“I don’t think the [Clinton] campaign…generally ruled to be out of bounds in any number of areas, has a lot of authority on lecturing any else about the tone of a campaign.” — Obama campaign manager David Plouffe speaking earlier today.Read More »
The Eye is tracking at 72, 35 and 12 — on a normal weekend the Jessica Alba thriller would be looking at something like $15 million, but tempered by Sunday’s Super Bowl it may dip down to the $11 or $12 million range. Over Her Dead Body is at 65,25 and 4. Strange Wilderness…36, 25 and 2. For whatever reason the significant indicators that the Hannah Montana concert film will be extra-big (as indicated by yesterday’s Fandango report) aren’t showing up in tracking…79, 15 and 4..
Fool’s Gold, opening next week, is now at 81, 33 and 7….decent. Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show…28, 11 and 0. Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins…59, 29 and 5. Definitely Maybe (2.14) is now at 35,29 and 1. Jumper…52, 39 and 6….not bad. Vantage Point (2.22) is at 44, 38 and 4…it could pop.
How will Warner Bros. and the Dark Knight team handle Heath Ledger‘s unrecorded looping sessions? Slate‘s Kim Masters is reporting that “it would be unusual for director Chris Nolan to have all the sound that he wants at this early stage [for a film coming out in July], and that on a big-budget franchise picture like The Dark Knight, a producer opines, “looping would be the norm.”
The obvious solution would be to use a voice artist “and there are rumors that the studio will do that,” Masters writes. “If so, the studio’s denials would be understandable: Warner wouldn’t want the public to be listening for variations in the voice when the movie is released. But the producer assures: ‘With a good voice artist, you would never know the difference.’”Read More »
“Feb. 5th isn’t going to decide anything for Obama or against,
and tomorrow night isn’t the American Idol finale.
Remember [that] the Democrats don’t play the ‘Winner Take All Game’
with delegates that the GOP does. I expect Obama to lose
California, but lose close. At the end of the day though, he’s
going to come away with a huge chunk of delegates from California.
And Feb. 12th isn’t going to settle much either. In a way, look to
“Obama just got himself 170,000 new contributors after N.H. Those people aren’t going to be voting for Hillary. I’d bet that a majority of Edwards Supporters (particularly here in California) are going for Obama.
“Also, Florida was very interesting. 59% of the votes cast in Florida were done through early voting. Hillary creamed Obama among early voters. But among voters deciding late, among voters who decided at the polls...
The usual February dog days aren’t as canine as they could be. Screenings of City of Men, The Eye, Young at Heart, Diary of the Dead, The Hottie and the Nottie, Cover, The Witnesses, Snow Angels. (What about Vantage Point?) In Bruges, The Band’s Visit and Fool’s Gold (HE favorite Matthew McConaughey!) opening on 2.8; Be Kind Rewind, The Counterfeiters and Vantage Point on 2.22; Chop Shop on 2.27 in NYC; Chicago 10 (limited); City of Men and The Other Boleyn Girl on 2.29. Plus the will-they-or-won’t-they-happen Oscars, special screenings, script reviews, next week’s DVD of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, etc (which, of course, will be bare-bones to allow for a subsequent “director’s cut with extras” version down the road.)Read More »
How does a neutral observer square “more WGA progress” and
“things are looking very good” (posted
two days ago by the WGA-friendly Nikki Finke)
with Michael Ceiply‘s 1.31
N.Y. Times report about Phil Alden
United Hollywood 1.29 post saying the DGA deal is wrong for the
WGA and calling for a toughened bargaining position?
I’m not getting a conciliatory let’s-build-upon-the-DGA deal, things-are-starting- to-coalesce vibe at all. (Consider also this Alan Rosenberg/Doug Allen letter to...
Imagine the complex thoughts and emotions being experienced by those ten L.A. motorcycle cops as they roared down Coldwater Canyon last night (actually this morning), accompanying an ambulance carrying the permanently fried, baked and scattered Britney Spears, the ultimate meltdown/basket case of our times, along with two squad cars and a handful of SUVs on a trip to a medical facility at UCLA. (Her psychiatrist apparently felt her frazzled state of mind demanded a lockdown evaluation.)
