LA Art Show: Andy Warhol & More

Kim Jong Ill By Bruce Edwin

The Los Angeles Art Show was as usual once again, an amazing event. Held once a year in downtown Los Angeles at the Convention Center, this years 2015 show ran for four days, with 120 art galleries from 22 countries around the world, and thousands of pieces of some of the best art work in the world. Master works here were amazing including original paintings by Andy Warhol, van Gogh, Matisse, Monet, Renoir, LaTrec, and more, as well as modern contemporary and emerging artists, illustrators, and sculptors. The VIP Patron Reception was held before the general public attended, which we were at, hosted by the lovely and talented Amy Adams, who I had the pleasure to meet and was as kind, professional, and gracious as could be. The Patron Reception benefited St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  Quality food, wine and other beverages were served to all attending patrons, who could buy their choice of many different ethnic options of food and drink, with plenty of seating area to dine during the attendance of the massive show.

Amy Adams Hollywood Sentinel

The Fine Art Prints and Art Poster Collection was again held within the art show, and directly connected to the show itself, admittable with the same ticket through a massive hallway resided the Los Angeles Jewelry, Antique, and Design show, housing nearly a hundred booths of fine jewelry, furniture, art, fashion, and antiques on display, and all—like the art adjacent, for sale.

Hollywood-Sentinel-April-2015

Galleries of note here included ACE Gallery, Arcadia, Axiom Contemporary, Bruce Lurie Gallery, Gallery Now, Masterworks Fine Art Gallery, Unix Gallery, The Estate of Bert Stern, Brisset Art Gallery, Daphne Alazraki Fine Art, Spoken Art, Barclay Samson Ltd, Steve Stein Gallery, and many, more.

DOT-Hollywood Sentinel

ANDY WARHOL: Shadows
Moca’s legendary show of Andy Warhol’s rare show here ran from September 20th, 2014 to February 2nd, 2015. Andy created these incredible works in 1978 and 1979, based on photographs he took at The Factory. This show included the full collection of paintings from Dia Art Foundation, installed edge to edge, as Andy wanted. Stunning, dreamlike work, Shadows explored the element of light, dark, shadow, and beyond light, darkness, and color, creating flowing ethereal movements of mood, emotion, vibration, and tone with harmonic clarity. Singularly one painting may connote a bell ringing back and forth, or a ghostly form floating off in to the distance, haunting the viewer and its hanging landscape. Together, the forms may suggest a continual movement of light, color and form, flickering through time and space like the shuttering of a film stock winding its way through a camera from nothing to image, to nothing and back again. Vibrant, pop, neon colors washed abruptly against solid blackness, each painting taking on a form of their own and together creating a whole rhythmic movement not unlike an abstract film stopped and blown up for one to see singularly, frame by frame, picture by picture. Shadows was a massive success, and a true honor and pleasure to see. Thank you to MOCA for this wonderful show. What follows below is a clip of Velvet Underground legend Lou Reed discussing the icon.

MCA Chicago

David Bowie-Hollywood Sentinel

As one of the most important museums in the world, in one of the greatest cities in the world, The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago brings local, national, and international exhibitions to Chicago in the realm of modern art, performance art, dance, theatre, and music. MCA
has always been one of my favorite spots in my hometown, and has always treated me well. My visit back to Chicago recently was no exception, where I got to see the sold out show of DAVID BOWIE IS. David Bowis is presented the first international exhibition of the career of David Bowie, one of the most pioneering and influential performers of our time.

New Digital Technology Debuts for Audio Guide Tour
Typically, I don’t like acoustic guided headphone tours at museums, as I like to to quietly take in the art and walk away from any crowd, however this exhibition was an exception. The audio tour here, which I played at full blast, was a great, unique, soaring collection of known and rare Bowie tracks that went along with each work, synchronized wherever one walked to each video installation or display. The great success of this utilized the new Sennheiser GuidePORT technology, which mapped trigger unit “identifiers” to play each corresponding, appropriate audio track in full 3D stereo, wherever one would walk near every Bowie ‘display zone.’ This created an intense, trippy, brilliant and rocking atmosphere unique to each viewer depending on where they walked, and always queued to the correct beats and images.

