Is China Taking Over Hollywood?

(AP Photo) RELATED The story of how Pele conquered the footballing world aged just 17 is coming to Hollywood with filming under way in Rio de Janeiro, Seine Pictures said on Thursday. The film, entitled simply, “Pele”, “tells the wonderful story of the rise to glory of the legendary player,” said the US company, which is producing the work with Imagine Entertainment. Pele, 72, born Edson Arantes do Nascimento and nicknamed O Rei (the king), is widely considered the greatest player of all time having helped Brazil to their first World Cup title in 1958 and then having triumphed again with an all-star ensemble in 1970. Brazilian singer “Seu Jorge” (Jorge Mario da Silva), Mexican actor Diego Boneta and Irish screen idol Colm Meaney are in the cast for a film written and directed by brothers Michael and Jeff Zimbalist. Brazilians Kevin de Paula and Leonardo Lima Carvalho play the young Pele, respectively between the ages of 13 and 17 and aged 10. Meaney will play George Raynor, who coached Sweden in the 1958 final when Pele announced his arrival as a global star. Seine is negotiating rights with Sports Licensing International, which represents Pele. Filming began in Rio last Monday, the producers said. Born on October 23, 1940 to a poor provincial family, Pele was also on the squad which won the 1962 World Cup — though he missed much of that tournament through injury — and scored more than 1,000 goals in his career. He spent the twilight of his playing days helping to popularise soccer in the United States with New York Cosmos. FIFA proclaimed him player of the century in 2000 and a year beforehand the International Olympic Committee voted him athlete of the century.

Chelsea Players as Hollywood Movie Characters

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Even so, the seemingly capricious decisions of the Chinese government have made some Hollywood insiders wonder whether cooperating with China is worth it. (Or, as the Reporter put it, ” The China Clusterfk: Is Hollywood Fed Up? “) After all, RZA’s martial arts movie The Man With The Iron Fists gave China script approval and even casting approval (producers did not cast a Chinese actor who was out of favor with the government), in return for being allowed to film in China, and even after all that, China still wouldn’t import the movie for its theaters. In the case of Django, Tarantino had agreed to some mild edits to tone down the violence, but on the day the film was to open in China even as projectors had started running the government suddenly banned the film. No reason was given, but after Tarantino cut out the film’s male nudity, snipped a violent flashback sequence and toned down the ending, the film finally played for Chinese audiences. It didn’t do very well, perhaps because it was playing on fewer screens than it had been booked to play before and was now programmed opposite Iron Man 3 and The Croods . Or perhaps because, during the month-long delay, Chinese viewers who were interested in the film managed to see it in pirated versions. See What RZA Had to Say About Directing The Man With the Iron Fists There’s also the issue of whether Hollywood’s willingness to let China dictate content plays into the propaganda goals of a regime that’s often accused of human rights violations. It’s one thing to cut offensive racial stereotypes, but what about movies that show a one-sided picture of China (lots of skyscrapers, no political prisoners or sweatshops) or go out of their way not to present Chinese characters in an unflattering light? Hollywood may be full of people who wear ribbons to support the Dalai Lama, but no studio is going to make another Seven Years in Tibet or Kundun any time soon, lest they be frozen out of the market the way the studios behind those films were in the late 1990s. Still, Hollywood keeps coming up with new ways to get on China’s good side. The fourth Transformers, which is being produced by not one but two Chinese companies, will include a number of roles for Chinese performers, who are being selected via a reality show airing in China, on which four of the judges are Hollywood insiders. And you can expect Hollywood’s creative types to continue to stretch to find ways to flatter China on screen.

Conservatives Use Cory Booker’s Connection to ‘Hollywood Liberals’ Against Him

John Terry / Ron Burgundy Ron Burgundy image courtesy of Theq.fm Clive Mason/Getty Images When at work on the pitch and doing his thing, John Terry is a leader of menChelsea’s captain supreme. He is a player respected for his qualities and is a fine professional. Off the pitch, his image is a little less positive, however, with a reputation for being a Lothario, amongst others. Give him a tache, well-groomed hair and a freshly pressed suit from the 1970s, and he would be none other than Ron Burgundycapable of plenty social faux pas, not to mention appearing particularly narcissistic. David Luiz / Dr. Emmett Brown Back to the Future image courtesy of Sodahead.com Ian Walton/Getty Images Their hair may be vaguely similar, but the resemblance between Chelsea’s David Luiz and Dr. Emmett Brownor simply Doc as he is better known to Marty McFly in Back to the Futureis uncanny. Both are borderline genius at their chosen craft, with Doc creating a time machine from a DeLorean car, while Luiz has an abundance of footballing talent that has seen him make 29 appearances for Brazil. Yet, for all their talents, the pair have a tendency to cause plenty of drama and have a habit of getting themselves into the odd sticky situation. Whether it be attempting a succession of Cruyff turns on the edge of his own penalty area or conceding reckless fouls, Luiz has landed himself in hot water more times throughout his career than he cares to mention. And as for Doc, well, need we remind you of Back to the Future III? Frank Lampard / Rocky Balboa Rocky image courtesy of Wikipedia It’s hard to imagine that Frank Lampard was once a player considered by many as not being talented enough to make the grade at the highest level. At his boyhood club West Ham United , this was particularly the case, with fans questioning his ability. In fact, at one famous Q&A session with supporters, Harry Redknapp was forced to support his young nephew’s talents when one fan targeted him for criticism, suggesting Lampard was only featuring for the Hammers for reasons of nepotism.

Senate seat that was held by Frank Lautenberguntil he died in June. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has set a special election for Oct. 16, and Booker has become the latest cause celebre among rich Hollywood politicos. In April, for example, a party at producer Jerry Weintraubs Beverly Hills mansion raised $500,000. Co-hosts included Disney CEO Bob Iger, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, Sony CEO Michael Lyntonand Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara. STORY: Cory Booker’s Secret Twitter Messages With Stripper Revealed And a few weeks ago, billionaire businessman Ron Burkle, partial owner of the NHLs Pittsburgh Penguins, co-hosted a Booker fundraiser along with Michael Eisner, J.J. Abrams, Jennifer Garner, Weintraub, Damon and Affleck. Lloyd Marcus, chairman of the Conservative Campaign Committee, said the email invoking Bookers ties to Hollywood was particularly effective, generating thousands of small donations, as opposed to the donations of up to $10,000 apiece that Booker raises at celebrity events. “Our supporters were motivated to offer a counter-force to Hollywood,” Marcus said.

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