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Tag: True Grit (1-5 of 5)

Oscars 2011: Director Troy Miller talks about making last night's opening spoof movie

hathaway-franco-oscar-spoofDirector Troy Miller has a long list of comedy credits, from Flight of the Conchords to Parks and Recreation to Mr Show. But there’s no doubt Miller’s most viewed work has been his Academy Awards opening montages spoofing the nominated films. Last night’s opening spoof, starring hosts James Franco and Anne Hathaway (along with Alec Baldwin and Morgan Freeman), was in fact his sixth for the awards. EW spoke to the director about getting Morgan Freeman to bring the funny and what it was like to do “covers” of Inception, True Grit, and The Social Network. READ FULL STORY

Oscars Luncheon: James Franco, Nicole Kidman and other nominees prep for the main event

jesse-eisenbergImage Credit: Steve Granitz/WireImage.comOnce a year for the last 30, the current crop of Academy Awards nominees come together to break grilled shrimp on focaccia bread at the Beverly Hilton, smile for the class photo, and turn a deaf ear to demands for 45-second acceptance speeches and promises of a three-hour running time. But before the 151 contenders  (out of 190, which is a nominees luncheon record) could eat, drink and be merry yesterday, the most recognizable of their ranks fielded questions in the interview room, which yielded the following pearls of Oscar race wisdom.

“When I was 13, I had to go to bar mitzvahs every weekend and this is the same feeling. I have to put a suit on every weekend to go meet with a lot of Jews. The alternative where no one likes your movie is worse. I’ve experienced both and this is better.” — Jesse Eisenberg, Best Actor nominee, The Social Network READ FULL STORY

'The King's Speech,' 'Black Swan,' rule BAFTA nominations

kings-speech-firthImage Credit: Laurie SparhamThe King’s Speech led all films with 14 BAFTA nominations, including nods for Best Film, Director, Original Screenplay, Actor, Supporting Actor, and Supporting Actress. True Grit, which had been ignored by the Golden Globes, garnered eight nominations, including recognition for Best Film, Adapted Screenplay, Actor, and Actress. Black Swan earned 12 nominations, while everyone’s pre-Oscar favorite, The Social Network, nabbed only six. The complete list is after the jump: READ FULL STORY

'True Grit': John Wayne vs. Jeff Bridges -- which one has more true grit?

wayne-bridgesImage Credit: Everett Collection; Lorey SebastianIt doesn’t take rocket science to see why True Grit enjoyed the biggest opening weekend of any Coen brothers movie to date. The film may not have won the Coens their most rapturous reviews (though the critics were largely enthusiastic), and it’s hardly their best or most defining work. Yet it’s a remake of a famous and, indeed, iconic Hollywood movie — one that, while not quite a “classic,” remains a robust and beloved end-of-the-studio-system-era Western. OMG, I used the R-word! — I called True Grit a “remake.” The vulgarity, the lowbrow cluelessness on my part! From the outset, you see, the directorial and studio spin on this movie has been to insist that it’s a completely different animal from the deeply sentimental 1969 when-fresh-faced-teenybopper-met-grizzled-old-marshal fable of popular vengeance. The Coens, making their publicity rounds, have talked and talked about how they went back to Charles Portis’ original novel, which was published in 1968. But if, like me, you’ve never read the novel (and I would guesstimate that 97 percent of the people who saw True Grit over the weekend have not), then after all the remake? what remake?! spin, you might be startled to see how close the movie really does come to the 1969 version. At times, it borders on being a scene-for-scene, line-for-line gloss on it.

There are differences, of course. The Coen brothers’ version is more tasteful and intimate and art-directed, a kind of color-coordinated curio. Hailee Steinfeld’s Mattie Ross is notably younger than Kim Darby’s (which, at times, makes the new Mattie seem even more of an old movie concoction), and major sections of the picture are set at night (a technique that worked a lot better in No Country for Old Men). That said, the essential hook of the new True Grit is, and always was, the sheer curiosity factor of wanting to see Jeff Bridges, in his born-again middle-aged movie-star prime, take on the role of Rooster Cogburn, the part that won John Wayne his only Academy Award.

There’s a reason that a great many people still don’t hold Wayne’s cornball-crusty performance in very high esteem. By the late ’60s, movies were in the middle of a revolution, and they had a new audience, known (it now sounds so quaint) as the Film Generation. At the time, a lot of folks under a certain age felt that it was almost their duty to hate John Wayne. READ FULL STORY

Why I wish we could go back to having only five Oscar nominees

10-oscar-nominationsImage Credit: How many nominees is too many? As every entertainment junkie knows, the most fun thing about the Academy Awards is talking about them. All the speculative chatter — Is it Natalie Portman’s year? Is The Social Network an Oscar movie or too much of a heady/critical darling/digital generation movie? — may be the height of trivia, but it gives us all a (tiny) stake in the outcome, and it’s also a way of trying to nail down, each year, that elusive yet revealing thing that is the Hollywood Value System. Besides, the Oscars are still the ultimate media-buzz-industrial-complex horse race. Can True Grit, after getting snubbed by the Golden Globes, snag a nomination for Best Picture? How about 127 Hours, with its rave response from reviewers, its grisly (if transcendent) final twist, and its just-okay performance at the box office? And what about The Fighter? I personally think it’s a terrific movie, but did the media oversell it as a contender?

In the past, those might have been tasty questions to chew over. This year, however, I find myself having the same Oscar conversation — or, more to the point, giving the same Oscar answer — over and over again. It goes something like this:

YOU: Do you think True Grit will get nominated for Best Picture?

ME: Yes, I do. I’m not sure it would, though, if there were only five nominees. But with ten, it probably can’t miss.

YOU: What about 127 Hours?

ME: Same situation. With only five nominees, I’m almost certain it wouldn’t be nominated. With ten, I bet it will be.

YOU: How about Toy Story 3?

ME: Definitely! And it’s great that they’re finally nominating animated films for Best Picture. Of course, if there were only five nominees, I’m not sure Toy Story 3 would make it…

Do you sense a pattern here? And, what’s more, a certain creeping rhythm of ho-hum tedium? READ FULL STORY

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