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21-28 of 28 items from 2008   « Prev | Next »


Oscars 2009: Predictions for Best Picture

4 April 2008 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- Best Picture         Predictions: The Five Noms: Australia (20th Century Fox) Prod: G. Mac Brown, Catherine Knapman, Baz LuhrmannThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Warner Bros) Prod: Ceán Chaffin, Kathleen Kennedy and Frank MarshallFrost/Nixon (Universal Pictures) Prod: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Brian Grazer and Ron HowardMilk (Focus Features) Prod: Bruce Cohen, Dan Jinks and Michael LondonRevolutionary Road (Paramount Vantage) Prod: Bobby Cohen, John Hart, Sam Mendes, Scott Rudin From the sure bets to dark horse possibilities, for the Best Picture noms, I've broken down my predictions into three groups - making for a huge family of films, that as the year comes to an end, will be easily interchangeable. By the looks of it, the 2008 film year should see both studio and specialty films share top billing on Oscar night. Among the heavyweights, my grouping of three includes two regulars and as last year confirmed, a major underdog. I'll »

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Working Title, Wright ink two-picture deal

3 April 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

LONDON -- U.K. production label Working Title Films, backed by Universal Pictures, has signed a two-picture deal with filmmaker Edgar Wright.

Wright is one half of the writing team with Simon Pegg behind titles Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz.

The two-picture deal kicks off with Baby Driver, billed as "a wild spin on the action and crime genre" which will be set in the U.S.

The second, The World's End will be co-written with Pegg and will be another comedy outing in the vein of Dead and Fuzz.

Both projects will be produced by Working Title in association with Big Talk Productions with Big Talk's Nira Park producing alongside WT's Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner. »

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Oscar Crystal Ball: Who Should and Who Will Win

24 February 2008 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- I don't think the crystal ball is that clouded this year...but the Oscar pools do end up getting a jolt. My picks aren't off the charts (only minor gamble is in the Best Actress category) - I'm thinking that the major PR campaign by Marion will reap the benefits. Below you'll find all the categories - personal opinion and predictions will be followed by Oscar winner commentary in tonite's blog...Enjoy! Best Picture         "Atonement" (Focus Features) A Working Title Production Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Paul Webster, Producers"Juno" (Fox Searchlight) A Dancing Elk Pictures, LLC Production Lianne Halfon, Mason Novick and Russell Smith, Producers"Michael Clayton" (Warner Bros.) A Clayton Productions, LLC Production Sydney Pollack, Jennifer Fox and Kerry Orent, Producers"No Country for Old Men" (Miramax and Paramount Vantage) A Scott Rudin/Mike Zoss Production Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers"There Will Be Blood »

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Definitely, Maybe

11 February 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Scintillating romantic comedy is the holy grail that everyone in Hollywood dreams of capturing. Producers Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner have achieved some success reinvigorating classic formulas in their English comedies including Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill.

But in crossing the pond for their latest effort, Definitely, Maybe, they run into some problems. Writer-director Adam Brooks ("Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason") doesn't have the knack for the genre demonstrated by the masters. Opening on Valentine's Day, the film hopes to tap the date crowd, but it falls somewhere between a mass audience crowd-pleaser and a literate class act. Business will be middling but not spectacular.

Yet the film is far from a complete washout, and this is chiefly a tribute to its immensely attractive and appealing cast. Ryan Reynolds proves to have the stuff of a true leading man. He plays disgruntled ad man Will Hayes, who receives divorce papers in the movie's opening scene. He goes to pick up his daughter Maya ("Little Miss Sunshine's" Abigail Breslin) at school, where she has just attended her first sex education class and has a million questions for her befuddled dad.

Maya's discovery of sex prompts her to ask Will how he met and fell and love with her mother. Instead of giving her a straightforward answer, Will recounts his romantic involvement with three women: college sweetheart Emily (Elizabeth Banks), flaky co-worker April (Isla Fisher) and aspiring journalist Summer (Rachel Weisz). He frames his history as something of a mystery that Maya will have to solve: Which of the three women became his wife, and which of the three is his true soulmate?

The answer to the first question is not immediately apparent, but the answer to the second is clear because Fisher has top billing and the most screen time. It's also clear because Fisher and Reynolds have the kind of sizzling chemistry that defines all the memorable movie couples. This film is a great showcase for both of them.

Will is an unusual romantic hero in that he spends most of the movie being dumped instead of conquering women. Considering that Reynolds has the looks to be a superstar, it's a shrewd decision for him to play against that and come across as awkward and even dorky in his pursuit of women. His lack of confidence in his sexual prowess makes him even more endearing.

