Saturday Night Live’s cue card supervisor gives a behind-the-scenes look at an integral and iconic part of the show’s production.
My personal favorite “bad gimmick” was when Kevin Sullivan went out to the ocean and conjured the Purple Haze, a demon from hell or the dark side of the moon or some such place to be his partner in a tag team match against the mighty Road Warriors. Never mind that the Haze looked exactly like veteran wrestler Maniac Marc Lewin, and later turned out to have a thick New York accent. That’s not the good part. What was best about it is that they actually filmed the Haze rising out of the sea, so we were supposed to believe that Sullivan really was partnered with a supernatural power, the very spawn of Satan himself …
and he still lost to the Road Warriors.
Just goes to show you Satan isn’t what he used to be.
Cruise is filming on an aircraft carrier, and the crew is not to make eye contact with the holy one.
I’m not sure I buy into this story, but …
by the way, how much does the Navy charge to use a Nimitz-class carrier for a freakin’ movie? I hope it’s a shitload so I’m not picking up the tab through my taxes and the military budget.
Update from the comments section:
How much they charge depends on how valuable to the cause of the military they think the movie might be. In the case of a Top Gun II, given Top Gun was the single best Navy Recruitment movie ever made, I’d be willing to the navy paying *them*!
But a story that was on the LD release from the navy liaison about the opening scene of flight ops preparing as the sun rose is interesting. The carrier started to turn into the wind and the sun went sailing off the side of the ship. The director was all ‘My light! I’ve got to have that gorgeous light, we need to then the ship back.” The liaison told him that he could request it of the captain, but he’d have to charge him a per hour fee for interfering with operations, and quoted an enormous number. The director said he only needed 15 minutes. They pointed out the aircraft carrier was the size of a town and would need to stop, maneuver back. Wait, maneuver back again, and it was going to use up most of an hour. I think they quoted him 100K+ for it. He “had to have his light” and agreed. But he said that he was pretty sure the navy decided that if it was that important to him he’d pay 100k, they could let it go this time, and he got his shot.
Cutting back on televised categories is EXACTLY what they should do to make the show watchable, but somebody really screwed up when they decided to include editing and cinematography in the excised group.
Here are the words of the academy member who nailed it:
“You move the Oscars for the two jobs that are hand-in-hand collaborations with the director but televise the award for animated short.”
If this were my choice, I’d televise ONLY
Best Animated Feature
Best Foreign-Language Picture
Best Documentary Feature
The four acting categories
The two writing categories
The two music categories
Absolutely nobody cares about shorts of any kind.
I am not discounting the value of production design or sound editing or special effects or anything else, but the viewers simply don’t know any of the nominees and therefore have no interest in the outcome.
While that is also true of editing and cinematography, it obvious that the overall pace and coherence of the film, as well as its appearance, are two of the most important elements in the process. As Alfonso Cuaron wrote, “In the history of CINEMA, masterpieces have existed without sound, without color, without a story, without actors and without music. No one single film has ever existed without CINEMAtography and without editing.”
Actually, I think Cuaron is wrong in saying no film has ever existed without editing. Alexander Sokurov’s Russian Ark, a complex feature-length film which is considered a masterpiece by some, was shot entirely with the camera rolling in one single uninterrupted take, and went straight from the camera to the theaters. But Sokurov just did that to prove he could do it. Cuaron’s point is valid in general.
Yes, and sometimes it screws up the entire movie. Bad Times at the El Royale was a pretty good movie until it introduced a third act villain (the Mighty Thor) who was completely irrelevant to the main mystery, therefore suddenly becoming a completely different movie. Unfortunately that new movie wasn’t nearly as good as the one that got interrupted.
This has the potential to be very good …
with an equal probability of being very bad.
One fan tweeted, “It turns out that Will Smith’s Aladdin Genie will haunt my nightmares.”
“Tommy shows us that Big Shark will deliver even more of his patented weird portrayals of male friendship unfolding in close proximity to strikingly generic buildings.”
My main reason for linking to this BAFTA story has to do with Best Actress winner, Olivia Colman, who is a star of The Favourite (she played Queen Anne).
In 2006 she starred in a role which was somewhat less regal. It required her to be completely naked throughout the film. The film is Confetti, and here are some images of her in that movie.
Conan seems to be going for a whole new vibe with the new short show. This is raunchy stuff.
(And the change is a good idea, in my opinion, because his old show was getting tired.)
Of course he was so tough that the cops should have arrested HIM.
“When Sports Illustrated launched SI Swimsuit in 1964, they chose February because back then there was a gap in sports. But now there is no shortage of sports events in winter, so moving the issue to May aligns us perfectly with the joy that comes with the start of summer.”
