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Tag Archives | actors

SAG strike vote battle goes on

Despite the demands of the holiday season, the battle over the Screen Actors Guild’s upcoming strike authorization vote is picking up steam. Yesterday, an article on the Variety website touted the addition of more celebrities to the No SAG Strike petition; among the new signers George Lopez, Susan Sarandon, and Charlie Sheen. That petition drive kicked off three weeks ago and has accumulated 1,373 signatures as of Sunday. Meanwhile, over on the SAG website the number of actors who have signed the Statement of Support for a yes vote... Read More →

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“Yes Man” lands in first place at the Box Office

Jim Carrey won the battle of the superstars at the Box Office this weekend. Carrey’s comedy, “Yes Man” debuted as the most popular movie in the country, beating out Will Smith’s new melodrama, “Seven Pounds.” Both films opened last Friday. “Yes Man” managed to ring up an estimated $18 million at theaters across the nation. Not a great opening for a Carrey flick. Some analysts blame the similarities between this film and Carrey’s comedy hit, “Liar Liar.” Other film industry watchers say the bad weather is the reason Box Office... Read More →

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SAG Award nominees and the strike vote debate

Heath Ledger as the Joker gets SAG nomination. A lot of squabbling and bickering in the Screen Actors Guild this week over the upcoming strike authorization vote. The ballots are set to go out on January 2, 2009. Yesterday, for a while the debate over that vote was put aside to announce the nominees for the 15th Annual SAG Awards. The film about a face off between a Catholic old-school nun and a progressive priest, “Doubt” earned five nominations. “Milk” the story of San Francisco politician/gay activist Harvey Milk and... Read More →

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2008 Golden Globe Award nominees announced today

  The race for the 2008 Golden Globe Awards began today with the announcement of the nominees. Getting the most nominations on the film side, “Doubt”, “Frost/Nixon,” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.” Each movie was nominated in five categories by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” and “Frost/Nixon” were both nominated for best picture, best director, best actor, best screenplay, and best score. Surprisingly, “The Dark Knight,” which got a lot of awards buzz when it came out during the summer, only... Read More →

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Reese & Vince still hot at the Box Office

Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaugh are on a roll. Their romantic comedy movie, “Four Christmases,” is  number one at the Box Office for the second straight weekend. Moviegoers apparently are looking for laughs and romance wrapped up in the spirit of the holidays. “Four Christmases” earned an estimated $18 million this weekend, which brings the film’s domestic total to around $70 million. “Four Christmases” had a production budget in the $80 million range.  In second place, the teen vampire romance picture, “Twilight,” with an estimated $13 million, followed... Read More →

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Negotiations break down between SAG and the Producers

            Even with the help of a mediator, negotiations between the Screen Actors Guild and the producers imploded early this morning. SAG and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have been haggling over a contract for months. The meeting with federal mediator Juan Carlos Gonzalez was seen as a last ditch effort to avoid a strike by the union’s 120,000-plus members. SAG’s contract expired June 30, 2008. Today, SAG sent out a statement to the rank and file saying it had “…made difficult decisions and sacrifices... Read More →

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Movie deal: the Louis Armstrong story

Google image/ 1901- 1971 Oscar winning actor Forest Whitaker has signed on to play the great Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong in an upcoming film about the musician’s extraordinary life. Born on August 4, 1901, in a poor section of New Orleans called “The Battlefield,” Armstrong rose to fame as a singer and  trumpet virtuoso. Armstrong was the first important Jazz soloist and his style shaped and influenced that emerging new music form.  In his later years, Armstrong gained new fans by appearing in films and making his mark on the pop music scene. He reportedly died of... Read More →

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Legendary actor Paul Newman dies at 83

          1925-2008 Paul Leonard Newman has taken that final bow. Newman was an extraordinary man of many interests. A true Hollywood movie star for several decades, he still found time to be an activist, race car enthusiast, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. He died last night at his home in Connecticut, after a battle with cancer which he fought as privately as he could. The Silver Screen loved his stunningly handsome face and brilliant baby blues. And Newman could act! What a package. Newman became a movie star in the 1950s, but did not win the best actor... Read More →

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Actor Robert Wagner: “Pieces of My Heart”

Actor/producer Robert J. Wagner is talking about the strange death of Natalie Wood and a secret affair with another Hollywood actress in a new book. Wagner, who is 78, has written his memoirs with Scott Eyman. “Pieces of My Heart” hit bookstores earlier this month. Wagner will be out promoting the book at the 7th Annual West Hollywood Book Fair this coming Sunday. “Pieces of My Heart” is a stroll down memory lane for Wagner; from his childhood through some real life drama, to his acting career, and romances. For the first time, Wagner discloses his first love was Barbara Stanwyck. Still,... Read More →

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Movers & Shakers

  More kudos for Tony Kushner, the creator of “Angels in America.” The highly-acclaimed cable TV movie  version won a staggering 11 Emmy Awards in 2004. Kushner wrote the screenplay as well as the play that the movie is based on. It is about the AIDS crisis during the mid-1980s. Now, Kushner has been named as the first recipient for a new $200,000 playwright prize. Established by the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, this is the largest theater award in the country and one of the largest cash awards... Read More →

