Published 1 hour ago on 21 Aug 1919
Fantastic Fest is proud to announce its second wave of programming, led by a closing night screening of writer-director Rian Johnson's hotly anticipated new Lionsgate and MRC mystery Knives Out. A tribute to the work of Agatha Christie, Knives Out stars Daniel Craig as debonair Detective Benoit Blanc, sent to investigate the death of a renowned crime novelist played by Christopher Plummer. Knives Out will be Fantastic Fest 2019's closing night film with Johnson in attendance for a special presentation at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar in Austin, TX on Thursday, September 26th.
"Rian Johnson is a consistently thrilling and brilliant director whose work has enthralled Fantastic Fest audiences for the past 15 years," said Fantastic Fest Creative Director Evrim Ersoy. "The chance to close out the festival with his unique and ingenious murder mystery was too good an offer to pass up!"
Cannes Palme d'Or winner Parasite will also play this year's Fantastic Fest with director Bong Joon-ho SNOWPIERCER, OKJA in attendance. Reaping near-universal acclaim around the world, Parasite is a darkly comic tale of two very different families who find their lives inexplicably intertwined.
This year, Fantastic Fest celebrates the rich and varied history of Mexican genre film with a trio of rarely seen repertory titles, programmed in association with Mexico City's Mórbido Film Fest. In The Black Pit of Dr. M Misterios De Ultratumba, two doctors make an unholy bet to discover just what's in the afterlife in The Ship of Monsters La Nave De Los Monstruos, two extraterrestrials traverse the universe collecting sample species to repopulate their planet resulting in the wildest spaceship ever with a wide array of characters from singing cowboys to Martian princes and other otherworldly beings starring none other than the brilliant Lorena Velázquez and finally, Trampa Infernal a.k.a. Hell's Trap sees a group of young people go after a bear, only to find themselves terrorized by a crazed Vietnam vet in a mannequin mask and Freddy Krueger glove, combining the best of slasher traditions with an incredible visual style and '80s fashions galore! A dedicated shorts program exploring up and coming young Mexican filmmakers will be presented as part of the program, as well, which will be announced at a later date.
Mórbido Film Fest's head of programming Abraham Castillo Flores will give a lecture titled "The Mórbido Crypt's Guide to Mexican Fantasy and Horror Cinema," a co-presentation with The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies, founded by film writer/programmer/producer Kier-La Janisse. The sidebar is also supported by Cine Las Americas, the Mexican Film Institute IMCINE, the Consulate General of Mexico in Austin, Fundación Televisa, Alameda Films, and Grupo Galindo.
"As Mórbido continues its primal mission to promote Mexican fantasy and horror cinema throughout the world, we are proud to collaborate with Fantastic Fest to highlight three unique films that represent peculiar moments in our complex national film history," says Flores.
Fantastic Fest shows its full rainbow colors with a sidebar dedicated to LGBTQ+ representation in genre cinema, including the US Premiere of Scream, Queen: My Nightmare on Elm Street, a documentary focusing on the journey Mark Patton's life took from actor to activist after starring in A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge, as well as a rep screening of that seminal title with the cast in attendance. There will be a very special presentation of Norman J. Warren's Prey 1977, which focuses on the disintegration of a relationship amidst a very real alien threat. The sidebar wraps up with a screening of Lyle with director Stewart Thorndike in attendance, where the grief of a mother turns to abject paranoia when she suspects her neighbors of being part of a satanic cult.
"The two most unwavering pieces of my identity - my queerness and my love of horror - come together in some fascinating and unexpected ways over the course of film history," says Fantastic Fest programmer Brian Kelley. "I can't think of a better group of people to explore and celebrate some of the crazy, frequently daring and often challenging films that make up the universe of queer horror with than my Fantastic Fest family."
Fantastic Fest's LGBTQ+ sidebar is proudly sponsored by Shudder and co-presented by community partners aGLIFF and OUTsider, the Horror Queers podcast, and drag horror titans Peaches Christ and Louisianna Purchase, who along with Die Felicia will slay at an epic BYOW Bring Your Own Wig party in The Highball.
Related: Red Dawn Announced as Fantastic Fest 2012's Closing Night Film
The witching hour arriveth at Fantastic Fest and with it brings titles that promise the audience all those forbidden sights that the daytime can't handle. In the World Premiere of Joe Begos' VFW, a group of veterans find themselves in a deadly showdown against a gang of punk mutants dead-set on killing them. Also from Begos is Bliss, where a creative mental block threatens to tip an artist into uncontrollable bloodbath in a very special 35mm screening. Seth Ickerman expands the unique vision of a neon sci-fi universe first presented within his astounding short Turbo Killer and teams up once again with synth master Carpenter Brut in the North American premiere of Blood Machines. And Richard Stanley recruits the help of Nicolas Cage to explore just what mysteries Color Out of Space holds in an adaptation of the seminal Lovecraft story in the US premiere of the highly-anticipated title.
Science fiction and visions of the future are represented at the festival with a trio of titles that run the gamut of all fears. Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson return to the festival for the US Premiere of their newest fever-dream Synchronic starring Anthony Mackie and Jamie Dornan as a pair of paramedics in the throes of a losing battle against a brand new designer drug. Jesse Eisenberg and Imogen Poots are a couple who find themselves moving into their dream house, only to discover a trap in Lorcan Finnegan's Cannes hit Vivarium. And in a small town in 1950s New Mexico, a mysterious radio signal sends a pair of teenagers on an exciting journey to discover its source in the masterful debut The Vast of Night from director Andrew Patterson.
