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Harry Gittes, Producer and Longtime Friend of Jack Nicholson, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, Producer and Longtime Friend of Jack Nicholson, Dies at 81
Harry Gittes, who produced multiple movies starring Jack Nicholson, died of natural causes on Sept. 2. He was 81.

Gittes attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst before starting his career as an advertising copywriter and photographer in New York. In the ’60s, he began shooting album covers for the likes of Woody Allen and Cass Elliot at the Bitter End, New York’s oldest rock club. Gittes also photographed then-up-and-comers including Nicholson, Elliott Gould, and Liza Minnelli.

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He became friends with producer Roy Silver, who eventually sparked Gittes’ future as a film producer. Together, they produced the 1969 pilot of the animated special “Hey, Hey, Hey, It’s Fat Albert.”

Gittes also cultivated a friendship with Nicholson, and produced several projects with the actor-director, including “Goin’ South,” “Drive, He Said,” and “About Schmidt.” Nicholson’s character in 1974 classic “Chinatown,” private investigator J.J. Gittes, was named after the producer.

Gittes
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Get in the zone: the many adaptations of Roadside Picnic

Padraig Cotter Oct 11, 2017

The sci-fi novel Roadside Picnic has inspired works in film, TV, books and even videogames...

Stalker was the final film Andrei Tarkovsky made in the Soviet Union, and is a hypnotic, beguiling experience that refuses to surrender to any one interpretation. That hasn’t stopped critics and fans attempting to apply their own readings of course; is it a religious allegory, a commentary on life in the Soviet Union, an essay on filmmaking or is it about three miserable Russian blokes having a bit of an aimless wander? It could be all of the above, or none - it’s up to each viewer to decide for themselves.

The film is a loose adaptation of Russian sci-fi novel Roadside Picnic by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky, and while on the surface they share similar characters and themes, they play out very differently. Even more interesting is how Roadside Picnic
See full article at Den of Geek »

Downsizing Trailer Shrinks Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig

  • MovieWeb
Downsizing Trailer Shrinks Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig
Paramount Pictures has released the first trailer and photo for Downsizing, the latest from fimmaker Alexander Payne, which tackles the global issue of over-population in a very peculiar way. The title does not refer to downsizing on a corporate level, as it pertains to company-wide layoffs, but rather the downsizing, or miniaturization of every day people. While this gimmick has certainly been tackled before, Downsizing takes a global approach to a rather silly trope that has been used countless times in movies such as Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, and even Marvel's Ant-Man.

Downsizing imagines what might happen if, as a solution to over-population, Norwegian scientists discover how to shrink humans to five inches tall and propose a 200-year global transition from big to small. People soon realize how much further money goes in a miniaturized world, and with the promise of a better life, everyman Paul Safranek (Matt Damon
See full article at MovieWeb »

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, who produced the Jack Nicholson films Drive, He Said; Goin' South and About Schmidt and was the namesake for the actor's gumshoe character in Chinatown, has died. He was 81.

Gittes died Saturday of natural causes in Los Angeles, publicist Seth Horowitz reported.

Gittes also produced Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976), starring James Caan, Elliott Gould, Michael Caine and Diane Keaton; Richard Benjamin's Little Nikita (1988), starring Sidney Poitier and River Phoenix; Breaking In (1989), written by John Sayles and starring Burt Reynolds; and The Girl Next Door (2004), starring Emile Hirsch.

Born on May 6, 1936, in...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - TV News »

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81
Harry Gittes, who produced the Jack Nicholson films Drive, He Said; Goin' South and About Schmidt and was the namesake for the actor's gumshoe character in Chinatown, has died. He was 81.

Gittes died Saturday of natural causes in Los Angeles, publicist Seth Horowitz reported.

Gittes also produced Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976), starring James Caan, Elliott Gould, Michael Caine and Diane Keaton; Richard Benjamin's Little Nikita (1988), starring Sidney Poitier and River Phoenix; Breaking In (1989), written by John Sayles and starring Burt Reynolds; and The Girl Next Door (2004), starring Emile Hirsch.

