Boardwalk Empire’s First Season Blu-ray Review is up at BigPictureBigSound

Filed under: Boardwalk Buzz — Tags: , , — Boardwalk Empire @ 11:47 am

Atlantic City, New Jersey was perhaps the single most heavily utilized point of entry for illegal liquor into the United States from Canada, and so much of the riches, the corruption, the violence and the “glory” were centered in this beachside vacation haven. Nelson Johnson revealed the specifics in his book Boardwalk Empire, which also recently completed its second season on HBO.

via Boardwalk Empire The Complete First Season
Blu-ray Review by Chris Chiarella on BigPictureBigSound

Chris Chiarella concludes:  Boardwalk Empire has earned its place among the very best original series ever to grace HBO, which is no small feat, and this Blu-ray box with its solid audio and video makes catching up easy. And the deep, sophisticated extras are so good, they should be illegal.

Big Picture Big Sound was created by a movie buff and an electronics hobbyist who thought the world would somehow be a better place with a Web site dedicated to all things film, HDTV and home theater.

‘Boardwalk Empire’ author to speak at Camden County College

Filed under: Top Stories — Boardwalk Empire @ 5:47 pm

GLOUCESTER TWP.  — The author of the book behind the popular HBO series “Boardwalk Empire” will compare the real Nucky Johnson of Atlantic City history to the fictional Nucky Thompson as portrayed in the series during his second appearance at Camden County College this year.

Two versions of Nucky

Two versions of Nucky

Nelson Johnson will present “Boardwalk Empire, Part II: Nucky Johnson is Back in Town and He Means Business” at 7 p.m. Nov. 29 in Civic Hall, which is inside the Connector Building on the College’s Blackwood Campus. CCC’s Center for Civic Leadership and Responsibility is presenting the event, which will include a question-and-answer session and a book signing.

“The award-winning HBO series ‘Boardwalk Empire’ attracts millions of viewers to a fictional version of Atlantic City fraught with violence and sex, which often embellishes the historical truth,” noted Center for Civic Leadership and Responsibility director John Pesda. “Nelson Johnson, a gifted writer and speaker, will return to Camden County College to set the record straight with a fact-based account of the city and Nucky Johnson’s role.”

Learn more at ‘Boardwalk Empire’ author to speak at Camden County College at

Fact and Fiction in a Tale of Two Nuckys

Filed under: Top Stories — Boardwalk Empire @ 1:20 pm

Kevin Shelly at Galloway Patch put together an excellent article about the differences between HBO’s Nucky Thompson and the real life Nucky Johnson that he is based on.  Nelson Johnson, author of Boardwalk Empire and The Northside, helped shed light on the real historical figure.

Book as Inspiration

Author Nelson Johnson, who literally wrote the book on the real Enoch “Nucky” Johnson, says HBO’s Terence Winter has said the fictionalized character created for the TV version of Boardwalk Empire is 70 percent drawn from Johnson’s 2002 book of the same name.

Two versions of Nucky

Two versions of Nucky

“They are doing their best to do historically accurate fiction,” added Johnson, who is not related to Nucky Johnson. Judge Johnson explained that by “accurate fiction” he meant creating a storyline that captures the essence and possibilities of the Prohibition era in Atlantic City, not necessarily the verifiable details.

The Violence

Physical violence is an aspect of almost every installment of the TV series. And frequently the violence is carried out by either Nucky or one of his closest followers.

That’s not how it really worked in Atlantic City, according to Judge Johnson.

The real violence was the threat of economic ruin—and the security belonging to Nucky’s organization provided. But that’s hard, if not impossible, to show on screen.

Instead of physical violence, the people who crossed Nucky and his organization lost their goverment jobs, they were ostracized, their businesses not patronized, operating licenses were pulled, or they were raided and shutdown by complicit police who were a part of the organization.

Read this and much more at Differences Between Real Nucky Johnson and HBO’s Nucky Thompson Go Beyond the Fictionalized Name – Galloway, NJ Patch.

The Telegraph Reviews Boardwalk Empire by Nelson Johnson

Filed under: Top Stories — Boardwalk Empire @ 12:22 pm
Boardwalk Empire

Boardwalk Empire

It is easy to see why Johnson’s book has become a highly successful TV show, and not just because this paperback edition comes with characters of the HBO adaptation on the front cover. The book is full of compelling anecdotes and characters. From Thomas Edison designing some of the first lighting and landscaping in Atlantic City in 1902 to Louis Kessell, Nucky Johnson’s five-foot-five ‘trunk of a tree’ butler who started the day massaging his boss before ending it by putting him to bed he was too drunk to do it himself. The book ends with Donald Trump and the ‘eighth wonder of the world’: the Taj Mahal.

The book explores interesting connections between the criminal, commercial and political worlds of Atlantic City. Al Capone had a deft justification for his profession as he highlighted society’s double-standards by saying: “Everybody calls me a racketeer I call myself a businessman. When I sell liquor, it’s bootlegging. When my patrons serve it on a silver tray on Lake Shore Drive, it’s hospitality.”

