13 items from 2017
Kevin O’Connell (Courtesy: Getty Images)
By: Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter
“I’ve never been more appreciative, humbled and just overall excited about the fact that I’ve been nominated,” says Hacksaw Ridge sound mixer Kevin O’Connell of his 21st Oscar nomination — which he shares with Peter Grace, Robert Mackenzie and Andy Wright — as we sit down at The Hollywood Reporter to record an episode of THR‘s ‘Awards Chatter’ podcast. “I don’t want to say I took it for granted in the past, but I certainly don’t take it for granted anymore.”
O’Connell, 59, has worked in Hollywood for nearly 40 years, and is one of the most respected practitioners of his craft. But he is best known for a dubious distinction: in Oscar history, no person has accumulated more nominations without ever winning. His noms span 33 years, from 1983’s Terms of Endearment through Mel Gibson‘s 2016 war film, »
- Carson Blackwelder
For more than a decade, sound mixers Kevin O’Connell and Greg P. Russell worked hand-in-hand on some of the industry’s biggest box office hits, movies like “The Rock,” “Armageddon,” “Spider-Man,” and “Transformers.” It was a relationship born out of an early coupling on Ridley Scott’s “Black Rain” that later took flight in the mid-1990s when the two set up shop together at the Cary Grant mixing stage on the Sony lot in Culver City. In their time together, they landed Academy recognition 12 times, quickly becoming the Susan Luccis of the Oscars — consistently nominated, but never awarded.
Ten years ago, after the first “Transformers” film, O’Connell and Russell went their separate ways. This year, they’re back at the big dance together, though for different projects: O’Connell picked up his 21st nomination to date for Mel Gibson’s “Hacksaw Ridge,” while Russell is back in »
- Kristopher Tapley
A World War I love story with Josh Hartnett? No, this isn’t a prequel to “Pearl Harbor” (thank the gods), it’s the trailer to the upcoming film, “The Ottoman Lieutenant.” The film, starring Hera Hilmar tells the story of a strong-willed American woman who decides to leave the United States after meeting Jude (Hartnett), an American doctor who runs a hospital within the Ottoman Empire as the first World War looms.
Read More: 10 Underrated Love Stories to Watch on Valentines Day
As depicted in the dramatic trailer (filled with fezzes!), it is there where she falls for an Ottoman soldier played by “Game of Thrones” star Michiel Huisman (Daario, your love life’s a mess), inevitably causing friction between her and her Armenian allies. If the trailer’s tagline –“When the world is at war the worst place to be is in love”– is any indication, this love »
- Juan Diaz
From students at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School in Massachusetts, to Hollywood stars with nine Oscar nominations among them, Casey Affleck, his brother Ben Affleck and Matt Damon have come far. And stayed close through it all.
In 1997, Damon and the elder Affleck’s film Good Will Hunting — which also starred Casey — propelled them to fame and their first walk on the Academy Awards stage. Now, 20 years later, Oscar continues to smile on them: Damon is a nominated producer on Best Picture contender Manchester By the Sea, which features an Oscar-nominated performance from Best Actor hopeful Casey Affleck. In 2013, Ben »
- Lindsay Kimble
Michael Shannon is becoming more and more of a household name with each passing year. The 42-year-old actor has been around film and television since 1992 but his stock has quickly risen in the last 5 years as he’s been getting bigger roles in bigger movies. I personally think that Shannon’s trajectory rose after he portrayed General Zod in Man of Steel. But Michael Shannon has always been awesome. He has a creepy, serious look about him that lends itself to psychotic characters that both scare and bewilder us. But remember, Shannon wasn’t always a big star. Take 2001 for
- Nat Berman
By: Carson Blackwelder
The Academy Awards are meant to celebrate the best that Hollywood has to offer us each year — but sometimes a few less-than-stellar films can slip through the cracks. It doesn’t happen that often in the major categories and, when it does, these duds usually pop up in the categories that fly under the radar. Let’s take a look at the films that meet the criteria of having been panned by critics and somehow landing an Oscar nomination this year and others in the 21st century.
Just to be transparent about the qualifications a film would need to meet to be included in this story, we’re looking at those that were at least nominated for an Oscar — if they won, even better — and that registered as “rotten” on RottenTomatoes.com. “Rotten” films would be »
- Carson Blackwelder
Geer, also a combat cameraman during World War II, spent decades working with iconic Loony Tunes characters and was responsible for Bugs Bunny’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Born in 1916 in Oronogo, Mississippi, Harold Eugene Geer spent the majority of his career among beloved cartoon characters. But before that, Geer married his wife Nancy Walker and joined the Army Air Corps just two weeks after the bombing at Pearl Harbor. He flew with the Flying Tigers over China during 86 missions and even doubled as a B-24 and B-25 gunner while also shooting news footage.
