Sunday, January 31, 2010

'Hurt Locker's' Kathryn Bigelow and 'The Cove's' Louie Psihoyos DGA Winners

Feature Film Winner: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Feature Documentary Winner: Louie Psihoyos, The Cove

History was made Saturday night at the 62nd Annual DGA Awards as Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win the Director's Guild of America Outstanding Direction of a feature film award for The Hurt Locker.

Kathryn Bigelow & James Cameron at 2010 DGA Awards
Photo Credit: AP Photo

Bigelow defeated a number of strong nominees including her ex-husband, but now good friend James Cameron ("Avatar"), Quentin Tarantino ("Inglourious Basterds"), Lee Daniels ("Precious") and Jason Reitman ("Up in the Air"). Only twice in the past ten years has a DGA winner not gone on to win the equivalent Academy Award. Those exceptions occurred in 2001 when Ang Lee won for "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" (Steven Soderbergh won the Oscar for "Traffic") and in 2002 when Rob Marshall won for "Chicago" (Roman Polanski won the Oscar that year for "The Pianist"). In that time span, it should be noted the last six DGA winners went on to win Oscar.

Many will now speculate that this win along with the PGA win means that "Avatar's" frontrunner status for Best Picture is not as strong as once believed. It would be quite a David vs. Goliath story if "Hurt Locker," which made only $12 million in the U.S. (but was No. 1 in DVD rental chart last week) defeated Cameron's "Avatar" for Oscar's biggest prize.

The complete list of 2010 Director's Guild of America winners are as follows:

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Feature Film
Winner: Kathryn Bigelow, "The Hurt Locker"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Feature Documentary
Winner: , "The Cove"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Movie for Television
Winner: Michael Sucsy, "Grey Gardens"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Dramatic Series Night
Winner: Lesli Linka Glatter, "Mad Men," "Guy Walks Into An Advertising Agency"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Comedy Series
Winner: Jason Winer, "Modern Family," Pilot

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Musical Variety program
Winner: Don Mischner, "We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Reality Program
Winner: Craig Borders, "Build It Bigger Season 3": "Hong Kong Bridge"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction of a Daytime Serial
Winner: Christopher Goutman, "As The World Turns," "Once Upon A Time"

DGA Award for Outstanding Direction in Commercials
Winner: Tom Kuntz - Eyebrows, Cadbury; Tailor, Skittles; Scents For Gents, Old Spice; Tips, Career Builder

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Disney Pulls the Plug on Miramax

The storied arthouse movie studio, started by Harvey and Bob Weinstein more than 30 years ago and then bought by Disney, is closing its New York and Los Angeles offices and laying off 80 employees, according to Hollywood Web site

Miramax was named after Harvey and Bob's parents, but after a slow death from thousands of cuts, Miramax was officially closed today by Disney.

Though it was bought for $70 million by Disney in 1993, the brothers continued to run Miramax with an enviable level of creative control, and pushed their already legendary Oscar-hunting style to new heights with the expanded funding offered by the Mouse House. Among the successes as winners or nominees were Shakespeare In Love, Chicago and The Talented Mr Ripley.

But money was also a constant problem, and the Weinsteins began to clash with Michael Eisner. In 2005, Bob and Harvey left the company, forced to let go of the Miramax named and formed The Weinstein Company, which currently struggles with financing issues.

The loss of Miramax is a shock to the independent film industry, which has been shrinking rapidly as other large Hollywood studios have shuttered their indie divisions. With hits like Pulp Fiction, Sex, Lies and Videotape, and The English Patient, Miramax dominated the American indie industry for years.

A sad day indeed!
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Tim Burton to head 63rd Cannes Festival Jury

Hollywood filmmaker Tim Burton, known for making animation and fantasy films, will head the jury at the 63rd Cannes Film Festival. He says it's like a dream come true.

"It's a great honour and I look forward, with my fellow jurors, to watching some great films from around the world. When you think of Cannes, you think of world cinema. And as films have always been like dreams to me, this is a dream come true," Burton was quoted as saying by

Some of Burton's movies are Edward Scissorhands, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Alice in Wonderland.

Cannes festival president Gilles Jacob said: "It's the first time an artist, whose origins are in animation, will preside over the jury of the Festival de Cannes. A filmmaker with a heart of gold and silver hands, Tim Burton is first and foremost a poet.

"He's a magician of visual delights who turns the screen into a fairy wonder. We hope his sweet madness and gothic humour will pervade the Croisette, bringing Christmas to all."

Burton was a member of the main jury under Isabelle Adjani in 1997. His feature Ed Wood screened at the festival in 1995. This year’s festival runs from May 12 to 23.

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Photo Source: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP/Getty Images

Monday, January 25, 2010


Irish singer Ronan Keating is hoping to launch an acting career - he's planning a move to Hollywood after auditioning for a part in The Hobbit: Part 1.

The Boyzone star is hoping to relocate to America with his wife, Yvonne, and his children this summer as he attempts to make the transition into films. But if his plan succeeds, he may end up having to pack up once again for New Zealand - where Guillermo del Toro's Lord of the Rings prequel is set to be filmed.

Ronan Keating, Yvonne Keating and their children Marie and Jack
Masquerade Ball 2009, Irish Autism Action, Royal Hospital Dublin, Ireland

He explains, "We are going there (to Hollywood) in July, Yvonne and the kids. We'll get the kids enrolled in school there. It may be for six months or we could even give it a year. We'll see what happens. I've done a couple of castings... I've done an audition for The Hobbit. That starts shooting in New Zealand in July so we'd be based there for quite a while instead of L.A. if it happens."

According to recent reports, the release of the two-part fantasy epic has been delayed until 2012.

Boyzone release new single 'Gave It All Away' on March 1. Check out Ronan in the awesome Polydor official music video for 'Gave It All Away' on YouTube.

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

'Hurt Locker,’ ‘Up,’ ‘The Cove’ win Producers Guild Award

Summit's The Hurt Locker took home the Darryl F. Zanuck Producer of the Year Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures at the 21st annual PGA Awards. The prize was shared by producers Kathryn Bigelow (who also directed, photo at left), Mark Boal (the film's screenwriter), Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro.

The presentation capped the 21st Annual Producers Guild of America Awards 2010 ceremony held at the Hollywood Palladium this evening.

The Hurt Locker has picked up numerous critics awards, and two weekends ago it won the Broadcast Film Critics Assn.'s Critics Choice Award for best picture. But at the Golden Globes two nights later, Avatar walked off with the best drama prize, and at Saturday's SAG Awards, Inglourious Basterds picked up the film ensemble award, that guild's equivalent of the best picture prize.

