NAACP President Says ‘Green Book’ Is a ‘Missed Opportunity’ With a ‘False Storyline’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Derrick Johnson, the president of the NAACP, said that the Best Picture-nominated “Green Book” was a “missed opportunity” to portray the nuances of an African American character like Dr. Don Shirley. Johnson also said that the film relied on a “negative stereotype” and a “false storyline.”

Johnson spoke with TheWrap during the Television Critics Association press tour. And while he praised Mahershala Ali’s performance as Don Shirley, he said that director Peter Farrelly’s film is inaccurate and a “setback.”

“Mahershala Ali’s portrayal, I mean, his skills were great. So I see that as a missed opportunity to have great content that’s more accurate than not,” Johnson told TheWrap at TCA. “So for me, it was great acting skills for Mahershala, with a false storyline that’s masquerading to be true.”

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Universal didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment on Johnson’s comments.

Ali was nominated for an NAACP Image Award on Wednesday, the film’s only nomination.

Johnson also said that the writers failed to speak with Shirley’s family about his character. “Green Book” was co-written by Nick Vallelonga, the son of the white character Tony Vallelonga who was portrayed by Viggo Mortensen. According to Vallelonga, Shirley asked Vallelonga to not contact the Shirley family while he was researching the film. And Vallelonga also told TheWrap that Shirley confirmed all the stories he had heard from his father.

“When you create a movie like ‘Green Book’ and you project as if there’s a white guy introducing a black guy to fried chicken — a traditional African American dish — which is patently wrong, the family says that, there was never any conversation with the family about the uniqueness of the character,” Johnson said. “So as a result of that, none of the quality nuances of the character came through and it fell on a very myopic, negative stereotype that should no longer exist.”

Also Read: NAACP Tells Megyn Kelly to ‘Check Herself’: ‘Blackface Is Always Racist and Never OK’

Ali previously addressed and apologized for the backlash over “Green Book” after Shirley’s family referred to the film as a “symphony of lies.” Ali spoke with the family directly and said he did not realize that Shirley had living family members with whom he could’ve consulted.

“He called me and my Uncle Maurice in which he apologized profusely if there had been any offense,” Edwin Shirley told NPR. “What he said was, ‘If I have offended you, I am so, so terribly sorry. I did the best I could with the material I had. I was not aware that there were close relatives with whom I could have consulted to add some nuance to the character.’”

“Green Book” is nominated for five Oscars, including Best Picture.

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Bret Easton Ellis: Free Speech Is Being “Muzzled” In Current Political Climate

Read on: Deadline.

Screenwriter and author Bret Easton Ellis claims free speech is being muzzled in the current political climate and that Hollywood has become “more uninteresting” as creativity is stifled.
Speaking to Rolling Stone, the author of the generat…

Hulu Orders ‘Less Than Zero’ Pilot, Casts ‘Walking Dead’ Alum in Andrew McCarthy’s Role

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“Less Than Zero” is alive at Hulu and has found its leading man.

The streaming service has ordered a pilot for the TV adaptation and cast “The Walking Dead” alum Austin Abrams in the role originally played by Andrew McCarthy in the 1987 feature film, a person with knowledge of the project tells TheWrap.

In April, TheWrap reported Hulu had a drama in the early stages of development based on Bret Easton Ellis’ 1985 novel and the subsequent ’87 flick of the same name, starring McCarthy, Robert Downey Jr., Jamie Gertz and James Spader. “Lost” writer and producer Craig Wright is penning the script and executive producing the adaptation, alongside author Ellis.

Also Read: ‘Less Than Zero’ TV Adaptation in Development at Hulu

Abrams plays Clay, who has grown up in the “excess and lavish ’80s Los Angeles,” but unlike all of his friends who stayed behind for college, Clay is now in his freshman year on the East Coast. Clay returns home for Christmas to his complicated relationship with Blair, his high school girlfriend, and is worried about his friend Julian who is struggling with addiction. The Fox 21-produced reboot explores the culture of wealth and decadence among Los Angeles youth.

