The global fan event for "The Hobbit," hosted by Anderson Cooper (?), gave some insight into the newest character in the Peter Jackson Hobbit-verse: Evangeline Lilly as Tauriel, a Silvan Elf of Mirkwood.
Go over to the Entertainment Weekly site to learn more about what a huge fan she is of the Tolkien books and how much fun it is being the only girl on a set full of gentlemenly Hobbits and Dwarves and Elves. She also revealed that she looked to Tinkerbell for character inspiration. (In the interview, she's even wearing her hair like the bun headed Disney version of Tink.)
No one keeps his fans more in the loop that Jackson, who vlogs regularly during production. So if you like context to the magic you see onscreen -- with effects supervised by local Oscar winner Joe Letteri, I should add -- check on the notoriously barefoot director from time to time at The Hobbit Blog. You can also check out Ed Sheeran preparing the song "I See Fire" for the second movie installment in "The Hobbit" trilogy, "The Desolation of Smaug."
There's a good chance that "How Soon is Now?," once called the " 'Stairway to Heaven' of the '80s," will be performed on consecutive nights at Mr. Smalls.
Of course, Morrissey won't be singing the woeful and dizzying epic. The song's brilliant co-writer and guitarist Johnny Marr will make it part of his set when he plays his first-ever solo show here on Tuesday.
The night before, Smalls hosts the pride of Boise, Built to Spill, which came along in 1992 to become the pre-eminent indie-rock guitar band of that decade. Doug Martsch and company have been slipping a sizzling version of "How Soon is Now?" into their encores.
Built to Spill has a way with covers, as you know if you've ever heard them do Neil Young's "Cortez the Killer" or Dino Jr.'s "Sludgefeast." On Sunday, the night of Lou Reed's death, BTS did a 22-minute version of "Sister Ray."
Monday's is the first Built to Spill stop here since playing a typically stellar show in 2011 at the Levi's Presents: Benefit Braddock gig at the dark, dilapidated library theater.
This will be another trip back here without a new album, as BTS has yet to follow up on 2009's "There is No Enemy." There's still formal word on what we can expect next...
The show is at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22-$25; mrsmalls.com.
Here is a setlist from Thursday night at Irving Plaza in New York:
Goin' Against Your Mind
Center of the Universe
In The Morning
Get a Life
Abba Zaba (Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band cover)
Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss
Carry the Zero
I Would Hurt a Fly
(Don't Fear) The Reaper (Blue Öyster Cult cover)
How Soon Is Now? (The Smiths cover)
Entertainment Weekly has clip from “Out of the Furnace,” the movie shot in Braddock and elsewhere in the Pittsburgh area about a year and a half ago. (In case any confusion still exists, it has nothing to do with the novel “Out of This Furnace.")
Christian Bale sings the praises of director Scott Cooper: “It’s stunning. Scott is a hell of a director. It’s wonderful and I keep going in and watching it,” Bale said of the movie.
Here’s the link to EW:
“It sort of hypnotized all of us and the great thing for me is how much has come through in the end. As an actor you hope for the best, and sometimes you get experiences with the work when you’re really surprised it didn’t happen on film. There’s nothing you can do about that – that’s up to the director and editor to muster with what you’ve given them. But this one – holy crap! It really came through,” he told the magazine.
Below, part of a blog post I wrote back in May 2012 which may provide a clue about the prison in the movie opening Dec. 6:
So far, so great.
Three months ago, it looked as if "Out of the Furnace" might land in Lowell, Mass., home of "The Fighter." Or anywhere but here.
Now the drama starring Christian Bale and Casey Affleck as brothers and third-generation steelworkers is two weeks away from wrapping up filming here at such locations as Braddock, North Braddock, the Carrie Furnaces and a Koppel steel mill. In addition to Bale and Affleck, the cast includes Forest Whitaker, Woody Harrelson, Sam Shepard, Zoe Saldana and Willem Dafoe.
"Pittsburgh is a great place to shoot," Jeff Waxman, executive producer of "Out of the Furnace," told roughly 75 people at a Sunday event organized by the Pennsylvania Film Industry Association at the Sheraton at Station Square.
They didn't learn much in terms of spoilers – some shooting was done at a former prison in Moundsville, W.Va., where local actor Tony Amen shared a cell with Bale – but they got free advice from Waxman and unit production manager Julie Hartley,anecdotes from their careers and one very good Sylvester Stallone impersonation from Waxman whose first paying job was on "Rhinestone."
They emphasized the importance of the commonwealth's tax credit for film production with Pennsylvania joining Louisiana, Georgia, New Mexico, New York and Massachusetts as the most competitive states. "You really need to stretch the dollar," Waxman said, with "Out of the Furnace" tapping into money another production no longer could use.
Director Scott Cooper swung through Pittsburgh in early 2010 while promoting "Crazy Heart" and fell in love with Braddock and wrote the script for the region. "We're having a great experience. Julie put together probably the best crew I've ever worked with in 25 years. Most of them are in this room," the producer said, to applause.
In the movie, Affleck is a returning Iraq War veteran while Bale is a steelworker. "It's very interesting and it's very authentic," and that includes the presence of locals on screen. "The actors are loving it, it's going to be a really, really, really good film," Waxman predicted.
The movie allowed Waxman, a huge Steelers fan, to meet QB Ben Roethlisberger and to indulge in some retail therapy when shooting got especially stressful. That's how he ended up with 17 or so Steelers T-shirts, he joked.
Photo above by Kerry Hayes showing Zoe Saldana, Scott Cooper and Christian Bale.
I was at the SouthSide Works Cinema Thursday night for a preview of "The Best Man Holiday" and heard the auditorium down the hall with “Thor: The Dark World” was packed – and someone came dressed as Loki.
Thor will be the No. 1 movie of the weekend. The only question is just how much big it will be. The 3-D will help the bottom line, no doubt, although unless you're going to a theater with the best projection possible, I would skip the 3-D and stick with 2-D.
Here’s a look at some Marvel numbers courtesy of Rentrak which tracks movies and other sources of entertainment.