After Brett Ratner pulled a Berlusconi and Eddie Murphy swiftly followed suit, the internet exploded in a giant bull of fuzzy joy yesterday with one absolutely genius idea: The Muppets should host the Oscars in 2012.
Since then, no doubt tons of people have written blog posts arguing why (and new Oscars producer Brian Grazer better be reading ALL of them). Their impossibly likeable charm, the genuinely hilarious jokes, witty and original spoofs of award contenders, song and dance numbers to rival Neil Patrick Harris and Hugh Jackman, and (of course) the fact that ABC are owned by Disney anyway.
But rather than list all of those arguments again in massive detail, there's one simple reason why The Muppets should host the Oscars: they've been presenting them (and Emmys) for years.
Here's some video proof that The Muppets already know their way around an awards ceremony...
Shame, Tinker, Tailor, Tyrannosaur. It's been a brilliant year for indie films. And those are just the three with the most nominations in the British Independent Film Awards, which seem designed to make life as difficult as possible for everyone.
Each movie has seven nominations each, including Best British Independent Film, Best Actor and Best Director. How on earth are we meant to choose which is best?
And then there are all the others. In second place, We Need to Talk About Kevin and Kill List both have six nominations, followed closely by Submarine with five. Meanwhile, The Awakening and Jane Eyre join the fray in the Best Actress categories, while The Guard sees Brendan Gleeson start to collect his inevitable haul of Best Actor nods.
Attack The Block's Joe Cornish and Ralph Fiennes for Coriolanus are up for Best Director, and Best Newcomer is surely destined to hang around the neck of Albatross's Jessica Brown Findlay. It's also great to see the Raindance Award mentioning Black Pond, A Thousand Kisses Deep and Acts of Godfrey. All three are rather lovely.
But are we really meant to be able to say who is better out of Senna and Project Nim? Tinker Tailor and Shame? Tyrannosaur and Submarine? How are us mere humans meant to pick? HOW? IT'S IMPOSSIBLE. THEY'RE ALL REALLY, REALLY GOOD. I HATE YOU BIFA AWARDS. YOU SUCK.
The awards are handed out on Sunday 4th December - and will be broadcast live on LOVEFiLM. Which is another superb decision from BIFA. Damn them.
Read on for the full list of nominations.
You remember when I said that our Acts of Godfrey interview was the last you'd here about the 19th Raindance Film Festival? Well, I lied.
Our final final piece of Raindance news is that British indie flick Stranger Things won the award for Best UK Feature. Which is rather well deserved, really, given its superb performances and delicate cinematography (you can read out Stranger Things review here).
Other winners included the Croatian/Serbian/Slovenian co-production Just Between Us, which picked up Best International Feature, Bulgaria’s Tilt, which bagged Best Debut Feature, How To Start A Revolution, which beat the awesome Holy Rollers to win Best Documentary, and the UK’s Monk3ys, which was declared Best Microbudget Feature.
Meanwhile, in the short film categories, Denmark’s Words was officially labelled the Best International Short and Love At First Sight was crowned Best UK Short. But the Italian short film Reset won the big award of the evening: Film of the Festival.
Naturally, we haven't seen any of these other winners - we were too busy writing a review in rhyming couplets (do you know how long that takes?) but the jury had seen them all, including actor Dexter Fletcher, director Gillies Mackinnon, and presenter Alex Zane.
The awards were dished out last Saturday at the lovely Apollo West End, with Festival Director Elliot Grove saying: “There were some outstanding films across the whole line-up so selecting winners was especially difficult this year."
Of course, we all know that Heaven+Earth+Joe Davis and Acts of Godfrey should have won, but the best news of all? Raindance attendance rose by 62% this year, which is great for fans of indie film and the filmmakers themselves. In short, EVERYONE'S A WINNER. (But we're claiming credit for at least 0.05% of those extra people, yeah?)
Well, the voting closed yesterday and after a full two minutes of counting your votes, I can confirm that the inaugural i-Flicks Falling Star Award has been decided.
2011's Falling Star is...
After The Last Airbender's paltry £4.2m takings in the UK, it's safe to say that The Sixth Sense director won't be given another franchise to start up any time soon. Ever since Signs, Shyamalan's been a bit pants, but Airbender (*fnarf* BENDER) put the final downward swing on his career. Unless Devil (aka HELLEVATOR) and the rest of the "Night Chronicles" (he used his name!) do ridiculously well on DVD. Spoiler: they won't.
Not happy with the result? Check out the other Falling Star nominees. For everyone else, don't worry: there's always the Orange Wednesdays Rising Star Award...
With the BAFTAs on tonight, it's the perfect time for a round-up of the key awards contenders.
