Monday Apr 27, 2015

Review: Broadway's 'Fun Home' is a deeply moving triumph

NEW YORK (AP) — The best commercial for a Broadway show this season isn't on TV. It's on Broadway itself, in the stunning, deeply moving "Fun Home." Three siblings ranging in age from 6 to 10, whose father runs a funeral home in Pennsylvania, perform a mock ad with a...
Read More

TV

Review: Broadway's 'Fun Home' is a deeply moving triumph
Monday Apr 27, 2015
Review: Broadway's 'Fun Home' is a deeply moving triumph

NEW YORK (AP) — The best commercial for a Broadway show this season isn't on TV. It's on Broadway itself, in the stunning, deeply moving "Fun Home." Three siblings ranging in age from 6 to 10, whose father runs a funeral home in Pennsylvania, perform a mock ad with a handwritten, Motown-flavored song that is sheer exuberance itself. "Our caskets/Are satin lined/And we got so many models guaranteed to blow your mind," the 10-year-old sings into a can of lemon Pledge acting as a microphone, while his sister boogies and his 6-year-old brother shimmies. "Come to the Fun Home/Ample parking down the street/Here at the Fun Home/Body prep that can't be beat," the three sing in a song that rhymes "satisfied" with "formaldehyde." Was it mentioned that they're dancing over and around a coffin? The song "Come to the Fun Home" is one of many highlights in a fresh musical that seems like an impossible sell on Broadway but hooks you instantly with its honesty and beauty. It's actually the best commercial for what Broadway can do. "Fun Home" is an adaptation from Alison Bechdel's graphic novel about growing up in a funeral home with a closeted gay dad. A closeted gay dad who has an untimely death. It should be theatrical suicide, and yet few shows are as moving, relatable and funny. The 100-minute musical — the title is an abbreviation for the business Bechdel's father runs — played for four months off-Broadway last year in a traditional proscenium stage with much of the same cast and opened Sunday at Circle in the Square Theatre with a seven-piece band. It has only gotten better in its theater-in-the-round format, with director Sam Gold using every inch of the stage and even the aisles. Furniture — sinks, doors and coffins — by designer David Zinn pops up from below the stage and sofas, a car and a bed are spun about. In a play that lingers on death, sometimes the show just has actors onstage amid empty spaces, the voids speaking volumes. (Zinn also nails the '70s costumes, from bowl cuts to awkward plaid to the ill-fitting pants.) "Fun Home," with a book and lyrics by Lisa Kron and music by Jeanine Tesori, switches between three Alison Bechdels — as a 9-year-old (Sydney Lucas), as a 19-year-old college student (Emily Skeggs) and at 43 (Beth Malone), the artist looking back. The adult Alison is our guide, walking like a ghost through her own past, sifting her memory for clues about her father's secrets. Her father, Bruce, is played by Michael Cerveris, who offers one of the most complex, heartbreaking performances of the season. Bruce is fussy, exacting, weak, loving, caring and very anxious, like a trapped animal. He has a simmering anger and also a deep romanticism and sometimes both fire at the same time. Cerveris manages to make him utterly sympathetic. Bruce's descent into suicidal depression happens as Alison is flowering into a woman and her realization that she's a lesbian. Lucas gets to sing "Ring of Keys" about her first longing for another woman, and Skeggs has the hysterically lovesick "Changing My Major," after her first sexual encounter. The adult Alison, Malone, sings "Telephone Wire," a wry lament about missed conversations with a parent that any child can relate to. And Judy Kuhn, who plays the mother, sings the heartbreaking "Days and Days" to her daughter, with the warning, "I didn't raise you to give away your days like me." There are sweeping love stories on Broadway this season and light comedies, too. That's fine, but make sure "Fun Home" is on your list as well. Rarely do you find a funeral home you're unhappy to leave. ___ Online: http://funhomebroadway.com ___ Mark Kennedy is at http://twitter.com/KennedyTwits Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Mark Kennedy from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival

At the upcoming Cannes Film Festival, chefs Yves Camdeborde, Christophe Dufau and Florent Ladeyn will produce their culinary reinterpretations of three cinematic masterpieces that have previously been nominated for the festival's highest award, the Palme d'Or.Nespresso will invite cinephiles at this year's Cannes Film Festival to a culinary experience that won't stray far from their passion. Gourmet dinners will be prepared by three popular chefs: Yves Camdeborde, Florent Ladeyn and Christophe Dufau have been tapped to head operation "Les chefs font leur cinéma" (Chefs Create Their Cinema). Childhood memories to savor Each chef was given carte blanche to select a film that marked the history of France's premiere festival. Chef Camdeborde, former judge on France's version of Master Chef and chef of the celebrated Comptoir du Relais Saint-Germain in Paris, reminisced on his childhood faith and drew inspiration from the Maurice Pialat film "Sous le soleil de Satan" ("Under the Sun of Satan"). He will transform the winner of 1987's top prize into dishes drawing on religious themes, such as a "poularde à la diable," a variation of chicken fra diavolo, and a "religieuse," a traditional French pastry of two cream filled choux whose name means "nun." Christophe Dufau's culinary creations grace the Michelin-starred Les Bacchanales restaurant in Vence, a village nestled in the hills between Nice and Antibes overlooking the Mediterranean. A passionate scuba diving enthusiast, the chef will present an ode to the sea with his offerings. He has chosen to pay homage to Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Louis Malle's "Le monde du silence" ("The Silent World"), winner of the Palme d'Or in 1956, through dishes like "langoustines drunk on coffee." And for his part, Florent Ladeyn, former finalist of France's version of Top Chef and the new champion of Northern French cuisine, has chosen to get back in touch with his wild youth and rebel spirit. François Truffaut's "Les 400 coups" ("The 400 Blows") is obviously dear to his heart. "What I looked for in this menu was to find that connection to childhood and to those memories you can bring to the kitchen. Creating emotions by recalling memories, reworking them, reinventing them, revisiting, for example, school cafeteria meals, as a nod to childhood," remarks the chef of l'Auberge du Vert Mont in Boeschepe, near the Belgian border in the north of France.  Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Players from politics, Hollywood mix it up at 'Nerd Prom'
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Players from politics, Hollywood mix it up at 'Nerd Prom'

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two secretaries of state, Tea Leoni and Madeleine Albright, arrived arm in arm Saturday as a wide mix of Hollywood and Washington players gathered for the national "Nerd Prom." The White House Correspondents' Association dinner has become a celebrity magnet, this year drawing some big names from television, sports and movies to rub shoulders with members of Congress and to hear the president speak. It has grown to become one of Washington's biggest events since its smaller origins in 1914 when journalists gathered to push for greater access to the president. Leoni, who plays the nation's chief diplomat on TV's "Madam Secretary," was part of an entourage with Albright, the first female secretary of state. The two joked that they trade notes on acting. They arrived with CBS' Bob Schieffer and Leoni's TV husband, Tim Daly. But Daly claimed Albright as his own. "She's my White House Correspondents' Dinner girlfriend," he said. "We met here, and we sat together one year, and now she's officially my date, so I'm a lucky guy." The wide array of celebrity guests included actors from other popular political dramas as well, including Kerry Washington and Darby Stanchfield from ABC's "Scandal." The mix of politicians, the media and Hollywood celebrities was surreal, Stanchfield said. "I've been taking notes, actually," she said. Alfre Woodard, who plays the president on NBC's "State of Affairs," said she enjoys hearing President Barack Obama's humor because "with him, it comes out of nowhere and it's very dry, and he does have a wicked sense of humor." Much of ABC's "Modern Family" cast also joined the party, along with would-be presidential candidate and reality TV star Donald Trump. Recent news was also the talk of the red carpet, including the TV special where Olympic athlete Bruce Jenner revealed on national television that he identifies as a woman. Laverne Cox, a transgender actress known for her role on "Orange is the New Black," said viewers who saw Jenner's story saw "a beautiful human being who cares deeply about their family, who's a parent and at 65 can no longer live a lie. "I think that's someone everyone can relate to," Cox said. "Stepping and living into our truths is something all of us must do." Politics was also on the mind for attendees as another presidential election approaches. Jane Fonda said she thinks it will be a tough campaign but that Hillary Clinton is strong, "and she can take it." Newswoman Katie Couric said she warned her husband the dinner would be a crazy mob scene "full of a lot of great people, a lot of self-important people, some celebrities, and it's fun." Gayle King of CBS This Morning said she doesn't understand why people call this the "nerd prom," though. "I'm thinking 'where are the nerds?'" she said. "These are people who are at the top of their game who really enjoy meeting other people. It's great." Olympians Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir, who have become popular commentators for NBC's Olympic coverage, joined the peacock network for the Washington event for the first time and walked carefully on the red carpet. Lipinski said she was honored to attend, and Weir said the entire spectacle was "pretty amazing." "We're just so excited to be here to celebrate being one with our media brothers and sisters and really celebrating the spirit of the night and the spirit of what we all do in entertaining and educating the world," Weir said. The dinner also drew attention on social media, though some pointed out news networks were ignoring protests that turned violent just 40 miles north in Baltimore where a man died in police custody. The featured performer for the night was Cecily Strong from "Saturday Night Live." She poked fun at many media organizations in the room, but when it came to NBC's Brian Williams, she stopped short and said she had "nothing — because I work for NBC." When he finally took the stage, Obama joked it was the night when "Washington celebrates itself. Somebody's got to do it." Later, Obama brought out comedian Keegan-Michael Key as his "anger translator" to wonder aloud why he had to be there at all. ___ AP Video's Lauri Neff contributed to this report. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Brett Zongker from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Confirmed network debuts for fall 2015
Saturday Apr 25, 2015
Confirmed network debuts for fall 2015

Of the dozens of projects pitched to US networks for the 2015-2016 season, a handful of them have already been given the green light. Starting in September, viewers will witness the return of Eva Longoria and "X-Files" as well as the arrival of Jennifer Lopez.US networks will officially announce, the week of May 11, which new shows will make up their programming for next season. NBC and Fox have already revealed a portion of their selections. Eva Longoria and Jennifer Lopez on NBC Fall 2015 is kicking off strong with the premieres of "Telenovela" and "Shades of Blue," two NBC series that will star Eva Longoria and Jennifer Lopez respectively. The former "Desperate Housewives" star will be back in front of the cameras as a soap opera star whose life off-screen is as tumultuous as on her show. J-Lo will play a single mother and detective recruited by the FBI for an anti-corruption taskforce. Opposite her, Ray Liotta will play a shady police chief. Rob Lowe, already star of the small screen, will have to deal with the end of the world in "Apocalypse Slough," a show about the last days of mankind. When they learn that a comet is on a collision course with Earth, a group of ordinary people hunker beneath the town of Slough to watch the end of the world on television. The network will also air "Emerald City," a project it had already attempted to premiere last year. Originally envisioned as a modern and dramatic reimagining of "The Wizard of Oz," the show will take 20-year-old Dorothy Gale and her K9 dog to a dark Oz, closer in feel to "Game of Thrones" than the land of the yellow brick road, where she will find herself at the heart of an epic battle. "X-Files" returns to Fox Like "Heroes," "Twin Peaks" and "Full House," "X-Files" is also readying its return to television. In the summer of 2016, agents Dana Scully and Fox Mulder will once again investigate paranormal activity in what is being billed as a six-episode event series. Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny will reprise their roles. After "Glee," Ryan Murphy will continue his collaboration with the network via "Scream Queens." Lea Michele, Jamie Lee Curtis, Emma Roberts and Abigail Breslin will star in this horror anthology set on a campus rocked by a wave of murders. Fox is also adding "Houdini and Doyle" to the program, a crime drama inspired by the real life friendship between the illusionist and the creator of Sherlock Holmes. For the sake of fiction, Harry Houdini and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle will team up to solve cases peppered with supernatural elements. David Shore, the creator of "House," will helm the 10-episode first season. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

US Olympic hero Bruce Jenner hailed for coming out as transgender
Saturday Apr 25, 2015
US Olympic hero Bruce Jenner hailed for coming out as transgender

US Olympic champion turned reality TV star Bruce Jenner won praise Saturday from celebrities and activists for revealing he is transitioning from male to female, ending long-running speculation he identifies as a woman.In a highly anticipated, two-hour television interview aired Friday -- hailed by transgender rights' campaigners and his own Kardashian-linked family -- the 65-year-old said he had wrestled with his sexual identity since he was a kid. "I've always been confused about my gender identity since I was this big," he told ABC's celebrity interviewer Diane Sawyer.  "Here I am, stuck -- and I hate the word -- (a) girl stuck in a guy's body... As of now I have all the male parts and all that kind of stuff." But asked point blank if he was a woman, Jenner said: "Yes. For all intents and purposes, I'm a woman." Speculation that the actor, race-car enthusiast and 1976 Montreal Summer Olympics decathlon gold medalist was undergoing a sex change has been rich fodder for supermarket tabloids for months. Supposed telltale signs, based on paparazzi photos from the streets of Los Angeles, include shaved limbs, long hair worn in a ponytail and what appears to be a sports bra under a T-shirt.   - 'I am not gay' -   Jenner said he identifies himself as "her," but not by a specific name. The ABC interviewer used "he" and "him" throughout, without causing any apparent discomfort for the former Olympian. He stressed the difference between gender identity and sexuality.  "I am not gay," Jenner said. "I am, as far as I know, heterosexual. I've always been with a woman, raising kids." Just before making the long-expected announcement, Jenner symbolically let his hair down. "Let's take the damn ponytail out," he told Sawyer, smiling. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights group GLAAD welcomed Jenner's announcement.  "Though Jenner's journey is one that is deeply personal, it is also one that will impact and inspire countless people around the world," GLAAD head Sarah Kate Ellis said. Singer Miley Cyrus gushed on Twitter: "I LOOOOVE LOOOVE LOOOVE Bruce Jenner!!!!!!!" Born outside New York in October 1949, thrice-married Jenner became an American sports hero when he set a world record with his Montreal decathlon victory. Leveraging his fame, he appeared on boxes of Wheaties, a popular American cereal known as "the breakfast of champions," then tried his hand as a movie actor, with less than stellar results. But it was through his marriage to the former Kris Kardashian that he once again became a household name in "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" in which he appeared as the sometimes bemused stepfather of her flamboyant daughters Kourtney, Kim and Khloe. The couple have two daughters of their own, but they obtained a divorce in December, 14 months after separating -- although he has been seen still wearing a wedding ring.   - Hero once again -   "Not only was I able to call him my husband for 25 years and father of my children, I am now able to call him my hero," Kris Jenner tweeted. Jenner's 89-year-old mother Esther hailed her son's announcement, comparing her pride to that when he won at the Olympics.  "I never thought I could be more proud of you. But I'm learning I can be," she wrote. Jenner's son Brandon tweeted simply: "Proud son," along with an Instagram picture of himself as a young boy perched on his smiling father's shoulders. Step-daughter Kim Kardashian trumpeted:  "Love is the courage to live the truest, best version of yourself. Bruce is love. I love you Bruce.#ProudDaughter." Her sister Khloe wrote: "Bruzer, I'm soooo proud of you! Dads really are heros." National Center for Transgender Equality advocacy group executive director Mara Keisling called Jenner's declaration "one of the most profound displays of bravery and courage I've seen." Jenner, clearly relieved to have finally come clean, said: "I'm saying goodbye to people's perceptions of me and who I am. "I'm not saying goodbye to me because this has always been me." Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Movies

