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Toronto Film Fest Unveils First Slate Announcement for TIFF 2014

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The Toronto Film Fest unfurls September 4th through the 14th. New York kind of pulled an announcement coup, being the first major North American fest to announce the premiere of David Fincher’s Gone Girl, and Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice, with Inarritu’s Birdman closing. But TIFF is right up on its tail, announcing a partial slate today. Among those announced early, Ed Zwick’s chess drama Pawn Sacrifice (I can’t wait…

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Infographic: Women Directors Need More Support

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There are so many articles lately about how difficult it is for women to get ahead in Hollywood. The subject invariably turns to directing. Why can’t women get ahead? Why can’t they get jobs? Why, in 86 years of Oscar history, have there only been three women nominated for director whose film were also nominated for Best Picture? There have been a total of eleven films directed by women to…

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Review: Portrait of the Artist in Boyhood

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“He stood at the window of the empty cafe and watched the activites in the square and he said that it was good that God kept the truths of life from the young as they were starting out or else they’d have no heart to start at all.” ― Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses In most Hollywood movies, memories of childhood are played in flashback. Younger actors are chosen…

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Boyhood Becomes Among Best Reviewed Films of All Time, Takes Lead in Best Picture Race

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The Oscar race has nowhere near begun. But if you’re hunting around for a frontrunner, look no further than Richard Linklater’s Boyhood. 12 years in the making, with a 99 score on Metacritic – that has to be among the highest of all time on the site, behind mostly classics. Even Slant Magazine and Stephanie Zacharek loved the movie. That means not just Boyhood wowing critics, but it will fit…

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What is Caesar? The Apes Humans Deserve

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In Rupert Wyatt’s brilliant first film of the series, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, it was immediately clear that the filmmakers were doing two things to up the ante. 1) they brought to life unrivaled visual effects with the help of performance capture and Andy Serkis. And 2) they tried to hew as closely to plausible science as they could. That the first film takes care to insist…

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Last and Final Gone Girl Evidence Photo Posted on Hitfix

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Tying up the four released evidence photos, Hitfix gets the last one. Take a look. The significance of today’s date, if you’ve read the book, is that July 5th is that it’s Amy’s birthday and also Amy and Nick’s wedding anniversary (of course, it’s ON her birthday). In case you missed them, we have all four photos here. Quite an innovative way to market an upcoming trailer (July 7th). This,…

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AwardsDaily Exclusive Gone Girl Photo #2 – The Diary

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As David Fincher’s new film Gone Girl readies for release, the director is planting a few key bits of evidence on the internet on the key date of July 5th. Readers of the book might remember why that date is significant. Photo #1 is found over at Huffington Post entertainment and features the couple, Rosamund Pike and Ben Affleck toasting at a party. This image is a clue to what…

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Will Oscar Notice Rise of the Moody Blockbuster? Dawn and Snowpiercer Put Academy Prejudice to the Test

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For a while now, as I just wrote about in the directors piece, the moody effects film has mostly been ignored by the Academy. There was District 9, which got a Best Picture slot when there were a solid ten nominations each voting member could submit. But when they shrunk the nomination ballots back to five for each Academy member, suddenly those five slots simply could not sacrifice a drama…

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R.I.P. Louis Zamperini; Olympian and WWII Hero

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Louis Zamperini has passed away at the age of 97. Olympic athlete and World War II hero, Zamperini was the subject of Laura Hillenbrand’s biography which has been adapted for the forthcoming film, Unbroken, directed by Angelina Jolie. Zamperini’s family released a statement saying, “Having overcome insurmountable odds at every turn in his life, Olympic runner and World War II hero Louis Zamperini has never broken down from a challenge….

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Best Director: The Visual Effects Masterpiece

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Last year’s Gravity, and Life of Pi the year before, have flipped-flopped the traditional way Best Picture and Best Director have split. When I stood with Steve Pond in the tent at the Spirit Awards the day before the Oscars and I was trying to convince him why I had changed my mind about Gravity winning Best Director and 12 Years a Slave winning Best Picture he was continuing the…