Isabelle Huppert talks about taking the opposite view of ‘misogynistic’ director Paul Verhoeven and gracing the London stage for the first time in two decades in Phaedra(s).
There is little in the way of false modesty from Isabelle Huppert. It’s the day after the screening of Elle at the Cannes Film Festival and the Paul Verhoeven thriller has received rave reviews. It’s a sensational film adaptation of the novel Oh by Philippe Djian and sees Huppert plays a rape victim who turns the tables on her rapist. The actress is in nearly every scene of the movie and comments, “That’s why I was never bored watching it last night.”
It’s hard to argue with the sentiment, because anyone who has seen many of her 100-plus roles, since her debut in 1971, will attest that she’s usually beguiling. The magic of Huppert is that she seems to do so much by doing so little. Verhoeven raved, “She’s the best actress I’ve worked with. I just followed her instinct and let her do what she wanted.”
At the age of 63, the Paris-born star is having a vintage year. So it’s our luck that she seems to be everywhere over the next month. There is a cinematic retrospective of her work taking place in London at the Cine Lumiere and the Barbican with accompanying screen talks by the actress, and in June the Barbican Theatre is putting on Phaedra(s), Huppert’s latest theatrical performance.
It will be the first time in two decades that Huppert has graced the London stage. The play, directed by Polish auteur Krzysztof Warlikowski, has just had a two-month run in Paris; it is performed in French, so one can expect it to be a spectacle from the first night. Of course, Huppert thinks she’ll be great.
“I could do it in English, but that is not the agenda,” she chimes about the radical reconstruction of the Greek myth. “It’s not exactly Phaedra, it’s several different Phaedras, including Sarah Kane’s Phaedre’s Love and there are excerpts from the book Elizabeth Costello by JM Coetzee, as well as the text from Euripides.”
One imagines that even if the text was by a five-year-old, Huppert would bring something unique to the performance. She’s been at the top of her game for four decades. She won a Bafta as Most Promising Newcomer for her turn as the virginal Beatrice in The Lacemaker in 1977.
There is no other actress who could make Paul Verhoeven appear like a pussycat. The Dutch director has been described as a misogynist on countless occasions. After all, he’s famous for getting Sharon Stone to cross her legs in Basic Instinct and leaving nothing to the imagination in Showgirls; yet put Huppert in the picture and all of a sudden he makes a film that can only be described as classy, even one being referred to at Cannes as a “rape comedy”.
“You have all this talk of Verhoeven as a misogynist, but to me he’s the opposite,” says Huppert. “Ever since I discovered his first film, I saw Turkish Delight, the film was also mistaken at the time. It was taken as a semi-porno film and was released in a porno video and it only got one good review and that was in Charlie Hebdo, who said it was a masterpiece and he was a good director. So there has always been this blurred vision of him as a director.”
Huppert has recently become a cinema owner. “I’m going to digress because my son programmes a cinema I bought in Paris. It’s in the Rue Christine, and was called Action Christine and we’ve renamed it Cinema Christine 21.”
Recently, Huppert has been a lot more open about her family. She recently appeared on the cover of a magazine with Lolita Chammah, one of three children she has had with her husband of 34 years Ronald Chammah, a producer she met on the set of a 1980 Claude Chabrol movie. “She’s a good actress,” Huppert says of her daughter. “I’ll play her mother soon. I have a supporting role in a film she is making in Luxembourg. The movie talks a lot about involuntary transmission between parents and children.”
The bonds that tie a mother and daughter are also something that takes place on screen, as well as off for the actress. In another of her great roles this year, Huppert plays a woman who discovers there is life after separation in Things to Come, directed by Mia Hansen-Love. The French director once played Huppert’s daughter in Olivier Assayas’s 2000 drama Sentimental Destines.
“And now she becomes my mother,” chirps Huppert. Explaining, “A director is always a bit of a mother to an actress. You can be young and have an old soul, or old and be a young spirit.” The latter is a category that Huppert seems to fit perfectly.
“As an actress, I felt like during the film she has the power and she directed me a lot, maybe more than other directors on other occasions. She had this vision of this character being very open, and very light and instinctively, maybe my deep nature, would be to go for something darker, a little harsher.”
Indeed, there is a certain sang-froid that Huppert instills in her characters. They get their strength from the fact that nothing seems to phase them, they are able to overcome the worst horrors. It’s what made her so magnificent in Michael Haneke’s The Piano Teacher, a film that Elle has echoes of in its opening scene. The norm is that as soon as you see Huppert onscreen, you have the idea that her character will overcome all obstacles.
“Well, it’s normal that you think that,” says Huppert, when I ask her if she references her past roles when making contemporary films. “But for me, as an actress there is no link to what I’ve done previously. Because it’s me, you make the connection. People seem to think that you have connections with the roles you play, but the more I think about it, the more I realise I have nothing to do with those characters, those people are total foreigners to me.”
