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A24 Films has given us an exclusive look at the new A Most Violent Year TV Spot in support of writer/director J.C. Chandor’s (All Is Lost) upcoming crime drama. It features a new song from the band Sbtrkt as well as more hints at the movie's icy menace. The film is set in New York in 1981 and revolves around “an American immigrant (Oscar Isaac) and his wife (Jessica Chastain) trying to expand their business as violence and corruption threaten to destroy all they have built.” I unfortunately missed my screening of this due to weather so I'm looking forward to plunking down a few bucks to see it next week. Chandor, Issac and Chastain should make for a pretty great trio. Check out the new TV Spot for A Most Violent Year after the jump. The film also stars Alessandro Nivola and Albert Brooks. A Most Violent Year »
- Evan Dickson
Morten Tyldum makes his English-language directing debut with “The Imitation Game,” about British genius Alan Turing breaking the Nazis’ Enigma code. He and his production team worked under difficult circumstances because of the subject matter. Tyldum said, “Iwanted to shoot some of it where it happened, with the real locations, real props. We were always reminded of the importance of what we were doing: Both in front of and behind the camera, everybody wanted to do justice to Alan Turing. We didn’t have craft service, didn’t have proper heating. But it was a tremendous experience because we became like a family on a mission.”
Cinematography, Oscar Faura
“I wanted the film to have a classic feel to it, an epic story style, yet there are a lot of interiors. I saw ‘The Impossible’ and knew I had found my d.p. He lights so beautifully. He has a poetic sense of realism, »
- Tim Gray
Kathryn Bigelow is an important filmmaker because she refuses to dance around the facts surrounding her films, and because she often brings up important questions that nobody else wants to ask. The storm of controversy surrounding the depictions of torture in 2012’s “Zero Dark Thirty” were outsized compared to the intelligent, subdued film that actually spawned the conversation. And yet something about Bigelow’s Oscar-nominated film nonetheless struck a nerve in our national consciousness, one that perhaps needed to be struck. She has a gift for making real-life procedure riveting, and yet it has not softened the laser-like focus of her attention to social issues of mounting importance. Recently, Bigelow collaborated with screenwriter Scott Z. Burns (“Contagion,” Guy Ritchie’s upcoming “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”) on a short animated PSA entitled “Last Days” (watch it here), which addresses the unjust and inhumane world of elephant poaching. »
- Nicholas Laskin
Voting for Oscar nominations runs Dec. 29-Jan. 8, and some folks may think it’s simply a matter of filling out a ballot. It is and it isn’t.
There are 17 branches in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, where voters submit nominations in their own category (directors nominate directors, and so on) and everybody nominates best picture. But it can be tricky. So here are some tips before voting.
1. Only one of your choices will be counted. The Oscar ballot asks you to enter up to 10 best picture favorites, and five in most other categories. The Academy and PricewaterhouseCoopers use preferential voting, a system designed to ensure that every voice is heard. But that means heard once. (The system is designed for elections where there is more than one “winner,” such as multiple Oscar nominees — as opposed to political balloting, designed to elect a sole winner.) So under preferential voting, »
- Tim Gray
Exclusive: Sony’s surprise decision to double back and release The Interview in limited fashion on Christmas Day has exhibitors in a rage, and it sure looks like it is going to take them a long time to get over it. After Sony canceled the December 25 bow, pulled its advertising and began scrapping billboards, exhibitors filled the screens with other pictures. Led by Sony chief Michael Lynton, the studio — and President Obama — are waving the pompoms and making the release of this movie, on probably one-tenth of the original screen count, sound like a victory against terrorism. It’s a peculiar stance. Most feel that Sony’s handling of this crisis has been schizophrenic all the way through, and while some might patronize The Interview as their testament they will stand up to terrorism, censorship and evil, what is going to happen when they realize it’s a silly comedy »
- David Robb and Mike Fleming Jr
The sound category this awards season is highlighted by different war zones ("Fury," "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," "Godzilla"), a gut-wrenching space adventure ("Interstellar"), and a bizarre fairy tale musical mash-up ("Into the Woods"). What they have in common is a sense of the natural and a sonic intensity. 1. The sound of World War II tank warfare has never been as real or as intense as in David Ayer's "Fury." Sound designer Paul Ottosson ("Zero Dark Thirty") was totally in his element, recording sounds of the Nazi Tiger tank for the first time onscreen and getting the low-end of the shockwaves as well as the ricochets and shell hits just right. But the recording details extended to the interior machinery of the tanks and the authentic radio transmissions. Yet the sound designer was amazed at the high-tech Tiger -- it was almost like a tricked out sports car. »
- Bill Desowitz
Charlie Cox is Daredevil and Krysten Ritter is Jessica Jones. Now we have the third of the four members of Marvel / Netflix's Defenders crossover event series: Mike Colter will star as Luke Cage, sometimes known as Power Man. You call him names and he sits and grins, 'cause everyone else is just a sucker to him. This is breakout role for Colter, who's been plugging away in movies and TV for a good decade. On the small screen he's been in the usual suspects like ER, the various Law & Orders, American Horror Story and The Good Wife. In the cinema you might have caught him in Million Dollar Baby, Salt, Men In Black 3 or Zero Dark Thirty. This year he's been Jameson Locke in the X-Box Live series Halo: Nightfall. He's about to blow up rather bigger.Cage will first appear in A.K.A. Jessica Jones before his own series airs. »
Uncharted is a film that's taken a surprisingly long time to make its way into production. Based on the smash hit Sony Playstation franchise, it has an action-packed story that lends itself perfectly to Hollywood blockbuster filmmaking. It follows treasure hunter Nathan Drake, his mentor "Sully," and a host of secondary characters, as they travel the world to uncover historical mysteries. The scripts for the games have a balance of humor, mystery, action, and intrigue as Drake tends to get into all kinds of trouble while on his assignments. The franchise could be a hit on the level of the National Treasure films or, in the right hands, could be this generation's Indiana Jones.
