Tag Archives: hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis

James Cameron: You Can Thank George W. Bush for ‘Avatar’

Odd as it sounds, the most successful film of all time—Avatar—was inspired by George W. Bush (at least in part).

So says James Cameron, whose 3D sci-fi epic crossed the $2 billion worldwide mark in late January, besting the previous record holder, his own Titanic, which topped out at $1.8 billion.

Interviewed on Movie Geeks United, the powerhouse director discusses the theme of imperialism in Avatar.

CAPTION: "It's going to carry on I think for some time," James (above) tells us of industrial development destroying world cultures, "at least until we're all one homogenous society wearing blue jeans and eating McDonald's."

"It's going to carry on for some time," James (above) tells us of industrial development destroying world cultures, "at least until we're all one homogenous society wearing blue jeans and eating McDonald's."

“I was writing the film in early ’05—I had written the treatment way back earlier—and the story didn’t change much from the treatment. But I think some of the influences were the fact that we were at the peak of the fighting in the Iraq War,” he tells hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis.

“I was reacting to the fact that I was infuriated by us going into Iraq in the first place. There was plenty of literature and information around that there was no WMD before we went in, and the whole thing was a big pack of lies—which ultimately Continue reading

Robert Duvall: My ‘Godfather’ Character was Inspired by a Real-life Mob Gofer

Marlon Brando and Al Pacino weren’t the only Godfather actors steeped in Lee Strasberg‘s Method.

Robert Duvall—whose latest flick, Get Low, opened Friday to rave reviews—also drew inspiration for his character in the mob trilogy, Tom Hagen, from real life.

Robert:

Robert: Considered Carmine Galante lackey before tackling Corleone consigliere Tom Hagen.

Interviewed on Movie Geeks United!, the Oscar winner reveals that, while prepping for that role, a pal from New York City’s East Harlem told him about someone who worked for infamous Mafia boss Carmine “Cigar” Galante.

“He said there was a guy who was a high-paid gofer that followed [Carmine] around, and lit his cigarette, and pulled his chair out—a position that couldn’t be demeaned by others,” Robert tells hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis.

“Kind of like someone following around a president. That was a Continue reading

Director Joel Schumacher: Columbia Pictures Hated Emilio Estevez’s ‘St. Elmo’s Fire’ ‘Do

CAPTION: "Every filmmaker works their ass off on every film; the hits and the misses," Joel (above) tells us. "Sometimes you get lucky."

"Every filmmaker works their ass off on every film; the hits and the misses," Joel (above) tells us. "Sometimes you get lucky."

Emilio Estevez‘s coif in St. Elmo’s Fire looked fine to us.

Then again, we weren’t shelling out millions of bucks for the production.

Columbia Pictures, however—which was footing the bill— abhorred Martin Sheens son’s hair in the classic 1985 flick.

Interviewed on Movie Geeks United! as part of its Summer of ’85 series, director Joel Schumacher—who also made The Lost Boys, Batman Forever, The Client and Phone Booth—shares behind-the-scenes anecdotes from the feature that helped define the Brat Pack genre.

“The studio didn’t want Continue reading

Brett Ratner Clarifies ‘Corrupt’ Remarks in Roman Polanksi Case

Brett Ratner didn’t mean to diss California’s legal system—as he tells us himself.

On Sept. 29, the New York Post ran a story about Movie Geeks United‘s interview with the Rush Hour director.

That interview, which will be featured in The Geeks’ Oct. 4 Roman Polanski special, was conducted by host Jamey DuVall on Sept. 26, just hours before Roman’s arrest in Switzerland in the 31-year-old Samantha Geimer case.

Brett: No harm done.

Brett: No offense to La-La Land.

News from the interview included the fact that Brett announced he’s producing a sequel to Marina Zenovich‘s 2008 documentary, Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired, which examined the Geimer case in painstaking detail. Also that Roman, who (apart from archival footage) did not appear in the first project, had “agreed to participate” in the sequel.

Citing verbatim from a tape of his interview, The Post included the following quotes from Brett:

“The family has forgiven [Polanski]. The victim has forgiven him. The rest of the world has forgiven him… The L.A. judicial system is corrupt. It’s horrible.”

The Post also attempted to reach Brett, but reported that “Ratner did not respond to repeated requests for comment via his publicist.”

Then yesterday, Brett issued the following statement to BlogTalkRadio: Continue reading

‘Movie Geeks’ Spotlights Roman Polanski (with a Little Help from Wunderkind Brett Ratner)

Call it a “Rush” job—though one that’s been in the works for weeks.

On Sunday, Oct. 4, Movie Geeks United unspools the latest in its ever- popular “Director Series,” this one focusing on the films and career of acclaimed, yet controversial, director Roman Polanski.

CAPTION: "He has a great life, a great family," Brett (above) tells us of Roman. "This case has just been going on too long, and it's just ridiculous."

"He has a great life, a great family," Brett (above) tells us of Roman. "This case has just been going on too long, and it's just ridiculous."

During the two-hour special, hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis talk with director Brett Ratner (Rush Hour); Bobbie O’Steen, the wife of Roman’s late editor, Sam O’Steen (Chinatown, Rosemary’s Baby, Frantic); cinematographer William A. Fraker (Rosemary’s Baby); and critic Keith Uhlich.

Also featured will be highlights from the Geeks’ January 2008 interview with Marina Zenovich, director of the 2008 documentary, Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired.

