20 items from 2015
The epic still photographs of Brazilian artist and environmentalist Sebastião Salgado take pride of place in a spectacular new documentary about his life and work. Directed by Wim Wenders (Buena Vista Social Club, Pina) in association with Salgado’s son, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, The Salt Of The Earth was awarded Un Certain Regard Special Jury Award at the Cannes Film Festival and was Oscar nominated. The relationship between Salgado fils and Wenders was strained to breaking point at times...
Richard Mowe: Have you been bowled over by the way the film has been received so enthusiastically?
Juliano Ribeiro Salgado: Its success is a huge surprise – from that first moment in Cannes when we had such an amazing reception, to »
- Richard Mowe
It’s been a surprisingly interesting month of moving and shaking in terms of doc development. Just a month after making his first public funding pitch at Toronto’s Hot Docs Forum, legendary doc filmmaker Frederick Wiseman took to Kickstarter to help cover the remaining expenses for his 40th feature film In Jackson Heights (see the film’s first trailer below). Unrelentingly rigorous in his determination to capture the American institutional landscape on film, his latest continues down this thematic rabbit hole, taking on the immensely diverse New York City neighborhood of Jackson Heights as his latest subject. According to the Kickstarter page, Wiseman is currently editing the 120 hours of rushes he shot with hopes of having the film ready for a fall festival premiere (my guess would be Tiff, where both National Gallery and At Berkeley made their North American debut), though he’s currently quite a ways away from his $75,000 goal. »
- Jordan M. Smith
Exclusive: Passionate tango tale to world premiere at the Cannes Marche today (May 16).
Octogenarian Rego and Copes met when they were 14 and 17-years-old.
In Our Last Tango, they recount their passionate, chaotic relationship to a group of young tango dancers and choreographers from Buenos Aires, who transform the most beautiful, moving and dramatic moments of Juan and Maria’s lives into incredible tango-choreographies. »
Exclusive: Buena Vista Social Club producer Rosa Bosch is in Cannes with a slate of four new feature documentaries, all of which are to be made in Cuba as the country begins to open itself up to international production.
The first one to shoot will be Havana Autos And Architecture, based on the book by celebrated British architect Norman Foster and journalist Mauricio Vicent.
The film is being made through Bosch’s company Cuban Star, and Ivorypress, the company run by Elena Ochoa Foster.
“The project comes out of a visit by Norman Foster to Havana and his falling love with the whole place and making a very unique link between the architecture and the car,” said Bosch.
The film will be based around six stories of old-timers who keep their cars “going on forever and forever”. Through those stories, the film aims to paint a portrait of the country’s 50 years old political isolation and to »
- email@example.com (Geoffrey Macnab)
One-year-old Broad Green Pictures has appointed veteran marketing-distribution executive Dylan Wiley as president of specialty releasing.
Broad Green, founded by brothers Gabriel and Daniel Hammond, has focused on adult-oriented dramas with an upcoming slate including “99 Homes,” starring Andrew Garfield; “A Walk in the Woods,” starring Robert Redford; Sarah Silverman’s “I Smile Back”; and three Terrence Malick films — “Knight of Cups,” “Voyage of Time” and an untitled project starring Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara and Michael Fassbender.
Wiley, a former exec at Entertainment One and New Line, has been working at Broad Green since November and will manage all aspects of the release of eight to 12 specialty titles annually — including platform and multi-window patterns. The specialty film slate will be primarily focused on acquisitions and co-productions, although Broad Green noted that it’s also in development on its own projects and will begin production on those in the coming months.
- Dave McNary
Buena Vista Social Club, the Oscar-nominated 1999 documentary exploring American guitarist Ry Cooder's efforts to re-assemble a group of renowned Cuban musicians, is getting a sequel. Buena Vista Social Club - Adios, directed by Lucy Walker (Waste Land), will begin filming in July, focusing on the band's five original members on tour. The film will explore their personal and professional lives over the past 16 years, building to a run of homecoming concerts in Havana, Variety reports.
"This Is Genius!" tweeted Whit Stillman the other day. He's referring to Margaret C. Sullivan's analysis of the plot of Jane Austen's short novel, Lady Susan, which Stillman has adapted as Love and Friendship. Meantime, Cary Fukunaga (True Detective) is busy developing A24's first homegrown project, adapting Caleb Carr's The Alienist and Stephen King's It and preparing Beasts of No Nation with Idris Elba. More projects in the works include an Absolutely Fabulous movie, James Wan's Robotech, Lucy Walker's sequel to Wim Wenders's Buena Vista Social Club, Paul Giamatti and Toby Jones in Morgan, a sci-fi thriller being directed by Ridley Scott's son, Luke Scott, adaptations of Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat's Cradle and Marion Zimmer Bradley's sci-fi series Darkover—and more. » - David Hudson »
Broad Green Pictures is launching production on "Buena Vista Social Club - Adios," a sequel sixteen years after Wim Wenders' original Oscar-nominated film that put Cuban music culture on the global stage, following Ry Cooder as he brought prominent Cuban musicians out of retirement. Two-time Academy Award nominee Lucy Walker will direct, with Christine Cowin and Zak Kilberg producing. With the band on their final and hugely ambitious world tour, the five original band members take us on a journey revealing their personal and professional highs and lows since 1999, while remembering the infamous band members they've lost. The tour will culminate in a series of homecoming concerts in Havana. Principal photography is slated to begin in July 2015 with theatrical release targeted in 2016. Broad Green’s Victor Moyers and Asher Goldstein will oversee production for the studio. Walker's documentary credits including Oscar nominees "The Tsunami and the »
- Ryan Lattanzio
Mister Smith Entertainment to begin international sales at Cannes Marche.
