12/1 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Timberlake’s campaign, Portman’s weight loss and unused Ledger footage

Posted by · 8:30 am · December 1st, 2010

• Rumors fly concerning Heath Ledger’s Joker making an appearance in “The Dark Knight Rises” via unused footage from “The Dark Knight.” (Not gonna happen.) [Stuff.co.nz] • Does Natalie Portman’s “Black Swan” weight loss mean Oscar gold? [Movieline] • David Poland sits down with “Get Low” screenwriters Chris Provenzano and C. Gaby Mitchell. [The Hot […]

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THE LISTS: Top 10 performances in Christopher Nolan films

Posted by · 10:25 am · July 13th, 2010

The word of the day Friday will most certainly be “Inception,” as casually interested movie-goers and anxious fanboys alike line up to take in Christopher Nolan’s latest effort. Now, I have suggested in this space that the film’s ensemble is an organic one, alive and driven.  And that the performances are separately less than their […]

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FRIDAY FORECAST: 72 degrees and ‘Avatar’

Posted by · 11:26 am · February 5th, 2010

*All historical figures cited are adjusted to today’s dollars. “Avatar” has swept aside the entire January schedule with relative ease and is aiming for an eighth weekend at the top of the box office. Considering it dropped only 10% last week despite some direct male competition from Mel Gibson and it now has 9 Oscar […]

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Call it, friendo

Posted by · 12:12 am · January 15th, 2010

Yesterday, Kris pointed you to Gregory Ellwood’s report on various Oscarcast developments, most of which either elicited a “wait and see” response from me or went over my head completely. (As a very old man of 26, I confess to having only a hazy grasp of who Taylor Lautner actually is. But I very much […]

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The Great Performances: 2005

Posted by · 5:07 pm · December 18th, 2009

2005 was the year of Heath Ledger’s beautiful, moving performance in “Brokeback Mountain,” which I saw for the first time in Toronto.  It instantly became the talk of the festival, and the film became the one to beat for the Academy Award. Ledger was astonishing as the taciturn cowboy who is more surprised than anybody […]

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8/28 Web Round-up

Posted by · 8:13 am · August 28th, 2009

• “Avatar”-izing James Cameron’s past characters. [MTV Movies Blog] • Following “The Hurt Locker,” Kathryn Bigelow aiming for a similar visceral style for “Triple Frontier.” [The Playlist] • Joseph Gordon-Levitt: the new Heath Ledger? [The Guardian]

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Great performers at their best

Posted by · 7:50 am · August 21st, 2009

After spending some time this summer watching some excellent films on DVD, I was inspired to write this piece about the great actors’ (living, with one exception) greatest performances. Narrowing it down to one each (brutal, believe me), I think have come up with a list of actors, young and old, that represents some of […]

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‘The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus’ UK trailer

Posted by · 1:20 am · August 8th, 2009

Sorry for the run of lazy posts, but I know a lot of you have been champing at the bit for this one. Make of it what you will … there appears to be more than enough quirk and baroque visual clutter here to keep the Gilliamites in thrall. (Oddly enough, I just passed through […]

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Gilliam talks completing ‘Parnassus’ without Ledger and his defining film moment

Posted by · 11:45 am · August 5th, 2009

At Comic-Con last month, Motion/Captured’s Drew McWeeny was fortunate enough to sit down with director Terry Gilliam for a solid 60 minutes, allowing the conversation to drift from actors like Johnny Depp and Brad Pitt to the Criterion Collection to Gilliam’s latest, the still domestic distributor-less “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus” and everything in between. […]

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The Heath Ledger-directed music video for Modest Mouse’s ‘King Rat’

Posted by · 10:45 am · August 4th, 2009

One of the question marks left dangling after the untimely passing of Heath Ledger in January of 2008 was the music video for Modest Mouse’s “King Rat.”  Conceived by the late actor, the video seemed to be lost to the winds as the band, understandably, didn’t want to be seen as capitalizing on the star’s […]

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‘Parnassus’ causes much head-scratching at Cannes

Posted by · 9:28 am · May 22nd, 2009

It was always a safe bet that, in spite of the curiosity value of Heath Ledger’s final screen performance, Terry Gilliam’s “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus” wasn’t cut out to be a crowdpleaser. It’s been over a decade since the defiantly eccentric filmmaker made anything approaching the term “accessible,” much less something widely liked. And […]

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Gilliam wants “another award for Heath”

Posted by · 6:46 am · May 14th, 2009

It may not be in the Competition lineup, but Terry Gilliam’s “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus” is surely one of the most eagerly — and curiously — awaited films of the Cannes festival. The bulk of the interest, of course, rests on the unfinished final screen performance of Heath Ledger, and how (or, indeed, if) […]

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Troubling details of Nolan’s ‘Shadow of the Bat’ revealed

Posted by · 12:34 am · April 1st, 2009

I really don’t know what to say about this.  I understand Christopher Nolan is a progressive artist, a guy who understands both the necessity of shunning convention and the idea that what one may expect isn’t always the best solution.  He’s proven it time and again with the films in his re-booted Batman franchise, starting […]

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Stay cool

Posted by · 4:16 pm · March 27th, 2009

Over a month after Sean Penn defeated Mickey Rourke in what was possibly the tightest acting race in recent memory, Cinematical’s Jeffrey Anderson has come up with an interesting take on how the outcome may actually benefit Rourke, and indeed “The Wrestler.” In short, he says, losing the Oscar allows them to retain their edge: […]

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Ledger-directed music video set for release

Posted by · 1:05 pm · March 18th, 2009

From the AP: A Modest Mouse music video directed by the late Heath Ledger is set for release this year. A spokeswoman for the band says Ledger directed an animated video for “King Rat,” a track off the band’s 2007 album, “We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank.” Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock collaborated […]

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Great point

Posted by · 11:12 am · February 27th, 2009

This would’ve been a great opportunity: If Nicholson were a supporting-actor presenter and spoke about Heath Ledger’s performance as the Joker. Longtime Oscar hound Wayman Wong to Tom O’Neil in O’Neil’s recent Gold Derby blog entry on the conspicuous absence of Jack Nicholson from Sunday’s Oscar telecast.

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He’s with them in spirit

Posted by · 6:38 am · February 23rd, 2009

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‘Slumdog’ takes 8 trophies as Oscar keeps it under 190 minutes

Posted by · 8:59 pm · February 22nd, 2009

In the final analysis, there isn’t much to say other than: What a captivating way to put a bow on the worst and, ultimately, most boring Oscar season of all time.  The 81st annual Academy Awards swiftly went down earlier this evening with few surprise winners and a classy new sheen.  It was captivating and, […]

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