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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

THE BIG SHORT

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The Big Short
The Big Short teaser poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAdam McKay
Produced by
Screenplay by
Based onThe Big Short
by Michael Lewis
Starring
Music byNicholas Britell
CinematographyBarry Ackroyd
Edited byHank Corwin
Production
companies
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release dates
  • November 12, 2015(AFI Fest)
  • December 11, 2015(United States)
Running time
130 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$28 million[2]
Box office$121.3 million[3]
The Big Short is a 2015 American biographical comedy-drama film directed and co-written by Adam McKay.[4] It is based on the non-fiction 2010 book of the same name by Michael Lewis about the financial crisis of 2007–2008, which was triggered by the build-up of the housing market and the credit bubble.[4] The film stars Christian BaleSteve CarellRyan Gosling, and Brad Pitt.
Distributed by Paramount Pictures, the film began a limited release in the US on December 11, 2015, followed by a wide release on December 23, 2015.[5][6] The film is nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best PictureBest DirectorBest Supporting Actor for Bale, and Best Adapted Screenplay.

Plot[edit]

In 2005, eccentric hedge fund manager Michael Burry (Christian Bale) discovers that the U.S. housing market is extremely unstable, being based on subprime loans that are high risk and providing fewer and fewer returns. Predicting that the market will collapse sometime in the second quarter of 2007, he realizes that he can profit from this situation by creating a credit default swap market, allowing him to bet against the housing market. He visits several major banks and investment dealers with this idea; these firms, believing that the housing market is secure, accept his proposal. This earns the ire of Burry's clients who believe that he is wasting their money and demand that he stop his activities, but he refuses. As the predicted time of the collapse approaches, his investors lose their confidence and consider pulling their money out, but Burry puts a moratorium on withdrawals, much to his investors' anger. However, the market collapses just as he predicted and he produces 489% profits from the plan.
Trader Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) hears of Burry's actions from one of the bankers he dealt with, and soon realizes that Burry's predictions are likely true. He decides to put his own stake in the credit default swap market. A misplaced phone call alerts hedge fund manager Mark Baum (Steve Carell) to his plans, and Baum is convinced to join Vennett. The two discover that the impending market collapse is being further perpetuated by the sale of collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), groups of poor loans that are packaged together and incorrectly given AAA ratings due to theconflict of interest and dishonesty of the rating agencies.
When Baum attends the American Securitization Forum in Las Vegas, he interviews businessman Mr. Chau (Byron Mann), who has created synthetic CDOs, making what is described as a chain of increasingly large bets on the faulty loans. Baum realizes, much to his horror, that the scale of the fraud will cause a complete collapse of the economy. Baum's business partners convince him to go through with the credit default swaps, profiting from the situation at the banks' expense.
Eager young investors Charlie Geller (John Magaro) and Jamie Shipley (Finn Wittrock) accidentally discover a paper by Vennett and also decide to become involved in the credit default swaps. Since they are under the required capital for an ISDA needed to pull off the trades necessary to profit from the situation, they enlist the aid of retired banker Ben Rickert (Brad Pitt). The three visit the Mortgage Securities Forum in Las Vegas, where they manage to successfully make the deals. Shipley and Geller are initially ecstatic, but Rickert is disgusted by their essentially celebrating an impending economic collapse and soon-to-be-lost lives. The two are horrified, and take a much more emotional stake in the collapse by trying to tip off the press and their families about the upcoming disaster. Ultimately, they profit immensely, but are left with their faith in the system broken.
Burry semi-retires and invests only in water, Baum refuses to say "I told you so" to the world and continues his career, Rickert returns to his retirement, and Shipley and Geller unsuccessfully attempt to sue the ratings companies, with the latter electing to move to Charlotte, North Carolina to raise a family. Almost nobody involved in the creation of the CDO bubble is arrested, andBespoke CDOs are soon sold again. The film refers to "bespoke opportunity tranches," though in reality, they are usually referred to as a "Bespoke CDO" or "Single-tranche CDO."

