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Entries in Disney (100)

Wednesday
Apr082015

April Foolish Oscar Discussion: Animated Features

These two specialized categories can be perplexing from the outside, documentaries moreso, as to what is eligible, why it's eligible, and what motivates people to vote as they do. The official eligibility lists don't arrive until later in the year but for now on the new charts we'll add documentary titles as they make some kind of mark and we'll dive right into animated features, which apart from the foreign produced entries, are much easier to track.

Pixar vs Pixar this year?

This upcoming Oscar season, Walt Disney Studios Animation will be out of the mix after two consecutive wins. Their next features Zootopia and Moana, which both look quite promising, aren't due until March and November of 2016. To fill that giant vacuum, Pixar will likely come roaring back after an uncharacteristic absence last year with two titles Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur

But the contest that's most curious might not be a contest... at least in terms of Oscar. We have two features that are trading on collective international nostalgia for 2D classic properties: The Little Prince and Peanuts Movie. But they're both getting the CG or mixed media approach. That's not so odd since contemporary cinema loves to regurgitate and "update" (shudder) but what's unusual is that both films are clearly trying to mix the endearing flat linework and visual style of these beloved gems into newly three dimensional worlds. A safe bet: these films, particularly The Little Prince which looks "schizophrenic", will be divisive. 

Check out the charts! Which of these films are you most curious about and do you agree with the April Foolish guesswork? 

 

Wednesday
Mar252015

The Links: Buffy, Disney, Hanks, Viggo, Toxic Sets and Tight Pants

Variety several distributors want the Sally Field vehicle Hello My Name is Doris, an  indie hit at SXSW. But neither of the big Oscar dogs want it (no interest from Weinsteins or Fox Searchlight. Hmmm)
Teenage Bedrooms on Screen a tumblr celebrating movie sets from teen films. I thought this was appropriate to share after...
TFE a discussion of interesting / fun film sets 
Variety our favorite Israeli actress Ronit Elkabetz will serve as president of Cannes' "Critics Week" the festival's sidebar focused on newer filmmakers  (That's often where the best movies are anyway!)
My New Plaid Pants on a current rumor about the "toxic" set of Alejandro González Iñárritu's The Revenant

Vanity Fair looks back at Pretty Woman for its 25th, specifically it's originally much darker screenplay
TFE in case you missed it Manuel also looked back on the nation's (and his) 25 year old Julia Roberts obsession
Daily Mail Lauren Bacall's estate auctioning off collections. Her Manhattan partment is also for sale for (gulp) $26 million
The Guardian match the evil quote to the Disney villain - I got a few of these wrong. The Shame!
CHUD Marvel has reportedly cast Carol Danvers (aka Captain Marvel) already and she might even be added to The Avengers: Age of Ultron. WTH... how many actors can be in that one movie and shouldn't they have finished it already given that it opens in a month?  
Film School Rejects Anthony Russo & Joe Russo, who did such a great job on Captain America: Winter Soldier have been adopted by Marvel and will now direct all of their movies (not really but they're locked up for awhile) 

The Film Stage a one hour conversation with Jessica Chastain 
The Playlist Viggo Mortensen turned down Hateful Eight? Sad. He'd be great in a Tarantino and could use a hit
In Contention Sandy Powell talks Cinderella costumes 
ET Online and speaking of costumes, Billy Magnussen talks about his unmissably tight leather pants in Into the Woods 

Today's Watch

Tom Hanks reenacts his filmography's greatest hits in seven minutes with James Corden. Hanks seems to be having a lot of fun with himself lately, right? 

Small Screen

Coming Soon
 The X-Files stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson are returning to their iconic roles for a miniseries. The original series lasted 9 years and was revived in two feature films so it's had quite a shelf-life. 
Variety I find BAFTA so confusing. They have so many different awards branches and different announcement times. But the TV craft nominations are out with Penny Dreadful doing well 
Ryan Murphy Chloe Sevigny returning to American Horror Story next season. She was a pleasant surprise for me on Netflix's Bloodline. I forget sometimes how totally watchable she is
Towleroad rumors circulating that HBO is cancelling Looking albeit with a wrap up film *sniffle* 
Salon Jon Hamm just out of rehab for alcohol addiction. With Mad Men wrapped hopefully he won't be reminded of the glass in hand for a while. Best wishes! 

Three Must Reads To Go

1. If you're a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and who isn't) you'll LOL all through The Toast's "Every Argument about Buffy on the Internet, From 1998 Until Now." It's blissfully true to its title.

2. This doesn't have a movie connection apart from a well earned dig at that awful Flawless movie starring Philip Seymour Hoffman but The New York Times has an essay on the feminist evolution of the word "flawless" that is really something. A great read.

