Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Hello From Toronto!

Enjoy loranc's report from the FanExpo in Toronto! --chris

Hello from Toronto!

Earlier this month, Chris asked if I would be interested in doing an interview with the creators of Durham County at Fan Expo 2010. Well, how could I say no? The interview was originally with writer Laurie Finstad Knizhnik, but because the show was such a collaborative effort, director Adrienne Mitchell and producer Janis Lundman themselves suggested to be part of it as well, to create a more complete piece.

With a list of 16 questions, sent to me by Chris, and a shiny new voice recorder in hand, I set off early Saturday morning for the Metro Convention Centre downtown. When I arrived, I found line ups several blocks long and general confusion everywhere, which pretty much set the scene for the rest of the day. Infact, it was only 15 minutes before the interview that I got confirmation on where and when to set up. And it wasn't until we were actually setting up in the hotel hallway (where our interview was to now take place, instead of the mysterious room 204 that none of us could find) that I was told Laurie could not attend and I only had 10 minutes with Adrienne and Janis. So, I turned to my little entourage of Forbes fans I met along the way that day (Deb from the Miranda Zero blog, a woman from the Propworx forum, and another woman who had travelled all the way from Germany) to assist me in quickly scrapping 11 questions and choosing the best 5 that applied to Adrienne and Janis only.

The result is what you hear on this audio file, lol. That rustling of papers sound was me flipping back and forth between sheets of questions while balancing myself as I knelt on the floor. It appeared the con ran out of chairs. The laughing and clapping in the background was from my little entourage, who were also on the floor, but were very supportive and clearly enjoyed the opportunity to sit-in on the interview.

Despite the initial fluster, it was a great experience and I was inspired by what these two trailblazing women had to say. Many thanks to Chris and the Durham County crew for making all this happen!

Update :: You can find a transcription of the interview here:
--> This Moment Of Tenderness

Note by chris: Sorry, no interview picture of Janis & Adrienne, instead: Michelle Forbes signing autographs for fans at the Anchor Bay booth, taken by loranc:

Monday, 30 August 2010


Anyone interested in continuing, administrating a Michelle Forbes Community Blog?
I.e.: writing articles, creating videos, maintaining a picture gallery, coding the design and much more ...

Let me know: mcnlive@gmail.com


P.S.: Durham County fans, I've got a surprise for you:

Friday, 27 August 2010

This Weekend, it's Fan Expo Toronto

It’s Fan Expo time in Canada!

Apparently, Michelle Forbes was busy this Friday morning with interviews.

Michelle on Breakfast Television Toronto ...

Source: bttoronto.ca

... and on CBC Radio Q live in studio. You can listen to the podcast tomorrow. Update:: The podcast is already online.

Don't miss the much anticipated Durham County panel and the autograph session tomorrow at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre! More info on our sidebar, and on the official Durham County Facebook page.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Wonderland Revisited Part II

Wonderland, the eight part television series about a fictional psychiatric Hospital in New York City evoked a strong response when the first two episodes aired in 2000, and ABC decided to took it off the air.

Many of the reviews and debates are hard to find on the Internet or apparently lost. Thanks to archive.org it was possible to recover substantial parts of the discussion. This second part of 'Wonderland Revisited' will solely focus on these documents, without any further commentary, pictures or videos.

TV Guide April 8, 2000 issue
Next Stop, Wonderland by David Handelman

Forget the emergency room - welcome to the psychiatric ward. The extreme hospital drama has arrived
It's just another morning on the hospital ward. Doctors Robert Banger (Ted Levine) and Neil Harrison (Martin Donovan) are leading an entourage of medical students on their daily rounds from bed to bed, waking up the patients and assessing their status. Today, there's a patient who says he's "depressed." Banger asks him why. "Something happened," the man says evasively. Turns out he poured gasoline on his mother and set her on fire.

Friday, 20 August 2010

A Nightmare In Suburbia - Durham County Reviews

While I'm looking forward to the third season, in a thrill of anticipation, the Durham County DVD reviews of the second season keep coming in.

