American Cinematheque Puts on a Giant Bradley Cooper Love Fest

There was a lot of talk about how handsome Bradley Cooper is on Thursday night at the Beverly Hilton, where the director and star of “A Star Is Born” became the 32nd recipient of the American Cinematheque Award at a black-tie fundraising dinner and ceremony.

And there was a lot of talk about how hard-working he is and how talented he is, lots of the kind of plaudits that are the currency of the realm at Hollywood awards shows.

But something felt different about the tribute to Cooper. “Most of us have been to nights like this many times before,” actor Sean Penn said when he presented the award to Cooper after a couple of hours of speeches and film clips. “But we’ve never been at one where so many generous and moving things have been said with such extemporaneous spirit.”

Also Read: ‘A Star Is Born’ Film Review: Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga Reinvigorate a Classic

And he was right. The Cinematheque’s tribute to Cooper felt like the love fest to end all love fests, with a string of friends and colleagues – among them Jennifer Garner, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms, Patricia Clarkson, Vince Vaughan, David O. Russell, Sam Elliott and Lady Gaga – declaring undying affection for the three-time Oscar nominee who is currently riding high with the success of his new version of “A Star Is Born.”

“It’s beyond overwhelming to feel the love I had showered on me tonight,” a clearly touched Cooper, who was reduced to tears several times during the course of the ceremony, said when he took the stage at the end of the night.

And just as surprising as the fact that Cooper took a thrice-told story and turned it into an Oscar frontrunner was the realization that despite all that love being flung around the Beverly Hilton ballroom, things never quite got maudlin or corny.

(Well, maybe just a little when Lady Gaga quoted her “Star Is Born” song “I’ll Never Love Again” and said, “I’ll never love again a director the way I loved you, Bradley Cooper – truly, a director star was born.” But by that point, everybody in the room was ready to go with it.)

Also Read: Bradley Cooper to Receive Director of the Year Award at Palm Springs Film Festival

On a night when Dolby Laboratories’ Doug Darrow also accepted the Cinematheque’s 4th annual Sid Grauman Award, which is presented to a person or company who has made an impact of the exhibition of motion pictures, the Cooper tribute was a more-or-less chronological trip through his career.

It started with Jennifer Garner, who introduced a clip package devoted to what she said was “the finest work of Bradley’s career: the TV years.” The clips from “Alias,” “Law & Order: Trial by Jury,” “Sex and the City” and “Kitchen Confidential” and his speedo-clad appearance in “Nip and Tuck” argued otherwise.

Vince Vaughan made fun of the brightly-colored workout clothes Cooper wore when he wasn’t working on “Wedding Crashers” (“he was like a child dressed by [his] parents to not get hit by a car when he goes outside”) but then cut the jokes, got downright serious and called Cooper a genius.

Ed Helms and Zach Galifiakanis followed the same pattern: They made plenty of jokes (“When we were making ‘Hangover 3,’ all Bradley wanted to talk about was what mobile plan was best to phone in his performance,” said Galifiakanis) but then showered Cooper with praise, especially when Galifiakanis talked about he and Cooper bonded over how much they loved their parents.

Also Read: Lady Gaga Calls Kavanaugh Debate ‘One of the Most Upsetting Things I Have Ever Witnessed’ (Videos)

Brian Klugman, who has been friends with Cooper since they were 10, answered one burning question: “In case you were wondering, he was always handsome. He could come over when he was 11, and my grandmother would say, ‘He’s so good-looking!’”

But then he told a story about how in the sixth grade, Cooper won an award that was basically “the best person in the school award,” and then went to a dance and immediately went up to the girl that all the boys had been making fun of and asked her to dance. At the end of the story, Cooper wiped his eyes and lowered his head.

David O. Russell, who directed Cooper in “Silver Linings Playbook,” “American Hustle” and “Joy,” summed the actor up by saying, “it is his heart that makes something unforgettable, that makes something alive, that makes something human … He is the greatest collaborator an artist could ask for.”

Also Read: ‘A Star Is Born’ Cinematographer Arrested, Charged With Assaulting First Responders in Poland

After brief tributes from former U.S. Marine Jacob Schick, who appeared in “American Sniper,” and Taya Kyle, wife of the late soldier played by Cooper in that film, Patricia Clarkson took things in a different direction.

Clarkson told of appearing with Cooper in a stage production of “The Elephant Man,” where she had to perform a nude scene. “He cast me in that role, and I am not an ingénue,” she said. “I am an ingen-not-so-f—ing-new … Every night in the wings I was frightened, but every night when we did that scene, he made it so that it was simply Mrs. Kendal and John Merrick alone in a room.

“Bradley, it was the honor of my life to stand beside you onstage.” When she finished, Cooper once again lowered his head and wiped away tears.

And he cried again when Lady Gaga, fighting back tears of her own, said, “When we do Q&As for this film, sometimes you call me Gaga. But we both know that you call me Stefani. [Her real name is Stefani Germanotta.] I ran from Stefani for a long time, and I put on a superhero cape and called myself Lady Gaga. And you challenged me to deep dive into a place where I had to be Stefani again.”

Sam Elliott, who plays Cooper’s brother in “A Star Is Born,” summed it up near the end of the evening: “Its clear that everyone in this room is in love with you, my friend, and for all the right reasons,” he said.

Also Read: ‘A Star Is Born’: How Bradley Cooper Worked for 6 Months to Become Country Singer Jackson Maine

And then Penn came out, talked about what a moving night it had been and quickly punctured the mood. “Full disclosure,” he said. “I don’t like handsome or young men.”

But he makes an exception for Cooper – so after a modest diatribe about how he’s bored by “movies [about] men and women who wear their underwear on the outside of their tights,” he began lavishing praise on “A Star Is Born.” The film “shows that human stories of scale can still be told by artists of such amazing honesty,” he said.

“I told you before,” he added, “I don’t know how you did it, but we’re all just so grateful that you did, you handsome mother—er.”

Cooper, for his part, seemed at a loss for words by the time he got to the stage. He mentioned that the room had seemed cavernous when he first went there for the Golden Globes while he was on “Alias,” but now it seemed far more intimate. And he thanked Michael Mann, who was in the crowd, for writing him a thank-you note after an early audition for a small role he didn’t get.

