Ron Burgundy Dodge Durango ad

Though the Oscars featured plenty of product placement (hey there, Samsung), they didn’t spend much time dwelling on the art of product placement in movies. But the marketing-minded folks at Brandchannel have, and now they’ve released their 2014 Product Placement Awards.

By their metric, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues and Pain & Gain were among the top movies of the year, while The Secret Life of Walter Mitty was a particular low point. If nothing else, the list is worth checking out because it’s probably the only best-of list to include both Philomena and The Smurfs 2. Dig into their results after the jump.

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American Hustle Lego header

Even before we found out “everything is awesome” in The LEGO Movie, LEGO movie stuff was pretty “awesome” on the internet. The LEGO video games made new fans, and reimagined posters using the construction toys are fairly common place. Huge trailers are regularly adapted into stop motion LEGO versions. Even so, those adaptations are usually for “blockbuster” cinema, big summer and superhero movies.

Now the gang over at Old Red Jalopy have remade the posters for all 9 Oscar nominees for Best Picture with LEGO. It makes sense for some, like Gravity, but 12 Years A Slave? Nebraska? The fricking Dallas Buyers Club in LEGO? Check them out below. Read More »

Before Midnight 12

If you’re both 1) desperate for some distraction from the holiday hubbub and 2) eager to get a leg up on the rest of your office for the annual Oscar pool, here’s a way to kill two birds with one stone.

Over thirty screenplays for some of 2013′s top films have just been made available, legally and for free, through the studios. Highlights include John Ridley‘s 12 Years a Slave, Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke, and Julie Delpy‘s Before Midnight, Terence Winter‘s The Wolf of Wall Street, and many more.

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Deceptive Marketing 1

Hopefully by now you all know not to trust advertising. Movie advertising in particular can be extra sneaky, as studios who have a bad movie will go to any lengths to make audiences think it’s good. Some examples include editing a critic’s actual words to give them them a positive spin, or turning to Twitter to quote random viewers, passing the quote off like a published review.

The latest twist on this disturbing trend comes from The Weinstein Company. They’re marketing August: Osage County and Philomena (at least one of which is a good movie with solid reviews) as if they’ve already won the Golden Globes they’ve been nominated for. See what we mean below. Read More »

Golden Globes

While most of the West Coast was still curled up in bed, Aziz Ansari, Zoe Saldana, and Olivia Wilde got up bright and early this morning to announce the nominees for the 71st annual Golden Globes.

12 Years a Slave and American Hustle led the film nominations, with an impressive seven each. The latter didn’t get nearly as much recognition at yesterday’s SAG awards announcement, but the former is crystallizing its status as the one to beat this year. Nebraska also came in strong with five nominations, while Captain Phillips and Gravity picked up four apiece.

Meanwhile, House of Cards and Behind the Candelabra topped the list of TV nominees, with four nods each. Breaking Bad, if you were wondering, got three. On the comedy side, Parks and Recreation, Girls, and newcomer Brooklyn Nine-Nine picked up two each.

Read the full list (with announcements still in progress) after the jump.

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Philomena

Stephen Frears‘ last release, the gambling comedy Lay the Favorite, has the unfortunate distinction of being among the worst-reviewed films of his career. His two films before that, Chéri and Tamara Drewe, failed to make much of a mark at all. Fortunately, his next film Philomena looks like it could be a return to form.

Judi Dench stars as the titular character, an Irish woman who was forced to give up her toddler son in the 1950s. She’s spent the years since then searching for him in vain, and eventually gets some assistance in her quest from journalist Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan).

The moving, fact-based tale seems like perfect prestige pic material, and with Oscar winner Dench and the Oscar-nominated Frears involved, Philomena could potentially make waves this awards season. Watch the new trailer after the jump.

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