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Lelouch at the switch for Lumiere nods

19 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

PARIS -- Claude Lelouch will preside over the 13th edition of the Lumiere Awards when the annual gala lights up the city of lights Jan. 13, organizers said Tuesday.

The Lumieres, voted on by foreign press based in Paris, reward the year's best French films and talent.

Nominees for film of the year include Julian Schnabel's The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Alfred Lot's La chambre des morts, Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud's Persepolis, Olivier Dahan's La Vie en Rose and the recent Louis Delluc prize-winner The Secret of the Grain from Abdellatif Kechiche.

Lumiere prizes also will be given to best director, actress, actor, screenplay, most promising female and male newcomers and best Francophone film.

The event, to take place at Paris' Hotel de Ville auditorium, will close Unifrance's 10th annual Rendez-Vous With French Cinema, set to kick off in the capital Jan. 11.

Organized by the Lumieres Academy, the prizes also are funded by national film body the CNC, Unifrance, the city of Paris, TV5Monde and the French syndicate of film critics in partnership with the Cesar awards academy. »

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London critics like the look of 'Blood'

15 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

LONDON -- Paul Thomas Anderson's There Will Be Blood is nominated in a trio of major categories for this year's London Film Critics' Circle awards.

Anderson's tale of U.S. oil prospectors in a frontier town is nominated for film of the year and director of the year as well as actor of the year for Daniel Day-Lewis.

The nominations were announced Friday.

To win the best film award, Blood will have to fend off the mighty challenge of No Country for Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Zodiac and The Bourne Ultimatum.

Anderson will slug it out with Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (The Lives of Others), Joel and Ethan Coen (No Country for Old Men), David Fincher (Zodiac) and Cristian Mungiu (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days) in the fight for director of the year.

Up against Lewis in the actor category are the late Ulrich Muhe (The Lives of Others), Casey Affleck (Jesse James), George Clooney (Michael Clayton) and Tommy Lee Jones (In the Valley of Elah).

Vying for actress of the year are Laura Linney (The Savages), Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose), Maggie Gyllenhaal (SherryBaby), Angelina Jolie (A Mighty Heart) and Anamaria Marinca (4 Months).

The London Critics' Circle awards concentrate heavily on U.K. endeavors at the cinema, with eight of the 14 categories exclusively there to reward British talent.

The Attenborough Award for British film of the year will go to either Once, Control, Atonement, Eastern Promises or This Is England.

British director of the year might just go to Dutch-born Anton Corbijn for his stint behind the lens of Control, with challenges from Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Ultimatum), Shane Meadows (This Is England), Joe Wright (Atonement) and Danny Boyle (Sunshine).

The awards will be given out at a ceremony in the British capital Feb. »

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Globe nominees speak out

14 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Complete coverage:

'Atonement' out front

Strike curbs enthusiasm

Nominees react

'Massive sweep' for Focus

'Damages' leads TV pack

In a year of topical, often violent films, a period love story like "Atonement" stands out. But the forces behind the most nominated film of the Golden Globes aren't sure it is all that different from other current fare. Director Joe Wright said that while he saw the movie as a "classic love story, it's also about young men at war, and what can be more relevant than that?" Star James McAvoy said the film's universality makes it appealing even in this age of the blockbuster. " 'Atonement' is about basic human issues like redemption and forgiveness," he said. "Its success doesn't depend on timing or on fashion or on fad. It doesn't depend on hitting its target market. I've talked to interviewers who are 'Transformers' kind of people, and having seen the movie they end up coming out moved by it."

*****

John Travolta is not immune to the excitement surrounding nominations and awards: Until he received the phone call with news of his "Hairspray" nom, the actor was up all night staring at the clock in his New York apartment. "You try not to anticipate it happening, but you can't help it," he said. "I had to prove to myself that I could go the distance with this part." Travolta said he wouldn't rule out showcasing his musical talents again. "I'd love to do another musical in the near future," he said, "but it's a special art form -- one that needs to be honored and really cared for."

