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20 items from 2017


"Geostorm" - Climate Controlled

22 September 2017 12:25 PM, PDT | SneakPeek | See recent SneakPeek news »

Sneak Peek footage, plus images from the upcoming 'science fiction disaster' feature "Geostorm" co-written, co-produced and directed by Dean Devlin, starring Gerard Butler, Jim Sturgess, Abbie Cornish, Alexandra Maria Lara, Daniel Wu, Eugenio Derbez and Andy García, opening October 20, 2017:

"...in the near future, when climate-controlling satellites malfunction and release disaster-creating small pods all over the world...

"...'Jake Lawson' (Gerard Butler) and his other fellow astronauts head into space to prevent the satellites from programming the small pods into creating a storm of epic proportions.

"They soon discover that the disasters weren't caused by a malfunction, but were done with intention and the only person who has the kill codes to shut down the satellites is 'President Andrew Palma' (García)..."

Cast also includes Zazie Beetz, Adepero Oduye, Amr Waked, Robert Sheehan, Talitha Bateman, Billy Slaughter and Tom Choi.

Click the images to enlarge and Sneak Peek "Geostorm" »

- Michael Stevens

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The 20 Best Lgbtq Movies of the 21st Century

25 August 2017 11:25 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

“Moonlight.” “The Handmaiden.” “Carol.” The last few years have not only brought Lgbtq films and stories further into the mainstream, but queer films have dominated awards seasons and found commercial success. This has been a long time coming: The New Queer Cinema was a major influence on the indie film boom of the ’90s, and set the bar high for the many queer films to follow.

No longer limited by low budgets, films with gay and lesbian stories have flourished in the first two decades of the 21st century. There is something about the scrappy Diy aesthetic that will always be essentially queer — and the films below reflect a notable shift in the ambition and scope of contemporary queer films. While there may not be a new wave of queer filmmakers on par with the ’90s boom, in their place we got stories as complicated, sensual, soul-searching, and hilarious as the queer experience itself. »

- Jude Dry, Kate Erbland, Eric Kohn, David Ehrlich, Michael Nordine, Jamie Righetti and Chris O'Falt

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8 Indies That Are Honest About Teen Sexuality, From ‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’ to ‘The Diary of a Teenage Girl’

22 August 2017 8:00 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Risky and risqué, indie films have always been a home for bold, honest, and controversial visions of teens’ sexuality. Eliza Hittman’s “Beach Rats,” opening this week after bowing at Sundance in January, is another notch in the belt of the sub-genre, a sensitive and often shocking look inside the coming-of-age of a young Brooklyn teen.

Like the best of these films, it’s not all about hormones; it builds on questions about identity and desire. But that’s there too, in sensitively crafted scenes that don’t skimp on reality. Punctuated by some bad choices and an unnerving final act, “Beach Rats” embraces the full spectrum of teen sexuality, even when it’s not exactly alluring.

Read More:Why ‘Beach Rats’ Breakout Harris Dickinson Isn’t Afraid Of Risqué Roles (Or Sex Scenes) — Sundance Springboard

Here are eight indie films that engage with the subject matter in appropriately intimate ways. »

- Kate Erbland

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The Dinner

5 August 2017 9:26 AM, PDT | Trailers from Hell | See recent Trailers from Hell news »

How far will the new American aristocracy go to protect its privileges? Oren Moverman’s intense four-way war of wills is sourced from a novel but shapes up as an intense stage piece in a chi-chi restaurant interrupted by flashbacks and other stylistic flourishes. The acting foursome is excellent, with Steve Coogan a standout as a truly disturbed character. Four adults debate their sons’ high crimes and misdemeanors over designer cuisine.

The Dinner

Blu-ray + Digital HD

Lionsgate

2017 / Color / 1:85 widescreen / 120 min. / Street Date August 8, 2017 / 24.99

Starring: Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Steve Coogan, Rebecca Hall, Chloë Sevigny, Charlie Plummer, Adepero Oduye, Michael Chernus, Taylor Rae Almonte, Joel Bissonnette.

Cinematography: Bobby Bukowski

Film Editor: Alex Hall

Written by Owen Moverman from the novel by Herman Koch

Produced by Caldecott Chub, Lawrence Inglee, Julia Lebedev, Eddie Valsman

Directed by Oren Moverman

Herman Koch’s novel The Dinner comes to America after two successful European versions, »

- Glenn Erickson

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Gerard Butler Is In Charge Of Saving The World In New ‘Geostorm’ Trailer

7 July 2017 1:02 AM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Warner Bros. Pictures have debuted the second full trailer for their upcoming disaster movie Geostorm, the new big-budget adventure which will arrive in cinemas in October. Watch the all new Geostorm trailer below.

