Monday, February 25, 2008

Local wins

Congratulations are in order for Ulster County seudo-resident Joel Cohen, who along with brother Ethan, won two Oscars for directing and adapting the screenplay for "No Country for Old Men." That movie also won for best picture and for best supporting actor, the Spanish shotgun with a silencer named Javier Bardem.

(Note to CNN's Lou Dobbs: They're giving Oscars to foreigners. Commence outrage).

Cohen is married to Oscar winner Frances McDormand, from "Fargo," ya.
They share their time in New York City and Ulster County, according to the good people at the Woodstock Film Festival. The couple lives with their Paraguayan-born son Pedro.
TANGENT: Vote for Pedro! (but not you, Lou Dobbs!)

People with local connections who have appeared in Cohen movies include Ulster County part-timer Steve Buscemi (6 times), McDormand (5) and former SUNY New Paltz student John Turturro (4).
Cynthia Wade's "Freeheld" won the Oscar for documentary short subject. The movie was screened at the Woodstock Film Festival last year, but you might remember her better for her documentary "Shelter Dogs" about Rondout Valley Kennels in Accord.


"Michael Clayton" was partially shot in Orange County. The movie had seven nominations and won best supporting actress (Tilda Swinton).


Ellen Chenoweth, an advisory board member at the Woodstock Film Festival, was casting director for winners "No Country for Old Men" and "Michael Clayton." She also did the casting for 2005's "Good Night, and Good Luck" with Dutchess County's David Strathairn, who played Dutchess County's Edward R. Murrow.

Hudson Valley losers:

* Stewart Airport, which appeared in "American Gangster" (two nominations, no awards).

* "I'm Not There," about former Woodstocker Bob Dylan, as played in one incarnation by Cate Blanchett, who already has an Oscar anyway.

* The opening film at the Woodstock Film Festival last year, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," which had four nominations and received no statues.

* Lou Dobbs, for kicks. Although he's not from the valley, he did host spooky New York State Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno on Halloween to talk about what you already guessed -- ghoulish immigrants.
Actual quote from that show, taken completely out of context: "Nebulous. Nebulous. Nebulous."

* Yours truly, for stretching the local ties as much as ridiculously possible and going off on impossibly irrelevant tangents.