Cast[edit]

  • Christian Bale as Dr. Michael Burry,[7] a neurologist turned hedge fund manager who started California-based hedge fund Scion Capital. He has Asperger syndrome and an artificial left eye. He conceived the idea of a household bubble from which the others followed.
  • Steve Carell as Mark Baum (based on Steve Eisman),[7] the outspoken manager of Wall Street hedge fund FrontPoint Capital (based on FrontPoint Partners), who is approached by Jared Vennett to invest in the credit default swap.
  • Ryan Gosling as Jared Vennett (based on Greg Lippmann),[7] a self-interested but highly talented bond salesman at Deutsche Bank who decides to short CDOs even though Deutsche itself is involved in the CDO business. He does the majority of narration.
  • Brad Pitt as Ben Rickert (based on Ben Hockett),[7] Charlie and Jamie's trader and mentor, who previously worked at the JPMorgan Chase Bank in Singapore as a trader and is pessimistic about the banking industry.
  • John Magaro as Charlie Geller (based on Charlie Ledley),[8] one of the founders and partners of Brownfield Capital (based on Cornwall Capital), a fledgling but up-and-coming hedge fund started in a garage and looking to make an impact on Wall Street.
  • Finn Wittrock as Jamie Shipley (based on Jamie Mai),[9] Geller's friend and partner at Brownfield.
  • Hamish Linklater as Porter Collins, a top staffer at FrontPoint.
  • Rafe Spall as Danny Moses, the top trader at FrontPoint.
  • Jeremy Strong as Vinny Daniel, the lead analyst at FrontPoint.
  • Adepero Oduye as Kathy Tao, Baum's advisor at FrontPoint.
  • Marisa Tomei as Cynthia Baum (based on Valerie Feigen),[10] Mark's wife.
  • Melissa Leo as Georgia Hale, an employee at Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC.
  • Stanley Wong as Ted Jiang (based on Eugene Xu),[11] Vennett's mathematical consultant.
  • Jeffry Griffin as Chris, Vennett's assistant.
  • Byron Mann as Mr. Chau (based on Wing Chau),[12] the owner of a CDO business, who Vennett sets up as the foil to Baum.
  • Tracy Letts as Lawrence Fields, Burry's boss.
  • Karen Gillan as Evie, a worker for the Supreme Court of Canada.[13]
  • Max Greenfield as Mortgage Broker[14]
  • Billy Magnussen as Mortgage Broker[15]
  • Margot Robbie as Herself (Cameo)[16]
  • Selena Gomez as Herself (Cameo)[16]
  • Richard Thaler as Himself (Cameo)[16][17]
  • Anthony Bourdain as Himself (Cameo)[16]

Production notes[edit]

Development[edit]

In 2013, Paramount acquired the rights to the 2010 non-fiction book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine by Michael Lewis, to develop it into a film, which Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment would produce.[18] On March 24, 2014, Adam McKay was hired to write and direct a film about the housing and economic bubble.[4] Screenwriter Charles Randolph, who co-wrote the film with McKay, said one of the first challenges was finding the right tone for the film. He told Creative Screenwriting, "In general it was trying to find the right tone that was slightly funnier than your average Milos Forman comedy, which is all grounded character-based but not so satirical where you got Wag the Dog. Somewhere between there was what I was shooting for. Once I got the tone down, then I went through the plot. The market’s movements provided you with an underlying plot. You make your short deal, then the bank is trying to squeeze you out, and then it all breaks loose. So that was pretty easy, and it provided character arcs against that."[19] Two years after Randolph wrote his draft, McKay, as director, rewrote Randolph's screenplay. It was McKay's idea to include the celebrity cameos in the film to explain the financial concepts.[20]

Casting[edit]

On January 13, 2015, Variety reported that Brad PittChristian Bale, and Ryan Gosling were set to star in the film, with Pitt producing the film along with Dede Gardner and Jeremy KleinerPlan B Entertainment would finance, with Paramount handling the distribution rights.[21] Before this, Pitt had already starred in the adaptation of the author's Moneyball, for which he was nominated for an Oscar.[4][21] On January 14, it was announced that Steve Carell would also star.[7] On April 21, 2015, more cast was revealed by Deadline, including Melissa LeoMarisa TomeiTracy Letts,Hamish LinklaterJohn MagaroByron MannRafe SpallJeremy Strong, and Finn Wittrock.[22] Charles Randolph wrote the initial draft.[22] Max Greenfield joined the ensemble cast of the film on April 23, 2015.[14] Karen Gillan tweeted about her involvement in the film on May 8, 2015.[13]

Filming[edit]

Principal photography on the film began on March 18, 2015 in New OrleansLouisiana.[23][24] On March 25, filming was taking place on General De Gaulle Boulevard in the Algiers section of New Orleans.[25] On May 8, Gillan confirmed she was shooting her scenes.[13] On May 20, 2015, filming took place on Mercer, between the Prince Street and Spring Street in ManhattanNew York City.[26] On May 22, the production crew recreated the offices of failed investment firm Lehman Brothers in the lobby of the New York State Department of Financial Services in Manhattan.[27] An assistant counsel for the Department of Financial Services played one of the extras in the scene.[27]

Release[edit]

On September 22, 2015, Paramount set the film for a limited release on December 11, 2015 and a wide release on December 23, 2015.[28][29]
On February 10, 2016, it was announced that the film would be released on DVD and Blu-ray on March 15, 2016.

Reception[edit]

Box office[edit]

As of February 21, 2016, The Big Short has grossed $67.1 million in North America and $54.2 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $121.3 million, against a budget of $28 million.[3]
The film was released in eight theaters in Los AngelesNew YorkSan Francisco and Chicago on December 11, 2015 and earned $705,527 (an average of $88,191 per theater). It set the record for the best ever per-screen gross for a film opening in eight locations, breaking the previous record held by Memoirs of a Geisha ($85,313 per theater),[30] and was the third biggest theater average of 2015 behind the four screen debuts of Steve Jobs ($130,000) and The Revenant ($118,640).[31]
The film had its wide release on Wednesday December 23, 2015 and grossed $2.3 million on its first day. In its opening weekend it grossed $10.5 million, finishing 6th at the box office.[32]

Critical response[edit]

The Big Short has received positive reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a rating of 88%, based on 245 reviews, with an average rating of 7.8/10. The website's consensus reads, "The Big Short approaches a serious, complicated subject with an impressive attention to detail – and manages to deliver a well-acted, scathingly funny indictment of its real-life villains in the bargain."[33] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 81 out of 100, based on 45 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".[34] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A–" on an A+ to F scale.[35]
IGN gave the film a score of 8.6/10, praising its "energetic direction" and making "a complicated tale palpable for the layperson even as it triggers outrage at the fatcats who helped cause it."[36]The New York Times's "UpShot" series stated The Big Short offered the "strongest film explanation of the global financial crisis".[37] Vermont senator and 2016 presidential candidate Bernie Sanders endorsed The Big Short as an "excellent film".[38][39]

Accolades[edit]

