Friday, July 31, 2015

Ten Bets #6 / Trailers: "Black Mass", "Room", "Beasts of No Nation" / Poland Resets

Well, it's finally Friday and after a really hectic week...


TEN BETS #6




The dual Toronto and Venice announcements have fundamentally altered the newest edition of  "Ten Bets"...my best guess at ten films that I think will make the program for the 42nd edition of the Telluride Film Festival.

Take a look at last week's "Bets"

10) "Black Mass"
9) "Suffragette"
8) "He Named Me Malala"
7) "The Club"
6) "45 Years"
5) "Carol"
4) "Truth"
3) "I Saw the Light"
2) "Son of Saul"
1) "Dheepan"


My #1 "Bet" (Dheepan) is off the table as is "The Club" at #7.  Meanwhile, it seems prudent that I dropped "Youth" just a shade out of the "Ten Bets".  It also seems advisable that we add the films that we think are headed to T-ride based on the information gleaned at the TIFF and Venice announcements on Tuesday and Wednesday:


"Beasts of No Nation"
"Room"
"Anomalisa"
I already had "Son of Saul" and "Black Mass" on the list last week prior to the announcements.  So here's the new version of "Ten Bets":

10 ) "Truth"
9) "I Saw the Light" 
8) "Suffragette"
7) "He Named Me Malala"
6) "Carol"
5) "Anomalisa"
4) "Room"
3) "Beasts of No Nation"
2) "Black Mass"
1) "Son of Saul"

at  #11 "Steve Jobs".

As to "Spotlight"...the rest of the world seems to think it's coming to Telluride...I remain dubious.


TRAILERS:

The last week has seen an avalanche of trailers of films that were named by Toronto, Venice or seem to have aspirations to be announced for fests in the near future.  I pass along three here.  All of which seem set for Telluride.

BLACK MASS

Thursday a new trailer for the Scott Cooper film starring Johnny Depp was made available online. Here it is via YouTube:



And coverage of the release here:








ROOM

After Tuesday's TIFF announcement a slew of stories, pics and this trailer appeared for Lenny Abrahamson's "Room" starring Brie Larson.  The film appears to be headed to the San Juans for Labor Day.  Here's the "Room" trailer via YouTube:





There's a poster as well:



  And, as above, here are a number of stories that came withe the release of the trailer and poster:









BEASTS OF NO NATION


Trailer here:


"Beasts of No Nation" trailer via YouTube


And here are the requisite posts:





And here's an additional new trailer from a film that isn't on anyone's fest list yet:  "The 33" based on the true life incident of 33 Chilean miners trapped deep under the earth and the efforts to free them.  Antonio Banderas stars:



"The 33" Trailer via YouTube


Stories for "The 33" are included here from The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, The Playlist and Rope of Silicon:








POLAND RESETS THE FIELD




David Poland at Movie City News has absorbed all of the news from this week and has re-set his view of the Oscar positioning of films thus far with an interesting list of films and where they're set to premiere.  Oddly, he has "Steve Jobs" listed as a premiere for New York.  I haven't seen/heard that anywhere.  Hope he's incorrect.  

Poland also, like many others this week, thinks "Spotlight" will be at Telluride.

Here's the story:


And that's all for Friday and for a very exciting week.  Have a great weekend and look for more on Monday...


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Thursday, July 30, 2015

As the Venice and Toronto Dust Settles / Venice Chief Confirms "Black Mass" / "Spotlight" Trailer in the Spotlight

It's Thursday my friends...


AS THE VENICE/TORONTO DUST SETTLES













Kind of catching my breath a little.  It has been a terrifically hectic week for MTFB what with the first slate of films announced on Tuesday for the Toronto International Film Festival and the full slate for the Venice Fest on Wednesday.  I'm am in no way complaining.  It has been very interesting this week as I have probably had more interaction with journos this week than at any other time since I started writing this thing back in 2008.  Very interesting and kind of a hoot.

Anyway, some observations or re-observations from what has transpired:


#1) Again, the reining wisdom is that, extrapolating from the Toronto set of films, it seems like a good bet that "Black Mass", "Beasts of No Nation", "Room", "Son of Saul" and "Anomalisa" are headed to Telluride.

#2) "Dheepan" and "Youth" are not.

