Archive for ‘Life’

March 28, 2014

Twitter’s Not That Bad… Joss Whedon (Avengers 2), and T.V. Batman Creator Dies @ 91

by darkjade68

Joss Whedon


Joss Whedon Talks ‘Avengers 2′ Shoot in Seoul (Video)

11:53 AM PDT 3/28/2014 by Graeme McMillan

The director, who preemptively apologized for any “inconvenience,” noted that the shoot in the South Korean capital would include “exciting action” scenes.

Joss Whedon
Joss Whedon

Avengers: Age of Ultron director Joss Whedon has a message for the people of Seoul, where the movie will be shooting for the next two weeks.

Saying that he is “really grateful and excited to be shooting in [Seoul],” Whedon apologized for the disruption the Avengers shoot is likely to cause throughout its two-week duration in South Korea. “We are going to mess it up and inconvenience some people for a few days, and I apologize for that. I know what that’s like, I live in Los Angeles; it happens to me all the time and it’s not fun,” he said in a video note (see below).

STORY: Marvel Finalizes Details for “Avengers 2’ Shoot in Seoul

“We love this movie, we love your city, and having the two of them together will show the city to the world in a light that I don’t think it’s been shown, certainly not in America,” Whedon continued, adding that he apologizes for how hard it will be to shoot what he described as the “exciting action” scenes in the city and describing the opportunity to do so as “a real privilege.”

The Seoul shoot for Avengers: Age of Ultron will last from March 30 through April 14, with it expected to cause a sizable amount of disruption in the city due to closing off a number of bridges and areas of the city as needed. When the Seoul location was initially announced, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige described South Korea as “the perfect location” for the movie “because it features cutting-edge technology, beautiful landscapes and spectacular architecture.”




Lorenzo Semple Jr., Creator of TV’s ‘Batman,’ Dies at 91

Lorenzo Semple, Jr. - P 2014
Hana Kalvachova/isifa//Getty Images

He moved to the movies and wrote screenplays for “The Parallax View,” “Three Days of the Condor,” “Papillon,” “Flash Gordon” and “Never Say Never Again.”

Lorenzo Semple Jr., the creator of the campily classic Batman TV series who went on to craft such big-screen paranoid thrillers as The Parallax View and Three Days of the Condor – though he would be replaced on both films — has died. He turned 91 on Thursday.

The screenwriter died Friday of natural causes at his home in Los Angeles, his daughter Maria Semple – the novelist and Emmy-nominated comedy writer-producer who has worked on such series as Mad About YouSuddenly Susan and Arrested Development – told Scott Feinberg of The Hollywood Reporter.

Semple’s résumé also includes the Steve McQueen-Dustin Hoffman escape tale Papillon (1973); Paul Newman’s Harper sequel The Drowning Pool (1975); Dino De LaurentiisKing Kong (1976) starring Jessica Lange; and the rogue James Bond movie Never Say Never Again (1983).

Most recently, Semple and Marcia Nasatir, a former studio executive, producer and agent, teamed for Reel Geezers, an R-rated YouTube series that saw the Hollywood octogenarians bicker as they reviewed movies.

“We had such fun doing it,” Nasatir said. “He was a wonderful, smart, funny guy and a great friend.”

Semple, who was hired by producer (and eventual Batman narrator) William Dozier to create the superhero show for 20th Century Fox Television and ABC, said he always envisioned the series as a comedy, albeit one played with a straight face.

Semple wrote only the first four episodes, but he served as a script or story consultant on every other installment. He also penned the show’s “bible” for the other writers. (One rule: Batman should never break the law, not even to park in a no-parking zone during a crime-fighting emergency.)

Semple came up with the idea for interspersing the show’s fight scenes with exploding and colorful Pow! Zap! and Kapow! graphics; found the Riddler’s riddles in books popular with third-graders; and named every device the Bat-this or the Bat-that. For Robin’s “Holy (Fill in the Blank!),” he riffed off a similar phrase used by an elderly character in the Tom Swift books.

STORY: Batman Becomes a Family Business in ‘Son of Batman’ Animated Movie

Batman, which starred the perfectly cast Adam West as the Caped Crusader and Burt Ward as Robin the Boy Wonder, aired on consecutive days each week during its first two seasons, with the first episode climaxing with a cliff-hanger. A huge ratings and merchandising smash at the start, it quickly flamed out.

“I think Batman was the best thing I ever wrote, including those big movies,” Semple said in a September 2008 interview with the Archive of American Television. “As a whole work, it came out the way that I wanted it to, and I was excited by it.

