December 2015 - Posts

Meet the Brave Projectionists Behind 'The Hateful Eight' 70mm Roadshow

READ MORE: What It's Like to Be a 'Hateful Eight' 70mm Projectionist (With Quentin Tarantino Watching) Before delving into the Sisyphean task of putting together the 100 theater roadshow and some of the problems with individual 70mm screenings you’ve been reading about, it’s important to first remember that while the ability to shoot on film might have recently come back from near death, the battle between digital and film projection has been over for awhile now. Even at the prestigious, filmmaker-friendly New York Film Festival -- whose state of the art facilities are the rare venues still capable of screening 35mm -- movies that were shot on celluloid, like "Carol," "Bridge of Spies" and "Listen Up Philip," have screened digitally (DCP).  Recently, only "Inherent Vice" screened there in 35mm and that was big deal.   So the idea of a three-hour 70mm film, shot in Ultra Panavision -- a format for which hasn’t been used since 1964 and...
Posted by Indiewire

'Endo What?' Illuminates the Lives of Those Living with an Underdiscussed Disease

[Editors Note: Project of the Day is presented in partnership with Blackmagic Design, one of the world's leading innovators and manufacturers of creative video technology.] Here's your daily dose of an indie film, web series, TV pilot, what-have-you in progress -- at the end of the week, you'll have the chance to vote for your favorite. In the meantime: Is this a project you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments. Endo What? Logline: A film about endometriosis, the most common, devastating disease that most people have never heard of. Elevator Pitch:  "Endo What" explores one of the world's most misunderstood diseases: endometriosis. It affects 1 in 10 women or 176 million worldwide, yet most people have never heard of it. Patients see an average of 8 doctors for 10 years before being diagnosed. In that time, many are forced to abandon dreams of having children, to leave careers they love, to watch personal relationships suffer & to live in...
Posted by Indiewire

James Franco's Movie Column: The Best Movies of 2015

READ MORE: James Franco's Other Movies Columns in 2015 This is a column where James Franco talks to his reverse self, Semaj, about new films. Rather than a conventional review, it is a place where James and Semaj can muse about ideas that the films provoke. James loves going to the movies and talking about them, but a one-sided take on a movie, in print, might be misconstrued as a review. As someone in the industry it could be detrimental to James's career if he were to review his peers, because unlike the book industry — where writers review other writer's books — the film industry is highly collaborative, and a bad review of a peer could create problems. So, assume that James (and Semaj) love all these films. What they're interested in talking about is all the ways the films inspire them, and make them think. James is me, and Semaj is the other side of me. —James Franco James: What were your favorites this year? Semaj: I think this was a year for indies for me. James: Yeah,...
Posted by Indiewire

What It's Like to Be a 'Hateful Eight' 70mm Projectionist (With Quentin Tarantino Watching)

Editor’s Note: Adam Witmer is a 22-year-old senior at UNC School of the Arts in Winston Salem, North Carolina, where he works in film preservation and as a projectionist at one of the largest film archives in the country. At this very moment he is the projectionist at the AMC Burbank 16 in Los Angeles for Quentin Tarantino’s 70mm Roadshow of "The Hateful Eight." READ MORE: Here are the Most Brutal Reactions to 'The Hateful Eight' 70mm Roadshow When I first heard about the plans for "The Hateful Eight" 70mm screenings, I quickly contacted Boston Light and Sound about being a projectionist for Quentin Tarantino’s Roadshow. I had a strong sense this would be something historic and I desperately wanted to be part of it. I emailed and called BL&S every other day trying to get my foot in the door, but was told over and over again to be patient and remain flexible while they worked out the scheduling. Finally, at 1am on Christmas Eve, I received an email saying...
Posted by Indiewire

The 2015 Indiewire Springboard Bible

Indiewire's Springboard column profiles up-and-comers in the film industry worthy of your attention. Springboard: Lola Kirke on 'Mozart in the Jungle' and Noah Baumbach's Secret Project Springboard: Meet the Man Behind Sundance's Most Terrifying Film, 'The Witch' Springboard: 'The Bronze's' Melissa Rauch Wants to Make Movies Where Women Don't Have to Apologize Springboard: Meet the Breakout Star of the Sundance Hit, 'Diary of a Teenage Girl' Springboard: Jeremy Jordan Sings His Way to Stardom in 'The Last Five Years' SXSW Springboard: The Promising Newcomer Behind Gay Muslim Drama 'Naz and Maalik' SXSW Springboard: Eugene Kotlyarenko Lets It All Hang Out in 'A Wonderful Cloud' Springboard: Anja Marquardt Breaks Boundaries With Sex Surrogate Drama 'She's Lost Control' Springboard: 'Dior and I' Director Frédéric Tcheng Hates the Term 'Fashion Documentary' Springboard: What It's Like to Open the Cannes Film Festival As a First-Time Actor Springboard: Meet the...
Posted by Indiewire

