Friday, 13 September 2013

Idris Elba: Nelson Mandela Biopic Reveals Both Sides [video] The Good and Not so Good

Idris Elba: Nelson Mandela Biopic Reveals Both Sides [video]- Las Vegas Guardian Express

The Good and Not so Good
Film Show Mandela's HumanityMandela’s upcoming Biopic shows that he was a real man with real issues. No, he wasn’t a saint; he was a man with a purpose.
This on-screen biopic, by Justin Chadwick, does not steer clear of Mandela’s faults as if he was a super hero. In fact, it does a great job showing the whole man. Mandela will be portrayed by actor Idris Elba and Naomie Harris has been cast as Winnie Mandela.
Elba said it’s important that people get both sides; the good and not so good. Mandela is seen early on as a womanizer who abused Evelyn, his first wife. Elba said he didn’t want to tear into his character like that but wanted to portray him in a way that was honest.
The biopic “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” premiered this weekend at the Toronto Film Festival. Elba had the opportunity to address the viewers on his role as Nelson Mandela.
This film is a two-and-a-half journey based on the former president of South Africa’s autobiography. The film takes the viewers on a journey from early in Mandela’s life as a young lawyer, his days as a political activist through his 27 years of incarceration. It hits all the important events that occurred before his 1994 democratic election.
Elba said that everyone has seen Mandela as a saint that they know and love but feels it’s important for the audience learns who he was prior to all of that in order to really comprehend who he was and is.
Mandela, at 95-years-old is still revered by many on an international level.
Other actors such as Sidney Poitier, Morgan Freeman, David Harewood and Danny Glover have all shared the role of Mandela on camera.
Chadwick felt Elba was the right one for his film. He knows that he looks nothing like the stately Mandela but felt Elba would be the brave choice and the right choice. Of course there were some obvious other choices but he wanted Elba. Reportedly, Elba didn’t disappoint, but managed to embody the magic of Mandela.
Even though the movie received mixed reviews based on content it seems all agree that Elba did the former president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, justice.
When viewers look at Mandela’s life and consider it to be his story; they’ll have the opportunity to see the good times, touch times and all in between. One thing about everyone’s life that’s constant is life has many cycles that people are forced to process daily.
Mandela was a game changer who realized that the pain of staying the same was more intense than the pain of invoking change. He wasn’t born with any super powers; he just made a choice to change lives. Anytime a person can see what needs to happen, they have also been empowered to invoke change.
Mandela learned early on that talking about change doesn’t produce change. People need an extreme and massive plan of action that shakes up their routine and leaves no other choice but change.
Nelson Mandela showed the world that one man’s courage is enough to make a difference. Most instrumental in ending institutionalized oppression in South Africa, he had a vision for a rainbow nation and started working.
Mandela’s family feels the interpretation does their relative justice. Mandela’s son, Kweku Mandela, said this team did a great job. He said this was a special and unique performance and the family hopes the world agrees.
Elba has already been favored to win an Oscar for this role in 2014. Due to Mandela’s illness, Elba never had the opportunity to meet him. So he had to do the film based on the script without Mandela’s personal influence. He said having the opportunity to take part in the life of a true legend meant a great deal to him. He said more important than anything this film is a platform to re-educate people on the great man Mandela is.
As viewers and fans embark this biopic film that depicts the life and times of Nelson Mandela, the former South African President, let them do so in the spirit it was written. The movie is set to open in theaters everyone on January 3, 2014.


By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
Op-Ed

Photos: "Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom" Press Conference - 2013 Toronto International Film Festival

"Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom" Press Conference - 2013 Toronto International Film Festival








(L-R) Director Justin Chadwick, actress Lindiwe Matshikiza, actor Riaad Moosa, actor Idris Elba, actress Naomie Harris, actress Terry Pheto, actor Deon Lotz, producer Anant Singh, producer David M. Thompson and screenwriter William Nicholson speak onstage at "Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom" Press Conference during the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival at TIFF Bell Lightbox on September 8, 2013 in Toronto, Canada.




Close ups of Naomie at Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom Premiere, Toronto

Naomie Harris steps out at the premiere of her new film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom held during the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival on Saturday evening















New Orleans Film Fest adds 'August: Osage County,' 'Nebraska,' Mandela biopic, to 2013 lineup



New Orleans Film Fest adds 'August: Osage County,' 'Nebraska,' Mandela biopic, others to 2013 lineup

mandela long walk to freedom idris elba naomie harris.jpg
Idris Elba and Naomie Harris star in the biopic 'Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.' The film has been announced as part of the lineup of the 2013 New Orleans Film Festival. (Keith Bernstein / The Weinstein Co.)

