He Is the Yankee Doodle Boy

My go-to movie every 4th of July is Yankee Doodle Dandy, the 1942 biopic about celebrated song-and-dance man George M. Cohan. During his career, Cohan published more than 300 songs, including “Over There,” “Give My Regards to Broadway,” and patriotic tunes “The Yankee Doodle Boy” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag.” The son of Irish vaudeville performers, Cohan was born in Providence, Rhode Island on July 3 (though he and his family insisted he was “born on the 4th of July”). A proud American patriot, Cohan followed in his parents’ footsteps, entertaining people for years before his death in 1942, only a few months after this film’s release. Aside from the biopic, his life was depicted in the 1968 stage musical George M!.Thanks to Cohan’s contributions to American musical theatre, a statue stands in his honor in the heart of Times Square.

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Official Trailer: Sleeping with Other People

Check out the first official trailer to Sleeping with Other People, starring Jason Sudeikis and Alison Brie, written and directed by Leslye Headland (Bachelorette, 2012), and produced by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay.

Synopsis:
Can two serial cheaters get a second chance at love? After a one-night stand in college, New Yorkers Lainey (Brie) and Jake (Sudeikis) meet by chance 12 years later and discover they each have the same problem: because of their monogamy-challenged ways, neither can maintain a relationship. Determined to stay friends despite their mutual attraction, they make a pact to keep it platonic, a deal that proves easier said than done. Fresh, funny, and full of witty insights about modern love, this hilariously heartfelt film “is the rare rom-com that reminds us why we love them so much in the first place” (Time Out New York). Amanda Peet, Adam Scott, Natasha Lyonne, and Jason Mantzoukas co-star.

Distributed by IFC Films, Sleeping with Other People will be released on September 11.

Summer of Darkness: Investigating Film Noir

TCM Summer of Darkness

This summer, TCM is shedding light on some pretty dark films. The second “Summer of Darkness” (the first was in 1999) is a de facto film noir film festival, airing 24 hours of films noir every Friday this June and July. With over 100 films scheduled, the festival is hosted by Eddie Muller, producer and host of Noir City: The San Francisco Film Noir Festival and president of the Film Noir Foundation.

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Anatomy of a Short Film: The Spotting Session

“In-Kind” co-director Dan Quitério with composer/sound designer Jay Rothman during the spotting session

(Read about the entire process of making short film, “In-Kind,” by checking out the “Anatomy of a Short Film” section of this blog.)

“In-Kind” co-director Stephanie Dawson and I recently met with our composer/sound designer Jay Rothman at his studio in Hell’s Kitchen, New York for our spotting session. With limited knowledge about film music—but with an immense appreciation and respect for it—we allowed Jay to guide us a bit. We watched the film in its entirety to get a feel for it, then again scene by scene, all the while conveying the emotions we’re looking to extract from the audience—as well as what the characters are feeling—along the way. Since Jay is wearing two hats, as composer and sound designer, we discussed both crafts simultaneously, highlighting the various cues where music should begin and end, as well as the different sound effects that would help enliven the story.

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On My DVR: Prisoners (2013)

Hugh Jackman in PRISONERS

Six years ago, I interviewed upstart screenwriter Aaron Guzikowski, soon after selling his debut script to Alcon Entertainment for a cool million dollars. Guzikowski wrote Prisoners on spec while working in the ad industry in New York. His story resonated with me because at the time I was also a screenwriting hopeful working at a rival NYC ad agency. (If he could do it, why couldn’t I?) Despite Alcon’s fast-tracking of the film, it was eventually delayed and didn’t bow in theatres until four years later. In the meantime, Guzikowski saw success with what would become his first feature to hit the big screen, Contraband (2012), starring Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale. I still haven’t seen Prisoners, but it’s resting comfortably on my DVR, thanks to HBO, on which it can currently be seen.

Read my full interview with Guzikowski here.

Synopsis (courtesy of IMDb):

When Keller Dover’s daughter and her friend go missing, he takes matters into his own hands as the police pursue multiple leads and the pressure mounts. But just how far will this desperate father go to protect his family?

Director: Denis Villeneuve
Screenwriter: Aaron Guzikowski
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, Maria Bello, Terrence Howard, Melissa Leo, Paul Dano
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Runtime: 153 min.

2015 Faces to Watch

(Re-posted from LimitéMagazine.com)

Each year, lovers of film and television debate the quality of that year’s crop of cinematic content channeled into TV and movie screens worldwide. And although opinions will differ, one undeniable fact is that each year ushers in a new crop of breakout talent, both in front of and behind the camera. Yes, some have been mastering their crafts for years, and each person’s journey is uniquely their own, but it’s often not until the artists are able to express their voices in a singular title that causes viewers to take notice.

Now in its seventh year, Limité is proud to announce the 2015 class of one of its longest-running features, “Faces to Watch.”

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Academy Collection: Alfred Hitchcock

The Academy’s great, new site features a series of Collection Highlights. Check out this one, dedicated to my favorite filmmaker, Alfred Hitchcock. Explore rare photos, papers, and videos surrounding the Master of Suspense’s storied career here.

Other Academy Collection Highlights are dedicated to the following personalities and films:

a film blog by Daniel Quitério

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