Wednesday, February 27, 2013

'CHLORINE' scheduled to screen on March 15th at Sun Valley Film Festival

Just received the schedule for the Sun Valley Film Festival and 'Chained' will screen on Friday, March 15TH   at 8 p.m.

Stranger With My Face Horror Film Festival special guest Jennifer Lynch will screen 'Chained', 'Surveillance' and 'Despite The Gods'

Posted by Stranger With My Face Horror Film Festival on February 27, 2013

Tickets are now on sale for the niche genre festival, 7-10 March in Hobart 


Hobart – 27 February— Highly regarded filmmaker Jennifer Lynch (daughter of iconic filmmaker David Lynch) will be a special guest at the Stranger With My Face Horror Film Festival in Hobart next week. 

Lynch will be present for the opening night film Despite the Gods, a documentary which details her difficult experiences while directing the feature film Hissss in India. 

The film’s director, Australian Penny Vozniak, will also be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A. 

“This is the ideal film to open the festival,” says Stranger With My Face’s Briony Kidd, “It’s not only a hugely entertaining doco, but it concerns the struggle of a female director making genre cinema, so will be of particular interest to our audience and the other visiting filmmakers.” 

“We’re excited to have Jennifer at the festival, because she’s had a fascinating career to date and her work is so strong and original.” 

The Stranger With My Face Horror Film Festival focuses on female perspectives in the horror genre and highlights the work of women specifically, in an area of the film industry where they are greatly underrepresented behind the camera. 

It’s affiliated with an international movement, Women in Horror Month, and coincides with International Women’s Day on 8 March. The festival’s aims are about increasing the quality and entertainment value of mainstream cinema by encouraging diversity. 

Stranger With My Face will screen Lynch’s most recent film as director, Chained, on 9 March, with a post-screening Q&A. Well received on the international festival circuit in recent times, it stars Vincent D’Onofrio as a serial killer. 

In addition, Jennifer Lynch will introduce a screening of her 2008 thriller, Surveillance, at MONA Cinema on 9 March. MONA will also host a short program of selected films from the festival on 10 March, with details to be announced soon.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Out of the woodwork, 3 years later, 'Chlorine' to screen at Sun Valley Film Festival

         MARCH 14 - 17, SUN VALLEY, IDAHO

Oscar picks and New York theater...'Clive'

The ,”OSCARS,”…AND DRAMATIC REVELATIONS…let’s say it wasn’t about marketing and was about artistic merit … we should be so lucky!
My Choices :
Best Supporting Actress: Sally Field – “Lincoln”
Best Supporting Actor: I have no horse in this race.
Best Actress: Emmanuelle Riva – “Amour”
Best Actor: Daniel Day Lewis – “Lincoln”
Best Director: Ang Lee – “Life of Pi”
Best Original Screenplay: Quentin Tarantino – “Django Unchained”
Best Adapted Screenplay: David Magee – “Life of Pi”
Best Documentary: Dov Moreh, Philippa Kowarsky and Estelle Fialon – “The Gatekeepers”
Best Foreign Film: Michael Haneke – “Amour”
This was a hard one. It was also the most interesting categorie as well as the most competitive.
“Amour,” and “A Royal Affair,” a toss up with the edge going to, “Amour.” Not far behind and worth a shout out, “No,” is right up there. All three very good films. Bravo to all, and as long as we are, hailing…, “Life of Pi,” again, loudly, and for all time.
The Dramatic revelation…
Just for a change of pace, I went to the Theater.

