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Movies: Past, present and future

Category: The Last Song

Live chat with 'The Lucky One's' Nicholas Sparks on Oct. 13

October 7, 2011 |  6:30 am

Live chat with Nicholas Sparks

Nicholas Sparks, whose book "The Lucky One" is getting the big-screen treatment in April, will be joining us for a live online chat on Thursday, Oct. 13, starting at 10 a.m. PDT.

Sparks is a popular and prolific author with more than a dozen novels to his name, the latest of which, "The Best of Me," hits shelves Oct. 11. His previous titles include "The Notebook," "A Walk to Remember," "Dear John" and "The Last Song." The upcoming adaptation of "The Lucky One," starring Zac Efron as a Marine trying to find a mystery woman who he believes was his good luck charm during the war in Iraq, is Sparks' seventh book to be made into a movie.

Warner Bros. has also bought film rights to "The Best of Me," a tear-inducing tale of former high school sweethearts who reunite 25 years later. Sparks is co-producing the movie with Denise DiNovi, who produced "The Lucky One," and filming is scheduled to start in 2012.

To schedule a reminder for the chat, just fill out the form below. And be sure to join us Thursday.


Zac Efron's (halting) reinvention

Nicholas Sparks has to be feeling lucky

What's it really like working with Miley Cyrus? Just ask Julie Anne Robinson

— Noelene Clark

Photo: Nicholas Sparks in 2010. Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times.

What's it really like working with Miley Cyrus? Just ask Julie Anne Robinson

March 30, 2010 |  6:15 pm

JAR photos 003 Many tweens across the nation eagerly await Miley Cyrus' every move, twittering about the starlet's latest song or boyfriend. But Julie Anne Robinson, who directed Cyrus' first dramatic role in "The Last Song," barely knew who the young actress was before the two met on set.

"I was sort of dimly aware of her," admitted Robinson, who used to live in England, where Cyrus is not as popular as she is stateside.

These days, however, Robinson is acutely aware of Cyrus' star power: The director's feature debut, which was written specifically for Cyrus by modern romance master Nicholas Sparks, is likely to make $10 million at the box office on its opening day alone.

"The Last Song," which hits theaters Wednesday, stars Cyrus as a rebellious teenage girl who falls in love with a hunky local (Liam Hemsworth) while spending the summer at the beach house of her father (Greg Kinnear). 

The story is a far cry from some of the projects on Robinson's resume, which include work on productions at the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal Court and the Royal National Theatre in London. She later went on to work alongside directors Stephen Daldry and Sam Mendes before landing a spot in the BBC director's training course. But it was her work on the BBC miniseries "Coming Down the Mountain" -- a 90-minute film about two teenage boys, one of whom has Down syndrome -- that got her noticed by Disney. 

Before the film's release, Robinson took a few minutes to chat about how to avoid making a Nicholas Sparks story trite and what it's really like to work with Miley Cyrus. 

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