Prieto to Make Feature Directorial Debut with the Revenge Thriller “Bastard”

Rodrigo Prieto is stepping into the director’s chair…

The 51-year-old Mexican cinematographer, who has worked on films such as Martin Scorcese’s Silence and Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain, will make his directorial debut with the revenge thriller Bastard.

Rodrigo Prieto

Based on an original script penned by Bill Gullo, Bastard is a taut revenge thriller with a riveting antagonist at its core, set against a looming flood that will ravage the small town of Bird’s Point, Missouri.

A Mexico-City native, Prieto started his career shooting television commercials at the age of 22 before moving into features in 1992. He broke out into the film scene with his work on Amores Perros, which kicked off his collaboration with director Alejandro González Iñárritu. Prieto boasts a top-notch list of film credits including Julie Taymor’s Frida; Curtis Hanson’s 8 Mile; Spike Lee’s 25th Hour; Iñárritu’s 21 Grams and Babel; Oliver Stone’s Alexander; Kevin Macdonald’s State of Play; Pedro Almodóvar’s Broken Embraces; Francis Laurence’s Water for Elephants; Cameron Crowe’s We Bought A Zoo; Lee’s Brokeback Mountain; Ben Affleck’s Argo; and a clutch of Scorcese titles.

He’s most recently worked on HBO series Vinyl and Silence, the latter of which saw him earn an Oscar nomination.

Prieto directed his first short film Likeness, starring Elle Fanning, which premiered at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.

Production is slated to begin in the first quarter of 2018.

Rodriguez to Sit Down with Barbra Streisand at the Tribeca Film Festival

Robert Rodriguez is ready to babble on with Babs

The 48-year-old Mexican American filmmaker will partner with Barbra Streisand for a special talk at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.

Robert Rodriguez

Streisand, an icon in multiple entertainment fields, will converse on her unparalleled career and force field of creativity with filmmaker Rodriguez, the mastermind behind such films as El Mariachi, Desperado and Once Upon a Time in Mexico, as part of the festival’s Tribeca Talks: Storytellers series.

Streisand has attained unprecedented achievements as a recording artist, actor, director, producer, concert performer, author and songwriter. Streisand has been awarded two Oscars, five Emmys, ten Golden Globes, eight Grammys plus two special Grammys, a special Tony Award in 1970, and two CableACE Awards – the only artist to receive honors in all of those fields of endeavor.

Rodriguez, a horror/cult movie maestro, will pose questions to Streisand on her storied career.

But he isn’t the only Latino taking part in this year’s Tribeca Talks…

Alejandro González Iñárritu will talk part in the Tribeca Talks: Director Series, a series of will “intimate talks and discussions.”

The Oscar-winning Mexican filmmaker, who directed Birdman and The Revenant, will discuss his own body of work.

The 2017 Tribeca Film Festival runs from April 19-30. Visit the festival’s website for more details.

Here’s more on the two Tribeca Talks:

Tribeca Talks: Directors Series
Today’s most groundbreaking filmmakers discuss their careers and highlights.

Alejandro González Iñárritu
Academy Award-winning filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu, one of only three directors to ever win consecutive Oscars and the first to do so in 65 years, will talk about his beautifully varied work on films such as Amores Perros, 21 Grams, Biutiful, Babel, and most recently, The Revenant. Iñárritu is the first Mexican filmmaker to have been nominated for Best Director and Best Producer in the history of the Academy Awards.
DATE: Saturday, April 22
TIME: 2:30PM

Tribeca Talks: Storytellers
Some of today’s most innovative creators broke from traditional roles and pioneered their own forms of storytelling, often mastering multiple mediums. This series will celebrate the illustrious careers of those individuals who have broken from the mold.

Barbra Streisand with Robert Rodriguez
Widely recognized as an icon in multiple entertainment fields, Barbra Streisand has attained unprecedented achievements as a recording artist, actor, director, producer, concert performer, author and songwriter. Streisand has been awarded two Oscars, five Emmys, ten Golden Globes, eight Grammys plus two special Grammys, a special Tony award in 1970, and two CableACE Awards – the only artist to receive honors in all of those fields of endeavor. She will converse on her unparalleled career and force field of creativity with filmmaker Robert Rodriguez.
DATE: Saturday, April 29
TIME: 6:00PM
LOCATION: BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center

Sanchez Earns World Soundtrack Awards Nomination for “Birdman”

He’s already the Critics’ Choice… But Antonio Sanchez may soon be the expert’s choice

The 43-year-old Mexican jazz drummer has been recognized by the World Soundtrack Academy with a nomination for this year’s World Soundtrack Awards.

