The Hollywood Tastemaker You’ve Never Heard Of – Vanity Fair

I have hiked to Hope Lake, sipped a bourbon at the New Sheridan, and watched the sunset from a gondolanow Im ready for some movies.

Hello from Telluride, Colorado, where were parsing the packed Telluride Film Festival lineup, scratching our chins about a new Lord of the Flies adaptation, and battling a case of Tulip Fever.

The 44th annual Telluride Film Festival lineup is out, and its going to be a busy Labor Day weekend in the Rockies, with Joe Wrights Darkest Hour, Scott Coopers Hostiles, Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Fariss Battle of the Sexes, Greta Gerwigs Lady Bird, and Angelina Jolies First They Killed My Father all making their debuts. Thats in addition to the folks flying straight from their Venice premieres, like Guillermo del Toro bringing The Shape of Water and Alexander Payne arriving with Downsizing. Much of the magic unfolding in the mountains this weekend comes thanks to Telluride executive director Julie Huntsinger, the most powerful tastemaker youve (probably) never heard of. After four years of my asking her, Huntsinger finally relented and participated in a profile this year, with friends of the festival Gerwig, Barry Jenkins, and Fox Searchlights Nancy Utley chiming in on the role Huntsinger has played in launching their movies. When I asked Huntsinger about the festivals Oscar-minting record, including starting Jenkinss Moonlight on its path to best picture last year, Huntsinger waved off that reputation. We. Do. Not. Give. A. Shit, she said. We react to the movies on gut. You can read my full profile of Huntsinger here.

V.F.s Katey Rich e-mails:

The bizarre saga of Tulip Fever, a would-be prestige film when it was made in 2014, will end when it limps into theaters this weekend, after being shuffled around the Weinstein Companys release calendar so many times it became a running joke among film critics. For producer Alison Owen its been an even longer saga, starting when she shopped around the rights to the novel that inspired the film back in 1999. Now, she told me Wednesday, she just wants people to start judging the film on its own meritseven though various marketing decisions, like only lifting the review embargo at 1 P.M. the day of release, have made that a challenge. Its a precious jewel of a film that I know people would love and enjoy if they got to see it, Owen said. The easiest angle for people to settle on is that theres a problem with it. And thats not true and thats not fair.

V.F.s Yohana Desta e-mails:

Theres a certain joy in gender-flipped remakes and the way they skewer original films, bringing new life into old classics. The set photos from the upcoming Oceans Eleven remake alone are modern masterpieces (The beautiful coats! That perfect coif! Rihanna!). However, not all gender-flipped remakes are created equal. Just look at the chaos that erupted Wednesday when Deadline reported that writing-directing duo Scott McGehee and David Siegel are working on an all-girl remake of Lord of the Flies for Warner Bros. You know, William Goldings classic novel about boys creating their own vicious society, an allegorical tale about brutal masculinity. The announcement exasperated readers, who quickly expressed their opinions about the unnecessary remake on Twitter. Opinions such as: Doesnt this completely elide the point of the book? Shouldnt women be involved in this behind-the-scenes process? Do we need a female Lord of the Flies take when Mean Girls already exists? Your move, W.B.

V.F.s Laura Bradley e-mails:

As the new It prepares to make its way into theaters next week, its worth remembering the first adaptation: a televised miniseries that scared a generation of kids. To honor that treasured moment in coulrophobia history, I chatted with director Tommy Lee Wallace, who brought Stephen Kings It to ABC back when its lineup was dominated by The Wonder Years and Roseanne. Apart from Tim Currys fantastic performance, one of the most notable things about the miniseries is how invested it is in its charactersespecially the young Losers. As Wallace put it, I think what has been forgotten as time has gone on in the scary movie world, the horror world, is the difference between scary and gory. I think what directors are tending to forget about is, youve got to be invested in the characters. Youve got to be invested in the story for any of it to matter.

V.F.s Katey Rich e-mails:

What do Americas original sweetheart Mary Pickford, history-making Oscar winner Hattie McDaniel, and cartoonist Alison Bechdel have in common? Theyre all women who changed Hollywood forever. V.F.s Julie Miller celebrates these women and more who turned the industry on its ear, digging up some fascinating historical details along the way. Did you know that Olivia de Havilland, before suing FX Networks at the age of 101, transformed the studio system by taking Warner Bros. to court? How about that costume designer Edith Head passed off fellow art students sketches as her own to get hired at Paramount? Get your dose of girl power inspiration here.

Thats the news for this sunny-with-a-chance-of-rain Thursday in Telluride. What are you seeing out there? Send tips, comments, and canisters of oxygen to Rebecca_Keegan@condenast.com. Follow me on Twitter @thatrebecca.

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The Hollywood Tastemaker You’ve Never Heard Of – Vanity Fair

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