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Kevin James Justifies Erinn Hayes’ Character’s Death on ‘Kevin Can Wait’: ‘We Were Running Out of Ideas’
Kevin James spoke earlier this week about the reasons why Erinn Hayes’ character on “Kevin Can Wait,” wife Donna Gable, was written out of the CBS sitcom at the beginning of this season. What happened to Donna in the actual story, however, will apparently remain a mystery indefinitely.
According to James, speaking to the New York Daily News, the thought process behind Donna’s departure was to bring a new direction to the show, one that would allow for it to run for more seasons and be “lengthier.”
“The plot of the show didn’t have enough drive. If we got through a second season, I wouldn’t see us getting through a third one,” James said before he admitted they “were literally running out of ideas.”
James revealed that the original idea for his character was to be portrayed as a single father, but the producers of the show and himself later made the decision to add a wife character.
In the Season 2 premiere, we jump forward a year in the lives of the Gables, and Donna is only brought up after her family receives a letter from her gym saying that “they miss her,” to which James says “so do I” before cracking a joke about kung fu.
“Now, I have to deal with my daughter in a different way, and she’s gonna go to college, or one’s getting married, or the holidays. And it deals with things in a different, weightier way,” explained James.
James also mentioned to the Daily News that the show’s tone is lighthearted and that he was unsure if the show will explore her death any further. In June, CBS president Kelly Kahl said, “it will be treated with dignity and respect, as something that will have taken place in the past.”
“Kevin Can Wait” Season 2 airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.
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The Criterion Collection Announces January 2018 Titles, Including ‘The Breakfast Club’ and ‘I, Daniel Blake’
A brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess, and a criminal are all joining the Criterion Collection in 2018. “The Breakfast Club” is getting the Criterion treatment next January, as are a new edition of “Young Mr. Lincoln,” “I, Daniel Blake,” “Westfront 1918,” “Kameradschaft,” and four films by Claude Autant-Lara.
More information — and, as always, cover art — below.
“The Breakfast Club”
“What happens when you put five strangers in Saturday detention? Badass posturing, gleeful misbehavior, and a potent dose of angst. With this exuberant film, writer-director John Hughes established himself as the bard of American youth, vividly and empathetically capturing how teenagers hang out, act up, and goof off. ‘The Breakfast Club’ brings together an assortment of adolescent archetypes — the uptight prom queen (Molly Ringwald), the stoic jock (Emilio Estevez), the foul-mouthed rebel (Judd Nelson), the virginal bookworm (Anthony Michael Hall), and the kooky recluse (Ally Sheedy) — and watches them shed their personae and emerge into unlikely friendships. With its highly quotable dialogue and star-making performances, this film is an era-defining pop-culture phenomenon, a disarmingly candid exploration of the trials of adolescence whose influence now spans generations.”
“Young Mr. Lincoln”
“Few American historical figures are as revered as Abraham Lincoln, and few director-star collaborations embody classic Hollywood cinema as beautifully as the one between John Ford and Henry Fonda. This film, their first together, was Ford’s equally poetic and significant follow-up to the groundbreaking western Stagecoach, and in it, Fonda gives one of the finest performances of his career, as the young president-to-be as a novice lawyer, struggling with an incendiary murder case. Photographed in gorgeous black and white by Ford’s frequent collaborator Bert Glennon, ‘Young Mr. Lincoln’ is a compassionate and assured work and an indelible piece of Americana.”
“I, Daniel Blake”
“An urgent response to the political realities of contemporary Britain, this bracing drama from celebrated filmmaker Ken Loach takes a hard look at bureaucratic injustice and ineptitude through the eyes of an unassuming working-class hero. After a heart attack leaves him unable to hold a job, the widowed carpenter Daniel Blake (Dave Johns) begins a long, lonely journey through the Kafka-esque labyrinth of the local welfare state. Along the way, he strikes up a friendship with a single mother (Hayley Squires) and her two children, at the mercy of the same system after being evicted from their home. Imbued with gentle humor and quiet rage and conceived for maximum real-world impact, the Palme d’Or-winning ‘I, Daniel Blake’ is a testament to Loach’s tireless commitment to a cinema of social engagement.”
Eclipse Series 45: Claude Autant-Lara — Four Romantic Escapes from Occupied France
“Too often overlooked after his work was spurned by the New Wave iconoclasts as being part of the “tradition of quality,” Claude Autant-Lara was one of France’s leading directors of the 1940s and ’50s. He began as a set and costume designer and went on to direct French-language versions of comedies in Hollywood, but it was back in his home country that Autant-Lara came into his own as a filmmaker. He found his sophisticated and slyly subversive voice with these four romances, produced during the dark days of the German occupation. Sumptuously appointed even while being critical of class hierarchy, these films – all made with the same corps of collaborators, including the charmingly impetuous star Odette Joyeux – endure as a testament to the quick wit and exquisite visual sense of the director whose name they established.”
“G. W. Pabst brought the war movie into a new era with his first sound film, a mercilessly realistic depiction of the nightmare that scarred a generation, in the director’s native Germany and beyond. Digging into the trenches with four infantrymen stationed in France in the final months of World War I, Pabst illustrates the harrowing ordeals of battle with unprecedented naturalism, as the men are worn away in body and spirit by firefights, shelling, and the disillusion that greets them on the home front. Long unavailable, the newly restored ‘Westfront 1918’ is a visceral, sobering antiwar statement that is as urgent today as when it was made.”
“When a coal mine collapses on the frontier between Germany and France, trapping a team of French miners inside, workers on both sides of the border spring into action, putting aside national prejudices and wartime grudges to launch a dangerous rescue operation. Director G. W. Pabst brings a claustrophobic realism to this ticking-clock scenario, using realistic sets and sound design to create the maze of soot-choked shafts where the miners struggle for survival. A gripping disaster film and a stirring plea for international cooperation, ‘Kameradschaft’ cemented Pabst’s status as one of the most morally engaged and formally dexterous filmmakers of his time.”
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Moya Bailey, P. Gabrielle Foreman, Jessica Marie Johnson, Liz Losh, Marisa Parham, and more present at the OIEAHC/Equality Lab conference Race, Memory, and the Digital Humanities, October 26-28, 2017.
“We’ve got a map!!! Thank you Liz Losh and the team at the Equality Lab for this really amazing visualization of our DH work. Hope to see you all at Race, Memory and the Digital Humanities in a couple of weeks!”
Filed under: Jessica Marie Johnson, Liz Losh, Marisa Parham, P. Gabrielle Foreman Tagged: #adphd, african american, african diaspora, conference, digital, featured, featuring, history, memory, race, slavery, united states
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AFI FEST 2017 Announces Indie Additions, Including ‘Bodied,’ ‘Mr. Roosevelt,’ ‘Thoroughbreds,’ and Many More
The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced the films that will be featured in their New Auteurs and American Independents sections at the upcoming AFI FEST 2017 presented by Audi. Selections include a number of lauded features from around the festival circuit, including Cannes offerings like “I Am Not a Witch,” SXSW favorites like “Gemini” and “Mr. Roosevelt,” the Sundance breakout “Thoroughbreds,” and Joseph Kahn’s Toronto Midnight Madness favorite “Bodied,” among others.
Highlighting first- and second-time feature film directors, New Auteurs is designed as the festival’s platform for upcoming filmmakers from all over the world to showcase their new films. This year, the section includes 11 films, nine of which come from female directors. Similarly, AFI FEST’s American Independents section aims to represent the best of this year’s independent filmmaking. Pushing boundaries of form and content across narrative and documentary cinema, this section includes 11 films from both fresh new voices and filmmakers returning to AFI FEST.
