Tuesday, March 31, 2015

2015 Daytime Emmy Nominations

For a full list, including all of the tech nominations go to www.emmyonline.com

Best Drama Series
The Bold and the Beautiful
Days of Our Lives
General Hospital
The Young and the Restless

Best Actress in a Drama Series
Peggy McCay "Days of Our Lives"
Alison Sweeney "Days of Our Lives"
Gina Tognoni "The Young and the Restless"
Maura West "General Hospital"
Lauren Wright "General Hospital"

Best Actor in a Drama Series
Anthony Geary "General Hospital"
Christian LeBlanc "The Young and the Restless"
Billy Miller "The Young and the Restless"
Jason Thompson "General Hospital"

Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Scott Clifton "The Bold and the Beautiful"
Chad Duell "Days of Our Lives"
Kristoff St. John "The Young and the Restless"
Jacob Young "The Bold and the Beautiful"

Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Linsey Godfrey "The Bold and the Beautiful"
Amelia Heinle "The Young and the Restless"
Elizabeth Hendrickson "The Young and the Restless"
Finola Hughes "General Hospital"
Lisa Locicero "General Hospital"

Best Younger Actress in a Drama Series
Kristen Alderson "General Hospital"
Camila Banus "Days of Our Lives"
Hunter King "The Young and the Restless"
Haley Pullos "General Hospital"

Best Younger Actor in a Drama Series
Bryan Craig "General Hospital"
Max Ehrich "The Young and the Restless"
Tequan Richmond "General Hospital"
Freddie Smith "Days of Our Lives"

Best Special Guest Performer in a Drama Series
Meredith Baxter "The Young and the Restless"
Sally Kellerman "The Young and the Restless"
Donna Mills "General Hospital"
Linda Elena Tovar "General Hospital"
Fred Willard "The Bold and the Beautiful"
Ray Wise "The Young and the Restless"

Best Writing Team - Drama Series
The Bold and the Beautiful
Days of Our Lives
General Hospital
The Young and the Restless

Best Directing Team - Drama Series
The Bold and the Beautiful
Days of Our Lives
General Hospital
The Young and the Restless

Best Culinary Program
Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics
Guy's Big Bite
Martha Bakes
The Mind of a Chef
My Grandmother's Ravioli

Best Game Show
Family Feud
The Price is Right

Best Legal/Courtroom Program
Divorce Court
Judge Judy
The People's Court

Best Lifestyle Program
Flea Market Flip
Home Made Simple
This Old House

Best Travel Program
Born to Explore with Richard Wiese
Curious Traveler
Rock the Park
Tapping In: The Happiest People and Places on the Planet

Best Morning Program
CBS Sunday Morning
Good Morning America
The Today Show

Best Talk Show - Informative
The Chew
The Dr. Oz Show
The Kitchen
Steve Harvey

Best Talk Show - Entertainment
The Ellen DeGeneres Show
Live! With Kelly and Michael
The Talk
The Wendy Williams Show

Best Entertainment News Program
Access Hollywood
E! News
Entertainment Tonight
The Insider

Best Culinary Host
Danny Boome "Good Food America"
Ina Garten "Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics"
Bobby Flay "Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction"
Edward Lee and Magnus Nilsson "The Mind of Chef"
Martha Stewart "Martha Bakes"

Best Game Show Host
Craig Ferguson "Celebrity Name Game"
Steve Harvey "Family Feud"
Todd Newton "Family Game Night"
Pat Sajak "Wheel of Fortune"

Best Lifestyle/Travel/Children's Series Host
Jonathan Bird "Jonathan Bird's Blue World"
Jeff Corwin "Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin"
Philippe Cousteau "XPloration Awesome Planet"
Brandon McMillan "Lucky Dog"
Richard Wiese "Born to Explore with Richard Wiese"

Best Informative Talk Show Host
Mario Batali, Carla Hall, Clinton Kelly, Daphne Oz, and Michael Symon "The Chew"
Dr. Mehmet Oz "The Dr. Oz Show"
Steve Harvey "Steve Harvey"

Best Entertainment Talk Show Host
Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan "Live! With Kelly and Michael"
Julie Chen, Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne, Aisha Tyler, and Sheryl Underwood "The Talk"
Wendy Williams "The Wendy Williams Show"

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Director

First 2016 Predictions
Steven Spielberg "Bridge of Spies"
Todd Haynes "Carol"
Quentin Tarantino "The Hateful Eight"
David O. Russell "Joy"
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu "The Revenant"

Other Contenders - Danny Boyle "Steve Jobs", Gus Van Sant "The Sea of Trees", David Gordon Green "Our Brand is Crisis", Tom Hooper "The Danish Girl", Woody Allen "Irrational Man", Ron Howard "In the Heart of the Sea", John Crowley "Brooklyn", Judd Apatow "Trainwreck", Richard Linklater "That's What I'm Talking About", Alfonso Gomez-Rejon "Me and Earl and the Dying Girl", Brad Bird "Tomorrowland", Angelina Jolie "By the Sea", Jeff Nichols "Midnight Special", Cary Fukunaga "Beasts of No Nation", Jean-Marc Vallee "Demolition", Oliver Stone "Snowden", J.J. Abrams "Star Wars: The Force Awakens", Ridley Scott "The Martian", Cameron Crowe "Aloha", Robert Zemeckis "The Walk", Jonathan Demme "Ricki and the Flash", Michael Grandage "Genius", Courtney Hunt "The Whole Truth", Jodie Foster "Money Monster", Peter Sohn "The Good Dinosaur", Peter Docter "Inside Out", Antoine Fuqua "Southpaw", Paul Weitz "Grandma", Sarah Gavron "Suffragette", Paul Feig "Spy", James Vanderbilt "Truth", Peter Sollett "Freeheld", Thomas McCarthy "Spotlight", Andrew Haigh "45 Years", Don Cheadle "Miles Ahead", Denis Villeneuve "Sicario", Justin Kurzel "Macbeth", Matthew Vaughn "Kingsman: The Secret Service", John Madden "The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel", Kenneth Branagh "Cinderella", Joss Whedon "Avengers: Age of Ultron", Elizabeth Banks "Pitch Perfect 2", Joe Wright "Pan", Scott Cooper "Black Mass", Billy Ray "The Secret In Their Eyes", Francis Lawrence "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1"

Commentary - Can Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu win back to back Oscars for Best Director? History suggests that that is probably not going to happen. But his latest, The Revenant, has Oscar buzz written all over it, and he is very popular in voters minds right now after the success of Birdman. Steven Spielberg could win that elusive third Oscar with Bridge of Spies. He teams up again with Tom Hanks, and adds a dose of Cold War drama and a stellar cast. I am pretty sure that Quentin Tarantino was on the verge of a nomination for Django Unchained, but it just couldn't quite fully recover from its initial bungling (although two Oscars is a pretty good recovery). My guess is that Harvey learned his lesson, and will get the ball rolling early this time around with The Hateful Eight. And if it is as good as pretty much every other Tarantino movie, he will definitely be in the conversation. David O. Russell is bound to win an Oscar someday, if he keeps up the quality of work we have seen with his last three films, all of which have earned him a nomination in this category. Joy brings back the dynamic duo of Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper, and looks fantastic on paper. In the final slot, I am going for Todd Haynes. Far From Heaven was an underrated masterpiece, and Carol looks like it could be one of this year's best. But he and his competitors will have some stiff competition. Woody Allen could return to form with Irrational Man, Ron Howard's film has moved into prime Oscar spot and is pure Oscar bait on paper, and Gus Van Sant's The Sea of Trees could be another worthy effort. Danny Boyle has a great cast and script with Steve Jobs, David Gordon Green has a potential dark horse with Our Brand is Crisis, and Richard Linklater hopes to return to the race with That's What I'm Talking About. Angelina Jolie hopes voters forget that Unbroken was kind of a dud, Oliver Stone is looking for his first Oscar hit in decades with Snowden, Cameron Crowe looks to rekindle his early magic with Aloha, and names like Ridley Scott and Robert Zemeckis, should never be discounted. There are some indies also looking to making a splash. Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and John Crowley have huge Sundance hits on their hands. Jeff Nichols and Cary Fukunaga both have baity projects, and I would watch out for Jean-Marc Vallee, Jonathan Demme, Sarah Gavron, Don Cheadle, Thomas McCarthy, and Denis Villeneuve to also make the indie rounds this year. And do not forget about the big guys. J.J. Abrams, Matthew Vaughn, Joss Whedon, Kenneth Branagh, Joe Wright all have big genre projects hoping to breakthrough. Comedies have some big names with Judd Apatow, Elizabeth Banks, and Paul Feig aiming to for some recognition, and no list would be complete without the animated guys, who are largely, and unjustly looked over year after year. Here's to hoping that if The Good Dinosaur and Inside Out are as fantastic as they look then Pete Docter and Peter Sohn get at least a second look by voters .

