(1967 TV Movie)

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Watch Maggie Smith in Zeffirelli’s lost production of ‘Much Ado About Nothing’

  • Hitfix
Watch Maggie Smith in Zeffirelli’s lost production of ‘Much Ado About Nothing’
If you’re a Maggie Smith fan who enjoyed watching the Dowager Countess’ biting wit or seeing Professor McGonagall’s strict but kind-hearted command of her classroom, you’re in for a treat today. In the 1960s, when Smith was a fixture at the National Theatre in London, she starred in a production there as one of Shakespeare’s wittiest verbal sparrers, Much Ado About Nothing’s Beatrice. That production boasted plenty more talent, including Derek Jacobi early in his soon-to-be-acclaimed stage career, Franco Zeffirelli producing the show just before he went on to make his celebrated Romeo and Juliet film, and Smith’s first husband, Robert Stephens, shortly before they got married. Though all that talent on stage together was preserved in a 1967 telecast on BBC, preserving the show forever didn’t appear to be the production’s destiny. Recorded at a time when BBC routinely deleted archive programs
See full article at Hitfix »

Ian McKellen on Modeling His Career After Laurence Olivier’s

Ian McKellen on Modeling His Career After Laurence Olivier’s
Ian McKellen stars in “Mr. Holmes,” which bowed Nov. 9 on DVD and Blu-ray. He reunites with writer-director Bill Condon after “Gods and Monsters,” where the actor earned the first of his two Oscar nominations. McKellen was first mentioned in Variety on Nov. 4, 1964, in a review of James Saunders’ play “A Scent of Flowers.”

That was your West End debut?

Yes. I had left university in 1961. In those days, every sizable town in the country had a permanent repertory company, which would do a new play every two to four weeks. I was in a series of those companies. One had to do that in those days: You couldn’t join Equity until you’d done 44 weeks’ work. And until you had your full card, you couldn’t work in the West End, or do film or TV. Finally, I got my full Equity card, No. 42015. It was the proudest day of my life.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Film Review: ‘Romeo & Juliet’

Film Review: ‘Romeo & Juliet’
“Wisely and slow. They stumble that run fast.” That’s the good Friar Lawrence warning Romeo not to act in haste, though he might just as well have been advising against the lurching, unsteady approach that proves the undoing of this desultory new version of “Romeo & Juliet.” Billing itself as the first picture since Franco Zeffirelli’s 1968 film to return Shakespeare’s endlessly malleable tragedy to its Veronese roots, director Carlo Carlei’s underwhelming adaptation, streamlined and simplified by Julian Fellowes from the original text, offers a throwback to classicism but is in little danger of being mistaken for a classic. Shorn of eroticism, intensity or purpose, apart from being the first feature backed by enterprising luxury brand Swarovski, it strikes familiar beats in a manner more strained than inspired.

Opening Oct. 11 Stateside through Relativity Media, this first high-profile Hollywood stab at the material in nearly two decades could court
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Bill Wallis obituary

Television and radio character actor with a familiar rich voice

Not many actors encompass political satire on the radio, comedy at the Royal Shakespeare Company and Bertolt Brecht in the regions, but Bill Wallis – plump, short, bespectacled, basso-voiced, rather like an old and fruity, homely owl – who has died aged 76, did just that. And a good deal more in a wide-ranging career of 50 years.

I got to know him a bit when he played Falstaff – as the token professional – in an Oxford University Dramatic Society production of The Merry Wives of Windsor in Worcester College gardens in the late 1960s. He was excellent company in our buttery bar and someone we all aspired to emulate as an academically qualified theatrical.

By then he was renowned for having taken over the Alan Bennett roles in Beyond the Fringe in the mid-1960s; being an exemplar in the Michael Palin/Bill Oddie
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Toronto film festival 2012 opens with host of aspiring Oscar winners

Canada's movie showcase rolls out Hoffman's directorial debut, Midnight's Children and the hotly tipped Hyde Park On Hudson

In Venice the red carpet is being rolled up and the stars are gathering their gowns, hopping into gondolas and heading to the airport. But not all of them are going straight home. The canny are now going on to Toronto.

The 36th annual film festival in Canada's biggest city has opened its doors with a confident grin, a nose for the mainstream and its eyes on the prize.

The sci-fi thriller Looper kicks off the proceedings; the following 10 days look set to reveal many award winners. Venice did secure the first screening of Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master, which is already odds-on to win the best picture Oscar, but it is Toronto that will fill out the nomination slip and indicate the winners in other categories.

