My Special Interview with Cinema Legend Max Von Sydow for "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" 

The legendary actor, Max von Sydow, is thrilled to receive a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his portrayal of the mysterious The Renter in “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close.” This is the second Oscar nomination for the 82 year-old actor. He previously received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for his role of Lassefar in 1987’s “Pelle the Conqueror.”

In “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close,” von Sydow’s character is truly one of the most memorable aspects of the 9/11-themed movie. In this interview, the actor talks about his nomination, the movie, and answers the question – what makes him tick?

Q: First of all, it’s such a pleasure talking to you, an icon and a cinema legend, so thank you so much.

A: Thank you Manny.

Q: Congratulations on “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close,” not only is it one of the Best Picture nominees, you also received a Best Supporting Actor nomination. How does it feel receiving a second Oscar nomination?

A: Oh I think it was wonderful. My wife saw it on the internet one afternoon and told me. We had a glass of champagne together.

Q: 9/11 will forever shape America and the world. Was this the attraction for you in making the movie?

A: It was very inspiring. I think it’s a wonderful story, I was really moved by it when I read it. My wife and I we always work together, we always read the scripts together. And we were so moved by the story of “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close” and I knew immediately that I wanted to do the movie and my character of The Renter.

Q: You’re absolutely right, The Renter is one of the most memorable characters in the movie, what attracted you to that role?

A: Well he’s a remarkable man I think, and also, he has secrets which make him more exciting and more interesting. He has not had a very easy life, he’s had shocking experiences, and ends up looking for something from his background and finds this boy who allows him to tag along in his search for something that his father has left for him to explore and to develop. These two very odd couple together make for a very positive story, a very inspiring story too. To me, the film, of course, it deals with catastrophe, it deals with a lot of pain, but it’s also a story about hope, about love.

Q: And the people’s will to survive.

A: Yes!

Q: The character of The Renter is like the movie “The Artist,” it’s silent but brilliant. How did you prepare for the role?

A: Well I prepared like how I always do, reading the script many times and finding out what this character wants to do with this life and why does he appear in the story. When I know what my character wants to do and how he relates to other characters that’s when the emotions, the feelings come in. And of course, Stephen Daldry is a wonderful director, very inspiring. And I have done a lot of theater in my earlier life and Daldry has done a lot of theater too. And I think we have an understanding immediately on what we want to do with this character. It was a pleasure, really a lot of fun to do. And of course the boy, Thomas Horn is brilliant; he’s a very intelligent young man.

Q: You have a lot of followers here in Palm Springs, have you ever visited the Coachella valley?

A: I have been there once a long, long time ago. It must have been in the late 60s. I went there after a film opening in New York. It must have been very hectic because I went to Palm Springs to find solace.

Q: You’re due for another visit soon.

A: Okay (laughs), let me see what I can do about it.

Q: From “The Seventh Seal” to “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close,” you are a true cinematic legend. What makes Max Von Sydow tick?

A: Life should be beautiful for everybody but unfortunately, life is not fair to everyone. But it is a matter of making life as good as you can for yourself and for those close to you. And if everyone wants to do that, it will be a lot easier to live on this Earth. But when it comes to my profession, good offers make me tick.

Q: Once again, congratulations on your Oscar nomination, certainly something to be thankful for right?

A: Well, I have a very good life I must say, a good acting life. And I have a lot of fun and am very grateful. I’ve been lucky enough to have good opportunities because that is really what it’s all about.

"Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" starring Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock, Thomas Horn, Max von Sydow, Viola Davis, and John Goodman is currently playing in theaters.

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"Wolverine" Sequel Gets New Release Date! 

Save the date Wolverine fans, you'll soon be able to see the sequel on July 23, 2013. That's about a year and a half from now. And that should give Hugh Jackman and director, James Mangold, plenty of time to give us a fantastic sequel, right?

The planned sequel was mired with production dramas, but as the Hollywood Reporter revealed, Fox is now making this production a priority by setting the release date. It's almost like a deadline. Make it on the release date or else!

The only thing we know for certain about the "Wolverine" sequel is the story is set in Japan. And we also know that the release date puts the Marvel flick head-to-head with Lionsgate's "Dirty Dancing" remake from director Kenny Ortega. "Wolverine 2" will also duke it out with the big-screen version of Disney's "Phineas and Ferb."

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"This Means War" Delayed, Gets New Release Date! 

Fox has delayed the opening of the new romantic action comedy "This Means War" Deadline is exclusively reporting. Starring Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, and Tom Hardy, "This Means War" was supposed to open on Valentine's Day aka Feb. 14th but will now be released on Friday, February 17th. Apparently, Fox could not match the buzz of the Channing Tatum-Rachel McAdams starrer "The Vow." The studio will sneak "This Means War" on Tuesday and will hope and pray that word of mouth will help the film when it opens that Friday. Not a good sign!

