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Green-eyed monsters by Anne-Katrin Titze

Paolo Virzì on Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland as Ella and John Spencer: "It is a love story because we were telling the story of two persons who shared an entire lifetime." Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze

In the final installment of my conversation at the St Regis in New York with Paolo Virzi on The Leisure Seeker, the director and co-screenwriter (with Stephen Amidon, Francesca Archibugi and Francesco Piccolo), spoke about adapting the book by Michael Zadoorian. He praised the work of production designer Richard A Wright, and we discussed Carole King's It's Too Late (Baby), Chet Baker's silver lining, jealousy and the monologue by Gretta Conroy of The Dead in James Joyce's The Dubliners, filming the Hemingway cats, and the casting of non-professional actors including his on-set translator Lilia Blouin.

The film stars Helen Mirren who will be honored by the Film Society of Lincoln Center
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Trailer for The Leisure Seeker starring Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland

Universal Pictures has released a trailer for director Paolo Virzi’s upcoming adaptation of Michael Zadoorian’s 2009 novel The Leisure Seeker which sees Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland headlining alongside Christian Mckay, Janel Moloney, Dana Ivey, and Dick Gregory; watch it here…

The Leisure Seeker is the nickname of the old Rv used by Ella (Helen Mirren) and John Spencer (Donald Sutherland) to take vacations with their children in the 1970s. On a summer morning, desperate to escape a destiny of medical care that would have kept them apart forever, the couple astonish their meddling adult children by hopping on board that dated vehicle and dashing down Old Route 1 towards Key West for a new adventure. Their trip through an America they no longer recognize – mixing hilarious moments with others of pure terror – is their chance to retrace a married life nourished by passion and devotion, but also by secret
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

First Trailer For ‘The Leisure Seeker’ Starring Helen Mirren & Donald Sutherland

Universal Pictures has dropped the first trailer for the upcoming drama comedy The Leisure Seeker, starring Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland. The film, which debuted at the Toronto Internation Film Festival in 2017, arrives in UK cinemas on May 4th 2018.

The Leisure Seeker is the nickname of the old Rv used by Ella and John Spencer (Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland) to take vacations with their children in the 1970s. On a summer morning, desperate to escape a destiny of medical care that would have kept them apart forever, the couple astonish their meddling adult children by hopping on board that dated vehicle and dashing down Old Route 1 towards Key West for a new adventure. Their trip through an America they no longer recognize – mixing hilarious moments with others of pure terror – is their chance to retrace a married life nourished by passion and devotion, but also by secret obsessions that
See full article at The Hollywood News »

My 5: ‘West Wing Weekly’ Host Hrishikesh Hirway’s Top ‘West Wing’ Scenes

There is perhaps no bigger West Wing fan than Hrishikesh Hirway, who has turned his longtime love of Aaron Sorkin’s beloved political drama into the popular recap podcast, The West Wing Weekly, co-hosted by none other than Joshua Malina, who played Will Bailey on the show.

Week to week, Hirway and Malina tap into the pop culture fandom (and nostalgia) surrounding the NBC series as they rewatch and discuss episodes of the show. The pair is currently up to season four, episode nine (“Swiss Diplomacy”) of the show’s seven-season run, meaning they’ve recently passed the halfway mark of their ongoing experiment, which has proved to be wildly successful.

“Josh and I were both really surprised by the reaction the podcast got at first. We were really overwhelmed by how many other West Wing fans there are out there and how passionate they are,” Hirway tells Et, adding they dread the end of the series
See full article at Entertainment Tonight »

The West Wing: Aaron Sorkin Would Cast an NBC Star as President in a Reboot

In an in-depth interview with Aaron Sorkin, The Hollywood Reporter asked the prolific creator and producer about the possibility of reviving The West Wing. The TV show ran originally for seven seasons on NBC between 1999 and 2006 and is currently available to Netflix subscribers. Martin Sheen, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Bradley Whitford, Janel Moloney, Joshua Maline, Rob Lowe, Mary McCormack, and Kristin Chenowith star. The Peacock Network has made it clear there is a standing offer to revive the political drama, and Sorkin admits he does think about doing so. Right now, if he had to cast a new President of the United States in The West Wing, he'd choose Sterling K. Brown
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The Leisure Seeker review – Helen Mirren camper van yarn sticks to the middle of the road

Mirren and Donald Sutherland head off along Route 1 for a well-constructed, but not especially original, study of a long-married couple in their golden years

It’s an average morning in the town of Wellesley, Massachusetts, when a middle-aged man flips up the garage door outside his parents’ quiet home. What he sees there freezes his blood and has him fumbling for his phone. The garage is empty; the camper-van has vanished. “Mom and Dad are gone!” he wails. “And you won’t believe this – so is the Leisure Seeker!”

