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Ghita Loebenstein is gearing up for another year of She Speaks First, the female-focused film series she founded in 2015..
The series, in which screenings of films made by women are followed by conversations about the space women occupy in cinema, most recently presented Athina Rachel Tsangari's Chevalier at Melbourne's Australian Centre for the Moving Image last October..
The Rehearsal is adapted from the novel by Booker Prize—winning Kiwi author Eleanor Catton (The Luminaries). Variety described the film, which premiered last year at Tiff, as "like Fame redone as a good movie"..
- Harry Windsor
With Ben Affleck doing the promotional rounds for his new film Live By Night, we’ve heard him responding to many questions about the status of The Batman, leading to an entire ‘will he, won’t he direct?’ saga.
Well, in an interview with Cineplex, Affleck has been asked about his next outing as Batman in November’s Justice League, during which he talked about the tonal shift we can expect from Zack Snyder’s third Dceu offering.
“Justice League, you probably saw the teaser that came out of Comic-Con; I thought it is nicely emblematic of the kind of minor tone shift and segue in storytelling,” said Affleck. “It’s a little bit lighter, the characters are a little bit more comfortable in themselves, so they can express a wider array of emotions. And there are just more people in it, so it’s more fun. It’s all »
- Gary Collinson
The Australian film-maker Stephan Elliott once jokingly told me that he’d made The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert to bring screen musicals back from the grave into which Xanadu had put them. Yet despite reports of their death, musicals have never gone away, providing the backbone of the movie business in key territories such as India, and regularly flourishing elsewhere across the globe. In 2008, Phyllida Lloyd’s film of the Abba-fest Mamma Mia! became a record-breaking UK hit (paving the way for Sunshine on Leith et al), while stage-to-screen adaptations, from Chicago to Les Misérables, have consistently charmed Oscar voters in America.
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
It’s been shown, on occasion, that audiences will turn out to see a movie about the post-9/11 world: a serious and inquiring drama of war, terrorism, and global culture clash. But even in an era as fraught with instability as this one, will people show up to see a movie that mirrors their economic anxieties? With rare exceptions (like “Up in the Air,” an early Hollywood responder to the 2008 meltdown that was followed by…not very much), the answer is no. That nerve is simply too raw.
Yet I can’t help but believe that a great wrenching drama that brilliantly channeled the collapse of the middle class would have the potential to strike a powerful chord with a mass audience. “Worlds Apart,” a small-scale drama from Greece, is like the baby-steps version of that movie. It interweaves three stories (sort of like “Babel,” though all set in one place — in this case, »
- Owen Gleiberman
MaryAnn’s quick take… A marvel. Funny and exuberant and bittersweet and cliché-busting and unexpected as hell. We are going to need more movies like this one. I’m “biast” (pro): loved Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash, love Gosling and Stone
I’m “biast” (con): nothing
what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
Hopeful yet pragmatic. Fantastical yet down-to-earth. Revolutionary yet traditional. Old-fashioned in the best way and totally modern at the same time. Pure escapist cinematic joy that you don’t need to turn your brain off to get thoroughly lost in. La La Land is a movie to make you fall in love with movies all over again, just when, I suspect, we’re going to be leaning on movies a lot merely to maintain our sanity. This is an instant comfort movie, one that wraps you in its warm embrace and never lets you go. »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Over the past few weeks, La La Land has become a force to be reckoned with. Between its seven Golden Globe wins (and a slew of other accolades) and strong numbers at the box office, the film’s director, Damien Chazelle, has truly outdone himself, a seemingly impossible task seeing as how his previous film, Whiplash, set the bar very high. In fact, if there’s been one constant between the two films, besides Chazelle’s adeptness in crafting unforgettable movies, it’s actor J.K. Simmons.
Simmons earned an Oscar for his role as jazz instructor Terence Fletcher in Whiplash and, while he most likely won’t be taking home another one in February, had a smaller role in La La Land as a restaurant owner named Bill. According to THR, Simmons signed on to the project before the film’s leads, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, were attached and had his choice of roles. »
- Justin Cook
Stars: Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, John Legend, Rosemarie DeWitt, Amiée Conn, Terry Walters, Thom Shelton, Callie Hernandez, Jessica Rothe, Sonoya Mizuno, J.K. Simmons, Jason Fuchs | Written and Directed by Damien Chazelle
The third film from Damien Chazelle, in what might be dubbed his “Jazz Trilogy”, La La Land eschews the New Wave immediacy of Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench and the psychological horror notes of Whiplash, and brings us a blast of Golden Age musical energy. La La Land arrives on a zephyr of hype; and while it’s not up to the standard of his previous feature, it has a certain charm of its own.
