If you’re lucky enough to have a big appetite and a loving group of family and friends for company, then eating shouldn’t be a problem for come holiday season. If you need a little encouragement, Breaking Badstar Bryan Cranston narrates the audiobook for You Have to F**king Eat.
The audiobook is available for just $1.95 at audible.com/eat, as Cranston reads the mock bedtime prose of Adam Mansbach (the scribe previously penned Go the F**k to Sleep and the audiobook version was narrated by Sam Jackson).
Cranston’s intimidating, calculating and ultimately seductive voice was one of the many elements that made Walter White such a memorable TV anti-hero, so throwing the actor into the audiobook world must have been second nature.
“This is a very funny book and my hope is that listeners will agree I can swear with just as much panache as Sam Jackson can,” said Cranston, who was also seen this year in the box-office hit Godzilla.
Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) stars in the latest version of the musical Annie, with Cameron Diazplaying Annie’s irascible caretaker Miss Hannigan and Jamie Foxx starring as mayoral candidate Will Stacks.
In director John Huston’s version of Annie, Miss Hannigan’s (Carol Burnett) venom was borne out of being a spinster. Diaz sees her Hannigan as a woman whose major flaw lies in her insecurity. It’s a parallel the actress sees in our culture’s fixation with social media:
“Hannigan looks to be validated not by the love of one man, but of millions of people and being famous. And I think that’s a syndrome – an epidemic in our culture and society – that we feel that we’re not validated if we’re not seen by millions of people. We balance our self worth on whether or not we are accepted by people through social media – how many likes you get, how many people follow you, if you don’t have that – then you’re really not worth anything.”
Cameron Diaz’s own relationship with social media is lukewarm at best:
“I don’t like social media – it’s not my instinct. I tried it and it’s just not my instinct to tell people what I’m doing and it’s not my instinct to look and see what other people are doing. I’m a very present, immediate person. I like to be where I’m at with the people that I’m with.”
To hear the audio version of Diaz’s complete answer, click on the media bar below.
Annie, co-starring Rose Byrne, opens Friday, December 19, 2014.
The Red Road: The Complete First Season comes out on DVD via Anchor Bay Entertainment on March 10.
Starring Jason Momoa (Game of Thrones) and Martin Henderson (Devil’s Knot, Smokin’ Aces), the six-episode series centers on two seemingly different men – an ex-con named Phillip (Momoa) and Harold (Henderson), a sheriff in Walpole, N.J. who’s simply trying to keep his family together.
Conflicts for both men arise thanks to the relationship between Harold’s daughter (Allie Gonino) and Phillip’s younger brother (Kiowa Gordon). When tragedy strikes, they are faced with a dire situation which can only lead to even more devastating repercussions. Lisa Bonet and Julianne Nicholson also star in the series.
The 2-disc DVD’s special features include:
Sundance on Set: The Red Road
Behind The Screen: The Red Road
The Red Road: Cast and Crew
The Red Road’s second season starts up in spring 2015 on SundanceTV.
Metalcore band Of Mice & Men, who earlier this year released their album Restoring Force, have added three new songs and an acoustic version of their single “Feels Like Forever” for Restoring Force: Full Circle. Coming out February 24, Restoring Force: Full Circlecomes in a deluxe double-disc, foil stamped digipack.
The three songs (“Broken Generation,” “Never Giving Up,” “Something To Hide”) and the acoustic take on “Feels Like Forever” were recorded during the fall in Southern California with producer David Bendeth (Paramore, Bring Me The Horizon).
Restoring Force continued the band’s growing momentum, as it peaked at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart and scored #1 spots on the Billboard Top Independent and Top Rock Album Charts.
The group’s arena tour with Linkin Park begins January 15 at the Amway Center (Orlando, FL). In February they play three dates at the Soundwave Festival and then embark on a European tour that begins March 11 in Paris (Machine Moulin Rouge). That leg of their tour ends April 4 (Academy/Manchester, UK).
