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Podcast: Wachowskis are strange, but Aardman is ascending

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Sat, 07/02/2015 - 16:12

Join Mark Searby, Amon Warmann and host Stuart O'Connor for reviews of the big new releases on offer in UK cinemas this week: Selma, Love Is Strange, Shaun The Sheep Movie, The Interview and Jupiter Ascending.

You can listen to and download the podcast – or subscribe to it on iTunes ... plus you can follow us on Twitter and join us on Facebook.

PubQuest: We're looking to take the Screenjabber Pubcast on the road, and want your input. Know a great pub in London we should visit to record the show? Drop us a line and let us know.

WriterQuest: We're seeking some more writers, particularly those who want to cover video games for us. Please get in touch if you're keen.

| Podcast: Wachowskis are strange, but Aardman is ascending | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Stuart OConnor's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Small-Screen Jabber 7-13 February

Posted by Louise Bolotin | Fri, 06/02/2015 - 19:33

By Louise Bolotin

Drama
For the second week in a row, there has been no new drama series launching, with the exception of the Swedish 30 Degrees in February (Friday, Sky Arts 1, 9pm). Not so much Scandi-noir as Scandi-hols. A mixed bunch of Swedes, all fed up with the cold and their lives, head off to Thailand’s warm, sandy beaches in search of adventures and changing their lives. Written by Anders Weidemann, critically acclaimed in Scandinavia and nominated for an International Emmy in 2014, 30 Degrees unfolds languidly but is compelling as it explores whether anyone can really leave their past behind.

Factual
The Nazis planned to build their own Jurassic Park – a little-known fact. Hitler’s Hunting Experiment (Sat, More4, 9pm) tells the bizarre story of Hitler’s dream to breed extinct animals in an ambitious programme of genetic manipulation, so that his Aryan master race would be able to hunt for fun in a giant game park. Jolyon Rubinstein is on a quest to discover why the Facebook generation have voter apathy in An Idiot’s Guide to Politics (Wed, BBC3, 9pm). It’s not that our youth are disengaged – far from it. They may reject the ballot box but they are nonetheless politically active. Fewer than 25% of under-25s intend to vote in May. Political prankster Rubinstein tries to fundraise himself a dinner with the prime minister and also torments Ukip’s Nigel Farage to demonstrate why young people loathe politicians.

Arts
Ahead of the Oscars, glittering prizes will be handed out at the British Academy Film Awards (Sun, BBC1, 9pm). Your compere for this most prestigious ceremony for homegrown talent is Stephen Fry and the list of nominees includes Eddie Redmayne (above) and Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything), Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game), Michael Keaton (Birdman) and Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel. The smart money is on Redmayne and his film about Stephen Hawking, but as I got Andy Murray winning the Australian Open last weekend very wrong you may well have other ideas. There’s a welcome return for Mark Lawson Talks to… (Sun, BBC4, 8pm), in which he interviews one actor, artist or writer in depth for an hour. First in the opposite chair is Celia Imrie, one of Victoria Woods’ regular collaborators – she discusses her very distinguished career and her debut novel, and is as charming and funny as you’d expect.

Comedy
Monday night sees a triple bill of laughter. Asylum (BBC4, 9pm) is a new sitcom about whistleblowing asylum seeker Dan Herne (played by Ben Millar), who has been holed up in the El Rican embassy for a year, with a poke at Julian Assange’s own situation as a guest of the Ecuadorian ambassador. Before long, the self-styled harbinger of justice is joined by minor hacker Ludo Backslash (a nod to Kim Dotcom) and the pair jostle to relieve their boredom. Character-led and laidback, it’s nonetheless biting in its satirical take on real events based in the online world. It’s followed by series two of Bob Servant (BBC4, 9.30pm), the unlikely cheeseburger tycoon turned MP, played by Brian Cox. It’s been two years since the ranty politician was last on our screens, but Servant has given up the back benches and returned to flogging burgers from a van on the seafront of his former constituency Broughty Ferry. Daniela Nardini is the jobsworth council official trying to nail him on health and safety breaches. American standup John Oliver launches a new series of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (Sky Atlantic, 11.10pm), his weekly take on US current affairs that sees him riffing effortlessly and at length.

