Leslie Combemale

Leslie Combemale writes as Cinema Siren for websites including LikeABossGirls.com, where she promotes women in film with her own column. She is in her third year as producer and moderator of the "Women Rocking Hollywood" panel at San Diego Comic-Con. Find all her interviews and reviews at cinemasiren.com.

 

Articles by Leslie Combemale

 

San Diego Comic-Con 2018: Expanding Fan Support for Women in Film — Leslie Combemale reports

san diego comic con logoFor many years, there have been symposiums, panels, and gatherings at many of the world’s film festivals to educate and support women both in front of and behind the camera. This has always made sense. There are far more opportunities for female filmmakers and stories in the independent space. Recently, another study announced the continued bleak percentages of women being hired to helm films at the major studios. What reason then, would there be for expanding representation of women on panels and at events surrounding San Diego Comic-Con, or SDCC as it’s known to fans? It is the convention that celebrates the most popular, most promoted, and studio-driven projects in Hollywood. As it turns out, every reason in the world. Continue reading…

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SPOTLIGHT AUGUST 2018: Emily Mortimer, Actress, Producer, Screenwriter and Loyal Feminist Colleague

emily_mortimer 018.tifEmily Mortimer’s new film, The Bookshop, releases theatrically this month, and she’s doing a lot of press. She is disarmingly charming. The the longer you speak with her, the more she seems to the quintessential English lady, one whose personality encompasses the casually polite and well-appointed elegance of a gal you might encounter on a commuter train from Oxford to Southhampton, along with the admirable qualities of stalwart Women’s Land Army volunteers who fed their country during World War II. Continue reading…

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From Comic-Con: #FemaleFilmmakerFunko for #FemaleFilmmakerFriday — Leslie Combemale comments

Proposed Patty Jenkins Pop, designed by Leslie Combemale

Proposed Patty Jenkins Pop, designed by Leslie Combemale

I approach San Diego Comic-Con annually as an avid supporter and passionate advocate of women in film, the perspective from which I have produced and moderated the panel Women Rocking Hollywood for the third consecutive year. The panel and my overal Comic-Con participation are a highlight of my professional year, especially because I have found Comic-Con to be quite receptive and progressive about recognizing women in film. My tenure has also pushed me to become a better critic and a bigger fan, and I’ve become an obsessive collector of Funko Pops, those wonderful figures that memorialize the characters I love. Unlike my husband, who hunts down the yearly releases that will later be found on Ebay for upwards of a thousand dollars, I buy only the occasional figure that strikes my fancy. When they DO strike my fancy, I absolutely positively must have them.Continue reading…

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SPOTLIGHT June 2018: Andrea Riseborough, Actress, Director, Producer, Outspoken Activist

andrea riseborough head 3This month’s Alliance of Women Film Journalists SPOTLIGHT is on quadruple talent Andrea Riseborough, who in addition to writing, acting, and producing, has recently added directing to her arsenal of skills and cache of passions. If her name only barely rings a bell, don’t worry. As a performer, Riseborough is a chameleon who prefers to slip herself completely into each acting role. She never looks the same way twice. In fact, even if fans have been following her career since her first appearance, they are still unlikely to know her real hair color. They may not even be able to recognize her on the street. In speaking to Riseborough about her career and latest role as producer and star of the indie release Nancy, she makes it clear she couldn’t care less about celebrity recognition. Continue reading…

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SPOTLIGHT April 2018: Lynne Ramsey, Glaswegian, Director of YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE

LYNNE RAMSAY HEAD 1Writer/director Lynne Ramsay is yet another confirmation that Scotland is one of the coolest places on the planet for cultivating artists. Ramsay has created a multi-hyphenate career as writer, director, producer, and cinematographer. A number of distinguished film world insiders have called her one of the greatest living filmmakers. As evidenced by her career and loyal fans, it appears that she stands squarely in the middle of those Scots who don’t suffer fools, and for better or worse, dance to their own drums. Continue reading…

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SPOTLIGHT February 2018: Daniela Vega, Star of A FANTASTIC WOMAN, Chile’s Oscar Contender

daniela vega head glamawfjspotlightsmallsmallTrailblazers whose groundbreaking accomplishments change the world, clearing the way for those who follow in their footsteps, are often reluctant to draw attention to themselves. Their motivation is simply to be allowed to be themselves. So it is with Daniela Vega, the first openly transgender actress and model in Chile, and star of the Oscar-nominated A Fantastic Woman. Continue reading…

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Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman on LOVING VINCENT — Interview by Leslie Combemale

Loving Vincent is the first fully oil painted feature film. The brainchild of two filmmakers who have worked in animation, special effects, and live action, the film breaks new ground, while being visually stunning and driving a story about the last few weeks in the life an artist who died penniless but is now one of the most famous in history. All the characters in the film are performed by real actors, either on special sets or in front of green screens, and their work is combined with computer animation and painted animation. There are over sixty-five thousand frames in the film, and at the end of each shot, they were left with the painting of the last frame of the shot. There are eight hundred and ninety-eight shots in the film. Continue reading…

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CALL ME BY YOUR NAME — Review by Leslie Combemale

Call Me By Your Name, the spellbinding meditation on coming-of-age as a gay young man in 80s rural Italy, is a lyrical, mesmerizing, experience at the cinema that numbers among the best movies of the year. It is also one of the most moving portrayals of gay love ever released on film. Continue reading…

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Story Supervisor Jason Katz on Creating COCO — Interview by Leslie Combemale

The new Pixar film Coco speaks about ancestral ties, remembrance, and celebration. It is a story that follows young musician Miguel on his journey into the Land of the Dead to solve a family mystery, embrace his passion for music, and create his own destiny. I interviewed Story Supervisor Jason Katz, who has had a hand in nearly every Pixar release since Toy Story, including being co-story supervisor for Finding Nemo and Ratatouille. He has been involved in building Coco from the beginning, and talks here about his perspective on leading the story department as his mentor Joe Ranft would have done, what inspired him in developing the film, and how Coco is much more about life, remembrance, and his grandmother Florence, than about death. Continue reading…

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