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Author Topic: Milk - The Movie  (Read 120098 times)

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Milk - The Movie
« on: November 23, 2008, 12:50:21 PM »
This thread is for conversations, plans, etc. related to the movie 'Milk'

Here is the Focus Feature page on the film:

http://www.filminfocus.com/focusfeatures/film/milk/

Here's the place where you can 'share your story':

And here's where you can share your story:

http://www.filminfocus.com/focusfeatures/film/milk/mosaic/
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2008, 06:30:41 PM »
Here's Ruthie Stein's article from the S.F. Chronicle on the making of 'Milk'

The making of Van Sant's Harvey Milk biopic
Ruthe Stein
Sunday, November 23, 2008

A movie about Harvey Milk was a long time gestating. Back in 1992, when it looked as if Robin Williams would play the martyred San Francisco politician, he joked that he could identify with Milk coming out in San Francisco because "I came out there, too, as a comic." Over the years, Daniel Day-Lewis, Kevin Kline, Richard Gere, Kevin Spacey, James Woods and Steve Carell were all prospective Harvey Milks.

The role went to Sean Penn, and the conviction with which he inhabits it diminishes any thought of an alternative Milk. Yet when Penn signed on to star in "Milk" late last year, the possibility still loomed of another biopic - this one based on Randy Shilts' biography "The Mayor of Castro Street" - shooting at the same time and in the same locations.

Penn insisted on assurances that the other version would not film at City Hall while he was emoting there.

"Sean needed that just for clarity," "Milk" director Gus Van Sant said. "It would be like mixing two soups at the same time. The crews would be overlapping, and the Harveys would be running into each other."

Penn needn't have worried. Just as "Milk" was blessed with everything quickly falling into place, the other project seemed somehow doomed. Screenwriters had been attempting to adapt Shilts' book for 16 years, resulting in an estimated 20 drafts. The latest one was caught in limbo because of the 2007 writers' strike. Bryan Singer, who was to direct, became busy with "Superman Returns" and "Valkyrie." To make matters worse, Warner Independent Pictures, the boutique film division backing the project, was shut down in May by its parent company, Warner Bros.

In his only interview on the subject, Craig Zadan, producer of the at least temporarily moribund "Mayor of Castro Street" project, told the Los Angeles Times, "When it became clear that the other movie was going first, we felt as if Harvey Milk had died again. After spending 16 years living with this story, it was like being in mourning.

In its earliest incarnation, the "Mayor of Castro Street" movie was to be a major Hollywood production with a budget set at $40 million, the equivalent of $60 million to $70 million in today's dollars. A very hot Oliver Stone - coming off successes with "Wall Street" and "JFK" - was brought in to direct.

Van Sant, who made "Milk" for $20 million, thinks a more hefty budget might have constrained a filmmaker.

"You know the Castro was a wild place, and they might have felt they couldn't show that," he said.

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/21/PKQ8142OJ3.DTL&type=movies
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2008, 06:33:24 PM »
'Milk' actors and the people they play
Reyhan Harmanci
Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sean Penn's transformation into Harvey Milk may amaze moviegoers - even close associates of Milk's, such as his former aide Cleve Jones, say the resemblance is uncanny - but "Milk" is no documentary. Here is a side-by-side chart of the actors and the people portrayed, with some fact-checking help from Jones, who served as a consultant on the film.

Sean Penn: The 48-year-old award-winning actor and sometime Chronicle contributor who lives in Marin County has not shied away from politics in his personal life, making his role as Milk a natural fit. He is rumored to have text-messaged his former wife, Madonna, after kissing actor James Franco, who told Out magazine that Penn wrote, "I just popped my cherry kissing a guy. I thought of you. I don't know why."

What's next: At least two movies in 2009, "Crossing Over," also starring Harrison Ford, and "The Tree of Life," an adaption of Denis Johnson's award-winning book on the Vietnam War.