Along with “The Walking Dead,” Abrams’ recent small-screen credits include “The Americans,” “SMILF,” “Silicon Valley” and “Shameless.” He has also appeared in the films “Paper Towns,” “Gangster Squad” and “The Kings of Summer.”

20th Century Fox distributed the “Less Than Zero” film and owns rights to the franchise.

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‘Less Than Zero’ TV Adaptation in Development at Hulu

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Hulu is picking up a piece of the ’80s with a TV series adaptation of “Less Than Zero,” an individual with knowledge of production tells TheWrap.

The premium streaming service has a drama in the early stages of development based on Bret Easton Ellis’ 1985 novel and the subsequent 1987 flick of the same name, starring Andrew McCarthy, Robert Downey Jr., Jamie Gertz and James Spader.

“Lost” writer and producer Craig Wright is set to pen the script and executive produce the adaptation alongside author Ellis.

Also Read: ‘The Path’ Canceled After 3 Seasons At Hulu

The Fox 21-produced reboot will follow a college freshman who returns home for Christmas to spend time with his ex-girlfriend and his friend who is struggling with addiction and explore the culture of wealth and decadence among Los Angeles youth.

20th Century Fox distributed the “Less Than Zero” film and owns rights to the franchise.

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Hulu Developing ‘Less Than Zero’ Drama From Craig Wright Based On Bret Easton Ellis Novel

Read on: Deadline.

Hulu has put in development a TV adaptation of Less Than Zero, based on Bret Easton Ellis’ novel of the same name, from Ellis, Greenleaf creator Craig Wright and Fox 21 Television Studios.
Adapted by Wright, Less Than Zero follows a college fresh…

Bret Easton Ellis Finds Stephen Miller ‘Completely Compelling,’ Wants to Write a Novel About Him

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“American Psycho” author Bret Easton Ellis wants to write a novel about Senior White House adviser Stephen Miller, who he calls “completely compelling. The writer declared his ambitions in a Wednesday night tweet.

Miller, a Santa Monica native, made headlines on Wednesday for going after CNN’s Jim Acosta during a White House press briefing. He called the reporter “insulting, ignorant and foolish.”

In a tweet, Ellis asked, “Why do I not want to write a novel about Jim Acosta?”

Why do I find Stephen Miller completely compelling and want to write a novel about him? Why do I not want to write a novel about Jim Acosta? pic.twitter.com/j9x3TnM2HE

— Bret Easton Ellis (@BretEastonEllis) August 3, 2017

Also Read: Trump Adviser Stephen Miller Slams CNN’s Jim Acosta to His Face: ‘Ignorant and Foolish’ (Video)

Ellis has been extremely vocal regarding politics during the Trump era, saying “childish meltdowns” by Hollywood liberals who still can’t accept Donald Trump’s win are ruining his dinners out with friends — and even hurting his relationship with his boyfriend.

Earlier this year on a podcast, Ellis said coastal elites who embrace the anti-Trump “resistance” are testing his patience. He talked about a ruined night out at Spago’s, and another dinner spoiled by a millionaire who was furious about “patriarchy.”

Miller took to the podium during Wednesday’s press briefing to discuss President Trump’s plan to revamp legal immigration when the CNN senior White House correspondent was called on for a question about the new policy that favors English-speaking immigrants. The two got into a heated exchange over the poem on the Statue of Liberty.

Also Read: Trump Adviser Stephen Miller Ripped by Anne Frank Center Over Statue of Liberty Comments

The potential subject of Ellis’ next novel eventually mocked Acosta for implying that only immigrants from Great Britain and Australia are capable of speaking English.

Miller sarcastically asked, “Have you honestly never met an immigrant from another country who speaks English outside of Great Britain and Australia? Is that your personal experience?”

Miller then called Acosta’s comment “one of the most outrageous, insulting, ignorant and foolish” things he’s ever said. Miller, considered an extremely controversial figure within Trump’s inner circle, helped write the infamous travel ban.

Ellis is also known for authoring “Less Than Zero,” “The Rules of Attraction,” “Glamorama,” “Lunar Park” and a collection of stories, “The Informers.”

