CeeLo Green Cops A Plea In Ecstasy Case

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CeeLo Green just pled no contest in the case where a woman accused him of slipping her ecstasy … and the plea allows him to maintain his innocence.

TMZ broke the story … a woman claimed that she and the singer were at a downtown L.A. bar and the next thing she knew she was naked in his bed. The D.A. filed charges of furnishing ecstasy — a felony. CeeLo just pled no contest to sharing ecstasy … the difference being there is no underlying concession he slipped her anything. In other words, it was voluntary sharing.

As we previously reported … the woman was no stranger to CeeLo… they had been dating for months and he flew her out to L.A. and Vegas on several occasions to be with him. There were also witnesses in the bar who claimed she walked out looking fine.

The no contest plea is a felony … but the plea allows him to maintain his innocence. CeeLo must perform 360 hours of community service at the MusiCares Foundation of the Recording Academy and attend 52 AA meetings with a private therapist. He’s also on probation for 3 years.


Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan


Written by tmz.com


Michael Keaton’ ‘Birdman’ May Lead To OSCAR

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birdThe most coveted ticket at the 2014 Telluride Film Festival, so far, was easily one to Saturday night’s North American premiere of Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu‘s Birdman. The genre-defying pic arrived at the Werner Herzog Theatre after opening the Venice Film Festival days earlier — just like last year’s Gravity, from Inarritu’s Mexican compatriot Alfonso Cuaron — and the rave reviews that it received overseas (several labeled it a “masterpiece”) created a clamor to see it stateside. In the end, 650 lucky people got in, while hundreds more were turned away.

When the end-credits rolled, though, applause was warm but not massive, and debates between pundits immediately began about what, exactly, they had just seen. Some saw a profound critique about the decline of society’s interest in art and artists and concurrently growing obsession with celebrities and superheroes. Others felt the film was merely a visually beautiful pastiche of a lot of ideas and episodes without a discernable message or point. I suspect that this debate will continue throughout the Oscar season.

Subtitled …or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance, the film by Inarritu — who has previously attended Telluride with his films Babel (2006) and Biutiful (2010), plus several other times just for pleasure — does do one thing that everyone can agree about: It gives former A-lister Michael Keaton his best role in years. Moreover, the role has a built-in awards season narrative that the film’s distributor, Fox Searchlight, has already sold once before with The Wrestler‘s Mickey Rourke: The actor is, in a lot of ways ways, portraying himself and his own personal and professional failings in the film, which certainly takes a fair degree of courage that will evoke admiration on the part of the acting branch of the Academy and probably lead to a best actor Oscar nomination.

The soon-to-be-63-year-old, who became world-famous through Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992) before largely dropping off the map in recent years, plays Riggan Thompson, an actor who, around that same time period, starred as the title character in a blockbuster comic book franchise called Birdman. Birdman made Thompson a rich and famous movie star, but it also caused him to have an inflated sense of ego that led to the break-up of his marriage, a strained relationship with his child and the loss of any sense — certainly in the minds of others, and perhaps in his own mind, too — that he might actually be a creative artist. Now, as a balding and out-of-shape sexagenarian with money troubles and limited cinematic prospects (as well as the voice of Birdman constantly in his head), Thompson has decided to invest his own resources and energy in mounting a serious Broadway play. But will anyone take him seriously, or will it turn into a Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark-like debacle that will bury his career once and for all?

Keaton’s comeback is only one of several must-see elements of this film. Two others include the excellent supporting performances of its entire large ensemble, but especially Edward Norton (where has he been?!) as Thompson’s prick of a co-star and Emma Stone (who has been everywhere and was outstanding in this summer’s Magic in the Moonlight) as Thompson’s brooding daughter.

Also, this is yet another film that features remarkable work by cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezski (the winner of an Oscar earlier this year for his work on Gravity), who, in partnership with editors Douglas Crise and Stephen Mirrione, creates the impression that it was shot in one continuous and constantly moving shot. (Even though it wasn’t, very long stretches of it were, and the effect is quite remarkable.)

