The Big Picture

By The Ringer

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 Oct 26, 2018


The Ringer dives into movies as Editor-In-Chief Sean Fennessey sits down with Hollywood’s biggest filmmakers, breaks down the latest industry trends, handicaps the upcoming Oscars race, and reviews new films with Ringer colleagues like Shea Serrano, Amanda Dobbins, and Bill Simmons.

Episode Date
‘Roma,’ ‘The Mule,’ and the Mailbag | The Oscars Show (Ep. 109)

The debate over how to watch ‘Roma’ is starting to obscure actual conversations about ‘Roma’ (1:15), and ‘The Mule’ doesn’t quite make the Oscars cut (9:15). Plus, a mailbag full of questions about ‘A Star Is Born,’ up-and-coming actors, and the future of Netflix’s influence on theaters (13:19).

Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins

Dec 18, 2018
‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’: One of the Best Superhero Movies Ever | Exit Survey (Ep. 108)

Sean Fennessey and Micah Peters recap the surprising highs of the latest installment of the ‘Spider-Man’ universe — an animated film that's also a major achievement in the genre.

Dec 14, 2018
Barry Jenkins on ‘If Beale Street Could Talk’ and Life After ‘Moonlight’ | Interview (Ep. 107)

Oscar-winning director Barry Jenkins returns to 'The Big Picture' to discuss his life and work since ‘Moonlight’ won Best Picture at the Oscars and the unique challenge of recreating 1970s Harlem for his adaptation of James Baldwin’s ‘If Beale Street Could Talk.’

Host: Sean Fennessey

Guest: Barry Jenkins

Dec 13, 2018
The Kevin Hart Fiasco and the Best Performances of 2018 With Wesley Morris | The Oscars Show (Ep. 106)

Kevin Hart is out as host of the Academy Awards after a bungled non-apology tour. What happens next (0:50)? Plus: What the Los Angeles Film Critics Association awards mean for ‘Roma,’ ‘A Star Is Born,’ and the Best Picture race (11:45), and a conversation about the best acting performances of the year with The New York Times’ Wesley Morris (19:30).

Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins

Guest: Wesley Morris

Dec 11, 2018
The Top 10 Films of the Year | Discussion (Ep. 105)

We break down which movies made the final cut for our top 10 lists this year — including everything from ‘Black Panther’ and ‘A Star Is Born’ to ‘Burning,’ ‘Support the Girls,’ ‘Minding the Gap,’ and more.

Host: Sean Fennessey

Guests: Chris Ryan and Adam Nayman

Dec 07, 2018
The Golden Globes Nominations: Surprises and Snubs | The Oscars Show (Ep. 104)

Reacting to the Golden Globes nominations, including surprising love for ‘Vice,’ chaos in the category definitions, pleasant surprises and alarming snubs, and why we love Sandra Oh and Andy Samberg as hosts.

Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins

Dec 06, 2018
John Krasinski on ‘A Quiet Place’ and the Question of a Sequel | Interview (Ep. 103)

Actor, writer, and director John Krasinski joins the show to talk about how he became not just the star, but also the writer-director of the box office smash ‘A Quiet Place,’ how he evolved after ‘The Office,’ and where he’s going next.

Nov 29, 2018
Do the Oscars Need 'Star' Power—and 'Black Panther'—to Thrive? | The Oscars Show (Ep. 102)

Can 'Black Panther' and 'A Star Is Born' power through an onslaught of smaller, highly regarded films like 'Roma,' and 'The Favourite'? (0:57); stock up/stock down for 'Green Book' and 'Widows' (22:00); and a close look at an unusually competitive Best Actress race (34:45).

Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins

Nov 27, 2018
Steven Caple Jr. on ‘Creed II,’ the Rocky Franchise, and Making a Great Sports Movie | Interview (Ep. 101)

‘Creed II’ director Steven Caple Jr. joins the show to talk about Sylvester Stallone’s influence on his filmmaking and the 'Creed' franchise as well as the unique challenges of the 'Rocky' legacy.

Host: Sean Fennessey

Nov 21, 2018
Steve McQueen on ‘Widows’ and Reinventing the Heist Movie | Interview (Ep. 100)

Academy Award–winning director Steve McQueen stops by to discuss his new film, the Viola Davis–starring heist drama ‘Widows.’

