Showing posts with label Francis Ford Coppola. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Francis Ford Coppola. Show all posts

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Review: "American Graffiti" is Still Crusin' to Rock 'n' Roll 50 Years On

TRASH IN MY EYE No. 45 of 2023 (No. 1934) by Leroy Douresseaux

American Graffiti (1973)
Running time:  110 minutes (1 hour, 50 minutes)
MPAA – PG
DIRECTOR:  George Lucas
WRITERS:  George Lucas and Gloria Katz & Willard Huyck
PRODUCERS:  Francis Ford Coppola and Gary Kurtz
CINEMATOGRAPHERS:  Jan D'Alquen (D.o.P.) and Ron Eveslage (D.o.P.)
EDITORS:  Verna Fields and Marcia Lucas
Academy Award nominee

DRAMA/HISTORICAL/MUSIC

Starring:  Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat, Charles Martin Smith, Cindy Williams, Candy Clark, Mackenzie Phillips, Wolfman Jack, Bo Hopkins, Manuel Padilla Jr., Beau Gentry, and Harrison Ford

American Graffiti is a 1973 coming-of-age, music-driven, comedy and drama film directed by George Lucas.  Lucas, who co-wrote the screenplay with the husband and wife team of Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz, based the story on his experiences in the cruising, and street-racing, and rock 'n' roll cultures of his youth.  American Graffiti focuses on a group of teenagers and their adventures over the course of one summer night in 1962.

American Graffiti opens in the Summer 1962.  The location is California's central valley, apparently in and around the city of Modesto.  There, through a series of vignettes, we watch as a group of teenagers enjoy the last evening of their summer vacation.

For recent high school graduates and friends, Curtis “Curt” Henderson (Richard Dreyfuss) and Steve Bolander (Ronny Howard), this is their last night in town before they board a plane the next day and go “back east” for college.  Steve doesn't believe that he can achieve the goals his wants by staying home, even if leaving means parting from his girlfriend, Curt's sister, Laurie (Cindy Williams).  However, Curt, who has recently received scholarship money from a local business group, isn't sure that he wants to leave.  Besides, tonight, he wants to chase the mystery woman who has caught his eye, a blonde driving a white Ford Thunderbird.

Curt and Steve's two friends are also having a big night.  The first is John Milner (Paul Le Mat), the central valley drag-racing king.  He has just learned that someone wants to challenge him for his crown, a confident ladies' man named Bob Falfa (Harrison Ford).  Meanwhile, the second character is the unpopular, but well-meaning Terry “The Toad” Fields (Charlie Martin Smith), who has just come into possession of Steve's car.  He is supposed to protect it until Steve returns from “back east” for Christmas.  Tonight, however, Terry hopes the car will help him land a date.  Meanwhile, in the background, the popular disc jockey, Wolfman Jack (himself), plays an array of rock 'n' roll hits.

As “DVD Netflix” prepares to shutdown, I've been racing to catch up on certain films that I have never seen or have not seen in a long time.  I recently decided to sample some films in which 2023 is the fiftieth anniversary of their original theatrical releases.  That includes such films as Walt Disney's Robin Hood, (hopefully)Woody Allen's Sleeper, and the Bruce Lee classic, Enter the Dragon.

As a kid, I was aware of American Graffiti long before I ever saw it.  I was and still am a huge fan of American Graffiti director, George Lucas's most famous film, Star Wars (1977).  So, as a kid, I read every article I could find about Star Wars, and they often mentioned his two earlier feature-length films, THX-1138 (1971) and American Graffiti.  [I also vaguely remember the release of the sequel, More American Graffiti.]

I also knew that a few film and television stars that I liked had starred or appeared in American Graffiti, specifically Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, and Harrison Ford.  Besides that fact that American Graffiti was a George Lucas movie, Ford was the other reason I most wanted to see the film.

I finally first saw American Graffiti on television, and though my memory is hazy on the facts, I'm sure I saw it at least a few years after the release of the sequel.  I remember liking it, enough that I planned on watching it again.  Decades later, this recent viewing is the first time that I've seen the film since that first viewing.

I still like it a lot.  I'm still a fan of Ford, Howard, and Dreyfuss, and along the way, I became a fan of some of its other young stars, including Charles Martin Smith, Cindy Williams, and the recently-deceased Bo Hopkins (1938-2022).  The truth is that I'm crazy about the Hollywood icon, Harrison Ford, and, as for as I'm concerned, any movie with Ron Howard and Charles Martin Smith as actors is cinematic porn.  [Both Howard and Smith are also film directors.]

Watching the film this time, I was initially annoyed by Lucas' method of telling this story in a series of vignettes that constantly moved from one character to the next.  The film essentially has four plots that revolve around one of four characters, Curt, Steve, John, or Terry.  It took me nearly half the film to realize that the vignettes allow Lucas to depict and to reveal each one of these four young men's goals, conflicts, and fears.  This depiction of their inner selves makes them more interesting to me.  Not only did I root for them, but I also wanted to know more about them.  I wanted to know what was going to happen to them, both in the immediate and far future.

American Graffiti apparently helped launch a wave of nostalgia for and interest in the culture and times of the 1950s and early 1960s or at least an idealized, trouble free, white-washed version of it.  The film apparently renewed the ABC network's interest in what would become one of its most popular sitcoms, “Happy Days” (1974-84).  That long-running and popular television series also presented an idealized, trouble free, white-washed version of the 1950s and early 1960s.

Thus, as much as I enjoyed this viewing of American Graffiti, and as much as I'm interested in its characters, I done with it.  I'm not done with its lovely soundtrack – played in the background so that both the characters and audiences can hear these early classics of rock 'n' roll.  These musical recordings make this special night in the summer of 1962 really special.  Still, American Graffiti is an ode to George Lucas' memories.  It is a cinematic dream he fashioned from the varied experiences of his privileged youth.  I don't really relate to it the way I do other films that are also far from my experiences – such as The Best Years of Our Lives (1946) or Licorice Pizza (2021).

I wouldn't call American Graffiti a great film, so much as I'd call it a unique and important American film.  Why is it important?  Well, American Graffiti is a prime example of the fantasies that the Hollywood dream factory can make of real moments in time.  It's George Lucas' story – his story – presented as a fairy tale about one unforgettable night that will never be repeated.

8 of 10
A
★★★★ out of 4 stars

Thursday, September 28, 2023

You can buy the American Graffiti film and soundtrack at AMAZON.

NOTES:
1974 Academy Awards, USA:  5 nominations: “Best Picture” (Francis Ford Coppola and Gary Kurtz), “Best Actress in a Supporting Role” (Candy Clark), “Best Director” (George Lucas), “Best Writing, Story and Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Published or Produced” (George Lucas Gloria Katz, and Willard Huyck), and “Best Film Editing” (Verna Fields and Marcia Lucas)

1975 BAFTA Awards:  1 nomination: “Best Supporting Actress” (Cindy Williams)

1974 Golden Globes, USA:  2 wins:  “Best Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical” or “Most Promising Newcomer – Male” (Paul Le Mat); 2 nominations: “Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical” (Richard Dreyfuss) and “Best Director - Motion Picture” (George Lucas)

1995 National Film Preservation Board, USA:  “National Film Registry”


The text is copyright © 2023 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for syndication rights and fees.

