Droplet by droplet, the morbidly-dubbed “Studio that Dripped Blood” is slowly coming back to life. Hammer Studios – the legendary British film company responsible for a graveyard of ghoulish delights in the '50s, '60s and '70s – has announced that a Woman in Black sequel (titled Woman in Black: Angel of Death) has begun filming. The flick is yet another step forward for the once-defunct House of Horror, having risen from the dead in 2007 to release Let Me In (2010), The Resident (2011) and The Woman In Black (2012). Still, for any true Hammer fan – while new films are cool and all – there awaits a whole host of characters and properties just dying for a comeback in modern retellings, particularly if coupled with that splatter of that old Hammer magic.
If 91-year-old Christopher Lee can unleash heavy metal albums and still appear in films, he can still don the cape – even in a small role. A fierce, blood-thirsty vampire series is what this generation needs. No love interest or wimpy waif lead need apply.
The Curse of Frankenstein
American film fans used to a lumbering lummox and little else owe it to themselves to investigate the Hammer series (seven in all) where Herr Doctor is the true star, and new undead atrocities await each installment.
Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires
Karate action meets the undead? Winner! While the original (a coupling of Hammer and the Shaw Brothers Studio) failed to do much box office, today’s climate seems right for this reworking, especially in light of The Rock getting ready to battle demons.
Dennis Wheatley adaptations
Either When the Devil Rides Out or To the Devil a Daughter could make for a good retelling. Wheatley’s tales are crackin’ good on their own – let alone that modern CG techniques could only improve the dated supernatural elements.
One Million Years B.C.
Okay, well not even close to scary, Hammer is also known for its output of cavegirl movies (including the forementioned “One Million Years B.C.” that put Raquel Welch in a fur bikini. Nuff said). Take a host of today’s hottest stars, drag out the animals skins and let’s have one more fake dinosaur fight, shall we? Who’s in!?
Former screen siren Raquel Welch has found love with TV talent show boss Nigel Lythgoe, according to a new U.K. report. The 73-year-old Hollywood icon has been dating the American Idol producer, 64, for more than a month and is said to be smitten with the Brit, sources tell the Sunday Express.
An insider explains, "Raquel finds Nigel fascinating and an absolute English gentleman. Even though she is almost 10 years older than him, she stills looks great and Nigel is so smitten he seems to almost worship the ground she walks on.
"The chemistry between them is so strong, they are just going with it. Raquel's fully aware that age might not be on her or Nigel's side. But I haven't seen her as happy as she is with him for more years than I care to remember."
Lythgoe most recently dated Elvis Presley's ex-wife Priscilla, while The One Million Years B.C. beauty has four failed marriages behind her.
Gina Gershon has been cast as fashion mogul Donatella Versace in a new TV movie about the death of her brother. House of Versace will also feature Enrico Colantoni as Gianni Versace and Raquel Welch as the siblings' Aunt Lucia.
The film, which will chronicle Donatella's efforts to keep the family's fashion empire alive following the death of her brother in 1997, will be based on Deborah Ball's book House of Versace: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder, and Survival.
The movie will premiere in the U.S. on 5 October (13).
Funnyman Mike Myers is to make his directorial debut by taking charge of a new documentary about talent manager Shep Gordon. The Austin Powers star will also produce Supermensch.
Myers and Gordon have a long history dating back to Wayne's World in 1991 when they feuded over the use of an Alice Cooper song on the soundtrack, but they have become close friends.
Myers says, "I met Shep Gordon in 1991 on the set of Wayne's World. I thought he was a perfect combination of Brian Epstein, Marshall McLuhan and Mr. Magoo. I've been trying to get Shep to agree to let me make a movie about him for 10 years. Last year he finally said yes. I loved him like a brother before we started making this film, and now having sifted through his life and his legacy, I love him even more."
Gordon has managed the careers of Cooper, Blondie, Luther Vandross and Raquel Welch, among others.
Myers' film will feature interviews with Cooper, Michael Douglas, Sylvester Stallone and Willie Nelson, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Composer Lucia Hwong has lodged a legal complaint against her former nanny, who allegedly stole expensive jewellery from the star's New York City apartment. The instrumentalist returned home from a vacation last month (Apr13) to discover a number of his precious gems had gone missing, so she confronted her live-in helper, Raquel Santos, who reportedly burst into tears and handed over slips to a pawn shop, where some of the items, such as a diamond and ruby necklace, were on display.
Hwong then filed papers with the Manhattan District Attorney's office and called the police, who arrested Santos at the performer's Park Avenue pad.
Santos' lawyer tells the New York Post, "The DA and I are endeavouring to resolve this matter. We expect the victim will not have lost any of her property."
The billionaire is renowned for throwing extravagant parties, and he went all out with a bash at the posh Dorchester Hotel in the U.K. capital ahead of his 30th birthday next month (Jul12).
The celebrity guestlist included Carey and Anderson, who chatted to the prince in a special VIP area of the hotel's bar.
The pair then mingled with former screen sirens Welch, Faye Dunaway and Stephanie Beacham, as well as actresses Lea Michele, Marisa Tomei and supermodel Jerry Hall.
Anderson ensured she stood out at the glitzy event by grabbing a microphone to wish the third-in-line to the Brunei throne a happy birthday, before presenting him with a wrapped gift.