Host: Sean Fennessey

Nov 19, 2018
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald | Exit Survey (Ep. 99)

'Binge Mode' meets 'The Big Picture' as Mallory Rubin and Jason Concepcion join Sean Fennessey to react to the second film in Harry Potter’s ‘Fantastic Beasts’ series.

Nov 16, 2018
The Top Five Coen Brothers Films | Discussion (Ep. 98)

With 'The Ballad of Buster Scruggs' set to hit Netflix November 16, Sean Fennessey taps Chris Ryan and Adam Nayman to share and dissect their top five Coen brothers films.

Nov 15, 2018
‘Outlaw King’ Is Netflix’s Foray Into Prestige. Did It Work? | The Oscars Show (Ep. 97)

Dissecting ‘Outlaw King’ and what it means for Netflix’s upcoming releases of ‘The Ballad of Buster Scruggs’ and ‘Roma’ (1:20), stock up/stock down with ‘The Front Runner’ (23:15), and the emerging favorites for the Best Supporting Actress category (36:45).

Now Netflix Wants to Conquer Prestige Movies—and the Oscars. Why? Sean Fennessey

Hosts: Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins

Nov 13, 2018
Body Horror to the Extreme With ‘Overlord’ Director Julius Avery | Interview (Ep. 96)

Sean Fennessey sits down with ‘Overlord’ and ‘Son of a Gun’ director Julius Avery to discuss his winding path from a rough town in Australia to making films in Hollywood. Before the two chat, Chris Ryan joins to assess the amorphous state of mainstream horror and gore films.

Nov 09, 2018
Greg Kinnear on The Bill Simmons Podcast | Interview (Ep. 95)

Bill Simmons sits down with House of Cards actor Greg Kinnear about his pre-acting career and how he made the transition into Hollywood.

Nov 07, 2018
Bohemian Rhapsody I Exit Survey (Ep. 94)

Sean Fennessey is joined by Rob Harvilla to break down the good, the bad, and the Queen of this weekend's box office smash.

Nov 05, 2018
The Top Five Westerns Since 1993 | Discussion (Ep. 93)

In honor of ‘Red Dead Redemption 2,’ Sean Fennessey sits down with Chris Ryan — the Doc Holliday to his Wyatt Earp — to list and discuss their top five Western films of the last two and a half decades.

Clint Eastwood’s ‘Unforgiven’ Closed the Book on Movie Westerns, K. Austin Collins

Nov 02, 2018
Luca Guadagnino on the Gory Glory of 'Suspiria' | Interview (Ep. 92)

Sean Fennessey sits down with director Luca Guadagnino to discuss how his latest film, ‘Suspiria,’ relates to the stories he’s chosen to tell thus far, the moviegoing public’s relationship to ‘Call Me by Your Name,’ and how Bob Dylan may be his next muse.

Nov 01, 2018
Introducing 'The Oscars Show' and the 2018 Oscar Narratives I The Oscars Show (Ep. 91)

Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins kick off The Big Picture’s new Oscars Show with a look at the biggest movies of 2018 and how they would have been viewed through the lens of the now-delayed “Popular Movie” category (1:13). They then discuss whether Claire Foy’s stock is up or down after her performance in ‘First Man’ and the buzz surrounding ‘The Girl in the Spider’s Web’ (17:00) before diving deep into the Best Actor race (30:23).

We Actually Fixed the Oscars, The Big Picture

We’re About to See the Most Competitive Best Actor Oscars Race in Years, Sean Fennessey

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Queen That ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Gets Completely Wrong, Steven Hyden

Oct 30, 2018
The Top 5 Streaming Horror Films Right Now with Bill Simmons | Discussion (Ep. 90)

The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Bill Simmons each run down their lists of five great horror films they love that are streaming right now.

Oct 26, 2018
Paul Dano on Directing His First Film and Adapting Richard Ford's 'Wildlife' | Interview (Ep. 89)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with actor and now screenwriter/director Paul Dano to discuss the trials of directing his first film and adapting one of his favorite authors, Richard Ford.

Oct 25, 2018
The Big Picture: A Ringer Movies Podcast

The Ringer's Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey sits down with Hollywood's biggest filmmakers to discuss how they are shaping the industry. Past guests including directors of Moonlight, Hidden Figures, and OJ: Made in America.