And, as for Inarritu, this is unlike anything that he has ever done before — and it certainly reaffirms that he is one of the most inventive and interesting filmmakers working today. Birdman features a number of wondrous and/or hilarious scenes and sequences that I won’t soon forget. (A particular favorite of mine involves an awkward walk through Times Square.) And if you like movies that offer behind-the-scenes stories about the movies (i.e. The Player) or backstage accounts of life on the stage (i.e. All About Eve), you’ll get a kick out of a lot of the references in this film. (Having just spent months of my life crisscrossing Broadway while covering the Tonys, I certainly did.) But that’s not to say that it won’t leave you a bit frustrated and trying to figure out what it’s really trying to say. Maybe that’s a good thing, maybe not.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by hollywoodreporter.com

Zach Galifianakis Is Heading Back To TV With Help From Louis C.K.

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zach1FX announced today that they’ve given a series order to a show co-created by Galifianakis, Louis C.K., and Jonathan Krisel (Portlandia, Saturday Night Live). Entitled Baskets, Galifianakis will play Chip Baskets, a man who dreams of becoming a professional clown, but after a failed attempt at attending a fancy Parisian clowning college, he takes the only clowning job he can find, working at a local rodeo. The ten-episode first season will air in 2016, which gives them plenty of time to figure out how to apply clown makeup to a beard.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by vulture.com

Syfy Cancels Wil Wheaton Talk Show

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Wil Wheaton smallSyfy will not continue on with its Wil Wheaton talk show. 

The weekly Wil Wheaton Project has been canceled after 12 episodes, the host annonced Friday. Syfy did not immediately return The Hollywood Reporter‘s request for comment.

“I’m really OK with it,” Wheaton recounted on his blog. “I’m super sad that I won’t get to work with my writers and producers, and I’m sad that we don’t get to keep writing jokes, but I did everything I could to help the show succeed. I promoted it the best way I could, I worked hard to write stuff that was funny, and I tried so, so, so hard to get the network executives in New York to understand how they could help the show succeed.”

Ultimately he said Syfy executives told him that the series did not have “enough viewers to justify more episodes” of the series.

Syfy announced the series in April for a May debut. The show featured Wheaton dissecting sci-fil film, TV, video games, viral videos and news of interest to the geek community. The half-hour series hailed from Pilgrim Studios, with Craig Piligian and Mike Nichols (Ghost Hunters) on board as exec producers.

The cancellation comes as Syfy has recommitted to going back to the more traditional sci-fi and fantasy genre that viewers had come to expect from the network.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by hollywoodreporter.com

Venice Film Review: Al Pacino – ‘The Humbling’

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Humbling5An actor prepares to face the final curtain of his career in “The Humbling,” director Barry Levinson’s free-form adaptation of Philip Roth’s penultimate novel, about a star of stage and screen beginning to lose the tricks of his trade (and possibly his grasp on reality). In one of those curious quirks of timing, Levinson’s film arrives hot on the heels of another polymorphous movie about an actor in crisis, Alejandro G. Inarritu’s “Birdman,” in whose deservedly large shadow it may be doomed to dwell. But where Inarritu’s exuberant style piece calls to mind the likes of Fosse and Fellini, “The Humbling” feels closer to the intimate theater/film hybrid works of Andre Gregory and Wallace Shawn (“My Dinner With Andre,” “Vanya on 42nd Street”) in its lo-fi aesthetics and gently playful sense of art imitating life imitating art. Fronted by a vibrant, deeply committed Al Pacino performance and very fine support from Greta Gerwig, this uneven but captivating film deserves to find its own audience, though doing so will surely prove to be an uphill climb.

Pacino, who seemed to have awakened from a long acting coma when he played Dr. Jack Kevorkian in Levinson’s 2010 HBO movie, “You Don’t Know Jack,” seems similarly rejuvenated here, in what’s easily his best bigscreen performance since Christopher Nolan’s “Insomnia” in 2002. When we first meet his 67-year-old Simon Axler, it’s backstage at a Broadway production of Shakespeare’s “As You Like It,” and Axler is getting into character as the philosophical traveler Jaques — a fascinating scene in which Pacino himself seems to be showing us how he gets into character, staring into the dressing room mirror and trying out variations on the celebrated “All the world’s a stage” speech, scrutinizing himself to see if his delivery has the ring of truth. “Do you believe that?” he asks himself. “Was that real for you?”

