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Peter T Chattaway

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  1. Evan C wrote: : I think you're probably right. And I don't think the lack of an SAG ensemble nomination is a huge hurdle either, because it's a foreign film, so it probably didn't receive as much consideration earlier in awards season before Netflix started campaigning for it, and The Shape of Water won best picture last year without an SAG ensemble. And, coincidentally or not, both Birdman and The Shape of Water were directed by Cuaron's fellow "Amigos", so perhaps the Academy likes to flout precedent for Mexican filmmakers...? (Just kidding. Maybe.) : Of course, if Cuaron doesn't win the DGA this weekend, that would be a huge hurdle for it to overcome, but short of an upset for the DGA, it seems likely to assume Cuaron will get that and the Oscar for best director, and best director and picture don't split that often, so maybe Roma is currently the front-runner. And if *that* is the case, one wonders what will happen in the Best Foreign Language Film category. (Will Academy voters give the prize to some *other* film on the assumption that Roma is going to win Best Picture and they want to share the wealth? Could Roma somehow be the Best overall Picture of the year and *not* the Best within the Foreign Language *subset* of Films?) Would Roma be the first non-English-language film to win Best Picture?
  2. Just a quick note to say that I watched Roma again yesterday, and I now wonder if the lack of a Film Editing nomination is quite the hurdle here that it would normally be. The film has a *lot* of fairly long takes, in which the camera pans or looks around a room or an open field (instead of cutting between different angles within a room, etc.), and I can see how the Academy's Film Editing branch might have felt that there simply wasn't very much editing in the film to begin with. It's obviously not as extreme a case as when Birdman used visual effects to make it look like the entire film was done in one continuous shot, but *that* film won Best Picture without a Film Editing nomination, so, hmmm.
  3. And the winner is... Mahershala Ali for Green Book! FWIW, the SAG winner has gone on to win the Oscar 15 times out of the previous 24 years. (Of the other 9 times, there was one time in 2015 when the SAG winner wasn't even nominated for the Oscar, and eight times -- in 1995, 1998, 2000-2002, 2005-2006 and 2012 -- when he was.)
  4. And the winner is... Emily Blunt for A Quiet Place! Blunt wasn't even nominated for the Oscar, of course, so this win is of little value prognostication-wise. It is the first time in 25 years that the SAG winner in this category wasn't even nominated for an Oscar.
  5. And the winner is... Black Panther! FWIW, the SAG winner has gone on to win the Oscar for Best Picture only 11 times out of the previous 24 years.
  6. And the winner is... Glenn Close for The Wife! FWIW, the SAG winner has gone on to win the Oscar 18 times out of the previous 24 years. (The six times the SAG winner did *not* win an Oscar were in 1994, 1999, 2002, 2007-2008 and 2011.)
  7. And the winner is... Rami Malek for Bohemian Rhapsody! FWIW, the SAG winner has gone on to win the Oscar 19 times out of the previous 24 years -- 20, if you count the time Benicio Del Toro's role in Traffic won the SAG award for lead actor and the Oscar for supporting actor. (The four times the SAG lead-actor winner did *not* win an Oscar at all were in 2001-2003 and 2016.)