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Saturday, June 10, 2023

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from June 1st to 10th, 2023 - Update #27

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:

ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:

ANIMATION - From Deadline:  Warner Animation Group is now Warner Bros Pictures Animation, and that is just part of the rebranding from new President of Feature Animation, Bill Damaschke.

TELEVISION - From DeadlineNBC has cancelled the sitcom, "Young Rock," after three seasons on the network.  The series focuses on different chapters in the life of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.

MUSIC - From Variety:  Grammy-winning legend, Madonna, and Grammy and Oscar-winner, Sam Smith, drop their new collabo, the single, "Vulgar."

SCANDAL - From THR:  Actor and voice performer, Jay Johnston, has been arrested by the FBI for his alleged participation in the Jan. 6, 2021 riots at the U.S. Capitol. Charged by the Department of Justice in connection to his presence at the Capitol, Johnston was arrested Wednesday in Los Angeles.  Johnson is best known for his voice role as "Jimmy Pesto Sr.," a pizzeria owner on Fox's long-running animated series, "Bob's Burgers," and for appearing on such series as "Mr. Show with Bob and Dave" (HBO) and "The Sarah Silverman Program" (Comedy Central).

ANIMATION - From Deadline:  Due to its recent rise in ratings, Cartoon Network is giving its "Adult Swim" banner an extra hour of programming each evening, starting in late August.

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  For the first time, the NFL highlights and analysis TV series, "Inside the NFL, moves to The CW, beginning Sept. 5th.  The series began in 1977 on HBO (1977-2008). It moved to Showtime (2008-21), and then most recently was on Paramount+ (2021-23).

NETFLIX - From Variety:  Zack Snyder days that his epic sci-fi film, "Rebel Moon," will be two films, and each will have two versions.  There will be a version that "anyone can enjoy," and there will be a version that is explicit and for "adults only."

DISNEY - From THRABC has defeated a lawsuit from Ingo Rademacher over his dismissal from the daytime soap opera, "General Hospital," for refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine.  Rademacher left or was fired from the series around November 2021.

SCANDAL - From THR:  Disgraced director, Bryan Singer (Fox's "X-Men" franchise), is planning a documentary film that would address the sexual misconduct accusations against him.  A 2019 expose in "The Atlantic" magazine detailed accusations against Singer by four accusers.

BREAKING - From THR:  98 percent of the members of Hollywood’s largest union, SAG-AFTRA, have given the green light to their negotiators to call a strike if deemed necessary in upcoming labor negotiations with the Hollywood studios.

APPLE - From DeadlineApple has announced its first major device launch in nearly a decade its VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) headset and platform, "Vision Pro."  Apparently, the starting price will be $3499.00

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficePro:  The winner of the 6/2 to 6/4/2023 weekend box office is Sony Pictures Animations' "Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse" with an estimated take of 120.5 million dollars.

From Deadline:  "Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse" grosses 88.1 million dollars at the international box office. Combined with its 120.5 million at the domestic box office, that is a global total of 208.6 million dollars.

MOVIES - From Deadline:  Oscar-winning directors Francis Ford Coppola and Kevin Costner talk about risking their fortunes bankrolling passion projects.  For Coppola, it is "Megalopolis," his epic, troubled sci-fi film.  For Costner, it is "Horizon," the first of four films set in the pre- and post-Civil War expansion of the American West.

DISNEY - From Deadline:  The Disney layoffs have hit Pixar with 75 jobs being made redundant at the legendary animation studio.  Among those let go are Angus McLane, the director of Pixar's "Lightyear" and Galyn Susman, the film's producer.  Susman had been with Pixar since 1995 and is apparently the person who saved "Toy Story 2."

DISNEY - From Deadline:  British actor Hugo Speer, one of the original actors from the 1997 film, "The Full Monty," was dropped from the forthcoming Disney spinoff series because (according to him) a few people saw him... naked.

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  The CW's "The Winchesters" is officially dead, as Warner Bros. has not been able to find another home for the series, which The CW cancelled after one season.  It is a spinoff and prequel to The CW's long-running "Supernatural."

MOVIES - From VarietyHarrison Ford says he takes some of the blame for his clash with Brad Pitt over the script for the 1997 film thriller, "The Devil's Own."

LGBTQ+ - From VarietyElliot Page reveals in his upcoming book, "Pageboy," that a famous actor threatened to force sex on when he came out as gay over decade ago when he was "Ellen Page." The forced sex would prove that he wasn't gay - just afraid of men...

CELEBRITY - From PerezHilton:  Reality television star family, the Duggars, will always be with us. Hilton details how family patriarch, Jim Bob Duggar, stole his children's reality TV money. The post starts off funny and then, starts to read like an expose on a cult leader.

MOVIES - From TheWrap:  Universal Pictures is in active development on an untitled new “Fast & Furious” film starring Dwayne Johnson as "Luke Hobbs." The film won’t be a sequel to 2019's “Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw” or a spinoff.  Instead, it will be a direct continuation of the main “Fast Saga” story, serving as a bridge between the recently released “Fast X” and and its follow-up, “Fast X: Part II.”

From CBR:  Star Vin Diesel is reportedly upset with another "Fast & Furious" co-star over stealing attention from him.

DISNEY - From CBR:  Disney and Lucasfilm have revealed seven new "character posters" from "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny."

HARRISON FORD - From VarietyHarrison Ford told a trio of stunt workers on the set of "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny" the following: "Leave me the f**k alone."  Why? Read and find out.

From CBR:  Harrison Ford has now changed his stance and agrees with "Blade Runner" director, Ridley Scott. Ford believes that the film's lead character, "Rick Deckard," is a replicant.

AWARDS - From Deadline:  Here is your 2023-24 award season calendar, beginning on May 31, 2023 with the "Television Academy Honors" ceremony and ends on ends on March 10th, 2024 with the 96th Academy Awards.

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WRITERS STRIKE:

From Deadline:  The Directors Guild of America (DGA) has reached a tentative new three-year deal with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). So what does the Writers Guild (WGA), currently on strike and negotiating with the AMPTP, think of that deal.

From Deadline:  Netflix shareholders declined to support the 2023 pay packages of top executives during a non-binding vote at the company’s annual shareholder meeting on Thursday.  The vote won't prevent these execs from getting their loot (an total of $166 million), but this is a rare public rebuke.  The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has urged shareholders to vote "No" because the pay was "inappropriate" at this time.

From Deadline:  Warner Bros Discovery chief David Zaslav gave the commencement address at Boston University. There he was met with jeers and also chants of "pay your writers" from picketers and from some in the audience.

From Deadline:   President Joe Biden speaks on the Writers Guild of America strike.

From Deadline:  Retaliation! The studios have starting informing writer-producers who have "overall" and "first-look" deals that such deals are being suspended.

From Deadline:  Retaliation!  Prolific HBO creator, David Simon, who is best known for "The Wire," is one of the many writers who have had their overall deals suspended the studios due to the WGA strike.  Simon has been with HBO for 25 years.

From Deadline:  The Writers Guild of America (WGA) is on strike.

From Deadline:  Disney, HBO/HBO Max, and CBS have sent letters to showrunners (the TV equivalent of film directors) instructing them to return to work, inspite of the writer's strike.

From Deadline:  The WGA's chief negotiator, Ellen Stutzman, talks about the state of the writers' strike, including the lack of engagement on the part of the strike's other party, AMPTP.

