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Deadline Hollywood’s Pete Hammond Wins 50th Annual Publicists Award: Hooray!

By | Friday February 22, 2013 @ 2:02pm PST

Both Deadline Film Editor Mike Fleming and Deadline Awards Columnist Pete Hammond were nominated for the 50th Annual Publicists Award this year. At the gala luncheon held today, the Publicists of the International Cinematographers Guild (IATSE Local 600) announced that Hammond won. (Like it would have killed you flacks to give it to both our guys?) Pete now becomes only the second journalist to win this award twice. Deadline TV Editor Nellie Andreeva was nominated last year. And, believe it or not, I was nominated in 2008. (Everybody immediately thought it was a hoax.) What an incredible showing for our small staff! Deadline is very proud of all our nominees and this year’s winner.

Other winners were announced in four categories: the Les Mason Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor they can bestow on one of their members, went to Heidi Schaeffer, vice president PMKBNC Public Relations; the International Media Award ominees went to James White (UK); Excellence in Unit Still Photography in Motion Pictures went to Jamie Trueblood; the television still photography was won by Suzanne Tenner.

Also honored at the event were Kirk Douglas with a Lifetime Achievement Award; Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, with the Motion Picture Showmanship Award; Chris McCumber and Jeff Wachtel, co-presidents of USA Network, with the Television Showmanship Award; the Maxwell Weinberg Showmanship Awards for motion pictures and television and the Bob Yeager Award, which recognizes significant community service.

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Deadline’s Mike Fleming & Pete Hammond Nominated For 50th Annual Publicists Award

By | Tuesday January 22, 2013 @ 10:52am PST

Los Angeles, January 22, 2013 – The Publicists of the International Cinematographers Guild (IATSE Local 600) have> announced nominees in four categories, with the winners to be announced at their 50th Annual Awards Luncheon to be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Friday, February 22.

Nominees for the Les Mason Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor they can bestow on one of their members, are Hilary Clark, an independent publicist; Sheryl Main, unit publicist; Heidi Schaeffer, vice president PMKBNC Public Relations; Murray Weissman, founder/chairman of Weissman/Markovitz Communications and Deborah Wuliger, unit publicist.

Nominees for the Press Award honoring members of the American media are Mike Fleming (Deadline Hollywood), Pete Hammond (Deadline Hollywood), Jeff Jensen (Entertainment Weekly), David Karger (Fandango), Scott Mantz (Access Hollywood), and Alex Ben Block (The Hollywood Reporter).

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Oscar Predictions By Pete Hammond

By | Sunday February 26, 2012 @ 2:35pm PST

OSCARS: Pete Hammond’s Final Academy Award Predictions In All 24 Categories (originally posted Thursday AM)

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ENTV: Hammond’s Golden Globes Analysis

By | Monday January 16, 2012 @ 10:30pm PST

Deadline Hollywood’s ENTV presents Awards Columnist Pete Hammond’s 2012 Golden Globes analysis — first up is movies, followed by TV:

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OSCAR: Noomi Rapace Q&A

Pete Hammond

This year Hollywood types everywhere were discussing the Swedish films made from Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy of books – The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest. Noomi Rapace has already won the Swedish equivalency for her portrayal of Lisbeth Salander. But the most recent actress to appear in a small foreign film, get an out–of–the–blue nomination, win the Best Actress Oscar, then land big roles in major studio tentpoles was Marion Cotillard. Noomi’s U.S. agents and managers have assured her: “You can have that same journey.” Pete Hammond recently spoke to Noomi Rapace about her role and Oscar chances:

DEADLINE: What do you think of the American remake of these movies that David Fincher is directing in Sweden?
NOOMI RAPACE: That’s weird. They’re doing it with a Swedish accent as well. That’s also pretty weird. But I’m quite okay with it. I really knew in my heart that I totally loaned myself to her and she took over most of my life. When it was released and they started to talk about the remake, people asked me and I said. ‘No, I’m done with her.’ And then everybody came back to me and said, ‘But it’s David Fincher.’ There can’t be any reason to do it again. I don’t want to repeat myself. Hopefully they will do something far away from our films.

DEADLINE: Are you the kind of actor who can leave the Read More »

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OSCAR: No T-Day Slowdown For Contenders

Pete Hammond

Traditionally, most Hollywood businesses grind to a halt for the 5-day Thanksgiving holiday. But not this wide-open awards season. Tangled had its official Academy screening last Sunday morning but only drew about 200 people. Instead, the holidays actually seem like a good time to push an animated Disney musical. So Disney isn’t even taking Turkey Day off: instead, the studio has skedded screenings of Tangled at the DGA open to all Guild and Academy members. This isn’t actually a new practice. In the past, Oscar hopefuls like Dreamgirls, The Lord Of The Rings, and others have done the same thing at the DGA theater drawing surprisingly strong crowds of potential voters on a day most people are thought to stay at home. Disney also sent a note warning some early voting groups that they wouldn’t be able to send screeners of the film before deadlines for ballots (piracy concerns are part of that problem), so the T-Day screenings take on even greater import.

