Archive for the ‘TV’ Category

A Documentarian’s Observation – Long Hair Revolution from 2004 to 2019

Thursday, 4 July, 2019

*** A Documentarian’s Observation – Long Hair Revolution from 2004 to 2019 ***

Please have a read of A Documentarian’s Observation – Long Hair Revolution from 2004 to 2019” in the main original post where it is centralized at one location for ease of further update and adding materials.

*** New video to watch with added English subtitles ***

Long Hair 長毛 梁國雄 Leung Kwok-hung kindly gave me permission to follow and film him for about a month in 2004 for my debut documentary film Long Hair Revolution (2005). Now almost 15 years later in 2019, it has been a pleasant surprise and a bit emotional for me to watch the RTHK Headliner 頭條新聞 segment 【聰吧!新中年!】抗爭者言, 長毛 梁國雄) (episode 12, 愛民如子父母官 14/06/2019) featuring Long Hair.

I’ve spent quite a few hours over the last few weeks to video capture the Headliner 頭條新聞 segment【聰吧!新中年!】抗爭者言, translate the spoken Cantonese into English and lined up the English subtitle/Closed Caption text to exactly match the timing of the Chinese subtitle text on the clip. Feel free to let me know if you spot any clear mistakes and have suggestions to better translate things.

I’ve now uploaded my English subtitle enhanced clip onto YouTube, I hope you enjoy watching it: Long Hair – 2019 頭條新聞 RTHK Headliner

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#GameOfThrones series finale was aweful (Veep, Big Bang Theory, Sopranos ended things much better!)

Tuesday, 21 May, 2019

Major Spoilers Warning!

20190521 Dragon can understand symbolism now?

Game Of Thrones TV series created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss (D&D) for HBO was well loved by millions (me included) for 7 seasons. Sadly the show fell apart on its final season 8 with the series finale (s8.6) being an epic cluster beep!

How bad was GoT series finale (s8.6)? We went grocery shopping, ate dinner while watching other TV shows before we actually watched the finale at 11pm EST (2 hours after the show started) before we just had no expectation left. And the finale did turn out to be a #ShitShow in my eyes. A cancelled S8 would have been better for fans. 

Just as comparisons, Veep and The Big Bang Theory also had their series finales and they generally garnered praises! Witness:

IndieWire, 13 May, 2019 “‘Veep’ Review: The Series Finale Is a Terrific Ending America Better Hope Doesn’t Come True
IndieWire, 17 May, 2019, “‘The Big Bang Theory’ Review: Series Finale Delivers an Ending True To Itself

From Vice, “‘Game of Thrones’ Ended in the Worst Way Possible In ‘The Iron Throne,’ the final episode of ‘Game of Thrones,’ nearly every decision was the wrong one.

Inexplicably, Bran is King

It’s hard to justify this one. GoT has a penchant for twists and all that—this is Benioff and Weiss material after all—but only the Three-eyed Raven saw this one coming. We’re supposed to believe that it would only take a well-placed suggestion by Tyrion, man who all parties distrust, to suddenly place Bran as the best choice to rule? We’re supposed to buy that a series that spent entire seasons reveling in political tug-of-wars and in-fighting about governance, just determined it all from Tyrion’s elevator pitch about folks with the best stories?

Even if you forgive all of this, there is nothing gratifying about Bran’s story. For the entirety of season five, he played hooky as a visible player. In season six, he was that Westeros guy nibbling on psychedelic weirwood bark, mumbling endlessly about being “the Three-Eyed Raven” and not “wanting” anything. And now that the Night King is defeated, this series has done nothing to lay the groundwork for the new leader, Bran the Broken, who’s apparently ready and willing to take the throne.

So it’s the ultimate finesse: that Bran who truly knew of the past, present, and future, spent whole seasons silently staring down other characters, with the knowledge that he was destined to be king. Forget the thousands burned by a dragon. Forget the countless innocents who could have been saved from his foresight. Self-servingly, Bran knew this would happen all along. That doesn’t feel right.

Daenerys deserved more

After a heated conversation with Tyrion—because he’s what passes for reason in this episode—a battered Jon Snow confronts aunty Daenerys about her roast of King’s Landing. One thing leads to another, and Jon hugs Dany, proclaiming her his queen before kissing her. Then he kills her.