Born on May 6, 1936, in...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

‘Downsizing’ Review: Alexander Payne Goes Big by Going Small and Slightly Overreaches

The formidable critic Anthony Lane once collectivized the archetypal Alexander Payne lead — that unmistakably downbeat beast — as the “beached male.” Matt Damon is certainly no such thing. Nor is his Paul Safranek, the character he plays in Payne’s new film, Downsizing, a remarkably uncharacteristic environmentally conscious sci-fi comedy that poses this question: in a world stretched to breaking point by overpopulation, food and water shortages, overflowing landfills, and so on: would our problems not be solved if we were all just a little smaller?

It’s a fine conceit from Payne and his long-time writing partner Jim Taylor, but one that poses far, far more questions than it hopes to answer. Viewers should perhaps not be too hard on themselves if their minds wander away from the theater (and perhaps Payne’s narrative) at times to consider all the possibilities of a place such as Leisureland, the miniature world
See full article at The Film Stage »

'Downsizing' Has Big Buzz Out of the Venice Film Festival

  • Movies.com
Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor have been making movies of substance for decades, since 1996's Citizen Ruth. Their latest, Downsizing, about a man (Matt Damon) who decides to shrink himself to make his life easier, promises to be another entertaining and enlightening feature with socially minded subject matter. And yet again, the duo is garnering tremendous acclaim for their work.  While Payne and Taylor have seen negative reviews for writing ventures such as Jurassic Park III and I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, their own movies, cowritten by both and directed by Payne (Citizen RuthElection, About Schmidt, Sideways), have an average Rotten Tomatoes score of 88.3%. If we include movies where Taylor is a producer but not writer (add...

Read More
See full article at Movies.com »

Downsizing Movie Review (Venice Film Festival 2017)

  • ShockYa
Downsizing Movie Review (Venice Film Festival 2017)
Title: Downsizing Director: Alexander Payne Cast: Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Hong Chau, Alec Baldwin, Neil Patrick Harris, Maribeth Monroe and Jason Sudeikis. Thomas Robert Malthus had already predicted the perils of over population, back in the eighteenth century. The witty director of ‘About Schmidt,’ ‘Sideways,’ ‘The Descendants,’ ‘Nebraska,’ Alexander Payne, seems to provide […]

The post Downsizing Movie Review (Venice Film Festival 2017) appeared first on Shockya.com.
See full article at ShockYa »

Alexander Payne On ‘Downsizing’, Opening Venice & Snarky Tailors

  • Deadline
Alexander Payne On ‘Downsizing’, Opening Venice & Snarky Tailors
Exclusive: Tomorrow, Alexander Payne's Downsizing will open the 74th Venice Film Festival. The Matt Damon-starrer marks a number of firsts for Payne, the Oscar-winning filmmaker behind such great pics as Election, Citizen Ruth, About Schmidt, Sideways, The Descendants and Nebraska. Not only has he never had a movie at Venice, he's never even been to the Lido event. As for any pressure of opening the fest, which has become a key launch pad for awards-season contenders…
See full article at Deadline »

First look image from Alexander Payne’s new film Downsizing

Entertainment Weekly has debuted the first image from director Alexander Payne’s upcoming sci-fi comedy drama Downsizing featuring Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig; take a look below…

Downsizing imagines what might happen if overpopulation and climate change [prompt] Norwegian scientists to discover how to shrink people down to five inches tall and propose, very earnestly, the population’s two-to-three-hundred-year transition from big to small,” states Payne, whose credits include Election, About Schmidt, Sideways, The Descendants and Nebraska.

Downsizing is set for release on December 22nd and features a cast that includes Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Laura Dern, Alec Baldwin, Neil Patrick Harris, Maribeth Monroe and Jason Sudeikis.
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Golden Globes’ Biggest Red Carpet Rebels

Golden Globes’ Biggest Red Carpet Rebels
The Academy Awards has a long reputation of being the straight-a cheerleader big sister to the Golden Globes’ more rebellious, drama club younger sibling, at least as far as its fashions are concerned. Save for some break-the-mold looks like Bjork’s infamous swan dress (and, lest we forget, its accompanying egg clutch) and Cher’s Bob Mackie headdress, the Oscars are remembered for polished jewels while the Globes are there for stars to make statements.

