Saturday, May 31, 2014

2014 Golden Trailer Award Winners

Glad to see Gravity continuing to be recognized.

Best of Show
Gravity “Detached” Warner Bros/mOcean

Best Action
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire “World Event” Lionsgate/Trailer Park

Best Animation/Family
Frozen “Forces First Ped” Disney/Trailer Park

Best Comedy
Bad Words “Red Band Trailer” Focus Features/Mark Woolen & Associates

Best Documentary
Blackfish Magnolia/Zealot

Best Drama
Lee Daniel's The Butler The Weinstein Company/AV Squad

Best Fantasy Adventure
Maleficent “Dream” The Walt Disney Studios/Open Road Entertainment

Best Horror
The Conjuring “Case” Warner Bros./Buddha Jones

Best Independent Trailer
Dallas Buyers Club Focus Features/Mark Woolen & Associates

Best Music
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty “Go/Cloud” 20th Century Fox/Transit

Best Romance
The Fault in Our Stars “A Good Life/Story” 20th Century Fox/Motive Creative

Best Thriller
Gravity “Detached” Warner Bros./mOcean

Best Video Game Trailer
Assassin's Creed Black Flag Freedom  “Reveal Trailer” Ubisoft/Sunny Side Up Creative

The Don LaFontaine Award for Best Voiceover 
The Heat “Can You Dig It?” 20th Century Fox/Big Picture Entertainment

Golden Fleece
The Fifth Estate “The Future” Dreamworks/InSync + BemisBalkind

Most Original Trailer
This is the End “April Fools Trailer” Columbia Pictures/Vibe Creative, Inc.

Best Summer Blockbuster Trailer
Godzilla “Ravaged/Event” Warner Bros./Trailer Park

Trashiest Trailer
Bad Milo! Magnet Releasing/Jump Cut

Technical and Non Show Categories

Best Motion/Title Graphics
Transcendence “Singularity”, Warner Bros., Buddha Jones

Best Original Score
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire “Trailer 4A”, Lionsgate, CARVE

Best Sound Editing
Into the Storm “Listen Plane”, Warner Bros. Buddha Jones

Best Trailer – No Movie
SHERPA: In the Shadow of the Mountain, Felix Media, The Solid State

Foreign Trailers

Best Foreign Action Trailer
Protector 2 “Revenge”, Magnet Releasing, AV Squad

Best Foreign Animation Trailer
Ernest & Celestine, GKIDS, Zealot Productions Inc.

Best Foreign Comedy Trailer
Hector and the Search for Happiness “International”, Bankside Films, Zealot Productions Inc.

Best Foreign Documentary Trailer
Hawking “Trailer”, Vertigo Films, Intermission Film

Best Foreign Drama
Ida, Music Box Films, Zealot Productions Inc.

Best Foreign Graphics in a Trailer
Journey to the West “Demons”, China Film Group, AV Squad

Best Foreign Horror/Thriller Trailer
The Babadook, eOne Entertainment, The Solid State

Best Foreign Romance Trailer
Le Weekend, Music Box Films, Zealot Productions Inc.

Most Original Foreign Trailer
The Turning, Madman Entertainment, The Solid State

TV Spots

Best Action TV Spot
Captain America: The Winter Soldier “The World 60”, Disney, Trailer Park

Best Animation/Family TV Spot
The Lego Movie “Special Cast”, Warner Bros., TRANSIT

Best Comedy TV Spot
Neighbors “Mad Neighbors”, Universal Pictures, Workshop Creative

Best Drama TV Spot
Rush “Mark:60”, Universal Pictures, AV Squad

Best Documentary TV Spot
The Armstrong Lie “Ride 60”, Sony Pictures Classics, In Sync Advertising

Best Fantasy/Adventure TV Spot
Star Trek Into Darkness “Go :30”, Paramount Pictures, AV Squad

Best Foreign TV Spot
The Wind Rises “Visionary 30”, Disney/Studio Ghibli, Trailer Park

Best Graphics in a TV Spot
The Grand Budapest Hotel “30TV Dynamite”, Fox Searchlight, Giaronomo Productions

Best Horror TV Spot
The Conjuring “Event Review”, Warner Bros., TRANSIT

Best Independent TV Spot
12 Years a Slave “Fight Back”, Fox Searchlight, Ignition

Best Music TV Spot
Frozen “Let it Go Review” :60, Disney, Trailer Park

Best Romance TV Spot
The Great Gatsby “You and Me”, Warner Bros., Wild Card

Best Summer 2014 Blockbuster TV Spot
Godzilla “Fight”, Warner Bros., Aspect Ratio

Best Thriller TV Spot
Gravity “No Escape, Warner Bros., mOcean

Best Video Game TV Spot
Diablo III – Reaper of Souls “Face Off”, Blizzard Entertainment, CARVE

Best Voice Over TV Spot
Robocop “60 Infomercial”, Studio Canal, The Editpool

Most Original TV Spot
Muppets: Most Wanted “Across the Internet”, Disney, Buddha Jones


Best Action Poster
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Lionsgate, Ignition

Best Animation/Family Poster
Despicable Me 2 “Side by Side Billboard”, Universal Pictures, Ignition

Best Comedy Poster
Neighbors “Teaser One-sheet”, Universal Pictures, Ignition

Best Documentary Poster
Muscle Shoals, Magnolia Pictures, Cold Open

Best Drama Poster
Gravity, Warner Bros., The Refinery

Best Foreign Poster
Roxanne, Good Hands/The Drum

Best Horror Poster
You’re Next, Lionsgate, Ignition

Best Independent Poster
12 Years a Slave “One-sheet”, Fox Searchlight, Ignition

Best International Poster
Godzilla “International Spine One Sheet” Warner Bros., Ignition

Best Romance Poster
About Time, Universal Pictures/Working Title, The Refinery

Best Summer 2014 Blockbuster Poster
Godzilla “Main Campaign One Sheet,” Warner Bros., Ignition

Best Teaser Poster
The Purge: Anarchy, Universal, Ignition

Best Thriller Poster
You’re Next “Comic-Con Poster”, Lionsgate, Ignition

Best Video Game Poster
Need for Speed: Rivals “One-sheet”, Electronic Arts, Ignition

Best Wildposts
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire “Teaser Outdoor”, Lionsgate, Ignition

Most Original Poster
You’re Next “Graffiti Billboard”, Lionsgate, Ignition

Trashiest Poster
Lovelace, Lionsgate, Cold Open

Best Motion Poster
2 Guns, eOne Entertainment, Greenhaus GFX


Best Standee for a Feature Film
Despicable Me 2 “Whack-a-Minion Standee”, Universal, Ignition

Advertising in Theater & On Screen

Best Pre-show Theatrical Advertising for a Brand
White House Down “NCM”, Sony, Mob Scene

Original/Experiential Cinematic/Movie Advertising

Most Innovative Advertising for a Feature Film
The Wolf of Wall Street “Marty Party”, Paramount Pictures, Comedy Central

Most Innovative Advertising for a Video Game
Ninja Gaiden Z “Load of Shit”, Buddha Jones

Most Innovative Advertising for a Brand/Product
The Lego Movie “Behind the Bricks”, Warner Bros., Aspect Ratio

Best Vine
Sabotage, Open Road, Buddha Jones

Best Viral Campaign
Muppets: Most Wanted “Watched the Commercials Extended Online”, Disney, Buddha Jones

Film Festival

Best Film Festival Trailer
New Directors New Films 2014, Film Society of Lincoln Center, Jump Cut Creative

Best Film Festival Poster
Palm Springs Film Festival, Ignition

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Miniseries

2014 Contenders
American Horror Story: Coven
Dancing on the Edge
The White Queen
The Hollow Crown
Bonnie and Clyde
Rosemary's Baby
Young Doctor's Notebook
Under the Dome
Mob City
The Spoils of Babylon
Fleming The Man Who Would Be Bond
Full Circle

Commentary - When True Detective moved to Drama, and Sherlock apparently decided to submit the third part as a TV Movie (I'm still not sure about that one, but for now we will stick with it), this race opened up for some second tier contenders to make it into the top slots. We know that Fargo is going to make the cut, and depending on how everything ends up, I think that it is clearly the front-runner now. American Horror Story had a great season with Coven. Some would disagree, but I think that if Fargo were not in the running, it would finally win a programming Emmy award. Beyond that the race is not as tough. Dancing on the Edge has the buzz, Chiwetel Ejiofor (who just got an Oscar nod for 12 Years a Slave), and Jacqueline Bisset (who made quite a splash at this years Globes). I think it easily gets in. Luther got in in 2012, and missed the cut last year. It's a great program, but the Television Academy voters clearly view it as a space filler. This year, it might actually need to fill a space. Two royal productions, The Hollow Crown and The White Queen both are angling to make a splash. I think that both are possibilities, although they could either cancel each other out, or similar voters could rally behind one production over the other. But both have the casts and buzz to make it in. I would love to see Treme make it in, but it has been overlooked way too many times by the Television Academy, so it looks like a long shot this time around. Bonnie and Clyde, Rosemary's Baby, Klondike, Hostages and Young Doctor's Notebook all have a litany of stars in front of the camera, and any of them could emerge as a dark horse contender. Right now, they are all still fighting for buzz and votes to break through.

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Best Featured Actor and Actress in a Musical

Best Featured Actor in a Musical
Will Win - James Monroe Iglehart "Aladdin"

Could Win - Danny Burstein "Cabaret"

Commentary - This is Danny Burstein's fifth Tony nomination for his role in the revival of Cabaret. There is so much good will, and there is the fact that he has yet to win one. But it looks like he may have to sit out yet again. James Monroe Iglehart, who had a scene-stealing role in the Tony-winner Memphis, is apparently the reason to see the stage adaptation of Aladdin. The reviews for his role are simply off-the-wall excellent, and I think he has the buzz to beat the industry favorite.

