Tag Archives: Sean

Back in Cannes, actor Sean Penn directs again, along with daughter Dylan

He premiered in Cannes his latest film, “Flag Day,” in which he also co-stars. The lead, though, belongs to Penn’s 30-year-old daughter, Dylan Penn.

Sean Penn has been to the Cannes Film Festival about a dozen times — from bumming around with Robert De Niro in 1984 to presiding over the jury.

But his last visit was rocky. Penn’s film, 2016’s “The Last Face,” flopped with critics in way that would make some filmmakers gun shy about returning.

Penn, though, didn’t hesitate. On Saturday night, he premiered in Cannes his latest film, “Flag Day,” in which he also co-stars.

A few hours before walking down the red carpet, Penn sat comfortably in a hotel bar, excited to be back. The festival is the greatest in the world, he said. “Everyone knows it’s the big game.”

And it’s a game Penn welcomes. Cannes is worth it, even if he takes a few lumps. 

“The bad stuff, these days, I’ve been on such extreme ends on that. It’s like: whatever,” says Penn. “The thing is: I am confident that I know as much — more –about acting than almost any of these critics. And I’m very confident in the performance I’m most concerned about.”

With that, Penn raises his hand and points toward where his daughter, Dylan Penn, is sitting. Dylan, 30, is the star of “Flag Day.” She has dabbled before in acting but it’s easily her biggest role yet. In the film, adapted from Jennifer Vogel’s 2005 memoir “Flim-Flam Man: The True Story of My Father’s Counterfeit Life,” she plays Jennifer Vogel, the journalist daughter of a swindler and counterfeiter (played by Penn). 

Her father’s confidence isn’t misplaced. Dylan is natural, poised and captivating. She looks a veteran, already, which might be expected of the child of Penn and Robin Wright. And those critics? Variety said the film “reveals Dylan Penn to be a major actor.”

But for a long time, Dylan never wanted the spotlight. 

“Growing up, being surrounded by actors and being on set, it was really something that didn’t interest me at all,” Dylan says. “I always thought, and still think, my passion lies in working behind the camera. But as soon as I expressed wanting to do that kind of thing, both of my parents said separately: You won’t be a good director if you don’t know what it’s like to be in the actor’s shoes.”

Dylan is stepping forward in movies the same time her father is withdrawing. Penn, 60, is in the midst of shooting Sam Esmail’s Watergate series for Starz, with Julia Roberts. But he has recently pulled further away from Hollywood. Penn devotes more time to Community Organized Relief Effort (CORE), the nonprofit he started after the 2010 earthquake to help Haitians. Haiti has this week again plunged into crisis after the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, a situation Penn calls heartbreaking. 

“These people have been working so hard to bring their country up and this kind of horrible violence, cynicism — whatever my suspicions the motivation was,” he says. “I’m glad that our teams are safe for the moment, but it’s horrible.”

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During the pandemic, CORE has erected testing and vaccination sites, including one at Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium, and dispensed millions of shots. In movies, Penn still has a pair of upcoming roles he says he promised to do years earlier. But beyond that?

“Then I just don’t know. I’d be very surprised. I don’t think I would start a movie without knowing if it was going to be a movie. And I don’t think I’d direct something that wasn’t a movie unless it was on the Broadway stage,” he says, and then smiles. “There’s a simpler way of saying that: I’m not interested in directing for the small screen.”

Penn is increasingly at odds with Hollywood’s dominant priorities. He’s never made a franchise film. He laments Marvel movies and “how much it’s taken up the space and claimed so much time in the careers of so many talented people.” He misses cinema that isn’t “just razzle-dazzle, Cirque de Soleil movies.” 

So-called “cancel culture,” he has issues with, too. Arguing that today he wouldn’t be allowed to play gay icon Harvey Milk (2008’s “Milk”), Penn recently said that soon only Danish princes will play Hamlet. 

But his biggest gripe may be with the onset of direct-to-streaming film releases. “The way I’ve always put it is: It’s not the girl I fell in love with,” Penn says. 

MGM will release “Flag Day” theatrically Aug. 13; Penn considers himself “lucky to have a movie that’s going to be a movie.” But it took years to reach this stage. Dylan first read the book when her father optioned it when she was 15. Many possible iterations followed — Penn didn’t initially plan to direct — but the prospect of doing the film with Dylan was appealing. 

“I have always thought if she wanted to do it, I’d encourage it,” Penn says. 

For Dylan, the father-daughter relationship of “Flag Day” — Jennifer tries to help and stabilize her scamming father but also inherits some of his more destructive, conman habits — is a half-reflection of their own bond together. 

