Today's Must Read
If you're interested in the Harry Potter series or gender you must read this editorial "In Praise of Joanne Rowling's Hermione Granger Series". As most of y'all know I'm not really a Potter person and this article gets at my biggest problem with it. Honestly I hate the "Chosen One" crutch in genre stories... from Potter to The Matrix to Star Wars to The Bible it's so hard to escape. It usually excuses lazy characterizations and plotting. Even two franchises that I could hardly love more (Terminator and Buffy) rest on it. I wish I could declare a cross medium moratorium on it for at least 5 years. Wouldn't you love to see what kind of fictional heroics might emerge if writers couldn't use it? And wouldn't it be better for our global character if we defined heroism & specialness through something other than accidents of birth or (the worst!) predetermined fate?
Entries in Harry Potter (21)
Today's Must Read
Timothy Brayton took up the challenge and filled out our "Summer Report Card" (see previous posts right before this one). Well done, good sir
A Blogwork Orange is currently holding a Paul Thomas Anderson Appreciation Month
I Need My Fix Amy Poehler and Will Arnett are calling it quits *sniffle*
MNPP JA tells us about a movie we haven't heard of called Blues for Willadean. Character Actress Bonanza! Dale Dickey in Daisy Dukes.
IndieWire The pilot for Revolution is available to watch. Have anyone of you watched this "all the powers gone out!" sci-fi tv pilot yet?
"Chloe" is back! Rejoice. This time Drew Droege is "Reading"
The New Yorker has a lengthy profile on the Wachowski siblings prior to Cloud Atlas's release who, as you undoubtedly know, don't often get lengthy profiles since they're rather reclusive. Lana Wackowski, formerly "Larry" gets plenty of time and...
Gawker has a response and takes issues with the way Lana's "gender situation" is handled.
"Digger" by Ursula Vernon, a "very peculiar epic" starring a wombat and a dead god, just won the Hugo Award for best graphic story...
Hugo Awards things you've heard of like Doctor Who and Game of Thrones won the dramatic presentation prizes (aka film & television)
fuck the imperialist system "Tom Marvolo Riddle" Wow, I'm actually linking to something Harry Potter again. Something three months old even but it amuses
Vulture The CW is developing a Wonder Woman origins TV show titled Amazon. Ohmygod but I'm sick of origin stories. The dirty secret of them is even though we all know all these stories already Hollywood likes them because they can cast youngies.
Movie|Line Lana Del Rey writing a screenplay. Movies as happy place? We can relate.
MNPP It's Daniel Radcliffe and Max Minghella for the film adaptation of Joe Hill's Horns
Incidental Comics "Sketchbooks of the Pros". Hee
Empire Renée Zellweger is going to direct and act in a comedy called 4 ½ minutes. Johnny Knoxville leads the cast as a comedian who looks after the Zeéeeee's child.
Eeeep! Downton Abbey Season 3 Tease.
Very short but enough to remind that we love this show in all its soapy glory. People crying, kissing, arriving, looking worried, hostile or just deeply in love? Yes, please.
Post Oscar Podcast Part 2! We left off talking about Meryl Streep's win in Part One. We pick that back up for a wee bit before a grab bag of shiny golden goodies to send you on your way.
Topics include but are not limited to...
- "the hottest guy in the room"
- Christopher Plummer and the best 'Best Supporting Actor' run ever
- Busy Phillips ♥ Michelle Williams
- Who will be the holdover nominee this year to next?
- Brad Pitt. Nathaniel tries to let go. Everyone else resists
- Best Original Song Death Watch
- Oscar Hosting & Oscar Blogging
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Shunning Part 3
You can download the podcast on iTunes or listen right here at the bottom of the post.
And that's a wrap on this Oscar year. We hope you enjoyed the coverage. I want to give a shout out to everyone who helped out during The Film Experience's biggest year ever. In addition to these podcast pals, big love to Michael, Kurt, Amir, Alexandra, Jason, Joanna, Robert, Jose and all of you reading whose passion for the site helps keep it going even when movies go sour or finances and times are tight.
Mwah! Now some sleep.
Regularly scheduled blogging resumes on Tuesday. Until then enjoy the podcasts and any pieces you might have missed along the way. Click around.