Entertainment
As Valentine’s Day looms, chef Heston Blumenthal takes up the challenge to cook a special dinner in Heston’s Recipe for Romance (Mon, C4, 9pm). His five courses all contain chocolate, which would be enough for me to flee the Fat Duck and head to the nearest chippy. Naturally, molecular gastronomy plays its role – he creates a Cupid cocktail whose fragrance is designed to trigger romantic memories and a pair of chilli “apples” served with a live snake. Five lucky couples are his lovestruck guinea pigs. The Great Comic Relief Bake Off (wed, BBC1, 8pm) returns to The Tent to raise cash for the forthcoming telethon. In a slight format change to 2013, there won’t be a finale to crown the star star baker, but each team of four celebs will compete against each other. Expect mess and inedible cakes. In the first week Dame Edna Everage battles it out with Joanna Lumley, Lulu and Jennifer Saunders.

Travel
Broadcaster John Sergeant takes to the water in Barging Around Britain (Fri, ITV, 8pm), an eight-part ramble along some of the UK’s finest canals. It’s a bit like Michael Portillo’s railway trips, with Sergeant stopping off hither and thither to explore their history and visit interesting places. First up is the UK’s longest canal – the Leeds-Liverpool, which cuts its swathe across the Pennine to link two historic industrial cities. Chef Giorgio Locatelli teams up with art historian Andrew Graham-Dixon for a new three-part series of Italy Unpacked (Fri, BBC2, 9pm). They start out from the instep of Italy’s mainland “foot” to explore the dramatic east coast, which includes the Matera UN World Heritage site at Basilicata, and try regional food specialities.

| Small-Screen Jabber 7-13 February | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Louise Bolotin's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Win a copy of A Perfect Man on DVD

Posted by Competitions | Thu, 05/02/2015 - 17:10

Featuring the star of Ray Donovan, Salt and X-Men: Origins, A Perfect Man comes to DVD on February 9, making it the ideal gift this Valentine’s Day. To celebrate its release, we are offering THREE readers the chance to take home a copy of A Perfect Man on DVD.

Since the day they met, James (Liev Schreiber) and Nina (Jeanne Tripplehorn) have challenged, infuriated, enraged and adored each other completely. They are seemingly the poster couple for the perfect marriage, until, one day, Nina sees James embracing her best friend. Suddenly, her world falls apart and she is left questioning the very foundation of their marriage.

Believing she has nothing to lose, Nina pretends to be another woman, striking up a relationship over the phone with her husband in an attempt to prove his infidelity.

However, it is only when she is certain that her womanising husband has fallen in love with her that Nina must face her true feelings and decide whether to walk away or give love another chance

For a chance to win, just follow @Screenjabber on Twitter and tweet the following text:

Follow @Screenjabber and RT for a chance to win A Perfect Man on Blu-ray/DVD.

For an extra entry, just pop over and LIKE the official Screenjabber Facebook page.

The competition will close at NOON on Sunday 22 February, 2015. The judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

| Win a copy of A Perfect Man on DVD | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Competitions's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Screenjabber Podcast: Five big heroes

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Sun, 01/02/2015 - 10:35

Join Mark Searby, Amon Warmann, Tom Mimnagh, David Watson and host Stuart O'Connor for a little bit of movie news – Fantastic Four, Ghostbusters and Indiana Jones – and reviews of the big new releases on offer in UK cinemas this week: Big Hero 6, Inherent Vice, Son Of a Gun, Trash, Tales of the Grim Sleeper and Kingsman: The Secret Service.

You can listen to and download the podcast – or subscribe to it on iTunes ... plus you can follow us on Twitter and join us on Facebook.

PubQuest: We're looking to take the Screenjabber Pubcast on the road, and want your input. Know a great pub in London we should visit to record the show? Drop us a line and let us know.

