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Posts tagged ‘Academy Awards’

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We LOVE Anne Hathaway! Congratulations, Annie!

I meet Anne Hathaway for the first time here in this TV interview promoting “Brokeback Mountain” in 2005. It was the same day I also met Michelle Williams and the late Heath Ledger. It was one of the great afternoons of my life. And Anne had it all going on, even then. So kind of her to help me back in to the light in that moment. She was looking at a monitor and I didn’t know I was leaning too much on the wrong side.

I can’t believe I’ve known her that long! And I was so thrilled that she won the Oscar on Sunday for Best Supporting Actress for “Les Miserables.”

I was hinting that there was an Oscar in her future, mentioning how Luise Rainer in “The Great Zeigfeld” for a performance as Zeigfeld’s discarded wife that was basically a one phone call scene.

And of course, there was! Congratulations, Annie! Everybody predicted you would win, and you did! Or as you said when you received it “The Dream Came True!” And it did! It did!

Oscar to go E-lectronic ONLINE Voting! Chaos? Progress? The End?

With the shocking announcement the very day AFTER the Academy’s Big Reveal of their 2011 Nominations, AMPAS has sent out a statement saying that is it going digital at last =  the last bastion of postal snail mail, Oscar voting, going the way of the Do-Do. Scary stuff. Some Academy Members are not even ONLINE. Some don’t even OWN a computer, nor want to. I’m not kiddin’. You can’t make this stuff up!

But you know what the Do-Do said to Alice, don’t you? “Everyone has won, and ALL shall have prizes!”

Guess so.

Which I, a victim of technology, as much as Jean Dujardin’s character in “The Artist”, see this as just an INVITATION to the hacker-sphere to “Come ‘n’ git it!”

What if the Oscar results got hacked? And you know THEY WILL…

I’m a Voting Member of the Drama Desk and yes, we all have to vote e-lectronically, but there’s still the OPTION to mail your ballot in. But it seems everybody does use the Internet. Does this mean Theater Critics are hipper than the Hollywood Academy? It would seem so.

You can read the actual press releases themselves at www.deadlinehollywood.com and Steve Pond’s great www.thewrap.com.

This will also herald an earlier Oscar night. Maybe as early as late January or early February. The E-balloting would be instated to MOVE THINGS up, and make things FASTER, voting and tallying-wise.

But it’s progress. They can’t avoid it. But it’s going to wreak havoc on an already crowded awards-season year-end calendar, which OF COURSE, will cause the BFCA, The Golden Globes, this Sunday night’s SAG awards and yes, even the BAFTAs to move THEIR Awards extravaganzas up, too. OF COURSE! D’oh!

Which means that films will have to move up their unseemly December glut to November? Well, that could easily be done. This year’s, 2012, I mean, films will all have to just get finished earlier. Heard THAT Mr. Spielberg?

He’s got Daniel Day Lewis’ BIG OSCAR contender of next year”Lincoln” on the boil…He’ll just have to finish it faster. And he COULD do that. For this announcement to come out THIS EARLY, it’s letting those who are preparing next years extravaganzas to SPEED IT UP! It’s doable.

For example, “War Horse” was more than ready and being screened all over the country, but god forbid not in L.A. and New York, where we, the huddled media masses could see it.

And he DID get nominated. But not THAT much. (He didn’t get nominated for Best Director. Though it did get Best Picture. But like “Hugo” none of his actors got nominated.) He went from being a front-runner, to being, well, just a runner. It’s being held back til Christmas Day did diminish its’ Oscar chances.

You could argue that holding “Dragon Tattoo” back til the last-minute on Xmas day, also, hurt its Best Picture chances. But you could also argue that it never had any chance at BP (Best Picture, not Brad Pitt) to begin with. It’s a genre film to quote Anne Thompson of www.indiewire.com

Oscar Goddess Sasha Stone of www.awardsdaily.com  called it “re-arranging deck chairs on the ‘Titanic!’ “

Being accused of looking backwards this year, these pronunciamentos from AMPAS feel like Papal Nuncios. “No! You see! We aren’t looking backwards. We’re looking FORwards!”

But really, is it going to mean anything, except that voters will have to watch more films SOONER? Which means that Voters will inevitably watch LESS films than they even do now.

You better believe it! And that hurts the smaller fringe films. I’m pretty sure they didn’t even WATCH “We’ve Got to Talk About Kevin,” “Shame” and also probably, “Drive.”

I swear that Albert Brooks in “Drive” and Vanessa Redgrave in “Coriolanus” both lost out on being nominated this year on BOTH sides of the Atlantic, because voters just didn’t watch EITHER of their films.

They got turned off in the first 30-40 minutes by the violence and didn’t stay to see Brooks’ and Redgrave’s great, villainous performances, which really kicked in LATER in both films.

AMPAS voters, and probably SAG voters, too, certainly are just OVERWHELMED by the amount of films they have to watch on their DVD players, and that is the way most of them do see these films. The super 3d of “Hugo” loses a lot in 2D on anything but the most sophisticated home players. for instance.

Whereas films with a smaller TV-friendly aspect ratio, like “The Artist” look even BETTER! “The Descendants” would gain on the small screen, too. AND “The Help” AND “Midnight in Paris.”

This will make late summer/early Fall Film Festivals Toronto,Montreal, Venice, New York, even MORE important than they’ve always been.

