Writers Guild of America Nominations Announced

Along with the Producers Guild and the Screen Actors Guild, the Writers Guild of America is one of the strongest voting bodies in Hollywood. So, when they announce their nominations for the best of the year, it’s usually a pretty good precursor to the Oscars. Check out their 2010 nominees after the jump. Read More »

The Fighter is a wonderful movie, with a core set of impressive performances by Christian Bale, Melissa Leo, Amy Adams and the quiet Mark Wahlberg. But one of the most memorable aspects of the film is the cadre of shrill, nattering and high-haired women who are sisters to Mickey Ward (Wahlberg) and Dicky Eklund (Bale). In a handful of scenes, the women make quite an impression as they provide some antagonistic energy towards Amy Adams’ character, and support the efforts of their mother (Leo). If The Fighter had been written by Sophocles, the sisters would be the chorus.

But who are they? Some of the magic of the characters is that, in the midst of a very recognizable trio of leads (and Melissa Leo, who is probably not as immediately recognizable to many audiences) the actresses playing the sisters are enigmas. Some of them seem like they could have been plucked off the streets of Lowell, MA, where the film was shot. Indeed, some of them were, but one of them had previous experience acting opposite Harvey Keitel in Bad Lieutenant, and another is the sister of Conan O’Brien. Read More »

From the first shot of David O. Russell‘s The Fighter, it’s obvious that a documentary within the film is going to be of paramount importance. And since The Fighter is based on a true story, the documentary in the film actually happened. It’s called High on Crack Street: Lost Lives in Lowell, is incredibly significant to the structure of The Fighter, and now you can watch it online, for free.

One of the subjects of the documentary is Dicky Eklund, the brother of championship boxer “Irish” Micky Ward. Christian Bale plays Dicky in The Fighter and Mark Wahlberg plays his brother Micky. Before Micky’s rise to fame, Dicky was once the “Pride of Lowell,” himself, a boxing contender who went toe to toe with legendary boxer “Sugar” Ray Leonard. However, if you’ve seen either film, you know that things took a turn for the worst for Dicky. After the jump, learn where you can watch the documentary and more. Read More »

The score of a film is its beating heart. Music subtly, or sometimes not so subtly, juxtaposed with visuals can do almost anything from create tension, elicit themes, set tone, link scenes or raise goosebumps. Without music, most films are a cold, dead fish. That’s why the Oscar for Best Original Score is such a big award. Many times, the film that wins Original Score will take home several other awards because great music can make a director, editor and even actors look better.

Now, four of the films expected to have strong showings on Oscar night have had their mute buttons pressed. The scores from The Fighter, Black Swan, True Grit and The Kids Are All Right were all deemed ineligible by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Read the reasons and implications after the jump. Read More »

It’s award season, and The Hollywood Reporter has begun posting their series of roundtable discussions with the contenders. Last month they posted:

  • The Screenwriters Roundtable between: Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network), Simon Beaufoy (127 Hours), Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3), John Wells (The Company Men), Todd Phillips (Due Date) and David Lindsay-Abaire (Rabbit Hole)
  • The Animators roundtable discussion between Bonnie Arnold (producer, How to Train Your Dragon), Roy Conli (producer, Tangled), Bob Last (producer, The Illusionist), Tom McGrath (director, Megamind), Chris Meledandri (producer, Despicable Me) and Lee Unkrich (director, Toy Story 3)
  • The Actors Roundtable between James Franco (127 Hours), Duvall (Get Low), Ryan Gosling (Blue Valentine), Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network), Colin Firth (The King’s Speech) and Mark Ruffalo (The Kids Are All Right).

Today they have posted the directors roundtable, which features David O. Russell (The Fighter), Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids Are All Right), Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine), Peter Weir (The Way Back), and Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) debating “maintaining their vision, fighting with actors and what to do about the MPAA.” It’s great to watch these brilliant filmmakers talk with each other about their craft. You can watch the entire one-hour long roundtable after the jump.

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Filmmaker David O Russell has released a short audio commentary excerpt for a fighting sequence of The Fighter, his new film which stars Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale. Russell discusses how he employed a recreation of an early-90?s HBO Sports camera crew to shoot the in-ring sequences. Watch the clip embedded after the jump thanks to The Carpetbagger.
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A few new movie posters have hit the multiplex today, and are online for all the enjoy. Hit the jump to check out the first one-sheets for The Smurfs, Battle: Los Angeles, The Green Hornet, and a better poster for The Fighter.

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slashfilmcast550

This week, David Chen, Devindra Hardawar and Adam Quigley approve of how various film critics’ associations chose their top films of the year, discuss the trailers for the most exciting robot fighting movies of 2011, praise Community and True Grit, and get disappointed by The Tourist and The Walking Dead. Special guest Katey Rich joins us from CinemaBlend.

You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Join us for our next live broadcast on Sunday, December 19 at Slashfilm’s live page at 10 PM EST / 7 PM PST, where we’ll be reviewing Tron Legacy.

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AFI’s Top 10 Movies and TV Shows of 2010

It’s that time of year again, when all of the critics societies and film organizations name their top 10 movies of the year. The American Film Institute have released their lists of the top 10 films and television shows of 2010. As with most of the lists AFI releases, the films are not numbered in any order, but instead just a compilation of “winners.” Hit the jump to find out which movies and television shows were chosen.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

It’s that time of the year when there will be one film awards ceremony and/or critical poll after another, and we’ve got the results of three to kick off this week. The European Film Awards took place in Estonia over the weekend, and Roman Polanski‘s The Ghost Writer scored six awards, including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actor, the latter for Ewan McGregor.

Meanwhile, at the British Independent Film Awards, The King’s Speech took best picture, while Monsters director Gareth Edwards scored Best Director.  And the Washington, DC Area Film Critics Association honored The Social Network, Inception and The Fighter. All the lists are after the break. Read More »