Harvey Milk: The San Francisco supervisor, who was assassinated by Dan White in 1978, was the first openly gay person elected to high office. The "Milk" biopic has been years in the making, with at least two scripts floating around. While Milk has been a local hero for decades, most people outside the Bay Area would know him from the Academy Award-winning 1984 documentary "The Life and Times of Harvey Milk," directed by Rob Epstein.

Emile Hirsch: The 23-year-old actor knows one of his co-stars especially well - Sean Penn directed Hirsch in his career-making turn as the star of "Into the Wild" (2007). Jones says that Hirsch's onscreen portrayal of him was heartily endorsed by some people who have known Jones for a long time: Jones' mother, father and sister. "They all agree that Emile really did it," Jones says. "I had that big silly hair."

What's next: Another groovy period piece, "Taking Woodstock," directed by Ang Lee.

Cleve Jones: As the film shows, Jones, now 54, was a young hustler with big glasses who met Milk on the street and became a key Milk adviser in City Hall. The real Jones says the chronology is a bit off - Jones had stopped hustling by 1975 and was already a political person - but other than that, the film got it right.

What's next: After Milk's assassination, Jones became an AIDS activist, co-founding the San Francisco AIDS Foundation in 1983, and creating the Names Project AIDS Memorial Quilt in 1987. He now lives in Southern California and will continue to work as a community organizer for the UNITE HERE union.

James Franco: The 30-year-old actor was most recently seen starring as the stoner hero of the Judd Apatow-produced "Pineapple Express." He is now living in New York, pursuing advanced degrees in creative writing and filmmaking.

What's next: He'll play Allen Ginsberg in "Howl," about the famed Beat poet's obscenity trial.

Scott Smith: The longtime, much-younger lover of Milk met the future supervisor in New York and moved to San Francisco to live with him. Unfortunately, as the film shows, a rift developed between the two as Milk became more involved with politics. Jones says that the basic chronology of Smith's relationship with Milk is correct, although the film's rather fanciful suggestion that the two would have gotten back together if Milk had lived is not. Smith died of complications from AIDS in February 1995.

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/23/PKRT141R2J.DTL&hw=harvey+milk&sn=002&sc=781
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2008, 06:37:54 PM »
Harvey Milk's photographic memory
Edward Guthmann, Chronicle Staff Writer
Sunday, November 23, 2008

When Danny Nicoletta met Harvey Milk in 1974, he was 19 years old and "pretty clueless," he says. They met at Castro Camera, a funky, informal store that Milk operated with his partner, Scott Smith.

Milk was playful, animated. A flirt and a goofball. "I remember leaving there and remarking to myself how friendly those guys were," Nicoletta says. "Especially that one - Harvey."

A photographer and longtime chronicler of San Francisco's gay culture, Nicoletta joined the circle of friends that Milk tended like a mother hen. In 1978, when Milk was assassinated in City Hall by fellow San Francisco Supervisor Dan White - a year after he became the nation's first openly gay elected official - Nicoletta lost a beloved friend and "gay parent."

That tragedy took place exactly 30 years ago this week and is brought to life in "Milk," the new film by Gus Van Sant ("Good Will Hunting," "My Own Private Idaho") that opens Wednesday at the Castro Theatre and Friday at the Embarcadero and Sundance Kabuki. Milk is played by Sean Penn, White by Josh Brolin and Smith by James Franco.

Nicoletta talked about Milk, the man, and "Milk," the movie, at his home in the Sunset District, where one room houses a huge archive of photos crammed into bookshelves, file cabinets and banker's boxes. He's soft-spoken with a slight crack in his voice that sounds like he's recovering from a cold.

Slight of build and still boyish at 53, Nicoletta has for 30 years devoted himself to preserving Milk's legacy. He photographed each of the candlelight marches that commemorated the anniversary of Milk's death; co-chaired and juried the community effort to place a bronze sculpture of Milk in City Hall's Ceremonial Rotunda; and did research and production work on Michael Korie and Stewart Wallace's opera "Harvey Milk."

Today, Nicoletta says, he speaks "three or four times a week" to students, writers and filmmakers who seek his counsel for Milk-related projects.

