June 27, 2011

Marriage Equality Passes in New York

After years of trying, marriage equality finally passed in Albany last Friday night.  With the leadership of Governor Cuomo and the remarkable votes of four Republican senators, the bill was signed into law by the governor shortly before midnight.  The support from across the aisle was key and notable too for one senator's moving statement describing his vote: “I cannot deny a person, a human being, a taxpayer, a worker, the people of my district and across this state, the State of New York, and those people who make this the great state that it is the same rights that I have with my wife.”  Thank you Senator Mark J. Grisanti....for your vote and your simple eloquence. 

To celebrate the event, there was an impromptou street party in the Village on Friday night in front of the historic Stonewall Inn.  It was there that 42 years ago, almost to the day, gays and lesbians and transgenders stood up for their rights for the first time as they fought back against a police raid on their bar. The ensuing riots lasted for 3 nights.  I stopped by the Stonewall on my way home later that night and, instead of bricks and broken glass, there was confetti and glitter and plastic champagne flutes on the sidewalk. It was a stunning sight to see.

Flipping through the TIMES photos of yesterday's gay pride parade, there was another image that got my attention.  It was a picture of a female police officer along the parade route, down on one knee, as she proposed to her lesbian partner in front of a receptive crowd.  Wow....to see it for yourself, just click here.  This is one of those pictures worth a thousand words as it captures the incredible story of the progress of the modern gay/lesbian civil rights movement....from police brandishing riot sticks to offering a glittering engagement ring.

June 21, 2011

The Swedish Lady With The Laptop

The quasi-widow of famed Swedish novelist Stieg Larsson is profiled in todays NY TIMES and she has quite a story.  Larson, author of the "The Girl With The Drago Tattoo" series of books, died in 2004 before his books took off and ultimately created a literary estate worth upwards of 10 million dollars.  Unfortunately, his companion of 23 years (they never married) Eva Gabrielsson received nothing and Larsson's father and brother has refused to give her anything.

What she does have is an amazing bargaining chip; Stieg's laptop computer with the remains of an unfinished novel on its hard drive.  Score! She has tried negotiating with the father/brother over this issue but the talks broke off.  In addition to that, she now has her own book with the great straightforward title "There Are Things I Want You To Know About Stieg Larsson And Me".  OK then...sounds intriguing.  I'd be interested in taking a read though I guess i should probably read the Millenium triology first.

June 20, 2011

AUGUST's SF Premiere & A Great Review in VARIETY

AUGUST had its San Francisco premiere at the historic Castro Theatre on Saturday night.  It was a sold out house of 1,400 (yes, the balcony was open!) and the response was amazing.  Even the Q&A after was interesting as, in true SF-style, someone asked about all the tobacco smoking in the film and whether it was stylistically intentional (A: Yes!).

Also, someone else asked if the actors were gay or straight.  Eldar's answer to that question, which is that he essentially hired who he thought were the best actors for the roles and did not quiz people on their sexual orientation, drew a hearty round of applause from the crowd.  I remember being asked this question some 17 years ago with my short film POOL DAYS....when will people stop asking this inane and insulting question?  Hopefully sooner than later....

Anyway, VARIETY published our first major review for the film and it was great! You can read the full review here and there should be more coming out soon.  I will try and link/post them here as well.  Next stop for AUGUST is Outfest in L.A....the film will screen at the Directors Guild Of America main theatre on Sunday, July 10th at 9:45pm (with cocktail reception beforehand at 8pm).  Tickets are onsale at www.outfest.org.  Hope to see you there!

June 17, 2011

F-Word Kids Book Hits #1 On NYT Bestseller List

There is a very unusual book at the top of the NY TIMES bestseller list this Sunday; not only does it have the F word in it but, ostensibly, its a book by and about children.  "Go The Fuck To Sleep" is a storybook in rhynme which deals with every parent's greatest challenge of getting their kids to go to bed.  There is a story about the whole thing in today's Hollywood Reporter which, as an author, I found interesting in the unusual way the book made it from idea to bestseller in under a year.