Ethan Hawke in “Clive”
“CLIVE” at The New Group in New York
At The New Group, one of the more adventurous and ambitious of New York’s Theater Companies we have, “Clive.” The New Group do a limited number of plays each season, carefully chosen, well produced, directed and acted. Their standards are very high. Thy are consistently reliable and if they slip occasionally …they do try. The Artistic Director, Scott Elliot, is relentless in trying to bring interesting work to his audiences. Geoff Rich, the Executive Director says that what they try to do is to provide, “a true forum for the present culture.”
“Clive,” is written by Jonathan Marc Sherman and directed by Ethan Hawke. Mr. Hawke also plays the title character of Clive, fills and carries the play.
Watching the play I found myself thinking about actors. I have always thought actors to be the gift of the theater. Acting is not a 9 to 5 job and then you go home and zone out in front of the TV. They are in it come hell or high water and always at war with the beast. The next role, the workshops, classes, readings, rounds, agents, small parts, smaller parts, commercials, the road, waiting on tables, driving cabs, the chatter, the backbiting, who else can you talk to but other actors, the friendships … what I did for love… and always the craft … doing what you love to do with your life’s blood. And don’t try to explain it to anybody. In the words of the film heartthrob of yester-year, Van Johnson, “they’re civilians.” Actors must act and part of their great frustration, is the lack of opportunity. So we see in, “Clive,” Vincent D’Onofrio, a bavura actor. You’ll recognize him from TV’s, “Criminal Intent.” He brings the stage to life. We should see more of him on our stages. The ensemble is terrific. It’s like one big acting class. Young actors trying to shine in their instant choices to realize a moment and then move on. You have to start somewhere.
Ethan Hawke is a film star. “Training Day,” “Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead,” among many others. He has also been, “a contender,” on Broadway. Tom Stoppard’s, “The Coast of Utopia,” “Henry 1V,” “The Sea Gull,” all big time stuff. He has paid his dues… made, makes choices of grandeur. Rather than playing it safe, nestling into the star actor’s prerogatives of audience adulation and approval, he has carved out a different path for himself.  He wants to not only challenge himself, but also lead a meaningful, artistic and for him, healthy and vigorous life in a very difficult and frustrating cultural environment. He seems to be having a good time. It all comes together in, “Clive.” He is the reason for and the fulfillment of, ” Clive.” I guess he thought it would be easier to do it all himself. He gets an A for effort and a B for getting burned.
Not nearly all his fault. Jonathan Marc Sherman, says that, “Clive” is based on, inspired by, and stolen from the German version of Bertolt Brecht’s “Baal.” Mr. Sherman goes on to say that he used a literal translation to do his adaptation. It might have made a difference if the adapter understood German and breathed the nuance and texture of what meaning lay beneath the words in German so that he could adequately find the English understanding for the adaptation. What did the original play say …what was, “Baal,” all about?
We all steal. The key is to steal from the best and then do your version, wonderfully. Brecht pinched from John Gay’s, “Beggar’s Opera,” for his, “Three Penny Opera.” He took what he wanted and then made magic with it.
“Baal,” was Brecht’s first play, written when he was 20, in 1918. It is an angry young man’s play. A German young man, struggling with the society he was living in. Germany had lost the first World War. The country was in chaos. Brecht was furious with the theater and it’s taste for illusion and theatrical magic. He wanted to shake it up, rip it down, move his audiences with his vision of social conditions as they were. He wanted to provoke change by the challenge of his work on the stage. He was audacious, in your face, no holds bared, society, warts most of all. His was a theater of the despised, the depraved, and the despairing. Theater to run from. It was harsh …brutish … gutteral, like the German language itself. That was his, “Baal.” You can have cake if you are prepared to pay for it. Even if you aren’t. So long as you pay, and he would make his audiences pay. You see the seeds in, “Baal,” of, “The Three Penny Opera.” He’s talking about the same down-trodden underclass, but he had a social concern. I don’t see that social concern transposed to our culture, in, “Clive.” So what is, “Clive,” about?
Of course Mr. Sherman has updated, language, characterizations, locations … all to make it seem new and shiney today. For all of his changes, unless you find the right equivalents, things don’t remain the same, even if you intend them to equate. They just don’t. Mr. Sherman is talented … there are flashes … moments … some insights, crude but they and an honest attempt at relevance. There integrated musical doors with strings hanging from them; sounds nuts, but they are woven into the production design and occasionally plucked by characters scratching out melodic sound (not overdone) to enhance, contribute, to the dramatic moments. Surprised as I was …they work.  Another attempt at style is when the characters break to the audience and speak their own stage directions … a devise that added …what? It felt like an affectation of playwriting that was passed off for Brechtian style. And…more important … Mr. Sherman doesn’t have to do the dirty. He doesn’t fulfill the potential of the production. He doesn’t show the ugliness in all of its larger than life frontal assault on our sensibilities. Naming rape, seduction, assault, brutality … death …is really not the same as seeing it up front and personal. We get shadows, whispers of grossness, callousness, the harshness of man’s inhumanity to woman, and man. We see actorly versions of our culture’s underbelly, leaning heavily on sex, drugs and rock and roll for it’s own sake …and then I wrote … So What … or paraphrasing the mantra in, “Clive,” “A rat dies in the gutter … so what …?” Indeed … so what. Who cares.  And …we should care … about something or some one. Up there on the stage something must be happening that touches me at some point, for some reason. You can’t just tell me that everything is shit and so what … What does that say about me sitting in the dark nibbling my fear. I go to the theater for nourishment of some kind, not to just take up space and time. Nothing really happens in Clive’s story. He just is … and does l… destructive to himself and everyone, women, men, virgins, babies, anyone near him, anyone who might care for him, and then …, “a rat dies in the gutter … so what,” …and everyone shares the blame … including all of us.
About Irv Bauer
Screenwriter/Educator: IRV BAUER, has taught Screenwriting at the New York University’s Film School, at Sarah Lawrence College, and The Australian National Film School as well as in Master Classes at Cornell and at many other prominent venues. At the University of Bridgeport and The Minneapolis Playwright’s Lab he taught Playwriting as well as at the New Dramatist's in New York. At the University of Washington he taught Adaptation at the graduate level. In addition, Irv has taught workshops and seminars on screenwriting all over the world including special seminars for film and media communities in London, Paris, Sydney and New York and Los Angeles. His enormously popular annual two-week Summer Screenwriting Intensive in New York in July and Spoleto, Italy in August are attended by students from all over the world.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

