Interviews, Magazine Scans, and other project updates
Posted on
Sep 15, 2022

Interviews, Magazine Scans, and other project updates

Good day, Blanchett fans!

We have compiled updates on other Cate Blanchett-related projects and causes she supports, ranging from interviews, magazine scans, and recent or upcoming event appearances. You can check them below.

 

— UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, Cate Blanchett has penned an piece for Politico urging global leaders to do more for the Rohingya refugees.

It’s more important than ever that we don’t look away, despite other emerging humanitarian and refugee crises in the world.

Gul Zahar, a young Rohingya woman, was forced to flee her home in western Myanmar’s Rakhine State. Escaping brutality and widespread abuse, she and around 200,000 fellow Rohingya refugees sought safety in Bangladesh. That was in 1978.

After returning home, another wave of violence against the Rohingya forced her to seek safety in Bangladesh once more. That was in 1992.

Many years later, Gul and her four-generation family were among the 720,000 Rohingya who made that same desperate journey to safety, yet again forced from their homes by violence. Trekking through jungles and mountains and crossing the river, it was one of the largest and fastest refugee influxes the world had seen for decades.

That was five years ago, in 2017.

Today, over 925,000 Rohingya refugees live in the densely populated camps near Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Over 75 percent are women and children.

The Rohingya are the largest stateless community in the world.

Although they have lived in Myanmar for generations, they aren’t recognized as citizens. And they face a host of discriminatory practices limiting their daily lives, in addition to the violence and persecution carried out against them.

When I visited Bangladesh in 2018 in my role as a goodwill ambassador for the U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR), I was not prepared for the depth of suffering that I saw.

I witnessed mothers enduring the unending pain of seeing their children live through these experiences. I sat with countless refugee children who had endured brutality and uncertainty, as I pictured my own children safe at home, joyful and carefree.

Following the influx in 2017, the emergency response to the refugee crisis, led by the government and people of Bangladesh, was exemplary. With the help of the international community, they provided medical assistance, food and relief items, and built makeshift shelters. Rohingya refugees were registered and issued with identity documentation — the first many had received in their lives.

Over time, however, the camps have developed their own fragile ecosystem, with their health care, water and sanitation facilities becoming severely challenged.

Rohingya refugees themselves play a vital role as the first responders in their community, including in the areas of emergency preparedness and disaster response, health, education, as well as community response and mobilization. During the COVID-19 pandemic, for instance, refugee volunteers took the lead in informing their community about health and hygiene, monitored signs of illness and connected refugees with critical health services. Their ingenious efforts saved countless lives.

Five years since that latest mass influx from Myanmar to Bangladesh, the collective effort in responding to the ongoing Rohingya refugee crisis — and the role undertaken by Rohingya refugees themselves — should be commended.

But despite this acknowledgment, we mustn’t be allowed to forget that the Rohingya shouldn’t be refugees at all — not the women, men and children who fled in 2017, nor those who fled in the successive waves of violence in previous decades.

The protracted exile of the Rohingya is simply unacceptable and unsustainable.

Diminishing hopes of returning home are pushing increasing numbers of Rohingya refugees, including children, to undertake perilous boat journeys in search of a future. Placing themselves at the mercy of smugglers and the treacherous waters of the Bay of Bengal, they are at risk of dehydration, starvation, physical and sexual abuse, and death. They do so, as many feel that they have little choice.

Today, it is more important than ever that we don’t look away from Rohingya, despite other emerging humanitarian and refugee crises in the world.

We must continue to support Bangladesh and other host communities in enabling Rohingya refugees to live full and dignified lives in exile. This includes providing them with greater access to education, skills training and opportunities for earning livelihoods.

Rohingya refugees, in particular the large proportion of youth among them, are resilient and resourceful. They want to rebuild their lives and ensure they are prepared for the future — including a return to their homes.

It is vital the international community continues to press for the rights of Rohingya in Myanmar.

They long for their homeland. They want to return but cannot do so unless conditions are safe, unless they can exercise their fundamental human rights — the right to move freely within their own country, the right to services such as education, livelihood and health care, and a clear pathway to citizenship — the rights so many of us take for granted.

In a conversation she had with the UNHCR in 2018, Gul had made clear what her wishes were: “I want to die on my soil,” she said.

Heartbreakingly, Gul passed away last year at the age of 94 in Bangladesh, her deepest yearning unrealized.

A life lived in limbo.

 

— Cate is also a council member of Earthshot Prize, which is “a global prize for the environment, designed to incentivise change and help to repair our planet over the next ten years”. There is going to be a summit in partnership with Bloomberg Philanthropies where Cate is confirmed as a speaker. It will be held on September 21st from 8:00am-12:30pm ET at The Plaza Hotel in New York City.

The Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit

The Earthshot Prize and Bloomberg Philanthropies previewed confirmed speakers and programming for The Earthshot Innovation Summit, which will take place on the morning of September 21, 2022 at The Plaza Hotel in New York City. The Summit, hosted by Michael R. Bloomberg, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions, will bring together heads of state, government and civil society leaders, philanthropists, business executives, and grassroots climate activists from around the world to spotlight emerging, systems-changing solutions and showcase the critical need to turbocharge ground-breaking climate innovations to address the world’s most pressing environmental challenges.

Global Australian Awards 2022

Cate alongside her friend and co-host of Climate of Change podcast, Danny Kennedy, were presenters at this year’s Global Australian Award. You can watch them present at around 43:19.

Global Goals Yearbook 2022

Vanity Fair European Edition

Click images for higher resolution

Click the images to open the scans.

Vanity Fair France – September 2022

Vanity Fair Italy – September 2022

Vanity Fair Spain – September 2022

Film Updates

— Another movie with Cate that will be released this year is the stop-motion version of Pinocchio directed by Guillermo Del Toro and Mark Gustafson. Three episodes of Documentary Now premiered at Toronto International Film Festival last weekend.

On a sadder news, Pedro Almodóvar has pulled out of directing job in A Manual for Cleaning Women but Cate is still attached to star and produce under Dirty Films.

Meanwhile, TÁR continues to be part of film festival lineups. It will have it’s Australian premiere at Adelaide Film Festival, US West Coast premiere at Mill Valley Film Festival, it is also part of Orcas Island Film Festival lineup. There is a concept album to be released in October 2022 where Cate can be seen and heard conducting a rehearsal of Dresden Orchestra. Cate also did an interview with Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter while she was in Venice at the beginning of this month, the movie will be released on October 23rd in Sweden.

Pinocchio

Cate voiced the monkey, Spazzatura. The movie will have it’s world premiere at London Film Festival on October 15th. You can buy tickets here.

Documentary Now

Over the weekend, three episodes from the new season of IFC’s iconic mockumentary series Documentary Now! premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).  And during a post-screening Q&A, it was revealed that we have Australia’s own Cate Blanchett to thank for its long awaited return.

In front of a sold out audience at the Scotiabank Cinemas, directors Alex Buono, Rhys Thomas, and co-creator and series regular Fred Armisen – all of whom met in the writer’s room on Saturday Night Live – talked about how Cate, who also appeared in the third series of the mockumentary, reached out expressing her interest in parodying an obscure British TV documentary.

Cate had taken a shining to the 1994 BBC documentary, Three Salons at the Seaside, which she discovered with her hair & makeup team while filming her FX series Mrs. America in Toronto, Canada.

The Cate Blanchett episode in question – “Two Hairdressers in Bagglyport”, which screened at TIFF – was filmed over four days at the original location of the documentary in Blackpool – redressed to match its original time period.

Having seen the episode, which unfolds like a beautifully written stage play, I can safely say that the persistence of Blanchett paid off – it’s one of the finest of the series to date. And, simultaneously, may be the most obscure documentary they’ve lovingly parodied.

Pedro Almodóvar departs A Manual for Cleaning Women

Oscar-winning Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar will not be making his first English-language feature directorial debut with A Manual for Cleaning Women, which has Cate Blanchett set to star and produce under her Dirty Films, Deadline has learned.

The filmmaker finally had all the elements to realize the magnitude of this future production. However, he came to the decision that he’s not ready to tackle such a monumental project in English. A search for another director is underway.

The feature project was first announced back in January based on Lucia Berlin’s 43-part collection of short stories, examining the lives of women working a wide variety of demanding jobs.

“It has been a very painful decision for me,” Almodóvar tells Deadline. “I have dreamt of working with Cate for such a long time. Dirty Films has been so generous with me this whole time and I was blinded by excitement, but unfortunately, I no longer feel able to fully realize this film.”

Dirty Films producers Blanchett, Andrew Upton, and Coco Francini tell us, “We have the utmost respect for Pedro and his extraordinary body of work, and while the stars may not have aligned this time, we hope to collaborate with Pedro and El Deseo on another project in the future. Dirty Films’ passion for A Manual for Cleaning Women and Lucia Berlin’s unique and searing voice – full of danger, joyousness and loss – has not dimmed, and we are excited to continue this project with our partners at New Republic.”

TÁR at Film Festivals

Mill Valley Film Festival World Cinema Lineup. Showings on October 7th and 8th, tickets can be booked here.

Australian premiere on October 21st as part of Adelaide Film Festival Special Presentation lineup. Tickets here.

Orcas Island Film Festival runs from October 6th-10th, festival passes are now on sale but no scheduled showing yet for TÁR.

TÁR (Music from and inspired by the motion picture)

TÁR concept album is set to be released on October 21st, an LP version will be released on January 20th 2023. You can pre-order at Deutsche Grammophon, JPC, Roan Records or Amazon.

Deutsche Grammophon presents Hildur Guðnadóttir’s exciting new film project – a groundbreaking concept album for Todd Field’s new movie TÁR, starring Cate Blanchett in the title role.