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Bret Easton Ellis’ 9 Biggest Feuds, From Meryl Streep to ‘Glee’ (Photos)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“American Psycho” author Bret Easton Ellis is not one to hold back from airing his often-controversial thoughts — over the years, he’s cultivated the personae of an expert rabble-rouser. Here are seven people (and two TV shows) he’s unleashed his wordy wrath upon.

Barbra Streisand

Ellis tore into the icon for saying she’s gained weight after Trump’s election. “Really?,” he said on his podcast. “You’re blaming the president for your own problems and neuroses?”

Lena Dunham

He attacked the “Girls” star for that same reason on the podcast. Dunham famously declared she’s lost weight because of the president.

Meryl Streep

On that same podcast, Ellis criticized the Oscar winner for bashing Trump during her Golden Globes speech instead of “talking about all the filmmakers she had worked with and who had passed away in the last two years.” What most irked Ellis: Streep not using her speech as an opportunity to eulogize her friend Carrie Fisher, who had just passed away.

David Foster Wallace

In his review of the David Foster Wallace biopic “The End of the Tour,” Ellis didn’t just go against the grain to trash James Ponsolt’s well-received film (he called it “reverential to a fault”), but used most of his critique to slag his formal rival, who’s since passed. In his review, he calls Wallace’s novel “Infinite Jest” “bloated and minor-key condescending.” Wallace once laid into Ellis in an interview with Larry McCaffrey, saying “American Pyscho” is “no more” than “a sort of performative digest of late-eighties social problems.”

Nikki Finke

As everyone in Hollywood knows, ex-Deadline editor Nikki Finke is a very private person. Her staff famously rarely saw her while working under her, and it’s hard to even find a photo of Finke online. Enter Ellis, who made her personal life very public when he took to Twitter to reveal that he lived in the same West Hollywood building as the industry vet. When Finke allegedly reported her displeasure to the building’s staff and management, Ellis returned to Twitter to blast her: “None of them know who the f–k she is,” he wrote.

Roger Rosenblatt

In his New York Times book review of “American Psycho,” critic Roger Rosenblatt urged readers to “snuff this book!” Asked to respond to the review by Rolling Stone, Ellis said the writer “made a complete ass of himself.” “I remember Sonny Mehta reading parts of it over the phone to me and I was laughing hysterically,” he said. “I mean, really — complaining about the grammar in a book that’s narrated by a madman is not only foolish, but it’s irresponsible.”

“Modern Family”

“Modern Family,” which features an openly gay couple as lead characters, was for years also a reliable Emmy winning critical favorite. That didn’t stop Ellis from slamming the sitcom on Twitter: “If you think Modern Family has a progressive attitude about gayness then you’re a retrograde tool. The fact that it’s being lauded: a joke.”

Matt Bomer

Ellis reduced the “Magic Mike” hunk to that guy from “Modern Family,” in tweeting about the rumor going around in 2012 that Bomer was close to being cast as Christian Grey in “Fifty Shades of Grey.” “Casting Matt Bomer is the equivalent as casting Jesse Tyler Ferguson…,” he tweeted.

“Glee”

Ryan Murphy is probably not a fan of Ellis following the author’s incendiary tweet about the now defunct teen show. “I like the idea of Glee but why is it that every time I watch an episode I feel like I’ve stepped into a puddle of HIV?” Ellis followed that up with another tweet five hours later defending his comment: ‘No, I wasn’t drunk last night. I was watching Chris Colfer singing, um, Le Jazz Hot and felt like I had suddenly come down with the hivs.”

 

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Bret Easton Ellis: Barbra Streisand, Lena Dunham Shouldn’t Blame Trump for Their Own ‘Neuroses’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Bret Easton Ellis says “childish meltdowns” by Hollywood liberals who still can’t accept Donald Trump’s win are ruining his dinners out with friends — and even hurting his relationship with his boyfriend.

In a 35-minute monologue on his latest podcast, the “American Psycho” author says coastal elites who embrace the anti-Trump “resistance” are testing his patience. He talked about a ruined night out at Spago’s, and another dinner spoiled by a millionaire who was furious about “patriarchy.” He also called out Lena Dunham, Barbra Streisand and Meryl Streep.

