‘Interstellar’ Looks to Join a Short List of Space-Related Films to Garner Best Picture Oscar Noms ... Comedic Foreign Language Films Rarely Receive Oscar Nominations ... IDA Nominations: Doc Community Gets Behind ‘Citizenfour,’ ‘Finding Vivian Maier’ (Analysis) ... Jessica Chastain’s Incredible Rise ... Oscar Contender and New Marvel Superhero Chadwick Boseman on His Journey to Stardom ... ‘Mr. Turner’ Could Lead Timothy Spall to An Oscar Nomination ... Christopher Nolan’s ‘Interstellar’ May Not Be the Awards Juggernaut Everyone Expected ... Few Women-Centric Films Have Garnered Best Picture Nominations ...
Countdown to Oscars

Friday, October 31, 2014

‘Interstellar’ Looks to Join a Short List of Space-Related Films to Garner Best Picture Oscar Noms


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor 

Christopher Nolan‘s Interstellar is hoping to join Guardians of the Galaxy, another space-related film, at the top of the box office after it opens Nov. 5 and could garner a best picture Oscar nomination. In the trailer, Matthew McConaughey‘s character says, “We used to look up in the sky and wonder at our place in the stars; now we just look down and worry about our place in the dirt,” so one wonders how often the Academy looks skyward for best picture nominees and if voting members have set a precedent for space films to do well at the Oscars. Though many of the voting members came of age when President John F. Kennedy said we were going to put the first man on the moon, only six space-related films have been nominated for best picture: Gravity (2013), District 9 (2009), Avatar (2009), Apollo 13 (1995), The Right Stuff (1983) and Star Wars (1977). (1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial isn’t mentioned, because it consists of an alien who came to Earth rather than humans studying or exploring space.) Here are 10 of the best space-related films that were unable to secure best picture nominations (in chronological order):

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Comedic Foreign Language Films Rarely Receive Oscar Nominations


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor 

Damian Szifron’s Wild Tales (Relatos Salvajes) has been met with rave reviews since its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival for its humorous stories and unconventional methods. The feature film consists of six thematically similar, yet unrelated shorts. Wild Tales is Argentina’s submission for best foreign-language film at the Oscars and is one of 83 films up for consideration. Nine films will make the shortlist in January, but only five will be nominated. Looking at films that have been nominated in the 21st century, comedies haven’t had much success at being submitted or nominated, but Wild Tales could be one of the exceptions.

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

IDA Nominations: Doc Community Gets Behind ‘Citizenfour,’ ‘Finding Vivian Maier’ (Analysis)


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

As you may have read, the International Documentary Association, or IDA — a group comprising about 2,000 members of the worldwide documentary community — announced its nominations for the 30th IDA Awards, the awards ceremony that it hosts each year in celebration of docs. (This year’s gathering will take place at the Paramount Theatre on the Paramount lot on Dec. 5.)

While only a sampling of IDA members weigh in on IDA Award nominations, all IDA members are invited to vote to determine the winners, and many of the roughly 200 members of the Academy’s documentary branch are also IDA members, so pundits tend to regard the IDA’s choice of nominees and winners as indicators — as strong as any, really, with the possible exception of the Cinema Eye Honors — of how the Oscars will turn out, as well.

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Jessica Chastain’s Incredible Rise


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor 

From a newcomer award at the Deauville Film Festival in 2011 to a career tribute this fall, two-time Oscar nominee Jessica Chastain has come a long way in just three years. This year, she has been a part of four films: Christopher Nolan’s potential best picture nominee Interstellar, which opens in select theaters Nov. 5; J.C. Chandor’s A Most Violent Year, which is opening AFI Fest Nov. 6; Liv Ullmann’s Miss Julie, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival; and Ned Benson’s The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and is a combination of 2013’s The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Him.

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Oscar Contender and New Marvel Superhero Chadwick Boseman on His Journey to Stardom


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

I don’t think I’ve seen a better performance in 2014 than the one that Chadwick Boseman gives as the late James Brown in Tate Taylor‘s Get on Up. It is straight-up transformative stuff — Boseman sings, dances and starts to even look just like Brown, “The Godfather of Soul” who died in 2006 — and if anyone is worthy of a best actor Oscar nomination in this remarkably crowded year for the category, he is. Consequently, I was delighted to have the chance to sit down with the 37-year-old in New York earlier this month for an extensive conversation about his rise to stardom.

