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No phoenix force driving Ryder

Sep 12th, 2012

Winona Ryder has been working steadily for years, following a hiatus in the wake of her sensationalized shoplifting conviction dating back to an incident in 2001 at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills. Yet many people, including media who don’t do their homework, seem to think that every new movie is a miraculous “comeback” from total obscurity.

So there was Ryder again defending herself and her career at Monday’s Toronto filmfest press conference for her latest film, the drama The Iceman. Ryder plays Deborah Kuklinski, the wife of true-life mob contract killer Richard Kuklinski, who is portrayed by Michael Shannon. The same film just screened at the Venice filmfest and Ryder said she got the same question there.

“I’ve been asked that question a bit in Venice and I don’t know if I’m developing a little bit of a complex, because I don’t know if you’re saying: ‘We missed you!’ or you’re saying: ‘What are you doing here? You’re not welcome!’ ”

Ryder, now 40 and living happily in San Francisco, said she is enjoying her age, her life and her career as an actress who works only when the role calls to her. Like it did in Ariel Vromen’s The Iceman.

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TIFF: “The Iceman” Press Conference Pictures

Sep 11th, 2012

The first batch of pictures has been added, mostly of them thanks to my friend Rachel. Also some pictures of a portrait the cast did after the press meeting was also added. Enjoy!

“The Iceman” TIFF Press Conference

Sep 10th, 2012

It’s happening LIVE now, at this url. Will post the full video as soon as possible!

Ryder: It’s always challenging if you’re playing someone that existed because you can’t just create someone out of your imagination and you often feel a sense of responsibility. My experiences in the past have been that I’ve had the [blessing of the person I’ve played] or it was more of a love letter, so I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve… I’ve never really done a crime movie genre before… I’ve never played a person before where it’s ambiguous of what she did or didn’t know and perhaps was in denial.

It’s been a long time since we’ve seen you in this movies. Do you feel welcome back in Hollywood?

A: I don’t know. I’ve been asked that question a bit in Venice, and I don’t know if I’m developing a bit of a complex because I don’t know if you’re saying “We missed you” or “What are you doing here, you’re not really relevant.” For me, I started very young, and when you receive a lot of blessings and success when I did, I was sort of constantly couldn’t believe I was doing this back in my 20s, and I went through a time where I realized how important it was to have a life outside of it. At the end of the day you come home, and [you’re] waiting to wrap something, and you’re trying to find… it’s a cycle.

It’s equally important for me to be a friend to my friends, sister and daughter, be a good person and have a life I can feel good about it. I feel like I need to take some time to do that. Also, actors are very blessed, but when you go through your adolescence doing it, there is a lot of pressure, and you go through this weird age.”

“I’m psyched to be 40, and I’m psyched to get older, because I think you become more of yourself. It’s not the size of the roles, it’s usually the roles that’re more interesting.”

I don’t know – if I was younger and was just starting out now [with the information on the Internet] I don’t think I’d become an actress.


Sep 8th, 2012
Nigel Goodall

We are pleased to announce that Nigel Goodall’s biography of Winona will soon be available as a Print On Demand (POD) paperback. The POD will have existing eBook front cover artwork, with a new back cover that will be a graduated matching colour to the front cover with descriptive text. The interior text of the book will, of course, be the same as the eBook version. It is to be made available via all normal book retailers, wholesalers and via Amazon in the UK, Europe and the USA. Release date is yet to be confirmed.

From the original 1998 cover blurb…

In little more than ten years, and by none of the traditional routes, Winona Ryder has firmly established herself as the single most exciting actress of her generation. A child star who literally grew up in front of the camera, Winona is the first American actress since Natalie Wood to successfully transcend a career from adolescence to adulthood.

From her first moments on screen when she sidled out of a crowd of teenage children in David Seltzer’s Lucas and said “Hi! How was your summer?” Winona Ryder has been someone to watch. Her alert, expressive eyes telegraph a startling combination of intelligence, gravity and self possession rarely seen in the cinema today.

Intensely private, secretive, and guarded, Winona Ryder has been a public figure for more than half her life, and whereas her private persona remains an unwritten book, her public life demands attention. Now only in her mid-twenties, Winona is still growing as a person and developing as the most admired and important actress.

Now, this definitive biography traces how she came to arrive in Hollywood to make her motion picture debut at the age of thirteen, and how she reached the enviable postion of building a career strictly on her own terms by carefully avoiding the brat-pack blockbusters and rejecting the advice of agents, directors and other Hollywood insiders.

The book charts how Winona has won the respect and admiration of fans throughout the world with her offbeat beauty, fiery intelligence, wry wit and quirky charm through her early teen misfit roles in such classics as Beetlejuice, Heathers and Edward Scissorhands, and how her Academy Award nominated roles in The Age of Innocence and Little Women established her as a serious and respected actress, to her later mature roles in The Crucible, Alien Resurrection and Woody Allen’s Celebrity.

It tells a uniquely different Hollywood story from Winona’s unconventional childhood raised on a California commune surrounded by such counterculture figures as Allen Ginsberg, Lawrence Ferlingetti, and Winona’s late godfather, Timothy Leary; of her troubled school years, from being vicously attacked by school bullies through her independent home study to enrolling in drama classes at San Francisco’s prestigious American Conservatory Theatre, making her first fillm, and borrowing her name from Sixties rocker Mitch Ryder.

The book gives a detailed account of a remarakbale career in a decade of making over twenty films that has included notoriety of being engaged to Hollywood rebel Johnny Depp; of her dedication to the search for missing children through her crusade to find kidnapped, and later murdered child, Polly Klaas; and of the drive that causes her to be constantly working even through physical exhaustion, and her refusal to conform to the Hollywood ideal of fame.

This affectionate and immensely readable biography is based on Winona Ryder’s own memories and recollections through her media interviews as well as those from friends, relatives, directors, colleagues and co-stars.

About the Book…

The book was the first British biography of Winona to be published in 1998. It was nominated for the Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction, became a Daily Telegraph bestseller, and the source for several major TV documentaries transmitted in the UK, USA and Canada. The book also won its author, Nigel Goodall, recognition as Ryder’s key biographer. His research archives still serve to this day as a primary resource for television, magazines and libraries.

An eBook edition of the original paperback, with new cover design, and completely revised by restoring passages cut out of the original manuscript together with the addition of new material that covers the same period of the original print edition, was made available, under license from Nigel Goodall, in 2010 by digital distributor Andrews UK.

“The Iceman” on Telluride festival

Sep 7th, 2012

The Iceman, a superviolent new film based on the true story of a mafia contract killer who became one of the most prolific murderers in history, had its world premiere Aug. 30 in Venice and its North American premiere Sept. 2 at Telluride. The project features an awards-worthy performance by Oscar nominee Michael Shannon, albeit in a film that is about as far outside of the Academy’s wheelhouse as one can get, which leads me to believe it probably will go unrecognized.

The Iceman, which is still seeking a U.S. distributor, was directed by Israeli filmmaker Ariel Vromen, who also co-wrote the project with Morgan Land. Vroman’s first feature in six years and third overall, it was produced by his countryman Ehud Bleiberg, who has had four films at Telluride in the past five years, including the terrific The Band’s Visit and Precious Life. The film recounts — often in shockingly graphic ways — the three decades during which Richard Kuklinski, a guy from Jersey City with a dark personality, meets his wife (Oscar nominee Winona Ryder in a nice role and looking as good as ever) and gets pulled into and then comes to depend on a life of crime.

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More pictures for “The Iceman” Premiere

Sep 3rd, 2012

I added a second batch of HQ pictures from “The Iceman” red carpet in Venice. Check it:

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