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Faces to watch in 2014 - Alexa Davies

  • ScreenTerrier
Look out for young Welsh actress Alexa Davies in 2014.

18 year old Alexa (represented by Bwh), made her film debut last year after a local casting in her native North Wales in 2010, landed her a role in Sara Sugarman's Vinyl.

She will next be seen in Raised By Wolves, a semi-autobiographical series written by Caitlin Moran, set on a Wolverhampton council estate. Alexa plays the younger sister Aretha, opposite Helen Monks as the young Caitlin-character Germaine. The first episode of Raised by Wolves will be shown on 23rd December at 10.50pm on Channel 4.

Alexa will also be seen next year starring alongside Asa Butterfield in feature film X Plus Y, directed by BAFTA winning documentary maker Morgan Matthews, the tale of a maths prodigy team who travel to Taiwan to represent Gb at the International Mathematics Olympiad.

She also made her stage debut earlier this year in No Quarter at the Royal Court.
See full article at ScreenTerrier »

TV Review: ‘House of Versace’

TV Review: ‘House of Versace’
Before Syfy channel perfected the production — or more accurately — the promotion of so-bad-it’s-good movies, Lifetime was synonymous with satisfying guilty pleasures. The net’s latest original, a behind the chiffon look at the Versace fashion dynasty titled “House of Versace,” is a gilded guilt fest certain to leave viewers with 24-karat regret. Even top-notch stars appearing as impeccable real-life knock-offs can’t help the flimsy script, which wears as badly as a cheap polyester blend. It’s the kind of melodramatic TV movie that has one pining for more wire hangers.

Versace fashion was once known almost exclusively for Gianni (Enrico Colantoni) – flamboyant creator of the safety-pin dress and self-proclaimed inventor of the supermodel. The fashion empire of the ’80s and early’ 90s, however, was a family business, run financially by brother Santo (Colm Feore), creatively by Gianni and inspirationally by Donatella (Gina Gershon). They learned their trade from
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Gina Gershon Will Play Donatella Versace in a New Lifetime Movie

Gina Gershon Will Play Donatella Versace in a New Lifetime Movie
Gina Gershon is set to star in a new original TV movie for the Lifetime network based on the life of Donatella Versace, the very blonde, very tan vice president and chief designed of the Versace Group. "House of Versace" will focus on the luxury designer's rise in the fashion world after her brother's tragic slaying in 1997. Sara Sugarman ("Vinyl," "Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen") will direct from a script by Rama Stagner ("Blue Sky," "American Dreams"). Accompanying Gershon in the cast are Raquel Welch (as Lucia), Enrico Colantoni (as Gianni Versace) and Colm Feore (as Santo). The film is based on Wall Street Journal investigative reporter Deborah Balls book "House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder, and Survival," which explored Gianni Versace's murder, Donatella Versace's drug addiction and the reemergence of the Versace brand.  "House of Versace" premieres October 5 on Lifetime, the latest
See full article at Indiewire »

Gina Gershon To Play Donatella Versace In LifeTime’s Biopic House Of Versace

Check this out – Gina Gershon is set to play an Italian fashion designer and current Vice-President of the Versace Group Donatella Versace in Lifetime’s original movie titled House of Versace. But that’s not all, we’ve just learned that Raquel Welch and Enrico Colantoni are also on board for the upcoming biopic. Sounds promising? Sure, why not… At this moment we know that Sara Sugarman is set to direct the movie from a script written by Rama Stagner, which is based on Deborah Ball‘s book House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder. According to the latest reports, the movie will track Donatella’s struggle...

Click to read original and full article: Gina Gershon To Play Donatella Versace In LifeTime’s Biopic House Of Versace on http://www.filmofilia.com
See full article at Filmofilia »

Gina Gershon To Play Donatella Versace For Lifetime

Gina Gershon To Play Donatella Versace For Lifetime
Gina Gershon will play iconic fashion designer Donatella Versace in new Lifetime TV movie "House of Versace," according to The Hollywood Reporter. The telepic also stars Enrico Colantoni as Donatella's late brother Gianni Versace, Colm Feore as their older brother Santo, and Raquel Welch as their Aunt Lucia.

