Saturday, November 21, 2009

'THE ROAD: Dream Sequence' Movie Clip with Viggo Mortensen and Charlize Theron

Viggo Mortensen in 'The Road'

A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and, when the snow falls it is gray. The sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing: just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearing, a cart of scavenged food--and each other.

The man (Viggo Mortensen) dreams about his past life. Watch the clip below.

Viggo appeared on David Letterman last night. Below is a clip from the show.

Time for another Oscar® nom for Viggo Mortensen, only this time he just might be going home with the coveted hardware from AMPAS®!

The Road opens in theatres on November 25, 2009.

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Friday, November 20, 2009

Christoph Waltz Live & In-Person: 'Inglorious Basterds' FREE Screening and Q&A --Arclight Sherman Oaks, Dec 2nd at 7:00 p.m.

On Wed., Dec. 2nd at 7 p.m., Back Stage, The Hollywood Reporter and The Weinstein Company cordially invite you and a guest to An Evening With... "Inglourious Basterds," a free special screening of the film to be followed by a conversation with cast member Christoph Waltz.

The film, written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, follows a group of Jewish-American soldiers, known as "The Basterds," intent on brutally killing Nazis. A young Jewish woman, who once escaped death at the hands of the chilling Colonel Hans Landa (Waltz), is thrown into the midst of a perilous plot involving the Basterds, a beloved German actress, and the movie theatre she runs.

The ensemble cast also includes Brad Pitt, Diane Kruger, Eli Roth, Michael Fassbender, Mélanie Laurent, and Daniel Brühl.

Christoph Waltz won the award for Best Actor at this year's Cannes Film Festival for his portrayal of Col. Landa and is slated to star as the villain Chudnofsky in the upcoming "Green Hornet" film, starring Seth Rogen and Cameron Diaz.

The screening will take place at 7 p.m. at:
Arclight Sherman Oaks
1501 Ventura Blvd.,
Los Angeles 91403

RSVP Required. To RSVP, call 424-203-0877 or email, indicating how many are in your party. Photo ID required for admittance.

As a courtesy to your fellow actors, please do not RSVP for this screening if you do not intend to stay for the Q&A portion of the evening. This screening will be monitored for unauthorized recording. Seating is on a first-come/first-serve basis. A reservation does not guarantee admittance.

Here's a chance to see Christoph Waltz, the biggest Oscar® buzz actor this awards season, live and in-person. I predict Waltz will win the "Best Supporting Actor" Oscar®, and Golden Globe Award.

Reserve your seats now!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

AMPAS Announces 2010 Oscar® Feature Documentary Short List

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that 15 films in the Documentary Feature category will advance in the voting process for the 82nd Academy Awards®. Eighty-nine pictures had originally qualified in the category.

The 15 films are listed below in alphabetical order by title, with their production company:
  • “The Beaches of Agnes,” Agnès Varda, director (Cine-Tamaris)
  • “Burma VJ,” Anders Østergaard, director (Magic Hour Films)
  • The Cove,” Louie Psihoyos, director (Oceanic Preservation Society)
  • “Every Little Step,” James D. Stern and Adam Del Deo, directors (Endgame Entertainment)
  • “Facing Ali,” Pete McCormack, director (Network Films Inc.)
  • Food, Inc.,” Robert Kenner, director (Robert Kenner Films)
  • “Garbage Dreams,” Mai Iskander, director (Iskander Films, Inc.)
  • “Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders,” Mark N. Hopkins, director (Red Floor Pictures LLC)
  • “The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers,” Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith, directors (Kovno Communications)
  • “Mugabe and the White African,” Andrew Thompson and Lucy Bailey, directors (Arturi Films Limited)
  • “Sergio,” Greg Barker, director (Passion Pictures and Silverbridge Productions)
  • “Soundtrack for a Revolution,” Bill Guttentag and Dan Sturman, directors (Freedom Song Productions)
  • “Under Our Skin,” Andy Abrahams Wilson, director (Open Eye Pictures)
  • “Valentino The Last Emperor,” Matt Tyrnauer, director (Acolyte Films)
  • “Which Way Home,” Rebecca Cammisa, director (Mr. Mudd)

The Documentary Branch Screening Committee viewed all the eligible documentaries for the preliminary round of voting. Documentary Branch members will now select the five nominees from among the 15 titles on the shortlist.

I've only seen The Cove (my personal favorite) and Food Inc. This is a great day for animals all over the world!

