Oscars 2012: Adam Predicts the Nominees

by     Posted 2 years, 334 days ago


As I’ve been covering awards season pretty extensively here on the site over the past few months, I figured it would be appropriate to (foolishly) try to predict the upcoming Oscar nominations. It’s been a fairly tame year, as a few frontrunners were singled out early in the race and have held their ground throughout the grueling awards season. We haven’t been without a few surprises, as Steven Spielberg’s War Horse took a massive tumble following snubs from most of the major guilds, and David Fincher has surged back into the race bringing his adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo with him.

Though there are plenty of safe bets when it comes to the 2012 Oscar nominations, there are still a few wildcards and tricky categories. I’ve put on my prognosticating cap (those interested can purchase one of these nifty hats at your local Target) and compiled a list of who and what I think will make the cut. Hit the jump to see how I think the nods will stack up when they’re announced on January 24th.

Writers Guild Award Nominations Announced; YOUNG ADULT, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, and THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO Nominated

by     Posted 2 years, 350 days ago


The Writers Guild of America has announced their nominations for the 2012 Writers Guild Awards, and some of their nominations are pretty terrible.  It’s nice to see nominations for Young Adult, The Descendants, and Bridesmaids.  It’s less nice to see nominations for slavish adaptations of poorly written novels like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and The Help.  There’s also a major snub for awards-season favorite The Artist, and before you mention the “no dialogue” aspect, there’s still a script and the movie was in contention.  The documentary nominations also overlooked the terrific Project Nim in favor of Pina, which is borderline unwatchable for anyone who doesn’t love modern dance.

Hit the jump for the full list of nominees.  Winners will be announced at the 2012 Writers Guild Awards on Sunday, February 19th. [Correction: The Artist was deemed ineligible by the WGA, but it's still a snub since the WGA's rules are kind of stupid in the first place]

97 Original Scores Up for Oscar; DRIVE and ATTACK THE BLOCK Ruled Ineligible

by     Posted 2 years, 363 days ago


As the 84th Academy Awards move closer, we’re starting to get a better sense of how things will pan out. We recently shared the 39 songs that will contend for the Best Original Song category, and now the Academy has announced the 97 original scores eligible for the Best Original Score award. AMPAS is notoriously picky when it comes to eligibility in this category, and as we feared the scores for both Drive and Attack the Block have been deemed ineligible. Also disappointing is the ineligibility of Alexandre Desplat’s mesmerizing score for The Tree of Life.

While it’s upsetting to see some of the year’s best work side-lined, there’s plenty to be happy about. I was a huge fan of Howard Shore’s work in Hugo and Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’s score for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, as well as The Chemical Brothers’ brilliant work in the criminally underseen Hanna. Hit the jump for the full list, as well as who I think will make the cut.

39 Songs Contend for Best Original Song Oscar; Nominees Include THE MUPPETS and CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER

by     Posted 3 years, 2 days ago


The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences announced today that 39 eligible songs will contend for the Best Original Song Oscar this year. Important to note is that a relatively recent rule change states that songs must be judged in the capacity that they appear in each film. In early January the voting body will get together and watch clips from each eligible movie in which the 39 songs are featured, after which they will determine the nominees. The list of eligible songs include three tracks from The Muppets, Sigur Ros frontman Jonsi’s song “Gathering Stories” (which director Cameron Crowe co-wrote) from We Bought a Zoo, and composer/songwriter/eight-time Oscar-winner Alan Menken’s “Star Spangled Man” from Captain America: The First Avenger. I’m partial to Jonsi’s work or “Man or Muppet” from The Muppets, but we’ll see how the Academy’s taste stacks up towards the end of January.

Hit the jump to check out the full list of eligible songs. The 84th Academy Award nominations will be announced on January 24th.

National Board of Review Names HUGO Best Film of the Year; DRIVE, THE ARTIST, and THE DESCENDANTS Make Top 10

by     Posted 3 years, 20 days ago


The National Board of Review has announced their honors for 2011.  As always, the wide selection allows the NBR to technically have a say in directing awards season, and their picks remain solid.  While I didn’t go nuts over Hugo, a lot of people did and so it’s not surprising NBR gave it Best Picture and named Martin Scorsese as Best Director.  For the most part, I like all of NBR’s choices.  I’m glad any time Drive gets attention, the acting picks are all worthy, and I’m happy Crime After Crime and 13 Assassins got some love.  Notable snubs include Young Adult, Moneyball, and Martha Marcy May Marlene.  Of course, anything Clint Eastwood does has to make NBR’s Top 10 so that’s why a spot is wasted on J. Edgar.

