Terrence Frederick Malick (born November 30, 1943) is an American film director, screenwriter, and producer. In a career spanning over four decades, Malick has received consistent regard for his work, having to date directed only six feature films: Badlands (1973), Days of Heaven (1978), The Thin Red Line (1998), The New World (2005), The Tree of Life (2011), and the forthcoming To the Wonder (2012).
Malick was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Director for The Thin Red Line and The Tree of Life and Best Adapted Screenplay for The Thin Red Line, as well as winning the Golden Bear at the 49th Berlin International Film Festival for The Thin Red Lineand the Palme d’Or at the 64th Cannes Film Festival for The Tree of Life.
Notoriously private, details about Malick are difficult to come by, his birthplace could be either Ottawa, Illinois or Waco, Texas, depending on which information you choose to believe. He is the son of Irene and Emil A. Malick, a geologist. Malick had two younger brothers: Chris and Larry. Larry Malick was a guitarist who went to study in Spain with the legendary Segovia in the late 1960’s. In 1968, it is alleged that Larry intentionally broke his own hands due to pressure over his musical studies. Emil went to Spain to help Larry, but Larry died shortly after, apparently committing suicide. Themes revisited by Malick in 2011.
Malick studied philosophy at Harvard University, graduating in 1965. He went on to Magdalen College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar but left without earning a doctorate. Upon returning to the United States, Malick taught philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology while freelancing as a journalist for Life, Newsweek and The New Yorker.
Malick’s start in film began after earning an Master of Fine Arts from the AFI Conservatory in 1969, writing and directing the short film Lanton Mills. At the AFI, he established contacts with longtime collaborator Jack Fisk, and agent Mike Medavoy, who procured for Malick freelance work revising scripts.
After one of his screenplays, Deadhead Miles, was made into what Paramount Pictures felt to be an unreleasable film, Malick decided to direct his own scripts. His first directorial work was the superlative Badlands (1973), an independent film starring Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek as a young couple on a crime spree in the 1950’s. After a troubled production, Badlands drew raves at its premiere at the New York Film Festival, leading to Warner Bros. Pictures buying distribution rights for three times its budget.
Paramount Pictures produced Malick’s second film, Days of Heaven (1978), about a love triangle that develops in the farm country of the Texas Panhandle in the early 20th century. The film spent two years in post-production, during which Malick and his crew experimented with unconventional editing and voice-over techniques. Days of Heaven went on to win the Academy Award for Best Cinematography, as well as the prize for Best Director at the 1979 Cannes Film Festival.
Following the release of Days of Heaven, Malick began developing a project for Paramount, titled Q, that explored the origins of life on earth. During pre-production, he suddenly moved to Paris and disappeared from public view. During this time, he wrote a number of screenplays, including The English Speaker; adaptations of Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer and Larry McMurtry’s The Desert Rose; a script about Jerry Lee Lewis; and continued work on the Q script. Malick’s work on Q eventually became the basis for his 2011 film The Tree of Life.
Twenty years after Days of Heaven, Malick returned to film directing in 1998 with The Thin Red Line (1998), a loose adaptation of the James Jones World War II novel of the same name, for which he gathered a large ensemble of famous stars. The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards and received critical acclaim.
After learning of Malick’s work on an article about Che Guevara during the 1960’s, Steven Soderbergh offered Malick the chance to write and direct a film about Guevara that he had been developing with Benicio del Toro. Malick accepted and produced a screenplay focused on Guevara’s failed revolution in Bolivia. After a year and a half, the financing had not come together entirely, and Malick was given the opportunity to direct The New World, another script he had begun developing in the 1970’s. Consequently, he left the Guevara project and Soderbergh went on to direct Che Parts 1 and 2.
The New World, which featured a romantic interpretation of the story of John Smith and Pocahontas, was released in 2005. Over one million feet of film was shot for the film, and three different cuts of varying length were released. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Cinematography, but received generally mixed reviews during its theatrical run, though it has since been hailed as one of the best films of the decade.
Malick’s fifth feature, The Tree of Life, was filmed in Smithville, Texas, and elsewhere during 2008. Starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, it is a family drama spanning multiple time periods and focuses on an individual’s reconciling love, mercy and beauty with the existence of sickness, suffering and death. It premiered at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival where it won the coveted Palme d’Or.
Malick’s sixth feature, titled To the Wonder, premiered at the 2012 Venice Film Festival where it garnered mixed reviews.
Malick’s next two projects are Lawless and Knight of Cups. Lawless stars Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara. Knight of Cups will star Bale, and will also feature Blanchett. The films are being shot back-to-back. In early 2012, the title “Lawless” was given to The Weinstein Company’s The Wettest County, leaving Malick’s Lawless untitled.
