Divergent and fellow young-adult series The Hunger Games have a few things in common—enough things to confuse Screen Junkies, creators of the always-amusing Honest Trailers, into thinking that Divergent actually is The Hunger Games.
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Kate Hudson stopped by EW Radio’s “Bullseye” hour Tuesday to promote her new movie Wish I Was Here. Hosts Adam Markovitz, Tim Stack, and Tanner Stransky also got her chatting about so much more—dressing like a Game of Thrones Wildling last Halloween, why she gave up playing soccer, her mother Goldie Hawn’s best lines in Overboard, and her 10-year-old son Ryder’s friendship with Danny McBride. Listen to the full interview below. READ FULL STORY
In Hollywood, when big celebrities discover a splendid little documentary, they’re sometimes tempted to adapt it into a big-budget feature film—which may destroy what they loved about that little doc in the first place. But Ted Danson and Zach Galiafanakis aren’t your typical power-mad narcissists. They fell in love with Mistaken for Strangers, the poignant music doc about slacker Tom Berninger and his brother, Matt, who happens to be the lead singer of The National. Rather than turn it into a film, the two former Bored to Death co-stars took that pure story to the only place it could truly be told: the stage.
In a new Funny or Die video, the perfectly-cast Galifianakis talks about his dream to come to Broadway—after playing Shrek off-Broadway. READ FULL STORY
Dwayne Johnson has long been rumored to play a character in Warner Bros’ rapidly expanding DC movie universe. In a surprising revelation happening days before the yearly Casting Revelation Geek Orgy known as Comic-Con, Johnson appeared to confirm his participation in the DC franchise. “DC and I have been talking for a couple of years now,” said the Hercules star, clearly excited to talk about anything besides Hercules. “There’s a character out there that we’re gonna announce really soon, that I’m gonna play.” READ FULL STORY
Around 9 p.m. Saturday night in Los Angeles, a small but eager group stood in a building entrance lit only by Christmas lights and the flashlight of a lone security guard. A large, service-like elevator hit the ground floor, and soon, they slowly ascended to what’s called The Syrup Loft for an event seemingly ridiculous in theory, but executed with unbridled commitment: The Nicolas Cage Art Party Los Angeles.
It all started earlier this year. While working the night shift at Bed, Bath & Beyond, producer/curator Ezra Croft had an epiphany: He should hold a Nicolas Cage-themed art show.
“I was like, we’re going to take something that the Internet thinks is a little silly, but really has a good fan base, and we’re going to make real art out of it,” Croft said.
He put out feelers on Craigslist, hoping to gather submissions for the art show. The internet promptly imploded.
“The art started pouring in, and I thought oh my God, we hit gold here,” Croft explained. “It’s been a roller coaster ever since.” The first Nicolas Cage-themed art event took place in San Francisco’s Mission District on April 12, 2014. The works featured various mediums and styles, messages and tones, but all of which had Cage as their subject. Soon, he began planning a second show in Los Angeles.
What’s so fascinating about Cage? What warrants an entire art show dedicated to this particular actor? In Croft’s words, “He becomes the character; he tells the story. It might not be a classically polished, Hollywood movie, but it’s an interesting thing. He’s not afraid to make the less-than-popular decision. It’s cool to see that. It doesn’t always make for an amazing movie but he’s doing it. He’s a chameleon.”
Inside the eclectic loft, the works were divisive: Most were taking Cage seriously, while some brought popular Internet memes to the canvas. (Note: If you have not checked out Nicolas Cage on Google images lately, do yourself a favor.) The divisiveness with the art makes sense because with Cage, there is always the question of whether he is a good actor, a bad actor, a good actor who is self-aware and in on the joke, or all of the above.
One artist—who goes by Tormented Sugar, and whose “#IHeartSugar” was featured in the show—believes there’s a parallel between the variation within Cage himself and the art he inspires. “As an artist, Nicolas Cage is appealing for the fact that he can play as many variations of characters as there are possibilities to mix colors on a palette, which to me is almost infinite,” Sugar wrote in an email. “Nic Cage is to pop culture what an artist is to canvas.”
