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Posts Tagged ‘Michael Bay’

The Economist Does the Emmys

When it comes to cheeky headlines, few publications are as consistently on target as The Economist. Today, for their wrap-up of the 2011 Primetime Emmy Awards, the austere UK mag has chosen to go with “Up Close and Impersonal.”

The article by “Prospero” wastes no time in taking down the host city. After calibrating our high density of tanning salons and frozen yogurt stores, it segues to this:

Los Angeles is a city where Michael Bay, a filmmaker lately known for directing the Transformers franchise, and the Kardashian sisters are held up as glowing examples of something, but no one really knows quite what (perhaps LA-ness?).

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Church of Scientology Banished to Dark Side of Moscow

For works of alien science-fiction, it has been both the best of times and the worst of times recently in Moscow.

On the one hand, the folks at Paramount Pictures cleverly treated movie reporters to a one-of-a-kind Transformers: Dark Side of Moon junket in and around Red Square, so journalists would have a lot to write and talk about besides the wretched movie. On the other hand, the Church of Scientology has another Ruskie legal battle on its hands after a court in the unpronouncable suburb of Shchyolkovo declared L. Ron Hubbard‘s books (pictured) to be ban-worthy material of an extremist nature. Per the AP wire report:

Attempts by Russian authorities to ban Scientology literature have been overturned recently. In May, the Russian Justice Ministry removed Hubbard’s books from the list of banned literature after a decision by a court in Siberia was overturned. Scientology officials said they would protest the latest court decision.

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Mysterious Collective Aims to ‘Destroy Hollywood’

Feeling a little forlorn after the Rapture came and went, without rapturing? Looking to focus your left-left-of-center energies on something that does not involve volcano alien spirits? Then have we got the website for you.

Hung on an Internet domain native to a group of Pacific islands off New Zealand (presumably, a good place to be when Tinseltown goes down), DestroyHollywood.tk is chock full of hilarious or ominous passages, depending on where you register on the pro-con Michael Bay scale. A taste:

We will educate people about the destruction of popular culture by handing out pamphlets and directing them to this site. We ask you to do the same. Tell children and your friends and family of the dangers of accepting the nihilism and negativity of Hollywood, and modern pop culture values.

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NPR Tags Along with Hollywood Location Scouts

In the spirit of shining the spotlight on some of the professional film ranks that will be nowhere near the Oscar red carpet this Sunday, NPR Morning Edition reporter Susan Stamberg today shared a breezy look at what it’s like to work as a location scout on a big Hollywood movie.

Much of her report focuses on the Cameron Crowe adaptation We Bought a Zoo starring Matt Damon. It evidently helps to have Damon walking around your location, because one Los Feliz resident irked at a two-day street closure says she was soon calmed down by the repeated sight of the affable Hollywood star. There’s also this great Michael Bay anecdote from Zoo location scout Lori Balton:

Balton says working with Bay on Pearl Harbor was a challenge. “He said, ‘I want something white. It’s gotta be white, it’s gotta be white, it’s gotta be white.’ Oh, week after week, into months, we’re looking for white, white, white.

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The Evil Laugh of Justin Lutsky

Ever wonder what happened to all those contestants on the 2007 Mark Burnett-Steven Spielberg reality show On the Lot? In the case of Justin Lutsky, the answer is he’s gone viral.

First, he made a trailer for the Quirk Books entry Night of the Living Trekkies, which at press time is at over 138,000 views on YouTube. Now comes the very funny Epic Evil Laugh, his entry in a Sprint sponsored competition to be judged after November 15th by Michael Bay. Actor Sean Naughton of Captain Morgan Lime Bite fame plays the part of Destructo.

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The Atlantic–150 Years Old

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The Atlantic celebrates 150 years of publishing with a special anniversary issue. Also, there’s an essay contest for readers on The American Idea in 200 words or less, which is a blog post.

Benjamin Schwarz reviews a couple of books on Hollywood history and comes to a conclusion all his own:

Moviemaking in Hollywood’s classical period was colossally complex, backbreakingly difficult, obscenely expensive–and it almost always failed.

One of the books is by Jeanine Basinger, who encouraged Michael Bay, which is enough to damn her to a slummy corner of hell. (James Harvey is a better historian and writer, too.)