*****

"I'm in the old section of Paris drinking Edith Piaf's favorite champagne, Bollinger, which has become mine," said exuberant "La Vie en Rose" star Marion Cotillard of her best musical actress nomination. "The first big reaction was when it did well in France, and then the film got recognition all around the world. It's just been a series of surprises, and I hope it never ends." Picturehouse president Bob Berney wasn't surprised by Cotillard's success. "For me, it was expected. I think when people in Los Angeles met her in person, it was shocking to them how different she was from the character."

*****

Sitting in her London home and nine months pregnant, Helena Bonham Carter was more concerned Thursday with begetting a child than a Golden Globe statue. "Right now, I'm trying to have a baby," she said. "When I'm done with the labor and contractions, I can think about award shows -- which I suppose can take longer than the labor and contractions." Bonham Carter also is surprised that she could pull off songs and lyrics. "Pretty much from the womb I wanted to be in a musical, but I never thought I could sing beyond the bathroom," she said.

*****

The morning of the Golden Globe nominations was different for "Grey's Anatomy" creator Shonda Rhimes this year. "I slept through (the announcement)," she said. "Grey's", which won the best drama series Globe last time around, landed two noms: best drama and best supporting actress for Emmy winner Katherine Heigl. Rhimes' other series, the "Grey"'s spinoff "Private Practice", didn't get a nom, but she is OK with that. "It's fine", she said. "We enjoy the work on the show, and hopefully will have the chance of doing more of it on both 'Practice' and 'Grey's.' " Production on both shows has been suspended because of the writers strike. The work stoppage also has modified the way Rhimes celebrates her show's nominations. "Today I'll take my daughter to school, will walk the picket line and will keep reorganizing my closet," she said.

*****

Despite the sometimes nasty nature of her character on FX's "Damages", Glenn Close insisted she really is a nice person. Close learned of her nomination for best TV drama series actress from a friend in Florida while visiting her hometown of Greenwich, Conn. The multiple award-winner, who won a Globe in 2005 for "The Lion in Winter" and was nominated in 2006 for "The Shield", said her character gets noticed because it's rare for a woman her age to get such a role. "She keeps people off balance all the time, and people are intrigued by that," she said.

*****

"Eastern Promises" and "Atonement" producer Paul Webster was in London heading to a massage for his "dingy shoulder" when he learned of the three "Promises" and seven "Atonement" noms. "My masseuse was absolutely unimpressed, and I think she elbowed my shoulder even harder than usual," he said. Webster was especially happy about the noms for David Cronenberg's "Promises". "I think it's belated and deserved recognition for one of the world's greatest filmmakers. Long may it continue," he said. Webster called "Atonement" star Keira Knightley, who was "her usual modest self" and asked whether his wife was coming. "She wants to talk with her about what to wear," he said.

*****

"Woo-hoo!" shouted "The Simpsons Movie" director David Silverman when he learned of the animated feature's Globe nomination. Producer James L. Brooks' reaction was a little less Homeresque at first. "I had the feeling that any human being should have when the phone suddenly rings at 5 a.m. -- that something bad has happened," he said. "It was somebody telling me I was nominated, but by then I had already put five bullets in the wall." Jokes aside, the pair said it was a great feeling to have the movie be recognized in a world of CGI and 3-D animated tales, especially one 18 years in the making. "Anytime that wiggly drawings are acknowledged, it's a true honor," "Simpsons" creator Matt Groening said. Silverman said he'll celebrate the nomination with a haircut, a new shirt and perhaps a doughnut. But for showrunner Brooks, he'll head to the picket line with the rest of the striking writers. "Of course, there's a pall", he said. "We live by diffusing our misery with jokes. This is not a great holiday season in town, and it's painful. The amazing thing is the kind of goodwill on the line every day, and that's sustaining people."

*****

"Hairspray" producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan were once a rare pair in Hollywood pushing traditional movie musicals, but Thursday saw their latest film nominated for best musical or comedy. "A few years ago, there were no musicals nominated in this category," Meron said. "Craig and I made it our mission to bring them back, first on TV ... and then in film. If it wasn't for the success of (our project) 'Chicago, ' there probably wouldn't be a 'Dreamgirls' or 'Sweeney Todd.' What a change." Their track record helped persuade John Travolta to don a dress. "We felt a great burden of responsibility when we talked to John about doing his first musical in nearly 30 years," Zadan said. "We promised him we could take this all the way, so it was wonderful to see him nominated. And just a year ago, (best musical actress nominee) Nikki Blonsky was scooping ice cream."