One of my favorite moviegoing experiences this year was John Wick, an immersive and adrenaline filled action flick propelled byKeanu Reeves’ intense performance as a hitman with vengeance on his mind.
Lionsgate is releasing the feature, which also stars Adrianne Palicki, John Leguizamo, and Ian McShane, as a Blu-ray Combo pack, DVD, and On Demand February 3. For Digital HD viewers, John Wick comes out January 13.
Special Features Include:
“Don’t F*#% With John Wick” featurette
“Calling in the Cavalry” featurette
“Destiny of a Collective” featurette
“Assassin’s Code” featurette
“Red Circle” featurette
“NYC Noir” featurette
Audio Commentary with Filmmakers Chad Stahelski and David Leitch (Blu-ray only feature)
The film’s boilerplate summary is below:
When sadistic young thugs senselessly attack John Wick – a brilliantly lethal ex-assassin – they have no idea that they’ve just awakened the boogeyman. With New York City as his bullet-riddled playground, Wick embarks on a merciless rampage, hunting down his adversaries with the skill and ruthlessness that made him an underworld legend.
Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 is currently in development from CI Games (Lords of the Fallen) for a spring 2016 release. The title, the first AAA effort from CI Games, will be available for the PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. Steve Hart, senior producer of Rebellion’s Sniper Elite V2 and game developer (and former Marine) Paul B. Robinson, are part of Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3‘s creative team (the game will be utilizing CryEngine).
“The Sniper: Ghost Warrior franchise is one of the most popular in the CI games portfolio with over 5.5 million copies sold, so we’re investing a significant amount of effort into the third installment,” said Marek Tyminski, CEO of CI Games. “We’re fully committed to creating a AAA franchise that gamers can rely on for the ultimate first-person sniper experience.”
Set in Eastern Europe, gamers will play a sniper who’s caught amidst three warring factions. Open ended maps, coupled with a first-person shooter aesthetic and sandbox style gameplay are among the elements featured in Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3.
Golden State Warriors point guard (and Splash Brothers member) Stephen Curryhas teamed up with Day 6 Sports Group for the re-launch of Backyard Sports.
The digital game franchise debuted in 1997, and under its latest iteration it will be available on tablets and smartphones – with Curry serving as the face of the franchise.
“I grew up playing Backyard Sports, and having an opportunity to help bring it back to this generation of children is something I’m really thrilled about,” said Curry, whose sharpshooting skills has led the Warriors to NBA prominence.
“Re-launching a brand that was so iconic is an exciting step for us,” said Jim Wagner, CEO, Day 6 Sports Group. “And partnering with the NBA and Stephen Curry is the perfect way for us to engage with both our existing community of fans as well as the next generation of Backyard Sports players.”
Backyard Sports NBA Basketball is set for a spring 2015 release. For more info, please go to www.backyardsports.com.
Actress Katherine Waterston gives a scene stealing (and possibly star in the making) performance as Shasta Fay Hepworth, the missing ex-girlfriend of bumbling private eye Doc Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix) in Inherent Vice.
Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson and based on Thomas Pynchon’s 1970s set novel, Inherent Vice is now playing in New York and Los Angeles (it opens nationwide January 9).
For Waterston, whose father is actor Sam Waterston (The Newsroom, Law & Order), the film isn’t just a sprawling ode to Los Angeles noir – it’s also a love story:
“I just so immediately loved Doc – his spirit and relentless optimism despite sort of being confused all the time. I didn’t want to simply create some kind of cruel femme fatale – I wanted the audience to respect him on some level, to see why he would care about her beyond just sort of sexual attraction or some kind of manipulation or control she had over him in that way. And I wanted there to be a genuine connection there. That was really important to me, and I thought it was really important in the film.”