'Interview: Matthew Modine on Kubrick and His 'Full Metal Jacket' App'

February 19, 2013
Matthew Modine
Few would truly argue that Full Metal Jacket is the greatest film about the Vietnam War. Some would say Platoon. Others Apocalypse Now. But Stanley Kubrick and his war film from 1987 showed audiences the preparation for war as it was under the draft, hard conditions that broke men down into heartless, sometimes mindless, killers. The star of that film, actor Matthew Modine, has made an iPad App that serves as a behind-the-scenes look on how Full Metal Jacket got made and how Kubrick, one of the great filmmakers of all time (not arguably), pulled it together. You can download the app from theApp Store now.
Modine's Full Metal Jacket Diary is an interactive, digital version of his own autobiography about the making of the film (more info here). The app includes over 400 high-res photos from the set, five chapters from Modine's book, and a four-hour audio experience that takes you through the production, beginning to end. The actor spent nearly two years on the film, and it was Kubrick's idea to have him shoot so many candid shots of the set, something that was extremely rare for Kubrick. It's a fascinating experience for any lovers of the filmmaking process, particularly that of such an outstanding film made by a master filmmaker.
I was fortunate enough to ask Mr. Modine a few questions via email regarding the filmmaking experience, working with Stanley Kubrick, and a number of elements found in the Full Metal JacketDiary app. Enjoy:
Matthew Modine in Full Metal Jacket
Going back to how the photos and journal came to be, you said that Stanley Kubrick encouraged you to take and keep them. Was this to help you get in the mindset of a war journalist, and how did that experience help you get into the character of Private Joker?
Matthew Modine: I have no idea why Stanley Kubrick allowed me to take photos. I know he didn't care much for my Rolleiflex camera. He said if I was going to take pictures that I should use a new model Minolta camera that had just come out. The Minolta was a camera with auto-everything and I didn't care much for it. Stanley was very specific about what lenses I should purchase, what type, and speed film to use. Even the type of camera bag. But I loved the feel and the mechanics of my Rollei. I preferred the square, 2 1/4" x 2 1/4" frame to that of a 35mm camera. I'm dyslexic and I believe that part of the reason I leaned toward and preferred the Rollei was because when you peer into the viewfinder - the images appear backward - or normal for a person who sees the world backward.
As far as my characterization of Joker, I think keeping my on-set diary was much more of a tool for understanding Joker as a combat journalist than taking photos. I'd say keeping a good diary and working in the creative realm of photography had a positive impact on both my characterization of Joker and my personal life-long growth as an artist.
Of the directors you've worked with (Kubrick, Robert Altman, Alan Parker, Oliver Stone, Christopher Nolan; all great filmmakers) was there something you noticed that set Kubrick apart from the rest in the way he worked or handled the material or actors? Or is there a similarity in how great filmmakers work?
MM: Stanley was the first director I worked with that found a way around perhaps the greatest obstacle a filmmaker faces; time. How does an artist create an environment for creativity - in an art form that demands a filmmaker to work like a factory worker on an assembly line? For Stanley, it meant living in and working in a place where he could stop, or at least slow down, the clock. I can't speak for the size of productions he had on his other films, but on FMJ we had a crew smaller than many small budget independents I have worked on. He also owned much of the camera equipment we used on the film. We worked in locations that were very affordable, thus alleviating high production costs and allowing him more time to film in them. Because he was Stanley Kubrick, crew members and actors would work for reduced salaries for the chance to work with a master filmmaker. Each of these things have the effect of giving a filmmaker more time. Time allows the filmmaker to discover his film and the story he is telling. It allows them not to compromise. Arliss Howard, who played Cowboy told me a story a few years ago. On the final day of filming Stanley said to Arliss, "you're going to miss me." "Yeah. Of course I'll miss you" said Arliss. "No. You're going to miss me on every film you make after this one" said Stanley. "You're going to be working on a film and the director is going to say, 'Cut! We got it. Lets move on' and you're going to miss me. You're going to miss me because you're going to know that he didn't get it as good as it could be. And you're going to miss me." Arliss said he hadn't worked on a film since then where he didn't miss Stanley for the reason he stated. Stanley created an environment where he could create a film, not shoot a schedule. Which is a massive achievement.
For those who don't know, talk a little about the time the production of Full Metal Jackettook; how long it took, what that experience of waiting was like, how your personal life changed in that time.
MM: I was in London for nearly two years. I can't say exactly how many days of filming there were. I just know how long I was in England. While the experience was amazing and a great reward, it was, to speak in metaphor, like going to sea and getting lost along the journey. Stanley being the captain of the ship, we all had to have faith in his seamanship. Everyone had to pitch in and keep the ship seaworthy and we all did our share of bailing water out of the boat. The script was like the stars in the night sky. We all knew where we started and where we had to get to. There were so many nights when clouds made it impossible to chart our course. Then there were storms. Thankfully, Stanley brought us to shore and delivered the goods. Thankfully my "Full Metal Jacket Diary" app tells the story without metaphor. In it, you can go on the journey I went on and discover through the eyes of a young actor what it was like to work with the genius, Stanley Kubrick.
