January 03, 2015
        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                A Mid-December Oscar Predictions Update                Oscars: 9 Foreign Language Films Advance in Oscar® Race                Audiences are missing out on a funny film in Seth Rogen's "The Interview"                Spotlight on the Stars: Christian Bale        

Tag Archives: The Avengers

Will Comic Con ever launch a Best Picture winner?

Each and every year, it seems like the annual San Diego Comic Con becomes more of a launching pad for future summer blockbusters. Now sure, they also still have comic books and television shows and everything in between (including talks by Kevin Smith), but these days most outlets go to cover the film studio panels, getting early looks at upcoming superhero flicks and the like. Something you rarely see though is prestige pictures getting put forward. Could that change one day though? Could we one day see Comic Con become a place where Oscar hopefuls go to tease voters early? I’m not sure we ever will in that overt way, but I think we’re going to see at the very least nominees come from the Con. With the convention coming to a close over the weekend, this sort of thing has been on my mind a bit.
What do I mean when I say that we’ll at least see nominees from the Con? Take for example how Warner Brothers brought out Christopher Nolan during their panel to talk about Interstellar, their upcoming science fiction epic. Hot on the heels of Gravity likely being the runner up in Best Picture at the most recent Academy Awards, there’s certainly the possibility that this could contend for a win in the top category. Sci-fi seems to be the most likely correlation here, but I don’t think it’s the only one to be found. Perhaps going forward war films can try to take this route as well?
While a superhero flick is unlikely to ever crack the lineup at this point (if The Avengers or The Dark Knight couldn’t do it, it’ll be a while before a new type of superhero movie comes out and can), something based off of a pre-existing property certainly could. If The Hobbit franchise from Peter Jackson had been better received, that’s one example for sure. Also, imagine if Comic Con had been as big as it is now back when David Fincher’s Fight Club had come out? It’s not hard to see that having a big Hall H presentation and wowing the crowd. There’s clearly types of films that can appeal to both a Hall H audience member and an Oscar voter…
Basically, film festivals currently serve the same purpose for prestige fare as Comic Con does for blockbusters. An exclusive group of audience members and journalists see something early (a […]

Do we really have a Summer Movie Season anymore?

Maybe I’m just nuts, but it’s slowly beginning to seem to me like there isn’t really a summer movie season anymore, or at the very least no longer one that resembles what there used to be. I’m sure I’m hardly the first person over the last few years to say this, or even the last year (or even this month, I’m sure), but it appears like a simple fact of the matter. What used to be an important designation that would get audiences excited and symbolize a certain type of studio output has now become antiquated. Blockbusters happen year round, counter programming happens year round, and only really the awards bait type film still has a designated season.
This all began with the summer movie season being extended, slowly but sure. I’ll give some examples below, but it showed studios that it was possible to play popcorn entertainment throughout all 12 months. Even March has gotten in on the action, a time usually reserved as the end of the movie dumping season with January and February. Don’t look now, but February is next in line for this treatment too. It really is a new age at hand.
To me, Godzilla this year signified the end. A perfect July type event movie, it hit theaters in May. That was a real death knell in my eyes, along with The Amazing Spider-Man 2 also avoiding the true summer months. It’s been happening for years now, but it really came to the forefront for me now. It began with the surprising success of 300 back when that was a March release, continued for years slowly with other films testing the waters, and announced itself in a major way when The Avengers opened in the first week of May a few years ago. That was the terminal diagnosis, if you will. Godzilla was just the flatline.
I’m not saying that this is a bad thing. A fun movie or a good movie is just as top notch whenever it comes out, so the aforementioned Godzilla for example didn’t suffer one bit. Nor did The Avengers, and nor will most future releases. Aside from Oscar bait like I said before, almost every other type of movie (give or take overtly Christmas fare, but even then it’s not a hard and fast rule) can now open whenever it feels like and do comparable business. The model has just […]

Marvel’s GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY trailer

From Marvel, the studio that brought you the global blockbuster franchises of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Avengers, comes a new team—the Guardians of the Galaxy.
An action-packed, epic space adventure, Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits—Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer.
But when Quill discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand—with the galaxy’s fate in the balance.

Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy,” which first appeared in comic books in Marvel Super-Heroes, Issue #18 (Jan. 1969), stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, featuring Vin Diesel as Groot, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Djimon Hounsou, with John C. Reilly, Glenn Close as Nova Prime Rael and Benicio Del Toro as The Collector.
James Gunn is the director of the film with Kevin Feige, p.g.a., producing. Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Jeremy Latcham, Alan Fine and Stan Lee serve as executive producers. Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” is written by James Gunn and Nicole Perlman and releases in U.S. theaters on August 1, 2014.

Will a Superhero movie ever make the Best Picture lineup?

HOLLYWOOD NEWS®: With The Amazing Spider-Man 2 hitting theaters today, the superhero genre is on my mind. Like with horror films and more often than not science fiction (though Gravity put a nice little dent in that last time around), movies about superheroes or comic book adaptations are basically ignored by the Academy when it comes to the Best Picture race. We all know that Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight came the closest, and once upon a time Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 had a few fans clamoring for consideration, but it just doesn’t seem to happen. With Nolan’s franchise done now and Marc Webb taking Peter Parker in a different direction, I started to wonder if a film of this sort will ever crack the lineup…
In short, no, I don’t think one ever will. There were a few opportunities in the past, but the three instances I’m going to discuss below were the realistic chances. Now, I’d bet against one making it, though I’d love to be wrong. The facts and history just don’t support me having any optimism about it, at least for the foreseeable future.
The Dark Knight definitely came the closest. It was one of the highest grossing movies ever, captured the zeitgeist at the time in a major way, and had the added sympathy of Heath Ledger’s untimely passing. They also happened to really like the film, giving it eight nominations and two wins (Best Supporting Actor for Ledger and Best Sound Editing). They did snub it in the major categories, opting not to nominate Nolan for either his direction or writing, alongside the obvious Best Picture snub. This may have led to the expanded Best Picture field, but it’ll likely go down as the closest a movie of this ilk ever got to cracking the lineup.
The other two examples are from two years ago. Both Joss Whedon’s The Avengers and Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises had situations that could have translated into those nominations, but neither were able to go the distance, or even make too much of a dent in the race on the whole. That should tell you something about how little Academy members care about breaking this glass ceiling of sorts.
With The Dark Knight Rises, the Academy had a chance to make it up to Nolan and reward him for the conclusion of his franchise. Some had speculated that they would heap awards […]

Paul Bettany will play The Vision in The Avengers: Age of Ultron

One of the biggest box office hits of all time, The Avengers exceeded almost all expectations, so all eyes are on filmmaker Joss Whedon for the upcoming sequel The Avengers: Age of Ultron. Any bit of news that comes out about the film is treated as a major deal, much like any information that leaked about Christopher Nolan’s Batman franchise a few years back. Well, today there’s an interesting bit of casting news/character reveal that’s hit the net, and it happens to surround someone who’s a veteran of Marvel’s universe at this point. Yes, not only is Paul Bettany still the voice of Tony Stark’s computer butler JARVIS, but now he’s going to be playing The Vision as well.
Bettany has yet to be seen in person in a Marvel flick to date, but this news suggests that he won’t be just a disembodied voice helping out Iron Man this time around. This is a good upgrade for the actor, who’s immensely talented but doesn’t always seem to get the right roles. This at the very least suggests a continued presence in the Marvel universe, so expect to see Bettany for the foreseeable future of this franchise.
I’m no expert on The Vision, but apparently he’s a character that’s created by the villain Ultron, though eventually The Vision goes from being an opponent of The Avengers to fighting alongside them at some point. I do know that this is a character that fans have been looking to see join the team, even at one juncture hoping that Clark Gregg’s deceased (or I guess not deceased, if that Marvel television show Agents of Shield is to be believed) would be resurrected as The Vision. Well, that’s not happening, but the character is joining the film in some capacity for sure.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron comes out on on May 1st of 2015, so we’ve got over a year to continue speculating on what this movie will wind up being like, but it certainly seems like Whedon and company are not just resting on their laurels. Stay tuned for more on this one, as it’s poised to potentially become the highest grossing film of all time if things break right for it.

