12 YEARS A SLAVE Wins Best Picture; GRAVITY Wins Seven Oscars Including Best Director

by     Posted 294 days ago

12-years-a-slave-slice

For the first time in at least six year, we have a Best Picture winner that will stand the test of time.  Cynics thought the Academy’s highest honor would go to American Hustle, the numbers were pointing slightly towards Gravity, but the Oscar ultimately went to 12 Years a Slave, the definitive major motion picture about slavery.  The ceremony itself was an absolute chore, but it was wonderful to see Steve McQueen’s harrowing drama pick up the win at the end.  Additionally, Gravity–another great movie–received plenty of love by earning seven Oscars including Alfonso Cuaron for Best Director.  Among the acting categories, there were no surprises: Matthew McConaughey for Best Actor, Cate Blanchett for Best Actress, Jared Leto for Best Supporting Actor, and Lupita Nyong’o for Best Supporting Actress.  It was not a shocking night, and the biggest “upset” was Mr. Hublot beating out Get a Horse! for Best Animated Short Film.  Personally, I’m pretty satisfied with this year’s winners, especially since Spike Jonze took home Best Original Screenplay for Her.

Hit the jump to check out the full list of this year’s Oscar winners, and click here for my live-blog.

12 YEARS A SLAVE Wins Big at Independent Spirit Awards with Best Film, Director, Supporting Actress, and More

by     Posted 295 days ago

12-years-a-slave

On the eve of the 86th Academy Awards, the Independent Spirit Awards honored the very best in independent cinema, but the big winner at the Spirits and the Oscars could very well be one and the same.  12 Years a Slave took the top prize at the Spirit Awards as well as four other trophies: Best Director (Steve McQueen), Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong’o), Best Cinematography (Sean Bobbitt), and Best Screenplay (John Ridley).  The pic is neck-and-neck in the heated Oscar race for Best Picture with Gravity, but I think the latter might eke out the win.  Elsewhere at the Spirits, Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto continued to steamroll the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor categories, respectively, for Dallas Buyers Club, and Fruitvale Station won Best First Feature.

Hit the jump to take a look at the full list of winners, and check back on Collider tomorrow night as our own Matt Goldberg live blogs the Academy Awards ceremony.

Adam Predicts the Oscars Part 3: Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, and More

by     Posted 296 days ago

oscars-gravity-12-years-a-slave

After running down predictions for the Oscars in a number of categories over the past two days, we’ve now come to the big ones.  As I’ve said many times before over the course of this awards season, this is quite possibly the closest Best Picture race in history; a coin flip would not be unwarranted.  And while some of the acting categories are pretty sewn up, Supporting Actress remains a bit tricky and there’s some intense competition in the race for Best Original Screenplay.  I’ve had a lot of fun covering this year’s awards race over the last five months with Oscar Beat and I look forward to doing it all over again this fall, but for now here’s the culmination of this season’s coverage.

After the jump you’ll find my predictions for the final categories ahead of this weekend’s Academy Awards ceremony as well as my full predictions list for the ceremony, and if you missed Part 1 or Part 2 be sure to check them out.  The 86th Academy Awards will air on Sunday, March 2nd on ABC, during which time our own Matt Goldberg will be live-blogging the ceremony right here on Collider.

Adam Predicts the Oscars Part 2: Best Cinematography, Costume Design, Production Design, Makeup, and Short Categories

by     Posted 297 days ago

oscars-gravity-american-hustle-great-gatsby

Continuing on with predictions for this Sunday’s Oscar ceremony, today we take a look at the rest of the technical categories and the shorts—aka where Oscar ballots are made or lost.  I surmised that Gravity would clean up in most of yesterday’s categories, but the love will have to be spread around when it comes to Costume Design, Makeup & Hairstyling, and possibly Production Design.  After the jump, I run through these categories as well as the contenders for Best Animated Short, Live-Action Short, and Documentary Short in Part 2 of my Oscar predictions.

DALLAS BUYERS CLUB Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 298 days ago

dallas-buyers-club-matthew-mcconaughey-slice

Years from now, I suspect that critics will look back and declare the 2013-2014 film season as “The Year of the McConaughey.”  After a decade of squandering his acting chops and Southern drawl in mediocre Kate Hudson rom-coms, McConaughey has had the ultimate breakout season, with Mud, HBO’s wildly popular True Detective, and his upcoming lead in Christopher Nolan’s highly anticipated Interstellar.  Garnering rave reviews and earning him a Best Actor nomination, Dallas Buyers Club is yet another exceptional standout in McConaughey’s recent breakout.  Hit the jump to read my Blu-ray review of the film. 

