"Can You Ever Forgive Me?" deliciously pairs Richard E. Grant with Melissa McCarthy                "22 July" sees Paul Greengrass effectively depict another tragic historical event                Timothée Chalamet and Rachel Weisz to be Honored at Hollywood Film Awards                Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet are gunning for awards with "Beautiful Boy"                "Bad Times At The El Royale" is overstuffed yet pulpy fun from Drew Goddard                87 films will contend for Best Foreign Language Feature this year                "First Man" is another stunning achievement for Damien Chazelle and Ryan Gosling                Updated Academy Award predictions for early October                Bradley Cooper makes a stunning directorial debut with the Oscar frontrunner "A Star Is Born"                Trailer for 'Vice' reveals Adam McKay's biopic of Dick Cheney                Taking a look at potential Best Original Screenplay contenders                Nicole Kidman to Receive Hollywood Film Award                “First Man” and “A Star Is Born”: Films to see in October                Taking a look at potential Best Adapted Screenplay contenders                Could we be seeing a rematch of Damien Chazelle vs Barry Jenkins this year?        

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.

For complete Oscar and Film Festival coverage, visit our Awards Alley for the latest news items, reviews and interviews all season long.

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