New Geostorm trailer: Gerard Butler and Jim Sturgess want to save the planet

After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong—the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything…and everyone along with it.

Dean Devlin (writer/producer, Independence Day) makes his feature film directorial debut with suspense thriller Geostorm, starring Gerard Butler (Olympus Has Fallen, 300), Jim Sturgess (Cloud Atlas), Abbie Cornish (Limitless), Alexandra Maria Lara »

- Paul Heath

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Check Out The New Trailer For Dean Devlin’s Geostorm

6 July 2017 11:41 AM, PDT | WeAreMovieGeeks.com | See recent WeAreMovieGeeks.com news »

Get ready for the end of the world… again. Making his feature film directorial debut, Dean Devlin (writer/producer, “Independence Day”) brings audiences this fall the sci/fi suspense thriller Geostorm.

After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong—the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything…and everyone along with it.

Warner Bros. Pictures has released a brand new trailer for the film.

Starring Gerard Butler (“Olympus Has Fallen,” “300”), Jim Sturgess (“Cloud Atlas”), Abbie Cornish (“Limitless”), Alexandra Maria Lara (“Rush”), Daniel Wu (“The Man with the Iron Fists,” “Warcraft: The Beginning”), Eugenio Derbez (“How to Be a Latin Lover »

- Michelle Hannett

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Geostorm Trailer #2 Takes Climate Change to the Extreme

6 July 2017 10:41 AM, PDT | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

Warner Bros. has released the second trailer for Geostorm, showcasing the devastating effects of a very extreme version of "climate change." While this fictional tale surely won't sway the naysayers who think climate change is a hoax, with these massive action set pieces that show various forms of weather systems getting extremely out of control, it certainly could provide some big-budget escapism from the current political climate. This trailer hints that Geostorm may in fact be the most action-packed movie to hit theaters all year, and it could also be a dark horse box office blockbuster, starring Gerard Butler.

The story is set in the aftermath of an unprecedented series of natural disasters that threatened the planet in ways never been seen before, which lead the world's leaders to come together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. The trailer, from Warner Bros. YouTube, »

- MovieWeb

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The 25 Best Films Directed By Women of the 21st Century, From ‘Lost in Translation’ to ‘Persepolis’

26 May 2017 8:00 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Female filmmakers are still an unfortunate rarity in Hollywood — USC Annenberg’s Media, Diversity & Social Change Initiative’s latest study about female directors in the industry recently delivered blunt findings like “the director’s chair is white and male” and “age restricts opportunities for female filmmakers” and even “one & done: opportunities for female directors are rare” — but that hasn’t stopped a compelling legion of creators to churn out excellent films for as long as the art form has existed.

The 21st century may be less than seventeen years old, but it’s already played home to a slew of instant classics, from established auteurs to rising indie stars and everything in between. Here are the 25 best.

Read More: The 25 Best Sci-Fi Movies of the 21st Century, From ‘Children of Men’ to ‘Her’

Behold, a bevy of riches…

25. “Tomboy,” directed by Céline Sciamma (2011)

A quietly gorgeous portrait of a plucky »

- Kate Erbland, Jude Dry, Zack Sharf and Chris O'Falt

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The 15 Greatest Lesbian Movies of All Time, Ranked

8 May 2017 10:57 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Narrowing down the 15 best movies in any genre is tough, but for lesbian films you have to begin with a reductive question: What is a lesbian film? What, in fact, is a lesbian? (But that’s a different piece). Must the film focus primarily on a gay storyline, or can it feature strong lesbian characters doing something entirely different than just being lesbians? Is subtext enough? How much cinephile wrath will rain down on us for the absence of a certain recent Oscar nominee?

Ultimately, the best lesbian films honor the traditions of queer cinema in all of its glory: Strong women, high entertainment value, and bold visuals reign supreme. Too often, lesbian characters are either unattractive man-haters or used for titillation. These movies reclaim all of that; they’re the movies you will see played on a loop in the club, or at an underground rooftop movie night. Some »

- Jude Dry

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The Dinner | Review

5 May 2017 4:05 PM, PDT | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

Principles of Privilege: Moverman Dresses Morality Drama in American Clothes

Susan Sontag once famously wrote, “The white race is the cancer of human history,” an epithet which dangles like a deadly albatross throughout the fourth film by Oren Moverman, The Dinner, a drama about morality based on the novel by Dutch writer Herman Koch. Once meant as a property for the directorial debut of Cate Blanchett, Moverman swoops in for a heady, Pinteresque examination of WASPish mentality one would expect from A.R. Gurney if he were searching for an infinitely fouler disposition of his favored subject. However, Moverman elevates and refines this material for his own particular purposes of skewering white affluent folks intent on wielding their inherent privilege to protect the virtuous futures of their troubled broods in what stands as the third cinematic treatment of the novel (following a 2013 Dutch version and a 2014 Italian adaptation).

