TAG | Michael Fassbender
The 2014 Independent Spirit Awards nominations have been announced, and director Steve McQueen’s excellent drama 12 Years a Slave tops the nominees with seven nods, including Best Feature, Best Director, and Best Actor. Nebraska is not far behind with six nominations, and the Robert Redford drama All Is Lost also did well with four nods. The much-beloved Short Term 12 failed to land a Best Feature nomination, but Primer director Shane Carruth’s twisty second feature Upstream Color landed nods for Best Director and Best Editing. The Best Actor category is a strong mirror of the very tight Oscar race in the same category, and the wonderful Shailene Woodley and Brie Larson nabbed Best Actress nominations for The Spectacular Now and Short Term 12, respectively. Hit the jump for the full list of nominations and additional commentary. The Independent Spirit Awards will be hosted on March 1, 2014. As far as snubs go, it’s disappointing not to see Miles Teller recognized for his stellar work in The Spectacular Now or the lovely Greta Gerwig who grounds Frances Ha, and Before Midnight would have been a worthy addition to the Best Feature category. That being said, this year is a highly competitive awards race (as evidenced by the Best Actor category expanding to six nominees), so it's tough to argue with this list of nominees. Pleasant surprises include James Gandolfini (Enough Said) and Will Forte (Nebraska) landing Best Supporting Actor nods, Gaby Hoffmann receiving a Best Female Lead nomination for her work in the Michael Cera ...
20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for director Bryan Singer's sequel/prequel X-Men: Days of Future Past. The story finds Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) having his consciousness sent back to 1973 in order to help Professor X (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), and the rest of the X-Men: First Class crew stop the rise of the Sentinels, giant robots programmed to exterminate mutants. This trailer is extremely similar to the footage they showed at Comic-Con this summer (right down to the Hans Zimmer score), which sent Hall H into a frenzy. It does an excellent job of conveying the darker tone of the film as well as teasing the spectacle that will be on display, and I really can't wait to see more. Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Ian McKellan, Patrick Stewart, Peter Dinklage, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, Omar Sy, and Halle Berry. X-Men: Days of Future Past opens in 3D May 23, 2014. Here's a synopsis for X-Men: Days of Future Past: The ultimate X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST. The beloved characters from the original "X-Men" film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from "X-Men: First Class," in an epic battle that must change the past -- to save our future.
Gravity’s winning streak came to an end this weekend, courtesy of Johnny Knoxville. Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa easily claimed first place in its debut with an estimated $32 million from 3,366 locations. Also in its first frame, Ridley Scott’s The Counselor was far less impressive. The Fox thriller took in just $8 million in spite of its A-list cast. Fox Searchlight had better results with 12 Years a Slave. The early Oscar contender earned a spot in the top ten on the strength of just 123 venues. Title Weekend Total 1. Bad Grandpa $32,000,000 $32 2. Gravity $20,300,000 $199.8 3. Captain Phillips $11,800,000 $70 4. The Counselor $8,000,000 $8 5. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 $6,100,000 $100.6 6. Carrie $5,900,000 $26 7. Escape Plan $4,340,000 $17.4 8. 12 Years a Slave $2,150,000 $3.4 9. Enough Said $1,555,000 $13 10. Prisoners $1,063,000 $59.1 Somehow, when considering the great franchises of the past two decades, the Jackass brand never quite makes the cut. In truth, Jackass probably doesn’t deserve to be counted alongside the likes of Pirates of the Caribbean and Harry Potter – four-quadrant series that each earned over $1 billion in domestic sales alone. By comparison, Jackass is a box office bit player. With today’s estimate included, the four Jackass films have earned just under $300 million, which puts the series between American Pie and Final Destination among R-rated franchises of comparable longevity. Of course, that R-rating is the key distinction that separates Jackass films from the giant franchises. Though the films attract the coveted young-male demographic, they don’t necessarily appeal beyond that audience. With that being said, the Jackass brand has remained remarkably resilient and incredibly profitable. All of the Jackass titles have debuted in first place – quite an achievement ...
