Vancouver, on Canada's West Coast, is a vibrant, multicultural city surrounded by magnificent scenery of mountains and ocean. The city regularly tops those global charts of cities with "Best Quality of Life" for its easy-going and comfortable lifestyle. The flipside to this picture-postcard perfect image is that of Vancouver's downtown Eastside, the poorest neighbourhood in Canada and a place ravaged by drugs and decay.
"I'm 76 years old and I'm worn out!" exclaims a boisterous James Garner as he sits down to chat about his co-starring role in the sweeping romantic drama The Notebook.
Wearing his trademark, oversized tinted glasses, and supporting himself with a cane that his wife recently gave him, the actor is surprised when suggested that many young women still swoon around him on a movie set.
"I've never made a move on anybody," Garner says, emphatically.
They should make a film about Michael Moore's battle to get his latest documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 distributed in the States. What is it about the subject matter that caused financial backers like Mel Gibson's Icon Productions to get cold feet? Why did Disney want to block its release?
Coogan is sitting comfortably in the confines of a Los Angeles hotel room, promoting his co-starring role in this very updated version of Jules Verne's Around the World in 80 Days. Well, perhaps it would be more accurate to refer to this version of the classic tale as Jackie Chan's take on the tale first filmed in the fifties as a David Niven movie.
Coogan doesn't seem to mind being second banana to Chan, nor was he worried about following in the footsteps of some of Chan's previous Hollywood buddies.
There is a lot to be said for being in the right place at the right time. Twenty-five-year-old, Jehane Noujaim, didn't even have to leave her home for the inspiration for her first documentary.
She was sharing a flat with a twentysomething entrepreneur, Kaleil Isaza Tuzman, who had chucked in the day job at Goldman Sachs to kick off an ambitious multi-million dollar business called GovWorks.com.
The idea behind GovWorks.com was to enable people to do business with local government - like paying taxes and parking tickets - online.
Paul Fischer: What was the added challenge of doing Spider-Man 2?
Sam Raimi: Well, it was in trying to figure out what the audience wanted to see... I tried to concentrate the story and the writers on focusing on the relationships between Tobey Maguire's character and Kirsten Dunst's character and James Franco's character. And Peter's relationship with his aunt. These are the things that I thought the audience would be interested in most.
Last week organisers from film co-operatives, media arts societies and festivals from across Canada converged on Vancouver to talk about, among other things, the future of organisations like themselves.
"Rim Shots", the Independent Media Arts Alliance's annual general meeting, was more than a bout of collective navel-gazing, it was a rare opportunity for organisers from film and video access centres across five time zones to discuss their policy, problems, hopes and fears, face to face with their peers.
Los Angeles Vin Diesel arrives at the end of a long day of interviews looking as if he had been literally hit by a truck. Collapsing on the floor, he apologises in advance if he appears somewhat drunk. Whatever one's opinion of Diesel, and opinions certainly do vary, it is easy enough to be smitten by the man's ease of charm, and vibrant sense of humour.
Are your ears burning? joked Adobe's Colin Smith, after finishing his whirlwind demonstration of the new features in Video Collection 2.5, just released this week.
It's the world premiere of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Robbie Coltrane is knackered.
"I'd forgotten how exhausting these things are," says Coltrane, referring to the massive press junket process that goes along with a Harry Potter blockbuster.
"It's really like being a liar, you know, and you have to be careful when you're a liar. You ask yourself, 'Have I spoken about this to these people before, and am I going to get 40 eyes going: we've heard this big boy?'"