Indeed, all the world is a stage for Axler, who at one point asks a hospital nurse if she “believed” the moan of pain he just uttered, then tries it again. That’s shortly after Simon has swan-dived into the orchestra pit during a performance of the play, making him the hottest thing in the Broadway gossip columns since Julie Taymor’s “Spider-Man” and earning himself a 30-day stay  in a psychiatric hospital. He worries, he tells a group therapy session there, that he’s “lost track” of his craft, the way a musician might lose his ear for music, but even as he is supposedly baring his soul it’s clear that Simon is “on,” performing for an attentive crowd. That includes Sybil (Nina Arianda), the wife of a wealthy businessman who regales Simon with a lurid account of her husband’s sexual abuse of their young daughter. Simon was so compelling, she remembers, in a movie where he went crazy and killed all his neighbors, wouldn’t he think about doing her a favor and killing her husband for real?

And so it very much goes in “The Humbling,” in which there seems to be precious little difference between life in an asylum and the asylum of life. Thus Simon retreats to his sprawling Connecticut home (where he has never fully unpacked) and shuffles about in a semi-suicidal despair, until the sudden appearance of Pageen (Gerwig), the daughter of old actor friends, who tells Simon she harbored a massive crush on him in her youth and is now teaching at a nearby women’s college. Though Pageen claims to be a lesbian, with a trail of broken-hearted exes behind her, she rather quickly makes a play for Simon — a narrative device that seems even more far-fetched in Levinson’s film than it did in Roth’s novel (where the age difference between the characters was slightly less dramatic).

At this point, “The Humbling” might have tipped irretrievably into the realm of dirty-old-man fantasy (as many accused the novel of doing), but Levinson and Gerwig work a kind of magic on the character that makes her seem more than a misogynistic projection (unlike pretty much all the other female roles here). Pageen is an almost unplayable part pitched halfway between sex object and angel of death, in which Gerwig is required to turn on a dime from man-eating seductress to scolding shrew to insecure daddy’s girl and back again, but the actress hits all the notes with such brash confidence and sly humor that Pageen comes to seem very much the master of her own destiny. If Simon has, on some level, willed her into being, he’s the one who ends up seeming the puppet on her strings, and when Pacino and Gerwig share the screen, they have a special chemistry that comes from two gifted actors pushing each other beyond their respective comfort zones.

The rest of “The Humbling” doesn’t always rise to the same level. While the screenplay, credited to Buck Henry and Michael Zebede, has done much to curb some of the novel’s worst tendencies, the movie still devotes far too much time to the unstable Sybil and her continued efforts to implicate Simon in her husband’s murder, and on Pageen’s myriad exes (including Kyra Sedgwick as the dean of her college, and Billy Porter as a recent female-to-male gender reassignment patient), who have a habit of popping up on Simon’s estate like weeds in the garden. A device invented for the screen, of Simon appearing in periodic Skype conference with his hospital shrink (Dylan Baker), only serves to underline themes and ideas already well present in the film. But the movie rights itself once Simon is faced with two possible comebacks — a TV hair-replacement commercial, or “King Lear” on Broadway — and must reckon if he still has the actorly chops demanded by either.

As with Michael Keaton in “Birdman,” there’s the feeling that Pacino is playing close to the reality of his own topsy-turvy career here (which recently included a turn opposite Adam Sandler in the embarrassing “Jack and Jill,” a fate worse than hair-commercial hell). It’s a brave performance, not entirely lacking in its own vanity, but marked by moments in which Pacino lets go of the tics and mannerisms — the gravelly-voiced mumblings and hoo-wah! crescendos — that have been the crutches of his late career, and the great actor stands once more revealed.

Levinson decks out the cast with a wealth of ace character actors who make the most of their fleeting appearances, including Dan Hedaya and Dianne Wiest as Pageen’s understandably aggrieved parents, and a deliciously sardonic Charles Grodin, looking like the cat who ate the canary — along with the entire birdcage — as Simon’s long-suffering agent. Shot on a low budget and a 20-day shooting schedule, mostly in and around Levinson’s own Connecticut home, “The Humbling” maintains a professional sheen that belies its limited resources, aided by Adam Jandrup’s handsome but unfussy widescreen digital cinematography (with a nice attention to the change of seasons) and Sam Lisenco’s well-appointed production design.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by variety.com

Adrien Brody On ‘Houdini’

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brodyAdrien Brody is stepping into the chains and straitjacket for History Channel’s Houdini.

