W. (2008) - News Poster

(I) (2008)

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Five Portrayals of Politicians In Movies

The news must have had every paid up member of the Conservative Party choking on their breakfast cup of tea. In a thousand Home Counties bungalows, men called Jeremy or Brian must have reached for their writing paper and fountain pens to compose a strongly worded letter to the Telegraph. The reason behind their outrage was the actress Meryl Streep. Or to put it more precisely, not Meryl Streep herself. Jeremy and Brian probably quite like Meryl Streep. What they can’t tolerate is the idea of Meryl Streep, American as crippling medical bills, donning a wig, putting on an accent and playing Margaret Thatcher.

The Iron Lady opens in cinemas this week. Opinion on Thatcher as a person might be divided, but opinion on Streep’s portrayal of the woman who invented Mr Whippy icecream and kicked the Argies out of a sodden little pile of rock called the Falklands,
See full article at SoundOnSight »

Brolin Still Upset By W Criticism

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Brolin Still Upset By W Criticism
Josh Brolin is still sore about the criticism his George W. Bush biopic W received from Republican pals who didn't even see the Oliver Stone film.

Many assumed the movie would simply bash the ex-u.S. President, a Republican, and stayed away - but Brolin insists the film wasn't what it seemed.

He says, "They want to criticise it because you think it's Oliver Stone, it's Josh Brolin, who people perceive as very, very left wing, which I'm not necessarily. They think it's gonna be heavy hitting; it's gonna be, like, a sledgehammer on George Bush and we didn't do that.

"We wanted to know the guy that never should have been president and probably should have run a baseball team - and been very happy doing it."

Brolin insists the Republican friends who did see the film were surprised by it: "They were like, 'It's kinda sad, isn't it?'"

The actor has heard that Bush himself saw the film - and liked it.

Appearing on late night U.S. chat show Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday, the actor revealed, "I heard that he saw it actually. Oliver went to China and talked to (Bill) Clinton and he said that Clinton had loaned W his DVD of it.

"I don't know if that's true or not, but I love him, like, two in the morning in this blue glow of sitting at home and, like, maybe tears coming down his face.

"He said, 'I liked it very much, I thought it was kinda sad in some parts, but I liked it.'"

Reactions from the Oscar nominees

Reactions from the Oscar nominees
Best actress nominee Angelina Jolie said of the recognition she earned for "Changeling": "Working with Clint Eastwood was a reward in itself that will last me a lifetime. To receive a nomination from the Academy on top of that is a privilege beyond any expectation. It has been an exceptional year for acting, and I am honored to be in the company of these talented actors whose performances all deserve this recognition. I am also happy that 'Kung Fu Panda' also was noticed by the Academy and proud to be a part of a film my entire family loves so much."

*****

Nominated for his supporting role as county supervisor Dan White in the Harvey Milk biopic "Milk," Josh Brolin -- who also played President Bush in the 2008 release "W." -- said he was pleased to be recognized for his work on the "important" film. " 'W.' was probably the most difficult job in film that I've ever done because you carry his age from a young age through (his presidency). 'Milk' was different," he said. "When I read it, I was so emotional and taken with the story that I just wanted to do this story. It's a timely story, and as timely as it can be with Prop. 8. So obviously, it's an important movie and a very visceral film at that."
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Sellers Tops Presidential List

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Sellers Tops Presidential List
Peter Sellers' portrayal of President Merkin Muffley in cult movie Dr. Strangelove has topped a new list of fictional and real-life U.S. leaders.

Sellers' famous role in the 1964 Stanley Kubrick film beat out Harrison Ford's James Marshall (Air Force One) and Kevin Kline's William H. Mitchell (Dave) in the CNN Inauguration Day countdown.

The only real-life leader to make the list is outgoing U.S. leader George W. Bush, as portrayed by Josh Brolin in W. He comes in at number 10.

The full list is:

1. Peter Sellers as President Merkin Muffley (Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb); 2. Harrison Ford as James Marshall (Air Force One); 3. Kevin Kline as William H. Mitchell (Dave); 4. John Travolta as Governor Jack Stanton (Primary Colors); 5. Michael Douglas as President Andrew Shepherd (The American President)

Brolin And Wright Escape Bar Brawl Charges

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Brolin And Wright Escape Bar Brawl Charges
Actor Josh Brolin and his W co-star Jeffrey Wright will have charges relating to a Louisiana bar brawl last summer dropped after striking a deal with prosecutors.

