Sunday, 29 November 2009

Sunday Quiz: The Voice, Round 2

Due to the unflinching dedication of our contributor, Akima, we are able to bring you yet another Sunday quiz. This time we have got another video full of sound clips from....that's your guess. If you found the former quiz difficult, then this one will be even more of a challenge. But do not flinch. There is a visual clue, a picture, which comes with each segment. Good luck and have a wonderful Sunday.

Dublin's finally signing off...zzzz.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

More of Michelle in France

This weeks edition of the L'Hebdo Séries programme on Canal + is dedicated to Michelle. L'Hebdo Séries brings you current TV news, interviews etc. in the scope of just 7 French. Aside from featuring interviews with Michelle and Alexander Skarsgård on True Blood, the episode also announces the Global Frequency adaptation news. You can watch it online here.

Transcript of the Interview with Michelle:

Looking at her from the outside in, she could be seen as predatory, but, in playing her, standing in Maryann's heart and her body for so many months, I never felt that. It was always a loving gesture. It's just different. It's a different kind of love than what we're used to.

Like any good writer, he [Alan Ball] raises the questions, and he lets the audience answer for themselves. Luckily, in the meantime, we get to have a lot of fun.

Credit and many thanks go to Emilie who contributes to the programme and also our blog. :)

Monday, 23 November 2009

Salome in the Garden

Michelle Forbes: True Blood asks us about our beliefs

Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 'The Day Dream', 1880.

Michelle Forbes is a beautiful woman who resembles her characters. She punctuates her sentences with an attentive and patient smile, but it can not dissipate the intensity of her gaze. She smiles and speaks in a deep voice, husky and warm, which she modulates at will and without effort. She smiles and looks at you with her dark eyes, shining with a dusty glaze. We imagine her slipping easily into the skin of Salome and demand the head of John the Baptist from Herod Antipas. Because she carries an element of mystery that one may construe her as a femme fatale. The role of Maryann Forrester in Season 2 of True Blood fits her like a tunic a Greek god.

Before that, she was the wife of Paul Weston (Gabriel Byrne) in the first season of In Treatment. She was also an enigmatic and tortured mother in Season 2 of the excellent but little-known Canadian series Durham County. The time of three episodes, she was Admiral Helena Cain on Battlestar Galactica, but also among other things Dr. Julianna Cox in seasons 5 and 6 of Homicide: Life on the Street set for NBC by David Simon, the father of The Wire.

The actress was visiting Paris for the launch of Season 2 of True Blood which starts broadcasting on Tuesday, 1 December on Orange cinema series.

How important is the role of Maryann Forrester in your career?

My first important role on television was that of Julianna Cox in Homicide: Life on the Street, which is certainly one of the best crime series that has ever been filmed. In Treatment has also been a role I enjoyed playing. At the same time I turned to True Blood. Maryann is certainly the most flamboyant character I had ever embodied. But Helena Cain on Battlestar was so iconic that people remember me most for this character than the one I played in True Blood.

In hindsight, how do you see her?

It was only last week that I really realized what was the character of Maryann. It is a cliché to say that, but all the actors agree and that's true that you can not see a character that you embody as absolutely evil. When Maryann makes Eggs and Tara eat the soufflé, she really believes in giving them a gift. She is sincere in her whole approach. She is really convinced that it gives them freedom. And she really wants to get closer to the God. When she prepares the dish for them, she does so as a mother would do in preparing gifts for her children. For me, it was love.

Season 2 revolves around several different stories.

In this second season of True Blood, there are actually three distinct parts. The first season tells of a wretched little village, and we learn to know the people who live and work there. During the second season, three stories are pursued simultaneously. It is the journey that Bill takes to Dallas, there is the story of the Fellowship of the Sun, which for me was the funniest one to watch, and then there is the story of Maryann and the people of Bon Temps. What I like about this season is that it clearly addresses the question of our belief system. The purpose of Maryann is to challenge the moral beliefs and ideals of each of us. At the same time, the entire section on Fellowship of the Sun denounces the belief systems that require blind adherence from its followers. With regard to vampires, the question is about being judged, being regarded as different, and this questions our beliefs on the status of minorities. This forces us to ask us questions about our willingness to lead ourselves in a sheep-like manner, to follow a leader, one who can be very disruptive.

Music plays an important role in True Blood.

