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August 23 2014

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11 posts tagged "HBO"

The Rise of Beefcake Yoga, Idris Elba on Rapping, and More of the News You Missed Today

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idris-elba-harticle-sizedToday’s strange fitness trend…
Beefcake yoga is a real thing…seriously. All we’ll say is that it involves rock music and former World Wrestling Entertainment stars, and Lululemon is not recommended. Click to read the full story. [New York]

Idris Elba, star of Mandela film, on dropping beats…
We know him best for his role as Nelson Mandela, but actor Idris Elba also has a career as a DJ and, more unofficially, a rapper. In his new interview with Details, he reports that he and some of the cast members from HBO’s The Wire used to book studio time to record their rap sessions. [Details]

Summer’s most popular shoe…
Birkenstocks, duh. In case there was any question about that, a Birkenstock PR manager told NYT today, “It’s been an incredible summer, and for sure New York is leading the way.” But are we prepared to wear socks with our Birks when temps start to drop? [The New York Times]

State of men’s fashion in Iraq…
Not up on the fashion scene in Iraq? Neither are we. Luckily, Bullett magazine shared an enlightening dispatch today from Baghdad. What we learned: A man’s shoes and hair are the most important part of a man’s look. [Bullett]

In oddball news…
Snaks 5th Avenchew is in the doghouse with Saks Fifth Avenue. The puppy snack company reportedly received a cease-and-desist letter from the department store, asking that it change its name by Wednesday (yesterday). The owner of the high-end, hypoallergenic dog food company claims she will not change the name and that she meant it to be a compliment. [Reuters]

Photo: Mark Seliger / Details

EXCLUSIVE: AmfAR to Honor Calvin Klein Collection, HBO, and H.R.H. Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway

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Italo Zucchelli, Francisco CostaWhen it comes to spring soirees, the amfAR fete is one of the hottest tickets in town. For its fifth annual Inspiration Gala celebrating men’s style, the world’s top menswear designers will create custom-made looks for a print-focused runway show at The Plaza’s Palm Court. The evening, which is scheduled for June 10, will also serve to honor a few standup groups and individuals: H.R.H. Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, HBO, and Calvin Klein Collection. Michael Lombardo will accept the award on behalf of HBO (Sarah Jessica Parker, a longtime amfAR supporter, will present the award to him), while Francisco Costa and Italo Zucchelli will accept on behalf of Calvin Klein Collection. The benefit, presented by MAC Viva Glam, will also include a rare performance by New Order, as well as a live auction of luxury goods. Since its inception in 2010, the Inspiration event series has raised $15 million for amfAR. Event chairs include Thom Browne, Thakoon Panichgul, James Franco, Simon Doonan, and Jennifer Lopez.

Photo: Neil Rasmus/BFANYC.com 

Regarding Susan Sontag: A New Doc on Her Force of Personality and Brainpower

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Regarding Susan Sontag is a new documentary playing at the Tribeca Film Festival this weekend and will air on HBO this fall. The film is an intimate look at the influential American writer, filmmaker, political activist, and cultural critic. Sontag is widely considered to be one of the most important, outspoken, and provocative thinkers of the 20th century. Her writings include novels, short stories, and film scripts, but she was best known for her critical essays that examined all kinds of social and artistic issues. Sadly, Sontag died of leukemia in 2004 at 71 years old, but her work still resonates today. Style.com spoke to the film’s director, Nancy Kates, about Sontag’s creative process and wide-ranging influence, and what inspired her to make the film.

What made you decide to make this film about Susan? I imagine that you have followed her work for a long time.

I was saddened by Sontag’s death in late 2004, which was also the year my father passed away. Sontag was a heroic figure to me in my youth. Like many smart young women in the 1980s, when I was 20 or so, I wanted to grow up to be like her—confidant, fearless, supersmart, and not willing to play second fiddle to men. I was always interested in what she had to say—I had the idea to make the film [when I was] at my office, and when I went home, I counted the Sontag books on my shelf. I had seven of the sixteen books she published in her lifetime, which seemed like a good sign, particularly because I read her purely out of interest and not because her work was assigned to me in a classroom setting. In some ways, this film is a look back from middle age at the person I was thirty years ago.