#3) Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight" is not in my opinion, but there are a lot of people who think it is, it seems, to a lot of confusion about its announced premiere status by TIFF.  I have been told that "Spotlight" was billed as a "Canadian" premiere via TIFF's Twitter account announcing its inclusion in the TIFF program.  Further, there was a good deal of discussion Tuesday as to what and "International" premiere really means.

Nevertheless, Variety's Scott Foundas and Justin Chang said "Spotlight" was likely Telluride-bound on Tuesday:

http://variety.com/2015/film/news/toronto-festival-slate-brings-fall-landscape-into-focus-1201549753/

 and Anne Thompson said it in her Venice post on Wednesday:

http://blogs.indiewire.com/thompsononhollywood/the-danish-girl-and-a-bigger-splash-join-everest-and-black-mass-at-venice-film-festival-20150729

and Jeffrey Wells on Wednesday afternoon:

http://www.hollywood-elsewhere.com/2015/07/story-want-us-write/

Steve Zeitchik at the L.A. Times:

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/moviesnow/la-et-mn-venice-venice-film-festival-fukunaga-mccarthy-lineup-20150729-story.html

These are really, really key people in film reportage...so maybe I'm off my game here.  And, believe me, no one would be happier to be wrong.  I'd love for "Spotlight" to make the trip to Telluride.  My belief is that it won't and that Toronto's designation for it as an "International" premiere means to tell us that it plays Venice (as it will) and then goes directly to Toronto.

#4)  Venice's announcement yesterday including "A Bigger Splash" in its lineup which makes me wonder if it might actually show up at Telluride.  I thought that the Fox Searchlight people would bring "Youth" and "He Named Me Malala" to T-ride but in the last couple of weeks I had been hearing small buzzings that "Youth" maybe not so much.  That turned out to be the case as revealed by its North American premiere status for TIFF.

Now, however, comes a vote of confidence for " A Bigger Splash" with its presence in the Venice competition lineup.  So maybe Fox Search loads it up for the dash across the Atlantic and half of America.  We're already betting that is going to happen with "Black Mass", "Beasts of No Nation", and "Anomalisa" (and, if you believe it, "Spotlight" too).  We'll see.

#5) How about no Weinstein Company film named in either set of announcements?  No "Carol" no "Macbeth" no "Burnt" (formerly "Adam Jones"), no "Three Generations" (which is now listed by IMDb as "About Ray").  And, of course, no "Hateful Eight".

Keep in mind, some of those titles will be included in later TIFF announcements, but still...

I'm still of a mind that "Carol" makes it to Telluride and maybe "Macbeth".  I wouldn't be completely stunned by "Burnt" and/or "About Ray" and I also wouldn't be surprised if "Hateful" has some kind of presence at TFF.

#6) So many films unclaimed by both Toronto and Venice:

"Suffragette"
"Our Little Sister"
"I Saw the Light"
"Our Brand is Crisis"
"In the Heart of the Sea"
"By the Sea"
"Truth"
"Steve Jobs"
"Manchester-by-the-Sea"
"Secret in Their Eyes"
"Bridge of Spies"
"Queen of the Desert"
"Salt and Fire"
"45 Years"
"13 Minutes"
"Carol"
"Macbeth"
"Adam Jones/Burnt"
"Snowden"
"Joy"
"The Light Between Oceans"
"Crimson Peak"
"The 33"
"The Last Face"


From this list probably six/seven films have the best chance of making the Telluride lineup. Cannes' film "Carol".  Danny Boyle's "Steve Jobs" (many believe it's headed to T-ride), Sony Pictures Classics: "Truth", "I Saw the Light".  Sarah Gavron's "Suffragette" and Werner Herzog's "Queen of the Desert" and/or "Salt and Fire".

The next tier of "maybes" includes Berlin Fest films: "45 Years" and "13 Minutes".  Another Cannes film from SPC; "Our Little Sister" as wells as David Gordon Green's "Our Brand is Crisis" and  Justin Kurzel's "Macbeth".

The rest of the field isn't as likely, but never say never.

Check tomorrow's post for the sixth edition of 2015's Telluride "Ten Bets".  It will seem a little different than last week's.


