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What Is Cinema?

The best movies feel as if they’d been born, not made. In a new series of articles and videos, Vanity Fair, in partnership with Rolex, starts a revealing conversation with—and among—filmmakers about their craft, their visions, and the art of paying inspiration forward. Technology and industry trends may change, but the drive to tell stories that mean something, and will last, does not. I think you’ll enjoy listening in.
—Radhika Jones, Vanity Fair Editor in Chief

Awards Insider!

Golden Globes Nominations 2024: The 10 Biggest Snubs and Surprises

Unexpected cheers for Beau Is Afraid and Slow Horses meet troubling misses for The Color Purple and Napoleon.

There Are No Winners in Wrestling Drama The Iron Claw

Zac Efron does his best to lend a brutal story some real humanity. 
Oscar Buzz

The Love Story of Jon Batiste and Suleika Jaouad

Batiste was being filmed for the documentary American Symphony when his wife learned that her cancer had returned. The result is full of beauty and pain.
Awards Insider!

Golden Globes 2024: See All the Nominations Here

Barbie and Oppenheimer reigned in the film categories, while Succession and Abbott Elementary continued their dominance on the TV side. 

The Talented Mr. Ripley at 25—Frank, Queer, and Ahead of Its Time

With Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Jude Law all at the peak of their star power, the thriller was an Oscar anomaly that became a touchstone.

On Set With Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone, and More

Go behind the scenes with some of the year’s most celebrated Oscar contenders.
Awards Insider!

Nicolas Cage Is Almost Done Making Films: “I May Have Three or Four More Movies Left in Me”

In conversation with Vanity Fair, the Oscar winner reveals why he’s nearing the end of his big-screen career—and what he hopes to do next.
cover story

Robert Downey Jr.’s Third Act: “He’s Lived a Complicated Life. He Understands the Stakes”

Following an Oscar-worthy turn in Oppenheimer, Downey’s inner circle size up the man and his considerable legacy.
Year in Review

The Best Movies of 2023

Vanity Fair’s chief critic lists the best movies of 2023, from Past Lives and May December to Poor Things.
Awards Insider!

Saltburn Star Barry Keoghan on the Film’s Revealing Ending

“Without sounding cocky, it wasn’t the nudity. That was fine for me. It was the dancing.”

Fallout First Look: This Is How the World Ends—With a Smiling Thumbs Up

The globally popular video game has become an epic TV series from Westworld creator Jonathan Nolan.

Playing Murderous Alex Murdaugh Was Freeing for Bill Pullman

The actor knows it’s surprising to hear that he stars as the notorious killer in Lifetime’s Murdaugh Murders: “There was something that felt like, this is a challenge.”
Awards Insider Exclusive

Matt Bomer Takes His Dark, Sexy Turn: “I Got to Be the Bad Boy”

Between Fellow Travelers and Maestro, the Emmy nominee is having the biggest year of his career—and that’s after he walked away from Barbie. We discuss his enticing new chapter.

The Hunger Games: Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes Is the Rare Good Prequel

It’s possible, Francis Lawrence’s movie suggests, to do something as cynical as a brand extension with care and insight.

Sandra Hüller Steps—Cautiously—Into the Spotlight

With roles in two riveting films this awards season, the moral thriller Anatomy of a Fall and the Holocaust drama The Zone of Interest, the German actor is figuring out what to make of Hollywood’s sudden attention.

After Barbie, Greta Gerwig Has No Plans to Rest

The director on her box office dominance, life with Noah Baumbach, and the grossest parenting story you’ve ever heard.
shot list

How the Warm, Elegant Look of The Holdovers Came Together

Director Alexander Payne and cinematographer Eigil Bryld needed a lot of snow, and actors up for the task, to tell the quiet, melancholy story of three people spending Christmas at a New England boarding school.
Character Building

How Cailee Spaeny Became Priscilla

Inside the endless fittings, giant wigs, intimate conversations, and single-take risks that went into the creation of an indelible heroine for Sofia Coppola’s new film.
Gobble Gobble

The 21 Best Thanksgiving Movies to Stream Right Now

Embrace one of Hollywood’s more undercelebrated holidays with Planes, Trains and Automobiles; Knives Out; or Spider-Man. Yes, Spider-Man!
Little Gold Men

Greta Lee on the High Stakes of Past Lives

“After 20 years of waiting for something like this, I didn't want to mess it up,” says the actor starring in Celine Song’s debut film.
Little Gold Men

With The Holdovers, Alexander Payne Faces His Admirers

The Oscar winner is back with his best-received movie in years. He’s still working out the reasons why people are responding to it. 

