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September 6, 2015   Ali   Danish Girl, Video Comments Off on 72nd Venice Film Festival – The Danish Girl Press Conference

Here is a video clip showing some of the Danish Girl press conference from the Venice Film Festival yesterday!

September 6, 2015   Ali   Danish Girl Comments Off on Venice Film Review: ‘The Danish Girl’

Variety gives us the first review of The Danish Girl and it sounds like once again Eddie delivered a phenomenal performance!

Eddie Redmayne makes the ultimate transition, reteaming with ‘Les Miserables’ director Tom Hooper in this sensitive, high-profile portrait of transgender pioneer Lili Erbe.

A year after Eddie Redmayne proved his incredible capacity for reinvention in “The Theory of Everything,” the freckle-faced Brit pulls off the ultimate identity overhaul as “The Danish Girl,” portraying gender-reassignment trailblazer Lili Elbe, nee Einar Wegener, who was one of the first to make a “sex change” via surgery. For an actor, there can be few more enticing — or challenging — roles than this, in which the nature of identity, performance and transformation are all wrapped up in the very fabric of the character itself, and Redmayne gives the greatest performance of his career so far, infinitely more intimate — and far less technical — than the already stunning turn as Stephen Hawking that so recently won him the Oscar. Reuniting with “Les Miserables” director Tom Hooper in a return to the handsome, mostly interior style of the helmer’s Oscar-winning “The King’s Speech,” Redmayne finds himself at the heart — one shared by Alicia Vikander, as Einar’s wife, Gerda — of what’s destined to be the year’s most talked-about arthouse phenomenon.

Though set nearly a century ago, between the years 1926 and 1931, it has taken this long for the subject to receive such a high-profile treatment, and though some might say argue it comes as too little too late, the pic’s release could hardly be timelier in the wake of so many recent headlines — especially the legalization of gay marriage and Caitlyn Jenner’s high-profile gender transition. As it happens, “The Danish Girl” has been in the works since the publication of David Ebersoff’s novel 15 years ago, with Nicole Kidman originally attached to play Lili for director Lasse Hallstrom.

Clearly, this was never not going to be a “prestige” picture. And while that ultra-respectful approach will engender allergic reactions in some, who’d sooner see a gritty, realistic portrayal — a la Jill Soloway’s terrific “Transparent” series for Amazon — than one seemingly tailored for the pages of fashion and interior-design magazines, there’s no denying that Hooper and screenwriter Lucinda Coxon have delivered a cinematic landmark, one whose classical style all but disguises how controversial its subject matter still remains. For rowdier crowds, there will always be “Myra Breckinridge.” In order to penetrate the conversation of “polite” society, however, one must play by its rules, and “The Danish Girl” is nothing if not sensitive to how old-fashioned viewers (and voters) might respond, scrubbing the story of its pricklier details and upholding the long-standing LGBT-movie tradition of tragically killing off the “monster” in the end.

Pause for a moment to consider how significant a choice it was to cast a man, Redmayne, in the lead role — which is not to say that gifted actresses haven’t delivered incredible work in pre- and post-op male-to-female parts, from Felicity Huffman’s “Transamerica” road-tripper to Olympia Dukakis’ “Tales of the City” landlady. But it’s almost unfair to cast according to the character’s target gender, as it inoculates whatever resistance the public feels toward these procedures (although one day, Hollywood will cross the hurdle of inviting trans actors to play such roles, as well as those on either side of gender divide).

When “The Danish Girl” first introduces Redmayne’s character, he is dapperly costumed as a Danish gentleman, making eyes across a gallery opening at his wife, Gerda (Vikander). And what eyes! Throughout the actor’s career, casting directors have always wrestled with Redmayne’s exceptionally specific look, which is not so much androgynous as a paradoxical blend of pretty and off-putting features: those unblinking, long-lashed eyes; the sharp, knobby cleft of his nose; elegant malar bones set above pale, sucked-in cheeks; and lips to make Angelina Jolie jealous. Our brains never quite know how to process Redmayne’s appearance, and here, Hooper takes full advantage of that situation.

The first time Einar dons ladies’ clothes, the idea is Gerda’s: Already married, the couple both make their living as artists, and though Einar’s work is taken seriously, a gallerist tells Gerda that she could be great, if only she found the right subject matter. It’s just an offhand suggestion, a favor really, but while waiting for her model to arrive, Gerda asks her husband to slip on a pair of ivory stockings and matching silk pumps, inadvertently releasing her muse.