Cinema itself is explored at Fantastic Fest with a duo of documentaries that focus on wildly varied subjects. Gilles Penso & Alexandre Poncet's Phil Tippet - Mad Dreams and Monsters takes an extensive look at the great genius behind the visual effects of films such as Robocop, Star Wars and Jurassic Park while Iron Fists and Kung Fu Kicks explores the history of kung fu cinema from 1960s Hong Kong through '70s 42nd Street and beyond with the help of experts, historians, kung fu stars and more! Prior to the festival, Alamo Drafthouse will be running a series to prep for the screening titled Fists of Iron, Wheels of Steel where Texas DJs will be live-scoring some of the most beloved Kung Fu classics, including Master of the Flying Guillotine with DJ Jester the Filipino Fist, Police Story with DJ Catwalk, and more!
The world at large is explored through a genre lens with films that take aim at topical subjects. In the US Premiere of Karl Markovics' Nobadi, the unlikely friendship between an old German man and a migrant worker will show them the true horror of their existence, while the US Premiere of The Platform sees society use a very new and unique punishment for criminals and those in need. In Abou Leila, two men hunt for a vicious terrorist leader while trying to hide from the bloodstains in their soul, and in the US Premiere of Orçun Behram's The Antenna, a sinister government broadcast in Turkey corrupts the very nature of everything it touches.
Worldwide, weird and wonderful genre films return with a selection of titles that refuse to be categorized. In Martin Krejčí's The True Adventure of Wolfboy, an unusual young man goes on a journey of discovery with a roster of eccentric characters in a film that mixes the best of fairy-tales and Czech magical realism. In Vhyes, the discovery of a video camcorder leads a 12-year-old boy to create a unique time capsule. In Patrick, a young man goes to extreme lengths to find his lost hammer in his father's nudist colony. Finally, in Butt Boy, a man discovers he has a fetish of the most extraordinary kind during a routine prostate examination.
More FF alumni return to the festival with new and exciting titles. Mickey Reece uses the cold backdrop of a New England winter to explore a homecoming of a very weird kind in the astounding Climate of the Hunter. In Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz's The Lodge, the relationship between two children and their stepmother gets strained to its murderous limit when the trio are trapped in a cabin. And Mattie Do explores the power of mistakes, choices, and consequences in the stunning and unique Laotian science-fiction exploration The Long Walk.
Fantastic Fest 2019 Second Wave Film Lineup:
ABOU LEILAAlgeria, France, Qatar, 2019North American Premiere, 139 minDirector - Amin Sidi-BoumédièneIn the midst of the Algerian Civil War, Lotfi ventures into the desert with his lifelong friend S., who hopes to find and kill the elusive, dangerous terrorist Abou Leila.
THE ANTENNATurkey, 2019US Premiere, 115 minDirector - Orçun BehramSomewhere within an unnamed city in Turkey, the residents of an apartment block await the installation of their new antenna as ordered by the central government. No one can prepare them for the evil that will be unleashed.
THE BLACK PIT OF DR. MMexico, 1959Repertory Screening, 82 minDirector - Fernando MéndezTwo doctors make a pact on behalf of science: Whichever one dies first will return to share the secrets of the afterlife. This pact will not end well.
BLISSUSA, 2019Texas Premiere, 80 minDirector - Joe BegosWhile trying to complete her latest painting, a starving artist facing a lack of inspiration spirals out of control in a blaze of blood-soaked, drug-fueled glory.
BLOOD MACHINESFrance, USA, 2019North American Premiere, 50 minDirector - Seth IckermanThe wild sequel to the Carpenter Brut music video, "Turbo Killer," shoots you into a turbulent psychedelic adventure of galactic hunters tracking down the soul of a spaceship set to a killer synthwave soundtrack.
BUTT BOYUSA, 2019World Premiere, 100 minDirector - Tyler CornackIn attendance - Director Tyler CornackWriter/director/comedian Tyler Cornack's Butt Boy introduces us to Chip, a middle-aged man whose first prostate exam stirs feelings deep inside leading to an addiction that can only be shown to Fantastic Fest audiences.
CLIMATE OF THE HUNTERUSA, 2019World Premiere, 90 minDirector - Mickey ReeceThe "Soderbergh of the Sticks," Mickey Reece, returns to Fantastic Fest with his 27th feature. Two beautiful sisters vie for the affections of a man who may or may not be a vampire.
COLOR OUT OF SPACEUSA, 2019US Premiere, 111 minDirector - Richard StanleyUnimaginable terrors befall the Gardner family after a meteorite lands on their front lawn in Richard Stanley's entrancing, horrific adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's short story.
IRON FISTS AND KUNG FU KICKSAustralia, 2019North American Premiere, 107 minDirector - Serge OuFrom the Shaw Brothers to The Matrix, this wild documentary tells the story of how kung fu films conquered the world from the 1960s to now.
KNIVES OUTUSA, 2019Special Presentation, 130 minDirector - Rian JohnsonIn attendance - Director Rian JohnsonFrom acclaimed writer, director Rian Johnson comes Knives Out, a fresh and modern take on the classic "whodunnit" mystery genre.
THE LODGEUSA, 2019Texas Premiere, 108 minDirectors - Veronika Franz & Severin FialaFive years after Goodnight Mommy stunned Fantastic Fest audiences, Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala are back with another disturbing psychological twister about a brother and sister spending Christmas with their shadowy soon-to-be stepmother.
