Christopher Plummer says All The Money In The World pay gap was a ‘scandal’

Christopher Plummer says All The Money In The World pay gap was a 'scandal'
Christopher Plummer replaced Kevin Spacey in All The Money In The World (Picture: Sony)

Christopher Plummer has said the pay disparity between Mark Wahlberg and Michelle Williams for reshoots on All The Money In The World was a ‘scandal’.

The film, directed by Ridley Scott, underwent reshoots last year to replace actor Kevin Spacey with Plummer after sexual harassment and assault allegations were made against Spacey.

Star Williams and Scott filmed the reshoots for free, receiving $80 a day per diem, while Wahlberg’s agent demanded a fee for the actor.

After this became public, the actor donated $1.5m rewards for the reshoots to the sexual misconduct defence initiative Time’s Up.

Plummer, who has been nominated for a best supporting actor Oscar for his perfomance in the film, said Mark did the right thing.

Mark Wahlberg and Michelle Williams
Mark Wahlberg was paid $1m to reshoot key scenes but later donated his fee in Michelle Williams’ name (Picture: Eric Charbonneau/REX/Shutterstock)

When asked about it by The Hollywood Reporter, Plummer said: ‘Oh Jesus, it never stops. The scandal goes on and on.

‘I thought it was good that Mark ended up donating his salary.’

After deciding to drop The House Of Cards star from the film, Scott said he ‘could not tolerate Spacey’s behaviour’.

He told Entertainment Tonight: ‘I was finished with the film and was in Abbey Road finalising the music. Someone was like: Guess what? And that’s where it began.

‘I sat and thought about it and realised, we cannot. You can’t tolerate any kind of behavior like that. And it will affect the film.

‘We cannot let one person’s action affect the good work of all these other people. It’s that simple.’

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Oscars: Why Darkest Hour shouldn’t even be nominated for Best Picture

Oscars: Why Darkest Hour shouldn’t even be nominated for Best Picture
Gary Oldman doesn’t actually look like Churchill though, does he? (Picture: Jack English/FOCUS FEATURES LLC)

Here’s a pub quiz question of the future for you – ‘What role did the following actors all play within a 10 year period: Gary Oldman, Brian Cox, Michael Gambon and Brendan Gleeson?’

The answer is, of course, Winston Churchill.

It’s time for Black Mirror to come to an end

You can also include Albert Finney in that list, if you go back to 2002, and Timothy Spall, among others, if you start counting supporting roles.

By now, Ian McKellen must be wondering why he is basically the only actor in the country over the age of 50 who’s yet to be invited to join the ‘I’ve Played Churchill’ club. That being said, he has narrated a documentary on the former Prime Minister, so perhaps that counts.

Our fascination with Churchill is an understandable one. After all, our fascination with World War Two is eminently justified considering the impact it had on the world, and Churchill was a key player.

But is Darkest Hour really doing anything new enough, or well enough, to warrant a spot on the Best Picture nomination list and a shot, however unlikely, at winning?

Many have called Gary Oldman ‘unrecognisable’ in Darkest Hour, but Oldman’s eyes are all wrong, and all the prosthetics in the world can’t change that.

Being ‘unrecognisable’ is very different from looking like Winston Churchill. Just like shaving Piers Morgan and adorning him with thick rimmed glasses would make him unrecognisable, but not much like Churchill.

Perhaps, then, I’m taking the word ‘unrecognisable’ too literally.

April 1939: British Conservative politician Winston Churchill. (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Images)
The real Winston Churchill (Picture: Evening Standard/Getty Images)

Oldman does transform himself, and the adopted mannerisms and performance he gives could be described as ‘unrecognisable’ in the ‘testament to someone’s acting prowess’ meaning of the word.

He thoroughly deserves his Best Actor nomination, and comparing his looks too minutely is possibly being pedantic.

However, Oldman being a great actor and giving a great performance doesn’t make Darkest Hour a great film.

Perhaps I’m just a product of my generation, and unable to cope with any film that doesn’t involve an action sequence in the first 10 minutes, but when you boil it down, Darkest Hour is essentially two hours of a man making a decision, then changing his mind, then changing it back again.

I appreciate that the decision Churchill had to make was a monumentally difficult one, with huge, far reaching consequences.

I also appreciate that portraying Churchill’s inner turmoil and outer verbal battle with much-maligned appeaser Lord Halifax makes for a potentially interesting film.

But that doesn’t change the fact that, at times, the pacing in Darkest Hour is unnecessarily slow.

The film really gets its teeth stuck into Churchill’s dilemma, but it could have been achieved more effectively by cutting 10 minutes, or by expanding the stories of the supporting characters and adding 10 minutes.

