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<p>Tina Fey's newest film, 'Admission,' is about to open even as she celebrates the conclusion of '30 Rock' and looks ahead to future projects like 'The Nest'</p>

Tina Fey's newest film, 'Admission,' is about to open even as she celebrates the conclusion of '30 Rock' and looks ahead to future projects like 'The Nest'

Credit: Focus Features

Tina Fey may 'Nest' with the director of 'Pitch Perfect' for Universal

Paula Pell's script sounds like a perfect fit for Fey

Tina Fey is going to be a busy, busy woman now that "30 Rock" is finished.  I get this feeling like the entire industry has been waiting for her to conclude the series so they can all get busy making her stinking rich.  She is pretty much universally loved by the people making decisions in this industry, and she's as valuable behind the camera as in front of it.

I'm out the door in a few minutes to go see "Admission," and I'm curious to see how she is in it, although I think it's just one of what I'm sure will be many Tina Fey movies in the next few years as Hollywood tries to figure out what works best for her at the box office.  The pairing of her with Paul Rudd is almost like doing a movie on training wheels.  Of course they'll be charming and funny together, whether there's anything more to the movie or not.  Those two seem perfectly paired in terms of comic sensibility.

I like the idea of her starring in something written by Paula Pell, who was a producer on "This Is 40" and who served as one of Judd Apatow's on-set sounding boards for new material as they were working.  Pell has a very wry and active presence on Twitter these days, and she's known Fey since the "Saturday Night Live" days, so there's a comfort level there already.  Pell just set up her script for "The Nest" with Fey's company Little Stranger Inc. to produce at Universal, and Jason Moore, who directed "Pitch Perfect," is currently negotiating to make this as his next film.

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Review: Jim James 'Regions of Light and Sound of God'

Review: Jim James 'Regions of Light and Sound of God'

My Morning Jacket frontman's funky solo step outside of arena-sized jams

In his work with Monsters of Folk and on all the varietal Yim Yames tracks, its easy to hear that Jim James has a "small music" streak in him when he's not fronting arena jammers My Morning Jacket.

And make no mistake: there are what I'd call "jams" still on "Regions of Light and Sound of God," with keen, rolling guitar lines and long instrumental sections. This solo set contains more hooks and melodic pop ideas tucked in the back pocket of James' jeans, flourishing with the help of horns and sampled drums. Pushed to the front is James' delicate alto, as opposed to his full-throated tenor, dreamily looping through left-of-center world rock like "All Is Forgiven" and time-travel funks like awesome opener "State of the Art (A.E.I.O.U.)."

At times he channels George Harrison to cool, wallpapery, new-age effect. The close-eyed groove of "Dear One" and acoustic hybrid "A New Life" feel amicably retro, in its lyrics of "babes" and "stardust" and "daily every minute your possession of my mind / ticking synchronicty of time." Other times, he's chopped up his pop-folk motifs and re-assembled them into a similar sonic magic that the Dirty Projectors have (here's looking at you "Of The Mother Again"). Conceptually, it's "inspired by life and the novel in woodcuts 'God's Man' by Lynd Ward." Sonically, it's an earful.

"Regions of Light and Sound of God" is progress for James, with nuanced and progressive performances all over its, well, regions. Not every song will captivate the listener, but maybe that's the secret to relaxing and enjoying  James' little mists and mystics.

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<p>Daniel&nbsp;Craig in &quot;Skyfall&quot;</p>

Daniel Craig in "Skyfall"

Credit: Sony Pictures

Oscar Guide 2013: Best Music - Original Score

'Anna Karenina,' 'Argo,' 'Life of Pi,' 'Lincoln' and 'Skyfall' square off

(Welcome to the Oscar Guide, your chaperone through the Academy’s 24 categories awarding excellence in film.  A new installment will hit every weekday in the run-up to the Oscars on February 24, with the Best Picture finale on Friday, February 22.)

Best Original Score, are you ever predictable. This year’s nominees are not diverse in terms of being films not cited in other categories – Best Picture nominees took three of the spots, while the other two contenders are from films that have nine nominations between them. Also predictably, only one first-time nominee is in the mix. Diversity was nonetheless made up for in the nationalities of the composers (four countries represented) and the locales of the nominated films – the nominees are set on three different continents and the movies’ themes resulted in Russian, Indian and Persian influences, among others, on the music.

To most of us watching this race, there were four very predictable nominees and all came through. The fifth spot was always up in the air so there were no shocking omissions. That said, I think three titles could reasonably considered “snubbed”: “Cloud Atlas” and “The Master” both received notable precursor attention. It’s also somewhat odd that “Beasts of the Southern Wild”’s great score by Benh Zeitlin and Dan Romer couldn’t score even with the film’s four big nominations. The branch kept up its tradition of only nominating one new composer.