Tangled aside, distributors have been rushing to get screeners in as many voter hands as possible before Thanksgiving when they think people will have more time on their hands to pop a DVD in the player before the real crunch comes in December. Among those sent in the last few days are The Social Network, Made In Dagenham, Inside Job, Stone, Let Me In, 127 Hours, Black Swan, Conviction, Never Let Me Go, Toy Story 3, Winter’s Bone, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1,  The Town, Inception, Hereafter, Legends Of The Guardians: The Owls of Ga’hoole, and The Ghost Writer.

Meanwhile, campaign season continues. Over the weekend, American Cinematheque also proved why it can be a very useful tool during awards season by hosting two sold-out events  for Oscar hopefuls. Saturday night, there was a tribute to Pierce Brosnan at the Aero in Santa Monica with a double feature of Roman Polanski’s The Ghost Writer and Matador. Inbetween, Pierce appeared for a nearly hour-long Q&A (I moderated) in which he discussed his career from TV’s Remington Steele to James Bond to an Roman Polanski’s Ghost Writer in which he plays ex-British Prime Minister (Tony Blair, anyone?) now writing his controversial memoir. Summit Entertainment is hoping the pic will land him in the Best Supporting Actor conversation. Its early February release is a hindrance but by having a toney organization like American Cinematheque create these little tribute evenings, studios believe they can get the “right” kind of association for their contenders.

It was completely sold out, as was the next night at the same venue which hosted a Q&A session with writer Aaron Sorkin and stars Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield and Armie Hammer following a special screening of Sony Pictures’ The Social Network. All were talking about the genius of Director David Fincher (away on location in Sweden shooting The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo remake) and the number of takes he would require of his actors. “Sometimes there would be 99 of them, but not 100, never 100,” Timberlake said. In an encouraging sign for writerly respect, most of the audience questions from the predominantly young crowd were surprisingly directed at Sorkin who said dialogue-heavy movie might have been written by Paddy Chayefsky in another era. Not bad company to be in since Paddy won no less than three screenwriting Oscars. Some are asking if there is any way Sorkin can lose the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar this year? Especially after The Social Network opened to near-unanimous acclaim and strong business for a drama.

Other Best Picture competitors were also active over the weekend Read More »

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OSCAR: Private Screenings Aplenty & ‘The Kids Are All Right’ Campaign Heats Up

Pete Hammond

Screening rooms all over town are booked solid for the tsunami of Q&A sessions being held for WGA, PGA, DGA, SAG and countless media organizations which host their own sponsored screenings of contenders. One SAG Nominating Committee member I ran into at the Arclight said he was skipping the screenings and just hopscotching from one Q&A to another. Someone was asking me this week if I thought there were more Q&As than usual this season. It seems like it but probably not, even though publicists are running their stars and filmmakers ragged trying to get them from one part of town to the other for two and sometimes three post-screening chat sessions in one day. Wednesday night alone at the Arclight in Hollywood, there seemed to be as many “private screening” notices on the multi-screen electronic box office marquee as there were regular features playing. Paul Giamatti was being shuttled from one house to another to talk up his new Sony Classics film, Barney’s Version. And Jada Pinkett Smith and co-star Michael Vartan were also there doing a session in front of SAG nominating committee members in hopes of gaining attention for their TNT medical drama, Hawthorne. (Pinkett–Smith fielded questions like “How do I get financing for my movie?” to “Would you consider making a sports movie? I have a script.”) Despite having won every imaginable trophy several times over (including two consecutive SAG ensemble awards), Mad Men isn’t giving it a rest and … Read More »

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OSCAR: Disney’s Rich Ross Says “We’re Going For The Best Picture Win” For ‘Toy Story 3′