Madison Wolfe has never been afraid of the boogieman under her bed. While the young actress, 13, has starred in more than a few thrillers including Devil’s Due and the upcoming The Conjuring 2 (in theaters June 10), she remains unfazed and open to all opportunities presented to her.
Here are five things to know about The Conjuring 2’s lead Madison Wolfe:
1. She believes she’s been in touch with the supernatural.
“I’m never ever scared on set,” Wolfe tells PEOPLE about her experiences with playing and surrounding herself with chilling characters. “I was never haunted by my character, but I did do a lot of research on Janet and the Enfield Poltergeist before and during filming, actually.”
She adds of a particular situation that caught her off guard during pre-production: “When I was taping the auditions and my acting coach uploaded it on her computer, the date was 1979 and that is in the time period of Conjuring, and obviously we didn’t upload it in 1979, so that was pretty creepy.”
2. Congratulations are in order for the new graduate.
“I just graduated middle school, so I’m really looking forward to beginning high school because here [in New Orleans] high school is eighth grade,” she says. “It’s kind of weird.”
While most of her days are spent in a director’s chair rather than a plastic desk chair, she makes sure to never let herself fall behind in school. “I really keep up with my schoolwork and my parents help me so much with that,” says Wolfe. “It’s hard sometimes because I’ll be on set and I’ll be doing a really intense scene and I’ll have to go work on algebra while staying in character.”
3. There’s more than one Wolfe in town.
Wolfe and her younger sister, Meghan, 9, have played sisters twice onscreen – once on True Detective and another time in Trumbo – which happened to be “the coolest thing ever.”
“I think that we both learn from each other and we’re constantly taping and auditioning together, and it’s great because if I get an audition and I need someone to read with me or even have a question, she’s younger than me, but she’s amazing and an amazing actress,” says Wolfe.
4. She’s a budding writer and director.
“When I was younger, I used to write scripts and make my grandmother and my aunt play different characters, and eventually my aunt signed me up for Launch, which is an acting school here in New Orleans. I started taking classes and really fell in love with the craft,” says Wolfe. “It actually just began as an extracurricular activity, and I didn’t really expect anything out of it because I loved it, so it just turned into something amazing.”
5. And she has even more extracurricular activities outside of acting.
As if Wolfe doesn’t have enough on her plate, she also enjoys cheerleading, swimming, photography and horseback riding, which she’s “pretty good” at.
“I love really anything with animals,” says Wolfe, who has yet to get a horse of her own, but does have a dog named Molly.
“Really, I just like to hang with my friends because I’m away so often,” she adds of how she spends her, so to speak, “free” time. “The time that I spend with them is really valuable, and my family, also.”
It’s been over a decade since she was first engaged to Jude Law, but the torrid years that followed have not waned Sienna Miller’s feelings for her former beau.
As the Hollywood story goes, the Golden Globe nominee and her Alfie co-star were on the road to marriage in 2004, but a year after their Christmas engagement, Law publicly apologized to the actress after reports surfaced that he had been having an affair with his nanny. The couple subsequently split in 2006. The two tried to rekindle their romance in 2009, only to break up again by 2011.
Today, Miller says she doesn’t see her past beau “that much,” but told PORTER magazine, “I care about him enormously.”
Nearly a year ago, the star broke off her engagement to actor Tom Sturridge, whom she had been dating since 2011 and with whom she shares her only child, 3-year-old daughter Marlowe Sturridge. While the 34-year-old calls her past boyfriends, including Law and Sturridge, “a motley crew,” she does recognize the trait that ties them all together.
“I like intelligence,” she continued to the magazine. “It’s the only thing I’ve ever been attracted to. People who aren’t clever enough fall by the wayside. They’re a motley crew my ex-boyfriends, if you lined them up, it would be strange. I don’t care about that [looks], but you know, within limits… Someone staggeringly beautiful and thick is totally ugly to me. It sounds silly but I like bookish academics who are slightly odd, and borderline, you know, on the spectrum.”
In the meantime, the acclaimed star has a packed schedule of new films, one of which is taking her to New York City for the fall to live and raise her daughter. In regard to the possibility of having more children, Miller is definitely interested.
“I would love more,” she admitted to the magazine. “I’m suddenly feeling very broody for more babies, and my daughter’s desperate to have a sibling.”
In fact, Miller is more in tune with herself and her decisions after an intense recent round of therapy. According to the star, all the noise that was once in her head is now gone.
“I just got to a point where…I couldn’t dig myself out, I couldn’t make decisions, I felt pretty assaulted by life and not in control,” she revealed. “I think as you get older you have to really cultivate your mind and have a deep understanding of self, otherwise you just become lonely and isolated and unsatisfied and unfulfilled, and however your perfect little life looks on paper, there will be a sense of unfulfillment if you haven’t explored the nature, the very depths of who you are.”