Monday, March 30, 2015

2015 Jameson Empire Award Winners

Best Film

Best Director
Christopher Nolan "Interstellar"

Best Actor
Andy Serkis "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes"

Best Actress
Rosamund Pike "Gone Girl"

Best British Film
Kingsman: The Secret Service

Best Thriller
The Imitation Game

Best Comedy

Best Horror
The Babadook

Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy
X-Men: Days of Future Past

Best Female Newcomer
Karen Gillan "Guardians of the Galaxy" and "Oculus"

Best Male Newcomer
Taron Egerton "Kingsman: The Secret Service"

Empire Inspiration
Christopher Nolan

Empire Hero
Game of Thrones

Empire Legend
Ralph Fiennes

2015 iHeartRadio Music Award Winners

Artist of the Year
Taylor Swift

Song of the Year
Taylor Swift "Shake It Off"

Best Collaboration
Jessie J, Ariana Grande, and Nicki Minaj "Bang Bang"

Best New Artist
Sam Smith

Country Song of the Year
Jason Aldean "Burnin' It Down"

Hip-Hop/R&B Song of the Year
Jeremih feat. YG "Don't Tell Em"

Dance Song of the Year
Calvin Harris "Summer"

Alternative Rock Song of the Year
Hozier "Take Me to Church"

Best Lyrics
Taylor Swift "Blank Space"

Best Fan Army
5 Seconds of Summer - 5SOSFAM

Renegade Award
Brantley Gilbert

2015 iHeartRadio Innovator Award
Justin Timberlake

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Paul Feig and Melissa McCarthy Team Up Again for Spy

So I will admit that this one was not on my radar (and yes the trailer has been out for two months and I am just now posting it), but I ran across some early reviews, and they were nothing short of raves. Of course that makes sense. Paul Feig teaming up again with Melissa McCarthy and Rose Byrne, throw in a dash of Jude Law and Allison Janney, and you are guaranteed at least an entertaining experience. The question I have is this: can it pull a Bridesmaids? If the reviews continue to be as good as the first dozen or so, and the box office is great (which I'm sure it will be), then yes, I think it can be that comedy that once again breaks through the awards barrier. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Actress

First 2016 Predictions
Cate Blanchett "Carol"
Sandra Bullock "Our Brand is Crisis"
Jennifer Lawrence "Joy"
Emma Stone "Irrational Man"
Meryl Streep "Ricki and the Flash"

Other Contenders - Saoirse Ronan "Brooklyn", Lily Tomlin "Grandma", Rooney Mara "Carol", Charlotte Rampling "45 Years", Amy Schumer "Trainwreck", Melissa McCarthy "Spy", Carey Mulligan "Suffragette", Carey Mulligan "Far From the Maddening Crowd", Sally Field "Hello, My Name is Doris", Naomi Watts "Demolition", Angelina Jolie "By the Sea", Jessica Chastain "The Martian", Marion Cotillard "Macbeth", Emma Watson "Regression", Alicia Vikander "The Danish Girl", Alicia Vikander "The Light Between Oceans", Alicia Vikander "Tulip Fever", Margot Robbie "Z for Zachariah", Maggie Smith "The Lady in the Van", Rachel McAdams "Spotlight", Tilda Swinton "A Bigger Splash", Carmen Ejogo "Born to Be Blue", Brie Larson "Room", Nicole Kidman "Genius", Blythe Danner "I'll See You In My Dreams", Gugu Mbatha-Raw "The Whole Truth", Charlize Theron "The Last Face", Drew Barrymore "Miss You Already", Anna Kendrick "The Last Five Years", Anna Kendrick "Pitch Perfect 2", Greta Gerwig "Mistress America", Cate Blanchett "Knight of Cups", Juliette Binoche "Clouds of Sils Maria", Michelle Williams "Suite Francaise", Nicole Kidman "The Secret In their Eyes", Ellen Page "Freeheld", Emily Blunt "Sicario", Jennifer Lopez "Lila & Eve", Viola Davis "Lila & Eve", Lily James "Cinderella", Judi Dench "The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel", Shailene Woodley "Insurgent", Helen Mirren "Woman in Gold", Cara Delevingne "Paper Towns"

Commentary - Will Meryl Streep continue her streak and reach that magic number of 20 nominations? You never know how things are going to turn out, but she is always a safe bet to place. Plus she is teaming up with Jonathan Demme, Diablo Cody, and Kevin Kline, all Academy Award winners. Until I hear otherwise, she is in. Cate Blanchett could return to the race as well, just two years after winning for Blue Jasmine. Todd Hayne's latest Carol is getting a ton of buzz and she also has Cinderella to boost her profile. Speaking of Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen has incredible luck with his female actors, and a year after getting her first nomination Emma Stone is now on the Oscar map. Allen's latest Irrational Man could be another hit, and Stone up against Joaquin Phoenix looks to be juicy acting material. Sandra Bullock, with a win for The Blind Side, and another nomination for Gravity, is now in the Academy's good graces after years of being American's sweetheart in light comedies. Our Brand is Crisis looks to be a mix of drama and comedy, and Bullock is a naturally talented performer who has finally gotten some recognition. Plus, with the Oscars, once you're in, you're in. Bullock will certainly be on a lot of people's minds heading into the fall. Finally, I have to ask the question: is it possible for Jennifer Lawrence to earn her fourth nomination in five years? The answer is yes, and Lawrence is teaming up with David O. Russell yet again in the upcoming Joy, a film that looks to be another hit for the pair. She may be Katniss and Mystique to the world, but she has really stretched herself, and shown just how versatile of an actor she is in now two David O. Russell films (and her work in Winter's Bone). If she is even half as good as she was in previous efforts, she will be a force to be reckoned with come next February. Early in this race it is important to play it safe, and picking four previous winners and a previous nominee is the way to do it. But there are plenty of other folks, previous winners and nominees, and plenty who have not quite gotten there yet to pick from in this year's race. I hope that all of them end up being as good as we hope so that people can finally stop commenting on how weak the Best Actress race is year in and year out (as I pointed out in an article last year, there were over 50 great picks for Best Actress, but the Academy, the critics, and the industry is so narrow-minded). At the top of that list is Saorise Ronan for the Sundance breakout Brooklyn, Marion Cotillard (who finally got that second nomination this year) as Lady Macbeth, Naomi Watts in Jean Marc-Vallee's Demolition (his last two films earned two acting nominations each), and Carey Mulligan in two potentials: Suffragette and Far From the Maddening Crowd. Angelina Jolie could rebound, after Unbroken failed to make much of an impact, with By The Sea. Jessica Chastain could overcome the sci-fi trappings of The Martian, and veterans such as Sally Field, Maggie Smith, Tilda Swinton, Anna Kendrick, Juliette Binoche, Nicole Kidman, Judi Dench, Michelle Williams, Charlize Theron, Ellen Page, Viola Davis, and Lily Tomlin, who apparently is one to watch for in Grandma, could all come into play. But it is not just the previous winners/nominees that are angling for one of those slots. Alicia Vikander, a talented young actress who turned a lot of heads in Anna Karenina, has three potentials this year. Emma Watson has made a name for herself in a post-Harry Potter world, and could make even more gains with Regression. Amy Schumer could be this year's Melissa McCarthy or Robert Downey Jr. in the already beloved Trainwreck. Speaking of Melissa McCarthy, early word is that her third feature with Paul Feig, Spy, is awesome, and McCarthy is her best yet. Could she pull off the same feat she did with Bridesmaids? Brie Larson could get the nod they owe her from Short Term 12 with adaptation of Room, and talents like Margot Robbie, Carmen Ejogo, and the incredible Gugu Mbatha-Raw all are on the verge of Academy recognition. There is also a slew of veteran actresses who are looking for that Michael Keaton-type nomination late in their careers. Blythe Danner, Charlotte Rampling, and yes, Drew Barrymore all have projects that look like real potentials. Finally, Rooney Mara and Greta Gerwig are flirting with lead/supporting, as always at this early stage it is hard to tell how their campaigns will handle them, so things could get flipped around depending on where they land.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Southpaw Trailer

Some great talent is involved including Kurt Sutter, Antoine Fuqua, Jake Gyllenhaal (who is owed another Oscar nod for several films, but most recently for Nightcrawler), Rachel McAdams, Naomie Harris, and Forest Whitaker. And with Weinstein behind it anything is possible. But I can't decide if it is a hard-hitting look at tragedy, addiction, and fame, or a family melodrama. Decide for yourself:

Spectre Teaser Trailer

007 returns after the massive success of Skyfall, including two Oscars and a buttload of cash. Daniel Craig is back, as is Sam Mendes, and another great cast is on deck. Of course, you should never judge a movie by its trailer, especially a teaser. But I will say that I am super excited for this film, and that at least we will get stellar productions values and an A-List cast.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Adapted Screenplay

First 2016 Predictions
Nick Hornby "Brooklyn"
Phyllis Nagy "Carol"
Lucinda Coxon "The Danish Girl"
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and Mark L. Smith "The Revenant" 
Aaron Sorkin "Steve Jobs"

Other Contenders - Charles Leavitt, Rick Jaffa, and Amanda Silver "In the Heart of the Sea" Jesse Andrews "Me & Earl & The Dying Girl", John Logan "Genius", John Logan, Neal Purvis, and Robert Wade "Spectre", Billy Ray "The Secret in Their Eyes", Robert Zemeckis and Christopher Browne "The Walk", Cary Fukunaga "Beasts of No Nation", Emma Donoghue "Room", Drew Goddard "The Martian", David Nicholls "Far From the Maddening Crowd", Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber "Paper Towns", Kieran Fitzgerald and Oliver Stone "Snowden", Scott Cooper, Jez Butterworth, and Mark Mallouk "Black Mass", Jacob Koskoff, Michael Lesslie, and Todd Louiso "Macbeth", Peter Landesman "Concussion", Marielle Heller "The Diary of a Teenage Girl", Saul Dibb and Matt Charman "Suite Francaise", J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan "Star Wars: The Force Awakens", Doug Ellin and Rob Weiss "Entourage", Joss Whedon "Avengers: Age of Ultron", Derek Connolly and Colin Trevorrow "Jurassic World", Kay Cannon "Pitch Perfect 2", Adam McKay and Paul Rudd "Ant-Man", Jason Fuchs "Pan"

