FOCUS
Rating: About Ratings
Opens: 02/27/2015
Running Time: 144
Rated: R
Cast: Will Smith, Margot Robbie, B.D. Wong, Rodrigo Santoro and Gerald McRaney.
Crew: Directors: Glenn Ficarra and John Requa. Producer: Denise Di Novi. Executive Producers: Charlie Gogolak and Stan Wlodkowski. Screenwriters: Glenn Ficarra and John Requa. Cinematographer: Xavier Grobet.
REVIEW: By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

In the new movie, “Focus” from directors Glenn Ficara and John Requa (“Bad Santa” and “Crazy Stupid Love”), Will Smith plays a master con artist who can seduce you with his “Big Willie” style charm and steal your watch and wallet before you can blink an eye.

It really is hard to resist Nicky Spurgeon (Smith) and even more foolish for someone to try and con this veteran con man like the alluring Jess (Margot Robbie, “The Wolf of Wall Street”) tries to do when meeting Nicky at a Manhattan bar.

Jess invites Nicky to her hotel room thinking this guy is going to be an easy target. Her accomplice Gareth (Griff Furst, TV’s “Banshee”) is pretending to be her husband and bursts into their room with a gun and demands money and jewelry from Nicky.

It’s a fake gun and Nicky finds the poorly orchestrated shakedown laughable. You can’t con a con.

Yet, Nicky is intrigued by Jess and offers to show her the ropes of the con business. He introduces Jess to his sharp team of hustlers who are targeting visitors to the Super Bowl in New Orleans. Their method of operation is so well orchestrated it’s scary.

Nicky also has a huge plan in place to con a high stakes gambler (a terrific BD Wong, TV’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and “NCIS: New Orleans”) and it’s a blast to see it play out.

Nicky realizes that his romantic involvement with Jess is a distraction and could compromise his work. So he decides to give her a sizeable cut of his profits and leave her as he prepares for a huge heist in Argentina that involves a race car driver named Garriga (Rodrigo Santoro, “300: Rise of an Empire”) and Gerald McRaney (“The Best of Me”).

But this plot gets even juicier when Nicky arrives in Buenos Aires and finds Jess there clinging all over Garriga.

OK. So who is zooming who now?

Smith and Robbie make a formidable pair and ooze tons of lusty chemistry. Robbie, who made a name for herself as Leonardo DiCaprio’s love interest in “The Wolf of Wall Street,” has a meatier role this time around and she owns it.

“Focus” is a slick, sexy crime caper that rarely stumbles or falls into the typical clichéd heist movie territory.

And if there’s a lesson to be learned from the movie,” it’s being aware of your surroundings and watch out for anyone who “accidently” bumps into you. You just never know who is out to get you as part of their con.

Editor's Note: Be sure to catch my N2Entertainment.net movie talk segment on the Kitty O'Neal Show Fridays at 6:40 p.m. on radio station KFBK 1530 AM and 93.1 FM.

Take A Peek At This Trailer For "FOCUS."...
 

Rated: PG
Opens: 02/20/2015
McFarland USA

Rated: PG
Opens: 02/27/2015
The Lazarus Effect

Rated: PG-13
Opens: 02/20/2015
Two Days, One Night

Rated: R
Opens: 02/20/2015
Hot Tub Time Machine 2

Rated: R
Opens: 02/27/2015
Leviathan

Rated: R
Opens: 02/06/2015
Still Alice


OLD SCHOOL VIDEO PICK OF THE MONTH

Brian's Song Title: Brian's Song
Year Released: 1971
Running Time: 90
Production Company: Sony (Screen Gems)
Director: Buzz Kulik
Director of Photography: Joseph F. Biroc
Screenwriter: William Blinn
Author: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

REVIEW: Now with summer behind us, the arrival of fall means weekends attending and watching plenty of football games. Whether they’re college, pro or high school, I’m all over them. I’m looking forward to attending a few games at the San Francisco 49ers new Levi’s Stadium.