Anh Khoi from Montreal writes:

"Despite being the most violent and darkest crime TV series you're very likely to see, Durham County finds a magic way to put substance over grittiness. Besides, the show contains the best performance I've ever seen in crime dramas [...]
Like the first season, the second season of Durham County is magic. The writing is still first-rate. Above all, some will find that the second season's pilot has way less difficulty to set the tone because the "villain" doesn't have a dichotomous personality. Besides, in the second season, the TV series goes way further when it comes to dealing with violence. In fact, while the first season dealt with violence expressed in an extroverted way, the second one talks about people who commit it by manipulating other people [...]
...despite its very heavy topic, Durham County's charms lie in its way it depicts its gallery of disturbed characters [...]
expect to see a performance full of depth from the actors, especially from Michelle Forbes."

Full review here at anhkhoi.blogspot

Gary writes:

"[Forbes] played the role of Verity with such humanity and intensity that you totally understood her actions, even while finding yourself repulsed by them.
You see her doing reprehensible things, and yet much like Ray Prager in Season 1, you can almost see the method to the madness. And with Verity there was a definite sense of madness about her, a result of trauma in her past.
At one moment you find yourself empathizing with what she's gone through and what she's currently going through, and then you see her poisoning some chocolates to harm someone close to Mike and your feelings change, and you see that this same person you're sympathizing with earlier you can see her in her full on evil mode, and then you can STILL feel for her later in scenes where she's falling apart. It takes a special kind of actress to pull that off, and not just make a one dimensional villain."

Full review at searchingforchetbaker.com

The Europeans, and here especially the German TV viewers, are a little late. Season 2 has yet to debut on 8 September (RTL Crime). All the more enthusiastic are the reviews of the S1 DVD set which just has been released in Germany.

dvdrome.com writes (translated by me):

"Durham County is a powerful piece of television, a drama, a thriller, a gloomy reflection of the Western middle class and its moral decline [...]
Durham County is the nightmare of a middle class suburbia. Thousands of nice small houses, surrounded by huge hydro towers which transport the convenience of civilisation to the County. The middle class lives here. Or are they just surviving? You can live here? Or do they merely close their eyes to reality? To the mortgages - for decades at the mercy of the banks? To years without prospects for the adolescents who, though living wealthy, yet don't see a bright future, a youth that generates odd little games whereby sex decays to a commodity and a murder in the neighborhood isn't daunting - but eventually a bit of excitement and variety? [...]
The first 4 episodes directed by Holly Dale are probably the best crime TV ever produced. The director remains an observer and leaves a judgement to the viewer. [...]
(On sound editing) A perfect sound is not a question of booms, it's the orchestration, the mixing, the sound effects ... in this series they are outstanding."

German source at dvdrome.com

Update:: Give away of Durham County DVDs

* "To celebrate the end of summer, the The Cultural Post organizes its first give away of DVDs for fans of Canadian films and TV shows. [...]1rst Prize:
Durham County is a very dark crime drama that takes place in a fictitious suburb of Toronto. There's a killer in the suburb of Durham County and Det. Mike Sweeney (Hugh Dillon) tries to find him/her. Besides, Mike also deal with his inner demons. Note that Michelle Forbes delivers a legendary performance as a manipulator."
Source: anhkhoi.blogspot
"Since both prizes are zone 1 DVDs, the contest is only opened to Canadians and Americans." (quote)
Dear Anh Khoi, all Europeans are perfectly able to watch NTSC and region 1 DVDs. Just saying :)
24 August: Anh Khoi opened the contest to more regions: "... if you don't live in North America but can read zone 1 DVDs, then feel free to participate."

* DVD S1 review in the August issue of the German magazine 'Cinema': (translated by me)
A surreal suburban nightmare and a gloomy character study, with a Making-of well done [...] Suspense on its highest level.

