Beverly Hills, CA -- The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that 15 films in the Documentary Feature category will advance in the voting process for the 83rd Academy Awards®. One hundred-one pictures had originally qualified in the category.

The 15 films are listed below in alphabetical order by title, with their production company:

* "Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer" Alex Gibney, director (ES Productions LLC)
* "Enemies of the People" Rob Lemkin and Thet Sambath, directors (Old Street Films)
* "Exit through the Gift Shop" Banksy, director (Paranoid Pictures)
* "Gasland" Josh Fox, director (Gasland Productions, LLC)
* "Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould" Michele Hozer and Peter Raymont, directors
(White Pine Pictures)
* "Inside Job" Charles Ferguson, director (Representational Pictures)
* "The Lottery" Madeleine Sackler, director (Great Curve Films)
* "Precious Life" Shlomi Eldar, director (Origami Productions) "Megamind"
* "Quest for Honor" Mary Ann Smothers Bruni, director (Smothers Bruni Productions)
* "Restrepo" Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger, directors (Outpost Films)
* "This Way of Life" Thomas Burstyn, director (Cloud South Films)
* "The Tillman Story" Amir Bar-Lev, director (Passion Pictures/Axis Films)
* "Waiting for ‘Superman" Davis Guggenheim, director (Electric Kinney Films)
* "Waste Land" Lucy Walker, director (Almega Projects)
* "William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe" Emily Kunstler and Sarah Kunstler, directors (Disturbing the Universe LLC)

The Documentary Branch Screening Committee viewed all the eligible documentaries for the preliminary round of voting. Documentary Branch members will now select the five nominees from among the 15 titles on the shortlist.

The 83rd Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 25, 2011, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

 

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Los Angeles, CA -- November 18, 2010 - Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. and IMAX Corporation (Nasdaq: IMAX; TSX: IMX) today announced that Academy Award® winner Morgan Freeman will narrate "Born to be Wild 3D". The latest IMAX® 3D film is scheduled for release to IMAX® theatres starting April 8, 2011. Born to be Wild 3D combines breathtaking IMAX 3D footage of the remote rainforests of Indonesia and the vast deserts of Africa, in an intimate and uplifting tale of how the power of love can give orphaned baby orangutans and elephants a second chance at life in the wild.

"I feel immensely privileged as a filmmaker that someone of Morgan's stature is involved in this project," said "Born to be Wild 3D" writer/producer Drew Fellman. "His extraordinary voice will profoundly elevate this touching tale of the bond between humans and animals."

"It's a tremendous honor to have Morgan lend his talents to this powerful IMAX film," added Greg Foster, Chairman and President, IMAX Filmed Entertainment. "Mr. Freeman's incredible voice informs the story in a remarkable way and is an ideal fit for this important and heartwarming journey. His ability to connect with moviegoers of all ages in an emotionally moving manner will complement the stunning images of the film and ultimately enhance the immersive power of The IMAX 3D Experience®."

"We are so excited that we are afforded the opportunity to further our professional relationship with Morgan," said Dan Fellman, President of Domestic Distribution for Warner Bros. Pictures. "He is one of the most recognizable and respected talents in entertainment today and his distinctive voice will command the attention of audiences as they follow the real-life adventures of these animals."

Morgan Freeman most recently earned an Academy Award® nomination for his leading role as Nelson Mandela in Clint Eastwood's acclaimed drama "Invictus." His numerous honors include four Academy Award® nominations, taking home the Oscar® for his work in "Million Dollar Baby," as well as four Golden Globe nominations, with a win in 1990 for his performance in "Driving Miss Daisy." Freeman's myriad additional credits include the award-winning films "The Dark Knight," "The Shawshank Redemption" and "Unforgiven," and he also narrated the Oscar®-winning documentary "March of the Penguins." He can currently be seen in the action comedy "Red," and will soon star in "Dolphin Tale," to be released by Warner Bros. Pictures in 2011.

"Born to be Wild 3D" is an inspired story of love, dedication and the remarkable bond between humans and animals. This film documents orphaned orangutans and elephants and the extraordinary people who rescue and raise them-saving endangered species one life at a time. Stunningly captured in IMAX 3D, "Born to be Wild 3D" is a heartwarming adventure transporting moviegoers into the lush rainforests of Borneo with world-renowned primatologist Dr. Birute Galdikas, and across the rugged Kenyan savannah with celebrated elephant authority Dame Daphne Sheldrick, as they and their team rescue, rehabilitate and return these incredible animals back to the wild.

The film's trailer will make its online debut today on Apple.com and its in-theatre debut the following day in IMAX theatres with "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1". More information about the film can be found at www.imax.com/borntobewild.

"Born to be Wild 3D" is an IMAX and Warner Bros. Pictures production. The film is directed by David Lickley, written and produced by Drew Fellman with cinematography by David Douglas.