Jacob Elordi’s Elvis Voice Stunned Priscilla Presley

“What struck her the most was how much his voice sounded like Elvis,” Priscilla filmmaker Sofia Coppola says of her real-life subject’s reaction to the film.
The Power of Christ Compels You

The Truth Behind the Hidden Demon in The Exorcist

A deep investigation into a single frame of film—and a bizarre mystery that’s lasted for decades.
Shot List

Inside Todd Haynes’s Twisted, Ingenious Vision for May December

The director and his cinematographer, Christopher Blauvelt, go deep into the images behind their Netflix dark comedy—and showcasing three of the best performances of the year.
Awards Insider First Look

Why Anthony Hopkins’s Whole Career Led Him to Freud’s Last Session

Hopkins plays a Sigmund Freud in deep reflection over his extraordinary life and impending death—an experience that compelled the actor to look inward himself.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Ari Aster Still Wants You to Consider Beau Is Afraid

The writer-director gets frank about the “stunted” release of his polarizing film: “You’re very excited by the idea of dividing people, but then it comes out…and you realize, ‘This is also functioning as a deterrent for people to even go see it.’”

Nyad Is a Love Story

Screenwriter Julia Cox on structuring her sports movie like a romance, controversy around its real-life subject, and “the unbelievable tenacity and athleticism of Annette Bening.”
Awards Insider!

Leonardo DiCaprio Cements a Thrilling New Era in Killers of the Flower Moon

The Oscar winner’s insidious portrayal of a bystander to genocide fits the recent theme of his filmography—and marks perhaps his most interesting stretch as an actor.
The Sooner State

The Strange but True Story of the Pioneer Woman’s Link to Killers of the Flower Moon

Ree Drummond’s family hasn’t been directly implicated in the Reign of Terror depicted in Martin Scorsese’s new movie—but their present-day dynasty has an unmistakable connection to that years-long killing spree.
Little Gold Men

Behind Jamie Foxx’s Brilliant, Wild Performance in The Burial

“He’s almost frighteningly talented,” director Maggie Betts tells Vanity Fair. She reveals how Foxx’s all-timer performance in the new Amazon film came to be.
Cover Story

Malibu Barbra: Inside Barbra Streisand’s World

On the eve of her memoir, the legend invites VF to her home to talk music, dogs, pickup lines, and the movies she still wants to make.

Barbra Streisand on The Way We Were and Her Fight to Get It Right

In an exclusive from her memoir, the legend talks about Robert Redford (“great teeth”) and the scenes Sydney Pollack should never have cut.
Witchy Women

How Practical Magic Pissed Off a Real-Life Witch

Twenty-five years later, the film’s director talks that famous midnight-margaritas scene—“Everybody got shit-faced”—and the magic consultant who threatened to sue Warner Bros. over the production: “They said, ‘Fuck this,’ and wrote her a check.”
Shot List

How The Royal Hotel Pulls Off the Most Potent Cinematic Tension of the Year

Kitty Green’s second feature explores everyday terrors on a scale so believably familiar you never know if she’s going to turn the screw into a full horror movie. Here’s how the film maintained its pressure-cooker tone.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Christine Vachon, Hollywood’s Greatest Anomaly

The legendary producer broke Hollywood barriers, changed American movies, and is behind two of 2023’s best films in Past Lives and May December. Her first Oscar nomination is finally in sight: “It would mean an extraordinary amount to me.”

Henry Cavill and Dua Lipa Steam Up the Spy Thriller Argylle

Actually, it’s all fake. Bryce Dallas Howard stars in director Matthew Vaughn’s send-up of his own action movies. “We’re having fun destroying these tropes.”

The Outsiders: Why Black Audiences Love Italian American Screen Icons

Tony Montana. Michael Corleone. Rocky Balboa. Beloved film tropes illuminate a history of race, whiteness, and the fallacy of the American dream.
Exclusive Excerpt

Marvel Secrets Revealed: Alternate Castings That Would Have Changed Everything

Chadwick Boseman as Drax. Alexander Skarsgård as Thor. John Krasinski as Captain America. An exclusive book excerpt dives into the formative days of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Helen Mirren Confronts the Complex, Challenging “Career Milestone” of Golda

In an exclusive chat, Mirren gets frank with Vanity Fair about the controversy around her casting, the experience of using heavy prosthetics for the first time, and the decision to portray a divisive historical subject.
New Directions

Nia DaCosta, Barrier-Breaking Director of The Marvels, on Navigating the Blockbuster Machine

“The thing I’ve been most surprised by lately,” says the filmmaker, who broke through with the horror hit Candyman, “is how much respect I’ve been getting from these middle-aged white dudes.”

