The 10 Best Mark Wahlberg Movies of All Time

The 10 Best Mark Wahlberg Movies of All Time

Love him or hate him, Mark Wahlberg has been a fixture in American cinema for a few decades now. The former rapper and reformed bad boy has shown that he boasts the rare ability to pick winning scrips. Here are some of his most well-known films.

The Lovely Bones

In this moving piece, Wahlberg plays a father who is haunted when the worst possible fate befalls his daughter. Throwing away his tough guy image, his dramatic chops are on display in this touching film. Directed by Peter Jackson, it also boasts incredible visual effects.

The Departed

With an all-star cast including Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson and Matt Damon, this movie seemed destined to dazzle audiences. Helmed by Martin Scorsese, this thriller cleaned up at award shows.

FEAR

Wahlberg’s starring turn as a psychotically obsessed boyfriend convinced audiences to take him seriously as an actor. Alongside major movie star Reese Witherspoon, he showed that he could carry a movie.

Planet of The Apes

Although audiences tend to be critical of reboots, they couldn’t get enough of this marvelous movie. Wahlberg’s turn as Leo Davidson was both campy, believable and fun.

The Perfect Storm

Playing a fisherman from the wrong side of the tracks in Gloucester, Massachusetts, Wahlberg’s gritty performance perfected complemented George Clooney’s more eloquent captain.

Date Night

Playing up his Calvin Klein model persona, Wahlberg’s performance as Tina Fey’s attractive ex was pitch perfect.

Ted

This was somewhat of a surprise hit. Co-starring Mila Kunis and one very outspoken teddy bear, the film reminded executives that Wahlberg was capable of carrying a comedy.

Invincible

Fans of the Philadelphia Eagles loved this film, which starred Wahlberg as the indomitable Vince Papale, a walk-on who carried the spirit of Eagles fans long before they claimed victory in the Super Bowl. Because of his role in this movie, Wahlberg admitted feeling conflicted about his allegiances during the 2018 Super Bowl.

The Fighter

In this film, Wahlberg once again showed his affinity for starring in sports movies. Playing the brother of Christian Bale, he proved his mettle once again.

Boogie Nights

For some, Boogie Nights is the ultimate Mark Wahlberg film. In his starring role as rookie porn star Dirk Diggler, Wahlberg served up both laughs and drama. Director Paul Thomas Anderson, meanwhile, proved that he was a heavy hitter in Hollywood.

Logan Sekulow is a producer and director who’s known for relaunching Laugh-O-Gram studios.

5 Tips For Parents Helping Their Child Pursue An Acting Career

5 Tips For Parents Helping Their Child Pursue An Acting Career

Being the parent of a child attempting to pursue a career in acting can be stressful and fraught with worry. The business can be cutthroat, and as a parent you want the best for your child at all times. Parents of child actors are often times juggling many different responsibilities and once, trying to stay on top of work, family and the child’s progress as an actor.

It can easily become overwhelming or discouraging. However, the following five tips can help take some of the stress out of parenting a child actor and lead to a healthier, happier and more successful family.

Protect Your Child

Take steps to make sure your child is always in a safe situation and that your family isn’t exposed to risk.

Some safety tips include never posting your home address when responding to any online casting boards, making sure that any acting-related professionals interacting with your child have a Child Performer Services Permit, and remaining within constant sight and/or sound of your child while you’re on a set.

Never Get Too Wrapped Up In Events Beyond Your Control

The acting world is tough, and there’s much you wish you could control but won’t be able to. Any given audition or role may or may not go your way. Learn to move on to the next one regardless of your conviction that your child might have been perfect. Luck plays a big part in the world of acting, and there’s nothing you can do about that.

Monitor The Rest of Your Family

It can be easy to focus primarily on your child pursuing the acting career, but don’t forget the rest of your family. If you have a significant other, check in with them at regular intervals to make sure that they’re feeling good with your decisions regarding your child’s acting career.

Also, make an extra special effort to connect with any other siblings. It can be easy for them to have feelings of inadequacy or neglect when comparing themselves to their child actor sibling.

