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ENTERTAINMENT
October 10, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
The Academy Awards' documentary short subject category is often one of the trickier Oscar races to predict. On Thursday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released a shortlist narrowing the field of contenders down to eight films. That should allow office pollsters and prognosticators to get a jump on the race. Three to five films will be announced as the final nominees along with all the other Oscar nominations on Jan. 16, 2014. OSCARS 2014: Full coverage In alphabetical order, with their production companies, the eight films are: “CaveDigger,” Karoffilms “Facing Fear,” Jason Cohen Productions “Jujitsu-ing Reality,” Sobini Films “Karama Has No Walls,” Hot Spot Films “The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life,” Reed Entertainment “Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall,” Prison Terminal “Recollections,” Notrac productions “SLOMO,” Big Young Films and Runaway Films Malcolm Clarke, director of "The Lady in Number 6," won in the same category in 1989 for "You Don't Have to Die. " The 86th Academy Awards will take place on Sunday, March 2. ALSO: A record 76 foreign-language Oscar submissions 'Wadjda' first Saudi entry for foreign language race With 'Wadjda' director makes her mark in Saudi cinema Follow Mark Olsen on Twitter: @IndieFocus
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ENTERTAINMENT
September 17, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
Spitfire Pictures, the documentary film production arm of Exclusive Media, is teaming up with the Southern California start-up Tongal to crowd-source a new movie. Tongal is best known for linking its community of film directors and writers with brands such as McDonald's and Pringles to make commercials. Through its partnership with Spitfire -- the company behind the football film "Undefeated" and the Martin Scorsese-directed Bob Dylan documentary "No Direction Home" -- Tongal is entering the full-length film space.  SNEAKS: Movie trailers, full coverage “We always knew that we had people from all over the world and that documentary would be a good way to pull good stories from anyone and anywhere," said James De Julio, Tongal's co-founder and chief product officer.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 20, 2013 | By Rebecca Keegan
"Life Itself," a documentary about the life of film critic Roger Ebert, launched a crowd-funding campaign Wednesday to raise $150,000 through the website Indiegogo. The film, which is directed by "Hoop Dreams" director Steve James and produced by Martin Scorsese, is based on Ebert's memoir of the same name. In exchange for a $25 donation, supporters will receive a link to view "Life Itself" in advance of its theatrical release, which is planned for early 2014 under the CNN Films banner.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 20, 2012 | By Gary Goldstein
Dori Berinstein's documentary "Carol Channing: Larger Than Life" is a terrifically entertaining, smartly constructed trip down memory lane with one of the American stage's most legendary troupers. Although the 90-years-young Channing may be instantly recalled for her saucer-eyed, red-lipped, raspy-voiced loopiness — and as an affectionate target of comic impressionists and drag performers alike — this enlightening valentine to a game, devoted and ebullient talent deftly belies the caricature.
NEWS
December 27, 2012 | By Susan Denley
Lady Gaga and famed photographer Terry Richardson are teaming up to make a documentary about her life and the making of her forthcoming album "Artpop," she said in a Christmas tweet. [Styleite] Also busy tweeting over Christmas was Jessica Simpson, who confirmed that, seven months after having a baby girl, she is pregnant again. It won't affect her gig as a Weight Watchers' spokeswoman, apparently, though she won't be dieting again until after the baby is born. [The Cut] The wetsuit that allows surfers to catch waves in frigid Pacific waters no matter the season was invented 60 years ago in California and has now grown into a $100 million a year industry.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 24, 2012 | By John Horn
The anti-President Obama documentary "2016: Obama's America," is off to a strong start in its first weekend of national release and could gross more than $6 million between Friday and Sunday, placing it far ahead of the new horror movie "The Apparition" and in a virtual dead heat with the new action comedy "Hit & Run. " Preliminary box office estimates show that "Obama's America," which is based on conservative author  Dinesh D'Souza's book...
WORLD
March 22, 2013 | By Ingy Hassieb
CAIRO - The battle between censors and filmmakers over "Jews of Egypt" ended this week when authorities granted permission for the documentary to be shown despite fears it may agitate Egypt's anti-Israeli hatred amid months of political unrest and nationwide protests. The film by director Amir Ramses raised a dilemma over security versus artistic freedom at a time when the rise of conservative Islamist voices has sharpened religious and cultural differences. The documentary explores the life of Egypt's Jewish community before the second Arab-Israeli war in 1956.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 19, 2014 | By John Horn
PARK CITY, Utah -- Mitt Romney may have a home in Park City, but he's not the kind of person you'd expect to attend a movie at the Sundance Film Festival, whose programming leans liberal, particularly among the documentaries. But the former presidential candidate dropped in to the first Sundance screening of “Mitt,” an unusually candid and largely flattering look at Romney shot over the course of his two presidential campaigns. Filmmaker Greg Whitely was given entree to Romney and his family, yet shut out from the campaign strategy meetings that are the staple of movies, books and articles about the political process.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2013 | By Nicole Sperling
The Directors Guild of America nominated two female documentarians, Lauren Greenfield ("The Queen of Versailles") and Alison Klayman ("Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry"), among three male directors for outstanding directorial achievement in documentaries for 2012. Both women were left off the Academy Awards' nomination list for feature documentaries. Greenfield, whose film about a billionaire couple who lose it all in the real estate crisis, and Klayman, who explores Chinese artist and activist Ai, will compete against Kirby Dick ("The Invisible War")
ENTERTAINMENT
June 12, 2012 | By Chris Barton
Chinese artist-activist Ai Weiwei may be still under house arrest by Chinese authorities, but the march toward the film documenting his art and actions continues. A Sundance Jury Prize-winner at this year's festival, "Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry" opens in New York on July 27, and a recently released trailer showcases the movie's mix of fly-on-the-wall storytelling and talking head interviews under the direction of freelance journalist and first-time filmmaker Alison Klayman. The trailer opens on a viral-video-friendly note in featuring one of the artist's cats pulling off the exceptional trick of opening a closed door.
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