The Playlist

Watch: Oscar Acceptance Speeches From Ben Affleck, Ang Lee, Daniel Day-Lewis, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Haneke & More

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 25, 2013 9:16 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Despite what whoever was pressing the "Jaws" theme button last night believes, the highlights of the annual Academy Awards tend not to be the montages and dance numbers, but the speeches. It's the moment where an actor or artist is rewarded by their peers, and thanks the Academy with wit, graciousness, charm, enormous egotism, or perhaps a bit of all the above.

2013 Oscars: 'Argo' Wins Best Picture & 3 Awards; 'Life Of Pi' Wins 4 Including Best Director For Ang Lee

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • February 24, 2013 8:17 PM
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  • 20 Comments
Well, that's a wrap. The two bigger winners of the night were "Argo," which one the coveted Best Picture award and three awards total, and "Life of Pi," which took home the most statuettes of the evening including Best Director for Ang Lee (which we called in our predictions). The one relative "surprise" of the night early on (though a late groundswell started in recent weeks) was Christoph Waltz for "Django Unchained," beating out Robert De Niro and Tommy Lee Jones. But the show was a brutally longwinded snore and the musical segments didn't help. Host Seth MacFarlane had mixed results, but fared better than we expected and had a few admittedly killer jokes. All and all though, pacing wise, it was a crushingly slow and laborious show. More analysis tomorrow, this thing tired us out.

The Early Gems: Notable Films From 2013's Best Director Nominees

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 15, 2013 1:08 PM
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  • 9 Comments
To send you into the long weekend, we're gonna take a break from the on-screen talent momentarily, and focus on the early work of the 2013 nominated directors. The five nominees (particularly controversial, thanks to the exclusion of Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow) are a mixed batch; from one of the most beloved (and most nominated) directors in history, to a 70-year-old European veteran with his first nod, to a debut filmmaker less than half their age. But all have something in common -- they showed promise at the beginning of their careers with films that we've highlighted below. Let us know your own thoughts, and who you think will win out in one of the toughest Oscar categories this year.

'Amour' & 'Rust And Bone' Top London Critics' Circle Awards

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 20, 2013 3:50 PM
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  • 1 Comment
With the focus this weekend on Park City with the Sundance Film Festival now in full swing, it might be easy to forget we're still in the midst of the awards season. And even though we're nearing the finishing line, with the Golden Globes already handed out, and a few more major guild awards and the Indie Spirits to come before the Oscars are awarded, critics circles are still getting their two cents in. And the latest to hand down their verdict on the year in film of 2012 are from the U.K., with the London Critics' Circle Awards honoring their winners today. And a big favorite of the season made a considerable impression.

Ang Lee Now Reading Script For 'Cleopatra' With Angelina Jolie, Says "It Just Feels Right To Me"

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 9, 2013 2:41 PM
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  • 11 Comments
One could make the case that Ang Lee is a somewhat underappreciated director, simply because his film choices make him a bit of a chameleon. Where other filmmakers tend to stake their claim to a particular milieu, and don't deviate from it too much, Lee has tried it all. From a gay romance, a Civil War-era western, a Woodstock-set comedy, a churning '70s-set domestic drama, an erotic espionage tale and more, to an epic open-sea adventure in this year's Oscar-contending "Life Of Pi," Lee's career has been marked by variety, and a willingness to challenge himself. And that's not about to change.

Directors Guild Award Nominations Include Kathryn Bigelow, Steven Spielberg & Tom Hooper But Not Quentin Tarantino

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 8, 2013 1:26 PM
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  • 11 Comments
Last year, Steven Spielberg may have missed out for "War Horse," but this year his colleagues are making sure he's honored for his much better-received "Lincoln." The Director's Guild Award nominations have arrived this afternoon, two days before the Academy unveils their Oscar nominations, and generally speaking, they tend to be a good indicator of who will be honored next month at the Dolby Theater.

Review: 'Life Of Pi' Is An Inspiring & Visually Stunning Tale Of Faith, Hope & Self-Discovery

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • November 20, 2012 4:37 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Taiwanese-born American film director Ang Lee’s career is difficult to pin down. He’s constructed nuanced and well-crafted dramas of various milieus and textures (from “The Ice Storm,” and “Sense and Sensibility” to the more erotic “Lust/Caution” and “Brokeback Mountain”) and orchestrated films of more action-oriented visual pizzazz and flair as well ("Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," "Hulk"). Perhaps bridging all of his eclectic interests, Lee configures a lovely and winning formula for the dazzling and emotionally rich “Life Of Pi.”

Retrospective: The Films Of Ang Lee

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • November 19, 2012 12:01 PM
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  • 15 Comments
For a filmmaker who’s tackled a wide range of genres, from minor-key Chinese-language comedies to epic kung-fu action, from nuanced literary Americana to iconic CGI-driven superheroics, it’s actually relatively easy to spot an Ang Lee film if you know what you're looking for. Superficially, the Taiwanese-born, American-trained filmmaker has an deeply eclectic and diverse taste in subject matter, setting and even style (one could never imagine that “Sense & Sensibility” and “Hulk” came from the same director from the shooting techniques used alone), but all kinds of thematic links recur across the director’s work -- family, repression, duty, thwarted love or desire. Whether it’s 1940s Shanghai or Civil War-era Missouri, you can find the same humanistic concerns, even as the filmmaker finds new things to say about them.

5 New 'Life Of Pi' Images Plus Ang Lee & James Cameron Talk 3D In New Featurette

  • By Edward Davis
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  • November 16, 2012 4:21 PM
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  • 0 Comments
James Cameron is to 3D what Lyle Lanley is to monorails (sort of). Okay, he's not a total huckster per se. But is it just me, or is it semi-amusing that Cameron always surfaces in support of his beloved 3D when there's a good movie in theaters that uses the technology well (i.e. the last time he did this was when Scorsese did "Hugo")? I'm being glib and facetious, but Cameron isn't just going to endorse any old mediocre cash-grab 3D conversion (he hasn't been around to advocate Marvel films for example), but he'll always stop what he's doing to help get the word out when a real artisan is using the sterescopic tool -- hence appearing in this new featurette for Ang Lee's dazzling "Life of Pi."

Watch: First Clip & Featurette For Ang Lee's 'Life Of Pi' Plus New UK Poster

  • By Cain Rodriguez
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  • October 19, 2012 10:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
With a stellar reaction at the New York Film Festival last month, Ang Lee’s 3D opus “Life Of Pi” is turning into a major awards contender and now the studio is amping up its marketing push, hoping to crossover from critical raves to actual box office success. 20th Century Fox has released both a behind-the-scenes featurette and a clip.

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