Perhaps it’s that kind of courage that has caused co-star Bradley Cooper to describe her as a little Napoleon. “I stand up for myself,” she said. “That’s what he’s referring to.”
Kristen Stewart doesn’t need to put a label on her sexuality to know who she is.
The Café Society actress Kristen Stewart opens up about why she chooses to remain vague about her sexual orientation in the debut issue of Variety Magazine’s new redesigned format.
“Me not defining it right now is the whole basis of what I’m about,” she tells the mag. “If you don’t get it, I don’t have time for you.”
The actress, 26, says she’s been inspired by the way young people are able to love and view each other without labels.
“There’s acceptance that’s become really rampant and cool,” she said. “You don’t have to immediately know how to define yourself.”
Though she admits she struggled with the pressure to put a label on her herself while growing up, Stewart says she now believes in the idea of sexual fluidity.
“I had to have some answer about who I was. I felt this weird responsibility, because I didn’t want to seem fearful. But nothing seemed appropriate,” she explained. “So I was like ‘F—, how do I define that? I’m not going to.”
And while she says the LGBT movement is “so important” and something she wants to be involved in, she’s careful not to send the wrong message to people who might be struggling with their own sexuality.
“I didn’t want to be this example: it’s so easy,” she explains. “I don’t want it to seem like it was stupid for them to have a hard time.”
Related Link: View Full Production Notes for The Café Society Movie.
You’d assume someone would be jumping for joy to know that he is the highest-paid person in his industry (especially when that industry happens to be Hollywood). However, Robert Downey Jr. is more focused on his legacy and finding continued success as an actor at this point in his life.
In the latest issue of GQ Style, the 51-year-old actor opens up about getting older, wiser and understanding that monetary value has nothing to do with his creative value.
“First of all, could you imagine back in, let’s call it the golden era…Pacino’s and De Niro’s—do you think they would ever have allowed such a paltry discussion, reducing them to a monetary figure?” he asks the publication. “I have had and I have created some of the worst luck in the history of anybody in the public eye. And then there was five minutes there where I was batting a thousand.”
Despite what he may consider his “worst luck,” R.D.J. says he never sees anything as a failure. “I don’t want to talk about failure. I want to talk about moments of humility,” he explains. “Like when you feel suddenly sick and embarrassed but then you have to continue on to the next moment immediately in full view of others. Because it’s not failure if you just recognize, I fell short, and that’s okay.”
In order to prevent himself from falling short in the future, he looks at the roles he takes on with a keen eye. “Honestly, just as someone who loves movies, it’s: Can I be bothered to go see that movie if that guy makes it?” he tells GQ. “And I’m not saying that I only want to do quote-unquote popular mainstream movies. But life is short, and ultimately I’m in a service industry. As much as I exist to do anything else, I exist to create widgets of entertainment for other people to consume. And some people, that’s a big affront to their sensibilities, and I go, okay. End of the day, you are in a service industry, like Kirkland. It’s that simple.”
He continues, “When you’re on the outside looking in, for years, for decades, only a fool misplays [success] once he’s given a winning hand. And aside from certain devastating genetic weaknesses, I am not a fool.”
As for his advice for younger actors seeking the same path as him, he says, “If you always talk about all the cool stuff you’re gonna do, and you don’t understand why it hasn’t already happened for you, because, you know [snaps fingers]… The fumes of that will get you over the first hurdle, and nothing else. You must learn to put your nose to the grindstone for years and not look up, no matter how much rejection is heaped on you.”
He also expresses the power of appreciating what you have when you have it. Looking back on his role in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, he gets nostalgic. “When I watch that movie I say, ‘You were beautiful. And now…you just need to accept the fact that you’re going to age as gracefully as possible.'”
Black Widow never has it easy. Onscreen, Natasha Romanov has an agonizing backstory and is working like hell to do enough good to erase the red from her moral ledger, redeeming a history of bad deeds that we are only allowed to imagine with acts of heroism that defy belief.
Offscreen, much of what Scarlett Johansson’s character does is scrutinized through the lens of gender politics. As one of the few female protagonists in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (until recently), some view her not just as an individual character but as a representative for all womankind. That’s heavy lifting even for a superhero.
Amid accusations that her story arc in Avengers: Age of Ultron was stereotyped and offensive — because, like Tony Stark, she expressed a desire to step back from saving the world (and maybe find someone in it to love, and love her back) — Black Widow became a lightning rod.
Some accused writer-director Joss Whedon of sexism for a storyline that involved Widow developing romantic feelings for Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner in the comic-book version of the Beauty and the Beast folktale. Others were outraged that Widow expressed regret over the juvenile assassin program that forced her to be sterilized. Still others took offense at that complaint, saying the desire to have a family doesn’t mean a woman can’t have a career (beating the hell out of evildoers, or otherwise).
