Archive for January, 2014

Memento takes Jason Lew’s debut feature

January 29th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Memento Films have acquired international rights to ‘The Free World’, the debut film of screenwriter turned director, Jason Lew.  Cillian Murphy plays a rough justice victim, who subsequently disregards the law when falling under the influence of an enigmatic woman.  Lew is best known for writing the screenplay to Gus Van Sant’s ‘Restless’, which received its world premiere opening Cannes’ Un Certain Regard three years ago.  The film is scheduled to enter production later this year.best online generic cialis buy cialis online with paypal cialis online germanycialis order order cialis online from india cheap cialis 5mg buying cialis from mexico

‘Wolf’ going strong internationally

January 28th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Martin Scorsese’s ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ continued to perform strongly overseas where the film comfortably retained its No. 1 position at the international weekend box office.  The stock scam satire was active in a modest 27 international markets and grossed a strong $36m over the three days.  This increases the international tally to an early $85m, and after factoring in North America, takes its global total to $183m overall.cialis online best place buygeneric cialis tadalafil best buys buy cialis brand canada cialis for sale cheap order cialis india buy cialis in australia cialis online 40 mg

Strong second weekend hold for ‘Ride Along’

January 27th, 2014 - admin

Universal’s ‘Ride Along’ easily retained the No. 1 spot at the North American weekend box office after grossing a further $21.1m over the three days.  This is a strong hold coming on the back of its MLK weekend record breaking launch and takes the action comedy’s domestic tally to an impressive $75m.

 

‘Lone Survivor’ came in second with a solid $12.6m from its third wide weekend on release and gave Universal the top two positions for the second consecutive weekend, being the first studio to achieve this feat in twenty years.  The Afghan war drama now stands on $94m domestically.

 

It was a poor opening for the weekend’s only new wide release, ‘I, Frankenstein’, starring Aaron Eckhart.  The $65m modernised adaptation of the gothic classic could only muster $8.2m during the weekend, falling below already depressed  market expectations.  First night audiences gave it an average ‘B’ CinemaScore, which is unlikely to have any impact on word of mouth.

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‘Whiplash’ wins double prize at Sundance

January 26th, 2014 - Graham Eley

There were no surprises at last night’s Sundance awards ceremony with Damien Chazelle’s ‘Whiplash’ winning the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award in the US dramatic competition.

 

Chazelle’s second feature after ‘Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench’ opened this year’s edition with a bang and became the first film at the festival to sell.  It stars up and coming Miles Teller as an ambitious young jazz drummer and JK Simmons plays his brutal teacher.

 

Cutter Hodierne picked up the US dramatic Directing Award for his Somali pirates drama, ‘Fishing Without Nets’.  Like ‘Whiplash’, it is feature version of a short, which won a major award at Sundance.

 

‘Dear White People’ created most buzz before the festival when the film’s trailer went viral on YouTube and it received a US dramatic Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Talent.  Tyler Williams and Tessa Thompson star in this satirical look at race issues in contemporary America, which is the first feature from industry insider, Justin Simien.

 

The US documentary Grand Jury Prize went to the teenage hardship feature, ‘Rich Hill’.  ‘You’re Next’ cinematographer, Andrew Droz Palermo, collaborated with producer, Tracy Droz Tragos, to co-direct the documentary as their first feature.

 

Ryan White collaborated with newcomer, Ben Cotner, for his second documentary feature, ‘The Case Against 8′ and the pair won the US documentary Directing Award.  It provides an insiders’ viewpoint of the legal action to end California’s ban on same-sex marriage.

 

The Chilean new wave continued to enhance its reputation as one of the world’s most vibrant movements with Alejandro Fernández Almendras’ ‘To Kill a Man’ winning the world cinema dramatic Grand Jury Prize.  Almendras’ third feature surrounds a serious violent attack that led to a disproportionately short prison sentence for the perpetrator.

 

Sophie Hyde scooped the world cinema dramatic Directing Award for her gender transition drama, ’52 Tuesdays’.  It’s Hyde’s first directorial feature on her own after co-directing ‘Life in Movement’ with Bryan Mason and she filmed it on every Tuesday each week over the course of a year.

 

Syrian conflict feature, ‘Return to Homs’, took the world cinema documentary Grand Jury Prize.  Talal Derki’s debut feature follows young freedom fighters  in the besieged industrial city and ‘capital of the revolution’.

 

And the world cinema documentary Directing Award went to long term collaborators and visual artists, Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard for ‘20,000 Days On Earth’.  The title is a literal reference to the days that Nick Cave has spent on earth and the feature explores the musician and his creative process from unusual perspectives.price cialis 10mg how to order cialis online safely generic cialis gnc cialis price increase cialis online yahoo cialis for sale philippines generic cialis new zealand

Sundance Film Festival 2014 (January 16-26)

January 26th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Sundance’s 30th anniversary edition launches the festival season tomorrow with its now familiar blend of world premieres from established, emerging and new filmmakers.

 

Amongst those returning to Park City with new films are Lynn Shelton (Laggies), who picked up a Special Jury Prize for Humpday, John Michael McDonagh (Calvary) and Gregg Araki (White Bird in a Blizzard).

 

Marjane Satrapi (The Voices) leads an equally impressive list of Sundance newcomers, including Lenny Abrahamson (Frank) and Anton Corbijn (A Most Wanted Man), who debut their latest features.

 

All of the films in the US dramatic competition are world premieres with the family emerging as the dominant theme.   Joe Swanberg’s latest film, Happy Christmas, is one of five exploring the family institution in varied ways.

 

And there are high profile world premiere documentaries from Steve James (Life Itself) and Joe Berlinger (United States of America v. James J. Bulger).

