tv Talking Movies BBC News December 11, 2021 2:30pm-3:01pm GMT
will limit visitors to three for each resident as omicron cases surge. the governor of kentucky says least 50 people have died after a powerful storm battered that state and four others. britain warns russia it will face severe consequences if it invades ukraine — a g7 meeting of foreign ministers is discussing rising tensions. and england's cricketers slump to a nine—wicket defeat in the first ashes test in brisbane. you may have heard of robotic surgery, where procedures are carried out remotely. surgery, where procedures well, the technology is improving all the time. now guy's and st thomas�*s hospital in london has a new robotic device for operations which aims to speed up recovery times and help patients spend less time in hospital. frankie mccamley explains.
i got most of my family's picture here, and i start from my dad taute this man was diagnosed with prostate cancer this this man was diagnosed with prostate cance , ., , , ., this man was diagnosed with prostate cance , . , , ., ., , cancer this time last year. he was asked if he _ cancer this time last year. he was asked if he wanted _ cancer this time last year. he was asked if he wanted to _ cancer this time last year. he was asked if he wanted to be - cancer this time last year. he was asked if he wanted to be the - cancer this time last year. he was asked if he wanted to be the first| asked if he wanted to be the first person in the uk to have his prostate gland removed by a new robotic system. it is prostate gland removed by a new robotic system.— robotic system. it is nice to be art of robotic system. it is nice to be part of something _ robotic system. it is nice to be part of something new - robotic system. it is nice to be part of something new within l robotic system. it is nice to be i part of something new within the medicalfield, but in part of something new within the medical field, but in future part of something new within the medicalfield, but in future it part of something new within the medical field, but in future it may contribute a lot of effectiveness, a lot of service, to the community and therefore i had no using sd hd cameras and remote arms a few metres away from the patient, surgeons at guy's and st thomas's hospital control robotic guy's and st thomas's hospital control roboti— guy's and st thomas's hospital control robotic arms in order to car out control robotic arms in order to carry out completed _ control robotic arms in order to | carry out completed operations.
control robotic arms in order to - carry out completed operations. this hospital has the largest robotic surgery in the country with six robots carrying out operations on all different parts of the body, from lungs, to tonsils. surgeons here are pioneering new techniques that could soon be used across the uk. in that could soon be used across the uk. ., y a, , that could soon be used across the uk. ., , a, , .,, uk. in five or ten years time, most ke hole uk. in five or ten years time, most keyhole surgery — uk. in five or ten years time, most keyhole surgery in _ uk. in five or ten years time, most keyhole surgery in this _ uk. in five or ten years time, most keyhole surgery in this country - uk. in five or ten years time, most keyhole surgery in this country is i keyhole surgery in this country is going to be done with robotic assistants and it has been a slow growth over the last ten years or so, but we are now at the stage where some of these robots are so adaptable, they can help so many different types of operation. horse different types of operation. how have the patience _ different types of operation. how have the patience so far responded? pictures have been fantastic. they been very positive, thankfully the result so far have been good. in nasser's case, the results were everything he hoped for, he is cancer free and making everything he hoped for, he is cancerfree and making every everything he hoped for, he is cancer free and making every day count. much more coming up on all the data's top stories at the top of the
hour. now on bbc news, it's time for a special episode of talking movies — devoted to the world premiere of steven speilberg's new film, west side story. i will give you a plug for the film review on the iplayer, because mark reviewed this yesterday. but now there is the special edition looking at a west side story. hello, from new york. i am tom brook and welcome to talking movies. today, our entire programme is devoted to what must rank as one of the big movie events of 2021, the release of steven spielberg's long—awaited
adaptation of the much—loved broadway musical west side story. i have never seen you before. you are not puerto rican. is that 0k? do you want to start world war three? west side story is a love story inspired by shakespeare's romeo and juliet, set amid warring teenage gangs, the sharks and thejets, in new york in the 1950s. it is an adaptation of the 1957 musicalfrom director director and choreographer jerome robbins, composer leonard bernstein, arthur laurents who did the book, and lyricist stephen sondheim. at the world premiere of his adaptation of west side story, stephen spielberg made it clear he was indebted to all the musicals' creative forefathers. the first feeling is gratitude and such an honour to be able to have been entrusted by the trustees and stephen sondheim to be able to make
our west side story. stephen sondheim was notjust a lyricist of the 1957 broadway west side story musical, but also for the 1961 movie and speilberg's new film. sadly, he died at the age of 91, just a few days before the world premiere. the production boasts a very talented cast. rachel zegler plays the pivotal role of maria, pretty much an unknown actress. this is her performing maria four years ago, well before stephen spielberg had even heard of her. the actress responded to an open casting call online and was selected from more than s00,000 applicants. rachel zegler may be a novice, but she has no problem selling this grand production in promotional interviews.
it is not the west side story many people remember. it is so much different in a sense that there is so much more context and if you're not going to come for the music, you should come for the characters, come for the dynamics, you should come for the dance in general. you should come for the colours. actor ansel elgort, known for his role in edgar wright's film baby driver, among others, plays the main lead in west side story, tony. what's forever? like, i want to be with you forever? you don't want to start maybe with i would like to take you out for coffee? one of the best performances in the movie comes from rita moreno who was in the original 1961 west side story, then in the role of anita. maria's close confidant. in steven spielberg's movie, moreno plays a newly—created character, valentina, the widow of corner store owner, doc. of course, west side story is not
just a presentation of appealing songs set in the 1950s, it deals with substantive matters. the film captures a world of violence and people being displaced from their homes by developers, both still issues in new york today. it also addresses racism, the puerto rican gang the sharks were the target of it. it might be a romeo and juliet—inspired love story, but it is a film that spotlights primitive bigotry. unfortunately, we have not learned our lesson. the tragedies result when hate is ascendant and no room is made for love, that bigotry and prejudice and racism are terrible sins. west side story certainly has a lot going for it, including some very strong reviews. musical films can be a tough sell to modern audiences, but at least one new york theatre critic thinks the movie will be a hit. i think this is going to do extremely well and i see
oscars all over this. i mean, i see oscars for tony kushner, for steven spielberg, for this dynamic new cast and the wonderful rita moreno. it is a sensational film and i think it will do extremely well at the box office and during the awards time. west side story of course only really came together as a result of the hard labours of three—time oscar winner stephen spielberg. arguably one of hollywood's most influential and successful film—makers. so, the man who brought us jaws, et, the indiana jones movies, jurassic park, saving private ryan, schindler's list and many other films has finally turned his hand to making a musicalfilm for the first time. i got the opportunity to talk to him virtually a few days ago. i think i wanted to direct a musicalfilm because i knew
i could not sing and dance, so it is a tremendous way of sort of throwing myself into a genre that physically i would never be part of except to be able to tell a story in that, so i have a very good earfor music, my mum is a concert pianist, but i cannot move my legs and i cannot dance and i cannot sing to save my life, but i have been in love with west side story since i was ten and heard the original broadway cast album that came out the year the play opened in new york. and my parents brought it home and it was an extraordinary experience and i have tremendous recollections as i started having kids of basically putting on the 1961 movie for them or playing them the soundtrack from the original broadway show and i have got videos of all my kids playing all the roles growing up in our house. you know, the film that you have created, in many ways it deals with love, but it also deals with violence and racism and people being displaced in 1950s new york. in what way do you think
will those themes resonate with contemporary americans? the violence in new york in 1957 that the play reflects was gang violence, in this case about third, fourth, generation white immigrants against the migrant population coming from porto rico and actually chasing down the american dream and holding jobs, whereas thejets didn't hold jobs, they were kind of homeless. they only had each other. but the sharks were on their way to real careers and real life here and that was very obvious in the �*57 broadway show, but we have such big issues today. tony kushner wrote the screenplay, adapted the script from the play, tony and i both felt that this was the time to reintroduce it to an entirely new generation who perhaps had never heard of west side story. we thought the messages were so relevant to our time and to the generation that my kids are working their way through, that we felt that this was the right
time to reimagine west side story. how evident are stephen sondheim's talents in yourfilm? because in a way it must be very tough for you right now, you must miss him being with you as you launch your film. it was devastating, it is still devastating. we are still not... i am still not really accustomed to not being able to text him and e—mail him and compare movie trivia to the 19s0s films. i mean, stephen was a tremendous cineaste and on the scale of martin scorsese and del toro, that kind of a cineaste, as i have been all my life and for all his great work work in the nonlinear, linear musical stage, he is a genius. i miss him for being able to compare movies. you know, the originalfilm, the 1961 film, had puerto rican characters played by white actors.