Katia Vaz-Hollywood Sentinel

Mods, rockers, new wavers, hippies, art folks, and more crowded this packed show like a rock concert, and while it wasn’t nearly as chaotic and clustered as the King Tut exhibition I saw, it was still crowded. The show here was filled with rare costumes Bowie wore on stage, rare videos, handwritten lyrics by Bowie, hand drawn sketches of his concepts for stage performances, concerts, videos, album covers, and more, and numerous rare works of black and white, color drawings, and paintings by Bowie which were very well executed and crafted. Also was included a rotating hour or so long film loop of many of Bowie’s film clips that he has been in, reminding us that he is also an actor who has had some significant and strong performances. Influenced by Japanese Kabuki theatre, German Expressionism, West End Musicals, Brechtian theatre, Surrealism, New Wave, Punk, and more, Bowie is a visionary​, genius masterful artist o​f​ multiple disciplines. I have grown up always loving his music, and this great show proved to myself and other fans alike, why his relevance is even beyond what we already know and love. The following is a video of David Bowie’s legendary song “Andy Warhol” about the artist.

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Bryan Ferry (Roxy Music) appeared later to discuss fame, music, and creative inspiration here at MCA.

Also at MCA this year and next, Artist Faheem Majeed runs from March 10 through July 7, 2015, MCA Screen: Jos de Gruyter and Harald Thys from August 8 to January 17, 2016, MCA DNA: Rafael Ferrer, May 27-January 10 2016, Anne Collier runs until March 8, 2015, Doris Salcedo from February 21 to May 24, 2015, and Kerry James Marshall runs from April 23 to September 4, 2016.

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA) is located at 220 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, 60611, U.S.
Visit: mcachicago.org

This content is ©2015, The Hollywood Sentinel / Bruce Edwin, all rights reserved. The Hollywood Sentinel does not necessarily endorse any advertisements or links that may be found on this page or videos herein.

How to Succeed In the Music Industry

swans

How to Succeed in Hollywood will resume in our next issue. The following list tells how to succeed in the music industry for bands, singers, and musicians, based on over two decades of professional experience working in the music industry, by Bruce Edwin, who has worked in publicity, A&R, tour management, tour booking, road management, band management, sound editing, concert and event production, and more. Bruce Edwin was the manager of David Williams, the guitarist of Michael Jackson, Madonna, Prince, and many others. Bruce Edwin is editor of subnormal magazine, the legendary indie, underground punk music and film magazine distributed world wide in the 90’s by Tower Records.

REIKI WITH JACLYN- HOLLYWOOD SENTINEL

How to Succeed In the Music Industry

1. Be willing to get an agent, manager, and record label or at least top distributor. If you expect to do it all yourself, you will never grow to the level of a star, because you will be too busy trying to learn a business you don’t know, instead of making music. I will cover how to get signed and how to get an agent or manager in a future issue.

2. Make videos. You should be making videos constantly, and giving away a portion of your music to promote to the fans, and selling the other 75 to 85 percent. Your videos can also be just you and the band hanging out, doing a rehearsal, or discussing life. The key is, you need to promote. Don’t worry about the image or sound quality of the videos at this point. Use your phone if have to and just record and upload, at least once a week if not daily.

3. You need to also promote online on other social media platforms. Try and get a big fan to do this job for you.

4. You need a street team promoter to hit the streets, clubs, stores and more with fliers about your new single or gig, with hard copy fliers.

5. Interact with your fans. Taylor Swift is a pro at this, which has made her fans completely obsessed with her. This is a good thing. You need (healthily) obsessed fans and in order to get that, you need to interact with them.

