January 06, 2015
        What the PGA nominations mean for the Best Picture race                The films that will sadly be shut out on Oscar nomination morning                Producers Guild of America Announces Nominees                Art Directors Guild Announces Nominees                A January Oscar Predictions Update                American Cinema Editors (ACE) Announces Nominees                2015 releases to look forward to                The best films and performances of 2014                A look at the second spot in each of the main Oscar categories                The late breaking major Oscar contenders of 2014                Golden Globe post nomination predictions for December                Cinematic gifts from 2014                Spotlight on the Stars: Bradley Cooper                Which film will lead the nomination totals for Oscar this year?                A look at some potential first time Academy Award nominees this year        

Tag Archives: film

Chris Nolan sends new “Dark Knight Rises” audio to clean up Bane dialogue?

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: It was the great debate of 2012: Could you understand Bane in the “Dark Knight Rises” prologue, or did Chris Nolan need to tweak the villains inaudible dialogue to help audiences hear his dialogue?
It sounds like the latter half of the argument is winning out.
Citing an anonymous projectionist, Collider reports that a new audio mix for the prologue was sent to IMAX theaters to improve the sound of Bane’s dialogue.
“They’ve gone in and lowered the background noise of the plane and other things, thus making Bane’s dialogue clearer and more understandable,” this source says. “He asked some people after they left the movie if they could understand Bane and they all said they had no issue understanding him, and were excited for the movie.”
There are factors. Tom Hardy, who plays Bane in the film, has an accent. He also wears a mask over his mouth. Nolan had come out to defend his villain, saying audiences can figure out what’s happening through the visuals. Which is true. But we also want to hear what Bane’s saying. It’s kind of important.
So, it sounds like “Rises” will clean up its “act” before its July 20 release. Catch the latest trailer below:

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Brad Pitt: Top Money-Making Movie Star of 2011

HollywoodNews.com: Brad Pitt has been voted the Top Money-Making Star of 2011 in Quigley Publishing Company’s 80th Annual Poll of Motion Picture Exhibitors. This is Pitt’s sixth appearance in the Poll, but his first win. Exhibitors felt Pitt was responsible for more traffic to theatres than any other Hollywood star based on his performances this year in “Moneyball,” “The Tree of Life” and “Happy Feet Two.” (voice)
The Quigley Poll, conducted each year since 1932, is an annual survey of motion picture theatre owners and film buyers, which asks them to vote for the ten stars that they believe generated the most box-office revenue for their theatres during the year. It has been long regarded as one of the most reliable indicators of a Star’s real box-office draw because the selections are made by professionals whose livelihood depends on choosing the films and actors that will bring audiences to their theatres. The Quigley Poll appears annually in Quigley Publishing Company’s International Motion Picture Almanac and on our web site: www.quigleypublishing.com. Both list the results of all the Polls since Marie Dressler, Janet Gaynor and Joan Crawford took the top three places in 1932.
George Clooney placed second this year based on “The Ides of March,” where he was also the Director, Producer and Co-writer and “The Descendants.” Johnny Depp, last year’s winner, made it to #3 this year with 2011 roles in “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” and “The Rum Diary.” Depp has placed in the poll seven times as has this year’s #4, Leonardo DiCaprio, who starred in “J. Edgar.” Matt Damon, #5, had a very busy year with “Contagion,” “The Adjustment Bureau,” “Margaret” and “We Bought a Zoo.”
2009’s winner, Sandra Bullock, placed #6, which marks her fifth appearance in the Poll. She first placed in the survey in 1995. There were two first-timers this year, Bradley Cooper #7 and Ben Stiller #10. Bradley Cooper was in “The Hangover Part II” and Ben Stiller was in “Tower Heist.” Robert Downey, Jr. was #8 on the strength of “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” and Meryl Streep was #9 as ‘The Iron Lady” and is in the Top Ten for the fourth time.
Tom Cruise has not placed in the Poll since 2006 but he has been in the Top Ten 20 times since 1983, and been voted number one the most of any actor – seven times. Tom Hanks, […]

