Friday, December 30, 2011

Poster for 84th Academy Awards Available for Download

This week, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences unveiled the 84th Academy Awards official poster. Nothing unusual about that, but what is unusual this year is the Academy is inviting the public to download the poster in multiple sizes, from a full-sized poster, to a size useful as a profile picture in social networking sites.

The art features the iconic Oscar statuette alongside memorable images of eight films spanning eight decades: Gone with the Wind (1939), Casablanca (1943), Giant (1956), The Sound of Music (1965), The Godfather (1972), Driving Miss Daisy (1989), Forrest Gump (1994) and Gladiator (2000). All the films featured on the poster won the Academy Award for Best Picture, except Giant, but George Stevens won the Oscar for Directing.

Actor James Dean was killed in an automobile accident in September 1955, but he was still nominated for best actor in Giant, along with his costar Rock Hudson. Yul Brynner in The King and I received the best actor Oscar that year.

The best picture was Around the World in Eighty Days, produced by Mike Todd, who was then husband of actress Elizabeth Taylor. Tragically, Todd was killed two years later in a plane crash. But, I digress. Back to the poster.

The Oscar poster's tagline "Celebrate the movies in all of us," and its over-all design, is meant to evoke the emotional connections we all have with the movies. The public is encouraged to download the poster image to use as wallpaper and profile icons, and to share with friends, available on the Academy's website,

The artwork was created by award-winning graphic designer Anthony Goldschmidt, and Mark and Karen Crawford of the design firm Blood and Chocolate. Posters will be available to theaters in the U.S., and internationally, on January 6th, along with a theatrical trailer.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PST in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater, and broadcast on ABC's Good Morning America.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood and Highland Center, and televised live at 7 p.m. EST/4 p.m. PST by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Oscar Nomination Ballots for 2012 in the Mail

 How many feature motion pictures will be nominated this year?

Nomination ballots for the 84th Academy Awards on February 26th of next year, were mailed yesterday to the 5,783 voting members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Completed ballots must be returned to PricewaterhouseCoopers (Pwc) by Friday, January 13, 2012, and by 5 p.m., PT, that day. Ballots received after the deadline will not be counted. I can personally attest to that.

Meanwhile, my readers are asking, "How many feature films will be nominated for best picture this year?" A very good question.

Last year, there were 10 feature motion pictures and many of my readers, as well as myself, feel that was too many. Because of the extra five movies, the Academy had to cut some of the more enjoyable features of previous broadcasts. In exchange we got, in essence, five more movie commercials, which we had already seen multiple times. The Academy did not see a spike in viewership because of the additional nominations, either.

So how many this year? It's up in the air. As I understand it,
PwC will tabulate the results as usuL, but they will have a bit more work to do this year.

Each Academy voter will number their preferences for the nominations for the best feature motion picture from one to five, and the PWC tabulation will determine the results by determining the movies that have the most votes. They will choose the top five, perhaps the top seven, ten? Who knows?

The rules state that no more than ten motion pictures, and no less than five, shall be nominated for the Best Picture of 2011. So, wait for the surprise Tuesday, January 24th, when the 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater at 5:30 a.m. PT. Check your local national network television stations for broadcast times in your area. ABC's "Good Morning America" on that date is the best bet.

Nominations and final-awards ballots are tabulated by PwC to ensure that all aspects of the balloting process are conducted with fairness and accuracy. Prior to mailing any ballots, the PwC staff administers a thorough verification process to ensure that there are no duplicate ballots and that none are missing. In addition to being counted and sorted, the ballots are numbered to guarantee that each one is addressed to the appropriate Academy voter.

