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Tribeca 2018: Alexander Payne Reflects On Why Downsizing “Tanked” and Talks Directing Jack Nicholson

  • HeyUGuys
As part of the 17th annual Tribeca Film Festival’s Tribeca Talks: Director’s Series Oscar-winning filmmaker Alexander Payne took to the stage to discuss his career to date which includes seven feature films: Election, Citizen Ruth, Downsizing, The Descendants, Sideways, About Schmidt and Nebraska. Payne was joined by fellow Nebraskan, comedian and multiple Emmy-winning TV host, Dick Cavett.

Cavett asked Payne about the experience of directing the great Jack Nicholson on About Schmidt. “He made me a better director,” Payne revealed. “There’s a lot of pressure when you’re a director to say the right thing. First of all to figure out what you want, if there’s something you want and then the right thing to say and often you can’t think of the brilliant thing to say, the “actable” verb. You have to give a result or a line reading. Anyway, I would say something
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Who’s your favorite Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner of 1980s: Jack Nicholson, Kevin Kline, Denzel Washington … ? [Poll]

Who’s your favorite Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner of 1980s: Jack Nicholson, Kevin Kline, Denzel Washington … ? [Poll]
Like the other acting winners of the 1980s, the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor went to big stars and character actors alike. The ’80s featured big-name winners like Jack Nicholson, Kevin Kline, Sean Connery and Michael Caine alongside hardworking veterans like John Gielgud, Louis Gossett Jr. and Don Ameche. The Academy also rewarded emerging talent, like Timothy Hutton, Haing S. Ngor and the now double-champ Denzel Washington.

So who is your favorite Best Supporting Actor winner of the 1980s? Look back on each performance and be sure to vote in our poll below.

Timothy Hutton, “Ordinary People” (1980) — Hutton came out of the gate strong with his heartbreaking performance in Best Picture winner “Ordinary People.” Hutton plays Conrad Jarrett, a teenager wracked with guilt after his brother is killed in a boating accident. Hutton is clearly the lead of the film, but at age 20, the studio may have felt it fairer
See full article at Gold Derby »

Alexander Payne in Talks for Legal Drama ‘The Burial’ at Amazon

Alexander Payne in Talks for Legal Drama ‘The Burial’ at Amazon
Writer-director Alexander Payne is in negotiations with Amazon Studios to direct the legal drama “The Burial.”

The script, written by Doug Wright, is based on a 1995 case filed by high-profile personal-injury attorney Willie Gary on behalf of Jeremiah O’Keefe, the owner of a local chain of Mississippi funeral homes who alleged he had been swindled by Ray Loewen, head of a funeral home conglomerate. The jury in the case awarded a $500 million judgment to O’Keefe.

The project has been developed by producers Jenette Kahn and Adam Richman through their Double Nickle company. “The Burial” was originally developed at Sony.

Payne won two screenwriting Academy Awards and was nominated for best director for “Sideways” and “The Descendants.” He also received a directing nod at the Oscars for “Nebraska.” His other credits include “Citizen Ruth,” “Election,” “About Schmidt,” and “Downsizing,”which underperformed for Paramount last year.

Amazon’s most successful
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Kathy Bates (‘Misery’) is your #1 fan after being voted top Best Actress Oscar winner of 1990s [Poll Results]

Kathy Bates (‘Misery’) is your #1 fan after being voted top Best Actress Oscar winner of 1990s [Poll Results]
Kathy Bates just took a big swing at her fellow Best Actress Oscar winners. The legendary actress has won Gold Derby’s poll asking you to vote for your favorite winner of the 1990s, for her iconic role as demented fan Annie Wilkes in the film adaptation of Stephen King‘s “Misery” (1990).

Bates won our poll with 23% of the vote, squeaking out a victory over several beloved actresses. Jodie Foster (“The Silence of the Lambs”) and Jessica Lange (“Blue Sky”) tied for second place with 19% each. Coming in fourth place was Frances McDormand (“Fargo”), who also happens to be the frontrunner to win Best Actress at this year’s Oscars. Hilary Swank (“Boys Don’t Cry”) rounded out the top five at 9%.

SEEStephen King movies best performances: Where does Bill Skarsgard (‘It’) rank in top 10?

From there we have Holly Hunter (“The Piano”) at 6%, Susan Sarandon (“Dead Man Walking”) at
See full article at Gold Derby »

2018 BAFTA Awards: Lesley Manville has home-court advantage over Allison Janney, Laurie Metcalf

2018 BAFTA Awards: Lesley Manville has home-court advantage over Allison Janney, Laurie Metcalf
Lesley Manville has lost her previous two BAFTA Awards bids but third time could be the charm on Sunday as she contends for her scene-stealing turn in “Phantom Thread.” This home-grown talent could be the beneficiary of a split vote between two of the other Best Supporting Actress nominees: Americans Allison Janney (“I, Tonya”) and Laurie Metcalf (“Lady Bird”).

