Scarlett Johansson at the Oscars
Looking great in a long purple dress, Scarlett Johansson displays her tight-fitting costume and bare back at the 83rd Academy Awards held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood.
Oscar 2011 co-host and Best Actor nominee James Franco (for Danny Boyle’s 127 Hours) thus introduced Johansson and fellow Oscar presenter Matthew McConaughey: “I am six degrees of Kevin Bacon away from our next two presenters. Figure it out on the Internet.”
Well, if you’re lucky.
Some have remarked that Franco was a more effective Oscar host online, where he tweeted some of the evening’s to-dos, than on the stage of the Kodak Theatre. His fellow equally panned Oscarcast host was actress Anne Hathaway.
Scarlett Johansson movies
Scarlett Johansson has been featured in more than 40 films since her debut at age 10 in Rob Reiner’s North, back in 1994. Johansson, in fact, is one of the relatively few child performers who have gone on to enjoy successful movie careers as adults.
Titles include Robert Redford’s The Horse Whisperer (1998), with Redford and Kristin Scott Thomas; Peter Webber’s Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003), with Colin Firth; Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation (2003), with Bill Murray; and Paul Weitz’s In Good Company (2004), with Dennis Quaid and Topher Grace.
Also: Brian De Palma’s The Black Dahlia (2006), with Josh Hartnett and Aaron Eckhart; Jon Favreau’s blockbuster Iron Man 2 (2010), with Johansson as the Black Widow opposite Robert Downey Jr.’s titular superhero; and Cameron Crowe’s We Bought a Zoo (2011), with Matt Damon.
In addition to three Woody Allen movies: Scoop (2004), with Allen and Hugh Jackman; Match Point (2005), with Jonathan Rhys Meyers; and Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008), with Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz.
Lastly, there’s the upcoming The Avengers (2012), directed by Josh Whedon, and starring Johansson alongside Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Robert Downey Jr., and Tom Hiddleston.
Scarlett Johansson in purple dress photo: Darren Decker | © A.M.P.A.S.
‘Inside Job’ Academy Award winners Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
Pictured above are Inside Job director-co-producer Charles Ferguson and co-producer Audrey Marrs on the 2011 Oscars’ Red Carpet. Inside Job won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.
The film takes a look at the causes behind the global economic meltdown that began in 2008, disrupting the livelihoods – and lives – of hundreds of millions of people. Greed and corruption among the moneyed elite (in addition to public apathy, stupidity, and ignorance) were the key culprits. Matt Damon is the documentary’s narrator.
Besides Charles Ferguson’s Inside Job, this year’s Best Documentary Feature nominees were the following:
- Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley’s Waste Land.
- Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic’s GasLand.
- Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger’s Restrepo.
- Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz’s Exit Through the Gift Shop.
Oscar-winning Inside Job co-producer Audrey Marrs and director-co-producer Charles Ferguson photo: Darren Decker / © A.M.P.A.S.
Jeremy Renner on the Oscar Red Carpet
Best Supporting Actor Academy Award nominee Jeremy Renner greets Scarlett Johansson at the 83rd Academy Awards held on Feb. 27, ’11, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Renner’s Best Supporting Actor nomination was for Ben Affleck’s ensemble crime drama The Town. He was the film’s only cast member to be shortlisted for this year’s Oscar.
A year ago, Renner was a Best Actor Oscar nominee for Kathryn Bigelow’s Iraq War drama The Hurt Locker. He lost to Jeff Bridges in Scott Cooper’s Crazy Heart. This year, Renner lost to Christian Bale in David O. Russell’s The Fighter.
Scarlett Johansson wasn’t nominated for anything, but she and Matthew McConaughey presented the Academy Award for Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. As expected, Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi adventure Inception, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, won in both categories.
Jeremy Renner and Scarlett Johansson photo: Ivan Vejar / © A.M.P.A.S.
Jeremy Renner movies
Jeremy Renner has been featured in nearly 20 movies and about a dozen television productions.
Big-screen credits include David Jacobson’s Dahmer (2002), in which he played gay serial murderer Jeffrey Dahmer; Clark Johnson’s S.W.A.T. (2003), with Colin Farrell; Niki Caro’s North Country (2005), with Charlize Theron and Frances McDormand; Juan Carlos Fresnadillo’s 28 Weeks Later (2007), with Rose Byrne; and Andrew Dominik’s The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007), with Brad Pitt and Casey Affleck.
Renner will next be seen in Kenneth Branagh’s Thor, starring Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, and Tom Hiddleston, and in Brad Bird’s Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, starring Tom Cruise and Paula Patton.
Jeremy Renner and Valerie Cearley photo: John Selig / © A.M.P.A.S.
Jeremy Renner greets John Hawkes on the Oscars’ Red Carpet outside the Kodak Theatre. Hawkes was another 2011 Best Supporting Actor nominee, for Debra Granik’s Winter’s Bone, starring Best Actress nominee Jennifer Lawrence.
