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Steven Soderbergh Blogs About The "Huge Inspiration" Of Martin Scorsese's 'After Hours'

While some filmmakers eschew any kind of online presence, thank God Steven Soderbergh is bringing his intelligence and wit online. Already active on Twitter, the filmmaker has found a new outlet via his online store and blog Extension 765, and he's taken a time out to sing the praises of an underrated Martin Scorsese gem, "After Hours." Read More »

'Blue Is The Warmest Color,' Wes Anderson's 'Fantastic Mr. Fox' & More Hit Criterion In February 2014

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • November 15, 2013 5:13 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Criterion: February, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Foreign Correspondent
If you are one of those people in a relationship where Valentine's Day means presents, you might want to start dropping some suggestions to your significant other as Criterion has a variety pack of cinematic chocolates that you'll want to savor in February.

Steven Soderbergh Did His Own Influential Edit Of Spike Jonze's 'Her'; Chris Cooper Got Cut From The Movie

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 7, 2013 10:03 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Sometimes in creative pursuits, it helps to have a friend who can be honest about the work you're putting out. And for Spike Jonze, he's got a circle of colleagues and pals in his mobile that alone would make for one helluva dinner party. Charlie Kaufman, David Fincher, Catherine Keener, Chris Cunningham, Nicole Holofcener, Miranda July and Bennett Miller are among the confederates Jonze is lucky enough to be able to bounce ideas off of, but it was another friend in particular who helped the director find the final shape of his upcoming film "Her."

10 Films To Watch Before & After 'Gravity'

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • October 3, 2013 3:05 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Films To See Before Gravity
Sitting in the dark, holding your breath throughout Alfonso Cuarón’s terrifying, beautiful “Gravity,” it can seem like the film simply spun up at you out of the void; it’s a work of such precision and simplicity that it almost feels like it came out of nowhere. But unlike, say, a sliver of space debris that glints in the distance a moment before hurtling in to wreak silent destruction on your space station, Cuarón’s hugely anticipated film (review here) not only had a gestation period of unforeseen length, but even back at concept stage it had its influences and its inspirations. So while it certainly feels unlike anything you’ve quite seen before, in realising his singular vision, Cuarón in fact refers to and borrows from several cinematic forebears, and, after the fact, we can see not only their imprint on the finished film, but also its kinship with several other titles.

Soderbergh Says Abandoned Leni Riefenstahl Biopic Would Focus On Director Battling The Studio System

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 23, 2013 1:20 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Perhaps only super attentive Steven Soderbergh fans are aware but at one time, the director was kicking around the idea of making a movie about controversial filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl. The German director is best known for making the Nazi propaganda piece "Triumph Of The Will" which actual content aside, is regarded by many as a pretty technically accomplished work. Soderbergh had worked with Scott Z. Burns on a script about Riefenstahl, cracked the story and then ultimately realized, perhaps correctly, that no studio would finance such a movie. So instead, he and Burns pitched "Contagion" which got them a thumbs up and off they went. But whatever happened with the Riefensthal movie?

'Breaking Bad,' 'House Of Cards' & 'Behind The Candelabra' Among Big Emmy Winners

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 23, 2013 8:56 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Last night TV's finest -- which these days tends to include some of movie's finest too -- gathered for the Emmy Awards, while the the rest of us stayed glued to "Breaking Bad" and to some extent, the series finale of "Dexter." Either way, both options were better than that dubstep dance routine to "Breaking Bad" on the awards show. And once the jokes were over, and tributes were finished, some statues were handed out honoring some fine folks.

8 Established Filmmakers Who Reinvented Themselves With Risky Low-Budget Efforts

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • August 1, 2013 3:57 PM
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  • 12 Comments
This Friday will see the VOD release of Paul Schrader's much talked about "The Canyons," a film both inspired by and conceived for the post-theatrical era (though it will receive a limited theatrical run starting out in NYC and Toronto). The film, which revolves around a toxic producer (adult star James Deen) and his girlfriend (Lindsay Lohan), is a collaboration between "American Psycho" author/enfant terrible Bret Easton Ellis and "Taxi Driver" scribe Schrader, whose directorial career includes "American Gigolo" and "Affliction." After the duo failed to get a studio-financed shark attack movie off the ground, they decided to pursue something on a smaller scale that would required fewer gatekeepers. Schrader's email to Ellis read, "Enough of this. Let's just do something ourselves. The economics are right. You write it, I'll direct it, we'll pay for it, and we'll make cinema for the post-theatrical era." And so "The Canyons" was born.

Steven Soderbergh Explains Why He Backed Spike Lee's Kickstarter; Raphael Saadiq Lined Up To Provide Music

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 28, 2013 9:58 AM
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  • 13 Comments
...and the great Kickstarter experiment continues with Spike Lee, who launched the campaign for his next untitled movie last week. As it gets to its seventh day, he has raised $310,000, which means he will need to keep the cash rolling it at the current rate just to get to the $1.25 million he's looking for by time the Kickstarter project ends in just over three weeks. But Spike hasn't been quiet. On Friday he drew more attention to his campaign by sharing his list of Essential Films for filmmakers he gives his students at NYU, and there's been even more from the filmmaker over the weekend.

TIFF Trailer: 'Koyaanisqatsi' Director Godfrey Reggio's 'Visitors,' Presented By Steven Soderbergh

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 24, 2013 11:23 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Yesterday, the first batch of 2013 TIFF titles dropped sending cinephiles into a frenzied excitement with a pretty killer lineup, with many now wondering how many extra days they can stay in Toronto this year. And the advance looks continue to roll out, as today a new trailer has arrived for one of the more intriguing question marks of the forthcoming fest.

10 Great Modern Day Actor/Director Collaborations

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • July 17, 2013 2:17 PM
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  • 41 Comments
10 Actor/Director Collaborations
The hallowed halls of cinema are littered with iconic and unforgettable director/actor collaborations. The muses that feed the filmmaker, the director that inspires the actor. Woody Allen and Diane Keaton, Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune, Ingmar Bergman and half his repertory including Bibi Anderson, Liv Ullmann and Max von Sydow, Werner Herzog and his toxic relationship with Klaus Kinski, Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro, James Cameron and Arnold Schwarzenegger, Monica Vitti and Michelangelo Antonioni, Spike Lee and Denzel Washington, Alfred Hitchcock and Jimmy Stewart—no matter what time period of movies you look at, no matter whether it be high or low art, the classic collaborations are countless.

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