Best Featured Actress in a Musical
Will Win - Lena Hall "Hedwig and the Angry Inch"

Could Win - Linda Emond "Cabaret" or Lauren Worsham "A Gentleman's Guide to Murder"

Commentary -  It looks like a brutal race is brewing in this category. Linda Emond is a previous nominee, and is a standout in Cabaret. Lauren Worsham is making her Broadway debut, and has already racked up accolades for her star-making turn in A Gentleman's Guide to Murder. But I think that Lena Hall, who has managed to earn praise up against the buzz and towering performance of Neil Patrick Harris, is going to walk away next Sunday with her first Tony Award.

Friday, May 30, 2014

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Best Featured Actor in a Play

Will Win - Mark Rylance "Twelfth Night"

Could Win - Brian J. Smith "The Glass Menagerie" or Stephen Fry "Twelfth Night"

Commentary - This is Brian J. Smith's first Tony nomination on his third Broadway production, but he is said to be a standout among a talented cast in the revival of The Glass Menagerie. And Stephen Fry is a popular actor of both stage and screen, and his name alone could inspire votes. But I believe that it is his co-star two-time Tony winner Mark Rylance, who definitely got some of the best-in-show reviews for the Twelfth Night/Richard III production takes home his third.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Best Featured Actress in a Play

Will Win - Mare Winningham "Casa Valentina" 

Could Win - Celia Keenan-Bolger "The Glass Menagerie" 

Commentary - So there is apparently a Tony curse for actors in the various versions of The Glass Menagerie. So even Celia Keenan-Bolger, who is on her third Tony nomination, is not necessarily a lock. Instead it looks like film and television actress Mare Winningham might take the prize instead for Casa Valentina. She is a well-known name, a respected veteran character actor, and while she doesn't have the history on the stage as her competitor, reviews suggest that she is definitely a scene-stealer. I think she helps to leave the curse intact. 

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actor in a Drama Series

2014 Contenders
Bryan Cranston "Breaking Bad"
Kevin Spacey "House of Cards"
Matthew McConaughey "True Detective"
Woody Harrelson "True Detective"
James Spader "The Blacklist"
Jon Hamm "Mad Men"
Damian Lewis "Homeland"
Jeff Daniels "The Newsroom"
Matthew Rhys "The Americans"
Michael Sheen "Masters of Sex"
Hugh Bonneville "Downton Abbey"
Steve Buscemi "Boardwalk Empire"
Liev Schreiber "Ray Donovan"
Charlie Hunnam "Sons of Anarchy"
Andrew Lincoln "The Walking Dead"
Peter Krause "Parenthood"
Patrick Dempsey "Grey's Anatomy"
Clark Gregg "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
Hugh Dancy "Hannibal"
Michael C. Hall "Dexter"
Freddie Highmore "Bate's Motel"
Kevin Bacon "The Following"
Timothy Olyphant "Justified"
Travis Fimmel "Vikings"
Demian Bichir "The Bridge"
Jamie Bell "Turn"
Jonny Lee Miller "Elementary"

Commentary - If you think the Best Actress-Drama Race is a tough one, then this one is just plain brutal. We know this for sure, that Bryan Cranston and Kevin Spacey are locks. Their shows are fantastic and clearly Emmy favorites, the both have incredible material, and are two of the best actors working today. I would also put good money on Matthew McConaughey, who is fresh off an Oscar win, and does tremendous work in True Detective. You know how much Emmy voters love Oscar winners, and this one is a true movie star. His co-star Woody Harrelson should be a shoo-in, but this category is so tough, his nomination is far from certain. Other newcomers hope to make a splash in the race including former winner James Spader. I never really liked him when he was winning all those unnecessary Emmys for The Practice and Boston Legal. But this time around, he is totally deserving of recognition for his juicy turn in The Blacklist. I think that he is so popular among voters, they are willing to give him another try at Emmy gold. Michael Sheen is also a potential for Masters of Sex, although I think he might get passed over for other contenders simply because his performance is a bit subdued. All of these new contenders means that some popular old ones might finally be boosted. Hugh Bonneville is most certainly going to be left off this year, although he surprised us the last two years and got in, so don't count him out yet. Damian Lewis is a previous winner and his character had some meaty material this season. But with Homeland's sharp decline, I wonder if he still has enough goodwill to even make the top six. Jeff Daniels won last year, and now may not even make the cut (something that happens more frequently than you make think). The Newsroom didn't really take off with Emmy voters, and there are just too many names in the pot this year. But once again, you cannot count him out just yet. Past nominees like Michael C. Hall, Timothy Olyphant, and Steve Buscemi are always on the radar. As are contenders such as Matthew Rhys, Liev Schreiber, Hugh Dancy, and Freddie Highmore.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Best Book of a Musical and Best Musical Score

Best Book of a Musical
Will Win - Robert L. Freedman "A Gentleman's Guide to Murder"
Could Win - Woody Allen "Bullets Over Broadway" or Douglas McGrath "Beautiful: The Carole King Musical"
Commentary - When I heard that Woody Allen, the New York legend, was coming to Broadway with an adaptation of his best films, the first thing I thought of was this Tony category. Now don't get me wrong, Woody could still easily win this, simply because of his popularity. But the production premiered to lackluster reviews, and overall it did not really register with Tony voters. I think this paves the way for Gentleman's Guide to Murder, the odds-on favorite to take the top prize, to take this one along the way as part of its total haul.

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Will Win - Jason Robert Brown "The Bridges of Madison County"
Could Win - Steven Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman "A Gentleman's Guide to Murder"
Commentary - This, unlike the book race, is a bit of a tight one, and I am going out on a limb here, and also kind of contradicting myself. This is the first major production for the Gentleman's Guide to Murder duo, but it is the front runner for Best Musical (alas my argument for Book above). But they are going up against an extremely popular composer on Broadway Jason Robert Brown, who has a Tony Award, and a plethora of nominations under his belt. And the music apparently was the best part about the production. This may be a long shot, and maybe one of the ones I change before my final list. But for now, I am sticking with the beloved veteran.

4th Annual BTJA Critics Choice Television Award Nominees

Unlike their film counterparts, the BFCA, the BTJA is not concerned with matching up with their industry counterpart. The BFCA purposefully tries to match up with the early Oscar buzz. But the BTJA kind of goes its own way, and their nominees are always surprising and refreshing. I will go into more detail later as we get closer to the proceedings (June 19th on The CW). For now, here is the full list of nominees, and more information can be found at

The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Broad City (Comedy Central)
Louie (FX)
Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)
Silicon Valley (HBO)
Veep (HBO)

Louis CK, Louie (FX)
Chris Messina, The Mindy Project (FOX)
Thomas Middleditch, Silicon Valley (HBO)
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Adam Scott, Parks and Recreation (NBC)
Robin Williams, The Crazy Ones (CBS)

Ilana Glazer, Broad City (Comedy Central)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep (HBO)
Wendi McLendon-Covey, The Goldbergs (ABC)
Amy Schumer, Inside Amy Schumer (Comedy Central)
Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation (NBC)
Emmy Rossum, Shameless (Showtime)

Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine (FOX)
Keith David, Enlisted (FOX)
Tony Hale, Veep (HBO)
Albert Tsai, Trophy Wife (ABC)
Christopher Evan Welch, Silicon Valley (HBO)
Jeremy Allen White, Shameless (Showtime)

Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Laverne Cox, Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)
Kaley Cuoco, The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Allison Janney, Mom (CBS)
Kate Mulgrew, Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)
Merritt Wever, Nurse Jackie (Showtime)

Uzo Aduba, Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)
Sarah Baker, Louie (FX)
James Earl Jones, The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Mimi Kennedy, Mom (CBS)
Andrew Rannells, Girls (HBO)
Lauren Weedman, Looking (HBO)

The Americans (FX)
Breaking Bad (AMC)
Game of Thrones (HBO)
The Good Wife (CBS)
Masters of Sex (Showtime)
True Detective (HBO)

Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad (AMC)
Hugh Dancy, Hannibal (NBC)
Freddie Highmore, Bates Motel (A&E)
Matthew McConaughey, True Detective (HBO)
Matthew Rhys, The Americans (FX)
Michael Sheen, Masters of Sex (Showtime)

Lizzy Caplan, Masters of Sex (Showtime)
Vera Farmiga, Bates Motel (A&E)
Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife (CBS)
Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black (BBC America)
Keri Russell, The Americans (FX)
Robin Wright, House of Cards (Netflix)

Josh Charles, The Good Wife (CBS)
Walton Goggins, Justified (FX)
Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad (AMC)
Peter Sarsgaard, The Killing (AMC)
Jon Voight, Ray Donovan (Showtime)
Jeffrey Wright, Boardwalk Empire (HBO)

Christine Baranski, The Good Wife (CBS)
Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad (AMC)
Annet Mahendru, The Americans (FX)
Melissa McBride, The Walking Dead (AMC)
Maggie Siff, Sons of Anarchy (FX)
Bellamy Young, Scandal (ABC)

Beau Bridges, Masters of Sex (Showtime)
Walton Goggins, Sons of Anarchy (FX)
Allison Janney, Masters of Sex (Showtime)
Joe Morton, Scandal (ABC)
Carrie Preston, The Good Wife (CBS)
Diana Rigg, Game of Thrones (HBO)

An Adventure in Space and Time (BBC America)
Burton and Taylor (BBC America)
Killing Kennedy (National Geographic Channel)
The Normal Heart (HBO)
Sherlock: His Last Vow (PBS)
The Trip to Bountiful (Lifetime)

American Horror Story: Coven (FX)
Bonnie & Clyde (A&E/History/Lifetime)
Dancing on the Edge (Starz)
Fargo (FX)
The Hollow Crown (PBS)
Luther (BBC America)

David Bradley, An Adventure in Space and Time (BBC America)
Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock: His Last Vow (PBS)
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Dancing on the Edge (Starz)
Martin Freeman, Fargo (FX)
Mark Ruffalo, The Normal Heart (HBO)
Billy Bob Thornton, Fargo (FX)

Helena Bonham Carter, Burton and Taylor (BBC America)
Minnie Driver, Return to Zero (Lifetime)
Whoopi Goldberg, A Day Late and a Dollar Short (Lifetime)
Holliday Grainger, Bonnie & Clyde (A&E/History/Lifetime)
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Coven (FX)
Cicely Tyson, The Trip to Bountiful (Lifetime)