The original TV movie is scripted by Rama Stagner and directed by Sara Sugarman, and is based on the book "House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder, and Survival" by Deborah Ball. It focuses on Donatella Versace as she struggles under the scrutiny of being head designer at her brother's company following his death. The film will tackle her battle with drug addiction and the fashion house's failing fortunes, her stint in rehab and subsequent renewed sense of purpose, which built the brand into the lucrative and respected empire it is today.

"House of Versace" premieres Saturday, Oct. 5 at 8 p.
See full article at Huffington Post »

Win! Brilliant Brit-Movie ‘Vinyl’ On DVD!

Based on the story of Mike Peters’ true rock and roll hoax of 2004, Vinyl tells how a group of washed-up rockers hoodwinked top record labels, radio DJs, and the entire rock music world by releasing a pop punk single under a fictitious teenage band’s name…now they just need to teach this rowdy bunch of kids what true punk spirit is all about!

In Sara Sugarman’s Vinyl, much-loved British icons Phil Daniels and Keith Allen return to the big screen, supported by a sensational young cast, with charismatic newcomer Jamie Blackley delivering a standout performance that’s sure to mark him out as one to watch in 2013. Watch the old guard teach these young upstarts how to talk the talk and walk the walk before un-leashing them and their single upon the nation!

Like them on Facebook or follow the film on Twitter!

To win yourself 1 of 3 DVDs we have to giveaway,
See full article at The Hollywood News »

This week's new films

Beyond The Hills | The Incredible Burt Wonderstone | The Paperboy | Welcome To The Punch | Shell | The Spirit Of '45 | Red Dawn | Vinyl | Maniac | Michael H. Profession: Director

Beyond The Hills (12A)

(Cristian Mungiu, 2012, Rom) Cosmina Stratan, Cristina Flutur. 152 mins

Romanian patriarchy had a lot to answer for in Mungiu's 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days, and it's even more to blame in this powerful convent drama. It starts with a young woman coming to visit her former girlfriend, who's now a nun, but events increasingly spiral out of control, to the extent that romantic frustration is diagnosed as demonic possession… and duly treated.

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (15)

(Don Scardino, 2013, Us) Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, Jim Carrey. 100 mins

Doing for Vegas-style magic what Blades Of Glory did for figure skating, Carell and co conjure just enough comedy out of a sitting-duck premise, as their cheesy stage act is threatened by Carrey's Blaine-style endurance stunts.

The Paperboy (15)

(Lee Daniels,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

The HeyUGuys Interview: Sara Sugarman and Jamie Blackley talk Vinyl

For director Sara Sugarman, her latest project Vinyl was very much a going back to her roots job, as her first film since Confessions  of a Teenage Drama Queen not only takes her back to her hometown of Rhyl, Wales, but also to a story somewhat familiar to her. We were fortunate enough to sit down and discuss Vinyl with the filmmaker and one of her leading stars Jamie Blackley.

The pair discuss the intimate set and community feel, as well as working alongside the likes of Phil Daniels and Keith Allen. Blackley, who also starred in Snow White and the Huntsman, talks of his own experience on this feature, in a feel-good feature that certainly seems to have had as much of a jovial impact on the cast and crew as it will no doubt have on its audiences following its theatrical release this coming Friday March 15.

Our review
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Vinyl Review

Following on from director Sara Sugarman’s unsatisfying teen flick Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, the filmmaker has returned to her roots somewhat, this time staying closer to home –as she presents Vinyl, not only shot in her hometown of Rhyl, Wales, but also telling the true story of a punk band’s great rock and roll swindle; a band she knows all too well (she dated the bassist, innit).

Based on the real life occurrences surrounding Mike Peters’ band The Alarm, we focus on Weapons of Happiness, a punk four piece who had enjoyed relative success in their prime, yet split up due to the greed and careless irresponsibility of frontman Johnny Jones (Phil Daniels). However when they are reunited for the first time in years at a funeral, Johnny and the other band members (Keith Allen, Perry Benson, Christopher Roy Turner) take a trip down memory lane and,
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Film Review: 'Vinyl'

  • CineVue
★☆☆☆☆ It's certainly still early days, but the poorest British film of the year may just be about to rear its repugnant head (and we're not referring back to Danny Dyer farce Run for Your Wife). Sara Sugarman's Vinyl (2012) wants to be a breezy tale of old rockers sticking it to the 'man'. Sadly, it turns out to be a cliché-ridden bore, with a grasp on reality which makes Hollyoaks look like a restrained, Ramin Bahrani-like character study by comparison. The film is based on the true-life tale of Mike Peters (from 1980s outfit The Alarm) who assembled an imaginary Milli Vanilli-type band to get one over on the major record labels.

