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September 2014

Iain Blair
Iain Blair has interviewed industry's top filmmakers, including George Clooney, Quentin Tarantino, Brett Ratner, Rob Reiner and many, many more.
Authored Articles
Director's Chair: Shawn Levy - 'This Is Where I Leave You'
Published: September 8, 2014

Although he may not be a household name, director/producer Shawn Levy is one of the most commercially-successful film directors of the past 15 years. To date, his films, including The Internship, Date Night, Real Steel, What Happens in Vegas, The Pink Panther, Cheaper By The Dozen and the blockbuster  Night at the Museum franchise, have grossed over two billions dollars worldwide. And while Woody Allen’s a-film-a-year output is viewed with awe as the gold standard of workmanlike creativity, Levy is currently even more prolific, with three major films due for release in the next few months.
Director's Chair: Tate Taylor - 'Get On Up'
Published: August 5, 2014

With just one small comedy — the 2008 Pretty Ugly People — on his resume, Tate Taylor’s directing career got turbo-charged thanks to his 2011 triumphant and Oscar-winning  The Help, which he also co-wrote and co-produced. Now, the Mississippi native has tackled another story that’s both dear to his heart and close to his roots —  Get On Up, the biopic of James Brown, the “Godfather of Soul,” embodied by Chadwick Boseman, who gave another magical performance as Jackie Robinson in  42.
Director's Chair: Matt Reeves - 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes'
Published: July 10, 2014

In 2011, the Fox reboot Rise of the Planet of the Apes, starring James Franco, Freida Pinto, Andy Serkis and a bunch of genetically-enhanced chimps who get ready to take over the world, turned into a critical and commercial success, scoring nearly half a billion at the box office. Three years later,  Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the sequel — and eighth film in the long-running franchise — picks up the story, and things look even grimmer for what’s left of the human race. A growing nation of smart, evolved apes, led by Caesar (Serkis), are in charge thanks to the devastating virus unleashed in San Francisco a decade earlier. But a small band of human survivors (including Gary Oldman and Keri Russell) soon clash with the apes in a struggle that will determine who will emerge as Earth’s dominant species.
Director's Chair: Doug Liman — 'Edge of Tomorrow'
Published: June 5, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Doug Liman first made his name directing the low-budget 1996 comedy Swingers, before proceeding to redefine the action spy thriller with the hugely successful The Bourne Identity, followed by another global smash, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, and the sci-fi thriller Jumper.
Director's Chair: Wally Pfister - 'Transcendence'
Published: May 6, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Since he became director Christopher Nolan’s go-to cinematographer after shooting Memento a decade and a half ago, Wally Pfister has established himself as one of the top DPs in the business. In addition to shooting Nolan’s acclaimed  Batman trilogy, which earned Pfister two Oscar nominations, he also shot Nolan’s  The Prestige (receiving another Oscar nomination) and  Inception (which won him the Oscar), as well as such diverse films as  Moneyball,InsomniaThe Italian Job and  Laurel Canyon.
Director's Chair: Darren Aronofsky - 'Noah'
Published: April 1, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Writer-director Darren Aronofsky, whose last film, 2010’s Black Swan, won Best Picture and Best Director Oscar nominations, first made a big splash when his debut low-budget feature Pi won the prestigious Director’s Award at the 1998 Sundance Film Festival. He then quickly followed that up with 1999’s  Requiem for a Dream. But his hot streak and momentum came to a screeching halt in 2002 when Brad Pitt dropped out of his expensive, ambitious sci-fi epic  The Fountain — just weeks before shooting was due to start. Undaunted, Aronofsky recast and rewrote it, and its visually-stunning imagery and cutting edge visual effects helped pave the way for his latest massive production,  Noah.
Director's Chair: Justin Chadwick — 'Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom'
Published: March 6, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Based on his 1994 autobiography of the same name, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom chronicles the inspirational life of the late Nelson Mandela, from freedom fighter to Nobel Peace Prize-winning statesman and international icon.
Director's Chair: Peter Berg - 'Lone Survivor'
Published: February 11, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Peter Berg may have started out as an actor in such shows and films as 21 Jump Street and Race For Glory, but it’s when he moved behind the camera that his career really took off, thanks to hits like Hancock, The Kingdom and Friday Night Lights, which he also turned into the award-winning TV series of the same name.
Oscar Picks
Published: January 15, 2014

In terms of Oscar-worthy films, 2013 followed the usual release pattern; the first eight or nine months of the year saw a handful of potential contenders, including Fruitvale Station, The Great Gatsby, Lee Daniels’ The Butler, Mud and Blue Jasmine, but it’s in the final stretch where the studios stack up serious projects (along with a few more light-hearted movies) such as Nebraska, 12 Years A Slave, Captain Phillips, Gravity, Mandela; Long Walk To Freedom, Lone Survivor, The Wolf of Wall Street, The Book Thief, American Hustle, All Is Lost, The Fifth Estate, August: Osage County, Her, Philomena, Labor Day, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Dallas Buyers Club, Inside Llewyn Davis and Saving Mr. Banks. Will Oscar as usual turn a blind eye to earlier releases in favor of the year-end releases? Impossible to tell, but with all that in mind, we now look into our crystal ball and present our annual top picks list of likely nominees.
Director's Chair: David O. Russell — 'American Hustle'
Published: January 15, 2014

HOLLYWOOD — Director/writer David O. Russell, who made his directorial debut with 1994’s dark comedy Spanking the Monkey, has since amassed a small but diverse body of work that includes the Gulf War thriller Three Kings, the existential comedy I Heart Huckabees, and the sports drama The Fighter, which earned him Oscar Best Picture and Best Director nominations. He repeated those nominations with 2012’s Silver Linings Playbook, a hit drama about bipolar disorder.
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