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A note about topics: Some blog posts have more than one topic, in which case only one main topic can be chosen to represent that post. This means that some topics may have been discussed in posts labeled otherwise. For instance, a post that discusses both The Boston Stranglers and The Demolished Man may only be labeled one or the other. Please keep this in mind as you navigate this list.
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Tuesday, March 28, 2017
BIRTH. MOVIES. DEATH. ON 'BABY DRIVER'
"IT'S THE MOST REVOLUTIONARY TAKE ON THE MOVIE MUSICAL SINCE DE PALMA'S 'PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE'"
Birth. Movies. Death.'s Jacob Knight, excited that Sony has moved the release date up six weeks to June 28th, writes the following about Edgar Wright's Baby Driver:

"Baby Driver is unlike anything you’ve ever seen – a rip-roaring Walter Hill homage that takes 40 years’ worth of action picture grammar, places it in a blender, and then adds a healthy spike of pop music bliss. If Busby Berkeley were obsessed with crashing cars (for real – the driving stunts are 100% practical and mind-blowing), this is the motion picture he’d make. It’s the most revolutionary take on the movie musical since Brian De Palma’s Phantom of the Paradise, and melted the faces of all who attended its SXSW World Premiere."

Deadline's Brian Brooks filed a report from SXSW on March 11. Here's an excerpt:

Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver hit the ground with tires squealing this evening at its world premiere at SXSW, with the writer-director and key cast along for the ride for the packed screening at the Paramount Theater. “That is going to make a lot of money,” was among the comments overheard as the revved-up audience left the screening and a boisterous post-movie Q&A that climaxed Day 2 at the festival.

Wright took the stage for the Q&A joined by stars Jon Hamm, Eiza González and Ansel Elgort, who plays the young innocent Baby, an unlikely maestro behind the wheel of a getaway car. The music-fueled actioner is the first film Wright wrote by himself (he previously co-wrote features he also directed including Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World and The World’s End), and said tonight that Baby Driver had “existed” in his head for 22 years...

...“I was just listening through my record collection and I’d envision scenes,” Wright said tonight of how his movie came together. “I wouldn’t write scenes until I found the right track.” Music is central to the film. Gunshots, dialogue and action sequences are choreographed to the mostly high-energy soundtrack. Elgort’s Baby is the getaway driver for a crime boss (Spacey) who taps various criminals to pull off high-stakes heists. Each job becomes more intense than the last, and the chases more outlandish. Baby Driver is an homage to the ’70s car chase movies of Walter Hill, whose voice can be heard in the movie.

In 2012, Wright did the first read-through of a draft screenplay with Hamm, the only actor from that year who remained on the project. “This is a departure from the films I’ve done in the past,” said Wright. “It definitely took the longest [of my projects] to write.”

Previously:
Edgar Wright influenced by De Palma for Baby Driver


Posted by Geoff at 9:05 PM CDT
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Monday, March 20, 2017
CARLOTTA BOOK - 'DR. BRIAN AND MR. DE PALMA'
DE PALMA ON THE PERSONAL & THE COMMERCIAL: "WHAT IS A 'COMMERCIAL FILM' ANYWAY?...IT'S NOT THAT SIMPLE"


On its Facebook page last week, Carlotta Films revealed the title and cover of the 160-page book that will be included in its Phantom Of The Paradise Ultra Collector's Box, due to be released April 12. The book is titled "Dr. Brian And Mr. De Palma," and will include a lengthy interview with Brian De Palma, reviews of the film, press materials, lyrics of all the songs in the film, and 40 archive photos. Here is how the book is described on the Carlotta website:
"What is a 'commercial film,' anyway? How do you know if a director makes a film because it is commercial, or because it corresponds to a personal desire? People often think that a personal film is not necessarily commercial, but it's not that simple. I would like to make a film that people really want to see. Fellini too, and it does not make him a 'commercial' director. - Brian De Palma

Dr. Brian and Mr. De Palma explores the duality inherent in Brian De Palma's work in Phantom of the Paradise. Through an in-depth interview with him, analyses and press reviews, the iconoclastic approach of the director unfolds, between celebration and criticism of popular culture. An unpublished work embellished with the lyrics of all the songs of the film and 40 photos from the archives.