When dancer friend Ulla (Amber Heard) does appear, she responds to the situation with delight, christening Einar’s alter ego “Lili.” It’s a confusing moment for Einar, who has long repressed what made him different from the other boys in Vejle, Denmark, and who will later tell his wife, “You helped bring Lili to life, but she was always there.” Outsiders always want to know what makes LGBT people “that way,” seeking psychological answers to a situation with which they can’t identify, but “The Danish Girl” dutifully avoids any such armchair diagnosis. It is surely for the benefit of such skeptics that Lili explains, “God made me this way, but the doctor is curing me of the sickness that was my disguise.”

Until scandalously recent times, the medical community’s response to such identity issues was to diagnose their “aberrant” or “perverse” patients as schizophrenic or insane and to shock, drug or irradiate the sickness out of them. That chronic misunderstanding becomes a running thread in the film, which tends to be far more pleasant to watch when Lili is getting to be herself. She is understandably hesitant to emerge at first, though Einar (who hates public gatherings) agrees to accompany his wife dressed as Lili, his imaginary ginger-haired cousin from Vejle. The resulting scene may be the film’s best, a coming out as thrilling as Cinderella’s ball, in which Lili can feel the gaze of everyone in the room on her.

This, he learns, is how beautiful women feel all the time in public, and if audiences take nothing else away from Hooper’s humanely empathetic film, this lone gender-swapping lesson in identification is victory enough. Naturally, Lili’s situation is more complicated, instantly escalating when a young suitor named Henrik (Ben Whishaw, masculinized for contrast’s sake) takes Lili aside and tries to kiss her — at precisely the moment Gerda comes to fetch her husband. Clinging to the notion that Einar and Gerda’s love was strong enough to weather all the challenges of his transition, Coxon’s screenplay is dramatized in such a way that the couple never discuss any of these setbacks immediately, but typically get around to it a scene or two later, back at home with their pet dog to distract and dressed in a fresh set of costume designer Paco Delgado’s lovely frocks.

In this case, Lili has vanished by the next morning, replaced by Einar, who appears to be genuinely wrestling between the two personae struggling for control of his body. At one point, reunited with boyhood friend Hans (Matthias Schoenaerts), he admits that he has considered suicide, but held back because he understood he would be killing Lili at the same time — a sentiment that all too many trans people share and one of the many reasons such a well-rounded portrayal is long overdue.

Of course, Einar’s struggle is very real, all the more difficult for its time, given the prevailing homophobia (dramatized in a Parisian gay-bashing) and sexual politics of the time. The late ’20s were still early days for women’s rights, and Redmayne represents someone trying to follow his female intuition at a time when that meant ceding the social privileges of manhood — an irony made clear in Gerda’s character, whose own bisexual identity has been conspicuously omitted, so as not to complicate the film’s politics.

Spotlighting the least-represented thread in the LGBT quilt, “The Danish Girl” clearly wants to untangle the trans experience from the blanket definition of homosexuality, using Lili’s rejection of Whishaw’s gay character and her interview with gender-confirmation surgeon Dr. Kurt Warnekros (Sebastian Koch, playing the sensitive pioneer) to distinguish the two. What’s of utmost importance here is the discovery and ultimate acceptance of Lili’s true identity, and from the film’s perspective, the gender question has nothing (or very little) to do with sex. Rather, it’s something that reveals itself at first in mirrors and other reflective surfaces, and later directly to camera, as Redmayne explores Einar’s hidden second persona.

As Hans puts it at a train sendoff that recalls “Casablanca,” “I’ve only really liked a handful of people in my life, and you’ve been two of them.” But Lili’s emergence is a gradual and hesitant process, beautifully embodied by Redmayne — and reflected by Vikander, whose Gerda does her best to adapt alongside her husband, amounting to a substantive role for the film’s resident “Swedish girl.” Shy at first, like a flower opening, Redmayne ducks his eyes and turns his head as Lili, his confidence growing in tandem with the rolling boil of Alexandre Desplat’s strings and piano score.

