Thursday, January 27, 2022

"Don't Look Up" receives guild nominations

Don't Look Up scored nominations today from the Writers Guild of America for Best Original Screenplay, and from the Producers Guild of America for Best Picture. This news bodes very well for its chances for getting screenplay and best picture nods at the Academy Awards. Director Adam McKay was unfortunately left off the list with the Director's Guild. Good showing otherwise. 

Oscar nominations will come out a week from Tuesday (Feb 8), with PGA winners announced on March 19, and WGA on March 20. 

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Poll #13: Whom would you like to next see Meryl portray in a biopic?

Whenever we're in a sort of lull in casting news for Meryl, I tend to ruminate on possibilities of what might come. As Meryl approaches her 73rd birthday this summer, the options for roles, much less lead roles, are growing slimmer and slimmer. So often biopics don't portray people primarily in their old(er) age. But I suspect there are a handful of reasonable prospects our there still. I'm going to offer a few suggestions below and hope folks will feel right to add any I haven't listed or thought of. I'm purposely leaving Lilly Ledbetter, Diana Nyad and Golda Meir off the list, since pics of them have already been recently cast with other actors. 

Source material in general for meaty Streep roles is the key to us seeing her in good stuff and working with great directors. I've recently added a few novels to my to-read list with female protagonists over 60, which after reading I plan to comment on the blog about whether I think they'd be good fits for Meryl, were they adapted to the screen. Maybe Meryl will read my posts and snatch up the rights to one of them before Frances McDormand can swoop in and win her fourth (acting) Oscar it. 

Then there's always original screenplays. Like Places, Please. I still think it's weird how completely absent any talk of that project has been since it was first announced almost a year ago now. Hopefully we get some news about what next soon. Of course I'm also curious to learn exactly what Meryl's role will end up being in Extrapolations. Until then, fire away at the biopic role poll.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

"Don't Look Up" poised to be most-watched Netflix film of all-time

Don't Look Up broke a Netflix record last week with the highest number of viewing hours in a single week. After another 28 million this week, its total hovers around 250 million hours. Red Notice (with Ryan Reynolds, Gal Gadot and Dwayne Johnson) currently holds the record for most view hours in its first 28 days, with 364.4 million. If Don't Look Up can sneak out another 15 million view hours by Friday, it will break the record, which seems pretty likely at this point.  

Great milestone for this picture! Even though Meryl's not getting much, if any, individual attention for her role, I enjoy seeing the film doing well with audiences. BAFTA nominations will be announced two weeks from tomorrow and Oscar noms only five days after that!

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Cast of "Don't Look Up" earns SAG nomination

The Screen Actors Guild announced their nominations for film and television this morning. While Don't Look Up was left out of any individual noms, the cast cracked the top five for outstanding cast in a motion picture. Meryl is included in that of course, which, according to Deadline, is her (own) record-breaking 17th nomination in a feature film. 

I'm not super shocked that there were no individual nominees form the film. I thought Leo might sneak into the top five, but it's a stacked year for Best Actor, and we still may end up seeing him get recognized by the Academy. 

A few surprises:

The most glaring was the absence of Kristen Stewart for her performance in Spencer (not may favorite). Jennifer Hudson was a surprise in this category for Respect. I was similarly surprised to see Cate Blanchett get nommed in supporting in Nightmare Alley over Aunjanue Ellis in King Richard. Although I still fully expect to see Ellis up for an Oscar. Jean Smart showed up in Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Movie, but I have to remember that they don't have supporting distinctions in these TV categories. Still, I wasn't expecting to see her, but much-deserved. The men of Belfast were shut out, as was the cast for The Power of the Dog. This last one is perhaps the most shocking, considering it's a leading contender for Best Picture, and all three main cast member were nominated today! How does it miss?! 

Loving all the love for Succession, Ted Lasso, and Mare of Easttown. 

The SAG awards will be simulcast on TNT and TBS on Sunday, February 27. 

Monday, January 10, 2022

Streep to be in only one episode of "Extrapolations"?

Thanks to a tweet from Jamie Michael Rogers, I was alerted to the fact today that IMDb only has Meryl's name linked to one episode of the upcoming limited series, Extrapolations for Apple TV+. I wasn't sure if this really meant anything, but when I look at the rest of the cast's bios, their names are all linked to the full set of eight episodes in the series. Seems strange that only Meryl's would be different, unless it's simply the case that she's only going to be in one episode. 

