The things fans love about The Empire Strikes Back are not things present in a live read: John Williams unbelievable score, the breathtaking action set pieces, and locations like Hoth, Dagobah and Cloud City. At a live read, it’s just the actors, the script, a few images and the audience. As a massive Star Wars fan that was my big concern going into the latest Jason Reitman Live Read, presented by Film Independent. Would The Empire Strikes Back hold up without so much of what makes it great?
The answer, as you’d expect, isn’t that straightforward.
Below, read all about The Empire Strikes Back Live Read which not only featured Ellen Page as Han Solo and Aaron Paul as Luke Skywalker, but also Mark Hamill in a special appearance reading the Emperor, Boba Fett and Obi-wan Kenobi roles. Read More »
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If you live in Los Angeles and have yet to check out the 4DX theater at the Regal Cinemas L.A. Live, this weekend is the perfect time to do it. You’ll be making history as part of the world’s first 4D Film Festival, taking place as part of the 3D Film Festival on Saturday November 6. Both Penguins of Madagascar and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 will screen in 4D preceded by a mystery screening and followed by a panel discussing the technology along with virtual reality.
The whole event sounds like something that’s a must attend if you have interest in the future of theatrical exhibition. Below, read more about the world’s first 4D film festival and more. Read More »
Usually when I go to a Live Read, I know the movie like the back of my hand. Ghostbusters, Pulp Fiction, The Usual Suspects, American Beauty, these are all movies I’ve seen dozens of times and know backwards and forwards. However, the November reading was a film I’d never seen until this week: Barry Levinson‘s Diner. It totally deserves to be mentioned among those films, but it somehow fell through the cracks in my years as a film fan. It’s as timeless, funny and poignant as any movie I’ve ever seen.
Watching the film, I began to worry about the Live Read. Sure this was a movie with dynamic characters based on a razor sharp script, but Levinson’s film also created such a perfect atmosphere. The movie was 1959 Baltimore, from the weather to the locations, outfits and the music. Oh, the music. Diner is a jukebox full of awesome tunes and the Live Reads don’t play music during the read. Was it going to work out?
Presenter and director Jason Reitman had an answer for that. To make the script move at a clip worthy of its amazing original cast, and to make the audience forget there was no music or settings to enhance it, he’d need actors who are incredibly familiar with each other. Actors with an ability to deliver filthy dialogue very fast, have perfect chemistry, talk a ton of crap and dish about football. How about the cast of FXX’s The League?
Yes, almost the entire cast of The League read Barry Levinson’s Diner at latest Jason Reitman Live Read, presented Film Independent at LACMA. Below, read what the cast brought to the script and what the script revealed about itself. Read More »
This month, science is really big at the movies. It starts Friday when Interstellar and Big Hero 6 open wide, both of which feature science and its applications as a primary plot point. They’re followed by The Theory of Everything and The Imitation Game, two true stories about geniuses who used science to change the world.
It’s perfect then that Film Independent is linking science and movies with their upcoming Sloan Film Summit. It takes place November 14 through November 16 at L.A. LIVE in downtown Los Angeles and will feature screenings and Q&As for Everything and Imitation as well as a keynote speech by House of Cards creator Beau Willimon. There are also sneak peaks at three films that were, or are being, completed with funs from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Those are Basmati Blues (starring Scott Bakula, Brie Larson and Donald Sutherland), The Man Who Knew Infinity (starring Jeremy Irons and Dev Patel) and Experimenter (starring Peter Sarsgaard, Taryn Manning, Winona Ryder and Kellan Lutz).
Below, watch a video about the event, narrated by Werner Herzog, and find out how to attend. Read More »
It’s a shame only 600 people got to see Jason Reitman‘s Live Read of American Beauty on Thursday. If more people saw it, they’d be lining up to see Men, Women and Children this weekend. The cast proved they are wonderful together.