Meryl Streep receiving Golden Bear in Berlin for “Iron Lady” – AWARDS ALLEY

By Sean O’Connell
hollywoodnews.com: One Oscar category that seems impossible to predict at the moment is Best Actress, as the tide shifts left and right with each passing week. Glenn Close peaked early, and is poised for a comeback. Meryl Streep and Michelle Williams look like frontrunners, but contenders like Charlize Theron and Tilda Swinton could give them a run for their money.
Today’s news helps Streep’s ongoing campaign on behalf of “The Iron Lady.” The actress will receive the Golden Bear, a lifetime achievement award presented at the 62nd Annual Berlin International Film Festival, organizers revealed today.
“We are delighted to be able to award the Honorary Golden Bear to such a terrific artist and world star. Meryl Streep is a brilliant, versatile performer who moves with ease between dramatic and comedic roles,” said Dieter Kosslick, director of the film festival.
Streep will receive her honor at a ceremony in Berlin on Feb. 14, which will be followed by a “Iron Lady” screening. This year’s Berlin fest runs Feb. 9-19.
Awards Alley brings you the best Oscar coverage. Click below to read our exclusive interviews with:
– Harvey Weinstein
– The cast of “The Artist.”
– Kenneth Branagh for “My Week With Marilyn.”
– Bennett Miller talks “Moneyball.”
– Sir Ben Kingsley and Chloe Grace Moretz for “Hugo.”
– Tilda Swinton for “We Need to Talk About Kevin.”
– David Fincher, Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara on “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.”
– Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer for “The Help.”
– Tate Taylor for “The Help.”
– Gavin O’Connor for “Warrior.”
– Gary Oldman and Colin Firth for “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.”
– Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody for “Young Adult.”
– Steve McQueen for “Shame.”
– Glenn Close for “Albert Nobbs.”
– Seth Rogen and Will Reiser for “50/50.”
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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James Bond producers launch revamped Web site 007.com

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: James Bond turns 50 this year, and producers are kicking the celebration off with a new Web site that helps promote “James Bond 23” … better known as “Skyfall.”
This film, currently in production with Sam Mendes behind the camera, marks Daniel Craig’s third stint in 007’s tuxedo. And in preparation for “Skyfall,” producer Michael G. Wilson has recorded an introduction on the revamped site 007.com, which comes with a countdown clock to the next Bond adventure. Wilson encourages fans to check back often throughout the year for up-to-the-minute Bond updates on “Skyfall” and the series, in general.
In the meantime, ComingSoon caught a quote from “Skyfall” co-star Ralph Fiennes, who tells the Sunday Mail that he plays “a government agent” in the new picture … but he couldn’t elaborate on any more than that.
Here’s Wilson’s video. But if you are a Bond fan, bookmark 007.com and have fun!

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Kenneth Branagh PHOTOS: 2011 Hollywood International Star of the Year

Hollywoodnews.com: A lot is being made this awards season of George Clooney’s versatility in front of and behind the camera, as the “Ides of March” director finds himself in the Oscar race for his performance as a bewildered father in Alexander Payne’s “The Descendants.”
And it’s true that Clooney is enjoying a productive 2011. But Kenneth Branagh has performed a similar feat this year. Click here to read interview with Kenneth
Consider this. Earlier this year, Branagh kicked off the Summer 2011 season with his Shakespeare-by-way-of-Marvel-comics blockbuster, “Thor.” The smash hit earned a whopping $449 million at the worldwide box office, establishing Chris Hemsworth as a bankable star while also setting the stage for “Captain America” and, later, Joss Whedon’s “The Avengers.” It was a coup for Branagh, but he wasn’t finished yet.
It’s Branagh’s masterful turn as Sir Laurence Olivier in Simon Curtis’ charming “My Week With Marilyn” that has the respected actor in the Oscar race for a Best Supporting Actor trophy. By playing his hero, Branagh lends stability and professionalism to a unique behind-the-scenes drama. For these triumphs, we’re please to recognize Kenneth Branagh as our 2011 Hollywood International Star of the Year:

Photos by PRPhotos and The Weinstein Company

Click here to read our exclusive interview with Branagh on behalf of “My Week With Marilyn”

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Photo courtesy of PRPhotos.com.

