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In May, The Academy began the video series “Academy Originals” focusing on the behind the scenes artists and the various creative processes that get a film from page to screen.
Since the launch, AMPAS has released 16 episodes that have covered everything from how Jurassic Park changed the VFX world to an episode about everyday people toiling away at screenplays in coffee shops.
The videos below highlight women filmmakers and how their considerable contributions inspire young girls to become filmmakers.
The independent artist finds that making a low-budget movie like Middle Of Nowhere comes from “being out in the world. It comes from observing people, asking questions – people want to talk.”
- Michelle McCue
A cross, constructed entirely of lightbulbs, shines behind David Oyelowo as he approaches the pulpit of Atlanta’s 145-year-old Wheat Street Baptist Church. It’s a steamy June night, and 500 extras—including U.S. Rep. John Lewis, a key architect of the civil rights movement—eagerly await the British-born actor’s first attempt to preach as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But just as director Ava DuVernay puts on her headphones and does a last sound check, a freak lightning storm threatens the safety of the crew and forces the production to shut down.
Delays are nothing new in the »
- Nicole Sperling
The Toronto International Film Festival (Tiff) is coming up fast, but organizers are still putting final touches on the festival’s impressive lineup. Highlights of today’s newly announced titles include the world premiere of the anticipated Bill Murray starrer St. Vincent, for which the actor is tipped to garner awards buzz, and Palme D’Or winner Winter Sleep‘s North American debut.
Check out all the announcements below…
Denzel Washington is one of the film world’s most prominent leading men, known best for his galvanizing portrayals of both real-life figures (Malcolm X, The Hurricane, American Gangster) and fictional characters (Philadelphia, Devil in a Blue Dress, Flight). Washington returns to the Festival starring in The Equalizer, an intense thriller that reunites him with director Antoine Fuqua (Brooklyn’s Finest, Shooter, Olympus Has Fallen) for the first time since their Oscar-winning collaboration on Training Day. »
- Isaac Feldberg
It's just two weeks to go until the Toronto International Film Festival, and organizers are putting the final touches on the lineup. Sorry, still no sign of Terrence Malick. Today comes even more highlights added to the Tiff slate: The hugely buzzed, Bill Murray starring "St. Vincent" will make its world premiere; Palme d'Or winner "Winter Sleep" gets its North American debut; James Franco's "The Sound And The Fury" crosses the pond from Venice; Martin Scorsese's doc "The 50 Year Argument" arrives in Canada; and other movies to keep an eye on include efforts from Ross Katz, Julie Taymor and more. Tiff runs from September 4-14. Additions to the lineup below. Mavericks Conversation With… Denzel Washington and Antoine Fuqua Denzel Washington is one of the film world’s most prominent leading men, known best for his galvanizing portrayals of both real-life figures (Malcolm X, The Hurricane, American Gangster) and fictional. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Affrm has announced an upcoming Affrm Rebel online panel titled "More Than Meets The Eye," which will feature top behind-the-camera industry professionals in conversation on art and the business. This panel is exclusive to Affrm Rebel membership owners. So if you're not a member, become one! To do so, click here. The online event will take place on Wednesday, August 20th, hosted by Reelblack's Mike Dennis, via Google Hangout. The industry professionals who will make up the panel are: Ruth Carter, Costume Designer | Selma, The Butler, Malcolm X Christian Epps, Lighting Designer | Ain't Them Bodies Saints, Middle Of Nowhere, Belly Aisha Coley, Casting Director »
- Tambay A. Obenson
Madrid – Denzel Washington will receive a career achievement 2014 Donostia Lifetime Achievement Award at September’s 62nd San Sebastian Festival, the highest-profile fest in the Spanish-speaking world.
Sony Pictures’ big-screen redo of the ‘80s hit TV show, with Washington playing McCall, a hero who helps the hopelessly helpless, “The Equalizer” is already being talked up as a potential awards contender, though it will not be seen until it world premieres at the Toronto Festival where, on paper at least it weighs in as on of the festival’s highlights and commercial heavyweights.
Oscar talk is a reflection, however, of the kudos trawl for “Training Day,” the first teaming of Fuqua and Washington which earned the U.S. actor his second Academy Award after a supporting actor nod for »
- John Hopewell
It would be difficult to determine in which domain Nat Hentoff, premiere jazz critic and highly controversial First Amendment rights champion, contributed more to the public consciousness. Documentarian David L. Lewis makes no attempt to do so in “The Pleasures of Being Out of Step,” cavalierly swinging back and forth between Hentoff’s musical and political activism, much as Hentoff himself did. Stooped at almost 90 but feisty and humor-filled as ever, Hentoff presides over a film rich in the sounds and occasional sights of legendary cultural figures, from Lenny Bruce and Malcolm X to Bob Dylan and Coleman Hawkins.