The multi-faceted concept album features music from and inspired by the movie, including a series of stunning new tracks by Guðnadóttir, as well as extracts from major works by Elgar and Mahler. It complements the film by presenting completed, real-life versions of the music on which we see the fictional protagonist Lydia Tár working. One of the aims of the album is to reveal something of the complex process that goes on behind orchestral rehearsals and recordings.

“The tracks, like the film, are meant to invite the listener to experience the messiness involved in the making of music.” Todd Field

Written and directed by three-time Oscar-nominated filmmaker Field, TÁR tells the story of high-powered composer-conductor Lydia Tár, played by Cate Blanchett. The two-time Oscar winner immersed herself in every aspect of her character’s life and can be seen – and heard on the DG album – conducting rehearsals of a Mahler symphony with extraordinary skill. Her fellow cast members include talented young British-German cellist Sophie Kauer, whose playing also features on the concept album.

This is a Google translated interview from Swedish to English.

Cate Blanchett: “There’s a lot of unresolved anger in the wake of MeToo”

Almost 25 years ago, Cate Blanchett came to Venice for the first time with “Elizabeth”, where she made an unforgettable portrait of the 16th-century regent who “married England”. Now the Australian Hollywood star is back at the Lido with another majestic full-length portrait of a woman with enormous power in her world.

In Todd Field’s magnetic “Tár”, Blanchett plays a fictional star conductor who has mentor Leonard Bernstein at her back, stands at the peak of her career as a celebrated composer and is the first female chief conductor of the prestigious Berlin Symphony Orchestra. A demanding recording of Mahler’s Fifth Symphony is at hand. Lydia Tár is certainly married to the orchestra’s female concertmaster (played by the German Nina Hoss) but is much more loyal to her position of power – which she exploits wildly in private – than her wife.

Learning to conduct believably was the least of the challenges with “Tár”, says Blanchett.

– For me, “Tár” is not really so much about the conducting itself. For Lydia, it’s like breathing. It was simply about finding the right way to breathe. But it’s clear that I studied many conductors that I became quite obsessed with, from Carlos Kleiber who had such a tormented and ambivalent approach to his work – to women like Antonia Brica, Marian Alsop and my compatriot Simone Young, says Cate Blanchett at a hotel room with sea view on the festival island Lido.

She is dressed in a white summer suit that elegantly mirrors the expensive tailored suits her character wears in the film. Speaks enthusiastically in a voice that is slightly higher than Lydia’s deep voice.

– The most important thing was to understand the structures of the classical world and how orchestras work. It was so interesting to follow the development, from the autocratic times when the conductor’s word was law and then over the fall of the Berlin Wall when more democratic tendencies began to seep into this world as well. It’s clear that the classical music world is still very much about canon and hierarchies, but the dynamic has clearly changed.

Her character Lydia Tár stands in the middle of that process, and not unexpectedly ends up in a storm when she not only manipulates younger women for her own needs, but also suppresses students who question the canon, like Bach, for reasons of identity politics.

Was it time for a reverse method drama?

– There is a lot of unresolved anger to explore in the wake of MeToo, and it is something we are far from done with. The system still needs to be fundamentally changed. The cancel culture is part of this process. But for me it is still only one aspect of “Tár”. Todd, who also wrote the screenplay, did a huge amount of research for the film and I think he has found mined ground that is very exciting.

To the now classic question of whether you can separate the author from the work, Blanchett answers with an anecdote from the early nineties when she had just graduated from acting school in Australia.

– It is in many ways a generational issue. At 22, I was cast in a production of David Mamet’s “Oleanna” and was full of strong opinions about gender and power. The first time I read the play I threw it at the wall. Second and third time too. When we finally played it, it became an incredibly exciting and challenging debate among the audience. And probably a lot of divorces, laughs Blanchett.

– The lesson from that is that if we are to avoid everything that is controversial or disturbing in art, or authors who have behaved questionably, then we miss out on a lot, both experiences and a significant critical debate. God knows what went on in Picasso’s studio, but “Guérnica” is still one of the world’s most important works of art, and so on.

What is “Tár” above all about, for you?

– It’s almost hard to say, there are so many layers to it. Lydia is both perpetrator and victim of a system where men have been kings for so long that she constantly has to prove that she is capable. But I woke up this morning and thought that it is above all a meditation on power, she says and elaborates:

– It is not only about institutional power but also creative power. Conductors often call the orchestra their instrument, but at the same time it’s about many different individuals, says Blanchett, who received praise for her interpretation of the role.

– “Tár” depicts the trend breaking that takes place in a world where the collective has been hierarchically controlled but where the individual and how one identifies oneself has become a new factor of power, she says.

Having long run theater in Sydney with her husband Andrew Upton, she can easily identify with institutional power, but personally she is more interested in creative power and how to convey it to others.

