Category Archives: News

MY WEEK WITH MARILYN Press Conference at New York Film Festival

I caught a screening of the Michelle Williams-starring My Week with Marilyn, prior to its world premiere at the New York Film Festival today. This true story stars Williams as Marilyn Monroe during the filming of The Prince and the Showgirl (1957) in England. Colin Clark (Eddie Redmayne) is a 23-year-old film enthusiast who pushes his way into working with Laurence Olivier (Kenneth Branagh) on his new film, which he’s directing and starring in opposite Monroe. Throughout filming, Olivier finds it difficult to work with the struggling Marilyn (she’s not the great actress she wants to be), who is newly married to famed playwright Arthur Miller (Dougray Scott). When Arthur leaves Marilyn’s side to be with his children in New York, the delicate and troubled Marilyn begins to confide in young Colin, who grows close to her despite the advice of everyone around.

The film is Simon Curtis’s feature directorial debut and also stars Emma Watson, Julia Ormond, Toby Jones, Dominic Cooper, Derek Jacobi, Zoë Wanamaker, and Judi Dench, with a script by Adrian Hodges, based on Clark’s diaries. It opens in theatres on November 4, undoubtedly with an awards push for Williams’s stunning performance.

Here are a few clips from today’s press conference at New York’s Walter Reade Theater, featuring Curtis, Williams, and Redmayne. (The sound quality is acceptable, but not ideal.)


Charlie Kaufman Is Back with FRANK OR FRANCIS

Despite Synecdoche, New York (2008), Charlie Kaufman is still my favorite screenwriter. And he’s back! The Oscar-winning writer of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), Adaptation. (2002), and Being John Malkovich (1999), will be directing his second film, Frank Or Francis.

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Free New York Film Festival Forums to be Streamed Online

Participants include Pedro Almodóvar, Willem Dafoe, Famke Janssen,
John Lithgow, John Landis, Bela Tarr, and many more.

New York, NY (Sept 30, 2011)—The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today a new, free sidebar series titled NYFF Forums, will take place throughout the festival with IndieWIRE, WGA, SAGIndie, PGA, New York Women in Film & Television, and Kill Screen Magazine. This will include conversations and panels at Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center Amphitheater (144 W. 65th St) from October 1-15. The free (on a space available basis) forums will give audiences a chance to listen and participate in discussions about films with panelists that include industry veterans and notable attendees of 2011 NYFF, including Pedro Almodóvar, Willem Dafoe, Famke Janssen, John Lithgow, John Landis, Bela Tarr, and many more. Events at the Film Center Amphitheater (144 W. 65th St) will also be streamed live online at

A special program of four sessions during the festival’s first weekend, Beyond the Screen, will explore how the digital age is altering the traditional role of the storyteller and audience. Beyond the Screen is a series of panels, presentations, and special events that seeks to draw together the makers driving these changes—the writers, producers, story architects, and designers in the fields of transmedia and video games—for a discussion of the state of the art as well as an exploration of the roll film has played in effecting these emerging modes of storytelling … and how these emerging fields have effected the relatively new art of film.

Please find a complete schedule below.

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Kevin Smith’s RED STATE Set for “One Night Only” Event

Note: Melissa Leo won her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, not Best Actress.


HOLLYWOOD, CA, September 2, 2011—On the heels of its chart-topping, Academy-qualifying run at Quentin Tarantino’s New Beverly Cinema, SModcast Pictures announced today the next phase of its unprecedented release strategy for Kevin Smith’s controversial thriller Red State.

On Sunday, September 25, Red State will screen at select theatres nationwide through a unique partnership with the Emerging Pictures theatre network, announced David Dinerstein, whose D Squared Films is overseeing the films distribution for SModcast. “Red State will be made available as a ‘One Night Only’ event, which mirrors the format of SModcast’s record-breaking Red State USA Tour from earlier this year. For this screening event, Smith’s trademark post show Q&A will be digitally streamed live from Tarantino’s New Beverly into all of the participating theatres, allowing audience members to interact directly with Smith utilizing Twitter. Smith will be joined on stage by a special guest who will moderate the Q&A,” said Dinerstein.