It is so cold and out of character for a protagonist known as being stupidly loyal and honourable to side-step Dany’s advances for three episodes, only to slide his tongue down her throat as he stabs her. It took her mad queen transformation one episode to reach an extreme, and this kill had the same energy. It was the cheapest and quickest way to rid Thrones of a huge problem it wrote into existence, regardless of believability. […]

Drogon can understand symbolism now?

What’s Drogon’s deal? In one episode, he can’t take on a fleet of ships led by a deranged pirate. In the very next one, he not only destroys those ships, but takes down King’s Landing, too. And now, when he finds his mother dead by Jon’s hands, he reacts by melting down the Iron Throne with unrelenting fire. It’s a little too on the nose.

Dragons were once thought to be unstoppable weapons, but in the show’s final season their abilities were inconsistent. An indestructible weapon would pose issues from a storytelling perspective, so the thought of a dragon being important enough to kill a certain god-tier character wouldn’t exactly work. But it’s hard not to wonder why Drogon didn’t turn his wrath toward Jon Snow, who just knifed his mother. Instead, the dragon turned the Iron Throne to lava, destroying a symbol that has caused plenty of destruction of its own. Satisfying? Yes. Cheesy? Very.”

This VOX article has made some good points that are fairly close to how I feel. [HT Yvonne] “The Game of Thrones finale had a chance to break the wheel. It upheld the status quo. – The long-awaited series finale, “The Iron Throne,” proves Game of Thrones was never interested in breaking cycles of power.(more…)

Stephen Fry – 50 Not Out

Tuesday, 11 September, 2012

Stephen Fry – 50 Not Out. Highly recommended.

Campy Johnny Depp – Life’s Too Short

Thursday, 27 October, 2011

Very funny. Campy Johnny Depp – Life’s Too Short

TiVo CEO Tom Rogers interview @ Banff World TV Festival 2010

Friday, 9 July, 2010

Tom Rogers, CEO of TiVo

It was my pleasure to interview TiVo CEO Tom Rogers when he was at the 2010 Banff World TV Festival.

In the interview, Tom and I talked about TiVo’s relationship with the advertising industry and television networks. When people are fast-forwarding commercials using technologies like DVR, television “needs to find different forms of inventory that involve different technologies as a way to present that [advertising] so that the advertising is compelling”. Tom gave the example of TiVo’s ability to pause live TV, so viewers can search and find any products appearing in a TV show (a sweater worn by an actress, a golf club used by an athlete, or any products on screen at the moment) and then turn the thought into an actionable transaction where the viewer can buy the product. TiVo is putting a lot of meta data into the TV content and movie content and in doing so, create a lot of “transaction opportunities”.

I also asked Tom When will TiVo come to Canada? And will the data collected by TiVo be transferable to Canada and other countries.

TiVo CEO Tom Rogers interview @ Banff World TV Festival 2010

Tom Rogers, CEO of TiVo

Tom Rogers (r), CEO of TiVo

Here is Tom’s Banff bio.

Tom Rogers is President and Chief Executive Officer of TiVo (NASDAQ: TIVO), the creator of and a leader in television services for digital video recorders (DVRs). With a career that operates at the nexus of where media, technology, advertising and public policy come together for more than two decades, Tom brings to TiVo a distinctive blend of operational leadership and corporate strategy experience across multiple facets of the industry. (more…)

Ian Brennan, creator/writer Glee (19 Emmy nominations) @ 2010 Banff World TV Festival

Thursday, 8 July, 2010

Ian Brennan, creator/writer Glee (19 Emmy nominations) @ 2010 Banff World TV FestivalThe wildly popular TV show Glee (imdb), with 19 Emmy nominations, has become a favourite show of mine Emmy nominees for best actress (Lea Michele as Rachel Berry), best actor (Matthew Morrison as Will Schuester), and in particular Best Supporting Actress (Jane Lynch as the mean and nasty Sue Sylvester) were a ton of fun to watch.

It was my great pleasure to meet, listen, and learn from Ian Brennan, creator/writer of Glee at the 2010 Banff World TV Festival. The following are video clips of Ian‘s Master Class and press conference.

Press conference

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The following is Ian’s bio from Banff.

Ian Brennan
Writer, Glee
“Glee marked Ian Brennan’s first foray into television writing. Brennan began his acting career in Chicago working with the prestigious Steppenwolf and Goodman Theatres. He later moved to New York to pursue other opportunities in television and film, and has been involved with off-Broadway plays at the Vineyard, Playwrights Horizons and MCC Theatres. Brennan is a graduate of Loyola University Chicago. He was inspired to write Glee – a television show about a high school show choir – after participating in his high school’s show choir that never won anything and whose director later spent time in prison.”

