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I don’t know how to break this jarring news to you, but NBC’s The Sound of Music Live! was exactly, precisely, 100% what we expected, and that means it was… cute enough!
Carrie Underwood‘s singing? Crisper than apple strudel. Carrie Underwood’s acting? Blander than a brown paper package without string. Audra McDonald‘s stage presence? Screen-melting. The sets? Like a PBS murder mystery complete with a mysterious fountain. The seven kids? Adorable in every single scene. Stephen Moyer? Constantly puckering for some reason. He looked like a Conan O’Brien caricature of an uptight statesman. Mistakes on this scandalously live telecast? Only a couple of stumbles here or there, like the lovely Laura Benanti‘s dress getting stepped on. But no gaffes. It was a blithe, enjoyable version of one of the most uniformly excellent musicals, and minor shortcomings were part of the pleasure. If it’s »
- Louis Virtel
Exclusive: The Theatre Department of Wme Entertainment has signed two estates of Broadway hitmakers. The agency now reps the estates of Jerome Robbins and August Wilson. This is significant since their works continue to be revived. Major hits that Robbins either directed or choreographed include The King And I, Fiddler On The Roof, West Side Story (which Robbins conceived as well as directed and choreographed), The Pajama Game, Peter Pan, Gypsy and On The Town. The latter has been the subject of speculation about a revival coming for next season or the one after, and one of the others is also going to be revived. Robbins won two Oscars and five Tony Awards. His estate had previously been handled by attorneys at Fitelson, Lasky, Asland, Couture & Garmise. Wilson’s works include the Pulitzer Prize-winning Fences and The Piano Lesson, Joe Turner’s Come And Gone, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, »
- MIKE FLEMING JR
By Mark Pinkert
This is the first article in a three-part series
In his 2006 Oscar acceptance speech for Best Supporting Actor, George Clooney said the following about Hollywood as a forum for social change:
We’re the ones who talk about AIDS when it was just being whispered, and we talked about civil rights when it wasn’t really popular. And we, you know, we bring up subjects. This Academy, this group of people gave Hattie McDaniel an Oscar in 1939 when blacks were still sitting in the backs of theaters. (About.com; “The Politics of George Clooney; Actor and Liberal Activist”)
Hollywood is often more progressive than other parts of the country, sure, and great films often lends pathos to social issues. They may even galvanize movements or rally support from previous non-believers. But there are other, extenuating facts we ought to consider before labeling Hollywood and the Academy the vanguard of social progress. »
- Mark Pinkert
With the holidays approaching, Amazon constantly rotates their DVD/Blu-ray deals. Here are today's highlights. Keep in mind, many of these end today. Best of Warner Bros 50 Film Collection (+UltraViolet Digital Copy) [Blu-ray] - $179.99 (70% off) includes 52 discs! 007: Daniel Craig Collection (Casino Royale / Quantum of Solace / Skyfall) [Blu-ray] - $28.99 (47% off) Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond with Skyfall [Blu-ray] $139.99 (53% off) Full House: Complete Series Collection - $54.99 (68% off) The West Wing: The Complete Series Collection - $74.99 (75% off) The X-Files: The Complete Series + Movies - $89.99 (73% off) Smallville: The Complete Series - $146.99 (57% off) Gilmore Girls: The Complete Series Collection - $79.99 (69% off) Friends: The Complete Series DVD - $89.99 (56% off) Friends: The Complete Series [Blu-ray] - $149.99 (46% off) Breaking Bad: The Complete Series (+UltraViolet Digital Copy) [Blu-ray] - $201.99 (33% off) Dexter: The Complete Series Collection [Blu-ray] - $219.99 (52% off) The Forever Marilyn Blu-ray Collection - $27.53 (72% off) includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire, River of No Return, »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