“The New Auteurs and American Independents programming speaks to a singular mandate of AFI FEST: ensuring that emerging filmmakers from around the globe have a world-class venue to present their stories to an eager audience,” said Lane Kneedler, AFI FEST Director of Programming, in an official statement. “These films embody the promise of women and men who strive to lift our spirits through comedy, documentary, drama, science fiction and even a great American western.”
Check out the full list of additions below, with all synopses provided by AFI FEST.
“Ava” – After an adolescent girl discovers she will soon go blind, she confronts the problem in her own way in this disturbing, visually bold debut. DIR Léa Mysius. SCR Léa Mysius, Paul Guilhaume. CAST Noée Abita, Laure Calamy, Juan Cano. France
“Closeness (Tesnota)” – Controversial and beloved in equal measure, the film centers on a young woman eking out an existence in a remote region of Russia, and the choices she must face when her brother and his fiancée are kidnapped. DIR Kantemir Balagov. SCR Kantemir Balagov, Anton Yarush. CAST Atrem Cipin, Olga Dragunova, Veniamin Kac, Darya Zhovnar, Nazir Zhukov. Russia
“Hannah” – Charlotte Rampling gives another career-defining performance in this taut and layered film as a woman dealing with the fallout of an abhorrent crime committed by her husband. DIR Andrea Pallaoro. SCR Andrea Pallaoro, Orlando Tirado. CAST Charlotte Rampling, Andre Wilms. Italy, Belgium, France
“Have a Nice Day (Hao Ji Le)” – This morbid, hilarious animated noir cuts deep into the greed fueling the Chinese economic miracle. DIR/SCR Liu Jian. CAST Zhu Changlong, Cao Kai, Liu Jian, Yang Siming, Shi Haitao, Ma Xiaofeng, Xue Feng, Zheng Yi. China
“High Fantasy” – Four South African friends on a camping trip discover they’ve switched bodies in this found-footage sophomore feature that cathartically examines racial and gender issues. DIR Jenna Bass. SCR Jenna Bass, Qondiswa James, Nala Khumalo, Francesca Varrie Michel, Liza Scholtz, Loren Loubser. CAST Qondiswa James, Nala Khumalo, Francesca Varrie Michel, Liza Scholtz, Loren Loubser. South Africa
“I Am Not a Witch” – A nine-year-old girl ignites a rebellion in the witch camp where she’s been imprisoned, in this bold debut that beautifully mixes satire, superstition and ambiguity. DIR/SCR Rungano Nyoni. CAST Margaret Mulubwa, Henry B.J. Phiri, Nancy Mulilo. France, UK, Germany
“Milla” – The happy but impoverished life-on-the-fringes of a young French couple is captured with observational care and quiet grace in this striking new work. DIR/SCR Valérie Massadian. CAST Severine Jonckeere, Luc Chessel, Ethan Jonckeere. France
“Pendular” – This intense and unforgettable debut melds sculpture, dance and film in a tale brimming with sexual passion. DIR/SCR Júlia Murat, Matias Mariani. CAST Raquel Karro, Rodrigo Bolzan, Neto Machado, Marcio Vito, Felipe Rocha, Renato Linhares, Larissa Siqueira, Carlos Eduardo Santos, Valeria Barretta, Martina Revollo. Argentina, Brazil, France
“Summer 1993” – In this unforgettable and autobiographical debut, a six-year-old girl goes to live with her extended family in the Catalan countryside following her mother’s death from an AIDS-related illness. DIR/SCR Carla Simón. CAST Laia Artigas, Paula Robles, Bruna Cusí, David Verdaguer, Fermí Reixach. Spain
“What Would People Say (Hva Vil Folk Si)” – A Norwegian-Pakistani teenage girl must bear the consequences of her rebellious actions in this powerful sophomore feature. DIR/SCR Iram Haq. CAST Maria Mozhdah, Adil Hussain, Rohit Saraf, Ekavali Khanna, Ali Arfan, Sheeba Chaddha, Lalit Parimoo, Jannat Zubair Rahmani, Nokokure Dahl, Trine Wiggen, Maria Bock, Sara Khorami. Norway, Germany, Sweden