The 82nd Academy Awards nominations will be announced on Tuesday, February 2, 2010, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2009 will be presented on Sunday, March 7, 2010, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

'NINE' New Trailer, Images, and Smouldering Kate Hudson Song

Kate Hudson performing 'Nine' song and dance number

Awards season is in full swing! We recently reported Nine, a musical adaptation the Broadway production (and loosely based on Fellini’s 8 1/2) went live online. The Weinstein Company has stepped up their marketing blitz and released a killer, dazzling new Nine trailer (below). Rob Marshall (Chicago) directed the film set for release on Christmas Day and already garnered plenty of buzz for a coveted chance at “Best Picture” Oscar®.

The incomparable Daniel Day-Lewis plays Italian film director Guido Contini, who struggles to manage the female relationships in his life. His wife (Marion Cotillard), his muse (Nicole Kidman), his mistress (Penelope Cruz), his mother (Sophia Loren), his costume designer (Judi Dench), his prostitute (Fergie), and his next conquest, a Vogue reporter (Kate Hudson).

The director’s guild just had their screening of the film, which means awards season is kicking in. Spy reviewer Tobby for Ain’t It Cool News posted an awesome review of Marshall’s new musical.

In his introduction of the film, Marshall confirmed publicly he’ll be doing Pirates of the Caribbean 4 with Johnny Depp. Then the film started which the critic calls a “curious delight.” Day-Lewis is “masterful” at singing, Cotillard is “spectacular” and deserves another Oscar nod, Dench is a “pleasure to watch,” Cruz is “fantastic” and sexy, Fergie does a “great job” (!), Hudson is the biggest surprise, and Kidman the biggest disappointment. All this and more according to Tobby the spy critic at Tobby at Ain't It Cool News. I can't wait!

The sizzling new musical trailer for the film features Hudson’s singing voice and fresh looks at the production. Scroll further down for nine pictures of the characters:

Kate Hudson, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Kate Hudson again

Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, and Judi Dench

Fergie, Nicole Kidman, and Sophia Loren

Check out Penélope Cruz's Jay Leno Show appearance and sexy clip from Nine !

Will NINE be one of this year's ten Best Picture nominees? You can bet on it!

NINE will have a limited release on December 18th in New York and Los Angeles and will then go on wide release on December 25. Aeroplan members can redeem 5,000 Aeroplan miles for a ticket to an Exclusive Canadian NINE Premiere.

Ooh La La... Be Italian!

Follow Nine on:
Official Site

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Friday, November 13, 2009

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & UNCERTAINTY Cast at NY IFC Center Tonight & Tomorrow!

Lynn Collins and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in a scene from 'Uncertainty'

This weekend at New York's IFC Center, the stars of Uncertainty - Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lynn Collins, and Olivia Thirlby - will join co-directors Scott McGehee & David Siegel (Suture, The Deep End) for Q&As at the film's opening!

Critics are excited about this stylish genre-hybrid that showcases two incredible young talents, Joseph Gordon-Levitt (500 Days of Summer) and Lynn Collins (Wolverine) in an off-beat indie thrill ride. Stephen Holden of the New York Times calls it "A taut, skillful exercise in cinematic clockwork," and Marshall Fine of the Huffington Post agrees, it's "ingenious and engaging!"


Uncertainty thrusts a young couple, Bobby and Kate (Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Lynn Collins), into two alternate storylines on the same summer day in New York City. A flip of a coin sends the pair in two opposite directions – an afternoon in Brooklyn forces them to confront self-discovery, loss and the value of family, and in Manhattan the day suddenly takes a turn into a break-neck tale of intrigue, suspense and murder.

The entire Uncertainty gang will appear in person Friday, November 13 at the 7:25 and 9:45pm shows. Gordon-Levitt, McGehee, and Siegel will also appear Saturday at the 7:25 and 9:45pm shows, and McGehee and Siegel will appear Sunday at the 7:25pm show, which will screen with Gordon-Levitt’s short Sparks.

IFC Center
323 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10014
(212) 924-7771

Opens in theatres today, November 13th. Visit to buy your weekend tickets now as I'm told they are selling fast!

Follow Uncertainty:
Twitter @IFCFilms @UncertaintyFilm @hitREcordJoe
Official Site

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Guillermo Del Toro's Monster Cameo Appearance in 'The Hobbit'

Director Guillermo Del Toro will put himself in his MGM Hobbit epic. In an interview with German television to hype The Strain, book one in the vampire trilogy, the director revealed that he will play one of the monsters in the film.

Del Toro might have gotten the itch to don one of the costumes because he invested so much personal energy in the monster design process emphasizing the importance of the monsters’ appearance within the overall mission of the film.