With its PGA triumph, The Hurt Locker now reseizes the moment, although a best picture Oscar is by no means a done deal: During the 20-year history of the PGA Awards, 12 of its movie winners have gone on to win the best-film Oscar.

Louie Psihoyos’s The Cove won the documentary prize.

Pixar’s Up also nominated in the field of 10 Best Picture contenders, won the animated feature award, the highest grossing film of the category.

Mo’Nique presented the Stanley Kramer Award to Precious director Lee Daniels. Tom Hanks and Tim Allen presented the David O. Selznick Award to Pixar's John Lasseter. Will Smith presented the Milestone Award to Sony’s Amy Pascal and Michael Lynton.

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2010 SAG Award Winners Lead the Oscar® Race

The 2010 Screen Actors Guild Awards were handed out yesterday on Saturday, January 23rd. Sandra Bullock won the SAG Award for the "Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role" for her role in “The Blind Side”. With her SAG, Golden Globe and Critics Choice Movie Awards wins and the fact that she is the number one top grossing star in the movies today; Bullock is expected to win the Best Actress Oscar®. Jeff Bridges won the SAG "Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role" for his role as a fading alcoholic country singer in “Crazy Heart” and is expected to win the Oscar ®. Austria's Christoph Waltz for Inglorious Basterds, and Mo’Nique for Precious won in the supporting actor categories and are destined to take home the Oscar® hardware at the 82nd Academy Awards®.

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role:
Jeff Bridges, “Crazy Heart”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role:
Sandra Bullock, “The Blind Side”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role:
Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role:
Mo’Nique, “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”

“Inglourious Basterds”
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture


Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries:
Kevin Bacon, “Taking Chance”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries:
Drew Barrymore, “Grey Gardens”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series:
Michael C. Hall, “Dexter”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series:
Julianna Margulies, “The Good Wife”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series:
Alec Baldwin, “30 Rock”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series:
Tina Fey, “30 Rock”

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series:
“Mad Men”

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series:


Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture: “Star Trek”
Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series: “24″

Screen Actors Guild Awards 46th Annual Life Achievement Award
went to Betty White


Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
(Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Although respected by his peers, Bridges has largely been bypassed for major awards.

JEFF BRIDGES: Whoo! Oh! [standing ovation] Thank you. Thank you so much. Aw, this means so much to me. My god, this is a heavy thing. Whoa! This means so much to be acknowledged like this by my acting family. You guys, that’s what it’s like. It’s like a big family with you guys, playing “advanced pretend.” You know, my mom was real good at that. You always encouraged us to pretend, and it’s like this is just, you know, an advanced version of that. And it especially feels wonderful to be nominated in this great group of actors, with my buddy George, and all of you guys. You’re such wonderful actors. [applause]

I love being an actor. You know, pretending to be other people, getting into the shoes of other folks. Please wrap it up?! Oh man! [laughter] I wish I was – I mean, there’s so many people to thank. Okay, I’m just gonna have to—

MERYL STREEP: Don’t listen to them.

BRIDGES: Don’t listen to it? Just don’t – you did the best one. Yeah, I love that when you just... you know. Scott Cooper, the great director, writer. Thomas Cobb, the wonderful writer of the book. All of the wonderful actors in the movie, Maggie Gyllenhaal, her tenderness, her strength, it was so wonderful to be a part of. Colin Farrell, Bob Duvall, my god, what a dream working with those guys. [applause] T-Bone Burnett creating all that great music. [applause] My dear friend Steven Bruton. And, oh yeah, Bone turned me on to a great singing coach, if you guys need to do any singing, [laughter] Roger Love [sp], he’s very good. He does it over the phone, if you can believe it. [laughter]

And I gotta give a shout out to Lloyd Catlett, my stand-in over 50 years. You know, he’s from Texas. Anytime I gotta do a Texan, I just – and just Lloyd gives me a little Texas. You know, that’s – thank you, Lloyd. And my teachers, you know, in life and in acting: my mother, my father and my brother, thank you guys. [applause]

And my main teacher, where are you, I can’t see you? My wife, Sue, wave your hands. There you are! [applause] Thank you, sweetheart. And thank all of you guys. Love playin’ with you! [applause] [cheers]

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
(Warner Bros. Pictures)

Sandra Bullock is really turning out to be the darling of the awards season. Just check out the speech she delivered after winning her best actress award for her work in The Blind Side:

SANDRA BULLOCK: Oh, if this were only not televised, so I could use the appropriate words I’m feeling right now. [laughter] I am Sandra Bullock, and I’m an actor. And I am...[applause]…so proud to say that in a room full of faces that have inspired me, and allowed me six years ago to say I’m going to stop working ‘cause I wasn’t doing good work, and audition again. And you say goodbye to the money, and you say goodbye to all the things that you became comfortable with.

In 2006, I sat in this room with a little film called “Crash,” and I got to look at the people who got me here. So, to the Screen Actors Guild, thank you so much. [applause]

To the opportunities from John Lee Hancock, our director, who allowed me to step up to the plate. To Francie Brown, my dialects coach, who stayed in the room when I had a temper tantrum.

To Alar Kivilo, our cinematographer. If you saw what I looked like in the morning, and what ended up on film, two very different things. [laughter] To my fellow actors on screen: Tim McGraw, Quinton Aaron, Jae Head, Lily Collins, Kathy Bates, the list goes on and on. I adore you and I’m inspired by you. And to my husband, Jesse, who works so hard all day, and you get dressed up in monkey suits, and you sit at a table with people you don’t know. [laughter] And I leave you there and then you come back with, like, Morgan Freeman’s email. I don’t know how you do it. [laughter] I love you so much, and you’re really hot. And... [laughter] I want you so much. [laughter]

And just to everyone in this room, thank you for making me proud to be an actor, and allowing me to be here. And just accepting me. Thank you so much. [applause]

And when another reporter told her she was now the frontrunner, she shushed him.

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
(The Weinstein Company/Universal Pictures)

CHRISTOPH WALTZ: Thank you so much. A stage actor acts on a stage. But a screen actor doesn’t act on the screen. The stage actor just walks on by himself, but the screen actor is put on by projectionist. Yet we dedicate our lives to our contribution of the whole, and yes in occasional fits of megalomania we consider ourselves worthy of a script like “Inglourious Basterds,” or a director like Quentin Tarantino, or men like Harvey Weinstein, or David Linde, or a studio like Weinstein or Universal. Or partners like Brad or Diane, and back-up personally like Adam Schweitzer and Lisa Kasteler. But after the rude awakening, we just carry on with our lives.

