Lin-Manuel Miranda is universally recognized as sunshine in human form. So imagine what an absolute dumpster fire of a human being you must be for Miranda to call you out on Twitter, repeatedly. Of course we’re talking about President* Donald Trump and his absolutely repugnant tweets about the people of Puerto Rico and Carmen Yulín Cruz, the mayor San Juan. ICYMI, you can read them here.
Acclaimed Hamilton creator and American of Puerto Rican descent, Miranda responded with a rage uncharacteristic of his ever-hopeful Twitter persona.
It’s astounding with all your privilege and power your heart and compassion remain so stunted and impoverished. You lavish yourself and sneer at those in need. You could do so much better. https://t.co/JijAcah8ea
We’ve entered the thick of festival season. Telluride’s just concluded, Venice is wrapping up. The Toronto International Film Festival is gearing up, then comes Fantastic Fest in Austin, New York Film Festival, and BFI London Film Festival. With these, comes a slew of trailers ponying for critics’ attention, and by extension award season buzz. Of course, they can’t all be winners. Are you ready for a preview?
Battle of the Sexes
Emma Stone and Steve Carell star in this recreation of the legendary 1973 tennis match that pitted Billie Jean King against Bobby Riggs.
Hot off her Oscar win for La La Land, Stone offers a powerful turn as an unexpected feminist icon. Little Miss Sunshine helmers Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris re-team with Carell for a biopic that could be a heavy hitter in the acting categories. Following Telluride and TIFF, Battle of the Sexes will open in theaters on September 22nd.
Blade of the Immortal
Takashi Miike’s 100th journey is an adaptation of the BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL manga. Manji, a samurai who cannot die, crosses paths with Rin Asano, a young girl whose parents were killed. Manji swears to help Rin Asano avenge her parents’ deaths.
Okay, so Miike’s mental live-action anime adaptation is unlikely to get Oscar buzz. But it’s playing at Fantastic Fest, and us Overlords are stoked about it. Blade of the Immortal hits ambush theaters on November 3rd.
Before We Vanish
The latest from master of art-horror Kiyoshi Kurosawa is perhaps his most mainstream film yet, a throwback to 1980s sci-fi. An advance crew of three aliens journey to Earth in preparation for a complete takeover of the planet. They snatch not only bodies but memories, beliefs, values—everything that defines their conquests as human—leaving only hollow shells, which are all but unrecognizable to their loved ones. This disturbing parable for our present moment, replete with stunning images—including a drone attack and a bit of Clockwork Orange-style murder and mayhem—is also a profoundly mystical affirmation of love as the only form of resistance and salvation.
Following its world premiere at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival, this Japanese horror offering will play NYFF, where we’ll be reviewing it. While no US release has yet been announced, NEON’s got the rights, so expect this genre stunner to be coming your way soon(ish).
Call Me By Your Name
It’s the summer of 1983 in the north of Italy, and Elio Perlman (Timothée Chalamet), a precocious 17- year-old American-Italian boy, spends his days in his family’s 17th century villa transcribing and playing classical music, reading, and flirting with his friend Marzia (Esther Garrel). While Elio’s sophistication and intellectual gifts suggest he is already a fully-fledged adult, there is much that yet remains innocent and unformed about him, particularly about matters of the heart. One day, Oliver (Armie Hammer), a charming American scholar working on his doctorate, arrives as the annual summer intern tasked with helping Elio’s father. Amid the sun-drenched splendor of the setting, Elio and Oliver discover the heady beauty of awakening desire over the course of a summer that will alter their lives forever.
Adapted from André Aciman’s novel, Call Me By Your Name has been thrilling critics since its Sundance debut last January. Director Luca Guadagnino has previously thrilled with the SWINTON vehicles A Bigger Splash and I Am Love. So Pajibans should mark their calendars. After it’s played TIFF and NYFF, Guadagnino’s lauded latest will come to theaters on November 24th.
Starring Carla Gugino and Bruce Greenwood, GERALD’S GAME delivers pitch-perfect performances in a faithful adaptation where the horrors of the mind are much worse than what’s in front of you.
Not all festival fare will draw Oscar attention. But horror fans will likely drool over Mike Flanagan’s Stephen King adaptation. Flanagan’s made a name for himself with horror flicks like Oculus, Hush, and Ouija: Origin of Evil, a prequel that had no right to be as good as it was. Gerald’s Game will hit Fantastic Fest ahead of its Netflix debut on September 29th.
In 1892, a legendary Army captain reluctantly agrees to escort a Cheyenne chief and his family through dangerous territory.
