If you had Damien Chazelle's "Whiplash" chalked up for a Best Original Screenplay nomination, hold your horses. Despite the demonstrable fact that Chazelle directed a short film of the same name that was merely a scene taken from the already-written feature in order to raise funds for said feature, the Academy has apparently deemed it an adapted screenplay.
Members of the Vancouver Film Critics Circle have finished up their annual barroom vote and settled on Richard Linklater's "Boyhood" as the year's best film. They went out on a respectable limb in the Best Actress race, however, opting for Tilda Swinton's "Only Lovers Left Alive" performance. Meanwhile, Stéphane Lafleur's "Tu dors Nicole" cleaned up in the Canadian categories.
Just before the end of the year, we looked at the incredible accomplishments of Weta Digital on "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies." This, however, was not the only 2014 film where the wizards of that New Zealand-based effects house had their talents on full display. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" was the latest entry in the on-going rebooted franchise, where Weta topped itself yet again. And it began at a high time for the studio.
The Georgia Film Critics Association has more or less kept to the standard flow today with a list of nominations led by critical darlings "Birdman," "Boyhood," "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and "Selma." Each film picked up seven nods, though "Selma" also figured into collective nods for two breakthrough nominees so you'd be on solid turf to say it was out in front.
So far, four industry groups have announced nominations this year: the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), the American Cinema Editors (ACE), the Art Directors Guild (ADG) and the Producers Guild of America (PGA). And so far, only five films have been recognized by all four groups: "Birdman," "Gone Girl," "The Grand Budapest Hotel," "The Imitation Game" and "Nightcrawler." (Nominations for the Annie Awards have also been announced, but none of these films received support there for obvious reasons.) That grouping is probably not what we were expecting.
One of the most exciting aspects of the prestige and festival seasons are the last minute surprises that often seem to come out of nowhere. Case in point, at this point last year notable favorites such as "Selma," "Still Alice" and "A Most Violent Year" hadn't even begun filming yet. There's no doubt that 2015 will bring a number of similar last minute additions, but we have to admit we're quite excited about many of the films already on the way. Why you may ask? Oh, let us count the ways.
Wait, are these official "Jane Got a Gun" stills or distant mirages hanging on the horizon of a long and winding road? It’s easy to believe the latter. After original director Lynne Ramsay ("We Need to Talk About Kevin") bailed from the Natalie Portman-led Western on the first day of shooting, producers scrambled to find a replacement, recruiting "Warrior" director Gavin O’Connor to save the day.The switch turned "Jane Got a Gun" became a rotating door for high-profile actors, with Bradley Cooper and Michael Fassbender joining and departing the cast. Ewan McGregor eventually joined Portman and Joel Edgerton as the film’s villain and shooting began late in 2013, only to hit major delays during post-production. Relativity’s release date of August 29, 2014 came and went. A rescheduled February 2015 date found itself bumped again, with the picture now settled in an early September slot.
The Producers Guild of America (PGA) added to the industry mix Monday morning with a list of 10 nominees to keep the awards season grist mill churning.
The Art Directors Guild has announced nominees for the group's 19th annual awards, and films that have come on strong as of late like "American Sniper" and "Nightcrawler" were in the mix along notable extravagant displays in the period and fantasy categories. However, there were a few missing pieces.
The North Texas Film Critics Association has joined the crowd and named "Boyhood" the year's best film. Richard Linklater won Best Director, while Jake Gyllenhaal and Rosamund pike took top acting honors for "Nightcrawler" and "Gone Girl" respectively. "Birdman" nearly came up empty-handed but for an ensemble cast prize.