Sam Levinson

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Sam Levinson To Adapt ‘Ohio’ Novel For HBO

Sam Levinson has not missed in his work as of late. Pushing through the unparalleled conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic, Levinson managed to pull together not one, but two Euphoria specials. Then, he worked with Euphoria star Zendaya and John David Washington to make the Netflix film, Malcolm & Marie. Now, he’s turning his attention to yet another project.
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MoviesHollywood Reporter

Writer Roundtable: Aaron Sorkin, Emerald Fennell, Kemp Powers, Radha Blank and Sam Levinson on the Journey to Get Their Stories to Screen

Five top screenwriters — behind the films 'The Trial of the Chicago 7,' 'Promising Young Woman,' 'One Night in Miami'/'Soul,' 'The Forty-Year-Old-Version' and 'Malcolm & Marie' — open up about the struggle and satisfaction of finding their voice and harnessing their power. Ask a collection of celebrated screenwriters if they've...
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Los Angeles Times

Column: ‘Malcolm & Marie’ filmmaker Sam Levinson wanted to start a conversation. Just not this one

Sam Levinson says he wrote and directed “Malcom & Marie” to spark a larger conversation, and in that he has most certainly succeeded. That the conversation it sparked leans heavily on what many consider the myriad reasons to hate “Malcolm & Marie” probably is not what Levinson had in mind. But the fact that even the film’s harshest critics were forced to wade directly into its themes of authenticity, artistic intention and personal responsibility proved the validity of some of its points — while also putting to the test the oft-stated desire of filmmakers to act as a cultural catalyst.
MoviesThe Ringer

A ‘Malcolm & Marie’ Meltdown With John David Washington and Sam Levinson. Plus: ‘The Sound of Music,’ Finally.

Sean and Amanda celebrate the life and work of the late actor Christopher Plummer, including a discussion of his most famous film, The Sound of Music (0:47). Then, Sean is joined by Malcolm & Marie writer-director Sam Levinson and costar John David Washington to discuss their controversial new Netflix film, which was written and produced during the COVID-19 pandemic (59:00).

Sam Levinson on ‘Malcolm & Marie’ and Why They Gave the Crew Financial Co-Ownership on the Movie

With Malcolm & Marie now streaming on Netflix, I recently got to speak with writer-director Sam Levinson about making his black-and-white romantic drama. If you haven’t seen the trailers, the film takes place on the night a filmmaker (John David Washington) and his girlfriend Marie (Zendaya) return from the world premiere of his movie and explores what happens as they wait for the reviews. Featuring extraordinary performances from both Zendaya and Washington, Malcolm & Marie allows both actors to shine in equal measure as we spend the night watching them argue and fight while delivering extended monologues. For more on the film and their performances, you can read Matt Goldberg’s review.

‘Malcolm & Marie’ Director Sam Levinson Has Revealed Who Won The Big Fight, After All

Spoilers for Netflix’s Malcolm & Marie will be found below. It’s safe to say that a lot of people watched Netflix’s Malcolm & Marie, starring Zendaya and John David Washington, over the weekend. We may never know exactly how many people, since Netflix kind-of reveals their own numbers at will, but it’s been sitting at the top of the Most Popular list for days. A lot of critics aren’t wild about the movie because it bashes critics, but I didn’t mind that aspect too much. Sure, I turned down the volume during Malcolm’s longest tirade about how misunderstood he feels by one writer, and he takes himself way too seriously, but in a way, this is also a movie that roasts self-important artists. And the biggest roaster of Malcolm turned out to be Marie. Granted, he dealt a lot of harsh verbal blows to her as well, and the movie felt like one enormously overwrought argument (because that’s what it was) that was exhausting. Yet it also felt slightly therapeutic to watch the knife twist, so to speak.

Sam Levinson Defends Age Gap & Racial Concerns In ‘Malcolm & Marie’

With “Malcolm & Marie” finally available for everyone on Netflix, there is a large number of people watching the highly-anticipated awards contender. And with that, there are new people watching the film and having questions about the way the film came together and potentially problematic issues with the story. Now, writer-director Sam Levinson aims to explain some of those issues and why they don’t really seem applicable to “Malcolm & Marie.”

Sam Levinson and Zendaya Unpack Everything Malcolm & Marie

Back in July, headlines were made when it was revealed that Zendaya and John David Washington filmed a movie in the early months of quarantine. Written and directed by Euphoria creator Sam Levinson, Malcolm & Marie was one of the first major projects to shoot under lockdown, and for a while, it seemed like the unique circumstances of its production would drive the conversation around it. But now that people have had a chance to see the movie, which was released on Netflix last Friday, Levinson’s two-person character study has sparked debate online about everything from the nature of film criticism to the age difference of its two leads.

Sam Levinson Used Malcolm & Marie to Tell His Story, and Viewers Have Thoughts

At the center of Sam Levinson's Malcolm & Marie is a discussion of who the actual inspiration for Malcolm's film is and a rant about the ignorance of critics. In a way, life imitates art, as Malcolm's rant about the "white lady critic from the LA Times" is based on Levinson's own experiences. With Malcolm & Marie, Levinson seemingly voices his own niche frustrations with past experiences through Malcolm rather than using Malcolm's issues with critics to go a step further when discussing critiquing Black art through a white lens.
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Sam Levinson Responds to ‘Malcolm & Marie’ Criticisms: Age Gap, Writing Black Characters, and More

From filming under strict COVID safety protocols last summer to selling the film to Netflix in a blockbuster deal worth a reported $30 million, Sam Levinson’s journey with “Malcolm & Marie” has never stopped making headlines. The relationship drama, starring Zendaya and John David Washington, is now proving to be one of the most critically divisive titles in the awards race. Several criticisms have been lobbied at Levinson since the film started screening last month, from his actors’ age gap to his decision to write a film about two Black characters. The writer-director has been confronting these criticisms head-on in recent interviews with Esquire UK and The Independent.