Katia Vaz-Hollywood Sentinel

6. Stop looking like a band. The band that looks like a band in 2015 is passe. Bands that don’t look like bands are more cool than bands that try to look like bands and copy every rock or pop cliche before them. I got an e-mail in this week from a publicist promoting a band whose lead singer has perfectly torn jeans and torn shirt, perfectly off of his shoulder, a can of soda in his hand, and a cigarette dangling from his mouth. Spare me. All that was missing was a bag of potato chips and video game joystick. In an oversaturated lightning fast culture that has seen much of it all, you need to do something different. And if one does not have enough creativity to do that, they should at least quit buying into the lame stereotypes of image and behaviour, and play against the stereotype.

7. Remember people that helped you along the way. If you fail to include people on your guest list that gave you a break, or fail to return emails of people that helped you at the beginning of your career, don’t be surprised if your career doesn’t continue rising as big as you want it to. I know many bands who made it big, but who ended up dissing their fans or the people who helped them along the way, thinking that it was all about them, when they found out the hard way that it was not all about them, it was about what value they brought to others. If you reject even a small group or even just one person who supported and helped you, don’t think that dissing just that one person can’t make a difference to your career. At the very least, if word of mouth spreading around or a powerful person doesn’t bring one back down to reality, one’s guilty conscious often punishes one’s self, and restores the karmic balance for them. I have seen this happen with the some of the most rich and famous people on the planet, and with smaller indie bands, that were on the top of their genre one year, and un-employed nobodies the next, because they were arrogant jerks that thought they could use everyone to get what they wanted, but never paid anything back and never showed any gratitude along the way.  Show gratitude, and never forget who helped make you have the opportunity of where you are. Even if you legally don’t owe them anything, have some respect for others.  If you don’t, you will surely one day find yourself poorly respected yourself, and not only back at the bottom of the hill, but prevented from even climbing back up it the next time.

elite connections revised

8. Think about what your songs communicate and what you communicate as an artist. You are an opinion leader. Do you really want your brothers, sisters, children, family, kids remembering you as the person that bragged about doing a lot of drugs, or who sang about getting high, puking in the toilet, or calling women debased names? If you don’t care today, will you care 10 years from today when your songs are still in the public? Think long term and broadly about the widespread effect your music has and will have on people. What do you want to add to the world? Is your music really benefiting people? If its your form of self therapy, will that outlet help or hinder others? Think about the big picture. Add goodness to the world. There is enough worthless, low value, trash music out there that should be forgotten and often is. Make a positive difference with what you communicate at all levels.

9. Avoid “pay for play” unless you can make a profit. Pay for play is when a venue says that will give you a gig if you sell enough tickets for them. This may seem unfair, that you are doing the venues job for them, but really its not. It is not the clubs job to give you a break or try help make you famous or known. That’s your job. Certainly, some clubs are successful enough that they already have a big enough built in crowd that they are always packed no matter who plays, and they can therefore take a chance on booking new talent. While the days of CBGB’s in NYC and The Gallery in Normal, Illinois are over, there are fortunately, still some clubs that still take chances on new bands. If you are offered bookings that don’t, where you have to pre-sell tickets to get the gig, and you are responsible for the money if you don’t sell the tickets, avoid that scenario unless you can really sell all of the tickets. If you can’t get the amount of tickets sold that a pay to play venue wants from you, then you have one or two problems. Either one, your music and band is not good enough to be marketable and create the demand to get enough fans, or two, you have not promoted yourselves enough, or don’t know how. If the music is lacking, then you need to fix that, fast, which only comes from more and more practice and training. If it is the marketing and promotion that is lacking, then you need to take responsibility for that yourself, or get someone qualified and experienced to help you. If you need help with this, call my office.