NPR’s pop culture critic Linda Holmes astutely noted that even if you swapped out Widow’s story in Ultron with the arcs of any of her male co-Avengers, each would still “raise questions of whether the story was influenced by gender stereotypes.” If she was Iron Man, she’d be the problem-causer. If she was Captain America, she’d be the uptight one. If she was Hulk, she’d have out-of-control emotions. And so on …
Add to that the scarcity of Black Widow toys, which caused universal uproar, even from Ruffalo, who tweeted about the need for Marvel merchandising to do a better job of inviting young girls to play in this universe, and Natasha Romanov starts to emerge not just as a warrior but a battlefield.
Which brings us to Captain America: Civil War. Where does Natasha’s fifth appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe find her?
This time, she’s on the side of order, aligning — at least for a while — with Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man in trying to get Captain America to honor the global Sokovia Accords that force “enhanced individuals” to operate under government control.
In one scene EW watched being filmed this summer, she and Tony Stark have a quiet moment after being given an ultimatum to bring down the rogue Cap — or else the U.S. government will do it in permanent fashion.
Stark rubs at the center of his chest, where his ARC reactor was once embedded. “You know the problem with a fully functional heart…? It’s stressful,” he tells Natasha.
Scarlett Johansson Interview
During a break in filming, we caught up with Johansson, and asked what she thinks of the tug-of-war over her character.
During a break in filming, we caught up with Johansson, and asked what she thinks of the tug-of-war over her character.
Where is Natasha’s head these days? In what state do we find her after the events of Age of Ultron?
Scarlett Johansson: My gosh, this is like a therapy session! When we last saw her I think the stakes were astronomical. And she basically had to make this choice between [duty] and what she probably deserves. I think up until this point, she has put the hours in and is ready for…
To be, or not to be, an Avenger?
[Laughs] You know, I don’t think she’s ever aspired to become an Avenger. That’s not really a choice that she made. It’s kind of like the events in her life led her to that point and when we see her [in Civil War], she’s finally capable of making a choice for herself. Which is kind of a milestone in someone’s life when they’ve not really participated in the decisions that were made for them. She’s finally at a place where she’s going, “Okay, I actually kind of know what I want. And I think I kind of deserve it.”
But she’s still in the fight. So is that what she wants?
Unfortunately the events that took place … she has this kind of greater calling and this huge pull towards doing what’s right for the greater good. And she chooses that, and it’s a really heroic thing that she does, I think.
Widow appeared to be leading the team of new Avengers we saw at the end of Ultron, gathered at their headquarters.
Yeah, I don’t know if she’s leading this team but she’s certainly, she’s — I think Natasha’s a very strategic thinker and that’s her strongpoint. Her superpowers, if you want to call them that, are her experience, her ability to make usually the right decision in a quick moment, in a tight minute. And she’s not personally invested. I mean, that’s what she tells herself anyway. And so that keeps her head kind of level and clear.
She seems to be leaning strongly toward Iron Man’s side of things.
I think when you find her in Civil War, she’s looking to strategize her position, putting herself in a place where she is able to let the powers that be fight it out or whatever amongst themselves. She’s always a little bit on the perimeter so she can have a better perspective of what’s really going on.
With a huge push into virtual reality and a major focus on television and digital, the Tribeca Film Festival offers a wide-lens snapshot of contemporary content creation. But, festival director Genna Terranova tells Jeremy Kay, “Film is the bedrock.”
Terranova and Loren Hammonds, programmer, film & interactive, talk big picture and sample a selection of offerings at this year festival, based at the Spring Studios hub.
Other highlights include the inaugural Digital Creators Market, and the Hacked programme, curated by Def Con and Mr. Robot. The Tribeca Film Festival runs from April 13-24.
How do you feel as Tribeca gets underway?
Genna Terranova: It’s a really fun year. We had a really good time putting together the programme this year. We’ve seen it change a lot over the years and for the first time people have been coming to us saying, ‘We want to play in Tribeca, that’s what we thought about from the beginning.’ It was good to hear from the industry that their movies sold last year and we really took care of them. It makes our jobs a little bit easier when we know they’re satisfied with what they’re coming and getting. We work really hard to make it the best possible experience because it’s New York and it can be overwhelming and they need to feel they’re part of something special.
The film roster is lively and kicks off a little differently this year…
Genna Terranova: We’ve done opening night with each section. We divided out the US competition narrative from the international films and felt this was incredibly freeing. We were able to select a group of American films we feel are our discoveries. We wanted to give each film their own platform.
There are so many we’re proud of. Look out for [US Narrative Competition opening film] Kicks, The Fixer, Elvis & Nixon, [Viewpoints opening film] Nerdland, good acquisitions titles like [Spotlight opening film] Devil And The Deep Blue Sea. We have Adult Life Skills, [Guadalajara winner] El Charro De Toluquilla, The Phenom, Wolves, [International Narrative Competition opening film] Madly, El Clasico, The Tenth Man from Berlin, Adult Life Skills, Califórnia, Reset.