But I'm a lazy person and couldn't be bothered after waffling on about them for 41 minutes last weekend, so I got my mum to give me her opinions on all the major nominees. She even scored them out of 5 using Werther's Originals. Suck on that, dad. (Disgusting mental image alert.)
What we said
"We've seen this all before, but never so articulate. Magnificent."
What my mum said
"I loved the hats and the bow ties and the pretty buildings. It was almost as good as Lark Rise to Candleford! Colin Firth's my favourite. He can suck my Werther's Originals any time. Along with Hugh Grant and Dustin Hoffman."
What we said
"All the depth and scope of Solaris, slotted neatly into some of the best action sequences since the original Matrix."
What my mum said
"If it was all a dream, then all that running around for two hours was completely pointless! And that bit where he tied them up in the lift? Why couldn't he just leave them in the hotel bedroom?"
(He needed gravity, mum.)
"I don't know what that is."
What we said
"A mad, brilliant melodrama. The film that Shutter Island wanted to be."
What my mum said
"Lesbian sex shouldn't go on for that long - speaking as a mother."
What we said
"Young people screwing each other over to achieve their dreams? Hell yes."
What my mum said
"I saw someone use Facebook once... I don't who this Mark Zuckerbird guy is, but he's not as good as Colin Firth. And he doesn't iron his clothes. No Werther's Originals for him."
What we said
"You've not seen hats until you've seen Hailee Steinfeld wear a hat. Amazing. Wonderful. Masterpiece. Hats."
What my mum said
"I didn't know they made Westerns any more. Still, that bloke from K-Pax looks nice in an eye patch. He should probably shave, though. Beards make things scratchy."
What we said
"Better than Buried? As a tense location, coffin beats rock, but as an actor, James Franco beats Ryan Reynolds every time."
What my mum said
"Another one that was probably all imagined in someone's head. Aron Ralston? That name's almost as made-up as Mark Tuckernerd!"
So there you have it folks. The King's Speech will win everything at the BAFTAs thanks to its incredible haul of 5 Werther's Originals from my mum. Case closed.
Think you can predict who will win the Oscars? Well token bloke off the internet Chris Blohm says YOU KNOW NOTHING. Prove him (and me) wrong with literally the 42nd most exciting thing you could do this January: The Oscar Nomnonom Challenge!
Write down your predictions for all categories. Twitpic them (use #oscarnomnomnom) or email them to [email protected] The person who gets the most right will win cupcakes.
(I am obliged to admit that I stole this cupcake from someone called "freakgirl")
We have entries from 6 people. They are:
- Andrew Jones (recently escaped from Barking to compete for cupcakes)
- Chris Blohm (never goes full robo-vag)
- Robbie Collin (him off News of the World)
- Selina Pearson (resident science junkie)
- Matt Reynolds (Digital Spy's gaming genius and part-time Ron Weasley lookalike)
- Me (who once got told he looks like George Harrison by a drunk Birmingham resident)
Who will win the coveted Oscarnomnomnom cupcakes?
This bake off is about to take off. Boom.
Well, it's pretty much what everyone expected. 14 nominations for The King's Speech - including Best Actor and Best Film - but Black Swan is next with a total of 12 nominations, which is fantastic to see. Inception is up for 9 overall, including Best Director (but not Best Film), so it's largely panned out as predicted.
The few surprises are dotted all over the categories: no Best Score nod for Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross with The Social Network and no Melissa Leo in the Supporting Actress race (she's replaced by the more British choice of Lesley Manville). It's sad that Inception isn't up for Best Film, but True Grit is a deserving candidate - the big awards are all correctly chosen.
The weirdest omission? The complete lack of Never Let Me Go in any single category. I thought Carey Mulligan and the screenplay would at least get a mention. I've no idea what happened there - unless someone insulted Colin Firth's mum. There's a similar absence of Blue Valentine and Winter's Bone, which is sad because you'd perhaps expect the BAFTAs to include some quieter indie releases.
There are two very happy surprises, though, both in the acting categories. Firstly, Best Actress includes the usuals (Bening, Moore, Portman) but features not just Hailee Steinfeld but Noomi Rapace. Yes, Lisbeth Salander has graduated from potential Rising Star to full-on Swedish-bum-rape contender for a big one. On the other side of the draw, Pete Postlethwaite has got a posthumous nod for his role in The Town - a touching tribute to the late actor, who passed away during the week of nominations.
Otherwise, it's all about The King's Speech. It's up for Best Film, Best Director, Best British Film (it better not beat Four Lions there), Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Score... It's a wonder it isn't competing with Toy Story 3 for Best Animated Film as well. Taking up almost every single category, Tom Hooper's period drama is the film to beat. A real shocker, that.