 

U.S. DRAMATIC COMPETITION:

 

Camp X-Ray
Peter Sattler

 

Peter Sattler takes a potentially more reflective approach towards the ‘war on terror’ in his debut feature, ‘Camp X-Ray’.  Kristen Stewart plays a new Guantanamo guard, who developments an unusual friendship with a detainee.

 

Cold in July
Jim Mickle

 

Emerging filmmaker, Jim Mickle, makes another Sundance appearance after last year’s ‘We Are What We Are’, which went on to screen in Cannes’ Directors’ Fortnight.  Mickle follows it with a southern noir thriller where Michael C. Hall plays a homeowner, who faces a revenge attack after killing a burglar.

 

Dear White People
Justin Simien

 

The directorial debut of industry insider, Justin Simien, takes a light hearted statistical look at race issues in contemporary America.  Starring Tyler James Williams and Tessa Thompson, it is set in an Ivy League university where a white students’ ‘African American’ themed party causes a race riot.  The film’s trailer, which went viral on YouTube, has given it an early buzz.

 

Fishing Without Nets
Cutter Hodierne

 

Cutter Hodierne expands upon his short film, ‘Fishing Without Nets’, which won a special jury prize at Sundance two years ago.  Using non-professional actors, it depicts a moral dilemma facing a Somali pirate following the capture of an oil tanker.

 

God’s Pocket
John Slattery

 

John Slattery moves into the director’s chair with God’s Pocket, where things go from bad to worse for a construction worker after a fatal accident on site.  Philip Seymour Hoffman leads a stellar cast, which includes, amongst others, Christina Hendricks and John Turturro.

 

Happy Christmas
Joe Swanberg

 

Prolific Mumblecore filmmaker, Joe Swanberg, screens in the US dramatic competition for the first time with his latest feature, ‘Happy Christmas’.  It’s a standard Mumblecore set-up where a thirty something’s wife and sister share a similar sense of disillusionment in a complex family drama.  The film comes at a time when the movement appears to be almost at an end and its filmmakers are embracing other styles.

 

Hellion
Kat Candler

 

Kat Candler loosely based her third feature, ‘Hellion’, on a short of the same name, which she premiered at Sundance two years ago.  Aaron Paul, Juliette Lewis and Josh Wiggins star in an uncompromising drama where a dysfunctional one-parent family has to face a new reality after the Child Protective Services intervene.  Candler recently received a San Francisco Film Society/Kenneth Rainin Foundation filmmaking grant.

 

Infinitely Polar Bear
Maya Forbes

 

Screenwriter, Maya Forbes, best known for ‘Monsters vs Aliens’, turns filmmaker for the first time with ‘Infinitely Polar Bear’, starring  Mark Ruffalo, Zoe Saldana, Imogene Wolodarsky and Ashley Aufderheide.  As with a number of films at Sundance this year, it focuses on a family crisis from an unusual angle.  This one has Ruffalo playing a bipolar father, who tentatively takes care of the children after recovering from a nervous breakdown so that his wife can undertake an MBA.

 

Jamie Marks Is Dead
Carter Smith

 

Carter Smith continues his association with Sundance where he won the Jury Prize in Short Filmmaking for ‘Bugcrush’ and screened his later short, ‘Yearbook’.  He made his first feature, ‘The Ruins’, for just $8,000 and it went on to gross over $22m worldwide.  His follow up, ‘Jamie Marks Is Dead’, starring Cameron Monaghan, Noah Silver and Morgan Saylor, adapts Christopher Barzak’s novel, ‘One for Sorrow’ where the ghost of an anonymous school boy forms a surprising friendship with the classmate who found his body.

 

Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter
David Zellner

 

David Zellner returns to Sundance with his intriguing fifth feature, ‘Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter’, which he co-wrote with his brother and long term collaborator, Nathan.  Rinko Kikuchi (‘Pacific Rim’, ‘Norwegian Wood’) plays a loner, who travels from Tokyo to the harsh Minnesota winter in search of a non-existent fortune that she saw buried during a film.

 

Life After Beth
Jeff Baena

 

It is ten years since Jeff Baena made his only significant mark on film when he co-wrote ‘I Heart Huckabees’ with David O. Russell.  Baena now returns with his first feature in the director’s chair, ‘Life After Beth’, starring Aubrey Plaza, Dane DeHaan and John C. Reilly.  It’s an idiosyncratic mystery drama where a twenty something’s girlfriend comes back to life after an unexpected death but all is not what it first seems.

 

Low Down
Jeff Preiss

 

Jeff Preiss’ debut feature, ‘Low Down’, starring John Hawkes, Elle Fanning, Glenn Close and Lena Headey, depicts life with jazz pianist and heroin addict, Joe Albany, from the perspective of his daughter.  Amy Albany has adapted the script from her own memoir of the same name with screenwriter, Topper Lilien.

 

The Skeleton Twins
Craig Johnson

 

‘The Skeleton Twins’ is one of two films in competition along with Joe Swanberg’s ‘Happy Christmas’ from a filmmaker with Mumblecore associations.  It’s the second feature from Craig Johnson and, like ‘Happy Christmas’, looks at a complex relationship between two siblings, who, on this occasion, reunite after they both loose their way on opposite side of the States.  His debut film, ‘True Adolescents’, enjoyed strong festival exposure after premiering at SXSW.

 

The Sleepwalker
Mona Fastvold

 

After making music videos and performing in a handful of titles as an actress, Mona Fastvold directed her debut feature, ‘The Sleepwalker’, following a grant from the Norwegian Film Institute.  It picks up one of the competition’s dominate themes, family relationships, and explores the past’s impact on later lives when two sisters come into conflict.  The ensemble cast includes Brady Corbet with whom Fastvold co-wrote this film and his directorial debut, ‘The Childhood of a Leader’.

