MCN Originals Archive for February, 2015

The Coming & Going Of A Studio Chief

Amy Pascal was not only a studio chief. She was the longest surviving studio chief in Hollywood by many years (in Hollywood time, of course). Almost 19 years in the job. The new longest-running show in Hollywood is Jim Gianopulos, who has been in place since 2000, although he only became a solo act in 2012 and just hired Stacey Snider to take a pretty firm handle on production as he thinks more expansively.

The second longest running show in town might shock you…

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The Gronvall Report: Gabe Polsky On RED ARMY

The thrillingly kinetic new documentary Red Army shows there’s another, deeper dimension to the sport that sets it apart from American football: not all that long ago, hockey was emblematic of the Cold War struggle between the USA and the USSR. The movie tells the little known behind-the-scenes story of the Soviet Union’s state-sponsored world-champion hockey team, a nearly unbeatable marvel of speed, agility, and unity.

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Gurus o’ Gold: Final Voting Starts This Week (1 of 2)

The Gurus go the whole 22 (excluding shorts) as The Academy voting is about to begin. There is a lot of movement, though the projected winner has only changed in 2 categories since Nomination Day.

Part 2 is here

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Sundance 2015 Review: The Forbidden Room

Known for making trippy, weird stories that are both deeply personal explorations of philosophical ideas, Maddin works in layers of abstract visual poetry. Recline in your seat, breathe in, breathe out, and allow the imagery to flow into you as you try to take it all in; you’re peering directly into Maddin’s brain through the lens of his camera, and given the recurrence of the idea of “brain” throughout his work, that’s about as meta as you can get.

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The Weekend Report

Go Patriots … regardless of your opinion of American Sniper, Clint Eastwood’s late-career phenom once again led session viewing with an estimated $31.5 million box office. The frame saw three new national releases that did not compete with Super Bowl Sunday. “Found footage” time-travel yarn Project Almanac arrived with $8.4 million while the tale of custody and race Black or White grossed $6.4 million. The Loft, a second remake of a 2008 Belgian film by its original director, struggled to $2.8 million.

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Eight Sundance Standouts

At a festival that prides in programming new faces – and with so many movies demanding to be discovered – it’s hard to know what will rise to the Sundance surface. Well, sort of: with the festival awards behind us, we do know the big US Dramatic winner Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, a ticket too hot for me to find a seat for, will find lots of success in the coming months.

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MCN Originals

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“The word I have fallen in love with lately is ‘Hellenic.’ Greek in its mythology. So while everyone is skewing towards the YouTube generation, here we are making two-and-a-half-hour movies and trying to buck the system. It’s become clear to me that we are never going to be a perfect fit with Hollywood; we will always be the renegade Texans running around trying to stir the pot. Really it’s not provocation for the sake of being provocative, but trying to make something that people fall in love with and has staying power. I think people are going to remember Dragged Across Concrete and these other movies decades from now. I do not believe that they will remember some of the stuff that big Hollywood has put out in the last couple of years. You’ve got to look at the independent space to find the movies that have been really special recently. Even though I don’t share the same world-view as some of my colleagues, I certainly respect the hell out of their movies which are way more fascinating than the stuff coming out of the studio system.”
~ Dallas Sonnier

“My first objective relationship in life was with the camera. I didn’t understand anything but then I realized the camera is my friend. It doesn’t lie to me. It doesn’t manipulate me. It only reports what I’m doing. And therefore, for me to work with a camera and the camera to be directed by an artist, a craftsman, someone who knows what he or she wants, I couldn’t ask for anything more.”
~ Elliot Gould