24 Frames

Movies: Past, present and future

Category: MTV Movie Awards

Obama campaign ad to air during MTV Movie Awards

June 1, 2012 |  3:00 pm

Sarah Jessica Parker in Obama ad

The Obama campaign's first national TV ad will air Sunday during the MTV Movie Awards in a sign that campaign strategists see the youth vote as crucial to his winning reelection in November.

In the 30-second ad, "Sex and the City" star Sarah Jessica Parker will describe her reasons for supporting Obama, citing his role in ending the war in Iraq and his job creation record, and inviting the audience to enter a raffle to attend a fundraiser with the president at her New York City home June 14.

The core demographic for MTV's awards show — which will feature appearances by young celebrities such as Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, Emma Stone, Mila Kunis and Andrew Garfield — is viewers ages 18 to 24, a group that helped propel Obama to victory in 2008.

A spokesman for MTV said the network is also talking to Mitt Romney's campaign about future advertising.

The president's reelection campaign has been increasingly relying on entertainment outlets to reach the youth audience. Obama appeared on "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" in April, for instance, to talk about student loans and to "slow jam" the news.

The event at Parker's home will follow the model of the president's fundraiser at George Clooney's Studio City home May 10, which raised nearly $15 million, largely from a similar online contest.

Vogue editor Anna Wintour, who is jointly hosting the Parker event, appeared in a campaign ad released Friday urging audiences to enter the raffle, which ends Monday, June 4. "Please join us," Wintour said, "but just don't be late."


Sarah Jessica Parker to host Obama fundraiser

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George Clooney's Obama fundraiser uses star power with a twist

— Rebecca Keegan


Photo: Sarah Jessica Parker. Credit: Kirsty Wigglesworth/Associated Press.

MTV Movie Awards wants to tap next Christopher Nolan

April 27, 2012 |  7:00 am

NEW YORK -- Over its 20-year history, the MTV Movie Awards haven't exactly been the Oscars, or even the People's Choice Awards.

But the telecast known for handing out prizes for such Brando-esque acting feats as “Best Kiss” while playing clips from countless summer movies wants to get more serious.

Well, slightly.

"We want the show to be a little more of  a celebration of why we love movies," MTV President Stephen Friedman said in an interview at his offices this week, noting that he felt the program, for all its fan enthusiasm, was sometimes too irreverent toward the filmmaking process, undercutting the point of a movie-awards show in the first place. "We want people to feel the same sense of awe watching our show like they did the first time they saw 'Harry Potter' or ‘Hunger Games' on the big screen."

(Oddly, the tack follows a similar shift at the Oscars, which under the hand of producer Brian Grazer and host Billy Crystal this year went in a more magic-of-Hollywood direction, to mixed reviews.)

For its 20012 edition, the MTV Movie Awards have brought on Jesse Ignjatovic, the reality/live-event producer who has been shepherding the network's Video Music Awards. We’ll see his handiwork fairly soon — this year's show airs live on June 3 from the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City.

The awards have long endured the criticism that they are little more than a commercial for studios’ summer movies, whose clips come fast and furious. Friedman  said that he could imagine that this year's show will feature fewer plugs for upcoming films by making sure that those that were featured were “really special” pieces of material that viewers couldn’t see anywhere else.

And though the Movie Awards added a few new categories this year, including “best on-screen dirtbag” (now there’s something Brando-esque), they also will hand out a breakthrough performance prize. Unlike the show's many viewer-voted categories, however, this one will be chosen by a panel of filmmakers, ensuring that (for now, at least) Kristen Stewart will not win her 1,325th MTV Movie Award.

Friedman said that the larger mission is to restore a sense of relevance and tastemaking to the program.

“If you look back, this show was among the first places to tell you about Christopher Nolan when he had ‘Memento,’ just as MTV is the first place to tell viewers about a new band that they need to know,” Friedman said. “We really want to go back to doing that.”


Photo Gallery: Best and Worst at the MTV Movie Awards

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Do any summer releases actually get a boost from the MTV Movie Awards?

--Steven Zeitchik


Photo: Lindsay Lohan, Verne Troyer and Sean Combs at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards. Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

'Super 8' star: Steven Spielberg offered me some good life advice [Video]

June 6, 2011 |  2:18 pm

From Drew Barrymore to Shia LaBeouf, Steven Spielberg has a long history of mentoring child actors. He continued that practice on the set of "Super 8," the J.J. Abrams-directed sci-fi drama he produced that hits theaters Friday.

Set in the 1970s, the film centers on a group of young friends with an affinity for moviemaking who witness a train crash while shooting their own picture. All of the kids cast in the movie -- with the exception of Elle Fanning -- were novices, which means the experience of promoting the movie has been a new one for the ensemble. Spielberg and Abrams, though, have been serving as advisors throughout the process.

At the MTV Movie Awards, Joel Courtney, the film's 15-year-old lead, looked oddly formal, decked out in a suit while others around him sported leather jackets, Ed Hardy T-shirts and Converse sneakers. "I really didn't care what I wore. But J.J. wanted me to wear this," he said in a video interview (check out the full clip below, and others after the jump). "I hope I get advice from him for the rest of my life. He's such a cool guy."