“She always strived to have this really honest, transparent relationship with her father which she never got it in return,” Dylan Penn says. “I’ve tried to have that with my dad and got it in return.” 

“It made us a lot closer than we’ve ever been,” she adds. “Of course, there were times when I talked back or had an attitude, but it was like: You can’t. This is your boss. This is work. This is not your dad right now.”

Dylan grants the experience was so satisfying that she’d like to continue acting. Her dad, she feels, may be “passing the torch a little bit,” she says. Hopper Jack Penn, her younger brother, also co-stars in the film. The rest of the cast is more veteran, including Josh Brolin and Regina King. Original songs by Cat Power, Eddie Vedder and Glen Hansard contribute to the score.

But the most vibrant parts of “Flag Day” are the scenes between Dylan and her dad. 

“Dylan is — and I can say this in equal parts for my feeling about her as a person and as an actress — as uncontrived as it gets,” Penn says. “That’s a great quality to play off of.”

Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP

Sean Bean's outrage over Daniel Craig snub by James Bond fans: 'It's pathetic'

The 62-year-old stunned viewers with his commanding role in the new BBC One drama Time, with critics hailing the three-part show as a five-star winner. The proud Yorkshireman stars opposite acclaimed actor Stephen Graham, who described Time as a “difficult to watch” masterpiece created by Jimmy McGovern. Bean remains one of the nation’s most loved actors, and has been adored by generations of viewers – thanks to his performances in films such as The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, and TV hits Game of Thrones and Sharpe.

But one of his standout performances came in the 1995 James Bond classic GoldenEye, which saw him play villain Alec Trevelyan.

Trevelyan is initially a 00 agent, and Bond’s close friend, until he fakes his own death and establishes the Janus crime syndicate before his untimely demise at the hands of Pierce Brosnan’s 007.

Bean himself was reportedly close to being considered to become Bond himself in 1987, before the role ultimately went to Welshman Timothy Dalton, who starred in The Living Daylights and License to Kill before Brosnan took over.

Producers were so impressed with the Sheffield-born legend, however, he was given the role of Bond’s nemesis.

Having worked on Bond itself, Bean is routinely asked questions about the franchise and how it has maintained its appeal after more than 20 films.

But one issue that irked Bean was the criticism that was aimed towards Brosnan’s successor Daniel Craig.

When Craig was announced as the new Bond in 2005, critics were furious that a blond-haired man had been given the role, with the secret agent known for his trademark jet black hair.

JUST IN: Time on BBC creator Jimmy McGovern opens up about criminal past

Websites such as blondnotbond.com and danielcraigisnotbond.com were set up to attack the producers’ decision, with even national newspapers describing the choice as “bland”.

Bean however told Digital Spy in 2012: “I think Craig is brilliant as Bond. I remember in the beginning they were all saying, ‘He won’t work’, and I thought you, ‘You watch’ – and he did because he’s a good actor.”

Bean was then asked about the backlash Craig received prior to the role, and he replied: “I think it’s pathetic. You don’t even know what he’s like.

“I’d worked with him, so I know what he’s like and I know he’s good, so I was particularly pleased when he got [the role].”

Time viewers stunned by ‘grim’ BBC crime drama [ANALYSIS]
Time BBC One: When does the Sean Bean drama air? [INSIGHT]
Time star Stephen Graham details ‘phenomenal’ scenes with wife [LATEST]

Craig himself spoke about the impact it had on him, and he told GQ in 2020: “I remember saying to my mum, ‘Can I play James Bond?’

“And she was like, ‘Of course you can. But I am your mother.’”

Reflecting on the new show Time, Graham told RadioTimes.com how he “loved the fact that stuff I do is difficult to watch for people”.

Comparing the new show with period drama Bridgerton, Graham continued: “That’s not difficult to watch.

“So why is this difficult to watch? I think this is difficult to watch because it’s coming into your living room.

“As Jimmy said, ‘we need to look at the penal system…’

“[The series is] putting a mirror to society and going, ‘Not sure if we’re getting this right.’ So maybe that’s why it’s difficult to watch, because it makes you think.”

Time is available on BBC iPlayer, with episodes on BBC One on Sunday nights from 9pm.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed

Sean Connery's younger brother Neil dies from illness just seven months after Bond star

Neil Connery has died aged 82, just seven months after his brother Sean Connery’s death. The news was announced by his friend Steve Begg, who said: “He looked and sounded like his big bro.” He added on Facebook: “My good friend and Edinburgh drinking buddy Neil Connery passed away early this morning, I am sad to report.
“He considered me a lackluster challenge when it came to the drinking stakes but I considered him with respect.

