a.k.a. "The Oscar Messenger"

Posts tagged ‘Oscar Messenger’

TIFF ’11 Begins! And the Oscar Race is ON!

Just a quick HALLO from Toronto! Yes! I’m at TIFF 11 my 13th consecutive year here and I always have the time of my life at the Toronto International Film Festival.  You just NEVER know what magic can happen here! And it always does in one way or the other.

VERY hard to top getting Colin Firth and Tom Hooper BANG right out of the box for “The King’s Speech” ON THE VERY FIRST DAY last year! And then having Tom Hooper naming me “The Oscar Messenger!” Hard to surpass that…but there’s lots of buzz on the ground level, particularly surrounding the great Glenn Close for her performances AS A MAN in “Albert Nobbs”! Yes! And as improbable as that sounds, people who have already seen it have responded very enthusiastically. And don’t forget that Hilary Swank WON the first of her two Oscars for playing a cross-dressing man in “Boys Don’t Cry.” Which also started its’ Oscar career here in Toronto, and THAT was deemed REALLY improbable. I’m seeing it “Albert Nobbs” shortly.

I interviewed Glenn, and I’m not making this up, about her WIGS when she was on Broadway a while back(Seems like a lifetime  ago) for the New York Times’ Arts and Leisure section. Yes, I did! I was in Beauty School at the time. YES! I was! And I liked her tremendously. So here we are once again on a collision course. With me do to interview her in New York closer to the opening of the film around Thanksgiving. Just so it’s FRESH in Oscar voters movie-filled mine.

“Albert Nobbs” is set in Ireland, so here, in English Canada, which is Ontario, which is where Toronto is, it’s BOUND to have a good, strong reaction.

Check out Oscar Goddess’ Sasha Stones great posts from Telluride’s Film Festival! She saw it there and loved it. And BOY did she love Telluride and wrote very strongly and movingly about it. http://www.awardsdaily.com  She went there with Jeff Well’s who blogs his brains out on a daily basis at http://www.hollywood-elsewhere.com

So that’s TWO views on Telluride that actually differ wildly on the films they both saw.

Another film that was there, and also in Montreal, and is now here, too is the fantabulous French film “The Artist” which I wrote about at awards daily . It’s the B&W silent movie that I think the Academy is going to fall madly in love with.

It’s ABOUT them. Hollywood in  ’20s.

And I’m looking forward to talking about a things Oscar with Anthony Del Col of http://www.killshakespeare.com

Yes, he’s going to be on my show and on my You Tube Channel, too. And of course, you can see MUCH MORE of the Montreal Film Festival at http://www.youtube.com/StephenHoltShow

Skies are gray today in TO. But nothing like the wild rain predicted. Not even drizzling. Ooops! Just looked out the window! Yes, it IS raining! Torrential downpour in NYC as I flew out of Newark. THAT was scary! BUT I’M HERE! And TIFF ’11 begins! I always feel like it’s a miracle!

Yes, I do. But it’s real!

Day Three – Eaten. Day Four-Riot at the Scotia Bank!

Oh no! My third day at TIFF has disappeared completely! And I was so happy — yesterday…

Saw the Best Film Of the Year “The King’s Speech” and interviewed both Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush! As well as their British/Australian director Tom Hooper. Who nicknamed me their “Oscar Messenger”! I think I’ll add it as a subtitle! A.K.A THE OSCAR MESSENGER!

And — all of it has disappeared!

And now I’m feeling absolutely sick, because I was caught in a near mob scene, yes, TIFF does it again! It this was Day Four RUINED! Because like an idiot I was made to stand for over an hour waiting to get into see Danny Boyle’s new movie “127 Hours” which is how long it felt standing in that line! With  over 1000 people and the airconditioning not really working. And Cameron Bailey, TIFF’s CEO, rising to his full height, which must be over six feet and operating in crowd control mode, if not riot…People were sooo weakened by this….

I’m just a shadow of my former self. My knees are KILLING me. And I’m afraid to go back into that building, the Scotia Bank, again….Makes the case for going to Telluride, doesn’t it?