THE LONG WALKLaos, Spain, Singapore, 2019US Premiere, 115 minDirector - Mattie DoIn attendance - Director Mattie DoAn old Laotian hermit discovers that the ghost of a road accident victim can transport him back in time fifty years to the moment of his mother's painful death.
LYLE2014, USARepertory Screening, 65 minDirector - Stewart ThorndikeIn attendance - Director Stewart ThorndikeAfter the loss of her child, a young woman begins to suspect that her neighbors might be part of a satanic cult and that she might be their next target.
A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 2: FREDDY'S REVENGEUSA, 1985Repertory Screening, 87 minDirector - Jack SholderIn attendance - Actors Mark Patton and Kim MyersJesse Mark Patton is the new kid on Elm Street and Freddy Krueger might not be the only monster in the closet in this much discussed but under-appreciated queer horror classic.
NOBADIAustria, 2019US Premiere, 90 minDirector - Karl MarkovicsIn a retirement allotment in Vienna, a crabby 91-year-old finds both himself and his humanity when he hires an Afghani refugee to help him in Karl Markovics' remarkable and poignant third feature.
PARASITESouth Korea, 2019Texas Premiere, 131 minDirector - Bong Joon-hoIn attendance - Director Bong Joon-hoBong Joon-ho's seventh feature - about an unemployed Korean family conning their way out of their basement apartment - is a roller coaster ride of laughs, gasps, horror, tears, and perfection.
PATRICKBelgium, 2019North American Premiere, 97 minDirector - Tim MielantsPatrick is not having an easy time. First his domineering father passed away and now his favorite hammer is missing. Before the day is out, Patrick's search will lead him to discover answers to the questions he didn't even know existed.
PHIL TIPPETT - MAD DREAMS AND MONSTERSFrance, 2019International Premiere, 80 minDirectors - Gilles Penso & Alexandre PoncetAfter their documentary Creature Designers - The Frankenstein Complex, French journalist Alexandre Poncet and filmmaker Gilles Penso deliver an in-depth, sad, and beautiful documentary about the stop motion and VFX artist Phil Tippett, a man who changed the landscape of visual effects in film.
THE PLATFORMSpain, 2019US Premiere, 90 minDirector - Galder Gaztelu-UrrutiaIn attendance - Director Galder Gaztelu-UrrutiaSomewhere in the future exists The Platform, a vertically tiered prison where the upper levels have access to exquisite food and the lower levels fight for survival. Level assignments are random, but how long can a prisoner's luck hold? One man is about to find out.
PREY1977, United KingdomRepertory Screening, 78 minDirector - Norman J. WarrenJessica and Josephine find more than their relationship at stake when they're chosen by a shape-shifting alien as his target for an observational study.
SCREAM, QUEEN! MY NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREETUSA, 2019US Premiere, 100 minDirectors - Roman Chimienti & Tyler JensenIn attendance - Directors Roman Chimienti and Tyler JensenMore than thirty years after its release and his departure from Hollywood, Mark Patton star of A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 2: FREDDY'S REVENGE, sets the record straight on the famously queer horror sequel in this fabulous, surprising, and eye-opening documentary.
THE SHIP OF MONSTERSMexico, 1960Repertory Screening, 81 minDirector - Rogelio A. GonzálezTwo Venusian women and their robot servant are on a mission to find suitable candidates to repopulate their planet. Soon their ship is filled with bizarre specimens from across the universe, leading to an adventure like no other!
SYNCHRONICUSA, 2019US Premiere, 96 minDirectors - Justin Benson & Aaron MoorheadIn attendance - Directors Justin Benson and Aaron MoorheadTwo paramedics find their world ripped apart when they start encountering deaths linked to the otherworldly effects of a new designer drug called Synchronic.
TRAMPA INFERNALMexico, 1989Repertory Screening, 77 minDirector - Pedro Galindo IIIIn Mexico's most notorious unseen video-era masterblast, a crew of toxically masculine bear murderers runs afoul of a forest-dwelling war veteran wearing a mannequin mask and Freddy Krueger glove. Entertainment ensues!
THE TRUE ADVENTURES OF WOLFBOYUSA, 2019North American Premiere, 88 minDirector - Martin KrejčíSuffering from hypertrichosis - which covers him with animal-like fur - Paul knows he's not like other kids. But a seemingly random package from his estranged mother will send him on a journey of self-discovery alongside extraordinary characters.
THE VAST OF NIGHTUSA, 2019Texas Premiere, 90 minDirector - Andrew PattersonA rural 1950s radio DJ and a telephone operator uncover a strange signal that could change everything in this stunning science fiction debut feature.
VFWUSA, 2019World Premiere, 92 minDirector - Joe BegosIn attendance - Director Joe BegosIn the near future, a new drug called Hype has turned America into a war zone. The addicted are more mutant than human, and they've set their sights on assaulting a VFW post in Joe Begos' star-studded latest.
VHYESUSA, 2019World Premiere, 71 minDirector - Jack Henry RobbinsIn attendance - Director Jack Henry RobbinsThis bizarre retro comedy, shot entirely on VHS and Beta, takes us back to when 12-year-old Ralph, over one formative week, mistakenly records home videos and his favorite late night shows over his parents' wedding tape.
VIVARIUMIreland, Belgium, Denmark, 2019US Premiere, 98 minDirector - Lorcan FinneganWhen young couple Gemma Imogen Poots and Tom Jesse Eisenberg drive out to a maze of temptingly affordable houses in the suburbs, they find themselves unable to leave.