Read more »
See full article at CineVue »

Exclusive: First Trailer For Sara Sugarman’s Indie Movie ‘Vinyl’

In Sara Sugarman’s Vinyl, much-loved British icons Phil Daniels (Quadrophenia)and Keith Allen (Trainspotting) return to the big screen, supported by a sensational young cast, with charismatic newcomer Jamie Blackley (Snow White And The Huntsman) delivering a standout performance that’s sure to mark him out as one to watch in 2013. We originally launched this earlier this month, but I thought it deserved another share after picking up the news for Northern Irish Good Vibrations earlier today!

After a booze-fuelled jam session, Johnny Jones (Phil Daniels) and his old band-mates from the once revered The Weapons of Happiness come up with a gem of a pop punk single. The problem is that no one is interested in re-signing a bunch of aging rock stars. But Johnny’s not one to quit easily and has a plan.

Check out the trailer below, one that echoes the likes of The Commitments
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Exclusive: New Poster for Vinyl starring Phil Daniels, Keith Allen & Jamie Blackley

  • HeyUGuys
We’ve been sent the first look poster for new movie Vinyl which stars Phil Daniels, Keith Allen, Jamie Blackley and is directed by Sara Sugarman with a script from both Sugarman and Jim Cooper.

Based on the story of Mike Peters’ true rock and roll hoax of 2004, Vinyl tells how a group of washed-up rockers hoodwinked top record labels, radio DJs, and the entire rock music world by releasing a pop punk single under a fictitious teenage band’s name….…now they just need to teach this rowdy bunch of kids what true punk spirit is all about!

In Sara Sugarman’s Vinyl, much-loved British icons Phil Daniels (Quadrophenia) and Keith Allen (Trainspotting) return to the big screen, supported by a sensational young cast, with charismatic newcomer Jamie Blackley (Snow White and the Huntsman, London Boulevard) delivering a standout performance that’s sure to mark him out as one
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Sara Sugarman Vinyl to be produced by H2O, Traction Media

Welsh comedy Vinyl based on a 2004 rock 'n' roll swindle teams Vinyl, H20 H2O Motion Pictures and Traction Media are joining for the story about washed-up punk rockers who release a single under a fictitious moniker. Sara Sugarman directs from her own script, as well as producing alongside John H. Williams (Shrek). Phil Daniels and Perry Benson, Keith Allen and Jamie Blackley star in Vinyl. H2O and Traction H2O also banded together for David Weaver's thriller The Samaritan, which stars starring Samuel L. Jackson and Tom Wilkinson. Variety reports that there's select footage
See full article at Upcoming-Movies.com »

Sara Sugarman Vinyl to be produced by H2O, Traction Media

Welsh comedy Vinyl based on a 2004 rock 'n' roll swindle teams Vinyl, H20 H2O Motion Pictures and Traction Media are joining for the story about washed-up punk rockers who release a single under a fictitious moniker. Sara Sugarman directs from her own script, as well as producing alongside John H. Williams (Shrek). Phil Daniels and Perry Benson, Keith Allen and Jamie Blackley star in Vinyl. H2O and Traction H2O also banded together for David Weaver's thriller The Samaritan, which stars starring Samuel L. Jackson and Tom Wilkinson. Variety reports that there's select footage
See full article at Upcoming-Movies.com »

Netflix Nuggets: Russians Filming G.I. Joe Dolls Fighting Hercules for the Serpent’s Egg

Netflix has revolutionized the home movie experience for fans of film with its instant streaming technology. Netflix Nuggets is my way of spreading the word about independent, classic and foreign films made available by Netflix for instant streaming.

This Week’s New Instant Releases…

Promised Lands (1974)

Streaming Available: 04/19/2011

Cast: Documentary

Director: Susan Sontag

Synopsis: Set in Israel during the final days of the 1973 Yom Kippur War, this powerful documentary — initially barred by Israel authorities — from writer-director Susan Sontag examines divergent perceptions of the enduring Arab-Israeli clash. Weighing in on matters related to socialism, anti-Semitism, nation sovereignty and American materialism are The Last Jew writer Yoram Kaniuk and military physicist Yuval Ne’eman.

Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen (2009)

Streaming Available: 04/19/2011

Cast: Barbara Sukowa, Heino Ferch, Hannah Herzsprung, Gerald Alexander Held, Lena Stolze, Sunnyi Melles

Synopsis: Directed by longtime star of independent German cinema Margarethe von Trotta, this reverent
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Corpse Bride Co-Director Mike Johnson to Helm Oz Wars for Vanguard Films

John Williams, President and CEO of Vanguard Films has announced that Mike Johnson (Corpse Bride) will direct its new CG/stop-motion hybrid feature film, Oz Wars. The film was written by Rob Moreland (Space Chimps, City of Dragons) and Athena Gam (Alien Rock Band). Oz Wars transforms the Oz narrative into a contemporary, freaky action-packed PG-13 audience pleaser, with Dorothy caught up in a whirlwind of warrior witches, black magic, martial arts and monsters.

Check out the press release below for all the details.

Official Press Release:

Corpse Bride Co-director Mike Johnson At Helm Of Vanguard’S

Animated Film Oz Wars

(Los Angeles, CA; December 15, 2010) – John Williams, President and CEO of Vanguard Films, announced today the company has signed Oscar™ and Annie Award-nominee Mike Johnson, co-director of Corpse Bride, to direct its CG/stop-motion hybrid feature film, Oz Wars.

Mike Johnson is a spectacular director and one of the masters of stop-motion,
See full article at ScifiMafia »

‘Corpse Bride’ Co-Director Mike Johnson to Helm CG/Stop-Motion Hybrid ‘Oz Wars’

‘Corpse Bride’ Co-Director Mike Johnson to Helm CG/Stop-Motion Hybrid ‘Oz Wars’
Mike Johnson has signed on to direct the CG/Stop-Motion hybrid feature film Oz Wars. The Academy Award and Annie Award-nominee got his start as the Assistant Animation Rigger and Assistant Animator on The Nightmare Before Christmas. He was an animator on James and The Giant Peach, directed three episodes of the lat 1990's Fox clay animated television series The PJs, and was co-director of the 2005 film Corpse Bride. So basically, he has a long history with stop motion animation. Written by Rob Moreland (Space Chimps 1 & 2) and Athena Gam (Alien Rock Band), Oz Wars attempts to transform the Wizard of Oz narrative into "a contemporary, freaky action-packed PG-13 audience pleaser, with Dorothy caught up in a whirlwind of warrior witches, black magic, martial arts and monsters." It's being described as an animated film thats "not just for kids," as the world will be "dark, slick, sexy, and dangerous." Read the press release after the jump.
See full article at Slash Film »

Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen

Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen
Opens

Friday, Feb. 20


A young actress of impressive poise, personality and comic chops, Lindsay Lohan more than held her own with Jamie Lee Curtis in last year's "Freaky Friday" -- which makes the underwhelming "Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen" all the more of a letdown.

In the title role, Lohan gets to show off her song-and-dance talents, but mainly she models David C. Robinson's costume confections, the only consistently buoyant aspect of the film. Girls ages 6-14 will get a charge from the fashion show, animation effects and, to a lesser degree, the cartoonish antics. But like most adolescent histrionics, the pic's impact on adults will be limited to mild amusement alternating with annoyance. The cute factor isn't enough to stir up significant boxoffice returns for the Walt Disney Co.

Lohan plays a budding Sarah Bernhardt who tosses aside her given name, Mary, for the more fitting handle Lola. She can't believe the calamity she's forced to endure when her divorced bohemian mother (Glenne Headly) moves Lola and her young twin sisters from New York to the netherworld of suburban New Jersey. A self-described flamingo among pigeons, the despairing Lola crosses the bridge as though into oblivion. She promptly clashes with Burberry-clad Heather-in-training Carla (Megan Fox, savoring every villainous taunt), nabbing the lead in the school play and thus displacing the reigning drama queen.

Lola flirts with Sam (Eli Marienthal) and becomes fast friends with the borderline-dowdy Ella (Alison Pill, in a disappointing follow-up to her high-strung turn in "Pieces of April"), who lives in a stuffy gated community and dares not disturb the universe -- until Lola comes along.

Ella and Lola share a passion for the rock band Sidarthur, whose lyricist, Stu Wolff (Adam Garcia), Lola considers the greatest poet since Shakespeare. A cataclysm of cosmic proportions takes place -- the band breaks up -- and the girls are determined to attend their New York farewell concert, though they don't have tickets. As fate would have it, Carla will be attending not only the show but the afterparty at Stu's Soho loft, and she won't let Lola forget it.

An adaptation of the book by Dyan Sheldon, Gail Parent's first feature script in 17 years captures teen-girl hyperbole but lacks fizz and certainly doesn't earn its supposed emotional climaxes. Helmer Sara Sugarman, making her studio debut, struggles to tap a comic vein, never establishing momentum. Her 2001 "Very Annie Mary", set in her native Wales, was a comic grotesquerie with a grounding connection to character and place. Here, striving for whimsy, she throws in an assortment of bells and whistles, but for the most part the material is stubbornly inert, and the actors at times appear to be flailing.

Dance sequences choreographed by Marguerite Derricks, including numbers from the school production, provide bursts of energy and flair. As the shrill drama teacher overseeing the present-day musical version of "Pygmalion", Carol Kane delivers an unfortunate caricature, while Garcia earns a laugh or two as a cartoon version of a besotted rock star. Stephen H. Burum's lensing puts a high sheen on Leslie McDonald's brightly colored production design.

CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE DRAMA QUEEN

Buena Vista Pictures

Walt Disney Pictures

Credits:

Director: Sara Sugarman

Screenwriter: Gail Parent

Producers: Robert Shapiro, Jerry Leider

Director of photography: Stephen H. Burum

Production designer: Leslie McDonald

Music: Mark Mothersbaugh

Costume designer: David C. Robinson

Editor: Anita Brandt Burgoyne

Cast:

Lola: Lindsay Lohan

Stu: Adam Garcia

Karen: Glenne Headly

Ella: Alison Pill

Sam: Eli Marienthal

Miss Baggoli: Carol Kane

Carla: Megan Fox

Calum: Tom McCamus

Running time -- 89 minutes

MPAA rating: PG-13

Very Annie-Mary

Very Annie-Mary
There are moments of real pleasure to be found in Sara Sugarman's whimsical comedy "Very Annie-Mary" but not enough to sustain the film. The film will undoubtedly have a life on the festival circuit and will make a fine video release. But its theatrical life will be short.

"Annie-Mary" was shot in and around Pontycymer in the Garw valley in South Wales (where Sugarman shot two earlier short films), and the writer-director does a splendid job capturing the joys and eccentricities of this fanciful world.

The opening sequences set the tone of the film, showing -- as credits roll -- Annie-Mary's father (the excellent Jonathan Pryce) driving his baker's van through the valleys wearing a Pavarotti mask and belting out Puccini over the van's speakers.

He is known to all as "the Voice of the Valleys" and keeps Annie-Mary (Rachel Griffiths), a gawky but endearing oddball, very much in his shadow. When she was 16, she was offered the chance to study singing in Milan, Italy, but turned it down because her mother was dying. When her father suffers a stroke, Annie-Mary finally seizes the chance to rebel, dreaming of how she might sell the bakery and buy her dream house.

But when her father returns home in a wheelchair as demanding as ever, she realizes how dependent he is on her. She sets about repainting the house, ineptly running the bakery and even joining a motley all-girl pop group named Hinge, Minge, Twinge and Bracket. To the amazement of all, the group wins a top prize of

Hot 'Dates' brightens weekend boxoffice

Hot 'Dates' brightens weekend boxoffice
The boxoffice in North America was rather dismal this weekend with Sony's 50 First Dates providing one of the few respites as the romantic comedy held onto the top spot for the second consecutive session with an estimated $21 million. The Adam Sandler-Drew Barrymore starrer was down a relatively mild 47% compared with the first three days of the four-day Presidents Day holiday frame and has accumulated an impressive $72.3 million in just 10 days. But collectively, audiences met this weekend's four new wide releases with a big yawn -- not one cracked the $10 million mark. Buena Vista's Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen was the strongest performer of the weekend's new arrivals. The comedy, aimed at a young female audience, finished in the No. 2 spot with an estimated $9.2 million. Lindsay Lohan stars in the PG-rated film helmed by Sara Sugarman.
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