Director Sam Levinson breaks down the Malcolm & Marie scene that nearly broke him

After several failed attempts, the drama's tense first scene came in just under the wire. Sam Levinson had a clear plan for the opening scene of Malcolm & Marie, in which the title characters — played by John David Washington and Zendaya — return home from a glitzy Hollywood after-party celebrating the premiere of director Malcolm's new movie. Shooting on 35mm film, every movement "would be motivated," Levinson tells EW. No second left unorchestrated. And then production started: "We shoot the first day; everything is out of rhythm. Nothing seemed to be working — the blocking, the movement. Something wasn't clicking."

How Zendaya, John David Washington & Sam Levinson Conjured ‘Malcolm & Marie’ During Covid Lockdown, And Made Sure Their Crew Shared In The Profits

Services to share this page. At a time in which film and television production was on lockdown due to the emerging Coronavirus pandemic, Malcolm & Marie was the rare project heading into production. The $2.5 million indie about a late-night debate between a young couple got made because writer/director Sam Levinson answered Zendaya’s call to write a contained drama that might keep them and their Euphoria crew employed after the HBO drama was shuttered days before shooting a new season. They enlisted John David Washington to co-star and got him and others to invest in a project that has gone on to generate much awards buzz for all three. As the film hits Netflix, Mike Fleming Jr. meets the small team that came together to overcome the odds.

Director Sam Levinson Addresses ‘Malcolm & Marie’ Backlash, Twitter Praises Zendaya & John David Washington’s Performances

Zendaya and John David Washington’s Netflix pandemic passion project Malcolm & Marie, written and directed by Sam Levinson, is finally here. Of course, there is already backlash being directed towards the film. Levinson is quickly addressing it. From the minute the trailer hit Twitter timelines, it was already established that...
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Vogue Magazine

‘They’re Two Snakes in a Jar’: Sam Levinson and Cinematographer Marcell Rév on the Beautiful and Brittle World of Malcolm & Marie

Malcolm & Marie, Sam Levinson’s provocative new drama starring Zendaya and John David Washington, is about a lot of things: an artist’s struggle to be recognized and validated on his terms and not through the filter of racial politics; the fine line between inspiration and appropriation; the (dire) consequences of forgetting to thank your partner in a speech. But it is also, at its core, a movie about the movies. Washington, so memorable in BlacKkKlansman and Tenet, plays a young director riding the high of a successful premiere, and Zendaya, his aspiring-actress, recovering-addict girlfriend. And like so many in that genre, it’s rich with references. There are, within the piece, allusions to Barry Jenkins, Spike Lee, John Singleton, William Wyler, Billy Wilder, and Elaine May, while the use of black-and-white film, and a script centered on a sparring couple, call to mind Mike Nichols ’s * Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?* and Michelangelo Antonioni’s La Notte. (It’s little wonder that Levinson is so well versed in the history of cinema: His father is the director Barry Levinson, of Good Morning, Vietnam; Rain Man; Bugsy; and Wag the Dog fame.)

Sam Levinson Talks ‘Malcolm & Marie,’ The Return Of ‘Euphoria’ & His Filmmaking Father [The Playlist Podcast]

“Malcolm & Marie” is far from your typical film. Not only is it an incredibly intimate black and white drama with a cast list of only two actors and a setting inside a beautiful mansion, “Malcolm & Marie” is one of the first films that entered production during the pandemic last year. And this week, on The Playlist Podcast, we speak to Sam Levinson, the writer-director of “Malcolm & Marie,” as well as the creator of HBO’s award-winning “Euphoria,” about his new film, his hit show, and his legendary father, Barry Levinson.
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The Independent

Sam Levinson: ‘The age difference in Malcolm & Marie is part of its DNA’

Sam Levinson is not a teenager. He’s just really good at writing them. In his critically acclaimed high-school drama Euphoria, the writer-director is careful not to patronise his adolescent characters – nor the actors who play them. During lockdown, Levinson has spoken on the phone with his now Emmy-certified lead Zendaya – whom he affectionately calls “Zee” – almost every other day. They would talk about anything and everything, speculating on when HBO would give the green light to start production back up or whether Levinson would need to rewrite the scripts. Or they’d simply chat about whatever mundane thing...

Zendaya and Sam Levinson: ‘Malcolm and Marie’

This week on The Treatment, Elvis welcomes writer-director Sam Levinson and actress Zendaya, star of Levinson's new film for Netflix "Malcolm and Marie." The film follows a couple for one night as they navigate the ups and downs of their combustible relationship. In their conversation, Levinson talks about subverting gender stereotypes with the roles of Marie, played by Zendaya, and Malcolm, played by John David Washington. Zendaya discusses how her silence in the early part of the film sets up the power dynamics for the rest of the film. And she says that even months after completing the film, she still doesn’t know whose side she’s on.