Buena Vista Social Club - Adios will be directed by Oscar-nominated film-maker Lucy Walker (Waste Land) and will catch up with the band on their final world tour, culminating in a series of concerts in Havana. Producers are Christine Cowin and Zak Kilberg.
Principal photography is slated to begin this July with theatrical release targeted in 2016.
Broad Green Pictures is financing the project and will lead production, with Victor Moyers and Asher Goldstein will oversee production for the studio, alongside Blink TV and Convergent Media (formerly Social Construct Media).
Broad Green has worldwide rights to the film and will distribute in the Us, while London-based Mister Smith Entertainment will handle international sales, which will begin »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Board Green in a financing the project with Lucy Walker (“Waste Land”) directing and Christine Cowin and Zak Kilberg producing. Broad Green has worldwide rights and will distribute in the United States, with Mister Smith Entertainment handling international sales, starting at the Cannes Film Festival.
“Buena Vista Social Club — Adios” is the first project to emerge from the partnership between Broad Green and Mister Smith since the two companies announced Broad Green had bought a 45% stake in Mister Smith.
Wenders’ film, which was nominated for a best documentary Oscar, centered on efforts by Ry Cooder to bring together prominent Cuban musicians to record an album and to perform in Amsterdam and New York City’s Carnegie Hall. The film included concert footage and interviews with the main performers. It grossed $23 million worldwide. »
- Dave McNary
Broad Green Pictures has set up Buena Vista Social Club – Adios, a sequel to Wim Wenders’ seminal 1999 documentary that pulled back the curtain on Cuba’s vibrant music culture, spawning a Grammy-winning album produced by Ry Cooder and a world tour. Lucy Walker (Waste Land) is directing the follow-up docu, which will track the remaining band members on their final concert tour that ends with homecoming shows in Havana. (The tour hits the U.S. for a few dates beginning in… »
There’s a perceptible reverence for Sebastião Salgado and his work as a social issues photographer in the Oscar-nominated documentary The Salt of the Earth, out this Friday in New York and Los Angeles. Considering the filmmakers’ relationship with their subject, it isn’t hard to figure out why. Three time Oscar nominee and The Salt of the Earth co-director, Wim Wenders (Buena Vista Social Club, Pina) bought one of Sebastião’s photos when he first discovered him, and immediately became enchanted with both the photography and the man. Wenders’ co-director is Juliano Salgado, Sebastião’s son who first began filming his father when Sebastião asked Juliano to accompany him on a trip to photograph the reclusive Amazonian Zo’é tribe.
Wenders and the younger Salgado spent several years assembling a documentary that combines intimate behind-the-scenes moments alongside Sebastião as he makes progress on his “Genesis” collection with reflective examinations »
- Zachary Shevich
In the late 1970s and '80s, if you were into serious cinema, you had to be into Wim Wenders. The German director of Paris, Texas, Alice in the Cities, and Wings of Desire was the international poster-child for artful ennui and existential despair. But his films were also remarkable for the way they mixed a very continental brooding with a love of pop culture, usually American. That’s what made his films so brilliant, in a way — they were serious, but accessible. As evidenced by his triumphant recent MoMA retrospective, which screened brand-new restorations of his films, Wenders has proven to be a remarkably resilient and adaptable filmmaker over the years. He still makes narrative films, but he is now known as much for documentaries like The Buena Vista Social Club and Pina as he is for his earlier classics. This week sees the release of the Oscar-nominated Salt of the Earth, »
- Bilge Ebiri
German filmmaker Wim Wenders has really done it all. From narrative to documentaries, including 3D arthouse dramas (the upcoming “Every Thing Will Be Fine”), 3D documentaries (“Pina”), music videos (U2, Talking Heads), live concert films, and almost every kind of movie imaginable in between — Wenders’ work has been restlessly eclectic. The filmmaker has been an early adopter of new technology throughout his career, shooting on video in the mid ‘90s (“Until the End of the World”), and his embrace of 3D technology began even earlier than is suggested on paper (he began shooting “Pina” even before James Cameron’s “Avatar” was released in theaters). He’s also received a ton of accolades over the years, winning the Palme d’Or in 1984 at Cannes (“Paris, Texas”), Best Director at Cannes in 1987 (“Wings Of Desire”) and he’s been nominated for three Academy Awards for the documentaries “Buena Vista Social Club,” the »
- Rodrigo Perez