3. David Poland has said these things before and will say them again. And we've also harped on his underlying theme / advice to the Academy - 'Embrace the fact that you're THE movie institution. be proud, not worried.' But it's always worth repeating and he does a great job in "48 Weeks to Oscar: Academy in Crisis (?)" at highlighting all the problems... which don't have to be problems! Read it (if you've ever bitched about or defended the Oscars). Live it (if you're AMPAS). Love it (if you love the Oscars).

That's a lot to read and discuss, so have at it! 

Thursday
Mar192015

You Link Something New Every Day

• Did you know that Debbie Harry was up for the part of "Pris" in Blade Runner? [Kenneth in the (212)]
• Will the general public love Crimson Peak as much as Stephen King does? [Cinemablend]
• Which SXSW movie buzz got you excited. I'm partial to the response to this Tab Hunter Confidential documentary, mostly because he starred with Natalie Wood so many times [The Playlist]
• Have you seen the list of SXSW winners? [SXSW]
• Have you heard Stephen Sondheim's comments on Lady Gaga's Sound of Music Oscars performance? [THR

• Do you think Disney will just put down permanent roots in mid March for Princess movies? Next up: Beauty & the Beast [Variety
• Are you excited that Sarah Polley will be doing the next remake of the oft remade Little Women? [Guardian]
• Have you been keeping up with all things Madonna this publicity round for Rebel Heart. So many stars, interviews, appearances, plus Ellen DeGeneres all week. Exhausting [Boy Culture]
• Isn't it weird how cinema is so much less horny than it was decades ago, 1976 to be precise? [NSFW -Deep Dish
• Did you know that The Sound of Music is coming back to movie theaters a month from now? That 50th Anniversary celebration just keeps on chugging along [Playbill]
• Which of Netflix's arrivals and departure's this next month have you cheering and weeping? Maybe we should do A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night for HMWYBS? [Dissolve]
• Were you aware that Timothy, one of the very best online film critics (this is why we recruited him!) is offering to review any movie of your choosing for a donation to the American Cancer Society? I just requested mine.  [Antagony & Ecstasy]  

• Finally, have you seen this supercut of actors waking up from nightmares? [Hat Tip: John August]  

It's such a movie trope but does it happen this way in real life. I've woken up like "noooo!" from an upsetting dream but generally more mumbled lethargically than the bolt upright wail. You?

 

Thursday
Mar122015

Empire Mania (and Other Links)

Arts Beat Kerry Washington to star in HBO film Confirmation about Anita Hill. Great casting
Playbill Not that it was ever in doubt but Disney is officially at work on Frozen 2
Comics Alliance Robert Downey Jr presents a one arm kid Avengers fan with an Iron Man arm. Sweet
Broadway World talks to the legendary Ben Vereen about new projects, Bob Fosse movies, and the return of the movie musical


D Listed Steve Carell as Fabio? Fabulous. Especially the low-fi hair blowing... which is particularly funny since we just saw the same "effect" in Paris is Burning 
Pajiba Courtney schools Lindsay Lohan on photoshop manipulation for her Instagram account
Disney promises no more smoking in their films ever. That's fine but if they digitally erase the smoking in their archive like in 101 Dalmatians we will feel murderous
/Film PETA wants new ending for Tim Burton's Dumbo remake and though we'd prefer the movie not be made at all, we'd like to co-sign this proposal
Howard Stern Show I keep hearing this very lengthy Madonna interview is awesome but I haven't listened yet. I'm too busy mainlining "Rebel Heart" now that it's here in full (favs: Living For Love, Ghost Town, Rebel Heart, and I think I might love the totally filthy and juvenile Holy Water but I haven't decided yet)
MNPP I never talk about John Barrowman since he doesn't make movies but I L-O-V-E him and here's Jason paying tribute in a crotch-grabbing way that I think Barrowman himself would enjoy

Today's Moment of Nostalgia
Elle Magazine reminisces about Winona Ryder's "Lydia Deetz" as fashion icon and talks to Beetlejuice costumer Aggie Guerard Rodgers about working with Tim Burton and creating the looks.

Unlike the rogue Babysitter who tired of the Club or Brenda when she finally stopped seeking Kelly's approval, Lydia Deetz was actually an original. And whether she was wearing a schoolgirl outfit stuffed with crinoline, a nondescript painter's smock, or a blood-red wedding dress to match her evil stepmother's, there was something aspirational about how few fucks she actually gave. 