Speaking in an interview on German television, Del Toro said the creature he will play himself is “not an important one, just a background guy”. You can see the full interview, which is otherwise largely about Del Toro’s novel The Strain, at the bottom of the post.

Del Toro stopped by the One Ring messageboards to confirm the news. Here’s what he spilled:

"I had a hand on the design of the creature and I will personally sculpt the appliances that will be applied on my face and hands. I used to sculpt the creatures for NECROPIA (my FX company) and I miss it a bit. I will have a line or two and die quickly."

Del Toro has discussed his overall vision for the monsters of the movie with Total Film. Here’s a choice quote or two:

In The Hobbit, the creatures speak: Smaug has beautiful lines of dialogue; the Great Goblin has beautiful lines of dialogue; many creatures do. So we had to design them with a different approach because you are not just designing things that are scary. I also wanted some of the monsters in The Hobbit to be majestic. I wanted the Wargs to have a certain beauty so that you don’t have a massively clear definition: what is beautiful is good and what is ugly is not. Some of the monsters are absolutely gorgeous.

Early in production I came up with a very strong idea that would separate Smaug from every other dragon ever made. The problem was implementing that idea. But I think we’ve nailed it.

Another rumour, also from The One Ring, is that the first six months of shooting on the film will take place in the studio, as opposed to out on location. If true, this probably has some foundation in practical concerns, but it might just be motivated by an attempt to keep as much as possible of the look and casting of the film under wraps for as long as possible.

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandella in 'Invictus'

The 21st Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Morgan Freeman with the Career Achievement Award for Acting. Presented by Cartier, the Awards Gala will kick off the 2010 awards season on Tuesday, January 5 at the Palm Springs Convention Center and will be hosted by “Entertainment Tonight’s” Mary Hart. The Festival runs January 5-18.

Festival chairman Harold Matzner said, “The Palm Springs International Film Festival is honored to present Hollywood legend Morgan Freeman with the Career Achievement Award for his large and extraordinary body of work and his many memorable performances throughout the years, including his role as Nelson Mandela in Invictus.”

From director Clint Eastwood and produced by Lori McCreary (with Rob Lorenz and Mace Neufeld), his partner in Revelations Entertainment, Invictus tells the inspiring true story of how Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) joined forces with the captain of South Africa’s rugby team, Francois Pienaar (Matt Damon), to help unite their country. Newly elected President Mandela knows his nation remains racially and economically divided in the wake of apartheid. Believing he can bring his people together through the universal language of sport, Mandela rallies South Africa’s underdog rugby team as they make an unlikely run to the 1995 World Cup Championship match. Warner Bros. Pictures will release the film on December 11, 2009.

Morgan Freeman won an Academy Award® for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby, for which he also won a Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award® and received a Golden Globe nomination. Freeman has been honored with three additional Oscar® nominations - the first for his chilling performance as a homicidal pimp in the 1987 drama Street Smart, which also brought him L.A., New York and National Society of Film Critics Awards, and an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actor, as well as his first Golden Globe Award nomination. He earned his second Oscar® nomination and won Golden Globe and National Board of Review Awards for Best Actor for 1989’s Driving Miss Daisy, recreating his award-winning off-Broadway role. He gained his third Oscar® nomination for his performance in Frank Darabont’s 1994 drama The Shawshank Redemption, which also brought Freeman Golden Globe and SAG Award nominations.

His more recent film work includes starring roles in Christopher Nolan’s blockbusters The Dark Knight and Batman Begins; Rob Reiner’s The Bucket List, opposite Jack Nicholson; Robert Benton’s Feast of Love; Ben Affleck’s Gone Baby Gone; Lasse Hallström’s An Unfinished Life, with Robert Redford and Jennifer Lopez; the Jet Li actioner Unleashed, written by Luc Besson; and the comedy Bruce Almighty and its sequel, Evan Almighty. He also lent his distinctive voice to Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds and the Oscar-winning documentary March of the Penguins. Freeman’s other film credits include Lucky Number Slevin, The Sum of All Fears, High Crimes, Along Came a Spider, Nurse Betty, Deep Impact Hard Rain, Steven Spielberg’s Amistad, Kiss the Girls, Se7en, Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven, Glory, Lean on Me, Clean and Sober, Marie, Teachers, Harry & Son and Brubaker.