Richard Bernard Hollywood Sentinel 2014

10. Be willing to play for free. Be also willing to play for pay. I read a recent blog about how musicians shouldn’t be expected to play for free, because other professionals get paid so musicians should too. This is what we call in philosophy, the bandwagon technique, and does not always match reality. One needs food to survive, and will pay for it. One does not need music to survive (unless you are a fanatic like myself!) and so people pay in accordance to the value that they place on things. Bands that people love the most after that band getting more attention, have a higher value in the marketplace than a more unknown band that might be decent, but is not great. Furthermore, when one is in an area of the arts where the stakes are so high that one can become immensely rich or famous in that area if they excel greatly, then there is greater competition, and more people willing to make more sacrifices in order to make it big. Be willing to play for free—yes, but what I mean by this is, not to sell yourself short, but to love what you do so much that you would do it for free if you had to. Create your music for the love and passion of the music, not for the money. If you create from this passion, then the money will follow. And if you ever do play for free, be sure to stop half way through the set after a particularly great sounding song, and have someone on your team walk around the crowd with a can collecting money, letting the audience know that if what you do has value to them, if what you do is worth as much or even more than a bottle of beer or drink, than to give as much as they can and help you survive, because this is how you make your living or are at least trying to make your living. Don’t be afraid to ask for money on the spot from your audience. Communicate that need, and if you are good enough, and they like you enough, they will pay. You don’t have to wait for the venue or booker to pay you. Earn it from your fans on the spot, and, be sure to not sign any contract stating that you can’t make money from the audience or on your merchandise. So when I say be willing to play for free, be willing to, but also be willing to get paid. And if you are good enough, and ask with enough sincerity and directness, you will get paid.

For more information on the talent manager and to contact Bruce Edwin, visit:www.BruceEdwin.com.

Hollywood Hot Spot
Bar Sinister 2015

Bar Sinister is without a doubt, one of the best clubs in Los Angeles, where one isn’t subjected to dreadful Top 40, and throngs of jacked up jocks in blue jeans and sneakers. No, Bar Sinister is the place where those types not only would be out of place, they don’t even get through the door typically, with a dress code here that is strictly enforced. Fans of Marilyn Manson, Bauhuas, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Death in June, Nine Inch Nails, Rammstein, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and the Misfits find this hallowed ground home, and for good reason. Bar Sinister isn’t just about the music, or the look, but like the so called Gothic/Industrial scene itself. It is a lifestyle and state of mind. With one large indoor dance room, sexy go-go girls on dance blocks bumping the night away, and an outdoor dance floor and concert area with a stage for bands, Bar Sinister is one of the best parties in town, again and again. Sexy DJ Amanda Jones reigns the room with pulsing beats of punk, gothic, industrial, acid house, and more; while a recent night Saturday had more dance than anything dark or industrial, it was still fun, and unlike some DJ’s, Amanda knows how to read the rythem of the crowd and keep things jamming. Upstairs is the staple dungeon, where attractive young women and men perform their 50 Shades of Gray scenarios in front of a gazing audience dressed in leather, lace, latex and PVC. The crowd at Bar Sinister, aside from the music and moonlit atmosphere, is the best reason to go. The crowd here ranges from club kids to the weekend revelers, and satisfyingly, they look mostly beautiful. Like this chick in one punk documentary on the 70’s punk scene I once saw stated, “Their look, their outfits, their hair, their make up, is an extension of themselves. They look so sculpted and beautiful.” Indeed. It’s places like Bar Sinister that the fashion industry and filmmakers often use as influence for the next new creation, inspired by such a lovely audience. On this night, I happened to help break up a fight before the bouncer got close enough to throw some jerk out. Energies do run high in clubs in Hollywood, so, bring in some good energy, dress to impress, and be cool. You know we will.