The New Orleans Film Festival has added some star power to its 2013 lineup. "12 Years a Slave" actresses Alfre Woodard and Lupita Nyong'o will join director Steve McQueen on the red carpet for the festival's opening-night presentation of McQueen's New Orleans-shot historical drama on Oct. 10, the New Orleans Film Society announced this afternoon (Sept. 10). In addition, acclaimed director and New Orleans native Godfrey Reggio will participate in a Q-and-A after a festival screening of his latest film, "Visitors."
All five have been drawing praise on the film festival circuit, but NOFF artistic director John Desplas singled out the participation of Reggio as a particular point of pride."Visitors," fresh off its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, will make its U.S. debut at the New Orleans Film Festival. It was among five new additions to the festival lineup announced today. The others are director John Wells' adaptation of Tracy Lett's Pulitzer-winning "August: Osage County"; director Alexander Payne's "Nebraska"; the Nelson Mandela biopic "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom"; and the Beat poet drama "Kill Your Darlings," starring Daniel Radcliffe.
"We're thrilled to have Godfrey Reggio's visionary new film in the festival, direct from its opening night in Toronto and long before its spring theatrical release," Desplas said.
"Visitors" and the other newly announced films join a fast-growing lineup. McQueen's "12 Years a Slave" and director Lily Keber's documentary "Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius of James Booker" have previously been announced as the fest's opening-night and closing-night films, respectively. In addition, the festival last week unveiled the films that will appear in competition in the narrative and documentary feature categories.
The 24th annual New Orleans Film Festival runs from Oct. 10-17. All-Access passes are available now through the festival's website. Single-screening tickets will go on sale one week before the festival.
Descriptions of the festival's newest additions follow, courtesy of the New Orleans Film Society, the organization group behind the annual festival. The full lineup, culled from a record 1,500-plus submissions, will be announced in coming weeks.
  • "Visitors," the U.S. premiere of acclaimed director Godfrey Reggio's newest film. Best known for his celebrated Qatsi trilogy (including "Koyaanisqatsi," "Powaqqatsi" and "Naqoyqatsi"), Reggio, a New Orleans native, shot some of the film in the New Orleans area. Similar to the Qatsi films, Visitors has no dialogue but features a rich score composed by his collaborator Philip Glass.
  • "Nebraska," the latest picture from Oscar-winning filmmaker Alexander Payne ("Sideways," "The Descendants"). Nominated for the Palme d'Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival (where Bruce Dern won the Best Actor Award), "Nebraska" is about a father (Dern) and son (Will Forte) who trek from Montana to Nebraska to claim prize money.
  • "August: Osage County," the film version of Tracy Letts' Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name. The film features an all-star cast, including Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Abigail Breslin, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Juliette Lewis.
  •  
    'Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom' movie trailerBiopic scheduled to play as part of 2013 New Orleans Film Festival
     "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom," based on the 1994 book "Long Walk to Freedom" from former South African president Nelson Mandela. Fresh from its premiere at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, "Mandela" stars Idris Elba, who is already creating awards buzz around his powerful performance. 
  • "Kill Your Darlings," about a little-known homicide involving Beat poet Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and William Burroughs. The film, directed by first-time feature director John Krokidas, stars Daniel Radcliffe as Ginsberg and also features Elizabeth Olsen, Michael C. Hall, Ben Foster, David Cross, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. The film premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and will be released theatrically following the New Orleans Film Festival.   

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Let's hear it for the black romcom queens - Guardian.co.uk


