I’m live-snarking the 85th Oscars for the outstanding film achievements of 2012 starting at 5:30 PM PT tonight. Comments will open when the show starts inside the Dolby Theatre. Come for the cynicism. Stay for the subversion. Add your opinion. WARNING: Not for the easily offended or ridiculously naive.
To understand the Academy Awards is to understand that Tinseltown is fueled by the green-eyed monster. Envy and spite will determine the winners. Because best productions or performances have nothing to do with the 24 categories awarded tonight. The negatives, not positives, will decide this year’s Oscars. That’s par for the course in Hollywood, where nastiness rules and niceness gets rolled. How else to explain why the horrible Harvey Weinstein is trying for his 3rd straight Best Picture?
Everything in Hollywood is agenda driven. That’s why I always say, when it comes to its biggest awards, what’s important are the scars, not the Oscars. Here’s how to handicap them: just look for whomever is envied most by members of the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and bet those names probably won’t get called onstage tonight. That’s why few think Steven Spielberg has any real shot at Best Director or his Lincoln at Best Picture. Of course he thinks he deserves both. But when you’ve been moviedom’s legend for seemingly forever, the Academy voters can’t wait to knock you off your pedestal. OK, I’ll say it; Hollywood actually hates … Read More »
Walter Hill Honored In Rome
Walter Hill will receive the Maverick Director Award at the Rome Film Festival in November. Hill’s latest film, Bullet To The Head, will world premiere at the fest with star Sylvester Stallone in attendance. The new Maverick prize is designed to honor filmmakers who have broken ground in cinema and “consistently stand out from the crowd,” the festival says. Hill’s credits as director include The Warriors, 48 Hrs. and Streets Of Fire. He also produced Prometheus, Alien and wrote the scripts for John Huston’s The Mackintosh Man and Sam Peckinpah’s The Getaway. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Don Mischer will get to produce a TV special starring Eddie Murphy after all. Mischer, who produced this year’s Academy Awards that had Murphy attached as host early on, will executive produce a televised tribute to the comedy actor, which will air on Spike TV. Titled Eddie Murphy: One Night Only, the event will tape on Saturday, November 3 at the Saban Theatre in Los Angeles for a broadcast on Nov. 16 on Spike TV. The special will mark 30 years since the release of Murphy’s famous stand-up special Delirious! and the film 48 Hrs., which made him a movie star.
It will highlight Murphy’s career from a 15-year-old aspiring comedian to a Saturday Night Live breakout and a comedy feature superstar and will feature Murphy’s co-stars from many of his films including 48 Hrs., Trading Places, Beverly Hills Cop, Coming To America, The Nutty Professor, Shrek, and Dreamgirls. The two-hour show will include short films, musical performances and sketch comedy, culminating in an appearance by Murphy. Read More »
Todd Allen has joined the still-growing ensemble for Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained as plantation overseer Dollar Bill. He joins Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Kerry Washingon, Samuel L. Jackson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kurt Russell, Anthony LaPaglia and Don Johnson among others. Allen’s previous credits include Friday Night Lights, CSI, NCIS, Chicago Hope and features The Postman, The Apostle, Broken Hill and 48 HRS.
Lifetime’s controversial movie about the murder trial and conviction of American exchange student Amanda Knox in Italy will get an update in light of today’s court verdict that acquitted Knox and her ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito of the 2007 murder of Knox’s roommate Meredith Kercher. From now on, rebroadcasts of Amanda Knox: Murder On Trial In Italy will include a new opening and closing card that includes updated information on Knox’s successful appeal and acquittal. Viewers will see the difference tomorrow night as the movie is scheduled to air at 9 PM, followed by a 1 AM broadcast on Wednesday and another primetime showing, at 10 PM on Thursday. According to a Lifetime rep, the airings had been scheduled weeks in advance and their timing in respect to Knox’s verdict was completely coincidental (but certainly fortuitous as it will likely bring extra eyeballs to the movie in light of all the publicity surrounding the overturned conviction). As of now, there are no plans to do a sequel to the movie, which starred Heroes alumna Hayden Panettiere as Knox. Read More »
UPDATE: Eddie Murphy Agrees To Host Oscars; Announcement Shortly
EXCLUSIVE: Eddie Murphy In Talks To Host 84th Oscars
Beverly Hills, CA — Oscar® nominee Eddie Murphy, whose performing career spans movies, television and the stage, will host this year’s Academy Awards show on Sunday, February 26, 2012, telecast producers Brett Ratner and Don Mischer announced today. This will be Murphy’s first hosting stint on the Oscars®.
“Eddie is a comedic genius, one of the greatest and most influential live performers ever,” said Ratner. “With his love of movies, history of crafting unforgettable characters and his iconic performances – especially on stage – I know he will bring excitement, spontaneity and tremendous heart to the show Don and I want to produce in February.”
Commented Mischer, “Eddie is a truly ground-breaking performer, whose amazingly diverse array of roles has won him a devoted audience of all ages. His quick wit and charisma will serve him very well as Oscar host.”
“I am enormously honored to join the great list of past Academy Award hosts from Hope and Carson to Crystal, Martin and Goldberg, among others,” said Murphy. “I’m looking forward to working with Brett and Don on creating a show that is enjoyable for both the fans at home and for the audience at the Kodak Theatre as we all come together to celebrate and recognize the great film contributions and collaborations from the past year.”