DEADLINE NEWS: Charlize Theron will star in an adaptation of Park Chan-wook’s Sympathy For Lady Vengeance, the last in Park’s revenge trilogy. The original 2005 film centered on a woman who for reasons of her own completes a prison term for a murder she did not commit, re-emerging to punish the killer and avenge the dead. “This will be very American — and very unexpected,” said scriptwriter William Monahan in the release announcing the deal. “Park is a genius; it’s the Everest of adaptations and I’ve got blood in my teeth to do it.”
Monahan, recently completed the screenplay for The Gambler for Martin Scorsese at Paramount and Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City: A Dame To Kill For.
One of the most terrifying and tremendous thrillers of the 1990’s, Rob Reiner’s film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Stephen King, an ode to psychotic fans everywhere, MISERY, has always seemed somehow destined for the physical confines and emotional excesses of the stage. Now, thanks to two-time Academy Award-winning screenwriter William Goldman, the man responsible for the original film’s screenplay as well as many films, books, plays and musicals of his own, along with director Will Frears, the nightmare is coming to the stage at the Bucks County Playhouse for a special limited engagement November 24 through December 8.
Read an in depth interview with William Goldman and Will Frears by Pat Cerasaro at BroadwayWorld.com HERE
Edward Allen “Ed” Harris (born November 28, 1950) is an American actor, writer, and director, known for his performances in Pollock, Appaloosa, The Rock, The Abyss, A Beautiful Mind, A History of Violence, Enemy at the Gates, The Right Stuff, State of Grace, Glengarry Glen Ross, Alamo Bay, Gone Baby Gone, The Hours, and also genre classics such as Coma, Creepshow, and The Stand. He is a three-time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performances in Apollo 13, The Truman Show and The Hours, along with a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Actor for the title role in Pollock.
Harris was born in Englewood Hospital, in Englewood, New Jersey, and raised in Tenafly, the son of Margaret, a travel agent, and Robert L. Harris, who worked at the bookstore of the Art Institute of Chicago. He graduated from Tenafly High School in 1969, where he played on the football team, serving as the team’s captain in his senior year. He was a star athlete in high school, and competed in athletics at Columbia University in 1969. He enrolled at the University of Oklahoma to study drama, and after several successful roles in the local theater, he moved to Los Angeles, and enrolled at the California Institute of the Arts where he spent two years, and graduated with a BFA.
Harris’s wife is actress Amy Madigan, the couple married on 21 November 1983, while they were filming Places of the Heart in which they played an adulterous couple. They have a daughter, Lily Dolores Harris, born in 1993.
Harris’s first important film role was in Borderline with Charles Bronson. After roles in TV series Lou Grant and CHiPs, he had a small role in the Stephen King scripted George A. Romero directed Creepshow (1982). Then in 1983, Harris became well known, playing astronaut John Glenn in The Right Stuff. Twelve years later, a film with a similar theme led to Harris being nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his portrayal of NASA flight director Gene Kranz in Apollo 13 (1995).
His more notable performances came in the excellent Alamo Bay (1985), Jackknife (1989), The Abyss (1989), State of Grace (1990), Glengarry Glen Ross (1992), and a further two Stephen King adaptations in Needful Things (1993) and the TV movie The Stand (1994). He was excellent in The Truman Show (1998) before making his cinema directing debut in 2000, with Pollock (2000) in which he starred as the acclaimed American artist Jackson Pollock.
He has also portrayed such diverse real-life characters as William Walker, a 19th Century American who appointed himself president of Nicaragua, in the film Walker (1987), Watergate figure E. Howard Hunt in the Oliver Stone biopic Nixon (1995), composer Ludwig van Beethoven in the film Copying Beethoven (2006) and more recently as Senator John McCain in HBO’s made-for-television drama Game Change (2012).
Harris also portrayed a German Army sniper, Major Erwin König, in Enemy at the Gates (2001). He appeared as a vengeful mobster in David Cronenberg’s A History of Violence (2005) and as a police officer alongside Casey Affleck and Morgan Freeman, in Gone, Baby, Gone (2007), directed by Ben Affleck.
Harris has directed a number of theater productions as well as having an active stage acting career. Most notably, he starred in the production of Neil LaBute’s one-man play Wrecks at the Public Theater in New York City and later at the Geffen Theater in Los Angeles. For the LA production, he won the LA Drama Critics Circle Award. Wrecks premiered at the Everyman Theater in Cork, Ireland and then in the US at the Public Theater in New York.
Harris, busy as ever has voiced the game Call of Duty: Black Ops, and currently has 6 projects in post-production including the post-apocalyptic Snowpiercer.
Stanley A. Long (26 November 1933 – 10 September 2012) was a British Exploitation cinema and sexploitation filmmaker. He was a writer, cinematographer, editor, and eventually, producer/director of low-budget exploitation movies.
