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Thompson on Hollywood

Awards Season Update and Calendar: Critics and Guilds Pack in Movies in Order to Vote in Wide Open Race

Lots of news coming in today on the awards season front.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 19, 2013 3:50 PM
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Why Bruce Dern Will Land an Oscar Nomination for 'Nebraska': The Method Actor Tapped His Own History

Bruce MacLeish Dern, age 77, has been having a blast on the speaking circuit. He's eating up the attention like a thirsty plant. Finally, after all these years, he landed an Oscar-worthy leading role, in Alexander Payne's "Nebraska," which played well for the Academy last weekend. And Dern is loving it, even if he's losing his voice. He came to Sneak Previews and shared stories with us, including a heartbreaking explanation for the most emotionally moving scene in "Nebraska." Like the method actor that he is, Dern brought his own history to the performance.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 18, 2013 8:00 PM
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Bruce Dern Tells Hollywood Tales on the 'Nebraska' Promo Trail

With the release of Alexander Payne’s “Nebraska” imminent, along with what will undoubtedly be a full-frontal campaign to get Bruce Dern an Oscar nomination, Dern has been trudging – more gracefully than his character, Woody Grant, perhaps – down Memory Lane. The result has been gold for connoisseurs of film lore. Like his recollection that “The Wild Angels” – the original outlaw biker movie and ancestor of “Easy Rider” -- was created by the student body of the University of Corman.
  • By John Anderson
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  • November 4, 2013 2:37 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Why Does the World Need Another Film Festival?

With a prolonged global recession putting increasing pressure on the already fragile financial underpinnings of film festivals all over the world, what’s the argument for yet another curated offering -- and especially one taking place more than an hour from a major city, in rural Virginia? That skepticism greeted the announcement of this weekend’s first annual Middleburg Film Festival, which was spearheaded by Washington DC (and Middleburg) entrepreneur, filmanthropist and sports team owner Sheila Johnson -- one of the producers of "Lee Daniels’s The Butler."
  • By Rick Allen
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  • October 30, 2013 12:50 PM
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NYFF: Acting with Non-Actors is the Key to 'Nebraska,' Says Bruce Dern

It was the League of Extraordinarily Mature Gentlemen Day at the New York Film Festival, with two 77-year-old Oscar rivals holding forth in turn, first at the Tuesday morning press conference (Robert Redford for “All is Lost”) and later in the afternoon, with Bruce Dern –whose performance in Alexander Payne’s “Nebraska” already won him a best actor prize at Cannes – taking the stage, and immediately trying to divert attention away from himself and onto his director.
  • By John Anderson
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  • October 8, 2013 6:49 PM
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Oscar-Bound Bruce Dern Talks Career and Alexander Payne's 'Nebraska'

Let the Oscar drum-roll begin for 77-year-old actor Bruce Dern. He talks his career, and his wonderfully heartbreaking performance as Woody Grant, an aging man on a quest for a dubious sweepstakes reward of $1 million, in Alexander Payne's "Nebraska."
  • By Anne Thompson and Beth Hanna
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  • September 30, 2013 4:25 PM
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NYFF Live Talks Panelists Include Claire Denis, Bruce Dern, Isabelle Huppert, Andrea Arnold and More

The Film Society of Lincoln Center has announced their second annual free-to-the-public NYFF LIVE series of filmmaker conversations. Participants include Claire Denis, (“Bastards”), Bruce Dern, (“Nebraska”), Isabelle Huppert, (“Abuse of Weakness”), Hirokazu Kore-eda, (“Like Father, Like Son”), and a special conversation on story creation and the artistic process with 2013 Filmmaker in Residence Andrea Arnold (“Wuthering Heights,” “Fish Tank”).
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • September 27, 2013 11:44 AM
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WATCH: First Trailer for Alexander Payne's 'Nebraska,' Starring Bruce Dern

The first trailer has arrived for Alexander Payne's "Nebraska," starring Bruce Dern and Will Forte as a father and son who make a trek out to the eponymous state to claim a supposed sweepstakes prize of $1 million. The film, which debuted at Cannes (where Dern won the Best Actor award), generated good buzz at both Telluride and Toronto, with Oscar talk swirling for Dern's performance.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • September 17, 2013 1:02 PM
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Cannes Review Roundup: Alexander Payne's 'Nebraska' a Wistful but Slight Father-Son Road Trip Film

Alexander Payne's "Nebraska," starring Bruce Dern and Will Forte as a father and son embarking on a roadtrip, screened today at Cannes. The response is thus far mixed to positive, with praise for the film's wistful tone and a "career-crowning" performance from Dern. Those less impressed site the film's slightness, calling it "affably unexceptional" and that it provides "not much to talk about." Roundup below.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • May 23, 2013 12:33 PM
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