 

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WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee today unanimously approved legislation to provide the Justice Department with new tools to crack down on the theft and distribution of illegal digital movies, television shows and other counterfeit material by rogue websites on the Internet. The following is a statement by Bob Pisano, President and Interim CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA):

"These rogue sites exist for one purpose only: to make a profit using the Internet to distribute the stolen and counterfeited goods and ideas of others. The economic impact of these activities-millions of lost jobs and dollars-is profound. That's why dozens of labor organizations and businesses groups have come together to support the bill approved today by the Judiciary Committee.

As part of a wide ranging coalition of workers and businesses whose jobs and financial health have been placed at risk by content theft, we commend Senators Patrick Leahy and Orrin Hatch for their leadership on this bill. We look forward to working with them and the other cosponsors of the legislation, along with their colleagues in the House to help the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act become law.

The film and television industry alone is responsible for more than 2.4 million hard working, middle-class jobs in all 50 states. For these workers and their families, digital theft means declining incomes, lost jobs and reduced health and retirement benefits. Unfortunately, this means nothing to the operators of rogue websites who seek to benefit illegally from the hard work of others.

The operators of these sites use a variety of means to facilitate their goals - advertising, rentals, sales and charges for premium services. They are commonly assisted-sometimes unwittingly-- by American companies whose ads are placed on the sites by brokers. They are also often aided by enterprises that provide the financial services for their schemes.

As Sen. Leahy has noted, these are the ‘worst of the worst' online websites. The operators of these sites knowingly break the law, harm the American economy, deprive American intellectual property owners of their rights, cost American jobs and, in the case of counterfeit prescription drugs, potentially threaten the health and welfare of American consumers.

It will take a strong, sustained effort to stop Internet thieves and profiteers. We believe that Congress and the Administration can make a significant contribution to that effort by turning the Leahy-Hatch bill into law and giving law enforcement significantly enhanced tools for addressing a threat that deprives American innovators of the fruits of their labors and menaces our nation's economic health."

Background:

The Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act will provide the Department of Justice with tools to track and shut down websites devoted to providing access to unauthorized downloads, streaming, or sale of copyrighted content and counterfeit goods. It will:

• Give the Department of Justice an expedited process for cracking down on websites that are dedicated to making infringing goods and services available;
• Authorize the Department of Justice to file an in rem civil action against a domain name, and seek a preliminary order from the court that the domain name is being used to traffic infringing material. The Department must publish notice of the action promptly after filing, and it would have to meet clear criteria that focus on the sites' substantial and repeated role in online piracy or counterfeiting;
• Provide safeguards allowing the domain name owner or site operator to petition the court to lift the order;
• Provide safeguards against abuse by allowing only the Justice Department to initiate an action, and by giving a federal court the final say about whether a particular site would be cut off from supportive services.

 

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Regal Entertainment Group (NYSE: RGC), a leading motion picture exhibitor owning and operating the largest theatre circuit in the United States, announces the addition of a Fruit, Nut & Snack Pack to the list of snack options available at movie theatres in California, Florida, New York and the Pacific Northwest.

The Fruit, Nut & Snack Pack comes in a convenient carton with individual bags for almonds, pretzels and raisins. Each bag is sealed for freshness. Adding nuts and raisins to Regal's food selection is an example of the company's responsiveness to customer suggestions. Through focus groups and patron comments this combination of almonds, pretzels and raisins was identified as a snack food choice preferred by many moviegoers.

"Regal Entertainment Group is pleased to introduce this new snack option at many of our theatres across the country," stated Dick Westerling, Senior Vice President of Marketing & Advertising for Regal Entertainment Group. "The ingredients in this snack pack were selected based on research and guest comments. Regal is pleased to add this item to complement our other popular movie snacks that are available."

 

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LOS ANGELES, CA -- In response to the ratings given to two of its upcoming films, The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today that it has engaged a formidable legal team to challenge the NC-17 rating for BLUE VALENTINE and the R rating for THE KING'S SPEECH given by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), according to TWC Co-Chair Harvey Weinstein.

"While we respect the MPAA, I think we can all agree that we are living with an outdated ratings system that gives torture porn, horror and ultraviolent films the same rating as films with so-called inappropriate language," explains Weinstein.

In mounting the challenge, TWC has assembled a team of top attorneys including David Boies, who serves as legal advisor on both films, Bert Fields, who is overseeing the appeal for THE KING'S SPEECH, and Alan R. Friedman, the lead attorney for BLUE VALENTINE.