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Behold "The Amazing Spider-Man" Trailer! 

Maybe just like you, I was doubting the impact of this new "Spider-Man." For one, the past "Spider-Man" trilogy from Sam Raimi and starring Tobey Maguire was just a few years back and still fresh from our memories. But the new franchise director, Marc Webb, is a good storyteller (I admire his "500 Days of Summer") so this new reimagining of "Spider-Man" may be good.

Plus, the trailer is quite intriguing although it reeks of psychological neuroses. But we love our superheroes with issues, case in point, Batman and his "Dark Knight" franchise. This new "Spider-Man" has father issues, identity issues, and perhaps girl issues with the lovely and amazing Emma Stone (Gwen Stacy) playing the love interest of Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield).

Completing the cast is Rhys Ifans (The Lizard), Sally Field (Aunt May), Martin Sheen (Uncle Ben), and Denis Leary as Captain George Stacy. "The Amazing Spider-Man" crawls into theaters July 3rd, just in time for your Fourth of July celebration!

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Milla Jovovich to Host Academy's Sci-Tech Awards 

Milla Jovovich is set to host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Scientific and Technical Awards on Saturday, February 11. The "Fifth Element" and "Resident Evil" franchise star will present 10 awards to 30 individual recipients during the evening (full list below).

Jovovich will next be seen in "Resident Evil: Retribution."

Portions of the sci-tech awards will be included at the Oscars and will be presented on Sunday, February 26.

And here's the list of Academy Awards for scientific and technical achievements (Source:

Technical Achievement Award (Academy Certificate)

To Andrew Clinton and Mark Elendt for the invention and integration of micro-voxels in the Mantra software.

This work allowed, for the first time, unified and efficient rendering of volumetric effects such as smoke and clouds, together with other computer graphics objects, in a micro-polygon imaging pipeline.

Scientific and Engineering Award (Academy Plaque)

To Radu Corlan, Andy Jantzen, Petru Pop and Richard Toftness for the design and engineering of the Phantom family of high-speed cameras for motion picture production.

The Phantom family of high-speed digital cameras, including the Phantom Flex and HD Gold, provide imagery at speeds and efficacy surpassing photochemical technology, while seamlessly intercutting with conventional film production.

To Dr. Jürgen Noffke for the optical design and Uwe Weber for the mechanical design of the ARRI Zeiss Master Prime Lenses for motion picture photography.

The Master Primes have achieved a full stop advance in speed over existing lenses, while maintaining state-of-the-art optical quality. This lens family was also the first to eliminate the magnification change that accompanied extreme focus shifts.

To Michael Lewis, Greg Marsden, Raigo Alas and Michael Vellekoop for the concept, design and implementation of the Pictorvision Eclipse, an electronically stabilized aerial camera platform.

The Pictorvision Eclipse system allows cinematographers to capture aerial footage at faster flying speeds with aggressive platform maneuvering.

To E.F. “Bob” Nettmann for the concept and system architecture, Michael Sayovitz for the electronic packaging and integration, Brad Fritzel for the electronic engineering, and Fred Miller for the mechanical engineering of the Stab-C Classic, Super-G and Stab-C Compact stabilizing heads.

This versatile family of 5-axis camera and lens stabilizers allows any standard motion picture camera to be fitted into the open architecture of the structure. The system can be quickly balanced and made ready for shooting platforms such as helicopters, boats, camera cars or cranes.

To John D. Lowry, Ian Cavén, Ian Godin, Kimball Thurston and Tim Connolly for the development of a unique and efficient system for the reduction of noise and other artifacts, thereby providing high-quality images required by the filmmaking process.

The “Lowry Process” uses advanced GPU-accelerated, motion estimation-based image processing tools to enhance image quality.

To FUJIFILM Corporation, Hideyuki Shirai, Dr. Katsuhisa Oozeki and Hiroshi Hirano for the design and development of the FUJIFILM black and white recording film ETERNA-RDS 4791 for use in the archival preservation of film and digital images.

Specifically designed for laser film recording and widely used in the industry today, the high-resolution FUJIFILM ETERNA-RDS 4791 film stock is an important step in protecting the heritage of the motion picture industry.

Academy Award of Merit® (Oscar® Statuette)

To Franz Kraus, Johannes Steurer and Wolfgang Riedel for the design and development of the ARRILASER Film Recorder.

The ARRILASER film recorder demonstrates a high level of engineering resulting in a compact, user-friendly, low-maintenance device, while at the same time maintaining outstanding speed, exposure ratings and image quality.

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