*****

Tom Wilkinson said he was polishing shoes at his house in the U.K. when he got the call that he was nominated for his supporting role in "Michael Clayton". "It's a great feeling in the sense that even at my great age, I'm still doing decent work which people are interested in," he said. "And I love the Golden Globes. Have I ever won one? No, no, I don't think I have -- but it's always the best time."

*****

Somehow, David Duchovny's manager was able to penetrate the actor's "hotel fortress" in Vancouver to alert him of his Golden Globe nomination for best actor in a TV comedy series. "She said it was an awards-related emergency," Duchovny said. The "Californication" star had been up all night shooting scenes for the new "X-Files" movie. He made sure to turn off all his devices and hang a "do not disturb" sign but nevertheless was thrilled to hear the news. "Awards are nice in the moment, but (a nomination) is wonderful because it brings attention to the show," he said. The multiple-award winner -- he won a best actor Globe in 1997 for TV's "The X-Files" -- planned to celebrate by going back to sleep, dreaming he was never awakened and waking up to live it all over again.

*****

"I'm so excited! It's mother and daughter getting nominated," Nikki Blonsky quipped about her "Hairspray" nom for best performance by an actress in a motion picture, comedy or musical, and that of her co-star John Travolta in the supporting actor category. Blonsky, who heard the news in Toronto, said the moment her name was uttered was as shocking and exciting as the moment she found out she got the part. "It was a huge shock to me, a huge and utter shock. I was crying, jumping and throwing things," she said.

*****

Producer Kathleen Kennedy woke up to see her flight from New York to Los Angeles canceled because of a snowstorm, but at least two of her films were nominated: "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" and "Persepolis". And they're in an unlikely category for the oft-nominated Hollywood vet: best foreign-language film. "This is exactly what the Academy Awards should be about: promoting films that don't have the resources of some with an $80 million-$100 million marketing budget," she said. "The only frustration is 'Diving Bell' not being qualified for the foreign-language Oscar, which is and will continue to be confusing to people. But the writing and directing nominations are a big help."

*****

Of all the people who were surprised by the best picture drama nomination for the Russian mobster movie "Eastern Promises", perhaps the most surprised was the man who made it. Director David Cronenberg, who had never been nominated for a Golden Globe, had been girding for one major nomination; he never saw the other one coming. "I'd have been surprised if Viggo wasn't nominated, but I really didn't expect the movie to be nominated," he said.

*****

Julie Taymor sat in bed in New York and watched the nominations live. "It's wonderful to be a dark horse because it means people are voting with their heart," the ecstatic "Across the Universe" director said of her film's inclusion in the best musical lineup. Her hope now is that more people will see the film. "It's about tremendous joy and inspiration, and that's what I want to hear -- that people were moved and transformed by the work."

*****

Golden Globe nominations are no stranger to "Charlie Wilson's War" screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, who received noms for the politically themed films "A Few Good Men" (1992) and "The American President" (1995). »

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'Into the Wild' leads Broadcast Critics' noms

12 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

With seven nominations, Sean Penn's Into the Wild, the account of a young man who leaves society behind, led the pack as the Broadcast Film Critics Assn. announced its nominees for its 13th annual Critics' Choice Awards Tuesday morning in New York.

Wild figured in the categories of best picture, best actor for Emile Hirsch, best supporting actor for Hal Holbrook, best supporting actress for Catherine Keener and best song for Eddie Vedder's "Guaranteed" and picked up a double nomination for Penn as both writer and director.

The pregnant comedy Juno followed with six noms, followed by a clutch of films -- Atonement, Michael Clayton, No Country for Old Men, Sweeney Todd and Hairspray -- that scored five noms each.

Several actors received dual recogntion. Newcomer Michael Cera appeared twice among the nominees for best young actor for his performances as a horny teen in Superbad and an unexpected father in Juno. Cate Blanchett was hailed with a best actress nom for Elizabeth: The Golden Age and a supporting actress nom for her Dylanesque appearance in I'm Not There. Amy Adams, who plays a Disneyesque princess in Enchanted was nominated for best actress and made an appearance in the best song category for "That's How I Know" -- in the song category, the group recognizes the performer who performs a song on film.