Long began his career as a photographer, before producing striptease shorts or “glamour home movies”, as they were sometimes known, for the 8 mm market. Beginning in the late fifties, Long’s feature film career would span the entire history of the British sex film, and as such exemplifies its differing trends and attitudes. From coy nudist films (Nudist Memories, 1959), to moralizing documentary (The Wife Swappers, 1969) to a more relaxed attitude to permissive material (Naughty, 1971), to out and out comedies at the end of the 1970’s.
He made several sex comedy movies in the 1970s, the most successful being Adventures of a Taxi Driver (1975), Adventures of a Private Eye (1977) and Adventures of a Plumber’s Mate (1978), starring a host of comedy performers including, Diana Dors, Irene Handl and Harry H. Corbett.
Long also made horror films. He made the anthology movie Screamtime in 1983 and was due to film a Jo Gannon script entitled Plasmid, about albino mutants living in London’s Underground. While the film was never made, confusingly a tie-in novel of Plasmid was released.
Long was also the cameraman on several British horror movies of the 1960s including The Blood Beast Terror, a 1967 horror film released by Tigon in February 1968. In the United States it was released by Pacemaker Pictures on a double-bill with Slaughter of the Vampires as The Vampire-Beast Craves Blood. Long also worked, uncredited, on the classic Repulsion (1965), a British psychological horror film directed by Roman Polanski, based on a scenario by Gérard Brach and Polanski. It was Polanski’s first English language film, and was filmed in London. The cast includes Catherine Deneuve, Ian Hendry, John Fraser and Yvonne Furneaux. Polanski himself makes a cameo as a spoon player among a trio of street buskers.
Long also helped make The Sorcerers (1967), a science fiction/horror film directed by Michael Reeves, starring Boris Karloff, Ian Ogilvy and Susan George, from an original story and screenplay by John Burke. Reeves and his childhood friend Tom Baker (not the Doctor Who star) re-wrote sections of the screenplay, including the ending. Long was strapped to the top of a car to film one sequence.
Long retired from film directing in the early 1980’s, however in 2006 he briefly returned to direct The Other Side of the Screen a one-off documentary about various aspects of film making, hosted by Paul Martin, star of Flog It!.
The “Adventures of” comedies were released to DVD on 2 June 2008. The following year several of his other sex films, On the Game, Sex and the Other Woman and This That and the Other were also released on DVD for the very first time.
Long was interviewed for the BBC’s Balderdash and Piffle programme (broadcast 25 May 2007), and the British horror and comedy episodes of the British Films Forever series (“Magic, Murder and Monsters” broadcast 25 August 2007, “Sauce, Satire and Sillyness” broadcast 9 September 2007). Simon Sheridan’s long-awaited biography of Long – X-Rated – Adventures of an Exploitation Filmmaker – was published in July 2008.
The Hollywood blacklist—as the broader entertainment industry blacklist is generally known—was the mid-20th-century list of screenwriters, actors, directors, musicians, and other U.S. entertainment professionals who were denied employment in the field because of their political beliefs or associations, real or suspected. Artists were barred from work on the basis of their alleged membership in or sympathy toward the American Communist Party, involvement in liberal or humanitarian political causes that enforcers of the blacklist associated with communism, and/or refusal to assist investigations into Communist Party activities; some were blacklisted merely because their names came up at the wrong place and time. Even during the period of its strictest enforcement, the late 1940’s through the late 1950’s, the blacklist was rarely made explicit and verifiable, but it caused direct damage to the careers of scores of American artists, often made betrayal of friendship (not to mention principle) the price for a livelihood, and promoted ideological censorship across the entire industry.
A group of studio executives, acting under the aegis of the Motion Picture Association of America, announced the firing of the artists—the so-called Hollywood Ten – in what has become known as the Waldorf Statement.
The Hollywood blacklist is rooted in events of the 1930’s and the early 1940’s, encompassing the height of the Great Depression and World War II. During this era, long before the horrors of Soviet premier Joseph Stalin’s rule became common knowledge in the West, the American Communist Party attracted a large number of followers, many of them young idealists in the field of arts and entertainment. The party was the primary force in the United States fighting for the rights of poor people, and was centrally involved in campaigns for improvement in welfare, unemployment, and social security benefits. Two major film industry strikes during the 1930’s increased tensions between the Hollywood producers and the unions, particularly the Communist-affiliated Screen Writers Guild.
In 1941, producer Walt Disney took out an ad in Variety, the industry trade magazine, declaring his conviction that “Communist agitation” was behind a cartoonists and animators’ strike. According to historians Larry Ceplair and Steven Englund, “In actuality, the strike had resulted from Disney’s overbearing paternalism, high-handedness, and insensitivity.” Inspired by Disney, California State Senator Jack Tenney, chairman of the state legislature’s Joint Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities, launched an investigation of “Reds in movies”.
