<p>Sean Penn and Charlize Theron, who are also romantically linked at the moment.</p>

Sean Penn and Charlize Theron, who are also romantically linked at the moment.

Credit: AP Photo

Sean Penn and Charlize Theron are making a movie together

'Tree of Life,' '12 Years a Slave' producer Bill Pohlad also on board

It looks like Sean Penn is set for the director's chair for the fifth time in his career with "The Last Face," a drama starring Charlize Theron, Javier Bardem and "Blue is the Warmest Color" starlet Adèle Exarchopoulos.

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"Party Girl"
"Party Girl"
Credit: Cannes Film Festival

'Party Girl' to get the party started in Un Certain Regard at Cannes

Argentinian auteur Pablo Trapero will head the jury

Hard to believe that the Cannes Film Festival is just a month away -- before you know it, people will be cranking up the Oscar conversation again. The full lineup will be announced in Paris on April 17, but another nugget was revealed this morning. The opening film of the theoretically secondary, but increasingly prestigious, Un Certain Regard competition will be a French title: "Party Girl," the joint directorial debut of Marie Amacoukeli, Claire Burger and Samuel Theis.

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<p>Hilary Swank winning Oscar #2 for &quot;Million Dollar Baby&quot;</p>

Hilary Swank winning Oscar #2 for "Million Dollar Baby"

Credit: AP Photo

Oscar Bait: 'You're Not You' with Hilary Swank coming to theaters this year

Entertainment One acquires North American distribution rights

Let's dust off the old part-time specialty feature "Oscar Bait" with some news on an acquisition, shall we?

Now, this time last year a lot of eyes were turned toward Naomi Watts in what seemed like a baity role as Princess Diana in "Diana." Then the film waited for a distributor, and waited, and waited. The writing was on the wall by the time Entertainment One grabbed it and it went nowhere with critics, audiences and, certainly, awards-voting bodies.

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<p>Lisa Cholodenko</p>

Lisa Cholodenko

Credit: AP Photo

LA film fest announces Lisa Cholodenko as Guest Director and special award for SPC honchos

Other programs revealed, including conversations with Atticus Ross and Key & Peele

The Los Angeles Film Festival (LAFF) is gearing up for a bow this June, having already announced Bong Joon-ho's "Snowpiercer" as the opening night premiere. Today Film Independent, which puts on the fest, announced this year's guest director and a special honor for two all-timers in the indie game.

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Earl Lynn Nelson and Paul Eenhoorn in "Land Ho!."
Earl Lynn Nelson and Paul Eenhoorn in "Land Ho!."
Credit: Sony Classics

Sony Classics set Sundance hit 'Land Ho!' for July 11

A refreshing summer slot for Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens' road comedy

Perhaps the film I was most disappointed to miss at January's Sundance Film Festival was "Land Ho!," an Iceland-set road comedy from directors Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens. I've been a Katz fan for some time: his third feature, the Portland semi-noir "Cold Weather," landed in my 2010 Top 10. (I also interviewed him at that year's London Film Festival.)

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10 MORE fun facts about the MTV Movie Awards: Jennifer Lawrence, Jaden Smith, Oscar crossover

10 MORE fun facts about the MTV Movie Awards: Jennifer Lawrence, Jaden Smith, Oscar crossover

The 23rd annual ceremony is just around the corner

Last year we dug through the often heart-breaking history of the MTV Movie Awards (which seem to be leaning slightly less…bad…lately) to come up with a list of 10 fun facts for your perusal pleasure. With the 23rd annual show on the horizon, we thought we'd do a bit more searching to see if there were any other interesting factoids, and sure enough, there were a couple. (I say "we," but really I'm the only one sick enough to have bothered with this.)

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<p>Bruce Dern and Leonard Maltin at the 29th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival in January.</p>

Bruce Dern and Leonard Maltin at the 29th annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival in January.

Credit: AP Photo

Santa Barbara fest extends schedule in honor of 30th annual event

Also announces 'Wave' summer film festival

In honor of its upcoming 30th anniversary, the Santa Barbara International Film Festival has extended its calendar by one day, just one of a number of ways the annual event will be celebrating as it enters its third decade.

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<p>Scarlett Johansson in Jonathan Glazer&#39;s &quot;Under the Skin.&quot;</p>

Scarlett Johansson in Jonathan Glazer's "Under the Skin."

Credit: A24 Films

Did Scarlett Johansson really walk around Scotland unnoticed filming 'Under the Skin?'

A must-read Q&A for any fan of the modern masterpiece

"Under the Skin" finally arrived in theaters this past weekend and, happily for moviegoers, A24 Films were rewarded for their gutsy acquisition of Jonathan Glazer's transcendent film. "Skin" grossed $140,000, or $35,000 per screen in just four theaters, in New York and Los Angeles. It's the second-highest limited per-screen of the year after "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and quite impressive considering A24 did it almost completely via old-fashioned publicity and word of mouth.

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<p>Chris Evans in &quot;Captain America: The Winter Soldier&quot;</p>

Chris Evans in "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"

Credit: Marvel Studios

Tell us what you thought of 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier'

The latest Marvel film lands in theaters this weekend

The ninth Marvel Studios film to date hits theaters today, "Captain America: The Winter Soldier." Like a number of these movies, they probably could have spent more time — quite a lot more time, actually — working on what is a pretty clunky script, front to back. But the movie does what all these movies do (and, eventually, therefore, gain passes from the critical masses): it entertains. I liked it well enough, though not as much as our own Drew McWeeny, and thought it was at least unique in the landscape of all these other films. It's a high octane, grounded ride packed with action, and it has an exciting tease for the next step of the Marvel convergence. If you get around to seeing the film this weekend at the multiplex, chime in with your own thoughts here and be sure to vote in our poll below.

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<p>Scarlett Johansson in &quot;Under the Skin.&quot;</p>

Scarlett Johansson in "Under the Skin."

Credit: A24

Tell us what you thought of 'Under the Skin'

Jonathan Glazer's polarizing sci-fi beauty opens in limited release today

"Masterpiece" is a term too many critics use with too little discernment, but I feel comfortable applying it to Jonathan Glazer's extraordinary sci-fi vision "Under the Skin," which has drawn strong opinions in every direction since premiering at Telluride and Venice last year. Reviews were initially shaky, but as was the case with Glazer's last film, "Birth," nine years ago, it didn't take long for an ardent army of critical defenders to form. The less you know about going in, the better -- but I will say that it proves Glazer to be among the greatest sensualists working in cinema today, and Scarlett Johansson as a movie star of uncommon magnetism and daring. Go see what you think, and report back below; either way, it's not a film any serious film lover can afford to skip.

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