THE KING'S SPEECH drew an R rating due to its multiple occurrences of strong language, even though it is used in a non-aggressive, non-sexual, therapeutic way. Director Tom Hooper states, "I hope that language can be judged by its context just as violence is currently judged in context. The f-word in ‘The King's Speech' is not being used in its sexual sense, or in its aggressive sense, but as a release mechanism to help a man overcome a stammer in the context of speech therapy, in a scene that is also very funny. This was a technique that David Seidler, the writer, encountered as a boy in the 1940s - discovering he didn't stammer on curse words was hugely helpful to him overcoming his speech problems. Fortunately in the UK we have been granted a 12A, and the on screen certificate will explain that there is some bad language "used in the context of speech therapy". I hope that in the light of this context the R rating for the movie can be reconsidered."

Prompted by the decision from the British Board of Film Classification to lower the rating of THE KING'S SPEECH to 12A, the equivalent of our PG-13, and to use the specific warning: "Contains strong language in a speech therapist context," as well as the outcry from parents, teens and educators who have already seen the film, TWC has requested what is referred to as a Special Hearing with the MPAA. The Special Hearing is necessary because the film is now within 25 business days of its theatrical release. "We were so encouraged by the British Film Board's decision to lower the rating in England that it motivated us to fully support the Special Hearing that TWC has requested. We feel that school kids in America would otherwise miss out on the opportunity to see this film which at its core is a film about overcoming adversity, based on moral themes of friendship and self belief," comments Iain Canning.

Not only has the film received support from filmgoers, but also from a chorus of key journalists, including Patrick Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times, Dave Karger of Entertainment Weekly, and countless other editors and writers. The other motivation for proceeding with the 11th-hour appeal is in response to audiences who believe the current powder-keg issue of childhood bullying, and its effects long into adulthood, subtlety illustrated in the film, should reach pre-teen and teenage viewers.

Attorney Fields adds, "This rating for THE KING'S SPEECH is arbitrary and irrational. In my view, it violates The Weinstein Company's right to freedom of speech under the state and US constitution. It should strike fear in the heart of every director and producer."

BLUE VALENTINE, starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams, in a film already acclaimed by critics, tells the honest and personal story of a troubled marriage, and yet apparently drew an NC-17 due to one scene, a sexually intimate sequence between a married couple trying to repair their broken relationship.

Gosling comments, "You have to question a cinematic culture which preaches artistic expression, and yet would support a decision that is clearly a product of a patriarchy-dominant society, which tries to control how women are depicted on screen. The MPAA is okay supporting scenes that portray women in scenarios of sexual torture and violence for entertainment purposes, but they are trying to force us to look away from a scene that shows a woman in a sexual scenario, which is both complicit and complex. It's misogynistic in nature to try and control a woman's sexual presentation of self. I consider this an issue that is bigger than this film."

"The MPAA's decision on Blue Valentine unmasks a taboo in our culture, that an honest portrayal of a relationship is more threatening than a sensationalized one," says Williams. "Mainstream films often depict sex and violence in a manner that is disturbing and very far from reality. Yet, the MPAA regularly awards these films with a more audience friendly rating, enabling our culture's desensitization to violence, rape, torture and brutality. Our film does not depict any of these attributes. It's simply a candid look at the difficulties couples face in sustaining their relationships over time. Blue Valentine opens a door for couples to have a dialogue about the everyday realities of many relationships. This film was made in the spirit of love, honesty and intimacy. I hope that the MPAA will hear our pleas and reconsider their decision."

In order to appeal, TWC is forced to accept the NC-17 rating for now, the first step in the appeals process. Initially TWC sought to go outside of the ratings board, and release the film unrated, however in the last 10 days so much support of the film has been garnered that TWC has decided to move forward with an official MPAA appeal. "Over the past year I have witnessed audiences all over the world personally relating to the story and characters, so brilliantly and bravely performed by Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams" states director, Derek Cianfrance. He adds, "The one positive to come out of this miss-directed decision, is the passionate outpouring of support from the industry, the media, and the fans of the film. I have yet to meet someone who has seen the film who agrees with this ultra-conservative decision."

"Stamping this film with the rarely used NC-17 is a travesty," says attorney Friedman. "That rating is out of sync with R ratings awarded to films for sexual conduct, where the scenes in question are far less sensitively handled. The scene, consistent with the entire film, like all of BLUE VALENTINE, was shot with great care and tact. In fact, the NC-17 suggests a coarseness of content that is nowhere to be seen. I look forward to providing the appeal board with the chance to correct this mistake by lowering the rating to an R."

As both films are slated for an end of the year release and are considered by many to be leading awards contenders, TWC hopes to come to a resolution on an expedited timetable.

THE KING'S SPEECH, starring Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, and Helena Bonham Carter is directed by Tom Hooper, written by David Seidler and produced by Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, will have an exclusive Thanksgiving release.

BLUE VALENTINE, directed by Derek Cianfrance, produced by Jamie Patricof, Lynette Howell and Alex Orlovsky, will be released on December 31 and expands nationwide January 2011.

 

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