In praise of the modern movie soundtrack

Posted by · 7:41 am · August 5th, 2011

I generally try to ignore film opinion pieces I think are fundamentally misguided — à chacun son goût and all that, plus the fact that fighting one mind is generally more trouble than it’s worth — but Ben Walsh’s idle article in The Independent today on the supposed demise of the movie soundtrack does such […]

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An open letter to James Franco

Posted by · 4:32 pm · February 28th, 2011

Dear James, So you don’t think much of the Academy. That’s okay. A lot of us don’t. And after the outcome of last night’s awards — in which capping an inevitable Best Picture Oscar for the safe, stolid stylings of “The King’s Speech” with that extraneous Best Director win for a worried-looking Tom Hooper was […]

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OSCAR TALK: Ep. 55 — Special Edition! — Oscars postmortem

Posted by · 1:03 pm · February 28th, 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: Sun came up

Posted by · 9:11 am · February 28th, 2011

Steven Spielberg couldn’t have put it more concisely during his presentation of the Best Picture category last night.  To paraphrase, he noted that whichever films did not happen to win Best Picture this year would join the ranks of numerous classics of the medium. Was it preemptive damage control?  I hope not.  Why be apologetic?  […]

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2/17 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Leo’s faux pas, Bagger chats up ‘Waste Land’ helmer, what to learn from Grammys

Posted by · 10:18 am · February 17th, 2011

• Nikki Finke chats with Relativity Media honcho Ryan Kavanaugh. [Deadline] • Gregory Ellwood thinks Melissa Leo flushed her chances at an Oscar down the drain. [Awards Campaign] • Melena Ryzik catches up with “Waste Land” director Lucy Walker. (Oscar Guide on documentary features coming tomorrow.) [The Carpetbagger]

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OSCAR GUIDE: Best Music (Original Score)

Posted by · 10:39 am · February 16th, 2011

Recently the International Film Music Critics Association were the last critics group to offer their (specialized) thoughts on the 2010 film year. The announcement made for an interesting counter to the year in score awardage. And the eventual nominees for Best Original Score reflected, if nothing else, a continued break with tradition. The music branch […]

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Desplat leads International Film Music Critics nods

Posted by · 10:18 am · February 11th, 2011

Alexandre Desplat has enjoyed a brilliant career in U.S. features as of late (on the back of immense talent, naturally).  2010 was a grand year for the composer as he, once again, balanced scoring duties on a number of notable films. Today, the final announcement from the critics awards circuit has landed in the form […]

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2/10 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: ‘Gasland’ director fires back, Wahlberg/Russell on Aronofsky, hoping Banksy stays away

Posted by · 9:00 am · February 10th, 2011

• Mark Wahlberg and David O. Russell on Darren Aronofsky’s departure from “The Fighter.” [Inside Movies] • Eric Kohn writes up the Oscar shorts. [indieWIRE] • Josh Fox fires back at gas industry accusations about the accuracy of his documentary, “Gasland.” [Facebook]

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The Bagger in-studio with Reznor/Ross

Posted by · 11:53 am · February 3rd, 2011

A little difficult not to be totally envious of Melena Ryzik’s recent trip to Trent Reznor’s crib/studio to talk “The Social Network” with the Nine Inch Nails front man and his composing partner, Atticus Ross:

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TECH SUPPORT: Final analysis, part one

Posted by · 8:57 am · January 20th, 2011

It seems hard to believe that it’s been more than six months since I wrote this year’s introductory Tech Support column ( a dissection of the art direction race). Much has changed since then, naturally, as we are less than a week away from the big day when we find out the nominees for the […]

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In praise of Reznor/Ross

Posted by · 8:44 am · January 19th, 2011

This year’s Best Original Score race really has me at a loss.  I freely admit that I have no idea what will happen there.  Some days I think we’ll get a small surprise like Alexandre Desplat sliding in for his best work this year in “The Ghost Writer,” others I think we could just get […]

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1/10 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Bridges didn’t give a bleep, Reznor on ‘Tattoo,’ Is Portman overexposed?

Posted by · 8:03 am · January 10th, 2011

• Joel Coen says Jeff Bridges didn’t give a BLEEP about living up to John Wayne’s legacy in “True Grit.” [The Race] • Trent Reznor discusses his next scoring gig: David Fincher’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” [The Playlist] • Gregg Kilday writes up the Best Picture race as he sees it. [Hollywood Reporter]

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TECH SUPPORT INTERVIEW: The construction of ‘The Social Network’

Posted by · 12:28 pm · January 6th, 2011

One of the immediately striking things about Aaron Sorkin’s screenplay for “The Social Network” is its assemblage, the manner in which he chose to tell the story with cascading elements of the narrative. And when you bring on a meticulous craftsman like David Fincher to direct a film already detailed in its larval stage, you […]

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77 scores competing for Oscar, ‘Toy Story 3’ not among them

Posted by · 5:20 am · December 30th, 2010

They may have enjoyed a three-year run of nominations in the category, finally taking the gold with “Up” earlier this year, but Pixar’s hot streak in Best Original Score will not continue at the 2010 Oscars. Although Randy Newman’s “Toy Story 3” score wasn’t ruled ineligible by the Academy — unlike his work on last […]

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11/30 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Nolan circling back, Carpetbagger returns, debating Oscarcast hosts

Posted by · 7:34 am · November 30th, 2010

• Composers Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross and sound mixer Ren Klyce talk “The Social Network. [SoundWorks Collection] • Patrick Goldstein catches up with the idea that the new Disney is pushing hard for “Toy Story 3,” deems it “crazy,” but smartly warns against chafing. [The Big Picture] • Christopher Nolan circles back around as […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Best Original Score — Volume II

Posted by · 12:35 pm · November 12th, 2010

A great score can take a film from memorable to unforgettable.  Whether it be Vangelis’s synthesizer on the beach in “Chariots of Fire,” Nino Rota’s haunting waltz from “The Godfather” or John Williams’s blaring, adventurous march from “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” scores can elevate amazing images to bring the director’s vision to even greater […]

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10/29 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: O’Barry biopic on the way, stumping for Bell in ‘Exorcism,’ Reznor talks ‘Network’ synth

Posted by · 8:51 am · October 29th, 2010

• Across the pond, Deborah Orr on a 15 rating due to harmless swearing weighing down an uplifting film like “Made in Dagenham.” [The Guardian] • A feature biopic is in the works about “The Cove” activist Ric O’Barry. [Deadline] • The deadline for animated feature submission nears. [Oscars.org]

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9/30 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Blind-siding Christians with ‘Secretariat,’ chatting up Gibney and Reznor, Armond strikes

Posted by · 9:02 am · September 30th, 2010

• David Poland sits down with “Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer” director Alex Gibney. [Movie City News] • On the innovative marketing strategy of “Freakonomics.” [New York Times] • Xan Brooks and Henry Barnes talk “Made in Dagenham” director Nigel Cole and actress Rosamund Pike. [The Guardian]

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