Was there a moment during the production of Full Metal Jacket where you remember thinking you couldn't take much more of it, and, if not, how did you keep your mind focused on getting through such a rigorous production?
MM: Kubrick told me in the early days of production, "The person who gets the most rest wins." I assumed when he said this that he wanted to be sure I was in bed at reasonable hours and not out partying and then showing up to work with my ass hanging out and blood shot eyes. The fact of the matter was, after 14 hour shooting days you couldn't wait to get home and get some sleep. I don't know how Stanley managed because during filming he never seemed to get any rest.
Matthew Modine in Full Metal Jacket
From the excerpts, it sounds like Vincent D'Onofrio (above) went through something of the same transition as his character, Pvt. 'Gomer Pyle' Lawrence, though obviously not as extreme. Was that the method actor in him, or did Kubrick's direction push him that way?
MM: I can't speak for Vince. The funny thing about acting is, your body doesn't know it's "acting." Mentally, consciously, an actor makes choices about what to do, how to do it, how to say it, what not to do, and dozens of other things. He or she makes all these decisions and then shows up on set or on stage and then has to - kind of forget them all - and "be" the character. The actor has arrived full of all the choices they've come up with. At that point, the emotions the actor feels - anger, hatred, love, passion, empathy, fear, desire, loneliness, hopefulness, doubt, and a thousand more nouns become real - to the body. The actor doesn't act perspiration. He sweats. He doesn't act an accelerated heart rate, his heart actually beats faster. His fears and adrenaline are real - to the body. The actors imagination engages the physical functions of the body and the body responds. This is what happens when an actor commits to the demands of the role or character they are "playing." For Vince, portraying the innocent Pyle who is then beaten into becoming a broken and damaged human being, well, lets just say sometimes roles take their toll on the actor playing them.
Between takes, when the camera wasn't running, what was your interaction on set with R. Lee Ermey, Gunnery Sergeant Hartman, like? Did he stay in character?
MM: In my opinion, Lee wasn't acting. He was who he is in life. He was basically the same guy off camera as he was on camera. Only when the cameras weren't running, he was more of a barking man instead of a shouting DI. I have seen Lee in other films where I feel he was acting, and acting well -Mississippi Burning and Dead Man Walking are two examples. But I don't think Lee has any burning ambition to play Hamlet.
How do you and the other actors from Full Metal Jacket remember the production when it comes up in conversation? Not wanting to minimize actual war, but would you think it's akin to remembering the "time in the trenches"?
MM: I'd say we are all happy to have worked on a film that transcends time. It is not a film that no longer has relevance. It is a film that plays as well - or even better - today as it did upon its release date. It is rare when a film accomplishes this. FMJ actually gets better with time. In Gus Hasford's book, The Short-Timers, which is the inspiration for FMJ, Hasford talks about a phenomena soldiers and Marines experience after long tours of combat. They call it the "thousand yard stare." The people that worked onFMJ have something similar. Not a thousand yard stare, perhaps it's only nine hundred. Or Seventy-five. But it's a look. And then it's always followed with a smile. Smiling because we know we survived something really hard and we know we worked on and created something great.
I need to ask about the whole Mickey Mouse element to the film, because it's not just the soldiers singing at the end. There are at least two other references to Mickey Mouse in Full Metal Jacket. Was this Kubrick's blatant commentary on the Vietnam War in general, and was this ever anything he discussed during production?
MM: Stanley and I never directly discussed it. Michael Herr, who wrote the screenplay and the definitive book about war and in particular the Vietnam War, often referred to Vietnam as Disneyland and all the political and military aspects that made no logical sense as "Mickey Mouse." This was often followed by "bullshit," or preceded by, "fucking." "I cannot wait to get outta this fucking Disneyland. It's all such fucking Mickey Mouse bullshit." I think lines like this slipped from the lips of tens of thousands of young men and woman participating in a war that will never be fully understood or completely explainable or ever justifiable.
If you take the words from the song and put them in the context of capitalism or globalization, disguised or camouflaged in a cloak called democracy, the lyrics become eerie and evil. "Who is marching coast to coast and far across the sea? Who's the leader of the gang that's made for you and me?" It's just as eerie as "You are the caretaker. You've always been the caretaker" from The Shining or Slim Pickens riding the atomic bomb to his death with "We'll meet again, don't know where, don't know when" over the end credits. Fatalistic endings of Kubrick films? Or clarion calls from a great humanist, a realist, a man who sees humankind's folly and presents it to an audience - begging us all to see us as we are - and hoping we recognize the urgency to be better, to do better. This is the hope of a real humanist. A man who begged humankind to look in the mirror and see ourselves as we really are and to work, not just aspire, to be and do better. If we don't, we are little more than the early man that beat another early man to death with an animal's bone. That is the dream of the man that I knew and worked with.
Matthew Modine in Full Metal Jacket
If you're interested, you can download"Matthew Modine's Full Metal Jacket Diary for iPad in the App Store. It includes many more reflections and stories from the set of Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket just like those found here. Thank you to Matthew Modine for taking the time and answering our questions in such detail.