Winehouse family criticizes 'misleading' movie about singer
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Winehouse family criticizes 'misleading' movie about singer

LONDON (AP) — The family of Amy Winehouse has criticized a documentary about the late singer that is due to have its premiere at next month's Cannes Film Festival. A statement issued Sunday by family spokesman Chris Goodman said director Asif Kapadia's "Amy" is "misleading and contains some basic untruths." The statement said the film suggested family members did too little to help the singer, who died in July 2011 at age 27 of accidental alcohol poisoning. The soul diva, whose 2006 album "Back to Black" won five Grammy Awards, had battled drug and alcohol abuse for years. The family statement said the movie did not reflect the "huge effort from all concerned to help Amy at all stages." "Fundamentally, the Winehouse family believes that the film does a disservice to individuals and families suffering from the complicated affliction of addiction," it said. The filmmakers said in a statement that they began work with "total objectivity" and the support of the Winehouse family. They said the documentary was the result of interviews with about 100 people who knew the singer, including "friends, family, former partners and members of the music industry that worked with her." Kapadia won wide acclaim with "Senna," a documentary about the late motor racing champion Ayrton Senna. "Amy" is due to screen out of competition at the May 13-24 Cannes festival. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival

At the upcoming Cannes Film Festival, chefs Yves Camdeborde, Christophe Dufau and Florent Ladeyn will produce their culinary reinterpretations of three cinematic masterpieces that have previously been nominated for the festival's highest award, the Palme d'Or.Nespresso will invite cinephiles at this year's Cannes Film Festival to a culinary experience that won't stray far from their passion. Gourmet dinners will be prepared by three popular chefs: Yves Camdeborde, Florent Ladeyn and Christophe Dufau have been tapped to head operation "Les chefs font leur cinéma" (Chefs Create Their Cinema). Childhood memories to savor Each chef was given carte blanche to select a film that marked the history of France's premiere festival. Chef Camdeborde, former judge on France's version of Master Chef and chef of the celebrated Comptoir du Relais Saint-Germain in Paris, reminisced on his childhood faith and drew inspiration from the Maurice Pialat film "Sous le soleil de Satan" ("Under the Sun of Satan"). He will transform the winner of 1987's top prize into dishes drawing on religious themes, such as a "poularde à la diable," a variation of chicken fra diavolo, and a "religieuse," a traditional French pastry of two cream filled choux whose name means "nun." Christophe Dufau's culinary creations grace the Michelin-starred Les Bacchanales restaurant in Vence, a village nestled in the hills between Nice and Antibes overlooking the Mediterranean. A passionate scuba diving enthusiast, the chef will present an ode to the sea with his offerings. He has chosen to pay homage to Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Louis Malle's "Le monde du silence" ("The Silent World"), winner of the Palme d'Or in 1956, through dishes like "langoustines drunk on coffee." And for his part, Florent Ladeyn, former finalist of France's version of Top Chef and the new champion of Northern French cuisine, has chosen to get back in touch with his wild youth and rebel spirit. François Truffaut's "Les 400 coups" ("The 400 Blows") is obviously dear to his heart. "What I looked for in this menu was to find that connection to childhood and to those memories you can bring to the kitchen. Creating emotions by recalling memories, reworking them, reinventing them, revisiting, for example, school cafeteria meals, as a nod to childhood," remarks the chef of l'Auberge du Vert Mont in Boeschepe, near the Belgian border in the north of France.  Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