The nominees are…

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<p>Matthew McConaughey in &quot;Mud&quot;</p>

Matthew McConaughey in "Mud"

Credit: Roadside Attractions

Jeff Nichols' 'Mud' with Matthew McConaughey gets a poster

Film is set for April 26 release

If I wasn't clear enough at Sundance, I'm a huge fan of Jeff Nichols' "Mud." I can't wait to see it again and I have no doubt it will linger in my top 10 list until the end of the year. Roadside Attractions has begun its roll-out of the film, which is set for an April 26 release, first with a trailer in advance of the North American premiere at Sundance and now with a sweet poster that puts the film's star, Matthew McConaughey, front and center. Check out my interview with McConaughey from Park City here and get a load of the full poster (which debuted at Entertainment Weekly) below.

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Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 168

Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 168

Dan and Alan talk Super Bowl, 'Monday Mornings,' 'Community,' 'Smash' and more

The

Happy Monday, Boys & Girls! 
 
I hope your post-Super Bowl hangovers have passed, because it's time for another installment of The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast.
 
In this week's podcast, we talk extensively about the Super Bowl, including the commercials, the halftime show and the blackout. We talk about Monday's premiere of the TNT's "Monday Mornings," as well as the variably successful returns of NBC's "Smash" and "Community" and AMC's "The Walking Dead."
 
And we dedicate much more time to the "30 Rock" finale, including answering a handful of Listener Mail queries. 
 
Here's the breakdown:
Super Bowl XLVII (00:00:55 - 23:20)
"Monday Mornings" (00:23:20 - 00:35:10)
"Smash" (00:35:10 - 00:46:40)
"Community" (00:46:40 - 00:56:15)
"The Walking Dead" (00:56:20 - 01:03:10)
Listener Mail - Kareem's Thoughts on "Girls" (01:03:30 - 01:09:45)
"30 Rock" finale (01:09:45 - 01:37:10)

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.] 

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.

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Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 168: 'Community,' 'Smash,' 'The Walking Dead' & more

Dan and Alan also review Super Bowl ads, TNT's 'Monday Mornings' and revisit the '30 Rock' finale

The

Another long Firewall & Iceberg Podcast this week, as Dan and I discuss various Super Bowl-related entertainment (or the lack thereof), the revamped returns of "Smash" And "Community," discuss TNT's "Monday Mornings," check in on the return of "The Walking Dead," and spend even more time extolling the virtues of "30 Rock." Oh, and we get to discuss Kareem Abdul-Jabar, TV critic. Always fun. The lineup: 

Super Bowl XLVII (00:00:55 - 23:20)
"Monday Mornings" (00:23:20 - 00:35:10)
"Smash" (00:35:10 - 00:46:40)
"Community" (00:46:40 - 00:56:15)
"The Walking Dead" (00:56:20 - 01:03:10)
Listener Mail - Kareem's Thoughts on "Girls" (01:03:30 - 01:09:45)
"30 Rock" finale (01:09:45 - 01:37:10)
 
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.

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.

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<p>Tim Burton on the set of &quot;Frankenweenie&quot;</p>

Tim Burton on the set of "Frankenweenie"

Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

Tim Burton on Ray Harryhausen, stop-motion and the personal touch of 'Frankenweenie'

The Oscar nominee discusses coming back to the property that got him fired

The last time Tim Burton made the awards press rounds, he was a nominee for 2005's "Corpse Bride." Interestingly enough, after a few decades in the live action trenches carving out his own identity and aesthetic on the screen, it's been only in the animation arena that Oscar has taken notice. He's back again this year as a nominee for his most personal film in some time, "Frankenweenie."

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<p>Local man starts from bottom</p>

Local man starts from bottom

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Drake drops new song 'Started from the Bottom' a week early

Rapper posts open letter to fans, hype machine revs up

Drake told the world he'd be dropping a new single on the weekend of the Grammys, but it appears "Started from the Bottom" wished to make itself known a few days early.

The Young Money MC and singer hatched the song on his OVO website, along with an open letter supporting the song's claims that he "started from the bottom."

"I feel sometimes that people don't have enough information about my beginnings and therefore they make up a life story for me that isn't consistent with actual events," Drake said. "My family and my second family (consisting of the best friends anybody could ever have) all struggled and worked extremely hard to make all this happen. I did not buy my way into this spot and it was the furthest thing from easy to achieve."

