DID YOU READ

Incoming: Biopics, remakes, bans.

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"An Imaginary Portrait."
Trailers: One for Steven Shainberg‘s near-fantastical Diane Arbus film "Fur," which premiered at Telluride this past weekend, here.

One for "Killshot," which features an oddly hairdoed Mickey Rourke and Joseph Gordon-Levitt (!) as professional killers menacing Diane Lane and Thomas Jane (the film is based on an Elmore Leonard novel), here.

And a teaser for Guillermo del Toro‘s "Pan’s Labyrinth" is here.

Via Gregg Goldstein at the Hollywood Reporter, Doug Block‘s acclaimed autobiographical documentary "51 Birch Street" will be released by 2929 Entertainment’s Truly Indie, and will open in New York on October 18th.

Via the Guardian, Peter Jackson is going to produce a remake of 1954 British war film "The Dambusters," with Jackson colleague Christian Rivers set to direct. We’d get all offended on behalf of the original film, but we haven’t seen it.

Via Coming Soon, Susan Sarandon and Chris Evans are in talks to join the cast of "Battle in Seattle," a film about the 1999 WTO protests in Seattle that has Charlize Theron already confirmed to star. It’s to be directed by her boyfriend, actor Stuart Townsend, who has apparently tired of competing for sinister prettyboy roles with fellow countrymen Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Cillian Murphy and decided to make his debut behind the camera.

Via Moviehole, Paul Fischer interviews Zach Braff and learns that we will have to wait another year for his next "Garden State"-ization of a European film: "The next thing I will do will be completely different, ‘Open Hearts,’ which is a Danish movie that I adapted. It’s a really dark drama about a car accident and the way the accident affects all the people involved in it. I was going to do it this summer, but since I couldn’t get my top people I’m waiting until next summer."

Via the AP,  "Chinese director Lou Ye has been banned from making movies in his home country for five years because his film was screened at Cannes in May without government approval, state media said." The film in question is "Summer Palace," which Lou could not get approved by state censors in time for its festival premiere. Lou was banned from making films in China for two years in 2000 after he shot "Suzhou River" with official permission. "Summer Palace" hasn’t been approved for release in China; it will play at Toronto but currently has no US distributor.

And via Maria Aspan at the New York Times, Edward Zwick‘s upcoming Leonardo DiCaprio vehicle "The Blood Diamond" is already being countermarketed against by the diamond industry. The World Diamond Council has set up diamondfacts.org to assure everyone that these days the diamond trade fuels health care and educational improvements, and hardly ever pays for the waging of bloody civil wars anymore.

+ Trailer: Fur (Moviefone)
+ Trailer: Killshot (iKlipz)
+ Teaser trailer: Pan’s Labyrinth (CHUD)
+ "Birch Street" finally on the movie map (Hollywood Reporter)
+ Peter Jackson lines up Dambusters remake (Guardian)
+ Sarandon & Evans Joining Battle in Seattle (ComingSoon.net)
+ Interview : Zach Braff (Moviehole)
+ China imposes 5-year ban on director (AP)
+ The Good Side of Diamonds, Before a Movie Shows the Bad (NY Times)

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon.

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number!

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time.

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by.

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo.

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim.

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t?

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?”

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud.

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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GIFs via Giffy

In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.