4 items from 2013
Recently I went to the BFI (British Film Institute) Mediatheque in Newcastle upon Tyne, not far from the WhatCulture! head office. Inside the old building of the Discovery Museum where the Mediatheque is located, I found a small dimly lit art-deco room, and was able to choose from a huge selection of British films available to view for free from the BFI archives and collections. Browsing through the list of clips, scenes, shorts and films, I stopped and chose one immediately. Stormy Monday.
Stormy Monday is a 1988 British romantic thriller, the feature-film directorial debut of Mike Figgis, who went on to direct the Oscar-winning Leaving Las Vegas in 1995. Figgis creates a special atmosphere within Stormy Monday, framing a young Sean Bean alongside Melanie Griffith at the height of her career. The story revolves around Bean’s character Brendan, as he is drawn in unknowingly to the criminal underworld of Tyneside. »
- Jon Lovatt
The X Factor already has its top 40. Ten acts for each of the four categories - boys, girls, over 25s and groups - were chosen on Thursday's show and will be advancing to a brand new elimination round called the "Four-Chair Challenge," (not to be confused with The Voice). So who made the cut? Keep reading to find out ... The Girls: Khaya Cohen, whose rendition "I Put a Spell on You" wowed the judges, was the first female to make the cut. Rylie Brown, who charmed the judges with her version of Zedd's "Clarity" and Simone Torres, whose memorable version of "Mustang Sally, »
- Lee Hernandez
One of my favorite cinematographers working today is Roger Deakins. Over his 40 year career, the British director of photography has worked with everyone from the Coen Bros to Martin Scorsese to Ron Howard to Sam Mendes. He has already received a total of 10 Academy Award nominations, but has yet to win, which is a disappointment for many reasons. However, he's still hard at work, and will probably receive a nomination this year for Prisoners (in theaters this week) after earning a nomination last year for Skyfall. Our friends recently came across this fantastic 9-minute interview with Deakins talking about working with the Coen Brothers and Scorsese. It's a vintage interview, but worth watching if you're a big fan of Deakins like we are. Special thanks to our friends Awards Daily and The Film Stage for first finding this video on YouTube. The 9-minute featurette includes director Mike Figgis (The House, »
- Alex Billington
Oscar-nominated director Mike Figgis argues that the defeatist attitude and outdated structure of Britain's movie industry is preventing film‑makers from flourishing on home soil
Way back in the 1980s, when I decided to try to move from the world of performance art into film-making, I wrote a treatment for a short film called The Side. The name comes from the spectacular street that leads down to the river Tyne. I submitted the treatment to the BFI and in due course got a letter from Peter Sainsbury (the then head of BFI) turning me down for assistance because the material was "visually interesting but lacked content".
Around this time I also applied to the National Film School to study cinema. After a fairly confrontational interview with Lord Puttnam and the great cinematographer Ossie Morris I was rejected. Undaunted, I carried on and eventually The Side became Stormy Monday, my first feature film. »
- Mike Figgis
4 items from 2013
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