Pete Hammond

EXCLUSIVE: “We’re going for the Best Picture win. We wanted to have the best movie and the reviews have clearly said that and it’s the number one box office hit of the year so I’m not sure why we would not go for it all,” the Walt Disney Studios Chairman Rich Ross told me in a phone conversation this week. He’s talking about their worldwide billion dollar grosser Toy Story 3 which also sits atop Rotten Tomatoes chart of the best reviewed films of the year, at least those in wide release. To that end Disney/Pixar will launch an ambitious advertising campaign aimed squarely at Academy members this week that will blatantly try to associate past Best Picture winners with TS3 by having Toy Story characters enact some iconic images from Oscar winning films like West Side Story, On The Waterfront, Shakespeare In Love, Silence Of The Lambs, Titanic, The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King and Forrest Gump (which will feature the Woody character voiced of course by ‘Gump’ star Tom Hanks – get it?). There are potentially more than 20 different ads they will create, but some, like Lambs, which features a disembodied Mr. Potato Head, still are being cleared by various parties. The campaign which uses the phrase ‘Not Since’ will launch with The Godfather Part II in which Lotso, the mob boss-like bear emulates Al Pacino. Since that film (and Rings) were rare instances of … Read More »

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Pete Hammond Remembers Ronni Chasen

Pete Hammond

Showbiz Publicists Help Ronni Chasen’s Firm
R.I.P. Ronni Chasen
Oscar Publicist Ronni Chasen Shot And Killed In Beverly Hills Driving Back From ‘Burlesque’ Premiere In Hollywood

Of all my time in this business I can think of no one more dedicated to her clients, more doggedly determined to help them achieve their goals. In many ways, Ronni always reminded me of a sort of lost breed of press agent and she would always bend over backwards to help with a story. She also had the driest, most acerbic sense of humor. Yes she was no bullshit and very straightforward. She was persistent, yes, but also knew when to hold back. This is unbelievable to think I won’t be seeing her anymore. There was barely an event, an awards show, a premiere, a party, or any number of press things where I didn’t see her. The last was the Governors Awards Saturday. Recently we met in the Polo Lounge with her longtime client Dick Zanuck. She told me she couldn’t think of three other times in the decades she had been working with him that he agreed to an interview like that. And then when the story ran, she emailed me from Paris where she was travelling to say he really liked it.

She always made me feel special. As a film … Read More »

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OSCAR: Rapunzel, Marty, Leo Start Campaigns

Pete Hammond

A Best Song nod could be Tangled’s best shot at Oscar recognition this year after today’s Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science confirmation that just 15 movies have qualified for Best Animated Feature. That’s one short of the 16 needed to trigger five nominations instead of three. With Toy Story 3 and How To Train Your Dragon virtually assured of two of those slots, it will be a real dogfight now for the third position. Tangled composer Alan Menken tells me that, to regain some winning momentum (and maybe tie Alfred Newman for the most music victories in Academy history), he plans to let Disney only submit one song from Tangled: the love ballad, “I See The Light”, sung by Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi, which he thinks has a better shot than some of the more up tempo tunes in the toon. This way, Menken doesn’t risk cancelling himself out again like what happened when his three nominated Enchanted songs were bested by “Falling Slowly” from Once.

He’s adamant about entering just one song even though Academy rules would now allow two. He also bemoans the fact that his score is ineligible due to a rule imposed after music branch complaints when Menken won all those previous Oscars. He does admit though that “if I weren’t me, I would probably be complaining too”. Menken is an 8-time Oscar winner for Beauty And The Beast, Aladdin, The Little Read More »

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OSCAR: AFI Fest Closes With Rapturous ‘Black Swan’ Premiere

Pete Hammond

Thursday night’s AFI Fest closer Black Swan fell in line with similar past fest triumphs at Venice, Telluride and Toronto earning huge applause and lots of Oscar talk, especially for star Natalie Portman whom director Darren Aronofsky introduced to the crowd before the screening along with her co-stars Barbara Hershey, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis and Winona Ryder. He particularly tried to goose the applause meter for Ryder, who makes a strong impression in a small role as a fading diva. ”Come on people, I mean it’s Winona Ryder,” he said while she tried to make the long run to the front. “I guess people in Los Angeles are used to seeing movie stars. It’s not that way in New York.” He then really got pumped when he spotted a certain action hero in the audience. “Sylvester Stallone is here tonight!” Arononfsky was also excited to have the film premiere at “the Chinese Mann, my favorite theatre” but seemed a little flustered trying to remember all the key people to thank. Until his producer Scott Frankin nudged him he completely forgot Phoenix Pictures, which had started development on the film ten years ago. Phoenix’s  Mike Medavoy and Arnold Messer are among the film’s (4) producers and David Thwaites and Brad Fischer exec produced (2 of 8 credited). Afterwards Medavoy and Fischer were soaking up praise in the lobby and Fischer said he kidded Darren about the “oversight”. Fischer said it was true the movie, originally an All About Eve-ish backstage story called The Understudy, almost completely fell apart just a few weeks before production until the other credited producer Brian Oliver came in and saved the day, a fact Aronofsky did not forget in his opening remarks. Fischer said Aronofsky was originally attached right after he made his first splash with Pi but it took a decade before it came full circle back to him. Read More »

