Getty Images/Vera Anderson
I was humming a tune from Robert Altman's Popeye, a terribly underrated feat of Robin Williams' comedy (and his first cinematic role), when I read the news of the actor's passing. Hastily, I diverted attention to the public sphere, rushing through the social media posts of friends, colleagues, and strangers, hoping for a taste of which Williams roles most touched the lives of each and every individual vocalizing grief. I knew there would be no shortage of reference to Williams' dramatic work — his Good Will Huntings and Dead Poets Societys — but of course my expectation was to find the principal focus on his comedy. More than an actor was Williams a comedian, whether he be playing on stage, on television, or on the big screen.
So it was an especially jarring turn to discover, when I launched back from the tributes to ingest more information, just how Williams died: authorities had begun calling the incident a suicide. Only for a moment, though, was I so rattled in surprise. Williams' endeavors with rehab for drugs and alcohol, both this summer and earlier on in the 2000s, were no secret. But more significant than this is the fact that nobody is or isn't "the type" to take his own life; nobody should be a more surprising victim of suicide than anybody else. Stigmas to the contrary are a large part of why depression is such a treacherous epidemic in our world and country.
Upon learning of Williams' death, some are bound to consider the dichotomy between the man we knew — the one who'd dress in drag and howl in a Scottish accent, who'd roar through the radio waves of the Pacific Rim — and the man in earnest. Some might doubt that the Williams we met as Mork, loved as Patch Adams, played with as Alan Parrish, and wished upon as the Genie, was anything whatsoever real. Anything more than "for the cameras."
It certaintly was. It was a Williams for us. From him.
Upon perusing Facebook and Twitter and speaking with friends, I found something you don't often see when a beloved actor dies: variety. Every other voice had a different Williams role to celebrate, ranging from the wacky Aladdin, the sweet and schmaltzy Hook, the stern and sincere The Birdcage, the dark and severe Insomnia, and the esoteric The Fisher King. The constants were affection and familiarity. More than a few folks who grew up in the '80s and '90s likened Williams to a distant family member, or even a surrogate father. Clearly, the man had fostered an incredibly, unprecedentedly intimate presence with a generation of film and television watchers.
And each of those "types" of Williams is just as valid as the next. As such, the "type" of Williams we — the public — all collectively know is as valid, as palpable, as real as anything that he might be beyond the limelight.
A friend of mine expressed consternation over the proper decorum in situations like these: is it tacky to expose your grief for a passing friend whom you've never met, who never knew you? It doesn't seem to be — although it would be tacky to presume that I know anything of what Williams might or could or should want, we can rest assured that he brought his talents, his hobbies, his self into the world in the way he did in the hopes of making us laugh. Few comedians, and even fewer actors, of our generation could be deemed so potently invested in the happiness and enjoyment of their audiences. In every one of his movies, Williams was giving us a very big, powerful, important part of him. That, and all the laughter that came with it, was for us. So it doesn't seem all that off base to think that we couldn't share every feeling of love and sorrow we might have about him.
Finally, we return to the question of authenticity — what about the man behind the laughter? The man so stricken with pain? The "real" Williams?
That's where the danger comes in: the thought that only the morose can be depressed, that anyone so capable of earning a laugh must be riding a permanent cloud nine. That Williams' humor was the result of a chemical reaction with celluloid, and would dissipate immediately upon production wrap. Williams, like many depressed men and women, was a man who liked to, maybe even lived to, joke. A man who could command any room, nail any impression, or knock out any punchline. Granted, Williams can probably do this a lot better than the vast majority of folks out there, depressed or otherwise. But he's not a unique breed. There is no discernible breed. Depression and the turmoils that come with it can inflict anyone: the funny, the mopey, the angry, the brawny, the silly, the sensitive. From your Sean Maguires to your Daniel Hillards.
