Roundup: Harvey's mea culpa on 'Django' and 'The Master'

Posted by · 5:45 am · January 30th, 2013

Harvey Weinstein has had enough success in the Oscar campaigning game — including twin Best Picture bids this year for “Silver Linings Playbook” and “Django Unchained” — that it can’t pain him too much to admit to the odd miscalculation. Still, it’s interesting to see him do so in an interview with Deadline’s Mike Fleming. Weinstein blames Quentin Tarantino’s absence from the Best Director category (hardly an easy race to crack this year, as Ben Affleck can tell you) on his own tardiness in sending out DVD screeners. He also claims he mismarketed Paul Thomas Anderson’s “The Master”: “I think the audience had trouble with the movie and needed to be guided and eased into it … My attachment to ‘The Master’ was not the Scientology or religion; it was that in WWII, people like my dad and other combat veterans came back and were just lost after the war. Maybe if I”d explained the movie in those terms, that it was more of a spiritual quest for a veteran who had seen action and got lost, people might have responded differently.” [Deadline]

Barbra Streisand will sing at the Oscars for the first time in 36 years. (Now that she’s available, I hope the music branch thoroughly regrets not nominating “100 Black Coffins.”) [Variety]

“The Sapphires” has swept the AACTAs — Australia’s answer to the Oscars — by winning all 11 awards for which it was nominated. Sweet film, but that’s excessive. Can the Weinsteins get any Oscar traction for it in 2013? [The Australian]

Richard Lawson on why “Zero Dark Thirty” isn’t doing quite as well as it should be in this year’s Oscar race. [Atlantic Wire]

Stanley Fish defends “Les Misérables” and its “refusal to afford the distance that enables irony.” [New York Times

Rogriguez, the hero of Oscar-nominated doc “Searching for Sugar Man,” is returning to the recording studio for the first time in 42 years. [The Guardian]

I haven’t linked yet to Press Play’s nice series of video essays on this year’s top oscar races. This one on Best Actor is the most recent. [Press Play]

Ed Gonzalez ranks all but one of the 52 titles nominated at the Academy Awards this year. (Look away, “Les Mis” fans.) [The House Next Door]

John Horn wonders if “Argo” will deliver a “shocker” at the DGA Awards this weekend. At this point, wouldn’t it be more of a surprise if Ben Affleck lost? [LA Times]

An excellent piece by Scott Tobias on why, in the complicated hierarchy of movie grading, there’s more dignity to an F than a D-. [AV Club]

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