On the college front, my husband Rickey is a former UC Davis player/alum and...
NEW ON DVD

The Hunger Games: MockingJay Part I <b>(March 3)</b> Title: The Hunger Games: MockingJay Part I (March 3)
Year Released: 2014
Running Time: 123
Production Company: Lionsgate Films
Director: Francis Lawrence
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

"THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART I"

The “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part 1” left audiences wanting more. And now with the second version, “Part 2” coming out this November the anticipation will no doubt continue to build.

While there aren’t any vicious, brutal fight to the death games involving tributes like in previous films, “Mockingjay—Part I,” is still a very dark, gritty and somber movie.

Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) has been rescued from the underground military compound and is now reunited with her sister Prim (Willow Shields), her boy toy Gale (Liam Hemsworth), and a suprisingly sober Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson).

Many now consider Katniss a hero. Consequently, she’s being pressured by the rebellion leaders President Alma Coin (Julianne Moore) and Plutarch Heavensbee (the late, Phillip Seymour Hoffman) to become the face of the revolution, the “Mockingjay.” They want her to help unite the masses and take down President Snow (Donald Sutherland), the haughty leader of Panem, and his oppressive regime.

At first Katniss isn’t sure she wants the responsibility. It does come with a steep price. However, when she witnesses Snow’s public display of evilness and his execution of innocent people, Katniss must take a stand.

And when Katniss discovers that President Snow has captured and brainwashed Peeta (Josh Hutcherson), to join forces with The Capitol, she’s more determined than ever to lead the charge.

Once again Lawrence gives a commanding performance. She is the face of this young adult franchise and without a doubt the reason for its success.

Not to be outdone is Sutherland who is perfectly suited for his haughty, power hungry role. Elizabeth Banks. (“Magic Mike XXL”) shines too. Although her Effie Trinket character is not nearly as outlandish as we’ve seen in the past, her feistiness remains on full display. She delivers some humorous lines that lighten up “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part I.” Here's to hoping the final chapter is a real stunner.
(Recommended).

Beyond The Lights <b>(Feb. 24)</b> Title: Beyond The Lights (Feb. 24)
Year Released: 2014
Running Time: 137
Production Company: 20th Century Fox
Director: Gina Prince Bythewood
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

"BEYOND THE LIGHTS"

Due to the Oscars, I didn’t get a chance last week to post my review of “Beyond the Lights.” I can’t say enough good things about this movie. It’s absolutely phenomenal and deserved so much more acclaim than it received during its theatrical run.

Screenwriter and director Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Love & Basketball”) takes an unflinching, behind the scenes look at the hip-hop and pop music world and how it promotes its entertainers.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw (“Belle”) stars as Noni, a young, beautiful and sultry hip-hop singer, who along with her mother/manager Macy Jean (Minnie Driver, TV’s “About a Boy”) have come a long way from entering small, singing competitions and roughing it on the streets of London.

Noni is a big time superstar living in Los Angeles and is about to release her debut album. She’s already s sensation on the Billboard charts with several hit songs thanks in part to her rapper boyfriend Kid Culprit (Colson “Machine Gun Kelly” Baker). They’re a hit at the BET Awards and every other show. they perform.

By all appearances, Noni seems to have the world on a string. However, looks can be deceiving. Everyone starts to question her mental state after she goes out on her hotel balcony ledge and attempts to jump but is rescued in the nick of time by a strapping L.A. cop named Kaz (Nate Parker, “Non-Stop”). He’s been on guard all night outside her hotel door.

To say that Noni and Kaz have a moment is an understatement. These two know immediately their lives are about to change especially Kaz’s. Talk about a come up.

But first, Noni’s handlers have to make sure everyone is on the same page about what happened on the balcony, including Kaz. Noni didn’t attempt suicide she simply slipped after having one too many cocktails.

Holding a press conference does nothing more than fuel speculation that Noni is suffering from depression. Everyone from TMZ to the National Enquirer is after the big scoop.

First they have to get past Kaz, who can’t get Noni off his mind and makes a point to sneak her away from the paparazzi.