The motivations of Kristin Scott Thomas’ Clementine and Lily James’ Elizabeth are pretty neglected throughout, as is any meaningful look at their respective interactions with Churchill.

Behind every great man is a great woman, so either cut some of the more superficial scenes involving them to speed up the film, or, preferably, devote some screen time to them in order to create three-dimensional female characters that we can actually care about.

Gary Oldman, Kristin Scott Thomas
(Picture: Jack English/FOCUS FEATURES LLC)

Darkest Hour is a film about Winston Churchill, so of course most of the film is going to focus on him, but that doesn’t preclude introducing complexity to any other character, particularly one as influential in real life as Clemmie Churchill.

James and Thomas do the best with what they’re given, but if the Oscars are all about trying to promote inclusivity and equality at the moment, why is Darkest Hour even on the list?

I’m not saying the film is inherently sexist, but it does seem like somewhat of a missed opportunity to create some great female characters who could have added some nuance to the script.

That’s not to say Darkest Hour doesn’t have some great moments in it.

‘You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth’ is one of those movie lines that’ll stick around in my head for years to come, and some of the shots, like the ‘view from a Spitfire’ one, are brilliant.

However, I’m not sure I’ll ever see a scene in a Best Picture-nominated film that is quite so contrived as the tube ride passenger poll – as Churchill attempts to make up his mind between war or surrender and negotiation, the historical accuracy takes a pounding as he questions each passenger as to what they think he should do.

Repeated lines, in the style of a children’s show, are thrust unfavourably into the dialogue, as is some pretty hammy acting, and a convenient, unanimous consensus between all passengers that, yes, we should fight.

The cheesiness of it was so prevalent that it almost seemed like it was an intentionally bad joke.

Ultimately, it just doesn’t make sense to me that a film with so many flaws should be lauded as one of the best nine in past year.

You’ll never find a perfect film, but if you look at some of the previous Oscar nominees for Best Picture – from Pulp Fiction to Good Will Hunting, and The Shawshank Redemption to Gangs of New York – you realise that you can get pretty close.

Darkest Hour just doesn’t really belong in such illustrious company.

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Are the Transformers movies being rebooted after Bumblebee?

Are the Transformers movies being rebooted after Bumblebee?
(Picture: Paramount Pictures)

Brace yourselves Transformers fans, it’s not good news unfortunately as Paramount have announced that they have dropped Transformers 6.

The movie was set to be realeased in 2019 but has since been removed from the film company’s upcoming titles.

It has been an explosive past ten years with the release of the five movies, but although they have now come to an end, we can’t be too sad as they brought in a combined $4.38billion (£3.14billion) from ticket sales alone.

But despite this, it does look like there will be no new Transformers movies for the foreseeable future.

However it’s not all bad news, as we do believe that a Bumblebee spin-off is still very much full steam ahead, and once this is released, Cinema Blend has reported that both Hasbro and Paramount have got something else up their sleeve.

Every cloud has a silver lining after all.

Although there is no solid word on this, rumours started to circulate when Hasbro (a company that have been making Transformer toys since day one) told TFW 2005 at the Toy Fair 2018 Hasbro Investor Preview, that Paramount is bringing in a new team to ‘reset’ the Transformers film franchise.

It was also reported that Hasbro will have more say over the movies, including which ones are green-lit.

Not only do we have this to look forward to, but there are four other Hasbro-Paramount movies confirmed including the reboot G.I. Joe, Micronauts, Dungeons & Dragons and an untitled event film.

Apparently Dungeons & Dragons will stand on its own, but the G.I. Joe reboot and Micronauts will both inhabit the same world, which probably means more gigantic robots!

We guess we will have to wait and see.

Bumblebee is set to be released on 21 December this year.

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10 of the best biopics to watch on Netflix

10 of the best biopics to watch on Netflix
These stories are pretty epic (Picture: REX/Shutterstock)

Over the last few weeks, we’ve seen the real-life stories of Winston Churchill (Darkest Hour), P.T. Barnum (The Greatest Showman) and poker entrepreneur Molly Bloom (Molly’s Game) make it onto the big screen.

And this Friday (February 23) sees the release of I, Tonya, the Oscar-nominated drama based on disgraced ice skater Tonya Harding.

10 great straight-to-DVD movies on Netflix (Jon O'Brien)The 10 best straight-to-DVD films on Netflix

But there are plenty of fascinating biopics on Netflix too.

From shock jocks and tech geniuses to daredevils and hardened criminals, here’s a look at 10 of the finest.

Private Parts

A biopic with a difference, Private Parts saw its subject, US shock jock Howard Stern, take on the role himself.