The go-to example for this argument is still, now over a decade later, “The Practice” star Lara Flynn Boyle’s skimpy petal pink prima ballerina faux paus from the 2003 ceremony. The get-up served its purpose; that is, it changed her narrative for the evening from solely being about her recent breakup with Jack Nicholson, who would win lead actor in a motion picture drama for “About Schmidt” (he told the Associated Press that Boyle’s Swarovski-dazzled tulle skirt and matching Chanel shoes
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ to Open Venice Film Festival (Exclusive)

Alexander Payne’s ‘Downsizing’ to Open Venice Film Festival (Exclusive)
Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” will open this year’s Venice International Film Festival, Variety has learned. That coveted berth, on Aug. 30 against the unmistakable backdrop of Italy’s historic canals, puts the Paramount release at the top of this year’s buzziest offerings in the 2017 Oscars race.

The dark comedy centers on a man (played by Matt Damon) who wonders what his life would be like if he shrank himself. Laura Dern, Kirsten Wiig, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis round out the cast.

Venice has become a strong launching pad for awards season contenders. Last year, Damien Chazelle’s “La La Land” premiered there on its way to Telluride, Toronto and 14 Oscar nominations. And in the last five years, two other Academy Awards Best Picture favorites –“Birdman,” in 2014, and “Gravity,” in 2013 — bowed in Venice.

Payne is no stranger to the awards season circuit, as he’s made comedy-dramas “Nebraska,” “About Schmidt” and “Sideways,” all
See full article at Variety - Film News »

The Opening Night Selection for the 2017 New York Film Festival is Richard Linklater’s “Last Flag Flying”

Believe it or not, we’re already at the point in the year where fall film festival announcements are being made. Yesterday afternoon, the first shot across the bow was fired when the New York Film Festival announced Richard Linklater’s Last Flag Flying as it’s Opening Night Selection. Getting a bit of a head start on things, Nyff is planting a flag, no pun intended, on this flick as an awards vehicle. Linklater nearly took home an Oscar for Boyhood, so he’s certainly due. Could this do it for him? Time will tell, but getting this prestigious slot at Nyff is a strong first step. There’s plenty of reason to be excited for this one. This film is a road trip tale, working as a sort of pseudo sequel to the classic The Last Detail. In the press release, Film Society described it thusly: “In Richard Linklater’s lyrical road movie,
See full article at Hollywoodnews.com »

Alexander Payne in La Greek Film Festival honour

  • ScreenDaily
Alexander Payne in La Greek Film Festival honour
Auteur’s Downsizing to open in December through Paramount.

Alexander Payne will receive the 2017 Orpheus Award at the 11th Annual Los Angeles Greek Film Festival in June.

The award will be presented as part of the Orpheus Awards ceremony following the closing night film on June 11 in Hollywood.

Alexander Payne was selected by the committee to receive this year’s honor because of his worldwide contributions to movies and his dedication to the preservation of its history,” festival director Aris Katopodis said.

“We are delighted to be among those who recognize his brilliance as a filmmaker and his dedication not only to the craft but the people that work with him. His ability to entertain and intrigue audiences worldwide is surpassed by none.”

Payne, the grandson of Greek immigrants and a native of Omaha, Nebraska, launched into directing with Citizen Ruth in 1996, and followed that up with Reese Witherspoon break-out Election.

His other films
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Cannes Wish List: 50 Films That Have a Serious Shot at the 2017 Festival Lineup

  • Indiewire
Cannes Wish List: 50 Films That Have a Serious Shot at the 2017 Festival Lineup
In order to make accurate predictions about the potential Cannes Film Festival lineup, it’s first important to explore which films definitely won’t make the cut. The glamorous French gathering is notorious for waiting until the last minute before locking in every slot for its Official Selection. That includes competition titles, out of competition titles, a small midnight section and the Un Certain Regard sidebar. Cannes announces the bulk of its selections in Paris on April 13, but until then, there are plenty of ways to make educated guesses. Much of the reporting surrounding the upcoming festival selection is simply lists of films expected to come out this year. However, certain movies are definitely not going to the festival for various reasons.

That’s why our own list of potentials doesn’t include “Image Et Parole,” Jean-Luc Godard’s followup to “Goodbye to Language,” which sales agent Wild Bunch now anticipates as a 2018 title.
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Toni Erdmann’ Remake: Why We’re Skeptical About the New Cast — Analysis

  • Thompson on Hollywood
‘Toni Erdmann’ Remake: Why We’re Skeptical About the New Cast — Analysis
This week, it was announced German language Oscar nominee “Toni Erdmann,” the third directing effort from writer-director Maren Ade, would be remade in English with Jack Nicholson and Kristen Wiig. Since IndieWire recently curated a gallery suggesting the cast for this developing project, several members of the editorial team shared the following thoughts on the latest news and whether or not it bodes well for the upcoming film.

