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I always find it a bit strange when studios pre-screen random clips from upcoming movies, but with the racially insensitive hubbub currently surrounding Ridley Scott’s Exodus: Gods And Kings, any talk about the actual movie could do absolutely no harm. There’s the age old saying that “there is no such thing as bad publicity,” and the worst case scenario after screening some clips only involves a few negative articles running on random entertainment sites – at least people might forget about the race card, right?
I attended the last New York City pre-screening of the Exodus: Gods And Kings footage preview, expecting nothing more than a slew of clips in the vein of Darren Aronofsky’s Noah. Everyone knows the story of Moses, Rhamses, and the ten plagues, and everyone knows actors like Sigourney Weaver and Christian Bale, so what could go wrong when there’s a budget worth millions and millions of dollars? »
- Matt Donato
David Ayer's "Fury" rumbles into theaters today. We've talked to Ayer, we've talked to composer Steven Price and now, one of the stand-outs from the cast, Logan Lerman. Lerman has been carving an interesting path for himself ever since he started in this business as a young boy. He debuted alongside Mel Gibson in 2000's "The Patriot," though most probably sat up and took notice in TV's "Jack & Bobby" or James Mangold's "3:10 to Yuma" remake. He's dabbled in franchise ("Percy Jackson") and sparked on the indie scene ("The Perks of Being a Wallflower"). This year he's in a pair of epic productions from Ayer and Darren Aronofsky ("Noah"). In "Fury," his character is very much the eyes through which the audience experiences the world of the film and he's a great anchor throughout. In "Noah," meanwhile, he's paired with Russell Crowe again after working with him in »
- Kristopher Tapley
The lineup for the daylong gathering at Time Warner Center also includes Q&A seshes with Harvey Weinstein, James Schamus and Jake Gyllenhaal plus a host of panels and mentoring roundtables with industry insiders.
The PGA’s annual confab is expanding with a Gotham edition this year after launching in Los Angeles in 2010.
- Variety Staff
The series of clips shown went from massive battles to small, intimate character moments that really tried to give you a sense of the grand scale the film is trying to work on as well as the personal story it’s trying to tell beneath it. Bible stories seem to be the new avenue for filmmakers to go down these days, and though Darren Aronofsky’s Noah left a little to be desired it looks like Ridley Scott is embracing his usual overblown sword and sandals method to tell this timeless biblical tale of Moses and Ramses.
- Sean Hutchinson
The Producers Guild of America named director Darren Aronofsky and producer Scott Franklin as featured speakers at the inaugural Produced By: New York conference on Oct. 25 at the Time Warner Center. See photos: Inside TheWrap's Sundance Industry Panel (Photos) The discussion with the filmmaker behind “Noah” and “Black Swan” will be led by moderator PGA President Gary Lucchesi. The conference schedule also added Jon Kilik (“The Hunger Games” “Foxcatcher”) to its roster of panelists. Also read: ‘Noah’ Directors on Transcending Their $300 Budget: TheWrap's Shortlist Quickie The schedule already has several big names from Hollywood, including Jake Gyllenhaal, James Schamus, Harvey Weinstein, »
- Gina Hall
The Producers Guild has set Noah and Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky and his Protozoa partner Scott Franklin to speak at the first Produced By: New York conference on October 25 at the Time Warner Center in NYC. Others on the roster are Jon Kilik, Jake Gyllenhaal, James Schamus, Harvey Weinstein, Donna Gigliotti, Mark Gordon, Hawk Koch, Jenni Konner, Lydia Dean Pilcher, Peter Saraf, Morgan Spurlock and Terence Winter.
- Mike Fleming Jr
Darren Aronofsky and producer Scott Franklin, principals of the production company Protozoa Pictures, have been added as featured speakers at the inaugural Produced By: New York conference. The conference, taking place Saturday, Oct. 25, at the Time Warner Center in NYC, has also added The Hunger Games and Foxcatcher producer Jon Kilik to the roster of panelists. PGA president Gary Lucchesi will lead the discussion with Aronofsky and Franklin, whose latest film, Noah, starring Russell Crowe, earned $359.2 million worldwide. The event, featuring 12 full conference sessions and panel discussions, will also include previously announced guests Jake Gyllenhaal, James
- Rebecca Ford
Selma, the story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic struggle to secure voting rights for African-Americans, has confirmed a 6th February release date for 2015. Next year also marks the historic 50th anniversary of this pivotal moment in the Us Civil Rights Movement.
With a great cast that includes the ever-impressive Brit actor David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King Jr., the film tracks a dangerous and terrifying three month campaign led by Martin Luther King Jr. which culminated in the epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. The campaign galvanized American public opinion and persuaded President Johnson to introduce the Voting Rights Act, protecting Africa-Americans’ right to vote.
