Thursday, December 13, 2012

2013 Golden Globes nominations announced

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. -- Steven Spielberg's Civil War epic "Lincoln" led the Golden Globes on Thursday with seven nominations, among them best drama, best director for Spielberg and acting honors for Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones.

Tied for second-place with five nominations each, including best drama are Ben Affleck's Iran hostage-crisis thriller "Argo" and Quentin Tarantino's slave-turned-bounty-hunter tale "Django Unchained."

Other best-drama nominees are Ang Lee's shipwreck story "Life of Pi" and Kathryn Bigelow's Osama bin Laden manhunt thriller "Zero Dark Thirty."

Nominated for best musical or comedy were: the British retiree adventure "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel"; the Victor Hugo musical "Les Miserables"; the first-love tale "Moonrise Kingdom"; the fishing romance "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen"; and the lost-soul romance "Silver Linings Playbook."

Globe attention can give contenders a boost for Hollywood's top honors, the Academy Awards, whose nominations come out Jan. 10, three days before the Globe ceremony.

The directing lineup came entirely from dramatic films, with Affleck, Bigelow, Lee, Spielberg and Tarantino all in the running.

"It's very gratifying to get this many nominations from the HFPA for a film I worked so hard on and am so passionate about. I look forward to having fun at the Golden Globes with my cast mates and fellow nominees," Tarantino said in a statement.

Filmmakers behind best musical or comedy nominees were shut out for director, including Tom Hooper for "Les Miserables" and David O. Russell for "Silver Linings Playbook."

Along with Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln in Spielberg's epic, best dramatic actor contenders are Richard Gere as a deceitful Wall Streeter in "Arbitrage"; John Hawkes as a polio victim trying to lose his virginity in "The Sessions"; Joaquin Phoenix as a Navy veteran under the sway of a cult leader in "The Master"; and Denzel Washington as a boozy airline pilot in "Flight."

Dramatic-actress nominees are Jessica Chastain as a CIA analyst hunting Osama bin Laden in "Zero Dark Thirty"; Marion Cotillard as a whale biologist beset by tragedy in "Rust and Bone"; Helen Mirren as Alfred Hitchcock's strong-minded wife in "Hitchcock"; Naomi Watts as a woman caught up in a devastating tsunami in "The Impossible"; and Rachel Weisz as a woman ruined by an affair in "The Deep Blue Sea."

For musical or comedy actress, the lineup is Emily Blunt as a consultant for a Mideast sheik in "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen"; Judi Dench as a widow who retires overseas in "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel"; Jennifer Lawrence as young widow in a new romance in "Silver Linings Playbook"; Maggie Smith as an aging singer in a retirement home in "Quartet"; and Meryl Streep as a wife trying to save her marriage in "Hope Springs."

Nominees for musical or comedy actor are Jack Black as a solicitous mortician in "Bernie"; Bradley Cooper as a troubled man fresh out of a mental hospital in "Silver Linings Playbook"; Hugh Jackman as Hugo's long-suffering hero Jean Valjean in "Les Miserables"; Ewan McGregor as a British fisheries expert in "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen"; and Bill Murray as Franklin Roosevelt in "Hyde Park on Hudson."

Competing for supporting actor are Alan Arkin as a Hollywood producer helping a CIA operation in "Argo"; Leonardo DiCaprio as a cruel slave owner in "Django Unchained"; Philip Seymour Hoffman as a mesmerizing cult leader in "The Master"; Tommy Lee Jones as firebrand abolitionist Thaddeus Stevens in "Lincoln"; and Christoph Waltz as a genteel bounty hunter in "Django Unchained."

The supporting-actress picks are Amy Adams as a cult leader's devoted wife in "The Master"; Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln in "Lincoln"; Anne Hathaway as a mother fallen into prostitution in "Les Miserables"; Helen Hunt as a sexual surrogate in "The Sessions"; and Nicole Kidman as a trashy mistress of a Death Row inmate in "The Paperboy."

Kidman was a dual nominee, also in the running as best actress in a TV movie or miniseries for "Hemingway & Gellhorn." ''Quartet" star Smith also had a second nomination, for supporting actress in a TV series, miniseries or movie for "Downton Abbey."

Snubbed completely was the low-budget critical darling "Beasts of the Southern Wild," which won top honors at last January's Sundance Film Festival. Also shut out was the stripper hit "Magic Mike," which had good buzz for supporting player Matthew McConaughey, who also earned acclaim for roles in "Bernie" and "Killer Joe."

With three nominations, "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen" was a surprise, since the film had virtually no awards buzz behind it.

