11 items from 2015
Read More: Julie Taymor's Visual Extravaganza 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' Hits Theaters (Video) With the epic, lawsuit-riddled catastrophe of the Broadway show "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" behind her, Julie Taymor thought small — sort of. Her version of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" was staged in a Brooklyn theater with fewer than 300 seats, although it still cost north of $4 million and employed projections, puppetry, and more than a dozen children who act as both fairy hordes and onstage crew. Taymor's film of that production is, by contrast, a relatively modest affair, without the grand cinematic flourishes of her film adaptations of "Titus" or "The Tempest," but the simplicity of her approach is deceptive. Like Robert Altman, she brings the cameras onto the stage rather than shooting from afar. If the theatrical audience already enveloped the production's thrust stage, the movie audience is practically sitting on it, »
- Sam Adams
As far as working couples go, director Julie Taymor and composer Elliot Goldenthal might be the most daring, experimental and sophisticated in the showbiz firmament. Their film, theater and opera collaborations combine complex soundscapes with highly stylized visuals.
Their latest phantasmagoria, Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” — a filmed record of Taymor’s staging of the play at the Theatre for a New Audience in Brooklyn that debuted at the 2014 Toronto Film Festival last September — is no different, despite the production’s spare trappings.
“It was really simple onstage,” explains Goldenthal, “just a few projections, and the audience surrounding the actors. It was mainly an actors’ piece.”
And yet the production — which is being presented event-style in approximately 85 theaters for one night only on Monday, June 22 — appears highly cinematic, bathed in stark, moonlight-blue lighting, and adorned with gorgeous costumes that bridge contemporary and period worlds with the spirit world of gods and fairies. »
- Steve Chagollan
Taymor's latest Shakespeare film, shot by her "Frida" cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto, combines her 2014 acclaimed Brooklyn live theater production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" with hand-held close-up filming. (See video highlights of my onstage Q & A with her below.) Shakespeare is Julie Taymor's touchstone. She comes back to him not only in countless stage productions but on film as well, from the exhilarating visual and violent "Titus" with Jessica Lange and Anthony Hopkins to Helen Mirren's incomparable take on Prospero in "The Tempest." Taymor also loves the Beatles ("Across the Universe"), Frida Kahlo ("Frida"), "The Lion King" (the $1 billion-grossing Tony-winning musical), opera (Mozart's "The Magic Flute," life partner Elliot Goldenthal's "Grendel") and her swooping version of the Broadway hit "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark"--for which she successfully sued to get »
- Anne Thompson
A celebration of film and television music was once again at the heart of Krakow’s Film and Music Festival, now in its eighth year.
Running from May 27-31, the event brought together more than 58 international composers - including Stephen Warbeck (Shakespeare in Love, Mon Roi), Ramin Djawadi (Game of Thrones), Jeff Beal (House of Cards), John Lunn (Downton Abbey) and Trevor Morris (The Borgias, The Tudors) – for a culmination of performances, panels and master classes.
“Composers are not often given the attention they deserve,” said Artistic Director Robert Piaskowski. “So we wanted to create a space that presents film music as art, and where audiences can come and appreciate a score’s symphonic sounds.”
