18 items from 2015
While studies show that prospects for women directors are stunted in Hollywood, a program backed by a Saudi entrepreneur will create opportunities in the U.S. for Arab female filmmakers. In fact, according to the news from Cannes last week, Arab women are increasingly stepping out on the global stage in the business of moviemaking.
On May 19, Saudi philanthropist and film producer Hani Farsi announced a partnership with UCLA to fund a program that will offer three full four-year scholarships to Arab women, through the school of Theater, Film and Television, to earn graduate degrees in directing.
“I think we can bring about social change through this,” Farsi said at Cannes where, as co-owner of French distribution and sales company Le Pacte, he had eight films for sale this year, including Nanni Moretti’s “My Mother.”
Since 2007, Farsi also has been producing and distributing movies with Arab and Muslim themes via his Corniche Pictures. »
- Nick Vivarelli
I’ve written a lot about horror musicals over the years on Icons of Fright, and it would appear that I’m not the only one out there with a deep and abiding love for musical adaptations of beloved horror films. Young Frankenstein, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Evil Dead, Carrie, American Psycho, The Silence Of The Lambs, Re-animator, and Little Shop Of Horrors are just a few horror films to get the musical theatre adaptation. Something about the combination of campy nature of spontaneously bursting into song and blood spraying everywhere is something many of us can’t get enough of. While I’m still waiting for Disney to get their shit together and make a Broadway version of Hercules, I’ve made myself a little dream list of horror films I hope get the musical treatment.
Fred Dekker’s deliciously campy masterpiece is just »
- BJ Colangelo
Ahead of its release this September, Sony has debuted a new poster for its upcoming animated sequel Hotel Transylvania 2, which we have for you here…
See Also: Watch the teaser trailer for Hotel Transylvania 2
Drac’s pack is back for an all-new monster comedy adventure in Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania 2! Everything seems to be changing for the better at Hotel Transylvania… Dracula’s rigid monster-only hotel policy has finally relaxed, opening up its doors to human guests. But behind closed coffins, Drac is worried that his adorable half-human, half-vampire grandson, Dennis, isn’t showing signs of being a vampire. So while Mavis is busy visiting her human in-laws with Johnny – and in for a major cultural shock of her own – “Vampa” Drac enlists his friends Frank, Murray, Wayne and Griffin to put Dennis through a “monster-in-training” boot camp. But little do they know that Drac’s grumpy and very old, »
- Gary Collinson
No two horror fans are alike, and our differing tastes is a large part of why horror remains such a successful genre. Fear is universal, but what exactly inspires that fear varies from person to person. Over on Halloween Love, journalist John Squires tagged me in a “10 Random Horror Questions” survey that’s been circulating on YouTube. Getting to know a writer can help you determine who’s opinion you most align with when looking for film recommendations. I challenge the rest of the Icons crew to do the same.
1. What was the first horror movie you remember watching?
My mother has always loved horror movies. My dad was the type of person that loved to scare other people, but hated being scared. This meant that my mom would often watch horror alone, until they had me. Thinking that I would just be too young to remember, my mom would »
- BJ Colangelo
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Click here for a complete list of our essays. I was one of the first to select years for this particular exercise, which probably allowed me to select the correct year. The answer is, of course, 1974 and all other answers are wrong. No matter what your criteria happens to be, 1974 is going to come out on top. Again, this is not ambiguous or open to debate. We have to start, of course, with the best of the best. "Chinatown" is one of the greatest movies ever made. You can't structure a thriller better than Robert Towne and Roman Polanski do, nor shoot a Los Angeles movie better than John Alonzo has done. Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway give the best performances of their careers, which is no small achievement. If you ask »
- Daniel Fienberg
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Check here for a complete list of our essays. Just one glance at the Oscar nominees for 1998 might make it seem less a questionable choice for “best year in film” — and more an insane one. Instead of a 1974 – The Godfather II, The Conversation, Chinatown, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, etc – or even a 1994, where Shawshank, Quiz Show, and Pulp Fiction lost to Gump – you choose a year where the Oscars would allow Roberto Benigni to climb atop both the figurative and literal chairs of the Shrine? Fine, step away from the Oscars. Would you still celebrate a year that saw not one, but two movies about asteroids threatening the Earth? A year that saw such scars carved across cinematic history as Patch Adams, My Giant, Stepmom, and Krippendorf’s Tribe? It bears repeating: Krippendorf’S Tribe? »
- Michael Oates Palmer
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Click here for a complete list of our essays. How to decide in the grand scheme of things which film year stands above all others? History gives us no clear methodology to unravel this thorny but extremely important question. Is it the year with the highest average score of movies? So a year that averages out to a B + might be the winner over a field strewn with B’s, despite a few A +’s. Or do a few masterpieces lift up a year so far that whatever else happened beyond those three or four films is of no consequence? Both measures are worthy, and the winner by either of those would certainly be a year not to be sneezed at. But I contend the only true measure of a year’s »
- Richard Rushfield
We saw a teaser trailer earlier this month [watch it here], and now Sony Pictures has released a brand new poster for its upcoming animated sequel Hotel Transylvania 2, which you can check out here along with the official synopsis…
Drac’s pack is back for an all-new monster comedy adventure in Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania 2! Everything seems to be changing for the better at Hotel Transylvania… Dracula’s rigid monster-only hotel policy has finally relaxed, opening up its doors to human guests. But behind closed coffins, Drac is worried that his adorable half-human, half-vampire grandson, Dennis, isn’t showing signs of being a vampire. So while Mavis is busy visiting her human in-laws with Johnny – and in for a major cultural shock of her own – “Vampa” Drac enlists his friends Frank, Murray, Wayne and Griffin to put Dennis through a “monster-in-training” boot camp. But little do they know that »
- Gary Collinson
The comedy great received the honour in person in London.
