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Self-taught costume designer who dressed Beatty and Dunaway in Bonnie and Clyde
Theadora Van Runkle was almost 40 and broke, a commercial illustrator drawing fashion ads for the May Department Stores Company to support her children, when she met the movie costume designer Dorothy Jeakins at a party in Los Angeles in 1966. Jeakins had been in the business a long time by then (from Joan of Arc to The Sound of Music), but she was no sketch artist, and she hired Van Runkle on the spot to do that task for the glum epic Hawaii. The engagement lasted barely a month. As payback, Jeakins later called to say: "I've just been asked to do a little western over at Warner Bros" – she couldn't do it because of conflicting schedules – "and I recommended you."
Van Runkle, who has died of lung cancer aged 83, panicked. She had no design training, but she had »
- Veronica Horwell
Go ahead and tell us you click it for the articles, but there's no shame in admitting that what you're really after are the book reviews. And the new issue of Scope, the online journal of film and TV studies from the University of Nottingham, has ten new book reviews. Sampling from one of them, Daniele Rugo writes, "As the title provocatively announces Dudley Andrew's book What Cinema Is! engages in the complex task of responding to André Bazin's attempt to identify the core of the cinematographic creation…. Andrew develops an inspired and insightful, if perhaps nostalgic, roadmap delineating how cinema should proceed to remain faithful to its origins (or to Bazin's original ideas)." Let Catherine Grant be your guide to the full issue.
Take off those berets and fedoras and pay your respects. The great costume designer Theadora Van Runkle, a three time Oscar nominee, passed away this past Friday of lung cancer at 83 years of age [src]. For those who don't immediately connect her name to her movies, know that her work was seismic.
Her most famous creations were actually those done on her very first feature Bonnie & Clyde (1967). She was able to do the picture only after Warren Beatty and the costume designers guild president screamed at each other for half an hour (she was not a guild member then) according to Mark Harris's invaluable tome Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and The Birth of New Hollywood. She had never done a film and at one tense point admitted to Warren Beatty that she had no idea what she was doing.
After Beatty vetoed her first period-specific ideas, she came »
- NATHANIEL R
Celebrated costume designer Theadora Van Runkle has died, aged 83.
The Oscar-nominated fashion icon lost her battle with lung cancer in Los Angeles on Friday.
She also set major fashion trends by creating Dunaway's costumes for The Thomas Crown Affair and she worked as the actress' stylist at the 1968 Oscars.
Van Runkle's many accolades also included a 1983 Emmy Award and a Lifetime Achievement honour from the Costume Designers Guild in 2002. »
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Well known and respected Hollywood costume designer, Theadora Van Runkle, passed away from lung cancer in West Hollywood on 4th November. She was 83.
Van Runkle essentially fell into costume design. While working as a fashion illustrator she happened to meet costume designer Dorothy Jeakins at a function who required a sketch artist for her upcoming project, Hawaii (1966). Van Runkle then took the job that Jeakins turned down as costume designer for Bonnie and Clyde (1967). This was her first experience in the industry. She may not yet have understood the finer realities of costume design (“I just stumbled through” Van Runkle later admitted) but she knew trends inside and out, instigating a timeless look for the film that stands up as a fashion classic today.
- Chris Laverty
"Repression runs rampant in A Dangerous Method, with sexual and romantic desires subsumed beneath societal and ethical constructs in a manner echoed by David Cronenberg's expertly composed direction," begins Nick Schager in Slant. "For his tale of the intellectual relationship — and, later, battle — between Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and his idol/mentor Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen), Cronenberg employs a cool, refined period-décor formalism, his camera movements as deliberate as his characters' external appearances are polished and restrained, and yet his placement of figures within his frame — always slyly conveying their shifting dominator/subjugated dynamics — boast the same electric charge as his subjects' roiling thoughts and passions. Despite its turn-of-the-century setting and visual/tonal modesty, however, Cronenberg's focus remains, as always, on issues of mind/body invasion, corruption, and rebirth, which here revolves around Jung's increasingly knotty relationship with patient Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley), who, over the course of the next decade, »
We take John Barry’s non-Bond retrospective into the 80s, with some of his epic scores of love, lust and loss…
John Barry’s love affair with cinema is well documented. One could not imagine such a torrent of melodic invention pouring forth with such vibrant intensity if he was not enraptured by the cinematic experience: the darkened periphery of the auditoria; the hushed reverence of another world; the minutiae of human emotion playing out on the big screen. Everything he did, from The Beat to Enigma, represented a direct and synchronous passion for lyrical expression alongside the visual language of film.