Published 5 hour ago on 21 Aug 1919
The ballroom lights have dimmed on the second season of Pose.
After nine episodes full of heartbreak and hope, exploring the struggles and triumphs of the LGBTQ ball scene in early ྖs New York &mdash including the impact of Madonna's "Vogue" and fatal attacks against trans women of color, among other topics &mdash the Janet Mock-directed finale, "In My Heels," returned its focus to Blanca Evangelista's HIV diagnosis, which had advanced to AIDS, as revealed by Nurse Judy Sandra Bernhard in the season premiere of FX's groundbreaking drama.
"We love taking our audience on an emotional roller coaster, and I think we've accomplished that," Steven Canals tells The Hollywood Reporter of Tuesday night's concluding episode, which he wrote alongside fellow co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk. "For us, it was about closing out a critical narrative that was the launching pad for the season. It felt important to us."
Following a medical setback in the spring of 1991, nine months after season two's penultimate episode took place, Mj Rodriguez's typically optimistic character, Blanca, reflects on her mortality and her role as mother to the now-dissipated House of Evangelista. But, after reuniting with her children, dancer Damon Ryan Jamaal Swain &mdash who has gone on to become an international choreographer &mdash and the newly engaged couple, model Angel Indya Moore and hustler-turned-businessman Lil Papi Angel Bismark Curiel, Blanca rediscovers her passion to perform and her will to leave a legacy behind.
"We also had to circle back because we have very sharp viewers and their question would inevitably be, 'What is going to happen with Blanca and her heh?'" adds Canals. "Now that we've addressed it, we can start telling new stories and begin new threads for season three."
Below, the writer-producer-director talks more with THR about the highs and lows depicted in season two of Pose, while also sharing his vision for the future of the Emmy-nominated series.
Pose scored an early season three renewal &mdash unlike last year, when it came after the season had already aired. How did a more certain future help you craft the season two finale?
With the second season, we've proven &mdash or hopefully established with our audience &mdash that our approach is always going to be family first. It's always going to be about heart, connection, empathy and love. And you see that at the end of the second season. Maybe it's not in the way that one would have expected. Most people, probably, if they hear, "Oh, the second season ends on a happy note," you would assume that probably means the House of Evangelista comes back together again. And it does, but it's not in the way that we've seen it before.
The first season also ended on a very uplifting note. Was that purposeful in case the show hadn't been renewed?
It was purposeful, but it didn't have anything to do with us not knowing about a second season. Though we didn't know if we were coming back, we, as a writers' room, never write from a place of fear. The reason we ended the first season on a happy note was because that was the story that we were telling during the first season. We didn't shy away from the grittiness and the reality of what it meant to be an LGBTQ person of color living in New York in the ྌs. With that said, the show is aspirational, it's hopeful, it's about family and it's about resilience. And it would have felt disingenuous for us to tell this family drama, where at the end, we left you with a cliffhanger or a pit in your stomach.
The finale for season two featured a time jump to May 1991, after spending most of the season in 1990 when Madonna's "Vogue" was released. Will there be another time jump in season three?
I've thought a little bit about it. Right now, we're on our hiatus. As a writers' room, when we pick back up, that's when we'll dive into that discussion. Truth be told, between seasons one and two, Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Janet Mock, Our Lady J and I had an email thread and we were constantly sending each other links to articles that we found and things that we thought would be interesting to explore during season two. We had a text chain where whenever we saw something fascinating, we made sure to share it. I'm certain that will happen for season three, that during this hiatus, we'll continue to share ideas with one another so that when we get back together in the room for season three, all of us will be on the same page and ready to go. But the short answer to your question is no, we haven't necessarily planted a flag yet as to whether or not we'll stick with a direct pickup from the finale or if we'll time-jump again.
The song "Vogue" almost acted as a secondary character in season two. Is there another event or theme that you'd like to center season three on?
There are two pretty big events that we've talked about in the writers' room. We're obviously not there yet, but it feels like we're working toward those moments. One of them is the AIDS Quilt, which was put out on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.. That's one event that we've talked about and then the other is obviously the HIV/AIDS medication cocktail that came around 1996. Again, that's ྜ and I doubt we'd do such a dramatic time jump between seasons two and three.
"Vogue" came out the same year as Jennie Livingston's ballroom doc Paris Is Burning, which I know has inspired your work on Pose &mdash and Livingston, herself, even directed episode 207, "Blow." Though the ballroom community was most likely talking about Paris Is Burning in 1990, the characters on Pose never mentioned it in season two. Was that intentional?
That's a great question. When we were first developing Pose, we did have conversations about Paris Is Burning and there was a version of the show where we had characters who were from the film. We were going to have Pepper LaBeija and Dorian Corey be characters on the show. Part of the reason we decided not to do that is that we would then be beholden to the truth. We still are, frankly, but the truth of a person's life is tough because there's always going to be some creative license. So, we felt it would make more sense to honor those folks' lives and tell a story about ballroom and what it meant to survive in New York in the ྌs and ྖs instead. When we went into season two, we were very aware of the fact that our show is in conversation with Paris Is Burning. We obviously wanted to pay homage to all the individuals who are in Paris Is Burning and Jennie's landmark work. For example, Elektra's narrative in the third episode with hiding the body in the closet is directly inspired by Dorian Corey's experience. There were ways that we gave a nod to the documentary without having to directly address it in the show.
