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DID YOU READ

“I’m still that kid who wants to be accepted.”

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"I hope this movie pisses people off."
Josh Rottenberg at Entertainment Weekly brings four directors together to "discuss the life of the modern auteur." It’s an odd angle for a feature, vaguely "none of these people are interesting enough for their own Q&A," but it does finally inform us of what a conversation between McG and Anthony Minghella would be like:

McG: I’m not that pure of an artist. I wish I were. I’m still that kid who wants to be accepted. I can’t just walk away and make my own little films in the closet.

MINGHELLA: Don’t apologize. It sounds like you’re apologizing.

McG: I suppose if I was a little more in touch with doing it for all the right reasons, I wouldn’t care. But I still sit in the back of the room and wring my hands and want so desperately for people to feel what I was trying to do.

McG is indeed on the cusp of his bid for Seriousness — his unfortunately named "We Are Marshall" opens on December 22nd. Christopher Guest and Catherine Hardwicke round out the rest of the auteur interview.

Other interviews: Over at Seed magazine, Anthony Kaufman talks with Darren Aronofsky:

How did you imagine the spaceship world of the film?

We had, at times, different controlling devices and holograms, but the more we played with it, the more we thought these are things that we can understand as a culture now, but actually might look ridiculous to us a generation down the line. So we decided to return the whole thing to an organic base. NASA has developed these biospheres, these spherical glass structures that have a balanced ecosystem that can live forever, in perpetuity. So we decided to create an environment where Tom and the Tree of Life lived in a balance. We developed the whole science of the ship, very deeply, probably too deeply because it doesn’t come across. But we thought if we had figured out how it all worked, it would sit in the background and be more truthful. So that’s how the bubble ship evolved and the organic nature of it.

Stephen Dalton interviews the ubiquitous Guillermo del Toro at the London Times:

As usual with Del Toro, the creature designs in Pan’s Labyrinth took shape in the sketchbook he always carries with him. He brings it to our interview, fingering its leather covers as we talk, bashfully awaiting an invitation to show off his work. Inside are page upon page of beautifully rendered beauties and beasts, part of a 300-page archive that spans his entire film career. “Four hundred pages if I had the Cronos one, which I gave away in a drunken stupor,” he sighs.

Delfin Vigil at the San Francisco Chronicle talks to Joshua Jackson about "Bobby":

"To tell you the truth, I hope this movie pisses people off," says Jackson, who, along with the rest of the cast, took the "Bobby" job for personal and political reasons. "This movie couldn’t be coming out at a better time for America because, unfortunately, there are too many parallels between 1968 and 2006. Pick your hot-button topic — war overseas, massive social inequality, deepening of racial and economic divides, social robber barons."

Oh, Pacey, you should be so lucky. At the Independent, Jonathan Romney interviews John Cameron Mitchell:

A particularly traumatic time was his spell in a Benedictine priory boys’ school in Scotland, where he was bullied a lot: "I did take comfort in the vespers and compline. I might have become a monk if I hadn’t come out." But his spiritual urgings didn’t chime with his awareness that he was gay: "You go to hell for that – we’re all going to hell, according to the Pope, because we’ve probably all masturbated and forgotten to confess it. Every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten," Mitchell says dryly, then after a perfectly timed pause, "There’s apparently a sex club called Killing Kittens."

Michael Giltz at the New York Daily News catches up with Kal Penn about…okay, about "National Lampoon’s Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj," but we love him. Also, he’ll be in that Jhumpa Lahiri adaptation next year — clahssay!

"Then it turns out that [director Mira Nair‘s] teenage son Zohran and his best friend, Sam, are huge ‘Harold & Kumar’ fans. They grabbed her, dragged her to a computer and said, ‘You need to watch Kal, he’s in our favorite movie, you have to audition him!’

"And every night Zohran would say, ‘Mom, did you get a hold of Kal yet?’ So if it were not for those two guys, I would not have gotten that movie."

And over at the Herald Sun, Jack Lewis chats up "Allan Smithee," the prefers-to-remain-anonymous author of "101 Movies to Avoid: The Most Overrated Films Ever!":

"I particularly hate long, slow films that you are supposed to unearth the ‘deeper meaning’ from. Cinema-going should be fun — it’s a shared experience and you should laugh, cry, tap your feet or cover your eyes.

"It’s not meant for tiresome and rather dull navel gazing or a road to being trendy (what the hell was Mulholland Drive about anyway?)

"It’s time for people to say that they don’t care about Sylvia Plath and that Gwyneth Paltrow is just plain annoying."

Those are approximately the sentiments we recall being expressed when "Sylvia" came out, so we have some doubts about the accuracy of Mr. Smithee’s sacred cowometer. Ah, but we suppose everyone need a schtick.

+ Lights, Camera, Inspiration (Entertainment Weekly)
+ TRANSCENDING DEATH (SEED)
+ When the biggest monsters are human (London Times)
+ ‘Dawson’s’ Actor Inspired by ‘Bobby’ (SF Chronicle)
+ John Cameron Mitchell: Let’s talk dirty (Independent)
+ Kal Penn goes to Hollywood (NY Daily News)
+ Classics? Don’t make me laugh (Herald Sun)

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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