Prince Azim is no stranger to throwing parties which attract A-listers - in 2009, Janet Jackson and Sophia Loren attended his 28th birthday celebrations.
Theatrics slapstick and cheer are cinematic qualities you rarely find outside the realm of animation. Disney perfected it with their pantheon of cartoon classics mixing music humor spectacle and light-hearted drama that swept up children while still capturing the imaginations and hearts of their parents. But these days even reinterpretations of fairy tales get the gritty make-over leaving little room for silliness and unfiltered glee. Emerging through that dark cloud is Mirror Mirror a film that achieves every bit of imagination crafted by its two-dimensional predecessors and then some. Under the eye of master visualist Tarsem Singh (The Fall Immortals) Mirror Mirror's heightened realism imbues it with the power to pull off anything — and the movie never skimps on the anything.
Like its animated counterparts Mirror Mirror stays faithful to its source material but twists it just enough to feel unique. When Snow White (Lily Collins) was a little girl her father the King ventured into a nearby dark forest to do battle with an evil creature and was never seen or heard from again. The kingdom was inherited by The Queen (Julia Roberts) Snow's evil stepmother and the fair-skinned beauty lived locked up in the castle until her 18th birthday. Grown up and tired of her wicked parental substitute White sneaks out of the castle to the village for the first time. There she witnesses the economic horrors The Queen has imposed upon the people of her land all to fuel her expensive beautification. Along the way Snow also meets Prince Alcott (Armie Hammer) who is suffering from his own money troubles — mainly being robbed by a band of stilt-wearing dwarves. When the Queen catches wind of the secret excursion she casts Snow out of the castle to be murdered by her assistant Brighton (Nathan Lane).
Fairy tales take flack for rejecting the idea of women being capable but even with its flighty presentation and dedication to the old school Disney method Mirror Mirror empowers its Snow White in a genuine way thanks to Collins' snappy charming performance. After being set free by Brighton Snow crosses paths with the thieving dwarves and quickly takes a role on their pilfering team (which she helps turn in to a Robin Hooding business). Tarsem wisely mines a spectrum of personalities out of the seven dwarves instead of simply playing them for one note comedy. Sure there's plenty of slapstick and pun humor (purposefully and wonderfully corny) but each member of the septet stands out as a warm compassionate companion to Snow even in the fantasy world.
Mirror Mirror is richly designed and executed in true Tarsem-fashion with breathtaking costumes (everything from ball gowns to the dwarf expando-stilts to ridiculous pirate ship hats with working canons) whimsical sets and a pitch-perfect score by Disney-mainstay Alan Menken. The world is a storybook and even its monsters look like illustrations rather than photo-real creations. But what makes it all click is the actors. Collins holds her own against the legendary Julia Roberts who relishes in the fun she's having playing someone despicable. She delivers every word with playful bite and her rapport with Lane is off-the-wall fun. Armie Hammer riffs on his own Prince Charming physique as Alcott. The only real misgiving of the film is the undercooked relationship between him and Snow. We know they'll get together but the journey's half the fun and Mirror Mirror serves that portion undercooked.
Children will swoon for Mirror Mirror but there's plenty here for adults — dialogue peppered with sharp wisecracks and a visual style ripped from an elegant tapestry. The movie wears its heart on its sleeve and rarely do we get a picture where both the heart and the sleeve feel truly magical.
The veteran actress, who shot to fame with her iconic bikini-clad image in 1966 movie One Million Years B.C., is adamant attitudes to sex have changed and teenagers are trapped in an "era of porn".
She tells Men's Health magazine, "We've gotten to the point in our culture where we're all sex addicts, literally... This era of porn is at least partially responsible for it. Where is the anticipation and the personalisation?...
"I don't care if I'm becoming one of those old fogeys who says, 'Back in my day we didn't have to hear about sex all the time'. Nobody remembers what it's like to be left to form your own ideas about what's erotic and sexual."
The One Million Years B.C. star tells WENN she fell down a flight of stairs on Christmas Day (25Dec11), but refused to let the accident stall her work commitments.
She explains, "I get injured doing everything. Christmas Day I came home from dinner and I fell down the stairs and broke my left foot. It was horrible because all I could think of, being an actress, while I was falling was, 'My God, I've got a shoot next week and I won't be able to wear those high heels.'
"They (doctors) wanted to put me in a wheelchair and I said, 'No you won't. I'll figure it out!'"
The One Million Years B.C. star is famous for her sun-kissed complexion and she insists a few rays on the beach are good for you.
While many stars opt for fake tans and warn of skin damage from too much sunshine, Welch says, "When you have Latina blood you don't burn like white people, so to speak."
The actress admits her Bolivian father was "very sensitive" when it came to protecting his daughter from too much sun, insisting she wear a hat at the beach, but Welch was too cool to pay attention.
She tells WENN, "I grew up in La Hoya and there were all these surfers and you didn't wear hats to the beach. After high school I would slather the moisturiser on."
Nowadays she takes more precautions: "I wear a huge Greta Garbo hat just to go out for a walk, but I still go and bake on my holidays near the sea and I lie out in the sun. I think we should all spend some time in the sunshine. There's a lot of Vitamin D and it makes you feel good."
And she urges Hollywood's modern beauties to stop worrying about how the sun will prematurely age them: "You've got to live your life and not worry about how you're going to age. It's just too much."