The final Oscar ballots, by which the winners will be determined, will be mailed Wednesday, February 2nd. The best motion picture of 2011 winner will be determined by the nominated feature picture that has the most Academy members marking that motion picture as number one on their final ballot. There are no runner-ups in this contest.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Composer Thomas Newman Leads with Most Original Music Scores Eligible for Oscar Nomination

Ninety-seven scores from eligible feature-length motion pictures are in competition for nominations in the Original Score category for the 84th Academy Awards.
Composer Thomas Newman
Composer Thomas Newman has the most original scores eligible for nomination. He has four: The Adjustment Bureau, The Debt, The Help, and The Iron Lady starring Meryl Streep. One, or more of these feature motion pictures will get a best picture nod.

Thomas Newman, has exemplary musical pedigree, being the son of composer Alfred Newman; nephew of Lionel Newman and Emil Newman; and cousin of Randy Newman. An accomplished pianist, Newman almost always plays piano on his own scores, typically during slow, moody passages.

He has been nominated for nine best score Oscars, but has never won, not even for such motion pictures as Finding Nemo, Road to Perdition, Little Women, American Beauty, and The Shawshank Redemption. I think 2012 may be this Newman's year.

Composer Alexandre Desplat is not nominated for The Tree of Life. It could be because much of the music for that movie consists of vintage recordings, and that movie score was disqualified. Desplat is nominated for three other scores: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 and The Ides of March.

A possible cousin of mine, one of the James among many in the Horner family, this one known as James Roy and an Oscar-winning composer (Titanic, Avatar, Braveheart, etc.), is not nominated this year, either.

The venerable John Williams is nominated for The Adventures of Tintin and War Horse, both collaborations with Steven Spielberg. They have worked together going back to Jaws. Williams won Oscars for Jaws, ET, and Shindler's List. See his full music composition repertoire.

The eligible scores along with the composer(s) are listed below in alphabetical order by film title:
The Adventures of Tintin, John Williams
African Cats, Nicholas Hooper
Albert Nobbs, Brian Byrne
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, Mark Mothersbaugh
Anonymous, Thomas Wander and Harald Kloser
Another Earth, Phil Mossman and Will Bates
Answers to Nothing, Craig Richey
Arthur Christmas, Harry Gregson-Williams
The Artist, Ludovic Bource
@urFRENZ, Lisbeth Scott
Atlas Shrugged Part, Elia Cmiral
Battle: Los Angeles, Brian Tyler
Beastly, Marcelo Zarvos
The Big Year, Theodore Shapiro
Captain America: The First Avenger, Alan Silvestri
Cars 2, Michael Giacchino
Cedar Rapids, Christophe Beck
Conan the Barbarian, Tyler Bates
The Conspirator, Mark Isham
Contagion, Cliff Martinez
Coriolanus, Ilan Eshkeri, composer
DAM999, Ousepachan, composer
The Darkest Hour, Tyler Bates
The Debt, Thomas Newman
Dolphin Tale, Mark Isham
Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders
Dream House, John Debney
The Eagle, Atli Orvarsson
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Alexandre Desplat
Fast Five, Brian Tyler
The First Grader, Alex Heffes
The Flowers of War, Qigang Chen
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
The Greatest Miracle, Mark McKenzie
Green Lantern, James Newton Howard
Hanna, Tom Rowlands
Happy Feet Two, John Powell
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2," Alexandre Desplat
The Help, Thomas Newman
Hop, Christopher Lennertz
Hugo, Howard Shore
I Don’t Know How She Does It, Aaron Zigman
The Ides of March, Alexandre Desplat
Immortals, Trevor Morris
In Search of God, Rupam Sarmah
In the Land of Blood and Honey, Gabriel Yared
In Time, Craig Armstrong
Insidious, Joseph Bishara
The Iron Lady, Thomas Newman
J. Edgar, Clint Eastwood Jane Eyre, Dario Marianelli
The Lady, Eric Serra
Like Crazy, Dustin O’Halloran
Margaret, Nico Muhly
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, Michael Giacchino
Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Rolfe Kent
Moneyball, Mychael Danna
Monte Carlo, Michael Giacchino
New Year’s Eve, John Debney
Norman, Andrew Bird
One Day, Rachel Portman, composer
Puss in Boots, Henry Jackman
Rampart, Dickon Hinchliffe
Real Steel, Danny Elfman
Rebirth, Philip Glass
Red Riding Hood, Alex Heffes and Brian Reitzell
Restless, Danny Elfman
Rio, John Powell
Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Patrick Doyle
The Rite, Alex Heffes
The Rum Diary, Christopher Young
Sanctum, David Hirschfelder
Sarah’s Key, Max Richter
Senna, Antonio Pinto
Shame, Harry Escott
The Skin I Live In, Alberto Iglesias
The Smurfs, Heitor Pereira
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Rachel Portman
Super 8, Michael Giacchino
Take Shelter, David Wingo
The Thing, Marco Beltrami
Thor, Patrick Doyle
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Alberto Iglesias
Tower Heist, Christophe Beck
W.E., Abel Korzeniowski
War Horse, John Williams
Warrior, Mark Isham
Water for Elephants, James Newton Howard
The Way, Tyler Bates
We Bought a Zoo, Jon Thor Birgisson
We Need to Talk about Kevin, Jonny Greenwood
Win Win, Lyle Workman
Winnie the Pooh, Henry Jackman
X-Men: First Class, Henry Jackman
Young Adult, Rolfe Kent
Your Highness, Steve Jablonsky
A Reminder List of works submitted in the Original Score category will be sent with a nominations ballot to all members of the Music Branch who shall vote in the order of their preference for not more than five achievements. The five achievements receiving the highest number of votes will become the nominations for final voting for the award.