The season two finale ends with Blanca seemingly interested in adopting two new house children, Quincy and Chilly, played by KJ Aikens and Gia Parr, respectively. Was this to set up a House of Evangelista 2.0 for season three?
That's how it feels, right? This is the next era for the House of Evangelista. The reality is &mdash and it's all in the setup of who Blanca is in the pilot &mdash that Blanca has a deep desire to leave a legacy behind. Blanca being a mother is such a large part of what Pose is about, and certainly, I would argue, the largest part of her character arc. The show is about motherhood and what it means to mother and to be mothered. Obviously, the last bit of the season we saw the dissolution of the House of Evangelista. Now, Blanca needs to figure out what her role is and who she is when her other kids have moved on. How does her mothering continue to evolve? Even if, moving forward, Quincy and Chilly aren't specifically her children or aren't in a revamped House of Evangelista, what we wanted the audience to take away from that moment is that Blanca isn't done being a mom and that it's a core part of who she is as a woman.
So, is it too early to say whether Aikens and Parr will return for season three as series regulars?
At this point, yes.
Pose made stars out of Mj Rodriguez and Indya Moore, and Billy Porter's portrayal of Pray Tell earned him an Emmy nom. By possibly expanding the House of Evangelista, are you looking for new talent to "discover" or give a platform to?
Absolutely. The opportunity to do that even extends beyond Pose. I'm going to speak for all of us and say every single one of us in that writers' room recognizes just how life-changing Pose has been &mdash for us, the cast and the audience. Every single one of us, beyond Pose and moving forward and thinking about other projects, will always consider centering people who often aren't centered. Speaking for myself as a queer person of color, holding those identities, I know that my work will in some way always resonate with those communities &mdash with the LGBTQ community and hopefully with black and brown folks &mdash because those are the boxes that I check. I grew up not feeling seen and I know how critical representation is, especially for young people growing up and, in this climate, in particular, where we are consistently having to fight to be seen and heard, and for people to know that our lives and our voices matter. I know that my work will always uplift the communities that matter the most to me.
What would you like to explore more of in season three?
I definitely would love to see Blanca find love. Something that I would really love for us to explore in season three would be Blanca in a relationship and how that affects the relationships she has with her kids. For example, Lil Papi is so protective of Blanca. How is he going to interact with Blanca having a lover? And if this lover moves into her home and, presumably, if there is a House of Evangelista 2.0 &mdash whatever that looks like, whatever shape that takes &mdash how are they now interacting with Blanca having this live-in lover? Those are some of the things that I think would be really fun and interesting to explore moving forward.
After leaving the Evangelista nest, how will Damon, Angel and Lil Papi fit into Blanca's new world?
What's important for the audience to remember is that Damon, Angel and Lil Papi will always be Evangelistas. They'll always be Blanca's children. They'll always have a special relationship with her. And I don't even know that we could say definitively that they won't ever be back in Blanca's house &mdash literally and figuratively. If we're thinking about actual ballroom, folks sort of go off and do other things with their lives and then they return. So, it's realistic for us to consider that Damon would go off to Europe to choreograph and then eventually rejoin the house a couple years later and bring all those new skills with him. We'll see once we get into talking about the story for season three.
Ryan Murphy recently said that Pose will ultimately end in 1996 when, as you mentioned, breakthroughs in HIV/AIDS medication were made. Can you tell me about the conversations you had with him about that? Why does that feel like a perfect place to put a period on Pose?
We always conceived the show to be grounded in what is happening culturally and socio-politically for this particular community that is living in New York City. And, so, our approach was never that we were telling a story about ballroom, it was never a story specifically about the plight of LGBTQ people of color. It was always a story about navigating living in New York as a queer or trans person of color, specifically in the ྌs or the ྖs. Looking at that whole arc and how we start that whole story &mdash Blanca finding out that she's HIV-positive and now having to navigate the world as a positive trans woman &mdash the HIV/AIDS cocktail seemed like a great destination. For us, narratively, it feels like the story we've been telling has been working toward that moment of relief. So many lives were saved. The government's response to people living with HIV/AIDS and the response from the medical community was so problematic for so long. That moment felt like such a victory for everyone. And, finally, the community went from just surviving to once again thriving. In terms of the greater story, we've been looking toward that moment of salvation. But now that we're two seasons in, we might get there and ask ourselves, "Is this really where we want to end the show? Or do we have more story to tell?" We've certainly done that with other arcs throughout the show. What's important is that we're open and flexible.
How does this loose idea for an ending impact the way you'll outline future seasons? Does it add pressure or is it more helpful?
I don't know if I would say it adds pressure. To be honest with you, that sense of pressure has always been there, and it's always been something that we've been hyper aware of. We have two of our main characters &mdash Blanca and Pray Tell, who are living as HIV-positive people &mdash and the audience has now fallen in love with those characters. And for us, as storytellers, we don't want to lose those characters and we certainly don't want to lose Mj and Billy as performers. But we also recognize that we have a responsibility to tell the truth. How realistic is it going to be to the audience if our characters are never affected by their statuses? You see that play out in the finale that it happens &mdash people get ill. We've been continuously cautious about how we use that narratively.
How many seasons do you see Pose going for?
When I was pitching Pose, I always envisioned that it would be a five-season show. With that said, could it be a four-season? Could it be a six-season? Sure. It could be more or less. What's really important for all of us &mdash and maybe more specifically for Ryan, Brad and I &mdash is that we felt we told the story that we intended to tell. Once we've hit that point, we'll know that it's time to end it. The thing that we don't want to do is continue to tell stories beyond the story that we intended to tell because a lot of shows do that. And then what winds up happening is that the work suffers, and the audience can mostly always feel it. There's a lack of narrative drive or there isn't that same passion for the narrative. I don't know how much longer it will take for us to get to the conclusion of the story. But we, in the writers' room, will certainly know once we've reached the end and so will our audience.
Interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Source: Hollywood Reporter
Published 10 hour ago on 21 Aug 1919
British broadcaster Channel 4has unveiled its latest programming slate including a Muslim punk comedy, a three-part doc series about Russian President Vladimir Putin and a reality series set within a Namibian tribe.
The shows were announced by Channel 4 at the start of the Edinburgh International Television Festival.
NBCU-backed Working Title Television is making Lady Parts, a six-part comedy about an all female Muslim punk band. From writer/director Nida Manzoor, the half-hour series follows the eponymous band, featuring geeky PHD student and lead guitarist Amina Hussein and fierce and enigmatic front-woman Saira. Saira uses Amina's desperation to find a husband as leverage, offering to hook up dates for her if she agrees to join the band. Amina has never, ever met girls like this before, and soon gets swept up in their joyful anarchic energy. But will she be the key to the band's success? And &ndash will she finally find a husband?
The show, which started as a comedy pilot via C4's Blaps strand, is written and directed by Manzoor. It was commissioned by C4's Head of Comedy Fiona McDermott and Commissioning Executive Laura Riseam. It is exec produced by WTTV's Mark Freeland and Surian Fletcher-Jones.
Manzoor said, “I had such a blast making the C4 Comedy Blap and am so thrilled to have the opportunity to make a full series. The show is so close to my heart and I feel very lucky to be working with the incredible people at Channel 4 and WTTV who have been so supportive and encouraging throughout.“
McDermott added, “Lady Parts promises to be an audacious, celebratory and hilarious new comedy. Nida is a phenomenal talent who had such vision for this show and the women and world she wanted to portray, it was impossible not to succumb to it after the success of the Blap. We're thrilled to be working with her and all at Working Title on scaling it up.“Jacques Witt/SIPA/Shutterstock
On its doc slate, C4 has ordered Putin: A Russian Spy Story from The Gun Shop producer Rogan Productions. The three-part series is set to be a definitive account of Putin's power and how it changed the modern world. Filmed across Russia, America, Europe and the UK, the series will show how Putin brought his knowledge of spy-craft to define the presidency of a nuclear power. Landing 20 years into his rule, this will be the definitive account of Putin's power and how it has changed the modern world.  It will explore how Putin's personal experiences have influenced his politics, how modern Russia has been created through an acute sense of betrayal, pride and anger, and how Putin’s values have been exported around the world &ndash from Crimea to Salisbury to Washington DC.
Told using Putin's own words, by those close to him and by those most impacted by his actions, it will explore Putin's beginnings in 1968, Leningrad, USSR and his role at the KGB as well as his path to power.
Directed by Nick Green, Paul Mitchell is series produer with James Rogan as exec producer. The series was commissioned by C4's Head of Specialist Factual Fatima Salaria.
Salaria said, “This new exciting commission promises to deliver new revelation and insight into a figure who we are all intrigued by. Nick Green, Paul Mitchell and James Rogan will bring intricate storytelling, beautifully assembled archive and fascinating interviews from those who witnessed and lived through these events.”
Rogan added, “To understand what is happening in the world right now, it is necessary to understand Vladimir Putin. Putin has shown his staying power as one of the most formidable politicians of the 21st century. This series will explore how as a former spy he has redefined politics and the impact this has had globally.“Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock
On the reality slate, C4 is taking Gogglebox star Scarlett Moffatt right and her family to spend four weeks with the Himba tribe in a remote Namibian tribal village in The British Tribe Next Door. The four-part series will see the Moffatt's bring all of their home comforts, including running water, electricity, iPhones, hair straighteners and television to the small village of semi-nomadic Himba cattle-herders
In the spirit of the 2007 anthropological series Meet The Natives, it will look at the differences between the two cultures.
The British Tribe Next Door w/t, was commissioned by C4's Head of Factual Entertainment Alf Lawrie. It is a Voltage TV and Motion Content Group co-production and exec produced by Sanjay Singhal and Dominique Walker for Voltage and Melanie Darlaston for Motion Content Group. Series Editor is David Vallance and the Series Director is Christian Watt.
Lawrie said, “For the first time in human history, British suburbia and Himba tribal life will co-exist side-by-side. This series contrasts two worlds on a spectacular scale &ndash but at its heart, is about the extraordinary relationships it creates. Scarlett and the Himba are the perfect foils, both hospitable, curious, friendly &hellip and sharing wicked senses of humour.“
Sanjay Singhal, co-executive Producer for Voltage TV added, &lsquoWe're excited to be making such an ambitious and innovative programme. It feels totally unpredictable and I'm intrigued to know what the Himba and the Moffatts will learn about themselves from taking part.“
Published 11 hour ago on 21 Aug 1919
yA working title, a spinoff of Amazon’s multiple Emmy-winning digital daytime drama series The Bay, is in development from original series creator Gregori J. Martin, former General Hospital showrunner Wendy Riche and producer LANY Entertainment. Principal photography is set to begin next month on the project. A distributor has yet to be locked in.