The actor, who idolized Harry Houdini as a boy, recently spoke with THR about the magician, his directing ambitions and the possibility of returning to the Predator franchise.

Houdini airs over two nights, beginning Labor Day at 9 p.m.

Why were you interested in playing Houdini?

He was a real childhood hero of mine. I used to dabble in magic as a boy and had dreams of becoming a magician. It’s pretty fascinating to portray someone who had such an influence on me at an early age before I even knew anything about acting. He has reinspired me to be even more disciplined with my work.

Did you learn things about him that you didn’t know before?

He ended up being a secret agent for the U.S. government. He had the perfect alibi because he had access, he spoke foreign languages and he had a fan base abroad, as well. Also, he overcame much more than the constraints of chains. He came from an impoverished background. He was a Jewish, Eastern European immigrant, so he overcame anti-Semitism. For somebody to excel on that level, to come from such humble roots, is beyond awe-inspiring.

You had to learn a lot of Houdini’s tricks. That must have been tough.

We didn’t have an extensive period of time. I was doing shows I’d just learned within a week or two that he had spent 10 years performing.

You launched your own production company, Fable House, in May. What does that mean for your career?

It’s a chance to help cultivate films I feel very suited for, that I can help guide in a way, that don’t necessarily come down the pipeline on their own. The development aspect is really exciting for me, not just to perform as an actor but to direct and help filmmakers I admire have an opportunity to have their projects come to fruition.

Shane Black is directing a new Predator film. Would you be tempted to return to that world after starring in the 2010 movie?

I loved playing Royce. That [original] film had a big place in my heart as a teenager. I campaigned for that role. When I first signed on, there was a lot of skepticism. Then, when I went to Comic-Con, there was such love from the greatest, most hard-core fans, who thanked me for lending credibility to it and for having a new take on things. That was something I was very grateful for.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by hollywoodreporter.com

Keira Knightley Goes Topless For Magazine

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keira-readPatrick Demarchelier was born outside of Paris in 1943, and any movie about his life would necessarily include the poignant scene of his stepfather giving the self-professed troublemaker an Eastman Kodak camera for his 17th birthday. After assisting the likes of Hans Feurer, the young Demarchelier struck out on his own, moved to New York, and developed his now signature, striking style of fashion photography. Destabilizing an elaborately staged fashion editorial or a portrait of Diana, Princess of Wales, for whom he was the official photographer, with a spark of spontaneity, Demarchelier creates a kind of verve, a frisson that has made him a legend, and his name a byword for fashion royalty—the very first thing Miranda Priestly wants to know of her hopeless new assistant in The Devil Wears Prada is “Did Demarchelier confirm?”

The Duchess (2008) star Keira Knightley knows a little something about onscreen royalty. In November she will appear alongside Benedict Cumberbatch in the WWII drama The Imitation Game, about the Enigma-code-breaking machine. Here, she tries to decode Demarchelier, getting the photographer to look at his life through the lens. Like the Devil‘s do-gooder assistant, she’s got Patrick.

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY: Hey, Patrick! How are you?

PATRICK DEMARCHELIER: Very good. I’m in Long Island on holiday. In a few days, I have a trip to Sweden. After that, I’m going back to New York for one day and then to St. Barts for a trip to work for a few days, then I’m finished.

KNIGHTLEY: Oh my God, you’re everywhere. Where are you going in Sweden?

DEMARCHELIER: We’re going to the north. It’s a hotel and spa. It’s on top of a tree.

KNIGHTLEY: On top of a tree? Is it the place where they have a box of mirrors, so you can’t see it? Have you been to this hotel before?

DEMARCHELIER: No, never. I’ve been to Sweden—my wife is Swedish—but this is a new place. How are you doing? Are you doing a movie now?

KNIGHTLEY: No, I’m not. What am I doing? I just bought a load of books that I’ll read over the summer and hopefully choose another film based on that. I don’t know if that’ll happen, but it’s quite a good way of working. Okay. I’m going to ask you questions. What’s your favorite picture that you’ve ever taken?

