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Jeri Jacquin and Jenise Jacquin
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CineMunn Podcast is back with another new show! Vince Munn, Tommy Metropoulos and Benjamin Briggs invited me and Film Brat to join them on their podcast. We talked inspirations, favorite interviews and Oscar season thoughts. This is their longest show and funniest so please tune in and while your there...subscribe to these boys and give them some film love!!
Movie Maven and Film Brat Join CineMunn for a Podcast of film talk and other Mayhem!
RAVE & RAGE
with Movie Maven and Film Brat
Anchor Bay Entertainment is going to blow us all away as the groundbreaking anime film GHOST IN THE SHELL comes to Bluray in March of 2017. Encased in a limited-edition Mondo key art collectible Steelbook packaging, it is a way to continue the celebration that began in 2014 with the 25th anniversary of the original Manga.
HIDDEN FIGURES Offers a Look into NASA’s History
In theatres this Friday from director Theodore Melfi and 20th Century Fox is a moment in history that finally has come to the surface releasing the HIDDEN FIGURES.
The space race is on as the United States and Russia compete to put a man in space. Becoming frustrated as Russia pulls forward, Al Harrison (Kevin Costner) wants only the very best on his team. That would be Katherine Gobel (Taraji P. Henson), an African-American mathematician who is sent to work in a room full of men who clearly have their own issues with race.
Upset that she is part of the team; roadblocks are put in her way by colleague Paul Stafford (Jim Parsons) who isn’t happy she is there. To make matters worse, there is no restroom close by and the coffee pot seems to be off limits. Determined not to let that stop her, Katherine is joined by friends Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) who wants to be an engineer and Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) who decides that she will move up the NASA ladder her way.
Slowly Katherine proves that her methods are spot on and so much so that John Glenn (Glen Powell) supports not only the work but Katherine personally. Harrison sees the tension between Katherine and Paul which calls for serious changes. Her frustration lies in the fact that the computations change daily and all her hard work is for nothing. By standing her ground the group begins to come together.
Dorothy learns through Vivian Mitchell (Kristen Dunst) that something called an IBM computer is the mathematical problem solver of the future. Knowing that means the jobs of she and the other women are in jeopardy, Dorothy takes matters into her own capable and smart hands.
Mary has the dream of becoming an engineer with NASA but knows that further education is something out of her reach. Told by capsule maker Karl Zielinski (Olek Drupa) that she needs to make it happen, Mary takes her dream to court!
When John Glenn prepares to go into space, he calls upon Katherine to give him the go from Mission Control – a place she has earned to be!
Henson as Katherine is smart and sassy working her way through many roadblocks. Believing in herself and her mathematical gift is inspirational as it should be with three young daughters looking to her for guidance. Taking on the larger position of putting a man into space, she puts her head down and pushes forward – until its time to do more than push forward. Henson gives Katherine grit and heart never letting one moment of doubt take her down.
Spencer as Dorothy is a woman who knows she is doing the work without the pay of a supervisor. As a problem solver, Dorothy takes it upon herself to learn about the new technology coming to NASA. Spencer has proven continually to be an actress who takes her roles to heart and Dorothy is no exception.
Monae as Mary is the saucy one of the bunch who has no problem telling it like it is. Telling people their issues is an easy way of hiding her own – which is to find a way to fulfill her dream. Feeling as if NASA is pushing the engineering dream further out of reach, Mary discovers a way to not only get the education she needs but make her mark doing so.
Costner as Harrison doesn’t have time for games or those who play them. Bringing Katherine into the group he makes it clear that he doesn’t have time for anything but the best. Once he is made aware of the conditions Katherine is dealing with, he doesn’t waste any time removing barriers in his department of NASA. Costner leads but in such a way that his character is important but also steps aside for his talented lady costars to tell their part of the story.
Other cast include Mahershala Ali as Col. Jim Johnson, Aldis Hodge as Levi Jackson, Kimberly Quinn as Ruth, Kurt Krause as Sam Turner, Ken Strunk as Jim Webb, and Donna Biscoe as Joylette Coleman.
HIDDEN FIGURES is a film that digs deep into the history of NASA on a project that is hugely historical. What also gives these performances such richness is the set design and costuming. Any time I watch a period piece it is important to transport not only me but all viewers into the, pardon the pun, space and time of the story. HIDDEN FIGURES and director Melfi do just that.
. I had the pleasure of speaking with director Ted Melfi about HIDDEN FIGURES and what it took to bring that piece of history to the silver screen.
JJ: Good morning Ted, thank you so much for speaking with me today about your film.
TM: You are so welcome Jeri.
