Thursday, May 03, 2007

Congratulations, Stuart K-mumble-s

Stuart Klawans, film critic for The Nation, has just won a
National Magazine Award (in the category "Reviews and Criticism," of course) for three of his articles there. Technically it looks like the magazine's editor won for publishing them, but in that sense I may as well win for reading the damn things--Mr. Klawans is the one what wrote them. Truly, they could put any 3 of his reviews up against any current competition. He's absolutely one of the best in the business and I keep my subscription to the magazine in no small part for him. (And my post title is rather an inside joke--back in 1999 a letter to the magazine inquired how to pronounce the name of the beloved critic. He replied endorsing every one of her several guesses and declining to settle the matter.) Of course, Alex Ross, another one of my favorites, was up in the competition, but I'm sure he'll get his turn.

Now if The Nation would just bring someone of John Leonard's calibre back to whip that book section into a state of more consistent excellence, I'd be thrilled.

Not too adventurous a Fiction category in these awards, but I have to admit I see a lot of stories listed that make me want to fire up the search engine. (OK, search engines don't really need firing up so much as I need some caffeine to stay up all night reading. Fine. Call me John Henry. I can't keep up.)

Update: I should have mentioned earlier that Klawan's reviews have recently been collected. Excellent!

In other, much sadder news, editor and actor James Lyons recently passed away. Film industry passings are common and I don't comment on them generally, but for his work on Todd Haynes' films alone I have to pause for a moment of silence. Update: some testimonials have been posted on indiewire's site.


Some more miscellany: Candian author Yann Martel has started up an interesting project north of the border aimed at their fearless leader. There can be honor in copy-catting a good idea.

Lost actress Evangeline Lily will reportedly begin her film career starring opposite Romain Duris. OK, you have my attention.

And After Ellen has a brief interview with Jane Espenson, one of my favorite tv writers.


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