“Michael f—ing Mann wrote me a note thanking me for auditioning after I didn’t get the job,” he said, still incredulous.

“Tonight,” he said to the room before walking off stage, “you have given me so much inspiration.”

Related stories from TheWrap:

Listen to Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga Sing ‘Shallow’ From ‘A Star Is Born’ (Video)

Eddie Vedder Inspired Bradley Cooper’s ‘Star Is Born’ Character: ‘He Was Like, What? Bro, Don’t Do That’

‘Green Book’ Named 2018’s Top Film by National Board of Review

There was a lot of talk about how handsome Bradley Cooper is on Thursday night at the Beverly Hilton, where the director and star of “A Star Is Born” became the 32nd recipient of the American Cinematheque Award at a black-tie fundraising dinner and ceremony.

And there was a lot of talk about how hard-working he is and how talented he is, lots of the kind of plaudits that are the currency of the realm at Hollywood awards shows.

But something felt different about the tribute to Cooper. “Most of us have been to nights like this many times before,” actor Sean Penn said when he presented the award to Cooper after a couple of hours of speeches and film clips. “But we’ve never been at one where so many generous and moving things have been said with such extemporaneous spirit.”

And he was right. The Cinematheque’s tribute to Cooper felt like the love fest to end all love fests, with a string of friends and colleagues – among them Jennifer Garner, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms, Patricia Clarkson, Vince Vaughan, David O. Russell, Sam Elliott and Lady Gaga – declaring undying affection for the three-time Oscar nominee who is currently riding high with the success of his new version of “A Star Is Born.”

“It’s beyond overwhelming to feel the love I had showered on me tonight,” a clearly touched Cooper, who was reduced to tears several times during the course of the ceremony, said when he took the stage at the end of the night.

And just as surprising as the fact that Cooper took a thrice-told story and turned it into an Oscar frontrunner was the realization that despite all that love being flung around the Beverly Hilton ballroom, things never quite got maudlin or corny.

(Well, maybe just a little when Lady Gaga quoted her “Star Is Born” song “I’ll Never Love Again” and said, “I’ll never love again a director the way I loved you, Bradley Cooper – truly, a director star was born.” But by that point, everybody in the room was ready to go with it.)

On a night when Dolby Laboratories’ Doug Darrow also accepted the Cinematheque’s 4th annual Sid Grauman Award, which is presented to a person or company who has made an impact of the exhibition of motion pictures, the Cooper tribute was a more-or-less chronological trip through his career.

It started with Jennifer Garner, who introduced a clip package devoted to what she said was “the finest work of Bradley’s career: the TV years.” The clips from “Alias,” “Law & Order: Trial by Jury,” “Sex and the City” and “Kitchen Confidential” and his speedo-clad appearance in “Nip and Tuck” argued otherwise.

Vince Vaughan made fun of the brightly-colored workout clothes Cooper wore when he wasn’t working on “Wedding Crashers” (“he was like a child dressed by [his] parents to not get hit by a car when he goes outside”) but then cut the jokes, got downright serious and called Cooper a genius.

Ed Helms and Zach Galifiakanis followed the same pattern: They made plenty of jokes (“When we were making ‘Hangover 3,’ all Bradley wanted to talk about was what mobile plan was best to phone in his performance,” said Galifiakanis) but then showered Cooper with praise, especially when Galifiakanis talked about he and Cooper bonded over how much they loved their parents.

Brian Klugman, who has been friends with Cooper since they were 10, answered one burning question: “In case you were wondering, he was always handsome. He could come over when he was 11, and my grandmother would say, ‘He’s so good-looking!'”

But then he told a story about how in the sixth grade, Cooper won an award that was basically “the best person in the school award,” and then went to a dance and immediately went up to the girl that all the boys had been making fun of and asked her to dance. At the end of the story, Cooper wiped his eyes and lowered his head.

David O. Russell, who directed Cooper in “Silver Linings Playbook,” “American Hustle” and “Joy,” summed the actor up by saying, “it is his heart that makes something unforgettable, that makes something alive, that makes something human … He is the greatest collaborator an artist could ask for.”

After brief tributes from former U.S. Marine Jacob Schick, who appeared in “American Sniper,” and Taya Kyle, wife of the late soldier played by Cooper in that film, Patricia Clarkson took things in a different direction.

Clarkson told of appearing with Cooper in a stage production of “The Elephant Man,” where she had to perform a nude scene. “He cast me in that role, and I am not an ingénue,” she said. “I am an ingen-not-so-f—ing-new … Every night in the wings I was frightened, but every night when we did that scene, he made it so that it was simply Mrs. Kendal and John Merrick alone in a room.

“Bradley, it was the honor of my life to stand beside you onstage.” When she finished, Cooper once again lowered his head and wiped away tears.

And he cried again when Lady Gaga, fighting back tears of her own, said, “When we do Q&As for this film, sometimes you call me Gaga. But we both know that you call me Stefani. [Her real name is Stefani Germanotta.] I ran from Stefani for a long time, and I put on a superhero cape and called myself Lady Gaga. And you challenged me to deep dive into a place where I had to be Stefani again.”

Sam Elliott, who plays Cooper’s brother in “A Star Is Born,” summed it up near the end of the evening: “Its clear that everyone in this room is in love with you, my friend, and for all the right reasons,” he said.

And then Penn came out, talked about what a moving night it had been and quickly punctured the mood. “Full disclosure,” he said. “I don’t like handsome or young men.”

But he makes an exception for Cooper – so after a modest diatribe about how he’s bored by “movies [about] men and women who wear their underwear on the outside of their tights,” he began lavishing praise on “A Star Is Born.” The film “shows that human stories of scale can still be told by artists of such amazing honesty,” he said.

“I told you before,” he added, “I don’t know how you did it, but we’re all just so grateful that you did, you handsome mother—er.”

