8 items from 2013
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
Sharon Stone, Jon Favreau honored at 2013 Catalina Film Festival Sharon Stone and Jon Favreau were two honorees at the 2013 Catalina Film Festival, which ran September 18-23 in the small town of Avalon on the island of Catalina, located southwest of the Los Angeles Basin. Stone, best known for her role as Michael Douglas’ bisexual lover-cum-murderess in Paul Verhoeven’s Basic Instinct, received the Stanley Kramer "Social Artist" Award. Kramer was a producer-director whose movies tackled social issues, e.g., racism in The Defiant Ones and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, nuclear weapons in On the Beach, and the post-World War II Nazi trials in Judgment at Nuremberg. Actor-director Jon Favreau, best known as the director of Iron Man and Iron Man 2, both starring Robert Downey Jr., was the recipient of the Charlie Chaplin Icon Award. As an actor, Favreau’s comedies include I Love You, Man, with Paul Rudd »
- Anna Robinson
A celebration of legendary filmmaker Stanley Kramer will kick off Friday, Aug. 9 with a newly restored print of “Death of a Salesman" at the Billy Wilder Theater at the Hammer Museum in Westwood, Calif. It is the first of 15 of Kramer’s films that will be presented over the coming weeks as part of the series "Champion: The Stanley Kramer Centennial,” running through Sept. 29—Kramer’s 100th birthday. The celebration is presented by the UCLA Film & Television Archive and the Hugh M. Hefner Classic American Film Program and will include guest appearances by Louis Gossett Jr., Tippi Hedren, and Fred Willard, among many others. Some of the fims screening include the Oscar-winners “High Noon,” “The Defiant Ones,” and “Cyrano de Bergerac.” A full schedule is available here. As a director and producer, Kramer was responsible for 35 films, many of which made stars of unknowns and were often viewed as »
Eddie Romero dies: Filipino filmmaker best known for his exploitation horror and action movies Eddie Romero, one of most best-known Filipino filmmakers, died of prostate cancer on Tuesday, May 28. Romero was 88. Named a National Artist of the Philippines in 2003, Romero (born on July 7, 1924, in Dumaguete City) began his film career in the late ’40s, when The Philippines were still recovering from the devastation of World War II. His international reputation rests chiefly on his low-budget horror and action movies; usually Filipino / American co-productions made in collaboration with actor-producer John Ashley. Among those are the the horror sci-fier Brides of Blood (1968), featuring veteran Kent Taylor, Beverly Powers, tropical-island natives, and radioactively mutated human-eating plants; Beast of Blood (1971), featuring John Ashley and a headless monster; The Twilight People (1972), which has no connection to either Stephenie Meyer or the Cullen Clan — in the film, reminiscent of Erle C. Kenton’s Island of Lost Souls »
- Andre Soares
The new trailer for "White House Down" includes much of the same terrifying imagery presented in the film's first teaser -- the U.S. Capitol exploding from the inside out, for instance -- but with one key addition: jokes. The latest look at Roland Emmerich's upcoming summer blockbuster shines a spotlight on the interaction between stars Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx.
"It has a lot of humor, a lot of great characters, and -- at the center -- this relationship between an ex-soldier who wants to become a Secret Service agent (Tatum) but gets denied, and the President of the United States (Foxx)," Emmerich told HuffPost Entertainment when the first "White House Down" trailer debuted in March.
That relationship -- which, in this new trailer, includes elements of "Lethal Weapon" and "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" -- puts "White House Down" on the same level as a host of other 2013 summer blockbusters. »
- The Huffington Post
Today in history, April 13th, 1964... Sidney Poitier became the first black performer in a leading role to win an Oscar for his role in Lilies Of The Field. He also holds the record for the the youngest black actor to win the Best Actor Oscar, at age 37. This would be Poitier's second nomination for the award; the first being for his performance in The Defiant Ones, 5 years earlier. It would take another looooong 38 years before another black actor would win the Best Actor Oscar - Denzel Washington, in 2001, for his performance in Training Day. And coincidentally, that win made Denzel the oldest black actor to win the Best Actor Oscar, at 47 years old. That was in »
- Tambay A. Obenson
Legendary American actor Sidney Poitier, immortalized by his imperishable performances in the all-time classics The Defiant Ones, To Sir With Love, Lilies Of The Field and Guess Who's Coming To Dinner, has won over Anupam Kher's heart.
The two actors met on Wednesday evening in a hotel lobby in Los Angeles. They hit it off instantaneously, and stuck up a lengthy conversation. And now Poitier, considered a one-man institution in the arena of acting, would be visiting Anupam's acting school in Mumbai to address the students.
Speaking excitedly just as he was boarding his flight from Los Angeles to London on Thursday morning, Anupam said, "I met quite a number of really interesting stars and filmmakers on this trip to La. But meeting Sidney Poitier was as exciting for me as meeting our own Yusuf Saab (Dilip Kumar) for the first time. I felt the same excitement and a »
- Subhash K. Jha
Traditionally, February is known as Blaxploitation History Month here at Junkfood Cinema. Of course, “traditionally” a “decent person” “puts on pants before leaving the house” and “doesn’t touch communal buffet food with his bare feet,” so we are far from averse to bucking tradition. To wit, you might call today’s Blaxploitation History Month entry more of an investigation of blaxploitation alternate history. One of the most interesting facets of this short-lived subgenre of film is how it appropriated, and left its unmistakable mark on, several existing popular films and styles of film. We therefore had blaxploitation Westerns, blaxploitation horror, blaxploitation spy films, and even blaxploitation versions of movies like The Defiant Ones, courtesy of a young Jonathan Demme, and…the Warren Beatty comedy Shampoo, courtesy of what I have to assume was a dare. But what about sci-fi? Apart from an exceedingly small smattering of titles, one of which is about a white man and »
- Brian Salisbury
8 items from 2013
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