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<p>Michael Haneke and Emmanuelle Riva on the set of &quot;Amour&quot;</p>

Michael Haneke and Emmanuelle Riva on the set of "Amour"

Credit: Sony Classics

Stumping for Emmanuelle Riva

An impassioned plea to hold-out voters: Watch 'Amour'

There were precious few of us who thought Michael Haneke's brilliant "Amour" had the proper support to show up in the major categories at the Academy Awards. At the end of the day, it was faith well-placed, as the film was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress and Best Original Screenplay (though I still wonder why Jean-Louis Trintignant was lost in the shuffle).

That is, in some ways, a win in and of itself. It's huge, really. But I'm troubled in my calls and conversations lately: many members, despite this strong showing, still haven't seen the film. And I would like to implore them now: watch the movie. It's not as much of a downer as you think it is. It's a beautiful exploration of its namesake. Actors in particular, it's a stunning display of your craft. And with a Best Actress race that has some excitement to it, it behooves you to make an educated pick.

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<p>&quot;Chasing Ice&quot;</p>

"Chasing Ice"

Credit: Submarine Deluxe

Oscar Guide 2013: Best Music - Original Song

'Chasing Ice,' 'Les Mis,' 'Life of Pi,' 'Skyfall' and 'Ted' square off

(Welcome to the Oscar Guide, your chaperone through the Academy’s 24 categories awarding excellence in film.  A new installment will hit every weekday in the run-up to the Oscars on February 24, with the Best Picture finale on Friday, February 22.)

FINALLY! The music branch smartened up about this category, changed its rules and put together five entirely respectable nominees. Two major Best Picture contenders with prominently placed songs managed to score, as did a haunting new tune for a documentary, the sultry and epic opening credits title song to a major franchise movie and the cute, somewhat tongue-in-cheek opening credits title song to a comedy about a potty-mouthed, pot-smoking teddy bear.

Old favorites such as Paul Williams (“Still Alive” from “Paul Williams: Still Alive”) and Dolly Parton (“From Here to the Moon and Back” from “Joyful Noise”) must be disappointed to miss the cut. Ditto for a big younger star like Keith Urban (“For You” from “Actor of Valor”). But perhaps the most obvious surprising omission is Ennio Morricone and Elisa for “Ancora Qui” from “Django Unchained”; who knows if there will be a chance to honor Morricone again? But this category has a heavy favorite, and justly so. An upset would be disconcerting to a lot of people, for a lot of reasons.

The nominees are…

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<p>The Postal Service's &quot;Give Up&quot;</p>

The Postal Service's "Give Up"

Credit: Sub Pop

The Postal Service delivers additional concert dates beyond Coachella

U.S. stops include Las Vegas and Brooklyn

As expected, The Postal Service has added more dates to its 10th anniversary tour. Ben Gibbard and Jimmy Tamborello have added 10 more concerts in addition to the pair’s previously announced stop at Coachella on April 13 and April 20.

Six of the 10 dates are in the U.S., while the other four additional dates are in Europe, among them Barcelona’s Primavera Soundwave festival.

As previously announced, the 10th anniversary of The Postal Service’s “Give Up,” comes out April 9 on Sub Pop. It includes the original 10-track album and 15 bonus tracks, including new songs, “Turn Around” and “A Tattered Line of String.”

The band will include Jenny Lewis and Laura Burhenn. Lewis appeared on the original recording of "Give Up." 

Looks like these dates are just the beginning, according to a press release  More dates will be announced as they are confirmed.

04/09/13 Tue - Reno NV @ Grand Sierra Theatre
04/10/13 Wed - Davis CA @ Mondavi Center
04/13/13 Sat - Indio CA @ Coachella
04/12/13 Fri - San Luis Obispo CA @ Madonna Expo Center
04/18/13 Thu - Phoenix AZ @ Comerica Theatre
04/19/13 Fri - Las Vegas NV @ Chelsea Ballroom at the Cosmopolitan
04/20/13 Sat - Indio CA @ Coachella
05/18/13 Sat - Manchester UK @ Academy 2
05/20/13 Mon - London UK @ Brixton Academy
05/21/13  Tues - Paris FR @ Trianon
05/23/13 Thu - Barcelona SP @ Primavera Soundwave
06/14/13 Fri - New York NY @ Barclay's
 

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Vampire Weekend announces new album title and tour dates
Credit: XL

Vampire Weekend announces new album title and tour dates

'Modern Vampires of the City' creeps in on May 7: Check out the album cover

Vampire Weekend have finally formally announced their new album, dubbed "Modern Vampires of the City." The NYC band remains with XL for this third full-length, which will get a touring launch starting at South By Southwest.

"Modern Vampires of the City" features 12 tracks, making it the most tracks of any VW album; as previously reported, the set was produced by member Rostam Batmanglij and Ariel Rechtshaid (Usher, Major Lazer, Charli XCX) and it will be released May 7.

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