The Canadian festival benefits
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Kristen Stewart Ready To Break Out At Tiff

Kristen Stewart Ready To Break Out At Tiff
Toronto — Sundance is the festival for low-budget filmmaking. Cannes and Venice are glitzy industry showplaces. The Toronto International Film Festival is both of those and everything in between, but mostly, it's a place for ordinary cinema lovers to see a lot of great movies.

Toronto's status as a festival for the people is confirmed by this year's opening-night film Thursday. The festival used to begin with a small Canadian film as a nod to local crowds that have made it one of the world's biggest and most-prestigious cinema showcases.

For its 37th year, Toronto opens with a big Hollywood action film, the sci-fi tale "Looper," starring Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Emily Blunt.

Festival co-director Cameron Bailey said "Looper" works on "both the action level and the ideas level," making it an ideal choice for festival audiences wanting something smart and entertaining. And with "Looper" hitting theaters Sept. 28, less than
See full article at Huffington Post »

2012 Toronto International Film Festival Unveils Galas & Special Presentations; Hyde Park On Hudson, To The Wonder, The Place Beyond The Pines, Byzantium On Lineup

Jayne Mansfield.s Car

Piers Handling, CEO and Director of Tiff, and Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of the Toronto International Film Festival, made the first announcement of films to premiere at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival. Films announced include titles in the Galas and Special Presentations programmes. The announced films include 17 Galas and 45 Special Presentations, including 38 world premieres.

Toronto audiences will be the first to see the world premieres of films from directors Andrew Adamson, Ben Affleck, David Ayer, Maiken Baird, Noah Baumbach, J.A. Bayona, Stuart Blumberg, Josh Boone, Laurent Cantet, Sergio Castellitto, Stephen Chbosky, Lu Chuan, Derek Cianfrance, Nenad Cicin-Sain, Costa-Gavras, Ziad Doueiri, Liz Garbus, Dustin Hoffman, Rian Johnson, Neil Jordan, Baltasar Kormákur, Shola Lynch, Deepa Mehta, Roger Michell, Nishikawa Miwa, Ruba Nadda, Mike Newell, François Ozon, Sally Potter, Robert Pulcini & Shari Springer Berman, Eran Riklis, David O. Russell, Gauri Shinde, Ben Timlett & Bill Jones & Jeff Simpson, Tom Tykwer & Andy Wachowski & Lana Wachowski,
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Toronto 2012 unveils full slate of Galas and Special Presentations

By Sean O’Connell

Hollywoodnews.com: Earlier, we brought you a snapshot glance at the first wave of programming announced for the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival. Shortly after, the fest released a thorough breakdown of the Galas and Special Presentations for this year’s event, which kicks off on Thursday, Sept. 6.

So far, 17 Galas and 45 Special Presentations have been announced, including 38 world premieres. Andrew Adamson, Ben Affleck, David Ayer, Maiken Baird, Noah Baumbach, J.A. Bayona, Stuart Blumberg, Josh Boone, Laurent Cantet, Sergio Castellitto, Stephen Chbosky, Lu Chuan, Derek Cianfrance, Nenad Cicin-Sain, Costa-Gavras, Ziad Doueiri, Liz Garbus, Dustin Hoffman, Rian Johnson, Neil Jordan, Baltasar Kormákur, Shola Lynch, Deepa Mehta, Roger Michell, Nishikawa Miwa, Ruba Nadda, Mike Newell, François Ozon, Sally Potter, Robert Pulcini & Shari Springer Berman, Eran Riklis, David O. Russell, Gauri Shinde, Ben Timlett & Bill Jones & Jeff Simpson, Tom Tykwer & Andy Wachowski & Lana Wachowski, Margarethe von Trotta, Joss Whedon and
See full article at Hollywoodnews.com »

Tiff 2012 Selects ‘To the Wonder,’ ‘Cloud Atlas,’ ‘Beyond the Pines,’ ‘Argo,’ ‘Looper’ & More

2012′s Toronto International Film Festival is set to officially announce its initial line-up later today, but Variety let the cat out of the bag, at least partially; and it’s quite astounding. Most of our most-anticipated films of the year will be premiering at the Canadian festival, notably Terrence Malick‘s To the Wonder, Wachowskis & Tom Tykwer‘s epic-sounding Cloud Atlas, Rian Johnson‘s Looper (which will open the fest), Ben Affleck‘s Argo, Dereck Cianfrance‘s The Place Beyond the Pines and much, more more.

