14 items from 2015
Academy invitee Eddie Redmayne in 'The Theory of Everything.' Academy invites 322 new members: 'More diverse and inclusive list of filmmakers and artists than ever before' The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has offered membership to 322 individuals "who have distinguished themselves by their contributions to theatrical motion pictures." According to the Academy's press release, "those who accept the invitations will be the only additions to the Academy's membership in 2015." In case all 322 potential new members say an enthusiastic Yes, that means an injection of new blood representing about 5 percent of the Academy's current membership. In the words of Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs (as quoted in the press release), in 2015 "our branches have recognized a more diverse and inclusive list of filmmakers and artists than ever before, and we look forward to adding their creativity, ideas and experience to our organization." In recent years, the Academy membership has »
- Anna Robinson
©Renzo Piano Building Workshop/©Studio Pali Fekete architects/©A.M.P.A.S.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced this week that the Los Angeles City Council, in a unanimous vote, approved plans for the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. Construction will begin this summer, and ceremonial groundbreaking festivities will occur this fall.
“I am thrilled that Los Angeles is gaining another architectural and cultural icon,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “My office of economic development has worked directly with the museum’s development team to ensure that the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures will create jobs, support tourism, and pay homage to the industry that helped define our identity as the creative capital of the world.”
“We are grateful to our incredible community of supporters who have helped make this museum a reality,” said Dawn Hudson, the Academy’s CEO. “Building this museum has been an Academy »
- Michelle McCue
Strangely dropping a press release on a historic day where the nation's attention is elsewhere, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed their annual list of new member invitees this morning. For those who criticize the makeup of the Academy there was some good news and the stark realization the organization still has a long way to go. The Academy has spent the last eight to 10 years attempting to diversify its membership and this year's class mostly reflects that. There are significantly more invitees of Asian and African-American descent, but the male to female disparity is still depressing. Out of the 25 potential new members of the Actor's Branch only seven are women. And, no, there isn't really an acceptable way for the Academy to spin that sad fact. Additionally, It's important to realize the 322 people noted in the release have only been invited to join Hollywood's most exclusive club. »
- Gregory Ellwood
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences continues to push for diversity, sending membership invitations to 322 individuals, including a healthy number of people who can help change the org’s demos.
Among the invitees are David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Felicity Jones, Emma Stone, Rosamund Pike, Bong Joon-ho, Justin Lin and Francois Ozon. The Academy has been reaching out to women, foreign-born artists and people of various races, ethnic backgrounds and ages.
Accusations of Academy bigotry surfaced yet again in January when the list of Oscar nominees included Caucasians in all 20 acting categories, and few women or racial minorities among the other categories. Director Ava DuVernay and actor David Oyelowo of “Selma” had seemed like strong contenders, giving many people hopes of breakthroughs. After initial anger at the Acad, activists began to shift their protests to industry hiring practices. For example, 323 films were eligible for 2014 awards — which means AMPAS should theoretically »
- Tim Gray
Some critics derided Avengers: Age of Ultron as bloated, bombastic and nonsensical, but Australian moviegoers clearly dismissed or didn.t read the reviews
The Marvel blockbuster directed by Joss Whedon captured $15.7 million last weekend and $17.1 million including Wednesday night previews.
To be fair, the original opened on a Wednesday, Anzac Day, making $6 million on that day, and finished up with a towering $53.2 million.
The Disney release accounted for a whopping 71% of the entire market as nationwide receipts shot up by 34% to $22.1 million, according to Rentrak.s estimates. The four-day tally was up 18.5% on last year.
Universal.s Fast & Furious 7 »
- Don Groves
Long before two-time Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman decided to become an actor he dreamed of a career as a classical pianist. Now, at age 77, Hoffman gets the chance to indulge his passion as Boychoir’s inscrutable Master Carvelle.
“I wanted to be a musician but I was never talented enough,” says Hoffman during an interview at the Toronto International Film Festival. Initially, he studied music at Santa Monica College before making the switch to acting.
“I have small hands so I can’t reach much more than an octave,” he says with his fingers stretched over an imaginary keyboard. “And, I think you have to have one of two qualifications; you have to have a really good ear or be a good sight-reader, and I’m neither.”
