Monday, November 30, 2009


Huge, the directorial debut from British comedian Ben Miller, has started shooting in London.

The screenplay is based on an original play co-written by Jez Butterworth, Ben Miller and Simon Godley.

Miller, who started out in the film industry as an actor, said: “I’ve dreamt for years of directing a film and now I am directing the film of my dreams. I am literally pinching myself with pliers to be helming such a charabanc of talent on such a rollicking ride.”

Noel Clarke, Johnny Harris, Thandie Newton, Russell Tovey and Michelle Ryan star in the story about two friends who are trying to break onto the comedy circuit.

The film is produced by Rebecca Farhall and Colin Jones. Executive producers are Nigel Thomas and Charlotte Walls of Matador Pictures.

It is a Toff Media production in association with Matador Pictures and is backed by Cinema Three.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Premiere of the Letter 20th November 2009

Phoebe Philo, Saffron Aldridge, Tom Dixon, Matthew Williamson, Francesca Versace, and a clutch of other London VIPs descended on the private members’ club Home House on Friday night to see the premiere of Letter, a short promotional film produced by jeweler Solange Azagury-Patridge starring her pal Thandie Newton. “I have lunch with Solange about once a week,” said the actress. “She always has these secret things going on that I have to try to extract out of her. When she finally told me she was planning this and wanted me to be in it, well, I jumped.”

Who wouldn’t love the chance to wear one of Azagury-Partridge’s baubles? Newton paired her iridescent lavender Vivienne Westwood gown with the star piece from her friend’s new Stoned collection. It’s the same one she wears in the movie, in which she plays a femme fatale preparing to leave her hapless husband for her lover—but not without her jewels. “The film is my letter, in a way, to all the fabulous women out there,” said Azagury-Partridge. “We really are all fab, aren’t we? And sometimes, it’s nice, but not quite enough to put a ring on it.”

To be sure, the filmvert left many in the crowd wanting to buy a bauble rather urgently. But, sadly, we’ll have to wait until next month for the gems to come out. “December, grrr,” said Versace. “Forget it. I want it now—excuse me while I schmooze Solange.”

Saturday, November 14, 2009

2012 still

2012 interview

Thandie Newton had to get serious on the set of new disaster movie 2012
By John Hiscock on Nov 13, 09 05:00 AM in Interviews

Film prankster Thandie Newton is known for her practical jokes on movie sets. While shooting Run Fatboy Run, she switched Simon Pegg's water bottle for vodka and sewed up the neck and sleeves of his T-shirts. However, Thandie had to put aside the joking on the set of her latest movie, the disaster blockbuster 2012, because she was just too tired.

"This movie required a lot of stamina," says the 37-year-old, London-born actress. "There were huge sets, lots of cameras and it was kind of exhausting. Also, because there were so many people involved, there was less of a family feel to it.

"When I was working on Run Fatboy Run, it was really a tiny crew. We were all hanging out together and much more in each other's pockets. On 2012, when I'd finished a scene I'd go back to my trailer and just collapse."

The new $200m extravaganza from director Roland Emmerich uses spectacular computer-generated special effects to depict a global cataclysm that brings the world to an end. Cities crumble and millions die in a series of eye-popping natural disasters while a few survivors struggle to stay alive.

Thandie plays the US President's daughter who begins a relationship with a geologist, played by Chiwetel Ejiofor, while they are fighting for survival.

"Some of the cast are in the thick of the action, like John Cusack and Amanda Peet who are fighting for their lives," says Thandie.

"But because I play the president's daughter I'm kept very safe throughout the movie.

"The only really big action scenes I was involved in were two water sequences - one where I'm in a corridor and this huge tidal wave comes bursting down towards us. It was amazing but I forgot to act because gallons of water were rushing down from floor to ceiling towards me. The director had to shout "cut" and all the water went down. I don't even know where it drained to. Then 10 minutes later we did it again and the water comes rushing round the corner, blasting down the set."

As we chat, Thandie looks cool and relaxed in her white minidress in a beachfront suite at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Cancun, Mexico, where many of the 2012 cast had been flown for a party and promotional interviews.

