British director Ken Loach insists he has no intention of retiring from making fictional films after appearing to suggest earlier this year (14) that Jimmy's Hall will be his last. The acclaimed filmmaker seemed to suggest the movie would be his last narrative film when he was asked about his future projects at a press conference at the Berlin International Film Festival in February (14), where he received a lifetime achievement award.
However Loach, 77, has revealed he made the comments under stress following the pre-production process for Jimmy's Hall, which is due to be unveiled at the Cannes Film Festival later this month (May14), and insists he will make another film.
He tells The Hollywood Reporter, "I kind of thought I wouldn't get through another one just as we were beginning Jimmy's Hall because it's a moment of maximum pressure when you haven't shot a thing but you're knackered from all the prep and you've been away from home for a long time and you still have to get through the shoot.
"It's quite a daunting prospect, the effort you've got to find from somewhere and the nervous and emotional energy and all that. But now having come out the other side, while I'm not sure we'll get another of that size away, we'll at least get a little film together of some sort (with writer Paul Laverty) more akin to a documentary scale."
Village People star Victor Willis has given the Los Angeles Clippers organisation permission to play his group's Y.M.C.A. anthem at basketball games again after initially banning executives from using the tune over the Donald Sterling racism scandal. National Basketball Association Commissioner Adam Silver handed team owner Sterling a lifetime ban and urged him to sell the team after the businessman acknowledged that he had made ill-advised comments about African-American players in a heated exchange with a former girlfriend, which was caught on tape and obtained by TMZ.com.
Willis was one of the first celebrities to take aim at Sterling after the audio went viral over the weekend (26-27Apr14), and he called on Clippers bosses to cease playing Y.M.C.A. at games, but he changed his tune on Tuesday (29Apr14) after Sterling's punishment was announced.
He tweeted, "YMCA ban lifted! I'll get my people right on it. Feel like leading a celebratory YMCA dance tonight @LAClippers game. Go Adam!"
Sterling was also ordered to pay a maximum $2.5 million (GBP1.6 million) fine.
"Just right Com. Silver. Surprised and delighted the actions of NBA were so complete. Commissioner Silver for Commissioner of Congress!" Actor Val Kilmer applauds National Basketball Association commissioner Adam Silver for handing Los Angeles Clippers boss Donald Sterling a lifetime ban and a $2.5 million (£1.6 million) fine for racially-charged remarks he made to a girlfriend in leaked audio footage, which went viral over the weekend (26Apr14).
Outspoken moviemaker Spike Lee has waded into the racism drama swirling around the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team, insisting remarks attributed to Donald Sterling are "tainting the league and tainting America". Sterling hit the headlines over the weekend (26Apr14) when audio of him rebuking a girlfriend for posting a photo of herself with black basketball legend Magic Johnson on Instagram went viral.
The ill-advised remarks prompted an immediate backlash, with celebrities like Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne and Clippers fan Queen Latifah calling for a boycott of Sterling's team, which is currently competing in the NBA play-offs.
And now basketball superfan Lee has added his thoughts to the mix, telling CNN that Sterling's remarks make the Clippers boss look like a slave owner.
He says, "I don't know the bylaws of the league but he (Sterling) has to go... because he's tainting all the other 29 partners, he's tainting the league, and he's tainting America.
"When you hear something like that, that is the mentality of a slave master. He sees his players as slaves."
Oprah Winfrey has also commented on the drama, telling U.S. breakfast news show This Morning that Sterling's remarks suggest "a plantation mentality in the 21st Century".
Meanwhile, Lee insists he's not surprised by the drama surrounding Sterling, revealing that his cousin Baron Davis, who played for the Clippers from 2008 to 2011, told him "a whole lot of stuff" about the owner.
He adds, "People say, 'Well doesn't he (Sterling) know that all his players are black?' Masters knew that too when we were out there in the cotton fields working."
At a press conference on Tuesday (29Apr14), National Basketball Association commissioner Adam Silver handed Sterling a lifetime ban from NBA games and related activities, and fined him $2.5 million (£1.6 million). He will also be stripped of ownership of the Clippers. Silver claims he has the full support of several basketball franchise owners to force the sale of the team.
The commissioner arrived at his decision after interviewing Sterling and determining that the voice on the audio, obtained by TMZ.com, was his.
He said, "Mr. Sterling acknowledged that it was his voice on the tape."
Silver called the Clippers boss' remarks "hateful" and "deeply offensive".
R&B star Tank has pulled out of plans to perform the U.S. National Anthem at Tuesday night's (29Apr14) Los Angeles Clippers game amid a racism scandal swirling around the basketball team's owner Donald Sterling. The businessman hit headlines over the weekend (26-27Apr14) following the emergence of an audio clip which features a man, believed to be him, voicing a number of inflammatory racial slurs.
