7 items from 2012
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences loves the French. The nation has racked up 36 nominations for Best Foreign Language Film over the years, which is more than half the number of times the Academy has given the award. French-language films regularly appear outside of that category as well – the very first nomination for a foreign film was a nod for Best Art Direction to À Nous la Liberté in 1932. Oscar has been a Francophile since the very beginning, and it doesn’t look like he’s going to get sick of them any time soon. As far as I’m concerned, this leaves a single burning question about this year’s race. Yes, I suppose one could wonder in great detail about Amour’s Best Picture and Best Director chances, but at this point I think it definitely gets both. The real fun is in the Best Actress category. (Isn »
- Daniel Walber
Google has given their infamous Doodle honor to "The Thinker" sculptor, Auguste Rodin, on what would be his 142nd birthday.
The French artist, best known for sculptures such as "The Thinker" and "The Kiss," was largely panned by critics during most of his career, and was repeatedly denied entrance to Paris' most acclaimed art school. In the later years of his life, Rodin's busts drew him some acclaim among fans such as Oscar Wilde, and he eventually received an honorary doctorate from the University of Oxford.
Rodin married his companion of 53 years, Rose Beuret just two weeks before her death, and a matter of months before his own. He died at the age of 77.
In "Camille Claudel, 1915" -- a movie set to be released in 2013 -- Juliette Binoche plays Rodin's paramour, Camille Claudel, who famously suffered from a mental breakdown after her split with the artist. »
Previously on Season 3 of Hit Me With Your Best Shot...
Today we're officially back to weekly "Best Shot" posts with François Truffaut's biotragedy The Story Of Adele H (1975). For nearly thirty years French beauty Isabelle Adjani held the record for the Youngest Best Actress Nominee of all time; she was 20 when Adele H made her an international star. To add to Adjani's Oscar Curio factor, she still holds another record: she's the only actor or actress ever nominated twice for French language performances. Nomination #2 came for another biotragedy Camille Claudel (1988). [Marion Cotillard surely hopes to tie that particular Best Actress record later this year in Rust and Bone (2012).]
Adjani all but vanished from screens round about the time she and Daniel Day-Lewis procreated and split. The sensational Queen Margot (1994) and the reviled Diabolique (1996) with Sharon Stone were her last big draws so I assume many readers are unfamiliar and that this Best Shot subject would be a fresh choice. I did not however make the connection that »
- NATHANIEL R
With the release of a second teaser trailer of Paul Thomas Anderson's "The Master" this morning, we got another look at one of the most anticipated films of the year. And with the picture already slated for an October 13th release, for some traveling film critics and fans, and those prepared to head to Italy, the Venice Film Festival could be where the film makes its world premiere, with artistic director Alberto Barbera suggesting a few weeks back that Anderson was heading to the Lido for the fest, which kicks off on August 29th.
With the announcement of the opening film due any day now -- it was on June 21st last year and today, the fest announced their lineup of rare and restored films that will unspool -- and "The Master" trailer reminding us that its one of the candidates, it seemed like a good opportunity to look »
- Oliver Lyttelton
Jean Dujardin kissing Oscar statuette Best Actor Oscar winner Jean Dujardin kisses his Oscar statuette at the Governors Ball 2012. For his performance as a fading silent-film star in Michel Hazanavicius' The Artist, Dujardin became the first Frenchman to win an Oscar in the acting categories: Charles Boyer, Maurice Chevalier, and Gérard Depardieu had all been nominated before, but none of them had ever won. (Photo: © A.M.P.A.S.) The list of Frenchwomen who either won or were nominated for Oscars in the acting categories is much more extensive. The French-born, American-raised Claudette Colbert was the Best Actress of 1934 for Frank Capra's comedy It Happened One Night. The other French Best Actress Oscar winners are Simone Signoret for Jack Clayton's 1959 British drama Room at the Top and Marion Cotillard for Olivier Dahan's French-language Edith Piaf biopic La Vie en Rose. Additionally, Juliette Binoche was a »
- Andre Soares
Every year since 2000, the Jeonju International Film Festival has commissioned three short works for its Jeonju Digital Project and, about a month ago now, the festival announced it'd selected Raya Martin, Vimukthi Jayasundara and Ying Liang for this year's edition (you may remember the three directors' video messages). The 2011 films are still making the rounds, and in fact, when they screen tomorrow at Exit Art, two of them — Claire Denis's To the Devil and José Luis Guerín's Memories of a Morning, both 45 minutes — will be seeing their NYC premieres. The third is Jean-Marie Straub's An Heir (22 mins, image above). If you're planning on being there, you'll want to read Robert Koehler's dispatch from Locarno last summer, touching briefly on the Denis and Guerín films but really digging into the Straub.
Reading. "With the main focus on African and Asian cinema and documentary film, Camera Lucida no 7 also »
#36. La Créatrice Director/Writer: Bruno Dumont Producers: Rachid Bouchareb and Jean BréhatDistributor: Rights Available The Gist: This is about the tragic destiny of the sculptor Camille Claudel (Binoche) who in 1914 was committed by her family to a mental asylum in the South of France where she spent the last 30 years of her life and never sculpted again...(more) Cast: Juliette Binoche and Denis Podalydès List Worthy Reasons...: Unlike Gérard Depardieu, I can only picture a select few A-level French actresses who would be up to the challenge of working with someone such as Bruno Dumont and his emotionally devastating texts. It'll be a first for him (he usually works with non-pros) and in an odd karma alignment, Binoche is playing the same role that Isabelle Adjani played in 1988's titular Camille Claudel. Adjani's co-star was Depardieu. Binoche will kick butt. Release Date/Status?: The project was announced late »
7 items from 2012
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