Commentary - Another year where it looks like Adapted Sceenplay will have less top-notch contenders than original screenplay. Who says Hollywood is out of ideas? I think the top of the list has to be this year's original screenplay winner Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu. The December release is a bit unnerving as recent history has suggested that releasing a film too late now actually hurts your chances to catch up to earlier contenders (Boyhood and Birdman had been on the circuit for months). But the subject, the cast, and the director all say that it will be one to watch for. Tom Hooper could return to the winners circle with The Danish Girl. It has the newly minted Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne playing a transgender individual, but also has some period classy vibes that could cause it to crossover to Oscar voters (the way The Imitation Game was able to overcome its gay protagonist to get a lot of nominations, although I hope Hooper and his screenwriter Lucinda Coxon don't gloss over the subject matter this time around). Plus Hooper's last two films The King's Speech and Les Miserables were big Oscar winners, so he has a good track record in the last five years or so. Carol is Todd Haynes return to the big screen after some television success. Phyllis Nagy is a two-time Emmy nominee for Mrs. Harris, and this is her first big screen adventure. The project looks fantastic and it could be an award-worthy debut. I know that there have been some issue getting Steve Jobs to the screen, but Sorkin is always good for a lightning fast, entertaining, and smart script. Until I see some reviews that suggest that the final product didn't work out, he's in. Finally, Nick Hornby barely missed the cut this year for Wild (probably a solid sixth or seventh vote), but could redeem himself with Brooklyn, one of two Sundance films (the other being Me & Earl & The Dying Girl) that could breakthrough into this Oscar race. Speaking of Me & Earl & The Dying Girl, it is definitely in this race, but I still question if it is one of those comedies like Juno/Little Miss Sunshine that will win over voters hearts, or will it be considered too light for the voters. Plus, there has been a streak of great YA adaptations including The Perks of Being a Wallflower, The Fault in Our Stars, and The Spectacular Now, all of which, I think, have been inhibited by their teen trappings. Beyond that there are several potentials, although not as many as its counterpart. Ron Howard's latest In the Heart of Sea was moved from March to right in the thick of Oscar season meaning that the studio must have faith in its chances. John Logan could return to the race with either Genius, or with the Skyfall sequel Spectre, which could finally breakthrough some major categories for the Bond franchise. Cary Fukunaga is returning to the big screen with Beasts of No Nation after winning an Emmy for True Detective, and he will have the feisty Netflix team behind him. The Martian is a great science fiction novel, and the film has a lot of great parts to it. Emma Donoghue is trying to do what Gillian Flynn couldn't do and adapted her own novel to an Oscar nomination. Paper Towns could pull some of the love away from the YA crowd going for Me & Earl & the Dying Girl, and the Brits are in town with Macbeth and Far From the Maddening Crowd. And don't forget the blockbusters. Guardians of the Galaxy got a WGA nod, so look out for Star Wars, The Avengers, Pitch Perfect, Ant-Man, Pan, and Jurassic World. After this year's ratings were down, there might be a push to embrace bigger films. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

26th Annual GLAAD Media Award Winners - Part 1

The rest of the winners will be presented in May!

Best Film (Wide Release) - The Imitation Game

Best Drama Series - How to Get Away With Murder

Best Comedy Series - Transparent

Best Individual Episode (Without LGBT Character) - Drop Dead Diva - Identity Crisis

Best TV Movie/Miniseries - The Normal Heart

Best Music Artist - Against Me! "Transgender Dysphoria Blues"

Best Daily Drama - Days of Our Lives

Best Comic Book - Kurtis J. Wiebe and Roc Upchurch "Rat Queens"

Best Digital Journal Article - Advocate.com "31 Days of PrEP"

Best Blog - Autostraddle.com

Saturday, March 21, 2015

2015 SXSW Film Festival Audience Award Winners

Narrative Feature Competition
Krisha - Directed by Trey Edward Shults

Documentary Feature Competition
Peace Officer - Directed by Scott Christopherson and Brad Barber

Hello, My Name is Doris - Directed by Michael Showalter

Narrative Spotlight
The Little Death - Directed by Josh Lawson

Documentary Spotlight
A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story - Directed by Sara Hirsch Bordo

Uncle Kent 2 - Directed by Todd Rohal

Turbo Kid - Directed by RKSS Collective

Mr. Robot - Directed by Sam Esmail

24 Beats Per Second
Landfill Harmonic - Directed by Brad Allgood and Graham Townsley

Kings of Nowhere - Directed by Betzabé García

Festival Favorites
The Look of Silence - Directed by Joshua Oppenheimer

Excellence in Poster Design
Pink Grapefruit - Designed By Simon Dargan for Musta Lunta

Excellence in Title Design
The Fitzroy - Designed By Chris Tozer and Marko Anstice

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Original Screenplay

First 2016 Predictions
Matt Charman, Joel & Ethan Coen "Bridge of Spies"
Quentin Tarantino "The Hateful Eight"
Woody Allen "Irrational Man"
David O. Russell and Annie Mumulo "Joy"
Richard Linklater "That's What I'm Talking About"

Other Contenders - Amy Schumer and Judd Apatow "Trainwreck", Angelina Jolie "By the Sea", Chris Sparling "The Sea of Trees", Michael Arndt "Inside Out", Enrico Casarosa and Bob Peterson "The Good Dinosaur", Damon Lindelof, Brad Bird, and Jeff Jensen "Tomorrowland", Brian Sipe "Demolition", Diablo Cody "Ricki and the Flash", Abi Morgan "Suffragette", James Vanderbilt "Truth", Alan DiFore, Jim Kouf, and Jamie Linden "Money Monster", Cameron Crowe "Aloha", Kurt Sutter "Southpaw", Paul Weitz "Grandma", Werner Herzog "Queen of the Desert", Terrence Malick "Knight of Cups", Nancy Meyers "The Intern", Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig "Mistress America", Luke Davis "Life"

Commentary - The last couple of years have been really good to this category and, especially the last two years, the five contenders have far outweighed the quality of their adapted counterparts. This is rare phenomenon in Oscar history where it always seems that the Adapted race is tighter. This is a big part of a much bigger theory I am cooking up that will explain the last two years of Oscar voting (right now that sentence doesn't make sense, but I am working on a piece that will explain it). Right now, it is impossible to tell if that trend will continue for a third straight year, but I will say that it looks like it could be a tough race with a lot of great contenders. First and foremost is Quentin Tarantino. He has gotten two straight nominations, and actually won for Django Unchained, which is still kind of surprising considering the material. Clearly though the Academy voters have finally discovered how much they love him as a writer and The Hateful Eight could continue the streak. David O. Russell narrowly missed out on an Oscar for Joy, and teaming up with a fellow Oscar nominated writer Annie Mumulo could be the right combination for him to finally win on of those things. Woody Allen is a master of this category with the most nominations and wins in its history. He also is usually on an on again/off again cycle. So since Magic in the Moonlight failed to gain any traction, history tells us that Irrational Man could be a winner. If it is, expect him to be here once again. Richard Linklater's latest doesn't feel like Oscar bait, although neither did Boyhood, and it got six nominations including Best Picture and won one along the way. But even some of his earlier efforts at least got a screenplay nomination. Plus, he is now on the Academy's horizon, and could follow up quickly with another nomination, a phenomenon that happens quite often in recent Academy history. Once they like you, they like you. Finally, I am going to give the Coen Bros. another try. Last year they broke from their norm and wrote (or kind of added to) a screenplay for a film they did not direct. It turned into Unbroken which wasn't a complete disaster, but far from their best work. This year they are trying a similar strategy with Steven Spielberg's Bridge of Spies, along with newcomer Matt Charman. The film has Oscar bait written all over it. But so did Unbroken. Outside of these there are plenty of potentials. Cameron Crowe could recapture his Almost Famous magic with Aloha, Tomorrowland could break its genre barriers, and Pixar could strike again with Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur. Diablo Cody could get back into the race with the Meryl Streep awards potential Ricki and the Flash. Meryl Streep could also bring her awards luck to Emmy Winner Abi Morgan in Suffragette.Angelina Jolie could rebound from Unbroken with By the Sea, Chris Sparling could benefit from Gus Van Sant's incredible talents behind the camera. Terrence Malick, Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig, and Nancy Meyers should always be on the radar as well. But the film I am most looking forward to, as a potential in this category, is Amy Schumer and Judd Apatow's Trainwreck. The reviews of the unfinished product out of SXSW were fantastic, and it could be this year's Bridesmaids: the well-received raunchy comedy that breaks past stereotypes to awards glory. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

