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Alex Gibney’s “We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks” and Sean Fine’s and Andrea Nix Fine’s “Life According to Sam” are among the nominees for the Producers Guild of America’s 2014 award for documentaries, the PGA announced on Tuesday. The other nominees are “A Place at the Table,” “Far Out Isn’t Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story” and “Which Way Is the Front Line From Here? The Life and Times of Tim Hetherington.” None of the nominated films were nominated for the top award by the International Documentary Association or the Cinema Eye Honors, the two most prestigious groups that honor. »
- Steve Pond
In an effort to make the documentary feature category more democratic, the Academy’s nonfiction branch changed its qualifying rules last year. A review in the New York Times or Los Angeles Times for a doc to register as eligible was intended to narrow the number of qualifying pics and validate a doc’s theatrical bonafides. For the second year in a row, the rules failed to accomplish either.
Instead, a record-breaking 149 docs are eligible this year. That’s up 23 from last year and 87 from a decade ago.
Despite the closure of the Intl. Documentary Assn.’s DocuWeeks, which former branch governor Michael Moore criticized as an outlet to “buy eligibility,” more filmmakers than ever before are spending their own money (thousands of dollars) for qualifying weeklong runs in New York and L.A. (In its 16-year run, DocuWeeks qualified 30 Oscar nominees and seven winning documentaries.)
Another rule change initiated »
- Addie Morfoot
Which is better, “The United States of Autism” or “The United States of Football?” Which musicians were the subject of the best documentary — background singers, a white rhythm section from Alabama, a Russian punk band, a legendary songwriter from Brooklyn or a Filipino Journey fan who became the band’s lead singer? And which Oscar winners deserve another trip to the podium — Alex Gibney, Jonathan Demme, Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine or Roger Ross Williams? Those are some of the questions raised by the formidable list of 151 documentaries that qualified for the Oscar in the Best Documentary Feature category. »
- Steve Pond
The International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography, otherwise known as Camerimage, today revealed the films screening in six of the festival's competition sections, including "Polish Films," "Cinematographer's Debut," "Director's Debut," "Student Etudes," "Feature Documentary Films," and "Short Documentary Films." Sebastian Junger and Andrea Nix Fine are among the acclaimed filmmakers with works screening at the festival's 21st edition, which will showcase some 300 films, grouped into 24 sections, including 10 competitions. There are films from 50 countries around the world. Some 30 films will have their European premieres in Bydgoszcz, and more than 50 will have their Polish premieres. Camerimage's prestigious awards -- the Golden Frog, Silver Frog, and Bronze Frog -- will be presented to the greatest achievements in cinematography. Likewise, the Golden Tadpole, Silver Tadpole, and Bronze Tadpole awards will be presented to the best cinematographers in the »
- Ohad Amram
Camerimage , the International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography (Nov 16-23), has revealed its 2013 line-up of films screening in six of the festival’s competition sections.
The 21st edition of Camerimage will screen more than 300 feature and short films, grouped into 24 sections, including 10 competitions. There are films from 50 countries around the world.
Around 30 films will receive their European premieres in Bydgoszcz, and more that 50 will have their Polish premieres.
The Golden Frog, Silver Frog and Bronze Frog awards will be bestowed upon competition titles representing the greatest achievements in cinematography. In the Student Etudes Competition, the Festival awards Golden Tadpole, Silver Tadpole and Bronze Tadpole.
It was previously announced that Oscar-nominated cinematographer Sławomir Idziak (Black Hawk Down, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Gattaca) will be the recipient of the Festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
The Academy has announced this year's field of contending documentary short subject films for the 86th annual Academy Awards. The crop has been trimmed down to eight, from which five nominees will be chosen. Voters from the Academy's documentary branch viewed the 40 eligible entries and submitted their ballots for tabulation. Last year's winner in the category was Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine's "Inocente." Previous winners have included "Saving Face" in 2011, "Strangers No More" in 2010 and "Music by Prudence" in 2009. (I always over-think it and get the category wrong. Sigh.) The eight remaining 2013 titles are listed below »
- Kristopher Tapley
A recent transplant from England, Stuart is a gawky, 6’ 7” web designer searching for excitement and romance in Los Angeles. Half as charming – and twice as desperate – as he thinks he is, he’s obsessed with infiltrating the glamorous world of beautiful people, who won’t let him in.
