Austin Film Fest: ‘The Humbling’ and ‘The Last Five Years’ Will Open, ‘Rosewater’ Will Close ... J.K. Simmons Stands as a Frontrunner For the Upcoming Oscars ... New York Film Fest: ‘Whiplash’ Continues to Drum Up Major Oscar Buzz ... FEINBERG FORECAST: How the Oscar Race Is Shaping Up During New York Film Fest ... Some Surprises May Emerge in the Best Picture Oscar Race ... New York Film Fest: ‘Maps to the Stars’ Gets Laughs But No Oscar Campaign ... New York Film Fest: ”71′ Offers Showcase for ‘Unbroken’ Star Jack O’Connell ... New York Film Fest: Ethan Hawke Reflects on His ‘Boyhood’/’Seymour’ Moment ...
Countdown to Oscars

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Toronto: Al Pacino’s ‘Manglehorn’ Still Lacks U.S. Distributor


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

One of the most special things about this year’s Toronto Film Festival, which wrapped up earlier this week, was seeing Al Pacino in top form in not one but two special presentations screenings.

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Friday, September 19, 2014

Ten Films to Catch at the New York Film Fest


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor

With the Telluride Film Festival and the Toronto Film Festival now over, all eyes are on the 52nd New York Film Festival, which runs Sept. 26 to Oct 12. The festival’s lineup includes some festival favorites from these past few weeks, including Whiplash and Foxcatcher, but the festival’s premieres have been gaining buzz since the lineup was released. Here is a list of the top 10 films to see in New York (in alphabetical order with their festival date):

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Friday, September 19, 2014

Tonys: ‘Love Letters’ and the Many Ways of Depicting the Passage of Time Through Art


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

As much as anything, Gregory Mosher‘s new Broadway revival ofA.R. Gurney‘s 1988 dramedy Love Letters — which opened Thursday night at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, will be running there through Feb. 15 (see THR‘s review) and may well contend for Tonys next spring — made me think about the wide variety of ways in which the passage of time can be conveyed through the different art forms.

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Friday, September 19, 2014

Britannia Awards to Honor Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo and Mike Leigh

By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

The Judge‘s lead actor Robert Downey, Jr., Foxcatcher‘s supporting actor Mark Ruffalo, Mr. Turner‘s writer-director Mike Leigh and two beloved British actresses of different generations, Dame Judi Dench and Emma Watson, will be this year’s honorees at BAFTA Los Angeles’ 23rd annual Britannia Awards on Oct. 30 at the Beverly Hilton, the organization announced Thursday.

The gala dinner and ceremony, which raises funds for BAFTA-LA’s education, preservation and philanthropic efforts, is an early and high-profile stop on the annual awards circuit that fetes Brits and non-Brits alike “who have dedicated their careers to advancing the art forms of the moving image in the US, UK and beyond.”

Comedian Rob Brydon will return as host for the second consecutive year. (The ceremony will air on BBC America on  Nov 2 at 9pm EST.) And BAFTA’s Bumble Ward and Deborah Kolar will serve as the event’s co-chairs.

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

More Stars are Making the Transition from Actor to Director


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor

For some actors, it is a natural progression to move from using their talents in front of the camera to testing their skills behind it. Though actors have been making the transition for years, 2013 was a particular popular year for actors-turned-directors. Among some of the releases throughout the year were Ben Stiller‘s The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Lake Bell’s In A World…, her directorial debut. The 2013 Toronto International Film Festival was the directorial launching pad of Jason Bateman’s Bad Words and Mike Myers’ Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon, and the festival also screened Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s directorial debut Don Jon and Ralph FiennesThe Invisible Woman.

Though many of these actors’ projects may not garner any awards, there are some that make their way to the Oscars, such as Ben Affleck’s Argo (2012), which won the best picture Oscar and was his third film as director. 2014 also has its fair share of actors-turned-directors’ projects.

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Best Animated Feature Oscar Race Just Got Even More Crowded

By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

This year’s best animated feature Oscar race, which is already jam-packed with as many as 17 eligible contenders — having just 16 automatically triggers an increase in the number of eventual nominees from three to five — is about to get even more crowded. That’s because Barrett Esposito‘s Henry & Me, a simply animated but charming and inspirational children’s film that features the vocal talents of Richard Gere and many other big names, including quite a few members of the New York Yankees organization, is in the process of being qualified for Oscar eligibility by its independent distributor, Reveal Animation Studios.

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Austin Film Fest: Writer-Centric Event to Screen Numerous Oscar Hopefuls

By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

The Austin Film Festival and Screenwriters Conference, which has become one of the many important stops on the awards season circuit over the last few years — particularly for Oscar- and Emmy-contending screenwriters — has announced the lineup for its 21st edition, which will take place in the Texas capital from Oct. 23-30.

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Potential Contenders for the Foreign Language Film Oscar Make Their Mark


By Anjelica Oswald
Managing Editor

As the Oct. 1 deadline approaches for foreign language submissions, countries are starting to name their entries or at least schedule their announcements. Germany, Turkey, Sweden, and Mexico are among the countries who have already announced their entries. Belgium intends on announcing its choice on Sept. 19, Canada is releasing its option Sept. 23 and Denmark is choosing its submission from a shortlist of three films on Sept. 18. Other countries have also scheduled their announcements for later this month.

A record 76 films were submitted to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences last year for best foreign language film. A shortlist of nine films was released in December and then the final five nominees were announced in January. In the end, Paolo Sorrentino‘s The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza) won Italy its 11th Oscar, the most foreign-language wins of any country. Italy has yet to announce an official submission, but they released a shortlist of seven films that they will choose from and announce on Sept. 24.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

New York Film Fest: Top-Secret Edward Snowden Doc Added to Lineup


By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

The New York Film Festival is entering its 52nd year, but never before, in its long and rich history, has it done what it did today: namely, added a film —Laura Poitras‘ new documentary about Edward SnowdenCITIZENFOUR — to its main slate after the lineup had already been announced.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

‘Pride’ Angles for Golden Globe Musical-Comedy Categories

By Scott Feinberg
The Hollywood Reporter

On Monday night, most of New York’s acting community, on their night off from the boards, could be found in one of two places. Many were attending the American Theatre Wing’s annual gala at the Plaza Hotel, where the legendary Angela Lansbury was feted. And the rest, it seemed, could be found at the historic Ziegfeld Theatre, where Stephen Sondheim, Mike Nichols and Scott Rudin — a Big Apple all-star trio, if ever there was one — hosted a special advance screening of Pride, a feel-good dramedy about a little-known slice of U.K. history which CBS Films will release on Sept. 26.

It had its world premiere as the closing night film of the Directors’ Fortnight section of the May’s Cannes Film Festival and its North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival last week, and now joins a relatively thin field of Golden Globe contenders in the musical or comedy categories.

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