The starting pistol fired, Paolo Virzi’s film springs out of the gate with all the urgency of a well-fed housecat. Ella and John Spencer are ambling out of New England in their 1975 Winnebago, pointed south on Route 1 on a mission to visit Hemingway’s house in Key West. They’re cruising through red-state USA at the peak of the presidential
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

The Touching Cartier Connection Between Princess Diana, Prince William, and Kate Middleton

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The Touching Cartier Connection Between Princess Diana, Prince William, and Kate Middleton
Along with a laid-back lifestyle and charitable spirit, one of the things Princess Diana passed down to her son Prince William was a love for fine jewelry - especially beautiful Cartier watches. After her divorce from Prince Charles, Diana was frequently photographed wearing a gold Cartier Tank Francaise, a gift from her father, John Spencer. She bought William a similar timepiece from the famed French label, which she had engraved for one of his birthdays. After her death in August 1997, William chose to keep Diana's Cartier Tank as a memento - and in 2014, he gifted Kate Middleton with the Ballon Bleu de Cartier watch for their third wedding anniversary. Not only was the watch on its own a beautiful way to connect his beloved mother and new wife, but William also went a step further by embedding a sapphire stone into the stainless-steel style to match Kate's engagement ring - which also belonged to Diana.
See full article at Popsugar »

A Guide to Diana's Royal Titles

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A Guide to Diana's Royal Titles
Princess Diana was many things to many people, but at her core, she was a devoted and adoring mother to two boys, Prince William and Prince Harry. The brothers, who were just 15 and 12 years old when their mother tragically passed away in August 1997, have been opening up more and more about the impact her death has had on them as grown men and members of the royal family, most recently in a televised documentary called Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy. Also looking back on Diana's life in the film is her younger brother, Charles the 9th Earl Spencer, who reflected on their childhood growing up at the family estate at Althorp, the same place where Diana's body is now buried. Contrary to popular belief, Diana wasn't exactly a commoner when she met and married Prince Charles. Here are the royal titles she held throughout her life. Related9 Ways
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Edgar Wright interview: Baby Driver, Jason Statham, directing

James Hunt Jun 28, 2017

Edgar Wright chats to us about making Baby Driver, and its long journey to the big screen. Plus the Statham question, of course...

Following a much-publicised departure from Ant-Man, Edgar Wright is back with a new film which he has both written and directed. Baby Driver stars Ansel Elgort alongside the likes of Jon Hamm, Kevin Spacey and Jamie Foxx. We had 15 minutes with Wright to talk about the film's long gestation and how he took it from Wood Green Dhss to the big screen...

So this one's been on the slate for a while. I hear you had the idea for it something like 20 years ago now?

Yeah, it's funny, when I've mentioned that kind of timeline - having the idea 22 years ago - it's true in a sense that I heard a song and visualised a car chase, which is John Spencer Blues Explosion's Bellbottoms,
See full article at Den of Geek »

‘Baby Driver’ Review

Stars: Ansel Elgort, Lily James, Kevin Space, John Hamm, Jamie Foxx | Written and Directed by Edgar Wright

Edgar Wright’s return to American moviemaking is a more earnest and coherent foray than 2010’s Scott Pilgrim, and it’s a blast of pure positive energy after the relatively dour The World’s End. It opens with the eponymous Baby (Ansel Elgort) rocking in his car to The John Spencer Blues Explosion, and it never stops dancing.

Baby is a guy with a permanent Tony Manero swagger. He’s under the wing of gangster boss Doc (Kevin Spacey), who’s both a mentor and gaoler. But Baby has almost paid off his debt and he’s approaching the “one last job” cliché, after which he hopes to hit the road and leave his Atlanta life behind.

Then Baby meets a beautiful waitress, Debora (Lily James). They quickly fall in love. However, the freeway out of the crime world is not clear. Doc needs Baby for yet another last job, working alongside the hyper-macho Buddy (John Hamm) and his scheming girlfriend Darling (Eiza Gonzalez), and the batshit crazy Bats (Jamie Foxx).

Can Baby finish his getaway driver stint and find freedom and a future with Debora? Or is he on a road to oblivion?

