Filmmaker Wes Anderson is back this year with his first live action film in five years, "Moonrise Kingdom," premiering today as the opening night film of the Cannes Film Festival. In typical Anderson fashion, it features an ensemble of actors, though many of them are working with him for the first time. Over the years, Anderson has established an impressive stable of acting talent, a dedicated troupe of personnel that can slip right into his singular world with ease. Will first-timers Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Tilda Swinton, Bob Balaban, Frances McDormand and Harvey Keitel join the crew after "Moonrise Kingdom?" Time will tell, but for now, here's a look at the house that Anderson built. Click through the gallery below for a quick refresher.
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NEW YORK — All the other broadcast networks that presented their fall schedules at Upfront Week are in the process of figuring out how to reinvent the business in an age of fragmented viewing. They're talking about shows having shorter runs, doubling up timeslots to avoid repeats, aiming for niches, and other strategies that would have been anathema 10 years ago.
CBS, on the other hand, keeps playing by the old rules — and keeps being incredibly successful at it. It remains the most-watched network on television, and a healthy second place to FOX among the viewers under 50 that advertisers care about, and all while programming an incredibly traditional mix of sitcoms, dramas and the odd reality show.
"I was trying to think of a clever acronym for our strategy," CBS scheduling czar Kelly Kahl joked at the network's annual upfront press breakfast on Wednesday morning.
"It's called 'HITS,'" retorted the network's entertainment president Nina Tassler.
CANNES - By now, if you are at all familiar with the work of Wes Anderson, you have no doubt come to some opinion about his general aesthetic choices. He has a very particular sensibility in his work, and it has evolved over time, although his harshest critics might claim it has ossified. I like his voice, his approach to character, and his compositional sense, and in general, I find Anderson's films to be enjoyable because I know what I'm getting when I sit down to one. All that changes is the story he's telling, and in the case of "Moonrise Kingdom," I think he's at his very best, energized by the subject matter and blessed with a cast that came ready to play.
"Moonrise" takes place in the days before a historic storm that sweeps through a small island community in 1965, as Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kara Hayward), two 12-year-olds, run away together, sure that they have no place in their respective families and desperate for a connection that means something. Their decision ends up sending shockwaves through the community around them, including Suzy's parents (Bill Murray and Frances McDormand), Sam's scoutmaster (Edward Norton), and the sheriff of the island (Bruce Willis). Like much of Anderson's work, the film is often very funny, but there is a deep longing that underlines everything we see, and in the end, I was moved by what he's saying here, and by the work of his entire cast.
A review of tonight's "Cougar Town" episodes coming up just as soon as my booze cruise turns into a cruise cruise...
More details have been released about the upcoming L.A. Film Festival, highlighted by the inclusion of some of TV's heaviest hitters.
The June event's Artists in Conversation section will include an intimate "Breaking Bad" Q&A featuring actors Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul and Anna Gunn, along with with series creator Vince Gilligan on Saturday, June 16.
On June 22, the series premiere episode of HBO's "The Newsroom" will be followed by a Q&A with creator Aaron Sorkin, executive producer Alan Poul and director Greg Mottola. There will also be a series of panels called Women of Wonder – A Celebration of Women in Animation.
William Friedkin, who helmed "The Exorcist" and "The French Connection" will serve as the fest's guest director. His latest film,"Killer Joe," will be screened.
Meanwhile "Dark Shadows" composer Danny Elfman, noted chef Michael Voltaggio and singer Raphael Saadiq will act as Artists in Residence.
Among the films unspooling at the fest this year are Steven Soderbergh's "Magic Mike," Woody Allen's "To Rome With Love" and the acclaimed "Beasts of the Southern Wild." The fest runs June 14 - 24.
More information about the fest can be found here.
It's been a while since I last saw Stanley Kubrick's "Barry Lyndon." It's a film that demands attention be paid, and I so rarely find that I can sit down and settle in with it. But it's a masterful piece of work that deserves a couple of looks over the years, to be sure.
The Academy is offering one such look as part of its "Member Selects" series on Monday, May 21 at the Lighthouse International in New York City. "Capote" and "Moneyball" director Bennett Miller will be on hand to introduce the film (as "Member Selects" is a series where Academy members introduce one of their favorite films).
"Barry Lyndon" landed at an interesting time in film history. It was part of a dying breed of film, done with a certain magnificence that was becoming rarer and rarer (and, indeed, is one of a kind for the way Kubrick approached the material). It landed seven Oscar nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay.
And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.
It's Upfront Week, which means it's (hopefully) going to be a two-episode week for the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast. Today, we'll be dealing with the NBC, FOX and ABC upfront announcements (plus another "Mad Men" review), while the plan is to return on Friday to discuss CBS, the CW and a bunch of recent season finales.
As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file or stream it on Dan's blog.