Yes. It is an essential element. What was amazing during the shooting was that we had one of the best sound engineers, Nathan Barr. In the series, the music is extremely important for Maryann but also for all of us. And the music was already included in the script when it was received. Each week we downloaded music from the episode that we will be filming next. This gave the impression that we had a sort of a soundtrack. And that immediately put us into the mood of the episode. I could not remember the B 52's, I had completely forgotten and when I downloaded the song, I said 'damn, it's really good'. "

To prepare for filming, I read about the maenads on Dionysus and Greek mythology, but what is interesting with Alan Ball and Charlaine Harris is that you can carry out all the searches you want, when you end up with the script in hand and you read that you'll need to dance to the B 52's, you try to understand how two things can agree with each other. And finally, you let yourself be guided by the text.

Working on HBO is a particular experience?

This may sound strange but I tend to work better when you're in a somewhat military environment. It is very difficult for an actor to find a series in which they believe. And when I discovered HBO, I almost felt too weak. They have a philosophy so strongly marked, they have such determination and at the same time such humanity. They really want to tell stories and they support their creators, they maintain their projects and they do not throw them out if they do not seem to work immediately. I am really impressed by their willingness to produce stories. This is not about money, it is like family to me. Perhaps I do embellish things a bit, but the more I worked with them the more I discovered on a personal level and I'm still admiring them.

What are you going to do now?

It has been almost two years since I have been shooting without interruption and I need to take some time for myself. I love gardening and I can not take care of my garden when I'm not in Montreal. I would also like to learn the joy of reading without having to memorize the text. I'll take the opportunity to cultivate my garden, in both senses of the word.
Source: Le Monde des Series (translated from French by me)

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Al Roach: Private Insectigator Revisited

Rome joins the Global Frequency on a rainy Sunday night. Luca felt inspired by the voice quiz and has sent us this informative Al Roach overview. Another fan of shorts. --chris

Al Roach: Private Insectigator (2004) takes place in the weeds behind the Hollywood sign where a colony of insects mirrors the golden era of Hollywood. Created by Obie Scott Wade, this CG film noir short won Best in Show and Audience and Critic's Pick at the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival and qualified for an Oscar® Nomination.

James Garner - Al Roach
Michelle Forbes - Dede Dragonfly
Kathy Kinney - Betty Earwiggins
Freddy Rodríguez - The Fly On The Wall
Gregg Berger - Professor Bugdonovich

Director: Obie Scott Wade
Writers: Jordan Beswick, Michael Maler
Original Music: Harold Barefoot Sanders III

USA 2004 - 6min Short Animation

"Al Roach" is a triumph of 'toon noir, a black-and-white tribute to every Philip Marlowe story you've ever watched or read. It even opens with the Warner Bros. logo, making me think for a while that it was decades older than it is. Verbal and visual puns abound at a pace that would give the Simpsons a run for their money, and the adult situations -- watch the antennae -- will tickle you without damaging the delicate sensibilities of any little ones who may also be watching."

"Jim Rockford goes buggy!
In this six-minute animated spoof/homage to film noir and old RKO detective B-flicks from the forties, James Garner provides the voice for AL ROACH, PRIVATE INSECTIGATOR.
Roach is the fedora-sporting roach gumshoe with a seedy office in Doowylloh (read it backwards), an entire town of insects in the dirt behind the Hollywood sign. And, like the real Tinsel Town, Doowlloh is a "colony dripping with gilt, seduction, and betrayal."
But down these streets a roach must go, and Al IS that roach. The trouble starts when a beautiful bug fatale named Dede with more curves than "Motholland Drive" struts into his seedy office, promising to do "anything" in exchange for his help in finding her missing scientist father, Dede's father, Professor Bugdonovich.
Originally produced as a pilot (for a potential series of shorts?) for Turner Classic Movies, the six-minute cartoon claims to be "one of the first - if not the first - black and white CGI animated film." So far, it's been well-received at The Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films, LA International Short Film Festival, Atlanta's DragonCon Film Festival and the Silver Lake Film Festival.

"I love the expressionistic, clean, stark use of contrast (in film noir) -- light and shadow. It's almost architectural." And this palette serves CGI perfectly. All the classics of film noir are stored in Wade's feverish brain. "I love Orson Welles' 'Touch of Evil.' "
What's the funniest thing about noir? "The hair," (Obie Scott Wade) laughs. "And the language is really very funny. We just don't talk that way anymore, but it has a quick back-and-forth, ratt-tatt-tatt banter that reminds me of the radio announcers of the period. It also manages to say a lot of very dirty things in double entendres."
If there's a sequel to "Al Roach," Wade says his roach fatale will ask Al to "Give me a chirp sometime. Ya knows how to chirp, dontcha? Ya just put yer legs together and rub!"