Antonio Sanchez

Sanchez, who won his first-ever CriticsChoice Movie Award from the Broadcast Film Critics Association in January, is nominated in the Best Original Film Score of the Year category for his acclaimed work on Alejandro González Iñárritu‘s Birdman.

Sanchez, a multiple Grammy winner, will face off against Patrick Doyle’s Cinderella, Alexandre Desplat’s The Imitation Game, Hans Zimmer’s Intersellar and Johann Johannsson’s The Theory of Everything.

But Sanchez isn’t the only Latino nominee this year…

Gustavo Santaolalla received a nomination in the Best Original Song Written for a Film category.

The 63-year-old Argentine musician, film composer and producer, a two-time Academy Award winner, is nominated for writing the Diego Luna-performed “The Apology Song” from the Guillermo del Toro-produced The Book of Life.

Santaolalla, a two-time World Soundtrack Award receipient, previously won the Discovery of the Year award for 21 Grams in 2004 and the Public Choice Award for Brokeback Mountain in 2005.

The 15th annual World Soundtrack Awards will be the closing event of Film Fest Gent on October 24, 2015 in Ghent, Belgium.

The World Soundtrack Academy aims to support film music, sound design, composers and their worldwide promotion. In fifteen years time, the membership of the WSAcademy grew into a group of 370 international film (music) professionals deciding on the nominees for the annual World Soundtrack Awards through several rounds of voting.

Here’s a look at this year’s World Soundtrack Awards nominees:

Film Composer of the Year
Bruno Coulais ‘Song of the Sea’, ‘Gemma Bovary’, ‘3 hearts’ (‘3 Coeurs’), ‘Mune le guardien de la lune’, ‘Diary of a Chambermaid’ (‘Journal d’une femme de chambre’), ‘Fly Away Solo’
Alexandre Desplat ‘Unbroken’, ‘The Imitation Game’, ‘Everything Will Be Fine’, ‘Tale of Tales’
Michael Giacchino ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’, ‘Inside Out’, ‘Jupiter Ascending’, ‘Jurassic World’, ‘Tomorrowland’
Johann Johannsson ‘The Theory of Everything’, ‘The 11th Hour’, ‘Sicario’
Hans Zimmer ‘Interstellar’, ‘Chappie’

Best Original Film Score of The Year
‘Birdman: Or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)’ by Antonio Sanchez
‘Cinderella’ by Patrick Doyle
‘The Imitation Game’ by Alexandre Desplat
‘Interstellar’ by Hans Zimmer
‘The Theory of Everything’ by Johann Johannsson

Best Original Song Written For A Film
The Apology Song from ‘The Book of Life’: Music by Gustavo Santaolalla, lyrics by Paul Williams, performed by Diego Luna
Carry Me Home from ‘Insurgent’: Music & lyrics by Joseph Trapanese & Christopher Taylor, performed by SOHN
Glory from ‘Selma’: Music & lyrics by John Legend, Common and Rhymefest performed by Common & Legend
Grateful from ‘Beyond the Lights’: Music & lyrics by Diane Warren, performed by Rita Ora
Tell Me from ‘Lost River’: Music & lyrics by Johnny Jewel, performed by Saoirse Ronan

del Toro to Receive Heart of Sarajevo Award at the Sarajevo Film Festival

Benicio del Toro has a little extra heart…

The 48-year-old Puerto Rican actor, an Academy Award and Golden Globe winner, will receive the Heart of Sarajevo Award for his contribution to the art of cinema at this year’s Sarajevo Film Festival.

Benicio del Toro

Previous recipients for the award, which was designed by French designer, filmmaker and festival patron Agnes B, include Angelina Jolie, Gael Garcia Bernal and Steve Buscemi.

del Toro will present Fernando Leon de Aranoa’s drama A Perfect Day, in which he has a starring role alongside Tim Robbins and Olga Kurylenko, at the festival’s open-air screening venue, where del Toro will receive the award in front of a 3,000-strong crowd. The film premiered in Directors’ Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival.