But Kaz has to watch his step. He’s being groomed by his father (a terrific Danny Glover) who is also a cop, to make a run in politics. He tells Kaz that hanging around a “troubled” hottie like Noni will tarnish his reputation.

Parker and Mbatha-Raw are just dynamic together. The conflicts that arise between them—particularly when Noni must decide what direction she wants her like to take--comes across with sincerity.

“Beyond the Lights” is well-written and the acting is first rate. It’s unfortunate that it took nearly 14 years for Prince-Bythewood to get such an insightful and outstanding movie like this to the big screen. This is a must-see.
(Highly Recommended).

Whiplash <b>(Feb. 24)</b> Title: Whiplash (Feb. 24)
Year Released: 2014
Running Time: 107
Production Company: Sony Pictures Classics
Director: Damien Chazelle
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

"WHIPLASH"

J.K. Simmons won the “Best Supporting Actor” Oscar at the 87th Annual Academy Awards for his outstanding performance as Fletcher, a tyrannical music teacher in “Whiplash.

Fletcher’s newest student and target is Andrew (Miles Teller, “Divergent,” The Spectacular Now” and “Footloose”). Despite Andrew learning his music quickly and drumming until his fingers literally bleed, his effort never seems good enough for Fletcher.

Fletcher humiliates Andrew at every turn but Teller can’t quit. He’s worked way to hard to get here and has dreamed of being accepted in New York’s prestigious Shaffer Conservatory of Music. (A fictional take on Boston’s Berklee).

Andrew’s father Jim (Paul Reiser, TV’s “Married”) is proud of his son. He’s encouraged and supported Andrew ever since he bought him his first drum set at age 5. Jim knows what it’s like to pursue something you love. Although his career as an author never took flight, he definitely wants Andrew to succeed.

But at what price?

Together, Teller and Simmons bring a chilling intensity to “Whiplash.” It’s absolutely mesmerizing. See this movie now.
(Highly Recommended).

(Editor’s Note:) Some of the Extras on the "Whiplash" Blu-ray DVD include a deleted scene, a drumming featurette and the 2013 original short film "Whiplash."

St. Vincent <b>(Feb. 17)</b> Title: St. Vincent (Feb. 17)
Year Released: 2014
Running Time: 102
Production Company: The Weinstein Company
Director: Theodore Melfi
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

"ST. VINCENT"

“St. Vincent” is another fine movie that was pretty much overlooked during awards season. It’s a comedy/drama that completely wins you over with its boldness, wittiness and sentimentality.

And while Bill Murray (“The Monuments Men” and “Hyde Park on Hudson”) gives one of his finest performances to date playing a mean, old crusty guy named Vincent, it’s the little kid Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher,) that he befriends, who is the real heart and soul of this movie.

Lieberher is destined for big things. Mark my word, you’ll be seeing this kid around for some time. He’s extremely talented and his memorable performance in St. Vincent is proof.

Vincent (Murray) lives--or maybe exists might be a better word—in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. He spends much of his time drinking at the local bar, gambling at the race track and hanging out at his favorite strip club. The latter place is where Vincent met his Russian stripper/prostitute girlfriend, Daka (Naomi Watts, “Birdman”). She’s a real pistol and is about to have his baby.

Vincent doesn’t have much money. There’s a bigger and more touching reason why he owns everyone. Still, that doesn’t stop shady guys like Zucko (an underused Terrence Howard) from popping up waiting to get paid.

Vincent is so broke that he even has to set up some sort of payment plan for Daka’s nocturnal visits.

So when a moving company--hired by his new neighbors Maggie,(Melissa McCarthy, TV’s Mike & Molly”), and her 12-year-old son Oliver (Lieberher,)--backs into his tree and tumbles on top of his car, Vincent seizes the opportunity.

Surprisingly, since Maggie, is a single parent and a nurse technician who works long hours, she agrees to have Vincent babysit Oliver. Vincent needs the money so badly that he does it.