Matt Bomer, The Normal Heart (HBO)
Warren Brown, Luther (BBC America)
Martin Freeman, Sherlock: His Last Vow (PBS)
Colin Hanks, Fargo (FX)
Joe Mantello, The Normal Heart (HBO)
Blair Underwood, The Trip to Bountiful (Lifetime)

Amanda Abbington, Sherlock: His Last Vow (PBS)
Kathy Bates, American Horror Story: Coven (FX)
Ellen Burstyn, Flowers in the Attic (Lifetime)
Jessica Raine, An Adventure in Space and Time (BBC America)
Julia Roberts, The Normal Heart (HBO)
Allison Tolman, Fargo (FX)

Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (FOX/National Geographic Channel)
Deadliest Catch (Discovery)
Duck Dynasty (A&E)
Mythbusters (Discovery)
Top Gear (BBC America)
Undercover Boss (CBS)

The Amazing Race (CBS)
Project Runway (Lifetime)
Shark Tank (ABC)
Survivor (CBS)
Top Chef (Bravo)
The Voice (NBC)

Tom Bergeron, Dancing With the Stars (ABC)
Carson Daly, The Voice (NBC)
Cat Deeley, So You Think You Can Dance (FOX)
Gordon Ramsay, MasterChef (FOX)
RuPaul, RuPaul’s Drag Race (Logo)
Neil deGrasse Tyson, Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (FOX/National Geographic Channel)

Jimmy Kimmel Live! (ABC)
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (NBC)
The Ellen DeGeneres Show (Time Telepictures)
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Comedy Central)
The Colbert Report (Comedy Central)
Conan (TBS)

Archer (FX)
Bob’s Burgers (FOX)
The Simpsons (FOX)
Family Guy (FOX)
Phineas and Ferb (Disney XD)
Adventure Time (Cartoon Network)

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

30th Annual Television Critics Association (TCA) Award Nominees

We have known for years that sometimes the TCA picks contenders that do not go on to Emmy glory, but I will say that in terms of buzz and press, these are still important awards and can impact the race as a whole. Which means that shows like True Detective, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Orange is the New Black, the rejuvenated The Good Wife, and The Mindy Project all received some excellent (and deserved) mentions that could improve their Emmy chances. In terms of individual performers, most of them will end up in the Emmy hunt, but there was boost for outside contenders like Tatiana Maslany, Mindy Kaling, Matthew Rhys, and Julianna Margulies (who was snubbed last year). The winners will be announced on July 19th. Check out the full list below:

Program of the Year
“Breaking Bad”
“Game of Thrones”
“The Good Wife”
“Orange Is the New Black”
“True Detective”

Best New Program
“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”
“Orange Is the New Black”
“Sleepy Hollow”
“True Detective”

Best Drama Series 
“The Americans”
“Breaking Bad”
“Game of Thrones”
“House of Cards”
“The Good Wife”

Best Movie, Miniseries or Special
“American Horror Story: Coven”
 “The Returned”
“True Detective”

Individual Achievement in Drama
Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad”
Julianna Margulies, “The Good Wife”
Tatiana Maslany, “Orphan Black”
Matthew McConaughey, “True Detective”
Matthew Rhys, “The Americans”

Best Comedy Series
“The Big Bang Theory”
“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”
“The Mindy Project”

Individual Achievement in Comedy
 Louis C.K., “Louie”
Mindy Kaling, “The Mindy Project”
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”
Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory”
Amy Poehler, “Parks and Recreation”

Best News and Information Series
“CBS Sunday Morning”
“The Daily Show with Jon Stewart”
“60 Minutes”

Best Reality Series
“The Amazing Race”
 “RuPaul's Drag Race”
“Shark Tank”
“The Voice”

Best Youth Series
“Adventure Time”
“Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood”
“The Fosters”
“Sesame Street”
“Switched at Birth”

Career Achievement Award
 Mark Burnett
 James Burrows
 Valerie Harper
 Jay Leno
 William Shatner

Heritage Award
“Saturday Night Live”
“South Park”
“Star Trek”
“Twin Peaks”

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Best Director of a Play and Director of a Musical

Best Director of a Play
Will Win - Tim Carroll "Twelfth Night"
Could Win - John Tiffany "The Glass Menagerie"
Commentary - This one is tough to predict. Tim Carroll helped pulled two major productions together in one show, and, according to reviews really brought Shakespeare to life on stage. But he is a newcomer to the field, and so they may not be comfortable enough to reward him up against other contenders such as John Tiffany, who one recently for Once. This is really a two-way race, but I think they will lean towards Carroll.

Best Director of a Musical
Will Win - Darko Tresnjak "Gentleman's Guide to Murder"
Could Win - Michael Mayer "Hedwig and the Angry Inch"
Commentary -  Most likely Gentleman's Guide to Murder and Hedwig and the Angry Inch will win the top two musical categories. That means that there is a battle brewing in the direction category. Michael Mayer has brought a lot of energy to Hedwig, and is a previous Tony winner and has a storied awards history. But a lot of the focus of this revival has been thrown toward Neil Patrick Harris. Plus he is up against the Best Musical front runner Gentleman's Guide to Murder, directed by Darko Tresnjak. It is his first nomination, but I think he will pull it off.

Monday, May 26, 2014

2014 Tony Award Predictions: Technical Awards

So we are less than two weeks till the 2014 Tony Awards, which means it is time to do some predicting! Check out my predictions below for the technical awards:

Best Choreography
Will Win - After Midnight
Could Win - Bullets Over Broadway or Aladdin

Best Orchestrations
Will Win - Bridges of Madison County
Could Win - Beautiful: The Carole King Musical or Gentleman's Guide to Murder

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Will Win - Act One
Could Win - The Cripple of the Irishmaan or The Glass Menagerie

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Will Win - Rocky
Could Win - Gentleman's Guide to Murder

Best Costume Design of a Play
Will Win - Twelfth Night
Could Win - Casa Valentina

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Will Win - Gentleman's Guide to Murder
Could Win - Bullets Over Broadway or After Midnight

Best Lighting Design of a Play
Will Win - The Glass Menagerie
Could Win - Machinal

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Will Win - Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Could Win - Rocky

Best Sound Design of a Play
Will Win - Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill
Could Win - Machinal

Best Sound Design of a Musical
Will Win - Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Could Win - Beautiful or After Midnight

Sunday, May 25, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actress in a Drama Series

2014 Contenders
Claire Danes "Homeland"
Kerry Washington "Scandal"
Robin Wright "House of Cards"
Elisabeth Moss "Mad Men"
Michelle Dockery "Downton Abbey"
Julianna Margulies "The Good Wife"
Lizzy Caplan "Masters of Sex"
Connie Britton "Nashville"
Vera Farmiga "Bate's Motel"
Tatiana Maslany "Orphan Black"
Keri Russell "The Americans"
Mariska Hargitay "Law & Order: SVU"
Elizabeth McGovern "Downton Abbey"
Megan Boone "The Blacklist"
Diane Kruger "The Bridge"
Ellen Pompeo "Grey's Anatomy"
Katey Segal "Sons of Anarchy"
Mireille Enos "The Killing"
Lucy Liu "Elementary"
Ginnifer Goodwin "Once Upon a Time"
Jennifer Morrison "Once Upon a Time"
Ming-Na Wen "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."

Commentary - Can Claire Danes actually win a third Emmy in a row for Homeland? Based on her popularity alone, and what will probably be a great episode submission, the answer is yes, but she will really have to fight this time. Not only has this category gotten more competitive this year, but Homeland's quality has dipped tremendously, and Television Academy voters have probably noticed. All of last year's nominees are back in the race, although there could be some shakeups this time around. Two safe bets are Kerry Washington and Robin Wright, and Wright in particular has the material this year, and now a Globe win under her belt, to beat Danes. Two stalwarts in the category are Michelle Dockery and Elisabeth Moss, who many believe limped into last year's race (I don't necessarily agree, but whatever). I think there continued success here really depends on whether Emmy voters still love Downton and Mad Men as both series show their age. The other two were both surprise nominees. I think most pundits are underestimating Vera Farmiga again, and while it is hard to narrow it down to six slots, she should not be discounted, especially with that haunting season finale. And all of the snobs in the world can lament the soapy trappings of Nashville which limped into a third season after solid, but not spectacular ratings. But Connie Britton is clearly a favorite among Emmy voters, and continues to actually do great work on the show (so does Hayden Panettiere). Every time we doubt her, she proves us wrong. But these seven women all have to really watch out for some new and old contenders all fighting their way into what is shaping up to be one of the toughest races in the upcoming season. First and foremost is Julianna Margulies. She was inexplicably left off the roster last year, but with The Good Wife having a renewed energy this season, and all of the tension and emotion she had to put forth, I think she is going to find her way back in. Tatiana Maslany was a critical favorite last year, but nobody was actually watching Orphan Black. This year, the ratings have multiplied and so has the buzz. She would make a lot of pundits and bloggers happy if she broke through. Finally, Lizzy Caplan, who brings a successful balance of ferocity and vulnerability to Masters of Sex should be a contender, whether Emmy voters are paying attention or not remains to be seen. Also be on the lookout for Megan Boone who holds her own against James Spader in The Blacklist, Keri Russell in The Americans, Diana Kruger in The Bridge, and Mariska Hargitay, who NBC is fighting to get back into this race (although their campaign last year for Monica Potter failed, so I don't know if it will work this time around).