To be eligible, the original score must be a substantial body of music that serves as original dramatic underscoring, and must be written specifically for the motion picture by the submitting composer. Scores diluted by the use of tracked themes or other preexisting music, diminished in impact by the predominant use of songs, or assembled from the music of more than one composer will not be eligible.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at the Hollywood and Highland Center, and televised live by the ABC Television Network.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

265 Feature Motion Pictures Eligible for Best Picture Oscar

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that 265 feature motion pictures are eligible for the 2012 Academy Awards in the Best Feature Motion Picture of 2011 category. All winners will be announced in February at the 84th Academy Awards Gala.

To be eligible for 84th Academy Awards consideration, feature motion pictures must open in a commercial motion picture theater in Los Angeles County by midnight, December 31, and begin a minimum run of seven consecutive days.

Under Academy rules, a feature-length motion picture must have a running time of more than 40 minutes and must have been exhibited theatrically on 35mm or 70mm film, or in a qualifying digital format.

Feature motion pictures that receive their first public exhibition or distribution in any manner other than as a theatrical motion picture release are not eligible for Academy Awards in any category.

The link to the “Reminder List of Productions Eligible for the 84th Academy Awards” has been placed on the right sidebar and will remain there until the 2012 winners list is posted, and you may also click the title of this post to access it.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater. Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood and Highland Center, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Thirty-nine Original Songs Compete For Oscar Nominations

