July News Bits 2: Emmys, Mort Sahl, Vanessa Paradis, Stanley Kubrik, spike Lee, Ellen Page, List Mania and more

The Emmy Award nominations were announced. Congrats the following Woody Allen alumni:

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep (Deconstructing Harry)

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock (Alice, To Rome With Love, Blue Jasmine)
Louis C.K., Louie (‘Blue Jasmine‘)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory (Don’t Drink the Water)

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom (The Purple Rose Of Cairo)

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Bobby Cannavale, Boardwalk Empire (‘Blue Jasmine‘)


One of the more interesting tidbits to come out in interviews with Allen in recent weeks is a possible return to stand-up. The thought was put into his head when he saw a set by Mort Sahl. Fishbowl NY asked him what he thought about that.

To your question on why Woody might have been “sparked” by the [Carlyle Room] shows. I can only say that perhaps I had subjects in my monologue – movies, directors, beginnings in comedy, formulaic comedy – that registered with him and were experiences that we had together.

He laughed when we remembered talking about giving up comedy and going into the restaurant business so we’d have someplace to go at night. Dick Cavett, also a friend for over 50 years, joined us. Dick went on to learn English – Woody and I didn’t.


Jan Harlan is a close friend and frequent executive producer for the late Stanley Kubrick. He recently spoke to the BFI about the legendary director and dropped an amazing tidbit – that Kubrick wanted to cast Allen as the lead in ‘Eyes Wide Shut‘.

So the start of your work with Stanley coincided with the beginning of his Warner Bros. contract?

Yes. Did you know that his first contract with Warner Bros. was for Traumnovelle in 1970? – the film that became ‘Eyes Wide Shut‘ almost 30 years later. He ‘postponed’ it because he wasn’t happy with his script and ‘A Clockwork Orange‘ came along, the script was a ‘scissor job’ and he decided to do this.

Much later, before ‘The Shining‘, he was on cloud nine with the idea of doing Traumnovelle as a low-budget arthouse film in black and white with Woody Allen in the lead – filming in London and maybe Dublin to mock New York. It was always New York and present time. Woody Allen, straight, as a Jewish doctor in New York: that was his plan. He abandoned it again because he was not satisfied with his script.

I am very happy to know that he considered ‘Eyes Wide Shut‘ his greatest contribution to the art of filmmaking – and I think he is the only judge that matters.

I’d heard about Steve Martin being mooted for the lead at one point – presumably in the early 80s – but not Woody Allen. How involved was Woody with it at this early stage?

He never spoke to Woody Allen. I met Woody in New York and told him all this and he said that Stanley had never asked him. But I know that Stanley had him in mind and he was pretty sure that Woody would play the part, had this become a project – it’s a great part and the two would have harmonised splendidly. Stanley loved Woody Allen’s films – “particularly the early funny ones” (as the aliens said).


There is a long and wonderful profile on Vanessa Paradis in the Telegraph. It talks about her whole life, but also her return to music. She also discussed co-starring with Woody Allen in the upcoming Fading Gigolo.

I play a Hasidic widow who’s a lice lady. My first day of shooting, I’m in front of Woody Allen, dressed in a wig and turban, and this and that, and I’m trying to get rid of the lice of this beautiful little boy with the biggest afro hair, with a thin nit comb. Talk about obstacles!

The article also says that ‘Fading Gigolo‘ is still on track for a 2013 release, although we’ve seen mentions of it going into 2014.


Writer/Director Bret Easton Ellis gave filmcomment a list of guilty pleasure films (kinda). At number 2 was Stardust Memories. Here’s what he wrote.

Sandy Bates (Woody Allen) looks back at his life mid-career while attending a weekend film festival celebrating him and his films (especially the earlier, funny ones). Bob Fosse’s ‘All That Jazz‘ came out the year before, and it’s a more dynamic (and sentimental) showbiz movie also patterned after Fellini’s ‘8 1/2‘ and also featuring a portrait of the artist as famous director reconsidering his fame and art. Whereas Fosse’s movie was much loved and honored, Allen’s movie was hated and forgotten. It was interpreted as a cold movie about a filmmaker resenting and ridiculing his audience—but if that’s what it’s really about, so what? That’s not compelling? Consistently funny and brooding, it might be the most interesting and nakedly revealing movie Woody Allen has ever made, and the most shimmeringly beautiful: shot in black and white by Gordon Willis, it’s as visually stunning as Manhattan, even if it’s not as achieved as that 1979 masterpiece.

The full list features films with Allen alumni Jeff Daniels (‘The Purple Rose Of Cairo‘) and Greta Gerwig (‘To Rome With Love‘).

You can only watch it in the US, but Ellen Page apparently spoke about working with Allen on ‘To Rome With Love‘ on Chelsea Lately.

Spike Lee has revealed a list of films that every filmmaker should see. Slashfilm has the list which includes one Allen film – Zelig

Criterion Cast has put another Allen film forward for Criterion Consideration – Love And Death. We love Criterion. We can only dream of the Allen collection.


With the release of ‘Blue Jasmine‘ this week, the internet went very list crazy. There are, with no exaggeration, over a hundred lists of best Woody Allen films, performances and more, in dozens of languages. Here’s just a small selection.

The Women of Woody Allen films – New York Times.

6 Awesome Love Lessons From Woody Allen Movies – P0licy Mic


@timholt posted this from a ‘UK sunday’ paper, collecting different quotes from actors who have worked with Allen over the years.

For Must-See Woody Allen films – Young Hollywood

The new site The Dissolve chose ‘Zelig‘ to profile this month.

10 Great Literary Allusions in Woody Allen films – Word & Film

How Woody Allen’s Movie Posters Reflect His Films – film.com


Woody Allen’s Films As Infographics – Vulture

A History Of Critics Praising Woody Allen’s Films As A “Return To Form” – Paper Mag

Movie Mezzanine revisited every Woody Allen film


Life reposted some classic photos of Allen

Cineplex has a Woody Allen quiz


6 Woody Allen Films To See – Digital TV Sign Up

Nymag covers the women in Allen’s films

50 Woody Allen films ranked – film.com

13 Best Allen Films – newsday

You may also like

Leave a Reply