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/23/DD0F149N2C.DTL&hw=harvey+milk&sn=003&sc=733
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2008, 06:42:14 PM »
Quotes from Harvey Milk and friends
Jesse Hamlin
Sunday, November 23, 2008

"Harvey spent most of his life looking for a stage. On Castro Street, he finally found it."

- Tom O'Horgan, theater director and a friend of Harvey Milk's

 "I like to sit in the window and watch the cute boys walk by."

- Harvey Milk, in 1973, on why he'd opened a camera shop on Castro Street

"It takes no compromising to give people their rights. It takes no money to respect the individual. It takes no survey to remove repressions."

Harvey Milk, in a 1973 speech during his first unsuccessful run for supervisor

"I have tasted freedom. I will not give up that which I have tasted. I have a lot more to drink. For that reason, the political numbers game will be played. I know the rules of their game now and how to play it."

- Harvey Milk, in his 1973 concession speech

"You've got to promise me one thing. You've got to help bring gays into the Teamsters Union. We buy a lot of beer that the union delivers. It's only fair that we get a share of the jobs."

- Harvey Milk to Allan Baird, Teamsters Union representative and director of the Coors Beer boycott in California, who asked Milk to support the strike against six major beer distributors

"Some people call me the unofficial mayor of Castro Street."

- Harvey Milk, from his 1973 campaign speech

"I know the guy's a fruit, but he shoots straight with us. Let's support him."

- Union boss George Evankovich, getting his labor buddies to support Harvey Milk for supervisor in 1975, as quoted in Randy Shilts' book "The Mayor of Castro Street"

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/23/PKBJ13VKO5.DTL&hw=harvey+milk&sn=004&sc=576
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2008, 06:44:22 PM »
Harvey Milk's friends on 'Milk'
Steven Winn
Sunday, November 23, 2008

Anne Kronenberg had seen "Milk" for the first time the night before, and she was still reeling.

"I don't think I slept at all," said Kronenberg, a San Francisco public health official in her 50s who worked as Harvey Milk's campaign manager in his successful 1977 Board of Supervisors run. She's portrayed by 22-year-old Alison Pill, her hair a swarm of tawny '70s curls, in the new Gus Van Sant film about Milk and the drive for gay rights.

"That was a period of my life that I just closed off, because the end was so painful," Kronenberg said, referring to the assassinations that ended Milk's and Mayor George Moscone's lives in 1978. "Seeing the movie, I was able to push past the pain and remember all the good times, all the fun we had. Who gets to relive a part of their life 30 years later? This has been a remarkable experience."

Kronenberg is one of various people caught up in such powerfully mixed emotions as "Milk" makes its way to movie screens across the country. Two others are Cleve Jones (played by Emile Hirsch) and Danny Nicoletta (Lucas Grabeel). Jones was a fresh-faced gay refugee from Phoenix when he met Milk; he went on to found the Names Project AIDS Memorial Quilt and has remained politically active. Nicoletta, who is now a photographer and activist for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues, worked in Milk's Castro Street camera store and on his campaigns. His photo archives of the period were an invaluable resource in the making of the movie.

The three real-world participants agreed that "Milk" summons its period faithfully, from the clothes and cars and handbills to what Jones called "the energy and spirit of being part of something that is brand-new."

"That was what was so exciting about that time," Jones said. "Everybody who was there felt it. You didn't have to be political. You didn't have to be educated. You didn't even have to be all that smart to understand that to be in San Francisco in the 1970s was to be a part of something that had not been seen before" - Jones paused for emphasis - "in human history. There was a kind of self-consciousness and self-awareness of that that I think really comes through in the film."

"That was the era when the personal really was political," Nicoletta said. "Harvey encouraged us all to find our own path, whether it was through political action, civil disobedience or theater. It was a highly creative environment."

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/23/PKER1437SN.DTL&hw=harvey+milk&sn=005&sc=518
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2008, 06:46:06 PM »
S.F. actress as Dianne Feinstein in 'Milk'
Ruthe Stein
Sunday, November 23, 2008

Ashlee Temple was packing for a move to Denver and her impending marriage when she received a call from her agent about an audition. Although Temple was easing herself away from acting, she couldn't say no to a chance to play Dianne Feinstein in "Milk," a biopic about the late San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk.

