Almodovar tapped as Guest Director for AFI Fest

Posted by · 8:28 am · August 29th, 2011

The press release, in part: American Film Institute (AFI) announced today that internationally acclaimed filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar will serve as its Guest Artistic Director at AFI FEST 2011 presented by Audi. AFI FEST — celebrating its 25th year in 2011 — will take place November 3 through 10 in Hollywood, California at the historic Chinese […]

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SHORT TAKE: “The Skin I Live In” (***)

Posted by · 8:24 am · May 21st, 2011

Cannes Film Festival Pedro Almodóvar’s new feature opens with a pause: a beautiful young woman holds a tricky yoga position, her already fine-lathed physique vacuumed into a nude body stocking, stretched across a couch like a pale side of meat hung out for curing. So so taut, so fragile, it seems a simple tap on […]

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OSCAR TALK: Ep. 56 — Special Edition! — Cannes so far, ‘Tree of Life,’ Von Trier, taking the 2011 awards pulse

Posted by · 8:32 am · May 20th, 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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OFF THE CARPET: Setting the field

Posted by · 7:44 am · May 2nd, 2011

It’s a strange feeling writing about this kind of thing after last night’s news announcement. But that chapter is finally behind us, so behind us it shall remain. This is not an Oscar column (even though it’s labeled as such). This is not a predictions column. This isn’t even really a column. We should all […]

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CANNES CHECK: ‘The Skin I Live In’

Posted by · 10:05 am · April 20th, 2011

[This is the first in a daily series of posts, wherein I size up the 19 films–pending further additions–in the Competition at next month’s Cannes Film Festival. We’re running through them alphabetically, by director, so it just happens that we start with a biggie: the length of the entries will vary according to the availability […]

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Cannes competition includes Malick, Almodóvar, von Trier

Posted by · 3:06 am · April 14th, 2011

After weeks of speculation, this year’s Cannes lineup was unveiled in spectacularly long-winded fashion by fest director Thierry Frémaux this morning. (French TV networks clearly got so bored with his sidebar discussions on each title he announced that they helpfully cut to commercial halfway through the press conference.) Anyway, the speculation was largely borne out […]

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Robert De Niro to head Cannes jury

Posted by · 7:19 am · January 6th, 2011

Sure, that Cecil B. DeMille Award at the upcoming Golden Globes is nice enough, but this is the greater honour. Robert De Niro has been selected as the president of the competition jury at this year’s Cannes Film Festival in May — the third time this most European of festivals has tapped an American for the […]

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Bring on spring already

Posted by · 6:39 pm · December 8th, 2010

Okay, I know we’re all jacked up for the next few months of awards-watching, but would anyone mind if we just fast-forwarded straight to May? I’ll miss the Oscars, but frankly, the winter freeze is getting me down, the movies have petered out, and then I read a Cannes-teasing tweet like this from the ever […]

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Sony adds Almodóvar’s ‘Skin’ to 2011 slate

Posted by · 12:24 pm · September 16th, 2010

No surprise at all, this, given that Sony Pictures Classics has distributed Pedro Almodóvar’s last five features in the US, but the specialty outfit has already started beefing up next year’s prestige lineup by acquiring the Spanish auteur’s next outing, “The Skin That I Inhabit.” We first reported on the film, which is currently in […]

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Almodóvar and Banderas, together again

Posted by · 9:02 am · May 5th, 2010

Speaking as we just were of actors returning from the wilderness, when was the last time Antonio Banderas starred in a film you had any interest in seeing? (Talk to the hand if your answer contains the word “Shrek.”) From strained paycheck jobs like “My Mom’s New Boyfriend” to gruesomely botched prestige projects like “The […]

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‘Hurt Locker’ takes top honors at Critics’ Choice Awards

Posted by · 1:37 am · January 16th, 2010

The BFCA are rarely ones to take an individual stand on the awards trail, and such was the case last night, as they mostly stuck with Oscar frontrunners down the line. In the numbers stakes,  “Avatar” (with six awards) and “Inglourious Basterds” (with three) came out on top. But it was “The Hurt Locker” that […]

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1/5 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 8:28 am · January 5th, 2010

• Pedro Almodovar tells Pete Hammond that he isn’t down with Spain’s process for deciding its annual Oscar contender.  Ya think? [Notes on a Season] • “The Hurt Locker” tops Stephen King’s otherwise singular (and bizarre) top 10 list. [Entertainment Weekly] • Steve Pond runs down eligibility numbers per category. [The Odds]

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11/23 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 7:23 am · November 23rd, 2009

• Dave Karger cusses with “Fantastic Mr. Fox” star Bill Murray. [Oscar Watch] • Owen Gleiberman whines about the snubbing of inferior documentaries, fails to recognize the solid slate of short-listed films we ended up with. [Entertainment Weekly] • Nicolas Rapold talks to the principals of “The Last Station.” [New York Times]

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OFF THE CARPET: Original players

Posted by · 2:44 pm · November 16th, 2009

When I had the unmitigated gall last week to project a set of winners for this year’s Oscar race, I was a bit startled at how easy Mark Boal’s script for “The Hurt Locker” slid into the Best Original Screenplay slot.  Looking over the landscape of contenders in the category, it’s a little obvious why […]

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Almodóvar, Tarantino to present at Oscars, five-presenter system scrapped

Posted by · 9:09 am · November 16th, 2009

A few weeks ago, The Film Experience’s Nathaniel Rogers invited alternative presenter ideas for next year’s Academy Awards ceremony. Among the suggestions I made was a more diverse roster of recognizable filmmakers deemed worthy of presenter status, naming Pedro Almodóvar as an example. Once again, Oscarcast producers Bill Mechanic and Adam Shankman and I seem […]

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11/16 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 8:03 am · November 16th, 2009

• Catch video highlights of Saturday night’s Honorary Oscars celebration. [Oscars.org] • Baltimore Ravens OT Michael Oher on his life’s inspiration for Hollywood. [CNN] • Hoping “Avatar” is the new face of filmmaking. [Los Angeles Times]

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THE LONG SHOT: Don’t look back in anger

Posted by · 2:20 pm · November 11th, 2009

For all the movement in the awards game this week – Jeff Bridges leap-frogging into contention, the animation race swelling to five nominees, “Precious” continuing to gather momentum – my head hasn’t really been in it this week. That’s partly because we’re all still making blind prognoses until four unseen juggernauts – “Nine,” “Avatar,” “The […]

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‘A Prophet’ dominates European Film Award nominations

Posted by · 7:19 am · November 7th, 2009

Is “A Prophet” gradually stealing awards-season momentum from “The White Ribbon?” (It’s the superior film, if you ask me.) Too soon to say, of course, but it certainly came out on top in this morning’s European Film Award nominations. Jacques Audiard’s searing chronicle of French prison gangs leads the field with six nominations, to four […]

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