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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Behind the Visual Effects on Black Swan

    Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan is one of those movies that is creepy, scary, believable and psychologically taut partly because he deploys 250 visual effects shots to such good effect. They aren't obvious, or on a big-budget scale. While we probably figured out that Nina morphing into a Black Swan at the film's finale is a visual effect (the most complex in the film), most of the film's effects are far more subtle.

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  • SydneysBuzz
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    Sandi Dubowski at Sundance

    Sandi Dubowski is in Sundance co-hosting a Good Pitch Party (see below) and mentions that, "btw, I got a development grant from a new film fund, Catapult for my project and will be holding meetings at Sundance to raise matching funds for my next film, Soul Trainer." Soul Trainer follows the dramatic life story of Amichai Lau-Lavie whose uncle is the former Chief Rabbi of Israel and who is descended from 37 generations of rabbis to King David. Amichai is Jewish royalty, a link in a 5,771 year-old ancient chain, but he is also the creator of a Hasidic female performance character.His Trembling Before G-d and next film, A Jihad for Love dealt with the delicate details of being homosexual or lesbian in strict fundamentalist religions which prohibit non-heterosexual behavior. His life ever since has revolved around workshops around the world dealing with these issues and has moved into other transcultural issues as in Budrus. Trembling Before G-d Jihad for Love Budrus written and directed by Julia Bacha

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  • The Lost Boys
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    "Dogtooth" For The Win

    Landed in Utah to find the Academy's foreign language committee made an uncharacteristically awesome decision and included Yorgos Lanthimos's disturbingly innovative, hard to watch but soo rewarding "Dogtooth" - one of my favourite films of 2010 - in its foreign language film shortlist. Whether it makes the final cut or not (which is very unlikely), it's nice to see the film make it this far and my fingers are very crossed for "Dogooth" being announced next Tuesday morning.

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  • The Playlist
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    Updated: Keira Knightley Replacing Marion Cotillard In David Cronenberg's 'Cosmopolis'?

    Has Paul Giamatti Moved On Too?Well, we were once pretty excited for David Cronenberg's "Cosmopolis," but with the cast being switched out wholesale, our expectations have diminished. With Robert Pattinson replacing Colin Farrell earlier in the month, it suddenly didn't make much sense to have the previously attached female Marion Cotillard still on board to play his wife (she's ten years his senior). And so no surprise, it looks like she's been replaced too.

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  • The Playlist
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    New Looks At 'Green Lantern' & 'Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides'

    A few new pics from some big summer releases have hit to hopefully tide you over.

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  • The Playlist
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    'Company Men' Director John Wells Talks Scaling Back Melodrama To Be Truthful

    John Wells has had the kind of career most people can only dream about -- he's worked on phenomenally popular television series like "China Beach," "ER," and "The West Wing" (he served as the show-runner after creator Aaron Sorkin left the series), while also shepherding more esoteric film projects to the big screen, like Todd Haynes' "I'm Not There" and "Far From Heaven," Mark Romanek's "One Hour Photo," and even John Waters' "A Dirty Shame." (In addition to all of this, he's the head of the Writer's Guild of America's West Coast branch.) But he's never directed a feature film himself, until "The Company Men," a drama about the 2008 economic collapse -- and the people caught in it -- which stars Tommy Lee Jones, Ben Affleck, Craig T. Nelson, Chris Cooper, Kevin Costner and Maria Bello. After a brief Oscar-qualifying run in December, the movie opens wide this weekend. We talked to Wells about the difficulties in making a feelgood film about the recession, what it was like to work with superstar cinematographer Roger Deakins, and how the real-life experiences of people both informed the film and enriched it after its completion.

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  • SydneysBuzz
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    We Were Here at Sundance

    An Interview with David WeissmanSundance official 'Meet the Fillmmaker' WE WERE HERE is a powerful new documentary that takes a deep and reflective look back at the arrival and impact of AIDS in San Francisco in 1981 and at a community that came together to respond to the crisis with love, compassion, and determination. It screens at the Broadway Centre Cinemas V in Salt Lake City at 3:45pm on Sunday, Jan. 23 as part of the Sundance Film Festival, where it will show five additonal times in Park City as part of the Documentary Competition.This is a film which reaches out and touches the audience without any banging on the drum. It leaves people feeling inspired and validated. Seeing how the community rose to the occasion allows the audience to share their power to act, to get through the storm and to come out on the other side with a greater sense of direction and engagement.

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  • The Playlist
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    'John Carter Of Mars' Faces 'Prometheus,' 'Frankenweenie' Moves To Fall In 2012 Date Shifts

    While everyone is still picking their jaws up off the floor from the latest round of "The Dark Knight Rises" casting, Disney has quietly gone ahead and shifted the release dates for two of their major 2012 tentpoles, and they're making some bold moves.

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  • The Playlist
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    Academy Reveals 9 Remaining Oscar Foreign Film Nominees; 'Biutiful,' 'Incendies,' 'Dogtooth' & More

    So, will the Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Film this year be the provocative and daring Greek entry "Dogtooth"? Somehow we doubt it, but we're glad and somewhat surprised that the film has made it this far, landing in the nine shortlisted films of which four will be dropped off when the final five for the Oscar nominations are announced.

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  • SydneysBuzz
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    Oscar® Watch: Even the Rain (From Spain): Revised January 19th: I'm Rooting For This Underdog

    See the trailer here. Today January 19, as the Shortlist for Best Foreign Language Submissions for Nomination is announced, I find myself rooting for Tambien la Lluvia for its brave subject matter and ambitious storytelling. But I must admit that the reason I am not rooting for for Denis Villeneuve’s “Incendies, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s “Biutiful", Susanne Bier’s Golden Globe winner “In a Better World, and Yorgos Lanthimos’s “Dogtooth,” is because I have not seen them! I've heard great things about them though. Nor have I seen Algeria's “Hors la Loi” (“Outside the Law”), Rachid Bouchareb, director; Japan's “Confessions,” Tetsuya Nakashima, director; South Africa's “Life, above All,” Oliver Schmitz, director; or Sweden's “Simple Simon,” Andreas Ohman, director. (Too many meetings at festivals and no invitations to private screenings I guess.) I will see two at least here at Sundance in the World Cinema Section. Maybe I can catch the others in Berlin.

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