OSCAR TALK: Ep. 37 — The early year forgotten, Michael Douglas’s dueling Oscar campaigns, the animated feature race and more

Posted by · 8:55 am · October 22nd, 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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10/18 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Buzz for Rudd, Ebert chats up ‘Secretariat’ author, ‘Alice in Wonderland’ push for Best Pic

Posted by · 8:41 am · October 18th, 2010

• Jeffrey Wells posts a reader review of James L. Brooks’s “How Do You Know” that claims Paul Rudd is a sure-fire Best Supporting Actor nominee, but I’d expect a lead campaign for him and buzz for Jack Nicholson in support. [Hollywood Elsewhere] • Steve Rose on the secret of the Winkelvi from David Fincher’s […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Art Direction — Volume II

Posted by · 10:56 am · October 7th, 2010

Oh how things have changed since I last wrote in this space. In the past four weeks, Tech Support has taken a break, allowing the dust from the festival circuit to settle, and other titles to open. Over the next 10 weeks, we’ll take a second look at each of the crafts categories, finishing in […]

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Celebrating 25 years of Burton/Elfman collaborations

Posted by · 5:20 pm · October 1st, 2010

In the “sign me up now, please” category today is a recently announced boxed set of Danny Elfman’s music collaborations with filmmaker Tim Burton.  I first heard about the limited edition set via the New York Times in a piece that went up on the Arts Beat blog yesterday.  It featured a video with Burton […]

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Rockwell, Carter, Garfield, Wasikowska tapped for HFF honors

Posted by · 11:18 am · September 20th, 2010

On the heels of last week’s introductory announcement, it has been announced that Sam Rockwell, Helena Bonham Carter, Andrew Garfield and Mia Wasikowska will be recognized at this year’s Hollywood Film Festival awards.  The press release, in part: The 14th Annual Hollywood Film Festival and Hollywood Awards, presented by Starz, are pleased to announce honorees […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Visual Effects — Volume I

Posted by · 9:07 am · September 9th, 2010

How often do you go to the movies to escape? To be immersed into a different world, whether it be fantastical, thrilling or action-packed? For many movie-goers, if not most, the answer is “frequently.” Visual effects often play a massive role in this experience.  Studios invest heavily in them and frequently try to sell films […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Original Score — Volume I

Posted by · 4:31 pm · August 19th, 2010

I am marveled by the accomplishments of all the crafts artists who elevate our films, but this is particularly the case with respect to music composers. Composing equals genius as far as I am concerned.These musicians  join the film at the end, when usually only the director, editor and perhaps the sound mixers are still […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Makeup — Volume I

Posted by · 11:14 am · August 12th, 2010

Makeup and hairstyling builds characters by transforming actors with realism or imagination that would otherwise be lacking on the screen. With the announcement that the Best Visual Effects is expanding to include five nominees this year, Best Makeup now remains the sole category to have three nominees, chosen from a “bake-off” of seven finalists which […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Costume Design — Volume I

Posted by · 11:56 pm · July 30th, 2010

Costume design in many ways represents much about the Oscars: glitz, glamor, beauty. But obviously threads do much more than make movie stars look attractive.  They build character, set mood, define period and serve as a defining design aspect of a film. Like art direction, the nominees for here overwhelmingly fall into one of two […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Art Direction — Volume I

Posted by · 10:45 pm · July 16th, 2010

As we like to point out in this space each year, the Academy Award for Best Art Direction is presented to two individuals who have different but key roles in designing a film’s sets and props. The first of these, the production designer, is the director of the film’s art department, responsible for the supervision […]

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Combing through the first-half contenders

Posted by · 9:30 am · June 18th, 2010

With the year nearly at its midway point, the Hollywood Reporter’s Gregg Kilday has taken on the rather fruitless task of sussing out potential Oscar contenders from the last six months of releases. As you will no doubt be shocked to hear, he doesn’t find many — declaring “Toy Story 3” the year’s first viable […]

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On the move

Posted by · 3:35 pm · May 28th, 2010

Sorry for the post-Cannes drought on my end. I’m en route from Chicago to Nowheresville, Ohio after a rockin’ Route 66 road trip and will be playing meet the parents this weekend. Understandably, I’m out of pocket. So use this space to talk about, I don’t know, “Shrek?” “Prince of Persia?” All I know is […]

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Ebert versus the third dimension

Posted by · 8:26 am · May 4th, 2010

By now, you may have read Roger Ebert’s lengthy nine-point diatribe against 3D in Newsweek — it has certainly generated a substantial amount of online conversation in the last few days. On the face of it, as a declared 3D agnostic myself, I should be pleased with the article: when a “Clash of the Titans” […]

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SUNDAY CENTS: Cash of the ‘Titans’

Posted by · 8:34 am · April 4th, 2010

*All historical figures cited are adjusted to today’s dollars. Alright. “Clash of the Titans” is the number one film at the box office with a weekend take of $61.4 million. Is that a tally worthy of the Gods? Simply put, in my opinion, no. Let’s set aside the 3D for a second and just pretend […]

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SUNDAY CENTS: ‘Dragon’ slays

Posted by · 1:55 pm · March 28th, 2010

*All historical figures cited are adjusted to today’s dollars. I trust your dragons have been sufficiently trained. Despite sounding like a codename for masturbation amongst middle schoolers, “How to Train Your Dragon” is the number one movie at the box office with $43.3 million smackers. Depending on how you look at things, this result could […]

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SUNDAY CENTS: Dear ‘Diary,’ Why wasn’t I in 3D?

Posted by · 9:20 am · March 21st, 2010

*All historical figures cited are adjusted to today’s dollars. I haven’t heard a single person say “Alice in Wonderland” is anything but awful yet here we stand at its third weekend atop the box office. The film added another $34.5 million to its staggering tally of $265.8 million and I don’t really know what to […]

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Ubiquitous

Posted by · 3:24 pm · March 19th, 2010

When I heard today that Mia Wasikowska had landed the lead in Cary Fukunaga’s upcoming adaptation of “Jane Eyre” for Focus Features, my first thought was, “Well, who else?” Not that there aren’t other suitable young actresses who could ace the part. But 20 year-old Australian Wasikowska seems to have hit a sweet spot in […]

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SUNDAY CENTS: A very important date

Posted by · 11:43 am · March 7th, 2010

*All historical figures cited are adjusted to today’s dollars. May I introduce the film with the 14th biggest debut of all time, “Alice in Wonderland.” It’s also the biggest March debut, biggest 3D debut and third biggest non-sequel debut of all time. If your goal was to ensure that Tim Burton continues to lazily adapt […]

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