Sunday, November 18, 2018

News Briefs

Displaying 41 - 50 of 3278
  • Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018
Naomi Kawase named to direct 2020 Tokyo Olympic documentary
Japanese film director Naomi Kawase speaks during a press conference in Tokyo, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018. Kawase was named to make the documentary film about Tokyo’s 2020 Olympics. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
TOKYO (AP) -- 

Japanese director Naomi Kawase, named Tuesday to make a documentary film about the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, said she hopes to focus on reconstruction efforts in the northern Fukushima region of the country.

The area was devastated in 2011 by an earthquake and tsunami and a resulting nuclear disaster. The Japanese government hopes the Olympics will show the region is recovering and that products made there are safe.

Some Olympic softball and baseball games will be played there to showcase the region.

"This will be an opportunity for me to show the world where Japan stands and what kind of changes Japan will be undergoing," Kawase said through an interpreter.

She said she also hoped to focus on volunteers at the Olympics.

"I think this really fits with the Japanese spirit of giving and contributing," she said.

Kawase is highly acclaimed and became the youngest director to receive the Camera d'Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival with her 1997 film "Suzaku."

Her best known recent films are "Sweet Bean" and "Still the Water."

The Tokyo documentary will be financed by the International Olympic Committee and the local organizing committee, and is a requirement under the hosting contract.

Toshiro Muto, the CEO of the Tokyo organizing committee, said the IOC owns the copyright to the film and "has the right to make key decisions in the creation of the film."

The documentary of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics by Kon Ichikawa, titled "Tokyo Olympiad," is generally regarded as one of the most important in the genre, along with Leni Riefenstahl's "Olympia" from the 1936 Berlin Games.

Ichikawa's film was controversial at the time and unsettled organizers who wanted a more traditional treatment of the Olympics rather than Ichikawa's more poetic view.

A Japanese reporter, posing a question to Kawase, described her typical film as "quiet and slow-flowing." He then asked how this approach suited something "fast moving" like the Olympics.

She said her style was unlikely to change, and then questioned assumptions about what an Olympic film should look like.

"When it comes to the Tokyo Olympics, we cannot just say it will be speedy just because it's a sports-related theme," she said.

In a statement, the IOC said Kawase will be only the fifth woman to direct the official Olympic film. She said she hoped to help make a path for women in Japan and for other female film makers.

"It's a fact I am a woman, so I will create from my own standpoint, from the perspective of a female," she said.

Kawase said she did not have a title for the film, which is likely to be finished in the spring of 2021.

"At this point I don't have any idea at all," she said. "But as usual I think this is something that will suddenly come to me."

  • Monday, Oct. 22, 2018
Gigliotti to produce, Weiss to direct and co-produce the Oscars
Donna Gigliotti (l) and Glenn Weiss
LOS ANGELES -- 

Oscar-winning producer Donna Gigliotti will produce the 91st Oscars, and Emmy-winning director Glenn Weiss will co-produce and direct the show.  

Gigliotti won a Best Picture Oscar for “Shakespeare in Love” and earned nominations for “Hidden Figures,” “Silver Linings Playbook” and “The Reader.”  Her other producing credits include such features as “The Fundamentals of Caring,” “Beasts of No Nation,” “Two Lovers,” “The Good Night” and “Emma.”  The films she has produced and overseen have earned a total of 43 Oscar nominations. 

Returning to direct his fourth consecutive Oscars, Weiss has won 14 Primetime Emmy Awards, including one earlier this year for the 90th Oscars.  He has directed and produced numerous televised events, including 18 Tony Awards® shows.  His other directing credits include “The Kennedy Center Honors,” “Billboard Music Awards,” “BET Awards,” “Peter Pan Live!,” “Dick Clark’s Primetime New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest,” “Primetime Emmy Awards,” “Live from Lincoln Center,” “Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular,” “Garth Brooks, Live from Las Vegas” and the “American Music Awards.”

The 91st Oscars will be held on Sunday, February 24, 2019, at the Dolby® Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center® in Hollywood, and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network. The Oscars also will be televised live in more than 225 countries and territories worldwide.

  • Monday, Oct. 22, 2018
"Wonder Woman" sequel pushed back to summer 2020
This image released by Warner Bros. Entertainment shows Gal Gadot in a scene from "Wonder Woman." Warner Bros. announced Monday that “Wonder Woman 1984” will now open on June 5, 2020. The film starring Gal Gadot as the Amazonian superhero had been slated for a November 2019 release. (Clay Enos/Warner Bros. Entertainment via AP)
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

The world will have to wait a little longer for the "Wonder Woman" sequel, which will now arrive in theaters in summer 2020.

Warner Bros. announced Monday that "Wonder Woman 1984" will now open on June 5, 2020. The film starring Gal Gadot as the Amazonian superhero had been slated for a November 2019 release.

Patty Jenkins is returning as director and has teased fans with tidbits about the series' time jump to the 1980s.

The first "Wonder Woman" was a major blockbuster for Warner Bros.' DC Comics franchise. The film earned more than $800 million globally. The original became the most successful live-action film directed by a woman.

