SANTA PICKS HIS FEET IN POUGHKEEPSIE

EDITORIAL – Santa picks his feet in Poughkeepsie. Which is exactly why William Friedkin’s The French Connection is a better Christmas movie than Die Hard. Everyone talks about Die Hard as being the first action Christmas movie. But Friedkin’s The French Connection is also a great Christmas movie as well as a balls to the wall action thriller. And Santa picks his feet in Poughkeepsie in it. What more do you want?

Here’s Why The French Connection Is A Christmas Movie

It’s obvious when you think about it. The whole film is about a friendly man with a beard from far, far away trying to bring presents to everyone in America. What could be more festive than that? Nothing, that’s what. It’s got more festive spirit than some f*cking Coca-Cola truck trying to force sugar down the necks of already morbidly obese children.

Santa Picks His Feet In Poughkeepsie

The film also boasts cuddly Gene Hackman playing everyman racist, Popeye Doyle. Popeye even dresses up as Santa to surprise one of his friends as part of a jolly Christmas prank. Once he’s caught up with his buddy, they share a laugh and a joke about picking their feet in Poughkeepsie. This scene is full of festive cheer as they giggle and prance through the junk-strewn waste grounds of New York, avoiding the used needles and rats as they go. Ho-ho-ho!

Father Christmas Has Happy Little Elves

But Fernando Rey’s real Santa isn’t working on his own. He has his happy little elves in the shape of New York mob goodfella, Sal Boca and mysterious, psychotic hitman Pierre Nicoli. With lots of hard work, they want to help Santa distribute little presents in nickel and dime bags to all the happy children of New York who have been good this year. And luckily for them, Popeye ‘Grinch’ Doyle is a lousy shot.

Next – Why The French Connection II Is An Easter Movie About The Resurrection

DOWNEY JR. AND CUMBERBATCH IN SHERLOCK XMAS SPECIAL

LONDON – Robert Downey Jr and Benedict Cumberbatch will co-star in a Xmas Special edition of Sherlock for the BBC, written by Steven Moffat and directed by Guy Ritchie.

Writer Moffat told the Studio Exec EXCLUSIVELY about the idea of getting Cumberbatch and Downey Jr together:

We’re absolutely stoked about this opportunity. Benedict Cumberbatch and Robert Downey Jr. have given audiences an amazing pair of Sherlocks, entirely different, but entirely convincing and to see them together in an adventure is almost too exciting for words. My cerebral and witty script will be complemented by Mr. Guy Ritchie’s high octane, and slightly nonsensical action direction.

How will you explain the presence of two Sherlocks in the same world?

That’s relatively easy. It’s no secret that I also have had a hand in the new Doctor Who. Well, I’ve decided to move both the Sherlocks into the Doctor Who universe. In fact, there is a reveal that explains how it is that Sherlocks are so clever. What I’m saying is what if the Sherlocks actually had access to a machine that allowed them to travel in time and were also able to regenerate.

Sherlock Holmes is a Time Lord?

Not only a Time Lord. Why not THE Time Lord?

Doctor Sherlock Holmes will be broadcast on Christmas Day.

DO AFRICANS KNOW IT’S CHRISTMAS?

LONDON – Do Africans actually know it’s Christmas? The Studio Exec investigates:

The idea that Africans don’t know when Christmastime is originates from the song written by Midge Ure for Band Aid thirty years ago and recently reissued to raise money for the Ebola crisis. Our Africa expert Dr. Chadden Berstill, however, contests the factual grounding of the Ultravox singer’s lyrics.

Chadden told the Studio Exec EXCLUSIVELY:

Africa is the second largest and second most populous continent in the world. It is made up of 52 recognised countries with a total population of over 1.1 billion people of whom 400 million are Christians. The idea that these Christians, or indeed the non-Christians who live in a world which is increasingly availing itself of technology and education, would somehow not know it was Christmas is stupid beyond belief.  Even in famine struck areas, or places where Ebola has claimed many lives, there is no evidence that the Gregorian calendar has ceased to exist and major religious festivities have been forgotten. The only African countries that do not use the Gregorian calendar as its civil calendar are Ethiopia and Eritrea.

A ha!

But even this calendar is a Coptic Christian calendar which still dates Christmas on the 7th of January.

That must be a mistake. Everyone knows Christmas is December 25th.

No. The Ethiopian date is actually based on the older Julian calendar and therefore can lay a claim to being more authentic.

Okay but the rest of the song is lyrically accurate, right?

No. The line ‘there won’t be any snow in Africa this Christmastime’ is inaccurate. There will be snow on Kilimanjaro, the Atlas mountains, high ground in Algeria and Morocco. The line ‘Nothing ever grows, no rain or river flows’ is arrant nonsense. Africa extends through the tropics, so there are plenty of places where it rains. And as for rivers the f*cking Congo flows for instance, oh, and the Nile.

Okay, but aren’t you being a little harsh. They are trying to help after all. And they changed some lyrics.

One of the most despicable lines: ‘Tonight thank God it’s them instead of you’ has thankfully gone, but one of the new lines about the Ebola epidemic gives the worst kind of scaremongering: ‘Where a kiss of love can kill you and there’s death in every tear’. Jesus Christ, close the borders! This makes Nineteenth Century missionaries look positively enlightened. I’m not doubting the good intentions of Harry Styles, Bob Geldof, Sinead O’Connor and Bono, but they’ve had thirty years to think about the negative impact of portraying Africa as one big homogeneous pit of misery and death. When I listen to this, I don’t think of the Africa I know with its color and variety. I think of Mordor.

Still Band Aid 30 is there if you want to buy it. Which is certainly better than doing nothing. 

FLUFFER’S CHRISTMAS CAROL

Having just lost three games of backgammon to Omar Sharif I thought things couldn’t get any worse… Then my agent rang to say I’d got a part in yet another version of A Christmas Carol.

Obviously I hadn’t read the script, so I imagined it would just be me sat in a leather bound armchair looking twinkly, open the book, read the first line and dissolve to a snowy olde London towne. The plan was I’d then head to the bar for a large brandy and some cheesey nibbles until they were ready to do another shot of me closing the book, smiling benevolently and saying Merry Christmas. 

 
The only trouble was bloody Dirk Bogarde had already nabbed that part so I had to pick from what was left. For a while it looked like I’d have to drag up and play Mrs Fezziwig, but luckily Jack Lemmon was quite badly hurt when I accidentally pushed him down the stairs, so I got to do Jacob Marley instead. It’s the best part in the whole thing really: because you’re a ghost you can just roll your eyes a lot, wiggle your fingers and start wailing if you forget your lines and that buys you enough time to work out what to say next. 
 
I don’t think Sophia Loren was anyone’s first choice to play Scrooge, but she was box office gold in those days and as soon as the producers saw her, the dollar signs popped in to their eyes. Sadly, it wasn’t a big hit, but releasing it right in the middle of the hottest summer on record didn’t help much.  I was just glad they didn’t use the take where I gave Mrs Cratchit the goose and she kneed me in the cranberries. God bless us every one, as dear old Tiny Tim would say! But that’s another story…