The scene Temple was asked to read was difficult. It was then-Supervisor Feinstein's shocking announcement that Mayor George Moscone and Milk had been shot and killed and that Supervisor Dan White was the suspect.

Repeatedly watching a film clip of Feinstein on that fateful day in 1978, Temple was struck by how she didn't cry.

"She was very controlled. But you can see she is very shocked and very fragile in that moment," Temple says. "It takes every bit of energy in her to get those words out. I think it cost a lot when she had to say the suspect was Dan White."

While Temple must have convinced director Gus Van Sant enough for her to land the role, unfortunately, as sometimes happens in Hollywood, audiences will not get to see her in that scene. Van Sant decided to go with archival footage of the famous news conference. Like Adrien Brody's in "The Thin Red Line," much of Temple's role was cut. At least it wasn't completely eliminated, as happened to Kevin Costner in "The Big Chill."

Temple was in San Francisco in March attempting to capture the essence of a woman who, as a powerful senator from California, has become a political icon. Temple is 43, just one year younger than Feinstein was at the time of the murders. Although their features are dissimilar, they have the same coloring - very light skin that contrasts with their dark brown hair - and a quasi-regal bearing that announces that they are somebody of note.

continues:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/11/23/PKDS13N45F.DTL&hw=harvey+milk&sn=006&sc=294

I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2008, 06:56:19 PM »
It's the right time to tell Harvey Milk's story, and Gus Van Sant is the right man to do it
By Rachel Abramowitz
November 23, 2008

Long before making "Milk," the film due Wednesday about the life and death of openly gay San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk, director Gus Van Sant imagined a scene in which the voluble, charismatic Milk was dressed as Ronald McDonald. In that version, Dan White, a fellow city supervisor who shot and killed Milk and San Francisco Mayor George Moscone in 1978, was deep in a "sugar-infused rage" and "envisioned himself as the Twinkie sheriff and he shot Mayor McCheese, and Harvey was Ronald McDonald."

Van Sant laughingly calls this his Charlie Kaufman take on Milk's story -- though, perhaps it's the sad nature of reality that White claimed during his trial that junk food had fueled his behavior -- the infamous "Twinkie defense."

"I offered it to both Sean Penn and Tom Cruise but I was really inept as a producer," says Van Sant, who says he then just sat and waited for them to call him back. And waited. And waited. And never followed up. "I completely dropped the ball from the very first and it sort of washed into a sea of however many offers they get every day."

That was in the mid-'90s. It's a decade later, the afternoon of the Los Angeles premiere of "Milk," the more straightforward telling of the story that Van Sant made. Dressed in baggy jeans and a blue top, the 56-year-old director is sitting on the deck of his modernist, unpretentious Los Feliz home, fielding phone calls about what he calls "the wedding," i.e. that night's gala. His parents are here and the more traditional-looking Gus Van Sant Sr. is reading by the swimming pool.

Few American directors have a body of work as varied and idiosyncratic as Van Sant's, which includes his early poignant looks at drug users and street kids ("Drugstore Cowboy" and "My Own Private Idaho"), a shot-by-shot remake of Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho," elliptical visions of Kurt Cobain's final days ("Last Days") and the Oscar-winning, feel-good drama "Good Will Hunting." In person, Van Sant seems gentle, with a nonjudgmental air, a distinct adherence to live-and-let-live. His features are rounded, his dark hair limp and his eyes seem to pop out like a cartoon character.