DEMARCHELIER: I don’t really think about that. For me, the new pictures are what I’m thinking about every day. The past is the past, no? Every day is a new challenge. Like for you, the movie that you’ll be in is a new challenge. Photography is just the shot—one day, two days—and the next day you’re gone.

KNIGHTLEY: Do you take pictures even when you’re not on shoots? Do you always have a camera with you?

DEMARCHELIER: Not too much, no. I don’t take the camera out with me. My eyes are the camera for me every day.

KNIGHTLEY: So does that mean if you’re walking around, you get inspiration, log it in your head, and maybe use it at some point?

DEMARCHELIER: Exactly. If you love it, it’s in your system.

KNIGHTLEY: What would be your ideal day, your dream day?

DEMARCHELIER: Every day is a dream, every day I spend with my wife.

KNIGHTLEY: Aw. Is it just fashion that you do?

DEMARCHELIER: No. I do fashion, portraits, nude. Sometimes animals, too. I love Africa. I love the wild. I love my dog. Actually, the best portrait I did was of my dog.

KNIGHTLEY: What sort of dog is it?

DEMARCHELIER: It’s a longhaired daschund. And it’s very funny, at a show in Paris, about six years ago—at the Petit Palais, the museum by the Champs-Élysées—there was a big show there, with a big picture of my dog, Puffy, like three meters high. [laughs]

KNIGHTLEY: What is your next show?

DEMARCHELIER: I’m doing a show in Tokyo, with Dior. I did a book for Dior haute couture three years ago, and I have a new book for them coming out in November. We’re doing a show in Tokyo with the pictures and the clothes mixed together.

KNIGHTLEY: How does it work, collaborating with a house like that? You have to keep the tradition but continue it moving forward, right?

DEMARCHELIER: They let me do what I want, basically. They give me the clothes and I do what I want. It’s a very interesting project.

KNIGHTLEY: You said something really interesting to me on the shoot: “You have to relax your face, because that’s what good movie acting is, a relaxed face. It’s the same thing as having pictures taken.”

DEMARCHELIER: The face is supposed to be relaxed. The more you relax …

KNIGHTLEY: You’re absolutely right. It’s very funny, because no photographer has ever said that to me before and made the kind of connection between the two things. You shoot digital, right? Do you still shoot on film as well?

DEMARCHELIER: Very rarely, only for special effect when I need it. Otherwise I don’t do film anymore.

KNIGHTLEY: I’ve noticed that the people who started on film still have the ability to see the person in front of them. Whereas for a lot of photographers who have only ever worked in digital, the relationship between the photographer and the person who they’re taking a picture of sort of doesn’t exist anymore. They’re looking at a computer screen as opposed to the person.

DEMARCHELIER: Exactly. I love digital, but the only problem is less intimacy. People look at the screen right away. Before, nobody saw the picture before you saw the final picture. There was more privacy in a way.

KNIGHTLEY: Does everybody then obsess about the image, suddenly trying to be perfect, as opposed to trying to capture a moment?

DEMARCHELIER: Yes. Now you work more like a team, with people who have good taste. It’s interesting. You can correct things, and if you don’t like an image right away, you can change it. Before you used to do a lot of pictures and pick a picture after. You can’t really compare; it’s a different way to work.

KNIGHTLEY: Would you ever go back to shooting on film, or do you think you’ve got to keep going forward?

DEMARCHELIER: Film is not very practical. The new world goes faster, and digital is very fast.

KNIGHTLEY: Do you miss any of the physicality of it? I think I’m a horrific kind of romantic about film. There’s something about that single shot that was one moment in time, and something about the physical process of the light hitting the lens and the dark room. I find it difficult to see the romance in digital.

DEMARCHELIER: It can do that too, actually. I do a Polaroid before shooting. A Polaroid you do one picture, three pictures, it’s really a moment. Capturing that moment with those pictures is interesting.

KNIGHTLEY: Your shoot the other day was probably the fastest photo shoot I’ve ever been on in my life, which was excellent. Have you always been really quick?

DEMARCHELIER: Ah. Things really go quickly with me. I like to do the pictures before people get too self-conscious. I like to be spontaneous and get a shot before the subject thinks too much about it. Sometimes it can be interesting to be very slow, so if you’re very, very slow, you get so bored that it’s interesting too. [laughs]

KNIGHTLEY: Who were the worst people to photograph?

