13 items from 2016
Against a backdrop of rural poverty, Joe Stephenson’s heart-wrenching drama heads for a climax sticky with violence and horrible secrets
Somewhere in what would seem to be East Anglia, judging by the road names, two brothers live together in a fetid caravan. Older brother Polly (Morgan Watkins), a bad-tempered thug, does the bare minimum to look after the younger Richard (Scott Chambers) who has learning difficulties but a gentle soul. Richard’s only friend is his pet chicken Fiona, a docile bantam he takes everywhere, until he makes friends with new neighbour Annabel (Yasmin Paige, from Submarine).
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- Leslie Felperin
Exclusive: HanWay inks key deals on documentary.
HanWay Select has secured key territories on Louis Theroux’s impish London and Tribeca documentary My Scientology Movie, including with indie stalwart Magnolia for the Us and Amy distributor Altitude for the UK.
Deals have also been agreed for Australia (Madman), Belgium (Dalton) and Netherlands (Cinema Delicatessen).
Directed by John Dower, My Scientology Movie sees well-known documentarian and broadcaster Theroux immerse himself in the controversial religion’s teachings and practises with one of its key defectors, Mark “Marty” Rathbun.
The film marks Theroux’s first foray into the theatrical market.
Altitude’s head »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Andreas Wiseman)
It feels like it’s rare to find an actor who doesn’t at some point in his or her career get the urge to direct. Even stars barely out of their teens discuss the desire to direct in interviews (some even get around to it: “Submarine” actor Craig Roberts premiered his first film “Just Jim” last year at the age of 24, and former child star Xavier Dolan was only 20 when he made his first). Sometimes the results are terrible, as anyone who saw Mark Ruffalo’s “Sympathy For Delicious” or Ryan Gosling’s “Lost River,” to name but two recent examples, would tell you. Read More: 10 Strong Directorial Debuts From Actors-Turned-Directors But sometimes, such films are terrific. And with “Miles Ahead,” Don Cheadle’s pretty decent first film as director, hitting theaters on Friday (read our review), Nate Parker’s “Birth Of A Nation” storming Sundance, and the news »
- Jessica Kiang and Oliver Lyttelton
Exclusive: Macbeth filmmaker to speak at games, TV and film event for career starters.
Macbeth and Snowtown director Justin Kurzel, currently in post-production on video game adaptation Assassin’s Creed, is to keynote on the film day of BAFTA’s inaugural Guru Live festival for career starters.
The three-day event taking place later this spring at BAFTA’s London HQ is aimed at newcomers to the film, TV and games industries.
Kurzel will discuss his early career starting out as a theatre designer to directing his first feature, the critically acclaimed Snowtown and most recently, his 2015 Bifa and Palme d’Or nominated Macbeth, starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard.
Kurzel is expected to touch on Assassin’s Creed, which also stars Fassbender and Cotillard.
The event will include masterclasses, panels and keynote talks while speakers include games producer Dan Gray (Monument Valley); film producer Mark Herbert (This Is England, Submarine); games writer Meg Jayanth (80 Days); talent agent for »
- email@example.com (Andreas Wiseman)
Read More: BAFTA Awards: Full List of Winners BAFTA announced this morning that they are launching a new festival this year dubbed "Guru Live," where established names from the film, television and game industries will closely interact with aspiring artists and technicians. The week-long networking event will include masterclasses, panels and keynote talks by professionals yet to be announced. However, BAFTA has made a point to include that the vast array of notable names speaking during the summer festival will includes many of its winners and nominees from the spring's BAFTA Awards. Those who have confirmed their place speaking in the summer festival include games producer Dan Gray ("Monument Valley"), film producer Mark Herbert ("This Is England," "Submarine"), games writer Meg Jayanth ("80 Days"), talent agent for film and television Sara Put and games creators Luke »
- Elle Leonsis
This Is England producer will participate in the three-day event for budding creative professionals.
BAFTA has revealed the line-up for its inaugural BAFTA Guru Live event, a three-day festival for aspiring film, television and games professionals.
Running from April 30 – May 2 at BAFTA’s Piccadilly venue in London, Guru Live will involve masterclasses, panels and keynote talks from industry figures, including BAFTA-winning producer Mark Herbert (This Is England, Submarine, Four Lions).
The film sessions include panels on how to produce a debut feature, how to find funding, and how to be a successful freelancer, with further programme details to be announced closer to the time.
Tickets for individual sessions will cost £6, while professionals with at least six months’ experience can purchase one of 150 all-access tickets (£40) that include a day of »
Lionsgate U.K. has acquired U.K. distribution rights to “Ghost Stories,” based on the Olivier nominated supernatural stage production, co-written and directed by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman, and set to star Martin Freeman (“The Hobbit” franchise, “Captain America: Civil War,” TV’s “Fargo”) and BAFTA award-winner George MacKay (“Pride,” “Sunshine on Leith”), with Andy Nyman reprising his role as Professor Goodman. Principal photography will start in September.
Phillip Goodman, professor of psychology and arch-sceptic has his rationality tested to the hilt when he receives a letter apparently from beyond the grave. His mentor Charles Cameron, the “original” TV parapsychologist, went missing 15 years before, presumed dead and yet now he writes to Goodman saying that the pair must meet.
