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.

Production Design

USC 5D Returns with Rilao Science of Fiction

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Education, Events, Festivals, Movies, Music, Production Design, Sound, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

After last year’s successful “The Science of Fiction: World Building in Action,” USC 5D returns with “The Rilao Project” at the 2014 Science of Fiction Festival on Saturday, spearheaded by award-winning production designer and USC School of Cinematic Arts Professor Alex McDowell. Read more

Stitching Birdman Together

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Clips, Editing, Movies, Music, Oscar, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu may not want to give away the “continuous take” gag in his extraordinary Birdman, but Oscar buzz continues to mount because he’s achieved the ultimate in POV narrative. And his long-time editors Douglas Crise and Stephen Mirrione “stitched” Birdman together in a very unique way, compiling an assembly of rehearsal footage before principal photography and cleverly erasing the cuts with the VFX and post teams. Read more

Alonso Highlights VES Summit

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Cinematography, Events, Movies, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Shorts, Tech, TV, VES, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Victoria Alonso described “filling the gap” as the key to storytelling and VFX success at Marvel at yesterday’s 6th annual VES Summit at the W Hotel in Hollywood, while VFX specialist Ben Grossmann, production designer Bo Welch, and DP Dion Beebe discussed the need for VFX to evolve into a more front-loaded collaborative workflow. Read more

Warner Bros. To Tackle 10 DC Superhero Movies

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

Warner Bros. has suffered Marvel envy long enough and is fighting back with 10 DC superhero movies through 2020 (plus some Batman and Superman standalones, including Man of Steel 2). The ambitious slate announced today by CEO Kevin Tsuijihara also includes a Harry Potter spin-off trilogy for 2016, 2018, and 2020 based on J.K. Rowlings’ Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (to be scripted by Rowlings and directed by David Yates and a trio of Lego movies. Read more

Bats and Battles of Dracula Untold

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

Dracula Untold (which looks best in IMAX) tells the origin story of Vlad the Impaler. Framestore (under the VFX supervision of Christian Manz) created 710 shots with huge battles and swarms of bats. Read more

Trailering Tomorrowland from Brad Bird

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

Watch the first teaser for Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland (May 22, 2015) and get a glimpse of his “somewhere in time” sci-fi adventure. Read more

Alonso of Marvel to Keynote VES Summit

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Cinematography, Education, Events, Movies, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Shorts, Tech, TV, VES, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Victoria Alonso, Marvel Studios EVP of visual effects and post production, will keynote the 6th annual VES Summit, titled “Networking and Visual Imagery Evolution.”  The interactive forum will take place on Oct. 18 at the W Hotel in Hollywood. Read more

VES Taking Awards Submissions

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Events, Movies, performance capture, previs, Production Design, Tech, TV, VES, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

 

 

The Visual Effects Society is currently accepting submissions for the 13th Annual VES Awards (Feb. 4, 2015) at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

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Trailering American Sniper from Clint Eastwood

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Books, Cinematography, Costume, Editing, Movies, Oscar, Production Design, Sound, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Watch the first teaser for Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper (opening Dec. 25).  He looks in top form again. Could the two-time Oscar winner pull off another Million Dollar Baby? Read more

Christian Bale Talks Moses in Exodus: Gods and Kings

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Costume, Editing, Movies, Music, Oscar, previs, Production Design, Sound, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

While Christian Bale admitted that you can’t out-Heston Charlton Heston in playing the all-consuming Moses, the real question was if Ridley Scott can out-Gladiator Gladiator with Exodus: Gods and Kings (Dec. 12). After glimpsing about a half-hour of powerful footage that left us wanting more on Tuesday, the answer is definitely yes (watch the new trailer below). Read more