The young Prendergast got his love of film from his father, Jack Xavier, who was a cinema projectionist in the silent movie era and would subsequently own a chain of cinemas in the North East. One of Barry’s earliest memories was being carried on his dad’s »
Francis Ford Coppola's Twixt will be screened at the Toronto Film Festival in September. Watching this trailer of Coppola's horror thriller, I couldn't help but wonder if it was meant to lure patrons into theaters or to scare them away. If this Twixt trailer is any indication of the sort of cinematic experience Coppola's latest movie will provide, then I guess I can affirm that it'll be nothing like The Godfather, The Godfather: Part II, The Godfather: Part III, The Conversation, Apocalypse Now, or even One from the Heart, Peggy Sue Got Married, and Dracula. Written and directed by Coppola, Twixt features Val Kilmer, Bruce Dern, Ben Chaplin, Elle Fanning, Joanne Whalley, Don Novello, Tom Waits, and David Paymer. It's expected to be released in the United States either later in 2011, or more likely, sometime in 2012. »
- Zac Gille
Before you ask again, please note that I have submitted the podcast to iTunes. Hopefully the submission process will take. The podcast can be heard at the end of this post.
Today, we have a special retrospective podcast for you today. Since Nick has been revisiting Cannes 1986 in all its sidebar and competitive glory and Nathaniel has been gagging on Aliens and Peggy Sue Got Married lately for their 25th anniversarieswe decided to join forces.
Topics include & spin off from:
Sigourney Weaver's "Ripley" or Kathleen Turner's "Peggy Sue"? Molly Ringwald, Farrah Fawcett, Marlee Matlin, Kim Basinger, Beatrice Dalle and dozens more 80s actresses discussed Three French Films: The Green Ray, Betty Blue and Therese Spike Lee, Woody Allen, James Cameron and David Lynch Our favorite films of 1986 -- we share a #1 favorite which has to »
- NATHANIEL R
2011 is now half over. [Gulp] Well that got away from us. If you were offline for June -- and if so my god why? -- please revisit some highlights from the month that was.
Peggy Sue Got Married holds up 25 years later... the first ⅔ at least. Top Ten X Moments the best moments in the Marvel's mutant movie franchise. Red Carpet "Voices of Reason and Flamboyant Firemen" -this was so fun to do.
Unsung Heroes Michael on the "Origins of Love" sequence in Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Curio gets its most popular ep' ever: "Do You Save Your Ticket Stubs?" Dick Tracy 2? Alex attends the Warren Beatty Q&A in Los Angeles Hit Me With Your Best Shot: Moulin Rouge! It remains a "Spectacular! Spectacular!" Top Ten Ewan McGregor Have you seen Beginners yet? So glad he's back.
Most Discussed: 10 Best Picture Nominees... or Less
Most Popular: X-Men: First Class »
- NATHANIEL R
Though I don't recall when it began -- maybe with Rope as just discussed? -- I've been obsessed with one-take scenes for what seems like forever. You know the kind. It's that thrilling moment when the editor seems to go out for a smoke break and the director allows the film and/or performances to fully breathe. That free breathing is probably an illusion since the scenes must be rigidly corseted by the technical and performative choreography required to get it all without "coverage".
When you see a great one take scene or film, even if that "one" take is partly a matter of film trickery (examples: Atonement, Children of Men basically the entirety of Alfred Hitchcock's Rope and Aleksandr Sukorov's Russian Ark and a scene we just discussed from 25 years ago in Peggy Sue Got Married) it can be hard to return to the world of "regular" filmmaking »
- NATHANIEL R
In the new family comedy "Mr. Popper's Penguins," Jim Carrey plays a middle-aged divorcé who is so focused on his business that he loses sight of the meaningful things in life (that is, until he inherits six penguins that show him the way, natch).
It is a very adult role for an A-list Hollywood goofball who is still fondly remembered for talking with his butt cheeks in "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective." Years before that '90s hit made him a household name though, the Canadian actor/comedian was just a regular high school virgin being stalked by a 400-year-old supermodel vampire.
Five years before scoring a TV gig on "In Living Color," the actor moved from Toronto to Los Angeles, worked the stand-up circuit and started auditioning for Hollywood films. »
- Julie Miller
Hit Me With Your Best Shot is a series where we look at favorite images and choose a "best shot" from a pre-selected movie. The moments that most define a film, elevate it, or merely gives us the most visual pleasure. "Best" is a fluid adjective. Two Weeks From Now (June 29th) we'll be discussing Luchino Vischonti's Rocco And His Brothers (1960). Won't you join us? It's supposed to be awesome.
It's all in the transitions with Peggy Sue Got Married. And with Peggy Sue (Kathleen Turner), who begins the picture distraught over her impending divorce and ends the picture by rejecting that new future (divorce) and for the recent past (troubled marriage). In the present tense, she's attending a high school reunion (a celebration of the past) while worrying about her future. And soon, after collapsing on the reunion's stage, she's thrust back into her own past. »
- NATHANIEL R
Have you all been enjoying our sudden obsession with theme weeks, first Moulin Rouge! and now X-Men?