It often takes a stride to learn that the depression living within any of these people can be real. And for those who suffer with the disease, it is just as difficult, if not more so, to understand that the rest of you — the funny, the sweet, the strong, the "Seize the day!", the "Beee yourself!", the "Hellooo!" — is, too, very much real. No matter which side of the equation you might be on, you have one more lesson here to learn from John Keating:
We did know the real Williams. We just didn't know every part of the real Williams. We might not have known the real pains, the tragedies that too many people face alone and don't have to. But we knew something just as real: his ability and his drive — no, his insistence — to make the world laugh. And yes, he made the world cry plenty. When he battled for a soul in Bicentennial Man or delivered special peace to a hospital of sick children in Patch Adams or dragged Matt Damon out of his own carnivorous guilt in Good Will Hunting, he made us cry. But the Williams that made us laugh... the one who splashed his face with pie frosting, babbled around Sweethaven in a feverish stupor, and doled out life lessons to a wannabe prince via obscenely anachronistic pop culture references... well, that's my real Williams. And he's just as real as anybody else's.
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Immortals star Joseph Morgan has married his actress fiancee Persia White. The British actor proposed to White in May (14) and the couple walked down the aisle on 5 July (14) during a ceremony in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
White wore a Vera Wang gown, while her beau donned a white tuxedo jacket with black lapel and black pants.
Gushing about his bride, Morgan tells People magazine, "She took my breath away."
The couple first met while co-starring on hit TV series The Vampire Diaries in 2011.
Warner Bros Pictures
Sandra Bullock's space thriller Gravity added to its trophy haul on Thursday (26Jun14) by winning five prizes at the annual Saturn Awards. The blockbuster was named Best Science Fiction Film, Bullock picked up Best Actress and Alfonso Cuaron was named Best Director, while the movie also took prizes in the editing and special/visual effects categories.
Spike Jonze's Her was also a top winner, taking Best Fantasy Film, Best Writing, and Best Supporting Actress for Scarlett Johansson.
Iron Man 3 was named Best Comic-to-film Motion Picture, while its stars Robert Downey, Jr. and Sir Ben Kingsley were hailed as Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor respectively.
In the TV categories, Hannibal and Revolution tied for the Best Network Television Series Release award. Hannibal star Mads Mikkelsen was named best TV actor and best TV actress went to Vera Farmiga for Bates Motel.
Supporting trophies went to Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) and Melissa McBride (The Walking Dead).
Malcolm McDowell was honoured with a lifetime achievement award in recognition of his five-decade career in Hollywood.
The annual ceremony celebrates the best of science fiction, fantasy and horror films.
The Fourth Annual Critics' Choice Television Awards were held Thursday night, with AMC's Breaking Bad, Netflix's Orange Is the New Black, and FX's Fargo coming away with the big wins. The awards, which are chosen by TV critics, have a knack for recognizing the programs and performances that are often overlooked by the other big television award shows. But do the slightly out-there nominees have a chance for gold when it comes to the Primetime Emmys? We've decided to predict the nominees and winners of this year's Emmys based on the winners of last nights Critics Choice Awards. The two award shows might have more winners in common than you would expect.
BEST DRAMA SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsThe Americans Breaking BadGame of Thrones The Good Wife Masters of Sex True Detective
Emmy PredictionsBreaking BadGame of ThronesThe Good WifeHouse of CardsMad MenTrue Detective
Last year's Emmy winner, Breaking Bad, is coming off a fantastic final season, so it's hard to reason how Vince Gilligan's masterwork won't win the night's big award yet again. But on the slim chance that Bad doesn't win (and we mean slim), True Detective is the most sensible alternative. We don't expect low profile dramas like Masters of Sex and The Americans to be recognized by the Emmys, and the hype on Downton Abbey has cooled of considerably this year. Another Emmy favorite, Homeland, had its worst season yet last year, freeing the category up for some new blood.
