London, Nov 25 (AP/UNB) — Nicolas Roeg, a director of provocative and otherworldly films who gave Mick Jagger and David Bowie enduring screen roles, has died. He was 90.
The British director of "Don't Look Now" and many other films died Friday night, his son, Nicolas Roeg Jr., told Britain's Press Association.
"He was a genuine dad," Roeg Jr. said Saturday. "He just had his 90th birthday in August."
He didn't provide details about his father's death during a brief telephone call with the association.
During the 1970s, Roeg sent Jenny Agutter and his son Luc Roeg on the Australian Outback odyssey "Walkabout;" gave Jagger a big-screen role in the thriller "Performance," which was co-directed with Donald Cammell; and plunged Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland into psychological horror in the Venice-set "Don't Look Now."
"Don't Look Now" became famous for its realistic depiction of sex. Roeg said later that rumors the sex had been real were "very flattering" because that meant people felt the film was authentic.
Sutherland said Roeg was "a fearless visionary."
"He was a liberating joy to work for," Sutherland said in a statement. "I fell in love with him then and will love him forever."
In "The Man Who Fell to Earth," Roeg directed Bowie — perfectly cast and sublimely strange — as an alien who crashes on Earth looking for a way to save his own planet.
Bowie's son, filmmaker Duncan Jones, wrote on Twitter: "Just heard another great storyteller, the inimitable Nicolas Roeg left us today. What an incredible body of work he's left us with!"
Roeg's later films include the intellectually playful "Insignificance," in which Albert Einstein matched wits with Marilyn Monroe. His last major film was "The Witches," in 1990, a Roald Dahl adaptation which starred Anjelica Huston.
The British Film Institute has named "Don't Look Now" and "Performance" as two of the greatest films in Britain's Top 100 film poll.
The institute paid tribute to Roeg in a tweet: "RIP to Nicolas Roeg, a pioneering force of cinema who created some of the most affecting moments of beauty, terror and sadness ever seen. A true great if ever there was one."
Born in London in 1928, Roeg worked his way into directing after winning acclaim as a cinematographer. He began his career as an editing apprentice in 1947 — among his duties was serving tea.
Roeg worked on major films including "Lawrence of Arabia" and "Fahrenheit 451" before he entered the directing ranks in 1970.
He said he couldn't understand how someone could become a director without first working in cinematography.
Roeg didn't believe in meticulous planning when it came to scripts and shooting schedules, preferring to give himself room to maneuver and improvise as needed. He was fond of saying that God laughed at people who made too many elaborate plans.
"I shoot a lot of stuff," he once said in an interview for the book "Talking Movies." ''I think that's probably come from not having gone to film school. Things work themselves out. You've lost the showmanship thing, the fairground barker, come-see-what's-inside aspect of filmmaking when you try to plan everything for the audience."
Roeg was married three times and had six children.
Florida, Nov 18 (AP/UNB) — "Star Wars" fans will soon be able to pilot the Millennium Falcon and face off against Kylo Ren in battle.
Disney on Saturday announced some details of the new "Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge" lands, opening in 2019. It also announced that composer John Williams, creator of the classic "Star Wars" themes, is writing new music for the "Galaxy's Edge" attractions, and shared a sneak preview.
The two signature attractions of the "lands" now under construction will be "Millennium Falcon: Smuggler's Run," in which guests can take the controls in three different roles, and "Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance," offering an "epic battle" between the First Order and the Resistance.
The attractions are to open at Disneyland Resort in summer 2019 and at Walt Disney World Resort in the fall.
Los Angeles, Nov 14 (AP/UNB) — The eighth and last season of "Game of Thrones" finally has a date with destiny.
HBO said Tuesday that the series will return in April 2019 with six episodes to conclude its run.
The fantasy series based on the George R.R. Martin novels has been one of HBO's most successful shows.
A video touting the show's return next year included clips from seasons past showing both living and dead competitors for the crown of Westeros but didn't give a taste of the final episodes.
HBO isn't getting out of the "Game of Thrones" business. A prequel created by Martin and writer-producer Jane Goldman is underway, with Naomi Watts set to star, and other spinoffs are possible.
Islamabad, Oct 28(AP/UNB) — Pakistan's top court has reinstated a ban on the broadcast of Indian TV content following a petition from local producers.
Pakistan's Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar announced the verdict Saturday, overturning a lower court ruling last year that had lifted the 2016 ban on airing Indian content on TV or FM radio. The regulatory body for electronic media says the court's order was implemented immediately.
Earlier this year, India banned performances by Pakistani artists, and some Indian stations have stopped airing Pakistani content. Indian producers have called for a comprehensive ban on Pakistani content, and Hindu extremists have threatened to attack cinemas showing films featuring Pakistani artists.
