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Entries in Fruitvale (2)

Saturday
Apr062013

Oscar Preview Time: The Tentative Release Dates

I was more than a little surprised to read this week that the Weinstein Company had chosen a summer release date for their Sundance pick-up Fruitvale whilst Fox Searchlight went with the Weinstein-like December 27th for Steve McQueen's Twelve Years A Slave. While summer is by no means a bad move for Fruitvale (movies without stars, instant hooks, or famous directors need time to build) and Fox Searchlight can sell a movie to Oscar with any date, it's weird to see the Weinstein Company go this route; Harvey Weinstein is more than a little responsible for the modern "DECEMBER OR BUST!" fanaticism that awards campaigns live by. For a moment I worried that they might have no faith in Fruitvale at all.

It's never been true, of course, that you have to release a movie in December to be an Oscar player but the important thing in regards to release dates is that it feels true to the studios which is why we get movie gluts every year 'round Christmas. ANYWAY... that's just the two most recent release date announcements. Here's what's coming our way -- a monthly calendar after the jump -- that might conceivably have Oscar dreams of some sort or another. (Feel free to add to the list in the comments so I can finally get around to the first Oscar predictions of the year!)

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Jan272013

Sundance Winners: Will "Fruitvale" and "Blood Brother" March On to Oscar Glory?

Here is Amanda Seyfried with some paparazzi at Sundance. Amanda is great at being a celebrity. 

So even if Lovelace didn't exactly light the world on fire, she still wins.

But I suppose we should discuss actual festival winners, now that the fest has wrapped and the journos have all exited the snowy peaks of Park City, Utah. Before we list the winners, let's look at the context of how well they usually fare come Oscar time the following year. Are there any patterns?

2012 Beasts of the Southern Wild & The Sessions split the jury & audience prizes for drama, respectively. Beasts went on to major Oscar nominations and The Sessions (which also won a prize for its ensemble acting held on for one Oscar nomination in the form of the title character played by Helen Hunt (back then it was called "The Surrogate" remember?). The House I Live In and The Invisible War split the juried & audience prizes for doc and the reverse happened: Oscar went with the audience fav rather than the jury fav. (Personally I think The House I Live In is a much stronger documentary so that outcome disappointed me). 

Total Oscar nods from Sundance prize-winning films:  9
Most Predictive: Best Documentary. 3 of the eventual 5 nominees won prizes here 

2011 This year produced a lot of disparate favorites but most of the hot films in the cold climate of Park City like How to Die in Oregon, Tyrannosaur, Project NIM, Like Crazy, Buck, Circumstance, Martha Marcy May Marlene, failed to win any Oscar nominations.

Total Oscar nods from Sundance prize-winning films:  2
Most PredictiveBest Documentary. 2 of the eventual nominees won prizes here 

More after the jump including this year's winning Sundance films. Obviously, congratulations for now and well done, can't wait to see you. Etcetera. (But will we be talking about them at Oscar time next year?) 

Click to read more ...