Award Season :: Complete Nominee List :: 2014 Oscars :: Snubs ‘n’ Picks

By Shannonn Kelly
06:30AM, EST, January 16, 2014
Updated: 08:56AM, EST, January 16, 2014

Oscar Nominations Announced - Big Snubs!
Oscar Nominations Announced – Big Snubs!

I’ll be updating my blog later this morning to give you the breakdown of all the Oscar Nominees for the 86th Annual Academy Awards. As you can see, I’m waiting to fill in the blanks below.

The nominees will announced in 2 hours at 8:30AM on CBS. I’ll be watching from home in my PJs with a Mimosa and some decadent baked goods 🙂

In the meantime, enjoy the video below with 250 dancers and Academy Award® Host Ellen DeGeneres dressed in matching tuxedos dancing to “The Walker” by the Los Angeles soul/indie pop band Fitz and the Tantrums.

Sticking with the theme of celebrating “Heroes”, real-life Thor, actor Chris Hemsworth announced the Nominees this morning along with the Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Cheryl Boone Isaacs.

When I calculate below, it looks like “Gravity” and “American Hustle” both come out on top with 10 Oscar nominations each. Somebody, please check my math 😉

Your Complete List of Nominees for the 86th annual Academy Awards which will air Sunday, March 2, on ABC. Continue reading “Award Season :: Complete Nominee List :: 2014 Oscars :: Snubs ‘n’ Picks”

From Death in Dealey Plaza to Life on Film…50th Anniversary JFK Assassination

by Shannonn Kelly
04:31AM, EST, November 22, 2013

Today is the 50th Anniversary of the Assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the first president born in the 20th century to become president during his time and the youngest elected president to date.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963)
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
(May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963)

The question most asked today will be: “Where were you when JFK was shot?” Many people I know were not even born yet. But some of my FaceBook friends had this to say: Continue reading “From Death in Dealey Plaza to Life on Film…50th Anniversary JFK Assassination”

TIFF 2013 :: Day 11 :: Last Chance Films – BlackBerry® People’s Choice Award

by Shannonn Kelly
00:25AM, EST, Sunday September 15, 2013

Today is the last day the 38th Annual Toronto International Film Festival. I can barely see straight with all the long hours I put in. But all for a worthy cause. Seeing film and informing my readers about the best film picks and the fun moments at TIFF 2013.

Winners will be awarded in three main categories today: BlackBerry® People’s Choice Award; BlackBerry® Documentary Award; and BlackBerry® Midnight Madness Award. Other awards will be announced as well from Canadian Shorts and Feature Juries when announce their picks starting at 12 Noon today.

TIFF2013 Tip: Get in line at The Ryerson Theater  (44 Gerrard Street East) early because at 6:00PM, the Blackberry People’s Choice Award Winner will be screened and it is *free* to the public. Many people start lining up well before 12 Noon today at Ryerson, where tickets will be handed out to audience members waiting in line. Once the number of tickets needed to fill the house are given out, there is NO getting into the screening.

My picks for the BlackBerry® People’s Choice Award is “Gravity” starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney or “12 Years a Slave” starring Chiwetel Ejiofore. Bullock and Ejiofore are among my 2 picks for Best Actress and Best Actor nods for the Academy Award® 2014

TIFF 2013 BlackBerry® People's Choice Award Winner might be "Gravity" starring Sandra Bullock or "12 Years a Slave" starring Chiwetel Ejiofor
TIFF 2013 BlackBerry® People’s Choice Award Winner might be “Gravity” starring Sandra Bullock or “12 Years a Slave” starring Chiwetel Ejiofor

Today is Day 11 and this is your last chances to see films big or small. Please try to see films that do not have distribution. Please Support Independent Film. Happy TIFF-ING! 🙂
Continue reading “TIFF 2013 :: Day 11 :: Last Chance Films – BlackBerry® People’s Choice Award”

TIFF 2013 :: Day 5 :: What To See at TIFF Today –

by Shannonn Kelly
01:27 AM, EST, September 09, 2013

Sunday was a big Canadian film day at the Toronto International Film Festival – Snapped this picture of director Bruce McDonald for fun as we were crossing the street together.

Canadian filmmaker Bruce McDonald
Canadian filmmaker Bruce McDonald

I watched the premieres of 3 Canadian films on Sunday starting very early in the morning: Peter Stebbings “empire of Dirt”, documentary Burt’s Buzz and Don McKellar’s stellar debut of the English-speaking version of ‘Seducing Dr. Lewis called, “The Grand Seduction” starring Brendan Gleeson and Gordon Pinset.

My favorite films of the day were “Empire of Dirt”, where I tweeted: “Peter Stebbings gracefully directs a superbly realistic cast in @EODthemovie, proving again #FirstNations talent is sadly underused in #film“, “The Grand Seduction” for different reason’s maybe than critics might say, “Parkland” by Peter Landesman about the people behind the scenes of the day JFK was shot (superb cast) and the raw and under-doggish “FAT”, by Mark Phinney.

Today for Day 5, here are my picks for what to see. Happy TIFF-ing 🙂

Continue reading “TIFF 2013 :: Day 5 :: What To See at TIFF Today –”

TIFF 2013 :: Day 2 :: What To See at TIFF Today

by Shannonn Kelly
02:14AM, EST, Friday September 06, 2013

Too pooped to party (and not really that interested after going there and people watching), I decided to just get in front of my computer and write my blog early, since every other day I’ll be penning it sometime past 3AM.

As the opening night of the 38th Annual Toronto International Film Festival, before the gala premiere at the Elgin, we were treated to a short film among many commissioned by the Elgin/Wintergarden theater to celebrate it’s centennial. A post-apocalyptic piece with great set design that turned the Elgin into a decrepit temple of doom cloaked in darkness, cobwebs and a hosteling a hidden society.

The next unexpected bittersweet treat was a short retrospective on Roger Ebert’s (sadly missed) presence at TIFF> Years of archival footage and stills woven together to celebrate a critic that truly loved the voice of film.

Tonight I saw the much anticipated “The Fifth Estate“, the WikiLeaks Julian Assange story starring Benedict Cumberbatch in the lead role.. Some timely and sly references from the characters of , , some cold but interesting graphics, ‘The Fifth Estate’ is part geek-heaven-globe-trotting information espionage, part contentious ‘Bro-mance’ between Assange and Daniel Domscheit-Berg played solidly by .

I’m too tired to read any reviews, but I’m sure they will be mixed as audience reaction seemed mixed as well. I was thinking about a lot of the technical aspects of the film while watching. However, the acting all around was very strong.

I went to the ‘early’ premiere. Director  was present but not nor .

  • “12 Years A Slave”, dir. Steve McQueen (USA) I’ll say it right now – Look for an Oscar worthy performance by Chiwetel Ejiofore
  • “Attila Marcel”, dir. Sylvain Chomet same director who brought us Triplettes of Belleville with his firat live action feature.
  • “Parkland”, dir. Peter Landesman directs Zac Efron, Paul Giamatti, Billy Bob Thornton, and Jacki Weaver in an ensemble piece that looks at the day and the people involved the day JFK was shot.
  • “Prisoners”, dir.
  • Denis Villeneuve (Incendies) directs Jake Gyllenhaal and Hugh Jackman in a thriller about the disappearance of two young girls.

  • “Bad Words”, dir. Jason Bateman
  • directs and stars as a 40-something high-school dropout who, through some weird loophole enters a national children’s spelling bee that he lost out on years previous when he was a kid.

  • “Horns”, dir.
  • Daniel Radcliffe stars in this horror/supernatural thriller as a guy blamed for the brutal murder of his girlfriend (Juno Temple) and realizes he’s been marked as the murderer when he awakes to find a pair of horns growing from his head.

  • “Abuse of Weakness”, dir. Catherine Breillat’s
  • Based on the director’s own almost unbelievable story about an filmmaker (Isabelle Huppert) who suffers from a stroke, and as she begins to recuperate puts here faith in a con-man who bilks her out out almost a million dollars after she commissions him to write a screenplay for her

  • “What is Cinema?” Dir. Chuck Workman
  • The question is the reason you should see this documentary

  • “Love is The Perfect Crime”, dir. Jean-Marie Larrieu and Arnaud Larrieu’s
  • A womanizing professor complicated life takes a turn for the worse following the disappearance of a student. Stars Mathieu Amalric (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, 2007)

  • “Triptyque” (Triptych), dir. Robert LePage, Pedro Pires – Not originally on my Top 100 but I’ve heard so much about the play, that I’m hopefully going to see it
  • “Tim’s Vermeer”, dir.
  • Penn of “Penn and Teller” directs this unusual documentary that investigates how Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer painted such photo-realistic paintings

  • “All About The Feathers”
  • Dir. Neto Villalobos from Costa Rico directs his first film about a security guard who wants to get into the cockfighting but becomes inseparable from his rooster Rocky.

  • Midnight Madness: The Station
  • dir. Marvin Kren His film Rammbock from 2010 had a virus spread across a city that turned people into mindless homicidal maniacs. This time his thriller takes place with a remote weather research station crew in the German Alps that discover a glacier turning the local wildlife into “ravenous biological monstrosities”.

Oscar News :: Daniel Day-Lewis Makes Academy Award History With Three-Peat

by Shannonn Kelly
04:56AM, EST, February 25, 2013

Daniel Day-Lewis is Oscar's Triple Threat
Daniel Day-Lewis is Oscar’s Triple Threat

It was a lock for me the moment I witnessed immersible character actor Daniel Michael Blake Day-Lewis on the big screen as Lincoln.

There was really no other male performance in a leading role that did on screen what Daniel Day-Lewis did with his astonishing embodiment of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States.

