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Damian Szifron’s “Wild Tales,” which was nominated for a foreign language film Oscar in the 2014 Academy Awards race, snagged 10 nominations for the second annual Premios Platino of Iberoamerican Cinema, followed by Ernesto Daranas’ teacher-pupil Cuban drama “Conducta” and Spain’s crime thriller “La Isla Minima” by Alberto Rodriguez, which grabbed nine each.
All three pics are nominated for best Iberoamerican feature along with Alvaro Brechner’s “Mr. Kaplan” (Uruguay) and Venezuelan Mariana Rondon’s “Pelo Malo.” The helmers of all five pics are also nominated for director prizes.
A record-busting 760 pics qualified for this year’s awards, evidence of robust film production activity across Spain, Portugal and especially Latin America. From the initial list, 30 pics made the final cut, selected from 13 of the 23 countries of Iberoamerica.
The ceremony will be held in the coastal town of Marbella, Spain, on Oct. 18.
At the press event Wednesday, thesp Kate del Castillo »
- Anna Marie de la Fuente
Over the last decade, Quebec filmmaker Denis Villeneuve has made a mix of hard-hitting and compelling films, from his sombre take on a Montreal school shooting in Polytechnique to his Oscar nominated 2010 drama Incendies. Denis released two films in 2013 that both starred Jake Gyllenhaal: the experimental and brash Enemy, which provided a surreal and haunting look at a spousal relationship; and Prisoners, a kidnapping drama with Hugh Jackman, Viola Davis, and Melissa Leo joining the fray.
Villeneuve’s latest film may well be his best yet (he certainly thinks it is). Sicario is a richly drawn story about the moral ambivalence at the heart of the war on drugs. Emily Blunt plays Kate Macer, a seasoned FBI agent, who takes on the cartels directly with the assistance of a team led by Matt (Josh Brolin). Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro), a mercurial figure with a sordid past, also joins Kate »
- Jason Gorber
With Harrison Ford back as Rick Deckard, Denis Villeneuve in the director's chair, and Ryan Gosling eyeing a key role, the Blade Runner sequel was already in good hands, but now fans have another big reason to get excited, as it was recently announced that cinematographer Roger Deakins joined the film's crew:
Press Release (via The Playlist) -- "Los Angeles, CA, May, 20, 2015 – Twelve-time Academy Award-nominated cinematographer Roger Deakins will join director Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Incendies) on Alcon Entertainment’s sequel to Blade Runner, it was announced by Alcon co-founders and co-ceo’s Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson.
Deakins, who will be presented with the Pierre Angénieux Excellens in Cinematography Award at the Cannes Film Festival on May 22 reteams with Villeneuve on what will be their third feature collaboration, havingpreviously worked together on Alcon’s Prisoners, starring Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal as well as Villeneuve’s upcoming film Sicario, a drug-trafficking drama starring Emily Blunt, »
- Derek Anderson
'The Contender' movie hero: Joan Allen as the virtuous Sen. Laine Hanson. 'The Contender' movie: Exceptional Joan Allen in intriguing but ultimately wimpy political drama "Principles only mean anything when we stick by them when they're inconvenient," says Senator Laine Hanson, played by Joan Allen in Rod Lurie's The Contender. Senator Hanson should know. In Lurie's political drama, the poor Democratic senator is grilled by a Republican inquisitor with a bad hairdo (Gary Oldman) who wants to prevent at all costs her being confirmed as the next Vice President of the United States. Even if that means destroying Hanson's political career by making public the senator's alleged participation in an orgy during her college days.* Now, why such hatred? Well, the Republican watchdog is certain that the U.S. president (Jeff Bridges) has chosen Sen. Hanson because of her gender instead of her qualifications for the job. Adding insult to injury, »
- Andre Soares
Variety critics Scott Foundas, Justin Chang, Peter Debruge, Guy Lodge, Jay Weissberg and Maggie Lee weighed in with their choices for the 21 best films at this year’s Cannes Film Festival (listed in alphabetical order):
1. “Amy.” British director Asif Kapadia followed up his 2010 “Senna” with this even more daring and revealing portrait of the brilliant but tragic jazz diva Amy Winehouse. Drawing on a wealth of professional and user-generated video, Kapadia again eschews the usual talking-heads interview format to keep WInehouse front and center for two harrowing hours, during which we come to understand how thoroughly the troubled singer lived her life under the camera’s relentless and unforgiving gaze. The result is an unforgettable portrait of the cult of celebrity in the iPhone era. (Scott Foundas)