Cameron, it seems, is still very much alive. And he needs Goodman to find a rational explanation for three unsolved cases that have shaken Cameron to his core. As Goodman investigates, »
- Leo Barraclough
Can you think of a better pair of unlikely road trip companions than Paul Rudd and Selena Gomez? The two put that theory to the test in The Fundamentals of Caring, an adaptation of the 2012 sick-lit hit The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving. In the film, Rudd plays Ben, an out-of-work novelist, who's become a home health aide in the wake of a tragedy, while British up-and-comer Craig Roberts (Submarine; a dead-ringer young Martin Freeman) plays Trevor, his foul-mouthed 18-year-old ward, who's confined to a wheelchair with muscular dystrophy. The pair bond over a mutually crass sense of humor — Trevor's first question to Ben is, "How would you wipe my ass?" — and eventually Ben convinces Trevor's overprotective mother (Jennifer Ehle) to let her son go out and experience the world. They head off on a road trip to all the places Trevor has become obsessed with while watching the local »
- Jada Yuan
Films centered around disabled people often focus on the inevitable demise of their main characters. Not so in the bracingly optimistic road movie The Fundamentals of Caring, a witty and at times very funny bromance between Craig Roberts’ wheelchair-bound teenager and his carer, a perfectly-cast Paul Rudd. Writer-director Rob Burnett, adapting Jonathan Evison’s The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, finds nuggets of comedy in the blindspots in your typical accounts of degenerative diseases.
Rudd’s Ben is a former writer who, after a tragedy involving his son, decides to change track and become a $9-an-hour carer. His first client is potty-mouthed Trevor, a Brit with muscular dystrophy and a caustic humor who throws insults like confetti. At first, Trevor hates leaving his living room and the American TV he watches so much. But when his single mother needs to travel to Atlanta on business, he warms to the idea of »
- Ed Frankl
Careworn Crucibles: Burnett’s Clichés Prove Reading is Fundamental
Writer and producer Rob Burnett, who has a healthy television resume with contributions such as “Ed” and “Late Show with David Letterman,” adapts Jonathan Evison’s novel The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving for his sophomore effort. With its title slightly tweaked to be less of a mouthful for its intended audience, Burnett achieves a cloying, middle-of-the-road miasma of clichés strung together with unabashed glee. Though the film enjoys a foul-mouthed novelty by eschewing the trap of a PG-13 MPAA rating, it hardly makes this adolescent effort any more adult oriented. Packed with enough quirky supporting characters to make this sugary coated confection more of a diabetic threat, the successful chemistry between its two affable leads gets lost in Burnett’s swamp of emotional manipulation. However, audiences who enjoy predicting every familiar beat of their tender hearted, conservatively minded melodramas will probably »
- Nicholas Bell
Indie-comedy cliches get a crowdpleasing workout in “The Fundamentals of Caring,” as a grieving father, a teen with a rare disease, a foul-mouthed former child star and a quirk-filled road trip all add up to what would’ve been among the hottest titles at Sundance 2004. Solid performances and some genuinely sharp humor elevate writer-director Rob Burnett’s second feature, but the theatrical market isn’t what it used to be for this kind of product. Already acquired by Netflix for Svod in a pricey pre-fest pick-up, that venue sounds like the best bet to connect with audiences.
With material this familiar, casting is crucial. And Burnett has a pair of aces up his sleeve in Paul Rudd and Craig Roberts (“Submarine,” Amazon’s “Red Oaks”) as an emotionally crippled caregiver and his maturity-impaired ward, respectively. Ben Benjamin (Rudd) is a retired novelist in Seattle who spends most of his waking »
- Geoff Berkshire
Exclusive: Cliff Edge Pictures will develop and produce film and TV projects, starting with the Submarine star’s next feature as a director.
British actor Craig Roberts, who made his directorial debut with Just Jim last year, is launching a London-based production outfit titled Cliff Edge Pictures with that film’s producers, Pip Broughton and Adrian Bate.
Roberts is perhaps best known for his lead role in Richard Ayoade’s 2010 feature Submarine but has since taken roles in major Us comedies including 22 Jump Street and Neighbors as well as Amazon original series Red Oaks and Sundance title The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving.
Cliff Edge Pictures will develop, raise finance and produce film and TV projects with Roberts as creative lead, and will kick off its slate with his second feature as a director, In My Oils, which is in the early stages of pre-production.
In My Oils has a script penned by Roberts and will be set »
Just Jim, 2015.
Written and Directed by Craig Roberts.
A socially awkward Welsh teenager has his life altered forever when an enigmatic American moves in next door.
Impressing with its range of influences and studious attention to detail, Just Jim is a strikingly stylish directorial début from actor Craig Roberts (Submarine). It is his willingness to display all of his favoured genres and tropes that is simultaneously the film’s biggest draw and also its most obvious fault.
There is a film buff’s energy and dedication to cinema surrounding the feature which is both endearing and impressive, but occasionally grates with its exuberant wish to display all of the filmmaker’s cinematic concerns.
Also written by and starring Roberts, the film is an intriguing feature and it will be interesting to see how this talent develops. »
- Robert W Monk
13 items from 2016
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