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Deadline Hires Pete Hammond From LA Times /Envelope’s “Notes On A Season”




LOS ANGELES – September 1, 2010: is expanding its film and television awards coverage for the 2010-2011 season and beyond. Media Corporation’s Jay Penske and’s Nikki Finke today announced the hiring of Pete Hammond, the well-known Los Angeles Times/The Envelope’s “Notes On A Season” blog columnist and former Variety contributor who is widely considered the preeminent awards season commentator for film and television. Effective immediately, he becomes the Awards Columnist. His breaking news and analysis will also be offered on to reach a consumer audience as well as Deadline’s industry readership. Hammond also will be contributing original columns to Deadline|Hollywood’s's five planned print newsletters during this awards season. It is Deadline’s intention to own the awards space, helped by Pete’s unique understanding of the behind-the-scenes of this very specialized process when the entertainment industry is fixated on grabbing the gold.

With the 2010 hirings of top journalism talents Mike Fleming, Nellie Andreeva, Tim Adler, and now Pete Hammond, continues its next phase of editorial expansion to dominate the Hollywood news and commentary arena in both film and television so the website can remain a “must-read” for influencers and leaders in the global entertainment and media business. Hammond’s status and reputation fit perfectly with the tradition of shattering the mold of traditional reporting and creating a new paradigm for delivering news and opinion with New Media immediacy.

“We are thrilled that Pete has joined our talented team at,” commented MMC Founder and CEO, Jay Penske. “He has become one of the entertainment industry’s most prominent and visible awards journalists during his tenure at the Los Angeles Times –and we felt it was essential for to address the needs of our audience, partners, and advertisers by hiring someone of Pete’s caliber to continue our site’s ascendancy.”

Said Finke, Deadline’s General Manager and Editor-in-Chief: “I realized that if Deadline Hollywood was going to offer expanded awards season coverage, we had to find someone of Mike’s, Nellie’s, and Tim’s caliber. Pete Hammond is a very well-established brand in this arena, and he’s among the most knowledgeable and insightful people on film and television I’ve ever encountered. If awards season is Hollywood’s Super Bowl, then Pete is the quarterback calling many of the plays. I am delighted that Jay and I could convince him to come over because hiring Pete is a game changer for Deadline|Hollywood.”

Said Hammond, “I am thrilled to bring my views and news on the Hollywood awards scene to readers of Deadline and Movieline and to be working with Jay, Nikki, and Charles and everyone at MMC in making it all happen starting this season. While I loved writing for the Los Angeles Times/The Envelope, I am really looking forward to ramping it up and taking it to the next level on two of the web’s premier sites.”

“Having Pete on board gives a whole new dimension to our academy strategy for both Deadline Hollywood and Movieline. His depth of knowledge and relationships in the industry is unparalleled,” said Lynne Segall, Publisher & Vice President of MMC entertainment. “It is fantastic to have one of the town’s foremost awards experts on our team.”

Pete Hammond is a writer, producer, movie critic, and film historian. During Hollywood’s awards season in recent years, he has been a regular contributing columnist for the online and print editions of the Los Angeles Times/The Envelope, where he wrote the well-read “Notes On A Season” blog. He formerly was a regular contributor to Variety about the Cannes Film Festival, AFI Fest, Golden Globes, and Academy Awards. His film and TV analysis and commentary has appeared in print, on air, and online for numerous media outlets including The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Entertainment Weekly, New York Magazine, NBC Nightly News, the CBC, and the BBC. Additionally, Pete hosts the extremely popular year-round KCET Cinema Series and is the instructor for UCLA Extension’s Sneak Preview Winter Session where he shows films prior to release and interviews the filmmakers.

His unique and reknowned interviewing and moderating skills have been utilized by Variety for their Annual Awards Screening Series as well as by the American Film Institute, American Cinematheque, the Screen Actors Guild, the Directors Guild Of America, the Writers Guild Of America, the Academy Of Television Arts & Sciences, and BAFTA, in addition to film festivals and entertainment conferences around the world. Pete recently has been a regular on-camera presence profiling celebrities on the Biography Channel’s series “Famous” and the longtime Contributing Editor for the bestselling Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide. He was also co-author of Behind the Silver Screen. He is the recipient of five Emmy nominations for his television writing and served four years on the TV Academy’s Board of Governors representing writers. Prior to becoming an awards season analyst and film critic, Pete was a full-time consultant to the AMC Network.


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