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DOC NYC 2019 Women Directors: Meet Martha Shane – “Narrowsburg”

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Martha Shane is an Emmy-award-winning documentary filmmaker whose credits include “After Tiller” and “Picture Character.” The former won the Emmy for Best Documentary.

“Narrowsburg” will premiere at the 2019 DOC NYC film festival on November 10.

W&H: Describe the film for us in your own words.

MS: “Narrowsburg” tells the darkly comic story of a French film producer and her mafioso-turned-actor husband, Jocelyne and Richard Castellano). The couple move to the tiny town of Narrowsburg, NY, hoping to start a new life. Persuading the townspeople that they can be movie stars, the pair create a fever pitch of excitement, launching a film festival that’s going to be “bigger than Sundance,” and shooting a gangster movie.

As we watch the couple’s rise and fall, the film becomes a meditation on cinema, and the fine line between dreams and delusions.

W&H: What drew you to this story?

MS: In many ways, it feels like this story found me, rather than the reverse. The film’s co-producer Dan Nuxoll, who runs Rooftop Films, had rented some equipment to a woman who was founder of the Queens International Film Festival. When the woman disappeared without paying, we started reaching out to people who might know her, trying to get that bill paid, and over and over, we kept encountering people who claimed she had ripped them off. It seemed so bizarre — why would anyone use a film festival as a vehicle for scamming people?

So initially, I was drawn to the story because I wanted to find the answer to that question, and because I grew up obsessed with mystery novels, and loved the detective aspect of the project. Over time, as the project evolved, what made me determined to finish the film was falling in love with the town of Narrowsburg, and feeling compelled to do their story justice.

W&H: What do you want people to think about when they are leaving the theater?

MS: What is the difference between giving people a beautiful dream to believe in and conning them? Where is the line between ambition and delusion? And why does filmmaking, and the idea of Hollywood in particular, have this enduring power and allure?

W&H: What was the biggest challenge in making the film?

MS: The conception of this film changed completely over the years that it was in production, and my entire creative team changed as well. So I think the greatest challenge was being able to throw out that initial idea for the project, which wasn’t working, and find the story that I really wanted to tell.

Ultimately, I discovered that all the questions I was interested in exploring — about the power of cinema, that line between ambition and delusion, and the way memory is affected by the stories we hear and the stories we tell ourselves — were crystallized in the tale of the Castellanos’ years in Narrowsburg.

W&H: How did you get your film funded? Share some insights into how you got the film made.

MS: We tried everything! If you see the film, you’ll understand right away why it was difficult to raise money for this particular story, though of course fundraising is rarely easy for any project. Ultimately, the film was funded through a combination of private investment and donations, crowdsourcing, and grant support from the New York State Council on the Arts.

W&H: What inspired you to become a filmmaker?

MS: I studied film as an undergraduate at Wesleyan University, and was lucky enough to spend four years reveling in the films of Alfred Hitchcock, Claire Denis, Hong Sang-Soo, Alan Berliner, and other incredible filmmakers. After college, I initially wanted to become a fiction film editor. But less than a year after graduating from college, I got a job transcribing for a documentary, and then ultimately I ended up producing that film.

Through that process, I spent a few years working with two amazing female filmmakers who showed me that making films was something that we could actually do! On our own! We didn’t need someone else to give us permission. That was a huge revelation for me.

W&H: What’s the best and worst advice you’ve received?

MS: The best advice is that if you need someone to help you out with a whole long list of things, ask them to help you out with one of those things first. Often, once they’ve helped with the first thing, they’ll end up helping with the rest too.

The worst advice is that you have to listen to everyone’s feedback. Feedback is crucial, but it’s important to know that the person sharing their thoughts with you fundamentally appreciates the type of film you are making. For example, if someone doesn’t like interview-driven documentaries, they’re probably not the best person to give feedback on your interview-driven film.

W&H: What advice do you have for other female directors?

MS: I remember talking to a veteran cinematographer and asking them about how different directors work. All they could say was that every filmmaker goes about making films in a completely different way. In fact, they said that the same filmmaker often goes about making different films in completely different ways — which is all a way of saying that there really is no right way to do this. You have to figure out through experimentation what works for you.

W&H: Name your favorite woman-directed film and why.

MS: It’s impossible to choose a favorite! But there are two that I’ve been thinking about lately. One is Lynne Ramsay’s “Morvern Callar,” which I saw for the first time in college and loved. So many images from that film — including the blinking Christmas tree lights — will never leave me.

Another, which I was introduced to this year for the first time, is Lina Wertmüller’s “Seven Beauties.” This film, its dark sense of humor, and its lead actor’s astonishing performance blew me away. I couldn’t believe that it wasn’t on my radar until now.

W&H: What differences have you noticed in the industry since the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements launched?