As a gay director with an empathy for the marginalized, it's probably not surprising that Van Sant has been offered -- and toyed with -- various incarnations of the Milk story, from an early effort spearheaded by Oliver Stone that Van Sant abandoned over script differences to the Ronald McDonald version he wrote himself, to the latest incarnation, the one he made with a script by Dustin Lance Black and starring Penn as Milk. Black's script hews closely to the politics of the story, eschewing for instance a more psychological take that would perhaps plumb the narrative of Milk's life from birth to grave, or a more sociological, party-like vision that would feature the raucous Castro scene complete with wild bath houses, which Van Sant notes might have been "pretty alarming . . . you know, thousands of men on the street picking each other up and having sex every night in sex clubs and drugs and all." Even the "Twinkie defense" and White's subsequent sentencing to seven years in prison are relegated to the end credits because, simply enough, Milk was dead by then.

Telling the story

While politics shape the narrative, "Milk" doesn't play like a standard heroic-man biopic, in part because of Milk's flamboyant demeanor, but also because of what seems to be Van Sant's true passion -- the band of outsiders and the bonds among those on the margins who choose to make their own families.

For those who've ever assembled in a living room to fight apartheid, nuclear weapons, for women's liberation, for civil rights or any social cause, Milk offers an acid flashback to what it's like to live on that grass-roots mojo, the intoxicating mixture of idealism, fraternity and implied otherness. The mouthy, charismatic Milk, played by an unusually vulnerable and accessible Penn, is fomenting the movement and riding the crest of group yearning. He tends to his flock, portrayed on screen by such winning actors as James Franco (as his longtime lover), Diego Luna, Emile Hirsch and Alison Pill, as his lesbian campaign manager.

continues:

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/movies/la-ca-gus23-2008nov23,0,5369488.story
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2008, 07:03:07 PM »
Screenwriter sees "Milk" as a story of hope
By Moira Macdonald
Seattle Times movie critic
Sunday, November 23, 2008 at 12:00 AM

"You have to give people hope."

— Harvey Milk, concluding a speech in 1978

Thirty years ago this week in San Francisco, city supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone were murdered at City Hall by former supervisor Dan White. Milk, a gregarious 47-year-old native of Long Island, was the country's first openly gay man elected to a major public office. His election in 1977 was cause for wild celebration; a year later, on the night of his murder, 30,000 people assembled for a silent, haunting candlelight vigil.

Those who've seen Rob Epstein's Oscar-winning 1984 documentary "The Times of Harvey Milk" know this story, with some of its moments seared into our memories: City supervisor Dianne Feinstein, her eyes dazed and moist, haltingly telling a sea of cameras that Milk and Moscone have been shot and killed; the procession of candles in the quiet dark, stretching endlessly to the horizon; the voice of Milk, raspy and passionate, telling audiences that they must embrace hope, not fear.

"Milk," the first feature film about Harvey Milk's story, opens Wednesday, directed by Gus Van Sant, written by Dustin Lance Black and starring Sean Penn. It took three decades for the movie to come to pass, despite the obvious dramatic power of the story — and it came from a young man who wasn't even born when Milk was killed, but who came to regard the politician as a hero.

Black began working on the screenplay "at least four years ago," he said on the phone last week. As a shy, closeted gay Mormon teenager from Texas whose family moved to San Francisco, he was fascinated one day to hear the story of Milk, an openly gay man who was celebrated by his community.

"For many years, it was a story that gave me that little bit of hope," he said. "I would hearken back to it; it kind of lived in the back of my mind. I'd think, there are some people who live to tell this dark secret, and they don't get shamed by their peers, they don't lose their families."

After years of keeping Milk's story close to his heart, Black finally began to work on the screenplay in earnest after a meeting with Cleve Jones, a longtime gay activist who had been a close friend and protégé of Milk. Writing on spec (in the early years of the project, no studio was paying him or had even indicated interest), Black found and interviewed as many of Milk's associates as he could, assembling a life for the screen.

continues:

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/movies/2008415999_milk23.html?syndication=rss
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2008, 07:11:23 PM »
Got Milk?
By KEVIN WILLIAMSON, SUN MEDIA
Toronto Sun
23rd November 2008, 6:21am

LOS ANGELES -- Relevancy is luck. Just ask Good Will Hunting director Gus Van Sant, who has wanted to make a biopic about slain gay rights activist Harvey Milk for more than a decade.