Susan’s writing was incredibly powerful, articulate, and candid. She also had a wide range of interests. What do you think her greatest passion was?

Critic Wayne Koestenbaum, who is interviewed in the film and served as one of our advisers, refers to Sontag as a “cosmophage”—someone who eats the world or consumes the world. It is probably not fair to single out one of her passions—she had passions for words; ideas; books; photographs and the realm of photography; her lovers, most of whom were women; and for more ordinary pleasures, such as Chinese food. Her work was a deep expression of most of those passions, though she hid her sexuality, which, ironically, probably limited her ability to write fiction. Interviewed about her historical novel The Volcano Lover, in 1992, Sontag told a journalist, “I’m interested in various kinds of passionate engagement. All my work says be serious, be passionate, wake up.”

Which one of your interview subjects offered the most insight into Susan’s creative process?

I think it is unsporting to play favorites among the interviewees, but Don Levine, who spent a long time as a sort of unpaid editor and writing collaborator, was extremely helpful in describing the long stretches of work they did together on Death Kit and Antonin Artaud: Selected Writings, which they edited together, though Sontag is the sole editor on the cover of the book. So many of our interviewees are also writers; they are speaking about Sontag through their own experiences writing on other subjects.

How do you think Susan was able to be both an influential critic and a sort of celebrity?

Sontag was unique in American letters, in that she had a mind that would not quit, and was also very beautiful, which was part of her appeal and partly why she became so famous, though I think she also sought fame in a way that had been unfashionable among the previous generation, i.e., the writers of the 1950s and early sixties. Like many people who become famous, she craved that sort of public attention, and needed it, in certain ways. I don’t know that she would have had the celebrity without the looks, even though it pains me to say so. She was also willing to be a bit outrageous in her public statements, such as the one she made during the Vietnam War: “The white race is the cancer of human history.” Through sheer force of personality—and considerable brainpower—Sontag made sure that she was not going to be dismissed or condescended to because of her gender, managing to avoid the sort of treatment that most women in the public eye experienced in the 1960s and seventies, and sometimes even today.

Watch the Thrones: Kit Harington to become the New Face of Jimmy Choo Man

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Kit Harington

Here’s a juicy tidbit of news that should help tide over Game of Thrones fans eagerly awaiting the season four premiere on April 6. This morning, Jimmy Choo announced that Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow in the award-winning HBO fantasy series, will star in the accessory label’s forthcoming Fall ’14 men’s campaign. In addition to modeling the latest range of shoes and bags, the ruggedly handsome 27-year-old actor will also serve as the face of Jimmy Choo Man, the label’s debut men’s fragrance launching in September. While previews of the ads have yet to be released, we wouldn’t be disappointed if they looked something like the image above superimposed with luxe leather goods. The brand’s creative director, Sandra Choi, told Style.com, “Kit has an innate confidence, an effortless presence and attitude. He has an overtly masculine style and a rebellious sense of humor as well as being a very talented actor. He is the perfect Jimmy Choo Man.”

Photo: HBO 

Betty Halbreich Doesn’t Watch Girls, Embraces Panty Girdles

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Lena Dunham and Betty Halbreich

Lena Dunham—the outspoken Girls creator with a singular and oft outré aesthetic—has a fashion-forward new project in the works: an HBO comedy based on the life of 85-year-old Bergdorf Goodman personal shopper Betty Halbreich. During the New Yorker festival, The Telegraph was privy to a convo between the two ladies, in which Halbreich, who’s worked with Bergdorf since 1978, admits that she’s never watched Girls and that she was wearing a “panty girdle.” The style maven also commented on Dunham’s Emmys look: “That blue eye shadow…made your eyes tear,” she said, to which Dunham lightheartedly replied, “I know. The Emmys weren’t my finest hour.” Who knows—perhaps Dunham could get more than just TV material from the seasoned sartorial adviser.

Photo: Bryan Bedder / Getty Images