Friday, March 20, 2015

Emmys Rule Orange is the New Black as Drama

Just like I think the Limited Series rule changes at this year's Emmys should be named the "True Detective Rule", I was pretty sure that the hour vs. half-hour rule was basically the "Orange is the New Black Rule". Glee and Jane the Virgin, despite being one-hour long, were ruled as comedies, which is the appropriate placement. I'm still not buying the Shameless switch, but that one was allowed in as well, which is fair because it is one of those show that really does border comedy and drama. But Orange is the New Black, for me, was the big test to see if these panels, who can override the rules and place shows where they want to compete, was just a ruse to appease those who were frustrated with Dramas hopping down to comedy to outrun the tough Drama categories, or a worthy body that can make reasoned and accurate decisions. Well today, the committee ruled that Orange is the New Black is in fact a drama, which it is. It is a great show, and I think it could still make some impact at the Emmys. But, expect for a few Uzo Aduba moments, it is a drama, and I am glad to see the committee finally put it in the category it deserves. I hope they do the same thing if True Detective takes another shot at Drama Series for its Season 2. I can't think of too many other shows with a lot of Emmy potential (the four that were up in the air are now decided), but I think that so far, this new system, and the new rules are working. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Supporting Actor

First 2016 Predictions
Alan Alda "Bridge of Spies"
Robert DeNiro "Joy"
Idris Elba "Beasts of No Nation"
Tom Hardy "The Revenant"
Samuel L. Jackson "The Hateful Eight"

Other Contenders - Bradley Cooper "Joy", Ken Watanabe "Sea of Trees", Seth Rogen "Steve Jobs", Kurt Russell "The Hateful Eight", Bruce Dern "The Hateful Eight", Michael Madsen "The Hateful Eight", Tim Roth "The Hateful Eight", Demian Bichir "The Hateful Eight", Mark Rylance "Bridge of Spies", Billy Bob Thornton "Our Brand is Crisis", Anthony Mackie "Our Brand is Crisis", Harvey Keitel "The Early Years", Nick Offerman "Me & Earl & the Dying Girl", Jude Law "Genius", Dominic West "Genius", Guy Pearce "Genius", Emory Cohen "Brooklyn", Domnhall Gleeson "Brooklyn", Kevin Bacon "Black Mass", Peter Saarsgard "Black Mass", Benedict Cumberbatch "Black Mass", Corey Stoll "Black Mass", Joel Edgerton "Black Mass", Sylvester Stallone "Creed", Forest Whitaker "Southpaw", Ralph Fiennes "A Bigger Splash", Kevin Kline "Ricki and the Flash", Mark Ruffalo "Spotlight", Stanley Tucci "Spotlight", Steve Carell "Freehold", Chris Cooper "Demolition", Kyle Chandler "Carol", Cillian Murphy "In the Heart of the Sea", George Clooney "Money Monster", Ben Kingsley "The Walk", Sean Harris "Macbeth", Dean Norris "The Secret in Their Eyes", Michael Fassbender "Slow West", Aaron Paul "Fathers and Daughters", Albert Brooks "Concussion", Benicio Del Toro "Sicario", Josh Brolin "Sicario", Bill Murray "Aloha", Christoph Waltz "Tulip Fever", Ben Whishaw "Suffragette"

Commentary - Last year saw an overdue veteran launch the Oscar season in January aka in the middle of the previous Oscar season and ride the buzz all the way to an Oscar win. Right now, I don't see a J.K. Simmons doing that this time around, but there are plenty of top-notch contenders for voters to choose from. At the top of my list this year is actually Robert DeNiro for Joy (Bradley Cooper could go either supporting or lead, I'm thinking a co-lead with Lawrence, but the story does seem to revolve around her. Until that it is decided, I am sticking with him in lead considering he is an Oscar poster boy at this point). Yes, DeNiro is a two-time Oscar winner, but I think he had a lot of votes a few years ago for Silver Linings Playbook. If Russell brings out the same quality of performance this time around, I feel like Oscar voters will respond in kind. That same year Samuel L. Jackson (and Leonardo DiCaprio), got unfairly forced out of their supporting category by the co-lead Christoph Waltz in what was clearly category fraud (for the record, Waltz was great, just in the wrong category). He is one of the hardest working actors out there, does great work with Tarantino, and is overdue to the say the least. Bridge of Spies teams up Spielberg and Hanks once again, and is pure Academy bait. Alan Alda is a previous nominee in another historical film from a top notch director, and he is a veteran with a great career. He will face though some internal competition from Tony winner Mark Rylance. Idris Elba is a highly talented actor with several Emmy nominations under his belt. But despite a burgeoning film career, he has yet to get an Oscar nomination. The new Cary Fukunaga Beasts of No Nation will have the tenacious Netflix behind it, and the role has awards written all over it. Finally, another British actor with a litany of great films roles is looking for his first Oscar nomination. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu follows up his three Oscar wins with The Revenant. And Tom Hardy, who has been flirting with awards attention for a few years now, may finally get a meaty enough role in a big project with a lot of buzz. Beyond those five there are an innumerable amount of contenders. Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe with Gus Van Sant looks promising. Seth Rogen proved he could do dramatic work with 50/50 and Take This Waltz. With a Aaron Sorkin script, he could break through the awards barrier. Sam Jackson is not the only Hateful Eight actor with some potential, as Tarantino has stacked his ensemble with reliable veterans like Bruce Dern, Michael Madsen, Kurt Russell, Demian Bichir, and Tim Roth. Other ensemble work includes Black Mass (Benedict Cumberbatch, Kevin Bacon, Joel Edgerton, and Corey Stoll), Spotlight (Stanley Tucci and Mark Ruffalo), Genius (Guy Pearce, Dominic West, Jude Law), Brooklyn (Emory Cohen and Domnhall Gleeson), Our Brand is Crisis (Anthony Mackie and Billy Bob Thornton), and the guys from Ron Howard's newest, In The Heart of the Sea. Bill Murray was great in St. Vincent, but it was too lightweight to break into that rough Best Actor race this past year. I have high hopes that Aloha will be a return to form for Cameron Crowe, and it could bring Bill a well-deserved second nod. Ben Whishaw could be the male standout among an incredible cast of women in Suffragette. Vets Harvey Keitel and Sylvester Stallone could be returning to the prestige pic fold, Albert Brooks could finally get a nod (the one they owe him for Drive), and Chris Cooper could return to the Oscar stage with Demolition. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Oscar Narrative: First 2016 Predictions - Best Supporting Actress

First 2016 Oscar Predictions
Jessica Chastain "The Martian"
Jennifer Jason Leigh "The Hateful Eight"
Virginia Madsen "Joy"
Rooney Mara "Carol"
Amy Ryan "Bridge of Spies"

Other Contenders - Sarah Paulson "Carol", Kate Winslet "Steve Jobs", Katherine Waterston "Steve Jobs", Dianne Ladd "Joy", Rachel Weisz "The Light Between Oceans", Paker Posey "Irrational Man", Kristen Stewart "Clouds of Sils Maria", Julia Roberts "Money Monster", Julia Roberts "The Secret in Their Eyes", Melissa Leo "Snowden", Shailene Woodley "Snowden", Meryl Streep "Suffragette", Anne-Marie Duff "Suffragette", Helena Bonham Carter "Suffragette", Cate Blanchett "Truth", Cate Blancett "Cinderella", Vanessa Bayer "Trainwreck", Julie Walters "Brooklyn", Greta Gerwig "Mistress America", Rachel McAdams "Southpaw", Rachel McAdams "Aloha", Naomi Watts "The Sea of Trees", Brie Larson "Room", Ellen Page "Freeheld", Julianne Moore "Freeheld", Charlotte Le Bon "The Walk", Zoe Kazan "Our Brand Is Crisis", Melanie Laurent "By the Sea", Adele Exarchopoulos "The Last Face", Renee Zellweger "The Whole Truth", Dakota Johnson "A Bigger Splash", Gugu Mbatha-Raw "Concussion", Sienna Miller "Black Mass", Julianne Nicholson "Black Mass", Juno Temple "Black Mass", Dakota Johnson "Black Mass", Keira Knightley "Everest", Toni Collette "Miss You Already", Kirsten Dunst "Midnight Special", Holliday Grainger "Tulip Fever"

