July 24, 2016
        Hollywood Contenders: Looking at potential Best Actress contenders                "Star Trek Beyond" is a rare success for the 2016 summer movie season                The 2016 New York Film Festival will open with Ava Duvernay's documentary "The 13th"                Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone make us swoon as "La La Land" drops a luminous Teaser Trailer                "Loving" announces itself as an awards player with a great Trailer                Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for July                Woody Allen has another crowd pleaser on his hands with "Cafe Society"                Hollywood Contenders: Looking at potential Best Actor contenders                Kristen Stewart shines in the sci-fi love story "Equals"                'Ghostbusters' is an excellent re-invention of the classic franchise                Hollywood Contenders: Looking at potential Best Director contenders                "Captain Fantastic" is one of the year's most pleasant surprises                This week brings an adorable bit of animation in "The Secret Life of Pets"                Aaron Eckhart has plum supporting roles in "Bleed for This" and "Sully"                "Cafe Society", "Captain Fantastic", and "Ghostbusters": Films to see in July        

Tag Archives: films

Will “Star Wars” Awaken a Force within the Sound Editing race?

What does a lightsaber sound like? Or a storm on Mars? Or Q’s latest gadget? Well we don’t know. Rather, films’ sound effects editors use their ingenuity to create these artificial sounds, to be integrated into a film’s soundtrack. The Academy Award for Best Sound Editing rewards the supervising sound editors who are responsible for this important craft.
War films and action films frequently score here, and science-fiction/fantasy is another favorite. Animated films also do disproportionately well in this category, which is not surprising given that all non-dialogue, non-music sounds need to be created. Best Picture nominees by no means dominate this category, but films that tank usually have considerable difficulty making the final five.
“The Martian” featured extraordinary sounds during crashes and explosions such that viewers feel they are on Mars/in space. Oliver Tarney was nominated two years ago for another October release –“Captain Phillips.” He seems a good bet for a second nod.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” will undoubtedly feature a feast of sound effects. Critical response is obviously unknown but there’s no doubt this will be a massive hit. Matthew Wood is a two-time nominee (“There Will Be Blood,” “Wall-E”) who would seem likely to return if the film is even of respectable quality.
Also coming out soon is “Spectre,” the latest James Bond title. Following up the massive critical and commercial success that was “Skyfall,” which won this category three years ago, will be challenging. Karen Baker Landers and Per Hallberg will be seeking another nod. Whether they get it depends, in my view, on the quality of the film.
Earlier this year, “Jurassic World” lit the box office on fire. The franchise’s first film won this category twenty-two years ago. The dino sounds are back, and could end up in play if the film manages to score outside the Visual Effects category. Al Nelson is seeking a first nomination while Gwendolyn Yates Whittle is seeking her third, having previously been nominated for “Avatar” and “TRON: Legacy.”
“Mad Max: Fury Road” may not have lit the box office on fire, but it sure excited critics. It will likely be revitalized with end-of-year critics’ citations. The film’s visual landscape has been justly praised, but listening to it also reveals just what an exceptional soundtrack it has, largely courtesy of extraordinary sound effects. Wayne Pashley, Scott Hecker and Mark Mangini have four nominations between them and might well end up with an invitation […]

Hollywood Film Awards billed as the launch of awards season

dick clark productions announced today that two-time Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro will be honored with the “Hollywood Career Achievement Award.” The awards ceremony will take place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, on November 1, 2015. The Hollywood Film Awards, the official launch of the awards season®, has recognized excellence in the art of cinema and filmmaking for 18 years, honoring some of the world’s biggest stars. Honorees have gone on to garner many Oscar nominations and wins.
“The Hollywood Film Awards is an incredible brand, previewing some of the biggest movies and stars of the year, while launching the award season,” said Allen Shapiro, CEO of dick clark productions. “We are honored to have Robert De Niro as this year’s recipient of the Hollywood Career Achievement Award.”

