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Category: Daniel Craig

Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman Broadway bound in new play

May 28, 2009 | 10:41 am

Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman are coming to Broadway this fall in Keith Huff's award-winning play "A Steady Rain." While the limited run of this acting showcase is sure to sell out, will this two-hander win over the notoriously feisty Gotham critics? For its original 2007 run in Chicago, the production won Joseph Jefferson Awards (the second city's equivalent of the Tony Awards) for best play at a midsize theater, best new work and best lead actor.

Hugh Jackman Daniel Craig Broadway A Steady Rain It is easy to understand why "A Steady Rain" would appeal to Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig. The two characters in the play are one-time best friends who served together on the Chicago police force. Over the course of 90 minutes, they relive the police call that tore them apart — a domestic dispute that culminated in the death of a young boy. For the Aussie and the Brit, it will be a chance to prove they can play Americans.

The only other time Hugh Jackman headlined on Broadway, he won a Tony for his efforts. In the 2004 tuner "The Boy From Oz," he played camp Aussie singer-songwriter Peter Allen. Onstage for almost the entire show, Jackman was a force of nature. Offstage he charmed the theater community and hosted the Tony Awards for three years running, even winning a 2005 Emmy Awardfor his 2004 appearance. He was nominated again in 2006 for emceeing the 2005 Tonycast, but lost the prize for best individual performance in a variety, musical or comedy program to Barry Manilow.

Since finishing up that year-long run on the rialto, Jackman has enjoyed only mixed success in movies. While his work as comic book character come to life Wolverine still wows audiences, his more mainstream leading-man roles have missed the mark. Last year, he starred in the barely released "Deception" and the disappointing epic "Australia." Success on stage this fall could get him seen in a new light by movie producers.

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'Quantum of Solace' is in the running for several Oscars

November 17, 2008 | 11:27 am

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After shattering U.S. box-office records this weekend ($70 million) and hauling in $322 million worldwide, "Quantum of Solace" has proven itself to be a winner. That's key in order to advance in the Oscars derby.

But what races does "Quantum of Solace" have a chance in? Over several decades the 21 previous films in the James Bond franchise have managed only seven nominations and two wins (sound for "Goldfinger" and visual effects for "Thunderball").

"Quantum of Solace" is actively running "For Your Consideration" ads for these races: best picture, director (Marc Forster), screenplay (Paul Haggis, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade), actor (Daniel Craig), art direction, costumes, makeup, music score (David Arnold), cinematography (Robert Schaefer), film editing (Matt Chesse, Richard Pearson), sound mixing, sound editing and song ("Another Way to Die"). It only has a shot at noms for cinematography, film editing, song and — maybe, in a loooooongshot — the two sound races.

No James Bond tune has ever won best song and two of the most famous — those Shirley Bassey belters "Goldfinger" and "Diamonds are Forever" — weren't even nominated. Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die" made the cut, but lost to Marvin Hamlisch's "The Way We Were." Afterward, Bond producers hired Hamlisch to write a title tune for "The Spy Who Loved Me," but "Nobody Does It Better" (sung by Carly Simon) lost to "You Light Up My Life" (Debbie Boone).

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No 'Quantum of Solace' for Bond filmmakers, say reviews

November 5, 2008 | 12:05 pm

Despite mixed notices, the new James Bond film "Quantum of Solace" is breaking box-office records in Britain. However, the first stateside review for this 22nd entry in the franchise predicts producers will be shaken and audiences unstirred when the movie opens here Nov. 14. Indeed, Derek Elley of Variety thought the film -- the first direct sequel in the series' 45-year history -- "plays like an extended footnote to 'Casino Royale.'"

Two years ago, that film relaunched the character with a new actor, Daniel Craig, who won over audiences and critics alike. Indeed, "Casino Royale" was the most successful Bond film to date, grossing almost $600 million worldwide and coming in at 95 on Rotten Tomatoes and 81 at Meta Critic. It earned a record nine BAFTA nods, including a nom for Craig and a bid for best British film — Craig lost to eventual Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, whose film, "The Last King of Scotland," also prevailed. Despite this success, "Casino Royale" was ignored by the major American awards. Of course, to be snubbed by the Oscars was nothing new for Bond. Even after 21 movies, the franchise has managed only seven nods and two wins (sound for "Goldfinger" and visual effects for "Thunderball").

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And although Golden Globe- and DGA-nominated director Marc Forster ("Finding Neverland") helms this new film, its awards potential is slight at best. As per Elley, "From the grittier lensing by Forster regular Roberto Schaefer, through the distractingly antsy editing by Matt Chesse and Richard Pearson, to the close-up second-unit work by Dan Bradley, 'Quantum' has a generic, in-your-face functionality and a restlessness that just wants to push the movie on to the next chase/shootout/slugfest, rather than, in the traditional Bond way, relishing the spaces in between." Although Forster did not get an Oscar nod for "Neverland," Chesse did, and Pearson was nommed for "United 93."

Though Craig is credited with delivering as strong a performance as possible given the weak plot, his hopes for kudos this year lie with "Defiance," which closes out the AFI filmfest this weekend. Craig plays one of three Jewish Polish brothers (alongside Liev Schreiber and Jamie Bell) fighting with the Russian resistance in World War II. Writer-director Edward Zwick has proven adept at bringing epic stories to the screen ("Blood Diamond," "Glory") and getting his actors Oscar nods -- Leonardo DiCaprio ("Blood Diamond") -- if not wins -- Denzel Washington ("Glory"). With Craig looking less studly and more stolid, he could make it into the final five. Even in recent times, WWII-era dramas have garnered lots of Oscar gold with wins for Adrien Brody ("The Pianist") and Roberto Benigni ("Life is Beautiful"), and a nod for Tom Hanks ("Saving Private Ryan").

Perhaps the element of "Quantum of Solace" that has the best chance at awards glory is the theme tune -- "Another Way to Die" -- penned by rocker Jack White, who duets with Alicia Keys. Originally, Amy Winehouse was to record a song in the style of original Bond diva Shirley Bassey, but that fell by the wayside because of the Grammy champ's personal struggles. Surprisingly, neither of Bassey's big Bond hits -- "Goldfinger" and "Diamonds are Forever" -- earned an Oscar nod.

It would take former Beatle Paul McCartney and his 1973 title track for "Live and Let Die" to get any respect from the music branch of the academy. After this lost to "The Way We Were," the Bond producers signed up that song's composer, Marvin Hamlisch, to handle music duties on "The Spy Who Loved Me" in 1977. Although he got a nod for the song "Nobody Does It Better" (sung by Carly Simon), it lost to "You Light Up My Life," and his score was bested by "Star Wars."

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Oscars sneak peek: Daniel Craig in 'Defiance'

October 15, 2008 |  1:05 pm

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Anne Thompson of Variety.com has posted the new trailer for "Defiance" from director Edward Zwick that's due out this December. It's the tale of three Jewish brothers (Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber, Jamie Bell) who fight back against Nazis from a Russian rebel base they set up in the Belarussian forest.

Zwick's flicks have been players at past Oscars, but none has yet landed in the best pic slot. All Oscarologists know how much the academy loves Holocaust pix, so this might get there.

Zwick's "Blood Diamond" was nominated for five Oscars in 2006, including best actor (Leo DiCaprio) and supporting actor (Djimon Hounsou).

"The Last Samurai" was up for four, including best supporting actor (Ken Watanabe) in 2003. He was also nommed at the Globes, along with lead star Tom Cruise.

"Glory" (1989) was up for five Oscars and won three: supporting actor (Denzel Washington), sound and cinematography.

(Paramount Vantage)


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