Saturday, May 24, 2014

2014 Cannes Film Festival Award Winners

In terms of Oscar, Winter Sleep will probably have an uphill climb. But early contenders Julianne Moore, Bennett Miller, and Timothy Spall got off on the right foot with early wins here at Cannes. Check out the full list below:

Palme d'Or
Winter Sleep, Nuri Bilge Ceylon

Grand Prix
The Wonders (Alice Rohrwacher)

Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher

Timothy Spall, Mr Turner

Julianne Moore, Maps to the Stars

Jury Prize
Mommy (Xavier Dolan) and Goodbye to Language (Jean-Luc Godard)

Andrey Zvyagintsev and Oleg Negin, Leviathan

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actor in a Comedy Series

2014 Contenders
Jim Parsons "The Big Bang Theory"
Louis C.K. "Louie"
Don Cheadle "House of Lies"
Matt LeBlanc "Episodes"
Andy Samberg "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
William H. Macy "Shameless"
Robin Williams "The Crazy Ones"
Jon Cryer "Two and a Half Men"
Johnny Galecki "The Big Bang Theory"
Josh Radnor "How I Met Your Mother"
John Goodman "Alpha House"
Will Arnett "The Millers"
Jake Johnson "New Girl"
Chris O'Dowd "Family Tree"
Michael J. Fox "The Michael J. Fox Show"
Sean Hayes "Sean Saves the World"
Thomas Middleditch "Silicon Valley"
Jeff Garlin "The Goldbergs"
Adam Scott "Parks & Recreation"
Joel McHale "Community"
Tim Allen "Last Man Standing"
Jason Biggs "Orange is the New Black"
Danny McBride "Eastbound & Down"
Jonathan Groff "Looking"
Cedric the Entertainer "The Soul Man"
David Walton "About a Boy"
Tim Allen "Last Man Standing"
Matthew Morrison "Glee"
Billy Gardell "Mike & Molly"

Commentary - Now that Alec Baldwin is finally out of this race, we may actually see some new blood in this category, maybe even a bit of a shakeup, which would be incredibly refreshing after this category has stagnated for a while now. Two contenders who will still be in this race, and will most likely battle for the prize are Jim Parsons and Louis C.K. Both their shows will be top contenders in the series prize, and as always, both have plenty of episode choices to pave their way to Emmy glory. While I'm not that fond of Episodes or House of Lies, Matt LeBlanc and Don Cheadle will probably still make the cut as both are clearly favorites within the Television Academy. That still leaves two slots for new contenders and the potential for some freshness, even though I would like to see three or four instead of just two. At the top of the list for new contenders is Andy Samberg. Brooklyn Nine-Nine pulled off a shocker when it, as well as Samberg took home Golden Globes in January. Now we all know that there are tremendous differences in Golden Globe television awards and the Emmys, but it doesn't hurt its buzz. Plus, this is a relatively weak category, and Samberg is certainly in the mix. Also in the mix are a trio of veterans whose shows were all cancelled. Now I might be crazy to include them as top contenders, most shows who are cancelled so quickly don't make Emmy buzz, but when Emmy winner Sean Hayes, five-time Emmy winner Michael J. Fox, and Oscar and two-time Emmy winner Robin Williams are big names on a ballot populated with few contenders. Of the bunch, Williams, whose show actually got a full season, is probably the best bet. Also look out for previous nominee/winner Johnny Galecki and Jon Cryer, particularly Galecki who had a great episode with Penny later on in the season (I won't spoil it for the four of you who don't know), and might be able to sneak back in. There are some big question marks on the rest of the outside contenders that could be dark horses. John Goodman is an Emmy-winner and a bona fide movie star, are they watching Alpha House enough to push him in? Is this the year that long overlooked actors Adam Scott, Josh Radnor, and Joel McHale finally make a splash? Will Jake Johnson make it in this time after narrowly missing the cut last year? These and so many other questions will be answered before we know it .

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actress in a Comedy Series

2014 Emmy Contenders
Julia Louis-Dreyfus "Veep"
Amy Poehler "Parks & Recreation"
Lena Dunham "Girls"
Edie Falco "Nurse Jackie"
Anna Faris "Mom"
Taylor Schilling "Orange is the New Black"
Melissa McCarthy "Mike & Molly"
Zooey Deschanel "New Girl"
Mindy Kaling "The Mindy Project"
Malin Akerman "Trophy Wife"
Sarah Michelle Gellar "The Crazy Ones"
Lea Michele "Glee"
Patricia Heaton "The Middle"
Wendi McLendon-Covey "The Goldbergs"
Minnie Driver "About a Boy"
Courtney Cox "Cougar Town"
Kat Dennings "2 Broke Girls"
Beth Behrs "2 Broke Girls"
Martha Plimpton "Raising Hope"
Kirstie Alley "Kirstie"
Jenna Elfman "Growing Up Fisher"
Rachel Harris "Surviving Jack"
Emmy Rossum "Shameless"
Laurie Metcalfe "Getting On"
Ana Ortiz "Devious Maids"
Dania Ramirez "Devious Maids"
Lennon Parham "Playing House"
Jessica St. Clair "Playing House"

Commentary - This has become one of my favorite categories in recent years, probably because there are so many incredible opportunities for women in television comedy nowadays. Leading the pack is two-time winner (for this show, four total) Julia Louis-Dreyfus who returns with another brilliant season of Veep. She could win a third in a row, but I think she will face some still competition. There is first and foremost Amy Poehler. She finally won a major award this year with a Golden Globe, and recently took home an American Comedy Award. I think she is starting to build a momentum, and let's face it, its about damn time she won an Emmy. Previous winners Melissa McCarthy and Edie Falco are always in the mix, their biggest challenge will be getting a nomination. Lena Dunham continues to shine on Girls, which is having a much better season this year (I still don't get it, but I respect her talent). Also watching out for Zooey Deschanel, who could bounce back after missing out last year, and Mindy Kaling, who has built The Mindy Project into a  must see show (even though not enough of you are actually watching it!!). Some contenders hope to make a splash and really shakeup this category, which has been kind of stalemated for a few years now (I don't think that is necessarily a bad thing, but not many new contenders). Taylor Schilling is probably the strongest of the new bunch, as Orange is the New Black could really break through across the Comedy categories. The other major new contender is Anna Faris. The Emmys could focus on Allison Janney, but if they are paying attention to the show as a whole then Faris (and guest star Octavia Spencer), could end up on a lot of ballots. Malin Akerman and Sarah Michelle Gellar's shows both got cancelled (a real black mark for both networks), but they both have effervescent characters and could be seen as bright and refreshing nominees to choose. Also watch out for Lea Michelle, Minnie Driver, Martha Plimpton, Patricia Heaton, and Wendi McLendon-Covey. Also I would like to give a personal shout out to Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair for Playing House. The show is quirky, light and fun, perfect for summer, and these two leading ladies have an incredible chemistry that makes the show a lot of fun to watch. They will be ignored by the Emmys, but I hope at least a few voters pay attention.

Monday, May 19, 2014

2014 Cannes Film Festival: Bennett Miller's Foxcatcher Premieres

We have been waiting entirely too long to see Foxcatcher, after it was bumped from 2013 to get out of that brutal Oscar season. It premiered at Cannes last night, and according to early reviews, the final product was totally worth the wait. Miller looks to have knocked it out of the park again, making it three in a row (Capote and Moneyball being the first two in this trilogy). Word is not only positive on Miller's direction, but the script, and the trio of stars, Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo, and Channing Tatum are also getting their due and already garnering a ton of early Oscar buzz. We'll have to see how this lands in the states, but it looks like Miller could have another great Oscar nomination morning come January.

Justin Chang at Variety gets straight to the point with the film's potential Oscar credentials:

"...this insidiously gripping psychological drama is a model of bleak, bruising, furiously concentrated storytelling, anchored by exceptional performances from Channing Tatum, Mark Ruffalo and an almost unrecognizable Steve Carell. Perhaps the sole credible awards-season heavyweight to have emerged from this year’s Cannes Film Festival, the Nov. 14 Sony Classics release should land with major impact among serious-minded moviegoers, as well as a possible cross-section of Tatum and Carell fans who don’t mind a dramatic change of pace."

Full Review:

Jessica Kiang at The Playlist at Indiewire writes:

"We’ve been anticipating "Foxcatcher" since forever, it feels like, and our expectations were sky high, and yet in almost every way this towering film exceeds them. The sweeping intelligence of Miller’s enormous movie feels like it will be feeding our minds for days to come and as the best of his films, it is also simply one of the best dramas dissecting contemporary America (despite its period) that we've ever seen. Like the fox hunts that are a recurring motif or like the munitions with which the du Pont family first made their fortune, the arc of this story tends inexorably towards senseless death, but Miller has taken this unthinkable crime and carefully, precisely, dazzlingly, thought it out."

Full Review:

Todd McCarthy at The Hollywood Reporter writes:

"Centered on an astonishing and utterly unexpected serious turn by Steve Carell, this beautifully modulated work has a great deal on its mind about America's privileged class, usurious relationships, men's ways of proving themselves, brotherly bonds and how deeply sublimated urges can assert themselves in the most unsavory ways. Yet another adventurous, first-class production from Annapurna Pictures, the Sony Pictures Classics release has everything going for it to prevail as one of the major prestige titles of late 2014."

Full Review:

2014 Billboard Music Award Winners

Top Artist
Justin Timberlake

Top Hot 100 Song
Robin Thicke featuring T.I. & Pharrell, "Blurred Lines"

Top Billboard 200 Album
Justin Timberlake, "The 20/20 Experience"

Top Duo/Group
Imagine Dragons

Top New Artist

Top Touring Artist
Bon Jovi

Top Male Artist
Justin Timberlake

Top Female Artist
Katy Perry

Top Hot 100 Artist
Imagine Dragons

Top Billboard 200 Artist
Justin Timberlake

Top Digital Song Artist
Robin Thicke, featuring T.I. & Pharrell, "Blurred Lines"

Top Radio Song Artist
Robin Thicke, featuring T.I. & Pharrell, "Blurred Lines"

Top Social Artist
Justin Bieber

Top Streaming Artist
Miley Cyrus

Top R&B Artist
Justin Timberlake

Top Rap Artist

Top Rock Artist
Imagine Dragons

Top Country Artist
Luke Bryan

Top Latin Artist
Marc Anthony

Top Dance/Electronic Artist
Daft Punk

Top Christian Artist
Chris Tomlin

Top R&B Album
Justin Timberlake, "The 20/20 Experience"

Top Rap Album
Eminem, "The Marshall Mathers LP 2"

Top Country Album
Luke Bryan, "Crash My Party"

Top Rock Album
Imagine Dragons, "Night Vision"

Top Latin Album
Marc Anthony, "3.0"

Top Dance/Electronic Album
Daft Punk, "Random Access Memories"

Top Christian Album
Alan Jackson, "Precious Memories: Volume II"

Top Digital Song
Robin Thicke featuring T.I. & Pharrell, "Blurred Lines"

Top Radio Song
Robin Thicke featuring T.I. & Pharrell, "Blurred Lines"

Top Streaming Song (audio)
Imagine Dragons, "Radioactive"

Top Streaming Song (video)
Miley Cyrus, "Wrecking Ball"

Top R&B Song
Robin Thicke, "Blurred Lines"

Top Country Song
Florida George Line, "Cruise"

Top Rock SongLorde, "Royals"

Top Rap Song
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Featuring Ray Dalton, "Can't Hold Us"

Top Christian Song
Matthew West, "Hello, My Name Is"

Top Dance/Electronic Song
Avicii, "Wake Me Up!"