Though his first attempt at makeup looks rather grotesque, he becomes quite the pro (with an assist from actual pro Jan Sewell, who also designed the star’s prosthetics in “The Theory of Everything”), upstaging the other women whenever he goes out in public. At first, the goal is simply to pass — a game, almost — but in time, the butterfly motif becomes clear, reflected in the pic’s ripening color scheme. By the end, the goal is complete and total transformation as Einar studies the body language of the women around him and incorporates them into what for Redmayne is a character, but for Lili is her true self.

September 4, 2015   Ali   Articles & Interviews, Danish Girl Comments Off on Director Tom Hooper Has Defended His Decision To Hand British Actor Eddie Redmayne The Lead Role In The Danish Girl

Some were hesitant about Eddie taking the part of the lead in a film about a transgender and felt a transgenered actor should have the opportunity, but Tom Hooper sticks to his decision and explains why.

In the new drama, The Theory of Everything actor plays Einar Wegener, one of the world’s first-known recipients of gender reassignment surgery who became a woman named Lili Elbe.

The casting has been criticised by several activists who claim the role should have been played by a member of the transgender community, but director Hooper is adamant Redmayne was the right choice.

He tells Screendaily.com, “Eddie was really the person I wanted to make the film with, and I was very passionate about that. I was a great believer in him as an actor. I think also there’s a certain gender fluidity that I sensed in him, that I found intriguing… I felt that there was something in him that was drawn to the feminine…

“I think there’s a tremendous pool of talented trans actors out there, and I think there’s probably a journey to go on to make sure that talented trans actors have the same access to opportunities both in front of and behind the character as cisgendered actors.

“I hope we’re at the beginning of a revolution that will improve access for trans actors and trans filmmakers – but there’s a long way to go.”

The Danish Girl is due for release in the U.S. in November (15) and in the U.K. in January (15).

(Source)

September 4, 2015   Ali   Articles & Interviews, Danish Girl Comments Off on ‘Danish Girl’ Producer: “The Timing Couldn’t Have Been Better” for a Transgender Film

The Hollywood Reporter shared this story talking with the producer of the film about the timing of this film being released.

The biopic, starring Eddie Redmayne as the first known recipient of gender realignment surgery, has its world premiere in Venice on Saturday.

With transgender issues having risen to the forefront of topical debate, the arrival of Tom Hooper’s The Danish Girl, looks like an expert piece of scheduling.

But the film, a biopic of Danish artist Lili Elbe, one of the first known recipients of gender realignment surgery, has been in the pipeline since 2009, going through several changes of script, cast and directors before finally coming together in its current form.

Speaking ahead of The Danish Girl’s world premiere in Venice on Saturday, one of the film’s producers admits that luck has played a major part in helping it land at just the moment when everyone is talking about the subject.

“It’s just one of those good pieces of zeitgeist and good fortune,” Tim Bevan, co-chair of Working Title tells The Hollywood Reporter. “It’s something that Tom Hooper had on his radar for some time, but the timing couldn’t have been better.”

Indeed, Caitlyn Jenner’s June 1 Vanity Fair cover announced transgender’s arrival in the cultural mainstream. There is unprecedented visibility for transgender characters in film and TV, from Jeffrey Tambor’s Golden Globe-winning performance in Amazon series Transparent to Jared Leto’s Oscar-winning turn as a transgender woman dying of AIDS in Dallas Buyers Club, to the breakout success of transgender actress Laverne Cox in Netflix’ Orange is the New Black. Already, The Danish Girl is being touted as an Oscar contender.

Bevan says the fortunate timing of the film’s release may help The Danish Girl at the box office as well, since transgender issues are now part of the general conversation.

“A whole of lot of education (on transgender issues) has gone on that the film doesn’t have to do,” he says.

Following on from disaster epic Everest, which opened Venice on Wednesday, The Danish Girl gives Working Title two major titles appearing at the festival, and both with serious awards season potential.

“We’ve never done a double whammy before,” admits Bevan. “But we’ve had good runs from Venice before, with the likes of Tinker Tailor (Soldier Spy). Having done this a few times, you know that all the films are at least good.”

September 4, 2015   Ali   Danish Girl Comments Off on Eddie Redmayne says making The Danish Girl was ‘an extraordinary experience’

EW.com spoke with Eddie about the opportunity to portray Lili in his new film!

Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne has described making his new film, The Danish Girl, as “an extraordinary experience.” In the movie, which receives its North American premiere at the forthcoming Toronto International Film Festival, the British actor portrays artist Lili Elbe, who was assigned male at birth in 1882 and transitioned to female in the 1920s.