VENICE CHIEF CONFIRMS "BLACK MASS"


"Black Mass" trailer via YouTube


After the Toronto announcement, we were pretty sure about what follows.  I have been saying that I had been sensing it for a few days and in a general sense saying that Warners was probably going to be back at Telluride for months.

Now, in a Deadline.com interview, Venice Film Fest Head Alberto Barbera has confirmed that Scott Cooper's "Black Mass" will be playing Telluride:

"Black Mass will premiere in Venice on Friday and the following day the cast will fly to Telluride to be the Saturday night gala."

Now, I don't know how accurate Alberto is but you have to wonder what "cast" means.  Depp? Cumberbatch?  Edgerton?

Bring 'em all, I say.

Barbera also semi-implies the "Beasts of No Nation" move to T-ride too with its placement on the yet-to-be-officially-announced Venice schedule and he also seems to suggest that Guillermo Del Toro's "Crimson Peak" won't be playing any festival.

Look at the complete interview here from reporter Nancy Tartaglione:


http://deadline.com/2015/07/venice-film-festival-alberto-barbera-lineup-world-premieres-crimson-peak-1201486899/

P.S.  I believe a new "Black Mass" trailer is supposed to drop today.  Loom for it here tomorrow if that happens.



"SPOTLIGHT" TRAILER IN THE SPOTLIGHT

Despite the fact that I am saying that it won't play Telluride, I am cognizant that there are many that think it could/will, so, doing the due diligence, Here's the trailer that dropped yesterday for the drama:




"Spotlight" Trailer via YouTube

I have also included a number of the posts that accompanied the trailer release from yesterday:







More news coming tomorrow as well as that brand new shiny and completely re-vamped "Ten Bets".

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Venice Announces / Toronto Musings / Linklater Will Be Later / Foundas on the Future

Welcome to Wednesday...



VENICE ANNOUNCES



The Venice International Film Festival announced its lineup this morning at 11am Venetian time...about 5 AM EDT.  I wasn't awake for it but here's what we discovered:

Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight" (more below) will play Venice.

Suspected Telluride titles "Beasts of No Nation" and "Anomalisa" will also premiere in Venice.

Other Venice titles that could also make the hop between Venice and Telluride are:

"A Bigger Splash"
"Heart of a Dog"
"In Jackson Heights" and
"DePalma"

Of course, others may make the list.

Additionally, remember that "Black Mass" will play out of competition and then come to Telluride (we think).  "Spotlight" is also playing out of competition.


The following links include the complete announced lineup:









TORONTO MUSINGS:



Here's what I posted yesterday in the immediate aftermath of the Toronto Fests first announcement of films:


All Galas except Brain Hegeland's "Legend" and Atom Egoyan's "Remember" are listed as World Premieres.  "Legend" is listed as an International Premiere but opens in Britain the day before TIFF starts, so it's not a Telluride player. "Remember" is listed as a North American Premiere which takes it off the table for Telluride.

World Premiere Galas (and the opening night film) of note that are removed from Telluride consideration are:

"Demolition"
"The Dressmaker"
"Freeheld"
"The Martian"
"The Program"
"Stonewall"

Among Special Presentations:

Those that are listed as Canadian Premieres and thereby likely Telluride material are:

Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson's "Anomalisa"
Scott Cooper's "Black Mass"
Lenny Abrahamson's "Room"
Laszlo Nemes' "Son of Saul"


Cary Fukunaga's  "Beasts of No Nation" is also a "Canadian" premiere.  Does this mean it could be a Telluride program?

Surprisingly, Jacques Audiard's "Dheepan" is a North American Premiere, meaning that it won't play at Telluride.  Also off the table for Telluride among TIFF Special Presentations announced this morning are: "Trumbo", "The Club", "The Danish Girl", "The Lobster", "Mountains May Depart", "Sicario" and "Youth" which also surprised me (though I had been cooling on its chances for the last couple of weeks).

Among International Premieres in the Special Presentations category are Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight" and Johnny To's "Office".  That would seem to indicate at least a chance that they play Telluride but I Suspect a Venice play is more likely and then both go directly to TIFF.

