Wednesday, December 11, 2013
I first saw The Drowsy Chaperone when it made it's US premiere at The Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles way back in 2005. With the original cast and Bob Martin in the role of Man In The Chair, he also co wrote the play with Don McKellar. The music is by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison. It had been playing at theatres in Canada since 1998 but some how took almost 10 years to come to the United States.
I've only ever seen it the once, but I still remember how much I adored it. So when Geoffrey Rush mentioned in passing, during an interview for his new film THE BOOK THIEF, that he was working on a film version I nearly swooned. I will definitely be dogging whichever studio is doing it to see the earliest possible screening.
THE DROWSY CHAPERONE begins with a man in a chair listening to his favorite cast album. Slowly the stage around him becomes the Broadway stage of this 1928 musical. Throughout the play the man in the chair narrates the mad cap goings on.
Geoffrey Rush was in the original Australian cast in 2010, I feel for them having to wait an additional 5 years after us to get this play, as the Man In The Chair. He is now working on a film and I have heard some noise about Hugh Jackman signing on to play the Latin Lover character in the play within the play, pictured above from another production. I can totally see Jackman doing this character.
This is all the news I have at the moment but I'll keep updating as I get more info. In the mean time go see, the amazing film, THE BOOK THIEF. Maybe if Geoffrey gets lots of money from it we'll see THE DROWSY CHAPERONE that much quicker.
Based on various interviews it sounds like it will be going into production in early 2014. If you're not convinced here's a commercial for the New York production.
Monday, December 9, 2013
I was invited to celebrate the Blu-ray release of the 50th anniversary edition of Mary Poppins last week. A small group of us were invited to have tea with none other than Jane Banks herself, Karen Dotrice. She had so many great stories to share about the making of the film.
While she didn't recall ever having met the writer P.L. Travers, whom will soon be amazingly portray by Emma Thompson, in Saving Mr. Banks (theatrical release Dec. 20). She thought perhaps after seeing the new film that they kept her away as she was "challanging" to deal with. She did have many warm memories of Walt Disney and his kindness to her and her family. One particularly sweet story she told us was of being taken somewhere in Walt's private plane. She was uneasy about flying and he had the entire plane made out like a candy story for her and her sisters.
On the other hand, she regretted not having any nice tales to tell about her costar and often on screen brother Mathew Garber. Seems he was a bit of a handful. But, she kept those stories to herself.
She did share that she had prepared all her songs in England with a coach before coming to Los Angeles to film the movie. The coach had instructed her to sing them all in an operetta style which, to put it nicely, surprised everyone. Julie Andrews took her aside and retaught her all the songs. Can you imagine getting singing lessons from Julie Andrews. It must have been AMAZING! Then Julie also stood by her while she did her recordings with the live orchestra.
Finally, she gushed about Dick Van Dyke. How lovely he was. I dared asked about the famously terrible accent and she said that he was such a great performer you forgot in the moment that he was suppose to be putting on an accent. Then she side stepped into what a fun person he was to be around then and now (they're neighbors today).
We only had about an hour and a half with Karen, but I wish we could have sat there all day. She was really funny in her story telling. I got the feeling she could have gone on and on. I wish she had.
