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Exclusive Featurette: A Look Inside the Cult of Martha Marcy May Marlene; Olsen and Durkin Vie for Oscar Slots

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood November 16, 2011 at 11:57AM

Fox Searchlight's mighty marketing machine is in full force right now as they seek to not only push "The Descendants" and "Shame" into movie theaters and the Oscar race, but a less obvious indie contender, "Martha Marcy May Marlene" ($1.6 million in limited release to date). Check out this exclusive featurette, complete with footage, commentary from breakout dramatic actress Elizabeth Olsen (younger sibling of the Olsen twins) and a psychologist who specializes in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. They address the nature of Martha's experience both within and outside a cult led by a charismatic, seductive Svengali leader ("Winter's Bone" Oscar nominee John Hawkes). More likely than Olsen landing a slot as best actress is "Martha" writer-director Sean Durkin's shot at scoring an original screenplay nomination--as usual that field is wide open.
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MMMM: Olsen, Hawkes

Fox Searchlight's mighty marketing machine is in full force right now as they seek to not only push "The Descendants" and "Shame" into movie theaters and the Oscar race, but a less obvious indie contender, "Martha Marcy May Marlene" ($1.6 million in limited release to date). Check out this exclusive featurette, complete with footage, commentary from breakout dramatic actress Elizabeth Olsen (younger sibling of the Olsen twins) and a psychologist who specializes in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. They address the nature of Martha's experience both within and outside a cult led by a charismatic, seductive Svengali leader ("Winter's Bone" Oscar nominee John Hawkes). More likely than Olsen landing a slot as best actress is "Martha" writer-director Sean Durkin's shot at scoring an original screenplay nomination--as usual that field is wide open.

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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.