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Entries in title sequence (18)


Credit Where It's Due: A Silly Title Card Showdown

by Nathaniel R

An intermittent off center obsession I miraculously don't believe we've discussed after years of blabbering at TFE: title cards, especially as they relate to actors. My personal favorite is when the name in question aligns with the actor's face on screen (quite rare all told since the order is contractual and title card placement feels like that rare piece of cinema construction that no director has ever bothered to worry about - "just put 'em wherever!".

Sometimes they're agonizingly placed (remember when several of the goddess actress names were superimposed over shots of tertiary character John C Reilly at the beginning of The Hours). Just for kicks with the Smackdown but 24 hours away, which Best Supporting Actress nominee wins the battle of 1984 title cards? Let's take them from worst to best after the jump...

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"Main Titles" - An Emmy Curiousity

American Horror Story is one of the only series eligible every year in this category. It was nominated for Murder House, Asylum, and Freakshow onlyA good title sequence is a godsend to any series. The best of them convey the tone and spirit of the show but in a creative rewatchable way (my favorite of the past few years: Marvel's Daredevil). Series are only eligible for this Emmy award in their first year on television. The exception is of course anthology series which tend to change their opening credits each year. For example American Horror Story has had three nominations in this category for Murder House, Asylum, and Freakshow but was passed over for Coven and Hotel. On the odd occasion that a non-anthology totally changes their main titles they can submit again. This limitation makes the category, by default, my pet favorite. After all it's the only one that voters are forced to rethink anew each year. They can still be lazy with their votes, of course, but they can't be lazy in the exact same way that they were the year before. Progress!

Do the nominees this year make you want to watch the show? Do you think these were worthy choices or did you have subsitutes in mind? All the nominees are after the jump...

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Musical Moments

Time for more Film Bitch Categories. We're almost done*. Click away for the nominees in two more scene categories involving music.

Films featured in this round include (deep breath now): Chi-Raq, Ex-Machina, Girlhood, I'll See You In My Dreams, The Last Five Years, Magic Mike XXL, A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence, Ricki & the Flash, Straight Outta Compton, and Victoria

*Only eight more categories to go... Best Scenes (not featured in these categories), Opening and Closing Scenes, Title Sequence, Sex Scenes, Best Kisses, and Best Actor and Best Actress in Limited or Cameo Roles... (which generally means no more than 2 scenes). We'll name our gold, silver, and bronze medalists on Friday/Saturday.


Mucho Miscellania, Ya Dig?

MNPP reminds us that today is the 15th anniversary of American Psycho, Mary Harron's masterpiece. True story: I used to get her confused with Mary Lambert as if the same person made Madonna's "Like a Virgin" Hee!
WOW was Dennis Quaid losing his shit on a film set real or staged?
MTV Which Avenger deserves a solo film most? The answer is obvious and Joss Whedon knows it. Weird that Marvel doesn't 
i09 the real reason we didn't get a third solo Hulk film has been unveiled
Comics Alliance the Avengers playing Family Feud on Jimmy Kimmel.
Awards Daily Director Michelle McLaren has left the Wonder Woman picture 
Variety revisits the Sony Hack (remember that? seems so long ago) and the minefield of legal questions its opened up 

I'm sorry there's so much superhero bizness lately but that's all the news feed is ever offering up of late

Biggest Tease
Josh Gad says he can't wait for you to "Be Our Guest"... yep, it's the cast of Beauty & The Beast (2016). Or some of them at least. 

Can't wait for you to be our guest.

A photo posted by Josh Gad (@joshgad) on Apr 14, 2015 at 11:37am PDT

Is that Luke Evan with the suddenly pointy twink hair? If so he looks so different with shorter hair. No Audra McDonald (Wardrobe) or Emma Thompson (Mrs Potts) in this photo though. Grrrrr


Earth's Mightiest Illustration
Love this. Well done Stephen Byrne 


On The Political/Theatrical Stage
BuzzFeed points out the delightful Hillary Clinton 404 page
MNPP as if those of us with tickets to this summer's Little Shop of Horrors event weren't excited enough. Jake Gyllenhaal is announced as Seymour!
Dissolve Magic Mike franchise may be heading to the stage next
New Hedwig <-- this is my favorite reaction to the first image of Darren Criss as Hedwig. 

Small Screen
Must Love Movies the story of Daredevil's opening credit sequence.
The Playlist Cary Fukunaga doing The Alienist as TV miniseries. That book freaked my shit out back when it was a best seller but I am sad that we've lost Fukunaga (Sin Nombre, Jane Eyre) to the overworked land of the serial killer procedurals. Did he really need to do another after True Detective? David Fincher isn't likely to be dethroned as king of the genre so let's have some other genres for our talented rising auteurs! 
Pajiba shares the VERY welcome news that Katee Sackhoff is taking her career into her own hands by creating her own series since Hollywood is far too stupid to notice her gargantuan charisma. It's called Rain and its sci-fi.

Madonna Screen (aka Nathaniel's Brain)
The Daily Beast surveys the rampant bald ageism and sexism that's greeting Madonna's every move this past week or two. It's all become very Freudian with the world's collective fear of 'all consuming female sexuality.'
Watch What Happens Live Andy Cohen invites Sandra Bernhard to watch the latest Madonna video "Ghosttown" (previously discussed) and it is a joy... especially when she sees Terrence Howard cooking beans and hunting Madonna with a rifle.