The first systematic Hollywood blacklist was instituted on November 25, 1947, the day after ten writers and directors were cited for contempt of Congress for refusing to give testimony to the House Committee on Un-American Activities.
- Alvah Bessie, screenwriter
- Herbert Biberman, screenwriter and director
- Lester Cole, screenwriter
- Edward Dymtryk, director
- Ring Lardner Jr., screenwriter
- John Howard Lawson, screenwriter
- Albert Maltz, screenwriter
- Samuel Ornitz, screenwriter
- Adrian Scott, producer and screenwriter
- Dalton Trumbo, screenwriter
On June 22, 1950, a pamphlet called Red Channels appeared, focusing on the field of broadcasting. It named 151 entertainment industry professionals in the context of “Red Fascists and their sympathizers”; soon most of those named, along with a host of other artists, were barred from employment in much of the entertainment field.
The blacklist continued through the House Committee of Un-American Activities (HUAC) through until 1957 when blacklisted actor Norman Lloyd was hired by Alfred Hitchcock as an associate producer for his anthology series Alfred Hitchcock Presents, then entering its third season on the network. More re-hirings followed up until the first main break in the Hollywood blacklist on January 20, 1960, when director Otto Preminger publicly announced that Dalton Trumbo, one of the best known members of the Hollywood Ten, was the screenwriter of his forthcoming film Exodus. Six-and-a-half months later, with Exodus still to debut, the New York Times announced that Universal Pictures would give Trumbo screen credit for his role as writer on Spartacus, a decision star Kirk Douglas is now recognized as largely responsible for. On October 6, Spartacus premiered—the first movie to bear Trumbo’s name since he had received story credit on Emergency Wedding in 1950. Since 1947, he had written or co-written approximately seventeen motion pictures without credit. Exodus followed in December, also bearing Trumbo’s name. The blacklist was now clearly coming to an end, but its effects continue to reverberate even until the present. Shameful.
Forrest J. Ackerman (born Forrest James Ackerman; November 24, 1916 – December 4, 2008) was an American collector of science fiction books and movie memorabilia and a science fiction fan; a magazine editor, science fiction writer and literary agent, a founder of science fiction fandom and possibly the world’s most avid collector of genre books and movie memorabilia. He was the editor and principal writer of the American magazine Famous Monsters of Filmland, as well as an actor and producer (Vampirella) from the 1950’s into the 1980’s, and appears in two documentaries related to this period in popular culture: Jason V. Brock’s The AckerMonster Chronicles!, which details his life and career, and Charles Beaumont: The Life of Twilight Zone’s Magic Man. He was, for over seven decades, one of science fiction’s staunchest spokesmen and promoters.
Also called “Forry,” “The Ackermonster,” “4e” and “4SJ,” Ackerman was central to the formation, organization, and spread of science fiction fandom, and a key figure in the wider cultural perception of science fiction as a literary, art and film genre. Famous for his wordplay, he coined the genre nickname “sci-fi”. In 1953, he was voted “#1 Fan Personality” by the members of the World Science Fiction Society, a unique Hugo Award never granted to anyone else.
Ackerman was born Forrest James Ackerman (though he would refer to himself from the early 1930s on as “Forrest J Ackerman” with no period after the middle initial) on November 24, 1916 in Los Angeles, to Carroll and William Schilling Ackerman. He attended the University of California at Berkeley for a year (1934–1935), worked as a movie projectionist, and spent three years in the U.S. Army after enlisting on August 15, 1942.
Ackerman saw his first “imagi-movie” in 1922 (One Glorious Day), purchased his first science fiction magazine, Amazing Stories, in 1926, created The Boys’ Scientifiction Club in 1930 (“girl-fans were as rare as unicorn’s horns in those days”). He contributed to both of the first sci-fi fanzines, The Time Traveller, and the Science Fiction Magazine, in 1932, and by 1933 had 127 correspondents around the world.
He attended the 1st World Science Fiction Convention in 1939, where he wore the first “futuristicostume” (designed and created by Myrtle R. Douglas) and sparked fan costuming, the latest incarnation of which is cosplay. He attended every Worldcon but two thereafter during his lifetime. Ackerman invited Ray Bradbury to attend the Los Angeles Chapter of the Science Fiction League, then meeting weekly at Clifton’s Cafeteria in downtown Los Angeles. Bradbury often attended meetings with his friend Ray Harryhausen; the two Rays had been introduced to each other by Ackerman. With $90 from Ackerman, Bradbury launched a fanzine, Futuria Fantasia, in 1939.