Writer/director Scott Cooper’s follow-up to the gangster biopic Black Mass stars Christian Bale, Rosamund Pike, Wes Studi, Adam Beach, Ben Foster, Jesse Plemons, Rory Cochrane, and Q’orianka Kilcher. This intriguing Western played Telluride ahead of TIFF. Though star-studded, it’s currently seeking U.S. distribution.
The Killing of A Sacred Deer
The life of a brilliant surgeon is thrown into disarray when his friendship with a bizarre teenager threatens the lives of his entire family. Faced with a frightening choice, the man will be forced to assess all that he’s ever done.
Yorgos Lanthimos, the director behind The Lobster, reunites with Colin Farrell, and loops in Nicole Kidman and Alicia Silverstone. We’re sold. Once it’s hit TIFF, Fantastic Fest, and London, The Killing of A Sacred Deer will open in select theaters on October 27th.
Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut is a portrait of an artistically inclined young woman (Saoirse Ronan) trying to define herself in the shadow of her mother (Laurie Metcalf) and searching for an escape route from her hometown of Sacramento.
Gerwig made a name for herself with stirring turns in films like Frances Ha, Nights and Weekends, Damsels In Distress and 20th Century Women. Now, the acclaimed actress turns to writing and directing with this intriguing coming-of-age dramedy that stars Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, and Timothée Chalamet. Following its premieres at Telluride, TIFF and NYFF, the already buzzed about Lady Bird will hit theaters on November 10th.
Last Flag Flying
In Richard Linklater’s lyrical road movie, as funny as it is heartbreaking, three aging Vietnam-era Navy vets—soft-spoken Doc (Steve Carell), unhinged and unfiltered Sal (Bryan Cranston), and quietly measured Mueller (Laurence Fishburne)—reunite to perform a sacred task: the proper burial of Doc’s only child, who has been killed in the early days of the Iraq invasion.
Linklater’s bittersweet follow-up to Everybody Wants Some!! will make its world premiere at the New York Film Festival at the end of this month, before opening in theaters November 3rd. Can your heart handle it?
The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
Noah Baumbach revisits the terrain of family vanities and warring attachments that he began exploring with The Squid and the Whale in this intricately plotted story of three middle-aged siblings (Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, and Elizabeth Marvel) coping with their strong-willed father (Dustin Hoffman) and the flightiness of his wife (Emma Thompson).
Techinically this is an Adam Sandler/Netflix movie. But it’s written and directed by Baumbach and premiered at Cannes ahead of its NYFF presentation. So, it can’t be that bad. Right? Right!? The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) hits Netflix on October 13th.
Set against the backdrop of the Mississippi Delta during the Jim Crow era after World War II, Mudbound is both a timeless and timely film following two families — one black, one white — bound together by the hardships of farm life.
This striking historical drama marks writer/director Dee Rees’ long-awaited theatrical follow-up to her critically heralded debut Pariah. Starring Carey Mulligan, Mary J. Blige, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Jason Clarke, Rob Morgan, and Jonathan Banks, Mudbound won rave reviews out Sundance, and will play at TIFF and NYFF before hitting Netflix and select theaters on November 17th.
The Shape of Water
At the height of the Cold War, circa 1962, two workers in a high-tech US government laboratory (Sally Hawkins and Oscar winner Octavia Spencer) discover a terrifying secret experiment, in this otherworldly fairytale from Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth).
I’m deeply, deeply jealous of every single person who gets to see this before I do. Doug Jones, Michael Shannon, and Richard Jenkins also star in del Toro’s alluring follow-up to his woefully underrated Crimson Peak. After playing at festivals in Venice, Toronto, Stiges, and London, The Shape of Water will finally open on December 8th.
Christian is the respected curator of a contemporary art museum, a divorced but devoted father of two who drives an electric car and supports good causes. His next show is «The Square», an installation which invites passersby to altruism, reminding them of their role as responsible fellow human beings. But sometimes, it is difficult to live up to your own ideals: Christian’s foolish response to the theft of his phone drags him into shameful situations. Meanwhile, the museum’s PR agency has created an unexpected campaign for «The Square». The response is overblown and sends Christian, as well as the museum, into an existential crisis.
Written and directed by Ruben Östlund, this satirical drama starring Claes Bang, Elisabeth Moss, Dominic West, and Terry Notary was Winner Palme d’Or at Cannes Film Festival 2017. And sure, it sounds dry, but this trailer gives you a taste of its bizarre and biting brand of humor. The Square will play at TIFF and NYFF before opening in theaters October 27th.
