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Bart: Critics don’t like to admit it, but the conditions under which you see a film strongly influence your opinion. Birdman is a good example: If you see a film like this with a pack of cinephiles like at Telluride, everyone gets every inside joke, and you instinctively go along with the crowd. I made it a point to see Birdman with a paid civilian audience and it was like screening it in a mausoleum. No laughs, just occasional grunts and lots of walkouts. Some reviews predicted Birdman “will captivate arthouse and multiplex crowds alike and send awards pundits into orbit” (the Variety review). Well that ain’t happening with the audiences; we’ll see about the awards. »
- Mike Fleming Jr
During the 1990s, Jennifer Aniston was one of the most popular actresses in the world. She may not have been blowing up the box office like Julia Roberts, Meg Ryan or Sandra Bullock, she was instead the star of the hit comedy show Friends – which had turned her into a household name. So popular was Aniston during this period that he hair even became known as “The Rachel”, a much-requested style for hairdressers during the 90s. The show was watched by millions around the world and has become one of the most celebrated Us sitcoms of all-time, launching Aniston and her co-stars into hot property. Particularly as the show couldn’t last forever and the cast would look to transition to the big screen.
Aniston was no stranger to cinema. She got her first break in the horror comedy Leprechaun in 1993, but would take a break during her first few years on Friends. »
- Luke Owen
When people pass away, we often praise them with, "What couldn’t they do?" Exaggeration. With Mike Nichols, there’s really no answer to the theoretical. A seasoned comedian, a pillar of New York City theater, a successful film director — earning a Best Picture nomination, four Best Director nominations, and one win in the latter category — and one of only 12 people to successfully collect the coveted Egot, when it came to the entertainment industry, there really wasn’t anything he couldn’t do. He went out on a high. Thursday morning, we learned that Nichols passed away at the age of 83. Fleeing Nazi-occupied Germany in 1938, Nichols wound up in New York City and called the city home for nearly his entire life. Attending college in Chicago, he became part of the theater and comedy scenes, joining Second City and forming the comedy duo Nichols and May, along with actress Elaine May. »
- Matt Patches
One thing you’ve got to hand to the SAG TV voters, they’re loyal to a fault. When it comes to the categories for individual acting, once they find someone they like, they stick with them.
Each year a host of veterans, not to mention a steady stream of series newcomers, is forced into the cold by familiar, entrenched names in comedy and drama alike.
So amidst the universal mourning for the “Breaking Bad” and “30 Rock” finales, there must have been a certain amount of secret glee among thesps. After all, the spot Bryan Cranston occupied in male actor, drama, for five consecutive years is now open for business, as are Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey’s in the comedy division, where they competed, and usually triumphed, a total of 15 times.
Opening up Cranston’s slot is particularly tantalizing, since the drama field is crowded indeed. Steve Buscemi of »
- Bob Verini
Few directors can be said to have changed the way films are made, but Mike Nichols, who died Wednesday at 83, was one of them. His first film, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" (1966), ended decades of Hollywood censorship of adult content and freed the movies for mature language and subject matter ever after. His second film, "The Graduate," was the first serious mainstream movie to feature a rock soundtrack (spawning Simon and Garfunkel's hit "Mrs. Robinson") and, through its casting of Dustin Hoffman, expanded Hollywood's notion of what a leading man ought to look and sound like.
Nichols wasn't born in America (he and his family escaped from Nazi Germany when he was a child), but he was one of the best chroniclers of contemporary America -- its politics, its aspirations, its dreams, its aristocracy, and its successes and failures -- in movies. His youth in Manhattan as the son »
- Gary Susman
Variety are reporting that Djimon Hounsou is in talks to play the "Merlin-esque figure who trains and mentors Arthur" in Guy Ritchie's upcoming take on the classic tale, which is being envisioned as a six-part saga at Warner Bros. Apparently this is the role Thor: The Dark World's Idris Elba was up for, but scheduling conflicts arose and he was forced to drop out. Hounsou would join Charlie Hunnam in the title role of Arthur Pendragon, Astrid Berges-Frisbey as Guinevere, and Jude Law is still in talks to play the villain. There have been various movies, comics and tv shows based around Arthurian legend over the years, including the underrated Camelot and the mediocre Disney produced flick with Clive Owen in the title role. The most successful take was arguably John Boorman's Excalibur back in 1981. Akiva Goldsman and Tory Tunnell will produce, Joby Harold (Awake, Edge Of Tomorrow »
The film centres around an 8-year-old boy (Lieberher) who is spending time with his estranged father (Owen) while his mother (Bello) and her new husband (Modine) are away on a religious retreat.
They began to form a bond after a string of unfortunate events teams them with their strange neighbour (Oswalt).