Hit the jump for the full list of winners.

Director Tom McCarthy Talks WIN WIN, THE MILLION DOLLAR ARM, Working for Pixar & Making UP, More

by     Posted 3 years, 254 days ago

Paul Giamatti & Tom Shaffer Win Win slice

After three weeks of rave reviews in selected cities like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Dallas and Phoenix, Win Win expanded to a host of new cities this weekend.  It paid off with $5,398 per theater, (in the top 5 averages over the past 3 days) and $1.22 million overall.  We’ve spread out our interviews with the film’s Oscar-nominated stars Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan and newcomer Alex Shaffer through the platform release because highly praised independent films which actually exceed that hype are rare and deserve all the extended support that sites like the one you’re reading can provide.

That brings us to our fourth installment: an interview with the film’s Oscar-nominated filmmaker Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent, The Visitor and Up).  For a writer, director and actor who is so meticulous about his work on both sides of the camera, he was surprisingly open about his process in all three disciplines.  Hit the jump for the interview’s audio and transcript, including a look inside Pixar, the latest on The Million Dollar Arm, how Patricia Clarkson one-upped him on The Station Agent and his memories of an indie film trailblazer.  Continued after the jump.

Alex Shaffer Interview WIN WIN

by     Posted 3 years, 263 days ago


Win Win is easily one of the best-reviewed films of 2011.  The film’s success is especially impressive, given that it rests so heavily on the performance of a teenager whose only prior acting experience came in a high school class and a small role in his 6th grade production of The Pirates of Penzance.  17-year-old Alex Shaffer delivers a strikingly assured film debut opposite three Oscar nominees: (Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan and Burt Young), an Emmy winner (Bobby Cannavale) and a 6-time Emmy nominee (Jeffrey Tambor).  Luckily for the film, which continues its national rollout this weekend in a host of new cities and theaters, Alex wasn’t phased.

Shaffer filled Collider in on how much his life has changed since he went to the fateful audition that he had to be hassled into attending by a friend.  Hit the jump for the audio and transcript of our lively exchange, including stories of why he had a hard time staying awake on set, whether he’d still pick wrestling over acting and which famous actor had him tongue-tied at Sundance.

Amy Ryan Exclusive Interview WIN WIN; Also Talks IN TREATMENT and THE OFFICE

by     Posted 3 years, 272 days ago


The next few days have big things in store for Amy Ryan.  Tonight’s highly publicized episode of The Office features her character, Holly Flax, getting engaged to Michael Scott (Steve Carell).  Tomorrow, her newest widely praised film Win Win expands into a number of major markets across the U.S.  She recently filled Collider in on both, along with news of whether she’ll be back on In Treatment. Hit the jump for our exclusive sit-down.

Paul Giamatti Exclusive Interview WIN WIN; Plus Updates on the Philip K. Dick Biopic, a Spider-Man Villain He’d Love to Play & More

by     Posted 3 years, 278 days ago


Fresh off a triumphant debut at the Sundance Film Festival, Win Win kicks off a national rollout in New York and Los Angeles today.  Collider sat down with its star, Paul Giamatti for a fun back-and-forth on the film, along with some surprising revelations.  Hit the jump for the audio and transcript, along with his vision for the long-gestating Philip K. Dick biopic, tales of the undeniable sway his American Splendor counterpart Harvey Pekar had with women, and a Spider-Man villain Giamatti’s eyed since childhood.

Now Showing: March 18, 2011 – PAUL, THE LINCOLN LAWYER, LIMITLESS

by     Posted 3 years, 279 days ago


This coming weekend will feature three new releases starring some of Hollywood’s hottest hunks. First up, Bradley Cooper, in Limitless, will portray a man who has reached the apex of the human condition with a little pharmaceutical assistance. Next, Matthew McConaughey plays The Lincoln Lawyer, a defense attorney who lands the case of the lifetime, only to find it might be more than he bargained for. And for the sexiest of the bunch, we have the highly anticipated Paul, the dirty-talking alien (voiced by Seth Rogen) who accompanies Simon Pegg and Nick Frost on a cross-country trip. Two out of three ain’t bad, ladies.