JJ: I had never heard this story before, what inspired you to become involved?
TM: When I first read the proposal by producer Donna Gigliotti and had the same reaction as everyone else of ‘How is this possible? There is no way this is a true story.’ I started to dig into it and understand that it was a true story of how NASA had a team of women putting our guys up into space I was floored. I mean I have two daughters and they are still being told in this day and age ‘don’t worry about learning the math’. I find that shocking especially since we are trying to lift them up and show them that they can do anything a man can. This story inspired me and there way no way I could say no too making this film.
JJ: Especially since it is part of history, a lot of girls were told even when I was younger that math wasn’t important to learn.
TM: It is a shame that we minimized women in Science, Math and Engineering and the truth is they are as good if not more so having the mind for it.
JJ: I think maybe a little more patience too.
JJ: When choosing the cast, what drew you to these three women in particular?
TM: I have been in love with Taraji P. Henson’s work ever since the film BENJAMIN BUTTON and in that film she blew me away. My wife and I saw it together and said ‘who is that actress?’ that was playing Brad Pitt’s mother in the film. I was blown away by her passion, strength and raw power and honestly. Then you watch her in the role of Cookie in the television series Empire and that woman from BEJAMIN BUTTON was now Cookie in Empire. I knew that she had this incredible range in her and I knew she would be the perfect off-beat choice of Katherine Johnson. I wanted to go for it and she was so inspired by the challenge and took it on. She is absolutely amazing and inspiring in this role.
JJ: And Octavia Spencer?
TM: Octavia, I mean there is nothing that I can say enough about her as Dorothy Vaughn.
JJ: I was actually thinking the same thing. I mean what more can you say about her?
TM: I know, Octavia could play absolutely anything you could throw at her and it would be fantastic. She is one of the greatest actresses of our time in my mind. That one was a no brainer. Janelle Monae playing Mary Jackson and we wanted someone different, unique and exciting for this character. Janelle is exciting and passionate and wild and inspired and takes dramatic turns. She always makes wild choices with her work and it shows in this performance as well.
JJ: It’s the beautiful trio to be sure.
TM: Yes, Taraji brings the quiet introverted brain of the group. Octavia is the foreman and the maternal leader of the group and Mary is the wild child who always has to be reminded that it’s 1961.
JJ: You have Kevin Costner in the mix who seems to be the buffer.
TM: Kevin Costner is one of the most unique men I’ve ever met in my life. He brings that integrity and worth ethic into every thing he does. His character, Al Harrison, represents the glue that kind of holds the teetering space program together. He balances the science and the math along with the business and imaginative people. Back in 1961 in the Jim Crow south is dealing with racial tensions in the workplace. It’s not that he is unaware of what is happening as much as he doesn’t care. He is about the mission. In his mind the mission and the math of what they are trying to do trumps race and sex of a person.
JJ: I hope that people get that there are so many issues in this film, not just one specific issue. How was that for you as a director covering it all?
TM: It was exciting to be honest with you. To me the 1960s was an explosive time in history. The space race was happening, the Cold War was happening, Civil Rights issue were happening, the Kennedy assassination was happening, Martin Luther King assassination was happening…
JJ: See, that’s what I mean, so many, many issues!
TM: They are all running parallel to each other as well. The Freedom Riders bus protested to Washington D.C. the day before Alan Shepard launched his first mission into space. That should tell you the parallels between these two races and how they basically started to achieve success together in tandem is mind boggling. To pack all of this in one movie was an enjoyable task and to be able to get to say something about who we were and who we are and what we can become as a country when we work together.
JJ: Did you find that you had to do a lot of your own research to allow yourself to get deeper into the film?
TM: Oh yes, I did endless research. I researched every detail of the movie. I dug into a mass amount of books and documentaries about all of this. The Discovery Channel had a series When We Left Earth: The NASA Missions (2008) and I dug as deeply into Civil Rights as I did NASA. I re-watched the PBS series Eyes on the Prize [A documentary that documents the Civil Rights Movement from 1952 to 1965] about how it all occurred. I did tons of photo research as well. In regards to the math I learned everything from the ground up from like trajectory calculations etc. I kind of became a dangerous expert of it all.
JJ: When you are talking about the mathematical side of it, how did Taraji handle it? I mean she’s writing equations on the board so fast!
TM: Taraji being the mathematician consulted with the same person I did from Rudy Home who received his PhD. out of Morehouse College. He trained Taraji and she memorized the math having so much time with him. Taraji might actually be a genius on her own. What she can do I have not seen that often, memorize something and understand it in a very short period of time. She did it effectively and efficiently in one take.