At one point, David O. Russell- the director who's been nominated for five Academy Awards, was set to bring the franchise to the big screen. At the time, he had gotten a commitment from Mark Wahlberg to star as Drake. »
- Mario-Francisco Robles
Though the Uncharted film has been in development for several years now, a leading man has still not been cast. One name, however, has flirted with the project almost ever since its inception, and it seems that to this day, he remains the frontrunner.
According to leaked Sony emails, the studio is still keen on having Mark Wahlberg star in the Seth Gordon-directed film, which will be scripted by Mark Boal (Zero Dark Thirty). Apparently, the actor met with Gordon back in the summer and things went very well. Nothing has been made official just yet, of course, but Wahlberg did say that he’d be available to shoot in 2015 and seemed eager to sign on.
It’s important to note that this was several months ago, and who knows what has changed between then and now. Obviously Wahlberg is a busy guy, and since the summer, several more »
- Matt Joseph
While Uncharted is one of those movies we've heard about for years, it seems like Sony is finally getting serious about bringing this video game to the big screen. The studio has set a June 2016 release date, and the adaptation even has a writer and director attached. But it doesn't yet have a leading man. That may be changing soon, as it is rumored that Mark Wahlberg is still being eyed as Nathan 'Nate' Drake.
It's been four years since Mark Wahlberg first confirmed that he was playing Nathan Drake in an Uncharted movie. At the time, he was set to reunite with his I Heart Huckabees and The Fighter director David O. Russell, who was both writing and set to helm this action adventure movie, said to be in the same vein as Indiana Jones. But David O. Russell dropped out in 2011. Mark Wahlberg left the project soon there after. »
Uncharted has been in development for a number of years now, and the fact that the critically acclaimed video game series still hasn't received the big screen treatment is baffling to say the least. Sony have certainly tried, and a number of writers and directors have been attached at one point or another. The latest is Horrible Bosses helmer Seth Gordon, while franchise fan and Zero Dark Thirty scribe Mark Boal is writing the latest draft of the script. Who will star in the movie? We've seen an email between Sony execs including Amy Pascal and Jonathin Kadin which reveal that back in June a meeting took place between Gordon and Mark Wahlberg (who was attached to the project a number of years ago) which apparently went very well. They talked in great detail about the version of the script which existed at that time, and the actor was agreeable »
Today we have the first look at Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty) in the upcoming "Crimson Peak" horror film, which is directed by Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim). Check out the photo below, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at Tom Hiddleston (Thor). Plot: Set in the 19th century, the film stars Mia Wasikowska as a new bride who discovers that her husband (Hiddleston) is not who he appears to be. Chastain plays her sister-in-law. "Crimson Peak" also stars Charlie Hunnam and Doug Jones. It's set to hit theaters on October 16th, 2015. Photos: (click to enlarge) »
As threats of violence imperiled the Christmas debut of “The Interview,” Canadian exhibitor Cineplex and other U.S. chains urged Sony Pictures earlier this week to consider opening the comedy in roughly 20 theaters before releasing it more broadly.
They believed the limited-release strategy could have helped the studio and theater owners assess if the hackers who evoked the possibility of a 9/11-style attack were serious about following through on their warnings. But Sony rejected that proposal, according to two individuals with knowledge of the talks.
