Archives for Theater


La Beouf: Not Shy About Acting Out

Last week, when actor Shia La Beouf made headlines for his outrageous public behavior at a New York theater, it was no surprise to those who have followed the career of the 28 year-old actor.

La Beouf is probably best known for his leading role in the first three “Transformer” films. He rose to prominence as the title character in the Disney Channel series, “Even Stevens”.

His meteoric rise in Hollywood notwithstanding, La Beouf‘s name has emblazoned the headlines fairly regularly over the last few years. It hasn’t been with rave reviews; the gossip rags have routinely fed on his fairly obvious public disdain for rules and laws.

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Daniel Radcliffe Moves On From The Harry Potter Franchise

Daniel Radcliffe is doing something we've all had to do at one point or another: He's moving on.

The Potter family celebrated the upcoming release of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 DVD earlier this week and filming for the final movie, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, has wrapped up and the movie will hit theaters July 15.

So, aside from a few red carpet appearances, one could say Radcliffe's journey with the gabazillion dollar Potter franchise is, for all intents and purposes, over.

And the actor is transitioning from the juggernaut that launched him into Super Stardom to smaller, more intimate (and some indie) productions.

In addition to once again gracing the Broadway stage (this time in the musical "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying"), Radcliffe is also starring in the thriller "The Woman in Black" as well as "The Amateur Photographer" which is an indie comedy set in the 1970s.

Although he seems to be on the right path (as far as avoiding some kind of former child star meltdown is concerned), I can't help but marvel at the mental transition Radcliffe must be undergoing.

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Carrie Fisher: “People Are Seeing Me As This Fat Woman”

Raven-Symone might think her weight loss takes away from all her other successes, but Carrie Fisher seems to think shedding a few pounds will make people stop seeing her as a "fat woman" and start recognizing her for everything she's been through and accomplished.

As a person who has spent her life battling substance abuse and bipolar disorder, Carrie Fisher has taken on bipolar disorder advocacy. She's spoken publicly about the mental illness and in 2008 released her best-selling memoir, Wishful Drinking - which soon became a theater and then HBO production.

Yet, as the actress of an iconic role (Princess Leia, anyone?) whose youthful beauty has pretty much forever been immortalized, Fisher is feeling the backlash of weight gain.

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Using Theater to Challenge Preconceptions of Mental Illness

Every year the Entertainment Industries Council, Inc. (EIC) - with help from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), FX Network, and News Corporation - presents the PRISM Awards to recognize accomplishments in the accurate portrayal of mental health issues in movies, television, comic books, and other entertainment venues.

Now, thanks to the RETHiNK Theatre Challenge, you too can flex your own scriptwriting fingers to bust stigma as well as "challenge preconceptions of mental illness."
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Blame for Mental Illness Exploitation: Where Do We Draw the Line?

Last Saturday, London's Soho Theatre wrapped up another running of Kim Noble's "Kim Noble Will Die" (the first of which aired back in April 2009, to my understanding) and the show seems to have gotten as many glowing reviews as scathing criticism.

Kim Noble has manic depression, and if you're wondering why the reactions to his show are so extreme (and, unless you're British or keep up with the various comedians around the world, it's likely you are), it seems to be because "Kim Noble Will Die" is a piece of performance art that - whether intentionally or unintentionally - includes something for everyone in the "This Is Gonna Infuriate, Disgust, or Otherwise Offend You" category.

Back in April, Times writer Dominic Maxwell, who overall seemed to enjoy the performance or at least Noble's creativity and talent, called it a "multimedia suicide note" and claimed that "even for a show about going too far, [Noble] goes too far," and really, it's not hard to imagine that the show that includes masturbation, vials of semen for the female viewers, questionable acts with feminine hygiene products, footage from Noble's own arrest for stalking, and has even been reported to the police may very well go too far for most folks.

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What Does The Score To Mental Illness Sound Like?

The 63rd Annual Tony Awards took place last Sunday night, and to my understanding the show was packed with excitement.

Having walked away with 10 of the 15 awards it was nominated for, Billy Elliot was pretty much to the Tony Awards what Twilight was to the MTV Movie Awards; only, to my understanding, better (I love you Twilight, but Best Movie? Really? Against The Dark Knight? It makes no sense).


Bret Michaels broke his face after rocking out to "Nothin' But a Good Time" with the Rock of Ages cast (unsurprisingly, YouTube is ready to meet all your "I-Gotta-See-That" needs).

Entertaining! Really, I'm glad he's okay and able to laugh about it. That could have been serious.

And Next to Normal - presently one of the most talked about Broadway shows, if my Google Alerts are any indication - took home three of the 11 nominations it came in with: Alice Ripley won for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical, Tom Kitt and Michael Starobin won Best Orchestration, and Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey won Best Original Score Written for the Theatre.


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Weekend Psychings: The Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation Launches

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This week wasn't a very busy one for mental health in the media and on the red carpet, but the things that did make it into my bookmarks are definitely worth checking out.

Related to movies, The Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Foundation, launched by Nathaniel Anthony Ayers (subject of The Soloist) and his sister, Jennifer Ayers-Moore, received a grant from the California Endowment this week to help support the Foundation's mission...
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