(Original text: 'Surrealer Vorstadtalbtraum und bittere Charakterstudie mit einem gelungenen Making-of [...] Spannung auf höchstem Niveau')

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Sunday Pleasure

* Fan ExPo Toronto Update - Durham County Cast and Creators:
- 28 August 12:30, ROOM 104A Panel with Michelle Forbes, Greyston Holt, Adrienne Mitchell, Janis Lundman, Laurie Finstad-Knizhnik (Deluxe Pass required, acc. to the FanExpo site)
- 14:00: Cast and creators of DC S2 will be at the Anchor Bay Booth (#525) to meet fans and sign autographs (must provide proof of panel attendance to guarantee autograph)

We might have a surprise for the blog visitors. The DC gang rocks! I'll keep you posted.

* News from Ekström
He'll be visiting Edinburgh in September. WITHOUT ME. Arrrghh.

I wish you a wonderful Sunday!

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

AMC Greenlights The Killing

Great news! It's official, AMC is going to produce the US adaptation of Forbrydelsen:

* 13 one-hour episodes
* Production on the series begins this fall
* The series is slated to premiere in 2011
* The Killing is a working title

Mireille Enos as Sarah Linden and Joel Kinnaman as Stephen Holder:

(Click to enlarge)

Sarah: yes! The sweater: check! Jan Meyer (sorry, Stephen Holder): awww!

From the AMC press release:
"New York, NY – August 11, 2010 - AMC announced today a full series order for the pilot that was formerly known as The Killing, from writer and executive producer Veena Sud (Cold Case). Sud has signed on to also serve as the showrunner for the series, which is currently untitled. Set in Seattle, the series is based on the wildly successful Danish television series “Forbrydelsen” and tells the story of the murder of a young girl and the subsequent police investigation. Produced by Fox Television Studios, it is executive produced by Mikkel Bondesen (Burn Notice) for Fuse Entertainment. Fuse’s Kristen Campo co-produces. AMC first announced the pilot order in January 2010 with Patty Jenkins (Monster) directing the pilot. Production on the series begins this fall in Vancouver and season one consists of 13, one-hour episodes. The series is slated to premiere in 2011 on AMC. [...]
“We are thrilled to be moving forward with this stunning piece of television. It is a crime drama, but it is also a gripping character based story that pulls you in and doesn't let go. The storytelling is completely compelling, and the show is visually breathtaking. Veena, Patty, Fuse, FTVS and the cast did a phenomenal job of bringing it to life.” said Joel Stillerman, AMC’s senior vice president of original programming, production and digital content.

"Ever since Mikkel Bondesen brought us this remarkable Danish mini-series, we were determined to bring it to American television,” said David Madden, Executive Vice President, Fox Television Studios. "We are so proud to be working with AMC and our extraordinary cast on this very special series."

As “Sarah,” Mireille Enos (Big Love) portrays the lead homicide detective that investigates the death of Rosie Larsen. Other previously announced castings include: Billy Campbell (Once and Again, Enough) as Darren Richmond, Seattle’s City Council President, running for Mayor; Michelle Forbes (True Blood) as Mitch Larsen, the victim’s mother; Joel Kinnaman (Snabba Cash) as Stephen Holder, an ex-narc cop who joins the homicide division in the investigation to find Rosie Larsen’s killer; and Brent Sexton (W., In the Valley of Elah) as Stan Larsen, the victim’s father."
Source: AMC News

"...for my money, the best news about this announcement is that it also stars Michelle Forbes, one of the best actresses working today."
--> Maureen Ryan, The Watcher

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

AMC Close to Picking Up The Killing to Series

This just in from deadline.com:
"EXCLUSIVE: I hear that AMC is close to picking up drama pilot The Killing to series, which would extend the network's perfect pilot-to-series ratio.

Based on the successful Danish series Forbrydelsen, The Killing tells the story of the murder of a young girl and the subsequent police investigation through the perspective of the detectives, the grieving family, and the suspects. It centers on Sarah (Mireille Enos), the lead homicide detective that investigates the murder. Billy Campbell, Michelle Forbes, Brent Sexton, Kristin Lehman, Eric Ladin, Jamie Anne Allman, and Joel Kinnaman co-starred in the pilot directed by Patty Jenkins and written by Veena Sud."

