Thursday, June 30, 2011

Liev Supports a Friend ~ Again

WHAT: Imitation designer Tara Subkoff presents a self-directed short film for her Resort 2012 collection starring model Nicole Trufino and featuring cameos from Lissy Trullie, Becka Diamond and Ilirjana Alushaj among other ladies-about-town.

WHERE: The Jane Hotel, NYC

WHEN: Tuesday, June 28th

WHO: Tara Subkoff, Becka Diamond, Sunrise Coigney, Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, Sky Ferreira, Chrissy Miller, Waris Ahluwalia.

Watch the entire film over at

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Top Ten Tuesdays: It Ain't Gonna be Pretty

Chuck: "I knocked him down!"
Manager: "Yeah but look at him - now he's really pissed off."

As a silly fangirl, I hold on to hope for that role which brings in the big accolades. I'm talking Oscar Big. From Pacino's Taxi Driver to Redford's Sundance Kid, we've seen careers bourgeon from laudable to legendary with the chewiness of one meaty role. Well, in researching The Bayonne Bleeder it's clear that this is a story which merits being told often and well. And also that Liev is just the man to unfold it before us.

So, here are my Top Ten Reasons for looking forward to The Bleeder:

10. The Era -Wepner started boxing in the same era that Liev was born. There's something so intoxicating about being transcended back into the time we were born that I cannot see Liev being anything less than mesmerizing as he takes on the feeling of the times.

9.  The Early Years - Wepner was both a Marine and a security guard before jumping into the ring. Lots of testosterone infused scenes with Alpha Males exerting their power - and in uniform no less!

8.  The Dance - Isn't there something great about watching a film that focuses on a subject that is foreign to you? I always welcome the chance to gain a new understanding for someone else's passion. I'm not particularily fond of boxing, but if it's done well enough you almost walk out of the theatre with a new appreciation, don't you?

7. The Drive - Many people take on such a public challenge in order to simply make a name for themself and in those cases most have no intention of winning. Eddy the Eagle, anyone? But for Chuck this was nothing but serious. It was the first time Wepner had the chance to train as a pro, and the prize was $100k, well beyond anything he had ever seen before.

6. The Build Up - I believe we are genetically predisposed to love the underdog. The buzz created in the days leading up to this fight was palpable. This TIME article from 1975 captures the feeling.

5. The Tension - Chuck: "At the end of the 9th round they asked how many fingers they had up? I couldn't see. I was completely blind! My manager tapped me on the back three times and I said 'three'. So the referee said 'O.K. I guess you can see. I'll let you go for the 10th round'. But all I could see was shadows."

4. The Accent: What's better than listening to Liev do a textured, epic, exotic (for me!), accent? Hearing Liev say "Ya gotta go da distance.." in that same heavy accent. Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

3. The Greatest: Just as an aside, how many times do we get to see a depiction of someone flying like a butterfly and stinging like a bee?

2. The Marriage - Sounds like these two are a force to be reconed with. An excerpt from Chuck's website: Wepner tells real stories and gives hilarious anecdotes you wouldn't believe! He's got an infectious sense of humor, "The day of the Ali fight I bought my wife a powder-blue negligee and told her ' wear this tonight cause you'll be sleepin' with 'da heavyweight champion of the world.' That night after the bloody fight his wife humorously busted balls, 'Do I go to his room, or will he be commin'' to mine now?!"

1.  The Costumes - There's a reason almost no films are set in the Tundra: snow suits are full coverage.  Need I say more?

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Looking for a Funny Bone(r)

“Comedy is the art of making people laugh

without making them puke”

Steve Martin

It's been awhile since I've shared any of my banal musings and to those of you feeling my absence I THANK YOU for your kind messages and support. I surely do feel myself getting back into the swing of this place again.

It all started on Saturday when I tucked into what must be the most under-touted Judd Apatow project ever. It's called Funny People and if you're as facile as I apparantly am, you're expecting a bromance and nothing more. The Title, Cast, One-sheet and Director would all lead you to believe you're getting another fart joke infested stream of vomit and titties set to a highly foot tappable soundtrack. And there is all that.