Charting his rise from socially awkward teen to one of the most unfiltered radio personalities in all of America, this 1997 comedy no doubt stretches the truth a little.

But as long as you’re not too easily offended, it remains a thoroughly entertaining and, at times, strangely endearing celebrity tale.

Steve Jobs

Adopting an interesting approach to the biopic, Steve Jobs follows the titular tech genius at just three pivotal points of his career: the launch of the Apple Macintosh, the NeXT computer and the iMAC.

No stranger to playing real-life figures, Michael Fassbender justifies his Oscar nomination with a commanding performance, which makes you forget that he bears no resemblance to the late Jobs.

Danny Boyle’s energetic direction and Aaron Sorkin’s witty script, meanwhile, turn what could have been very dry subject matter into a genuinely gripping drama.

Nowhere Boy

Sam Taylor-Wood’s biopic of John Lennon also ignores the entire life story approach and instead focuses solely on the Beatle’s adolescence.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who met future wife Wood on the set, makes for a convincing young Lennon in a moving coming-of-age tale that offers an intriguing look at life before the Fab Four.

Bronson

Sporting a shaven head, thick handlebar moustache and an extra 40 pounds in weight, an unrecognisable Tom Hardy certainly committed to his leading role in this insight into notorious criminal Charles Bronson.

As you’d expect from a film about a man once dubbed the most violent prisoner in Britain, Bronson isn’t for the faint-hearted.

But, if you can stomach all the hyper-stylised fights, full-frontal nudity and generally psychotic behaviour, Hardy’s tour-de-force performance is a sight to behold.

Eddie The Eagle

An almost unrecognisable Taron Egerton dons a pair of thick-rimmed glasses and ginger beard to play one of the UK’s ultimate sporting underdogs in this affectionate biopic.

The eponymous ski jumper may have once been considered a laughing stock for his limited prowess on the slopes, but Eddie The Eagle will leave you with nothing but total admiration for his determination to become an Olympic hero.

Capote

One of two films about the legendary novelist – and the story behind his non-fiction book, In Cold Blood – to arrive within the space of 12 months, Capote beat Infamous to the punch, raking in over $49m at the box-office and five Oscar nominations.

One of those nominations, Best Actor, turned into a win thanks to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s uncanny portrayal of the flamboyant Truman Capote.

But Catherine Keener and Clifton Collins Jr also impress as his longtime friend and murderous love interest, respectively.

This is an absorbing drama, which poses important questions about ethics, morality and art.

Trumbo

Bryan Cranston was also recognised at the Oscars – although he lost out to Leonardo DiCaprio – for playing a writer who rose to fame in the 1950s.

The Breaking Bad star fully convinces as Dalton Trumbo – the hugely successful screenwriter who became blacklisted by Hollywood for his political beliefs – in a compelling look at a profession, which can often be tough to make entertaining on the big screen.

Love & Mercy

John Cusack appears to be stuck in direct-to-DVD hell, but he did briefly manage to escape in 2015 with an emotive performance in this Brian Wilson biopic.

Cusack (playing the beloved Beach Boy in the 1980s) is matched by Paul Dano (who portrays him in the 1960s) in a decade-hopping drama that, like much of Wilson’s work, is multi-layered, bittersweet and beautifully melancholic.

Into The Wild

The name Christopher McCandless might not be as familiar as most of the real-life figures represented on this list, but his story is no less gripping.

Here, Emile Hirsch plays the college graduate who decides to give up his career ambitions for a life on the road, which ultimately ends in an entirely avoidable tragedy.

Bleed For This

Bleed For This may tick off every cliche in the sports drama guidebook, but you still can’t help but be impressed by Miles Teller’s committed turn, and the journey his real life character takes.

Teller stars as Vinny Pazienza, a world champion boxer who, after breaking his neck in a near-fatal car accident, is told he may never walk again.

Of course, the man nicknamed ‘The Pazmanian Devil’ was never going to listen to doctor’s orders, and this tale chronicles his attempts to return to the ring for one last fight.

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‘Is Sylvester Stallone dead?’: Sly reassures fans he is ‘alive and well’ after death hoax

‘Is Sylvester Stallone dead?': Sly reassures fans he is 'alive and well' after death hoax
Sly ain’t dead (Picture: FilmMagic)

Sylvester Stallone has reassured fans he is ‘alive and well and happy and healthy’ after an internet hoax claiming he was dead began to make the rounds.

‘Please ignore this stupidity… Alive and well and happy and healthy… Still punching!, he shared on Instagram alongside a grab of the alleged hoax.

A second post saw him remind fans to ‘always grab LIFE by the throat and do not let go until you succeed!!!’

The hoax had first done the rounds 18 months ago but many fans were still left worried about the legendary actor.