The studio had used a similar strategy to release “Zero Dark Thirty” in 2012. The film about the successful operation to kill Osama bin Laden courted controversy, and there were concerns that it might inspire some kind of terrorist action. The film was originally slated to open on Dec. 19, but Sony delayed the wide release of “Zero Dark Thirty” until Jan. 11, opening the film in New York and Los Angeles instead. »
- Brent Lang
Although Sony Pictures continues to point the finger at theater owners for its decision to cancel The Interview’s Dec. 25 release, there were alternative distribution strategies, like the type of platform release the studio used for 2012’s Zero Dark Thirty, that the studio could have used, sources familiar with the situation tell The Hollywood Reporter. While the country’s largest theater circuits — Regal Entertainment, AMC Entertainment, Cinemark and Carmike — separately all decided by Dec. 17 not to show the film, following the escalating threats of violence issued by the hackers, there were other theaters, like the Austin, Texas-based Alamo
- Gregg Kilday
Two years ago, William Goldenberg took the stage of the Dolby Theater on Oscar night as the Oscar winner for Best Film Editing on "Argo." This year, he is firmly back in the race, having cut Morten Tyldum's "The Imitation Game." I recently spoke to Goldenberg about the film, his approach to editing and his career to date. HitFix: When did you come aboard the film? William Goldenberg: I was offered the film probably six months before the movie was going to start shooting but I was booked. I had all of these people calling me saying I had to do it but I said I couldn't do it. But I became available and luckily for me they hadn't hired an editor yet and I was thrilled that they hadn't! How would you describe your approach on a macro level? My main goal when I'm cutting is always story. »
- Gerard Kennedy
Though Jessica Chastain has played some pretty fierce female characters throughout her career, according to the Oscar-nominated actress, women are definitely being under-represented in film.
In a new interview with Indiewire, the 37-year-old Chastain -- who proudly calls herself a feminist -- says she's just been "lucky" to have the opportunity to play such strong female roles in films like Zero Dark Thirty and Interstellar.
"When I speak out I'm not doing it from a selfish place because I get incredible opportunities," she says. "I'm speaking out as an audience member who is going to the cinema and noticing there's a problem here because I don't see women being represented. I don't see Asian-American actresses begin represented. I don't see women in their 60s being represented in film. ... There are these really fantastic actresses out there, but there are so few opportunities."
Photos: Who Got Hired in Hollywood?
She points out the lack of female leads when it »
When Jennifer 8 Lee was prepping for her 2008 interview on The Colbert Report, she didn't know what to expect. A friend who wrote for The Daily Show gave the author some good advice: Don't try to out-funny Stephen Colbert; "just be calm and roll with the weirdness." Over the past nine years, Colbert—in character as a fact-free conservative pundit—has commanded a powerful perch at his round interview table, keeping guests off kilter four nights a week. In especially brilliant moments, he has asked tougher questions than real journalists. After all, Colbert's the guy who asked Robert F. Kennedy Jr. »
- Dory Devlin
Update: Sony has canceled the December 25th theatrical release of The Interview, according to Variety, citing several major theatrical chains' decisions not to screen the film as the reason. "We respect and understand our partners' decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theatergoers," the company said in a statement.
Seth Rogen and James Franco's assassination-plot romp The Interview has become the most controversial movie in decades. Following terror threats on movie theaters planning on showing the film, Sony, the studio behind it, »
Amy Pascal has led Sony Pictures for more than a decade. She’s endured activist investor Daniel Loeb’s calls for her head and the twin disasters that were “After Earth” and “White House Down.” She’s experienced the highs of the first “Spider-Man” trilogy and the lows of a Senate investigation into the torture depictions in “Zero Dark Thirty.” She’s developed a reputation for her shrewd creative sensibility, and has surprised people by her willingness to dispatch key lieutenants when it was expedient. She’s a survivor.
The hourglass may be running out on her time at Sony, however. The devastating hack attack has exposed emails that could jeopardize Pascal’s relationships with key talent throughout the industry. Most damaging from a public relations perspective is a series of racially-charged jokes Pascal made with producer Scott Rudin, during which the two suggested that President Barack Obama must enjoy “Django Unchained, »
- Brent Lang
Bashing “liberal Hollywood” and out-of-touch celebrities has become a favorite sport among conservatives. But those seeking to defend the Bush administration in light of the recent Torture Report — and that’s mostly conservatives — could hardly have had a better ally than the images of torture in TV and movies, particularly in the face of “ticking-bomb scenarios.”
Fox’s “24,” naturally comes to mind, and the movie “Zero Dark Thirty,” which was criticized for its depiction of torture as a likely asset in locating Osama Bin Laden. Surprisingly, director Kathryn Bigelow seemed tongue-tied when Jon Stewart benignly asked her about the film during a recent appearance promoting another project in the wake of the Torture Report’s conclusions.
The practice has been employed in other series as well – such as “Sons of Anarchy,” “Scandal” and “Homeland” – and countless movies, with the bad guys using it (see various Quentin Tarantino films) as well as the ostensible good guys. »
- Brian Lowry
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