Fisher, best known for her role in Wedding Crashers, is absolutely irresistible. She, too, seems frazzled and rumpled rather than glamorous. April is the kind of no-nonsense, down-to-earth woman who always has been the mainstay of romantic comedy. Fisher actually seems to be channeling Jean Arthur or Claudette Colbert.

Weisz and Banks are ravishing enough to make the contest among the three women viable, though Banks' role is underdeveloped, and even Weisz could use some meatier scenes. (A bland montage that shows Summer and Will falling in love doesn't do the trick.)

Kevin Kline has a sharp cameo as the drunk writer who is Summer's mentor and lover. But a lot of the other supporting players don't really have enough to do. Even Breslin is reduced to little more than a sounding-board until the very last scenes, when she finally gets to play a more active role in Will's search for fulfillment.

The film begins in 1992, when Will goes to work for Bill Clinton's campaign for president, and an entertaining subplot concerns Will's disillusionment with Clinton during the course of the '90s. But the evocation of the era is fairly lackluster. Cinematographer Florian Ballhaus does capture the allure of Manhattan, though the editing by Peter Teschner lets the picture drag on too long.

The bigger problem is that the romantic banter between Will and his three paramours strains for sparkling wit and only occasionally achieves it. In addition, the script cries out for the kind of clever plotting that distinguished such movies as It Happened One Night and "Adam's Rib." Is it impossible for today's writers to match the urbanity of Samson Raphaelson or Donald Ogden Stewart or Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin?

Such performers as Reynolds and Fisher might rank with Gable and Lombard or Tracy and Hepburn, but we'll never know until they get the crack scripts that helped to turn an earlier generation of actors into legends.

DEFINITELY, MAYBE

Universal

Working Title, StudioCanal

Credits:

Screenwriter-director: Adam Brooks

Producers: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner

Executive producers: Liza Chasin, Bobby Cohen

Co-executive producer: Kerry Orent

Director of photography: Florian Ballhaus

Production designer: Stephanie Carroll

Music: Clint Mansell

Costume designer: Gary Jones

Editor: Peter Teschner

Cast:

Will Hayes: Ryan Reynolds

April: Isla Fisher

Maya Hayes: Abigail Breslin

Russell McCormack: Derek Luke

Emily: Elizabeth Banks

Summer Hartley: Rachel Weisz

Hampton Roth: Kevin Kline

Gareth: Adam Ferrara

Arthur Robredo: Nestor Serrano

Running time -- 110 minutes

MPAA rating: PG-13

»

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Top 100 Most Anticipated Films of 2008: #2 Burn After Reading

1 February 2008 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- #2. Burn After Reading Director/Writer: Ethan Coen and Joel Coen Producers: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and the Coens. Distributor: Focus Features The Gist: The Coen Bros. script is loosely based on the novel "Burn Before Reading: Presidents, CIA Directors, and Secret Intelligence," by Admiral Stansfield Turner, who served as director of the CIA from 1977 to 1981. The contemporary East Coast caper is about a CIA agent who is writing a book and he loses the disc. Fact: Deakins was replaced by Children of Men's Emmanuel Lubezki (cinematographer). See It: Coens are coming off the success No Country for Old Men and check out the list of talent in this one: Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Tilda Swinton, John Malkovich and of course, Frances McDormand. Release Date/Status?: Expect a Cannes film festival release and a year end placement from Focus that will not go up against their other titles.   »

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Top 100 Most Anticipated Films of 2008: #23 Frost/Nixon

31 January 2008 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- #23. Frost/Nixon Director: Ron HowardWriters: Peter Morgan Producers: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Brian Grazer and Howard Distributor: Universal Pictures The Gist: The play is based on a series of televised interviews that David Frost secured with former President Nixon in 1977. The final interview ended with Nixon tacitly admitting his guilt regarding his role in the Watergate scandal. Fact: Actors Frank Langella and Michael Sheen were part of the Broadway show version. See It: History buffs and those who enjoyed Good Night and Good Luck are sure to enjoy this project which will be reelased at the same time that the current president leaves house. Release Date/Status?: This is most likely going to be Universal's choice pic for Oscar race contention. Expect year-end unveiling.   »

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Bafta Noms Announced: Atonement the film to beat?

