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“Their Finest” to Close Santa Barbara Film Festival

VARIETY – The Santa Barbara International Film Festival has announced the lineup for its upcoming 32nd edition, including its international gala event and opening and closing films.

Running from Feb. 1-11, the festival will open with the world premiere of the documentary “Charged,” and will close on a period note with Lone Scherfig’s comedy-drama “Their Finest,” which stars Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin and Bill Nighy.

This year’s festival will offer a wide array of films from over 50 countries, and will feature 51 world premieres and 64 US premieres, along with tributes to the year’s top talent, and panel discussions.

The festival will kick off the festival on Wednesday, Feb. 1, with a screening of “Charged,” a documentary directed by Phillip Baribeau, which chronicles the journey of chef and outdoorsman, Eduardo Garcia and his recovery after being electrocuted by 2,400 volts of electricity, miles from help in the Montana backcountry. Garcia had his hand amputated, lost ribs, muscle mass and nearly his life as a result of the incident.

The documentary is produced by Dennis Aig and Phillip Baribeau along with executive producers Teri Weinberg, Scott Ballew, Doug Ellin, Peter Hochfelder, Constance Schwartz-Morini and Michael Strahan.

Another of the festival’s segments will be an international gala, the centerpiece of which will be the French-Belgian drama “Heal the Living,” directed by Katell Quillévéré and starring Tahar Rahim, Emmanuelle Seigner, and Anne Dorval.

Their Finest,” a British comedy scheduled for a March 24 release, will close the festival. The movie is set in Britain in 1940 and stars Gemma Arterton as a scriptwriter working on propaganda films who realizes the government sponsored work could use a “woman’s touch.” Together with another writer Buckley (Claflin), the pair set out to make an epic feature film based on the Battle of Dunkirk, starring fading movie star Ambrose Hilliard (Bill Nighy).

The full festival lineup is listed on SBIFF.org.

Categories Articles Film Festivals News Press Their Finest

‘Their Finest’ Closing Santa Barbera Fest, Set for March Release

DEADLINE – The Santa Barbara Film Festival and EuropaCorp said today that the 32nd annual festival will close with the Lone Scherfig’s comedy drama Their Finest at the Arlington Theatre on Saturday, February 11 in advance of the film’s March 24 stateside release. The Santa Barbara Film Festival runs February 1-11.

Their Finest is written by Gaby Chiappe, based on the novel by Lissa Evans, and stars Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin, Bill Nighy, Jack Huston and Richard E. Grant. Pic follows a female scriptwriter (Arterton) hired by the British ministry to change the female dialogue in the country’s propaganda films during World War II. Her work is soon recognized by a charming lead scriptwriter (Claflin) who teams with her to make an epic feature about the Battle of Dunkirk starring a has-been movie star Ambrose Hilliard (Nighy).

SBIFF executive director Roger Durling said in a statement, “Lone’s deeply touching film is authentic, funny and depicts the power that cinema has to bring people together and share their stories. It was the perfect choice to close this year’s festival.”

Their Finest
is produced by Stephen Woolley, Amanda Posey, Finola Dwyer and Elizabeth Karlsen. Christine Langan, Ed Wethered, Robert Norris, Ivan Dunleavy, Peter Watson, Zygi Kamasa and Thorsten Schumacher serve as EPs. Pic is produced by Number 9 Films and Wildgaze Films.

Their Finest premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and also played the London Film Festival. EuropaCorp bought it out of TIFF with a seven-figure P&A commitment.

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Sam Claflin to Receive Spotlight Award at 2016 Savannah Film Festival

PRNEWSIWRE – The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) is pleased to announce honorees, guests and the complete film line-up for the 2016 Savannah Film Festival. Mahershala Ali will receive the Discovery Award, Sam Claflin and Molly Shannon will receive Spotlight Awards, and Miles Teller will receive the Vanguard Award. Held in downtown Savannah, the Festival runs from Saturday, Oct. 22 to Saturday, Oct. 29.