“I once went down to a fancy wine-tasting benefit in Princeton. When people found out I wrote Batman, they mobbed me! I was astounded.”

Semple also penned the Batman movie that was released in July 1966 between seasons one and two; that took him two weeks.

He was born Lorenzo Semple III on March 27, 1923, in New Rochelle, N.Y., the oldest of four children. His uncle was the dramatist Philip Barry, and the mother of a high-school classmate was writer Ursula Parrott. She encouraged him to write, and he sold what he described as a “light love story” to The Saturday Evening Post.

Semple enrolled at Yale but soon left school for France in 1941 to drive an ambulance for the Free French Forces. He earned a Croix de Guerre after surviving a battle in the Libyan desert, returned to the U.S., was drafted into the Army and given a Bronze Star. A contrived story about military intelligence he wrote made it into Time magazine.

Out of the service, Semple took drama writing classes at Columbia with the goal of becoming a playwright. He penned Tonight in Samarkand, an adaptation of a French play about a circus that played briefly on Broadway and starred Theodore Bikel.

In the late 1950s, MGM paid him $100,000 for the rights to Golden Fleecing, his comedy set in a hotel in Venice, Italy, that had yet to open on Broadway. Directed by Abe Burrows (the father of Cheers co-creator James Burrows), the play debuted in October 1959 starring Tom Poston and Suzanne Pleshette but lasted a scant nine weeks.

MGM remade the play as The Honeymoon Machine (1961). “It was the only Steve McQueen film that ever lost money,” Semple quipped.

RELATED: Remembering Dino De Laurentiis (1919 – 2010)

He moved to Los Angeles and had scripts accepted for such TV shows as The Rogues, starring Charles Boyer and David Niven, and the Aaron Spelling-produced Burke’s Law, starring Gene Barry. And he wrote the first episode of the action series The Rat Patrol, drawing on his experience in Libya.

When Dozier had an idea to do an hour show called Number One Son, about the offspring of the great fictional detective Charlie Chan, he asked Semple to write the pilot.

“I did the job, ABC liked it,” Semple recalled in the TV Archive interview. “Then Bill got a call from ABC. They said, ‘This is very embarrassing, but it has been decided that we don’t want any stories with an ethnic hero. Period. That’s the end of it. Number One Son is dead.’ But, they said, ‘We owe you and Lorenzo one. We treated you very badly.’”

Semple left to live in Spain with his wife and two young children to concentrate on writing a play. Soon, he got a cable from Dozier (the writer didn’t have a phone) asking to him to meet him in Madrid.

“Bill shamefacedly pulled out of his coat pocket a comic, Batman,” Semple said. “He said, ‘ABC has proposed doing a series on Batman. You and I can do it.’ I said, ‘It’s a terrific idea; go home and I’ll write it.’”

ABC loved Semple’s pop-art sensibility and scheduled the series in midseason without a pilot. During Batman’s first season, he worked from Spain via mail, never met any of the actors and said he received not one critical note from an executive at ABC or Fox.

Semple also didn’t make a lot of money; he said he earned just a few hundred dollars for working on each Batman episode he didn’t write. It didn’t seem to bother him.

“If I had been with a big agency, I presumably could have parlayed [Batman] into a very good overall deal at some point,” he said. “I didn’t do that at all. In those days, the goal was always to get into features.”

STORY: Robert Redford’s Oscar Snub: Who’s to Blame?

Semple eventually had to relocate to the States to work more closely on Batman, moving first to Westport, Conn., and then to Los Angeles, where he eventually rented Boris Karlov’s house and co-wrote Fathom (1967), starring a skydiving Raquel Welch.

His screenplay for the devilish comedy Pretty Poison (1968), starring Tuesday Weld and Anthony Perkins, earned him a New York Critics Circle prize.

Semple wrote a screenplay on spec for Alan J. Pakula’s The Parallax View (1974), a thriller that starred Warren Beatty as an ambitious reporter who investigates a senator’s assassination. Semple’s lead character was a baseball player; he wasn’t interested in how the story was changing and quit to work on Papillon.

But soon after Hoffman joined the cast of that Franklin J. Schaffner film, Semple was replaced by the Oscar-winning Dalton Trumbo.

“He did not do as much work as one would think,” Semple said in the TV Archive interview. “Dalton Trumbo was a famous letter writer; he wrote me a string of letters saying I shouldn’t get any credit, that he should have sole credit. I threw them all away, I never answered any of them.”

