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Movies

A Surprise Marlon Brando Birthday Gift

LIFELogoTomorrow would have been Marlon Brando‘s 90th birthday. To mark the occasion, Time has raided the Life magazine vaults to showcase 15 bonus photos of the actor.

The photos are from a 1949 Life shoot done in Los Angeles by Ed Clark, during the making of The Men. The best shots are the ones of Brando in Eagle Rock, in and around the bungalow owned by his aunt Betty Lindemeyer. In some of the photos, Brando is joined by his maternal grandmother and her pooch. From the text by life.com editor Ben Cosgrove:

“She [his grandmother] was quite abashed because Clark took pictures of Marlon in a bathrobe, which happens to be hers,” reported a production assistant in notes found in Life’s archives. Grandma Myers was also apologetic about the barbaric way her gandson ate: “Bud doesn’t bring the food to his face,” she told Life, using Brando’s nickname. “He brings his face to the food.”

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After Long Wait, Captain America Fans Watch as Tickets Are Torn Up

ChrisEvansCaptainAmericaBleeding Cool editor-in-chief Hannah Means-Shannon attended a special sneak preview of Captain America: The Winter Soldier last night at the AMC Loews Lincoln Center. She was accompanied by her senior cosplay correspondent Ian Mageto.

Before the lights went down, Means-Shannon witnessed some behavior that Marvel Entertainment and Disney will no doubt soon be apologizing for. It involved people who had in some cases traveled far and queued three hours ahead of the 7:30 p.m. scheduled start time:

They had joined the end of the massive line, trundling up with their precious tickets (though they were free, they were difficult to get and extremely limited), and been asked by the attendants to show their tickets in order to take their place. When they did so, the attendants then asked to take their tickets, so they dutifully handed them over.

And then, without prior explanation, the attendants proceeded to tear up their tickets before their very eyes and inform them that they would not be viewing Captain America that evening. While they stood in stunned silence, they were handed other tickets and told to come back in a week’s time.

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Manohla Dargis Hypes Iran’s Fish & Cat

Let’s start with the synopsis. Fish and Cat, North American premiering next week as part of the annual New Directors/New Films festival at MoMa and the Film Society of Lincoln Center, is picking up where films like Rope and Timecode left off:

A bold experiment in perpetual motion with an enigmatic time-warp narrative, Fish & Cat plays out as one continuous shot, with the camera moving among a host of characters at a remote forest and a nearby lake. Gradually subverting a gruesome premise drawn from a real-life case of a backwoods restaurant that served human flesh, the film builds an atmosphere of tension as a menacing pair descend on a campsite where a group of college kids have gathered for a kite-flying festival…

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Kermit the Frog Answers Daily News Reader Questions

His beauty secret involves green pond scum; his relationship with the “high maintenance” Miss Piggy sounds somewhat open; and there is apparently “quite a bit” of prejudice against frogs in Hollywood.

These are just a few of the revelations to come out of Kermit the Frog’s gracious answering on Tuesday of New York Daily News reader video questions. The Muppets Most Wanted star’s ad libbing skills remain second-to-frog-none.

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Paramount Denial Leads to Immaculate Re-Conception of Variety Headline

ShutterstockRussellCroweHWoF_FeaturedIt’s one of the oldest tricks in the digital journalism playbook. Adjust the headline without letting readers know that such an adjustment has been made.

At press time, there is no Editor’s Note or Correction to indicate that a March 17 item by Variety New York film editor Ramin Setoodeh was originally headlined “Pope Cancels Tentative ‘Noah’ Meeting With Russell Crowe (EXCLUSIVE).” From a related report in The Hollywood Reporter:

Although Crowe had hoped to meet Pope Francis at the Pontiff’s weekly gathering in St. Peter’s Square, Paramount Pictures is denying a report that the Vatican canceled a planned meeting.

“A meeting was never scheduled,” a Paramount spokesman said. A story posted today by Variety ran under the headline: “Pope Cancels Tentative ‘Noah’ Meeting With Russell Crowe.” The original headline did not include the word “Tentative,” which was added after the studio objected.

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Anchorman 2 Spawns a Food Truck

The endless Paramount PR campaign for Anchorman 2 began with promo appearances by Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy on just about every news show imaginable. Then, a few weeks ago, there was the limited theatrical release of a second, alternate version of the movie featuring “763 new gags.”