WriterQuest: We're seeking some more writers, particularly those who want to cover video games for us. Please get in touch if you're keen.

| Screenjabber Podcast: Five big heroes | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Stuart OConnor's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Small-Screen Jabber 31 January – 6 February

Posted by Louise Bolotin | Sat, 31/01/2015 - 13:23

By Louise Bolotin

Factual
It’s hard to believe Alice in Wonderland is 150 years old. The Secret World of Lewis Carroll (Sat, BBC2, 9pm) marks the anniversary and journalist Martha Kearney looks at the author’s life as well as that of Alice Liddell, who inspired the tales. Philip Pullman and Richard E Grant explore how Carroll, in real life an Oxford don, was able to conjure up such magical imagery for children. Motorcycle race Guy Martin dons his leathers for Our Guy in India (Sun, C4, 9pm), in a travelogue with a difference. Martin buys a Royal Enfield motorbike, totally out of fashion in the UK but more venerated than a Harley D on the subcontinent. After knocking the bike into shape, he rides it 10,000 miles to India so he can take part in the Rider Mania Race, which he aims to win. The race is strictly for Royal Enfields but it’s Martin’s exploration of modern Indian biker culture that is the real star.

A Cook Abroad (Mon, BBC2, 9pm) also gets in on the travelogue action. For the next week, a renowned chef heads to foreign climes to investigate the staples of a country’s cuisine. It’s not hardcore Anthony Bourdain territory, but it’s of charming interest nonetheless. First up is Hairy Biker Dave Myers, who heads to Egypt to learn how to make proper falafel, the local bread and Egyptian cheese, plus pigeon – known there as Thursday night Viagra – while looking at the cuisine of the Pharaohs and visiting the site where humans are thought to have first begun farming. Documentary of the week is Inside the Commons (Tues, BBC2, 9pm) – Michael Cockerell, who has form as one of our most distinguished docu-makers, has had unprecedented access to the Houses of Parliament so there is some truly amazing behind-the scenes footage to relish. But most importantly, it’s a brutal and incisive portrait of the utter mess in which our democracy currently finds itself. In the run-up to the election, you really don’t want to miss this.

Sport
Just because there’s an 11-hour time difference, doesn’t mean the Aussie Open shouldn’t get a full airing on terrestrial TV. The BBC has fallen well short, screening just one semi-final (Murray v Berdych) and the women’s final so far. The Australian Open Men’s Final (Sunday, BBC1, 8.15am) features our man Andy Murray (above) going head to head with his arch rival Novak Djokovich. Murray is back to his Wimbledon form after a rough 2014 – the smart money says he’ll win, in five sets. Note that print TV guides say BBC2 – it’s definitely on BBC1. For American football fans, the season’s championship Super Bowl (Sun, Sky Sports 1 10pm / C4 10.30pm) is live from Arizona, in what promises to be a thrilling showdown between the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks.

To cap a strong week for sporting championships, it’s the 2015 launch of Six Nations Rugby (Fri, BBC1, 7.30pm). The opening match comes live from the Millennium Stadium as Wales take on England on their home turf. Kick-off is at 8pm.

Music
It’s Genesis Night (Fri, BBC4, from 9pm), with a trio of tribute programmes to the 1970s prog rockers who turned to hit-making radio-friendly pop in the 80s after the departure of frontman Peter Gabriel. First up is Genesis: Together and Apart, a sprawling feature-length profile of the group first shown last year. Phil Collins, Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and Steve Hackett reunite for the cameras to discuss their career, from their long and rambling epic album tracks full of pompous lyrics and extended instrumental solos to their domination of the charts and MTV a decade later. And it’s complete with the obligatory previously unseen archive material and rare footage. It’s followed by Three Sides Live, a documentary of their 1981 tour of north America which is notable for being their musical transition period. The band interviews are revealing. Lastly there’s the TOTP2: Genesis compilation of their archive performance clips.

Entertainment
That peculiar haberdashery equivalent to Bake Off, The Great British Sewing Bee (Thurs, BBC2, 8pm) was a massive surprise hit last year. Apparently, watching people run up a frock on a sewing machine is as exciting as watching amateur cooks get in a lather about baked alaskas. Who knew? Anyhoo, it’s back for a second round of 10 amateur needlers making ever more challenging garments, stitch by agonising stitch.

| Small-Screen Jabber 31 January – 6 February | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Louise Bolotin's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Trips of the Week

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Sat, 31/01/2015 - 10:35

By Stuart O'Connor

Each week, the Screenjabber inbox gets overloaded with emails containing new film trailers, or clips of films or upcoming Blu-ray/DVD/VoD releases. Here are a few of those trailers and clips (hence trips) that caught our eye this week ...