Ackerman amassed an extremely large and complete collection of science fiction, fantasy and horror film memorabilia, which, until 2002, he maintained in a remarkable 18-room home and museum known as the “Son of Ackermansion.” (The original Ackermansion where he lived from the early 1950’s until the mid-1970’s, was at 915 S. Sherbourne Drive in Los Angeles) This second house, in the Los Feliz district of Los Angeles, contained some 300,000 books and pieces of movie and science-fiction memorabilia. From 1951 to 2002, Ackerman entertained some 50,000 fans at open houses.
He knew most of the writers of science fiction in the first half of the twentieth-century. As a literary agent, he represented some 200 writers, and he served as agent of record for many long lost authors, thereby allowing their work to be reprinted in anthologies. He was Ed Wood’s “illiterary” agent. He kept all of the stories submitted to his magazine, even the ones he rejected; Stephen King has stated that Ackerman showed up to a King book signing with a copy of a story King had submitted for publication when he was 11.
Through his magazine, Famous Monsters of Filmland (1958–1983), Ackerman introduced the history of the science fiction, fantasy and horror film genres to a generation of young readers. At a time when most movie-related publications glorified the stars in front of the camera, “Uncle Forry”, as he was referred to by many of his fans, promoted the behind-the-scenes artists involved in the magic of movies. In this way, Ackerman provided inspiration to many who would later become successful artists, including Joe Dante, Peter Jackson, Steven Spielberg, Tim Burton, Stephen King, Gene Simmons (of the band KISS), Rick Baker, George Lucas, Danny Elfman, Frank Darabont, John Landis and countless other writers, directors, artists and craftsmen.
He was married to teacher and translator Wendayne (Wendy) Wahrman (1912–1990) until her death. Her original first name was Matilda; Forry created “Wendayne” for her. Wendayne suffered a serious head injury when she was violently mugged while on a trip to Europe in 1990, and the injury soon after led to her death.
A lifelong fan of science fiction “B-movies”, Ackerman had cameos in over 210 films, including bit parts in many monster movies and science fiction films (The Howling, Return of the Living Dead Part II), spoofs and comedies (Amazon Women on the Moon), and at least one major music video (Michael Jackson’s Thriller). Ackerman was fluent in the international language Esperanto.
In 2003, Ackerman said, “I aim at hitting 100 and becoming the George Burns of science fiction”. His health, however, had been failing, and after one final trip to the hospital, informed his best friend and caregiver Joe Moe that he didn’t want to go on. Honouring his wishes, his friends brought him home to hospice care. However, it turned out that in order to get Ackerman home, the hospital had cured his infection with antibiotics. So Forrest went on for a few more weeks holding what he delighted in calling, “a living funeral”. In his final days he saw everyone he wanted to say good-bye to. John Landis recalled that “Although he was extremely ill he told me he could not die until he voted for Obama for President and he did.”
Forrest J Ackerman died on December 4, 2008, at the age of 92. He is interred at Glendale Forest Lawn with his wife Wendayne “Rocket To The Rue Morgue” Ackerman. His plaque simply reads, “Sci-Fi Was My High”.
Scarlett Johansson (born November 22, 1984) is an American actress, model and singer. Johansson made her film debut in North (1994) and was later nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead for her performance in Manny & Lo (1996). She rose to further prominence with her roles in The Horse Whisperer (1998) and Ghost World (2001). She shifted to adult roles with her performances in Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003) and Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation (2003), for which she won a BAFTA award for Best Actress in a Leading Role.
A role in A Love Song for Bobby Long (2004) earned Johansson a third Golden Globe for Best Actress nomination. Johansson garnered another Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress with her role in Woody Allen’s Match Point (2005). She went on to star in two further Allen movies: Scoop (2006) and Vicky Christina Barcelona (2008). Johansson has appeared in other successful films, such as Christopher Nolan’s The Prestige (2006). Johansson played popular Marvel comic book character Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff in the films Iron Man 2 (2010) and The Avengers (2012). She will next be seen playing Janet Leigh in Hitchcock.
What if John Hughes’ The Breakfast Club had ended not with the Brat Pack finding friendship, love, and understanding, but with everyone dying horribly and painfully? Directed by Matthew Spradlin based on his own graphic novel, Bad Kids Go to Hell sees six prep school kids serving detention together on a gloomy Saturday. The rather ordinary punishment turns deadly, however, as suspicious “accidents” claim them one by one.
A cast of relative unknowns comprise the main cast, including Ali Faulkner (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1), Roger Edwards (Freelancers), Marc Donato (Degrassi: The Next Generation), Cameron Deane Stewart (Pitch Perfect), Augie Duke (The Mentalist), and Amanda Alch (When Zachary Beaver Came to Town). In an obvious but neat bit of stunt casting, The Breakfast Club star Judd Nelson plays the school headmaster.
Check out the trailer and Facebook page.