Globe acting winners often go on to receive the same prizes at the Oscars. All four Oscar winners last season -- lead performers Streep of "The Iron Lady" and Jean Dujardin of "The Artist" and supporting players Octavia Spencer of "The Help" and Christopher Plummer of "Beginners" -- won Globes first.
The Globes have a spotty record predicting which films might go on to earn the best-picture prize at the Academy Awards, however.

The Globes feature two best-film categories, one for drama and one for musical or comedy. Last year's Oscar best-picture winner, "The Artist," preceded that honor with a Globe win for best musical or comedy.
But in the seven years before that, only one winner in the Globe best-picture categories -- 2008's "Slumdog Millionaire" -- followed up with an Oscar best-picture win.

Along with 14 film prizes, the Globes hand out awards in 11 television categories.

The nominees for best television drama series are: "Boardwalk Empire," ''Breaking Bad," ''Downton Abbey," ''Homeland" and "The Newsroom." And the nods for best TV comedy series are: "The Big Bang Theory," ''Episodes," ''Girls," ''Modern Family" and "Smash."

Jodie Foster, a two-time Oscar and Globe winner for "The Accused" and "The Silence of the Lambs," will receive the group's Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement at the Jan. 13 ceremony.

There will be some friendly rivalry among the hosts at the Globe ceremony, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Both were nominated for best actress in a TV comedy, Fey for "30 Rock" and Poehler for "Parks and Recreation."

Fey and Poehler follow Ricky Gervais, who was host the last three years and rubbed some Hollywood egos the wrong way with sharp wisecracks about A-list stars and the foreign press association itself.

With stars sharing drinks and dinner, the Globes have a reputation as one of Hollywood's loose and unpredictable awards gatherings. Winners occasionally have been off in the restroom when their names were announced, and there have been moments of onstage spontaneity such as Jack Nicholson mooning the crowd or Ving Rhames handing over his trophy to fellow nominee Jack Lemmon.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

"Lincoln," "Les Miserables" lead SAG film nominees

LOS ANGELES The actors of drama "Lincoln," musical "Les Miserables" and comedy "Silver Linings Playbook" led nominations for the Screen Actors Guild film awards on Wednesday, winning four nominations apiece, including best ensemble cast.

Joining them among nominees for best movie cast - the organization's top prize - were the actors of Iranian hostage drama "Argo" and British comedy "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel."

Thriller "Zero Dark Thirty" about the U.S. hunt for Osama bin Laden was left out of the best ensemble cast picks but Jessica Chastain was nominated best actress for her performance as a CIA agent.

The awards from the Screen Actors Guild, or SAG, are among the most-watched honors during Hollywood film awards season leading up to the Academy Awards because actors make up one of the largest voting groups for the Oscars.

As a result, SAG nominees usually figure prominently on many ballots by members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which hands out the Oscars in February.

The SAG awards will be given out in Los Angeles on January 27 in a live telecast on the TBS and TNT networks.

"Lincoln," director Steven Spielberg's movie about U.S. President Abraham Lincoln's battle to outlaw slavery, brought nominations on Wednesday for lead actor Daniel Day-Lewis and supporting actors Sally Field as his wife, and Tommy Lee Jones.

Hugh Jackman was nominated for best actor while Anne Hathaway was chosen for her supporting role in the movie adaptation of hit stage musical "Les Miserables."

Other actors nominated on Wednesday included the stars of quirky comedy "Silver Linings Playbook" - Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Robert DeNiro - and John Hawkes and Helen Hunt for the independent movie "The Sessions" about a disabled man and his sex therapist.

One of the biggest surprises was "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," the story of a group of elderly Britons who retire to a ramshackle Indian hotel. The film, which stars Judi Dench, Tom Wilkinson and Bill Nighy, had two nominations - best ensemble and best supporting actress for Maggie Smith.

Smith also was nominated in SAG's television category for her role as a sarcastic aristocrat in period drama "Downton Abbey." The show also was among the picks for ensemble acting in the TV category.

Other TV drama nominations went to the casts of "Boardwalk Empire," "Homeland," "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad."

In TV comedy, old favorites "30 Rock," "Glee," "The Big Bang Theory," "Modern Family," "Nurse Jackie" and "The Office" were nominated.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Counterfeit DVD Sites Among Those Seized in Fed Shutdown

During Cyber Monday the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE), working with several domestic and international law enforcement agencies, took down more than 130 Internet domains accused of selling counterfeit merchandise.

While a majority of the sites dealt in illegal sporting goods and more than two dozen were selling knock-off Louis Vuitton merchandise, ICE nabbed a handful of sites that were dealing in bogus DVD product, including, and Federal agents made undercover purchases of the DVDs to confirm they were pirated, ICE said in a statement.