We work towards what can only be hoped for in utmost secrecy. This is what I was granted by working with Quentin Tarantino on “Inglourious Basterds.” For this I’m indebted and grateful to all of you, for this as well. To all of you, including the projectionist.

Thank you. [applause]

Backstage, when asked by reporters what he thought about his “name recognition going up 90 percent,” Waltz corrected him, “99.999 percent, if I may quote my line.”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role

Mo’Nique kissed nearly every actor in the audience before accepting her award for best supporting actress.
MO’NIQUE: Wow. [cheers] Thank you to every member of the Screen Actors Guild. I am so very honored. There are some people that I must thank, that could easily go overlooked. But without these people, this film could have not been what it is. I have to say thank you to Aunt Dot, who plays Mary Jones’ mother. [applause] I have to say thank you to the Each One Teach One Students, [cheers] y’all were absolutely amazing.

I have to say thank you to Lisa Cortes, who was an amazing producer, and who put the work in every single day. And I have to thank the little girl that we called “Mongo.” Her name is Quishay, and I want to thank that baby and her mother for allowing us to use that special gift in this project. Lee Daniels, you never cease to amaze me. God got somethin’ on you brother that you can’t begin to imagine the gift.

God bless us all. [cheers] Thank you very much. [applause]

Though she picked up yet another statue, the actress told reporters she would be celebrating with a quiet night: “My husband is going to play some Madden, and I’m going to watch some television.”

While it didn't attract quite as many big names as the Golden Globes, there was still some fine fashion to behold. White was a huge trend at the SAG Awards. Notable appearances included Diane Kruger in a stunning floor-length mustard gown by Jason Wu, Anna Paquin in a Alexander McQueen reptile print mini-dress, and Kate Hudson in a backless white dress by Emilio Pucci. Marion Cotillard wore a stunning white Elie Saab mini-dress accessorized by runway heels and Chopard jewels.

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Stars Unite in Telethon To Help Raise Money for the Victims of Haiti Earthquake

George Clooney photo: AP

Wyclef Jean and George Clooney worked together to organize participants and funds for Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief telethon presented by MTV on Jan 22. Clooney hosted the star-studded telethon broadcasted from New York, London, Los Angeles and Haiti. 60 countries and 60 international networks aired the Telethon. "Hope for Haiti Now" has to be one of the biggest charitable efforts ever organized. All proceeds from the telecast will be split among five organizations working on the ground in Haiti: Oxfam America, Partners in Health, American Red Cross, UNICEF and Yele Haiti.

Though the all-star telethon was titled Hope for Haiti Now, for most of its two hours, it was filled with tear-jerking, depressing moments, from mournful songs and grim-faced pleas from celebrities to the suffering faces of the quake-battered victims themselves. It took Haiti's own native son to lift Friday evening's despairing tone to one of hope and even revival.

Wyclef Jean Photo: AP

"Enough of this moping, man, let's rebuild Haiti, let's show 'em how we do it where we come from!" Wyclef Jean, the singer and producer, shouted after singing the downbeat "Rivers of Babylon," with a Haitian flag around his neck.

He segued into the joyful tune "Yele" with an island beat, as musicians danced around him, singing the refrain: "Earthquake, we see the earth shake, but the soul of the Haitian people will never break!"

Jean showcased the resilient spirit of a nation in the midst of catastrophe. On Jan. 12, a powerful earthquake struck the already impoverished country, killing an estimated 200,000 people, displacing many more and reducing much of Haiti to ruins.

The telethon, shown on all the major networks and streamed live on many Web sites, was quickly put together by George Clooney and MTV Networks, along with the help of others, to raise millions of dollars for the Caribbean country.

Leonardo DiCaprio Photo: GETTY IMAGES

More than one hundred of some of the biggest names in film, television and music participated rivaling any top awards show: Justin Timberlake, Brad Pitt, former President Clinton, Clint Eastwood, Matt Damon, Morgan Freeman, Meryl Streep, Samuel L. Jackson, Brad Pitt, Nicole Kidman, Tom, Cruise, Penelope Cruz, Jack Nicholson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Will Smith, Julia Roberts, Mel Gibson, Reese Witherspoon, Mark Wahlberg, Muhammad Ali, Stevie Wonder, Beyoncé, Madonna, Bruce Springsteen, Halle Berry, Jennifer Hudson, Christina Aguilera, Shakira, and many more. Luminaries like Steven Spielberg worked the phone banks, talking to donors.

None of the star faces were introduced, with the format focusing instead on the heartbreak in Haiti.

"Hey Steven Spielberg, it's really cool to talk to you," one woman said to the Academy Award-winning filmmaker.

John Mayer called in a $500,000 donation before the telethon began, according to a representative for MTV.

Officials did not have an immediate total for the relief funds raised by the telethon.

Mark Wahlberg, George Clooney and Jack Nicholson Photo: GETTY IMAGES

Some stars like Matt Damon and Clint Eastwood recounted tragic moments from the quake; others like Denzel Washington offered inspirational words. Most of the musical performances were downcast, emotional songs. John Legend sang "I Feel Like A Motherless Child." Kid Rock, Keith Urban and Sheryl Crow sang "Lean On Me." Beyoncé, with Coldplay's Chris Martin backing her on piano, revised her hit "Halo" with new lyrics: "Haiti we can see your halo, we pray you won't fade away."

Clint Eastwood and Matt Damon led a tribute to United Nations staff killed in the earthquake; an orphanage worker recounted how he had turned away 80 children a month even before the disaster and now feared that there would be so many more; a little girl rescued from beneath the ruins sat wide-eyed before the cameras in Port au Prince as CNN reporter Anderson Cooper told how she lost ten members of her family and now lived on the streets.

Actress Halle Berry narrated the tale of Monley, a five-year-old boy who survived more than a week trapped under concrete, curled up in a ball.

"For eight days he had no one to comfort him, no one to tell him that they loved him, and no one to tell him that things were going to be all right," she said, her voice trembling.

"He had no one because the earthquake had claimed the lives of his mother and father."

Madonna Photo: EPA

Madonna provided an UPLIFTING injection of hope with her choir-backed performance of "Like A Prayer." Check it out!

Jay-Z, Rihanna and U2's Bono and The Edge debuted a new song, "Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour)," as Jay-Z rapped from London: "When the sky falls, and the earth quakes, we gon' put this back together, we won't break."

The telethon was broadcast from New York, London, Los Angeles and Haiti, where CNN's Anderson Cooper interviewed quake victims and anchored news clips of the tragedy.

Haitians were able to listen on Radio One Haiti.