Okay, yes, that was all I was looking for on Saturday. I'm pregnant and absolutely thrilled so the chuckles come easily these days. All I can do is smile and laugh right now.

Joy ~ Joy ~ Joy

There's something so great about being surprised, nay, shocked when someone gently shoves you off the beaten path. I was not expecting the tenderness and humanity this film delivered - or the thought provoking conversations it has subsequently produced in my home. 

I won't go into the plot or characters in depth because I want to encourage you see it for yourself. I will say that I thought it allowed both Adam Sandler and Seth Rogen to stretch their dramatic legs and that is always great to see. The film is over 2.5 hours long - which was a surprise. Something less quality using that amount of reel would have come off highly self indulgent on the part of Apatow. Instead, it left you feeling like you invested time and were really a part of what was going on.

The reverb of this experience was that I've since been thinking about Liev's opportunities to show his own comedic talents.   And what it made me realize was that Liev's gift so far has been in the earnestness of what he brings to his characters. We love them because in the middle of a crazy situation they're doing their very best. Whether it's Vilma packing heat in a sundress or Stuart making speeches about colourblind dogs, it works. We buy into the ridiculousness of the situation - and that's because because he believed in it first.

You know that Pfffffftttttt noise of dissaproval people make, usually followed by intense eye-rolling? Never done that in a Liev film. Not once. Yes, films like His & Hers or The Ten or even Salt might not have been for everyone but they all kept me more or less in the moment. Does that make me a Liev fan - or just a true Film Buff? Is there a difference? Does it matter?

But back to Funny People, Adam Sandler exceeded expectations. I could not help but think, though, that I would have LOVED to see Liev in the role. A man and a life threatening diagnosis with only his jaded humour to get him through. Raw and real.

I read in an article recently (which I will not post here since some could consider the source Pap and I apologize for that) that Liev and Naomi are "Taking the Summer off." All I can say is I too would find it difficult to leave those beautiful boys and go to work every day. I hope a good rest is followed by lots of wonderful new projects and opportunities. And some really great comedy. This I need to see.

Thanks again, guys. It's great to be back. xo

Friday, June 24, 2011

Favourite Photo Fridays - He's a Classic

Liev looks so dashing in stripes, don't you think? Here's an image of His Hotness at the screening of Babel in NYC in 2006. I'm actually glad a wasn't there - it was an important and relevant film to see.
I would have missed the entire thing if Liev had shown up wearing this!

More snaps of this event in our Gallery.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Doing His Part for the Arts Once Again

Check out Sweetface...


Buzzing on Broadway

To launch his sophomore novel, My Life, the Theater, and Other Tragedies (Egmont USA, May), author Allen Zadoff is holding a contest that asks readers to submit creative photos of themselves with the book in theatrical locations (the novel focuses on a high school’s, well, drama-filled production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream). Zadoff will be posting the photos on his Web site and several Broadway luminaries have already gotten in on the act: Tony nominee Bobby Cannavale, currently starring in The Motherf**ker with the Hat, is seen here with the book, and other participating stars include Frances McDormand, Liev Schreiber, and American Idol’s Haley Reinhart. The contest runs through July 25; the winner who submits the “most creative, distinctive, or impressive” photo wins a Skype chat with Zadoff for his or her school, class, or theater group.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

NY Times: A Thespian with a Side Gig

Great new article from the Times today. Liev is as humble and self depracating as ever.

Link Here or:

By Jason Gay

"Can we have breakfast menus?" Liev Schreiber asked. It was a Monday morning not long ago in New York City, and Schreiber, the 43-year-old actor, was trying—politely, unsuccessfully—to summon the attention of the wait staff at a stylish, subterranean breakfast spot. He looked toward the kitchen and asked again, and nobody turned.