– Often the most creative thing you can say is “I don’t know, yet” when people demand answers. But there’s a funny difference depending on who’s saying it. If a male director says it, people find it exciting. But if it’s a female director, people just get nervous, ha ha.

– That’s one thing I really appreciate about “Tár”. It asks questions, but does not judge.

Cate Blanchett and Nina Hoss

 

Sources: Politico, Bloomberg, The AU Review, Dagens Nyheter

Disclaimer Set Photos & Glastonbury 2022
Posted on
Jul 16, 2022

Disclaimer Set Photos & Glastonbury 2022

Happy weekend, everyone!

We have our first look at Cate Blanchett as Catherine Ravenscroft in the upcoming Apple TV+ limited series Disclaimer which is directed by Alfonso Cuarón. They were filming at Portobello Road in Notting Hill, London on Friday.

Last month, Cate attended Glastonbury Festival. She was seen watching the set of HAIM with her husband Andrew Upton. She also watched the set of Sir Paul McCartney and was interviewed by BBC. You can watch the interview below.

On set of Alfonso Cuarón’s Disclaimer

Filming of Disclaimer at Notting Hill

Glastonbury 2022

 

 

Cate Blanchett on ABC 90 Celebrate
Posted on
Jun 16, 2022

Cate Blanchett on ABC 90 Celebrate

Good day, Blanchett fans!

Cate Blanchett is set to be featured in the live two-hour entertainment TV event, ABC 90 Celebrate! She has appeared in a few of ABC programmes: Police Rescue, G.P., Heartland, Rake, and most recently in #StatelessTV which she co-created and co-produced.

A first look footage for Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio was shown at Annecy Film Festival and VR project, Evolver is still showing at Tribeca Film Festival. Read a review on Evolver from Independent below.

ABC 90 Celebrate!

ABC has announced a stellar lineup of famous faces set to feature in the live two-hour entertainment television event, ABC 90 Celebrate! Airing Thursday, 30 June at 8.00 pm on ABC TV and ABC iview.

Hosted by Zan Rowe, Tony Armstrong and Craig Reucassel, the broadcast will feature an exciting list of performers and presenters who are set to celebrate the value and role the ABC has held in connecting Australians for 90 years.

Throughout the evening, audiences can expect live crosses to different locations, studios and community events across the country.

Taking audiences through a nostalgic journey of the programmes and people that have made an impact across the 90 years will be an abundance of Australian entertainment legends.

The list includes Adam Liaw, Amy Shark, Annabel Crabb, Bjorn Ulaveus, Bryce Mills, Cate Blanchett, Christine Anu, Daniel Browning, Hunter Page-Lochard, Ebony Boadu, Kev Carmody, Leah Purcell, Leigh Sales, Magda Szubanski, Michael Hing, Molly Meldrum, Namilla Benson, Richard Roxburgh, Roy & HG, Ross Wilson, Steph Tisdell, Wil Anderson, and many more.

Pinocchio

Guillermo Del Toro world premiered eight minutes of footage, finished and unfinished, from his stop-motion fable about a wooden boy with a borrowed soul.

Even without the full title “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio,” the film’s artistic voice would be unmistakable. In the first excerpt screened we find Geppetto encountering the newly living Pinocchio for the first time. The characters are unlike any versions we’ve seen prior. The inventor, for one, seems thoroughly soused (or at least terribly hung-over), picking himself off the floor and stumbling across his creaky workshop with bloodshot eyes.

Only something is stirring, something is upstairs, and that something announces itself with a fright. As the wooden puppet moves out of the shadows, it does so not with the upright footing of a boy but with the spindly movements of a bug. Newly brought to life, Pinocchio moves at first like a spider, using his arms as two extra legs before (presumably) learning that in order to be a real boy one should aim to be bipedal.

Cate Blanchett takes us inside the human body in an epic VR experience

Stepping through a blacked-out revolving door in Manhattan’s Financial District and into Evolver, a virtual reality exhibit about human breath, the audience is confronted by a dark concrete room. There’s an eerie, amplified natural soundscape of babbling brooks and passing storms and enormous backlit pictures that feel familiar, but with closer scrutiny prove ineffable. An indistinct image could be a Hubble telescope capture of the stars or maybe a tree’s underground roots, or even a network of human capillaries, magnified to a scale that renders the mundane fact of circulation alarming. This is, of course, the point.

Created by the London-based art collective Marshmallow Laser Feast, luxuriously narrated by Cate Blanchett, and co-executive produced by Terrence Malick, Evolver drops its audience inside the human body on the journey of an inhale. Here we follow the flow of oxygen from the outside world, through our lungs, and eventually to our distant cells. But the impression of the exhibit – which had its world premiere last week at the Tribeca Film Festival – is far less sterile than its brief. Though based on biologically accurate renderings, the result is closer to painterly mimesis than precise simulation. There’s no way the inside of my body looks this spectral and astonishing.