From Deadline:  What went wrong between the WGA and AMPTP? What could they not agree on that led to a strike?

From Deadline:  The site explains the WGA strike: the issues, the stakes, movies and TV shows affected, and how long it might last.


Saturday, January 14, 2023

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from January 8th to 14th, 2023 - Update #20

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:

ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  "Snowpiercer," TNT's last remaining original scripted drama, is also leaving the cable network.  Season 4 of "Snowpiercer" has been completed and was to be the series' finale.  It will be shopped around to other networks.

MOVIES - From Variety:  "Variety" has a revealing Q&A with the great horror and science fiction filmmaker, John Carpenter ("Halloween," "They Live," "The Fog").

MOVIES - From ScreenGeek:  Just when you thought it was safe to go outside again ... and visit movie theater comes word that Mel Gibson will begin filming the sequel to his 2004 mega-hit, "The Passion of the Christ," sometime this coming spring.  The title is apparently "The Passion of the Christ: Resurrection."

GOLDEN GLOBES - From Deadline:  For those who care (and I don't care as much as I once did), the winners of the 2023 / 80th Golden Globes Awards were announced last night (Tues., Jan. 10th).  "The Fabelmans" won for "Best Motion Picture-Drama" and "The Banshees of Inisherin" won for "Best Motion Picture-Musical or Comedy."

From DeadlineEddie Murphy was the recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the 80th Annual Golden Globes on Tuesday night (Jan. 10th). Murphy ended his speech with the “blueprint” for up-and-coming actors to achieve success in the industry.  “I want to let you know that there is a definitive blueprint that you can follow to achieve success, prosperity, longevity and peace of mind,” he said. “There’s a blueprint and I followed it my whole career. It’s very simple.” Murphy continued, “Just do these three things: Pay your taxes, mind your business and keep Will Smith’s wife’s name out your f*cking mouth.”

NETFLIX - From THR:  Netflix debuts a trailer for "You People," the new film from Kenya Barris, the creator of ABC's former sitcom hit, "black-ish."  The film stars Eddie Murphy, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, David Duchovny, and Jonah Hill.

MOVIES - From THR:  Halfway through its production in Atlanta, Georgia, director Francis Ford Coppola's new film, "Megalopolis," is in trouble with the loss of key creative talent and the exit of its entire visual effects team.

From Deadline:  Hold up, boo!  Francis Ford Coppola says that there is no truth to the rumors of "Megalopolis" being in trouble.

TELEVISION - From Deadline: TV super-producer, Greg Berlanti, has signed a new four-year exclusive deal with Warner Bros. Television Group.  Berlanti was the architect of DC Comics' live-action TV series on The CW broadcast network.

MOVIES - From THR:   Actor Tim Blake Nelson has joined director Denis Villleneuve's "Dune: Part 2."

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficePro:  The winner of the 1/6/2023 to 1/8/2023 weekend box office is "Avatar: The Way of Water" with an estimated take of 45 million dollars.

From Here:  Leroy Douresseaux's review of "Avatar: The Way of Water."

MOVIES - From Deadline:  Director Eli Roth has not been fired as the director of Lionsgate's "Borderlands," a film based on the video game.  Instead Roth has hand reshoot duties on the film to director Tim Miller ("Deadpool") so that he can begin work on his next film, "Thanksgiving."

STREAMING - From Variety:   After premiering on Dec. 22, 2022, “The Best Man: The Final Chapters” became NBCUniversal streaming service, Peacock’s first original project to make it onto Nielsen’s Top 10 streaming rankings.  It is at #5 in an early version of the Dec. 19th to 25th, 2022 chart.

OBITS:

From Deadline:  Singer-songwriter, Lisa Marie Presley, has died at the age of 54, Thursday, January 12, 2023.  She was the only child of rock 'n' roll icon, Elvis Presley and Priscilla Presley.  Presley recorded three studios albums, including the gold-certified "To Whom it May Concern" (2003).

From BBC:  English rock guitarist, Jeff Beck, has died at the age of 78, Tuesday, January 10, 2023.  One of the most influential rock guitarists ever, Beck was best known for his association with the bands, "The Yardbirds" and "The Jeff Beck Group."  He was nominated for 16 Grammy Awards and won eight of them.

From Deadline:  The great American cinematographer, Owen Roizman, has died at the age of 86, Friday, January 6, 2023.  He received five "Best Cinematography" Oscar nominations, including for his work on "The French Connection" (1971) and "The Exorcist" (1973).  He received the "Academy Honorary Award" in 2017.

From Variety:  Film and television actor and voice performer, Earl Boen, has died at the age of 81, Thursday, January 5, 2023.  Boen was best known for playing criminal psychologist, Dr. Peter Silberman, in three film in the "Terminator" film series, beginning with 1984's "The Terminator."  However, Boen appeared in numerous other films, including "9 to 5" (1980) and "To Be or Not to Be" (1983).  Boen also appeared in guest roles on multiple TV series, including "Seinfeld," "Star Trek: The Next Generation," and "The West Wing," to name a few.  From 1988 to 2004, Boen was a voice actor, performing in almost 40 animated TV series in various genres.

AWARDS:

From Deadline:  The nominees for the 2023 / 34th Producers Guild of America Awards have been announced in both film and TV categories.  The winners will be announced Sat. Feb. 25th, 2023.

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2023 / 29th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards have been announced.  The winners will be announced Sun., Feb. 26th, 2023.

From DeadlineThe National Society of Film Critics has named "Tar" its "Best Picture" of 2023 and its star, Cate Blanchette, as "Best Actress."

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2023 / 23rd Annual Black Reel Awards have been announced.  "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" and "The Woman King" have tied for the lead in nominations with 14 apiece.  The winners will be announced February 6, 2023.

From Deadline:  The Black Film Critics Circle named "The Woman King" the "Best Film" of 2022.

From Deadline:  The winners of the 2022 Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA) Awards have been announced.  "Everything Everywhere All at Once" and "Tar" tie for "Best Picture" award.

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2023 / 80th annual Golden Globes Awards were announced today (Mon., Dec. 12th).  "The Banshees of Inisherin" led the film field with eight nominations. ABC's "Abbot Elementary" lead the TV side with five nominations.  The winners will be announced January 10, 2023.

From Deadline:  The American Film Institute (AFI) has named its "AFI Awards Film" list of "Top 10 Films of 2022."  The list includes "Avatar: The Way of Water," "Top Gun: Maverick," and "The Woman King."

From THR:  The African-American Film Critics Association name "The Woman King" the "Best Film of 2022."

From Deadline:  The nominations for the "2023 Critics Choice Awards" in the television categories have been announced.  ABC's sitcom, "Abbot Elementary" leads the nominations.  The winners will be announced Sunday, January 15, 2023 and broadcast on The CW.

From Variety:  The 2022 / 88th Annual New York Film Critics Circle (NYFCC) Awards have been announced.  Todd Field's "Tar" wins "Best Film" and "Best Actress" (Cate Blanchett).  Keke Palmer wins "Best Supporting Actress" for her performance in "Nope."

From Deadline:  "Everything Everywhere All at Once" wins the "Best Feature" award at the 2022 / 32nd Annual Gotham Awards, one of two wins for the film.

