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The Irish Film and Television Academy (IFTA) have announced the nominees for this year’s Awards which will take play on May 24th. TV3 will be bringing Irish viewers and the home audience all the excitement from Ceremony and the Red Carpet in a one hour IFTA Awards Special with all the highlights and interviews with nominees and winners, stars of the screen, guest presenters, Lifetime and special guests. (Source)

Michael has been nominated for Best Actor for his role in Frank, and the movie has also been nominated as Best Film, Best Director, Best Supporting Role for Domhnall Gleeson, Director Of Photography, Editing, Make-Up & Hair, Original Score and Sound.

Michael Fassbender has been nominated for the Supporting Actor category for his role in Frank in the 2014 British Independent Film Awards.

Lenny Abrahamson, the director, has also been nominated, along with Jon Ronson and Peter Straughan for Best Screenplay, Maggie Gyllenhaal for Best Supporting Actress and Stephen Rennicks with the Music in the Technical Achievement category.

The British Independent Film Awards ceremony will be held on December 7th.

You haven’t lived until you’ve stared FRANK right in the face. Frank, if you didn’t know, is the star of the quirky British comedy of the same name; an eccentric frontman of a band of strange musicians, he never goes anywhere without his gigantic paper mache head.

Odd, yes. Odder still when you consider the fact Frank is portrayed by Michael Fassbender, one of the most charismatic leading men in the movies today. But don’t let the giant noggin throw you off: even without good looks leading the way, Fassbender gives a dynamic, energetic performance as the unconventional entertainer. He’s matched every step of the way by rising star Domhnall Gleeson, who plays the newest member of Frank’s merry band, an aspiring musician who isn’t sure he can handle the unpredictable lifestyle that comes with being friends with Frank.

I recently spoke to Fassbender, Gleeson and “Frank” about the movie, the freedom of acting behind a mask, indies vs. franchises, and the next film we’ll be seeing Gleeson in: a little something called STAR WARS: EPISODE VII. (Just wait until Fassbender finds out about his co-star’s new gig.)

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In the Irish dramedy Frank, Michael Fassbender stars as an undiscovered musical genius whose deep eccentricities include wearing a giant paper mache head at all times. His accomplices in his quest to musical perfection include Clara (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a passionate and sometimes violent Theremin player, and Jon (Domhnall Gleeson), a pencil pusher turned keyboard player desperate to become famous.

After premiering at Sundance earlier this year, Frank hit a slew of film festivals from SXSW to Istanbul, New Zealand to Jerusalem. Now at long last it’s coming to theaters in the U.S. and to celebrate, the film’s cast and director Lenny Abrahamson sat down with us to talk about what goes on in that big paper mache head of Frank and what makes Fassbender, Gleeson and Gyllenhaal tick. Here’s what we learned:

Michael Fassbender is an unrepentant goofball. Yes. He’s an insanely sexy man who has built a reputation playing steely and intimidating characters. But if his performance as the free-spirited Frank isn’t enough to convince you of this actor’s playful nature, you have to watch the video above in full. Paired with co-star Domhnall Gleeson, Michael Fassbender came to play, breaking into song, giggling and gently teasing his interview partner.

To prepare for Frank, Fassbender played chess, the game, not the musical. There was some confusion on this point, as you can see play out above. Gleeson told me he listened to Joe Duffy, and Fassbender interjected, “I played a lot of chess. I didn’t listen to anything; I was in a chess hole.” He clarified that he did listen to Iggy Pop, but not his music, his interviews. When I admitted I thought he’d meant the musical Chess, Fassbender broke into a short improvised song, before realizing there is a chess musical. Then we briefly sang “One Night in Bangkok” together. Like you do.

Fassbender and Gleeson karaoke together, disagree on how good they are at it. After our impromptu duet I joked that the three of us should go to karaoke, only to discover the pair had gone just recently. “We did the worst ‘Irish Rover’ that ever happened,” Gleeson recalled. “I thought it wasn’t bad!” Fassbender rejoined. “It was great,” Gleeson corrected himself, “I mean, we both connected to the–yeah.”

Domnhall Gleeson is officially excited about Star Wars. That is all he’ll say about it as his contract is insanely specific on this point. Regardless, he welcomed some advice from Prometheus star Fassbender on how to place himself in a sprawling outer space saga.

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Frank is now in theaters! Here’s an interview from VanityFair.com:

You probably won’t recognize Michael Fassbender in his new movie. The actor, recently Oscar-nominated in 12 Years a Slave and exercising mutant superpowers in X-Men: Days of Future Past, didn’t starve himself for the role, grow a ton of facial hair, or contort his body at all. He just put on a giant plaster head, playing a fictionalized version of Frank Sidebottom, a performance-art creation of British musician Chris Sievey.

Directed by Lenny Abrahamson, Frank is a version of what happened when journalist Jon Ronson joined the band led by Sievey, who performed punk songs while wearing the giant papier-mâché head. In real life, Sievey usually took the mask off when he wasn’t performing. In Frank, Fassbender’s character never takes the mask off—at least not voluntarily. As such, Fassbender’s face is rarely glimpsed in the movie, but as he told Krista Smith, it’s the kind of acting challenge he’s been preparing for his whole life. And as evidenced by his busy upcoming slate, including a take on one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays, a challenge has never been something Michael Fassbender is afraid of.

