December 8, 2012
Eileen Moran, 60, a visual-effects producer who helped create the look of a bevy of blockbuster movies - from the ethereal world of Avatar down to King Kong's 460 billion strands of wind-rustled specially lighted fur - died Sunday in Wellington, New Zealand. The cause was cancer, her sister Janet Hamill said. Ms. Moran worked closely with the director James Cameron on Avatar and with the director Peter Jackson on the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit, to be released in U.S. theaters this month.
August 11, 2012
Special-effects master and three-time Oscar winner Carlo Rambaldi, 86, died Friday in Italy after a long illness, Italian news media reported. Mr. Rambaldi was known as the father of E.T. He won visual effects Oscars for Steven Spielberg's 1982 extraterrestrial hit, as well as Ridley Scott's film Alien in 1979, and John Guillermin's King Kong in 1976. Mr. Rambaldi worked on more than 30 films, but was best known for his work on E.T. , for which he created three robots, two costumes worn by actors in the scenes when E.T. walked, and gloves for the hands.
May 21, 2012 |
One of the obvious differences between The Dictator, the new Sacha Baron Cohen comedy, and Borat and Bruno, his 2006 and 2009 endeavors, is that the latter two, of course, were real. That is, they presented themselves as documentary-like affairs, with Baron Cohen's Kazakh TV personality and Austrian fashion journalist, respectively, inserting themselves into real-life situations with real-life people. Unscripted. Let the fur fly. In The Dictator, Baron Cohen plays General Admiral Haffaz Aladeen, the ruler of a fictional North African republic.
December 27, 2009 |
Avatar and Fantastic Mr. Fox, two of 2009's most satisfying screen endeavors, couldn't be further apart, technology-wise. In vivid ways, they represent the future and the past of filmmaking - the 21st and 20th centuries - and demonstrate with resounding artistry that both innovation and a respect for tradition are essential storytelling components. James Cameron's $230 million-plus sci-fi eco-yarn, about an ex-Marine who joins a blue-skinned tribe on a faraway planet, deployed new 3-D cameras, sophisticated motion-capture devices, an army of digital renderers and more visual effects and CGI than you can shake a stick at. Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox, adapted from the Roald Dahl children's book about a family of foxes and its efforts to, um, outfox a trio of farmers, was filmed in the no-less-painstaking process of stop-motion animation, with puppets repositioned in micro-increments on dollhouse sets.
February 23, 2009 |
Slumdog Millionaire, the Cinderella story of a Mumbai orphan who rises from rags to riches, swept the 81st Academy Awards in Hollywood last night, winning eight of the nine categories in which it was nominated, including best picture and director. It was a stunning triumph for a film that, not unlike its hero, was orphaned by one distributor before it was picked up by another and adopted by audiences around the world. On her sixth Oscar nomination, Kate Winslet won the lead-actress prize for her role as a German tram conductor with two dark secrets in The Reader.
February 23, 2007 |
More than $81,000 in cash belonging to Tennessee Titans cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones was seized by police, who say the money sparked a weekend melee and a triple shooting at a Las Vegas strip club. Jones was showering more than 40 strippers onstage early Monday with cash "intended as a visual effect," a search warrant said. But a scuffle broke out when the Houston promoter who hired the strippers told them to pick up the money. The promoter, identified as Chris Mitchell, owner of "Harlem Knights," and a male associate took a plastic trash bag containing Jones' money and walked out the front door, the warrant says.
March 6, 2006 |
Crash, a Los Angeles tapestry of knotty race relations, won the best picture at the 78th Academy Awards in Hollywood last night. It was one of four movies - including the night's presumptive favorite, Brokeback Mountain - awarded three statuettes. The evening proved something of a Brokeback-lash, as the film was denied the top prize as well as three acting awards. The Oscars honored actors who played real-life figures and supporting players who essayed characters of conscience.
December 2, 2005 |
For all its humor, "Faux Show" would be even better if it had stuck more closely to its theme. Only 14 of the show's 20 artists addressed the concept of imitation or fakeness. I'm still puzzled by the inclusion of Steven Wise's two small paintings of numbers, Charles Hobbs' carved wood snake, and Merrilee Challiss' quiltlike, stitched-together drawings (created with Chris Lawson and Andrea Paschal). The latter two borrow from American craft traditions, certainly, but you'd never think faux.
November 16, 2001 |
Creative Artists Network calls "Hot Off the Press" a show of "emerging printmakers" selected by "an emerging curator. " The ringmaster is Susan White, assistant director of the Print Center. She has chosen seven young artists whose prints embrace a broad range of options, from the traditional expressionism of Chris Hartshorne's woodcuts to Rebekah Tolley's digital distortions of body parts. Eclecticism both characterizes the show and makes it stimulating. For instance, Jungohk (Theresa)
April 2, 2001 |
Is there a link between Viagra and sudden vision loss? Among the millions of men who have tried the drug for erectile dysfunction over the last three years, doctors have reported five cases in which men had permanent loss of some spots of vision. Howard Pomeranz, director of neuro-ophthalmology at the University of Maryland Medical Center, had a 52-year-old patient who experienced sudden and irreversible loss of some side vision within an hour of taking Viagra. Four other documented cases - one of his, two from Texas and one from Missouri - occurred in men within a day after they took Viagra, he said.