Jul 16
2019

Multi award winning actress, Dame, legend – Grazia’s Joely Walker sat down with the inimitable Helen Mirren to talk diversity, Instagram and the ‘anti-ageing’ lingo she wishes would kindly jog one…

It’s the final day of the 72nd Cannes Film Festival and in a suite in the Hotel Martinez (where the A-list flock annually), we’re setting up for the arrival of a bona fide British legend – an actress with over five decades experience, 70-plus films under her belt and one of the few Brits to ever scoop up the elusive Triple Crown of Acting (winning an Academy Award, Emmy Award and Tony Award). But to everyone’s surprise (because, in this industry, being fashionably late is wholly expected), L’Oreal Paris Ambassador Dame Helen Mirren arrives on time and with little kerfuffle – no entourage in tow scribbling down convoluted coffee orders, no bodyguards sweeping the styling rail. Instead, just one manager and a laid-back outfit – her hands slouched casually in the pockets of her black Adidas tracksuit bottoms. All-in-all, an oddly serene set up for one of the most iconic British women in film – a testament to her no-fuss, no-fluff attitude. Indeed, fluff is something Helen simply cannot abide, especially when it comes to the cosmetics industry and the way, for decades, women were addressed with scaremongering terminology like the outdated ‘anti-ageing’ rhetoric. ‘How can a product be “anti-ageing”?’ questions Helen. ‘That’s like saying I’m anti-sun, well the sun is going to rise, “Well no, I’m anti it.” But thankfully – with the likes of Helen and many others speaking up on the subject, as well as brands taking note of changing customer expectation – the lingo has shifted as part of a wider sea change in the sector. ‘All of these fences have been slowly broken down. And I think what L’Oreal [Paris] have done is they’ve truly embraced it. They’ve incorporated different ages and genders, they’ve incorporated race, they’ve incorporated disabilities. A diverse, realistic representation of people – an authentic selection of who we all are. It’s why I’m proud to be an Ambassador.’ The complete artice can be read over at Grazia UK.

Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Articles & Scans – Grazia (United Kingdom, July 22, 2019)
Photo Gallery – Editorial Photography – 2019 – Session 05

Jul 15
2019

Helen’s second installment in the Fast & Furious franchise – the Rock/Statham spin-off “Hobbs & Shaw” – will release theaters August 2. Her character’s name has received an add-on, the Shaw family matriarch is now known as Magdalene “Queeny” Shaw. There you go. Univeral Pictures is starting the film’s promotion this weekend with its Los Angeles premiere (which Helen didn’t attend) and a first batch of video clips, including an on-set interview with Helen and the b-roll, in which she is seen thanking director David Leitch after wrapping her scenes and demanding “more stunts” for the next time. As much as we know there will be a next time next year, when Helen will reprise her role in the ninth “Fast & Furious”. You can find both the b-roll and on-set interview below and in the video archive, as well as screencaptures in the photo gallery.

Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Career – Hobbs & Shaw – B-roll screencaptures
Photo Gallery – Career – Hobbs & Shaw – On-Set interview screencaptures

Jun 27
2019

Warner Bros. UK has launched the first theatrical trailer for Bill Condon’s “The Good Liar”. The New Line Cinema drama pairs Oscar winner Helen Mirren and two-time Oscar nominee Ian McKellen on the big screen for the first time. Bill Condon, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of “Gods and Monsters,” directed and produced the film from a screenplay by Jeffrey Hatcher (“Mr. Holmes”), based on the widely acclaimed novel by Nicholas Searle. Career con artist Roy Courtnay (McKellen) can hardly believe his luck when he meets well-to-do widow Betty McLeish (Mirren) online. As Betty opens her home and life to him, Roy is surprised to find himself caring about her, turning what should be a cut-and-dry swindle into the most treacherous tightrope walk of his life. “The Good Liar” also stars Russell Tovey and Jim Carter. Greg Yolen also served as producer, alongside Condon. The executive producers were Richard Brener, Andrea Johnston, Aaron L. Gilbert, Jason Cloth, Anjay Nagpal, Jack Morrissey, and Nick O’Hagan. The creative filmmaking team included director of photography Tobias Schliessler, production designer John Stevenson, editor Virginia Katz, and costume designer Keith Madden. The music is composed by two-time Oscar nominee Carter Burwell. “The Good Liar” was filmed on location in London and Berlin. It opens in theatres on Friday, November 15, 2019. The film will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.


Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Career – The Good Liar – Trailer screencaptures

Jun 27
2019

Courtesy Yahoo!: “The Talented Mr Ripley with OAPs” – That’s quite some pitch for a movie, but it’s basically the premise at the heart of The Good Liar, Warner Bros.’ upcoming adaptation of the best-selling thriller by Nicholas Searle. As you can see in the newly-launched first trailer (watch it below), it stars Sir Ian McKellen and Dame Helen Mirren, the former an octogenarian conman called Roy who meets wealthy widow Betty (Mirren) on a dating website and sets about stealing her nest egg. And as director Bill Condon (Beauty and the Beast) explains, it includes a cinema first. “They’d never worked together in the movies before,” he says of the two legends. “I’d seen them on stage together about 15 years or longer ago [it was actually 2002 in Strindberg’s Dance of Death]. And [this movie] felt like an opportunity to bring an ideal pairing to the screen.” “[The film] definitely plays off the lifetime iconography we have for these two great actors.” Of course Condon, who worked with McKellen on his breakthrough as director Gods and Monsters (1998) and again in 2015’s Mr. Holmes, knows the actor’s process well, but notes Mirren’s is completely different. “Ian is all rehearsal and talk and talk and talk,” he explains. “Helen likes a little bit of that and then for her it’s about the magic of what happens in the moment. She really likes to keep it spontaneous.”. The complete article can be read over at Yahoo! The film’s poster, as well as new stills and an on-set picture, have been added to the photo gallery.

Related Media:

Photo Gallery – Career – The Good Liar – Production Stills
Photo Gallery – Career – The Good Liar – On-Set Pictures
Photo Gallery – Career – The Good Liar – Posters & Key-Art

Jun 21
2019

“Anna”, Luc Besson’s action thriller starring Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Cillian Murphy and Luke Evans, releases select theaters today to almost no promotion, premiere or any kind of buzz, except some disappointing reviews. Most articles on the film touch the matter of the recent accusations against Besson and how it hurts the markability and mainstream effect of the film. A collection of reviews can be found below. The photo updates above are accompanied by more clips from the film – international trailers, television spots, a clip and an on-set interview with Helen.

The New York Times, Bilge Ebiri (June 21, 2019)
“Anna” is entertainingly put together, but it might be hard to be entertained by it. Last year, the director was accused by a number of women of sexual assault, which he has denied. It’s hard not to be reminded of such matters when watching a film that often turns on seduction and shifting power dynamics in male-female relations. “Anna” can’t live in a vacuum.

Variety, Peter Debruge (June 21, 2019)
Will anything in “Anna” take audiences by surprise? Nothing so much as the fact that such a broadly appealing mainstream thrill ride should be released so unceremoniously as this, almost as if it were being done to fulfill contractual obligations. It’s nowhere near the embarrassment of Brian De Palma’s “Domino,” or any number of recent studio tentpoles. Nor is it fresh enough to pretend that audiences had missed out on something special if it had been buried altogether — except perhaps for Luss, who’s bound to get another shot.

RogerEbert.com, Peter Sobczynski (June 21, 2019)
Helen Mirren, evidently using this film as an audition reel for the role of Edna in the inevitable live-action remake of “The Incredibles.” “Anna” is so aimless and listless that you can hardly believe that he was even on the set for the majority of its production. All he has to offer here is the aforementioned two decent action scenes, some interesting underwear and a Helen Mirren performance that is mildly amusing, though it will not take up too much time in any future Lifetime Achievement highlight reels.

The Hollywood Reporter, John DeFore (June 20, 2019)
Helen Mirren, the film’s first spark of life. Cillian Murphy is as jarring in his role as Mirren — they’re too lively and intelligent to play the film’s color-by-numbers game, and look like they might be working an angle: What if they just keep being the only people worth watching until Besson decides to pivot, making this a Tinker, Tailor-style game of string-pulling spymasters? No such luck.

The Los Angeles Times, Noel Murray (June 20, 2019)
“Anna”’s underlying themes just don’t resonate as they’re meant to. The film falters when it tries to be an aspirational tale, about a woman tired of being shuffled from one “grey box” to another (from a pauper’s apartment to a military academy to a cramped models’ condo), and who’s exhausted by the piggish fashion photographers and demanding spy-masters who dominate her days.

The Toronto Star, Peter Howell (June 20, 2019)
Olga, played by Helen Mirren, is one sharp shot of vodka. She lights her cigarettes with a grenade-shaped lighter and tells a story of having once walked for three days in the woods with a wolf trap attached to her leg. “Trouble never sends a warning,” she advises Anna. Olga functions as both a serious figure of menace and comic relief. Mirren sheathes her character’s intentions behind a granite visage that suggests what Fran Lebowitz would look like as a Bond villain. Dark humour ripples through Besson’s jigsaw screenplay. Spy fans will be amused at one discussion about how best to cut off a hapless victim’s finger, to avoid casting suspicion of CIA involvement.