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Movie Deals

Oscar-winning actor Denzel Washington is about to make a leap into the future. Washington has signed on to star in “Book of Eli,” according to Variety. Washington reportedly will star as a lone hero in an apocalyptic future who must fight his way across America to bring society the knowledge that could be key to its redemption. The drama will be directed by Allen and Albert Hughes. It will be their first drama since “From Hell” in 2001.  Filming is set to get underway in January. By the way,... Read More →

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Movie & TV Deals

Coco Chanel 1883-1971 From book to movie The life and times of legendary fashion designer Coco Chanel are headed to the big screen. The film “Coco Avant Chanel” is set to start filming in Paris in mid-September and scheduled for release next year. Chanel is known for a classic style that has staying power. She introduced the perfume Chanel No.5 in 1922, her signature cardigan jacket in 1925, and the  “little black dress” in 1926 — a few of her fashion achievements that are still popular today. Also, Coco Chanel... Read More →

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F. Scott Fitzgerald & Brad Pitt

          F. Scott Fitzgerald                              Brad Pitt Author F. Scott Fitzgerald made some serious money, but had little real success as a screenwriter during his time in Hollywood. His only screen credit was for the drama “Three Comrades,” in 1938. Decades later, Fitzgerald’s storytelling is very much in demand in Tinseltown. A movie based on Fitzgerald’s 1922 short story, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” is coming out in December. It stars Brad Pitt as Benjamin Button who is born in his eighties and ages backwards!  Life gets complicated when... Read More →

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Two Bernies have left the Hollywood room

Comic/Actor Bernie Mac dies at the age of 50 There’s a little less laughter in Hollywood today. Actor/comedian Bernie Mac died in a Chicago hospital this morning, after what his publicist says were complications brought on by pneumonia. Cool Mac was an original. He could set up and deliver a joke with impeccable timing or crack-up an audience with just a look. Born into poverty on the tough South Side of Chicago, Bernard Jeffrey McCullough honed his stand-up skills at a young age.  He gained attention as an actor in small films... Read More →

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Movie Deals

Tyler Perry          Tobey Maguire A number of film deals announced this week. Here are some that caught my attention. Tyler Perry signs a new three-year first-look deal with Lionsgate for at least three more films. Lionsgate has distributed five Perry films starting with “Diary of a Mad Black Woman” in 2005. The prolific filmmaker has “The Family That Preys,” coming out in September. According to Lionsgate, Perry films have grossed nearly $250 million at the box office and sold more than 25 million units on... Read More →

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“The Dark Knight”: mo’ money, ticket deals & Bale’s arrest

“The Dark Knight” continues to surpass expectations. On Monday, the Batman sequel’s record-breaking domestic weekend box office got bumped up from $155 million to a mighty $158.3 million. “The Dark Knight” is racking up other records as well to go along with the biggest opening ever for a three-day weekend. Also on Monday, the film earned $24.6 million — that’s the best gross ever for a non-holiday Monday. “The Dark Knight” broke through the $200 million barrier on Tuesday and rung-up more than $18 million for screenings yesterday.... Read More →

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Big day in Hollywood

The Primetime TV Emmy nominations were announced this morning. The biggest surprise — a very impressive showing by basic cable programmers. In fact, the HBO presidential series, “John Adams” received the most nominations of any program with 23. Also, up for best drama series two first-year cable shows AMC’s “Mad Men,” and FX’s “Damages.” This is the first time cable has cracked the drama series category. “Mad Men” collected the most nominations of any drama with 16. “Damages” earned seven nominations including best actress for Glenn Close. A... Read More →

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SAG negotiators meet behind closed doors

The actors’ union national negotiating committee met in closed session today, according to the latest press release from SAG. The release says throughout the day the committee discussed “bargaining strategies.” Also in the release, SAG National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator, Doug Allen, tried to clear the air on the Guild’s reaction to the studios’ deal. “Our national negotiating committee did not, as has been erroneously reported, reject the AMPTP’s offer. Instead, we made a comprehensive counter proposal that adopted some of their proposals and offered alternatives on... Read More →

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Actors’ negotiations update

  One union contract is a done deal, but the second, and probably the most difficult, is still a cliffhanger. First — AFTRA. The waiting is over. Tonight, AFTRA announced the results of the balloting on the tentative primetime television offer from the producers. AFTRA negotiators reached the tentative agreement with the AMPTP on May 28. Last month, ballots were sent out to union members. AFTRA has 70, 000 members and claims 52, 000 of them are working actors. The ballots were due yesterday. Tonight, AFTRA revealed... Read More →

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Will Smith dusts competition in the July 4th box office race

  Google Image Will Smith’s new anti-superhero flick, “Hancock,” made a killing during the long 4th of July holiday weekend easily grabbing the number one spot at the box office. “Hancock” pulled in an estimated $107.3 million over the five and a half days. That’s the third biggest July opener and Smith’s eighth film in a row to open Stateside as number one. The brother is on a serious roll! The animated feature”Wall-E” took the number two spot, followed by the comic book inspired actioner “Wanted” in third... Read More →

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4th of July holiday break in the SAG talks

SAG negotiators met with AMPTP reps today. According to a SAG press release, the Guild asked a series of questions about the producers’ proposed package. Over the next several days, SAG negotiators will reportedly review and analyze the offer and ” prepare a response to management’s proposal.” No word yet, when these negotations will start up again. Meanwhile, on SAG’s website today, a statement from actor Sean Penn backing SAG’s decision to campaign against AFTRA’s tentative contract with the AMPTP. Penn, an AFTRA and SAG member,... Read More →

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