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"Los Angeles Times" film critic Turan presents an irresistible history of the New York Shakespeare Festival and the Public Theater--two institutions that under the inspired leadership of Papp have been a premier source of revolutionary and enduring American theater.
Cleopatra faced countless problems during its filming and production: passionate casting disputes, broken contracts, a costly re-location from London to Rome, an emergency tracheotomy for its star, Elizabeth Taylor, scandal-ridden gossip surrounding relationships on set, and a budget of $2 million that ballooned to final costs of $44 million. Legendary producer Walter Wanger recalls the drama that occurred both on and off the set, including the incredible obstacles he had to overcome and the exhilaration of producing a cinematic triumph. A revealing story about Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton's tempestuous romance and an insightful filmmaker's journal, now back in print for the 50th anniversary of Cleopatra's release, My Life with Cleopatra shares the true story of the relationship and film that enthralled the world.
It is in the nature of today's movie business that while Hollywood blockbusters invade every megaplex, smaller, quality films often don't get screen time. Fans of finer films have to count on catching up with them on video and DVD, but even the most hard-core devotees have trouble remembering what sounded good when a film was originally released. Never Coming to a Theater Near You will remedy that situation. This selection of renowned film critic Kenneth Turan's absorbing and illuminating reviews, now revised and updated to factor in the tests of time, point viewers toward the films they can't quite remember, but should not miss. Moviegoers know they can trust Turan's impeccable taste. His eclectic selection represents the kind of sophisticated, adult, and entertaining films intelligent viewers are hungry for. More importantly, Turan shows readers what makes these unusual films so great, revealing how talented filmmakers and actors have managed to create the wonderful highs we experience in front of the silver screen.
A journalistic account of all the superficial glitz that we associate with film festivals, along with an account of the serious business that goes on there, and of the politics behind the glamor. There have been books about individual festivals, but never anything as comprehensive as this.
Almost every day of the year a film festival takes place somewhere in the world--from sub-Saharan Africa to the Land of the Midnight Sun. Sundance to Sarajevo is a tour of the world's film festivals by an insider whose familiarity with the personalities, places, and culture surrounding the cinema makes him uniquely suited to his role. Kenneth Turan, film critic for the Los Angeles Times, writes about the most unusual as well as the most important film festivals, and the cities in which they occur, with an eye toward the larger picture. His lively narrative emphasizes the cultural, political, and sociological aspects of each event as well as the human stories that influence the various and telling ways the film world and the real world intersect. Of the festivals profiled in detail, Cannes and Sundance are obvious choices as the biggest, brashest, and most influential of the bunch. The others were selected for their ability to open a window onto a wider, more diverse world and cinema's place in it. Sometimes, as with Sarajevo and Havana, film is a vehicle for understanding the international political community's most vexing dilemmas. Sometimes, as with Burkina Faso's FESPACO and Pordenone's Giornate del Cinema Muto, it's a chance to examine the very nature of the cinematic experience. But always the stories in this book show us that film means more and touches deeper chords than anyone might have expected. No other book explores so many different festivals in such detail or provides a context beyond the merely cinematic.
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