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Jennifer Aniston has been to the Golden Globes before. In fact, she took home a top prize in 2003. But that Best Actress win was for her role as Rachel Green, the Friends character that made Aniston one of the most famous and beloved actresses on the planet. In Cake, the small indie that earned her a Best Actress in a Drama nomination this morning, people might not even recognize her. Aniston plays Claire, an angry, scar-faced woman who suffers from chronic pain that drives her to irritable and irrational extremes. When a member of her chronic-pain group (Anna Kendrick) commits suicide, »
- Jeff Labrecque
We are in the middle of what could be a career-changing two-day span for Jennifer Aniston. The "Friends" icon and star of such blockbuster fare as "Marley & Me," "Bruce Almighty" and "We're the Millers" shocked many by earning a SAG Awards nomination Wednesday for her role in the indie drama "Cake." By Thursday morning she may have a Golden Globe nomination to go along with it. Directed by Daniel Barnz, "Cake" went somewhat under the radar after it earned a standing ovation at the Toronto Film Festival in September (although this pundit was certainly there). The movie finds Aniston playing Claire, a woman suffering from chronic pain who becomes strangely fascinated by the suicide of a young woman (Anna Kendrick) from her support group. Obviously, Claire is suffering from more than just physical pain and Aniston, as I wrote in my review, "makes you believe this character is at her »
- Gregory Ellwood
Predictably it was a big morning for Boyhood and Birdman at the SAG nominations, the first really important awards announcement of the season as it comes from an actual guild and not a critics group. Those two films are very actor-centric and true ensembles so I would imagine they will fight it out for the ultimate Cast award, SAG’s version of Best Picture, while nominees The Imitation Game and The Theory Of Everything will likely split those sympathetic to British casts. Guild noms are a much better indicator generally of the way Oscar winds are blowing, so the importance of this SAG list can’t be underestimated even though, as usual, these nominees are chosen by lottery by a random 2100 person sample of SAG’s more than 100,000 -strong overall membership who will vote on the final winners. It should be noted that the discrepancy between SAG and Oscar acting »
- Pete Hammond
By Anjelica Oswald
Jennifer Aniston, the Emmy, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Award nominee, could land her first Oscar nomination for her role as a woman suffering from chronic pain after surviving a car crash in Daniel Barnz’s Cake. (It won’t be a contender in the musical or comedy category at the Golden Globes. The nominations will be announced Dec. 11.)
The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and received a standing ovation. Though the film has received mixed reviews, Aniston’s performance has been described as an ”honest, sturdy performance.” The Los Angeles Times’ Betsy Sharkey said that “it is a serious treat to see the actress stretch herself.”
Aniston embraced going sans makeup in the film (except for fake scars) and found freedom in it. At a press conference in Toronto, she said, “I loved every minute of it. It was extremely liberating to do that. »
- Anjelica Oswald
Awards season is heating up, and one of the potential Best Actress contenders, believe it or not, may be Jennifer Aniston. The actress rarely goes down the indie road, but when she has before (The Good Girl), it's resulted in some solid work. This time she's getting plenty of acclaim for Cake, a film that strips down Aniston to being a plain, scarred, troubled woman, angry at the world and everyone around her. And there's an interesting supporting cast here too with Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington and Adriana Barraza appearing as well. The buzz indicates the film may not be as good as Aniston's performance, but we'll see. Here's the first trailer for Daniel Barnz's Cake, originally from ABC News: Cake is directed by Daniel Barnz (Beastly, Won't Back Down) from a script by Patrick Tobin (No Easy Way). Claire Simmons (Jennifer Aniston) is in pain. Her physical »
- Ethan Anderton
The Independent Spirit Awards were never supposed to be a harbinger of the Oscars, but in recent years, the booze-infused celebration in Santa Monica — held the night before the Academy Awards — had become just that. All the acting winners at last year’s Oscar ceremony picked up a Spirit first, and so did best picture champ “12 Years a Slave.”
So it’s particularly confusing that this year’s Spirit nominations completely shut out what is supposed to be one of the season’s heavyweights: The Weinstein Co.’s “The Imitation Game.” It wasn’t a good day for Harvey Weinstein in general, since his entire awards season slate of “St. Vincent,” “Begin Again” and “Big Eyes” (which only got a screenplay nod) was left out.
While the Oscar voters and Spirit nominating committee don’t overlap, in a competitive awards season, these nominations do matter. It gently nudges voters on »
- Ramin Setoodeh and Jenelle Riley
The persona adopted by Jennifer Aniston in the early stages of her career has been thoroughly decimated for her next feature, Cake. Gone is the shiny hair, the perfect make-up… basically her impossibly beauteous image has taken a backseat for her performance in Daniel Barnz’s darker-than-night comedy.