Next week and probably for the rest of June -- it being, well, June -- we'll have a very loose wedding theme (Don't worry if you're not so romantic. Normal blogging shall continue as well). That'll kick off with Wednesday's night's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" episode celebrating Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) on its 25th anniversary. I haven't seen that one in well over a decade so I'm very curious. Have you seen it more recently?
Who are your favorite cinematic brides?
Which onscreen weddings do you think about the most? »
- NATHANIEL R
In the Hit Me With Your Best Shot series we all chime in on what we think of as the best shot from a pre-selected movie. Last week 19 partipicants looked at Moulin Rouge!. This week, it's Fritz Lang's...
The Woman In The Window (1944)
We begin with a great moment in Art Direction. The most curious attribute of The Woman in the Window is it's sexlessness. Despite having all the trappings of a traditional film noir including the femme fatale (Joan Bennett as "Alice Reed" pictured above) there's no sex in the movie, not even the implied offscreen kind. Naturally then, it has to be abstracted so how better to do so than placing a nude statue in Alice Reed's (Joan Bennett) apartment. It keeps her in the room even when she wanders out of it. It also gets framed between her and the three doomed men who want her »
- NATHANIEL R
10|25|50|75|100 in celebration of major film anniversaries
One hundred years ago on this very day, Maureen O'Sullivan was born in Ireland. She went on to become Hollywood's first major female Irish movie star. Though she appeared in The Thin Man (1934) and an early version of Pride and Prejudice (1940) she is best remembered as Jane from six Tarzan adventures. Tomorrow on "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" we'll be looking at Tarzan the Ape Man (1932). The Weismuller and O'Sullivan pairing is basically what people think of when they think of Tarzan at the movies though the character had plentiful interpretations before and since.
Here she is talking about how the controversies that swirled around "Jane" for her skimpy wardrobe.
O'Sullivan retired for most of the 1940s (her thirtysomething years) and in that time she gave us what might have been her greatest gift to the cinema, the incomparable Mia Farrow.
Before her »
- NATHANIEL R
An exciting special episode of this series is coming up on Wednesday night! But until then, let's look ahead. If you're a new reader the concept of this series is that we choose a movie and anyone with a web home can post their choice for "best shot" with or without explanation and we link up. Complete List of Previous Episodes. It's like a tightly focused mini blog-a-thon. Some of the titles readers have been suggesting we'll get to eventually, some never and some I'm purposefully saving for later for various anniversary or other project reasons. [Please note: Somewhere (2010), previously announced, was cancelled due to highly annoying studio contract finagling spoiling our group play experiment. Studios have just started this one-month delay thing where certain titles are only available for purchases for the first 30 days, making for confusing DVD release calendars. If you've already written something up let me know...]
Netflix, Quickflix, Blockbuster, GreenCine, LoveFilm
May 11th Matador (1986) And/Or Law of Desire (1987) [Pedro & Antonio Double Feature]
- NATHANIEL R
Magical realism hits gay film!
In Judas Kiss, a new film now playing the festival circuit, a washed-up filmmaker named Zachary (Charlie David) is talked into judging the student film festival where, 15 years previously, a movie of his made a big splash — a splash that ultimately led nowhere when he squandered his early buzz with bad personal and career choices. Zachary is so disappointed in himself and his past that he's even changed his name from "Danny Reyes."
But the night before the festival, he meets a hot college student named Danny (Richard Harmon), and the two have a torrid one-night stand. The next day, however, Zachary discovers a very disconcerting fact: the "Danny" he slept with is also named Danny Reyes — and he shares much else with Zachary, including the fact that the short film he's entered into the contest, Judas Kiss, is the »
- Brent Hartinger
Dennis Quaid has revealed that he turned down the opportunity to star in Big. In an interview with PopEater, the Legion actor confessed that he walked away from the hit 1988 film as he had been offered roles in several other projects at the time. "I think I turned it down for something else," he recalled. "Well, I can't remember what it was. I also turned down Peggy Sue Got Married... that turned out to be a good choice but it was turning down [Francis Ford] Coppola." He went on to insist that he was not concerned about missing out on a film's (more) »
- By Jennifer Still
We tell you guys every year that one of the most badass conventions you should be attending is Eliot Brodsky's Monsterpalooza in Burbank, California; and once again we're putting two pairs of tickets where our mouth is. Read on for the details of how you can snag one of the pairs for yourself and a friend.
Monsterpalooza (official site here) runs April 8-10, 2011, at Marriott Burbank Convention Center, 2500 Hollywood Way, Burbank, California 91505. You can expect:
Award winning FX artists and celebrities. Monster related artwork displayed and sold. Special presentations. Walk-through Monster Museum.
To enter (and hopefully win), just hit us off with an E-mail Here that includes your Full Name And Mailing Address, and we'll do the rest. We'll notify both winners by Monday, April 4th, so they can make the appropriate plans. Just please note that this contest includes tickets only, not travel or hotel accommodations.
Special Guests »
- Uncle Creepy
1-20 of 34 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
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