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How Director Jennifer Fox Found a Safe Way to Shoot Harrowing Underage Sex Scene in ‘The Tale’

  • The Wrap
As a director shooting the HBO movie “The Tale” based on her own experiences as the survivor of childhood sexual abuse, Jennifer Fox faced a special challenge: how to handle the crucial and horrific sex scene between 13-year-old Jennifer (Isabelle Nélisse) and her grown-up track coach (Jason Ritter).

“That scene is so broken apart, we shot-listed it, and we prepared days before of where the cameras would be, that it didn’t have this great emotional meaning for me that people would expect,” Fox told TheWrap.

And Fox and her production team got creative in how they set up the scene to protect Nélisse, who was 11, turning 12, at the time the film shot on location in Louisiana in 2015.

Also Read: Laura Dern: 'We All Felt Wrenched' by Sexual Abuse Story of HBO's 'The Tale'

“Isabelle was on a vertical bed, and there was never any physical contact between her and Jason,
See full article at The Wrap »

Ellen Burstyn Joins ‘Pale Blue Dot’ Cast Alongside Natalie Portman

Ellen Burstyn Joins ‘Pale Blue Dot’ Cast Alongside Natalie Portman
Noah Hawley‘s sci-fi film Pale Blue Dot (which may not be called Pale Blue Dot anymore) just landed a great new cast member: Exorcist and Requiem for a Dream actress Ellen Burstyn. Other Pale Blue Dot cast members include Natalie Portman, Jon Hamm and Dan Stevens. Legion and Fargo creator Noah Hawley is lining-up his first feature film, and he’s attracting […]

The post Ellen Burstyn Joins ‘Pale Blue Dot’ Cast Alongside Natalie Portman appeared first on /Film.
See full article at Slash Film »

Ellen Burstyn Joins Natalie Portman in Noah Hawley’s Astronaut Drama

Ellen Burstyn Joins Natalie Portman in Noah Hawley’s Astronaut Drama
Ellen Burstyn has joined Natalie Portman and Jon Hamm in Noah Hawley’s new film from Fox Searchlight.

Burstyn will play Portman’s character’s grandmother.

Dan Stevens is also on board to star in the film, which used to titled “Pale Blue Dot.”

Fargo” and “Legion” creator Noah Hawley is directing from a script by Brian C. Brown and Elliott Diguiseppi. Reese Witherspoon, who was attached to star at one point, will produce with Bruna Papandrea.

The still-untitled film follows a female astronaut who, after coming back home from a mission in space, starts to unravel when confronted by her seemingly-perfect life. The film explores the theory that astronauts who spend long periods of time in space lose their sense of reality when they return home.

Hamm will play Portman’s fellow astronaut who she aggressively pursues after returning to Earth.

With “Legion” wrapped and Hawley’s other FX series,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Ellen Burstyn Joins Natalie Portman in Fox Searchlight's Noah Hawley Drama (Exclusive)

Ellen Burstyn Joins Natalie Portman in Fox Searchlight's Noah Hawley Drama (Exclusive)
Oscar-winner Ellen Burstyn will join Natalie Portman in Fox Searchlight's now-untitled drama from Fargo and Legion showrunner Noah Hawley.

The astronaut drama is assembling an A-list flight crew, including Jon Hamm, Zazie Beetz and Dan Stevens, as well as Portman.

Formerly titled Pale Blue Dot, the film centers on a married astronaut (Portman) who returns to Earth after a mission and begins an affair with a fellow astronaut (Hamm). She heads into a downward spiral as she loses her connection to her family — a condition that can afflict those who spend a long time in space — and when her ...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Glenda Jackson: Tony Award for ‘Three Tall Women’ will make her 24th Triple Crown winner

Glenda Jackson: Tony Award for ‘Three Tall Women’ will make her 24th Triple Crown winner
Glenda Jackson is almost certain to win her first Tony Award on Sunday for her acclaimed performance in the first Broadway production of Edward Albee’s 1991 Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Three Tall Women.” She will become the 24th performer to win the Triple Crown of show business awards and cap off a comeback after an absence of almost a quarter of a century.

Jackson walked away from acting in 1992 to began a second career in politics, winning election to the British parliament. Yes, Ronald Reagan did the same thing but he had never reached the level of acclaim and success that Jackson had in Hollywood.