Celebrating its 21st anniversary, PSIFF was founded in 1990 by then-Mayor Sonny Bono. This year’s Festival will include over 400 screenings of more than 200 films from approximately 60 countries. The Festival presents a majority of the films submitted for consideration in the Best Foreign Language category for the Academy Awards, as well as a large number of American independent and international features and documentaries marking their world, North American or U.S. debuts. Screenings are held on 15 screens throughout Palm Springs.

Cartier Hunks on the Red Carpet, 20th Annual PSIFF Awards Gala

The Festival’s 21st Annual Awards Gala is presented by Cartier and sponsored by Mercedes Benz and Entertainment Tonight. Tickets for this Stellar Five Star Awards Gala are on sale now!

Friday, November 6, 2009

'THE HOBBIT' Media Frenzy Begins: Casting, Monsters, Costumes & More Updates!

The One Ring stated in a post yesterday that its trusted inside source revealed a treasure of updates on Guillermo del Toro’s two-part adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s children’s classic The Hobbit. Here's the Twitter version of the highlights.

The Script
The writing team is in the process of polishing the scripts but the "key" people have read them in first draft form.

Ian McKellan as Gandalf in Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Pierre Vinet/New Line Productions 2002 -
© 2002 - New Line Productions - All Rights Reserved

Filming begins early in 2010. In addition to Bilbo and Gandalf (Ian McKellan), it seems likely that Thorin Oakenshield has also been cast.

Work is 50% complete on set and wardrobe design. Fabrics, color palettes and concepts are well underway with the conceptual art being translated to practical applications.

New Construction
Miniatures have started construction as well as the construction of a whole new stage to accommodate the scope of the film.

South Island
Location scouting in the South Island has started. Several locations have been identified as possibilities.

Script Finalizing
The production is actively story-boarding or pre-visualizing the movie before cameras roll.

The team is already testing the animated models of several creatures and doing puppetry tests for others. Design work is almost 100% complete at Weta.

The Hobbit movies are moving forward and right on track for a March or April start date! Read the full story at TORN.

For the latest Hobbit news and updates join the Guillermo del Toro Facebook Group.

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Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'Biutiful' in Post Production

Director Alejandro González Iñárritu (left) and actor Javier Bardem

Alejandro González Iñárritu's Biutiful stars Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men), Blanca Portillo (Broken Embraces) and Ruben Ochandiano (Broken Embraces). Produced by the Cha, Cha, Cha team of Iñárritu, Guillermo Del Toro and Alfonso Cuaron, the film — about a man involved with shady/illegal dealings who is confronted by a childhood friend who is now a policeman — was at one pointed being touted as a feature at this year's Cannes and a potential 2010 awards season player but has been delayed despite completing shooting earlier in the year.

Iñárritu took a break from "Biutiful's" post-production schedule for his Tokyo International Film Festival commitments as head of the jury. We thank him for using his influence to make The Cove screening happen at the film festival! The festival this year has a "green" theme including "Green Carpet Arrivals". The Cove deals with the slaughter of some 23,000 dolphins a year by the Japanese town of Taijii -- and the alleged efforts by the Japanese government to cover up the town's crimes. Most of the Japanese population have no idea that this is going on.

Iñárritu still has at least three months of work left before the film's completion. "Over the next three months I will be immersed in that project and this festival actually [delayed] me a bit," the director said about the editing process. "But the festival gave me a little distance [from the film] that I needed, but [I will] return to post-production and it will be ready [next] year."

Biutiful will premiere at next year's Cannes Film Festival; count on it!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Depp to Play Tourist with Jolie?

If the film The Tourist sounds familiar to you, that’s probably because it has had more people in and out of it than Euro Disney. First Tom Cruise and Charlize Theron were set to star in the film. Then out stepped Cruise and in stepped Sam Worthington (Terminator Salvation) who then stepped back out, citing “creatives differences.” Now Johnny Depp is currently in negotiations to star in the thriller alongside Angelina Jolie.

Depp would play an American tourist who gets caught up in a dangerous situation involving an Interpol agent (Jolie) as she searches for her former flame turned criminal.

The Tourist is a remake of the 2005 French film Anthony Zimmer, which starred Sophie Marceau (Braveheart). The director position has exchanged hands more than a few times as well, going from Bharat Nalluri (The Crow: Salvation) to Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (The Lives of Others). Now it is rumored that Alfonso Cuaron (Children of Men) is interested in taking on the project.

The film has also had its fair share of writers, starting with Julian Fellowes (Vanity Fair) who wrote the original script before Christopher McQuarrie (Usual Suspects) and Jeffrey Nachmanoff (The Day After Tomorrow) were brought in for rewrites.