Made up of nearly 200 TV, radio and online critics from the United States and Canada, the BFCA prides itself on its ability to foreshadow eventual Oscar noms and awards.

However, the BFCA does load up some of its categories with six nominations each to cover its bases. And for best picture, the group nominated ten films that encompassed American Gangster, Atonement, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Into the Wild, Juno, The Kite Runner, Michael Clayton, No Country for Old Men, Sweeney Todd and There Will Be Blood.

In addition to Hirsch, the best actor heat includes George Clooney (Michael Clayton), Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood), Johnny Depp (Sweeny Todd), Ryan Gosling (Lars and the Real Girl) and Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises).

For best actress, Adams and Blanchett will face off against Julie Christie (Away from Her), Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose), Angelina Jolie (A Mighty Heart) and Ellen Page (Juno).

Nominated for best supporting actor are Holbrook, Casey Affleck (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford), Javier Bardem (Country), Philip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson's War) and Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton).

Seven directors appeared among the BFCA's six nominations for best director, thanks to a shared nomination for brothers Joel and Ethan Coen for Country. Their competition embraces Penn, Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd), Sidney Lumet ("Before the Devil Knows Your Dead"), Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell) and Joe Wright (Atonement).

In the best writer category, the nominees are Penn, Diablo Cody (Juno), the Coens (Country), Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton), Nancy Oliver (Lars) and Aaron Sorkin (Charlie Wilson's War).

Bee Movie, Beowulf, Persepolis, Ratatouille and The Simpsons Movie will all compete as best animated movie. »

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'No Country for Old Men' Tops With Critics' Awards

10 December 2007 | IMDb News

As the awards season begins, no less than four critics' groups announced their awards over the past two days, with the highest-profile group, the New York Film Critics Circle, giving its top honor to emerging favorite No Country for Old Men. Quickly turning into the movie to beat this season, the Coen brothers movie also won the Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actor (Javier Bardem) awards from the Gotham critics. Top acting honors went to Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood) and Julie Christie (Away From Her), with the supporting actress award going to Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone), who is appearing on as many winners' lists as the Coen brothers. Other winners included The Lives of Others (Foreign Language Film), Persepolis (Animated Film), and No End in Sight (Documentary).

In Los Angeles on Sunday, there was blood -- and lots of it -- as Paul Thomas Anderson's historical epic There Will Be Blood swept the awards, taking Best Picture, Director, and Lead Actor (Daniel Day-Lewis) honors. Marion Cotillard of La Vie En Rose was named Best Actress, Vlad Ivanov of the Romanian abortion drama 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days was the surprise supporting actor winner, and -- yes -- Amy Ryan was named best supporting actress for Gone Baby Gone as well as Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days also won the foreign language film award, and Tamara Jenkins's The Savages received best screenplay honors. No End in Sight was the documentary winner, with Ratatouille and Persepolis sharing the animated feature award.

Also handing out awards on Sunday was the Boston Society of Film Critics, which jumped on the No Country for Old Men bandwagon, naming it their best picture and Javier Bardem as the supporting actor winner. While Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose) was the lead actress winner, the group threw a couple curveballs with awards to lead actor Frank Langella for the acclaimed but little-seen drama Starting Out in the Evening, and to director Julian Schnabel for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (which also won cinematography and foreign language film honors). Once again, Amy Ryan won the supporting actress award for Gone Baby Gone. Other winners included Ratatouille (screenplay) and Crazy Love (documentary).

And sharing in the fun was the Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association, which along with Boston and New York named No Country for Old Men as their Best Picture, and giving the Coen brothers directing honors and Javier Bardem the supporting actor award; to exacerbate the sense of deja vu, Amy Ryan was again the supporting actress winner for Gone Baby Gone. A bevy of usual suspects rounded out the DC awards, with George Clooney (Michael Clayton) and Julie Christie (Away From Her) nabbing lead acting awards, and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly taking the foreign language film honor. Other winners included Michael Moore's Sicko (documentary), Ratatouille (animated film), Charlie Wilson's War (adapted screenplay) and Juno (original screenplay and breakthrough performance for Ellen Page).

