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Neil Patrick Harris to host Oscar 2015 ceremony Stage, film, and television actor Neil Patrick Harris will host the 2015 Oscars, aka the 87th Academy Awards ceremony, Oscarcast producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today, October 15, 2014. This will be Neil Patrick Harris' first time hosting the show, which in the United States will air live on ABC on Sunday, February 22. As quoted in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences press release, Zadan and Meron are "thrilled" to have Harris host their show, adding that "we have known him his entire adult life" and "to work with him on the Oscars is the perfect storm." As to be expected, Harris' statement reads that “it is truly an honor and a thrill" to be invited to host the 2015 Academy Awards ceremony Now, Neil Patrick Harris is an experienced awards-show host. His credits in the field include hosting the 61st and 65th Primetime Emmy Awards, »
- Steve Montgomery
X-Men: Days of Future Past It's interesting to me in that I consider X-Men: Days of Future Past one of the best movies of 2014 and the second best blockbuster of the summer behind Edge of Tomorrow and yet I have little to no interest in seeing it again. I've seen plenty of trailers as of late promoting today's release of the DVD and Blu-ray and each time I remember enjoying the movie, but a feeling of meh when it comes to watching it again comes over me. Nevertheless, I can still I say I felt it was a good movie... that one time I saw it.
Fargo Season One Here's a show I need to get back to and finish. Everyone I've talked to and seen comment online has enjoyed it and having already watched three of the ten episodes it only makes sense I finish it.
Venus in Fur »
- Brad Brevet
Christopher Reeve Foundation for spinal cord and stem cell research (photo: Darryl Hannah and Christopher Reeve in 'Rear Window') (See previous post: "'Superman' Christopher Reeve and his Movies: Ten-Year Death Anniversary.") In his 1998 autobiography Still Me, Christopher Reeve recalled: "At an especially bleak moment [prior to an operation that might result in his death], the door [of his hospital room] flew open and in hurried a squat fellow with a blue scrub hat and a yellow surgical gown and glasses, speaking in a Russian accent. For the first time since the accident, I laughed. My old friend had helped me know that somehow I was going to be okay." The "old friend" was the recently deceased Robin Williams, whom Reeve had befriended while both were studying at Juillard. Eventually, Reeve became a staunch advocate for spinal cord and stem cell research, sponsoring with his wife the Christopher Reeve Foundation — later renamed the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation (and formerly known »
- Andre Soares
While Steven Spielberg searched for his next movie, flirting with "American Sniper" before giving way to Clint Eastwood, famed cinematographer Janusz Kaminski was vigorously pursued by David Dobkin to shoot "The Judge." The two-time Oscar-winner ("Saving Private Ryan," "Schindler's List") was impressed with Dobkin's passion and ambition for this film about father-son estrangement. It was a far cry from Dobkin's earlier "The Change-Up" and "Wedding Crashers," and the powerful odd couple pairing of the two Roberts (Downey Jr. and Duvall) proved too irresistible for Kaminski to turn down. "I like David's movies, but he made sure this movie had autobiographical elements from his life [humbled by taking care of his estranged mother], which is always very uplifting to me," Kaminski explained by phone from New York, where he's currently shooting Spielberg's "St. James Place," the true-life '60s Cold »
- Bill Desowitz
138 is a magic number. It's the average length, in minutes, of a Best Picture winner. Here are the running times of all winnners from longest to shortest. You'll see that the majority of winners are over 2 hours long which has caused no end of padding in "serious" movies but alas, not enough padding for tender buttocks watching the interminable movies.
Here are your Best Picture winners from longest film to the shortest.