Jeremy Renner and John Hawkes photo: Ivan Vejar / © A.M.P.A.S.
Abhishek Bachchan & Aishwarya Rai
Pictured above are Bollywood stars Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan arriving at the 2011 Academy Awards ceremony, which took place on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood.
Two years ago, Danny Boyle’s Anglo-Indian-American co-production Slumdog Millionaire became not only one of the season’s biggest sleeper hits, but also the eventual Best Picture Oscar winner. Dev Patel and Freida Pinto starred.
Curiously, some have complained that Slumdog Millionaire was just a less interesting rehash of higher-quality Bollywood musicals and dramas that have received relatively little play outside South Asian communities around the globe.
Abhishek Bachchan & Aishwarya Rai movies
The son of Indian cinema legend Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan has been featured in nearly 50 films. Among them are Sanjay Gadhvi’s Dhoom (2004), with Uday Chopra and John Abraham, and Dhoom 2 (2006), with Aishwarya Rai, Uday Chopra, and Hrithik Roshan; Ram Gopal Varma’s Sarkar Raj (2008), with Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai; and Tarun Mansukhani’s controversial, (faux) gay-themed Dostana (2008), with John Abraham and Priyanka Chopra.
Besides Dhoom 2 and Sarkar Raj, Bollywood superstar Aishwarya Rai movies – at times billed as Aishwarya Rai Bachchan – include Gurinder Chadha’s Bride & Prejudice (2004), a Bollywoodized adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, with Martin Henderson and four-time Academy Award nominee Marsha Mason; and Harald Zwart’s The Pink Panther 2 (2009), with Steve Martin and Jean Reno.
Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan were married in 2007.
* Marsha Mason’s four Best Actress Oscar nominations were for the following: Hal Ashby’s Cinderella Liberty (1973), Herbert Ross’ The Goodbye Girl (1977), Robert Moore’s Chapter Two (1979), and Glenn Jordan’s Only When I Laugh (1981).
Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai photo: Greg Harbaugh / © A.M.P.A.S.
Justin Timberlake at the Academy Awards
The Social Network actor Justin Timberlake is pictured above as he arrives at the 83rd Academy Awards, which took place on Sunday, Feb. 27, ’11, at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood.
At the ceremony, Timberlake and Black Swan actress Mila Kunis introduced the nominees – and eventual winners – in the animation categories. Throughout the proceedings, he pretended to be the elusive Banksy, whose Exit Through the Gift Shop was a Best Documentary Feature contender.
The joke fell mostly flat, but Timberlake actually elicited some laughs when he imitated three-time Oscar-nominated veteran Kirk Douglas, who mercilessly stretched the Best Supporting Actress announcement into what seemed like hours. Admittedly, Douglas was funny. (The winner in that particular category turned out to be Melissa Leo for David O. Russell’s The Fighter.)
As announced by the Justin Timberlake-Mila Kunis duo, the Best Animated Short Film was Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann’s The Lost Thing. The Best Animated Feature was, as expected, Lee Unkrich’s Pixar blockbuster Toy Story 3.
And not coincidentally, in a few months Oscar presenters Timberlake and Kunis will be seen together in Will Gluck’s romantic comedy Friends with Benefits.
Justin Timberlake movies
Formerly known as a member of the hugely popular boy band NSYNC, Justin Timberlake has been quite busy on the big screen. Below is a short list of Timberlake movies.*
- Runner Runner (2013).
Director: Brad Furman.
Cast: Justin Timberlake. Ben Affleck. Gemma Arterton. Anthony Mackie. Oliver Cooper. Michael Esper. Christian George. John Heard.
- Inside Llewyn Davis (2013).
Director: Joel and Ethan Coen.
Cast: Oscar Isaac. Carey Mulligan. Justin Timberlake. Ethan Phillips. Max Masella. Adam Driver. John Goodman. Robin Bartlett. Garrett Hedlund. Alex Karpovsky. F. Murray Abraham.
- Trouble with the Curve (2012).
Director: Robert Lorenz.
Cast: Clint Eastwood. Amy Adams. Justin Timberlake. Ed Lauter. Scott Eastwood. John Goodman.
- In Time (2011).
Director: Andrew Niccol.
Cast: Justin Timberlake. Olivia Wilde. John Galecki.
- Friends with Benefits (2011).
Director: Will Gluck.
Cast: Justin Timberlake. Mila Kunis.
- Bad Teacher (2011).
Director: Jake Kasdan.
Cast: Cameron Diaz. Justin Timberlake. Jason Segel. Lucy Punch.
- The Social Network (2010).
Director: David Fincher.
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg. Justin Timberlake. Andrew Garfield. Armie Hammer. Rooney Mara. Max Minghella. Joseph Mazzello. Josh Pence. Rashida Jones. Dakota Johnson.
- Yogi Bear (2010).