DEMARCHELIER: Everybody can take a good picture. Everybody is interesting. Everyone has an interesting face. Some people are more difficult or more nervous or more tired. When you do a movie, you have action, you’re talking, you’re moving. You don’t see the camera. Taking a picture with a photographer, you don’t talk, it’s more difficult than in a movie for your body to relax, to be yourself.

KNIGHTLEY: Definitely. You’re looking for one moment that tells that story or whatever you’re trying to capture. Have you ever done film?

DEMARCHELIER: I do commercials sometimes. It’s funny because, for commercials, sometimes I work for a client and they say, “The model was not great.” In the moving image she was fine, but in the still photo it was difficult to get an image of her. It’s typical of doing a movie, because in the movie, you’re moving, you have personality, you don’t have to be great looking.

KNIGHTLEY: How did you come to your idea of beauty? Did you have idols when you were growing up, people whom you admired artistically?

DEMARCHELIER: Beauty is everywhere. And, no, my photography came naturally without any particular inspirations growing up.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by interviewmagazine.com


Dustin Diamond (Screech) Talks Regrets

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dustinThe rank of mega-stars who are known simply by one name includes, of course, Madonna, Cher, Beyonce and Bono. Oh, and one more, surely — that man-boy known as Screech.

Samuel “Screech” Powers of the 1990s TV show “Saved by the Bell” has become almost an icon — for gross ineptitude. He was adorkable before there was such a thing. He even had a catchphrase: “Zoinks!”

Dustin Diamond, the man behind Screech, is 37 now. His hair is cut close to his skull and he wears a beard, both flecked with gray. He’s married, works as a stand-up comedian, and lives near Milwaukee.

For Diamond, Screech has been a curse and a career. He played the character for a decade and then tried to run away from Bayside High as fast as he could: Diamond was a jerk in a season of “Celebrity Fit Club” that he said was scripted. He released a sex tape, which he said was faked. And he revealed sordid details in a tell-all book, “Behind the Bell,” which he said was embellished by a ghost writer.

Diamond is back this Labor Day weekend mining familiar territory: Lifetime TV is airing “The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story” on Monday, which Diamond executive produced. And he’s stepped into the off-Broadway “Bayside! The Musical!” playing — you guessed it — Dustin Diamond, a man who never left high school.

The Associated Press sat down with Diamond to discuss the show, his missteps and killing Screech.

AP: Your relationship to the show is sort of love-hate, isn’t it?

Diamond: Everybody of any magnitude that I can possibly think of has gone through love-hate relationships with something that becomes so big. The bigger it is, the more you go through it. Think of ‘Star Trek’ or any band — ‘Hey, play “Free Bird!'” Great song, I’m proud of the song but I’m sick of playing it. Give me some time away and, after there’s some space created, then you can come back and give big hugs to the thing that brought you there.

AP: You’ve tried to wriggle free with ‘Celebrity Fit Club,’ porn and the book. How did that go?

Diamond: That was really the one-two-three punch of being the bad boy, not the squeaky-clean Screech you remember, which, on one hand, helped because it did break that image. But in retrospect, I kind of wish I hadn’t gone exactly that route. But there’s no instruction book for any this. You don’t know what’s going to work. You have to take a gamble. I wanted to rattle the cage, but I didn’t think that it would rattle it so much.

AP: Why did that show seize the culture so powerfully?

Diamond: We never knew. I think looking back, the look and style of everything really sits well with nostalgic feelings of being young and being in school. The color palates that we chose, the outfits we were wearing, it kind of spoke to that generation.

AP: Have you kept in touch with some of your ‘Saved by the Bell’ co-stars like Mark-Paul Gosselaar or Tiffani Thiessen?

Diamond: They can’t say they really know me. The last time I saw Mark-Paul and Tiffany, I was 16. That was 21 years ago. That’s a hefty amount of time to traverse in growth. I’ve done a lot of stuff since I was 16. I made a lot of growth changes.

AP: What can we expect from the TV movie?

Diamond: The Lifetime movie is going to be based on my book in the way that it’s a behind-the-scenes look, but my book was written by a ghost writer, and they tried to milk the negativity. It wasn’t supposed to be a dirty tell-all.

