The Handmaid’s Tale sequel on way
Margaret Atwood talks about her motivation and the need for activism in support of women
Alessia Cara shares Growing Pains in song
NEW YORK—One day Alessia Cara got a request from a friend: write a song about my breakup.
“He was like, ‘Listen, I’m not a songwriter, I’m not good at writing. Could you maybe one day … write a song about somebody falling out of love with you?’ ”
The concept had been in the back of Cara’s mind and she took a stab at her friend’s wish at the studio. In 10 minutes, she birthed “Out of Love,” an airy, slow and personally deep song.
“I played it for my friend and he got very emotional and he was like, ‘Thank you!’ And he actually got back together with the girl after that song. It’s a magic song.”
Cara said it was the first song she’s written from someone else’s perspective. But she said it was easy to pull from her own experiences — and pain — to relate.
You’ll be able to hear about that on her new album, from her own breakup to learning how to be alone to — simply Alessia Cara had “a lot of different feelings … a lot of which had to do with some sort of pain.” She opens up in her new album Growing Pains. VANCOUVER—Shelley Thompson, known for playing Barbara Lahey in the Canadian comedy series Trailer Park Boys, plans to shoot her debut feature film after winning an award from Women In the Director’s Chair.
On Friday, the mentorship program announced the actress put — growing up.
“I was 18 when I first started in the industry; it’s hard enough to figure yourself out at that age, but then to figure yourself out in front of many people with so many eyes on you and ears on you is very challenging,” the 22-year-old said. “That was causing a lot of strange dissonance.” and short filmmaker has won its 2018 WIDC Feature Film Award, which is designed to encourage more feature films directed by women.
The prize, presented at the Whistler Film Festival, comes with support for the film’s production and post-production valued at up to $200,000.
WIDC says Thompson will use the award to make the drama Dawn, Her Dad & the Tractor, about a young transgender woman who reconnects with her estranged father on the family farm after LOS ANGELES—It was the news that book lovers had been anticipating for a very long time: the mother’s death.
Terry Greenlaw of Picture Plant will produce the film, which will be set and shot in Nova Scotia.
Thompson, who is based in Dartmouth, N.S., says the story is “an extremely personal one” to her and her family.
“As the parent of a young trans man, I’ve learned so much about the challenges trans people face as they struggle for acceptance and inclusion, especially in a political climate that can seek to devalue or erase them,” the Gemini Award winner said in Margaret Atwood is writing a sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale.
Expected in September 2019, The Testaments is set 15 years after the protagonist’s final scene in the original book and is narrated by three female characters.
An informed expert on dystopian, patriarchal societies, a statement.
“With the incredible support of the WIDC and the award sponsors, my hope is that this story will encourage what I’ve been privy to in my family: the coming together of family and community to value, advocate for and celebrate trans individuals as they journey to their most authentic selves.”
Thompson has a slew of acting credits, including the 2017 film The Child Remains and the 1990s TV series Mike & Angelo, and has directed three shorts. the prolific Canadian author of Alias Grace and the MaddAddam trilogy will be honoured on Monday by leading women’s rights organization Equality Now. Atwood, 79, talks about the sequel and writing work that inspires readers to take action. The interview has been condensed.
Congratulations on being honoured by Equality Now.
Yes, I’m being honoured but really, I’m helping them to raise money. They fight for women’s rights and that’s the kind of feminist I am. They’re based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which everyone should go back and read because they’ve forgotten about it. They are real activists, that’s what they do every day. I’m not a real activist. The difference between them and me is that I’m just a person who doesn’t have a job, so people like me have the privilege of getting to mouth off because nobody can fire them.
The Handmaid’s Tale has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity. Why write a sequel?
That’s easy to answer. No. 1, it’s fun. But that’s a very frivolous answer. No. 2, I’ve been asked these questions by readers for 35 years. “Oh, come on, Margaret!”
So it’s time to address some of the requests. It’s not a continuation that starts five minutes after the book ends and then I tell you what happens next. It takes place 15 years after the book ends. I’ve had the idea over the past five years or so. I’m almost finished with it.
You said it’s inspired by “the world we’ve been living in.” What did you mean?
The news has become so much more extreme. What about these people in Ohio that are saying motherhood should be mandatory? They haven’t done it yet, they’re talking about it. But when people talk about things like that, being the age I am, I’m remembering that Hitler said it all in Mein Kampf and then he did it. If they had the power, they would do it. These ideas have been tried before. What I’m fixated on now, of course, like all Canadians, is we’ve got our faces jammed up against the plate-glass window, looking into your country.
Trailer Park Boys actress to direct her first feature film
FULL Q&A AT THE STAR.COM/ ENTERTAINMENT
Author Margaret Atwood will be honoured on Monday by leading women’s rights organization Equality Now. Shelley Thompson, who played Barbara Lahey in Trailer Park Boys, will shoot her debut feature with award money from Women In the Director’s Chair.