John Travolta has defended his controversial church and says he hasn't seen Alex Gibney's controversial documentary.
John Travolta has come out in defence of his controversial religion Scientology after the release of Alex Gibney's documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, which depicts the church as dangerous.
John Travolta has defended his controversial church
Travolta, who converted to Scientology in 1975, told the Tampa Bay Times that he hasn't watched the film and that he doesn't "really care" to see it.
Continue reading: John Travolta Doesn't Care to See Alex Gibney's Scientology Documentary
Directed by ‘Going Clear’s’ Alex Gibney, ‘All Or Nothing’ is a sympathetic look at Sinatra’s life through his music.
As one of the most recognisable voices of the 20th century, much has been written about the colourful life of Frank Sinatra in the years since his death in 1998. But this Sunday night (April 5th ) on HBO, Alex Gibney’s latest documentary All Or Nothing will attempt to provide the most in-depth look yet at both the singer’s career and personal life.
Frank Marshall, Tina Sinatra and Alex Gibney - Premiere of HBO's 'Sinatra: All or Nothing at All' at the Time Warner Center - Arrivals at Time Warner Center - New York City, New York, United States - Tuesday 31st March 2015
The doc alleges that the actor had his then wife Nicole Kidman’s phone tapped.
Directed by Alex Gibney, Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, has become the most talked about film to premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Claiming to lift the lid on the famously secretive religion, the doc also includes allegations about famous follower Tom Cruise and the church’s founder L. Ron Hubbard.
Tom Cruise is one of Scientology's most famous followers
Based in part on the book of the same name by Lawrence Wright, the film features interviews with former church members and never before seen footage, including some of Tom Cruise stage at a Scientology gala.
Alex Gibney is back with his latest documentary - this time tackling scientology.
Alex Gibney's Scientology documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief rocked audiences on the third day of the Sundance Film Festival, with various revelations coming to light from former followers of the religion. The movie had apparently been vetted by 160 lawyers before its premiere.
Alex Gibney's documentary was apparently vetted by 160 laywers before its release
The film details numerous allegations, including revelations about Tom Cruise and his then-wife Nicole Kidman. Based on a nonfiction bestseller by Lawrence Wright, Gibney's film reveals that Kidman was viewed by Scientology head honchos as a "Potential Trouble Source" and an enemy to any Scientologist. That status mainly arose from the fact that she was raised by a father who was a psychologist - a profession the church despises.
Continue reading: Sundance: Gibney's Scientology Doc 'Going Clear' Has Tom Cruise Claims
Christian McBride and Alex Gibney - A variety of stars were snapped on the red carpet at the Premiere of HBO's documentary film 'Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown' The event was held at the Park Cafe in New York City, United States - Monday 20th October 2014
While the eventful life of Fela Kuti provides more than enough subject matter for a biographical documentary, award-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney weakens the film with a second narrative strand that feels like another movie altogether. He did the same thing with last year's The Armstrong Lie, which compromised the Lance Armstrong scandal with clips from an abandoned glowing doc about his earlier comeback. This time, he has intercut Fela's story with a theatre group trying to mount a show about his life.
Born in 1938, Fela is considered one of the most important figures in 20th century Africa. As a pioneering composer and performer, he transformed Nigeria's musical landscape, all while standing up for human rights and criticising political corruption, often at considerable risk of retaliation from Nigeria's oppressive government. As a young man, he was influenced by jazz clubs he visited in London and Los Angeles, and returned to Lagos to start his own iconic venue, The Shrine. A lone voice against government corruption, he lived a communal life with countless wives, girlfriends and children, and he very nearly sabotaged his career with heavy drug use. But even with his death in 1997 at age 58, he challenged the Nigerian state propaganda machine, which had declared that Aids did not exist in the country.
This story is told with a superb wealth of archival footage, stills and interviews, letting Fela himself speak and sing as his life traverses the first 50 years of Nigerian independence. This is such a vitally important story of a seriously revolutionary man that it's utterly gripping. So it's rather frustrating that Gibney weaves it together with the project to tell Fela's story through a Broadway musical. The practice and performance clips offer dramatic recreations of events in Fela's life, putting his music in context, but the actual home movies and newsreel clips tell us a lot more.