From IndieWire:  The nominations for the 2023 Film Independent Spirit Awards have been announced.   "Everything Everywhere All at Once" leads with eight nominations.  The winners will be announced March 4th, 2023.

From Variety:  The nominations for the 2022 / 32nd Annual Gotham Awards were announced a month ago.  Todd Field's "Tar" leads with five nominations.  The winners will be announced Monday, November 28th.

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BRITTNEY GRINER:

From CBSNews:  WNBA star Brittney Griner has been released from her Russian imprisonment in a one-for-one prisoner swap for notorious international arms dealer, Viktor Bout.

From NBCNews:   Brittney Griner will enter a system of isolation, grueling labor and psychological torment when she is transferred to a penal colony, the successor to the infamous Russian gulag, to fulfill a nine-year sentence handed down Tuesday in Moscow, former prisoners and advocates said.

From NBCNews:  A Russian court has rejected Brittney Griner's appeal of her nine-year prison sentence on (fake) drug charges.

From Reuters:  Russia says that it is ready to talk prisoner swamp for Brittney Griner and U.S. Marine veteran Paul Whelan, but also scolds the U.S. Embassy.

From TheDailyBeast:   Legendary NBA bad boy and champion (Detroit Pistons, Chicago Bulls), Dennis Rodman claims that he has been given permission to go to Russia and help free imprisoned hostage, WNBA star, Brittney Griner.

From Vox:  Vox's Jonathan Guyer talks the Brittney Griner case with Danielle Gilbert, a Dartmouth professor who is writing a book about states and rogue actors that take hostages.

From ESPN:   A Russian court sentenced WNBA star Brittney Griner to nine years in prison Thursday, Aug. 4th.  Griner was arrested Feb. 17 for bringing cannabis into the country and pleaded guilty July 7, though the case continued under Russian law.

From ESPN:  The Biden administration has offered a deal to Russia aimed at bringing home WNBA star Brittney Griner and another jailed American, Paul Whelan, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday.

From RSN:  "Will Support From LeBron James, Joe Rogan, Kim Kardashian, and Other Celebrities Help Free Brittney Griner From a Russian Prison?" by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar via Substack

From ESPN:  Detained WNBA star Brittney Griner pleaded guilty on Thursday to bringing hashish oil into Russia, telling a judge that she had done so "inadvertently" while asking the court for mercy.

From CBSSports:  The Brittney Griner situation explained.

From RSN:  According to The Washington Post Editorial Board: "Brittney Griner is a hostage, plain and simple."


Saturday, May 14, 2022

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from May 8th to 14th, 2022 - Update #18

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:

ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  "The Sugar Shack," the painting by artist Ernie Barnes that was displayed in the end credits of the late CBS sitcom, "Good Times," has sold at auction for $15.3 million.

MOVIES - From Deadline:  Director Rob Reiner and stars: Michael McKean, Harry Shearer, and Christopher Guest are reuniting for "Spinal Tap II," a sequel to the cult classic "mockumentary" (mock documentary film), "This is Spinal Tap."

MOVIES - From Deadline:  Actor Dan Stevens is set to be the lead in the sequel to "Godzilla vs. Kong," which will reunite Stevens with the film's director, Adam Wingard.

MOVIES - From THR:   Oscar-winner Christopher Walken has joined the cast of "Dune: Part Two."

MOVIES - From THR:   Adam Driver, Forest Whitaker, and Laurence Fishburne are among the cast of director Francis Ford Coppola's self-financed film, "Megalopolis."

MOVIES - From DeadlineHayden Panettiere will return as "Kirby Reed" in "Scream 6."  Kirby was the lone survivor of "Scream 4."

TELEVISION - From Deadline:  NBC has put in a series order for the comedy, "Lopez Vs. Lopez," starring George Lopez and Maya Lopez.

DISNEY - From THRRick Riordan, author of the "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" books series, and his wife, Rebecca, condemn racists attacks against actress Leah Sava Jeffries.  Jeffries will star in the Disney+ series version of "Percy Jackson," which the Riordans are executive producers on the upcoming series.

POLITICS/DISNEY - From THRU.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo) has proposed a federal legislation that would limit copyright protection to 56 years.  The law would apply retroactively to existing copyrights.  Hawley's legislation is apparently aimed at the Walt Disney Company, which would lose its copyright to certain iterations of Mickey Mouse, for instance.  The legislation is unlikely to pass.

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficePro:  The winner of the 5/6 to 5/8/2022 weekend box office is Disney/Marvel Studios' "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" with an estimated gross of 185 million dollars.

From Deadline:  "Doctor Strange 2's" $450 million global debut is the second largest for a Hollywood film during the pandemic era.

From Here:  My review of "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness."

AWARDS - From Variety:  The nominations for the 2022 / 75th Tony Awards were announced Mon., May 9th. The winners will be announced June 12th.

AMAZON - From Deadline:  Amazon's "Jack Ryan" series (with John Krasinski in the lead) will end with Season 4Amazon Studios is considering a spinoff with actor Michael Pena.

TELEVISION - From BBC:  The 29-year-old Rwandan-born, Scottish actor Ncuti Gatwa will take over the role of "The Doctor" on the BBC's "Doctor Who."  Gatwa replaces Jodie Whittaker and is the 14th Doctor.

MOVIES - From LATimes:  The paper takes a look at the French abortion drama, "Happening."

OBITS:

From Variety:  Actor Fred Ward has died at the age of 79, Sunday, May 8, 2022.  Ward was best known for numerous films, including "The Right Stuff," "Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins," "Henry & June," "Tremors," "The Player," and "Short Cuts," to name a few.

From THR:  Country singer and songwriter and businessman, Mickey Gilley, has died at the age of 86, Saturday, May 7, 2022.  Gilley may be best remembered as the owner of "Gilley's Club," what would later become known as "the world's largest honky tonk."  The club inspired the nightclub, "Gilley's," that appeared in the 1980 John Travolta film, "Urban Cowboy," in which Mickey himself also appeared.  Gilley received six Academy of County Music Awards.  His "Gilley's Urban Cowboy Band" won a Grammy for "Best Country Instrumental Perfomance in 1981.  He also had 17 No. 1 songs.

From Deadline:  The film, television, and stage actor, James Olson, died at the age of 91, April 17, 2022.  He was best known for his performances in such films as "Rachel, Rachel" (1968) and "The Andromeda Strain (1971).  He appeared in numerous TV series, including "Bonanza," "Maude," "Wonder Woman," and "Murder, She Wrote," to name a few.


Saturday, March 5, 2022

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from March 1st to 5th, 2022 - Update #16

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:

ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:

MOVIES - From THRWill Smith is returning for the long-talked about sequel to his hit 2007 film, "I Am Legend." This time actor Michael B. Jordan will also star in the film as well as be one of its producers.

MOVIES - From Deadline:   The first photographic image has been released from the action film, "Dead Zone," which stars Michael Jai White and Chad Michael Collins.

MOVIES - From Deadline:  Reportedly, rapper Jack Harlow's first screen audition lands him a role in the reboot of writer-director Ron Shelton's 1992 sports comedy, "White Men Can't Jump."

TRAILER - From Deadline:  There is a trailer for the 50th Anniversary re-release of Francis Ford Coppola's "The Godfather."  This film and the others in the series will also have a 4K Ultra HD and Ultra Blu-ray release.