You’re vrooming along on your bike and saying to yourself, “This is my life…look at this! I get paid either way but this is embarassing. I’m an officer of the law by day but right now I’m a paid goon, like a buffed-up spear-carrying guard in a Cecil B...Read More »
Tomorrow night’s Barack-vs.-Hillary debate at Hollywood’s Kodak theatre will be a political version of an American Idol season finale. Moderated by Wolf Blitzer, questions from L.A. Times reporter Doyle McManus and Politico‘s Jeanne Cummings, no time limits — 5 to 6:30 pm Pacific. Invited guests will be let in at 2:30 pm, doors close at 4 pm; cameras, cell phones and PDA’s verboten. This column will shut down around noon or so.
There’s a sublime tension and at the same time a kind of coming together in Lindsay Anderson‘s This Sporting Life (’63), which was re-issued last week on a Criterion DVD. A 1963 kitchen-sink drama about a somewhat loutish, emotionally needy rugby player (Richard Harris) blundering his way through an unexamined life, it has the usual elements — British working-class despair, rage, sex, banging into furniture..
But there’s such balm and tranquility provided by Denys Coop‘s black-and-white cinematography that it all seems strangely beautiful. Monochrome as luscious as Technicolor, sometimes moody and murky or fog-lit, sometimes pierced by odd shafts of light or reflections of same. A rough-and-tumble world lit and captured with tonal perfection.Read More »
“Barack Obama has now cut the gap with Hillary Clinton to 6 percentage points among Democrats nationally in the Gallup Poll Daily tracking three-day average,” today’s Gallup summary reads. “And interviewing conducted Tuesday night shows the gap between the two candidates is within a few points.
“Obama’s position has been strengthening on a day-by-day basis. As recently as Jan. 18-20, Clinton led Obama by 20 points. Today’s Gallup Poll Daily tracking is based on interviews conducted Jan. 27-29, all after Obama’s overwhelming victory in South Carolina on Saturday. Two out of the three nights interviewing were conducted after the high-visibility endorsement of Obama by Sen. Edward Kennedy and his niece Caroline Kennedy.”
The Weinstein Company will distribute Woody Allen‘s atrociously-titled Vicky Cristina Barcelona sometime later this year. Figure late summer/early fall. The romantic roundelay costars Javier Bardem, Patricia Clarkson, Penelope Cruz, Kevin Dunn, Rebecca Hall, Scarlett Johansson and Chris Messina.
In the Jan. 14 issue of Maclean’s, the Canadian news magazine, Allen says this the following during a three-page interview: “I finished a film in Barcelona this summer that’s a romance. It’s serious in the sense of like Hannah and Her Sisters, [but] it’s not heavy at all, there’s no killing or life-and-death issues in it. It’s a relationship picture.”
For reasons no one fully understands, the forthcoming Hannah Montana concert movie is being called (ready?) Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour. The 3D Disney release comes out on 2.1.08, and Fandango’s Harry Medved has passed along the following:
(a) It currently accounts for 91% of all ticket sales on Fandango, (b) Although plenty of tickets are still available for midweek shows, over 1,000 showtimes are already sold out, (c) It’s the best-selling concert movie in Fandango’s seven-year history; (d) Exhibitors are regularly adding additional show times at their theaters, including Thursday midnight shows and Friday morning shows (as early as 8:00 a.m.).
Slashfilm’s Peter Sciretta has posted two shots of Sean Penn in bearded, early ’70s guise as the late, deeply mythologized San Francisco supervisor Harvey Milk in Gus Van Sant‘s currently-rolling Milk. It appears as if Penn is trying to merge with Milk by wearing a prosthetic schnozz. His own nose has never been patrician or baloney-slice thin, but it does seem larger and more bulbous in the black-and-white Milk photo.
Sean Penn in Gus Van Sant’s Milk; Harvey Milk
I dropped by Santa Barbara’s Marjorie Luke theatre yesterday afternoon to see four short films, but mainly to take a look at Josh Brolin‘s X, which he directed, wrote and self-produced. A 15-minute piece about a heavily-tattooed criminal dad (Vincent Riverside) and his hard-bitten, Bonnie Parker-like daughter (Eden Brolin) sharing a violent fate in the desert, X is a first-rate effort — well-shot, nicely paced, engagingly acted. 3 days of shooting, 96 set-ups. It convinces you that Brolin will probably be directing a feature within two or three years.
(l. to r.) X costars Vincent Riverside, Eden Brolin, director-producer-writer Josh Brolin; two guys who directed an alluring short called Elevator People, and a director of another short film — ready to insert name and title with assistance...
Gentlemen of the jury, there are many kinds of silence. Consider
first the silence of a man who is dead. Let us suppose we go into
the room where he is laid out, and we listen. What do we hear?
Nothing — this is silence pure and simple. But let us take another
case, a case put before us this very day.