Special Features Included on Blu-ray
- INCLUDES BLU-RAY™, DVD AND DIGITAL COPY
- Spoon full of sugar
- Step in time
- Chim chim cher-ee
- DISNEY’S SONG SELECTION:
- “A Spoonful of Sugar”
- “Jolly Holiday”
- “I Love to Laugh”
- “Feed the Birds”
- “Chim Chim Cher-ee”
- “Step in Time”
- “Let’s Go Fly a Kite”
- SING-ALONG WITH THE MOVIE
- AUDIO COMMENTARY
- MARY POPPINS FROM PAGE TO STAGE
- STEP IN TIME
- DELETED SONG: CHIMPANZOO
- A MAGICAL MUSICAL REUNION FEATURING JULIE ANDREWS, DICK VAN DYKE AND RICHARD SHERMAN
- SUPERCALIFRAGILISTICEXPIALIDOCIOUS: THE MAKING OF MARY POPPINS
- THE GALA WORLD PREMIERE
- THE GALA WORLD PREMIERE PARTY
- “THE CAT THAT LOOKED AT A KING” FROM “MARY POPPINS OPENS THE DOOR” BY P.L TRAVERS
- MOVIE MAGIC
- DECONSTRUCTION OF A SCENE: JOLLY HOLLIDAY
- DECONSTRUCTION OF A SCENE: STEP IN TIME
- DICK VAN DYKE MAKE-UP TEST
- ORIGINAL THEATRICAL TEASER TRAILER
- ORIGINAL THEATRICAL TRAILER
- JULIE ANDREWS’ PREMIERE GREETING
- ORIGINAL TV SPOT #1
- ORIGINAL TV SPOT # 2
- 1966 RE-ISSUE TRAILER
- RE-ISSUE TRAILER #1
- 1973 RE-ISSUE TRAILER #2
The Blu-ray releases December 10th, just in time for all that pesky Christmas shopping!
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
I'm very excited to be invited by the Center Theatre Group to opening night of the 5 time Tony award winning musical Peter And The Starcatcher tonight at The Ahmanson Theatre , here in LA. It's a prequel to Peter Pan and is based on the book by Dave Berry and Ridley Pearson.
Here's the synopsis:
The imaginative play tells the tale of an orphan who climbs aboard the good ship Neverland and heads to a faraway place, where he finds love, friendship, and, ultimately, himself. “Peter and the Starcatcher” is comprised of a company of 12 actors playing more than a hundred unforgettable characters, all on a journey to answer the century-old question: How did Peter Pan become The Boy Who Never Grew Up?
All that and a musical too! Hoping it's a fun show. Based on the picture below, I think that's a pretty safe bet.
My Review- This was a really fun show. The set is minimalist and amusingly plays with what it has to represent rooms, door ways, the ocean, etc... I was under the impression this show was only for adults, because of the posters that read "A grown up prequel to Peter Pan" But that is incorrect. The play would be fun for kids too. I will say that like must children's film these days it has many references that would go over the kids heads, but as far as content it is totally appropriate for all audiences.
I can definitely recommend this as a great romp!
Ticket Prices: $20 - $110 (Ticket prices are subject to change.) Tickets are available by calling Center Theatre Group Audience Services at (213) 972-4400, in person at the Center Theatre Group box
office or online at www.CenterTheatreGroup.org. Hot Tix: $20 each may be purchased in advance or, subject to availability, on the day of performance at the box office (no checks). Groups: (213) 972-7231. Deaf community: Information & charge, TDD (213) 680-4017.
In celebration of "Talk Like a Pirate Day," save 50% on "Peter and the Starcatcher" tickets in the front mezzanine (Rows C-G) for performances from December 3-5, 2013 (including opening night) at the Ahmanson Theatre.
Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre
At the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown L.A. 90012
Thursday, November 21, 2013
|Harry Potter Costumes|
I begged my way into a free tour of the amazing Warner Brothers lot last week. This studio really puts a lot of effort into creating a broad range of experiences into their tour. This year marks their 90th anniversary and they're really kicking it into high gear.
|Dusenberg used in The Great Gatsby|
Warner Brothers is starting an end of the week contest where guests use the hashtag #wbfotofriday when they post their favorite pictures of the tour on Twitter, and then Warner Brothers picks their favorite to post on Fridays.
|Jack Lemon bust from the prop department|
For the month of November they are providing tours in French on Mondays and Wednesday at 3:45! Spanish tours run Monday-Friday at 12:15 PM and 3:15 PM.
|My Fair Lady Costumes|
There will also be free guest speakers from time to time. Check the Warner Brothers Website for details as they develop.
|A portrait of Humphrey Bogart for his last film, that was never made|
There are two types of tours. The VIP tour which is two hours and the deluxe tour that is 5 hours and takes you to the commissary for lunch. While you might think two hours is enough, you'd be wrong. There is so much to see and trying to squeeze it all in to two hour is impossible. I highly recommend the deluxe tour, and if they ever make a ten hour tour I'll recommend that one. Another great perk of the deluxe tour is eating in the commissary. It's great for star gazing.
|Jazz singer script|
Monday, November 18, 2013
Disney invited my family and I to see Frozen on the Disney Lot last weekend. It was a packed theatre of families with kids. What better way to spend a Saturday morning than watching cartoons with a bunch of children.
