DAILY NEWS: Magnolia Taking Shape; Sunshine Rises; and Golden Globes and Film Society at 10
by Eugene Hernandez, Anthony Kaufman and Maud Kersnowski/indieWIRE
>> Magnolia Pictures in Motion; New Acquisition, Festival Programming, and Exhibition
by Anthony Kaufman/indieWIRE
(indieWIRE/12.21.01) -- Magnolia Pictures, the new outfit launched recently
by Eamonn Bowles, has announced a round of new acquisitions and activities.
Yesterday, Bowles confirmed two additional titles for the company's 2002
release schedule, Israeli hit and Cannes 2001 world premiere, "Late
Marriage," directed by Dover Koshashvili, and Harry Shearer's comedy, "Teddy Bear's Picnic." This brings their slate to three titles, following last week announced acquisition of Larry Fessenden's "Wendigo," a pact made along with ContentFilm.
Bowles also confirmed that Magnolia (which includes staffer Ryan Werner,
another Shooting Gallery vet) will be programming the first annual Tribeca
Film Festival in early May. Balancing nightly high-profile movies with
smaller pictures throughout the five days of screenings, Bowles commented
of his programming plans, "I'd much rather have a good film than a world
In addition to distribution and programming, Bowles also fixed the date for
the company's first foray into exhibition: Magnolia's inaugural theater, one
planned among many, will open in Dallas on Jan. 11. The new facility will
have five screens, with four showing specialized releases and one devoted to
a calendar of more esoteric titles, according to Bowles, including
Kieslowski's "Decalogue" and Rialto re-releases such as "Rififi" and "Bob La Flambeur." [Anthony Kaufman]
>> Here Comes the Sunshine Cinema...
by Maud Kersnowski/indieWIRE
(indieWIRE/12.21.01) -- The lives of New York's moviegoers is a little
brighter today with the opening of Landmark's Sunshine Cinema on Houston and Second Avenue. The Sunshine is first New York theater to combine an
independent/foreign film venue with all the creature comforts of the mammoth
multiplexes, such as stadium seating, super comfortable seats and large
screens. The new five-screener will continue the art-house tradition of
cappuccino and gourmet baked goods.
Built in 1898 as a Yiddish vaudeville house, the building was later
converted to play moving pictures. For the last 50 years the Sunshine served
as a hardware warehouse. The building has now been restored by the Landmark
theater chain and their partners, Sunshine Amalgamedia. In stark contrast to
the cramped quarters of the modernist art-houses in town, like the Angelika
a few blocks away, the newly opened Sunshine recalls the spacious
turn-of-the-century palace it once was. Much of the original facade has been
retained. A two-story half circle of windows rising over the Sunshine sign
allows light to pour inside onto the blend of modern design elements and
rescued original details like exposed brick and rubble stone foundations.
The Sunshine will be in direct competition with the legendary Angelika, but
Landmark's management claims there's more than enough business in the
neighborhood to go around. "We believe that that area is under screened. We
know that it's very competitive. We're going to be arm wrestling for films
[with the Angelika]," Landmark CEO and President Paul Richardson told
indieWIRE. "Our advantage is that we have the newest place. It's a great
place to see movies." Landmark also owns 52 other cinemas across the
country. Next up, according to Richardson is the renovation of a theater in
Westwood Village on the outskirts of UCLA. It is expected to open early next
year. [Maud Kersnowski]
>> "Moulin Rouge," "In the Bedroom" Among Top Nominees for Golden Globe Awards
(indieWIRE/12.20.01) -- Yesterday's Golden Globe nominations from the
Hollywood Foreign Press Association were spread among the short list of
titles that have dominated other year-end lists: "In the Bedroom," "The Man
Who Wasn't There," "Mulholland Drive," "Iris," not to mention a number of top nominations for "Moulin Rouge."
Leading New York independent production company Good Machine is back in
competition for a Best Picture award, following last year's "Crouching
Tiger," with "In The Bedroom." The first feature from writer/director Todd
Field was also recognized with nods to lead actress Sissy Spacek and
supporting actress Marisa Tomei. "In the Bedroom" is up against "A Beautiful
Mind," "The Lord of the Rings," "The Man Who Wasn't There," and "Mulholland Drive" in the Best Motion Picture - Drama" category.
In the Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy category "Moulin Rouge" is
facing "Bridget Jones Diary," "Gosford Park," "Legally Blonde," and the animated, "Shrek." "Moulin Rouge" was also recognized in numerous other
categories, including a best director nomination for Baz Luhrmann, lead
acting nods for Ewan McGregor and Nicole Kidman and nominations for original score and original song.
Others nominated in the Best Director category are Robert Altman for
"Gosford Park" (which received 5 nominations), Ron Howard for "A Beautiful
Mind" (which received 6 nominations), Peter Jackson for "The Lord of the
Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring," David Lynch for "Mulholland Drive," and
Steven Spielberg for "A.I." In the screenplay category, Joel & Ethan Coen were hailed for "The Man Who Wasn't There," along with Julian Fellowes for "Gosford Park," Akiva Goldsman for "A Beautiful Mind," David Lynch for "Mulholland Drive," and Christopher Nolan for "Memento."
In the Best Foreign Language Film category, "Amelie" (France) is nominated
along with "Behind the Sun" (Brazil), "Monsoon Wedding" (India), "No Man's Land" (Bosnia) and "Y Tu Mama Tambien" (Mexico).
"Hedwig and the Angry Inch," a favorite at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival, also nabbed a nomination from the Hollywood Foreign Press; writer/director
and star John Cameron Mitchell was nominated for Best Performance by an
Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy. The annual Golden Globes will be
televised nationally on January 20th, the day that the 2002 Sundance Film
Festival comes to a close. [Eugene Hernandez]
>> 10 Years of The Film Society
(indieWIRE/12.21.01) -- The Film Society of Lincoln Center will celebrate
its tenth anniversary next month with a series of "best of" screenings.
Among the fourteen films set to show at the Walter Reade Theater January 2 -
9, 2002 are Michael Powell's "A Matter of Life and Death" (1946), Robert Aldrich's "Kiss Me Deadly" (1955), Olivier Assayas' "Cold Water" (1994), Hou Hsiao-hsien's "Goodbye South, Goodbye" (1996), Jacques Rivette's "L'Amour fou" (1968), Max Ophuls' "Flirtation" (1932), and Youssef Chahine's "Destiny" (1997).
The Film Society's first screening, on December 9, 1991, was a showing of
Stanley Donen's "On the Town." [Eugene Hernandez]