While Janney won the Globe, Critics Choice and SAG awards, there is still a sense that this race is far from being labelled a done deal. This isn’t a Gary Oldman situation, wherein his win is all but secured (clear your mantlepiece, Gary, you’ve got a statuette to make room for). Rather, this is still a race that is in flux.

That is where Manville comes in. She and her film made a surprising surge late in the awards race. The veteran character actress numbers among the six Oscar
See full article at Gold Derby »

‘Get Out,’ ‘Call Me by Your Name’ would only be second pair of Oscar screenplay winners without Globe nominations

‘Get Out,’ ‘Call Me by Your Name’ would only be second pair of Oscar screenplay winners without Globe nominations
Get Out” and “Call Me by Your Name” each has a Writers Guild Award to its name, with respective Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay victories Sunday, but that’s not the only thing the films have in common. Neither script was nominated at the Golden Globes, which only has one screenplay category. If they both go on to win their corresponding screenplay Oscars, they’d only be the second pair of script winners that were snubbed by the Globes.

The only pair to accomplish this was 2002’s “Talk to Her,” which won original, and “The Pianist,” which won adapted.” The Globes awarded “About Schmidt” over “Adaptation,” “Chicago,” “Far From Heaven” and “The Hours.” If that’s not enough, “Talk to Her” and “The Pianist” also claimed their Oscars without WGA mentions — the former was ineligible and the latter was not nominated.

See Writers Guild Awards winners: ‘Call Me
See full article at Gold Derby »

Who’s your favorite Best Actor Oscar winner of the 1990s: Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hanks, Al Pacino … ? [Poll]

Who’s your favorite Best Actor Oscar winner of the 1990s: Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hanks, Al Pacino … ? [Poll]
The Best Actor Oscar winners of the 1990s include some of the most legendary actors in film history, like Anthony Hopkins, Al Pacino, Tom Hanks and Jack Nicholson. We’ve also seen actors springboard off their victories to have fruitful careers in film, like Geoffrey Rush and Nicolas Cage. Now, two decades later, which do you consider the greatest Best Actor winner of the 1990s?

Refamiliarize yourself with the winners and be sure to vote in our poll below. (See 2018 Oscar predictions for Best Actor.)

Jeremy Irons, “Reversal of Fortune” (1990) — The ’90s began with Jeremy Irons being awarded for “Reverse of Fortune,” in which the actor plays Claus von Bulow, a man charged with attempted murder after his wife goes into diabetic shock. Despite a long career in film this remains Irons’ only nomination and win, though he has won two Emmys for voiceover work and another for his performance in 2005’s “Elizabeth I.
See full article at Gold Derby »

Who’s your favorite Best Actress Oscar winner of the 1990s: Jessica Lange, Frances McDormand, Holly Hunter … ? [Poll]

Who’s your favorite Best Actress Oscar winner of the 1990s: Jessica Lange, Frances McDormand, Holly Hunter … ? [Poll]
The Best Actress Oscar winners of the 1990s have all had long careers of success in Hollywood to varying degrees. From overdue actresses finally getting their first statue like Susan Sarandon to younger talent like Gwyneth Paltrow, the decade is full of diverse performances. Now, two decades later, which do you think holds up as the top Best Actress performance of the ’90s?

Take a look back on each winning performance and make sure to vote in our poll at the bottom. (See 2018 Oscar predictions for Best Actress.)

Kathy Bates, “Misery” (1990) — Kathy Bates in “Misery” is a great example of an actress breaking through in an unconventional way. Playing Annie Wilkes, deranged fan of an author who tortures him mercilessly, Bates became one of few actresses to win for a pure horror movie. She would later earn supporting nominations for “Primary Colors” (1998) and “About Schmidt” (2002).

SEEOscar snub explained: Did ‘Three
See full article at Gold Derby »

Sundance Film Review: ‘Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind’

Sundance Film Review: ‘Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind’
In “Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind,” a documentary that’s sharp-edged, humane, and deeply researched enough to take you closer to the manic engine of Williams’ brilliance and pain than you were before, the smartest decision made by the director, Marina Zenovich, was to use a great many never-before-seen outtakes, as well as clips from obscure or forgotten performances, so that Williams’ routines hit the audience with a fresh ping. In one of the most spectacular of these clips, the film replays the extended acceptance speech he made for Best Actor at the 2003 Critics’ Choice awards.

