Category Archives: Disney Movies

Academy Award Nominations for Frozen, Saving Mr. Banks, Get A Horse, The Wind Rises, & more

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Better than the Razzies, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced their nominations for the 86th Annual Academy Awards, coming up on Sunday, March 2nd. As Disney is now focussing more on mega-blockbusters and less artsy pics, they are getting fewer nominations than companies that bring in less money, but release more films. This also keeps them out of the biggest categories of acting, directing, writing, and the big one of best picture, and even the lesser ones of cinematography, editing, and design. In addition to Disney’s “own” awards, Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound employees have picked up some nominations for their work. This is harder to list, and ILM & Skywalker don’t get named by the Academy themselves.  They may become footnotes on the list – it will be hard to track them as time goes on (but congratulations is in order, nonetheless).

So, without further ado, here are the categories in which Disney is nominated:

Best animated feature film of the year:
– “The Croods” (20th Century Fox), Chris Sanders, Kirk DeMicco and Kristine Belson
– “Despicable Me 2” (Universal), Chris Renaud, Pierre Coffin and Chris Meledandri
– “Ernest & Celestine” (GKIDS), Benjamin Renner and Didier Brunner
– “Frozen” (Walt Disney), Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee and Peter Del Vecho
 – “The Wind Rises” (Walt Disney), Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki

Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling
– “Dallas Buyers Club” (Focus Features) Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews
– “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa” (Paramount) Stephen Prouty
“The Lone Ranger” (Walt Disney) Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)
– “The Book Thief” (20th Century Fox) John Williams
– “Gravity” (Warner Bros.) Steven Price
– “Her” (Warner Bros.) William Butler and Owen Pallett
– “Philomena” (The Weinstein Company) Alexandre Desplat
“Saving Mr. Banks” (Walt Disney) Thomas Newman

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)
– “Alone Yet Not Alone” from “Alone Yet Not Alone” (Enthuse Entertainment); Music by Bruce Broughton, Lyric by Dennis Spiegel
– “Happy” from “Despicable Me 2” (Universal); Music and Lyric by Pharrell Williams
“Let It Go” from “Frozen” (Walt Disney); Music and Lyric by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
– “The Moon Song” from “Her” (Warner Bros.); Music by Karen O, Lyric by Karen O and Spike Jonze
– “Ordinary Love” from “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” (The Weinstein Company); Music by Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen, Lyric by Paul Hewson

Best animated short film
– “Feral”, A Daniel Sousa Production, Daniel Sousa and Dan Golden
– “Get a Horse!” (Walt Disney) A Walt Disney Animation Production, Lauren MacMullan and Dorothy McKim 
– “Mr. Hublot”, A Zeilt Production, Laurent Witz and Alexandre Espigares
– “Possessions”, A Sunrise Production, Shuhei Morita
– “Room on the Broom”, A Magic Light Pictures Production. Max Lang and Jan Lachauer

Achievement in visual effects
– “Gravity” (Warner Bros.) Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk and Neil Corbould
– “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” (Warner Bros.) Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton and Eric Reynolds
“Iron Man 3” (Walt Disney) Christopher Townsend, Guy Williams, Erik Nash and Dan Sudick
“The Lone Ranger” (Walt Disney) Tim Alexander, Gary Brozenich, Edson Williams and John Frazier
– “Star Trek Into Darkness” (Paramount) Roger Guyett, Patrick Tubach, Ben Grossmann and Burt Dalton

Before the Oscars, there are first the Razzie Award Nominations

RazzieLogo180The Razzie Awards are a bit of an enigma.  Created by the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation so as to recognize the worst of the products coming from the Hollywood movie making machine, sometimes they hit, and sometimes they miss. Sometimes the films they nominate are bad films, but not often are they the worst. They are often among the worst of the mega-budget films, and the actors and actresses who receive nominations receive often for their entire body of work in a year, not just individual performances, which can make it look like the organization behind the Razzies just likes to pick on some of the same people over and over again. My own personal beef is their “Worst Screen Combo” category.  Often that category has “everyone from ‘Film X'” as a nominee – when really, nominating a character or bit actor with one line in a film should hardly be the subject of a Razzie nomination for “Worst Screen Combo”. Pick on the bad actors, and name names, Razzies. Name names for your nominees. The other concern, is that Razzie noms aren’t voted on by “a jury of your peers”, rather anyone and everyone can be a member, which makes them more like People’s Worst Choice Awards. “Winners” will be announced on “Oscar Eve”, Saturday, March 1st.

Anyways, with that rant behind us, here are Disney‘s 5 nominations for the 34th Annual Razzie Awards, all for The Lone Ranger:

Worst PictureThe Lone Ranger, against After EarthGrown-Ups 2A Madea Christmas, and Movie 43.