Let's hear it for the black romcom queens

Hollywood makes plenty of romantic comedies with black stars – not that you ever hear much about it
Naomie Harris in My Last Five Girlfriends.
Naomie Harris in My Last Five Girlfriends.
The romantic comedy season is almost at an end, as it makes way for summer's action blockbusters. But of the dozen or so romcoms that have been released this year in the UK, only one has had a black lead – Naomie Harris in Julian Kemp's My Last Five Girlfriends. (Two, if you count Disney's The Princess and The Frog.) US film site Gordon and the Whale has released a list of contenders for the title of new Romantic Comedy Queen – but there are no black actors. Where are Sanaa Lathan, Gabrielle Union and Thandie Newton?
  1. My Last Five Girlfriends
  2. Production year: 2008
  3. Country: UK
  4. Cert (UK): 12A
  5. Runtime: 87 mins
  6. Directors: Julian Kemp
  7. Cast: Brendan Patricks, Cecile Cassel, Edith Bukovics, Jane March, Kelly Adams, Naomie Harris
  8. More on this film
The studios' reluctance to cast black leads seems strange when you consider that the romcom with the biggest ever opening weekend was Will Smith's Hitch, in 2005. But Smith is an exception. He has acted in pretty much every genre and, crucially, has made money in all of them. What's notable is that Smith's Hitch co-star was not black but Cuban-American Eva Mendes. What is wrong with a black/black pairing? Do audiences not want to see love stories between black people?
"Black romcoms aren't being made at the rate they used to be," says Joanna Abeyie, entertainment editor at Pride magazine. "But many people went to see the all-black Cat On A Hot Tin Roof in the West End recently. Maybe it's something that's more accepted on stage."
And yet black love stories are the same as anyone else's. Black romcoms comply with all the rules of the genre: boy meets girl, obstacles pop up, "hilarious" misunderstandings ensue, an epiphany, a kiss, professions of love, end credits. Movies such as The Wood (1999), The Best Man (1999), Brown Sugar (2002) and Breakin' All The Rules (2004) are classics, but are known mostly to black audiences. (Brown Sugar took $27m in the US, compared to Hitch's $178m.)
Most of these films come from the same studios that release mainstream romcoms, yet many are never released in the UK. At best, they get short runs on few screens. I went to see The Wood with my sister in 1999. Our local cinema was packed; The Wood was on for one day only. And as a 17-year-old, it was good to see black actors showing us that sometimes young love can last.
The latest example is Just Wright, starring Queen Latifah and rapper Common, due out in the US in a fortnight. It would be nice not to have to wait for the DVD to see it here. After all, love stories transcend race.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Mandela movie gets ready for world stage

Long Walk To Freedom,nelson Mandela,idris elba
Johannesburg - The Nelson Mandela Foundation has lauded producer Anant Singh for his film Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, which is due to debut internationally soon.
"We wish Anant and the team all the best at the Toronto Film Festival and we are sure that the audience there will be captivated by the power of our founder's life story," foundation CEO Sello Hatang said in a statement on Thursday.
"We are confident that audiences... will be moved by the power of its narrative and the authenticity of its creation."
Singh was hand-picked by former president Mandela and entrusted as custodian of the film rights to the autobiography.
"I was humbled and honoured when Madiba chose me... We are privileged to have had the endorsement of Mr Mandela and the support of the foundation over these years," Singh said in the statement.
Hatang believed the film promoted Mandela's legacy and portrayed his "great insight, strengths, weaknesses, and values".
The film would be shown at the festival in Canada on 7 September.
Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom stars British actors Idris Elba and Naomie Harris as Nelson and Winnie Mandela releases in South African cinemas on 28 November.
- SAPA

Naomie Harris puts her sleek form on display in a purple and red dress as she promotes Mandela with Idris Elba in Toronto

Naomie Harris puts her sleek form on display in a purple and red dress as she promotes Mandela with Idris Elba in Toronto

In her new movie Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, she plays the wife behind the politician.
But as Naomie Harris promoted the movie at the Toronto Film Festival on Sunday there was no doubting she was the center of attention.
At the event Naomie was joined by her co-stars, including Idris Elba, who his garnering Oscar buzz for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela.
Scroll down for videos
Idris Elba admires his co-star Naomie Harris
Can't keep his eyes off her: Idris Elba admires his co-star Naomie Harris
And no wonder the pair looked so delighted.
For just the night before, the film prompted a standing ovation after its premiere screening at the Roy Thompson Hall.
On Sunday, Harris wore a silk satin, below-the-knee Burberry pencil skirt with wide black and red stripes paired with a black cotton tank top and Christian Louboutin Dahlia ankle boots.
Her long hair was in loose waves.
x
Harris shined in a Burberry dress and Christian Louboutin shoeties and the night before she rocked Marchesa at the film's premiere
Fashion week: Harris shined in a Burberry dress and Christian Louboutin shoeties and the night before she rocked Marchesa at the film's premiere
At the film's premiere on Saturday, the 37-year-old actress wore a black tulle cocktail dress by Marchesa with silver stilettos and Jessica McCormack jewelry and her hair pulled back.
Elba, who wore a sleek black suit and trainers to the premiere, sported a more casual look at the press conference, wearing a striped T-shirt and navy trousers.
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, directed by Justin Chadwick is adapted from Mandela's 1994 autobiography.
It chronicles the iconic leader's journey from childhood in a rural South African village, his days as an anti-apartheid revolutionary, which led to a 27-year prison sentence, and his inauguration as the first democratically elected president of the country. 
Idris Elba and Naomie Harris share a laugh during the press conference
Funny business: Co-stars Idris Elba and Naomie Harris share a laugh during the press conference
The film is produced by the Weinstein Co. and also stars Riaad Moosa, Terry Pheto, Lindiwe Matshikiza and Deon Lotz.
Other films have been made about Mandela, who is currently battling a lung infection, but Elba recently insisted that his version is by far the best.
The London-born Harris played Miss Moneypenny in the most recent Bond film Skyfall and has been cast in the same role for the next Bond film.
Naomie Harris and co-star Terry Pheto share a story after the press conference
Chat fest: Harris and co-star Terry Pheto share a story after the press conference
Elba, who was also born in London, rose to fame playing Stringer Bell in the acclaimed television series The Wire.
The actors will be the awarded The Hollywood Reporter's inaugural Breakthrough in Film Awards on Sunday for their roles as Nelson and Winnie Mandela.
The film will be released Stateside on November 29. 
Riaad Moosa, Terry Pheto, Naomie Harris, Idris Elba, Lindiwe Matshikiza and Deon Lotz gather to promote Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Cast photo: Riaad Moosa, Terry Pheto, Naomie Harris, Idris Elba, Lindiwe Matshikiza and Deon Lotz gather to promote Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2415680/Naomie-Harris-puts-sleek-form-display-purple-red-dress-promotes-Mandela-Idris-Elba-Toronto.html#ixzz2ePAHlZs5
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Naomie Harris dazzles in tulle cocktail dress at Long Walk To Freedom premiere... as Idris Elba is his dapper best in sharp suit