List of awards and nominations
AwardCategoryRecipients and nomineesResult
Academy AwardsBest PictureDede GardnerJeremy Kleiner, and Brad PittPending
Best DirectorAdam McKayPending
Best Supporting ActorChristian BalePending
Best Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphPending
Best Film EditingHank CorwinPending
American Cinema Editors AwardsBest Edited Feature Film – Comedy or MusicalWon
American Film Institute AwardsTop 10 Films of the YearThe Big ShortWon
Artios AwardsBig Budget – ComedyFrancine Maisler and Meagan LewisWon
British Academy Film AwardsBest FilmDede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, and Brad PittNominated
Best DirectorAdam McKayNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphWon
Best Actor in a Supporting RoleChristian BaleNominated
Best EditingHank CorwinNominated
Critics' Choice Movie AwardsBest PictureThe Big ShortNominated
Best ComedyThe Big ShortWon
Best EditingHank CorwinNominated
Best Actor in a ComedyChristian BaleWon
Steve CarellNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphWon
Best Acting EnsembleChristian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan GoslingMelissa LeoHamish LinklaterJohn MagaroBrad Pitt,Rafe SpallJeremy StrongMarisa Tomei, and Finn WittrockNominated
Directors Guild of America AwardBest DirectorAdam McKayNominated
Golden Globe AwardsBest Motion Picture – Musical or ComedyThe Big ShortNominated
Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or ComedyChristian BaleNominated
Steve CarellNominated
Best ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphNominated
Hollywood Film AwardsBreakthrough DirectorAdam McKayWon
Houston Film Critics SocietyBest PictureThe Big ShortNominated
Indiana Film Journalists Association Awards[40]Best FilmThe Big ShortNominated
Best DirectorAdam McKayNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphRunner-up
Best Supporting ActorChristian BaleNominated
Steve CarellNominated
Los Angeles Film Critics AssociationBest EditingHank CorwinWon
National Board of Review AwardsBest EnsembleChristian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Melissa Leo, Hamish Linklater, John Magaro, Brad Pitt, Rafe Spall, Jeremy Strong, Marisa Tomei, and Finn WittrockWon
Producers Guild of America AwardBest Theatrical Motion PictureDede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, and Brad PittWon
San Francisco Film Critics CircleBest Film EditingHank CorwinNominated
Satellite AwardsBest FilmThe Big ShortNominated
Best Supporting ActorChristian BaleWon
Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting RoleNominated
Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion PictureChristian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Melissa Leo, Hamish Linklater, John Magaro, Brad Pitt, Rafe Spall, Jeremy Strong, Marisa Tomei, and Finn WittrockNominated
USC Scripter AwardBest Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphWon
Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association AwardsBest EnsembleChristian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Melissa Leo, Hamish Linklater, John Magaro, Brad Pitt, Rafe Spall, Jeremy Strong, Marisa Tomei, and Finn WittrockWon
Writers Guild of America AwardBest Adapted ScreenplayAdam McKay and Charles RandolphWon