Worst Actor: Johnny Depp (The Lone Ranger), against Ashton Kutcher (Jobs), Adam Sandler (Grown-Ups 2), Jaden Smith (After Earth), and Sylvester Stallone (Bullet To The Head, Escape Plan, and Grudge Match)

Worst Director: Gore Verbinski (The Lone Ranger), against Dennis Dugan (Grown-Ups 2), Tyler Perry (A Madea Christmas and Temptation), M. Night Shyamalan (After Earth), and <sigh> “The 13 People Who Directed” (Movie 43). [For the record, the thirteen people are: Peter Farrelly, Steven Brill, Will Graham, Steve Carr, Griffin Dunne, James Duffy, Jonathan van Tulleken, Elizabeth Banks, Patrik Forsberg, Brett Ratner, Rusty Cundieff, James Gunn, and Bob Odenkirk]

Worst Screenplay: Ted Elliott, Justin Haythe & Terry Rossio (Screen Story & Screenplay for The Lone Ranger) against Gary Whitta and M. Night Shyamalan (Screenplay) and Will Smith (Story) of After Earth, Fred Wolfe & Adam Sandler & Tim Herlihy (Grown-Ups 2), Tyler Perry (A Madea Christmas), and <again, sigh> the 19 “Screenwriters” (their quotation marks, not mine) of Movie 43 [who again, deserve the ‘credit’ for their work, if it really is that bad. They are: Rocky Russo, Jeremy Sosenko, Ricky Blitt, Bill O’Malley, Will Graham, Jack Kukoda, Matthew Alec Portenoy, Claes Kjellstrom, Jonas Wittenmark, Tobias Carlson, Will Carlough, Jonathan van Tulleken, Elizabeth Wright Shapiro, Patrik Forsberg, Olle Sarri, Jacob Fleisher, Greg Pritikin, James Gunn, and Bob Odenkirk]

Worst Remake, Rip-Off or SequelThe Lone Ranger against Grown-ups 2Hangover IIIScary Movie 5, and Smurfs 2.


muppetsmostwanted_covers_facebook_groupThe newest Muppet movie, Muppets Most Wanted, opens everywhere March 21, 2014. Today there’s a new trailer/TV spot which continues mocking the use of Twitter quotes in trailers. The most remarkable thing is that the Twitter handles that they quote in the opening seconds of the trailer are actually Twitter accounts. They’ve taken the time to post the Twitter identities of actual Muppet fans.  Quite remarkable.

Roger Corman’s THE FANTASTIC FOUR documentary “DOOMED!”


Today, another blip on the radar of a documentary based on a quasi-Disney project. Roger Corman, the mega-busy producer of perhaps questionable B-quality films (or worse) made a version of Marvel’s The Fantastic Four back in 1994. There were lots of significant factors surrounding it’s production, and it was never released, nor – does it seem – was it ever intended to. Today we bring news of a documentary made about the project, a film called Doomed! (Did I mention that the villain was the infamous Dr. Doom?). Anyways, for more information, you can check out the Doomed FaceBook page!thefantasticfourcormanposter


ThiefAndTheCobblerIn 1995, Disney-owned Miramax Pictures released a little picture called Arabian Knight. I was in attending the University of Saskatchewan at the time, which held a critics’ screening of the film in their on-campus theatre (Place Riel), which has since been converted into a classroom.  I grew up watching many Disney cartoons in this theatre as Saturday afternoon matinees, and many other film classics in my early adult years.  By this point, I was a fan of Disney’s films, and had been aware of their purchase of Miramax a few years earlier.  This made me eager to see this film at possibly it’s only airing in Saskatoon at the time.

arabianknightposterBy now, hopefully you’ve heard about this film and all of the history behind it.  If you haven’t, I point you now to two excellent articles by “Papa Vineyard” (Vincent Zahedi) of Ain’t It Cool News. The first is about how he recently had a chance to see a 1992 version of the film, assembled before Miramax got their hands on it, and the second is an interview with Kevin Schreck, the director of a documentary titled “Persistence of Vision” which is all about the 30-year-plus making of The Thief And The Cobbler, and legendary filmmaker Richard Williams’ vision with regards to his masterpiece project.  I suggest you check out both articles.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Plot and Casting Rumours



The Hollywood Reporter is reporting new rumours that J.J. Abrams, director of the upcoming Episode VII, is looking to focus on the characters of Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa, and Han Solo rather than on their descendants. This would mean that Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford would be reprising their roles; not just as supporting cast as previously thought but as leads in one last hurrah, so that fans can get true closure.

Apparently, George Lucas has given the okay to Abrams, who is writing the script himself with Star Wars veteran Lawrence Kasdan. One of the reasons given is the tight timeline between when the project officially got underway and the current December 18, 2015 release date.