With the holidays approaching, Amazon constantly rotates their DVD/Blu-ray deals. Here are the new highlights. Best of Warner Bros 50 Film Collection (+UltraViolet Digital Copy) [Blu-ray] - $179.99 (70% off) includes 52 discs! 007: Daniel Craig Collection (Casino Royale / Quantum of Solace / Skyfall) [Blu-ray] - $28.99 (47% off) Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond with Skyfall [Blu-ray] $139.99 (53% off) Full House: Complete Series Collection - $54.99 (68% off) The West Wing: The Complete Series Collection - $74.99 (75% off) The X-Files: The Complete Series + Movies - $89.99 (73% off) Smallville: The Complete Series - $146.99 (57% off) Gilmore Girls: The Complete Series Collection - $79.99 (69% off) The Forever Marilyn Blu-ray Collection - $27.53 (72% off) includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire, River of No Return, There's No Business Like Show Business, The Seven Year Itch, Some Like it Hot, The Misfits The Rodgers & Hammerstein Collection (The Sound of Music / The King and I / Oklahoma! / South Pacific / State Fair / Carousel) - $34.80 (65% off) Ice Age »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
Every Sunday Amazon rotates many of their DVD/Blu-ray deals. Here are the new highlights. Some great stuff this week. Best of Warner Bros 50 Film Collection (+UltraViolet Digital Copy) [Blu-ray] - $179.99 (70% off) includes 52 discs! 007: Daniel Craig Collection (Casino Royale / Quantum of Solace / Skyfall) [Blu-ray] - $19.99 (64% off) Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond with Skyfall [Blu-ray] $139.99 (53% off) Taxi: The Complete Series - $47.99 (63% off) Full House: Complete Series Collection - $54.99 (68% off) The West Wing: The Complete Series Collection - $75.99 (75% off) The X-Files: The Complete Series + Movies - $89.99 (73% off) The Forever Marilyn Blu-ray Collection - $28.49 (72% off) includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire, River of No Return, There's No Business Like Show Business, The Seven Year Itch, Some Like it Hot, The Misfits The Rodgers & Hammerstein Collection (The Sound of Music / The King and I / Oklahoma! / South Pacific / State Fair / Carousel) - $34.80 (65% off) Ice Age 1-4 Collection + Ice Age Christmas »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
While Beverly Hills Pawn regularly features a number of unique, luxurious and breath-taking items for sale, for loan and for purchase they are nothing compared to the items that Yossi Dina keeps locked away inside his vault. On very special occasions, when it becomes necessary to find that perfect item for a customer, viewers are treated to a very quick glimpse. But starting now you can get a series of exclusive longer looks inside this secretive room. Every Monday find out what Yossi considers to be his most treasured items and don't miss all-new episodes of Beverly Hills Pawn beginning this Wednesday at 9p Et/ 9p Pt on Reelz.
Link | Posted 11/4/2013 by reelz
- reelz staff
Irene Dunne movies: Five-time Best Actress Academy Award nominee starred in now-forgotten originals of well-remembered remakes In his August 2007 Bright Lights article "The Elusive Pleasures of Irene Dunne," Dan Callahan explained that "the reasons for Irene Dunne’s continuing, undeserved obscurity are fairly well known. Nearly all of her best films from the thirties and forties were remade and the originals were suppressed and didn’t play on television. She did some of her most distinctive work for John Stahl at Universal, and non-horror Universal films are rarely shown now. Practically all of her movies need to be restored; even her most popular effort, The Awful Truth (1937), looks grainy and blotchy on its DVD transfer, to say nothing of things like Stahl’s When Tomorrow Comes (1939), or Rouben Mamoulian’s High, Wide, and Handsome (1937), two key Dunne films that have languished and deteriorated in a sort of television/video purgatory. »
- Andre Soares
Rex Harrison hat on TCM: ‘My Fair Lady,’ ‘Anna and the King of Siam’ Rex Harrison is Turner Classic Movies’ final "Summer Under the Stars" star today, August 31, 2013. TCM is currently showing George Cukor’s lavish My Fair Lady (1964), an Academy Award-winning musical that has (in my humble opinion) unfairly lost quite a bit of its prestige in the last several decades. Rex Harrison, invariably a major ham whether playing Saladin, the King of Siam, Julius Caesar, the ghost of a dead sea captain, or Richard Burton’s lover, is for once flawlessly cast as Professor Henry Higgins, who on stage transformed Julie Andrews from cockney duckling to diction-master swan and who in the movie version does the same for Audrey Hepburn. Harrison, by the way, was the year’s Best Actor Oscar winner. (See also: "Audrey Hepburn vs. Julie Andrews: Biggest Oscar Snubs.") Following My Fair Lady, Rex Harrison »
- Andre Soares