Expanding into more theaters this weekend is one of the best films of the year: director Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave. Based on Solomon Northup’s autobiography of the same name, the true story chronicles his twelve-year journey as an educated and married free man from New York who was abducted in 1841 and forced into slavery for over a decade. The film is absolutely one of the best of the year and features powerful performances by the whole cast, especially Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, and Lupita Nyong’O, and it will be a major player in this year’s awards race. For more on the film, read Matt’s review. At the recent New York City press day, I landed an exclusive video interview with Fassbender. He talked about how McQueen's movies always feel real and the scenes and characters believable, and what is it like to have so many people loving the movie. He also talked about what he collects as well as future projects like the Prometheus sequel, confirmed that filming on Assassin’s Creed begins next year, and attempted to come up with a good tease for fans regarding X-Men: Days of Future Past. Hit the jump to watch and make sure to see 12 Years a Slave as soon as you can. Michael Fassbender: How he's been on a role with great roles since Hunger What is it like to have so many people loving the movie How McQueen's movies always feel real and the scenes and characters believable. Any update on a Prometheus sequel? What's ...
Though it’s only October, we’re already in the thick of awards season. We’ve seen frontrunners emerge from the fall festival circuit, and now some of the year’s potential heavy hitters are starting to open in theaters, providing some hard data for the all-important “audience reception” factor in the Oscar race. Gravity emerged as a potential frontrunner for a number of awards—including Best Picture—when it screened at the Toronto International Film Festival, Venice, and Telluride earlier this year, and now the film can add “box office hit” to its resume, as the pic opened to a record-breaking $55.5 million in its first weekend and only dropped an incredible 21% in its second weekend. In today’s edition of Oscar Beat, we examine the importance of box office in the Oscar race and what this means for Gravity and the other awards contenders going forward. Additionally, I update my predictions to reflect movements in the recent weeks. Hit the jump to read on. When looking at the Oscar race, it’s always important to take into account box office results. Statistically speaking, a healthy box office total bodes well for a film’s chances. In fact, in the past 15 years only four Best Picture winners have grossed less than $100 million at the box office, with The Hurt Locker taking the cake as the lowest-grossing Best Picture winner of all time* with a mere $17 million. This doesn’t mean that Oscar voters only choose successful films for Best Picture, but the Academy does appear take into account ...
20th Century Fox has released a new clip from Ridley Scott's The Counselor. The script by Cormac McCarthy (author of The Road and No Country for Old Men) centers on an attorney (Michael Fassbender) who teams with Reiner (Javier Bardem) to sell $20 million worth of cocaine. In the clip, Fassbender's character has a conversation with a sale clerk (Natalie Dormer) about purchasing women's undergarments. It's an incredibly odd scene not because of the content, but because of Scott's direction. The tone of the scene is almost sinister, and the way it ends almost makes me think there's an error in the player. The dialogue keeps going but the character's lips stop moving, so it looks like they have a telepathic bond. It gets stranger from there. Hit the jump to check out the clip. The film also stars Brad Pitt, Dean Norris, Rosie Perez, John Leguizamo, and Goran Visnjic. The Counselor opens October 25th. [Update: The clip is technically "viral footage" whatever that means.] Via GQ. Here's the official synopsis for The Counselor: Legendary filmmaker Ridley Scott and Pulitzer Prize winning author Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men) have joined forces in the motion picture thriller THE COUNSELOR, starring Michael Fassbender, Penélope Cruz, Cameron Diaz, Javier Bardem, and Brad Pitt. McCarthy, making his screenwriting debut and Scott interweave the author’s characteristic wit and dark humor with a nightmarish scenario, in which a respected lawyer’s one-time dalliance with an illegal business deal spirals out of control.