Thelma, a shy young student, has just left her religious family in a small town on the west coast of Norway to study at a university in Oslo. While at the library one day, she experiences a violent, unexpected seizure. Soon after, she finds herself intensely drawn toward Anja, a beautiful young student who reciprocates Thelma’s powerful attraction. As the semester continues, Thelma becomes increasingly overwhelmed by her intense feelings for Anja — feelings she doesn’t dare acknowledge, even to herself — while at the same time experiencing even more extreme seizures. As it becomes clearer that the seizures are a symptom of inexplicable, often dangerous, supernatural abilities, Thelma is confronted with tragic secrets of her past, and the terrifying implications of her powers.
You had me by implying «supernatural lesbian thriller.» And I don’t get what’s going on with this poster, but I’m into it. Following TIFF, Fantastic Fest, and NYFF, Thelma will open on November 10th.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
A grieving mother takes drastic measures in an attempt to catch her daughter’s killer. Challenging the police to solve the case, she posts a series of billboards that threaten the fabric of rural, Missouri.
Only In Bruges writer/director Martin McDonagh could take a premise this dark and spin it into something hilarious, yet heartbreaking. Sam Rockwell, Peter Dinklage, Woody Harrelson, John Hawkes, and Caleb Landry Jones co-star in this ensemble black-comedy. But it’s Frances McDormand who’ll likely be the focus of its award season campaign, holding it down as a gruff, no shit taking, crotch-kicking mom on a mission. Once its thrilled audiences at TIFF, Fantastic Fest and London, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri will come to theaters on November 10th.
In 1977, following the death of his single mother, Ben (Oakes Fegley) loses his hearing in a freak accident and makes his way from Minnesota to New York, hoping to learn about the father he has never met. A half-century earlier, another deaf 12-year-old, Rose (Millicent Simmonds), flees her restrictive Hoboken home, captivated by the bustle and romance of the nearby big city. Each of these parallel adventures, unfolding largely without dialogue, is an exuberant love letter to a different bygone era of New York. The mystery of how they ultimately converge, which involves Julianne Moore in a lovely dual role, provides the film’s emotional core.
Fans of the YA novel on which this movie is based will be happy to hear its author Brian Selznick penned Wonderstruck‘s screenplay. Aside from boasting Moore and Michelle Williams, Haynes’s latest is drawing buzz, because he’s the filmmaker wwho’s brought us such beautiful, heart-pummeling films as Far From Heaven, Carol and Velvet Goldmine. Well, that and its rave reviews out of Cannes, Melbourne, Locarno, San Sebastián and Telluride. Following its bow at NYFF, Wonderstruck will come to theaters on October 20th.
Plot synopses pulled from festival websites, IMDB, and press releases.
To say it’s hard for a woman to break through behind the scenes in Hollywood is an understatement. Of course, it’s also hard for women to succeed in Silicon Valley. Or the White House. Look, sometimes it just sucks to be a woman in general.
But especially in Hollywood, ok. A point that has become abundantly clear this week, thanks to two stories that have been making the rounds. Ready for your Friday afternoon rage-read? Sexism, take it awayyyyy!
First up: fuck The Simpsons. Ok, maybe not the show as an entire entity. Don’t have a cow, etc. etc. But fuck some of the behind-the-scenes garbage that occurred, particularly during the early seasons. Cartoonist Mimi Pond recently spoke to Jezebel about her upcoming graphic novel, and the conversation circled around to her time writing for the long-running cartoon. To be clear — she wrote only one episode. It turned out to be the very first episode, thanks to a fluke with the scheduling, but in a way she helped launch the show that would go on to become a singular cultural phenomenon. And then she was never invited to join the staff or contribute in any additional way.
You may be wondering why. And so was she. But she did eventually discover the reason — her gender. Let’s hear her explain it, shall we?
And it wasn’t until years later that I found out that Sam Simon, who was the showrunner, didn’t want any women around because he was going through a divorce. It had remained a boys’ club for a good long time. I feel like I was just as qualified as anyone else who came along and got hired on the show, and it was just because I was a woman that I was, you know, not allowed entry into that club.
Gosh, emotional men being emotional! Say it ain’t so! Clearly not being around women in the workplace is the answer. We should really respect the guy for prioritizing his own mental health above the career advancement of qualified artists, amirite?
But, you know, that happened almost 3 decades ago (related: I’m feeling old now). Surely things have gotten better, right?
Well, not if you’re an assistant who wanted to observe A Day Without a Woman on March 8th without your talent manager boss getting huffy. Rosette Laursen recently shared some disturbing emails she inadvertently received from her former boss, Michael Einfeld (who meant to share his thoughts with two of her male coworkers but instead sent them to the entire team — Laursen included). His response, with spelling errors fixed, went thusly: «Are you f—ing kidding me. At the end of pilot season. Someone should sew her vagina shut. I’m never hiring a girl ever again.»
