Toronto International Film Festival Opens with Demolition

jakegyllenhaal_demolitionJake Gyllenhaal as he appears in Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition (via The New York Times)

Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition will open the 40th annual Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF); this screening will also serve as its world premiere. Many of us might scramble to update our current Oscar picks with that little update, but keep in mind, Fox Searchlight just dated the dramedy, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Naomi Watts, and Chris Cooper, for April 2016. Of course, things may change…

But we should update our picks with world premieres like (more…)


Oscar Predictions 2015: Chi-Raq and Trainwreck Enter the Fray

Hey all! Back for another predictions update!

In case you missed them, here are some news bits that may prove relevant during the awards season:

Photo (via TIME) by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images

Amazon Studios to give Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq Oscar-qualifying run in December. The film, based on the classical Greek comedy Lysistrata, will have an official opening after the new year. The theatrical release will precede its streaming debut, in order to avoid a Beasts of No Nation-esque conflict. The film focuses on a woman (played by Teyonah Parris) who goes on a sex strike to protest black-on-black gun violence in Chicago.

The Amy Schumer-led, Judd Apatow-helmed Trainwreck soars. The acclaimed comedy surpassed its mid-teens expectations with $30.2 million – the second-best for an Apatow film, just behind Knocked Up (2007)’s $30.9 million debut. Universal Pictures may push Schumer’s original screenplay for awards consideration; the actress-writer may also find herself in the best-actress conversation – at least at the Golden Globes, right?

Bill Condon’s Mr. Holmes wins the specialty box office. The film, led by Ian McKellen as an aging Sherlock Holmes battling senility and grappling with an unsolved case, made $2.49 million from just 363 locations. If the drama continues to succeed in the coming weeks, we may have another legitimate contender for the best actor Oscar.

Fox Searchlight sets Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition for April 6, 2016. With Jake Gyllenhaal as the lead and Naomi Watts and Chris Cooper in supporting roles, this looked like another awards magnet for Vallée, but maybe this will be a commercial hit next year. The distributor still has contenders in Paolo Sorrentino’s Youth, John Crowley’s Brooklyn, Luca Guadagnino’s A Bigger Splash, and Noah Baumbach’s Mistress America.

Sony Pictures Classics pulls The Lady in the Van from its 2015 slate. Once set for limited release on December 11, the drama looked like an Oscar vehicle for Maggie Smith, who reprises her Olivier Award-nominated role as a woman who lived in a man’s driveway for 15 years. No word on a new release date, but I imagine it will make its mark early next year. SPC probably pushed Lady back to make room for other best-actress contenders.

Now, this week’s predictions:


Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition to Arrive in 2016

jakegyllenhaal_demolition-setA photo of Jake Gyllenhaal on the set of Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition (via Lainey Gossip)

Fox Searchlight has set Jean-Marc Vallée’s Demolition for theatrical release on April 6, 2016. Jake Gyllenhaal leads the Bryan Sipe-scripted dramedy as an investment banker who disconnects from life following his wife’s tragic death; Naomi Watts and Chris Cooper also star in the film.