It started out as an online gag on Facebook by author Adam Mansbach and then became a PDF that he started sending out to independent book retailers.  It was originally due out in October but when it shot to Number 1 on Amazon 7 months before it's pub date, they decided to move up the release.  They even did a  hilarious recording of the book in which none other than Samuel Jackson himself tells the little kiddies to "go the fuck to sleep".  You can listen to that below....

June 15, 2011

What If Ferris Bueller Had To Grow Up

I got this from a friend of mine who knows my love of all things FERRIS.  It's a cute fake trailer for a new version of FERRIS BUELLER in which Ferris has become an adult and must take some responsibility for his actions.  I think the funniest bit is with the ATM, spoofing the scene in the art museum from the original.  The Ferris is okay but the guy they got for Cameron is a total ringer for the original.  He's mastered that same Cameron-blank-face-thing.  And there is a crazy cameo towards the end playing the sausage king of Chicago.  Too bad they clearly shot this in NYC!

June 14, 2011

Trailer For A New TV Series HALF-SHARE Hits Web

Last fall, I worked on a hilarious pilot for a TV series about Fire Island called HALF-SHARE.  It's about the antics in a group house of gays in the FIP, featuring Alec Mapa (UGLY BETTY, THE VIEW) as the ultimate house mother.  The show has an incredible cast of talented comic actors, including Sam Pancake (SHIT MY DAD SAYS), Jack Plotnick (GIRLS WILL BE GIRLS) and gay rom-com "queen" Jesse Archer (SLUTTY SUMMER, VIOLET TENDENCIES), who wrote and directed the pilot with Sean Hanley.

You can now watch the trailer on YouTube where it is blowing up....over 2,000 hits in less than 24 hours!  There's more info about the show too on the official website including lots of fun and sexy behind-the scene pics. Hopefully this will be coming to a net-werk near you soon....LOGO, are you listening?

June 13, 2011

WTC Fundraiser Book BLUE SKY--Just 5 Copies Left!

For WTC VIEW Onstage at 59E59 Theaters, I put together a limited edition photobook that was on sale as a fundraiser at the theater to help raise money for our show.  Now that run has wrapped up, I have just a few copies left of the book which I'm selling to finish paying off all our bills.

The book, BLUE SKY, is a collection of photos I've taken over the last decade of blue skies, echoing that magnificent sky over New York City on the morning of September 11th. The book is a beautifully bound, hardcover, 40 pages long with more than 60 full-color images.  I have also signed each copy on the frontis page as well. Above is a picture of the book and below are some images featured in its pages.

The book costs just $40, which includes shipping too.  If you're interested in purchasing one, just write an email to "me@briansloan.com" for details.  You can pay by check or PayPal, whichever is most convenient.  Thanks again for your support of WTC VIEW....it was a great success!

Washington DC, 2003
Jones Beach, 2006
Playland, 2009

Palm Springs, 2002   

                                                           Lower Manhattan, 2008

June 10, 2011

Warning: Your Child Might Be Gay, Circa 1991

I saw this video posted on a couple friends' walls on Facebook this AM and, from the description, had to watch it.  It's from 1991 and is a video of a 9-year old boy Robert Jeffrey doing some amazing dance moves and lip-synch to Madonna's VOGUE.  It was recorded at a summer resort in New Hampshire and it is pure awesomeness. Seriously, this kid has got the moves! It's like he had been rehearsing for this moment for weeks in his bedroom watching the video on MTV over and over again but also adding his own crazily unique personal flair too.  Just amazing!

From what little information I found on Vimeo. Robert has not grown up to be a Broadway chorus boy but is actually a writer/filmmaker.  If one can consider this his first film, then I can't wait to see more. This video truly made my weekend and the weekend hasn't even started yet!  Enjoy :)

ME AT NINE, PERFORMING TO MADONNA IN SUMMER '91! from Robert Jeffrey on Vimeo.