We started off strong with an animated short with classic Mickey and crew that had the whole audience howling with laughter. It relied on tried and true cartoon antics but with a fresh spin. I have to say I really enjoyed it.
I had heard that Frozen was based on the classic Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale The Snow Queen, but in truth it has almost nothing in common with that story. So I will not bother to compare it with that. On it's own Frozen was a great story of two sisters taking care of one another.
There is also a ridiculous snowman creature for comic relief, Olaf, who comes apart at regular intervals. He is so silly you can't help but laugh at his misadventures. Pretty much all the other characters are straight men for him.
The story is set in Scandinavia, though you only know that because of a lutefisk (fermented fish dish) joke spoken by a character using a German accent. I once asked Kenneth Branagh, during an interview for his show Wallander, why no one attempts Scandinavian accents and he told me it's a fear of sounding like the Muppets Swedish chef. Which it's hard to argue with.
I highly recommend this film. My husband, 9 year old daughter, and I all thought it was really entertaining and that's a tricky thing to pull off. I really believe almost anyone would enjoy it. I believe if you see the 3D version you will get the preview short, we enjoyed so much, as well.
It opens on Thanksgiving, so it could be a fun one to go see while family is town visiting.
Thursday, November 14, 2013
TNT is premiering Mob City December 4. The story is set in LA in the mid 1940's, when mobster and the LAPD were at each other's throats. Based on the critically acclaimed book L.A. Noir: The Struggle for the Soul of America’s Most Seductive City, by John Buntin.
Mob City will air in two-hour blocks over three consecutive Wednesdays (Dec. 4, 11 and 18).
I had thought this was to be a series, but now it looks more like a mini series. Either way I'm sure to watch. Hoping it's so good they decide to develop it into a series...
The cast includes Jeffrey DeMunn (The Walking Dead, The Shawshank Redemption), Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead) and Ed Burns(Entourage), Neal McDonough (Captain America,Desperate Housewives), Gregory Itzin (24), Robert Knepper (Prison Break), Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes),Alexa Davalos (Clash of the Titans, The Mist) and Jeremy Luke (Don Jon).
Mob City centers on Det. Joe Teague (Bernthal), an ex-Marine who holds his cards close to his chest. Teague has been assigned to a new mob task force headed by Det. Hal Morrison (DeMunn). The task force is part of a crusade by Los Angeles Police Chief William Parker (McDonough) to free the city of criminals like Ben “Bugsy” Siegel (Burns) and Mickey Cohen (Luke), the ruthless king of the Los Angeles underworld. Parker also won’t hesitate to go after anyone from his own police force who sells out honor and duty for the sake of a big payout.
Friday, November 8, 2013
The Doctor Who 50th anniversary palooza is coming to BBC America beginning November 18th and will climax with the November 23rd global simulcast of Doctor Who: The Day of The Doctor. I am only a lowly 3 doctorgenarian and I'm beyond excited for this week of celebrating Doctor Who's 50th anniversary I can only imagine those fans who have been watching since the beginnings level of enthusiasm!
The celebration will begin November 18th with the US premiere of an all-new special, Doctor Who: Tales from the TARDIS, featuring the series’ actors and producers sharing their experiences and memories of the world’s longest-running sci-fi show. The special features exclusive interviews with principal cast members from the show’s 50-year history, including actors who have played the Doctor: Matt Smith, David Tennant, Tom Baker, and Peter Davison, actors who have played companions: Jenna Coleman, Karen Gillan, Freema Agyeman, and William Russell, as well as the current lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat. The discussion includes how the actors got cast, how the roles changed their lives, how a ‘regeneration’ is recorded, and how filming the show in the 60's compares to today.