Visitors to those sites today are greeted with a notice from ICE that the domains have been seized.
An ICE spokesman said the European Police Office (Europol) may have shut down more home entertainment-related sites outside of those registered in the United States. A Europol spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

“This operation is a great example of the tremendous cooperation between ICE and our international partners at the [National Intellectual Property Rights, or IPR] Center,” said ICE director John Morton. “Our partnerships enable us to go after criminals who are duping unsuspecting shoppers all over the world. This is not an American problem, it is a global one.”

ICE worked with law enforcement agencies in Belgium, Denmark, France, Romania and the United Kingdom to shut down the sites.

It’s the third straight year the American government has taken the lead on shutting down counterfeit products online during the Thanksgiving shopping holiday. However, it’s the first year the U.S. government actively sought cooperation from foreign agencies to combat dubious retail websites.

Dubbed “Operation in Our Sites,” the annual endeavor has shuttered more than 1,600 sites accused of dealing in counterfeit goods since 2010, with dozens of those sites selling pirated discs.

“Europol became a member of the IPR Center this year, and I am glad to be able to announce these operational successes,” said Rob Wainwright, director of Europol. “IPR theft is not a harmless and victimless crime. It can cause serious health and safety risks, and it undermines our economy.”

ICE and its partners are seeking to prosecute the people who run the shuttered sites, and are specifically marking those who used eBay-owned PayPal to facilitate transactions.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the opportunity to … shut down criminals targeting our customers and our brand just as the holiday season takes off,” said Tod Cohen, VP and deputy general counsel of government relations for eBay.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Media Crusade Against Chick-Fil-A Continues

Chick-Fil-A President Dan Cathy stated that he was “guilty as charged” when it came to supporting the traditional family, and commented on a radio show that “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say: You know, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’”

That’s tantamount to heresy in Hollywood and in New York and D.C. newsrooms. The media have proven themselves in the tank for same sex marriage, and Chick-Fil-A is learning what it means to cross them.

Media Join Fight Against Chick-Fil-A

On July 19, CNN reporter Alison Kosik acknowledged that efforts to boycott Chick-Fil-A are not new, noting that: “It’s not the first time that people have called for a boycott of the restaurant chain.” Lately, however, media outlets have deployed their resources to help the left destroy the Christian chicken chain.

MSNBC host Thomas Roberts declared that any supporter of gay marriage eating at Chick-Fil-A was a “Chicken-eating Judas.” Dean Reynolds, reporting for CBS ‘This Morning’ on July 27, declared on air, “At Chick-Fil-A, the menu offers up sandwiches, nuggets, and strips, but to critics these days, it also includes a side order of bigotry.” ABC also played up the Chick-Fil-A controversy.

San Francisco outlet SFist even linked the sudden death of Chick-Fil-A’s PR head Donald Perry to the fanatical Westboro Baptist Church, including the phrase “God Hates Flacks” in a headline.

Politicians supporting Chick-Fil-A also faced the media’s wrath and mockery. CNN, introducing a segment showing Sarah Palin eating at Chick-Fil-A, played the song “Stupid Girls.” (A CNN spokesman claimed the song choice was unintentional.) Gawker’s Rich Juzwiak whipped himself into a frenzy over Sarah Palin’s visit to the chicken chain, snarling: “On Friday, Sarah Palin tweeted/Facebooked a picture of herself and her husband in a Chick-Fil-A looking so fucking happy. They're way happier than the oldest gay couple in America on their wedding day. Sarah and Todd are beaming hateful joy. It's really visceral.”

Descent into Lunacy

Comedy outlets couldn’t resist poking fun at Chick-Fil-A. Jon Stewart made light of the incident on the July 23 Daily Show, snarking: “Wow, open your eyes owner of Chick-Fil-A,” he said. “You are being such an asshole that even Boston won’t tolerate you.” The Onion published a satirical article about a Chick-Fil-A holding a press conference introducing a new ‘homophobic sandwich’ called the “Queer-Hatin’ Cordon Bleu.”

But several media stories and celebrity responses to the Chick-Fil-A were so bizarre they only looked like comedy.

Unhinged comedienne Roseanne Barr launched anatomically incorrect, expletive-laden broadsides against Chick-Fil-A, ranting: “S--- my d--- chick filet nazi f-----g pricks” and “Giving ur kds Cancer from processed fast food is child abuse.” 