Because now people like Jason Reitman, who held his “Young Adult,” back from TIFF & NYFF, lived to see his film wither and die outside the Festival circuit.  And now he’ll have to go running back to Toronto, where OF COURSE, they’ll take him back. Like the prodigal son that he is, if only for a nano-seceond. In this scenario, his film of LAST year “Up In the Air” which was accused of “peaking too early” would never have had the chance for that to happen to it. There would’ve been NO TIME! Ditto “The Joy of Typing.”

It will mean that film critics like myself will have VERY busy Novembers instead of Decembers.

And what WILL Harvey Weinstein do?

Well, since he’s always busy ANYway, this new roundelay of “change” may make things even EASIER for him. Certainly more refreshing.

But come what may, this is what is on the way, dear readers, dear cineastes. Change! The Computers are taking over EVERYTHING!

“King’s Speech” Breaking Box-Office records!

I’m oh so happy to report that the brilliant, moving, unforgettable “King’s Speech” is breaking box-office records this holiday weekend in VERY limited release. Check out just how much, where et alia at www.indiewire.com The inimitable Scott Feinberg also talks about this and many other fabulous things at www.ScottFeinberg.com

He used to call it com.www.And the Winners Is…com

And he’s got an actual Academy member to write about everything Awardsworthy under the name of Deep Voice. It’s a member of the Writer’s Branch and is he cantakerous! But interesting. He thinks for example that “The Kids Are All Right” has got no nominations in its’ future, just Mark Ruffalo!(?!) And I agree that “The Social Network” doesn’t “make you care. It doesn’t move me.” But that nevertheless he’d nominate Justin Timberlake as Best Supporting Actor. That’s TWO nominations in that category, gone, from this guy, who can’t even vote for the Actors UNTIL they are nominated by the Actor’s Branch, come nomination announcing day. He can however nominate WRITERS in the two categories that the Academy has, Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay. EVERYone in all the Branches gets to nominate the Ten Best Pictures… but I digress…

Also this the coming Awards Avalanche week. Tomorrow night is the Gothams, where, probably “A Winter’s Bone” is going to clean up, and then later this week, on Thursday, the National Board of Review is set to announce its’ winners.

Update: It did. It got Best Feature and Best Ensemble, but no Jennifer Lawrence as Breakout Performer, which she was nominated for, but didn’t win. Does this help the film get into the Year’s Ten Best at the Oscars? Hmmm..(Sound of Oscar…thinking…) Hmmm….

The National Board of Review are a New York-based awards-giving group that has a LARGE portion of females in their membership, a rarity in this male-dominated business, believe it or not, and also many, many gay members. More so than most groups.

And judging by that, I’d say “The King’s Speech” is going to sweep. It’ll get Best Picture from them, and Colin Firth will win the first, but not the last of his many, many, much deserved awards that are going to be coming at him like, well, gangbusters. Mixed metaphor? But hey that’s what I do!

Helena Bonham-Carter should also score here where they consider a year’s work not just one performance like the Academy. So HBC should qualify for not just her shy, sly Queen Elizabeth in “The King’s Speech”, but also her mad Red Queen in “Alice in Wonderful” and her 15 min.(or less) turn as Bellatrix La Strange, the witchiest witch who witch there was more of in the latest “Harry Potter.” Now playing…

Best Supporting Actor…I think they are also going to go for Geoffrey Rush, here. And maybe also for Best Director, Tom Hooper. If they go for Hooper over David Fincher(who’s shooting the Milennium Trilogy in Sweden, and may not get back for the ceremonies in Jan. You wouldn’t think this would count against him, but the NBR wants all its’ winners present and accounted for. Yes, they do.)

Best Actress may very well be Natalie Portman, starting her awards march. She, along with Firth, well, the two of them are going to be seeing A LOT of each other as the awards season rolls out like a juggernaut over all our Oscar-filled lives…

Breakthrough Performance by an Actor could be the only award that “The Social Network” wins….Will they give it to New York native Jesse Irritatingberg? They like Native New Yorkers. So that’s what Natalie Portman, from Long Island, has going for her, too.

Or it could be someone else from “The Social Network” Even Justin Timberlake could score here.

I’d be very surprised if Jennifer Lawrence (who totally doesn’t deserve it) will find her week bracketed by awards. First from the Gothams on Monday as Best Breakthrough then by the NBR later this week. She’s got that blonde teenage mojo working…Whether I like it or not…And I don’t…

Update: She didn’t win the BreakOut/Breakthrough category tonight at the Gothams…and with all this hype, she certainly SHOULD have…but the NBR may fall for it…

Best Adapted Screenplay would be the first Aaron Sorkin win and start his line dance to the Podium at the Kodak.

And now they’ve just announced that Anne Hathaway and James Franco are gonna c0-host the Oscars!?!?! Sounds like a big mistake. Also this may eliminate BOTH of them from the race.

Personally, I LOVED “Love and Other Drugs” but it’s a zesty, sexy Rom Com, with a dash of Parksinson’s Disease thrown in…as an Oscar grabber… for Annie, which I don’t think it’s going to be. Rom Com’s almost NEVER rank with the Academy, especially in this crowded year for females!

And can Annie and Jimmy pull off hosting duties? I’m of the mind that yes, SHE can. Annie can do anything. Great inner resources as a performer. Comes from growing up with Mom as a actress and a gay brother. Talk about Drama!

But James is soooo laid back…I keep thinking of him in “Pineapple Express…

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