She is one of only 14 two-time Best Actress Oscar winners and she pulled off this double act in just four years. What makes that even more surprising is that she expressed a certain disdain for awards and didn’t attend any of the four Academy Awards
See full article at Gold Derby »

Toni Collette Is Explosive, but ‘Hereditary’ Is Horrific: How Genre Bias Can Kill Oscar Chances

Toni Collette Is Explosive, but ‘Hereditary’ Is Horrific: How Genre Bias Can Kill Oscar Chances
Winning any Oscar nomination demands that enough Academy voters see the movie in the first place. A demanding film can make the cut — “The Shape of Water,” “12 Years a Slave,” “Moonlight,” and “Get Out” prove that — but in order to go the distance, they first had to become must-see films. For most genre movies, that’s a bridge too far.

Far more horror films have been nominated for Oscars than have won. A scary movie needs serious elevation to score Oscar nods: Either it penetrates the culture as a drama, or boasts such amazing acting or production values that its quality can’t be denied.

Jordan Peele’s “Get Out” rose above its horror DNA thanks to the preferential ballot and to an expanded younger and more diverse Academy membership. This timely racial thriller, which started production during the Obama administration and was released in the age of Trump,
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Toni Collette Is Explosive, but ‘Hereditary’ Is Horrific: How Genre Bias Can Kill Oscar Chances

Toni Collette Is Explosive, but ‘Hereditary’ Is Horrific: How Genre Bias Can Kill Oscar Chances
Winning any Oscar nomination demands that enough Academy voters see the movie in the first place. A demanding film can make the cut — “The Shape of Water,” “12 Years a Slave,” “Moonlight,” and “Get Out” prove that — but in order to go the distance, they first had to become must-see films. For most genre movies, that’s a bridge too far.

Far more horror films have been nominated for Oscars than have won. A scary movie needs serious elevation to score Oscar nods: Either it penetrates the culture as a drama, or boasts such amazing acting or production values that its quality can’t be denied.

Jordan Peele’s “Get Out” rose above its horror DNA thanks to the preferential ballot and to an expanded younger and more diverse Academy membership. This timely racial thriller, which started production during the Obama administration and was released in the age of Trump,
See full article at Indiewire »

Emmy Predictions 2018: Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Emmy Predictions 2018: Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Last Year’s Winner: Laura Dern, “Big Little Lies

Still Eligible: No.

Hot Streak: FX and HBO have both earned nominations in this category since 2012 (and HBO’s streak dates back to 2003).

Fun Fact: For the first time since “Downton Abbey” made the jump from limited series to drama series in 2013, not a single anthology series (or other franchise) that was nominated the year prior is in contention this year.

It’s the movie stars vs. the TV favorites in a surprisingly competitive Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or TV Movie race. Penelope Cruz (“American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace”) and Nicole Kidman (“Top of the Lake: China Girl”) are looking to crack in for respected turns in prestige projects; Cruz as the sister of a fashion icon who became a star, Donatella Versace, and Kidman as an Australian mother, Julia, whose story dovetails with Elisabeth Moss’ detective.
See full article at Indiewire »

Drama Desk Awards ignore off-Broadway nominees in favor of Tony Awards contenders

While the Drama Desk Awards nominate a slew of off-Broadway fare, almost all of the winners come from Broadway, even when there are only one or two of these bigger budget shows in the running in a race. That was once again the case on Sunday when 10 of the 12 of the winners in the play categories were Broadway productions. On the musical front, it was 14 for 16, with only the off-Broadway tuner “Desperate Measures” breaking through with wins for both lyrics and music. (Read the full report on the 2018 Drama Desk Awards and see the full list of Drama Desk Awards winners.)

What’s most disappointing about this continual shut-out of off-Broadway shows is that these kudos were created to do just the opposite. While the Tony Awards, which date back to 1947, celebrate the best of Broadway, the Drama Desk kudos were begun in 1955 to celebrate the rest of the New York theater world.
See full article at Gold Derby »

Sundance London 2018 Review – The Tale (2017)

The Tale, 2017.

Directed by Jennifer Fox.

Starring Laura Dern, Isabelle Nelisse, Jason Ritter, Elizabeth Debicki, Ellen Burstyn, and Common.

Synopsis:

Documentary maker Jennifer seems to have it all until a story she wrote at the age of 13 is discovered by her mother. It’s about a special relationship with an adult and Jennifer realises that what’s in the story is nothing like her personal memories of what happened. She sets out to find the people involved and discover if the stories she’d told herself were actually true.