Gone With the Wind (1939) 238 minutes
Just two minutes shy of four hours, but worth every second. Lots of Gone With the Wind discussion here. Did you see its recent two day theatrical screening? Lawrence of Arabia (1962) 216 minutes Ben-Hur (1959) 212 minutes
Currently in the process of being remade because that's how Hollywood do. Although this film was itself a remake so... we'll let it pass. Still there is no way its signature scene, the chariot race, will be as thrilling with CGI. »
- NATHANIEL R
Why don't we talk about Steven Spielberg's "Munich" more? Flipping his sentimentalist reputation the bird, the docudramatized look inside Mossad's covert retaliation against the Palestine Liberation Organization is unmercifully tense and morally complicated to the point of inducing anxiety attacks. "Munich" is weaponized blockbuster filmmaking — and it sounds like Spielberg's antsy to return to the style. Perhaps praise for the 2006 Best Picture-nominee will resurface next October, when Spielberg adds another notch to his thriller belt with a Cold War drama starring "Catch Me If You Can" star Tom Hanks. Dreamworks and Walt Disney Pictures announced today that principal photography has begun on the currently untitled film, which costars Mark Rylance, Amy Ryan, and Alan Alda. Shooting around New York and Berlin, the film tells the true story of James Donovan, an attorney thrust into Cold War chaos when the CIA recruits him for a "near-impossible mission to negotiate the »
- Matt Patches
Cinematographer Janusz Kaminski works on about one film per year and has collaborated with Steven Spielberg on over a dozen films, including "Schindler's List," "War of the Worlds," "Munich," "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," and "Lincoln." He recently completed work on Robert Downey Jr's "The Judge" and is already planning something for 2015. In an interview with Variety, he revealed that his next movie will be a re-teaming with Spielberg for "Indiana Jones 5." We've heard of lots of hints that "Indiana Jones 5" is moving forward, but mostly from crew members and leaked schedules. But now that Kaminski has confirmed the project, it's only a matter of time before filming begins. »
Over at Slashfilm they noticed something of a throwaway line in a recent article at Variety discussing the new collaborative online project from cinematographers Janusz Kaminski (Lincoln), Phedon Papamichael (Nebraska) and Wally Pfister (The Dark Knight Rises) in which the trio will offer a series of online instructional videos for aspiring filmmakers at Advanced Filmmaking. The line has to do with Kaminski, which goes as follows: Since then, Kaminski has made more than a dozen films with Steven Spielberg, earning two Oscars along the way. His credits include Schindler's List, Saving Private Ryan and The Diving Bell & the Butterfly. His next project is the upcoming fifth Indiana Jones movie. Wait, whatc His next projectc Kaminski previously worked on The Judge, which hits theaters on October 10 (my review) and is now working on Spielberg's Untitled Cold War thriller (which is going by St. James Place on set, but that is not »
- Brad Brevet
★★★☆☆There's an endearing nature to Liam Neeson's action-hero exploits - what CineVue's Chris Fennell dubbed "Neesploitation" - over the years. The man who won an Oscar nomination twenty years past for Schindler's List (1993) is now a more bankable hardman than Schwarzenegger and Stallone, and yet little before 2008's Taken suggested such a second career for someone of Neeson's gruff appearance. Perhaps the tragic death of his then-wife Natasha Richardson was the catalyst. There's a gravitas and indeed a tragedy that makes him effortlessly identifiable in these madcap parts. Just look at how many 'former' roles he plays - an ex-cia man in the Taken films, a reformed convict in The Next Three Days.
- CineVue UK
Daniel Radcliffe will win an Oscar, eventually. He's driven, he's eclectic, he's riding Leonardo DiCaprio-esque blockbuster momentum that he's happy to cash in for provocative material, and, most importantly, he's good. And getting better. Holding his own against Alan Rickman, Maggie Smith and Ralph Fiennes for a decade certainly helped. Based on the talent assembled for his latest project, Radcliffe's time could be coming sooner than later. Goldcrest Films announced today that Sir Ben Kinglsey ("Schindler's List") and Brie Larson ("Short Term 12") will join Radcliffe in Killer Films' "Brooklyn Bridge," the story of engineer Washington Roebling and his calamitous road to realizing New York City's iconic structure. Radcliffe will play Roebling, who inherits the Brooklyn Bridge project from his father (Kinglsey) and finds an unlikely working partner in his wife, Emily (Larson). Radcliffe's costars provide an awards-friendly bedrock for "Brooklyn Bridge." Kinglsey is a four-time Oscar nominee, picking »
- Matt Patches
We cover a lot of ground in today's podcast and yet it still fell just short of the two hour mark and we really tried. That said, today we hold the Fall Box Office Draft, we review Frank and Starred Up and revisit The Trip to Italy as Laremy caught it this week and had a few things to say. We also play our regular assortment of games including the longest "Buy or Sell" edition ever, plus clear out a backlog of "Watch This or Watch That". Also included is a conversation as to whether you can be too apologetic in reviews, a listen to the trailer for Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas and even a voicemail sneaks in. We hope you enjoy. If you are on Twitter, we have a Twitter account dedicated to the podcast at @bnlpod. Give us a follow won'tchac I want to remind you that »
- Brad Brevet
Officials of a Swedish town have combated a neo-Nazi rally with the Schindler's List theme.
The bells of Norrköping city hall rang to the composition from Steven Spielberg's Holocaust film to oppose the far-right message (via The Guardian).
The tune was played before and after the rally by the Party of the Swedes, a group that wants to end immigration and reserve Swedish citizenship for people of "western genetic and cultural heritage".
Local government spokesman Ulf Mossberg said that the move expressed the city's belief in "the equal value of all people".
The small extremist party hopes to win seats at the Swedish elections on September 14.
1993's Schindler's List told the tale of Oskar Schindler, a German businessman who smuggled Jewish refugees to safety during World War II. It won seven Oscars out of twelve nominations. »
"Suicide is a permanent solution to temporary problems." - Robin Williams, "World's Greatest Dad" This is a very emotional "Ask Drew." This is, I would suspect, the closest you're ever going to see to me losing it on camera completely. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised when there was a Robin Williams question, since it's still so fresh and so raw for so many people, but I couldn't have known just how hard it would be to talk about him. I mean, I have stared at the blinking cursor on my blank document page for almost two days now, grappling with one question: how in the hell do you even remotely begin to sum up someone as huge as Robin Williams? We could start from the personal angle. I could tell you about the occasional e-mails I got from him when I was at Ain't It Cool, or the »
- Drew McWeeny
The beloved performer shared his soul with the internet when he answered these revealing Ask Me Anything questions in 2013.