Asked what counsel he'd received from Abrams and Spielberg, Courtney ticked off their words of wisdom as though it was a series of mantras. "They told me not to get a big head. Not get entitled. Stay humble. Remember who you are. Stay in school. Keep a social life so your friends can keep you, like, down to earth."

On that note, Courtney could take a page from costar Fanning, 13, who has managed to juggle a burgeoning acting career while still in junior high. "I go to a regular school, so when I'm not doing movies, I'm in class, and when I am doing movies, I have to do all the tests, all the schoolwork, everything my classmates are doing so I can keep up," she said.

Abrams was more ... general when asked how he shepherded a group of young 'uns. "I'm happy to help them however they need help," the filmmaker said vaguely.

Continue reading »

'Harry Potter' star Tom Felton sees a connection between his franchise and 'Hunger Games' [Video]

June 6, 2011 |  1:14 pm

In a little more than a month, the eighth and final installment in the "Harry Potter" film series will hit theaters. Tweens seeking a new obession of course shouldn't be too distraught -- there are still two films left in the "Twilight" franchise, and Lionsgate is already in production on the first film based on "The Hunger Games" trilogy.

Tom Felton, who has starred as the evil Draco Malfoy in the "Harry Potter" franchise, told 24 Frames that he believes the boy wizard has a lot to do with the onslaught of genre-tinged tween cinema. "I think ['Harry Potter'] certainly helped" pave the way for movies such as "Hunger Games," Felton said at the MTV Movie Awards on Sunday, where he was on hand to present new footage from "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2."

"I think one of the great things about what ["Harry Potter" book author] Jo Rowling has done is she's made literacy and reading kind of cool again. And that allows the way for lots of these other franchises to kind of come through," he said.

Even though production wrapped long ago on the final film in the Potter franchise, Felton said he still doesn't feel like the experience is over. "It really hasn't ended at all. Everyone keeps saying, 'What's it like, now that it's finished?' And to me, it really hasn't," he said. "Because we've got another month of touring starting next week, I think."

"Obviously, yeah, it's going to be very sad when it's over. I'll probably cry in copious amounts when it's all finished," he said.

Meanwhile, Felton is working out his post-"Potter" career. His first major role outside of the franchise will come in this summer's "Rise of the Planet of the Apes." Asked if he felt pressure about choosing roles as an adult actor, Felton shrugged.

"Some people think there is [pressure], yeah," said the actor, who was convinced to be a part of "Apes" after meeting with director Rupert Wyatt. "But we're just keeping our ears open and eyes to the ground and seeing what happens, really."

Also unclear is where he'll put that lovely gold popcorn statuette he took home Sunday night at the MTV Movie Awards for playing the villainous Malfoy. "The other one [I won] is still boxed up because I don't have a good place to put it yet. I'm saving it. I don't want to put it on the downstairs toilet."

-- Amy Kaufman



Are the MTV Movie Awards self-defeating?

June 7, 2010 |  9:51 am

Last year we wondered whether the predictable populism of the MTV Movie Awards signaled a dark future for the Oscars, what with the latter show feeling the ratings heat and doubling its best-picture nominees. It hasn't (so far), but after Tivo-ing our way through this year's Summit-sponsored "Twilight" commercial -- er, MTV Movie Awards -- we can't help wondering something else: if the show fails even on its own blatantly commercial terms.

Sure, there will always be a YouTube-able moment or two, and the frequent swearing and requisite same-sex kisses (Jonah Hill and Russell Brand, Scarlett Johansson and Sandra Bullock), will keep the Parents Television Council busy for a while. And the revival of Les Grossman, as out of left field as it is, probably will achieve its not-so-hidden goal of unleavening Tom Cruise's image just as he gets set to release a big summer action comedy.

Yet at a certain point it's worth asking what all the shameless plugs and "Twilight" self-congratulation really achieves. We ask this not from a cultural standpont -- though, given how MTV once defined youth culture instead of merely holding up a mirror to it, there's a question to be asked there too -- but in regard to the show's own goals.

The more craven bits, far from selling the films, often just drew attention to how creatively bankrupt they really are. Is someone actually more likely to see "Grown-Ups" after watching Sandler, Spade et al. trot out their lukewarm shtick? (If they are, it's only because an hour later they saw Will Ferrell's "Other Guys" shtick and realized it could be worse.)

Last year, the show flogged such summer hopefuls as "Bruno" and "Land of the Lost," and we saw how much that helped. For all the unabashed marketing, the MTV Movie Awards doesn't seem to get many people to talk about movies. It's probably not an accident that the biggest conversation piece from last night wasn't about a film but about the frequent swearing.

When they weren't failing movies that may be doomed anyway, the plugs were redundant. There's probably no person whopping and hollering at the relentless "Twilight" nods and teases who wouldn't have seen "Eclipse" anyway. (And if MTV and/or studios are trying to show that the next generation is ready for their awards-show moment, they may want to try something else, unless you go for Kristen Stewart acceptance-speech gems like this one: "I guess I agree with you. Twilight is awesome. Woo.")