Insidious, released in April 2011, was one of the most profitable films of last year, grossing $97 million worldwide on a budget of $1.5 million. It was therefore inevitable that a sequel would be on the way… The cast, writer Leigh Whannell and director James Wan are returning for Insidious Chapter 2, which Film District will release August 30, 2013. Jason Blum, who produced Insidious, is producing through his Blumhouse Productions. Brian Kavanaugh Jones, Oren Peli, Steven Schneider, and Charles Layton are executive producing the film, which is set to begin production January 15 in Los Angeles. Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne will reprise their roles in the sequel, about a couple and their son, confronting the demons that still possess their young boy.
Henri-Georges Clouzot (November 20, 1907 – January 12, 1977) was a French film director, screenwriter and producer. He is best remembered for his work in the thriller film genre, having directed The Wages of Fear (1953) and Les Diaboliques (1954), which are critically recognized to be among the greatest films from the 1950’s. Clouzot also directed documentary films, including The Mystery of Picasso (1956), which was declared a national treasure by the government of France.
Clouzot was an early fan of the cinema and, desiring a career as a writer, moved to Paris. He was later hired by producer Adolphe Osso to work in Berlin, writing French-language versions of German films. After being fired from German studios due to his friendship with Jewish producers, Clouzot returned to France, where he spent years bedridden after contracting tuberculosis. Upon recovering, Clouzot found work in Nazi occupied France as a screenwriter for the German-owned company Continental Films, where he wrote and directed films that were very popular in France. His second film Le Corbeau (1943) drew controversy over its harsh look at provincial France and Clouzot was fired from Continental before its release. As a result of his association with Continental, Clouzot was barred by the French government from filmmaking until 1947.
After the ban was lifted, Clouzot re-established his reputation and popularity in France during the late 1940’s with successful films including Quai des Orfèvres (1947), Manon (1949), Retour à la Vie (1949), and the comedy film Miquette et Sa Mère (1950).
In the early and mid-1950’s, Clouzot drew acclaim from international critics and audiences for his two best films, The Wages of Fear (1953) and Les Diaboliques (1954). In order to gain as much independence as possible, Clouzot created his own production company called Véra Films, which he named after his wife. The Wages of Fear starring Yves Montand, is based on a 1950 novel by Georges Arnaud. When a South American oil well owned by an American company catches fire, the company hires four European men, down on their luck, to drive two trucks over mountain dirt roads, carrying the nitroglycerine needed to extinguish the fire.
Clouzot’s next big hit wasthe thriller Diabolique, to which he managed to sign the rights too only moments before director Alfred Hitchcock. Diabolique stars Simone Signoret, Véra Clouzet and Paul Meurisse, and is based on the novel Celle qui n’était plus (She Who Was No More). The story blends elements of thriller and horror, which involves the story of a cruel headmaster who brutalizes his wife and his mistress. The two women murder him and dump his body in a swimming pool, but when the pool is drained, no corpse is found.
Both films would serve as source material for remakes decades later, most famously Wages of Fear was remade by William Friedkin as Sorcerer (1977).
Clouzet followed up with the documentary The Mystery of Picasso (1956), Les Espions (1957) and the Bridgitte Bardot starring La Vérité (1960), after which Clouzot’s wife Véra died of a heart attack and Clouzot’s career suffered due to depression, illness and new critical views of films from the French New Wave. Clouzot’s career became less active in later years, limited to a few television documentaries and two feature films in the 1960’s, one of which, L’Enfer (1964) remained unfinished until a release in 2009. Clouzot wrote several unused scripts in the 1970’s and died in Paris in 1977.
Synopsis: The FBI estimates there are currently up to 300 active serial killers in the United States. What would happen if these killers had a way of communicating and connecting with each other? What if they were able to work together and form alliances as they left a trail of blood across the country? What if one brilliant and charismatic, yet psychotic serial killer was able to bring them all together and activate a cult of believers following his every command?
The Following is from Bonanza Productions Inc. in association with Outerbanks Entertainment and Warner Bros. Television. The series is created, written and executive-produced by Williamson. Marcos Siega (“Dexter,” “The Vampire Diaries”) also serves as an executive producer and directed the pilot.
Twenty-six directors. Twenty-six ways to die. The ABCs OF DEATH is perhaps the most ambitious anthology film ever conceived with productions spanning fifteen countries and featuring segments directed by over two dozen of the world’s leading talents in contemporary genre film. Inspired by children’s educational books, the motion picture is composed of twenty-six individual chapters, each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet. The directors were then given free rein in choosing a word to create a story involving death.
It will be available on demand on January 31, 2013, and in select theaters March 8th.
FX has picked up a third installment of its horror anthology franchise American Horror Story with a 13-episode order. Production of the untitled new cycle of AHS will begin next summer and premiere in the fall of 2013. FX and AHS creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s are keeping mum on details about the next incarnation but announced that, like was the case with American Horror Story and American Horror Story: Asylum, many of the actors will return in different roles next year, including star Jessica Lange.