Robert De Niro is currently starring in Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Intern” and will appear next in 20th Century Fox’s “Joy,” coming out December 25, 2015.
Past honorees of the “Hollywood Career Achievement Award” include Glenn Close, Harrison Ford, Richard Gere, Dustin Hoffman, Michael Keaton and Robin Williams among others.
ABOUT ROBERT DE NIRO
Robert De Niro launched his prolific motion picture career in Brian De Palma’s “The Wedding Party” in 1969. By 1974 he had won the New York Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor in recognition of his critically acclaimed performance in “Bang the Drum Slowly” and from the National Society of Film Critic for Martin Scorsese’s “Mean Streets.” In 1974 De Niro won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of the young Vito Corleone in “The Godfather, Part II.”
In 1980, he won his second Oscar, as Best Actor, for his extraordinary portrayal of Jake La Motta in Scorsese’s “Raging Bull.” De Niro has earned Academy Award nominations for his work in five additional films: as Travis Bickle in Scorsese’s acclaimed “Taxi Driver;” as a Vietnam vet in Michael Cimino’s “The Deer Hunter;” as a catatonic patient brought to life in Penny Marshall’s “Awakenings;” in 1992 as Max Cady, an ex-con looking for revenge, in Scorsese’s remake of the 1962 classic “Cape Fear;” and as a father to a bi-polar son in David O. Russell’s “Silver Linings Playbook.”
In 2009, De Niro received the coveted Kennedy Center Honor for his distinguished acting. He also received the Hollywood Actor Award from the Hollywood Film Festival, which he won again in 2012, and the Stanley Kubrick […]

Gerard Kennedy Joins the HollywoodNews.com Team

“There has been an awakening. Have you felt it?”
Yes, Oscar season has once again awoken and its force is powerful. (Oh, you thought I may have been referencing something else…)
The next several months will result in many of the leading contenders for the 88th Annual Academy Awards hitting screens across North America. We have seen many of them already at festivals. Stories of the actors and directors in contention will not be difficult to find. Indeed, they are already popping up on the covers of magazines.

Stories of the below-the-line or “crafts” artists whose work also immeasurably improves our movies are much rarer.
But are these individuals ever artists. Cinematographers whose camera work makes our films, well “movies.” Production designers and set decorators who create the world that characters inhabit. Costume designers and makeup artists who fashion our characters’ appearances. Editors who set the pace. Musicians whose compositions can transform mood and indeed theme. Sound mixers and editors whose audio work turns a movie into something resembling a “real world,” even one that is fantastical. And visual effects artists who create both spectacle and story.
Over the next ten weeks, we will seek to analyze each of the ten “crafts” categories honored by the Academy: Cinematography, Costume Design, Film Editing, Makeup & Hairstyling, Music – Original Score, Music – Original Song, Production Design, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Visual Effects. In doing so, we will explain features of the individual races, such as their different important precursors (they all have different guilds, after all). The idiosyncrasies of the various branches will also be explored, from the independence of the costume designers to the bellwether-like film editors to the insular musicians to the creative makeup artists and hairstylists.
But perhaps most importantly, we will be talking about the artists who are frequently ignored elsewhere in the mainstream press. Many of them will be seeking an overdue first nomination. Others will be seeking an overdue first win. Still others will be veterans with several statuettes on their mantleplace. And many will have found a break that will be catapulting them into the race and, just possibly, their professions’ elites. All will have a unique career trajectory that has brought them to the Oscar race. No matter how they have arrived at where they are and regardless of where we may be going, it is our goal to shine a light on each individual journey.
By the […]

Sandra Bullock looks like a contender in the Trailer for “Our Brand is Crisis”

Yesterday, a Trailer dropped for Our Brand is Crisis, the political drama/satire hybrid that I’ve been predicting for Oscar attention all year. With it, we got our first real look at a film that could certainly liven up the impending awards season. David Gordon Green’s movie is getting a premiere shortly at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival, and assuming reviews are strong, this will quickly become more than just a Sandra Bullock vehicle, but a legitimate Academy Award contender as well. We’ll know soon enough, but this very solid Trailer is a hint that this is something to be excited about, especially if you’re looking for another contender to enter the race.
Here’s a quick refresher on the movie. Basically, it’s based on the documentary of the same name (Our Brand Is Crisis, of course), which focused on the use of American political campaign strategies in South American elections. Specifically, it was a Bolivian politician named Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada hiring James Carville’s political consulting firm to help him win the 2002 Bolivian presidential election. Carville works to use American political campaign strategies, leading to a different outcome than might otherwise have been. For the film, Bullock will play ‘Calamity’ Jane Bodine, basically a stand in for Carville, I believe, though Billy Bob Thornton as a rival consultant with a bald head makes me wonder if he’s actually the Carville stand in. Regardless, aside from Bullock and Thornton, also in the cast are Ann Dowd, Zoe Kazan, Anthony Mackie, Scoot McNairy, and more. Green directs, as mentioned before, with the script penned by Peter Straughan. The potential for something special is certainly there, it seems.
I’d always considered this a player more so than most, and the Trailer that you’ll be seeing below seems to indicate that I might be on to something. Not only does it look to showcase Bullock in a great leading role, it appears to be Green’s largest scale filmmaking to date. It’s easy to look at Our Brand is Crisis and think that it’s a cousin to Ben Affleck’s Argo, which also was produced by George Clooney and Grant Heslov. I’m sure all involved here would be thrilled if this one came even close to what that one did, but there’s certainly a chance.
If there’s one thing the Trailer for this movie really showed us, it’s that we’ve got a showcase for Bullock’s talents on our hands. […]