Best Picture Nominee Posters Recreated in LEGO Form

by     Posted 311 days ago

best-picture-lego-posters-slice

The LEGO Movie was massive hit with both audiences and critics when it opened last weekend, and deservingly so given that the film is an absolute joy to take in.  I’ll be shocked if it doesn’t make the Best Animated Feature shortlist for next year’s Oscars, but before we start talking about the 2015 ceremony, we’ve got this year’s Academy Awards to take care of.  In a bit of zeitgeist synergy, the posters for all nine of this year’s Best Picture nominees have been recreated in LEGO form, making for a pretty amusing series of one-sheets.  It’s shaping up to be one of the closest Best Picture races in years, with Gravity and 12 Years a Slave in a virtual tie for first and American Hustle playing the very possible spoiler.  We’ve still got a few weeks to go before the awards season comes to a close, but for now take some delight in seeing LEGO-fied versions of the nominees, complete with American Hustle’s plunging necklines.

Hit the jump to take a look at some of the posters.  The 2014 Oscars will be hosted by Ellen Degeneres on Sunday, March 2nd.

Jared Leto Talks DALLAS BUYERS CLUB, Preparing for the Role, Staying in Character, and More at SBIFF 2014

by     Posted 319 days ago

dallas-buyers-club-jared-leto

After taking a six-year break from acting to tour the world as the frontman for the band 30 Seconds to Mars, Jared Leto returned with his latest role as Rayon, a transgender AIDS patient in Dallas Buyers Club, that has been earning him awards and acclaim.  He has an Oscar nomination for a Best Supporting Actor, and has already picked up a SAG Award, Critics’ Choice Award and Golden Globe, where he did get some criticism for joking during his acceptance speech.  That being considered, I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that he came under fire from a heckler who didn’t feel he deserved to be honored for his performance at the SBIFF Virtuosos Award, on account of him being a straight man portraying someone who is transgender, but he definitely handled it like a pro.

During the Q&A, Jared Leto talked about why he doesn’t like to watch the films he’s in, where he got inspiration from, why it was important to him to stay in character throughout the shoot, finding truth in his performance, whether he likes to use music to get into character, and how he feels the six years he took off from acting helped him with playing Rayon.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

New to Blu-ray: DALLAS BUYERS CLUB, ABOUT TIME, ESCAPE PLAN, and More

by     Posted 320 days ago

about-time-dallas-buyers-club-escape-plan

This week’s new Blu-ray releases include a serious Oscar contender, an emotional father-son story, an 80s throwback, and more.  Briefly:

12 YEARS A SLAVE Takes Home Best Picture at Critics Choice Awards; GRAVITY, AMERICAN HUSTLE, and LONE SURIVOR Win Genre Awards

by     Posted 339 days ago

12-years-a-slave-slice

The Critics’ Choice Movie Awards were announced tonight, and 12 Years a Slave took home Best Picture.  The Critics’ Choice Awards have lined up with the Oscars in six of the last seven Best Pictures, but it’s worth noting that the Broadcast Film Critics Association spread the wealth around with genre awards to the other Oscar favorites, Gravity (Best Sci-Fi/Horror Movie) and American Hustle (Best Comedy).  Lone Survivor only managed two Oscar nominations for the sound categories, but found some love here as the Best Action Movie.

Hit the jump for the full list of winners, including ten different acting awards.

2014 Oscar Nominations Announced; AMERICAN HUSTLE and GRAVITY Lead with 10 Nominations Each [Updated with Commentary]

by     Posted 339 days ago

2014-oscars-slice

The nominations for the 86th Academy Awards have been announced. American Hustle and Gravity lead with 10 nominations each, while 12 Years a Slave isn’t too far behind with 9 nominations.  Looking over my predictions, there weren’t actually too many surprises this morning–at least no genuine “snubs” on the scale of Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow last year.  Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale made the Best Actor cut over Robert Redford and Tom HanksHer, Dallas Buyers Club, and Philomena all got Best Picture nominations over Saving Mr. Banks, and Sally Hawkins landed a Best Supporting Actress nomination for her work in Blue Jasmine, seemingly taking Oprah Winfrey‘s spot from Lee Daniels’ The Butler.  Also, the Academy apparently did not take a liking to Saving Mr. Banks, as the film missed out on a Best Picture nomination and a Best Actress nomination for Emma Thompson.

Hit the jump to take a look at the full nominations list.  The 86th Oscars will be broadcast March 2nd on ABC. [Update: I've added my commentary on some of the categories after the jump.]