Top Latin Song
Marc Anthony,"Vivir Mi Vida"

2014 BAFTA Television Award Winners

The full list of winners, and other information about this year's BAFTA Television Awards can be found at: Breaking Bad wins again!


Situation Comedy
"Him & Her: The Wedding," BBC Three

Female Performance in a Comedy Programme
"Katherine Parkinson," The IT Crowd, Channel 4

Male Performance in a Comedy Programme
"Richard Ayoade," The IT Crowd, Channel 4

Entertainment Programme
"Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway," ITV

Comedy and Comedy Entertainment Programme 
"A League of Their Own," Sky One

Entertainment Performance
Ant and Dec, "Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway," ITV


Drama Series 
"Broadchurch," ITV

"In the Flesh," BBC Three

Single Drama
"Complicit," Channel 4

Soap & Continuing Drama
"Coronation Street," ITV

"Breaking Bad," Sony Pictures Television/Netflix

Drama Actor 
Sean Harris, "Southcliffe,v Channel 4

Drama Actress 
Olvia Colman, "Broadchurch,v ITV

Drama Supporting Actor
David Bradley, "Broadchurch," ITV

Drama Supporting Actress
Sarah Lancashire, "Last Tango in Halifax," BBC One


Reality and Constructed Factual  - "Gogglebox," Channel 4


News Coverage
" ITV News at Ten: Woolwich Attacks," ITN for ITV News/ITV

Current Affairs 
"Syria: Across the Lines (Dispatches)," Channel 4

Sport and Live Event 
"The Ashes 2013 – 1st Test, Day 5," BSKYB, Sky Sports/Sky Sports 2

Single Documentary
"The Murder Trial," Channel 4

"Long Lost Family," ITV

Factual Series
"Bedlam," The Garden Productions/Channel 4

Specialist Factual 
"David Attenborough’s Natural History Museum Alive 3D," SKY 3D


Radio Times Audience Award
"Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor"

Julie Walters

Special Award
Cilla Black

Sunday, May 18, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actor in a TV Movie/Miniseries

2014 Contenders
Mark Ruffalo "The Normal Heart"
Benedict Cumberbatch "Sherlock: His Last Vow"
Martin Freeman "Fargo"
Billy Bob Thornton "Fargo"
Christopher Plummer "Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight"
Rob Lowe "Killing Kennedy"
Chiwetel Ejiofor "Dancing on the Edge"
Matthew Goode "Dancing on the Edge"
Dominic West "Burton and Taylor"
Wendell Pierce "Treme"
Clark Peters "Treme"
Idris Elba "Luther"
Dominic Cooper "Fleming The Man Who Would Be Bond"
Larry David "Clear History"
Jeremy Irons "The Hollow Crown"
Tom Hiddleston "The Hollow Crown"
Ben Whishaw "The Hollow Crown"
Daniel Radcliffe "Young Doctor's Notebook"
Jon Hamm "Young Doctor's Notebook"
Dylan McDermott "Hostages"
Patrick J. Adams "Rosemary's Baby"
Emile Hirsch "Bonnie and Clyde"
Richard Madden "Klondike"

Commentary - A couple of months ago, this category was wrapped up and ready to go. With Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in the race, this was True Detective's to lose. And for the record, for the 4th Annual Awards Psychic Television Awards, they will continue to compete in this category because that is where an anthology series should be. But alas, HBO thought the wiser and has pushed it into the Drama categories. While it will still net them a ton of Emmys, there may not be as many wins due to the much stiffer competition. So now this race has opened up a bit, and new contenders are emerging. First up is Mark Ruffalo. While we still don't know the verdict on Ryan Murphy's film adaptation, if the final product has half the response of the stage production, it is certain to be a hit with Television Academy voters. Ruffalo is the emotional center of the film, and is an Oscar-nominated actor that is incredibly popular. Nipping at his heels are the guys of Fargo. Billy Bob Thornton has the flashier role, and is a certain nominee, but don't discount Martin Freeman who could easily be a double nominee this year. He may even go up against his Sherlock co-star Benedict Cumberbatch, who will definitely be nominated again, and unfortunately will probably lose again, a real shame if you ask me. Another hot ticket item this year will be Chiwetel Ejiofor for his role in Dancing on the Edge. He is now a bona fide star after his turn in 12 Years a Slave, and will be a hard name to pass up on a voting ballot. Christopher Plummer is a legend, Rob Lowe is a television favorite playing JFK, Dominic West plays Richard Burton, Idris Elba is a perennial, and names like Ben Whishaw, Jeremy Irons, Danielle Radcliffe, Larry David, and Jon Hamm are all on people's minds. Also, I would like to give a shout out to Wendell Pierce and Clark Peters in Treme. The show was constantly ignored in the Drama categories, but maybe they can finally get some deserved attention in this less-competitive race.

2014 Cannes Film Festival: David Cronenberg's Maps to the Stars and Tommy Lee Jones' The Homesman

Two big premieres landed at Cannes in the last couple of days that could have an impact on the upcoming Oscar race. The first was Tommy Lee Jones' latest directorial effort, which he also stars in opposite Hilary Swank, The Homesman. The reviews have been mostly pretty go so far, but there are some detractors. Some praise the focus on women, something most westerns simply do not do, while others complain about the pacing, and the overall effect. So the potential Oscar effect at this moment is a bit up in the air, but Swank is certainly in the mix, and the technical aspects could be in as well. Also remember that we have seen plenty of films premiere at Cannes to uncertain futures, only to rebound later (think Inglourious Basterds). So don't give up yet on The Homesman. Here are some sample reviews:

Peter Debruge at Variety complements Jones for his subtlety and surprise feminism:

"Unlike other actor-directors, Jones never seems to indulge excess on the part of his cast. Though the characters are strong, the performances are understated. Even the three ladies settle into a state of near-catatonia after awhile, rather than indulging their various “hysterias.” In the past, people have whispered about Jones’ attitudes toward women; with this film, he says a thing or two on the subject with a sensitivity that comes as a welcome surprise."

Full Review:

Todd McCarthy at The Hollywood Reporter was impressed with the final product:

"The rough lot handed to women in the Old West remains a footnote in the cinematic history of cowboy days, but it figures front and center in The Homesman. Tommy Lee Jones’ adaptation of the late Glendon Swarthout’s flavorful 1988 novel is both lyrical and shocking, weirdly funny and grimly serious. Fronted by fine and wise performances by Hilary Swank as a self-sufficient unmarried pioneer charged with transporting three insane women back East and by Jones himself as a shiftless claim-jumper obliged to help her, this beautifully crafted film intrigues as a story never told before and ratchets up dramatic interest through a succession of unexpected turns."

Full Review:

The other major debut is David Cronenberg's Maps to the Stars, whose first trailer was intriguing to say the least. Now I know that Cronenberg has never been popular with the Academy, sometimes deserving, other times not (I still can not get over the fact that A History of Violence missed out on so many nominations). This one will probably not inspire too many notices, but it looks to be a fascinating and hard-hitting look at modern-Hollywood culture.

Peter Bradshaw at The Guardian (UK) writes:

"David Cronenberg's new film here at Cannes is a gripping and exquisitely horrible movie about contemporary Hollywood – positively vivisectional in its sadism and scorn. It is twisted, twisty, and very far from all the predictable outsider platitudes about celebrity culture. The status-anxiety, fame-vertigo, sexual satiety and that all-encompassing fear of failure which poisons every triumph are displayed here with an icy new connoisseurship, a kind of extremism which faces down the traditional objection that films like this are secretly infatuated with their subject. Every surface has a sickly sheen of anxiety; every face is a mask of pain suppressed to the last millimetre. It is a further refinement of this director's gifts for body horror and satire."

Full Review:

Oliver Lyttelton at The Playlist at Indiewire writes:

"Real talk: it's been quite a while since David Cronenberg made something truly satisfying. "Cosmopolis" has a few defenders, "A Dangerous Method" not so much, and while there's stuff to like in "Spider," "A History Of Violence" and "Eastern Promises," all felt compromised to some degree or other. Indeed, the truly unfiltered Cronenberg picture, one where bits fall off people or people try to have sex with orifices not traditionally used for any sexual act, seems like something of a distant memory at this point...But good news is here, because the Canadian director's latest, "Maps To The Stars," just premiered at Cannes, and while it's substantially different from the "Videodrome"s and "Crash"es of the world, and probably rather more disposable, it's certainly the director's most twisted, and as a consequence, most deliciously entertaining film, in quite a long while."

Full Review:

Friday, May 16, 2014

The 80th Annual Drama League Award Winners

Gentleman's Guide to Murder, All the Way, The Glass Menagerie, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and Neil Patrick Harris continue to dominated, and have set themselves up as the front runners for the Tony Awards in a couple of weeks. For more information about the Drama League and their annual awards visit:

All The Way

A Gentleman’s Guide To Love And Murder

The Glass Menagerie

Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Neil Patrick Harris, Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Previously Announced Categories

Distinguished Achievement in Musical Theatre
Barbara Cook

Unique Contribution to the Theatre
Key Brand Entertainment/Broadway Across America: John Gore

Founders Award for Excellence in Directing
John Tiffany

Christopher Nolan's Interstellar - Full Trailer

This is one of my most anticipated films of the year, as Nolan rarely goes wrong, and the combined potency of Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Casey Affleck, Ellen Burstyn, and Nolan favorite Michael Caine is going to be hard to pass up. Let's just say that the trailer below gives me goosebumps.