The 31 Best Feel-Good Movies to Boost Your Mood

From silent-film classics to modern rom-com hits, the best feel-good movies have a timeless power to bring out smiles—and sometimes a few tears too.
Awards Insider!

The 14 Best Movies From the Fall Film Festivals

Venice, Telluride, and Toronto offered a wide range of titles worth anticipating. Our film festival correspondents pick their favorites.
Toronto Film Festival

Anna Kendrick Soars With Directorial Debut About True-Life Killer on a Game Show

Other actors turned directors have struggled to connect at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Patricia Arquette Makes a Bold Directorial Debut With Gonzo Girl

An aspiring writer falls into the chaotic world of a Hunter S. Thompson–like character in this coming-of-age tale.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Kate Winslet Embodies an Unsung American Icon in Lee

Winslet digs deep in her portrayal of groundbreaking wartime photographer Lee Miller. Inside the biopic that was two decades in the making.
Venice Film Festival

In Priscilla, a Complex True Story Is Gracefully Told

Priscilla Presley's marriage to the most famous man of her era is the subject of Sofia Coppola's measured film. 

How Madonna Turned the League of Their Own Set Into a Three-Ring Circus

In this excerpt from the new book No Crying in Baseball, Erin Carlson reveals how the pop star’s hiring made an A-list actor drop out, how Madonna and Rosie O’Donnell became fast friends, and how a $10 tip stunned a Madonna-impersonating drag queen.
Awards Insider!

2023 Fall Preview: 46 Films to Watch Out For

From actors making their directorial debuts to cinema legends pushing the form even further, the moviegoing landscape is as exciting as it’s ever been this season.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Welcome to Saltburn’s Twisted Gothic Tale

“There has to be an element of revulsion,” says Emerald Fennell of her sophomore film about desire and obsession, starring Barry Keoghan.
Awards Insider Exclusive

With Maestro, Leonard Bernstein’s Legacy and Loves Finally Hit the Big Screen

His daughter Jamie Bernstein speaks for the first time about Bradley Cooper’s transformation to play her father, and the “portrait of a marriage” at the heart of the film.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Inside All of Us Strangers, Andrew Scott and Paul Mescal’s Metaphysical Love Story

Andrew Haigh’s new film All of Us Strangers parallels a steamy romance between Scott and Mescal with an aching reunion of the dead and the living. Together, they make for an emotional epic.

“That Escalated Quickly”: Inside Anchorman’s Epic Battle Sequence

An excerpt from Saul Austerlitz’s Kind of a Big Deal: How Anchorman Stayed Classy and Became the Most Iconic Comedy of the Twenty-First Century.
Awards Insider Exclusive

First Look: Annette Bening Swims Toward the Role of a Lifetime in Nyad

Bening and costar Jodie Foster reveal the intensive training, tight bonding, and mental endurance that their stirring biopic required: “I don’t know how she did it.”
Awards Insider Exclusive

First Look: Paul Mescal and Saoirse Ronan Face a Dangerous Future in Foe

This twisty, apocalyptic marital thriller takes the two Oscar nominees on a wild ride—one that will keep you guessing until the film’s final seconds. We go inside the intense collaboration.
In Memoriam

The Film That Returned William Friedkin to Critical Acclaim

On the occasion of the director’s death, we take a look back at one of his most important works, the 1985 film To Live and Die in LA. In this darkly seductive portrait of Los Angeles in the 1980s, it is impossible to distinguish the lines that divide right and wrong.
Little Gold Men

The Elvis Presley We Didn’t See in Elvis

On this week’s Little Gold Men podcast, a discussion of Priscilla Presley’s memoir, Elvis and Me, and the upcoming Sofia Coppola movie it inspired. 
Awards Insider Exclusive

Watch Phoebe Dynevor and Alden Ehrenreich Go to War in the Breathless Fair Play Trailer

Plus: Writer-director Chloe Domont on her actors’ on-camera explosion, that huge sale to Netflix, and conflicting opinions about her movie.
Little Gold Men

The Two Very Different Versions of Killers of the Flower Moon

The Little Gold Men book club series kicks off with a look at the 2017 book by David Grann, soon to be a film by Martin Scorsese. 