The news comes with Season 2, American Horror Story: Asylum, still on the air, headed to its conclusion on January 23. It has been a formidable demo force in the Wednesday 10 PM time period, with last night’s episode topping all broadcast networks in Adults 18-34 (2.1). Vs. last week, AHS: Asylum was up 30% in Adults 18-34 and 9% in Adults 18-49. “With American Horror Story: Asylum, Ryan and Brad have raised the bar in every way from Murder House, the firstAmerican Horror Story miniseries,” said FX president John Landgraf.
Lange won Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Emmy awards for her role as Constance Langdon in 20th Century Fox TV-produced American Horror Story. Starring as Sister Jude in AHS: Asylum, Lange will be moving to the Lead Actress category in the Golden Globe and Emmy awards this year, FX said.
Yaphet Frederick Kotto (born November 15, 1937) is an African-American actor, known for numerous film roles including the science-fiction/horror film Alien, the science-fiction/action film The Running Man and as the main villain in the 1973 James Bond movie Live and Let Die. He is also a music producer who is a part of Legendary Inc., founded by Young L of The Pack.
Kotto was born in New York City, the son of Gladys Marie, a nurse and army officer, and Avraham Kotto (originally named Njoki Manga Bell), a businessman from Cameroon. In his autobiography titled Royalty, Kotto writes that his father was “the crown prince of Cameroon.” Kotto stated that he found out that his family was royal in adult life while studying his family’s lineage, and also stated that he is a descendant of Queen Victoria, which has been denied by the Buckingham Palace press office.
Kotto’s father, who emigrated to the U.S. in the 1920s, was, according to Kotto, an observant Jew who spoke Hebrew. Kotto also stated that his great-grandfather King Alexander Bell ruled the Douala region of Cameroon in the late-19th century and was also a practicing Jew. Kotto has said that his paternal family oriinated from Israel and migrated to Egypt and then Cameroon, and have been African Jews for many generations.
Being black and Jewish gave other children (both whites and blacks) even more reason, he has said, to pick on him growing up in New York City. “It was rough coming up,” Kotto said. “And then going to shul, putting a yarmulke on, having to face people who were primarily Baptists in the Bronx meant that on Fridays, I was in some heavy fistfights.”
By the age of 16, he was studying acting at the Actor’s Mobile Theater Studio, and at 19, he made his professional acting debut in Othello. He also was a member of the Actors Studio in New York. Kotto got his start in acting on Broadway, where he appeared in The Great White Hope, among other productions.
His film debut was in 1963 in an uncredited role in 4 For Texas. He performed in Nothing But a Man in 1964 and played a supporting role in the 1968 film The Thomas Crown Affair. In 1973 he landed the role of the James Bond villain Mr. Big in Live and Let Die, as well as roles in Across 110th Street and Truck Turner. Kotto portrayed Idi Amin in the 1977 television film Raid on Entebbe. He also starred as an auto worker in the 1978 film Paul Schrader film Blue Collar.
The following year he played Parker in the sci-fi horror film Alien. Kotto and Harry Dean Stanton played ships Engineers Brett (Harry Dean Stanton) and Parker (Yaphet Kotto) who stay behind to monitor their progress and make repairs while the crew check out the planetoid.. which results in all hell breaking loose. Alien garnered both critical acclaim and box office success, receiving an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects, Saturn Awards for Best Science Fiction Film, Best Direction for Ridley Scott, and Best Supporting Actress for Cartwright, along with numerous other award nominations. It has remained highly praised in subsequent decades, being inducted into the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress in 2002 for historical preservation as a film which is “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
He followed with a supporting role in the 1980 prison drama Brubaker, featured in The Star Chamber (1983), and Terror in the Aisles (1984). In 1987, he appeared in the futuristic sci-fi movie The Running Man and in the underrated 1988 action-comedy Midnight Run, in which he portrayed Alonzo Mosely, an FBI agent. He also had a supporting role in Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991).
He then played Lieutenant Al Giardello in the television series Homocide: Life on the Street (1993-1999). He has written two books: Royalty, and The Second Coming of Christ, and also wrote scripts for Homicide: Life on the Street.
Le Manoir Du Diable (1896, Fr.) (aka The Haunted Castle), which means “The Manor of the Devil” is a 1896 three-minute-long film by Georges Méliès. The film contained many traditional pantomime elements and was intentionally meant to amuse people, rather than frighten them. Nonetheless, it is considered by many to be the first horror film, as well as the first vampire film.
The film starts off with a large bat flying into a medieval castle. Once in, the bat circles slowly while flapping its monstrous wings before suddenly changing into Mephistopheles (Georges Méliès). After preparing a cauldron, the demon produces skeletons, ghosts, and witches from its bubbling contents before one of the summoned underworld cavaliers holds up a crucifix and Satan vanishes in a blast of smoke.