Cooper, for his part, seemed at a loss for words by the time he got to the stage. He mentioned that the room had seemed cavernous when he first went there for the Golden Globes while he was on “Alias,” but now it seemed far more intimate. And he thanked Michael Mann, who was in the crowd, for writing him a thank-you note after an early audition for a small role he didn’t get.

“Michael f—ing Mann wrote me a note thanking me for auditioning after I didn’t get the job,” he said, still incredulous.

“Tonight,” he said to the room before walking off stage, “you have given me so much inspiration.”

Related stories from TheWrap:

Listen to Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga Sing 'Shallow' From 'A Star Is Born' (Video)

Eddie Vedder Inspired Bradley Cooper's 'Star Is Born' Character: 'He Was Like, What? Bro, Don't Do That'

'Green Book' Named 2018's Top Film by National Board of Review

Michael Mann Makes HarperCollins Book & Film Deal For Elaine Shannon Expose On Criminal Mastermind Paul Le Roux

EXCLUSIVE: In a deal firmed as an electrifying criminal murder trial unfolds, HarperCollins – under the publishing imprint established by filmmaker Michael Mann — has preemptively acquired publishing rights to a book Elaine Shannon has written about the transnational organized crime figure Paul Le Roux. Mann has simultaneously closed a deal for film and television rights to the book.
Shannon, an investigative reporter who has written for Time and Newsweek, wrote the 1988…

EXCLUSIVE: In a deal firmed as an electrifying criminal murder trial unfolds, HarperCollins – under the publishing imprint established by filmmaker Michael Mann — has preemptively acquired publishing rights to a book Elaine Shannon has written about the transnational organized crime figure Paul Le Roux. Mann has simultaneously closed a deal for film and television rights to the book. Shannon, an investigative reporter who has written for Time and Newsweek, wrote the 1988…

Guillermo del Toro Wants You to Appreciate the Craftsmanship of George Miller and Michael Mann

The director explains why he is going to hold two-week interviews with Mann and Miller during his sabbatical year.

Guillermo del Toro is currently riding high on the critical raves for “The Shape of Water,” which could earn the Mexican filmmaker his first Oscar nomination for Best Director. The fantasy romance will be the last bit of filmmaking audiences see from del Toro for quite a bit, as he has announced plans to take a year-long sabbatical from the director’s chair. So how does del Toro plan to keep busy? In addition to producing some projects, the director will sit down for two-week interviews with Michael Mann and George Miller.

Del Toro had previously teased he would be working in some capacity on a project involving Mann, and now it has been confirmed that part of the project will involve spending two weeks with Mann sometime between now and next December. Del Toro will also be doing the same thing with “Mad Max” creator Miller. As del Toro explains in the Twitter thread below, he really wants to dig into the craftsmanship of both directors.

Del Toro compares Mann and Miller to painters, and he wants to show everyone not only what is it they paint and why they paint it, but also what the decisions are that go into choosing what kind of brush is used and what kind of paint strokes are made. Whatever comes of del Toro’s interviews with Miller and Mann, we can assume they are going to be epic.

Read del Toro’s project tease in the thread below. “The Shape of Water” opens in select theaters December 1.

Oscars 2018 Party Report: Contenders From Emma Stone to Jake Gyllenhaal Hit the Scene (Photos)

The dean of Hollywood declares this Awards Season…open! Academy governor Steven Spielberg toasted the Governors Awards at Hollywood and Highland on November 11.After their peek-a-boo moment on the carpet (above), Best Actress winners Emma Stone and Jennifer Lawrence brought Greta Gerwig in to the mix at the Governors Awards, inside the Ray Dolby Ballroom.

That’s the same place where the Governors Ball will take place immediately after the March 4 ceremony.

Team “Lady Bird” get up close to Oscar: Director Greta Gerwig, Saoirse Ronan, Sam Levy and Nick Houy made a necessary pit stop on the way in to screening the film at the Academy’s New York HQ.

The Post’s Meryl Streep and Tom Brokaw deliver hard news gravitas to awards season.

They linked up at the International Rescue Committee’s Freedom Awards in Manhattan.Behold this lineup of indie contenders: Margot Robbie, Kumail Nanjiani, Lois Smith, Diane Kruger, Richard Gere, Salma Hayek, Robert Pattinson, and Sean Baker.

They huddled at the Roosevelt as part of AFI Fest 2017 presented by Audi.Justin Timberlake (“Wonderwheel”) and annual songwriting contender Diane Warren. When The Party Report caught up with Warren at the Globes bash and asked for a new music recommendation on Spotify, she cheekily offered “Stand Up For Something.”

That’s the song she wrote for “Marshall,” performed by Common and Andra Day.No mistletoe required: Wonder Wheel’s Kate Winslet and I, Tonya’s Allison Janney share a podium moment at the Beverly Hilton.Speaking of love being in the air.

The “Call Me By Your Name” guys (Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer) flank the new Golden Globe Ambassador, Simone Garcia Johnson. She’s The Rock’s 16-year-old daughter.Director Joe Wright (center) and lead Gary Oldman (right) dig in to the archives at the National Churchill Library in Washington D.C., an epilogue to Oldman’s work as Winston Churchill in Wright’s “Darkest Hour”.

Paramount chief Jim Gianopulos threw the big Governors Awards after party at the Sunset Tower on November 11.

Joining the host, from left, are Michael Mann, Kimberly Peirce, and Alfonso Cuaron.Scott Keogh, team “Mudbound” (Mary J. Blige, Carey Mulligan, and Dee Rees), Scott Stuber and Bob Gazzale at Netflix’s AFI opening night dinner.

Throughout AFI, the festival’s title sponsor Audi  curated an installation in the lobby of the Roosevelt.

It featured an AFI-produced PSA featuring women in film and spotlights the Audi Fellowship for Women, which was created earlier this year to support one female director and her entire two-year AFI Conservatory enrollment.