After the war, the duo moved to Hollywood where Geer served as a film editor, writer, director, and producer for Walt Disney, Warner Bros., and independent production companies on 25 feature films, more than 500 television shows, 400 commercials, and 100 short-subject films. »
- Dani Levy
A frequent topic within Lrm lately, which you've likely heard spill over onto the Los Fanboys Podcast (assuming you listen to it...which you should!!!!), is Ben Affleck's current career trajectory. We're all fans of his and I- in particular- have been very happy to see him return to the top of the mountain in the last seven years. I've been rooting for the guy since 1997 when Good Will Hunting came out and made him and Matt Damon household names. So no one was happier when he bounced back from being the butt of many a joke to suddenly being an artist that demands respect.
Remember, he started hot in 1997 and then, while Damon went for smaller, more intimate, character-driven movies, Affleck went big. He leapt from the indie darlings that brought him to prominence towards big-budget popcorn flicks like Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, Paycheck, and Daredevil. And when he »
- Mario-Francisco Robles
Welcome back to the Weekend Warrior, your weekly look at the new movies hitting theaters this weekend, as well as other cool events and things to check out.
This Past Weekend:
As per my Thursday update, M. Night Shyamalan’s thriller Split ended up winning the weekend but with way more than anyone, including myself, predicted, with more than $40 million for its opening weekend. That’s pretty impressive, and his first movie to open at that level since 2010’s The Last Airbender. Meanwhile, Vin Diesel’s sequel xXx: The Return of Xander Cage ended up making around where I predicted, taking second place with $20.1 million, not a great sign for the continuation of that franchise. Michael Keaton’s The Founder ended up right around where I predicted with $3.4 million, ending up just outside the Top 10. Hidden Figures, La La Land and Sing continued to do well with minimal drop-offs.
- Edward Douglas
Kate Beckinsale has clearly been working on her fitness!
The 43-year-old actress shared an amazing selfie on Wednesday of her ridiculously toned body, taken during her recent photo shoot for Shape magazine's February cover. Beckinsale sports a black crop top and a pair of white bikini bottoms, flaunting her killer physique.
"Laughing in bathrooms with friends," she Instagrammed.
In the accompanying interview, the Underworld star shared her secrets to her slim figure, including avoiding alcohol. "I don't drink alcohol," she revealed. "I feel [its effects] very quickly, so I've never actually had an entire glass of anything alcoholic."
She also, of course, gets plenty of exercise. Beckinsale works out with celeb trainer Gunnar Peterson five or six times a week.
"I start out absolutely dreading it, do an incredibly punishing workout, b*tch about it the whole time and end up feeling 100 percent better when I »
From Greek myths to modern comic book movies, heroes are often required to cross a threshold where the laws of the ordinary world are suspended. In Mel Gibson’s war film Hacksaw Ridge, it’s the landmark named in the title: a sheer cliff face on the island of Okinawa where, in the midst of WWII, Japanese forces are tenaciously dug in. When fresh-faced soldier Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) crosses the threshold into that territory, Gibson depicts the moment as a step into a purgatorial dimension of death and cruelty. It's nothing short of terrifying.
Doss was a real-life Us soldier, a devout Christian who flatly refused to pick up a gun even in bootcamp, »
The Founder has a mesmerizing sequence wherein a pair of restauranteurs train their staff in proper kitchen procedure by having them run through it repeatedly on a tennis court covered in chalk outlines. Over a montage, the troop of clean-cut lads master the intricate choreography of the “Speedee Service System,” going from bumping into one another to pirouetting along the lines with industrial grace. It’s like Martha Graham, Dogville, and Ronald McDonald had a beautiful cinematic child. And then nothing interesting happens in the movie again.
In an earlier scene, traveling salesman Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton) visits the first McDonald’s location in Bakersfield, curious as to what kind of small restaurant needs so many milkshake machines. (This is the 1950s, at a point when “McDonald” is just another Gaelic name.) Kroc is enchanted by the Speedee Service System, which treats food preparation as an assembly line that delivers orders in record time. »
- Daniel Schindel
Welcome back to the first Weekend Warrior of 2017, your weekly look at the new movies hitting theaters this weekend, as well as other cool events and things to check out (when applicable).
We’ll bypass the past couple holiday weekends cause that was so 2016, and we’ll instead get right into the new movies opening on Friday including two that opened in select cities and are expanding nationwide.
Genre: Action, Horror, Thriller
Plot: The vampire death dealer Selene (Kate Beckinsale) finds herself facing both Lycans and vampires, both of them trying to use the blood of her daughter to create new hybrids, so she and David (Theo James »
- Edward Douglas
13 items from 2017
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