JJ: I realize there is so much in this film to experience but as the director what would you want viewers to take with them after watching the film?
TM: See the film to be reminded of how great American has always been and how when we work together, regardless of race, sex or creed, there is nothing that this country can not achieve together.
JJ: It’s so very well said and very true, thank you Ted!
This director has a straight vision for this film and with an absolutely stellar cast bringing a story that should be shown in every classroom!
In the end – meet the women you don’t know behind the mission you do!
Get ready to party like never before with
On Bluray & DVD February 7th and Digital HD January 24th
RIDE THE WAVES OF DISNEY'S
on Bluray & DVD March 7 and Digital HD February 21st
THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS Stuns on Bluray and a Talk with Director Derek Cianfrance
On Bluray from DreamWorks Pictures is one of my favorite films of 2016. THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS is a film that is captures everything about being a flawed and frail human being. Surrounded by only the ocean, a lighthouse and miles of nothingness, THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS doesn’t confound with special effects but instead dares us to feel – everything!
Tom Sherbourne (Michael Fassbender) is a man looking for isolation after experiencing war. Taking a job as a lighthouse keeper he finds exactly what he needs. In the middle of the ocean stands a lighthouse on an island where he beings the process of inner healing. What he doesn’t expect is to fall in love with the beautiful Isabel Graysmark (Alicia Vikander) who shares his love of isolation.
The two begin their lives at the lighthouse with the hope of having a family. When it becomes clear that Isabel only suffers from trying to have a child, a drifting row boat brings them a miracle baby.
Their life becomes even happier as the years roll like the waves they are surrounded by. While visiting family, Tom sees a mysterious woman named Hannah (Rachel Weisz) who has the potential to change all of their lives
I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with writer/director Derek Cianfrance about what drew him to the film, the process to find the perfect place to film and his hopes for what the audience will take away from the film.
Jeri Jacquin: Thank you for talking the time to talk with me today about the film
Derek Cianfrance: You’re very welcome
JJ: I wanted to first say that THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS is absolutely brilliant on so many levels. It’s beautiful, moving, original and cinematically stunning.
DC: Well thank you I do so appreciate that, my mother-in-law agrees with you.
JJ: That’s because she’s got amazing taste. Can you tell me how you became involved with the film?
DC: Coming off my film A PLACE BEYOND THE PINES (2012) I was looking for an experience doing an adaptation and was reading scripts that I wasn’t making a connection to. I had a meeting with DreamWorks because Steven Spielberg was a big fan of BLUE VALENTINE (2010) so they asked me to come in and talk about what was next for me. There was this pile of books they gave me when I left and the book on top was A Light Between Oceans and I was intrigued. I thought about it cinematically, about a lighthouse keeper and thought it mirrored the experience of being in a movie. A light shining out projecting through the darkness and so I started reading the book.
JJ: What about the book touched you?
DC: I just felt it strongly had the themes of family, forgiveness, legacy, paternity and relationships that I have been exploring in my own movies. I felt like it had this rock solid narrative that I was really interested in exploring. It took me about a year to get it and I had the book memorized by that point. It was just a total privilege to be working on the film.
JJ: That is a big part of what I so love about the film. First of all I love the isolation idea of lighthouses and I’m sure many have wondered about that life at one time or another. Even more so is that there isn’t an emotion in this film that doesn’t illicit strong responses. When there is sadness you feel it strongly, when there is moral conflict it is so intense, when there are moments of joy you embrace it and I have to say I was emotionally exhausted by the films end.
DC: For me too!
JJ: Exactly for you! Was it difficult to find this amazing location? How long did it take you to find it?
DC: It took me about six months to find the location because it is fictitious in the book. I wanted to find a place where I would be isolated with my actors and I started out going to Australia going to every island lighthouse I could find. We were almost ready to shoot off the coast of Tasmania when another film came in. New Zealand was close by and they had an offer for us to bring the film there and the first thing I did was go to every lighthouse island I could find and there were great locations. So one by one it was either the lighthouse was too short or there was an indigenous population of endangered lizards were on the island so no human beings could go there. Finally, the very last place I looked was this place called Cape Campbell and initially I was resistant to go there because it is all about process for my actors wanting them to feel and have an emotional experience. The problem was it was literally hour’s long drive down a dirt road to get to the lighthouse location.
JJ: Seems as if the location spoke to you in an important way.
DC: Absolutely, I wanted to keep the film very true to the location so when it came time to present it there were questions about how to get a large crew there. That’s when I said I would rather have 10 crew people living at the location than 30 hauling back and forth. We talked it over in great detail how to make it work.
