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Posts Tagged ‘John Waters’

Inveterate Hitchhiker John Waters Takes Another Shot at Manhattan

When your article begins with this:

Hitchhiking Through New York City With John Waters”

And then immediately follows, before any article text, with this:

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You’re well on your way to a Divine bit of feature-interview journalism. Freelance writer Mark Yarm hung out with the 68-year-old Waters last month as the Baltimore native, with two other signs besides the one shown above, did some signature promotion for new book Carsick. Out this week, Waters’ latest tome details a recent cross-country hitchhiking trip from San Francisco to his beloved hometown.

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Kenneth Turan Remembers When Cannes Was a Much Easier PR Ride

Those were the days. At the top of his reminiscence piece about covering the Cannes Film Festival, LA Times film critic Kenneth Turan paints a delightful, junk-the-junket picture:

Cannes was more casual back in 1971, of course. You could hang out with Italian director Luchino Visconti without much planning or go see Jack Nicholson in his hotel room and spend the afternoon discussing his first directorial effort, Drive, He Said, with no more preamble than running into a friend of his on the street.

There were 800 credentialed journalists back then; today, there are around 4,000. Turan cites the 1999 Greek sci-fi parody Attack of the Giant Moussaka as one of his all-time favorites from the less carpeted Marché side of the annual event.

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John Waters Christmas Show Winding Its Way to LA

There’s rarely a dull moment when John Waters is in the middle of it all.

Last night during the Tarrytown, New York performance of the filmmaker’s annual Christmas show tour,  an audience member tried to present him with a taxidermy mouse. Tonight, the venue is the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, followed by LA’s Wilshire Ebell Theatre on Thursday.

Ahead of tonight’s Solana Beach appearance, Waters chatted with U-T- San Diego North County arts reporter Pam Kagen. At one point, he went off on – surprise – a weird tangent:

“Everyone should come to the show, even if you can’t stand Christmas on religious grounds, financial grounds, communist grounds, sexual grounds…”

Wait a minute … sexual grounds?

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Pioneering Independent Filmaker George Kuchar Dead at 69

Longtime San Francisco resident George Kuchar passed away Tuesday night at the age of 69. Kuchar wore many hats – visual artist, teacher, author – but he is best known for his work as an underground filmmaker. From the San Francisco Bay Guardian:

By himself and with his twin brother, Mike, George Kuchar — who influenced innumerable young artists while teaching at the San Francisco Art Institute — directed over 200 films, as wild and creative as they were low-budget, and almost always boasting titillating titles: Color Me Shameless (1967), Hold Me While I’m Naked (1966), The Devil’s Cleavage (1973). He also wrote the screenplay for 1975 horror-porn-turned-midnight-classic, Thundercrack!

John Waters, Todd Solondz, and David Lynch are among those who count Kuchar as an artistic influence. Waters contributed an introduction to the twins’ 1997 book, Reflections from a Cinematic Cesspool, now out of print. Hopefully we’ll see it someday on Google Books

Pondering Jack Black’s Giant Penis

Strange things are bound to happen when a freelance travel reporter sets sail for the Bermuda Triangle. But quite frankly, FBLA was completely unprepared for the scene about a third of the way through Gulliver’s Travels that sees Jack Black whip out his privates and dangle them off-screen, for an extended period of time, above Lilliput’s citizenry.

While the 20th Century Fox family film showcases a remixed version of Jonathan Swift‘s fabled kingdom, the basic big-person-little-people ratio remains the same. Ergo, viewed from below, the manhood of our moonlighting mailroom clerk Lemuel Gulliver would be the equivalent of a small dirigible.

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Norman Mailer Writers Colony To Honor Toni Morrison, David Halberstam

mailer award.jpgNext week, the Norman Mailer Writers Colony will throw its first gala hosted by New York media bigwigs Tina Brown and New Yorker editor-in-chief David Remnick.

The gala, emceed by Nation columnist Calvin Trillin, will be held at Cipriani on Tuesday night and will also serve as an awards dinner honoring Toni Morrison with a Lifetime Achievement Award and posthumously bestowing the Distinguished Journalism Prize to David Halberstam. The first Norman Mailer National High School Nonfiction Writing Award and Norman Mailer College Nonfiction Writing Award will also be given out that night.

The writers colony is a nonprofit organization founded earlier this year, located at the home of the late author and Village Voice founder in Provincetown, Mass. It aims to help nurture writers in the spirit of Mailer, who passed away in November 2007 at the age of 84. The organization is billing this year’s gala as the “first annual,” presuming there will be more to come.