One artist to treat Cage more seriously is Steven Holliday, whose illustrator-made portrait, “The Cage,” depicts the actor in a muted palette, looking off canvas, seemingly deep in thought. Between Cage’s over-the-top acting style, which doesn’t always work, and a handful of not-so-great films he’s acted in, Cage has become humorous to some. But Holliday wanted to step away from that, portraying the other half of Cage: a respected actor.
“Every actor, every artist in general, has a bad day, some more than others, but we have to also remember that Nicolas Cage is an Academy Award-winning actor,” Holliday said. “It’s something that people don’t really remember. That’s one of the things that I wanted to bring to the serious portrait because I do view him as more of a serious actor who can also make fun of himself.”
[Note: Cage won an Academy Award in 1996 for Best Actor in Leaving Las Vegas.]
A goal for Croft was to play with Cage’s iconography without making fun of him. As a result, most of the artists featured in the show treated Cage with revery, not irony. That being said, there was quite a bit of humor in the show, indicated by a number of lighthearted pieces. Consider Cage as Sailor Moon, Elvis, and even as a great white shark (twice). Plus, in “It’s a Trap” by Sharon Welchel, Cage was depicted as Star Wars’ Luke, Leia, Han Solo, and Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Perhaps most interestingly, though, quite a few pieces depicted Cage as a religious entity of sorts. “The Lamentation of Saint Wickerman” by Anne Walker Farrell presented Cage as both Madonna and child, being attacked by bees, in the vein of Cage’s 2006 film, The Wicker Man. “Cameron Poe’s Last Supper” by Rebecca Gonsalves acted as a play on Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper,” with Cage’s face inserting itself into all of those present at the biblical event, even Christ himself.
Then there’s Rachel McPherson’s “Saint Nicholas of Cage” (see main image), which looks like your average portrait of a saint. The piece could almost pass in a church, if not for Cage’s signature look, but McPherson maintains that the piece should not be taken too seriously.
“One can’t read too much into my painting,” McPherson wrote in an email. “Nicolas Cage is indeed an icon and an interesting person, but ‘Saint Nicolas of Cage’ is a play on words and I felt that it gave me the imagery to create a striking painting.”
By no means do Croft or the artists involved hold Cage to a literally (keyword: literally) saint-like, or even God-like, esteem, but the imagery poses an interesting idea. One should take the domain name of the event’s website—www.nicolascageisgod.com—into account. Whether artists were taking Cage seriously, portraying him as a talented actor, or respectfully poking fun at some of his notoriously bad films, they were still elevating Cage, furthering his iconography and legend. (Yes, legend.)
The Nicolas Cage Art Party Los Angeles was a singular event, but it speaks to a greater fascination with Cage. For Croft, the fascination is in the development of Cage, as an actor and as a personality. “He’s had these legendary highs and lows,” Croft explained. “The evolution of Nicolas Cage is just really interesting because there’s not many other actors out there who can do that.”
Croft will next be hosting The Murray Affair: A Bill Murray Art Show on August 8 at SF Public Works.
This Thursday, Fifty Shades of Grey fans will get their first peek at the film when its trailer finally debuts. But much like its teaser, the full-length trailer won’t premiere on any website. Instead, it will debut on the Queen of Pop’s Instagram account, which prompts an important question: What does Beyoncé have to do with Fifty Shades of Grey?
So far, the only connection between Beyoncé and the film is her Instagram account, and the fact that she can be heard singing what sounds like a slowed down, sultry version of “Crazy In Love” at the end of the teaser. Could that be her only connection to the movie? It’s a possibility. But just in case it’s not, we’ve come up with a few more theories: READ FULL STORY
Have you seen Dawn of the Planet of the Apes yet? You should! If not, you should stop reading this right now, since this post is absolutely full of SPOILERS for the Apes prebootquel, including SPOILERS for stuff that didn’t actually wind up happening in Dawn but will wind up happening in the sequel. SPOILERS! READ FULL STORY
2014 will go down in history as the year Quentin Tarantino almost made The Hateful Eight.
The filmmaker was bullish about filming another western after his Oscar winning hit Django Unchained—but after a script leak and an ensuing lawsuit against Gawker, Tarantino seemed to cool on the idea. But at a live read of the Hateful Eight script, he announced that he was in the process of redrafting the screenplay–presumably adding in a character named Dick “The Gawker” Nenton, who suffers various horrific-but-hilarious limb-removal procedures. READ FULL STORY
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