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Ashley Grace Fosters Dialogue On Child Abuse Epidemic With Socially Conscious Short ‘Hunter Gatherer’

An actress known for turns in Chronicle, True Blood and True Detective, Ashley Grace (née Hinshaw) appeared at United Talent Agency last night for a screening of her first directorial outing, a socially conscious dramatic short entitled Hunter Gatherer. Shot in Grace's native Indiana last fall when the director was seven-and-a-half months pregnant, the short follows Rose (Grace), who goes to reconcile with her drug-addicted brother, instead finding in his home the nephew… Read


Black Showrunners Talk Diversity And Progress At The Paley Center

There was a time, not that long ago, when each of the six Black showrunners at tonight's "They Run the Show" panel at the Paley Center were the only African Americans in the writers' rooms they started out in. "I was the diversity," laughed Power showrunner Courtney Kemp about her days breaking into the business. "After I left Girlfriends, I didn't work with another black individual for eight years," said Insecure showrunner Prentice Penny. "Eight years!?" marveled… Read


‘An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn’: Watch Deadline’s Sundance Series Panel Livestream

An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn

Deadline's annual Sundance Series filmmaker panels continue today with An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn, the new film from The Greasy Strangler director Jim Hosking that is world premiering later this evening in the Sundance Film Festival’s NEXT section. Stars Aubrey Plaza, Craig Robinson, Jemaine Clement and Matt Berry will join Hosking and Deadline's Dominic Patten at the Stella Artois Filmmaker Lounge on Main Street to discuss the film, which might be best described… Read


Octavia Spencer On Female Empowerment Movement: “Can’t Be About Women Vs. Men” – Sundance ‘Power Of Story’ Panel

Octavia Spencer

At the “The Power of Story: Culture of Shift” panel at the Sundance Film Festival this morning, Octavia Spencer reminded the crowd that the current female empowerment revolution of #MeToo and Time’s Up “can’t be about women versus men.” Rather, she said, we need to make sure “it’s about the people being abused, and that this (movement) is to empower them.” “We have to allow these voices to be heard,” said Spencer. “We can’t rush to judgement.” But “it’s also about power… Read


Media Content Wars Will Require Both Scale And Reach; “A Brand Only Gets You So Far” — NATPE

Traditional media execs have been assailed in some corners for their allegiance to the notion of a brand — be it a network, a studio or talent — that they rely on to draw audiences to content. An executive panel closed out the Streaming Summit at NATPE by considering how dramatically the idea of brands has changed — and in some ways how vital it remains. Wall Street analyst Michael Nathanson said Disney’s public posture on its OTT strategy changed from, essentially, “kids… Read


‘Thor: Ragnarok’s Taika Waititi Talks Using His Toolbox To Build A Tentpole – The Contenders Video

Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi provided what would certainly get votes as the most entertaining Q&A at Deadline’s annual The Contenders awards-season event last month when he took the stage to talk about the Marvel Studios blockbuster. His Disney/Marvel film that very weekend had opened to a massive $118 million first frame, and Waititi was in a celebratory mood. He admitted to the SRO crowd of AMPAS and key guild voters that he had a cup of whiskey and coffee in… Read


Martin McDonagh & Sam Rockwell On Building ‘Three Billboards’ – The Contenders Video

Martin McDonagh Sam Rockwell

To date, Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri has struck a chord during awards season, earning five Golden Globe nominations including Best Drama and five SAG Awards including best ensemble, the org’s top prize. While McDonagh delivered a zany comedy five years ago in the crime-action title Seven Psychopaths, he zeroes in on a serious drama involving a grieving single mother’s anger against an arguably corrupt police department which has failed to… Read


How Christopher Nolan Brought The ‘Dunkirk’ Spirit To The Screen Against The Odds – The Contenders Video

Hoyte Van Hoytema Emma Thomas Dunkirk

Dunkirk opened in July and became a big summer hit despite the fact this relatively little-known story of a massive rescue of 300,000 mostly British soldiers from the beaches of the French town of Dunkirk in 1940 was not typical summer fare. But the Christopher Nolan film worked for audiences and critics, and now is firmly in the awards-season firmament (in fact, Nolan so far has received more Best Director prizes from critics groups than any other filmmaker this… Read


Getting To The Heart Of ‘Coco’ – The Contenders Video

Lee Unkrich

It’s not just about heart, emotion and laughs with a Pixar film — there also is a tremendous amount of research and time that goes into getting its backdrops authentically right. That couldn’t be more the case than with the animation studio’s November hit Coco, which takes place during the Mexican holiday Dia de Los Muertos. Coco follows a young boy, Miguel, who wishes to be a star-studded crooner of standards, just like his grandfather, the legendary singer Ernesto de la… Read


Clothes Make The Characters In ‘Phantom Thread’ – The Contenders Video

When it came to making a drama thriller about a perfectionist fashion designer, filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson reached out to his longtime costume designer of seven films Mark Bridges for Phantom Thread. The film follows Daniel Day-Lewis as British couturier Reynolds Woodcock, who lives a lonely life among his staff and his caretaking sister Cyril (Lesley Manville) as he dresses 1950s London high society. While out in the country for breakfast one day, he stumbles upon a… Read


Director Sean Baker On Building ‘The Florida Project’ – The Contenders Video

Sean Baker Brooklynn Prince Florida Project

There are few movies this year that leave moviegoers in tears, and you can count A24’s The Florida Project as one of them. Having been tipped about the families living in squalor in run-down Kissimmee, FL hotels by his screenwriter Chris Bergoch, filmmaker Sean Baker turned his camera on the emotional realities of the setting — specifically through the eyes of children who run freely begging for money, swimming, eating ice cream cones, and enjoying the heat of their… Read


Guillermo Del Toro On ‘The Shape Of Water’: “We Were Not Designing A Monster, We Were Designing A Leading Man” – The Contenders Video

Guillermo Del Toro

As should be clear by now, monsters are anything but monstrous to Guillermo del Toro, whose Venice hit The Shape of Water from Fox Searchlight portrays the surreal love affair between mute military-base cleaning woman Elisa (Sally Hawkins) and a captured psychedelic fish-man (Doug Jones) against the backdrop of Cold War America. "To me, monsters are different from anyone," said the Mexican director at Deadline's seventh annual The Contenders awards-season event last… Read