Co-written by Martin and Riche, the new young adult series follows Frankie and Regan Sanders, played by twins Bianca D'Ambrosio and Chiara D'Ambrosio, who move from a rural area on the Central Coast into a multi-million dollar estate in the sunny, waterfront fictional town of Bay City California. Centering around the high school drama and a new social environment, Frankie and Regan are quickly swept into the cultural awakenings of a sometimes cruel new world.
Martin will co-direct the 10-episode first season with LANY Entertainment partner and The Bay‘s Kristos Andrews, who will also guest star on the new series.
Mike C. Manning Teen Wolf and Lane Davis also are set to appear on the series, which will include crossovers from several cast members of The Bay while also introducing new characters.
The D’Ambrosio twins headlined their own reality show A Day in the Life, and they most recently appeared on Nickelodeon’s Nicky, Ricky, Dicky and Dawn.em>The Bay recently released its fourth season on Amazon Prime Video, and has thus far garnered 15 Daytime Emmy wins in the Digital Daytime Drama Category, with 36 total Emmy nominations. GRB Studios distributes the series internationally.
In addition to The Bay, LANY Entertainment also produced the Daytime Emmy nominated teen series This Just In on Pop TV.
Published 14 hour ago on 21 Aug 1919
In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, NewFilmmakers Los Angeles NFMLA will put the spotlight on the Latinx and Hispanic community this year at their annual festival on September 14 at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Linwood Dunn Theater in Hollywood.
NFMLA has partnered with for their annual NewFilmmakers Los Angeles Film Festival InFocus: Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Festival. The fest will include a lineup of local and international films by world-class emerging filmmakers from Mexico, Brazil, Peru, Spain, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Australia, Canada and the United States across three short film programs.
The day-long event will include a pre-reception where attendees can meet the filmmakers and industry professionals. It will be followed by three film programs that will feature moderators Claudia Puig of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and Rosy Cordero from Entertainment Weekly.
The complete lineup and details about the filmmakers for the program can be read below.
InFocus: Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Shorts Program #1
Argemira &ndash Directed by Bosco da Costa Brazil/Canada US Premiere A visually rich documentary narrating the life of an 85-year-old nun who had to overcome numerous obstacles to achieve her childhood dream.
About the Director – Bosco da Costa is a Brazilian filmmaker born in Recife, Pernambuco. Da Costa studied Law at Faculdade de Direito do Recife but decided to switch careers in order to follow his true passion in life: filmmaking. Da Costa moved to Toronto, Canada in 2017 to study Film and Television at Centennial College.
Taylor and Vanessa &ndash Directed by Christina Santa Cruz USATaylor and Vanessa examine what it means to be in danger.
About the Director – Christina Santa Cruz is a filmmaker and installation artist. She has showcased her work in various festivals and exhibitions, such as Chicago Underground Film Festival, Portland Unknown Film Festival, Norcal Nosiefest, Other Places Art Fair and Sunspots Cinema. Her education includes a bachelor’s degree in Film from the University of Central Florida and a master’s degree in Art and Technology from the California Institute of the Arts.
Insomniac &ndash Directed by Anna Victoria Salinas USAA journey through one sleepless night.
About the Director – Anna is a graduate of UCLA’s MFA program in screenwriting and a 2018 Sundance New Voice Lab Fellow. She’s produced numerous shorts and performs in the all-latina sketch duo John Baxter, whose film Sync has screened the LA Scripted Comedy Festival and the Funny Women Fest.
We Vanish &ndash Directed by Astrid Dominguez Mexico/AustraliaIn a country where violence against women has been normalised, a young mother will put her own life in danger to get legal justice over her daughter’s brutal murder.
About the Director – Astrid is a director and writer from the State of Mexico. Her career began in advertising, directing over seventy commercials. In 2018, she graduated with an MFA in directing at VCA in Melbourne, Australia, where she developed her graduate short film We Vanish/ Las Desaparecidas. Her recent work as a director is focused on female subjectivity, human rights, gender issues.
Something to Believe In Algo en lo Que Creer &ndash Directed by Fany de la Chica USA/SpainWorld Premiere Alba is about to make communion and asks Jesus Christ to kill her sick grandfather.
About the Director – Fany de la Chica is an award-winning filmmaker, singer and educator originally from Andalusia south of Spain and based in Harlem – New York. She studied the MFA in Directing/Screenwriting at Columbia University in New York. Her films have been selected in more than one hundred international film festivals, broadcast on television and awarded. Her work has been published in CINEWOMEN and The Hollywood Reporter. She won a College Emmy Award for her short film “Something to Believe in“ and the New View Award from Glamour Magazinefor her short film “The Looking Ceremony“.
InFocus: Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Shorts Program #2
Thank You for Calling &ndash Directed by Priscila Torres USAWorld PremiereTrapped in a never-ending immigration process, a Salvadoran immigrant makes a snap decision that could put her marriage and future in jeopardy.
About the Director – Priscila Torres was born and raised in El Salvador. In 2013, she earned a BFA in Graphic Design from Universidad Don Bosco in San Salvador, El Salvador. That same year, she was chosen as Robert Redford/Milagro Initiative Unique Voice recipient to study film in Santa Fe, New Mexico. During that time, she also volunteered on multiple occasions for the Sundance Film Festival and The Sundance Labs. She graduated in 2016 with a BFA in Film Production from Santa Fe University of Art & Design, and since then has worked on a number of productions as a production assistant, and as an assistant for Carmen Ejogo on The Girlfriend Experience S2 and Rattlesnake. Her feature screenplay “Undercurrent“ was selected for the Sundance Screenwriters Intensive Macon 2019.