The director Obie Scott Wade about Michelle:
"I first spoke to Miss Forbes by telephone a few days prior to the record session. She has a very funny and warm personality and made me laugh right away. [...]
... each actor was only there for an hour and a half maximum. However, Michelle and I had such a good time talking, she stayed longer and we talked for hours. We talked about very meaningful topics such as global issues and her work in animal rescue. She's very active in the area of rescuing, rehabilitating and finding good homes for homeless dogs. Did you know that? Yes, she has a very big heart. [...]
Michelle required very little directing. Her instincts and inflection were perfect. She brought unparalleled sexiness and intelligence to the character. I could not have cast a more perfect actor. As far as casting, Michelle was my first choice and we were lucky enough to have her agree to be involved."

The dialogue


No. No!
Stay away!

So let me get this straight, Miss Dragonfly.
Your father's missing and you want me to find him.

Yes, Mr. Roach. Please, you must help me.
The buzz is that you're the best private dick in the business and I won't settle for less.

You see, my father is a brilliant scientist who's invented a cure for insectigen.

I see.

You have heard of insectigen, haven't you, Al?

Yeah. First you get a
Nasty rash.
Next thing

An hour later you're
Belly up.


Deadly stuff.

Will you handle my case?

Nothing would give me more pleasure.
But I'm afraid I might get in too deep.


Get out of my way.

What's buggin' her?

Daddy's missing.

Well with a thorax like that, she shouldn't have trouble finding a replacement.
Anyway, Wormer Brothers sent over those passes for the big premiere tonight.
They said we should get there early.


You promised, Al.
Besides, I already went and pulled my fancy dress out of moth balls.

That's some moth.

Where are you going?

Nature calls.

I hope it's collect. Rent's overdue.


Why didn't you take her case, Al?
We could really use the dough.

Drop it, Betty.

Uh oh, looks like somebody got bit by the lovebug.

That's all I need, another dame gettin' under my skin like a tick
Last queen bee who stole my heart ended up gettin' me in trouble with the mafia.

Betty. What stung me?

Insectigen. You got the rash.

Al, maybe you shouldn't -

Where are you going?
You need to rest.

If I don't find that dame's father,
that's all I'll be doing.

I turned the town upside down
looking for that dame and her dad.
At least I think I did.

The insectigen was starting to play tricks on my mind.
I was feeling weak.
The rash was spreading fast.

I started seeing stars.
Not just the ones on the sidewalk.
I needed help, I knew it.
There was only one place to turn.

Yeah yeah, I saw the whole thing.
The old man's in room nine at the Motel Ticks up in Silverfish Lake.

Thanks pal. You never cease to amaze me.

Heh heh heh, they don't call me the Fly On The Wall for nothing.
Now give me some sugar, handsome.

Please, don't kill me.
You can have the antidote.

What the -

Thank you, Mr. Roach.
I knew you'd make a beeline to the serum
once you were infected.

Please, keep her away from me.
She's been trying to kill me.

You and me both, pal.

Well guess what, I'm through trying.
Now say goodnight fellas.
The bed bugs are about to bite.

Not so fast, sister.


Name's Betty. Bitch is waiting for you in the state fly trap.
Cuff her, boys.

So it turns out the old man wasn't even her father?

They'd never even met.

Then why all the buggabaloo?

She was the owner of the big pharmaceutical outfit
that makes all the drugs used to treat insectigen.

I get it, once the old man's cure goes up for sale, her company's profits go down the tubes.


What a louse.

You don't use drugs, do you, Betty?

I've got the only drug I need, Al.
You and a good movie.

You're a good egg, Betty."

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Everything you wanted to know about Global Frequency Diplomacy news and some savoury snippets.

In preparation for this article, I had a read through the first couple of issues of Global Frequency, and I really enjoyed it. There's an immense amount of possibilities for a potential TV series. In the hands of the right people, it could become great TV, whether with Michelle's involvement or not.

Global Frequency originates as a 12-issue comic series from Wildstorm Productions, consisting of a series of single-issue, standalone stories. Written by Ellis, with covers by Brian Wood, each stand-alone story in the series featured artwork by a different artist. Whilst separate, each of the stories centered around The Global Frequency, an independent, covert intelligence organization headed by a former intelligence agent who uses the alias of Miranda Zero. There are reportedly 1,001 people on the Global Frequency, forming an active smart mob communicating by specially modified video mobile phones through a central dispatch system coordinated by a young woman code-named Aleph.

The purpose of the organization is to protect and rescue the world from the consequences of the various secret projects that the governments of the world have established, which are unknown to the public at large. The people on the Global Frequency are chosen and called on for their specialized skills in a variety of areas, from military personnel, intelligence agents, police detectives to scientific researchers, academics, athletes, former criminals and assassins. These threats that the organization deals with are equally varied and usually world-threatening, ranging from rogue military operations and paranormal phenomena to terrorist attacks and religious cults.

