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Europe’s Oscar Films Span Spectrum From Serious to Comedies

Europe’s Oscar Films Span Spectrum From Serious to Comedies
“World cinema” may be the official remit of the foreign-language film category, but it’s fair to say Oscar has travelled some parts of the globe more thoroughly than others. However much the voting system is tweaked to expand the branch’s horizons, the award retains a reputation for Eurocentricity: in its 61 years of competitive existence, it has gone to a European production 51 times.

It’s not an inexplicable bias, of course, when you weigh up the number of developed national film industries among continents — after all, European countries account for well over a third of this year’s 92 foreign-language submissions, dwarfing the combined number of entries from Africa, for example. Either way, it’s a dominance that is likely to continue this year, with Europe holding a number of the most hotly fancied contenders in what remains a wide-open race.

Unsurprisingly, France holds the record for scoring the most nominations in the category’s history, with 37. It
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Rome Film Fest: David Lynch Remembers Federico Fellini

Rome Film Fest: David Lynch Remembers Federico Fellini
Fresh off of the success of his Twin Peaks revival, David Lynch will be honored with the Rome Film Fest's Lifetime Achievement Award on Nov. 4 at its 12th edition. Director Paolo Sorrentino will present him with the award onstage, while Lynch will be feted with a special dinner gala at the Accademia di Francia afterward.

Romans are already lining up to see the American maestro. Lynch will meet with festival attendees at a special sold-out "close encounter," where he'll discuss some of his previous films, as well as a few of his own top titles. 

Lynch is no stranger to...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Rai Com Sales Chief Mattia Oddone Joins New Italian Production Company Propaganda Italia (Exclusive)

Rai Com Sales Chief Mattia Oddone Joins New Italian Production Company Propaganda Italia (Exclusive)
Cannes — The head of international sales at Italy’s prominent Rai Com company, Mattia Oddone, has stepped down to become managing director of Propaganda Italia, a new Italian production company which has a slate of film and TV projects for the international market in various stages.

These include an ambitious revenge crimer toplining Italian A-lister Toni Servillo (“The Great Beauty”).

Propaganda Italia was set up in 2014 as a separately operated spin off of the Italian subsidiary of global entertainment marketing firm Propaganda Gem by Italian media exec Marina Marzotto who has also served as CEO of Italian distributor Moviemax.

Besides his managerial role Oddone is boarding Propaganda Italia as an investor in the company.

They have plans for three feature films in the Euros 3-5 million range over the next three years and also a bigger Euros 15-20 million project for which they have acquired the script, which is still being kept under wraps, for which they
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Nyff 2017: Mindhunter (Episodes 1-2), Good Streamable Chronological Narrative Content

The first two episodes of Netflix’s Mindhunter, directed by David Fincher, are slightly stylistically diluted but still distinctively his. Fincher also directed the last two episodes of the ten-episode first season, which has already been renewed for a second prior to dropping this Friday — whether I make it to his bookending episodes I have no idea, but fans should at least take a look at this starting point. “Peak TV,” or at least the limited-run series, has increasingly accommodated one director who wants to do it all: this year has seen airings of Paolo Sorrentino’s The Young Pope, Jean-Marc Vallée’s Big Little […]
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

Rome Film Festival Lineup Packed With Crowd-Pleasers

Rome Film Festival Lineup Packed With Crowd-Pleasers
Rome – The Rome Film Festival has announced a lineup full of crowd-pleasers, many out of Hollywood, that span a wide range of genres. The fest’s 12th edition opens with Scott Cooper’s brutal Western, “Hostiles.”

Though world premieres are scarce, they include Japanese director Junji Shimizu’s manga pic “Mazinger Z Infinity” (pictured), produced by Toei Animation to mark the 45th anniversary of the “Mazinger” franchise, which has a global following. Its creator, manga artist Go Nagai, will be on hand.

The closer will be the world premiere of Italian title “The Place” by Paolo Genovese, whose “Perfect Strangers” was a mega-hit at the home box office and has sold widely around the world.

Sandwiched in between are lots of Hollywood awards-season hopefuls, including Kathryn Bigelow’s “Detroit,” Craig Gillespie’s “I, Tonya,” Richard Linklater’s “Last Flag Flying,” Steven Soderbergh’s “Logan Lucky,” and Netflix’s “Mudbound” by Dee Rees.

Other
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Jonas Carpignano’s ‘A Ciambra’ Is Italy’s Oscar Contender

Jonas Carpignano’s ‘A Ciambra’ Is Italy’s Oscar Contender
Italy has selected Jonas Carpignano’s slice-of-life drama “A Ciambra,” set in a Romani community in southern Italy, as its candidate for the foreign-language Oscar.

Executive produced by Martin Scorsese, “A Ciambra” stars Pio Amato as a 14-year-old growing up in a Romani community in Calabria. The coming-of-age drama has been described as a companion piece to “Mediterranea,” Carpignano’s debut feature which played at Cannes Critics’ Week in 2015. Amato played a secondary character in “Mediterranea.”

A Ciambra,” which harks back to Italy’s neo-realist cinematic heritage, launched from this year’s Cannes Film Festival’s Directors’ Fortnight, where it won the Europa Cinemas Label Award. It will be released in North America by Sundance Selects.

The film was produced by Stayblack Productions, Rt Features, Sikelia Productions, Rai Cinema, in association with Dcm, Haut et Court, Film i Vast and Filmgate Films.

Italy last won a foreign-language Academy Award in 2014 with Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Great Beauty,” which
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Warner Bros. Signs First-Look Deal With French Company Marvelous Productions (Exclusive)

Paris – Warner Bros. has signed a first-look deal with Marvelous Productions, the Paris-based outfit launched at Cannes by former top-level execs at Pathé, Romain Le Grand and Vivien Aslanian and producer Marco Pacchioni.

Under the pact, Warner Bros. will have the opportunity to board any French-language project produced or co-produced by Marvelous Productions. The agreement underscores the Hollywood studio’s aim to increase its footprint in local production with strong partners.

“We have a deep respect for the talent and professionalism of the founders of Marvelous Productions, and we are convinced of their ability to deliver quality films that have a wide appeal,” said Iris Knobloch, president of Warner Bros. France.

Over the last few years, Warners Bros. has backed several French movies, most notably Michel Hazanavicius’s Oscar-winning film “The Artist” (pictured).

Le Grand and Aslanian were at the helm of Pathé for 19 years before exiting in 2016. Together, they produced and distributed many franchise-based French comedies
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Harry Dean Stanton, ‘Big Love,’ ‘Twin Peaks’ Star, Dies at 91

Harry Dean Stanton, ‘Big Love,’ ‘Twin Peaks’ Star, Dies at 91
Harry Dean Stanton, the actor with a gaunt, bedraggled look who labored in virtual obscurity for decades until a series of roles increased his visibility, including his breakthrough in Wim Wenders’ “Paris, Texas,” died of natural causes Friday in Los Angeles. He was 91.

The actor was also known for his roles in “Twin Peaks,” “Big Love,” “Pretty in Pink,” and “Repo Man.”

He had a high-profile role as manipulative cult leader Roman Grant on HBO polygamy drama “Big Love,” which ran from 2006-11, and recently appeared as Carl Rodd in the “Twin Peaks” revival on Showtime.

His most recent film, “Lucky,” about an atheist who comes to terms with his own mortality, is set to be released by Magnolia on Sept. 29.

In 1984, when he turned 58, he not only starred in the Wenders’ “Paris, Texas” — his first role ever as leading man — but in Alex Cox’s popular cult film “Repo Man.” (That
See full article at Variety - TV News »

Harry Dean Stanton, ‘Big Love,’ ‘Twin Peaks’ Star, Dies at 91

Harry Dean Stanton, ‘Big Love,’ ‘Twin Peaks’ Star, Dies at 91
Harry Dean Stanton, the actor with a gaunt, bedraggled look who labored in virtual obscurity for decades until a series of roles increased his visibility, including his breakthrough in Wim Wenders’ “Paris, Texas,” died of natural causes Friday in Los Angeles. He was 91.

The actor was also known for his roles in “Twin Peaks,” “Big Love,” “Pretty in Pink” and “Repo Man.”

He had a high-profile role as manipulative cult leader Roman Grant on HBO polygamy drama “Big Love,” which ran from 2006-11, and recently appeared as Carl Rodd in the “Twin Peaks” revival on Showtime.

His most recent film, “Lucky,” about an atheist who comes to terms with his own mortality, is set to be released by Magnolia on Sept. 29.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Venice: Matt Damon, Hong Chau, and Director Alexander Payne Talk ‘Downsizing’

Venice: Matt Damon, Hong Chau, and Director Alexander Payne Talk ‘Downsizing’
Venice, Italy — Matt Damon and the cast of Venice Film Festival opener “Downsizing” lavished praise on director Alexander Payne and his producer and co-writer Jim Taylor on Wednesday at the film’s press conference, where Payne said he had consulted with scientists about the human shrinkage aspect of the comedy, which combines sci-fi and social satire.

“Alexander and Jim are so meticulous when they write,” said Damon who noted that when working with Payne, “every shot that he’s making is going to be in the movie, and you can see how he’s going to fit it together like a perfect little puzzle, a Swiss watch.

“Our job is so much easier with a director that’s so sure-handed,” he added, “because you always know where you are; you always know exactly what it is that you need to convey.”

