14 items from 2015
Actors and directors have always clashed – it’s part of the process of filmmaking to butt heads over creative decisions, with director and star often having their own individual interpretations for how a movie should play out. Star and director artistically duking it out is normal on a film set, but only rarely does the process actually lead to full-blown arguments, much less physical fights.
There have, of course, been instances where actor/director partnerships have proven volatile. Faye Dunaway famously threw a cup of urine in Roman Polanski’s face in reaction to his harsh treatment of her on Chinatown, while Robert Downey Jr. has said David Fincher’s relentless tactics for drawing the performances he wanted from actors on Zodiac had him consider “garroting” the director.
With others, it should’ve been predictable from the off that things wouldn’t necessarily go smoothly – though Werner Herzog »
- Brogan Morris
By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter
Just over a year ago, Tom Quinn, who along with Jason Janego runs Radius-twc, the Weinstein Co. division that specializes in both VOD and theatrical releases, got an urgent, but mysterious phone call from Josh Braun of the Submarine sales agency. “He said, ‘Listen, I’ve got this interesting project I want to talk to you about,'” Quinn recalls. “I was like, ‘Great, what is it?’ And he goes, ‘Well, I’m not gonna talk to you about it here. Why don’t you meet me at the Red Egg in [New York’s] Chinatown for lunch. Don’t bring your cell phone.’ I was like, ‘Are you kidding?’ He was like, ‘No. Just don’t bring your cell phone.'” Chuckling, Quinn remembers, “I was like, ‘Am I gonna return to the office?'”
- Anjelica Oswald
Editor's Note: RogerEbert.com is proud to reprint Roger Ebert's 1978 entry from the Encyclopedia Britannica publication "The Great Ideas Today," part of "The Great Books of the Western World." Reprinted with permission from The Great Ideas Today ©1978 Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.
It's a measure of how completely the Internet has transformed communication that I need to explain, for the benefit of some younger readers, what encyclopedias were: bound editions summing up all available knowledge, delivered to one's home in handsome bound editions. The "Great Books" series zeroed in on books about history, poetry, natural science, math and other fields of study; the "Great Ideas" series was meant to tie all the ideas together, and that was the mission given to Roger when he undertook this piece about film.
Given the venue he was writing for, it's probably wisest to look at Roger's long, wide-ranging piece as a snapshot of the »
- Roger Ebert
I love movie and television soundtracks. I’ll often use a given soundtrack while I work, letting it fuel my writing. I can’t listen to music with lyrics in them; that interferes with my process. I’ll get themes, characters, even scenes or whole plots from the music. Soundtrack music is in service of the story that the film is trying to tell; it’s a part of the narrative, heightening the emotion that’s being invoked.
I have my own particular favorites. The composers usually have a large body of work but certain key works resonate within me – Jerry Goldsmith’s Chinatown and Patton, James Horner with Field of Dreams, Shaun Davey’s Waking Ned Devine, Elmer Bernstein’s To Kill A Mockingbird (has there ever been a more beautiful and evocative theme?) and, of course, The Magnificent Seven.
I’ve also been very fond of Alan Silvestri »
- John Ostrander
My favorite actor of all time accepting an award for one of my favorite movies of all time might just be the greatest acceptance speech ever. It’s 1975 and Jack Nicholson is seen in the video accepting his Leading Actor award for his performance in The Last Detail and Chinatown on the set of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest. You can also see a young Danny Devito in character, how great is this? Too bad Nurse Ratched had to ruin it all. This clip was posted online as part »
- Graham McMorrow
Now this is a list that could result in a lot of fascinating dissection and thanks to HitFix it comes to our attention almost three years after it was originally released back in 2012, celebrating the Motion Picture Editors Guild's 75th anniversary. Over at HitFix, Kris Tapley asks, "Is this news to anyone elsec" Um, yes, I find it immensely interesting and a perfect starting point for anyone looking to further explore the art of film editing. In an accompanying article we get the particulars concerning what films were eligible and how films were to be considered: In our Jan-feb 12 issue, we asked Guild members to vote on what they consider to be the Best Edited Films of all time. Any feature-length film from any country in the world was eligible. And by "Best Edited," we explained, we didn't just mean picture; sound, music and mixing were to be considered as well. »
- Brad Brevet
After winning the best film actor Bafta for his roles in The Last Detail and Chinatown, Jack Nicholson performs a spectacular glass-smashing acceptance speech from the set (in Oregon) of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, which was still in production. Other cast members remain in character as Nicholson tells viewers: 'I've been institutionalised.' The 2015 Bafta awards take place on 8 February at the Royal Opera House, London
• See BAFTA's full 100 Moments here Continue reading »
- Guardian Staff