And then there are a slew of films that were not announced:

"Suffragette"
"Our Little Sister"
"I Saw the Light"
"Our Brand is Crisis"
"In the Heart of the Sea"
"By the Sea"
"Truth"
"Steve Jobs"
"Manchester-by-the-Sea"
"Secret in Their Eyes"
"Bridge of Spies"
"Queen of the Desert"
"Salt and Fire"
"45 Years"
"13 Minutes"
"Carol"
"Macbeth"
"Adam Jones/Burnt"
"Snowden"
"Joy"
"The Light Between Oceans"
"Crimson Peak"

Today add the following:

My strong belief that Jacques Audiard's "Dheepan" would be playing Telluride is utterly debunked by its TIFF appearance as a North American Premiere.  It's a film that I've had at the #1 or #2 spot on all five of this summer's "Ten Bets" lists.  Color me embarassed.  Similarly, "Youth", which I had been counting on (though a bit cooler on its prospects the last week or two) also will apparently skip The SHOW.  Also shot down this morning, Pablo Larrain's "The Club".

Two "Ten Bets" films that appear to be confirmed: "Black Mass" and "Son of Saul".  "Ten Bets" films on which the jury is still out: "Carol", "Truth", "I Saw the Light", "Suffragette", "45 Years", and "He Named Me Malala".  

Other intriguing turns:  It looks like we may well see Cary Fukunaga's "Beasts of No Nation" as well as Lenny Abrahamson's "Room" and that the possibility of a Danny Boyle return to Telluride with "Steve Jobs" still exists.  And imagine this Charlie Kaufman in Elks Park (Anomalisa)  Looks like that could happen as well.

Then there's the mysterious case of Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight".  It appears that it showed up in some TIFF announcement materials as a Canadian premiere for a bit but is and always was to be listed as an International premiere.  "Wild" was listed the same way last year as it first screened in Telluride before going north to Canada.  I spent a lot of time with a lot of people in the Twitterverse yesterday trying to nail down what "International Premiere" means.  The general consensus was that it references a film's first play outside its nation of origin.  For both "Spotlight" and "Wild" that is/was the U.S.

Both of those factors have had a lot of people speculating that it means that "Spotlight" will be at Telluride.

With the announcement this morning that it plays at Venice (as we suspected from that Italian Vanity Fair article in which Mark Ruffalo reportedly let that cat out of the bag), I believe that it will skip Telluride and move on to Toronto.


Obviously, this week's edition of "Ten Bets" is going to look different.

I have linked some of the coverage of the TIFF announcement here:









LINKLATER WILL BE LATER



Also news late yesterday that Richard Linklater's follow-up to "Boyhood" that has been described as the "spiritual sequel" to "Dazed and Confused" has been pushed to an April 2016 release date.  "Everybody Wants Some" had received some fall fest speculation including Telluride, but this means that's off the table.  Perhaps it shows up at Berlin or Sundance now.

Here's Anne Thompson's story about the move:



FOUNDAS ON THE FUTURE



I reported/reposted last Friday that Variety chief critic (and sometime "Professional film rater" for this Blog for Telluride) Scott Foundas was leaving the venerable publication to join Amazon Films as an acquisitions exec.

Foundas will be working with longtime Indy film guy Bob Berney at Amazon.  Between those two, I think we can expect to see some Amazon product at future Telluride Film Fests.  It'll be really interesting to see what Amazon goes after over the next few months and then factor them into next year's T-ride equation.

Foundas talked to Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood in a post that went up yesterday about his move:

http://blogs.indiewire.com/thompsononhollywood/scott-foundas-explains-why-hes-leaving-film-criticism-again-for-amazon-20150724

More tomorrow...



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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

News and Analysis from Toronto's Announcement




The Toronto International Film Festival announced their first wave of films this morning with Galas and Special Presentations.

All Galas except Brain Hegeland's "Legend" and Atom Egoyan's "Remember" are listed as World Premieres.  "Legend" is listed as an International Premiere but opens in Britain the day before TIFF starts, so it's not a Telluride player. "Remember" is listed as a North American Premiere which takes it off the table for Telluride.

World Premiere Galas (and the opening night film) of note that are removed from Telluride consideration are:

"Demolition"
"The Dressmaker"
"Freeheld"
"The Martian"
"The Program"
"Stonewall"

Among Special Presentations:

Those that are listed as Canadian Premieres and thereby likely Telluride material are:

Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson's "Anomalisa"
Scott Cooper's "Black Mass"
Lenny Abrahamson's "Room"
Laszlo Nemes' "Son of Saul"


Cary Fukunaga's  "Beasts of No Nation" is also a "Canadian" premiere.  Does this mean it could be a Telluride program?