- Ingrid Randoja - Cineplex Magazine
Screenwriter Ben Ripley has followed up his time-travel thriller “Source Code” in a most unpredictable way. From an adrenaline-fueled terrorist atmosphere to the private confines of a boy’s choir school, Ripley’s rather plainly titled “Boychoir” bursts with harmony and euphoric melody thanks to a group of supernaturally talented boys. Unfortunately, Ripley’s talents for thrills don’t transition well into a coming-of-age story, unadventurous direction by François Girard provides no support, and the film’s voice is broken before it hits any soulful heights. Garrett Wareing plays Stet, a troubled youth whose attitude towards schoolwork and schoolmates is augmented by scorn and violent outbursts. Since he’s one of the brighter kids in his choir class, however, Stet follows the endless list of protagonists whose mischievous behavior is partly caused by being surrounded by inferiority. He comes home to a barely conscious, neglectful, boozing mother and proceeds to dump her. »
- Nikola Grozdanovic
The Mid-Atlantic Accent, that most self-conscious of acting choices, can still provide a good self-aware laugh. A particularly snooty variant appears early in François Girard's Boychoir, by way of Eddie Izzard playing a teacher at a Boy Choir school with maximum haughtiness. In a different film this might be delicious, but, symptomatically of Boychoir's larger problems, this character uncomfortably skewers the tone: Though Izzard is going full camp, Boychoir is incredibly earnest — at times, it veers into the garden-variety sentimentality of underdog sports movies, a subgenre to which it effectively belongs. Stet (Garrett Wareing) is an impoverished youth who, upon the death of his alcoholic mother, is sent by his absentee father (Josh L »
The first trailer for upcoming music-drama Boychoir – the latest film from acclaimed director François Girard (The Red Violin, Thirty Two Films About Glenn Gould) – has been released online by Informant Media, along with a new poster which we have for you here…
In the film, 12-year-old newcomer Garrett Wareing plays Stet, a rebellious preteen with a remarkable gift who is challenged by a demanding vocal teacher (two-time Academy Award winner Dustin Hoffman) at one of the most prestigious music academies in the country as they prepare for the National Championship. Kathy Bates (Misery), Kevin McHale (Glee), Eddie Izzard (Hannibal), Debra Winger (In Treatment), River Alexander (The Way Way Back) and Josh Lucas (Poseidon) co-star.
Boychoir opens in selected Us cinemas on April 3rd, with a UK release scheduled for July 10th.
- Scott J. Davis
Late screenwriting guru Syd Field often wrote in his Bibles for wannabe film scribes that if the writer doesn’t grab the viewer in the first 10 minutes (or the first 10 pages), then there’s no reason to stay with the story. Often these introductory minutes indicate the kind of story we are about to see, and illuminate important aspects of the protagonist whose journey we will follow. If one judges Boychoir from its opening scenes, few would want to stick around to see how the rest of the story unfolds.
The film begins going steadily through a checklist of conventions for stories about a downtrodden young protagonist with prodigal talent. The first shot of the film is of Stet, played by newcomer Garrett Wareing, crouching behind a train as it rattles through a Texas town. (If one was looking for a more trite way to show that the main character »
- Jordan Adler
Boyhood and Whiplash? That’s old news! This year, let’s combine them for Boychoir. The first trailer for the film, directed by François Girard, hit the web on Tuesday. It stars Dustin Hoffman, Kevin McHale, Kathy Bates, Eddie Izzard, Joe West, Josh Lucas, and Debra Winger. Wareing plays Stet (as in Stetson), an 11-year-old Texan who’s sent to “the premier boy choir school in the nation” after the death of his single mother. He immediately fails to fit in — he’s a poor kid with behavioral issues, in a fancy school full of fancy people — but his vocal talents capture the attention of the sour Carvelle (Hoffman).
Boychoir seems to be a more sedated version of Whiplash with Hoffman playing the teacher that will be pushing Stet past him limits to make him the best singer in the choir. Hoffman looks strong in the role, but the overall »
- Zach Dennis
Read More: Dustin Hoffman Brought to Tears While Eloquently Explaining Why 'Tootsie' Was ‘Never a Comedy’ A casting director could do worse than what's been assembled for "Boychoir." The film, from director François Girard ("The Red Violin"), stars Kathy Bates, Debra Winger, Eddie Izzard and, in what looks to be his best role in years, Dustin Hoffman. It centers on a rebellious, extremely talented 11-year-old (newcomer Garrett Wareing), who is taken under the wing of a demanding vocal teacher (Dustin Hoffman) at one of the most prestigious music academies in the country, as they prepare for the National Championship. If you think that sounds akin to a certain Oscar winner from last year, wait until you get a look of Hoffman in the official trailer (posted above): Seething, demanding and frequenter of "inspirational" lines like, "Quitting is all you know," Hoffman appears to be tapping into the same, »
- David Canfield
Director François Girard, known for his acclaimed films Silk, The Red Violin and Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould, is back with an all-new drama this spring. Boychoir arrives in theaters this April, and is headlined by acclaimed actor Dustin Hoffman as a demanding vocal teacher. He is joined on screen by an all-star cast that includes Kathy Bates, Josh Lucas, Debra Winger, Kevin McHale, Eddie Izzard and River Alexander.
Boychoir follows Stet, a troubled and angry 11-year-old orphan from a small Texas town who ends up at a Boy Choir school back East after the death of his single mom. Completely out of his element, he finds himself in a battle of wills with a demanding Choir Master who recognizes a unique talent in this young boy. The man will push Stet to the breaking point, hoping the prodigy will discover his creative heart and soul in music. »
Last year’s indie upstart Whiplash, which premiered at Sundance, banked three Academy Awards this February, including one for the compulsively-watchable powerhouse performance by J.K. Simmons as conservatory conductor Terence Fletcher.
Quebec native François Girard has already retraced the first few steps made by Whiplash director Damien Chazelle; His next film, Boychoir, played the festival circuit, starting with September’s Toronto International Film Festival, and his music conservatory-set film also features a noted portrayer of antiheroes – this time Dustin Hoffman – as the conductor.
Girard’s 1998 film The Red Violin, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Canada’s own Colm Feore, netted an Academy Award win for Best Original Score. Though The Red Violin’s seventy-seven-year-old composer John Corigliano won’t be reteaming with Girard for Boychoir, we »
- Sasha James
14 items from 2015
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