Remembering filmmaker Peter Mays 1

Film
Turn, by Peter Mays, screening March 31 Peter Mays, a sweet soul who passed away on March 4, 2019, was a Los Angeles treasure. Peter grew up in Los Angeles and attended UCLA where he majored in painting and minored in mathematics. I had the pleasure of some holiday meals with him hosted by his ...

‘Cher’-ing West Side Story 2

Film
I like her as George Chakiris. Others prefer her as Rita Moreno. (Hey, different strokes for different folks.) She also plays Russ Tamblyn and Natalie Wood. In this gender-bending, cross-dressing, stage-hogging, scene-stealing, performance-arting, one-woman show-ing, television tour-de-force, Cher does it all. Never a shrinking violet, she bursts forth as Tony/Maria/Bernardo/Anita in a West Side Story ...

Albert Finney, a renegade who influenced a generation of actors 1

Film
Albert Finney, Night Must Fall (1964) Our very good friend of arts·meme, Mike Kaplan, sends a heartfelt tribute to the great English actor who passed away on February 7, 2019. Writes Mike, Albert Finney (1936-2019) was a giant talent. His vibrant, unpredictable, mischievous, challenging presence was as seismic a change for a generation of actors ...

Traffic-distraction: Cunningham dancers displayed on high

Dance · Film
They move faster than L.A. traffic and they are infinitely more beautiful. From February 4 – 17 excerpts from Scenario and Views on Camera, filmed by Charlie Atlas, are spooling on a big distracting screen outside the Marriott Hotel across from LA Live. On Olympic, east of the 110, west of Figueroa, guys. The screen ...

Our pick for Black History month: Lena Horne tributes

Film · Music
Author James Gavin, who penned “Stormy Weather: The Life Of Lena Horne” will explore the life and career of a legendary superstar as part of Black History month February 13. The fun and informative event will take place at The Barn, with all the barn animals. And that proudly includes ME. Lena Horne was one ...

Gregory Hines forever

Dance · Film
The United States Postal Service, a valued part of our Federal government, has honored a great American dancer by issuing its 42nd stamp in the Black Heritage series featuring an image of Gregory Hines (1946–2003). Hines was a monster-contributor to the dance field. Nominated for Tony Awards in the 1970s for three Broadway musicals — ...

Standout artist round-robin

Film · Music

To be young, gifted & Aretha Franklin: Queen of Soul in ‘Amazing Grace’

Film · Music
“Amazing Grace,” with two-million vinyl discs exiting record stores, was the top-selling gospel record of all time and Aretha Franklin‘s top-selling album. Released in June 1972, the album coincided with the very same month I graduated from an all-white high school in suburban Pittsburgh. Right around that time, on Sunday afternoons, I used my new ...

“Mary Poppins, step in time!” cries Van Dyke to Breaux & Wood choreography 4

Dance · Film
Kick the knees up! Step in time Votes for women! Step in time It’s the master! Step in time Step in time. As we enter movie theaters in anticipation of the fun and joy director Rob Marshall and his choreography partner, John DeLuca, have in store for Mary Poppins Returns, let’s step in time … ...

Marilyn could play comedy … or tragedy … according to her directors

Film
Henry Hathaway, on MM and high drama: I think her whole life might have changed in Darryl Zanuck would have let her  … I wanted to do Of Human Bondage with Marilyn and Jimmy Dean way back then … because after I did that picture with her [Niagra] I found her marvelous to work with, ...