The Golden Globes already threw a big bash where both TV and film contenders mingled on the rooftop at Catch. Take a look inside:

Also Read: Jake Gyllenhaal, Salma Hayek, Kevin Bacon Party at First Golden Globes Bash (Photos)

Related stories from TheWrap:

‘Marjorie Prime’ Star Lois Smith on Becoming an Oscar Contender at 87

How Internet Cat Videos Paved the Way for Oscar Contender ‘Kedi’

Oscar Contender ‘Jane’ Takes Brett Morgen From Kurt Cobain to Jane Goodall

Oscar 2018: Documentary Filmmaker Portraits, From Agnes Varda to Jim Carrey (Exclusive Photos)

Oscars 2018: Dark Horses We Love, From Jeremy Renner to Salma Hayek (Exclusive Photos)

The dean of Hollywood declares this Awards Season…open! Academy governor Steven Spielberg toasted the Governors Awards at Hollywood and Highland on November 11.After their peek-a-boo moment on the carpet (above), Best Actress winners Emma Stone and Jennifer Lawrence brought Greta Gerwig in to the mix at the Governors Awards, inside the Ray Dolby Ballroom.

That’s the same place where the Governors Ball will take place immediately after the March 4 ceremony.

Team “Lady Bird” get up close to Oscar: Director Greta Gerwig, Saoirse Ronan, Sam Levy and Nick Houy made a necessary pit stop on the way in to screening the film at the Academy’s New York HQ.

The Post’s Meryl Streep and Tom Brokaw deliver hard news gravitas to awards season.

They linked up at the International Rescue Committee’s Freedom Awards in Manhattan.Behold this lineup of indie contenders: Margot Robbie, Kumail Nanjiani, Lois Smith, Diane Kruger, Richard Gere, Salma Hayek, Robert Pattinson, and Sean Baker.

They huddled at the Roosevelt as part of AFI Fest 2017 presented by Audi.Justin Timberlake (“Wonderwheel”) and annual songwriting contender Diane Warren. When The Party Report caught up with Warren at the Globes bash and asked for a new music recommendation on Spotify, she cheekily offered “Stand Up For Something.”

That’s the song she wrote for “Marshall,” performed by Common and Andra Day.No mistletoe required: Wonder Wheel’s Kate Winslet and I, Tonya’s Allison Janney share a podium moment at the Beverly Hilton.Speaking of love being in the air.

The “Call Me By Your Name” guys (Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer) flank the new Golden Globe Ambassador, Simone Garcia Johnson. She’s The Rock’s 16-year-old daughter.Director Joe Wright (center) and lead Gary Oldman (right) dig in to the archives at the National Churchill Library in Washington D.C., an epilogue to Oldman’s work as Winston Churchill in Wright’s “Darkest Hour”.

Paramount chief Jim Gianopulos threw the big Governors Awards after party at the Sunset Tower on November 11.

Joining the host, from left, are Michael Mann, Kimberly Peirce, and Alfonso Cuaron.Scott Keogh, team “Mudbound” (Mary J. Blige, Carey Mulligan, and Dee Rees), Scott Stuber and Bob Gazzale at Netflix’s AFI opening night dinner.

Throughout AFI, the festival’s title sponsor Audi  curated an installation in the lobby of the Roosevelt.

It featured an AFI-produced PSA featuring women in film and spotlights the Audi Fellowship for Women, which was created earlier this year to support one female director and her entire two-year AFI Conservatory enrollment.

The Golden Globes already threw a big bash where both TV and film contenders mingled on the rooftop at Catch. Take a look inside:

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Marjorie Prime' Star Lois Smith on Becoming an Oscar Contender at 87

How Internet Cat Videos Paved the Way for Oscar Contender 'Kedi'

Oscar Contender 'Jane' Takes Brett Morgen From Kurt Cobain to Jane Goodall

Oscar 2018: Documentary Filmmaker Portraits, From Agnes Varda to Jim Carrey (Exclusive Photos)

Oscars 2018: Dark Horses We Love, From Jeremy Renner to Salma Hayek (Exclusive Photos)

Oscars’ Governors Awards Party in the Shadow of Hollywood’s Dark Times

The Academy’s 9th annual Governors Awards, which took place on Saturday night at the Ray Dolby Ballroom, was a Hollywood event that managed not to be overshadowed by Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and the other entertainment figures whose transgressions have dominated the news lately.

Instead, the focus was largely on two hours of warm and sometimes touching tributes to directors Agnes Varda and Charles Burnett, cinematographer Owen Roizman, actor Donald Sutherland and Alejandro G. Inarritu’s VR installation “Carne y Arena,” with a side helping of Oscar campaigning from a room full of contenders.

In a way, this year’s ceremony served as a moment of truth of sorts for 2017’s awards season. The event always does double duty as a celebration of career accomplishments and a supercharged campaign stop, with tables full of contenders from all the hot new movies mingling with Oscar voters and press during a crucial period early in the season.

Also Read: Seth MacFarlane Says His Harvey Weinstein Oscars Jab Came From ‘a Place of Loathing and Anger’

But with new names of transgressors and new lists of disgraceful behavior surfacing almost every day, can we feel good about the endless round of parties and kudos-fests that bestow shiny trophies on the work of an industry whose culture allowed predators to flourish for years?

If the culture of Hollywood is broken, is it unseemly to be celebrating its products?

“Yes,” said one top actress in attendance succinctly. “Unless we’re celebrating work that points the way to the future.”

But the Governors Awards focuses on the past, which meant that most people in the room wanted to pay tribute to Varda, Roizman, Burnett, Sutherland and Inarritu. And it’s hard to look askance at a night that saluted one of the greatest international female directors in cinema; the cinematographer of “The French Connection” and “Network”; a pioneer in African-American filmmaking; an actor whose career includes “M*A*S*H” and “Don’t Look Back”; and a VR work that asks viewers to walk in the footsteps of immigrants trying to cross the desert into America.

Also Read: Alejandro Inarritu’s VR Experience ‘Carne y Arena’ Shakes Up Cannes Viewers – If They Can See It

Sure, talk during the lengthy cocktail hour often drifted to Weinstein, long a fixture at these events; to Spacey, who most likely would have been in attendance on behalf of “All the Money in the World” had his scandal not caused Ridley Scott to hastily cut his performance from the film; and to the looming shadow of additional names to come.

A person with ties to the currently-shooting Freddie Mercury biopic worried about whether audiences could shun that film because its director, Bryan Singer, has been accused of sexual misconduct; on the other side of the room, a past Oscar winner was buttonholing people and asking, “Who’s going to be next? What have you heard?”