Empire
 Mania - Some Links, Several Thoughts

Towleroad Some fan has made a video of Empire meant to ape the Dynasty opening. I appreciate the connection since I turned to the Boyfriend a few episodes of this show and said "I feel like this writer's room really studied Dynasty - best nighttime soap in forever." but this mashup is not really a great visual match. I grew up on Dynasty (my parents were horrified at how obsessed I was with it) and you have to have those vertical line splits and the sectional images for it to really read as Dynasty Reincarnated.
Good Black News Ratings for the show are up for the record-breaking 9th straight week. It's now starting to rival TV's mega hit The Walking Dead (!!!) I'm so happy for Lee Daniels. But I hope he doesn't quit movies because we need him there with his crazy ass Paperboy/Precious/Butler provocations.
Xfinity Jussie Smollett talks about "the closet" or rather his lack of one on Ellen. He's beyond adorable, really. And the third best reason to watch Empire after 1) Taraji of course 2) how worthy it is as a night time soap giant overall. (The Smolletts are so talented. Remember how great his sister Junee was on Friday Night Lights?) This is my favorite performance of Jussie's on Empire thus far. I may have listened to it four times as I was typing this. 

"But what are the fourth and fifth best reasons to watch the show, Nathaniel?" you ask. SINCE YOU ASKED. 4) the music . 5) the guest stars are fabulous. Courtney Love and Naomi Campbell were superbly well cast and just killing it to cite two examples. Though we probably shouldn't mention new guest star Jennifer Hudson. That girl cannot act, sorry AMPAS. The past 9 years have proven otherwise. Great voice, though. 

Wednesday
Mar112015

5 Suggestions for that Newly Announced DumBurton Film

Manuel here with your daily Disney update. By now you’ve probably already heard that Tim Burton, he of Alice in Wonderland & Big Eyes fame has signed on to direct a live-action adaptation of beloved Disney property Dumbo. With it, of course, came cries of “IS NOTHING SACRED?!” despite large corporations (in particular the Mouse House) constantly letting us know that, no, actually nothing is. Especially when we’re all so eager to shell out money for Phase 1 of their live action remake roster.

So, rather than rehearse those conversations (“What will they turn to next; Fantasia?!”) or snarkily, if gleefully, begin to imagine what other director/Disney film pairings we could come up with (Fincher’s Ursula, Bigelow’s Mulan, Apatow’s Hercules…), I figured we’d offer some suggestions for this Dumburton film:

• Cast Andy Serkis as Dumbo (or maybe Sean Gunn who did such great work on Rocket Raccoon?)
• Steer away from casting Johnny Depp (no one wants to see his take on Timothy Q. Mouse)
• If you’ll be recruiting past collaborators, make us excited about seeing what Colleen Atwood & Dennis Gassner could do with a circus (they did such great work on Big Fish)
• Gender-bend this mostly male story; might the crows be an all-female gang? (think of it: Ricci! Davis! Ryder! Green! Pfeiffer!)
• Keep it weird (but not Mad Hatter dancing weird, more like ‘is this really a drug-induced elephant dancing sequence?’ weird).

I’m sure we all have strong opinions on this one, so let’s hear ‘em! Are you the teensiest bit excited about this or is Disney’s cash-grab go back-to-the-animation-well more unsavory than when they used it to cast Glenn Close as Cruella DeVil back in the 90s?

Monday
Mar092015

New Tomorrowland Poster in Hashtags

Manuel here trying to help the social media-savvy Disney marketing team with their latest poster. Nathaniel discussed five would-be blockbusters while kicking off our We Can’t Wait series and one which was conspicuously absent (perhaps because of its constant date-shifts?) was Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland for which we got a brand new poster this past week. While I’m coolly reserved on this May 22nd film, I couldn’t help but come up with hashtags while staring at this bad boy:

#LookUp #CloudPorn #MalickMeetsDisney #ClaudioMirandaFilter #Wheatstagram #RememberTomorrow #CanBirdGoFiveForFive #DisneySynergy #MysteryPlot #StillDoNotKnowWhatThisIsAbout #InterstellarFlashbacksAnyone #BlueSkies #NotSoEmeraldCity #Normcore #Overalls #GeorgeMcQueen #LiveActionPixar #WhitherTheLeadGirl #InBirdWeTrust (or would you be an #InClooneyWeTrust kinda tagger?)

Are you excited for Tomorrowland? Gotta say, unless that new trailer totally spills the plot, I’m enjoying this “withhold everything” policy Disney & co. have been playing with this property? Might it be all smoke and mirrors, though?

 

Thursday
Mar052015

Cinderella Week: Disney's Animated Cinderella (1950)

With Disney's new live-action Cinderella nearly upon us, Team Experience is taking a look at some of the screen adaptations of Charles Perrault's classic fairy tale. Here's Tim to kick it off (the glass slipper et al.) - Editor

What better place to start Cinderella week, than with Disney's own version of the story? I give you the 2007 direct-to-video masterwork Cinderella III: A Twist in Time !


Wait, no, that's absolutely not right at all.

I give you Cinderella (1950)! The classic that saved Walt Disney Productions from extinction, birthed the studio's Silver Age Renaissance, and created the most princessy of all the characters in the Disney Princess marketing line-up, the one who will lead them into battle if they ever team up, Avengers-style, to save the world.

And it is kind of baffling to me that Disney has never apparently thought to go that route. [More...]

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