April 5, 1998
I would like to assure your readers to believe Mark Swed and not the headline of Swed's March 29 commentary "Newfangled Elgar." Anthony Payne, and not Robert Payne, is the contemporary English composer who should have received credit in the headline. It is the same Anthony Payne whom audiences and critics have encountered at Southwest Chamber Music concerts in 1997 and 1993. JEFF VON DER SCHMIDT Artistic Director Southwest Chamber Music Pasadena
June 16, 1991
As Lawrence Christon's commentary shows, the Asian-American side of the "Miss Saigon" controversy has become perhaps the greatest casualty of the anti-multiculturalist backlash. The protests against a Caucasian in the main role were intended to point out the discriminatory glass ceilings and double standards that virtually prohibit talented Asian actors from achieving lead roles in mainstream American entertainment. But the Asian actors' legitimate grievances continue to be misrepresented as censorial insistence or race-based casting.
November 19, 2006
I hate to sound like part of the appearance-is-everything crowd, but getting used to a blond-haired, blue-eyed James Bond will be like getting used to a blond Superman ["Here Comes Trouble, Nov. 12]. ROBERT PAYNE Studio City A Sunday Calendar cover story about Daniel Craig and the new Bond movie; a Business article about Daniel Craig, Sony and the new Bond movie ["Sony Shakes the Dice With 'Casino Royale,' " Nov. 10], helping the reader out by letting us know that it will be a huge Sony product-placement vehicle; and a big picture of Daniel Craig on the front of Nov. 5's Calendar.
March 26, 1995
I've just read that the upcoming movie "White Man's Burden" will depict a hypothetical world where whites are second-class citizens in a black-dominated America ("Turnabout of Foul Play," by Chris Willman, March 19). The film's makers hope that it will help white audiences empathize with what African Americans experience on a day-to-day basis. I hope the filmmakers are right and "White Man's Burden" will lead to more interracial understanding, but given the current backlash against minority empowerment, I'm not optimistic.
July 27, 1997
Thanks for your cover stories on Hong Kong cinema (June 15) and Chow Yun-Fat (July 13). I think that Hong Kong movies are the most intriguing and energetic in the world today, and I'm glad to see Calendar giving them the attention they deserve. The recent exodus of Hong Kong directors and stars to the West reminds me of Germany's Weimar filmmakers fleeing Hitler in the 1930s. I hope that Hong Kong's new Beijing-backed power brokers won't give the world any reason to extend the analogy any further.
October 18, 1992
Regarding the Oct. 4 Film Clip item on the casting of "The House of the Spirits," the movie version of Isabel Allende's Latin American novel: Clara del Valle Trueba, one of the female leads, is a Chilean woman, a Latina. But I couldn't help noticing that, of the 15 actresses considered for the part, all were white. Furthermore, the film's other lead Latino roles will also be played by white actors, Jeremy Irons and Glenn Close. Will the day ever come in Hollywood when a meaty, sought-after Caucasian lead role is being cast, and the first 15 actors considered for the part are all non-white?