The actor will also hold a master class for the participants of Talents Sarajevo, a networking and training platform for emerging film professionals from South-East Europe and the Southern Caucasus.

del Toro won an Academy Award for supporting actor for his role in Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic, and an Oscar nomination for his work in Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu’s 21 Grams.

Reteaming with Soderbergh to star in Che, the biography of Che Guevera, del Toro’s performance won him the best actor award at Cannes in 2008.

Del Toro can be seen next starring in Denis Villeneuve’s Sicario, alongside Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin, which is scheduled for a September 18 release by Lionsgate in the U.S.

LACMA to Honor González Iñárritu at This Year’s Art + Film Gala

Alejandro González Iñárritu is being feted for his “daring and nimble vision”…

The 51-year-old Oscar-winning Mexican filmmaker will be honored alongside light and space artist James Turrell at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s fifth Art + Film Gala on November 7.

Alejandro González Iñárritu

LACMA trustee Eva Chow and actor Leonardo DiCaprio will once again co-chair the annual fundraiser presented by Gucci.

“In only a few years, LACMA’s Art + Film Gala has established its reputation for honoring artists and filmmakers whose impact can be felt worldwide and that have particular relevance to Los Angeles, and James Turrell and Alejandro G. Inarritu certainly fit that bill,” said Michael Govan, LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg director, who further elaborated on the selections.

“In the last two decades, Inarritu has displayed a daring and nimble vision for films including Birdman and Babel; his work has rightly garnered the highest of critical acclaim.”

González Iñárritu won three golden statuettes as the 87th Academy Awards for Birdman, becoming the first-ever three-time Latino Oscar winner in history.

His five feature films – Amores perros (2000), 21 Grams (2003), Babel (2006), Biutiful (2010) and Birdman (2014) – have garnered wide acclaim.

Past honorees include Barbara Kruger, Quentin Tarantino, David HockneyMartin ScorseseEd Ruscha and Stanley Kubrick.

“The Art + Film Gala is now an annual highlight and brings together figures from the worlds of art, cinema, fashion and music to support the museum,” said longtime supporter and fashion designer Chow. “It’s a real honor and my pleasure to welcome two such unique and greatly talented artists whose work moves and inspires me deeply. And I am thrilled to co-chair this important fundraiser with Leonardo DiCaprio, whose support for this initiative is so critical.”

Funds from the Art + Film Gala support LACMA’s growing mission to make film a more prominent aspect of the museum’s programming, by way of exhibitions, educational sessions and screenings that explore how the film and art worlds converge.

del Toro to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award at San Sebastian International Film Festival

Benicio del Toro is about to add another award to his collection…

The 48-year-old Puerto Rican actor and film producer and Oscar-winner will receive the Donostia Award for Lifetime Achievement at the San Sebastian International Film Festival.

Benicio del Toro III

del Toro’s latest film Escobar: Paradise Lostwill close the Pearls Selection at the festival, which runs September 19-27.

Escobar, written by Andrea di Stefano, tells the story of young surfer Nick who thinks he has landed in paradise when he falls in love with a Colombian girl on a visit to see his brother who is living in the South American country only to have it change when he meets her uncle, Pablo Escobar.

del Toro has confirmed that he’ll come to San Sebastian to present the film and receive the Donostia at the closing ceremony. Di Stefano, Josh Hutcherson and Carlos Bardem will also be present for the film’s Spanish premiere.

del Toro is a favorite at San Sebastian where he has accompanied films from his career.

del Toro won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic as well as an Oscar nomination for his work in Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s 21 Grams.

del Toro re-teamed with Soderbergh to star in the biography of Che Guevera Che. The performance won him the Best Actor award at the Palme D’Or Closing Ceremony at the Cannes Film Festival in 2008, and again the following year at the Goya Awards in Madrid, Spain.

He starred opposite Emily Blunt and Anthony Hopkins in Joe Johnston’s The Wolfman and as Lado in Oliver Stone’s Savages.

del Toro was starred as Jimmy, the lead in Jimmy P. The film was screened at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. He was last seen in Guardians of the Galaxy a sci-fi action film for Walt Disney Pictures/Marvel Enterprises, which was released in the beginning of August 2014.