There are a few titans of narrative cinema - Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee come first to mind - who make documentaries that rival their feature film work. Another example is Werner Herzog, a filmmaker whose non-fiction films are still celebrated, but it's his docs that (deservedly, in my opinion) get the lion's share of praise. From the same school of filmmakers as the iconoclastic Herzog, Wim Wenders shares his compatriot's ability to seamlessly switch between doc and feature. If the only non-fiction film Wenders ever shot was Buena Vista Social Club, than he'd be rightly lauded as one of the best non-fiction directors of the last half century. In The Salt of the Earth, Wenders, along with his co-director (and son of the subject)...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
Over the course of four decades, German filmmaker Wim Wenders has directed more than 30 feature-length films of all different types. There’s the Palme d'Or-winning “Paris, Texas,” the Criterion-minted “Wings of Desire,” and he's a three-time Oscar nominee for the documentaries “Buena Vista Social Club,” the visually striking 3D “Pina,” and his upcoming film, “The Salt of the Earth,” about Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado, which opens this weekend (our review from Telluride). Overshadowed to some degree by Werner Herzog, as they came of cinematic age during the 1970s German New Wave movement, Wenders has been getting his due recently thanks to a gigantic retrospective of his work at Moma that just finished. Underappreciated gems getting a second look there were "The American Friend" starring Dennis Hopper, the director's long form cut of "Until The End Of The World," and the documentary about dying filmmaker Nicholas Ray, “Lightning »
- Rodrigo Perez
From photography to warfare, conservation to whistleblowing, this year’s five Oscar nominated documentaries are united by overlapping themes and topics of interest, but remain uniformly distinct in their approach.
Leading the quintet is Laura Poitras’ “Citizenfour,” the highest-grossing and highest-profile nominee. The verite-style portrait of Nsa whistleblower Edward Snowden gives audiences a voyeuristic peek inside Snowden’s week in Hong Kong when the information he leaked started going public, and shows the human side of a man who the media nearly turned into a myth.
The pic has cleaned up in Oscar precursors, garnering best doc wins from the Gotham and Intl. Documentary Assn. awards, the four top critics groups (New York, Los Angeles, London and National Society) and nominations from BAFTA and the Spirits. It also marks Poitras’ second Oscar nom. She was in contention in 2007 for “My Country, My Country” but lost to heavyweight “An Inconvenient Truth. »
- Geoff Berkshire
By Anjelica Oswald
German director Wim Wenders received his third Oscar nomination Thursday morning for The Salt of the Earth, a documentary about the life and career of Brazilian photographer Sebastiao Salgado, which he co-directed with Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, Sebastiao’s son. Wenders had become a fan of Sebastiao’s work after discovering some images in a gallery, which led him to pursue the documentary. It won the Un Certain Regard Special Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, where it premiered.
Wenders’ first Oscar nomination was for Buena Vista Social Club (1999), a documentary about Cuban musicians gathered together by American music producer and guitarist Ry Cooder after he traveled to Havana. The musicians recorded an album under the name of the Buena Vista Social Club and toured in Amsterdam and New York City. The film won best documentary from the National Board of Review and also landed three BAFTA nominations. »
- Anjelica Oswald
By Anjelica Oswald
Keep on Keepin’ On, director Alan Hicks’ debut film, follows four years of the friendship and mentorship between jazz legend and trumpeter Clark Terry, who played with Count Basie and Duke Ellington and taught a young Quincy Jones how to play, and Justin Kauflin, a talented 23-year-old blind pianist. The two musicians support each other as Terry begins to lose his eyesight due to health issues and as Kauflin deals with stage fright as a semi-finalist in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition. The film is one of 15 films on the Oscar documentary shortlist, five of which will be nominated on Jan. 15.
The Academy is particularly fond of music-related documentaries, nominating 17 since 1942, with eight winning. Keep on Keepin’ On could join the following Oscar-nominated films:
Director Murray Lerner’s black-and-white documentary offers a glimpse into three years (1963-1966) of the Newport Folk Festival, which »
- Anjelica Oswald
My knowledge of Cuban cinema is limited to a handful of films — one or two native productions and works by foreigners like Wim Wenders’ Buena Vista Social Club and Michael Rubbo’s Waiting for Fidel. So my interest was aroused when President Obama announced his administration’s change in policy regarding Cuba. The political ramifications of the President’s policies are, of course, extremely personal for Cuban-Americans, and discussions about the politics of the announcement and human-rights issues in Cuba are occurring across the nation(s). While not disregarding these discussions, I wanted to take a moment to look at the possibilities normalized relations might create […] »
- Randy Astle
20 items from 2015
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