The Lohmans are a tense bunch as of late. Ex-high school teacher Paul (Steve Coogan) and wife Claire (Laura Linney) have opposing feelings about meeting Paul’s brother Stan (Richard Gere) and his second wife Katelyn (Rebecca Hall) for dinner. With Stan in the middle of a troubled run for governor, the importance of the dinner seems odd during such a touchy period. Until we learn both sets of parents have come together to decide what to do about their kids, who recently committed a monstrous act, something which could go unpunished…as long as no one says anything.

Moverman expands upon the stagey theatricality of the narrative scope, beginning with its troubling, lavish opening credits, highlighting frivolousness amidst colorful splashes of gourmet cuisine, as the credits of a high profile cast and crew (including Moverman’s reunion with Dp Bobby Bukowski) march over them. This time around, we become manipulated to sympathize with several of these characters’ perspectives only to be flayed by dismay when it sinks in—the quartet of well-bred, wealthy, emotionally stagnant white people we have been watching, are without a doubt, highly flawed, incredibly unlikeable beings. But how Moverman manages to trick us into making them seem compelling is where the absolute power of his version of The Dinner lies.

Initially, we gravitate towards Steve Coogan’s withering, Civil war enthusiast, who sets a tone of trenchant sides, one against the other. Breaking the fourth wall in narration, he’s the snide, withering voice of reason, or so we assume, leading up to the eponymous, cryptic meal he will be sharing with his brother, a suave smooth talker (or as he’s described, a “deal maker”). Until we get a clearer composite of his psychological background, and Moverman’s film takes pains (and delights) in stomping on our initial understandings of each of these surely good people. Gere is as exceptionally believable as Coogan is superbly dour, and there’s a definite switch at a certain point, where we’re led to abandon the side of one and root for the other.

Their wives are defined in more troubling, murky terms, particularly Laura Linney (who steals a handful of sequences with resplendent facial expression). Rebecca Hall, looking fantastic, has the less dynamic role as a trophy wife who desires to be rewarded for her saintly efforts by becoming the wife of a governor. But what exactly happened to Barbara, the socially conscious first wife of Stan, who fled the marriage and her children for an ashram in India? Chloe Sevigny delights in her two flashback sequences as the opinionated, arguably ideal character. The audience becomes complicit in this game of shifting alliances, where family becomes collapsed as another ideation of the political arena.

And Moverman perhaps spends a bit too much time in these flashbacks, revolving between past periods of the adults’ lives, while reenacting the terrible act committed by two insensitive young white boys against a homeless, racial other. Although these continual snippets of the heinous act are there for a purpose, meant to slowly inform us of what kind of people we’re spending an unusually expensive dining experience with, they are also greatly at odds with the formal hustling and bustling of the dinner, to the degree where these Bunelian interruptions from the topic at hand take on a tone of artificial comedy. At one point, a teary Hall gets an aside where she clutches at Linney and Coogan, informing them they’re all blessed (she doesn’t have to spell out she means white and wealthy by such a statement), but these devoted moments eventually seem like a belabored way to cement the callousness of all.

Although not about race, per se, the trio of racial others on the periphery of this narrative irrevocably inform and trouble the proceedings. The black son Beau (Miles J. Harvey), whom Barbara adopted with Stan (before she abandons him) is particularly interesting, because it is both Paul and his son Michael’s relationship with the boy which explain their hardwired disdain for the current state of affairs. Coogan gets a particularly telling tirade when he accuses the eight-year old Beau of playing the ‘race card’ when he’s terrorized by his son, claiming his views are not racist because he’s a teacher who sometimes educates black students.

When the boys are teenagers and on the eve of their defining moment, Moverman pads an exchange pertaining to Michael’s internalized racism a bit too directly just prior to what they do to their unfortunate victim. And then, there’s a curious role for Adepero Oduye (Pariah, 2011) as Gere’s valiantly tireless assistant, a character who likely informs is own approach to the scenario, but only to a point. Moverman’s dinner is certainly barbed, and often venomous, but in spending two solid hours with such unlikeable company is an ordeal in itself, even one as handsomely crafted and executed as this.

Reviewed on February 10 at the 2017 Berlin International Film Festival – Competition. 120 Mins.