It first emerged in September 2016, claiming the Hollywood icon had died; a message had appeared on Facebook claiming Stallone had been found dead at his Los Angeles home after a battle with prostrate cancer, however, it soon transpired that it was a sick hoax when users found it was linked to a website notorious for sharing celebrity death hoaxes.

The same site had previously claimed the likes of Vin Diesel, Jaden Smith, Angelina Jolie, Nicolas Cage, Jim Carrey and John Cena had all died.

US actresses praise British ‘sisters’ for standing behind Times Up at 2018 Baftas

US actresses praise British 'sisters' for standing behind Times Up at 2018 Baftas
British women have made a stand against harassment and sexual abuse (Picture: Getty)

US actresses including Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington have praised their UK ‘sisters’ for leading the Times Up charge at the 2018 Baftas.

‘Time. Is. Up. And we are global! #TimesUp #BAFTA,’ tweeted Kerry on Sunday night in reply to a tweet from Bafta which read: ‘Tonight, black is not just for the red carpet.

‘Tonight, at the #BAFTAs and beyond, we wear black to say #TIMESUP on workplace abuse, inequality and harassment. Tonight, join us in your homes, your community and on social media as we show the world #WHYWEWEARBLACK.’

Reese, who was behind the Times Up movement in the US, added: ‘So happy to see my sisters making @TIMESUPNOW a Global Campaign.’

Over 190 women working in the entertainment industry, including actresses Emma Watson, Jodie Whittaker, Naomie Harris and Sienna Miller, signed their names to a powerful open letter in support of Time’s Up ahead of the 2018 Baftas.

Led by Gemma Arterton, the letter was also signed by Carey Mulligan, Rebel Wilson, Emilia Clarke and Olivia Colman, and it calls for an end to harassment and abuse due to an ‘imbalance of power’ across all industries.

The women have also funded a new fund, the UK Justice and Equality Fund which, like Time’s Up, aims to create a network of expert advice and support, and to provide access to legal support for anyone subjected to sexual violence and abuse at work.

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Frances McDormand praises Three Billboards-style activism in rousing Baftas acceptance speech

Frances McDormand praises Three Billboards-style activism in Baftas acceptance speech
Frances McDormand spoke about Three Billboards’ cultural significance (Picture: BBC One)

Anyone’s who’s been keeping an eye on the awards circuit this season will know that Frances McDormand is one of the greatest women in Hollywood, who also happens to make some of the best speeches.

And her speech at this year’s Baftas ceremony was no different, but had an added poignancy after many people took inspiration from her winning film, Three Billboards Outside Missouri, for their own political protests in recent weeks.

The 60-year-old took the time in her speech to let the public know that she recognised and applauded the ‘positive public discourse’ which the film has inspired.

Frances McDormand praises Three Billboards-style activism in Baftas acceptance speech
Frances McDormand is proud of the activism her film has inspired (Picture: BAFTA/REX/Shutterstock)

‘I want to say that I appreciate a well-organised act of civil disobedience, and I am thrilled that activists all over the world have been inspired by the set decoration of the Three Billboards in Martin’s film,’ the actress said. ‘And [who] have taken to the streets, and let it be a part of the positive public discourse that’s happening.’

‘And I want thank Blueprint Productions and FilmFour and Fox Searchlight for carefully shepherding Martin’s films, Guillermo’s [Del Toro] films, because not only are they entertaining, they encourage a longer and broader cultural conversation.’

The film sees Frances’ character, Mildred, attempt to chastise the local police in the fictional town Ebbing with three huge billboards for not solving the rape and murder of her daughter.

In recent weeks many have used the powerful visual technique in real life, too.

Frances McDormand praises Three Billboards-style activism in Baftas acceptance speech
The billboards passed through London earlier this week (Picture: Justice4Grenfell/PA Wire)

In London earlier this week, Grenfell tower protesters used the iconic movie scene to urge authorities not to forget the tragedy.

Activists called for justice for victims and survivors of the tower block blaze mounted their billboards on the back of lorries.

The signs read: ’71 dead. And still no arrests? How come?’

The same tactic was applied in Florida on Friday outside senator Marco Rubio’s office in response to the Parkland school shooting.

The red signs cruising around the Miami area said: ‘Slaughtered in school. And still no gun control? How come, Marco Rubio?’

The Hollywood veteran also addressed the Time’s Up movement and the fact she chose not to wear red to the event with classic McDormand flair.

‘As Martin said I have a little trouble with compliance,’ she said in reference to her colourful outfit, to which she receieved raucous cheers.

‘But I want you to know I stand in full solidarity with my sisters tonight in black.’

Got a story?

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