STREAMING - From Variety:  Actor Anthony Mackie will star in and executive produce a TV series based on the Sony Playstation video game, "Twisted Metal." The series is being produced for NBCUniversal's streaming service, Peacock.

OSCARS - From Variety:   Samuel L. Jackson says, ‘I Should’ve Won’ an Oscar, but Oscars Don’t Get ‘Asses in Seats’ Like I Do

TRAILER - From VarietySony Pictures has released the official trailer for the stylish action movie, "Bullet Train" starring Brad Pitt and directed David Leitch.

MOVIES - From Consequence:  There is a report that says that Oscar-winning film producer, Brad Pitt, has come on board as a producer on the long-rumored sequel to "Beetlejuice" (1988).

ANIMATION - From Deadline:  The beloved sci-fi animated comedy, "Futurama," is returning on Hulu with 20 episodes and with "Bender" voice actor, John DiMaggio.

NETFLIX - From Deadline:  On the comeback trail, actress Lindsay Lohan strikes two-picture deal with Netflix.

AWARDS - From Deadline:  The winners of the 2022 / 22nd annual Black Reel Awards were announced Monday evening, Feb. 28th in a livestream.  The Black Western, "The Harder They Fall" led with 6 wins, and "King Richard" was named "Outstanding Film" of 2021.

DISNEY - From DeadlineThe Walt Disney Company is temporarily pulling its theatrical releases from Russian movie theaters due to Russia's invasion of the nation of Ukraine.

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficeMojo:  The winner of the 2/25 to 2/27/2022 weekend box office is Sony Pictures' "Uncharted" with a take of 23 million dollars.

MOVIES - From CNN:  Mid-budget Hollywood movies are in decline.  What does that mean for American cinema?

OBITS:

From Deadline:  American film executive and film producer, Alan Ladd, Jr., has died at the age of 84, Wednesday, March 2, 2022.  Ladd won an Oscar for producing "Braveheart" with Mel Gibson and Bruce Davey.  He was also the president of 20th Century Fox who approved the production of "Star Wars" and he was an executive at MGM/UA.

From Deadline:  Broadway and television actor, Ned Eisenberg, has died at the age of 65, Sunday, February 27, 2022.  Eisenberg was best known for his recurring role on NBC's "Law & Order: Special Victim's Unit" as the villainous defense attorney Roger Kressler.  Eisenberg had a prolific career in film and TV and on stage.

From Deadline:  Actress Farrah Forke has died at the age of 54, Friday, February 25, 2022.  Forke is best known for her recurring role as "Alex Lambert" on Seasons 4 through 6 of NBC's former sitcom, "Wings."  She also appeared on ABC's former romantic drama, "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" and the CBS comedy, "Dweebs."

---------------------

94TH ACADEMY AWARDS:

OSCARS - From Variety:  The nominations for the 2022 / 94th Academy Awards have been announced.  "The Power of the Dog" leads with 12 nominations.  The winners will be revealed March 27th.

From Deadline:    With his "Best Actor" nomination for "The Tragedy of Macbeth," Denzel Washington is the most nominated Black actor is Oscar history.  He has been nominated in two acting categories a total of 10 times with two wins total.

From Variety:   With her "Best Director" Oscar nomination for "The Power of the Dog," Jane Campion becomes the first woman nominated twice in that category. She was previously nominated in that category for "The Piano" (1993).

From Variety:  With his three nominations today, Kenneth Branagh of "Belfast" becomes the first person to have been nominated in seven individual categories over his career.

-----------------------

MOVIE AWARDS:

From Deadline:   The winners at the 2022 / 28th annual SAG Awards. "CODA" wins the top prize, "Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture."

From Variety:  Here is a complete list of winners at 2022 / 53rd NAACP Image Awards in the film, television and music categories.  Jennifer Hudson was named "Entertainer of the Year."

From Deadline:   The 2022 / 9th annual Make-Up Artists & Hair Stylists Guild Awards were announced.  The Amazon film, "Coming 2 America" (the sequel to the 1988 film, "Coming to America"), led with three wins.

From Deadline:  The 2022 BAFTA Film Awards nominations have been announced.  "Dune" leads with 11 nominations.  The winners will be announced March 13th.

From Deadline:   The 2022 / 33rd annual Producers Guild of America Awards nominations have been announced.  The winners will be announced Saturday, March 19th.

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2022 / 74th annual Directors Guild Awards have been announced.  The winners will be announced March 12th.

From COFCA:  The Columbus Film Critics Association name "The Power of the Dog" the "Best Film" of 2021.

From Deadline:  Netflix's Black Western, "The Harder They Fall," was named the "Best Picture" of 2021 at the 13th annual African American Film Critics Association Awards.  The Western tied with "King Richard" for most wins with four.  Will Smith was named "Best Actor" for "King Richard."

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2022 / 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards have been announced.

From Variety:  The snubs and surprises in the nominations for the 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards.

From Variety:   At the 2022 / 79th Golden Globes, "The Power of the Dog" wins "Best Motion Picture-Drama" and "West Side Story" wins "Best Motion Picture-Musical or Comedy."

From VarietyThe National Society of Film Critics names the Japanese film, "Drive My Car," the best film of 2021.

From AwardsWatch:  The nominations for the 22nd Annual Black Reel Awards were announced a few weeks ago. Netflix's Black Western, "The Harder They Fall," has a record 20 nominations.  The winners will be announced February 27, 2022.

From AwardsWatch:  The Columbus Film Critics Association announced the nominations for their annual film awards.  Director Jane Campion's "The Power of the Dog" leads with 12 noms.  The winners will be announced Thurs., Jan. 6th, 2022.

From Deadline:  The Los Angeles Film Critics Association has named the Japanese film, "Drive My Car," the "Best Picture" of 2021.

From Deadline:  The 2022 / 37th annual Film Independent Spirit Awards have announced their nominations. "Zola" leads with six nominations. The winners will be announced Sun., March 6, 2022.

From THR:  The 2022 / 79th Golden Globes Awards nominations have been announced.  "Belfast" and "The Power of the Dog" lead with seven nominations each.  Winners will be announced Jan. 9th, 2022.

From GoldDerby:   The 2022 Critics Choice Awards nominations have been announced. "Belfast" and "West Side Story" leads with 11 nominations each. Winners will be announced Jan. 9th, 2022.

From Deadline:   The American Film Institute announced the "2021 AFI Awards" Top 10 list, and the list includes "Dune," "The Tragedy of Macbeth," and "West Side Story."

From THR:  Director Aleem Khan's "After Love" tops the 2021 British Independent Film Awards, winning six awards, including "Best Film of 2021."

From Variety:   The New York Film Critics Circle has named the Japanese drama, "Drive My Car," as the "Best Film of 2021."

From Deadline:  The National Board of Review hands director Paul Thomas Anderson's "Licorice Pizza" it "Best Film" and "Best Director" awards.  Will Smith picks up the "Best Actor" award for "King Richard."

From THR:  Netflix’s "The Lost Daughter," directed by actress Maggie Gyllenhaal, dominated the 2021 Gotham Awards in New York on Monday night (Nov. 29th).  The film won in four of the five categories in which it was nominated, including "Best Feature."

---------------------------------

"RUST" ACCIDENTAL SHOOTING DEATH:

From Deadline:  This link will take you to Deadline's Halyna Hutchins page, which articles related to everything about her shooting death on the set of the Western film, "Rust."