Surprisingly, Jacques Audiard's "Dheepan" is a North American Premiere, meaning that it won't play at Telluride.  Also off the table for Telluride among TIFF Special Presentations announced this morning are: "Trumbo", "The Club", "The Danish Girl", "The Lobster", "Mountains May Depart", "Sicario" and "Youth" which also surprised me (though I had been cooling on its chances for the last couple of weeks).

Among International Premieres in the Special Presentations category are Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight" and Johnny To's "Office".  That would seem to indicate at least a chance that they play Telluride but I Suspect a Venice play is more likely and then both go directly to TIFF.

And then there are a slew of films that were not announced:

"Suffragette"
"Our Little Sister"
"I Saw the Light"
"Our Brand is Crisis"
"In the Heart of the Sea"
"By the Sea"
"Truth"
"Steve Jobs"
"Manchester-by-the-Sea"
"Secret in Their Eyes"
"Bridge of Spies"
"Queen of the Desert"
"Salt and Fire"
"45 Years"
"13 Minutes"
"Carol"
"Macbeth"
"Adam Jones/Burnt"
"Snowden"

There's a lot to chew on here and remember that Toronto has a ton more selections to announce over the next few weeks.  More coming in tomorrow's post.


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"Steve Jobs" in the Center/"Maryland" (Disorder) Trailer and Poster/"Truth About "Truth"/"Hollywood Elsewhere Thinks "Our Brand" Could Head to T-ride

Good Tuesday Everyone...

Here's the first post for the blog today bit another is coming later after the morning announcement from the Toronto International Film Festival...so keep checking back today to see what the TIFF2015 announcement tells us about Telluride.  Last year we were able to nail down seven T-ride films from the first Toronto announcement.  Also, a reminder, Venice announces their lineup tomorrow.

"STEVE JOBS" IN THE CENTER




The New York Film Fest announced late yesterday afternoon that Danny Boyle's "Steve Jobs" starring Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet will be its centerpiece gala on Oct. 3.  The film is set for an Oct. 9th U.S. release.

Does that take it off the table for Telluride?  Probably but maybe not yet.  The story from the NY Times Arts Beat blog omits that "premiere" status of the film.  Is this an oversight?  Is it intentional so as to be tricky?  If it doesn't world premiere in New York that leaves the door open.  Perhaps we'll find out more later today or with Venice's announcement tomorrow.

Last year's NYFF centerpiece was "Inherent Vice".  In 2013 it was "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty". in 2012 it was "Not Fade Away" and in 2011 it was "My Week with Marilyn".

Here's coverage:






http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/boyles-steve-jobs-heading-to-new-york-film-festival-but-is-a-toronto-premiere-in-the-offing/

In Jeffrey Wells Hollywood Elsewhere piece, he talks about the possibility that "STeve Jobs" makes the trip to Telluride and also that "Trumbo" will NOT:

http://www.hollywood-elsewhere.com/2015/07/one-telluride-heartbreaker-possibly-two/

And this last night from Britain's The Guardian reporting "sources" that claim the film will bypass Toronto and Venice:

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2015/jul/27/danny-boyle-steve-jobs-new-york-film-fest


"MARYLAND" (DISORDER) TRAILER AND POSTER



I have mentioned this film a couple of times as a distant Telluride possibility by its original title "Disorder" (June 9 and July 17 MTFB posts).  The arrival yesterday of a trailer and poster seems to indicate that we'll probably see it named for Toronto and/or Venice and possibly still be in play for Telluride.

Here's the trailer via YouTube:



The trailer looks intriguing and the pairing of Matthias Schoenaerts and Diane Kruger is also whets the appetite.  The film is directed by Alice Winocour and is distributed by Sundance Selects.

Reports linked here from FirstShowing, The FilmStage and The Playlist:





THE TRUTH ABOUT "TRUTH"



I am increasingly confident about "Truth" making the Telluride lineup.  The true life film based on the decline and fall of Dan Rather at CBS News is from SPC and seems like a ht T-ride prospect.  We learned yesterday that the film has been dated for an October 16th release date which comports well with a possible festival run which could include Telluride, Toronto, Venice and New York.