A crowd made up mostly of Haiti's wealthier elite gathered Friday night at Break Time restaurant, one of the only still open in Port-au-Prince, and one of the only places residents could watch the telethon.

Owner Patrick Alexis said he enjoyed seeing the celebrities but was skeptical the money would get to people who need it.

"It's easy to do a telethon on behalf of the Haitian people, but who will really get the money? I know my country, I know my people, I know the leaders," he said.

Rabbel Bertrand, 16, who was heading to New Jersey to because his school collapsed, was surprised by the attention on his country.

"I didn't realize all those celebrities knew Haiti. When you talk about Haiti, people usually just talk about the bad things," Bertrand said.

Hope for Haiti Now is available on today. Apple, the labels, and the artists are donating their shae of the proceeds from the sale of the album and any of its individual live perfromance tracks to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, Oxfam America, Partners in Health, Red Cross, UNICEF, United Nations World Food program, and Yele Hait Foundation. Apple, the labels and the artists are donating their share of the proceeds from the sale of the individual studio track, "Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour) - Version 1..0",, featuring Jay-Z, Bono, The Edge, and Rihanna, to Partners in Health. The track is only 99 cents. Your purchase of the Hope for Haiti Benefit will include performances by celebrities such as Sting, Madonna, Ezra, Alicia Keys, Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Christina Aguilera and more. The Hope for Haiti Benefit costs $7.99 at

Check out George Clooney talking about the fundraising event and the Hope for Haiti Benefit available on

The telethon won't be the last major celebrity effort for Haiti; BET plans to hold its own all-star telethon on Feb. 5, with Diddy and Queen Latifah as hosts. It will also be aired on MTV and VH1.
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Source: Pollstar, iTunes

'SPLICE' F--KS With Sundance Midnight Screening Audience In A Good Way

Sarah Polley at 2010 Sundance Film Festival (left) Photo: Todd Brown
Actress Delphine Chanéac as Dren from 'Splice' (right)

From Executive Producer Guillermo del Toro (Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy, The Hobbit) and director Vincenzo Natali (best known for his sci-fit hit Cube) comes Splice the sci-fi thriller starring Adrien Brody (Clive) and Sarah Polley (Elsa). The Splice North American Premiere took place at the Sundance Film Festival yesterday, Friday, January 22 at midnight at the Egyptian Theater, in Park City.

Vincenzo Natali is documenting his film festival experience so you may have an opportunity to bump into him at Sundance. Check out Vincenzo Natali's Sundance Diary: January 22, 2010.

'Splice' Director Vincenzo Natali
Sundance Film Festival 2010, Park City at Midnight

Adrien Broday and Sarah Polley in 'Splice'
Sundance Film Festival 2010, Park City at Midnight

After the Splice screening Natali was on hand for a Q&A along with stars Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley. The first question went something like “That’s the most f—–d up movie I’ve ever seen, and I mean that in a good way”. The 2nd and 3rd questions were pretty much the same, leading to theater-wide cheers. So, clearly Splice had won over the audience reports Charlie Prince of

Here's what people are saying about Splice after last night's midnight screening...

"My guess is people take away from the film exactly the same feeling that the audience tonight was overwhelmed with – i.e. “that’s one seriously messed up movie” - Charlie Prince,

"Fucked up is probably the best way to describe Splice. Fucked up in all the right ways." - Brandon Lee Tenney,

"...a film that is soon likely to be considered a Canadian genre gem." - Kurt Halfyard,

Sun, Jan 24 @ 9:00 PM, Salt Lake City at Tower Theatre
Mon, Jan 25 @ 11:59 PM, Park City at Prospector Square Theatre
Wed, Jan 27 @ 11:15 AM, Park City at Racquet Club
Sat, Jan 30 @ 11:30 PM, Park City at Library Center Theatre

Splice is a meditation on the relationship between creature and creators. The story revolves around two brilliant geneticists (played by Sarah Polley and Adrien Brody) who create hybrid organisms spliced from the genes of various animals. Their research has medical applications, and being young and adventurous, they target the top of the food chain: human DNA. Needless-to-say, mayhem ensues. But what makes Splice unique is that the true nature of the horror is emotional. And the ties that bind the scientists to their manufactured offspring is familial. Think Frankenstein!

Additional Links
Vincenzo Natali & Guillermo del Toro's 'Splice' Premieres at Sitges Today | Clip
Guillermo del Toro 'Spliced': Vincenzo Natali's SPLICE To Premiere In Sitges
Vincenzo Natale's sci-Fi horror film 'SPLICE' opens this fall
Splice 'Sundance' Facebook Event


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Monday, January 18, 2010


The director of The Hobbit, Guillermo del Toro himself, popped into TORN message boards to confirm Tobey Maguire is NOT playing Bilbo Baggins.

Rumors that Tobey could play the character of Bilbo first surfaced last month, but he dispelled them at the time — though he admitted he would be interested if he were approached.

“I have not met or spoken to the director Guillermo del Toro or the producer Peter Jackson or anybody. Nobody has given me a script or approached me about it,” he said.

“I love Guillermo del Toro and Peter Jackson and I certainly wouldn’t take myself out of the conversation.”

Filming for The Hobbit begins this summer, and it will be split into two movies, set for release in 2011 and 2012.

For the latest Hobbit scoop join the Guillermo del Toro Facebook Group.

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Saturday, January 16, 2010

'Legion' Angels Will Shake You to Your Core!

Scott Stewart's supernatural thriller Legion, scripted by Peter Schink, concerns a group of strangers in an out-of-the-way eatery who become the first line of defense when God, believing the human race is no longer worthy of Him, decides to end their existence. This motley crew's only spiritual ally is the archangel Michael, played by Paul Bettany. Dennis Quaid, Tyrese Gibson, Charles S. Dutton, and Lucas Black co-star in the Screen Gems production.

Even ordinary citizens like "Gladys" a cute little old lady, and "The Ice cream Man" are intensely scary and menacing.


Doug Jones as the Ice Cream Man

Look for Doug Jones (Pan's Labyrinth's Pale Man & Faun; Hellboy's Abe Sapien & Angel of Death) as "The Ice Cream Man" (above).

In this Featurette:
Dennis Quaid (Bob Hanson)
Kate Walsh (Sandra)
Tyrese Gibson (Kyle)
Paul Bettany (Michael)
Charles Dutton (Percy Walker)
Scott Stewart (Writer/Director/Executive Producer)

Starring: Dennis Quaid, Kevin Durand, Paul Bettany, Tyrese Gibson, Doug Jones, Kate Walsh, Willa Holland, Lucas Black

Directed by Scott Charles Stewart
Produced by David Lancaster, Michel Litvak
Written by Peter Schink, Scott Charles Stewart
Distributor: Screen Gems

The angels in this film are going to shake you to your core and
leave you with something heavy to think about!

