Oscars Watch
February 29, 2016

Predicting the Oscars is a serious business — some experts make six-figures blogging about the possible winners. It is perhaps no surprise then that film writers have already turned their attention to the competitors of next year's Academy Awards, despite the fact that most of the movies haven't even been seen yet, or are maybe not even finished.

This is what to keep your eyes on, according to The Hollywood Reporter:

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
Ang Lee's follow up to 2012's Life of Pi, for which he won best director.

Birth of a Nation
The critical darling of this year's Sundance Film Festival, about a slave uprising.

The Girl on the Train
Tate Taylor's follow-up to 2012 Oscar nominee The Help, based on the wildly popular book by the same name and starring Emily Blunt.

From the producers of The King's Speech, a story about an Indian kid who is searching for his parents after being adopted by a family in Australia. Stars Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara.

Manchester by the Sea
Could Amazon Studios have an Oscar-nominated picture next year? If so, it would likely be Manchester by the Sea, which got rave reviews at Sundance and stars Casey Affleck.

Read the rest of the predictions in The Hollywood Reporter. Jeva Lange

January 24, 2015

American Sniper is setting "records on top of records," according to Warner Bros. domestic distribution president Dan Fellman.

His assessment is not pure hyperbole, CNNMoney notes; the film, which grossed $105 million on its opening weekend, has set a record for the "widest release ever for an R-rated movie." American Sniper expanded by 150 screens this weekend — it is now showing on 3,705 screens in the U.S., total.

The movie has also broken records for "best opening for a movie based on a book," "largest MLK opening weekend ever," and "largest drama opening weekend ever," according to Fellman. Nominated for a best picture Academy Award, the film stars Bradley Cooper — who is up for a best actor Academy Award for the role — as Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle. Sarah Eberspacher

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