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Oscars: How 'Shape of Water' Music Evokes an Underwater Feeling

Victoria & Abdul to 1927 in Wonderstruck up to the present day, with plenty of stops in the 1940s via Dunkirk, Mudbound and Darkest Hour and a quirky detour to 2002 for Lady Bird.

For composers, the era becomes another consideration when scoring a period piece, but they warn against being too doctrinaire when it comes to designing a sonic landscape confined to a specific time frame. "Principle rejection is a silly idea," says Thomas Newman, who composed the music for Stephen Frears' Victoria &...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Annette Bening Finds the Truth in the Very Strange Tale of Gloria Grahame and ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’

Annette Bening Finds the Truth in the Very Strange Tale of Gloria Grahame and ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’
“Soon to be a major motion picture.” From its publication in 1986, that was what British actor-writer Peter Turner expected of his Gloria Grahame memoir “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool.” But it took three decades for the May-December romance starring Annette Bening and Jamie Bell to finally hit theaters December 29.

This could have been yet another film that never got made. But James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli knew Turner back when the young actor was in love with Grahame, his fellow lodger twice his age at a Primrose Hill rooming house. “I’ve known Peter Turner for 40 years,” said Broccoli. “I met him and Gloria together. It was a special relationship. Sometime after she passed away he wrote the memoir, and gave me the manuscript. I thought it was so beautiful.”

Columbia Pictures chairman David Puttnam optioned the book shortly after its publication, but the project went into turnaround
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Annette Bening Finds the Truth in the Very Strange Tale of Gloria Grahame and ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’

Annette Bening Finds the Truth in the Very Strange Tale of Gloria Grahame and ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’
“Soon to be a major motion picture.” From its publication in 1986, that was what British actor-writer Peter Turner expected of his Gloria Grahame memoir “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool.” But it took three decades for the May-December romance starring Annette Bening and Jamie Bell to finally hit theaters December 29.

This could have been yet another film that never got made. But James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli knew Turner back when the young actor was in love with Grahame, his fellow lodger twice his age at a Primrose Hill rooming house. “I’ve known Peter Turner for 40 years,” said Broccoli. “I met him and Gloria together. It was a special relationship. Sometime after she passed away he wrote the memoir, and gave me the manuscript. I thought it was so beautiful.”

Columbia Pictures chairman David Puttnam optioned the book shortly after its publication, but the project went into turnaround
See full article at Indiewire »

My Top Ten Oscar® Submissions for Best Foreign Language Film includes Darkest Horse: from Slovakia…

My Top Ten Oscar® Submissions for Best Foreign Language Film includes Darkest Horse: from Slovakia…
My Top Ten Oscar® Submissions for Best Foreign Language Film includes Darkest Horse: from Slovakia, ‘The Line’You know how, when you finally see a movie you really love, all things seem possible? How a great movie transports you to a new reality? Without that experience, normal life seems drab and dreary unless you use other means of transcendance, like hope, art, music, dancing, religion or drugs.

Have I yet raved about any of the 25 foreign language submissions?

Yes, but it was a long time ago when it won the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, that I was so enamoured Hungarian director Ildikó Enyedi’s Of Body and Soul (as I was with her previous film, the 1989 Cannes Film Festival Camera d’or winner, My Twentieth Century, which was seen by about a .02% of the population). But that was way back in February.

I would put my body
See full article at Sydney's Buzz »

Bryan Singer’s Replacement Found For ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’

It’s funny how things work. In the early days of development on “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Dexter Fletcher was among the directors — which included David Fincher, Stephen Frears and Tom Hooper — who were eyeballed to helm the movie. As you know, he didn’t land the gig and went on to direct other projects including “Eddie The Eagle,” while lining up possible musical biopics including “Sunny Afternoon” about The Kinks, and “Rocketman” about Elton John.

Continue reading Bryan Singer’s Replacement Found For ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ at The Playlist.
See full article at The Playlist »

Record Opener ‘Disaster Artist’ and ‘The Shape of Water’ Lead Specialty Box Office Surge

  • Indiewire
Record Opener ‘Disaster Artist’ and ‘The Shape of Water’ Lead Specialty Box Office Surge
The hits keep on coming. Both “The Disaster Artist” (A24) and “The Shape of Water” (Fox Searchlight) opened strong, despite the usual strong-fall off in post-Thanksgiving audiences. Last year the month of November saw only one specialized release, “Manchester By the Sea,” pull an opening platform per theater average over $60,000. This year has already seen five.

