Saturday, 11 November 2017

AFM: Netflix swoops on 'Irreplaceable You' with Gugu Mbatha Raw, Michiel Huisman (exclusive) - Screendaily

Gugu mbatha raw, michiel huisman, kate mc kinnon europacorp wiki commons flickr abc
In a multi-million dollar deal, Netflix has swooped on world rights to romantic-drama Irreplaceable You, the feature directorial debut of former Veep producer and director Stephanie Laing. 
Belle star Gugu Mbatha Raw and Game Of Thrones actor Michiel Huisman play best friends and romantic soulmates whose lives come crashing down when one is given a terminal cancer diagnosis.
The stellar supporting cast includes Christopher Walken, Kate McKinnon, Jacki Weaver, Steve Coogan, Tim Simons and Claire Holt. 
Walken and the previously unannounced McKinnon, star of Ghostbusters and Saturday Night Live, will play characters in a cancer support group which is led by Steve Coogan’s character.

Read more: All the latest AFM news

Bess Wohl wrote the script. Jonathan Tropper, Farah Abushwesha, Matt Kaplan, Brian Robbins and Laing are producing. The Exchange was previously on board for sales.
The potential Sundance debut will be branded as a Netflix Original and will debut on the service next year as part of the streaming giant’s monster 2018, which is due to include 80 ‘originals’. 
Netflix snapped up the film earlier this year before seeing footage of the project. 
Mbatha Raw recently played in Miss Sloane and Beauty And The Beast and will next star in Ava DuVernay’s Disney fantasy A Wrinkle In Time and Bad Robot’s Cloverfield Movie. She also starred in the San Junipero episode of Netflix’s Black Mirror.
Huisman, who plays Daario Naharis in HBO’s Game Of Thrones, recently starred opposite Lily James in Mike Newell’s upcoming romance-drama The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

Monday, 30 October 2017

2014: Red Carpet: Gugu Mbatha-Raw Talks ‘Beyond the Lights’

Gugu Mbatha-Raw | Paula Schwartz Photo

Gugu Mbatha-Raw | Paula Schwartz Photo

Gugu Mbatha-Raw keeps her breakout star momentum going in Relativity’s “Beyond the Lights,” (read Jane’s review here), which had its New York premiere at the Regal Union Square Stadium.
The 31-year-old actress, so good earlier this year in “Belle” as a biracial woman raised in British aristocracy in slave-era England, is transformed into a hot Rihanna-like pop star in “Beyond the Lights,” written and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood (“The Secret Life of Bees”). Mbatha-Raw just nabbed a Gotham nomination for best actress for the role to find herself in the company of Julianne Moore and Scarlet Johansson.
Mbatha-Raw jetted in for the New York premiere from L.A., where the film celebrated its premiere the previous night. She looked transformed again, from the sexy pop diva of the film into a 1940’s Hollywood glamour queen in a green Grecian over-the-should gown, her hair wavy over her forehead.
Co-stars Nate Parker and Colson “Machine Gun Kelly” Baker joined her on the red carpet, along with writer-director Gina Prince-Bythewood and her husband Reggie Rock Bythewood, who is also a producer on the film. (Minnie Driver, who is terrific as a manipulative “momager” and has the best scene in the film where their two characters have a blow out argument, didn’t make the New York premiere.)

Gugu Mbatha-Raw | Paula Schwartz Photo
Gugu Mbatha-Raw | Paula Schwartz Photo

Rivaling Mbatha-Raw for star power was Knicks star Amar’e Stoudemire, the film’s producer, who brought along a contingent of his basketball pals. The basketball star and first-time producer did heavy duty promoting of the film on the red carpet. Ryan Kavanaugh, Relativity’s CEO and Founder, said a few words before the screening and gave a Happy Birthday shout out to Stoudemire, who introduced the film along with the director. (Stoudemire’s birthday was later celebrated at the afterparty at 409; Kavanaugh gave a short speech and then sparklers were lit and a gigantic silver cake with “32” on it wheeled out.)
Celebrity guests on the red carpet also included India Arie and Justin Forsett from the Baltimore Ravens.
On the red carpet, I chatted with Mbatha-Raw, who is as warm and pleasant as she is gorgeous:

Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Machine Gun Kelly | Paula Schwartz Photo
Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Machine Gun Kelly | Paula Schwartz Photo