The Huffington Post also displayed similarly warped judgment regarding the chicken chain. Dominick Scudera wrote an unfunny satire piece displaying his breathtaking ignorance of the Bible, obliviously concluding his piece: “And I thank the Lord that I live in a country where fast food is a place of judgment and where chicken sandwiches bring me closer to the Almighty God.”

The Huffington Post also featured Mark Pettit’s self-righteous five-step plan to stop Chick-Fil-A’s “public relations nightmare.” The self-proclaimed “crisis communications expert” lectured the company: “Going forward no ‘anti’ anything groups (as in anti-gay marriage) should receive funds from the company. Not one cent. Not one chicken biscuit.” Instead, he advised the company to donate up to $5 million to build a National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta.

So, in Petitt’s mind, the heads of Chick-Fil-A need to explicitly reject the Biblical principles that the company was built upon and alienate the customers who support traditional marriage in order to resolve the crisis. Perhaps the “crisis” expert should check Facebook. Former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee called for ‘Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day’ on Wednesday, Aug. 1. As of this writing, over 500,000 people have pledged to visit a Chick-Fil-A that day.

Even Huckabee’s rally in support of the chicken chain drew bizarre media criticism. Washington Post opinion columnist Dana Milbank criticized Huckabee for the move, opining: “His defense of the fast-food restaurant will make Chick-Fil-A a fat target in the culture wars and will further divide Americans.” Milbank conveniently ignores all the vitriol spewed at the company by the left – and the fact that liberal politicians have been gunning for the company, as well


ICVM (International Christian Visual Media) 2012 Crown Award Winners

The Crown Awards are designed to recognize excellence in production and content of films and videos that are created to reflect Christian values in a secular world. Any member producer can nominate a film. This includes producers around the world who are working in visual media in any way. A project can be nominated for any of the applicable categories.
List of Nominees & Winners

  • The Forgotten Martryr: Lady Jane Grey - Joe & Jerica Henline - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • A Fuller Heart - Sean O'Conner - Asbury University - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • One Split Second -  James Dickenson - Taylor University - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Good to Praise - ICVM (International Christian Visual Media) 2012 Crown Award WinnersSean O'Connor - Asbury University
  • Journey's End - Ashley Zahorian - Regent University
  • Love, Jack - Taylor Herky - BIOLA University
  • The Good Fight - Ryan Mickens - Taylor University
  • Twirl - Nate Winkler - Asbury University
  • Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right - Jennifer Gibbens
  • Honor Begins at Home - Kendrick Brothers - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • The Foundations - Answers In Genesis - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Frontier Boys: Explore - Grooters Productions - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Deditos - Noah & The Flood - Asociacion Vina
  • Israel, The Womb of the Kingdom of God on Earth - Hatikvah Film Trust
  • Watch & Talk - Grooters Productions
  • Torchlighters: The William Booth Story - Vision Video - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Jesus: He Lived Among Us - Vision Video - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • I Dig Dinosaurs - Vision Video - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Deditos - Noah & The Flood - Asociacion Vina
  • Deditos - The Children of Abraham - Asociacion Vina
  • For the Glory - 1 Voice Films
  • Milltown Pride - Unusual Films - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • For the Glory - 1 Voice Films - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Jesus: He Lived Among Us - Vision Video - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Prodigal - Lost Coin Productions
  • Wholehearted - Charl Folscher - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • When We're Together - Kendrick Brothers - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Crimedoc - Family 7 - GOLD CROWN WARD
  • Discoveries of Israel - DBM Communications - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • City of David - DBM Communications - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Check This Out - Answers In Genesis - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Donata Wenders - ERF Media - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Meet Hiram Edson - ERF Media - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • The Foundations - Answers In Genesis - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Torchlighters: The William Booth Story - Vision Video - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • People of Faith - Vision Video - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • City to City Europe - AVK The Netherlands
  • History of Christian Worship: Pt 4 The Music - Vision Video
  • Singles & Stinking Thinking - Crown Entertainment
  • We Believe in Jesus - Third Milennium Ministries
  • Through A Lens Darkly: Grief, Loss & CS Lewis - Vision Video - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • I Dig Dinosaurs - Answers In Genesis - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • A Call to India - Charl folscher - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • City to City Europe - ZVK The Netherlands
  • Donata Wenders - ERF Media
  • History of Christian Worship: Pt 4 The Music - Vision Video
  • Mightier Than the Sword - Christian Television Associaion
  • See That Justice is Done - ZVK The Netherlands
  • Undaunted - DBM Communications - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Taking the Hill: A Warrior's Journey Home - Vision Video - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • People of Faith - Vision Video - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • The Foundations - Answeres In Genesis
  • City of David - DBM Communications
  • Discoveries of Israel - DBM Communications
  • Israel, The Womb of the Kingdom of God on Earth - Hatikvah Film Trust
  • Deditos - The Children of Abraham - Asociacion Vina - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Deditos - Noah & The Flood - Asociacion Vina - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Donata Wenders - ERF Media - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • Courageous - Kendrick Brothers - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Trade of Innocents - Dean River Productions - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • 25 Hill - Echolight Studios - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • 1 Message - Echolight Studios
  • For the Glory - 1 Voice Films
  • Heaven's Rain - Echolight Studios
  • Milltown Pride - Unusual Films
  • Prodigal - Lost Coin Productions
  • Undaunted - DBM Communications
  • Undaunted - DBM Communications - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Taking the Hill: A Warrior's Journey Home - Vision Video - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • Torchlighters: Theh William booth Story - Vision Video - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • A Call to India - Charl Folscher
  • City to City Europe - ZVK The Netherlands
  • Courageous - Kendrick Brothers
  • For the Glory - 1 Voice Films
  • Jesus: He Lived Among Us - Vision Video
  • Mightier Than The Sword - Christian Television Association
  • Milltown Pride - Unusual Films
  • See That Justice is Done - ZVK The Netherlands
  • Trade of Innocents - Dean River Productions - GOLD CROWN AWARD
  • Courageous - Kendrick Brothers - SILVER CROWN AWARD
  • 25 Hill - Echolight Studios - BRONZE CROWN AWARD
  • 1 Message - Echolight Studios
  • A Call to India - Charl Folscher
  • For the Glory - 1 Voice Films
  • Heaven's Rain - Echolight Studios
  • Israel, The Womb of the Kingdom of God on Earth - Hatikvah Film Trust
  • Jesus: He Lived Among Us - Vision Video
  • Milltown Pride - Unusual Films
  • Prodigal - Lost Coin Productions
  • Undaunted - DBM Communications

