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Oscar Nominee Jennifer Lawrence In Talks For Oliver Stone’s ‘Savages’

By | Thursday February 10, 2011 @ 3:14pm PST
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Oscar-nominated Winter’s Bone star Jennifer Lawrence is in talks to star in Savages, the Oliver Stone-directed adaptation of the bestselling novel by Don Winslow. Shooting will begin in June.

The book is a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid-style love triangle between two best friend pot growers and O, the wild child girlfriend they share.  O will be played by Lawrence, who has become widely courted for roles since  studios saw her performance as the teenager desperate to save her family home in Winter’s Bone.  Somehow, sharing a bed with O created no discord in the relationship between brainy botanist Ben and Chon, a hardcore ex-Navy SEAL who returned from Afghanistan with top-quality pot and a total lack of remorse for killing to protect his pals. They live a quiet lucrative existence in Laguna Beach, growing and distributing their primo pot. Stone has been meeting with top actors to play Ben and Chon, a list that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Aaron Johnson, Tom Hardy, James Franco and Tron Legacy‘s Garrett Hedlund. He’s also courting Benicio Del Toro for the role of an Mexican drug cartel enforcer sent to muscle Ben and Chon out of business. When they resist, O gets kidnapped and the ransom is every ill-gotten cent they’ve made. They hatch a complex plan to get her back and then disappear. Read More »

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‘The Rite’ #1, ‘The Mechanic’ #4; Best Picture Nominees Begin Oscar Bumps

SATURDAY PM/SUNDAY AM: The big news this weekend wasn’t just seeing whether domestic grosses were depressed on the post-blizzard East Coast (they weren’t), but also which movies received Oscar bumps given that the Academy Award nominations were announced this past Tuesday (all of them still in theaters). Some like The King’s Speech, 127 Hours, Blue Valentine (because of Michelle Williams’ Best Actress nom), and Rabbit Hole (due to Nicole Kidman’s), all expanded their runs. True Grit, Black Swan, The Fighter, are still in the thick of their releases and held very well, including Golden Globe Best Drama winner The Social Network in limited release for a return engagement to improve on its $96M domestic cume. (But King’s Speech attendance could soar if The Weinstein Co succeeds in creating a PG-13 version for exhibitors and educators who want the R-rated movie available to a bigger audience.)

As for this weekend’s newcomers, studios hoped that house-bound blizzard victims would dig out and go to the movies on this football-less Sunday. Warner Bros’ exorcism genre pic The Rite starring Anthony Hopkins and playing in 2,985 theaters came in #1 with approximately $15 million. CBS Films released hit man flick The Mechanic with 2,703 runs for #3 Friday. But the Jason Statham starrer fell to 4th Sunday with $11.5M. CBS Films paid $5M for the distribution rights and the pic supposedly will be in profit if its domestic run gets to the mid-$20sM. “It’s coming in where we expected,” one insider tells me. “I’d rather our … Read More »

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OSCAR: Hammond Analyzes Nominations: Where Does The Race Head Now?

Pete Hammond

Has The King’s Speech, fresh off that Producers Guild win and now leading with 12 Oscar nominations, just gone to the front of the class? My guess is this one could be a squeaker. Presumed Academy Awards co-frontrunner and critics favorite The Social Network trailed with only 8 nominations but they were the right ones: an Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences’ Best Picture winner might expect to have Cinematography and Editing and Sound Mixing and Music plus acting, writing, and directing. And The Fighter also is still in there strongly in key categories (7 noms overall) as well as film editing, an important one since as all pundits know it’s difficult to win Best Picture without at least also gaining an editing nod. The last movie to do that was Ordinary People some 30 years ago. That’s bad news for Best Pic nominees True Grit, which other than its editing snub did spectacularly well with 10 nominations, and most surprisingly Inception which, despite 8 other nominations, also sported an even bigger snub in addition to no editing honor with director Christopher Nolan again being passed over on the Directors honor roll.