Life is a playlist for Baby. A childhood accident left him with tinnitus, and now he drowns out the whining through the power of the iPod, wearing earbuds 23 hours a day and moving to the thrum of the music. (He even samples real-world conversations and mixes them into bad hip-hop.) Wright’s penchant for rhythmic editing has reached its natural zenith, and it’s exhilarating. The British auteur has compiled a soundtrack – and frankly a narrative brevity – of which Tarantino can only dream. And it’s not just the music but the sound design, which is astonishingly detailed and well-choreographed, whether it’s the percussive crack of gunfire, the sad ring of tinnitus, or the intimate singing of wine glasses.

The marketing may have overtones of classic car capers like Sam Peckinpah’s The Getaway or Walter Hill’s The Driver, but really Baby Driver is a mashup of the last few decades of modern action movies. It takes in the muscular physicality and mute cool of the ‘70s; the efficiency and the gaudy aesthetic of the ‘80s and ‘90s; and in its hero shaped by formative tragedy, even includes some of the comic book sensibility of the new century. It also feels like the greatest Grand Theft Auto movie never made. (If only Baby could learn from GTA that sometimes the best way to evade the cops is to stay still until the heat is off.)

Elgort is charming and tragic in a way that he totally wasn’t in The Fault in Our Stars, and he has a great chemistry with James, who pulls off blue collar Georgian with effortless aplomb. In supporting roles, Spacey brings gravitas and grades of grey to his deadpan mobster, while Foxx is genuinely funny and menacing.

But Hamm is the real psychotic of the troupe. Unlike Bats, Buddy comes in the guise of a friend, before finally actualising his rage and cruelty. It’s disappointing that the final showdown descends into a mindless macho wrestle, but the storytelling is movingly redeemed in the epilogue.

As ever, Wright is constantly imaginative in deploying his action beats and setpieces. For him, it’s not enough to give us a scuzzy warehouse gun deal, so he delivers it as if a group of bankers are being presented with a fine dining experience. Wright gleefully toys with our expectations throughout, whether it means building to the ultimate car chase, only to show us a foot race; giving us musical intros we think we know but we don’t; or inverting the mentor role by making the kid the carer.

A very welcome stem of morality runs through the movie. It is made abundantly – perhaps excessively – clear that Baby is a boy with a good heart, a million miles from the French Connection-type antihero. Yet, ever the optimist, Wright’s fable is as much a reflection of the countercultural mood of its time as any film from the Nixon era. He is right-on when he proposes that real heroism in the modern age is in decency, accountability and humility – an implicit indictment, perhaps, of today’s prevailing political bleakness.

What a rush this movie is, and what a work of authorship. Employing style in the service of soulfulness, Baby Driver is like Nicolas Winding Refn’s Drive shot through with the sensibility of a Hollywood musical. It’s absolutely an Edgar Wright joint and it’s an absolute joy, and if it isn’t on my end-of-year best-of list then I’ll eat my driving gloves.

Baby Driver is out in cinemas on 28th June 2017.
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Newswire: Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver soundtrack is just massive

Even for a director whose previous films have all made thorough use of pop music, Edgar Wright takes it much further in his new movie Baby Driver. From the opening seconds, the movie is suffused with songs, playing key roles in both the narrative and the extra-diagetical realm of the soundtrack. It’s stuffed to the gills with tunes, is the essential bullet point here (speaking of which, bullets—also a lot of those in the film), much of it used in inventive and memorable ways. So it shouldn’t be that surprising the movie’s official soundtrack is also enormous, clocking in at 30 tracks. Rolling Stone has the complete listing, and it looks pretty damn good.

Starting with The John Spencer Blues Explosion’s “Bellbottoms” and ending with Danger Mouse (featuring Run The Jewels and Big Boi), it’s a widely varying and decades-deep pull of music, but ...
See full article at The AV Club »

The Sweet, Somber Significance of Princess Diana's Final Resting Place

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The Sweet, Somber Significance of Princess Diana's Final Resting Place
Image Source: Getty / Anwar Hussein Seven days after Princess Diana's tragic death in August 1997, she was honored with a public funeral that remains one of the most watched events in history. Millions of people crowded the streets of London to follow the route of Diana's coffin from Kensington Palace along Hyde Park to St. James's Palace, passing Buckingham Palace and observing her memory in a ceremony at Westminster Abbey. Later that day, Diana was taken to her final resting place at her childhood home, the Spencer estate in Althorp. Related50+ Photos That Show the Outpouring of Love at Princess Diana's Public Funeral Image Source: Getty / Barry King Though many attended her funeral, the Princess of Wales was buried privately; the only people present were a close friend, her mother and siblings, Prince Charles, William, Harry, and a clergyman. Diana wore a black dress by Catherine Walker and held
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Emmy Predictions 2017: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Emmy Predictions 2017: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Last Year’s Winner: Ben Mendelsohn, “Bloodline

Still Eligible: No.