Sam Claflin will receive the Spotlight Award on Wednesday, Oct. 26. Claflin will participate in a Q&A following the screening of “Me Before You” with director Thea Sharrock and producer Alison Owen. Claflin’s credits include “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2,” “Friday,” “The Riot Club,” “Love, Rosie,” “The Quiet Ones,” “Snow White and the Huntsman,” “The Huntsman: Winter War,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” “Mary & Martha,” “White Heat,” “United,” “Pillars of the Earth,” “Any Human Heart,” and “The Lost Future.” He has just finished filming “My Cousin Rachel”‘ alongside Rachel Weisz and Holliday Grainger and in 2017 will star in Lone Scherfig’s “Their Finest” alongside Gemma Arterton and Bill Nighy.

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Emilia Clarke framed Sam Claflin for stealing her Daenerys doll, filled his socks with fish on ‘Me Before You’ set

USA TODAY – Call her the Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, and undisputed Queen of Pranks.

Yes, Game of Thrones’ Emilia Clarke is a notoriously crafty prankster, according to her Me Before You co-star Sam Claflin. Filming the tearful romance last year, her most memorable hijinks included a remote-controlled fart machine, which she would casually unleash on unsuspecting cast and crew. She also framed Claflin for “stealing” her Daenerys doll, by planting it in his bag and plastering the U.K. set with mock-up “wanted” posters.

But as a self-described clean freak, the British actor says the worst prank may have been when Clarke put fish in his socks. Claflin tells USA TODAY:

They were brand new socks. I had worn them for only three minutes in the morning — like, literally to get from my house to work. I took them off to get into my costume and they stayed in my trailer until the very end of the day. … I don’t really like fish. It’s not my favorite smell or anybody’s. I just remember as I picked up my socks, I was like, ‘That feels odd.’ So I pulled them apart and went to put one (foot) in, and I fully gagged. I was like, ‘What?’

Afterward, “he made me feel so bad, oh, my God,” Clarke says. “But then I bought him three pairs of really nice socks.”

But she didn’t get off that easy: Claflin also had his share of fun at Clarke’s expense.

I stole all her furniture, which was pretty epic,” Claflin remembers. “I stuck it all in my room, but then my room was way too overcrowded. I couldn’t move!

It’s safe to say, these two must have April Fool’s Day on lock.

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Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin grapple with love, life in ‘Me Before You’

USA TODAY – NEW YORK — To fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones, Emilia Clarke is Daenerys Targaryen, a shrewd, dragon-wielding conqueror and one of TV’s fiercest heroines.

So when Me Before You director Thea Sharrock suggested she play Louisa Clark — a spunky, idealistic young woman who takes a job caring for a wealthy, wheelchair-bound quadriplegic (Sam Claflin) — screenwriter Jojo Moyes was understandably puzzled.

I couldn’t see it,” says Moyes, who adapted her 2012 romantic novel for the big screen (in theaters Friday). “She was, for me, irrevocably linked to long, blond hair and dragons and looking very stern. But the moment you actually see her without the (Thrones) wig, she’s so warm and bubbly, and actually has the physical look of Louisa. It really took no time at all.”

Playing someone who shares her optimistic outlook and humor was part of the appeal to Clarke, who calls Louisa (nicknamed “Lou”) a “more innocent version” of herself.

Reading the book for the first time, “I was in love by page 3,” says Clarke, 29, teasing and laughing with her Me Before You co-star throughout an arduous day of interviews. “Lou felt like such a perfect extension of me. I just understood her, and it was that understanding that brought my excitement.”

Read the rest of the article/interview at the source

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‘Me Before You’ stars on pranks, ‘Thrones’ spoilers

USA TODAYLove hurts — and not just emotionally. Clarke fractured her hip midway through the shoot. That made the film’s tear-jerking climax even more difficult, as Lou dances on the beach before Will makes a startling confession. “It was super-hard anyway, from an acting point of view, because it was the most raw that we get. Then I was in so much pain,” Clarke says. Even sitting on Claflin’s lap was an almost-Olympian feat. “They had to build a little obstacle course for me,” she says. “They got all these boxes and tried to move them so I could look like I was getting on” his chair.

