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March 5, 2017

Kenneth Lonergan Pens Op-Ed Defending Casey Affleck in College Newspaper

After winning the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay last week, “Manchester by the Sea” writer/director Kenneth Lonergan is now at work on a miniseries adaptation of “Howards End.” If you don’t want to wait that long to read something by the acclaimed scribe, there’s always the op-ed he just wrote for the Wesleyan Argus condemning an earlier piece about himself and “Manchester” star Casey Affleck.

READ MORE: Casey Affleck Addresses Sexual Harassment Allegations After Oscar Win

Affleck, who was accused of sexual harassment in 2010, denied the allegations and later settled a civil lawsuit out of court. The recent Argus article written by one Connor Aberle argued that Lonergan (who attended Wesleyan before transferring to NYU) has become “complicit” in Affleck’s alleged actions and that the university itself, which had been promoting Lonergan’s success, likewise shares in the blame for “the success of a perpetrator of sexual violence.”

Lonergan didn’t take kindly to that, writing that the article was “such a tangle of illogic, misinformation and flat-out slander that only the author’s presumed youth can possibly excuse his deeply offensive display of ignorance, and warped PC-fueled sense of indignation.”

READ MORE: Kenneth Lonergan on the Quiet Extremes of ‘Manchester by the Sea’: Awards Spotlight

“Somebody as interested in actual as opposed to merely vocalized social justice as Mr Aberle presumably is, should unwind his tangled, immoral chain of reasoning and start over at the fundamental precept that an allegation is not an indictment,” continues the filmmaker. “Nor can it be treated as such by any ethical person living in a democratic society supposedly based on the rule of law.” Read the entire scathing op-ed here.

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Source: IndieWire film

March 5, 2017

Box Office Takeaways: ‘Logan’ Is R-Rated Marvel As ‘Get Out’ Also Roars

The lagging 2017 box office got a big boost as “Logan” (20th Century Fox), starring Hugh Jackman as Wolverine — the first of three anticipated March juggernauts — opened like a summer franchise blockbuster. The offshoot from the “Wolverine” subset of X-Men movies marks the first R-rating for the storied franchise.

Even better, it wasn’t the only upbeat news this post-Oscars weekend. Hitchcockian thriller “Get Out” (Universal), the Blumhouse sleeper from Jordan Peele, dropped only  22 per cent on its second weekend, which is stunning.

The Shack

The Shack


And Lionsgate, fresh off eight wins from “La La Land” and “Hacksaw Ridge” on Oscar night, returned with the surprisingly strong faith-based “The Shack,” starring “Hidden Figures” Oscar-nominee and Saturday Night Live host Octavia Spencer.

The post-Oscar results were mixed to positive, as two of the top category winners are already available for home viewing. “Moonlight” (streaming and available on DVD/Blu-Ray) had both the widest break and best single weekend gross after almost five months in release.

(Check out my Oscar box office wrap here.)

The Top Ten

1. Logan (20th Century Fox) NEW – Cinemascore: A-; Metacritic: 77; Est. budget: $97 million

$85,300,000 in 4,071 theaters; PTA (per theater average): $20,953; Cumulative: $85,300,000

2. Get Out (Universal) Week 2 – Last weekend #1

$26,111,000 (-22%) in 2,938 theaters (+157); PTA: $8,884; Cumulative: $75,954,000

3. The Shack (Lionsgate) NEW – Cinemascore: A; Metacritic: 31; Est. budget: $5 million

$16,100,000 in 2,888 theaters; PTA: $2,888; Cumulative: $16,100,000

4. The LEGO Batman Movie (Warner Bros.) Week 4 – Last weekend #2

$11,650,000 (-39%) in 3,656 theaters (-401); PTA: $3,187; Cumulative: $148,632,000

5. Before I Fall (Open Road) NEW – Cinemascore: B; Metacritic: 58; Est. budget: $5 million

$4,949,000 in theaters; PTA: $2,109,000; Cumulative: $4,949,000

6. John Wick: Chapter 2 (Lionsgate) Week 4 – Last weekend #3

$4,725,000 (-50%) in 2,475 theaters (-479); PTA: $1,909; Cumulative: $82,866,000

7. Hidden Figures (20th Century Fox) Week 11- Last weekend #6

$3,825,000 (-34%) in 1,582 theaters (-440); PTA: $2,418; Cumulative: $158,765,000

