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Tag Archives: Hollywood
by Legendary Lew
I don’t care if Hollywood rots.
We’ve already seen sexual harassment and abuse allegations pour out into the media and we’re supposed to be shocked–SHOCKED, I SAY–that all of these transgressions have occurred.
Please wake up.
The term “casting couch” was coined over 100 years ago and guess what? It still means the same today as it did back then.
Weinstein, Price, Spacey, Affleck, Woody Allen, Gibson, Singer…do you think we are anywhere near the end of the list?
Not even close. Why? Because this problem is systemic. Just as The Catholic Church adopted a method of hiding sexual predators away from outside interference, Hollywood has the system of career damage and legal liabilities to protect against accusations.
What’s frankly more amazing are the excuses I’m reading and hearing.
So far in recent days, there have been the following pathetic retorts to sexual harassment and abuse charges:
* “You’re damaging an entire industry!” (Barbara Walters to Corey Feldman on his pedophile accusations)
* He’s 93 years old and his hand slips down (G.H.W. Bush)
* I was drunk/am recovering substance abuser (multiple times)
* I’m coming to terms with my gayness
* It was many years ago
* Some of/all the women are liars
* They were in this industry and should have known what they were getting into
* She dressed inappropriately
You get the idea. I’m not even going to continue listing any more, because there are as many excuses as there are abusers.
Does this mean that everyone in the film industry is an abuser or an enabler? No.
What it does mean is that there are no effective systems in place keeping horrible people from entering positions of stature. Once those persons make money for the Hollywood studio system, they get protected. As long as everyone is fat and happy, as during the golden days of the The Weinstein Company, almost everybody shuts their traps–even those fighting against other forms of discrimination.
This scenario will happen again and again unless we, as consumers of movie product (because, honestly, that’s how the studios see us) take action.
Do you view WalMart, McDonalds, Amazon, Nestle, BP or other corporations with moral apprehension? Do you boycott them?
Do you view what’s happening right now in Hollywood with the same level of disgust?
If so, then it’s long past time to boycott them.
But Lew, does this mean I should stop watching Oscar-winning or Emmy-winning works from the likes of Woody Allen, Mel Gibson, Casey Affleck, Weinstein Studios, Kevin Spacey?
Yes. FUCKING YES.
Stop protecting these people because they’ve created “great art.” Music producer Phil Spector created some of the most amazing music I’ve ever heard. Does that mean I want him, a convicted killer, to get out of prison and produce another record?
Hell no! His days are done. There are other great producers out there who aren’t criminals. Give them a chance.
Same with Hollywood. Who knows how many great talents were chased out of that town, because they saw or experienced first hand the exploitation that goes on.
If you want that to change, YOU have to be the change. Tear it down.
by Legendary Lew
So Hollywood stars like Meryl Streep, Judi Dench and Kevin Smith are now weighing in with shock and dismay about the recent allegations that Harvey Weinstein sexually harassed women for decades and paid off their silence.
Give me the break of my fucking life.
This is Hollywood we’re talking about. It’s an industry for which the term “casting couch” was invented.
It’s an industry which is set in the very same city as the center of the universe for porn.
It’s an industry which fuels and refeeds from the parallel industries of rumor, via National Enquirer, TMZ, Entertainment Tonight, Inside Edition and other tabloid TV and print.
How in God’s name can you possibly say with a straight face that you heard nothing in twenty years while you are directly connected with Hollywood?
There’s already been aired allegations of this sort at least two years ago and even Ashley Judd admitted women were talking about this long before the explosive New York Times article came out.
Harvey Weinstein showed traits of being a massive jerk, but groomed his image with liberal causes. Couldn’t others put two and two together and figure out this guy is not for real about something?
Now, just as with Harry Knowles, Weinstein is hoping that his firing from the company he founded will only mean it’s a temporary thing. Hell, if Hollywood is ready to re-embrace such horrible human beings as Woody Allen and Mel Gibson why not him, right?
by Legendary Lew
Friend of The Underground Multiplex and contributor to Mediatrocities, Dominick Suzanne-Mayer comes up with an astute write-up of Warner Brothers’ decision to produce more DC Comics-based movies. His views parallel mine in discussion of what I’ve termed Imitation Movie Products.
You should head over to Consequence of Sound and give it a read. It’s yet another movie lover’s concern for how movies are being made and distributed to the detriment of those who can never have their films projected on the big screen.
by Legendary Lew
Ben Hicks, co-founder of Fandependent Films, joins me in the latest podcast to talk about his site, the state of independent films and whether it’s possible to have cottage industries of film.
Check out Fandependent Films, where you can watch a brand new movie every day and become a fan of your favorite ones. Becoming a fan supports the site and the filmmakers.
Listen to the podcast:
by Ty Pi
During the In Memoriam tribute at last night’s 88th Annual Academy Awards, Abe Vigoda (The Godfather, Barney Miller, Fish, and Good Burger) was notably absent. For many years, Hollywood believed he had already passed away. Since January 26th, 2016, the day Vigoda passed on, Hollywood now believes he is still alive. Oops!