Keep A Grip On Your Finances

Far too often, parents of child actors invest too much of their money into pursuing the dream, leading to major financial problems and strain in the family. Right at the onset, set realistic limits for spending on pursuing your child’s acting career, and never break those limits.

Support Your Child Emotionally

The process of auditioning for and either getting or not getting a part can be a strongly emotional experience, and this can especially affect a child. During good times and bad, make an effort to be a rock for your child to lean on.

When your child fails to receive a part, channel any feelings of personal unhappiness or anger and give your child needed perspective. And the same goes for when your child does get a part – keep an even keel to teach your child that true happiness exists outside of the validation coming from outside sources.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

7 of The Best Movies Ever Filmed In Pittsburgh

7 of The Best Movies Ever Filmed In Pittsburgh

Dozens of movies have been filmed in or around Pittsburgh over the decades. While some were awful, others earned Academy Awards. The coolest movies, however, were those that both earned critical or popular acclaim and showcased various features or attractions within Pittsburgh. Consider the following seven examples:

Flashdance (1983)

“Flashdance” was an admittedly silly romantic comedy about a beautiful young woman who worked in a steel mill during the day and danced at a bar at night while hoping to somehow earn a slot in a dance conservatory. In addition to being set in Pittsburgh, the movie also featured Vic Vianca, a Pittsburgh traffic cop known for his flamboyant ways of directing traffic.

Night of The Living Dead (1968)

Considered one of the greatest horror movies ever made, George Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead” introduced people to the fast-moving and predatory zombies that later inspired shows like “The Walking Dead.” It also features shots of the Evans City Cemetery in Butler County that are among the most telegenic ever.

Dawn of The Dead (1978)

Made a decade after “Night,” most of this sequel was shot at the Monroeville Mall. Romero killed two birds with one stone by making a zombie movie that also satirized mindless consumerism.

Adventureland (2009)

“Adventureland” is a romantic comedy set in 1987 that stars Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart. Eisenberg plays a recent college grad with big plans that get derailed by money troubles. He thus has to take a job at the titular Adventureland, which is really Kennywood, an amusement park just eight miles southeast of Pittsburgh. Kennywood, which opened in 1898, boasts rides that date as far back as 1920 along with more modern attractions.

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

In contrast to the first two movies in “The Dark Knight Trilogy,” which were shot mainly in England, parts of “The Dark Knight Rises” were set in Pittsburgh,including the sequence where the evil Bane sets off a series of bombs that destroy parts of the city, including Gotham Stadium, which is really Heinz Field. Hines Ward, who had played for the Pittsburgh Steelers in real life, had a cameo as a football player outrunning the explosions. Pittsburgh residents can also spot various streets, plus the Carnegie Mellon University Software Science Institute and the Carnegie Institute, which are both in Oakland.

Silence of The Lambs (1991)

“Silence of the Lambs” bagged several Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress and is one of the few horror films to earn such accolades. It also features such Pittsburgh landmarks as the county jail, the Allegheny Courthouse, Oakland’s Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Mall, and Canonsburg’s Western Center. The last has since been demolished.

Striking Distance (1993)

The action thriller “Striking Distance” was set entirely in Pittsburgh; in fact, an early title for the film was “Three Rivers,” which referred to the fact that Pittsburgh sits at the junction of the Ohio, Monongahela, and Allegheny Rivers. Bruce Willis and Sarah Jessica Parker play a pair of cops pursuing a serial killer. The film features such Pittsburgh landmarks as Mt. Washington, Monongahela, and Point State Park.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

5 Directing Tips for Actors

5 Directing Tips for Actors

Though they love performing, plenty of actors dream about getting a chance to call the shots. The idea of directing appeals to actors who want to use their talents to guide and inspire either. Having the motivation to direct isn’t enough, however. You need to understand what it takes to be a quality director. Here are five directing tips for actors.

Learn To Lead

On a set, directors can be considered leaders. While collaboration is a must for a production to run smoothly, there needs to be proper delegation. As a director, you need to know how to guide your team. Make a clear outline of things like the schedule and other requirements for the production. Explain to your cast and crew the importance of each element. There will be more confidence in the production if you show you can be a valuable captain.