The two stars joined director Oliver Stone, other castmembers and members of the film crew at the Stray Cat bar in Shreveport in July to celebrate the completion of shooting on the George W. Bush biopic.

But their night was cut short when a fight broke out at the venue, and Brolin and Wright were arrested and showered with pepper spray.

The pair was charged with interfering with a cop during the incident, in which Wright was also tasered.

However, following negotiations between the actors' attorney Blair Berk and the police, the charges will be dropped if they stay out of trouble until 11 March.

A settlement hearing was held on Tuesday, although Brolin was not in attendance.

Slumdog Millionaire Leads Critics' Circle Awards

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Slumdog Millionaire Leads Critics' Circle Awards
Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire is leading the way at the 2009 London Critics' Circle Film Awards with six nominations.

Boyle gets two nods, for Best Director and British Director Of The Year. The India-set drama will compete in the British Film Title category and the movie's star Dev Patel is up for two awards including British Actor of The Year.

Bobby Sands drama Hunger, Mike Leigh's comedy Happy-Go-Lucky, and Ron Howard's Frost/Nixon have five nominations each.

Frost/Nixon is up for Film Of The Year alongside Brad Pitt fantasy The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Sean Penn drama Milk, Pixar animation Wall-E and Mickey Rourke's The Wrestler.

Kate Winslet also gets two nominations, in the Best Actress and Best British Actress categories, for her work in Revolutionary Road and The Reader, while the late Heath Ledger is leading competition for the Best Actor Prize. Also nominated in that category are Rourke (The Wrestler), Penn (Milk), Josh Brolin (W) and Frank Langella (Frost/Nixon).

Dame Judi Dench will be handed the Dilys Powell Award For Outstanding Contribution To Cinema at the London ceremony which will take place on 4 February.

W.

W.
Casting Director: Sarah Finn Director: Oliver Stone Starring: Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Banks, Thandie Newton, Richard Dreyfuss, Jeffrey Wright The Pitch: A look at the life of America's 43rd president, George W. Bush (Brolin), and the people who shaped his world."The great thing about casting," says casting director Sarah Finn, "is if you ask me how much time does it take to cast a film, the answer is always, 'As much time as I have.' If you give me a year, I can work for a year. And if you give me two weeks, then we'll figure it out." Casting Oliver Stone's biopic W., about the exiting President George W. Bush, fell between these two extremes, but definitely closer to the short end. Normally, Finn likes around 12 weeks to cast a project, but due to the film's subject, Stone wanted it out before the election in November, so
See full article at Backstage »

Satellite Nominees are an Embarrassment of Snubs

The International Press Academy announced their nominees for the 13th Annual Satellite Awards and it is a mixed bag of snubs across the board and further proof the idea of separating Drama, Comedy and Musicals is just about the dumbest idea around as they are Really reaching by including Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist as a comedy or a musical. I would even say Happy-Go-Lucky and Vicky Cristina Barcelona don't fit the category. What was so funny about Poppy being attacked by her driving instructor? Where was the comedy in VCB? Gimme a break. it's going to be even worse when the Globes nominate something like High School Musical 3 and Mamma Mia! instantly giving them some kind of credibility. However, category distinction aside the absence of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button from all categories makes me wonder if any of these people even saw all the films. Take for
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

Man Arrested For Slaying Of W News Anchor

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Arkansas police have charged a man with the murder of the news anchor who made a cameo appearance in Oliver Stone movie W.

Anne Pressly, 26, was found unconscious in her bed on 20 October with severe head and body wounds. She failed to recover from the horrific injuries and was declared dead at St. Vincent Infirmary Medical Center in Arkansas five days later.

Her murder came just a week after the release of Stone's George W. Bush biopic, in which she plays a news reporter.

Local authorities have now arrested 28-year-old Curtis Vance on suspicion of the slaying.

Police spokesman Lieutenant Terry Hastings confirmed Vance had been taken into custody on Wednesday night, after cops were alerted to his location following a late-night news conference, where he was revealed as the key suspect.

It had been feared Vance was armed with a pistol and "lots of extra ammunition", but he was found unarmed when cops swooped on his home in Little Rock.

Vance has been charged with capital murder based on "a very, very solid case due to solid detective work", the representative said. However, the authorities have refused to go into further detail about what led them to name Vance as their main suspect.

Brolin Hoping To Bring Great Speeches To The Big Screen

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Brolin Hoping To Bring Great Speeches To The Big Screen
Josh Brolin is hoping to bring America's greatest speeches to the big screen with the help of stars like Matt Damon, Sean Penn and Pink.