Oct 18, 2018
'The Oath’ and Ike Barinholtz’s Response to the Chaotic News Cycle | The Big Picture (Ep. 88)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey speaks with comedic talent Ike Barinholtz about his directorial debut, ‘The Oath,’ and how it’s a direct response to the breakneck speed of the news cycle since the election.
Oct 12, 2018
‘A Star Is Born’: Instant Analysis | The Big Picture (Ep. 87)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey is joined by colleagues Juliet Litman, Amanda Dobbins, Lindsay Zoladz, and Andrew Gruttadaro to discuss their immediate reactions to the ‘A Star Is Born’ phenomenon—weighing in on Bradley Cooper’s emergence as an auteur, what the film is saying about pop music, the press tour, Lady Gaga, and more.
Oct 08, 2018
David Lowery on Directing Robert Redford's Final Film, 'The Old Man and the Gun' | The Big Picture (Ep. 86)
Ringer Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey is rejoined by filmmaker David Lowery to discuss his new movie 'The Old Man and the Gun,' directing Robert Redford in his final performance, and his knack for crafting modern-day fables.
Sep 28, 2018
Ethan Hawke Will 'Blaze' a Trail as a Director, Too | The Big Picture (Ep. 85)
Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey chats with actor and occasional director Ethan Hawke about his new film 'Blaze,'a biopic about the creative life and tragic death of the musician Blaze Foley.
Sep 21, 2018
Nicole Holofcener, 'The Land of Steady Habits,' and the Characters From Her Own Life | The Big Picture (Ep. 84)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker Nicole Holofcener about her consistent career in film and how she's able to draw on inspiration from her life to create the characters and stories in her movies.
Sep 14, 2018
Michel Gondry Reunites With Jim Carrey in ‘Kidding’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 83)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with with Michel Gondry to discuss his long career in film and reteaming up with Jim Carrey 14 years after ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’ to create the upcoming Showtime series ‘Kidding.’
Sep 07, 2018
Aneesh Chaganty on Leaving Google to Make ‘Searching’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 82)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with first-time filmmaker Aneesh Chaganty to discuss leaving his job at Google to make ‘Searching,' a thriller starring John Cho shot entirely through the POV of screens.
Aug 31, 2018
The Summer Movie Awards | The Big Picture (Ep. 81)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan highlight this summer’s movies by awarding the biggest surprises, best independent films, best scenes, the best and worst movie of the summer, and much more.
Aug 24, 2018
How ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Director Jon M. Chu Earned His Spot | The Big Picture (Ep. 80)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ director Jon M. Chu to talk about his development as a director and how his personal experience as a Chinese American inspired him to make this movie.
Aug 17, 2018
We Actually Fixed the Oscars | The Big Picture (Ep. 79)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey, Bill Simmons, and Amanda Dobbins discuss the recent announcement about upcoming changes to the Academy Awards and debate how to usher the ceremony into the new era.
Aug 09, 2018
Making ‘Mission: Impossible’ the Best Movie Franchise, With Christopher McQuarrie | The Big Picture (Ep. 78)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with ‘Mission: Impossible — Fallout’ director Christopher McQuarrie to talk about his creative collaboration with Tom Cruise, the challenges and rewards of coming back for a second ‘Mission: Impossible’ film, and his personal reckoning with his role as a filmmaker post-‘The Usual Suspects.’
Jul 27, 2018
Bo Burnham’s ‘Eighth Grade’ Captures the Experience of Middle School and Right Now | The Big Picture (Ep. 77)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with comedian and first-time filmmaker Bo Burnham and actress Elsie Fisher to discuss ‘Eighth Grade,’ their perceptive film about the cringeworthy experience of middle school.
Jul 20, 2018
What Inspires Gus Van Sant? | The Big Picture (Ep. 76)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with acclaimed filmmaker Gus Van Sant about his lasting legacy in film, reteaming with Joaquin Phoenix on 'Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot,' the role his late friend Robin Williams played in the film, and where to go when you’ve accomplished so much.
Jul 13, 2018