Hit the jump for all our coverage, including trailers and synopses, on these headliners as well as limited releases Cracks, The Music Never Stopped, and Win Win.

7 Clips from WIN WIN Starring Paul Giamatti and Amy Ryan

by     Posted 3 years, 282 days ago


One of the best films I saw at Sundance was Tom McCarthy’s Win Win.  The film centers on a struggling lawyer (Paul Giamatti) who inadvertently ends up housing a young teenage wrestler (Alex Shaffer). While the film is somewhat lighter than McCarthy’s previous films (The Station Agent and The Visitor) it still hits strong emotional beats without coming off as cloying and dodges the indie comedy trap of being quirky for the sake of being quirky.  Instead, McCarthy rests Win Win on honest performances of strong, well-written characters.

Hit the jump to check out the clips and click here for my full review.  Win Win also stars Amy Ryan, Bobby Cannavale, Melanie Lynskey, Burt Young, and Jeffrey Tambor.  It opens in limited release this Friday.

Trailer for WIN WIN Starring Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan, and Bobby Cannavale

by     Posted 3 years, 322 days ago


One of the best movies I saw at Sundance this year was Tom McCarthy’s Win Win.  The film is warm, touching, and incredibly funny.  Fox Searchlight has now released a trailer for the flick and I think it does a fine job of selling the picture without giving too much away.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer and click here to read my review of the film.  Win Win stars Paul Giamatti, Amy Ryan, Melanie Lynskey, Jeffrey Tambor, Bobby Cannavale, and Alex Shaffer.  It opens March 18th.

Sundance 2011: WIN WIN Review

by     Posted 3 years, 333 days ago


I still have plenty of movies left to see at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, but I don’t know if any will leave me smiling as much as Tom McCarthy’s Win Win.  The movie a gigantic ball of warmth filled with terrific performances, smart humor, and genuine emotions.  Even a glaring narrative question doesn’t slow the film down because you’re too busy caring about the characters and their journey.  Everything in Win Win is earned, from the laughs to the sentiment, and the payoff is tremendous.

First Clip from WIN WIN Starring Paul Giamatti

by     Posted 3 years, 333 days ago


In our recent interview with Paul Giamatti — shortly before he won the Golden Globe for his performance in Barney’s Version — one of the many projects he talked about was Win Win.  You sense  his enthusiasm for the movie and his respect for writer/director Tom McCarthy:

“It’s a very nice movie directed by this guy Tom, written and directed by this guy Tom McCarthy who did The Station Agent and The Visitor… And he wrote Up too. He wrote the movie Up. He’s a great guy. It’s a great movie.”

Giamatti plays “a disheartened attorney moonlighting as a high school wrestling coach” in Win Win, which just premiered at Sundance in advance of a March 25 release from Fox Searchlight.  Hit the jump to see an amusing clip from the movie of Giamatti and co-star Bobby Cannavale, plus brief Q&A’s with Giamatti and young actor Alex Shaffer at premiere.

2011 Sundance Film Festival Premieres Announced; Includes MY IDIOT BROTHER, WIN WIN, and REAGAN

by     Posted 4 years, 19 days ago


Sundance has announced the premieres playing out-of-competition at this year’s 2011 Sundance Film Festival.  While we knew that Kevin Macdonald’s documentary Life in a Day and Kevin Smith’s Red State had already made the cut, we now have some other exciting films to add to the list.  Among the films in the “Premieres” category, I’m particularly stoked for Cedar Rapids (starring Ed Helms and John C. Reilly), My Idiot Brother (starring Paul Rudd), The Details (starring Tobey Maguire and Elizabeth Banks), Margin Call (starring Kevin Spacey and Paul Bettany), Salvation Boulevard (starring Pierce Brosnan and Jennifer Connelly), and Tom McCarthy’s Win Win (starring Paul Giamatti and Amy Ryan).

But I’m even more jazzed for some of the documentaries.  There’s a Reagan biopic from Eugene Jarecki (Why We Fight), Morgan Spurlock’s The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, and Steve James’ The Interrupters, just to name a few.  Hit the jump for the full line-up.  Click here for a list of the films playing in-competition and click here for a list of the other films playing out-of-competition.  The 2011 Sundance Film Festival runs from January 20th – 30th.

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