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Law passed enabling actors to remove age from IMDb

California’s Customer Records bill has been welcomed by actors’ union SAG-AFTRA as a welcome challenge to age discrimination in the film industry

Signed into law … California Governor Jerry Brown.
Signed into law … California Governor Jerry Brown. Photograph: Lucy Nicholson / Reuters/Reuters

The state of California has passed legislation that will enable actors and other film industry workers to remove their ages from the Internet Movie Database and other publicly accessible websites.

The Customer Records bill, numbered AB-1687, was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on 24 September and specifies that subscribers to a “commercial online entertainment employment service provider” can demand that age information be removed. The rationale is to “ensure that information … regarding an individual’s age will not be used in furtherance of employment or age discrimination.”

Actors union SAG-AFTRA had campaigned in favour of the bill, with the organisation’s president Gabrielle Carteris writing on 16 September: “Age discrimination is a major problem in our industry, and it must be addressed. SAG-AFTRA has been working hard for years to stop the career damage caused by the publication of performers’ dates of birth on online subscription websites used for casting like IMDb.”

Though the bill covers all occupations, its effect on actors has been the focus of reporting in the wake of Junie Hoang’s failed bid in 2013 to get her age removed from IMDb.

All the President’s Men 1976

Director: Alan J. Pakula
all-the-presidents-men-1976

Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford, Jack Warden

To call All the President’s Men a movie about the Watergate scandal would be to miss its point entirely. Because while the downfall of a president is certainly part of the film’s resolution, the 137 minutes preceding that are about the nitty-gritty of the newspaper business. And viewers have Ben Bradlee, executive editor of The Washington Post (played by Jason Robards in the film) during the time of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s investigation into Richard Nixon’s clandestine dealings, to thank for that as much as they do star/producer Robert Redford.

Concerned about the light in which the film might paint his profession and the reporters and editors who inhabit it, Bradlee realized that the mere act of cooperation could help shape the film’s direction. “We’re all in the position that we didn’t have any choice about this movie—it would be made regardless—and I could see that,” Bradlee stated in a 1975 interview with his own paper. “Lacking that choice, it seemed to make more sense to try to influence it factually than to just stick our heads in the sand.” As a result, the filmmakers made sure every detail—from the mounds of research, articles and documents collected by Woodward and Bernstein to the desks their big-screen counterparts sat at—were perfectly replicated. The result is a painstakingly accurate recounting of two reporters’ bumpy path to uncovering an ugly truth.

Based on True Facts

Strongly Recommended

 

 

In this file photo provided by Warner Bros., actors Robert Redford, right, and Dustin Hoffman appear in their roles as reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, respectively, in the 1976 film "All the President's Men." Personal details about the film and Watergate enliven a Discovery network documentary, "All the President's Men Revisited" which airs Sunday at 8 p.m. ET. (AP Photo/Warner Bros., file)
In this file photo provided by Warner Bros., actors Robert Redford, right, and Dustin Hoffman appear in their roles as reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, respectively, in the 1976 film “All the President’s Men.” Personal details about the film and Watergate enliven a Discovery network documentary, “All the President’s Men Revisited” which airs Sunday at 8 p.m. ET. (AP Photo/Warner Bros., file)

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The Pianist 2002

thepianistDirector: Roman Polanski
Stars: Adrien Brody, Emilia Fox, Frank Finlay

Nearly a decade after turning down the chance to direct Schindler’s List, director Roman Polanski released his own Holocaust story. And while it wasn’t exactly an autobiography—the movie is about pianist Władysław Szpilman (played by Adrien Brody), who is forced to live in the Warsaw Ghetto during Nazi Germany’s invasion of Poland—Polanski, who managed to escape from the Kraków Ghetto following the death of his mother as a child, inserted enough personal experience to make it feel that way.

Keeping with his reputation as a director who does not shy away from truth—regardless of how disturbing it may—The Pianist holds nothing back in its depiction of the Holocaust’s extreme atrocities. The camera doesn’t flinch when young children are beaten to death, innocent men and women are gunned down and executed in the streets, piles of dead bodies are set afire and a man in a wheelchair is hurled off a balcony, fatally crashing into the ground below. It’s not an easy watch, but it’s a powerful one.

Based on True Events

Strongly Recommended