Can You Name the (Great) Movie That Launched Brie Larson, LaKeith Stanfield, Rami Malek, and More?

The now famous cast of Short Term 12, as well as writer-director Destin Daniel Cretton, look back in amazement a decade later.

Red, White & Royal Blue May Be “the Most Expensive Bit of Fan Fiction Ever”

In this VF photo exclusive, director and cowriter Matthew López talks about adapting a beloved queer beach read and getting energy from its impassioned fan base: “I knew that this was a story that I absolutely had to tell.”

Jaws Became a Living Nightmare”: Steven Spielberg's Ultimate Tell-All Interview

“It was made under the worst of conditions,” the filmmaker reveals in a new book. “People versus the eternal sea. The sea won the battle.”
Awards Insider!

Oppenheimer—and, Yes, Barbie—Have a Real Shot at the 2024 Oscars

After a historic weekend at the box office, both Barbenheimer films are primed for strong awards campaigns.
bathroom breaks

Why Are Movies Sooooo Long? An Investigation

Despite groans from audiences and executives alike, new releases seem to keep getting longer. Can anyone make a 90-minute movie anymore? 
Hi, Barbie!

Dreamhouse, Assemble: How Barbie Cast Barbie, Barbie, Barbie (and Ken)

Casting directors Lucy Bevan and Allison Jones sought a very specific quality: “We needed actors who could get the fact that our Barbies only knew pleasant things.”

Barbie Is About as Good as a Barbie Movie Could Ever Be

Greta Gerwig’s film is more than an advertisement, but a little less than a dream.
Awards Insider Exclusive

Rustin First Look: Colman Domingo Is Bayard Rustin, the Man Who Turned MLK’s Dream Into a Reality

The star and director George C. Wolfe shine a spotlight on an unsung civil rights hero: “The more I was living with Bayard, I just became overwhelmed.”
in conversation

Lakota Nation vs. the United States and the Fight for the Black Hills

Directors Jesse Short Bull and Laura Tomaselli on their new documentary, which charts the Lakota quest to return to their most sacred place.
striking back

AI May Kill Us All, but It’ll Never Write a Good Movie

A member of the WGA’s AI working group reflects on screenwriting in the age of artificial intelligence—and explains why now is the time to stand up for human labor.
Old Hollywood Book Club

Beautiful Dreamer: Ali MacGraw’s Semi-Charmed Life

From the outside, MacGraw seemed to float into superstardom—but as she writes in her memoir, that apparently effortless celebrity came at a cost.
We Come to This Place for Magic

Barbie, Bombs, Blockbusters! Box Office Wars Return as a Spectator Sport

Hollywood needs to make $4 billion this summer to be truly in the pink. 
Little Gold Men

Glenn Howerton, Oscar Contender

The It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia star really is that good in BlackBerry, one of the most dynamic films of the year. We go deep with him on hearing early awards chatter—and what it means to him to hear it.
Throw Me the Whip

The Unbelievable True Stories of the Real Indiana Jones

He hated snakes, looked great in a fedora, and had globe-trotting adventures that captivated the world. Roy Chapman Andrews set the template for the world’s most famous (fictional) archaeologist.

The Real Rock Hudson: A Moving New HBO Doc Claims Him as a Gay Icon

Rock Hudson: All That Heaven Allowed examines the star’s closeted career—and the significance of him going public with his AIDS diagnosis.
swan song

John Williams Always Settles the Score

Ahead of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, we take stock of the 91-year-old who’s composed countless unforgettable movie themes—and arguably saved classical music in the process.
Little Gold Men

Ian McKellen Made Oscar History in 1999—And Shamefully, No One Else Has Repeated It

A look back at Gods and Monsters, to this day, the only film to earn an Oscar nomination for an openly gay male actor. 
state of the union

The Flash Is the Past; Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Is the Future

Viewed back-to-back, these dueling multiverse sagas show what’s gone wrong with superhero movies—and how the genre can be saved.

First Look: The Deepest Breath Tells a Heartbreaking True Story About Diving

The documentary about world champion Alessia Zecchini and her coach Stephen Keenan explores loyalty and obsession.

Take Care of Maya Tackles a Thorny, Heartbreaking Medical Mystery

Situations like that of Maya Kowalski—a kid whose chronic illness was just the beginning of her troubles—are “a nationwide pattern,” says doc director Henry Roosevelt.
Why Me?

