In Contention

OFF THE CARPET: The great, appreciated unknown

Posted by · 5:47 pm · September 19th, 2011

As we move out of the Toronto fray, Venice and Telluride already a memory, we look to the season ahead. The starting gun echo of those three early fall festivals is beginning to fade away, and with the dust settled or settling, it’s interesting to note the lack of an inarguable emerging player. In fact, […]

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CINEJABBER: Just enjoy the show

Posted by · 3:15 pm · September 17th, 2011

So, it’s been a big week of announcements here at In Contention, and next week, a bigger week of changes. The current plan is to have the new digs off the ground on Tuesday, so we’ll have Monday to say our goodbyes. But it occurred to me I haven’t offered up a Cinejabber space for […]

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OSCAR TALK: Ep. 61 — Wrapping up Toronto, ‘Moneyball’ and Brad Pitt’s Oscar positioning, Roland Emmerich’s ‘Anonymous,’ ‘Rampart’ and turning out the lights

Posted by · 8:53 am · September 16th, 2011

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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9/14 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Plays storm the screen in Toronto, Liddell acquires ‘Killer Joe,’ Barker on Calley

Posted by · 7:30 am · September 14th, 2011

• Michelle Kung writes up Toronto from the perspective of plays taking to the screen en masse, like Tracy Letts’s “Killer Joe”… [Speakeasy] • …which Liddell Entertainment, by the way, picked up at the fest. [Variety] • Sasha Stone on life after the 2011 fall festival circuit. [Awards Daily]

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The writing shines in dense and rewarding ‘Moneyball’

Posted by · 11:53 am · September 13th, 2011

Bennett Miller’s “Moneyball” is a tightly constructed piece of work, thematically layered, rich in substance, hard work from two of the best writers in the business clearly evident. And the last thing it is is a sports movie. The film is about so much. It’s a David vs. Goliath story of changing the status quo. […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Strong year for double-dippers

Posted by · 8:58 am · September 12th, 2011

We find ourselves right in the middle of the big Toronto press junket, er, film festival, where 200-plus films are landing, many of them as world premieres, and the landscape of this year’s Oscar race is really beginning to take shape. As I looked out at the various films in play this year, it suddenly […]

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9/12 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Clooney on self-competition, Woodley ready for her close-up, genre movies at the Oscars

Posted by · 8:03 am · September 12th, 2011

• Bill Desowitz calls “The Lion King 3D,” which hits theaters Friday, “a noteworthy achievement for post-converting hand-drawn animation.” Agreed. He also talks to those responsible for it. [Thompson on Hollywood] • Clooney: Clooney vs. Cooney just hype. [Variety] • Shailene Woodley, meanwhile, is ready for her close-up in Toronto. [The Guardian]

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(UPDATED) ‘Moneyball’ reviews fire the Toronto starting gun

Posted by · 9:23 am · September 8th, 2011

Okay, not reviews, plural. Not yet. The only reaction I’m finding for Bennett Miller’s “Moneyball” (which screened here in LA a few times despite the usual studio falsehood — “we don’t have any screenings set right now” — typical) is Jeff Wells’s take at Hollywood Elsewhere. And it’s a glowing assessment, to say the least. […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Fall fests look to boost early Oscar hopes

Posted by · 9:00 am · August 29th, 2011

On a warm Saturday afternoon in Telluride last year, I sat in the crowded Chuck Jones Cinema and felt the warmth in the room as Tom Hooper’s “The King’s Speech” screened for its first audience of the year. Six months later, at the end of a road with plenty of twists and turns, the film’s […]

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Telluride guessing game

Posted by · 10:34 am · July 28th, 2011

(UPDATED: 8/29) Now that the Toronto and Venice line-ups have been unveiled (though we have a few more Toronto announcements to come), I figured I’d take a few stabs at sussing out the Telluride crop this year. I haven’t been a good journalist and called around or anything. Just spinning my wheels. One studio that […]

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‘Descendants,’ ‘Moneyball,’ ‘Twixt’ among Toronto premieres

Posted by · 10:00 am · July 26th, 2011

As usual, there are few surprises in the newly unveiled lineup for September’s Toronto Film Festival — which is largely because, as usual, the lineup consists of pretty much everything. We know by now to expect a cherry-picked selection of proven successes from previous festivals, including Cannes (“The Artist,” “Drive,” “We Need to Talk About […]

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‘Moneyball’ poster

Posted by · 11:35 am · July 24th, 2011

I’m still in a bit of wait-and-see mode on “Moneyball.” It could be an awards play, it could just be a bit of bankability in the fall movie season, but I do dig the one-sheet that hit the net this week. The trailer hit last month. Check out the full poster after the jump.

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‘Moneyball’ trailer

Posted by · 11:09 am · June 16th, 2011

Yesterday there was an Entertainment Tonight sneak peek at the trailer for Bennett Miller’s

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First look at ‘Moneyball’ via ET

Posted by · 10:53 am · June 15th, 2011

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INTERVIEW: Steven Soderbergh

Posted by · 10:14 am · September 18th, 2009

Toronto Film Festival Steven Soderbergh freely admits how much luck has played into his career, beginning with winning the coveted Palme d’Or at Cannes in 1989, the victory that launched his career and his first major work, “sex, lies and videotape.” “First of all the film was not supposed to be part of the competition […]

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7/31 Web Round-up

Posted by · 8:03 am · July 31st, 2009

• Rose Byrne, leading lady at last. [Daily Telegraph] • More on the story that won’t go away as the “Moneyball” drama spills into the pages of Vanity Fair. [Hollywood Elsewhere] • Stephanie Zacharek wonders whether the “Judd Apatow moment” might be over. [Salon]

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7/14 Web Round-up

Posted by · 6:46 am · July 14th, 2009

• Who dropped the “Moneyball?” [CNN] • Steven Soderbergh can see the end of his career. [The Guardian] • Michael Adams talks to filmmaker Mick Garris about the all-but-forgotten 1997 short film “Ghosts,” starring Michael Jackson. [Movieline] • Need a “Green Lantern” primer?  Here’s a good one. [Empire]

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7/13 Web Round-up

Posted by · 9:24 am · July 13th, 2009

• Gael Garcia Bernal: activist. [Daily Telegraph] • Phil de Semlyen chats it up with Bruno. [Empire] • Michael Powell goes deep on “Golden Age” survivor Andrew Sarris. [New York Times] • Mike Jones profiles the child actors of Harry Potter, wonders if their fame can last beyond Hogwarts. [The independent]

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