The early ‘80s was an outstanding time for scary movies, and we have the video to prove it. In 1982, Universal publicity and marketing specialist Mick Garris was responsible for getting the word out on the studio’s horror and science fiction films. As part of that task, he produced and hosted Take One, a 25-minute roundtable discussion between horror masters David Cronenberg, John Carpenter and John Landis, all of whom were working on projects at Universal at the time. Though it was originally created for promotional purposes, the footage provides valuable insight on the filmmakers’ philosophies and approaches.
Coincidentally, the films they talk about – Landis’s An American Werewolf in London, Carpenter’s The Thing, and Cronenberg’s Videodrome – would become celebrated signature works for all three directors. As they answer a series of questions, their explanations are both a glimpse behind the scenes of some 30-year-old classics, and serve as a retrospect on cinema culture at that time. With our current dependence on CGI, listening to the energetic Landis and the more reserved Carpenter elaborate on their films’ practical special effects – some of which made possible by the legendary Rick Baker – shows how we take advantage of a once lengthy process.
They also shed light on how censorship affects their oft-targeted genres – though it could be because Take One was done under studio pretenses, they all seem fairly favorable of the MPAA ratings system. The Canadian Cronenberg even defended the “imperfect” system by pointing that in his native country, filmmakers risk jail time for screening film deemed unsuitable for audiences by the government. Regardless, the video is a treat for any horror fan, and Cronenberg’s hair looks fantastic. Watch below:
Few musicians are as inextricably linked to the film world as Nick Cave. Just this year we saw the latest writing effort from The Assassination of Jesse James composer with Lawless, another team-up with John Hillcoat after The Proposition and now Cave is set to release his 15th studio album with the Bad Seeds, titled Push the Sky Away. For the video from first single, We No Who U R, he’s connected with yet another major filmmaking talent, Gaspar Noe.
Although we haven’t seen a full-length feature film from the Irreversible director since Enter the Void, he’s been keeping busy with not only this video, but directing a segment in 7 Days in Havana, prepping his next potential project The Golden Suicides, as well as helping out Nicolas Winding Refn on Only God Forgives. Set entirely in the woods, check out the unsettling video below and thanks to Pitchfork for the heads up.
Push the Sky Away arrives in February.
If you’ve witnessed the beautiful first two features from Cary Fukunaga (Sin Nombre and Jane Eyre) then you know the NYU grad is one of our most promising young directors. While he’s deciding his next feature — perhaps a two-part adaptation of Stephen King‘s It – he’s kept busy with shorts and commercials and today we have his latest.
Commissioned by the fashion brand Maiyet, the filmmaker went to East Africa and followed Knight of Cups actress Haley Bennett and Zero Dark Thirty‘s Fares Fares for Sleepwalking in the Rift, part of a 30-minute series of short vignettes. While there’s little narrative to speak of, Fukunaga is able to evoke strong emotion in just this gorgeous portion, which can be seen below thanks to Nowness (via Cinema Blend).
Against the arresting backdrop of the East African bush, Haley Bennett portrays a young woman at a crossroads in life in this daring film by the critically acclaimed director Cary Fukunaga, commissioned by the distinguished fashion brand Maiyet. “We showed up in Africa with a one-line idea of what we were trying to do,” says the young auteur, whose cast and crew spent three days in Kenya. “It was really experimental in that sense.” Maiyet founders Kristy Caylor and ex-human rights lawyer Paul Van Zyl’s decision to shoot on location in Kenya falls in line with the company’s mission to cultivate business and craft in unexpected place, wherever there is genuine skill. The result plays with the conventions of movie advertising: this is a trailer with no feature attached. Instead, Fukunaga created a 30-minute series of short vignettes featuring the Maiyet Resort 2013 collection, to premiere in London this week. After receiving the directing award at the 2009 Sundance Festival with his debut feature, Sin Nombre, the 35-year-old American filmmaker took on the latest adaptation of Jane Eyre, starring Mia Wasikowska with Michael Fassbender. Set to a sweetly evocative score, this recent work sees actress and singer Bennett forge a tender connection with her ranger guide, played by Swedish actor Fares Fares, as they explore lush new environments. The intensive process of filming had its own immersive, cinematic moments. “On our first or second day there, a herd of giraffes started charging us,” recalls the director. “It was so beautiful that we filmed it until we realized we should probably get out of the road.”
Are you looking forward to Fukunaga’s next feature?
Discounting the 3D re-release of Finding Nemo, the best Pixar film of the year has arrived for your viewing pleasure. Before the disappointing Brave this summer, the studio attached their latest short, La Luna, and now the full work of art is online. Nominated for Best Animated Short Film at the Oscars this year, Enrico Casarosa‘s charming story follows three generations of men and their peculiar daily job. If you have yet to see it, I don’t want to ruin any of the experience, so check it out below for the work inspired by Hayao Miyazaki‘s anime style.
La Luna arrives with the Brave Blu-ray and is included in the upcoming Pixar Shorts Collection 2.
One can’t turn their head in the music scene without hearing Mumford & Sons pop up. The English folk rock group have parlayed their talents to the Hollywood arena with a song on Brave‘s OST this summer and were also featured in the concert documentary Big Easy Express, but now we’ve got two new projects from them.
First up, while he’s waiting (for many years) to hear if he’ll be the next James Bond, Idris Elba has used his time to not only co-direct (with Dan Cadan) a music video for the band, but also star in it. For their single Lover of the Light, one can see Elba waking up before gallivanting alongside some beautiful countryside. Along with that video, we’ve got a trailer (via FS) for their upcoming concert documentary The Road to Red Rocks, chronicling two shows at Colorado’s Red Rocks amphitheater during this year’s tour. Check out both videos below.
