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Entries in RIP (131)

Thursday
Apr132017

Michael Ballhaus (1935-2017)

by Nathaniel R

It is with great sadness that we share the news of the passing of German cinematographer Michael Ballhaus. The 81 year old artist was a crucial figure in making me the movie maniac that I am today. Michelle Pfeiffer on the piano top in The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989) -- hell the entire movie -- being a defining image in my life, after which I went from enthusiastic regular moviegoer to celluloid-devouring obsessive.

Ballhaus had retired after Martin Scorsese's The Departed (2006) making only one German movie in the last decade of his life and we had hoped each year that he'd be announced as an Honorary Oscar recipient. His three scant nominations -- The Fabulous Baker Boys, Broadcast News, and Gangs of New York -- do no justice to his long and gorgeous career. That's because they don't feel representative of his career as a whole and because, apart from his crowning glory (Baker Boys -- which ought to have walked away with Cinematography in just about any year, let alone 1989) aren't even his best work.

Ballhaus and Fassbinder worked together all through the 70s

Ballhaus got his start as a young man of 24 in German television but quickly graduated to features...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Apr082017

American Link Story

Playlist Adam McKay (The Big Short) planning a Dick Cheney biopic which may star Christian Bale, Amy Adams, and Steve Carell
LA Times comedian Don Rickles has died at 90
Vulture Interesting observations: blockbuster filmmakers are making the same single parent family drama inbetween their visual fx movies
Movie City News on the tired false notion that 'movie stars don't matter anymore' in terms of box office which we're seeing a lot of post Ghost in the Shell opening and which we see every time a star driven movie fails essentially. Movie stars obviously do still matter but the economics of movies are always changing.

/Film in this week's strangest news: Actor/Hunk Joe Mangianello has written a Dungeons & Dragons movie
Washington Post another 'Nicole Kidman is awesome and always has been' essay. Glad we're getting a wave of these but kind of annoyed that people haven't taken our word for it all these years ;) 
Billboard Adele's "21" album from 2011 just broke a record long held by Carole King's "Tapestry"
IndieWire ranks the top 14 female action stars. The top three are unassailably major (Jolie, Johansson, Theron) but the list gets weird and debatable thereafter even including Cara Delevigne who's not yet headlined an action film at #14
Yahoo American Crime Story's Versace murder cast keeps growing and it's always celebrities. Ricky Martin has signed on as Versace's longtime partner Antonio D'Amico
Telegraph Stage star and sometime screen actor Tim Pigott-Smith has died at 70. Screen credits include V For Vendetta, Downton Abbey, and The Jewel in the Crown (BAFTA award)
Variety Angelina Jolie rumored to be buying a $25 million estate (less than two miles from Brad Pitt's home) that used to belong to Cecil B DeMille 
EW Alexander Skarsgård worries he won't get work after Big Little Lies because Perry was such a monster 

P.S. A follow up yesterday's "on this day" post. VOTE!

 

P.P.S. Have you begun thinking of the Emmy race yet?

We're still in the eligibility period and the nominating doesn't begin until early June but the campaigning has already begun in force for many shows, both Emmy darlings and other.

 

It must be frustrating to be on great TV shows that the television Academy ignores. History has shown that they don't change course unless they're basically forced to which they will be this year at least in one category: Best Drama Series has a single new opening since Game of Thrones isn't eligible for the very first time. The Emmys would be so much more exciting, and frankly mean a lot more, if the nominations were done by special committees forced to watch a bunch of things. Imagine if the nominations actually shifted per season depending on quality. All series have ups and downs! 