'Furious 7' holds on to box office; 'Age of Ultron' looms
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
'Furious 7' holds on to box office; 'Age of Ultron' looms

NEW YORK (AP) — "Furious 7" enjoyed a victory lap over the weekend, becoming only the third film ever to make $1 billion internationally and leading the domestic box office for the fourth straight week. But the movie that's poised to topple the Universal juggernaut, Marvel's "The Avengers: Age of Ultron," revved up overseas with a massive $201.2 million debut. In North American theaters, "Furious 7" had enough left in the tank to top all films with an estimated $18.3 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. While the film has been a huge domestic hit, it's been even bigger abroad — particularly in China, where it's set a record with $323 million. "Furious 7," a film whose fate was once in doubt after the death of star Paul Walker midway through shooting, has now made $1.3 billion globally. Only two other films, both by James Cameron — "Avatar" and "Titanic" — have made more money internationally than "Furious 7." "Furious 7" has had little competition to challenge it throughout April. This weekend, the only new wide release was the Blake Lively fantasy romance "The Age of Adaline." The Lionsgate and Lakeshore Entertainment release came in third with $13.4 million. The Sony comedy "Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2" held up stronger than expected to take second place with $15.5 million in its second week. But the reign of "Furious 7" is effectively over now that the highly anticipated "Avengers" sequel is on the way. Though it doesn't open in North America until Thursday night, it debuted in 44 countries and territories this weekend. That represents about half of its international rollout. Disney said the film is exceeding the pace of 2012's "The Avengers" by 44 percent in the places it has opened. Joss Whedon's first installment of the superhero team-up franchise, starring Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson and many others, made $1.5 billion worldwide, good for third all-time. With two enormous blockbusters covering much of the globe, the summer movie season is ready to officially begin next weekend. In the meantime, a few smaller films carved out more limited releases. Russell Crowe's directorial debut, "The Water Diviner," opened in 320 locations with $1.3 million. The critically acclaimed indie science-fiction drama "Ex Machina" expanded to 1,255 screens in its second week of release and earned $5.4 million. ___ Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Rentrak. Where available, the latest international numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday. 1. "Furious 7," $18.3 million ($69.7 million international). 2. "Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2," $15.5 million ($5.3 million international). 3. "The Age of Adaline," $13.4 million ($1.3 million international). 4. "Home," $8.3 million ($13.7 million international). 5. "Unfriended," $6.2 million. 6. "Ex Machina," $5.4 million ($500,000 international). 7. "The Longest Ride," $4.4 million ($1.1 million international). 8. "Get Hard," $3.9 million. 9. "Monkey Kingdom," $3.5 million. 10. "Woman in Gold," $3.5 million. ___ Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at international theaters (excluding the U.S. and Canada), according to Rentrak: 1. "Avengers: Age of Ultron," $201.2 million. 2. "Furious 7," $69.7 million. 3. "The Left Ear," $27 million. 4. "Home," $13.7 million. 5. "Cinderella," $8.5 million. 6. "Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2," $5.3 million. 7. "Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection of Frieza," $3.8 million. 8. "Run All Night," $3.3 million. 9. "Insurgent: The Divergent Series," $1.5 million. 10. "The Age of Adaline," $1.3 million. ___ Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Jake Coyle from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

With new material, an intimate look at Kurt Cobain
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
With new material, an intimate look at Kurt Cobain

