BEVERLY HILLS -- For many on the circuit this season, the fall months have brought the bulk of the PR work, the glad-handing, the face-time. For a guy like Richard Gere, who stars in Nicholas Jarecki's "Arbitrage" and picked up a Golden Globe nomination this morning for his work in the film, it's been a much longer road.
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We save the music categories to the end to analyze for two reasons. One is that it helps to have heard the music. While it obviously helps to have seen any contender before opining on its chances, I find that listening to the music is one that really cannot be compromised. It is easier to guess what the costumes or cinematography of a movie might be like. It's also nice to have the list of qualifying scores at the ready.
The second reason is that composers themselves are usually brought on to the films quite late. After the actors, writers, cinematographer, production designer and costume designer have all gone home, the composer is left by him or herself, watching a movie he or she had no part of shooting.
Bernard Herrmann‘s brief appearance in “Hitchcock” was, alongside the ending, my favorite scene in the movie. It also showed two very important aspects of film composing. First, it showed how composing is lonely, painstaking work with no one to keep you company save for the occasional appearance by the producer, editor, sound mixer or, most likely, the director. But second, when done well, film music can become iconic. From “Star Wars” to “Lawrence of Arabia” to “Gone with the Wind” to, yes, “Psycho,” many themes are simply unforgettable. They can also create mood and atmosphere.
U.K. singer Jessie Ware's full-length "Devotion" was enough to propel her hot song "110%" onto the radar in the U.S., earning her a deal with Cherrytree, who's prepped her new EP for a re-introduction.
"110%" is getting renamed "If You're Never Gonna Move" (due to clearance issues) but "Sweet Talk" from "Devotion" is keeping its name as it's dropped as the new single. The vieo to it gets an equally sweet video release, below, as children play the part of Ware, her producer and her backers. Just watch out for the 360-deals, kiddo.
Ware's playing in Los Angeles tonight and will be touring the U.S. again in January.
"Great last week, man," Sony Pictures Classics co-president Michael Barker exclaims when he hops on the phone to discuss the Golden Globe nominations for his company's films, "Amour" and "Rust and Bone." "Between Marion Cotillard getting nominations for SAG and Golden Globes and Emmanuelle Riva winning all those prizes from critics groups, and then 'Amour' winning Best Picture with LA film critics, 'Gatekeepers' and 'Searching for Sugar Man' chugging along, we're feeling pretty good."
Well, no need to report the facts. There they are. And it's good to be positive, because while these accolades have been great, the fact is Michael Haneke's "Amour" has had a bumpy day and a half. Particularly for star Emmanuelle Riva, who, while lauded by critics groups this season, failed to grab a notice from either the Screen Actors Guild or Hollywood Foreign Press Association (though she was remembered, among five other co-nominees, by the Broadcast Film Critics Association on Tuesday). Barker's not too glum about that, though. In fact, he says it was to be expected.
It may not get as much press as the sexier (and more summery) Cannes and Venice fests, but the Berlin Film Festival has quietly launched a number of major world cinema titles in recent years. Last year, "A Separation" began its golden run with a Berlinale premiere. This year, if you look down the list of 71 foreign-language Oscar hopefuls, you'll spot more Berlin titles than Cannes ones: "A Royal Affair," "Barbara," "Sister," "War Witch" and "Caesar Must Die" among them. (All that, and the festival introduced us to "Tabu" too.)
Still, while the festival is a must for aficionados of international film, it struggles to secure the A-list auteur fare and Hollywood fodder that would ensure broader media and public interest. Which is why, by their standards, nabbing the world premiere of DreamWorks Animation's "The Croods," over a month ahead of its March 2013 release, represents a pretty big get.
With both Adele and Taylor Swift in the running, the Golden Globe best original song slate looks more like a rundown of artists normally found on the Billboard Hot 100. (By the way, today is Swift's 23rd birthday: Nice birthday present, Hollywood Foreign Press Assn.!)
Other than nominating “Suddenly,” a new song written for “Les Miserables” to give the musical a Golden Globe and Oscar contender, the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. has turned to tunes written and performed by some of the biggest names in pop music to fill the slate.