Piaskowski is not alone in his interests. The festival now aligns itself as the start of the season, with similar musical events taking place in Tenerife and Cordoba in July and Vienna and Gent (that also hosts the World Soundtrack Awards) in October »
I am a sucker for a good Shakespeare movie. There has been a trend to set the classic works of the Bard in an anachronistic time period like Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet or Julie Taymor's exceptional Titus. But, there is nothing like a well-made movie set in the original time period and style as the source. Justin Kurzel's MacBeth looks to be one of those takes. We have been hearing about this new MacBeth for a long time and it should be especially interesting to now get a look at the film »
- Alex Maidy
Riot This Way: Almeryeda Back to Contemporizing Shakespeare
While many were quick to critique director Michael Almereyda’s Y2K update of Shakespeare’s most notable play, Hamlet, wherein 90’s indie poster boy Ethan Hawke served up the royal brooding bloodline’s infamous fate within the confines of a sleek Manhattan high rise—it happens to be his most acclaimed title to date. Since then, he’s worked on a variety of shorts and documentary projects and unveiled only two other features, book ends that are set in pre and post-Katrina New Orleans (Happy Here and Now; New Orleans Mon Amour). He’s back with a modernized adaptation of one of William Shakespeare’s later and lesser beloved plays, 2014 Venice Film Festival selected Cymbeline. While several of the Bard’s lesser works have been spun into grand cinematic spectacle (such as Julie Taymor’s beautiful Titus or, to a lesser degree, »
- Nicholas Bell
Exclusive: Wme has signed Oscar-nominated, Emmy- and Tony-winning multi-hyphenate Julie Taymor. Her screen credits range from Frida to Across The Universe, Titus and The Tempest, and her stage work includes The Lion King and Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark. She is now preparing to direct Anne Hathaway off-Broadway in Grounded, which opens at the Public in April. Taymor had been a longtime client of Jeff Berg. With all the talk about a paucity of bold female directors… »
As 27 of our 29 Experts predicted, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" won Best Costume Design on Sunday night. It had previously won Costume Design honors from BAFTA and Critics' Choice, as well as the Costume Designers Guild prize for Best Period Design. -Break- This was the fourth Oscar win for costume designer Milena Canonero, who received previous honors for "Barry Lyndon" (1975), "Chariots of Fire" (1981), and "Marie Antoinette" (2006). She was also nominated for "Out of Africa" (1985), "Tucker: The Man and His Dream" (1988), "Dick Tracy" (1990), "Titus" (1999), and "The Affair of the Necklace" (2001) for a career total of nine nominations. The film was the 2/13 favorite with 27 Experts backing it: Thelma Adams (ZEALnyc), Matt Atchity (Rotten Tomatoes), Kyle Buchanan (Vulture), Edward Douglas (Coming Soon), Scott Feinberg (Hollywood Reporter), Thom Geier, Pete ...' »
Hollywood has no shortage of talented composers crafting mostly serviceable tunes for the next young adult literary adaptation or prestige awards tearjerker. But for every auteur like Hans Zimmer and John Williams, you have musical yes men pounding out ominous notes in anticipation of the next horror movie jump scare or making ratatat noise to underscore a superhero chase scene. The film world screams for diverse sounds, but is often left wanting when scores become interchangeable to feed the Hollywood machine. The current film decade is no different from any other in terms of talent, mediocrity, and ingenuity, but could always use a boost from professionals who bring specificity to the table. These five forgotten or diminished artists, each among them with varied yet singular skills, are screaming to be brought back into the Hollywood fold to create their signature sounds.
One of the most prolific composers from the 90’s, »
- Shane Ramirez
Elliot Goldenthal will receive the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers’ Founders Award at the performing rights organization’s 30th annual Film & Television Music Awards, taking place March 9 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills. The honor is reserved for songwriters and composers “who have made pioneering contributions to music by inspiring and influencing their fellow music creators,” according to Ascap.
Goldenthal, who has composed for the stage, screen and opera house, won an Oscar for his score to “Frida,” directed by frequent collaborator Julie Taymor. His other scores include Taymor’s “The Tempest,” “Across the Universe” and “Titus”; Michael Mann’s “Public Enemies” and “Heat”; and Gus Van Sant’s “Drugstore Cowboy.”
“Elliot’s staggering body of »
- Steve Chagollan
The New York Shakespeare Exchange has its finger in more than one pie, and not all of them are, as in Titus Andronicus, filled with human flesh. In addition to its current production of Shakespeare’s gory early crowd-pleaser, the group created The Sonnet Project, which develops a short film shot in a “cultural/historic” NYC location for each sonnet. The results can be viewed online or through a dedicated mobile app (available for Ios or Android). It also runs periodic pub crawls called ShakesBEER, which we can personally recommend as a fun way to experience a few new drinking establishments in the City accompanied by themed scenes or mash-ups from the Bard’s dramatic canon.
Titus follows the increasingly brutal conflict between the title »
- Leah Richards
11 items from 2015
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