 

Ted 2

Catch Me Daddy

Jurassic World

Fantastic Four

Selma

Kingsman: The Secret Service

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

The Wedding Ringer

| Trips of the Week | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Stuart OConnor's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

The Americans: Holly Taylor interview

Posted by luke | Mon, 26/01/2015 - 14:53

Since the FX hit drama The Americans premiered back in 2012, 17-year-old Holly Taylor has become somewhat of a household name. But Taylor is no stranger to the spotlight. The Canadian-born performer began her career at the tender age of 11, performing in the Broadway production of Billy Elliot as Ballet Girl.

With that said, as Season Two of the spy-thriller unfolded, the youthful actress admits she was surprised to discover just how integral her character, Paige Jennings has become to the story and how centered she is amidst the turmoil. Growing up in a web of extraordinary lies, Paige finds roots in the Church. And as cracks begin to appear in the veneer of her parents’ world, Holly’s character finds herself caught in the middle of the breed of struggles reserved for the likes of undercover KGB spies and the like.

We talked with Taylor about her favorite aspects of playing a girl who lived in a time devoid of social media, strict curfews and cell phones.

Can you tell us a little bit about how you feel interacting with the 1980s, since it's not a decade you actually lived through like the rest of the cast?
That's true, even though I wish I lived in the 80s; it's so cool. Even now my pants are so tight and so high-waisted that sometimes I just like can't move in a scene and so that's not always the most comfortable thing. Except for some of the eccentric wardrobe choices, which have gotten better this year because Paige has mellowed down a lot. Maybe it's because she's older or something – because last season I used to talk about the sweater she had that had tie-dye and a slice of cake on it and she definitely would not wear that anymore so I'm kind of thankful for that. "Praise Jesus," as Paige would say.

Is there anything about playing a teenager in the '80s that makes you think, "oh my God I could not do this!"
There are some things, I mean sometimes I think it's crazy that they didn't have cell phones and you didn't have to text your mom, "I'm getting in the car; I'm getting out of the car; I just arrived at the door; I just walked out of the door." I do that to my mom. But at the same time I think, "wow, that's so cool.” They probably had so much freedom and they didn't have social media to distract them from everything. You could probably just do your homework in like half an hour and not check Twitter every five minutes! Not saying that I do that! Social media is one of those things that I love and I use it all the time so I can't talk bad about it. But I really think life would be so much easier sometimes if we didn't have it. Especially when you're in high school and everyone's just checking up on each other on Twitter. You just get so caught up in it. I think it's cool that they didn't have all that and that you actually had to have conversations face-to-face with people, which not many people take advantage of now. Personally I hate talking on the phone. If I have to talk on the phone with someone it makes me so anxious and then I don't know what to say sometimes so I'd rather just send a quick text or something. But it was nice that they had that skill all the time. I think that's cool.

Tell us about your daily wardrobe...
I have my cross necklace that Paige loves; she's never without that so that's like her little staple. But I don't know so far we've kind of encountered some of the 80’s music. I have the record player in my room and so that's interesting, and it brings you back because now I just like plug in my earphones to my iPhone and just listen to any music I want. They have to show me how to use the record player and I felt so uncultured and I was like, "oh my God I'm so ashamed of myself; I don't know how to use this." I was like so embarrassed. But then, another time we had to use the cell phone – sorry, not the cell phone, the phone that's connected to the cable and I had to put it down really quietly – you can see that in Season Two. They were showing me how to do that because they used to sneak around from parents and put the phone down without clicking it and it was really hard. I'm not a sneaky kid and so stuff like that for me is so hard. I'd be freaking out; I'd be the kind of person that would start shaking and the whole thing falls over and I'd get caught.  I had to go through intense spy training for that one!

Do you get to keep anything from the 1980s set? Any of the props or costumes or anything like that?
I got to keep a couple pairs of jeans that they didn't think were going to work on the show but they were hard denim, you can't even bend them! And so I have them hanging in my wardrobe as a keepsake kind of thing. I was like “maybe I'll wear these” because they were bellbottoms and those came back for a few minutes. Then all of a sudden, as soon as I got them, people stopped wearing them and I was like, "really! I just got these just for this!" So I have those sitting, in case bell bottoms ever come back around and people start wearing them again.