In theaters on January 22, 2010!
Rated: R

Visit the Legion official site.
© Sony
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Friday, January 15, 2010

'The Cove', 'Hurt Locker' & Christoph Waltz Top the Critics Choice Awards

Actor Christoph Waltz accepts the Best Supporting Actor Award
for "Inglourious Basterds" at
15th annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards

The Critics' Choice Awards for 2010 were handed out today, January 15, 2009 at the Hollywood Palladium. The biggest surprise of the night was Sandra Bullock tying for Best Actress with Meryl Streep. In the past several years, the actress who wins the Critics Choice Award does not go on to win the Oscar.

The 2010 Critics Choice Award for Best Picture went to The Hurt Locker. Best Director went to Kathryn Bigelow who made The Hurt Locker. This win makes Kathryn Bigelow the first woman to ever win the award for Best Director, and it was well deserving for her greatfilm.

The Cove won Best Documentary award, deservedly so. Perhaps the strong global spotlight will help stop the dolphin slaughter which has once again resumed in Taiji, Japan. The Cove should go on to win Best Documentary Oscar®.

Best Supporting Actor went to the incomparable Christoph Waltz for his portrayal of Col. Hans Landa in Inglorious Basterds.

The names of all the Critics' Choice Awards Winners are below in bold letters.

An Education
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
A Serious Man
Up In The Air

Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart
George Clooney – Up In The Air
Colin Firth – A Single Man
Morgan Freeman – Invictus
Viggo Mortensen – The Road
Jeremy Renner – The Hurt Locker

Emily Blunt – The Young Victoria
Sandra Bullock – The Blind Side
Carey Mulligan – An Education
Saoirse Ronan – The Lovely Bones
Gabourey Sidibe – Precious
Meryl Streep – Julie & Julia

Matt Damon – Invictus
Woody Harrelson – The Messenger
Christian McKay – Me And Orson Welles
Alfred Molina – An Education
Stanley Tucci – The Lovely Bones
Christoph Waltz – Inglourious Basterds

Marion Cotillard – Nine
Vera Farmiga – Up In The Air
Anna Kendrick – Up In The Air
Mo’Nique – Precious
Julianne Moore – A Single Man
Samantha Morton – The Messenger

Jae Head – The Blind Side
Bailee Madison – Brothers
Max Records – Where The Wild Things Are
Saoirse Ronan – The Lovely Bones
Kodi Smit-McPhee – The Road

Inglourious Basterds
Star Trek
Up In The Air

Kathryn Bigelow – The Hurt Locker
James Cameron – Avatar
Lee Daniels – Precious
Clint Eastwood – Invictus
Jason Reitman – Up In The Air
Quentin Tarantino – Inglourious Basterds

Mark Boal – The Hurt Locker
Joel Coen & Ethan Coen – A Serious Man
Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber – (500) Days Of Summer
Bob Peterson, Peter Docter – Up
Quentin Tarantino – Inglourious Basterds

Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach – Fantastic Mr. Fox
Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell – District 9
Geoffrey Fletcher – Precious
Tom Ford, David Scearce – A Single Man
Nick Hornby – An Education
Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner – Up In The Air

Barry Ackroyd – The Hurt Locker
Dion Beebe – Nine
Mauro Fiore – Avatar
Andrew Lesnie – The Lovely Bones
Robert Richardson – Inglourious Basterds

Dan Bishop – A Single Man
Rick Carter, Robert Stromberg – Avatar
John Myhre, Gordon Sim – Nine
Naomi Shohan, George De Titta, Jr. – The Lovely Bones
David Wasco, Sandy Reynolds Wasco – Inglourious Basterds

Dana E. Glauberman – Up In The Air
Sally Menke – Inglourious Basterds
Bob Murawski, Chris Innis – The Hurt Locker
Stephen Rivkin, John Refoua, James Cameron – Avatar
Claire Simpson, Wyatt Smith – Nine

Colleen Atwood – Nine
Janet Patterson – Bright Star
Sandy Powell – The Young Victoria
Anna Sheppard – Inglourious Basterds
Casey Storm – Where The Wild Things Are

District 9
The Road
Star Trek

District 9
The Lovely Bones
Star Trek

District 9
The Hurt Locker
Star Trek

Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs
Fantastic Mr. Fox
Princess And The Frog

District 9
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
Star Trek

(500) Days Of Summer
The Hangover
It’s Complicated
The Proposal

Gifted Hands
Grey Gardens
Into The Storm
Taking Chance

Broken Embraces
Coco Before Chanel
Red Cliff
Sin Nombre
The White Ribbon

Capitalism: A Love Story
The Cove
Food, Inc.
Michael Jackson’s This Is It

“All Is Love” – Karen O, Nick Zinner – Where The Wild Things Are
“Almost There” – Randy Newman – The Princess And The Frog
“Cinema Italiano” – Maury Yeston – Nine
“(I Want To) Come Home” – Paul McCartney – Everybody’s Fine
“The Weary Kind” – T Bone Burnett, Ryan Bingham – Crazy Heart

Michael Giacchino – Up
Marvin Hamlisch – The Informant!
Randy Newman – The Princess and the Frog
Karen O, Carter Burwell – Where The Wild Things Are
Hans Zimmer – Sherlock Holmes

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"The Lightkeepers" Richard Dreyfuss & Blythe Danner to Attend PSIFF Closing Night Gala

Richard Dreyfuss as “Seth Atkins”

The Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) Closing Night Gala will feature the screening of The Lightkeepers, Sunday evening January 17, 2010 at 5:00 PM.

Set in 1912 Cape Cod, the period romantic comedy tells the story of a lighthouse keeper who has disavowed any association with females, but who must deal with the unexpected appearance of two attractive women who move into a nearby cottage for the summer. The film features performances by Blythe Danner, Richard Dreyfuss and Mamie Gummer.

Attending the screening will be Academy Award® nominee Blythe Danner, Academy Award® winner Richard Dreyfuss and director Daniel Adams. The screening will be followed by a party at the Spa Resort Casino at 7:00 PM. Visit PSIFF Closing Night Gala 2010 for tickets or visit the PSIFF website for festival information.

Visit The Lightkeepers official site for additional information.
Become a fan on The Lightkeepers Facebook Page.