HOLLYWOOD ELSEWHERE THINKS "OUR BRAND" COULD HEAD TO T-RIDE



Jeffrey Wells at Hollywood Elsewhere echoes much the same train of thought that I did in yesterday's blog post that the David Gordon Green film "Our Brand is Crisis" could make an appearance on the T-ride 2015 program.

Wells lays out his case for it making a fall fest appearance as well as runs down a history of the film's development here:



THAT'S ALL FOR NOW.  MORE COMING IN A FEW AFTER THE TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL MAKES ITS FIRST SET OF ANNOUNCEMENTS.


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Monday, July 27, 2015

"Black Mass" to Venice/"Our Brand" Gets a Release Date/The "Unified Clooney Theory"/This Would Be a Shocker

Good Monday morning campers.  I hope you enjoyed a stress free weekend.



"BLACK MASS" TO VENICE


"Black Mass" trailer via YouTube


The Venice Film Festival announced Friday that Scott Cooper's "Black Mass" will world premiere out of competition as a part of their lineup on Sept. 4.

You probably noticed that I listed "Black Mass" in Friday's MTFB post at #10 and for the first time this summer.  I also mentioned in this space last week that I was seeing a good deal of smoke about the chances that it would play Telluride and in light of the Hollywood Elsewhere story above, the #10 spot seems conservative.

 Finally, I have been suggesting for months now that I thought that Warners would be back at Telluride this year after laying out last year.  Their success with "Argo" in 2012 and "Gravity" in 2013.  In addition to "Black Mass", Warners also has "Our Brand is Crisis" and "In the Heart of the Sea" and "Midnight Special" as potential material for Telluride.

The Telluride/Venice overlap is usually fairly smallish.  In most years, the overlap is around three films.  But...

The dating of the "Black Mass' premiere for Sept. 4th works for a Venice play followed by a Telluride screening half way through.  "Gravity" followed that path in 2013.



A couple of questions remain.  First, does Johnny Depp make the trip from Venice to Telluride and second, do any of the supporting players also come along?  Like Benedict Cumberbatch?  You may recall that in 2013 a mass of the "12 Years a Slave" crew made the journey: McQueen, Pitt, Fassbender, N'yongo, Ejiofor...so maybe the whole gang.

Here is a sampling of the coverage from the media about the Venice "Black Mass" announcement:

http://variety.com/2015/film/festivals/johnny-depp-starrer-black-mass-to-world-preem-at-venice-film-festival-1201547904/

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/venice-black-mass-world-premiere-810884

http://www.ew.com/article/2015/07/24/black-mass-venice-film-festival

http://www.indiewire.com/article/johnny-depp-heading-to-venice-film-festival-for-black-mass-world-premiere

http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/johnny-depps-black-mass-will-officially-play-the-venice-film-festival-out-of-competition-20150724





"OUR BRAND" LANDS WITH A FALL DATE



Another tidbit of interest that was announced this weekend was the dating of release for David Gordon Green's "Our Brand is Crisis" for Oct. 30th.  That puts the film in prime position to be a part of any number of fall film fests including Telluride.  As mentioned above, "Our Brand" is being distributed by Warners which could bring it to T-ride along with "Black Mass" as they did with "Prisoners' and "Gravity in 2013.

"Our Brand" stars Sandra Bullock, Billy Bob Thornton and Zoe Kazan and is based on the 2005 documentary of the same name which explored the extension of American style political campaigning in South America.

The film also shows up below in my look at "The Unified Clooney Theory" of Telluride possibilities.

The stories from Variety and The Hollywood Reporter:


http://variety.com/2015/film/news/sandra-bullock-our-brand-is-crisis-set-for-oct-30-1201548567/

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/sandra-bullocks-crisis-gets-october-811106



THE UNIFIED CLOONEY THEORY


George Clooney on the set of the Coen Brothers' "Hail Caesar"



It's time once again to re-visit my annual proposal of the "Unified Clooney Theory".  The UCT suggests that Telluride clues can be found by examining the work of George Clooney and his friends and associates.  Last year the UCT was abysmal at suggesting possibilities, but remember that 2013 when the UCT was actually fairly prophetic: "12 Years a Slave" and "Gravity".  So...it's a "so-so" tool at best but kind of fun...

