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.
Sex Tape, the comedy starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel as a married couple in trouble after a recorded intimate moment threatens to go viral, hits Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD on October 21 via Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
Both the DVD and Blu-ray editions come with two featurettes. “Capturing the Moment” has Diaz and Segel talk about the awkwardness of shooting the sex tape sequence in the film, and “Meet Hank Rosenbaum” has Hank Rosenbaum (Rob Lowe) giving viewers a tour of his Brentwood mansion, where they will also meet Ariel, his beloved German Shepherd.
The Sex Tape Blu-ray contains bloopers, deleted and extended scenes, and the featurette “Romance with Dr. Jenn Berman.” In the segment, the couples therapy expert gives audience members advice on various relationship topics including how to spice up one’s stale love life.
During the Sex Tape press conference, Jason Segel talks about the gratification of being a writer and occasionally coming up with an idea while taking a shower (Sex Tape’s original writer was Kate Angelo and Segel eventually came on board as a co-scribe).
“Gambit” was officially shot in 2012 by director Michael Hoffman (The Last Station, One Fine Day), so it’s a bit of a wonder that it took so long to make its way to Blu-ray. The bad news is Gambit (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 89 minutes, PG-13) has no special features to speak of. But if you’re a Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz fan who’s in the mood for a diverting enough comedic confection, Gambit doesn’t disappoint.
Harry Deane (Firth) is an art curator who’s sick of working for abusive media tycoon (and avid nudist) Lord Lionel Shabandar (Alan Rickman). Although he’s dressed in tailored suits and tries to be as gentlemanly as possible, Harry is a socially awkward fellow whose sense of reality is slightly skewed. With the aid of a longtime colleague (Tom Courtenay) and a straight talking rodeo queen (Cameron Diaz), Harry coordinates an art forgery scheme to bamboozle Lionel. The film is a remake of the 1966 original which featured Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine as the leads.
The picture’s main allure is the screenplay, which was penned by filmmakers Joel and Ethan Coen.Their trademark humor, which occasionally centers on the incongruity (and occasional danger) of mismatched relationships, is evident in Gambit, and all of the leads effectively play their roles to the hilt. Diaz, who’s usually front and center in most of her work, lets Rickman and Firth have most of the fun in this comedy of manners romp.
Gambit’s tone resembles the whimsy of the Coens’ previous films The Ladykillers and Intolerable Cruelty, and if you’re looking for any thematic layers or profundity, you’ve come to the wrong place. At its heart, Gambit is cotton candy comedy – sweet to the taste with a ton of empty calories.
A commentary from Michael Hoffman would have been welcome, but as a lightweight comedy that’s blessed with a brisk running time, Gambit is an engaging enough viewing experience.
Even though she’s one of the world’s top supermodels, Kate Upton must have felt a twinge of intimidation after landing a co-starring role in “The Other Woman.” With Cameron Diaz and Leslie Mann leading the way, Upton had to show she could bring something valuable to the table.
I watched the film several weeks ago, and one of the comedy’s greatest assets rests in the chemistry among the three actresses, as they play women who have all been cheated by an all too charming philanderer (“Game of Thrones” star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). Upton stars as a kind, nubile, and slightly spacey beauty who is the cheater’s latest girlfriend, with Mann chiming in as the cuckolded wife and Diaz playing an ex-mistress.
Upton’s most difficult scene was a beach scene which featured her in a sexy white bikini. “It was so amazing,” said Upton. “I’m so lucky. I didn’t know what to expect when I first came on set, and they opened their arms to me and made me feel really comfortable instantly.”
To listen to Upton talk about shooting “The Other Woman’s” bikini/beach sequence, click on the media bar below:
Directed by Nick Cassavetes (“Alpha Dog,” “The Notebook”), “The Other Woman” opens April 25.
“The Other Woman” centers on Kate, a sheltered Connecticut housewife (Leslie Mann) who plots revenge on her philandering husband Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). High powered exec Carly (Cameron Diaz) and nubile youngster Amber (Kate Upton), two ladies who were also seduced by Mark’s charms, join in on Kate’s quest to even the score.
Even though there’s enough comedy to be had, “The Other Woman” actually has its share of resonant moments, as the narrative delves into the growing friendship and bond among the three women. It may have its share of slapstick laughs and bathroom humor (Coster-Waldau has a sequence which made me queasy), but it’s the chemistry between Diaz and Mann which serves as the film’s shining star.
That chemistry was also evident during today’s press conference, as Leslie Mann and Cameron Diaz answered a reporter’s question on if they truly believed in the idea of a soul mate. “I guess Judd is my soul mate,” said Mann, who married director Judd Apatow back in 2007. “Because we have a lot of hard times, but it’s great at times too. Maybe that means he’s my soul mate? Maybe? I don’t know!”
Click on the audio below to hear Mann’s full answer to the question, and Diaz also chimes in to add that close friends and companions should also be considered soul mates:
“The Other Woman,” directed by Nick Cassavetes, opens nationwide April 25.