The W star admits he has always been fascinated with the speeches of great Americans, from presidents to civil rights leaders, like Martin Luther King, Jr. - and now he's hoping to turn the star-studded readings into a motion picture event.

The People Speak is based on an idea from activists Anthony Arnove and Howard Zinn.

He explains, "Anthony and Howard created live performances of some of the speeches that have been taken out of people's history in the United States; some anonymous and some are famous from John Brown, which is the speech I perform, to Martin Luther King.

"We created something at the Majestic Theater in Boston and had Viggo Mortensen, Danny Glover, David Strathairn, Marisa Tomei and had 19 cameras film that. We did another one at the Malibu Performing Arts Center. I got Sean (Penn) to do that, Eddie Vedder, Taj Mahal, Pink, Benjamin Bratt, and Don Cheadle.

"I'm very proud of this. We have 96 hours of film that we're cutting together and I met with nine cable networks in New York and everybody is very excited about it."

No local films, plenty of politics at Turin

London -- In a country that loves a movie with political content, Oliver Stone's "W." is sure to ignite healthy debate when today's Italian premiere kicks off the nine-day Turin Film Festival.

The timing certainly couldn't be better, coming little more than two weeks after a U.S. presidential election that still has Europe buzzing.

But Barack Obama's election to the White House was arguably less surprising -- and certainly less controversial -- than this year's lineup, which is completely void of Italian films.

Arguably the country's third most prominent film festival, after Venice and Rome, the Northern Italian film jamboree will come to a close with "The Edge of Love," directed by John Maybury.

Under the watchful eye of filmmaker Nanni Moretti, now in his second year as artistic director, the festival has no Italian films because, according to Moretti, there simply weren't any titles that were up to snuff.
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Brolin Rages Against Gay Marriage Ban

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Brolin Rages Against Gay Marriage Ban
W star Josh Brolin has waded into the Proposition 8 row - he is furious at the decision to ban gay marriages in California.

Same-sex unions were legalised in the state in May, but the legislation was reversed early this month when the majority of voters backed the bill to reintroduce the ban.

And Brolin has revealed his anger at the ban - blasting those who voted in favour of Proposition 8.

He says, "Who gives a s***! Who cares!... Doesn't mean (gay and lesbian people) are going to stop kissing in the streets, just cause they can't get married. And that's the issue for the religious, that it's visible and it's always going to be visible, it ain't going to go away.

"Gay life is more mainstream, but at the same time, things like this happen and you go, 'You got to be kidding me!' especially in California... I think it's awful, but I understand it, everybody has their perspective."

Streisand Sparred With Brolin Over W Role

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Streisand Sparred With Brolin Over W Role
Actor Josh Brolin sparred with his liberal step-mother Barbra Streisand - when she protested his role in new George W. Bush biopic W.

The singer has been an outspoken opponent of Bush throughout his two terms in the White House.

And according to Brolin, Streisand freaked out when he told her he would be playing him in Oliver Stone's movie.

Brolin tells the Times of London, "She said, 'How much are you getting paid? I told her it was a very low fee. She said, 'Then why are you doing it?'"

But the actor insists the legendary star's snub didn't give him second thoughts.

He adds, "She was furious and would not talk to me. I kind of liked that one."

James Cromwell Hurt In Bike Crash

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James Cromwell Hurt In Bike Crash
Babe star James Cromwell is recovering in hospital after a bicycle crash in a California canyon on Sunday.

The 68-year-old actor broke his collarbone and suffered a partially deflated lung when he fell from his bike during a training ride in Los Angeles.

Cromwell's publicist Nancy Seltzer, who claims the actor is a "serious cyclist", insists he has been treated for his injuries and is likely to be released on Monday.

The star can currently be seen in movie theatres playing George Bush Sr. in Oliver Stone's Bush Jr. biopic W.

Stone's Tribute To Slain News Anchor

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Stone's Tribute To Slain News Anchor
Oliver Stone has paid tribute to the murdered news anchor who made a cameo appearance in his latest movie W.

Anne Pressly, 26, was found unconscious in bed on 20 October with severe head and body wounds. She failed to recover from the horrific injuries and was declared dead at St. Vincent Infirmary Medical Center in Arkansas on Saturday 25 October.

Her as-yet-unsolved murder came just a week after the release of Stone's George W. Bush biopic, in which she plays a news reporter.