STORY: Bryan Cranston to Star as Blacklisted Screenwriter Dalton Trumbo

On Sydney Pollack’s Three Days of the Condor (1975), starring Robert Redford, Semple said he was not surprised when he was eventually let go from that picture. “David Rayfiel wrote all of Redford’s movies, credited or not … Everybody knew they were going to bring in David Rayfiel at some point.”

Semple met with Sean Connery in Marbella, Spain and sold him on his 70-page treatment for Never Say Never Again, which saw the aging actor return as 007 in the much-litigated Warner Bros. film based on Thunderball. But when some action scenes were cut as a cost-saving measure, the producers pacified an angry Connery by blaming — and then booting — Semple.

“I was quite relieved; I really didn’t want to go on with it,” he said. “I also agree a human sacrifice is required when a project goes wrong; it makes all the survivors feel very good.”

STORY: MGM, Danjaq Settle 50-Plus Year Legal Fight Over James Bond Rights

Semple later wrote the screenplays for the silly Flash Gordon (1980), the Tanya Roberts-starring Sheena (1984) and several telefilms.

In addition to his daughter Maria, survivors include his wife Joyce, children Johanna and Lorenzo III and six grandchildren.

A longtime WGA board member, Semple taught screenwriting at New York University’s NYU Tisch School of the Arts from 1984-90. In the TV Archive interview, he expressed disdain for the “self-pitying” scribe.

“I’ve heard many writers say, ‘We’re the only ones that face the agony of the blank page’ … I say, actually, you’re idiotic,” he said. “The blank page is the greatest moment of writing a script. It could be the greatest script in the world. It’s going to go downhill from here as you write it. But be happy that you have the privilege of facing it.”

Twitter: @mikebarnes4

March 25, 2014

Twitter’s Not That Bad… Some Interesting Tweets

by darkjade68

Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) in “Hercules”

Looks Interesting… Though I am a Conan Fan, so, yeah


I Just Like Elton John…


Elton John’s Las Vegas Show Coming to Movie Theaters for One Night

Rolling Stone

Elton John's Las Vegas Show Coming to Movie Theaters for One Night


View photo

Elton John’s Las Vegas Show Coming to Movie Theaters for One Night

Elton John‘s bombastic Las Vegas show “Million Dollar Piano” will hit theaters tomorrow night, March 26th, in 40 different countries, for a special one-night only encore screening. You can check out listings, ticket info and theater locations for the concert film over at Fathom Events.

Watch a quick clip of John playing “Rocket Man” during the show below, which offers a taste of the extravagant stage setup and light show of “Million Dollar Piano.” The one-of-a-kind piano is laced with 68 LED screens displaying images complementing the musician’s set.

John opened up his residency (his second in Las Vegas) at The Colosseum in Caesars Palace in 2011 and the show finds him navigating a hit-filled setlist, including “Tiny Dancer,” “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting,” “Philadelphia Freedom” and more.

The one-night broadcast of “Million Dollar Piano” celebrates both John’s birthday – the musician turns 67 today – and the 40th anniversary reissue of his classic 1973 album, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. The super deluxe edition includes never-before-heard demos, a live concert from 1973 and a disc of covers by Fall Out Boy, Zac Brown Band and Ed Sheeran.

Find out where Elton John’s ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ ranks on our list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time

John and longtime collaborator Bernie Taupin recently walked Rolling Stone through the recording of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, from its naïve origins – “I didn’t even know what a joint was when I made Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” John admits – to their miserable recording experience in Jamaica and the eventual creation of some of their biggest hits. Though John to this day believes that one such smash, “Bennie and the Jets,” should never have been a single: “I had an argument with MCA and the only reason I caved was because the song was the number one black record in Detroit,” he said. “And I went, ‘Oh my God’” I mean, I’m a white boy from England. And I said, ‘Okay, you’ve got it.’ It just shows you that you can’t see the wood through the trees. To this day, I cannot see that song as a single.”

Not that he doesn’t dig the song – or other artists’ versions of it. John recently lauded a cover of “Bennie and the Jets” by rising R&B singer Miguel and rapper Wale, saying their rendition, “really makes the best of what the song is all about. And it is an unusual song. It’s not what I think is a hit record, but then that’s probably why it was a hit record, because it didn’t sound like anything else before. It’s important not to copy, and that’s what Miguel did.”


Originally Posted Here

March 22, 2014

So I Was Talken To Ed Norton This Morning…

by darkjade68

ed nortonThen I Realized I Had A Typo, Lol

“Your” instead of “You”

So Of Course I Tweeted Him Again, Lol



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