'SINISTER' with Vincent D'Onofrio and Ethan Hawke DVD/Blu-Ray Release Today


Saturday, February 16, 2013

Teaser poster for 'The Tomb'


'Todd Miller to edit Broken Horses'

By Bollywood Hungama News Network, Feb 16, 2013 - 12:03 hrs IST
Vidhu Vinod Chopra who is busy with his maiden Hollywood venture Broken Horses with Vincent D'Onofrio seems to be going to great lengths to ensure the film's success. In fact now we hear that VVC has roped in Hollywood editor par excellence Todd E. Miller to work on the gangster film. 

Having shot the film in US earlier this year, Vidhu has now roped in Miller, who has worked on films like The Expendables 2 and Transformers, to handle the editing of his film as well. Apart from this, reports also have it that Todd has moved base from US to Mumbai to edit the film. 

Broken Horses which features Vincent D'Onofrio (Men In Black) along with Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Chris Marquette (Alpha Dog), is an epic thriller about the bonds of brotherhood, the laws of loyalty and the futility of violence.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

'“Clive” - A dark human drama without the humanity'


By Judd Hollander
Photos: Monique Carboni

The New Group presents a powerful look at one man's hedonistic descent into self-destruction withClive, now at Theatre Row Studios.

Based on, inspired by and stolen from the German version of Bertolt Brecht's Baal -written in 1918 and retold here by Jonathan Marc Silverman - as noted in the press notes, Ethan Hawke directs and stars as the title character, a man who is basically a walking train wreck. A struggling New York musician who lives in a seventh floor walk-up, attempts to get his career going are continually stifled by his excesses of sex, drugs and alcohol. His having an affair with the wife of the man who might have become his music producer was also probably not a good idea. In short order Clive takes one woman after another into his bed, all the while snorting cocaine off everything from a woman's breast to his own guitar.

