October 22, 2016
        Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race        

Sundance buzz swirls around “Margin Call” with Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: The film industry continues to brave the harsh winter weather and long lines in Park City, Utah, for the annual Sundance Film Festival. Early word out of Sundance usually revolves around the actual films. As the fest progresses this week, though, we’ll hear more and more about distribution deals and purchases (particularly on Sunday, when Kevin Smith hosts that live “Red State” auction immediately after his new film premieres).

The first film at this year’s fest to generate both positive reviews and purchase buzz, however, is “Margin Call,” a financial thriller written and directed by J.C. Chandor that stars Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto and Paul Bettany. Set during the early stages of the current financial crisis, it has been compared favorably to Oliver Stone’s “Wall Street” (a good sign).

Not so good, however, was the Twitter response at the start of the fest when “Call” was screened in a tiny theater, meaning several press and industry folks who wanted to see the film were turned away.

But those who saw it were very impressed. In fact, sources are telling the Hollywood Reporter that “several offers have already come in” for the film, and that The Weinstein Co., Phase 4, Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions and Focus were among the reps who made it into that first industry screening.

The film, according to THR, is “screening in the festival’s Premieres section, with its first public screening coming Tuesday night,” so we’ll continue to track the film’s progress as Sundance chugs on.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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