Friday, June 14, 2024

Kristen Stewart: How She Got $500,000 from a Middle East Sheik


Harvey Weinstein hopes so.  At the Los Angeles DGA premiere of the “12-12-12,” Amir Bar-Lev and Charlie Lightening’s terrific insider look at the concert that was held to benefit Hurricane Sandy, also has none other than Sir Paul McCartney as an Executive Producer.  The film features music’s finest, including: Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Billy Joel, Alicia Keys, Dave Grohl, Roger Waters, Eddie Vedder, Chris Martin, Michael Stipe, Adam Sandler, Eric Clapton, Jon Bon Jovi, The Rolling Stones, The Who, Kanye West and more.

Sir Paul ends the show and is shown throughout the film.  In fact his team was filming their own version until Amir and Paul’s team got together at the last minute and joined forces. Harvey told the crowd that, “Paul, whom I spoke to today, is involved in every detail of this movie.  If God willing we ever got an award, Paul and Amir would be up there.”

Harvey then went on to thank Irving Azoff and native New Yorkers MSG’s James Dolan, Clear Channel’s John Sykes, Weinstein’s Victoria Parker and Sir Paul’s longtime manager Scott Roger, all who helped to make the concert  and the film happen.

“I grew up going to Rockaway,” Harvey explained.  “This was so important for all of us to do.  People were in need.”

Harvey then told the story of how Kristen Stewart agreed to meet a Middle Eastern Sheik for a half hour for $500.000. Harvey quipped, “I don’t know if we reported it to the IRS, but who gives a shit.”

I then spoke with the Amir Bar-Lev who told me that, “The film was an editing challenge.  It could have been a nine-hour movie; there was that much happening.  We wanted to keep the cameras moving so that the audience can experience the night in all of its honeycomb splendor.  We wanted it to be a democratic film.  It was New York taking care of itself, so if we didn’t move the camera around and meet roadies, fireman, fans, the people outside, as well as staying onstage, it all came together because of that. ”

How did he wind up making this film?  Amir answers, “I ran into Harvey at a ‘Django Unchained’ event, I had done the ‘The Tillman Story,’ for him.  He told me. ‘You gotta make this movie for me, you gotta be ready in a week!’  Paul McCartney also had the idea to immortalize the event in a film, and to the run up to the concert there were two different films being made. It culminated in a stand off between their crew and our crew and was very acrimonious. At a certain point in this argument, I said, why are we making two films? Why don’t we make one film?  This is crazy, it’s a charity event, and we shouldn’t be fighting over this.  Besides it’s a Beatle.  The guy I was fighting with and I hugged, we then had a production meeting right before the concert and joined forces.  The finished film is a combination of both of our footages.  So all is well.”

“12-12-12” opens in New York and Los Angeles on November 15th.

Leah Sydney
Leah Sydney
Leah Sydney writes from Los Angeles for A seasoned journalist with a long history during the halcyon days of the NY Daily News, Leah is a member of the Critics Choice and Rotten Tomatoes.

Read more

In Other News