If this news is true, this would be the second attempt by The CW (formally The WB) network to adapt the Wildstorm comic into a TV series, with the first attempt being in 2005, when they produced a pilot episode that was based heavily on the first issue of the comic. However, they never aired this pilot, and did not commission the series.

The original series proposal was prepared by Mark Burnett with Michelle Forbes as Miranda Zero, Josh Hopkins as Sean Flynn, Jenni Baird as Dr. Katrina Finch and Aimee Garcia as Aleph. The characters of Sean Flynn, an ex-policeman who accidentally stumbled on a Global Frequency mission and Katrina Finch, a brilliant scientist with expertise in multiple fields, were created especially for the series.

Unlike the comic book, which had an ever-changing cast of field agents, Flynn and Finch were to be regulars along with Zero and Aleph, with other Frequency members coming in as and when necessary in supporting roles. This would allow for the character continuity expected of a television series and yet allow other characters to be killed off as in the comic book.

John Rogers was the principal creative force behind the television incarnation, writing the pilot episode, with Ellis credited as producer and creator. Other writers waiting to come on board included David Slack, Ben Edlund and Diego Gutierrez. The pilot was directed by Nelson McCormick.

The unaired pilot was leaked onto the Internet in June 2005 and continues to be downloaded and shared, primarily via BitTorrent and other P2P networks. Although it was popular and critically acclaimed, according to Ellis himself the leaking of the pilot annoyed Warner Brothers to the extent that they killed the project.

...of course since it's coming to the CW than expect young GQ model looking performers and cheesy love triangles.
I love those books. No way they can do them the same way on TV, given the gore and political overtones, but there's enough meat to the stories to make for a good show.
It was an excellent comic. But without going to a cable station so they can swear, cut off limbs and the like... I'm not seeing it. :/ that's sad because it of so many comics from that era/genre/authorbunch would have been excellent with the right people behind it.

I actually managed to somehow see said mystery pilot and freaking loved it. I thought Michelle Forbes was absolutely perfect as Miranda Zero and was hoping to see more. But it was never to be.

I’m cautiously optimistic. I despise the CW most greatly. It is all that is wrong with broadcast television. Suck suck sucking suck! I’m also worried that we won’t get to see Michelle Forbes reprise her role as Miranda Zero. I really think it’s time for her to get some steady work and Global Frequency would have been perfect. But we’ll see. I’m hoping Ellis gets some influence over the production. If it’s done right, Global Frequency will definitely fill the void left by Sara Conner Chronicles.
I like the idea that while the Frequency is Global, we as a show focus on the exploits of the members in a large metropolitan area and the cases that they in particular are called on. Various members get called elsewhere for missions on occasion, but for the show to succeed we'd need a recurring cast in the field.

Plus that sets up the eventual "Global Frequency: London" "Global Frequency: Miami" "Global Frequency: LA" spin-offs.
The problem is that, aside from holdovers Supernatural and Smallville, CW seems to be built around the teenage girl demographic.

Yeah, this was what I meant upthread when I said I wasn't sure if the CW was the best place for Global Frequency which is, let's be honest, not really your typical teen girl property. Really, the "special effects budget" issue isn't...only some of GF stories would really require a heavy effects expenditure to make happen. But then you have the fun of pitching stories which involve, say, rogue military cyborgs planning to murder-fuck everyone in the greater Los Angeles area, crazy Japanese scientists sculpting a cathedral out of human beings, and "two biofeedback-enhanced people beat the shit out of each other for thirty minutes until one makes the other eat his own arm" to the network that brought you Gossip Girl.

I remember reading something by Rogers where he commented that one reason his version didn't get picked up was because it was "too much of a downer ending". Not that you can't have downer endings for TV, especially nowadays, but when your *pilot* goes that route, it might not be as easy a sell.
I'll second the Michelle Forbes Needs To Be Miranda Zero sentiment.

Whenever I see her in other stuff (BSG, In Treatment) I always exclaim 'Yes! It's Miranda Zero!' She owns that role.
As for the downer ending...I can imagine why people wouldn't like it, but on the other hand, world rescue situations don't always end with people in jail and the rescuers on a mountain with enough vermouth to tank ten elephants. People die. Some are innocent, some are merely victims and just ended up being a part of something bad and not really knowing. But in the end the world/city/town is saved. At least until the next time it's in danger. And in all honesty I think that makes the story stronger.