As the kickoff to the 4th season of Live Reads at LACMA, Reitman presented Alan Ball‘s Oscar-winning 1999 script. For all the roles, he chose actors from his latest film. (Which happens to open wide this weekend.) In the role of Lester Burnham, for which Kevin Spacey won an Oscar, Reitman cast Adam Sandler. The wife Carolyn, originally played by Annette Benning, was played by Rosemarie DeWitt. Their daughter Jane, originated by Thora Birch, was played by Kaitlyn Dever. Her best friend Angela, originated by Mena Suvari, was played by Olivia Crocicchia. Buddy the real estate king, first played by Peter Gallagher, was read by Phil LaMarr. Next door, the Colonel, played by Chris Cooper, was read by Dean Norris. DeWitt doubled as his wife (Allison Janney) and their son, the pot-dealer Ricky was Travis Tope. Wes Bentley originated the role.
With a script as good as Ball’s, an infant could read it and it would sound like poetry. What Reitman showcased with his latest cast is prove that good words are one thing, but chemistry and talent are something entirely different and wonderful. Below, read more about the American Beauty Live Read presented by Film Independent at LACMA. Read More »
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We’ve seen a lot of concept art for locations in film, but we don’t highlight too many concepts of real-world spaces. But the planned Los Angeles expansion of the Alamo Drafthouse theater chain is reason to deviate from our typical pattern. We know the theater is planned to feature 9 screens that can house about 800 people in the downtown location off Flower St. Now these concept renderings show us an exterior view of the planned space. Read More »
UPDATE: Tickets are now on sale for the Pulp Fiction/Professional double feature.
Late summer left Los Angeles repertory fans scratching their heads as the long-running New Beverly Cinema abruptly closed for the month of September with the promise of renovations and new programming to come starting in October. As it turns out, Quentin Tarantino, who owns the theater building and has long provided financial backing to the New Bev, decided to take over programming the theater, ditching a recently-installed digital projector and committing to film-only projection. This week, the theater reopens and the first New Beverly programming under Tarantino’s stewardship has been announced.
Read More »
Christopher Nolan is such a big draw and an advocate for IMAX, the company is going above and beyond for his latest feature. /Film has exclusively learned IMAX will be specially installing a 15perf/70mm film projection system inside the company’s flagship TCL Chinese Theater IMAX in Hollywood, CA, just for Interstellar.
Normally, the theater uses an IMAX xenon dual digital projection system, but Nolan wants Interstellar projected on IMAX film wherever possible. IMAX officials have confirmed they’re doing this specifically for this film, in this important location. Read more about the Interstellar IMAX 70mm projection below. Read More »
Even the creators of The Simpsons know we love the old stuff. Specifically, the first 10 to 12 seasons. That’s the period in which Matt Groening‘s iconic yellow family took the world by storm and became a television institution. Since then many fans have fallen off the show, citing a decline in quality, and maybe that decline is a fact. But The Simpsons endures. This year is the 25th anniversary of the show, making it the longest-running sitcom in U.S. history.
To celebrate the anniversary, The Simpsons took over legendary Los Angeles concert venue The Hollywood Bowl for a three night concert event called The Simpsons Take the Bowl. Hosted by Hank Azaria (the voice of Moe, Ape, Chief Wiggum and many others), the event featured a slew of guest stars performing songs and score from The Simpsons, with a strong focus on the early years. Mainly, songs from the 1997 album Songs in the Key of Springfield, including The Monorail Song, Who Needs the Kwik-E-Mart, The Stonecutters Song, Happy Birthday Lisa and others. This being Hollywood, there were some references to The Simpsons Movie, too, and Hans Zimmer live-conducting the score to the Oscar-nominated short, The Longest Daycare.
Basically, if you loved The Simpsons as a child or adult, it was a simply fantastic evening of entertainment. And, if you couldn’t be there, several of the numbers from the evening have been uploaded online. Check them out below. Read More »