From DeadlineMatt Hutchins, the husband of Halyna Hutchins, blames Alec Baldwin for Halyna's accidental shooting death on the set of the doomed Western film, "Rust."

From Deadline:  The family and estate of Halyna Hutchins has filed suit against Alec Baldwin (who accidentally shot Hutchins), a slew of production companies and entities, producers, and key crew members involved in the Western film, "Rust," for her death.

From THR:   A Republican New Mexico legislator, State Sen. Cliff Pirtle of Roswell, on Monday introduced a bill that would require all film set personnel who handle firearms to complete a safety course offered by the New Mexico Game and Fish Department.  This is in the wake a cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, being fatally shot on the set of the Western, "Rust," last year by Alec Baldwin with a weapon he says he thought was not loaded with live ammunition.

From DeadlineAlec Baldwin and the other producers of the doomed Western film, "Rust," want a California judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed against them by the script supervisor, Mamie Mitchell.

From Deadline:   Alec Baldwin has finally turned over his cell phone to police for their probe into the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of Baldwin's Western film, "Rust," last October in New Mexico.

From Variety:  One of the producers of tragic Western film, Rust, Emily Salveson, pushes tax shelters and hid income.

From THR:  "I let go of the hammer and 'Bang,' the gun goes off" says Alec Baldwin says in his first interview of the moment when a gun he was holding accidentally killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the Western film, "Rust."

From DeadlineAlec Baldwin will sit down with ABC's news-reading clown George Stephanopoulos for a one hour special tomorrow night to talk about what happened on the set of the movie "Rust."  It will be Baldwin’s first extensive interview about the shooting.

From Deadline:  Industry veteran, Thall Reed, the father of Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the Western, "Rust," may have handed the police a tip on why the film's cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, was shot to death on the set.

From THR:  A search warrant affidavit filed Tuesday for a prop shop sheds light on how alleged live ammunition ended up on the set of the Western film, "Rust," where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed in October.

From Deadline:  A month after cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, was shot and killed on the New Mexico set the movie Western, "Rust," by a prop gun “discharged” by Alec Baldwin, those closest to the cinematographer held a private ceremony and interred her ashes at an unknown location.

From Deadline:  Actor Daniel Baldwin defends his brother, Alec Baldwin, in the accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film, "Rust."  "Someone loaded that gun improperly," Daniel says.

From Deadline:  The newest lawsuit involving the tragic shooting on the set of the Western film, "Rust," has been filed by the film's script supervisor, Mamie Mitchell, against Alec Baldwin, the producers, the production company, armorer Hanna Gutierrez Reed, and others.

From DeadlineSerge Svetnoy, the gaffer on "Rust," has filed a lawsuit against several parties related to the film, including the production, the financiers, star Alec Baldwin, armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, and first Assistant Director David Halls.

From THR:   In the wake of the tragic accidental shooting on the set of his film, "Rust," Alec Baldwin on Monday took to social media to urge Hollywood to employ a police officer on every film and TV set that uses guns.

From THR:   The budget for "Rust" - Alec Baldwin was set to earn $150,000 as lead actor and $100,000 as producer, while $7,913 was earmarked for armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and $17,500 was set aside for the rental of weapons and $5,000 for rounds.

From Deadline:  Attorneys for Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the set of the film, "Rust," said that they’re looking into whether a live bullet was placed in a box of dummy rounds with the intent of  “sabotaging the set.”

From THR:   Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the film, "Rust," released a statement through her lawyers.  She says she had “no idea where the live rounds came from” that were recovered by the Santa Fe County Sheriff's during the investigation of the accidental on-set shooting death of Halyna Hutchins.

From Jacobin:  An opinion piece says that cinematographer Halyna Hutchins' death on the set of the film, "Rust," was not a freak accident, but was about Alec Baldwin and his fellow producers' cost-cutting decisions.  Baldwin accidentally fired the gun that killed Hutchins.

From Deadline:   Two of executive producers on "Rust," Allen Cheney and Emily Salveson, disavow responsibility for the film's troubled production.

From THR:   Iconic "Ghostbusters" actor Ernie Hudson is reeling from the news of the death of Halyna Hutchins, like the rest of Hollywood. Hudson also appeared in the film, "The Crow," the film in which its star, Brandon Lee, was killed because of an on-set accidental shooting.  He also agrees with the call to ban real guns from movie sets.

From THR:  The Sheriff of Sante Fe County says that his office has recovered three guns and 500 rounds of ammunition from the set of the movie "Rust" where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed.

From Deadline:  Regarding criminal charges in the death of Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film "Rust," District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altweis, "all options are on the table - no one has been ruled out."

From THR:  Does Hollywood Need Guns? Will new regulations lead to an overreactions to a tragedy.

From Deadline:   "Rust" producers have opened an internal investigation into the fatal shooting on the set of the Western film.  They have hired outside lawyers to conduct interviews with the film's production crew.

From Deadline:  "Rust's" AD (assistant director), Dave Halls, has come under scrutiny in the wake of the on-set shooting death of the film's cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins.

From Deadline:  The affidavit of Sante Fe Sheriff's Department Detective Joel Cano has been made public. It can be read at "Deadline."  The affidavit was for a search warrant from the property were the Western, "Rust," was being filmed.

From THR:  The production company behind "Rust" has shut the film down until the police investigation into the fatal, on-set shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins is through.  The Sante Fe County Sheriff's Office has also revealed a timeline of the shooting.

From Deadline:  The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department confirmed Thursday night that Alec Baldwin “discharged” a prop gun on the New Mexico set of the movie, "Rust."  As a result, one crew member, director of photography Halyna Hutchins, was killed and director Joel Souza was injured and remains in a local hospital - his condition unknown.

From THR:  "Rust" director, Joel Souza, who was wounded in the accidental on-set shooting, says that he is "gutted" by the death of his cinematographer on the film, Halyna Hutchins.

From Deadline:  The fatal shooting on the set of "Rust" may have been "recorded" according to detective for Santa Fe Sheriff's Department.

From Deadline:  The production company behind the film, "Rust," will launch an internal safety review after the fatal accident that killed Halyna Hutchins; possible prior gun incidents; and a camera crew walkout.

From CNN:   Crew member yelled "cold gun" as he handed Alec Baldwin prop weapon, court document shows.

From Variety:  Actor Alec Baldwin releases statement on the death of Halyna Hutchins: "There are no words to convey my shock and sadness."

From Variety:  The prop gun that killed “Rust” cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza on during an on-set accident on Thursday contained a “live single round,” according to an email sent by IATSE Local 44 to its membership.


Friday, February 18, 2022

Negromancer News Bits and Bites from February 13th to 19th, 2022 - Update #20

by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

You can support Leroy via Paypal or on Patreon:

ENTERTAINMENT AND CULTURE NEWS:

TELEVISION - From Variety:  FX has announced that its Emmy-winning comedy, "Atlanta" will end with Season 4, which debuts Fall 2022Season 3 debuts March 24th.

From VarietyNetflix has renewed its hit "Stranger Things" for a fifth and final season.

STAR TREK - From Variety:  Whatever happened to Quentin Tarantino's "Star Trek" pitch explained.

