Michael Arndt, eh?
There are dream jobs that certain writers book that I genuinely envy, and I'll admit it. There are storytelling opportunities that I wish were mine instead of someone else's. And while I think it will eventually be a great job to sign up and do a "Star Wars" movie, I don't think "Episode VII" is going to be the moment I'd want to handle, if only because we have never seen expectations like the ones that will fall on whoever is brought in to write and direct this movie.
Michael Arndt won the Academy Award for his script for "Little Miss Sunshine," and he was one of the writers on Pixar's "Toy Story 3," so you certainly can't fault Kathleen Kennedy for reaching out to him to help craft an outline that is evidently going to be used as the road map for "Star Wars - Episode VII."
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Michael Arndt, eh?
Yesterday, I showed the poster for "Jurassic Park 3D" to my two sons, who have seen the film here at home several times, including a Film Nerd 2.0 screening that I wrote about, and when Toshi realized he was going to get to see it in a theater next summer in both IMAX and 3D, his eyes went wide.
"That's going to scare me out of the crap!"
Indeed it will. I'm all for the sudden realization by the studios that they have these valuable assets on their shelves, these movies that could be living an ongoing theatrical life if they would just treat them like events, even if they are releasing them in slightly revised form. In this particular case, I think "Jurassic Park" is pretty much the perfect movie to use, and 3D and IMAX both sound like they could be great new ways to have fun with the film. It's funny to see this trailer because they can use images that were never part of the original advertising for the film. If they'd shown this much in 1993, audiences would have been furious.
BEVERLY HILLS - You don't get to speak to a legend like Sally Field every day. The 66-year-old actress has been in the public eye for over 45 years first gaining notoriety with her starring roles in the '60s TV series "Gidget" and "The Flying Nun." In the '70s she began to show an unexpected range. Whether it was her acclaimed performance in the TV movie "Sybil" or indulging superstar Burt Reynolds in "Smokey and the Bandit" it was clear Field had more than a smile, she had fire.
Over the last year and change, you may have noticed an occasional mysterious allusion to some project I was working on but wasn't ready to discuss. Well, today I am very proud to announce that it's my new book, "The Revolution Was Televised: The Cops, Crooks, Slingers and Slayers Who Changed TV Drama Forever."
I'll have a review of Sean Baker's "Starlet" for you a little later, but first I want to share a clip from the film with you. It's the story of a girl in her 20s living in the San Fernando Valley, where she meets an old woman at a garage sale. The woman sells her a vase, and inside, the girl finds $10,000 in cash that the old woman didn't know existed. What results is a very strange friendship, and a very charming movie.
Dree Hemingway is the star of the film, and I'm going to bet this is just the start of what we'll see from her. She does very delicate, careful work as Jane, who is still young and still figuring out who she is, but who also seems to be possessed of a greater sense of self than most of her peers. And, yes, she's one of those Hemingways. Her mother is Mariel Hemingway, making her the great-granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway. She is tall and striking and seems to made up of about 96% legs.
The Best Actor field is already sufficiently crowded -- with a couple of nominees seemingly glued in place -- that you wouldn't envy any newcomer to the race. Yet The Weinstein Company, which is hardly short of a serious contender in the category, is reportedly sufficiently high on Christoph Waltz in the still-unseen "Django Unchained" to campaign him in the lead category.
Gold Derby's Tom O'Neil quotes an unspecified "insider" as saying Waltz's performance as a dentist-cum-bounty-hunter, who joins Jamie Foxx's title character in a rescue mission, "towers over the whole movie." That's the kind of claim many had assumed would be made for Leonardo DiCaprio's villainous supporting turn. Is Waltz really the film's MVP -- just as he was, to Oscar-winning effect, in Quentin Tarantino's last effort -- or is he being elevated to declutter DiCaprio's Best Supporting Actor campaign?
Ke$ha channels a number of pop divas in her music video for "Die Young," but none so closely as "Slave 4 U"-era Britney Spears. Sex and death have always been bedfellows, but the arcing, aching, sumptuous, dirty eventualities of a video like this seem to be nodding at that youthful peak era, where something so ridiculously indulgent and over-the-top proved to be the norm and nasty.
However, the chasm between the fun-bop of the song and the So Serious nature of the debauched clip that can't quite bridge. Ke$ha's mug flashes in tasteful black-and-white, then in early-'90s neon and in the leathery sepia tones of her semi-religious desert sex compound (a girl can dream); she's carried in as a idolatrous prop (a la Gaga), contorting in tribal furs (Shakira), introducing anarchy to a place of religious worship (Madonna) in a sea of triagles (Geometry 101). All together, this video and the Ke$ha brand hasn't a clue what it is, beyond blipping animal rule into a big pile of gropers till the world ends...
The previously announced Fiona Apple will be joined by Ryan Adams, Norah Jones, the Avett Brothers, and, of course, Graham Parker, on the soundtrack for Judd Apatow’s “This Is 40.”
While tracks from some of the artists, including Paul Simon, the Avetts, and Loudon Wainwright, have been released before, the cuts from Jones, Apple, Parker (who plays heavily into the plot), Lindsey Buckingham, Wilco, and Adams are all original. Jon Brion composed the score and produced several of the new cuts, including Apple’s “Dull Tool.” The soundtrack comes out Dec. 11.
The track listing for "Music From The Motion Picture This Is 40" is as follows:
1. I'm Your Angel – Yoko Ono
2. Always Judging – Norah Jones
3. What Do You Like? – Graham Parker with Punch Brothers
4. Sick Of You – Lindsey Buckingham
5. Rewrite – Paul Simon
6. Shining Through The Dark (Live) – Ryan Adams
7. Lunch Box Odd Sox – Paul McCartney
8. Brother & Sister – Lindsey Buckingham Featuring Norah Jones
9. Theme 1 (Debbie & Oliver) – Jon Brion
10. Watch The Moon Come Down – Graham Parker & The Rumour
11. Days That We Die – Loudon Wainwright
12. She Acts Like You – Lindsey Buckingham
13. Dull Tool – Fiona Apple
14. Lucky Now (Live) – Ryan Adams
15. I Got You – Wilco
16. Live & Die – The Avett Brothers
Bonus track (digital only):
17. Protection (Live) – Graham Parker & The Rumour
This word is iconic in popular culture as something the director shouts to end the shooting of a scene. It even featured prominently in last year’s Best Picture winner.
But it's the film editors who truly "cut" our films down to what we actually see on screen. Deciding what leave in, what to leave out, how to convey the narrative and how to establish pace are just a few of the editor’s extraordinarily important roles.
The work of many other crafts artists, to say nothing of the actors, is finished when the shoot is done. Others, such as the composer, only begin when the shoot is over. The film editor, on the other hand, is there throughout, working with the director until the film is just right.