★★★½/☆☆☆☆☆

The post The Dinner | Review appeared first on Ioncinema.com. »

- Nicholas Bell

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What Happened to the Women Directors in Hollywood? Part 5: 2000–2017

24 March 2017 2:02 PM, PDT | Women and Hollywood | See recent Women and Hollywood news »

Mira Nair and Ava DuVernay: Wikimedia Commons/IndiaFM/Bollywoodhungama/usbotschaftberlin

by Carrie Rickey

This five-part Truthdig series by Carrie Rickey is published in partnership with Women and Hollywood. The series considers the historic accomplishments of women behind the camera, how they got marginalized, and how they are fighting for equal employment. Specifically, this series asks, why do females make up between 33 and 50 percent of film-school graduates but account for only seven percent of working directors? What happened to the women directors in Hollywood?

Female filmmakers greeted the 21st century with optimism. By most measures, movies by women were garnering increased respect in the industry and at the multiplex. Their makers cracked glass ceilings, created new genres, and established new box-office records.

With “Nowhere in Africa” (2001), Caroline Link became the second woman to direct the Oscar-winner for the year’s best foreign film. With “Lost in Translation” (2003), Sofia Coppola was the third woman to receive a best director nomination from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. And with “The Hurt Locker” (2009), Kathryn Bigelow was the fourth woman nominated in the directing category — and the first to win. The following year, Danish filmmaker Susanna Bier directed the winner in the best foreign film category, “In a Better World.”

Gina Prince-Bythewood’s “Love & Basketball” (2000), Karyn Kusama’s “Girlfight” (2000) and Gurinder Chadha’s “Bend It Like Beckham” (2003) created what might be called the “Title IX” movie, celebrating female athletes on the court, in the ring, and on the field. These are sports movies that celebrate the female body — not for its sex appeal, but for its power. These films inspired younger women (and their mothers were thrilled to take them to movies that didn’t objectify women).

Comedies by women continued to make serious box office, proving the Hollywood wisdom that “funny is money.” Nancy Meyers’ “What Women Want” (2000), starring Mel Gibson as a player briefly given the power to hear what women think about him, made $374 million. Sharon Maguire’s “Bridget Jones’s Diary” (2001), in which the title character says what she thinks about womanizers and prigs, brought in $282 million. Movies like these permitted men and women to laugh at men’s foibles.

From Patricia Cardoso’s “Real Women Have Curves” (2002), which introduced America Ferrera as a college-bound Latina, to Julie Taymor’s biopic “Frida” (2003), with Salma Hayek as Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, to Patty Jenkins’ “Monster” (2003), with Charlize Theron as serial killer Aileen Wuornos, audiences saw realistic women — as opposed to human swizzle sticks with breasts — in movies by women.

Many critics hailed Niki Caro’s “Whale Rider” (2003), about a Maori preteen who challenges her tribal patriarchy and becomes the new chief, as a harbinger of the triumph of female filmmakers over the status quo. Others pointed to the fact that for the first time since records had been kept, in 2000 women made 11 percent of the top 250 box office films. For women who make movies, the new century felt like a new day.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Sadly, that encouraging percentage turned out to be a fluke. After 2000, the number dwindled. It remains stuck in the 6 to 9 percent range, says Martha Lauzen, professor of communications and head of the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University. Since 1998 Lauzen has tracked women working in the industry in her annual “Celluloid Ceiling” report.

“When I started this, I thought it was merely an issue of people not knowing how low the numbers were,” Lauzen said ruefully. “I didn’t know how slow social change is.”

Lauzen’s reporting represents one of three vital resources for understanding the triumphs female filmmakers have made and how far they need to go to achieve parity with men. The others are Stacy Smith’s Media Diversity and Social Change Institute at USC’s Annenberg School and The Bunche Center at UCLA.

Collectively and individually, these creators of annual good news/bad news reports have kept the issue of representation in the public eye.

The Good: For Kathryn Bigelow (“The Hurt Locker,” “Zero Dark Thirty”), the late Nora Ephron (“Julie & Julia”), and Nancy Meyers (“It’s Complicated,” “The Intern”), the 21st century has been a fruitful time. So, too, for younger female moviemakers. Consider Lisa Cholodenko (“Laurel Canyon,” “The Kids Are All Right”), Ava DuVernay (“Selma,” “13th”), and Mira Nair (“Monsoon Wedding,” “The Namesake”).

Consider also that Catherine Hardwicke established a franchise with “Twilight” (which made $393 million), Sam Taylor-Johnson created another with “50 Shades of Grey” ($571 million), and that Anne Fletcher’s “The Proposal” made $317 million and Phyllida Lloyd’s “Mamma Mia!” earned $609 million.