In late 2013-- before Robin Williams' CBS sitcom The Crazy Ones premiered-- the Oscar winner took to Reddit for one of their Ask Me Anything (Ama) online events - where site users are encouraged to ask whatever they've always wanted to know about the famous participant. In this case, Williams got quite candid.
Robin Williams died on Monday, August 11, at age 63. The celebrated comedian and actor had been battling depression, according to his representative, and is suspected to have died of an apparent suicide.
One quote that stuck out in the wake of Williams' death is a question he answered from a Redditor who wanted advice, as he was going through a hard time in his life. The actor's words of support were succinct but poignant.
However, the comedian's energy and excitability poured out during the entire »
Have you ever been in a conversation where someone brings up how great some classic movie is, and all you can do is either fall silent or pretend you've seen it? I mean, heaven forbid you admit you haven't seen Star Wars or The Goonies, like some of our editors. The shame of never having seen Schindler's List or The Godfather runs deep, we know. Having said that, it's impossible to watch every movie ever! We invite you to shed your guilt and admit what "classic" movie you've never found the time or energy to watch. We'll go first, so you know this is a judgment-free zone. Front Page Image Source: Warner Bros. »
With the awards season on the horizon, now is as good a time as any to look back on the movies that won favor with the Academy. Earlier this year, a supercut emerged highlighting the Best Picture Oscar winners of the 2000s, and now video editor Miguel Branco has turned his eye to the 1990s, with a fresh video celebrating the movies that defined a decade. And indeed, the 1990s seemed to mostly be defined by the epic drama, with "Dances With Wolves," "Braveheart, "Schindler's List" and "The English Patient" taking home Oscar gold. But the Academy took chances too, honoring Jonathan Demme's horror "Silence Of The Lambs," Clint Eastwood's western "Unforgiven" and Sam Mendes' "American Beauty" as well. Take a look a the full video below, and let us know if these winners still stand the test of time, or if you would have chosen differently. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
On a December morning, in 2012, Steve James walked into a patient's room at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and immediately felt remorse. With his lower jaw removed from several surgeries related to a 11-year battle with cancer of the thyroid and salivary glands, Roger Ebert, the iconic film critic, was all strung up, looking rather helpless, sound asleep. "I remember looking [at him] and going, Aw shit, I dunno," the filmmaker recalls of the emotional first day of shooting Life Itself, his documentary on Ebert. "I don't know how people are going to feel about this. »
Climbing the Hollywood ladder isn't easy. One tier of success does not guarantee another. That often means actors can reach one level of notoriety, but never reach breakout status. Often it takes years to become a real movie star. Anyone remember how long it took Liam Neeson? You could argue that Neeson's first real movie role was in Roland Joffee's "The Mission" way back in 1986 (released before many of you were even born). His major breakout should have been Steven Spielberg's "Schindler's List" where he earned a coveted best actor nomination. Instead, Neeson followed it up with a string of bombs before George Lucas cast him as Qui-Gon Jinn in "Star Wars: Episode I: The Phantom Menace." That was the second spark. The third spark? Playing Ra's al Ghul in "Batman Begins." And then, of all things, "Taken." It's hard to believe, but Neeson didn't become a household name until that blockbuster 2008 thriller. »
- Gregory Ellwood
Set in the fictional Republic of Zubrowka, Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel is a story within a story within a story within a story. The first takes place in present day and bookends the feature, two small segments where a young girl, carrying a book, is visiting the grave of Zubrowka's "national treasure." The "treasure" is a novelist whose name is never revealed and the book is The Grand Budapest Hotel.
It is here we flash back to 1985 to meet the author (played by Tom Wilkinson) who briefly explains how the book came to be. Flashback two takes us back to 1968, where the younger novelist (Jude Law) is visiting the famous hotel and comes across Mr. Moustafa (F. Murray Abraham) who just so happens to have the story that will become the author's book.
Over dinner, Mr. Moustafa recounts the time he was a lobby boy at the »
Ever since he directed Jurassic Park and Schindler's List back to back, Steven Spielberg has had periods where he's directed films in clumps. Most notably, he did The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Amistad and Saving Private Ryan pretty much back to back, pocketing an Oscar for the last of those three.
A few years later, he then went from A.I. to Minority Report to Catch Me If You Can, and in 2005 from War Of The Worlds to Munich. More recently, he shot War Horse and Lincoln without too much of a gap between them.
Now? He's set up a new pair of projects, and he's diving straight in, one after the other. The first is his thus-far untitled Cold War thriller, which is set to reunite him with Tom Hanks. The Coen brothers have penned the screenplay. »
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