But I did see two movies this morning. Marion Cotillard’s “Little White Lies” and also Fridrik Thor Fridriksson’s best film in AGES “Mama Gogo” Icelandic, of course. And I just loved it. About a filmmaker(obviously him) played by  my old friend Hylmer Snaer Gudnudsson, trying to get a film made while his senior citizen mother, Mama Gogo, is losing it to Alzheimer’s. I loved it.

Tomorrow is going to be a killer day. What with the Bell Lightbox opening, then the Woody Allen press conference which is now an AUDIO press conference. No video allowed. And then Marion herself and my big reunion with her both of these in the Four Seasons, then I’m supposedly back at the Scene-Of-the-Riot the Scotia Bank…to interview Fridrik…something tells me, we won’t be getting back downtown for that one…

I am so upset that the Blog about “The King’s Speech” disappeared! I was so excited, and it truly was a wonderful, wonderful film experience! One of the best I’ll ever have! IN MY LIFE! A high so high that it justifies all you have to go through for TIFF’s sake. It was magnificent. The audience was transfixed. An audience of CRITICS no less. Who applauded. Laughed. And the at the end didn’t want to leave. They stayed and READ THE CREDITS?!?! Oscar nominations for everyone! And the buzz now is that Colin Firth has won the Oscar…

Depends entirely on how sick Michael Douglas is – or isn’t…

I met Peggy Siegel in the sweltering hallway outside the “King’s Speech” junket in a remote part of the building that no one knew was there! Talk about clandestine!?!? Is Colin Firth THAT famous? Well, he sure is the talk of the Festival!

I typed this all yesterday and now I am just repeating myself. But it was a sublime movie and a sublime moment for me and him and Geoffrey Rush and their director, Tom Hooper, who all seemed astonished that I was their “Oscar messenger.” I think Tom Hooper said that.

I told Colin that it was the Best Film of the Year and that it’s one of the greatest screen performances EVAH! And it is…

I’m not overstating this. Everyone here is just breath-took by it. And I think it only had ONE measly P&I screening and won’t be seen in the States until November.

I also told Colin that he was going to win every single critics award and was for sure going to get nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor and that he COULD win.

This was after saying two days ago when I saw Wall Street 2 that it was Michael Douglas’…!!! OOOPS! I knew Colin was the other contender and I knew he would be very, very good. Excellent, too. But I didn’t judge that it would be a HISTORIC performance! But it is! It’s one of the great screen performances.

I told Colin this and he was really non-plussed. At a loss for words. And then he wondered whether or not he really would win…I think after losing last year to Jeff Bridges in “Crazy Heart” he’s not at all sure about things like this…

I said his role had everything. He’s playing a Royal. Brit, Brit, Brit AND he’s disabled. He’s got a handicap. His stutter, which is a VERY hard thing to play and play convincingly and SUSTAIN it for the entire film.

Geoffrey Rush is equally sublime as the Australian speech teacher who helps him overcome it and he’s equally magnificent.

He’ll be nominated for Best Supporting Actor and even though he already has an Oscar he could win there, too.

AND they’ve got Harvey Weinstein behind them!

The film that this reminded me the most of was “Shakespeare in Love” which Rush also scored a Supporting nom for but he didn’t win, though the film did. And Gwyneth. AND Colin Firth was actually  in that movie, too, as Gwyneth’s disliked fiancee…

So now I have to change my Facebook headline. Two days ago it was Michael Douglas’ to lose. But now I think he’s just lost it. To Colin Firth. Well, it will be a big critical hit, f’r sure.

And Colin said to me ON CAMERA “Can I carry you with me everywhere?”(Well, maybe he said “take me with you”…) And I said,

“Yes! I’m ostentatiously available!”

And THEN I get stuck in another TIFF near riot….They should’ve expected this. They had nothing strong programmed AGAINST “129 hours” this afternoon.

MISTAKE!

Opening “The King’s Speech” at the same time as the “Black Swan” as far as P&I is concerned was actually a brilliant stroke of programming. Nobody rioted and everybody got in – to one or the other. NOT THE CASE with “129 Hours.”

This just in — there was a fire alarm! They didn’t tell us! On the anniversary of 9/11!?!?! I could’ve DIED there!

I saw Tom O’Neill and also Rex Reed, at a distance. Neither looked happy. OMG! A BOMB SCARE! Or whatever it was.

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