Monday, July 14, 2014

Weinstein's at Telluride/Wild Makes an Appearance/Pixar's Short Lava

Good Monday everyone.  I'm back in the Oklahoma Panhandle after 2 1/2 weeks on the road and some fantastic lifetime memories...

Today, I conclude my look at U.S. distributors that have films that could play Telluride with one of the biggest players in that field....The Weinstein Company:


Harvey Weinstein and his brother Bob have had a fairly common presence at the Telluride Film Festival over the years.  Their current incarnation is as The Weinstein Company.  Previously they were Miramax.

Tracking both companies as distributors at Telluride for the past decade shows us that they've been a part of The SHOW for a good long while.  Here's their Telluride slate as Miramax or The Weinstein Company since 2006:

2006: Venus
2007: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, My Enemy's Enemy, I'm Not There
2008: Happy-Go-Lucky
2009: The Road
2010: The King's Speech
2011: The Artist, Butter
2012: The Sapphires  (also was represented during the Marion Cotillard tribute by James Gray and 5 min. of The Immigrant)
2013: The Unknown Known, Salinger, Tracks

So over 8 years...13 films.  1.6 per year and TWC has been repped at TFF consistently each year since 2006.  So what's in TWC's stable this year that has a chance to play in T-ride?

"St. Vincent"
"The Imitation Game"
"Suite Francaise"
"Big Eyes"

And from TWC's Radius arm, the best chance is Cannes film "It Follows".

What seems likely here?  Because you have to believe that TWC will want to play.  Maybe more than any other distributor, the Toronto/Telluride show down may have its greatest effect here.  I believe that their decision will be propelled by their analysis about which fest and what platforming of films in which places will do them the most good.

It seemed pretty clear last year that TWC placed more faith in Toronto when they made the last minute switch from "Philomena" as a Monday TBA to "Salinger".  But Harvey and company also can't ignore that their greatest successes in recent years: "The Artist" and "The King's Speech" both played Telluride on their way to Oscar glory.  Another factor is that I don't really see a slam dunk Best Picture player here.  All of them could be but none of them are perceived as having an inside track to a nomination for BP at this point (as, for example. "Unbroken" or "Foxcatcher" seem to have at this point).

Bottom line is that I expect a two or three of these films to make the Telluride lineup but discerning, at least at this point, which are the most likely is really difficult.

I'm personally campaigning to see Morten Tyldum's "The Imitation Game" with Benedict Cumberbatch telling the true story of British genius and hero Alan Turing but it may actually be the least likely choice insofar as Telluride is concerned.  Almost everyone that guesses at this sort of stuff thinks it's headed to Toronto.  Tim Buton's "Big Eyes" also seems fairly bet is that it goes to New York.  That leaves "Suite Francaise", "MacBeth" and "St. Vincent" for Telluride.  I'd be pretty happy with any or all of them.  At this point, Murray's "St. Vincent" might actually be the most likely.


Jean Marc Vallee's follow up to "Dallas Buyers Club" is "Wild' starring Oscar winner Reese Witherspoon.
Over the last few days we have seen a new poster appear as well as a trailer for the film.  Here's the trailer:

"Wild" Trailer via YouTube

 and the poster:

Friend of MTFB Kris Tapley, writing at HitFix, seems to think that "Wild" could be a Telluride choice as you'll see when you read this post from the weekend:

Here is a another post about the trailer:


Pixar's new animated short film is entitled "Lava" and will precede their feature "Inside Out" in the summer of 2015.  I wouldn't be all that surprised to see it pop up somewhere in Telluride's program over Labor Day.  Read about it here:

More to come on Tuesday...including our annual look at "The Usual Suspects"...not the film...

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