About the singing and dancing scenes where the actress shines:
“It’s been such a gift of a role. I grew up singing and dancing as a child, but more sort of musical theater style and classical dancing, so for me to be able to embrace this hip-hop style…
“You know, I had a lot of help. Gina surrounded me with some wonderful people in the industry, not just herself, who’s had a background researching a lot of the hip-hop world, but also Laurieann Gibson, the choreographer (Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry), The Dream (Kanye West, Beyonce, Jay-Z), who wrote all the original music (Rihanna, Kanye West, Beyonce) and also Machine Gun Kelly, who’s here, who really is a rapper in the industry and brings so much charisma and authenticity because he really is from that world.
“So I had a lot of things to draw upon and felt very well supported by the research, because we knew about the movie, or I knew about the movie, for almost two years before we got to shoot it.”
On how she prepared for the sexy dance scenes and whether they were daunting:
“I felt very supported by the choreography. We rehearsed it, Laurieann Gibson, as I mentioned, created that whole routine and that was something we rehearsed in the studio in front of a mirror for many hours, and adding the elements of the hair, the makeup, the wigs, the amazing hair designs by Kim Kimble (Beyonce), and the costumes, of course, so we really were building this character on so many levels.
“Then it was just doing it and singing the song and projecting that energy into the lens, which was a new experience for me, because usually as an actress, you’re pretending the camera isn’t there. But obviously, for a music video in that style, you have to look directly into the camera. And that was scary initially, but I had to get over it.”
About her upcoming projects, including “Jupiter Ascending,” the Wachowski siblings sci-fi flick, co-starring Eddie Redmayne, Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum.
“I just have a small role in that, but it’s a really exciting movie. I’m looking forward to seeing it because I haven’t seen it yet. It’s sort of an epic space adventure, and I play a character’s who’s half human, half deer.
“I also shot a movie in the summer called ‘The Whole Truth’ with another female director called Courtney Hunt. I don’t know when that’s coming out yet (Renee Zellweger and Keanu Reeves also star), and I’ve just started work on another project that’s called ‘Compassion’ with Will Smith about brain injuries in the NFL.”

Sunday, 29 October 2017

2014: Essence magazine - Gugu Mbatha-Raw on Faith, Spirituality, and Finding Peace Through Nature

Gugu Mbatha-Raw
Frazer Harrison/BAFTA LA
The Beyond The Lights star finds joy and peace in the most unexpected moments.
Jolie A. Doggett
Nov, 21, 2014
On the heels of her critically-acclaimed portrayal of an illegitimate biracial girl born to an aristocratic family in Belle (2013), British actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw currently stars in the romantic drama, Beyond The Lights and is fast rising to become Hollywood's most exciting new talent. She recently spoke with about her spirituality, her faith, and how she relies on stillness and nature to keep her spirits up.
Do you consider yourself to be a spiritual person?
I would definitely say I am spiritual, you know. I was born and raised a Catholic and baptized at school. I am definitely a very spiritual person; I think you sort of have to be in life, and in this industry, and as a woman, and as an actress. I think it’s important to develop a strong sense of self, because there’s lots of things that can buffet you along the way in the industry, and in life in general.

How do you stay grounded?
I am a big yogi. I love my yoga, and I meditate. For me, that’s really important to stay grounded and I am trying to be more committed with the meditation. I love to spend time in nature. I’m a Taurus, like an earth person, and I’m from the countryside, so for me, whenever I am living and working in urban areas, like New York, or L.A., parts of L.A., it’s important for me to kind of just get outside and walk and hike in greenery and by the beach if I can.

When are you happiest?
I feel like I’m happy all the time! I am happiest with the simplest things: a cup of tea in the morning, and sitting outside and listening to the birds. I always get really happy when I see a hummingbird in L.A. I think that’s the best thing about L.A., to be honest.

Can you recall a recent moment when you were reminded to be grateful?
All the time, you know. I was at the Met Ball, this incredibly glamorous experience, you know, fancy dresses, and really, really decadent dinners, and beautiful, beautiful people everywhere, and really talented, famous actors and to me. It was like a Cinderella moment, because I’d never even been to a ball before, let alone one of that scale. So I was grateful to be [there].
Who has been your greatest teacher in life?
I guess my mom. I am an only child, and I am very close to my dad, but I did grow up in a single-parent household, so that’s quite an intense bond, mother-daughter relationship. I definitely sort of credit her with instilling me with confidence, and guiding me in life. 
Gugu Mbatha-Raw stars in Beyond the Lights, currently in theaters.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Kate Beckinsale, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Damson Idris Land ‘Farming’ Drama