BEST COMEDY SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsThe Big Bang Theory Broad City Louie Orange Is the New Black Silicon Valley Veep
Emmy PredictionsThe Big Bang TheoryLouieModern FamilyOrange Is the New BlackParks and RecreationVeep
Freshman dramedy Orange Is the New Black will certainly get nominated at the Emmys, but we're doubtful that Netflix's prison series will win the top prize like it did at the Critics' Choice Awards, certainly not in a race that includes Modern Family. The juggernaut of a sitcom has won the category four times in a row, and there's nothing with enough buzz to stop it's warpath. Elsewhere, Critics' Choice nominees like Silicon Valley and Broad City are way off the Emmys radar, and don't stand a chance of getting nominated.
BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsBryan Cranston, Breaking Bad Hugh Dancy, Hannibal Freddie Highmore, Bates Motel Matthew McConaughey, True Detective Matthew Rhys, The Americans Michael Sheen, Masters of Sex
Emmy PredictionsBryan Cranston, Breaking BadJeff Daniels, The NewsroomJohn Hamm, Mad MenDamien Lewis, HomelandMatthew McConaughey, True DetectiveKevin Spacey, House of Cards
McConaughey came out on top at the Critic's Choice Awards, but despite his massive performance in True Detective, we're doubtful he will best Cranston at the Emmys. We're expecting the rest of the category's Emmy nominees to be rounded out with the usual suspects. While the critics recognized the great performances in Hannibal, The Americans, and Bates Motel, we're doubtful that any of those shows will make it to the Emmys this year, or any year for that matter.
BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Critics' Choice Awards Lizzy Caplan, Masters of Sex Vera Farmiga, Bates Motel Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black Keri Russell, The Americans Robin Wright, House of Cards
Emmy PredictionsClaire Danes, HomelandJulianna Margules, The Good WifeElisabeth Moss, Mad MenTatiana Maslany, Orphan BlackKerry Washington, ScandalRobin Wright, House of Cards
When the dust settles, we're expecting Tatiana Maslany to also win the Emmy in this category. At this point, her hype is insurmountable, and riots might break out if she doesn't leave the Nokia theater with something golden.
BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsLouis C.K., Louie Chris Messina, The Mindy Project Thomas Middleditch, Silicon Valley Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory Adam Scott, Parks and Recreation Robin Williams, The Crazy Ones
Emmy PredictionsDon Cheadle, House of LiesLouis C.K., LouieMatt LeBlanc, EpisodesJim Parsons, The Big Band TheoryAndy Samberg, Brooklyn Nine-NineRobin Williams, The Crazy Ones
The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons will likely walk home with both awards. In terms of the other nominations, there's no way Chris Messina or Thomas Middleditch have a chance at securing an Emmy nomination. We're also betting that Robin Williams gets nominated, due mostly due organization's usual affection for "veterans" ... or so the Emmys have an excuse to invite the actor to the show and hear his Genie voice.
BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsIlana Glazer, Broad City Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep Wendi McLendon-Covey, The Goldbergs Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation Amy Schumer, Inside Amy Schumer Emmy Rossum, Shameless
Emmy PredictionsZooey Deschanel, New GirlLena Dunham, GirlsEdie Falco, Nurse JackieJulia Louis-Dreyfus, VeepMelissa McCarthy, Mike & MollyAmy Poehler, Parks and RecreatonLouis-Dreyfus' foul-mouthed vice-prez will likely win the Emmy along with the Critics' Choice Award this year. As for the other nomination slots, Glazer and Schumer have no chance at getting nominated for Emmys. We're expecting the rest of the nomination list to be filled up with Emmys regulars like Melissa McCarthy and Edie Falco.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsJosh Charles, The Good Wife Walton Goggins, Justified Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad Peter Sarsgaard, The Killing Jon Voight, Ray Donovan Jeffrey Wright, Boardwalk Empire
Emmy PredictionsPeter Dinklage, Game of ThronesWalton Goggins, JustifiedAaron Paul, Breaking BadDean Norris, Breaking BadMandy Patinkin, HomelandJeffery Wright, Boardwalk Empire
Aaron Paul seems like a lock for the Emmys this year. The only person we could see upsetting what is basically destiny at this point is Peter Dinklage, who had a massive year on Game of Thrones. As for the other nominees, we are actually expecting the two award shows to stack up pretty similarly. Mandy Patinkin will definitely get an Emmy nod, while there might be enough space in the mix for long-snubbed Walton Goggins. One can dream, right?
