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Thompson on Hollywood

Foreign Oscar Watch: Nicolaj Arcel Talks Denmark's 'A Royal Affair'

One of the front runners in the current foreign film Oscar race is Nicolaj Arcel's "A Royal Affair," starring Danish star Mads Mikkelsen and newcomer Alicia Vikander in a true romantic royal triangle. The film won screenwriting and actor prizes (for rookie Mikkel Boe Følsgaard as King Christian VII) at Berlin and is in current stateside release from Magnolia.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 26, 2012 6:47 AM
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Immersed in Movies: A CG Tiger to Die for in 'Life of Pi' (VIDEO)

Don't be surprised if Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" is right up there competing for the VFX Oscar with "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" and all the other prestigious front runners. It's that good. In fact, Richard Parker, the integral tiger, is arguably the best photorealistic CG animal ever created. What a performance: the way he interacts with Suraj Sharma's Pi in such close proximity on a lifeboat. The tiger exhibits such believable expression and nuance; he uses the space underneath the tarp first as shelter and then to observe and control his turf. It's truly an amazing character arc, bolstered by the most spiritual and dimensional use of 3-D yet, which only enhances its Oscar chances.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • November 23, 2012 1:58 PM
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Doc Feature Oscar Voters Face Rough Process This Year

Never have so many worthy docs been produced and released into the indie marketplace. There's a complex set of filtering systems that throw the docs at the Academy branch. Film festivals are one sort of gatekeeper for the plethora of terrific low-budget docs made these days, while awards groups are another, from the upcoming critics groups to DOC NYC, the International Documentary Association and the Cinema Eye Honors.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 21, 2012 4:18 PM
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Actresses Cotillard, Watts, Hathaway, Weisz, Field, Hunt & Adams Talk Fear, Fame, Nudity & Gender at THR Roundtable

This year's THR Actress Roundtable features a smattering of lead and supporting actress contenders: Marion Cotillard ("Rust and Bone"), Naomi Watts ("The Impossible"), Helen Hunt ("The Sessions"), Anne Hathaway ("Les Miserables"), Sally Field ("Lincoln"), Rachel Weisz ("The Deep Blue Sea") and Amy Adams ("The Master"). The women discussed career challenges, the roles they've had to turn down, fight for, and the ones they're hungry to play, and gender imbalance in the industry. Check out some highlights below as well as our interviews with Cotillard, Watts and Weisz.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 20, 2012 2:40 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Immersed in Movies: Talking 'Argo' with Cinematographer Prieto

Rodrigo Pietro calls "Argo" a "visual tapestry." That's because the bizarre fact-based espionage thriller and best picture Oscar front runner required the cinematographer to craftily piece together various looks to pull off the creative hodgepodge of styles, genres, and locales.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • November 19, 2012 2:38 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Oscar Dark Horse: Jake Gyllenhaal Talks Must-See 'End of Watch'

Of all the dark horse Oscar hopefuls this year, none deserves more consideration than Jake Gyllenhaal for his role as an LA cop in David Ayer's "End of Watch." It's such a competitive year for leading actors that I hope this performance in an admittedly small but well-reviewed indie film will be seen. Critics groups may give it some attention.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 19, 2012 12:21 PM
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Oscar Talk: 'Lincoln' Starts to Pull Ahead; But Can It Beat 'Argo'?

On this week's Oscar Talk, In Contention's Kris Tapley and I anxiously await the last round of movies. Already screening is Gus Van Sant's "Promised Land," while "Les Miserables" and "Zero Dark Thirty" come after Thanksgiving. In time for the next phase of the Oscar race, the critics groups.  The film we have not yet been invited to--because it is still in the editing room--is Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 16, 2012 12:16 PM
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Ben Stiller and His Penis Saluted By Friends and Colleagues at American Cinematheque Ball

Ben Stiller's friends and colleagues raucously celebrated the actor/comedian's career at the American Cinematheque's yearly benefit ball at the Beverly Hilton Thursday night. Pals who showed up to give sincere or more often, irreverent, in-person tributes were Jennifer Aniston, Will Ferrell, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Jack Black, Patton Oswalt, Laura Dern, Andy Dick, David Cross, Stiller's wife Christine Taylor and "Tropic Thunder" co-writer Justin Theroux (who was responsible for the tribute video that is captured in part below).
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 16, 2012 11:49 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Palm Springs Fest to Honor Helen Hunt with Spotlight Award

The Palm Springs International Film Festival, gearing up for its 24th edition, will honor Helen Hunt with their Spotlight Award at its awards gala on January 5. The festival runs January 3-14 and always puts the spotlight on awards contenders.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 15, 2012 6:35 PM
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THR Writers Roundtable: Apatow, Boal, Haneke, Krasinski, Magee & Terrio Tackle Politics, Death & Historical Accuracy

The Hollywood Reporter's Writers Roundtable -- full-length, uncensored video below -- includes writers and filmmakers Judd Apatow ("This Is 40"), Mark Boal ("Zero Dark Thirty"), David Magee ("Life of Pi"), Chris Terrio ("Argo"), Michael Haneke ("Amour") and John Krasinski ("Promised Land").
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 15, 2012 4:14 PM
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  • 1 Comment

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