JJ: Did you have to talk with the actors about that decision as well?
DC: Yes, I actually called Michael Fassbender and told him my idea. I explained that living at the shooting location would bring the actors an amazing experience. Being surrounded by the wind, waves, and the isolation that his character is feeling is a major part of telling this story. He told me he’d give me a day to show him how it would all come together and seven weeks later we filmed an amazing story.
JJ: What do you want people who see THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS to take away from the film?
DC: When putting a book like The Light Between Oceans on the screen it is important to make sure every aspect of the story is there. There are of course very strong themes in this film of love and family and those ties that keep us together. I think that the one thing I hope audiences take from the film is that of forgiveness.
JJ: Congratulations and thank you Derek for bringing such a beautiful film to us all.
I have read the novel by M.L. Stedman and believe director Cianfrance took what I saw in my mind and transformed it straight to screen. Fassbender, Vikander and Weisz bring such depth of emotion laying everything out bare from these broken characters that, at times, it is heartbreaking to watch. In other words, it is everything I want from a story.
If you haven’t had the opportunity to see THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS then pick up your own copy on Bluray and Digital HD. This is a film to be experienced at such a deep level that I highly recommend tissue.
In the end – love demands everything!
TWO LOVERS AND A BEAR
Dane DeHaan (The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Valerian) and Tatiana Maslany (Emmy Winner - Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series - Orphan Black) star in this dark romantic comedy that will leave you feeling bitter sweet. Roman and Lucy are two lovers living in a cold town near the North Pole but find warmth in each other.This Valentine's Day Bear Basket is our giveaway for your passionate loving movie night-in! Also, Dane DeHaan's birthday is February 6th so I know he would want the winner to get some lovin' with this package this Valentine's Day!
Coming to stunning Bluray as well as DVD and Digital HD from directors Walt Dohrn, Mike Mitchell, DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is a sing-song, dance along life of TROLLS.
Troll Village is a happy place unless you’re an unhappy Bergen! The only way a Bergen can be happy is if they have swallow a troll! The only Bergen who hasn’t experienced happiness is Prince Gristle (Christopher Mintz-Plasse). On his big day all havoc breaks loose when the royal Chef (Christine Baranski) fails to bring the Prince his prize.
That’s because the Trolls have escaped to start a fearless and fun life far away from the Bergens and the Chefs banishment. Led by King Peppy (Jeffrey Tambor), his daughter Poppy (Anna Kendrick) plans a celebration that is filled with fun, decorations, music, singing and dancing – how else would a troll celebrate?
The one troll who isn’t happy about it is Branch (Justin Timberlake) a downer troll who thinks Poppy’s celebration will do nothing but give away their location to the Bergin. But Creek (Russell Brand), DJ Suki (Gwen Stefani), Cooper (Ron Funches), Guy Diamond (Kunal Nayyar), Harper (Quvenzhane Wallis), Satin (Aino Jawo) and Chenille (Caroline Hjelt) are just a few friends who believe in Poppy.
On the outskirts of the Bergen kingdom, the Chef has been searching for the Trolls. The night of the party Branch’s prediction comes true as the party lights are a beacon for the Chef to follow and she kidnaps Poppy’s friends. Determined to get them back she and Branch (after some convincing) head toward the Bergen castle where now King Gristle lives.
There they meet Bridget (Zooey Deschanel), a Bergen who has a secret crush. Poppy decides to help the disheveled servant find love in exchange for freeing her friends. When none of them know is that all their plans may be thwarted by someone they never suspected.
But nothing stops a dancing, singing, positive Troll!
Kendrick as Poppy is delightful, funny, and just so darn cute. Her voice lends to the charming troll with a quickness of wit. Of course I am a Kendrick fan so it doesn’t surprise me that she seriously makes me laugh – a lot - in this film.
Timberlake as Branch, I mean seriously, vocally grumpy, funny, sarcastic, and facial expressions that, even though they are animated, are hilarious. I love that this is something different for Timberlake and I’m sure having a child of his own now makes this more fun than he could have realized.
Mintz-Plasse as King Gristle is a spoiled yet entertaining troll believing a myth that he defines his life by. Deschanel as Bridget is very cute and there is something to be said for colorful troll hair as a man-attractor!
Brand as Creek seems to have made a comfortable life for himself with doing vocals in animation. Winning over hearts in the DESPICABLE ME series, he has now landed himself one again with TROLLS.
Other animated voices are Jeffrey Tambor as King Peppy, John Cleese as King Gristle Sr., James Corden as Biggie, Walt Dohrn, Smidge, Rhys Darby as Bibbly, Meg DeAngelis as Moxie Dewdrop, GloZell Green as Grandma Rosiepuff, Kandee Johnson as Mandy Sparkledust, and Mike Mitchel as Darius.