  8. Netflix Swoops On Ron Howard’s Film Version Of ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ In Whopping $45M Deal EXCLUSIVE: Netflix has come out on top in a red-hot auction for the film version of J.D. Vance’s lauded bestseller Hillbilly Elegy, which Ron Howard is directing and The Shape Of Water co-writer Vanessa Taylor is adapting. Netflix will fully finance the pic to the tune of $45M. There were multiple high net worth backers in the mix and many other admirers but Netflix’s offer blew rivals away, I understand. By almost double. Not all of the $45M will go on production. A fair whack of that will go on fees. I gather there is a theatrical allowance here which could see the release potentially play out Roma-style. . . . Howard is directing and producing with his Imagine Entertainment partner Brian Grazer and the company’s Karen Lunder. Julie Oh is exec producer The idea is to shoot later this year but cast has yet to be set. Imagine won the book rights in another heated auction back in 2017. Vance’s memoir (Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, to give it its full title), a bestseller for 74 weeks, is a critically revered account of growing up in the Rust Belt and a personal analysis of the white underclass, race and privilege in America. Vance, raised poor among working-class “hillbillies,” explores his childhood and family struggles as they navigate drug addiction, and social and economic challenges. Supported by his larger-than-life grandmother, he developed a deep appreciation for education that laid the foundation for him to rise out of poverty and its cultural restraints. The film has inevitably become a passion project for Howard and it is rounding into good shape now. . . . Deadline, January 25
  9. Peter T Chattaway


    Links to our threads on Spider-Man 2 (2004), Spider-Man 3 (2007), The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Venom (2018), Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019), Spider-Man: Far from Home (2019), Venom 2 (2020) and the in-development films about The Sinister Six and Aunt May. Links to our threads on the original Spider-Man (2002) at the old Novogate discussion board: 'Spider-man -UPDATED- with Movieguide review' (Apr 29 - May 9, 2002) 'I saw "Spider-Man"!', page two (May 2 - 6, 2002) 'spider-man, shadowlands, son of paleface' (May 5 - 16, 2002) - - - Matt Smith to Star With Jared Leto in Marvel Spinoff ‘Morbius’ (EXCLUSIVE) Matt Smith is in final talks to join Jared Leto in “Morbius,” a film based on the Spider-Man villain of the same name. “Safe House” director Daniel Espinosa will helm the movie. Exact details of who Smith would play are unknown at this time, other than it being a major role in the film. Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless, who co-created the Netflix series “Lost in Space,” penned the script. . . . Writer Roy Thomas and artist Gil Kane created Morbius in 1971 for “The Amazing Spider-Man #101.” The character was a scientist who tried to cure himself of a blood disease, with tragic results. He became afflicted with vampiric traits such as fangs and a thirst for blood — and wound up battling Spider-Man. . . . Variety, January 24
  10. And of course everything looked fine in the text editor but then the formatting got screwed up after I hit the publish button, and now there is no way to fix anything without writing everything all over again. Bah.
  11. Peter T Chattaway

    Venom 2

    Links to our threads on Spider-Man 3 (2007) and Venom (2018). Somebody observed a little while ago that making a sequel to Venom could be tricky, as the film -- which is currently the 7th-highest-grossing Marvel-based movie ever overseas (behind Avengers 1+2+3, Iron Man 3, Captain America: Civil War and Black Panther, in that order) and the 10th-highest-grossing worldwide (also behind Spider-Man 3, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) -- seemed to be so *unintentionally* funny that making a sequel which *intentionally* stayed true to the spirit of the original film, and captured the so-bad-it's-funny vibe that some audience members liked, could be a little difficult. - - - ‘Venom’ Sequel in Works With Kelly Marcel Returning to Pen Script (EXCLUSIVE) Following box office smash “Venom,” Sony Pictures is putting the wheels in motion for a sequel to the antihero adventure. The studio has tapped Kelly Marcel, one of the screenwriters from the first movie, to pen the script. Sources close to the negotiation tell Variety that, although an exact amount couldn’t be unveiled, Marcel’s deal was a significant one. She will also executive produce the follow-up, which will see Tom Hardy return as the eponymous symbiote. Marcel was also a producer on the first pic. . . . “Venom,” hailing from Sony Pictures’ arsenal of Marvel characters, grossed a massive $855 million worldwide. The news comes after the studio recently dated an untitled Marvel sequel for October 2020. Comic-book enthusiasts put the pieces together to assume that slot was for “Venom 2,” giving it the same release date as its predecessor. Michelle Williams is expected to rejoin Hardy, as is Woody Harrelson, who will portray Carnage in the sequel. . . . Prior to “Venom,” Marcel was best known for adapting another box office hit, “Fifty Shades of Grey.” She currently has a handful of films in development, including an Elvis Presley biopic and Disney’s “Cruella.” . . . Variety, January 7
  12. Peter T Chattaway

    Aquaman 2

