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Best Actress -- Who will be nominated?
Davis? Blunt? Adams? Chastain?

"I'm glad everyone is cheering Fences on, but I feel that people are overestimating its Oscar potential. The furor reminds me of when people were going ga-ga for August: Osage County. " - Jes

"Davis  in Fences. I saw it on Broadway ... it is a true blue supporting role." - Charlie G

"I really hope it's Amy Adams year, only because some of her stans are so insufferable and will never shut up if she loses again. " - Laura

 

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Entries in Babs (27)

Saturday
Apr162016

Q&A: It's a zoo in here.

Hello! It's your host Nathaniel checking in from a screening frenzy. I'm at the Nashville International Film Festival briefly to serve on their New Directors jury but coming back to you, dear readers, on Monday night. Meanwhile here in New York, Jason and Manuel have already lept into Tribeca Film Festival reporting.

For this week's Q&A column I asked readers for a few animal questions since Monty, my baby boy and the world's first Oscar predicting cat (unfortunately he was never a very committed pundit), has been ill. While he's on the mend (hopefully) it's hard to pull my thoughts away from our four legged friends. Herewith 9 reader questions, some animal themed some not...

JAMES: Ever named a pet after an on-screen animal (or human)? 

My cat is named after Montgomery Clift and unfortunately the name suited him because he has been quite a moody thing from his teensiest days until now. He was found in the streets of the Bronx, as far as I know, as a tiny mewling mama-less thing and I got him way too young from the shelter. But even grumpy as he is, he is always right next to me no matter what room I'm in and every once in a while he looks at me like I'm Elizabeth Taylor and snuggles up and it's all worth it. 

(I was actually going to get a second cat years ago and name it Liz but for various reasons it didn't happen.)

HAAJEN: Which animal should be paired with Julianne Moore, Juliette Binoche and Jennifer Law in a movie?

What a weird freaking question that I love. It's like when Kidman's familiar was a monkey in The Golden Compass. So I'm going to say black panther for Julianne, seagulls for Juliette (I always picture her in the salty air near water -- is this a ghost image of Lovers on the Bridge (1990)?) I would also pay to see JLaw in the Clint role in a remake of Any Which Way You Can (1980) if only because I can't imagine the outcome of an absolute war to steal scenes between JLaw and an Orangutan. 

Naturally I have no photos to support this so please enjoy this photo of Idris Elba with a fake tiger.

It is extremely easy to enjoy. 

PEARL: What are your thoughts on Barbra Streisand and Barry Levinson embarking on yet another production of Gypsy for a start up studio? My spirit animal (fox) says they likely face a difficult and painful journey.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jan192016

Well "Hello, Dolly!" ...Again (Feat: Channing, Pearl, Bette, and Babs) 

Bette on the Tonight Show in 2014Bette Midler basically gave the game away in a tweet last night but today it's official: The Divine Miss M will be taking over Carol Channing's signature role Dolly Levi in a Broadway revival of "Hello, Dolly!" due in the Spring of 2017. Carol Channing made a huge enduring career out of the role, of course, playing it three different times across four decades on Broadway and touring with it, too. Barbra Streisand tried to wrestle the role away from her in the movie musical adaptation in 1969 -- there are multiple catty anecdotes about this in the trivia-filled gossipy book "Roadshow! The Fall of the Film Musicals in the 1960s" that do not paint a pretty picture of Babs --  but despite the plentiful Oscar nominations thrown that movies way, it didn't really stick and no one thinks of Dolly as anyone's but Channing's.

Babs, Bette, Carol Channing & Pearl Bailey after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Dec292015

You Need Serious Hair! 

Kyle back in the house to address a very serious topic: Hair. Caution: Joy hairdo spoilers ahead.

The extent to which certain moments of David O. Russell’s Joy are deliberately soap opera-y is an open question. The movie’s latter scenes, in particular, draw on clichéd images of toughness: pleather jacket, sunglasses, and, of course, newly shorned hair. It seems that nothing says a woman is serious quite like taking matters, i.e., her hair, into her own hands.

I’ll happily debate the merits of having a narrative arc reveal a woman to be a badass—since most already are in my book—but I’d rather hear what some of your favorite DIY hair-cutting scenes are. Here are three of the most dramatic that leap to my mind after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec052015

The Link Awakens

Vulture every lightsaber in the Star Wars franchise ranked. Solid rankings actually and I rarely say that about other people's lists ;)
NPR
talks to Harvey Keitel about his role in Youth
Coming Soon
Trainspotting 2 is officially a go. The entire principal cast returns to reprise their roles. Ready for round two of Ewan McGregor as Renton?
i09
Ryan Coogler may follow up Creed behind the cameras of Marvel's Black Panther (2018)

LA Times Directors of Room, Love and Mercy, Brooklyn, Sicario and more discuss nailing crucial scenes
People Sisters "The Farce Awakens". Tina Fey & Amy Poehler are going head to head with Star Wars on December 18th
Interview Magazine talks to Jake Lacy (Carol), our favorite "square" boyfriend at the movies
In Contention Laverne Cox helps with the Tangerine Oscar campaign
Awards Daily the current BFCA scores for several movies. It's always amusing to see how this lines up with their actualy nominations (which arrive on December 14th)
BroadwayCon it's pricey but theater fans are getting their own convention this January. A big list of theater favorites (Alice Ripley, Jonathan Groff, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Kerry Butler, etcetera...) already confirmed as guests
The Tracking Board has a ton of information and downloadable PDFs of 2015's Hit List, the best as yet unproduced specs