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'The Hobbit' Director Guillermo del Toro Talks About Creative Influences

Guillermo del Toro might be one of Hollywood's ultimate horror film nerds. In a semi-homage to Forrest J. Ackerman (the godfather of all things genre), the director of Pan's Labyrinth, Blade II, and the Hellboy films purchased a second home in Los Angeles where he stores movie ephemera, monster models, and hundreds of books on fairy tales and vampires. Every morning while in California, he sends the kids off to school and heads to his second home to write and sketch.

Guillermo del Toro spoke to TIME from New Zealand—where he is currently directing the upcoming two-film version of J.R.R. Tolkein's The Hobbit—about some of the films that have influenced his work.

For the latest Guillermo del Toro news join the GDT Facebook Group.

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Hollywood’s Top Stars Shine at 21st Annual PSIFF Awards Gala

Jason Reitman & Michele Lee; Lynn St. David & Norman Jewison
21st PSIFF Awards Gala -- Red Carpet Arrivals
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Kicking off Awards Season, the 21st Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) Awards Gala, presented by Cartier, was held Tuesday, January 5, 2010 at the Palm Springs Convention Center hosted by “Entertainment Tonight’s” Mary Hart. Honorees Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren and Quentin Tarantino were presented with an original Chihuly Glass Sculpture designed by Dale Chihuly, while the other honorees received the John Kennedy "The Entertainer" statue.

The Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Gala honors individuals in the entertainment industry with several prestigious awards for acting, director, achievement in film scoring and life achievement. Celebrating this year’s honorees, Cartier Pages wearing their signature Cartier red jackets and bell caps greeted guests upon their arrival and presented awards to the honorees. In addition, Cartier presented special gifts of a classic Cartier Tank Solo watch to each honoree at the Awards Gala.

Cartier Welcomed Host Mary Hart and PSIFF Festival Honorees Jeff Bridges, T Bone Burnett, Mariah Carey, Marion Cotillard, Morgan Freeman, Anna Kendrick, Helen Mirren, Jason Reitman, Jeremy Renner and Quentin Tarantino.

The following awards were presented at this year’s Awards Gala...

Anna Kendrick received the Rising Star Award presented by Up in the Air producer Ivan Reitman

Anna Kendrick
(Photo: John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Anna Kendrick was presented with the Rising Star Award for her striking, multifaceted performance in Up in the Air at the Festival’s annual Awards Gala.

At age 12, Kendrick received a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her role as Dinah in High Society. Now in her mid 20s, she has gone from strength to strength with each succeeding screen roll.

Up in the Air is a dramatic comedy from Jason Reitman, the Oscar® nominated director of Juno. The film stars Oscar® winner George Clooney as Ryan Bingham, a corporate downsizing expert whose cherished life on the road is threatened by a young, upstart efficiency expert (Kendrick) just as he is on the cusp of reaching ten million frequent flyer miles. The film also stars Vera Farmiga and Jason Bateman.

Actress Anna Kendrick notably starred in PictureHouse’s Rocket Science directed by Jeffrey Blitz. Her performance as an ultra-competitive high school debate team member garnered critical acclaim and the film received a nomination for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. Anna was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actress for her work in the film.

In 2008, Kendrick was seen in the blockbuster feature film Twilight. She will also star in the sequel, New Moon. Currently, Kendrick is on location filming the third installment of the popular Twilight Saga, entitled Eclipse.

Kendrick made her feature film debut in Todd Graff’s Camp, a darling of the 2003 Sundance Film Festival. Her performance in the cult hit earned her an Independent Spirit Award nomination as well as a Best Supporting Actress nomination at the Annual Chlotrudis Awards. Most recently, Kendrick wrapped production on the Universal film Scott Pilgrim vs. the World opposite Michael Cera.

An accomplished theater veteran, Kendrick began her career as Dinah Lord in the 1997 Broadway musical production of High Society for which she received a Tony® Award Nomination as Best Featured Actress in a Musical. At 12 years old, the honor made her the second youngest Tony nominee in award history. Kendrick also garnered Drama League and Theatre World awards as well as Drama Desk and FANY award nominations. Kendrick’s additional theater work includes a featured role with the New York City Opera’s production of A Little Night Music, starring Jeremy Irons, My Favorite Broadway/The Leading Ladies: Live at Carnegie Hall, and Broadway workshops of Jane Eyre and The Little Princess.

Past recipients of the Rising Star Award include Adam Beach, Jessica Biel, Dakota Fanning, Emile Hirsch, Bryce Dallas Howard, Terrence Howard and Scarlett Johansson.

Helen Mirren received the Career Achievement Award – Actress presented by Morgan Freeman

Helen Mirren & Morgan Freeman
(Photos by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Oscar® winner Helen Mirren was presented with the Festival’s Career Achievement Award for her large and distinguished body of work. Mirren is one of the most outstanding actresses of her generation and she delivers another fine performance in The Last Station.

Mirren stars in the Sony Pictures Classic release The Last Station, a tale of two romances, one beginning and one near its end. The film is a complex, funny, rich and emotional story about the difficulty of living with love and the impossibility of living without it. Scheduled to open in late December, the film written and directed by Michael Hoffman also stars Christopher Plummer, Paul Giamatti and James McAvoy.

Mirren launched her career in London at the National Youth Theatre, playing Cleopatra. Her film career began with Michael Powell’s Age of Consent, but her breakthrough role came with John Mackenzie's The Long Good Friday, opposite Bob Hoskins. Mirren earned her first Academy Award nomination as Queen Charlotte in The Madness of King George, a role that won her another Best Actress Award from the Cannes Film Festival. She earned her second Oscar nomination for her role as the housekeeper in Robert Altman’s Gosford Park. Her most celebrated role was as Elizabeth II in Stephen Frear’s The Queen, for which she won the Academy Award for Best Actress along with a Golden Globe, BAFTA, SAG and numerous other awards from around the world. Other film credits include Excalibur, Calendar Girls, The Clearing, Shadowboxer, The Mosquito Coast and The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover. Her upcoming projects include Brighton Rock, Love Ranch, The Debt and The Tempest.

Jason Reitman received Director of the Year Award presented by Norman Jewison

Jason Reitman
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Up in the Air is a dramatic comedy from Jason Reitman, the Oscar®-nominated director of Juno. The film stars Oscar-winner George Clooney as Ryan Bingham, a corporate downsizing expert whose cherished life on the road is threatened by a young, upstart efficiency expert (Anna Kendrick) just as he is on the cusp of reaching ten million frequent flyer miles. The film also stars Vera Farmiga and Jason Bateman.