Kate Beckinsale, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Damson Idris Land ‘Farming’ Drama

Kate BeckinsaleGugu Mbatha-Raw, and Damson Idris are starring in the British drama “Farming” with shooting said to start this August in the U.K. and Nigeria.
Nigerian-British writer and director Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje is directing from his own screenplay based on his autobiographical story, “Farming.” The script was developed in the Sundance Film Institute and chronicles Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s own coming-of-age story growing up fostered by a white working class family in the U.K.
Idris, star of John Singelton’s upcoming FX series “Snowfall,” will play the lead. Beckinsale will portray his foster mother, a stern, hard-loving, and, at times, self-serving woman.
Michael London and Janice Williams, who teamed on “Trumbo,” are producing through Groundswell Productions together with Francois Ivernel (“The Queen”) through Montebello Productions, Charles de Rosen, Miranda Ballesteros, and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. HanWay Films is handling international sales and distribution and is selling the film in Cannes.
WME Global is overseeing the U.S. sale
During the 1960s and 1980s, tens of thousands of Nigerian children were farmed out to white working class families in the U.K. But as they were in private foster care, many of them were never registered with social services, making them invisible to the authorities. Many were never reunited with their birth parents.
In the film, the lead character is sent to the U.K. by his parents in hopes of achieving a better life. Instead, he becomes the feared leader of a white skinhead gang in 1980s England. When all seems lost and he spirals into self-destruction, a benevolent teacher (played by Mbatha-Raw) offers him one last chance at redemption.
“I’m thrilled to be finally bringing this important story to the world, which will serve as the voice of a forgotten generation,” says Akinnuoye-Agbaje.
Akinnuoye-Agbaje is represented by APA and The Artists Partnership, Untitled Entertainment, and Ziffren Brittenham LLP. Idris is represented by Identity Agency Group, WME, and Elevate Entertainment.  Beckinsale is represented by UTA, while Mbatha-Raw by Curtis Brown, CAA and Authentic Talent and Literary Management. Idris, Beckinsale, and Mbatha-Raw are also represented by Hansen, Jacobson LLP.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Catherine Zeta-Jones, @CynthiaErivo, & Gugu Mbatha-Raw join The Children’s Monologues

Just announced! Catherine Zeta-Jones, , & Gugu Mbatha-Raw join The Children’s Monologues.

Dramatic Need, in collaboration with Carnegie Hall, presents

A One-Night-Only Theatrical Performance

The Children’s Monologues

Monday, November 13 at 7:30 PM
Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
Dramatic Need, in collaboration with Carnegie Hall, presents an unparalleled cast of Oscar, Tony, Emmy, and Grammy award-winners for a performance of stories of bravery, resilience, and triumph by South African children adapted by the world’s finest playwrights.
Directed by Academy Award winner Danny Boyle
Performance-only tickets start at $100; gala benefit tickets, including an after-party with the cast, start at $1,500.


Daveed Diggs
Daveed Diggs
Daniel Kaluuya
Daniel Kaluuya
Gugu Mbatha-Raw
Gugu Mbatha-Raw
James McAvoy
James McAvoy
Audra McDonald
Audra McDonald
Ewan McGregor
Ewan McGregor
Sienna Miller
Sienna Miller
Javier Munoz
Javier Muñoz
Trevor Noah
Trevor Noah
Susan Sarandon
Susan Sarandon
Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron
Catherine Zeta-Jones
Catherine Zeta-Jones

Special Musical Guests

Cynthia Erivo
Little Simz
Esperanza Spalding

Via Vyndal Pantsula Dance Crew
New York City Youth Ensemble
Additional guests to be announced


Monologues adapted by N’gozi Anyanwu, Zawe Ashton, Yael Farber, James Graham, David Hare, Joel Horwood, Amy Jephta, Dennis Kelly, Neil LaBute, Jamie Minoprio, Mongiwekhaya, Dominique Morisseau, Lynn Nottage, Tom Stoppard, Jack Thorne, and Laura Wade
Visual art by Lady Skollie, Tschabalala Self, and Abe Odedina

Event Leadership

Gala Co-Chairs
Blavatnik Family Foundation
Clarissa and Edgar Bronfman, Jr.
Valentino D. Carlotti
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Kirsh Foundation
Aisha and Gbenga Oyebode
Sana H. Sabbagh
Hope and Robert F. Smith
Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas