Dec 11
2019

The bad news first – Meryl Streep did not score an individual Screen Actors Guild Award for “Big Little Lies” this morning. A possible “snub” was plausibe since the SAG Awards do not split categories between leading and supporting actresses in television, so you either make it into the lead category, or you don’t. However, Streep and the rest of the “Big Little Lies” cast received a nomination for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series, which is the SAG’s equivalent for the main drama prize. So it’s good news really, “Big Little Lies” was an ensemble piece from the start and this way, each character actor from a show gets a due recognition for their fine work on season two. “Big Little Lies” shares the category with “The Crown”, “Game of Thrones”, “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Stranger Things”. The 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards will be handed out during a live ceremony on Sunday, January 19, 2020.

Best Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
Big Little Lies
The Crown
Game of Thrones
The Handmaid’s Tale
Stranger Things

Dec 09
2019

Congratulations to Meryl Streep for receiving a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television for “Big Little Lies”. She shares the category with Patricia Arquette (The Act), Helena Bonham Carter (The Crown), Toni Collette (Unbelievable) and Emily Watson (Chernobyl). Big Little Lies has received a total 3 nominations, also for Best Television Series Drama and in the Lead Actress category for Nicole Kidman. Little Women has received 2 nominations – for Best Actress in a Drama (Saoirse Ronan) and for Alexandre Desplat’s score. However, the film was “overlooked” in the Best Picture, Director and Screenplay categories. The three-hour telecast hosted by Ricky Gervais will air live on NBC coast to coast Sunday, January 5, 2020, at 8:00 p.m. EST/5:00 p.m. PST.

Big Little Lies – 3 nominations
Best Television Series – Drama
Best Actress in a Drama Series – Nicole Kidman
Best Supporting Actress – Meryl Streep

Little Women – 2 nominations
Best Actress (Drama) – Saoirse Ronan
Best Score – Alexandre Desplat

Dec 09
2019

Today, Meryl Streep has received two Critics Choice Award nominations – as part of the ensemble of “Little Women” and as Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for “Big Little Lies”. She shares the category with six other ladies – Helena Bonham Carter (The Crown), Gwendoline Christie (Game of Thrones), Laura Dern (Big Little Lies), Audra McDonald (The Good Fight), her Hope Springs co-star Jean Smart (Watchmen) and Susan Kelechi Watson (This Is Us). In the ensemble category, “Little Women” competes against Bombshell, The Irishman, Knives Out, Marriage Story, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood and Parasite. The winners will be revealed at the star-studded Critics’ Choice Awards gala, which will once again be hosted by film, television, and stage star Taye Diggs, and broadcast live on The CW Television Network on Sunday, January 12 from 7:00 – 10:00 pm ET (delayed PT).

Little Women – 9 nominations
Best Picture
Best Actress – Saoirse Ronan
Best Supporting Actress – Florence Pugh
Best Acting Ensemble
Best Director – Greta Gerwig
Best Adapted Screenplay – Greta Gerwig
Best Production Design – Jess Gonchor, Claire Kaufman
Best Costume Design – Jacqueline Durran
Best Score – Alexandre Desplat

Big Little Lies – 3 nominations
Best Actress in a Drama Series – Nicole Kidman
Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series – Laura Dern
Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series – Meryl Streep

Dec 07
2019

Back in June, when “Big Little Lies” premiered, critics were handing out imaginary trophies to Meryl Streep the moment she appeared on screen. She was the destined frontrunner to pick up all the awards for the second season of HBO’s hit show. But even back in June, “Big Little Lies” was destined to be a long shot for awards since it wasn’t eligble for the 2019 Primetime Emmy Awards due to its release date (certainly an effort by HBO to not interfer with the final season of “Game of Thrones”). That means, when the show is eligble in 2020, its airtime has been almost one and a half years in the past. Meryl has two other supporting roles this year – the grieving widow in “The Laundromat” and the mean aunt in “Little Women” – although neither of these parts are currently in the mix – except maybe for Ensemble nominations with the cast of “Little Women”. The competition for Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Miniseries or Television Film has become stiffer over the last six months, most notably with the addition of Helena Bonham Carter for “The Crown”, Patricia Arquette for “The Act” – for which she nabbed the Primetime Emmy in September, and either one of the incredible cast of “Unbelievable” – Toni Collette, Merritt Wever or Kaitlin Dever. However, a nomination for Meryl should be a sure-thing by the Golden Globes. The Screen Actors Guild Awards will be harder to crack, since they do not have a supporting category for television – the supporting players mingle with the lead players in the “Female Actor in a TV Movie or Limited Series” category. The SAG nominations will be announced December 11. For now, fingers crossed for Monday’s Golden Globe nominations.

Nov 25
2019

The initial batch of all very positive reviews are in for Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women”. The adaptation had a 96 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes as of Monday morning. The Hollywood Reporter‘s David Rooney wrote that the film is “gratifying.” He added that Gerwig brings “freshness, vitality and emotional nuance to source material” that has been adapted multiple times. “Gerwig skillfully navigates the line between respecting the story’s old-fashioned bones while illuminating the modernity of its proto-feminist perspective, only occasionally leaning into speechy advocacy of a woman’s right to self-actualization beyond marriage,” Rooney wrote. He added that the cast “may be slightly bound by their canonical character types, but there’s lovely ensemble work here.” After praising the individual performances, specifically Ronan and Pugh, Rooney added that the film is “pleasingly paced.” He concluded, “Gerwig has taken a treasured perennial of popular American literature and reshaped it for a new generation, which should give the captivating film a long shelf life.”

Kate Erbland of IndieWire also gave Little Women a positive review. The critic noted that while Gerwig “modernized the book’s timeless story in unexpected ways,” it’s clear the director has “affection for the original, and keenly aware of how the concerns of Alcott and the March sisters (loosely based on the author’s own family) have never quite abated, no matter the time.” Erbland wrote that Ronan’s performance was “vibrant,” while Pugh’s interpretation of Amy “has more dimension than we’ve seen in previous cinematic adaptations of Alcott’s book.” She added that Little Women has its flaws, including when Watson speaks with an American accent and that “a handful of characters aren’t given nearly as much dimension as the sisters.” Erbland concluded,”Gerwig’s Little Women offers its own delightful storybook polish, in its own unique terms, and what a comfort that is.”

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Nov 16
2019

Alan J. Pakula, who died in 1998 at the age of 70 in an auto accident, was a most unusual filmmaker. Though his peers, including Stanley Kubrick, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, Roman Polanski, George Lucas and William Friedkin, were as well-known as the stars of their films, Pakula stayed out of the limelight and let his films speak for themselves. And what films – some of the most memorable titles of the last half century. The AFI Fest in Hollywood is paying tribute to Pakula with free screenings of “Sterile Cuckoo,” “Klute” and “Sophie’s Choice” and a free screening Sunday evening of Matthew Miele’s thoughtful new documentary, “Alan Pakula: Going for Truth.” That film features insightful and often emotional interviews with Robert Redford, Harrison Ford, Meryl Streep, Jane Fonda and Dustin Hoffman, co-workers and family and numerous clips. Streep, Hoffman and Ford recently talked to The Los Angeles Times about what made Pakula such a powerful filmmaker and person. The quotes have been edited for clarity and brevity. You can watch the trailer for “Alan Pakula: Going for Truth” on Youtube. Many thanks to Glenn for the heads-up.

I think he really laid a map of integrity for artists, and that, more than anything, is his legacy for me. He was such a moral filmmaker. It’s like an old-fashioned idea, but he was. He was a moral man and he had a backbone. He loved women and respected them. So I mean it was that thing where you feel listened to instead of tolerated. It’s a really a great, great quality. All the best male directors have it. All the best female directors have it naturally.

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Nov 06
2019

On Monday, Meryl Streep, Greta Gerwig, Florence Pugh and Laura Dern, alongside her mother Diane Ladd, attended a screening for “Little Women” in Los Angeles. During a luncheon on Saturday, Gerwig talked about working with Streep on the film. In the director’s upcoming film, Amy March (Florence Pugh) delivers a powerful monologue to explain to Theodore “Laurie” Laurence (Timothee Chalamet) how she is hindered by a woman’s place in society. She tells him that when she marries, her husband would own any money she has and he would own her children. Gerwig told the crowd at the Teen Vogue Summit in Los Angeles that she wants to give credit where credit is due, confessing that she took the dialogue “basically verbatim” from a conversation with Streep. “When I started working on this project, Meryl Streep did just tell me that she was going to be in it. Because she loves the book and she told me … ‘I’ll be Aunt March.’ She said, ‘Write me some good lines.’ I was like, ‘I will,’” Gerwig said. “We had a lunch and she said, ‘This is what you have to communicate to the audience about the position of women, that they don’t even own their own children. It’s not just that they couldn’t vote, it’s not just that they didn’t have jobs. They didn’t own anything. If you wanted to leave a marriage, you could leave but you would leave with nothing, not even your kids. So it is the decision.’ So I basically verbatim took that and gave that to Florence.”


Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Public Appearances – 2019 – “Little Women” Screening (Los Angeles)

Nov 04
2019

Backstage has a very interesting interview with Meryl Streep’s stunt-coordinator from “The Laundromat”. Stunt coordinators have one of the most high-pressure jobs in the biz: keeping actors and everybody else on set safe. So imagine the pressure, then, when one of those actors happens to be Meryl Streep. Charlie Croughwell can attest, however, the stunt coordination veteran kept his cool working with Streep on “The Laundromat.” The Stephen Soderbergh feature, now streaming on Netflix, features one of Streep’s most involved stunts to date wherein a boat capsizes. Croughwell, along with his daughter who happens to be Streep’s stunt double, greeted the feat with aplomb—and he tells Backstage all about it, from pre-production meetings with Miss Meryl, to how he kept one of the greatest living actors out of harm’s way so she could deliver her best performance. The full interview can be read over at Backstage with many thanks to Glenn for the heads-up!

Anytime we have someone interacting with a body of water, we need to assess their comfort level. I let production know that I needed to get Meryl’s take on her comfort with water scenes and that we would need to get her in the tank at [a dive facility]. I needed to see how comfortable she is not only swimming but breathing from an air source. I had two dive masters as well as her stunt double and two water safety people on the day. We laid out all of the dive equipment we could have possibly needed: a wetsuit for Meryl, towels, showers. Her assistant arrived a bit before her, checked over the plan and we waited. Only a few minutes went by and up pulled Meryl. We went out to greet her. Once out of the car I began explaining to her the process we had planned and that she would be in different clothing on the day. The pro she is, she said, “These are the clothes I’ll be wearing and I’m very comfortable with what I need to do.” With that, we went into the tank area, she jumped in, we all jumped in and within 30 minutes we were done and she was on her way.

Oct 28
2019

Greta Gerwig’s highly anticipated directorial follow-up to Lady Bird reunites the filmmaker with Ronan and fellow Lady Bird co-star Timothée Chalamet to tell one of literature’s most beloved stories. Meryl Streep represented the film yesterday at a New York screening accompanied by her friends, playwright Tracy Letts and author of “One True Thing”, Anna Quindlen. Here’s what the critics are saying so far about Greta Gerwig’s Little Women, as compiled by Looper: Entertainment Weekly columnist David Canfield tweeted that Little Women was one of his “very favorite movies of the year,” furter noting, “Greta Gerwig delivers a both passionately faithful and gorgeously original take” and going on to praise several of the film’s leading performances.Kara Warner from PEOPLE Magazine wrote, “Greta Gerwig’s @LittleWomen is wonderful. A loving, meticulously-crafted adaptation that exceeded my expectations. Heartfelt, moving and a terrific showcase for its extremely talented cast and beloved source material.” New York Magazine’s Kyle Buchanan enjoyed the film, but felt there were some caveats. In a Twitter thread, he wrote, “Greta Gerwig takes the straightforward story of Little Women and boldly scrambles it, starting two-thirds of the way through and retelling most of what you remember via flashbacks and cross-cutting. Call it Louisa May Alcott meets 21 Grams[…] At best, it’s a fresh approach that makes you rethink familiar material. But it can also make simple plot and character developments a bit harder to locate.” He also singled out the performances, particularly Pugh’s: For my money, the MVP in Little Women is Florence Pugh. Hot off of Midsomar, Pugh is having a great year, and she’s hilarious and winning as Amy, the character best served by Gerwig’s structural gambits.”

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Oct 24
2019

Meryl Streep joined her “Little Women” colleagues Florence Pugh, Greta Gerwig, Laura Dern, Saoirse Ronan, and Timothee Chalamet during a special screening and panel event held at DGA in Los Angeles on Wednesday night. Streep plays Aunt March in the upcoming flick, opposite Saoirse Ronan, Laura Dern, Florence Pugh, and Timothee Chalamet, who were all at the event along with writer/director Greta Gerwig. During the panel event, the cast opened up about how they all got into character and Meryl talked about how she became the penny-pinching Aunt March. “She [Greta Gerwig] let me do what I wanted,” she said. “Aunt March is all about the money. It’s how the world measures value. She is the reality check on all the airy-fairy, highfalutin, idealistic people who populate her family, and that she basically underwrites.” Saoirse even revealed that one day, Meryl ate fast food to get into character. “I was trying to save money,” Meryl quipped. Little Women is set to open on Christmas Day. Pictures from the screening have been added to the photo gallery.


Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Public Appearances – 2019 – “Little Women” DGA screening