Zoolander 2: Starring Ben Stiller, Olivia Munn, Will Ferrell, Penelope Cruz, Kim Kardashian West. New trailer

Zoolander 2 is coming. Derek and Hansel are modeling again when an opposing company attempts to take them out from the business.
Starring Ben Stiller, Olivia Munn, Will Ferrell, Penelope Cruz, Kim Kardashian West.

“Freeheld,” starring Julianne Moore enters the Oscar race with a touching Trailer

Issue driven films with a ton of heart usually find their way into the awards season one way or another. Hopefully, it’s because they’re good movies and legitimately important, either for the culture or the world in general. Sometimes though, it’s just due to how shamelessly manipulative they can be on an emotional level. Hopefully, one new entry into the former category will be Freeheld, which is hitting the awards season at a very timely moment in history. A Trailer hit last week (which you can see below) and it appears to be hitting all of the right notes in order to appeal to Oscar in a potentially significant way come its October theatrical release.
The film is about same sex marriage and centers on two women fighting for the benefits that straight couples take for granted. Laurel Hester (Julianne Moore) is a Lieutenant in the New Jersey police force who encounters a struggle when she attempts to pass on her pension to her partner after developing terminal cancer. Her partner is a woman named Stacie Andree (Ellen Page) and is only her domestic partner (yes, it’s a period piece from less than a decade ago), so she’s denied. Thus begins a level fight that spurred a documentary on the subject. Peter Sollett directs, while Ron Nyswaner wrote the screenplay. In addition to Moore and Page, the cast includes Steve Carell, Josh Charles, Luke Grimes, Michael Shannon, and more. It’s prestige through and through.
Considering the leaps and bounds that we’ve taken as a society in terms of LGBT rights, this is an interesting look back at a time when we as a nation weren’t fully formed on the issue. Assuming Sollett and Nyswaner have nailed the material, there’s no reason to think that this won’t be an emotional an thought provoking cinematic experience. If that’s the case and it’s not just overt manipulation in the pursuit of awards, we very well might see this become a pretty notable contender with Oscar and all along the precursor season. The ingredients are most certainly all there, to say the least.
Assuming we have a worthy player on our hands, there are plenty of possibilities for the Academy to latch on to here in terms of awards. Obviously there’s Best Picture, along with Best Director (for Sollett), Best Actress (either Moore or Page, likely the former), Best Supporting Actor (Carell or Shannon), Best Supporting Actress […]

“Creed”: An under the radar Oscar contender?

Ladies and gentlemen, I know it sounds silly, but a sequel/spinoff from Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky films might be in awards contention this year. Yes, the upcoming movie Creed is another installment in the franchise centered around fighter Rocky Balboa, but this one takes a U-turn. Instead of being about Stallone’s pugilist, it’s about former rival turned friend Apollo Creed’s son. Rocky is more the trainer than the protagonist, essentially re-launching this series with a grittier and younger bent to it. A Trailer hit last week and really impressed me (which you’ll see below), leading me to wonder if the Academy might once again be interested in this franchise?
For those who don’t know, the first Rocky with a big time Oscar contender, nominated for ten Academy Awards and winning three (Best Picture, Best Director for John G. Avildsen, and Best Film Editing). Stallone himself was cited two times, for Best Actor as well as Best Original Screenplay. The franchise became a bit sillier each time out, as Stallone stepped behind the camera (except for Rocky V, which had Avildsen direct again) and made his hero a superhero, essentially negating the interest voters had in it. The most recent sequel, entitled Rocky Balboa, brought a measure of respect back to the series, so now Creed hopes to capitalize on that.
This film centers around Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan, best known for Fruitvale Station), the son of former champion Apollo Creed. Fans of the franchise know that Apollo has passed on, so it’s fellow former champ Rocky Balboa who steps in as a trainer to help Adonis follow in his father’s footsteps. Essentially, this looks to be more of the first Rocky than any other in the franchise so far, while also functioning as basically a reboot of sorts. Ryan Coogler (of Fruitvale Station fame as well) co-writes with Aaron Covington and directs, while aside from Jordan and Stallone, the cast includes Graham McTavish, Phylicia Rashad, and Tessa Thompson. Taking the series back to its roots might be just what the doctor ordered.
The main reason to be excited for this one is seeing Coogler and Jordan work together again. They both broke through in a big way with Fruitvale Station, a film that was majorly snubbed by the Academy. This time around, they’re getting to tell a similarly gritty (if fictional this time out) story, just couched around an established franchise. Especially if […]