Global Frequency? Yes please!

Not so much on the Michelle Forbes tho. She kicked ass on the leaked pilot, but True Blood has ruined her for me for a little while...

Diplomacy website has seen a revamp. A director's statement and the full list of cast & crew have been added. Moreover, a DVD will be available sometime next year.

The United States of America and the Islamic Republic of Iran face great hurdles in re-establishing democratic relations after thirty years of antagonism and mistrust. Recent elections in both countries have only confounded expectations. Language is how we bridge differences and build trust, but there is no telling whether a common language can be found. Interpreters play and essential role in bridging that divide.

I intended "Diplomacy" as a piece of diplomacy in itself, to strike up a certain conversation. The way these interpret diplomacy may be outrageous, it may be unwise, and it may have ulterior motives. But at least they're talking. - Jon Goldman.

And finally:

mkuplens: Thinking about recently-seen TV, Durham County is probably one of the best North American series I've seen in a while.
Absolutely brilliant.
200dollarshirt: Pizza, beer, opening two parter to BSG 2.5. Purrrr. Michelle Forbes is sexy as hell. Now sleep.
JBTakaTheStory: Just finished watching Durham County. Sucha bomb series dont yall think? Havnt seen it? Watch ion television
jillkill: Blown away by Can. TV series Durham County-suicide, multiple murders, abduction, rape, voyeurism, infidelity,
creepy children- 1st episode!

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Global Frequency To Be Adapted (Again)

"Warren Ellis' "Global Frequency" is making another run at the small screen, as The CW Network is allegedly trying to adapt the comic book series once again.
According to Production Weekly's Twitter feed, a second adaptation of "Global Frequency" is in the works courtesy of The CW and writer Scott Nimerfro. The news was further touched upon by Ellis himself, who wrote on his personal website that he hadn't "been cleared to comment yet" by the network.
"Shouldn't say any more until I get the nod from the studio," said Ellis. "But yes."
For some context, "Global Frequency" was previously attempted as a television series for The WB Network — the initial form of The CW — back in 2005. The project went as far as the pilot phase, with "True Blood" and "Battlestar Galactica" actress Michelle Forbes assuming the role of Miranda Zero, the leader of the Global Frequency, an organization of roughly 1,001 people with specialized skill sets that are used to resolve top secret crises. The pilot never made it to the network, despite support from fans that managed to watch a leaked version online.
After "Global Frequency" made our recent list of five Warren Ellis comics we want to see adapted, the CW will now give the series a second chance with Nimerfro working on the script — and Ellis said that he's already spoken with the writer about the project.
"I've spoken briefly to Scott Nimerfro — by which I mean I threatened to have him stabbed, and he thanked me and told me a funny story about how he's had worse threats — and he is Okay," Ellis described.
The writer also spoke towards John Rogers, the creative force behind the initial "Global Frequency" attempt. Rogers seemingly won't be involved in the new pilot due to his own TNT television series "Leverage," though he apparently "wishes [Ellis] luck."

* topbit: Global Frequency 2nd attempt: Hell yes. And with Michelle Forbes? Double hell-yes!!
* planetclark: Awesome! Call Michelle Forbes! RT @warrenellis: RT @prodweek: "The CW will again try to adapt Warren Ellis' comic book "Global Frequency"
*notlikecalvin: I declare myself Officially Uncaring about a new Global Frequency series unless Michelle Forbes is cast as Miranda Zero again. So there.
* mizzelle: @johannadc I hope they get Michelle Forbes back as Miranda Zero. She was perfect.
* warrenellis: @rfrancis I love Michelle, and would pay real money to just have her reading on TV for an hour a week.
* rfrancis: @warrenellis I know you couldn't possibly comment. But I'm just sayin, I want the one with Michelle Forbes. Or any one with Michelle Forbes.
* SpeedForceOrg: The real question is, can they still get Michelle Forbes to play Miranda Zero?
* catvincent: Previous via @warrenellis - Guess enough water has gone under the bridge. Can't imagine anyone but Michelle Forbes as Miranda Zero though
* chr0me: The *only* question is will Michelle Forbes be cast as Miranda Zero again? #globalfrequency

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Quiz No 5 - The Voice's the voice does that, it goes all knowing, to make me think I know, to make me think it's mine... - Samuel Beckett, The Unnamable

Dublin joins the Global Frequency on a sunny and cool Sunday morning. We're very happy to present you with another quiz. This one was compiled by our very special correspondent, Akima.

