1. “Jon Stewart Will Leave The Daily Show This Year.” And he let the news slip during a taping of yesterday’s show.
“Jon Stewart, the comedian who has become a highly influential figure in American politics, is leaving The Daily Show sometime this year. Stewart let the news slip during this evening’s taping of the show. Fittingly, The A.V. Club, a real-news spin-off of The Onion, first reported the news and Comedy Central confirmed it, saying Stewart would step down ’later this year.’ ’Jon has been at the heart of Comedy Central, championing and nurturing the best talent in the industry, in front of and behind the camera,’ Michele Ganeless, Comedy Central’s president, said in a statement. ’Through his unique voice and vision, The Daily Show has become a cultural touchstone for millions of fans and an unparalleled platform for political comedy that will endure for years to come. Jon will remain at the helm of The Daily Show until later this year. He is a comic genius, generous with his time and talent, and will always be a part of the Comedy Central family.”
2. “How Wes Anderson Cast The Grand Budapest Hotel.” An excerpt from Matt Zoller Seitz’s The Wes Anderson Collection: The Grand Budapest Hotel.
“I don’t necessarily see too much of a distinction between somebody who’s able to be funny and somebody who’s just able to be good. [Ralph Fiennes] is obviously one of these spectacular talents. I knew Ralph a little bit already, so when we were writing it, I was thinking of the real person, but from the very beginning of working on the story, Ralph was the person I thought ought to play it. You know, there’s another thing: People who act in movies aren’t necessarily that comfortable with paragraphs and paragraphs of dialogue. They aren’t necessarily people who are ready to give speeches in a long take without a cut. That isn’t necessarily the way movies are done, and that isn’t the way movie roles are generally written. I’ve never had a character who talks as much as M. Gustave. Well, none of that was going to be a problem for Ralph.”
3. “Berlinale 2015. Dialogues: Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups.” Daniel Kasman and Adam Cook tussle over the hottest ticket at Berlinale.
“I liked this movie quite a lot but I must return a statement back to you, ’it enables, I think, an empowering role for the spectator.’ I wonder if this is true? Someone after the screening compared the film to Jean-Luc Godard’s Adieu au langage, and I can see why, especially in that both Malick and Godard are rare montage artists, filmmakers working with creating meaning through editing. But Godard’s montage is, most often, a cerebral one: ideas created. Malick, I’m not so certain. Cutting from Christian Bale wandering in a hotel room to the camera pushing through the desert to Bale driving a car…if there are ideas in those edits they are very plain—journeys, doorways, horizons—very metaphoric and more sensual than cerebral. The impressionism of encountering a metaphor, perhaps.”
4. “An Exclusive Look at Sony’s Hacking Saga.” Vanity Fair’s Mark Seal speaks with Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg for an inside account of Hollywood caught in the crosshairs.
“For real-life North Korean children, a large number of whom live without electricity and are chronically hungry, the way out is through math and science, the better to become a North Korean cyber-warrior. The best and the brightest vie for admission to Mirim College, a military school that trains its students in computer sciences. Once students graduate from Mirim, they live in the capital city of Pyongyang, where they are allowed to bring their families, which is ’considered the ultimate privilege in North Korea, with better housing, better food, better health care, better everything,’ says Robert Collins, of the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea. The graduate is then prepared for one thing when it comes to the U.S.: ’Attack, attack, attack. When you say hacking, think about attacking. They want to bring down systems.’”
5. “David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson discuss the one movie everyone must see.” Sam Fragoso, for The Dissolve, speaks to the critics about Playtime.
“Theorist Noël Burch wrote that Playtime is the first film that one has to see more than once and, just as importantly, from different places in the theater. This is actually true, if you see it on the big screen. And this is the only way to see it, at least for a first viewing. Tati in fact shot it in 70mm, but usually these days people are lucky to see it in 35mm. We waited 25 years until we could attend a screening in the original 70mm, and it is overwhelming. Aside from his brilliance at staging simultaneous gags and forcing the spectator to be active in trying to notice them all, Tati has a command of sound, substituting slightly different sounds for the ones an object or person would actually make; this creates another source of humor. “
Video of the Day: Because one Pitch Perfect 2 trailer wasn’t enough:
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