So, start with Clooney himself.  Acting wise, he's involved with a couple of films that might be Telluride worthy: "Money Monster" directed by Jodie Foster that almost certainly is unready (IMDb says it is till filming and isn't "expected until Mar. 31) and "Hail, Caesar" the Coen Brothers (also members of The UCT) film that is set for Feb. 5, 2016 release.

I'd really love "Caesar" to be surprise at T-ride...but it's not likely.

Much more likely is a film that Clooney is a producer on which David Gordon Green's "Our Brand is Crisis"  The film stars (and is also being produced by) Sandra Bullock.  The film is distributed by Warners and I actually think there's a real shot for it to play on Labor Day weekend.

Next up in The UCT is Clooney pal and sometimes co-star Brad Pitt.  Pitt and his wife Angelina Jolie have a much anticipated film that they have done together and was directed by Jolie.  "By the Sea" is at Universal and is set for a Nov. 13th release.  Honestly, I think the film is more likely as a New York Film Fest possibility rather than Telluride...but you never know.

The third member of The UCT to mention is Matt Damon.  Unlike Clooney and Pitt, Damon has not made it to Telluride.  His big acting gig for this year is the upcoming "The Martian" from director Ridley Scott.  "The Martian" is distributed by 20th Century Fox and is scheduled for release on Oct. 2.  One could make the case that it could SHOW with a big splash as "Gravity" did a couple of years ago but I'd be very, very surprised.

Damon, like Clooney, might be more likely to be Telluride involved through hos producing as he is a producer for Kenneth Lonergan's "Manchester-by -the-Sea" which, although I don't think its T-ride chances are great, has a greater chance to make the lineup than "The Martian" does.

Then there's Damon's longtime friend and occasional collaborator Ben Affleck who is all about being Batman now in the upcoming "Batman vs. Superman" flick.  Affleck is also starring in "The Accountant" from Warners which has late January release date.  Warners could conceivably include it at T-ride with the roll out of "Black Mass".

Known Clooney accomplice Julia Roberts could show at The SHOW with "Secret in Their Eyes".

Cate Blanchett, another Clooney crony, has both "Truth" (which appears to be set for Telluride-see above) and "Carol" (which may not be as solid for Telluride as I have been thinking-also see above).

Of course, Clooney pal Don Cheadle is off the T-ride chart with his Miles Davis biopic that has been announced as the world premiere closing night film for the New York Film Fest.

Then there's Tilda Swinton who received a tribute at Telluride the same year as Clooney and has been in a number of films with Clooney and/or other UCT members: "Michael Clayton", "Hail, Caesar", "Burn After Reading", "Benjamin Button".  She's in "A Bigger Splash" which could be in the TFF #42 lineup.

Best UCT Telluride chances this year are:

1) "Truth" (Blanchett)
2) "Carol" (also Blanchett)
3) "Our Brand is Crisis" (Clooney)
4) "Manchester-by-the-Sea (Damon)
5) "Secret in Their Eyes" (Roberts)


THIS WOULD BE A SHOCKER



Roger Freidman's ShowBiz411 posted this tasty rumor/tidbit over the weekend: the Warren Beatty Howard Hughes project could show up at one of the three upcoming festivals...including Telluride.

The story seems unlikely, but I guess it's possible.  Freidman cites a "source close to the production" who also is reported to have claimed that if it were to show at Venice, Toronto or Telluride that it might well be a "surprise" screening.

That would be a stunning coup for any of the fests as the project is shrouded in mystery.

Here's the IMDb page for the untitled film:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1974420/?ref_=ttrel_rel_tt

and the link to the Freidman post:

http://www.showbiz411.com/2015/07/24/warren-beattys-howard-hughes-movie-may-surface-at-fall-film-festival



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Friday, July 24, 2015

Ten Bets #5/More News of "The Revenant" from THR/"Miles Ahead" Will Be at the End/"Son of Saul" and "Freeheld" Have Trailers

Hello to All on a Friday!



