BEVERLY HILLS — Get ready to hear a lot more about actor David Oyelowo. As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Ava DuVernay's "Selma," which sounded a thunder clap upon arrival at this year's AFI Fest, he exhibits a presence and a commitment that is sure to keep him in the thick of the Best Actor Oscar discussion. And according to him, it was sort of pre-ordained.
No joke, there were a ton of surprises from today's announcement of the 2015 Independent Spirit Awards nominees. That sounds like something someone would write every year after Film Independent reveals the honorees for its awards shrine of American independent cinema, but that's actually not the case.
We laid out a few of the films that weren't eligible for today's Independent Spirit Awards announcement yesterday. Movies like "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and "Foxcatcher," etc., as well as a number of foreign players, were not going to be in the mix. But of those that were, the real shocker today is that "The Imitation Game" turned up a goose egg. According to The Weinstein Company, it was eligible. That's not getting off to a great start for Harvey Weinstein's thoroughbred this season.
Tuesday morning, nominations were announced for the 30th annual Independent Spirit Awards. Nominees for Best Feature included "Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)," "Boyhood," "Love is Strange," "Selma" and "Whiplash."
The number of design changes and behind-closed-doors shake-ups surrounding Aaron Sorkin’s Steve Jobs biopic would likely do the Apple Computers mastermind proud. The movie lost stars, lost directors, and, most recently, lost its studio home. But by the time the movie hits theaters, that meta-narrative will be an afterthought. Suffer in private or public — it doesn’t really matter, as long as the finished product blows the paying customers away. And it certainly could, now that someone has decided to make the thing.
Yes, it's finally come to this. After months of festival debuts, cocktail parties and a fake awards show that somehow was aired on a major broadcast network, an awards event that actually means something (sort of) in the Oscar race is happening. The 2014 Independent Spirit Awards nominations are hours away and, in some ways, they are the most competitive in recent memory.
The gears in composer Alexandre Desplat’s head are always turning. They have to be; even with a packed scheduled — he’ll see five films hit American screens before the end of 2014 — his artistic process is still one of care and contemplation. With each new score, Desplat chisels out a sound that’s recognizably story-driven, interwoven with theme and individual from his other works. In his new film, "The Imitation Game," the composer translates Alan Turing’s life into a fractaling piano score that encompasses both the mathematician’s achievements — cracking the Nazi’s "Enigma Code" with a proto-computer known as the Turing Machine — and an emotional frustration bubbling underneath the surface.
"Moulin Rouge!" (2001), "Chicago" (2002), "The Phantom of the Opera" (2004), "Dreamgirls" (2006), "Enchanted" (2007), "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" (2007), "Nine" (2009), "Les Misérables" (2012). Between them, 50 oscar nominations, only three of them recognized for Best Picture and only one of them taking the big prize. That's more or less the modern legacy Rob Marshall's "Into the Woods" is looking to enter into, a stage of relative reinvigoration for the musical film genre.
BEVERLY HILLS — I love talking to Oscar Isaac about the craft of acting. He's never quick with a facile soundbite and always has something intriguing to chew on regarding his choices, if you're willing to get into it. And with his subtle, smoldering work as Abel — a man trying to build a business and a life in the middle of the cold and ruthless New York City of 1981 in J.C. Chandor's "A Most Violent Year" — there is plenty to chew on indeed.
Thomas Vinterberg’s "The Hunt" earned a Best Foreign Language Academy Award nomination at this year’s ceremony. Starring Mads Mikkelsen, the psychologically aggressive film focuses in on a town imploding after pedophilia accusations spread like wildfire. Like he did with his Dogme 95 film "The Celebration," Vinterberg’s film burrows straight to the gut, a moral play with physicality. Based on the trailer for his follow-up, an adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s "Far From The Madding Crowd," the director will adapt that audacious approach for sweeping romance.