AP: So the movie will set some of that right?

Diamond: Yes. The overall vibe, the overall feel, should be pretty surprising. I think people who are warm to the show are going to watch it and really enjoy it. And the people who are skeptical are going to watch it and say, ‘Wow, OK. This wasn’t what I thought it was going to be at all.’

AP: The musical has been rewritten to accommodate you. Are you having fun?

Diamond: Oh, yes. With parody, there’s new ground to be found. It’s not in the confines of ‘Hey, keep it serious. This is the real deal here.’ Now it’s poking fun at the real deal, so there’s a whole brand new well to dig around in. Now if I did this for the next 10 years, I might become sick of it, too.

AP: In both these projects, you’re exorcising demons by going to the very heart of Screech.

Diamond: Think of it like a wrestling match: You’d never leave the ring because then you’d lose the match. This thing is on top of you, trying to pin you down. And you’re wriggling and wriggling, flailing and tossing, to get this thing off of you. But when you do, you don’t walk away from it. You mount it, right? I’m mounting it.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by foxnews.com

‘She’s Funny That Way’: Venice Review

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Shes_Funny_That_Way_StillPeter Bogdanovich returns to screwball comedy and an intricate web of romantic complications with his first feature in more than a decade

More than any filmmaker who came out of the New Hollywood of the 1970s, Peter Bogdanovich has frequently genuflected to bygone silver screen traditions. She’s Funny That Way, the director’s first feature since The Cat’s Meow 13 years ago, marks a nostalgic return to the classic screwball comedy and light-hearted romance that he channeled in films from the smash What’s Up, Doc? to the underrated They All Laughed. But as gratifying as it would be to report that the effortless touch, the livewire rhythms and the sparkling wit remain in evidence, those qualities prevail only intermittently in this strained though mildly enjoyable ensemble comedy.

Bogdanovich makes no secret here of his admiration for the elegance and sophistication of Ernst Lubitsch, with a direct citation from the German émigré’s final completed film, 1946’s Cluny Brown. But that nod — about how most people derive pleasure from giving nuts to the squirrels while a select few get joy from feeding squirrels to the nuts — is symptomatic of this film’s problems. What was a charming throwaway in Lubitsch’s hands is hammered to diminishing returns here.

Originally titled Squirrels to the Nuts, the screenplay dates back 15 years. It was written by Bogdanovich with his then-wife Louise Stratten, whose older sister Dorothy had starred in They All Laughed right before her shocking murder.

Like that film, She’s Funny That Way is set in New York, but makes a far less transporting valentine to the city, seldom evincing any discernible feel for the locations. Disappointingly, the flat-looking new film could almost be set anywhere, despite the central plot element of a Broadway play that intersects with and imitates life. The connection to They All Laughed also surfaces in repeat references to Audrey Hepburn, who made her last substantial screen appearance in the 1981 release.

In addition to the uneven writing, much of the key casting is a little off. As the successful film and theater director Arnold Albertson, Owen Wilson recycles the same sleepily bemused shtick he turned on for Woody Allen, whose stale imprint is far more apparent here than that of Lubitsch. And as Isabella “Izzy” Patterson, the Brooklyn call girl who is one of many beneficiaries of Arnold’s “squirrels to the nuts” financial largesse, British actress Imogen Poots struggles to get out from behind the thick accent and create an appealing character.

In secondary roles, both Will Forte and Kathryn Hahn seem wrong for their characters — respectively sensitive playwright and acerbic actress wife. Rhys Ifans scores some funny lines and delivers them with dry aplomb, but he’s going to be few people’s idea of a seductive movie star.

In the part of an unprofessional shrink with a blithe disregard for doctor-patient privacy, let alone for keeping her own personal life separate, Jennifer Aniston is back in brittle Horrible Bosses mode. She has delightful moments but too often has to fight against patchy material.

In what plays like a surgical scripting afterthought, the story unfolds within the cumbersome framing device of a one-on-one interview during which Isabella, now one of Hollywood’s brightest stars, shares her story with a jaded entertainment reporter (Illeana Douglas). She recounts how while working for an escort service and dreaming of being discovered like Lana Turner, she met Arnold, who gave her $30,000 to stop turning tricks and pursue her acting career.