Having decided to drop out of the Democratic primary race, John Edwards declined during his New Orleans speech to endorse either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. He offered, in a manner of speaking, silence, but as Cromwell in A Man For All Seasons pointed out, “Silence can,...
The Sean Young-Julian Schnabel DGA video from last Saturday night. You can barely hear Young saying “get on with it!”…just barely. It’s underwhelming. The irony is that Schnabel did take too long to get rolling. His on-stage behavior seems a tad affected, running his hands through his hair, pausing eternally. Not that this excuses Young’s behavior.
Amused last night by Julie Chen‘s account of the bombed-and-belligerent Sean Young telling Julian Schnabel to “get on with it!” at last weekend’s DGA Awards, David Letterman half-seriously stated (quote approximate) a hope that “this is the start of a new award-show trend — heckling winners.”Read More »
There are no rivers of
Juno-hate. Stu Van Airsdale‘s rant
aside, there never has been. There is only a sense of Juno
proportion, which is where I’ve been coming from all along. Take
shots but don’t throw grenades because it’s a good film about perk
and snark and emotional conviction. It’s smart, appealing, likable.
Just not Oscar-winning. And that’s not a putdown. Fox Searchlight
is delighted with how it’s performed and been received. It’s all to
the good. Count the money.
Update: Van Airsdale just wrote to say he’s being “misrepresent[ed]” as a Juno hater. “Read my rant again,” he writes. “We’re saying the same thing. I like the movie fine, I just want to keep its box-office and feel-good creds separate from its Oscar creds. If...
I missed this Bagger announcement last night: “Falling Slowly,” the Once song, is back in the running as a legitimate Best Song contender, having been pronounced eligible and put back on the ballot by the Academy’s music branch executive committee.
Terrific, guys…but why, given the well-known, not-hidden facts
about Glenn Hansard having written the song for
the film and he and Marketa Irglova recording it
only subsequently on two other albums, was there a challenge in the
The deal all along (or so I’ve understood) has been that since Once failed to gather the Best Picture talk it certainly deserved all along, the Best...
Variety critic Robert Koehler and I were having a beer at Joe’s Cafe this evening when a Barcelona-based journalist friend and a significant other dropped by to say hello. I asked the guy if he knew what the Spanish- language title of Woody Allen‘s latest film is. (The English-language title is one of the all-time worst from a significant American filmmaker — Vicky Cristina Barcelona.) His girlfriend/wife said it was Somewhere in Barcelona, or, roughly translated, En algun lugar de Barcelona.Read More »
If you’re talking spiritual analogies, Barack Obama is a little more Bobby than Jack Kennedy. In 1968, Of course. And if you really run with that analogy, as a critic friend explained this afternoon, you have to accept that Hillary Clinton is Richard Nixon.
In keeping with yesterday’s Ted and Caroline Kennedy endorsements, Barack Obama would do well in Thursday’s Los Angeles debate to deliver a Hillary rip that’s as good as this classic JFK slam against Richard Nixon — something blunt and funny that makes a real bulls-eye point.
Earlier today N.Y. Times Oscar columnist David Carr (a.k.a., “the Bagger”) came up with a few fresh titles based on the No Country for Old Men acronym (NCFOM). My favorite is No Coin Flip Ordains Mercy. It took me four minutes to come up with my own: Nihilist Crazy Fulfills Oscar Majesty. Others?Read More »
“The Guild voters have not been their usual reliable selves in predicting Oscar trends this year, but the membership overlap with the academy is just too overwhelming to ignore the winds that seem to be blowing for the Coens.
“Referring to the critical landslide No Country for Old Men has received as well as the multiple critics awards for SAG’s best actor, Daniel Day-Lewis, and best actress, Julie Christie, one wag said, ‘The critics groups [seemed] to hijack the Oscars this year with their own picks.’ If this is the way the Oscars also are headed, it would be hard to argue the substantial influence critics are having on the race this season — more than ever.” — from Envelope columnist Pete Hammond‘s latest bang-out (dated 1.28).
The less money you have to work with, the more visually creative you’re forced to be. (And vice versa.) And yet Mark Romanek (One-Hour Photo) recently walked off Universal’s The Wolfman (i.e., the Benicio del Toro vehicle) because, according to a Nikki Finke item, “He’s a purist, an artiste, an exquisite craftsman, but he just had a budget schedule” — a reported $100 million — “he couldn’t accomodate…he just blew the opportunity of a lifetime.” This doesn’t add up at all. Nobody’s consumed by that much hubris…are they?Read More »