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Actress in a TV Movie/Miniseries

2014 Contenders
Jessica Lange "American Horror Story: Coven"
Sarah Paulson "American Horror Story: Coven"
Cicely Tyson "The Trip to Bountiful"
Rebecca Ferguson "The White Queen"
Helena Bonham Carter "Burton and Taylor"
Zoe Saldana "Rosemary's Baby"
Khandi Alexander "Treme"
Toni Collette "Hostages"
Whoopi Goldberg "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"
Holliday Grainger "Bonnie and Clyde"
Kiernan Shipka "Flowers in the Attic"
Imani Hakim "The Gabby Douglas Story"
Carrie Underwood "The Sound of Music Live"
Minnie Driver "Return to Zero"
Kristen Wiig "The Spoils of Babylon"
Gina Gershon "House of Versace"
Mary-Louise Parker "Christmas in Conway"
Christina Ricci "Lizzie Borden Took an Axe"

Commentary - This year Sarah Paulson rightfully takes her place beside Jessica Lange as one of the leads of the American Horror Story franchise (honestly, she should have been nominated here last year). This year though, nothing is a given, and she is fighting for a slot among some tough competition. First there is Jessica Lange, who is always a threat for the win. The one I think we all need to watch for though is Cicely Tyson. She recently won a Tony for the same role in The Trip to Bountiful (the role that finally gave Geraldine Page her overdue Oscar in 1985). The role is pure awards bait and television critics and viewers ate up her performance. Plus it doesn't hurt that she is Cicely Tyson. She is an Emmy-winning legend, and is an acting force of nature. Other popular previous winners/nominees join the ranks this year. Whoopi Goldberg reminds us that she really is an actor first with her role in the overall mixed production A Day Late and a Dollar Short. Hostages was a disaster of an experiment for CBS, but it could still net the network an Emmy nod (kind of like Ashley Judd's nod a few years ago) for Toni Collette, who happens to be an Emmy-winning acting favorite. Two-time nominee Helena Bonham Carter returns to the movie/mini categories with her role as Elizabeth Taylor. The reviews were decent, and once again, she is a favorite among voters. Actors looking for their first nods include Khandi Alexander for the underrated Treme that was ignored when it competed in the Drama categories, but could find a footing here. Zoe Saldana is a bonafide movie star, but she could get her first major awards recognition on television with the reboot of the classic Rosemary's Baby. Of the bunch though, the one that has the best chance of emerging is Rebecca Ferguson who landed a Golden Globe nomination earlier this year for her role in The White Queen. Also watch out for Christina Ricci, Carrie Underwood (okay that one is probably a stretch), and Emmy favorite Mary-Louise Parker.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

2014 Contenders
Peter Dinklage "Game of Thrones"
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau "Game of Thrones"
Kit Harrington "Game of Thrones"
Aaron Paul "Breaking Bad"
Dean Norris "Breaking Bad"
Jon Voight "Ray Donovan"
Mandy Patinkin "Homeland"
Tracey Letts "Homeland"
F. Murray Abraham "Homeland"
Jim Carter "Downton Abbey"
Brendan Coyle "Downton Abbey"
Rob James-Collier "Downton Abbey"
Josh Charles "The Good Wife"
Alan Cumming "The Good Wife"
Matt Czurchy "The Good Wife"
Chris Noth "The Good Wife"
Michael Kelly "House of Cards"
Gerald McRaney "House of Cards"
Walton Goggins "Justified"
John Slattery "Mad Men"
Vincent Kartheiser "Mad Men"
Ben Feldman "Mad Men"
Sam Waterston "The Newsroom"
Dev Patel "The Newsroom"
Thomas Sadoski "The Newsroom"
John Gallagher Jr. "The Newsroom"
Jeffrey Wright "Boardwalk Empire"
Michael Kenneth Williams "Boardwalk Empire"
Noah Emmerich "The Americans"
Freddie Highmore "Bate's Motel"
Mads Mikkelsen "Hannibal"
Laurence Fishburne "Hannibal"
Michael Gaston "Turn"
Peter Krause "Parenthood"
Craig T. Nelson "Parenthood"
Alexander Ludwig "Vikings"
Clive Standen "Vikings"
David Morrissey "The Walking Dead"
Jeff Perry "Scandal"
Tony Goldwyn "Scandal"

Commentary - This past episode of Game of Thrones put Peter Dinklage in the spotlight, the result of which may earn Dinklage another Emmy. But after Emilia Clarke broke through last year, I wonder if maybe one of the other cast members, maybe Nikolaj Costar-Waldau or Kit Harrington, both of whom have had baity material this year. No matter what happens though, Dinklage is definitely one to watch for. And of course you cannot forget about Aaron Paul. He has won this category twice, and I'm sure most people are still lingering on the last half season of Breaking Bad. But he will face some internal competition from Dean Norris, who has the material this year to make a final breakthrough for the show. The only real stand alone here (meaning no internal competition) is Jon Voight. He won the Golden Globe this year because he's an Oscar-winning legend, and the HFPA are star whores. But he is also a respected veteran actor in a bright new role, so even the less star-hungry Television Academy could recognize his performance. Other than that it is best to look at the contenders grouped by their show. The Good Wife has had a resurgent season, and Josh Charles whose character had a shocking narrative this year, is sure to be given a second look. But I wonder if some of the other wonderful actors on the roster can get some love to. If Emmy voters are paying attention, then The Good Wife could surprise us all and clean up in the acting categories. Homeland got Mandy Patinkin in last year, but I just don't know if voters are going to embrace the show this year. They always seem to be slow to changes in terms of nominations, but the quality has dipped tremendously, and so it could drop out of nods significantly. Or it could continue to excel at least another year until Emmy voters finally wise up. Mad Men used to clean up in this category, but it looks like this might be a year where it completely missed the boat. Jim Carter got in again last year to much surprise, proving that Downton is still potent with older voters. We, as the blogging community, can continue to ignore him all we want to, but don't be surprised if he (or the other co-star submitted, not sure yet which one they'll pick) continues to be recognized. Finally, don't discount the guys from Boardwalk Empire (Bobby Cannavale even won last year as Boardwalk did much better than expected), The Newsroom, Hannibal, Scandal, Parenthood, House of Cards, oh and Walton Goggins for Justified or Freddie Highnmore for Bates' Motel (turns out there were more stand alone contenders).

2014 Cannes Film Festival: Mike Leigh's Passion Project Mr. Turner Lands

I now know that if a Mike Leigh film lands, and it gets good reviews (which they almost always do), it is going to be in the Oscar race. Even Another Year, which seemed to have completely slipped off the radar a couple of years ago, managed to score a Best Original Screenplay nomination, seemingly out of nowhere. Well, it looks like he has another winner on his hands. The initial reviews after its Cannes premiere range from likability to raves, but either way it looks like it will definitely be a major part of the conversation heading into the upcoming Oscar season. The one I will be looking for down the line is not Leigh, but the lead Timothy Spall. He too is receiving a lot of major buzz, and has been a dedicated British character actor for a long time. The Best Actor race is usually brutal, so it may just be a pipe dream. But Mr. Turner might finally be the film that gets Spall some much overdue praise and awards glory. Check out some of the review snippets below, complete with links to the full reviews:

Peter Bradshaw at The Guardian (UK) was one of those raves:

"What a glorious film this is, richly and immediately enjoyable, hitting its satisfying stride straight away. It's funny and visually immaculate; it combines domestic intimacy with an epic sweep and has a lyrical, mysterious quality that perfumes every scene, whether tragic or comic."

Full Review:

Scott Foundas at Variety writes:

"” Leigh has made another highly personal study of art, commerce and the glacial progress of establishment tastes, built around a lead performance from longtime Leigh collaborator Timothy Spall that’s as majestic as one of Turner’s own swirling sunsets. A natural awards contender across multiple categories."

Full Review:

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The 64th Annual Outer Critics Circle Award Winners

The wins for All the Way, Cranston, Gentleman's Guide to Murder, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Mare Winningham, Cherry Jones/Audra McDonald could foreshadow the Tony Awards, which are now less than a month away!

“All the Way”

“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder”

“The Explorer’s Club”

“Fun Home”

Robert L. Freedman, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder”

OUTSTANDING NEW SCORE – The Marjorie Gunner Award
Jason Robert Brown, “The Bridges of Madison County”

“The Glass Menagerie”

“Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

Tim Carroll, “Twelfth Night”

Darko Tresnjak, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder”

Bryan Cranston, “All the Way”

Cherry Jones, “The Glass Menagerie”

Jefferson Mays, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder”

Audra McDonald, “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill”

Brian J. Smith, “The Glass Menagerie”

(TIE) Andrea Martin, “Act One” and Mare Winningham, “Casa Valentina”

Nick Cordero, “Bullets Over Broadway”

Marin Mazzie, “Bullets Over Broadway”

John Douglas Thompson, “Satchmo at the Waldorf”

Warren Carlyle, “After Midnight”

Christopher Barreca, “Rocky”

William Ivey Long, “Bullets Over Broadway”

Kevin Adams, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

(TIE) Eric Dufault, “Year of the Rooster”; Madeleine George, “The (Curious Case of the) Watson Intelligence”; Steven Levenson, “The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin”

Sunday, May 11, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders - Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

2014 Contenders
Anna Gunn "Breaking Bad"
Maggie Smith "Downton Abbey"
Emilia Clarke "Game of Thrones"
Michelle Monaghan "True Detective"
Christina Hendricks "Mad Men"
Christine Baranski "The Good Wife"
Archie Panjabi "The Good Wife"
Morena Baccarin "Homeland"
Joanne Froggatt "Downton Abbey"
Elizabeth McGovern "Downton Abbey"
Monica Potter "Parenthood"
Mae Whitman "Parenthood"
Lauren Graham "Parenthood"
Bonnie Bedalia "Parenthood"
Erika Christensen "Parenthood"
Betsy Brandt "Breaking Bad"
Laura Fraser "Breaking Bad"
Lena Heady "Game of Thrones"
Maisie Williams "Game of Thrones"
Sophie Turner "Game of Thrones"
Bellamy Young "Scandal"
Jennifer Carpenter "Dexter"
Alison Pill "The Newsroom"
Emily Mortimer "The Newsroom"
Olivia Munn "The Newsroom"
Hayden Panettiere "Nashville"
January Jones "Mad Men"
Kiernan Shipka "Mad Men"
Jessica Pare "Mad Men"
Melissa McBride "The Walking Dead"
Caitlin Fitzgerald "Masters of Sex"
Gretchen Mol "Boardwalk Empire"
Kelly MacDonald "Boardwalk Empire"