In documentaries we have All This Panic, Betting On Zero, The Return, South West Of Salem, Solitary, Night School, National Bird, Keep Quiet, Tickling Giants.
You seem excited by Command And Control in the Spotlight programme…
Genna Terranova: Command And Control by Robert Kenner and Eric Schlosser is based on Eric’s book about nuclear weapons and how we’re reaching a crisis point. Eric and his producer wanted to create an installation on a grand scale. It’s at Gotham Hall and they’ve worked with British Company United Artists who are masters at creating these immersive experiences. They’ve created a silo and this British band The Acid will be playing.
They’ve created a movie about nuclear weapons and it works backwards and shows you how it all came to be and… focuses on how this is a crisis and brings a lot of new imagery to get people aware of this crisis. There is a whole generation lost on this and they’re building these weapons and there’s no awareness. No-one cares that we have 16,000 of these weapons.
Eric is very passionate about it. Command And Control is based on an incident mentioned in the book. They’re intent on taking it around the world and it’s backed by the MacArthur Foundation. It will play several times on the last weekend and Michael Douglas, who is a huge anti-nuclear advocate, will do a talk too. It’s cool to see that intersection of music, film and theatre in one event.
The festival is covering a wide range of content and platforms now, besides film…
Genna Terranova: We’re trying to be a little bit more platform-agnostic. Obviously film is most important to us. We haven’t change the programme. We’re still supporting the same number of films – that’s the focus and it’s where we give $175,000 worth of awards. And last year 80% of our films sold for distribution. But we also need to be very aware of where things are evolving and begin these new initiatives small. Three years ago we started highlighting [digital creators] and who knew that three years later there would be billboards and one has an HBO show.
So how do we service that community more, because they will transition, they are making feature films, it’s already happening, but we want to support the artist in whatever direction they go in and that’s one of the reasons we have an amazing Directors series this year. We have JJ Abrams, Joss Whedon, Andrea Arnold, Jodie Foster, Baz Luhrmann, Alfonso Cuaron – these are the icons [among] film directors right now and they will have brilliant conversations.
But we felt like since we are expanding what that notion is to be a storyteller we wanted to include more voices in those conversations, so that’s why we added Tina Fey, Tom Hanks, who’s a director-producer. People are doing a lot of different things… it’s not the old studio system where people just make films. They’re moving in a lot of different directions.
Tell us a bit about the TV offerings…
Genna Terranova: We’re very proud of it. Animal Kingdom [TNT premiere] was not only a great pilot but has a great DNA as a Sundance film. Every premiere we do is coupled with an extensive talk because we want to educate the public about process… and help people understand a little bit more who the credits are.
Our identity has evolved. Storytelling has taken on a bigger focus. That’s the advantage we have. We’ve been supporting storytellers in different mediums, not only film. Film is the bedrock of the festival but on the transmedia side and telling stories outside the screen – that’s been a big priority for us for many years.
Genna Terranova: We have Roots, we have Greenleaf, [OWN], which is being produced by Oprah and for fun, Time Traveling Bong [Comedy Central], and Broad City [Comedy Central]. Roots shows how The History Channel is moving into original content, which is exciting. Chef’s Table is another one [Netflix Season 2], Grace And Frankie is a fun show on Netflix with a conversation between Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin afterwards.
We have some great conversations: The Catastrophe [Amazon] writers are British. Full Frontal [TBS]. We have The Good Wife’s farewell. It’s been a huge hit for CBS and a New York institution. We’re having Alan Ball come and do director’s commentary for the final episode of Six Feet Under. We’ll show O.J.: Made In America.[ESPN Films]. We feel the TV section represents a great cross-section of where television is today.
A lot of artists are crossing over and TV had become a stronger medium and there’s been sharing [of] a lot of the talent and servicing both communities and our industry and our business, so anything that’s providing more business for our business is a good thing, so being able to support across those platforms is important to us.
We’ve also been able to keep our curatorial voice with TV. There’s a lot of TV coming out, but there’s enough great TV that we can pick and choose a creative programme.
Genna Terranova: More and more TV companies and networks are thinking about festivals to launch their shows just as studios have thought about festivals for their films. There’s so much to see out there that whatever can give that extra visibility and attention is [important]… If you think of it in terms of venn diagrams, you have film that has come closer to television and television had had a lot of success using talent from film as in True Detective and taking the medium and getting deeply into characters. As far as prestige goes [film] has been the focus for many years and [now] you see them coming together and the talent crossing over. You see the business models [coalesce] and the same companies are investing in TV as in film.
What can people expect from the Digital Creators Market on April 21?
Genna Terranova: What’s new this year is the digital creator world, which are people who work on YouTube and Vimeo. [They] know they might not make their first film but might make a web series or to-camera personal stories, and we’re interested in how they come into the mix and [how] that talent is getting more exposure. You can see it on the billboards here.
