Film Bitch History
Oscar History

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Christian Petzoldt (Transit)

Richard E Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)
Rachel Weisz (The Favourite)
Toni Collette (Hereditary)
Nadine Labaki (Capernaum)
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Entries in Canada (42)


Strong Contenders from Iceland, Denmark, and Lebanon

by Nathaniel R

We're now up to 67 entries for Oscar's Best Foreign Language Film category. We're about two weeks away from the official announcement from the Academy which is typically about 90 films long. The latest announcements:

  • Bulgaria - Omnipresent 
    Drama about a man spying on neighbors and employees with hidden cameras. No US distribution yet.
  • Canada - Watch Dog 
    This drama stars French-Canadian actor Théodore Pellerin, who has a romantic scene with Lucas Hedges in Boy Erased. This is a very different performance as he's playing a violent troubled young criminal here. No US distribution yet but playing at Chicago Film Festival next month.
  • Denmark - The Guilty
    A crime drama about a kidnapped woman and a police office. Opens in the US on October 18th.
  • France - Memoir of War
    Sad news for the very passionate fans of French family drama Custody. They went with this WW II drama instead. The film stars Melanie Thierry and Benoît Magimel. In limited release in US theaters now.
  • Iceland - Woman at War 
    You already know I love this oddball environmental activist movie! It's from Benedict Erlingsson, a former actor, who with his second film, confirms that he's Iceland's most exciting new director. Magnolia Pictures will release in the TBA
  • Lebanon - Capernaum
    This is widely expected to be Oscar-nominated. But a word of caution always with the foreign category: there are regularly surprises. Nadine Labaki's previous Lebanese submission Where Do We Go Now? was expected to be Oscar-nominated after winning prizes at Cannes and TIFF's People's Choice Award in 2011...but had to settle for a Critics Choice nomination only when the mainstream awards season hit. Opens in the US on December 14th
  • Macedonia - Secret Ingredient
    Dramedy about a man who makes his father a pot cake and soon has neighbors and criminals after him. I believe this is available on HBO Go but will have to double check.
  • Nepal - Panchayat
    Panchayat refers to an old style of local political systems in South Asian countries in which five elders would settle disputes between individuals and villages. No US distribution yet.
  • South Africa - Sew the Winter to my Skin
    An "existentialist-adventure" set in the 1950s about a Robin Hood like outlaw who steals from white settlers and becomes a hero to the indigenous population. No US distributor yet.

If patterns from past years hold we'll see one switcheroo with a different title than was previously announced and one other title will be mysteriously missing due to disqualification or whatnot. So these charts are accurate from press announcements until they're not should unforseen circumstances occur.

Submissions pt 1 - Austria through Estonia
Submissions pt 2 - Finland through Montenegro
Submissions pt 3 - The Netherlands through Venezuela


TIFF Delivers an Oscar bound-surprise with "Green Book" 

by Nathaniel R

Go figure. The winner of TIFF's "Grolsch's People's Choice Award" is a film that literally none of my TIFF airbnb troupe (Joe Reid, Chris Feil, Nick Davis and I) saw during our 10 day stretch in Ontario. Green Book by Peter Farrelly (yes, of Dumb and Dumber and There's Something About Mary fame) took TIFF's most coveted prize. (the runners up were Barry Jenkins' If Beale Street Could Talk and Alfonso Cuarón's Roma). So we'll have to add it to the Best Picture chart when we update this week (we're looking at probably Wednesday night for across the board updates to reflect all the festival madness).

In the entire 40 year history of this prize, stretching From Girlfriends (1978) through Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017), 16 of the winners went on to Best Picture nods at the Oscars. The 40 winners also include 7 future Best Picture winners, 6 future Best Foreign Language Film winners, and 2 future Best Documentary Feature winners. The Oscar correlation is getting stronger all the time, too...

Click to read more ...


TIFF Galas & Special Presentations Announced

by Nathaniel R

TIFF is around the corner y'all. Excited we are since it means the prestige film season and another round of Oscar madness is about to begin. For the first time TIFF has allowed The Film Experience two press passes so Chris Feil and Nathaniel R (that's me) will both be covering in real time for the whole fest from September 6th through the 16th. Today TIFF has announced the 47 films that will be featured in their Galas and Special Presentations sections. These are the two sections wherein you'll usually find the mainstream awards hopefuls shoulder-to-shoulder with more traditional festival fare and world cinema premieres. TIFF usually has hundreds of films so this is just the first announcement. 

The full list containing masterpieces and duds and everything inbetween (though we won't know which-is-which-is-which until we see them) is after the jump!

Click to read more ...



Since we haven't done a link roundup in too long, here are way too many of them for your clicking pleasure and general infotainment.

Cartoon Brew Freshly Oscared Guillermo del Toro is taking active role in Dreamworks Animation going forward
Vulture "I ate like Olivia Pope for a week, and didn't die" - a hilarious journal/tribute to Scandal in its last season
NYT a profile of Rachel Weisz. It opens with beauty tips, pregnancy, and lesbian sex and I shuddered thinking we were going to get a deluge of thinkpieces about editors assigning sexist men to write about actresses but we are saved from the thinkpieces because it turns out it's a Maureen O'Dowd article
Playbill Amazon is launching a new short form series After Forever about a 50something gay couple tomorrow. Lots of theater folks are in it

More after the jump including Michelle Pfeiffer's Janet van Dyne, Isle of Dogs charity mission, Drag Race revelations, auctions of the unwanted (Ghost in the Shell and Weinstein Co), and lots of Avengers and Westworld... 

Click to read more ...


Toronto, Boston, and NY Online Critics Join the Loud "Best" Chorus

by Nathaniel R

Our friends to the north in Toronto gave their biggest prize to a film of the south, Sean Baker's The Florida Project. In their supporting categories they stuck with the clear critical frontrunners Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project) and Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird) both of whom are probably locking up Oscar nominations in their categories if not the win yet. Toronto's full awards plus the venerable Boston Society of Film Critics and New York Film Critics Online are after the jump...

Click to read more ...


TIFF Lineup! The Special Presentations & Galas

by Nathaniel R

Elle Fanning as author Mary Shelley

The annual Toronto International Film Festival, our personal favorite, is just two months away. Today they held a press conference to announce the first batch of films from their special presentations and gala sections (i.e. the premieres of multiple kinds, be it world premiere, international premiere, canadian premiere or whatnot).

A ton of films after the jump...

Click to read more ...


Toronto Critics Prizes

Toronto Film Critics Association, our friends to the North established back in 1997, stuck with their Southern neighbors in embracing Moonlight and Manchester (2 prizes each) and the folks cross the ocean in loving all over Toni Erdmann (3 prizes). Their full list is after the jump and we're so glad The VVitch was finally honored. It took the home team (O Canada!) to finally get that done...

Click to read more ...