8. The Great Wall (Universal) Week 3 – Last weekend #4

$3,507,000 (-62%) in 2,314 theaters (-1,014); PTA: $1,512; Cumulative: $41,268,000

9. Fifth Shades Darker (Universal) Week 4 – Last weekend #5

$3,485,000 (-55%) in 2,205 theaters (-1,011); PTA: $1,587; Cumulative: $109,912,000

10. La La Land (Lionsgate) Week 13 – Last weekend #8

$2,975,000 (-37%) in 1,411 theaters (-322); PTA: $1,411; Cumulative: $145,684,000

The Takeaways

This Could Be the Start of Something Big

The initial weekend Top Ten estimate comes to $163 million. That’s up 13 per cent from the first March weekend last year ($21 million). But even better, last year’s saw the release of “Zootopia,” one of the spring’s top hits.

Unlike other recent weeks with top hits, for once the aggregate also improved. That came with the help of a spectacular hold for “Get Out,” a decent opening for “The Shack” and continued interest in “The LEGO Batman Movie” (Warner Bros.). Their overlapping audiences do have differing appeal, and the weekend’s totals came from multiple cylinders connecting at the same time.

Each of the four releases can be typed — comic book, horror, faith-based, animated — but they all expand from their initial core appeal. “Logan” has film noir and western genre elements. “Get Out” has clearly tapped comedy and social issues. “The Shack” has its roots in tragedy and crime and boasts a multiracial cast including Spencer and Sam Worthington. “LEGO Batman” is animated and leans on a brand-name superhero.

And all four share something that has elevated many hits — familiar turf, original treatment. It’s a great start for a month that will include “Kong: Skull Island” and the live action “Beauty and the Beast” in the next two weeks, both potentially derivative projects that could break through with fresh takes.

So far so good.

DF-18976 - Hugh Jackman stars as Logan/Wolverine in LOGAN. Photo Credit: Ben Rothstein.


Photo Credit: Ben Rothstein

“Logan” Pays Off

The tenth film in Marvel’s X-Men series and the third in Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine standalones is the first with an R-rating. Though Fox last year hit pay dirt with “Deadpool,” its tone was much different with Ryan Reynolds as its potty-mouth star and a sexy rom-com tone different from most Marvel entries.

The R rating, and the edgier freedom that came with it have revitalized the series a bit. Unadjusted numbers overstate the performance, impressive as it is. Putting all ten films in the series in 2017 dollars, it actually only comes in at seventh best. It did better than the second “Wolverine” film, which in 2013 opened to the equivalent of $58 million. That’s a big increase. It also is significantly better than last year’s main series entry “X-Men: Apocalypse,” which also had the advantage of a Memorial Day weekend opening.

With so many sequels, reboots and similar needing to connect in the months and years ahead, this turnaround is a crucial aspect of this unexpectedly high opening.

“Get Out”

“Get Out” Soars

When “Get Out” last weekend grew from its initial $30 million estimate to an actual $33.5 million total, something special was happening. Its weekday numbers added another 50 per cent to the initial take, quite good for a non-summer period.

Even so, the normal drop would be about 40 per cent, better than most front-loaded genre films. So a 22 per cent drop is phenomenal. And that’s before factoring in competition and overlap from “Logan,” as well as shared appeal to African-American audiences who are part of the faith-based crowd that flocked to “The Shack.”

At $76 million so far, and with an expanded audience, this could end up reaching a $140 million or higher total before its through, on a $5 million initial budget. That’s about where the Blumhouse “Split” will end up domestically.  That’s a staggering two-film result. Add the acclaim for both films and the message is clear: good reviews don’t only help Oscar-bait movies, but mass audiences ones like “Get Out” and “Logan.”

Lionsgate Crashes the Faith-Based Genre

In recent years, Sony with such faith entries as “Heaven Is For Real,” “Miracles From Heaven” and “War Room” has cornered the market on contemporary Christian stories about middle American characters in crisis and finding answers to their prayers in faith.

Lionsgate has over the years shown the ability to create trends (they were dominant in the Young Adult field) and create unlikely original franchises (“John Wick,” “Now You See Me”). So it isn’t surprising they leaped onto Sony’s turf and scored a success.

Among similar films, “The Shack” stands as second only to “Heaven” which opened to around $23 million in 2017 figures three years ago. Like that film, this is based on a bestseller, boasts an eclectic cast. Their marketing emphasized elements that in other contexts might feel like fantasy genre.

