In the nineties, producer Lawrence Bender was closely linked with Quentin Tarantino and Miramax. In addition to producing most of Tarantino’s movies, Bender also oversaw Miramax’s Oscar-winning hit, Good Will Hunting. While Bender remains active as a producer, his movie career has cooled off since his heyday in the 90’s. He parted ways with Tarantino following Inglourious Basterds in 2009 and has been pulled into recent controversies surrounding his past partnerships. At the time of this profile in the March 1998 issue of Movieline magazine, Bender was still on top of the world.
1997 was a very good year for Matt Damon. After a few years of supporting roles in movies like School Ties and Courage Under Fire, Damon landed leading roles in The Rainmaker and Good Will Hunting. The latter earned Damon an actor for Best Original Screenplay for the script he wrote with buddy Ben Affleck. Damon’s “little guy makes good” story won him plenty of fans. As this interview from the December 1997 issue of Movieline magazine makes clear, Damon’s “aww shucks” reaction to his new-found fame was genuine.
And here we are in the second round of our 1997 movie bracket! The format for this round will be a little different than last round’s trailer and catch-all observations on the films and the people who made them. Over the next four days I’ll be featuring individual scenes from the competing films, discussing how they are written and shot and how they are reflective of the movies as a whole. While this will certainly say something about the films, I want to remind everyone involved that you are voting for the movie as a whole and not the featured scene.
Oh, by the way, SPOILERS!
In this top portion of our 1997 movies bracket game we’re focusing mostly on those films of the year which garnered a lot of critical and awards season attention. In some cases this also means that we’re reliving those moments when people we didn’t really know at the time took that next step and became actual movie stars. It’s a never ending process in the entertainment industry: the “next big thing.” Sometimes it’s a dream that actually pans out with an honest to God A-list career and sometimes we look back and realize that was their one big project. Sometimes it’s something in between.
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Note: This article was written prior to Robin Williams’ death on August 11, 2014. At present, Williams’ death is believed to be suicide. The purpose of this article is to review Williams’ career as an entertainer. My sympathy goes out to Williams’ friends and family. I am personally saddened by his passing. I will update this article as information becomes available. In the meanwhile, please view this as a celebration of William’s work.
At the peak of his career, Robin Williams was one of the most sought-after actors in Hollywood. He made the extremely rare transition from comedian to dramatic actor. What’s more, he was able to alternate between popular comedies and dramatic roles while winning awards for both. But eventually, Williams’ popularity waned. While Williams remains busy, his last starring role in a mainstream movie was in 2009.
What the hell happened?