Fox Searchlight has released the first clip from 12 Years a Slave. The true story is based on Solomon Northup’s autobiography of the same name, and stars Chiwetel Ejiofor (Children of Men) as Northup, an educated and married black man living in New York in 1841. Northup was approached by two men about a job offer in Washington D.C., but when he showed up he was kidnapped and forced into slavery for over a decade. The clip features one of the film’s more potent scenes where Solomon, before he’s kidnapped and sold into slavery, chooses to turn a blind-eye to the heinous institution. Hit the jump to check out the clip along with some new images. The film also stars Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Giamatti, Quvenzhane Wallis, Sarah Paulson, Paul Dano, Scoot McNairy, Garrett Dillahunt, Alfre Woodard, Dwight Henry, Michael K. Williams, and Brad Pitt. 12 Years a Slave opens on October 18th. Click here to read my review from the Toronto International Film Festival. Clip via Vulture. ? Images via Huffington Post and The Playlist. [gallery link="file" columns="1" ids="285094,285118,285097,285095,285115,285096,285117,285116,285114,285113,285112,285111,285110"] Here’s the official synopsis for 12 Years a Slave: 12 YEARS A SLAVE is based on an incredible true story of one man’s fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender) as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. In the twelfth year of his unforgettable odyssey, Solomon’s ...
Here's a look at today's latest casting news: Michael Fassbender (Prometheus), Ben Mendelsohn (The Place Beyond the Pines) and Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) will join the Western Slow West, from debut feature director John Maclean. Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies) will join Jennifer Lopez in Rob Cohen's micro-budget thriller, The Boy Next Door. Hit the jump for more on both pictures. Sounds like Fassbender will get his Western after all, even if it's not Jane Got a Gun. Word on Slow West comes in part from Daily Mail and Inside Film (via The Playlist). While Fassbender is on his way to becoming a household name, Slow West would be the feature debut for director Maclean. The two previously collaborated on the short films Pitch Black Heist and Man on a Motorcycle. Details are scant on the film so far except to say that it's a Colorado-set Western that will film in New Zealand. Fassbender would lead the film; no details are available for Mendelsohn or Smit-McPhee. Heat Vision reports that Chenoweth will join The Boy Next Door. The Blumhouse production stars Lopez as "a newly separated mother who finds herself attracted to the teenage boy who moves in next door and befriends her son. When she starts and then abruptly ends their illicit romance, he’s not ready to let her go" in a stabby sort of way. Chenoweth is set to play Lopez's best friend. Scripted by Barbara Curry, The Boy Next Door is scheduled to shoot sometime later this fall.
Michael Fassbender is an incredible actor, so it’s no wonder that he’s found himself at the center of some of the more exciting film franchises as of late in addition to fascinating dramatic fare. Steve recently sat down with Fassbender to discuss his work in Steve McQueen’s immensely powerful and moving 12 Years a Slave, which opens in theaters next month and is absolutely one of the best films of the year, and during the course of their conversation Fassbender briefly addressed his work in a couple of other upcoming films. He admitted that he’s unsure about the status of the Prometheus sequel, confirmed that filming on Assassin’s Creed begins next year, and attempted to come up with a good tease for fans regarding X-Men: Days of Future Past. Hit the jump to watch what he had to say, and look for Steve’s full interview with Fassbender on Collider soon.
It’s easy to draw the lines regarding slavery in America as “good” and “evil” where the enslavers were evil and everyone else was good. When the issue of slavery culminated in the Civil War, the battle lines were drawn between the “good” north and the “evil” south. As long as we know someone else is to blame for the evil in the world, then we remove all culpability from ourselves. With unflinching, heart-wrenching honesty, Steve McQueen’s adaptation of Solomon Northrup’s memoir 12 Years a Slave shows that the issue of slavery wasn’t as simple as black-and-white. There were shades of grey regarding slavery even among slaves. The evil of slavery isn’t in question, and McQueen shows it in all its ugliness. He shows slavery to the point of how it not only wears away a person’s body, but also their identity and even their soul. The exploration in 12 Years a Slave is into the culpability of all men and women, free and slave, in this unquestionable evil. In 1841, Solomon Northrup (Chiwetel Ejiofor) is a free man living in Saratoga, New York. Locally renowned for his skill at the violin, he is hired under false pretenses to play in Washington, D.C. Once there, he is drugged, kidnapped, and sold into slavery under the name “Platt”. In order to preserve his life, Solomon must keep his head down, his true background a secret, and hold on to any shred of hope of seeing his family again. Over the course of Solomon’s ...