The 69th annual Golden Globe nominations were announced recently and there’s a slew of Hollywood East connections!
Movies that were filmed in the area in whole or part racked up nods in major categories. Moneyball, which filmed scenes at Fenway Park, received nominations for Best Motion Picture (Drama), Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama), Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture, and Best Screenplay (Motion Picture).
We Need to Talk about Kevin, which was filmed in part in Connecticut, was nominated in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama), for Tilda Swinton’s stirring performance.
On the television side of things, stars that originate from the area were also nominated in a handful of categories. Burlington, MA native Amy Poehler was nominated for her role on “Parks and Recreation” in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series (Comedy or Musical) category.
Newton’s own Matt LeBlanc was nominated in the Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series (Comedy or Musical), for his role on “Episodes”.
Dig a little deeper, and you can find even more New England connections to some of the nominated stars. Well-respected actress Glenn Close made her first forays into the acting world as a student at Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, CT. Perennial favorite “Glee” was nominated once again in the Best Television Series (Comedy or Musical) category, and is helmed in part by co-creator and Newton native, Brad Falchuk. We even got the chance to speak to the director of Beginners at a special advance screening this summer in downtown Boston. The universally lauded Christopher Plummer finds himself with one nomination for his performance in the film in the category of Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture.
The 69th annual Golden Globes will air January 15th on NBC.
And so, another year has passed in Hollywood East, and with it, a ton of projects, developments, and other news items that captured our interest throughout 2011. Let’s take a look back at what made headlines in Hollywood East over the past year.
A bevy of big budget productions pranced their way through the Bay State, bringing with it a steady stream of big name stars. I Don’t Know How She Does It brought Sarah Jessica Parker, Christina Hendricks, and “Cheers” alum, Kelsey Grammar. Ted brought Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, and Seth MacFarlane. Here Comes the Boom brought Kevin James, Salma Hayek, and Henry Winkler. I Hate You Dad brought Adam Sandler, Adam Samberg, and Leighton Meester. And finally, R.I.P.D. brought Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon, and Kurt Russell.
We were excited to see all the films that debuted this year that filmed in Boston in whole or in part in the past year or two. Films like The Zookeeper, Moneyball, I Don’t Know How She Does It, and What’s Your Number showed movie-goers across the country why the Bay State makes such a beautiful backdrop for major motion pictures.
There were also updates on the state of the MA film tax credits, with some changes taking place. The Office of Travel and Tourism took over the responsibilities previously looked after by the Massachusetts Film Office, with Lisa Strout taking over for Nick Paleologos.
In more disappointing news, it seems the Plymouth Rock Studios project has been put on permanent hold.
Culled from our own backyard, we spoke to local stars of film, TV, and music. Brighton-based band Gentlemen Hall made us lend an ear and a cheer as we watched these talented youngsters make their live national television debut on the Billboard Music Awards.
We were lucky enough to get invited to a sneak peak of the Footloose remake, and got to talk to home-grown star, Kenny Wormald on how he brought a little bit of Boston to the new version of this 80s cult classic.
Reality TV continues to make headlines year after year. In 2011, we watched with excitement the adventures the infamous “Deathwish Movers” went through each week, and cheered on local stars on “Top Chef: Desserts”, “Chopped”, and the “Expedition Impossible” who did New England proud. The genre even inspired the hilarious web-series, “Real Housewives of South Boston”, which we sincerely hope to see more of in 2012!
The culinary world even captured our attention, with it’s Hollywood East Connections. Our favorite homeboy, Mark Wahlberg, surprised us all by venturing into the culinary world, opening the aptly named Wahlburgers in Hingham. “Hell’s Kitchen” star, Jason Santos, opened Blue Inc., and “Top Chef; All Stars” contestant, Tiffany Faison, opened the ever so cutely named BBQ spot, Sweet Cheeks.
These are just a few of the fabulous and fascinating stories that kept us connected in Hollywood East this year. Here’s hoping 2012 brings with it more excitement in TV, movies, and music across the New England states!
Sunday night, the 63rd Emmy Awards were presented by first time host Jane Lynch of Fox’s “Glee.” While New England was well-represented throughout the show, the big winners of the evening was ABC’s “Modern Family,” winning a total of five awards, including the first four awards of the evening.