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced yesterday that 39 songs from eligible feature-length motion pictures will vie for nominations in the Original Song category for the 84th Academy Awards in February. The original songs, along with the motion picture in which each song is featured, the list below is in alphabetical order of film titles - on the right:
"Lay Your Head Down" from Albert Nobbs
"Star Spangled Man" from Captain America: The First Avenger
"Collision of Worlds" from Cars 2 
"Dakkanaga Dugu Dugu" from DAM999
"DAM999 Theme Song" from DAM999
"Mujhe Chod Ke" from DAM999
"Rainbird" from Dirty Girl
"Keep On Walking" from The First Grader
"Where the River Goes" from Footloose
"Hello Hello" from Gnomeo and Juliet
"Love Builds a Garden" from Gnomeo and Juliet
"Bridge of Light" from Happy Feet Two
"The Mighty Sven" from Happy Feet Two
"Never Be Daunted" from happythankyoumoreplease
"Hell and Back" from Hell and Back Again
"The Living Proof" from The Help
"Coeur Volant" from Hugo
"It's How We Play" from I Don't Know How She Does It
"When the Heart Dies" from In the Land of Blood and Honey
"Ja Nao Estar" from José and Pilar
"The Keeper" from Machine Gun Preacher
"Life's a Happy Song" from The Muppets
"Man or Muppet" from The Muppets
"Pictures in My Head" from The Muppets
"Summer Song" from The Music Never Stopped
"Imaginary Friends" from Olive
"Sparkling Day" from One Day
"Taking You with Me" from Our Idiot Brother
"The Greatest Song I Ever Heard" from POM Wonderful
            Presents The Greatest Movie Ever Sold
"Hot Wings" from Rio
"Let Me Take You to Rio" from Rio 
"Real in Rio" from Rio
"Shelter" from Take Shelter
"Gathering Stories" from We Bought a Zoo
"Pop" from White Irish Drinkers
"Think You Can Wait" from Win Win
"The Backson Song" from Winnie the Pooh
 "So Long" from Winnie the Pooh

On Thursday, January 5th, the Academy will screen clips featuring each song, in random order, for voting members of the Music Branch in Los Angeles. Following the screenings, members will determine the nominees by an averaged point system of voting.

If no song receives an average score of 8.25 or more, there will be no nominees in the category.  If only one song achieves that score, it and the song receiving the next highest score shall be the two nominees.  If two or more songs (up to five) achieve that score, they shall be the nominees.

A DVD copy of the song clips will be made available to those branch members who are unable to attend the screening and who request it for home viewing.  A mail-in ballot will be provided.

Under Academy rules, a maximum of two songs may be nominated from any one film.  If more than two songs from a film achieve a score of 8.25 or more, the two songs with the highest scores will be the nominees.

To be eligible, a song must consist of words and music, both of which are original and written specifically for the film.  A clearly audible, intelligible, substantive rendition of both lyric and melody must be used in the body of the film or as the first music cue in the end credits.>/div>

According to IndiWire, viewers may expect, depending upon songs ultimately nominated, to hear either Elton John or Lady Gaga or both (Gnomeo and Juliet), Luciano Pavarotti (In the Land of Blood and Honey), Pink (Happy Feet Two), Chris Cornell (Machine Gun Preacher), Brad Paisley (Cars 2), Sinead O'Connor (Albert Nobbs), or The Muppets. For more from IndiWire, click title of this post.

The 84th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live Tuesday, January 24, 2012, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood and Highland Center, and televised live by the ABC Television Network.  The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

Monday, December 19, 2011

‘The Artist’ tops 69th Golden Globe Nominations

The Golden Globe nominations were announced the middle of last week. In the race for best motion picture The Artist, a silent black-and-white movie about an actor at the time of the transition to talkies, led the pack with six Golden Globe nominations. It is nominated for best picture in the musical or comedy category.

George Clooney's two movies each received a nod for best picture, drama. The Descendants seems to be favored over The Ides of March. The former received five nominations, including best feature movie in the drama category, and a best actor nomination for Clooney.

But Ides of March was not slighted by the HFPA. Clooney, Heslov, and Beau Willimon are nominated for best screenplay and Clooney has a best director nomination.

Not nominated? The Tree of Life. Not enough "T and A" in the movie, perhaps, or was the Cannes winner's Transcendental premise over their heads? There is more about the actual nominations but, first, a digression.

I caution you, dear reader, to be aware where the Oscar race is concerned that the Golden Globe Awards are sponsored and the recipients chosen by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA). That is the association of credentialed reporters, etc., from outside the USA, who follow and report on the American entertainment industry. Some live here, some don't. The Globes give awards to both the movie and television industries.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is the sponsor of the Academy Awards (Oscars). The membership of the Academy (
AMPAS) consists of people who work in the movie industry, and who are card caring members of an industry guild. Every member must be invited to join. Only members of the Academy can nominate and vote, and awards are only given to the motion picture industry.