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Jeff Eastin isn’t expecting a whole lot of Emmy love for White Collar, the USA Network personality procedural that he created and runs. But if his show isn’t in a league with the Mad Men and Boardwalk Empire crowd, its ratings eclipse them all as the top-rated scripted drama on cable with both adults 18-49 and 25-54. Now that White Collar has launched its 3rd season on June 7, Eastin spoke with Deadline TV contributor Ray Richmond about how the perception of USA is beginning to change and the frustrations of the dramatic comedy hybrid:
DEADLINE: Why do you think it is that shows like White Collar always are passed over at Emmy time?
JEFF EASTIN: There are probably a couple of reasons. First probably has to be the fact that there’s been a perception in years past that shows on USA are lighter and fluffy and don’t have the gravitas of a Mad Men. But I think that especially lately, there’s been a move toward being taken more seriously. The second reason we’re not on the awards radar is probably that we’re so successful. I think the prevailing wisdom is that you can’t be the top scripted drama in the prime demos and also embody quality. I was in Paris last year, and it shocked me how many Americans living over there watch the show. But the conversation always went, ‘Of course I watch Mad Men, and I have to say I also watch White … Read More »
CBS Schedule: Why Are ‘CSI’ & ‘Good Wife’ Moving? Original Series On Saturday?!
For a second year in a row, CBS made the biggest scheduling move, taking veteran CSI out of Thursday after 10 years and launching new drama Person of Interest in the marquee 9 PM slot. CSI is relocating to Wednesdays 10 PM. Other major moves: CBS sending The Good Wife to Sundays and is bringing original scripted programming to Saturday night with Rules of Engagement:
CBS announced today its new 2011-2012 primetime schedule, ordering five new series and making key time-period moves for CSI and THE GOOD WIFE to strengthen its already top-rated primetime lineup. CBS will, once again, finish the season as America’s most watched network, marking the eighth time it has done so in the last nine years.
The new series include three new dramas and two new comedies: PERSON OF INTEREST, a crime thriller from renowned executive producer J.J. Abrams starring Jim Caviezel, Emmy Award winner Michael Emerson and Academy Award nominee Taraji P. Henson; UNFORGETTABLE, starring Dylan Walsh and Poppy Montgomery as a former detective with a rare condition that enables her to remember virtually every detail from every day of her life; A GIFTED MAN about a preeminent surgeon whose life changes forever when his deceased ex-wife returns, starring Patrick Wilson and Jennifer Ehle; 2 BROKE GIRLS, a comedy about two strikingly different young waitresses who form an unlikely friendship, starring Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs; and an odd-couple comedy, HOW TO BE A GENTLEMAN, starring David Hornsby and Kevin Dillon, about a refined magazine columnist and his very unrefined personal trainer.
The freshman series will be joined by 19 returning shows, including the season’s #1 drama/scripted series, NCIS; #1 comedy, THE BIG BANG THEORY; #1 news magazine, 60 MINUTES; # 1 new comedy, MIKE & MOLLY; along with two franchise reality series, SURVIVOR and the seven-time Emmy Award winner, THE AMAZING RACE.
The other returning series include: HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER; HAWAII FIVE-0; NCIS: LOS ANGELES; CRIMINAL MINDS; CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION; THE MENTALIST; CSI: NY; BLUE BLOODS; RULES OF ENGAGEMENT; 48 HOURS MYSTERY; THE GOOD WIFE; and CSI: MIAMI.
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On the heels of the family of convicted killer Amanda Knox objecting to Lifetime’s upcoming telefilm about her controversial trial, lawyers for the infamous U.S. student and her ex-boyfriend who were found guilty of killing Knox’s roommate in Italy, have asked the cable channel to pull the movie. According to news reports, attorneys Carlo Dalla Vedova and Luca Maori have sent a formal letter to Lifetime demanding that the movie is quashed and its trailer removed from the network’s website as the case is going through an appeal. They are threatening legal action if the network doesn’t do so by Feb. 10.
Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy, which stars Heroes alumna Hayden Panettiere as Knox, is scheduled to premiere on Feb. 21. Knox became an instant international celebrity (nicknamed Foxy Knoxy) when she was arrested in 2007 for the gruesome murder of her British roommate inside the duo’s cottage in the medieval Italian town of Perugia after what prosecutors said was a violent night fueled by sex and drugs. After an 11-month … Read More »
She starts October 1st. Gottlieb left ICM to head Alec Baldwin’s production company, El Dorado Pictures, and then develop projects for her husband, director/producer Walter Hill. Of course, most of her former clients scattered: Eddie Murphy, Keanu Reeves, Helen Mirren, Christopher Guest and Bill Paxton. But I’ve always loved the story of how Hildy jump-started Murphy’s film career. The 19 year old Eddie came out of the New York comedy clubs to join SNL’s 1980-1981 season as only a featured player, not even a regular. At the time, Gottlieb had just been hired away from J. Michael Bloom. The youngest of ICM’s film agents, she one day received a phone call from ICM’s personal appearances department asking for her help: the agency had just signed a young black comic who was going to start on SNL but wanted to do movies. With that, Gottlieb officially had her first ICM actor client, though she didn’t even know what Eddie Murphy looked like, or if he were talented. (Of course, when the first SNL finally aired, Gottlieb thought the kid was great.) Before the fall TV season started, she set up meetings for Murphy with a number of producers and studio execs. But no one recognized his potential. Instead they told Gottlieb over and over that, sorry, they couldn’t star a black actor in a movie for white audiences. Only Universal’s Jennings Lang made a deal for Murphy. But when the script … Read More »