Additionally, filmmakers like Dee Rees (“Pariah”), Debra Granik (“Winter’s Bone”), and Lone Scherfig (“An Education”) broke into the market with unique visions and eyes for new talent, including Adepero Oduye, Jennifer Lawrence, and Carey Mulligan. Significantly, Vicky Jenson (“Shrek”), Jennifer Lee (“Frozen”), Jennifer Yuh Nelson (“Kung Fu Panda 2”), and Brenda Chapman (“Brave”) staked a place for women in animation.

The Bad: For every woman appearing onscreen in movies in 2015 there were 2.3 men, according to Stacy Smith’s Media Diversity & Social Change Initiative.

The Ugly: When Walt Hickey, culture reporter for the website fivethirtyeight.com, goes to the movies and sees the screen population is 69 percent male, it just looks wrong to him. “It’s like something apocalyptic has happened, like a parallel universe — a man’s world,” he says.

Both Lauzen’s and Smith’s data show that when a woman is behind the camera and/or screenplay, 39 percent of protagonists are female. In movies by male directors, only four percent of the lead characters are female.

A century ago, male dominance behind the camera and on the screen was not the norm. For women behind the camera, it’s been the norm since 1920. And for women onscreen, it’s been the norm since 1950. Because of this, moviegoers have a distorted picture of America as predominantly male and predominantly Caucasian, when it is neither. (For finer-grain data on minority representation, see this annual report from UCLA’s Bunche Center.)

The Force Reawakens

The Hollywood Dream Factory tailors the majority of its product to the measurements of the men in the audience. This troubles those who want their daughters to partake of the same professional opportunities, cultural representation, and dream lives as their sons. While “Nine to Five,” “Norma Rae,” and “Erin Brockovich” show that studios love stories of women who triumph over the odds, there is less obvious love for female filmmakers trying to beat the odds stacked against them in their professional lives.

Since the Original Six filed suit against two studios in 1983 (see Part 3), female filmmakers have met, strategized, and troubleshot. So much so that in one of her final essays before her death in 2012, Nora Ephron made a list of “Things I Won’t Miss.” Near the top: “Panels on Women in Film.” Many women in film felt as though they were running in place.

“Instead of holding a million panels about it,” Christine Vachon, producer of “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Carol,” exclaimed at the 2016 Sundance Festival, “let’s do something about it!”

Someone had. She is Maria Giese, director of the feature films “When Saturday Comes” and “Hunger.” In February 2013 she brought a complaint to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Eeoc) in Los Angeles. Her contention was that the cohort of working filmmakers in the Directors Guild of America (DGA), of which she is a member, was overwhelmingly male.

(While the number of women in the guild directing episodic television amounts to 17 percent, the DGA 2015 census of female filmmakers registered 6.4 percent. That’s lower than the nine percent of female coal miners, and fractional next to the 32 percent of practicing physicians and 36 percent of practicing lawyers who are women).

The Eeoc, which collects data on employer/employee relations for each calendar year, was reluctant to take on a class-action suit.

In April 2013, Giese contacted the Aclu of Southern California and showed the evidence to Melissa Goodman, director of its Lgbtq, Gender & Reproductive Justice Project. For the next two years Goodman and her colleague Ariela Migdal took testimony from more than 50 female directors. In May 2015 they sent the Eeoc an extraordinary letter that counted the ways in which “female filmmakers are effectively excluded from directing big-budget films and seriously underrepresented in television.” A compelling argument in their letter: “The entertainment industry employs many people and makes products that profoundly shape our culture and the perception of women and girls.” Later in 2015, the Eeoc commenced its own investigation.

In January 2017, based on a high-level internal DGA leak received by Giese, Deadline Hollywood reported that after a federal investigation spanning a year that included testimony from over 100 women directors, the Eeoc recently served charges of sex discrimination and unfair hiring practice against all six major studios. While the federal agency does not comment on active cases, Gillian Thomas and Melissa Goodman of the Aclu wrote in an editorial that they had no reason to doubt the veracity of the leak.

A key factor contributing to Giese’s success in getting this issue to the Aclu and Eeoc was her ability to expose the structural obstacles female filmmakers face, from a guild that puts female and minority filmmakers in the same category, to the studios that question the fitness of women to direct.

Myths and Continued Underrepresentation

Over the 25 years I’ve reported on female filmmakers, I’ve interviewed two generations of movie executives. Most, but not all, were male. Most took seriously my questions about the apparent exclusion of women behind the camera, both on the screen and their forthcoming line-up.

Without exception, all of them retold one or more of the “Three Hollywood Myths.”

Myth #1) “Women don’t want to direct action movies and those are the films which are making money.”

Untrue. See: Martha Coolidge’s “Real Genius” (1985), Kathryn Bigelow’s “Point Break” (1991), Mimi Leder’s “The Peacemaker” (1997) and “Deep Impact” (1998), Lexi Alexander’s “Punisher: War Zone” (2008), and Bigelow’s “The Hurt Locker” (2009) and “Zero Dark Thirty” (2012).

