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2018 Gotham Awards: ‘The Rider’ takes the top prize as A24 sweeps the annual indie awards show

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The Rider
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The Independent Filmmaker Project announced the winners for the 28th Annual IFP Gotham Awards in New York City on Monday night, with Chloe Zhao’s rodeo drama The Rider beating out major awards contenders like The Favourite and If Beale Street Could Talk for the Best Feature prize.

It was also a big night for NY-based distributor A24, which managed to pick up five awards over the course of the night, including Best Actor for Ethan Hawke for his performance in First Reformed and Best Actress for Toni Collette her performance in Hereditary.

“We live in a moment, a time period, with a void of political and spiritual leadership,” Hawke said as he accepted his award. “In that kind of time period, a heavy burden falls to the artist because we, the artistic community, people in this room and elsewhere, can transcend minds and open hearts that are normally closed.”

A24’s coming-of-age dramedy Eighth Grade won big as well, with Bo Burnham and Elsie Fisher picking up the awards for Breakthrough Director and Breakthrough Actor, respectively. The latter category was made up entirely of women and included the likes of Roma‘s Yalizta Aparicio and Beale Street‘s Kiki Layne.

“This is really just another award for Elsie Fisher,” Burnham said as he picked up the Breakthrough Director award. Other nominees in that category included Ari Aster for Hereditary and Boots Riley for Sorry to Bother You.

The nominating committee for the Gotham Awards, which is made up of a group of film critics, journalists, festival programmers, and film curators, voted to award a Special Jury Award to Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz for their ensemble performance in The Favourite.

“Independent films are often really, really hard to get made,” Weisz said as she accepted the honor, which was presented by Michael Sheen. “The films are bold and dangerous and they’re also really fragile. That’s why I’m proud to get this award from IFP because for 40 years they’ve been helping independent filmmakers.”

You can check out the complete list of winners from the 2018 Gotham Awards below.

Best Feature
The Favourite, Yorgos Lanthimos, director (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
First Reformed, Paul Schrader, director (A24)
If Beale Street Could Talk, Barry Jenkins, director (Annapurna Pictures)
Madeline’s Madeline, Josephine Decker, director (Oscilloscope Laboratories)
WINNER: The Rider, Chloé Zhao, director (Sony Pictures Classics)

Best Documentary
Bisbee ‘17, Robert Greene, director (4th Row Films)
WINNER: Hale County This Morning, This Evening, RaMell Ross, director (The Cinema Guild)
Minding the Gap, Bing Liu, director (Hulu & Magnolia Pictures)
Shirkers, Sandi Tan, director (Netflix)
Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Morgan Neville, director (Focus Features)

Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director Award
Ari Aster for Hereditary (A24)
WINNER: Bo Burnham for Eighth Grade (A24)
Jennifer Fox for The Tale (HBO)
Crystal Moselle for Skate Kitchen (Magnolia Pictures)
Boots Riley for Sorry to Bother You (Annapurna Pictures)

Best Screenplay
The Favourite, Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
WINNER: First Reformed, Paul Schrader (A24)
Private Life, Tamara Jenkins (Netflix)
Support the Girls, Andrew Bujalski (Magnolia Pictures)
Thoroughbreds, Cory Finley (Focus Features)

Best Actor
Adam Driver in BlacKkKlansman (Focus Features)
Ben Foster in Leave No Trace (Bleecker Street)
Richard E. Grant in Can You Ever Forgive Me? (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
WINNER: Ethan Hawke in First Reformed (A24)
Lakeith Stanfield in Sorry to Bother You (Annapurna Pictures)

Best Actress*
Glenn Close in The Wirfe (Sony Pictures Classics)
WINNER: Toni Collette in Hereditary (A24)
Kathryn Hahn in Private Life (Netflix)
Regina Hall in Support the Girls (Magnolia Pictures)
Michelle Pfeiffer in Where Is Kyra? (Paladin and Great Point Media)

*The 2018 Best Actress nominating committee also voted to award a special Gotham Jury Award to Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz for their ensemble performance in The Favourite. (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Breakthrough Actor
Yalitza Aparicio in Roma (Netflix)
WINNER: Elsie Fisher in Eighth Grade (A24)
Helena Howard in Madeline’s Madeline (Oscilloscope Laboratories)
KiKi Layne in If Beale Street Could Talk (Annapurna Pictures)
Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie in Leave No Trace (Bleecker Street)