Boots Riley’s ‘Sorry to Bother You’ Is a Cinematic Acid Trip | The Big Picture (Ep. 75)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with first-time filmmaker and longtime musician Boots Riley about the challenging transition from making music with his group The Coup to making his first feature-length film, the experimental social comedy ‘Sorry to Bother You,’ on his own.
Jul 09, 2018
'Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Goes Big, With Peyton Reed | The Big Picture (Ep. 74)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey speaks with filmmaker Peyton Reed about returning to the Marvel Cinematic Universe to make an Ant-Man sequel and the challenges of merging his story with the aftermath of 'Avengers: Infinity War.'
Jul 06, 2018
Why ‘Sicario’ Needed a Sequel, With Stefano Sollima | The Big Picture (Ep. 73)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan discuss the unlikely 'Sicario' franchise and its approach to violence and morality along the U.S.-Mexico border with ‘Sicario: Day of the Soldado’ director Stefano Sollima.
Jun 29, 2018
Do You Love Scary Dinosaurs? J.A. Bayona’s 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Has Scary Dinosaurs | The Big Picture (Ep. 72)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker J.A. Bayona about his new film, 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,' and what it’s like creating a terrifying new dinosaur and diving into a major franchise.
Jun 22, 2018
‘Incredibles 2’ and Brad Bird’s Super-Powered Return to Pixar | The Big Picture (Ep. 71)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Pixar original Brad Bird about returning to his animation roots with ‘Incredibles 2’ after making live-action movies like ‘Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol’ and ‘Tomorrowland.'
Jun 15, 2018
Morgan Neville’s Mister Rogers Documentary Reminds Us to Be a Good Neighbor | The Big Picture (Ep. 70)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with the Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Morgan Neville about his new film, ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor,’ about one of the world’s foremost champions of kindness and decency, Mister Rogers.
Jun 13, 2018
Hereditary’ Is the Most Disturbing Horror Movie in Years, With Ari Aster | The Big Picture (Ep. 69)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with filmmaker Ari Aster to discuss his first full-length feature, ‘Hereditary,’ and the process of crafting a deeply disturbing experience for moviegoers.
Jun 08, 2018
Truth, Fiction, and a Hollywood Heist Movie, With Bart Layton | The Big Picture (Ep. 68)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with writer-director Bart Layton about his path from unconventional documentaries to his ambitious new docufiction heist movie, ‘American Animals.'
Jun 01, 2018
'Solo: A Star Wars Story’: Instant Analysis | The Big Picture (Ep. 67)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and David Shoemaker convene for an instant-reaction breakdown of the latest 'Star Wars' spin-off movie, ‘Solo,’ to discuss whether Alden Ehrenreich lives up to Harrison Ford’s legacy, how the story’s timelines fit together, and whether the movie actually works.
May 25, 2018
Making ‘First Reformed,’ the Best Movie of the Year So Far, With Paul Schrader | The Big Picture (Ep. 66)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with legendary filmmaker Paul Schrader to discuss his powerful new film, ‘First Reformed,’ starring Ethan Hawke; his patient style of filmmaking, and his major career achievements, such as cocreating ‘Taxi Driver,’ ‘Raging Bull,’ and ‘The Last Temptation of Christ.’
May 21, 2018
Emergency ‘Deadpool 2’ Debate | The Big Picture (Ep. 65)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Andrew Gruttadaro digest the latest blockbuster superhero movie, ‘Deadpool 2,’ by unpacking what worked and what didn’t among the numerous meta jokes and pop culture references. They discuss the long-anticipated arrival of Josh Brolin’s "Cable," why Deadpool is so popular, and where the character and the franchise goes from here.SPOILER ALERT: This episode contains serious spoilers for the movie. Be warned!
May 18, 2018
Making the Melissa McCarthy Machine, With Ben Falcone | The Big Picture (Ep. 64)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with comedic filmmaker Ben Falcone about ‘Life of the Party’—his new movie starring his wife, Melissa McCarthy—and what it’s like to creatively collaborate with his life partner.
May 14, 2018