Accompanying Merchant on Hello Ladies are Christine Woods (Go On) as an unsuccessful and unsure actress, Nate Torrence (She’s Out of My League) as a man still in love with the wife that left him, and Kevin Weisman (Alias) as a crafty pick-up artist. Guests on the show include Crista Flanagan, Jenny Slate, Sean Wing and Sarah Wright.
HBO will debut a series of documentaries in the fall, including Alec Baldwin and James Toback's "Seduced and Abandoned," Whoopi Goldberg's portrait of pioneering performer Moms Mabley, and a Stephen Sondheim profile featuring the work of director Todd Haynes and others. The documentaries will come from a range of filmmakers including James Lapine, Sean and Andrea Fine, Cynthia Wade, Jon Alpert and Matthew O'Neill, James Redford and Marta Cunningham. The first film, Cunningham's "Valentine Road," debuts Oct. 7, and at least one film will premiere on each of the next nine »
- Tim Molloy
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has revealed its 276-member-strong class of 2013.
The list, published by The Hollywood Reporter, includes actors, cinematographers, designers, directors, documentarians, executives, film editors, makeup artists and hairstylists, "members-at-large," musicians, producers, PR folks, short filmmakers and animators, sound technicians, visual effects artists, and writers.
Jason Bateman, Rosario Dawson, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Milla Jovovich, Lucy Liu, Jennifer Lopez, Emily Mortimer, Sandra Oh, Jason Schwartzman, and Michael Peña are among the roster of actors, while "The Heat" and "Bridesmaids" helmer Paul Feig made the directors' cut.
"We did not change our criteria at all," says Academy president Hawk Koch of this year's larger-than-usual class. "Yes, this year there is a tremendous amount of women, a tremendous amount of people of color, people from all walks of life. This year, we asked the branches to look at everybody who wasn't in the Academy but who deserved to be. »
- Laura Larson
The 18th annual Nantucket Film Festival, which focuses on excellence in screenwriting, announced the festival winners today, in addition to the winners of its competitions for best screenplay for film and television. The prestigious Showtime Tony Cox award for best emerging screenwriter went to Destin Daniel Cretton for "Short Term 12." The audience award went to "Life According to Sam," from directors Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine. The Vimeo award for Best Writer/Director went to Ryan Coogler for "Fruitvale Station." The full winners list follows: Showtime Tony Cox Award for Best Screenwriting in a Feature Film -- Destin Daniel Cretton ("Short Term 12") Showtime Tony Cox Award for Best Screenwriting in a Short Film -- Goran Dukic ("What Do We Have in Our Pockets?") Audience Award for Best Feature -- "Life According to Sam" (directed by Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine) Audience Award for Best Short Film -- »
- Madeline Raynor
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today the 276 members of the entertainment industry invited to join organization. The list includes actors, directors, documentarians, executives, film editors, producers and more. Of those listed below, those who accept the invitations will be the only additions to the Academy's membership in 2013. "These individuals are among the best filmmakers working in the industry today," said Academy President Hawk Koch in a press release. "Their talent and creativity have captured the imagination of audiences worldwide, and I am proud to welcome each of them to the Academy." Koch also told Variety, "In the past eight or nine years, each branch could only bring in X amount of members. There were people each branch would have liked to get in but couldn't. We asked them to be more inclusive of the best of the best, and each branch was excited, because they got »
- Brad Brevet
The Academy just added 276 Oscar voters.
That’s 100 more than last year, and part of an easing of a longstanding cap on the number of new members allowed to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences each year.
AMPAS usually adds between 130 and 180 new members, replacing those who have quit or passed away. The membership now stands around 6,000.
- Anthony Breznican
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is extending invitations to join the organization to 276 artists and executives who have distinguished themselves by their contributions to theatrical motion pictures. Those who accept the invitations will be the only additions to the Academy’s membership in 2013.
“These individuals are among the best filmmakers working in the industry today,” said Academy President Hawk Koch. “Their talent and creativity have captured the imagination of audiences worldwide, and I am proud to welcome each of them to the Academy.”
The 2013 invitees are:
- Michelle McCue
The total of new invitees is exactly 100 more than were tapped in 2012. Total membership in the Academy numbers more than 6,000.
“We’re very proud,” Academy prexy Hawk Koch told Variety. “The difference this year is we relaxed the quota system. In the past eight or nine years, each branch could only bring in X amount of members. There were people each branch would have liked to get in but couldn’t. We asked them to be more inclusive of the best of the best, and each branch was excited, because they got to bring in the people who should be in the branch.”