One can safely state that Clive is a totally despicable character in every way, yet for some unknown reason, women fall all over themselves to please him, to be with him and ultimately fall in love with him. Yet he feels nothing in these encounters but his own need for pleasure and release. Or does he in reality feel something so deep one can only catch a fleeting glimmer of it? He does at rare moments display a moment of regret, though it quickly vanishes, if it were ever actually there in the first place. It's this aspect of not knowing which makes the story and character so interesting, as one tries to make sense of what is presented.

It's also not only the ladies who wind up permanently hurt by Clive's actions. Rather, just about everyone whose path he crosses winds up damaged, such as Joey (Aaron Krohn), an earnest fellow who ends up becoming a drunk in his own right, at least part of that end game having to do with Clive's encounter with Joanna (Zoe Kazan), Joey's once-virginal girlfriend. Clive's one true friend is the mysterious Doc (wonderfully played by Vincent D'Onofrio), a big burly enigma of man who at one point almost seems to embody the darker side of Clive, if such a thing is possible, continually urging his friend to go deeper and deeper into the moral abyss.

This running theme of reaping what one sows also serves to undo the play somewhat, as there is no emotional or intellectual connection offered as a means to get inside Clive's head and see just what is driving him. It's a problem that also hinders other character development of the play time and again. So while the production in itself is quite interesting, said interest comes from watching what happens and seeing how far Clive can go, rather than caring at all about just where he or the others in the play end up. Thus the story becomes more vicariously powerful than anything more meaningful.

Hawke does do a great job as Clive, portraying someone whose life has been spiraling out of control long before the show began. Directorially, Hawke keeps the action moving and the information imparted interesting enough, where just as one thinks events can't get any worse, they do. However, as mentioned above, having a little more emotional connection with Clive would have made the play work better. Whether this is a problem that lies solely with Hawke's interpretation and direction, or in Silverman's adaptation of the original tale, or in the original tale itself is open to question. The show does a good job in setting events in no particular point in time--it supposedly takes place in the 1990s, but could actually be happening pretty much anywhere over the last 35 years or so.

The rest of the actors, most of whom play multiple roles, all do quite well. Kazan is effective as the innocent yet questioning Joanna, while Krohn offers a somber look at his own moral collapse - going from a seemingly principled young man to what is essentially another Clive in training. D'Onofrio is excellent as the stranger that is Doc, a person who offers far more questions than answers and who latches onto Clive with a figurative death grip, one which Clive eventually learns to embrace. So much so that Clive tries to destroy Doc's own little moments of personal happiness. Kazan is also particularly poignant as Sophie, a woman who, like all the others should run as far away from Clive as she can, but who also like all others is captivated by the mysterious magnetism that Clive exudes and finds she cannot leave, nor does she want to.

The various sets by Derek McLane nicely fit the atmosphere of play and the sound design by Shane Rettig works well.

An interesting piece to be sure, Clive presents a fascinating tale of one human being's destruction and degradation, without really including the human factor in the equation. A choice which has both its pluses and minuses in the finished product.

By Jonathan Marc Silverman
Directed by Ethan Hawke

Featuring: Brooks Ashmanskas (2nd Man), Vincent D'Onofrio (Doc) Ethan Hawke (Clive), Stephanie Janssen (1st Woman), Mahira Kakkar (2nd Woman), Zoe Kazan (3rd Woman), Aaron Krohn (1st Man), Dana Lyn (4th Woman), Jonathan Marc Sherman (3rd Man)

Set: Derek McLane
Costumes: Catherine Zuber
Lighting: Jeff Croiter
Sound: Shane Rettig
Music & Sound Sculpture: Gaines
Assistant Director: Marie Master, Sam Creely
Fight Director: David Anzuelo
Production Supervisor: Peter R. Feuchtwanger, PRF Productions
Production Stage Manager: Valerie A. Peterson
Casting: Judy Henderson, C.S.A.
Public Relations: Bridget Klapinski, Seven17 PR

Presented by The New Group
Acorn Theatre
Theatre Row Studios
Actor theatre
410 West 42nd Street
Tickets: 212-239-6200 or www.telecharge.com
Information: www.thenewgroup.org
Closes: March 9, 2013

Running Time: 1 Hour, 45 minutes, no intermission

Video Clip #3 from 'Clive' + chance to win pair of tickets

Happy Valentine's Day! In celebration of passing 1,100 likes on Facebook and in honor of the holiday, We're giving away a pair of tickets to CLIVE this Monday night! All you have to do is like this video or retweet it. The contest ends at 6PM tonight so don't miss out!