Brett’s interview, as fate would have it, was taped just hours before Roman’s arrest on Saturday in Zurich Continue reading

Jeremy Piven: I’ll Be Stalking the Audience at My New Flick

If you’re planning to catch The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard this month, be afraid. Be very afraid.

Not because the Will Ferrell-Adam McKay production is a horror flick. To the contray, it’s an outrageous comedy about a used-car liquidator named Don Ready who’s hired by a failing auto dealership to turn their Independence Day sale into a profitable venture.

CAPTION: "With this movie, there's nothing better than watching the reaction from people," Jeremy (above) tell us of "The Goods."

"With this movie, there's nothing better than watching the reaction from people," Jeremy (above) tell us of "The Goods."

But its leading man seems to have taken his high-pressure, hard-sell character to heart.

Interviewed tonight at 10 p.m. ET on Movie Geeks United!Jeremy Piven says he’ll be taking his promotion for the flick – which opens Friday and co-stars James Brolin and Ving Rhames – directly to the people.

When host Jamey DuVall asks, “Are you going to go out this weekend and sneak into some theaters?” Jeremy snaps back with: Continue reading

John Huges Remembered by ‘Curly Sue’ Star, ‘Pretty in Pink’ Director and ‘Ferris Bueller’ Secretary

John Hughes may be gone, but he’ll never be forgotten – at least not as long as kids of every age roam the earth.

Shortly after the creative force such films as Sixteen Candles (1984), The Breakfast Club (1985) and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986) passed away unexpectedly last week at age 59, five of his collaborators gathered on Movie Geeks United! to share their recollections of the wunderkind with hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis:

CAPTION: "He liked people. He liked the heartland. That's where he got his ideas about what kind of movie people wanted to see," Howard tells us of John (above).

"He liked the heartland. That's where he got his ideas about what kind of movie people wanted to see," Howard tells us of the Michigan-born John (above).

Howard Deutch, who directed the John-penned Pretty in Pink (1987), Some Kind of Wonderful (1987), and The Great Outdoors(1988); Alisan Porter, who played the title role in Curly Sue (1991), which John wrote and directed; Edie McClurg, who played Grace the secretary in Ferris Bueller and a car-rental agent in Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987), both of which were written and directed by John; composer Ira Newborn, who scored Weird Science (1985), Ferris Bueller, Planes, Trains and Uncle Buck; and casting director Jackie Burch (Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club).

Following are highlights from the two-hour special. Continue reading

Francis Ford Coppola: ‘I Never Really Had Friends’ (but Now I’m Comfortable Being Alone)

It seems Michael Corleone’s solitude in The Godfather trilogy was no mere cinematic conceit.

Rather, it was a Freudian reflection of Francis Ford Coppola’s own childhood.

“I don’t mind it. I can occupy myself, entertain myself,” Francis (above) tells us of being alone.

“I don’t mind it. I can entertain myself,” Francis (above) tells us of his solitude.

Interviewed on BTR, the legendary director, who turned 70 in April – and whose new film, Tetro, tells the story of a man searching for his long- missing older brother – discusses how his unstable upbringing has impacted his oeuvre.

When asked if, like Al Pacino‘s character in The Godfather, he still embraces solitude, Francis tells hosts Movie Geeks United hosts Jamey DuVall and Jerry Dennis:

“We’re always prisoners of what our lives were like when we were kids. And for whatever reason, my father [the late Carmine Coppola] tended to sell our homes every six months.

“I think he was speculating in real estate on the side. He was a musician. But we were always moving to another place. I was going to a new school very often in the middle of a term. I went to 24 schools before I ever got to college.

“I went to Hofstra College in Long Island for four years. But before that, I went to six high schools.

CAPTION: Al Pacino as Don Corleone: A stand-in for Francis?

Don Corleone: A stand-in for Francis?

“It’s not totally understand- able why [my father] did that. But he did. So as a result, I never really had friends, because it takes a while to be the new kid at school – especially when your name is Francis.

“Then when I was about nine, I had polio and I was taken out of school for a year and a half. I was paralyzed. So as a child, I learned to be alone a lot and kind of entertain myself with reading.

“I was like a boy scientist, doing experiments and reading about the lives of great scientists; playing with electrical gadgets in the basement.

“I was sad, I was lonely and I wanted to have friends. And then later when I was in a position – by working in theater – to have friends, that was nice.

“But now as an older man, I realize I’m extremely comfortable with being alone.”

CAPTION: Unseen in “Apocalypse” scenes like this: Another fleet of choppers.

Unseen in “Apocalypse” scenes like this: Another fleet of choppers.

Francis also discusses how technology has impacted the film industry since the height of his career in the ‘70s.

When asked, “If today, you were going to make some- thing like Apocalypse Now, would you still shoot on location? Or would you give in more to doing a lot of it on the computer?” the director says:

“A lot of my thinking and my conviction that the cinema was going to be electronic came from sitting in the mud for hours upon hours waiting for the helicopters to arrive, then being frustrated be- cause the pilots of those helicopters were afraid of the explosions that were going on below.

“So they were usually 10 feet higher than they were supposed to be. In any shot of Apocalypse Now where you see a lot of heli- copters, you’ve got to realize that there were another 10 higher than you can see, because they were afraid to come down low.”

Tetro, which Francis wrote, directed and produced, opens June 26.

To hear Francis’ full interview, click here.