The Playlist

Indie Horror Maven Ti West Talks 'The Innkeepers,' The "Grim" State Of Modern Horror & His Upcoming Sci-Fi Project

  • By Aaron Hillis
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  • February 2, 2012 2:21 PM
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It's strangely appropriate that the rising career of filmmaker Ti West hasn't quite been meteoric, if only because his indie horror features (five and counting, including "The House of the Devil" and his experimental sniper-in-the-woods thriller "Trigger Man") are known for their slow burn. Reverential to cinema past while shrewdly and artfully revitalizing tired horror tropes, West's naturalistic stories fit right into the wheelhouse of his producing mentor Larry Fessenden—whose Glass Eye Pix label has unleashed most of the 31-year-old filmmaker's projects, including his latest spooker, "The Innkeepers."

10 Breakout Filmmakers & Performers From The 2012 Sundance Film Festival

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 31, 2012 12:28 PM
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  • 6 Comments
One of the major benefits of Sundance has always been the new talent it's unleashed on the world. From Quentin Tarantino and Kevin Smith in the festival's heyday to more recent discoveries like Carey Mulligan, Jennifer Lawrence, Cary Fukunaga and Drake Doremus, the film world shifts ever so slightly each January as burgeoning filmmakers make their mark on the industry.

Sundance: James Marsh Talks 'Shadow Dancer,' Circling 'Tinker Tailor' & The Oscar Snub For 'The Interrupters' & 'Senna'

  • By John Lichman
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  • January 29, 2012 2:07 PM
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The culmination of James Marsh's slow-burn thriller “Shadow Dancer” is a change of color and a rather sudden spoiler engulfed in a fireball. But it's also another change in direction for the Oscar-winning director of “Man On Wire” and last year’s “Project Nim” that again displays the helmer’s versatility, as he moves between feature films and documentaries. And with his latest starring Clive Owen and Andrea Riseborough, Marsh once again gives viewers a rich world worth exploring, this time in Ireland during The Troubles.

Director Nicholas Jarecki Reveals How Being Kicked Off 'The Informers' Helped Fund Sundance Hit 'Arbitrage' & Casting Brit Marling Over Skype

  • By John Lichman
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  • January 27, 2012 11:01 AM
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Last year at Sundance, “Margin Call” premiered to an unprepared audience who were greeted by a fantastic ensemble in a gripping drama that gave an insight to the 2008 financial crisis and resulting recession. That film went on to become something of a sleeper hit, and last week, picked up an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay, but there's certainly much more to be said about the subject matter.

"It's Going To Be Boring": Zoe Saldana Tells Lies About 'Star Trek 2' & Talks Drama 'The Words' At Sundance

  • By John Lichman
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  • January 27, 2012 10:01 AM
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Two hours after Zoe Saldana wrapped for the day on the set of J.J. Abrams' upcoming “Star Trek” sequel, she arrived in Park City, where her film “The Words” premieres at the Sundance Film Festival. It's a neat little microcosm for her career, which has seen in seemingly constant employment in the last few years, varying from little indie pictures to, well, the most successful film of all time, "Avatar."

Sundance: Director Antonio Campos & Stars Of 'Simon Killer' Talk Sociopaths, Sex & Soundtrack To The Film

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 26, 2012 2:56 PM
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  • 3 Comments
This time last year, "Martha Marcy May Marlene" was the toast of Sundance, an impossibly tense drama that, even by the end of 2011, still stood tall as one of the year's best films. Last January, "Afterschool" helmer Antonio Campos was in Park City in his capacity as a producer (he's one third of Borderline Films along with 'Martha Marcy' director Sean Durkin and Josh Mond), but twelve months later, he's back as director, with another intense character study, "Simon Killer."

James Murphy & 'Shut Up And Play The Hits' Filmmakers Say Full 4 Hour Madison Square Concert Will See The Light Of Day

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 26, 2012 12:01 PM
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  • 1 Comment
We can't remember the last time a concert movie caused quite as much excitement as "Shut Up And Play The Hits." But given that the film is a document of the final gig of James Murphy's LCD Soundsystem, one of the most acclaimed bands of the last decade, it's easy to understand. Despite reaching a point where they were more successful than ever before, the dance-punk-glam-rock group, Murphy decided to call it a day while still on top, breaking up the band after two sold-out gigs at Madison Square Garden last April.

Sundance: Clarke Peters & Nate Parker And Writer James McBride, Talk Race & Religion In Spike Lee's 'Red Hook Summer'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 25, 2012 6:11 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Whatever you thought of his last film, " Miracle At St. Anna" (and we'd argue that it's better than its reputation suggests), most would agree that three-and-a-half years is too long between Spike Lee feature films (though his excellent documentaries have been a good placeholder). One of our most vital filmmakers, behind classics from "Do The Right Thing" to "25th Hour," he delivers work that is always thought-provoking and fiery. And he's not mellowed in his absence; when his latest film, the self-financed "Red Hook Summer," premiered on Sunday night at Sundance, it instantly became one of the controversial, divisive films of the festival, with some calling it a real return to form, and some calling it among his weakest, scrappiest efforts.

So Yong Kim Discusses Her Collaboration With Paul Dano & Battling The Freezing Winter In 'For Ellen'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 25, 2012 4:00 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Thanks to her previous films "In Between Days" and "Treeless Mountain," and a none-more-indie cast featuring Paul Dano and Jena Malone, So Yong Kim's latest "For Ellen" had to be one of the most anticipated films of Sundance, at least in certain circles.

Sundance: Mary Elizabeth Winstead On Playing An Alcoholic In 'Smashed' And Working With Roman Coppola & Charlie Sheen

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 25, 2012 1:04 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Every year, Sundance provides a massive career boost to a handful of people. Sometimes it's a total newcomer -- think of Carey Mulligan, or Elizabeth Olsen in recent years -- who suddenly find themselves on every casting wishlist around.

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