Agnes Varda’s Oscar picnic

Featured · Film
Flowers and an Oscar? What more could a woman want? These mementos so richly deserved by the French woman of cinema, Agnes Varda. On Nov. 11, at the 9th annual Governors Awards ceremony of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), Varda received an honorary Oscar. Varda’s artful, thought-provoking, highly personal auteur films ...

Female artists of film animation honored @ AMPAS

Visual arts
From the earliest pioneers of hand-rendered animated films, to the advent of digital technology, women have been at the forefront of the animation medium. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will celebrate the women who have been at the forefront of film animation Mindy Johnson, author of Ink & Paint: The Women of ...

On arts·meme’s front page: ‘The Front Page’

Film · Language & ideas
So very excited to see the restored (by the Academy Film Archive ·and the Film Foundation) first film version of Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur’s 1928 Broadway comedy, “The Front Page,” which kicks off To Save and Project at the Museum of Modern Art. According to MoMA adjunct curator Dave Kehr (he and curator Josh ...

Gypsy dancer shop-talk at the Academy

Dance · Film
It was an occasion for dance-chatter the other evening at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. A highly vaunted circle, including veteran gypsy dancers, a choreographer for the camera, and even an Oscar-winning actor, gathered at AMPAS prior to a screening of “West Side Story” Monday July 18, 2016. In the picture, Maria ...

‘West Side Story’ feted, dissected, appreciated at the Academy

Dance · Film
Fascinating film lore revealed by producer Walter Mirisch, at Monday’s panel discussion prior to a special screening of West Side Story (1961) at the Academy. Apparently Jerome Robbins, WSS’s creator/co-director, was extremely resistant to the location shooting, in New York City, of the “Prologue” — the movie’s brilliant opening minutes when an overhead shot drills into ...

Want to be a movie star? Line up here.

Film
A super interesting evening upcoming at the Academy that examines a critical backstage process in film making — casting. Acclaimed casting directors Lynn Stalmaster, Juliet Taylor and Mike Fenton will sit down with the governors of the Academy’s Casting Directors Branch to discuss the evolution of their profession and the essential role the casting director ...

Queen Liz gorgeously garbed in ‘Hollywood Costume’

Fashion · Film · Visual arts
The pinnacle (for this viewer), tour-de-force display of the Motion Picture Academy’s “Hollywood Costume,” now on view at LACMA’s May Company building, comes about mid-way through the multi-room exhibition and stretches across a long platform. “A Royal Romance” features a sumptuous swathe of historic Hollywood costumes that have dressed movie characters of British nobility — ...

Brilliant at ‘transforming people’ says Tippi Hedren of Edith Head

Fashion · Film
One of the marvelous interactive exhibits at the just-opened “Hollywood Costume” exhibition, a co-presentation by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and the Victoria & Albert Museum at LACMA’s May Company building, is a virtual conversation between three movie collaborators. Two, alas, are deceased, but one is still vibrantly alive. Director Alfred Hitchcock ...

Walk this way … to “Young Frankenstein”‘s 40th birthday party

Film
As the young Doctor (“Frankensteen“) has now advanced to prime middle age, his story, told with pinpoint historic accuracy in the great Mel Brooks movie spoof, “Young Frankenstein” (1974), will spool at the Academy in celebration of his fortieth birthday this year. Brooks, twice that age, will submit to interview by Leonard Maltin at the ...

Visit Spain, Czech Republic, both on Wilshire Boulevard

Film
Two European films, both from a similar era, will enjoy screenings soon, along the Wilshire corridor: “Goya” at the Goethe Institut and “Closely Watched Trains” at the Academy. Having attained boundless wealth and iconic status as a painter in the court of King Carlos IV, Goya falls head over heels for a beautiful princess while ...