The sequel would have been released a month after the "Joker" which is scheduled to open on Oct. 4, 2019.

  • Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018
Marvel universe a slice smaller with "Luke Cage" cancellation
In this June 21, 2018 file photo, Mike Colter attends the premiere of the Netflix original series Marvel's "Luke Cage" season two at The Edison Ballroom in New York. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File )
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

The Marvel universe just got a slice smaller on Netflix with the cancellation of "Marvel's Luke Cage" after two seasons.

The news Friday surprised fans and came a few weeks after Netflix axed another live-action Marvel series, "Iron Fist." Both are part of The Defenders world.

Netflix didn't explain the Cage cancellation in a joint statement with Marvel. They thanked creators, cast and crew — and fans of the Harlem Hero. An email request for additional comment from Netflix was not immediately returned Saturday.

The Cage series made a splash when it was released because it featured a rare black superhero in a standalone vehicle. Mike Colter starred as the bullet-proof hero for hire. The second season dropped in June.

  • Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018
Amy Schumer: In support of Kaepernick, no Super Bowl ads
In this April 17, 2018 file photo, Amy Schumer arrives at the world premiere of "I Feel Pretty" at the Westwood Village Theater in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

Amy Schumer says don't look for her in a Super Bowl commercial this time around. She's sitting this one out in support of Colin Kaepernick and his take-a-knee protest against racism.

The comedian and actress explained her stance at length Friday on Instagram, challenging white NFL players to kneel as well. Addressing them directly, she wrote: "Otherwise how are you not complicit?"

Schumer says she told her team she wouldn't appear in any ads for the big game. She says she realizes that "must sound like a privilege ass sacrifice but it's all I got."

Diddy, Jessica Seinfeld and Christie Brinkley offered support in comments.

In 2016, Schumer appeared with Seth Rogen in a political-themed campaign for Bud Light, "Raise One to Right Now," during Super Bowl 50.

  • Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018
Stun Expands Consumer Brands Team, Promotes Matt LeBoeuf
Matt LeBoeuf
LOS ANGELES -- 

Stun, an award-winning content studio and commercial production company under the aegis of co-founders Mark Feldstein and Brad Roth, has expanded its Consumer Brands Team, and concurrently has promoted Matt LeBoeuf to the newly created position of VP, Consumer Brands.

In his previous role at Stun as sr. account director, LeBoeuf had led Stun’s efforts in driving robust relationships with such brands as NFL (NFL Media) and Princess Cruises. He is also working with other brands including Hollywood Park--new home of the LA Rams and the LA Chargers. In his new post, LeBoeuf will help drive awareness and market penetration by implementing the brands’ vision across AV, digital, print, social, and experiential media platforms. 

In a joint statement, Feldstein and Roth shared, “We have been extremely fortunate to have developed fantastic relationships with the marketing teams at some of the most successful consumer brands in the world. Matt’s new role reflects Stun’s continuing evolution from primarily an entertainment industry focused agency to one with a much more diverse client portfolio. As we strengthen our Consumer Brands Team, and with the promotion of Matt, we continue to grow Stun’s footprint by seeking additional brand clients who can benefit from our expertise, especially our background in entertainment and content creation.”

LeBoeuf added, “Beyond bringing new accounts into the fold, we continue to work closely with our existing brand clients by developing truly collaborative relationships, and expanding our role with them as a trusted partner.”

Prior to joining Stun, LeBoeuf served from 2008-2013 as sr. producer/head of production with Big Machine Design, a full service production and design firm. There, he oversaw more than 500 projects including commercials, on-air promotions, show packages, experiential marketing, visual effects, live action shoots, branded content and trailers. His major clients at the time included Disney, Ubisoft, Geico, Bravo, the History Channel and Discovery. 

As producer, On-Air Creative Services, for DIRECTV (2007-2008), LeBoeuf oversaw the Fall 2007 brand package evolution of DIRECTV, including a new brand logo and brand package. Earlier posts held by LeBoeuf during his career include serving as a producer with both Transistor Studios and Lambo/SubGiant, and as a coordinator within the marketing department at Arnson Communications.

  • Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018
MoviePass operations under investigation by NY AG
This Aug. 23, 2018, file photo shows Movie Pass debit cards and used movie tickets in New York. The company that runs the beleaguered MoviePass, a discount service for movie tickets at theaters, is being investigated by the New York Attorney General on allegations it misled investors. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
NEW YORK (AP) -- 

The company that runs the beleaguered MoviePass discount service for theater tickets is being investigated by the New York Attorney General on allegations that it misled investors.

Parent company Helios and Matheson of New York said in a prepared statement that it is aware of the investigation, but that it believes, "our public disclosures have been complete, timely and truthful and we have not misled investors."

The investigation was first reported by CNBC.

The company has struggled financially and is facing class action lawsuits filed on behalf of investors claiming the company failed to disclose aspects of a business model that were unsustainable.