 

Song One
Kate Barker-Froyland

 

Kate Barker-Froyland’s feature debut, ‘Song One’, has the hallmarks of a romance drama that sits comfortably within the American indie tradition.  Anne Hathaway plays a thirty something who returns home when her brother suffers a bad injury, and forms an unlikely friendship with his favourite singer.

 

Whiplash
Damien Chazelle

 

Damien Chazelle returns to Sundance with a feature version of his short, ‘Whiplash’, which won a jury prize at last year’s festival.  Miles Teller (‘The Spectacular Now’, ‘Rabbit Hole’) and J.K. Simmons star in a musical drama where a young drummer encounters a brutal teacher who shares his obsession with perfection.  Chazelle’s debut feature ‘Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench’, attracted attention at various festivals and raised expectations for this follow up.discount cialis coupon cialis price walmart pharmacy can you order cialis online for canada cialis online canadian pharmacy cialis online doctor how to order cialis online generic cialis canadian

 

‘Gravity’ wins DGA’s top prize

January 26th, 2014 - Graham Eley

After pulling ahead in the best director race during the early stages of the awards season and going on to bag the Critics’ Choice and Golden Globe director prizes, it will not come as a great surprise to anyone that Gravity’s Alfonso Cuaron claimed this category’s most important pre-Oscar scalp, the top award at last night’s Directors Guild of America’s ceremony.  And he looks a safe bet to repeat the victory at the Academy Awards on March 7 with the DGA winner foreshadowing the director Oscar on all but seven occasions during the guild’s 65 year history.  Last year was one of the exceptions, of course, when the DGA’s winner, Ben Affleck, failed to secure an Oscar best director nomination for Argo.

 

The DGA’s award also has a bearing on the Oscar’s best film, which only 13 DGA winners have failed to win.  Gravity did not make an impression in this category until late into the awards season but seems to be gaining momentum at just the right time; most notably, its joint win at the Producers Guild of America awards.  As things stand, it is one of three frontrunners along with 12 Years a Slave and American Hustle.best online cialis reviews buy cialis 5mg generic cialis londoncialis 10mg online where to order cialis online cialis 100mg price order brand name cialis online

Robert Zemeckis lines up Petit feature

January 25th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Robert Zemeckis is moving through the gears rapidly on his next feature, ‘To Reach the Clouds’, a 3D dramatisation of Philippe Petit’s renowned Trade Centre high-wire exploits during the Seventies.  Along with co-scriptwriter, Christopher Browne, he will adapt Petit’s memoirs rather than remake James Marsh’s Oscar-winning documentary, ‘Man on Wire’, which covered the same ground.  Zemeckis is lining up Joseph Gordon-Levitt to play the lead and hopes to start filming during the summer.buy levitra in canada
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Tarantino pulls the plug

January 23rd, 2014 - Graham Eley

Quentin Tarantino has abandoned his next feature, ‘The Hateful Eight’, after a production insider leaked the script to agents.  It seems an extreme measure, on the face of it, and comes as Tarantino was lining up Bruce Dern, Tim Roth and Michael Madsen for key roles in the western.  But any chance of a rethink is unlikely, as Tarantino has already moved on to his next film which, once again, has Dern playing the lead.generic levitra does it work
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‘Ride Along’ smashes record

January 20th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Tim Story’s ‘Ride Along’ smashed the MLK weekend record on its North American launch, grossing a whopping $48.1m from 2,663 theatres over the extended four-day session.  The action comedy, starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, exceeded market expectations by an astonishing $13-18m, making it Universal’s second consecutive release after last weekend’s ‘Lone Survivor’ to take the market by surprise.  The film missed the mark with critics but connected with audiences, where it scored a first night ‘A’ CinemaScore.

 

Open Road also enjoyed a stronger than anticipated extended weekend with its first ever animated release, ‘The Nut Job’.  The comedy adventure earned a powerful $25m over the four days from a market high 3,427 theatres on its way to being the strongest ever debut by a non-studio animated film, notwithstanding a so-so ‘B’ CinemaScore.

 

Kenneth Branagh’s ‘Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit’ opened on $17.4m from 3,387 theatres, fractionally below market forecasts.  A first nighters’ ‘B’ CinemaScore left word of mouth flat for the revived franchise.

 

And the other wide opener, Fox’s R-rated low budget horror, ‘Devil’s Due’ could only muster $10m from 2,544 during the four days.  Its ‘D+’ CinemaScore was poor even for the tough marking horror crowd.generic levitra at walmart
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‘Wolf of Wall Street’ enjoys strong European openings

January 20th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Martin Scorsese’s ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ is performing stronger overseas than domestically and grossed $27m on its way to winning the international weekend box office.  The controversial black comedy debuted No. 1 in five European markets with the UK being its most successful on $7.6m.  It currently stands on $58m internationally, and after factoring in North America, $150 million worldwide.price of levitra at cvs
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American Hustle takes SAG’s top prize

January 19th, 2014 - Graham Eley

David O. Russell’s American Hustle has won SAG’s Outstanding Cast, often described as being its equivalent to best film.  But the award is not exactly comparable and its importance as an Oscar predictor – only 60% success rate during the last 10 years – is often overstated.  By contrast, the PGA’s top prize, best production, has corresponded with the Oscar winner for each of the last six years.

 

That said, American Hustle has been building momentum on the back of combined critical and commercial success at the right time – in much the same way as Argo last year – and it is now the Oscar frontrunner ahead of 12 Years a Slave.

 

SAG followed the Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice to make it a hat-trick of significant wins for Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto as best actor and supporting actor respectively for their performances in Dallas Buyers Club.  It would be a major surprise if the Oscars did not follow suit.