Following up these critical honors will be the announcement of the Golden Globe nominations this Thursday morning; the Academy Award nominations will be unveiled next month on Tuesday, January 22. --Mark Englehart, IMDb staff

»

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L.A. critics give 'Blood,' Day-Lewis top honors

10 December 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Paul Thomas Anderson's "There Will Be Blood", an epic tale of the oil business in early 20th century California, won four awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Assn. on Sunday, including best picture, director and actor honors.

Anderson was selected as best director, while Daniel Day-Lewis' performance as a rapacious oil man in "Blood" won as best actor. The group also gave its production design honor to "Blood"'s Jack Fisk, whose early California design won over Dante Ferretti's re-creation of late 19th century London for "Sweeney Todd".

The other multiple-award winner was Cristian Mungiu's Romanian film "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days" -- the Palme d'Or winner at this year's Festival de Cannes -- which won best foreign-language film honors and best supporting actor for Vlad Ivanov, who played the abortionist in the film.

The film that finished runner-up in the best picture and director categories was Julian Schnabel's French-language "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly."

Best actress went to France Marion's Cotillard as Edith Piaf in the biopic "La Vie en Rose".

Tamara Jenkins won best screenplay for "The Savages", her comic drama about two quarreling siblings trying to settle their mentally failing father, beating out "Blood", Anderson's adaptation of Upton Sinclair's novel. »

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'Heroes' makes way to ARCHOS units

28 November 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

PARIS -- French owners of ARCHOS Generation 5 WiFi portable media players can watch now episodes from Season 2 of NBC's Heroes directly on their machines, Gallic broadcaster TF1 said.

The offer follows NBC Universal's recent deal with TF1 to air Heroes on its VOD site just 24 hours after the original stateside broadcast.

ARCHOS Generation 5 WiFi player owners also can access TF1's full catalog of titles, including feature films La Vie en Rose, Taxi 4, Tell No One and Pan's Labyrinth as well as TV series and exclusive shows, including performances from national celebrities.

All programs are available in streaming, temporary download or permanent download from TF1 Vision's Web site www.tf1vision.fr. »

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'Queen' reigns over EFA

5 November 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

COLOGNE, Germany -- The nominations for the 2007 European Film Awards held few surprises, with Stephen Frears' The Queen reigning over the best in European film with six nominations, including ones for best film and director.

The pretender to Queen's throne is Kevin Macdonald's The Last King of Scotland, which received five EFA noms, including one for best film.

Also in the running for the top prize of European Film 2007 are a bevy of festival favorites, including Cristian Mungiu's Cannes Palme d'Or winner 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days; Fatih Akin's cross-cultural drama The Edge of Heaven and Oliver Dahan's Edith Piaf biopic La Vie en Rose, all of which received multiple EFA nominations.

The dark horse in the best film race is Persepolis, the animated feature by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud based on Satrapi's graphic novel.

Beat out in the best picture run but still attracting EFA nominations in the direction, acting and cinematography categories was the mystery thriller The Unknown, from Italian director Giuseppe Tornatore.

The makeup of the European Film Academy, whose 1,800 members vote for the EFAs, tends to favor productions from Western Europe, and this year's nominations attest to that.

With the notable exception of Mungiu's much-praised 4 Months, only two productions from Eastern or Central Europe made the cut: Banishment, from Russian director Andrei Zvyagintsev, and the Serbian musical comedy Gucha, from Dusan Milic.

Another exception to the dominance of "old Europe" is the Israeli crowd-pleaser The Band's Visit, which picked up nominations in the European actor and European screenplay categories.

