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Matt Damon News Column
Cannes premiere
  • Behind the Candelabra premiered at Cannes on Tuesday. The strong audience response is summarised in this reaction from Steven Soderbergh at Showbiz 411. Photos are at Getty, Yahoo, here and PopSugar. Reviews and reactions to the film are in the comments section of the previous post. Video of Matt and Lucy arriving on the red carpet is available at CanalPlus. Videos of all events on Tuesday, including Alexia photographing Lucy and Matt's publicist Jennifer Allen on the red carpet, is at the official site (about 10.50 in the red carpet video).

    Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh is not retiring from filmmaking. He had said he would a while back. But really he’s going into TV. Soderbergh has done so well for HBO with “Behind the Candelabra” that I am told there is an announcement forthcoming about a new TV series.

    Soderbergh will likely get a deal similar to Aaron Sorkin and Martin Scorsese, who make “The Newsroom” and “Boardwalk Empire” for HBO. That will keep Soderbergh busy until he wants to return to feature films.

    Before I knew all this, I ran into him after the “Candelabra” premiere. I asked about the retirement. He said, “When Matt Damon saw the [huge] reaction tonight, he said to me, You’re done, aren’t you? And really, I thought yes, because that’s the best you can do.”

  • Video interviews with Matt are at Extra and at ABC for GMA. An interview with Michael and Matt by Donna Freydkin is at USA Today, including:

    Damon, 42, and Douglas, 68, knew each other in passing, but weren't close at that point. "I produced a picture in 1996, The Rainmaker, and you were so good. We knew each other off and on," says Douglas.

    Which means, clarifies Damon, that Douglas was responsible for one of his breakout films, since without his approval, Damon would not have been cast in the big-ticket production. Later on, both collaborated on and off with Soderbergh. "We were both in Steven's stable of actors. I'd hear stories of Michael. Steven's stories are always about how someone works," says Damon.

    "From my end, looking at Matt, he's probably the best listener of an actor I know, and listening is a lost art form. There was the right balance. He wasn't a hustler. He was a good-looking young guy with a sweetness about him. All the elements were right," says Douglas.

  • An interesting interview is at WA Today:

    For Damon, the interest lay in the dynamic between the aging Liberace and Thorson, who had lived all his life with foster parents. "How insane that relationship and how beautiful it was. I thought the screenplay got all the complexity of a long-term relationship where there is a power imbalance, and where there is all this ... you know. I could see failed relationships I'd had echoed in that and I had been both people in different relationships in the course of my life. Without the rhinestones, but still."

    After this, is there anything Damon wouldn't do for a movie? He supposes there must be, but he can't think of anything he wouldn't do for the right script and right director.

    "I wouldn't want to do anything that conflicted with my beliefs about the world,'' he says. ''But f---ing Michael Douglas? That certainly wasn't the threshold."

  • From an interview with Steven Soderbergh at Deadline.

    DEADLINE: The point he made about Matt is valid, though. What does it say about Matt that he’s willing to do this after Jason Bourne, at an age when Michael did Fatal Attraction and Basic Instinct and had a brand to protect?

    SODERBERGH: It makes you understand the difference between a movie star and an actor. A movie star has something to protect and an actor doesn’t. Matt has walked this really fascinating line, taking creative chances and at the same time finding a way to be in movies that are hugely successful. I think he likes both. I think he loved making those Bourne movies.

  • Bono, Richard Branson and Olivia Wilde have joined Matt's 'toilet strike' for Water.org.

  • Photos of Matt and family at lunch in Cannes on Tuesday are at PopSugar.
  • 14 comments or Leave a comment
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 22nd, 2013 09:04 am (UTC) (Link)

    Behind the Candelabra

    I was able to see a screener copy of Behind the Candelabra today. Michael's role is more striking because he's in character from the first shot, whereas Matt plays a pretty but dumb blank slate and it takes quite a while to form a substantive character. Matt has some very strong scenes at the end of the film, but mostly plays naive to content to surly to angry in some state of undress. The costumes, staging and music are fantastic, and there will be a lot of great gifs and quotes. I think it will be very re-watchable.

    At least one scene didn't make it in - extras reported that Matt required a lot of takes to try and fit Liberace's white cape into the car, but it didn't make the final cut.