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.
DreamWorks Animation brings amazing animated entertainment to films, television specials and series for the young and young at heart audiences around the world. Names one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For, DreamWorks Animations has brought iconic and beloved films such as the SHREK, MADAGASCAR, KUNG FU PANDA and HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON series along with PUSS IN BOOTS and THE CROODS. For more of what they have to offer please visit http://www.dreamworksanimation.com.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give TROLLS five tubs of popcorn out of five and it deserves every one of those tubs. This is a fun animated film filled with music, color, a fantastic story, dancing and silliness in mass amounts.
That’s important to me because my granddaughter is a lover of animated films that keep her little toes tapping and she is still dancing! In fact she loves this film so much that TROLLS will definitely become a mainstay in her every expanding DreamWorks library.
The characters each have their own defined personalities which is what makes TROLLS such a winner. There is something relatable for everyone along with all the elements we have come to love in animated films.
The TROLLS Bluray, DVD and Digital HD includes Party Mode – Sing, dance and laugh along with the Trolls in this engaging and interactive feature. On Bluray you can use your remote control to have fun on-screen moments!, Travel Through Troll Village – Cloud Guy narrates a fun exploration of Troll Village, The Potion for Stop-Motion is a behind-the-scenes and part stop-motion tutorial that explores the process of creating Poppy’s visually stunning scrapbook.
Also included is Creating Troll Magic as TROLLS Production Designer Kendal Cronkhite-Shaindlin leads a kid-friendly exploration of her role as production designer, TROLL 2 TROLL AS Poppy and Branch have a friendly debate on important topics such as “Cat vs. Dog”, Inside the Bunker with an in-depth exploration of Branch’s “special place” narrated by Cloud Guy and finally Deleted Scenes intros by Director Mike Mitchell and Co-Director Walter Dohrn.
TROLLS has love, family, friendship, acceptance, dancing, singing, and scrapbooking! The animation is so sharp and defined down to the wisps of troll hair, the fuzz on their felt outfits and the fluffs of their Cloud friend. DreamWorks has absolute set the bar high on every single and tiny detail adding so much visually. All of that gives kids what they love and adults a moment to be a kid again.
Gather up the kids and the kids at heart to experience everything TROLLS!
In the end – find your happy place!
TROLLS is a Treasure to be Shared on Bluray and DVD
Speaking with the Directing Dynamic Duo Walter Dohrn and Mike Mitchell
Currently on Digital HD and coming to Bluray/DVD on February 7th is DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment release of TROLLS.
Cuteness, dancing and song are the absolute highlights of this animated film. It tells the story of Troll Village and the very colorful inhabitants. Surrounding them are the Bergen, very grouchy creatures who believe that they can only be happy one day a year during the Trollstice!
Knowing it’s time to leave, the entire village escapes led by King Peppy (Jeffrey Tambor) who makes sure his beloved daughter Poppy (Anna Kendrick) is safe. Twenty years later the Trolls want to celebrate their Bergen-less life. There is one troll who isn’t happy about this. Branch (Justin Timberlake) tries to tell everyone that the party will bring their worst fears.
When it happens and the evil Chef (Christine Baranski) captures Poppy’s friends, she makes it her mission to find and rescue them – all well documented in her scrapbook. Talking Branch into going on the journey, the two go back to the Bergen’s town now being led by young King Gristle (Christopher Mintz-Plasse).
Poppy meets Bridget (Zooey Deschanel), a scullery maid in the castle and both discover that happiness is found within as everything the Trolls and Bergen’s have experienced is about to change!
I had the amazing opportunity to speak with directors Walt Dohrn and Mike Mitchell who have brought this wonderful animated story to us. Both directors have a history in animation as Dohrn has been part of the SpongeBob SquarePants series as well as Dexter’s Laboratory when not lending his voice in SHREK THE THIRD and PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR. He is also the voice of one of my favorite characters in TROLLS – Cloud Guy!
Mitchell had directed animation before with SHREK FOREVER AFTER and THE SPONGEBOB MOVIE: Sponge Out of Water. He also lent his voice in the films SHREK FOREVER AFTER, MEGAMIND, PUSS IN BOOTS and KUNG FU PANDA 3.
A animated combination of both of these gentlemen brings them perfectly together for TROLLS. I had the awesome opportunity to speak with Walt and Mike about the film, the impact on audiences, the ridiculously fantastic animation and a cast that is flawless.