In the role of Claire Simmons, Aniston tackles heavier material than we’re used to seeing her handle. Sure, she’s dabbled in less fluffy fare for The Good Girl and Horrible Bosses, but it seems like the former Friends star is trying to shake the sheen from her reputation. In the pic, Aniston plays a struggling Los Angeles woman who turns to a series of vices to help dull her chronic pain.
Her turn in Cake has already landed her a round of critical praise following its debut at the Toronto International Film Festival. This stream of positive reviews are no »
- Gem Seddon
For this week’s spotlight piece, I wanted to take a look at one of Hollywood’s most interesting stars. It’s certified A-lister Jake Gyllenhaal, the rare actor who’s only becoming more famous as he pursues more and more interesting fare. In fact, for a true blue A-list actor, he’s only rarely gone the blockbuster route. More often, he chooses unique work that requires him to really go above and beyond. Already an Academy Award nominee, he’s someone who’s due for not just another nomination, but a win as well. I have no doubt that Oscar will come calling soon, perhaps even next year, but when that time comes, he’ll be incredibly deserving of that honor. As such, it’s a pleasure to fete him this week in my Spotlight on the Stars series. Gyllenhaal got his start on screens with a small role in City Slickers, »
- Joey Magidson
One of the more interesting things about film festivals is seeing how the various well regarded independent films are handled once the tests end. Some seek to capitalize on their buzz and open as soon as possible, while others strategically plan to begin their release later on in the year, or the next year entirely. In the case of Cake, the Jennifer Aniston led dark comedy was initially planning to be held back until 2015, but now it’s seeking to upend the Best Actress race with a late 2014 push. Aniston was snubbed once before for The Good Girl, so could Cake represent a chance for the Academy to make it up to her? It’s far from a sure thing, but something tells me that this isn’t something to sleep on. A long shot? Perhaps, but one to consider at the very least. Cake is a dark comedy/drama »
- Joey Magidson
While the City Sleeps: Gyllenhaal Gets His Money Shot in Gilroy’s Debut
You’ll be hard pressed to find a more enjoyably witty criticism of modern exploitative media tactics taken to a new extreme than Dan Gilroy’s viciously adept directorial debut, Nightcrawler. Humanity’s morbid curiosity with the grisly, disturbing, and depraved happenings in the world around us has long tainted the art of journalism and mass media, and has thus been depicted for ages already in the cinema. Gilroy’s film owes as much to Billy Wilder’s Ace in the Hole (1951) as it does Sidney Lumet’s Network (1976), upping the action ante with the growing Gilroy stamp (his brother directed Michael Clayton and the last Bourne film). And yet, it’s an excitingly well written dark hearted treatise with a vitriolic little statement all its own, a glorious new love letter to the seedy underside of Los Angeles, »
- Nicholas Bell
Director Miguel Arteta is known mostly for his dark, indie films (The Good Girl, Youth In Revolt), but he transitions to mainstream Hollywood with his first Disney film, Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. CineMovie sat down with the Puerto Rican filmmaker in Miami to talk about working with Steve Carell and finding the right Alexander who wasn’t your typical Hollywood kid.
- email@example.com (Super User)
Miguel Arteta began his feature film directing career in 1997 with “Star Maps,” which was nominated for the Independent Spirit’s Best First Feature Award. He followed with a series of critically acclaimed independent hits, including “Chuck & Buck,” “The Good Girl,” “Youth in Revolt,” and “Cedar Rapids.” Also an established television director, his small screen credits include “Freaks & Geeks,” “Six Feet Under,” “The Office,” “Enlightened,” and “American Horror Story.” His new film is a bit of a departure–a children’s film and a studio comedy. “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” stars Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner and based on Judith Viorst’s beloved children’s book, hits theaters Oct. 10.What attracted you to this film?
- Kevin Noonan
Privilege Parable: Arteta’s Trifling Adaptation of Famed Children’s’ Novel
Perhaps the most curious aspect of the live action Disney version of Judith Viorst’s 1972 children’s story (the first in a series), Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is that it’s helmed by Miguel Arteta, a director known for rather frankly adult material such as Chuck & Buck (2000), The Good Girl (2002), and Cedar Rapids (2011). What initially attracted him to the project, which was originally set to be helmed by Lisa Cholodenko, feels wholly absent from this end product, an extremely watered down version of the complicated human relationships generally on display in Arteta’s films. While one can’t really complain that this is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad film, per se, one shouldn’t be surprised that it’s calibrated specifically for a particular audience, the privileged white familial nuclear unit, »
- Nicholas Bell
Alexander may have had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, but the red carpet premiere of Disney’s movie adaptation of Judith Viorst’s children’s classic was anything but, with stars Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner and Ed Oxenbould (in the titular tween role) all smiles as they entered Hollywood’s El Capitan for Monday evening’s screening.