    A random tweet today in tribute to the very funny mankini/butt shots in the film:

    Katelyn ‏@DeeLiteFool
    Also, Matt Damon put his hand on his wife's butt the entire time he was talking to a reporter. Gigglefest. #cannes2013

    Edited at 2013-05-22 09:05 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 22nd, 2013 08:02 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Behind the Candelabra

    I'm glad you've had the opportunity to see it early. I was leery of the whole set-up from the beginning because it was obvious that Matt would inevitably play second fiddle to Douglas, because he has the more extravagant over-the-top part. And I was worried about the stigma of TV. I'm still not convinced I was wrong. But it does seem to be a terrific movie and I'm going to try hook and crook to see it (I don't have HBO).

    And little does that reporter know that Matt always has his hand there when he's on the red carpet! lol.

    And, this is OT, but I'm glad to see that Refn/Goslings movie has gotten poor reviews. I can't for the life of me understand the attraction of Drive. It should have been titled "Drivel"!
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 23rd, 2013 02:54 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Behind the Candelabra

    I still don't think BTC would have done sufficiently well in cinemas to recoup its budget/marketing. HBO have done a fantastic job selling the film.

    OT, also pleased with the Refn movie reviews, but they are very mixed (I hated Drive). Looks like Michael Douglas has a new competitor for Best Actor at Cannes in Robert Redford.

    For any readers in Sydney, Behind the Candelabra has just been added to the Sydney Film Festival.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 22nd, 2013 12:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Family lunch

    Little Stella in the fedora is just the cutest thing ever...
    Alexia looks great with the shorter hair, and Gia is super cute with the sunglasses (I can't see Isabella)
    Matt & Lucy have beautiful daughters, that's for sure.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 22nd, 2013 12:44 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    The end of the red carpet video is super sweet as Matt is clearly waving, blowing kisses and taking photos of Lucy, Nora and Alexia in the crowd.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 22nd, 2013 02:22 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    I love this pic.


    Matt's goofing off and I didn't realize that was alexia and Nora at first. Colin, Matt's assistant, is also in the pic that alexia is taking.

    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 22nd, 2013 02:27 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    The link doesn't work for me but I think it's the photo showing the back of Lucy's dress and Jennifer Allen. I didn't recognise Alexia and Nora in the pic before.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 22nd, 2013 03:08 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    Yes that is the one.
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 22nd, 2013 07:49 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    It's lovely to see a close picture of Alexia smiling. Everybody looks great.

    I loved the end of that video too. Awww... he loves his girls :-)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 23rd, 2013 03:04 am (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Family lunch

    Newscom has added even more pics. There are now a couple of pics of alexia and Nora with matt and Lucy.
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 22nd, 2013 02:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

    First award nominations

    Matt and Michael are both nominated for Best Actor in the Critics' Choice Television Awards. Candelabra also nominated for best movie or mini-series.


    Benedict Cumberbatch ("Parade's End") – HBO
    Matt Damon ("Behind the Candelabra") – HBO
    Michael Douglas ("Behind the Candelabra") – HBO
    Toby Jones ("The Girl") – HBO
    Al Pacino ("Phil Spector") – HBO
    Dominic West ("The Hour") – BBC America

    The Critics' Choice Television Awards will be held June 10 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, with "Parks and Recreation" star Retta hosting. The ceremony will also be webcast live on UStream.

    Lainey loved the movie and watched it twice back to back.

    Edited at 2013-05-22 02:33 pm (UTC)
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 23rd, 2013 02:50 am (UTC) (Link)

    Monuments Men

    It looks like Monuments Men has now finished filming in Germany and the crew is off to London for three weeks.

    Edited at 2013-05-23 02:51 am (UTC)
    From: (Anonymous) Date: May 23rd, 2013 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Monuments Men

    Do you think Matt will now be going to London after Cannes? They sure are getting alot of travel lately I guess before their big cross country move to LA.

    Also, any word on the Miami home sale?
    mattdamoncolumn From: mattdamoncolumn Date: May 24th, 2013 01:55 pm (UTC) (Link)

    Re: Monuments Men

    They now look to be back in NY. No word on the sale of the Miami home, although Alex Rodriguez's home nearby just sold.
    14 comments or Leave a comment