Hey, nobody’s perfect…
by Legendary Lew
Oh, okay I’ll admit it. In the interests of disclosure, Scumbabies is a production of The Underground Multiplex.
However, the website hosting the feature currently (Fandependent Films) is run by Ben Hicks and Jerry Tran, two filmmakers who respect the hard work and artistry of other filmmakers who struggle with tiny budgets and few venues to display their works properly.
Their current Winter 2016 Film Festival is on with Scumbabies competing against a number of other films to vie for permanent collection status at Fandependent. Please head on over and become a fan of Scumbabies. Help us win an Audience Award. There are only 20 days from this writing to do so!
If the TPP is Enacted, Hollywood Takes a Giant Leap Towards Throwing You in Prison for File Sharing, Even for Noncommercial Uses
by Legendary Lew
But, hey, if you want to be a Hollywood whore, you do what your pimps want–and with the TPP, the Hollywood studio Macks demand two things: Dodd puts on the ho heels and anyone file sharing goes to jail.
The current language of the TPP, as leaked by Wikileaks (who would, btw, be in some major legal trouble through the same agreement) is so loose and ambiguous, you’d have to think twice about sampling music, creating award-nominated re-edits (recognized by Hollywood!) or even posting that cute video of your grandma dancing to “All About That Bass:”
She is pretty good.
Anyway, the language in the TPP portion released by Wikileaks allows for governments in the trade agreement to impose:
penalties that include sentences of imprisonment as well as monetary fines sufficiently high to provide a deterrent to future acts of infringement, consistently with the level of penalties applied for crimes of a corresponding gravity
So what’ya say we throw you in jail for 10 years and fine you $1 million? Not enough of “a deterrent?” How about a trillion?
The draconian language of this provision is, of course, its virtual guarantee that the enforcement is going to be virtually impossible without imprisoning a shitload of people, so I have a proposal of my own.
Hollywood, if you want this deal, I want to back you up by arresting and imprisoning every single exec and producer who’s stolen ideas. Let’s start clearing them out.
Michael Bay, we’ve got a jail cell for you. Kevin Tsujihara, head of Warner Brothers, one of your execs said piracy was not a big deal. You’re a collaborator, we can send you to prison also. Adam Sandler, there’s a wing in a penitentiary going to be named after you.
It’s time to give up the fantasy that Hollywood offers any clear and personal connection to you. I love movies, but I detest the current corporate system that creates blockbusters as “deals” and then involves itself in international politics that trample on individual rights.
It’s just one more reason why my movie choices are becoming more independent and local.
If you oppose the TPP, you should contact your representative and senator right now. A vote in Congress is imminent.
by Ty Pi ~ @-[->
Legendary Lew interviews filmmaker John Rangel (The Girls on Liberty Street) in the latest episode of “Mediatrocities.” Topics include the projection of stereotypes in Hollywood cinema, independent film, and Rangel’s upcoming film Remember Our Days. This film is currently seeking crowd-funding via Seed&Spark. Click on this link to visit the page and contribute to the project.
This episode is NSFW
by Legendary Lew
Action icon Jean Claude Van Damme continues to increase the stock value of his super-coolness. Not only did he put in a well-received acting performance in JCVD and blow up social media with his split-legged Volvo commercial, he now wants to be in your videos and movies. Seriously.
In what I think is a terrific and brilliant move by both Van Damme and Green Screen, the muscle-shirted action hero performs short bits before a green screen–free for you to use in your own media projects.
You can watch the 3-minute sequence below with J.C. thrusting samurai swords, firing machine guns and spouting off one-liners. Talk about a fantastic gift!
If you were anybody who was anybody in show business, chances are you landed a gig talking to Joe Franklin. Franklin died on Sat. Jan. 24 of prostate cancer at age 88.
Dubbed as “The Wizard of Was,” Franklin was on TV for forty-three years (1950-1993), long outlasting Paar, Carson, Leno, Letterman, Steve Allen. In fact, he fathered the modern day talk show format with his congenial manner and outshined most of them with his encyclopedic knowledge of old-time show business. He talked like (and dressed like) the best talent agent on Earth.
That knowledge allowed for amazing appearances on his show, not only for legends like Frank Sinatra, but for performers long forgotten or those who didn’t make many talk show appearances. Watching “The Joe Franklin Show” was like having the question, “Whatever happened to…?” answered instantly. People like Anita O’Day, Arthur Prysock, Jack Gilford, Steve Reeves, Tommy Sands, Sally Kirkland and Carol Lynley showed up and proved they were still alive.
This, of course, made for some great shots by fringe entertainers, such as Sir Monti Rock III:
Here’s Joe talking to The Ramones or as Joe called them The RAYmones. They died before he did:
And talking to horror master Dario Argento:
And finally a guest Franklin said was his favorite:
Joe, you are now among the legends you loved.