Us comedy writer, actor and director Mel Brooks has been awarded the highest honour of the British Film Institute (BFI), the BFI Fellowship, at a private dinner in London tonight (March 20).
Previous recipients include Sir Christopher Lee, Ralph Fiennes, David Cronenberg, Dame Judi Dench, Isabelle Huppert, Tim Burton, Martin Scorsese and Orson Welles. The honour is awarded by the BFI Board of Governors and is presented for outstanding achievement in film and television
Ahead of the presentation, Brooks said: “I am deeply honoured to be the recipient of the BFI Fellowship and to be inducted into such distinguished company.
“When I was informed that I had been chosen, I was surprised and delighted. Not many Americans have been offered this prestigious award…and for good reason.”
BFI chair Greg Dyke, who hosted the event, said of Brooks: “His brilliant wit and satire have continued to surprise and delight »
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
Ahead of its release later on this year, we’ve been send over the first teaser trailer for animated sequel Hotel Transylvania 2, which sees Mel Brooks (Young Frankenstein) join a voice cast that includes Adam Sandler (That’s My Boy), Andy Samberg (Brooklyn Nine-Nine), Selana Gomez (Spring Breakers) Kevin James (Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2), Steve Buscemi (The Wedding Singer) and David Spade (Grown Ups 2).
Check out the trailer below:
Dracula, Mavis, Jonathan and all of their monster friends are back in the brand new comedy adventure: when the old-old-old-fashioned vampire Vlad arrives at the hotel for an impromptu family get-together, Hotel Transylvania is in for a comic collision of supernatural old-school and modern day cool.
See Also: First international poster for Hotel Transylvania 2
- Luke Owen
The loveable Monster Squad – Dracula, Frank, Wayne, Griffin and Murray – return in the new trailer for Sony Pictures Animations’ Hotel Transylvania 2.
The Drac pack is back for an all-new monster comedy adventure.
Everything seems to be changing for the better at Hotel Transylvania… Dracula’s rigid monster-only hotel policy has finally relaxed, opening up its doors to human guests. But behind closed coffins, Drac is worried that his adorable half-human, half-vampire grandson, Dennis, isn’t showing signs of being a vampire.
So while Mavis is busy visiting her human in-laws with Johnny – and in for a major cultural shock of her own – “Vampa” Drac enlists his friends Frank, Murray, Wayne and Griffin to put Dennis through a “monster-in-training” boot camp.
But little do they know that Drac’s grumpy and very old, old, old school dad Vlad is about to pay a family visit to the hotel. And when »
- Michelle McCue
Mel Brooks has made a career out of spoofing films. From Blazing Saddles to Young Frankenstein and Spaceballs, Brooks has flipped every genre over and given it a nice humorous spanking. So, what better way to pay homage to the Hollywood icon than make porn versions of his movies? Nsfw porn site Wood Rocket has been working on a porn version of Brooks' films called Debbie Does Mel Brooks. In conjunction with Heeb Magazine, a Sfw behind the scenes video has been posted showing »
- Alex Maidy
Back in the day, folks only had a handful of channels to watch on their rabbit-eared tubes, but from 1964–1966, those who liked their laughs draped in a gothic atmosphere could happily bask in the glow of CBS's The Munsters and ABC's The Addams Family. If you have especially fond memories of the former, then take note, because characters from The Munsters are depicted in upcoming Pop! Vinyls from Funko, along with the neck-chomping Nosferatu and the pain-seeking Pinhead as he appeared in Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth. Also recently revealed at New York City's Toy Fair: the Vinyl Idolz of memorable characters from Mel Brooks' classic film, Young Frankenstein.
