PSN Staying Free

Those worried that with the rapid growth of PlayStation users thanks to some recent major releases (Metal Gear we’re looking at you) that Sony may start charging for use of PSN need not be afraid. PSN Head Eric Lempel has these calming words for you:

The fact that it’s free is nice for consumers who want to try out the online experience, those who may be new to it and may not be ready to commit to spending dollars, and that’s a really good message for us.

With the slowly improving experience, PSN may reach the feature set of Xbox Live soon enough (cross-game voice chat Sony, cross-game voice chat). Then, Microsoft will have a tough time explaining why we’re still paying for the service.

Mullan considers leaving Scotland for Hollywood; Top actor-director may go west

The Herald February 1, 2003 | Phil Miller; Arts Correspondent PETER Mullan, the top actor, writer and director, is considering leaving Scotland and moving to Hollywood to further his film career.

Mullan, who this month releases his controversial movie The Magdalene Sisters in Britain, is one of the country’s leading film makers and last night movie bosses said they would be disappointed if he chose to pursue his acclaimed career in the United States.

In an interview, published in today’s Herald Magazine, Mullan says his flights to the US are becoming more frequent.

His next project is for a “big and mythic” movie set in the United States and he says that now might be the time to establish himself at the heart of the film business on the west coast of the US. go to site last night movie

The most high profile celebrity supporter of Tommy Sheridan’s Scottish Socialist party, Mullan was yesterday filming a party political broadcast for the forthcoming Scottish Parliament election campaign.

However, he has admitted that, with his international profile raised even further by a distribution deal with the powerful Miramax organisation for The Magdalene Sisters, his stock in Hollywood is higher than ever and has discussed moving to the US with his family.

Mullan says: “We’ve seriously talked over moving to America. The next script is set in the States . . . and if it got the green light then I couldn’t leave the bairns, we’ll all have to move.” He says Hollywood is like the armed fortress of the Death Star in the Star Wars movies, and to “stir it up” he will have to be inside it “like Luke Skywalker”.

Mullan, 43, whose latest film, about the abuse of young women in Catholic homes in Ireland, was funded by Scottish Screen, added: “Anyway, it’s time to step aside here, and let others have a go at public funding. this web site last night movie

“There’s a lot of talent coming through in Scotland, so they need the money more than me now.” Steve McIntyre, the chief executive of Scottish Screen, said he would be dismayed if Mullan decided to move to Hollywood.

The star has made his name in a series of Scottish productions, starring in Ken Loach’s My Name is Joe, for which he won the Best Actor award at Cannes, and as the director of Orphans. He made his name as an actor in Trainspotting and had a small role in Braveheart.

Mr McIntyre said: “We would be disappointed to lose one of the most interesting, talented and recognised artists and film makers in Scotland.

“However, only he can decide what to do and what he feels is best for his own career as a film maker.” In the interview, Mullan criticises Scottish Screen’s interventions in the making of The Magdalene Sisters, describing staff at the agency – which gave around (pounds) 700,000 to the film – as “stupid”.

In particular, he was angered by a suggestion to run titles over a silent stretch of the movie.

Mr McIntyre said: “I have no recollection of suggesting putting titles on the film. We always have lots of discussion with film makers and they are usually the stronger for that.

“We have constantly supported him and we will continue to support him, because he is a major film talent, but it’s disappointing that he has said that.” Mullan has broken box office records in Ireland with The Magdalene Sisters.

The film has been seen by one in 20 of the Irish population and has taken more than (pounds) 630,000 at the Irish box office. Funded by the Irish Film Board and Scottish Screen, it is the most successful non-Hollywood film of the year in Ireland, despite being condemned by Catholic authorities.

It won the Golden Lion for Best Film at the Venice Film Festival and the Discovery Critics Award at the Toronto Film Festival.

Phil Miller; Arts Correspondent