The exhibit acknowledges that’s a trippy question to ask, and so our first ten minutes are spent in deliciously enveloping zero gravity chair sacs, functioning like a palate cleanser. Instead of bulky VR headsets, attendees are outfitted with pillowy headphones and invited to close their eyes. Cate Blanchett then huskily murmurs in your ear about the relationship between your body and the world beyond it.

Transitions are always messy in big, interactive exhibits, but being roused from Cate Blanchett’s seductive whisper to be tightly fitted with futuristic goggles was particularly unwelcome but quickly forgotten. In the main presentation, Blanchett’s voice is replaced by a moody, natured-inflected soundtrack by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, avant-garde artist Meredith Monk, late Icelandic composer Jo?hann Jo?hannsson and experimentalist Howard Skempton. It starts aloof and electronic and grows triumphantly grandiose. Visually, human breath streams and swirls around you like the Milky Way; blood vents as explosively as lava. The path of the molecules that appear to surround you can be modestly altered by swooping your hand across your body.

Virtual reality on this scale is disorienting; a watchful exhibition assistant had to save me from walking into a wall and later, another participant. It’s also stupefying – I struggled for words in the minutes immediately after and I’m told some visitors even cried. But Steel’s impossible question occasionally revisited me. Are you breathing the air, or is the wild world remaking itself in miniature inside you? Is circulation anything less beautiful than a brook that babbles within us?

Evolver won’t improve your anatomical understanding. Instead, it elevates the simple and involuntary fact of human respiration into something as extraordinary to look at as the world outside us. It accomplished something more startling than making me think about my own breath. It made me gasp.

Sources: MediaWeek; Variety; Independent

Disclaimer Update & Not Now, Not Ever Book
Posted on
Jun 14, 2022

Disclaimer Update & Not Now, Not Ever Book

Hi, everyone! It has been slow news day as we await for release of Cate’s projects this year and other news — according to Screen Daily the AppleTV+ series, Disclaimer, is still filming in London. On a more recent news, former Prime Minister (Australia) Julia Gillard is releasing a new book which would have a contribution from Cate and other feminist figures.

Disclaimer

Leslie Manville was recently announced as part of the cast of the 7-episode AppleTV+ series. Italian newspaper, il Fatto Quotidiano, is reporting that two episodes of the series will be filmed at Forte dei Marmi in Tuscany, Italy.

Here’s the list of characters the announced cast will be playing in the series:

Cate Blanchett – Catherine Ravenscroft; a successful and respected television documentary journalist whose work has been built on revealing the concealed transgressions of long-respected institutions.

Kevin Kline – Stephen Brigstocke; a widower who wrote an intriguing novel that was sent to Catherine Ravenscroft which reveals a story she had hoped was long buried in the past.

Sacha Baron Cohen – Robert Ravenscroft; Catherine’s husband who is a lawyer (role is not confirmed yet).

Kodi Smit-McPhee – Nicholas Ravenscroft; Catherine and Robert’s son (role is not confirmed yet).

Hoyeon Jung – Kim; Catherine’s assistant who is ambitious, hardworking and eager-to-please, she knows that working for Catherine is going to be her big break.

Louis Partridge – Jonathan Brigstocke; a teenager on his gap year traveling through Italy who allows himself to give in to his deeper desires with unexpected consequences.

Lesley Manville – Nancy Brigstocke, a woman devastated by her young son’s untimely death. Her life has been defined by her grief, and she lives a quiet life with her husband, Stephen.

Not Now, Not Ever Book

Julia Gillard has just announced her explosive new book Not Now, Not Ever set for release this year on 5 October 2022.

Ten years on from her famous Misogyny Speech, Gillard’s new book explores the history and culture of misogyny, while laying out a roadmap for the future. While the past ten years have undeniably seen many changes – and improvements – there is still a long way to go.

With contributions from several authors and experts, the book explores the reality of misogyny in 2022 and provides a look back at how the Misogyny Speech has inspired women since 2012.

With plenty to explore, the book is a well-rounded and highly-anticipated read for anyone hoping to understand the effects of misogyny on modern society. Kathy Lette looks into how the speech has resurfaced on TikTok, while Cate Blanchett, Brittany Higgins and more recall their first time hearing it. Next-generation feminists Sally Scales, Chanel Contos, and Caitlin Figuerado provide inspiring insight, and of course, the echoes of the rallying cry ring through each page: Not now, not ever!

Sources: ScreenDaily; il Fatto Quotidiano; Penguin Books; Variety

VR Project ‘Evolver’ narrated by Cate Blanchett
Posted on
Jun 9, 2022

VR Project ‘Evolver’ narrated by Cate Blanchett

Hi, everyone! The trailer for Evolver which is a “VR Journey of Life and Breath” has been released. The VR project is narrated by Cate Blanchett and is showing at Tribeca Film Festival. She is also an executive producer through Dirty Films.

