Tag: Zoe Saldana

Pete Chatmon, Kate Marks and Kevin Lau Selected for HBOAccess Directing Fellowship

Pete Chatmon
HBOAccess Directing Fellow Pete Chatmon (photo via shadowandact.com)

article via Tambay Obenson via shadowandact.com

HBO has selected the three emerging directors to participate in the 2016 HBOAccess Directing Fellowship. Now in its second year, the program provides one-on-one mentorship with an HBO creative executive, education about the craft and business of directing, and a $100k budget to shoot a short presentation for HBO with a professional crew. The winners will participate in the workshop in July, shoot their presentation in August, and finish up post-production by the end of September.

The three directors selected are:

— Readers of this blog will be familiar with Pete Chatmon, whose debut feature, “Premium,” starred Dorian Missick, Zoe Saldana, and Hill Harper and premiered on Showtime after a limited theatrical run. Chatmon also wrote, produced, and directed “761st,” a documentary on the first black tank battalion in WWII, narrated by Andre Braugher. Chatmon received the Tribeca Film Institute “All Access” Program’s Creative Promise Narrative Award for the heist screenplay “$FREE.99”, written in collaboration with Candice Sanchez McFarlane.

Through Double7 Images, his Digital Studio, he has directed content for ad agencies, Porsche, Proctor & Gamble, Lenovo, Universal Pictures, and other brands. Chatmon’s career began in 2001 with the Sundance selection of his NYU thesis film, “3D”, starring Kerry Washington. His current project, the short film “Black Card”, began traveling the international film festival circuit in Spring/Summer 2015 and premiered on HBO in February 2016.

Kate Marks was a Project Involve fellow at Film Independent where she received the Barbara Boyle Award. She began making films after working as a playwright, theatre director, and performer in New York City. Her award winning short films (Pearl Was Here, Homebody, 7 Day Gig, and Miracle Maker) continue to screen all over the world. Highlights include Slamdance, Edinburgh International Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, Mill Valley, and broadcasting on PBS. She is a graduate of CalArts (MFA) and Brown University (BA). Additionally Kate teaches filmmaking in public schools, prisons, senior centers, and parks. Her work with a wide range of students can be felt in her stories, which focus on the need to be witnessed.

Kevin Lau is a writer/director who is a recent fellow of the Sony Pictures Television Diverse Directors Program and CAPE New Writers Fellowship. A graduate of Columbia University’s MFA program, his thesis film, “Made in Chinatown”, swept the NBCUniversal Short Film Festival–winning Best Short, Best Writing, and Best Actor–and has gone on to screen in exhibitions at the New Americans Museum, Glass Curtain Gallery, and in classrooms at UCLA and Emerson College. Kevin is a proud native of Los Angeles and credits the culturally diverse city for shaping the stories he tells. Continue reading “Pete Chatmon, Kate Marks and Kevin Lau Selected for HBOAccess Directing Fellowship”

Idris Elba Joins Cast Of “Star Trek Beyond” and Charity Initiative Omaze.com (VIDEO)

In the video above, Idris Elba joins “Star Trek” cast members Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg, Anton Yelchin, and John Cho telling viewers to support the cast’s charity initiative at omaze.com for a chance to win a walk-on role in the next movie by entering with a donation of 10$ that will go to support one of nine global philanthropic organizations.

(Photo courtesy omaze.com)
(Photo courtesy omaze.com)

Elba pops up toward the end of the video and adds a little fun flavor with some unexpected dance moves.

There still isn’t any specific information about his role in the film, but it’s Idris Elba, so it should be good. Star Trek Beyond is set for release on July 8, 2016.

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)

 

 

Netflix Documentary on Singer and Social Activist Nina Simone Coming in 2015

Netflix is dipping its toe into original programming again with a timely documentary on provocative musical genius and social activist Nina Simone, aka the “High Priestess of Soul.” What Happened, Miss Simone? will tell the singer’s story in her own voice using over a hundred hours of previously unheard interviews. Produced in cooperation with Simone’s estate, it will also feature rare concert videos, diaries, letters and other private materials. It was directed by Oscar-nominated director Liz Garbus and will debut next year — possibly around the same time as an unauthorized Simone biopic starring Guardians of the Galaxy‘s Zoe Saldana.

Simone was a classically-trained musician who switched to soul, jazz and blues after being denied a prestigious scholarship, reportedly because she was black. During the 1960s, her music and lyrics became infused with a strong civil rights message and she spoke at demonstrations like the “Selma to Montgomery” marches, which eventually led to the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Describing her musical career, Garbus said that “for each of her millions of fans, Nina feels like a treasured secret.” Simone was also a controversial figure who advocated for violent revolution on behalf of African Americans, and Netflix said the film would take an “unflinching” look at her life.

The upcoming biopic joins other well-received titles from Netflix like the 3D-printing documentary Print the Legend and Academy Award-nominated The SquareWhat Happened, Miss Simone will arrive in all Netflix countries sometime next year.

Check out video of arguably her most famous protest song, “Mississippi Goddamn” below:

article by Steve Dent via engadget.com

Zoe Saldana to Star in NBC Miniseries “Rosemary’s Baby”

zoe saldanaAccording to Variety.com, Zoe Saldana has been hired to star in NBC’s four-hour miniseries remake of the classic 1968 horror film, Rosemary’s Baby. Saldana will play Rosemary, the iconic young wife and would-be mother who, with her husband, moves into a Paris apartment building that has a dark, storied past. After finally getting pregnant, she becomes increasingly suspicious that both her husband and their mysterious neighbors have ulterior motives about the future of her child.

NBC announced the Rosemary’s Baby miniseries in December, with Lionsgate TV attached to produce.  Joshua Maurer, Alix Witlin and David Stern are executive producing with Saldana, Cisely Saldana and Mariel Saldana.  “Zoe has proven that she is one of our most gifted actresses and we think she has the perfect combination of spirit and gravitas to take on the title role from Ira Levin’s infamous novel,” said Quinn Taylor, Executive Vice President, Movies, Miniseries and International Co-Productions, NBC Entertainment. “With Zoe leading the cast under the direction of Agnieszka Holland, this reimagined event mini-series is off to a great start.”

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson

Essence to Honor Oprah at ‘Black Women in Hollywood’ Luncheon

oprah (whiteshirt)

Essence is honoring some powerful black women who have done some extraordinary work in the film and television industry at the 6th annual Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon.  The prestigious event will take place at the Beverly Hills Hotel on February 21.  This year’s honorees include Oprah Winfrey, Alfre Woodard, Gabrielle Union, Mara Brock-Akil, Naomie Harris, and breakthrough performer, Quvenzhané Wallis.

“The ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon recognizes the ‘Power of our Presence’, by spotlighting the stellar accomplishments of African-American female performers and creators in film and television,” says Essence editor-in-chief, Constance C.R. White. ”More importantly, the annual luncheon serves as a source of support and inspiration for the incredibly talented community of Black women who are often overlooked in Hollywood.”

Over the years, others like Viola Davis, Zoe Saldana, Angela Bassett and Pam Grier have been honored for their phenomenal contributions.

article by Brittney M. Walker via eurweb.com