There’s a big wave that’s happening and traditional media are curious. They need the development just like any other creators… so one initiative we’re launching this year is the Digital Creators Market and Special Screenings. That is going to be about 30 digital creators that are going to come and we’re facilitating meetings with industry in the traditional media and digital media, so it’s a whole day. We wanted to create an event for them because they don’t have a Sundance or a Tribeca on their calenda… to encourage their films to grow. Creating those environments for people to meet in New York is important to us.
We’ll have Josh Hutcherson there talking about the work he’s doing with The Black List and Indigenous. They’re producing shorts on unproduced scripts that are meant for online consumption. We’ll have YouTube original series with a new series called Sing It. You’ll get more involved in this world and know these guys – we’re all being pushed in that direction in some way.
There is an aging-out that happens when the audience that follows a lot of these creators, when they hit a certain age the creator has trouble continuing or transitioning. It’s like when Justin Timberlake was on Disney and was an actor-singer – or Britney Spears – and then they had to pivot and transition their careers. What we’re interested in is the pivot, where these kids have had a lot of training in Hollywood. They’re very knowledgeable, but how to do they transition into bigger stuff because it is essentially a talent pool that’s really been untested in the more traditional sense.
We’re thinking of it as an incubator and putting them in a room and talking about the things they’re creating. It’s really exciting. We have a film in our US Narrative comptetition called Women Who Kill from Ingrid Jungermann who was a web sieres creator and now she’s making her feature film debut and it’s a brilliant, witty film. This is a unique voice that came from a unique place. We have Francis For Coppola in Storytellers and he’s speaking not just about film but about food and wine. It’s remarkable that we’ve gotten to build this out of the Directors Series and got people to get excited to speak with us. They’re calling us and asking how they can get involved. It’s a great position.
Virtual reality crops up in the Storyscapes section and you also have a dedicated programme...
Genna Terranova: This year we’ve created the Virtual Arcade, It’s a bigger VR platform. It’s more of a populist programme where we’re trying to show the breadth of work that VR creators are doing. We have Invasion!, an experience by Eric Darnell [and Maureen Fan] from Baobab Studios. He’s the director of Madagascar and has created this animated VR experience about bunnies fighting aliens and and it’s really entertaining.
There’s another one called Allumette from Penrose Studios created by Eugene Chung, who was at Pixar. It’s beautifully animated and it based on The Little Match Girl… We’ll have multiple stations for Allumette where people can go in. It’s a 10 by 10 stall, you put the headset on, you’re tethered to a computer and you get to wander around this beautiful Venetian-inspired world.
Genna Terranova: You have serious VC’s money backing these companies out of San Francisco who are pushing technology forward every day; literally every day they’re coming up with new things to solve issues and have created these worlds… Animators in particular are creating worlds around us so you can move inside them and look at things. Maureen [Fan] is playing with the idea of the sense of touch so when you’re immersed she introduces something sensory outside your field of vision and how that makes the viewer react.
Felix + Paul are our artists in residence and have Imagination Day, when there will be 500 people with headsets experiencing a piece.
Genna Terranova: Virtual reality is an isolated experience and we’re trying to make it communal. Augmented reality will evolve, but right now we’re having a lot of fun supporting the earlier stage. The leaps and bounds they’ve come since last year is amazing.
Just because Henry Cavill makes a dashing Clark Kent doesn’t mean he’s always Superman outside of Hollywood. In fact, he can have a downright Lex Luthor-like side to him at times when it comes to his love life. Let’s take a look at the darker side of the Man of Steel’s relationship history.
Superman shouldn’t brag
When ShortList asked Cavill whether he wears swimming shorts or “budgie smugglers” (Speedos, for the uncultured), he replied, “Definitely, definitely swimming shorts. More like a parrot smugglers. A Macaw or something. Perhaps a large bird of prey. Bald eagle. There you go.” Remember the old adage about protesting too much? That applies to Cavill’s comments. At least Batman’s actors are a bit more subtle with the innuendos.
He likes younger women a little too much
In 2016, Cavill’s girlfriend, Tara King, was 13 years younger than him—and she couldn’t even drink legally stateside! When asked about his barely legal love, he explained to Elle, “People say age is just a number. It’s actually real and true sign of someone’s maturity. But in this case, she’s fantastic. When I met my girlfriend, I was super intimidated. I wanted to impress her.”
He was even nervous about the whole ordeal, saying “I was thinking, ‘Don’t mess this up, man.'” Oh, calm down, Kal-El. You’re a movie star. She’s a college student. The only risk of immaturity may be Cavill’s own: you know those weird 20-somethings who hang out in high school parking lots? Think along those lines, but even older.
His last girlfriend was pretty sketchy
Cavill’s last girlfriend before King, Marisa Gonzalo, didn’t seem like a match for the actor at all. Why? Cavill is a self-proclaimed and well-documented animal lover, and Gonzalo, well, likes to post pictures of herself posing with animals she killed hunting. Celebrity Dirty Laundry reports that Gonzalo frequently leaked photos of her excursions with Cavill, and that the pair met at a Michigan gym while he was filming in the area. Once Cavill got wind of Gonzalo spilling on their affair to press, he called it quits on the relationship.
