Every time I say “I’ll just throw in a news update because there’s nothing going on” I get inundated with awesome news. I think the news gods are being kind to me. In today’s installment, we’ll look at a new celebrity biopic; Buster Keaton and Cleopatra are coming to Blu-Ray; and some TCM stuff I forgot to mention. Also, I’ll throw in a Lake Update for March (a two-fer!).
We’ll start with another dive into upcoming Hollywood biopics. It’s been mentioned for a while that Nicole Kidman will be taking on the heady role of Grace Kelly, in the film Grace of Monaco. The plot focuses on the period of time in the early 60s when Monaco went through a period of political upheaval. I’m not sure exactly what went on, but the movie has released its first official photo of Kidman as Kelly (above), and a release date has been announced. I have to say, Kidman does “regal” very well; I’m just not sure if I see Grace Kelly. I’m also inclined to say Kidman’s best friend, fellow actress Naomi Watts, might have been a better choice (but Watts is playing Princess Diana, this year). You can’t really tell much outside of a photo of Kidman in a nice dress, so I’ll wait for video clips before passing judgement. Grace of Monaco hits theaters December 27th, 2013.
In the world of DVD releases, the first bit of news comes from Kino Classics who will be releasing Buster Keaton’s 1927 film, College. College came out right after Keaton’s classic, The General, and will be receiving the royal treatment for its first time on Blu-Ray and DVD. Both formats will come with full HD transfer as well as a musical score, audio commentary with film historian Rob Farr, a visual essay on the movie’s shooting locations, and the 1966 short The Scribe which is believed to be Keaton’s last filmed appearance. College hits DVD and Blu-Ray on March 5th, and can be purchased at the Kino-Lorber website.
Also, FOX is ramping up the promotion for the 50th anniversary of the magnificent 1963 version of Cleopatra. The latest news is that the DVD/Blu-Ray edition will be restored with never-before-seen footage. The 2-disc Blu-Ray will include a cultural history of Cleopatra, the Egyptian ruler; missing footage from the original 1963 film; commentary with Chris Mankewicz, Tom Mankiewicz, Martin Landau, and Jack Brodsky; and a wealth of other interesting features. I couldn’t be more excited for this. I have Cleopatra in a FOX box set, and would love to see it restored to its full opulence. Cleopatra will hit Blu-Ray and DVD on March 21st.
And finally, a bit of additional TCM tidbits I forgot to include when I made my TCM Top Twelve. Thanks to the fine folks at TCM for letting me know what I missed. Acclaimed, Oscar-winner Joel Grey will be discussing his favorite movies when he’s guest programmer on March 19th. A new season of The Essentials, with hosts Robert Osborne and Drew Barrymore, will be kicking off March 9th at 8pm with the film Grand Hotel. I believe I mentioned this during my TCM Top Twelve, but all this month you can see Star of the Month Greer Garson.
Nothing revelatory happening this month on the site. We will be finishing up the Leading Lady tournament in about three weeks. Running concurrently is the March Madness Leading Lady tournament over at All Good Things. I’ve volunteered to run the 1950s bracket, and you’ll be seeing that unveiled tomorrow. I’m gonna try to juggle things and make sure to get the 1950s bracket up, as well as an entry in Biopic Theater. You’ll also see the poll for the 2000s Leading Lady tournament on Monday. I hope this voting doesn’t create burnout, but thankfully my tourney is almost done, and Monty’s is simply one week. I do recommend bookmarking All Good Things this month. His Leading Lady tournament is far more comprehensive than mine, and without him I’d never have been inspired to do my own competition. Other than that, I do want to do a March Madness giveaway. I have quite a slew of books accumulated, and might delve into purchasing some other goodies for one or two big prize packs. Other than that, more movie reviews and a lot of fun coming your way!
A freelance film critic whose work fuels the Rotten Tomatoes meter. I've been published on The Hollywood Reporter, Remezcla, and The Daily Beast. I've been featured in the L.A. Times. I currently run two podcasts, Citizen Dame and Ticklish Business.