Boseman hasn’t been in the public eye for very long so he looks, to you and me, like an overnight sensation: he hit most people’s radar in the spring of 2013, thanks to his quiet but stirring portrayal of Jackie Robinson in Brian Helgeland‘s 42; then, in August 2014, he brought James back to life in Get on Up in a performance that seemed to quiet any doubters about his talents; and, on Tuesday, his fame and fortune were secured with Marvel’s big announcement that he has signed to star as the superhero Black Panther in five films, beginning with Captain America: Civil War.

However, as he emphasized to me, his story is a little more complicated than that.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

‘Mr. Turner’ Could Lead Timothy Spall to An Oscar Nomination


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor 

Timothy Spall and director Mike Leigh have worked together on five different films, including Secrets & Lies (1996), which resulted in Leigh’s first Oscar nomination, and Topsy-Turvy (1999). Leigh has received seven Oscar nominations since 1997, but Spall has never received recognition from the Academy. That could change this year with Leigh’s Mr. Turner, which features Spall as the British landscape painter J.M.W. Turner. The film has been praised and Spall’s portrayal of the obsessive painter garnered him the best actor award at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, which makes him the latest character actor to get a boost from a Leigh film.

Spall’s Mr. Turner co-star, Lesley Manville, has worked with Leigh for multiple films and received a BAFTA nomination for Another Year (2010). Marianne Jean-Baptiste and Brenda Blethyn, Spall’s co-stars in Secrets & Lies, both received Oscar nominations for their roles in the film. Sally Hawkins received a Golden Globe nomination for her role in Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky (2008) and received her first Oscar nomination for Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine (2013). Spall could receive his first Oscar nomination for Leigh’s Mr. Turner.

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Christopher Nolan’s ‘Interstellar’ May Not Be the Awards Juggernaut Everyone Expected


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

Few filmmakers working today are as revered by critics and audiences as Christopher Nolan, who makes visually extraordinary films built around sophisticated plots. If there has been a knock on them, it is that they sometimes seem more interested in technology than humans, resulting in awe-inspiring but emotionally cold moviegoing experiences. This, some have reasoned, is why the Academy famously withheld a best picture nom from Nolan’s 2008 masterpiece The Dark Knight — a decision so widely criticized that it directly led to the Academy’s expansion of the best picture category. And it is why the Academy has barely acknowledged his other films with the exception of Inception (and even then his peers in the directors branch still neglected to nominate him).

Nolan’s latest and most ambitious film yet, Interstellar, appears to be his attempt to redress this. It is a drama set in the future and largely in outer space, but it aims to be a story about love and family. And yet, in doing so, my sense — and that of most others with whom I’ve discussed the film — is that it loses the narrative coherence that defined even his most complex earlier efforts. Consequently, I no longer believe that it is going to be the film to beat at the Oscars, but rather that it is much more of a question mark.

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Few Women-Centric Films Have Garnered Best Picture Nominations


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor 

Tracks and Wild are adapted from memoirs about women who venture on thousand-mile journeys and Gone Girl is an adaptation of a fictional novel, but all three films center around women and all three books were written by women.

These female-centric stories resonate more with women and often do well at the box office, Gone Girl opened number one at the box office and led for two weeks until Fury opened Oct. 17, but can they be propelled to Oscar nominations, especially with Academy voters being overwhelmingly (76 percent) male?

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Sunday, October 26, 2014

FEINBERG FORECAST: ‘Interstellar’ Launches, Gotham Nominates and PGA Conferences


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

Every week through the 87th Oscars on Feb. 22, 2015, The Hollywood Reporter‘s awards analyst Scott Feinberg will post an updated “Feinberg Forecast,” wherein he presents a summary of major developments since the last update that helped to shape his current opinions and then lists his revised projections. For more about Feinberg and how he arrives at his projections, scroll to the bottom of this post.

Factoring into this week’s Feinberg Forecast…

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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Produced By: Harvey Weinstein Calls for New Producing Credits, Defends ‘Crouching Tiger’s’ Day-and-Date Release


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

Harvey Weinstein called on the Producers Guild of America to create new producing credits that would delineate between creative and financial producers in an appearance Saturday at the PGA’s first ever Produced By conference held in New York. During the course of a 45-minute conversation that I conducted with the Oscar-winning producer and co-chief of The Weinstein Co., who was also co-chief of Miramax from 1979 until 2005, he argued that more specific producing credits would help avoid situations like “that five-people-on-stage car crash” that he was a part of when Shakespeare in Love won the best picture Oscar in 1999. He also defended Netflix’s decision to release Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: The Green Legend day-and-date in Imax Theaters and on Netflix, calling the company’s execs “visionaries,” even though that move led to an outcry from theater owners. And he explained why he feels that the nickname “Harvey Scissorhands” that he got for allegedly meddling with directors’ visions in the editing room is undeserved.

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