January 11, 2013 |
If you're keeping score this Oscar season - and who isn't? - chalk up this year's nominations as a victory for the bullying power of the United States Senate and an undeserved loss for "Zero Dark Thirty" in general and director Kathryn Bigelow in particular. Yes, "Zero Dark" did get five nominations, including best picture, lead actress for Jessica Chastain and original screenplay for Mark Boal. But that was only one more than for the ineffective "Anna Karenina" and nowhere near the 12 picked up by Steven Spielberg's front-running "Lincoln.
January 24, 2013 |
When it comes to cultivating a red carpet identity, lead actress nominee Jessica Chastain hasn't exactly been consistent since she burst on the scene in 2011. Last year alone, she went minimalist-modern in coral Calvin Klein at Cannes, evil fairy godmother in a crinkled, corseted and crystal-embellished Louis Vuitton gown at the Met Ball, over-the-top baroque in a heavy, black-and-gold brocade Alexander McQueen gown at the Oscars and everything in between. But with numerous public appearances in recent weeks to promote dual successes on Broadway in "The Heiress" and on screen for her role as CIA operative Maya in "Zero Dark Thirty," it seems like Chastain's personal brand of chic may finally be coming into focus.
January 11, 2013 |
Sony Pictures co-chair Amy Pascal has replied swiftly and strongly to a member of the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences who said he would not vote for “Zero Dark Thirty” in any Oscar category because of the film's torture scenes. “We are outraged that any responsible member of the academy would use their voting status in AMPAS as a platform to advance their own political agenda,” Pascal said in a statement Friday, responding to an event organized by the character actor David Clennon, who is a member of the academy.
December 21, 2012 |
When it comes to “Zero Dark Thirty,” there's been a lot written about the CIA and torture - whether it looked in real life the way it does on screen, whether it was effective, whether it was ethical. As we've been reporting this week, John McCain and other lawmakers don't agree it went down that way . The film, they say, misrepresents how the CIA found Osama bin Laden. Filmmakers say they've created an accurate depiction. Now that the movie has opened, we thought we'd ask you what you thought of the scenes.
December 19, 2012 |
In both the recently concluded season of Showtime's “Homeland” and the new film “Zero Dark Thirty,” a young female CIA operative becomes obsessed with tracking an elusive terrorist and nearly destroys herself in the process. As it turns out, both “Homeland's” Carrie (an ostensibly fictional character played by Claire Danes ) and “Zero Dark's” Maya (an ostensibly real-life one portrayed by Jessica Chastain) share similarities with an actual agent who doggedly pursued Osama bin Laden . (She makes an appearance as "Jen" in "No Easy Day," written pseudonymously by retired Navy SEAL Mark Owen; the Washington Post describes her as fiercely intelligent, if combative and a little credit-hungry.)
December 15, 2012 |
When the Osama bin Laden-raid film “Zero Dark Thirty” was coming together last year, right-wing commentators scoffed; after all, any film about President Obama's hallmark overseas success timed for a pre-election release had to have partisanship on its mind. Rep Peter King (R-N.Y.) asked whether the administration was getting too cozy with the filmmakers by offering them high-level access. The movie, his questions implied, would be little more than an extended campaign ad for the president as sponsored by Hollywood, the Democrats' resident Super PAC. What a difference a year makes.