Be Polite

Directors need to display authority, but they also need to demonstrate humility. Nobody is a fan of the director who is constantly barking orders, and doing so will only spoil your relationships. You should be firm but also respectful. If someone does something well, they should be complimented. If they’re doing something poorly, they should be corrected but not reprimanded. You want your set to be an environment in which people feel encouraged, not discouraged.

Be Clear About Your Goals

Your cast can have trouble if you aren’t being specific. As an actor, you’ve been guided by the strength of your director. Now, it’s your turn to do the same. Let your cast know exactly what you want from them. Don’t close yourself off to suggestions from them, but do give them something to work with early on. The best directors are ones who understand the importance of a vision.

Communicate With Your Cast

If a cast member is having trouble with a certain part or scene, learn to better understand their frustration. Sit down with each of them and discuss what kinds of issues they’ve been having. You’ll hopefully better understand through these one-on-one chats. This is your opportunity to be a mentor for your cast. They’ll realize how much potential is inside them, and you’ll realize how much you have to offer as a teacher.

Observe Other Directors

Observation is at the heart of learning any skill. You might like to think of yourself as a complete self-starter. However, we all need a bit of help to become great. Before you start directing, watch others direct. Notice how they command a set and gain respect through their professionalism. Do your best to emulate this.

By taking these directing tips to heart, you can make the experience so much better for your cast and crew. It can take some time to get used to, but just like with acting, you’ll improve with practice. Have faith in your abilities and don’t be afraid to ask for help. You have too much creativity to let any of it go to waste.

Logan Sekulow is a producer and director who’s known for relaunching Laugh-O-Gram studios.

The Top 7 Best Dog Movies of The 1990’s

The Top 7 Best Dog Movies of The 1990's

If you are a dog lover, you probably watch most of the dog movies that you come across. The 1990s were a period when there were a lot of good dog movies coming to the screen. Seven of the dog movies of the 90s are worth watching again and again.

Balto

Balto is an animated film that is based on the true story of the dog teams that delivered the lifesaving vaccine that was needed to stem the diphtheria outbreak occurring in Nome, Alaska in 1925. Balto is a wolf-dog that has to come to the rescue when the average sled dog just won’t do.

101 Dalmatians

This movie is a live-action version of the classic animated film. The dogs in the movie are very cute, but they don’t turn out to be the best part of the film. Glenn Close turns in a great performance as Cruella de Vil.

Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey

This film is a remake of a film from the 1960s. In this version, the animals talk. A golden retriever, a cat and a large bulldog must find their way back to their family. Voice work is provided by Sally Field, Michael J. Fox and Don Ameche.

Air Bud

This is the movie that started the “Air Bud” franchise of films. This is the best of the lot. This film stars the original dog who gained fame before the film for being able to shoot baskets. It is a story about a boy and a dog who need each other, and they become more than they were through their new relationship.

Beethoven

This is another movie that has spawned a number of sequels. Beethoven is the story of a massive St. Bernard that causes mayhem in the life of the family he comes to live with. Charles Grodin puts in a humorous performance as the father of the family, and Dean Jones plays an evil veterinarian out to get Beethoven.

Lassie

There have been many movies and television programs starring Lassie, but this movie from the 1990s is a little bit different. In this film, Lassie helps a troubled boy cope with the death of his mother, and Lassie help the boy’s family keep the family farm when sinister neighbors try to pry it away.

Shiloh

Shiloh is the story of an abused beagle that comes into the life of a boy named Marty. Shiloh’s owner wants the dog back, and the movie deals with how Marty and Shiloh can find the way back to one another.

These seven movies are sure to please children and adults. They are well worth viewing on family movie night.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

The Top 5 Performances of Denzel Washington’s Acting Career

The Top 5 Performances of Denzel Washington’s Acting Career

Denzel Washington is one of the most well-known actors working in Hollywood today. In his career, Washington has won two Academy Awards, a Tony Award, and three Golden Globes, and been nominated for dozens of other distinctions. In this article, we’ll look at some of the most important roles Washington has played in his career, analyzing why each one is so memorable.

