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        

George Clooney takes us behind the scenes of “Ides of March” – AWARDS ALLEY

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Most talents would be thrilled to have one viable Oscar contender in the mix as we head into the final quarter of 2011. George Clooney, however, has two legitimate awards contenders under his belt, and the general public gets their first peek at one this Friday.

Clooney’s fourth directorial effort, “The Ides of March,” does for political campaigns what his Oscar-nominated “Good Night, and Good Luck” did for broadcast journalism. Once again, Clooney (who also stars) assembles a top-notch ensemble and hands them a virtually air-tight script about an up-and-coming political analyst (Ryan Gosling) who finds himself backed into corners as he races to put out fires for his boss (Clooney), a Democratic governor with his eye on his party’s presidential nomination.

Everybody in the cast – from Philip Seymour Hoffman to Paul Giamatti – gets a chance to step up to the plate. And everybody rewards Clooney with a home run shot into the upper-deck bleachers. (Apologies for the multiple baseball analogies. They must be left over from all of my “Moneyball” raves.)

“Ides” has been performing well with critics. Currently, it has an 83% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, and will be collecting reviews all week.

The next challenge will be box office, which can make or creak a campaign. Just ask “50/50.”

In the meantime, Yahoo Movies has a two-minute, behind-the-scenes clip on “Ides” that they’ve posted to their site in preparation for this Friday’s release. See it HERE. And we also have a separate featurette with some insight from Clooney and his co-screenwriter Grant Heslov. We’ll have plenty more coverage on “Ides” as we approach the film’s Friday release.

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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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