The group is also promising that boldfaced names like Joan Didion, Pete Hamill, Jhumpa Lahiri, Salman Rushdie, Gay Talese, designer Diane von Furstenberg and director John Waters will be in attendance, so you know we’ll be there covering the event.

Related: RIP, Norman Mailer

Operation Repo or So It Has Come to This

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In our quest to do nothing over the winter break – we ended up in a Operation Repo marathon on TruTV.

This “unscripted” show is Cops meets Jerry Springer.

Or it’s Reno 911 – if it decided to really be a show about the perils of police work.

You know how when your stupid friend begs you to go see their improv group at some horrible club in Hollywood and you spend the evening sitting in the back of some sticky theater watching the parade of lame and you wonder why you are friends with this guy in the first place and how the hell did you just get suckered into paying a cover to watch real life Hard Rock servers pretend to be Starbucks workers? “Ok, now we need help from the audience.” Indeed.

That’s how Operation Repo is…sans the stupid friend and the cover charge. It’s a series of reenactments of some of the “looniest” and “wildest” repo adventures in The Valley – but if John Waters cast it. There’s the obese blond Latina goth girl who repos vehicles in a floor length black tutu for starters…

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FBLA Goes to the Party: Schnabel at Gagosian

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Julian Schnabel’s paintings of bones (used in the credit sequence of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) are on view at Gagosian Gallery, with a preview party last night. Schnabel’s at work on his next film, because he evidently needs no sleep.

Tilda Swinton, Lauren Hutton, Ben Silverman, the Weinsteins, Brett Ratner, and Diane Keaton were sighted.

Fashion icon Lisa Eisner (she owns Sammy Davis Jr.’s wardrobe) and Nicky Hilton both looked great but not together, naturally.

We said hi to Roger Friedman but didn’t recognize David Carr from the NY Times. (We don’t seem to be the only ones.) Gabe Snyder took a smoke break with Schnabel, but we were too busy feeling inept.

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We were just about to snap John Waters with our Speed Graphic camera disguised as a phone, when the official photog hissed at us to get out of his way. Waters told us he never watches The Wire, as it’s too depressing, and that he’s delighted for Patty Hearst and her show dog, but no, he’s not making a movie about dog shows.

Outside, the paparazzi were getting soaked.

Patty Hearst Wins with Bitch at Westminster

The NY Times blog, The Lede, seems to think Patty Hearst, heiress/kidnap victim, has been sitting on her ass in Connecticut since she got out of that prison cell, only to re-emerge at the Westminister Kennel Club show. Mike Nizza thinks she ditched taco night at the sorority to join the SLA and completely ignores her real come-back–Serial Mom, directed by the immortal/immoral John Waters:

The bitch above is Kathleen Turner. The canine version, Diva (real name: Shann’s Legally Blonde) won a ribbon for Best of Opposite Sex in the French bulldog competition, the runner-up prize. Don’t know if she’s wearing white shoes.

(Nizza’s not really a reporter, but boy can he code!)

FBLA 20 Questions: Emmanuelle Richard

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Foreign correspondent, Emmanuelle Richard contributes to French daily Liberation,Swiss public radio and French Vogue. She blogs, she’s clever, and has that effortless French chic but a wicked sense of humor about the world, show biz and Los Angeles. We’re overjoyed she answered our questions.(And a word to all future 20 Questioners–she sent us all the URLs, saving us hours of valuable time.)

1. What newspapers do you read?

The New York Post, first thing in the morning since they started delivering in L.A. a few years ago. I wish I could say the L.A. Times (where her husband works) but I love too much starting the day laughing out loud or shouting: “Good Lord!” You have a sense that the people there have a blast hunting for stories, producing the pages and coming up with insane headlines. And you grow so fond of the gallery of characters, apart from the many unpleasant anti-European columnists. Then I grab the L.A. Times, starting with the Opinion section. I also check the website of the national daily paper I work for in France, the left-leaning Liberation.

2. Which ones do you move your lips to while reading? You mean, when you silently mutter WTF? More often than not, the LAT, especially when they feel the need to rephrase a paragraph three times in one story that could easily be 30% shorter. To be fair, my hometown paper also induces a lot of silent “WOW”s, and I often end up defending it in conversations in L.A. where trashing the LAT seems like a requisite sport. Coming from France where investigative journalism is as foreign as tofu, I feel very lucky to have the LAT.

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