‘John Carter’ teaser trailer

Posted by · 10:04 am · July 14th, 2011

Tons of trailers in the lead-up to Comic-Con this week. Today, it’s Andrew Stanton’s live-action debut, “John Carter” (which won’t have a presence at Comic-Con because Disney wants to be competitive with its D23 event). I’m not too sure about this one, and I think the reasoning for diminishing the brand appeal by shortening the […]

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OSCAR GUIDE: Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

Posted by · 10:05 am · February 7th, 2011

This year’s race for Best Adapted Screenplay has seemingly been the most predictable of the year. One script has dominated the precursor circuit and the name behind that script is as worthy as ever given his contributions to the medium over the years. I’m not particularly a fan of this slate. One script is an […]

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I’m a big crybaby

Posted by · 7:25 pm · June 17th, 2010

Pixar’s “Toy Story 3” reduced me to mush, just like it has untold numbers of critics across the nation.  I’m so excited to see that 2010 has already seen two top-notch animated features, and a few of those still to come look intriguing to say the least.  But this one took a formula, injected it […]

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Lasseter on his Disney ups and downs

Posted by · 12:29 pm · June 5th, 2009

Total Film has done a notably thorough interview with John Lasseter, which takes the form of a chronological tour through the animation maven and “Toy Story” director’s career. It’s a fascinating read, particularly if you, like me, are not entirely au fait with the early history of Pixar and computer animation. I hadn’t realized how […]

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Writing the silences

Posted by · 3:14 pm · February 14th, 2009

Hard as it may be to believe, it seems there are a lot of people in and around the industry who don’t fully understand what a screenplay is — who think that ‘writing’ equals ‘dialogue.’ This makes it all the more laudable that the Academy’s writing branch recognised “WALL-E,” a film that hinges, of course, […]

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2/12 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:16 am · February 12th, 2009

(Kind of quiet out there…) • David Carr addresses the “some stars won’t walk the red carpet” talk, slams fashionistas as being “pilot fish on a big whale.”  Ooooooohhhhh. [The Carpetbagger] • Rebecca Ascher-Walsh talks to double nominee Kate Winslet. [The Envelope] • Dave Karger says it’s Harvey vs. Miramax in the ladies’ acting fields. […]

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2/7 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:17 am · February 7th, 2009

• Rochona Majumdar and Satyam Khanna discuss the “Slumdog Millionaire” controversy. [NPR] • Kim Voynar spotlights the Best Director category. [Movie City News] • David Poland spends 30 minutes with “WALL-E” writer and director Andrew Stanton. [The Hot Blog] • Five Oscar night surprises Mark Lisanti would like to see. [Little Gold Men] • Searchlight […]

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Best Original Screenplay: The case for ‘WALL-E’

Posted by · 10:36 am · February 4th, 2009

I think it was some smart person on Nat Rogers’ most recent podcast who remarked that if you really want to get a picture of what was going on cinematically in any given year, you’d be better off bypassing Oscar’s Best Picture category and heading straight for the Best Original Screenplay nominees – a category […]

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SANTA BARBARA: Writers talk writing, Cruz walks the red carpet

Posted by · 11:38 am · January 25th, 2009

Yesterday was another busy event day for the Santa Barbara fest.  It was a shame the Director’s Panel was canceled, but participant Andrew Stanton switched gears to join Robert Knott (“Appaloosa”), Tom McCarthy (“The Visitor”) and Dustin Lance Black (“Milk”) for an Anne Thompson-moderated discussion on their work at the keyboard this year. It was […]

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Santa Barbara heats up

Posted by · 5:29 pm · January 22nd, 2009

The air smells cleaner.  The sound of waves crashing outside the hotel room is soothing.  The hippies are dancing in the streets. It’s nice to get away from the mess of this morning and the frustration of Oscar season in general for eight days.  But the awards circuit isn’t out of sight by any means.  […]

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Guessing the DGA

Posted by · 9:56 am · January 7th, 2009

So, with SAG, PGA and ASC out of the way, and with WGA still to come in a matter of hours, I guess it’s worth mentioning that the big daddy guild is announcing tomorrow: the Directors Guild of America (DGA).  Now’s as good a time as any to take a stab at guessing the nominees… […]

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In the round

Posted by · 5:59 pm · November 20th, 2008

I don’t know why exactly, but the “roundtable” format of interviews that crops up a lot during awards season often strikes me as rather less fascinating than it’s meant to be. Unless the panel is very smartly chosen, I find the discussion tends to veer towards back-patting and faintly smug in-jokery, rather than stimulating argument […]

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Best Original Screenplay: beyond the obvious

Posted by · 8:11 am · September 21st, 2008

Everyone has a favourite Oscar category, and Best Original Screenplay is mine. It’s partly because I’m a screenwriter myself, so I feel a little more invested in the outcome. My evaluation of the category often comes down to the question: “Which screenplay do I most wish I’d written first?” More importantly, however, it’s the category […]

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Breakthrough for Hawkins and Franco

Posted by · 4:41 pm · September 16th, 2008

As regular readers may know, I’ve been yammering on about a Best Actress nomination for “Happy-Go-Lucky”‘s delightful Sally Hawkins since I reviewed the film back in April. So I’m pleased to see that Hawkins will receive the Breakthrough Actress award at next month’s Hollywood Film Awards. As I said when they named their crafts honorees […]

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Loving from a distance

Posted by · 2:02 am · July 18th, 2008

Well, “WALL-E” finally lands in the UK today, and this weekend I’ll be able to evaluate it for myself at last. (But hey, at least we got “Mamma Mia!” first. Score!) I am always a bit nervous about approaching something that’s been praised to the skies so far in advance of my own interpretation – […]

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Revisiting ‘Nemo’

Posted by · 4:47 pm · July 17th, 2008

I still haven’t made it out to see “WALL-E” since returning to the States, but today I thought I’d pop “Finding Nemo” into the player and soak up some of that old Andrew Stanton goodness in the meantime.  And it really does stand-up as the most sensational entry in Pixar’s steadily increasing portfolio. Back in […]

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