Hi guys, thanks so much for taking the time to speak with me today. If my 18-month-old granddaughter could actually use bigger words together she might be the one wanting to talk with you.
Walt: We don’t use big words too much so we’d be fine with her on the line.
Mike: Yes, put her on the phone!
She would rather sing in her own way and dance than talk I think.
Walt: That is a very good way to be.
She has seen the film more times than I can count.
Mike: It really is a positive film for kids isn’t it? It is a feel good in these troubled times happy film.
Walt: We see the movie as one big party and encourage people to dance.
Mike: It was really amazing to see people in the theatres get up and dance. This movie does make you get up and dance.
Obviously you both have a love of animation in film with your history, but what made you want to get involved with TROLLS?
Walt: We adore music and we always wanted to get back to a film that tells a story using music in the way that we got to with TROLLS. That was one of the things is the excitement of telling a story through music more so than we have in the past and in a non-traditional way. The other thing that made us both excited about the project is that there were no established characters and we had a blank slate. It is the idea of these little stubby ugly-cute creatures with this big shock of hair.
Most people see trolls as these characters with orange or green hair with weird faces and kind of scary actually. TROLLS has taken the scary right out of them and made them adorable.
Walt: That was definitely what we were going for, making them contemporary. We made them cute and fun.
Mike: We updated them but kept the retro feel I think.
The one thing that took my breath away immediately was the crispness down to the fuzz on their vests.
Mike: That’s a real testament to the film. Walt and I know these CGI films have become so realistic. We wanted to take the technology and go in a different direction. We wanted to make a tree that seemed realistic but cover it in felt in such a way and make the ground carpet while make the leaves look like they were stitched by hand. Even this warm hand made fuzzy quality is a real testament to our Production Designer Kendal Cronkhite-Shaindlin took and went even further. Even the fire is made out of hair if you look very closely. Instead of skin, these trolls look like gummy bears that have been flocked in felt. It gives this a look like…I don’t know Walter, what would you call it?
Walt: A handcrafted feel and it gives the audience a more personal connection to the characters. They are more intimate and they look like items that you could easily hold in your hands.
The whole Troll section in the store is paradise if you haven’t been to one lately. You are right, they are colorful and there is this pull to just want to hold them!
Walt: I think all those colors just ignite a part of the brain that makes you feel good. Looking at all those colors its like with my own young daughter who plays with the TROLL toys, just vivid. Getting all those colors was important to us.
Mike: It’s like a big rainbow dream.
Walt: That’s what is so amazing to have TROLLS with the technology of video streaming and Bluray is that the older audience will take a risk now and see the film. They will realize it is for them as well.
Mike: When they see it for the first time many people are surprised and tell me it is not what they expected. It has this weird irreverent comedy that is for grownups as well as for kids.
The cast, you don’t have just a few names, you have a huge cast! It’s an amazing, were you even surprised at how many wanted to come on board with TROLLS?
Mike: Yes, it was amazing and it started with the triple threat. Every single actor starting with Anna Kendrick and then Justin Timberlake and all are tremendous actors and every single one of them has a sense of humor. They are all naturally funny, funny people!
Walt: And lastly – they can all sing! That was very important.
Mike: Zooey Deschanel can sing, she has an amazing voice. Christine Baranski is very funny and she can also sing.
Walt: You know we asked them to come in to pitch the story and talk about the characters and play them some of the music. They all fell in love with it. Justin immediately connected with the story and loved it.
Mike: Everyone, right away, came on board because of the characters and the music.
When you hear Anna and Justin speak mixed with the facial expression of their characters, you kind of forget its Anna and Justin because of how adorable the Trolls are and their personality.
Walt: That goes to the design and animation team because they are amazing at what they do. I have never worked with the level of talent and crew as I have with TROLLS.
Taking a story like this from your brain to animation to screen and to Bluray, what is that like for each of you?
Mike: For me it was a gift because there was no story initially, just an idea. It was a creature with a shock of hair and small body. We were able to create a whole world which we did and tap into everything I love like The Muppets and Dr. Seuss. We have friends that work on the strange show called Adventure Time and the challenge was to bring some of that strange comedy into a big cgi film and craft a story with everything we wanted. It was really fun.
Walt: The day to day process working with these incredible artists was so enjoyable. I think now that it’s going to Bluray and digital streaming, it is another level of excitement to actually get more people to see the movie and hear their reactions. I get people sending me photos on Facebook with their kids looking like one of the TROLLS characters and even their pets!
Mike: I get pictures of dogs wearing TROLL wigs!
Walt: I mean my cat wears one.
I want to thank you both personally from the bottom of my heart for creating something that my granddaughter will be watching for years to come and I can’t wait to see what you both do next to top that.