“Winter Brothers (Vinterbrodre)” – A loner in a snowy mining community is pushed to violent extremes in this hypnotic, beautiful debut out of Denmark. DIR/SCR Hlynur Pálmason. CAST Elliott Crosset Hove, Simon Sears, Victoria Carmen Sonne, Peter Plaugborg, Lars Mikkelsen. Denmark, Iceland
“The Ballad of Lefty Brown” – Bill Pullman gives a career-best performance in Jared Moshé’s cleverly scripted, thrilling love letter to the Western. DIR/SCR Jared Moshé. CAST Bill Pullman, Kathy Baker, Jim Caviezel, Tommy Flanagan, Peter Fonda. USA
“Bodied” – A meek white-boy rapper wants to spit fire, but does cultural appropriate outweigh his desire? DIR Joseph Kahn. SCR Alex Larsen. CAST Calum Worthy, Jackie Long, Charlamagne Tha God, Anthony Michael Hall, Rory Uphold, Dumbfoundead, Walter Perez, Shoniqua Shandai, Dizaster, Debra Wilson, Loaded Lux. USA
“California Dreams” – Beautiful and multilayered, Mike Ott’s latest work of docufiction centers on struggling individuals in Valencia, CA, and the profound chasm between their lives and dreams of stardom. DIR Mike Ott. CAST Cory Zacharia, Patrick Ilaguno, Carolan J. Pinto, Neil Harley, Kevin Gilger AKA K-Nine. USA
“El Mar la Mar” – A stunning new film from Harvard’s Sensory Ethnography Lab, EL MAR LA MAR dives into matters of life and death at the U.S.-Mexico border in the Sonoran Desert, where legions of immigrants are dying to cross. DIR/SCR Joshua Bonnetta & J.P. Sniadecki. USA
“The Endless” – Filmmaking duo Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead return with another fiercely original sci-fi horror film, this time set in a UFO death cult. DIR Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead. SCR Justin Benson. CAST Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead, Callie Hernandez, Tate Ellington. USA
“Fits and Starts” – Wyatt Cenac and Greta Lee star in this fantastic and funny debut centering on two married writers — one successful, the other not so much. DIR/SCR Laura Terruso. CAST Wyatt Cenac, Greta Lee, Maria Dizzia. USA
“Gemini” – Lola Kirke stars as a personal assistant who must figure out who killed her famous employer (Zoë Kravitz) in this neon-drenched neo-noir from director Aaron Katz. DIR/SCR Aaron Katz. CAST Lola Kirke, Zoë Kravitz, John Cho, Greta Lee. USA
“Life and Nothing More” – AFI FEST alum Antonio Méndez Esparza’s sophomore feature follows the day-to-day struggles of an African-American mother and her troubled son, who is getting ever closer to following in his imprisoned father’s footsteps. DIR/SCR Antonio Méndez Esparza. CAST Andrew Bleechington, Regina Williams, Robert Williams, Ry’Nesia Chambers. USA
“Mr. Roosevelt” – Triple threat Noël Wells directs, writes and stars in this funny tale of a struggling comedian returning to her hometown to mourn an old pet, and play third wheel to her ex and his new girlfriend. DIR/SCR Noël Wells. CAST Noël Wells, Nick Thune, Britt Lower, Daniella Pineda, Andre Hyland. USA
“Sollers Point” – This moving portrait of one young man’s frustrated attempts to rise above his obstacles after being released from prison is the latest film from indie director Matt Porterfield. DIR/SCR Matthew Porterfield. CAST McCaul Lombardi, Jim Belushi, Zazie Beetz, Everleigh Brenner. USA
“Thoroughbreds” – Taylor-Joy and Olivia Cooke star in this darkly comedic thriller that recalls films like HEAVENLY CREATURES and HEATHERS. DIR/SCR Cory Finley. CAST Olivia Cooke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Anton Yelchin, Paul Sparks, Francie Swift, Kaili Vernoff. USA
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