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New Annenberg Data

This just in from Annenberg:  “The researchers found some evidence that movies with women in creative production roles may give female actors more chances for work. In movies with at least one female director, 44.4% of speaking characters were females as well, compared to 31.7% in all-male-directed films. A similar gender boost was observed in […]

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Kudos J.E. Shepherd

Filmmaker Gaylen Ross (Killing Kasztner) posted a link to Shepherd’s article on my FB thread about Black Swan.  Great catch, Gaylen! Crazy Chicks Are Hot? 8 Messed-Up Portrayals of Women Going Insane in Film By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd On the cusp of Black Swan’s sure wins, we look at the misogyny that drives the meme of the […]

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Kudos Ruth Franklin

While I was reading about Black Swan on TNR this AM, I also found this related piece by Ruth Franklin in which she says:  “The VIDA statistics made me wonder afresh about the ways we define ‘best’ and ‘most important’ in a field as subjective as literature, which, after all, is deeply influenced by the cultural […]

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Kudos Jennifer Homans

Jennifer Homans (Dance Critic for The New Republic) posted a great piece about Black Swan today.  I saw Black Swan myself way back in October at our 2010 Chicago International Film Festival & I really, really hated it.  I hated it so much that I could barely sit in my seat. Dumb me: I went in […]

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Why is Oscar still so BLUE?

Click HERE for updated Oscar Impact chart.   Once again, AMPAS has nominated five men in the Best Director category.  A total of eight nominations were parceled out to two films both of which were written AND directed by women: The Kids Are All Right & Winter’s Bone.       Both films received nominations in the […]

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Oscars 2011: Game On!

New stats from Box Office Mojo  Please look closely at this chart: Conviction (#10 last week) slipped slightly to #12, but more important, it increased theater count (up 107% from 565 to 672) while retaining a very high per screen average.  (At $2,424 per screen, it holds the number THREE position when you eliminate the […]

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THE TEMPEST (2010): Review by Jan Lisa Huttner

Julie Taymor’s new adaptation of The Tempest is a marvel of sight and sound! First performed in 1611, William Shakespeare’s final play is the culmination of both life wisdom and theatrical craft. The focus of Shakespeare’s drama is a wizard named Prospero. Once the ruler of Milan, Prospero was deposed by his brother, set adrift, […]

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Brava, Sarah Bouyain!

  Week One of the 46th annual Chicago International Film Festival is now history.  Week Two begins today.  Many wonderful films in this year’s ReelWomen series J  Last night we saw a lovely film called The Place In Between set partly in Burkina Faso & partly in France.  Written & directed by Sarah Bouyain, The […]

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More Kudos to Peter Knegt

Peter is the same guy from IndieWIRE who posted “Summer Box Office Report: Women Rule the Art Houses” a few weeks ago.  Now he’s back with “10 Underdog Actresses,” & while I haven’t seen all the performances on his list yet, I’m already rooting for some of these wonderful ladies too!  Here are some of […]

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Congrats to Christy Lemire!

9/13/10 Update: Wow, 7 minute mini-show is already on YouTube with a segment on Women Filmmakers to boot!!! Yay, Roger!!!  Yay, Chaz!!!  A new day dawns J Click HERE for Press Release      Roger Ebert announced a new TV review show today, “Roger Ebert Presents At the Movies,” which he will produce with his wife […]

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Great News from IndieWire!

  SUMMER BOX OFFICE REPORT: WOMEN RULE THE ART HOUSES “…One would be hard-pressed to find an example of such dominance in specialty summers of yore…” It’s what I keep saying, folks: You DO NOT have to see s&%t just because it’s easy.  Find someone you trust (hopefully me), & you’ll soon discover all the wonderful films […]

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Shout-Out to Edie Falco!

Kudos to Edie Falco, winner of the 62nd Annual Primetime Emmy Award for Best Actress in a Comedy Series in her role as NURSE JACKIE.  For all those years that Falco played back-up on THE SOPRANOS, here’s proof that the lady can carry her own show with heart, soul, & true brilliance. Shout-Out to Edie Falco: […]

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Shout-Out to Debra Granik!

According to Box Office Mojo, gross domestic revenue for Winter’s Bone now stands @ $4,857,444.  Winter’s Bone opened on 4 screens on 6/11, & it’s now playing on over a hundred screens nationwide (including here in Metro Chicago), meaning it’s likely to cross the $5M mark this weekend.      In other words, Winter’s Bone (directed by Debra […]

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EAT PRAY LOVE

    Cinematic adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert’s incredibly successful memoir (written & directed by Ryan Murphy with assist from actress turned screenwriter Jennifer Salt) has all the right pieces (charismatic stars, fabulous location shots, terrific soundtrack), but in the end, there’s no there there, making the whole far less than the sum of its parts. […]

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Bravo, Melissa!

