10 items from 2015
The set decorator, costume designer and production designer will receive the Art Directors Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the 20th Annual Excellence In Production Design Awards on January 31, 2016.
Von Brandenstein is one of four women to be inducted into the 2016 Adg Hall of Fame for her work.
She debuted in 1972 as a set decorator on The Candidate and subsequently workedas a costume designer on Between The Lines and Saturday Night Fever, then moved into art direction after teaming with her husband on Hester Street. She won the Academy Award for Amadeus in 1985 for Production Design.
“Patrizia von Brandenstein’s work as a production designer is vast and extraordinary, and we are proud to rank her among the best in the history of our profession,” said Adg council chair Marcia Hinds.
“She has forged the path for many future women, finding success in a predominately male profession. Patrizia is an accomplished, talented and versatile »
Patrizia von Brandenstein will receive the Art Directors Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
The award will be presented at the 20th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards on Jan. 31 at the Beverly Hilton.
Von Brandenstein began her film career in 1972 as a set decorator on “The Candidate” and subsequently worked as a costume designer on “Between the Lines” and “Saturday Night Fever.” She teamed with her husband and fellow production designer, Stuart Wurtzel, on “Hester Street” and moved into art direction for “Breaking Away” and “Ragtime.”
She collaborated with Mike Nichols on “Silkwood,” “Working Girl” and “Postcards From the Edge.” Her additional production credits include “A Chorus Line,” “Billy Bathgate,” “Leap of Faith,” “A Simple Plan,” “Shaft,” “The Last Station” and “Albert Nobbs. »
- Dave McNary
When we think about the “writer/director” we often think about the works of Quentin Tarantino, Kevin Smith, Paul Thomas Anderson, Jean-Luc Godard or Lars Von Trier. The auteurs who charge into the uphill battle of putting their own story to film. It’s more than a credit, it’s a type of filmmaker – one that more often than not starts outside of the studio system, one that more often than not considers themselves a writer first and a director second, one that falls in love with their own dialog. It’s very common now but it didn’t used to be.
75 years ago this week a film was released with the first “Written and Directed by” credit, making official something that had been going on in movie making since the evolution of narrative filmmaking and giving birth to the modern day writer/director. The first credited writer/director: playwright Preston Sturges, »
- Charlie Sanford
Lovers of odd and neglected vintage cinema can rejoice in the repackaging of Michael Ritchie’s weird sophomore title, Prime Cut. With all the menace of a Dick Francis novel and a perverse comedic streak akin to the tastes of John Waters, this misbegotten feature hasn’t received the notable following it deserves for one glaring reason—it’s increasingly warped treatment of women, which may have seemed enlightened for the period, but eventually only adds to the problematic misogyny that never abates. As far as its handling of more sensational, exploitational elements, Ritchie and screenwriter Robert Dillon manage to smooth its edges with breakneck pacing, sarcastic repartee, and a handful of impressively orchestrated face-offs.
- Nicholas Bell
Has any contemporary movie star more intriguingly chafed at the gilded prison of stardom than Robert Redford? Certainly, he was not the first — or the last — matinee idol who endeavored to show us there was more to him than just a pretty face (or, in Redford’s particular case, that California tan, those blazing baby blues, and that wonderfully, ridiculously tousled hair).
Some actors, so inclined, stretch themselves in their choice of material; others add producing, directing, and even political activism to the mix. But “Bob” did all that and still felt somehow unfulfilled. So, rather like a fussy housewife forever rearranging the living room furniture, he gazed out at a sizable property he owned in the mountains of Utah and thought that an institute devoted to the cultivation and support of American independent filmmakers might look awfully nice over there.
If Sundance now seems nearly as iconic as Redford himself, »
- Scott Foundas
Is this heaven? Nope, it’s Opening Week.
It all started Sunday night with the Cardinals at the Cubs with St. Louis winning 3 to 0.
To celebrate the first pitch of Opening Week, here’s our list of the best Baseball movies.
One of the best baseball biopics to come along over the years, The Rookie, starring Dennis Quaid, tells the true story of Jim Morris, a man who finally gets a shot at his lifelong dream-pitching in the big leagues. A high school science teacher/baseball coach, Morris’ players make a bet with him:if they win district, »
- Movie Geeks
Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury and Audience Award winner "Me and Earl and the Dying Girl" is heading to theaters slightly earlier than expected. Fox Searchlight originally announced "Earl" would open in limited release on July 1. Now, the studio has reconsidered and the acclaimed dramedy will debut in limited release on June 12. The new date actually puts "Earl" on the same opening day as another Sundance hit, "Dope," although Open Road Films is making an eye-popping move by opening that film wide against expected blockbuster "Jurassic World." "Earl" will now avoid opening in the same frame as Woody Allen's "Irrational Man" and Judd Apatow's "Trainwrecked" which could siphon some of its audience in key metro markets. One thing is for sure, with a June release date Searchlight is going to need to get a trailer out sooner rather than later. That means a sneak peek for anyone who »
- Gregory Ellwood
Almost exactly a year ago, John Ridley accepted the Academy Award for best adapted screenplay for “12 Years a Slave,” a film that changed the way we think about race in our history. The next morning, he flew to Austin to begin filming ABC’s “American Crime,” a television show he hopes will change the way we think about race today.
“I don’t know that I’ve had an experience quite like this one,” says Ridley, 49, who serves as executive producer. “When I look at it from outside to inside, is there a show like this on network television? Very fundamentally, no.”
An 11-episode anthology series, “American Crime” chronicles a murder in Modesto, Calif., not through the perspective of the cops and the lawyers, but through the victims’ parents, the suspects and the community at large. It tackles hot button issues of faith and religion, ethnicity and class. It is, »
- Debra Birnbaum
George Lucas offered a bleak assessment of the current state of the film business during a panel discussion with Robert Redford at the Sundance Film Festival on Thursday, saying that the movies are “more and more circus without any substance behind it.”
However, the “Star Wars” director hit back at critics who said his role in kicking off the blockbuster film business has watered down cinematic storytelling.
“If you go into ‘Star Wars’ and see what’s going on there, there’s a lot more substance than circus,” he argued.
In its day, “Star Wars” represented a major breakthrough in technology, and it’s easy to discern a throughline from the galaxy far, far away to the comic book movies and special-effects driven productions that dominate today’s movie screens. The tools he helped popularize were all in the service of plot, he argued.
“All art is technology,” said Lucas. »
- Brent Lang
Young Robert Redford and politics: 'The Candidate' and 'All the President's Men' (photo: Robert Redford as Bob Woodward in 'All the President's Men') A young Robert Redford can be seen The Candidate, All the President's Men, Three Days of the Condor, and Downhill Racer as Turner Classic Movies' Redford series comes to a close this evening. The world of politics is the focus of the first three films, each one of them well-regarded box-office hits. The last title, which shows that politics is part of life no matter what, is set in the world of competitive sports. 'The Candidate' In the Michael Ritichie-directed The Candidate (1972), Robert Redford plays idealistic liberal Democrat Bob McKay, who, with no chance of winning, is convinced to run against the Republican incumbent in a fight for a California seat in Congress. See, McKay is too handsome. Too young. Too liberal. »
- Andre Soares
10 items from 2015
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