Sunday, April 29, 2018


    Hollywood unveiled what it hopes will be a summer of blockbusters during a week of stars, schmoozing and boozing at the annual CinemaCon festival at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. 
  Stars were front and centre as the studios promoted their fares, which range from sequels to remakes to --hooray! quite a few original themes.

  One of the surprises was the appearance of Quentin Tarantino with Leonardo DiCaprio to talk about his upcoming controversial movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,  set in the 1960s when the Manson murders rocked Hollywood.

It not only reunites DiCaprio with Tarantino, following their teaming in 2012's Django Unchained, but also includes Brad Pitt, who starred in the director's 2009 Inglourious Basterds.

"It is the most exciting star dynamic since Paul Newman and Robert Redford," Tarantino said of DiCaprio and Pitt. "It's very hush-hush and top secret. But I can tell you that Once Upon a Time in Hollywood takes place in 1969, at the height of the counterculture hippie revolution and the height of new Hollywood. Street by street, block by block, we'll transform Los Angeles into the Hollywood of 1969."

  Other highlights of the week included:

 Cher providing a shot of adrenaline by performing the hit Abba song Fernando from the upcoming Mama Mia! Here We Go Again!. In it she plays Sophie’s (Amanda Seyfried) grandmother, an entertainer who hasn’t left Las Vegas in 25 years, in the musical sequel/prequel that’s due out July 20.

.. Footage from Bohemian Rhapsody, showing Freddie Mercury (Remi Malek who bears an uncanny resemblance to the late Queen singer) joining the band in 1970 with Brian May and Roger Taylor, the movie's joint producers. .
 .Ryan Gosling, Claire Foy and “La La Land” writer-director Damien Chazelle took the stage to “Rocket Man”to introduce the initial trailer for “First Man,” in which Gosling transitions from dancing to moonwalking as astronaut Neil Armstrong.

.Tom Cruise and director Chris McQuarrie  walking the audience through the absurdly complicated HALO (High Altitude, Low Open) parachute jump that Cruise completed 106 times, after a year of preparation, for just three usable takes in Mission Impossible: Fallout.  They were later joined onstage by co-stars Henry Cavill, Simon Pegg and Angela Bassett.

 Jamie Lee Curtis, who’s returning to battle Michael Myers 40 years later in “Halloween,” showing off scenes from the horror update. She promised that the sequel “will scare the living shit out of you.”

  And many, many more.....

Monday, April 16, 2018


  Sorry to hear about Marvel comics icon Stan Lee's problems and the web of strife he is enmeshed in following the death last year of his beloved British-born wife Joanie at the age of 95 after 70 years of marriage.

  When I talked with Lee two years ago he was fit, feisty and working on movies featuring Annihilator and Realm of the Tiger, new superheroes he had created.

  Now, sadly, aged 95, he has filed a lawsuit against his former manager Jerardo Olivarez alleging fraud, elder abuse and misappropriation of his name and likeness.

   Lee, whose creations include Spider-Man, the Hulk, Daredeveil, X-Men and Black Panther, accuses Olivarez of being one of many "unscrupulous businessmen, sycophants and opportunists" who sought to take advantage of him following the death of his wife Joanie in July. 

  The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleges that Olivarez took money from Lee's accounts and orchestrated a scheme to steal Lee's blood for a merchandising venture involving using the blood in ink for pens and stamps. 

  “There are shops in Las Vegas selling his blood,” Keya Morgan, a Lee family friend, reportedly says. “They’re stamping his blood inside the Black Panther comic books and they sell them for $500 each.”

Instagram: @beachscribe

Thursday, April 12, 2018


  He's only nine years old but he is the star of his own TV show and a very funny little boy. 

  He talks with confidence and humour and, remarkable as it seems, Iain Armitage, who is better known by his TV name Young Sheldon, is excellent company.

  With a theatrical producer mother and a father who is on stage in New York in Hamilton, Iain was always destined to be in some form of showbusiness. In fact while still in elementary school he launched his own YouTube channel, Ian Loves Theatre and gained a healthy following as a theatre critic.

  In Young Sheldon, a spin-off from The Big Bang Theory, he plays the childhood incarnation of Jim Parsons' character Sheldon Cooper.

    And because he plays a child genius in the show he is learning about plenty of esoteric subjects thanks to the lines he has to say.

   For instance, he says, "I had to talk about kinetic and linear energy and all these things I knew nothing about. So I asked my teacher and there's a formula that says 'ke equals half nb squared---kinetic energy equals mass times velocity squared. But don't ask me what it means."

  And " 'near apogee we gimbal the engine to exert torque which executes a pitch and maneuver to flip about a 180 degrees that needless to say we use a PID controller to minimize the dispersions of the landing site.'

   "My mom and my teacher explained it to me but I’m still like, huh? Because I’m literally talking about rocket science so it was very hard to figure out."

   He landed the first acting job he auditioned for, as Shailene Woodley's son Ziggy in the series Big Little Lies, explaining: "It was basically, audition, send it in, call back, do it, got the part."

   His first film role, in the drama The Glass Castle, followed and he is soon to start filming the second series of Big Little Lies.

  He has always been home schooled and now he has lessons on the set. "I like my classes and I’m excited because when I go back to Big Little Lies there’ll be a lot of other kids," he says. "It'll be good to have a lot of other kids that I can play with and talk with on set." 
  He is already so well known that he cannot walk down the street without being asked for an autograph or a selfie. And unlike some stars it does not bother him at all.
 "I’m completely fine with that, yeah," he says "People are always very nice when they ask, so I am fine with it."

Instagram: @Beachscribe


  It's always a pleasure seeing Nicole Kidman, whom I first met 21 years ago on Batman Forever. A lot of water under the bridge si...