“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” scribe Rob Lieber used the 1972 illustrated story about a boy for whom everything goes wrong (from gum in his hair to lima beans for dinner) as a jumping-off point to craft characters that “stayed consistent with the theme of the book.”
“It’s about a kid who always feels like he has a dark cloud over his head, it’s about feeling like you’re the only one having a bad day, and I thought that was a really universal concept, »
- Malina Saval
So is Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day going to have a not terrible, not horrible, very good weekend when it debuts Friday? Deadline Awards Columnist Pete Hammond reviews Disney’s film adaptation of the much-loved (and frequently adapted) children’s book and gives his verdict on the 2014 version.
The film is directed by Miguel Arteta (The Good Girl, a whole lot of TV) and stars Steve Carell (Foxcatcher, The Office) and Jennifer Garner (Dallas Buyers Club, Men, Women & Children) as poor Alexander’s equally put-upon parents.
Are you a fan of the book? Looking forward to the film? Let us know what you think.
- Pete Hammond
For your chance to receive two (2) complimentary passes to see Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day at the Mjr Troy in Troy, Michigan on Wednesday, October 8th at 7:00Pm, just look for the “Enter the Contest” box further down on this page. But hurry, because there are a limited number of passes available and when they’re gone, they’re gone!
About The Film
Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day: Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” follows the exploits of 11-year-old Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) as he experiences the most terrible and horrible day of his young life—a day that begins with gum stuck in his hair, »
Toronto has always been a place for reinvention — in 2008, Anne Hathaway came to the festival marred by her ex-boyfriend’s federal arrest, and left as an Oscar darling for “Rachel Getting Married.” And in 2013, Sandra Bullock launched as an astronaut in “Gravity,” and Jared Leto returned to acting with “Dallas Buyers Club.” But this year, especially, a handful of actors departed Canada with a new career jolt. Here are the biggest Toronto transformations.
Redmayne delivered impressive supporting work in film like 2012’s “Les Miserables” and 2011’s “My Week With Marilyn.” But his magnificent performance as Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything” should land him on Hollywood’s leading man list, and get him his first Oscar nomination. In a physical transformation on par with Matthew McConaughey in “Dallas Buyers Club,” Redmayne embodies Hawking to the point of convincing viewers they are watching a documentary. »
- Brent Lang and Ramin Setoodeh
Jennifer Aniston — Oscar contender? You better believe it after the tumultuous standing ovation she received at the Elgin Theatre on Monday afternoon for her potentially career-changing film Cake after the end credits had rolled. Sans makeup but for scars and other disfigurements, Aniston proved way beyond cosmetic changes that she is the real thing. She’s heartbreakingly good, alternately bitingly dramatic and funny in this story of a woman suffering with chronic pain. It is also partially to the credit of writer Patrick Tobin and director Daniel Barnz (Phoebe In Wonderland, Won’t Back Down) that Aniston’s character Claire doesn’t strike a false note throughout.
Given the right distributor (and I hear several are in the hunt) this should be Aniston’s Monster or Monster’s Ball — or even Dallas Buyers Club, which transformed Matthew McConaughey’s career last year and brought him the Best Actor Oscar. There »
- Pete Hammond
Toronto — Chances are that anyone who saw Daniel Barnz's "Phoebe in Wonderland" at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival has been wondering if we'd ever see "that" talented director again. In the years since, he tried to jump on the Ya wagon with the misfire "Beastly" and got terribly lost in the studio world with 2012's "Won't Back Down." He may still be a little rough around the edges, but the Barnz who showed so much promise with "Phoebe" is back with the new drama "Cake," which premiered Monday at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival. And as much as "Cake" is something of a comeback for Barnz, it's really on most people's radar for being a rare dramatic turn for Jennifer Aniston, and she doesn't disappoint. We're first introduced to Aniston's character, Claire, at a chronic pain support group trying to cope with the suicide of one of their members, Nina »
- Gregory Ellwood
Somehow, Jake Gyllenhaal doesn.t get full credit for the chances he takes as an actor. And yet, this is a performer who burst on the scene in City Slickers, but boasts such incredible, daring and unconventional films as Donnie Darko, Brokeback Mountain, Jarhead, The Good Girl and David Fincher.s masterpiece, Zodiac. But the Dicaprios and Depps of the world get lauded for their high-profile risks, while Gyllenhaal keeps delivering with the likes of Prisoners or Enemy. The tide should turn in Gyllenhaal.s favor, finally, with Nightcrawler, a seedy, after-hours contemporary thriller about the insomniac ambulance chasers who record exclusive video at human tragedies, then sell them for top dollar to ratings-hungry local news producers. Louis Bloom (Gyllenhaal) is an out-of-work hustler, a hard-working fast talker who chases job opportunities around every corner. On the way home from a scavenger hunt . during which he sells stolen metals to »
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