September 24, 2015
        Could "The Martian" be this year's blockbuster hollywood Best Picture nominee?                Zooey Deschanel in "The Driftless Area" at the Aruba International Film Festival: another spot for indie film                Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling - "The Big Short" enters 2015 and could shake the Oscar race up                "Room" wins the People's Choice Award at the Toronto Film Festival                “Inside Out”: Looking at potential Best Animated Feature Contenders                "Black Mass" could get Johnny Depp back in the Oscar game                J.J. Abrams and Denis Villeneuve: Ten potential first time writer/director nominees for Oscar in 2015                Roger Deakins offers up some of his very best cinematography in "Sicario"                "The Martian" launches itself as an awards hopeful at the Toronto Film Festival                "Steve Jobs": Oscar predictions for September                "Sleeping with Other People" is one of the most charming films of 2015                Sandra Bullock looks like a contender in the Trailer for "Our Brand is Crisis"                Sam Smith will sing the theme song for the upcoming 007 film "Spectre"                Richard Gere is an under the radar Best Actor contender for "Time Out of Mind"                Telluride and Venice launch festival debuts into the Oscar race        

Anne Hathaway and James Franco on ‘Vanity Fair’

By Roger Friedman Vanity Fair should be announcing its cover stars for its annual Oscar issue any minute now. But I am told that the number 1 Hollywood magazine snared Oscar hosts Anne Hathaway and James Franco for the cover. The shoot, held in mid December, also boasts up and comer Anthony Mackie and “Buried” star Ryan Reynolds. Natalie Portman had been scheduled for the shoot, but the word is her pregnancy prevented it. (Maybe she had morning sickness.)

It’s a three panel deal so there are plenty more A listers. The cover is described Prince like as a new power generation.

The funny thing is how everyone–the trades, the regular mags like Newsweek–are all trying to copy the Vanity Fair Hollywood issue. It won’t work.

Meantime, I hear that Vanity Fair has a socko story about Harvey Weinstein’s “comeback” by Bryan Burroughs. He’s bullish on Harvey, as is a documentary that’s supposed to screen in Toronto on February 10th.

The fact is that Harvey and brother Bob weathered the rough transition from the end of their Disney deal through the recession and some poor film choices. With “The Reader” and “inglourious Basterds,” they started the long climb back. And they were refinanced brilliantly. And refocused on their core business.

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About Roger Friedman

Roger Friedman began his column in April after 10 years with Fox News where he helped create Friedman’s prior experience on the Internet is with MSN’s Cinemania column. Friedman also wrote the Intelligencer column as a contributing editor at "New York Magazine," where he covered the O.J. Simpson criminal trial. In addition, Friedman has been involved in book publishing and filmmaking (Only the Strong Survive). For more about Roger go to

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