Commentary - It has been about three weeks since we closed Oscar season 2014-2015, and I am already too anxious for this upcoming year. We are in the lull now. The big films of 2014 get one last hurrah at the MTV Movie Awards, and then television and theater take center stage with the Daytime Emmys, the Tonys, and eventually the Emmys, just as the fall festivals heat up. I hope you all have enjoyed your few weeks of award-less peace, because it will not be long before the awards world heats up again. Before it gets too crazy, let's take a look at the upcoming Oscar race. Let's start with my first predictions. At the top of list is Jessica Chastain. The Martin is a genre piece, Ridley Scott has not had a hit in a while, and Chastain barely missed the cut last year. But the source material is fantastic (seriously go to your library/digital library and read it now), and Chastain is one of those actors that is destined to win an Oscar, and destined to garner a lot of nominations along the way. If done right, The Martian could be her third nomination. A couple of years ago there was a lot of buzz for Jennifer Jason Leigh as a nomination in the failed Margot at the Wedding. This time around she is once again garnering huge buzz as being practically the only major female character in Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful Eight. Kerry Washington didn't gain much traction for Django Unchained (not a big enough role, but she would have been on my list), but maybe Leigh can go further this time. She is a talented veteran actress that has been flirting with a comeback for a while. This could be the film that finally gets her back into the spotlight. Carol is Todd Hayne's latest, and it is getting a ton of buzz early on. There is though a potential for some category switches, which could move a lot of people around. But I think that they will leave Cate Blanchett as the lead, and push Sarah Paulson (just on the outside looking in, a perpetual status for her unfortunately) and Rooney Mara for supporting. But Mara is apparently borderline co-lead. This makes me think they will definitely push her to supporting to increase her chances of a nomination/win. She is already a nominee with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, and if she can hold her own against the likes of Cate Blanchett and Sarah Paulson, then she should be in the mix. The last two slots, for now, are going to two recently nominated veterans in incredibly baity projects. First is David O. Russell's Joy. He is on a streak lately, and his latest is looking to be another great ensemble piece including the likes of  Jennifer Lawrence, Robert DeNiro, Bradley Cooper, Edgar Ramirez, and Dianne Ladd. Ladd is a potential, but I think that it is Virginia Madsen will be the one of the two that rises to the top. She has been waiting for another Sideways, and I think this could be it. Plus, Russell has become the actors director and hist last two films got four acting nominations. This track record helps Madsen, and the whole cast. Finally, Amy Ryan has been doing great work since her Gone Baby Gone nomination, and this year is going to be a major player in Steven Spielberg's Cold War drama Bridge of Spies opposite Tom Hanks and Alan Alda. Need I say more? So those are my first predictions. Let's now look at those I am not currently predicting, but I have certainly not forgotten. Kate Winslet and Katherine Waterston could join the ranks if Steve Jobs is a good as looks, but that film has had some issues getting made so who knows what the final product will look like. The aforementioned Paulson and Ladd are definitely in this. Several actresses including Cate Blanchett, Julia Roberts, and Rachel McAdams have several projects to choose from. Parker Posey could rise from indie film star to Oscar nominee with Woody Allen's latest Irrational Man. Several pairs of stars from the same film could also make an impact: Meryl Streep, Helena Bonham Carter and Anne-Marie Duff for Suffragette; Julianne Moore and Ellen Page in Freeheld, Melissa Leo and Shailene Woodley for Snowden, and the trio in Black Mass. Kristen Stewart became the first American to win a Cesar Award, and could ride it to Oscar glory with The Clouds of Sils Maria, Naomi Watts with Gus Van Sant in The Sea of Trees is a nice match, Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach could finally get a project of theirs to get Oscar attention, Rachel Weisz in The Light Between Oceans could overcome Derek Cianfrance's style, and Vanessa Bayer could be another SNL alum that makes her way to Oscar.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Bessie Teaser Trailer

Watch out Frances McDormand, you might have some competition come September in the form of Queen Latifah, who looks to be a standout on HBO's latest television movie Bessie. It is about the life of legendary blues singer Bessie Smith. This is just a short teaser, and I'm sure we will get a longer look at the upcoming film soon. But at first glance, I can say I am impressed, and this might finally be the lead role Queen Latifah has been waiting too long for. Monique, Michael Kenneth Williams, Khandi Alexander, Omar Epps, Oliver Platt, and Charles S. Dutton round out the supporting cast, and I would be surprised if at least a few of those gets some recognition as well, if the film is a success. Although with HBO behind it, it is hard not to have faith. Check out the teaser below, check out Bessie on HBO May 16th!

Top 100 Films of the 2010's...So Far: Part IX

20. Bridesmaids (2011) - The whole point, many thought, of Bridesmaids, was to prove that the women could be as funny and raunchy as the men, say in things like The Hangover. Well, if that is what people were expecting from Bridesmaids, then they did in fact make that point. Bridesmaids was a laugh-out-loud comedy that in many ways outdid the guys in the raunchy department. But Bridesmaids is not the female Hangover, and it is incredibly condescending to compare it based on gender alone. First because Bridesmaids in an entirely different entity, and second, and most importantly, it far exceeds any of the male counterparts in terms of humor, and definitely in terms of quality. Led by the always great Kristen Wiig, in the role that proved she was not just a great SNL cast member, but a genuine movie star, Bridesmaids was a
brilliantly funny ensemble piece. Standouts including Maya Rudolph, Wendi McLendon-Covey, the late great Jill Clayburgh, Ellie Kemper, Rebel Wilson, and Chris O'Dowd created a wealth of fantastic characters that added a great amount of humor and heart to the proceedings. But among the plethora of great supporting roles, two rose to the top. First of course is Melissa McCarthy. Many have argued that her performance was one-note, although even if you think that, pulling off that kind of humor is not as easy as people think it is. But there is one scene I always point to to prove those folks wrong. It is the scene where she goes to visit Annie after the disastrous bridal shower, and she gives her the tough love that she so desperately needs. In that moment McCarthy remained incredibly funny, but also showed us Megan's fierce loyalty, and surprising heart. She earned her rewards. The other standout was Rose Byrne, who with this role, and her role in this past year's Neighbors is quickly earning her place as a go-to comedic actress. She is a lot more restrained than her counterparts, but she pulls off her role as the pseudo-villain with grace. Bridesmaids' cast was not the only element that separated it from most of the other comedy films in the last several years. It also does so by being able to not only be raunchy and ridiculously hilarious, but also to have a lot of heart. At its deepest point Bridesmaids is about friendship and the struggles of relationships, and at just the right moments, Annie Mumulo and Kristen Wiig's Oscar-nominated script, has the power to knock you out with not only laughs but a huge dose of love. It is a winning combination.

19. Zero Dark Thirty (2012) - Kathryn Bigelow is a veteran director who finally got her due in 2009 when she became the first female to win Best Director at the Academy Awards. She also proved in 2009, with The Hurt Locker, that she could bring an intensity and a unique vision to the well-worn war film genre. But for me, and for a lot of folks, she went even a step further with 2012's Zero Dark Thirty. She deftly combined a war drama with an intelligence thriller in the age of terrorism, that brilliantly documented the journey to find and kill Osama Bin Laden, and most importantly, gave us all of this from the perspective of a female agent, something you don't see a lot in these well-worn genres .There was nothing familiar though about Zero Dark Thirty, and not just because it had a female lead. It was shot in an almost documentary style, had little dialogue, and purposefully left out a zillion details, allowing for the moviegoer to be as
frustrated and as intrigued as the central protagonist and her team. It was not a bluntly obvious film and it didn't take political sides (although rival Oscar campaigns were able to kill its chances with politics, an ironic and unfortunate ending to this film's awards potential). It showed the events as they were known by the filmmakers. It has an almost detached approach to a subject and a mission that was anything but unemotional. It takes a lot of skill to make something that feels like a documentary have the kind of propelling narrative, emotional impact, and visual style that excites moviegoers the way narrative films do. Screenwriter Mark Boal deftly weaves the facts of the mission with small, yet walloping emotional moments for his characters. He purposely leaves out a tremendous amount of detail, partly because there wasn't a tremendous amount to had, and also because its minimalist approach allowed for the team of talented actors to interpret and work the material. Jennifer Ehle, Jason Clarke, Kyle Chandler, Mark Strong, Jessica Collins, Edgar Ramirez, Joel Edgerton, Chris Pratt, Taylor Kinney, and the late James Gandolfini all make the most of their supporting roles. But it is Chastain that makes the most of her screen time as a dynamic lead. Despite few details, she manages to find the vulnerability, the strength, the frustration, and the passion of her character that quietly explodes on the screen. But it is Bigelow, and her top-notch technical team including her sound folks, and her editors Dylan Tichenor and William Goldenberg, that deserve the most credit for Zero Dark Thirty's success. They weave a powerful tale, give the heroes that finally brought down Bin Laden the respect they deserve, and tell an intense and mesmerizing story.

18. Enough Said (2013) - Nicole Holofcener gave me two of my favorite films in the few short years of this decade. The first was Please Give (see the last post for my thoughts on it). The second was her 2013 follow-up Enough Said. Starring the dynamic duo of Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini, Enough Said is a wonderfully touching comedy about love in the latter part of life. It is about two seemingly opposite folks with kids, ex-spouses, and a lot of baggage who somehow find charm, love, and a fun in a second-chance relationship. Holofcener has ditched some of the cynicism of Please Give, leaving enough to give Enough Said an edge, but allowing for a lot more heart this time around. I loved Please Give's darkness, but I think the main reason that Enough Said is higher on the list is because of that much needed does of heart. It gives the film more accessibility and lasting impact. But her insight into human emotion, into human mistrust,
and human relationships is as sharp as ever, and the dialogue and characterizations she gives to our two leads builds an honest and authentic relationship on screen. But a lot of the credit also has to go to its cast. Catherine Keener is great in her supporting role, but it is the combination of Louis-Dreyfus and Gandolifini that make this film worth watching. A five-time Emmy winner, with a stunning total of 18 nominations across three successful sitcoms, Julia Louis-Dreyfus is a television superstar who has rarely stepped into film. James Gandolfini was a television legend with Tony Soprano but towards the end of his unfortunately short life, he had begun to make a name for himself as a supporting player in several well-received films. This was his final lead role. All of this is to say that this was an unusual combination to lead a relatively major film release. But their quirky sensibilities, there impeccable chemistry, and I believe there lack of film experience actually helped them find an authenticity on screen that is sorely lacking in most movie romantic comedies.I hope that this role will encourage Louis-Dreyfus to seek out more indie comedies. I love her on television, but it was nice to see her expand her repertoire. As for Gandolfini, I hope that people look back at this role and remember that is was one of his finest, that he was an actor who was not afraid to show both his dark side and his soft side, and that he was one of our finest actors who is simply irreplaceable.

