Gravity

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts unveiled the winners of their 2014 awards this weekend, just two weeks ahead of the Academy Awards. The biggest winner of the night was Gravity, which took home six awards, but Best Film remained out of Alfonso Cuarón‘s grasp. That prize went instead to 12 Years a Slave, which secured only one other win last night, for lead actor Chiwetel Ejiofor.

Elsewhere, American Hustle, widely considered this season’s other Best Picture frontrunner, nabbed three prizes including one for supporting actress Jennifer Lawrence. The corresponding male category offered perhaps the biggest surprise of the night — a win for Captain Phillips‘ Barkhad Abdi, who beat out the likes of Bradley Cooper and Michael Fassbender

Hit the jump for the list of winners.

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Alfonso Cuaron Gravity

Best director Oscar nominee Alfonso Cuaron did a Reddit AMA Thursday, promoting his film Gravity, which is still in theaters and hits Blu-ray February 25. As tends to be the case with these, topics were all over the map, and we’ve grabbed the most interesting bits.

Among them are an alternate ending to Gravity, how he felt about scientific criticism directed toward the film, his outlook on the future of cinema, his feelings on digital formats, if he’d do a superhero movie, why he only did one Harry Potter, Guillermo del Toro’s contributions to Gravity and much more. Read the quotes below. Read More »

Alfonso Cuaron shooting Children of Men

The Directors Guild of America handed out its awards tonight for directorial achievement in 2013. Alfonso Cuarón took the top prize, Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film, for his work on Gravity. That all but locks him in as the Best Director Oscar winner. Steven Soderbergh won as best director of a TV movie or mini-series for Behind the Candelabra, and Vince Gilligan won the award for direction in a dramatic series for the Breaking Bad episode ‘Felina,’ beating out fellow Breaking Bad nominee Bryan Cranston, and also David Fincher, who was nominated for the pilot of House of Cards.

Read the full list of winners below. Read More »

12-Years-a-Slave-Steve-McQueen

Who will be nominated for the Best Director Oscar this year? We’ve got a pretty good idea now that the nominations for the Directors Guild of America’s own awards have been handed down. Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave), Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity), David O. Russell (American Hustle), Martin Scorsese (The Wolf of Wall Street) and Paul Greengrass (Captain Philips) have been honored with nominations for the 66th DGA award. Three of those (McQueen, Cuaron, Greengrass) are first-time DGA nominations.

Historically, this nomination set is a very good predictor of where the Oscars will go, but last year was a bit of a tradition breaker, as only two of the five DGA nominees got Oscar nominations, and the DGA winner, Ben Affleck, was not among them. (Ang Lee won the Oscar.)

Meanwhile, this is another major guild that has looked past Joel and Ethan Coen and Inside Llewyn Davis; Spike Jonze is another director of significant achievement in 2013 who didn’t get a nomination. 

The full list of feature directorial nominations is below, with accompanying notes from the DGA. Read More »

gravity-header-11

The story of Alfonso Cuarón‘s efforts to create Gravity are already big for everyone interested in filmmaking — we know the movie utilized an intense blend of CG imagery and footage captured on stark stages, but there’s a lot more we don’t know about the making of the film. A five-minute clip of behind the scenes info isn’t going to tell us everything, but this new “script to screen” featurette on Gravity is a good start as it explores the intersection between the script from Alfonso and Jonas Cuarón, the elder Cuarón’s direction, and the work of cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki. Read More »

‘The Act of Killing’ Tops Sight & Sound 2013 Poll

act-of-killing-trailer-header

End of year lists can be great for highlighting stuff you may have missed, and the annual poll from UK film magazine Sight & Sound, one of the first 2013 year-end lists out of the gate, has a number of films included that are worth tracking down. The magazine polls over 100 “international critics, curators and academics,” taking a top-five list from each. The magazine’s list of top films (with some tied for a couple berths) is generated from those votes.

Documentary The Act of Killing, which follows as men responsible for genocidal killings in Indonesia confront and recreate their crimes as film scenes, took first place by a margin of five votes. Gravity and Blue is the Warmest Colour are the second and third place choices.

The full list is below, complete with trailers for each film, so you can be introduced to whatever films on the list are unfamiliar. Read More »

Fast and Furious 7 - Paul Walker, Tyrese Gibson, Vin Diesel

Whether you want to read Keanu Reeves‘ regrets about the (non-existent) Constantine sequel, Robert Englund‘s hopes for a (theoretical) Elm Street prequel, or Alfonso Cuaron‘s thoughts on the Harry Potter spinoff, there’s a little something for everyone here. Also after the jump:

  • Gareth Evans breaks down the trailer for The Raid 2: Berandal
  • Michael Bay hints at a big theme from Transformers 4
  • Steven Spielberg gets a bit political while in Hawaii for Jurassic World
  • See more pics of Vin Diesel on the set of Fast & Furious 7
  • The 300: Rise of an Empire site offers new pics and footage

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THR-directors

As we mentioned a few days ago, one of the great pleasures of the award season, which does arrive each year with a grand set of problems and irritants, is that filmmakers are given more opportunities than usual to discuss their work, and some of those opportunities are more extensive than others. THR has created a series of “creative roundtables” over the past few years, in which likely Oscar candidates talk with each other about their work.

Below you’ll find the new directors roundtable, in which Steve McQueen, Paul Greengrass, David O. Russell, Ben Stiller, Alfonso Cuaron and Lee Daniels discuss all manner of topics related to filmmaking. Make time for the 50-minute talk; it’s very much worth it. Read More »

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