     Kudos to activist blogger Melissa Silverstein for her great new logo, playfully simulating movie clapper imagery (“Take One: Action!” ) but also visually communicating the gap between where women are in Hollywood right now (at an angle) versus where we have every right to be (fully equal).      Melissa is now one of Third Wave Feminism’s most prominent cyberspace voices, & […]

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Great Minds…

 think alike?  This morning I learned for the first time that a Massachussets couple has been running in parallel with us all thru “the 00’s” on a site called Reeling Reviews.  I found them because I went on to Rotten Tomatoes in search of commentary on Agora (the new film about Egyptian mathematician Hypatia starring Rachel […]

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Penny Wins State/National Awards!

On December 11, 2008, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association announced their 2009 Golden Globe Nominations… and Penny went ballistic. I was stunned when Loveleen Tandan (Slumdog Millionaire’s credited co-director) was not named as Danny Boyle’s co-nominee in the “Best Director” category.  But my outrage quickly turned into energy, and I started an e-mail campaign on […]

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Whitney Gets an A!

From Whitney Daleiden: “I took Jill Coleman’s Psychology of Women class at Roosevelt University this past semester, and I had to complete a “social activism” project.  I convinced Professor Coleman to let me make a short PSA on women in the film industry (inspired by you!).      Most of my peers ended up taking a […]

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Brava Feo Aladag!

Sending congratulations to German actress Feodora (Feo) Aladag—the big winner in this year’s Tribecca Film Festival.  Her film WHEN WE LEAVE (DIE FREMDE) won the Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature in this year’s World Narrative Competition.  Aladag is credited as director, screenwriter & producer… & this is her first time behind the camera! On […]

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SHUTTER ISLAND

Seems Oscar wasn’t enough for director Martin Scorsese.  Seems he couldn’t rest until he’d made “a Holocaust film.”  But despite all the talented people involved (including wonderful actresses Patricia Clarkson, Emily Mortimer & Michelle Williams), this film is a total mess.  Barely 5 minutes in, it was already close to unwatcheable, & by the end (minute […]

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Kudos to Shankar Vedantam!

Best book of the year? THE HIDDEN BRAIN by Shankar Vedantam. Chapter 5 (The Invisible Current: Gender, Privilege & the Hidden Brain) begins with the words: “Lilly Ledbetter’s life followed a clockwork routine…” It’s just like Kathryn Bigelow told Leslie Stahl on 60 MINUTES one week before becoming the first woman to win an Oscar for […]

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Morning After Message

If you find you have mixed feelings about last night’s big barrier buster (a woman won the Best Director Oscar for a film that has almost no women in it, a woman won the Best Director Oscar but didn’t thank any of the women who came before her, whatever) then I beg you to look beyond […]

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David & Goliath?

    “…if The Hurt Locker wins, it will be the lowest grossing best picture honoree in decades of Oscar winners.  It’s earned just over $12.6 million in a theatrical release that wrapped up late last year.  Avatar on the other hand would be the highest grossing best picture winner.  It’s made more than $706 million […]

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Ominous Silence

Oh, my…  Ominous silence in response to my “Blue Oscar” chart, except for one [male] friend who wrote: “I don’t think women should block vote, whether it be a film director, political candidate, or whatever…” It’s painful to read the statement “just vote with your heart for the films, performances, and technical accomplishments that you […]

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An Open Letter to the Women of AMPAS

Why YOU should vote for The Hurt Locker “The ‘cumulative’ factor of a series of pre-Oscar wins can be a powerful aphrodisiac for Academy voters.”  So says Pete Hammond of the LA Times, quoting “one producer and former studio head who told me he very much understands the psychology of Oscar voting.” Yes, ladies, the […]

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Well, I’ll be damned…

Click HERE to download UPDATED 2010 Oscar Impact Chart (pdf).    Kudos to my AAUW-Illinois sister Leslie Sulla for jerking my chain!  In fact there are FOUR female screenwriters impacting this year’s high profile Oscars: Philippa Boyens & Fran Walsh (The Lovely Bones), Nora Ephron (Julie & Julia) AND Terri Tatchell (District 9).  OK, so […]

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2010 Oscar Impact Chart

Click HERE to download Oscar Impact Chart for 2010 as a pdf file.    Here is a 2010 update of my award-winning Oscar Impact chart.  As everyone with any interest in this topic already knows, Kathryn Bigelow is the fourth woman ever nominated for a Best Director Oscar, & the very first woman to actually […]

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Life Goes On…

Click HERE to download Oscar Impact Chart for ‘09 as a pdf file.   So I never updated my award-winning Oscar Impact chart last year…  I guess I was so bummed out by “My SLUMDOG Brouhaha” that I just couldn’t bring myself to post numbers that didn’t include Loveleen Tandan… But what a difference a […]

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For Shame, WGA!

So Up in the Air just won another “Best Adapted Screenplay” award (this time from the Writers Guild of America) for condescending use of the sorrows of real people as “topical garnish on a Cary Grant movie” (credit for these well-chosen words go to my fellow Chicagoan Jim Jones). Me, I’m personally, I’m incensed about […]

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Unacceptable Behavior

“’I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated. What I did was not acceptable,’ said [Tiger] Woods, looking composed and speaking in a steady voice.”  Now if only certain extremely well-known male movie critics would say the same about “Connor” in FISH TANK & “David” in AN EDUCATION, then I just might die & go […]

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