What is true is that Patty Jenkins was hired to direct “Thor: The Dark World” (2013) and left due to creative differences. She is now working on the forthcoming “Wonder Woman.”

What is true is that Mira Nair was offered a “Harry Potter” film and chose instead to make the family drama “The Namesake” because the material was more important to her, and that Ava DuVernay was offered “Black Panther,” the film version of the Marvel Comics series, and declined for similar reasons.

Myth #2) “Movies by women don’t make money.”

Untrue again. Some movies by women don’t make back their investment, just as some movies by men do not. What is true is that many movies by women make major bank. Catherine Hardwicke’s little $37 million film “Twilight” grossed $393 million and launched a billion-dollar franchise.

Hardwicke told me by phone that she hears all the time from studios that films by women are poor investments. “And every time you say, ‘Well, this one made money, that one made money,’ they say, ‘This one made money because it was based on a best-selling book,’ or ‘That one made money because of its hot actress.’”

Here are six more films by women and their box-office grosses. They made money because they powerfully connected with audiences.

Bend it Like Beckham” (Gurinder Chadha). Cost: $6 million/Gross: $77 million“Frida” (Julie Taymor). Cost: $12 million/Gross: $56 million“Frozen” (Jennifer Lee). Cost: $150 million/Gross: $1.2 billion“The Proposal” (Anne Fletcher). Cost: $40 million/Gross: $317 million“Selma” (Ava DuVernay). Cost: $20 million/Gross $67 million“Lost in Translation” (Sofia Coppola). Cost: $4 million/Gross $120 million

Myth #3) “A woman behind the camera means women on the screen and no men in the audience.”

Untrue, if taken literally. Sometimes movies by women have a lower percentage of men in the audience, just as sometimes movies by men have a lower percentage of women in the audience. Take, for example, the 2015 films, “Bridge of Spies” by Steven Spielberg and “The Intern” by Nancy Meyers.

According to Paul Dergarabedian of comScore, the research company’s “PostTrak” data shows the audience gender breakdown at “Bridge of Spies,” a ’60s-era political thriller starring Tom Hanks, was 54 percent male and 46 percent female. For “The Intern,” a contemporary workplace comedy co-starring Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro, it was 41 percent male and 59 percent female. Spielberg’s film grossed $165 million; Meyers’ $194 million. His budget was $40 million; hers was $35 million.

Ava DuVernay’s “Selma,” the story of the 1965 march for voting rights led by Martin Luther King and starring David Oyelowo, had an audience gender breakdown of 47 percent male and 53 percent female. The assumption that movies come gendered with a blue or pink ribbon is a canard that still lingers in Hollywood, perhaps a vestige of the target marketing that began in the 1980s.

Speaking from the set of “Queen Sugar” in 2016, DuVernay observed, “We’re in a place right now where every other film is about a comic book superhero. We’re top-heavy with testosterone.”

How did Hollywood, a century ago a place where female directors thrived and prospered, come to this?

Stacy Title, director of “The Last Supper” and “The Bye Bye Man,” points the finger at “unconscious bias.”

Mira Nair, who was born in India, suspects chauvinism. “I’ve always remarked at the irony that the percentage of female directors is higher in India than in the United States,” she explained in a phone conversation. “India is supposed to be the traditional chauvinist culture,” she observes. Nair wonders if the historic examples of female prime ministers in South Asia — Indira Gandhi in India, Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan — may have broken the glass ceiling for all professional women there. “Their examples don’t exist in the U.S.”

DuVernay looks forward to the outcome — and hoped-for positive resolution — of the Eeoc investigation. “It’s a systematic problem and it requires radical change,” she said. “If it’s not happening organically, systems should be put in place.” Like many female filmmakers, DuVernay hopes the Eeoc can reconfigure what Giese calls the “vertical playing field for women” into a level one.

“One thing I’m heartened by,” said Nair, who’s been making features for nearly 30 years, “is that the variety and confidence of female filmmakers today is inspiring.”

Do others think it’s changed for the better for women since the 1980s?

“For me, there’s no comparison between the ’80s and now,” reflected Nancy Meyers, whose six films as a director or writer/director have grossed more than a billion dollars. By email she wrote:

Men were still getting used to us being on set in the ’80s. (Men used to have photos of pinups on the set in the ’80s! I’m not kidding.)The only women around back then worked in costumes and hair and makeup. Today women are in every department and often department heads. There are still very few women in the camera department and that’s a shame. That seems to still be a real boy’s club. Today, most crew members are far more comfortable working for and with women.