17 January 2008 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- Like what had occurred over at the Golden Globes, it comes as no surprise that the Brits backed homegrown Joe Wright period piece of Atonement. Picking up a grand total of 14 nominees, the BAFTAs also gave There Will Be Blood, No Country for Old Men and Michael Clayton to celebrate. See the complete list below to see how they do things on the other side of the Atlantic. The full list of nominations follows:film“American Gangster” — Brian Grazer/Ridley ScottAtonement” — Tim Bevan/Eric Fellner/Paul Webster“The Lives of Others” — Quirin Berg/Max WiedemannNo Country for Old Men” — Scott Rudin/Joel Coen/Ethan CoenThere Will Be Blood” — JoAnne Sellar/Paul Thomas Anderson/Daniel LupiBRITISH Film“Atonement” — Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Paul Webster, Joe Wright, Christopher HamptonThe Bourne Ultimatum” — Frank Marshall, Patrick Crowley, Paul L. Sandberg, Paul Greengrass, Tony Gilroy, Scott Z. Burns, George Nolfi“Control” — Orian Williams, »

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'Atonement' leads BAFTA noms

17 January 2008 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

LONDON -- Joe Wright's "Atonement" leads the field of nominations for this year's British Academy Film Awards, securing 14 noms, ahead of the Coen brothers' "No Country for Old Men" and Paul Thomas Anderson's "There Will Be Blood", both of which took nine slots.

The trio of titles are all in the race for the best film award along with Ridley Scott's "American Gangster" and last year's foreign-language Oscar winner Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's "The Lives of Others". Both "Gangster" and "Others" scored five nominations.

Wright, Joel and Ethan Coen, Anderson and Henckel von Donnersmark also will battle it out with Paul Greengrass for the evening's best director nod, with Greengrass nominated for "The Bourne Ultimatum".

The best British film award, one of 23 awards dished out by the British Academy of Film and Television, will go to one from "Atonement", "Ultimatum", "Control", "Eastern Promises" and "This Is England".

George Clooney ("Michael Clayton"), Daniel Day-Lewis ("There Will Be Blood"), James McAvoy ("Atonement"), Viggo Mortensen ("Eastern Promises") and Ulrich Muehe ("The Lives of Others") all secure nominations for best actor.

Cate Blanchett has two nominations, for leading actress in "Elizabeth: The Golden Age" and supporting actress in "I'm Not There".

Blanchett will have to triumph over Julie Christie ("Away From Her"), Marion Cotillard ("La Vie en Rose"), Keira Knightley ("Atonement") and Ellen Page ("Juno") to secure the best actress nod.

And Kelly Macdonald ("No Country"), Samantha Morton ("Control"), Saoirse Ronan ("Atonement") and Tilda Swinton ("Michael Clayton") might have something to say in the supporting actress race.

Javier Bardem and Tommy Lee Jones (both for "No Country"), Paul Dano ("Blood"), Philip Seymour Hoffman ("Charlie Wilson's War") and Tom Wilkinson ("Michael Clayton") are slugging it out for supporting actor.

The prize for best animated film will be drawn by "Ratatouille", "Shrek the Third" or "The Simpsons Movie".

Nominations for the Carl Foreman Award for special achievement by a British director, writer or producer in their first feature include Chris Atkins for writing and directing the documentary "Taking Liberties", Mia Bays for her producer role on documentary "Scott Walker: 30 Century Man", Sarah Gavron for helming "Brick Lane", Matt Greenhalgh for penning "Control" and Andrew Piddington for writing and directing "The Killing of John Lennon".

The original screenplay prize is a contest between Steven Zailian ("American Gangster"), Diablo Cody ("Juno"), Henckel von Donnersmarck ("Lives of Others"), Tony Gilroy ("Michael Clayton") and Shane Meadows ("This Is England").

Nominations for adapted screenplay are Christopher Hampton ("Atonement"), Ronald Harwood ("The Diving Bell and the Butterfly"), David Benioff ("The Kite Runner"), the Coens ("No Country") and Anderson ("Blood").

The winners will be announced Feb. 10 at London's Royal Opera House.

A complete list of nominations follows:

Best film

"American Gangster" -- Brian Grazer/Ridley Scott

"Atonement" -- Tim Bevan/Eric Fellner/Paul Webster

"The Lives of Others" -- Quirin Berg/Max Wiedemann

"No Country for Old Men" -- Scott Rudin/Joel Coen/Ethan Coen

"There Will Be Blood" -- JoAnne Sellar/Paul Thomas Anderson/Daniel Lupi

British film

"Atonement" -- Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Paul Webster, Joe Wright, Christopher Hampton

"The Bourne Ultimatum" -- Frank Marshall, Patrick Crowley, Paul L. »

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21-28 of 28 items from 2008   « Prev | Next »


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