All you have to do is watch the video below and guess where each scene is from. It could be any work by Michelle for film, tv etc. Each segment is somehow disguised so you must pay great attention to the voices and the audio. However, Akima tells me to let you know that there are some hints, so be very vigilant. Watch out for...cherries. ;)

Have fun!

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Champagne and Delicacies

True Blood event in Paris
* The weekly French magazine Télérama (Le Monde) is said to feature Michelle Forbes in its edition of November 25.
* More about the Paris True Blood soirée last week:
"Arrive ensuite le moment de découvrir qui sont les acteurs de la série venus tout spécialement pour l'événement! Montent alors sur la scène dans l'ordre d'arrivée: Michelle Forbes, Rutina Wesley, Sam Trammel et Alexander Skarsgard. Les interprètes de l'énigmatique Maryann Forrester, la toujours directe Tara Thorton, le gérant beau gosse Sam Merlotte et l'anti-vampire Bill, vampire Eric Northman. Je dois dire qu'ils ont vraiment la classe ces acteurs américains, sauf peut-être Alexander Skargard qui ne fera pas oublié son pantalon orange par son nœud papillon... Ça va faire cliché mais les deux actrices sont encore plus belles en vrai!"

* "Après un résumé de la saison 1 en image, le premier épisode de la deuxième commence. A la fin des 50 minutes, je décide de m’éclipser avant le second pour me diriger vers le Hard Rock café où se tient la soirée privée « en présence des acteurs ».
Entrée sur listing et bracelet, et là, c’est le choc visuel. On en prend pleins les mirettes. Pourquoi?
Simplement parce qu’au rez-de-chaussée, ils ont reconstitué le décor du Merlotte’s. Les enseignes sont là, les têtes d’animaux, la disposition des tables, les hamburgers (oui, les même que ceux servis dans la série), et surtout, à mon plus grand bonheur, du Tru Blood. Bon, certes, c’était du soda à l’orange (excellent ceci-dit), mais le packaging est tout simplement fabuleux (imaginez, au bar « Bonsoir, deux Tru blood s’il vous plait »).
Le temps de manger un bout, le premier étage ouvre et la claque visuelle est encore plus grande. Fumigène, lumière et rideaux rouges et un panneau. Nous voilà à Fangtasia, le bar des vampires.
Bouteille de sang derrière le comptoir, poche de sang au plafond, seringue de soupe tomate et fiole de coulis de cerise, une ambiance très glauque tout en restant jovial.
« En présence des acteurs » donc. Oui et non. D’abord dans une partie VIP (forcément, on était une bonne centaine), ils ont eu la gentillesse de sortir assez souvent pour quelques photos et autographes. Ils ont simplement été adorables, très ouverts et disponibles."

* Rumour has it that there was a champagne party @ The Ritz in Paris :)

Durham County
* Durham County season 2 re-airs in Canada on 'Canal Mystère', first episode starts November 23.
* In Czechia they are already showing episode 4 of season two. - It looks like I'm missing more European air dates. Sorry for that.
* A multilingual English-German DVD of the first season of Durham County will be released in December.

The Chosen One
Michelle's short film The Chosen One has got a trailer on IMDb. Now .... here's the link:

Don't believe what they're trying to tell you about aging 'gracefully'. I missed the screening of Diplomacy in Leiden (that's a few minutes from where I live) two weeks ago. Of course, the lads from the Leiden Film Festival don't answer my email.

MF Community Inside
* We were having a talk at the 'Messiah Revisited' article planning more 'Revisited' postings. So far the plan is ... Randy: Razor. Chris: Wonderland. Nicole: Swimming with Sharks. Akima: Durham County - for the January US premiere. Akima was first, and you'll never see my non-written posting 'A Love Letter to a Murderess'. - Would you like to join us?
* I was thinking of a multilingual mirror of this blog ... the advantage would be that the contributors can write in their native language, and the translated text would get published here.
* There's hope that we get another quiz soon ;-)
* Embedded Vimeo videos don't play on the iPhone nor on Androids or any other mobile device. :(
* We've got a no-nonsense listing of Michelle's work. It's a compilation of the IMDb listing, all episodes included.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Sunday Picture

Portrait of Michelle Forbes, 2008.

"Having just finished watching the second series of True Blood, I feel the DS Cult page needs some space for people, starting with me, to praise, gush about, and generally extol the virtues of my personal choice for the title "Queen of Cult".
Source: Michelle Forbes appreciation

Posted on a cold and sunny November day in Amsterdam --chris

Added :: Randy found it. Are we to start a new articles series?

Friday, 6 November 2009

Michelle in Paris

Michelle Forbes, Sam Trammell and Alexander Skarsgard last night at the Max Linder Cinema in Paris. True Blood Season 2 premieres in France in December.