- Variety Staff
Cannes — Awards season is no stranger to Cannes. From "Amour" to "The Tree of Life" to "No Country For Old Men" to "The Pianist" to "The Piano," every year there seems to be a player or two that pokes its head out from the crowded Croisette and into Oscar's waiting arms. This year's potential players may not include a true Best Picture contender, but they are evidence enough that the festival's presence will be felt throughout the upcoming campaign. Before you start second guessing which films have a shot and which don't, remember the actions of this year's Hollywood-influenced competition jury. The Coen brothers, Jake Gyllenhaal, Sienna Miller and the Guillermo Del Toro, among others, awarded some interesting prizes that will absolutely affect the race. The critical kudos are important, too (as are those of us who cover the beat on a regular basis and took in this year's slate »
- Gregory Ellwood
We’ll soon be seeing a lot more of Thanos in the Marvel Cinematic Universe when the Mad Titan takes centre stage for Avengers: Infinity War, but in the meantime we’ve had to make do with his post-credits scenes in The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron, as well as a brief appearance in Guardians of the Galaxy.
While we await his next appearance (Thor: Ragnarok?), the folks at Luma Pictures have posted a featurette which delves into the VFX work that went into bringing Thanos to life for Guardians of the Galaxy, and you can check it out here (via ComicBook)…
“Loic Zimmermann our concept designer took the most prevalent features of Josh Brolin that we thought would stand out the most and put them into who the character is underneath,” Luma Pictures VFX supervisor Vincent Cirelli tells FX Guide. “He began blending those elements. We’ve taken Josh’s eyes, »
- Gary Collinson
Warner Bros. Pictures/Paramount Pictures
It’s impossible to not compare The Little Prince to Inside Out. Both premiered Out of Competition at Cannes and, in something that’s become a festival theme, both are about memories, with direct focus on the transition from childhood to adulthood. And so while The Little Prince is a well-intentioned, sometimes touching, always beautiful animated treat, it can’t help but be the weaker film in comparison to Pixar’s festival appearance.
Based on the French children’s book about love and life, told through the abstract meeting of a small boy and a crashed pilot in the desert, Mark Osborne has made one of the most out-there animated films to get a wider release in years. It’s a better, more measured film than his previous Kung Fu Panda (which you have to hope he only did to get to make this »
- Alex Leadbeater
I've done my best to avoid reactions to most everything playing at the Cannes Film Festival if only to keep my own expectations in check and one of the movies I'm doing my very best to avoid hearing any advanced buzz is Denis Villeneuve's thriller Sicario starring Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin and Benicio del Toro among others. For an added bit of context before you check out the following first clip from the film (via Slashfilm), know the film centers on Kate (Blunt), a young female FBI agent who joins a secret CIA operation to take down a Mexican cartel boss, a job that ends up pushing her ethical and moral values to the limit. The following clip features what must be Kate's first meeting with del Toro's character followed by a bit of tough love from Brolin. Give it a watch below. The film is set for a Sept. »
- Brad Brevet
The first clip for Denis Villeneuve's drug war thriller Sicario has arrived. The film stars Emily Blunt as an idealistic FBI agent enlisted by members of a government task force (Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro) to take out a Mexican cartel boss. Sicario reunites Villeneuve, one of the most promising young directors, with his Prisoners cinematographer, Roger Deakins, one of the greatest living directors of photography, making it one of my most anticipated films of the year. And having seen this clip, I'm even more thrilled by the idea of Villeneuve and Deakins teaming up for Blade Runner 2. As always, Deakins knows exactly what to bring to the table to fulfill the unique needs of each film. Sicario looks austere; a palette of taupe and desert sand with highlights of blue, and a huge contrast to the grey, green frostiness of Prisoners. I truly can't wait to see »
- Haleigh Foutch
Cannes — “The Embrace of the Serpent,” Colombian director Ciro Guerra’s visually rich, black-and-white adventure saga about the ravages of colonialism in the Amazon, won the top Art Cinema Award at the 47th Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes on Friday.