Reitman was honored by the Festival in 2008 with the Chairman’s Vanguard Award for Juno, which was also presented to the cast and writer Diablo Cody. Juno earned widespread praise following its debut at the 2007 Toronto Film Festival, and grossed over $230m worldwide. Reitman was nominated for an Academy Award for directing Juno, and the film earned one win for Diablo Cody’s screenplay and additional nominations for Best Picture and Best Actress (Ellen Page). Juno won three Independent Spirit awards and a Grammy Award. Reitman made his feature film directing debut with the 2006 hit Thank You For Smoking. The film went on to earn a Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture, an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay, and a WGA nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. Reitman was also named Best Debut Director by the National Board of Review.

Past PSIFF Director of the Year honorees include Sean Penn, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Anthony Minghella, Alexander Payne and Ang Lee.

Jeff Bridges received the Desert Palm Achievement Award – Actor presented by Michelle Pfeiffer

Michelle Pfeiffer & Jeff Bridges
(Photos: John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Jeff Bridges’ career is the very embodiment of the Desert Palm Achievement Award, which was created to acknowledge acting excellence, and years of consistent and memorable work. This year, in his remarkable performance in Crazy Heart, he once again shows us why he is considered one of America’s greatest actors.

Four-time Academy Award® nominee Jeff Bridges stars as the richly comic, semi-tragic romantic anti-hero Bad Blake in the debut feature film Crazy Heart from writer-director Scott Cooper. Bad Blake is a broken-down, hard-living country music singer who's had way too many marriages, far too many years on the road and one too many drinks way too many times.

Jeff Bridges earned his first Oscar nod in 1971 for Best Supporting Actor in Peter Bogdanovich’s The Last Picture Show. Three years later he received his second Best Supporting Actor nomination for his role in Michael Cimino’s Thunderbolt and Lightfoot. By 1984 he landed top kudos with a Best Actor nomination for Starman, which also earned him a Golden Globe nomination. In 2001, he was honored with another Golden Globe nomination and his fourth Oscar nomination for his role in The Contender. His additional film credits include The Open Road, Iron Man, Surf’s Up, Seabiscuit, The Fisher King, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Tucker: The Man and His Dream, Blown Away, Fearless, The Big Lebowski, Against All Odds, The Vanishing, Texasville, The Morning After, The Last American Hero and Heart of the West. Audiences can see him in the current war comedy The Men Who Stare at Goats.

Past honorees of the Desert Palm Achievement Award include Daniel Day-Lewis, Sean Penn, Jake Gyllenhaal, Liam Neeson, Nicolas Cage, John Travolta and James Stewart.

Jeremy Renner received the Breakthrough Actor Performance Award presented by Shohreh Aghdashloo

Shohreh Aghdashloo & Jeremy Renner
(Photos by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

Jeremy Renner stars in The Hurt Locker, the critically acclaimed film directed by Kathryn Bigelow that takes place in Baghdad and depicts a team of bomb disposal experts. For his role, Renner was nominated as Best Actor at the 2008 Independent Spirit Awards. He has since received the National Board of Review Breakthrough Performance by an Actor, Breakthrough Actor Award at the Hollywood Film Festival, the Spotlight Award at the Savannah Film Festival and was nominated at the Gotham Awards as Breakthrough Actor and won Best Ensemble Performance.

The role that put Renner on the map and earned his first Independent Spirit Award nomination was that of Jeffrey Dahmer in the 2002 indie hit Dahmer. In 2007, Renner was seen in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, 28 Weeks Later and Take. In 2005, he starred in the acclaimed independent film 12 and Holding and Neo Ned, where he was awarded Best Actor at the 11th Annual Palm Beach International Film Festival. His other credits include North Country, A Little Trip to Heaven, The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things, Lords of Dogtowm, Love Comes to the Executioner and S.W.A.T.

Past PSIFF recipients of the Breakthrough Performance Award include Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Hudson, Felicity Huffman and Freida Pinto.

Mariah Carey received the Breakthrough Actress Performance Award presented by Precious director Lee Daniels

Lee Daniels & Mariah Carey
(Photo: John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

In her critically acclaimed role as Ms. Weiss in Lionsgate’s Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire, Carey completely transformed herself from a glamorous music icon to a forthright social worker.

(see champagne-fueled "loopy" acceptance speech video clip below)

Singer, songwriter, actress, and record producer Mariah Carey has received five Grammy® Awards and thirty-three nominations. Carey began her acting career with a small role in the 1999 romantic comedy The Bachelor and followed with the lead in the semi-autobiographical Glitter, with Terrence Howard. She received rave reviews for her performance in the independent film Wisegirls, which premiered at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival. Carey previously teamed with producer/director Lee Daniels for the film Tennessee, which premiered at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.

Uniquely melding R&B, soul, gospel, and hip hop influences, Carey has recorded the most U.S. number-one singles for a solo artist (18, surpassing Elvis Presley), and is in second place among artists with the most singles in the rock era. She has been recognized as Billboard’s “Artist of the Decade,” and the “Best-Selling Female Pop Artist of the Millennium” at the 2000 World Music Awards.

Lee Daniels’ Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire is a vibrant, honest and resoundingly hopeful film about the human capacity to grow and overcome. Set in Harlem in 1987, it is the story of Claireece “Precious” Jones (Gabourey Sidibe), a sixteen-year-old African-American girl born into a life no one would want. Precious was in Official Selection at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival - Un Certain Regard, and won three awards in the U.S. Dramatic Competition at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival: the Grand Jury Prize, the Audience Award and a Special Jury Prize in Acting, honoring Mo’Nique. The film was also the centerpiece of the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival Gala Presentation where it received the non-juried event’s top honor, the 2009 Cadillac People’s Choice Award. Precious is the only film ever to receive the Audience awards at both Sundance and Toronto.

Mariah Carey stole the awards show with her "loopy" acceptance speech. Chatting backstage at the People's Choice Awards, Mariah Carey took the opportunity to joke about "that" Speech (PSIFF Awards Night's champagne-fueled speech).

Past recipients of the Breakthrough Performance Award include Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Hudson, Felicity Huffman and Freida Pinto.

Marion Cotillard received the Desert Palm Achievement Award – Actress presented by Nine director Rob Marshall

Marion Cotillard
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF

For her Oscar® winning role as Edith Piaf, the Festival presented her with the Breakthrough Performance Award in 2008. Cotillard stars in Rob Marshall's Nine, currently screening in theatres. Originally created for the stage, the Tony® award winning Nine is a musical adaptation of Federico Fellini's 8 ½. Cotillard portrays the wife, Louisa,' to Daniel Day-Lewis' Guido,' a film director, who must find harmony in his relationships with the many women in his life, including his wife, mistress, muse, agent and mother.

