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Entries in Michael Shannon (11)

Wednesday
Sep182013

James Franco, Disembodied

TFE's coverage of the 51st New York Film Festival (Sept 27-Oct 14) begins now. Here's JA on James Franco's press conference for Child of God...

He came at us as a disembodied voice, booming across the auditorium. There was no face to behold - only his words. His Word? Was it the voice of God? I suppose that depends on your definition. If your definition of God is broad in scope (like, that scope includes all of matter itself) then maybe you find room under the umbrella of godliness for actor slash art-provocateur James Franco. It's really not that big a stretch - he is now the man behind the curtain in Oz, after all. There were no bursting flames or rear projection here, but when you plunk down to watch A James Franco Movie (which I find myself spending an increasing amount of my life doing) the specter of Franco always looms large, even if hes not up on the screen. (Especially if he's not up there on the screen.) It's kind of impossible to watch A James Franco Movie not through Franco-colored glasses. We are all living in James Franco's world... well at least we are when we're looking at it from his perspective.

From our perspective here at the New York Film Festival, where we've just finished screening Child of God, Franco's adaptation of the Cormac McCarthy story about nubile young lady corpses and the hillbilly who loves them, we're just staring at a blank screen. You can follow James Franco on Twitter and Instagram and at Vice.com, but a room full of press people can't seem to Skype with him directly. [MORE]

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jul242013

Man of Steel Post-Script

Release dates are no Kryptonite for me. I can't be bound or weakened by them! I rejoined Panel Culture, a weekly comic book podcast, as their special guest for a discussion of Zach Snyder's Man of Steel five weeks into its successful run. Why did they wait this long to discuss it? They'll tell you.

 

Listen in and join the conversation about...

  • Whether this Superman is successful as icon, hero and performance
  • If this Lois Lane dynamic (or lack thereof) works
  • How Michael Shannon's General Zod measures up to Terence Stamp's
  • That surprising first half hour on Planet Krypton with Russell Crowe
  • Tornados, mass destruction, and whether or not to save a life or keep on fighting
  • What the sequel should fix or keep or jettison

  iTunes | Podbean | ...or Listen Right Here


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Saturday
Apr132013

"Kneel Before Zod!"

 

 

Man of Steel is just 62 days away.

Do you think this'll be a big year for Michael Shannon what with General Zod and The Iceman hitting theaters soon and possibly the creepy thriller The Harvest (with Samantha Morton!!!) later in the year?  I know that actors generally become far more famous (at least visually) when they're submerged in CGI for blockbusters (see also: Tilda Swinton's Narnia run) but to me Michael Shannon will always be that crazy naked guy with a thing for aphids.

What will Michael Shannon always be to you?

Tuesday
Mar272012

Just Say Link

The Guardian Jane Fonda will be playing Nancy Reagan for Lee Daniels' as yet untitled feature about a White House butler. That's the one he'll follow The Paperboy with.
Towleroad first official look at Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean (though we have already seen pap shots) in Les Misérables.
Movie|Line can you guess what the most rented DVD of 2011?
AMC Film Critic Thelma Adams on what mothers and daughters can learn from The Hunger Games

IFC Fix Actor Toby Kebbell on the troubled adaptation of Akira. He was up for the Tetsuo role but he didn't like what they were doing with the project. I admire his honesty/fandom but I don't like that he's even up for the role. Asian actors please... it's not like Asian American actors don't exist.
Movie|Line
can you guess what the most rented DVD of 2011?
AMC Film Critic Thelma Adams on what mothers and daughters can learn from The Hunger Games
In Contention Woody Harrelson's mirror characters in The Hunger Games and Game Change
Rope of Silicon a look at Michael Shannon as a ruthless killer in The Iceman.
After Elton remembers the gayest moments in Mad Men history.
EW five ways to fix Smash which has been renewed for a second season (yay!)

for fun...
Gizmodo Great Simpsons humor. The apps on Mr. Burns' iPad.
world of wonder Atheist Barbie. Hee.

Friday
Jan062012

Oscar Prediction Updates & Calendar

As someone who is absolutely not feeling it today -- why do some days torment us, so? -- I thought I'd best *finally* finish updating the Oscar predictions. So I'm working on it. As ever I'm sure you'll tell me exactly where I'm right and wrong.

Even though I'm not technically feeling it today, I am most definitely feeling it in terms of the Oscars this year. It's SO exciting for once. Lots of confusion in each category I think. Just the way we like it. If predictions aren't difficult, they aren't fun.

