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Steven Awalt

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  1. Thanks to everyone for such kind comments about SpielbergFilms here. Sorry if the site's closure comes as a disappointment, but thank you all for so many years of giving me the honor of your readership. On the positive side -- just in case you hadn't heard -- our forum is going to be staying after under the care of the community. I'll still be hanging out there as a fan, but won't be doing any more day-to-day administration. In that vein, the main site will still be closing down next Thursday, but I couldn't say no to the readers and forum members who hoped it could at least stay open. I owe an eternal thanks to Ricard and jwfan.com. Back when I launched SpielbergFilms in 2001, Ricard was the first publisher to give our site any attention. The seed of my readership was planted through jwfan, so I've always considered this place very special to me even if I haven't posted often over the years.
  2. I'm not sure who you're referring to as a stupid kid trying to get his name out there, but Johnston is in serious consideration for directing the picture, as per producer Frank Marshall himself. Marshall's worked with Steven Spielberg since the late 1970s, so I'd give him more credibility than you and your debunking of "rhumors." And no one ever said Spielberg's not coming back as producer. He's not coming back as director.
  3. #3 is actually very likely at the moment, actually. The film may start shooting this fall for a potential 2008 release date. #1 is not going to happen, according to Amblin, and I'd be surprised as heck is #2 were to happen. But the film is on its way to becoming a reality now!
  4. What ever made you assume Spielberg was going to direct the film? Nothing official ever led to that. And to the contrary, here's proof that he won't be back as director: http://spielbergfilms.com/jp4/18
  5. Old info, although it was right from Decca. They've since corrected (as has my site) with the official December 27th date. In a way, I'm kind of happy since I won't have the normal temptation to memorize the score before I see the film. Most everything about "Munich" should be very fresh when we see it.
  6. Speak for yourself, Alex! I'd say I'm definitely qualified to judge since I studying editing on everything I see. As much as I adore film music (and listen to it from the moment I wake to the moment I sleep), I'd hardly consider myself qualified to speak technically on what makes a good score. But editing I could blather on about for hours. Sadly, not many people care to hear about film editing...
  7. It should be said about the comments regarding Kahn and continuity that errors of this nature may not always be his fault. If Spielberg didn't get the raw material for Kahn to work with, then there's not a lot even the best editor can do. And you'd think it may sound blasphemous to think Spielberg wouldn't bring in solid footage for Kahn all the time, but there are some glaring instances. Look at the editing on the "shoot her" bit in the first few moment of "Jurassic Park." The screen direction is absolutely horrid when cutting between shots. I'm not sure if this is a case of Spielberg (and his continuity people) dropping the ball or a decision that was made, match cuts be damned, for effect, but it's one of the most technically unsound bits of editing in all of Spielberg/Kahn's work. Overall though, Kahn is as good as they come for my money. Looking at some of his work makes me absolutely giddy about how well he can dovetail images together. The collaboration between Kahn and Spielberg has given us some of the best examples of cinematic storytelling in film history. I think the Kahn/Spielberg collaboration is every bit as important as Williams and Spielberg's work together.
  8. I honestly didn't read through this whole thread, so if what I'm reporting on his old hat, please forgive me. To set everyone's minds at ease (besides perhaps Roald, who by the way I have to tell: Williams is indeed on "War of the Worlds," if you hadn't heard yet ), I talked with Marvin Levy from Amblin Entertainment tonight, and he told me that Mr. Williams is right on track as planned and scheduled with his score. A quote he gave was slanted by the L.A. Times and then outright twisted by the ever crappy Contact Music (why does anyone pay attention to this little gossip rag?) and now everyone thinks the "news" is gospel. But I'm here to tell you it's completely wrong and everything's pressing forward as planned. I can't tell you everything I know, but I can tell you that as John Williams fans, we all have absolutely nothing to worry about. I will say that some folk's lack of faith over the last year has been really disturbing though. Hasn't Williams earned all the respect he deserves without the media second-guessing the man's ability to deliver?
  9. Sorry, King Mark. I must've missed your original post.
  10. Haven't posted in forever, but I've always been a steady lurker... Here's some potentially good news: Of course it's not clear if the 70 extra minutes of unreleased music includes Williams compositions or not. Hopefully once the label gives more information this will become clear.
  11. This is the most asinine complaint I've heard yet in this argument. It's one thing not to be interested in "War," but to complain that Spielberg has lost "magic" because he hasn't produced a "hit" really makes your argument look horribly foolish. Who the hell cares if a film is a hit or not besides those who invested in it? None of Spielberg's recent films have lost money, not even "The Terminal" when you account for all of the subsidiary markets. But that's neither here nor there. A "hit" film doesn't mean a good film, and if that's your criteria in your argument why you think "War" will suck, then everyone who has responded (myself included) has wasted their time even bothering to respond. As for the equally odd complaint about the film taking place at night, there are obviously key sequences that take place both at night and in the day in the film. But why anyone would complain about a film, especially a horror film, taking place largely at night is beyond me. Are you afraid of the dark or something? It's such a strange thing to complain about. And Fiery Angel and publicist are right on. Spielberg's not the same director he used to be, and thank God for that, right? I'd much rather see him take a chance and make the occasional "Terminal" then live in a regressive state by once exciting directors like George Lucas. Lucas may make "hits," but he doesn't make films like Spielberg does then or now. Finally, I fear for the future of Pete Jackson's career. Someday, even if he's challenging himself as a director and his audiences as filmgoers, certain fans will disparage him when he stops making "hits," and they'll find another filmmaker to call the next Pete Jackson. May our recyclable heroes continue to keep us ensconced in a perpetual state of rehash, lest we will cast them to the rocks. :roll:
  12. It's all down to semantics, but Spielberg's sketches are not storyboards by definition. He draws out his idea in thumbnails or guides the sketch artists through his ideas verbally and they (being professional draftspersons) create what are technically the films storyboards. So I maintain that Spielberg isn't a storyboard artist, but the important point here is that he designs all of his shots.
  13. And the corpses in the swimming pool and in the house look a lot like the "Raiders" corpses since special effects artist Craig Reardon designed and constructed both sets of dead bodies.
  14. I mentioned Spielberg's having designed the shots above, so I'm certainly aware of it. But he did not personally storyboard the film in the sense that he didn't draft it by hand. He always sits with conceptual artists (who work from Spielberg's ideas and thumbnails) to get his visuals on to paper. But he did not draw any storyboards on "Poltergeist," "Jurassic Park" or any of his films. But the shot design is the point here, not who put pencil to paper. The conceptual artists are drawing at Spielberg's behest, so the shots are his. And just because a director doesn't operate the camera (Spielberg does some times), this doesn't make a shot any less his either. You can be sure Spielberg collaborates and listens to other's suggestions, but he does not give up the "visual directing" to any one. "Poltergeist" was Spielberg's picture before the screenplay (which he wrote and then had rewritten by another team of writers). It's his concept, and an important concept that has more roots in his own person than "Indiana Jones," "Jurassic Park," etc. The film is as personal as "Close Encounters" and "E.T.," since it stems from his own imagination wholly and has a lot of personal references to his childhood. This alone makes this a Spielberg film through and through.
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