MCN Originals

20 Weeks To Oscar: Sell Short

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In the real world, where studios are just selling movies with massive marketing campaigns, the marketing windows have shrunk in recent years. Big TV buys, it seems, can wait for 3 weeks out if the awareness has been pumped up via publicity for the months and months before.

Have Oscar campaigners taken this lesson to heart? Are the early September festivals just an awareness play, followed by a 6 – 8 week window of lingering, and then the real campaign in the course of just a few weeks?

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Wilmington on Movies: Gone Girl

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Even if you’ve never read the book or seen the movie (which may well be the case), you probably think you sort of know what’s going to happen next. But you probably don’t. Gone Girl, which Flynn has cunningly imagined and craftily, stunningly wrote, and which Fincher has visualized with all the eerie expertise which usually marks his high-style crime movies (including Fight Club, Se7en, The Game, Zodiac, Panic Room, and even The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), is, like many another thriller of its type, dependent on how far we’re willing to suspend disbelief. But, in the realms of bestseller-turned-moviedom, Gone Girl is a cut or two above and definitely better than most — full of not always guessable tricks and twists, told in a tense, taut, racy, mostly engrossing style and boasting a lot of tangy, sharply drawn characters, very well played by a very good cast.

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Halloween Gift guide: Universal Monsters, Vincent Price, Pee-wee, Nightbreed and More

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Even Charlie Brown couldn’t have imagined the extent of the violence caused by pumpkin fanatics in New Hampshire and, traditionally, by students in Madison and Carbondale. I can think of several better ways to kill time while waiting for dawn to rise on All Saints Day or, if you prefer, Día de Muertos. It is in this spirit that DVD Wrapup presents the first of its annual gift guides.

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Review: Interstellar (non-spoiler)

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The Weekend Report

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Friday Box Office Estimates

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20 Weeks To Oscar: Surveying The Board

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NY Times

“Regardless of the visionary question, however, it’s pretty much impossible to think of a film that grossed more than a billion dollars and is better than The Dark Knight—or, to think of it in the way that Nolan prefers, a better film that was seen, so many times over, by so many people.”
NYT Sunday Magazine Cover-Stories Chris Nolan At Almost 7,000 Words

“If you’ve ever played in any kind of improvisational group, you know that the key to making it work is listening to your fellow players, not trying to vanquish them.”
J. R. Jones Backlashes Whiplash

NY Times

“It ain’t a lot of fun to make failed movies, and to be successful you have to be in the attention-getting business. Actually, attention-getting is the dominant thing that has taken over the media business over all.”
Brooks Barnes Checks Peter Chernin’s Progress As Well-Financed But Successful Independent Producer

“By allowing it to exist as a default, we are throwing away our freedom of artistic expression as filmmakers because someone else is deciding that our work will be seen completely differently in the end.”
Cinematographer Reed Morano On The Fight Against TV’s “Smooth Motion” Setting

“With the restored health of the publishing industry and having some sense of where this sort of Isis-like distribution channel, Amazon, is going to be buried and in which plot of sand they will be stuck, publishers will be able to raise the author’s digital royalty to 40% or 50%. Writers will begin to make enough money to live.”
No Love Lost Between Literary Agent Andrew “The Jackal” Wylie And Amazon

“The use of 3D with this explosion of images is what makes this film by an 83-year-old seem so much younger and freer than most films by directors in their twenties.”
Filmmaker David Barker Goes For Godard’s Gaga

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Quote Unquotesee all »

“The city to me is the only possible vehicle we have to measure human achievement. We’re an urban species now. If you look at Karachi or Mexico City or Hong Kong or London or New York or Yonkers or Baltimore or any of these other places, the pastoral is now a part of human history. We’re either going to figure out how to live together in these increasingly crowded, increasingly multi-cultural population centers or we’re not. We’re either going to get great at this or we’re going to fail as a species.”
~ David Simon

“I wondered how different it would be to write a novel and it’s totally different. It’s very internal. The weird thing about it is that I found that novel-writing was much more like directing than it is like screenwriting. You’re casting it, you’re lighting it, you’re doing the costumes, you’re doing the locations, you’re doing it all yourself as a director would. In screenwriting, you don’t do that stuff. You don’t describe the face of the actor or the character when you’re writing a screenplay because Tom Cruise is going to do it and he doesn’t look like that, whereas in the novel to describe what he is is what he is. The actual act of writing, just like shooting on a set, is a slow slog. It’s going to work every day.”
~ David Cronenberg On Screenplay vs. Novel