NEW YORK - How on earth did it take this long for Jessica Chastain to come to Hollywood's attention? She's spending the day talking about her role as Maya, a hard edged CIA analyst on the difficult hunt for Osama Bin Laden in Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty" and her genuine charisma is beyond infectious. She practically glows when talking about the project. Of course, the truth is it didn't take Hollywood that long. Chastain booked her first major movie role over three years ago and shot six other movies before "The Tree of Life" finally brought her to moviegoers attention in May, 2011. Three months later "The Help" hit theaters and she went from relative unknown to finding herself recognized on the street.
In an announcement that will surprise no one, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has extended the nomination voting deadline from Thursday, Jan. 3 to Friday, Jan. 4.
AMPAS COO Ric Robertson noted in a release, “By extending the voting deadline we are providing every opportunity available to make the transition to online balloting as smooth as possible. We’re grateful to our global membership for joining us in this process.”
Last December I took inspiration from Mr. Tapley and listed some of the notable achievements in music and television for 2011. And, of course, some year-end movie "awards." Let's try this one more time for 2012, shall we?
You can review my top 10 films of 2012 here. And, for year-end picks from the rest of HitFix's editorial team, click on the related tabs within this post.
NEW YORK - No matter what your opinion of Tom Hooper's "Les Miserables" there is one thing everyone can agree on: it's great to hear Amanda Seyfried singing again.
David O. Russell's "Silver Linings Playbook" isn't the frontrunner for best picture many of us thought it would be, but don't tell that to the one time best director nominee. The passion project has given Russell much to be thankful for including audience awards at Toronto, Austin and the Hamptons film festivals, five Independent Spirit Awards nods, four Golden Globe Awards nominations and an impressive four SAG Awards nominations including best ensemble. "Playbook" star Jennifer Lawrence won best actress from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and Russell snagged best adapted screenplay honors from the Washington, DC Area Film Critics Association. Now, after coming close to winning best director with his semi-comeback "The Fighter" almost two years ago you'd assume Russell was intent on sealing the deal with "Playbook." That doesn't appear to be the case.
When great British actors reach a certain age Americans, er, media types tend to believe they must have worked together at some point during their careers. In the West End, on the BBC or in some movie. At the least, they were in one of those "Harry Potter" movies, right? Well, not really.
Every season there is a movie or performance that is a head scratcher when it comes to why it does or doesn't appeal to the Academy. Films and portrayals that will be long remembered after a number of other nominated works are getting their share of the best picture spotlight now. Immediate examples that come to mind include "Do the Right Thing" (one of the greatest films of the '80s), "The Ice Storm" (ditto for the '90s), "The Dark Knight" (for the '00s) and, oh yeah, Stanley Kubrick's "2001" (of all time). And as for overlooked actors, last year found both Ryan Gosling ("Drive") and Michael Fassbender ("Shame") of the list of Academy omissions gone wrong. With the advent of the 10 nomination option for best picture, however, you would think that overlooking great movies would be a rare occurrence. Ladies and gentleman of the jury, I give you my own best picture of the year, "The Impossible."
NEW YORK - Having worked in the movie industry for over 15 years, you can probably guess I've seen a lot of films. I've often been asked to attend very early screenings for highly anticipated films. Moreover, I've been lucky to attend numerous premieres in Hollywood, New York and on the festival circuit in Toronto, Telluride and Park City. I have never, however, seen a reaction to a performance in a movie theater like the euphoric response to Jennifer Hudson's turn as Effie White in "Dreamgirls." Spontaneous applause is one thing, an impromptu standing ovation during three separate premieres is something else. And, simply, nothing has ever come close...until this year. Anne Hathaway clearly doesn't have Jennifer Hudson's vocal talent, but she may give Hudson's legendary awards season a run for her money in "Les Miserables."
It's almost Christmas, so it's obviously time to reveal the host for the 2013 MTV Movie Awards, right? Well, maybe not, but with "Jersey Shore" airing its final episode Thursday night MTV decided to use the larger than usual audience to promote next April's annual pseudo-awards event. The bigger surprise was that the network made the inspired choice to tap Aussie Rebel Wilson as next year's host.
NEW YORK - We've been waiting a long time for Hugh Jackman to sing on the big screen. From his Tony Award-winning turn in "The Boy From Oz" to his three stints hosting Broadway's annual awards show to his lauded turn as Academy Awards host (arguably the best Oscars show over the past decade), Jackman has teased us with his impressive voice, sly dance moves and old school showmanship. Granted, producers have tried to get him to commit to a number of movie musical projects, but most of them have been stuck in development hell for years leaving fans to wonder if we'd ever see Jackman sing in his prime. That's all changed with the actor's SAG and Golden Globes Awards nominated turn as Jean Valjean in "Les Miserables." And, in something of a surprise, it turns out that he had to campaign to get the role.