I know some people still call these awards, and festivals, "film," but it is a misnomer now because movies are not photographed on film and projectors don't project film, they are all digital in the USA. So, now we should call them the best picture, best motion picture, best movie, best feature, best short motion picture, etc. Technically there is no longer a best film in any category.

Besides, when I was in cinema school, I was taught that film is the medium whereby motion pictures, sometimes called by their shortened slang name, movies, are made. Motion Pictures are the products, one product medium that comprises The Media. Get the picture? If so, enjoy the motion picture festivals and watch lots of movies at your local picture show, as they were originall called. Of course today they are shown in a movie theater, or cinema!

But, quick, amend that. We don't even need to go out to see a movie anymore. We can get it on demand from a provider server There's TV, cable, satellite, or watch it on our computer. On demand, when we want it. Wow! The method of delivering  movies has come a long way, indeed.

Many critics and writers will indicate that the Globe winners predict the Oscars. They do not. What they do is bring the movies before the general public, and probably do cause some Academy members to consider, or reconsider, some movie they have either previously overlooked or dismissed.

For instance, The Hollywood Foreign Press Association and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences last chose the same best picture in 2009, when director Danny Boyle’s
Slumdog Millionaire won both.  I picked that movie for best picture in October when it won best picture at the Toronto Festival. After I saw it, I knew I had made the best choice.

Not only do the Globes honor television shows and actors, but they have two categories for best picture: musical or comedy, and drama, as well as the same two categories for best and supporting actors and actresses. The Academy makes the same distinction for actors and actresses, but there is only one best picture, and comedy usually gets the short piece of the wishbone when it comes to the Academy Awards.

The 69th annual Golden Globe Awards ceremony will be held Sunday, January 15th, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, Beverly Hills, and broadcast live on NBC. Ricky Gervaise will host them again this year.

The Oscar nominations will be announced January 24th at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,  Beverly Hills.The 84th Academy Awards gala will be broadcast by ABC February 26th, and Billy Crystal will host.


The Descendants, starring George Clooney.
The Ides of March - George Clooney wrote, directed and stars in the Ides of March. To me, it is basically Clooney's take on politics. Of course, it is a liberal-progressive one, so I like that. Tagline: An idealistic staffer for a newbie presidential candidate gets a crash course on dirty politics during his stint on the campaign trail.

 The Help, received nine nominations. Three actresses in the movie were nominated, but not Emma Stone who played Skeeter. These were: Viola Davis (Aibileen) for best actress, Jessica Chastain (Celia) and Octavia Spencer (Minny) for an actress in a supporting role. 

Hugo (Paramount), Martin Scorsese's animated movie is not nominated in the animation category, but for best motion picture. The other Paramount animated movie, Rango, is nominated in the animation category.
 Moneyball, an excellent baseball movie starring Brad Pitt, and costarring Jonah Hill, is for those who love the allure of baseball statistics, and a baseball movie that is all heart, at the same time. Pitt received a best actor nomination for his role as real-life manager Billy Beane, but Jonah Hill did not receive a best-supporting nod.

 War Horse, the latest horse opera. This one is set in World War One, and is directed by Steven Spielberg. Take Kleenex.

Click the title of this post to see the full list of nominations, and much more, on the HFPA's Official Site. Please come back here after the first of the year for some more unique takes on the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Screen Actors Guild's Surprise Best Actor SAG Nomination, and Mary Tyler Moore

Demián Bichir
18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards honoring the Years outstanding performances will be simulcast live on TNT and TBS,  Sunday, January 29, 2012, from the Los Angeles Shrine Exposition Center. Of all the industry guilds, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) has the most voting members of any guild in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Van Dyke and Moore
Actress Mary Tyler Moore will receive the SAG Life Achievement Award. Dick Van Dyke, Moore's former co-star on The Dick Van Dyke Show, will present her with the award next month.

