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When you think of contemporary filmmakers who are particularly keyed into the art of costume design, you might name Baz Luhrmann, Tarsem Singh or Xavier Dolan -- but Judd Apatow probably wouldn't be among the first names to come to mind.
Given the Academy's bent for in-the-moment sentiment in that department, the list of Best Documentary Feature Oscar winners that have since become consensus classics is a relatively short one. (In a number of cases, the winners don't even seem a particularly good idea at the time.) But one noble exception is Barbara Kopple's 1976 film "Harlan County, USA," a stark, penetrating portrait of the 1972 Brookside coal miners' strike that still stands as the signature work of one of America's foremost documentarians. It's the rare film that has broken out of the non-fiction ghetto and into the Criterion-approved cinematic canon.
From "Saving Mr. Banks" to "The Hobbit" to "The Wolf of Wall Street," the fortnight between December 12 and Christmas Day finds a dozen films going into wide release in the US. Ben Fritz wonders if the holiday box office is being overloaded: "With several days off of work or school, if not a full week, many people are free to see multiple movies at any time of the day ... Nonetheless people's movie time isn't infinite, and a surfeit of new titles could overtax even the most avid moviegoers." Unlike the summer tentpole glut, he notes, it's many adult-oriented fare that is filling theaters. Will there be any casualties? [Wall Street Journal]
Tomorrow night, I'll be posting my final top ten list for 2013. I've seen somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 new films this year, both theatrical releases and festival screenings, and picking ten that represent the full breadth of that year is flat-out impossible.
Even pushing the list out to 20 is incredibly difficult. Every single film on this list is a film that made my year better, more interesting, more entertaining, more surreal, or more hilarious. These are ten films that I would be proud to have on the top ten list, and that could easily have landed there in another year. And if pushed, I could come up with another ten on top of these two that were also equally good, including movies like Guillermo Del Toro's "Pacific Rim," which is already in heavy rotation in my house thanks to the way my kids watch and rewatch the things they love the most, or movies like David O. Russell's "American Hustle," which I thought was beautifully performed and wickedly funny, or even films like Shane Caruth's ferociously independent vision "Upstream Color," a brain-bending game that turns out to be deeply emotional.
The Library of Congress announced the 25 films selected for the 2013 National Film Registry and they feature some Academy Award winners, a groundbreaking documentary, genre classics and family favorites.
This past weekend, I went to New York to sit down with the entire ensemble cast of "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues," which seems fitting. I've had a long history not only with all the various players like Will Ferrell, David Koechner, Steve Carell, and Paul Rudd, but also with "Anchorman" itself.
The first time I wrote about it, it wasn't even in production yet. It was a script that was in turnaround, and Dreamworks was trying to get rid of it, something that still confounds me now. You can read my set visit report for the first film from a full decade ago, and one of my favorite interviews I ran at Ain't It Cool was with Adam McKay, Ferrell, and Koechner in a room together. It was pure chaos, and I loved it.
When we sat down this time, there was a feeling of celebration. After all, the first film almost didn't happen, and now here they all are a decade later making a highly-anticipated sequel. It's got to be a great feeling, and I just wanted to play a little instead of digging for scoops or trying to get something deep out of them.
Jimmy Fallon gets pelted with snowballs in "SNL" promos
Watch Fallon also sing a duet with Kate McKinnon.
Escapist shows were all the rage in 2013
From "Scandal" to "House of Cards," viewers preferred flashy escapism over high-minded drama.
Bradley Cooper: I wanted to "kill myself" on "Alias" after my role was reduced
Cooper was so miserable that he asked J.J. Abrams to write Will Tippin off the series, and got his wish.
Simon Cowell's dream "X Factor" panel: Paula Abdul, Randy Jackson and Miley Cyrus
Even though he already dumped Paula, they would be his "dream team."
What will the "Family Guy" fan who got an "RIP Brian" tattoo do now?
He could always wait until the show's cancelation.
Ryan Seacrest: We're not letting Miley Cyrus near the Times Square ball
"This is a ball she cannot touch," he says of her "New Year's Rockin' Eve" performance. "This one she cannot. She's not allowed to. But she can be standing under it when it goes down, when it drops."
Adrianne Palicki calls "Wonder Woman" failure "probably a blessing"
"It would've been a really hard thing to shoot," she says of the failed David E. Kelley pilot. "And I got to wear the costume -- I should say, I got paid to wear the costume! So not many people get to say that."
