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  • NYFA Students Attend Red Carpet Premiere of Russell Crowe Directorial Debut at the Chinese Theater in Hollywood

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    nyfa student Last week New York Film Academy students received a special invitation to the Los Angeles premiere of Russell Crowe’s directorial debut film The Water Diviner at the historic Chinese Theater. Students from all departments and programs attended and got a rare, first-hand Hollywood red carpet event experience.

    NYFA producing student Emilio Madaio and acting student Tania Martínez where there and recounted the night’s events for us in an interview:

    What were your initial impressions of the event?

    Emilio: It was my first time at the Chinese Theater so I was really excited about it. With its (decorative) entrance it’s definitely a classy place. I saw some of the red carpet events before Russell Crowe arrived. It was fun to see it executed in real life—the interviewers behind the ropes courting the stars and trying to get there attention, the celebrities getting interviewed and posing for pictures with their best angle—that was interesting. I actually ended up sitting near the very front of the theater. Some of the movie’s cast like Yilmaz Erdogan and Ryan Corr sat close to me.

    Did you go with other NYFA students?

    Tania: I was with my whole class, except one person. There were 12 of us. And there were lots of people from other programs and classes too. Even one of my teachers was there. The whole theater was full and they had free popcorn and drinks for everyone.

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    Did you get to see Russell Crowe?

    Tania: I was seated little further back. But it didn’t matter because before the screening someone started talking (over a loudspeaker) saying, “Everyone please be seated…” and I didn’t realize who was talking but then I looked to my left and it was Russell Crowe. He was talking to the audience and making jokes. He didn’t even go onto the stage he just stayed upstairs (on a balcony) in the middle of the theater. Nobody realized it was him talking at first, then people started pointing and taking pictures.

    Emilio: Yes, he spoke from the back of the room and explained that usually at a premiere like this you will see the director talking at the front of the theater discussing why he wanted to make this movie, what happened on set, and what his influences were, but that he wasn’t going to do this. He just wanted to cut to the chase and let movie speak for itself. And he did it in a very funny way. He joked with the audience that after the screening they could trade in their ticket stubs with the Australian government to receive a free kola in the mail. After hearing Russell Crowe speak I decided he was a class act. He seemed like someone who had reached the top and wanted to give back. He supported the other actors in the movie, announcing who was in the audience and giving them a nice push, so to speak. He didn’t want to be the star that night; he wanted the movie to take the lead.

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    What did you think of the movie?

    Tania: Russell Crowe’s acting was great, as well as all the other actors. It’s the kind of movie that keeps you “in the movie” and engaged, and impacts you emotionally. And I’m a really family-oriented person and this movie has a great sense of family. I definitely recommend the movie.

    Emilio: I was very interested to see the directorial debut of an actor. The movie really delivered and exceeded my expectations. (As a producer) I was paying attention to the producing aspects of the movie and it’s much more than you would expect from a first time director. Would I recommend the movie to my friends? Yes!

    What happened after the screening?

    Tania: Afterwards many of the actors were talking to the crowd. People were congratulating them and taking pictures with them. I got to take pictures with a few of the cast members. It was interesting and nice. Walking through Hollywood you always see premieres and stuff going on, and normally you’re on the other side. And it was nice to be inside and to see it from another perspective. I really enjoyed it and want to go to another one!

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    April 24, 2015 • Community Highlights, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 5222

  • Australian Film Awards 2015: Russell Crowe, Rose Byrne and NYFA Australia

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    4th Annual AACTA Awards 2015

    4th AACTA Awards Red Carpet (Image from AACTA Facebook)

    The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards 2015 second star-studded awards event last night announced Russell Crowe directed film The Water Diviner and The Babadook (debut film for director Jennifer Kent) dual winners for ‘Best Film’. CEO Damian Trewhella considering this unusual, but not unprecedented.

    The big names kept coming, with AACTA president Geoffrey Rush awarding Rose Byrne the ‘Inaugural Trailblazer Award’.

    The Babadook , as expected, cleaned-up on the night, taking home three of the total four nominated categories (how they didn’t win an Oscar is beyond us). Other multi-award winner also included:

    • The Code for ’Best Television Drama Series’, ‘Best Direction in Television Drama or Comedy’, Ashley Zukerman for ‘Best Lead Actor in a Television Drama’ and Chelsea Preston Crayford for ‘Best Guest or Supporting Actress in Television Drama’
    • Please Like Me for ‘Best Screenplay in Television’ and Debra Lawrence for ‘Best Performance in Television Comedy’

    This year nominees and winners definitely raised the bar for the Australian film and television industry.

    On the night, a group of film and acting students from our very own New York Film Academy Australia had the privilege of rubbing shoulders with their idols. They walked the red carpet and took part of all the events of the ceremony including meeting with the actors, directors, produces and influential industry professionals. They took advantage of the opportunity to network and collated their own celebrity snapshots.

    NYFA Australia offer a range of industry related hands-on courses including Filmmaking, Acting for Film, Screenwriting and many more. The programs are designed to allow students hands-on and real-life industry experience and this particular event is the perfect example of what the Academy has to offer.

    For further details on New York Film Academy courses throughout the Australian and abroad, contact us.

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  • ‘Broken City’ Director of Photography Chats at NYFA Union Square

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    benseresin

    Last week, the New York Film Academy in Union Square hosted an exclusive Guest Speaker event with Cinematographer, Ben Seresin. Ben has been a member of the British Society of Cinematographers (BSC) since 2010, and the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) since 2011. He has worked on the films Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, World War Z, Pain & Gain, and more. With over twenty years in the business, Ben has worked with many of Hollywood’s top directors. Recently, blockbuster director, Michael Bay, has chosen to work with Ben on Transformers and Pain & Gain.

    On Wednesday, NYFA screened Ben’s film, Broken City, an action thriller starring Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe. While the movie sounds like a big Hollywood film, Ben says he had to work on a bit of a low budget. He admitted having to film major scenes in the course of a day. His goal was to shoot the noir in a contemporary way and to make New York City feel more like a home, as opposed to the glorified movie set it is so often portrayed as. Ben also noted that Russell Crowe was the most technical actor he’s ever worked with. “He had a great sense of the camera.”

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    One of the topics of the conversation between Ben and moderator John Loughlin was overshooting a scene, or allowing oneself to get wrapped up in the mechanics of filmmaking while on set. “Having a safe option can potentially be damaging,” said Seresin. “Compromises can be made if you over cover a scene. It can then be edited in many ways.” Ben added, “There’s a mechanical element that can distract you from film making. It’s dangerous if you get caught up in the mechanics. You lose sight of what’s really important.”

    His advice in avoiding this potentially damaging aspect of film making, “Try to stay detached. Be relaxed. Do not be stressed and trust your eyes.”

    Ben hopes to diversify his upcoming projects as he loves exploring all genres of cinema. We look forward to seeing more great work from Ben!

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    August 5, 2013 • Cinematography, Guest Speakers • Views: 6794