Moore's breakout role was on The Dick Van Dyke Show in 1961. For that role, she won two Emmy Awards. Next, she played Mary as star of her own show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, co-starring the likes of Ed Asner and Betty White. The show won 29 Emmys during its seven-year run (1970 - 1977).

She was nominated for an Oscar in 1980 for her role as Beth Jarrett in Robert Redford's directorial debut
Ordinary People.

When the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) announces its annual nominations in movies and television, those in the industries, and fans take serious note. When it comes to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and (AMPAS), SAG members comprise the biggest voting block in AMPAS. Therefore, it natually follows that the SAG Awards are often predictors of Oscar winners.

There was one nomination for 2012 that took me most by surprise, and that was the best actor actor nomination of actor Demián Bichir (Che, part 2, 2008, and Weeds on TV), for his role in the independent movie, A Better Life,  directed by Chris Weitz, (Twilight: New Moon, 2009, and About a Boy, 2002).

Bichir plays Carlos Galindo, a hardworking undocumented worker in East Los Angles, who works as a gardener and landscaper for another undocumented immigrant. Carlos is raising his 15-year-old, American-born son Luis alone, because the mother left the family. Luis (Jose Julian) is wrestling with joining a gang to gain respect among his peers while showing little respect for his hard-working father, who comes home sweaty and exhausted every day of the week.

The movie is available for instant view now, or buy DVD, either for $3.99, from Amazon Instant Video. Support independent movies, click graphic:

The other actors nominated with Bichir for outstanding performance by a male actor in a leading role, are:

The Descendants
LEONARDO DiCAPRIO / J. Edgar Hoover -
J. Edgar
The Artist
BRAD PITT / Billy Beane -

The entire nomination list is long, so access it by clicking the title of this post. Remember, SAG does not nominate "Best Picture," or "Best TV Show," because for them it is all about the acting! I'll work in more about the SAG member's nomination choices in upcoming posts.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

'The Tree of Life' Wins San Francisco Critics Best Picture, and Sundance News

The San Francisco Critics Circle rallied around the Cannes' winner, The Tree of Life on Sunday, naming it the best picture of the year, and giving the best director award to Terrence Malick. The critics also singled out the movie's Emmanuel Lubezki for best cinematography.

Watch featurette of The Tree of Life star Jessica Chastain, also with Brad Pitt, and producers Dede Gardner and Grant Hill.

Comprised of 31 Bay Area film critics the organization, voted Gary Oldman best actor for his portrayal of a British intelligence officer in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

Tilda Swinton
They hailed Tilda Swinton as best actress for portraying the mother of a severely troubled boy in We Need to Talk About Kevin.
Supporting actor went to Albert Brooks for Drive,
Vanessa Redgrave
and supporting actress to Vanessa Redgrave for Coriolanus          
Fiennes and Chastain
Ralph Fiennes not only stars in the Coriolanus, he makes his directorial debut in this  lesser-known Shakespearean tragedy.
Also in Coriolanus, Chastain shows her best Shakespearean acting chops.

Bridget O'Connor and Peter Straughan took the best adapted screenplay prize for Tinker, while J.C. Chandor received the best original screenplay prize for Margin Call, which revolves around the key people at a investment bank over a 24-hour period during the early stages of the financial crisis, and stars Zachary Quinto, Stanley Tucci and Kevin Spacey.

Rango was named best animated feature, again beating out Scorsese's Hugo.

Certified Copy (France, starring Juliette Binoche, William Shimell and Jean-Claude Carrière) garnered best foreign language film.