Commentary - While other categories are looking at some turnover, there is a good chance that this category is filled out with past contenders. Christina Hendricks has managed to never win this award, but my guess is that she will continue to be nominated by an Academy that clearly loves her character. Anna Gunn beat out the great Dame last year, and deservedly won her first Emmy Award. The big question on most people's minds is whether, despite months since its finale, Breaking Bad is still as potent of a contender as it was when it took the top prize last year. I think that in terms of another nomination Gunn is a lock no matter what. One of the best surprises of last year's nominations was the inclusion of Emilia Clarke for her simply bad-ass role in Game of Thrones. The series only continues to get better and more popular. Now that she has broken the barrier, expect her to be a perennial in this category. The Good Wife has had a renewed energy this season, so expect favorite Christine Baranski to once again get into the top six. But I wonder if there is enough heat to bring back in Archie Panjabi this year. She did win for this role, so it is not out of the realm of possibility. Finally, there is Maggie Smith. I think that pretty much sums up that. The one nominee from last year that is in trouble is Morena Baccarin. Homeland in general is in trouble as the ratings and love for the show tumbled this season. We all know that the Television Academy is slow to respond to such changes, and if Homeland is still high on their list then Baccarin is a strong contender. If they do respond to the dip in quality then she is big trouble. So the question is then, who gets that sixth slot if Baccarin is out? Joanna Froggatt had a baity story line on the fourth season of Downton, and Elizabeth McGovern is a big name, so both are certainly on the radar. The girls from Mad Men, Game of Thrones, and Breaking Bad hope to join the fight alongside their co-stars Gunn, Clarke and Hendricks. Hayden Panettiere looks to turn her second Golden Globe nomination into an Emmy nomination, Melissa McBride had a standout season on The Walking Dead, and my personal favorite Bellamy Young from the delicious Scandal could persuade a few voters to put her name on the ballot. The cast I am most interested in though is Parenthood. After Monica Potter was outrageously snubbed last year, I had lost all hope for the show. But they had a full season this year, were just recently renewed for a final season, and you can never discount surprises at the Emmys. Maybe this is the year they finally do the right thing and honor not just Potter, but any or all of these incredible actresses.

Friday, May 9, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Supporting Actor in a TV Movie/Miniseries

2014 Contenders
Matt Bomer "The Normal Heart"
Jim Parsons "The Normal Heart"
Alfred Molina "The Normal Heart"
Taylor Kitsch "The Normal Heart"
Joe Mantello "The Normal Heart"
Jonathan Groff "The Normal Heart"
John Goodman "Dancing on the Edge"
Martin Freeman "Sherlock: His Last Vow"
Blair Underwood "The Trip to Bountiful"
Colin Hanks "Fargo"
Keith Carradine "Fargo"
Oliver Platt "Fargo"
Frank Langella "Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight"
Danny Glover "Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight"
Denis O'Hare "American Horror Story: Coven"
Danny Huston "American Horror Story: Coven"
Evan Peters "American Horror Story: Coven"
Sam Shepard "Klondike"
William Hurt "Bonnie and Clyde"
Jon Hamm "Clear History"
Bill Hader "Clear History"
Michael Keaton "Clear History"
Tim Robbins "The Spoils of Babylon"
Will Ferrell "The Spoils of Babylon"
Jason Isaacs "Rosemary's Baby"
Ving Rhames "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"
Mekhi Phifer "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"

Commentary - In an interesting twist this year both the TV Movie/Miniseries supporting races this year feature casts that could literally sweep the nominations. For Supporting Actress (as previously mentioned) it is the cast of American Horror Story: Coven. In this race it is the extremely deep cast of The Normal Heart which threatens to make an incredible impact on the nominations. While we will not know for a few weeks the quality of the final product, it does look like the performances (based on the play and early buzz) of Jim Parsons and Matt Bomer are the early front runners. But do not discount stage veterans Joe Mantello and Jonathan Groff, acting favorite Alfred Molina, or young star Taylor Kitsch. Beyond this cast, there are a plethora of picks, including many veterans. Emmy-winner John Goodman for his scene-stealing turn in Dancing on the Edge. Martin Freeman returns here, and could pull off a win, as a prize for both his role in Sherlock and for his role in Fargo, which could make him a double nominee this year. Speaking of Fargo, Colin Hanks and Keith Carradine are sure to be in the conversation. Blair Underwood deserves a nomination for his role in The Trip to Bountiful. Anybody that can hold their own against Cicely Tyson is worthy of recognition. While the women of AHS: Coven are going to clean up this year, the men might not be so lucky. Evan Peters and Denis O'Hare, both veterans of the show, also have unfortunate story lines this year where neither get to talk. While Jean Dujardin winning an Oscar for The Artist proved that even silent roles can win awards, I just don't see it happening this time. But Danny Huston could be a dark horse, as his scenes with Jessica Lange certainly gave this season some fireworks. Also in the running are Frank Langella and Danny Glover for Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight, William Hurt in Bonnie and Clyde, and the guys from Clear History, The Spoils of Babylon, and A Day Late and a Dollar Short.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

2014 American Comedy Award Winners

Best Comedy Film - This is the End
Best Actress in a Film - Melissa McCarthy "The Heat"
Best Actor in a Film - Will Ferrell "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues"
Best Director - Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg "This is the End"
Best Screenplay - Kate Dippold "The Heat"
Best Television Series - Parks & Recreation
Best Alternative Comedy Series - Key and Peele
Best Late Night Talk Show - (TIE) The Colbert Report and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Television Series - Parks & Recreation
Best Actress in a Television Series - Amy Poehler "Parks & Recreation"
Best Supporting Actor in a Television Series - Bill Hader "Saturday Night Live"
Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series - Kate McKinnon "Saturday Night Live"
Best Television Directing - Peter Atencio "Key and Peele"
Best Television Writing - Modern Family
Best Comedy Special - Louis C.K.: Oh My God
Club Comic - Maria Bamford
Concert Comic - Jim Gaffigan
Best Viral Video - Bad Lip Reading: NFL
Johnny Carson Lifetime Achievement Award - Bill Cosby

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Supporting Actress in a TV Movie/Miniseries

2014 Contenders
Julia Roberts "The Normal Heart"
Kathy Bates "American Horror Story: Coven"
Angela Bassett "American Horror Story: Coven"
Frances Conroy "American Horror Story: Coven"
Lily Rabe "American Horror Story: Coven"
Gabourey Sidibe "American Horror Story: Coven"
Emma Roberts "American Horror Story: Coven"
Taissa Farmiga "American Horror Story: Coven"
Jamie Brewer "American Horror Story: Coven"
Ellen Burstyn "Flowers in the Attic"
Jacqueline Bisset "Dancing on the Edge"
Allison Tolman "Fargo"
Kate Walsh "Fargo"
Janet McTeer "The White Queen"
Audra McDonald "The Sound of Music"
Laura Benati "The Sound of Music"
Kimberly Elise "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"
Tichina Arnold "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"
Anika Noni Rose "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"
Vanessa Williams "The Trip to Bountiful"
Keke Palmer "The Trip to Bountiful"
Minka Kelly "Full Circle"
Kate Walsh "Full Circle"
S. Epatha Merkerson "Gabby Douglas Story"
Regina King "Gabby Douglas Story"
Kathy Baker "Return to Zero"
Kate Hudson "Clear History"
Holly Hunter "Bonnie and Clyde"
Sarah Hyland "Bonnie and Clyde"
Ruth Wilson "Luther"
Melissa Leo "Treme"
Carole Bouquet "Rosemary's Baby"

Commentary - American Horror Story may have shot itself in the foot. Even with Sarah Paulson moving up to lead (which might really work out for her), there are eight women fighting for what will most likely be two, maybe three at most spots, and even two will be hard with so much competition. I think of the bunch Kathy Bates is a lock. She has a incredibly meaty role, and even though she has only won one Emmy in her long television career, she is always a safe bet for a nomination. Right behind Bates is probably Angela Bassett. She only has one Emmy nomination, but she gets to chew scenery and scheme against Kathy Bates. Also look out for AHS alums Conroy and Rabe, and young talents Sidibe and Roberts, but among them it is hard to see who will emerge as the solid third contender. Once you get beyond the impressive array of actress in the third chapter of the AHS saga, you begin to see the depth of this category. Right at the top of the list is Julia Roberts, who is teaming up with Ryan Murphy (whose productions could sweep this category if they wanted to) in the adaptation of the classic play The Normal Heart. Roberts (who could go up against her niece Emma). Up until recently she had been out of the awards game for awhile, but her Oscar nod this year for August: Osage County proved she is still beloved within the industry. Last year Ellen Burstyn won another Emmy for her role in Political Animals. While she certainly was a scene-stealer, I am personally still reeling from Sarah Paulson's loss. She returns this year for Flowers in the Attic. I don't think she'll win back to back here, but a nomination is certainly in the mix. Jacqueline Bisset made quite a scene at this year's Globes with her, let's just say, interesting speech, but her performance is pretty good, and she is a Hollywood legend at this point. Emmy voters could invite her to the party just to see what she'll say next. Also in line for a nod is Oscar nominee Janet McTeer. The White Queen is a big period production piece and McTeer, who is clearly respected in acting circles, has a lot to chew on. Now that there are six nominees in these acting categories, this opens it up more for surprises. Allison Tolman and Kate Walsh have a lot of great scenes in the reboot of Fargo. While The Sound of Music Live! was pretty, well awful, Audra McDonald singing usually equals major awards (she may get another Tony this year to add to her collection). The Trip to Bountiful was fantastic (and will probably earn Cicely Tyson another Emmy), but if they really like it, watch out for supporting players Vanessa Williams and Keke Palmer. Less well-received was A Day Late and a Dollar Short, but names like Kimberly Elise, Tichina Arnold, and Anika Noni Rose are worth a second glance. Also watch out for Holly Hunter in Bonnie and Clyde, Regina King and S. Epatha Merkerson in the Gabby Douglas Story, last year's Emmy-winner Melissa Leo for the reduced-episode final season of HBO's Treme, and Kate Hudson in HBO's Clear History.