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. Jump up^ "THE BIG SHORT (15)"British Board of Film Classification. November 9, 2015. Retrieved November 9,2015.
  2. Jump up^ Thompson, Anne. "AFI FEST REVIEW: 'The Big Short' Is Smart Expose of Financial Meltdown"Thompson on Hollywood. Indiewire. Retrieved 18 November 2015.
  3. Jump up to:a b "The Big Short (2015)"Box Office Mojo. RetrievedFebruary 21, 2016.
  4. Jump up to:a b c d "Paramount Taps ‘Anchorman’ Helmer Adam McKay To Adapt And Direct Michael Lewis’ ‘The Big Short’ About Economic Meltdown"deadline.com. March 24, 2014. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
  5. Jump up^ "Paramount pushes 'The Big Short' into awards season".CNS News. Retrieved 2015-12-26.
  6. Jump up^ "The Big Short | Trailer & Movie Site | December 2015".The Big Short. Retrieved 2015-12-26.
  7. Jump up to:a b c d e Kit, Borys (January 14, 2015). "Steve Carell in Talks to Join Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling in 'The Big Short'". hollywoodreporter.com. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
  8. Jump up^ "The True Story Behind The Big Short"History vs Hollywood. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  9. Jump up^ "The True Story Behind The Big Short"History vs Hollywood. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  10. Jump up^ "The True Story Behind The Big Short"History vs Hollywood. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  11. Jump up^ Rhoades, Shirrel (December 24, 2015). "The Big Short (Rhoades)"Tropic Cinema. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  12. Jump up^ "The True Story Behind The Big Short"History vs Hollywood. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  13. Jump up to:a b c "Karen Gillan on Twitter"Twitter. Retrieved May 21,2015.
  14. Jump up to:a b "Max Greenfield Joins Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling in ‘The Big Short’ (EXCLUSIVE)"Variety. April 23, 2015. RetrievedApril 23, 2015.
  15. Jump up^ Staff, THR (2 December 2015). "'The Big Short' Director Adam McKay on Billy Magnussen Shrinking Steve Carell's Wardrobe"The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 26 January2016.
  16. Jump up to:a b c d Finely, Dash (December 16, 2015). "The Big Secrets Of The Big Short: How Unexpected Cameos Impact The Year's Must-See Film". MoviePilot.com. RetrievedDecember 27, 2015.
  17. Jump up^ "The Big Short Somehow Makes Subprime Mortgages Entertaining". Wired.com. December 11, 2015. RetrievedDecember 30, 2015.
  18. Jump up^ McNary, Dave (March 24, 2014). "‘Anchorman’s’ Adam McKay Boards Financial Drama"variety.com. RetrievedApril 18, 2015.
  19. Jump up^ Hogan, Brianne (January 20, 2016). "Banking on The Big Short". Creative Screenwriting. Retrieved January 21,2016.
  20. Jump up^ Hogan, Brianne (January 20, 2016). "Banking on The Big Short". Creative Screenwriting. Retrieved January 21,2016.
  21. Jump up to:a b Justin Kroll (January 13, 2015). "Brad Pitt, Christian Bale and Ryan Gosling to Star in Financial Drama ‘The Big Short’ (EXCLUSIVE)"Variety. Retrieved January 14, 2015.
  22. Jump up to:a b Fleming Jr, Mike (April 21, 2015). "‘The Big Short’ Solidifies With Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt"deadline.com. Retrieved May 21, 2015.
  23. Jump up^ "Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, & Christian Bale are headed to Orleans for ‘The Big Short’". onlocationvacations.com. February 10, 2015. Retrieved February 13, 2015.
  24. Jump up^ "‘The Big Short’, starring Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, & Christian Bale, begins filming in New Orleans". onlocationvacations.com. March 23, 2015. RetrievedMarch 29, 2015.
  25. Jump up^ "‘The Big Short’, starring Brad Pitt Ryan Gosling & Christian Bale, filming in Algiers, LA today". onlocationvacations.com. March 25, 2015. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
  26. Jump up^ "'The Big Short', starring Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling, is filming in NYC this week!"onlocationvacations.com. May 16, 2015. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
  27. Jump up to:a b Matthews, Christopher M. (22 May 2015). "'Big Short' Recreates Lehman Bros. Offices in Regulator’s Building".The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
  28. Jump up^ "Paramount pushes 'The Big Short' into awards season".CNS News.
  29. Jump up^ "The Big Short Website"Paramount Pictures.
  30. Jump up^ Pamela McClintock (December 13, 2015). "Box Office: Ron Howard's 'Heart of the Sea' Capsizes With $11M U.S. Debut"The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 13,2015.
  31. Jump up^ Scott Mendelson (December 13, 2015). "Box Office: 'In The Heart Of The Sea' Is A Whale Of A Fail, 'Big Short' Strikes It Rich"Forbes. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  32. Jump up^ "‘Daddy’, ‘Joy’ & ‘Hateful Eight’ Reap Fortune As ‘Star Wars’ Halo Effect Impacts B.O…Can ‘Force Awakens’ Hit $1 Billion In U.S.?"deadline.com.
  33. Jump up^ "The Big Short reviews"Rotten Tomatoes. RetrievedJanuary 20, 2016.
  34. Jump up^ "The Big Short reviews"Metacritic. Retrieved January 19,2016.
  35. Jump up^ "‘Daddy’, ‘Joy’ & ‘Hateful Eight’ Reap Fortune As ‘Star Wars’ Halo Effect Impacts B.O…Can ‘Force Awakens’ Hit $1 Billion In U.S.?"deadline.com.
  36. Jump up^ "The Big Short Review - IGN"IGN. Retrieved2015-12-26.
  37. Jump up^ Irwin, Neil (December 23, 2015). "What ‘The Big Short’ Gets Right, and Wrong, About the Housing Bubble"New York Times. Retrieved December 27, 2015.
  38. Jump up^ Status from Twitter.com/BernieSanders
  39. Jump up^ Bernie Sanders Endorses ‘The Big Short’
  40. Jump up^ The Indiana Film Journalists Association Begins Nominations Process for 2015 Awards

External links[edit]

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