La Casita Rosa &ndash Directed by Elvin Herrera Mexico/USAAn exploration of the humanitarian work done by Las Patronas, group of Mexican women determined to help feed the immigrants riding on top of cargo trains heading north to the U.S.
About the Director – Elvin Herrera is a documentarian and video editor. He received his B.A. in Cinema and Television Arts from California State University Northridge CSUN in 2015 and a M.F.A. in Film and Television from Mount Saint Mary’s University in 2017. Herrera has worked in post-production for the National Association of Latino Independent Producers, Spotify, and Compathos TV.
This happened to you? Esto Le Paso a Usted &ndash Directed by Ana Maria Estrada PeruAn elderly couple coming back to their country thirty years after emigrating discovers how much everything has changed and how vulnerable they are.
About the Director – Peruvian by birth, Ana Maria Estrada currently resides between the cities of New York, Lima and Miami, which allows her to work on various artistic projects. Her love for the performing arts started at an early age and she decided to polish her talents by studying acting in New York, Los Angeles, and London. She also studied film at the prestigious New York Film Academy.
Finding Shelter &ndash Directed by Marissa Chibas USAThis documentary captures the stories of several unaccompanied minors seeking refuge in the United States and how their real-life experiences were made in to the 2016 internationally acclaimed play.
About the Director – Marissa Chibas is a writer, performer, filmmaker. Her solo show Daughter of a Cuban Revolutionary, has toured the U.S., Europe, and Mexico. Her silent film/performance piece, Clara's Los Angeles, was presented at REDCAT's NOW festival and the San Diego Latino Film Festival. She conceived and wrote the play Shelter, which premiered in Lincoln Park and was presented at the Kennedy Center and has been made into a documentary, Finding Shelter.
Processing Station &ndash Directed by Rodrigo Espinosa USAWhen an optimistic man gets run over and dies, he finds the afterlife is run like the DMV, and a religion-based written test will determine his fate.
About the Director – Rodrigo is a Mexican director focused on comedy. He lives and works in Los Angeles.
InFocus: Latinx & Hispanic Cinema Shorts Program #3
Kiss Me Malibu &ndash Directed by Mikel Arraiz SpainA horror-comedy music video about the insecurities and overthinking that TV shows, religion, culture and belief systems create in us during male-female relationships and in courtship.
About the Director – Mikel Arraiz is a director and editor who studied Telecommunications at Public University of Navarre UPNA. He has created several music videos for Spanish bands, broadcast on MTV, and has written four scripts, which earned him several awards.
And The Brave Shall Rise &ndash Directed by Adam Schlachter USACindy Polo, stay-at-home mom and social activist, runs for office after the Parkland high school massacre to help inspire change in the Florida Legislature.
About the Director – Born in Puerto Rico and raised in Miami, Adam Schlachter graduated with an MFA in Directing from AFI, completed a Screenwriting Certificate at UCLA, and earned a BFA in Production from FSU. His thesis, “My Backyard Was A Mountain”, qualified for the Oscars, won an Imagen Award, earned grants from Kodak and Panavision, and screened at over two hundred film festivals. Adam was selected for the CBS Directing Initiative, the NBC-Universal Writers Showcase, the WGA IWC, the HSF/McNamara Arts Grant, the Caucus Foundation Grant, and the MMPA Diversity Scholarship. He is in post-production on a feature, “Hair In A Bag“.
Caminante, Caminante: La Leyenda del Huay Chivo &ndash Directed by Luis Quijano Mexico/USAIn a rural village in Yucatan, Mexico, two young missionaries in search of the town’s religious conversion go against the people’s beliefs and awaken a monster from a folk legend.
About the Director – Luis Quijano is a Mexican filmmaker born and raised in Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico. At the age of 18, he moved to Mexico City, to study “Media and Communication“ where he made his first short film “Me Gusta Más Crudo“ with two fellow students. In 2015, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in filmmaking, where he studied at the New York Film Academy in Burbank, CA and graduated in 2018. His latest project, the horror short film “Caminante, Caminante: La Leyenda del Huay Chivo“ is rounding up at film festivals around the world. Meanwhile, he is developing two feature films: “Caminante, Caminante“, based on this short film, and “Esto es lo que Somos“, a cannibal horror road film.
Until Dawn Comes &ndash Directed by Aaron Acuna Costa RicaAn unexpected message from the past makes Carmen get off a bus and rush to the city to sing a song to an old lover. With the reluctant help of her sister, she will embark looking for the pieces of her past she thought were behind her.
About the Director – Aaron earned a degree in Film and TV from Veritas Film School, a Bachelor’s in Psychology from University of Costa Rica and a Web Development Associate’s from CENFOTEC. Aaron has experience in filmmaking, producing, screenwriting and editing. He has directed and written 3 Award winning short films and produced several feature documentaries.
A Low-Budget Film &ndash Directed by Paulo Leierer Brazil West Coast Premiere A mixture of corporate film, archive footage, documentary and making of, the film is an attempt of the scientists from the “Brazilian Institute of Alternative and Secondary Importance Research” to fight the lack of funding, the closure of the institute and to keep their dreams alive.
About the Director – Paulo Leierer is a Brazilian director and scriptwriter who works developing and writing projects, especially comedies, with major Brazilian production companies. He directed a comedy series screened on Comedy Central and Netflix and has had short films screened at festivals such as the São Paulo International Film Festival, the Durban International Film Festival, Hanover International Film Festival, Bogotá Short Film Festival Oscar Qualifying and more.