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Oscar bits and bites

unknown New Poster for the new biopic about Steve Jobs, starring Twitter pioneer Ashton Kutcher.  The tagline, “It only takes one person to start a revolution.”

The New York Times lampoons the current state of Hollywood, or “Hollywood” as it chases down the deep pockets of international box office, the ever-growing hispanic audience here in the US and men, who are the primary ticket-buyers. As usual, the most outspoken player is Lynda Obst. Some choice quotes from the story:

“Hollywood’s popcorn season has long meant superheroes, destroyed cities, epic explosions and animation. Bigger! Louder! Faster! More! Especially more: From May 1 to July 4, studios will have released 13 movies costing $100 million and up (sometimes way up), 44 percent more than in the same period last year.”

“’Girls will go to a guy movie if it’s good, but guys will not go to a movie if it appears to cater to girls,’ [Obst] said. ‘In other words, if a movie is supposed to be for everyone — and that’s always the goal these days — you target it toward men. Cut the Nicholas Sparks. Pull back on the mushy stuff.

‘The stakes need to be much, much higher,’ she continued. ‘A gun battle? How cute. We need hotter weapons. Huge, big battle weapons — maybe an end-of-the-world device. And what about the cars? Are they disguised? Is it the future and they can fly? The visual effects are going to be your stars.'”

“‘International’  in Hollywood increasingly means one country: China. It’s now the largest foreign market, with $2.7 billion in ticket sales last year, a 36 percent increase from 2011. New movie screens are being added there at a pace of roughly 10 a day. By decade’s end, China is expected to become the No. 1 movie market, surpassing North America, which had ticket sales of $10.8 billion last year.


the comments make the piece.

Steven Spielberg and Dreamworks maybe thinking about remaking John Ford’s The Grapes of Wrath – does the movie need to be made, asks Anne Thompson?

Nathaniel Rogers at the Film Experience has put together a top ten list of those who deserve honorary Oscars. Doris Day is among them. I hope that Kathleen Kennedy, who should have won last year instead of Ben Affleck, George Clooney and Grant Heslov, wins in competition. She is not old enough yet to get an honorary Oscar.   But I’ll back the other choices 100%.

Buzzfeed takes a good long look at the demographics of the Academy and makes handy pie charts to illustrate how much they are trying to diversify. It’s startling, actually, how much they’re trying to involve women and other minorities – the times, maybe they are a-changing?