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The Playlist

Kirsten Dunst Joins Joel Edgerton & Michael Shannon In Jeff Nichols' 'Midnight Special'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 12, 2013 6:52 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Depending on your own age, you'll be horrified in varying degrees by the revelation that 2014 marks Kirsten Dunst's 25th year in showbusiness. The actress—still only 31—made her debut in Woody Allen's segment of "New York Stories," before going on to notable early roles in "The Bonfire Of The Vanities," "Little Women" and most famously, "Interview With The Vampire." Her career's had its ups and downs over time, but with a Cannes Best Actress trophy for "Melancholia" a couple of years back, she's never been more respected. And in her biggest subsequent gig, she's just signed up with another Croisette-approved auteur.

Stream This: 'Mud,' Hugh Jackman In 'The Fountain,' Woody Allen's 'The Purple Rose Of Cairo' & More on VOD This Week

  • By Emma Bernstein
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  • July 26, 2013 12:56 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Stream This
Hello streamers, and welcome back to our weekly search for the best of what's available to watch on the World Wide Web. The home entertainment system reigns supreme for another day, as two late summer flicks appear on VOD before their big screen release and a well-received picture, fresh off its theatrical run, hits the streaming services in advance of its DVD debut. Of course, there's plenty going on at the cinema too—this is blockbuster season, after all. Observing the premier of "The Wolverine," we have a much better alternative: an early-ish Hugh Jackman film, you know, before all the singing and all the muscles. And with the newest Woody Allen movie in theaters, starring the inimitable Cate Blanchett, we have celebrations of both artists. It could be that two-for-one which put us over, but with so many good VOD choices, we decided to forgo a Criterion selection for this week. Hulu Plus remains, however, and that section will be back next time, we promise. Now, let's get to the picks.

Exclusive: Jeff Nichols Talks John Carpenter-Esque 'Midnight Special,' Wants To Make 'Tremors'-Style Film & More

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • April 23, 2013 3:00 PM
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  • 8 Comments
Yesterday we sat down with Jeff Nichols, the talented indie filmmaker behind "Shotgun Stories," "Take Shelter," and this week's "Mud" which stars Matthew McConaughey in another great post-career resurgence performance (more from our interview later this week). While we had him, we couldn't help but ask about an upcoming project he's already teased – a John Carpenter-esque chase movie called "Midnight Special." Nichols talked at length about the movie, its tone and mood, and what is compelling him to make it as well. The director also discussed "Mud" and a laundry list of projects and genres he'd like to tackle. And given his output thus far, there's little reason to doubt he'll achieve them all.

Jeff Nichols Talks About His Trust In Sony Pictures Classics & 'Take Shelter''s Memorable Ending

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • September 29, 2011 5:04 AM
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  • 0 Comments
And More From The Cast & Filmmaker Of The Apocalyptic DramaLady luck is currently showing Arkansas filmmaker Jeff Nichols her pearly whites. Though his strong debut feature "Shotgun Stories" took years to complete and be unleashed into the world, his sophomore effort "Take Shelter" was picked up by Sony Pictures Classics before they even saw a cut. In addition to that, its two principal players, Michael Shannon and Jessica Chastain, are having a banner year and are quickly rising to household name-status. To top it all off, the filmmaker is already lensing his next feature, "Mud," in addition to writing yet another movie. Needless to say, Nichols is very busy and in demand.

'Take Shelter' Soundtrack Written By Ola Podrida's David Wingo Is Moody, Chilling & Unnerving

  • By Edward Davis
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  • September 26, 2011 8:22 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Just recently when discussing composer Mychael Danna's excellent score for the humanist sports drama, "Moneyball," we lamented the fact that writing about soundtracks isn't always easy, as often they're not the sexiest topic in the world. However, maybe we'll be putting that theory to the test in the fall of 2011.

Michael Shannon Talks Madness, Working On A Budget & 'Take Shelter' Director Jeff Nichols

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • September 15, 2011 5:46 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Michael Shannon may have missed out on an Emmy nomination for his role on HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire,” but his anguished turn as Curtis LaForche in Jeff Nichols’ stunning “Take Shelter” should put the star squarely in the midst of Best Actor Oscar talk. (It should do the same for co-star Jessica Chastain.)

'Take Shelter' Director Jeff Nichols Talks 'Mud,' Hopes To Have Michael Shannon In Supporting Role

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • September 13, 2011 7:55 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Shannon Studying Ulysses S. Grant And Other Generals For His Zod Role In 'Superman'Things are looking pretty good for Arkansas filmmaker Jeff Nichols. A quick summer shoot for his sophomore offering "Take Shelter" (starring Michael Shannon and Jessica Chastain) lead to it being sold to Sony Picture Classics before even playing the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. The quiet, occasionally startling meditation on marriage and fatherhood received rave reviews during its time at both the former festival and Cannes, picking up two prizes from the Croisette on its way out. But Nichols didn't bask in the glory for too long, as he was already busy setting up his third feature, the Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon-lead "Mud."

Matthew McConaughey & Reese Witherspoon Will Get Dirty In 'Mud' For Director Jeff Nichols

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 5, 2011 8:53 AM
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  • 5 Comments
Are we witnessing the renaissance of Matthew McConaughey? That would certainly appear to be the case. The actor seemed to be stuck in a rut of terrible rom-coms (see every movie he did with Kate Hudson) and failed tentpoles ("Sahara"), and we wondered what happened to the actor who charmed us in "Dazed & Confused" and impressed in "A Time To Kill." Well, the actor woke up one morning and decided to line up an array of solid film projects. This year has already seen "The Lincoln Lawyer" become a sleeper hit and favorite with critics and he's been busy lining up auteur-driven projects with Richard Linklater's "Bernie," William Friedkin's "Killer Joe" and Lee Daniels' "The Paperboy" all coming. And now he's throwing his weight behind one of the best young American directors working right now.

'Take Shelter' Takes Top Prize At Cannes' Critic's Week

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 20, 2011 1:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Australian Serial Killer Flick 'Snowtown' Gets Special MentionThe 2011 Cannes Film Festival is just stumbling on its last legs, with the final big film of the festival, Sean Penn starrer "This Must Be The Place," bowing this morning (watch for our review in a few hours). The festival's main awards won't be revealed until Sunday, but a select few awards have already been given out, focusing on films in the Critic's Week, the sidebar which highlights first and second films from directors, and celebrates its 50th year in 2011.

Chris Pine Could Star In 'Take Shelter' Director Jeff Nichols's Next Film, Coming-Of-Age Tale 'Mud'

  • By Catherine Scott
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  • May 16, 2011 3:15 AM
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  • 0 Comments
A film that made a splash at Sundance is now getting its due at Cannes, with "Take Shelter," the widely-praised sophomore feature from "Shotgun Stories" director Jeff Nichols, aired as part of the Critic's Week strand of the festival. And hot on its heels, the LA Times reports that the helmer is working on a new project, entitled "Mud." The paper's source indicates that Aaron Ryder, a producer of "Memento," will also be involved as the film moves forward. Sarah Green, a long-time producer of Terrence Malick's movies, including "The Tree of Life," will also produce.

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