He's not alone. Some of Hollywood's most powerful actors and filmmakers have also circled the material through the years. At one point, Robin Williams was set to portray Milk, the first openly gay politician elected to U.S. public office in San Francisco in the 1970s; he was later shot to death by disgruntled city supervisor Dan White. And yet only now -- at a point in which Milk's politically charged era uncannily mirrors America's present day -- has the film been made.

Simply entitled Milk, it stars Sean Penn alongside a cast that includes James Franco, Emile Hirsch and Josh Brolin. It opens Wednesday in limited release then goes wide across Canada next month.

Book-ended by a tape recording Milk made in the event of his murder, the film charts his rise from unfocused businessman living in the Castro -- a haven to the city's gay population -- to a political titan.

 He ultimately clashed on the national stage with right-wing firebrand Anita Bryant, defeating an initiative that would have banned gays from teaching in California public schools.

Van Sant acknowledges when he started filming last year, he never imagined his film would parallel current events. Chief among them? Proposition 8, the ban on gay marriage California voted in earlier this month.

"A year ago, there was no (Barack) Obama, no Sarah Palin, no Proposition 8. All these things sort of came together. Prop 8 is an amazing coincidence. And Obama is so Harvey-like to me. Not only his themes, but also now that he's in office, or will be in office, when he talks about alternative energy and with a real interest and a keen interest that sort of surpasses even Clinton. You think, 'Wow, maybe the hip president is now in office.' "

continue:

http://www.torontosun.com/entertainment/movies/2008/11/23/7505271-sun.html
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2008, 07:13:16 PM »
'Milk' Screenwriter: Harvey Helped Me Come Out
Fresh Air from WHYY, November 20, 2008

Sean Penn stars in Gus Van Sant's new biopic Milk — the story of an out gay politician who inspired a community with his courage, and whose 1978 murder made headlines across the country.

Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black says he was among those for whom Harvey Milk made a real difference.

Born to Mormon parents, he grew up amid the military communities of San Antonio, Texas. He says Milk's story, when he finally learned about it, helped him summon the courage to come out to his family and friends.

"Texas kept me very quiet," Black told the Bay Area Reporter in February. "I became intensely shy, I had thoughts of suicide. I was a pretty dark kid, because I had an acute awareness of my sexuality, and was absolutely convinced that I was wrong."

But in the mid-1990s, Black told the BAR, he saw Rob Epstein's Oscar-winning documentary The Times of Harvey Milk.

continues:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=97245530&ft=1&f=1021
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2008, 07:15:22 PM »
Glee. Fury. Malaise. Oscar!
By Sarah Ball | NEWSWEEK
Published Nov 22, 2008

 Harvey Milk wouldn't be too proud of California voters right about now—but he might be glad to know that their doings have blessed his biopic with Oscar buzz aplenty.

Since the passage of California's Proposition 8, banning gay marriage, protesting crowds in the tens of thousands have flooded the streets—and the producers of "Milk" aren't shy about calling the film about the assassinated gay activist a celluloid rallying cry.

"At this moment in time, in 2008, [Harvey Milk's] kind of leadership is so, so needed," says producer Dan Jinks. "One person being able to mobilize so many and really make a difference—it's an essential story."

An informal NEWSWEEK poll of Oscar experts suggests that Hollywood's pre-awards mood is being shaped by three things: glee at an Obama White House, fury at the passage of Prop 8 and overall "recessionomic" malaise. How might all that affect statue distribution? The box-office smash "The Dark Knight" was regarded by some as a thinly veiled look at George W. Bush's despair-ridden America—and was touted all summer long as a best-picture contender. Now, in the wake of the election and Hollywood's predictably cheerful mood, it's a buzz kill—and rarely on anyone's shortlist.

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http://www.newsweek.com/id/170377
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

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Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #12 on: November 23, 2008, 07:18:08 PM »
Activists Seek to Tie ‘Milk’ to a Campaign for Gay Rights
By MICHAEL CIEPLY
Published: November 21, 2008

LOS ANGELES — When the movie “Milk” comes next month to Claremont, a college town about 30 miles from here, Patrick Milliner intends to greet it with a candlelight vigil protesting the newly passed state prohibition of gay marriage.