Schwarz writes “No wonder Hollywood’s “golden age” is a history of driven, freakishly hardworking, unhappy people, including its show-horse stars” which is dramatic but overlooks the hundreds of talented craftspeople and artists (many of them gay) employed by the studios who wouldn’t have flourished back home on the farm, especially during the Depression. Making movies was as close to making art as many working people were ever going to get, and Hollywood still resonates with their legacy. So, while he’s a wonderful writer, we don’t agree.

Caitlin Flanagan, whom so many love to hate, knocks out a killer piece about another woman who inspires mixed emotions–Hilary Rodham Clinton. It all started with Socks.

Semi-new Angelena Virginia Postrel writes about real estate, and philosophically compares Dallas to LA.

Michael Hirschorn wonders if celebrities can survive too much information. He writes:

Justin Timberlake, like Nick Carter a veteran ’90s boy-bander (in his case N’Sync), may be the only truly bankable star of the blogger era. He deftly melds old-school Rat Pack glamour with new-school multimedia omnipresence, talent, and taste.

Also, Timberlake can make fun of himself, ala Dick in a Box. Like he has a choice.

Trade Round-Up: Oct. 2, 2007

dick wolf.jpegWolf Readies Dynamite New Project
Dick Wolf is taking a dive outside his rich Law & Order pool for a new project on the small-screen, Variety is reporting. He’s teaming with Disturbia duo D.J. Caruso and J.H Wyman on a “comic-book style drama that will use the same greenscreen technology utilized in the hit pic 300.” It’s based on a graphic novel character by Max Allan Collins called Johnny Dynamite. Read the project deets here.

Strike Inches Closer to Reality
Variety also has the latest updates in the potential upcoming writers’ strike with a story by Dave McNary about the WGA‘s Monday email that seeks approval from its members for strike authorization. Check all the facts and the nasty back-and-forth here.

Friday the 13th, Again
Hollywood must be running out of original horror ideas. THR reports that New Line has hired Damian Shannon and Mark Swift to write Friday the 13th, a remake of the horror classic. This time, the trade paper says, the new pic will focus on horror icon Jason again in the infamous setting of Crystal Lake. Oh yeah, and Michael Bay is one of the producers.

- CHRIS GARDNER

Trade Round-Up: Sept. 27, 2007

michael bay.jpegTransformers 2 Picks a Date
Paramount and DreamWorks are moving ahead with plans for a Transformers 2 project, stamping down June 26, 2009 as the release date, reports Variety. The story says the date is just a target but isn’t “ironclad” as they still need to lock in Michael Bay and work out the ongoing tension between the two studios.

Reiner Backs Clinton
Variety‘s Ted Johnson writes in today’s paper that director Rob Reiner has given Hillary Clinton’s campaign a boost by endorsing her in the upcoming election. Johnson writes that Reiner’s decision is a “key endorsement” for Hil because he’s “one of the entertainment industry’s most politically-active figures.”

THR reports that Disney is canceling its Disney Mobile MVNO service, the second such Disney-branded project to bite the dust in less than a year following ESPN Mobile. Read the full Disney shuttering story here.

- CHRIS GARDNER

Transformers: The Message Boards

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Transformers continues to astound.
And here’s how:

It also broke records to become the biggest opening in the history of the universe for a movie with a character with the surname Witwicky and largest gross at the stroke of 3am on a Thursday for a movie who’s cast average over 25ft tall.

Over at Don Murphy’s website, fans are claiming to have seen the film 4,5,6, 7 times. Then there’s the toy freaks. Murphy’s site , true to his maverick spirit, is a free-for-all, and the producer can give as good as he gets.

Director Michael Bay runs his site like a movie set, only without craft services. Don’t ask for a job or post a script, no personal insults or gossip, and take it easy on the swearing. Don’t expect any answers from Bay, either.

Transformers’ SFX–Best Ever? Popular Mechanics

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Popular Mechanics has gotten so cool! How have we missed this? Matt Sullivan writes about the SFX behind Transformers, and makes the science interesting. We also learn that Michael Bay is really, really, really picky, which explains so much.

The website is packed with information about technology, home repair, cars (with Jay Leno!), sustainability, and sports.

And here’s the weird part–unlike girl magazines, there’s nothing to make a reader feel bad about weight, appearance, career or sex life. How do they retain an audience?