Directed by the Middle Of Nowhere’s Ava DuVernay, the film co-stars Tom Wilkinson as President Lyndon B. Johnson; Carmen Ejogo as Coretta King; Tim Roth as Governor George Wallace; and Oprah Winfrey as Annie Lee Cooper.
Selma’s screenplay was »
- Dan Bullock
By Anjelica Oswald
The best original song category at the Oscars is a difficult category to find patterns in. The number of best original song nominees can vary each year, and since 2000, the genre of the winning song has ranged from rap to show tunes.
The official Oscar rules state that the top five songs will receive nominations, but if there are 25 or fewer qualified works submitted, nominations may be limited to three, and if there are nine or fewer, than no awards may be given that year.
When it comes down to picking nominees, the Music Branch Executive Committee picks the top choices for the music categories (including original score and original musical). The winner is chosen by all Academy members.
- Anjelica Oswald
Kris Tapley asks if Paramount will be able to bring spring release "Noah" starring Russell Crowe back into the Oscar discussion. They are especially hoping to rekindle voter support for the below-the-line technical categories of the Darren Aronofsky film. Composer Clint Mansell and songwriter Patti Smith have been making the circuits along with cinematographer Matthew Libatique and sound mixers Craig Henighan and Skip Lievsay. The studio has had a recent miss with "Men Women and Children" but also has "Interstellar," "Selma," "The Gambler," and "Top Five" in the mix. HitFix -Break- Join the lively film and TV discussions going on right now in the Gold Derby message boards Sasha Stone discusses why the Oscar race discussions are continually "dominated by men." Are the female-related films truly not "good enough" and is there "always something wrong with them"? She says that movies »
It's always difficult to bring a spring release back around for the Oscar season, no matter the film's size or impact. But in a year like 2014 — which seems rather atypical as subversive comedy, American auteurs and blockbuster craftsmen all duke it out for room alongside the traditional, baitier offerings — anything can slip on through. That's what Paramount is surely hoping for with Darren Aronofsky's "Noah." The studio has its hands full at the moment, though. Dealing with an embarrassing release for Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children," working hard to benefit a new relationship with a powerful, talented director in Christopher Nolan (whose "Interstellar" releases right in the middle of the awards circuit), prepping the release of newly acquired "Top Five" from Chris Rock, setting strategy for Rupert Wyatt's "The Gambler" and Ava DuVernay's "Selma" — it's easy to see why working on campaigns for early-year releases might not be a high priority. »
- Kristopher Tapley
Let's pretend we've been off air for a few month and Tfe's fall season starts tomorrow, 8 Am Est with a special Tuesday Top Ten day, reviews as Lists, or Lists as Lists, or Picture Lists or whatever -- top tens all day. Throw some confetti (Tfe has, strangely, a devout but possessive following. Don't keep things you love to yourself: share, tweet and like your favorites! Donate a cup of coffee a month - see sidebar)
Whenever I announce a new season, I like to illustrate with ruthless programmer Diana Christensen even though she'd immediately cancel us for our ratings share and low episode counts
Tuesdays Top Ten | Curio | New Or Returning Series
Wednesdays New Or Returning | A Year With Kate - only 11 episodes left!
Thursdays Ahs: Freakshow | New Or Returning | Tim's Toons
Fridays Posterized | Michael's Weekly Review
Saturdays Meet »
- NATHANIEL R
Clint Mansell is a long ways away from his days as frontman of alt. rock band Pop Will Eat Itself. Since his first stab at it on Darren Aronofsky's "Pi," he has forged a singular career as a film composer, working on productions as varied as "Knockaround Guys," "Sahara," Moon" and "Stoker." But it seems whenever he comes back to the table with Aronofsky, that's when something magical happens. Mansell has worked with Aronofsky on each of the director's features — "Pi," "Requiem for a Dream," "The Fountain," "The Wrestler," "Black Swan" and now "Noah" — and you can tell talking to Mansell that the creative rapport they've managed to sustain is rare. Mansell is pretty straight-forward about what he wants out of this gig, and Aronofsky has always come across the same way. So it certainly makes sense that they would keep coming back to the well. We talked for »
- Kristopher Tapley
The Hollywood Music in Media Awards (HMMAs) have announced the nominees in the Visual Media categories.
Showcasing the best and brightest in musical creation for visual media, the 5th Annual Hollywood Music in Media Awards (HMMAs) will be held at The Fonda Theater in Hollywood on Tuesday, November 4, 2014.