Have you done research on Russia or on the '80s to learn more about the show or do they just to tell you as you go along?
Well, it's kind of like half and half. Since Paige’s storyline doesn't really indulge too much in the actual war because she's not involved. I think that I didn't do too much research but I definitely looked into it. Also I'm learning about the cold war in school. I actually just finished that topic in my history class; I just did a test on it, which I didn't do that well on, which is embarrassing! I did good but I felt like I should've gotten like 105 just because of the show that I'm on. So I hope that my teacher didn't put that together! But yes I kind of just take what I learn from school and what I learned from trivia games on my phone because I'm a nerd. Then also from what I learned from the scripts.  I just kind of mush it all together and then if I need to do research I will.

Do you listen to '80s music for inspiration?
Well, I do listen to '80s music in general because my parents kind of introduced me to all different kinds of music. My mom is from Ireland and my dad is from Scotland so I got all the music from Europe which is really different from the 80s American music. I have a very eclectic music taste so I’ll listen to ASAP Rocky, rap music, and then I'll listen to The Pretenders or something.

What is it like working with Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys?
It's really cool. They're always just fun on set. We were just doing a scene in the garage and I saw Keri jumping up-and-down in place and I was like, "what is she doing over there?” They're always so fun and Matthew's always playing jokes on people; he's the king of puns I think. He's always making pranks so that's always fun. Especially when you're on a drama set, I mean not that I would know; this is my first TV show, but I mean I'm sure that it's definitely helpful when you have so much comedic relief from such humble people that are so fun to be around. So yeah, I just really enjoy it. I'm really thankful.

Do they sometimes act like they are your real parents?
Sometimes, I mean my mom always says that. She's like, "oh, Keri you're lucky that you're a nice woman, or else you wouldn't be allowed to act like my daughter’s mother!” They're protective over me sometimes and they make sure that everyone is being taken care of. They're really good about all that; they look out for everyone on the set; they're just great people so it's really nice.

Keri also started in the entertainment industry quite young. Has she been able to give you any advice? Or help you deal with the kind of balance of being young and working?
Her situation was a little different than mine and the fact that she didn't go to public school. I did ask her about it a little. She always loved acting and being an entertainer and she thought it was so much fun and I feel the same way about it. Seeing her passion and how respectful she is towards everyone, and how humble she is. She's so talented and natural with everything that I think, just watching her I gain experience and knowledge just from being on the same set as her.

What do you think of Keri and Matthew’s disguises?
It's so weird. I think there was one episode in Season Two when me and my mom were like, "is that Keri? Is that really her? What the heck?" Because they do contacts and everything and there's so many different ways that they can make them look different that you can't even think of. But you can still tell that it’s them; it's so weird, and so I actually just looked today, they have a binder of all the disguises that I looked at, and it was just so bizarre she had like lavender contacts in one of the looks and I was like, "wow! I want to wear those. That looks so cool." But yes, it's definitely crazy to see them in those. Like Matthew's ponytail wig, that one's insane! That one gets me every time; I think it's funny.

How do you balance school when you have to be on set?

I have no idea! This week I'm missing Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday of school because whenever I'm here I have to miss the whole day of school because I go to school in New Jersey. I can't commute like that. But when I miss school I have to communicate with my teachers and email them and they'll give me all the work that I need to do. Then I work with a tutor here and I try and get all of it done and most of the time I do, but it's still hard. But I like to keep things up because I'm in the National Honor Society for French and for other subjects and I have my clubs and student council to keep up with. I'm a perfectionist!

What is it about your character, or others’, that surprised you most in Season Two?
*SPOILER*

Well I think with Paige what surprised me the most, was definitely the end of the season, when they mentioned bringing Paige, into the spying business. I really want that to happen and I was like, "yes, I get to wear a ninja suit and be cool." But I didn't think about it actually happening so for it to happen at the end of Season Two, which is like insane and - I just wanted to go to a Tae kwon do class and be like, "I'm ready! I can do this I swear!"