Williams didn’t actually win the award. He was up for his turn as a creepy psycho nerd in “One Hour Photo” (to me, a rather overrated stunt of a performance), and he lost. There was, in fact, a tie that year, with the award going to both the other nominees: Daniel Day-Lewis for “Gangs of New York” and Jack Nicholson
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Downsizing’: What Went Wrong with Alexander Payne’s Social Satire

  • Indiewire
‘Downsizing’: What Went Wrong with Alexander Payne’s Social Satire
It’s easy to forget how many times Alexander Payne has pulled off movies that, on their face, were nowhere close to commercial. Payne has crossed over between the arthouse and the mainstream throughout his career. He’s a strong writer-director with a good nose for what will play for smart audiences all over the country. Born in Omaha, Neb., he has a gift for finding the universal in ordinary people; he has the populist touch. Making people laugh is a surefire way of getting stories across — except when they don’t land.

Payne has enjoyed a remarkable run. He and his writing partner Jim Taylor (who dreamed up this “getting small” idea with his brother Doug) are Oscar perennials. They were nominated for writing “Election” (1999; $17 million worldwide) and producing with Jim BurkeThe Descendants” (2011; $175 million worldwide), a Best Picture nominee. Payne has won twice, for writing “Sideways” with Taylor
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Downsizing’: What Went Wrong with Alexander Payne’s Social Satire

‘Downsizing’: What Went Wrong with Alexander Payne’s Social Satire
It’s easy to forget how many times Alexander Payne has pulled off movies that, on their face, were nowhere close to commercial. Payne has crossed over between the arthouse and the mainstream throughout his career. He’s a strong writer-director with a good nose for what will play for smart audiences all over the country. Born in Omaha, Neb., he has a gift for finding the universal in ordinary people; he has the populist touch. Making people laugh is a surefire way of getting stories across — except when they don’t land.

Payne has enjoyed a remarkable run. He and his writing partner Jim Taylor (who dreamed up this “getting small” idea with his brother Doug) are Oscar perennials. They were nominated for writing “Election” (1999; $17 million worldwide) and producing with Jim Burke “The Descendants” (2011; $175 million worldwide), a Best Picture nominee. Payne has won twice, for writing “Sideways” with Taylor
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

'Downsizing' Box Office a Rare Miss for Alexander Payne

'Downsizing' Box Office a Rare Miss for Alexander Payne
Acclaimed filmmaker Alexander Payne and Paramount may have bet big on Downsizing, but the movie is doing miniature-like business at the year-end holiday box office.

If the R-rated satirical comedy doesn't make a miraculous recovery, it will mark the first major miss of Payne's career, whose past films include prestige titles Nebraska, The Descendants, Sideways, About Schmidt and Election.

Downsizing is also the third movie in a row starring Matt Damon that's disappointed in North America after 2017 titles Suburbicon, directed by Damon's longtime collaborator, George Clooney, and The Great Wall. Prior to that, Damon turned out box-office...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

‘Downsizing’ Review: Matt Damon Gets Small In A Smart, Funny & Human Movie With Big Ideas

‘Downsizing’ Review: Matt Damon Gets Small In A Smart, Funny & Human Movie With Big Ideas
There is no smarter director of wry and human comedy than Alexander Payne, whose filmography includes gems like Election, Nebraska, About Schmidt and Oscar-winning scripts like Sideways and The Descendants. As I say in my video review above, his latest, Downsizing, fits right in but also might be his most ambitious movie yet — certainly it is technically. In the vein of such great cinematic satirists as Billy Wilder and Preston Sturges, Payne and co-writer Jim Taylor
See full article at Deadline Movie News »

Alexander Payne on Tackling His Biggest Themes in ‘Downsizing’ and Why We ‘Need’ Horror Movies Today

Alexander Payne on Tackling His Biggest Themes in ‘Downsizing’ and Why We ‘Need’ Horror Movies Today
Alexander Payne recently had a business lunch with Jason Blum.

It may seem like an odd pairing. Payne is an Oscar-winning auteur known for such salt-of-the-earth comedies as “About Schmidt” and “Nebraska,” films where moments of levity emerge from a kind of hardscrabble realism. Blum, the hugely successful producer behind “The Purge” and “Insidious,” is a mogul of the macabre. But Payne, after seven movies that largely center on middle-aged schnooks, says he’s done with dramatizing the foibles of the pocket-protector set. He’s ready to shake things up.

“I want to do something different,” Payne tells Variety during a recent interview at Viacom’s Times Square headquarters. “How fun would it be to do a horror movie? They’re all the rage right now, and they make a lot of money.”

Before Payne can team up with Blum, however, he’s got a film to release. That’s why he’s flown to New York
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Election

We’ve all met Tracy Flick — the eager-beaver student that charms the right teachers, wins all the awards and corners the big scholarships. Alexander Payne’s witty, perceptive look at High School shows the predicament of a model teacher who can’t help but sabotage a pupil’s run for class president. Reese Witherspoon’s wholly original characterization scores big, and Matthew Broderick plays what is probably his best screen role.