But that was largely undercurrent, a tacit acknowledgment that this is an odd awards season. It wasn’t a real distraction from the main business of saluting the honorees, or the secondary business of seeing and being seen.

So as guests arrived on the top floor of the Hollywood & Highland center, mutual admiration societies sprung up everywhere. Steven Spielberg huddled with Laurie Metcalf, “Blade Runner” director Denis Villeneuve chased down “Lady Bird” actress Saoirse Ronan, Guillermo del Toro chatted with Andy Serkis and everybody grinned as the 7-year-old star of “The Florida Project,” Brooklynn Prince, bounced up the steps in a bright red party dress.

“I think she was born for this,” said Prince’s director, Sean Baker.

Also Read: ‘The Florida Project’ Review: Neorealist Indie Strikingly Captures the Other Orlando

On the big screens inside the ballroom, the first words to appear were a statement of purpose: “This is not the Oscars. No nominees, no rules, no envelopes.”

First-term Academy president John Bailey opened not by talking about the code of conduct that the AMPAS board has been asked to create, or by promising more diversity the way his predecessor, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, has done at the last two Governors Awards, but by simply praising the winners – whose films, he said, “have set a high bar for us to emulate.”

After a schmooze-filled dinner, Steven Spielberg opened the proceedings, and then other Academy governors kicked off each of the individual presentations: Daryn Okada for fellow cinematographer Roizman, Kimberley Peirce and Kate Amend for Varda, Gregory Nava for Inarritu, Reginald Hudlin for Burnett and Whoopi Goldberg for Sutherland.

Other presenters included Dustin Hoffman for Roizman, Jessica Chastain and Angelina Jolie for Varda, Sean Baker and Ava DuVernay for Burnett and Colin Farrell and Jennifer Lawrence for Sutherland.

Also Read: ‘The Leisure Seeker’ Toronto Review: Helen Mirren, Donald Sutherland Highlight Touching Road Movie

Roizman was the most emotional winner and Sutherland the most eloquent, with Burnett wielding the best punchline: After talking about his junior high teacher, Mr. Baker, who in front of class told him he’d never amount to anything, he added, “I don’t know if that teacher is still around. But if he is, I hope he reads the trades.”

But the award to Varda, a pioneer in the French New Wave whose career contains more than 60 years of adventurous narrative features and documentaries, was in many ways the high point of the evening. Peirce kicked off the presentation with a lengthy description of how influential Varda’s unapologetic female characters were, interweaving a story about her own battles with the MPAA ratings board over a female orgasm depicted in Peirce’s “Boys Don’t Cry.”

Varda looked a little baffled by the comparison, but Peirce brought the house down – as did Documentary Branch governor Kate Amend who began her own remarks by noting, “Well, sadly, we don’t have a lot of orgasms in documentaries.”

Chastain then lauded Varda for her credo that “rebelliousness is part of being a woman,” and Jolie added, “To be around Agnes is to feel more oxygen come into the room.”

Also Read: ‘Faces Places’ Review: Agnès Varda Takes a Joyful Artist’s Journey Into Rural France

The 89-year-old filmmaker tried to brush off the praise, but her eyes welled up and it was clear she was touched. Her own speech was playful and impish, beginning by noting that all her presenters were female – “Are there no men in the room who love me?” – and ending in a little onstage dance with Jolie.

Inarritu’s speech, though, was the most passionate. He received a rare special Oscar for “Carne y Arena,” a VR installation that ran at the Cannes Film Festival and is now at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and one that immerses an audience – one viewer at a time – in the world of immigrants trying to come from Mexico to the United States.

Before receiving the award, Inarritu told TheWrap that he made the film with absolutely no thought of “this awards stuff.” But director and Academy governor Michael Mann pushed for the special award, saying that “Carne y Arena” “is to virtual reality what Eisenstein’s ‘Battleship Potemkin’ was to film.”

Also Read: ‘Revenant’ Director Alejandro Inarritu Blasts Donald Trump After Winning DGA Award

“There is no better prize in life than the one you win without competing,” Inarritu said when he took the stage. After a round of thank-yous, his speech turned into a charged denunciation of the ideologies and words that have been used to demonize and stereotype people.

“Only ideologies have f—ed up the world,” he said. ” … When the word ‘rapist’ or ‘illegal alien’ is fired, the reality of a certain human life or community is reduced to an idea, and whoever believes or possesses and fires that idea ends up impoverishing, misleading and degrading their perception of reality.”

He concluded, “I dedicate and receive this beautiful recognition on behalf of all the immigrants from Mexico, Central America, Asia, Africa and all corners of the world whose reality has been ignored and held hostage by ideologies and definitions, denying them the possibility of being understood and loved.”

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Petition Launched to Boot Casey Affleck From Next Year’s Oscars Over Past Harassment Accusations

170 Films Enter Oscars Documentary Category, Setting New Record

The Academy’s 9th annual Governors Awards, which took place on Saturday night at the Ray Dolby Ballroom, was a Hollywood event that managed not to be overshadowed by Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey and the other entertainment figures whose transgressions have dominated the news lately.

Instead, the focus was largely on two hours of warm and sometimes touching tributes to directors Agnes Varda and Charles Burnett, cinematographer Owen Roizman, actor Donald Sutherland and Alejandro G. Inarritu’s VR installation “Carne y Arena,” with a side helping of Oscar campaigning from a room full of contenders.

In a way, this year’s ceremony served as a moment of truth of sorts for 2017’s awards season. The event always does double duty as a celebration of career accomplishments and a supercharged campaign stop, with tables full of contenders from all the hot new movies mingling with Oscar voters and press during a crucial period early in the season.

But with new names of transgressors and new lists of disgraceful behavior surfacing almost every day, can we feel good about the endless round of parties and kudos-fests that bestow shiny trophies on the work of an industry whose culture allowed predators to flourish for years?

If the culture of Hollywood is broken, is it unseemly to be celebrating its products?

“Yes,” said one top actress in attendance succinctly. “Unless we’re celebrating work that points the way to the future.”

