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Rushes. R.I.P. Jonas Mekas, Shyamalan’s Resurgence, New Trailers

This week’s essential news, articles, sounds, videos and more from the film world.
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Jonas Mekas (1922 — 2019)
  • "I have never been able, really, to figure out where my life begins and where it ends. I have never, never been able to figure it all out, what's all about." We're sad to say that Jonas Mekas, considered the "godfather of avant-garde cinema," has passed away today at the age of 96. The Lithuanian filmmaker leaves behind a legacy of film criticism, programming, and lovingly, meticulously crafted cinema, often confronting and splicing through his own biography as a refugee and artist. In April of last year, Mekas was "rediscovering Virginia Woolf," and working on a compilation of 50 years' worth of diaries. After a number of health scares in the summer, he informed The New York Times that death is a "normal transition [...] It’s where the mystery begins, where it becomes interesting."
  • Yes, the Oscar nominations are finally here, with both surprising and sadly unsurprising sweeps all around.
  • We reported earlier that the controversial film-sans-television project (and social experiment) Dau, by Ilya Khrzhanovskiy, is finally complete. The event, described now as an "experience," is set to premiere on January 24 in Paris, running non-stop until February 17.
  • After last year's pulpy Unsane and the interactive cinema app Mosaic, Steven Soderbergh returns with a new trailer for High Flying Bird, which ventures into the inner world of the basketball industry.
  • The winner of Cannes Critics' Week Grand Prize—the pitch perfect satire Diamantino gets a sparkling new trailer. We interviewed the directing duo Gabriel Abrantes and Daniel Schmidt at last years' Cannes Film Festival.
  • Yann Gonzalez boldly queers the giallo film in his ecstatic sophomore feature Knife + Heart. Here's the new trailer:
  • Iconic American auteur Gregg Araki is back with another queer, apocalyptic comedy—this time in the form of a series entitled Now Apocalypse for STARZ.
  • M. Night Shyamalan: Maligned genius? It may be more likely than you think. Justine Smith writes that Shyamalan distinguishes himself by "[portraying] trauma as the root for dangerous and destructive behaviour." Adam Gaines also points out that Shyamalan's admirable "resurgence" is entirely self-financed by his loans and earnings.
  • The Atlantic has released a long brewing piece regarding Bohemian Rhapsody director Bryan Singer—surfacing new accusations from alleged victims as well as linking the allegations to alarming themes in Singer's filmography.
  • Vincente Minelli's Tea and Sympathy, and its still-resonant "expression of outsiderness" is the latest subject of Michael Koresky's Queer & Now & Then column.
  • Behold, Joseph Egan's thoroughly-researched website dedicated to Orson Welles's 1942 The Magnificent Ambersons, which includes the film's final shooting script and storyboards.
  • Once the "ultimate prize" of Hollywood, Paramount Pictures faces millions of dollars in losses, forcing the studio to ask a number of "uncomfortable questions" for the future.
  • Kelley Dong kicks off a new column on children’s cinema, and the relationship between art’s abstractions and cognitive development.
  • A new retrospective on the career of Elaine May sheds light on the ways her "female lens [observes] how male characters see the women in their lives."
  • Jordan Cronk reviews Music From The Films Of Bertrand Bonello, which provides an overview of the "rich matrix of sonic markers" that define Bonello's filmography.
  • In an extensive thread on Twitter, Rooney Elmi looks back at the definitive music videos of 2018, particularly those directed by women directors for women musicians.
  • An adorable poster announced for Stephen Chow's upcoming The New King Of Comedy!
  • Finally: the first poster of Harmony Korine's long awaited Spring Breakers follow-up, The Beach Bum.

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