Yet one thing has not changed: “Now, getting the job to be the director — that’s still an uphill battle,” Meyers said.

In addition to writing film reviews and essays for Truthdig, Carrie Rickey has been a film critic at The Philadelphia Inquirer and Village Voice, and an art critic at Artforum and Art in America. Rickey has taught at various institutions, including School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania, and has appeared frequently on NPR’s “Talk of the Nation,” MSNBC, and CNN.

What Happened to the Women Directors in Hollywood? Part 5: 2000–2017 was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »

- Women and Hollywood

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It's Weather Gone Wild in First Geostorm Trailer

9 March 2017 8:56 AM, PST | Cinelinx | See recent Cinelinx news »

If you love disaster movies, then this first trailer for Geostorm should scratch a particular itch, with massive tornadoes, tsunamis, and loads of destruction.  come inside to check it out!

I've long been a sucker for disaster/weather movies.  The idea of contending with an unstoppable force (nature) and the havoc it can cause is an interesting one and can make for some exciting set pieces.  As such, I can't help but feel excited based off this Geostorm trailer: 

 

 

Let's be honest here...the story, as with Most disaster films, probably isn't going to be all that great, but that's not why I'm going to end up seeing this film.  I'm going for the ridiculous amount of awesome destruction on display.  What do you guys think? 

After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to »

- feeds@cinelinx.com (Jordan Maison)

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Watch The Wild Trailer For Dean Devlin’s Geostorm Starring Gerard Butler, Abbie Cornish And Ed Harris

8 March 2017 12:53 PM, PST | WeAreMovieGeeks.com | See recent WeAreMovieGeeks.com news »

Today the world will be taken by storm. Check out the new Official Teaser for Geostorm now, in theaters October 20.

After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong—the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything…and everyone along with it.

Dean Devlin (writer/producer, “Independence Day”) makes his feature film directorial debut with suspense thriller Geostorm, starring Gerard Butler (“Olympus Has Fallen,” “300”), Jim Sturgess (“Cloud Atlas”), Abbie Cornish (“Limitless”), Alexandra Maria Lara (“Rush”), Daniel Wu (“The Man with the Iron Fists,” “Warcraft: The Beginning”), with Oscar nominees Ed Harris (“The Hours,” “Apollo 13”) and Andy Garcia (“The Godfather: Part III »

- Michelle McCue

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Women in Revolt: An International Women's Day Film Syllabus

8 March 2017 8:51 AM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

Gulabi GangThe legacy of feminist cinema showcases the complexities of women’s humanity through different prisms of ideology, time, landscapes, and national origin. The revolutionary potential of witnessing women’s liberation through a visual medium has provided a deeper and more complex portrayal of the diversity of narratives and characters that have otherwise been stripped from other areas of culture. These will only grow under the blossoming contemporary feminist movement that will celebrate the 103th anniversary of International Women’s Day on March 8, 2017. This anniversary comes mere months after the momentous Women’s March, whose formation has roots in the result of Donald Trump’s presidential win but was truly years in the making with cuts to reproductive healthcare access, trans and queer civil rights, and general inadequacies towards women. The galvanization of millions of women around the world has ushered an even greater desire for better representation on screen, »

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Geostorm Trailer Shows the Terrifying Effects of Rapid Climate Change

8 March 2017 8:00 AM, PST | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

After showing us some of the deadly effects of a worldwide manmade storm with several teasers yesterday, Warner Bros. and Skydance have unteathered the full trailer for the intense new thriller Geostorm. And it's like watching all of your favorite disaster movies put in a blender and served on puree. It's an incredible blast of destruction that should keep fans of films like Independence Day and 2012 incredibly happy this fall. Trust us when we say, it does not disappoint on that level.

After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world's leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong, the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it's a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything...and everyone along with it. »

- MovieWeb

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Weather Gets Wicked in Geostorm Teaser Trailer

8 March 2017 7:39 AM, PST | DailyDead | See recent DailyDead news »

Tornadoes, massive tidal waves, and more manipulated aspects of Mother Nature threaten to destroy life as we know it in the official trailer for Geostorm.

"After an unprecedented series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control the global climate and keep everyone safe. But now, something has gone wrong—the system built to protect the Earth is attacking it, and it’s a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything...and everyone along with it.

