TECH SUPPORT INTERVIEW: Composer symposium, part two

Posted by · 1:22 pm · February 26th, 2010

I think everyone who has seen Pixar’s “Up” was utterly taken by the scene “Married Life,” where emotions ran high and three characters were built between images and music.  As Kris mentioned in this morning’s Oscar Guide, composer Michael Giacchino had the full aural attention of the audience for 10 minutes. Speaking to Giacchino, it’s […]

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OSCAR GUIDE: Best Music (Original Score)

Posted by · 11:26 am · February 26th, 2010

For years the composers of the music branch tended to be a bit insular. Impressive newcomer talent was often ignored while the usual suspects showed up year after year. Not long ago, there seemed to be a shift, yielding slates much like the one we have for 2009. There is one first-timer, but other nominees […]

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OSCAR GUIDE: Best Animated Feature Film

Posted by · 9:19 am · February 8th, 2010

This year’s Best Animated Feature Film race featured five nominees for just the second time in the category’s existence.  It was the result of a robust slate of qualifying contenders that reached the magic number of 16, and yet there was still quality work left lying in the also-rans pile. There was a wide open […]

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‘Up’ triumphs at Annie Awards

Posted by · 5:42 am · February 7th, 2010

Last year, the industry-voted Annie Awards appeared to have entered a peculiar grudge match with Pixar Studios, as eventual Oscar-winner “WALL-E” came away empty-handed, while “Kung Fu Panda” swept the board. Whether that curious outcome was the result of peer envy or professional preference, the Annies appear to be back on board with Pixar, as […]

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2/1 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:05 am · February 1st, 2010

• Pete Hammond reports from on the ground at Saturday night’s DGA awards. [Notes on a Season] • Dave McNary from the angle of each nominee’s speech detailing the need for maintaining believability in their films. [Variety] • On the heels of Kathryn Bigelow’s big win, Kira Cochrane wonders why there are so few female […]

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My dream ballot: part one

Posted by · 7:32 pm · January 31st, 2010

As I did last year, I’m preparing for Tuesday’s announcement of the Oscar nominations by running through my own favorites in each category — following on from the ideal ballots posted by Kris and Chad in the past few weeks. “Preparing” isn’t quite the word: it implies a link between the processes of predicting and […]

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Mark Harris on Zoe Saldana and performance capture

Posted by · 9:24 am · January 27th, 2010

Perhaps I missed it, but I’m surprised there hasn’t been more online conversation about EW writer Mark Harris’s recent critical essay on “Avatar” and performance capture technology.As one would expect from the author of “Pictures at a Revolution,” it’s a thoughtful piece, but one that should stir up considerable dissent. He begins by slamming James […]

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1/22 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:46 am · January 22nd, 2010

• Nikki Finke says Oscarcast producers may be secretly considering a third host. [Deadline Hollywood Daily] • Julian Sancton talks to the brilliant (and all but forgotten this season) Anthony Mackie. [Little Gold Men] • Davis Guggenheim’s education crisis documentary “Waiting for Superman” is Sundance’s first pick-up. [The Wrap]

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‘Fox’ vs. ‘Up’

Posted by · 1:09 pm · January 12th, 2010

I can’t help but wonder if there are some hard-working publicists out there getting in the ear of a few people, since we’ve had two pieces in as many days calling the race for Best Animated Feature a potential upset waiting to happen. Anyway, first, at The New York Times, Brooks Barnes uses LAFCA and […]

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ACE nominees

Posted by · 7:23 pm · January 11th, 2010

For me, “District 9” is the biggest and most pleasant surprise for me in this morning’s American Cinema Editors announcement.  If ever the film looked like a lock for a Best Picture nomination, now is that time, I have to say.  Getting in over presumed Oscar frontrunners “Precious” and, most especially, “Inglourious Basterds,” that’s a […]

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Buried treasures: Chad’s best of 2009 (list and ballot)

Posted by · 5:32 pm · January 8th, 2010

Unlike Kris, I can’t quite come to the conclusion that 2009 was the best year of the decade. Nor can I call it the “year of the woman,” the “best year for animation” or “the year James Cameron brought a sense of wonder back to the cinema.” The only thing I can personally label 2009 […]

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“Dull, dull, dull”

Posted by · 10:42 am · December 29th, 2009

As is usually the case when British outlets offer Oscar analysis, there are few fresh insights to be found in Jeremy Kay’s assessment of the current race in today’s Guardian. Well, there is his unusual offhand assertion that “Fantastic Mr. Fox” and “Star Trek” are locked-in Best Picture nominees, with “Julie & Julia” and “The […]

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12/18 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 8:52 am · December 18th, 2009

• Anne Thompson reports that there is no “official” costume designer on “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” so anyone holding out longshot hope for its Oscar chances in that field can go ahead and focus elsewhere. [Thompson on Hollywood] • Melena Ryzik gets Ivan Reitman to admit “The Hangover” would be on his top 10 list. [The […]

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If I had a ballot

Posted by · 12:04 pm · December 16th, 2009

Every year I like to keep track of personal favorites throughout the Academy’s designated categories (plus one of my own addition, Best Ensemble). At the end of the year, my “if I had a ballot” post is the result. Of course, for the most part, I follow Academy designations here. If something is ruled ineligible, […]

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‘Hurt Locker’ keeps it going with NYFCC

Posted by · 10:07 am · December 14th, 2009

The New York Film Critics Circle decided not to announce its list of winners in real time this year, which is a shame because it has always been one of my favorite aspects of the season.  What we’re left with is scattered press release reveals, Twitterers scooping the group’s info as emails and phone calls […]

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‘Hurt Locker’ tops with LA Critics

Posted by · 3:08 pm · December 13th, 2009

Today is a very good day to be one Ms. Kathryn Bigelow. A few days ago, we asked you which film looks set to be the critics’ darling of the season — today, at least, the clear answer appears to be “The Hurt Locker.” Hours after sweeping the board with the Beantown crowd, Bigelow’s Iraq-set […]

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THE LONG SHOT: Cartoon network

Posted by · 7:56 pm · December 9th, 2009

As the year winds down, and critics and entertainment journalists search for neat blanket tags with which to label the year that was, “the year of animation” is a phrase that is getting increasingly bandied about – some going so far as to declare 2009 the greatest year of all time for animated product. (Certainly, […]

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LA Times shines light on notable 2009 composers

Posted by · 6:56 am · December 9th, 2009

LA Times music critic Todd Martens has posted a useful series of short interviews with the men behind some of the year’s most distinctive film scores. Indeed, it’s group of five names that isn’t too hard to imagine mirroring the year’s eventual Oscar slate: Alexandre Desplat for “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” Michael Giacchino for “Up,” Randy […]

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