The Disaster Artist” (in 11 markets) showed the best performance in New York/Los Angeles of any title this year (nearly $120,000 per theater), besting last weekend’s numbers for “Call Me By Your Name” (Sony Pictures Classics). They join other Oscar-bound strong openers including “Lady Bird” (A24) and “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Fox Searchlight).

This marks unprecedented strength over such a short period, with “Lady Bird” and “Three Billboards” already performing well in wider release. At some point exhibitors are going to be challenged to handle so many hits (all will not go wide
See full article at Indiewire »

Santa Barbara Film Fest: 'Victoria and Abdul' Star Judi Dench Receives Kirk Douglas Award

Santa Barbara Film Fest: 'Victoria and Abdul' Star Judi Dench Receives Kirk Douglas Award
There is nothing like a dame!

Dame Judi Dench, the legendary British actress who is currently vying for her eighth Oscar nomination, for her performance as Queen Victoria in Stephen Frears' Victoria and Abdul, was feted with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival's Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film on Thursday night at a black-tie gala dinner.

The event, which took place at the Bacara Resort and Spa near Santa Barbara, with all proceeds going to Sbiff's free year-round educational programs, featured tributes to the 82-year-old from her admirer Jeff Bridges, her J. Edgar costar (and this...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Mister Rogers Documentary Gets Summer 2018 Release Date

Focus Features has acquired the worldwide rights to Won't You Be My Neighbor, the new documentary about the life and work of Mister Fred Rogers. From Academy Award-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville (20 Feet from Stardom), the documentary is a Focus Features presentation of a Tremolo Production, in association with Impact Partners and Independent Lens/PBS. It is set to be released on June 8, 2018. Focus chairman Peter Kujawski made the announcement today, with the following statement.

"Morgan once again avoids making a traditional biodoc and instead takes us behind the curtain to see how Fred Rogers navigated the cultural and social issues of the second half of the twentieth century with his own brand of forward-thinking, compassionate wisdom far beyond his time. Mister Rogers makes us all want to be better people, and we couldn't be more proud to be a part of telling his story today."

Won't You Be My Neighbor?
See full article at MovieWeb »

Paul Thomas Anderson Unveils Daniel Day-Lewis Fashion Romance ‘Phantom Thread’

Paul Thomas Anderson Unveils Daniel Day-Lewis Fashion Romance ‘Phantom Thread’
“I’m a f—ing movie director — I don’t know anything about obsession,” filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson said sarcastically after the first Stateside screening of his new film “Phantom ThreadFriday night.

Indeed, the six-time Oscar nominee’s latest work does revolve around that very concept, which has been famously explored by masters like Alfred Hitchcock. Anderson even boldly name-checked Hitchcock’s “Rebecca” and “Vertigo” as touchstones. But there’s also a dash of reflexive cinema in there; if you define a film as the manifestation of a single vision by an army of artisans at the whim of a sovereign, well, that’s exactly what Anderson has explored here, albeit within the context of 1950s London couture.

Phantom Thread” stars Daniel Day-Lewis as Reynolds Woodcock, an esteemed fashion designer of the era whose world is up-ended by the arrival of Alma (Vicky Krieps), a forthright woman not content to simply play the part of the
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ and ‘Mudbound’ Vie Against Fall Box Office Hits

  • Indiewire
‘Roman J. Israel, Esq.’ and ‘Mudbound’ Vie Against Fall Box Office Hits
Leading fall Oscar contenders “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Fox Searchlight) and “Lady Bird” (A24) continue to pull crowds as they both expand after limited openings. They are the top performers by far among specialized films this weekend, including the platform debut of “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” (Sony).

The Denzel Washington legal drama had a modest debut in four New York/Los Angeles theaters before its wider release on Wednesday. The fate of Dee Rees’ acclaimed “Mudbound” (Netflix) is the compelling story of the weekend. The ’40s southern farm drama opened in a handful of big city theaters parallel to its home-viewing debut, with grosses unreported by Netflix. We are estimating its performance based on limited indications from several theaters.

Also getting strong reviews for its New York-Los Angeles debut, the Chilean Oscar submission “The Fantastic Woman” (Sony Pictures Classics) opened for a qualifying week with no grosses reported. It
See full article at Indiewire »

Genre, Indie and Blockbuster Directors Jostle for Awards Attention

Genre, Indie and Blockbuster Directors Jostle for Awards Attention
From Paul Thomas Anderson to Guillermo del Toro to Patty Jenkins, a wide variety of directors across genres are vying for attention this awards season.

Paul Thomas Anderson

“The Phantom Thread

Not a frame of Anderson’s latest has yet been seen by the public, nor is much known about it, but he’s the rare filmmaker whose name alone can stoke anticipation. The fact that this 1950s-set film about the fashion world also stars Daniel Day-Lewis, who plans to retire from acting, only piques interest further.