Friday, July 27, 2012

'Breaking Bad', 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes' Take Home Saturn Awards

Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Super 8 were the big film winners at the 38th annual Saturn Awards, presented by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films in the genre world’s version of the Oscars. Breaking Bad, meanwhile, was the dominant force on the television side.

Apes took home honors for best science fiction film, best supporting actor for Andy Serkis and best special effects, while Super 8 received awards for best director (J.J. Abrams), best music (Michael Giacchino) and best performance by a younger actor (Joel Courtney).

Breaking Bad was named best syndicated/cable TV series, and also received Saturns for best actor on television (Bryan Cranston) and best supporting actor on television (Aaron Paul).

In other film categories, best fantasy film was awarded to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 while The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo nabbed best horror thriller and Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol received best action/adventure film.

Michael Shannon took home best actor for Take Shelter while Kirsten Dunst was named best actress for her performance in Melancholia. Best supporting actress went to Emily Blunt for The Adjustment Bureau.

Puss in Boots was awarded best animated film while The Skin I Live In received the Saturn for best international film.

In television, the Saturn for best network series went to Fringe. Best television presentation went to The Walking Dead while Teen Wolf grabbed best youth-oriented series.

Fringe star Anna Torv picked up the prize for best actress, The Killing’s Michelle Forbest received best supporting actress, while Tom Skerritt was awarded best guest star for his appearance on Leverage.

Among the other notable awards were lifetime career awards to Frank Oz of Yoda fame and actor James Remar, and an innovative award to The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

'Dark Knight' Shooting: In Gesture of Sympathy, Studios May Not Report Box Office Grosses This Weekend

Hollywood studios are rallying together in the wake of the shooting that left at least 12 dead inside a midnight screening of "The Dark Knight Rises."

In an unprecedented move, no box office numbers could be reported for any film this weekend as Hollywood studios and independent distributors navigate the aftermath of the Colorado theater massacre that left a dozen moviegoers dead and dozens injured.

Warner Bros. said late Friday afternoon that it wouldn't report weekend grosses for The Dark Knight Rises out of respect for the victims of the shooting, which occurred during a midnight screening of the film in the Denver suburb of Aurora.

Throughout the evening, other studios and independent distributors began indicating they would refrain from reporting grosses as well over the weekend. Ditto for Rentrak, the service that collects box office data from theater owners across the country.

That doesn't mean studios won't know how their films are doing, including Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures -- who partnered on Dark Knight Rises -- since the data will still be available via Rentrak.

Box office observers reported late Friday evening that traffic for Dark Knight Rises may have slipped as the evening wore on. But the movie could still score the second-best opening of all time with a three-day gross in the $170 million to $180 million range.