Election

Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection 904

1999 / Color / 2:35 widescreen / 103 min. / available through The Criterion Collection / Street Date December 5, 2017 / 39.95

Starring: Matthew Broderick, Reese Witherspoon, Chris Klein, Jessica Campbell, Phil Reeves, Molly Hagan, Delaney Driscoll, Mark Harelik, Colleen Camp.

Cinematography: James Glennon

Film Editor: Kevin Tent

Production Design: Jane Ann Stewart

Original Music: Rolfe Kent

Written by Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor from a novel by Tom Perotta

Produced by Albert Berger, David Gale, Keith Samples, Ron Yerxa

Directed by Alexander Payne

“What
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Harry Gittes, Producer and Longtime Friend of Jack Nicholson, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, Producer and Longtime Friend of Jack Nicholson, Dies at 81
Harry Gittes, who produced multiple movies starring Jack Nicholson, died of natural causes on Sept. 2. He was 81.

Gittes attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst before starting his career as an advertising copywriter and photographer in New York. In the ’60s, he began shooting album covers for the likes of Woody Allen and Cass Elliot at the Bitter End, New York’s oldest rock club. Gittes also photographed then-up-and-comers including Nicholson, Elliott Gould, and Liza Minnelli.

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He became friends with producer Roy Silver, who eventually sparked Gittes’ future as a film producer. Together, they produced the 1969 pilot of the animated special “Hey, Hey, Hey, It’s Fat Albert.”

Gittes also cultivated a friendship with Nicholson, and produced several projects with the actor-director, including “Goin’ South,” “Drive, He Said,” and “About Schmidt.” Nicholson’s character in 1974 classic “Chinatown,” private investigator J.J. Gittes, was named after the producer.

Gittes
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Get in the zone: the many adaptations of Roadside Picnic

Padraig Cotter Oct 11, 2017

The sci-fi novel Roadside Picnic has inspired works in film, TV, books and even videogames...

Stalker was the final film Andrei Tarkovsky made in the Soviet Union, and is a hypnotic, beguiling experience that refuses to surrender to any one interpretation. That hasn’t stopped critics and fans attempting to apply their own readings of course; is it a religious allegory, a commentary on life in the Soviet Union, an essay on filmmaking or is it about three miserable Russian blokes having a bit of an aimless wander? It could be all of the above, or none - it’s up to each viewer to decide for themselves.

The film is a loose adaptation of Russian sci-fi novel Roadside Picnic by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky, and while on the surface they share similar characters and themes, they play out very differently. Even more interesting is how Roadside Picnic
See full article at Den of Geek »

Downsizing Trailer Shrinks Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig

  • MovieWeb
Downsizing Trailer Shrinks Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig
Paramount Pictures has released the first trailer and photo for Downsizing, the latest from fimmaker Alexander Payne, which tackles the global issue of over-population in a very peculiar way. The title does not refer to downsizing on a corporate level, as it pertains to company-wide layoffs, but rather the downsizing, or miniaturization of every day people. While this gimmick has certainly been tackled before, Downsizing takes a global approach to a rather silly trope that has been used countless times in movies such as Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, and even Marvel's Ant-Man.

Downsizing imagines what might happen if, as a solution to over-population, Norwegian scientists discover how to shrink humans to five inches tall and propose a 200-year global transition from big to small. People soon realize how much further money goes in a miniaturized world, and with the promise of a better life, everyman Paul Safranek (Matt Damon
See full article at MovieWeb »

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, who produced the Jack Nicholson films Drive, He Said; Goin' South and About Schmidt and was the namesake for the actor's gumshoe character in Chinatown, has died. He was 81.

Gittes died Saturday of natural causes in Los Angeles, publicist Seth Horowitz reported.

Gittes also produced Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976), starring James Caan, Elliott Gould, Michael Caine and Diane Keaton; Richard Benjamin's Little Nikita (1988), starring Sidney Poitier and River Phoenix; Breaking In (1989), written by John Sayles and starring Burt Reynolds; and The Girl Next Door (2004), starring Emile Hirsch.

Born on May 6, 1936, in...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - TV News »

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81

Harry Gittes, Jack Nicholson's Pal and Producer, Dies at 81
Harry Gittes, who produced the Jack Nicholson films Drive, He Said; Goin' South and About Schmidt and was the namesake for the actor's gumshoe character in Chinatown, has died. He was 81.

Gittes died Saturday of natural causes in Los Angeles, publicist Seth Horowitz reported.

Gittes also produced Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976), starring James Caan, Elliott Gould, Michael Caine and Diane Keaton; Richard Benjamin's Little Nikita (1988), starring Sidney Poitier and River Phoenix; Breaking In (1989), written by John Sayles and starring Burt Reynolds; and The Girl Next Door (2004), starring Emile Hirsch.

Born on May 6, 1936, in...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »
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