India and Pakistan, two nuclear-armed rivals, have fought three wars since gaining independence from British rule in 1947.
Washington, 22 Oct (AP/UNB) — After a 35-year acting career and with two iconic television characters to her name — Elaine Benes of "Seinfeld" and foul-mouthed Vice-President Selina Meyer — Julia Louis-Dreyfus has been honored with the Mark Twain Prize for lifetime achievement in comedy.
On Sunday night at Washington's Kennedy Center, the 57-year-old actress received a stream of testimonials from celebrities including Jerry Seinfeld, Stephen Colbert and 2010 Mark Twain recipient Tina Fey--touching on the multiple aspects of her career.
Fey paid tribute to Louis-Dreyfus at the award ceremony by tracking the similarities between their lives.
"We both started comedy in Chicago. We both moved on to 'Saturday Night Live.' We both lost our virginity to Brad Hall," referring to Louis-Dreyfus' husband and former SNL castmate sitting next to the honoree. Fey praised the "secret precision" of Louis-Dreyfus' comedy and her willingness to make her Seinfeld character so flawed.
"Julia let Elaine be selfish and petty and sarcastic and a terrible, terrible dancer," Fey said. "Julia's never been afraid to be unlikable--not on screen and not in person."
Louis-Dreyfus is the 21st Mark Twain recipient, joining a list that includes Richard Pryor, George Carlin and Carol Burnett. Bill Cosby, the winner in 2009, had his award rescinded earlier this year after he was convicted of three counts of aggravated indecent assault.
During last year's ceremony to honor David Letterman, Cosby's name was never mentioned. But this year, two of the performers felt comfortable making Cosby jokes. Late night host Stephen Colbert displayed a sign proclaiming, "167 days since the last Un-Twaining."
With his fingers crossed, he told Louis-Dreyfus, "I think you'll be OK."
Later Keegan-Michael Key come onstage, dressed as Mark Twain himself and proceeded to roast many of the previous award recipients. When a picture of Cosby was briefly shown, Michael-Key quickly moved things along and said, "It's OK, he's not watching," then added that he doubted PBS was a popular channel "in the penitentiary."
Seinfeld, while on the red carpet before the ceremony, recalled first meeting Louis-Dreyfus during an informal audition. His iconic sitcom, "Seinfeld," was still in the planning stages and producer Larry David knew Louis-Dreyfus from their time together on "Saturday Night Live."
"We had just two short pages of script, and we sat down to read the dialogue together," Seinfeld said. "As soon as she opened her mouth, I knew she was the one."
Seinfeld also credited Louis-Dreyfus for having the confidence and strength of personality to hold her own on what he called "a very male show."
That confidence was evident very early for Louis-Dreyfus, who said she knew as a young child that she had a gift for comedy.
"The first time I really knew was when I stuffed raisins in my nose and my mother laughed. I ended up in the emergency room because they wouldn't come out!" Louis-Dreyfus said before the ceremony.
Comedian Kumail Nanjiani grew up in Pakistan and never saw an episode of "Seinfeld" until he immigrated to the U.S as an adult.
"But I became a huge fan as soon as I moved here," he said.
The co-writer of the movie "The Big Sick" particularly recalls her iconic, slightly convulsive "Elaine Benes dance" on the show, which he credits to Louis-Dreyfus' gift for physical comedy.
"There are some comedians who think physical comedy is beneath them," he said. "But she was just fearless and ego-less."
At the end of the night, Louis-Dreyfus accepted her award with an extended comedic bit and a few shots at new Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
The veteran comedic actress first drew laughs by repeatedly referencing her true life's ambition to be a respected dramatic actress_stopping in mid-speech to deliver a monologue from Shakespeare's "Merchant of Venice."
A native of the Washington suburbs in Maryland, Louis-Dreyfus is a graduate of the elite Holton-Arms school, alma mater of Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Kavanaugh of assaulting her at a high school party.
Louis-Dreyfus make a veiled but unmistakable reference to Ford's testimony_framing it around her performance a high school presentation of the play "Serendipity."
"I can remember every single aspect of that play that night, so much so that I would testify under oath about it," she said, to a round of laughter and applause. "But I can't remember who drove me there or who drove me home."
Louis-Dreyfus emerged from Chicago's famed Second City comedy troupe before joining the cast of "Saturday Night Live." Her best-known role is her nine-year run as Elaine Benes on "Seinfeld." More recently, her work as Vice President Selina Meyer on "Veep" earned her six consecutive Emmy Awards.
Production on the upcoming seventh and final season of "Veep" was delayed as Louis-Dreyfus received treatment for breast cancer. That season is currently in production.
PBS will air the Twain event on Nov. 19.