Breakthrough Series – Long Form
Alias Grace, Sarah Polley, Mary Harron, Noreen Halpern, executive producers (Netflix)
Big Mouth, Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Jennifer Flackett, Mark Levin, creators; Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin & Jennifer Flackett, executive producers (Netflix)
The End of the F***ing World, Andy Baker, Murray Ferguson, Petra Fried, Ed MacDonald, Dominic Buchanan, Jonathan Entwistle, executive producers (Netflix)
WINNER: Killing Eve, Sally Woodward Gentle, Lee Morris, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, executive producers (BBC America)
Pose, Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Steven Canals, creators; Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Nina Jacobson, Brad Simpson, Alexis Martin Woodall, Sherry Marsh, executive producers (FX Networks)
Sharp Objects, Marti Noxon, creator; Marti Noxon, Jason Blum, Gillian Flynn, Amy Adams, Jean-Marc Vallée, Nathan Ross, Gregg Fienberg, Charles Layton, Marci Wiseman, Jessica Rhoades, executive producers (HBO)

Breakthrough Series – Short Form
WINNER: 195 Lewis, Chanelle Aponte Pearson and Rae Leone Allen, creators
Cleaner Daze, Tess Sweet and Daniel Gambelin, creators
Distance, Alex Dobrenko, creator
The F Word, Nicole Opper, creator
She’s the Ticket, Nadia Hallgren, creator

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‘Transparent’ creator Jill Soloway will replace Bryan Singer as writer-director on ‘Red Sonja’

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Jill Soloway Red Sonja
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Bryan Singer, in addition to being a pretty bad director, is also a pretty shitty and terrible person, as you probably already know. Earlier this year, The Atlantic published an exposé detailing new sexual misconduct claims against the Bohemian Rhapsody helmer made by several men who claim he sexually assaulted them when they were underage—the youngest being just 13-years-old.

That being said, it was pretty shocking when Millennium Films CEO Avi Lerner referred to the exposé as “agenda driven fake news” and said that he would not be removing Singer from his post as writer-director on the studio’s long-in-the-works Red Sonja, a female-centered superhero film that would reportedly earn Singer a whopping $10 million paycheck.

Fast forward a few months later, and it appears Lerner had a change of heart after all, as Deadline is reporting that Millennium has finally removed Singer from the project and replaced him with Transparent creator Jill Soloway, who is now set to write and direct the project that has been stuck in development hell for more than a decade now at this point.

“I can’t wait to bring Red Sonja’s epic world to life,” Soloway said in a statement to Deadline. “Exploring this powerful mythology and evolving what it means to be a heroine is an artistic dream come true.”

However, as exciting as it is to finally see Red Sonja get back off the ground and into development with someone that isn’t a dude at the helm, don’t expect to see the movie hit theaters anytime soon, as the original report notes that it still “has to be scripted, cast and prepped” and “it is likely Soloway will direct something before it.”

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‘Halloween 2’ will begin shooting this fall with Jamie Lee Curtis and David Gordon Green returning

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Halloween 2
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Earlier this month, we brought you a report about how Jamie Lee Curtis and Jason Blum had met up to probably discuss the development of another Halloween movie and it sounds like our speculation was right on point: The Shape isn’t dead after all.

According to Collider, Halloween 2 is indeed happening and is set to begin production this fall. Curtis will, of course, be reprising her iconic role as Laurie Strode, while Judy Greer and Andi Matichak will also be back to play her daughter and granddaughter, respectively.

David Gordon Green, who directed and co-wrote last year’s Halloween along with Danny McBride and Jeff Fradley, wrote the script for the sequel and is being eyed for a return to the director’s chair as well. It’s unclear as to what happened to the screenplay Scott Teems was reportedly working on earlier this year.

Last year’s Halloween was initially intended to be a one-off (the first synopsis for the film described it as Laurie Strode’s “final confrontation” with Michael Myers), but with it’s $255 million worldwide box office haul and open-ended conclusion, a sequel seemed all but likely to happen.

Halloween 2 is expected to hit theaters on October 16, 2020. We’ll bring you the official announcement from Blumhouse as soon as it comes across our desk.

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Paul Thomas Anderson and Thom Yorke’s short film ‘Anima’ is coming to Netflix next week

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Paul Thomas Anderson Anima
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“In a short musical film directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, Thom Yorke of Radiohead scores and stars in a mind-bending visual piece. Best played loud.”

That’s the incredibly intriguing official logline for Anima, the latest and rather unexpected collaboration between director Paul Thomas Anderson and Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke, which is set to be released along with Yorke’s upcoming album of the same name later this month.

Despite the teaser trailer released by Netflix today, we still don’t know a whole lot about Anima other than the fact that it’s being described as a “one-reeler,” an outdated industry term that refers to “a motion picture, especially a cartoon or comedy, of 10-12 minutes duration and contained on one reel of film; popular especially in the era of silent films.”

This whole thing is beyond exciting (to say the least), especially given the surprise nature of it all, and although it hasn’t even been two years since we got the lush masterpiece that is Phantom Thread, it certainly feels like we’re long overdue for some new PTA and Anima seems like it’ll be just what we need to hold us over until his next feature.

Anima will hit select IMAX theaters (!) and Netflix on June 26 and 27, respectively.

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