Interview: Vincent D'Onofrio | CHAINED


Truly one of the greatest character actors of his generation, Vincent D’Onofrio is the consummate human chameleon who immerses himself into his believable roles. Starburst caught up with him to talk about his latest film, Chained...
Starburst: As an actor, you’ve played good guys, bad guys and troubled souls. How do you prepare for a role?
Vincent D’Onofrio: You need to read the script, find your character and how he influences the story. You ask yourself questions. Get inside his imagination; what’s he all about… then things start to come to you on how you want to portray him. You go back and forth reading and re-reading the script trying to see what works and what doesn’t, developing what kind of character he is and his motivation that’s integral to the plot.
Up until seeing you in the role of Bob in Chained, the one film that really disturbed us was your character as the crystal meth dealer, Pooh-Bear, who took one too many trips to the “honey jar” causing his nose to melt off in The Salton Sea. How the hell did they do that effect?
Those were the days of early CGI. There was a trailer on the set where they had a digital camera set up and they’d put these dots on my nose with a Magic Marker scanning it that took 45 minutes. They can now do a full body scan in 2 minutes with today's technology.
The house where you filmed Chained is isolated and ominous, yet has a welcoming look about it. Do you think the house itself is a reflection of Bob’s character?
Yes. By the way, that’s all Jennifer.
The scenes between you and Eamon Farron are riveting acting as his surrogate father through fear and intimidation.
In acting, there are scenes that are “in-the-moment.” They create emotion in the plot which creates a reaction in the viewer.
If there was one character you could play, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be?
That’s a tough question as there are so many choices. I would say it begins with the story and how good it is, the character’s motivation and goal. That’s what makes me want to be a part of it.
Anything coming up we’ll see you in next?
I’m working with Jennifer again on her next film; A Fall From Grace and few other things coming up.


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

'The Sound of Despair, Played on a Door'


The New Group’s “Clive” makes music out of trash and doorframes

The characters in Clive come and go abruptly, usually driven away by the toxic narcissism of the titular character, played with a peroxided snarl by star and director Ethan Hawke. But the doors through which Clive’s compatriots, enemies, and conquests enter and exit are more than just portals in and out of Clive’s drunken fiefdom; they also serve as unlikely instruments, sound sculptures designed by art world duo GAINES.

The most prominent of those sculptures looks like a deconstructed piano. The strings are pulled taut in front of the audience, and piano hammers lie against them waiting to be thwacked by an actor. Other doors serve as echo chambers, boasting bowls into which performers can murmur, croon, and shout. All of them serve to underscore this adaptation of Bertolt Brecht’s first play Baal, written by Jonathan Marc Sherman and transplanted from 1920s Germany to 1990s Manhattan. Baal becomes Clive, a dissolute rock star who uses and destroys people with the casualness of a sociopath. As he begins to flail, the doors contribute an increasingly melancholy and haunting soundtrack to his self-destruction.

Brothers Latham and Shelby Gaines first collaborated with Hawke when the latter was directing The New Group’s revival of Sam Shepard’s A Lie of the Mind. For that production, the two musicians were on stage, but only their work shares the spotlight with Hawke this time around. “We had fun in our little cubbyhole of Lie of the Mind, Shelby Gaines says. “But when you’re in the show you never see the show, so this was much different and very satisfying.”

For the brothers, part of Clive‘s appeal was the chance to experience their work played by other people. The cast turns to the seven onstage doors and coaxes Americana songs from them—including “Aura Lee,” “I Shall Not Be Moved,” and, in a nod to the Brechtian origins and possibly a wink at The Doors, “Alabama Song”—a stark contrast to the skinny-pants-clad punk that Clive embodies.

“That was a massive part of the job, trying to get the actors to understand how the instruments work and getting them to play,” says Latham Gaines. “But Ethan cast very musical people, and they were very keen, very interested to learn.”

The idea of turning doors into instruments first struck the brothers over a year ago while they were in a group art show, and the idea also appealed to set designer Derek McLane. But the actual instruments and sounds were dictated not by GAINES but by the doors themselves.

“Our experience has been that we could never build the same thing twice,” says Latham Gaines. “Whatever the wood is, the thickness, the history of the door, all these factors make it so we don’t know what we’re going to get. We love that aspect of it. They kinda do what they do, and that’s just how they came out.”