Most of the other special features in the Blu-ray-and-DVD set, which includes a brand new 2K restoration of the film, have appeared on previous editions of Phantom:

-PRESENTATION BY GERRIT GRAHAM
-PARADISE REGAINED (52 min)
-BRIAN DE PALMA IN THE COULISSES OF THE PARADISE (33 min) (a look back with De Palma)
-PAUL WILLIAMS INTERVIEWED BY GUILLERMO DEL TORO (72 mn)
-THE SWAN SONG FIASCO (11 min)
-CARTE BLANCHE WITH ROSANNA NORTON (10 min)
-PARADISE LOST AND FOUND (six cut or alternate scenes)
-KARAOKÉ 6 SONGS
-COMMERCIAL BY WILLIAM FINLEY
-RADIO SPOTS
-TRAILERS

As reported earlier, the cover art for the box was done by Matt Taylor.


Posted by Geoff at 5:16 AM CDT
Updated: Monday, March 20, 2017 5:55 PM CDT
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Sunday, February 19, 2017
'THE WALKING DEAD' HAS A WINSLOW
THAT, TO AT LEAST ONE VIEWER, IS OVERT REFERENCE TO 'PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE'
Joseph McCabe at Nerdist thinks that Winslow, the name of the walker on this week's episode of AMC's The Walking Dead, is "an obvious reference to the title character in Brian De Palma’s Phantom of the Paradise, a disfigured musician who wears a similar chrome dome." While the "obvious" here may in fact be coincidence, it is worth remembering that The Walking Dead is produced by De Palma's ex-wife, Gale Anne Hurd.

Posted by Geoff at 11:59 PM CST
Updated: Monday, February 20, 2017 12:08 AM CST
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Tuesday, January 24, 2017
CARLOTTA UNVEILS 'PHANTOM' ULTRA COVER ART
AND 'PHANTOM' TO SCREEN IN 35MM AT STOCKHOLM CINEMATEK MARCH 21


Two days ago, on its Facebook page, Carlotta Films unveiled the above cover for its upcoming Ultra Collector's Box of Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise, which will be available April 12th. The cover art was created by Matt Taylor. It sounds like more specs will be announced as we get closer to release date, but the set will include a brand new 2K restoration of the film, two hours of supplements, and a 150-page book that will collect articles and analyses, archived promotional materials, interviews, and more.

Meanwhile, on March 21st, Phantom Of The Paradise will screen in 35mm at the Stockholm Cinematek. The screening will be introduced by Ari Gunnar Thorsteinsson, a film critic who has written for IndieWire, among others.


Posted by Geoff at 8:06 PM CST
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Friday, January 6, 2017
CARLOTTA ULTRA 'PHANTOM' BOX - APRIL 12
NEW RESTORATION, BLU-RAY/DVD, BOOK, COVER ART AND OTHER SPECS STILL TO BE REVEALED
Carlotta Films announced on its Facebook page today that it will release an Ultra Collector's Box of Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise on April 12. The set will include a brand new 2K restoration of the film. If it is mostly like the Ultra Collector's Box of De Palma's Body Double that they released in 2015, we can expect that the discs will be region free. The cover art depicted here is not final-- for Body Double, Carlotta had commissioned a fantastic illustration by Jay Shaw. Other features of the set have not yet been specified, but when pressed in the comments of the Facebook post, Carlotta responded, "the book will bring together many texts and analyses unreleased on the film archives, exclusive promotions, interviews of the era... and much more!"

Posted by Geoff at 10:25 PM CST
Updated: Saturday, January 7, 2017 11:04 AM CST
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Friday, October 28, 2016
MARC EDWARD HEUCK ON 'PHANTOM' - NEW BEV


From Marc Edward Heuck's program notes for the New Bev's screenings of Phantom Of The Paradise this past week:
Recently, one of the New Beverly’s favorite working directors, Edgar Wright, hosted a screening of Brian De Palma’s Phantom of the Paradise at the Picturehouse Central cinema in Picadilly, London. Most of the audience consisted of first-time viewers, unfamiliar with the film or its star and librettist Paul Williams, drawn to the event by their appreciation of Wright and their trust in his cinematic taste. The post-show reactions yielded the kind of rapture that modern film promoters can only dream of:

It is merely serendipitous timing that Wright’s UK screening took place mere weeks before the New Beverly’s upcoming shows on October 26th and 27th, but it provides excellent preamble. Moreover, it continues the film’s reputation as possibly the single greatest cult horror rock musical that is still criminally underseen by a wide audience. Or, to apply Wright’s welcoming and positive spin, it is the single greatest cult horror rock musical that millions still have the wonderful opportunity to experience for the first time.