Nucky Johnson’s description of Atlantic City is equally applicable to Nelson Johnson’s book:

We have whiskey, wine, women, song, and slot machines. I won’t deny it and I won’t apologise for it.

via Boardwalk Empire by Nelson Johnson: review – Telegraph.

Nucky Pushes Back via Screen Rant

Filed under: Boardwalk Buzz — Boardwalk Empire @ 11:47 pm

The Emmy award-winning Boardwalk Empire is back and swinging into its second season. With Enoch “Nucky” Thompson’s political career in jeopardy and enemies closing from both sides of the law, he’ll have to seek help from some unexpected sources to survive. Two new clips from HBO show off Nucky’s predicament.

At the conclusion of the season 2 premiere, Nucky Thompson and Chalky White are both resting their laurels in Atlantic City’s jail. Nucky has been arrested on voter fraud in the latest election, while Chalky is facing charges of murder after shooting a KKK member who came to kill him and shut down his illegal distillery. In addition to being pushed from the bottom and the top, Nucky’s former mentor the Commodore is teaming up with his former protégé (and the Commodore’s estranged son) Jimmy Darmody to take over the liquor business in and around Atlantic City.

Read the rest and watch another clip  at Two New ‘Boardwalk Empire’ Clips: Nucky Pushes Back on Screen Rant.

Clothes on Film Interviews Boardwalk Empire’s Costume Team

Filed under: Boardwalk Buzz — Boardwalk Empire @ 9:39 pm

There have been a lot of stories about the costuming for Boardwalk Empire like these:


Just in time for the new season Clothes on Film sat down and interview Emmy nominees John Dunn and Lisa Padovani about what we can expect to see in terms of Boardwalk Empire costuming in season two.

Boardwalk Empire Costume Q&A: John Dunn & Lisa Padovani

On the eve of Boardwalk Empire: Season 2 commencing at HBO, we have had a chat with the show’s costume designers, Emmy nominated John Dunn and Lisa Padovani about what is in store for dandy gangster Nucky Thompson, sourcing vintage dresses and upcoming trends of the 1920s.

Clothes on Film, Chris: What do you have planned for Boardwalk Empire Season 2?

John Dunn: In Season 2 we will be continuing to explore the decade as our characters and their pasts are further revealed. We are also introducing some of the new currents in fashion as the 20′s begin to unfold and our characters’ situations shift. The big trends of the 20′s are still ahead of us but we will begin to set the groundwork.

In addition, our shop has become very adept at building beautiful women’s pieces from scratch at the speed of light. While it is always exciting to find beautiful vintage pieces to use, we also like to create original pieces and the skills of our drapers and stitchers to recreate the period has increased as we progressed through Season 2. We also found some new equipment for our shop. We were, for example, very pleased to locate a vintage faggoting machine which creates a seaming used so prominently for constructing dresses and blouses starting in the late teens and early 20′s.

Read the rest of the Q&A at Boardwalk Empire Costume Q&A: John Dunn & Lisa Padovani

Scorsese Wins Directorial Emmy for “Empire”

Filed under: Top Stories — Boardwalk Empire @ 11:12 am
Martin Scorsese at the Emmy Awards

Martin Scorsese

Martin Scorsese has won an Emmy for directing the series premiere of Boardwalk Empire, the primetime HBO drama based on Nelson Johnson’s Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City.

In addition to directing the pilot, Scorsese is also an executive producer on the series. The pilot episode aired on September 19, 2010 and led to HBO’s almost immediate decision to pick up the series for a second season.

In an early interview about the series, Scorsese was was quoted:

To me, it’s as if we’re talking now about the 1980s or late 1970s. That was like yesterday to me. The 20s in my head were always very present because my parents always referred to it: the music, the people, the clothes. I know all the songs from that period; I know all the films. We knew it all. And so it was a natural transition. But you know I really was fascinated with the idea of working with Terry Winter and these guys, and taking these characters over 13 hours, developing them, developing their story, the complications of corruption in American politics.

Anthony Venutolo of The Star-Ledger covered the award for

Emmy Awards 2011: Martin Scorsese wins Directing for a Drama Series

Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese has won Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for the pilot of “Boardwalk Empire.”

The period HBO drama was adapted from Nelson Johnson’s best-selling non-fiction book “Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City.” It centered on real-life criminal kingpin Enoch “Nucky” Johnson. On the show, the central character’s name was changed to Enoch “Nucky” Thompson (Steve Buscemi). He portrays the Atlantic County Treasurer who rose to prominence during the Prohibition period of the ’20s and ’30s in Atlantic City.

The show is run by Emmy Award-winning screenwriter Terence Winter of “The Sopranos.” Other producers include Scorsese, Mark Wahlberg and frequent episode director Tim Van Patten.

Read the full story at

More Season Two Posters Released

Filed under: Boardwalk Buzz — Boardwalk Empire @ 10:18 am

HBO released a couple of Season Two posters a few weeks ago, and now they have shown us five more character posters to whet your appetite for the premier of season two this Sunday.