    Links to our threads on other DC Cinematic Universe films Man of Steel (2013), Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), Suicide Squad (2016), Wonder Woman (2017), Justice League (2017), Aquaman (2018), Shazam! (2019), Joker (2019), Wonder Woman 1984 (2019) and Birds of Prey (2020), as well as the in-development Flashpoint, Black Adam, Cyborg, Green Lantern, Nightwing, Batgirl, Gotham City Sirens, Justice League Dark and Supergirl movies and the not-yet-dated Superman, Batman, Justice League and Joker sequels. Links to our threads on non-DCCU films that feature Aquaman, such as The Lego Movie (2014), The Lego Batman Movie (2017) and The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (2019). - - - ‘Aquaman’ Sequel: James Wan Seeking Seaworthy Script As First Film Makes DC History When Wan’s salt-water saga does move into the top spot it will represent a sea change for Warner Bros. and its DC Comics adaptations. Consider this: Before [The Dark Knight Rises came out in] 2012, the top-grossing DC adaptation was The Dark Knight, Nolan’s 2008 visit to Gotham City. Before 2008, the title belonged to Tim Burton’s Batman (1989), the landmark blockbuster that celebrates its 30th anniversary this summer. So when Aquaman claims the top spot it will be the first time in three decades that Gotham City will settle for second in a ranking of Warner’s heroic hometowns. Needless to say, Warner Bros. is eager to set sail with Aquaman 2. Warner Bros. has been courting the filmmaker and will likely need a whale-sized deal to lock him in. Wan is the only filmmaker who has delivered a billion-dollar moneymaker for two different studios (his Furious 7 revved up $1.5 billion for Universal in 2016) but don’t expect him to ship out from the Aquaman franchise. The filmmaker is deeply invested in the world creation aspect of Aquaman and sees the deep, blue sea as a fantasy setting that can be cinematically comparable to Middle-earth, the Jedi galaxy or the wizarding world of the Harry Potter films. There’s a lot of ocean floor and undersea kingdoms left for Wan explore. . . . Deadline.com, January 25 - - - Fact-check: Some might say that James Cameron produced billion-dollar movies for two different studios, because Titanic was distributed by Paramount in North America and Avatar was distributed by Fox. But *all* of Cameron's major-studio films (basically everything but Piranha II: The Spawning and the first two Terminator films, which were produced by independent or quasi-independent companies) have been produced by Fox, and it was only because Titanic became so expensive that Fox brought Paramount in to co-finance the film. Paramount did distribute Titanic in North America, but Fox distributed it overseas, where it grossed twice as much as it did in North America.
  13. J.A.A. Purves wrote: : George MacDonald's teaching on the atonement, and C.S. Lewis's echoing of him in some places, was the first thing I was able to grasp hold of in rejecting the Reformed insistence on how the death on the cross was necessarily Christ's being punished in order the satisfy God the Father's anger against sinners. I am not familiar with MacDonald's thoughts here, nor am I sure exactly where Lewis echoes him on this subject (though I have read a lot of Lewis over the years), but for what it's worth, my rejection of this particular *theory* about the atonement (it doesn't sound to me like MacDonald or Lewis rejected the atonement *itself*, per se) is what set me on the path to becoming Eastern Orthodox. I reached a point in my life where I became convinced (partly through Robert Jewett's Saint Paul Returns to the Movies: Triumph over Shame) that the Protestant emphasis on guilt and punishment goes back to Anselm and, before him, Augustine, but does not go back to the Bible or the earliest teachings of the apostles. So I flirted with post-evangelicalism and even attended a liberal Anglican church a few times (where I was startled to see priests denouncing the Bible from the pulpit just like the Bad Preachers in cheap evangelical movies), but I was never comfortable or satisfied with the idea of subscribing to a theology that had basically been invented the day before yesterday. It didn't make sense to me that the Church would have gotten something as important as the atonement wrong for so many centuries. I shared these thoughts with some friends in another forum, and one of them piped up and said I should check out the Orthodox, who also didn't care much for the Augustinian-Anselmian approach to the atonement -- and this appealed greatly to my desire for continuity with the early Church. I offer all that as part of my own personal spiritual journey, and not to try to argue anyone into agreeing with me.
  14. For some reason I am now reminded of that time a few years ago when I watched all the body-switching movies that I missed in the late 1980s (18 Again, Vice Versa, Like Father Like Son) and was treated to the sight of Kirk Cameron using four-letter words. (And his best friend in that film, Like Father Like Son, was played by Sean Astin, who has since starred in a few "faith-based" films of his own.)
  15. Forgot to post my interview with DeVon Franklin from last month. I visited the set last year and should have more to say about that in the near future, too.
  16. Nine months ago I got to visit the set of Breakthrough, an upcoming "faith-based" film produced by DeVon Franklin (Miracles from Heaven). Since he produced the animated Christmas movie The Star, I asked if he had any other Bible movies in the works, and he mentioned something called The Garden, which would tell the Garden of Eden story using Jungle Book-style live-action and photorealistic CGI. Today the project was officially announced. As with a lot of Franklin's productions, the pitch for this one has a very uplifting, positive spin ("The Garden will follow how the first animals and people discover the meaning of friendship, community, and unity in a world that is completely new") -- but I can't help but wonder how it squares with the fact that the biblical story of Eden ends in tragedy, as one of the animals tempts the first humans to disobey God, and the "unity" of Creation is shattered forever.