One wacky wardrobe. One of Lou’s defining traits is her outrageous fashion, which Will lovingly describes as that of a “leprechaun drag queen.” Of the heart-printed blouses, butterfly hairpieces and bumblebee tights, Clarke says her least-favorite items were a striped sweater and linen trousers, which Lou wears when she grudgingly watches a movie with Will. “We’ve had a fight, so I’m kind of like, ‘Whatever, dude, I’m going to wear the most normal stuff I can find,’ ” Clarke says. “Obviously, I look mental, still.” As for what she kept: “I’ve got the tights!”

“Sam stole my doll!” Clarke pulled all kinds of pranks on Claflin, including putting fish in his socks. But the most elaborate may have been when she “framed” him for stealing a doll of her Game of Thrones character, Daenerys. “I was like, ‘What? I’ve never seen your doll,’ ” Claflin says. “She put it in my bag (when) I got in the car to go home. The next morning, there were posters all over saying, ‘Wanted: Doll Thief,’ with my image.”

She had Snow idea. Like the rest of us, Claflin is a “huge” Game of Thrones fan. “I basically kept asking, ‘Want to give me some spoilers?‘ ” he says. The actor was particularly curious about the fate of Jon Snow (Kit Harington), although the Mother of Dragons says even she was in the dark: “Kit hadn’t fessed up to me yet.”

Sam Claflin Once Spilled Red Wine All Over Madonna’s House
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Sam Claflin Once Spilled Red Wine All Over Madonna’s House

It’s a certain type of character who can be found lunching at New York City’s The Crosby Street Hotel’s Crosby Bar at 2 p.m. on a weekday. But, if you survey the scene closely enough on this slightly overcast November Wednesday, you’ll notice that tucked among the dilettantes, ladies who lunch, and rosé-sniffing aesthetes, is a bonafide movie star. Luckily for Sam Claflin, who reprises his role as bronzed Merman Finnick Odair in today’s fourth and final installment of the ​Hunger Games​ saga, ​Mockingjay – Part 2​, everyone is either too engrossed in their own conversations or too cool to harass the foppish Brit twirling his rum cocktail in the corner. Though the 29-year-old actor certainly commands attention—​after all, this is the guy who can make eating a sugar cube look like lascivious foreplay—​there’s also something charmingly unassuming about him. And to hear Claflin gush about his wife, ​Da Vinci’s Demons​ actress Laura Haddock, is to know exactly what this guy is all about. So when he’s not partying with Brad and Angie (seriously), rest assured that this family man is at home with his leading lady and their beloved Cockapoo, Rosie, painstakingly creating Iggy Azalea karaoke videos. Does he contradict himself? Very well then. ​

There’s a pivotal scene in ​Mockingjay – Part 2 in which you take down a pack of grotesque CGI mutts. All my colleague Sally could talk about was how ripped your back muscles looked…

Oh no! That’s the only moment that I didn’t actually do [laughs]. That was the one stunt of the entire movie. Anyway, by the time we got to the fight sequence I was exhausted and tired and cold and hungry and no one had spoken to each other for like three weeks because we were all so miserable.

That sounds brutal.

The really difficult thing was that everyone else got machine guns and all I had was a trident! There were so many moments in the script up to that point where I didn’t actually get to do anything. I was just sort of standing behind everyone else looking after Josh [Hutcherson]’s character. When we actually got around to getting into the sewers, and doing the close combat kind of stuff, I got to play around a little bit more.
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Emilia Clarke-Sam Claflin Drama ‘Me Before You’ Moved Forward to March

The release date for “Me Before You” has been pushed forward to March 4, 2016!

Warner Bros. and MGM have moved drama “Me Before You” forward by three months to March 4, 2016, from June 3.

The movie stars “Game of Thrones” actress Emilia Clarke and “Hunger Games” actor Sam Claflin. Thea Sharrock is directing from a script by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, based on the Jojo Moyes novel about a woman in a small town who forms an unlikely bond with a recently paralyzed man.

