16 items from 2014
The Academy has announced the new class of invited members for 2014 and, as is typical, many of which are among last year's nominees, which includes Barkhad Abdi, Michael Fassbender, Sally Hawkins, Mads Mikkelsen, Lupita Nyong'o and June Squibb in the Actors branch not to mention curious additions such as Josh Hutcherson, Rob Riggle and Jason Statham, but, okay. The Directors branch adds Jay and Mark Duplass along with Jean-Marc Vallee, Denis Villeneuve and Thomas Vinterberg. I didn't do an immediate tally of male to female additions or other demographics, but at first glance it seems to be a wide spread batch of new additions on all fronts. The Academy is also clearly attempting to aggressively bump up the demographics as this is the second year in a row where they have added a large number of new members, well over the average of 133 new members from 2004 to 2012. As far as »
- Brad Brevet
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is extending invitations to join the organization to 271 artists and executives who have distinguished themselves by their contributions to theatrical motion pictures.
Those who accept the invitations will be the only additions to the Academy’s membership in 2014.
“This year’s class of invitees represents some of the most talented, creative and passionate filmmakers working in our industry today,” said Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “Their contributions to film have entertained audiences around the world, and we are proud to welcome them to the Academy.”
The 2014 invitees are:
- Michelle McCue
Michael Fassbender and Lupita Nyong’o of 12 Years a Slave were two of the 271 artists and industry leaders invited to become members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which determines nominations and winners at the annual Oscars. The entire list of Academy membership—which numbers about 6,000—isn’t public information so the annual invitation list is often the best indication of the artists involved in the prestigious awards process. It’s worth noting that invitations need to be accepted in order for artists to become members; some artists, like two-time Best Actor winner Sean Penn, have declined membership over the years. »
- Jeff Labrecque
Pop quiz: What do Chris Rock, Claire Denis, Eddie Vedder and Josh Hutcherson all have in common? Answer: They could all be Oscar voters very soon. The annual Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences invitation list always makes for interesting reading, shedding light on just how large and far-reaching the group's membership is -- or could be, depending on who accepts their invitations. This year, 271 individuals have been asked to join AMPAS, meaning every one of them could contribute to next year's Academy Awards balloting -- and it's as diverse a list as they've ever assembled. Think the Academy consists entirely of fusty retired white dudes? Not if recent Best Original Song nominee Pharrell Williams takes them up on their offer. Think it's all just a Hollywood insiders' game? Not if French arthouse titans Chantal Akerman and Olivier Assayas join the party. It's a list that subverts expectation at every turn. »
- Guy Lodge
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has invited 271 individuals to become members, with the list reflecting the org’s determination to bring more diversity to its ranks.
Every year, the list of invitations includes several recent Oscar nominees. That’s true this year as well, with letters going out Wednesday to a cross-section of people including 2013 contenders Barkhad Abdi, Lupita Nyong’o, Hayao Miyazaki, Pharrell Williams, Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, plus such creatives as Megan Ellison, Chris Rock, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Steve Coogan, Jason Statham, William Chang Suk Ping, Joan Sobel, Tracey Seaward, Mads Mikkelsen and Chantal Akerman.
Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs told Variety Thursday, “This is a continuation of an initiative to bring in new voices. Filmmaking has gotten more diverse, and audiences have been responding. There are terrific filmmakers around the world at the top of their game and we want to recognize them and bring them into the Academy. »
- Tim Gray
It’s been twenty years since Jim Carrey had his annus mirabilis in 1994 when, seemingly in a matter of hours, he became the biggest comedy star in the world. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective was followed by The Mask, before he rounded up the year very nicely with Dumb & Dumber, a film that could trouble Airplane! for a place at the top of the comedy tree.
Carrey became the biggest name in comedy for over ten years, but the two fellows responsible for Dumb & Dumber didn’t fare too badly either. The Farrelly Brothers’ follow-up, Kingpin (1996), was even funnier, though the box office returns were diminished. Their audience returned in droves in 1998 for their biggest hit, There’s Something About Mary, which made superstars out of Cameron Diaz and Ben Stiller, and made men across the world take extra care when pulling up the zip on their trousers.
In recent years, »
- Cai Ross
Reactions from the talent behind films eviscerated on MST3k have varied (it could be a joke, but the crew claims Joe Don Baker of Mitchell fame wants to take a swing at them), though not as much as fans of the films proper. A famous, though unverified, story has Dennis Miller flying the cast to a filming of his HBO show only to scream at them for having their way with Marooned! In light of the recent announcement that creator Joel Hodgson wants to reboot the cult favourite, here’s a look at a few episodes that may not have been playing fair.
5. Revenge of The Creature (Season 8, Episode 1)
There is a delicate chemistry to enjoying trash on its own merit. Too bad or too good, it can easily throw things off-balance into the oblivion of the unwatchable. Creature upped the stakes of the classic original by bringing it to local beaches and, »
- Kenny Hedges
Today’s film is the 2013 short Crush. The film is written by Rachel Antonoff, who also co-directs the short with Bianca Giaever, and stars Jack Antonoff, Mae Whitman, Jenny Slate, and Gillian Jacobs. Jacobs rose to prominence in the role of Britta Perry in the NBC series Community, and has also been seen in movies such as Helena from the Wedding, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, and Bad Milo. Her newest feature, titled Walk of Shame, opens in limited release in American theatres this weekend.