Oh but wait! There’s more, thanks to an additional email! «No bonus for anyone that strikes or leaves early in pilot season. No one is striking in show business we are all against Trump. And women are considered diverse and being shoved in as writer and directors. Zach who is a Jewish male is being pushed out. Uppity Selfish C-t. Heather went to work. I’m sure anyone at a casting office or agency would be fired.»
Please remember, this was all in response to a subordinate staff member requesting the option of observing International Women’s Day. Kinda proves the point of the whole event, don’t it?
To be fair, Einfeld did quickly realize just how fucked up that was… but he didn’t make things better. He texted an apology to Laursen when he realized, you know, that his own assistant saw him recommend her vagina get sewn shut. But the apology somehow managed to be kind of MORE offensive? You decide: «I apologize for venting like a misogynistic faggot,» he said. «I was letting off steam I didn’t mean to hit reply all. I’m an a-hole. If you come back we can play Nazi death camp. You can beat me and put me in the oven. Or feed me cabbage and lock me in the shower. I am truly sorry.»
Yeah, so Laursen quit. Obviously. And decided to pursue legal action. But when Einfeld didn’t respond to her lawyers, she took her case to the court of public opinion by posting her receipts on Facebook. Which certainly got her old boss to pay attention! Along with, you know, the media.
Last night, Einfeld emailed a response to the controversy to his clients, friends, and colleagues. As far as mea culpas go, it’s pretty good. But it isn’t clear if he’s tried to say any of this to Laursen herself.
«Let me say without reservation — I am sorry. I used language that was tasteless, humorless and completely inexcusable. I believe deeply in workplace diversity regardless of race, gender, creed or sexual orientation, and I am mortified that the things I have said have worked against my commitment to inclusion. As I’ve searched for a response to all this, what I’ve discovered is that words fall woefully short of my extreme remorse — I am so sorry,» Einfeld wrote. «I will be undertaking some obviously needed introspection, and want to thank those of you who have expressed a willingness to standby me. To those that feel they need space from me — I am heartbroken but understand. If it were possible, I wouldn’t mind space from myself right now. Again, to everyone — I am sorry. If this is something you are willing to hear from me in person please call, or send me a note and I’ll call you. I am devastated, and hope in time you will consider giving me the chance to earn your forgiveness.»
So, that happened. But lest you think it’s all doom and gloom for ladies trying to get ahead behind the camera, this week also brought a rather delightful bit of news. At the TCAs, FX hosted a panel of seven female directors who have gotten a leg up in the industry thanks to Ryan Murphy’s Half foundation. Launched just last year, Half aims to have women, people of color, and members of the LGBT community account for 50 percent of all director positions, in addition to outreach efforts and mentorships to promote diversity.
Many of the women on the panel, including Rachel Goldberg, Alexis Ostrander, and Liza Johnson, have gotten their biggest opportunities by directing episodes of Murphy shows or other FX properties. And a big topic was the catch-22 that occurs when you’re looking for your big break. Studios won’t let you helm a film without at least a TV episode on your resume, but you can’t direct a TV episode without showing feature film experience. Basically, no one wants to be the first to take a risk and give a new voice a chance, which is why having a foundation like Half is so important to help open up opportunities.
Regarding having Murphy as an ally, Goldberg said: «He told me, ’50 year-old white men make chances, and I’m now a 50 year-old white man, so I’ll make changes.’ And he did. He shows you can give these women opportunities, and they won’t fuck it up. It’s ok to take the risk.»
Did you somehow miss all the Instagram Father’s Day posts from the sports world today? No worries, we gathered them all up for a nice holiday gallery. Dwyane Wade’s family holding a fashion shoot, Matt Barnes and his boys, family man Tom Brady in the park, and Antonio Cromartie’s football team are a few of the notable highlights.
Sidenote: This isn’t a competition, but Marcus Stroman’s dad is still the best.
Like death, taxes, and the fact 2017 is a raging trashfire, there’s something else we can always rely on: Katy Perry and Taylor Swift’s feud will never die. As we’re all painfully aware at this point, the drama began when in Taylor’s infamous 2014 Rolling Stone interview, she claimed another female artist (who literally everyone quickly deduced was Katy) had stolen backup dancers away from her and therefore deliberately sabotaged her upcoming tour, and then wrote her diss track, «Bad Blood,» about said artist. The two have shared a few not-so-subtle barbs back and forth ever since, but it’s safe to say it’s all out on the table now thanks to Katy’s publicity tour for her upcoming album, Witness. See everything she’s said about the situation over the past few months below.