Married for 10 years to English writer-director Oliver Parker, they have two children - nine-year-old Ripley, named after Sigourney Weaver's character in Alien, and Nico, four, named after the Velvet Underground singer.

Despite her success in films - including Mission Impossible: 2, The Pursuit Of Happyness and W - Thandie maintains she never had any special ambitions to be an actress.

Her parents, a Zambian nurse mother and a laboratory technician father, lived in the African country, but Thandie was born during a trip back to England. The family then returned to Zambia, but moved to Penzance in Cornwall when she was three years old.

"There were very few black people in the town and we were almost a novelty," Thandie recalls. "I always saw being black as a mysterious element I could use to enrich my personality. Then I went into the arts where difference is celebrated so I've never really experienced racial hassle."

In between her film commitments, the actress has returned to Africa on several occasions and she taught at Oprah Winfrey's school in South Africa for 10 days in July. But for now she has high hopes that filmgoers will appreciate the ingenuity that has gone into making 2012.

"It's just extraordinary to be able to create an illusion that takes you on a journey like this," Thandie smiles. "To have been able to push the boundaries like this is a real achievement."

2012 is out today.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Thandie Newton WOWS on new InStyle cover shoot

Thandie Newton reveals her secret to keeping trim at 37... yoga and working out hard in the gym
By Lizzie Smith

Posing provocatively in an open fronted white blazer, Thandie Newton looks the picture of unachievable Hollywood perfection.
But the 37-year-old mother-of-two claims there's no secret to her amazing figure.
It's simply down to good genetics, hard work at the gym and yoga.
No flirt: Thandie Newton says she doesn't use her sexuality in her relationships with other men, and has never dated an actor
(she lived in LA with Jude Law..and went out with Brad Pitt...Quinn)

'I’m a Jivamukti yoga freak – it’s food for my soul,' she says. 'When I’m not working, I’ll drop Rip off at school and Nico at nursery, then I go to yoga.

'I also have an amazing personal trainer who I see whenever I can. His name is Liston Wingate-Denys.'
Jivamukti yoga involves physically stimulating routines, along with meditation, Sanskrit chanting, Yogic philosophical teachings and deep relaxation.

Thandie, the daughter of a Zimbabwean Princess of the Shona tribe and an English father, is the mother of Ripley, nine, and Nico, five.
Despite forging a career as an A-list actress with roles in films such as Crash, W and 2012, Thandie has managed to avoid becoming tabloid fodder.
The Cambridge graduate, who grew up in Cornwall, has been happily married to writer Ol Parker for 11 years.
In her latest interview with InStyle magazine she says she doesn't flirt with men.
'I’ve never dated an actor, just had the odd fling,' she said. 'Isn’t that weird?
'I don’t flirt with people – a long time ago, I stopped using my sexuality to have a relationship with people.

'I don’t think you really get a sense of me, sexually, and that’s why I have really great relationships with straight men.'
And she says he is supportive of her work - even when it involves intimate sex scenes.
'He heard it from my point of view, which is that love scenes are unnatural and not something that I leap out of bed in the morning to rush off to do,' she said.

Introducing InStyle’s new cover girl: Thandie Newton

Thandie Newton had every InStyler wishing they were her at the recent cover shoot for the December issue.

Not only is she intelligent (she studied Anthropology at Cambridge) and a Bafta-winner (Crash), she’s also open and down to earth (yes, that was the f-word that slipped out a couple of times!).

The RocknRolla actress was impossibly stunning for the shoot, working heavenly Chanel and fashion-forward Louis Vuitton to weep-worthy effect.

And how does the mum of two girls keep a body a 20-year-old would wish for at 37? ‘That’s genetic!’ she laughs, ‘and I’m a Jivamukti yoga freak – it’s food for my soul.

‘When I’m not working, I’ll drop Rip off at school and Nico at nursery, then I go to yoga. I also have an amazing personal trainer who I see whenever I can.’

And it certainly pays off!

For the full Thandie interview, where she opens up about love, life, fashion and being friends with Oprah, grab the December issue of InStyle – out

Wednesday, November 04, 2009