Eastwood’s ‘J. Edgar’ tapped to open AFI Fest

Posted by · 8:12 am · September 7th, 2011

The press release, in part: The American Film Institute (AFI) announced today that J. EDGAR, directed by AFI Life Achievement Award recipient and Academy Award-winning director Clint Eastwood, will have its world premiere as the Opening Night Gala of AFI FEST 2011 presented by Audi… “Clint Eastwood is an American icon ­ one whose work […]

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Almodovar tapped as Guest Director for AFI Fest

Posted by · 8:28 am · August 29th, 2011

The press release, in part: American Film Institute (AFI) announced today that internationally acclaimed filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar will serve as its Guest Artistic Director at AFI FEST 2011 presented by Audi. AFI FEST — celebrating its 25th year in 2011 — will take place November 3 through 10 in Hollywood, California at the historic Chinese […]

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OSCAR TALK: Ep. 40 — ‘The Fighter’ and ‘Black Swan’ hit AFI Fest, a riskless Hollywood and previewing the Governors Awards

Posted by · 11:21 am · November 12th, 2010

Welcome to Oscar Talk. In case you’re new to the site and/or the podcast, Oscar Talk is a weekly kudocast, your one-stop awards chat shop between yours truly and Anne Thompson of Thompson on Hollywood. The podcast is weekly, every Friday throughout the season, charting the ups and downs of contenders along the way. Plenty […]

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AFI FEST: ‘Black Swan’ LA premiere wraps things up

Posted by · 10:06 am · November 12th, 2010

Last night was closing night of the 2010 AFI Fest, and they put a bow on things by offering up the Los Angeles premiere of AFI alum Darren Aronofsky’s “Black Swan.” I decided to head over to the Chinese Theatre to give it another look.  At this stage in the season, Telluride feel like ages […]

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AFI FEST: Audience and Jury Awards announced

Posted by · 12:11 pm · November 11th, 2010

I haven’t been able to do much at AFI Fest this year, but a last-minute decision to see “Eraserhead” and a secret bow for “The Fighter” have been rewarding experiences. And I believe I’ll take in the LA premiere of “Black Swan” tonight as well. I’m heading out the door or else I’d do more […]

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AFI FEST: ‘The Fighter’ crashes the party

Posted by · 3:29 am · November 10th, 2010

I decided to come home and give “The Fighter,” which saw its world premiere at a “secret screening” at AFI Fest tonight, some real thought rather than rushing back to review.  How novel. Given the amount of press on hand, one imagines Paramount publicity was besieged with ticket requests following the last minute announcement of […]

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AFI FEST: ‘The Fighter’ sneak attack

Posted by · 8:30 am · November 9th, 2010

Paramount is showing David O. Russell’s “The Fighter” to press tomorrow night on the lot, but this morning brings a curious announcement that the film will have a “secret” AFI Fest screening tonight.  I may give it a shot.  The press release, in part: AFI FEST 2010 presented by Audi announced today that it will […]

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AFI FEST: ‘Eraserhead’ ready for its close-up

Posted by · 11:29 am · November 8th, 2010

This year’s AFI Fest (“presented by AUDI,” as the literature keeps reminding us to call it) has felt something like a non-event so far this year.  I can’t put my finger on why, other than the usual sense of been there, done that as it pertains to films seeing their North American premieres. I’ve skipped […]

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Lynch picks Bergman, Kubrick, Tati, Hitchcock and Wilder for AFI Fest sidebar

Posted by · 10:35 am · October 25th, 2010

In case you didn’t know, director David Lynch was tapped as this year’s Guest Artistic Director at AFI Fest.  Part of his duties: to choose a special sidebar program at the festival.  Here’s the news, from the press release: AFI FEST 2010 presented by Audi announced today the five feature films selected by its first-ever […]

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AFI Fest announces centerpiece galas, ‘King’s Speech’ tribute

Posted by · 9:19 am · October 13th, 2010

Already announced, this year’s AFI Fest will be bookended by “Love & Other Drugs” and “Black Swan.” Today, more news.  The press release, in part: AFI FEST 2010 presented by Audi today announced its Centerpiece Galas, featuring ABEL (DIR Diego Luna), BARNEY’S VERSION (DIR Richard J. Lewis), BLUE VALENTINE (DIR Derek Cianfrance), CASINO JACK (DIR […]

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‘Love & Other Drugs’ to open AFI Fest

Posted by · 10:12 am · September 23rd, 2010

I’ll be here in LA covering AFI Fest once again this fall.  Typically it’s another chance to play catch-up on this title or that, but the festival does score its fair share of intriguing bows.  This year, it looks like Edward Zwick’s “Love & Other Drugs” starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Best Actress hopeful Anne Hathaway […]

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David Lynch tapped as guest director for AFI Fest

Posted by · 12:19 pm · August 24th, 2010

The press release, in part: AFI FEST presented by Audi announced today that award-winning filmmaker and artist David Lynch will serve as its first-ever Guest Artistic Director. AFI FEST 2010 will take place November 4 through 11 in Hollywood, California at the historic Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, the Mann Chinese 6 theatres, the Egyptian Theatre and […]

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Christopher Plummer talks Tolstoy, “S&M” and his under-the-radar film career at AFI Fest

Posted by · 7:03 pm · November 7th, 2009

Christopher Plummer was feted at AFI Fest Tuesday evening and I popped in for the brief toast before heading over to an unrelated Gala screening.  LA Weekly’s Scott Foundas was the moderator for an all-too-brief back and forth with the actor, who comes off as someone with whom you’d like to have a drink or […]

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WEEKLY WRAP: Oscar hosts, Bridges arrives, animated five

Posted by · 4:50 am · November 7th, 2009

• Oscar season ramped up this week, with the popular selection of Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin as this year’s Oscar emcees. • This week’s Off the Carpet column surveyed the runners and riders for Best Actor … • … only to be immediately outdated as Jeff Bridges and “Crazy Heart” arrived to turn that […]

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‘Fish Tank,’ ‘Woman Without Piano,’ ‘Ajami’ honored at AFI

Posted by · 10:39 am · November 6th, 2009

Life came calling earlier this week, so unfortunately I wasn’t able to make it to as many AFI Fest screenings and events as I had hoped.  I did catch Terry Gilliam’s “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus,” however (a bizarre, confusing misstep with a wonderful performance from Heath Ledger) and “Everybody’s Fine” (D.O.A.). I also caught […]

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11/3 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:07 am · November 3rd, 2009

• Documentary filmmaker whose work inspired the book “The Men Who Stare at Goats” seeks brutal vengeance for being “airbrushed” out of the film. [The Independent] • Jeff Wells sings the praises of “A Single Man” actor Nicholas Hoult. [Hollywood Elsewhere] • David Poland talks to honorary Oscar recipient Roger Corman. [Movie City News]

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Enter AFI

Posted by · 9:49 am · November 2nd, 2009

I haven’t had a chance to preview/write-up AFI Fest due to some a dizzying weekend and family obligations, but I should probably do that with the festivities entering a fourth day. “Fantastic Mr. Fox” kicked things off last week and with the festival moving from the Arclight on Sunset to the historic Chinese Theatre on […]

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WEEKLY WRAP: Foxes, festivals and foreign contenders

Posted by · 7:54 pm · October 16th, 2009

• The 53rd annual London Film Festival kicked off with Wes Anderson’s “Fantastic Mr. Fox” — we reviewed it here. • Speaking of festivals, the AFI Fest unveiled its own complete lineup, with “Fox” and “A Single Man” as its bookends. • This week’s edition of The Long Shot considered the extensive possibilities for black, […]

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