 

And the same goes for Blue Jasmine’s Cate Blanchett, who won best actress.  Lupita Nyong’o’s best supporting actress win for 12 Years A Slave establishes her as frontrunner in this category but American Hustle’s Jennifer Lawrence remains in the race.generic levitra soft tabs
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Ride Along challenges MLK weekend record

January 19th, 2014 - Graham Eley

After grossing a sensational $14.4m on its Friday opening at the North American box office, Ride Along stands a chance of beating Cloverfield’s $46.1m MLK weekend record, which has stood for over 5 years.  The action comedy, starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, connected with audiences, who awarded the film an ‘A’ CinemaScore, and its four-day tally will massively exceed all market forecasts.  What’s more, Ride Along is only active in 2,663 theatres being 748 less than Cloverfield when it set the record.

 

Open Road’s first ever animated release, The Nut Job, also took the market by surprise with a stronger than expected $4.8m Friday launch.  It could reach as high as $25m over the four-day session notwithstanding a so-so ‘B’ CinemaScore.

 

Another opener, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, received the same CinemaScore on its way to grossing $5.4m on Friday.  Although Kenneth Branagh’s thriller enjoyed a marginal lead over The Nut Job, the film will fall behind as the family audiences turn out throughout the remainder of the extended weekend and should finish the four days close to $20m in line with market predictions.

 

The other opener, Fox’s R-rated low budget horror, Devil’s Due, arrived on $3.4m.  Factoring in an appalling ‘D+’ CinemaScore and the usual horror genre front loading, it will be lucky to hit the $10m mark by Monday night.levitra fast delivery
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Villeneuve develops sci-fi drama

January 19th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Denis Villeneuve will follow his Toronto IFF double, ‘The Prisoner’ and ‘Enemy’, with a sci-fi drama, ‘The Story Of Your Life’.  Adapted from Ted Chiang’s award winning short story, things take an unexpected turn for a military translator trying to communicate with aliens, who contact Earth first.  It is still early days but Villeneuve plans to enter production later this year.generic levitra 20 mg
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Jonathan Caouette directing Marianne Faithfull documentary

January 18th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Jonathan Caouette follows ‘Walk Away Renee’, a personal record of his bipolar and schizoaffective mother during unusual circumstances, with a documentary on the singer and actress, Marianne Faithfull.  It will combine traditional documentary interviews and archive footage with more experimental devices.  Caouette remains best known for his debut documentary, ‘Tarnation’.online pharmacy for levitra
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‘Ride Along’ should debut at No.1

January 18th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Universal’s ‘Ride Along’, starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, grossed a strong $1.1m on Thursday night as the action comedy began its North American roll out ahead of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.  This is consistent with a $30m+ four-day session and it has a shot at hitting the $35m mark.

 

Kenneth Branagh’s ‘Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit’ with Chris Pine in the title role, earned a modest $330k but it should pick up as the older audiences turn out over the weekend.  The market is expecting an opening $15m+ for the four days but it is unlikely to reach $20m.

 

The arrival of ‘Nut Job’ will provide some family competition for Disney’s hit ‘Frozen’.  The animation adventure is likely to reach approximately $15m by Monday night.

 

It is a case of low budget and low expectations for 20th Century Fox’s supernatural horror, ‘Devil’s Due’, starring Allison Miller and Zach Gilford.  The market is forecasting four day earnings around $8-9m.buy levitra online with paypal
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Acting nominations spring surprises

January 16th, 2014 - Graham Eley

The best film nominations for the 86th Academy Awards were in line with expectations for a group of nine.  Saving Mr Banks’ exclusion may raise some eyebrows but it has struggled to make a mark during the awards season in this category and the writing seemed on the wall after the early Golden Globes’ nomination snub.

 

The same could not be said about Emma Thompson, whose performance in Saving Mr Banks seemed a near certainty for a best actress nomination.  In the end, she lost out to Meryl Streep for August: Osage County and, with the benefit of hindsight, that film’s strong showing in the influential SAG nominations was an early indication of the outcome.

 

The Wolf of Wall Street appears to have edged out Captain Philips for best director and actor, with all of the other nominees in these categories being dead certs.  Both Paul Greengrass’ direction  and Tom Hanks’ lead performance had looked like securing Captain Philips nominations throughout the awards season but there were signs of increased support for The Wolf of Wall Street since the New Year.  The same momentum gave Jonah Hill a push at the right time in taking the fifth nomination for best supporting actor.

 

The best actress category sprung a surprise with the exclusion of Oprah Winfrey for her role in The Butler.  She may well have suffered as a result of the film’s lack of impetus in other categories.

 

Nominations:

 

BEST PICTURE

 

“12 Years a Slave”
“American Hustle”
“Captain Phillips”
“Dallas Buyers Club”
“Gravity”
“Her”
“Nebraska”
“Philomena”
“The Wolf of Wall Street”

 

BEST DIRECTOR

 

David O. Russell, “American Hustle”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”
Alexander Payne, “Nebraska”
Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”
Martin Scorsese, “The Wolf of Wall Street”

 

BEST ACTOR

 

Christian Bale, “American Hustle”
Bruce Dern, “Nebraska”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”
Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”

 

BEST ACTRESS

 

Amy Adams, “American Hustle”
Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Sandra Bullock, “Gravity”
Judi Dench, “Philomena”
Meryl Streep, “August: Osage County”

 

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

“American Hustle” – Written by Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell
“Blue Jasmine” – Written by Woody Allen
“Her” – Written by Spike Jonze
“Nebraska” – Written by Bob Nelson
“Dallas Buyers Club” – Written by Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack

 

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

 

“Before Midnight” – Written by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke
“Captain Phillips” – Screenplay by Billy Ray
“Philomena” – Screenplay by Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope
“12 Years a Slave” – Screenplay by John Ridley
“The Wolf of Wall Street” – Screenplay by Terence Winter

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

 

Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”
Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle”
June Squibb, “Nebraska”
Julia Roberts, “August: Osage County”
Sally Hawkins, “Blue Jasmine”

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

 