MS: I think I’ve noticed more dramatic changes in the wider world than in my small corner of the film industry. Personally and intellectually, it’s been fascinating to see the discussion evolve around what constitutes an abuse of power, and I think it’s still very much evolving and probably always will be. I’m so grateful to the women who have spoken up and became part of these movements, and to the journalists who broke these stories. A lot of progress has been made.

And yet I still find myself regularly infuriated by the influence of patriarchal ideas on our industry, the broader world, and my own thinking, and obsessed with how to counter that influence.



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Entertainment

Princess Love Calls Ray J Out For Blocking Her On Instagram

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Whew chile, Princess Love is apparently still going through it with husband Ray J—and this time it’s translated over to social media. Following her allegations that he left her stranded in Las Vegas following the Soul Train Awards, it appears that he has also officially blocked her on Instagram.

While last weekend’s Soul Train Awards celebrated the best in black music, “Love & Hip Hop Hollywood” stars, Ray J and Princess Love were embroiled in some serious personal drama. As we previously reported, Princess recently claimed that after Ray J was done co-hosting the Soul Train Awards red carpet, he allegedly left her and their 1-year-old daughter Melody stranded in Vegas with no way home.

When her followers on social media questioned the specifics of the situation and why she couldn’t just go home by herself, she responded with this:

“Yes I can fly home..I have my own money. But my car is here and I don’t want to drive back alone with my daughter because I’m over 8 months pregnant and I don’t even want to have to stop for gas or go into labor with all of this human trafficking going on…”

Well now, Princess is providing evidence that Ray J has her blocked on Instagram by posting a screenshot of his page, she also posted this message about the situation:

“Somebody tell Scooty boy he’s only hurting himself. This is so funny to me.

When someone commented with, “My future husband would never,” Princess responded, saying “mine either sis.”

The question is, what’s really going on between these two? Are they headed for a divorce or is this just a marital spat?

 

Roommates, what are your thoughts on this?





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How Facebook is brainwashing you into oblivion (Video) : theCHIVE

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As most of you know, Facebook is actively trying to censor theCHIVE. We’re fighting back. Subscribe to theCHIVE, never see another ad, and enjoy a much-needed laugh right here!

Download the #1 humor app in America on iOS or Android. Every time our free app gets downloaded, the underdogs score another victory.

Please support all the publishers you love by going directly to their websites or downloading their apps.

Animation by Jay Marks!

PS – Upvote and share this video however you can and join the fight.

Sources (for the Facebook Lawyers):

“Facebook Admits To Listening to User Conversations”

“House Lawmakers Launch Facebook Anti-Trust Probe”

“Delete Facebook”

“#deletefacebook hashtag trends as social users fume”

“Facebook Admitted That Using Facebook Can Be Bad For You”



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Larsa Pippen Wears Sexy Outfit While Breaking A Sweat At The Gym – Hollywood Life

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Larsa Pippen put her workout moves on display in a sexy Instagram clip that left many others, including a WWE superstar, feeling inspired to break a sweat!

Larsa Pippen, 45, definitely knows how to get people’s attention with her droolworthy social media shares. Her latest clip, posted on Nov. 20, found her working out her arms and legs in a midriff-baring black and gold ensemble. She wore her hair in a bun while effortlessly pumping her body up for her 1.8 million Instagram followers to gawk at. It was the third time in 48 hours that Larsa posted videos of herself at the gym… could this mean she’s trying to break into the fitness biz? She definitely could after many fans and celebs, like WWE star Natalie Eva Marie, 35, felt inspired when watching her footage. “Yasssss boo!!!!!” the former Celebrity Big Brother houseguest wrote in the comments section. “We are going to have to get a workout in together one of these days! You are killing it!!!”

Her fitness efforts are clearly paying off as she showed off her gorgeous gams at the BaesandBikinis Los Angeles launch party in West Hollywood one day earlier on Nov. 19. She sported some Daisy Dukes with a tucked in black tank top and black and white jacket for the west coast outing. Larsa wore a different but very sexy pair of Daisy Dukes earlier in the month during a fabulous boat outing in Miami.

Larsa turned the heat up once again on Nov. 21 when she struck a pose in a sultry lingerie look that left little (as usual) to the imagination on Instagram. She also shared a couple of Instagram Stories in the ensemble where the mother-of-four showed off her bedazzled pair of heels that she wore with it.

The social media superstar has brought the term “Hot Girl Summer” deep into the fall season with her seemingly endless looks that are nothing short of sizzling hot. She stole focus from Drake at his 33rd birthday party in a fringe mini dress on Oct. 23.

Ooh la la! Larsa also put her amazing curves on display during a birthday outing with BFF Kourtney Kardashian, 40 on Nov. 2 in a little black dress and thigh-high boots.

 





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