How did you get this job? Did you audition for it?
Yes, I went out to California in eighth grade. I was out there to get more training because there wasn't much in New York. But when I went out there, I trained and I did some auditions and then this one was an on-tape audition and so I went out to LA to get called back to the East Coast. So I came back here and I met the directors and the producers and did a chemistry read with Keri. And that was my only callback and from that I got the part! So it was crazy and it was unexpected because, they always tell you with auditions, once you audition just forget about it because if you just keep lingering on it, you'll just beat yourself up. So I forgot about it, and it was a while, like a few weeks or months even until they called me back. I was like, "what show? What? I don't even remember auditioning for that!" And then, once I read the breakdown I was like, "oh my God! This one!" And I just remember the tape felt good and I just remembered it was a good connection with the character and so to be called back for it was just really, really lucky. Good timing, good luck!

Do your friends and family keep asking you what's going to happen in the show?
My friends? Not so much, because the show was too much for them. There are some inappropriate things and there's so much history behind it, they would rather watch cartoons or something! So they don't really follow it but their parents will sometimes say "oh my God, I can't wait for the next season to come out; I just want to know what's going to happen!" And then they'll ask me what happens or something and be like, "I just want to know what happens but I can’t ask you. I'm so sorry but I just want to know so bad!" But I can't tell anyone and then I'm just like, "I'm sorry; you'll just have to watch; I don’t even know what is going to happen."

Has your life changed much since you’ve been on the show? Do people recognize you on the street now?
A few people have. I mean not that often. I think when Season One first came out I went to an audition and this girl wanted to take a picture with me because her boyfriend watched the show. She was so excited and that was my first time ever being recognized and I was like, "wow, that's really cool." It doesn't happen that often so I'm kind of happy where it is right now. Especially since I'm still in school. People at my school, they think it's cool and everything, but I don't really talk about it that much. If people bring it up I'll answer questions and stuff but if they don't then I'm just Holly. My friends and I, we just hang out and we see Hunger Games and do regular stuff. We just have fun and I want to think that my friends like me for me and not just for other reasons.

Who are the actresses you admire?
I admire Jennifer Lawrence because who doesn't admire Jennifer Lawrence? Let's be real! She's amazing! And Jennifer Aniston, I love her, I think she's so talented and so diverse; she can do drama, comedy, anything. Plus Friends is one of my favorite shows. It's like the only TV show I watch besides this. And I like Rachel McAdams, she is really good. I like Emma Stone, she’s so funny. I'd really like to do more comedy. That way I could just be diverse like them. Because I think it's so cool when you can be so well-rounded. I think that's just such an awesome trait to have and I like to apply that to everything in my life. I definitely look up to people who are more well-rounded.

Before you went to California were you based in New Jersey where you are now?
Yes, I was born in Canada and then I moved to New Jersey when I was two and a half so I don't remember Canada but I like telling people that because it makes me feel special.

So you came back to the same old school and the same old friends?

Yes

That's fantastic!
Yes. It was really nice. So I missed the last year of middle school but middle school wasn't really the best for me. I was on Broadway at the time, I was in Billy Elliot, and I was doing eight shows a week so that was an even crazier schedule than I have now and so that was just insane. I didn't really have time for anything and I didn't really have many friends - not to go down the whole I-was-bullied-path or whatever, but I didn't really have many friends. So middle school was just really hard. Missing eighth grade wasn't a big deal for me. It wasn't something I miss but I really, really, really wanted to go back to start my first year of high school in public school. I didn't want to be homeschooled for that, to be reintroduced back into it would've been so hard. I was really appreciative of the fact that I got The Americans and it was in New York and it just all worked out perfectly. It was really, really nice.

What do you want to be when you grow up?
Right now I want to be an actress, but I also want to go to college for psychology. Maybe like forensic psychology. I'm really interested in criminal minds; the behavior analysis unit. I think learning about people's body language is so interesting. So if all this doesn't work out and this is a one hit wonder for me; if this is my only gig that I ever get, I'll probably keep pursuing psychology or some kind of other art, because I really love all kinds of art.

The Americans Season 2 is out on DVD on January 26 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

| The Americans: Holly Taylor interview | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | luke's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

Trips of the Week

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Mon, 26/01/2015 - 08:01

By Stuart O'Connor

Each week, the Screenjabber inbox gets overloaded with emails containing new film trailers, or clips of films or upcoming Blu-ray/DVD/VoD releases. Here are a few of those trailers and clips (hence trips) that caught our eye this week ...