Bar Sinister: 1652 N Cherokee Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028 10pm – 3am, Saturday nights.  – subnormal magazine

Calendar

March

14. Blue Oyster Cult, Saban Theatre
21. David Cassidy, Saban Theatre
Make Peace Day, Peace Museum launch and
peace rally, at 5464 Wilshire Blvd.
24. Gang of Four, Public Access TV, El Rey
Tings Tings, Fonda

April

11. TV Land Awards, Saban Theatre
14. Swans with Angel Olsen, El Rey
17. Pat Benetar and Neil Giraldo, Saban Theatre
30. Artopia, art and music fest, Container Yard, DTLA

May

1. They Might Be Giants, The Regent, DTLA

SWANS

Michael Gira / Swans / Angels of Light: Michael Gira founded the seminal NYC band Swans in 1982. Quickly infamous for their punishing, brutal and repetitive onslaughts of sound, extreme volume levels, and the self-abusing, abject shouts and growls of Gira’s sloganeering vocals, Swans gradually transformed over 15 years, ultimately venturing into harsh mechanical proto-industrial rock, to sprawling shifts of texture and perspective (see the bucolic atmospheric folk idles and martial stomps of their much heralded Children of God double LP from 1987), to gentle acoustic-based songs, and finally on to their ultimate statement, Soundtracks For The Blind (1997) which somehow incorporated all of these elements at once, across well over 2 hours of music in one album. At this point, Gira called it quits after 15 years of relentless touring and productivity, and disbanded Swans.

Since 1999 Gira has released his music under the name Angels Of Light. He writes the songs for Angels Of Light on acoustic guitar and orchestrates them using a shifting cadre of musicians, employing a wide variety of instrumentation such as strings, wind, brass, electric guitars, electronics and choral vocals. The songs are often eccentric and extreme, in keeping with Gira’s love of soundtrack music. Though nominally more traditional than Swans, Angels Of Light is often just as hard hitting through different means. The most recent album by Angels Of Light is We Are Him. When not recording, writing music, or touring, Gira spends his time producing and releasing music through his label Young God Records. He’s been responsible for such notable talents as Devendra Banhart, Lisa Germano, Akron/Family, Larkin Grimm, and James Blackshaw. Recently, Gira decided to Re-activate Swans. Here’s what he has to say about that decision at the YGR website:

“About reconstituting Swans: … there was a point a few years ago during a particular show when I was on tour with Angels Of Light, with Akron/Family serving as the backing band. It was during the song The Provider. Seth’s guitar was sustaining one open chord (very loudly), rising to a peak, then crashing down again in a rhythm that could have been the equivalent of a deep and soulful act of copulation. The whole band swayed with this arc. Really was like riding waves of sound. I thought right then, “You know, Michael, Swans wasn’t so bad after all…” . Ha ha! It brought back – in a flood – memories, or maybe not memories, more a tangible re-emersion in the sensation of Swans music rushing through my body in waves, lifting me up towards what, I can only assume, will be my only experience of heaven. It’s difficult – and probably pointless – to try to describe this experience. It’s ecstatic, I suppose – a force of simultaneous self negation and rebirth. Really, I probably only experienced this a handful of times to such an extreme extent during the entire 15 year history of Swans. All the elements have to align perfectly, and you can’t force it, though you might constantly strive for it. I don’t mean to be too lofty here, but it’s a fact. I’m talking about my own experience of the music (though I’d hope people in the audiences along the way might have experienced a similar episode).

When I ask myself if I believe in God, I start to say NO, but then I remember that sensation, and I’m not so sure. So I want more of that, before my body breaks down to such an extent that it won’t be possible any more. So I’m doing it. Naturally, some of the material for this new record will be songs, centered around the voice and words. Other parts (I’m hoping) will be reaching for what I’ve described above. One thing I want to point out right now: THIS IS NOT A REUNION. It’s not some dumb nostalgia act. It is not repeating the past. After 5 Angels Of Light albums, I needed a way to move FORWARD, in a new direction, and it just so happens that revivifying the idea of Swans is allowing me to do that. I’ll be using what I learned in the last several years to inform the way this new material develops, while carrying forward from where Swans left off with its final album Soundtracks For The Blind, and in particular, Swans Are Dead. If you have expectations about how Swans should be, that’s your business, but it would be a disservice to both of us if I were to make music with your needs in mind, and the music would certainly suffer as a result. In any event, I certainly never thought this day would arrive, but it’s inevitable, it’s here, it’s fate, so I’m succumbing to it.