Walt: Thank you Jeri, it was so nice talking to you.
Mike: Thanks Jeri, that means a lot.
Coming to Bluray and DVD on February 7th and currently on Digital HD is the happiest bunch of TROLLS that will totally make your day. Get ready to sing, dance and take up scrapbooking with DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainments release of TROLLS!
Director Walter Dohrn
Director Mike Mitchell
TWO LOVERS and a BEAR is Bitter-Sweet on DVD
Coming to DVD from writer/director Kim Nguyen and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is a tale that brings cold and warmth together with TWO LOVERS and a BEAR.
Living in a town in the Arctic, Roman (Dane DeHaan) is madly in love with Lucy (Tatiana Maslany). Both have been living in seclusion to escape life sadness’s that no one else has a clue about. Understanding one another has kept them happy and in love.
That is until Lucy receives a letter accepting her to college away from their icy home and a family member who won’t leave her alone. She hesitates to tell Roman and when it finally comes out, he goes into a downward spiral that scares them both. Not listening to the polar bear that has befriended him, Roman comes close to losing it all.
Lucy convinces Roman that they need to get away together packing their snow mobiles and heading out onto the icy tundra. On their journey they both come to terms with what has been chasing them through their lives.
Two souls need to be free.
DeHaan as Roman is an intense young man who has spent a long time running from his past. Finding love with Lucy is the only thing keeping this character from falling into an emotionally destructive life. DeHaan has the incredible ability to show pain, love, fear and caring in the most unusual ways. Each of these emotions aren’t overly expressed but are found in his eyes.
Maslany as Lucy believes that the only way to run from her past is by going off to college and starting over. Telling Roman leads to the journey of being together to not only share their feelings but find a way to save each other from the fears that plague them. Maslany is the perfect counterpart to DeHaan’s character having the same pain, love, fear and caring also shown in her expressions.
These two actors together are absolutely stunning bringing a journey of discovery and intensity surrounded by the beauty and vastness of the Arctic. Director Nyugen has used amazing locations before in such films as the 2010 film CITY OF SHADOWS filmed in Tunisia with its sandstorms and WAR WITCH filmed in the Congo, TWO LOVERS and a BEAR took on the icy Iqaluit, Nunavut in Canada.
Other cast includes John Ralson as Lucy’s Father, Joseph Nakogee as Peter, Johnny Issaluk as Charlie, Yvonne E. Davidson as Emma and Jennifer Soucie as Johanna.
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.
TWO LOVERS and a BEAR is such a beautiful story of two people barely living but still managing to find one another. In the most brutal icy conditions, nothing matters to these two lovers more than finding a way to shed their personal fears. Wanting nothing between them but love, it is the battle each one faces that is stunning to experience through every frame of the film.
There are times when a review needs to be very vague because there is so much to be experienced first hand. Such is the case with TWO LOVERS and a BEAR with its beautiful and touching story surrounded by the silent pain driving them across the equally beautiful frozen plains.
Oh yes, I haven’t mentioned the bear – intentional as you will see for yourselves.
In the end – they brave their past and now they must brave the elements!
FIFTY SHADES DARKER
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VICE PRINCIPLES Comes to Bluray from HBO:
Speaking with star Kimberly Hebert Gregory
HBO brings class into session with the soon to be released Bluray, DVD and Digital Download pack of comedy that will test your take on laughter with VICE PRINCIPLES: The Complete First Season.
As two teachers plot and plan for control of the principle job at North Jackson High School, Neil Gamby (Danny McBride) and Lee Russell (Walton Coggins) are in for a big surprise.
Deciding to hire someone not from the school, the two teachers are introduced to Dr. Belinda Brown played by Kimberly Hebert Gregory. Coming into the school with high expectations, she had no idea that what was about to happen to her.
From dealing with two adults acting like teenagers, an ex-husband who hasn’t grown up either and sons who test her every move – Dr. Brown is pushed to a breaking point that is nothing short of mind boggling.
I had the grand opportunity to speak with Kimberly about her role as the principal of North Jackson High School and shares with us an in-depth look at her character.
Jeri Jacquin: Thanks for talking with me today Kimberly, how are you?
KHG: I'm doing great Jeri, thank you.
JJ: I have to tell you that I just fell for the series VICE PRINCIPLES and your character. Please tell me how you got involved with the project?
KHG: It really was an audition where they made a decision about the character early on in the pilot and I was doing another pilot at the time. Somehow it worked out that I got to go in and auditioned with Danny McBride sitting there. I was trying not to freak out; I mean it was a test with the leads! I did walk out feeling 'wow, this is a great moment, pat on the back Kimberly!' I made people who I truly respect in comedy laugh and thought it was a good day. They called back fortunately.