Barkhad Abdi, “Captain Phillips”
Bradley Cooper, “American Hustle”
Michael Fassbender, “12 Years a Slave”
Jonah Hill, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”

 

BEST ANIMATED FILM

 

“The Croods”
“Despicable Me 2”
“Ernest & Celestine”
“Frozen”
“The Wind Rises”

 

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

 

“The Grandmaster”
“Gravity”
“Inside Llewyn Davis”
“Nebraska”
“Prisoners”

 

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

 

Michael Wilkinson, “American Hustle”
William Chang Suk Ping, “The Grandmaster”
Catherine Martin, “The Great Gatsby”
Michael O’Connor, “The Invisible Woman”
Patricia Norris, “12 Years a Slave”

 

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

 

“The Act of Killing”Joshua Oppenheimer and Signe Byrge Sørensen
“Cutie and the Boxer” Zachary Heinzerling and Lydia Dean Pilcher
“Dirty Wars” Richard Rowley and Jeremy Scahill
“The Square” Jehane Noujaim and Karim Amer
“20 Feet from Stardom” Nominees to be determined

 

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT

 

“CaveDigger” Jeffrey Karoff
“Facing Fear” Jason Cohen
“Karama Has No Walls” Sara Ishaq
“The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life” Malcolm Clarke and Nicholas Reed
“Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall” Edgar Barens

 

BEST FILM EDITING

 

“American Hustle” Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers and Alan Baumgarten
“Captain Phillips” Christopher Rouse
“Dallas Buyers Club” John Mac McMurphy and Martin Pensa
“Gravity” Alfonso Cuarón and Mark Sanger
“12 Years a Slave” Joe Walker

 

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

 

“The Broken Circle Breakdown” Belgium
“The Great Beauty” Italy
“The Hunt” Denmark
“The Missing Picture” Cambodia
“Omar” Palestine

 

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

 

“Dallas Buyers Club” Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews
“Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa” Stephen Prouty
“The Lone Ranger” Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

 

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

 

John Williams, “The Book Thief”
Steven Price, “Gravity”
William Butler and Owen Pallett, “Her”
Alexandre Desplat, “Philomena”
Thomas Newman, “Saving Mr. Banks”

 

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

 

“Alone Yet Not Alone” from “Alone Yet Not Alone”
Music by Bruce Broughton; Lyric by Dennis Spiegel

 

“Happy” from “Despicable Me 2”
Music and Lyric by Pharrell Williams

 

“Let It Go” from “Frozen”
Music and Lyric by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez

 

“The Moon Song” from “Her”
Music by Karen O; Lyric by Karen O and Spike Jonze

 

“Ordinary Love” from “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom”
Music by Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen; Lyric by Paul Hewson

 

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

 

“American Hustle”
Production Design: Judy Becker; Set Decoration: Heather Loeffler

 

“Gravity”
Production Design: Andy Nicholson; Set Decoration: Rosie Goodwin and Joanne Woollard

 

“The Great Gatsby”
Production Design: Catherine Martin; Set Decoration: Beverley Dunn

 

“Her”
Production Design: K.K. Barrett; Set Decoration: Gene Serdena

 

“12 Years a Slave”
Production Design: Adam Stockhausen; Set Decoration: Alice Baker

 

BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM

 

“Feral” Daniel Sousa and Dan Golden
“Get a Horse!” Lauren MacMullan and Dorothy McKim
“Mr. Hublot” Laurent Witz and Alexandre Espigares
“Possessions” Shuhei Morita
“Room on the Broom” Max Lang and Jan Lachauer

 

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM

 

“Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me)” Esteban Crespo
“Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just before Losing Everything)” Xavier Legrand and Alexandre Gavras
“Helium” Anders Walter and Kim Magnusson
“Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)” Selma Vilhunen and Kirsikka Saari
“The Voorman Problem” Mark Gill and Baldwin Li

 

BEST SOUND EDITING

 

“All Is Lost” Steve Boeddeker and Richard Hymns
“Captain Phillips” Oliver Tarney
“Gravity” Glenn Freemantle
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” Brent Burge
“Lone Survivor” Wylie Stateman

 

BEST SOUND MIXING

 

“Captain Phillips” Chris Burdon, Mark Taylor, Mike Prestwood Smith and Chris Munro
“Gravity” Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead and Chris Munro
“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” Christopher Boyes, Michael Hedges, Michael Semanick and Tony Johnson
“Inside Llewyn Davis” Skip Lievsay, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland
“Lone Survivor” Andy Koyama, Beau Borders and David Brownlow

 

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

 

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January 14th, 2014 - Barbara Thompson

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‘Lone Survivor’ massively over performs

January 13th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Peter Berg’s ‘Lone Survivor’, starring Mark Wahlberg and Emile Hirsch, grossed a stunning $38.5m upon going wide to easily win the North American weekend box office.  A combination of solid reviews and an outstanding ‘A+’ CinemaScore fuelled word of mouth as the Afghan war drama almost doubled studio estimates.  It had previously played in the speciality market to secure qualification for this year’s Oscars.

 

Meanwhile, ‘The Legend of Hercules’ opened with a poor $8.6m over the three days in line with already low market forecasts.  And a disappointing ‘B-‘ CinemaScore would suggest a comparatively short shelf life for the fantasy adventure against a $70m budget.cialis pills cialis 3 day pill generic cialis ranbaxy cialis for sale in us price cialis 20mg cialis 30 oral suspension buying generic cialis online safe

Future My Love and the Modernist documentary

January 12th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Modernism is alive and kicking within documentary filmmaking and can be found in the experimental debut feature of Maja Borg, ‘Future My Love’.