The project will be Oscar-nominated Nebraska writer Nelson's directorial debut.
The Confirmation is preparing to shoot in Canada. »
• Hannibal Buress is joining Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg in Daddy's Home. Sean Ander and John Morris are directing the film, which tells the story of a radio executive (Ferrell) who wants to be the best stepdad he can to his wife's two children. But, his plans are disrupted when the children's biological father shows up. Buress will play a sarcastic handyman who believes the stepdad to be racist, the result of some ploying on the part of Wahlberg's character. Linda Cardellini also stars as Ferrell's wife. The film began shooting on Monday in New Orleans. [THR] • Clive Owen, Jaeden Lieberher, »
- C. Molly Smith
Rosamund Pike may well be on her way to a Best Actress Oscar nomination for her tremendous turn in this year’s Gone Girl, and now she’s already keen on lining up her next project. Variety reports the actress is in early talks to star in the survival love story drama The Mountain Between Us, which has Charlie Hunnam set as the male lead. The story revolves around a pair of strangers—a writer on the way to her wedding and a doctor heading home from a conference—who survive a plane crash in the mountains. Badly injured and alone, the two must find a way down the mountain, but since being stranded on a mountain with a good-looking stranger is one of nature’s most powerful aphrodisiacs, they begin to fall for each other. Hit the jump for more, including casting for the directorial debut of Nebraska writer Bob Nelson. »
- Adam Chitwood
Bydgoszcz, Poland — The European Co-Production Award — Prix Eurimages, which honors an individual working in the vanguard of European movie co-productions, will go to Irish producer Ed Guiney.
The award will be presented during the European Film Awards ceremony in Riga, Latvia on Dec. 13.
Element has been involved in the production and distribution of more than 30 feature films. Current and upcoming Element productions include Yorgos Lanthimos’ first English-language film, “The Lobster,” starting Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, John C. Reilly, Lea Seydoux and Ben Whishaw, “Room,” an adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s novel, directed by Lenny Abrahamson and starring Brie Larson, Joan Allen and William H. Macy, Gerard Barrett’s “Glassland,” starring Jack Reynor, Toni Colette and Will Poulter, and Jerzy Skolimowski’s “11 Minutes.”
Recently completed Element productions include Abrahamson’s “Frank, »
- Leo Barraclough
Bydgoszcz, Poland — Philip Kaufman, whose “Hemingway & Gellhorn” marked the veteran helmer/scribe’s entree into both the small-screen world and digital production in 2012, says he’s planning to delve further into the new Golden Age of television.
Kaufman is receiving Camerimage’s lifetime achievement kudo alongside longtime collaborator Caleb Deschanel, whose lensing is feted in a tribute. Their work together on “The Right Stuff,” for which special lighting rigs were created to convey the right look for Ed Harris’ Mercury 7 space capsule, taught Kaufman that a critical quality in a cinematographer is — aside from “that impeccable eye” — inventiveness.
At 76, the visionary behind “The Right Stuff,” “The Wanderers” and “The Unbearable Lightness of Being,” has no plans to retire, he explains, adding that he’s looking to launch another project with Clive Owen after witnessing his turn as Ernest Hemingway in the sprawling Spanish Civil War-set HBO film.
“I just finished »
- Will Tizard
Sales were closed during Afm for Pioneer Films for the Philippines, Pt Amero Mitra for Indonesia, Ram Indo for Malaysia, Viswaas for India, Mediaset España for Spain, Signature for the U.K., Wild Bunch for Germany, Artfilm for C.I.S. and Transmission Films for Australia.
- Dave McNary
Stars: Clive Owen, Marion Cotillard, Billy Crudup, Mila Kunis, Zoe Saldana, Matthias Schoenaerts, James Caan, Noah Emmerich, Lili Taylor, Domenick Lombardozzi, John Ventimiglia,Griffin Dunne | Written by Guillaume Canet, James Gray | Directed by Guillaume Canet
Two brothers, Chris (Owen), recently out of prison and Frank (Crudup), a respected policeman, are on either side of the law. As Chris tries to clean up his act and reconnect with his family he finds himself low on funds and rejected by society. Will he turn back to his old life and force Frank to act, splitting their family in two forever? Facing off in 1970′s Brooklyn, Blood Ties looks to see if blood trumps money when it comes to family and organised crime.