Watch: 'The Walking Dead' Season 6 Midseason Trailer Teases The Return Of Loved Ones

READ MORE: THE 15 Biggest *** Moves of the Year, or What Enraged TV Fans in 2015 Just a day after "The Walking Dead" was crowned the top series of 2015 by the Nielsens annual report, a new trailer has dropped touting the return of the "No. 1 series" on TV.  There's not a whole lot of new information to be gleaned from the 30-second spot, but an ominous voiceover teases the reappearance — or haunting remembrance — of the "people you love." Whether that was meant to remind fans of Glenn's infamous brush with death or not isn't the most important aspect of the statement, but fans undoubtedly expect more of the same juicy, emotional twists in the latter half of Season 6.  "The Walking Dead" returns to AMC just in time for Valentine's Day, February 14. READ MORE: The Most Shocking TV Moments of 2015, Ranked
Posted by Indiewire

The 17 Best Films of 2016 We've Already Seen

READ MORE: Indiewire's Top Stories of 2015 With 2015 very nearly over and done, it's time to look forward to all the offerings the cinema of 2016 will provide for movie-goers hungry for something new. Luckily, we've already caught a fair bit of "new" films on the 2015 festival circuit and beyond, and here are the best ones. Of note: This list only includes films we have already seen that have a set 2016 release date (or a new appearance on the festival circuit). If you're looking for more bonafide favorites that have yet to snag an official release date, check out our annual Critics Poll, especially the Most Anticipated list and the Best Undistributed Film list, or head on over to our dedicated review page to read up on some great films we've seen already that might still be looking for homes. "Sweaty Betty," opening January 8Our Eric Kohn wrote at SXSW: "Improvised around a mixture of real and imagined circumstances, 'Sweaty Betty'...
Posted by Indiewire

Spike Lee's 'Chi-Raq' Hitting Amazon Prime This February

READ MORE: Spike Lee, Al Sharpton and New Yorkers Protest Gun Violence at Socially-Charged 'Chi-Raq' Premiere Prime has become a promising new streaming platform for original television thanks to "Transparent," "The Man in the High Castle" and "Mozart in the Jungle," but it's about to pull a Netflix with "Chi-Raq" and make an original feature film available for online viewing.  "Chi-Raq" was the first feature film produced by Amazon Studios under the guidance of Ted Hope, but instead of releasing the film day-and-date online and in theaters (something Netflix tried and received backlash for among theater exhibitors), they opted for a limited theatrical release followed by a quick turnaround for streaming. The movie opened in theaters December 4 and will debut on Amazon Prime on February 4. "Chi-Raq" can currently be streamed on VOD and Digital HD. Co-written with Kevin Willmont, the latest Spike Lee joint is a modern...
Posted by Indiewire

The 3 Questions We Kept Asking About TV in 2015 (And How Actors and Producers Answered)

The world of television in 2015 was a swirl of fascinating chaos, with an incredible diversity of new stories being told episode by episode, supported by an industry coping with incredible change. There were a lot of stories to be told in 2015, and, in order to get those stories, there were set visits, and the TCAs, and calls to England, and balancing cocktail party hors d'oeuvres in one hand and a recording device in the other.  READ MORE: Indiewire's Top Stories of 2015 As Indiewire took advantage of every interview opportunity it could over the last 12 months to capture one of television's most intriguing years, there were plenty of things to be said. But there were also a couple of subjects we found ourselves bringing up over and over again with the people we spoke with. Below are just a few of their answers.  "What are 'dramedies,' and how should awards shows handle them?" Zander Lehmann (creator, "Casual"): "We don't...
Posted by Indiewire

7 Things We Learned About the TV Industry in 2015

1. There's No Such Thing as 'Too Much TV' Part of the problem with the "too much TV" discussion — started by John Landgraf at the summer TCAs when he claimed there were too many "good" original shows distracting fans from "great" shows — is how long it's gone on, so we'll keep this brief: "Good" and "great" are subjective terms, so — as appealing as they are to critics constantly trying to convince people to watch "The Americans" instead of "Empire" — one person's favorite show may be another person's least favorite show. And that's the beauty of having choices. Everyone doesn't have to watch the same thing. Each viewer can find what works and what is most vital to them at any given moment and watch it. What's wrong with that? Nothing. So even if we got sucked into the debate once or twice, let's all remember heading into 2016 that more original content means more choices (plus, more jobs for actors and creators)...
Posted by Indiewire