  17. Evan C wrote: : It's certainly possible, although if any film's going to pull an Argo, I think Bohemian Rhapsody has almost as good a chance as Green Book. Nah. Bohemian Rhapsody has the Film Editing nomination, but it doesn't have the DGA nomination or the Oscar nominations for Director and Screenplay. Argo at least had the Oscar Screenplay nomination and the DGA nomination (both of which it won).
  18. kenmorefield wrote: : I had been totally unaware of Whedon's fall from his pedestal as beloved author of strong female characters....I've never seen a whole episode of Buffy or Angel, adn I found Dollhouse and Firefly left me indifferent. From the sound of this, I am glad he didn't get to do Wonder Woman...but I also don't want to assume second-hand info is always accurate. My impression, as one who has also never watched an episode of Buffy or Angel, is that Whedon's fall has been happening for a few years now, ever since two things happened: (1) his script for a never-filmed version of Wonder Woman got leaked, and (2) his ex-wife went public with some gripes about his behaviour around actresses etc. In the case of (1), presumably there wouldn't have to be any second-hand info involved -- you could just look at the script itself (though I have not done this myself, I have only read other people's comments about it).
  19. Re: Never Look Away, it was vaguely on my radar because it was on the Oscar shortlist, and also because it was directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (who previously won an Oscar for 2006's The Lives of Others). But it hasn't played in Vancouver at all, to my knowledge, not even at the festivals. Here's hoping it sticks to its February 22 release date (or, at least, that it has a press screening in advance of that date, even if the date itself gets bumped). Joel Mayward wrote: : Another observation: someone on Twitter (I can't remember who) mentioned that there is a very real possibility that Green Book wins Best Picture and Spike Lee wins Best Director, which would be...interesting. It would be! Andrew wrote: : I still need to see Capernaum, Border, and Never Look Away - the premises for each sound quite interesting. I saw Border quite spur-of-the-moment just nine days ago -- I was literally out for a walk here in Surrey when I checked the local movie listings on my phone, saw that Border was playing at a specialty theatre in Vancouver a couple hours later, and then decided to walk to the SkyTrain and make my way to the theatre, where I arrived only a few minutes before the movie started. The film was on my radar because it had made the makeup & hairstyling shortlist, and that branch of the Academy has shown an interest in Swedish films these last few years (other recent nominees include 2016's A Man Called Ove and 2015's The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared), so it seemed like there was a good possibility it would make the final list of nominees.
  20. Extra thought: Is Black Panther the first superhero movie to be nominated for Best Picture? Depends on whether or not you count 2014's Birdman, which was about an actor who *played* a superhero (and starred an actor who really *had* played a superhero). I'm tempted to say that it's the first *comic book* movie to be nominated for Best Picture, but I wouldn't be surprised if some serious drama turned out to have been based on a graphic novel or something. Superheroes are also big this year inasmuch as Animated Feature seems to be a showdown between Incredibles 2 (which has the box-office success and Disney-Pixar brand working in its favour) and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (which has all the critical love). (Note: the only sequels that have won Animated Feature to date are Toy Story 3, which was a long-delayed follow-up to two films that came out before the Animated Feature category even *existed*, and Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, which was the first feature-length film featuring the title characters, who had previously starred in three animated *short* films, two of which won Oscars in that category. The original Incredibles won Animated Feature in 2004... but there is a precedent for a Marvel-based film winning Animated Feature too, inasmuch as Big Hero 6 won the award in 2014... Of course, Big Hero 6 was a Disney release, like the Incredibles movies, whereas Spider-Man is not...)