As for crafting the sound sculptures, the brothers start with junk. Really. “It changes depending on the project, but it’s usually a process of finding a big pile of junk and then going through and finding something that speaks to us,” Shelby Gaines says. “It’s a visual thing to start with. And in the back of your mind you’re looking at a structure [and thinking,] ‘Would it be suitable to be strung? Does it have an acoustic quality as well?’”

The onstage results supply the soundtrack to a resolutely dark look at selfishness and sexual despair, filled with death and rape. Hearing and seeing music emanating from battered and weathered doors in real time adds a layer of authentic grime to the proceedings as they play out amidst a sea of booze and waves of regret. As Latham Gaines says, “Was it Edison who said you just need a pile of junk and some imagination to be an inventor?”

Mark Peikert is N.Y. Bureau Chief at Backstage Magazine
Photo by Monique Carboni

Video: Vincent D'Onofrio in 'Spirit of Blue' PSA

Public Service Announcement Features “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” Actor Vincent D’Onofrio

CHICAGO, Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — The Spirit of Blue Foundation announced that it has partnered with Outdoor Channel, America’s Leader In Outdoor TV, on an initiative to raise awareness for the safety concerns of the law enforcement community.  This partnership coincides with Outdoor Channel’s successful launch of its new original series, “Elite Tactical Unit: S.W.A.T.” (ETU).  This one-hour, adrenaline-fueled reality program provides viewers with a glimpse into the mentally rigorous and physically dangerous conditions that professional S.W.A.T. teams are faced with, covering a variety of tactical disciplines from high-risk helicopter rescue missions to close quarters combat.

By airing public service announcements (PSA’s), hosting web banners across their online properties and sharing updates about the Spirit of Blue’s important work through social media, Outdoor Channel will be educating its viewers on the safety concerns of the law enforcement community and assisting the Spirit of Blue with fund raising efforts.  To watch the Spirit of Blue PSA, which features Emmy-nominated actor Vincent D’Onofrio (“Law & Order: Criminal Intent”), visitwww.youtube.com/spiritofbluecharity.

“As tax revenues decrease nearly everywhere, and agency funding is becoming tighter, we believe that the public and industry together have a responsibility to step in and close the gap,” commented Todd Parola, Spirit of Blue Co-Founder and Chairman.  “We can’t allow funding levels to affect an officer’s safety on the job and, with the assistance of Outdoor Channel, we are committed to making a tremendous positive impact.”

“Through our show, ‘Elite Tactical Unit: S.W.A.T’ and the PSA’s, we hope to bring to light the extreme danger that these brave men and women who are part of America’s S.W.A.T. teams face on a daily basis,” said Tom Hornish, President and CEO, Outdoor Channel.  ”We are proud to partner with Spirit of Blue to honor the law enforcement officials that keep us safe every day.”
The Spirit of Blue Foundation works nationally to support the Law Enforcement community through the award of Safety Equipment Grants, funded by both private and corporate donations.  The Foundation is excited to add Outdoor Channel to its growing list of partners, which already includes: Amped Software, Blue Force Gear, Bushmaster Firearms, Magpul Industries, Leupold Tactical Optics, Combat Medical Systems, L3-EOTech, A-TACS Camo, and SentrySafe.  Together, the Foundation and its partners hope to realize a dramatic impact in the safety of the nation’s law enforcement officers.

2012 statistics released by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, in conjunction with Concerns of Police Survivors, revealed the number of U.S. law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty totaled 129, a 22% percent decrease from 2011. Firearm-related deaths reached 49, a decrease of 32% for the same period. While progress is being made, the reality of these statistics and the increasing number of underfunded law enforcement agencies across the country fuel the Spirit of Blue safety grant initiative.

The Spirit of Blue Foundation actively encourages the public at large to honor and appreciate law enforcement officers who serve to protect our communities.  By supporting the Spirit of Blue Foundation, the public can make an impact in the lives of law enforcement officers every day. To learn more about the Spirit of Blue or make a donation, visit www.spiritofblue.com.

About The Spirit of Blue, Inc.The Spirit of Blue, Inc., based out of Chicago, IL, is a 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to the enhancement of officer safety and vitality throughout the law enforcement community by promoting public awareness for their protection and fulfilling safety equipment and training needs.  The Spirit of Blue Foundation develops and executes fundraising campaigns nationally with the support of partner non-profits, corporate sponsors and private equipment manufacturers.  Fundraising proceeds are distributed in the form of Safety Equipment Grants to law enforcement agencies from local to federal levels.  Donations can be made be made anytime atwww.spiritofblue.com or by texting “BLUE” to 41444.