JJ: When you read the script did your jaw drop as much as mine did watching the series?
KHG: It did but for several different reasons. I'm actually reading everyone's part even though I'm Dr. Brown and reading it for the development of my character. I had to think about what was this world like that Belinda was going to be in. Just reading that this was taking place in a school and this was adults behaving this way in a school, I was blown away at how absurd it all seemed. The adults had really become the children.
JJ: It's almost too as if they had their own adult "high school' cliques with the rift between Gamby and Russell.
KHG: Absolutely and I think that may have been part of their desire to write something that mirrors our adults lives whether we can see it or not. We have created and do create these cliques with people who are cool and people who are not, people who deserve our wrath <we are both laughing at this point> and people who do not.
JJ: Your character is also the odd one out of the clique circle because everyone else knows what's going in at the school except Dr. Brown.
KHG: I think that's the sinister nature of it all between these three characters. You have two people who are actively working to take someone out to get a job! That’s the nature of the comedy and the story. I believe that if Belinda even suspected what they were doing, both would have been gone day one. Its worse that Gamby and Russell are both actively and jointly trying to get rid of her. The beautiful flaw in her character is that she is so overwhelmed and consumed with her personal life that even when there are clues that should pull her in get past her because she needs the job for her own sanity. Then she tries to play Gandhi in many situations.
JJ: She has such a trusting nature in ways because lets be honest, you don't expect this behavior from staff. You go in with a great nature that takes such a dark turn.
KHG: She goes in ready to clean house within the first few episodes. You discover that these guys are horrible human beings and somehow perform their jobs leaving her to think they are good people. She has no idea of the personal crisis coming her way when they do what they do to her house. They have put things together in such a way that it's hard for her to know who is doing what. I don't know that Belinda is well meaning all the time, in fact that's why I think I love this character. She had to meet them where they were at some point.
JJ: I have to ask how much fun or not fun filming the last dark scene; I think you know which one I'm talking about.
KHG: I have to be completely honest and say it was my least comfortable, least favorable and least enjoyment. That moment I can not watch. I remember how I felt as Kimberly and I didn't want the world to see me doing that. It took a lot out of me. I remember a day or two before shooting that scene Danny and I were talking and we were waiting to do a scene and he said, 'how is it going?' I mean he is such an amazing guy and such care taken for me as an actor and a person who is new to their world. So when he asked how it was going I said, 'could you just take back that scene?’ He said, 'no we can't cut that!'
JJ: If it helps, what it did for me as a viewer is that you finally see this deep vulnerability. I mean when you are a principal you have to be the strong one, you have to show you can lead and solve problems. In that moment there is a scared vulnerability that is totally relatable as I thought man, I've been there before.
KHG: I knew that too when I read it. I read that scene and thought yep, that’s the one. When we had our meeting and they asked if I had any questions I said 'yep, I have a question'. I wanted to know how the scene was going to be done and it tested my personal insecurities. It was around then that I started to grow right along with Belinda; I mean she had to have that ending. It had to be that, it had to bad. I think part of me not wanting to do it was because I was so protective of my character. I wanted her to be in the world in such a way that we could all look at her and say 'yes, I know how that feels'. I felt like that for her to give up on so much that was going on in her life, drinking again.
JJ: I'm surprised your character didn't start drinking way before that!
KHG: Her whole experience was a difficult one to deal with that’s for sure.
JJ: I know it’s hard to talk about a series or give anything away for those who haven't seen the series yet, but what would you want viewers to know about your character that maybe only you know about her?
KHG: She is such a scared woman. I think that's the biggest thing. She is afraid about everything that is going on in her life, her job and inside she's afraid. That can manifest in so many different ways so for Belinda I think as a woman who works in a male driven position, you are your most vulnerable during all of those insecurities. I think that was the secret to her for me. I knew her and I know we all know her. No matter who you are we all know that place when a part of us says 'what are we doing?'
JJ:Exactly. Thank you so much for talking to me today. You are an amazing woman to have taken on this role and do it to the point of giving your character so many facets that we can all relate to. I appreciate you so much.
KHG: I really appreciate that Jeri; I hope that I answered your questions.
JJ: You did, and it makes it more fun when we can laugh about some of it.
VICE PRINCIPLES: The First Season is a show you don’t see coming which makes it all the more worth a marathon watch. The series on Bluray, DVD and Digital Download pack this week from HBO Home Entertainment so might I suggest on this blustery weekend indoors that laughing be back in session.