Netflix News: Netflix Original Films selected for competition in Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Film Festival announced today its Official Selection which will include two Netflix original films. The titles that will be featured at the festival will launch everywhere Netflix is available in 2017.

Two of Netflix’s upcoming narrative, feature films – The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) and Okja – have been programmed in Official Selection, and will mark both their world premieres In Competition at the 70th Edition of the Film Festival. Okja marks the fifth time director Bong Joon Ho has been a guest of the Cannes Film Festival.

“The Cannes Film Festival’s commitment to giving an exceptional platform to distinct stories from the world’s most acclaimed auteurs is second to none. We are thrilled at the opportunity to premiere two of our highly-anticipated films from directors Noah Baumbach and Bong Joon Ho in this prestigious forum,” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix Chief Content Officer.

“I’m honored to be returning to Cannes, most especially this year with Okja and my partners at Netflix – it is wonderful to bring their first produced original film to premiere In Competition,” said Bong Joon Ho.

Written and directed by Noah Baumbach, The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) stars Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Dustin Hoffman, Elizabeth Marvel, Grace Van Patten and Emma Thompson, and is the intergenerational tale of adult siblings contending with the influence of their aging father. From IAC Films, The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) is produced by Scott Rudin, Baumbach, Lila Yacoub and Eli Bush.

Director Bong Joon Ho’s Okja stars Tilda Swinton, Jake Gyllenhaal, Paul Dano, Giancarlo Esposito, Steven Yeun, Lily Collins, Devon Bostick, Daniel Henshall, Shirley Henderson, Hee Bong Byun, Je Moon Yoon, Woo Sik Choi and newcomer An Seo Hyun. Written by Bong and Jon Ronson, Okja is the story of a young girl (An Seo Hyun) who must risk everything to prevent a powerful, multi-national company from kidnapping her best friend – a massive animal named ‘Okja’. The film was produced by Plan B Entertainment, Lewis Pictures and Kate Street Picture Company in association with Netflix.

Review: ‘BARNEY THOMSOM’ makes murder relatively complicated.

Gravitas Ventures Logobarney thomson posterDirected by and starring Robert Carlyle (The Full Monty, Trainspotting, 28 Weeks Later) in his directorial debut the film features Emma Thompson (Sense & Sensibility, Saving Mr. Banks), Ray Winstone (The Departed) and Tom Courtenay (Quartet).

Barney Thomson, awkward, diffident, Glasgow barber, lives a life of desperate mediocrity and his uninteresting life is about to go from 0 to 60 in five seconds, as he enters the grotesque and comically absurd world of the serial killer.

barney thomson robert carlyleRobert Carlyle is a real winner in his directorial debut. His portrayal of Barney is a wonderful mixture of neurotic, depressed, and pathetic Mama’s boy. A far cry from his Once Upon A Time role as Mr Gold. His skill as a director is plain to see. Barney Thomson has an upbeat and fun vibe. If you combined Baz Lurhmann‘s Strictly Ballroom, Richard Shepard’s Dom Hemingway, with a twist of Tarantino, you’ve got the eclectic style of Barney Thomson. Casting Emma Thompson as his mother, Cemolina, was pure genius. Their chemistry is unmatched. Wait until you see the prosthetics on Emma. The slightly overdone (and orange) nature of the makeup, creates the perfect backdrop for this larger than life character.

robert and emma thompson barney thomsonThe dialogue from Richard Cowan and Colin McLaren is quippy and hilarious. Utilizing the a beautifully absurd storyline combined with rapid fire Scottish rhetoric makes for the perfect combination in style and comedy. The soundtrack is incredible and Fabian Wagner‘s cinematography is stunning. It’s clear that Carlyle knows his stuff and I, for one,  look forward to any future endeavors. Barney Thomson is a hit.

BARNEY THOMSON On Demand February 2nd, 2016  and in theaters March 11th, 2016.