Oscar voters “profoundly confused” by new ballots

By Sean O’Connell
hollywoodnews.com: When the Academy shifted its rules regarding the Best Picture race – making it a more fluid process while eliminating the minimum number of films that might make it into the competition – those tracking the annual Oscar marathon predicted confusion once the ballots were in voters’ hands.
As such, THR Oscarologist Scott Feinberg now says that Academy members he’s hearing from are “profoundly confused by the new voting system,” which asks them to pick only five films for Best Picture, even though there could end up being as many as 10 (or as few as five) nominated.
“The reason that voters are only being asked to name five films instead of 10 is that the current ‘preferential’ voting system rewards films that appear highly on the most ballots, not films that merely appear somewhere on the most ballots,” Feinberg explains in his piece. “In other words, it seeks to identify films that many people love, not that most people like.”
This, as I’ve always feared, will cost a film that voters might like, but not enough to put it high on their ballot. A film will have to be universally supported to get into the as-yet-undetermined number of Best Picture slots.
“On most ballots, the number one movie carries the real weight, although second and third choices could well come into play. Fourth and fifth choices will play a much more minimal role in the selection process,” fellow THR reporter Gregg Kilday wrote.
Hopefully there won’t be a deserving film sitting on the outside of the Oscar race looking in. Will this new system introduce the “twist” the Academy desires, or cost a film that many like but might not love as strongly as they need to in order to get it into the competition?
Awards Alley brings you the best Oscar coverage. Click below to read our exclusive interviews with:
– Harvey Weinstein
– The cast of “The Artist.”
– Kenneth Branagh for “My Week With Marilyn.”
– Sir Ben Kingsley and Chloe Grace Moretz for “Hugo.”
– Tilda Swinton for “We Need to Talk About Kevin.”
– David Fincher, Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara on “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.”
– Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer for “The Help.”
– Tate Taylor for “The Help.”
– Gavin O’Connor for “Warrior.”
– Gary Oldman and Colin Firth for “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.”
– Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody for “Young Adult.”
– Steve McQueen […]

The Best of the Best Movies of the Year!

By Scott Mendelson
HollywoodNews.com: This time, it’s the best of the best. Of course ‘best’ is a subjective term, so you might want to consider these my ‘favorites’. Despite what everyone likes to whine about at the end of every year, 2011 was in fact one of the better years in a good long time. Maybe it was the effects of the 2007 WGA strike wearing off, maybe it was just dumb luck, but on the whole, movies, especially mainstream movies, were pretty on-spot more often than they weren’t. But just as important, most of the year-end Oscar bait was actually quite good, so this is a year where I don’t have to half-heartedly apologize for having a list filled with movies nobody saw and mainstream pictures that no one admits to liking. Even if it took 1/3 of the year to really get cooking, 2011 was an uncommonly solid year for all forms of cinematic entertainment. And of course, there are at least a few films that might have made the cut if they hadn’t come out so close to the end of the year (mainly A Separation, Shame, and Pariah). But they merely become contenders for the 2012 Black Book award (IE – great films that you saw too late to include in your best-of list, named after Paul Verhoeven’s fantastic 2006 World War II thriller that I saw in mid-2007). And thus, without further ado, here are the very ‘best’ films of 2011. As always, the list will be alphabetical order, with a final paragraph at the end for my very favorite film.
50/50
This was a complete and total surprise, one that I wish I had seen earlier in its release so that I might have been able to give it the proper attention. Unfairly written off as a Judd Apatow-wannabe comedy purely due the appearance of Seth Rogen, this fantastic comedic drama from director Jonathan Levine and writer Will Reiser is a loosely non-fiction telling of Reiser’s diagnosis with cancer and how it affected him and those around him. I can’t speak to the medical accuracy of every onscreen moment, but the film feels bitterly real and it is never less than emotionally honest. Joseph Gordon Levitt reaffirms that he is one of the better actors of his generation, and he is surrounded by a wonderful […]

Michelle Williams PHOTOS: 2011 Hollywood Actress of the Year

HollywoodNews.com: Our selected actress to be our “2011 Hollywood Actress of the Year” is Michelle Williams. Her performances have established her as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after and respected actors earning her two Academy Award® nominations. Click here to see photos of Kenneth Branagh

Photos by PRPhotos and The Weinstein Company
In 2011, Williams took on the iconic Marilyn Monroe in MY WEEK WITH MARILYN opposite Kenneth Branagh and Judi Dench. The film was released by The Weinstein Company on November 4, 2011. In addition, she stars opposite Seth Rogan in Sarah Polley’s TAKE THIS WALTZ, which made its world premiere at the 2011 Toronto Film Festival.
Below video of Michelle Williams receiving her “Hollywood Actress Award” last October, 2011, at the Hollywood Film Awards Gala Ceremony at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills.