Jason Reitman Is Not Here to Make a Blockbuster | The Big Picture (Ep. 63)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker Jason Reitman about his early box office success with movies like ‘Juno’ and ‘Up in the Air,’ the complicated nature of making movies that are not meant to be blockbusters in 2018, and his new and terrifying film about parenting, ‘Tully,’ starring Charlize Theron.
May 10, 2018
Emergency ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Breakdown I The Big Picture (Ep. 62)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and David Shoemaker take an exhaustive trip through the galaxy to break down the plot twists, character deaths, and paths forward for the Marvel Cinematic Universe after the action-packed, plot-heavy ‘Avengers: Infinity War.’ SPOILER ALERT: The second half of this episode contains serious spoilers for the movie. Be warned!
Apr 27, 2018
William Friedkin Meets a Real-Life ‘Exorcist’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 61)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with legendary filmmaker Willam Friedkin, who’s responsible for films such as 'The French Connection,' 'The Exorcist,' 'Sorcerer,' and 'To Live and Die in L.A.' Friedkin discusses his distinguished career in film and why, at 82, he decided to create a new documentary about a real-life exorcism called 'The Devil and Father Amorth.'
Apr 23, 2018
4/20 Special: Jay Chandrasekhar’s ‘Super Troopers’ Return | The Big Picture (Ep. 60)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with comedic actor, director, and writer Jay Chandrasekhar about returning to make a ‘Super Troopers’ sequel 17 years after the original. Chandrasekhar also discusses what it’s like being an Indian American in Hollywood, returning to his roots, and bridging the divided audiences in comedy.More from Sean Fennessey on Movies
Apr 20, 2018
Life and Death in the American West With ‘Lean on Pete’ Director Andrew Haigh | The Big Picture (Ep. 58)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker Andrew Haigh about his emotionally devastating ‘Lean on Pete,’ about an orphaned boy (Charlie Plummer) and his horse, the titular Pete, and their journey from Oregon to Wyoming in search of a long-lost family member. Haigh also discusses his long career as a director and the difference between making TV shows and making movies.
Apr 13, 2018
'Blockers’ and the Revival of the Studio Comedy With Kay Cannon | The Big Picture (Ep. 58)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with Kay Cannon, the veteran screenwriter on ‘30 Rock,' New Girl,’ and all three ‘Pitch Perfect’ movies to discuss her new R-rated studio comedy and directorial debut ‘Blockers’ and her transition from writing to directing.
Apr 06, 2018
Steven Spielberg's Top 5 Movies With Bill Simmons and Chris Ryan | The Big Picture (Ep. 57)
In preparation for Steven Spielberg's ‘Ready Player One,’ The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan discuss and debate the prolific filmmaker's best movies of all time. They cover everything from ‘Jaws’ to ‘Jurassic Park,’ from the ‘Indiana Jones’ series to ‘Saving Private Ryan,’ and many, many more (1:00). And later, CEO of The Ringer Bill Simmons stops by to give his take on how terrifying 'Jaws' was and Spielberg's career (43:00).Ringer web store
Mar 30, 2018
Cults, Sex, and the American Dream in 'Wild Wild Country' I The Big Picture (Ep. 56)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with 'Wild Wild Country' directors Maclain and Chapman Way and producer Mark Duplass about the arduous process of making an in-depth documentary that features a 64,000-acre ranch in Oregon, a spiritual guru, ritualistic group sex, assassination plots, guns, drugs, and bioterrorism.You can find the official Ringer web store here:
Mar 27, 2018
The Best Movies at the SXSW Film Festival | The Big Picture (Ep. 55)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan recap the best movies they saw at the SXSW Film Festival, including ‘Ready Player One,’ ‘A Quiet Place,’ ‘Eighth Grade,’ and more.
Mar 16, 2018
Cory Finley Breaks From the Stage with ‘Thoroughbreds’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 54)
Ringer Editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with first time director Cory Finley about his film ‘Thoroughbreds’ and his transition from playwright to filmmaker.
Mar 09, 2018
Jennifer Lawrence’s ‘Red Sparrow’ Transformation With Francis Lawrence | The Big Picture (Ep. 53)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker Francis Lawrence about making ‘Red Sparrow,’ his fourth film in a row starring Jennifer Lawrence; their working relationship forged through ‘The Hunger Games’ movie franchise; and his new creative venture with Apple TV.More on movies from the Ringer
Mar 02, 2018