Next year he’ll play Mambru in Fernando Leon’s A Perfect Day and Sauncho Smilax in Inherent Vice, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson.

The actor is currently in production on Denis Villeneuve’s Sicaro.

Gonzalez Inarritu’s “Birdman” to Close the New York Film Festival

Alejandro González Iñárritu is bringing his bird to the Big Apple…

Birdman, a dramedy co-written and directed by the 50-year-old Mexican filmmaker, has been selected as the closing night film at this year’s New York Film Festival on October 12, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Alejandro González Iñárritu

The film, which is being distributed by Fox Searchlight and will be released in theaters on October 17, will have its world premiere on the opening night of the Venice Film Festival on Aug. 27.

Birdman stars Michael Keaton as a washed-up movie star trying to revive his career on Broadway. The cast also includes Emma Stone, Andrea Riseborough, Zach Galifianakis, Merritt Wever, Edward Norton, Amy Ryan and Naomi Watts.

Birdman

The film was lensed by Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki (Gravity), reportedly in a way that gives the appearance that the entire film is one continuous shot.

A González Iñárritu film closed the NYFF once before: 21 Grams screened in that slot in 2003. (The director’s first trip to the fest, though, was in 2000, with Amores Perros.)

International Trailer Released for González Iñárritu’s “Birdman”

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s ready give audiences the bird(man)

Fox Searchlight has released the international trailer for the 50-year-old Mexican filmmaker’s black comedy Birdman, which will have its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival.

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman

Michael Keaton leads the ensemble cast that includes Edward Norton, Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, Zach Galifianakis, Amy Ryan and Andrea Riseborough.

He portrays an actor, famous for having portrayed an iconic superhero, who struggles to mount a Broadway play.

Birdman

Birdman marks a big departure from González Iñárritu’s more gritty and dramatic fare, including Babel, 21 Grams and Biutiful.

“It’s inventive and light” and full of surprises, says one of the film’s critics.

González Iñárritu’s Black Comedy “Birdman” to be Released in October

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s next project will be migrating to theaters in October…

Fox Searchlight co-president Stephen Gilula has announced that the 50-year-old Mexican filmmaker’s Birdman will open in theaters on Friday, October 17.

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman

The film isn’t expected to complete post-production until late May or early June, with producers it eyeing fall festivals for its premiere.

It’s González Iñárritu’s first black comedy, following the Academy Award-nominated director’s dramatic films Amores perros (2000), 21 Grams (2003), Babel (2006) and Biutiful.

“It’s the heart of the fall, and a great time historically for us with films like Sideways, 12 Years A Slave, and historically Slumdog Millionaire and Black Swan,” Gilula tells Deadline.com. “We’ve had great success launching films at festivals, but this hasn’t been screened for anyone, despite the speculation. Alejandro is famous for his meticulous work in post-production, and this film is unusual for him in that is has some visual effects, and an unusual sound design. The most important thing is to make sure that the film is right.”

The film has an all-star cast that includes Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone and his muse Naomi Watts, who appeared in the director’s Babel and 21 Grams.

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman

Keaton plays a washed up actor who once played an iconic superhero who tries to mount a stage play despite his dysfunction and the dysfunction of others in his repertoire.

Inarritu wrote the film with Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. and Armando Bo.

González Iñárritu Reportedly In Talks to Direct “The Jungle Book”

It appears Alejandro González Iñárritu may be booking a trip to the jungle for his next project…

Warner Bros. is reportedly in early talks with the 50-year-old Mexican filmmaker to direct The Jungle Book, a new version of the popular Rudyard Kipling novel about an orphaned boy raised in the wilderness by animals, according to Deadline.com.

Alejandro González Iñárritu

The project is one of the studio’s top priorities, with a script by Callie Kloves, daughter of Harry Potter series scribe Steve Kloves, who is producing the film.

Bur this isn’t the only Jungle Book project in the works…

Disney is pursuing its own live action version of The Jungle Book, recently hiring Elf and Iron Man helmer Jon Favreau to direct the film.

The book is public domain, but as usual the first one to make it into production usually becomes the Tarzan of the jungle.

After several serious dramas including Amores perros, Babel and 21 Grams, Iñárritu recently took on a comedy for his most recent film Birdman, which is wrapping up now.

He’s also attached to the New Regency 1820s frontier revenge tale The Revenant.