- Deepayan Sengupta
I feel the need to climb to the top of a mountain and shout at the top of my lungs to watch Legit on Fxx before it falls victim as another show worth your time that couldn’t find its audience in time. It’s smart, edgy, and sweet and comedies like this are few and far between.
Legit isn’t your typical comedy. Standup comedian, Jim Jefferies is trying to do something different, and bring his own sensibilities to the TV comedy realm. “When you’re with your friends,” he explains. “You laugh a little bit, you laugh a little bit, and then something big happens. I think a lot of network sitcoms it’s just laughs per minute. I don’t think they even care how big the laughs are. As long as they can pack so many into that timeline. We have episodes where there’s maybe five, »
- Ernie Estrella
20th Century Fox
You’ve been there. We all have. It’s the middle of winter or it’s a hot August afternoon and seeing a movie is the only fun activity you can do. Unfortunately, when you look at your options, you don’t see anything worthwhile.
Well, what if you have no viable movie options for a month? Or two months? That’s what tends to happen in the months of January and February and there’s a graph that proves this:
This chart was provided by Slate and it proves that February is statistically the worst month to see a movie, according to Rotten Tomatoes. January and August are not too far behind either and it’s easy to understand why: these months are usually the dumping ground for Hollywood’s worst films. When you see a movie get stuck with a January release date, it »
- Ken Guidry
Mitchell began working at Landscape in 2011 as head of feature films and has served as a producer on films like “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone,” “Lucky Number Slevin” and “The Angriest Man in Brooklyn,” which will be distributed later this year. He also worked as a writer and producer of the NBC shows “Kidnapped” and “My Own Worst Enemy.” Mitchell will now oversee Landscape’s film and TV slates, including projects being developed at Warner Bros., Disney, New Regency, HBO, Fox, Wgn, TNT, and USA.
“Tyler’s production savvy and incredible work have helped move Landscape to a new level,” Cooper said in a statement. “In this leadership role he will continue to raise our creative ante.”
Landscape and eOne will focus on »
- Andrea Seikaly
Landscape Entertainment has promoted Tyler Mitchell to Partner and has extended its first-look deal with Entertainment One Television through 2015, the company said today. In his new role, Mitchell will oversee both Landscape’s film and television slates, with projects in active development at Warner Bros., Disney, New Regency, HBO, Fox, Wgn, TNT, and USA. Under their first look deal with eOne Television, Landscape will continue to develop and produce projects targeted primarily for cable. Mitchell joined Landscape in 2011 as Head of Feature Film, working as a producer on several pics including The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, Lucky Number Sleven and most recently The Angriest Man In Brooklyn set for release later this year. Mitchell also has worked in television as both a producer and writer on NBC’s Kidnapped and My Own Worst Enemy. Landscape Entertainment is repped in TV by Wme. »
- THE DEADLINE TEAM
The festival also announced Thursday it will screen Rob Thomas’ “Veronica Mars,” the Kickstarter-funded film that stars Kristen Bell as the TV show’s heroine being pulled back to her hometown to unravel a murder mystery. SXSW, which runs from March 7 to 16, has not set a date for screening “Veronica Mars,” which Warner Bros. has set for a March 14 launch in theaters.
“Jon Favreau’s wonderfully entertaining return to independent filmmaking works beautifully as our 2014 opening night film, with his sharp and funny take on the world of food, »
- Dave McNary
If you held a very large weapon to our head and asked us what our favorite film festival was, we'd probably have to tinkle in our pants. And then we'd answer: the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas. Warmer than Sundance and weirder than Cannes, it exemplifies Austin's easygoing vibe and serious commitment to all sorts of cinema, from genre movies to documentary features and everything in between. It's just the best. And from the looks of the early announcements, this year's festival is going to be as wonderful as ever.
The festival has announced that Jon Favreau's long-awaited return to independent cinema, "Chef," will open the festival on March 7. The movie also stars Favreau as a chef who quits his job at a prominent La eatery and moves to Miami to start up a food truck. In terms of movies that have opened South by Southwest, »
- Drew Taylor
It’s the rise of the machines as romantic dramedy, and the Singularity as romantic tragedy. It’s the nicest, gentlest sci-fi horror film ever. I’m “biast” (pro): love Spike Jonze’s movies
I’m “biast” (con): nothing
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
It’s a familiar story of self-discovery and romance. Theodore is a lonely writer who can’t come to terms with his divorce — he keeps putting off signing the papers — and he’s just not interested in dating again. And then he meets Samantha. Their relationship is strictly platonic at first, but she’s smart, funny, considerate, attuned to his needs… and he falls for her, hard. She has no physical presence, of course, just a sexy Scarlett Johansson voice emanating from the smartphone-slash-supercomputer he carries around (as everyone else does in Theodore’s near-future Los Angeles). Sure, she’s an AI, »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Cast your vote for the Best Flowing Blond Hair on a Man
For too long women have been the ones burdened by the task of keeping society well stocked with flowing, blond hair. Thankfully, in 2013 the big screen supplied a fair few men with long, lustrous, yellow-hued locks. Jim Carrey sported some blond hair with brown roots in The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, while Benedict Cumberbatch's hair was pure platinum in The Fifth Estate. Orlando Bloom's elven hair could have defeated Smaug the dragon on its own, and we're pretty sure Brad Pitt's hair is what saved him from that mass of zombies in World War Z. Finally, we couldn't decide if Chris Hemsworth's hair was better in Rush or in Thor: The Dark World, so we went ahead and nominated him twice. In honor of these well coiffed men, we're going to decide definitively which guy »
- Mandy McAdoo
16 items from 2014
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