Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

Good Sunday Morning!


It's already sunny and 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees Celsius) here in New York City. That wouldn't be odd if we were in April/May; but we're in February, when one expects frigid temperatures and icy roads. Meteorologists are predicting a relatively warm week, which I'm happy about.

So, what's happened since my previous post on Friday afternoon? Well, you might have heard that there's a little war of words and opinions going on in my previous post on black film festivals. If you haven't been following the thread, head on over there after you read this and catch up.

Other than that, you may or may not have seen the following:

- Tyler Perry is working on a sequel to 2007's Why Did I Get Married, considered by many to be his best work thus far. I'm not a good judge of the man's work, so I'll reserve my comments. I did see Why Did I Get Married, which I reviewed extensively, albeit negatively, on a previous podcast. Wilson Morales at AOL BlackVoices interviewed Mr Perry. In the interview he talks about his motivations for the sequel tentatively called, Why Did I Get Married Too. Ingenious, right? Check out the interview HERE.

- Speaking of Tyler Perry... he's apparently going after Diana Ross to star in a future project, which he says already has a completed script. It's titled A Jazz Man's Blues. No idea what the film is about. But I'm sure a little digging will reveal something. I'm just being lazy right now. When was the last time Diana appeared in anything? Is she even looking for work? Will she accept TP's offer? Do you care?

- Christian Bale finally apologized for his onset tirade, which I'm sure everyone with access to an Internet connection has heard! He appeared on some morning radio talk show, I believe in L.A., and offered the following statement, courtesy of SlashFilm:

“The thing I really want to stress is that I have NO confusion what-so-ever. I was out of order beyond belief. I acted like a punk. I regret that and there is nobody that has heard that tape that is hit harder by it than me. I make no excuses for it, it is inexcusable.”

“In [T2] you will meet Sarah Connor. And she is in an insane asylum—why is she there? Because she is crazy. Now I play John Connor her son, and on the day that all of this happened, the scene that we were doing, I was trying to show a little of that in-the-blood craziness, and it went a little wrong… I took it way too far, and I completely mixed up fact and fiction. I’m half John Connor, I’m half Christian there.”

“I’ve not only talked with [DP Shane Hurlbut], we’ve resolved this completely. That very day we kept working for a number of hours. Listen when I’m saying I’m not coming back on that set if he’s still hired, it’s hot air. I don’t believe that. I have no intention of getting anybody fired.”

“And another thing: a lot of people that I was a bully to this guy. That’s an insult to Shane. He is a big guy. I couldn’t have bullied that guy if I tried. He’s much bigger than me—he’s an ex-friggin football player.”

HAH! So, dude went all split personality on poor Shane Hurlbut! And what kind of name is Hurlbut? Hurl-Butt. Doesn't sound much like a DP to me :o)

- Thanks to Sergio for the heads-up on this one. I won't even comment; I'm sure many of you will have something to say about it. According to The Hollywood Reporter, a biopic on the life of civil rights leader, Angela Davis, is in the works. Franco-Algerian producer-writer-director Rachid Bouchareb - relatively unknown around these parts - is the man behind the mission.

Bouchareb, who will produce the movie through his French production company, plans to shoot in summer 2010 with a budget in the region of $20 million to $30 million. The script is by novelist Yasmina Khadra, whose book The Attack has been optioned by Focus Features. No cast is yet attached, but Bouchareb has his lead actress firmly in mind: "I want Beyonce Knowles to play Angela Davis," he said. "It's a great dramatic role for her."

Ahahahaha...! I know, I know... I said I wouldn't comment, but, I couldn't resist! Beyonce as Angela Davis? Come on man! I've watched her "Single ladies" music video countless times, and, she certainly looks and sounds really good in that one, especially when she does that plunging hip swirling dance move. But, Angela Davis? Umm... No.