Koch said that in particular, visual effects and documentary were among the branches with the biggest gains, reflecting their intense recent growth.
Among the other »
- Jon Weisman
Smush Media’s ultramarathon documentary to receive its world premiere at the 67th Edinburgh International Film Festival.
Desert Runners, produced in association with Salty Features and Spoken Media, follows a diverse cast of non-professional runners as they attempt to complete the four toughest ultramarathon races on Earth.
“Desert Runners is about running, but it is also about so much more,” said Steinman.
“It’s an exploration into the perceived limitations that people place upon themselves, and the mind-set necessary for some people to complete ‘impossible’ challenges.”
Melamede’s producer »
Oscar 2014: (Flexible) maximum of two winners in Best Animated Feature Film category (photo: 2013 Best Animated Feature winner Brave) The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced another rule change for the 2014 Academy Awards. This latest change affects the Animated Feature Film category. According to the Academy’s press release, from now on there will be "a maximum of two award recipients" for Best Animated Feature Film, one of whom must have a producer credit. And that’s where things get a bit confusing. Despite the "maximum of two" Oscar recipients, "the director and/or key creative individual shall continue to be a recipient, and in the circumstance of a two-person team with shared and equal director credit, a third statuette may be awarded." In other words, it’s a flexible two-person maximum. Last year, at most two individuals were listed per nominated film in the Best Animated »
- Andre Soares
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will partner with the Nantucket Film Festival as part of the fest’s 2013 edition, which also will see Glenn Close and David O. Russell participating in festival events this June.
As part of its visiting artist program, the Academy will bring this year’s doc short Oscar winners, Andrea Nix Fine and Sean Fine, to Nff for an outreach program for young filmmakers drawn from the Cine Institute of Haiti and Nantucket’s Teen Filmmaking program. The Fines will present their Oscar winning short “Inocente” and participate in a roundtable discussion with the programs’ student filmmakers. Students also will present their projects from the past year and participate in a discussion event moderated by Ben Stiller, a frequent presence at Nff.
The Fines’ feature doc “Life According to Sam,” which bowed at Sundance earlier this year, also will screen as part of this year’s fest. »
- Gordon Cox
China Eyes Merger Of TV, Film & Press Watchdogs In a move that could help to streamline China’s clearance or censorship of entertainment content, the government plans to merge the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (Sarft) and the General Administration of Press and Publication (Gapp). Currently, movie and TV distributors who want to do business in China have to navigate a sea of red tape through Sarft and the merger could help cut that down, but is unlikely to result in wholesale deregulation. Sarft would continue to oversee sensitive content in the media and add the National Copyright Administration under its umbrella. The proposed combination comes as the public is increasingly discontent with a bloated central administration, whose bureaucracy and inefficiency are at odds with a market-oriented economy, The South China Morning Post reported. The proposal, which still needs to be approved, was submitted over the weekend at the National People’s Congress. »
- NANCY TARTAGLIONE, International Editor
Affleck and Hathaway, Lawrence and Day-Lewis may have been the most notable winners on Sunday night, the artists who cemented their Hollywood legacies at the 2013 Academy Awards. But no one’s life has changed more this year from starring in an Oscar-winning movie than Inocente Izucar. The name might not ring a bell, but you’ll remember the acceptance speech for Best Documentary Short, when Inocente’s co-director Sean Fine introduced her to the world. “We want to thank this young lady who was homeless just a year ago and now she’s standing in front of all of you, »
- Jeff Labrecque
Just in case you missed the show, don't have a facebook account, twitter, a TV, radio, get the paper delivered, or have a smart phone or computer (which is weird since your on this site), here are the winners from the 85th Academy Awards: Best Picture Amour Argo (Winner) Beasts of the Southern Wild Django Unchained Lincoln Les Miserables Life of Pi Silver Linings Playbook Zero Dark Thirty Best Director Ang Lee, Life of Pi (Winner) Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook Michael Haneke, Amour Steven Spielberg, Lincoln Best Actor Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln (Winner) Denzel Washington, Flight Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook Joaquin Phoenix, The Master Best Actress Naomi Watts, The Impossible Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook (Winner) Emmanuelle Riva, Amour Quvenzhané Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild Best Supporting Actor Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained (Winner) Philip Seymour Hoffman, »
- Dave Campbell
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