Coming from Sundance, the only mentioned film was Ben LewisJohn Hawkes-starring The Sessions, while Cannes premieres include Matteo Garrone‘s Reality, Thomas Vinterberg‘s The Hunt, Pablo Larrain‘s No and Jacques Audiard‘s Rust and Bone. One of the biggest surprises is a new film from Noah Baumbach, starring Greta Gerwing titled Frances Ha. There’s also The Avengers director Joss Whedon
See full article at The Film Stage »

Nathan Fillion not famous enough to be in The Avengers 2?

Talking to Digital Spy, fan favourite actor Nathan Fillion first joked that he’d never heard of The Avengers, then addressed the possibility of his own involvement in The Avengers 2 by saying:

“I have to be honest. The entertainment industry is an industry. I love telling stories but…finance does meet art. If I were in charge of an Avengers sequel I would be very concerned about what kind of money I could make back overseas, and these kinds of things.”

However, he gave fans a hint of hope by adding:

“I’m not quite at that level yet…but I’m getting there.”

One could argue that Joss Whedon “wasn’t famous enough” before he directed The Avengers, and now guess what? Even normal people are going, “Wow, The Avengers was amazing! Joss Whedon did a brilliant job!” Thus providing their Whedonite friends with the perfect opportunity to do
See full article at Shadowlocked »

Joss Whedon's 'Serenity' Is Still Going Strong

by Tami Katzoff

Cue the “Buffy” theme song – you’re now reading a brand new column called The Weekly Whedon. If you’re new to Whedon fandom, welcome aboard. If you’re an old-schooler like myself… shiny!

Of course everybody’s still buzzing about Joss’ latest directorial effort, “The Avengers.” But since this is the inaugural Ww column I’m going to focus on the first film he directed – “Serenity.” It didn’t shatter box office records like “The Avengers” did, and it wasn’t populated with A-list stars, but “Serenity” was significant and ground-breaking in its own way. It was an anomaly, a studio film that was made because fans of a short-lived cult TV show demanded it.

If you’re not familiar with the story-behind-the-story, here’s a brief synopsis: After the early cancellation by Fox of Whedon’s space-western series “Firefly” in late 2002, fans were in an uproar.
See full article at MTV Splash Page »

"Anonymous," the Bard and "Coriolanus"

  • MUBI
"Roland Emmerich's Anonymous is a well-polished cowpat that will confuse and bore those who know nothing about Shakespeare and incense those who know almost anything," declares David Edelstein in New York. The film begins with Derek Jacobi announcing on a contemporary Broadway stage that the plays we attribute to Shakespeare are, in fact, the work of "Edward de Vere, seventeenth Earl of Oxford, who could not, by virtue of his rank, have anything to do with the theater and so handed over his masterworks — many of which were not performed until well after his death — to a boobish actor named Will Shakespeare, who incidentally was the one who stabbed Christopher Marlowe in the eye. Less improbably, De Vere screwed Queen Elizabeth, as well as (accidentally) his own mum…. Apart from its ineptitude, Anonymous is peculiarly beside the point. Shakespeare's succession of masterpieces, near masterpieces, and thrilling misses is a
See full article at MUBI »

Sheila Allen obituary

Actor who excelled at playing women of strength, wit and charm

Sheila Allen, who has died aged 78, was an actor of extraordinary range and power, and a delightful, independent-minded woman. From 1966 to 1978, she was a stalwart of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Her Stratford-upon-Avon career reached a triumphant climax when she played the eponymous heroine of Pam Gems's Queen Christina. While there were many great roles that one would have loved to see her play – such as Shakespeare's Cleopatra and Ibsen's Hedda Gabler – she was an invaluable team-player who always made her individual mark.

Sheila was born in Chard, Somerset. After attending Howell's school, in Denbigh, Clwyd, she trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art from 1949 to 1951. Repertory seasons followed, first in Yeovil and Pitlochry and then for the Arena theatre company in Birmingham, where her roles included Katherina in The Taming of the Shrew and Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Yesterday's heroes: the lost treasure trove of BBC drama

A hoard of lost TV dramas – starring the likes of Sean Connery, Maggie Smith and Derek Jacobi – have resurfaced. What do they say about TV then and now?

We have become used to the idea of major TV dramas being imported from America: series such as The Wire, The Sopranos and The West Wing. But a stash of programmes heading for Britain this month have a more complicated history. These are not strictly imports; rather, they are being returned to their country of origin.