And before anyone chastises me for dumping on Beyonce... let me say this - there are a dozen other black actresses... genuine actresses... skilled actresses... actresses who could really use the work and the money... who should be considered for what could be such a plump role, before my beloved Beyonce Knowles. What's he basing his decision on? This isn't necessarily a knock against Beyonce. I respect her talents and accomplishments... genuinely so. But it pains me to see good black actresses get passed over, repeatedly - especially for potentially great roles like this one! So, I really hope Beyonce realizes her own limitations and turns down the role, if it is indeed offered.

- Finally, no updates on the tussle between Lionsgate and The Weinsteins over distribution rights for Lee Daniel's Sundance hit, Push. I'm hoping some agreement is reached sooner than later, so that we can see this thing in theatres before all the excitement starts to wane. In the meantime, courtesy of Ms Solshine of the Reel Artsy blog, below is a mash-up of footage from Sundance press conferences and actual, never-before-seen footage from the film. Enjoy:


  1. Jeremiah J said...

    I must say that hearing that Beyonce might play Angela Davis makes my stomache sick. Again here we are playing celebrity in the lead game instead of choosing the right person for the character. That is a great character to play and I hate that they might do justice with it by giving it to a singer who has shown very little acting skills and more importantly the type of depth and intelligence that is needed to play someone like Angela Davis.

    Yes Beyonce has gotten a little bit better, but to play this role is like Mary J. Blige playing Nina Simone. Give me a break. I prefer Mary playing Nina Simone over Beyonce screwing up Angela Davis.

    Black people are the only racial group to choose celebrity over real skills when it comes to movie projects. Then we wonder why we are not respected in most industries when it comes to the critical aspect of it. We are looked at as entertainers, but not real artist. Until we can overcome that by refocusing on who we are juxtuapose to trying to fit in and be like someone else, we will forever be a joke.

  2. Black Film Academy said...

    Wow, Beyonce? I'd originally heard that Halle Berry was amped and up for the part. She was even in talks to produce the film. I don't know which would be worst, quite frankly.

  3. Anonymous said...

    obenson i love you and ms solshine too. i was starting to feel like i was a person in need of fix googling for some fricking footage of this movie every other day. i hate to watch too much footage before but who knows when i will get to see this film. this is a big spoiler. i can see why it's getting the reviews it's getting. the idea touches me b/c i know a precious.

    would it be wrong to say i can't imagine beyonce knowing who angela davis is? here's my thought on the statement that beyonce wants to win an oscar. i think it will take a role that suits her or she will have to take the halle route.

    i hate to be the bad critic(lol i love saying that) but do you guys really think they are going to make a great film about angela d? i mean i doubt it will be any better than these made for TV movies about the civil rights movement. i'm just saying. unless this is supposed to be beyonce's last king of scotland.

  4. Jeremiah J said...

    I agree with you "must love movies." I can't imagine Beyonce knowing who Angela Davis is as well.

    If a movie is made about Angela Davis, I hope it is a real Angela Davis movie and not like Denzel in American Gangster. He was more like a senator than a country NI*** from the south. I can say that because I am country myself. Smile.

  5. Aziza said...

    I'd like to see what kind of films Tyler Perry will be producing in 5 years or 10 years. Will they be the same kinds of movies he's making now or will he grow and evolve as a filmmaker? I hope he does, because he hasn't shown that he wants to since his first film.

    And Beyonce as Angela Davis? Please... I'd give the role to Taraji P Henson.

    It's a sad state of affairs when all of us are looking forward to just one film this year. I'm looking forward to seeing "Push" like everyone else but I hope it doesn't end up being the only game in town for the whole year.

  6. Matty said...

    i agree with what Jeremiah and Must Love said on the Angela Davis movie. Is this something to be taken seriously? With that kind of budget, the filmmaker will probably put more emphasis on making a commercial movie (to repay investors, etc) than something real. I'm thinking more like "Talk To Me," which I didnt' care for.

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