Tabloid(UK)was named best documentary. For more on the awards, click title of this post.

~~~~~~ SUNDANCE ~~~~~~

The 2012 Sundance Film Festival online film guide is up and running, and it is in html. Search now to learn more about this year’s films, and the new ones for 2012, make a must-see list, and share on your social networks. The Festival opens January 19 and runs though the 29th in Park City, Utah.

Ticket registration closes at 5 p.m. MST on December 19. Register for tickets today! Get Park City’s best digs and deals when you book your accommodations online through the Sundance Institute.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

NY Film Critics Online Announce 12th Annual Awards, Plus AFI's Top 10

Melissa McCarthy
The New York Film Critics Online have followed in the footsteps of the New York Film Critics Circle and the Boston Film Critics Association by naming The Artist Best Picture of 20ll. Bridesmaids, however, was clearly a favorite, honoring the entire cast as best ensemble, plus Melissa McCarthy for best supporting actress.

Michael Shannon
McCarthy's win, along with  Michael Shannon's win for best actor in Take Shelter, were high moments in the evening. The date and place for presenting their 12th annual awards have not been announced.

Here are the major honorees:


Best Picture,
The Artist
Best Director Michel Hazanavicius,
The Artist
Best Actor Michael Shannon,
Take Shelter
Best Actress Meryl Streep,
The Iron Lady
Best Supporting Actor, Albert Brooks, Drive
Best Supporting Actress, Melissa McCarthy,
Best Screenplay Nat Faxon, Jim Rash, Alexander Payne,
The Descendants
Best Ensemble Cast,
Best Foreign Language Film,
A Separation
Best Documentary,
Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Best Animated Film,
The Adventures of Tintin
Breakthrough Performer, Jessica Chastain,
The Tree of Life, The Debt, The Help, Take Shelter, Texas Killing Fields, Coriolanus
Best Cinematography, Emmanuel Lubezski,
The Tree of Life
Best Use of Music, Ludovic Bource,
The Artist
Best Debut Director, Joe Cornish,
Attack the Block

For more, click the title of this post.

Meanwhile, The American Film Institute's top 10 included
The Descendants, starring George Clooney; Martin Scorsese’s Hugo; Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris; Steven Spielberg’s War Horse, opening Christmas Day - be sure to take plenty of Kleenex; J.Edger, starring Leonardo DiCaprio; The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, first English version of Swedish author Stieg Larsson's Millennium Series trilogy; The Help, life in a 1950's Mississippi small town; Moneyball, the baseball movie that may win Brad Pitt the Oscar, and The Tree of Life, Terrence Malick's poetic look at family life back when. The AFI awards pretty much cover most of the top Oscar contenders. AFI Official Site.

On the record, I have seen the Swedish movie version of The Girl With the Golden Tattoo. I am anxious to compare it with the English version. I will say, I found the Swedish version course, brutal and often viscous. The original Swedish title means, "Men who Hate Women." Definitely not for the faint of heart.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Boston Society of Film Critics Choose 'The Artist' as Best Film of 2011

This past weekend, the Boston Society of Film Critics chose to name the black and white movie The Artist recipient of their top prize for 2011. The actual awards will be presented February 4, 2012 at the Brattle Theater in Boston.


Best Picture -
The Artist
Best Actor - Brad Pitt,
Best Actress - Michelle Williams,
My Week with Marilyn
Best Supporting Actor - Albert Brooks,
Best Supporting Actress - Melissa McCarthy,
Best Director - Martin Scorsese,
Best Screenplay - Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin and Stan Chervin,
Best Cinematography - Emmanuel Lubezki,
The Tree of Life
Best Documentary -
Project Nim
Best Foreign-Language Film - -
Best Animated Film -
Best Film Editing - Christian Marclay,
The Clock
Best New Filmmaker - Sean Durkin,
Martha Marcy May Marlene
Best Ensemble Cast - Carnage
Best Use of Music in a Film - Tie:
Drive and The Artist

For more, click the title of this post.

Labels at the bottom of a post, if clicked, will bring up other posts that relate to the same subject. Try clicking one. To follow foreign language films, click the label that is the name of the country that interests you.