Oliver learns almost as much from Vincent as he does at his Catholic school and his teacher Brother Geraghty (Chris O’ Dowd, “Cuban Fury”). And when Oliver is asked to write an assignment on someone who they believe has saint like qualities, can you guess who Oliver chooses?

His presentation, which is complete with slideshow footage of Vincent from days gone by is a real heart stopper. “St. Vincent” is a superb movie.
(Highly Recommended).
  MOVIE TRIVIA
 
THE THEME FOR THE MOVIE "BRIAN'S SONG" "THE HANDS OF TIME" WAS ORIGINALLY COMPOSED BY WHICH ONE OF THE FOLLOWING MUSICIANS?
HENRY MANCINI
MICHEL LEGRAND
JOHNNY MATHIS
FLOYD CRAMER
 
  "REEL" MOVIE NEWS
patricia arquette By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA--Patricia Arquette won the “Best Supporting Actress” Oscar Award for her role in “Boyhood.”

Arquette spoke with conviction and passion about what winning the Oscar means to her and working with the film’s director Richard Linklater.

She also spoke at length about equal rights for women and using her platform to reach out even more now and help those in need.

Here’s what else Arquette discussed with the press backstage at the 87th Annual Academy Awards on Feb. 22.

Q.What was the biggest challenge in this project for you?

A. The weird thing is there was no challenge, in a weird way. I was just amazed that this filmmaker, Richard Linklater, wanted to make a movie about everyday people, people we don't usually see in movies, and that he could get financing because it is a film business after all, and you can't have a contract because Olivia de Havilland fought for us not to be in indentured servitude. So we have a seven year contract rule in America. So, this little boy could have decided at seven years he wanted to walk away. And even though it was a small budget movie, $2.8 million, he could have walked away in the middle of our movie. To sort of find a financier to give us money, even though it was just $2.8 million. That's a big investment to make with no safety net. And I was actually kind of blown away that the Producers Guild didn't honor that because that really was such a brave move.

Q. Did you see Meryl Streep's reaction?

A. I didn't, but I heard about it, and I hugged her afterwards. And she's the queen of all actresses, patron saint of actresses. So, it's amazing, but it is time for us. It is time for women. Equal means equal. And the truth is, the older women get, the less money they make. The more children the highest percentage of children living in poverty are female headed households. And it's inexcusable that we go around the world and we talk about equal rights for women in other countries and we don't one of those Superior Court justices said two years ago in a in a law speech at a university, we don't have equal rights for women in America and we don't because when they wrote the Constitution, they didn't intend it for women. So, the truth is, even though we sort of feel like we have equal rights in America, right under the surface, there are huge issues that are applied that really do affect women. And it's time for all the women in America and all the men that love women, and all the gay people, and all the people of color that we've all fought for to fight for us now.

Q. How do you feel about representing so many years of lives? I mean, we are talking about this boy. We are also talking about your relationship and Ethan Hawke's relationship with a son. How could you build this character for so many years?

A. Well, Richard Linklater loves human beings. And by the time he decided to make this story, he wanted to make an autobiographical story, not just of his own childhood as a boy growing up through his perspective, but also by that point, he had become a parent. And even though he judged his mom and his dad growing up, at that point that he was an adult and a parent, he realized how hard it was for his mom, how hard it was for his dad, how much they'd grown as people. And he wanted to show that whole picture. And my parents were already gone, and I felt like I always took my mom somewhat for granted. I always took my dad somewhat for granted. My dad had that same wild spirit Ethan's character had. He was kind of bisected between being free and being in a family and I thought Ethan did such a beautiful job with that, and we all just thought about art in the same way.

Q. What do you think, given the comments you made tonight about someone like Amy Pascal, the former Sony Pictures head who said, effectively, that women should be better negotiators, that it's not up to her to pay women more when she has effectively underpaid women.