It’s déjà vu for Chris who was nominated for a DGA award for The Dark Knight two years ago but found himself left out in the cold by Oscar not only for Director but also Screenplay and Picture. At least Nolan received the latter two nominations today. But with the popularity and critical acclaim he received for Inception, Read More »

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OSCAR: Category Nominations Per Picture

83rd Annual Academy Award Nominations

NOMINATIONS BY PICTURE
(In alphabetical order; does not include Short Films or Documentary Short Subjects)

Alice in Wonderland, A Walt Disney Pictures Production (Walt Disney) – 3 nominations
Art direction
Costume design
Visual effects

Animal Kingdom, A Porchlight Films Production (Sony Pictures Classics) – 1 nomination
Jacki Weaver – Performance by an actress in a supporting role

Another Year, a Thin Man Films Production (Sony Pictures Classics) – 1 nomination
Original screenplay

Barney’s Version, a Serendipity Point Films Production (Sony Pictures Classics) – 1 nomination
Makeup

Biutiful, a Menage Atroz, Mod Producciones and Ikiru Films Production (Roadside Attractions) – 2 nominations
Javier Bardem – Performance by an actor in a leading role
Best foreign language film (Mexico)

Black Swan, a Protozoa and Phoenix Pictures Production (Fox Searchlight) – 5 nominations
Natalie Portman – Performance by an actress in a leading role
Cinematography
Directing
Film editing
Best picture

Blue Valentine, a Silverwood Films and Hunting Lane Films Production (The Weinstein Company) – 1 nomination
Michelle Williams – Performance by an actress in a leading role

Country Strong, a Material Pictures Production (Sony Pictures Releasing/Screen Gems) – 1 nomination
Original song – Coming Home

Dogtooth, a Boo Production (Kino International) – 1 nomination
Best foreign language film (Greece)

Exit through the Gift Shop, a Paranoid Pictures Production (Producers Distribution Agency) – 1 nomination
Documentary feature

The Fighter, a Relativity Media Production (Paramount) – 7 nominations
Christian Bale – Performance by an actor in a supporting role
Amy

Read More »

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OSCAR: Today’s Nominations By Picture

83RD AWARDS
Feature Films With 2 Or More Nominations
(No Short Films or Documentary Short Subjects.)

The King’s Speech – The Weinstein Company 12
True Grit – Paramount 10
Inception - Warner Bros 8
The Social Network - Sony Pictures Releasing 8
The Fighter – Paramount 7
127 Hours - Fox Searchlight 6
Black Swan – Fox Searchlight 5
Toy Story 3 – Walt Disney 5
The Kids Are All Right – Focus Features 4
Winter’s Bone – Roadside Attractions 4
Alice in Wonderland – Walt Disney 3
Biutiful – Roadside Attractions 2
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 – Warner Bros 2
How to Train Your Dragon – Paramount 2

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83rd Annual Academy Award Nominations: ‘King’s Speech’ Leads With 12; ‘True Grit’ 10, ‘Social Network’ And ‘Inception’ 8 (But Nolan Blanked Again For Best Director)

BEVERLY HILLS: Beverly Hills, CA (January 25, 2011) – Nominations for the 83rd Academy Awards were announced today (Tuesday, January 25) by Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak and 2009 Oscar® winner Mo’Nique. Sherak and Mo’Nique, who won an Academy Award® for her supporting performance in “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire,” announced the nominees in 10 of the 24 Award categories at a 5:38 a.m. PT live news conference attended by more than 400 international media representatives.

Academy members from each of the branches vote to determine the nominees in their respective categories – actors nominate actors, film editors nominate film editors, etc. In the Animated Feature Film and Foreign Language Film categories, nominations are selected by vote of multi-branch screening committees. All voting members are eligible to select the Best Picture nominees. Nominations ballots were mailed to the 5,755 voting members in late December and were returned directly to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the international accounting firm, for tabulation. Official screenings of all motion pictures with one or more nominations will begin for members this weekend at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater. Screenings also will be held at the Academy’s Linwood Dunn Theater in Hollywood and in London, New York and the San Francisco Bay Area. All active and life members of the Academy are eligible to select the winners in all categories, although in five of them – Animated Short Film, Live Action Short Film, Documentary Feature, Documentary Short Subject and Foreign Language Film – members can vote only if they have seen all of the nominated films in those categories.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network beginning at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

Here are today’s nominations:

BEST PICTURE
127 HOURS (Fox Searchlight)
An Hours Production Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight)
A Protozoa and Phoenix Pictures Production Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
INCEPTION (Warner Bros)
A Warner Bros. UK Services Production Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
THE FIGHTER (Paramount)
A Relativity Media Production David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT (Focus Features)
An Antidote Films, Mandalay Vision and Gilbert Films Production Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Co)
A See-Saw Films and Bedlam Production Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Sony Pictures)
A Columbia Pictures Production Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
TOY STORY 3 (Walt Disney)
A Pixar Production Darla K. Anderson, Producer
TRUE GRIT (Paramount)
A Paramount Pictures Production Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
WINTER’S BONE (Roadside Attractions)
A Winter’s Bone Production Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

BEST ACTOR
JEFF BRIDGES – TRUE GRIT (Paramount)
JAVIER BARDEM – BIUTIFUL (Roadside Attractions)
JESSE EISENBERG – THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Sony Pictures)
COLIN FIRTH – THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Company)
JAMES FRANCO – 127 HOURS (Fox Searchlight)

BEST ACTRESS
ANNETTE BENING – THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT (Focus Features)
NICOLE KIDMAN – RABBIT HOLE (Lionsgate)
JENNIFER LAWRENCE – WINTER’S BONE (Roadside Attractions)
NATALIE PORTMAN – BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight)
MICHELLE WILLIAMS – BLUE VALENTINE (The Weinstein Co)

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
CHRISTIAN BALE – THE FIGHTER (Paramount)
JOHN HAWKES – WINTER’S BONE (Roadside Attractions)
JEREMY RENNER – THE TOWN (Warner Bros)
MARK RUFFALO – THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT (Focus Features)
GEOFFREY RUSH – THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Company)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
AMY ADAMS – THE FIGHTER (Paramount)
HELENA BONHAM CARTER – THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Company)
MELISSA LEO – THE FIGHTER (Paramount)
HAILEE STEINFELD – TRUE GRIT (Paramount)
JACKI WEAVER – ANIMAL KINGDOM (Sony Pictures Classics)

BEST ANIMATED PICTURE
HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON (DreamWorks Animation)
TOY STORY 3 (Walt Disney)
THE ILLUSIONIST (Sony Pictures Classics)

BEST DIRECTOR
DARREN ARONOFSKY – BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight)
DAVID FINCHER – THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Sony Pictures)
TOM HOOPER – THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Co.)
JOEL AND ETHAN COEN – TRUE GRIT (Paramount)
DAVID O. RUSSELL – THE FIGHTER (Paramount)

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
ANOTHER YEAR, Mike Leigh (Sony Pictures Classics)
THE FIGHTER, Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson, Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson (Paramount)
INCEPTION, Christopher Nolan (Warner Bros)
THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT, Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg (Focus Features)
THE KING’S SPEECH, David Seidler (The Weinstein Co)

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
127 HOURS, Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy (Fox Searchlight)
TOY STORY 3, Michael Arndt, Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, and Lee Unkrich (Walt Disney)
THE SOCIAL NETWORK, Aaron Sorkin (Sony Pictures)
WINTER’S BONE, Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini (Roadside Attractions)
TRUE GRIT, Joel Coen & Ethan Coen (Paramount)

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Algeria, Hors la Loi (Outside the Law) (Cohen Media Group) – A Tassili Films Production
Canada, Incendies (Sony Pictures Classics) – A Micro-Scope Production
Denmark, In a Better World (Sony Pictures Classics) – A Zentropa Production
Greece, Dogtooth (Kino International) – A Boo Production
Mexico, Biutiful (Roadside Attractions) - A Menage Atroz, Mod Producciones and Ikiru Films Production

BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN CINEMATOGRAPHY
Black Swan (Fox Searchlight) – Matthew Libatique
Inception (Warner Bros.) – Wally Pfister
The King’s Speech (The Weinstein Company) – Danny Cohen
The Social Network (Sony Pictures Releasing) – Jeff Cronenweth
True Grit (Paramount) – Roger Deakins

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Exit Through The Gift Shop (Producers Distribution Agency) A Paranoid Pictures Production Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz
Gasland – A Gasland Production Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
Inside Job (Sony Pictures Classics) – A Representational Pictures Production Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
Restrepo (National Geographic Entertainment) – An Outpost Films Production Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
Waste Land (Arthouse Films) – An Almega Projects Production Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley

Read More »

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Chicago Crix Deliver Nominations