A random bit of researching on a Tuesday night led me to something I didn't know existed: The Motion Picture Editors Guild's list of the 75 best-edited films of all time. It was a feature in part celebrating the Guild's 75th anniversary in 2012. Is this news to anyone else? I confess to having missed it entirely. Naturally, I had to dig in. What was immediately striking to me about the list — which was decided upon by the Guild membership and, per instruction, was considered in terms of picture and sound editorial as opposed to just the former — was the most popular decade ranking. Naturally, the 1970s led with 17 mentions, but right on its heels was the 1990s. I wouldn't have expected that but I happen to agree with the assessment. Thelma Schoonmaker's work on "Raging Bull" came out on top, an objectively difficult choice to dispute, really. It was so transformative, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Everyone knows Woody Allen. At least, everyone thinks they know Woody Allen. His plumage is easily identifiable: horn-rimmed glasses, baggy suit, wispy hair, kvetching demeanor, ironic sense of humor, acute fear of death. As is his habitat: New York City, though recently he has flown as far afield as London, Barcelona, and Paris. His likes are well known: Bergman, Dostoevsky, New Orleans jazz. So too his dislikes: spiders, cars, nature, Wagner records, the entire city of Los Angeles. Whether or not these traits represent the true Allen, who’s to say? It is impossible to tell, with Allen, where cinema ends and life begins, an obfuscation he readily encourages. In the late nineteen-seventies, disillusioned with the comedic success he’d found making such films as Sleeper (1973), Love and Death (1975), and Annie Hall (1977), he turned for darker territory with Stardust Memories (1980), a film in which, none too surprisingly, he plays a »
- Graham Daseler
Written for the screen and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
Even if you were not around during the 1970s, Inherent Vice comes across as a faded, nostalgic memory. Being a faithful adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s novel, the film recounts the dying days of the free love era, laced with the look, feel and paraphernalia of the subculture. Anderson’s comedic thriller peppers itself with restless, almost out of place laughter, while dedicating itself to the themes of the early Seventies. One is reminded of private-eye classics such as Roman Polanski’s Chinatown and Robert Altman’s The Long Goodbye, with traces of Zucker-Abrahams comedies like Airplane! and The Naked Gun. For many, the homage to 1970s filmmaking will be a very real and thrilling look down memory lane. For others, it’ll be a history lesson like no other found in modern day filmmaking.
Larry ‘Doc »
- Christopher Clemente
At a loss for what to watch this week? From new DVDs and Blu-rays, to what's streaming on Netflix, we've got you covered.
New on DVD and Blu-ray
David Fincher's latest dark 'n' twisty drama stars Rosamund Pike and Ben Affleck as a pair of beautiful people who do terrible things to each other. This adaptation of Gillian Flynn's best-selling novel is worth it just for the scene in which Tyler Perry, as a high-powered lawyer who specializes in cases where men are accused of murdering their wives, throws gummy bears at Affleck's head.
This German film is for those with particularly strong stomachs, but if you're up for it, this is a wild ride. »
- Jenni Miller
Roman Polanski is facing fresh extradition efforts in Poland over his 1977 sex charge.
Warsaw's prosecutor general's office has received an official request from Los Angeles prosecutors to extradite the filmmaker to the Us.
A spokesperson for the prosecutor general's office told Reuters: "Prosecutors will want to summon Polanski for questioning."
Polanski has been working in his native Poland on a new film project in recent weeks.
Polish prosecutors previously spoke to Polanski about the Us charge in October, but chose not to take any action at that time.
The Chinatown filmmaker fled the Us for France in 1978 after reaching a plea agreement that included pleading guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse in relation to an incident involving a 13-year-old girl.
Polanski hired noted attorney Alan M Dershowitz late last year to work on overturning the sex charge in Los Angeles County Superior Court.
Los Angeles prosecutors have unsuccessfully sought to extradite »
Polish authorities have received an extradition request from the U.S. to bring filmmaker and director Roman Polanski back to the country he had unlawful sex with a 13-year-old in 1977.
The latest attempt by the U.S. comes as Polanski prepares for his film “An Officer and a Spy.” The extradition request that preceded Wednesday’s attempt came in October, 2014, in which the U.S. filed an arrest warrant when Polanski traveled to Warsaw. There, Polanski was brought in for questioning by Polish authorities but was not arrested.
Also Read: Roman Polanski Seeks Hearing to Close Statutory Rape Case
- Jordan Chariton
#10. Chinatown (1974)
Lost to: The Godfather Part II
Well, no one will argue that it should have won, but still. Roman Polanski’s film made a true leading man out of Jack Nicholson. It grabbed eleven nominations, only taking home one. That being said, that one was for Original Screenplay, written by Robert Towne, which may be the greatest even written. Entire courses could be taught on this screenplay alone and Polanski and his actors delivered a perfect translation of it to the screen. Also starring Faye Dunaway and the great John Huston, the story of power and corruption still stands as one of the greatest films of the 1970′s (or any decade for that matter). It’s just a shame it ran into the greatest movie sequel of all time.
#9. Cabaret (1972)
Lost to: The Godfather
Seems weird, doesn’t it? Well, the Liza Minnelli vehicle is on this list for »
- Joshua Gaul
14 items from 2015
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