The few films that could benefit from a boost are the ones least likely to get it. You can almost sense Steve Carell's and Paul Rudd's reluctance at having to turn up to present so younger people will pay attention to "Dinner for Schmucks." They did put on their best game face, but a teen stampede to the box-office we will probably not see as a result of their appearance.

The Academy has long resisted turning it into a plug-fest for movies currently in theaters, for reasons of artistic integrity. But they may be doing those movies a favor. Even typical awards-show sentimentality -- like when Ken Jeong mentioned from the podium that his wife had survived breast cancer -- came off awkwardly.

The one moment that felt uncontrived and in the spirit of MTV's leading-not-following roots was when Rain won the Biggest Bad [Guy] award for "Ninja Assassin" over MTV perennials like Sam Worthington and Angelina Jolie. It passed quickly and unremarkably.

There's no ethical issue in making an awards show a celebration of commerce instead of art. (The Golden Globes does it pretty much every year.) But once you've decided you're going to turn a kudos program into a commercial bazaar, you may want to do a better job selling.

-- Steven Zeitchik


Photo: Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner at the 2010 MTV Movie Awards. Credit: Christopher Polk / Getty Images

2010 MTV Movie Awards: Director Todd Phillips talks 'Hangover' sequel (VIDEO)

June 7, 2010 |  6:26 am

It's hard to believe it's been a year since "The Hangover" premiered in theaters -- and at the MTV Movie Awards on Sunday, director Todd Phillips already was talking about the comedy's sequel.

"We start shooting in the middle of October, and it's coming along great," said the director, dressed in an all-white ensemble. "There's no real movement except we're doing it."

In the meantime, Phillips and cast members such as Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms all keep in touch, the director said.

"Yeah, we've become really close," he said. "We've all gone through this together."

-- Amy Kaufman (Twitter.com/AmyKinLA)

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2010 MTV Movie Awards: Diddy shows off his grill, gives us some love (VIDEO)

June 6, 2010 |  8:50 pm



We recently spent some time with Sean "Diddy" Combs" when we interviewed him about his new role in "Get Him to the Greek," where he plays a zany, maniacal record executive. Apparently Diddy was a fan of the story, because he came over and plopped a wet one right on our cheek in the middle of the red carpet at the MTV Movie Awards -- so pardon the sloppy camerawork here!

More important, he showed off his bright gold grill. So why the new teeth bling?

"I have the No. 1 comedy in the world, and my teeth turned to gold!"

-- Amy Kaufman

2010 MTV Movie Awards: Jason Segel 'proud' of 'Get Him to the Greek' (VIDEO)

June 6, 2010 |  8:30 pm

Jason Segal When Jason Segel came down the red carpet at this year's MTV Movie Awards, we weren't sure what to ask him about first. The man's been keeping busy: In addition to his role on "How I Met Your Mother," he'll voice a character in this summer's "Despicable Me" and will co-star in the Jack Black comedy "Gulliver's Travels" later this year.

So how does he spend his coveted down time?

"I just sleep, mostly," he told us on the red carpet.

We were also, of course, curious about his thoughts on "Get Him to the Greek," which was directed by his buddy Nicholas Stoller, who also worked on Segel's "Forgetting Sarah Marshall."

"It's very exciting, they've been working hard on that. I'm just so proud of everyone involved," the very-tall Segel said. "Nick was at the helm of it, but I wrote some of the music and helped produce it a bit. But between Jonah and Russell and Nick, they didn't need much help."

-- Amy Kaufman


Photo: Jason Segel arrives at the MTV Movie Awards. Credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Clicking on Green Links will take you to a third-party e-commerce site. These sites are not operated by the Los Angeles Times. The Times Editorial staff is not involved in any way with Green Links or with these third-party sites.

2010 MTV Movie Awards: Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan talk 'The Karate Kid' (VIDEO)

June 6, 2010 |  8:29 pm

Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith Monday evening marks the premiere of the new "The Karate Kid," and the film's stars, Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan, told us they're ready for the movie to hit theaters.

"It's gonna be great," said Will Smith's son, who was wearing a studded jacket bearing the movie's symbol.

And how was it working with the legendary Chan?

"Oh, it was great. He's a great person, and he's a little bit weird," Smith joked. "His hair doesn't move."

-- Amy Kaufman

Photo: Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith. Credit: Mike Nelson / EPA

Rob Pattinson's thunderous MTV promo

June 2, 2010 | 12:03 pm

Finally, a Rob Pattinson appearance that shows flair and wit. Also, an MTV Movie Awards that this year (might) contain same. Click here or on the photo below (warning: some profanity within) for the latest video teaser for the upcoming show, in all its Tom Cruise/Les Grossman glory . Because it's never too late to reference a comedy cameo from 2008.


Photo: Tom Cruise as Les Grossman. Credit: MTV


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