Naomie Harris dazzles in tulle cocktail dress at Long Walk To Freedom premiere... as Idris Elba is his dapper best in sharp suit

Idris Elba and Naomie Harris stole the show on Saturday when they attended the premiere of much vaunted biopic Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. 
The pair were on hand to support a film that sees both tipped for Oscar glory at next year’s Academy Awards for the respective portrayals of Nelson and Winnie Mandela in director Justin Chadwick’s adaptation of the iconic South African talisman’s 751 page autobiography. 
Wearing a black gown from Marchesa, British actress Naomie looked stunning as she posed for photos on the red carpet before making her way into Toronto’s Roy Thompson Hall for the film’s first official screening. 
Prom princess: Naomie Harris dazzled in a tulle cocktail dress as she attended the premiere of much vaunted biopic Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival on Saturday evening
Prom princess: Naomie Harris dazzled in a tulle cocktail dress as she attended the premiere of much vaunted biopic Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival on Saturday evening
The 36-year-old’s corseted tulle overlay cocktail dress with wide skirt and crinoline petticoat was matched with a pair of stiletto heels, while her centre-parted hair was pulled back from her face.
    While Naomie looked elegant, a relaxed Idris, 41, opted to team his smart two-piece suit with a pair of trainers. 
    The two actors were joined at the Toronto screening by co-star Terry Pheto and director Chadwick, who arrived with a female companion. 
    Dapper dude: Despite wearing trainers, Idris Elba looked every inch the perfect gentleman in his sharp suit as he hit the red carpet
    Dapper dude: Despite wearing trainers, Idris Elba looked every inch the perfect gentleman in his sharp suit as he hit the red carpet
    Dapper dude: Despite wearing trainers, Idris Elba looked every inch the perfect gentleman in his sharp suit as he hit the red carpet 
    Idris found fame playing notorious drug lord Russell ‘Stringer’ Bell in HBO series The Wire.
    His easy transition from small screen to silver screen, from Baltimore street dealer to South African leader, is all the more impressive given the short space of time in which it happened. 
    Other films have been made about Mandela, who is currently battling a lung infection, but Elba recently insisted that his version is by far the best - but was quick to add that he doesn’t look like the man he portrays. 
    Dressed to impress: Terry Pheto looked utterly showstopping in a dramatic backless floral detail gown as she posed at Roy Thompson Hall
    Dressed to impress: Terry Pheto looked utterly showstopping in a dramatic backless floral detail gown as she posed at Roy Thompson Hall
    Red carpet moment: The actress certainly commanded attention as she showcased her incredible gown for the photographers
    Red carpet moment: The actress certainly commanded attention as she showcased her incredible gown for the photographers
    He said: ‘If I get judged, which I will, about my performance or how I sound or how I look, I think people miss the point. 
    ‘The point is that this is called Long Walk to Freedom, this is the book about his life and it’s his own words.’ 
    Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom is scheduled for release on November 29. 
    Lady in red: Director Justin Chadwick enjoyed his moment as he posed with a female companion in a stunning scarlet gown
    Lady in red: Director Justin Chadwick enjoyed his moment as he posed with a female companion in a stunning scarlet gown



    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2415293/Naomie-Harris-dazzles-tulle-cocktail-dress-Long-Walk-To-Freedom-premiere--Idris-Elba-dapper-best-slick-suit.html#ixzz2eJSpoT7P
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook