Tag Archives: Oscars

Filmmaker Quote of the Day: John Williams

“So much of what we do is ephemeral and quickly forgotten, even by ourselves, so it’s gratifying to have something you have done linger in people’s memories.”
– John Williams, Composer (the most nominated composer in Oscar history with 42 Best Original Score noms)

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Oscars/Academy Awards: The Fixing Debate

Pic taken from hive.slate.com

Pic taken from hive.slate.com

People have all sorts of ideas for how they want to make the Oscars less boring, but let’s face it: we’re going to argue over every new aspect that makes the cut. Something, of course, should be done with the program. It could have entertained spectators, say in the ‘70s, but our attention span has diminished considerably over the years. What’s more, the ceremony is supposed to be a celebration of movies, not a means for power and influence in the industry. And sadly, it is. Ideally, the Academy would let all that go and accept the fact that it isn’t what it should be today. Other than it being boring, it is also politically motivated. Frustrating, I know.

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The Pros and Cons of Hollyweird

Today’s film industry never ceases to astound me. A recap on today’s tweets heard ’round the world.


It was announced that the courts could not in fact ask “The Central Park Five” film team (Ken Burns, Sarah Burns and David McMahon) to turn over any footage about the controversial case due to independent journalistic privilege. I saw this film at Telluride and walked away angry as hell that this important piece of American history was brand new to me. Spoiler Alert: The Big Apple does not come off looking good at all.

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Guess The Right Oscar Winners And Win A Pass To Austin Film Fest


AFF’s Oscar Prediction Contest

Deadline: February 24th at 7pm Eastern Time/ 4pm Pacific Time (the start of the Academy Awards® telecast)

“Try your luck at predicting the 85th Annual Academy Award® winners with AFF’s Oscar Prediction Contest! The top five entrants who most closely predict the winners of the categories below will each win one Film Pass to the 2013 Austin Film Festival. All contest entrants will be entered in a drawing to win a  Grand Prize of one Producers Badge for the 2013 Austin Film Festival! “

To fill out your ballot: http://www.austinfilmfestival.com/news/affoscarpredictioncontest/

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Michel Hazanavicius


“To me the recognition of the audience is part of the filmmaking process. When you make a movie, it’s for them.”

– Michel Hazanavicius, Director (2012 Best Picture/Best Directing winner THE ARTIST)


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Rock the Vote: Help Celebrate Black Filmmakers Nominated for Heineken Affinity Award

“The Heineken Affinity Award is a new platform celebrating and creating awareness and dialogue around the work of ten emerging and established African American filmmakers. All of the Affinity winners will receive an initial grant in recognition of their excellent work. Now that we’ve created a space for you to view and share their work, it is up to you to help us further support and select one of the filmmakers with an additional $20,000 cash award, as well as year round project support and professional development from the Tribeca Film Institute.”

THIS. IS. AWESOME. Seriously. With all the Oscars “Best Director” snub talk going on (Congrats to Ang Lee, meh to everything else), I’ve been a little down about the industry’s repeated lack of recognizing filmmakers of color. You better believe I will be casting my vote in this amazing platform by Tribeca Film Institute.

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Kathryn Bigelow

“I’m drawn to filmmaking that can transport me. Film can immerse you, put you there.”
– Kathryn Bigelow, Director (HURT LOCKER, ZERO DARK THIRTY)

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Oscar-Winner Octavia Spencer Wants To See Your Shorts (Enter By Feb. 10th)


Short Film Competition Hosted by Actress Octavia Spencer (THE HELP, SMASHED, FRUITVALE) on her Facebook Fan Page

Deadline: February 10th

From Octavia’s Facebook page:Here’s the deal: If you’ve shot a short and it’s just sitting around your hard drive, post a link to it here on my page before Feb. 10th. Film can be from anywhere in the world as long as it’s subtitled, and can be any genre. It can NOT exceed 20 mins in length. YOU MAY ONLY POST YOUR FILM ONCE!  Though you may enter multiple films.  The Winner will receive: CANON EOS 60D, Platinum 6000 Digital Tripod and $1000. 

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Another Chance To See “Beasts of the Southern Wild” In Theaters This Weekend!


I think we can officially say “Beasts” is the little indie that could. First Sundance, then Cannes and now 4…count ’em…4 Oscar noms (Best Picture, Actress, Director and Adapted Screenplay). What a wonderful inspiration for an filmmaker coming up today.

So if you haven’t seen it or just wanna watch it again on the big screen, I have some good news. According to the LA Times, “Fox Searchlight will rerelease the film in about 70 theaters this weekend. “Beasts” will be shown in Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Miami and Washington, D.C., in addition to New York City and Los Angeles, where it will play at the Landmark 12 in Westwood.”

