Director Dolan cuts Chastain from upcoming film

Jessica Chastain
Updated 06 February 2018
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Director Dolan cuts Chastain from upcoming film

MONTREAL: Canadian director Xavier Dolan announced he had cut American actress Jessica Chastain’s character from upcoming drama “The Death and Life of John F. Donovan.”
In Instagram posts shared on Sunday evening, Dolan said he had to rework the first cut of the film, which lasted over four hours.
“What you need to hear from me is that Jessica Chastain’s character, after what was a long period of reflection, had to be cut from the film,” he said, adding that the decision was “editorial” and not reflective of Chastain’s performance in the drama.
Instead, Dolan explained, Chastain’s “villain” character “did not feel like it belonged to the rest of the story.”
“I am disappointed that we didn’t get to reveal the exciting things we crafted together on this one adventure,” he said, adding he wanted fans to hear the news from him.
However, Montreal native Dolan added he is “beyond happy” with the film and “eager” to share it with fans — but did not give a release date.
“The Death and Life of John F. Donovan,” which documents a young actor’s reflections on correspondence he shared with an American TV star as a child, is Dolan’s most ambitious work yet — and his first English-language film, with stars including Kit Harington and Susan Sarandon.


R&B star Alicia Keys to host 2019 Grammy Awards

Updated 16 January 2019
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R&B star Alicia Keys to host 2019 Grammy Awards

  • Alicia Keys will replace James Corden, British-late night comedian, who hosted two years in a row
  • Numerous female performers are contending for the awards this year

LOS ANGELES: American singer and songwriter Alicia Keys will host the Grammy Awards next month, she announced Tuesday, one year after the gala came under fire over diversity concerns.
Keys -- herself a 15-time Grammy winner -- will be the emcee for music's biggest night, which this year features a diverse slate of women and hip hop artists as leading contenders.
"I know what it feels like to be on that stage, and I know what it feels like to be proud of the work that you've put in and to be recognized for it," Keys said in a video posted on social media.
"I feel like it's the perfect opportunity for me to give the light back and lift people up -- especially all the young women that are nominated," she added.
"To me, it feels like sister vibes."
Keys replaces James Corden, the British-late night comedian who has hosted the awards the past two years.
Since releasing her blockbuster album "Songs in A Minor" in 2001, classically trained pianist Keys has sold more than 30 million records and become a successful film, television and Broadway producer.
Her appointment as Grammy host comes after the Recording Academy -- which organizes the event -- faced backlash that the show is consistently too male and too white.
Academy head Neil Portnow said in May he would step aside when his contract expires later this year, after he triggered outrage after saying women artists should "step up."
"A dynamic artist with the rare combination of groundbreaking talent and passion for her craft, Alicia Keys is the perfect choice as host for our show," Portnow said in a statement.
Rap superstar Kendrick Lamar is leading the Grammy pack with eight nominations, propelled mostly by his work on the "Black Panther" soundtrack.
Women performers also boast a heavy presence in top categories after being largely snubbed a year ago.
Rapper Cardi B, pop diva Lady Gaga and folk-rock singer Brandi Carlile all nabbed key nominations for the show, which will take place on February 10 in Los Angeles.