Darren Aronofsky

Mother!”

Easily the most divisive studio film of 2017, and presumably intentionally so, Aronofsky’s “Mother!” could curry favor among his fellow directors for the sheer boldness of his vision, as he and star Jennifer Lawrence ascend ever-escalating levels of madness.

Sean Baker

The Florida Project

An indie darling du jour thanks to his sleeper “Tangerine,” Baker returned with yet another warm, sly-humored study of
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Industry Veterans Found New Castle Productions

Veteran sales and distribution executives Lyndon Golin, Peter Elson, and Ray Price have joined forces to launch New Castle Pictures.

The new U.S.-based distribution company will specialize in independent English-language and foreign language films with commercial appeal and plan to release four to six films in its first year in top DMAs and on VOD platforms. will allow producers an aggressive participation in the producers’ USA deals by offering P&A guarantees, gross revenue shares and the opportunity to become partners in the distribution of their films.

“Ncp is foremost focused on theatrical release and success, and our vision is to aggressively acquire and market unique titles suited for a specialty theatrical run,” Elson said.

Golin, who currently serves as president and is one of the co-founder of Regency Theatres, will serve as chairman of New Castle Pictures. He has also worked in distribution for companies like Universal Pictures, MGM/UA, and Hollywood.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Victoria & Abdul’ Author On Her Book’s Savory Beginnings – The Contenders London Video

‘Victoria & Abdul’ Author On Her Book’s Savory Beginnings – The Contenders London Video
The basis for Stephen Frears’ historical drama Victoria & Abdul is Shrabani Basu’s book of the same name. It stemmed, most improbably, from a side project in which the author was investigating the history of curries — something she relayed at Deadline’s inaugural The Contenders London. “I knew that Queen Victoria liked her curries, and she had some Indian servants, but it was only on a trip to the Isle of Wight, to the Osborne house” that the author understood the true…
See full article at Deadline »

Gary Oldman to Receive Variety Award at British Independent Film Awards

Gary Oldman to Receive Variety Award at British Independent Film Awards
Gary Oldman is to receive this year’s Variety Award at the British Independent Film Awards on Dec. 10. The award recognizes a director, actor, writer or producer who has made a global impact and helped to focus the international spotlight on the U.K.

Previous recipients of the award include Benedict Cumberbatch, Jude Law, Kenneth Branagh, Keira Knightley, Liam Neeson, Paul Greengrass, Daniel Craig, Helen Mirren, Kate Winslet and Naomie Harris, who was last year’s honoree.

Steven Gaydos, Variety’s Vice President and Executive Editor, said: “In the 30 years since Gary Oldman galvanized global film audiences with his portrayal of punk rocker Sid Vicious in ‘Sid and Nancy,’ Oldman has blazed a path as one of international cinema’s most versatile and valued actors. From blockbusters to American indie classics and U.K. masterworks, Oldman has been a force of nature who’s brought life to a stunning variety of characters across all genres of film
See full article at Variety - Film News »

A Look at Some of the Top Oscar Best Picture Contenders in 2017

It’s the most unpredictable Oscar race in memory, with no clear frontrunner established and dozens of films vying for the top prize. We look at some of the films that could take home the gold.

All the Money in the World

Dec. 8 Sony

Kevin Spacey stars as tycoon John Paul Getty in this historical drama piece directed by Ridley Scott. The film explores the internal conflicts of the family in the wake of the kidnapping of Getty’s grandson. While the mother (Michelle Williams) would do anything to get her boy back, Getty’s priority remains his business and fortune.

Baby Driver

June 28 Sony

Edgar Wright struck gold with his audacious tale about a getaway driver who falls for a sweet waitress, only to get sucked into another dangerous heist. Whether one of the best-reviewed films of the year can translate into awards buzz remains to be seen, but it shouldn’t be underestimated.

Battle of the Sexes

Sept
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Gotham Awards Analysis: ‘Get Out’ Is a Serious Awards Season Contender, ‘Wonder Wheel’ Is Shut Out, and More

Gotham Awards Analysis: ‘Get Out’ Is a Serious Awards Season Contender, ‘Wonder Wheel’ Is Shut Out, and More
The Gotham Awards aren’t exactly Oscar prognosticators, but a nomination builds early momentum for the long haul ahead; being left out at this stage is not good. Jordan Peele’s box-office hit “Get Out,” which led the field with four nominations (read full nominations list here), affirmed its status as a serious player. So did three hot fall festival contenders that received three nominations each: Greta Gerwig’s “Lady Bird” (A24) and Luca Guadagnino’s “Call Me by Your Name” (Sony Pictures Classics), both upcoming, and Sean Baker’s “The Florida Project” (A24), which is now in limited release.

Read More:2017 Gotham Awards Nominations: ‘Get Out’ Leads Pack, ‘Lady Bird’ and ‘Call Me by Your Name’ Also Break Out

Dee Rees’ “Mudbound” landed a special jury prize for ensemble performance. That’s significant, because while the Netflix Sundance pickup played well at festivals, its large and superb cast, much like Best Picture winner “Spotlight,
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Gotham Awards Analysis: ‘Get Out’ Is a Serious Awards Season Contender, ‘Wonder Wheel’ Is Shut Out, and More

Gotham Awards Analysis: ‘Get Out’ Is a Serious Awards Season Contender, ‘Wonder Wheel’ Is Shut Out, and More
The Gotham Awards aren’t exactly Oscar prognosticators, but a nomination builds early momentum for the long haul ahead; being left out at this stage is not good. Jordan Peele’s box-office hit “Get Out,” which led the field with four nominations (read full nominations list here), affirmed its status as a serious player. So did three hot fall festival contenders that received three nominations each: Greta Gerwig’s “Lady Bird” (A24) and Luca Guadagnino’s “Call Me by Your Name” (Sony Pictures Classics), both upcoming, and Sean Baker’s “The Florida Project” (A24), which is now in limited release.

Read More:2017 Gotham Awards Nominations: ‘Get Out’ Leads Pack, ‘Lady Bird’ and ‘Call Me by Your Name’ Also Break Out

Dee Rees’ “Mudbound” landed a special jury prize for ensemble performance. That’s significant, because while the Netflix Sundance pickup played well at festivals, its large and superb cast, much like Best Picture winner “Spotlight,
See full article at Indiewire »

Eddie Izzard to Star in Australian Comedy 'The Call Back'

British actor and comedian Eddie Izzard has signed on to star in The Call Back, the feature debut of producer turned writer/director Marion Pilowsky.

Fresh from his turn as Bertie, Prince of Wales  in Stephen Frears Victoria & Abdul, Izzard will play British actor Henry, who is romantically entangled with struggling restaurateur Ronnie, who will be played by Australian Emily Taheny. Also joining the cast of The Call Back are French actress Vanessa Guide (The New Adventures of Aladdin), Luke McKenzie (Wentworth), Hugh Sheridan (Packed to the Rafters), Tina Bursill (Wish You Were Here), Susie Youssef (How Not To Behave) and Tiriel Mora (Happy Feet).

...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Morelia: Toons Bookend 15th Annual Morelia International Film Festival

Morelia: Toons Bookend 15th Annual Morelia International Film Festival
Animation pics are bookending the Morelia International Film Festival for the first time in its 15-year history. Pixar Animation Studios’ latest opus, “Coco,” no less, receives its world premiere in Morelia on opening night, October 20, while Carlos Carrera’s “Ana & Bruno” marks its Latin American premiere when it wraps the fest on October 28.

Set in Mexico and against the country’s most important annual event, the Day of the Dead, “Coco” is an apt choice as Morelia and the nearby lakeside village of Patzcuaro are particularly renowned for their Day of the Dead festivities. Since the festival usually ends close to the eve of the holiday, some guests have stayed on to witness the pageantry.

Snagging the world premiere of Pixar’s latest animated feature began some two years ago when festival director Daniela Michel met Pixar Chief Creative officer John Lasseter at the Lumière Festival in Lyon where Lasseter told her that Pixar’s next project
See full article at Variety - Film News »

In the Aftermath of Harvey Weinstein, Can We Separate the Art from the Artist? — IndieWire Critics Survey

In the Aftermath of Harvey Weinstein, Can We Separate the Art from the Artist? — IndieWire Critics Survey
Every week, IndieWire asks a select handful of film critics two questions and publishes the results on Monday. (The answer to the second, “What is the best film in theaters right now?”, can be found at the end of this post.)

This week’s question: In the aftermath of the Harvey Weinstein story and all that it involves — as people reconsider their relationship to the Miramax films of the ’90s (or don’t) and brace for a new Woody Allen movie, etc. — we return to an age-old question that could always stand to be asked anew: How should the backstory of a film and / or its makers impact the way we receive it?

Kate Erbland (@katerbland), IndieWire

When horrifying accusations like the ones waged against Harvey Weinstein come to light, it’s very easy to scream for a boycott and move on (and, as we often see in cases like these,
See full article at Indiewire »
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