The tape, which was obtained by TMZ.com, sparked a flurry of debate on Twitter.com, with a number of stars, including Red Hot Chili Peppers rocker Flea, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg and Kevin Hart, attacking Sterling and calling for a Clippers boycott.
Flea even urged the team to boycott Sunday's (27Apr14) game against the Golden State Warriors. Instead, players staged a silent protest during the warm-up session, wearing their red T-shirts inside out, with the logos hidden.
Retired basketball legend Earvin 'Magic' Johnson has urged Sterling to step down as the Clippers boss, adding, "He shouldn't own a team anymore."
Even L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti and President Barack Obama have commented on the existence of the tape, with the U.S. leader calling Sterling's alleged comments "incredibly offensive" and "racist".
And, as National Basketball Association officials investigate the matter, singer Tank has announced he won't be performing the Star-Spangled Banner at Tuesday's game in protest.
He says, "As an African American man and artist, I must take a stand on a matter that is so deeply personal to me.
"In light of the recent disturbing and offensive allegations, in good conscience, I cannot move forward with my scheduled appearance at Tuesday's Los Angeles Clippers game."
Meanwhile, officials at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People have rescinded a top honour they bestowed on Sterling in 2009 and they have scrapped plans to award the businessman a lifetime achievement prize at next month's (May14) NAACP Awards.
A statement from the Los Angeles Clippers, on behalf of Sterling, adds, "We have heard the tape on TMZ. We do not know if it is legitimate or it has been altered... Mr. Sterling is emphatic that (sic) what is reflected on that recording is not consistent with, nor does it reflect his views, beliefs or feelings... He feels terrible that such sentiments are being attributed to him and apologises to anyone who might have been hurt by them."
West Side Story actress Rita Moreno is set to be honoured with a lifetime achievement prize from U.S. magazine People En Espanol. Ricky Martin will present her with the accolade at a special ceremony next month (May14). It's the second big prize Moreno has picked up in 2014 - she was awarded the 50th Lifetime Achievement Award at the Screen Actors Guild prizegiving in January (14).
Veteran actor Carl Reiner and his late comedian pal Sid Caesar will be honoured at the upcoming Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival. The 92-year-old Ocean's Eleven star will be given the lifetime achievement prize, while his colleague Caesar will be remembered in a special memorial tribute on the opening night of the ninth annual event on 1 May (14).
TV icon Caesar, who passed away in February at the age of 91, will be honoured with a screening of the 1973 documentary Ten From Your Show of Shows, which is a compilation of skits from his 1950s variety programme, on which Reiner served as a writer.
Everybody Loves Raymond executive producer Phil Rosenthal will present the awards for Caesar and Reiner during the film festival launch gala in Beverly Hills.
Hollywood treats its audiences to so many love stories every year, but few quite like Bright Days Ahead: a movie, from French director Marion Vernoux, that touches on the enchanting pull of new love, but also those in a longtime marriage. Vernoux tackles the difficulties inherent in sustaining a relationship over a lifetime, bringing to light in her film just how much more valid a romance about a mature woman like her hero Caroline (played by Fanny Ardant) can be.
Speaking to Vernoux and Ardant, we tapped into what separates "authentic" love from that we often see in cinema and the true nature of love as it grows and changes over the course of one's life.
I can't remember the last time that I saw a movie that approached romance so honestly, in a way that actually felt like it would happen in real life. Was the specific intention to approach romance in a way that you don't often see in the movies?
Marion Vernoux: I didn’t deliberately set out to make this kind of different film. I wasn’t thinking of that as my approach. But I’m very glad you see it that way. For me, as Fanny has often said, too, I didn’t want a film that would have this layer of romanticism on top of it. I wanted it to seem believable that two people could get together and there could be this spark between them, but without having it be the usual overboard kind of reaction between them. To make it seem like it was something that could of actually happened.
Was there something specific about the character that really rang true?
Fanny Ardant: One part of the character of Caroline: she’s not easily bound. She likes her freedom. She’s not a conformist. I feel at ease with this character. It’s like a part of myself. The rest is cinema!
MV: For me, it was almost sort of an equation. I wanted to make a film that showed that when you fall in love, you don’t always fall in love the same way all the time. It’s not always the same. I wanted to show that how you fall in love and falling in love is something that can evolve. It evolves with you as a person based on your experience, based on your age, based on the life that you’ve lived. I have this fantasy that the older you get, the more experienced you get, the better you are at loving and being loved. That, for me, was what was important. That as you mature, you can progress in love.
That brings up something that I think is very interesting. I wonder why most romantic movies are about people in their 20s or their teens, not about mature women, who have had legitimate life experience. What do you think people in Hollywood are afraid of? And what value do movies about these women have that the usual products do not?