Twenty-one years after the music legend killed himself, a more intimate picture of Kurt Cobain has emerged with a new documentary revealing early recordings by the future Nirvana frontman."Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck" seeks to humanise Cobain from his now mythic status by offering unvarnished snapshots of his life along with interviews with those close to him, but ultimately it leaves room for viewers to make judgements. "I believe that this intimacy adds power to the film," said director Brett Morgen, who called the production an "immersive ride into Kurt's life." Cobain, consumed by heroin addiction and chronic depression, suddenly became a cultural icon in the early 1990s as the visceral sound of Nirvana turned the page on the previous decade's pop sounds. Cobain, who had thought about suicide since his childhood, shot himself in the head in April 1994 at his home in Seattle. He was 27. Morgen -- whose earlier works included 2012's "Crossfire Hurricane" about the Rolling Stones -- made the film with the blessing of Cobain's widow, fellow rocker Courtney Love, who handed the director 15 boxes of the singer-guitarist's belongings. Morgen said that Love did not have editorial control. But the famously volatile Love has voiced approval of the film, shedding tears at recent screenings and making a rare joint appearance at the Los Angeles premiere Wednesday night with the couple's 22-year-old daughter Frances Bean Cobain, with whom she has had a rocky relationship. Frances appears in one of the most haunting scenes of "Montage of Heck" as Cobain, high on heroin, holds her and Love -- also known for her drug use -- tries to cut the baby's hair. "He's between his love for his daughter and his addiction -- the struggle you see all in a one shot. It's an incredibly uncomfortable scene. It was authorised by Frances," Morgen told AFP on the sidelines of the film's Paris premiere. He said that Frances watched the footage in his office, where he left her with a box of tissues. "'You gave me a couple of hours with my father. That meant everything,'" he recalled her saying. - 'The most pure expressions' - Cobain rarely threw out his belongings and when Morgen sifted through the boxes, he found notebooks filled with song lyrics and drawings, as well as paintings, guitars and even shoes. Among the most striking findings were more than 100 cassette tapes recorded by the rocker, who grew up in the lumber town of Aberdeen, Washington, where his parents' divorce had a crushing effect on him. One tape reveals a young Cobain both experimenting with his own songwriting and covering earlier songs including the Beatles' "And I Love Her." "When I first heard it, I was in the storage facility and I had no prior knowledge of it. I put it on and I immediately felt like there was some sort of portal into his mind, like it was one of the most pure expressions of Kurt that I encountered -- maybe more than in most of his songs ," Morgen said. "I felt that within these mixtapes, all the different sides of Kurt were displayed -- the romanticism, the honesty, all of these different emotions." "Montage of Heck" will be accompanied by a soundtrack, in which Morgen has promised previously unreleased material. - 'Kitschy, funny, scary' - A month before his death, Cobain had tried to kill himself when Love and Frances joined him at a luxury hotel in Rome. Love said that Cobain had taken 67 Rohypnols, the relaxant drug often used to treat insomnia, because he suspected that she was having an affair. "I had said Kurt was very sensitive to critics and then she said that he was so sensitive that he could have been a psychic," Morgen said. "Montage of Heck" -- the title is an allusion to a Cobain mixtape -- took eight years to make as Morgen researched and produced the film and then sorted out potential legal issues. The film will come out in the coming months in cinemas around the world and will also be broadcast in the United States on HBO. Morgen believes that the film presents different facets of Cobain -- "kitschy, funny, scary." But ultimately it does not seek to address his death directly. "There's a lot of subtext in this film. But I ask the audience to conclude on their own," he said. Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Liotta recalls Scorsese discussion before 'Goodfellas' shoot
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Liotta recalls Scorsese discussion before 'Goodfellas' shoot

NEW YORK (AP) — The Tribeca Film Festival ended Saturday night with a bang — a special 25th anniversary screening of the Martin Scorsese gangster flick "Goodfellas." On the red carpet, star Ray Liotta recalled something Scorsese told him before filming began that made him believe he was going to be part of something special. "He said, 'I want to shoot this like a gangster,'" Liotta told The Associated Press. "'If I want to freeze frame, if I want to voice over, if I want to whatever ...'. And that's what he did. It gave him a lot liberty to just be him." That mindset paid off. Many regard the Oscar-nominated mob tale as more than just a great film of the genre, but also one of the greatest movies of all time. Scorsese used a compelling narrative with strong visuals married by a powerful rock soundtrack to reinvent the gangster film. "I don't know if he reinvented it as much as he just created his own version of it," Liotta said. Paul Sorvino, who portrayed Paulie, the mob capo that takes Liotta's Henry under his wing, thinks Scorsese went beyond reinventing the genre. "It's not even part of a genre; it's like tearing off that wall and taking a look inside to see what it really is," Sorvino said of the gritty depiction of life as a low-level mobster. The 76-year old actor expressed gratitude to have a part in the film. "It's part of the iconography of American film," Sorvino said. "It's one of the three or four greatest movies ever made, and if you get to do that in your career, you're pretty lucky." Based on the nonfiction best-seller "Wiseguy" written by Nicholas Pileggi, the story traces the life of Henry Hill — a mobster-turned-informant — from his childhood and life of petty crime to rise and fall in the underworld. The film also stars Robert De Niro as James "Jimmy The Gent" Conway. De Niro is one of the film festival's co-creators. "The fact that he helped put it together right after 9/11 and bring Tribeca back as well as New York — that was just honorable in itself. And to sustain it for so long now, it represents a great thing in movies, that's great for movies, and a great thing for the city," Liotta said. De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff founded the Tribeca Film Festival in 2002 as a means of stimulating the lower Manhattan neighborhood after the Sep. 11 attacks. But Lorraine Bracco, who played Henry's wife, Karen, thinks the festival did more than revitalize the city. "It's for the world to see that we're still standing strong," Bracco said. Scorsese couldn't make the screening because he was out of the country, but he recorded a message introducing the film to the audience at the Beacon Theatre. After the screening, outgoing "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart moderated a panel discussion with the cast. ___ Follow AP Entertainment producer John Carucci at http://www.twitter.com/jacarucci Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by John Carucci from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Events