Before this month’s election, Mr. Milliner organized unsuccessful opposition to California’s same-sex marriage ban, Proposition 8. Now he expects the movie, about Harvey Milk, the murdered gay-rights crusader and San Francisco supervisor, to ignite his “Shame on 8” campaign.

“It fits perfectly with the plan,” Mr. Milliner said.

That may be good for the movement. Whether it is also good for the movie is less clear.

The convergence of “Milk,” which portrays gay-rights battles of 30 years ago, and a looming new culture war over homosexual marriage and other issues, has raised unusual expectations around Focus Features’ plan to release the film. It will be shown in a widening group of theaters, beginning with some in New York, Los Angeles and about a dozen other cities on Wednesday.

Proposition 8-related vigils have already occurred outside prerelease screenings in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Amy Balliett, a founder of jointheimpact.com, a clearing house for gay rights information, said on Friday that her site would urge its network of supporters to see the film on Dec. 5 at one of a list of “gay-friendly” theaters.

“Our goal is to make this movie one of the top three-grossing movies of the weekend,” Ms. Balliett said in an e-mail message.

continues:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/22/movies/22milk.html?em
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

Offline michaelflanagansf

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2008, 07:22:16 PM »
Here is the New York Times portal for Harvey Milk (articles related to him):

http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/m/harvey_milk/index.html?inline=nyt-per
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer

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Re: Milk - The Movie
« Reply #14 on: November 23, 2008, 07:25:00 PM »
"Milk" is more than a movie
"Milk" captures the emotional heft of a man and a movement just as California passes an anti-gay-marriage proposition.
By Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post Film Critic

On a temperate night in the City by the Bay last month, a community gathered to honor one of its fallen with the world premiere of "Milk." Gus Van Sant's film stars Sean Penn as Harvey Milk, the San Francisco city supervisor who, along with Mayor George Moscone, was shot and killed on Nov. 27, 1978.

In front of the Castro Theatre, the cast and civic VIPs stopped for interviews. There was Josh Brolin, who plays Dan White, the city supervisor who pulled the trigger. There was James Franco, who plays Milk's most significant other. Across the street, people waved "No on Prop. 8" placards toward folks who likely agreed wholeheartedly.

Three weeks later, the ballot measure banning gay marriage would pass and set off a round of angry protests. But this was a night of celebration.

"I'm proud of my city," Mayor Gavin Newsom said from the stage. "It doesn't just tolerate its diversity. It celebrates its diversity."

Next week, the movie about the nation's first openly gay male elected official will open in 18 markets, including Denver. In addition to Penn and Brolin, "Milk" also showcases Diego Luna as boyfriend Jack Lira and Alison Pill as Anne Kronenberg, who managed Milk's winning campaign in 1977. Emile Hirsch plays Cleve Jones, Milk's friend and an early gay- rights activist.

"Milk" is being hailed as a masterpiece. It is. Awards prognosticators forecast Penn's performance will earn the actor another Oscar nod. It will.

But something far more profound swirls around the film, written by Dustin Lance Black. The passage of Proposition 8 has given it a new sort of urgency.

"There are two kinds of films: those that matter and those that don't matter," said Luna. "It's such an amazing feeling. It might happen once or twice in your life. This is not a film anymore. We're talking about a real hero."

Not since Spike Lee's "Malcolm X" has a biographical film carried the weight of a moment and the well-wishes of so many.

Like Lee's opus, "Milk" also comes with a prickly back story. Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron ("Chicago") had toiled for years to bring Randy Shilts' biography, "The Mayor of Castro Street," to the screen. That Oliver Stone and Robin Williams were attached to it at one time now seems wrong.

This "Milk" is modest and epic at the same time. Penn captures an activist force who was fundamentally human.

continues:

http://www.denverpost.com/entertainment/ci_11035164?source=rss
I do my thing, & you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other - it is beautiful. If not it can't be helped.

Fritz Perls - A Gestalt Prayer