Clarke played Sarah Connor in “Terminator: Genisys.” Claflin stars in “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2.”

“Me Before You” is the fourth major title set for March 4, following Paramount’s recent move to select that release date for its untitled Tina Fey war comedy, based on Kim Barker’s memoir “The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan.” Also opening on that date are Gramercy’s “London Has Fallen” and Disney’s “Zootopia.”

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Interview with ASOS – We chatted to Hunger Games star Sam Claflin about becoming a dad

The cutest thing ever happened last night. Sam Claflin and his megababe wife, Laura Haddock, turned up to the UK premiere of Mockingjay – Part 2 with a big surprise… the pair are expecting their first child! *squeal* We caught up with Sam in London today to chat all about the end of Hunger Games, what’s next for him and how he’s feeling about fatherhood.

Firstly, massive congratulations! Your announcement last night was pretty special… It’s all very exciting and it was amazing for Laura and I to do it on the world stage. I’m very, very lucky, that’s all I can say.

It’s the end of an era. What will you miss most about playing Finnick? I honestly was just happy to play someone who was so layered and complex. Basically every film that we did, I felt like I was playing a different character and that as an actor is a real dream come true.

How did you feel when you were shooting your final scene? It was a very tense few weeks in the run-up to that scene so it felt like another big finale for me. I was so insistent that I did all my own stunts but the truth is Jackson Spidell – who’s my stunt double – is on another level at using Finnick’s weapon in the latest movie: a massive stick. It was actually a trident but I honestly hated the fact that for the entire film I had to run around with a stick and everyone else got machine guns.

*MAJOR spoiler alert below*
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Sam Claflin: ‘I hate being offered heart-throb after heart-throb’
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Sam Claflin: ‘I hate being offered heart-throb after heart-throb’

Actors like to talk about their years in the wilderness before fame hit. Harrison Ford was a carpenter. Jon Hamm spent decades waiting tables. Channing Tatum stripped. It gives them some regular-Joe mass to weigh against their new celebrity. Sam Claflin, 29, star of The Hunger Games and Pirates of the Caribbean, is no different.

“Everyone has their struggles, I think. After I left drama school I had six months of rejection after rejection,” he says, sipping on a pint in Kentish Town, north London, in unseasonable autumn sunshine. “I thought about a plan B.”

Wait a second… Six months? Six months isn’t a period in the wilderness. In acting terms that is a mere long weekend of unemployment. After which Claflin was cast in Pirates of the Caribbean, Snow White and the Huntsman, then The Hunger Games and The Riot Club, the film version of the play Posh, a fictionalised version of the Bullingdon Club. This was in addition to TV roles in Any Human Heart and The Pillars of the Earth. By any actor’s standards, hardly a rocky road.

Still, it’s easy to understand where he’s coming from. The speed of Claflin’s ascent to matinée idol, courtesy of two of the biggest franchises of the 21st century, would embarrass any normal bloke. And apart from his career, everything about Claflin screams normal bloke. He is friendly and self-effacing, handsome and articulate. He complains about the trousers he’s wearing for our shoot being too tight for his “footballer thighs”. He was a promising junior player growing up in Norwich (you can still hear a faint Norfolk lilt in his vowels). There’s a swallow tattoo on his bicep that he got for his 28th birthday and only after years of planning. He lives in Chiswick, west London, with his wife, fellow actor Laura Haddock, because he’s “not cool enough for east London”.

Claflin says the trousers he’s wearing for our shoot are too tight for his ‘footballer thighs’
He certainly seems more at home outside a grim Kentish Town pub than he was being fussed over by make-up artists in the hot studio. Does he even enjoy the fashion shoots? “I fucking hate them! Well, no…” he adds, perhaps mindful of his PR obligations, “I just can’t understand why people would wear any of those things. But I’ve learned to enjoy myself on the day.”
Continue reading Sam Claflin: ‘I hate being offered heart-throb after heart-throb’