A follow-up to Guerra’s 2009 Un Certain Regard entry, “The Wind Journeys,” “Embrace of the Serpent” (which is being sold by Films Boutique) follows the parallel journeys of two different ethnologists, both searching for a rare flower deemed sacred by Colombia’s indigenous population. Along with Thursday’s honors for the Critics’ Week entries “Paulina” (from Argentina’s Santiago Mitre) and “Land and Shade” (from Colombia’s Cesar Acevedo), the victory for Guerra’s film suggests it’s been a particularly strong festival for Latin American cinema, despite initial concerns that the region might be underrepresented, at least in the official selection.
The Fortnight’s Sacd Prize, presented every year to »
- Justin Chang
Any animated feature screening in Cannes in the wake of Pixar’s universally adored “Inside Out” was bound to seem like an anticlimax. And when the movie in question happens to be an adaptation of one of the most beloved children’s novels of all time, the potential for disappointment looms especially large. But to the sure relief of armchair aviators everywhere, director Mark Osborne’s “The Little Prince” turns out to be a respectful, lovingly reimagined take on Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s classic 1943 tale, which adds all manner of narrative bells and whistles to the author’s slender, lyrical story of friendship between a pilot and a mysterious extraterrestrial voyager, but stays true to its timeless depiction of childhood wonderment at odds with grown-up disillusionment. Independently made (on a reported $80 million budget) by French producer Dimitri Rassam, “The Little Prince” may lack the fast pace and high-concept storytelling of »
- Scott Foundas
Sicario: Bring Out the Popcorn
Directed by Denis Villeneuve
Written by Taylor Sheridan
Denis Villeneuve’s narco-thriller Sicario is likely the most broadly accessible film in this year’s competition, a very watchable, schematically Hollywoodian production more at home at the Oscars than at Cannes. It stars, tragically, Emily Blunt as FBI agent Kate Macer and, unsurprisingly, Benicio Del Toro as special drugs advisor Alejandro. Kate is recruited from her hostage crisis unit to a secretive anti-drugs mission at the margins of legality following a gruesome, finely crafted opening sequence in which she leads the bust of a safe house full of rows of executed hostages concealed into the walls. Gradually she clues in as to the nature of the mission – her role is merely procedural, as the presence of an FBI agent is apparently obligatory as a front for Alejandro and rogue operation head Matt (Josh Brolin »
While we know next to nothing about the plot for the upcoming Blade Runner sequel, we do know that at the very least, it's going to look gorgeous, as renowned cinematographer Roger Deakins has joined the team. Come inside to learn more.
Blade Runner 2 is moving full steam ahead. Just a couple months ago it was announced Denis Villenueve had been hired on to direct the sequel, with Harrison Ford set to return, and it looks like they're starting to build up the rest of the necessary behind the scenes crew to get production moving. Announced at Cannes, Roger Deakins, the cinematographer behind Prisoners, Skyfall, Fargo, and Many others has been hired on as the Dop for the new movie. Deakins has worked with Villenueve on his last two movies, so it shouldn't come as much of a surprise.
The original Blade Runner is still a visually striking movie, and »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jordan Maison)
Deakins will be presented with the Pierre Angénieux Excellens in Cinematography Award at the Cannes Film Festival on May 22. Deakins teamed with Villeneuve on Alcon’s “Prisoners” and “Sicario,” starring Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro, which is in competition at Cannes.