Anne Thompson: So now we know who’s starring in the Paramount remake of Oscar-nominated “Toni Erdmann.” Jack Nicholson had the sense to like the movie so much that he convinced Paramount chairman Brad Grey to acquire the rights so he could play the snaggle-toothed father. The studio has cast Kristen Wiig as his workaholic achiever daughter, which means that they are chasing a commercial American comedy. (If they were invested in Oscars, they’d have cast deeper actresses Amy Adams or Jessica Chastain.
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

‘Toni Erdmann’ Remake: Why We’re Skeptical About the New Cast — Analysis

  • Indiewire
‘Toni Erdmann’ Remake: Why We’re Skeptical About the New Cast — Analysis
This week, it was announced German language Oscar nominee “Toni Erdmann,” the third directing effort from writer-director Maren Ade, would be remade in English with Jack Nicholson and Kristen Wiig. Since IndieWire recently curated a gallery suggesting the cast for this developing project, several members of the editorial team shared the following thoughts on the latest news and whether or not it bodes well for the upcoming film.

Anne Thompson: So now we know who’s starring in the Paramount remake of Oscar-nominated “Toni Erdmann.” Jack Nicholson had the sense to like the movie so much that he convinced Paramount chairman Brad Grey to acquire the rights so he could play the snaggle-toothed father. The studio has cast Kristen Wiig as his workaholic achiever daughter, which means that they are chasing a commercial American comedy. (If they were invested in Oscars, they’d have cast deeper actresses Amy Adams or Jessica Chastain.
See full article at Indiewire »

Jack Nicholson Lands 'Toni Erdmann' Remake, First Movie Since 2010

Jack Nicholson Lands 'Toni Erdmann' Remake, First Movie Since 2010
Jack Nicholson will star in his first movie since 2010, an English-language adaptation of the Oscar-nominated German film Toni Erdmann, Variety reports.

Kristen Wiig will reportedly co-star alongside Nicholson in the remake of Maren Ade's 2016 comedy-drama, which will compete for Best Foreign Language Film at this year's Academy Awards. Toni Erdmann tells the story of an elderly man with a penchant for pranks and wearing disguises, who attempts to reconnect with his daughter, an aspiring, no-nonsense corporate consultant.

A writer and director for the English-language adaptation of Toni Erdmann have yet to be announced,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

14 of the Wildest Golden Globe Moments Ever

  • PEOPLE.com
14 of the Wildest Golden Globe Moments Ever
The Golden Globes has long held a reputation as the loosey-goosey younger sibling of the Academy Awards. Maybe it’s because it’s the start of awards show season, and stars aren’t yet tired of the red carpet grind. Or maybe it’s just become a self-fulfilling prophecy of the show that celebrities are going to get a little silly, but for whatever reason, the Globes annually seem to give us more double-take moments than most Hollywood spectacles. Let’s look at some of our favorites.

Emma Thompson throws her shoes (2014)

One word: Queen.

Lady Gaga vs. Leonardo DiCaprio
See full article at PEOPLE.com »

How ‘A Man Called Ove’ Became a Sleeper For the Best Foreign Film Oscar

How ‘A Man Called Ove’ Became a Sleeper For the Best Foreign Film Oscar
Edward Arentz is in a good mood. Earlier this year at the Berlin Film Festival, the Music Box Films managing director picked up a little Swedish comedy, “A Man Called Ove.” (That’s “oo-veh.”) No one else was much interested in the grumpy-old-man movie starring the original Wallander, Rolf Lassgård, which falls in the mold of Jack Nicholson’s “About Schmidt” or Clint Eastwood’s “Grand Torino” (without the guns).

But Arentz found himself crying, laughing, and deeply moved. And over the years he has learned to trust his gut. After all, he picked up U.S. rights to three other little Swedish films that became a worldwide phenomenon, “The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo” series ($22 million U.S. total). That experience paved the way for “A Man Called Ove.” At $3.3 million, it’s the highest-grossing foreign-language film of 2016, has landed on the foreign-language Oscar shortlist, and has a strong shot at a nomination.
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »
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