Over the course of the film, we see that hooker philanthropy is a serial hobby for Arnold, as gorgeous women keep turning up at inopportune moments to say how his monetary gifts and his belief in them turned their lives around. This is just far too shaky a central premise on which to hang a contemporary comedy, no matter how consciously it tips its hat to a more fanciful era of Hollywood storylines.

Things get complicated when Izzy shows up to audition for a call girl role in the play Arnold is directing, which stars Seth Gilbert (Ifans) alongside Arnold’s wife, Delta (Hahn), for whom the leading man carries a burning a torch. Playwright Joshua Fleet (Forte) is involved with bad-tempered therapist Jane (Aniston), who is treating both Izzy and a respected Judge (Austin Pendleton) so obsessed with the hooker/actress that he hires a private detective (George Morfogen) to tail her. That gumshoe also happens to be Joshua’s dad.

Such a tangle of characters and connections requires both dexterity and a supremely light touch, and particularly in the sluggish opening, those assets are missing. Chopping back and forth between the main story and Isabella’s interview only exacerbates the frustrating failure to build any consistent comic rhythm. The film does pick up, gaining momentum as the various deceptions are exposed. And there are a handful of very amusing scenes, notably one in which an Eastern European escort with minimal English skills (Lucy Punch) gets caught in the confusion. But this is a long, dispiriting distance from the sustained sparks and impeccably timed beats of, say, What’s Up, Doc?

An alumnus of that film’s cast, Pendleton, is one of many friends and associates on hand to lend support to a director whose history has earned him industry respect as well as a rooting interest. Wes Anderson and Noah Baumbach are executive producers; their involvement reportedly helped get the film made. Cybill Shepherd and Richard Lewis play Izzy’s parents; Colleen Camp drops in as Seth’s publicist; Tatum O’Neal, Jennifer Esposito, Graydon Carter, Jake Hoffman and even Michael Shannon make cameos. Joanna Lumley appears to have finished on the cutting room floor aside from a voicemail message and an end credits insert, while a major-name director swings by for a single joke that, like many, fails to land.

Removing expectations based on Bogdanovich’s own cherished career highs will probably allow many audiences to have an OK time here. But She’s Funny That Way just isn’t quite funny or inspired enough.

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by hollywoodreporter.com

Adam Brody Talks Married Life And Reminisces About ‘The O.C.’

Categories: Uncategorized

adam brodyAdam Brody seems to be enjoying married life with Leighton Meester.

The actor did an Ask Me Anything session with Reddit on Aug. 28 and answered a lot of personal questions, with a sense of humor. Adam talked about everything from marriage and Leighton, to The O.C. and his former girlfriend and co-star Rachel Bilson! Check out his answers below!

While participating in the AMA chat, Adam was asked all kinds of questions. One fan had to know, “How’s Leighton?” To which Adam replied, “She’s swell!” Another fan wanted to know, “Do you and Leighton split up the chores equally or does she carry more than her fair share? I.e. who does laundry, bro?” Adam answered, “I do some stuff but she definitely does the heavy lifting(figuratively). Literally, I do the heavy lifting.” Adam also discussed wanting 12 kids! We’d like to hear what Leighton thinks about that!

Adam also talked about his former show, The O.C., during the session. One fan asked, “Do you miss the OC? I miss the OC.” Adam replied, “I miss the original 90210, actually.” Another fan wanted to know if Adam kept in contact with the cast and Adam revealed, “I’m in constant psychic communication with all of them. And Ben and I also get lunch in this dimension sometimes.” Seth and Ryan, best friends forever!

Another fan wanted to know Adam’s thoughts on former co-star Chris Pratt‘s comments about the cast taking the show for granted. Adam replied, “I do not think we were guilty of taking it for granted. I also love Chris and he loves me so shut up!”

What about Cam Gigandet‘s comments that the cast was miserable during production? “I just think he had that effect on people. Kidding.” Lots of O.C. drama!

One fan also wanted to know what it was like kissing Rachel Bilson, who Adam used to date, plus he wanted to know if she was a good kisser! Adam’s response, “One of the all time greats!”

Presented by The Griper – E.Cowan

Written by celebuzz.com

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