Winehouse family criticizes 'misleading' movie about singer
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Winehouse family criticizes 'misleading' movie about singer

LONDON (AP) — The family of Amy Winehouse has criticized a documentary about the late singer that is due to have its premiere at next month's Cannes Film Festival. A statement issued Sunday by family spokesman Chris Goodman said director Asif Kapadia's "Amy" is "misleading and contains some basic untruths." The statement said the film suggested family members did too little to help the singer, who died in July 2011 at age 27 of accidental alcohol poisoning. The soul diva, whose 2006 album "Back to Black" won five Grammy Awards, had battled drug and alcohol abuse for years. The family statement said the movie did not reflect the "huge effort from all concerned to help Amy at all stages." "Fundamentally, the Winehouse family believes that the film does a disservice to individuals and families suffering from the complicated affliction of addiction," it said. The filmmakers said in a statement that they began work with "total objectivity" and the support of the Winehouse family. They said the documentary was the result of interviews with about 100 people who knew the singer, including "friends, family, former partners and members of the music industry that worked with her." Kapadia won wide acclaim with "Senna," a documentary about the late motor racing champion Ayrton Senna. "Amy" is due to screen out of competition at the May 13-24 Cannes festival. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival
Sunday Apr 26, 2015
Chefs Camdeborde, Dufau and Ladeyn inspired by the Cannes Film Festival

At the upcoming Cannes Film Festival, chefs Yves Camdeborde, Christophe Dufau and Florent Ladeyn will produce their culinary reinterpretations of three cinematic masterpieces that have previously been nominated for the festival's highest award, the Palme d'Or.Nespresso will invite cinephiles at this year's Cannes Film Festival to a culinary experience that won't stray far from their passion. Gourmet dinners will be prepared by three popular chefs: Yves Camdeborde, Florent Ladeyn and Christophe Dufau have been tapped to head operation "Les chefs font leur cinéma" (Chefs Create Their Cinema). Childhood memories to savor Each chef was given carte blanche to select a film that marked the history of France's premiere festival. Chef Camdeborde, former judge on France's version of Master Chef and chef of the celebrated Comptoir du Relais Saint-Germain in Paris, reminisced on his childhood faith and drew inspiration from the Maurice Pialat film "Sous le soleil de Satan" ("Under the Sun of Satan"). He will transform the winner of 1987's top prize into dishes drawing on religious themes, such as a "poularde à la diable," a variation of chicken fra diavolo, and a "religieuse," a traditional French pastry of two cream filled choux whose name means "nun." Christophe Dufau's culinary creations grace the Michelin-starred Les Bacchanales restaurant in Vence, a village nestled in the hills between Nice and Antibes overlooking the Mediterranean. A passionate scuba diving enthusiast, the chef will present an ode to the sea with his offerings. He has chosen to pay homage to Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Louis Malle's "Le monde du silence" ("The Silent World"), winner of the Palme d'Or in 1956, through dishes like "langoustines drunk on coffee." And for his part, Florent Ladeyn, former finalist of France's version of Top Chef and the new champion of Northern French cuisine, has chosen to get back in touch with his wild youth and rebel spirit. François Truffaut's "Les 400 coups" ("The 400 Blows") is obviously dear to his heart. "What I looked for in this menu was to find that connection to childhood and to those memories you can bring to the kitchen. Creating emotions by recalling memories, reworking them, reinventing them, revisiting, for example, school cafeteria meals, as a nod to childhood," remarks the chef of l'Auberge du Vert Mont in Boeschepe, near the Belgian border in the north of France.  Copyright AFP Relaxnews, 2015. This article was from AFP Relax News and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Political barbs, celebrity-gazing main course at DC dinner
Saturday Apr 25, 2015
Political barbs, celebrity-gazing main course at DC dinner

