a.k.a. "The Oscar Messenger"

Posts tagged ‘NYU Film School’

Video

Melonie Diaz Sizzles in Super-Hot Oscar Contender “Fruitvale Station’

The lovely and charming Melonie Diaz of the much Oscar-buzzed “Fruitvale Station” a Sundance and Cannes sensation that couldn’t be more timely. Melonie reveals that she studied directing at NYU Film School! And discusses her relationship with Oscar Winner Octavia Spencer who plays her mother-in-law in the ripped-from-the-headlines movie.

“Gun Hill Road” terrific new transexual indie!

I predict that the critics will be throwing their collective hats into the collective air above them in hailing the arrival of “Gun Hill Road,” a terrific new Indie about of all things, a Bronx teenage transsexual! And that one of those hats may just land squarely on the very pretty Hispanic head of Harmony Santana, the Latino/Latina actor/actress who gives one of the greatest debut performances I’ve ever seen. Is Oscar listening?

Harmony reminds you a LOT of Jaye Davidson of “The Crying Game” who ended up with a Best Supporting Actor nomination in 1992 for playing a tranny who was passing who hooks up with the IRA. He lost to Gene Hackman in “The Unforgiven” but that startling nomination is there forever. I thought in one of the first years I was predicting the Oscars on my TV show that he would win. Scott Siegel(yes, he’s been on my show THAT long) said it was gonna be Hackman. I should’ve listened.

The New York Times is hailing Harmony, too, in a full-blown, star-is-born feature article pointing the way to a future career for Harmony and also to PERHAPS major awards kudos at the end of the year. If Jaye Davidson can pull of this Oscar hat trick, Harmony Santana can, too!

And yes, as the New York Times so delicately points out, she IS a transsexual playing a transsexual which is a rarity indeed in features.

Out of Sundance via NYU Film School, it is, believe it or not, the “Thesis Films” of its’ VERY talented young director/writer, Rashaad Ernesto Green, who I knew as a wonderful young African-American acting student at NYU’s famed Grad Acting Dept. He was a memorable, sexy, wounded Brick in a production there of Tennessee Williams’ classsic “Cat on a Hat Tin Roof.” And his classmate Corey Stall played Big Daddy. And Corey is lighting up the screen this year in Woody Allen’s “Midnight in Paris”  and he may be Oscar nomination bound, too! I’ve now seen “Midnight in Paris” SEVEN TIMES! An all time record for me!

But back to Rashaad Ernest Green and his wonderful new film “Gun Hill Road”!

Upon graduation, Rashaad had to face the “pounding the pavements” reality of an actors’ life in New York City and this drove him quick smart back to the haloed halls of NYU Film School, this time, to get yet ANOTHER Master’s Degree this time in film.

And boy has he struck pay dirt with “Gun Hill Road”! It’s gone from Sundance to major distribution where it is going to be opening at the Angelika as well as the AMC 42nd St.  this Friday!

If you can’t wait, you can see me interviewing him and Harmony and soon Esai Morales, too, as the jail-house dad, on my You Tube Channel here ~ at www.youtube.com/StephenHoltShow

They’re all going to be famous tomorrow. Or thereabouts.

When two SUPPORTING Actresses are Nominated for the same movie….

Following on yesterday’s thoughts, even though Yes, Shirley MacLaine DID trounce Debra Winger, both nominated for “Terms of Endearment” as BEST ACTRESS.

While this was an anomaly in the Best Actress category, this never to my knowledge, has NEVER happened in the Best Supporting Actress category.The two Supporting Actresses from “Babel” one in the Japanese sequence Rinko Kikuchi and one in the Mexican sequence both lost. And I was rooting and tooting heavily for La Senora, but no dice.

 So Melissa Leo and Amy Adams are now that they are so surely in play, each others worst Oscar enemies. So the title of their film “The Fighter” really applies.

And somebody else will win. Mila Kunis, no. That Haillee Blingatude creature. NO. And that leaves…Helena Bonham-Carter. For the regal royal, the beloved Queen Mother of the present Queen in “The King’s Speech.”

We shall see if these ladies all make it in to the final round, starting this weekend. OMG, the Broadcast Film Critics are two days away!

Update: I was corrected by Brian Scott Mednick on Facebook. Yes, an old friend who I had on my show back in the ’80s or early ’90s when he was an NYU Film Student and was the creater of the short film “Confessions of a Male Prostitute.”

Brian pointed out that as recently as “Chicago” TWO Supporting Actresses were nominated against each other. Queen Latifah and Catherine Zeta-Jones and of course Catherine Zeta won.

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: