The Playlist

Mike Mills Says Winning Best Feature For 'Beginners' At Gotham Awards "Trippy, Weird Icing On The Cake"

  • By Jen Vineyard
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  • November 29, 2011 9:03 AM
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  • 0 Comments

'The Tree Of Life' & 'Beginners' Tie For Best Feature At The 2011 Gotham Awards

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • November 28, 2011 10:59 PM
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  • 4 Comments
With the New York Film Critics Circle set to announce their award winners tomorrow morning over Twitter (guys, way to make it less meaningless, how about an actual webpage?) and the Gotham Independent Film Awards just wrapped, the fall awards season has officially kicked off. And already, we've got some surprises.

The Amazing Race: Does A Packed Field Of Nostalgic Crowd-Pleasers Leave The Door Open For More Complex Fare?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 28, 2011 1:37 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Over the Thanksgiving weekend, certain things started to crystallize about this year's Best Picture Oscar race. Films like "Hugo," "My Week With Marilyn" and "The Artist" opened, joining the already-percolating "The Descendants" and earlier hopeful nominees like "Midnight in Paris," "Moneyball" and "The Help." Studios held sneak screenings of two more that aren't due in theaters for weeks yet, "War Horse" and "We Bought A Zoo," leaving Stephen Daldry's "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" the biggest contender yet to be revealed.

The Amazing Race: Which Composers & Songwriters Will Feel The Sound Of Music This Year?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 23, 2011 1:20 PM
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  • 5 Comments

The Amazing Race: Which Editors & Cinematographers Stand A Chance At Oscar This Year

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • November 18, 2011 3:19 PM
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  • 9 Comments
So far in this column, we've focused principally on the acting and writing categories, in part because they're the bigger tickets; when the mainstream press cover the Academy Awards, it's the actors, directors and (to a lesser extent), the writers who get the real coverage. However, what makes cinema well, cinema, and what makes it different from any other art form, are the cinematography and editing. The former is linked to photography, but goes so far beyond that to become an entirely different craft; when the layman says a film was "well-directed," he's normally talking about how well shot it is. Of course, that's partially the responsibility of the director, but it's the cinematographer who has to work out how to achieve the shots, and oftentimes is more responsible for the look of the film than his director.

The Amazing Race: 'Shame' & 'Tinker Tailor' Lead Noms At British Independent Film Awards

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 31, 2011 5:30 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Paddy Considine's 'Tyrannosaur' Also Wins Seven Nods, 'Kevin' & 'Kill List' Close BehindWhen "Chariots of Fire" writer Colin Weiland announced on stage at the 1982 Oscars that "The British are coming!," it went on to live in infamy; the British failed to come, and the U.K. film industry continued on much as it had before. But if David Seidler or Tom Hooper had exclaimed the same at the Academy Awards this February, there might have been less egg on their face -- the victory, and huge box office success of "The King's Speech" has been a precursor to the best year for British film that we can remember.

The Amazing Race: Which Original Thinkers Are In The Running For A Screenplay Nomination?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 28, 2011 8:52 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Writers. As Robert Downey Jr. memorably described them during a recent Academy Awards ceremony: the "sickly little mole people." With the bulk of big movies seemingly coming from board games, comic books and theme park rides, those who actually bother to come up with something off their own back get a little more credit, and it's always seemed as though the Best Original Screenplay Oscar has carried a little more prestige.

The Amazing Race: Which Writers Could Adapt & Survive Their Way To An Oscar Nod?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 21, 2011 7:04 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Considering they spend the rest of their time ignored, humiliated, rewritten and robbed of credit, it's only fair that screenwriters get two categories at the Academy Awards, effectively doubling their chances of being nominated. It's also their best chance of gaining real cachet; witness the careers of recent winners Diablo Cody and Aaron Sorkin, both celebrities in their own right now, and both planning directorial debuts.

The Amazing Race: Will Veterans Or Newcomers Win Out In The Supporting Categories?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 7, 2011 6:56 AM
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  • 11 Comments
In contrast to the Best Actor & Actress race, which we've examined in the last few weeks, the supporting categories are looking much more open. A-list movie stars like Christian Bale, Matt Damon, Penelope Cruz and Cate Blanchett, who've all figured in recent years, are mostly absent from contention, and only a few performances have really planted a flag in the category, with some initially strong contenders already starting to slip away.

The Amazing Race: Will The Best Actress Category Be A Battle Of The Biographies?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • September 30, 2011 4:59 AM
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  • 2 Comments
If the Best Actor category, which we examined last week, is competitive, Best Actress is even more so -- as has been the case in the last few years, in fact. While there are plenty of thankless girlfriend and love interest roles most of the year, people are writing good roles for women, thank god, and there's a plethora of great actors, both veterans and newcomers, capable of taking the role and knocking them out of the park.

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