Cate Blanchett (“Carol”) and Terrence Malick (“The Tree of Life”) have reteamed on “Evolver,” a VR free-roaming, music-filled interactive and transcendental experience which is world premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Produced by the artist collective Marshmallow Laser Feast (“We Live in an Ocean of Air”) in the U.K., Atlas V (“Spheres”) in France and Pressman Film (“The Crow”) in the U.S., “Evolver” is a pioneering experience taking audiences inside the landscape of the body, following the flow of oxygen through a branching ecosystem, to a single ‘breathing’ cell. The experience has been conceived to be replicated and sized up in festivals and museums around the world and can host up to 100 people at the same.

Veteran producer Edward R. Pressman is executive producing with his long-time friend Malick as well as Blanchett, Coco Francini and Andrew Upton through their banner Dirty Films. Pressman and Malick’s first creative collaboration dates back to 1973 with Malick’s feature debut “Badlands.”

Blanchett, who previously worked with Malick on “Knight of Cups” and “Voyage of Time,” was approached by the filmmaker to join “Evolver” and has given it a greater spiritual depth. Blanchett narrates the experience, starting meditation phase during which she reads a poem created by Daisy Lafarge and guides audiences as they connect with their own bodies and the natural world through a cycle of respiration.

“Voicing Evolver was not so much building a character but creating an atmosphere or a state of mind,” Blanchett told Variety. “Working with Marshmallow Laser Feast, I responded not only to the arresting visuals but the resonant poetry of Daisy Lafarge’s text,” Blanchett added.

Blanchett said “Evolver” shares similar themes as “Voyage of Time” as it reflects on the meaning of life. “It’s been an extraordinary thing to be in Terry’s orbit. The thrum of his world view is intoxicating and any chance to be in a dialogue with him I leap towards with open arms,” said Blanchett about reuniting with Malick. “Giving voice to ‘Voyage of Time’ was an eye-opening meditation and Evolver is a wonderful extension of that conversation,” said the Oscar-winning actor.

While Blanchett has voiced several animated features in the past, this marked her first time narrating a VR experiment.

“VR is obviously a much more immersive experience than conventional animation, which the Evolver team has harnessed to a spectacular degree.”

Blanchett described “Evolver” as an “immersive experience on a metaphysical level that” and said she thinks it will “take the participants on a dynamic journey as the work is simultaneously inward and outward facing, encouraging deep introspection and reflection but also inviting people to connect, not only to their own bodies but to the natural world around them.”

Source: Variety

 

 

 

Dirty Films with Origma 45 to produce Noora Niasari’s ‘Shayda’
Posted on
May 22, 2022

Dirty Films with Origma 45 to produce Noora Niasari’s ‘Shayda’

Happy Sunday, everyone!

Dirty Films is going to be producing another movie which is the directorial debut Iranian/Australian writer and director Noora Niasari. It will be led by Iranian actress Zar Amir-Ebrahimi.

Being sold in Cannes by HanWay Films, Niasari’s directorial debut follows a young Iranian mother who finds refuge in an Australian women’s shelter with her six-year-old daughter.

Iranian actress Zar Amir-Ebrahimi (Tehran Taboo, Morgen sind wir frei) is set to star in Shayda, the directorial debut of Iranian/Australian writer/director Noora Niasari. HanWay Films has come on board to handle international sales and distribution, while UTA Independent Film Group is representing the U.S. sale.

Shayda follows a young Iranian mother (Amir-Ebrahimi) and her six-year-old daughter who find refuge in an Australian women’s shelter during the two weeks of Iranian New Year (Nowrooz), which is celebrated as a time of renewal and re-birth. Aided by the strong community of women at the refuge, they seek their freedom in this new world of possibilities, only to find themselves facing the violence they tried so hard to escape.

Shayda is produced by Vincent Sheehan (The Hunter, Jasper Jones, Animal Kingdom, Lore) through his new production venture Origma 45. Cate Blanchett, Andrew Upton and Coco Francini at Dirty Films (Apples, Carol, Little Fish) are executive producers.

“We first encountered Noora’s talent watching her short films, The Phoenix and Tâm. We were blown away by her precise, emotionally-driven filmmaking and her capacity to draw out gripping performances,” said Dirty Films in a statement. “We are excited to be working alongside Vincent again to help Noora fulfil her bold and distinct vision for Shayda.”

Melbourne-based Niasari is well known for her award-winning short films including Waterfall which screened at the 66th Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) where it was nominated for best short film, Tâm and feature documentary Casa Antúnez.

Heads of production on the film will include cinematographer and Niasari’s closest collaborator, Sherwin Akbarzadeh (Stories From Oz). Osamah Sami (Ali’s Wedding), Leah Purcell (The Drover’s Wife: The Legend of Molly Johnson), Mojean Aria (The Enforcer), Jillian Nguyen (Expired) and Rina Mousavi (Alexander) will star alongside Amir-Ebrahimi. Production will commence on July 11 in Australia.

