Wendell Pierce talks COVID-19, “Jack Ryan,” “Burning Cane,” and WBOK in interview with Kristine Froeba
New Orleans native, “Treme” and “The Wire” actor, Wendell Pierce is coming off of one of the most exciting periods of his career. And although COVID-19 has created a lull in almost everyone’s life and career, Pierce seems to be as visible as ever, both on the ground in New Orleans and on our collective streaming services. It is also Pierce’s instantly recognizable, dulcet tone that narrates the new Popeye’s NOLA Strong campaign released last week. It’s a video that caused more than a few locals’ eyes to well up. When the restaurant chain created its NOLA Strong family meal box, directing all profits to benefit the non-profit Second Harvest Food Bank, they called on Pierce.
The New Orleans Film Festival turned 30 this year, and their diversity in films and filmmakers is a point that they stress. This year, they screened “232 visionary, thought-provoking films that represent a wealth of perspectives,” 26% of which were Louisiana-made and 56% directed by people of color. One series based in Uptown New Orleans made its debut on the NOFF big screen and online simultaneously. “King Ester”—directed by Dui Jarrod and presented by Issa Rae’s ColorCreative production company—takes the viewer into the world of a black trans woman right before natural disaster. Filmed all over New Orleans and based in Pigeon Town (P-Town), the series is described as such:
“Ester is a trans woman struggling to find her path in New Orleans during the week before Hurricane Katrina. In the face of an evacuation order, she is forced to make a choice that will impact her future forever.”
The New Orleans Film Society kicks off the 30th New Orleans Film Festival at tonight (Oct. 16) with the Opening Night Film Marriage Story. Uptown’s Prytania Theater will screen over a dozen films, including Motherless Brooklyn, directed by and starring Edward Norton, and The Long Shadow, by Louisiana director Daniel Lafrentz. Shorts from the state and big-budget films are some festival highlights coming to the neighborhood this year. Of the 6,500 submissions from 104 countries, 232 “visionary, thought-provoking films that represent a wealth of perspectives” made it into the festival.
The star of Bravo’s Southern Charm New Orleans talks loving his new life
Former Saints player and Southern Charm New Orleans star, Jeff Charleston has a lot to say about his life, and the gist is that he’s loving every minute of it. An interview with Charleston reveals a man excited about new beginnings and a fresh start in his adopted hometown. “I cannot wait to move back to New Orleans,” said Charleston. “I just have to figure out where in the city I want to live again.” New Orleanians who don’t watch the Bravo reality series know him as No.
Uptown’s “Django Unchained” and “Queen Sugar” actor Laura Cayouette on New Orleans, Pussyfooting and Hollywood South
That cheerful, tall, lanky strawberry blonde – and avid Saints fan – you see at the Superdome and walking down Magazine Street looks familiar because she is. Actress Laura Cayouette traded Hollywood for Hollywood South nine years ago and hasn’t looked back, much. “After my first Carnival season as a resident, I called my mother and told her I wanted to sue her for child abuse,” said Cayouette. “I said I wanted to file charges for them not raising me here.”
That year was the year of the Black and Gold Super Bowl. “It was the greatest Carnival in the history of the city,” said Cayouette.
Yandr Productions, LLC, is producing a short-form series titled “#Freerayshawn” that will be filmed in Central City from Monday, May 20, to Friday, May 24. The scenes scheduled for Central City resemble a hostage situation managed by police forces. In order to maintain continuity control, the production crew will have permitted traffic control each day on the following blocks:
These areas will be affected from Monday to Friday:
1600 and 1700 South Rampart Street – Full closure
1900 and 2000 Euterpe Street – Full closure
1600 and 1700 Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard – Traffic holds of 1-3 minutes
The city encourages Central City residents and businesses to prepare for traffic detours. Please note the production will have Orleans Parish sheriff’s deputies on-site to maintain vehicular and pedestrian traffic safety. Residents and business owners who have any concerns (scheduled deliveries, construction, accessibility needs, etc.) are encouraged to contact Ashley Bunge of the Locations Department at 504-224-2225.
During the last weekend before parades take over Uptown streets, there’s still plenty to do without leaving the neighborhood. To name a few: You can take in a French movie at the Prytania or a play at the Ashe Cultural Arts Center. French Film Festival
The 22nd New Orleans French Film Festival, one of the longest running foreign language festivals in the country, showcases contemporary and classic francophone Cinema for audiences of about 4,000 at the Prytania Theatre, 5339 Prytania St., the oldest single-screen movie house operating in Louisiana. Live music and lectures will accompany a curated selection of French, French language films and a program of short films.
Je ne parle pas Française, you say? Don’t worry; all films are screened with English subtitles.
The Trolley Stop Cafe on St. Charles Avenue will be featured in the Jan. 2 season premiere of the Fox reality TV show “Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back,” the Gambit reports. Crews were filming in the 24-hour spot in the Lower Garden District last fall. The results, likely to contain kitchen drama littered with verbal abuse, will be shown Wednesday at 7 p.m. on Fox 8.
The New Orleans Film Society (NOFS) announced that the 22nd annual New Orleans French Film Festival will be held from February 15 to 21, 2019, at the historical Prytania Theatre. Last year, the festival reached a record audience of about 4000 attendees, and NOFS expects the festival to grow even more next year. The 22nd French Film Festival will showcase excellence in contemporary and classic French-language cinema from France, Canada, Belgium, Switzerland and other French-speaking countries and regions. Live music and lectures will accompany a curated selection of French and French language feature films and a program of short films. Prior to the opening night film, there will be a champagne toast for a dedicated audience of Francophiles, cinephiles, sponsors, and patrons at a private residence near Prytania Theatre. The 22nd French Film Festival passes are on Holiday Sale with a discounted price now until January 2.
With the potholes, power outages and never-ending boil water advisories, one would think New Orleans has suffered enough. But no, the Bravo network seems fit to punish us further — with Season 2 of “Southern Charm New Orleans.” While no formal announcement has been forthcoming, the worst has been confirmed by the New Orleans Office of Cultural Economy: Film New Orleans permitting department. “Southern Charm New Orleans” Season 2 has been filming around the city. The filming permit states the filming dates as Oct.
Filming for the TV series “NCIS: New Orleans” will include the sound of simulated gunfire on Tuesday afternoon near Lafayette Cemetery in the Garden District, New Orleans officials said. The filming will take place between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday (Oct. 30) in the 2800 block of Coliseum Street, according to the mayor’s office. “Filming will be conducted under the supervision of New Orleans Police Department,” the announcement states. “All filming is being done with the knowledge and cooperation of Film New Orleans, the City of New Orleans’ film office.”