The only other multiple nominee at this year's EFAs is Tom Tykwer's European boxoffice hit Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, which received four nominations, including one in the best European actor section for newcomer Ben Whishaw. »

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Pitt Arrives in Green Style at Awards Show

24 October 2007 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Brad Pitt went green at the Hollywood Awards on Monday night, arriving at the glitzy Los Angeles event in a chauffeur-driven Toyota Prius hybrid. The actor was there to present his The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford co-star, Casey Affleck, with the Breakthrough Actor of The Year prize. Meanwhile, Richard Gere was named Actor of The Year for The Hoax, John Travolta picked up the Supporting Actor of The Year prize for Hairspray and Casey's brother Ben Affleck claimed the Breakthrough Director gong for Gone Baby Gone. Jennifer Connelly was named Supporting Actress of the Year for Reservation Road and French star Marion Cotillard claimed the Breakthrough Actress prize for her portrayal of singer Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose. The Hollywood Awards are part of the annual Hollywood Film Festival. »

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France's Foreign Oscar nom: Persepolis

18 September 2007 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- The French don’t have it easy – selecting just one film among a good dozen to rep the country in the foreign film category of the Academy Awards must be an arduous task. This year (probably a dilemma that occurs in most years where a film like Amelie is not running) means some Oscar category campaigns are literally handicapped by this year’s nom. By picking Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud’s Persepolis, it therefore makes it tougher for Picturehouse to get behind the best female perf this year in Marion Cotillard’s La Vie en Rose (La Môme). Her impeccable performance as the tragic French singer serves as a blow to her chances of picking up Oscar for Best Actress. While I stand by Persepolis as the “better” film when you consider La Vie En Rose, if I’d be the folks over at Miramax I’d be peeved. »

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European Film Academy unveils noms

5 September 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

COLOGNE, Germany -- Cristian Mungiu's Palme d'Or-winning abortion drama 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, Paul Verhoeven's WWII thriller Black Book and Sam Garbarski's dark comedy Irina Palm are among the titles the European Film Academy has selected in its initial list of nominees for this year's European Film Prize.

The 1,800 members of the EFA will use the list of 42 films to select the official nominees in seven main categories. The nominations will be announced Nov. 3 at the Sevilla Film Festival.

The 2007 EFA long list is a typical catch-all of the critically acclaimed and/or financially successful European productions of the past year.

Opulent big-budget productions including Olivier Dahan's Edith Piaf biography La Vie en Rose and Tom Tykwer's literary adaptation Perfume: The Story of a Murderer butt up against art house fare exemplified by Austrian director Ulrich Seidl's Import/Export or The Banishment from Russian director Andrei Zvyagintsev.

Unlike in previous years, there is no consensus frontrunner, despite the presence of Oscar winners The Queen and The Last King of Scotland in the nominations list.

And in another departure, no one European country dominates the nominations. No nation, including France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the U.K. -- which produce the bulk of films in Europe -- has more than three films in the nominations list.

Another interesting development is the rise of Central and Eastern Europe. Some of the most talked-about films come from the EU's newest members, including Mungiu's 4 Months, Serbian thriller The Trap by director Srdan Golubovic and Jiri Menzel's Czech-language drama I Served the King of England.

The winners of the 20th annual European Film Awards will be announced Dec. 1 in Berlin.

»

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Constantin pins hopes on second half

24 August 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

COLOGNE, Germany -- Stronger business on the TV service production side made up for a downturn in theatrical revenue at leading German production/distribution indie Constantin Film.

Constantin's theatrical revenue slipped to €8.6 million ($11.6 million) in the first half of 2007 from €11 million over the same period last year. The bulk of theatrical sales came from just a handful of titles: German-language comedies Heavy Weights and Neues vom Wixxer, children's film The Wild Chicks and Love and French-language acquisition La Vie en Rose.

But the theatrical business accounted for only 7% of Constantin's €124 million ($167 million) in first-half revenue, a figure even with last year's.

The bulk of Constantin's business is now in television. Constantin's TV service production arm booked €73.9 million ($99.8 million) in revenue for the first half, 60% of the company's total and up slightly from €71.4 million in first-half 2006. Constantin earned another €12.9 million ($17.4 million) from the licensing of TV rights for its films to German channels.

Home video sales at Constantin also were strong, up a staggering 70%, to €22.1 million ($29.8 million). »

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Hollywood fest breakthrough award to Cotillard

27 June 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Marion Cotillard has been chosen to receive the Hollywood Film Festival's Hollywood Breakthrough Actress of the Year Award at the fest's annual awards ceremony Oct. 22 at the Beverly Hilton.