The secret sauce — and it shows how top creative people see the virtues in these films — includes a producer, Gil Netter, who is a two-time Oscar Best Picture nominee for his work on “The Life of Pi” and “The Blind Side.” He oversaw a film with a $5 million budget, and different scale particularly from “Pi.”

The mediocre reviews didn’t appear before opening day, but the audience reaction is quite good, judging from an A Cinemascore and a healthy 11 per cent second full day uptick. Expect this to reach a four-time multiple and a total ultimate gross of $60 million or more.

“Before I Fall”

Two Positive Notes for “Before I Fall”

Ry Russo-Young’s well-received Sundance Young Adult adaptation, a teenage girl variation on “Groundhog Day,” came in a bit under $5 million, not enough likely to project it into a success. Teens are a notoriously tough group to reach with marketing.

Fact is, the genre’s appeal to young women seems to be diminishing. “Before I Fall” (Open Road) managed to eke out a fifth place showing. It did however best the first weekend for better-reviewed “Edge of Seventeen” last fall. That STX film opened to $4.7 million vs. $4.9 million for “Fall.”

“Fall” also had the best Saturday pickup among the three openers, and at 16 per cent about double the second day for “Edge,” which suggests strong word of mouth.

Source: IndieWire film

March 5, 2017

Rose McGowan Composed an Alternative National Anthem Called ‘Planet 9’ — Listen

Dazed recently asked 12 different artists to compose alternative national anthems, Rose McGowan among them. The actress, director and singer responded to that call to action with the spoken-word piece “Planet 9,” a feminist anthem she describes as a “new place where we are all safe and loved.” Listen below.

READ MORE: Rose McGowan Calls on Hollywood to Stop Working With Sexual ‘Offenders’

Here’s McGowan’s statement about her song: “I feel like women have not been able to properly mourn what it means to lose to this man and all men, continually. This one feels particularly vicious, but what he’s about is what we’ve been saying all along. The system is rigged against women. I wanted to give voice to our emotions and thoughts. I’ve spoken to so many women about how we are not represented in the media in the aftermath of the election.

“Trans bathrooms, while important, get more coverage than the systematic dismantling of Roe v. Wade which will directly affect women by literally killing us. So, here it is, my national anthem. Planet 9 for a new place where we are all safe and loved, but we must fight for this place. Our lives depend on it. I ask that when people listen, they do so with their eyes shut. Listening twice is also recommended.”

READ MORE: Rose McGowan Reveals She Was Raped By A Hollywood Executive

McGowan currently stars on “Chosen” and will next be seen in the film “Lower Bay.” Listen to all 12 new anthems here.

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Source: IndieWire film

March 5, 2017

Film School Crash Course: The 10 Most Effective Editing Moments of All Time

There are very few things that you can learn in film school that can’t be learned online in some form or another. The only problem is that tracking …
Source: CW’s Flipboard Feed

March 5, 2017

Video: How to Turn Old Soviet Glass into a DIY Tilt-Shift Lens for Just $30

Watch a vintage Helios lens morph into a tilt-shifting wonder with just $30 worth of materials.

Mathieu Stern, the Weird Lens Master himself, is at it again. In his latest video, he takes apart two vintage Soviet Helios lenses and gives them tilt-shift capabilities, similar to popular Lensbaby tilt-shift lenses, like the $300 Edge 80 Optic, all for just $30. The results, you might find, are absolutely stunning, so check out the video below and continue on to see some of the images Stern took with this interesting little DIY lens.

The Helios 103 and Helios 44-2 are the two $20 vintage Soviet lenses that Stern used for this experiment. After carefully taking them apart, he fitted them with a $10 rubber bellow, which allowed him to focus freely as one would with any conventional tilt-shift lens.

And the results are pretty breathtaking, especially considering they were captured with a $30 DIY lens.

Read More

Source: NoFilmSchool

March 5, 2017

Watch: This Is What Happens When You Sync Your Frame Rate with a Helicopter Rotor

No, it’s not a magic trick. It’s just clever cinematography.

If you perfectly sync your camera’s frame rate with the rotation of a helicopter’s rotor, some pretty interesting things happen. YouTuber Chris Chris has shared a video that shows a helicopter taking off, which sounds like nothing special, but because the camera that captured the scene had all the right settings, the blades of the aircraft appear to be completely still. Check out this crazy video below:

If you’re wondering how this trickery works, it’s actually relatively simple. The main source of confusion is whether it’s the frame rate or shutter speed that makes the effect possible, but both are actually necessary to pull it off. In an online discussion about the phenomenon, an anonymous reader broke it down:

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Source: NoFilmSchool

March 4, 2017

Video: 15 Beats of a Classic Story Structure Explained

How do Hollywood screenwriters structure a screenplay?