Later in the essay, Heuck notes, "Eagle-eyed grindhouse movie lovers should pay close attention during the scene in Swan’s boudoir. Among the beautiful groupies clamoring for Swan’s affections are Jennifer Ashley from The Centerfold Girls, Robin Mattson of Bonnie’s Kids, Janus Blythe from The Hills Have Eyes, Patrice Rohmer from Revenge of the Cheerleaders, Janit Baldwin from the would-be Carrie ripoff Ruby, and Cheryl “Rainbeaux” Smith from Lemora, Swinging Cheerleaders, Caged Heat and many more."

Posted by Geoff at 12:41 AM CDT
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Saturday, October 15, 2016
LIVING IN PARADISE, DE PALMA-STYLE

Posted by Geoff at 3:03 PM CDT
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Monday, October 3, 2016
'PHANTOM' DOUBLE FEATURE AT NEW BEV OCT 26-27


On October 26 and 27, the Beverly Cinema in Los Angeles will screen a double feature: Rupert Julian 1925 silent, The Phantom Of The Opera at 7:30pm, followed by Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise at 9:35pm. Both will be presented in 35mm.

Posted by Geoff at 11:31 PM CDT
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Tuesday, August 30, 2016
'PHANTOM' PARTY AT PHILHARMONIE DE PARIS
SEPT 17, PART OF FAUST WEEKEND; SCREENING OF DE PALMA FILM, AFTERSHOW PARTY
As part of its Faust Weekend (September 16-18), the Philharmonie de Paris will present a "Phantom Of The Paradise Party" on Saturday, September 17th. Tickets for the event have already sold out, but you can enter your email address at the website to be placed on a waiting list, in case of cancellations, etc. The evening will begin with a performance by singer/songwriter Thomas De Pourquery, followed by a screening of Brian De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise, and concluding with an aftershow: "The Paradise Party."

The page description of the event goes like this: "Inspired by the Faust legend, Phantom of the Paradise is one of Brian De Palma's great masterpieces. The tremendous soundtrack is a motley mix of the various trends of the day, from soft rock and glam rock to the beginnings of heavy metal."

(Thanks to Luu and Donald!)


Posted by Geoff at 11:57 PM CDT
Updated: Wednesday, August 31, 2016 12:11 AM CDT
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Saturday, August 20, 2016
WRIGHT TO PRESENT 'PHANTOM' IN LONDON OCT 10
PART OF CULTURE SHOCK SERIES AT PICTUREHOUSE, "EDGAR WRIGHT PRESENTS.."


Hot on the heels of its Nicolas Winding Refn Presents… series, which included Brian De Palma's Body Double, Picturehouse and Culture Shock bring a season of Edgar Wright Presents.... This series, which begins September 12th, will include a screening of De Palma's Phantom Of The Paradise on October 10th.

Edgar Wright's Verdict: "Brian De Palma’s only rock-and-roll horror opera! Does that not grab you? For my money it’s better than The Rocky Horror Picture Show, with a satirical script, eye-popping visuals, and iconic cult performances by Paul Williams, Gerritt Graham, Jessica Harper and William Finley. Obsessed over by Guillermo Del Toro, Daft Punk and myself, this will become your new favourite cult movie."

The series page states, "Mr Wright will try and introduce them all in person, but as he is a very busy man look out for confirmation via social media as the dates approach!" The other films chosen by Wright are: Michael Cimino's Thunderbolt And Lightfoot, John Landis' The Blues Brothers, Joel and Ethan Coen's Raising Arizona, Walter Hill's The Driver, and Russ Meyer's Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls.


Posted by Geoff at 6:10 PM CDT
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