Old Queens We Love
Hey we were as surprised as you that they all showed up in the news feed on the same day
THR Kathleen Turner speaks about equal pay in Hollywood and reveals new plans -- a King Lear adaptation starring her. I just died reading that. She is so amazing on stage.
THR two time Oscar winner Glenda Jackson sticks toe back in the acting waters after years of retirement... from acting at least
/Film Barbra Streisand is supposedly going to direct a Catherine the Great movie. I'll believe it when I'm in the theater. She's as bad as Warren Beatty about kicking back at home and occassionally promising to work. It rarely happens!
Vulture Sir Ian McKellen improvised a song for Beauty & The Beast but Bill Condon didn't put it in the movie!
The Stake discovers how funny Carrie Fisher is with an old bit from SNL. That's a good thing about the Star Wars revival since she's a national treasure. Read her books!
Wall Street Journal talks to Carrie Fisher who gives good quote as usual.

Was there ever a point when you thought, ‘I don’t want to do this new movie’?

Never. I’ve been this character for 40 years, why would I not? Because I’m going to be associated with Princess Leia more? There is no “more.” And I’m a female working in show business, where, if you’re famous, you have a career until you’re 45, maybe. Maybe. And that’s about 15 people.

List Mania !
Guardian is doing a top 50 countdown daily... they're almost to the top ten and for US readers they've already covered lots of films you loved from 2014 (Mommy, Birdman, etcetera) some from 2016 (The Lobster) and 2015 goodies like Steve Jobs, Sicario and Tangerine (way way too low at #48)
BOFCA
released their awards and they yelled "what a day. what a lovely day" giving Mad Max Fury Road five prizes. As we stated last season, we're no longer going to follow / write about all the regional critics awards - just the one's that are long running with history. Why? There are nearly 40 of them now and most debuted in the past 10 years. It's too much and only important in the cumulative. But we'll probably link up like this.
Time Magazine recently hired Stephanie Zacharek (good choice, Time) and her top ten list is here: It's topped by Spotlight as so many top ten lists will be and includes both Hollywood triumphs (Creed) and indie sensations (Tangerine). Love what she writes about I'll See You In My Dreams:

How do you know when there are no surprises left in life? The surprise is that…you don’t. In Brett Haley’s gentle but potent comedy, veteran actress Blythe Danner plays a seventy-ish retired schoolteacher, long widowed, whose staid life takes a sharp left when two men appear on the scene almost simultaneously: Pool cleaner Martin Starr is the kind of platonic friend you meet only once in a lifetime; silver fox Sam Elliott is the love interest you never could have planned for.

Must Watch
I shudder when I see mashups like this to think of the man hours in making them. Adele's "Hello" cobbled together from a huge variety of movies...

Saturday
Aug222015

Peter Bogdanovich Gives Good Quote

on the set of What's Up Doc (1972)Peter Bogdanovich, one of the leading directors of the early Seventies, has finally made another movie at 76 years of age. She's Funny That Way, which stars Jennifer Aniston and opens today, is his first since The Cat's Meow (2001) with Kirsten Dunst. His career has been very quiet since his last true hit (Mask, 1985) but he hasn't been.

Bogdanovich's lack of inhibition when talking to the press has surely caused him problems in his career, but it's a source of joy for movie fanatics.It's all too rare to get unmassaged opinions from powerful artists who aren't worried about ruffling the feathers of other artists.

He just gave good quote to the Hollywood Reporter on Barbra Streisand in What's Up Doc? (1972) who originally wanted to do a drama with him instead of a comedy, Cher in Mask (1985) --  he doesn't exactly flatter her but to say he believes she should have won the Oscar that year, and making Paper Moon (1973) with the O'Neal's. That's our favorite of his pictures as you probably noted during the 1973 Smackdown last year.

But his quote on The Last Picture Show (1971) is the best:

[The scene in which] Cloris Leachman [who won the best supporting actress Oscar for her role] throws that coffee pot and yells at Timothy Bottoms — Cloris did it brilliantly. She wanted to rehearse it and I kept saying, “I don’t want to rehearse it; I want to see it for the first time when we actually roll.” I had learned that idea — to not let the actors show you an emotional scene before they shot it — from John Ford through Henry Fonda. It was Hank Fonda who told me that for the big climactic scene with the mother in The Grapes of Wrath, [Ford] wouldn’t let the actors play it for him — he wanted it to be fresh when they did it and of course he used the first take.

So I said, “Action!” and she was extraordinary. [But] she said, “I can do it better.” I said, “No, you can’t; you just won the Oscar.” And to this day — Jeff Bridges told me that he [recently] ran into Cloris and that she said, “Oh, I’m so angry at Peter. That was the first take. I could have done it better.” And Jeff said: “Oh, Cloris. You won the Oscar!”

Tuesday
Jul142015

"I'm the greatest..."

Wednesday
Feb112015

Tweets o' the Week Like Buttah

I've been struggling for inspiration today which is a good reason to clear my head via the dispensing of a whole lot of randomness. And by randomness I mean, compilation lists.

We have so many Oscar races to discuss and a few more interviews and I don't know what's keeping me but until the next post, please to enjoy these marvelous tweets from the week that was, divided into helpful subcategories for your skimming pleasure. These are the only posts you are allowed to skim. Otherwise you should read. Reading is fundamental.

RANDOMNESS

 Streisand! Kidman! Beyoncé! Grammys! 
and more after the jump 

Click to read more ...