14 items from 2015
After years of involvement with the project, Harry Potter actress Emma Watson has been officially cast as Belle in Disney’s upcoming Beauty and the Beast adaptation, to be directed by Bill Condon (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn) from a script by Stephen Chbosky, who previously directed Watson in The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
Watson was previously attached to a Warner Bros. adaptation of the classic fairy tale back when Guillermo del Toro was set to direct, but she fell off at the same time that helmer departed. Since then, that studio’s take has hit some significant stumbling blocks, but as Disney locked in Condon and began to search for actresses for its own take on the story, Watson’s name came up again. One source states that Disney believes Watson will be “perfect” for the part and was thrilled to court her.
Following TheWrap’s scoop on the story, »
- Isaac Feldberg
Bill Condon (“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn”) will direct from a script written by Stephen Chbosky, who directed Watson in “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” Evan Spiliotopoulos wrote the previous draft of the screenplay.
Also Read: Emma Watson Speaks Out for Feminism and Against Man-Hating at Un (Video)
- Jeff Sneider
Logan Miller, "Take Me to the River" and "The Stanford Prison Experiment"Despite being only in his teens, actor Logan Miller has already done more than most actors twice his age. Credits include small roles in "Ghosts of Girlfriends Past" opposite Matthew McConaughey and Sofia Coppola's "The Bling Ring," and in the TV shows "Grimm" and "Children's Hospital." He also has indie cred, having worked with Kelly Reichardt on her last film, "Night Moves." He's now finally poised to break out in a bigger way via two Sundance entries with a lot of buzz surrounding them. First up is Matt Sobel's Next entry "Take Me to the River," in which Miller plays a gay teenager forced to retreat back into the closet when goes to visit his ultra-conservative extended family. He has a smaller part in "The Stanford Prison Experiment," his other film playing at the festival, but his supporting. »
- Nigel M Smith
Longtime participants in the Television Critics Assn. press tour often get hit with a sense of deja vu while covering the twice-yearly marathon of TV gabbery.
NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt had that I’ve-been-here-before feeling as reporters were yakking about the strong debut of Fox’s “Empire.” The show reminded Greenblatt of the drama “Platinum” that he and former producing partner David Janollari shepherded for Upn back in 2003.
The show’s original title was “Empire,” but they couldn’t clear it. And “Empire” star Terrence Howard auditioned for one of the lead roles, Greenblatt recalled.
“Who know our show was so ahead of its time?” he joked.
Like “Empire,” “Platinum” revolved around the drama of the hip-hop music business and a family trying to hold their empire together, and the two shows also came from notable auspices: Lee Daniels and Danny Strong for “Empire,” John Ridley, Sofia Coppola and Francis Ford Coppola for “Platinum. »
- Cynthia Littleton
While DC and Marvel might already have a lock on several future release dates past the 2015 campaign with the Coen Bros. circling February on their calendars, for the most part, when it comes to American independent and foreign film flavored items, 2016 is still cloudy with a chance of…. 2015 just broke (we already have plenty to look forward to (Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films / Top 25 Most Anticipated Studio Films / Top 100 Most Anticipated American Independent Films – soon!) but we’re already excited about what is in store for several of our favorite auteurs. Here are picks 100 to 6, with our Nicholas Bell providing further analysis on current top five for 2016. Pictured above is Peter Strickland, who sits in our number six spot.
100. Untitled Edward Munch Project – Erik Poppe
97. Imagine – Benoit Graffin
- Eric Lavallee
In all 86 years of the Oscars, only four women have been nominated for Best Director: Lina Wertmüller, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola, and Kathryn Bigelow. Many hoped a fifth—Ava DuVernay, who directed the critical favorite Selma—would be added to the list this year, but that didn't happen. Instead, the Best Director contenders are all men. The absence of women in this pool isn't anything new, but a chart published by the New York Times demonstrates just how much men dominate Hollywood even outside the Oscars: According to the data, only 2.4 percent of those nominated for best director since 1990 have »
- Ariana Bacle
While "Selma' merited a Best Picture bid in Thursday's announcement of the Oscar nominations, its helmer -- Ava DuVernay -- was snubbed, sending the Twitterverse into overdrive. But how surprising was this really when you consider that of the 421 nominees for Best Director over the 86 years of the Academy Award, only four have been women. And of this quartet -- Lina Wertmuller ("Seven Beauties," 1976), Jane Campion ("The Piano," 1993), Sofia Coppola ("Lost in Translation") and Kathryn Bigelow ("The Hurt Locker," 2009) -- only the latter prevailed. And even with that Oscar win to her name, Bigelow was the most recent member of a different group of women that DuVernay now joins: directors who were overlooked despite their films contending for the top Oscar. -Break- Related: How did 'Selma' go from Oscars frontrunner to token Best Picture nominee? In the years when there were only fi..." »