The nominees are:
*"For You"— "Act of Valor" (performed by Keith Urban)
Music and lyrics by Monty Powell and Keith Urban
*"Not Running Anymore" — "Stand Up Guys" (performed by Jon Bon Jovi)
Music and lyrics by Jon Bon Jovi
*"Safe & Sound" — "The Hunger Games" (performed by Taylor Swift and The Civil Wars)
Music and lyrics by: Taylor Swift, John Paul White, Joy Williams, T Bone Burnett
*“Skyfall” (performed by Adele)
Music and lyrics by: Adele and Paul Epworth
*"Suddenly)" — "Les Miserables" (performed by Hugh Jackman)
Music by: Claude-Michel Schonberg; Lyrics by: Alain Boublil, Claude-Michel Schonberg
The pop slant is nothing particularly new, as the Globes often tend to sway toward big pop names (some deserving, some merely selected for star power) more than songs penned by traditional film composers. (Hello, remember Madonna's "Masterpiece" won last year). In this case though, there's not a dud in the bunch.
No offense to the gentlemen, but this year’s race is between the ladies: Swift and Adele. Adele’s Bond theme, “Skyfall,” is sweeping and dramatic and pays homage to the original Bond theme. Swift’s haunting, atmospheric "Safe & Sound" is groundbreaking in that it paired the teen pop/country queen with the Civil Wars, which gave her a new depth, while creating a song that deeply resonated with "Hunger Games" fans.
A slight caveat before we totally write off the men: it’s important to remember that Bon Jovi is the only one here who has actually won a Golden Globe for best original song: he won in 1990 for the title tune to “Blaze Of Glory.”
There are some notable omissions, including any of the possible contenders from “Django Unchained,” as well as any tunes from an animated feature, such as “Learn Me Right” by Birdy and Mumford & Sons from “Brave.”
The voters also stayed away from Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake,” which was the biggest chart hit among the potential contenders, peaking at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Fellow pop stars Florence & The Machine were also ignored for “Breath of Life” from “Snow White and the Huntsman.”
And as far as these nominations being any predictor of names we’ll see again come the Oscar nominations on Jan. 10? Don’t bet on it. For the last eight years, other than “Crazy Heart’s” “The Weary Kind,” the Golden Globe winner for Best Original Song has not even been an Oscar nominee.
The first thought that jumped to mind after today's Golden Globe nominations announcement was, "Not too embarrassing." Often enough awards watchers are looking to the HFPA to do what they do, fill out their list with dubious performances from movie stars and films that will guarantee a glitzy red carpet. And there's a little of that here, though in most cases, it's not as simple as that.
Richard Gere, for instance, gives one of his best performances to date in "Arbitrage," so it's a great excuse for HFPA to include him, and for quality work, thank God. Nicole Kidman's nomination for "The Paperboy" might have been dismissed as star-loving madness, too, except the Screen Actors Guild chalked her up for a nomination yesterday (and I have no idea what's going on there). And the lead actress, drama field could have been an excuse to shove in Halle Berry or something, but the group went with NYFCC-winner Rachel Weisz.
I ordinarily like to begin my analysis of the Golden Globe TV nominations by going on at length about the sketchiness of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and their complete disinterest in and lack of qualification for making any kind of judgment of American television.
This year, though, I think all I need to tell you is the following:
The Las Vegas Film Critics Society announced their picks yesterday, and clearly liked "Life of Pi" a lot more than most of their peers thus far: Ang Lee's effects-heavy spectacular took six awards, including Best Picture, Best Director and a Youth In Film citation for Suraj Sharma. They're the first group to celebrate the film, though they went a little more by-the-book for their acting picks. Further down, I'm liking the "Prometheus" call for Production Design. Check out the full list of winners after the jump, and catch up with the season thus far at The Circuit.
In what was the worst-kept secret on 12-12-12, Paul McCartney did indeed take the stage with the surviving members of Nirvana for the Sandy charity concert. However, fans of the Beatles star or of Dave Grohl, Pat Smear and Krist Novoselic may not recognize the song they played together.
The track is called "Cut Me Some Slack," and was apparently created during a collaboration for Grohl's forthcoming documentary "Sound City." It's definitely a mix of penchant McCartney melody, a heavy rhythm section( just like the Foos frontman likes it) and a heavy dose of that grunge music the kids are always talking about.
Immediately following the rather impressive performance from the quartet, the "Sound City" Twitter account and website released a short clip of audio from the recording, made in California studio after which the film is named. You can hear it below.
She's won an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, a BAFTA and two Cesars, but Marion Cotillard still sounded genuinely excited about landing her fourth Screen Actors Guild Awards nomination. The "Rust and Bone" star phoned from Paris to have a quick chat about her SAG honor, a strong indicator she'll be walking the red carpet at the Dolby Theater this February.