what did you do to get authentic representation of characters in your film? i mean, you were quite fastidious in that respect, when she? it was just that... that was our casting director who did just an amazing job at putting together the cast for us for enough selection for me to be able to select from. the first thing i said was every single shark, boy and girl, needs to come from the latin communities without fail. because i'm never going to say that anything that happened with the robert wise �*61 film was a mistake, it is what do you know and what are you responsible for in the era that you are making your movies? what is your level of consciousness about what is going on in any single era of all the decades since films began? i'm not saying that we did anything as a countermeasure to that movie,
but many, many productions of west side story have very multiracial cast where the sharks are played by talent, the kind of kids who can sing and dance and that is all that qualifies them. we just wanted for this movie to get it right in the way that we wanted every single person who plays a puerto rican to be from the latin community and that was a mandate from the get—go. i happen to live here on 110th st in upper manhattan and where i am, it is the official boundary between the upper it is the official boundary between the upper west side and harlem. so, why am i telling you this? because i'm new to the neighbourhood, i'm very excited to learn that key scenes in the opening prologue of the original 1961 west side story
movie were shot right here on this playground. in fact, several new york city locations were used in the making of a picture that has become a revered classic, with legions of admirers. we thought we'd get an appraisal of the 1961 movie by seeking out the opinion of a big fan, eugene hernandez, director of the new york film festival. i think i've seen the 1961 version of west side story dozens of times, probably more than any other movie. i keep coming back to it, because i think the songs are catchy, the issues are memorable and despite the problematic aspects of the movie, itjust resonates. many of the iconic scenes that open the film were shot right near where we are talking right now, at 68th and amsterdam, on this block. west side story is probably the first musical that really
resonated with me and that i really grappled with and thought about and considered and the idea that the story was being told, this timeless story, this romeo and juliet story, was being told through verse and through song was really compelling and intriguing and provocative for me. one of the songs that has stuck with me and that i hold onto from west side story is america because it explores issues that are important and relevant to me as a latino in this country. it explores some of the tensions and issues that we are still grappling with today. one of the things that is very interesting to me and considering
west side story is that it grapples with not only how this neighbourhood was demolished and raised and what that might have meant to black and brown new yorkers who lived on these blocks, it also grapples with some really specific tensions in our own city, in new york city, many of which are still relevant today. and the movie gives us a lot to think about and reflect on the moment in which west side story was created. in the 50s, in new york, at a time when there was tension and turmoil, at a time when this neighbourhood that we are sitting in right now was demolished to make a space for what we are looking at as we sit here. five or six years ago, we presented west side story, the 1951 movie, on the plaza
at lincoln center. it was the biggest crowd that had ever had gathered on the plaza at lincoln center for this summer evening screening and the audience looked like the city of new york, people of all ages and backgrounds coming together to watch this movie for free on a friday night and i presented the film that evening and talking about how this neighbourhood had been demolished to make way for the places we were standing and it was a testament to the legacy of this film that people still want to come out and watch it together, talk about it and explore the issues that it raises.
the 1961 west side story film was part of a world where big budget musicals rules the land. they made a lot of money and won oscar trophies. then, in the 1970s and 80s, the cinema musical seemed to slip away, but could steven spielberg's west side story herald a rebirth? emma jones reports. emma: the road to steven spielberg's west side story started with a 1950s stage musical starring carol as maria and larry kurtz as tony. the broadway version of the musical west side story first appeared here in new york in 1957 in this theatre behind me and the film adaptation followed soon afterwards, not the first time that hollywood has sought to capitalise on broadway success. that multi—oscar—winning original west side story was part of a decade
where lavish broadway adaptation is notably by theatrical partnership of rodgers and hammerstein, were beloved at the box office and by the academy. # when i am with you # getting to know what to say #. the king and i won five oscars. carol reed's oliver was awarded six. my fair lady received eight oscars and was the second highest grossing film of 1964. the sound of music was the most successful film of 1955 and took five oscars, including best picture. the golden age of the hollywood musical would really have been around the late 60s, early 70s, but in the 1970s, you had some real clunkers. you had two hugely successful broadway shows, annie and a chorus annie and a chorus line,
and they were made into terrible, terrible movie musicals and that kind of took the go away from the hollywood musical and it struggled to come back. but the genre is back in 2021. directorjoe wright has made cyrano, starring peter dinklage, an adaptation of a 2018 musical of the story of a man without the confidence to pursue the woman he loves. dear evan hansen, an adaptation of tony and grammy award—winning stage show, is a story of a teenage boy overcoming profound loneliness. and leos carax's annette, an originalfilm musical written by the sparks, opened the cannes film festival. one person in particular seems a cheerleader for the modern musical. lin—manuel miranda, behind the broadway show hamilton and both the stage and film version of in the heights, a love affair set
in new york's washington heights neighbourhood. the film was released this year. he has now directed his first movie, tick tick boom, jonathan larson, a talented composer behind the musical rent, who longs to achieve something of note by his s0th birthday. i know that i worked really hard to get good at writing musicals and that skill set was helpful to me in several ways, because of course what you know you don't know. i learnt a lot on this which i will bring me hopefully to the next one, but musicals are like real life but more fun. and a desire to see a better version of real life may be driving audiences to see this new round of stories. i think we are looking for full expression, exuberance. we are looking for a cinematic experience and we are looking to sing together, maybe.
