Lifetime Achievement Awards for Deakins and Freeman

Posted by · 1:14 pm · October 11th, 2010

A pair to report.  First up, Morgan Freeman gets the AFI tribute treatment this year.  I wonder if we’ll get some quality discussion of his work with David Fincher on “Se7en.” The press release, in part: Morgan Freeman has been selected by the  American Film Institute’s (AFI) Board of Trustees to receive the 39th AFI […]

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‘Precious’ sweeps NAACP Image Awards

Posted by · 12:13 am · February 27th, 2010

Morgan Freeman also won.  If you’re so inclined, check out The Circuit for more.

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2/23 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 8:59 am · February 23rd, 2010

• Peter Knegt chats with Best Actor nominee Jeremy Renner. [indieWIRE] • Oscar party kits, anyone? With bingo! [Oscars.org] • “The Messenger” writers and Oscar nominees Oren Moverman and Alessandro Camon on their process. [MTV Movies Blog]

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OSCAR GUIDE: Best Actor

Posted by · 10:07 am · February 10th, 2010

The Best Actor category solidified pretty early on this year. I imagine the eventual line-up had slid into place as early as November, and after the Screen Actors Guild made things more official, the predictable race unfolded from there. What we have now is a typical mixture of seasoned veterans, solid industry players and newcomers […]

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How we did today (not bad) and a year out (not so much)

Posted by · 3:04 pm · February 2nd, 2010

I forgot to sit down and take a look at my year-in-advance predictions for this year and see how I did.  Not too great. In the Best Picture field (before the announcement of an expanded category, mind you), the only film I listed that made it through was “The Hurt Locker.” Kathryn Bigelow was also […]

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Actors’ beef with ‘Avatar’

Posted by · 12:44 pm · February 1st, 2010

Thanks to Scott Feinberg for pointing us to this Newsweek actors roundtable discussion of “Avatar,” which is certainly illuminating. Morgan Freeman says performance capture is “basically cartoons,” while a more diplomatic Bridges says, “What we do [as actors] is the ultimate special effect.”

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1/1 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:04 am · January 1st, 2010

Happy New Year! • Jeffrey Wells wants a Best Actress nomination for “Avatar” star Zoe Saldana. [Hollywood Elsewhere] • David Poland calls for the same, amid a number of other history-making Oscar moments that could be in the cards this season. [Movie City News] • Steve Pond finds a nifty way of revealing his top […]

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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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‘Air,’ ‘Basterds,’ ‘Precious’ lead the way with SAG

Posted by · 6:01 am · December 17th, 2009

There wasn’t much in the way of a surprise with this year’s Screen Actors Guild announcement.  The nods that are least likely to translate to Oscar, if I were a betting man, are Diane Kruger’s supporting actress bid for “Inglourious Basterds” and (I guess I just have a feeling) Matt Damon, supporting for “Invictus.” The […]

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The Great Performances: 2004

Posted by · 6:35 pm · December 11th, 2009

In Alexander Payne’s “Sideways,” Paul Giamatti gave the best performance by an actor in 2004, so said the New York Film Critics Circle, and how right they were.  So why, why, why was the actor denied an Oscar nomination?  Granted, it was a strong year, but his work was at the top of that heap […]

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Back off, Hollywood

Posted by · 10:39 am · December 8th, 2009

While South Africa’s currently high Hollywood profile is putting smiles on the faces (and much-needed cash in the pockets) of many figures in the country’s film industry, it appears that not all local actors are as pleased. The Guardian reports that a number of prominent local thesps have spoken out against the casting of bankable […]

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12/8 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 9:59 am · December 8th, 2009

• Reed Johnson sits down with “Invictus” director Clint Eastwood and star Morgan Freeman. [Los Angeles Times] • Eric D. Snider digs into the different perspectives on what makes a decade’s end. [Eric D. Snider] • Noah Forrest stumps for some low-lying contenders that need the help. [Movie City News]

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‘Up in the Air’ wins big at NBR

Posted by · 11:16 am · December 3rd, 2009

The real question with today’s National Board of Review announcement wasn’t who won, but who didn’t win. A couple of ties and a list of honorees that seemed to canvas the entire crop of filmmaking product from 2009 adds something of a diluted quality to the proceedings, I must say.  Of course, it is worth […]

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Freeman’s Mandela “less impersonation than incarnation”

Posted by · 8:34 am · December 3rd, 2009

It goes without saying that New York Times executive editor Bill Keller has a more informed perspective on Nelson Mandela than most of the critics currently assessing Clint Eastwood’s “Invictus.” Keller was, after all, the NYT’s Johannesburg bureau chief in the time that Mandela came to power. So it’s interesting — if not particularly meaningful […]

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REVIEW: “Invictus” (**)

Posted by · 8:41 am · November 30th, 2009

There’s really no arguing the fact that South Africa’s victory in the 1995 Rugby World Cup was an inspirational moment of collaborative triumph for a country healing the wounds of the past.  The occasion was an against-all-odds statement of progress and togetherness.  It announced to the world that a nation had chosen to look to […]

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Ansen gets first word on ‘Invictus’

Posted by · 11:08 am · November 26th, 2009

Apparently unfazed by embargos, Newsweek’s David Ansen has posted a short, mixed-to-positive review of “Invictus,” the meat of which is here: Invictus is not a biopic; nor does it take us deep inside any of its characters—Eastwood views Mandela from a respectful middle distance. It’s about strategic inspiration. We witness a politician at the top […]

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Preview?

Posted by · 8:16 am · November 16th, 2009

So yeah, I cropped poor Gordon Willis out of the photo to end up with the image to the right here, but I can’t help wondering whether it’ll be a familiar sight come March 7. Of course, some folks have their panties in a twist at the gall of predicting winners this early, so I […]

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The Great Performances: 2000

Posted by · 7:14 pm · November 13th, 2009

Michael Douglas was robbed. The already Oscar-christened actor gave a career-best performance in 2000 in Curtis Hanson’s “Wonder Boys,” but he got no love from the Academy. Worse, his performance was easily among the five best of the year and won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Best Actor prize. That having been said, I […]

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