«Don’t come for me.»
In early May, Katy sat down with Entertainment Weekly for a discussion about Witness, which inevitably led to a question about what she thinks of «Bad Blood» and if she believes it’s about her. «Well, that’s not my question to answer — if it’s about me,» she replied. «I think [my new album] is a very empowered record. There is no one thing that’s calling out any one person.» She also made it clear that nobody should mistake that silence for not saying anything at all. «One thing to note is: you can’t mistake kindness for weakness and don’t come for me. Anyone. Anyone. Anyone,» she explained. «And that’s not to any one person and don’t quote me that it is, because it’s not. It’s not about that. Honestly, when women come together and they decide to unite, this world is going to be a better place. Period, end of story. But let me say this: everything has a reaction or a consequence, so don’t forget about that, OK, honey . . . If people want to connect and be healed and feel vulnerable and feel empowered and strong, God bless and here it is.»
Although she denied she had any diss tracks of her own in the works, she released «Swish, Swish» not long after her interview, which sure sounds like it’s a shot at Taylor.
«She started it, and it’s time for her to finish it.»
The «Chained to the Rhythm» singer was completely candid about why she and «the Regina George in sheep’s clothing» have beef during her Carpool Karaoke video with James Corden in May. Katy fully admitted that «There’s a situation. [Taylor] started it, and it’s time for her to finish it.» She added that she never «stole» backup dancers from Taylor and then opened up about her reaction to «Bad Blood.» «I do the right thing any time that it feels like a fumble. It was a full shutdown, and then she writes a song about me,» she said. «And I’m like, ‘OK, cool, cool, cool. That’s how you want to deal with it? Karma!'» She also made sure to note that she’s «ready for that BS to be done.»
«There are three sides of every story: one, two, and the truth.»
In an interview with NME (which doesn’t fully drop until June 9), Katy tried to explain why she brought up the feud at all with James Corden. «Well, [Late Late Show host] James Corden makes me and the whole world feel very safe,» she said. «No one has asked me about my side of the story, and there are three sides of every story: one, two, and the truth.» The 32-year-old also wanted to reiterate her previous assertion that no one should «come for» her. «I mean, I’m not Buddha — things irritate me. I wish that I could turn the other cheek every single time, but I’m also not a pushover, you know? Especially when someone tries to assassinate my character with little girls [her fans]. That’s so messed up!»
Another layer to the «Bad Blood» drama was that Taylor hired Katy’s longtime collaborator Max Martin to help write the song, which Katy had yet to address until her chat with NME. «I can’t speak for [Max], but he didn’t know [who «Bad Blood» was about],» she said. «I’m not supposed to tell him what he can and can’t do. I’m very fair; I’m super-duper fair, and I’m not one of those people who’s like, ‘You can’t do that because I don’t like that person’. Just, like, you do you, make your own choices . . . I’m not his mother.»
Pretty much everyone from the sports world took to social media to celebrate their moms for Mother’s Day, so we decided to compile them all for a nice holiday gallery. Giselle on a horse, baby JJ Watt, Russell Wilson claiming Future’s kids, and Dwyane Wade’s ridiculous fashion are just a few of the notable highlights.
Sidenote: Enjoy this today, because we’re back to our usual WAGfest tomorrow.
I just want to give Kentucky fans and all of the #BBN a standing ovation for their performance this week. I’m not sure we’ve ever seen a stronger week of frat house banners since they became popular on the internet. That includes Saturdays in the fall where they really ramp up. I’ve been doing my research all day and I keep seeing new ones. It’s unbelievably impressive and if any fan base deserves a Sweet Sixteen win tonight it’s them.
So here’s the final roundup of banners we’ve seen the last few days before Kentucky plays UCLA. If we see any more new ones before tip-off they will be added here, and if you see any that aren’t posted here you can send them to @bustedcoverage or @bustedcollege on Twitter. Some of the new banners are in the gallery above and others are right here below.
Sure, it wasn’t nearly as awkward (or aggressive) as LeBron James’ first return to Cleveland, but Thunder fans didn’t disappoint with their cupcake-politically charged Durant fan signs. Oklahomans are straight pissed, and will probably continue to hold this disdain for KD unless he randomly decides to return down the line.
Check out the most petty OKC fan signs in the gallery above.
After unloading a chorus of boos on the commissioner during the trophy presentation, Pats fans dug in one more time today by coming up with a plethora of anti-Goodell posters. Pretty much all of them are rated R, except for one guy who’s worried about the price of guacamole.