Welcome in Paris, Michelle. - She's back in Europe, woohooooo :)

More photos at:

"Orange Cinéma Séries avait fait les choses en grand pour annoncer la nouvelle, lors d'une soirée au Hard Rock Café redécoré en bars de Vampires. Plusieurs comédiens de la série avaient été invités pour l'occasion: Sam Trammell, Michelle Forbes, Rutina Wesley et Alexander Skarsgard.
La saison 2 de True Blood démarrera dès le mardi 1er décembre à 21h30 sur Orange Cinéma Séries. Chaque mardi, un nouvel épisode sera diffusé, ce qui devrait laisse la série à l'antenne jusqu'en février."

(Click to enlarge)

"La soirée :
Pour cette soirée nous avions rendez-vous au cinéma " Max Linder Panorama " à 20 h pour assister à la projection des deux premiers épisodes de la deuxième saison de la série . -Cette soirée fut organisé par orange cinema series. - Avant cette soirée je ne connaissait pas cette série et ne la suivait donc pas. - Mais au vu des deux épisodes elle a l'air intérréssante et plûtot pas mal. Etant devant le Max Linder je découvre que l'entrée du ciné a été décoré pour l'occasion avec 2 gros projecteurs et un tapis rouge et un vigil plutot balèse ( bon ok le vigil n'etais pas là que pour la déco ni pour donner un coté "star "a la soirée ).
A l'entrée les noms et prénoms des personnes sont demander (ainsi que l'invitation ) et un sac nous est remis (il contenais des friandises, chips , etc...) ce qui permettais de grignoter un peu pendant la séance. - Un bracelet est également remis car après la projection la soirée continuais dans un bar ( le Hard Rock Café ) et ce bracelet etais le sésame pour y entrer.
La soirée commence avec l'arrivée des 2 acteurs et 2 actrices de la série et qui nous parle de leurs rôle et de cette série. Après le visionnage direction le Hard rock café qui se situe un peu plus loin et la quel surprise , le café a été entierement privatisé pour la soirée. Un peu d'attente a l'entrée et ceci due au monde qu'il y avait . Une fois entrée nous avons eu droit a un open bar plus nouriture a volonté. Hamburgers , Nuggets épicées , petites cuisses de poulets , etc... etais au rendez vous. Tout comme le champagne ,coca et True Blood (la boisson des vampires dans la série ) a volonté.
Et tout ceci sur de la musique ...rock bien évidement vue le lieu.
Apparement les acteurs et actrices etaient présent durant la soirée , perso je ne les ai pas vue."

We're all multilingual ... so, you get the first impressions of the evening in French. - Click on 'comments' for a translation. --chris

Update ::: ... and here's the video of the Soirée in Paris:

Soirée Promotion TRUE BLOOD saison 2 @ Paris from flexgraph on Vimeo.

More pictures :: (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Messiah Revisited

In 2001 and 2002, BBC Northern Ireland released the first two installments of a drama miniseries, entitled "Messiah - The First Killings" and "Messiah - Vengeance Is Mine". Alongside Michelle Forbes (Susan Metcalfe), Ken Stott (DCI Red Metcalfe), Neil Dudgeon (DI Duncan Warren) and Frances Grey (DS Kate Beauchamp) lead the ensemble of talents in this brilliantly produced TV crime drama. The third episode, "Messiah - The Promise", was aired in 2004.
Unfortunately, Michelle Forbes does not appear in the fourth chapter of the series, "Messiah - The Harrowing".

For in-depth information, interviews and behind-the-scenes videos visit the BBC Northern Ireland website:

»» Messiah II

»» Messiah III

Viewers of BBC crime dramas know that what they see is what they get. No fast paced action sequences followed by visual murder scenes. Instead, with the "Messiah" miniseries, we get a haunting drama in the style of box office hits such as "Silence of the Lambs" and "Se7en".
The story begins with a rather dreary scene of a car driving through London in the pouring rain. The initial sense of uneasiness sets the mood for the rest of the series which may not be entirely for the weak hearted. We watch DCI Red Metcalfe struggle with a case of mysterious and grisly killings. And as the body count rises, Metcalfe must face a ruthless killer who always seems to be a step ahead. Soon enough, Red's work begins to threaten the safety of those around him, especially his loving wife Susan. Seemingly disadvantaged, in her deaf condition, Susan may prove to be the pillar of strength for her husband, as she tries to keep him out of the darkness that the gruesome killings are continually driving him into. Not only that, but Red is also desperate to reunite with his estranged brother which will bring back old memories that he thought to have been able to forget.
Will Red overcome the many obstacles and catch the murderer?