Diane Keaton Asks Francis Ford Coppola a Question 50+ Years in the Making

Figuring she’s got job security now, the Oscar-winning actress pings her former director over Instagram.
Little Gold Men

Bryan Cranston on Returning to Walter White, Wes Anderson, and More

The Emmy winner talks with Little Gold Men about his Asteroid City role, reprising his Breaking Bad icon, and the mystery project he’s got up next.
Little Gold Men

A Groundbreaking Queer Oscar Winner and Its Very, Very Complicated Legacy

In 1986 William Hurt became the first actor to win an Oscar for playing an openly queer character. Did he start one of the Oscars’ worst trends? 
Tribeca Film Festival

“I Have to Direct This”: 7 Actors Who Took the Camera Into Their Own Hands

A group chat with Tribeca Film Festival standouts David Duchovny, Jennifer Esposito, Hamish Linklater, Chelsea Peretti, Lily Rabe, Michael Shannon, and John Slattery.

Zack Snyder Goes Galactic: Exclusive First Look at Rebel Moon

The Netflix saga was once Snyder’s pitch for a Star Wars movie. Now it’s in a universe all its own.
Awards Insider!

Early Hollywood’s “Joyous Bisexual” and Her Most Daring Onscreen Roles

The Little Gold Men podcast kicks off a series of Pride flashbacks with 1932’s Shanghai Express, starring the inimitable Marlene Dietrich and Anna May Wong.
Cannes Film Festival

Did an Oscar Winner Premiere at Cannes?

The fest’s best range, from Scorsese’s Native American epic to a mesmerizingly grim Holocaust tale.
Cannes Film Festival

Natalie Portman and Todd Haynes Don’t Want to Be ‘Vampires on People’s Lives’

In Haynes’s May December, Portman plays an actor studying the life of a tabloid sensation.
cannes 2023

Wes Anderson Gets Back to Basics, Beautifully, in Asteroid City

The director’s layered latest is his best film in years.
Awards Insider!

“There’s a Movement”: Inside the Fight to De-gender Awards Shows

Nonbinary actors are withdrawing from consideration. Still more are calling for change. The industry may need to finally start listening.
Cannes 2023

Martin Scorsese Has Never Made a Movie Like Killers of the Flower Moon 

Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, and Lily Gladstone anchor a riveting American crime story.
Cannes 2023

The Zone of Interest Is a Bold, Terrifying Vision of the Holocaust

By focusing on an infamous Nazi commandant and his family, Jonathan Glazer takes an unflinching look at the banality of evil.
In Conversation

“She’s So F--king Funny”: Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Michaela Watkins’s Sister Act

They first worked together 15 years ago. Now the comic actors play sisters in Nicole Holofcener’s acclaimed movie You Hurt My Feelings
Cannes 2023

13 Cannes Film Festival 2023 Premieres We’ve Got Our Eyes On

Killers of the Flower Moon, Asteroid City, and more of Richard Lawson and Rebecca Ford’s most anticipated titles.
Walking and Talking

Nicole Holofcener Isn’t Holding Back

The director of You Hurt My Feelings gets candid about her new film and life as an artist: “I feel like if I stick to doing what I love or really like, my career’s always in jeopardy.”

Jane Fonda on Marriage, Sex, and Succession—Plus Looking at Herself in the Mirror at 85

The Oscar winner also shares the parenting advice that’ll prevent you from making the mistakes she did, and why she prefers to be single: “I can get much more done when I’m on my own.”
old hollywood book club

The Contrarian: Marlon Brando’s Paradoxical Life  

Troubled, righteous, callous, brilliant: A pair of biographies prove that the iconic actor was impossible to pin down.
Awards Insider!

Jemima Khan’s Had Enough of Fairy Tales

The writer of the rom-com What’s Love Got to Do With It? made a love letter to Pakistan that also questions how anyone finds love in the first place. 

26 Summer Movies to Anticipate in 2023

Whether you want a massive blockbuster or a future Oscar contender, there’s much to choose from in what’s looking like the busiest summer movie season in years.

Dune: Part Two Trailer Reveals Austin Butler’s Dead-Faced Assassin

The Elvis star’s appearance has been closely shrouded, but a new teaser shows his fearsome transformation.
From the Magazine

Suddenly, Stephanie Hsu Is Everywhere

The Oscar nominee on her intense year, her love for Jamie Lee Curtis, and how her next movie, Joy Ride, defies stereotypes.
Little Gold Men

Michael Shannon on Music, the Apocalypse, and Keeping Up With Hollywood

The Oscar nominee goes deep on everything from his Emmy-bound critical darling, George & Tammy, to what lies ahead with The Flash and more.