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Cannes, France — Sofia Coppola was just 8 years old when she first came to the Cannes Film Festival. Her father, Francis Ford Coppola, was there to premiere a work-in-progress cut of a film he had spent years wrestling with: "Apocalypse Now."
"I have nice memories of Cannes," Coppola said in an interview Thursday on the roof of the Palais, the festival center. "I remember coming here as a kid and then my first movie, `Virgin Suicides,' had our first screening ever here. I feel like my career started here."
Growing up in such surroundings, one would think, would have heavily informed Coppola's latest film, "The Bling Ring," a deadpan drama about celebrity-obsessed teenagers in Los Angeles who break into the homes of Paris Hilton and other stars. But Coppola says the movie world she grew up in isn't the same as today's star-crazed culture.
"I definitely noticed that people would act different around my dad. »
Trevor Hogg chats with visual effects supervisors Christopher Townsend, Erik Nash, Bryan Grill, Alessandro Cioffi, Guy Williams, Matt Dessero, Venti Hristova and Vincent Cirelli; animation supervisor Simone Kraus, previsualization supervisor Todd Constantine and postvisualization supervisor Gerardo Ramirez about their work on Iron Man 3. Beware there are spoilers....
“Marvel is a fun and passionate group to work with,” states Christopher Townsend who went from being the visual effects supervisor responsible for Captain America: The First Avenger (2011) to Iron Man 3 (2013). “Their type of films allow for visual effects to be played in a varied playground. It’s great.” The native of Britain jokes, “I keep on coming back for more punishment!” A change behind the camera took place in the third instalment of the franchise which launched the Marvel Universe into the realm of cinematic blockbusters. “Marvel is always keen of eyeing and working with not fans or run of »
As the Cannes Film Festival gets underway today, IMDb has released its list of the 10 most popular films to have been screened in competition for the Palme d'Or, based on user votes. Unsurprisingly, Quentin Tarantino makes a good showing on the list, dominating in the top three spots with 1994's "Pulp Fiction" 2009's "Inglourious Basterds" and 2005's "Sin City" (for which he's credited as "special guest director" following Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez). Since this is a popularity vote, "Shrek" lands a spot above "Taxi Driver."Top 10 Most Popular Cannes Films1. Pulp Fiction (dir. Quentin Tarantino, 1994)2. Inglourious Basterds (dir. Quentin Tarantino, 2009)3. Sin City (dirs. Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez, Quentin Tarantino 2005)4. No Country for Old Men (dirs. Joel and Ethan Coen, 2007)5. Shrek (2001, dir. Andrew Adamson, Vicky Jenson)6. Taxi Driver (dir. Martin Scorsese, 1976)7. El laberinto del fauno (Pan's Labyrinth) (dir. Guillermo del Toro, 2006)8. Apocalypse Now (dir. »
- Beth Hanna
The Cannes film festival is the single most prestigious film festival in the world. Known for fostering and cultivating cinematic auteurs from every region of the globe, it is a festival that commonly rewards films with high aspirations towards what the art of cinema could and should be. The festival’s highest honor, the Palme d’Or, has been bestowed on such lofty films as Luchino Visconti’s The Leopard, Claude Lelouch’s A Man and a Woman, Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blowup, Lars Van Trier’s Dancer in the Dark, and Cristian Mungui’s 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days.
It may come as no surprise then, given Cannes’ inclination towards high-brow world cinema, that the Oscars and the Croisette don’t often cross paths in terms of which films they consider deserving of awards. In fact, only once has the Academy’s selection for Best Picture coincided with the Palme d’Or winner, »
- Christopher Lominac
"I would love to make Dead Space, I'll tell you that right now," said John Carpenter last week, adding the celebrated director, expert moustache cultivator and avid gamer to the the swelling ranks of reputable film-makers (ie those whose names aren't spelled "Paul Ws Anderson" or "Uwe Boll") who recognise games as another viable well of narrative inspiration – equal in richness, if not yet in popular reputation, to any other artform.