In “Downsizing,” Damon plays a man who agrees to have himself shrunk down in order to
See full article at Variety - Film News »

How 'The Night Of,' 'Big Little Lies' Bring a Cinematic Feel to TV

The Young Pope, for example, cinematographer Luca Bigazzi reteamed with director Paolo Sorrentino, for whom he has lensed films including Youth and The Great Beauty. The Young Pope was filmed mostly at real locations, primarily in Rome, with the production "striving to reconstruct the inaccessible Vatican complexities such as churches, chapels, secret rooms, offices but also gardens and wide-open spaces," explains Bigazzi. "We tried to avoid indoor sets and stages; only the...
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - TV News »

Italian Movies Are Struggling in U.S. Theaters, But This Distribution Experiment Could Change That

  • Indiewire
Italian Movies Are Struggling in U.S. Theaters, But This Distribution Experiment Could Change That
When “Indivisible” screened for a crowd at Lincoln Center as the opening night selection of its annual “Open Roads: New Italian Cinema” series, it had no U.S. distribution plan. In late 2016, it had screened in higher-profile slots in Venice and Toronto, where buyers paid no heed. But at Lincoln Center, the movie — a seriocomic story about 18-year-old conjoined twins pursuing a music career (real-life twins Angela and Marianna Fontana) — played through the roof.

That was when Ira Deutchman saw its potential.

“I just fell in love with it,” the veteran distribution executive said. “It’s got everything in it. The movie is not a depressing, severe art film that requires people to look at it like work. Maybe distributors didn’t see the commerciality in a story about conjoined twins, but the women are beautiful and the movie is surprisingly entertaining.”

Read More:Ira Deutchman Receives First Annual Spotlight Lifetime Achievement Award

Now,
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Locarno Critics Academy 2017: Meet This Year’s Aspiring Film Critics

  • Indiewire
Locarno Critics Academy 2017: Meet This Year’s Aspiring Film Critics
The 2017 Locarno Film Festival recently wrapped its 70th edition, where several aspiring film critics participated in the latest edition of the Locarno Critics Academy, an international workshop to educate promising writers in the craft and discipline of contemporary film criticism. This year’s participants will contribute essays on highlights from the festival. Here’s an overview of their backgrounds and interests.

Name: Jaime Grijalba Gómez

Age: 27

Twitter handle: @jaimegrijalba

Home: Santiago de Chile, Chile.

Cinematic area of expertise: Chilean cinema, film festivals, horror cinema

Best movie you’ve seen in 2017: El mar la mar

Favorite book (or piece of writing) about film: Bresson’s “Notes on the Cinematographer”

I’m taking part in the Locarno Critics Academy because… I want to think that criticism today still has a role that goes beyond those interested in film or in making them. It has a role in society, and I want to find it.
See full article at Indiewire »

The Pastor Brothers Board Mediapro, Dramacorp’s TV Drama Project ‘The Head’

Madrid — Spanish writer-director brothers Alex and David Pastor have joined high-concept TV drama project “The Head,” a co-production by Spain’s Mediapro with Sweden’s Dramacorp, the Patrick Nebout-Beta Film joint venture.

“The Head” was presented as a project at April’s Series Mania forum in Paris.

A survival thriller, “The Head” follows ten scientists trapped in a mobile science laboratory at the South Pole who realize that one among them is a killer. The Pastors will be responsible for developing the project.

Barcelona-born, the Pastors already boast a solid film and TV track-record, including Paramount Vantage’s “Carriers,” the Wild Bunch-sold apocalyptic thriller “The Last Days,” both written and directed by the duo, and Ben Kingsley and Ryan Reynolds-starrer “Self/Less,” directed by “The Cell”’s Tarsem Singh, which they wrote.

They recently made their TV drama debut creating, and partially writing and directing, “Incorporated,” (pictured
See full article at Variety - TV News »

79 Movies to See Before You Die, According to the Dardenne Brothers

  • Indiewire
79 Movies to See Before You Die, According to the Dardenne Brothers
Any list of the greatest foreign directors currently working today has to include Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. The directors first rose to prominence in the mid 1990s with efforts like “The Promise” and “Rosetta,” and they’ve continued to excel in the 21st century with titles such as “The Kid With A Bike” and “Two Days One Night,” which earned Marion Cotillard a Best Actress Oscar nomination.

Read MoreThe Dardenne Brothers’ Next Film Will Be a Terrorism Drama

The directors will be back in U.S. theaters with the release of “The Unknown Girl” on September 8, which is a long time coming considering the film first premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016. While you continue to wait for their new movie, the brothers have provided their definitive list of 79 movies from the 20th century that you must see. La Cinetek published the list in full and is hosting many
See full article at Indiewire »

How ‘Sense8,’ ‘The Young Pope,’ and ‘Big Little Lies’ Cinematography Overturned TV Conventions

  • Indiewire
How ‘Sense8,’ ‘The Young Pope,’ and ‘Big Little Lies’ Cinematography Overturned TV Conventions
Movie directors and their cinematographers continue to migrate to TV for greater visual storytelling. This season, the Wachowskis got bolder in the second installment of their Netflix sci-fi mind-bender, “Sense8,” with Oscar-winning Dp John Toll (“Legends of the Fall,” “Braveheart”), and Paolo Sorrentino and Jean-Marc Vallée improved HBO’s slate with “The Young Pope” and “Big Little Lies,” assisted by their go-to DPs, Luca Bigazzi and Yves Bélanger.