“We are delighted to be part of an incredible team supporting Noora Niasari’s feature debut,” said HanWay Films managing director Gabrielle Stewart. “Noora has written a beautiful piece that reflects much of her own experience of moving to Australia as a child. There is an intimacy to her storytelling that brings to life what it is to honor the traditions of the culture you have left behind as a mother raising her young child, whilst together bravely embracing a whole new one.”

Source: THR

Cate Blanchett greets ABC Australia on their anniversary; & boards VR project Evolver
Posted on
May 21, 2022

Cate Blanchett greets ABC Australia on their anniversary; & boards VR project Evolver

Hi, everyone!

Cate has sent a video message greeting ABC Australia on their 90 years. She has also signed on as executive producer, with her co-exec producers at Dirty Films – Andrew Upton and Coco Francini, for Evolver which will also be narrated by her and set to premiere at Tribeca Film Festival in June 2022.

Thank you to Erzsébet for the donation to the site.

Cate Blanchett boards Tribeca-bound VR project ‘Evolver’ as narrator and executive producer

Cate Blanchett is narrating virtual-reality project Evolver and has signed on as an executive producer alongside Terrence Malick and Edward R. Pressman.

Billed as a free-roaming, immersive journey through the breathing body, Evolver is world premiering in competition at the Tribeca Immersive programme at the 2022 Tribeca Festival where it will be presented at 120 Broadway from June 9-19.

The VR experience drops audiences inside the human body, following the flow of oxygen from first intake of breath.

Dirty Films’ Cate Blanchett, Coco Francini and Andrew Upton have boarded Evolver as executive producers. Fellow executive producers Edward R. Pressman and Terrence Malick first collaborated on the independent classic Badlands nearly 50 years ago.

Click the image for more information on the screening time

Sources: Screendaily; Tribeca

Cate Blanchett talks about addressing the climate crisis in a new podcast
Posted on
Apr 17, 2022

Cate Blanchett talks about addressing the climate crisis in a new podcast

Happy Sunday, everyone!

There is a new interview from The Observer with Cate and Danny Kennedy for their Audible original podcast, Climate of Change. Check out the magazine scan and you can read a part of it below.

Cate Blanchett talks about addressing the climate crisis in a new podcast

Cate Blanchett is Australian. I mention this fact because I’d forgotten it, somehow, so her manner of speaking — upbeat, front-footed, Aussie-accented — comes as a surprise. And I’ve spent quite some time hearing her talk over the past couple of days, as she has a new podcast, Climate of Change, which she hosts with her friend Danny Kennedy, another Australian. Kennedy is a CEO of an environmental non-profit, New Energy Nexus, and runs the California Clean Energy Fund. Their podcast, as you may have guessed from the title, is about the climate emergency. But before you come over all world-weary and what’s-the-point, before you get tetchy about preachy celebrities telling us stuff we already know, you might as well stop. Blanchett is already there.

“You can recycle up the wazoo, Miranda,” she says (told you she was Australian), “but it can just make you feel more cross and isolated and panicky… I get that. What we’re trying to do with the podcast is to turn the magnet towards optimism in these incredibly pessimistic times.:

We’re talking via video link, but Blanchett has her camera turned off. Kennedy, who’s in his office in Oakland, California, hasn’t and he wanders around, showing us the view from the window (just some more offices really). Blanchett’s location is a secret, due to heavy-handed PRs and her natural privacy, though I’d guess she’s in the UK (she lives in Sussex).

The location doesn’t really matter, of course, as they’re talking about a worldwide problem. The climate crisis is very real — we need to halve the world’s carbon emissions by 2030 —and becoming ever more so for those living in Europe, with our reliance on Russian gas. If you think about it all too hard, you can panic.

And Blanchett does, she says. In the first episode, she chats into the mic as she drives her electric car towards London and discusses how overwhelmed she can feel by the “tide of bad news”. She describes herself as a “mother of four” (the oldest is 20, the youngest seven) and an “optimistic pessimist”, and confesses to range anxiety as she forgot to plug in her car to charge last night. Her role in the show is to represent the listener, which is weird as she’s globally famous. But Blanchett’s approach is relatable: she wonders aloud if making an effort is worth it. Why bother recycling, up the wazoo or no, if the tipping point to the end of the worlds is so close and the people in power are still locked into fossil fuels?

She and Kennedy made Climate of Change earlier this year, mostly in a studio in east London. They have some strong guests: Adam McKay, the director of Don’t Look Up, makes an appearance, as does Prince William, to talk about his Earthshot prize. (He explains it very well, actually; it sounds much more interesting than I’d realized.) Still, at the start of the series, in common with many climate emergency podcasts, the discussion can feel rather broad, with smudgy chat about tech and innovation and the “disruptive decade”. At one point, someone says” “We are the stories we tell ourselves,” which might be true but doesn’t help that much with the gas bill. By episode two, however, the show is focusing on real-life solutions and these are undoubtedly encouraging. We meet a Filipino woman who’s designed a clean energy lamp that local fishermen can use; and the Londoner who’s brought gardening to train station. One California company, OhmConnect, has such a good idea about reducing at-home electricity that I try to sign up. But it’s not yet available in the UK.

