31st October 2007
Gay philanthropist leaves masterpieces to the nation
4:05 PM — The late Simon Sainsbury, a reclusive member of the supermarket dynasty, has bequeathed 18 works of art worth an estimated £100m to the National and Tate galleries.His bequest is the most generous gift to the nation in recent times.The National Gallery, where Sir Simon funded the much-admired Sainsbury Wing with his brothers, is to receive five works by Monet, Degas, Gauguin and Rousseau.
Gay themes at the Jewish Film Festival
4:05 PM — The UK Jewish Film Festival in its 11th year is presenting an eclectic range of films this season, including several that are concerned with Jewish-gay issues and perspectives.Screenings of 43 films, 25 of which are UK premieres, will open in cinemas all over London this November, and a new "on tour" initiative will be bringing the films to cinemas across the UK from January to March.
30th October 2007
Interview: Pam Ann, A-List air hostess to the stars 1
5:51 PM — "Come Fly With Me is my first ever DVD. I guess you could say that it was a classic show!" says Pam Ann. "So if you like me, you ought to like it. I'm really happy with it."Oh, and there are extras, so even if you've seen the show there's something new there for you."Me and Pam's People backstage bitching about, and a mockumentary about Pam getting ready for the show. Oh and Lily my Chinese crew character does a run through China Town, oooh, and there's the classic safety video."
Rock Hudson bedded Dean to win bet with Liz Taylor 19
12:56 PM — A former Hollywood starlet has revealed that actress Elizabeth Taylor made a bet with closeted gay actor Rock Hudson about which one of them could seduce James Dean.The much-married Ms Taylor lost out, according to Noreen Nash.Dean starred in the movie Giant with Taylor and Hudson, but he died before the film was released. "I had an idea Rock would win but Elizabeth wasn't so sure. James was troubled but gorgeous," said Ms Nash, according to the Daily Express.
Film to depict gay love of two Spanish icons
10:14 AM — A gay love affair between two of Spain's most celebrated creative luminaries, painter Salvador Dali and playwright Federico Garcia Lorca, will be depicted in the new film, Little Ashes.Named after a Dali painting, the film chronicles the 18-year-old Dali's arrival in Madrid in the 1920s and his subsequent friendship with the dramatist Lorca.As the relationship between the two intensifies, the sexually repressed artist is unable to consummate the affair and instead watches as Lorca sleeps with a female friend.
Comment: American TV is obsessed with gays 1
10:03 AM — I have a confession to make - I am seriously addicted to American daytime TV.Having just spent a few of weeks in rainy Costa Rica, where each day comprised of business meetings and dodging the never-ending bursts of torrential downpour, sitting in front of the box in my hotel room always seemed like the most sensible option.I certainly felt guilty wasting valuable times indoors when I could be out and about exploring the tropical rainforests or trying to find an iguana amid the lush jungles.
29th October 2007
Interview: Lesbian filmmaker tackles gender stereotypes
3:05 PM — A self-identified butch and a celluloid triple threat, Butch Jamie writer, director and star Michelle Ehlen plays with and challenges gender stereotypes.It's small wonder that a woman who named her production company Ballet Diesel Films would play with butch identity but Ehlen's wryly funny work intellectually stimulates while inducing raucous laughter.At its premiere earlier this summer Ehlen and her filmic alter ego Butch Jamie had Los Angeles' Outfest audiences rollicking, earning Ehlen the Outfest Jury Award for Outstanding Actress.
Liverpool hosts a celebration of queer culture
12:05 PM — homotopia, Liverpool's annual celebration of gay culture, returns to the city this week for the fourth year in a row.The event, the biggest to date, will incorporate a diverse and eclectic programme of art, theatre, music, dance, comedy, photography, debate, film and cabaret.Highlights include the National Theatre of Scotland's Liverpool debut with their critically acclaimed performance of Venus As A Boy.
26th October 2007
Elizabeth: The Golden Age
5:10 PM — 1997's Elizabeth, dealing with the early years of Queen Elizabeth I and her difficult passage to the throne, was a glorious example of the most lavish kind of period drama. Plush sets, a big-name cast, incredible costumes, and a central performance from a then-nearly unknown Cate Blanchett, who was robbed of an Oscar - Best Actress that year instead went to Gwyneth Paltrow for her turn in the so-so Elizabethan romantic comedy Shakespeare in Love, prompting a memorable bout of acceptance speech hysterics.