“It was an extraordinary experience and it’s continuing to be,” Redmayne told EW. “You sort of learn something every day, really. It’s a very delicate and intricate piece. I had an extraordinary time making it.”

Redmayne also spoke about the fact that the subject of transitioning has gained such cultural prominence in the time since the actor started prepping for the project, which is directed by Les Misérables filmmaker Tom Hooper.

“It is interesting, that,” said Redmayne. “I was sent the script by Tom when I was doing Les Misérables, and the project had been long-gestating. There has been this amazing sort of surge in the past year of visibility and discussion. It was an amazing thing to be working on while in the context of that.”

The Danish Girl opens in New York and Los Angeles on Nov. 27, and will expand to additional cities in December.

September 1, 2015   Ali   Danish Girl, Video Comments Off on Eddie Redmayne Transforms Into Woman in ‘The Danish Girl’ First Trailer

The first trailer for Eddie Redmayne’s transgender drama “The Danish Girl” has arrived online.

“I believe that I am a woman,” Redmayne’s character tells his wife in the teaser. “And I believe you too,” she says supportively.

Redmayne plays Danish artist Einar Wegener, later known as Lili Elbe — one of the first people to undergo a sex-change operation. The trailer begins with the early days of their marriage, when Einar’s wife, Greta (played by Alicia Vikander), painted him in drag. The lines get blurred when Einar kisses a man in secret during an evening out with Greta.

“This is not my body, I have to let it go,” Einar later says before undergoing a life-threatening sex-change surgery.

The film, based on David Ebershoff’s 2001 novel of the same name, reteams Redmayne with his “Les Miserables” director, Tom Hooper. Lucinda Coxon wrote the screenplay.

Matthias Schoenaerts and Amber Heard also star in the 1920s-set romance drama.

With transgender issues currently in the spotlight following reality star Caitlyn Jenner’s public transition, the film is generating Oscar buzz for both its Academy Award-winning star and director.

“The Danish Girl,” from Working Title Films and Focus Features, debuts at the Venice Film Festival this week and screens at the Toronto Film Festival in a few weeks before hitting theaters on Nov. 27.

(Source)

August 23, 2015   Ali   Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Comments Off on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them begins filming

So excited … Eddie’s new film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has started filming according to Entertainment Weekly!

Filming has officially begun on the Harry Potter spin-off film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Warner Bros. announced Monday.

Principle photography on the movie is under way at Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden, England, where all eight of the previous Potter movies were filmed.

Fantastic Beasts is being directed by David Yates, who helmed the last four Harry Potter films, from a screenplay written by J.K. Rowling. It stars Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander, the wizarding world’s leading magizoologist, who stops in New York following his travels to find and document magical creatures.

The cast also includes Katherine Waterston as Scamander’s wife, Tina, and singer-actress Alison Sudol as Tina’s sister Queenie (Rowling revealed their surname — Goldstein — on Twitter over the weekend), as well as Dan Fogler, Ezra Miller as Credence, Samantha Morton, Jenn Murray, Faith Wood-Blagrove, and Colin Farrell.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, inspired by Scamander’s textbook of the same name, is scheduled to arrive in theaters on Nov. 18, 2016.

August 22, 2015   Ali   Images, Magazines Comments Off on Out Magazine Scans

Thanks to my friend Luciana we have scans from the new issue of Out that features Eddie.

Gallery Links:
Eddie Redmayne Web > PUBLICATIONS > 2015 > September | Out

August 19, 2015   Ali   Charity, Video Comments Off on Eddie does the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Again!

Eddie was nominated for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge again. Watch his video here:

To support Eddie and donate, visit http://www.bit.do/IBC15. If you’re in the UK, text ICED55 £5 to 70070 . Thank you for your support!

Many thanks from the Motor Neurone Disease Association to our supporter Eddie Redmayne for doing the Ice Bucket Challenge for the second year running!

Eddie was challenged to take part by fellow Academy Award-winner Renée Zellweger, who was supporting the Golden West Chapter of The ALS Association, who are the American equivalent of the MND Association.

August 12, 2015   Ali   Images, Magazines Comments Off on Out Photoshoot

Out has released some outtakes from the feature they did on Eddie in their new issue and I have put them in the gallery for you to enjoy!

Gallery Links:
Eddie Redmayne Web > Outtakes > 2015 > 026