"Grown Ups 2" is the clear "winner" of this year's Razzie nominations, although the voters saved plenty of vitriol for summer flops "The Lone Ranger" and "After Earth," and the star-studded comedy anthology "Movie 43."
'Lone Ranger,' 'After Earth,' Lady Gaga and Kim Kardashian also 'honored'
New films with Kristen Stewart, Michael Fassbender and more
In the middle of this month's entertainment avalanche there is a magical place where Hollywood's dreams come true. No, it's not Disneyland, it's the Sundance Film Festival. Although, if you immediately thought the former you certainly made Disney stockholders happy.
First time since 2004 the awards have been presented
The Makeup and Hairstylists Guild has not presented awards in nearly a decade. This year, however, IATSE Local 706 is dusting off the trophies and jumping back into the kudos circuit.
'Pacific Rim,' 'The Hobbit' and 'Iron Man 3' not far behind
Speaking of visual effects, after the "World War Z" went over really well and newly designed tech for "Oblivion" was a major talking point at the Academy's visual effects bake-off presentation last weekend, I had been betting on each to slide into the final five Thursday morning. But then, neither landed a single nomination for the Visual Effects Society today, so maybe that'll call for some last-minute tinkering on my predictions.
Female directors dominate the list
Best Documentary Feature remains one of this year's most excitingly competitive Oscar races. While some titles -- notably two critics' favorites, Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Act of Killing" and Sarah Polley's "Stories We Tell" -- have emerged repeatedly in the precursor awards, you'd be hard pressed to name a clear frontrunner, while no inclusions or omissions from the Academy's 15-film shortlist would be truly shocking when the nominations are announced on Thursday.
Lift the veil on how seemingly mundane environments were achieved
It's amazing, really, how seemingly mundane realities are so elaborately manifested in cinema. So much of what you see on screen, you'd never know, is a digital effect. This is the magic making business and these guys below the line who craft this stuff for us remain largely unsung, and particularly when their work is so invisible (as, often, it should be).
With that in mind, take a gander at the visual effects reel for "The Wolf of Wall Street" below. It takes things up a whole new level where lifting the veil on how things were accomplished is concerned. It's one of the better presentations of such a thing I've seen, and hopefully — whether you're a fan of the film or not — it will give you a whole new appreciation for how it was made.
Also: On White's eviction from the NYFCC, and Cannes' new president
Funny that Cannes named Jane Campion their jury president last week, while the Berlin Film Festival -- which is only three weeks away -- is only announcing their now. Anyway, former Focus Features chief James Schamus is an inspired and discerning pick for the role. The same, in fact, goes for the jury supporting him, an eclectic, international bunch that includes recent Golden Globe nominee Greta Gerwig, two-time Oscar winner Christoph Waltz, Michel Gondry (whose fascinating 2013 film "Mood Indigo" has finally been picked up by Drafthouse Films), Tony Leung and James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli. Can't wait to see what they pick between them. [Berlinale]
The 19th annual celebration happens Thursday night
The Broadcast Film Critics Association has announced recipients of honorary awards for the upcoming Critics' Choice Movie Awards being held on Thursday, Jan. 16.
Producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron unveil a theme for the upcoming show
The Academy has announced that the 86th annual Academy Awards will focus on a celebration of movie heroes. The show will honor big-screen real-life heroes, super heroes, popular heroes and animated heroes, both past and present.
'All is Lost' and 'Rush' fail to make the cut
Nominees have been announced for the 50th annual Cinema Audio Society (CAS) Awards. A sometimes barometer of the Academy's Best Sound Mixing category. But the two awards don't always correspond. In recent years films like "Hanna" and "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" have managed to get in with the Society but failed to be recognized by the sound branch.