there is more communal experience that we are looking for and more joy. so i think maybe it is something to do with the pandemic. recently, apart from la la land in 2016, which was not an original stage production, rob marshall's chicago is the only other musical to find success as a film. it won the best picture oscar in 2002. the musicaljust celebrated its 25th consecutive year on broadway as a stage show. its producer knows something about what makes a hit. it has have a story worth telling and then all of the ingredients have to uphold that story. the piece has to say something, it has to be meaningful. there are some that are just pure
entertainments, but even they have an underlying story to tell. sometimes great storytelling on broadway does not translate to film. the most modern example being 2019's cats, which was described as ridiculous by the stage show�*s composer, andrew lloyd webber. but hollywood continues to see a ready—made cinema audience from these shows. after months of delays, it has been announced that cynthia erivo and ariana grande will star in the adaptation of the wizard of oz prequel, wicked. before covid, broadway was making gazillions of dollars and shows like hamilton and dear evan hansen and wicked and the lion king were as popular as any movie or tv series and i think hollywood has discovered how much
money these shows make, how popular not only in new york, but around the world. could further underline the importance of the the critical acclaim this west side story is receiving could further underline the importance of the relationship between stages and film. and after the challenges of the pandemic, interest from audiences would certainly be something to shout, not just sing about. well, that brings our special programme devoted to west side story to a close. we hope you have enjoyed the show. for me, going to see west side story was a magical experience. it really is a flawless production, perhaps a little too perfect, too overproduced at times, but really that is a minor complaint. i have to say, more than anything else, west side story proved to me the transcendent power of cinema is still very much alive. i went on a day when the headlines were packed with worrying news about variants. the movie took me to a very different place. it gave me a love story, it brought mejoy, it brought me excitement, it made me feel sane and alive,
so steven spielberg, thank you very much. we are going to leave you today with rachel zeigler, from the movie, singing one of west side story�*s most popular songs, tonight. # tonight, tonight, # it all began tonight # i saw you and the world went away _ # tonight, tonight, - there is only you tonight # what you are, what you do, what you say— # today all day i had _ the feeling america would happen # i know now i was right #. plenty of cloud streaming across the
uk at the moment. further rain to come into the evening, but some very mild air being pulled up from the south, courtesy of this area of low pressure, so actually, our temperatures above average for the time of year, through the evening and overnight. quite wet, particularly for england and wales come into the evening. skies clearing, just as some isolated showers for scotland and northern ireland. but temperatures holding up above freezing, aside from perhaps on the most sheltered glens of scotland. generally lows to the north of the uk six and 7 degrees, there milder to the south of this band of rain. overnight lows of 11 or 12 and that is because we are pulling up this warm air from a or 12 and that is because we are pulling up this warm airfrom a long way south on the atlantic and you can see we pull it almost all the way across the uk, bit like a warm blanket through the course of sunday and we do so as at this when the front swings up from the south. early rain for north wales, the midlands. i think through the afternoon the northern england and northern ireland. later in the day we will see that rain at getting
into southern scotland. temperatures though to the south of the rain it could be even up to 15 degrees in one or two spots. quite a lot of cloud around, but ate few brighter spells on the east. sunday night into monday, it looks like it could be very windy to the north—west of the uk as we get to the centre of this area of low pressure pushing through. gales for the northern and western isles. we will see the low pulling away through monday daytime, but it stays breezy here and there will be some fairly frequent showers, a little bit wintry on the highest ground and cooler air sinks into scotland, northern ireland and northern england. tempered his back average here. to the south, daytime average here. to the south, daytime average of 12 or 1s. there will be rain for england and wales on a monday, that was away on tuesday. again wet and windy to the finals of the uk through the early part of the week, but from wednesday onwards it is all about this high pressure building from the south and it so committed to the second really out anything colder making its way in.
this is bbc news. i'm jane hill. the headlines at 15:00pm: a fresh appeal for everyone who's eligible to get their covid booster vaccine — as research shows it significantly reduces the chance of developing symptoms from the omicron variant. new guidance is issued for care homes in england that will limit visitors to s, for each resident — as omicron cases surge. the governor of kentucky says at least 50 people have died in a powerful storm that's battered that five states. it is very hard, really tough, and we are praying for each and every one of those families. britain warns russia it
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