Kirk Douglas movies: The Theater of Larger Than Life Performances Kirk Douglas, a three-time Best Actor Academy Award nominee and one of the top Hollywood stars of the ’50s, is Turner Classic Movies’ "Summer Under the Stars" featured star today, August 30, 2013. Although an undeniably strong screen presence, no one could ever accuse Douglas of having been a subtle, believable actor. In fact, even if you were to place side by side all of the widescreen formats ever created, they couldn’t possibly be wide enough to contain his larger-than-life theatrical emoting. (Photo: Kirk Douglas ca. 1950.) Right now, TCM is showing Andrew V. McLaglen’s 1967 Western The Way West, a routine tale about settlers in the Old American Northwest that remains of interest solely due to its name cast. Besides Douglas, The Way West features Robert Mitchum, Richard Widmark, Lola Albright, and 21-year-old Sally Field in her The Flying Nun days. »
- Andre Soares
With a culture that revolves around many celebrities who rise to fame for basically no reason, it's incredibly refreshing to hear about stars who had their big breaks in musical theater. These stars are triple threats with their singing, dancing and acting talents and their careers have only grown since their more humble beginnings. Some of these celebrities are known for their raw musical talent, but a few come as quite a surprise.
In March 1979, far before she was known as Carrie Bradshaw, Sjp starred in "Annie" as the musical's namesake for a year.
The beloved actress who plays Broadway-obsessed Rachel Berry was a star before "Glee" even started. Her Broadway debut in 1995 as Young Cosette in »
- The Huffington Post
Yossi Dina has plenty of gorgeous items in his collection, which is why he and his Beverly Hills Pawn co-star Cory Oliver headed over to Access Hollywood to show off some of their goods. Yossi brought some of his all-time favorite items from his collection with him, including Yul Brynner's slipper from The King and I and Tom Hanks' Bubba Gump Shrimp Company cap from Forrest Gump, but the best goodie of all was a brand-new addition to the Dina Collection. Cory was lucky enough to be wearing the incredible 12-carat diamond that Yossi purchased the day before for $150k. It might be the price of a modest house, but there's no doubt that it was money well spent. It's worth taking a look at the video just to see the gorgeous rock.
Link | Posted 8/2/2013 by reelz
- reelz staff
Though she probably made the biggest splash – and scored an Oscar nomination in the process – for her role as Captain Lewis in Private Benjamin, actress Eileen Brennan enjoyed a long and varied career. She died on Sunday at the age of 80.An always-reliable performer noted for her husky voice and take-no-prisoners attitude to both life and performing, she was born Verla Eileen Regina Brennen in 1932 and grew up in Los Angeles. After studying at Georgetown University, she took acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York, paying her way through work as a singing waitress while performing in summer stock during the holidays.She scored various stage roles, and won an Obie Award for her leading performance in 1959’s Little Mary Sunshine. Brennan followed that up with roles in The Miracle Worker and The King And I.Television would follow in the 1960s, with work on The Star Wagon »
Rita Moreno is to receive a special Screen Actors Guild Award.
The Singin' in the Rain actress will become the 50th recipient of the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in January.
Moreno is being honoured for her contributions to the stage, screen and music over the last 60 years.
"She is an extraordinarily versatile, talented and generous actor whose career is notable for its courageous choices and for the breadth, depth and quality of her many demanding and commanding roles," Howard said.
Moreno is one of the rare performers to have won an Academy Award, an Emmy, a Grammy and a Tony Award.
The 2014 SAG Awards will »
Detective Sergeant Jessica King is a unique cop who works hard bringing justice to the bad guys using her unconventional but highly entertaining methods. With all this hard work, we feel like the detective deserves some sort of recognition so, in honor, we have decided to make a list of our top ten favorite movie Kings of all time. While we realize that Ms Jessica King does not yet have her own movie, we feel like its only a matter of time. This also happens to be the very week that a future British king was born, so what better a time could there be to count down movie kings?