Controversy-seeking yet affably mild-mannered, Hentoff thoroughly sticks to his beliefs with an iconoclasm that has nothing to do with political correctness. The fact that he started writing out of a passionate commitment to jazz artists gave his writing an immediacy and engagement that, when coupled with his intellectual acuity, gifted jazz »
- Ronnie Scheib
Cities with active repertory theaters offer options for constructing cross-town do-it-yourself double-features, and a chance this Sunday to follow Malcolm X at BAMcinématek’s Spike Lee retro with Dinesh D’Souza’s America: Imagine the World Without Her seemed too dialectically productive to pass up. The connecting common component turned out to be a compact Malcolm soundbite (“We don’t see any American Dream. We’ve experienced only the American Nightmare!”), recited by Denzel Washington at the end of a longer peroration in Lee’s opening credits and presented as a stand-alone snippet from the real Malcolm in D’Souza’s film. It’s no surprise America ditches the […] »
- Vadim Rizov
Yes, another day, another anniversary. But this one is quite noteworthy. Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing" turns 25 on Monday. It is a film I first saw when I was young, but I wasn't at all ready for it. I saw it again in film school and noticed I had grown with it, but it still whipped up complex feelings (as only the best films can). I've revisited it a number of times over the years and come to cherish it as one of the greatest pieces of cinema ever conjured, but the Academy frankly seemed like it was holding its nose just to give it the two nominations it received a quarter century ago. Kim Basinger had the right idea when the night of the Oscars came. "The best film of the year is not even nominated [for Best Picture] and it's 'Do the Right Thing,'" the "Batman" star said, »
- Kristopher Tapley
This life came so close to never happening.
Spike Lee, as prolific as he is, has relatively few of his films on blu-ray. Films older than the medium that aren't bona fide hits/classics like Malcolm X (1992) or Do the Right Thing (1989), are only now being released in two-film sets. The first and ludicrously better-received pair is 25th Hour (2002) and He Got Game (1998). Both films depict characters on the cusp of major, life-altering events struggling to find trust and safety. For those viewers who know Lee from the bombast and socio-political persona would do well to refresh their impressions of the man with these two films. They are deeply thoughtful, socially aware, and emotional stories presented in a fresh manner with a great visual style.
- Jason Ratigan
Could you imagine if this had actually happened in multiple categories including Best Picture, instead of Oscar embracing Driving Miss Daisy's retrograde race relations?
Imagine the 1989 Oscars with 'Spike Lee Joint' fever instead of a just two nominations (Supporting Actor and Screenplay) because they had to give it up somewhere for the critical darling.
Imagine Rosie Perez dancing furiously to all the Best Original Song nominees !!! Fight the power, Rosie.
Think of the after-effects with Hollywood's most coveted prize going to a black film twenty-four years before 12 Years a Slave (2013).
See Malcolm X ride high in 1992 due to Spike Lee momentum and Denzel Washington clearing Oscar #2 long before Training Day and blocking Al Pacino's "hoo-ah"! (Pfeiffer would also have an Oscar, come to think of it)
Kim Basinger wouldn't have had any snub to get all righteously indignant about as she introduced one of the Best Picture nominees. Or »
- NATHANIEL R
Although Spike Lee has made it clear from the start that his Kickstarter-funded “blood addiction” drama “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus” isn’t a remake of 1972’s blaxploitation “Blacula,” it turns out that the closely guarded project is in fact a remake — at times scene for scene and shot for shot — of “Ganja and Hess,” playwright and filmmaker Bill Gunn’s landmark 1973 indie that used vampirism as an ingenious metaphor for black assimilation, white cultural imperialism and the hypocrisies of organized religion. Four decades on, “Ganja” still packs a primal punch, whereas Lee’s version serves as a gory yet oddly bloodless affair that’s been made with a lot of craft and energy but ultimately little sense of purpose. Lee’s name assures a certain amount of exposure for this hybrid arthouse/grindhouse attraction, but not that much more than his recent, far superior “Red Hook Summer.”
Coming on »
- Scott Foundas
Bracey portrays an FBI agent who goes undercover with a ruthless criminal gang in order to bring down their organisation from the inside.