The Munsters, Nosferatu, and Pinhead Pop! Vinyls are due out in August, while the Young Frankenstein Vinyl Idolz are set for release this fall. We have photos of the figures below (A big thanks to Comic Book Resources for the images! »
- Derek Anderson
Chicago – Like the recent movie-to-stage-musical adaptations, “The Producers” and “Young Frankenstein,” Chicago has become the proving ground before a Broadway premiere. The latest is almost a no-brainer, “The First Wives Club,” adapted from the 1996 film that starred Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton.
The big news is that the original song writing team of Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland (Holland-Dozier-Holland) have reunited to write new music for the show, adding to their familiar hits “Stop in the Name of Love,” and “Reach Out I’ll Be There.” 22 new songs have been added to “The First Wives Club” stage musical, representing the first new output in years from the famous songwriting trio.
Photo credit: First Wives Club The Musical
Portraying the threesome made famous in the film by Midler, Hawn and Keaton is Broadway baby Faith Prince, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Mel Brooks directed such films as "The Producers," "Blazing Saddles," and "Young Frankenstein," but hasn't stepped behind the camera for twenty years. But during a recent interview, Brooks revealed that he may be interested in developing a sequel to his "Spaceballs" comedy. "Maybe I could do another musical, maybe I could do another movie. I was thinking about 'Spaceballs' the other day," he said. "In 'Spaceballs,' in the movie, Bill Pullman says to me, Yogurt, just plain Yogurt, he says 'Do you think we'll ever meet again?' and I say 'Well, I don't know... maybe in Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money.' And I'm thinking now, if I did a movie that came out right after 'Star Wars' comes out . maybe a couple of months later . I'd have a big weekend, you know? No matter what, even if it fell on »
As far as hilarious genre parodies go, you probably won.t be able to find a more beloved film than Mel Brooks. Spaceballs. (Perhaps, with the exception of Brooks. Blazing Saddles or Young Frankenstein.) The 1987 Star Wars satire gloriously took the then-recently-concluded Original Trilogy and mashed it up with a healthy dash of pop-culture lampooning into a heaping helping of hilarity. While rumors of a potential sequel have been floating around ever since, it seems that Brooks. latest comments on the matter show that he remains committed to using The Schwartz to make the film a reality and Soon. On a recent appearance on comedian Adam Corolla.s Take a Knee podcast (recounted on Reddit), Brooks would confirm to the audience that a Spaceballs sequel "is actually going to happen." The comedy icon further expressed that he "really wants to do it", with plans to ask back Rick Moranis and »
What do Sir Ian McKellen, Joy Behar, and Billy Crystal have in common? Other than the obvious talent, charisma, and fame, these three legends—along with the 10 others on this list—have put it all on the line (and the stage) with autobiographical one-person shows. Drawing from their early years, storied careers, and adventurous lives, these famous actors have shared themselves with audiences across the country while doing what they do best. Mel BrooksOne of only 12 EGOTs (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony winners) this comedic luminary took to the stage in Los Angeles for “Mel Brooks: Live at the Geffen,” a one-man, one-night “introspective retrospective” of the director’s life and work. The creator of “The Producers,” “Young Frankenstein,” and many more American comedy classics hit the boards to share stories from his long (and hilarious) career. Missed the live show? HBO is airing a special recording of the legendary event on Saturday, »
The American Film Institute is probably best known for those lists of the 100 Greatest Movies of All Time (y'know... if it's an American production in some way). Well, every year they hold their own awards, because every group of people has to have awards. They recognize the ten best films (for this year, it's eleven due to a tie) and the ten best television programs of the year. There are not winners in these categories, but each one gets celebrated. On that front, I kind of like the AFI approach to awards. Along with the awards, AFI has put together this four and a half minute montage chronicling the last 120 years of film. Now, it would be ridiculous to cover every single year. Instead, they start with 1894's Strong Man and jump every ten years, showcasing films like Rear Window, The Godfather: Part II, Pulp Fiction, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind »
- Mike Shutt
18 items from 2015
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