Except, it’s not really its own. Like The Artist before it, La La Land is an awards-friendly picture – proudly presented in “Cinemascope” – which is inextricably wedded to past glories. Yet I’m not sure its modern elements are entirely comfortable in the relationship. »
- Rupert Harvey
Since its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival last year, Damien Chazelle’s romantic musical “La La Land” has garnered widespread critical acclaim and has grossed over $90 million worldwide. Last Sunday, the film won seven Golden Globes, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress, breaking the record of most wins by a single film. Now, the film might have the opportunity to come alive on the stage.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Lionsgate Motion Picture Group co-president Erik Feig told investors this past Tuesday that the studio eventually may mount a touring stage show “If we want to do a stage show, we can do a stage show,” says Feig, pointing to Lionsgate’s “Step Up” franchise as a template for adapting a film for the stage.
- Vikram Murthi
12 January 2017 9:00 AM, PST | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »
Long before Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling were cast in La La Land, J.K. Simmons, who won a best supporting actor Oscar for Damien Chazelle's Whiplash, was offered not one but two roles in the Globe-winning musical.
Simmons tells THR: "During the Whiplash shoot, he sent me the script and said, 'There's really not much of a part for you. I'd love for you to do one of these two little parts. Let me know which one.' I picked the guy who hates jazz [over playing Emma's father]." Though Simmons is onscreen for only a few minutes, there's plenty of »
- Brian Porreca
If you've seen La La Land, chances are good that you don't even want to imagine anyone but Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in the lead roles — but they weren't originally supposed to play those parts. In August of 2015, Miles Teller told Esquire that director Damien Chazelle originally offered him the lead in La La Land while they were working on Whiplash. He almost passed on War Dogs because of his commitment, then he got some unexpected news. "I got a call from my agent, saying, 'Hey, I just got a call from Lionsgate. Damien told them that he no longer thinks you're creatively right for the project. He's moving on without you.'" This went under the radar for a bit, until Uproxx asked Chazelle about it during the Toronto Film Festival last year. While Chazelle didn't want to comment on Teller's claim about how he was booted from the film, »
- Maggie Pehanick
If you’re wondering where the next Damien Chazelle will come from, look no further than the 2017 Sundance Film Festival short film lineup.
Sundance has a long history of discovering the next generation of acclaimed filmmakers by first championing their short films. Chazelle made his first big splash by winning the 2013 Grand Jury Prize for “Whiplash” (the short). Last year, Jim Cummings won that prize for “Thunder Road,” and he’s back this year with a new short. Also generating a lot of pre-festival buzz is Kristen Stewart, making her writing/directing debut with the short “Come Swim.”
Before the Sundance Film Festival commences on January 19, 2017, here’s a briefing on Cummings’ “The Robbery,” Stewart’s “Come Swim” and eight other buzzworthy shorts (two of which are viewable online).
IndieWire reached out to the filmmakers to ask about their inspiration, production challenges and future projects. Check out our list below, »
- Kim Adelman
Author: Stefan Pape
When we caught La La Land in Toronto, it became clear right away it was something special. Seven Golden Globe wins – and a handful of BAFTA noms later – and it seems we aren’t the only ones who feel this way, so needless to say it was a pleasure to sit down with the man at the helm, director Damien Chazelle.
Chazelle, who burst onto the scene with the remarkable drama Whiplash, speaks to us about his decision to get involved in the musical genre, while also speaking about the forthcoming Academy Awards and what it means to be involved in the conversation. He also speaks about his next project; a Neil Armstrong biopic, again starring Ryan Gosling.
Related: Premiere Interviews from the London Film Festival
Related: Premiere Interviews from the Toronto Film Festival
“I’m working with Ryan on a movie about Neil Armstrong and the »
- Stefan Pape
It’s hard to imagine Damien Chazelle’s whimsical musical La La Land — which just nabbed a historic seven Golden Globe awards on Sunday — without Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling at the helm. After all, both actors also scored Golden Globes of their own for their charming performances as an aspiring actress and frustrated jazz musician.