Dame Shirley Bassey will make a special appearance on the Oscars®

Dame Shirley Bassey will make a special appearance on the Oscars®, show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today.
“We are thrilled to welcome the legendary Dame Shirley Bassey to our Oscar show,” said Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. “Her association with film music is world renowned and we are proud that she will be making her first Oscar appearance on our telecast.
Bassey is this year celebrating her very own “Diamond Jubilee” with a career spanning over six decades. She has recorded over 44 albums, sold over 135 million records and has sold out concert halls across the world. In June 2012, she was one of a number of esteemed artists, including Elton John, Paul McCartney and Annie Lennox, who performed at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert. In the United States, Bassey is best known for recording the theme songs for the James Bond films “Goldfinger,” “Diamonds Are Forever” and “Moonraker.”
Bassey joins a stellar list of previously announced Oscar performers including Adele, Norah Jones and Barbra Streisand; and presenters including “The Avengers” cast members Robert Downey Jr., Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner and Mark Ruffalo; returning 2011 Oscar winners Jean Dujardin, Christopher Plummer, Octavia Spencer and Meryl Streep; co-stars Mark Wahlberg and Ted; and, special guest appearances including Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Daniel Radcliffe, Channing Tatum and Charlize Theron.
Oscars for outstanding film achievements of 2012 will be presented on Oscar Sunday, February 24, at the Dolby Theatre™ at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and will be hosted by Seth MacFarlane live on the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide. For more information go to Oscar.com or download the official Oscars app.
Photo by Sky.com
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Oscars: Our 2012 Hollywood Film Awards Favorites!

This year should be no different. At the Hollywood Film Awards(r) last October 22, 2012, special honors went to Richard Gere for career achievement; Bradley Cooper for actor; Marion Cotillard for actress; Robert De Niro for supporting actor; Amy Adams for supporting actress; Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman and the cast of “Argo;” John Hawkes for breakout performance; David O. Russell for director; Dustin Hoffman for breakthrough director; Quentin Tarantino for the screenwriter award; Quvenzhané Wallis for the New Hollywood Award; Samantha Barks, Bella Heathcote, Tom Holland, John Magaro, Ezra Miller, and Kelly Reilly with the Spotlight Awards; Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner for producers; Wally Pfister for cinematographer; Dylan Tichenor for editor; Sarah Greenwood for production designer; Peter Ramsey with “Rise of the Guardians” for animation; and Jeff White with “The Avengers” for visual effects.

Celebrities and Hollywood notables who attended the Hollywood Awards included Eddy Hartenstein, Los Angeles Times Publisher and Tribune Company CEO, Chris Evans, Tom Ford, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, John Hillcoat, Helen Hunt, Melissa Leo, Ray Liotta, Tony Mendez, Christopher Nolan, Edward Norton, Eric Roth, Susan Sarandon, Amanda Seyfried, Adam Shankman, and Kerry Washington, among others.
“We are very proud to be the first stop of the awards season. In the last nine years, a total of 85 Oscar nominations and 32 Oscars were given to the honorees of the Hollywood Film Awards,” said Festival and Awards Founder, Carlos de Abreu.

The gala awards presentation was hosted by Nancy O’Dell of “Entertainment Tonight” and attendees were treated to the music of Johnny Crawford and his Orchestra.
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Kudos for Judd Apatow, John Hawkes, Quvenzhané Wallis, Wally Pfister, and “The Avengers” at Hollywood Film Awards

HollywoodNews.com: The 16th Annual Hollywood Film Awards, presented by the Los Angeles Times, is pleased to announce that writer/director/producer Judd Apatow will be given the “Hollywood Comedy Award”; actor John Hawkes will receive the “Hollywood Breakout Performance Award”; actress Quvenzhane Wallis will receive the “New Hollywood Award”; cinematographer Wally Pfister, A.S.C. will receive the “Hollywood Cinematographer Award”; and Disney and Marvel Entertainment’s “The Avengers,” directed by Josh Whedon, produced by Kevin Feige and with visual effects from VFX supervisors Janek Sirrs and Jeff White will receive the “Hollywood Visual Effects Award.”