Hot Streak: While a number of actors have won this category twice, we haven’t seen a repeat victor since Ray Walston won for “Picket Fences” in 1995 and 1996. That streak will continue at least one more year, given last year’s winner is ineligible in 2017.

Fun Fact: “The West Wing” won this category four times with four different actors: Richard Schiff (2000), Bradley Whitford (2001), John Spencer (2002), and Alan Alda (2006).

With “Game of Thrones” ineligible, this field is wide open. Only three of last year’s six nominees are eligible to earn another nomination in 2017 — Jonathan Banks (“Better Call Saul”), Michael Kelly (“House of Cards”), and Jon Voight (“Ray Donovan”) — meaning even if all three get back in, we’re going to see some new blood this year…

…starting with John Lithgow. The beloved Emmys presence (a five-time winner and 11-time nominee
See full article at Indiewire »

Edgar Wright discusses the origin of his new film Baby Driver

Director Edgar Wright has explained the conception and origins for his new music orientated car thriller Baby Driver.

When the trailer for Edgar Wright’s new film Baby Driver landed, a lot of people became very excited. Coupled with some sterling reviews coming out of SXSW, the hype for the movie was building fast.

Baby Driver, sharing a core premise with that of neon-noir thriller Drive, tells the story of a music dependant getaway driver who falls in love, ultimately having to pull off one last heist. The film stars Ansel Elgort as the peculiarly named Baby, along with an all star cast including Jaime Foxx, John Hamm, and Jon Bernthal.

Wright recently spilled the beans at SXSW on just how the idea for his passion project came to be.

“I had the germ of this movie rattling around in my head for a long time,” said Wright, explaining that 22 years ago,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

The West Wing’s Leo McGarry Explains Addiction Better Than Anything on TV

The West Wing will always go down as one of the best written drama series in the history of television. The Aaron Sorkin scripted show was and is still the best political drama the world has ever seen. But it was so much more than just a show about politics and the White House. The show touched on nearly every major issue in society but did it in a way that was real, authentic, and with a great impact. One of the show’s central characters is Leo McGarry who was played by John Spencer, a part he won an Emmy

The West Wing’s Leo McGarry Explains Addiction Better Than Anything on TV
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The West Wing: Lin-Manuel Miranda Creates a Tribute to the NBC Series

Hamilton isn't the only political figure Lin-Manuel Miranda can rap about. Recently, the Broadway star wrote a musical tribute to the classic NBC series The West Wing, TVLine reports.Created by Aaron Sorkin, the political drama was set in the West Wing of the White House and followed the staff of the fictional U.S. president Jed Bartlet (Martin Sheen). The cast also included Bradley Whitford, Rob Lowe, Richard Schiff, Allison Janney, and John Spencer. The show ran for seven seasons before ending in 2006.Read More…
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Baby Driver: watch the 6-minute opening scene

Simon Brew Kirsten Howard Jul 18, 2017

You can watch the first 6 minutes of Edgar Wright's Baby Driver again right here...

Whether you've already seen director Edgar Wright's latest and want to relive the fantastic opening scene, or you've not got around to catching it yet and just want to know what all the fuss is about, you may be interested in watching the first 6 minutes of Baby Driver, which have found their way online via Columbia Pictures.

See related Deadpool: Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick interview Deadpool: Ryan Reynolds on channeling the character

Ansel Elgort stars as the young getaway driver who wants to get out of the crime business, Kevin Spacey is the boss who wants to pull him back in, and putting the pedal to the metal might be the only way for Baby - who runs on music instead of petrol - to make it
See full article at Den of Geek »

Five Things to Know About Princess Diana’s Stepmother, Raine Spencer — and Why Diana Called Her ‘Acid Raine’

Though the cracks in Princess Diana‘s fairy-tale love story have long been made public, it wouldn’t be complete without one particular character: the “wicked” stepmother, Raine, Countess Spencer â€. who died today at age 87 after a short illness.

Although that’s how their relationship began by many accounts, the real life version was of course far more complicated. Raine became Diana’s stepmother after she married John, Earl Spencer, when Diana was 15 years old. Their relationship was often strained, but the two forged a friendship in the years before Diana’s death.