To prepare for the role, Waterston watched “loads” of movies, especially flicks which contained exterior shots of Los Angeles. Click on the media bar to hear Waterston talk about her DVD (or maybe it was Blu-ray?) expedition, which often led her to the Santa Monica, Ca. spot Cinefile Video.
On Thursday, December 11 an open house at Penguin Random House Audio Studio was held. Invitations went out to journalists, bloggers, librarians, and reading enthusiasts to attend the several hour event at the studio, located within the confines of California’s San Fernando Valley.
Participants were given a tour of the recording studios and the chance to listen to audiobook recordings conducted by narrators Cassandra Campbell(she read a section of Kate Walcott’s novel “A Touch of Stardust” which comes out February ’15) and Kirby Heyborne (he read a selection from Jennifer Niven’s upcoming YA title “All The Bright Places”).
In the following clip, Kirby Heyborne talks about the importance of being prepared as a narrator (for more info on Heyborne, please go to http://www.kirbyheyborne.com/)
Bestselling novelist Jonathan Kellerman was also on hand to sign copies of the audiobook version of Killer. In the clip below, Kellerman talks about the importance of audiobooks in regards to his work. He also praises actor John Rubinstein, who has narrated much of Kellerman’s audiobooks.
My longest conversation came with Cassandra Campbell (Twitter handle: @campbell_cass), and she talked about how her theater experience as well as being an avid reader helped shape her own narrating skills (Campbell was in the recording booth during the interview).
Having worked at Westwood One for nearly 15 years, I know a thing or two about the radio business. My comforts, however, lie in interviewing people and writing, so getting the chance to read a section of Gone Girl in the recording booth was a surreal and nerve wracking experience.
I stammered, hemmed, and hawed my way through two pages of Gillian Flynn’s razor sharp writing, and I was more than happy that, even though I did a poor job behind the mic, I actually gave it a shot.
After stuffing my face with a delicious lasagna cupcake (lunch was catered by Heirloom LA), I was homeward bound, realizing that listening to a good story, whether it’s in a recording booth or in the comforts of your car, is a beautiful thing.
For more info on Random House Audio, please go to their official site.
Now playing in New York and Los Angeles, Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles explores the turbulent, frustrating, yet ultimately innovating and inspiring career of one of cinema’s more talented auteurs.
Filmmaker Chuck Workman, who also directed the 2013 release What Is Cinema?, is a lifelong fan of Welles’work, and during our interview he talked about how his own perceptions of Welleschanged while making the documentary.
During the interview, Workman elaborate about the underrated and overlooked facets of Welles’talents (hence the doc’s “Magician” moniker). He was a filmmaker who was way ahead of his time, as Magician: The Astonising Life and Work of Orson Wellessuggests in compelling fashion.
For Welles fanatics, the movie also features rarely seen footage from such unfinished work as The Deep, Don Quixote, and The Other Side of the Wind, so if you think you’ve had your fill of the man who played Charles Foster Kane and Harry Lime – think again.
The film’s moniker may apply to you as well, since you had to edit and cull so much footage from his prolific career.
It didn’t take a lot of magic to pull it together in terms of his work because his work had a particular progression where you can see it getting better and better as he went on.
Even though Citizen Kane was so amazing, with the films that followed he used different kinds of filmmaking skills to convey deeper and deeper things. With Citizen Kane, he relied on his own company of actors and himself. But eventually he learns how to work with Tony Perkins (TheTrial) and John Gielgud (Chimes at Midnight) and all sorts of other actors. That changed the way he did things.
He learned how to edit because he didn’t have the facilities of Hollywood to do these big shots – so he had to do smaller shots and prep them in a certain way. He learned how to use sets in a really big way. This was something I could see immediately.
Did your vast editing experience help you prepare for crafting your documentary?
I knew I was going chronologically so I could take (the films) one at a time. And then I just went through each movie and picked the things I thought would work basically that would either demonstrate things I wanted to show or that I thought were the best parts of those movies.