  21. And the feature-length nominated films are (with the ones I've seen in bold)... 10 nominations Roma -- Picture, director (Alfonso Cuaron), actress (Yalitza Aparicio), supporting actress (Marina De Tavira), original screenplay, cinematography, production design, sound editing, sound mixing, foreign language film 10 nominations in 9 categories The Favourite -- Picture, director (Yorgos Lanthimos), actress (Olivia Colman), supporting actress (Emma Stone, Rachel Weisz), original screenplay, cinematography, production design, costume design, film editing 8 nominations A Star Is Born -- Picture, actor (Bradley Cooper), actress (Lady Gaga), supporting actor (Sam Elliott), adapted screenplay, cinematography, original song, sound mixing Vice -- Picture, director (Adam McKay), actor (Christian Bale), supporting actor (Sam Rockwell), supporting actress (Amy Adams), original screenplay, makeup and hairstyling, film editing 7 nominations Black Panther -- Picture, production design, costume design, original score, original song, sound editing, sound mixing 6 nominations BlacKkKlansman -- Picture, director (Spike Lee), supporting actor (Adam Driver), adapted screenplay, film editing, original score 5 nominations Bohemian Rhapsody -- Picture, actor (Rami Malek), film editing, sound editing, sound mixing Green Book -- Picture, actor (Viggo Mortensen), supporting actor (Mahershala Ali), original screenplay, film editing 4 nominations First Man -- Production design, visual effects, sound editing, sound mixing Mary Poppins Returns -- Production design, costume design, original score, original song 3 nominations The Ballad of Buster Scruggs -- Adapted screenplay, costume design, original song Can You Ever Forgive Me? -- Actress (Melissa McCarthy), supporting actor (Richard E. Grant), adapted screenplay Cold War -- Director (Pawel Pawlikowski), cinematography, foreign language film If Beale Street Could Talk -- Supporting actress (Regina King), adapted screenplay, original score 2 nominations Isle of Dogs -- Original score, animated feature Mary Queen of Scots -- Costume design, makeup and hairstyling Never Look Away -- Cinematography, foreign language film RBG -- Original song, documentary feature 1 nomination At Eternity's Gate -- Actor (Willem Dafoe) Avengers: Infinity War -- Visual effects Border -- Makeup and hairstyling Capernaum -- Foreign language film Christopher Robin -- Visual effects First Reformed -- Original screenplay Free Solo -- Documentary feature Hale County This Morning, This Evening -- Documentary feature Incredibles 2 -- Animated feature Minding the Gap -- Documentary feature Mirai -- Animated feature Of Fathers and Sons -- Documentary feature A Quiet Place -- Sound editing Ralph Breaks the Internet -- Animated feature Ready Player One -- Visual effects Shoplifters -- Foreign language film Solo: A Star Wars Story -- Visual effects Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse -- Animated feature The Wife -- Actress (Glenn Close) I'm happy to say that there are only three films on this list that I haven't seen. The Wife is due out on video next week, I believe, and Never Look Away will supposedly come to Vancouver on February 22, two days before the Oscar ceremony (though the distributor of that film has had a regrettable tendency to see their films get bumped repeatedly). That just leaves the documentary Of Fathers and Sons, a film that I have heard absolutely *nothing* about -- the only mention of it in my e-mail archives is a news alert from Deadline Hollywood as part of their awards-season coverage. Anyway. What patterns can we discern here? A few quick thoughts before I have to step out: If Best Picture generally goes to the film that gets nominated for Director, Screenplay and Film Editing, then the front-runners this year are The Favourite, Vice and BlacKkKlansman. Traditionally, when a film is nominated for Best Picture *and* Best Foreign Language Film, it wins the latter category (think of Life Is Beautiful or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). Roma has the most nominations overall -- which would ordinarily make it a front-runner -- but without a Film Editing nomination, it may be destined to settle for the Foreign Language Film award like those other films. A Star Is Born was once considered *the* front-runner for Best Picture by some people, but it failed to get nominations in Directing *and* Film Editing, so. No less than *three* of this year's Foreign Language Film nominees are also nominated for Cinematography, and two are nominated for Director. Isle of Dogs and RBG also broke out of the animated and documentary ghettoes, respectively, with nominations for their music. I have to step out now, but may have more thoughts later.
  22. Vote! Note: the Oscars agreed with four of the SAG ensemble nominees (the one film that got snubbed being Crazy Rich Asians), and all eight of the Oscar nominees were among the ten films nominated for the PGA award (the two PGA nominees that got snubbed being Crazy Rich Asians and A Quiet Place).
  23. Vote! Note: the Oscars agreed with three of the DGA picks, but substituted Cold War's Pawlikowski and The Favourite's Lanthimos for A Star Is Born's Cooper and Green Book's Farrelly.
  24. Vote! Note: the Oscars agreed with three of the WGA picks, but substituted The Favourite and First Reformed for Eighth Grade and A Quiet Place.
  25. Vote! Note: Can You Ever Forgive Me? and If Beale Street Could Talk are the only Oscar nominees that got nominated for the WGA *and* Scripter awards. The Oscars also went with the WGA's BlacKkKlansman and A Star Is Born, but substituted The Ballad of Buster Scruggs for Black Panther.
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