Dean Devlin (writer/producer, “Independence Day”) makes his feature film directorial debut with suspense thriller “Geostorm,” starring Gerard Butler (“Olympus Has Fallen,” “300”), Jim Sturgess (“Cloud Atlas”), Abbie Cornish (“Limitless”), Alexandra Maria Lara (“Rush”), Daniel Wu (“The Man with the Iron Fists,” “Warcraft: The Beginning”), with Oscar nominees Ed Harris (“The Hours,” “Apollo 13 »

- Derek Anderson

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‘The Dinner’ Trailer: Richard Gere is Faced with a Difficult Decision in Oren Moverman’s Psychological Thriller

28 February 2017 11:36 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

The Dinner” premiered a couple of weeks ago at the Berlin International Film Festival. Now, The Orchard has released a new trailer for Oren Moverman’s dark psychological thriller ahead of its May 5 release.

Read More: ‘The Dinner’ Review: Steve Coogan and Richard Gere Are Enraged Siblings in Oren Moverman’s Intense Family Drama

Based on Herman Koch’s international bestselling novel of the same name, “The Dinner” stars Richard Gere as Stan Lohman, a prominent politician running for governor, who invites his estranged brother Paul (Steve Coogan) and wife Claire (Laura Linney) to join him and his wife Katelyn (Rebecca Hall) for dinner at a hip restaurant. The purpose of the gathering is to discuss a violent crime committed by their teenage sons, which was filmed by a security camera and shown on TV, but, so far, the boys have not been identified. Now the parents must decide how to handle the situation. »

- Yoselin Acevedo

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First look at Ben Foster in Nic Pizzalotto thriller 'Galveston'

11 February 2017 10:00 PM, PST | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Mélanie Laurent-directed revenge-thriller is now underway in Georgia; cast rounds out.

Shoot is underway in Georgia on actor-director Mélanie Laurent’s (Inglorious Basterds) feature Galveston, which is adapted by Nic Pizzolatto (True Detective) from his novel of the same name.

Screen can reveal the first image from the revenge-thriller, whose cast is led by Ben Foster (Hell Or High Water,) and Elle Fanning (20th Century Women).

Foster plays Roy, a cancer-ridden debt collector and sometime killer. Fanning plays Rocky, a young prostitute who flees with Roy when an attempt on his life ends in violence.

Rounding out the cast is Beau Bridges (Masters Of Sex) as Roy’s murderous loan-shark boss, Efp’s shooting star of 2016 María Valverde (Exodus: Gods and Kings), Adepero Oduye (The Dinner), Lili Reinhart (Miss Stevens) and Robert Aramayo (Game of Thrones).

Low Spark FilmsTyler Davidson (Take Shelter) produces. Executive producers are Jean Doumanian, Patrick Daly, [link »

- andreas.wiseman@screendaily.com (Andreas Wiseman)

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First Trailer for Oren Moverman's 'The Dinner' Premiering at Berlinale

8 February 2017 3:15 AM, PST | firstshowing.net | See recent FirstShowing.net news »

The Orchard has revealed the first official trailer for an indie drama titled The Dinner, which is premiering at the Berlin Film Festival starting this week. The Dinner is the latest film from director Oren Moverman (The Messenger, Rampart, Time Out of Mind), adapted from the novel by Herman Koch. The film is about two couples that meet at a restaurant for dinner, discussing a situation involving their children. It's a look at how far parents will go to protect their children. The two couples are: Richard Gere & Rebecca Hall and Steve Coogan & Laura Linney. Also featuring Chloë Sevigny, Charlie Plummer, Adepero Oduye and Joel Bissonnette. There is obviously more going on here than just a dinner, I'm curious to see this. Here's the first official trailer for Oren Moverman's The Dinner, originally from EW (on YouTube): While dining together at a restaurant, two couples (Richard Gere & Rebecca Hall »

- Alex Billington

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‘The Dinner’ Trailer: Richard Gere and Steve Coogan Face Off In Oren Moverman’s New Psychological Thriller

7 February 2017 11:14 AM, PST | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

The Berlin Film Festival begins this Thursday, February 9, and will feature such premieres as Aki Kurasami’s “The Other Side of Hope,” Sally Potter’s “The Party” and Oren Moverman’s new psychological thriller “The Dinner,” about a claustrophobic double date gone completely awry.

Read More: 5 Exciting Films in the 2017 Berlin Film Festival Competition Lineup

The film follows Stan Lohman (Richard Gere), a well-known politician, who invites his brother Paul (Steve Coogan) and his wife Claire (Laura Linney) out to dinner at a hip restaurant. Though Paul reluctantly agrees to go, he’s stunned by Stan’s insistence that they air their dirty laundry, particularly a horrific crime their children have committed but has yet to surface. It co-stars Chloë Sevigny (“The Last Days of Disco”), Rebecca Hall (“Christine”), Charlie Plummer (“King Jack”) and Adepero Oduye (“Pariah”). Watch a trailer for the film below via EW.

This is Moverman’s fourth feature film, »

- Vikram Murthi

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