Adam Predicts the 2014 Oscar Nominees

by     Posted 341 days ago

2014-oscars-slice

Well, folks, the time has finally come.  I’ve been covering this year’s awards season since last fall when we launched our awards column Oscar Beat, and after running through the ups and downs of the season thus far, it’s now time to predict which films, performances, screenplays, and other cinematic achievements from 2013 the Academy will choose to single out.  I feel very confident about some of my choices while others feel like more of a crapshoot.  One thing’s for sure: this has been quite an interesting season thus far, and there’s still no consensus with regards to some of the big winners.

Hit the jump as I take a stab at predicting the 2014 Oscar nominees.  The nominations will be announced at 5:30am PST on January 16th.

3-Way Tie Leads to Seven Nominations from Cinematographers Society; Costume Designer Guild Nominates Braless Wonder AMERICAN HUSTLE

by     Posted 347 days ago

american-hustle-cast-slice

The major guilds have all chimed in with their nominees, and as Adam has pointed out in his Oscar Beat column, this gives us a clearer picture of who might be getting Oscar nominations when they’re announced next week.  But it’s important to remember that guilds usually share members with the Academy, and now the American Society of Cinematographers and the Costume Designers Guild have chimed in with their nominees.

If you need proof that 2013 featured some beautifully shot pictures, the ASC ended up nominating seven films instead of five because there was a three-way tie.  As for the costume designers, the plunging necklines of American Hustle earned a nomination as did the also-glamorous The Great Gatsby.  I’m also pleased with the nomination for Her.  One of the things I noticed on my third viewing was the subtle way that designer Casey Storm provided a “futuristic” fashion by having the men wear high wool pants and button the top button of collared shirts.  It’s just another nice touch to a great movie.  Hit the jump for a full list of the nominees from both guilds.

Oscar Beat: The Guilds Have Spoken, So Where Does This Leave Us for Oscar?

by     Posted 348 days ago

oscars-best-picture-gravity-12-years-a-slave-slice

We’re very, very close to the nominations announcement for the 86th Academy Awards, and now that the various guilds—the Screen Actors Guild, the Producers Guild, the Writers Guild, and the Directors Guild—have announced their nominees, we have a pretty clear picture of what we might expect with regards to Oscar.  As I’ve said before, one of the biggest predictors of how the Academy will vote comes with the guilds, since the guild membership has a strong crossover with Academy membership.  With just over a week to go before the Oscar nominations are announced, now feels like a good time to take a glance at the current landscape to see what films are shaping up to be Oscar favorites, and which films might miss this cut.

Hit the jump to read this latest installment of Oscar Beat in which I take a closer look at this morning’s DGA nominations, offer an overview of which films have landed the most nods from the various guilds, and what that means for Oscar.

2014 Writers Guild Nominations Include HER, DALLAS BUYERS CLUB, WOLF OF WALL STREET, and LONE SURVIVOR

by     Posted 352 days ago

her-joaquin-phoenix-slice

The Oscar precursors are in full swing.  Yesterday we got a look at the nominations for the Producers Guild Awards—a solid predictor for the Best Picture Oscar category—and today the Writers Guild of America has unveiled its nominations for the 2014 awards.  The Best Original Screenplay nominees include Nebraska, Her, and American Hustle, while the Best Adapted category is filled out by the likes of Before Midnight, Captain Phillips, and The Wolf of Wall Street.  The major surprise in today’s WGA announcements is the inclusion of Peter Berg’s Lone Survivor script for Best Adapted Screenplay and the befuddling absence of Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis for Original Screenplay.

Hit the jump for more, including the full list of WGA nominations and my analysis with regards to what this means for Oscar.  The 2014 WGA Awards will be held on February 1st.

Oscar Beat: Analyzing What the Producers Guild Awards Nominations Mean for Oscar

by     Posted 353 days ago

dallas-buyers-club-matthew-mcconaughey-slice

When it comes to predicting the Oscars, there are a number of factors to take into account.  The early critics awards carry some weight, as does a film’s overall box office performance, but the most significant gauge with regards to Oscar voting comes with the guild awards.  The four major guilds—producers, directors, writers, and actors—have a large amount of crossover with Academy membership, which means that many of the same people that are voting for the Oscars are also voting in the PGA, DGA, WGA, and SAG awards.  Earlier today we got our first look at the Producers Guild of America nominations, and there were a couple of minor surprises mixed in with the usual suspects.

In this edition of Collider’s awards column, Oscar Beat, I’ll be analyzing what this year’s PGA nominations mean with regards to the upcoming 86th Academy Awards race.  Read on after the jump.

Click Here