Is ‘Three Billboards’ Actually Just ‘Crash’ 2.0? Plus, Other Oscars Takes | The Big Picture (Ep. 52)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with The Ringer’s Amanda Dobbins and K. Austin Collins and New York Times critic Wesley Morris to discuss eerie similarities between ‘Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri’ and the notorious 2006 Best Picture winner, ‘Crash’ (0:00). Then, Chris Ryan joins to discuss ‘Shape of Water’ and its status as the clear front-runner to win Best Picture (0:00).More on the Oscars from The Ringer:
Feb 27, 2018
'Annihilation,’ ‘Ex Machina,’ and Alex Garland’s Disturbing Sci-Fi Vision | The Big Picture (Ep. 51)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey speaks with acclaimed writer and director Alex Garland about the making of the Natalie Portman sci-fi thriller ‘Annihilation’ and the tricky nature of adapting Jeff VanderMeer’s best-selling book. They also discuss Garland’s first film, ‘Ex Machina’; his time as a novelist and screenwriter of movies like ‘28 Days Later...’ and ‘Sunshine’; and a lot more.For more movie coverage, check out The Ringer
Feb 23, 2018
Yance Ford Made ‘Strong Island’ to Face Down the Past | The Big Picture (Ep. 50)
Ringer Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey speaks with Academy Award-nominated documentarian Yance Ford about making Netflix’s ‘Strong Island,’ a personal film about the tragic murder of his brother, William, and the larger implications in the story about segregation, race, violence, and power.
Feb 19, 2018
Why Stop-Motion Animation Takes Forever to Make, With Nick Park | The Big Picture (Ep. 49)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with ‘Wallace and Gromit’ creator and Academy Award–winning animation director Nick Park to discuss the time-consuming process of making stop-motion animation, his commitment to the form, and his new underdog cavemen comedy, ‘Early Man.’
Feb 16, 2018
The Rise of Alex Ross Perry: From the Art House to the Mouse House | The Big Picture (Ep. 48)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey speaks with filmmaker Alex Ross Perry about his quick-and-cheap working style and his shift from art house movies like his latest, ‘Golden Exits,’ to his upcoming big-budget ‘Winnie the Pooh’ adaptation for Disney.
Feb 12, 2018
'Icarus’ Filmmaker Bryan Fogel on Why Russia Won’t Be at the Olympics | The Big Picture (Ep. 47)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with filmmaker Bryan Fogel to discuss his Academy Award–nominated documentary, ‘Icarus.’ Fogel explains how his journey into the world of blood doping and cycling was transformed into a larger story about the state-run Russian Olympic doping program.
Feb 09, 2018
The Art of True Crime Documentary with Erin Lee Carr | The Big Picture (Ep. 46)
Ringer Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey speaks with documentarian Erin Lee Carr (‘Mommy Dead and Dearest’) about her new project “Drug Short,” an installment in Netflix’s new doc series ‘Dirty Money’ and why she’s drawn to grim and morally gray stories.
Feb 02, 2018
Oscar Season: The Snubs and Surprises of the Academy Awards Nominations | The Big Picture (Ep. 45)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey, Amanda Dobbins, and K. Austin Collins react to the 2018 Oscar nominations. They break down the front-runners, the most shocking snubs, and what to look forward to come March 4. Also: the Academy’s apparent love of fish sex.
Jan 23, 2018
Making Kick-Ass Liam Neeson Movies With Director Jaume Collet-Serra | The Big Picture (Ep. 44)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with director Jaume Collet-Serra to discuss teaming up with movie star Liam Neeson for a fourth time in his new movie, ‘The Commuter’; the difficulties of shooting a movie in a confined space; and why he keeps coming back to genre films.
Jan 12, 2018
The Urgency of ‘The Post’ With Screenwriters Liz Hannah and Josh Singer | The Big Picture (Ep. 43)
The Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with first-time screenwriter Liz Hannah and Academy Award-winning scribe Josh Singer about 'The Post,' their collaboration for Steven Spielberg about the men and women who published the Pentagon Papers in The Washington Post.
Dec 29, 2017
The Best Movies of 2017 | The Big Picture (Ep. 42)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey, Chris Ryan, Amanda Dobbins and K. Austin Collins rank and debate the best movies of 2017.
Dec 22, 2017
‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Is Just the Beginning for Rian Johnson | The Big Picture (Ep. 41)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with writer-director Rian Johnson about making ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi,’ putting his own spin on the franchise, and his upcoming spinoff trilogy.