WASHINGTON (AP) — Get ready for a healthy dose of political barbs and celebrity-gazing in the nation' capital. If it's spring in Washington, it's time for the White House Correspondents' Association's annual dinner. President Barack Obama had it marked on his Saturday night schedule, so expect some verbal jabs aimed at his political rivals and the reporters who cover him. And maybe even a few at his own expense. Cecily Strong from "Saturday Night Live" was the professional hired to provide the laughs. Don't expect to find many of the politicians who are hoping to succeed Obama as president — most, it seems, are staying away from the gathering. The dinner helps fund scholarships and awards that recognize journalists. This year's award winners include: —Josh Lederman of The Associated Press and Jim Avila of ABC News, the Merriman Smith Award for presidential coverage under deadline pressure. —Peter Baker of The New York Times, the Aldo Beckman Award for repeated excellence in White House coverage. —The Edgar A. Poe Award, recognizing coverage of news of national or regional significance, to The Washington Post's Carol A. Leonnig and The Wall Street Journal team of Gary Fields, John R. Emshwiller, Rob Barry and Coulter Jones. Scott Horsley of National Public Radio received a special mention in the Beckman Award category for his coverage of White House policies and politics. Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Cleveland Play House wins Regional Theater Tony Award
Friday Apr 24, 2015
Cleveland Play House wins Regional Theater Tony Award

NEW YORK (AP) — This year's Regional Theater Tony Award will go to the Cleveland Play House as it embarks on its centennial season. The Play House was founded in 1915 and has entertained some 12 million people over 1,300 productions. Its alumni include Paul Newman, Tony Award-winner Joel Grey and "The Wizard of Oz" wicked witch Margaret Hamilton. "This is thrilling," said Laura Kepley, the artistic director of the Play House. "We're so proud and happy for the recognition. Obviously, it's in recognition of our great legacy and our forward-looking vision." Plays that have made their premiers at the Playhouse include Tennessee Williams' "You Touched Me"; Bertolt Brecht's "Mother Courage"; "The Pleasure of Honesty" by Luigi Pirandello; and Arthur Miller's "The Archbishop's Ceiling." The theater company has nurtured the Broadway-bound "A Night With Janis Joplin" and Pulitzer-prize winner Quiara Alegría Hudes. Next season it will offer a new play by Rajiv Joseph and a world premiere of a new Hudes piece for actors and musicians. In 2011, it moved into its new 500-seat home at Playhouse Square. It also runs two smaller venues, the Outcalt Theatre and the Helen. Kepley said the award is also a reflection of her city's revitalization and transformation. "The same collaborative spirit and hardworking spirit that fuels our region, is fueling us," she said. ___ Online: http://www.clevelandplayhouse.com Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Mark Kennedy from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Glenn Close, Lena Dunham strike emotional chord at event
Friday Apr 24, 2015
Glenn Close, Lena Dunham strike emotional chord at event

NEW YORK (AP) — Using her own family and Robin Williams as an example, a tearful Glenn Close urged some of the most powerful women in entertainment to help society shed its fear of those fighting mental illness in an emotional speech Friday at Variety's Power of Women luncheon. Close was among the honorees, who also included Kim Kardashian and Whoopi Goldberg. Close's speech was a tear-jerker for many in the crowd. She started off with a joke: "As an actress, I've terrified men, and I've certainly terrified children, but I have yet to terrify women. Contrary to the cliche, there's little that frightens us." But she went on to talk about how the specter of mental illness scares her most, and the need for greater awareness. Her sister has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, her nephew has schizo-affective disorder, and she recalled that her mother, who died two months ago, struggled with depression. As she fought through tears, Close said, "Whoopi, I feel Robin here today. He would be whispering in my ear, 'A couple of jokes would help right now.'" Williams, Close's co-star in "The World According to Garp," committed suicide last year. Referencing Williams and others who have killed themselves, Close said: "We have lost so many." She urged support of the mentally ill through her charity, Bring Change2Mind. Lena Dunham, who also was honored, talked about her experience as a rape survivor and how it led her to support GEMS, an organization that helps girls caught in the sex trafficking trade. She praised GEMS for championing those girls, and recalled when she too was in a vulnerable situation. "When I was raped, I felt powerless. I felt my value had been determined by someone else, someone who sent me the message that body was not my own my choices were meaningless," she said. "It took years to recognize my personal worth was not tied to my assault, that the voices telling me I deserved this were phantoms, they were liars." Kardashian choked up as she talked about her late father, famed attorney Robert Kardashian, who died of cancer. His death, she said, led her to become a supporter of the Children's Hospital in Los Angeles. Actress Rachel Weisz shared success stories from the Opportunity Network, which provides support for underprivileged backgrounds so they can get a college degree. Colbie Smulders received a special Samsung Galaxy Edge Award for her work with the Oceana group (Trisha Yearwood, Ava DuVernay and Emmy Rossum got separate Barbie honors). Goldberg, who was cited for her support of Figure Skating in Harlem, brought laughter to the event, noting it ran a bit long (three hours) and admitting it wasn't exactly her thing. "We don't need to talk about it — do it," she said. "Women are not good at helping each other, we talk (stuff) about women like that. "If you are in power, look around and see what's missing . pretty soon, it won't be about empowering women, it will be about empowering men." Copyright (2015) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. This article was written by Nekesa Mumbi Moody from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.