Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Twelve Years a Slave Takes Top Golden Globe Award and Receives Nine Oscar Award Nominations

Twelve Years a Slave

The quite amazing story about how an old, nearly forgotten book becomes a star-casted movie with Oscar potential continues to unfold when Twelve Years a Slave took the Golden Globe for Best Drama, organized by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. 

In the meanwhile, this movie has also received nine Academy Award nominations including best picture, best actor in a leading and supporting role, best actress in a supporting role, and best director. The Oscars will be presented on March 2, 2014.

Read this insightful interview in The Sydney Morning Herald with director Steve McQueen, who moved from Ghana to England, now lives in Amsterdam and was once called by his school teachers not to amount to anything and is now a Oscar contender. McQueen says this in his interview:

"It's no different," McQueen says. "Making a film is like writing a novel – you're telling a story – whereas art is more like poetry: fractured and compressed. It's a bigger process and of course, with film, more people are involved and it may take 10 months to make rather than the moment it takes to make a brushstroke. But when I think about it, it feels the same."

The interview continues:

' Of course the recognition is thrilling; McQueen said he was "exhilarated and ecstatic" about those nine Oscar nominations. But big films – and 12 Years a Slave, for all that it cost barely £10 million ($19 million) and was shot with one camera in 35 days, is a big film – also get picked apart in a big way. For a start, there is the film's brutality. The unwavering stare of McQueen's long takes levelled upon beatings and lynchings has proved too much for some audiences. But how could a film about slavery be anything but painfully violent?

McQueen says he simply followed Northup's book. "Reading it was like revelation after revelation," he says. "Everything is from the memoir; nothing is taken for granted and every behaviour is documented."

That's another objection: that 12 Years a Slave catalogues and condemns the sins of a past era, rather than addressing the muddier and more conflicted sins of the present. McQueen dismisses this with his customary abruptness. "The point is that it is happening now," he says. "I listened to a lady in Kenya who had been in the same circumstances: seduced by a work offer in Dubai, she went there, had her passport taken, was subjected to this terrible ordeal, locked up at night; she escaped in Los Angeles. The past is absolutely about the present for me."

Cosimo is proud to have released the original edition both in a jacketed hard cover and an affordable paperback both with a beautiful cover illustration from the original book. However many Oscars this movie may receive, it doesn't happen often that movie and book are both worth the experience. I wholeheartedly recommend watching the movie and reading the book.

The Cosimo editions are available from many leading online stores, such as Barnes & Noble in hardcover and paperback.

And Amazon - also in hardcover and paperback -:

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