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsChristine Baranski, The Good Wife Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad Annet Mahendru, The Americans Melissa McBride, The Walking Dead Maggie Siff, Sons of Anarchy Bellamy Young, Scandal
Emmy PredictionsChristine Baranski, The Good WifeEmilia Clarke, Game of ThronesAnna Gunn, Breaking BadChristina Hendricks, Mad MenMichelle Monaghan, True DetectiveMaggie Smith, Downton Abbey
While Anna Gunn didn't secure a Critics' Choice Award for the last season of Breaking Bad, we're betting she goes home with an Emmy this September. As for the other nominees, we don't expect Maggie Siff, Melissa McBride, and Annet Mahendru to get an Emmy nod, even though each actress certainly deserves the recognition.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsAndre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine Keith David, Enlisted Tony Hale, Veep Albert Tsai, Trophy Wife Christopher Evan Welch, Silicon Valley Jeremy Allen White, Shameless
Emmy PredictionsAndre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-NineJesse Tyler Ferguson, Modern FamilyEric Stonestreet, Modern FamilyTy Burrell, Modern FamilyTony Hale, VeepNick Offerman, Parks and RecreationAt this point, the supporting actor in a comedy category should be renamed the "Which Modern Family actor hasn't won in a while?" and that honor goes to Ferguson. Even though the Critics' Choice Awards don't feature a single nominee from ABC's dominant sitcom, expect at least three nominees from the show on Emmy night. Four if Ed O'Neil sneaks his way onto the bill. Also, kudos to the Critics Choice awards for nominating Albert Tsai for Trophy Wife. Bert will live in our hearts forever.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES
Critics' Choice AwardsMayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory Laverne Cox, Orange Is the New Black Kaley Cuoco, The Big Bang Theory Allison Janney, Mom Kate Mulgrew, Orange Is the New Black Merritt Wever, Nurse Jackie
Emmy PredictionsMayim Bialik, The Big Bang TheoryJulie Bowen, Modern FamilyAllison Janney, MomKate Mulgrew, Orange Is the New BlackSofia Vergara, Modern FamilyMerrit Weaver, Nurse Jackie
It might be crazy talk, but we think this category is Orange Is the New Black's best chance for its first Emmy. The show has such a dynamite supporting cast and heavy following that it may be able to crack the winner's circle in its first year of eligibility. We're thinking Kate Mulgrew has a good chance since Modern Family isn't nearly as dominant in this category as it is in Best Supporting Actor.
The Vampire Diaries star Sebastian Roche is a married man after exchanging vows with actress Alicia Hannah Kim at an historic castle in France. The couple wed in front of 50 close friends and family at Chateau Les Bouysses in Mercues on 31 May (14), with The Mummy actor Oded Fehr presiding over the ceremony.
Fehr tells People.com, "Picturesque rolling grape orchard hills, with a river lazily flowing between them. A 700-year-old castle. Local wine. Baguettes with brie that tastes of heaven. A group of strangers whom will forever be friends... All just a lead in to the most incredible wedding."
Roche, 49, admits he once feared that he and his new bride would never be more than friends, explaining, "I was smitten and knew she was 'the one'. I gave Alicia my number and she never called me! We stayed friends nonetheless and thank goodness (that) turned into something more two-and-a-half years ago. I proposed on the eve of her birthday in Topanga Canyon (in California) last year."
Roche was previously married to Oscar-nominated actress Vera Farmiga. They split in 2005 after eight years as husband and wife.
Pop star Ed Sheeran is celebrating after scoring his first U.K. number one single. The A Team hitmaker has previously enjoyed four top 10 hits from his debut album, +, but new song Sing is the first of his tracks to hit pole position in his native country.