Being that hers is the only character for whom they've never given any information, I've wondered for  while if ultimately she was going to have a rather minor role. Seems like that might be the case if this info turns out to be true. It's certainly possible we're reading too much into things. But it would kind of make sense, considering they've apparently been filming for over a month, and Meryl's been busy with press for Don't Look Up (which by the way was shut out at the Golden Globes last night). 

Extrapolations may just turn out to be something Meryl joined more for the message than the work. 

Friday, January 7, 2022

"Don't Look Up" breaks weekly viewing record

Multiple sources have reported that Don't Look Up set a new record on Netflix for most-watched film in one week (and currently at #3 all-time views). This is not an insignificant feat, considering the reactions to the film have been so polarizing. But I suppose that's what helps get people to tune see what all the fuss is about!  

While I'm not obsessed with viewership for Meryl's films, these days part of my enjoyment of her films making good bank (even though this movie was barely in theaters) is that, in my perhaps my naive mind, she remains a commercial draw for her future films to ultimately find funding. That might be an overreaction, but I'm paranoid that with Meryl not exactly being a spring chicken that a sting of bad films will make it tougher for her films to get the green light. That was such a specific boon following the success of The Devil Wears Prada that I remember reading how Meryl was "besieged" with offers after that. Let's hope we get some similar effects from this one (even if to a lesser degree).  

I can't help but wish we could get a reasonable estimate on how much the views on Netflix would turn out to be at the box office. I'm so much more attuned to what that would mean when comparing to other successful films. 

In other news, the Golden Globes will not be livestreaming their awards this Sunday. Instead, sort of like other critics bodies do, they'll post their winners in "real time" on their website an social media. Fine by me, I guess. Although I would like to see them return to a live show next year and they can convince everyone that they're not a total and complete mess. 

Sunday, January 2, 2022

What's in store for 2022?

Happy New Year! As 2021 came to a close, people can't stop talking about Don't Look Up and the film is a big hit for Netflix. It's nice to see that although there were a lot of people who didn't like it, there are a lot of people who do, and it has sparked quite a bit of attention and discussion. It'll be fun to see how it fares in the upcoming months of awards season. SAG nominations come out on the 12th, and I think the cast has a decent shot at an ensemble nod. 

Beyond that, the Apple TV+ limited series Extrapolations is apparently already shooting (or maybe is done shooting?). There is still zero information on what Meryl's role is going to be, but it'd be nice if it were substantial in size. Tough to predict when we'll get to see this show, but I'm guessing it'll be the second half of this year, most likely fourth quarter. 

And speaking of zero information, that's what we've had about Places, Please since it was announced almost a year ago now that Meryl would be starring in it. I'm sure it's still possible that they'll pull it together. In fact, it seems the type of movie that wouldn't need a lot of time in post, so could reasonably shoot this spring and be released by the end of the year. By the way she and the would-be director, Michael Cristofer, were interviewed about it at the time of the announcement, it seemed like a pretty sure thing. There was obviously a director attached, they had producers (including Meryl, which is rare), and they apparently had a shooting start date planned for summer. Then it was radio silence. Considering that Cristofer has described the role of Lillian Hall as "extraordinary," I hope we get to see Meryl in this. 

How about beyond that? There are no new projects that have been revealed which Streep is expected to do. She's likely going to tie her longest streak of not being nominated for an Oscar this year (unless by some miracle she sneaks in for Don't Look Up). We know we'll continue to see her in stuff, but leading roles in things that aren't crap and going to be increasingly difficult to come by. Maybe we will see her producing more in order to ensure she's getting to play things she finds interesting and challenging.

Regardless of what's next, I look forward to a handful of meaty dramas. She's great in comedy of course, but my favorite Meryl is when she's in the deep stuff, which she hasn't done a ton of in recent years. Again the roles have to be there. But knowing that just within the next year we're going to see three biopics alone from women in her age demographic (Helen Mirren as Golda Meir, Patricia Clarkson as Lilly Ledbetter, and Annette Bening as Diana Nyad), it's not like these types of films aren't getting made. I love a good biopic, and it has been four years since she's been in in on (The Post). But I hope her next big role that garners a lot of attention and praise is for an original character. Maybe Places, Please will end up being that one.