A. Again, I think we need federal laws that are comprehensive; in different states, they have altogether thrown out the Fairness Voting Act. People think we have equal rights; we won't until we pass a Constitutional amendment in the United States of America where we pass the ERA once and for all and women have equal rights in America we won't have anything changed. This morning, you know, there's these things, the Mani Cam and so on and what are you wearing. I'm wearing a dress my best friend designed. We have been best friends since we were seven and eight years old. I think she was the first person who ever said to me, what do you want to be when we grow up? We were standing next to her Barbie Dream House. I made fun of her because she played with a Barbie and my mom wouldn't let us have Barbies. She said, what do you want to be? And I said I want to be an actor. What do you want to be? She said, I want to be in fashion. And she became a great fashion designer and she designed my gown, so it's like wearing love. And we started an organization, GiveLove.org. And instead of getting a manicure, which I was supposed to do this morning for that dreaded Mani Cam, instead, I ended up trying to pull pictures because we started a sweepstakes this morning for our charity to do ecological sanitation in the world. Now when I saw Harry Belafonte's picture up there, I remembered my mom. She was an Equal Rights activist, she worked for civil rights. And this is who I am. This is the whole who I am. I love my business, I love acting and I love being a human being on earth and I want to help. I never saw this moment in me winning an Academy Award. I never even thought I would be nominated and I was okay with that. But you know what I did see? I saw many things that have come true in my life, and one of them was helping thousands and thousands of people, and I have, and I will, and I will help millions of people. Thank you.

EDDIE REDMAYNE—(“Best Actor in a Leading Role” (“The Theory of Everything”)

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA-- He did it. Eddie Redmayne won the “Best Actor” Oscar for his portrayal of physicist Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything,” and beat Michael Keaton who was considered a frontrunner for the coveted award.

Redmayne was absolutely thrilled about winning the golden statue when he spoke with press backstage at the 87th Annual Academy Awards on Feb. 22.

Q. Q. Can you talk about the work you did with a ballet dancer to prepare for the role?

A. Absolutely. So when I was approaching the film, we knew we weren't going to be out of shoot chronologically. So we were going to have to jump into different stages in Stephen's life and within the same day. And so I didn't want for Stephen the illness was of very little interest to him after he was diagnosed. He's someone that lives forward and lives passionately. And so, similarly, I didn't want the film to be about the physicality. So I wanted to have the physicality so embedded in me that we could play the human story, the love story. And so I went to ALS clinics in London for about four months with a choreographer, wonderful Alex Reynolds, and she helped to sort of train my muscles to sustain those positions for long periods of time.

Q. Eddie, what are you going to be saying to Stephen Hawking following this win? And are you going to be taking the statuette to show him as well?

A. I think I will certainly go to Cambridge at some point to see Stephen, Jane, Jonathan, and the Hawking children. They have been so kind to us the whole way through this process. And it's I'm one of those people when I watch a film, I believe what I see on screen. And so our responsibility to tell their story truthfully and authentically was...we felt it. And so, their support throughout has been amazing. Any excuse to go back to Cambridge, it's such a beautiful place. So, yeah, I will definitely go and show it.

Q. Congratulations. Now that you're an Oscar winner, what would you like to say to the actors that you learned so much from, Alan Fletcher and Jackie Woodburne?

A. I think they're amazing. They huge fans of those them from old. And, yeah, I learned a lot from them, from watching them daily as a kid.

Q. You seem to be on a very glorious journey because after this, you're making “The Danish Girl” and it seems to me that you're just raising the bar of the challenge for yourself. Where do you go from here? I mean, do you go by directors, do you go by projects? Or what's the big plan for the next ten years?

Q. Do you know I wish I could say that there was a plan. The interesting thing is “The Danish Girl” film I'm shooting at the moment, was a film that Tom Hooper, who I was working with on “Les Miserables” gave me that script then. And so, if I'm being totally honest, I've never really had much choice in work wise, I've always had to fight for the jobs and fought pretty hard for them, certainly for “The Theory of Everything.” So as far as where you go from here, just retaining employment will keep me very happy.

Q. Well, first the Golden Globe, then a SAG award and now this, you must have been very nervous. Can you talk a little bit about just like the moment leading up to this, what did you do last night, what did you do this morning and how nervous were you?