The Road To Red Rocks is released on January 22nd, 2013.
Ask most film fans and one would likely include at least some of Steven Spielberg’s filmography as part of their crucial, formative years in movie-watching. In the latest episode of 60 Minutes, they attempt to take on the reverse and see how the famous blockbuster director’s formative years have echoed throughout his career. While they touch on his upcoming Lincoln, most of the interview dissects the relationship (or lack thereof) with his father and the ripple effect in many of his films, from E.T. to War of the Worlds.
He goes on to talk about how action “doesn’t attract” him anymore, which I wonder what that means for his upcoming Robopocalypse. I also embedded a second video, including Daniel Day-Lewis, where he gives more details on Lincoln, including how they recorded the exact watch Lincoln wore, John Williams‘ score (which you can also hear a preview of below) and much more. Check out both videos below.
Lincoln hits theaters on November 9th.
In the ever-evolving world of film distribution, one may never know when, where or exactly how a feature will pop up. Today we have surprise, as Vice Magazine, who teamed with Grolsch Film Works, have released their omnibus drama The Fourth Dimension. Featuring short films from Harmony Korine, Alexey Fedorchenko and Jan Kwiecinski, the film premiered on the festival circuit earlier this year, but is now able to stream in full.
We were mixed on the project back when it premiered at Tribeca Film Festival in the spring, but we do reccomend at least checking out the first short in the bunch. After kicking off with some quotes (including a Back to the Future exchange), the initial short features Val Kilmer playing himself as a motivational speaker, before a “lack of cohesivenees” kicks in. Check it out below, with a hat tip to The Playlist for finding it.
After making a name for himselves in feature films like Step Brothers and the recent Bachelorette, as well as TV shows like Parks and Recreations and Eastbound & Down, comedic actor Adam Scott is taking the next step into producing. After dipping into that side of filmmaking with Party Down and his indie film Passenger Side, The Hollywood Reporter brings news of a newly formed company.
Along with his wife Naomi Scott, the duo have launched Gettin’ Rad Productions, and knowing Scott’s humor, it’s easy to see how they picked a name that he calls “stupid and aspirational.” And they are already off to a great start, optioning a novel for their first feature film.
They’ve set The Kitchen Sink‘s Oren Uziel to adapt the 2008 novel Downtown Owl, from author Chuck Klosterman, who recently popped up in LCD Soundsystem‘s Shut Up and Play the Hits. The novel follows three intertwined characters in a fictional North Dakota town and Scott describes it as ” lovely and moving and funny.” But before they get to the big screen, the Scott family have also served up a first, promising example of their work.
Their first project is a TV special for Adult Swim titled The Greatest Event in Television History. Airing last week on the Cartoon Network channel, it brings together some of Scott’s friends like Jon Hamm, Paul Rudd, Kathryn Hahn, Paul Scheer and even Survivor host Jeff Probst to re-create the opening sequence of the 1980s detective series Simon & Simon. With three more of these specials in this vein planned, check out the hilarious results below.
Did you like the special? What did you think of their first feature film?
With the first screenings kicking off this week at the New York Film Festival, we’ve got more from Lincoln arriving today. Recorded last night in New York City, Daniel Day-Lewis and Steven Spielberg sat down for a 42-minute conversation regarding the upcoming biopic. Much more in-depth than the previous Google Hangout chat, which launched the trailer, we are provided with a behind-the-scenes look through one of Hollywood’s greatest actors. The There Will Be Blood star runs through exactly why he chose to star in the film and much more, followed by some fan questions, including the much-talked about voice of Abraham Lincoln. Check out the full conversation below, along with a new still featuring our title character with David Strathairn.
Lincoln hits limited release on November 9th, before expanding on the 16th.
While films like the upcoming Looper present a highly fantasied form of time travel, I’ve always gotten a more palpable sense of that physically unattainable experience through actually watching early cinema. And today we’ve got news of a major breakthrough in film history, as the world’s earliest color film has been uncovered.
Found in an old tin for 110 years, the National Media Museum in Bradford, England discovered the footage, which was shot by Edward Raymond Turner. The London man unfortunately passed away from a heart attack just a year after shooting this at the age of 29. Captured in 1902 by a process he patented in March of 1899, this predates what was previously thought to be the oldest color footage in 1909. Check out the remarkable process of restoring the footage below in two clips, thanks to BBC (via Movies.com), as well as an extended rundown below.
Lee and Turner’s invention has always been regarded by film historians as a practical failure but it has now been ‘unlocked’ through digital technology, revealing the images produced by the process for the first time in over a hundred years.
Turner developed his complex three-colour process with support, first from Lee and then from the American film entrepreneur, Charles Urban. Using a camera and projector made by Brighton-based engineer Alfred Darling, Turner developed the process sufficiently to take various test films of colourful subjects such as a macaw, a goldfish in a bowl against a brightly striped background and his children playing with sunflowers, before his death in 1903 aged just 29. Urban went on to develop the process further with the pioneer film-maker George Albert Smith which resulted in the commercially successful Kinemacolor system, patented in 1906 and first exhibited to the public in 1909. Sadly, Turner’s widow never received a penny from her husband’s invention.
On discovering the film, Michael Harvey, Curator of Cinematography at the National Media Museum, worked with film archive experts Brian Pritchard and David Cleveland to reconstruct the moving footage in colour following the precise method laid out in Lee and Turner’s 1899 patent. They turned to experts at the BFI National Archive who were able to undertake the delicate work of transforming the film material into digital files, and so the team were able to watch these vivid colour moving pictures for the first time, over one hundred years since they had been made.
What do you make of this discovery?