Aaron Paul and Michelle Monaghan On 'The Path' to a Cult in First Look at Jason Katims' Hulu Drama

Remember Aaron Paul? The two-time Emmy winner from "Breaking Bad" who's been killing it vocally on "BoJack Horseman" for the past two years? Of course you do. And everyone knows Michelle Monaghan from "True Detective" (Season 1!), not to mention "Gone Baby Gone" and "Mission Impossible III." What about Hugh Dancy, you know, the guy from a little show some people kind of liked called "Hannibal"(!!)? What if I were to tell you all three were starring in a new drama about a cult from the showrunner largely responsible for "Friday Night Lights'" brilliance?  Well, if you haven't guessed it, that's exactly what I'm telling you right now. A trailer hasn't dropped yet, but there are some first look photos available above and below.  Paul will play Eddie Lane, a convert to The Meyerist Movement who's suffering from a crisis of faith. Dancy's Cal Roberts is there to offer him salvation as the charismatic,...
Posted by Indiewire

PODCAST: Here Are the Movies We're Excited to See in 2016

This week's episode of Screen Talk is brought to you by DreamWorks Pictures and "Bridge of Spies." If you follow events in the movie world, 2015 was a big one: Companies like Netflix and Amazon made big moves into the distribution space, while The Weinstein Company talked about scaling back. The "Star Wars" and "Rocky" franchises got fresh faces. Diversity became a talking point for the industry. And now we have a whole new year to anticipate. For the final episode of Screen Talk in 2016, co-hosts Eric Kohn and Anne Thompson talk through these highlights from the past 12 months and review some of the films they're most excited about for the new year. Listen to the full episode above. Screen Talk is available on iTunes. You can subscribe here or via RSS. Share your feedback with Thompson and Kohn on Twitter or sound off in the comments. Browse previous installments here, review the show on  and be sure...
Posted by Indiewire

The 7 Boldest Risks Directors Took in Cinema This Year

READ MORE: The 13 Most Criminally Overlooked Indies and Foreign Films of 2015 Risk-taking is the lifeblood of cinema. Without enterprising directors who balk at conventional limits, movies might be stuck in the merry-go-round of lucrative but staid blockbusters. Of course, there is such a thing as too far. Some avid risk-takers, most notably "The Revenant's" Alejandro González Iñárritu (see below), have faced criticism for placing the cast and crew in tenuous conditions in the service of their vision. But whether you view their actions as foolhardy or valiant, risk-taking directors are the very reason cinema continues to reinvent itself. And for that, we at Indiewire are grateful.  1. Shooting in sign language — without subtitles.On paper, it's an impossible pitch. Miroslav Slaboshpitsky's "The Tribe" is set in a bleak Ukranian boarding school for the deaf. It's told in sign language, without voiceover or...
Posted by Indiewire

The Decline of Middle-Class Films and the Case for Government Funding

Editor's note: Writer-director William Dickerson is an Indiewire contributor who writes about the challenges facing non-blockbuster filmmakers and the decline of middle-class movies in American film.  READ MORE: How Can Middle-Class Filmmakers Make a Living? The current state of the movie business isn’t a surprise. I’m not the first one to point out its trajectory toward an untenable working environment. In 2013, producer Ted Hope said, "Filmmaking is not currently a sustainable occupation for any but the very rare. It is not enough to be very good at what you do if you want to survive by doing what you love." In the past two years since this statement, the middle space of the profession of filmmaking has been steadily shrinking. Filmmaking is a business, but it’s also an art, and if those two elements are not equal to each other, this business of art is not operating at its most profitable — from both a financial and cultural standpoint. The industry itself has...
Posted by Indiewire

Indiewire Veteran Peter Knegt Says Goodbye

One day back in September of 2006, I met three people that would drastically alter the direction of my life: Eugene Hernandez, Brian Brooks and James Israel. At the time, they made up pretty much the entire staff of indieWIRE (as it was then written), and they had been looking for a local writer to help them cover the Toronto International Film Festival. Based on the recommendation of a friend of a friend (thanks, Brad Horvath and Basil Tsiokos!), they chose me — and I can't really fathom what my life would be like now if they hadn't. The following year they hired me on permanently, setting my initial task as going to Cannes to cover the festival, no less (which will always remain the exceptionally glamorous reason I got my first passport). I've been employed in some capacity ever since, which makes saying goodbye pretty daunting. READ MORE: For Your Consideration: Final Thoughts On (and Predictions For) the Wild 2015 Oscar Race Over the past nine and a half years,...
Posted by Indiewire
More Posts Next page »