Glory

Washington won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in the 1989 Civil War epic Glory, his first Academy Award win. In the film, Washington plays Private Silas Tripp, a soldier in the famed 54th Massachusetts, the first black regiment in the history of the United States Army. In one of the most stirring scenes in the film, Washington’s Private Tripp is punished for being absent without leave by being flogged by one of the regiments white soldiers. In an act of defiance, Tripp spits on the ground as a single tear rolls down his cheek.

Malcolm X

Directed by Spike Lee, 1992’s Malcolm X is regarded as the most iconic performance of Washington’s career. In the film, Washington plays the fiery civil rights leader. By far the most important part of Washington’s performance is how he shows the evolution of Malcolm X’s idea on race relations. After a trip to Mecca, Malcolm X preaches racial harmony, with the film showing the importance of the Muslim religion in Malcolm X’s change of heart. Washington was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance, losing to Al Pacino. Audiences were shocked by the results of the ceremony, with Lee claiming that Washington was “robbed” of the honor.

Training Day

2004’s Training Day saw Washington win the Academy Award for Best Actor. In the film, Washington plays Alonzo Harris, a corrupt LAPD narcotics detective. As Harris and his partner explore the gangland culture of the city, Harris’ corruption gets the better of him as the whole world witnesses his fall from grace. Training Day is by far one of the most important movies in Washington’s filmography. Not only did he win his second Academy Award for the film, it also shows his versatility as an actor. Known for playing good guy roles, Washington’s role as a corrupt police officer showed how he could play complex characters.

The Hurricane

The Hurricane saw Washington portray Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, a boxer wrongfully convicted of triple murder. The film excels as Washington shows a man come to accept his unjust fate. In one of the more difficult moments of the film, Carter declares, “I’m dead. Just bury me.” Receiving universal acclaim, Washington was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for his work.

He Got Game

Washington once again joined with Spike Lee for 1998’s He Got Game. Washington portrays Jake Shuttlesworth, a man imprisoned for killing his wife. The film centers around Jake trying to convince his son, Jesus, a top high school basketball player, to accept a position at the state governor’s alma mater. In exchange for getting his son to play for the governor’s school, Jake will get a reduced sentence. An underappreciated film, Washington’s performance shines through as he is one of the few established actors in the movie.

Logan Sekulow is a producer and director who’s known for relaunching Laugh-O-Gram studios.

7 Must Read Books For Aspiring Actors

7 Must Read Books For Aspiring Actors

If you are an aspiring actor, but are unable to take training lessons, reading about the art form is a great alternative. There are many books currently available to help aspiring actors develop their craft. Here is a look at several books that can help aspiring actors achieve their dreams.

Respect For Acting (Uta Hagen)

For many years, Uta Hagen was asked if she would be interested in writing a book. When the time was right, Hagen accepted and the result is Respect for Acting. In the book, Hagen talks about her struggles with different acting techniques. The book has been used as a textbook for many acting classes. Hagen uses examples to help guide readers through different acting scenarios such as talking to the audience and continuing to find passion in their work. Hagen relies on using substitution to help shape the actions of the character that the actor is portraying.

An Actor Prepares (Constantin Stanislavski)

An Actor Prepares is one of the most famous acting training books of all time. The book stimulates the diary of a student named Kostya during their training in Stanislavski’s famous system. Kostya has no experience in acting. Stanislavski teaches both the reader and Kostya the system through different examples. Stanislavski’s system strives to help actors master their craft while finding their creativity and imagination. Readers will learn about emotion memory, the subconscious mind, and the unbroken line, among other acting skills.

Audition (Michael Shurtleff)

Michael Shurtleff is a famous casting director who helped cast for The Sound of Music, Chicago, and Jesus Christ Superstar. Audition offers insight into how an audition is evaluated. Actors can learn important information about how to deal with the audition site, room relationships, and their peers.

The Actor And The Target (Declan Donnellan)

Declan Donnellan says that acting is a mechanism for development and survival. The Actor and The Target is unique because it is written from a director’s perspective. Actors can learn how to deal with their fears and show the World their talent. The book has been publicly endorsed by Alan Rickman and Joseph Fiennes.