“We look forward to celebrating these exceptionally talented filmmakers and artists for their outstanding work and creative vision,” said Carlos de Abreu, Founder and Executive Director of the Hollywood Film Awards.
The Hollywood Film Awards Gala Ceremony will take place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills on October 22, 2012. The event honors cherished stars and up-and-coming talent, and traditionally kicks off the film awards season with the biggest stars and top industry executives in attendance. 
“We are very proud to be the first stop of the awards season. In the last nine years, a total of 85 Oscar nominations and 32 Oscars were given to the honorees of the Hollywood Film Awards,” said de Abreu.
Last year’s awards show reached a total TV audience of more than 41 million media impressions, in addition to more than 300 million online and print readers’ impressions.

Aside from celebrating accomplishments on screen, the Hollywood Film Awards established the “Hollywood Gives Back” program to expand and continue highlighting and assisting important local and national charities to raise funds. Over the years, the Hollywood Film Awards has contributed to such charities as the following: The Art of Elysium, Artists For Human Rights, Artists for Peace and Justice, MatchingDonors.com, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the Enough Project, and Variety The Children’s Charity of So. CA, among others.
Further, the Hollywood Film Awards selects individuals to be recipients of their “Hollywood Humanitarian Awards” in recognition of their contribution to the betterment of their communities or society at large. Prior recipients include Nobel Peace Prize winner and ex-President of East Timor, Dr. Jose Ramos-Horta, Nobel Laureate Jody Williams, Father Rick Frechette, and actor and activist Sean Penn.
ABOUT JUDD APATOW
Audiences will get to experience Judd Apatow’s next film, “This Is 40,” when it is released by Universal Pictures on December 21, 2012. An original comedy that expands upon the story of Pete […]

The Contenders: Best Superhero Films of All-Time

by Joey Magidson
HollywoodNews.com: Now that ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ is out in theaters, it sort of feels like we’ve reached a milestone point in the realm of superhero flicks… perhaps even an apex if you will. Everything that will come next for the genre will be judged on a different playing field due to that film and this year’s ‘The Avengers’ as well (essentially you now have to go big or go home). Those two films were as anticipated as any other major comic book film out there, and some might say the hype has been as much as any other big flick in general. As most people would argue that 2012 has seen the release of two of the best superhero movies of all time, I thought it was only proper to give a little rundown of what I think are the 10 best of all time (at least so far).
Obviously there are lots of contenders for a list like this one, some more universally embraced than others, and it’s fair to say that no two people would come up with the same combination of flicks, but this is mine, so just keep that in mind as you read on. Of course I’ll want you all to give your picks later in the comments, but for now let’s get started and focus on my picks and see where things go from there. Which filmmakers who took multiple dips into the superhero pool got a citation from me here? Did I give any love to Tim Burton’s contributions to the genre? What about Jon Favreau’s? Presumably Christopher Nolan’s, right? Perhaps Sam Raimi’s? Bryan Singer’s could be in play, couldn’t they? Maybe even Joel Schumaker’s? (I assure you I did not go that route). First off, here are some that just missed the cut for me when compiling this list of lifesavers…
To read more go to AWARDSCIRCUIT.COM
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Scarlett Johansson allegedly offered major money for ‘Avengers’ sequel

HollywoodNews.com: Scarlett Johansson will apparently be making some major money if she signs on for the sequel to the hit ‘The Avengers.’
It is rumored that the actress is being offered $20 million to come back for another movie, states Hollyscoop. However, she is hardly making the most money for the films.
It is rumored that Robert Downey Jr. made about $50 million for the first movie.
Who do you think deserves the most in the film?
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Image by PR Photos

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