But the Governors Awards focuses on the past, which meant that most people in the room wanted to pay tribute to Varda, Roizman, Burnett, Sutherland and Inarritu. And it’s hard to look askance at a night that saluted one of the greatest international female directors in cinema; the cinematographer of “The French Connection” and “Network”; a pioneer in African-American filmmaking; an actor whose career includes “M*A*S*H” and “Don’t Look Back”; and a VR work that asks viewers to walk in the footsteps of immigrants trying to cross the desert into America.

Sure, talk during the lengthy cocktail hour often drifted to Weinstein, long a fixture at these events; to Spacey, who most likely would have been in attendance on behalf of “All the Money in the World” had his scandal not caused Ridley Scott to hastily cut his performance from the film; and to the looming shadow of additional names to come.

A person with ties to the currently-shooting Freddie Mercury biopic worried about whether audiences could shun that film because its director, Bryan Singer, has been accused of sexual misconduct; on the other side of the room, a past Oscar winner was buttonholing people and asking, “Who’s going to be next? What have you heard?”

But that was largely undercurrent, a tacit acknowledgment that this is an odd awards season. It wasn’t a real distraction from the main business of saluting the honorees, or the secondary business of seeing and being seen.

So as guests arrived on the top floor of the Hollywood & Highland center, mutual admiration societies sprung up everywhere. Steven Spielberg huddled with Laurie Metcalf, “Blade Runner” director Denis Villeneuve chased down “Lady Bird” actress Saoirse Ronan, Guillermo del Toro chatted with Andy Serkis and everybody grinned as the 7-year-old star of “The Florida Project,” Brooklynn Prince, bounced up the steps in a bright red party dress.

“I think she was born for this,” said Prince’s director, Sean Baker.

On the big screens inside the ballroom, the first words to appear were a statement of purpose: “This is not the Oscars. No nominees, no rules, no envelopes.”

First-term Academy president John Bailey opened not by talking about the code of conduct that the AMPAS board has been asked to create, or by promising more diversity the way his predecessor, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, has done at the last two Governors Awards, but by simply praising the winners – whose films, he said, “have set a high bar for us to emulate.”

After a schmooze-filled dinner, Steven Spielberg opened the proceedings, and then other Academy governors kicked off each of the individual presentations: Daryn Okada for fellow cinematographer Roizman, Kimberley Peirce and Kate Amend for Varda, Gregory Nava for Inarritu, Reginald Hudlin for Burnett and Whoopi Goldberg for Sutherland.

Other presenters included Dustin Hoffman for Roizman, Jessica Chastain and Angelina Jolie for Varda, Sean Baker and Ava DuVernay for Burnett and Colin Farrell and Jennifer Lawrence for Sutherland.

Roizman was the most emotional winner and Sutherland the most eloquent, with Burnett wielding the best punchline: After talking about his junior high teacher, Mr. Baker, who in front of class told him he’d never amount to anything, he added, “I don’t know if that teacher is still around. But if he is, I hope he reads the trades.”

But the award to Varda, a pioneer in the French New Wave whose career contains more than 60 years of adventurous narrative features and documentaries, was in many ways the high point of the evening. Peirce kicked off the presentation with a lengthy description of how influential Varda’s unapologetic female characters were, interweaving a story about her own battles with the MPAA ratings board over a female orgasm depicted in Peirce’s “Boys Don’t Cry.”

Varda looked a little baffled by the comparison, but Peirce brought the house down – as did Documentary Branch governor Kate Amend who began her own remarks by noting, “Well, sadly, we don’t have a lot of orgasms in documentaries.”

Chastain then lauded Varda for her credo that “rebelliousness is part of being a woman,” and Jolie added, “To be around Agnes is to feel more oxygen come into the room.”

The 89-year-old filmmaker tried to brush off the praise, but her eyes welled up and it was clear she was touched. Her own speech was playful and impish, beginning by noting that all her presenters were female – “Are there no men in the room who love me?” – and ending in a little onstage dance with Jolie.

Inarritu’s speech, though, was the most passionate. He received a rare special Oscar for “Carne y Arena,” a VR installation that ran at the Cannes Film Festival and is now at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and one that immerses an audience – one viewer at a time – in the world of immigrants trying to come from Mexico to the United States.

Before receiving the award, Inarritu told TheWrap that he made the film with absolutely no thought of “this awards stuff.” But director and Academy governor Michael Mann pushed for the special award, saying that “Carne y Arena” “is to virtual reality what Eisenstein’s ‘Battleship Potemkin’ was to film.”

“There is no better prize in life than the one you win without competing,” Inarritu said when he took the stage. After a round of thank-yous, his speech turned into a charged denunciation of the ideologies and words that have been used to demonize and stereotype people.

“Only ideologies have f—ed up the world,” he said. ” … When the word ‘rapist’ or ‘illegal alien’ is fired, the reality of a certain human life or community is reduced to an idea, and whoever believes or possesses and fires that idea ends up impoverishing, misleading and degrading their perception of reality.”

He concluded, “I dedicate and receive this beautiful recognition on behalf of all the immigrants from Mexico, Central America, Asia, Africa and all corners of the world whose reality has been ignored and held hostage by ideologies and definitions, denying them the possibility of being understood and loved.”

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Lumière Festival: Michael Mann, Guillermo del Toro talk Michael Mann

LYON, France — Director Michael Mann, a guest of the Lumière Festival, discussed his decades-long career and creative process on Sunday before introducing a restored version of “Heat” never seen before in France. Speaking with Institut Lumière director Thierry Frémaux and fellow filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, Mann said he saw himself as an auteur, adding: […]

LYON, France — Director Michael Mann, a guest of the Lumière Festival, discussed his decades-long career and creative process on Sunday before introducing a restored version of “Heat” never seen before in France. Speaking with Institut Lumière director Thierry Frémaux and fellow filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, Mann said he saw himself as an auteur, adding: […]

Guillermo del Toro Is Making a Documentary About Michael Mann, Which We Hope Will Be Called ‘Mann’s Labyrinth’

Thierry Frémaux announced the project at the Lumière Film Festival.