An intro about the session,

“Brennan was inspired to write Fox’s smash hit show “Glee” – a television show about a high school show choir – after participating in his high school’s show choir that never won anything and whose director later spent time in prison. (more…)

‘MILLIONAIRE’ AFTERMATH: WHY DO STUDIOS KEEP LOSING LAWSUITS?

Wednesday, 7 July, 2010

For the record.

‘MILLIONAIRE’ AFTERMATH: WHY DO STUDIOS KEEP LOSING LAWSUITS?

Wed Jul 07, 2010 @ 06:58PM PST

By Matthew Belloni

Perhaps studio execs should start volunteering for jury service.

Wednesday’s $270 million verdict against the Walt Disney Co. over profits from “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” is part of a trend that should have Hollywood heavyweights worried: Juries lately are skeptical of so-called “Hollywood accounting” — and are not hesitant to award huge damages to creative types who cry foul.

Consider the evidence: A Riverside, Calif., jury of five women and four men, none of whom work in entertainment, awarded $269.4 million in damages to “Millionaire” producer Celador after only three days of deliberations — by far the largest jury award ever in a case alleging self-dealing among studio-owned entities. It unanimously endorsed Celador’s argument that (more…)

Ricky Gervais wins Sir Peter Ustinov Award for Comedy @ 2010 Banff World TV Festival

Wednesday, 7 July, 2010

Ricky Gervais and his wife Jane Fallon with RCMP officiersRicky Gervais & me

To us Canadians, the world famous funny comedian Ricky Gervais is Ricky Dene Gervais (watch Ricky’s acceptance speech to find out why)! 🙂

The following is red carpet interviews with Ricky including my question to Ricky about the finale of Extras (highly recommended funny comedy).

The following is Ricky‘s speech and a brief clip after receiving his award.

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This is part of the amazing scene from Extras I love so much and a very insightful and enjoyable interview “Ricky Gervais in His Most ‘Postmodern’ Interview Ever“.

The Good Wife (David Zucker, executive producer @ 2010 Banff World TV Festival master class)

Wednesday, 7 July, 2010

The Good Wife, co-created by the husband and wife team Robert King and Michelle King, is a great TV series that I quite enjoy. It was my pleasure to attend an insightful master class by David Zucker, executive producer of The Good Wife, at the 2010 Banff World TV Festival.

David Zucker, executive producer of The Good Wife 2010 Banff World TV Festival master class

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The following is David’s bio at Banff

“David W. Zucker is President of Television for Scott Free and Executive Producer of both the hit CBS drama, THE GOOD WIFE, starring Julianna Margulies, as well as the Friday night stalwart, NUMB3RS, which will wrap its sixth season in March. He is also Executive Producer of the eight-hour limited series, THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH, based on Ken Follett’s international best-seller. (more…)

Jason Priestley “Call Me Fitz” at Banff World TV Festival 2010

Wednesday, 7 July, 2010

Jason Priestley & me

I really enjoy the pilot of Jason Priestley‘s new TV series “Call Me Fitz“, it looks like great TV where Jason plays Richard “Fitz” Fitzpatrick, “a morally bankrupt used-car salesman whose consequence-free life is complicated by the arrival of do-gooder Larry (Ernie Grunwald), another salesman who claims he is Fitz’s conscience.

In the following clip, you will see Jason and the show creator Sheri Elwood at Banff talking about “Call Me Fitz“.

Note: I want to add that the cool and character fitting underwear wore by Jason in “Call Me Fitz” were designed by a Canadian company (Ginch Gonch) and we first heard about the brand/business pitched on CBC TV on Dragons’ Den in 2006. It looks like the company was sold in July 2008. Anyway, good job by the PR team to get Ginch Gonch products featured.

Here is a trailer of “Call Me Fitz“.

Jason talking about “Call Me Fitz” at MIPTV.

At Banff, Sheri talked about finding “Fitz” in Jason after watching this QTV interview of Jason on the internet. I think this is a good lesson for actors/actresses as you never know how and where you will be discovered for a role.

More info:

Cast grows for ‘Call Me Fitz’ – Ernie Grunwald among actors joining Jason Priestley in sitcom (Hollywood Reporter)

Jason Priestley embraces role created by South Shore producer (southshorenow.ca)