And it's difficult to envisage a director better suited or more qualified to interpret the dank corridors and squelchy, shambling horrors of the Usg Ishimura. The Thing, The Fog and Halloween clearly influenced Visceral's icky franchise, and Carpenter's ideas feeding back into a mythology they helped create gives a pleasing sense of symmetry. His skill with suspense and »
- Luke Holland
Acclaimed actor Martin Sheen dished out some jokes when he gave the commencement address at La Roche College in Pennsylvania on May 4, but he didn't shy away from politics either.
Sheen is well-known for playing President Josiah Bartlet on television show "The West Wing," but during his acting career he was in feature films "The Departed," "Wall Street" and "Apocalypse Now," and voiced a character on the television show "Captain Planet," to name a few.
Sheen, 72, has a history of activism too, supporting the 1960s farm worker movement, supporting environmental causes and openly opposing the Iraq war, which he discussed in the speech.
"In the days and weeks leading up to the invasion, I spoke out repeatedly against that war at a series of nonviolent demonstrations, peace rallies and press conferences, all of which only served to isolate me to a small minority of fellow Americans," Sheen said. "Then on the feast of St. »
- The Huffington Post
Hollywood and the world's most prestigious film festival, Cannes, have conducted an on-off romance down the years – and now they're closer than ever. But have they got too cosy? As the Croisette opens for business, Xan Brooks investigates
In among the ligging and rigging of last year's Cannes film festival, visitors may have spotted James Toback and Alec Baldwin trudging wearily back and forth along the Croisette. The director and star, it now transpires, were in town to shoot a very meta documentary – a film about their efforts to actually make a film. For a 10-day spell they interviewed everyone from Ryan Gosling to Martin Scorsese, Nicole Kidman to Roman Polanski. Along the way they took the temperature of a festival perched at the intersection between art and commerce. The documentary's title, Seduced and Abandoned, alludes to Baldwin's description of the film industry as "the world's worst girlfriend". But it »
- Xan Brooks
The 2013 Le Conversazioni literary festival celebrating the relationship between art, architecture, literature, and film began at the Morgan Library & Museum on Thursday, May 9 in New York. Artistic Director of Le Conversazioni, Antonio Monda, discussed with performance artist Marina Abramovic and architect Daniel Libeskind films that influenced their lives and work. Nine clips from the chosen movies, four each, plus one from the moderator at the end, accompanied the sold-out event.
From Abramovic we learn how Willem Dafoe swam his way to become an Antichrist (because he couldn't walk on water this time), how Apocalypse Now can be a holy choice, and how Alain Robbe-Grillet's words lead you down the right corridors. Daniel Libeskind, on the other hand, explains how even without a word of English, Cary Grant, Frank Lloyd Wright and Hitchcock can explain all that's powerful in America.
The Films of My Life »
- Anne-Katrin Titze
As the documentary festival enters its 20th year with a record number of film submissions, Daniel Dylan Wray guides you through the programme and events
Last year's festival featured a surprise performance by the star of a film that would go on to win an Oscar, so you would think the organisers of 2013's Sheffield Doc/Fest would be feeling the pressure just one month from curtains-up.
But the festival's programmer, Hussain Currimbhoy, seems relatively calm on deadline day for the event's 20th anniversary programme. "It's pressure every year," he says. "We pressure ourselves to make it the best programme every year and the best festival every year".
That task is made harder by the festival's swelling attendance and growing film submissions, which this year topped 2,000 for the first time. These are whittled down to just 120 (including crossover platforms and shorts); only 80 of these will make it through as feature films. »
They "didn't come with soundtracks,” the author Mohsin Hamid recently mused in an essay on why he came to love novels. Readers of them, unlike movie watchers, "got more of the source code -- the abstract symbols we call letters and words -- and assembled more of the story themselves."