While presenting the new director’s cut of “Heat” at the Lumière Film Festival, Cannes chief Thierry Frémaux made an announcement sure to please cinephiles: Guillermo del Toro is making a documentary about Michael Mann. That’s enough to make films about well-known auteurs a trend, what with Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow’s “De Palma” and Susan Lacy’s “Spielberg.”

No other information is available as of yet, though the news is in keeping with del Toro’s habit of pursuing as many different movies as possible. (His list of unrealized projects is longer than his actual filmography, with everything from “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” and “The Hobbit” to “At the Mountains of Madness” and “Silent Hills” leaving fans to wonder “what if?” forever.)

Del Toro has sung the “Collateral,” “The Last of the Mohicans,” and “Blackhat” director’s praises on Twitter, calling “Heat” both “a film that is part of the lexicon of the medium” and “a stark Western set in a hyperreal LA.”

19 Books That Scored Better Movie Titles, From ‘Cruel Intentions’ to ‘Die Hard’ (Photos)

It’s #BookLoversDay! So for all you book worms out there, we explored movies that had better titles than the books they were based on.

Based on William Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew,” the adaptation starring Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger brought things to the present day and gave it a more timely title, “10 Things I Hate About You.”

This very loose adaptation of Greek poet Homer’s “The Odyssey” from the Coen brothers changed many details to fit their trademark style, including the title to “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”

Choderlos de Laclos’ “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” got a direct adaptation in 1988, but was given a modern spin with “Cruel Intentions,” which starred Ryan Phillippe, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Reese Witherspoon.

Coming from the mind of Charlie Kaufman, changing the title of “The Orchid Thief” to “Adaptation” was tame. Rather than telling the story of an author’s search for a rare flower, Kaufman instead told the story of his struggles to adapt “The Orchid Thief.”

“Eaters of the Dead” was the original title for John McTiernan’s adaptation, but author Michael Crichton supposedly was so disappointed with the film they changed the name to “The 13th Warrior.”

Nicholas Pileggi’s gangster novel “Wiseguys” was renamed by Martin Scorsese’s to “Goodfellas.” However, the nickname of ‘wiseguys’ is mentioned in the final film.

Hannibal Lecter had his big screen debut before “Silence of the Lambs.” Thomas Harris’ first novel “Red Dragon” was directed by Michael Mann an retitled “Manhunter.” Brian Cox played Lecter.

Related stories from TheWrap:

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11 TV Shows You Forgot Were Based on Comic Books (Photos)

The Best Books From the Defunct ‘Star Wars’ Expanded Universe (Photos)

Barack Obama’s Reading List: 11 Books Recommended by the President (Photos)

It’s #BookLoversDay! So for all you book worms out there, we explored movies that had better titles than the books they were based on.

Based on William Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew,” the adaptation starring Julia Stiles and Heath Ledger brought things to the present day and gave it a more timely title, “10 Things I Hate About You.”

This very loose adaptation of Greek poet Homer’s “The Odyssey” from the Coen brothers changed many details to fit their trademark style, including the title to “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”

Choderlos de Laclos’ “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” got a direct adaptation in 1988, but was given a modern spin with “Cruel Intentions,” which starred Ryan Phillippe, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Reese Witherspoon.

Coming from the mind of Charlie Kaufman, changing the title of “The Orchid Thief” to “Adaptation” was tame. Rather than telling the story of an author’s search for a rare flower, Kaufman instead told the story of his struggles to adapt “The Orchid Thief.”

“Eaters of the Dead” was the original title for John McTiernan’s adaptation, but author Michael Crichton supposedly was so disappointed with the film they changed the name to “The 13th Warrior.”

Nicholas Pileggi’s gangster novel “Wiseguys” was renamed by Martin Scorsese’s to “Goodfellas.” However, the nickname of ‘wiseguys’ is mentioned in the final film.

Hannibal Lecter had his big screen debut before “Silence of the Lambs.” Thomas Harris’ first novel “Red Dragon” was directed by Michael Mann an retitled “Manhunter.” Brian Cox played Lecter.

Related stories from TheWrap:

7 TV Shows to Watch Right Now Based on Books, From 'Game of Thrones' to 'Handmaid's Tale' (Photos)

11 TV Shows You Forgot Were Based on Comic Books (Photos)

The Best Books From the Defunct 'Star Wars' Expanded Universe (Photos)

Barack Obama's Reading List: 11 Books Recommended by the President (Photos)

FX To Turn Mark Bowden Tet Offensive Chronicle ‘Hue 1968’ Into Limited Series; Michael Mann & Michael De Luca Producing

EXCLUSIVE: In a competitive situation, FX has landed the rights to turn the Mark Bowden bestseller Hue 1968 into a limited event series that will span eight-10 hours. Michael Mann and Michael De Luca will creatively quarterback the adaptation of Bowden‘s kaleidoscopic account of the bloody siege that became the turning point of American involvement in the Vietnam War. Mann plans to direct multiple installments of the series, including the opener, and he will produce…

EXCLUSIVE: In a competitive situation, FX has landed the rights to turn the Mark Bowden bestseller Hue 1968 into a limited event series that will span eight-10 hours. Michael Mann and Michael De Luca will creatively quarterback the adaptation of Bowden's kaleidoscopic account of the bloody siege that became the turning point of American involvement in the Vietnam War. Mann plans to direct multiple installments of the series, including the opener, and he will produce…

With The Story Factory, Shane Salerno Is “Revolutionizing The Way Authors Can Be Represented” — Deadline Disruptors

Shane Salerno was an established screenwriter and documentary filmmaker when a conversation with novelist Don Winslow several years ago first spawned a now-substantial business, brokering book and movie deals for authors.
“Don and I had been friends for years,” Salerno says, “and one day he told me, ‘I’ve had it, I’m tired of writing these books that get all this acclaim, and no sales, no marketing, no promotion, no support from my publisher. So, I quit.’ I said, ‘Really…

Shane Salerno was an established screenwriter and documentary filmmaker when a conversation with novelist Don Winslow several years ago first spawned a now-substantial business, brokering book and movie deals for authors. "Don and I had been friends for years," Salerno says, "and one day he told me, 'I've had it, I'm tired of writing these books that get all this acclaim, and no sales, no marketing, no promotion, no support from my publisher. So, I quit.' I said, 'Really…

Michael Mann on ‘Heat,’ 22 Years Later: What We’ve Learned from His Recent Interviews

The genre auteur discusses the action masterpiece he almost didn’t make.