Brave” is probably the first word that comes to mind to describe Jennifer Fox’s The Tale, which opened this year’s Sundance London. Yet it’s probably not the right one. It sounds unintentionally patronising and she probably wouldn’t accept it. But it takes a special kind of courage – nay, pure guts – to tell the world that you’ve
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Sundance London 2018. Abuse Remembered and Confronted in Jennifer Fox's "The Tale"

Sundance Film Festival ‘18: London runs May 30 - June 2, 2018 at Picturehouse Central.If anyone is in the position to understand the vagaries of memory, it has to be documentary filmmakers. Their job requires them to sift through other people’s recollections and build stories out of them; to determine where self-delusion or forgetfulness or exaggeration play a role. In The Tale, the documentarian becomes her own subject, delving into her fragmented childhood memories with the research skills someone in her profession has honed. Jennifer Fox’s autobiographical feature is new territory for her; her previous work has all been documentary. Jennifer is played by Laura Dern as an accomplished New York City filmmaker who finds herself falling down a wormhole of investigation about a disturbing childhood relationship she remembers as being innocent. When Jennifer’s mother (a terse Ellen Burstyn) discovers an English paper from her daughter’s youth, she
See full article at MUBI »

The Tale Review – Sundance London 2018

In her first fiction feature The Tale, acclaimed documentarian Jennifer Fox approaches the subject of her own childhood sexual abuse with an unfathomable amount of honesty and unequaled bravery in a film which is set to become a seminal cinematic events in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

Starring Laura Dern as a taller and blonder Jennifer Fox, the film plays on our own perception of memory and what we choose to remember and opt to subconsciously forget from traumatic events. Presenting its audience with a narrative which challenges its own subject’s recollection of events, The Tale is likely to leave a lasting impression on our collective memories as one of the most important stories ever told by a female filmmaker.

Jenny (Laura Dern), is an accomplished documentary director and university professor whose work has taken her all the around the world, and has often put her in some very dangerous situations.
See full article at HeyUGuys »

TCM Classic Film Festival: Jeff Bridges and William Friedkin recall Oscar-winning films at 9th annual gala

TCM Classic Film Festival: Jeff Bridges and William Friedkin recall Oscar-winning films at 9th annual gala
Here is the third part of Gold Derby’s coverage of the 9th Annual TCM Classic Film Festival where Oscar winners and film fans gathered at Hollywood’s famous Chinese Theater. (Also check out Part 1 and Part 2 of our report.) Each day was filled with Oscar winners sharing stories and here are some of the best.

William Friedkin (1972 Best Director for “The French Connection”) gave one of the most enthusiastic and engaging presentations of the festival for “The Exorcist.” At 82 he clearly still loves talking about one of his biggest successes. Friedkin discussed how a lot of bigger stars were approached before the role of the mother was eventually given to Ellen Burstyn (who was a relative newcomer to film at this point.) Audrey Hepburn agreed to take the role but only if it would be shot in Italy. Anne Bancroft was interested but then found out she was pregnant.
See full article at Gold Derby »

Sundance London: ‘The Tale’ Review: Dir. Jennifer Fox (2018)

The Tale review: Documentary filmmaker Jennifer Fox makes an impressive, emotionally-charged, deeply personal debut dramatic feature with this impressive opener to the 2018 Sundance London festival.

The Tale review by Paul Heath.

The Tale review

There’s a moment halfway through Jennifer Fox’s outstanding debut dramatic feature where Laura Dern’s university professor asks one of her female students to respond to a really rather personal, sexual question in a crowded room full of her peers. Its a blunt tactic used to assist their interviewing technique, one that Fox’s autobiographical tale takes throughout, and while her film is also a very slow-burner, has no fear in representing a truthful, forthright and absolutely fearless account of the filmmaker’s devastating past.

Dern is Jennifer Fox. Fox was abused when she was 13-years-old and this feature documents the path she took later in life, looking back to her younger days when
See full article at The Hollywood News »

A Reflection on "The Tale"

By Spencer Coile

I intended for this to be a formal review of Jennifer Fox’s autobiographical HBO film, The Tale. I was going to dive into the Sundance darling and discuss it, celebrate it, and critique it the way we do most movies. I was going to conclude with the film’s Emmy chances, where it will no doubt be a worthy contender for Best Made for TV Movie and Laura Dern in Leading Actress. And it’s no wonder – it was critically lauded as a timely reflection of the #MeToo movement.

But a "review" would be doing Fox’s story a disservice. This is, first and foremost, a personal story about Fox's reconciliation with the past as a means of understanding her present and future. The Tale was acclaimed coming out of Sundance, and was quickly scooped up by HBO. Gone were Dern’s Oscar chances, but this
See full article at FilmExperience »

Can John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf still earn Emmy love despite icky ‘Roseanne’ cancellation?