The 65 plays – starring actors such as Sean Connery, Maggie Smith and Derek Jacobi – were transmitted by the BBC and ITV between 1957 and 1969, but were only seen once. Subsequently, if they were asked after by historians or biographers, they were found to be missing, presumed wiped, a frequent fate in a period when the preservation of TV programmes was an expensive business. However, during a recent stock-taking
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Yesterday's heroes: the lost treasure trove of BBC drama

A hoard of lost TV dramas – starring the likes of Sean Connery, Maggie Smith and Derek Jacobi – have resurfaced. What do they say about TV then and now?

We have become used to the idea of major TV dramas being imported from America: series such as The Wire, The Sopranos and The West Wing. But a stash of programmes heading for Britain this month have a more complicated history. These are not strictly imports; rather, they are being returned to their country of origin.

The 65 plays – starring actors such as Sean Connery, Maggie Smith and Derek Jacobi – were transmitted by the BBC and ITV between 1957 and 1969, but were only seen once. Subsequently, if they were asked after by historians or biographers, they were found to be missing, presumed wiped, a frequent fate in a period when the preservation of TV programmes was an expensive business. However, during a recent stock-taking
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

40-yr-old TV dramas starring Sean Connery and Maggie Smith found

London, Sep 13 – America’s Library of Congress has rediscovered an archive of 40-year-old TV dramas.

The dramas feature stars including Sir Sean Connery, Dame Maggie Smith and Sir Michael Gambon at the start of their career.

Researchers were delighted after unearthing hundreds of hours of lost British dramas from 1957 and 1970 in the archive in Washington, D.C.

The footage includes performances from several of Britain’s biggest acting stars, including Connery in a production of Jean Anouilh’s ‘Colombe’ from 1960 and a 1967 production of Shakespeare’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ starring Smith.

Jane Asher can be seen in.
See full article at RealBollywood »

Lost Dramas Featuring Sean Connery and Maggie Smith Found

An archive of 40-year-old TV dramas featuring British stars including Sir Sean Connery, Dame Maggie Smith and Sir Michael Gambon at the start of their career has been rediscovered in America's Library of Congress. Researchers were delighted after unearthing hundreds of hours of lost British dramas from 1957 and 1970 in the archive in Washington, D.C.

The footage includes performances from several of Britain's biggest acting stars, including Connery in a production of Jean Anouilh's "Colombe" from 1960 and a 1967 production of Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing" starring Smith. Jane Asher can be seen in a 1962 school production of "Romeo and Juliet", while Gambon has a bit part in a 1967 staging of the same tragic love story.

Officials at the Library of Congress have agreed to loan the broadcasts to the British Film Institute (BFI) to showcase the highlights in November. A spokesperson for the BFI says, "Negotiations to secure the
See full article at Aceshowbiz »

Treasure Trove Of Lost British TV Found

  • WENN
An archive of 40-year-old TV dramas featuring British stars including Sir Sean Connery, Dame Maggie Smith and Sir Michael Gambon at the start of their career has been rediscovered in America's Library of Congress.

Researchers were delighted after unearthing hundreds of hours of lost British dramas from 1957 and 1970 in the archive in Washington, D.C.

The footage includes performances from several of Britain's biggest acting stars, including Connery in a production of Jean Anouilh's Colombe from 1960 and a 1967 production of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing starring Smith.

Jane Asher can be seen in a 1962 school production of Romeo and Juliet, while Gambon has a bit part in a 1967 staging of the same tragic love story.

Officials at the Library of Congress have agreed to loan the broadcasts to the British Film Institute (BFI) to showcase the highlights in November.

A spokesperson for the BFI says, "Negotiations to secure the release of these dramas have been going on for some time and we have been holding on to the information until the time is right. It is very exciting, but we don't have all the information yet."

Lost tapes of classic British television found in the Us

Treasure trove of drama from the 'golden age of television' discovered in Library of Congress after more than 40 years

A rediscovered haul of television dramas that has been lost for 40 years or more is set to change the way we think about many of Britain's biggest acting stars.

The extraordinary cache of televised plays – described by experts as "an embarrassment of riches" – features performances from a cavalcade of postwar British stars. The list includes John Gielgud, Sean Connery, Gemma Jones, Dorothy Tutin, Robert Stephens, Susannah York, John Le Mesurier, Peggy Ashcroft, Patrick Troughton, David Hemmings, Leonard Rossiter, Michael Gambon, Maggie Smith and Jane Asher. The tapes have been unearthed in the Library of Congress in Washington DC.

After months of negotiation, the library and the New York-based public service television station Wnet have agreed to allow the British Film Institute in London to showcase the highlights in November, an occasion
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

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