 

And stylistically it works very well.  A verbal letter replaces a traditional commentary, which is less arbitrary than Chris Marker’s Sans Soleil but will, nevertheless, draw comparisons.  Diverse contemporary interviews, poetic footage and archival material seamlessly blend into a non-linear narrative that sits on the cusp of artistic vision and political statement.  And there is a nod to Alain Resnais with scenes and voice overs repeated at surprising times but it adds clarity to the main thrust of Borg’s argument rather than infusing the text with ‘Last Year in Marienbad’ style ambiguity; a necessary ploy for the documentary format.

 

Here, the Modernist devices serve and frame a meditation/reflection on new beginnings at a personal and global level with Borg pulling together two threads; the demise of her relationship with Italian actress Nadya Cazan and the fall of our outmoded monetary system.  The letter becomes a valediction to both and Borg explores a replacement that takes us to the futuristic theories of the quirky inventor/alternative thinker, Jacque Fresco.

 

How unfortunate, then, that the film’s subject is not really worthy of its formal and stylistic ingenuity.

 

Fresco’s Venus Project is a prototype of sorts for a new society that can only come into being once Capitalism fails – there is no acknowledgement to Marx but perhaps Fresco/Borg consider the ‘M’ word too provocative; particularly for American audiences.  He extols the virtue of cooperation and community over competition and individualism – nothing wrong with that – but it all goes horribly wrong with his solution for a money free alternative.  Wait for it – Fresco proposes that we surrender control to computers for organising our economy and producing food and other resources – via 3D printing – whilst we put our feet up and enjoy a new Golden Age where the concept of ownership does not exist.  It’s an obvious recipe for a dystopian nightmare of genetic and social engineering that sounds more like a synopsis for a sci-fi ‘B’ movie than a serious theory.

 

But Fresco is right about one thing.  Limited resources will eventually end the economic cycles that have repeatedly bailed out our chronically flawed Capitalism – the ever decreasing circles of financial ruin and the political manifestos of self-deluding deceit/mythology.  Fresco’s proposals may be as absurd and dangerous as Social Darwinism at the other end of the scale, but we need a new plan A and we need it now.buy cialis online overnight delivery cialis 90 day supply lowest cost for cialis order cialis pills generic cialis with dapoxetine price cialis for daily use discount cialis coupon

Navy SEAL drama excels at the domestic box office

January 12th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Peter Berg’s ‘Lone Survivor’, starring Mark Wahlberg as real life war hero, Marcus Luttrell, massively exceeded studio and market predictions by grossing a mighty $14.4m on Friday at the North American box office.  The Navy SEAL drama went wide in 2,876 theatres on Friday after a brief period in the speciality market to secure qualification for this year’s Oscars and has a shot at hitting the $40m mark over the three days.  It received strong reviews and an outstanding ‘A+’ CinemaScore from first night audiences.

 

This weekend’s only wide release, ‘The Legend of Hercules’ earned $3m on Friday in line with already low market expectations.  It’s ‘B-‘ CinemaScore will further dampen word of mouth and the action adventure is set to fall short of $10m against an approximate $70m budget.pricing for cialis cialis fedex overnight shipping cost of cialis in dubai buying cialis craigslist purchase cialis uk cost of cialis at sam’s club cialis sale philippines

‘Lone Survivor’ heading for No.1 at North American box office

January 11th, 2014 - Graham Eley

‘Lone Survivor’ goes wide in North America this weekend after a brief spell in the speciality market to secure qualification for this year’s Oscars.

 

Universal had high expectations for the Navy SEAL drama and it seems set to deliver after receiving strong reviews, 51% of Fandango’s weekend’s advance ticket sales and a lively $1.5m from 1811 theatres during Thursday’s late night screenings.

 

It expanded to 2,876 theatres on Friday and early estimates are pointing to an exceptional weekend haul in excess of $35m.generic cialis pharmacy cialis price with prescription cialis online 20mg cialis zoloft best price genuine cialis where to purchase cialis online cheap cialis sydney

SPC picks up ‘Magic In The Moonlight’

January 11th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Sony Picture Classics will collaborate with Woody Allen for the seventh time after acquiring North American rights to his next feature, ‘Magic In The Moonlight’.  Allen returns to the Jazz Age – this time set on the French Riviera – for a comedy that combines mystery and romance.  An intriguing ensemble cast includes Emma Stone, Colin Firth, Jacki Weaver and Eileen Atkins.generic cialis 50 mg cialis cost in usacialis online genuinecialis 20 mg sale generic cialis malaysia order cialis professional online cialis free delivery

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January 8th, 2014 - Barbara Thompson

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Jane Campion heads Cannes jury

January 8th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Jane Campion will lead the jury at the 67th Cannes Film Festival, which runs from May 14-25.  It remains to be seen whether Cannes will adopt a similar approach with the selection of the main competition where women filmmakers have been hopelessly underrepresented in the past.  Ironically, Campion’s win with ‘The Piano’ remains the one and only time that a woman filmmaker has received the Palme d’Or.order cialis online with mastercard cialis sales online australia cialis online 40mg purchase discount cialis online cialis price increase 2014 cialis for sale mexico buying real cialis online

Close battle at the top

January 6th, 2014 - Graham Eley

‘The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug’ narrowly defeated ‘Frozen’ to win the international weekend box office after four weekends in play.

 

The Middle Earth sequel grossed a further $58m from 62 markets, with Russia being its strongest territory on $9.6m.  It has now taken a strong $527m internationally and, after factoring in North America, $756m worldwide.

 

Disney’s ‘Frozen’ is still active in 49 territories after six weekends in play.  The animation comedy added $52m over the three days, taking its international and worldwide totals to $342.1m and $639.9m respectively.buy cialis 40 mg cialis shipping can you purchase cialis online cialis everyday price cost of cialis 2.5 mg buy cialis london cheap cialis soft

Critics have different outlook

January 6th, 2014 - Graham Eley

National Society of Film Critics gave the Coen Brothers’ ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ a boost after a week when the influential producers and writing guilds snubbed the indie comedy.  It is unlikely to have an impact on the wider awards season but the Society’s 48th annual awards gave it best film, director, cinematographer (Bruno Delbonnel) and actor (Oscar Isaac).  Delbonnel looks the film’s best – and perhaps only – bet for an Oscar nomination.