A Life In Parts (Bryan Cranston)

A Life In Parts is the autobiography of Emmy and Tony award winning actor Bryan Cranston. Cranston re-tales the story of his troubled childhood and how he lost, then re-found his love of acting.

In-Depth Acting (Dee Cannon)

Dee Cannon is a full time freelance acting coach. In-Depth Acting helps guide readers through the Stanislavski technique. Cannon helps readers learn about rehearsal guidelines, how to prepare for different auditions, and how to develop a multi-dimensional character. Cannon also provides actors with different preparation exercises.

True And False: Heresy And Common Sense For The Actor (David Mamet)

Pulitzer prize winning playwright and director David Mamet helps actors learn how to judge a role and figure out if its the right fit for them. Mamet advises actors to focus on a few basic principles.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

The 10 Greatest Special Effects Movies of All Time

The 10 Greatest Special Effects Movies of All Time

Every few months, not often enough, a film is released with visual special effects so stunning that they stop us cold, grab our attention, and set our imaginations on fire. Sometimes the effects pull the worlds within the movie apart with grand explosions and monumental shifts. At other times, the subtle artistry of the effects isn’t immediately obvious to the viewer.

One thing the 10 films on this list have in common is the masterful use of CGI and practical effects to create scenes so realistic and life-like that we never forget them.

A Trip To The Moon (1902)

Cinema hadn’t been around for a decade when filmmaker Georges Méliès began creating amazing effects. He dazzled his audience with simple techniques that produced astonishing transitions and transformations. He was among the first to discover that when different scenes were tied together, the human eye would fill in the gaps. His amazing illusions were the first generation of cinematic special effects.

The Wizard Of Oz (1939)

Using four different flavors of gelatin powder on horses, a facsimile of a twister, and a sharp shift from sepia tones to amazing Technicolor, the musical adaptation of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was MGM’s most expensive film production at the time. Eventually, the costly effects paid for themselves and allegedly, the entrepreneurial minds that created them had no regrets.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

Stanley Kubrick’s sci-fi classic made space travel look amazingly authentic in 1968. Fifty years later, the film still impresses with the awe-inspiring surrealism of its final scenes.

Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991)

The sequel to James Cameron’s career-launching The Terminator came along at a time when digital effects were in their infancy. Featuring a CGI shapeshifter as its primary villain, the body-morphing techniques used in this film kept copycats busy for several years.

Jurassic Park (1993)

Steven Spielberg kicked off what many see as the beginning of the computer era in special effects with Jurassic Park. A perfect blend of CGI and practical effects, the journey into the return of the dinosaurs was so realistic that audiences were dazzled and terrified at the same time.

Forrest Gump (1994)

Aside from placing the film’s titular character in several huge historical moments, it also convinced us that Gary Sinise’s Lt. Dan was a genuine double-amputee from the Vietnam era.

Pan’s Labyrinth (1996)

Guillermo Del Toro’s dark nightmare of a tale featured contortionist Doug Jones as two characters: the faceless monster Pale man and the bizarrely touching Faun. It featured the perfect blending of effects and sublime acting.

The Matrix (1999)

In a feast for the eyes that combined the best techniques of cinema and video games at the time, the Wachowski brothers developed the slow-motion tracking method that utilized complex multi-camera rigs for the truly unique shots used in the film.

Avatar (2009)

In this film, James Cameron created a world of stunning 3D digital characters that are among the very best of the era of computer effects. Three more Avatar films are planned to create a franchise.

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes (2014)

Using innovative special effects, the franchise hero Caesar, brought to life by actor Andy Serkis, and his cohorts are polished, technical wonders that offer so many realistic nuances that it’s easy to get lost in the suspension of disbelief.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

5 Skills That Separate Novice Actors From Professionals

5 Skills That Separate Novice Actors From Professionals

When you are trying to make it in the acting business, it is all about the audition. When you go in for a part, it is important that you look like a professional, even if you have never landed a part before. If you can blow the casting director away with a stellar performance and a professional demeanor, you are sure to get the part. Read on for five skills that separate novice actors from professionals.