WOOOt :)

... I just lost a bet to Ekström. Now, I have to pay for his Kung Fu training program, he's preparing to fight alongside Circe to combat Wonder Woman.


stamos: One of the best pilots I've ever seen. Seriously.
@KateAurthur It is. Super duper amazing.
KateAurthur: I've heard this is amazing.
clairethebelle: Yay! LOVED this script, love Mireille Enos!

Added (5 August) ::

Brendan Sexton III will be playing Belko Royce, Larsen's employee.
Katie Findlay will be playing Rosie Larsen, the victim.

* Forbrydelsen II: The DVD box set went on sale today in The Netherlands. Special offer of 'De Volkskrant' :)
"Een nieuw seizoen van de bloedstollende Deense thriller The Killing is nu op dvd te koop bij de Volkskrant! Sarah Lund onderzoekt een reeks moorden en bijt zich vast in een race tegen de klok."

* At arte.tv (French or German) you can find great videos, behind-the-scenes, character descriptions, interviews, wallpapers and more - of the original Forbrydelsen. Don't go there if you don't want to get spoiled.

First comments@deadline.com:

* Michelle Forbes? I’m there. (Though she would be great as the lead in Prime Suspect, too.)
* I was wondering what was going on with The Killing. I know nothing of the original show, but if it was successful in Denmark, maybe it’ll be successful here, too. Hopefully AMC sticks to its tagline: story matters. I trust AMC at this point.
* It’ll work – in fact, with Vena twisting this tale – the deeper family voyeur perspectives that can be infused over a season, will be like crack – especially with the character dynamics that this cast is capable of. If AMC sticks with this, and the season is strong – you can’t tell me that the speculation for the season 2 plot line will be anything less than monumental. Viewers in the bank, all of whom will be sticking around even if they hate themselves in the morning. I’m in.
* AMC produces great shows – ‘Mad Men’ & ‘Breaking Bad’ are two prime examples. I anticipate they will only set the bar higher with ‘The Killing.’
‘Forbrydelsen’ has proven that following the single crime storyline is successful. I don’t think the plot is dependent upon solving the murder, but more so on the effects it has on the family and the people in the community. It’s a new crime every season, so I don’t think it will be hard to keep the audience intrigued. In fact, I think it’s more impersonal when a series has a different crime per episode. I think this format is what will make “The Killing” a stand out drama this season. - Can’t wait!

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Quiz No 7: Gadgets

Due to the busy Canal-Parade-Weekend in Amsterdam I'm presenting the Sunday Quiz on a Friday. Gadgets.
"En gadget er en teknologisk mindre objekt eller dims (apparater - f.eks. et værktøj, udstyr eller en hvidevare), som har en bestemt funktion. Gadget er især geniale apparatpåfund, som kan være brugbare eller måske overflødige ting. Mange gadgets har et smart design og/eller usædvanlig(e) funktion(er). Gadgets er en de ting, som anvendes af mennesker, der gerne vil være "trendy"."
That was Danish :p

It's easy. Do not flinch. Just guess where each picture is from. Comments are open. Have fun!

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Summer In The City

So, I have been experimenting with a poll widget for this site.

Looks good. But POLLS, really?

Ekström says hi to everybody, and wants you to know that he still hates me. Because I refuse to buy an iPad. He has to wait until the first usable Android-based and affordable tablet hits the market. Ekström can't type :(

On a related note, a recap of our talks about the future of this blog.
* Derek (location unknown) enjoys it as it is now.
* Luca (hi, Rome) doesn't care much, but is looking forward to Linux & gadget articles
* Rebecca (NL), Nicole (UK) and iHelix (NL) prefer to keep this site about Michelle and to open the blog to occasional off-topic posts
* Randy (Dublin) is dreaming of being an actor and has a vision of a Global Frequency Network
* Akima (Budapest) suggests a second blog "Aleph and the green bubble"
* Deb (Buffalo) is enjoying the summer and wouldn't mind a second blog
* Chris (Amsterdam) loves Durham County and adds bubbles to the css codebase

I wonder if we qualify as 'a bunch of nutters' as well ...

Have a great weekend. Enjoy yourself!