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New AMPAS Shake-ups Are Hits, Misses

This week, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences made a couple of announcements that will, perhaps, shape the future of the Oscars. A couple of years ago, the Academy decided to go back to its roots and expand the Best Picture category from five nominated films to 10. The idea was that this move would help improve the telecast’s ratings by allowing films with a wider viewership and fan-base have a better shot at grabbing a nomination. (There was a bit of an Internet uproar when high-grossing films like The Dark Knight and Wall-E were snubbed from the Best Picture race in 2009.)

During the 1998 ceremony, ratings were huge because most people had seen Titanic, the one film that stood a shot at scoring big that night—and it did. The film had such a large following that those fans were glued to their TV screens to watch Titanic‘s smooth sailing towards the Best Picture prize. Since then, arguably no nominated film has achieved the same level of interest (except for, maybe, Avatar), and the Oscars’ lagging ratings have reflected this. Now, the vast majority of nominated films are indie darlings that don’t have the same type of national or international distribution as their big-budget counterparts. So what does this mean? Fewer eyeballs. Fewer people watch the films that are nominated, and if they’re not familiar with the films that are nominated, there’s no good reason to tune into the Oscars. (And fashion is not a good reason.)

Titanic anchored the 1998 Oscar ceremony, drawing huge ratings for the telecast.

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2011 Cannes Award Winners Announced

Despite some severely mixed audience reactions, Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life walked away with the top honor at Cannes, winning the coveted Palme d’Or. Here are the feature film award winners, which were announced today:

Palme d’Or

The Tree of Life (dir. Terrence Malick)

Grand Prix

Bir zamanlar anadolu’da (Once upon a Time in Anatolia) (dir. Nuri Bilge Ceylan)

Le gamin au vélo (The Kid with a Bike) (dir. Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne)

Best Director

Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive)

Jury Prize

Polisse (dir. Maïwenn)

Best Actor

Jean Dujardin (The Artist)

Best Actress

Kirsten Dunst (Melancholia)

Best Screenplay

Joseph Cedar (Hearat shulayim [Footnote])

Film Society of Lincoln Center Launches New Film Center

JUNE 10-12

Highlights include a movie marathon of NYFF classics and appearances by Kevin Smith, Jason Reitman, Mike Nichols, Oliver Stone, Paul Schrader, and Fredric Jameson, among others.

New York, NY, May 16, 2011 – The Film Society of Lincoln Center, America’s pre-eminent New York-based non-profit film organization, announced today that its new landmark state-of-the-art Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center—a multi-screen theater and cultural venue in the heart of Lincoln Center’s campus—will offer the general public a weekend of free programming, in and around the Film Center, leading up to the official opening on June 17.

Events celebrating the film center’s opening and previewing the programming to come will include special screenings, music performances and discussions on film by top filmmakers, luminaries, and academics. Highlights will include a movie marathon of NY Film Festival classics such as MILLER’S CROSSING, MY FAIR LADY, and PULP FICTION; new restorations from the Cinematheque Francaise and the Taipei Film Archive; a performance by the band Fall On Your Sword, which caused a sensation at the recent Sundance Film Festival; and film discussions, panels, and Q&As with notable figures that include Paul Schrader, Antonio Damasio, and Fredric Jameson (the noted cultural critic and winner of the 2008 Holberg International Memorial Prize).
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10th Annual Tribeca Film Festival Cuts to Black

I’ve been volunteering with the Tribeca Film Festival for the past three years. I started off in 2009 as a “key volunteer,” working 14 shifts in 11 days (the entire length of the festival). Working in the Screenings department, I worked inside by scanning tickets and outside by managing rush lines and answering questions. It was a great year and definitely broke up the monotony of my unfortunate unemployment at the time. In 2010 and this year, I was only available to volunteer during the festival’s closing weekends. Typically, I’m not a huge fan of closing weekend. The energy is mostly gone. Everyone’s seen the films. The hype is dead. Nonetheless, I love volunteering with Tribeca and plan to continue doing so, though, ideally, I would be attending the festival in the future as a filmmaker or industry professional. Continue reading 10th Annual Tribeca Film Festival Cuts to Black