Catch King on Fridays at 10p Et/ 9p Pt on Reelz.
Fridays at 10 Et/ 9 Pt
Link | Posted 7/23/2013 by Matilda
- Matilda Badham
Rita made the cover of "Life" in 1954 Congratulations to "Anita" herself, Rita Moreno. The Egot winner, West Side Story Mvp, and showbiz legend will be honored with the SAG Lifetime Achievement Award this coming January at the SAG Awards Ceremony live on TNT and TBS on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014. Unlike the Academy Awards (for shame) the Screen Actors Guild still understands the importance of honoring the giants of showbiz history each year on their broadcast, bless them.
Rita was the third actor to win the coveted "Triple Crown" (Tony, Emmy, Oscar) and coincidentally also the third performer to manage an "Egot" (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony). What's most impressive about both achievements is that the awards were spread out over two decades and came for entirely different things (it's possible, after all, to win Grammys and Oscars for the same film and theoretically possible to win Emmys for performing on a »
- NATHANIEL R
Amir here, to bring you this month’s Team Top Ten on a topic that remains one of our biggest collective pet peeves here at The Film Experience.
Every year when the Academy announces the list of recipients of the Honorary Oscar, we can expect only one thing: they will all be men. Sure, the odd woman wins the award here and there, but consider this: between 1993, when the honor was bestowed upon Deborah Kerr, until 2009, when Lauren Bacall shared the award with two men, not a single woman was deemed worthy of the biggest honor AMPAS has to offer. Apologists can point to the fact that men have run the industry at large since its inception. They would be right; the industry as a whole is equally at fault, if not more, but take a look at the list of women still awaiting their first statue – or *gasp* first »
- Amir S.
Soprano Marni Nixon speaks about her not-so-secret roles in some of Hollywood's best-known musicals
Long before another Nixon got mixed up with a secret recording in Washington, Marni Nixon was one of the best-loved voices nobody knew. While stars like Deborah Kerr, Audrey Hepburn and Natalie Wood received the applause and record royalties for their work in musicals such as The King and I, My Fair Lady and West Side Story, it was Nixon's soprano who sang their songs uncredited, often after signing a contract never to disclose the ruse.
Years ago, the secret got out and Nixon became kind of a byword for behind-the-scenes vocal stand-ins, of the type that is used less today. But they still are used, says Nixon, 83. "They just have a cleverer way to do it."
Nixon was speaking by phone from New York before she recently travelled to Maryland to discuss her clandestine work, »
- Roger Catlin
Another edition of May Flowers is blooming...
abstew here with a look at a film that's so enamored with flowers that beautiful blossoms show up on screen even before the title of the film:
But, the flowers aren't merely decorative... although they are loverly. They line the streets of Covent Garden where the rich come to take in the refined, artistic pleasures of the Opera. And the poor, including our film's heroine, Eliza Doolittle (played by Audrey Hepburn), try to make a decent day's wages by selling the flowers to the visiting elite. The whole series of events that changes Eliza's fate all happens because she tries to sell her violets to one Colonel Pickering (Stanley Holloway). Little does she know that her conversation with the gentleman is being phonetically transcribed by a linguist professor named Henry Higgins (or as Eliza would say, 'Enry 'Iggins and played by Rex Harrison »
She had a big Oscar night, as both a red-carpet host and an end-of-show performer, but Kristin Chenoweth had another major engagement right before that.
In mid-February, the Tony- and Emmy-winning singing and acting dynamo staged a one-woman program at New York's Lincoln Center, encompassing show tunes made famous by many female stars of the Great White Way. That performance now comes home nationally as PBS' "Live From Lincoln Center" broadcasts the "American Songbook" offering "Kristin Chenoweth: The Dames of Broadway ... All of 'Em!" Sunday, March 24 (check local listings).
"I'd been working pretty hard on it for a couple of months," the ever-spirited star tells Zap2it. "I'm just so glad that I got to do it and that people seemed to be satisfied with it." Indeed, in his review of that evening, Stephen Holden of The New York Times credited Chenoweth with displaying "the metallic radiance of a human sparkler. »
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