Dec 18, 2017
Was 2007 the Best Year for Film? | The Big Picture (Ep. 40)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey, Chris Ryan, and Andy Greenwald go back to 2007 to discuss the most fascinating year for movies in recent memory.
Dec 15, 2017
Sean Baker’s Wondrous ‘The Florida Project’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 39)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Sean Baker, who was recently awarded Best Director by the New York Film Critics Circle for his latest film, ‘The Florida Project.’ They discuss how Baker tells authentic stories about underrepresented communities, his use of inexperienced actors, and why he prefers making smaller-budget films.
Dec 08, 2017
Errol Morris's Catnip for Conspiracy Theorists | The Big Picture (Ep. 38)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with documentarian Errol Morris to discuss his new Netflix miniseries ‘Wormwood,’ a story of mind control, LSD, the CIA in the 1950s, and murder. They also discuss Morris’s classic works like ‘The Thin Blue Line,’ as well as the day he spent with Donald Trump to discuss the president’s favorite film, 'Citizen Kane.'
Dec 01, 2017
Joe Wright Bounces Back From His Darkest Hour | The Big Picture (Ep. 37)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with director Joe Wright to discuss how he picked himself up after the failure of his 2015 film, ‘Pan,’ to deliver ‘Darkest Hour,’ a Winston Churchill biopic that stars a mesmerizing Gary Oldman. Plus: Wright discusses the changing state of the movie business and why he took the reins on an episode of ‘Black Mirror.’
Nov 22, 2017
The Past, Present, and Future of Superhero Movies | The Big Picture (Ep. 35)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey is joined by fellow Ringer staffers and comic book enthusiasts Jason Concepcion and David Shoemaker to discuss the evolution, the current state, and the future of the movie universes of DC and Marvel.
Nov 17, 2017
Greta Gerwig on ‘Lady Bird,’ One of the Year’s Best Movies | The Big Picture (Ep. 34)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with actor, writer, and director Greta Gerwig to discuss her critically acclaimed film ‘Lady Bird.’ Gerwig shares her years-long writing process, how she casts actors, and a defense of Dave Matthews Band.
Nov 13, 2017
Passing Time With Richard Linklater | The Big Picture (Ep. 33)
Richard Linklater to discuss the impact of war in his new film, ‘Last Flag Flying,’ as well as his tendency to creatively revisit his previous films over time, like with ‘Dazed and Confused,' ‘Before Midnight,’ and ‘Boyhood’ (1:00). Linklater also discusses the state of sexual harassment news in Hollywood (28:00).
Nov 10, 2017
How to Make a Marvel Movie Funny With ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Director Taika Waititi | The Big Picture (Ep. 32)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Taika Waititi about his transition from small indie comedies in New Zealand to Marvel’s big-budget superhero epic ‘Thor: Ragnarok.’
Nov 03, 2017
Ruben Östlund Is Trying to Provoke You | The Big Picture (Ep. 31)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with filmmaker Ruben Östlund about his new film, ‘The Square,’ satirizing the art world, and why he enjoys toying with audiences.
Oct 27, 2017
Todd Haynes on Growing Up and Going ‘Wonderstruck’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 30)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with filmmaker Todd Haynes to discuss his journey of making movies as a child to channeling youth and finding children to star in his latest film, ‘Wonderstruck.’
Oct 20, 2017
Noah Baumbach and Capturing the American Family | The Big Picture (Ep. 29)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with writer-director Noah Baumbach to discuss his new film, ‘The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)’; creating a serious role for Adam Sandler; Netflix purchasing his film; and how he captures the American family.
Oct 16, 2017
Darren Aronofsky on Pushing the Envelope | The Big Picture (Ep. 28)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with filmmaker Darren Aronofsky to discuss his polarizing film, ‘Mother!,’ and the art of putting both his characters and the audience under duress.
Oct 11, 2017
Stephen Frears and the Inner Workings of the Royal Family | The Big Picture (Ep. 27)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins break down their favorite films about the British royal family (1:00) before Sean sits down with acclaimed director Stephen Frears to discuss his new film ‘Victoria and Abdul,’ making films about the royals, and his longevity in the industry (10:00).
