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Tag: Kenneth Branagh (1-4 of 4)

This Week on Stage: Kenneth Branagh's NYC debut and Tony weekend!

The weekend of the Tonys has finally arrived, and EW will be your shepherd through the entire night, with reports from the red carpet and Radio City Music Hall, and senior editor Thom Geier and myself hosting a live blog of the entire ceremony, beginning at 8 p.m. ET when it airs on CBS. Host Hugh Jackman must already have his eyes on a prize for next season when he returns for Jerusalem playwright Jez Butterworth’s three-person drama The River, and other starry productions are slowly finding homes for next season. Glenn Close, John Lithgow, and Martha Plimpton will star in Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance this fall at the Golden, James Earl Jones returns to Broadway in You Can’t Take it With You at the Longacre, and Bradley Cooper’s long-awaited return to Broadway in The Elephant Man is solid, with he and costars Patricia Clarkson and Alessandro Nivola assuming the Booth Theatre, a relatively intimate house, and perfect for B. Coop oglers as he will be largely unclothed for a large portion of the play. In other news, Blue star Julia Stiles returns to NYC in an Off-Broadway in a new work Off Broadway called Phoenix (her first production since tackling David Mamet’s Oleanna in 2009).

But never fear, EW’s Thom Geier is still checking out the latest productions amidst the Tony tornado; this week’s offerings include Kenneth Branagh (above) in his first-ever NYC stage appearance, Boardwalk Empire and Man of Steel star Michael Shannon tearing up Eugene Ionesco in Brooklyn, and veteran English actor Jim Dale (the voice behind the Harry Potter audiobooks) in a bioplay about his considerable theater career (click on the links below for full reviews): READ FULL STORY

The Bible is suddenly the hottest thing in Hollywood. What other scriptural tales could work as feature films?

Hollywood is — if nothing else — a land of over-stuffed bandwagons, and as studio suits begin to tire of super-sizing fairy tales, the latest micro-trend in “let’s-try-launching-this-kind-of-franchise” appears to be feature films based on the Bible.

The first, director Darren Aronofsky’s take on Noah, just recently wrapped filming in Iceland with Russell Crowe, Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly, and Anthony Hopkins. The rest of the Bible-based projects remain in some stage of development without an official greenlight, but many have A-list names hovering around them. According to Deadline, there are two possible films about Moses, with Ridley Scott and Steven Spielberg respectively circling the directors’ chairs. Will Smith is reportedly eyeing the story of Cain & Abel as his directorial debut. Paul Verhoeven is developing a biopic about Jesus, based on Verhoeven’s own book and research, that strips away all the miracles of the New Testament. Most recently, screenwriter Vera Blasi (Woman on Top) penned a script about Pontius Pilate — i.e. the man who condemned Jesus Christ to the cross — that was just snapped up by Warner Bros.

But that is just scratching the surface when it comes to Bible stories that are ready-made for the big screen, especially in the Old Testament. In the interest of providing Hollywood with even more half-baked ideas, my colleague Darren Franich and I humbly suggest the following ecclesiastical tales as sure-fire potential box office blockbusters:  READ FULL STORY

Brush up your Shakespeare -- it's the Bard's 448th birthday

For someone who’s been around for nearly half a millennium, William Shakespeare certainly knows how to stay current. In honor of the Bard’s big day, we’ve assembled a few of our favorite more recent classics that have done justice to his work (and, no, Anonymous didn’t make the list). Check out the clips below and share your favorite Shakespearean takes on film in the comments below!

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Kenneth Branagh’s red carpet ritual, and more notes from a small island’s Oscar party

The Brits have brought us the Mini, Top Shop, and proper pints — but in Hollywood, their greatest contribution has been their talent. The stars came out Friday evening to honor their homeland’s 21 Oscar nominees at a pre-Oscar party hosted by British Consul-General Dame Barbara Hay at the British Consulate’s residence in Los Angeles.

U.K.-born acting nominees Kenneth Branagh, Janet McTeer, and Gary Oldman were all in attendance (along with Canadian nominee Christopher Plummer — yep, he is Canadian — Google it!), as well as behind-the-scenes talent including Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close director Stephen Daldry and The Iron Lady makeup artist Mark Coulier. And since no British event is complete without cucumber finger sandwiches and Victoria Beckham, those were on hand as well. READ FULL STORY

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