FA: If you look carefully at the literature — French, Russian, English — it was a long time ago that they started to speak about love affairs with older women. At that time, when you are 40, it is like now when you are 60. Because the population is becoming older and older. It was always in the humanity. Maybe cinema, because it is a picture, the director or the cinematographic industry thinks you [need] sex appeal. So they put a beautiful face, a beautiful body, and they forget the true feelings. As you said, you can be in love like Romeo and Juliet at 20 or 15, or at 80, like Henry Miller. I think because it’s a picture, the representation of love belongs to the beauty. The perfect body, perfect face. I think from the beginning of humanity, love affairs were always at every age.
MV: That's very true.
I agree! Were there any other specific films or pieces of literature, like you mention, that helped to shape your ideas about how real, legitimate love stories should be handled in art?
MV: One of the most important films for me was The Graduate. It is one of my favorite films because it shows things just how they should not be. What you have there, the older woman is shown as the predator, and she’s got him in her clutches. And he’s this young guy, he’s still a virgin, she deflowers him. It’s all these stereotypes. And even as a teenager — this is the kind of movie that made me want to live and made me want to make films — but it’s also to show you that Ms. Robinson is the exact antithesis of what Caroline is in the film. It’s also why I included a tiny little reference in the film, pulling out the stocking.
Yes! I noticed that.
FA: Do you remember this movie, an American movie, about a love affair with an older woman, Terms of Endearment? I remember this movie. That was no problem. Do you remember the lady? [Shirley MacLaine]. With Jack Nicholson. It was strong because you believed this love affair between them and in the middle of the drama —
MV: Who was the director? James L. Brooks?
FA: So maybe, for [those] reasons ... it succeeded. Sometimes you have that kind of movie. It's not all the rubbish things that pass. You had Romeo and Juliet once. But you try to do the same, it's very difficult.
With so many love stories in film, very few of them that I've seen are actually about marriage. Usually they're about people who meet and fall in love for the first time.
FA: We have this sentence in French: "Happy people have no story." It’s true. You are not going to speak about happiness.
MV: But it was important for me to speak about this marriage. I thought it was really important to show in a film, what do you do when you’ve lived together as a couple for such a long time? How do you survive those moments that are difficult? The times when you come out of sync with each other, and you’re just not on the same wavelength. But then manage to bring yourselves back into sync with each other. So I thought it was important to show that.
But do you both think there are so few movies about marriage because of that saying, "Happy people have no story"?
FA: No, because there's [also a saying], "A comedy finishing with a wedding is a tragedy starting."
FA: Excuse me. That is the French mentality.
Even though this movie is very authentic and grounded in reality, it's still a very enchanting movie, and delightful, romantic love story...
FA: When you are the spectator in the dark room, every time, a piece of life is caught. You never know. It’s not like the classic movie where part of the pleasure is knowing where it’s going to end. You never know. You are waiting for something, but you never know. [The viewers] don’t even know what they want. Because some people want that she stays with the lover, other people want her to go back to the husband. So, I think it's a movie made by that flash. You are in front of reality in real life. You have no time to think about reality. Reality, at the same time, for me, doesn’t exist. Reality is a vision that you have.
MV: I think it’s also Fanny's presence in the film that adds to that sensation you have of it being real but enchanting.
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Heavy rockers Avenged Sevenfold were triple winners at the Revolver Golden Gods Awards on Wednesday night (23Apr14). The band's stars Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance were jointly awarded the Dimebag Darrell Best Guitarist prize, while Arin Illejay was named Best Drummer. The group was also awarded the title for Most Devoted Fans.
Meanwhile, Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme was declared Best Vocalist, Rob Zombie took Best Live Band, Deep Purple claimed the Comeback of the Year accolade and Twelve Foot Ninja earned recognition as Best New Talent.
Five Finger Death Punch were two-time winners, scoring the Paul Gray Best Bassist Award for Chris Kael and Song of the Year for Lift Me Up.
It was also a big night for Ozzy Osbourne and his Black Sabbath bandmates, who celebrated their comeback with the Album of the Year honour for 13.
Joan Jett made awards history as the first female recipient of the Golden God Award and Axl Rose was feted with the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award.
Rose also treated guests to a special reunion performance with his former Guns N' Roses pal Duff McKagan, who recently stepped in to the line-up to temporarily replace bassist Tommy Stinson, while another highlight of the heavy metal awards show came from Slayer, who delivered a surprise three-song set to open the ceremony. They also debuted new track Implode, their first new material since the death of guitarist Jeff Hanneman last year (13).
A Grammy Award handed to rock veterans The Who in honour of their stellar career is to go up for auction later this month (Apr14). The lifetime achievement prize was presented to the My Generation hitmakers in 2001 to mark their "outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording".
The trophy is due to be auctioned online via Nate D. Sanders on 29 April (14). Bidding starts at $17,500 (£10,937).