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Entries in Directors (244)

Monday
Jul312017

Oscar Chart Updates - Everything! 

The Oscar Charts are all freshly updated (but for the second two pages of foreign film submissions which will go up very soon). It's an exciting time because before the fall festivals hit and while we're still contemplating the highlights of the year's first seven months, it seems like anything's possible. That feeling will soon dissipate of course but for now, (almost) anything goes. Biggest gains this update go to The Papers, mother!, The Big Sick, and Wonder Wheel. Meanwhile Wonder Woman enters several charts, though not with much in the way of current predictions as it gears up for a campaign. Dunkirk solidifies pre-release Oscar faith now that people have layed eyes on it en masse. Taking the biggest hit this time is Detroit tas it gears up for wide release but is proving divisive and controversial. Our initial hunch/faith in The Snowman (due primarily to the director) dissipates with its somewhat generic thriller trailer.

And here's the wonderfully opaque teaser for mother! which might be exactly the kind of thing that works in acting categories (where psychological horror is sometimes popular if the film is a hit) so I've had to boost Jennifer Lawrence up in the Best Actress chart... not sure what I was thinking to so undervalue her previously...

Check out the charts and report back, won'cha?

INDEXPICTUREDIRECTORACTRESSACTORSUPPORTING ACTRESSSUPPORTING ACTORVISUAL CATEGORIESSOUND CATEGORIESSCREENPLAYS ANIMATED FEATURESFOREIGN SUBMISSIONS PT 1

Saturday
Jul292017

Podcast: Dunkirk and Spider-Man Homecoming

In this episode NathanielJoe and Nick talk about the latest superhero movie (Spider-Man Homecoming) and the latest heroic movie without super powers (Dunkirk). Plus Nick has very exciting upcoming Film Comment issue news.

Index (42 minutes)
00:01 Nick talked to Jane Campion, omg!
03:15 Spider-Man Homecoming, Tom Holland, Marisa Tomei, and a brief sidebar to Avengers: Age of Ultron
13:33 Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan's recurring obsessions, and brief tangents to Detroit and The Beguiled

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunesContinue the conversations in the comments, won't you? 

Related Posts
• Revenge of the Twinks
• Review Spider-Man Homecoming
• Previous Podcast

Dunkirk and Spidey

Saturday
Jul292017

Actress Chart Updates: Kate Winslet is Buzzing

Wonder Wheel continues to gather quite a lot of pre-release hype. It's opening quite late for a Woody Allen picture on December 1st. If you look at the history of his releases they've been summer counter-programming for a very long time now. Midnight in Paris (2011) and Blue Jasmine (2013) have been his biggest Oscar and commercial successes since the 1990s and they both opened in the summer. You have to go all the way back to Match Point (2005) to find a successful December release for the annual Woody Allens and that one came up short of expectations on Oscar nomination morning (1 nomination) despite a lot of pre-release critical buzz.

But Amazon Studios, who plan to distribute Wonder Wheel themselves (a first for them), seem to have an eye on Oscar. Perhaps they've bought into the common (and very wrong) belief that you have to be a December release to catch Oscar's eye? Good luck to them and we hope the movie is as good as we're hearing!

Consider this high praise from Kent Jones who selected the movie to close the New York Film Festival in October:

I’m not quite sure what I expected when I sat down to watch Wonder Wheel, but when the lights came up I was speechless. There are elements in the film that will certainly be familiar to anyone who knows Woody Allen’s work, but here he holds them up to a completely new light. I mean that literally and figuratively, because Allen and Vittorio Storaro use light and color in a way that is stunning in and of itself but also integral to the mounting emotional power of the film. And at the center of it all is Kate Winslet’s absolutely remarkable performance—precious few actors are that talented, or fearless.

Now, it's important to note that Kent Jones is the Festival Director and thus has an obligation to promote his festival but still... wouldn't it be wondrous to see Kate rise again after the delicious hint of her full throttle starpower returning via The Dressmaker last year?

UPDATED OSCAR CHARTS
Best Actress - Kate, Emma, and Meryl on the rise
Best Supporting Actress - Holly Hunter securely up top... for now
Foreign Film Chart 1 - Afghanistan to Ethiopia speculation

Wednesday
Jun212017

Q&A: "Strong Female Characters" and Future AFI Honors

Okay last round of reader questions before we have to ask for a new batch. These are culled from the last "Ask Nathaniel" column as well as the open thread. Let's talk Wonder Woman and Oscar, "Strong Roles for Women," and more.

MARIE: Who are the next 3 women that should win the AFI Life Achievement Award?

NATHANIEL: A timely question since Diane Keaton just won hers. But I had to look back at who has previously been nominated to come up with an answer. Living female winners number only five: Diane Keaton (2017), Jane Fonda (2014), Shirley Maclaine (2012), Meryl Streep (2004), and Barbra Streisand (2000) with the other twelve winners in this new century being men (both actors and directors have won). It's actually a tough question because they have to be alive and *really* famous to get this honor and also elderly (though Streep was young for this honor taking it when she was 54ish I think). They also have to be American (for the most part) so I looked only at people who are almost 60 or older and this is what I came up with...

 

I would probably choose from among these five next:

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jun212017

Untitled Han Solo origin story loses its directors

Robert here! The Star Wars franchise has been enjoying a commercial and critically successful third wind with the release of new trilogy starting The Force Awakens and standalone, universe expanding film Rogue One. While the next installment of the main nonilogy of films, The Last Jedi, is slated to be released in December, the next standalone film, an origin story for series favorite character Han Solo, has hit a major snarl as directing team Phil Lord and Chris Miller have just announced that they are departing the project.

More after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May232017

Zach Snyder and the Separation of Art and Artist

by Ben Miller

Many outlets are reporting the news that director Zack Snyder is stepping down from directing the upcoming Justice League in order to be with his family following the suicide of his daughter, Autumn, in March. This news has unfortunately prompted some insensitive reactions online. This brings to light an interesting separation between the artist and the art they create.

Snyder has his fair amount of detractors.  I was impressed by his debut with Dawn of the Dead and got caught up in the zeitgeist that was 300.  But, I have been less than thrilled with his contributions to the superhero genre in Watchmen, Man of Steel and Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

This has birthed a persona of the man – Zack Snyder, director.  His personal life and character has been shielded by a believed persona of what we feel this man is like, just because of the films he makes.  We assume that the CGI heavy and slow-motion leaning visual style says more about the man than anything else...

Click to read more ...