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Entries in Vera Farmiga (16)


What's your most vivid memory of "The Departed" and the 2006 Oscar Race? 

by Nathaniel R

Ten years ago today Martin Scorsese's smash hit The Departed opened in theaters. I remember that day well especially that beat just past this still above when the entire sold out movie theater exploded simultaneously with shock, excitement, screaming, whooping, collective chills. A master playing the audience perfectly so it's no wonder that Martin Scorsese finally won the Oscar for it. Strangely I have few other vivid memories of the movie other than the feeling that that deep line in Leonardo DiCaprio's perma-angst expression had never and would never be put to better use again. Also something about Vera Farmiga flirting in an elevator, and the movie's perfect final shot.

The Film Experience was definitely having an "off consensus" year -- we were all about Marie Antoinette, The Fountain, & Volver so the Oscars were kind of a let-down -- but at least it was one of those interesting years where the Best Picture contenders didn't hog all the nominations. In fact only 1 of the 10 leading acting contenders came from a Best Picture nominee. Strange, right?

What do you remember most about The Departed? And how comfortable were you with the 2006 Oscar's lineup. As a reminder the Best Pictures were:

  • Babel (7 noms / 1 controversial win - for the barely there Original Score) 
  • The Departed (5 noms / 4 wins including Picture)
  • Letters From Iwo Jima (4 noms / 1 win)
  • Little Miss Sunshine (4 noms / 2 wins)
  • The Queen (6 noms / 1 win)

The Furniture: The Malevolent Secret Code of The Conjuring 2

"The Furniture" our weekly series on Production Design. Here's Daniel Walber

There are many ways to scare an audience. Music, special effects and editing are combined to surprise the audience with loud, unexpected images of malevolent demons or slashers or whatever. But what about production design? Can you be terrified by a stationary armchair?

The Conjuring 2 holds all the answers. James Wan is an excellent horror craftsman, a director who uses every trick in the book, including the sets and props. Production designer Julie Berghoff and art directors A. Todd Holland and Andrew Rothschild run amok, with the same ferocity as the film's music and editing.

Their first order of business is to exploit some of the genre’s stand-by images. There are a lot of crosses, in this case an entire roomful.

They stand at attention, ready to demonically invert themselves at a moment’s notice. There are smaller crucifixes sprinkled throughout the film, as well as the occasional window lit to resemble a cross... 

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YNMS: The Conjuring 2

Jason from MNPP taking a brief breather between your pre nomination Oscar jitters with a look at the recently dropped trailer for James Wan's Conjuring sequel, creatively titled The Conjuring 2.

I was less bullish (my review) on the 2013 original than most horror movie fans were and indeed than several contributors here at TFE - I'm more of an Insidious guy myself when it comes to the ghost worlds o' Wan - but I do think that Wan's gotten better as a filmmaker with the years, and he sure knows how to goose a good scare out of an audience.

Anyway let's break down the good the bads and the maybes here after the jump...

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Twitter: Brie Larson or Saoirse Ronan? Vera Farmiga doing her best Tom Hanks.

Hellow it's time for a weekly quite random round up of tweets that amused us. This week's edition features Star Wars (always those wars in the stars), Leonardo DiCaprio and his bear, and a return to Room which just keeps giving us more... both from multiple viewings and Brie & Jacob on the campaign trail.

But first let's begin by noting that this tweet is exactly what I've been saying about Saoirse Ronan and the Oscar race. I've long thought she could actually win the Oscar (though the internet keeps telling me it's Brie Larson locked up). But this... this is FYC gold. (more after the jump

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Tony Award Winners

Did you watch the Tony Awards last night? The evening began with Hugh Jackman proving his physical fitness -- his knees get such a workout -- by hopping through his entire continuous shot production number, basically a tour of the backstage and upcoming performers in costume.

That led to a night of high energy but strange and touristy musical number choices like numbers from ancient top-selling shows (Les Miz and Wicked) rather than new ones that need the sales help and non-Broadway celebrities like Sting and Jennifer Hudson taking up a lot of room to sell shows that aren't even open. It'd be a bit like the Oscars going "how about Interstellar?" while giving prizes to Gravity back in March. 

Hugh Jackman also rapped with LL Cool Jr via the famously chatty opening number of "The Music Man" Hugh Jackman has now spent 14 years of his career playing Wolverine and at this point he's really wasting his life (I mean once you have 100s of millions, what's 20 million more?). He needs to commit and make only movie musicals before he's too old.  

Highlights and winners of the night after the jump...

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Where My Girls At? Chastain, Farmiga, Kidman, Bening

And now another edition of "Where My Girls At?" which occurs whenever Nathaniel is longing for actresses who have temporarily gone missing. I'm focusing this one on the beauties we won't even be seeing at the Oscars this year. 

Did you see this photo Jessica Chastain posted to her Facebook account?