Tales of the Tardis will be followed by The Science of Doctor Who with Brian Cox another US premiere. Exploring the universe of the world’s favorite Time Lord when Brian Cox takes the audience on a journey into the wonderful universe of Doctor Who, with the help of celebrity guests. In this exclusively recorded special from the lecture theatre of the Royal Institution of Great Britain, Brian reveals the science behind the spectacle and explains the physics that allows Doctor Who to travel through space and time. Fun, but filled with real science, it’s a special night for Who fans and anyone with a thirst for understanding.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 20
Doctor Who – The Tenth Doctor Marathon
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 21
Doctor Who – The Eleventh Doctor Marathon Part IThe Eleventh Doctor – Matt Smith
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 22
Doctor Who – The Eleventh Doctor Marathon Part 2
The Eleventh Doctor – Matt Smith
Followed by an all-new special, Doctor Who Explained, explores the mysterious and two-hearted alien who is the Doctor. Through exclusive interviews with principal cast members from the show’s 50-year history, including actors who have played the Doctor: Matt Smith, David Tennant, Peter Davison, and Tom Baker as well as actors who have played companions: Jenna Coleman, Karen Gillan, and Freema Agyeman, viewers get an insight to what happens behind-the-scenes of the award-winning sci-fi show.
Then the US premiere of An Adventure in Space and Time, The origin story of Doctor Who the TV show. Written by Mark Gatiss, the BBC AMERICA co-production, the film stars David Bradley (the First Doctor, William Hartnell), Brian Cox (BBC Head of Drama, Sydney Newman), Jessica Raine (Producer, Verity Lambert) and Sacha Dhawan (Director, Waris Hussein). An unlikely trio of misfits set out to create a genre series that all ages would love. William ‘Bill’ Hartnell, displeased with his career, was presented with a chance to break out of the hard-man roles he’d become known for. And with the instincts of first time producer, Verity Lambert and first time director, Waris Hussein, the Doctor was born. As the success of the show grew, William went from unhappy curmudgeon to beloved television star who relished his career resurgence and found a new lease on life. But all good things come to an end. How will Bill face leaving behind the part that has made him a hero to millions of children? And can the show survive without him? Journey back fifty years through space and time to witness the exciting beginning and untimely end of the First Doctor in this
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 23
Doctor Who – The Eleventh Doctor Marathon Part 3 – 1:00am – 2:00pm ET
The Eleventh Doctor – Matt Smith
Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor – Global Simulcast – 2:50pm ET
The centerpiece of BBC AMERICA’s celebrations is the global simulcast of Doctor Who’s 50thAnniversary special, Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor, written by Steven Moffat. The Doctors (Matt Smith and David Tennant) embark on their greatest adventure across space and time. In 2013, something terrible is awakening in London’s National Gallery; in 1562, a murderous plot is afoot in Elizabethan England; and somewhere in space an ancient battle reaches its devastating conclusion. All of reality is at stake as the Doctor’s own dangerous past comes back to haunt him. Starring Matt Smith, David Tennant, Jenna Coleman, with Billie Piper and John Hurt. Last seen as the Doctor on January 1, 2010, this will be the first time David Tennant has reprised his role as the Tenth Doctor. During his reign as the Time Lord, Tennant appeared in three seasons as well as several specials. He was first revealed as the Doctor in the 2005 season finale, The Parting of the Ways. Meanwhile Billie Piper, who played companion Rose Tyler for two seasons following the reboot in 2005, will appear in the show for the first time since featuring in David Tennant’s last episode, The End of Time in 2010. The special is directed by Nick Hurran, executive produced by Steven Moffat, Faith Penhale and produced by Marcus Wilson.
If by some disaster of the universe you miss it, not to worry they're rebroadcasting it later in the day. Encore primetime broadcast – 7:00pm ET.
Finally the U.S. premiere of The Graham Norton Show with guests Matt Smith and David Tennant – 10:00pm ET. Doctor Who stars Matt Smith and David Tennant make their first appearance together on BBC AMERICA’s hit talk show The Graham Norton Show. Emma Thompson, singer Robbie Williams and comedian Jimmy Carr will also be guests.
Please check your local listings for times
This just in!
Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor Trailer