17. Take Shelter (2011) - Take a look at my post before on Mud and you will quickly find that I am a big fan of Jeff Nichols short but substantial career. My favorite film of his, and the one that I am saddened did not get any attention from the Academy was his 2011 work Take Shelter. The film stars Michael Shannon (who was robbed of that Indie Spirit Best Actor Award), and the wonderful Jessica Chastain in one of her banner years (of course the last four years have been banner years for her, but 2011 included Take Shelter, The Tree of Life, and her Oscar-nominated work in The Help). Like most of Nichols work so far, and his upcoming Midnight Special looks to continue the tradition, Take Shelter is a dizzying combination of drama,
suspense, and a bit of supernatural. At its core, Take Shelter is the story of a family coping with the onset of a mental disease. But this core idea is brilliantly wrapped in paranormal thriller, a tightly wound suspense that keeps you guessing whether Shannon's character is truly experiencing an other-wordly, religious, or paranormal experience, or whether it is all in his mind. The film builds and builds, a slow burn of expert precision leaving the audience guessing all the way up till the end. In terms of taut direction, of precision, and tightness on screen, Take Shelter is easily Nichol's best work, and a spectacular example of his talent as a director, and even more so as a screenwriter. And his two leads embrace the material with gusto. As the suffering wife who has trouble deciding whether to support her husband in his building of a shelter, and his vision, or to seek help to aid him break his mental state, Chastain is a brilliant mixture of restraint, control, and vulnerability, and it is her work here that for many, including me, made it clear that she was one to watch for. I am proud to say that we were right. But it is Michael Shannon that commands the screen. He is one of those guys that had been working hard for years, and was simply looking for the right project to truly show off his talents. We got a taste of his work with Revolutionary Road, which made him an Academy Award nominee. But I still believe it is Take Shelter where Shannon proves that he is one of the most talented character actors working today, but also has the ability to be a compelling and commanding lead. His visions, his journey is the center of this brilliant psychological thriller, and his performance grabs you and never lets you go, even long after the screen has gone dark.

16. Inception (2010) - Christopher Nolan has been in a bit of a funk the last five years. The Dark Knight Rises and Interstellar were both excellent films that were far and above better than most genre pieces, and we're, in general, well-received by critics, fans, and the industry. But for Nolan they seemed to be a bit of a step backwards compared to likes of The Dark Knight, and 2010's Best Picture nominee, still his only film to manage that feat, the trippy and bold Inception. Like all of Nolan's work, Inception is a visual feast, with stunning effects, jaw-dropping cinematography work from Wally Pfister (who won an Oscar for his work), as well as incredible sound work (once again both the mixers and the editors won Oscars, both of which were incredibly deserving). But like all of Nolan's films, the technical aspects of the film are only half the equation. Nolan has always taken great care to expand his characters, carefully construct a taut and fluid
story, and combine visual genre with ensemble work. Inception is no exception, and in terms of the ensemble, it is only rivaled by his Batman franchise. Leonardo DiCaprio continued to prove he was one of the best actors working, and still is, as the lead (combined with his lead role in Shutter Island with Scorsese, 2010 proved to be a great year for him). Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Michael Caine, Ken Watanabe, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, and Joseph Gordon-:Levitt round out an incredible cast of Oscar winners, veteran actors, great newcomers, and many Nolan alums. Their work as a whole is fantastic, and helps elevate Inception beyond just a crowd-pleasing blockbuster, to a truly prestigious film. The final piece of the puzzle is the fantastic script, and bold direction by Nolan. He is truly a visionary, which is evident by the fact that even his so-called misses are miles above most of the films released each year. The layers of his story and characters, the way they all connect is miraculous in its construction. Most importantly, Nolan always tries to engage both heart and mind. Inception does both, it keeps to guessing for days afterwards, and knocks you on your butt when you least expect it. An extraordinary effort.

15. The King's Speech (2010) - This is another one that will inspire hate among many in the film blogging community. It is the latest film to be used as proof that the Academy is a group of old and out of touch voters that don't understand the future of film. It is called one of the worst Best Picture winners of all time. This is just simply not true. To quote a piece I wrote a while back: "I'd also like to point out that for a film that has received so much hate from critics by the time it won Best Picture, it had 94% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, and 88 on Metacritic, a 97 from the BFCA, and was nominated for 7 Golden Globes (1 Win), 11 Critics Choice Awards (2 Wins), and received nominations/wins from the Chicago Film Critics
Association, Central Ohio Film Critics Association, Dallas-Ft. Worth Critics Association, Denver Film
Critics Society, Houston Film Critics Society, Iowa Film Critics, Las Vegas Film Critics Society, London Critics Circle, Los Angeles Film Critics Association, National Society of Film Critics, New York Film Critics Circle, New York Films Critics Online, Online Film Critics Society, Phoenix Film Critics Society, San Diego Film Critics Society, Southeastern Film Critics Association, St. Louis Film Critics Association, and the Washington DC Area Film Critics Association. If critics and bloggers hated that film so much, they had a funny way of showing it." The King's Speech was a more traditional pick for the Academy, and it did fit in line with older, mostly white, mostly male voters that make up the majority of Academy voters. But The King's Speech is not some half-baked historical misfire. In fact it is, for most of the film, a quaint drama about the lives of three people who are trying to solve the emotional and physical problems of man who is supposed to be a leader in a time of great peril. It is about ordinary man forced into extraordinary circumstances that must tackle his own challenges to rise up and lead his people. It is a well-made, entertaining, and emotional resonant drama led by three extraordinary performances from Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, and Helena Bonham Carter. For the record, no The King's Speech would not have been my pick for Best Picture in 2010, as you shall see soon enough. But the backlash against does not diminish the fact that The King's Speech is a great film. Period.

14. The Kids are All Right (2010) - I read a lot of reviews about how Lisa Cholodenko brought such beautiful characterizations and emotional control to HBO's adaptation of Olive Kitteridge, a wonderful miniseries that is sure to be a huge Emmy player this year, and is something that all of you should take the time to see. It was absolutely no surprise to be that Cholodenko was that talented. Her Laurel Canyon was an underrated gem of the last decade, but it was 2010's The Kids Are All Right that proved that Lisa Cholodenko was a writer/director to watch out for. Olive Kitteridge is proof that my prediction was right. The Kids Are All Right was a unequivocal success. It was made for $3.5 Million and made over $34 million dollars worldwide at the specialty box office. It also went on became a Golden Globe winning film that earned four Oscar nominations including Best Picture. It was one of the first films featuring a lesbian couple
to achieve such success, making it a groundbreaking film in that sense. But this film's goal was not to make a bunch of money, or win a bunch of awards, although I'm sure its cast and crew appreciated the outpouring from critics, the industry, and moviegoers. Cholodenko, her co-writer Stuart Blumberg, and their stunning cast just wanted to show the world the normalcy, the humor, the drama, and the humanity (the good parts and the bad parts) of a marriage and of a family. It is a film that shows us that gay couples are just like straight couples with their marital problems, their family struggles, and their ultimate commitment to each other and to their families. It is a pertinent film with an important message for the times we live in, especially as the issue of gay marriage continues to capture the zeitgeist in American culture. The Kids Are All Right though is never preachy and it is chocked full of top-notch performances from the likes of Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, and Mark Ruffalo. It is a wonderfully funny and emotional tale of real humans and real problems. It is touching, entertaining, and quietly makes its message clear. A wonderful treat, and an outstanding film.

13. Django Unchained (2012) - Between 1994 and 2009, Quentin Tarantino was mostly off of the Oscar circuit. Jackie Brown got a nod for Robert Forster, and the awesome and completely overlooked Kill Bill series was ignored (seriously Academy, both films were better than most of the choices in both those respective years). Now, all of the sudden with Inglourious Basterds in 2009, and then Django Unchained in 2012, neither of which were Academy-esque films,  suddenly received new found love from the Academy, and I honestly could not be happier. Somehow Tarantino has managed to turn ultra-violent, revisionist history films with tons of crude humor into Academy Awards favorites. I think that it is quite possible that Tarantino
is the only director who can combine those two poles of cinema and make it work. It shows that he is one of the most talented directors and screenwriters working today. Now onto Django Unchained. First, Tarantino turned an overly long, over-the-top dark comedy revenge tale into one of the biggest and best films of 2012. He does this by doing something that he actually does a lot, although its not obvious. He actually made the story about love. This is about Jamie Foxx's character Django taking revenge on the slave owner who has his wife in custody. It is about freeing, restoring his family, and finally getting the love of his life back. Even with the gimmicky, sometimes ridiculous lines and acting, there is this underlying humanity to the story that keeps you intrigued, and let's face it no matter how ridiculous it gets, it is always entertaining as hell. Second, Tarantino assembled an incredible cast of actors including Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Kerry Washington, and the dynamic villainous duo of Samuel L. Jackson and Leonardo DiCaprio. It is a shame that Weinstein kind of fumbled the initial release because this would have made a great SAG Ensemble nomination. Finally, Tarantino recaptured his revisionist history flair (that he had developed with Inglourious Basterds, and looks like will continue with The Hateful Eight this year), and we finally get to see the bad guys get what they deserve. That is was is best about Tarantino's version of history. The bad guys get their butt whooped, and the audience cheers them along.