A. Do you know what? I was weirdly not that nervous because three years ago, I came to the Oscars for the first time with “Les Miserables” and I had to sing live on stage, and just before going on, someone with a headset said, yeah, that's a billion people watching, and that's too much stress for your vocal chords to possibly consider. So that was such a terrifying prospect but actually today felt much more relaxing. I didn't have to you know, you either win or you lose, either way I was so thrilled to be invited to the party. So, I mean, what's been lovely is actually staying in a hotel in just down the road, and Tom Sturridge and Sienna Miller, all friends of mine, Emma Stone and my wife, Hannah, were there, so it's like pals are there so it felt very special the past half a day.

Q. Can you talk about the pressures of playing someone that is still alive because obviously there's a lot of bio pics, and there obviously is a huge weight like for Alan Turing and “The Imitation Game.” But with this, that person is going to watch that movie. How did you feel about it and how did that change your approach to it?

A. I don't know if it changed my approach, but what it did was there were various things of this job. I in preparation, I met people living with ALS, they let me into their lives, they were incredibly kind to me. It was essential to me that I was authentic to what that experience is like. Then it's about the science, getting the science right, you know, and then of course the main thing about Stephen, Jane, Jonathan and the kids is being true to them and then also making an entertaining film. There were basically so many things that like terrified me about this film, but of course it galvanizes you, it makes you when the stakes are that high, it does force you to work harder and so that's what I tried to do. And yeah, it's been amazing.

Editor's Note: Photo Courtesy Of The Oscars.


<b>“BIRDMAN” FLIES AWAY WITH “BEST PICTURE” AT THE 87TH ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS</b> By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA--So it turns out that “Birdman” wasn’t too quirky after all for Academy voters.

Director Alejandro G. Inarritu's Hollywood story about a washed-up, former superhero actor looking to make a comeback on Broadway, won four Oscars, including “Best Original Screenplay and Inarritu received “Best Director” at the 87th Annual Academy Awards on Feb. 22.

Backstage in the press room Inarritu, talked about his “Birdman” filmmaking journey.

Q. I just wanted to ask first of all, congratulations on the Best Picture win. Incredible. What was it about the story of “Birdman” that made you want to conceive it as a one shot story that sort of brings us through everything that's going on?

A.(Alejandro Iñárritu) You know, it's it's funny. There has been a lot of discussion about this, you know. When you present a film with a strong formal approach, you will have, obviously, strong reactions. People has been sometimes reacting against it or, obviously, accept it passionately. I think, you know, my own intention was not to flash or to impress anybody. I really always thought that the subtlety of the way we did it, it was basically my intention. Maybe I fail. But for me, my intention was that nobody should notice this, that nobody should say, "Oh, my God." I just wanted that the people can got caught in the in the emotional journey of this guy three days before opening a show where everything was falling apart without any with a in a restless kind of journey; and and I thought that without cuts, I will not distract people by this kind of conventional juxtaposition of spaces, and places, and time but just to live in that conscience that is talking to him all the time. So I always want this to be a storytelling, you know, device, something that was more related to that and not the technicality of it. You know what I mean? So, anyway, people sometimes felt in a way, you know, affected by it in a bad way, but the intention is just a narrative tool.

Q. For two years in a row there have been Mexican victories, Last year with “Gravity” now you. What do you have to say about the Mexican directors in America? And now that you won, how do you really feel when you lost back in 2007?

A. (Alejandro Iñárritu) I think here when you arrive to a nomination here, there's no way to lose. I always feel that. I feel that once you are, in a way, selected as a film, competing with great filmmakers, great cinema, you know, it's hard to feel defeated. That's what I tried to convey there. You know, the competition is something that our system of belief has implant on all of us. And the society today and the kids now are so obsessed by competition; because in order for them to feel good or feel somebody, they have to defeat somebody else. And that's absolutely fine. I hate competition. That's the worst and the best. I would say the bad side of all this is that somebody has to be defeated. I will love that this will be just a show of the best films selected, and that's it. So I never have feel defeated. I feel once I finish a film, I feel a successful filmmaker to be able to be you know, to be lucky enough to finish a film. That's that thing is much more than the award I can receive or the critics that can be. It's something that exists already. So that's how I feel.

