Last week the nominations were finally announced for the most notable event of award’s season, the Academy Awards. The selections have dominated news stories this week, causing some controversy in their wake. Want to find out more about what’s been going on in the world of cinema? Join us as we round up the top movie news from the past seven days.
Oscar nominations: Birdman and The Grand Budapest Hotel lead the way and Brits Eddie Redmayne and Benedict Cumberbatch battle for Best Actor
On 15 January the nominees for the 87th Academy Awards were announced, with Alejandro González Iñárritu’s dark comedy Birdman and Wes Anderson’s latest The Grand Budapest Hotel leading the way with nine nominations each.
Alan Turing biopic The Imitation Game trails closely behind with eight nominations, including Best Picture and a Best Actor nomination for Benedict Cumberbatch. Cumberbatch is one of several British actors nominated this year: he is due to go head to head against his longtime friend Eddie Redmayne, nominated for his critically lauded performance as Steven Hawking in The Theory of Everything. Meanwhile Cumberbatch’s co-star Keira Knightley is nominated in the Best Supporting Actress category and her fellow British actresses Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl) and Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) have received recognition in the Best Actress category.
Notably British actor David Oyelowo missed out on a nomination for his celebrated role as Martin Luther King in the critically acclaimed historical drama Selma. Oyelowo’s snub and the all-white Best Actor and Actresses nominee list has lead to some critique of the lack of diversity in this year’s nominations. Whilst some responded to the critique by pointing out 12 Years A Slave dominated last year’s awards, others, including Star Wars director George Lucas, argued the Academy suffered from a fundamental lack of diversity that should be addressed.
Cheryl Boone Isaacs, president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts, responded to the criticism by saying she was proud of the chosen nominees. Boone Isaacs, the first African-American President of the organsiation, argued the Academy was “making strides” towards diversity and would continue to endeavour do so.
Jupiter Ascending: Look Book
In the run-up to the film’s release on February 6, a Jupiter Ascending ‘Look Book’ has been launched. The digital book contains production design and concept art, as well as behind-the-scenes images from the making of the film. It gives an insightful glimpse into Andy and Lana Wachowski’s vision and is perfect for movie fans looking to get a better look at the costumes, weapons, locations and creatures pre-release. You can browse through the Look Book here and see some images from the book below:
Casting News: Michael Keaton joins Tom Hiddleston in Kong: Skull Island
Michael Keaton has been universally praised for his much-hyped performance in the Oscar-nominated Birdman and his fans will be excited to hear that the actor is due to co-star alongside Thor star Tom Hiddleston in Kong: Skull Island.
This highly anticipated addition to the King Kong movie franchise is set to be an origins story based around a mysterious island, believed to be the home of the titular ape. The film also stars Keaton’s fellow Oscar nominee, Whiplash actor J.K. Simmons, who last week told MTV News that the film is to be set in 1970s Detroit. Simmons praised the film’s director for being “so passionate and so smart”, noting “there’s such an interesting new take on it.” The film’s new vision and stellar cast makes it worth looking out for when it hits theatres in 2017.