Welcome back to the FilmLinc Digest! We hope all of our fellow New Yorkers and those around the Eastern seaboard are safe and sound. We here at the Film Society have been a bit preoccupied these past few days, but with our return to life today, we've gathered up some notable news from the film world.
Kubrick at LACMA
This year we've seen two major works dealing with the cinephilic obsession with Stanley Kubrick. First, there was NYFF Cinema Reflected selection Room 237. Tomorrow, on the first of November, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) will unveil their exhibition on the legendary auteur. Included in this extensive look into Kubrick are his photographs from younger years before filmmaking, annotated screenplays, and documents relating to his two unfinished works: The Aryan Papers and Napoleon. In anticipation of the exhibit's opening, Eyes Wide Shut star Tom Cruise and former Warner Bros. CEO Terry Semel spoke with Interview Magazine about the mysterious master. Semel discusses Kubrick's reclusive yet all-controlling stance with his work: “He worked on every inch of how a movie got promoted. He did the trailer. He decided when it was going to open, and in which city. And all of this was done with the backdrop of, 'No, I cannot leave London or the greater London area.'”
Another major opening in the Los Angeles area tomorrow is the American Film Institute's annual AFI Fest. At Hammer to Nail, Paul Sbrizzi previews what he thinks are the must-sees of the festival including NYFF Main Slate selections Here and There, Amour, Leviathan, and Beyond the Hills.
Antonio Méndez Esparza's Here and There
Disney Purchases LucasFilm, Plans New Star Wars Trilogy
In what was a surprise to all, on Monday, Disney revealed they had completed a purchase of George Lucas' LucasFilm along with its sibling businesses Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound. The acquisition came with the news that Disney plans to release a new trilogy of Star Wars films—Episode 7, 8, and 9—which, unlike the previous six installments, will not be helmed by George Lucas. In a video statement, Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger said: “We truly understand the responsibility of being the caretakers of such iconic characters beloved by hundreds of millions all over the world.” Being that Episode 7 is three years away, fanatics can quench their need for the force with Casey Pugh's Star Wars Uncut, making its second appearance in our Midnight Movies series at the end of this month.
Village Voice Hires Scott Foundas
Lastly, today it was announced that the Village Voice has hired Film Society Associate Program Director Scott Foundas as their chief film critic, a position previously held by Andrew Sarris and more recently J. Hoberman. We here at the Film Society are sad to see Scott go, but cannot be more excited to read his work on a weekly basis. On the state of film criticism as he sees it, Scott offered: “People have been sounding the death knell for film criticism specifically, or print journalism in general, since I was first hired by the LA Weekly back in 2003… Here we are a decade later, and not only are The Weekly and The Voice still around, but I would say there’s very strong evidence that quality film criticism is alive and well.”