 

WINNERS:

 

Picture: “Inside Llewyn Davis” (23)
Runners-up: “American Hustle” (17); “12 Years a Slave” (16); “Her” (16)

 

Director: Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis” (25)
Runners-up: Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity” (18); Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave” (15)

 

Actor: Oscar Isaac, “Inside Llewyn Davis” (28)
Runners-up: Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave” (19); Robert Redford, “All Is Lost” (12)

 

Actress: Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine” (57)
Runners-up: Adele Exarchopoulos, “Blue Is the Warmest Color” (36); Julie Delpy, “Before Midnight” (26)

 

Supporting actor: James Franco, “Spring Breakers” (24)
Runners-up: Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club” (20); Barkhad Abdi, “Captain Phillips” (14)

 

Supporting actress: Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle” (54)
Runners-up: Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave” (38); Sally Hawkins, “Blue Jasmine” (18); Lea Seydoux, “Blue Is the Warmest Color” (18)

 

Screenplay: Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, “Before Midnight” (29)
Runners-up: 
Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis” (26); Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell, “American Hustle” (18)

 

Foreign-language film: “Blue Is the Warmest Color” (27)
Runners-up: “A Touch of Sin” (21); “The Great Beauty” (15)

 

Nonfiction: “The Act of Killing” and “At Berkeley” (tie, 20)
Runner-up: “Leviathan” (18)

 

Cinematography: Bruno Delbonnel, “Inside Llewyn Davis” (28)
Runners-up: Emmanuel Lubezki, “Gravity” (26); Phedon Papamichael, “Nebraska” (17)

 

Film Still Awaiting U.S. Distribution: “Stray Dogs” and “Hide Your Smiling Faces”
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Franchise spin off takes a slight lead

January 5th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Paramount’s low budget horror, ‘Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones’, grossed $8.7m on its Friday opening at the North American box office.  The franchise spin off received a poor ‘C’ CinemaScore, which could damage word of mouth but Paramount would have expected a short run in any event.  Taking into account the usual Friday front loading for the horror genre, it should finish the weekend just below the $20m mark.  This falls short of the studio’s somewhat unrealistic forecasts.

 

Although ‘The Marked Ones’ led the way on Friday night, Disney’s resilient ‘Frozen’ was nicely poised to take over once the family audiences arrived on Saturday and Sunday.  It picked up a healthy $6.7m on Friday and should finish the weekend around $24m as the film approaches an outstanding $300m domestically.

 

Last weekend’s No. 1,’ The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’, earned a further $5.1m on Friday in third place but from 198 fewer theatres.  It is likely to continue at the same pace during the remainder of the weekend.

 

The overall box office is on a par with the corresponding session last year notwithstanding the extreme bad weather.order cialis online in canada cialis keeps you hard online cialis us cialis price target generic cialis online cheap cialis online price comparison purchase cialis ireland

SPC acquires foreign-language Oscar contender

January 5th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Sony Pictures Classics have acquired North American distribution rights to Janos Szasz’s sixth feature, ‘The Notebook’, winner of the Crystal Globe at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival and shortlisted for a foreign-language Oscar.  It is an adaptation of Agota Kristof’s renowned debut novel in which Ulrich Thomsen and Ulrich Matthes play the young twins struggling to survive during the Second World War.  Szasz is best known for his critically acclaimed cinematic version of Georg Büchner’s play ‘Woyzeck’.buy cialis with dapoxetine order cialis greece order cialis in uk order cialis online reviews without prescription cialis cialis buy paypal cialis price nz

‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ receives another blow

January 4th, 2014 - Graham Eley

Coen Bros’ ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ seems all but out of this year’s best film Oscar race as the Writers Guild of America became the second major award in consecutive days to follow the Screen Actors Guild in snubbing the indie comedy.

 

Unlike the Producers Guild of America’s awards, which made its nominations yesterday, the WGA does not have a ready made equivalent to the best film Oscar.  Its top prize is split in two – best original and adapted screenplays – being a similar format to the Golden Globes.  And the Guild’s members do not treat them as best film awards in all but name although, for obvious reasons, they are more likely to place greater emphasis on the script when judging best film than voters elsewhere.

 

It also has strict rules that can further distort the picture.  No more so than this year where the Oscar frontrunner, ’12 Years a Slave’, is ineligible as writer, John Ridley, is only a non-voting member – daft.  ‘Philomena’ and ‘Fruitvale Station’ are amongst other films not in contention.

 

Notwithstanding that, the best original screenplay category was still crowded. All five nominees received PGA best producer/film nominations, including ‘Her’, which did well in the original screenplay category during the pre-Christmas critics awards and two almost certain Oscar best film and original screenplay nominees, ‘American Hustle’ and ‘Nebraska’.  The other two, ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ and ‘Blue Jasmine’, could receive best film Oscar nominations if the list was long and they might prove to be in competition for one place.  ‘Blue Jasmine’, in particular, is also in the mix for an Oscar original screenplay nom.

 

The overhyped but serious award season contender, ‘Gravity’, which, frankly, suffered from a tired and hackneyed script, quite rightly missed out.  As did another feature with some support within the industry, the more worthy ‘Saving Mr. Banks’.  Both films received PGA best producer/film noms.