Make Decisions

When you are reading for a part, you likely will not get the entire script. You will probably only get a small section. It may be difficult to know a lot about your character, so the best option is to make a choice and go with it. Glean what you can about the character, and fill in the blanks of what you don’t know. Casting directors will be more impressed if you play a well-developed character rather than trying to be too broad.

Choose a Scene That Lets You Be Active

You may be tempted to choose a monologue to really show off your acting chops, but you will be better served by a scene that shows some action. A character’s inner musings does not really give you a chance to show the casting director just what you can do. Choose a scene that allows you to move and shows your character in some sort of proactive position. This will allow you to show your range and prove that you are perfect for the part.

Don’t Forget to Act When You Are Not Speaking

One of the biggest factors that separates novice actors from professionals is what goes on between the actor’s lines of dialogue. If you only focus on what you are saying or what you are going to say next, casting directors will be reluctant to hire you. Remember that a big part of acting is reacting, and what you do when you are not speaking is just as important. Make sure to listen and react to other lines and situations.

Remember the Before and After

You may only be acting out a small scene, but you must remember that it is part of a larger work. Make sure to put your scene in the context of the rest of the work. When you start the scene, you should know where the character is mentally before the scene begins. The same goes for the ending. Even after you have spoken your last line, try to remain in character for a few moments more, signifying what your character would do next.

Be Confident

If you haven’t been on many auditions, you may be a bundle of nerves. If you let those nerves get to you, your audition is not going to go well. You must appear confident, even if you do not feel like it. However, you do not want to go too far and seem cocky. Casting directors want actors who are secure with themselves, but not those who seem like their egos will be an issue.

Logan Sekulow is a renowned producer and director.

The Top 10 Best Shark Movies of All Time

The Top 10 Best Shark Movies of All Time

Long before global warming menaced the public on the big screen, there were sharks. Big and bad with flesh-ripping teeth and huge appetites, they swim to the tune of ominous music and stoke the primal fears that make watching these ultimate monster movies so much fun. Grab some popcorn and have a seat — these are the top ten you have to see.

Sharknado

In the tradition of movies like Lake Placid that we love to watch just to hear Betty White swear, a couple of drinks and a freak storm dropping sharks on Los Angeles is undeniable fun.

Open Water

Based on a true story of a couple trying to rekindle their romance with a scuba adventure, this low budget thriller has nothing special to offer but gut-gripping, sleep-defying fear. Watch it in the morning.

The Shallows

Blake Lively stars in this campy woman versus shark tale that’s both funny and futile on a personal level. It doesn’t have much to offer, but you’ll feel better about your life after.

The Reef

With water, blood and preppies demonstrating why they shouldn’t be given the keys to a yacht, The Reef takes itself way too seriously, but is still worth the ride.

Deep Blue Sea

This is the cruel and usual scientist-makes-breeding-blunder story that just won’t go away. Check your brain at the door and just revel in the blood and guts.

47 Meters Down

Mandy Moore and Clair Holt try to avoid being lunch in this low-budget flick. The ideas are high octane, but the execution isn’t. Still, it’s a great excuse to mow through a bucket of popcorn.

Bait

It’s Sharknado meets Lost as a group of tsunami survivors become part of the meat counter at a flooded grocery store. It’s embarrassingly cliché and utterly devoid of terror, but it’s shamelessly funny and won’t keep you up at night.

Ghost Shark

If you harbor any high school angst and want to see the kids you hated get shredded like pulled pork for sandwiches, it’s your turn. The severed body parts layered between the sexual innuendos is the foundation for a parade of endless horror movie stereotypes that like a train wreck, can’t help but hold your attention.

Mega Shark VS. Giant Octopus

If you wondered what Debbie Gibson did after her 80’s hits stopped generating revenue, she changed her named to Deborah and made a film so bad that it’s sure to be a bonding moment with someone at the asylum.

Jaws

This Spielberg-fueled nightmare is still the king of the hill after more than four decades. The cast was average and by today’s standards, so was the shark, but the simplicity of this man versus Great White story and directing second only to Hitchcock was enough to scare a whole generation out of the water. It’s the benchmark against which all other monster movies are measured.

Logan Sekulow is a producer and director who’s known for relaunching Laugh-O-Gram studios.