Q. What's the moment when you are in the edit room where you're watching dailies when you say, "This is something special. This could be a film that is remembered forever. We could get an Oscar for this." And, also, was the casting of Michael Keaton coincidental, because there are parallels between Keaton's “Batman” and, Keaton's “Birdman”?

A.(Alejandro Iñárritu) Well, you know, we all were in the room, in the editing room, and and, honestly, this film was a challenge; because in a way, I was fascinated by the scene itself. But not having the opportunity to see it, you know, complete until the next scene or the last scene, without a context, it was very difficult in the scene to really understand what this thing will come I mean, what will come about this film. So this film was particularly scary to be making, you know. It's very difficult. Sometimes and that's what “Birdman” is about. As an artist some day or two hours, you feel like the greatest and you say, "This is amazing. It's fantastic." And then two hours later, you feel like a dead jellyfish and an idiot. You feel like it's completely defeat guy, and you don't know what you did, what you did, and you fail, and you question. So all that vulnerability that I'm sure that all of you now when you write things, and you said, "I should have said that” and that's part of what challenges us to be better. And anyway, in this case, I was Riggan Thomson seeing the material, saying, "Oh, my God. It's going to be a disaster." So I couldn't really tell until the end. I really felt that it was really special, for me. I never thought that this film will be something that will be touching so many people around the world, and I will be here. Never at all, you know.

Editor’s Note: Some information used in this report obtained from publicity department press releases. Photo Courtesy: Oscars Publicity.


julianne moore By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:

JULIANNE MOORE STRIKES GOLD: WINS “BEST ACTRESS” OSCAR FOR “STILL ALICE”

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA-- It took a minute, but Julianne Moore has finally received an Oscar for her poignant role in the movie, “Still Alice.”

Dressed in a beautiful, sequined cream-colored gown, Moore was beaming from ear to ear when she spoke with the press backstage at the 87th Annual Academy Awards.

Here’s what Moore had to say.

Q. I just want to say that you are the most patient actress in town. Five times nominated and you finally won it. And I want to know, do you think they played a role in the way in that you won this for a film that meant so much to you?

A. Oh, I don't know. You know, I mean, I believe in I believe in hard work, actually, you know. And I think and I like stories about mostly I like stories about people. I like stories about real people and real relationships and real families, and that's what I respond to. And this movie had all of those things in it. It was about a, you know, it's about a real issue and relationships and who we love and what we value. And so that's important to me too. But I mean, I think just, at the end of the day, it's the work. You know, it's being able to do work that I love that's been so rewarding. And this is just amazing.

Q. It's obviously been a long road to get here today through the production, the filming in one season. How has your husband supported you through all this?

A. My husband has been amazing. He has supported me now, he's also the person who walked me up the steps. I don't know if anyone saw that. But this is the first time I've told anybody this, and I'll tell you guys in this room. He was the first person to see the movie. The first time I saw the cut, he came with me. And I told the story about how I heard him crying, and I was like, What's going on? When we walked out of there, he said, you're going to win an Oscar. And I was like, come on. I swear to God, that's what he said to me. And I just couldn't believe he said that. But anyway, that's how much he supported me from the very, very beginning.

Q. We're very eager to see more films that are adult drama, serious films. And I'm wondering, films like yours, “Birdman” do you think that will have some sort of impact in an industry that is driven by these, you know, huge special effects, that whole type of movies?

A. I hope it does. I think there's an audience for movies like this. I go to the movies because, like I said, I like to see complicated, interesting stories about people and relationships, you know. So I think whenever there's success with films like this, then they kind of even people think about them more. I don't know. You know, you never know. You know, at the end of the day, Hollywood is also a business, so I think it depends on how many people buy tickets.

Editor’s Note: Photo Courtesy Of The Oscars.