Massachusetts men, Steve Carrell and John Krasinski were both spotted on the red carpet, speaking individually to E’s Ryan Seacrest. Krasinski remarked on how he had not seen Carrell since he left, and how he was enjoying working with James Spader, a new addition to “The Office” family. Carrell likewise said how he was looking forward to catching up with his former cast.
Boston’s own Leonard Nimoy helped open the show, appearing as the ‘President of Television’ in the opening gag/musical number with Jane Lynch about the world of TV. The skit featured Lynch making her way through an apartment building where all of the current TV shows “live.” At one point, Lynch happened upon the “Mad Men” set, and sang to the characters about how women “in the future” can marry other women. Lynch married her partner in Sunderland, Massachusetts, in 2010. Many television stars made appearances throughout the skit; even the “Can you hear me now?” guy from the infamous Verizon commercials, Paul Marcarelli, a native of North Haven, Connecticut, made a brief cameo.
As for the awards, Matt LeBlanc, a Newton native, lost to Jim Parsons from “Big Bang Theory” for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy and “Downton Abby (Masterpiece)” beat “The Kennedys” for Outstanding Miniseries or Movie. Barry Pepper, who played Robert F. Kennedy in the controversial miniseries “The Kennedys,” won the best supporting actor award.
Burlington’s Amy Poehler, along with winner Melissa McCarthy helped present the award for Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie. Poehler was up against McCarty earlier in the evening for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy. The funny lady nominees each scrambled to the stage as their names were called and assembled in a row, pageant-like, and stood holding hands, before McCarthy was announced as the winner, and presented with her trophy, along with a tiara and bouquet of roses.
Mark Wahlberg was spotted in the audience when Lynch introduced the cast of “Entourage,” who presented the award for Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special. Actor Jeremy Piven even joked about his former boss, remarking about how “HBO, also known as the Mark Wahlberg Channel.” Wahlberg served as executive producer of the show up until its last season earlier this year.
Also appearing during the telecast, Connecticut’s Michael Bolton reprised his role as Captain Jack Sparrow from his wildly popular viral digital video with the SNL guys who make up the Lonely Island music group.
Actress Jill Clayburgh, who died in early November of last year, appeared in the annual “In Memoriam” reel; she was a native of Connecticut.
The latest picture to feature the super sexy Brad Pitt is arriving at theaters on September 23. The movie, entitled Moneyball, is based on a true story about the Oakland Athletics baseball team and its general manager Billy Beane, and its attempts to assemble a competitive baseball team, through a carefully analyzed methodology. Pitt plays Oakland Athletics GM Billy Beane, who called upon the help of now- Red Sox stats man Bill James’ complex computer analytics and lackluster ticket revenues to build a winning ball club.The movie is based on the book of the same name by Michael Lewis which was published in 2003.
The film, which was initially delayed and at one time speculated to be filming entirely in Boston, ended up spending just about a week in Beantown in October 2010, filming scenes with Pitt around Fenway Park.
The trailer for the movie, which was released several weeks ago in anticipation of its debut, features a brief scene scene shot at Fenway Park with Pitt and an actor portraying John Henry, principal owner of the Red Sox.
The movie is co-written by Aaron Sorkin, who also penned The Social Network, another movie that was partially made in Boston.
How any movie makes it from its first original concept to finished product is almost a miracle. Execs working on the baseball flick Moneyball know this all too well. After being stuck in pre-production for months, shooting in L.A. and Boston is scheduled to start sometime in July. Originally the budget was almost $60 million but had to be cut down to about $45 million. The last big hurdle left to jump is getting MLB approval.
Moneyball is based on Michael Lewis’ eponymous book about Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane. Brad Pitt will star as Billy Beane and his crusade to craft a competitive team with a sliver of the budget of other top baseball teams. Helmed by Bennett Miller, Jonah Hill also stars as Paul De Podesta, Billy Beane’s whiz kid assistant. Lewis also authored The Blind Side, which was later turned into a movie with leading lady Sandra Bullock.
Baseball fans will see some old favorites on the big screen, including David Justice, Darryl Strawberry, Scott Hatteberg, and Lenny Dykstra. Will Moneyball be for baseball what The Blind Side was for football? We’ll have to wait for Pitt and Hill’s performance before dubbing it a home run.
You can subscribe to HollywoodEastConnection.com by e-mail address to receive news and upates directly in your inbox. Simply enter your e-mail below and click Sign Up!