The experience of shooting "Messiah" proved to be very different from what Michelle Forbes was used to in the USA:

"American Actress Michelle Forbes looks on her time working on MESSIAH 2 - VENGEANCE IS MINE as a welcome change from life in the States - where she says there is so much violence. [...] "Back in the States, we concentrate so much on violence and with some of the parts I've played; I'm always knee deep in dead bodies - another day at work!"

Michelle on learning British sign language:

"It makes you realise just how much you rely on the voice and how much you rely on hearing another person's voice in order to get you somewhere. [...] Communicating without speaking - for two people who are hearing - means that you have to go to a completely different place. But to be able to walk into the deaf world is such an opportunity and I feel grateful for it every day and completely honoured. [...] On MESSIAH I, I have had five days to learn sign language and I didn't know that British sign language is completely different from American sign language, so it was an intensive five days."

The acting is superb and the storyline will take your breath away while keeping you in your seats until the very last minute. It is rare in today's TV landscape to find a mini-series which puts its emphasis on the relationship of its characters and not on lavish violence.
Most importantly, as I am probably the laziest person on this planet, I admire and worship the tenacity of Michelle Forbes for learning British sign language in under a week's time and acting with her 'hands and feet' only. Watch out for those kitchen scenes in parts I and II between Stoot and Forbes. Who needs dialogue?

And as one viewer commented:
"To sum up, this was an electrifying piece of ground-breaking drama, every moment communicating mesmerising details about this complex plot and it's highly believable characters."

To see Michelle at her sign-language acting brilliance, watch scenes from 'Messiah - Vengeance is mine':

Messiah 1-4 is available on DVD sets at (Region 2, PAL version). Regularly re-airs on many European TV channels, free-to-air and ad-free.

Article written and submitted by Nicole. Thank you :)

We're looking forward to publish more articles about Michelle's work. Please contact us at
We'd love to hear from you! --chris

"One of the BBC's prestige shows, Messiah perfectly balances the quiet character moments it needs with scenes of pure Grand Guignol horror and jet black humour [..] Stott as DCI Metcalfe is a unique hero for this kind of story, a man who is calm, rational, well balanced and happily married. He's relentlessly intelligent and punishes himself constantly for not quite being clever enough. The way in which he and his wife (a superb performance by Michelle Forbes) deal with this is contrasted to great effect with the break up of Reid's relationship with his wife and Beauchamp's budding romance with a colleague."

" 'Messiah', which is based on a novel by Boris Starling, is an exemplar of efficiency, a demonstration of just how much story can be put across using layered sound, scrupulous close-ups, broad atmospherics, visual shorthand, a few flashbacks and simple dialogue [...] most striking here are the performances: the pale British faces of all the lead actors, who, with their baggy undereyes untouched by surgery or Botox, look plainly sad and afraid. Those faces tell a story, swiftly."

"Ein Thriller, der nicht einfach die inzwischen gängige Serienkiller-Routine abspult, sondern seine Handlung mit intelligent konstruierten Nebenhandlungen und lebendig gezeichneten Figuren so gut unterfüttert, dass sich die Geschichte neben dem reinen Krimiplot noch weitergehenden Fragen zuwenden kann: Schuld und Sühne, Verdrängung, Reue und der oft qualvollen Konfrontation mit sich selbst. Nicht umsonst wurde "Messias" in Kommentaren häufig mit David Finchers Genre-Highlight "Seven" verglichen."

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Diplomacy Screenings - Festival Circuit

The short film Diplomacy is making a circuit around Europe's film festivals. Screenings have been announced for Derry, Northern Ireland and Bilbao, Spain.

* Nov 20 - 28, 2009: The 22nd Foyle Film Festival celebrates ‘Art & The Cinema’ – embracing cinema as an art form in itself but also as the magical vehicle that can give the audience an exciting and inspiring glimpse into other artistic worlds.
Diplomacy is scheduled for Saturday, 21st November, 4:00pm (The Nerve Centre Cinema 2, Derry)

* Nov 23 - 28, 2009: The 51st Bilbao International Festival of Documentary and Short Films will be held in Bilbao from November 23th until November 28th 2009.

Diplomacy, USA 2009, 9min Short
Relations between the United States and Iran take an unexpected turn when two senior diplomats and their interpreters meet for a closed-door session.
Written and directed by Jon Goldman
Cast: Michelle Forbes, Navid Neghaban, Omid Abtahi, Nazanin Boniadi

In July Diplomacy won the 'Prix du Public' at the Paris Cinéma International Film Festival.