MOVIES - From GQ:  Legendary filmmaker and Oscar-winning director, Francis Ford Coppola, talks about "Godfather" on its 50th anniversary; laments the state of modern cinema (Marvel Studios), and talks about self-financing his 120 million dollar dream project, "Megalopolis."

ANIMATION - From DeadlineSkydance Animation has acquired the rights to director Brad Bird's next animated film, "Ray Gunn."  A multiple Oscar-winner, Bird is known for his animated films, "Iron Giant," and "The Incredibles" films.

TELEVISION - From THR:  A guide to all the scripted TV shows that have been renewed, canceled and ordered to series for the 2021-22 season on ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and The CW.

FILM FESTIVALS - From Deadline:  Director Carla Simon's film, "Alcarras," wins the top prize, the "Golden Bear," at the 72nd Berlin Film Festival.

MOVIES - From IGN:  During Paramount Pictures' investor day, a third film in the "A Quiet Place" series was announced. A spinoff movie directed by Michael Sarnoski was also confirmed.

STAR TREK - From BleedingCoolJ.J. Abrams said that a fourth "Star Trek" film in his series is happening and that they are currently trying to get the cast back together.

ANIME - From Variety:  The magazine has a first look at “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim,” an original anime feature from New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. Animation.  It is set for release on April 12, 2024 from Warner Bros. Pictures.

MOVIES - From TheRinger:  "Death on the Disney Vine" by Miles Surrey. What is the fate of "Death on the Nile" and other 20th Century Fox films, post-Disney merger?

OSCARS - From Variety:  Amy Schumer, Regina Hall, and Wanda Sykes are finalizing details to host this year’s 94th Academy Awards, multiple sources told "Variety."

MOVIES/TRAILERS - From Variety:  Several high-profile film and streaming projects debuted a trailer during Super Bowl LVI. You can watch them all on this "Variety" page.

SPORTS/NFL - From YahooSports:  The Los Angeles Rams defeat the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 to win Super Bowl LVI.  It is the franchise's second Super Bowl championship in 5 appearances.

BOX OFFICE - From BoxOfficePro:  The winner of the 2/11 to 2/13/2022 weekend box office is "Death on the Nile" with an estimated gross of 12.8 million dollars.

TRAILER - From Deadline:  Universal Pictures has revealed the first official trailer for Jordan Peele's next film, "Nope."  It is scheduled to arrive in theaters July 22, 2022 (according to Deadline) or August 4th (according to the trailer).

LGBTQ/MOVIES - From YahooEntertainment:  On the film's 40th anniversary, actor Harry Hamlin talks about his role in the groundbreaking gay romance, "Making Love."

AMAZON - From DeadlineRidley Scott is executive producing a TV series, "Blade Runner 2099" this  is a follow-up to the 2017 film, "Blade Runner: 2049."  Scott directed the original film, 1982's "Blade Runner."

OBITS:

From Vareity:  Film writer, producer, and director, Ivan Reitman, has died at the age of 75, Saturday, February 12, 2022.  Reitman was best known for directing successful film comedies from the late 1970s to the late 1990s.  Those include "Meatballs" (1979), "Ghost Busters" (1984), "Ghostbusters II (1989), and "Dave" (1993), to name a few.  He also produced "Animal House" (1978), "Heavy Metal" (1981), and the Oscar-nominated "Up in the Air" (2009), which was directed by his son, Jason Reitman.

From YahooEntertainment:  This remembrance of the recently passed film director, Ivan Reitman, discusses the origins of his most famous film, 1984's "Ghost Busters" ("Ghostbusters").

From Deadline:  Actor, Frank Pesce, has died at the age of 75, Sunday, February 6, 2022.  Known as a colorful character, Pesce appeared in such films as "Beverly Hills Cop" (1984), "Top Gun" (1986), and "Midnight Run" (1988).  He also appeared on such TV series as "Kojak," "Miami Vice," and "Matlock."  There was also a film about Pesce's early life, "29th Street" (1991), which was directed by George Gallo.

--------------------------

94TH ACADEMY AWARDS:

OSCARS - From Variety:  The nominations for the 2022 / 94th Academy Awards have been announced.  "The Power of the Dog" leads with 12 nominations.  The winners will be revealed March 27th.

From Deadline:    With his "Best Actor" nomination for "The Tragedy of Macbeth," Denzel Washington is the most nominated Black actor is Oscar history.  He has been nominated in two acting categories a total of 10 times with two wins total.

From Variety:   With her "Best Director" Oscar nomination for "The Power of the Dog," Jane Campion becomes the first woman nominated twice in that category. She was previously nominated in that category for "The Piano" (1993).

From Variety:  With his three nominations today, Kenneth Branagh of "Belfast" becomes the first person to have been nominated in seven individual categories over his career.

-----------------------

MOVIE AWARDS:

From Deadline:  The 2022 BAFTA Film Awards nominations have been announced.  "Dune" leads with 11 nominations.  The winners will be announced March 13th.

From Deadline:   The 2022 / 33rd annual Producers Guild of America Awards nominations have been announced.  The winners will be announced Saturday, March 19th.

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2022 / 74th annual Directors Guild Awards have been announced.  The winners will be announced March 12th.

From COFCA:  The Columbus Film Critics Association name "The Power of the Dog" the "Best Film" of 2021.

From Deadline:  Netflix's Black Western, "The Harder They Fall," was named the "Best Picture" of 2021 at the 13th annual African American Film Critics Association Awards.  The Western tied with "King Richard" for most wins with four.  Will Smith was named "Best Actor" for "King Richard."

From Deadline:  The nominations for the 2022 / 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards have been announced.

From Variety:  The snubs and surprises in the nominations for the 28th Screen Actors Guild Awards.

From Variety:   At the 2022 / 79th Golden Globes, "The Power of the Dog" wins "Best Motion Picture-Drama" and "West Side Story" wins "Best Motion Picture-Musical or Comedy."

From VarietyThe National Society of Film Critics names the Japanese film, "Drive My Car," the best film of 2021.

From AwardsWatch:  The nominations for the 22nd Annual Black Reel Awards were announced a few weeks ago. Netflix's Black Western, "The Harder They Fall," has a record 20 nominations.  The winners will be announced February 27, 2022.

From AwardsWatch:  The Columbus Film Critics Association announced the nominations for their annual film awards.  Director Jane Campion's "The Power of the Dog" leads with 12 noms.  The winners will be announced Thurs., Jan. 6th, 2022.

From Deadline:  The Los Angeles Film Critics Association has named the Japanese film, "Drive My Car," the "Best Picture" of 2021.

From Deadline:  The 2022 / 37th annual Film Independent Spirit Awards have announced their nominations. "Zola" leads with six nominations. The winners will be announced Sun., March 6, 2022.

From THR:  The 2022 / 79th Golden Globes Awards nominations have been announced.  "Belfast" and "The Power of the Dog" lead with seven nominations each.  Winners will be announced Jan. 9th, 2022.

From GoldDerby:   The 2022 Critics Choice Awards nominations have been announced. "Belfast" and "West Side Story" leads with 11 nominations each. Winners will be announced Jan. 9th, 2022.

From Deadline:   The American Film Institute announced the "2021 AFI Awards" Top 10 list, and the list includes "Dune," "The Tragedy of Macbeth," and "West Side Story."