Cotillard stars in Olivier Dahan's La vie en rose, the Picturehouse release in which she plays French chanteuse Edith Piaf.

"Her superb performance in 'La vie en rose' must be recognized and enjoyed by both the established industry and the public at large," the fest's executive director Carlos de Abreu said.

The French actress also recently appeared in Ridley Scott's A Good Year, starring Russell Crowe. In 2005, she received the Cesar Award for best supporting actress for her role in Jean-Pierre Jeunet's A Very Long Engagement. She also earned Cesar noms for 1998's Taxi and 2001's Les Jolies Choses.

The actress will next appear in Jean-Francois Richet's L'Ennemi public no. 1 (Public Enemy No. 1).

The 2007 annual Hollywood Film Festival is set for Oct. 16-22 at the ArcLight Cinemas in Hollywood. »

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Brühl & Cotillard Win Acting Awards in Seattle

19 June 2007 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Daniel Brühl and Marion Cotillard won the audience prizes for Best Actor and Best Actress respectively at the Seattle Film Festival in Washington this past weekend. Bruhl was honored for his role in Salvador, while Cotillard's performance as singer Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose was celebrated. Elsewhere, the audience awards for Best Film went to Outsourced, directed by John Jeffcoat, while Best Director went to Daniel Waters for Sex And Death 101. Among the juried awards were the Grand Jury Prize for Best New American Film, which was won by Jeff Nichols' Shotgun Stories. »

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Interview: Olivier Dahan

5 June 2007 | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

- Edith Piaf led an tumultoous life filled with music, drama, fame and notoriety. It only makes sense that when director Olivier Dahan was browsing pictures of the late singer in a bookstore, that he immediately knew she had to be his next project. Three years later hit theaters in France as La Môme (in English means 'the kid') and on June 8th the film will open stateside as La Vie en Rose. The film has already raised much critical acclaim throughout the festival circuit and garnered a huge box office reception in France.   The film moves back and forth through time but basically follows Edith from her sickly childhood in a brothel, to getting gigs in a Mafioso nightclub, to her finally being noticed, to recording albums and performing plays around the world. Unfortunately, her life was marred by a great deal of tragedy and addiction, which forced her into even poorer health. »

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'Mediocre movies' hurt Kinepolis boxoffice

14 April 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

BRUSSELS -- European cinema chain Kinepolis Group on Friday reported a 6% drop in attendance for the first quarter of this year, blaming it on "the mediocre range of films on offer during this period."

The group said that the top five movies from the January to March period -- Night at the Museum, Taxi 4, Blood Diamond, The Departed and La Mome -- compared poorly with the boxoffice hits from the same period last year. Those films included The Chronicles of Narnia, King Kong, Munich, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" and Les Bronzes 3.

The three-month period saw the group sell 5.7 million tickets to its cinema complexes, off 4% from the 6.1 million that walked through the turnstiles from January to March 2006. However, the latest figures include new complexes in Bruges and Poland so, on a comparative basis, the numbers are down 6%.

The results come a month after Kinepolis reported net profits of €14.6 million ($19.1 million) in 2006, up 80% from its €8.1 million ($10.6 million) profit in 2005.

Kinepolis, launched in 1997, has more than 300 screens in 22 cinema complexes in Belgium, France, Spain, Poland and Switzerland and employs more than 1,900 people. »

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'Door' opens 50th S.F. fest

4 April 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Emanuele Crialese's The Golden Door, an account of a Sicilian family coming to America at the turn of the last century, will serve as the opening-night film of the San Francisco International Film Festival, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

The fest, which runs April 26-May 10, will screen 200 films from 54 countries and present three world premieres.

Tom DiCillo's satiric comedy Delirious, starring Steve Buscemi, has been slated as the Centerpiece film, while the closing-night attraction will be Oliver Dahan's Edith Piaf biopic La vie en rose, starring Marion Cotillard.

"A golden anniversary comes around only once in an organization's lifetime," San Francisco Film Society executive director Graham Leggat said Tuesday in unveiling the lineup. "And we intend to take full advantage of this remarkable occasion."

