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Amid an intense wave of backlash, the Academy has decided to air all Oscar categories live

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In the wake of an intense wave of backlash, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Friday that they will be reversing their controversial decision to present four technical categories their awards during commercial breaks at the 91st Oscars ceremony next Sunday.

“The Academy has heard the feedback from its membership regarding the Oscar presentation of four awards – Cinematography, Film Editing, Live Action Short, and Makeup and Hairstyling,” the AMPAS board of governors said in a statement. “All Academy Awards will be presented without edits, in our traditional format.”

Sources familiar with the matter tell Silver Screen Beat that the Academy’s change of heart came after AMPAS president John Bailey and CEO Dawn Hudson met with members of the group’s cinematography branch Thursday evening to discuss the decision, which did not go over well with many Hollywood filmmakers and craftspeople.

“Relegating these essential cinematic crafts to lesser status in this 91st Academy Awards ceremony is nothing less than an insult to those of us who have devoted our lives and passions to our chosen profession,” read an open letter to the Academy signed by dozens of industry figures, including directors Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee and cinematographers Roger Deakins and Rachel Morrison.

The letter ends with a quote from Academy member Seth Rogen, who tweeted earlier this week, “What better way to celebrate achievements in film than to NOT publicly honour the people whose job it is to film things.”

The 91st Oscars will air live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 24 on ABC.

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John David Washington lands lead role in Christopher Nolan’s secretive next film

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Let the hype begin: Variety is reporting that Oscar-nominated BlacKkKlansman star John David Washington has been tapped to star in Christopher Nolan’s secretive new film, with production on the project expected to get underway in the coming months.

According to the story, “Nolan recently finished the script for the movie and Warner Bros. quickly dated it for July 17, 2020,” but, as you can imagine, with this being a Nolan film and all, plot details are being kept very tightly under wraps at the moment.

What we do know is that the film is being described “as a massive, innovative action blockbuster,” which puts to rest those rumors we heard in recent weeks about it being some romantic thriller of sorts. Oh, and did we mention this thing is going to be shown in IMAX? Because this thing is going to be shown in IMAX.

As for Washington’s role, well, we don’t really know much about that either, but Variety does mention that “the gig has become one of the more highly coveted in town,” which makes me so very happy for John David Washington. The dude absolutely killed it in BlacKkKlansman and deserves this opportunity 100%.

That’s all we have for you right now regarding Nolan’s latest, but be sure to stay tuned for any future developments that might come across our desk. You definitely don’t want to be in the dark when it comes to this one.

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Disney’s $71.3 billion acquisition of Fox will become effective at midnight tonight

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Disney acquiring 21st Century Fox
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It’s officially official: The Walt Disney Company announced today that their massive $71.3 billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox will become effective at 12:02 a.m. Eastern Time tomorrow, March 20, 2019.

Disney’s acquisition of the 20th Century Fox movie and television studios has all of the comic book fanboys giddy about the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool finally being under Marvel control because now they’ll get all of those crossovers they’ve been waiting so desperately for in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

What the fanboys fail to see, however, is that this acquisition brings us one step closer to a media monopoly and will come at the expense of thousands and thousands of jobs being lost. Actually, more than 4,000 to be exact, according to THR.

“It’s harder to predict potential layoffs within the Fox film studio itself, which has about 3,200 employees, but cuts are expected to be especially deep, particularly in overlapping divisions such as marketing, distribution and home entertainment,” the report says.

Media analyst Rich Greenfield thinks there will be much more than just 4,000 layoffs. “There will be bloodshed over time,” he said, estimating that there will be roughly 5,000 to 10,000 jobs lost over the course of the next few years.

Maybe I’m crazy, but I fail to see how one could possibly be excited about the X-Men or Deadpool or whoever the fuck crossing over to the MCU when you really put the human cost of this acquisition into perspective. It’s simply not worth it.

But, hey, hooray for capitalism and Marvel movies, I guess?

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The first full-length trailer for ‘Toy Story 4’ reveals the adventures of Woody and Forky

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Toy Story 4
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If you had told me a couple years ago that a fourth Toy Story movie following the adventures of a Woody stuck in an existential crisis and a depressed, suicidal spork was coming out, I probably would’ve laughed in your face. Wait, no. I definitely would’ve laughed in your face!

However, as evidenced by the first full-length trailer for Toy Story 4, that’s exactly the case here, and I can’t believe just how fucking weird and emotional this thing looks. Like, Toy Story 3 was already weird and emotional enough with the whole “toys making peace with death” trope. I don’t know if I’ll be able to handle whatever the hell Pixar has in store with this sequel.

Toy Story 4 seems to pick up shortly after the events of the previous film follows the gang (including Forky, voiced by Tony Hale) as they embark on a road trip adventure with Bonnie and her family. However, things take a turn for the worst when Woody and Forky end up on an unexpected detour, leading them down a shocking path of surprises.

Look, I’m not gonna lie and say I’m not excited for Toy Story 4, because I am, but I also can’t help but continue to question the necessity for this sequel, especially when it seems to be recycling the same narrative arcs from both the second and third films. Plus, we can all pretty much agree that Toy Story 3 felt like the perfect ending to this trilogy, right?

I guess we’ll find out if Toy Story 4 can do the rest of the trilogy justice when it opens in theaters on June 21.

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