Can John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf still earn Emmy love despite icky ‘Roseanne’ cancellation?
When Kristin Chenoweth won an Emmy in 2009 for the cancelled ABC comedy “Pushing Daisies,” she joked, “I’m unemployed now, so I’d like to be on ‘Mad Men'” (watch below). Chenoweth’s triumph was hardly the first time someone prevailed at the Emmys for a cancelled TV show, and that’s the one potential bright spot for “Roseanne” scene-stealers John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf following the show’s shocking cancellation. However, while Goodman and Metcalf are still in the running for Emmys, might the icky demise of “Roseanne” thanks to Roseanne Barr‘s racist tweets make the entire program toxic to voters?

Seeabc cancels ‘Roseanne’ following Roseanne Barr’s ‘repugnant’ tweet

Goodman is no stranger to prevailing at the Emmys for cancelled shows, doing just that for “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip” a decade ago. He won Best Drama Guest Actor at the 2007 ceremony after NBC turned
See full article at Gold Derby »

Laura Dern gives one of the performances of the year so far in “The Tale”

By and large, the 2018 Sundance Film Festival was considered to be one that wouldn’t have much of an impact come Oscar season. Most years, at least one or two movies end up in play for Academy Awards. This year, however, there didn’t seem to be that sort of a lineup, especially once things began screen. Sure, there are contenders that could still surprise, but nothing seemed to be obvious. There was one interesting exception though, and that’s The Tale, which drew incredible buzz for star Laura Dern. The film was then oddly acquired by HBO, which premiered it over the weekend. Now, she’ll contend for Emmy and Golden Globe love instead of the Oscars. The movie is about as dark a drama as it gets. The vague IMDb description is as follows: “An investigation into one woman’s memory as she is forced to re-examine her
See full article at Hollywoodnews.com »

Will acclaimed turn in ‘The Tale’ earn Ellen Burstyn her ninth Emmy Awards nomination?

Will acclaimed turn in ‘The Tale’ earn Ellen Burstyn her ninth Emmy Awards nomination?
With an Oscar, a Tony Award and two Emmy Awards on her mantle, Ellen Burstyn has, over the past half century, been a true awards season favorite. This year, with her turn in HBO’s “The Tale,” Burstyn is poised to add even more recognition to her resume.

The autobiographical film, written and directed by Jennifer Fox, earned rave reviews earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival and is scheduled to premiere on HBO on May 26. “The Tale” follows Fox (portrayed by Laura Dern), a professor and documentary filmmaker whose life his rattled after her mother (Burstyn) discovers a story Fox wrote at age 13 about a relationship she had with her running coach (Jason Ritter) and horseback riding instructor (Elizabeth Debicki). The revelation forces Fox to dig deeper into her memories to uncover the truths she has been suppressing for so many years.

In his review, Matt Goldberg of Collider observed,
See full article at Gold Derby »

‘The Tale’: Jennifer Fox on Putting Herself in This True Story, Choosing HBO Over Theaters, and What’s Next

‘The Tale’: Jennifer Fox on Putting Herself in This True Story, Choosing HBO Over Theaters, and What’s Next
[Editor’s Note: The following interview contains mild spoilers for “The Tale.”]

Jennifer Fox wants you to see “The Tale.” While most writer-directors are invested in finding an audience for their picture, Fox’s motivations are deeper. The new HBO film isn’t just her first feature as a writer and first scripted film as a director; it’s her own story, crafted (and re-crafted) while she was living it, and meant to help the world understand the complex nature of childhood sexual abuse — abuse she experienced first-hand.

“My goal was to understand how and why it happened and to help other people and the world understand how complex and nuanced these events are,” Fox said in an interview with IndieWire. “That’s the purpose of this film.”

The Tale” focuses on Jennifer (Laura Dern), a documentary filmmaker who’s forced to reassess an adolescent relationship with two coaches, a horse riding instructor named Mrs. G (Elizabeth Debicki) and her friend and track coach,
See full article at Indiewire »

TV Review: Laura Dern in HBO’s ‘The Tale’

TV Review: Laura Dern in HBO’s ‘The Tale’
The Tale” opens with a warning: “The story you’re about to see is true … as far as I know.”

What follows is a painstaking, wrenching examination into exploring what’s “true” and what’s not, what’s imagined and what’s real, the stories we create in order to protect ourselves from the potential wreckage that lies dormant inside us. As written and directed by documentarian Jennifer Fox from her own experiences, “The Tale” follows Jenny (Laura Dern) as she reevaluates the first “relationship” she had with an adult man when she was just 13 years old. Disoriented, she weaves
See full article at Variety - TV News »
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