6 items from 2016
“Homeland” star Rupert Friend has joined the cast of “Veep” creator Armando Iannucci’s movie “The Death of Stalin,” which toplines “Boardwalk Empire’s” Steve Buscemi, Simon Russell Beale (“Into the Woods,” “My Week with Marilyn”), and Paddy Considine (“Macbeth,” “The World’s End”). Pic is shooting in England and Ukraine.
Also in the ensemble cast are Jason Isaacs (“Fury,” “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”), Olga Kurylenko (“Oblivion,” “Quantum of Solace”), Michael Palin (“Life of Brian,” “A Fish Called Wanda”), Andrea Riseborough (“Birdman,” “Oblivion”), Paul Whitehouse (“Alice in Wonderland,” “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”) and Jeffrey Tambor (“Transparent,” “Arrested Development”) with Adrian McLoughlin (“Thunderpants”) as Stalin.
Iannucci said: “‘The Death of Stalin’ has everything: comedy, tragedy, truth, lies, life, death, bravery and cowardice. All under the shadow of Stalin’s Terror. So I’m really pleased we have an amazingly multifaceted cast who can give us all these things and more. »
- Leo Barraclough and Elsa Keslassy
Everybody and their uncle has played “Angry Birds.” Except some select members of the voice cast of The Angry Birds Movie. The birds-vs.-pigs mobile app and its various editions have been downloaded over 3 billion times, making it the most downloaded mobile game ever. At an Angry Birds Movie press event on Tuesday, Bill Hader, who voices the pig Leonard in the animated film, at first appeared to be a big fan of the popular app. When a reporter asked Hader and the panel of fellow Angry Birds Movie voice actors, did any of you “get particularly obsessed with the game?” the Saturday Night Live alum said, “I got obsessed with the game on a layover, stuck on a plane.” Later during the Q&A — which, all in all, was hilarious, with a panel of four comedic actors — another press member asked, “Which level of the game had you most stumped? »
- Emily Rome
Regular readers of Den Of Geek will well know that we're sizeable fans of the comedy Bill. It's available on DVD now, and we can't recommend it highly enough.
What wasn't so well known at the time of its release was that Bill went through a distributor change last year, which at one stage looked like it might derail a wide cinema release, and thus keep the movie away from many people's eyeballs. We thus spoke to director Richard Bracewell about the film, and the behind the scenes story of just what was going on...
Can we dig into the untold story underpinning Bill? In particular, the problems that most didn't see, about simply getting the film released? Can you take us through what happened? Because we »
Legendary comedian John Cleese has weighed in on the tumultuous controversy about how political correctness is spoiling comedy. He fears that oversensitivity could lead to an “Orwellian” society where ideas are not freely exchanged.
John Cleese was the co-creator of Monty Python, the greatest comedy ensemble of all time, as well as the mastermind behind Fawlty Towers, one of the funniest sitcoms ever made. He’s experienced his share of controversy, such as the backlash he received when he and his Python partners released The Life of Brian. Now he’s wading hip-deep into another controversy.
In an interview for the website Big Think, the 76 year old Cleese expressed his thoughts on the current state of entertainment and media where hyper-sensitive, easily offended people are ruining the party for everyone. He feels comedy is an important part of society because it points to the foibles of our culture and that »
- email@example.com (Rob Young)
This week, Neil Calloway argues that far from increasing revenues in conservative countries, by allowing censored versions of their movies to be shown, Hollywood will ultimately lose out…
This week brought the news that transgender period drama The Danish Girl has been banned in Qatar. I doubt Working Title will be too upset that their film isn’t being shown in a small, conservative country of about two million people (roughly a quarter of the population of New York City or London), and if I made a film that had been banned due to its apparent “moral depravity” I’d put that quote on the poster, but as studios look to expand their international box office, you can expect this to increasingly become an issue with films.
Banning films in their entirety rarely happens in the West now, but the occasional film does get stopped from being released – in 2015, the »
- Neil Calloway
Let’s end the year with a celebration of the funniest comedy scripts ever written. The Writer’s Guild of America has chosen the 101 best laugh-getting screenplays. Keep in mind that this is all about the writing, not the cast or the director.
1.Annie Hall (1977)
2. Some Like it Hot (1959)
3. Groundhog Day (1993)
4. Airplane! (1980)
5. Tootsie (1982)
6. Young Frankenstein (1974)
8. Blazing Saddles (1974)
9. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
10. National Lampoon’s Animal House (1978)
11. This is Spinal Tap (1984)
12. The Producers (1967)
13. The Big Lebowski (1998)
14. Ghostbusters (1984)
15. When Harry Met Sally (1989)
16. Bridesmaids (2011)
17. Duck Soup (1933)
18. There’s Something About Mary (1998)
19. The Jerk (1979)
20. A Fish Called Wanda (1988)
21. His Girl Friday (1940)
22. The Princess Bride (1987)
23. Raising Arizona (1987)
24. Bringing Up Baby (1938)
25. Caddyshack (1980)
26. Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979)
27. The Graduate (1967)
28. The Apartment (1960)
30. The Hangover (2009)
31. The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
32. The Lady Eve »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Rob Young)
6 items from 2016
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