12. 12 Years a Slave (2013) - As most of you know, my favorite film of 2013 was easily Gravity. It was a brilliantly constructed film that pushed the technology of film forward. But when 12 Years a Slave was announced as the Best Picture winner, I was thrilled. It's the same way I felt when Birdman was announced even though Selma was my favorite film of 2014. Just because it wasn't my favorite, doesn't mean it was not a worthy winner, and 12 Years a Slave will go down as one of the best Best Picture winners of the last several decades. Spurred by invigorated direction from the brilliantly bold Steve McQueen, and an emotional and passionate script from Oscar-winning screenwriter John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave is a brilliant adaptation of Solomon Northup's remarkable narrative of capture and freedom. Chitwetel Ejiofor, despite not being a household name, commands the screen with his passion, his ferocity, and his remarkable talent. Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o, in her first screen role, knocks it out of the park, and hopefully her performance in this film has launched a new career for a fascinating young talent. Michael Fassbender, and the criminally
under-rewarded Sarah Paulson (seriously, if she can't win an Emmy this year playing both sides of conjoined twins, I don't know if she ever will), are vicious villains without ever having to be over-the-top. Throw in great work from the likes of Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch and Alfre Woodard, and not only is 12 Years a Slave one of the best films of the last twenty five years, but has one of the best casts. 12 Years a Slave was not just a well-acted, well-directed, and well-written film (with some impeccable craft work as well, especially the Oscar-snubbed cinematography work of Sean Bobbitt), but it is also a unique film in so many ways. First, and the most obvious, is that it is the first truly black film to win Best Picture. It has a black director, an African-American screenwriter, and features a predominantly black cast. It made important history when it was announced as Best Picture, and hopefully has blazed the trail for more well-made black-centric films to make an impact on the Academy, aka the industry. But Solomon's tale it was makes this the most unique. I read a lot of slave narratives in college, but none compared to the remarkable tale of Solomon Northup. His struggle, his fight to get back to his family and his freedom is so passionate, so heartbreaking, and yet ultimately so incredibly uplifting and inspiring. McQueen, Ridley, and this wonderful cast have honored Solomon Northup by creating a breathtaking film that is as passionate and brave as he was.

11. Nebraska (2013) - Alexander Payne delighted me, when he quickly followed up his smash The Descendants with Nebraska just two years later. He did the same thing with About Schmidt and Sideways, and then it took seven years for another film. In that sense, I hope history doesn't repeat itself, because I don't know if I can wait another seven years for another Payne dramedy masterpiece.That is because Nebraska, like all of his films before, was a brilliant mix of humor and sadness, is chocked full of wacky, quirky, and simultaneously lovable and unlovable characters, and despite having no special effects or loud noises, showcases the talent and skill of its director. It is the story of a delusional man who seeks to travel
across the American Midwest to claim a prize that almost everyone else recognizes is probably a scheme. He is joined by his son, and later his nagging wife along his journey, as we quickly learn that really it is not about a prize at all. Bruce Dern, the veteran character actor who usually plays the bad guy, was absolutely brilliant, and finally got the lead role he has been working decades for. He plays a grumpy and seemingly delusional man, who is also extremely proud, wants the best for himself and his family. His wise-cracking wife is played by the incredibly funny June Squibb, who provides most of comedic relief that balances out the films quirk and drama. She is sharp, and is yet another awesome veteran that found the role that finally gave her some overdue recognition. Will Forte, quiet and dramatically understated as their son finds enough humor, and enough emotion in his role, and is the ensemble's unsung hero. But it is Bob Nelson's script, and Payne's quiet direction that pull Nebraska together. Their emotional and humorous tale of adventure, father and son, Midwestern values, and family quietly and effectively became one of the biggest Oscar successes of 2013, and easily became one of the best films of last decade, heck of the last 25 years.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Andy Samberg to Host 2015 Primetime Emmy Awards

The Television Academy has announced that Golden Globe and Emmy Award winner Andy Samberg will host his year's Primetime Emmy Awards. Samberg can sometimes over do it. Brooklyn Nine-Nine was a show I have liked since the beginning, but it has become a show I absolutely love, and cannot wait to see each week. That is because its writers have purposely toned down Samberg to even out some of the excess, and given more material to its supporting cast, creating one of the most dynamic ensemble comedies on television. I hope that this year's Emmy producers recognize the strategy of the Brooklyn Nine-Nine producers and balance out Samberg's excess with his exuberant sketch and live comedy talent, a skill he honed in on Saturday Night Live. Either way, I still think he will be a great host with a lot of energy and will produce some solid laughs in a show that doesn't have a lot of wiggle room for a host (there are a lot of categories). I also hope that the Television Academy's voting members give him a nomination for Brooklyn Nine-Nine this year, because he, the rest of the cast, and the show as a whole deserve a lot more attention than they got last year.

Disney Moves Ahead with Frozen 2

All of the Frozen fans out there can now rest easy, as Disney has officially announced plans to make a sequel to the Oscar-winning instant classic. It will be moving forward with the same directors as last time, and considering that Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, Jonathan Groff, and Josh Gad all returned for Frozen Fever, the new Disney short that we will all get to see this weekend, as it will be showing with Disney's newest live-action adaptation of a Disney classic, Cinderella, it is safe to assume that these guys are all game for Round 2. Also joining the mix for Frozen Fever are the Oscar-winning songwriters Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez. So once again, they are probably game for Round 2 as well. Both the short and the feature will probably be in Oscar play come next year. I imagine that Frozen Fever is the early front runner for the Animated Short, and gives that category some appeal to the viewers. And Cinderella's costumes, visual effects, and production design could be popular among those particular branches.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

RIP Richard Glatzer

For anyone who has followed this past Oscar season, and the journey of Julianne Moore to her overdue Oscar victory should be familiar with the name Richard Glatzer and his husband Wash Westmoreland. This dynamic duo produced many indie favorites over the last decade, Still Alice being their best and most successful. Moore mentioned many times the personal connection that these film makers had to the story of Still Alice, the struggle of a debilitating disease and the caregivers that fight for their life and survival. That is because Glatzer was suffering with ALS. After four years of battling the disease, I am sad to say that Richard Glatzer has passed away. All of us who have dreamed of seeing Julianne Moore win an Oscar owe Glatzer a lot of credit. But most importantly, any of us who love film should find inspiration not only in his successful career as a filmmaker, but in his undeniable spirit. Despite his limitations, he and his partner life finished one last film, a film that will continue to leave its mark. My thoughts and prayers are with Westmoreland and the rest of Glatzer's family, friends, and colleagues. And I thank him for his courage and for sharing his talent with the world. Rest in Peace old friend.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Brad Bird's Tomorrowland Could Breakthrough in Oscar Race

Brad Bird is a hugely talented, Academy-Award winning director, whose animated films including The Iron Giant, The Incredibles, and Ratatouille are all masterpieces of the art form. His foray into live-action films, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, I thought was a worthy entry into a great movie franchise. This gives me a lot of hope for his latest, from Disney, Tomorrowland. Starring George Clooney and Britt Robertson, and a whole host of talented actors, Tomorrowland looks ambitious, fun, and if the trailer indication the perfect balance of action, science fiction, and heart, a combination that Bird has nailed down to an art throughout his career. It probably won't be a huge Oscar contender, maybe an outside BP nominee, but will certainly be a hit among the craft guilds. Although films like Gravity give hope for well-qualified, prestigious genre pics to make a huge Oscar impact. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Ian McKellen and Bill Condon Enter Oscar Race With Mr. Holmes

I have kind of been cut off from the film world, as I'm sure pretty much all of us have been, for the last several weeks. We are in the lull now. Eventually Broadway and television will take center stage with the Tonys and the Emmys. And in about two months, we must dust off our Oscar boots as the season kicks off with Cannes and the upcoming summer season. Just because I have been a bit off the map lately doesn't mean that the there haven't been some Oscar updates. First and foremost was the Berlin Film Festival, which produced several potential early Oscar contenders. At the top of the list is probably Ian McKellen as an early Best Actor contender for Mr. Holmes, his version of Sherlock Holmes directed by his Gods and Monsters director Bill Condon. The early footage looks good, and the reviews out of the fest were pretty good, and particularly focused on McKellen's performance. The last few years have been brutal in the Best Actor race, so he may get washed out by bigger contenders. But Condon has a good track record with acting nominations, and McKellen is an overdue legend. As always, we'll have to wait and see...

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2015 MTV Movie Award Nominations

There are always a few WTF nominations (Annabelle, The Boy Next Door, The Other Woman), but overall, this is a pretty great list that balances indies with blockbusters, and recognizes comedy, sci-fi, and drama. Honestly, while I actually enjoyed most of the Oscar nominations this year, if the Academy is so worried about ratings, but also wants to keep its prestige factor, it should actually look to this year's MTV Movie Awards nominees. There is a sentence I thought I would never type. Show is April 12th.

