Looks like Eastern Europe is currently leading the way in this year's Oscar race for Best Foreign Language Film. Last week, Romania was the first country to officially submit an entry, with Berlinale Golden Bear winner "Child's Pose." Today, Hungary joined them with another European festival champ: "The Notebook," which won the top prize at last month's Karlovy Vary fest.
It’s a familiar situation in the film blogosphere: everyone’s mad at Harvey Weinstein, and it’s not even the Oscar season. A few hours have passed since the news broke that the business-savvy mogul, famously nicknamed “Harvey Scissorhands” in industry quarters, might be making some cuts to South Korean auteur Bong Joon-ho’s “Snowpiercer” – and already the inflamed (and inflammatory) headlines are circulating by the dozen. “Harvey thinks America is too stupid for ‘Snowpiercer,’” runs the general gist and, well, let's calm down a little.
It's been a while since I giggled through a trailer like this. But then, of course, the sadness that hits when you think of James Gandolfini, gone. Sigh…
Nicole Holofcener's "Enough Said" is set for a premiere at the Toronto Film Festival next month and looks to be a light romp for Fox Searchlight to play with this season. Globe potential? Maybe more? We'll see how it lands, but the trailer establishes it as something fun to take the edge off as the "serious" months knock on our door.
Over the weekend, Jeff Nichols' "Mud" quietly overtook "The Place Beyond the Pines" at the box office to become the specialty release champ on the year so far. Fingers crossed that its success there and with 151 of 154 critics noted at Rotten Tomatoes (boy do these three look silly) helps it find room in the upcoming Oscar season.
The film -- along with "Pines," in fact -- is set for release on DVD/Blu-ray tomorrow, so if you haven't caught it yet, you'll have your chance. To whet the appetite, Lionsgate Home Entertainment has offered us a glimpse at the special features of the package with this brief take from Nichols and Reese Witherspoon discussing the actress's character in the film.
A couple of weeks ago, we reported that George Clooney will receive the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film at the Britannia Awards, an annual event held by BAFTA's Los Angeles division to celebrate unity between the British and US film industries. Today, two further honorees were confirmed for the November 9 ceremony: Kathryn Bigelow and Ben Kingsley.
We have a host. Studios have made their fall festival moves. Potential season players like "Captain Phillips" and "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" and "The Fifth Estate" and "Gravity," etc., have secured their big reveals. Telluride is on the horizon and with it, the season. You ready to do this?
I'm not. Not yet, anyway. We looked at the sidebar and figured it's been a month, let's refresh the predictions and typically, a column comes with that. But what's there to say? Okay, there is this and that…
If you were A24 Films you had to be a tad worried going into the opening weekend of "The Spectacular Now." The Sundance favorite received, um, spectacular reviews (81 on Metacritic, 90% on Rotten Tomatoes), but the art house market and audience can only expand so much in the summer. "Blue Jasmine" is already a powerhouse and "Fruitvale Station" and "The Way Way Back" continue to do very strong business. Could "Spectacular" find an audience during this traditionally slow time for prestige indies? Thankfully, there was no need for concern. "Spectacular" is off to an excellent start grossing $200,000 or $50,000 per theater. And, happily, it means the great performances from Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley will not be forgotten.
Well, AMPAS brass decided to end the speculation mercifully early this year, announcing Ellen DeGeneres as the host of next year's Academy Awards ceremony -- her second stab at one of showbiz's trickiest gigs, having first done the job to amiable effect back in 2007. And predictably enough, the news has met with a mixed response: for everyone who's happy to see DeGeneres return with her warm, non-confrontational approach, there's another (like our own Greg Ellwood) who thinks it's too conservative a choice.
I very rarely run a transcript/Q&A-style interview because, well, on one hand I think it's kind of lazy (not always). On the other, I'm a writer and I like to write, I like to paint a portrait of someone and use their words as tools toward those ends.
But sometimes you talk to someone whose every word you want to print, and filmmaker Derek Cianfrance is definitely one of those guys. The director of "The Place Beyond the Pines" has been making the rounds lately to discuss the film again as it heads for DVD/Blu-ray next week and so it was a great opportunity to finally see the film (I had missed it in theatrical) and talk to him about his vision for it.
Yesterday, Kris and I looked over a number of upcoming potential prestige films that, despite high-profile festival appointments, are still seeking a foothold in the distribution market. Today, coincidentally enough, a trailer has arrived that handily proves just how long the journey from a festival premiere to an actual release can be -- even for a relatively big-name project. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Billy Bob Thornton's "Jayne Mansfield's Car."