Helping me in this quest are the fantastic musicians and friends listed below. I’ll enter the studio with the songs, we’ll hash them out together, someone will come up with something unexpected, then that will lead to new ideas, the song will take a different trajectory and the material will grow on its own. This is what I’m hoping, anyway. Here’s the main musicians (though probably a lot of guests on the recording). These are the people best suited – in terms of my relationship with them and their particular musical attributes – to help move the music forward: Michael Gira / guitar / voice / mendicant friar act; (original swans) ; Norman Westberg – guitar; (original swans) ; Christoph Hahn – guitar; (mid period swans and most angels); Phil Puleo – drums, percussion, dulcimer etc etc (final swans tour and most angels); Chris Pravdica – bass and gadgets (flux information sciences / services/ gunga din); Thor Harris – drums, percussion, vibes, dulcimer, curios, keys, etc etc… (angels, now also with Shearwater) … at the time of this writing the album is still in progress. Additional guests so far include Devendra Banhart; Bill Rieflin (drummer for REM) and Grasshopper of Mercury Rev… ”  (Content extracted from the El Rey Website, and also ©2015, M. Gira.)

Season of Ghosts just released a new single that has a massive sound and energy, here below:

©2015, The Hollywood Sentinel

Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything

Presenter, Cate Blanchett poses with Eddie Redmayne backstage with the Oscar® for Performance by an actor in a Leading role, for work on “The Theory of Everything” during the live ABC Telecast of The 87th Oscars® at the Dolby® Theatre in Hollywood, CA on Sunday, February 22, 2015.

The following is an exclusive interview backstage at The Oscars this year 2015 with Eddie Redmayne. Eddie Redmayne won for best Performance by an Actor in a leading role, for his work in the film The Theory of Everything.

Interview with Eddie Redmayne

Question: Congratulations so much for this win. We actually spoke a couple of months ago about your work with a ballet dancer to work on the degenerative parts of the disease and to sort of work them into a choreography. Could you tell them a little bit about that?

elite connections revised

Eddie Redmayne:  Absolutely. So when I was approaching the film, we knew we weren’t going to be out of shoot chronologically.  So we were going to have to jump into different stages in Stephen’s life and within the same day. And so I didn’t want for Stephen—the illness was of very little interest to him after he was diagnosed. He’s someone that lives forward and lives passionately. And so, similarly, I didn’t want the film to be about the physicality. So I wanted to have the physicality so embedded in me that we could play the human story, the love story. And so I went to ALS clinics in London for about four months with a choreographer, wonderful Alex Reynolds, and she helped to sort of train my muscles to sustain those positions for long periods of time.

(…) their support (The Hawking family) throughout has been amazing. Any excuse to go back to Cambridge, it’s such a beautiful place. So, yeah, I will definitely go and show (the award to them). [words in parenthesis, the editor].

Question:  (…) I wanted to ask you about the pressures of playing someone that is still alive because obviously there’s a lot of biopics, and there obviously is a huge weight like for Alan Turing and “The Imitation Game.” But with this, that person is going to watch that movie. How did you feel about it and how did that change your approach to it?

Eddie Redmayne:  I don’t know if it changed my approach, but what it did was there were various things of this job. I—in preparation, I met people living with ALS, they let me into their lives, they were incredibly kind to me. It was essential to me that I was authentic to what that experience is like. Then it’s about the science, getting the science right, you know, and then of course the main thing about Stephen, Jane, Jonathan and the kids is being true to them and then also making an entertaining film. There were basically so many things that like terrified me about this film, but of course it galvanizes you, it makes you—when the stakes are that high, it does force you to work harder and so that’s what I tried to do. And yeah, it’s been amazing.

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Best Music: Alexandre Desplat

The following is an interview with Alexandre Desplat backstage at the Oscars. Alexandre Desplat won the 2015 Oscar for Best Music, Original Score, for his music in the film “The Grand Budapest Hotel.” Alexandre was also nominated for his music in the film “The Imitation Game.”