She wrote:

That's a wrap for me on A Most Violent Year. Working with talent like JC Chandor and Oscar Isaac are the reason I love my job. I'm a very lucky girl. xxjes

Somehow I hadn't clocked this new project but it's an 1980s NY set thriller (so that explains the look) about an immigrant (one presumes that's Isaac, who seems to symbolize any "foreign" element these days to Hollywood) trying to capitalize on business opportunities but beware of Violence! Decay! Corruption! I miss Jes, don't you? I know that's insane since I saw her live in September at TIFF and because before she disappeared from movie screens after Mama she was everywhere for over a year. But Mama opened in January 2013 and almost 14 months is a lot of time without her given how we were introduced, you know? 14 months is a long time for her to be absent from screens but she'll be back soon since she's already completed three more pictures (Miss Julie, Interstellar, and this one) with another, Guillermo Del Toro's Crimson Peak moving right along for 2015.

The other day I was staring at pictures of my last multiple Oscargasm (when was yours?) and since it was 33% Farmiga, I was like "hey, where she be?" I know I know. You can watch her on television weekly if you so choose but I guess my despair at great actresses going the TV route is that if you don't like the show they're on (or the character they play) that's the main thing they'll be doing for years so you lose them. With an off movie you can just move on and wait for the next one. But in addition to The Bates Motel she has movies on the way. Her latest, a Romanian set crime comedy Closer to the Moon with Mark Strong just started screening at festivals in December. In October we'll see her in the large and Oscar friendly supporting cast of The Judge which stars Robert Downey Jr (in his first big dramatic role outside of franchise culture in five years) as a man who returns home for his mom's funeral to find that his dad is accused of her murder. She might costar in a Bronx set comedy called The Locals with Shirley Maclaine and Alan Arkin (but that's two years away and who knows if it'll actually happen). And finally, she'll star in the sequel to The Conjuring for an October 2015 release. That film was such a smash hit last year that it's basically spawned two sequels. There's one coming up this October, sans Farmiga, focused on Annabelle the doll - I guess Chucky's absence created a vacuum? 


pics from the Queen of the Desert set

She's working herself into the ground which is just how we like it: more more more. 2013 was a quiet year with only Stoker offered (for which she was Saturn-nominated) but the next two years are full plates. She has two films with Colin Firth hitting soon, the thriller Before I Go To Sleep and the period drama The Railway Man (which I've already seen - unfortunately it doesn't give her very much to do as the supportive wife to a man struggling with his prisoner of war past). Paddington Bear, in which she plays the comic villain (a change of pace for her) and Grace of Monaco, in which she plays uh Grace of Monaco are also emerging in 2014, the latter at the Cannes film festival. Four movies means the return of Kidmania!  But the upcoming project that's most exciting, given the upgrade in the director's chair, is Queen of the Desert from the always interesting Werner Herzog. She's playing Gertrude Bell and since that's a biographical part, we can hope it's another opportunity for endless red carpet walks. Our #1 Aussie auteur-collecting goddess has posted a couple of pictures to her facebook account including an amusing "Meet Barbie" featuring her camel co-star (which seems to have disappeared from her page? weird or I'd link). Two more films have been announced, one is even an Australian picture, but a lot can happen before movies get before the cameras so we'll wait to anticipate those. 


Berenice Bejo on the set of The Search

Yes, that's a picture of Berenice Bejo above. I shall explain. I was hoping the success of The Kids Are All Right (2010) would keep her in leading roles into this decade but so far she's only had small supporting roles in indies that barely anyone saw. The Face of Love is a lead but unfortunately will suffer the same fate. So we look further ahead. Her next film Imagine is a comedy starring Al Pacino from the very successful screenwriter Dan Fogelman (who is sitting in the director's chair for the first time) but the ensemble cast is peppered with name actors like Jennifer Garner, Christopher Plummer and Bening herself. The Bening is also making her third film with Warren Beatty this year. After 20 some years of development (no one will ever claim Beatty as the Hare in a race) it's suddenly filming but I believe Bening's role is minor since the focus is on two young actors. I love Warren Beatty (both as a director and as an actor) and I've been waiting for him to reemerge for 13 years now (Bulworth was so underappreciated) but since I am not fond of either of the film's lead actors (Lily Collins and Alden Ehrenreich) I will safely be able to keep my expectations way down and just look forward to it as a chance to spot more (presumable) star cameos than a movie has had since The Player. One potentially very interesting project, also currently filming, is The Search from the Oscar winning director of The Artist Michel Hazanaviciuz. It's a reworking of the Montgomery Clift classic but with a gender swap in the leading role (his wife Bejo) as the adult who forms a bond with a child in a war torn country. Since Bening is the biggest name in it, I assume she's got a large supporting role. 


Beauty Break: It's Vera Farmiga. Fan Yourself!

I met Vera once for an interview, and I can verify that she is a vision in person... the startling eyes. the skin. the hotness. the shoes! (she was rocking a pair of heels she'd literally JUST bought before the interview) so today on her 40th birthday let's wish her all the happiness.

And does anybody look better in fanned collars or gowns? Witness!

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