TEN BETS #5



For the fifth time this summer and the last time prior to the beginning of announcements from the Toronto International Film Festival on Tuesday (and the likelihood that their announcement gives solid clues about what could be playing Telluride), here are your latest, best "Ten Bets' for TFF #42 starting with a refresher of the "Ten Bets" from last week:

10) "The Club"
9) "Truth"
8) "Queen of the Desert"
7) "Suffragette"
6) "Youth"
5) "45 Years"
4) "I Saw the Light"
3) "Carol"
2) "Dheepan"
1) "Son of Saul"

Now, taking into consideration the Jeff Wells piece from last week as well as this week's Guardian piece and the comment traffic here on MTFB and this week's review of "The Usual Suspects" here's the latest incarnation of my "Ten Bets" list:


10) "Black Mass"
9) "Suffragette"
8) "He Named Me Malala"
7) "The Club"
6) "45 Years"
5) "Carol"
4) "Truth"
3) "I Saw the Light"
2) "Son of Saul"
1) "Dheepan"


COUSINS ON "BELFAST" AND OTHER TOPICS


Mark Cousins and Helena Bereen of "I Am Belfast"


Earlier this week, as a part of the first wave of "The Usual Suspects" I wrote about director Mark Cousins and his latest documentary "I Am Belfast".  Coincidentally, Britains' Fred: The Festival Insider posted a podcast interview with the film maker about that film and his "Hibrow Trilogy" that has just played as a part of the Karlovy Vary Film Festival.  Check the 11+ minute podcast here:

http://www.fred.fm/uk/mark-cousins-i-am-belfast-the-mark-cousins-hibrow-trilogy-kviff2015/


MORE NEWS OF "THE REVENANT" FROM THR



Following the very insightful Grantland piece about the making and finishing of Alejandro Inarritu's "The Revenant" comes another, separate long piece from Kim Masters of The Hollywood Reporter:


http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/how-leonardo-dicaprios-revenant-shoot-810290

Still (sigh), this reminder that the film won't be ready in time for a Labor Day screening.


"MILES AHEAD" WILL BE AT THE END



Meaning that we found out Wednesday that Don Cheadle's Miles Davis biopic/passion project will close the New York Film Festival and they are labeling it a world premiere.  That designation, assuming that everyone is following the protocol from last year, means that the film is definitely off the Telluride radar.

In reality, I haven't had it on my radar in any significant fashion as it is still looking for U.S> distribution.

The film would have earned a mention on Monday's post when I will be addressing this year's version of "The Unified Clooney Theory" ahead of Tuesday's first announcement of films from the Toronto International Film Festival.

New York has already also announced that it will open with Robert Zemeckis' "The Walk".

Here's a bit of coverage on the NYFF announcement from Wednesday:

http://www.filmlinc.com/daily/entry/don-cheadles-miles-ahead-to-make-its-world-premiere-on-the-closing-night-of

http://www.awardscircuit.com/2015/07/22/don-cheadles-miles-ahead-selected-as-the-closing-film-for-new-york-film-festival/



"SON OF SAUL" AND "FREEHELD"  HAVE TRAILERS

Yesterday, we saw the release of an international trailer for Cannes sensation "Son of Saul".  I have that film sitting at the #2 spot on today's latest "Ten Bets" list.  We also saw the release of this first trailer for the Julianne Moore social drama "Freeheld".  Here they are via YouTube:


"Freeheld"

Here are three stories to accompany the "Freeheld" trailer:







"Son of Saul"


And a couple of stories that came with the "Son of Saul" trailer release:


http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/first-trailer-for-cannes-winner-and-oscar-contender-son-of-saul/

http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/watch-operatic-first-international-trailer-for-cannes-winner-son-of-saul-20150723


LATEBREAKING



An interesting tidbit from the Italian online edition of Vanity Fair that claims that Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight", the drama concerning the revelation of  wrong doing and cover up in the Boston Archdiocese of the Catholic Church, will play as a part of the Venice Film Fest.  If accurate, that would be a bit of a surprise as it has been heavily rumored as a likely opener for Toronto.  A Venice play also opens the door a tiny bit to a Telluride play.

Google translate the story that is linked here:


http://www.vanityfair.it/show/cinema/15/07/19/mark-ruffalo-al-giffoni-film-festival-2015-intervista-e-foto

That's all for Friday.  Expect more Monday though special reports could pop up this weekend depending on the information that shakes out in the run up to Toronto's first announcement of films on Tuesday.

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