“You can dislike the fact that Trump was elected, yes, definitely, and yet still understand and accept ultimately that he was elected this time around. Or you can have a complete mental and emotional collapse and let the Trump presidency define you, which I think is absurd. … If you are still losing your s— about Trump, I think you should probably go to a shrink and not let the bad man that was elected define your self-victimization and your life. You are letting him win.”

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“Barbra Streisand says she’s gaining weight because of Trump. Lena Dunham says she’s losing weight because of Trump. Really? You’re blaming the president for your own problems and neuroses?” Ellis said.

He also wondered why Meryl Streep used her Golden Globe speech in January to talk about Trump.

“Instead of talking about all the filmmakers she had worked with and who had passed away in the last two years — Michael Cimino, Mike Nichols, Nora Ephron, or especially what it was like playing Carrie Fisher in ‘Postcards From the Edge,’ since Fisher had died just two weeks earlier, Streep used this moment to go on an anti-Trump rant for 10 minutes on national TV, instead of eulogizing her friend — again, reinstating the moral superiority of the left and ignoring aesthetics in place of ideology,” Ellis said.

Also Read: CNN’s Kayleigh McEnany Apologizes for False Obama Slam

He later added: “For some reason I started thinking about the cost of Meryl Streep’s gown at the Golden Globes and the $30 million apartment she had recently put on the market in Greenwich Village.”

Ellis said one of the “morally superior wealthy people” who ruined a recent dinner with friends by complaining about white male patriarchy lives in a penthouse on the Upper West Side — “and probably has a net worth of $10 million dollars.”

“Liberalism used to be about freedom but now is about a kind of warped moral authority that is actually part of the moral superiority movement. This faction of the left is touchingly now known as ‘The Resistance.’ Oh yes, the resistance. What is this resistance? There are posters all over my neighborhood in West Hollywood urging me to resist, resist, resist,” he said.

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“But some of us, who did not vote for Trump, and who located exactly who he was decades ago … some of us have been wondering: Resist what, exactly? And who is telling us to resist whatever? The people who voted for the candidate who lost — I’m supposed to listen to them? Is this a joke? … Well I’m certainly resisting the childish meltdowns I’ve been witnessing at dinners and on social media and on late night TV and too many times in my own home.”

Ellis said his own boyfriend has relapsed into a struggle with opiates since Trump’s rise.

“What was happening to my boyfriend was also reflective of the epidemic of moral superiority that has engulfed and is now destroying, eating alive, the American left. I cannot count the time my boyfriend has left the house since the election his hair long and tousled, he hasn’t shaved in months, and he’s addicted to three things besides opiates: Russian conspiracies discussed on Reddit, Rachel Maddow detailing Russian conspiracies, and Final Fantasy 15,” Ellis said.

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The author said he didn’t vote in the presidential election because his state, California, wasn’t in contention. But he stressed that he is no fan of the president, and that Trump was the hero of Patrick Bateman, the sociopathic antihero of “American Psycho.”

“A long time ago in a country far, far away I had made Trump Patrick Bateman’s hero in ‘American Psycho,’” Ellis said. “I had researched the odious business practices, the lying, Roy Cohn as his mentor, the hideous racism. Followed his trajectory. I had done my homework. You do not need to remind me. I know it all.”

Ellis also said Trump and his fellow disruptors are successfully “blowing up fixed ideas about what is presidential and what is not how campaigns should be run or not, how social media should be used to reach voters or not.”

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“This is what leveled the press and made them look like some kind of old-school anachronism, unable to understand the new playbook that the disruptors had devised,” Ellis added. “Taking Trump literally was about as useful as complaining about the Kardashians. … The way the press the coverage of this election was an absolute moral disaster for our country.”

Ellis said he did have one dinner that wasn’t ruined recently — a night out in West Hollywood, where he was shocked to learn the entire table was voting for Trump. He said he tweeted about it, and was retweeted thousands of times, including by Trump himself.

“One of the women at that dinner texted me the next day and said she laughed when she saw the tweet. But she also warned: Don’t tell anyone who it is,” Ellis said. “Her business was Hollywood-based, and who knows what could happen in this climate? People were way too hysterical, and it’s just not worth it to defend your beliefs.”