Deakins received his latest Academy Award nomination this year for his work on Angelina Jolie’s “Unbroken.” He was previously nominated for “The Man Who Wasn’t There,” “O Brother, Where Art Thou?,” “No Country for Old Men,” “True Grit,” “The Shawshank Redemption,” “Kundun,” “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford,” “The Reader,” “Prisoners” and “Skyfall.”
- Dave McNary
Sicario’s Emily Blunt [Kate Macer], Benicio del Toro [Alejandro], Josh Brolin [Matt Graver], and Director Denis Villeneuve, walked the Palais des Festivals Red Carpet tonight before the In Competition Screening of Sicario at the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France. In Mexico, Sicario means hitman. In the lawless border area stretching between the U.S. and Mexico, an idealistic FBI agent [Emily Blunt] is enlisted by an elite government task force official [Josh Brolin] to aid in the escalating war against drugs. Led by an enigmatic consultant with a questionable past [Benicio Del Toro], the team sets out on a clandestine journey forcing Kate to question everything that she believes in order to survive. A Lionsgate presentation, a Black Label Media presentation, a Thunder Road production, a Denis Villeneuve film. Sicario opens in the Us in limited release on September 18, 2015, and opens wide on September 25, 2015. Photo courtesy Lionsgate, by Paul Le »
IFC Films has acquired the U.S. rights to WestEnd Films’ “A Perfect Day,” directed by Spanish filmmaker Fernando León de Aranoa. The film, which premiered in Cannes, stars Benicio del Toro, Tim Robbins, Olga Kurylenko, Mélanie Thierry and Fedja Stukan. Set in the Balkans in the mid-’90s, the film follows a group of aid workers as they try to resolve a crisis in an armed conflict zone. León de Aranoa, who co-wrote the script with Diego Farias, also produced under his Reposado banner with Jaume Roures of MediaPro and executive producers Patricia de Muns and Javier Méndez. Also Read: Cannes Report, »
- Matt Donnelly
IFC negotiated the Us rights deal with WestEnd Films. »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
The Company of Wolves: Villeneuve’s Superb Packaging Enhances Customary Cartel Themes
There’s much to be excited about with Sicario, the latest film from Quebecois director Denis Villeneuve, a dark, brooding thriller at times drenched and dripping with intense dread. Applying a similar enhanced style to the pulpy origins of the child kidnapping film Prisoners in 2013, Villeneuve is extremely adept at morphing familiar tropes into fresh presentation. However, those hungering for more than a nicely dressed endeavor may be disappointed to find Taylor Sheridan’s screenplay to be lacking in certain regards, sacrificing character development at the cost of providing audiences with realizations on corruption they already know.
We’re informed up front Sicario is a word hailing from ancient Jerusalem, applied to those that hunted Romans, but today the word means hitman in Mexico. Enter FBI agent Kate Macy (Emily Blunt), head of a unit specializing in kidnapping, »
- Nicholas Bell
Read More: Cannes Review: Bosnian Aid Worker Comedy 'A Perfect Day' Starring Benicio Del Toro, Tim Robbins & Olga Kurylenko IFC Films has announced that the company is acquiring U.S. rights to Fernando León de Aranoa's "A Perfect Day" out of the Cannes Film Festival. The film, directed by León de Aranoa and written by him in collaboration with Diego Farias, stars Benicio del Toro, Tim Robbins, Olga Kurylenko, Mélanie Thierry and Fedja Stukan. The official synopsis reads: "A group of aid workers tries to resolve a crisis in an armed conflict zone: Sophie (Thierry) is a newcomer, she wants to help; Mambrú (Del Toro) has seen it all and wants to go home; Katya (Kurylenko) once wanted Mambrú; Damir (Stukan) wants the war to end, and B (Robbins) doesn't know what he wants. Humor, drama, emotion, routine, danger, hope: it all fits in a perfect day. »
- Casey Cipriani
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