Brad to the Bone
Yahoo Movies Another Oscar roundtable I participated in. This time I'm talking Best Actor with Thelma Adams, Sasha Stone and others. I kick it off with more Brad love.
Serious Film on Brad Pitt's winning streak. It's not just 2011.
Press Play stumps for Brad Pitt (Moneyball) for Best Actor. It's weird all the excitement seemed to be in Best Actress until just recently and then Best Actor was all anyone could talk about. Maybe because it still feels like a race?
Flavorwire Ridley Scott and Michael Fassbender for a new Cormac McCarthy penned movie?
Guardian Naomi Watts signs to play Princess Diana in a bio directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel (Downfall) called Caught in Flight on the last two years of her life. I guess we need to start thinking about all the 2012 2013 Best Actress contenders.
NY Post Daniel Radcliffe not happy that Harry Potter 7.2 was not Best Picture nominated. And here I thought people had stopped thinking about that.
In Contention Happy 80th birthday for John Williams
Funny Or Die Jean Dujardin auditions for every villain role
Carpetbagger has been doing a series where they invite celebrities to fill out fake Oscar ballots (i.e. non AMPAS members. Today Tabatha Coffey. I always wanted to do this random celeb Oscar chat thing but alas, The Film Experience doesn't have the clout of The New York Times. Someday ;)
Boy Culture excavates an old Madonna interview from when she was only 34 wherein she talks about aging and knows that people will want to put her out to pasture soon. We love that she's living her ideals 19 years later and not allowing that. Given that life expectancy keeps moving up in years, you'd think civilians (who age faster than celebrities!) would stop groaning about celebrities that are "too old" to be entertaining us. I'm pretty sure in 20 years times I'll still rather see Meryl at 83 than, you know, some random 20 year old Hollywood is trying to shove down my throat. May all the talented ones keep working until they croak! This goes for the fresh ones too who are just starting out. Jessica Chastain, pace yourself. We hope to enjoy you when you're 71... if we're still alive!
From left to right: Director Asghar Farhadi (last year's Berlinale winner for A Separation), Actress Charlotte Gainsbourg, Director Mike Leigh, Actress Barbara Sukowa, Director Francois Ozon, Director Anton Corbijn, Writer Boualem Sansai, and Actor Jake Gyllenhaal ("Jakey!!!") who the crowd and photographers went wild for the second he stepped out of the car and onto the red.
Sundance is the first major festival of each new film year but Berlinale is always hot on its heels. Will anything as great as A Separation debut there this year? We'll soon hear.
Just as soon as we reached the end of the Critical Pile-Up, we hit Guild Mania. Awards season is a chain leading us to Oscar. Like SAG, the various guilds don't have as much overlap with Oscar as people think. Generally speaking the size of the Academy (just under 6,000 last I heard) wouldn't even fill one of the guilds and that includes all types and not just one profession. But it's still quite interesting to see what various artists think of their peers -- it's especially interesting when they look beyond Oscar buzz, which they sadly do less of than they should.
So what did the production designers get excited about this year... at least enough to scribble it's name on a ballot? Let's see...
THE ARTIST Laurence Bennett
HUGO Dante Ferretti
THE HELP Mark Ricker
ANONYMOUS Sebastian Krawinkel
TINKER TAYLOR SOLDIER SPY Maria Djurkovic
This is the category people tend to get most excited about given that it's the one that most closely corresponds to Oscar's way of thinking. Some are already griping that War Horse missed the list but doesn't the cozy pretty storybook look scream "fantasy" rather than "period" -- perhaps they couldn't choose where to put it? Even the barb wire battleground looks less flesh-tearing tangible than gothically spooky movie fantastical. I understand what the film is going for but the choice sometimes feel odd -- especially all the coy looking away at the horrors of war, though that's a directorial thing and has nothing to do with the sets.
On the other hand it's not like Hugo and Anonymous prefer realism to fantasy and they're present so let's move on.
Nice to see Djurkovic score here as her consistent but rangey interiors work is the absolute best think about Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy -- all those sad beige boxed-in prisons stuffed with information, from cubicles to shafts to bedrooms to libraries to board rooms.
Great Looking Period Films They Didn't Nominate:
A Dangerous Method, Jane Eyre, The Tree of Life, and W.E.