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Thompson on Hollywood

Oscar Watch: Passion Votes Drive Exciting Race, Likely Eight Best Picture Nominees--Not 'Bridesmaids'

The change in Oscar voting rules, so that only films earning hundreds of number one votes will land a Best Picture slot-- leads to more speculation and excitement than ever this year. But it's already clear that there will be eight nominees.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2011 3:10 PM
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  • 5 Comments

'Tree of Life,' 'A Separation' Lead Village Voice Poll, 'Margaret' Lands Three Wins

"The Tree of Life" has won yet another victory, topping the annual Village Voice critics poll and winning best director for Terrence Malick. The film was followed by Iranian Oscar submission "A Separation"; Lars von Trier's "Melancholia" came in third.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2011 2:02 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Immersed in Movies: 'Avatar' VFX Wiz Letteri Compares 'Apes' and 'Tintin,' Caesar and Haddock

It's been a great year for Joe Letteri, Weta Digital's senior visual effects supervisor, with "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" as the front runner for the VFX Oscar and "The Adventures of Tintin" opening today and competing in the animation category.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • December 21, 2011 12:04 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Indie Spirit Nominee 'Without' Team Talk Micro-Budget Filmmaking, Distribution

Writer-director Mark Jackson is up for the “Someone to Watch” award at the Indie Spirits, to be held in Santa Monica on February 25, for his micro-budget "Without." The film is a quiet character study featuring a daring performance by the newcomer, Joslyn Jensen.
  • By Charles Lyons
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  • December 21, 2011 11:47 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Media Update: Streep vs. Davis Interviews, Fincher, Mara, Pitt and Hill Do Charlie Rose, Masters vs. Damon

Meryl Streep charmed Morley Safer and viewers on "60 Minutes" (video below) and appears on the cover of Newsweek as the race for Best Actress shifts into high gear. It's hers to lose after 16 nominations and two wins, for "Sophie's Choice" and "Kramer vs. Kramer" lo these many years ago. She tells Safer she gets tired of doing takes over and over, and annoyed when women like Thatcher are described as strong-minded. When are strong men described that way?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 20, 2011 4:18 PM
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  • 1 Comment

London Film Critics Bolster Tinker Tailor, Drive, A Separation, Redgrave, Chastain, Colman, Mulligan

As I keep saying, critics, especially those across the Pond, don't have that much impact on the Oscar race. But every time an Academy member has reason to add something to the must-watch pile, it helps. And the British block of voters in LA, NY and the UK --and the BAFTA nominations still to come--do have some influence on the Oscars.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 20, 2011 1:12 PM
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Oscar Eligible Song List Includes Performers Brad Paisley, Sinead O'Connor, Elton John, Lady Gaga, Pink and Muppets

The Oscar song category loves popular music stars, animated films and musicals. So of the 39 songs from eligible feature-length motion pictures in contention for Oscar nominations in the Original Song category, expect the five likely to be announced on nominations morning (it could be fewer) to include either Elton John or Lady Gaga or both...
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 7:39 PM
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  • 2 Comments

DGA Awards Name Grammer as Host, Film Nominees Announced January 9; Who Will Make the Cut?

For the first time, actor-director Kelsey Grammer will host the 64th Annual DGA Awards on Saturday, January 28, 2012 at Hollywood & Highland in Los Angeles. While the DGA and Oscar nominees do not always match up exactly, the DGA film winner is almost always the Oscar winner. The two have not synced up only six times since 1948.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 3:00 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Critics Keep Voting for Tree of Life, from Chicago to Indiewire Poll

Critics are lining up behind Terrence Malick's "The Tree of Life." While critics groups don't have as much predictive impact as Guild awards like the Screen Actors Guild, they do add to to winners' patina, build credibility and consensus, and keep attention on some must-see titles.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 1:44 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Early Reviews on Late-Breaking War Horse, Extremely Loud, Land of Blood and Honey

Early reviews are in on Steven Spielberg's "War Horse," Stephen Daldry's "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close," and Anjelina Jolie's "In the Land of Blood and Honey," three of the latest-breaking movies hitting theaters this Christmas. A sampling of reviews of all three movies are below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 19, 2011 7:30 AM
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  • 2 Comments

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