As the wide release of Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby" nears, Hamid's metaphor feels almost like a challenge. F. Scott Fitzgerald's most famous work is definitive American source code, its symbols lodged in the minds of generations of readers. Can watching a film version of this code, as cracked by someone else, ever match the pleasure of reading the book?
Not as long as it continues to be adapted the way it has been for decades, according to Joseph O'Neill. The novelist, whose slow-burning thriller Netherland drew comparisons to The Great Gatsby when it was published in 2008, is »
- Mallika Rao
Baz Luhrmann is the latest to try translating a celebrated book to the big screen, but there's danger in being too faithful to the text
Gatsby fever won't break until Baz Luhrmann's new adaptation opens this week, but this fifth film version of F Scott Fitzgerald's classic novel raises an interesting question: what makes a good adaptation, anyway? Why does Stanley Kubrick's The Shining merit documentaries in its own right, and Stephen King's The Shining end up forgotten among the made-for-tv mini-series? What should we hope for – or fear – from Luhrmann's take?
Adapting a novel or short story into film is a lot translation – turning words on a page into the language of movies: angles, actors and images. Filmmakers, like translators, are stuck in the middle between the original and the audience, and have to balance three elements: story, style and ambition.
Story might seem obvious, »
- Alan Yuhas
It’s hard to overstate just how important visuals are to the quality of a film. The aesthetic of a film has to be thought out just as much as the screenplay as it is essential in setting the desired mood, just as in genres such as film noir, where the black and white visuals and use of shadows help establish the tone for the entire film.
When taken to the next level, visuals can be more effective in telling a story than actual dialogue would be. Take Pixar’s Up as an example, and the incredible wordless montage at the beginning of the film – try to imagine how it would have worked if the filmmakers had emphasized dialogue over visual storytelling. The result is hardly as inspiring as that utterly devastating sequence.
The standards for this list included how well the individual films manipulated both natural scenery as well as special effects, »
- Paul Sorrells
This beautiful poster for Xan Cassavetes’s vampire yarn Kiss of the Damned, which opens in theaters today, was designed and illustrated by Akiko Stehrenberger, whom I interviewed in 2010 after having selected her Funny Games poster as my favorite movie poster of the last decade.
I asked Akiko recently if she would choose ten of her all-time favorite posters to share with us, to give us an idea of her influences and aesthetic leanings, but first of all we spoke about the inspiration behind this delightfully retro poster. She told me how she was definitely inspired by the work of the great American poster illustrator Bob Peak (1927-1992).
“I took notes from his Petulia and Funny Girl, where things fall away to white and become a simplified graphic element. This falling away to white technique, I also incorporate into my own personal portrait work.”
“I also took a big lead »
- Adrian Curry
One of the strongest Us drama imports to hit these shores in a long while, Hannibal makes its UK debut courtesy of Sky Living early next week.
Digital Spy spoke to Hugh Dancy - who plays Lecter's friend, confidante and future nemesis Will Graham - about what to expect from the new horror series, the spectre of Anthony Hopkins and the path to Red Dragon...
How did you feel when you were first approached for Hannibal? Were you aware of the Lecter movies?
Pope Francis movie in the works? Friend of the Poor: The Pope Francis Story is the working title of a projected English-language biopic about the recently elected pope, born Jorge Mario Bergoglio in Buenos Aires. According to the National Catholic Register‘s Joseph Pronechen, German-born producer and Catholic convert Christian Peschken (listed on the IMDb as Chris Peschken) decided to make a movie about the first American pope (as in, from the Americas) after watching Pope Francis appear on the balcony at the Vatican on the day of his election. The National Catholic Register report states that an "European investment group has already approved a $25-million budget" for Friend of the Poor: The Pope Francis Story — which doesn’t even have a screenplay ready. Amg Films, a company that specializes in Catholic-themed movies, would handle sales. Peschken has invited Spanish filmmaker Antonio Cuadri, whose best known effort is probably the »
- Andre Soares
It’s hard to imagine Catwoman played by anyone besides Michelle Pfeiffer or Harrison Ford not in the iconic role of Indiana Jones. But it almost happened on several occasions. Whether the actor was fired from set or just pulled out last minute due to the always convenient “scheduling conflicts” excuse, the person never made it to the big screen in these films.