What they’re trying to do with the podcast, say Kennedy, is to appeal to people like me. To show us tired recyclers that the answers to environmental catastrophe are already out there. “The choir has heard the doom and gloom song for a long time,” he says, “and sung it from the song sheet, like a good choir would. What they haven’t been taught is the song about solutions and the fact we’ve got them.”

“A lot of people are feeling fatigued,” says Blanchett. “I think we need a sense of, ‘No don’t worry, these changes are happening.’ Because they are.”

Blanchett and Kennedy met in Sydney in the early 1990s. They were part of the same social circle – Kennedy wrote a play with Andrew Upton, now Blanchett’s husband. Later, in 2008, Blanchett and Upton were appointed co-artistic directors of Sydney Theatre Company and decided to try to make the building, an old timber-and-glass warehouse, as ecologically sound as possible. They enlisted Kennedy to help. He brought in consultants – “one guy called Gavin Gilchrist: Cate, if you recall, the fellow who did the toilet flushes” – and helped redo the insulation to make the building “tighter and better, even though it was a pretty old, leaky, wooden construction”.

The biggest proposal was the installation of solar energy panels, which proved difficult to get past heritage rules and the general cynicism of Sydney’s county council. “We were met by a lot of internal skepticism and external opposition,” remembers Blanchett. “You know: ‘What has this to do with a cultural institution, what does it have to do with making theatre, why are we bothering?’ So we thought: ‘OK, we’ll be at the theatre company for 10 years and we have a whole suite of ambitions. And the solar panels will probably be the last one we achieve, if we do.’ And it was the first one we achieved.”

It took two years. There are now 1,906 solar panels powering lights, ventilation and air con across the building. Kennedy thinks that Blanchett and Upton’s theatre project was “a catalystic moment” that kickstarted a sense in Australia that solar power was viable and cost-effective; the country is now, he says, the biggest solar market in the developed world. Blanchett thinks of it as a “symbolic gesture” that, when added to an industry shift, “all adds up”.

So she and Kennedy have known each other for ages (Blanchett recently found some old photos of his daughters when they were little) and then, last summer, Kennedy came to stay with Blanchett and her family in Cornwall. They took him to the Eden Project, which he loved, and the podcast project was started there. They visited “these old mines that are engaged in modern, clean-energy transition minerals and materials production – I’m a geek, I love that,” he says. For Blanchett, the show was “a much more primal urge. We sort of had to. I had so many questions.”

I ask her about using celebrity to get attention on important issues. “Look,” she says, “if you have your two minutes in the sun, you can highlight solar technology or you can highlight an underwear line. But I’m genuine when I say that there were a lot of questions, embarrassingly ignorant questions, that I’ve been asking Danny over the decades. And I thought, ‘Well, I can’t be alone.’ When you ask a question, however ignorant or ill-informed it may be, you’re asking to open a door to a deeper understanding.”

Climate of Change podcast is out now on Audible.

The rest of the interview is on the magazine scan.

The New Review – April 17th 2022

Climate of Change Interview and Promos
Posted on
Apr 15, 2022

Climate of Change Interview and Promos

Hello, everyone!

You can now watch the interview with Imogen Heap, who is a guest on episode 6 of Climate of Change podcast. The podcast is now available on Audible. Check out two promotional videos below.

Promotional Videos

 

Cate Blanchett on Climate of Change Podcast
Posted on
Apr 14, 2022

Cate Blanchett on Climate of Change Podcast

Good day, everyone!

The Climate of Change with Cate Blanchett and Danny Kennedy, which was co-created, co-produced, and co-hosted by Cate, is now available on Audible UK. An outtake from the podcast interview with Prince William was also released. Check them below.

Click image for higher resolution

The six-part series, Climate of Change with Cate Blanchett and Danny Kennedy, will see the Oscar winner explore eco-anxiety and optimism with environmental activist Kennedy, as the pair raise awareness of the emerging technological revolution with the help of some special guests.

“Throughout the series, Cate and Danny speak directly to visionaries and trendsetters who are making innovative strides to turn the tide on climate change, from the Navajo Nation in Arizona to the Australian Outback,” Audible teases.

The guests on the podcast ranges from different backgrounds: former President of Ireland Mary Robinson, social historian Rutger Bregman, Prince William, 2021 Earthshot Finalists and Winners, economic thought leader and author Tony Seba and Agamemnon Otero, Katy Milkman, author and inventor Saul Griffith, director Adam McKay (Don’t Look Up), artist Luke Jerram (Gaia), fashion activist Livia Firth and musician Imogen Heap.

Click the image to be redirected to Audible UK where you can listen to clips or full episodes.

Climate of Change

Climate of Change Promotional

Promotional Screencaptures

Source: Radio Times, Audible UK