What I liked about Blood Ties was that the seventies was dripping from every corner of the film. The music, the clothes, the hair cuts and the attitudes of the characters. »
- Richard Axtell
The American Film Market is officially underway so that means loads of filmmakers are seeking financing for projects or trying to sell finished films and often, promotional artwork can help them do that. Here’s the Afm posters we’ve got coming at a glance: The action thriller Stratton starring Henry Cavill. Last Knights with Clive Owen and Morgan Freeman. Ratchet & Clank, a CG movie based on the video game. Dragon Blade with Jackie Chan, John Cusack and Adrien Brody. Posthumous starring Jack Huston and Brit Marling. The Ghouls based on Zhang Muye’s online series. Hit the jump to check it all out. Stratton We just found out that Cavill is set to produce and star in Stratton a couple of days ago. It’s based on the Duncan Falconer novels and will feature Cavill as the title character, John Stratton, an “Sbs operative with a lethal reputation.” Filming »
- Perri Nemiroff
The season also features a new play for theatre and television about the 2015 general election and the world premiere of a new Steve Waters drama.
Artistic Director Josie Rourke revealed the season's line-up on the Donmar Warehouse Twitter account this morning (November 3).
The Olivier Award-winning play Closer by Patrick Marber is being revived, after it won multiple awards in 1997 and was turned into a hit film in 2004 starring Julia Roberts, Natalie Portman, Jude Law and Clive Owen.
Marber said of the revival: 'I'm thrilled to be returning to the Donmar with this revival of Closer. David Leveaux is a director I've longed to work with for many years. I'm greatly looking forward to this collaboration with him, »
Disease recognises no social boundaries, even if people still do. Here’s Michael’s UK pace review of The Knick episode 3...
This review contains spoilers
1.3 The Busy Flea
The frequent lingering shots of human (and, this week, porcine) viscera lend The Knick a veneer of horror. The effect is similar; just as viewers of The Wicker Man can take comfort in the fact that they are not Sergeant Howie, so too can we feel relief that, should we suffer a hernia, we have better options that Dr Edwards’ poor, doomed patient. It’s likely to be a sustained genre borrowing but the opening moments of The Busy Flea extended the nod rather cleverly, cruelly teasing us with the state of Abby Alford’s appearance and leaving us with just the reaction shots (and Thack’s sudden interest) to conjure our own images before the full reveal.
That, of course, is »
It's half term, but that doesn't mean the kids are the only ones allowed to enjoy themselves!
Keep yourself entertained this half term, with the latest TV shows and movies available to watch on Now TV.
Here are Now TV's top 10 picks of what to watch whilst you're kicking back and relaxing throughout the rest of the week, presented in association with Digital Spy.
Ex-cop Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and a ragtag band of survivors fight to survive in an apocalyptic wasteland - overrun with flesh-hungry fiends known as 'Walkers' - in this high-tension, high-emotion series.
You don't have to be a horror fiend yourself to love The Walking Dead - there's so much more to the show than chills and spills, with strong characters, complex relationships, and satisfying, slow-burning storytelling - complete with shocking plot twists.
You can watch the series 4 box-set and also catch-up on »
The Mondo Genre had a selection of feature films of young or already successful directors this year and the festival gave priority to films that are world premieres. The movies selected were from countries like Italy, USA, Brazil and France. Out of the seven films that featured under this genre, Haider was the only Asian film selected across the globe.
“Haider is a classic Shakespearean tale retold with Kashmir in India as its backdrop, it’s a story that we would like to take to the world and to get this award now is a proud moment for the entire team of Haider,” says Director Vishal Bhardwaj. »
- Stacey Yount
The Knick's Eric Johnson has signed with Wme, The Hollywood Reporter has exclusively learned. The Canadian native is a series regular on Steven Soderbergh's critically acclaimed Cinemax series, where he plays ambitious aspiring surgeon Dr. Everett Gallinger. Cinemax has renewed the period medical drama for a second season. Read more Clive Owen on Why Steven Soderbergh Isn't Retiring Anytime Soon Johnson also recurs on Canadian cop drama Rookie Blue, which airs in the summer on ABC, as Det. Luke Callaghan, a role he originally played as a series regular. His other frequent television appearances include Criminal Minds, Orphan Black and
- Rebecca Sun
Director: Guillaume Canet
Running Time: 127 Minutes
Based on the 2008 French film Rivals, director Guillaume Canet recreates the familial drama in 1970s Brooklyn. With a knockout cast and New York setting Blood Ties was a promising venture, but had much to prove to admirers of the original.
Rivals prevailed in depicting a gritty crime drama that could easily be mistaken for a rediscovered 70s movie. Canet, who starred in the original, provides an unsuccessful remake. There was an expectation for more, especially with a winning cast. Unfortunately Blood Ties is a bland revision that opts for familiar formulaic clichés.
The film details the lives of two brothers, Chris (Clive Owen) and Frank (Billy Crudup). Fifty-year-old Chris has just been released from prison and younger brother Frank, a cop, reluctantly waits for him outside the gates. Frank, hopes that his brother has changed, »
- Ciham Messouki
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