Picture I'm guessing 8 nominees though I think Moneyball is stronger and War Horse weaker than my chart suggests. Though perhaps this is wishful thinking? 
Director If Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen and Steven Spielberg are all nominated here, that would be madness. I need to do the statistics but I am pretty sure that that would be the most previously nominated group ever assembled in Best Director since they're the 3 most nominated living / working directors. But as of this writing I don't think Spielberg is in.
Actress Tilda and Glenn aren't invulnerable for very different reasons. Rooney Mara was surging while ballots went out but it's not really an Oscar type role so who knows? And then there's still Charlize (just interviewed) sneering at all of them in her Hello Kitty shirt. Everyone else is toast.
Actor I'm taking a risk because I keep hearing Michael Shannon's name even though his movie is basically gone. But then so is Leo's.

Shannon got one nomination by surprise. Can he pull off surprise #2?

Supporting Actress I still think this category is VERY difficult to predict. Someone with a lot of precursor attention isn't going to make it. People always say it's easy to predict this one until you remind them that six women have won plentiful precursor attention. Six ≠ Five.
Supporting Actor totally diffuse if you ask me beyond the Branagh-Plummer-Brooks triangle. Wouldn't it be a hoot if Corey Stoll or Viggo Mortensen made it in?
Screenplay Original is still super crowded and impossible to figure with at least five major contenders ineligible for the recent Writer's Guild noms. Adapted is easier but not completely simple.

CALENDAR FUN!
Today, I got the hugest package in the mail. I mean it was enormous. And this thin calendar to your right was all that was inside. HA! Here's to killing trees for nothing! But it did immediately remind me that I need to nail down my calendar for 2012. I want it to be the best year ever here at The Film Experience. I really do. The Bext Exotic Marigold Hotel promisese to open on May 4th. In worse news, The Wettest Country has been moved back AGAIN. Now they're saying August. Let's face it: that movie is never going to open. If both do open as intended who knows. Oscar 2012? The Help, The Tree of Life and Midnight in Paris, all summer releases, are still in play for 2011's race.

Here's some dates you should know about as we move forward into our busiest month.

JANUARY DATES

  • Sat. 7th National Society of Film Critics... ending critic prizes.
  • Mon. 9th Directors Guild Nominations ... which was once the most accurate predictor of anything-ever as to what would be Best Picture nominated. The last few years have made those statistics useless with all the changes as to # of nominees.
  • Thur. 12th BFCA "CRITICS CHOICE" AWARDS (yes, we'll live blog or something)
  • Fri. 13th Oscar Ballots due. Nothing on this day or forward can affect who gets nominated. 
  • Sat. 14th LAFCA Awards Ceremony (not televised)
  • Sun. 15th GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS (yes, we'll live blog or something)
  • Mon. 16th ACE Eddie Award Nominations (Editing) and we'll do Oscar chart updates .
  • Wed. 18th BAFTA nominations - not the fake ones.
  • Thurs. 19th Costume Designers Guild Nominations
  • Sat. 21st Producers Guild Award Ceremony (not televised)
  • Sun. 22nd FOLLIES closes on Broadway... heading to Los Angeles but without Bernadette Peters. *sniffle* Do not miss it! Oh and also this is the day when we'll post our final predictions for nominations in all Oscar categories.
  • Tues. 24th OSCAR NOMINATIONS ANNOUNCED
  • Sun. 29th SCREEN ACTORS GUILD AWARDS (Yes, we'll live blog or something)

 What are you looking forward to? 
Oscar Prediction comments? 

 

Thursday
Jan052012

The Link Menagerie

Stale Popcorn defines "Xanadusiasm" and we're all about it. Make it official, Websters.
Towleroad in which I make New Year's Resolutions for Hollywood since they keep having dumb ideas like remaking Carrie (1976) of all things. Just... NO.
Observer Rex Reed laments the many cultural departures of 2011 from La Liz to another Oz Munchkin.
Best Week Ever who knew that Michael Shannon had this much adorable cuteness in him?

THR Jessica Chastain coming to Broadway in 2012. I guess she wants the EGOT by 2017 or something. Over Achiever!
Some Came Running Glenn Kenny has a J. Hoberman top ten to mark the Village Voice's strange decision to dump their famous critic. 
Cinephilia & Sass has a letter to the fading James McAvoy... who does need his "Here I Am!" role surely. 
Acidemic If I were a TCM programmer... 

Your Movie Buddy shares his Oscar ballot. Kurt is also busy over at...
The House Next Door ...offering up Oscar prospects for The Tree of Life
Super Punch why your clothes don't look as good as in magazines (illustrated by Antonio Banderas)
Tom Shone wonders why Best Picture so rarely lands a Leading Acting Oscar to go with it anymore. Oddly, he seems to be complaining about it. Me, I love the spreading of wealth at the Oscars since the best film of any given year rarely has the best everything. 

