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AFI Fest Centerpieces: Company Men, Blue Valentine, Barney's Version, Tribute: King's Speech

AFI Fest Centerpieces: Company Men, Blue Valentine, Barney's Version, Tribute: King's Speech
The American Film Institute's AFI Fest 2010, which runs in Hollywood from November 4-11, has announced its Centerpiece Galas to accompany the previously announced opening and closing night selections (the world premiere of Edward Zwick's Love and Other Drugs and Darren Aronofsky's Venice stunner Black Swan). The Centerpiece Galas are Sundance holdovers The Company Men (John Wells), Abel (Diego Luna) and Blue Valentine (Derek Cianfrance) and Toronto entries Barney's Version (Richard J. Lewis) and Casino Jack (George Hickenlooper). AFI Fest will also mount a special tribute to fest circuit hit and Oscar front-runner The King's Speech with director Tom Hooper and stars Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 13, 2010 2:39 AM
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Oscar Watch: King's Speech Leads Gurus 'O Gold, Wins Hamptons Prize

Oscar Watch: King's Speech Leads Gurus 'O Gold, Wins Hamptons Prize
Tom Hooper’s The King’s Speech, starring Colin Firth as a stuttering King George VI, not only won the narrative audience prize at the Hamptons International Film Festival Sunday, but scored number one in the post-Toronto Film Festival Gurus 'o Gold poll (below). I also voted it number one (my current predictions are here and listed below), because the Tom Hooper movie is not only impeccably made and boasts the year's likely best actor winner (Firth), but is emotionally moving in a way that the brilliantly cold The Social Network is not.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 11, 2010 3:33 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Love & Other Drugs and Black Swan To Bookend AFI Fest

Love & Other Drugs and Black Swan To Bookend AFI Fest
The American Film Institute's 2010 Festival will open November 4 in Los Angeles with the world premiere of Edward Zwick's Love & Other Drugs starring Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal. Closing the fest on November 11 is Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan, starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel and Mila Kunis (which opened Venice earlier this month).
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • September 23, 2010 5:53 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Aronofsky Talks the "Nightmare" of Getting 'Black Swan' Made

Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan opened the Venice Film Festival and took the Lido by storm. I talked with the director about the long "nightmare" of getting the script right and financing the film, casting Natalie Portman and Vincent Cassel, shooting in a gritty up-close verite style, and how he set about "creeping out" the audience.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 15, 2010 1:19 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Venice Wrap: Best of Fest, Winners and Losers, Golden Lion Goes to Somewhere

Venice Wrap: Best of Fest, Winners and Losers, Golden Lion Goes to Somewhere
The Venice Film Festival, the oldest in the world, is winding up its 67th edition, my first. (UPDATE: The Golden Lion award went to Sofia Coppola's Somewhere on Saturday amid charges of favoritism on the part of jury president Quentin Tarantino; they once dated.) Venice is more intimate than Cannes, with less of a junket/market/party/circus feel, and very European. And yet for seven years fest director Marco Muller has lured more than a few star-studded Hollywood event films to the Lido (the small island is a vaporetto-ride from the most elegant tourist attraction in Europe). (Check out my flip cam interview with Muller below).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 11, 2010 12:09 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Telluride Wrap: Best of Fest

One great thing about The Telluride Film Festival: it's all over in four days. So as America gets back to work and school, Tim Appelo wraps up the best of the fest:
  • By Tim Appelo
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  • September 8, 2010 9:06 AM
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  • 2 Comments

London Film Festival Announces Lineup

From October 13 through 28 the 54th London Film Festival will screen 197 features and 112 shorts hailing from over 67 countries. Mark Romanek's Never Let Me Go will open the fest, and he will be the subject of one of the Screen Talks, along with Darren Aronofsky, whose Black Swan will also screen. Among the seventy American features playing are Derek Cianfrance's Sundance/Cannes holdover Blue Valentine [pictured], Tony Goldwyn's Conviction, Kelly Reichardt's Meek's Cutoff, Aaron Katz's Cold Weather and Danny Boyle's 127 Hours (which will close the festival). The festival is broken into several programs; Gala Screenings (The King's Speech), Film On The Square (Jean-Luc Godard's Film Socialisme and Chad's A Screaming Man), New British Cinema (Gilian Wearing's debut Self Made), French Revolutions (Guillaume Canet's Little White Lies with Marion Cotillard and Lola Doillon's In Your Hands with Kristin Scott Thomas), Cinema Europa (Eva Green in Womb), World Cinema (Michael Rowe's Cannes Camera d'Or winner Leap Year), Treasures From The Archive (Edward Yang's [Scorsese's World Cinema Foundation] A Brighter Summer Day), and Experimenta (Sharon Lockhart's feature Double Tide). On September 28, the fest will announce the award shortlist.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • September 8, 2010 5:51 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Oscar Watch: Gurus 'O Gold Top Contenders, Godard No-Show

Oscar Watch: Gurus 'O Gold Top Contenders, Godard No-Show
Movie City News webmaster David Poland has lined up the usual suspects for this year's round of Gurus 'O Gold of Oscar-watching. The top seven ranking is shared by most of this group of 11 voters: 1. Inception2. The Kids Are All Right3. The King's Speech4. Toy Story 35. The Social Network6. True Grit7. Black Swan
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 7, 2010 8:31 AM
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  • 9 Comments

Oscar Talk: Venice and Telluride Film Festival

Oscar Talk: Venice and Telluride Film Festival
Anne Thompson is in Venice and Kris Tapley is in Telluride, but that doesn't stop the two from getting into this year's award hopefuls. Topics discussed include Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan, Tyler Perry's prospects, and Venetian rainstorms. Stay tuned for next week's Oscar Talk.
  • By Cameron Carlson
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  • September 5, 2010 6:12 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Venice Opens with Aronofsky's Black Swan: Too Intense?

Venice Opens with Aronofsky's Black Swan: Too Intense?
The opening night selection of the sexy R-rated violent thriller Black Swan was something of a gamble for Fox Searchlight and the Venice Fest, which landed loyal fan Darren Aronofsky--after rousing Venice receptions for both The Fountain and The Wrestler, which won the Golden Lion. He talked Searchlight into accepting the opening night invite--and now has to work Telluride and Toronto as well.Why the risk? Well, Searchlight covered their bets by making sure some stateside critics timed their early reviews--which were largely positive--with Venice.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 2, 2010 9:18 AM
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  • 5 Comments

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