 

Directed By:                   Robert Carlyle (directorial debut)

Written By:                     Richard Cowan and Colin McLaren based on the novel by Douglas Lindsay

Produced By:                 John G. Lenic, Kaleena Kiff, Holly Brydson, Brian Coffey, Holly Brydson and Richard Cowan

Starring:                           Emma Thompson (Sense & Sensibility, Saving Mr. Banks), Robert Carlyle (The Full Monty, Trainspotting, 28 Weeks Later), Ray Winstone (The Departed), Tom Courtenay (Quartet)

Distributed by:             Gravitas Ventures

Running Time:              96 Minutes

Rating:                               NR

Review & Press Conference: ‘BURNT’ is a tasty dish we’ve had before

Burnt_Poster2_FINAL2Chef Adam Jones (Bradley Cooper) had it all – and lost it. A two-star Michelin rockstar with the bad habits to match, the former enfant terrible of the Paris restaurant scene did everything different every time out, and only ever cared about the thrill of creating explosions of taste. To land his own kitchen and that third elusive Michelin star though, he’ll need the best of the best on his side, including the beautiful Helene (Sienna Miller). BURNT is a remarkably funny and emotional story about the love of food, the love between two people, and the power of second chances.

BRADLEY COOPER stars in BURNT.

BRADLEY COOPER stars in BURNT.

Cooper is strong as ever, there is no denying that. Not only do you absolutely buy him as a skilled chef but you also find yourself engrossed in the background story of addiction. Not to mention he gets to show off his impeccable and charming French skills. Miller, once again, gives a solid performance as single mother Helene. Her great balance of strength and vulnerability make her a lovely foil for Cooper. There chemistry seems truly organic. This film is really an ensemble piece. You cannot create an environment such a kitchen without relying heavily on your entire team. Daniel Bruhl reads as one of the most passionate characters in the film, by far. Sam Keeley and Omar Sy, both inject life into this eclectic group of chefs. Other noteworthy performances come from Matthew Rhys and Emma Thompson. The cast was put through kitchen boot camp. they had become chefs on set. That is clear and wonderful to watch.

(L-R) BRADLEY COOPER and SIENNA MILLER star in BURNT.

(L-R) BRADLEY COOPER and SIENNA MILLER star in BURNT.

The film should do well with cooking enthusiasts and foodies alike. While the script is nothing revelatory, it does  give the audience an easy peak into the aftermath of addiction. BURNT is very much a film about second chances and self respect. The cast is strong, the food porn aspect is delightful. The comment on building the perfect meal and building the perfect relationship was certainly not lost on me. Go for Cooper, go for the acting, and definitely go for the food.

Bradley Cooper and Sienna Miller attended the film’s press conference with fellow stars Daniel Bruhl, Uma Thurman, and Sam Keeley. Moderated by the gregarious and world renowned chef Mario Batali, the press conference took place at The London Hotel in New York.

Burnt press conf table

NEW YORK, NY – OCTOBER 20: (L-R) Mario Batali, Daniel Bruhl, Sienna Miller, Bradley Cooper, Uma Thurma and Sam Keeley attend the “BURNT” New York Press Conference at The London Hotel on October 20, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew Toth/Getty Images for The Weinstein Company)

Burnt photo call

NEW YORK, NY – OCTOBER 20: (L-R) Mario Batali, Daniel Bruhl, Sienna Miller, Sam Keeley, Uma Thurman and Bradley Cooper attend the “BURNT” New York Press Conference at The London Hotel on October 20, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew Toth/Getty Images for The Weinstein Company)

Check out our audio from the conference. You can hear me make a comment and ask a question around the 22:00 minute mark. And yes, that is Bradley Cooper reacting to my profound statement. As for Mario Batali… I’m going to need him to moderate more often. What a gem.

BURNT is in theaters now!

Battle of The Actors Round 1 Matchups Part 2!

Untitled-1Brando, Newman, Hiddleston and Fassbender moved on in the brackets and Denzel Washington beat Leonardo DiCarpio in the bonus bracket by a slim margin..this weeks matchups we switch gears and have our first actress showdowns!

Brad’s Bracket:

Brad's Bracket- Lindsay Lohan vs Amanda Plummer

  • Amanda Plummer (83%, 25 Votes)
  • Lindsay Lohan (17%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 30

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Jeremy’s Bracket:

Jeremy's Bracket- Amy Adams vs Tilda Swinton

  • Amy Adams (61%, 20 Votes)
  • Tilda Swinton (39%, 13 Votes)

Total Voters: 33

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Liz’s Bracket:

Liz's Bracket: Emily Blunt vs Olivia Wilde

  • Emily Blunt (75%, 24 Votes)
  • Olivia Wilde (25%, 8 Votes)

Total Voters: 32

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Melissas’ Bracket

Melissa's Bracket- Juliette Binoche vs Julianne Moore

  • Julianne Moore (81%, 26 Votes)
  • Juliette Binoche (19%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 32

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Michael’s Bracket

Michael's Bracket- Anne Hathaway vs Emma Thompson

  • Anne Hathaway (55%, 18 Votes)
  • Emma Thompson (45%, 15 Votes)

Total Voters: 33

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‘EFFIE GRAY’ is a true story of a Victorian feminist.