Raine became Diana’s stepmother after she married Diana’s father,
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

How to Win a Presidential Debate, According to Aaron Sorkin

How to Win a Presidential Debate, According to Aaron Sorkin
Most of Aaron Sorkin’s professional life has been spent making political debates — both personal and public — into poetically entertaining and informative exchanges. In “The West Wing,” he did it every week. Josh and Toby would fight it out until one was proven the victor or a compromise was reached. In “The Newsroom,” Will McAvoy would lambaste politicians, and his reports would often lead to various ethical conversations with his staff.

The point is, Aaron Sorkin knows a thing or two about winning a debate, and our current presidential candidates could learn from his work. We’ve examined the most pertinent examples of debate procedures, and the points below represent key strategies for winning a verbal battle. Apply them wisely.

Read More: How to Watch the First 2016 Presidential Debate: Live Stream [Video]

1. Don’t let third party candidates into the debate.

This one is fairly easy to do these days, considering
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‘The West Wing’ Reunion: Aaron Sorkin on Leaving the Show, Netflix and Larry David’s Advice

‘The West Wing’ Reunion: Aaron Sorkin on Leaving the Show, Netflix and Larry David’s Advice
Aaron Sorkin famously exited “The West Wing” after season four, and he revealed in a panel at the Atx Festival in Austin, Texas on Saturday that he still hasn’t watched the three seasons that followed.

He tried watching the first episode of the fifth season, but only made it about 20 seconds in before he had to stop. “It felt like I was watching someone make out with my wife — it felt horrible,” he told the crowd at “The West Wing Administration” panel, which also featured director Thomas Schlamme and cast members Bradley Whitford, Dulé Hill, Janel Moloney, Joshua Malina, Richard Schiff and Melissa Fitzgerald.

He recalled that when news broke that he was leaving the show, “Seinfeld” co-creator Larry David — who left his series after the seventh of its nine seasons — advised him not to watch the show. “Either the show is going to be great and you’re going to be miserable, or the show is going to be less than great and you’re going to be miserable,” he said David advised him. “Either way you’re going to be miserable.” But Sorkin dismissed his advice as David’s “professional” misery.

But he learned the hard way that David was right, and still doesn’t know what happened after he left. “I was not trying to burn the earth behind me. I was trying to seed it,” he said of the climactic season 4 finale.

Sorkin recalled that the initial pilot for “The West Wing” didn’t test well, but that Warner Bros., the studio behind the drama, created new demographics to push NBC and help recruit new advertisers. Back in 1999, one of those groups — households with Internet access — proved prophetic, as dotcoms flocked to the first episode. “I’m grateful to the Internet for getting this show on the air,” said Sorkin.

The show has since found new life among viewers on Netflix. Sorkin acknowledged he was grateful for the renewed attention, pointing to the young fans in the audience. “I’ve got to learn how to use Netflix,” he joked.

Sorkin talked at length about his writing process, admitting he struggled with finding deeper roles for Toby (Richard Schiff) and C.J. (Allison Janney). For Toby, it took the episode “The Crackpots and These Women,” from the first season. “I really found out where true north was on Toby,” Sorkin said, explaining that he realized Toby’s role was to challenge Bartlet. As for Janney, the cast heard her singing “The Jackal” in her trailer, and soon enough, Sorkin worked the song into an episode.

The cast said Sorkin was skilled at mining their real lives and personalities for the characters. “There is absolutely no distinction between my political point of view and Josh Lyman’s point of view,” said Whitford. Schiff recalled suggesting to Sorkin that Toby might play with a Spalding ball, and that ended up a plot point as well.

The actors heaped praise on Sorkin for his writing, opening the panel with a standing ovation:

#WestWingReunion panel opens with standing ovation to Aaron Sorkin. pic.twitter.com/n5PIIs8cKy

— Debra Birnbaum (@debrabirnbaum) June 11, 2016

Earlier in the day, “West Wing” co-executive producer Kevin Falls (who is now showrunner of Fox’s “Pitch”) was asked about the possibility of a “West Wing” reunion or reboot. He said the question had come up at a cast dinner, but that “it’s had its time.”

The panel wrapped with a nod to actor John Spencer, who played chief of staff Leo McGarry and died during the run of the series in 2005. “If you look up the definition of actor, you would see his picture,” said Schlamme.
See full article at Variety - TV News »
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