Also in December, Cotillard will be seen in the French production of Karim Dridi's Le Dernier Vol (The Last Flight), based on the epistolary novel The Last Flight of the Lancaster. This summer, Cotillard was seen in Michael Mann's crime drama Public Enemies, depicting the takedown of notorious American gangsters John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson and Pretty Boy Floyd during the 1930s.

In 2008, Cotillard became the second French actress to ever win an Oscar®, and the first to win an acting award for a performance in the French language in the film La Vie En Rose. For her role, Cotillard also received a Best Actress BAFTA, Golden Globe and César Award as well as a Screen Actors Guild nomination. In 2005, Cotillard received a César Award for her supporting performance in A Very Long Engagement opposite Audrey Tautou. Cotillard’s credits include the successful French Taxi film series; Ridley Scott’s A Good Year, opposite Russell Crowe; Tim Burton’s Big Fish opposite Ewan McGregor’ Jeux d’enfants (Love Me If You Dare) opposite Guillame Canet; and the French film, Innocence. She recently completed production on Chris Nolan’s Inception and Guillame Canet’s Les Petits Mouchoirs (Significant Others).

Past recipients of the Desert Palm Achievement Actress Award include Anne Hathaway, Halle Berry, Charlize Theron, Naomi Watts and Kate Winslet.

Morgan Freeman received the Career Achievement Award – Actor presented by Clint Eastwood

Morgan Freeman & Clint Eastwood
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF

Hollywood legend Morgan Freeman was honored 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. The award was presented by Invictus Director/Producer Clint Eastwood.

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.

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.

Quentin Tarantino received the Sonny Bono Visionary Award presented by Diablo Cody

Diablo Cody & Quentin Tarantino
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF

Quentin Tarantino's film Inglourious Basterds is set in the first year of the German occupation of France, Shosanna Dreyfus (Mélanie Laurent) witnesses the execution of her family at the hand of Nazi Colonel Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz). Shosanna narrowly escapes and flees to Paris where she forges a new identity as the owner and operator of a cinema. Elsewhere in Europe, Lieutenant Aldo Raine (Brad Pitt) organizes a group of Jewish American soldiers to perform swift, shocking acts of retribution. Later known to their enemy as “the basterds,” Raine’s squad joins German actress and undercover agent Bridget von Hammersmark (Diane Kruger) on a mission to take down the leaders of the Third Reich. Fates converge under a cinema marquis, where Shosanna is poised to carry out a revenge plan of her own. The film is nominated for four Golden Globe Awards including Best Director, ten Critics Choice Awards including Best Director and three SAG Awards including Best Ensemble Cast.

Tarantino made a bold debut with Reservoir Dogs, a cops and robbers tale that Tarantino wrote, directed and produced on a shoe-string budget. Following the film’s success, the screenplays that Tarantino wrote during his tenure as a video store clerk became hot properties including True Romance and From Dusk Till Dawn. Tarantino co-wrote, directed and starred in Pulp Fiction, which won the Palme D’Or at the 1994 Cannes Film Festival, numerous critics’ awards, and a Golden Globe for Best Screenplay. Pulp Fiction was nominated for seven Academy Awards® including Best Picture and Best Director, and Tarantino received an Academy Award® for Best Screenplay. Tarantino also wrote and directed Jackie Brown, Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Kill Bill Vol 2.

Most recently he collaborated with Robert Rodriquez on Grindhouse, which presented two original, complete films as a double feature. He also collaborated with Rodriguez as a special guest director on the thriller Sin City. Tarantino also joined Rodriguez, Allison Anders and Alexandre Rockwell by directing, writing and executive producing a segment of the omnibus feature Four Rooms. Tarantino served as an executive producer on Eli Roth’s Hostel, produced first-time director Katrina Bronson’s Daltry Calhoun, Robert Rodriguez’s From Dusk Till Dawn and Roger Avary’s Killing Zoe. The longtime fan of Asian cinema presented Yuen Wo Ping’s Iron Monkey and Zhang Yimou’s Hero.

Past recipients of the Sonny Bono Visionary Award include Todd Field, Baz Luhrmann, M. Night Shyamalan, Gus Van Sant and Joe Wright.

T Bone Burnett received the Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing presented by Sean Penn

Sean Penn & T Bone Burnett
(Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images for PSIFF)

T Bone Burnett produced the critically acclaimed film Crazy Heart, starring Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Colin Farrell and Robert Duvall, which will be released by Fox Searchlight on December 16. He also composed the film’s score with collaborator Stephen Burton and co-wrote many of its original songs, including “The Weary Kind,” which is performed numerous times in the film and is featured in its trailer.

Burnett’s 40 years of experience in music and entertainment have earned him an unparalleled reputation. He was nominated for an Academy Award in 2004, along with Elvis Costello, in the category of Best Original Song for “The Scarlet Tide” from the film Cold Mountain. For his work on that film, Burnett earned BAFTA’s Anthony Asquith Award. His first major foray into film was his 1999 collaboration with the Coen Brothers on The Big Lebowski, for which he served as “musical archivist.” He has since served as executive music producer, and created hit soundtracks for numerous films including O Brother Where Art Thou, Across The Universe, Walk The Line (for which he also composed the score) and The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.

Past PSIFF recipients of the Frederick Loewe Award for Film Composing include Alexandre Desplat, James Newton Howard, Danny Elfman, Phillip Glass, Howard Shore and Randy Newman.


Other celebrity guests who walked the red carpet include Jasper Cole (The Forgotten), Denise DuBarry Hay (Producer, Shoot the Hero), Eva La Rue (CSI: Miami), Samantha Lockwood (Festival Film Shoot the Hero), David Loren (Festival Film Is It Just Me?), Takeshi Kudo (Festival Film Shoot the Hero), Taylor Negron (Festival Film Shoot the Hero), Steve Pougnet (City of Palm Springs Mayor) Christian Sesma (Director, Shoot the Hero), Jamey Sheridan (Festival Film Handsome Harry), Olivier Stip (Senior Vice President of Cartier North America), Jerry Weintraub (Ocean’s 11) and many others

Following the ceremony an after party was held at the Parker Palm Springs attended by celebrity guests Shohreh Aghdashloo, T Bone Burnett, Lee Daniels, Anna Kendrick, Eva La Rue, Rob Marshall, Sean Penn, Ivan Reitman, Jeremy Renner, Jason Reitman and Quentin Tarantino.

Anna Kendrick and Shoreh Aghdashloo wore Cartier jewelry to the event.

·Platinum & Diamond Cuff Bracelet- retail value = $297,000
·White Gold & Diamond Earrings- retail value= $42,000
·White Gold & Diamond Two Flower Orchid Ring- retail value= $24,100

For additional information on the Festival visit PSIFF.

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