Tuesday
Feb282017

Links: Oscar Goodies Elsewhere

Tom & Lorenzo Janelle Monáe owns everything and wore it all out last night
Vulture theories on why Moonlight won
AV Club "Why does Nicole Kidman clap like that and will she stop it please?" LOL

Deadline Iran and France praise Asghar Farhadi's Oscar win 
The Hill the State department does too but then quickly deletes the tweet 
Out Michael Musto on queer moments from the broadcast and Brokeback payback
Vanity Fair fashion transformations from the Oscars to the after parties 

Oscar Snafus
HuffPo This is interesting. Turns out HuffPo posted an article BEFORE the Oscars about what would happen if the wrong winner was read out on Oscar night and the procedure that would follow. Not everything lines up with what happened Sunday
Slate reviews the tape to illustrated what happened when during the Best Picture mix-up which is what I said I wanted done but knew I didn't have the strength to do (in this piece on the Oscar's own dream ballet)
Variety the other snafu at the Oscars during "In Memorium". Whod'a thunk that The Piano (1993) woud resurface in a huge gaffe kind of way with Oscar mixing up its producer Jan Chapman and its Costume Designer Janet Patterson? 

Exit Trivia
Thanks to THR's Scott Feinberg for uncovering this. The La La Land / Moonlight envelope fiasco was the second time in history that this happened. The first was for the 1963 Oscars when eventual Best Picture winner Tom Jones was named as the Best Original Score winner. But the winner was actually Andre Previn for Irma La Douce. Sammy Davis Jr handled it well, you must admit.

In related news that proposed upcoming Sammy Davis Jr biopic could be so great. The career, cast of characters, and context in which it happened is so rich for storytelling. Let's hope they cast, write, and direct it well.

Tuesday
Feb282017

Bill Paxton (1955-2017)

By Nathaniel R

In all the hoopla and festivities surrounding Oscar night, we neglected to note the passing of an actor who has a real pop culture fixture since the 1980s. Bill Paxton died of complications in surgery the day before the Oscars. He was currently leading the TV adaptation of Training Day in the former Denzel Washington role (they had reversed the race dynamics of the leads for the series). CBS says the role will not be recast though they have not yet announced if there will be a second season.

Paxton's first credited feature role was as "Soldier" in the comedy Stripes (1981) but most people first noticed him in the mid 80s in the films of James Cameron and Kathryn Bigelow...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Jan282017

John Hurt and Emmanuelle Riva (RIP)

Two departures to report, both of them Oscar nominees and enduring figures of great cinema. Major British thespian Sir John Hurt and French icon Emmanuelle Riva have died at 77 and 89 respectively...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jan252017

Link Her Moore

NYT TV comedy legend and dramatic Oscar nominee Mary Tyler Moore (Ordinary People, The Mary Tyler Moore Show) dies at 80
Empire Actor Dan Aykroyd pays tribute to his Blues Brothers co-star Carrie Fisher in a new essay
Awards Daily Ava DuVernay and Oprah Winfrey interview to air on Netflix tomorrow 

Playbill If you're near Cambridge, there's a new production of Night of the Iguana starring James Earl Jones and Amanda Plummer (!) opening in February 
Tracking Board Jacob Tremblay signs on to a reboot of Predator as an autistic child with a gift for languages
/Film X-Men is getting its own TV series, unrelated to the movies. Good luck with that 
THR on all the times the Star Wars universe has used "The Last Jedi"  
People Scarlett Johansson and Romain Dauriac have split 
Interview talks to Asghar Farhadi about his Oscar nominated film The Salesman 

More Oscar Reactions
MNPP Jason does not like Hacksaw Ridge. But will still ogle the soldiers
Washington Post subtlety and Oscar don't always mix. Bye Amy! 
The New Yorker if you can get past the condescension of Richard Brody's opening 'graphs he says a lot of good things thereafter about the Oscar nominees and the beauty of Annette Bening's missing performance

Call Me By Your Name Sundance premiere won raves

Sundance Fever
Tracking Board bidding war and awards season plans for Dee Rees Mudbound
Coming Soon Netflix picks of new Marti Noxon (Buffy) movie To the Bone about aneroxia
/Film is keeping a list of all the movies that have sold
Variety gay drama Call Me By Your Name starring Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet (best known for playing Finn on Homeland and McConaughey's son in Interstellar) won lots of sexy buzz out of Sundance. I know I'm supposed to be excited because it's a gay drama but honestly my entire obsession with getting to that movie as quick as possible is that I L-O-V-E Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love, A Bigger Splash) who directs. Now if he would just get on with making that Auntie Mame remake with Tilda.