June 9, 2011

A New Movie Premieres Tonight At The Seattle Intl Film Festival

Now that the excitement of putting WTC VIEW onstage at 59E59 Theaters has ended with our last performance on Sunday, it's back to my day job in the film/TV world. But in a case of good timing, the excitement continues this week with the world premiere of a feature film I worked on called AUGUST.  The premiere is happening tonight at the prestigious Seattle International Film Festival, with a gala screening at the Landmark Egyptian Theatre.

AUGUST is a sexy, romantic drama that tells the story of a love triangle that occurs when an ex-boyfriend shows up in Los Angeles during a heat wave.  I co-wrote the film and helped produce it with a very talented filmmaker at the helm;  Eldar Rappaport. I met Eldar in 2005 at a screening of his amazing short film POSTMORTEM at Outfest.  I was so impressed by his work on that project that I suggested we develop it into a feature.  And now, six years later, voila!  Two of the amazing actors from the short film return to continue their roles in AUGUST, Murray Bartlett and Daniel Dugan, along with the addition of sexy newcomer Adrian Gonzalez.

After the world premiere tonight, AUGUST will be on the festival circuit this summer and fall.  Other upcoming screenings include June 18th at the Frameline Festival in San Francisco and at Outfest in Los Angeles on July 10th, both of which I'll be attending.  There will also be dates in Philadelphia and New York City later in the July....for continued updates and info, please check out our Facebook page and LIKE the film too.  Anyway, I'm just thrilled to be able to finally share this new collaborative project with audiences around the country and hope to see you at one of the films' upcoming screenings.

June 8, 2011

World Naked Bike Ride in NYC This Weekend

This Saturday and Sunday, people around the world will be biking naked as part of a celebration called the World Naked Bike Ride.  This has been going on for a few years now as a way to celebrate both the human form in all its bare glory as well as promoting biking as a greener way to get around.

The ride in NYC takes place this Saturday starting at 5pm in East River Park, just south of the Williamsburg Bridge.  The actual route is something of a secret so that the police cannot harrass them too much.  The riders say that it's the one day you can ride naked through the streets. Technically this is not true but there is always safety in numbers, of course.  Nudity is not required as the policy is "bare as you dare".

Here's a YouTube video of last year's ride to give a sense of the whole thing.  Note that this is NSFW....as you might guess a video of World Naked Bike Ride Day would be  :)

June 3, 2011

It's National Donut Day....OH YEAH!

Today is National Donut Day and to celebrate, Dunkin' Donuts has been doing at trivia contest on Twitter this afternoon.  I just sent in my reply to the question: what is the top selling donut in the US?  Chocolate frosted, chocolate glazed, or glazed. My answer--Glazed.  I found this one easy because whatever the rest of America likes, I usually don't like so with my personal fave being chocolate frosted, I'm sure the big ol' USA prefers bland glazed.  Not that I would turn down a glazed if offered....

Anyway, not to be outdone in celebrating this national semi-holiday, sugary rival Krispy Kreme is just giving them away. Literally. If you stop by your local KK today, you can get one free donut.  I would do this but I think the only outlet in Manhattan is up at Penn Station and I'm feeling a bit downtown today (i.e. at home and not going anywhere).  But maybe that $50 gift card will come through with Dukin'...that would be sweet!  LOLz

June 1, 2011

Woody Allen's New Movie Started As A Stand-Up Sketch

On Sunday, I went to see Woody Allen's lastest film MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, which is awesome.  It reminded me of BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, though not as insane but more mellow and romantic.  It's about a writer wandering in Paris after midnight who stumbles into the Lost Generation of the 1920s and starts to pal around with them.  To say more than this would be to ruin the fun of this simple but delightful bit of movie magic.

I went with my friend Vanessa, who also loved it but thought the conceit sounded familiar. She referred me to a website that has printed out a transcript of Allen's comedy records from the 1960's in which Woody does a routine called "The Lost Generation" that places himself squarely amidst the writers/poets/ partiers of that era to highly comic effect.  If you click through above, you can scroll to the very bottom and read it. It's probably best to see the movie first but either way the routine is funny and clearly was the seed nearly 40 years ago for this funny new film of his.