"See?" Schreiber said dryly. "Very few people recognize my voice."

Had Schreiber been rhapsodizing about the fighting brilliance of Manny Pacquiao, the hard-scrabble Indiana childhood of Larry Bird, or the foul-mouthed charms of Rex Ryan, someone may have recognized his voice. (Then again, this was blasé downtown Manhattan—they might not have turned around if Karl Lagerfeld began playing "Up on Cripple Creek" on a platinum harp.)
But if you've been anywhere close to an HBO Sports series or documentary over the past decade and a half, you've heard Schreiber talk. He's a Tony-winning Broadway star; he has appeared in movies like "X-Men: Origins"; but as a narrator, he has quietly become the Mariano Rivera of the pay network's sports coverage—the steady, reliable closer. "He's as important as any element of a documentary," said Ross Greenburg, the president of HBO Sports.

Schreiber's voice isn't immediately identifiable or iconic—it's not Al Pacino's "Hoo-ah" or Morgan Freeman's low rumble. The voice sounds older than its owner, but it isn't showy; it's smart, but not tweedy. It's a soother-light caramel, absent of rasp or scratch.

"It's not entirely me," Schreiber said. "There's an effort to enunciate more than usual, to phrase toward clarity. It's not naturalism. It's a character, in a sense."

At first it seems like an incongruous pairing—the urbane thespian's thespian who seldom glances at a box score and a network with a deep sports obsession. (HBO's latest sports documentary, "McEnroe/Borg: Fire & Ice," about the great tennis rivalry, premieres Saturday night.) But the broad-shouldered Schreiber possesses athletic DNA, having played football as a student in Brooklyn ("I loved hitting people") until an ankle injury curtailed his career. As a kid, he snuck into Madison Square Garden to see games, and he recalls being enraptured by the folkloric NFL Films narrated by the stentorian-voiced John Facenda.

"I was really into Greek mythology in junior high school, and [NFL Films] was like Greek mythology—superheroes, slow motion, steam coming off giant men," Schreiber said. "The way John Facenda talked about it, it was like 'The Odyssey.' "
Schreiber was hired to do his first HBO documentary in 1995, about the old American Football League. Greenburg had been impressed by Schreiber's narration on a PBS rock 'n' roll series and wanted the same voice for sports. At the time, Schreiber was in his 20s, and his film career was just starting. "This stud comes walking down the hall," Greenburg said. "I'm like, 'You're Liev Schreiber?' I was sure it was going to be some 65-year-old guy with a cane."

Schreiber's acting career would blossom, but he maintained his link to HBO. In the years since he has managed to record narration from far-flung filming locations including Europe, Morocco and Thailand, where he was staying with his two children and his partner, the actress Naomi Watts. "I was doing hockey voice-overs in the middle of Phuket—totally surreal," he said.

By now, Schreiber is trusted to arrive in the final stages of production and verbally stitch it together. (He used to smoke in the recording booth but has quit cigarettes altogether.) On occasion, he might suggest a small alteration—eliminating a word, a slight change of phrase or pace. "He just reads it right," said HBO writer Aaron Cohen. "And if he doesn't, he does it better than you imagined."

Schreiber seems amused by his side journey into sports. Putting voice to film is not an extrovert's business—hardly anyone finishes watching a documentary and wants to spend a half-hour discussing the narrator. But for an actor who has experienced the velvet side of celebrity (courtside at the Knicks between Anna Wintour and Rex Ryan), it's a happy sliver of (relative) anonymity.

Even if the job sometimes makes a (relatively) young man feel old, like on a recent HBO production about Jerry Tarkanian and the UNLV Runnin' Rebels of the early '90s.

"It's awful," Schreiber said, sighing. "UNLV! That's like recent history to me."

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Favourite Photo Fridays - A Ship in the Night?

I wonder what Liev thought of this intense, thought provoking film or if he read the book. He attended the premiere of the Shipping News in NYC back in December of 2011.

Looked YUMMY doing it too!

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