If it’s still not playing in your area, Hushpuppy and her friends from the Bathtub are also on DVD. BEAST IT, BEAST IT!

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Oh, Them Oscar Noms!

In just 1 month and  2 weeks… THIS


The only nominated films I’ve seen from the 2013 Oscar list are mostly in the animated category. Oh, and Skyfall and Hitchcock. I’ve got my work cut out for me before watching the Oscars in February.

I have no valid opinion (yet) on which I would like to see win the Best Picture award, but I’ll provide my thoughts anyway.

Full list of nominees here.

Best Picture

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QUEUE IT UP: “5 Broken Cameras” now on Hulu Plus


“5 Broken Cameras” follows a Palestinian farmer’s chronicle of his nonviolent resistance to the actions of the Israeli army. Directed by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi.

It’s a film I’ve heard mentioned everywhere across the indie film blogs (won at Sundance, shortlisted for Best Doc) but never really looked into. Now that I’ve seen all the films on my must-see list for 2012, it’s time to take a chance on the possible sleeper hits. “5 Broken Cameras” is currently streaming on Hulu Plus. Also, the ultimate indie, Michael Moore tweeted that you can watch the film for free until January 6th with a three-second signup on Alive Mind Cinema (sort of like a Netflix site with movies that makes you think).

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Let’s Call It A Weekend! (Hot Topics Round-up)

Unchained Movie Nights: “Zero Dark Thirty”

I think it’s pretty safe to say ZDT is one of the most anticipated films of the year. Here’s what Sean thought of Oscar winner Kathryn Bigelow’s latest war film.

Our new “Unchained Resources” page

Who says you need a film degree to make it in the biz? Here are a few of our our favorite web links for all things indie film. Any others we should add?

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Read The Indie Screenplays That Could Win Oscar Gold

It’s finally here! Awards season is my favorite time of the year. Indie film has never felt stronger to me and I think that there are quite a few little guy (and gal) contenders for Best Original Screenplay and Best Adapted Screenplay noms.

With each Oscar season, it seems like studios are growing more comfortable with audience transparency. This is a huge advantage for us aspiring screenwriters. Now the words of today’s most talented scribes are right at our fingertips. A big thanks to Scott Myers of Go Into The Story  for reblogging the script catalog from Brad Brevet’s Rope of SiliconMy favorite thing to do is read scripts of films that I’ve already seen (LOOPER, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD, MIDDLE OF NOWHERE) and discover the story changes from page to screen.

PDFs of those films and many more are waiting for you HERE. Gotta do something productive until February 24th, right?

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Filmmaker Quote of the Day: Paddy Chayefsky

“If you’re reading through and stop, something is wrong. Cut it. If something bothers you, then it’s bad. Cut it.”

– Paddy Chayefsky, Screenwriter (one of only two people to ever win 3 solo Best Screenplay Oscars)


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Queue It Up: “THE ARTIST” now on Netflix Instant

In case you missed it on the big screen, the black and white silent movie that won Best Picture at the 2012 Oscars is now available to Netflix Instant subscribers. Sean’s review: The Artist.

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Queue It Up: CHICO AND RITA now on Netflix Instant

The beautiful Cuban love story nominated for a 2012 Best Animated Feature Oscar is finally available to Netflix Instant subscribers. My review: Move Night: Chico and Rita.

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Didn’t Diddy Win an Oscar For Best Doc?


This was a question posed by us Indies on evening and even today I had to hunt on Google to remind myself. It is true. While I don’t know if Sean “Puff Daddy/Puffy/P. Diddy/Diddy” Combs is going for an EGOT ala Tracy Jordan from “30 Rock”, but it has got me thinking about the 2013 Oscars. Today’s celebrities have a real opportunity to use their fame for good. Combs served as executive producer for UNDEFEATED, directed by two unknown filmmakers who’d been following a “real-life Friday Night Lights”  story for two years.

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Unchained Resources: POV Docs online

I’ve been reflecting on the films I’ve had the opportunity to see this year and really the most impressive of the lot have been documentaries. Seriously, I talk about “The Imposter” and “Dreams of a Life” on a daily basis. So I was very excited to see that one of the premiere organization in the nonfiction film world, POV, has a library available for streaming. There’s a little something for everyone, from Student Academy Award winners to Sundance Film Festival official selections and even Oscar nominees.

Click HERE to watch 2012 Oscar-nominated short “The Barber of Birmingham” via POV online.

Since we’re still months away from prime Oscar season, I’ll have to get my fix with a little help from the folks at PBS.

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