Stone says of the tragic journalist, "We found her to be a vibrant source of energy, life and kindness. In the time she had, she filled it with a big soul."

Dreyfuss Makes West End Comeback After Four Years

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Dreyfuss Makes West End Comeback After Four Years
Actor Richard Dreyfuss is preparing to return to the West End stage - four years after he was sensationally fired from musical The Producers.

The Jaws star has been coaxed back into theatre work by Kevin Spacey, who is the artistic director at London's Old Vic Theatre, to star in the venue's new play Complicit.

Dreyfuss' last experience in stage work ended in embarrassment following his dismissal from Mel Brooks' The Producers in 2004.

Theatre bosses at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane stated Dreyfuss was unable to "to fulfil the rigours of the role" due to a shoulder injury.

And the actor, who is currently garnering praise for his turn as Dick Cheney in Oliver Stone's W, can't wait to prove his worth to theatregoers.

He jokes, "I'm very excited to have a chance of not being fired before the opening."

And Oscar winner Spacey is glad to have a fellow Academy Award honoree on board for the project.

He says, "I'm thrilled that we are being given this opportunity to work together. It's great that he's coming to London and I think audiences are in for a real treat."

The play, in which Dreyfuss will play an award-winning reporter who battles the U.S. Supreme Court over his freedom of press beliefs, will kick-off in January 2009.

Brolin Swaps Gambling For Wall Street

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Brolin Swaps Gambling For Wall Street
Hollywood actor Josh Brolin enjoys trading on the stock market - because it stops him gambling on horse races.

The W star admits the profits he's garnered from his Wall Street decisions have allowed him the freedom to pick and choose which films he makes.

And stock market trading gives him the same buzz as betting - without the odds stacked against him.

Brolin says, "I like to do it. It enables me to offset movies that I might otherwise have had to do for the money.

"Plus it stopped me gambling. I used to go to Vegas and play the horses, and then I realised how ridiculous that was. There is no winning in gambling, but there is on the stock market. Maybe it's not trillions of dollars. Maybe it's just five bucks for lunch. Who cares, it's all good."

Banks Worries About Parents' Big Freeze

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Banks Worries About Parents' Big Freeze
Actress Elizabeth Banks is hoping hit movies will afford her the chance to make her parents' lives easier - because she worries they'll freeze to death in Massachusetts every winter.

The W star admits she has had her fair share of financial struggles, but it's nothing compared to what her folks have put up with over the years.

She tells WENN, "I grew up in a working class town in Massachusetts, where it's freezing in the winter... My parents still struggle every day. I'm worried about them heating their houses this winter.

"The lowest point, which I didn't realise was low at the time, was when my mother said, 'Let's go to grammie's house and take baths tonight. That'll be fun.' It turns out we were going to grammie's because we didn't have hot water."

Brolin Feared For Health During Bar Brawl

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Brolin Feared For Health During Bar Brawl
Actor Josh Brolin feared he'd meet his death on the night he was arrested by police after a fight at a bar, because the situation had rapidly gotten out of hand.

The star was celebrating the completion of filming on George W. Bush biopic W with director Oliver Stone and members of the cast and crew when the incident occurred.

Brolin, his co-star Jeffrey Wright, and five crewmembers were arrested when they allegedly got involved in a fight between locals at the Stray Cat bar in Shreveport, Louisiana in July.

And Brolin admits he had other concerns on his mind than be scared of what was happening to them.

He says, "When it started escalating I thought, 'Is this the night when I get tasered and have a heart attack?'

"But I was more confused than scared. Confused and befuddled. I was looking around in total shock - or I was trying to; I had Mace in my eyes at the time."

W Actress/Anchorwoman Dies From Beating Injuries

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Latest: American news anchor and W movie actress Anne Pressly has died in hospital, five days after she was found beaten and stabbed at her Arkansas home.

Pressly, 26, was found unconscious in bed last week with severe head and body wounds. She failed to recover from the horrific injuries and was declared dead at St. Vincent Infirmary Medical Center in Arkansas on Saturday.

A statement released by her parents reads, "It was our hope, as was yours, that Anne would overcome the injuries inflicted upon her in the brutal attack at her home.

"We were with her in her last moments, and although our hearts are broken, we are at the same time comforted by our faith knowing that Anne is now with our heavenly father."

Pressly, who hosted a news show on ABC's Arkansas affiliate, Katv, plays a conservative broadcaster who supports President George W. Bush's Iraq campaign in Oliver Stone movie W.
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