I believe the Deltas have a comment to make on this:
Here’s a video clip of the famous scene. As if you need to be reminded. Any baby boomers reading this probably had a crush on her back in the late 70s.
Her acting career was short-lived, consisting of just four films over a two-year period. Her two memorable roles were in Caddyshack (1980) and Animal House (1978). Her career was halted by substance abuse and schizophrenia.
The 2004 film Stateside is allegedly a roman-a-clef about her descent through alcohol, drugs, and mental illness. Rachael Leigh Cook plays the Sarah Holcomb character.
“Hair” was supposed to air on May 19, which would have put it up against the series finale of “Game of Thrones,” which will be a major TV event, perhaps THE TV event of the 21st century. Hair would have been crushed like a bug. I don’t know why they didn’t just move the date, but it may have to do with the weak ratings for the recent broadcast of “Rent.”
“According to an individual with knowledge of the decision, NBC is not completely abandoning live musicals, but will no longer plan on airing them as regularly as they have in the past.”
The Dude again dons the familiar sweater – and turns down a White Russian.
“Way back in the pre-call-display 1970s, Jim Davidson and John Elmo repeatedly phoned the owner of the local dive, Louis ‘Red’ Deutsch, asking for pun names like ‘Ben Dover’ and ‘Pepe Roni.’ After polling the bar for the nonexistent patrons, Red would growl elaborately obscene threats at the pranksters — way too vulgar even for the moral cesspool that was ’90s FOX programming.
The pair recorded all their calls on an old Panasonic cassette player, and somehow a copy leaked. What would became known as ‘The Tube Tapes’ began to circulate, eventually turning into a cult phenomenon.
Groening confessed to being a fan of the tapes, but cagily hesitated from citing them as a direct inspiration”
Matthew McConaughey plays an incoherent bongo-playing stoner. As my fellow Austinites may recall, this is basically autobiographical.
I’m not a fan of Harmony Korine’s movies, but I may have to see this one.
A Star Is Born
Starring Sam Elliot as said man
“Elliott plays a soldier who ended World War II by secretly assassinating Adolf Hitler for his crimes against humanity and mustaches. Forty years later, his old bones are pulled out of retirement for one last mission: to kill Bigfoot, who carries a terrible plague that could wipe out mankind …”
Article here. Poster below says it all.
With brief nudity and some girl-on-girl hanky-panky
The story takes place mainly in the “faded legend” period of the late sixties and early seventies, just before Brando orchestrated a comeback in 1972 with The Godfather and Last Tango.
Billy Zane … a deserted Pacific island in the Pacific…
Will there be an opportunity for Billy to go down in a ship for the fifth time? Stay tuned! (The other four: Dead Calm, Titanic, Cleopatra and Three.)
Kirstie Allie in Blind Date (1984; from the deleted scenes). Yes, 34 years ago. Kirstie turned 68 yesterday. Marina Sirtis was also topless in the movie proper. Both women would go on to play roles in the Star Trek universe.
The director of that film, Niko Mastorakis, was good at getting actresses naked, but he was not much of a filmmaker. I would generously call his best films mediocre, and his worst film is an abomination unto heaven. That would be Island of Death, which I called in my review, “the Citizen Kane of goat-fucking films.”
Despite his anti-talent, I have always enjoyed listening to his director’s commentaries and special features. He is smart, gossipy and humorous. (As with Doctor Frankenstein, one wonders what Mastorakis might have done had he used his genius for good.) The DVD of The Naked Truth is a great rental, but skip the dumb movie and just watch the documentary, “The Films of Nicos Mastorakis: Part IV”. As always. Mastorakis comes up with some great raw and deleted footage, and some great anecdotes about the filmmaking process. His commentary is priceless because he has a rare combination in the film industry: acute intelligence, and complete candor. As Howard Cosell used to say, Mastorakis “tells it like it is”.
Some examples of the material in the documentary:
1. Footage of an unexpected helicopter crash which killed one of his stunt men.
2. A great anecdote about screen legend Jose Ferrer, who once covered up somebody else’s fuck-up by memorizing five pages of script in five minutes. Ferrer then told Mastorakis to film the rehearsal, and delivered every line perfectly. The rehearsal footage was used in the film!
3. Mastorakis’s candid assessment of another screen legend, the unpredictable Oliver Reed. Here are Mastroakis’s words, “My co-director and I had the brilliant idea to hire Oliver Reed, who had been infamous in the industry, not only for the eagle tattoo on his private parts, but also for picking fights and being constantly under the influence. Good old Ollie stood up to his reputation and our expectations. Fortunately enough, he didn’t kill anyone and he wasn’t arrested by the local police.”
4. A long story about the battle waged between Mastorakis and the MPAA over the “X” rating assigned to “In the Cold of the Night”, including the (relatively innocuous) footage that upset the censors.