AnchormanLegendContinuesLogo

Now comes word via Home Media magazine senior reporter Chris Tribbey of an Anchorman food truck. “AnchorVan” is being launched today at SXSW to support the upcoming DVD release of the sequel and will wind its way to NYC for a close-out appearance on April Fools Day:

The “AnchorVan” will offer free chicken (Champ Kind’s Whammy! Chicken, of course) and give Ron Burgundy fans a chance to go on-camera to test their teleprompter reading skills.

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Novelist Andrea Cremer Chose Veronica Mars Over a Summer Vacation

The best part of Dave Itzkoff’s look at the forthcoming crowd-funded Veronica Mars movie are the personal details about some of the film’s high-end Kickstarter donors.

One guy, Cyrus Chung, is described by his wife Ina in the article as being more excited on-set in Los Angeles as a Veronica Mars extra than he was on their wedding day! The couple ponied up $3,000 for that privilege. Meanwhile, Andrea Cremer, author of the popular Young Adult novel series Nightshade, made a personal sacrifice when she pledged $2,500:

“It’s a big chunk of money,” Ms. Cremer said. “I was planning on going on vacation this summer, and it was like, well, either vacation budget or Veronica Mars.”

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Sigourney Weaver Embraces the Action Figure World

RipleyAlien_conceptWe’re guessing few people were more excited about the news that Sigourney Weaver has finally officially acquiesced to the idea of Ellen Ripley action figures than KPCC managing editor, digital Patrick Lee. That’s because his Twitter handle (@ripleycal) mashes the last name of her character in Ridley Scott‘s 1979 sci-fi classic with that of Winona Ryder‘s in 1997 sequel Alien: Resurrection.*

At right is some initial concept art. Although we’re personally excited that there’s a hint of Jim Morrison, chances are that will not make the final toy-cut. From this week’s announcement:

The officially licensed Ripley action figures from the National Entertainment Collectibles Association (NECA) will span multiple movies within the Alien saga: initial plans include a figure of Ripley in her Nostromo jumpsuit from the original 1979 film, to be followed later by a Ripley figure based on the 1986 movie Aliens, directed by James Cameron

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Ralph Bakshi Talks JFK Assassination, Kickstarter

Ezra Glinter, deputy arts director for The Forward, recently got to chat with animation pioneer Ralph Bakshi. As per usual with Bakshi, the interview does not disappoint.

RalphBakshiConeyIslandAfter a long absence from cinema’s frontier, where Bakshi paved the way for South Park, Adult Swim and more, the 75-year-old artist is busy working on his first feature since 1992′s Cool World and first project of any kind since the 1997 TV series Spicy City. It’s called Last Days of Coney Island, with Bakshi planning to release Part 1 online in the coming months:

The first segment centers on Shorty, a four-foot tall dwarf and enforcer for the mob, voiced by Matthew Modine, and other characters include cops named Louis and Max, and a call girl named Mollie, who has recently gotten out of prison…

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Roger Ebert Documentary Filmmaker on the Sequence He Was Happy to Let Get Away

ShutterstockRogerEbertThere was a fantastic interview over the weekend in Roger Ebert‘s paper of record, the Chicago Sun-Times, with the filmmaker getting ready to unveil at Sundance a feature documentary about the late critic.

Anyone who was a regular, early viewer of Siskel & Ebert likely recalls the pair championing Steve JamesHoop Dreams, long before there was a documentary renaissance and-or it was fashionable to hype non-fiction. As many have noted, it’s extra-special to now have James, a filmmaker who rose up alongside Ebert and his balcony-jousting partner, revisit the journalist’s life story posthumously.

At one point in the conversation with Sun-Times reporter Mike Thomas, James recalls the moments immediately following Ebert’s passing and how, although it would have made for an incredible sequence, he was glad in the end that one event turned out to be for his eyes and those of a few others, only:

“[His body] was in the chapel at the Rehab Institute. I said [to his wife Chaz], “Look, I brought the camera, but it’s sitting over there and we don’t have to film at all.” His body was lying in the chapel and there were a few close family [members] and friends and business associates, and I felt privileged to just be there among them. Everyone held hands and we all said the Lord’s Prayer, because that apparently was a prayer that Roger [liked] a lot.”

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