A new incubator wants to solve the problem of filmmakers not getting paid; imagining a world where Palm Springs and The 40-Year-Old Version are Oscar contenders; how do we want to do this? Fast. All in today’s Movie News Rundown.
‘Why Aren’t Filmmakers Making Money?’: A new project called Constellation Incubator aims to solve perhaps the biggest problem facing indie filmmakers: Not getting paid. It aims to bring together 36 moviemaking teams to produce features, and to borrow ideas from outside Hollywood to get filmmakers paid. It’s accepting applications until tomorrow, and there’s more information in this piece by Caleb Hammond.
Where’s Megan Ellison?: Variety‘s Matt Donnelly has an intriguing look at the “mysterious self-imposed hiatus” of Ellison, the heiress and producer of Zero Dark Thirty, American Hustle and Her, among other films.
Out of the Frying Pan: Rick Wershe, Jr., subject of the documentary White Boy and the Matthew McConaughey feature White Boy Rick, was released from 30 years behind bars in 2017 to finally go… right back behind bars. But things are much better now. Margeaux Sippell spoke with Andy Hale, an attorney who helped Wershe turn his life around.
Oscar Might-Have-Beens: The New York Times‘ Wesley Morris has this deeply considered piece about the moment last year when a true Oscar reimagining felt possible — and it felt like films like Palm Springs or The 40-Year-Old Version could earn Oscar nominations. Morris notes the “full-tilt campaign machine to brainwash voters into picking the same class of movies over and over again” and asks: “What if the people doing the picking got to tell us what they like before everybody else tries guessing — and perhaps implanting — what they will like?” Still, he says, there are things to celebrate about these Oscars, at least optically.
David Oyelowo: Remember the ’80s, when kids went off on crazy misadventures? At least in movies? David Oyelowo does. The actor-producer’s directorial debut, The Water Man, recalls films like Stand by Me and The Goonies that respected both kid and adult audiences. We’ll be posting a very good interview with him soon, but for now, here’s trailer for The Water Man.
Comment of the Day: “Am I the only one who thinks Nomadland is overrated, tedious, simplistic and about 45 minutes too long? Endless shots of an actor starring off into the distance do not make for a compelling narrative. Nor does enlisting ‘real people’ as characters when they are clearly uncomfortable in a scene. This film needed a coherent script with a better lead character (what in the heck was her reason for being a nomad when it was portrayed as a dreary life and she had other options?) I predict this film will not be will remembered, or watched, in the future,” says Sydney Falco, in response to yesterday’s Rundown about Nomadland criticisms.
The Fast and the Furious 9: I read a very long piece today about what it will take to get people into theaters that didn’t have a lot of actual ideas about how to get people into theaters. But what about: release movies people want to see in theaters? Here’s MovieMaker pal Micah Khan:
I know y’all are pumped to go back to the movies but I’m saving myself for Fast & Furious 9. That’s the only movie getting me into a theater. #F9
— Micah Azam Khan (@MicahAzamKhan) April 15, 2021
…and here’s the gloriously ridiculous trailer for The Fast and the Furious 9, a trailer so long it could use an intermission. Of course I’ll see this in a theater:
Main image, above: Cristin Milioti and Andy Samberg in Palm Springs.