If you caught "Saturday Night Live's" 40th anniversary special Sunday night, you saw some of this year's Oscar nominees capitalizing on the massive exposure opportunity with final Oscar ballots due Tuesday.
Less than a week away from the Oscars and things still, if you ask around, feel unsettled. But is it? Wasn't the die cast by the Producers Guild victory for "Birdman?" And the notion fortified with SAG ensemble and DGA victories? And again with further industry kudos from the art directors, cinematographers, sound mixers and sound editors?
The Motion Picture Sound Editors' (MPSE) 62nd annual Golden Reel Awards honored a full spread of films Sunday night. "American Sniper," "Birdman," "Unbroken," "Get On Up" and "Big Hero 6" all walked away with hardware.
The American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) has awarded "Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)" top honors for cinematography. Emmanuel Lubezki also won the award last year, making him the first back-to-back recipient to date. This is his fourth ASC award after "Children of Men," "The Tree of Life" and "Gravity," all of them in the last eight years.
Capping off a busy night for awards in the run-up to the 87th annual Oscars, the Cinema Audio Society (CAS) awarded the sound mixing team of "Birdman" top honors Saturday night. "Sherlock," "Game of Thrones" and "Modern Family" won in the TV categories.
The Makeup and Hairstylists Guild is well-established on the circuit in the organization's second year of doling out top honors for hair and makeup work across the fields of film, television and theater. The 2015 ceremony Saturday night saw wins for "Guardians of the Galaxy," "Birdman" and "American Horror Story: Freak Show," among others.
The Writers Guild of America (WGA) handed out top film honors to the screenplays of "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and "The Imitation Game" Saturday night. On the television side, "Louie" and "True Detective" were favorites, winning two prizes each.
With the Shorts HD package of Oscar-nominated short films out in release, you've probably run into plenty of analysis pieces breaking down the three categories. Here is ours, in case you missed it. In the meantime, though, Shorts HD has really stepped things up on the overall presence of this program.
The 65th annual Berlin International Film Festival has drawn to a close with Darren Aronofsky's jury settling on awards for films in competition. Jafar Panahi's "Taxi" walked away with top honors, while the "45 Years" duo of Tom Courtenay and Charlotte Rampling won acting honors.
Awards season has its pluses and minuses, but if you live in New York or Los Angeles you can be a part of some very special events that wouldn't happen without the Oscar spotlight. On the same night that Best Documentary frontrunner "CITIZENFOUR" was the subject of a TimesTalk in New York with director Laura Poitras, Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowdown via Google Hangout (sadly, it was also the last public appearance by David Carr), Fox Searchlight held a special screening of "Birdman" at the Ace Hotel Theater in Los Angeles.