Get ready Donut Time. Your 15 minutes of fame is right around the corner. The old school donut shop on the corner of Santa Monica Blvd. and Highland Ave. is the beginning and end point for Sean Baker's triumphant drama "Tangerine" and the Sundance breakout is about to turn it into an LA cinematic landmark.
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century? Check here for a complete list of our essays.
The end of the 1990s was the end of an era on the big screen. The independent filmmaking movement that started the decade had taken full bloom and infiltrated the business. Major studios had begun to jump headlong into the "dependent" game, amping up prestige product and utilizing the awards season as a marketing tool. The blockbuster landscape at the summer multiplex had been interesting, full of original concepts (good and bad), but something else was on the way — a new overlord in the business of film, and one that would more or less make the age of the movie star (at least as we had come to know it) a thing of the past.
NEW YORK - Matthias Schoenaerts is best known for his roles in the acclaimed French drama "Rust and Bone" alongside Marion Cotillard and in last September's thriller "The Drop" opposite Tom Hardy, but the Belgian actor has spent a good chunk of the past 18 months shooting a number of period pieces with Oscar friendly actors. The first, "A Little Chaos" with Kate Winslet, debuted at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival to not so great reviews. The second, "Suite Française" with Michele Williams, has already opened to mixed reviews in most of Europe and there currently is no U.S. release date. The third, "Far From The Madding Crowd," which finds him romancing Carey Mulligan, has earned mostly positive notices so far and opens in limited release Friday.
Woody Allen is returning to Cannes next month with his 46th directorial effort, "Irrational Man." It's Allen's second collaboration with his latest lady muse, Emma Stone, and his first with the always mercurial, but talented Joaquin Phoenix. Based on the trailer released today, "Irrational" appears to center on a "radical" philosophy professor, Abe Lucas (Phoenix), and the relationships he develops with a younger student (Emma Stone) and another professor (Parker Posey). Oh, and he might be going through some sort of mid-life crisis. It's all pretty much expected from Allen at this stage of his career, except for one tiny element, a substantial role for the one and only Ms. Posey.
Have you been watching this last leg of David Letterman shows as the late night king prepares to retire next month? If not, you're missing out. It's classy send-off after classy send-off, and Tuesday night, Michael Keaton decided to swing back by to say goodbye to his old pal from the comedy club circuit. We're a few months removed from the "Birdman" star losing the Academy Award to "The Theory of Everything" star Eddie Redmayne on Oscar night, and he had a few thoughts on that, it turned out.
If you don't believe awards season runs 365 days a year look no further than the news today that Alcon Entertainment has acquired the U.S. rights to "The 33." Based on the Copiapó mining accident in 2010, the new drama centers on 33 minters who were trapped for 69 days in a collapsed copper-gold mine in Northern Chile. Their plight captured the attention of the world and, surprise, Hollywood came calling. Independently financed by Phoenix Pictures and Half Circle, "33" is being distributed in Chile by 20th Century Fox, but not in the U.S. The news Alcon came on board and Warner Bros. will distribute makes this a somewhat unusual story.
The life of Harriet Tubman has been screaming for the feature film treatment for ages. Outside of — what, "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter?" — there's never really been a movie depiction of the famed abolitionist. Well, thanks to HBO and Amblin, that's all about to change. And Viola Davis is going to knock this out of the park.
It's kinda freaky if I'm flying at 30,000 feet and something like "Air Force One" or "Flight" comes on as the in-flight movie. (Particularly in the case of the latter, as talking to screenwriter John Gatins about his research on that one has forever unhinged something in me.) I guess if movies were shown on buses, "Speed" would make a dicey proposition, too. So hats off to the astronauts who took in "Gravity" for movie night aboard the International Space Station recently.
The Tony Awards Administration Committee announced Monday that write/director/actor/GENIUS John Cameron Mitchell will receive a special Tony Award at the upcoming 69th annual presentation of stage honors.