From THR:  Director Aleem Khan's "After Love" tops the 2021 British Independent Film Awards, winning six awards, including "Best Film of 2021."

From Variety:   The New York Film Critics Circle has named the Japanese drama, "Drive My Car," as the "Best Film of 2021."

From Deadline:  The National Board of Review hands director Paul Thomas Anderson's "Licorice Pizza" it "Best Film" and "Best Director" awards.  Will Smith picks up the "Best Actor" award for "King Richard."

From THR:  Netflix’s "The Lost Daughter," directed by actress Maggie Gyllenhaal, dominated the 2021 Gotham Awards in New York on Monday night (Nov. 29th).  The film won in four of the five categories in which it was nominated, including "Best Feature."

---------------------------------

"RUST" ACCIDENTAL SHOOTING DEATH:

From Deadline:  This link will take you to Deadline's Halyna Hutchins page, which articles related to everything about her shooting death on the set of the Western film, "Rust."

From Deadline:  The family and estate of Halyna Hutchins has filed suit against Alec Baldwin (who accidentally shot Hutchins), a slew of production companies and entities, producers, and key crew members involved in the Western film, "Rust," for her death.

From THR:   A Republican New Mexico legislator, State Sen. Cliff Pirtle of Roswell, on Monday introduced a bill that would require all film set personnel who handle firearms to complete a safety course offered by the New Mexico Game and Fish Department.  This is in the wake a cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, being fatally shot on the set of the Western, "Rust," last year by Alec Baldwin with a weapon he says he thought was not loaded with live ammunition.

From DeadlineAlec Baldwin and the other producers of the doomed Western film, "Rust," want a California judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed against them by the script supervisor, Mamie Mitchell.

From Deadline:   Alec Baldwin has finally turned over his cell phone to police for their probe into the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of Baldwin's Western film, "Rust," last October in New Mexico.

From Variety:  One of the producers of tragic Western film, Rust, Emily Salveson, pushes tax shelters and hid income.

From THR:  "I let go of the hammer and 'Bang,' the gun goes off" says Alec Baldwin says in his first interview of the moment when a gun he was holding accidentally killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the Western film, "Rust."

From DeadlineAlec Baldwin will sit down with ABC's news-reading clown George Stephanopoulos for a one hour special tomorrow night to talk about what happened on the set of the movie "Rust."  It will be Baldwin’s first extensive interview about the shooting.

From Deadline:  Industry veteran, Thall Reed, the father of Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the Western, "Rust," may have handed the police a tip on why the film's cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, was shot to death on the set.

From THR:  A search warrant affidavit filed Tuesday for a prop shop sheds light on how alleged live ammunition ended up on the set of the Western film, "Rust," where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed in October.

From Deadline:  A month after cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, was shot and killed on the New Mexico set the movie Western, "Rust," by a prop gun “discharged” by Alec Baldwin, those closest to the cinematographer held a private ceremony and interred her ashes at an unknown location.

From Deadline:  Actor Daniel Baldwin defends his brother, Alec Baldwin, in the accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film, "Rust."  "Someone loaded that gun improperly," Daniel says.

From Deadline:  The newest lawsuit involving the tragic shooting on the set of the Western film, "Rust," has been filed by the film's script supervisor, Mamie Mitchell, against Alec Baldwin, the producers, the production company, armorer Hanna Gutierrez Reed, and others.

From DeadlineSerge Svetnoy, the gaffer on "Rust," has filed a lawsuit against several parties related to the film, including the production, the financiers, star Alec Baldwin, armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, and first Assistant Director David Halls.

From THR:   In the wake of the tragic accidental shooting on the set of his film, "Rust," Alec Baldwin on Monday took to social media to urge Hollywood to employ a police officer on every film and TV set that uses guns.

From THR:   The budget for "Rust" - Alec Baldwin was set to earn $150,000 as lead actor and $100,000 as producer, while $7,913 was earmarked for armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and $17,500 was set aside for the rental of weapons and $5,000 for rounds.

From Deadline:  Attorneys for Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the set of the film, "Rust," said that they’re looking into whether a live bullet was placed in a box of dummy rounds with the intent of  “sabotaging the set.”

From THR:   Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the film, "Rust," released a statement through her lawyers.  She says she had “no idea where the live rounds came from” that were recovered by the Santa Fe County Sheriff's during the investigation of the accidental on-set shooting death of Halyna Hutchins.

From Jacobin:  An opinion piece says that cinematographer Halyna Hutchins' death on the set of the film, "Rust," was not a freak accident, but was about Alec Baldwin and his fellow producers' cost-cutting decisions.  Baldwin accidentally fired the gun that killed Hutchins.

From Deadline:   Two of executive producers on "Rust," Allen Cheney and Emily Salveson, disavow responsibility for the film's troubled production.

From THR:   Iconic "Ghostbusters" actor Ernie Hudson is reeling from the news of the death of Halyna Hutchins, like the rest of Hollywood. Hudson also appeared in the film, "The Crow," the film in which its star, Brandon Lee, was killed because of an on-set accidental shooting.  He also agrees with the call to ban real guns from movie sets.

From THR:  The Sheriff of Sante Fe County says that his office has recovered three guns and 500 rounds of ammunition from the set of the movie "Rust" where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed.

From Deadline:  Regarding criminal charges in the death of Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film "Rust," District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altweis, "all options are on the table - no one has been ruled out."

From THR:  Does Hollywood Need Guns? Will new regulations lead to an overreactions to a tragedy.

From Deadline:   "Rust" producers have opened an internal investigation into the fatal shooting on the set of the Western film.  They have hired outside lawyers to conduct interviews with the film's production crew.

From Deadline:  "Rust's" AD (assistant director), Dave Halls, has come under scrutiny in the wake of the on-set shooting death of the film's cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins.

From Deadline:  The affidavit of Sante Fe Sheriff's Department Detective Joel Cano has been made public. It can be read at "Deadline."  The affidavit was for a search warrant from the property were the Western, "Rust," was being filmed.

From THR:  The production company behind "Rust" has shut the film down until the police investigation into the fatal, on-set shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins is through.  The Sante Fe County Sheriff's Office has also revealed a timeline of the shooting.

From Deadline:  The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department confirmed Thursday night that Alec Baldwin “discharged” a prop gun on the New Mexico set of the movie, "Rust."  As a result, one crew member, director of photography Halyna Hutchins, was killed and director Joel Souza was injured and remains in a local hospital - his condition unknown.

From THR:  "Rust" director, Joel Souza, who was wounded in the accidental on-set shooting, says that he is "gutted" by the death of his cinematographer on the film, Halyna Hutchins.

From Deadline:  The fatal shooting on the set of "Rust" may have been "recorded" according to detective for Santa Fe Sheriff's Department.

From Deadline:  The production company behind the film, "Rust," will launch an internal safety review after the fatal accident that killed Halyna Hutchins; possible prior gun incidents; and a camera crew walkout.

From CNN:   Crew member yelled "cold gun" as he handed Alec Baldwin prop weapon, court document shows.

From Variety:  Actor Alec Baldwin releases statement on the death of Halyna Hutchins: "There are no words to convey my shock and sadness."

From Variety:  The prop gun that killed “Rust” cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza on during an on-set accident on Thursday contained a “live single round,” according to an email sent by IATSE Local 44 to its membership.