Talking Pictures: Stage Director Jay Manley (of the Mountain Play) on new movie version of ‘Beauty and the Beast’

As the Sunday afternoon sun reaches into the lobby of the movie theater, a stray shaft of light briefly illuminates a massive cardboard display propped up against the wall. It vividly depicts actress Emma Watson—who briefly glows in the sunlight—posed alongside an array of gesticulating clocks, candelabras, teapots and feather dusters, plus an enormous, forlornly…

Talking Pictures: The creators of ‘La La Land’ talk about movies, musicals and the politics of hopefulness

Last October, on opening night of the Mill Valley Film Festival (MVFF)—and months before La La Land was officially released in theaters—its writer-director, Damien Chazelle, was in Marin with his leading lady Emma Stone, and composer Justin Hurwitz. During a pre-screening press conference, Chazelle was asked about the Oscar potential for the film, a musical about artists…

Talking Pictures: Stars of ‘Loving’ talk about playing historical couple at heart of Supreme Court marriage decision

“Having so much archival material to draw on, that was such a blessing,” says Ruth Negga (Preacher, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), who plays Mildred Loving in Jeff Nichols’ beautifully crafted drama Loving, the story of Mildred and Richard Loving. It was their marriage, declared illegal in the state of Virginia in 1958, that led to the U.S. Supreme…

Talking Pictures: Richard Connema’s first-person account of the events in ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’

“I think it was one of the best roles Hugh Grant has ever had,” declares Richard Connema, praising Grant’s recent work in the new film Florence Foster Jenkins—directed by Stephen Frears (Dangerous Liaisons, High Fidelity, The Queen)—in which Meryl Streep also stars. “I think Grant deserves an Oscar for it. And that kid, the piano player, the actor…