And with doing trailers in my early life and also doing a lot of the montage stuff when I worked for the Oscars, I sort of knew what I was looking for. But I was always surprised. I really didn’t know the movies as well as I thought I did because I just assumed I knew every Welles film.
I had probably seen them all, but I hadn’t really looked at them in a way that you look at when you want to include them into another film.
When he passed away, the narrative was that Orson Welles was a tragic figure. But his work is so deep and so rich, that maybe it takes a little more analysis as far as changing that narrative.
That (narrative) hasn’t changed. You’re saying that. But I just hung up from another interview where (the interviewer said) “Isn’t it bad that his career went downhill after (Citizen Kane).” People still think that.
People still think that the fat guy from Touch of Evil or the one who’s making the wine commercial was Orson Welles. And he was a tragic figure. I worked with two or three scholars and critics that knew a lot about Welles frankly. One of them said when he saw the film – “I’m so glad that you didn’t make him a tragic figure. You made him a figure who had all this accomplishment.”
We’re all tragic figures (laughs). We never get what we want, you know? You can I tell each other things we didn’t get that we wanted. But (Orson Welles) kept going and going and he kept getting better.
When he was out (in Los Angeles), he would go to Ma Maison (restaurant). There were all these stories about his weight (and) how he couldn’t get into his car. He would go around to the back of Ma Maison and get dessert. That he smoked too many cigars and he didn’t finish movies.
It’s a shame that he got this bad rap and yet it’s something we have here in Hollywood. That’s the game – you kind of look for gossip in other people.
Another problem is you can’t find the movies. You can’t see Chimes at Midnight, which he thinks is his best film, because it’s tied up in rights problems. You can’t see his last film (The Other Side of the Wind) because it wasn’t finished. Hopefully it will be finished soon.
Are you encouraged that Frank Marshall and Peter Bogdanovich are working to get The Other Side of the Wind finished?
Oh I don’t know – it may be just a curiosity. Most people have seen most of it but a lot of it wasn’t done even though they say they have most of it. So who knows how they’ll spin it?
Both Frank Marshall and Peter Bogdanovich certainly have a lot of integrity and they both worked with Orson Welles on The Other Side of the Wind. So they know what they’re doing. Of course it’s encouraging – it’s one more Orson Welles film.
What is your personal favorite Orson Welles film and why?
Well I thought Citizen Kane was my favorite and then he made all these other interesting films but they don’t (match up to) Citizen Kane. As I’m working on this film, I learned how much I love the later films. Like The Lady from Shanghai, Touch of Evil, Chimes at Midnight – and The Trial!
And F for Fake – when I teach, I’d always show F for Fake in class. These 19-year-old (students) – they really related to it. It’s a modern looking film.
So there’s many films – I can’t pick out a favorite. Five years ago, I could pick out Citizen Kane. Now, I’m not so sure. Each film added to his tool kit, so by the time he got to Chimes at Midnight, he really had it all together. He knew how to do battles, (work) with actors, work with sets, and editing. Everything came together with that film very deeply.
What do you think filmmakers can take from Orson Welles’ work?
If you’re looking at a career – people who are very interested in a strong career in Hollywood – forget it! He did what he wanted.
But people who are looking at an artist in this amazing art form of cinema, they may look at him and say, “that’s how you do it.” You hold on to what you want to do and try to get through each film as much as you can in terms of what you want to do and then move on to the next one.
In his case, because he was so much ahead of his time, he was dealing with an already set establishment. But there was no establishment to be Orson Welles. If you wanted be something special – be John Ford. Be William Wyler. They’re very special, but they’re not Orson Welles.
Orson Welles had his own vision how to use the technique of cinema. And also underneath that, he also had what he wanted to say in the world through his characters. So The Lady from Shanghai is not just a film noir with Rita Hayworth. It’s an extraordinary film where style and content come together in such a cool way. You get – you don’t have to say, ‘Well what are all those mirrors being shot about?’ They just seem right.