<p>Michael Keaton in &quot;Birdman&quot;</p>

Michael Keaton in "Birdman"

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

Is 'Birdman' a one-shot 'magic trick' that could win Chivo Lubezki his second Oscar in a row?

The 'Gravity' cinematographer better not have gotten tired of the awards circuit just yet

After landing nomination after nomination without a win, cinematographer Emmanuel "Chivo" Lubezki finally claimed an Oscar a few months ago for his jaw-dropping work on Alfonso Cuarón's "Gravity." But it wasn't just the technical prowess of the accomplishment that landed him that spotlight, conceiving of new technology to tell the story Cuarón wanted to tell and making it all work so well with the visual effects on display. It was also the drawn-out, patient takes, which Lubezki and Cuarón had been playing with ever since "Y Tu Mamá También" over a decade ago. All of that went toward an identifiable style that became the visual trademark of the movie, and the result was a much-deserved Oscar. But if the word on Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Birdman" is true, then Lubezki could very well be in line for his second in a row.

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Top 10 films directed by Clint Eastwood

Top 10 films directed by Clint Eastwood

'Jersey Boys' may not be his finest two hours, but which film was?

Okay, so the reviews are in, and it turns out I'm not alone in thinking that Clint Eastwood's "Jersey Boys" -- the 84-year-old actor-director-producer's 33rd effort behind the camera -- is a bit of a dud. Worse still, it's not the only recent misfire for the four-time Oscar winner frequently referred by critics as the last true classicist in American cinema. "J. Edgar," "Hereafter," "Invictus" and "Changeling" all met with varying degrees of opposition, though his defenders stand firm. "Has any working director had more wobbly movies defended by auteurist critics than Clint Eastwood?" tweeted Mark Harris recently.

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'Boardwalk Empire' and Broadway stars bring us into Clint Eastwood's 'Jersey Boys'

'Boardwalk Empire' and Broadway stars bring us into Clint Eastwood's 'Jersey Boys'

Plus: What new scenes were added?

NEW YORK - John Lloyd Young won a Tony Award for bringing Frankie Valli to Broadway in the hit musical "Jersey Boys," but he knew trying to land a role in Clint movie adaptation wouldn't be easy. That being said, he didn't flinch when he was asked to audition.

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<p>Ava DuVernay and David Oyelowo</p>

Ava DuVernay and David Oyelowo

Credit: AP Photo

Oprah Winfrey-produced 'Selma' moves to Christmas just in time for the Oscar game

Paramount has another player for the upcoming circuit

I had been sitting back wondering whether Ava DuVernay's "Selma" would be ready in time for this year's upcoming awards season. Paramount already has a couple of things to play with, from Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children" to Christopher Nolan's "Interstellar." Well, add another, as DuVernay's film has just been slated for a Christmas Day limited release.

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<p>&quot;Inside Out&quot;</p>

"Inside Out"

Credit: Pixar Animation Studios

Pixar's 'Inside Out' has strong personal and emotional origins for director Pete Docter

Footage and story details of the 2015 film were unveiled a year out from release

LOS ANGELES — For the first time in nearly a decade, Pixar Animation Studios is taking the year off. The Emeryville-Calif.-based company will not be releasing a film in 2014, and it also finds itself in an interesting position, striving to maintain its identity as a haven for bold original visions while at the same time seeing some of its biggest successes inevitably move into franchise and sequel terrain. Wednesday night representatives of the studio took over a theater in West Hollywood's Directors Guild of America (DGA) headquarters to present materials from one such original vision from "Monsters, Inc." and "Up" director Pete Docter: "Inside Out."

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'Dear White People' teaser trailer doesn't want your stereotypes
Credit: Roadside Attractions

'Dear White People' teaser trailer doesn't want your stereotypes

Never think of 'Gremlins' the same

As "Dear White People" heads to theaters on Oct. 17, remember: this isn't "The Help," "The Butler," or any of the other films where a white person leads black people in the charge, or one where Tyler Perry wears a dress.

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Top 10 performances in Roman Polanski films

Top 10 performances in Roman Polanski films

With 'Venus in Fur' on the way, which actors most excelled under his direction?

Tomorrow, more than a year after its Cannes Competition premiere, Roman Polanski's "Venus in Fur" finally opens in US theaters. It's the 20th narrative feature of a career that now spans six decades, so a list themed around the Oscar-winning director's work seemed in order. Given that "Venus in Fur" -- Polanski's third film, after "Death and the Maiden" and "Carnage," to replicate the scale and pace of an intimate stage production -- is based so explicitly around notions of performance, and the push-pull relationship between actor and director, a selection of his most successful actorly collaborations seemed the obvious way to go.

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<p>Meryl Streep in &quot;Into the Woods&quot;</p>

Meryl Streep in "Into the Woods"

Credit: Disney

Stephen Sondheim reveals conservative changes to Disney's 'Into the Woods'

He also says an original song has been added to the adaptation

The folks over at Disney have to be tearing their collective hair out this morning. It seems that "Into the Woods" composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim has spilled the beans on the studio's upcoming filmic adaptation of the musical (directed by Rob Marshall and starring Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp, Emily Blunt and Anna Kendrick, among others) and revealed that some conservative changes have been made.

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'Jersey Boys' stars marvel at Clint Eastwood's advice and their chance at big screen stardom

'Jersey Boys' stars marvel at Clint Eastwood's advice and their chance at big screen stardom

Rare opportunity for the stage veterans

NEW YORK - It goes without saying that Broadway actors are rarely able to reprise their roles in the movie versions of stage musicals they've starred in.  For every Anthony Rapp in "Rent," Rita Moreno in "West Side Story" or Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick in "The Producers" there are countless other films that didn't even consider actors who played the same role on the stage.  Usually it's just too risky for Hollywood execs to fund a musical without some old fashioned movie starpower on board (it's still considered a risky proposition).   Don't tell that to Clint Eastwood, however.

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Jared Leto at the 2014 Academy Awards.
Jared Leto at the 2014 Academy Awards.
Credit: AP Photo

Jared Leto claims 'Brilliance' by replacing Will Smith (UPDATED)

The Oscar winner will star opposite Noomi Rapace in the high-concept thriller

UPDATE (6/20): Not so fast. According Nikki Finke, Leto has turned down the project after all. Still, nice work in getting offered the gig. Noomi Rapace remains attached; the search for a male lead continues.

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