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THE WRITERS’ ROOM: “House of Cards” Recapped and Revealed

THE WRITERS’ ROOM: “House of Cards” Recapped and Revealed

In the Theatre, a common rule of thumb says that one must never place a loaded rifle on stage if it isn’t going to go off. (Something about broken promises…) And in House of Cards, Netflix’s hit political drama, created by a Juilliard-trained playwright and first-time TV writer, the rule is sticking fast. Only everyone is breaking promises and guns are going off regardless—that’s not just a metaphor.

“The Writers’ Room” Interview: “House of Cards” Creator Beau Willimon

“The Writers’ Room” Interview: “House of Cards” Creator Beau Willimon

House of Cards creator Beau Willimon discusses his writing process, working for Netflix and predicting real-world politics.

Q: How is the US version of House of Cards different from the UK version?

A: The UK version aired in the early nineties, and both the world and television has changed a lot since then. You can look at the way that television has become, in a lot of ways, far more sophisticated, shows are digging into characters a lot more deeply. The British version was groundbreaking for its time because you had one of the first true antiheroes on television. But it’s entire three seasons were 12 hours total, combined, and our first season alone was 13 hours.

Top 10 films Mark Duplass thinks you should watch

Top 10 films Mark Duplass thinks you should watch

Actor-writer-director-all-around-indie-MVP Mark Duplass recently completed yet another project: recommending a streaming movie on Netflix every day for the past year. Here, then, are Duplass’ top ten selections from his hundreds of suggestions, nabbed from his Twitter handle @MarkDuplass. Long live #Netflix365!

Joan Rivers rails against rude moviegoers

Joan Rivers rails against rude moviegoers

The world’s funniest crabapple, Joan Rivers, goes to see movies now and again – no doubt to get ammunition for her monologues – and what she usually finds is discomfort, rudeness, and total annoyance. And not just on the screen.

In her new book, I Hate Everyone…Starting With Me, Rivers declares war on those who make cinema an experience in anxiety. Says she, “I hate people who go to the movies and act like they’re watching Netflix in their den.” Hallelujah!

Watch Sundance films from home…right now!

Watch Sundance films from home…right now!

If you’re a fan of independent film, there’s nothing better than being at the Sundance Film Festival. And if you’re a fan of independent film, there’s nothing worse than not being at the Sundance Film Festival. The future of indie cinema is unspooling before the eyes of your fellow cinephiles, and all you can do is sit back and read about it on Facebook. The Internet is a double-edged sword in this regard. Social media gives you instant and constant access to festival buzz — but for a long time you couldn’t act on that buzz until those buzzy movies found distribution and made their way to your local theater. Slowly but surely, though, the Internet is starting to bring Sundance films, old and new, right into your home. Now while Park City’s bustling, you can do a lot more than just refresh your Twitter feed for hours on end while you cry into a pint of ice cream (not that I would, y’know, do something like that. I have a very rich and full life of, uh, other things).

13 films make their digital premieres through Sundance Institute Artist Services program

13 films make their digital premieres through Sundance Institute Artist Services program

A still from CLEAR CUT: THE STORY OF PHILOMATH, OREGON
Sundance Institute announced thirteen films supported by the Institute that are for the first time available to rent, download and stream. Look for the films on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Hulu, SundanceNOW and YouTube. Films will be available on Netflix on March 1. For a full list of titles and where they are available, visit sundance.org/nowplaying or join Sundance Institute’s social media communities on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and Kickstarter.

Netflix envelope art

Netflix envelope art

The notion of using the red Netflix envelopes as a blank canvas is a genius idea, especially for chronic doodlers like myself. Doodlers Anonymous compiled some great examples from various professional and amateur artists. I especially like the sea-scape above by Jovino. This might motivate me to finally getting around to watching my Netflix dvd…

The Wizard of Oz at 70

The Wizard of Oz at 70

The Wizard of Oz turned seventy this year. The film continues to cast its spell on both children and adults. It has staying power that’s unheard of in Hollywood. And rightfully, in celebration of this big birthday, Netflix will on October 3rd stream the film for free for 24 hours.

The Auteurs: Netflix goes to art school

The Auteurs: Netflix goes to art school

Who doesn’t love the Netflix “watch instantly” option? You thought you had it good when you didn’t have to leave your house to rent a movie. Now you don’t even have to make the long walk to your mailbox. But there’s still one thing “watch instantly” doesn’t have. Sure, it’s great for those late night…

Festival Shorts Online

Festival Shorts Online

Sundance Institute announced today the program of short films selected to screen at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival. This year the Festival Short Film Program comprises 83 short films representing 17 countries from 5,107 submissions, from U.S. and international filmmakers. Submissions grew by more than 15% over last year. The 2008 Sundance Film Festival runs January 17-27 with screenings in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden, and Sundance, Utah.