• Keep this on your radar: A horror film anthology project, titled XX is in the works. It's a series of shorts directed by women with female leads. Folks on board include Jennifer Lynch, Jen and Sylvia Soska, Mary Harron. [Hollywood Reporter]
“I rarely meet people who tell me what they’re doing.”
When I was 13 years old, I received an award from my eighth grade teacher, in which she predicted my future career as a “comedy screenwriter.” At that time, I had no idea what a screenwriter was. I, of course knew it had to do with filmmaking, but that’s it. Growing up, I had no conception of writing or directing films. It was not a career that people around me talked about or pursued. Soon, that would all change.
Bitch is at Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin, Texas, this weekend! Now in its 8th year, FFFFest (Fx4, to abbrev-loving Austinites) is the only genre-based festival in the country, with stages for comedy, hip hop/electronica, punk/metal, and indie rock. We were last at Auditorium Shores two years ago, and it's good to be back. Read on for our discoveries and recommendations for the rest of the weekend! If you're at the Fest, let us know who you're most excited about in the comments.
This is a big year for musicians who grew up with the Riot Grrrl movement. In this episode, we talk with iconic musicians Kathleen Hanna and JD Samson about their new albums and writer Laina Dawes provides a different perspective with an essay, “Why I was never a riot grrrl.”
I started swing dancing in college as a way to meet people. That quickly led to a swing dancing obsession I still haven't recovered from.
For me, there's something about that nice eight-count beat that really picks me off my feet and cheers me up. So, to counteract the increasingly chilly weather, consistent downpours, and shorter days, I've assembled the cheeriest and most upbeat swing songs I could find. (Swing dancing also led to a significant liking for blues dancing, which may have leaked a bit into this mixtape—I just love Nina Simone too much.) So put on your dancing shoes and give it a listen!
• Another person of color has been shot and killed by a white person after seeking help following a car accident and being "mistaken" for an "intruder." People in Detroit are holding vigils this week for 19-year-old Renisha McBride, who was shot in the back of the head after asking a neighbor for help after a crash. [Slate, Dispatches From the Underclass]
• Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted on and passed the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would federally legislate against job discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and includes provisions to protect trans people for the first time. Now many, including President Obama, are urging the House to consider the bill as well. [Huffington Post]
In the past week, both Marvel and DC announced that they will roll out new female superheroes. And not just token characters, but complex heroes who are both teenage women of color. The announcement of these two new characters gives me some hope that maybe something is getting through to the mainstream comics bigwigs from comics creators and fans who want more diverse and engaging characters.
If you don’t pay attention to the thrilling world of ice hockey, you likely haven’t heard about Semyon Varlamov (above), the star goalie for the Colorado Avalanche hockey team. Last Wednesday, Varlamov turned himself in to Denver police for domestic violence. On more sports fans’ radars is the news this week about Miami Dolphins’ guard Richie Incognito, who is accused of bullying a young teammate so mercilessly with racist and homophobic slurs that the player felt compelled to leave the team.
Both cases highlight the tendency of sports and mainstream media to give athletes a pass for conduct that would be reprehensible in people not worth billions of dollars. But both media and management treated the two cases of abuse very differently. While Incognito’s bullying of a teammate has resulted in a tidal wave of bad PR and administrative punishment, Varlamov’s alleged harassment of his girlfriend has so far resulted in very little comeuppance.