He can’t decide what he wants
While Cavill’s tastes lean towards younger ladies now, he admits that he dated a 32-year-old woman when he was 19—and he still isn’t quite sure what to do with his heart (or, uh, his bald eagle). He told Playboy, “It’s tough for anyone to be in a relationship with someone like me. It’s a tough lifestyle. If I want someone who’s a professional, they’ve got their own s*** going on.
So unless I meet someone who’s very, very young who hasn’t yet started trying a career like that, you can then go, ‘Okay, I’m going to travel with you and do some stuff, maybe I’ll write or whatever; I’ll entertain myself or build my own kind of travelling career.’ I’m looking for someone who’s my own age and will have a career. If they haven’t, then maybe I should be worried. It’s easier said than done.” We hope he finally finds her.
He won’t stop talking about sex
In an interview with Jimmy Fallon in August 2015, Cavill was asked about his workout regimen. Cavill responded, “For cardio… run? That’s the savory answer.” We all know what he actually meant, especially when he looked around suspiciously and said, “It burns a lot of calories.” That same month, he told The Guardian that playing Superman is “like shagging someone for the first time. Sometimes it turns out to be amazing. Mostly you’re trying to get each other’s rhythm going. It’s on the next go that you start to expand.” Cool it, Kent. Jimmy Olsen might be listening!
Zilan Odabasi was born in Diyarbakir, Turkey, in 1988 to a Kurdish father and a Turkish mother. Her father, Yilmaz, was a well-known poet. Odabasi went to school in the city of Izmir and established herself as an actress there. She started acting in TV dramas and films in 2006, and took part in a beauty contest sponsored by Avon, winning second place. Her photographs published in women’s magazines.
Her beauty and charm have brought her great popularity in Turkey. She recently starred in a movie about the life of women in Turkey’s Kurdistan and the Kurds who collaborate with the state against Kurdish guerillas. The movie was screened in theatres across Turkey last month.
Odabasi says that she lost a lot of trust in men after her husband cheated on her. “Men with feeling, love, and intelligence are attractive to me,” she said, adding that money and handsomeness don’t matter to her.
Odabasi first started acting at a very young age, becoming more professional after she met the current manager of her agency. “Ever since I was a kid I haven’t thought of anything but performing,” she said. “After finishing high school, I got to know Tomay Uzukur, who now runs my agency. That’s how my acting career started.”
Despite the exposure she was given through the Avon contest, Odabasi is certain that it was her training and acting experience that brought her the fame she enjoys now. “I can say it was experience and study that opened doors for me. Beauty isn’t everything. It’s something you have today but might not have tomorrow,” she said.
Odabasi, who has starred in both TV series and movies, thinks that appearing in a movie is very different from working on television shows. She believes that, in comparison, films are unforgettable.
“When you think about the past, there are few TV shows that you remember. But working in cinema is something different. It is an international art,” she said. “There are certain movies that you can’t forget even one minute of, or their characters, and want to watch over and over. TV shows are like talking and cinema is like writing. Talk evaporates but writing remains.”
Odabaşı would prefer to star in movies that confront real issues and appeal to people who struggle to survive. She says that cinema is perhaps the only art form that can easily deliver its message everywhere.
“I’d like to take part in serious, sad movies that deal with social problems, like the struggle of the Kurdish people and their aspirations and goals. I would be more than happy to act in those kinds of movies. We can reach a lot of people through cinema.”
As with many Kurdish children in Turkey, being born to a Kurdish family didn’t mean Odabasi grew up speaking Kurdish. Tough laws have always banned the Kurdish language in that country. She had to take courses in Kurdish and get a certificate.
“My Kurdish is good now. I finished the language course successfully and got a certificate. I had the lead role in Querej [Gypsy] and spoke all the Kurdish parts myself.”
Zilan Odabasi hopes to one day play the famous Kurdish MP Leyla Zana, who went to prison for ten years for merely speaking a few sentences in Kurdish in the Turkish parliament. Odabaşı admires Zana as a brave and dignified woman.
“If one day someone wants to make a movie about her life, I would be happy to play Zana,” said Odabasi. “She is from Diyarbakir, like me, and has a special place in my heart. There are many other Kurdish women besides Zana who have struggled and have become historic figures in the Middle East. I am proud of them.”
Kurds have always appeared in Turkish cinema, but Odabaşı isn’t happy with the types of roles they have been given. “Generally, Kurdish actors have played the roles of servants, villagers, murderers, and ignorant, comic, and naïve people.” she said. “I believe they portray the Kurds in the cinema they way they perceive and see them.”
