The University of Texas’ Harry Ransom Center is commemorating its 65th anniversary with a star-studded gala celebrating film history and an appearance from longtime actor Robert De Niro.
The “A Celebration of Film” gala will celebrate filmmaking, film history and the creation of a new endowment called the De Niro Curator Film at the AT&T Hotel and Conference Center, located at 1900 University Ave, on Sept. 24.
Harry Ransom Center Director Stephen Enniss said the endowment will go toward ongoing efforts to preserve film history, expand film collection and “inspire the next generation of filmmakers.”
“I strongly believe in and support what the Harry Ransom Center does to open the creative process of filmmaking to students and the community,” De Niro said. “The Center has done a remarkable job curating a breadth of collections underscoring the history of the art form and the business.”
The actor is famous for starring in classic films like “The Godfather” in 1972, “Taxi Driver” in 1976, “Raging Bull” in 1980, and “Goodfellas” in 1990.
The Ransom Center’s archive collects and tells the stories of directors, writers, producers and actors from the silent era, the Golden Age of Hollywood and the age of blockbusters. De Niro donated his own archive in 2006, alongside additional materials through the present era.The Robert De Niro Papers include multiple movie-making aspects—scripts, production records, costumes, props and video from the late 20th and early 21st century. More information about the gala will be released in the coming months.
Austin native and former Longhorn Glen Powell is starring alongside Hollywood megastar Tom Cruise in the long-awaited iteration of “Top Gun.”
The sequel to the 1986 classic, “Top Gun: Maverick,” debuted in theaters Friday, and grossed an estimated $124 million at the box office on opening weekend, according to Paramount.
Cruise revisits the role of Pete “Maverick” Mitchell as he returns to the naval flight academy to train a new class of pilots—including bad-boy Lt. Jake “Hangman” Seresin, played by Powell. The 33-year-old actor told USA Today he was a big fan of the original film and had auditioned for the role of Goose’s son.
“‘Top Gun’ made me want to be an actor," Powell told USA Today. "If you don't want to be a fighter pilot or an actor after watching that movie, you're crazy."
Powell shares the silver screen with actors Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly and Jon Hamm. The Longhorn committed to the role, which he said was created with Val Kilmer’s Iceman character in mind, by getting his pilot’s license and learning how to fly an F-18.
“I've been pinching myself every second of this whole journey," Powell said. "This is what Hollywood is. It's dramatic, it beats you down a lot. But sometimes your dreams can come true in ways that you never even imagine."
Powell has starred in “Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over,” which was famously filmed in Austin, “NCIS,” “Scream Queens” and “Hidden Figures.” Paramount skipped a streaming option but the film is still in theaters.
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A QR code serving as an ad for the new Halo series lit up above the Austin skyline Sunday and Monday night.
The purple light creation involved a swarm of drones put together by streaming service Paramount+ and ad agency Giant Spoon. When scanned, it took users' phones to a trailer promoting the new Halo show based on the Xbox video game about a war between humans and aliens known as the Covenant.
To promote the show, which premiered at the SXSW Film Festival yesterday, a display about as big as two football fields towered above the Fairmont hotel, at 300 feet tall and 600 feet wide.
more photospic.twitter.com/mUSVYQTAGj— dennis hegstad \ud83e\udd20 (@dennis hegstad \ud83e\udd20) 1647226405
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the display involved 400 drones was best viewed from Rainey Street and the East Side Tavern. The drones also shifted into other designs like the Paramount+ logo.
The Hollywood Reporter also noted Austinite Dennis Hegstad took photos of the display from his balcony and heard what sounded like a swarm of bees.
Halo The Series (2022) | Official Trailer 2 | Paramount+ www.youtube.com
People on the Austin subreddit were quick to make jokes and warn about scanning random QR codes. Some commented that they expected it to be crypto-related. While that wasn’t the case this time, crypto ads are easy to spot throughout Austin.
The show, starring Pablo Schreiber as Master Chief, is set to release next Thursday.
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