There’s no such thing as “the right way” to write a script, but there are certainly well-trodden paths that countless professional screenwriters take to craft certain story structures. And though these structures might seem overused or formulaic, they do provide a great framework for new writers to cut their teeth on. In this video from The Film Look, we get to take a look at Joseph Campbell’s Monomyth, or The Hero’s Journey, which is one of the most common story templates, to not only learn what it is and how it works, but to also see how it unfolds in other films as well.

Maybe the best way to start talking about this is by explaining exactly what a “beat” is. Well, a beat is the smallest unit of measurement in a screenplay represented by an event, major decision, or important piece of new information. A beat sheet, or as they call it in the video, a “beat list,” is a breakdown of every important moment that occurs in your screenplay in the order in which they occur.

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Source: NoFilmSchool

March 4, 2017

Watch: Here’s a Nifty Trick to Instantly Turn Any Lens into a Macro Lens

If you need to get some extreme close ups, don’t buy an expensive macro lens until you try this little trick.

Getting close, and I mean really close, to a subject requires a macro lens. The problem with that is these kinds of lenses tend to cost a pretty penny if they’re high-end, which may not seem like a reasonable investment if you only need to get a few extreme close ups for your film. But, you may not have to; you might be able to shoot some macro shots for free without having to buy a new lens. In this episode of Indy Mogul’s series Saturday Morning Special, cinematographer JP Caldeano, also known as Cinematic J on YouTube, shows you how to turn any lens into a macro lens using this super simple trick.

Let’s end the suspense. The trick is to turn your damn lens around! If you’ve been in the film/photography business for some time, you’re probably familiar with this technique, but for those of you who are just starting out, this might be the revelation that changes your cinematographic approach from here on out. (Maybe I’m overselling it a little…)

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Source: NoFilmSchool

March 3, 2017

Cyber Teleportation Tokyo at SXSW


Content provided by NTT

Get ready to go to Tokyo! This year at SXSW, NTT will present CYBER TELEPORTATION TOKYO, a concert featuring 2017 Grammy Award nominated Japanese DJ starRo performing live in Austin. At the same time, Japanese female dance duo AyaBambi, rapper Ryohu (KANDYTOWN), singer Taichi Mukai, and Cheeky Parade will perform simultaneously in Tokyo, and NTT’s technology will bring Tokyo to Texas for an unforgettable experience.

This remote J-Pop concert will take place on March 13 at Japan Factory.

Upon passing through the door, attendees will be magically transported to a city nine time zones and 6,560 miles away! Attendees will experience the most potent form of digital entertainment in the world using powerful live-streaming and cutting-edge and audio-visual technologies.

This live experience is made possible by NTT’s Immersive Telepresence Technology Kirari! alongside a high-speed communications networking technology.

Pairing the Kirari! real-time image capture capability with low-latency synchronized multimedia transmission, NTT will provide lightning-fast image capture from the Tokyo video feed to project the distant artists on transparent double-sided screens in a three-dimensional spatial layout. This will transform the Japan Factory into a venue that will tear through the limits of space and time.

The network infrastructure used for this showcase was established using NTT’s network testbed GEMnet2, in cooperation with Internet2 (a consortium of US universities providing an advanced networking environment), LEARN (Lonestar Education and Research Network) and the University of Texas System and Greater Austin Area Telecommunication Network.

Monday, March 13
10:30pm – 11:30pm
Trinity Warehouse
99 Trinity St.

Photo courtesy of NTT

Related News:

The post Cyber Teleportation Tokyo at SXSW appeared first on SXSW.

Source: SxSW Film

March 3, 2017

The Daily Chord Weekly Recap – Friday, March 3

SXSW Daily Chord | dailychord.com

Reports of global growth in recorded music revenues and record numbers of streaming subscribers marked the week in music. Future continued his unique rise to the top of the charts. CD players are disappearing from cars, and Nine Inch Nails surprised fans with an odd package.

Keep up to date with music news from around the web with the Daily Chord email newsletter. Subscribe today to upgrade your inbox.

Monday, February 27

Tuesday, February 28

Wednesday, March 1

Thursday, March 2

Friday, March 3

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The post The Daily Chord Weekly Recap – Friday, March 3 appeared first on SXSW.

Source: SxSW Music