 

The Voices

The Falling

The Wedding Ringer

The Turning

It Follows

| Trips of the Week | | delicious | digg | reddit | newsvine | google | technorati- | Stuart OConnor's blog | login to post comments |
 
  

US Box Office Report

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Sun, 25/01/2015 - 22:30

American Sniper keeps on rampaging while Depp's Mortdecai misses target

By Rich Matthews

Clint Eastwood's American Sniper is chiming incredibly well with the hearts of middle America. Declining a meagre 28 per cent on last weekend's record-breaking January opening, the Bradley Cooper war drama grossed $64.4m to take its domestic tally up to $200.1m and zeroing on Saving Private Ryan's $216m record as the biggest-ever grossing war film.

Even when Spielberg's 1998 film is inflation adjusted to a $300m total, Sniper has every chance of blowing it away. It isn't doing anywhere near as well overseas – for obvious reasons – but it's global gross of $247.6m is pretty amazing nonetheless given the subject matter and R rating. It's now more than $50m off Eastwood's nearest outing as directing, Gran Torino, and double the likes of Million Dollar Baby and Unforgiven. Even his star vehicles are outgrossed, with only Unforgiven ($202.4m), In The Line Of Fire ($201.4m) and the Clyde monkey flicks Any Which Way You Can ($218.1m) and Every Which Way But Loose ($301.2m) above it when adjusted for inflation.

Following it up at number two was Jennifer Lopez's attraction thriller The Boy Next Door with a better-than-expected $15m, even with some pretty mediocre reviews. But either way, this is still quite the coup for J-Lo because the film only cost $4m to make, so is already showing a sizeable return. At three, Paddington grossed $12.4m to swell its US coffers to a pleasing $40.1m and its worldwide total to an industry-confounding $170m. Expect more from the marmalade-eating bear. At four, Kevin Hart hasn't managed to recapture the new year magic of last year's Ride Along, with The Wedding Ringer taking $11.6m for a domestic tally of $39.7m, while Liam Neeson was hot on his heels in Taken 3, grossing $7.6m for a US total of $76.1m and $226m global, which is healthy but off the pace of the previous two films.

The ubiquitous Benedict Cumberbatch held strong at six in The Imitation Game ($7.1m, $60.6m, a red hot $110.8m), seeing off George Lucas' "quirky" animation (made before the purchase of LucasFilm by Disney, the studio has been quick to add) Strange Magic with a ho-hum $5.5m that was matched by award-bait Martin Luther King drama Selma, taking its tally to $39.2m. Then, nine (yes, nine), Johnny Depp continued his run of box office stinkers with David Koepp's Mortdecai ($4.1m, $9.3m worldwide). Whatever the reviews have been like (and they have stunk), Depp better chivvy Disney along to get the next Pirates Of The Caribbean out sharpish, or his star may truly be on the wane. And Disney itself rounded out the top 10 with Into The Woods ($4.1m, $121.5m, $155.5m).

Internationally, The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies finally opened in China and zoomed to the top of the foreign box office thanks to that $49.5m opening. It's total gross now stands at $866m, $94m behind The Desolation Of Smaug and some way off An Unexpected Journey's $1bn.

Next weekend sees Paramount reveal found footage sci-fi Project Almanac, while Karl Urban, Wentworth Miller and James Marsden can be found in The Loft, and Kevin Costner and Olivia Spencer tackle weighty issues in Black Or White.

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Screenjabber Podcast: A most film-filled year

Posted by Stuart OConnor | Sun, 25/01/2015 - 17:20

Join Andrew Jones, Mark Searby, Amon Warmann and host Stuart O'Connor for the first podcast of the new year. We kick off with Oscar news and a brief look at a few of the films that have come out so far this month – Birdman, Into The Woods, Foxcatcher, Whiplash, The Theory of Everything and American Sniper – plus reviews of the big new releases on offer in UK cinemas this week: Mortdecai, The Gambler, A Most Violent Year and Ex Machina..

You can listen to and download the podcast – or subscribe to it on iTunes ... plus you can follow us on Twitter and join us on Facebook.

PubQuest: We're looking to take the Screenjabber Pubcast on the road, and want your input. Know a great pub in London we should visit to record the show? Drop us a line and let us know.

WriterQuest: We're seeking some more writers, particularly those who want to cover video games for us. Please get in touch if you're keen.

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