Bill and Coo Plot: The feathered residents of Chirpendale are terrorized by an evil black crow by the name of "The Black Menace". But to the citizen's rescue comes a brave young taxi puller named Bill! [more inside]
"The members of TVTV (Top Value Television), the 1970s guerrilla video group I cofounded, were among the first to exploit the then brand-new portable video camera. We took them to big events and turned the cameras away from the spectacle and on to the people; almost no one had seen one before, and there were no rules about how to use them, or act in front of them..." Behind the Scenes With Jack Nicholson, Lily Tomlin and Michael Douglas at the 1976 Academy Awards.
Without visual effects the average blockbuster movie would look like this. However as Hollywood comes under financial pressure they are putting the squeeze on the VFX industry that they rely on, who are in turn passing the pressure onto workers. Now VFX workers are organizing a protest in time for the Oscars, which will be celebrating visual effects as the companies responsible for them close down. [more inside]
"Mixed" reviews of John Stewart's performance last night. A reminder that someone warned in February that Crash might win best picture because many Academy members were "unwilling to screen Brokeback Mountain" [permalinks broken, scroll down]. Marvel that YouTube somehow managed to get rights [cough] to Oscar video, at the Oscar frocks and that thing on Charlize Theron's shoulder, and at the persistent myth that a billion people watched the awards.
Say "cheese" — stinky, expensive, overprocessed American cheese. The venerable Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has revealed its set design for the Seventy-Eighth Academy Awards® Telecast. This year's edition is described as "an homage to old movie theaters" by designer Roy Christopher. "It's a no-holds-barred return to classic Hollywood glamour." Others may beg to differ.
The Box Office Oracle You pick the writer, director, genre, actrons, budget, rating and month of release. You get projected box office receipts, chance of winning an Oscar and critics most likely to praise and pan your movie. There's even a BOO Hall of Fame. [via All Movie Guide reviewer Matthew Tobey]