Director: Eric Brevig.
Voice Cast: Justin Timberlake. Day Aykroyd. Anna Faris. Tom Cavanagh. T.J. Miller.
- Southland Tales (2006).
Director: Richard Kelly.
Cast: Seann William Scott. Lou Taylor Pucci. Dwayne Johnson. Sarah Michelle Gellar. Mandy Moore. Amy Poehler. Justin Timberlake. Miranda Richardson. Christopher Lambert. Bai Ling. Zelda Rubinstein. Kevin Smith.
* Justin Timberlake film list updated in April 2015.
Justin Timberlake photo on the Oscars’ Red Carpet: Greg Harbaugh / © A.M.P.A.S.
Oscar-winning film editor Kirk Baxter
Pictured above is film editor Kirk Baxter arriving with a guest at the 83rd Academy Awards.
Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall shared the 2011 Best Film Editing Oscar for their work on The Social Network – until fairly recently the odds-on favorite in the Best Picture category.
As it turned out, Tom Hooper’s The King’s Speech walked away with that particular Oscar.
Baxter also edited two episodes of the Netflix series House of Cards.
* Kirk Baxter film list updated in April 2015.
Oscar-winning film editor Kirk Baxter photo: Richard Harbaugh / © A.M.P.A.S.
Oscar winner ‘In a Better World’ director Susanne Bier
Susanne Bier, whose In a Better World won the 2011 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar, is seen above on the 83rd Academy Awards’ Red Carpet, just outside the Kodak Theatre.
The other 2011 Oscar nominees in the Best Foreign Language Film category were:
- Outside the Law / Hors-la-loi. Algeria.
Director: Rachid Bouchareb.
- Biutiful. Mexico.
Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu.
- Dogtooth. Greece.
Director: Yorgos Lanthimos.
- Incendies. Canada.
Director: Denis Villeneuve.
As in previous years, several international favorites were left out of the 2011 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar competition. Among these were the following:
- Of Gods and Men / Des hommes et des dieux. France. French Academy César winner.
Director: Xavier Beauvois.
- Bal / Honey. Turkey. 2010 Berlin Film Festival winner.
Director: Semih Kaplanoglu.
- Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives / Loong Boonmee raleuk chat. Thailand. 2010 Cannes Film Festival winner.
Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul.
Prior to In a Better World, Susanne Bier’s After the Wedding / Efter brylluppet, starring Mads Mikkelsen, was shortlisted for the 2006 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. The winner that year was Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s The Lives of Others / Das Leben der Anderen (Germany).
Rare woman director of Best Foreign Language Film Oscar winner
Susanne Bier was only the third woman director to take home the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. Her predecessors were:
- Marleen Gorris.
Antonia’s Line / Antonia. The Netherlands. 1995.
- Caroline Link.
Nowhere in Africa / Nirgendwo in Afrika. Germany. 2002.
Initially a “special award,” the Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award was instituted in 1947 (presented – to Vittorio de Sica’s Shoeshine / Sciuscià – in early 1948).
It became a competitive category in 1956 (presented – to Federico Fellini’s La Strada– in early 1957).
Susanne Bier movies
May 2015 Update: Following In a Better World, Susanne Bier has directed three feature films.
- Love Is All You Need / Den skaldede frisør (2012).
Cast: Trine Dyrholm. Stina Ekblad. Sebastian Jessen. Paprika Steen. Pierce Brosnan.
- En chance til (2014).
Cast: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau. Ulrich Thomsen. Nikolaj Lie Kaas. Maria Bonnevie.
- Serena (2014).
Cast: Bradley Cooper. Jennifer Lawrence. Rhys Ifans. Toby Jones. David Dencik. Sean Harris. Ana Ularu.
Additionally, Bier is currently directing the AMC TV miniseries The Night Manager, starring Olivia Colman, Tom Hiddleston, Elizabeth Debicki, Dorian Harewood, Tom Hollander, and Hugh Laurie. The Night Manager is scheduled to air in 2016.
According to reports, next in line for Susanne Bier is the feature Mary Queen of Scots, from a screenplay by Michael Hirst and Penelope Skinner, and to star Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Saoirse Ronan (Atonement) in the title role.
Mary Stuart on the big screen
As an aside, previous big-screen portrayals of Mary Stuart include the following:
- Katharine Hepburn in John Ford’s Mary of Scotland (1936), with Florence Eldridge as Queen Elizabeth I.
- Best Actress Oscar nominee Vanessa Redgrave in Charles Jarrott’s Mary, Queen of Scots (1971), opposite Glenda Jackson as Elizabeth.
- Samantha Morton in Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007), starring Best Actress Oscar nominee Cate Blanchett as Elizabeth.
Susanne Bier Oscar Red Carpet photo: Richard Harbaugh / © A.M.P.A.S.
Susanne Bier movies via the IMDb.
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (A.M.P.A.S.) website.