Alexandre Desplat: Interview

Question: I know you’ve worked with Wes Anderson before. Can you talk a little bit about the give and take between the two of you, how much does he approve, how much does he disapprove, and how much freedom do you really get?

Alexandre Desplat:  Well, it’s all—it’s all him. Actually, he should have won this award. Well, you know, Wes, as any great director, is very detailed. He likes to be precise, obsessively, but like not different from Morten Tyldum, (…) or Jacques Audiard.  They are (…) great directors, and so they are very demanding; and they want everything to fit perfectly in. The thing about Wes’s movie (…) and in his previous movies we have done together, “Mr. Fox” and “Moonrise Kingdom,” music is really interwoven very strongly to the editing, to the rhythm of the film. I guess that’s the most important thing in our relationship. And, also, when we sit together in my studio, very quickly (…)—we get excited about ideas, and I try to give a shape to that musically very quickly. And (…) it’s like arborescence, you know, you find an idea that brings another one. And we really work on the same level and very, very closely.

Maureen O’Hara
2015 Honorary Awards recipient

Maureen O’Hara first captured the public’s eye in her breakout role as the dancing gypsy, Esmeralda, in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. She has held our attention ever since. Known for playing feisty heroines, O’Hara’s famously flame-red hair lit up the screen like no other star from Hollywood’s golden age. In a career that has spanned over seventy-five years, she has starred in over sixty motion pictures including such critically acclaimed classics as Miracle on 34th Street, The Quiet Man, and How Green Was My Valley. She is widely recognized as Ireland’s most renowned and celebrated actress.

Born Maureen FitzSimons on August 17, 1920 in Ranelagh, Ireland, O’Hara began acting at age five with her own shadow. She studied at the Ena Mary Burke School of Elocution and Drama and by age ten had joined the Rathmines Theatre Company working in amateur productions. She was soon hired by Radio Telefis Eireann (RTE) to perform classic plays over the radio reaching nearly every household in Ireland.

As a teenager, Maureen FitzSimons joined the famed Abbey Theatre and worked nights typing tags at a local laundry. She was offered a leading role with the Abbey Players at age seventeen but chose instead to take a motion picture screen test in London at the request of Elstree Studios. Her screen test caught the attention of Oscar-winning actor and producer Charles Laughton, who quickly signed her to a seven-year contract. Laughton launched his new protégé’s film career by casting her as his niece, Mary Yellan, in Alfred Hitchcock’s Jamaica Inn (1939) and by changing her screen name to Maureen O’Hara.

Maureen O’Hara first arrived in Hollywood in 1939 to make her American film debut (opposite Laughton’s Quasimodo) in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. She was unable to return to Ireland with the outbreak of World War II and became part of Hollywood’s studio system when her contract was sold to RKO Pictures. In 1941, O’Hara achieved critical acclaim for her haunting portrayal of Angharad in the Welsh family saga How Green Was My Valley, which marked her first collaboration with legendary director John Ford. The film went on to win five Oscars including Best Picture and Best Director.

During the 1940s and 1950s, O’Hara was often cast in lavish Technicolor movies. Her fiery characters and striking features earned her the nickname “Queen of Technicolor.” O’Hara is also the first female action star, having performed many of her own stunts and sword fighting sequences in swashbuckling pictures. The most notable include The Black Swan with Tyrone Power, Sinbad the Sailor with Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and At Sword’s Point with Cornel Wilde. In 1947, O’Hara appeared in the holiday classic Miracle on 34th Street, playing a single mother whose sensibilities are challenged by Santa Claus.

Katia Vaz-Hollywood Sentinel

This period in O’Hara’s career is also highlighted by her frequent work with John Ford and John Wayne. Her screen chemistry with Wayne was dynamic and she served as “the Duke’s leading lady” in a series of Ford films including Rio Grande, The Wings of Eagles, and her personal favorite, The Quiet Man.

