Noticeboard: September 2016

Gremlins2
There’s nightmare cinema patrons, then there’s these guys…

As you’ve no doubt heard several times already by now, The Pop Culture Studio’s IT systems fell afoul of some pretty serious gremlins this August.

This meant that most of last month was spent trying to get the mischievous little bastards under control, the downside of which being that there were virtually no new posts for weeks in a row.

Fortunately, The Studio’s gremlin problem is now completely under control, and – as you’ll have noticed – new posts are already streaming in and should continue to do so for the rest of September (and beyond).

I guess what I’m really trying to say is that, at long last, The Studio is back – and better than ever!

Noticeboard: September 2016

Soapbox: Suicide Squad – How not every movie is for you and why critics aren’t the bad guys

SuicideSquad_Joker
This is pretty much what defensive fans looked like when the reviews rolled in…

We recently crossed the halfway mark for September, which means that for many people, Suicide Squad is well and truly old news.

However, thanks to the IT issues that brought The Pop Culture Studio shuddering to halt for most of last month, I still haven’t had my say on that movie and the furore that surrounded it – and believe me, I have PLENTY to share.

Continue reading “Soapbox: Suicide Squad – How not every movie is for you and why critics aren’t the bad guys”

Soapbox: Suicide Squad – How not every movie is for you and why critics aren’t the bad guys

Soapbox: Worlds of pure imagination – the five best Roald Dahl film adaptations

TheBFG
That’s right: the guy with the big ears is regarded as one of the UK’s finest actors

Today marks the 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s birth, a man who was undoubtedly one of the greatest children’s authors of the 20th Century.

Dahl’s legacy can be seen today not only in the consistently strong sales his stories continue to enjoy, but also in the number of films that have used those stories for source material.

It’s fair to say Dahl had a rather dim view of many of the movies based on his works, many of which brightened up the darker undertones of his works or otherwise meddled with his tales of virtuous heroes and despicable villains.

The latest, Steven Spielberg’s take The BFG, scores points for its faithfulness to the source material, stunning visuals and top notch performances – particularly Ruby Barnhill as Sophie and Mark Rylance as the Big Friendly Giant himself – but somehow, it ends up feeling like less than the sum of its parts.

Still, that’s not to say that Dahl’s novels can’t be translated to screen successfully, and here are five of the best, most whizzpopping and downright scrumdidilyumptious adaptations of the author’s works.

Continue reading “Soapbox: Worlds of pure imagination – the five best Roald Dahl film adaptations”

Soapbox: Worlds of pure imagination – the five best Roald Dahl film adaptations

Easel Update: September 2016

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Sadly, my red and blue construction lines don’t make this a 3D image…

You might have noticed a lack of new posts from The Pop Culture Studio over the past few weeks – as those of you who follow The Studio on Facebook or Twitter will already know, this is thanks to some rather pesky gremlins causing havoc with the IT systems.

Fortunately, whilst said gremlins are only just now being rounded up and the damage from their rampage repaired, in the interim, I’ve at least been able to make good on my promise to hit the drawing board and have spent the last month or so sketching away the hours normally spent posting on the site (or working on pitches and the like).

And so it it’s with a real sense of pleasure that I post this latest Easel Update, which – save for a few sketches up front – represents a rare look me kicking it old school with traditional pen and ink drawings (in the absence of my beloved digital tablet!).

Continue reading “Easel Update: September 2016”

Easel Update: September 2016

Noticeboard: August 2016

There’s magic in the air around The Pop Culture Studio this month. That’s because the Studio’s Review of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – the review I’ve sat on since seeing the play in previews several weeks ago – has now gone live for your reading pleasure.

Looking farther afield, the release of Suicide Squad last week brings with it my latest Soapbox rant (which might surprise people) and I’ve been beavering away at the drawing board the last few months, so an Easel Update might finally materialise as well.

All this – plus the usual other features – makes this August as a good a time as ever to follow The Pop Culture Studio!

Noticeboard: August 2016

Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

CursedChild_Poster
SPOILERS: Those expecting to see a scene with a child inside a giant snitch will leave sorely disappointed

“Keep the secrets.”

That was the key takeaway imparted by Harry Potter creator JK Rowling to those of us lucky enough to attend the preview sessions of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the new stage play that continues the story of everyone’s favourite boy wizard.

With that in mind, I’ve held off on posting an in-depth review of Cursed Child until after the official release of the play’s script this week, in order to give fans the chance to experience the story – and its many surprises – for themselves first.

But now I think it’s well and truly safe to deliver a verdict, and I’m happy to say that (overlooking a few quibbles) Cursed Child is, well, pure magic.

Continue reading “Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”

Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Five Minutes With…Guy Hendrix Dyas (Part 2)

GuyHendrixDyas_Agora
A huge amount of work goes into Guy’s production design work – from initial concepts through to the actual filming process and beyond

Welcome to Part 2 of this month’s Five Minutes With… Q&A, featuring production designer Guy Hendrix Dyas (you can check out Part 1 here).

In this second instalment, Guy discusses his work with Steven Spielberg on Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, provides insight into the mind-bending world he helped create for Christopher Nolan’s Inception, discusses his recent work on Danny Boyle’s Steve Jobs, and much, much more!

Continue reading “Five Minutes With…Guy Hendrix Dyas (Part 2)”

Five Minutes With…Guy Hendrix Dyas (Part 2)