Mike Fleming

The Chicago Film Critics Association has released its nominations, covering many of the usual suspects who’ve lined other awards lists. Here is the list of nominees:

BEST PICTURE

Black Swan
Inception
The King’s Speech
The Social Network
Winter’s Bone

BEST DIRECTOR

Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
David Fincher, The Social Network
Debra Granik, Winter’s Bone
Tom Hooper, The King’s Speech
Christopher Nolan, Inception

BEST ACTOR

Jeff Bridges, True Grit
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours
Ryan Gosling, Blue Valentine

BEST ACTRESS

Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Jennifer Lawrence, Winter’s Bone
Lesley Manville, Another Year
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Michelle Williams, Blue Valentine

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Christian Bale, The Fighter
Andrew Garfield, The Social Network
John Hawkes, Winter’s Bone
Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King’s Speech
Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Black Swan, Mark Heyman, Andres Heinz & John McLaughlin
Four Lions, Jesse Armstrong, Sam Bain & Chris Morris
Inception, Christopher Nolan
The Kids Are All Right, Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
The King’s Speech, David Seidler

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Rabbit Hole, David Lindsay Abaire
The Social Network, Aaron Sorkin
Toy Story 3, Michael Arndt
True Grit, Joel & Ethan Coen
Winter’s Bone, Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Black Swan, Matthew Libatique
Inception, Wally Pfister
Shutter Island, Robert Richardson
The Social Network, Jeff Cronenweth
True Grit, Roger Deakins

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

Black Swan, Clint Mansell
I Am Love, John Adams
Inception, Hans Zimmer
The Social Network, Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
True Grit, Carter Burwell

BEST DOCUMENTARY

Exit Through the Gift Shop
Inside Job
Restrepo
The Tillman Story
Waiting for Superman

BEST FOREIGN-LANGUAGE FILM

Biutiful
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
I Am Love
Mother
A Prophet

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

Despicable Me
How to Train Your Dragon
The
Read More »

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Indie Spirit Nominations Could Predict Oscar

Pete Hammond

Analyzing today’s 26th Annual Independent Spirit Award nominations, I would say Winter’s Bone, the film that led with the most nods, is also the one to beat, particularly after its triumphs at Monday night’s Gotham Awards where it took the Best Ensemble and Best Feature awards. It is the kind of movie that personifies “indie spirit” and seems to have so much heat in that regard that several Oscar nominations could also be in the picture. It’s generally thought that, for the Best Actress Oscar, the race may come down to Annette Bening vs Natalie Portman, but at the Indie Spirits the front runner is most likely Winter’s Bones’ Jennifer Lawrence with her co-stars Dale Dickey and John Hawkes figuring as viable potential winners in their respective supporting categories as well. Place your bets.

Winter’s Bone led the indie Spirit race with 7 nods, along with The Kids Are All Right, Black Swan, and 127 Hours all nabbed Best Feature nominations. And it’s entirely possible, at least according to current conventional wisdom, that the same quartet will land four of the 10 Academy Awards Best Picture slots as well. This time around, there’s perhaps the closest correlation between the Spirits and Oscar’s Best Picture race seen in years. Which would indicate that, despite the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science’s attempt to broaden the field in the category to include more commercial entries, the indie spirit … Read More »

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2011 Indie Spirit Awards Nominations

Pete Hammond: Indie Spirit Nominations Could Predict Oscar

LOS ANGELES (November 30, 2010) – Film Independent, the non-profit arts organization that produces the Spirit Awards and the Los Angeles Film Festival, announced nominations this morning for the 2011 Film Independent Spirit Awards.  Eva Mendes and Jeremy Renner served as presenters and 2011 Spirit Awards host Joel McHale was also on hand.  Nominees for Best Feature include 127 Hours, Black Swan, Greenberg, The Kids Are All Right and Winter’s Bone.

Please Give was selected for the Robert Altman Award, which is given to one film’s director, casting director and ensemble cast.

“The artistic side of independent film is stronger than ever, and it’s especially impressive to see the developed craft of extraordinary independent filmmakers who have only gotten better over the years.  Past nominees such as Darren Aronofsky, Noah Baumbach, Danny Boyle, Lisa Cholodenko, Debra Granik, Nicole Holofcener and John Cameron Mitchell continue to create original and compelling films that move and amaze us.” said Film Independent Executive Director Dawn Hudson.