Perhaps, for once, the interesting battle will be in the costume and make-up category, where Colin Firth's royal outfits are up against Made in Dagenham and Black Swan.
The BAFTAs are awarded on Sunday 13th February and will be presented by Jonathan Ross. Read on for the full list of nominees.
Well, we all wanted The Tourist to win, but the Hollywood Foreign Press Association stuck to the predictable choices for most of the Golden Globes last night: The Social Network won the big ones, Christian Bale and Natalie Portman picked up something each and, of course, Colin Firth got his gong for Best Actor.
Putting The King's Speech on solid ground for an Oscar win, The Firthmeister accepted the award with all the British charm he could muster - which is a lot. Less charming for some was host Ricky Gervais, who started off risky and ended up a tamed beast who stuck to reading off cards.
His opening monologue accused The Tourist of bribing people, and also covered Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson. Gasps and frowns went round the room, and Gervais promptly disappeared for an hour before reappearing with a more serious face. Still, he did better than Andrew Garfield, who stuttered his way through trying to say the word "inspiring" and failing miserably. But hey, he looked good while doing it, so it's fine.
The very minor surprises of the night came from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross beating safe bet Alexandre Desplat to Best Score for The Social Network. Yes, that's right: Nine Inch Nails have now won a Golden Globe. Paul Giamatti also unexpectedly won Best Comedy Actor for Barney's Version, an award I thought would go to double-nominee Johnny Depp. The only other non-shock? In a Better World winning Best Foreign Language Film, proving that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association don't always just vote for Iñárritu by default.
But the best moment of the evening? The bit when Robert De Niro made a joke about Little Fockers. And 3D. And private schools. And immigration. It was a long acceptance speech for his Cecil B. DeMille Award, but The De Niro Stand-Up Hour won the Meet the Parents and Machete star back a lot of his credibility.
That was only rivalled by Lee Unkrich bashing down Justin Bieber, who presented him with the Best Animated Film award: "Were you even born when the original Toy Story was released?" Unkrich quipped. Sadly, he was.
Read on for the complete list of winners. And to see Ricky Gervais' opening monologue.
So yeah, the Golden Globes are on tonight and, aside from the usual ranting about the stupidity of it all, I should probably offer a few words predicting what the HFPA will pick out as their winners from the past year, just in case you can't work out the likely candidates for yourself (*cough* THE SOCIAL NETWORK *cough*).
So here are the nominees that I think will walk away with the Globes come one o'clock in the morning:
Best Picture - Musical or Comedy
Best Actor - Musical or Comedy
Best Actress - Musical or Comedy
Ok, that's a cheap joke to make. But what do you expect when they treat rubbish like this seriously?
It's the Golden Globes nominations tomorrow lunchtime, but the build up to the Oscars has already begun with Los Angeles, New York and Boston Critics all dishing out their awards over the weekend. Nobody wants to read three full-scale lists of film titles, but here's the main thing to take away from it all: The Social Network has seriously kicked butt.
LA crowned it Best Picture, with Fincher also getting Best Director (although he has to share it with Olivier Assayas for Carlos). Aaron Sorkin also scooped Best Screenplay and Trent Raznor shared Best Score with The Ghost Writer. The same happened in Boston (minus The Ghost Writer and Carlos), with the bonus of Best Actor for Jesse Eisenberg. New York followed suit, but honoured the acting of James Franco in 127 Hours instead.
So what can you surmise? Well, firstly, Natalie Portman is a strong Best Actress candidate for Black Swan - she got two of three critics' awards. So strong, in fact, that Jennifer Lawrence in Winter's Bone didn't even get a look in (she got pipped by Mother's Kim Hye-Ja to Los Angeles' prize). Secondly, Colin Firth's return to the Best Actor field may be hard-fought if James Franco and Jesse Eisenberg impress the Academy this much. Thirdly, Black Swan will be getting every editing/cinematography gong going.
And fourthly, Fincher's Facebook film will win EVERYTHING ELSE.
While Christian Bale bashes away at Best Supporting Actor in the background, the eyes of Hollywood turn to their Foreign Press Association, who announce their Golden Globe nominations in a matter of hours. Judging by the American Film Institute's Top Ten of the year, The Social Network will be right up there with the best of them. The question is: will the best include Inception? Or will David Fincher face down Christopher Nolan with his more conventional Faustian drama?
The Social Network is more awards-friendly in that its not a blockbuster. But Inception is as intelligent and absorbing as Aaron Sorkin's account of real events. Maybe if Nolan had a CGI clone of Leonardo DiCaprio, the matter would already be resolved. For now, I'm torn between my admiration for my academically adept younger child, and my love for my first-born who likes blowing things up with his mind.