Getting More Immersed with Indiewire

  The Penske Media purchase of Indiewire has resulted in an expansion of my role as crafts and awards season contributor. ¬†Beginning this week, I begin Emmy coverage of below-the-line contenders along with my usual Oscar season crafts reporting, working closely

Immersed in Blu-ray: Hitchcock and Bogart

The WB Archive Collection gets Hitch and Bogie on Blu-ray and they've never looked better for home viewing. In Kent Jones' indispensable doc, Hitchcock/Truffaut, he reminds us that Truffaut was on a mission to correct misconceptions about Hitch as a lightweight

Immersed in Books: Farber on Film

For the first time, the complete writings of film critic Manny Farber is available from Library of America, edited by Robert Polito (Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson). Manny Farber (1917-2008) was the first modernist film critic to write like a modernist.


Sam Mendes Negotiating Bond Return

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Books, James Bond, Tech | Leave a comment

So, after all the jostling the last couple of weeks to find the next Bond director (the list of suspects included Chris Nolan, Tom Hooper, Ang Lee, Matthew Vaughn, and Nicolas Winding Refn), Sam Mendes is back in play for Bond 24 (and, rumor has it, Bond 25). What producer Barbara Broccoli and star Daniel Craig want, they usually get, especially after Skyfall made $1.1 billion. Read more

Sizing Up the Microscopic World of Epic

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Books, Clips, Tech, Trailers, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Blue Sky’s biggest achievement on Epic was going naturalistic for a more believable animation style. It’s certainly a far cry from the Ice Age franchise or even Rio and required technical adjustments as well as a different approach to performance. However, scale was the biggest challenge in delineating the human and microscopic forest worlds, according to producer Michael Travers, production designer Greg Couch, and animation supervisors Galen Chu and Melvin Tan. Read more

Trailering The Congress

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Books, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Watch the international trailer for The Congress, in which Ari Folman (Waltz with Bashir) continues his trippy experiment with live-action and animation. Read more

Catherine Martin Talks Designing Gatsby in 3-D

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Below the Line, Books, Movies, previs, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

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Zoic Provides VFX for Midnight’s Children

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Books, Movies, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX | Leave a comment

Zoic Studios entered the dizzying world of Delhi’s slums during the end of British colonial rule for Midnight’s Children, adapted from Salman Rushdie’s acclaimed novel by director¬†Deepa Mehta (opening May 3 in L.A. and select cities and June 26 in NYC through Paladin/108 Media). Read more

Jerry Beck Launches Animation Scoop

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Blu-ray, Books, performance capture, Shorts, stop-motion, Tech, Videogames | Leave a comment

Animation historian Jerry Beck (formerly co-owner of Cartoon Brew) has launched Animation Scoop, which will be part of the Indiewire blog network, where I will serve as contributing editor, writing about animated features with interviews and behind the scenes pieces. Read more

Remembering Ebert

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Books, Movies | Leave a comment

Roger Ebert’s passing got to me more than I thought, probably because I took him for granted. I always enjoyed his weekly jousting with Gene Siskel, but never took him seriously enough until I heard him speak eloquently about Psycho at Telluride in ’84 during a Janet Leigh tribute. Then I realized why he was a Pulitzer Prize-winning critic: TV was just the appetizer and his reviews were the main course (Siskel made snap judgments purely on emotion while Ebert had a more open-minded intellect that was still raring to go after the balcony closed). Still, he was adept at all media and his enthusiasm was infectious; and it wasn’t surprising that he embraced the internet and social media with his passionate discourse. Read more

Trailering New Gatsby

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Below the Line, Books, Movies, Music, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The latest trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby (May 10) makes it look like a Jazz Age Romeo + Juliet, with the hot sounds of Beyonce, Andre 3000, Lana Del Ray, and Florence + The Machine with lots of help from rapper and exec producer Jay-Z.

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Who Should Direct Bond 24?

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Books, James Bond, Movies | Leave a comment

With yesterday’s revelation on Empire that Sam Mendes will not return for Bond 24 (too much already on his plate and ultimately he got Bond creatively out of his system), who should replace him? I explore a few options. Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: Schindler’s List

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Blu-ray, Books, Clips, Movies, Oscar, Tech | Leave a comment

Hard to believe it’s been 20 years since Steven Spielberg came of age with his Oscar-winning Schindler’s List. Universal releases the Blu-ray this week and the black and white image mastered from the original negative looks crisp and luminous. Read more