Having just enjoyed myself immensely at Threat Level, it’s great to watch hosts Actor Slash Model’s sample of “Riot Acts,” their documentary about trans musicians. Its stated aim “Flaunting gender deviance in music performance” seems spot on, with a wide range of gender expressions as well as musical styles and fierce editing skills to boot. This sample really gets me excited for the final thing. September ’09 is the promised release date, keep up to date with the project and the Chicago based film makers at actorslashmodel.com
Posts Tagged ‘musicians’
You already know about Actor Slash Model’s Bi-monthly queer film screening, Threat Level. This Thursday, Simon and Madsen are raising money for their film project with a uber mega super blitz. The Empty Bottle will be inundated with all the queers you can shake a silicon stick at, a slew of queer bands and performers hosted by the effervescent Jessica Halem.
Thursday March 13, 2008
The Empty Bottle ~ 1035 N. Western Ave., Chicago, IL
8pm, 21+, $10 – no one turned away
with The Pussy Pirates, The Joans, Condenada, Brother Truck, Justin Petertil, Plaid on Plaid, and Actor Slash Model. Hosted by Jessica Halem. Poor taste and bad behavior provided by Ravenous Gorge, Backdoor Aly, Spanky Bottoms and Co. Plus raffles, a sneak peak screening, drink specials, etc.
ACTOR SLASH MODEL plays at Reggies Music Joint (it’s new and has great food!), 2105 S. State St.
one block east of the Chinatown Red Line stop this Sunday, January 27, 7 pm with Johnny Rumble and The Polymer Twins!
Actors Slash Model was awarded a Fire This Time grant in Dec 2007 to make a documentary film about trans-identified musicians. Read about their project in the San Fransicso Bay Times!
(Full article after the jump)
Is momentum building for a renaissance of movie musicals? Chicago  won Best Picture and five other Academy Awards, but it was the film’s $170 million domestic box office that likely convinced studios to give singing and dancing another shot. In the last few years, we have seen screen adaptations of hit Broadway musicals The Phantom of the Opera , Rent , The Producers , Dreamgirls , and Hairspray . Furthermore, films like Across the Universe  and I’m Not There  incorporate songs by the Beatles and Bob Dylan into their narratives. Unsurprisingly, gay men and women are spearheading this trend as directors, actors, producers and composers. This weekend, composer-lyricist Stephen Sondheim, makes his contribution.
This writer is a gay man that absolutely loves musicals, stereotype be damned. He has memorized Sondheim’s masterpiece, Sweeney Todd : The Demon Barber of Fleet Street . This Friday, Tim Burton’s film adaptation of Sweeney Todd opens. Superstar Johnny Depp is the reason the film was greenlit with a budget of $50 million, and certainly the reason why it is playing in suburban multiplexes. After all, it ain’t Oklahoma! The brilliance of Sweeney Todd is in the way it undermines the traditional musical model. Yes, it has gorgeous music and clever lyrics, but it is a dark, bitterly hilarious tale of revenge. And there is BLOOD. Critics have praised the film, especially Mr. Depp’s performance (yes, he can sing!), the new orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick, and the stunning art direction inspired by Hammer horror films. Sondheim himself was involved in making controversial casting and cutting decisions, and by all reports the composer is proud of the finished product. He has hosted private screenings for his friends, including the original Mrs. Lovett, Angela Lansbury.
Please help Sweeney Todd be a commercial success. It may usher in a new Golden Age of Movie Musicals. Oh, wouldn’t it be loverly?
- R. Esquivel