It was released on Christmas Eve, 1896, at the Theatre Robert Houdin, 8 boulevard des Italiens, Paris. In English, this film has been known as The Haunted Castle, The Devil’s Castle, The Devil’s Manor, The Manor of the Devil, and The House of the Devil. The Haunted Castle is now in the public domain.
The Vampire (1913), directed by Robert G. Vignola, showed a different version of vampires, the vampires in question were not undead bloodsucking fiends but ‘vamps’. Such femme fatales were inspired by a poem by Rudyard Kipling called “The Vampire”, composed in 1897. This poem was written as kind of commentary on a painting of a female vampire by Philip Burne-Jones exhibited in the same year. Lyrics from Kipling’s poem: A fool there was . . . , describing a seduced man, were used as the title of the film A Fool There Was (1915) starring Theda Bara as the ‘vamp’ in question and the poem was used in the publicity for the film.
A Night of Horror (German: Nächte des Grauens) is a 1916 silent German horror film directed by Richard Oswald, Arthur Robison and starring Werner Krauss from Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari. I’ve never seen it and can’t seem to locate a copy anywhere on the net.
Drakula halála or Dracula’s Death, sometimes translated as The Death of Drakula — is a 1921 Hungarian horror movie, currently believed to be a lost film, that was written and directed by Károly Lajthay. The film is notable because it marks the first credited screen appearance of the vampire Count Dracula, though recent scholarly research indicates that the film’s plot does not actually follow the narrative of Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. After originally opening in Vienna in 1921 and enjoying a long and successful European run, the film was later re-edited and re-released in Budapest in 1923.
The film is about a woman who experiences frightening visions after visiting an insane asylum where one of the inmates claims to be Count Dracula (here following the Hungarian spelling Drakula), and she has trouble determining if the visions were real or merely nightmares.
Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (translated as Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror; or simply Nosferatu) is a classic 1922 German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok. The film, shot in 1921 and released in 1922, was an unauthorized adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, with names and other details changed because the studio could not obtain the rights to the novel (for instance, “vampire” became “Nosferatu” and “Count Dracula” became “Count Orlok”).
In contrast to Dracula, Orlok does not create other vampires, but kills his victims, causing the townfolk to blame the plague, which ravages the city. Also, Orlok must sleep by day, as sunlight would kill him, while the original Dracula is only weakened by sunlight. The ending is also substantially different from that of Dracula. The count is ultimately destroyed at sunrise when the “Mina” character sacrifices herself to him.
This was the only film made by Prana Film; the company declared bankruptcy after Bram Stoker’s estate, acting for his widow, Florence Stoker, sued for copyright infringement and won. The court ordered all existing prints of Nosferatu burned, but one purported copy of the film had already been distributed around the world. These prints were duplicated over the years… thank God.
London After Midnight (1927) aka The Hypnotist is a silent film with horror overtones. The film stars Lon Chaney and was directed by Tod Browning. It is also a lost film, quite possibly the most famous and eagerly sought of all lost films. Chaney’s makeup for the film is noteworthy, for the sharpened teeth and the hypnotic eye effect he achieved with special wire fittings which he wore like monocles. Based on surviving accounts, he purposefully gave the “vampire” character an absurd quality, because it was the film’s Scotland Yard detective character (also played by Chaney) in a disguise. Browning later remade the film, with some changes to the plot, as Mark of the Vampire (Lionel Barrymore plays the police inspector and Bela Lugosi portrays the “vampire”).
Dracula (1931) Universal Studios entered a Golden Age of monster movies in the ’30s, beginning with Dracula. Directed by Tod Browning and starring Bela Lugosi as the title character, the film is based on the 1924 stage play Dracula by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston, which in turn is based on the novel Dracula by Bram Stoker. Enthusiastic young Hollywood producer Carl Laemmle, Jr. also saw the box office potential in Stoker’s gothic chiller, and he legally acquired the novel’s film rights. Initially, he wanted Dracula to be a spectacle on a scale with the lavish silent films The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923) and The Phantom of the Opera (1925).
Today, Dracula is widely regarded as a classic of the era and of its genre. Vampires were here to stay, the rest, as they say, is history…
A funny new twist on a classic love story, WARM BODIES is a poignant tale about the power of human connection. After a zombie epidemic, R (a highly unusual zombie) encounters Julie (a human survivor), and rescues her from a zombie attack. Julie sees that R is different from the other zombies, and as the two form a special relationship in their struggle for survival, R becomes increasingly more human — setting off an exciting, romantic, and often comical chain of events that begins to transform the other zombies and maybe even the whole lifeless world.
Directed by Jonathan Levine who made the excellent All the Boys Love Mandy Lane. Check it out…