"WORDS I would like never to hear again...Paula Deen...Benghazi...IRS 'scandal'...Snowden...
Royal baby...Emma Watson's shoes...Clarence Thomas...marriage...Mika Brzezinski...and so many more!"
This was sent me by a famous movie director who shall be nameless, yet I guess I could hear from some conservative non-liberals with a different list.
Now that the Glorious 4th of July is over, let's re-begin the summer and start again.
• Oh, but you have to admit the Edward Snowden affair has turned ridiculous; an international farce and embarrassment. I've heard many people call it "thrilling...like a James Bond or a 'Bourne' movie!" Clearly these people have never seen a James Bond or Bourne movie. Just as Mr. Snowden and his friend Glenn Greenwald, seem to be under the hilarious impression that spying--or "surveillance" if you want to use a more benign term--was invented by the Bush and Obama administrations. (Young people!)
If this is anything like a Bond movie, it reminds me of the first "Casino Royale" with David Niven. It was a send-up of the genre, riddled with "special guest stars" and bearing little relationship to the Ian Fleming novel. If the Tale of Snowden is ever made into a movie, I suggest going the comedy route. Perhaps with Adam Sandler in the lead. (I didn't say it would be good comedy.)
• Raise your hand if you predicted that Johnny Depp's "The Lone Ranger" would "under perform." Ah, I see -- unanimity. If only Congress could be as agreeable as movie fans.
Depp was on the cover of the recent Rolling Stone, all got-up in his revolting-looking Tonto makeup. (Armie Hammer plays the square-jawed Lone Ranger.) RS writer Brian Hiatt refers to the movie as "a likely blockbuster." Well, he had to. This is a Rolling Stone article on a big movie star with a big movie. One does not bite the hand, etc. It's a good piece. Hiatt is an excellent writer, and Depp not always an easy subject. The actor does attempt to explain why he continually accepts roles that require--or roles he re-interprets to require--outlandish, obscuring makeup. He says "It's easier to look at someone else's face than your own. I think for everyone. Jesus, you wake up in the morning, and you brush your teeth and you're like 'Ugh, that fucker again? You're still here?'"
But critics and now perhaps even audiences are tiring of the disguises. In this month's GQ, Tom Carson titles an article: "Join Us In Pining For the Old Johnny Depp." The article--which praises Depp's brilliance as an actor sans freakishness--ends: "What we're pinning our hopes on is that, sooner or later, Depp is going to get bored with starring in movies in which he shows up looking like a drug lord's Pez dispenser...and when he gets bored, all sorts of unpredictable things happen."
Oh, and Native Americans aren't too happy with Depp's performance either.
• I have several favorite writers in the New York Post, where I used to appear, and I'll name just two -- TV expert Linda Stasi and theater's Michael Riedel.
Only a few days ago, the latter who is royally loved and hated on Broadway, wrote a story about how the giant Nederlander family was backing the maestro of musicals -- Tommy Tune --in several new ventures. Riedel has a line on the real and true nature of what's happening in theater and he is usually right! Not long ago I went to the Friars Club for Terry Hodge Taylor's "Hall of Fame" Fellowship. Tommy Tune paid a heart-felt tribute to the entire Jimmy Nederlander family for what they had meant in his life, especially Mr. Nederlander the elder.
Reporter Riedel insists that they are quietly backing several ventures by Tommy Tune--one in London where the nine-times-Tony-winner is looking over "Top Hat: The Musical" which is based on the classic movie starring Fred and Ginger. And also in L.A. where Tommy is working on a musical about Studio 54, which will open there in California in the fall. (You could go back and read Riedel on page 37 of the Post for June 28th. Or, you can take my word for it.
• My director/producer/writer friend Linda Yellen lives way downtown in Greenwich Village. I spoke to her after last Sunday's Gay Pride celebrations, which are always riotous. She said: "All I could hear, even when I closed my windows was the clamor on the streets below. The entire apartment building seemed deserted. There was nobody in the gym, the pool, people seemed to have vanished. When I got to the lobby of my apartment, the doorman said cheerfully, 'Better be careful out there!' I looked out, and indeed the front of the building was surrounded and people were pressed against the glass doors. And then I realized what it reminded me of--the creepy, all but empty building, the masses outside. It was a gay zombie movie! I had to laugh, and of course I had to go out. It was exhilarating but exhausting. When I got back, my doorman asked, 'Was it wild? Did you have fun?' I told him I was fine, had fun, and hadn't been bitten. Not that that would have been a bad thing!"