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He said the recent dust-ups over conservative sociologist Charles Murray appearing at Middleburg College — and liberal commentator Van Jones’ offering mild recent praise for Trump — show that liberals are going too far to stifle dissent.

“It’s time to get up, pull on your big-boy pants, and have a stiff drink at the bar,” Ellis said. “Because in the end, we share only one country.”

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Nicole Kidman
A few weeks before Donald Trump’s inauguration, “Lion” star Nicole Kidman took some backlash for saying that Americans “need to support whoever the president is.” The actress, who holds dual U.S. and Australian citizenship, later clarified that her comments were simply a call for unity and support of democracy.

Matthew McConaughey
During the press tour for his movie “Gold,” Matthew McConaughey told the UK’s ChannelIFI that it’s time for Americans to “embrace” Trump. “It’s time to think about how constructive can you be because he’s our president,” McConaughey said.

Bret Easton Ellis
“American Psycho” author Bret Easton Ellis accused Trump protesters of “overreaction” at the opening of his art exhibit in London, according to the Irish Times. “I don’t really know what the path to power is with protest, it’s done, this is where we are,” the author said, accusing protesters, social media and celebrities of “aiding” divisiveness.

Cyndi Lauper
Madonna took some criticism for her profanity-laden speech at the Women’s March, where she said that she’s “thought an awful lot about blowing up the White House” following Trump’s inauguration. Among those denouncing her statements was Cyndi Lauper, who said “anger is not better than clarity and humanity.”

Jennifer Holliday
“Dreamgirls” star Jennifer Holliday dropped out of performing at Trump’s inauguration after taking heated backlash from those pledging to boycott the event entirely. After apologizing to her fans, Holliday later explained that she thought her performance could’ve been an act of “healing and unity.”

Dave Chappelle
When comedian Dave Chappelle returned to host “Saturday Night Live” after the presidential election in November, he encouraged Trump detractors to “give him a chance,” adding that “we, the historically disenfranchised, demand that he give us one too.”

 

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IFC Midnight Acquires ‘Psycho’ Shower Scene Documentary ’78/52’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

IFC Midnight has acquired domestic rights to director Alexandre O. Philippe’s “78/52,” the Sundance documentary that deconstructs the infamous shower scene from Alfred Hitchcock‘s “Psycho,” TheWrap has learned.

This is the second pickup for IFC’s midnight label at the festival, after acquiring “The Killing Ground.”

Philippe’s movie takes its title from the 78 setups and 52 cuts that were required to construct Hitchcock’s meticulously choreographed two-minute shower sequence in “Psycho.”

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The scene, like the 1960 movie, has become a landmark of cinema. Hitchcock dared to upend his own acclaimed narrative structure by violently killing off his heroine a third of the way through his film, without explanation, justification, or higher purpose.

Philippe breaks down the scene shot for shot, enlisting the help of film buffs and filmmakers including Guillermo del Toro, Bret Easton Ellis, Karyn Kusama, Eli Roth, and Peter Bogdanovich.

“78/52” is an Exhibit A Pictures production, produced by Kerry Deignan Roy; and co-produced by Oliver Schwehm of ARTE G.E.I.E., Chad Herschberger of Milkhaus, Annick Mahnert of Screen Division, and Robert Muratore of EXA.

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Executive producers are Felix Gill of Sensorshot Productions, Joey Porcelli, and Randy Pharo.

Arianna Bocco from Sundance Selects/IFC Films and Preferred Content’s Kevin Iwashina and Zac Bright negotiated the deal.

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Fullscreen Upcoming Original Series Include Bret Easton Ellis Thriller, Andrea Russett Talk Show

Read on: Variety.

Fullscreen announced its winter 2016-17 slate, with originals including Bret Easton Ellis’ directorial debut with psychological thriller “The Deleted” and a talk show hosted by YouTube star Andrea Russett. The programming will be available exclusively on the Fullscreen subscription video on demand platform, available worldwide for $4.99 per month. Launched this past April, the Fullscreen… Read more »