Lions for Lambs 1
5:10 PM — Say what you like about Tom Cruise, he certainly knows how to pick his films. He may well have had a falling out with Paramount after his bizarre, Scientology and love-inspired behaviour in the run-up to his wedding last year, but love him or loathe him he's one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood - and you don't get to that level of fame by appearing in bad films. Unless, of course, they're bad films that are likely to make a huge amount of money - like Days of Thunder, Legend or the last couple of Mission: Impossible movies.
5:10 PM — In the wake of the massive success of The Lord of the Rings, little wonder that Hollywood's been scrabbling around for other fantasy epics to bring to the big screen, now that the technology is finally good enough to create the kind of strange creatures with which such legendary settings abound. 2005's adaptation of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe - and its forthcoming sequel Prince Caspian - was an obvious choice, so similar are the two books, thanks to their authors' friendship.
Horror guru calls for gay lead characters in computer games 1
5:10 PM — Author, artist and computer game designer Clive Barker has attracted anti-gay remarks after saying he would like to see a game with a central gay character.Mr Barker made the remarks to Gamepro.com on Tuesday while being interviewed about the design and release of his new game, Jericho, on the Xbox 360.Asked about the role of gender in games, he said: "One day I want to be part of a team that creates a game with a gay man or woman in the lead role where they are casually sexual."
American Gangster 1
5:10 PM — OK, so the last team-up between director Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe, last year's film adaptation of A Year in Provence that was A Good Year, may have been critically panned and largely ignored by cinemagoers.Yes, Scott's outing before that, 2005's historical epic Kingdom of Heaven, was likewise slated and shunned. And yes, his film before that, the Nic Cage-starring Matchstick Men, made little real impact.
5:10 PM — What is it with doing remakes of classic Michael Caine films? Haven't they learned by now? We've had the glossy but utterly facile Jude Law-starring remake of Alfie, which singularly managed to remove any of the easy cool and charm from that wonderfully misogynistic character, and ripped out the deep sense of melancholy at the heart of the original film in the process. We've had the truly abysmal, almost sacrilegious remake of the glorious Get Carter, with Sylvester Stallone making Caine's cold-heartedly distraught mob killer on a revenge trip into an overweight and pathetically mumbling joke.
The Darjeeling Limited
5:10 PM — The fifth film by oddball director Wes Anderson - he of The Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic fame - was always going to be much anticipated.Anderson's films have a wonderful tendency to be both decidedly quirky and gloriously affecting comic character studies quite unlike anything being churned out by anyone else in the Hollywood mainstream.
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
5:10 PM — One of the most anticipated films of the autumn, The Assassination of Jesse James has nonetheless been a long time in coming - nearly as long as its title, in fact.Originally set for a 2006 release, with filming completed more than two years ago, despite rave reviews from test screenings for the central performances of Brad Pitt (as James) and Ben's little brother Casey Affleck (as Ford), the fact that the film is a Western seems to have given the studio a number of concerns.
5:10 PM — One of the major benefits of the spread of the internet and the boom in movie piracy has been that the big American studios have finally begun to release their films world-wide at approximately the same time. Whereas in the bad old days us poor consumers from the UK market would end up getting Christmas movies in February or March, the studios following their old pattern of staggering European releases until a good three months after the American box office had had its fill, or even have to wait until the following Christmas, those nasty pirates have forced the studios' hands.
London prepares for glittering gay awards ceremony 52
3:41 PM — Next week the Victoria and Albert Museum will host one of the highlights of the gay calendar - the Stonewall Awards.Tickets for Thursday's event sold out over a month ago, and A-List gays, sports people, performers, politicians, celebrities and TV stars will be out in force for the annual ceremony, which will be hosted by MTV and T4 presenter Anthony Crank.The Stonewall Awards, sponsored by Barclays, are designed to celebrate the range of positive contributions being made by individuals and organisations to the lives of gay people in Britain.
24th October 2007
Comment: America can’t get enough of gay Dumbledore 10
11:40 AM — You've probably already heard the one about Albus Dumbledore being a friend of Dorothy.The Associated Press, The New York Times, even CNN featured the headline on its tickertape, right behind an update of the California fires.So why is an innocent announcement by Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling that her 150 some odd year-old wizard is gay such a headline grabber?
23rd October 2007
“Brave and brilliant gay men” not news to JK Rowling 1
6:45 PM — The novelist JK Rowling has told an audience in Canada she is surprised by the amount of fuss generated by her announcement that one of the main characters in her Harry Potter series is gay.The 42-year-old, whose seven-series saga about the boy wizard has made her an estimated £545m, sent shockwaves round the world on Saturday when she told an audience of fans in New York that the headmaster of wizarding school Hogwarts was gay."It has certainly never been news to me that a brave and brilliant man could love other men," she told a news conference today.