Lindo will be playing Johnny Utah's FBI instructor, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Gerard Butler had been attached to the project, but negotiations broke down in May.
Watch a trailer for the original Point Break below: »
With a filmography that includes roles in movies such as Cry Freedom, Malcolm X, and Philadelphia, few were surprised when Denzel Washington picked up an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role for 2001′s Training Day. Many, however, were excited to hear that the next project of Washington would see him team up once again with Training Day director Antoine Fuqua. Titled The Equalizer, Fuqua directs from a screenplay by Richard Wenk, and Washington stars alongside Chloë Grace Moretz, Melissa Leo, Bill Pullman, and Haley Bennett. A new trailer for the film, which is based on the 80s tv show, has now been released, and can be seen below.
(Source: Shadow and Act)
- Deepayan Sengupta
Iconic actress Ruby Dee died yesterday at age 91 in her home at New Rochelle, New York. For a comprehensive overview of her life and work, start with Sarah Halzack’s obituary in the Washington Post. Her achievements on stage, TV and movie screens were inseparable from her political work alongside late husband Ossie Davis. The couple were famously friends with Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr., and politics were a non-negotiable constant in their lives. “We believe in honesty,” Davis explained in 1988. “We believe in simplicity. We believe in a good breakfast when we can get it. We […] »
- Vadim Rizov
Award-winning star of stage and screen and noted civil rights activist Ruby Dee died at her home in New Rochelle, New York on Wednesday. She was 91. She died of natural causes, according to her representative Michael Livingston, as reported by CNN and other news outlets. Born in Cleveland in October 27, 1922 and raised in Harlem, Dee appeared in several Broadway plays in the '40s before her big screen breakthrough in 1950's "The Jackie Robinson Story," and she continued to appear in films, on TV and on stage in a career which lasted nearly 70 years. Often appearing alongside her husband Ossie Davis, Dee drew acclaim in films such as 1957's "Edge of the City" and 1961's "A Raisin in the Sun" (both opposite Sidney Poitier) and played a small but pivotal role in Spike Lee's quintessential 1989 film "Do the Right Thing." She also co-starred in ABC's 1994 adaptation of Stephen King's "The Stand. »
- Dave Lewis
Ruby Dee has died at the age of 91.
Dee - an actress, writer and poet and civil rights activist - passed away on Wednesday (June 11) at her home in New Rochelle, New York, with family members at her side.
Ruby Dee dies aged 91 - tributes to the actress and campaigner
Born in Ohio and raised in New York, Dee's acting career began on Broadway.
Dee won Grammy, Emmy, Obie, SAG and Drama Desk awards during a career which spanned eight decades, and was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Screen Actors Guild in the year 2000 along with her second husband Ossie Davis. »
Ruby Dee, an acclaimed actor and civil rights activist whose versatile career spanned stage, radio, television and film, has died at age 91, according to her daughter. Nora Davis Day told the Associated Press on Thursday that her mother died at home in New Rochelle, New York, on Wednesday night. Dee, who frequently acted alongside her husband of 56 years, Ossie Davis, was surrounded by family and friends, she added. Dee's long career brought her an Oscar nomination at age 83 for best supporting actress for her role in the 2007 film American Gangster. She also won an Emmy and was nominated for several others. »
- Associated Press
Ruby Dee -- one of the legendary actresses in Hollywood and on Broadway -- died Wednesday night ... TMZ has learned.Ruby was at home in New Rochelle, NY ... surrounded by family when she passed away ... according to sources connected to the family. A rep confirmed the death.Ruby was a pioneer for African-American women in Hollywood ... and is perhaps best known for her starring role in the 1960s film "A Raisin in the Sun »
- TMZ Staff
Oscar-nominated actress and longtime activist Ruby Dee has died. She was 91.
Dee was a fixture of stage and screen throughout her decades-long career, including her iconic work as Ruth Younger in the 1959 Broadway play "A Raisin in the Sun," in which she starred opposite Sidney Poitier. She later reprised her role for the 1961 film adaptation, which earned her a National Board of Review Award for Best Supporting Actress.
Her one and only Oscar nomination came late in her career, when she received a nod for Best Supporting Actress for her work in 2007's "American Gangster" at age 83. Dee was nominated for multiple Emmy awards, taking home a statuette in 1991; shared a Grammy with her late husband and fellow actor, Ossie Davis; and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Screen Actors Guild in 2000.
But her offscreen work in the civil rights movement also earned her attention and admiration. A friend »
- Katie Roberts
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