 

The best adapted screenplay category is less top heavy with award season contenders; particularly as ’12 Years a Slave’ and ‘Philomena’ would have fallen into it.  ‘Captain Phillips’ and ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ were a forgone conclusion and ‘August: Osage County’ and ‘Before Midnight’ will compete for adapted Oscar nominations even though they remain long shots for best film.  The fifth nominee, Peter Berg’s ‘Lone Survivor’ came from nowhere and will probably not be heard of again this awards season.purchase real cialis online buying cialis cheap buy cialis with discover card how to purchase cialis online purchase cialis australia cialis buy usa cheap cialis drug

Producers Guild of America announce nominations

January 3rd, 2014 - Graham Eley

Todays nominations for the Producers Guild of America awards provided the clearest evidence so far of how the Oscar race is taking shape.  As expected, the ‘outstanding producer’ nominations – the PGA’s equipment to the Oscars’ best film – included frontrunners 12 Years a Slave, Gravity, American Hustle and Nebraska.  Nobody will be raising their eyebrows with the inclusion of Captain Phillips, which was always likely to receive more support from the industry than the critics, along with the award season’s surprise package, Her and Martin Scorsese’s controversial but well supported Wolf of Wall Street.  The other three nominees – Blue Jasmine, Dallas Buyers Club and Saving Mr. Banks – were less clear cut and give a strong indication of those best placed in the chasing pack.  But, as often the way, it is the exclusions that make the headlines and the Coen Bros’ Inside Llewyn Davis’ failure to secure a nomination is a major shock.

 

NOMINATIONS:

 

The Darryl F. Zanuck Award for Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion Pictures:

 

American Hustle (Columbia Pictures)
Producers: Megan Ellison, Jon Gordon, Charles Roven, Richard Suckle

 

Blue Jasmine (Sony Pictures Classics)
Producers: Letty Aronson, Stephen Tenenbaum

 

Captain Phillips (Columbia Pictures)
Producers: Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca, Scott Rudin

 

Dallas Buyers Club (Focus Features)
Producers: Robbie Brenner, Rachel Winter

 

Gravity (Warner Bros. Pictures)
Producers: Alfonso Cuarón, David Heyman

 

Her (Warner Bros. Pictures)
Producers: Megan Ellison, Spike Jonze, Vincent Landay

 

Nebraska (Paramount Pictures)
Producers: Albert Berger, Ron Yerxa

 

Saving Mr. Banks (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
Producers: Ian Collie, Alison Owen, Philip Steuer

 

12 Years a Slave (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
Producers: Anthony Katagas, Jeremy Kleiner, Steve McQueen, Brad Pitt & Dede Gardner

 

Wolf of Wall Street (Paramount Pictures)
Producers: Riza Aziz, Emma Koskoff, Joey McFarland

 

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures:

 

The Croods (DreamWorks Animation)
Producers: Kristine Belson, Jane Hartwell

 

Despicable Me 2 (Universal Pictures)
Producers: Janet Healy, Chris Meledandri

 

Epic (Twentieth Century Fox)
Producers: Jerry Davis, Lori Forte

 

Frozen (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
Producer: Peter Del Vecho

 

Monsters University (Pixar Animation)
Producer: Kori Rae

 

The Award for Outstanding Producer of Documentary Theatrical Motion Pictures:

 

A Place At The Table (Magnolia Pictures)
Producers: Julie Goldman, Ryan Harrington, Kristi Jacobson, Lori Silverbush

 

Far Out Isn’t Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story (First Run Features)
Producers: Brad Bernstein, Rick Cikowski

 

Life According To Sam (HBO Documentary Films)
Producers: Andrea Nix Fine, Sean Fine, Miriam Weintraub

 

We Steal Secrets: The Story Of Wikileaks (Focus Features)
Producers: Alexis Bloom, Alex Gibney, Marc Shmuger

 

Which Way Is The Front Line From Here?  The Life And Time Of Tim Hetherington(HBO Documentary Films)
Producers: James Brabazon, Nick Quested

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Release date for ‘Under the Skin’

January 1st, 2014 - Graham Eley

Jonathan Glazer’s idiosyncratic sci-fi drama, ‘Under the Skin’, split the critics at the last Venice International Film Festival with some calling for it to win the Golden Lion and others critical of its competition selection.  Audiences will be able to judge for themselves when the film rolls out next year and A24 Films have now set a North American release date of April 4th.  Scarlett Johansson plays a troubled alien preying on unsuspecting men where all is not what it first seems.order lasix overnight delivery
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Slight increase for North American box office

January 1st, 2014 - Graham Eley

The North American box office grossed $10.763b for the year ending December 29, 2013 being a 0.8% ($90m) increase on the corresponding period last year.  These figures are in line with market predictions but analysts will withhold judgement until the National Association of Theatre Owners release attendance figures and ticket price data in the New Year.  The impact of premium price tickets will be of particular interest in assessing future trends.lasix cheap
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Slight increase for North American box office

January 1st, 2014 - Graham Eley

The North American box office grossed $10.763b for the year ending December 29, 2013 being a 0.8% ($90m) increase on the corresponding period last year.  These figures are in line with market predictions but analysts will withhold judgement until the National Association of Theatre Owners release attendance figures and ticket price data in the New Year.  The impact of premium price tickets will be of particular interest in assessing future trends.generic lasix names
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End of an era at Warners

January 1st, 2014 - Graham Eley

January will witness the end of an era when Barry Meyer takes his final bow as chairman of Warner Bros.

 

Meyer, who has been with Warners for 42 years, became chairman and CEO just before the new millennium after a five year stint as EVP and COO.  Against the background of industry turbulence, Meyer has succeeded in making a mark across the board and, to name but a few, his achievements include developing the ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘The Dark Knight’ franchises, running a highly profitable TV arm and restoring stability to the studio following the problematic OAL merger.

 

Meyer agreed to remain as chairman for a transitional period after relinquishing the CEO position to Kevin Tsujihara last March.  Tsujihara will now expand his role to include the chairman duties.

 

In a sign of the times, neither man came from a film industry background.  Meyer made his name in TV production and Tsujihara specialises in online distribution.lasix 20 mg price
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