Selected from 220 submissions, this year’s winners will be announced at the Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday, February 26, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. on the beach in Santa Monica.  The 26th annual awards show will air exclusively that night on IFC at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.  Winners of the Filmmaker Grants will be highlighted during the Spirit Awards and announced at the 2011 Spirit Awards

Read More »

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‘Winter’s Bone’ Wins Big At Gotham Awards

The winners for the 20th Anniversary Gotham Independent Film Awards were announced tonight. The awards organized by the Independent Feature Project already announced the recipients of their honorary awards handed out this evening, including filmmaker Darren Aronofsky, actors Hilary Swank and Robert Duvall, and Focus Features CEO James Schamus. Tonight’s marquee category awards at Cipriani Wall Street in NYC are considered the first major ceremony of the awards season:

Best Feature
Winter’s Bone
Debra Granik, director; Anne Rosellini, Alix Madigan-Yorkin, producers (Roadside Attractions)

Best Documentary
The Oath
Laura Poitras, director/producer (Zeitgeist Films and American Documentary/POV)

Best Ensemble Performance
Winter’s Bone
Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Dale Dickey, Lauren Sweetser, Garret Dillahunt, Kevin Breznahan (Roadside Attractions)

Breakthrough Director

Kevin Asch for Holy Rollers (First Independent Pictures)

Breakthrough Actor
Ronald Bronstein
in Daddy Longlegs (IFC Films)

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You

Littlerock
Mike Ott, director; Frederick Thornton, Laura Ragsdale, Sierra Leoni, producers

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Sundance Institute: Film Forward 1st Slate

By | Monday November 29, 2010 @ 1:46pm PST

LOS ANGELES, CA – Following up on last month’s announcement of the Film Forward: Advancing Cultural Dialogue initiative, Sundance Institute announced today the ten films selected to participate in the inaugural year of this cultural exchange program. The first Film Forward slate includes five American and five international films which will be presented in collaboration with public and private partners. These films and their filmmakers will kick off the ambitious project in New York and Tunisia in December.

The five American films that will tour throughout the United States and abroad as part of the initiative are: A Small Act directed by Jennifer Arnold; Amreeka directed by Cherien Dabis; Freedom Riders directed by Stanley Nelson; La Mission directed by Peter Bratt, and the 2010 Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize Winner, Winter’s Bone, directed by Debra Granik. The five international films chosen to complete the line up of independent films are: Afghan Star directed by Havana Marking; Boy directed by Taika Waititi; Last Train Home directed by Luxin Fan; Son of Babylon by Mohamed Al-Daradji, and Udaan directed by Vikramaditya Motwane.

“This exciting and diverse slate of independent films presents the common humanity we share across all boundaries,” said Keri Putnam, Executive Director, Sundance Institute. “Film Forward deeply reflects Sundance Institute’s core mission by presenting films to new audiences around the world to inspire cross-cultural dialogue.”

“We could not be more excited about this program and these films,” said Rachel Goslins, Executive Director of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the

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‘Winter’s Bone’ Leads Nominations For Gotham Independent Film Awards

Winter’s Bone leads with three nominations – Best Feature, Best Ensemble Performance and Breakthrough Actor. The ceremony will be held on Monday, November 29th, at Cipriani Wall Street. Robert Duvall, Hilary Swank, Darren Aronofsky and Focus Features CEO James Schamus will each be receiving a career tribute.

Best Feature

Black Swan
Darren Aronofsky, director; Mike Medavoy, Arnold W. Messer, Brian Oliver, Scott Franklin, producers (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Blue Valentine
Derek Cianfrance, director; Jamie Patricof, Lynette Howell, Alex Orlovsky, producers (The Weinstein Company)

The Kids Are All Right
Lisa Cholodenko, director;  Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, Celine Rattray, Jordan Horowitz, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Philippe Hellmann, producers (Focus Features)

Let Me In
Matt Reeves, director; Simon Oakes, Alex Brunner, Guy East, Tobin Armbrust,  Donna Gigliotti, John Nording, Carl Molinder, producers (Overture Films)

Winter’s Bone
Debra Granik, director; Anne Rosellini, Alix Madigan-Yorkin, producers (Roadside Attractions) Read More »

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