“Magic Mike XXL” is one of the most purely entertaining films of the summer

There are few franchises with less likely of a crossover appeal than Magic Mike. The first one shocked many by engaging both critics and audiences alike, myself included. Today, the sequel Magic Mike XXL opens, and go figure, it’s a great film as well. Magic Mike took the idea of a story about male strippers and filtered it through the distinctive lens of filmmaker Steven Soderbergh, opting to make it as much or more about money and economic hardship/the quest for prosperity than about the dancing. Magic Mike XXL is almost the exact counterpoint to that, going for a party feel and celebrating the dancing/lifestyle in the process. It shouldn’t work, but Channing Tatum and company really make it soar.
Though very loose on plot, this one does pick up three years after Magic Mike ended. The title character Mike is now out of the game, but single again. His former co-workers get a reunion of sorts going with him and before long he’s on a road trip with Big Dick Richie (Joe Manganiello), Ken (Matt Bomer), Tarzan (Kevin Nash), Tito (Adam Rodriguez), and Tobias (Gabriel Iglesias). They’re headed to a stripping convention in Myrtle Beach, dancing and partying along the way. Aside from Tatum in the title role, the cast also includes Amber Heard, Jada Pinkett Smith, Donald Glover, Andie MacDowell, Michael Strahan, and others. Soderbergh no longer directs, but he’s the DP and editor for longtime assistant Gregory Jacobs, who’s at the helm here. Producer and scribe Reid Carolin again provides the script, which is loose and fun in all the right ways.
While the stripping was kind of a bait and switch last time around, it’s very much at the forefront of things here, which should make Magic Mike XXL shallow, but instead just makes it sex positive and a somewhat surprisingly innocent good time. How does that work? Well, it celebrates female desire and pleasure, but keeps almost all the hanky panky off screen, so it’s your imagination that fills in the blank. It’s an unusually subtle choice for a sequel that’s otherwise all about being bigger in every way, shape, or form that it can be. Instead of being a dark and almost cautionary tale, this one is a road trip/party flick that’s about the bonds of friendship, doing what you love, and making that one last right count.
The thing that works best here, though pretty much […]

KUNG FU PANDA 3 First Trailer

The star-studded cast returns to this franchise with Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Jackie Chan, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, and David Cross; joined by newcomers Bryan Cranston, Rebel Wilson, and J.K. Simmons.
KUNG FU PANDA 3 hits theaters everywhere on JANUARY 29, 2016!
Check out the first trailer and get ready for the hilarious adventure to continue in 2016!

In 2016, one of the most successful animated franchises in the world returns with its biggest comedy adventure yet, KUNG FU PANDA 3. When Po’s long-lost panda father suddenly reappears, the reunited duo travels to a secret panda paradise to meet scores of hilarious new panda characters. But when the supernatural villain Kai begins to sweep across China defeating all the kung fu masters, Po must do the impossible, learn to train a village full of his fun-loving, clumsy brethren to become the ultimate band of Kung Fu Pandas!
KUNG FU PANDA 3 Official Socials
Facebook: facebook.com/kungfupanda
Twitter: twitter.com/dwanimation
Instagram: instagram.com/dreamworksanimation
Tumblr: dreamworksanimation.tumblr.com
Snapchat: dwanimation
Hashtag: #kungfupanda

SPY starring Melissa McCarthy and Jason Statham

20th Century Fox is excited to announce that their hilarious new comedy, SPY, is currently Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. In honor of opening day, 20th Century Fox is debuting a new mondo poster and some fun gifs. Download all the new images below and be sure to check out SPY in theaters now!
Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) is an unassuming, deskbound CIA analyst, and the unsung hero behind the Agency’s most dangerous missions. But when her partner (Jude Law) falls off the grid and another top agent (Jason Statham) is compromised, she volunteers to go deep undercover to infiltrate the world of a deadly arms dealer, and prevent a global disaster.
SPY Official Socials
SITE: http://spy-themovie.com/
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/SpyMovie
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/SpyTheMovie
GOOGLE+: plus.google.com/+SpyMovie/
TUMBLR: http://spymovie.tumblr.com
OFFICIAL HASHTAG: #SpyMovie

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