“He looked and sounded like his big bro so going out with him was always interesting to say the least. Miss you Neil.”

Sean’s sibling made his film debut in the 1967 film O.K. Connery, a James Bond-inspired movie.

The film was retitled Operation Kid Brother in America and is also known as Operation Double 007.

READ MORE: Jack Whitehall sparks huge divide as Brit Awards host muted

Neil’s wife previously discussed how upset he was that he couldn’t visit Sean before he died last year.

According to the Daily Mail online, she said: “He’s just very upset at losing his only brother.

“’He would’ve gone but, of course, given the times we’re in, nobody can travel anywhere for any reason so that’s upsetting too.”

Sean died peacefully in his sleep aged 90, after being “unwell for some time,” his son Jason said.

He added: “We are all working at understanding this huge event as it only happened so recently, even though my dad has been unwell for some time.

“A sad day for all who knew and loved my dad and a sad loss for all people around the world who enjoyed the wonderful gift he had as an actor.”

The late actor was best known for his portrayal of James Bond, appearing in seven of the spy thrillers.

He also starred in The Hunt for Red October, Highlander, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and The Rock.

The actor, also a father-of-two, was married to Micheline Roquebrune up until his death.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed

John Lennon estate and Sean Lennon celebrate Julian Lennon's birthday with childhood snaps

Sean wrote: “Happy Birthday Julian! (Hard to believe that thing on a wall is what we used to call a ‘telephone.’)

John and Yoko’s son was referring to the wired landline phone in the top right of the picture.

Julian was clearly touched by these posts, plus messages from fans, as he posted: “Thank You for your lovely Birthday wishes!”

Last October, John’s sons took part in a special BBC Radio 2 show featuring Sir Elton John and Sir Paul McCartney to celebrate what would have been the late singer’s 80th birthday.

James Bond: Sean Connery’s 007 movies had an influence on WandaVision

Last week saw the conclusion of Marvel Studios’ WandaVision on Disney+. While fans only have to wait until next week for The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, today saw documentary Assembled: The Making of WandaVision drop on the streaming service. During the behind-the-scenes interviews, it was revealed that Sir Sean Connery’s James Bond movies had an influence on WandaVision’s 1960s sitcom setting.
Oscar-winning songwriting couple Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, who co-wrote Frozen’s songs, were tasked with composing the WandaVision jingle and all six sitcom era opening themes from the 1950s to the present day.

The duo said how they wanted to sign up for the ambitious project straight away and began planning how to get the right sound for each decade.

They said: “You look at the influences of the period and the instrumentation of the period and the language of the period.”

The pair would have a half an hour call with the showrunners for each sitcom era but doubled up for the Fifties and Sixties.

READ MORE: Black Panther: ‘It’s James Bond crossed with The Godfather’ says producer

The songwriters would talk about their favourites from each period and what they were really drawn to, which became the things that they then tried to emulate the most.

Kristen and Robert said they felt confident with the Fifties but had to really think about the Sixties.

They said: “All agreed that Bewitched, in particular, was a thing, but we also looked at the James Bond movies, we looked at Burt Bacharach.

“Whatever was going on with the pop culture of that time making sure to reference the bebop jazz and Swinging Sixties culture.”

No doubt they had a good look at the background music in Connery’s first five Bond movies from Dr No to You Only Live Twice.

Black Panther producer Nate Moore reiterated Coogler’s feelings of Bond’s impact on the movie.

According to Screen Rant, he said: “This is going to sound crazy, but we’ve always thought of Black Panther as a James Bond kind of movie, right? Sort of this big globetrotting epic.”

But when talking with Coogler, one of the ideas he also liked was this sort of Godfather-kind of story. 

Moore added: “When I say Godfather, it’s the idea that it’s very much a story about family and a story about an organisation where new leadership is taking place.”

Moore continued: “And much like the Godfather, you have to fight for things, right? And they’re all vying for power and in this case, it’s power over Wakanda. I think Killmonger sees Wakanda as something that could be used differently than it currently is in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and that puts him directly at odds with T’Challa.”

“You get to go around the world a little bit. We thought that was important. Again, sort of in our James Bond comparison we wanted it to feel like it did have some scope and wasn’t just a movie that was set in Wakanda.

“Not that Wakanda isn’t fascinating and not that we couldn’t explore that forever, but it did want to feel like a movie that had ramifications beyond the borders. So you do get to be outside of the country as well as explore the country.”

WandaVision is streaming now on Disney+, while Black Panther 2 is set for a summer 2022 release.