Monthly Archives: November 2012

The Recording Academy® Statement Re: Deborah Raffin

GRAMMY® Award winner Deborah Raffin was a great talent and a gifted spirit. The Recording Academy® Los Angeles Chapter was proud to have Raffin as a Board member to work with our membership and ensure musicians’ interests were always met. She had a successful career with her audio book company bringing books to life through spoken word. We have suffered a dear loss and our condolences go out to her friends, family and fans.

Neil Portnow
The Recording Academy

A Christmas Story 2: Official Sequel Review


If you’re a fan of “A Christmas Story”, well… You’ve got to watch this one right?

While many may disagree, I loved it! … WHAT?! Are you kidding me? … No, actually I’m not. Though skeptical as I settled in to watch this official sequel, I found it to be a nice tribute to the original.

The cast is new but appropriate and Daniel Stern as Ralphie’s dad, adds a fun holiday classic feel to the film.

A Christmas Story 2 builds on the things we loved the original for… storyline, narration, setting, and though there’s no competition between the two, lovers of classic holiday movies will enjoy this film.

Love it or hate it, if you watch it, leave your comments below!

Watch the Trailer:

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The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Pt. 2 Review


I’ve struggled with writing this review, simply because I seem to be stuck on the “edge of my seat” fight scene. While the movie starts off a bit slow and unadventurous, loose ends are tied up, making it an awesome finale.

Bella is captivating as a vampire and discovers her strength isn’t the only thing that makes her unique; she has quite a gift. Powerful and protective, Bella shows Edward what he’s longed to see and she learns that Jacob isn’t going anywhere.

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Help Our Troops Call Home

Watch the Official Trailer for World War Z Starring Brad Pitt!

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Kelleigh Bannen never made the trek to Nashville — she was already there. Born and raised in Music City, she was singing and writing songs when she was 2 years old. Well, actually, as she notes in her self-written bio, “it was a little song with two lines that I would sing to myself inspired by the ‘word of the day’ from ‘Sesame Street.’”

Safe to say, at least, that her ears were wide open at an early age, taking in music beyond the Country playlist and kiddie show themes to include Frank Sinatra, Patty Griffin and other eclectic performers. However, Country proved to be her true calling, so after graduating from college in Virginia, she hastened back home to develop her writing and discover her own sound as a singer.

That sound shines on her upcoming debut album, produced by Paul Worley and Jerry Smith and set to release on EMI Records Nashville. Written by Bannen and Troy Johnson, its first single, “Sorry on the Rocks,” recounts a relationship melting down, like ice in an untended glass past last call. Bannen’s strong, assertive vocals underscore the clever metaphor that flows through each verse and chorus.

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Doug Cooper, Paul Debevec, Ray Feeney, Josh Pines, David Stump, Steve Sullivan, Bill Taylor and Beverly Wood have accepted invitations to join the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, bringing the Council’s 2012–2013 membership roster to 25.

Doug Cooper is a visual effects supervisor at DreamWorks Animation whose credits include “Shrek Forever After,” “Bee Movie” and “Shark Tale.” He has been a member of the Academy’s Short Films and Feature Animation Branch since 2008.

Paul Debevec is currently the associate director for graphics research at the University of Southern California’s Institute for Creative Technologies, a research professor at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering Computer Science, and the chief scientific consultant at Light Stage, LLC. In 2009 he received a Scientific and Engineering Award for the Light Stage capture devices and the image-based rendering system for character relighting. Debevec, whose work has been seen in such films as “Avatar” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” has been a member of the Visual Effects Branch since 2010.

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Tumblr Sends Artists and Fans Head over Heels

In the ever-changing world of social media, Facebook and Twitter are still the undisputed leaders. And while Google+, LinkedIn, MySpace and relative newcomer Pinterest all have their place, one platform is not-so-quietly making a notable surge.

According to the digital marketing firm comScore, Tumblr is one of the fastest-growing, consumer-oriented Internet sites over the past two years. Its audience has grown from 4.2 million visitors in July 2010 to more than 26.9 million in July 2012. As of July 30, Tumblr is home to 66.5 million blogs, which total more than 70 million daily posts with monthly page views of more than 17 billion.

In essence, Tumblr is a multimedia-focused blogging platform that marries the social networking of Facebook with the simplicity of Twitter and the full-featured aspects of Blogger or WordPress. But do we really need another social media technology?

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Rob Ashford to Choreograph 85th Academy Awards®

Emmy® and Tony® Award-winning choreographer Rob Ashford has been tapped to provide musical staging and choreography for the 85th Academy Awards telecast, show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today.

“Rob successfully directed and choreographed both of our recent Broadway revivals Promises, Promises and How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying. Not only is he uniquely gifted, but we’ve developed a working shorthand,” said Zadan and Meron. “We are excited to collaborate with him on the Oscars®, where we will be utilizing all his talents.”

Ashford’s work has been seen on “The Kennedy Center Honors” and “The Tony® Awards,” and in 2009, he won an Emmy for his work on the 81st Academy Awards show. He has been nominated for eight Tony Awards and won for Best Choreography in 2002 for Thoroughly Modern Millie. Ashford’s other Broadway choreography credits include The Wedding Singer, Curtains, Cry-Baby and Evita. Currently, Ashford is directing a revival of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof starring Scarlett Johansson.  Read the rest of this entry


Twenty-one features have been submitted for consideration in the Animated Feature Film category for the 85th Academy Awards®.

The 21 submitted features, listed in alphabetical order by title, are:

“Adventures in Zambezia”
“Delhi Safari”
“Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax”
“From Up on Poppy Hill”
“Hey Krishna”
“Hotel Transylvania”
“Ice Age Continental Drift”
“A Liar’s Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman”
“Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted”
“The Mystical Laws”
“The Painting”
“The Pirates! Band of Misfits”
“The Rabbi’s Cat”
“Rise of the Guardians”
“Secret of the Wings”
“Walter & Tandoori’s Christmas”
“Wreck-It Ralph”

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