He's going to barbecue the bitch!

...Get me a rib. Get me a meaty rib" 

LOL. Also on my 130th view I was looking around Madonna's beautifully lit apartment (with dirty mattress) and realized that we'll still have electricity after the apocalypse! Whew, that's a relief

Exit Video
This made me laugh so hard that I now feel bad about myself. Apologies world, I am terrible. (P.S. I'm really hoping Trixie Mattel is the queen that RuPaul brings back that shashayed away too early on this season of RuPaul's Drag Race)  



Film Bitch Awards... Openings, Endings, and Titles

Three of the final five Film Bitch Award categories announced. Click over for the nominations!

When I think of my wife I always think of her head. I picture cracking her lovely skull, unspooling her brains, trying to get answers.

Did you find any opening scene as perfectly bold as Gone Girl's recently? It's instantly classic as kick-offs go. Still horrified two months later that Gillian Flynn didn't get an Adapted Screenplay nomination. WTF. Her work was stronger than any of the nominees in her category (the good stuff was in Original this past year obviously). But that wasn't the only entrancing first minute of a film. Under the Skin's "creation" (?) anyone?

Spoiler alert! Movies have endings. Some more satisfying than others. Which were your favorites this year? Were you a bawling but optimistic and newly invigorated civil rights champion at the end of Selma, Pride, or Love is Strange? Was that desert gaze into an open future the perfect ending for Boyhood? Were you chanting USA ironically with the bloodthirsty crowd at the end of Foxcatcher or gazing up with Emma Stone in Birdman or Reese Witherspoon in Wild?

I didn't nominated The Grand Budapest Hotel here but I do love that tiny dancing Russian at the tail end of the credits and his exuberant dancing (i wish I had a gif of the confetti throwing part). That's basically a documentary of what happens in my apartment every time I finish an article. As for this category, it shouldn't surprise you to see Captain America: Winter Soldier's bold black white and red pop art as a nominee but do you remember those hilarious cast photos from Neighbors in the closing credits? I almost forgot them which would have been a tragedy. 

I mean...


Two categories left (acting in limited or cameo roles) so stay tuned for that and the gold silver and bronze medals this week as grand finale to 2014's film year. Hooray!

(And now I'm off to do that little dance backstage. Byeeeee.)


Oscar Style: Henry Hobson & Those Gorgeous Graphic Sequences

Manuel here to talk about the gorgeous designs we saw last night. The Oscar telecast was, as usual, a very pretty affair. Humor may be subjective (a pun can both garner a laugh and an eye roll) and winners can be fought over (oh those Birdman takedowns aren't gonna get any less nasty now are they?) but the show will always provide the eye candy. And I'm not just talking about the gorgeous dresses, the preened faces and the sculpted male torso that walked the stage. I'm here to talk about the beautiful title cards that were featured throughout the night. 

Combining Tumblr-ized minimalism and Instagram's cataloguing style, Henry Hobson and the Elastic Design created some beautifully stylized graphic sequences for last night's awards:

I particularly loved the (ever so brief! -- guess they wanted to keep these sequences short and sweet?) Best Picture montage:

Best Picture Oscar Nomination Title Sequence - 2015 from henry hobson directing & design on Vimeo.



If there's one objection to make about all these pretty pictures is that they seemed designed to deny us of the power of those moving pictures we were supposed to be honoring (or, in the case of the In Memoriam tribute, of the work which Meryl reminded us, would live on). 

Were you taken with the designs? Or did you wish we could have gotten full clips of some of these nominees, especially as the telecast was unusually reticent to show clips of any kind?


"Outstanding Main Title Design," An Undersung Emmy Category

If you're a carbon based life form, chances are you feel a certain amount of affection for the opening notes and images of the main title designs of certain TV series. These things have a way of seeping into our DNA.

I cannot watch True Blood's titles, for example, without singing along "...I wanna do bad things to you ♫" and it would probably take my Emmy award if the Outstanding Main Title Design were handed out only once every 10 years. Unfortunately it has been ripped off ever since and now every remotely creepy TV series aims for a mix of slow-mo vs sped up montage of religious, violent, and sensual grotesquerie from American Horror Storyto Penny Dreadful. But True Blood's titles were the perfect marriage of everything that makes that show that show. It's actually even BETTER than the show itself.  True Blood lost this category in its year to the adorable pop up multiple identities of The United States of Tara

My other favorite main title of a current series is Game of Thrones. I don't watch the show for reasons I've long since overshared but I think the opening titles are refreshingly original, a masterwork even. For what it's worth Game of Thrones won this Emmy in 2011 (Trivia Alert: David Fincher's two-time Oscar winning editor Angus Wall, who we've interviewed in the past, was the creative director!).

Even in the YouTube/Gif era when we are all accustomed to obsessing over the tiniest mnemonics of our favorite things, this category is rarely remarked upon. So let's discuss this year's nominees after the jump

THE NOMINEES THIS YEAR? Stroke the kitty to continue...

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