PARK CITY — Robert Redford and the Sundance Film Festival brain trust reconvened once again for the festival's annual press conference kick-off Thursday afternoon. While this year's edition features documentaries on controversial topics such as Scientology ("Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief") and the ex-gay movement ("I Am Michael"), the panel instead bounced around the subject of "change," diversity and the impact of modern day television.
One of my favorite Oscar nominations this year was Mark Bridges getting the call for his work on Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice." I only wish David Crank and Amy Wells could have joined him because the design of this film was out of sight (to say nothing of Robert Elswit's lush lensing). Still, it's sort of serendipitous that it's Bridges and Anderson (in the adapted screenplay category) representing the film, as like Elswit, their collaboration goes all the way back to the beginning, but unlike Elswit (who won the Oscar for "There Will Be Blood"), Bridges had yet to be recognized for a PTA movie.
It's been a week since the nominations for the 87th Academy Awards were announced and, well, there certainly isn't euphoria in the air for those residing in the 323 or 310 area codes. The controversy over the lack of nominations for "Selma" still stings (as it should) and following the embarrassing hacked Sony E-mails, it's just another round of considerably negative press for Hollywood. There is almost a sense that another shoe is going to drop and somehow things will get even uglier. Of course, there was a lot of celebrating over the massive box office success for "American Sniper" this past weekend, but it's going to take a lot more blockbusters (they are coming) for Hollywood to feel the weight of all this drama lift off its shoulders. And the Oscars, meant as a time of celebration, may not bring much relief.
There has been a lot of heat going into Sundance that this year's festival could be another buyer's market for mini-majors and indie distributors looking to fill out their 2015 slates. Fox Searchlight already picked up Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig's "Mistress America" and now Lionsgate has surprised by acquiring another premiere title, Jared Hess' "Don Verdean."
GLAAD has announced nominees for the 26th annual GLAAD Media Awards in categories covering film, television, comic books, music and journalism. And in the film arena, Oscar season staple "The Imitation Game" was joined by films like "Love is Strange," "Pride," "Dear White People" and "Lilting" in the list of nominations.
If you've been reading us this season then you know we've already given you pretty thorough analyses of this year's short film categories. I watched all the films that made it to the final consideration stage and offered up thoughts on each and some somewhat informed predictions. In the end, though, it was still tricky to guess, but I did get four of the five animated players right. Now, with nominees announced, it seems worth it to review. So let's…
Last week, Ava DuVernay took "Selma" to screen at the White House 100 years after "Birth of a Nation" became the first film to do so. To say the least, the occasion meant a great deal to the filmmaker.
If we've survived the Golden Globes, if the Oscar nominations have been announced and if the nation's television critics have finished getting the lowdown on what's new for the next six months, it can only mean one thing: Sundance Film Festival time.
"Boyhood" has kept its precursor dominance strong with a win from the Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association's Dorian Awards. Eddie Redmayne and Julianne Moore took top honors while Ava DuVernay won director of the year.
The International 3D & Advanced Imaging Society has announced nominees for the year, and as best I can tell, it's pretty much every film released on 3D that landed a spot. That's probably not true, but it certainly seems that way.