The Playlist

25 Movies That Defined The Sundance Film Festival

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • January 21, 2014 12:05 PM
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  • 14 Comments
25 Movies That Defined The Sundance Film Festival
As you might have noticed from the wall-to-wall level of coverage over the last week or so, the Sundance Film Festival has grown considerably from its humble beginnings back in 1978, when it was inaugurated as the Utah/US Film Festival and had a remit to showcase exclusively American-made independent films, and to promote filmmaking in the region. Robert Redford's involvement as a guiding patron led to its name change in 1981, from which point on it expanded gradually, until a kind of Cambrian explosion occurred with the arrival of "sex lies & videotape " 25 years ago this, a film that, with only a touch of hyperbole, could be said to have remade the festival into the modern titan it is today.

Kenneth Lonergan On The Inspirations, Performances, Resonances & Structure Of 'Margaret'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • July 11, 2012 11:56 AM
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  • 3 Comments
“There are some characters you think of and they’re really vivid to you and they’re easy to write and it doesn’t really matter who or what they are." replies Lonergan. "I don’t know why whatever this is fed itself into the life of a teenage girl. But I had been very interested in teenagers and that combination of sensitivity and dramatisation that they have. And very, very strong reactions to things that adults are more accustomed to, and not necessarily in a good way. They somewhat enjoy the drama which adults also don’t do because we understand it’s all very serious and nothing to enjoy.

'Margaret': Extended Cut Vs. Theatrical Cut - What's Different, New & Changed?

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • July 10, 2012 2:58 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Last night at the Sunshine Cinema in New York, Indiewire hosted a special event for the home video debut of Kenneth Lonergan's troubled epic "Margaret," which included the very first screening of the new "extended cut" (it's not exactly a director's cut of the film, read our interview with Lonergan here), along with an extensive post-screening Q&A hosted by Tony Kushner that featured Lonergan and several members of the movie's sprawling cast (among them: Mark Ruffalo, J. Smith-Cameron, Matthew Broderick, Jeannie Berlin, and John Gallagher Jr.). This new cut runs a whopping 3 hours and 8 minutes and features several radical additions/alterations, and with the Q&A running nearly an hour, well, it added up to a long night. Spoilers follow.

Kenneth Lonergan Discusses The Changes In The New Cut Of 'Margaret,' Digital Vs. Film, 3D & More

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • July 10, 2012 11:04 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Of the many interpretations of the story of its tortuous, years-long journey to the screen, for a time the favored narrative for "Margaret" ran something like this: overambitious director of indie-darling first feature, dashes sprawling, pretentious sophomore effort on rocks of own hubris -- chaos, bitterness, lawsuits ensue. It’s the kind of Hollywood story that writes itself, based around some putative generalised notion of The Director as a towering Wellesian figure of limitless ego and myopia-verging-on-madness where his creations are concerned.

How Personal Rivalries Shelved Martin Scorsese's Cut Of Kenneth Lonergan's 'Margaret' & More From NY Times Profile

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 19, 2012 1:36 PM
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  • 1 Comment
One of the stories of last year's award season was the small, but vocal campaign to give Kenneth Lonergan's "Margaret" more recognition that its studio Fox Searchlight was willing to give it. Already delayed thanks to a protracted and ugly legal and creative battle, that the movie hit theaters at all was something of a minor miracle. But as most who had followed tortured production knew, the cut released in theaters was a compromised version of what Lonergan set out to achieve. Nonetheless, whether you thought the film was a masterpiece or not, there was no doubt he had created something that was special: a post 9/11 drama that used one teenage girl's coming-of-age as a metaphor for a city dealing with the emotional fallout of a national tragedy.

3 Hour Director's Cut Of Kenneth Lonergan's 'Margaret' Hits DVD In July

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • May 15, 2012 3:18 PM
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  • 8 Comments
Well, this is finally happening: Kenneth Lonergan's "Margaret," the long-delayed, much discussed, often troubled drama about a young girl (Anna Paquin) who accidentally causes a horrific bus accident, is finally making its way onto DVD and Blu-ray in July. This is great news for anyone who missed the movie's brief theatrical release last fall, but even better news for fans of the film (we are a small group, but we're very vocal). As The New Yorker reports, the film will be available in both the original theatrical cut (which ran two-and-a-half-hours) alongside a new director's cut (with an additional 36 minutes of footage), presumably in a two-disc edition, on DVD at least. So all those dangling subplots and unresolved conflicts may not be dangling and unresolved for much longer .

Mark Ruffalo Says Scarlett Johansson Might Not Co-Star In 'Can A Song Save Your Life?'; Eyeing Country Singer Role In Kenneth Lonergan's Play ‘Hang On To Me, Darling’

  • By Jeff Otto
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  • April 17, 2012 12:01 PM
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  • 4 Comments
When Mark Ruffalo was announced as the successor to Ed Norton’s Hulk/Bruce Banner for “The Avengers,” many eyebrows were raised and, in the case of the fanboys, many wondered if the actor known for his acclaimed work in indie dramas could do the job. However, if there’s one thing Ruffalo has proven over the years, it’s his versatility as an actor. And at “The Avengers” World Premiere in Hollywood Wednesday, fans appeared largely pleased with Ruffalo’s turn as the big green lug.

Kenneth Lonergan Talks The Themes, Inspiration & Ideas Behind 'Margaret' At The Film Comment Selects Series At Lincoln Center

  • By John Lichman
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  • February 27, 2012 1:01 PM
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  • 0 Comments
To refer to the Film Comment Selects screening of Kenneth Longeran's "Margaret" as anything less than magical would be doing the film the same disservice that Fox Searchlight initially did when it failed to market the film nearly ten years in the making. From Gavin Smith's impassioned introduction to the guests hidden in the front rows of Lincoln Center (Michael Cera! Former Village Voice critic J. Hoberman! Alex Karpovsky quietly filming the Q&A on a DSLR!) the message was simple: cinephiles demanded a second chance at this quiet-yet-overwhelming missive on a post-9/11 New York.

Kenneth Lonergan Hopes The Longer Cut Of 'Margaret' Edited By Martin Scorsese Will Eventually Be Released

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 3, 2011 2:25 PM
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  • 4 Comments
The rallying cry for "Margaret" continues from certain quarters of the critical community, with a #teammargaret hashtag now tracking its way across the Twittersphere. And the push for the film has resulted in some movement. New York City and Los Angeles critics will apparently be getting additional screenings for awards season consideration (although, they had press screenings already prior to the film's theatrical release in both cities), with Boston and Chicago to follow, and there is word bubbling that DVD screeners are being prepared for those in cities who did not get the film (though with voting deadlines fast approaching, that remains to be seen).

Martin Scorsese's Cut Of 'Margaret' Longer Than Current Version; Producer Turned Down TIFF Premiere

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 3, 2011 1:44 AM
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  • 1 Comment
After six years of legal battles and editing bay drama, Fox Searchlight finally released Kenneth Lonergan's long awaited "Margaret" this weekend in a handful of theaters. Pushed by a marketing campaign that could generously be called "modest," the film opened to fairly dismal numbers and even though it will rollout to more cities next weekend, the extended imbroglio seems to earned the movie a quiet death. Except, in the court of law, the saga of "Margaret" is not over (more on that in a second) but moreover, for anyone who has seen the film, the news that a longer version of Lonergan's film never made it to screens will be an added frustration to a picture that flirts with greatness only to become unhinged in its wild second half (indeed, it split The Playlist team in half).

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