Visit our YouTube page to see videos of this year’s HOLLYWOOD AWARDS GALA winners!
Awards Alley brings you the best Oscar coverage. Click below to read our exclusive interviews with:
– Harvey Weinstein
– The cast of “The Artist.”
– Kenneth Branagh for “My Week With Marilyn.”
– Sir Ben Kingsley and Chloe Grace Moretz for “Hugo.”
– Tilda Swinton for “We Need to Talk About Kevin.”
– David Fincher, Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara on “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.”
– Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer for “The Help.”
– Tate Taylor for “The Help.”
– Gavin O’Connor for “Warrior.”
– Gary Oldman and Colin Firth for “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.”
– Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt, Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody for “Young Adult.”
– Steve McQueen for “Shame.”
– Glenn Close for “Albert Nobbs.”
– Seth Rogen and Will Reiser for “50/50.”
For complete Oscar and Film Festival coverage, visit our Awards Alley for the latest news items, reviews and interviews all season long.
Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
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2011: The Year’s Worst Movies

By Scott Mendelson
HollywoodNews.com: This time, it’s time to document the worst of the worst in cinema for the 2011 movie year. Of course, while most critics make a point to try to seek out the allegedly best in cinema in any given year, not quite as much effort is made to track down every would-be stinker. As such, I’ve tried to highlight truly terrible films that either ‘damn well should have been good’ or represent something greater than itself via its artistic failure. Anyway, without further pretentious ado, here are the nine worst films in alphabetical order, followed by the absolute worst picture in 2011.
The Art of Getting By
This film so slavishly followed that indie formula I’m always whining about (‘brooding young man solves his problems/comes of age with help of a selfless hottie’) to such a degree that with just a bit of tweaking, it could have been a Z.A.Z.-style parody. Emma Roberts again plays the endlessly helpful and forgiving prize to be won for the second time in under a year, after the comparably superior It’s Kind of a Funny Story (that one at least had strong dramatic work from Zach Galifianakis and Viola Davis). All of the cliches are firmly in place, the story has nothing of importance to say, and an extended cameo by Michael Angarano elicits guffaws in the same manner as Clive Owen showing up as ‘not-James Bond’ in The Pink Panter 2, albeit unintentional in this case. In short, The Art of Getting By (and, natch, the equally revolting though lower-profile Waiting For Forever) is the kind of film that makes independent cinema look bad.
Cowboys and Aliens
And now we have a film that makes big-budget blockbuster film making look terrible too. In a year when production budgets generally drifted downward to reflect slightly lowered ticket sales, Cowboys and Aliens spent $160 million to look about as impressive as an Asylum Entertainment picture. This seemingly amusing idea, a hybrid of alien-invasion drama and a classical western, instead becomes a textbook case of how everything can go wrong with a would-be franchise starter. Daniel Craig has not a drop of charisma or sympathy, proving yet again that the very elements that make him an interesting 007 (his cold, brutish, steely persona) kill his worth as a traditional heroic leading man. Olivia Wilde has nothing interesting to […]

“Dark Knight Rises” scene description pairs Catwoman with Bane?

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Calling today a slow news day is an understatement of an understatement. And yet, when anything related to Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises” hits the Web, we know it’s going to generate serious conversation with the devoted Nolan-ites.
Take this, for example. Anne Hathaway has been overshadowed a bit by all of this Tom Hardy talk, particularly because the recent “Rises” prologue focused heavily on Hardy’s Bane.
But in an interview with the L.A. Times, Hathaway tipped a little of Catwoman’s dialogue, and the paper of record described a scene that could be important. Steer clear if you want to avoid spoilers!!:
Gotham City is a war zone. A ruthless madman named Bane has ripped away any sense of security and the citizens, haggard and clutching suitcases with refugee anxiety, sit behind barbed wire waiting to see what will blow up next. A hooded prisoner is dragged in – it’s Bruce Wayne, one of Gotham’s most famous faces – but the eyes of the crowd go instead to the woman in black standing at the top of the staircase.
“Sorry to spoil things, boys, but Bane needs these guys himself,” says sultry Selina Kyle, played here by actress Anne Hathaway, navigating the steps with stiletto heels that, on closer inspection, turn out to have serrated edges capable of leaving nasty claw marks in a fight. She also wears high-tech goggles that, when not in use, flip up and resemble feline ears.
Does this imply that Catwoman, at least temporarily, works for Bane? There have been images of Hardy standing atop one of Batman’s military-grade cruisers. And, of course, that video of Catwoman piloting Batman’s motorcycle. Do they get into his “wonderful toys,” as the Joker might have said? We’re closer to finding out, but “Rises” still doesn’t hit until July. Can you wait? I the meantime, give the article a read. It’s well worth your time.
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