LOS ANGELES -- Everyone expected Steven Spielberg and his great film, "Schindler's List," to dominate the 66th annual Academy Awards here Monday night, and they did - with seven Oscars, including best picture and director. But there was no sense of anticlimax; it was one of the most thrilling nights in Oscar history. As academy members rose for two standing ovations, they were obviously moved by Spielberg's triumph.
For years, the word around Hollywood has been that Oscar voters have some kind of a grudge against Steven Spielberg. He makes good movies and he makes popular movies, and sometimes he makes both at the same time, but the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has never awarded its best director award to the most successful director in history.
"Schindler's List," the somber epic by Steven Spielberg about the Holocaust, won 12 Academy Award nominations, firmly establishing itself as the front-runner for this year's Oscars.
TELLURIDE, Colo. She has the face of an angel, and she plays roles from hell: That describes the acting career of Jennifer Jason Leigh, who was honored in a tribute here at the Telluride Film Festival.
TELLURIDE, Colo. -- The moment that best captured this year's Telluride Film Festival came when three musicians from Cambridge, Mass., were creating a percussion thunderstorm during a silent film from Germany, while a real thunderstorm boomed outside.
TELLURIDE, Colo. So here she was, a best-selling author who hardly ever goes to the movies, in the middle of a film festival and promoting a movie. Amy Tan confessed she was having a good time. The author of The Joy Luck Club, one of the most popular novels of recent years, was here for the premiere of the film version of her story.
TELLURIDE, Colo. -- The Telluride Film Festival, which honors three people with tributes every year, honored a missing person in 1984. The program was titled "Where Is John Alton?" and it showed clips from the work of one of Hollywood's greatest mystery men, a cinematographer who worked both sides of town - from low-budget film noir to an Academy Award for "An American in Paris" - before disappearing in 1960.
She sits on the balcony outside a hotel suite at the Cannes Film Festival and smokes a cigarette and looks very serious. I have met a lot of French actresses, and two things they are very good at is smoking cigarettes and looking serious. Not many of them look this good while they are doing it.
CANNES, France -- Bouncing along the Croisette, the seafront boulevard in Cannes, Allen and Albert Hughes are in a good mood. The twins are on their way to a panel discussion featuring the top independent American filmmakers at the film festival. Their first feature, "Menace II Society," plays here in a few days and will open all over America on May 28. Major studios are bidding for their next project. They have just turned 21.
Hollywood has been waiting a long time to give Clint Eastwood an Oscar, and my hunch is, the wait is over. Eastwood's "Unforgiven," an elegiac Western about a retired gunfighter who pulls himself together for one final campaign, will win the best picture award when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences gathers on the night of Monday, March 29.