Krista Smith: Frank is the most deliberately strange movie. Were you familiar with Frank Sidebottom, the character who inspired it?

Michael Fassbender: No, not until I read the script.

What was it about the script that drew you in?

When I got it and read it, I was just like, what is this? It is just so strange and wonderful. It’s my kind of sense of humor, and it also had some really poignant and touching moments in there as well.

How did you adjust to acting without a face?

It wasn’t difficult at all. I had done a bit of commedia dell’arte at drama school, and we learned a bit about using a mask and about working from the outside in as opposed to the other way around. So then it was just about finding what was most effective—where to be animated and expressive physically, and when to just be still. Because then there is a lot of ambiguity and it is kind of eerie. You don’t know what he’s thinking, where he’s coming from. Is he falling asleep in there? What’s happening? It was fun to play around with that.

About 20 minutes into the movie, I was seeing expressions in the face, which I know isn’t possible.

I think that is what happens. People start to project whatever they want onto the mask. We were hoping that after 5 or 10 minutes people would start looking at Frank and forget that it is a head. It’s kind of like Team America: World Police; after a while, you are looking at these characters and you forget they are puppets.

Your character, Frank, sings in an art-rock band alongside Maggie Gyllenhaal and Domhnall Gleeson. What was it like playing with them—with a mask on, no less?

It was kind of like a trust exercise, where I was basically falling backwards and they either catch me or they don’t. And they were always there to catch me, thankfully, so it was great.

Are you a musician yourself?

Yeah, music has always been important to me and I played different instruments when I was younger. Not very well, but I could get by with a bit of guitar. A friend of mine and I both played guitar, but we could never find a drummer or a bass player, so it never really materialized into a band.

You recently performed with the band on The Colbert Report. What was that like?

The one thing that is tricky about the mask is the sound. Hearing my voice inside the head is sort of like being in a box that is reverberating. I got into the swing of it, but it had been a while since I had it on.

The film has a lot to say about social media, both good and bad. You’re a holdout in that department, aren’t you?

I have a Twitter account just to prevent someone from putting up a fake one, but I don’t really use it. And it’s not any kind of protest. I just find it difficult to find the time. You know, I have enough trouble keeping up with e-mails and phone calls. I just think it would take up so much more of the day for me.

You’re too busy making movies. Did you finish the Western you were shooting? [Slow West, co-starring Kodi Smit-McPhee and Ben Mendelsohn].

It is being cut as we speak.

And what else do you have in the pipeline?

I finished Macbeth [opposite Marion Cotillard] and Trespass Against Us[with Brendan Gleeson]. There is still the Malick movie [filmed amid the music scene in Austin, Texas, co-starring Natalie Portman, Ryan Gosling, Christian Bale, Rooney Mara, and Cate Blanchett] and the Western. That’s it, I think.

That’s it? You’re like the hardest working man in show business!

Yeah, maybe I should take a break.

Aug 5, 2014
Published by Annie

New Clip for “Frank”

Here’s a new clip for Frank, which is set for release on August 15th:

Michael Fassbender and Domhnall Gleeson will be on the Soho Apple Store for a Q&A for the movie Frank, more info at the Apple website:

What: Meet the Actors: Michael Fassbender and Domhnall Gleeson, “Frank”
When: Thursday, Aug 7, 08:00 PM
Where: Apple Store, SoHo

Thanks Lindsey for the heads up!

Michael attended the Dublin premiere for Frank, aswell the Sundance London Film and Music Festival where Frank was screened. Here are pictures from the event, huge thanks to Claudia for the pictures!


Gallery Links:

Mar 7, 2014
Published by Annie

First Trailer for Frank

The first trailer for Frank is out:

Acclaimed Irish director Lenny Abrahamson follows up his award-winning films Adam & Paul, Garage and What Richard Did with an offbeat comedy about a young wannabe musician, Jon (Domhnall Gleeson), who finds himself out of his depth when he joins an avant-garde pop band led by the mysterious and enigmatic Frank (Michael Fassbender), a musical genius who hides himself inside a large fake head, and his terrifying bandmate Clara (Maggie Gyllenhaal).

Written by Jon Ronson (The Men Who Stare At Goats) and Peter Straughan (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Men Who Stare At Goats), FRANK is based on the memoir by Jon Ronson. It is a fictional story loosely inspired by Frank Sidebottom, the persona of cult musician and comedy legend Chris Sievey, as well as other outsider musicians like Daniel Johnston and Captain Beefhear

Via The Film Stage

Michael’s new project, Frank, is set to premiere at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, here is the info on the movie:

Frank / Ireland, United Kingdom (Director: Lenny Abrahamson, Screenwriters: Jon Ronson, Peter Straughan) —
Frank is an offbeat comedy about a wannabe musician who finds himself out of his depth when he joins an avant garde rock band led by the enigmatic Frank—a musical genius who hides himself inside a large fake head.
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Scoot McNairy.

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