Original Star: James Remar
Replacement: Michael Biehn
Original Star: Christian Bale
Replacement: Christian Bale
This one is a bit bizarre. Christian Bale was originally offered the role of Bateman but then the studio decided to go in a different direction. They hired Leonardo DiCaprio the role but he dropped out after the success of Titanic. The part was then offered to Ewan McGregor, but »
- Stacy Lambe
To begin with, I’m going to issue the obligatory spoiler warning: Iron Man 3 has been released in some markets, but not all. So if you have not seen the film, please be aware that this article will contain significant spoilers for key plot elements of the movie. If you have not seen the movie and don’t want to be spoiled, please turn away now.
With Iron Man 3, Shane Black did not have an enviable task. He had to follow up after Jon Favreau’s first two Iron Man films with Favreau looking over his shoulder the entire time (Favreau was not only a producer, but also cast in the movie, once more reprising his role as Tony’s bodyguard/driver, Happy Hogan). Not only that, but this was the first Marvel film after Joss Whedon raised the bar for superhero movies everywhere with The Avengers, as »
- Percival Constantine
When a Nazi collaborator is led into the Belarusian forest to be executed, why doesn't he protest? Sergei Loznitsa's chilling drama explores the agonies of war and puts European history on trial
The fog of the title is the fog of war, the fog of fear and the abysmal fog of European history: it is a kind of residual pall of smoke across the field of battle – maybe it also means the obliteration brought by death itself. This is the chilling and mysterious historical parable from film-maker Sergei Loznitsa, based on the 1989 novel by the Belarusian author Vasili Bykov, resembling Elem Klimov's Come and See. (Bykov also wrote the 1970 novel The Ordeal, filmed by Larisa Shepitko as The Ascent.)
Its subject is the Nazis' invasion of the Soviet Union, and in particular the poisonous shame of collaboration that they disseminated in every part of the Reich. An important »
- Peter Bradshaw
In 1983, Francis Ford Coppola had plenty of greatness under his belt from The Godfather, The Conversation, The Godfather: Part II and Apocalypse Now, but some may say 1982's One from the Heart was the beginning of the end... at least the end of the Coppola we came to know in the '70s. Sure, The Godfather: Part III saw seven Oscar nominations, but ask anyone and they're sure to point it out as the weakest of the trilogy by a mile. Films such as Peggy Sue Got Married, Dracula and even The Rainmaker aren't half-bad and I'll happily admit to loving 90% of Tetro, but the Coppola star doesn't shine as it once did. Such a situation can result in films being forgotten, overlooked and never revisited again. The lack of appreciation for the last 30 years of Coppola's directorial career has allowed me to easily avoid -- wrongly or not -- »
- Brad Brevet
While Tom Cruise flogs the so-so reviewed Oblivion, his last feature effort, Jack Reacher, is coming to home video on May 7. According to the PR: One of the most compelling heroes ever to step from novel to screen makes his highly-anticipated home entertainment debut when Jack Reacher blasts his way onto Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand on May 7, 2013 from Paramount Home Media Distribution. The film will be available for Digital Download on April 23rd. Tom Cruise tackles the title role with the brute force his character is known for and his “tightly controlled performance holds our attention all the way through to the tense finale” (Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News). Based on best-selling author Lee Child’s wildly popular series of novels, Jack Reacher was adapted for the screen and directed by Academy Award-winner Christopher McQuarrie (Best Original Screenplay, The Usual Suspects, 1995). Filled with heart-pounding action, thrills and a “killer chase scene” (Chris Vognar, »
- ComicMix Staff
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