Finally...
This week's most actressy event -- other than my interview with Charlize ;) -- is Nicks Flick Picks announcement of a Best Actress Birthday Party project. Here's the calendar and the first birthday party favor: Jane Wyman in The Glass Menagerie. Nick's been busy! In related news it's also Annie Hall's birthday today. Ms Diane Keaton turns 66. I'm itching for her to be in a good movie again so here's hoping one of her recently completed pictures works. It's not that she doesn't work.

Sunday
Dec182011

Burning Questions: Can You Skip the Precursors?

Michael C here to take stock of the performers left in the dust by the recent rush of precursors. 

With the announcement of the Golden Globes and SAG nominations behind us the first round of the elaborate Kabuki dance known as Precursor Season is concluded. A week ago we could let our imaginations run wild with the possibilities of our favorite performances making good. Now if an actor hasn’t heard his or her name called by either group? Well, as George C. Scott once said to Peter Sellers, their chances have been quickly reduced to a very low order of probability.

So how low is low? What are the chances of a performance getting nominated without a Globe or SAG nomination? 

Approximately 1 in 20. That's what my remarkably un-scientific research tells me. For this I took a look at the last 10 years. If you go back too far the stats become less relevant. Plus, 10 is a nice round number and if I wanted to do complicated math I wouldn’t be a movie blogger. So, 10 years = 200 nominated performances. and out of those only 12 failed to receive either a SAG or GG nod first. They are:

Nominated Without Precursor LoveLead Actor

  • Javier Bardem – Biutiful
  • Tommy Lee Jones – In the Valley of Elah
  • Clint Eastwood - Million Dollar Baby 

 

Lead Actress

  • Laura Linney – The Savages
  • Samantha Morton – In America

 

Supporting Actor

  • Michael Shannon – Revolutionary Road
  • Alan Alda – The Aviator
  • Djimon Hounsou – In America 
  • William Hurt - A History of Violence 

Supporting Actress

  • Maggie Gyllenhaal – Crazy Heart
  • Marcia Gay Harden – Mystic River
  • Shohreh Aghdashloo – House of Sand and Fog

 

12 out of 200 is 6% meaning roughly 1 in 20, or about one a year on average. So contenders have their work cut out for them, or at least their publicists do, if they want to get a ninth inning rally going. 

How to best spot those contenders that are flying under the radar? I admit this might be a Beautiful Mind-like exercise in finding patterns where none exist, but here are the lessons I can draw from recent history, plus the 2011 contenders who may benefit:

Coattails
5 out of 7 of the surprise supporting nominations were for films that also landed nominations in the lead categories, and one of them - Michael Shannon - came close. Only Tommy Lee Jones represented his film’s sole nomination so you need the film to do some of the work for you.
Advantage: Carey Mulligan, Ezra Miller, Judy Greer

Playing Favorites
None of the surprise names in the lead categories were receiving their first nomination. In the big categories don't underestimate the proven vote-getters.
Advantage: Woody Harrelson, Ryan Gosling, Michael Shannon

Category Confusion
A few of these unexpected names were the result of a slot opening up when supporting contenders like Kate Winslet jumped to lead.
Advantage: Nobody. Category placement seems pretty solid this year, no? 

December
Of the 12 curveball nominations listed above only 3 (Marcia Gay Harden, William Hurt and Tommy Lee Jones) were from films released prior to Thanksgiving, and none were released prior to September.  Once voters get to the bottom of those screeners currently piling up next to the TV there is bound to be a late-breaking favorite or two.
Advantage: Gary Oldman, Max Von Sydow, Patton Oswalt

Nail It
Of course, when all is said and done it doesn’t hurt to deliver a performance that absolutely tears the house down. I can recall the impact in the theater when Michael Shannon tore through his brief screen time in Revolutionary Road like a wild animal. When that kind of electricity is coming off the screen prognosticators can be forgiven for keeping that person in their predictions no matter what the odds.
Advantage: Vanessa Redgrave, Oliva Colman, Andy Serkis

 

So if you want to keep rooting for your favorite underdog, there's your sliver of hope. And personally, I think I will keep on clinging to my hopes of a groundswell for Bruce Greenwood's performance in Meek's Cutoff regardless of any logic to the contrary.

Is there an important angle on this I missed? Let me know in the comments. You can follow Michael C. on Twitter at @SeriousFilm or read his blog Serious Film