She compares the role of Kurds in the Turkish cinema to that of African Americans in the American cinema. “The same thing somehow exists in American cinema, where negative or funny roles, thieves, murderers, and rapists are acted by African Americans,” said Odabasi.
However, Odabasi believes that the emergence of several Kurdish filmmakers has helped change the ways Kurds are generally seen, and now many people know that Kurds are, in reality, not the way they’ve historically been portrayed to be.
“There’s a new phenomenon in Turkish filmmaking: if someone in Turkey wants to make a serious movie, he’ll try to portray the Kurds objectively,” she said.
As an actress Odabasi believes that, in Turkey, some actors and actresses hesitate about revealing their Kurdish identity as they may face discrimination in the movie industry as a result of it; Kurds generally are discriminated against in that country, no matter their professional field.
“Prejudice exists in Turkey in all areas of life. When there is a social conflict, the way you’re treated is based on your ethnic identity. Art should not cover up and deny the truth and realities,” she said. “For example, when [Kurdish director] Yilmaz Guney was acting in movies, he was given trivial and simple roles. But when he wrote scripts and made his own movies and showed the reality [of life in Turkey], he drew the attention of the whole world.”
As a Kurdish woman, and because of her Kurdish name, Zilan Odabasi has experienced discrimination since she was a child. “When I was at elementary school, I had to face a lot of difficulties and injustices because of my name. But I never took it seriously. In cinema I haven’t come across any problems because of that. But I don’t know what is said behind my back and behind closed doors,” she said.
Odabasi is currently studying radio and TV journalism, and she says that she has dedicated herself fully to her studies. She is also taking Kurdish and Persian language courses and reading books in those languages whenever she gets a chance, she says.
About the possibility of a role in a movie in Iraqi Kurdistan, Odabasi says that she would be happy to participate, so long as the movie is up to her standards. “I would say yes happily,” she said. “I would take part in any serious movies with a Kurdish character.”
Leslie Bibb, one-time Popular girl to talk about her comedic role in Amazon’s hot new pilot, “Salem Rogers”. The conversation became much less rigid, with the actress dishing her secrets to keeping any love hot, teaching me how to throw shade like Naomi Campbell, and powerfully explaining why she’s hopeful this new show makes waves for women.
So you’re in a new Amazon pilot, “Salem Rogers”, opposite Rachel Dratch. It’s amazing.
I know! I read that script and told the writers, “I am your girl!” I play a one-time supermodel who returns from rehab to, once again, take on the fashion world. Lots of people call Salem “mean and rude,” but I don’t think of it that way. She has gumption, she doesn’t care what any one thinks about her.
And Rachel Dratch is your co-star?!
Yes, we’ve been friends for years. She plays Salem’s ex-assistant. It’s funny, they’re both like half human beings caught in arrested development. When they come together, they make one hell of a whole human being.
Every star needs an assistant, I guess. Any funny stories?
I have a celebrity friend who told me a story about how she was pissed at her boyfriend and ran a car into his house. “What?! Who did you call,” I asked. “My assistant,” she said. Assistants in Hollywood see the craziest things!
You were once a top model. Any crazy stories from behind the scenes?
So, Oprah, Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista and Molly Sims helped me become a model. And four years later, there was a Versace show I was cast in. I remember one girl, who wasn’t even like a big supermodel, was being so mean to me. And out of nowehere Naomi Campbell looked over at me and said “you’re the one we chose!” She asked how I was doing, and I told her ‘that girl was being really mean to me.’ And she just turned to her and f****ing told that girl off. Then, like nothing happened, she walked down the runway steps like a gazelle. She was perfect.
One skill you learned from being a model that’s helped you in Hollywood?
Well, I learned that though you’ll mostly hear “no,” you have to keep going and never take anything personally. But I also learned at 16, from living in New York to Italy and Japan by myself, how important it is to be responsible and show up. You have to hustle, and show up to make it.
Ever want to take anything from the set of Salem Rogers?
There are Jimmy Choo gladiator heels in the first scene. And I remember telling the crew that they were “everything to me. That in my soul, I know this is what Salem should be wearing.” And that’s what’s great about being an actress vs. a model. You don’t question what people put you in as a model. As an actress you have say about your character, about their personalities, and even their outfits. As a model, you shut up and you take the walk…it’s beautiful, but it’s not you.
What are you most excited about if your pilot gets picked up by Amazon?
Well, aside from there being so much to mine with my character, I’m excited to see the writer’s room. The writer, Lindsey Vaillancourt, is a woman and the idea of bucking the trend in Hollywood and having a room full of women writers would be incredible. So many men write for women, and it’s fine, but just imagine the possibilities.
So how do we vote?
Head to Amazon, watch the pilot, and favorably review! Amazon will choose the pilot with the most interactions to pick up!
And, finally, you’ve been dating Sam Rockwell forever. What are the 3 things that make a love last?
- Hot Sex
- Make each other laugh
Said like a top model, no?