Daniela Ruah's pregnancy won't stop her from appearing in every "NCIS: LA" episode
Writers are using creative editing and special storytelling to hide Ruah's baby bump.
Damian Lewis: "Brody became quite a divisive figure" on "Homeland"
Reflecting more on the season finale, Lewis says: "Some thought the show couldn't move on until Brody was gone, some felt Brody was the show and it couldn’t survive without him. We'll see. All I know it was just terrific fun and a huge privilege to play such a fabulously written character and to be working with the people I worked with." PLUS: Season finale was in some ways offensive, "Homeland" told the worst lies about U.S. foreign policy and "Homeland" was creating tension for American diplomacy.
"SVU" alum Diane Neal joins Starz's "Power"
Also: Kristen Wiig's "Bridesmaids" comedy writing partner Annie Mumolo is joining "About a Boy."
Why was "South Park" so good this season?
Perhaps the long delay and the shortened season allowed Matt & Trey to streamline their show-making process.
Oscar gets a facelift
Check out the new logo for the Academy Awards.
Regis & Kathie Lee reconnect on Twitter
"Reeeeege!!!! I'm lovin you on twitter!" tweeted Kathie Lee, adding: "How can life get any better?"
All about "Six Feet Under's" series finale death montage
Read an oral history of that legendary seven-minute flash-forward to end the HBO series. PLUS: Read an oral history of "Sex and the City's" Splat episode.
Inside Tyler Florence's home
The Food Network star is listing his San Francisco Bay Area home for just under $2 million.
Here are 23 "Game of Thrones"-themed Christmas gifts
From dragon to "Game of Thrones" plushies.
Will Forte's favorite "SNL" sketch: Dancing with Peyton Manning in the locker room
Forte says he came up with that 2007 sketch with "30 Rock's" John Lutz, who came up with the idea of dancing.
"Scandal" stars: Then & Now
Columbus Short used to dance for Britney, Tony Goldwyn was a "Ghost" and Guillermo Diaz was in "Half Baked."
How "The Simpsons" brand took over the world
Twenty-four years after its debut, "The Simpsons" is still raking in lots of money from merchandise sales.
NFL had 9 of the Top 10 TV broadcasts of 2013
At No. 7, the Oscars was the only non-NFL top-TV broadcast this year.
"The Voice" will return Feb. 25, with Usher and Shakira
Adam Levine and Blake Shelton will also be back for Season 4.
Charlie Sheen's manager and publicist both resign
Sheen's manager, Mark Burg, represented Sheen for 16 years, while publicist Larry Solters has represented Sheen since his 2011 meltdown.
TCM sets tributes to Peter O'Toole and Joan Fontaine
Both movie legends will get a tribute on the same day, Dec. 29.
"The Young and the Restless" fires Michael Muhney
The "Veronica Mars" alum played Adam Newman for nearly six years.
Showtime unveils "Penny Dreadful" trailer
The psychosexual horror series stars Eva Green, Josh Hartnett, Timothy Dalton and Billie Piper.
PBS tonight examines "How Shakespeare Changed the World"
"The Walking Dead's" Andrew Lincoln narrates this documentary calling Sherlock "the first CSI."
For a reality TV show to churn through 17 seasons, it has to change at least a little bit to hold our interest. Since the essential formula of "The Bachelor" (premiering Mon. Jan. 6 at 8:00 p.m.) can't twist too much (boy meets girl, repeat, repeat, repeat), in season 18 the ABC series will deliver a first -- "I'm the first Latino bachelor," as Juan Pablo Galavis helpfully describes himself.
Adam McKay might be one of the strangest guys making mainstream comedy right now, and one of the things that I dearly love about his work is that the more success he has, the weirder he allows himself to be. He and Will Ferrell have built a lovely filmography out of making a series of films together that seem to be divorcing themselves more completely from reality each time out.
As a result, when you look at "Anchorman" next to "Anchorman 2," you can see that there's been an evolution between the two, and how you feel about the film is going to depend largely on how you feel about a movie that doesn't seem terribly interested in any sort of traditional structure and that resolutely refuses to take anything seriously. Even when it seems like the movie is starting to tip into some weird maudlin territory regarding the relationship between Ron (Ferrell) and his young son Walter, it's all just a chance to rip on the Hollywood cliche of making comedies about how every working father is neglectful and stupid, especially ones that work hard at their jobs.