O’Hara turned to lighter roles in the 1960s appearing in family comedies such as The Parent Trap, Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation, McLintock!, and Spencer’s Mountain. In 1971, she reunited with John Wayne a final time in the western comedy Big Jake, before retiring to operate a Caribbean commuter airline with her husband, aviator Charles F. Blair. Upon Blair’s tragic death in a plane crash, O’Hara became the first woman in United States history to head a scheduled commercial airline.  In 1991, following a 20-year hiatus, O’Hara returned to the silver screen to play John Candy’s overbearing Irish mother in the bittersweet comedy Only the Lonely. She later starred in a string of television movies and published her bestselling memoir, Tis Herself, in 2004.

Hayao Miyazaki
2015 Honorary Awards recipient

Born in 1941 in Tokyo, Japan. After graduating from Gakushuin University in 1963 with a degree in Political Science and Economics, Hayao Miyazaki joined Toei Animation Company as an animator. He worked under the director Isao Takahata for scene planning and key animation for the production of THE LITTLE NORSE PRINCE VALIANT (1968). He then moved to the animation studio A Production with Takahata in 1971 where he worked on the original concept, screenplay, layout design and key animation for PANDA! GO PANDA! (1972). Miyazaki worked at various studios including Zuiyo Eizo with Takahata, Nippon Animation, and Telecom, and did scene planning and layout designs for the TV series HEIDI, A GIRL OF THE ALPS (1974) and FROM THE APENNINES TO THE ANDES (1976), and directed his first TV series CONAN, THE BOY IN FUTURE (1978). He debuted as a director of theatrical features with THE CASTLE OF CAGLIOSTRO (1979). In 1984, Miyazaki wrote and directed his feature NAUSICAÄ OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND, based on his original graphic novel serialized in the monthly animation magazine “Animage”.

Miyazaki co-founded Studio Ghibli in 1985 with Takahata, and has directed nine feature films since, including CASTLE IN THE SKY (1986), MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (1988), KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (1989), PORCO ROSSO (1992) and PRINCESS MONONOKE (1997).  SPIRITED AWAY (2001) broke every box office record in Japan, and garnered many awards, including the Golden Bear at the 2002 Berlin International Film Festival and the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film at the 2003 U.S. Academy Awards. HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE (2004) received the Osella Award at the 2004 Venice International Film Festival.  Miyazaki was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 2005 Venice International Film Festival.  He wrote and directed PONYO ON THE CLIFF BY THE SEA (2008). He contributed to the planning and wrote the screenplays for Hiromasa Yonebayashi’s ARRIETTY (2010) and Goro Miyazaki’s FROM UP ON POPPY HILL (2011). In 2012, Miyazaki was named a “Person of Cultural Merit” by The Government of Japan.

Miyazaki has published a number of books of essays, drawings and poems, including “Shuppatsuten 1979-1996 (Starting Point: 1979- 1996, 1996)”. He has designed several buildings, including the Ghibli Museum, Mitaka, which opened in 2001, for which he serves as Executive Director. His new film, THE WIND RISES, opened in July 2013 in Japan.

TV Series
CONAN, THE BOY IN FUTURE (Mirai Shonen Konan), 1978

Feature Films
THE CASTLE OF CAGLIOSTRO (Rupan Sansei Kariosutoro no Shiro), 1979
NAUSICAÄ OF THE VALLEY OF THE WIND (Kaze no Tani no Nausicaä), 1984
CASTLE IN THE SKY (Tenku no Shiro Laputa), 1986
MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (Tonari no Totoro), 1988
KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (Majo no Takkyubin), 1989
PORCO ROSSO (Kurenai no Buta), 1992
PRINCESS MONONOKE (Mononoke Hime), 1997
SPIRITED AWAY (Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi), 2001
HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE (Hauru no Ugoku Shiro), 2004
PONYO ON THE CLIFF BY THE SEA (Gake no Ue no Ponyo), 2008
THE WIND RISES (Kaze Tachinu), 2013

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