The Playlist

12 Indie Directors Who Jumped To Blockbuster Budgets

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 26, 2014 2:24 PM
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  • 8 Comments
Noah, Russell Crowe, Aronofsky
This week sees the release of “Noah,” and it’s notable for a number of reasons. For one, it’s that it’s a relatively rare Biblical movie not aimed principally at religious audiences (which may or may not pay off). For another, it’s the latest film from “Requiem For A Dream” and “Black Swan” director Darren Aronofsky. But perhaps more than anything else, it’s a movie that costs $125 million, almost four times as much as the director’s most expensive previous film, “The Fountain,” the helmer having been given the keys to Paramount’s war chest after the surprise smash success of “Black Swan,” which made nearly $300 million worldwide.

Listen: Paul Greengrass Talks His Career, State Of The Industry & More In 1-Hour BAFTA Lecture

  • By Ken Guidry
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  • March 20, 2014 10:17 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Paul Greengrass
Last Monday, “Captain Phillips” director Paul Greengrass gave an hour-long speech as part of the David Lean Lecture, an annual event held by BAFTA where they bring in some of the world’s greatest filmmakers. Greengrass talked about his early years and how he went from making documentaries in the UK to commercial films in Hollywood. And, on a serious note, he talked about the struggles that British directors have to face on a regular basis, as they constantly fight for control over their work. Greengrass’s passionate speech displayed a great concern for the future of UK cinema. He spent much time extolling the greatness of David Lean, but worried about “the David Leans of tomorrow.”

Watch: The Final Scene in ‘Captain Phillips’ That Should’ve Earned Tom Hanks An Oscar Nomination

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • February 28, 2014 9:22 AM
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  • 13 Comments
Captain Phillips, Tom Hanks
A great deal in a film can be forgiven if it entirely sticks the ending, and this past year has had no better example of this than “Captain Philips." Though a capably tense and well-rendered experience for two-thirds of the narrative, Paul Greengrass’ drama still hits another level as it sends its sea-bound hostage tale toward its conclusion — and now we’ve got a spoilery reminder of why Tom Hanks deserved an Oscar nomination in a packed Best Actor lineup.

Watch: 140-Minute Talk With Martin Scorsese, Steve McQueen, Paul Greengrass & David O. Russell

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • February 5, 2014 3:03 PM
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  • 6 Comments
David O. Russell Martin Scorsese Steve McQueen
One of the best things about this year's brace of awards season contending directors, is that they're all great raconteurs. Whether it's the freewheeling David O. Russell, film knowledge encyclopedia Martin Scorsese or the deeply thoughtful Steve McQueen (check out a two hour talk with him here), the constant train of interviews are made more bearable because they guys are just interesting all their own. Now put 'em on stage together, and watch what happens.

2014 Oscar Nominations: The Biggest Shocks, Snubs & Surprises

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • January 16, 2014 11:07 AM
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  • 37 Comments
Oscar Snubs, Surprises: 2014
Well, the Oscar nominations are in and Twitter has exploded with the usual flurry of WTF?s, OMG!s and TOLDJA!s (perhaps we follow the wrong people). And while in general it seems like a lot of the last-minute trend predictions went in the right direction (Redford went very cool for “All is Lost,” “Inside Llewyn Davis” too, though perhaps not quite icy enough to predict a near-total shut-out), in amongst the various entirely expected nominations, there were a fair number of films and performances we didn’t expect to see, and a few we had to double check we didn’t (you can read our full predictions here to see how right and wrong we were).

Paul Greengrass To Helm Cyber-Espionage Thriller 'The Director'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 15, 2014 9:50 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The Director Paul Greengrass
Tomorrow morning we'll see if Paul Greengrass will earn his second Oscar nomination for "Captain Phillips," but even if he somehow misses out, the filmmaker is keeping an eye toward his next gig. He doesn't have anything lined up as his next go project — he dropped out of "The Trial Of The Chicago 7" last fall while "Memphis" is still on the backburner — but it looks like he got on with his "Captain Phillips" producer Scott Rudin just fine.

Interview: Tom Hanks & Paul Greengrass Talk ‘Captain Phillips’ & The Raw Acting Ability of Barkhad Abdi

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • January 9, 2014 3:18 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Captain Phillips
In the fury of awards season, great films that arrived with strong buzz and critical plaudits can get lost if they arrived earlier in the year. One film that was released in October, but still holds on with strong sea legs is “Captain Phillips” (it’s scored recent DGA, PGA and Golden Globe nominations). Directed by Paul Greengrass and starring Tom Hanks, this in-the-moment thriller is a harrowing drama based on the true story of Captain Richard Phillips and the 2009 hijacking by Somali pirates of the US-flagged Maersk Alabama.

Directors Guild Award Nominations Include Alfonso Cuaron, David O. Russell & Martin Scorsese But No Coens

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 7, 2014 1:16 PM
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  • 3 Comments
American Hustle
The Coens might want to hold on putting down that deposit for a tuxedo, as it seems their wonderful "Inside Llewyn Davis" is not registering with voters. After being shut out of the Producers Guild and Writers Guild awards nominations, the directorial duo have once again been left in the cold, this time by the DGA.

Watch: 1-Hour Roundtable With Spike Jonze, Steve McQueen, Paul Greengrass, Nicole Holofcener & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 3, 2014 1:02 PM
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  • 5 Comments
LA Times Director's Roundtable
With the awards season now in the final stretch before the nominees turn into winners, there's still some campaigning to do and talks to be had and the latest comes from the LA Times as part of their Envelope Screening Series.

Paul Greengrass Explains Why He'll Never Make Another 'Bourne' Film (For The Umpteenth Time)

  • By Edward Davis
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  • December 13, 2013 3:31 PM
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  • 2 Comments
paul greengrass, bourne
You hold out hope because, well, that’s what you do (and maybe because you weren’t so down with chems). Maybe, maybe maybe, Paul Greengrass will make another Jason ‘Bourne’ movie and then Matt Damon—who has repeatedly said he will not make one without Greengrass—will be back on board, right? ‘Bourne’ producer Frank Marshall has even said his "dream" would be to have a ‘Bourne’ film that stars both Jeremy Renner and Damon.

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