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The Reeler Blog

The News: Brooklyn Rapper Hits the B.I.G. Time

Jamal "Gravy" Wollard, coming soon to a theater near you

By S.T. VanAirsdale

Some of today's movie news of note from around New York:

--Congratulations to Brooklyn's own Jamal Woolard for winning the Biggie Smalls Casting Sweepstakes and landing the lead in Fox Searchlight's upcoming biopic about the late rapper, Notorious. This is indeed the same Woolard (a k a Gravy) who was wounded in the Hot 97 Shootout Rematch in 2006; alas, Biggie's mother Voletta Wallace was a little more complimentary of Woolard's "charming personality, warm spirit, wonderful sense of humor and beautiful smile" than his "classy bullet-taking-in-the-ass skills" while praising his selection to The Hollywood Reporter.

--SPOILER ALERT! Considering the implications of this week's teens-'n'-death tandem Paranoid Park and Snow Angels, a sober Andrew O'Hehir is ready to move on: "If a movie's going to put you through the death of a child and a gruesome murder-suicide, the catharsis on offer has to be closer to Shakespeare's level than to a competent blend of Little Children and Napoleon Dynamite. ... Can we declare an end to the age of earnestness yet?"

--Have you heard that Manoel de Oliveira is old? Like, almost 100? Today in The Times, Dennis Lim looks back at the century that was.

--In a tongue-in-cheek tribute to its own maestro-in-residence, Anthology Film Archives announced it will celebrate its just-installed new seats March 21 with what programmers are calling "the ultimate test": Jonas Mekas's 288-minute, three-decades-in-the-making personal epic As I Was Moving Ahead Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty.

Posted at March 6, 2008 9:02 AM

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