Monday, May 5, 2014

2014 Lucille Lortel Award Winners

The Lucille Lortel Awards honor Off-Broadway productions. The full list of winners is below:

Outstanding Play - The Open House
Outstanding Musical - Fun Home
Outstanding Revival - Good Person of Szechwan
Outstanding Solo Show - Buyer and Cellar
Outstanding Director - Alex Timbers "Here Lies Love"
Outstanding Choreographer - Sonya Tayeh "Kung Fu"
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play - Steven Boyer "Hand to God"
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play - Tracee Chimo "Bad Jews"
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical - Michael Cerveris "Fun Home"
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical - Ruthie Ann Miles "Here Lies Love"
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play - Jeremy Shamos "Dinner With Friends"
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play -  Lisa Kron "Good Person of Sczechwan"
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical - Lucas Steele "Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812"
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical - Judy Kuhn "Fun Home"
Outstanding Scenic Design - Mimi Lien "Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812"
Outstanding Costume Design - (TIE) Clint Ramos "Here Lies Love" and Paloma Young "Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812"
Outstanding Lighting Design - Justin Townsend "Here Lies Love"
Outstanding Sound Design - M.L. Dogg and Cody Spencer "Here Lies Love"
Lifetime Achievement Award - Robyn Goodman
Playwrights Sidewalk Inductee - Richard Nelson

Saturday, May 3, 2014

2014 Emmy Nominations: Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

2014 Contenders
Ty Burrell "Modern Family"
Ed O'Neill "Modern Family"
Eric Stonestreet "Modern Family"
Jesse Tyler Ferguson "Modern Family"
Tony Hale "Veep"
Adam Driver "Girls"
Andre Braugher "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
James Wolk "The Crazy Ones"
Hamish Linklater "The Crazy Ones"
Taran Killam "SNL"
Bobby Moynihan "SNL"
Jay Pharoah "SNL"
Bradley Whitford "Trophy Wife"
Neil Patrick Harris "How I Met Your Mother"
Fred Willard "Family Tree"
Christopher Guest "Family Tree"
Ed Begley Jr. "Family Tree"
Timothy Simons "Veep"
Matt Walsh "Veep"
Reid Scott "Veep"
Kevin Dunn "Veep"
Simon Helberg "The Big Bang Theory"
Kunal Nayyar "The Big Bang Theory"
Max Greenfield "New Girl"
Lamorne Morris "New Girl"
Damon Wayans Jr. "New Girl"
Chris Colfer "Glee"
Darren Criss "Glee"
Chord Overstreet "Glee"
Aziz Ansari "Parks & Recreation"
Nick Offerman "Parks & Recreation"
Chris Pratt "Parks & Recreation"
Jon Daly "Betas"
Karan Soni "Betas"
Beau Bridges "The Millers"
Terry Crews "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Joe Lo Truglio "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Pablo Schreiber "Orange is the New Black"
Keegan Michael Key "Key and Peele"
Christopher Michael Welch "Silicon Valley"
Zach Woods "Silicon Valley"
T.J. Miller "Silicon Valley"
Michael Richards "Kirstie"

Commentary - Last year, it wasn't a surprise that only three of the Modern Family quartet made the cut, as the competition got stiff, and the show showed its age, it seemed inevitable. But I don't think anybody thought it would be Eric Stonestreet, and honestly, it makes this year even more difficult to predict. Which of the four make it in? Do all of them come back in full force? Is Stonestreet cut this year, or is it one of his co-stars? I'll be honest, with a few exceptions, there are not a lot of newer contenders vying for these six slots, so a lot of it will come down to which of the old favorites gets into the mix. The one new contender to the race that you should be very worried about (if you were one of the guys on this list) is Andre Braugher. I actually think that Terry Crews and Jo Lo Truglio have more range in the show, but no one can deny that Braugher's deadpan serves as a perfect foil for Samberg's ridiculousness, and let's not forget this is Andre Braugher we are talking about. He pulled off several miracles with his nods for Men of a Certain Age, and is clearly beloved by the Television Academy, and he is a serious threat here. But besides him most of the major players here are previous contenders. Tony Hale pulled off a feat last year when he won this award, and if Season 3 is indication, the writers of Veep have realized how important their supporting cast is, as most of them are getting some great screen time this year. As Veep rises, Hale remains a top threat for the prize. Adam Driver got in last year for Girls, even though it went through a bit of a sophomore slump. Reviews for Season 3 seemed much stronger, and he has a high-profile role coming up in the new Star Wars film, so he will definitely be on voters' radars. From this point, it starts to be less individualized and more of a grouping. There are some great supporting casts from shows like Veep (besides Hale), Glee, New Girl, Parks & Recreation, Brooklyn Nine-Nine (besides Braugher), Silicon Valley, The Big Bang Theory, Family Tree, Betas, and Saturday Night Live. The question is, among these sets of contenders, will any of them emerge? Will Nick Offerman or Simon Helberg, both previous contenders who failed to make the cut, do so this time around? Will previous nominees like Neil Patrick Harris, Chris Colfer, or Max Greenfield launch a comeback? Right now there are so many questions, and a lot depends on how the season finales shake down. But I will say this, the exclusion last year of two-time winner Stonestreet is proof that this can be a fluid category, and that you should always keep your eyes opened for a spoiler.

Friday, May 2, 2014

2014 Emmy Contenders: Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

2014 Contenders
Julie Bowen "Modern Family"
Sofia Vergara "Modern Family"
Allison Janney "Mom"
Mayim Bialik "The Big Bang Theory"
Merritt Wever "Nurse Jackie"
Jane Lynch "Glee"
Anna Chlumsky "Veep"
Kaley Cuoco "The Big Bang Theory"
Melissa Rauch "The Big Bang Theory"
Margo Martindale "The Millers"
Kate Mulgrew "Orange is the New Black"
Laura Prepon "Orange is the New Black"
Chelsea Perretti "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Allison Williams "Girls"
Zosia Mamet "Girls"
Betty White "Hot in Cleveland"
Rhea Perlman "Kirstie"
Cloris Leachman "Raising Hope"
Susan Lucci "Devious Maids"
Linda Lavin "Sean Saves the World"
Aidy Bryant "SNL"
Cecily Strong "SNL"
Kate McKinnon "SNL"
Vanessa Bayer "SNL"
Nasim Pedrad "SNL"
Amy Schumer "Inside Amy Schumer"
Kaitlin Olsen "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia"
Alex Borstein "Getting On"
Niecy Nash "Getting On"
Crisin Milloti "How I Met Your Mother"
Alyson Hannigan "How I Met Your Mother"
Aubrey Plaza "Parks & Recreation"
Retta "Parks & Recreation"
Allison Brie "Community"
Eden Sher "The Middle"
Kristen Bell "House of Lies"
Stephanie Beatriz "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Melissa Fumero "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Sufe Bradshaw "Veep"

Commentary - With Jane Krakowski exiting the race, it would seem like the six other women nominated last year would gracefully move into this year's race without much interruption. But there will most likely be a huge interruption in the former of Allison Janney. Whatever you think of Mom (I think it is better than most people give it credit), no one can deny the power of Janney on that show. She steals every scene she is in, has a plethora of episodes to choose from if she is nominated, and it doesn't hurt that she already has a butt load of Emmys on her mantle for her iconic role as C.J. in The West Wing. Since I highly doubt there will be seven nominations two years in a row, who does she bump out? Modern Family, despite public fatigue, is still extremely popular, and it is actually having a better season this year, so I expect Vergara and Bowen will be back. Also expect Mayim Bialik, who got a coveted SAG nod this year (remember they combine lead and supporting) to return. Merritt Wever surprised all of last year with her win, but remember, they have snubbed recent winners before, and this category has enough tough contenders that she is a not a lock to come back. Anna Chlumsky has already had more screen time this season as Veep moves more toward an ensemble piece. As that show continues to rise, I expect its cast to continue to get more nominations. But once again, in a tough race, she is not a guarantee. The other nominee from last year fighting to get back in is Jane Lynch. After a year of missing out, she was certainly a surprise nominee. But this year, she has had more story lines, more screen time, and her recent appearance in New York for Rachel's opening night of Funny Girl was a surprisingly deep and well-acted episode that put a lot of spotlight on Lynch's talent, including her singing talent. But Glee is sliding in the ratings, and if it didn't already have a renewal, it wouldn't have gotten one and despite a surge last year, I don't know if Emmy voters are still paying attention. If they are though, then don't be surprised if her name shows up. So this is an open and shut case then? Seven women, six slots, somebody great loses out? Not necessarily. This is an extremely deep category in terms of contenders, and so it is best we take a look at some other possibilities. The Emmys are always throwing us surprises, right? The first place to look is the slew of veteran contenders in contention this year. Now let's be honest, The Millers, Sean Saves the World, Kirstie, Hot in Cleveland, Devious Maids, and Raising Hope are not the greatest shows on television (although I will say that Raising Hope was hopelessly underrated). But if you take away those show titles and simply say the names: Margo Martindale, Linda Lavin, Rhea Perlman, Betty While, Susan Lucci, and Cloris Leachman, you have a very different reaction. Always look for veterans at the Emmys, because if they like you, they tend to circle back to you. There are always the girls of Girls, and Adam Driver's nod last year proved they do pay attention beyond Lena Dunham. SNL has had a bit of a tough time transitioning this season with all of the new characters, but the women of the show have outdone themselves, my personal favorite being Kate McKinnon. Also in the running, the supporting players of Orange is the New Black, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Veep, Community, Parks & Recreation, and Amy Schumer.