen, the former wearing a grin of goofy enjoyment, the latter bored, even taking off her 3D glasses to see if they are worth wearing. Discussing the junky blockbuster afterward, Maria snorts at the headache-inducing flick. Valentine responds, saying that even if the movie is full of simplistic sci-fi pop psychology, it is no deeper than a more serious film.
Of all the meta comments to spill out of the thematically overbearing Cannes favorite, that may be its most telling. Clouds of Sils Maria »
- Jordan Adler
Two determined men all set to do battle, William F. Buckley Jr., the conservative trailblazer, and Gore Vidal, renowned author and iconoclast of the left, clash in Morgan Neville and Robert Gordon's high-spirited and illuminating Best Of Enemies. "One must have a mind of winter", to take the cue from Wallace Stevens' poem, The Snow Man, to not be irresistibly drawn in by their bigger-than-life personalities. Dick Cavett, Noam Chomsky, Christopher Hitchens, Matt Tyrnauer, Brooke Gladstone, Ginia Bellafante, Reid Buckley and Sam Tanenhaus give their take on this polarised pair in Best Of Enemies.
At Le Cirque in New York following a dinner honoring the filmmakers, I spoke with Robert Gordon, who is also »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
When it comes to the world of heroic fantasy, there have been a hell of a lot of really great butlers. We’ve got such luminaries as Ram Singh (The Spider), Bernardo (Zorro), Cadbury (Richie Rich), Ianto Jones (Torchwood), Lurch (The Addams Family), Max von Mayerling (Sunset Boulevard), two different Smitherses (Veronica Lodge and the Simpsons), Fritz Brenner (Nero Wolfe), Birmingham Brown (Charlie Chan) and of course Edwin Jarvis (The Avengers or Agent Carter – take your pick). There were the Green Hornet’s Kato, but that dude was more of a partner/sidekick than a butler, and Jack Benny’s pal Rochester was only technically a butler. He was actually Benny’s arch-enemy.
But head and shoulders above all other butlers, the king of the mountain of butlers is Bruce Wayne’s own Alfred Pennyworth. You can tell from the actors who played him on film and television – Michael Caine, »
- Mike Gold
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