While all three cinematographers were honored with Emmy nominations, they had to make certain adjustments to the production demands of their shows. Yet they persevered through a combination of ever-increasing tech availability and insightful aesthetic choices.

Getting in Tune with “Sense8

In “Sense8,” created by J. Michael Straczynski and Lana and Lilly Wachowski, eight seemingly disparate people from around the globe become linked through telepathy and astral projection. It’s all about empathy and evolution, and Toll’s eye-popping imagery relies on
See full article at Indiewire »

Artificial Eye co-founder Pamela Engel dies aged 82

  • ScreenDaily
Engel also co-founded UK distributor New Wave Films.

Art-house “trailblazer” Pamela Engel, known for co-founding distributor Artificial Eye and programming London cinemas including the Lumiere, Chelsea Cinema, Camden Plaza and the Renoir, has died aged 82.

A huge figure in the UK’s independent film business, Engel’s death has sparked messages of praise across the distribution and exhibition sectors.

Born Pamela Balfry in 1934, the UK executive started out in the late 1950s as a secretary for then Sight and Sound editor Penelope Houston.

She would go on to work as an assistant to Richard Roud at the London and New York Film Festivals before joining Derek Hill’s art-house venue Essential Cinema in the late 1960s.

Odyssey

Balfry and first husband Andi Engel established distributor Artificial Eye in 1976, thus “beginning an odyssey of distribution and exhibition unlikely ever to be surpassed,” in the words of former London Film Festival director Sheila Whitaker.

Despite separating
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Think Fest: Protagonist, Karlovy Vary, Iffr chiefs on the changing arthouse scene

  • ScreenDaily
Mike Goodridge, Karel Och and Bero Beyer discuss the importance of festivals and distribution initiatives.

Click here to read Screen’s full Think Fest coverage from Jerusalem

The distribution role of festivals and the changing arthouse ecosystem was discussed in Think Fest’s second panel. Mike Goodridge, outgoing CEO of UK sales agent Protagonist Pictures and future artistic director at International Film Festival and Awards Macao, was bullish about the continued importance of festivals to sales agents.

“The distribution system is so dire that these tentpole festivals are becoming incredibly important as the only places you can see films,” he said. “We’ve had many films that haven’t sold widely at all – that’s where festivals kick in, they help to get the film seen.”

Goodridge added that smaller festivals faced a greater challenge as the impetus was normally placed on securing a high-profile world premiere slot, and the assumption that sales would follow then after
See full article at ScreenDaily »

‘Game of Thrones’: Five Theories on Who Will Win and How It All Ends

  • Indiewire
‘Game of Thrones’: Five Theories on Who Will Win and How It All Ends
Game of Thrones” is a show that’s always kept us on our toes, year after year, and that’s truer now that we’ve moved beyond adapting George R.R. Martin’s novels and into a 13-episode endgame, stretched across two seasons.

Now that we know how much time we have left in the Seven Kingdoms (at least until the spin-offs start) the question becomes, what will happen when the show ends? While IndieWire may not have the official answers, we have each given serious thought to possible conclusions.

Each member of the TV team has their own theories, based on their own personal opinions and expertise, but the fun thing about “Game of Thrones” is that anything could happen: The crazier the prediction, the more likely it could be right. Season 8 is going to be a doozy.

Read More‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7: All the Clues the Cast
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7: All the Clues the Cast Could Tease Without Revealing Major Spoilers

  • Indiewire
‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7: All the Clues the Cast Could Tease Without Revealing Major Spoilers
Forget “Here Be Dragons.” Any “Game of Thrones” story should be equipped with the warning, “Here Be Spoilers.”

HBO’s fantasy drama requires all plot details be kept on tight lockdown due to its penchant for killing off main characters, the numerous betrayals and the occasional maiming. Perhaps its biggest challenge was to keep Jon Snow’s resurrection under wraps last year after the character had been killed. When actor Kit Harington started appearing in and around known “Game of Thrones” shooting locations with those signature bastard locks intact, most guessed that Jon Snow would be returning.

Read More‘Game of Thrones’ Star Kit Harington: Don’t Expect Jon Snow in Season 8

“I mean, at the time I didn’t think it was that bad, but looking back it was a bit of a nightmare,” Harington said about maintaining secrecy about the resurrection. “I didn’t like it. I’ve said it before today,
See full article at Indiewire »
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