Movie of the Year
American Sniper
The Fault in Our Stars
Gone Girl
Guardians of the Galaxy
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Best Female Performance
Scarlett Johansson "Lucy"
Jennifer Lawrence "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1"
Emma Stone "Birdman"
Shailene Woodley "The Fault in Our Stars"
Reese Witherspoon "Wild"

Best Male Performance
Bradley Cooper "American Sniper"
Ansel Elgort "The Fault in Our Stars"
Chris Pratt "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Channing Tatum "Foxcatcher"
Miles Teller "Whiplash"

Best Breakthrough Performance
Ellar Coltrane "Boyhood"
Ansel Elgort "The Fault in Our Stars"
Dylan O'Brien "The Maze Runner"
David Oyelowo "Selma"
Rosamund Pike "Gone Girl"

Best Duo
Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Channing Tatum & Jonah Hill "22 Jump Street"
James Franco & Seth Rogen "The Interview"
Shailene Woodley & Ansel Elgort "The Fault in Our Stars"
Zac Efron & Dave Franco "Neighbors"

Best Scared-As-S*** Performance
Zach Gilford "The Purge: Anarchy"
Jennifer Lopez "The Boy Next Door"
Dylan O'Brien "The Maze Runner"
Rosamund Pike "Gone Girl"
Annabelle Wallis "Annabelle"

Best Fight
Chris Evans vs. Sebastian Stan "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Dylan O'Brien vs. Will Poulter "The Maze Runner"
Edward Norton vs. Michael Keaton "Birdman"
Jonah Hill vs. Jillian Bell "22 Jump Street"
Seth Rogen vs. Zac Efron "Neighbors"

Best Shirtless Performance
Zac Efron "Neighbors"
Ansel Elgort "The Fault in Our Stars"
Chris Pratt "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Channing Tatum "Foxcatcher"
Kate Upton "The Other Woman"

Best Kiss
Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield "The Amazing Spider-Man 2"
James Franco & Seth Rogen "The Interview"
Rose Byrne & Halston Sage "Neighbors"
Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort "The Fault in Our Stars"

Best WTF Moment
Jason Sudekis and Charlie Day "Horrible Bosses 2"
Jonah Hill "22 Jump Street"
Miles Teller "Whiplash"
Rosario Dawson and Anders Holm "Top Five"
Seth Rogen & Rose Byrne "Neighbors"

Best Musical Moment
Bill Hader & Kristen Wiig "The Skeleton Twins"
Chris Pratt "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Jennifer Lawrence "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1"
Miles Teller "Whiplash"
Seth Rogen & Zac Efron "Neighbors"

Best Villain
Jillian Bell "22 Jump Street"
Peter Dinklage "X-Men: Days of Future Past"
Rosamund Pike "Gone Girl"
J.K. Simmons "Whiplash"
Meryl Streep "Into the Woods"

Best Comedic Performance
Rose Byrne "Neighbors"
Kevin Hart "The Wedding Ringer"
Chris Pratt "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Chris Rock "Top Five"
Channing Tatum "22 Jump Street"

Best On-Screen Transformation
Elizabeth Banks "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
Steve Carell "Foxcatcher"
Ellar Coltrane "Boyhood"
Eddie Redmayne "The Theory of Everything"
Zoe Saldana "Guardians of the Galaxy"

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The 41st Annual Saturn Award Nominations

2014 was not just a great year for the indies, but also a great year for the big guys as well as countless blockbusters were also well-reviewed and well-received by the industry as a whole. The Saturn Awards, while always a bit off in some areas, nonetheless prove that point exactly. Check out the TV and Film nominees below:

Best Comic Book to Film Release
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Captain American: The Winter Soldier
Guardians of the Galaxy
X-Men: Days of Future Past

Best Science Fiction Film Release
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Edge of Tomorrow
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
The Zero Theorem

Best Fantasy Film Release
The Grand Budapest Hotel
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
Into the Woods

Best Horror Film Release
The Babadook
Dracula Untold
Only Lovers Left Alive
The Purge: Anarchy

Best Thriller Film Release
American Sniper
The Equalizer
Gone Girl
The Guest
The Imitation Game

Best Action/Adventure Film Release
Exodus: Gods and Kings
Inherent Vice

Best Actor in a Film
Tom Cruise "Edge of Tomorrow"
Chris Evans "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Jake Gyllenhaal "Nightcrawler"
Michael Keaton "Birdman"
Matthew McConaughey "Interstellar"
Chris Pratt "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Dan Stevens "The Guest"

Best Actress in a Film
Emily Blunt "Edge of Tomorrow"
Essie Davis "The Babadook"
Anne Hathaway "Interstellar"
Angelina Jolie "Maleficent"
Jennifer Lawrence "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1"
Rosamund Pike "Gone Girl"

Best Supporting Actor in a Film
Richard Armitage "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies"
Josh Brolin "Inherent Vice"
Samuel L. Jackson "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Anthony Mackie "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Andy Serkis "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes"
J.K. Simmons "Whiplash"

Best Supporting Actress in a Film
Jessica Chastain "Interstellar"
Scarlett Johansson "Captain America: The Winter Solder"
Evangeline Lily "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies"
Rene Russo "Nightcrawler"
Emma Stone "Birdman"
Meryl Streep "Into the Woods"

Best Performance by a Younger Actor/Actress in a Film
Elle Fanning "Maleficent"
MacKenize Foy "Interstellar"
Chloe Grace Moretz "The Equalizer"
Tony Revolori "The Grand Budapest Hotel"
Kodi Smit-McPhee "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes"
Noah Wiseman "The Babadook"

Best Film Director
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu "Birdman"
James Gunn "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Doug Liman "Edge of Tomorrow"
Christopher Nolan "Interstellar"
Matt Reeves "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes"
Joe and Anthony Russo "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Bryan Singer "X-Men: Days of Future Past"

Best Film Writing
Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely and Ed Brubaker "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Wes Anderson and Hugo Guinness "The Grand Budapest Hotel"
James Gunn and Nicole Perlman "Guardians of the Galaxy"
Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson, & Guillermo del Toro "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies"
Damien Chazelle "Whiplash"

Best Film Editing
Captain America: The Winter Solider
Edge of Tomorrow
Guardians of the Galaxy

Best Film Production Design
Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Guardians of the Galaxy
Into the Woods

Best Film Music
Henry Jackman "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"
Michale Giacchino "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes"
Alexandre Desplat "Godzilla"
John Powell "How to Train Your Dragon 2"
Hans Zimmer "Interstellar"

Best Film Costume
Dracula Untold
Exodus: Gods and Kings
Guardians of the Galaxy
Into the Woods
X-Men: Days of Future Past

Best Film Makeup
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Dracula Untold
Guardians of the Galaxy
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
X-Men: Days of the Future Past

Best Film Visual Effects
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Edge of Tomorrow
Guardians of the Galaxy
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Best Independent Film Release
Grand Piano
I, Origins
A Most Violent Year
The One I Love
The Two Faces of January

Best International Film Release
Bird People
Force Majeure
Mood Indigo
The Railway Man
The Theory of Everything

Best Animated Film Release
Big Hero 6
The Boxtrolls
How to Train Your Dragon 2
The LEGO Movie
The Wind Rises

Best Network Television Series
The Blacklist
The Following
Person of Interest
Sleepy Hollow

Best Syndicated/Cable Television Series
American Horror Story: Freak Show
Falling Skies
The Strain
12 Monkeys
The Walking Dead

Best Limited Run Television Series
Bates Motel
From Dusk Till Dawn
Game of Thrones
The Last Ship
The Librarians

Best Superhero Adapted Television Series
Agent Carter
Agents of SHIELD
The Flash

Best Youth-Oriented Television Series
Doctor Who
The 100
Pretty Little Liars
Teen Wolf
The Vampire Diaries

Best Actor in a Television Series
Hugh Dancy "Hannibal"
Grant Gustin "The Flash"
Andrew Lincoln "The Walking Dead"
Tobias Menzies "Outlander"
Mads Mikkelson "Hannibal"
Noah Wyle "Falling Skies"

Best Actress in a Television Series
Haley Atwell "Agent Carter"
Caitrionia Balfe "Outlander"
Vera Farmiga "Bates Motel"
Jessica Lange "American Horror Story: Freak Show"
Rachel Nichols "Continuum"
Rebecca Romijn "The Librarians"

Best Supporting Actor in a Television Series
David Bradley "The Strain"
Laurence Fishburne "Hannibal"
Sam Heughan "Outlander"
Erik Knudsen "Continuum"
Norman Reedus "The Walking Dead"
Richard Sammel "The Strain"

Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series
Emilia Clarke "Game of Thrones"
Jenna Coleman "Doctor Who"
Caroline Dhavernas "Hannibal"
Lexa Doig "Continuum"
Emily Kinney "The Walking Dead"
Melissa McBride "The Walking Dead"

Best Performance by a Younger Actor/Actress in a Television Series
Camren Bicondova "Gotham"
Maxim Knight "Falling Skies"
Tyler Posey "Teen Wolf"
Chandler Riggs "The Walking Dead"
Holly Taylor "The Americans"
Maisie Williams "Game of Thrones"

Best Guest Performance in a Television Series
Dominic Cooper "Agent Carter"
Neil Patrick Harris "American Horror Story: Freak Show"
John Larroquette "The Librarians"
Wentworth Miller "The Flash"
Michael Pitt "Hannibal"
Andrew J. West "The Walking Dead"