Day-Lewis made Lincoln relevant and to say the least, compelling. Day-Lewis deserved his Best Actor In a Leading Role Oscar and he deserved to make Oscar history and standout in front of the other great actors who’ve received the award 2 times each. They are:

  • Marlon Brando
  • Gary Cooper
  • Tom Hanks
  • Dustin Hoffman
  • Fredric March
  • Jack Nicholson
  • Sean Penn
  • Spencer Tracy

Continue reading “Oscar News :: Daniel Day-Lewis Makes Academy Award History With Three-Peat”

Filmmaker Michael Moore To The Rescue – A New Kind of Super Hero

by Shannonn Kelly
06:21AM, EST, February 21, 2013

Michael Moore Twitter Updates on Emad Bunat's LAX Detainment
Michael Moore Twitter Updates on Emad Bunat’s LAX Detainment

Moore Moore:

“5 Broken Cameras isn’t just one of the best documentaries of the year, it’s one of the best movies of this year. I’d put it on the same level as any of the other great fiction films made this year.”

Emad Burnat, the Palestinian farmer turned co-director of “5 Broken Cameras” was on his way from Turkey to the United States for this Sunday’s Academy Award® ceremony. Bunat has made the first Palestinian documentary to receive an Oscar nomination.

However, upon his arrival at LAX, Burnat was detained and questioned for reportedly up to several hours by USA immigration officials at the Los Angeles Airport.

Burnat contacted Michael Moore (@MMFlint) via Twitter for help. After being threatened to be sent back home, Burnat was finally released Wednesday from LAX director and activist Michael Moore came to the rescue.

Michael Moore:

Apparently the Immigration & Customs officers couldn’t understand how a Palestinian could be an Oscar nominee. Emad texted me for help.

According to Moore’s twitter account: “Emad, his wife & 8 year old son were placed in a holding area and told they didn’t have the proper invitation on them to attend the Oscars.”

Continue reading “Filmmaker Michael Moore To The Rescue – A New Kind of Super Hero”

Beyoncé HBO Documentary “Life Is But a Dream” or… a Beautiful Nightmare

by Shannonn Kelly
06:52AM, EST, February 16, 2013

Beyoncé HBO documentary, "Life Is But a Dream"  premieres On HBO
Beyoncé HBO documentary, “Life Is But a Dream” premieres On HBO

How do you feel about Beyoncé…?

I used to really like her when she was with Destiny’s Child and then on her first solo album Dangerously in Love (2003).

But, around 2006 with release of her second solo album, B’Day and top 10 hits “Déjà Vu“, “Irreplaceable” and “Beautiful Liar” and up to her third solo album I Am… Sasha Fierce (2008), with “If I Were a Boy” “Halo” and “Sweet Dreams“, quite frankly, I honestly got pretty tired of her and her insipid lyrics.

Continue reading “Beyoncé HBO Documentary “Life Is But a Dream” or… a Beautiful Nightmare”

Oscar News :: 85th Annual Academy Award Nominations Announced

by Shannonn Kelly
08:56AM, EST, January 10, 2013

Seth McFarlane and Emma Stone  Announce 84th Annual Academy Award Nominations
Seth McFarlane and Emma Stone Announce 84th Annual Academy Award Nominations

Family Guy‘ creator Seth McFarlane and this year’s Oscar Host and busy actress Emma Stone  announced the 84th Annual Academy Award® nominations, this morning, Thursday, January 10 at the ungawdly hour of 5:30AM, PST.

Of course I watched. Normally the announcement comes after the Golden Globes ceremony takes place, but this year’s announcement is a full 2 weeks earlier than the 2012 Oscar announcements. The move was a strategic one to “provide members and the public a longer period of time to see the nominated films.”

The 85th Academy Awards will be held on Sunday February 24, 2013, in the Dolby Theatre.

Red carpet arrivals start around 5:00PM and the broadcast starts promptly at 8:00PM. Continue reading “Oscar News :: 85th Annual Academy Award Nominations Announced”

1K Feature Film Challenge :: Commentary :: Liquid Handcuffs

by Shannonn Kelly
06:33AM, EST, October 16, 2012

1K Film Challenge – director John L’Ecuyer – “Sometimes having a good time is a bad thing.”

John L’Ecuyer (Curtis’s Charm, Saint Jude), a very engaging  filmmaker originally from Montreal, is used to making films for over $100,000.

But he failed in making a film for under $1000. L’Ecuyer did not complete his 1K Film Challenge.

According to an article in the Toronto Star by
Jason Anderson

Why Veninger liked the pitch: “His pitch was deeply personal and originally John L’Ecuyer was going to play the lead role. Stacey and I loved the idea of John getting back to his raw indie filmmaking roots with a hybrid narrative-documentary feature.”
How L’Ecuyer describes it: “Liquid Handcuffs (a.k.a. Methadonia) is about the trials and tribulations of life on methadone from the clinical aspects to the social, and how it impacts the life of a talented musician, English Nigel. It was a film in which I wanted to fend off the nefarious associations the general public makes about addicts.”
Toughest challenge: “It’s already a very challenging endeavour to make a feature film, but with an inexperienced crew and non-professional actors, the challenges intensify. Our philosophy was to try as best we could to make a film that an audience would enjoy.”

Continue reading “1K Feature Film Challenge :: Commentary :: Liquid Handcuffs”