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Tag: Awards Season (51-60 of 339)

Oscar doc short-list: 'Stories We Tell' is in, 'One Direction: This Is Us' is out

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The Academy’s documentary branch has revealed its list of the 15 films eligible for the Oscar this year, reducing from a total of 147 movies.

Among the semi-finalists is Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell, about her quest to untangle her family history. The movie was a question mark for the short list since it includes some fictionalized elements and re-creations of events from the past. Ultimately, it made the cut, voted in by the 210 members of the doc branch.

Left off the list: One Direction: This Is Us, the documentary with the biggest box office tally of the year at $29 million. Teenagers were fanatical about it, but filmmaker Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) didn’t get much love from critics over his boy-band movie.  READ FULL STORY

'American Hustle' wins best picture from New York Film Critics Circle

The thing to remember about critics groups handing out movie awards this time of year is it’s all about advocacy.

The beneficiary today: American Hustle.

The grifter dramedy collected Best Picture from the New York Film Critics Circle today, and most people will be looking at the prizes as a gauge of what’s likely to end up in the Oscar race this year. Intended or not, that’s what the annual onslaught of awards have evolved into: Academy Award straw polls. READ FULL STORY

'Inside Llewyn Davis' upsets '12 Years a Slave' at Gotham Awards

Inside Llewyn Davis upset 12 Years a Slave and was named Best Feature at the Gotham Independent Film Awards on Monday night. The honor gives a boost to the Coen brothers’ folk-music movie, though the Gotham Awards aren’t typically an Oscar bellwether due to its specific focus on independent film. (Last year, Moonrise Kingdom won the top prize.)

In the acting categories, however, Matthew McConaughey won for his work in Dallas Buyers Club, edging out a field that included Oscar contenders Chiwetel Ejiofor and Robert Redford. Similarly, Short Term 12‘s Brie Larson was named Best Actress over Blue Jasmine‘s Cate Blanchett, who is considered at least a lock for an Oscar nomination.

The night’s biggest winner was Fruitvale Station, the Sundance darling about the last 24 hours in the life of Bay Area man Oscar Grant. Director Ryan Coogler was awarded the Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director Award and Michael B. Jordan was named Breakthrough Actor.

The Best Documentary prize was given to Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing, and the Audience Award went to Tadashi Nakamura’s Jake Shimabukuro: Life on Four Strings.

Forest Whitaker, star of Lee Daniels’ The Butler and a producer on Fruitvale Station, was given a lifetime achievement award, and Steve Buscemi presented a posthumous tribute to James Gandolfini.

Prize Fighter: Best Actor shapes up as the Oscars' toughest race

Daniel Day-Lewis spoiled us. Last year, the Best Actor race was an easy call, but this time around, it’s the hardest of the Oscar fields to predict. The race is jam-packed with worthy contenders, each with an equally strong chance of finding his name in that winning envelope on March 2.

With a month to go before voting opens we could still see some shifting. Who could still sneak in?  Forest Whitaker for The Butler or Joaquin Phoenix for Her have the potential to rise in the ranks. So does Oscar Isaac for his musical, downtrodden turn in Inside Llewyn Davis.

Most Academy members haven’t seen the ’70s grifter drama American Hustle yet, but since it began screening for the press earlier this week reactions have been ecstatic. Expect to see that film in as many as eight Oscar categories this year, including each of the acting fields.

Christian Bale’s comically seductive, balding, pot-bellied con artist from that film should soon be joining the list of Best Actor contenders. The question is: Who will he knock out?

Right now, if you ask voters to pick front-runners, they almost always name the five below. Each delivers an impressive performance, but also have a compelling backstory, which can help make the difference in a tough race.
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'12 Years a Slave': The emotional reactions that make director Steve McQueen thankful -- Q&A

Who’s afraid of 12 Years a Slave?

Not audiences — strong ticket sales at the box office have proven that. However, despite some passionate fans, many Academy voters have privately confessed to being intimidated by the drama, mostly because reviews have hyped the violence as extreme and relentless. Searing? Yes. Punishing for the audience? No more than, say, Saving Private Ryan or any other honest war picture.

In our latest issue, Entertainment Weekly named director Steve McQueen one of the Entertainers of the Year. That’s not a title one would obviously bestow on the soft-spoken British filmmaker, but “entertainment” means more than escapism. In his case, he’s one of the storytellers who simply moved people the most in 2013, bringing to the screen the true story of Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor) a free black man who found himself trapped in a place where there was no such thing.

We asked him what he would say to people who say they are intimidated by the movie, and why he thinks this has been such a strong year for films about the black experience. What McQueen wanted to talk about was how grateful he was to those who have opened themselves up the movie.

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Golden Globes refuse to consider Scarlett Johansson's 'Her' performance -- BREAKING

The Golden Globes will not be speaking up on behalf of Scarlett Johansson’s voice.

The vocal performance by the actress in Spike Jonze’s new romantic drama Her has been ruled ineligible by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for a supporting actress bid, according to sources close to the submission process. The final decision came today after an appeal from distributor Warner Bros.

Just last week, the Rome Film Festival gave Johansson its Best Actress award for the film.  READ FULL STORY

Independent Spirit Awards: '12 Years a Slave' and 'Nebraska' lead nominations

12 Years a Slave may have the most nominations, but Nebraska will probably benefit the most from its Independent Spirit Awards recognition — which give a much needed boost to low-budget movies competing for Oscar attention.

The epic slavery drama collected a leading seven nominations, while Nebraska was right behind it with six. Both films are in the running for Best  Feature, alongside All Is Lost, Frances Ha, and Inside Llewyn Davis. READ FULL STORY

Patton Oswalt to host 2014 Independent Spirit Awards

Actor/comedian/Twitter enthusiast Patton Oswalt will host the 2014 Independent Spirit Awards. According to a press release from Film Independent, the 29th annual awards ceremony will take place on the Santa Monica beach Saturday, March 1, to air later that night on IFC. The Spirit Awards honor the best in the year’s American independent cinema, bestowing traditional awards such as Best Feature Film and Best Screenplay, as well as special awards like the John Cassevetes Award for the best feature film made under $500,000.

Ever the consummate self-deprecating comedian, Oswalt confirmed his hosting duties, tweeting:
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Oscars announce Best Animated Short Film shortlist -- VIDEOS

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Thursday the 10 animated short films that will continue in the voting process for this year’s Oscars. The 10 films were picked from 56 qualified shorts. Here they are in alphabetical order:
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'Enough Said': Julia Louis-Dreyfus Q&A turns into adorable mini-'Seinfeld' reunion -- VIDEO

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If anyone can make you seek out the bittersweet romantic comedy Enough Said maybe George Costanza’s mother can pressure you into it.

Enough Said, which is in theaters now, stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus as a massage therapist who discovers that one of her clients (Catherine Keener) is the ex-wife of her new boyfriend (a lovable, lunkish James Gandolfini) and decides to use the relationship to secretly gather intel on her new man.

At a recent Q&A for the Nicole Holofcener film, Louis-Dreyfus talked a lot about her late co-star Gandolfini, whose final lead performance is also one of his most sweet and tender, and making the leap from cringe-comedy like her Emmy-winning role on Veep to a film with a more dramatic and romantic edge.

But then, at the very end, the entire show was stolen by one 85-year-old woman …

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