The Hot Blog Archive for September, 2007

Last Word On The Removed Entry

A new day, new information on the allegedly hacked e-mails that Roger Friedman has now said are, “all fake.”
Frankly, I have no idea whether they are fake or not. There are details in the e-mails, which for someone out to embarrass Friedman, me, and others mentioned would be odd to fake the way they are faked, such as leaving out the actual names of certain people who are referred to and actually are friends of Roger’s in situations they may well have encountered. (I will not be naming them here. No one else needs to have added embarrassment.)
In any case, the thickening of the story is that they whole mess apparently came from Yes, the great success. The great and important step forward for the internet, owned by Time-Warner and AOL. Sister company to Entertainment Weekly and People. The company that has people talking about Harvey Levin as though he is now something other than another scumbag who is happy to live off of the pain of others as a gossip monger.
It has long been a tradition in my work on the web to own ugliness by acknowledging it and moving on. And in this case, just because it is embarrassing to me that anyone – whether the people named in these e-mails or some con artists – would spew these kind of absurdities, it is no reason for me not to treat them as openly as I would were it someone else and I was posting on principle.
So… here is the offending excerpt about me… I note again that Mr Friedman has called the e-mails fake and I can confirm that every single fact about me


I Removed A Comment

I am now wasting time, which I hate, on some form of idiocy which I feel compelled to police.
As many of you know, my policy is not to remove comments and I have never banned anyone from this blog.
Tonight, I came home to an entry that claimed that Roger Friedman’s e-mail had been hacked and that there was some absurd crap about me, Sharon Waxman, and others in some alleged e-mail gossip session he had with some guy.
I removed the comment for two reasons. 1) The attack on me is so factually inaccurate on its face – forget the insane, libelous part – that allowing myself to be in a position to somehow defend a charge like this is insane. 2) I have no idea whether these e-mails really are Roger Friedman’s and if they are not, they are a form of libel against him… also unacceptable.
I have sent a note to the poster and will eventually find out whether the e-mail he is registered under is real or not. And I will have to waste more time trying to find out where this alleged set of e-mails came from and may be published.
In addition, if the e-mails are real, the apparent rumor about me is so absurd that even Roger wouldn’t make that up… but there is someone who might have. And that makes me heartsick. And it’s not Jeffrey Wells, who spins reality, but doesn’t tend to lie about other people.
There is another professional gossip who has overtly lied about me and my behavior in the past. Ah, to live a life of getting restraining orders. Not a life I want to be living. But it certainly makes me more and more sympathetic to the actual public figures who live with this every day.
More as it develops…


BYOB 2 – Bring Your Own Blog


A Semi-Anonymous Voice, Craving Notice

The funniest things about Peter Bart


The Darjeeling Short Lands A Week Before The NYFF

“Hotel Chevalier” represents a novel approach to generating buzz for “Darjeeling,” a quirky film from Fox Searchlight that doesn’t have a powerhouse marketing budget. The main film is about three brothers — played by Owen Wilson, Jason Schwartzman and Adrien Brody — who take a comic “spiritual journey” through India after their father’s death. Like Mr. Anderson’s past films, the new picture isn’t easily summarized or boiled down to an easy selling point.
“Hotel Chevalier,” meanwhile, is a prequel of sorts that was made a year before “Darjeeling” even began filming. It takes place entirely in the Paris hotel room of Mr. Schwartzman’s character and includes information that later becomes relevant in “Darjeeling.” The short film’s premiere will be Tuesday night at Apple stores in New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Santa Monica, Calif. Then, starting Wednesday, it will be available as a free download on Apple Inc.’s iTunes Web site.
Before a recent press screening, Fox Searchlight, which says it has no financial stake in “Chevalier,” distributed a statement from Mr. Anderson saying it was his goal to “get every person who goes to [“The Darjeeling Limited”] to see the short first.” Mr. Anderson may have a hook: The short co-stars Natalie Portman, who appears in an extended nude scene — but whose character makes just a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo in “The Darjeeling Limited.”

The Rest…
Here is the LAT version
What is fascinating and inaccurate in both stories is the degree of sex and nudity. As I wrote before, there is no full frontal anything. The most sexy moment with Ms Portman is a pose she strikes with her rib cage bared and showing through her side, and her butt extended, but pretty much a profile with all the naughty bits covered. It is less nude than the pregnant Demi Moore on the cover of Vanity Fair… not much different than Johanson and Knightley on the cover of same.
But that misstatement won’t do any good, since people will have the short on their computers by mid-week.
And Anderson’s goal should be to get all people who see the short to see the film, not the other way around, no?