Honorees at the annual black-tie Film Society Awards Night, set for May 3 at the Westin St. Francis Hotel, include Spike Lee, recipient of the Directing Award »

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French filmgoers get spring fever

20 March 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

PARIS -- French filmgoers have spring fever, as over 1.2 million cinephiles headed to Gallic movie theaters on Sunday, the first day of the country's 8th annual discount cinema fest, the Printemps du Cinema.

The event, organized by the FNCF, France's national cinema foundation, had its highest attendance ever, with an 8% increase from last year.

For three days, the French public can enjoy their favorite films for a reduced ticket price of just €3.50 ($4.65). Zhang Yimou's Curse of the Golden Flower topped the day's box office with 41,366 admissions, a 40.9% increase from the previous day, followed by U.S. comedy Music & Lyrics with 34,361 tickets sold and Gallic thriller Counter Investigation with 19,598.

German Oscar-winner The Lives of Others was a crowd-pleaser with 15,006 tickets sold, and audiences also enjoyed home-grown fare including Edith Piaf epic La Vie en Rose (12,516 admissions), Andre Techine's The Witnesses (11,347 admissions) and Francois Ozon's English-language coming-of-age story Angel (10,056 admissions).

U.S. imports really benefited from the ticket price reduction with attendance for both Breaking and Entering and Freedom Writers increasing over 60% from Saturday to Sunday and A Night at the Museum seeing a 109.1% jump in admissions from the day before. »

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Int'l b.o. numbers add up to '300'

19 March 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

Thanks to smashing bows in five Asian territories plus exceptionally strong holdover-market performances, 300 decisively dominated international boxoffice for the weekend, battling its way to an estimated $15.6 million from about 1,300 screens in 13 markets.

The Warner Bros. International release took the No. 1 spot in each market it played. The fresh territories included South Korea (an estimated $6.3 million in five days from 353 screens), Turkey ($1.5 million from 115 sites), Thailand ($917,000 from 120 spots), Hong Kong ($730,000 from 33 sites for an astonishing $22,121 per-screen average) and India ($582,000 from 161 sites).

The biggest of the holdover markets for director Zack Snyder's rendition of Frank Miller's graphic novel about the Battle of Thermopylae in 480 B.C. is Greece, where the film earned an estimated $2.5 million at 140 screens in its second weekend for a per-screen average of $17,857. The second-weekend tally is exceeded only by 300's record-setting opening weekend in the market. Upcoming this weekend are "300" openings in such major territories as the U.K., France, Italy, Spain and Mexico.

In second place overall for the weekend is another WBI release, Music and Lyrics, which finished first the previous weekend. The romantic comedy starring Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore warbled to an estimated $9.1 million from about 2,900 screens in 46 markets. Its overseas total is $56.6 million. The biggest of the five new markets is France, which saw the film take in an estimated $1.8 million from 350 locations, ranking No. 2 behind local-language La Mome.

Ranking third for the frame is Norbit, the Eddie Murphy comedy from Paramount Pictures International. It grossed an estimated $8.6 million from 2,405 screens in 33 markets to grow its overseas cume to $31 million.

Norbit had a solid Spain opening (an estimated $1.1 million from 234 spots) and a No. 1 bow in the Netherlands ($733,000 from 84 sites). Its strongest market by far remains the U.K., where the comedy ranked first with a weekend estimate of $2.1 million from 362 spots for a cume of $6.9 million. In Germany, the tally was an estimated $1.7 million from 505 screens for a market cume of $4.5 million.

In the fourth spot overall is Ghost Rider, from Sony Pictures Releasing International, which blazed its way to an estimated $7.3 million from 3,635 screens in 56 markets, hiking its overseas gross to $87.5 million. »

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Rosy boxoffice for Dahan's 'La vie en rose'

20 February 2007 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

PARIS -- Olivier Dahan's La vie en rose took in 1.2 million admissions during its first five days in theaters. Gallic distributor TFM saw strong opening-day numbers, with 230,370 admissions at 675 screens. The Edith Piaf biopic starring Marion Cotillard will be released by Picturehouse in the U.S. in June. The film was second to Gerard Krawczyk's cult hit Taxi 4, released by Europacorp, which topped the boxoffice with 1.7 million tickets sold at 867 screens.

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