Watch This: Trailer for When We Rise

When We Rise is an 8 hour mini-series to air on ABC on four nights. When We Rise tells the story of the LGBTQ rights movement, tracking key figures from their first days as activists to the present day. Continue reading “Watch This: Trailer for When We Rise”

Watch This: Trailer for Big Stone Gap

Big Stone Gap looks like an old-fashioned romantic comedy from a bygone era. The comedy might be a bit on the silly side, but I’m completely sold on the cast. It stars Ashley Judd, Jane Krakowski, Jenna Elfman, and Whoopi Goldberg. All that female awesome is countered by Patrick Wilson as the romantic leading man.

Ashley Judd and Patrick Wilson in Big Stone Gap

There are other well known actors in the film, including Chris Sarandon, Jasmine Guy, Anthony LaPaglia, John Benjamin Hickey, and Judith Ivey. Dagmara Dominczyk will play Elizabeth Taylor. Big Stone Gap was written and directed by Adriana Trigiani.

Here’s the plot synopsis:

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, the tiny town of Big Stone Gap is home to some of the most charming eccentrics in the state. Ave Maria Mulligan is the town’s self-proclaimed spinster, a thirty-five year old pharmacist with a “mountain girl’s body and a flat behind.” She lives an amiable life with good friends and lots of hobbies until the fateful day in 1978 when she suddenly discovers that she’s not who she always thought she was. Before she can blink, Ave’s fielding marriage proposals, fighting off greedy family members, organizing a celebration for visiting celebrities, and planning the trip of a lifetime-a trip that could change her view of the world and her own place in it forever.

The 1978 setting explains Whoopi Goldberg’s hairdo and all the interest in whether or not a woman approaching 40 has a husband.

The movie is based on a best-selling novel by writer-director Trigiani and filmed entirely on location in her Virginia hometown. Patrick Wilson’s family also comes from Big Stone Gap, VA. I suspect some of the extras will be persons of importance to either Trigiani or Wilson.

This is Trigiani’s first directing effort. She’s worked as a producer and has written a number of best selling novels. The film will be released October 9, 2015.

Images © 2015 Picturehouse.

Jennifer Lawrence will Star in a Steven Spielberg Film

Just when I think I want to stop following Steven Spielberg on Twitter because he’s something of a jerk, he goes and decides to make a biopic about war photographer Lynsey Addario called  It’s What I Do.

Jennifer Lawrence signed on to star as Addario. The film will be based on Addario’s new memoir It’s What I Do: A Photographer’s Life of Love and War.

Lynsey Addario and the cover of her book
Lynsey Addario and the cover of her book

Addario is 41. It isn’t often that a film gets made about the life of someone so young. Jennifer Lawrence is 24, so I’m presuming that the story will be about the early part of Addario’s career as a war photographer.

For a quick education on why Addario is famous as a photographer, visit her web site at lynseyaddario.com and look at the photos there.

This is the first time Spielberg has directed a movie starring a woman since 1985’s The Color Purple, which starred Whoopi Goldberg. 1985. Do the math. That’s 30 years. Truth in reporting, Spielberg has produced women centric stories such as The United States of Tara since 1985.

Surely there’s some deep message to be unearthed from the fact that one of the most famous directors on the planet only undertakes a film about a woman once every 30 years.

Maybe it’s capitalism in action. Jennifer Lawrence is huge now. She’s part of the reason films starring women bring in a better return on investment than films about men. Go, Jennifer! You’re helping to change the world. May the rate of pay for female stars be ever in your favor.

Yes, a hot young 24 year old can get a lead part in a movie by Steven Spielberg. However, I don’t see Hollywood beating a path to the homes of the over 40 women in Tinseltown offering them big parts. I love what Jennifer Lawrence is accomplishing for female-led films – but all is not forgiven, Hollywood. You still need to do better.

There’s no word yet on any other casting choices or when the film will be underway or completed.