The chart triumph comes days after Sheeran admitted he didn't want to release Sing as the initial offering from his forthcoming album X, revealing he was swayed to do so after receiving advice from his superstar pals Taylor Swift, Elton John and superproducer Pharrell Williams.
The song keeps Sam Smith's Stay With Me at number two, while last week's chart-topper, Secondcity's I Wanna Feel, drops two places to three.
In the U.K. albums chart, Smith lands a second week at the top with The Lonely Hour, ahead of Coldplay's Ghost Stories at two and Clean Bandit's New Eyes, which debuts at three.
There was also good news for Dame Vera Lynn - the beloved entertainer's new war songs release, titled The Ultimate Collection, enters the albums chart at 13, making her the oldest living artist to hit Britain's top 20 at the age of 97. The disc was released this week (ends08Jun14) to mark the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
Lynn became the darling of British troops during World War Two with her songs of hope. She also holds the record as the first and only artist over the age of 90 to reach number one on the U.K. album charts, thanks to her 2009 compilation album, We'll Meet Again: The Very Best of Vera Lynn.
Pop superstar Beyonce put on a show of unity with her sister Solange Knowles at a charity event in New York City on Tuesday night (03Jun14) just weeks after her headline-grabbing elevator fight with Jay Z. The Irreplaceable hitmaker appeared alongside her sister at the Chime for Change anniversary party in Manhattan.
The pair posed for pictures, hugging and smiling, in their first public appearance together since Solange's now notorious elevator bust-up with Beyonce's husband. Beyonce, who has been an advocate for the Gucci charity campaign since its inception last year (13), also made an impression at the event by announcing plans to donate $500,000 (£312,500) to the cause, according to WWD.com.
Chime for Change promotes education, health and justice for women worldwide.
Actress Sarah Paulson has learned she grabbed the role of Mistress Epps in 12 Years A Slave from Oscar nominee Vera Farmiga during a roundtable chat for The Hollywood Reporter. Publication editors brought the two stars together, along with Claire Danes, Julianna Margulies and Jessica Pare, for an indepth interview as part of their 'TV Drama Queens' issue, and Farmiga used the get together to let Paulson know they were once rivals.
As Paulson was talking about how she prepared to play the racist wife of Michael Fassbender's character Edwin Epps, the Up in the Air star revealed she fought hard for the same role. Farmiga said, "I wanted that role in 12 Years... (It) was a high-stakes role. Girl, I made a full-blown audition tape with hurdy-gurdies (instruments) playing in the background. The dance scene... remember?"
Shocked Paulson responded, "Oh my God. That's so extraordinary... I didn't know. "I auditioned with the same scene. I put my hair back in the tightest bun I could. I wore an outfit that was actually in my closet, which is terrifying. I did really want it; I did really go for it."
Beyonce has shown her support for sister Solange Knowles following her now notorious bust-up with Jay Z by posting pictures of the pair posing happily on her Instagram.com page.
The famous family hit headlines on Monday (12May14) when surveillance video from an elevator at the Standard Hotel in New York City appeared to show Solange hitting and kicking the 99 Problems hitmaker as they left an afterparty following the Met Gala on 5 May (14). The clip apparently shows Beyonce calmly watching the furore, before stepping between the pair.
Speculation has been rife about what prompted the outburst, with some reports suggesting there is now a rift between the sisters after Solange deleted all pictures of Beyonce from her Instagram page on Tuesday (13May14). However, the Crazy in Love hitmaker moved to end reports of a feud on Wednesday (14May14) by posting four candid snaps of the sisters having fun in the past.
One shot shows the pair sitting in the back of a vehicle, in another they are kicking their legs in the air in a field, and a third features them hugging onstage at the Coachella music festival in California last month (Apr14). Beyonce and Jay Z put on a united front on Monday night by sitting courtside at a basketball game between the Brooklyn Nets and Miami Heat in New York.