The art decoration of “Eva & Leon” is sublime, its impact immediate in the measured static shots of Eva’s chic and huge arrondissement Paris flat, classical in the carefully contrasting tones of white, gray, blue and salmon, setting off of furniture, curtains, drapes, sofas, cushions, gray and walls, high ceilings. A life-size flamingo stands by the mantelpiece. But such luxury is not enough. Eva, 35 (Clotilde Hesme), svelte, a dandy, an flaneur, cultured, immature, no children, absent mother, recluse father, termigant sis, lives a privileged life few can dream of, at least seriously. But, as the film suggests, she needs Leon, 10, an orphan who has escaped from his reception miles away outside France to try to find his birth-mother, to give her life an emotional anchor. Emilie Cherpitel’s film portrays their growing relationship of an odd couple. Distributed in France and sold abroad by Pyramide, one of Europe’s top arthouse production-distribution-sales companies, »
- John Hopewell
Ava DuVernay's snub in the Best Director category for "Selma" at this morning's Oscar nominations is disappointing, but not unprecedented. Prior to DuVernay, eight different women were denied Best Director nominations for movies that garnered Best Picture nominations. They are: 1. Randa Haines, "Children of a Lesser God" (1986) 2. Barbra Streisand, "Prince of Tides" (1991) 3. Valerie Faris (co-director with Jonathan Dayton), "Little Miss Sunshine" (2007) 4. Loveleen Tandan (Danny Boyle's co-director in India; he won the award), "Slumdog Millionaire" (2008) 5. Lone Scherfig, "An Education" (2009) 6. Lisa Cholodenko, "The Kids are All Right" (2010) 7. Debra Granik, "Winter's Bone" (2010) 8. Kathryn Bigelow, "Zero Dark Thirty" (2013) Meanwhile, only four women have actually earned nominations for Best Director in the history of the ceremony: Lina Wertmüller for "Seven Beauties" (1976), Jane Campion for "The Piano" (1993), Sofia Coppola for "Lost in Translation" (2003), and Kathryn Bigelow for "The Hurt Locker" (2009). Bigelow is the only woman to win the award. »
- Louis Virtel
Sales company unveils new films by Donzelli, Sfar, Odoul and Garrel at Paris Rendez-vous.
Wild Bunch will kick off sales on nine new French titles at this year’s Rendez-vous with French Cinema in Paris (Jan 15-19), many of which will be completed in time for a potential Cannes slot, including an incestuous love story by Valérie Donzelli and First World War drama by Damien Odoul.
The company will also show first images of several previously announced productions including Jacques Audiard’s untitled drama revolving around Sri Lankan immigrants in Paris, which it is co-selling with Celluloid Dreams, and Julie Delpy’s France-set romance Lolo, in which she stars as a chic Parisian sophisticate who falls for a geeky It expert played by Dany Boon.
Sundance Institute announced Thursday that the 2015 Sundance Film Festival will take an unprecedented look at the art and craft of filmmaking with its new ‘Art of Film Weekend’ series of offscreen programming.
This year’s festival runs from Jan. 22 to Feb. 1 in Utah, and the Art of Film Weekend (Jan. 29-31) will highlight the unique roles of writers, directors, producers, actors, cinematographers, editors, production designers, art directors, costume designers, casting directors, sound designers, composers and the countless others who bring stories to life on screen.
The series will »
- Jeff Sneider
The Sundance Film Festival announced today that it will hold a series of panels titled the "Art of Film Weekend" which will take place Jan. 29-31. This new initiative should create more buzz worthy moments during a period when the Festival is traditionally winding down. The slate will kick off with a conversation between Festival founder Robert Redford and George Lucas that will be streamed online at Sundance.org. In a release, Festival Director John Cooper noted, "Exploring cinema, body and soul, Art of Film Weekend will take aspiring filmmakers and film-loving audiences behind the scenes to see the creative, collaborative spirit of artists at every stage of the independent filmmaking process that is so core to our Festival." A full rundown of the panels are as follows: Power of Story: Visions of Independence — Kicking off Art of Film Weekend, join Robert Redford and George Lucas—two iconic filmmakers who »
- Gregory Ellwood
A lot of people (read: most people) were left cold by "Drive" director Nicholas Winding Refn's 2013 head-scratcher "Only God Forgives," which is understandable: his second Ryan Gosling collaboration was baffling, queasy, bizarre and occasionally infuriating. But it was also bold and compelling in spots, and so aggressively weird that it felt like a daring next step for a rising director who likely had his pick of mainstream studio projects after the success of "Drive." For his next film - the arrestingly-titled horror movie "The Neon Demon" - Refn will continue marching to the beat of his own drummer alongside new leading lady Elle Fanning, who herself has made some fairly interesting choices recently with films like Sofia Coppola's "Somewhere," Sally Potter's "Ginger & Rosa" and the Joe Albany biopic "Low Down" opposite John Hawkes. Here are five reasons I'm intrigued by the Danish auteur's latest project. 1. Refn is made for the horror genre. »
- Chris Eggertsen
Written by Refn and newcomer Mary Laws, “Neon Demon” is a female-driven horror film that the director’s longtime producing partner Lene Borglum will produce via their Space Rocket banner.
Fanning will play an aspiring model who is caught in a world of beauty and demise.
Also Read: ‘Drive’ Filmmaker Gets Auto-Erotic at Wrap Screening
- Jeff Sneider
14 items from 2015
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