The teaming up of Alfonso Cuaron, Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie would be stellar! I can hardly wait!

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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin to Co-hosts the 82nd Academy Awards®

Oscar telecast producers Bill Mechanic and Adam Shankman were quoted in a joint statement saying, "We think the team of Steve and Alec are the perfect pair of hosts for the Oscars. Steve will bring the experience of having hosted the show in the past and Alec will be a completely fresh personality for this event."

I am happy to co-host the Oscars with my enemy Alec Baldwin,” said Martin.

“I don’t play the banjo but I’m thrilled to be hosting the Oscars – it’s the opportunity of a lifetime,” said Baldwin.

Steve Martin
Martin hosted the 73rd and 75th Academy Awards shows, earning an Emmy nomination for the first stint. He has also served as a presenter on the show several times, most recently at the ceremony in February when he appeared with Tina Fey. He is currently touring with the bluegrass band Steep Canyon Rangers in support of his latest album “The Crow: New Songs for the Five String Banjo.” In 1977 and 1978 Martin won Grammys for Best Comedy Recording. He earned a third Grammy in 2001 in the Best Country Instrumental Performance category. In 2007 Martin earned a Kennedy Center Honor.

Alec Baldwin
Baldwin was nominated for an Academy Award in 2003 for his supporting role in “The Cooler.” That year also marked his most recent appearance as a presenter on the show. Baldwin currently stars as Jack Donaghy on the comedy “30 Rock,” a role for which he has won two Emmys (in 2008 and 2009). Baldwin earned a Tony nomination in 1992 for his performance in “A Streetcar Named Desire.”

'The Road' LA Screening with Viggo Mortensen on Nov 9th!

Join Back Stage on Monday, November 9 for a Los Angeles screening of the new film The Road, starring Viggo Mortensen, who will hold a Q&A immediately afterward.

The Road is based on a novel by Cormac McCarthy, author of "No Country For Old Men." In it, a father (Mortensen) must ensure the survival of his wife (Charlize Theron) and son in a post-apocalyptic wasteland where it appears almost all over humankind has vanished.

Mortensen's credits include "A History Of Violence" and "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. He was nominated for an Academy Award in 2008 for his portrayal of the Russian mobster Nikolai in director David Cronenberg's "Eastern Promises."

Another Oscar® nomination for Mortensen? Absolutely! We'll be keeping a close eye on Viggo now that Awards Season is in full swing.

The screening will take place at 8 p.m. at:
The Landmark Theatre
1080 West Pico Blvd.
(free parking -- enter on Westwood Blvd. or Pico Blvd.)

To RSVP, please send an email to: Send your full name and please indicate if you plan to bring a guest. A reservation does not guarantee admittance.

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Monday, November 2, 2009

Matt Reeves' Horror Remake 'Let Me In' Cast Update

Principal photography began today on Let Me In, writer/director Matt Reeves' adaptation of Let the Right One In, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Reeves (Cloverfield) and young stars Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road) and Chloe Moretz ((500) Days of Summer) were among those on-set as filming commenced on the Hammer Films production at Albuquerque Studios. Filming will also take place in various other locations in New Mexico before returning to Albuquerque to wrap in January.

In the haunting and provocative Let Me In, an alienated 12-year-old boy (Smit-McPhee) befriends a mysterious young newcomer (Moretz) in his small New Mexico town and discovers an unconventional path to adulthood. The film is based on the bestselling vampire novel, Lat den Ratte Komma In, by Swedish author John Ajvide Lindqvist, and is an English-language remake of the highly acclaimed Swedish film of the same name.

The filmmakers note that while the new film will pay respect to the original Swedish version, they intend to forge a unique identity for Let Me In, placing it firmly in an American context.

"This project is very personal to Matt as it is to the many passionate fans of the original story," said Simon Oaks, President and CEO of Hammer Films. "The brilliance of that story deserves to be seen by audiences on a wide sale and we are excited that the pieces are in place to make that a reality."

Updates to the cast list include Elias Koteas (Shutter Island) as the policeman, Cara Buono (The Sopranos) as Owen's mother and Sasha Barrese (The Hangover) as "Virginia". It was previously announced that Smit-Mcphee and Moretz would play the leads "Owen" and "Abby" respectively and Oscar®-nominee Richard Jenkins (The Visitor) would play the guardian of "Abby".

Let Me In is the first in a two-picture co-production, financing and distribution agreement between Overture Films and Exclusive Media Group, the parent company of Hammer Films and Spitfire Pictures. The production is sched for a 2010 release in the U.S. by Overture Films.