Continue reading: Finding Fela Review
Fela Kuti was an phenomenally influential Nigerian musician, a pioneer of the Afrobeat musical genre and, to many people, a dangerously rebellious political revolutionary. His band The Afrika '70 became a platform for unleashing unrelenting protests against the oppressive military rule of his home country of Nigeria and he fearlessly pushed his way through life determined to bring a sense of rebellion and liberation on his fellow Africans. Even despite being beaten, jailed and slandered throughout his career following the release of politically charged albums such as 1977's 'Zombie', he kept pushing until policies regarding democracy were finally re-evaluated. This remarkable man may have caused a lot of trouble in his country, but it arguably wouldn't be what it is now without him.
Five years after the Broadway musical 'Fela! On Broadway', Oscar winning director Alex Gibney ('Taxi to the Dark Side', 'The Armstrong Lie', 'We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks') presents a new documentary based on this extraordinary musician's life and career. Featuring archival footage of interviews and performances from the man himself as well as new interviews with his relatives and those who have been inspired by him, 'Finding Fela' is scheduled for release on September 5th 2014.
This biographical documentary about disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong feels eerily gentle compared to filmmaker Alex Gibney's recent films, the WikiLeaks doc We Steal Secrets and the Catholic priest expose Mea Maxima Culpa. But then it was originally conceived as a celebration of Armstrong's comeback at the 2009 Tour de France, which is still at the heart of the film.
It was during this comeback that Armstrong's stellar image started to slip, with old rivalries and gurgling rumours surging to the surface. Gibney intercuts interviews he shot at the time with more recent chats, including a conversation immediately after Armstrong taped his notorious confessional interview with Oprah Winfrey. So we vividly see Armstrong's two-faced personality. Along the way, Gibney also traces the cyclist's remarkable rise to fame, his near death from cancer and the secret doping system he used to win the Tour de France seven times from 1999 to 2005. Armstrong's rationale is that everyone else was doing the same thing, so it was actually a level playing field.
Only of course it wasn't, because many cyclists remained clean and were edged out of the winning position as a result. Gibney also talks to a wide variety of experts, journalists and fellow riders who discuss the sport's culture of omerta (a mafia-style code of honour). From the news reports, we already know about the many years of deception, which is why society no longer holds professional athletes to such high, clean standards. It's clearly more about the money now than the human achievement. And there's so much cash to be made that competitors will break every rule there is if they think they'll get away with it.
Continue reading: The Armstrong Lie Review
There are three films in the pipeline, telling the story of the doping cyclist.
Ben Foster will play the part of Lance Armstrong in Stephen Frear’s biopic, and he will be joined by Chris O’Dowd, who’ll play journalist David Walsh, who campaigned tirelessly to expose the biggest cheating scandal in the world of sport, Deadline report.
Ben Foster and Chris O'Dowd will both star in the untitled biopic
Foster, while bearing a resemblance to the disgraced cyclist, has seen his reputation grow of late with performances in Kill Your Darlings – alongside Daniel Radcliffe - and Lone Survivor, which also stars Mark Wahlberg. The Irish actor O’Dowd has become a household name stateside due to his performances in Bridesmaids and the popular sitcom, Girls.
"He lied to me. Straight to my face. All throughout 2009" - Gibney.
Lance Armstrong’s story is an implausible, unbelievable, incredible, but none of those adjectives would be applicable if the following wasn’t: it’s true. In The Armstrong Lie, Gibney admits to rooting for the shamed cyclist, before discovering – along with the rest of the world – that he’d been cheating.
Lance Armstrong tells his side in The Armstrong Lie
Famed for his insightful, thought-provoking documentaries that explore some of the biggest happenings in culture, sport, politics and crime – even though those spectrums often collide – the route that lead Gibney to his Armstrong piece wasn’t typical.
Lance Armstrong was probably one of the most inspirational sportsmen on the planet with seven Tour De France triumphs and an Olympic medal behind him; he even overcame a severe bout of cancer in 1996 and developed popular charity, the Livestrong Foundation. However, in 2013 he found himself stripped of all his prestigious titles and relieved of his cycling career after the US Anti-Doping Agency found solid proof that he had been taking performance enhancing drugs - a claim he admitted had been happening for a large part of his career. Filmmaker Alex Gibney had set out to work on a movie based on his return to cycling in 2008 following a three year retirement, but the project turned on its head when it was revealed Armstrong had been lying to him for two years, denying all doping claims.
Oscar winner Alex Gibney ('Taxi to the Dark Side', 'Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room', 'We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks') directs this extraordinary documentary detailing Lance Armstrong's immense fall from grace. The film was originally to be called 'The Road Back', but a major name change was needed when the project took a dramatic turn. 'The Armstrong Lie' will hit the US on November 8th 2013.