Our colleague Ray Pride got hit with a particularly lengthy bout of server outage over at this blog at Movie City News. After almost two months, though, he’s back with his typically exhaustive and thought-provoking series of links and postings. Welcome him back by busting his bandwith and clicking above..
Listen closely and you’ll hear cheers echoing the corridors of cyberspace. Entrepreneur Mark Cuban, owner of 2929, HDNet, Magnolia Pictures and the Dallas Mavericks, has announced on his blog that following a request from the Electronic Frontier Foundation he’ll be financing Grokster’s legal bills in MGM vs. Grokster, a case that winds up at the Supreme Court this Tuesday. The case revolves around the question of whether or not file-sharing services and peer-to-peer networks can be sued if their technology allows users to download or trade copywritten content. The entertainment industry is hoping to overturn a 1984 verdict in a […]
Interesting article by Anne Thompson in today’s Hollywood Reporter. Her lead: “You can laugh about it. Fantasize about it. Be punished or killed for it. But what you can’t do is take sex seriously at the movies.” She goes on to examine the box-office fate of a number of sexually provocative serious-minded films and gathers some thoughts by industry types on why eroticism seems to fail in the theatrical marketplace. From producer Peter Guber: “If you spell fun, it sells. Sex inside a comedy candy-coats sex and allows the audience to feel comfortable. Laughter covers up insecurity. Sex sells, but […]
I had no idea that in addition to pictures and profiles of charmingly tattooed and pierced young women who call themselves things like a “full-time artfag film student and part-time superbitch”, the Suicide Girls Web site features regular and rather interesting interviews, many with indie film personalities like Danny Boyle and Campbell Scott. From the current discussion with Chloe Sevigny, who talks about her work with Woody Allen in Melinda and Melinda and Lars von Trier in Dogville and the upcoming Manderlay: “Lars is very personal and he gets in your business and there’s a lot of chit chatting and […]
Jake Brooks provides the first media coverage of the IFP’s Producer’s Group, a gathering of some 50+ Gotham producers gathered last year to discuss the high costs of indie shooting in New York. With IATSE hiking pension and welfare benefits to over $100 per day per IA crew member, a group of producers, spearheaded by Jason Kliot, Joana Vicente, and Gretchen McGowan of Open City and HDNet and including such folks as John Penotti and Tim Williams of GreeneStreet, Ted Hope and Anthony Bregman of This is That, and John Sloss of Cinetic Media, met to discuss ways in which […]
Documentaries about kids triumphing (or sometimes not) within educational endeavors have been big hits recently, from Spellbound to the current festival favorite Mad Hot Ballroom. With its SXSW Special Jury Award, Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady’s doc The Boys of Baraka should deservedly achieve the same level of recognition. Original, visually elegant and with an uncommonly ambitious narrative sweep, The Boys of Baraka was shot over a two-year period and makes a real investment in its subjects, an investment that pays off for the filmmakers. I met Ewing and Grady, who together run the New York production company Loki Films, […]
Andrew Gurland and Huck Botko’s Mail Order Wife, covered in the current issue of Filmmaker, opened this weekend at the Angelika, and its first weekend performance will have a lot to do with how widely this perversely funny and disturbing mock doc plays around the country. We’d tell you all the reasons to see it, but Moriarty at Ain’t It Cool News presents a much more detailed and coherent argument that we’re able to muster this late at night….
Our friend Travis Crawford, who appears often in our pages, drops from view in the late winter and early spring when, as associate director of programming for the Philadelphia Film Festival he puts together his Danger After Dark program. And now, in what has become an annual tradition, he re-emerges with an e-mail in which he sneaks his program to his friends a few days in advance of the official announcement. If you are a devotee of outre genre films — and even if you don’t plan to attend the festival — check out Crawford’s program, below. His wonderfully descriptive […]
It’s a cliche to say that independent films are “critic-driven,” that they rely on good reviews to combat Hollywood-size P&A budgets and succeed in the marketplace. And while Filmmaker doesn’t run reviews per se, it’s true that a kind of “critical sensibility” informs our editorial decisions. At the same time, we do try to cover what’s going on in the independent scene, so that sometimes means that a film we’re not crazy about shows up in our pages. But I, Filmmaker, and most every other member of the so-called critical establishment have missed the boat entirely on a trio of […]
If the Argentinian newspaper The Post can be believed, creators of “airline versions” of R and PG-rated movies have a new word replacement for a common epithet. In what is, if true, an oddly hilarious example of subversive political commentary, the word “asshole” as uttered in Alexander Payne’s Sideways was replaced in actor Thomas Haden Church’s airline dubbing with “Ashcroft.” The paper’s Montel Reel says he heard the word twice in Church’s dialogue while on an Aerolineas Argentinas flight to Lima, Peru. The Arizona Central, which picked up the story, says calls to Fox Searchlight, which distributed the picture, and […]