22 years after attaining instant-classic status, “Heat” has been restored and rereleased on Blu-ray. Michael Mann has been making the rounds discussing his action masterpiece to mark the occasion, discussing everything from the performances of Al Pacino and Robert De Niro to more recent films like “Blackhat.” Here are some of his most interesting comments:

READ MORE: Michael Mann to Co-Write ‘Heat’ Prequel Novel With Reed Farrel Coleman

On why he shot it in Los Angeles rather than Chicago, where the events that inspired it took place:

“L.A. is more balkanized than Chicago. There’s a unity to Chicago. It’s got north and south streets. It’s all in a grid. It has a downtown area. Then you have residential neighborhoods. Then it goes on to suburbs. L.A. is all these little cities put together. If you think of L.A. as the County of Los Angeles, it’s bigger than most countries.” (Entertainment Weekly)

On Pacino and De Niro’s approaches to acting:

“To say that an actor has one method of acting versus another method of acting is false with the guys I’ve worked with — who are the best. Pacino’s method of acting is the Pacino method, that’s it. For Al, it’s very much about internalizing the way somebody feels. He memorizes scenes two weeks before he’s gonna shoot them. He wants them to roll around in his consciousness. He’ll dream about them.

“And Bobby is terribly smart — brilliantly analytical. “Why does this guy do that?” and the specifics are all very important. You know, what he’s wearing — all that detail is very expressive of character and feeds something to him. Pacino’s less concerned about what he’s wearing.” (LA Weekly)

READ MORE: Hugh Jackman and Noomi Rapace to Star in Michael Mann’s Ferrari Biopic

“Heat”

On offering the script to Walter Hill:

“Walter Hill and I have been friends since 1972. This is a small community and we talked to each other yesterday. Our families are close. And, he would have been a terrific choice if he wanted to direct it. It wasn’t a matter of approaching a stranger. I know the way Walter thinks and I know his work very, very intimately. And, that’s what that decision of approaching him was based on.” (Vulture)

On what the film would look like if he shot it now:

“Let me put this rather precisely. When you see an emotion on a human’s face, how much of the face do you see? What constitutes fear? What constitutes apprehension? What constitutes suspicion?

“Yes, I evolved, but also, audience perception evolves, and media evolves, year to year. If I shot this film two or three years ago, this particular film would be less chromatic. And the sense of tension would become more pronounced with greater contrast and kind of a more blue-black palette, than the film as I wanted it to be when I shot it in ’94-’95.” (Entertainment Weekly)

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Michael Mann to Adapt ‘Black Hack Down’ Author’s ‘Hue 1968’ as a Miniseries

Mann and Michael De Luca have acquired the rights to Mark Bowden’s Vietnam book, which will be published in June.

Prepare for a Manniseries. Deadline reports that Michael Mann and Michael De Luca have purchased the rights to Mark Bowden’s forthcoming “Hue 1968: The Turning Point in the American War in Vietnam,” which they intend to adapt as an eight-to-10-hour miniseries.

READ MORE: Hugh Jackman and Noomi Rapace to Star in Michael Mann’s Ferrari Biopic

Mann has called “Hue 1968” “a masterpiece of intensely dramatic non-fiction” whose achievement “is in making ‘them’ into us.” Bowden is also the author of “Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War,” whose 2001 film adaptation was directed by Ridley Scott.

“We are them. There are no background people; people abstracted into statistics, body counts,” said Mann. “There is the sense that everybody is somebody, as each is in the reality of his or her own life. The brilliance of Bowden’s narrative, the achievement of interviewing hundreds of people on all sides and making their human stories his foundation, is why ‘Hue 1968’ rises to the emotional power and universality of ‘For Whom the Bell Tolls’ and ‘All Quiet on the Western Front.’”

READ MORE: Michael Mann Once Again Eyes Directing Movie About Crime Kingpins Tony Accardo & Sam Giancana

Mann most recently directed the woefully underrated “Blackhat,” while De Luca, who produces the “Fifty Shades” film adaptations, is also at work on “Under the Silver Lake,” David Robert Mitchell’s follow-up to “It Follows.”

Michael Mann’s ‘Heat’ to Screen Nationwide Ahead of New Home Release

Michael Mann’s 1995 Los Angeles crime saga “Heat” will hit theaters around the country for one night only next month. The May 2 screenings, co-presented by Alamo Drafthouse, serve as a nationwide launch for Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment’s May 9 release of a “Director’s Definitive Edition” Blu-ray and DVD. Additionally, a Q&A with Mann… Read more »

Michael Mann’s 1995 Los Angeles crime saga “Heat” will hit theaters around the country for one night only next month. The May 2 screenings, co-presented by Alamo Drafthouse, serve as a nationwide launch for Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment’s May 9 release of a “Director’s Definitive Edition” Blu-ray and DVD. Additionally, a Q&A with Mann... Read more »

Michael Mann On Muhammad Ali, Will Smith, And His New Cut Of ‘Ali’

Some 15 years after its release and a half year after the death of its subject, a new version of the Michael Mann film Ali is today being re-released on DVD. With a career performance by Will Smith as iconic fighter and Civil Rights era catalyst Muhammad Ali, Ali is slightly different than the version widely seen in late 2001. Mann added footage to existing scenes, and excised a ring sequence where an in-his- prime Ali dominated journeyman heavyweight opponent Cleveland…

Some 15 years after its release and a half year after the death of its subject, a new version of the Michael Mann film Ali is today being re-released on DVD. With a career performance by Will Smith as iconic fighter and Civil Rights era catalyst Muhammad Ali, Ali is slightly different than the version widely seen in late 2001. Mann added footage to existing scenes, and excised a ring sequence where an in-his- prime Ali dominated journeyman heavyweight opponent Cleveland…