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Saoirse Ronan as Mary, Queen of Scots

"With only a few scenes at her disposal, Samantha Morton was an amazing, amazing Mary Queen of Scots in "Elizabeth: The Golden Age". Don't expect that portrayal of the lady will ever be topped." -Ken

"Saoirse Ronan is an inspired choice for Mary. But... Who signed off on Margot Robbie as Elizabeth I? What is this madness." - BillyBob

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Entries in Visual FX (121)

Monday
Jul312017

Oscar Chart Updates - Everything! 

The Oscar Charts are all freshly updated (but for the second two pages of foreign film submissions which will go up very soon). It's an exciting time because before the fall festivals hit and while we're still contemplating the highlights of the year's first seven months, it seems like anything's possible. That feeling will soon dissipate of course but for now, (almost) anything goes. Biggest gains this update go to The Papers, mother!, The Big Sick, and Wonder Wheel. Meanwhile Wonder Woman enters several charts, though not with much in the way of current predictions as it gears up for a campaign. Dunkirk solidifies pre-release Oscar faith now that people have layed eyes on it en masse. Taking the biggest hit this time is Detroit tas it gears up for wide release but is proving divisive and controversial. Our initial hunch/faith in The Snowman (due primarily to the director) dissipates with its somewhat generic thriller trailer.

And here's the wonderfully opaque teaser for mother! which might be exactly the kind of thing that works in acting categories (where psychological horror is sometimes popular if the film is a hit) so I've had to boost Jennifer Lawrence up in the Best Actress chart... not sure what I was thinking to so undervalue her previously...

Check out the charts and report back, won'cha?

INDEXPICTUREDIRECTORACTRESSACTORSUPPORTING ACTRESSSUPPORTING ACTORVISUAL CATEGORIESSOUND CATEGORIESSCREENPLAYS ANIMATED FEATURESFOREIGN SUBMISSIONS PT 1

Monday
Jun192017

Dead Men Share No Links

Top o the monday morning to you.

NPR there's a new Marlene Dietrich exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery in DC so check it out if you're passing through or live there. They say it's "dazzling"
• /Film John G Avildsen (RIP). The director of cultural phenomenons Rocky and the Karate Kid has passed away at 81. He'll always be remembered for those two pictures but we have to also thank him for trash cult fav A Night in Heaven as well as launching the career of Susan Sarandon in Joe (1970)
• THR Comedy Actress roundtable with Emmy Rossum, America Ferrera, Minnie Driver, Kathryn Hahn, Issa Rae, and Pamela Adlon

More after the jump including controversy in Oscar's animation branch, Patti Lupone, Captain Underpants, Lambda Awards, etcetera...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Apr102017

Visual Effects & Makeup, the April Foolish Oscar Predix

In looking over the options for this year's visual effects and makeup and hair contenders, one thing is certain: we'll be drowning in sequels come Oscar time. Or at least come 'bake-offs' time when the these two branches whittle down the competition with screenings of clip reels of the work in question.

Some umbrella questions to consider...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Feb202017

Interview: on Jungle Book's live-action aping Visual Effects

You may not know the name Robert Legato, but you definitely know his work. He's been on the visual effects teams of all sorts of blockbusters (Armageddon, Interview with the Vampire) and won his first Oscar for groundbreaking work on one of the most popular films of all times Titanic (1997) before creating the system that allowed for Avatar (2009). Hes' got two Oscars (Titanic and Hugo), two BAFTAs (Apollo 13 & Jungle Book) and two Emmys (both for Star Trek series). Will a third Oscar follow next weekend? It looks likely for the live action photorealism of the not really live action Jungle Book

Though a lot of the particulars of his craft are still a mystery to me after our conversation, I've cherry picked some pieces to share with you that are more readily translatable from our moviegoing perspective. 

NATHANIEL R: Rob, I'm not sure where to even begin with your work on Jungle Book. The big takeaway was of course the animals. Are you trying to put all four legged creatures out of work? 

ROBERT LEGATO: That's really the bottom line cause behind all this. How can we prove that you don't need those bastards anymore!?

[Laughter]

The thing is we're not even allowed to use them. You can't bring them on to photograph them for a study. It's against the rules at Disney....

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb122017

Podcast: The Oscars are coming! How many will 'La La' win? 

Nathaniel, Joe, and Nick discuss the Oscar nominations with just two weeks to go until the High Holy Night.

Index (42 minutes)
00:01 Nomination morning formats
05:45 How much did Amy Adams miss by?
07:35 Cinematography & Score
10:30 Deepwater Horizon
13:00 Which categories will La La Land lose and to which: Lion? Jackie? Hacksaw?
23:00 Denzel vs Casey / Emma vs Isabelle / Salesman vs Toni Erdmann?
30:25 Picture & Director splits. Spreading the wealth. (Remember The Revenant? No?)
39:00 Ryan Gosling & Visual Effects. Byeeeee!

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes. Continue the conversations in the comments, won't you? 

Pre Oscar Show Part 1

Tuesday
Jan242017

Happy Thoughts from Oscar Nominations! 

We've delivered the hot takeaways, mourned the snubs, but now let's get positive. I polled Team Experience about what made them happiest this morning and which category is the best overall. I hope you'll chime in. An unexpected consensus emerged straightaway in their answers. More after the jump...

Which nomination made you happiest?

Tim: Kubo and the Two Strings for Best Visual Effects. It's a great movie that deserves as much as it can possibly get, and also a good reminder to keep our conceptions about what "counts" as film craft as broad as possible

Laurence: Kubo and the Two Strings for Visual Effects. After the Ex Machina win I got the sense that branch was becoming more interested in awarding outside the box effects, so I bet on this nomination happening early. It's stunning work even by Laika standards...

Click to read more ...