Effie_NDovePoster

Courting is essentially a thing of the past in today’s society. In the Victorian age, it was the norm. Women joined the family of their husband and were better seen and not heard. Effie Gray was a real life young women wed to infamous art critic, John Ruskin. With dreams of entering a love filled marriage, Effie was thrown into high society under an overbearing mother-in-law and a frigid husband. Parties and showing social grace in a world where she was an object for show became increasingly more smothering and confusing. Ruskin was a progressive and outspoken art critic, which is what attracted Effie as a child. Although once married, she was discouraged from speaking her views, sexually rejected, and labeled a harlot by the one person she sought affection from. This virgin bride suffered years of emotional abuse until encountering a helpful soul and patron of the arts, Lady Eastlake. Effie_NDove_1183Without giving too much away, this film actually becomes a wonderful example of the power of a determined woman. In an age where divorce was simply not an option, Effie Gray finds a loophole allowing her move forward with someone who loves her deeply. The film is artistically crafted by Emma Thompson with careful detail of Victorian society alongside the world of art. One of the loveliest aspects of the film, visually, is the juxtaposition of paintings that reflect where Effie is on her emotional journey through time. Effie_NDove_1659Dakota Fanning is elegant and vulnerable as Effie. She has just enough tenacity to pull off a role with an arc such as this. Greg Wise is a stifled tyrant as John Ruskin. His temperament grows increasingly more horrid and he is borderline frightening at moments. Julie Walters, as Mrs. Ruskin, is just about as serpentine as one comes. A far cry from her famed roles as Mrs. Weasley in the beloved Harry Potter films, Walters is a crazed woman who needs to “cut the cord” already. The handsome Tom Sturridge plays Pre-Raphaelite Painter, John Everett Millais and the eventual object of Miss Gray’s affection. Emma Thompson portrays Lady Eastlake with an ease known to few actresses of our time. I could think of no other woman to play this part. Her watchful eye and skilled hand play such a massive part in this historical drama.Effie_NDove_1892Shot on location in Scotland, London, and Venice, EFFIE GRAY is a beautiful portrait of a young woman’s inner strength and the world she so desperately tried to escape. With a haunting score and outstanding performances by a true ensemble cast, EFFIE GRAY will inspire those with passion for art and life.

In EFFIE GRAY, Emma Thompson peers boldly inside the forbidden realms of Victorian society through the true story of the marriage of Effie Gray and renowned art critic John Ruskin, courageously exposing a secret world of unrequited passion hidden behind the veil of an opulent public life. Set in an era when neither divorce, nor gay marriage were an option, EFFIE GRAY is the story of a beautiful young woman coming of age, and finding her own voice in a world where women were expected to be seen but not heard. Within the lush environs of a world brimming with art, painting and high society and feverishly bucolic scenes of the Scottish countryside, EFFIE GRAY explores the intricate relationship between sexual intolerance, repression and desire which continue to permeate society today. In this impeccably crafted period drama, Thompson delicately and incisively probes the marital politics of the Victorian Era, and beyond.

Cast: Emma Thompson, Dakota Fanning, Tom Sturridge, David Suchet, Sir Derek Jakobi, Julie Walters, Riccardo Scamarcio and the legendary Claudia Cardinale.

The film opens nationwide on April 3.

Ms. Potts and Maurice Have Been Cast in Disney’s Live Action ‘Beauty and the Beast’

Beauty-and-the-Beast

 

Walt Disney Pictures has been busy lately! Not only did they find their Beast and Gaston, but now it appears they’ve found two more characters! Emma Thompson has joined the cast as Mrs. Potts and Kevin Kline as Belle’s father Maurice! Not to be forogtten, Josh Gad was also announced to be playing Lefou. As previously reported, Emma Watson and Dan Stevens will star as Belle and the Beast/Prince, respectively, and Luke Evans will play the role of Gaston.

The studio also announced that the film will be released in in 3D on March 17, 2017

Production begins in May at Shepperton Studios in London.

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