Shares of Helios and Matheson, which is in danger of being delisted by Nasdaq because they had fallen to about a penny, plunged at the opening bell.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018
"Orange Is the New Black" to wrap after next year's season 7
In this Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017 file photo, Nick Sandow, from left, Elizabeth Rodriguez, Selenis Leyva, Diane Guerrero, Jackie Cruz, Lori Petty and Yael Stone pose in the press room with the award for outstanding performance by an ensemble in a comedy series for "Orange Is The New Black" at the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

"Orange Is the New Black" is fading to black after its upcoming seventh season.

Cast members posted a video Wednesday announcing the series' 2019 end, which was confirmed by a Netflix spokeswoman.

In the video, the actresses thanked fans for their support and promised a fulfilling wrap-up to the comedy-drama set in a women's prison.

Actress Kate Mulgrew said she'll miss being with a "groundbreaking" TV series.

"Orange Is the New Black" was inspired by Piper Kerman's memoir about her time in federal prison.

The show was nominated twice for top-series Emmy honors, and Uzo Aduba won two acting trophies. The series was an early hit for Netflix when the streaming service began showing original programming.

The last season's 2019 release date for "Orange Is the New Black" wasn't announced.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018
Prosecutors disclose more misconduct by Weinstein detective
In this Oct. 11, 2018 file photo, Harvey Weinstein enters State Supreme Court in New York. New York prosecutors say the former lead police detective in Weinstein's sexual assault investigation urged one of his accusers to delete information from her phone before turning it over to prosecutors. The Manhattan District Attorney’s office detailed the alleged misconduct in a letter to Weinstein’s lawyer that was made public Wednesday, Oct. 17. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)
NEW YORK (AP) -- 

New York prosecutors say the former lead police detective in the Harvey Weinstein sexual assault investigation urged one of his accusers to delete information from her phone before turning it over to prosecutors.

The Manhattan district attorney's office detailed the alleged misconduct in a letter to Weinstein's lawyer that was made public Wednesday.

The new allegations against Detective Nicholas DiGaudio involve an unidentified woman who says Weinstein raped her in his Manhattan hotel room in 2013.

Prosecutors say the woman didn't delete any information, which was personal and unrelated to the investigation.

DiGaudio was removed from the Weinstein case last week after evidence surfaced that he instructed a witness to keep quiet when she raised doubts about another accuser's claim of sexual misconduct. There was no immediate response from DiGaudio's union.

That revelation led prosecutors to drop a charge related to that allegation.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018
MeToo, Kavanaugh topics of talk at women filmmakers' event
Samira Wiley, left, and Uzo Aduba attend the Through Her Lens: The Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Program Luncheon at Locanda Verde on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018, in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)
NEW YORK (AP) -- 

The midterm elections, #MeToo, and the recent confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court: All were key topics of discussion at an annual gathering for women filmmakers Tuesday in Manhattan.

"Nevertheless, we persisted," intoned Jane Rosenthal, executive chair of Tribeca Enterprises, using the popular feminist slogan over and over as she discussed a year of women's struggles, both inside and outside Hollywood.

The gathering took place almost exactly a year after the #MeToo movement erupted into public consciousness, following stunning allegations of sexual misconduct against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

"Last year when we met we experienced a watershed moment," Rosenthal told attendees at the luncheon for "Through Her Lens: the Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Program ," which provides mentorship and funding for emerging women filmmakers. "Brave women were coming forward to demand societal change. And the world was listening — or so we thought."

Rosenthal called the recent Kavanaugh hearings "devastating" for women.

"It's hard to fight for equality in the workplace or the arts when we haven't achieved equality in the eyes of the government," she said. "We will, we must persist."

Kavanaugh took his seat on the high court last week after overcoming allegations of sexual misconduct, which he denied, by accuser Christine Blasey Ford.

Rosenthal also referred to efforts to achieve greater representation of women in Hollywood, especially behind the camera, where women still lag far behind men. Only one woman has ever won an Oscar for directing — Kathryn Bigelow, who is serving as a one of the mentors for the Tribeca program.

"We're not waiting for the rest of the world to catch up with us," Rosenthal said. "We're leading."

Actress Katie Holmes spoke of the importance of women mentoring and supporting others, and said she was sensing a shift for the better in Hollywood.

"I've seen a lot of captains of our industry really leading by example and supporting other women and that's what today is all about," she said in an interview. "What we need to do, forever, is continue to support each other, to inspire the new group of filmmakers, and to be protective of each other."

Holmes, now working on her second film as a director — an adaptation of the historical novel "Rare Objects" — said it was important to her to work with fellow women.

"I feel very creative around other women and I feel very understood," she said. She said a 2014 movie she starred in, written and directed by Karen Hopkins, was an especially rewarding experience.

"I loved her vision and I loved the character that she created," Holmes said. "And there was a wonderful energy on set."

Another actress in attendance, Piper Perabo, was wearing a T-shirt saying, "Believe Women." Last month, she was arrested for civil disobedience for protesting at Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing.

Perabo said she was not discouraged by what some have seen as setbacks for the movement, with Kavanaugh's confirmation and also the dropping of a charge against Weinstein in a New York court.

"It's never been easy," she said. "And the fact that even a setback in the Weinstein case makes headlines shows that people are talking about it and it's important to people, and people are going to discuss it and it's news."

"There are going to be steps forward and steps back, but that doesn't mean you give up," she said.

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