Sunday Estimates by Klady

First note, A Correction – Len Klady’s Friday Estimates had The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford at 15 screens when today, he is at the 5 that has been reported elsewhere. Our apologies to our readers.
And then…
Nothing a whole lot else to talk about.
The big exclusive openings of Into The Wild and Jesse James are very nice


Friday Estimate by Klady

As is so often the case, both tracking and box office weight guessers underestimate the junk and overestimate the quality stuff. If there is anything consistent about tracking and its misuse, it is this.
Look for the Resident Evil sequel to open a bit better than the last sequel, assuring


Question Of The Day – Wither DreamAmount

How many errors of fact can you find in this very tardy L.A. Times article on DreamWorks vs Paramount?
Okay… now how many events of spin can you find in the piece, which after a Brad Grey interview is interestingly willing to shove the blame on poor, old, crazy Sumner?
I don’t have the time to deconstruct right now… but it’s coming.
I will offer my favorite piece of spin before I post and run… In seven years of an 8% distribution deal with DreamWorks Animation (already 18 months old, btw) that Paramount paid for in an additional high 8-figure transaction, Paramount – Ms Eller argues – could earn as much from each DWA movie as it did from Shrek The Third for a seven year potential total of $800 million.
WOW! The giant hairy balls on that one!!!
The story in all these stories, my friends, is who is telling their bestest versions of the stories and who is allowing it.


Box Office Hell



22 Weeks To Oscar – Post-Toronto Column

It would be easy to shrug this notion off and say,


Darjeeling Preview Limited

I will get into The Darjeeling Limited a little later, but…
Perhaps the most reportable part of the film was the little 5 minute (roughly) pre-film film that Wes Anderson did with Jason Schwartzman that was shown last night at the Fox lot screening of the film… and is not expected to be a part of the theatrical release of the film.
The short takes place just before the brothers get on the train and features on of Schwartzman’s Jack’s ex-girlfriends… played by Natalie Portman. Yes, internet geeks, another Natalie Portman scene involving sex, a naked Portman, and no frontal nudity.
But it is actually quite compelling… almost as though Anderson is painting Portman, as so many artists seem to want to do. You have Mike Nichols view of her, The Wachowski view of her, Wong Kar Wai’s view of her, etc. And the way Anderson uses her here is particularly painter-like… quite compelling… quite beautiful… quite sexy… but not about the personal bits.
Ironically, this is the part of the film that the internet will most desire… and will probably have to wait for DVD to see… unless Searchlight is cleverly going to let this segment loose on the web… where it will serve as a rather approproiate preview of the bigger film.
What wasn’t compelling, by the way, is that the short was played as though it was the feature and we were “treated” to a 10 minute break afterwards before the main film began. That felt rather pretentious. But the model for this – which may or may not be in Anderson’s lexicon – is Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life which had a short before the film which eventually invaded the feature a little over an hour into the movie.
Either way, nice to see anyone pushing the form in the mainstream.


BYOB 1 – Bring Your Own Blog

A not-new, but newly structured idea for this blog.
I’m not going to bother telling you to be nice every time or saying much of anything.
It’s open space to initiate whatever chat you want to have with your fellow commenters. I will try to keep one open and near the top of the page often.


Just A Little Sneak Peek

Had a very pleasant chat today with Lars & The Real Girl director Craig Gillespie and his star, Ryan Gosling. The whole conversation, along with another chat with co-stars Emily Mortimer and Patricia Clarkson, will be online in a week or two. But for the moment, here is a snippet with Ryan in glorious QuickTime.


The More Things Change…

I believe Mr. Scott actually gets his image even closer to the Rockwell…


Armond Does Jesse

Every once in a while, I feel like Armond White is speaking for me in ways that I don’t speak.
Here is an excerpt of his review of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford


The Hot Blog

Quote Unquotesee all »

The Atlantic: You saw that the Academy Awards recently held up your 2001 acceptance speech as the Platonic ideal of an Oscar speech. Did you have a reaction?

Soderbergh: Shock and dismay. When that popped up and people started texting me about it, I said, “Oh, it’s too bad I’m not there to tell the story of how that took place.” Well. I was not sober at the time. And I had nothing prepared because I knew I wasn’t going to win [Best Director for Traffic]. I figured Ridley, Ang or Daldry would win. So I was hitting the bar pretty hard, having a great night, feeling super-relaxed because I don’t have to get up there. So the combination of a 0.4 blood alcohol level and lack of preparation resulted in me, in my state of drunkenness crossed with adrenaline surge. I was coherent enough to know that [if I tried to thank everyone], that way lies destruction. So I went the other way. There were some people who appreciated that, and there were some people who really wanted to hear their names said, and I had to apologize to them.
~ Steven Soderbergh


“I have made few films in a way. I never made action films. I never made science fiction films. I never made, really, very complicated settings, because I had modest ambitions. I knew they would never trust me to have the budget to do something different, so my mind is more focused on things I know. So they were always mental adventures I wanted to approach and share. Working for cinema with no – not only no money, but also no ambition for money. I was happy and proud [to receive the honorary Oscar] because of that, that [the Academy] could understand what kind of work I have done over 60 years. I stayed faithful to the ideal of sharing emotion, impressions, and mostly because I have so much empathy for other people that I approach people who are not really spoken about. I have 65 years of work in my bag, and when I put the bag down, what comes out? It’s really the desire of finding links and relationships with different kinds of people. I never made a film about the bourgeoisie, about rich people. about nobility. My choices have been to show people that are, in a way, more common and see that each of them has something special and interesting, rare and beautiful. It’s my natural way of looking at people. I didn’t fight my instincts. And maybe that has been appreciated in the famous circle of Hollywood.“

Agnes Varda