However, the frequent costars — who also appeared together in Crazy, Stupid, Love and Gangster Squad — almost didn’t make it to the screen. In fact, at one point, La La Land was originally set to star a different duo.
Miles Teller, who headlined Chazelle’s previous film, »
- Stephanie Petit
This article originally appeared on EW.com
There were so many ways La La Land could have gone wrong.
Damien Chazelle, who previously wrote and directed 2014’s Whiplash, wanted to whip up some Old Hollywood magic. Using 1950s CinemaScope lenses, he set out to create a modern-day musical — a love story of two 21st-century dreamers trying to make it in Los Angeles. Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) is a struggling jazz pianist who wants to open his own club, and Mia (Emma Stone) is an aspiring actress who decides to write her own role.
The dramatic scenes needed to be as intimate as the best indie film, »
Damien Chazelle’s “Whiplash” and Darren Aronofsky‘s “Black Swan” are more similar than not. Both stunning, masterfully accomplishments on their own, these two awards contenders equally celebrate what YouTube video editor Lessons From the Screenplay dubs “The Obsessed Performer” in his latest video essay, “Whiplash vs. Black Swan — The Anatomy of the Obsessed Performer.” Not only do they share a similar premise, involving two performers providing the ultimate sacrifice for their art, but the ways in which these two interconnect — unbeknownst and seamlessly — to each other provides a fruitful double billing worth exploring.
- Kevin Jagernauth
Damien Chazelle’s Oscars frontrunner is a love letter to the Los Angeles of your dreams
I fully expected to loathe La La Land, being, as I am, rather proprietorial about my beloved hometown of 25 years, and having been robustly dismissive of director Damien Chazelle’s last movie, Whiplash. But, to my delight, Chazelle had me in the palm of his hand right from the opening sequence, when the two leads – underemployed jazz musician Ryan Gosling and aspiring actor Emma Stone – meet cute during an-all singing, all-dancing traffic snarl on the soaring overpass connecting the 105 and 110 freeways over Watts, which affords the most beautiful view of La you can find. I was swept away by La La Land’s fierce ardour for its locale, its unapologetic romanticism and its kinetic perpetual motion (and emotion).
Continue reading. »
- John Patterson
Going into the 2017 Golden Globes, La La Land had the most nominations of any other film with seven, followed by Moonlight with six nominations and Manchester-by-the-Sea with five nominations. At the end of the night, La La Land made history by winning all seven of the awards it was nominated for, taking the most wins for any film in Golden Globes history. It was also the first movie to win every major Golden Globe it was nominated for since One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest in 1976, which could set it up for a big night on Oscar Sunday next month.
Deadline reports that La La Land ran the table tonight, winning Best Picture Comedy or Musical, filmmaker Damien Chazelle winning Best Director and Best Screenplay, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone for Best Actor and Best Actress, Best Original Score by Justin Hurwitz and Best Original Song for "City of Stars. »
Click here for the full list of winners, updated live
- Lanre Bakare in Los Angeles and Benjamin Lee in New York
Lionsgate’s “La La Land” quietly crossed the $50 million mark at the domestic box office over the weekend as it more than doubled its locations count from 750 to 1,515, portending a strong future for the musical comedy-drama.
Despite snowy weather holding down overall moviegoing, two awards contenders generated solid grosses over the weekend — Fox’s “Hidden Figures” in second place with $21.8 million at 2,178 sites for an $8,822 per theater average and “La La Land” in fifth with $10 million and a $6,601 average.
It’s a nice payoff for Lionsgate’s strategy of opting to go with a platform release for the Emma Stone-Ryan Gosling vehicle to build awareness amid awards-season momentum. “La La Land” grossed $881,104 from five theaters in New York and Los Angeles on its opening weekend on Dec. 9-11. The film’s per-location average of $176,201 was the second-best ever for a specialty film after “Grand Budapest Hotel.”
“La La Land »
- Dave McNary
Warner Bros. and director Zack Snyder are assembling DC’s greatest heroes on the big screen for the very first time this November with the arrival of Justice League, and a new image has surfaced on Twitter, which shows a scan from a German magazine and gives us a look at the team assembled – sans Superman of course, who is presumably still dead at this point (now updated with a hi-res version).
Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to find and recruit a team of metahumans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes—Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg »
- Gary Collinson
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