October 27, 2000 |
There's poetry in all of us--not just the T.S. Eliots and Robert Frosts of this world, but people like 21-year-old Taylor Maxie Jr., a former gang member who said he's been shot seven times. Maxie said he discovered his flair for the written word while he was doing time for robbery and auto theft at Camp Fred Miller, the juvenile probation camp in Malibu. He was introduced to poetry three years ago by DreamYard L.A.
September 23, 2011 |
The new CBS drama "A Gifted Man" has more natural resources than two or three of most new dramas combined. Created by Susannah Grant ("The Soloist," "Erin Brockovich"), the show's cast includes Patrick Wilson ("Angels in America," "Little Children"), Jennifer Ehle ("The King's Speech," "Pride and Prejudice") and brand new Emmy winner Margo Martindale ("Justified"), and to top it all, the pilot is directed by Jonathan Demme. So why on Earth isn't it better? Surprisingly, earthliness, or in this case unearthliness, isn't the issue.
October 31, 2000 |
I'm probably going to lose a little money on "Charlie's Angels." But that's OK--the movie's been a bonanza for nearly every other writer in town. Sony Pictures, desperate for a hit, managed to spend $6 million on the script for the $92-million action comedy that opens Friday. The studio didn't give all the loot to just one lucky stiff; it spread the wealth.
March 17, 2000 |
Underqualified, underdressed and increasingly desperate, Erin Brockovich opens the film with her name on it pleading for a skilled job she can sense is not going to be hers. No, she says, she has no actual medical training, but she does have three kids. She's great with people, and a fast learner, too. And she's always been interested in science, to the point of once being "madly in love with geology." Doesn't all that count for anything?
March 31, 2001
Julia Roberts' performance at the Oscars was a poor example of manners. Her crass comments to Bill Conti, a highly regarded musician and conductor, were totally tasteless and uncalled for. She did not even know his name, and her "Sir" did not sound respectful in the least. Sorry, Julia, you're nowhere in my book!
November 13, 2010 |
Christina Aguilera isn't the first struggling pop diva to try to become a big-screen star. Sony Screen Gems isn't the first low-budget studio to gamble on a bigger-budget picture. And Steven Antin isn't the first filmmaker to get his big break from a romantic partner. But "Burlesque," a PG-13 musical opening Thanksgiving weekend, is freighted with all these elements, making it one of the riskiest and most unusual projects to come out of Hollywood this year. Antin wrote and directed the $55-million movie ?
April 3, 2008 |
As long as they keep releasing movies, I suppose they'll keep publishing books about them. Here's another one: David S. Cohen's "Screen Plays" -- whose subtitle promises to reveal "How 25 Scripts Made It to a Theater Near You -- For Better or Worse." Cohen had me at "How" but lost me soon after.
November 12, 2008 |
"The Duchess." "W." "Changeling." "Defiance." "Frost/Nixon." "Milk." "Valkyrie." "Che." What do these films have in common, other than succinct titles? All are based on real people and events, and all happen to have release dates timed to award season. Unknown or notorious, martyr or criminal, weak or powerful, when it comes to the Oscars, it pays to get real.
March 6, 2003 |
Being pampered isn't a male thing, maintains Beverly Hills screenwriter Alonzo Brown. And, growing up in New York City's Spanish Harlem, he learned that life was more about "responsibility" than treating himself well. Not until he attended an African American executives' entertainment summit at the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa five years ago, he says, did those perceptions irrevocably change.