The 2014 HMMAs welcome back celebrity hosts including Oscar nominated actor Eric Roberts, former Matchbox 20 member Adam Gaynor, acclaimed Director/Writer/Producer Andy Fickman and Earth, Wind & Fire’s Verdine White. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Education Through Music – Los Angeles (Etmla). Honorees, performers, and special guests to be announced.
The field of entrants were narrowed down to final nominees by the Hmma advisory board and selection committee. The winners will be voted upon by music-media industry professionals comprised of select members of the Society of Composers and Lyricists (Scl), The Television Academy, the AMPAS Music Branch, Naras, performing rights organizations, »
- Michelle McCue
The Best Visual Effects is often the place where the Academy recognizes what it is frequently accused of avoiding elsewhere: mainstream spectacle. Blockbusters reign in this category, at least at the nomination stage, with fantasy films, franchises and other money-makers always featuring prominently. The branch also has its specific fetishes, at least historically (talking animals immediately jumps to mind), though, in recent years, it has seemingly been all 3D, all the time. There are dozens if not hundreds of individuals who work on a film’s visual effects but the nomination can ultimately be shared by only four of them – usually the special effects supervisor and three visual effects supervisors. While some names are "favorites" of the branch (John Frazier, Joe Letteri), this branch is hardly the most insular and tends to be more concerned about the work on display. We will receive a hint of the way they are »
- Gerard Kennedy
Patti Smith loves movies. A few days before we chatted about her Best Original Song contender "Mercy Is" from Darren Aronofsky's "Noah," Smith and her friend Ralph Fiennes took in two screenings at the currently running New York Film Festival: Mike Leigh's "Mr. Turner" followed by Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice." The double feature was "quite a juxtaposition," she says with a laugh (Smith enjoyed both films). And it's her taste for movie-going that landed her a job writing the haunting melody that underscores Aronofsky's film. The two first met when they bumped into each other at the Venice Film Festival, catching one another at films and chatting between screenings. Three years later, their off-the-cuff conversation is now an Oscar-eligible single. "Mercy Is" is not the first of Smith's songs to feature in a Hollywood picture, but it is her first original writing for screen. Below, she »
- Matt Patches
By Scot Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter
On Tuesday, I met up in New York with Patti Smith, the iconic singer-songwriter-activist, for a long conversation about her life, career and latest work. Smith, who is 67 and a year away from the 40th anniversary of her debut album Horses, is still going strong — writing, performing and speaking out about social issues that are important to her. She is also, for the first time in her career, in contention for a best original song Oscar nomination.
Many of the songs for which Smith has been known and loved for generations — including “Because the Night,” “The People Have the Power” and “Gloria” — have been sampled in movies over the years. But those songs were already in circulation when they showed up on film soundtracks. This year, for the first time, Smith wrote a song specifically for a movie: “Mercy Is,” a haunting lullaby that »
- Anjelica Oswald
Somehow over the years the Hollywood Music in Media Awards have escaped me. The event's fifth annual slate of nominees were announced today, and it's a pretty standard assortment of names we've been considering at the forefront of this year's Best Original Score Oscar race, from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross to Hans Zimmer to the ubiquitous Alexandre Desplat. The nominees were chosen by an "Hmma advisory board and selection committee," and winners will be voted upon by "music-media industry professionals comprised of select members of the Society of Composers and Lyricists, The Television Academy, the AMPAS Music Branch, Naras, performing rights organizations, film music journalists and music executives," according to the press release. You might raise your eyebrow at something like "Interstellar" being on here when it hasn't been screened for these purposes (or much at all, for that matter). The nominations are also based on hearing music via »
- Kristopher Tapley
The walruses have washed up on a beach in Alaska. There is nowhere else for them to go. It will become one of the most iconic images of our planet »
- Sasha Stone
For the second time, Brit comedian Rob Brydon ("The Trip to Italy") will host. BBC America will broadcast the event for the third year on Sunday, November 2, 2014 at 9pm Et. BAFTA La Chairman Nigel Daly said of Louis-Dreyfus: “Her ability to create iconic, enduring characters like Selina Meyer, Christine Campbell, Elaine Benes, and her most recent role as Eva in 'Enough Said,' is such that it is impossible to imagine the last 20 years of comedy without her." Louis-Dreyfus is guaranteed to be hugely entertaining. Also on stage this year will be would-be Oscar contenders, per usual, "The Judge" star Robert Downey Jr. (the Stanley Kubrick Britannia Award for Excellence in Film) and "Mr. Turner" writer-director Mike Leigh (the John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence in Directing). Other honorees are "Noah" star Emma Watson (British Artist of the Year); "Begin Again" and "The Normal Heart" star »
- Anne Thompson
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