Sep 29, 2017
Dissecting 'Mother!,' the Most Controversial Movie of the Year | The Big Picture (Ep. 26)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey, Amanda Dobbins, and K. Austin Collins attempt to wrap their heads around Darren Aronofsky’s controversial new film, ‘Mother!’
Sep 22, 2017
Danny Strong and the Recipe for a Classic Biopic | The Big Picture (Ep. 25)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey and executive editor Chris Ryan reveal their favorite biopics and hash out what makes them great (1:00). Then, Sean sits down with writer, actor, and director Danny Strong to discuss his recent J.D. Salinger biopic, ‘Rebel in the Rye,’ and how doubling down on his passion paid off (12:00).
Sep 15, 2017
'It' Director Andy Muschietti on Adapting Stephen King | The Big Picture (Ep. 24)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Kate Knibbs about Stephen King’s classic horror novel ‘It’ (0:30) before sitting down with Andy Muschietti, who discusses adapting the book for the screen and re-creating the terrifying character Pennywise (6:20).
Sep 08, 2017
Jay Baruchel’s Directorial Debut and Making an Authentic Hockey Movie | The Big Picture (Ep. 23)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Katie Baker about the best hockey films ever made (0:30) before he sits down with actor and now director Jay Baruchel about making his first film, 'Goon: Last of the Enforcers'; hockey fandom; and filming the perfect hockey fight (6:00).
Sep 01, 2017
Janicza Bravo and Brett Gelman Channel Rejection and Anxiety to Make ‘Lemon’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 22)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey chats with Alison Herman about Janicza Bravo’s approach to uncomfortable comedy and her direction of “Juneteenth,” the instant-classic episode of ‘Atlanta’ (1:00). Then Sean sits down with Bravo and her husband/producing partner, Brett Gelman, to discuss the tumultuous five-year process of getting their film ‘Lemon’ into the world (10:00).
Aug 18, 2017
The Safdie Brothers and ‘Good Time,’ an Instant New York Classic | The Big Picture (Ep. 21)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and K. Austin Collins discuss the Safdie Brothers’ new crime film, ‘Good Time.’ (0:30) Then, Sean sits down with the Josh and Benny Safdie to discuss making a movie starring Robert Pattinson, capturing New York City on-screen, and the frenetic pace of ‘Good Time’ (11:00).
Aug 11, 2017
Taylor Sheridan, 'Wind River,' and How to Write a Killer Movie | The Big Picture (Ep. 20)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan discuss screenwriter Taylor Sheridan’s films ‘Sicario,’ ‘Hell or High Water,’ and his new film, ‘Wind River,’ starring Jeremy Renner (0:40). Then, Sean and Sheridan discuss 'Wind River,' how he depicts raw and realistic scenarios in his movies, and why he decided to get behind the camera (11:00).
Aug 04, 2017
Jenny Slate, Gillian Robespierre, and Elisabeth Holm on ‘Landline’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 19)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Amanda Dobbins discuss Gillian Robespierre’s ‘Obvious Child’ (0:10) and her new film, ‘Landline.’ Then Sean is joined by Robespierre, Jenny Slate, and Elisabeth Holm to discuss growing up in the ’90s, the sacrifices of independent filmmaking, and collaborating on their second project together (10:00).
Jul 21, 2017
Matt Reeves Puts Humanity in ‘The Planet of the Apes’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 18)
The Ringer’s Sean Fennessey and Chris Ryan discuss the successes and failures of filmmakers who have recently overseen big-budget franchises, such as Matt Reeves’s ‘Planet of the Apes’ series, Michael Bay’s ‘Transformers’ series, and Christopher Nolan’s sustained run (1:05). Later, Sean sits down with Matt Reeves to discuss the intricate filmmaking process of ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ and what to expect from his next movie, ‘The Batman’ (13:30).
Jul 14, 2017
David Lowery’s Strange and Beautiful ‘A Ghost Story’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 17)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey and Vanity Fair film critic Richard Lawson discuss filmmaker David Lowery’s latest, ‘A Ghost Story,’ an unconventional film with an unconventional debut at Sundance (1:00). Later, Sean chats with Lowery about the making of the movie and why he no longer watches his movies or reads his reviews (9:30).
Jul 06, 2017
Female-Powered Comedy With ‘Rough Night’ Creators Lucia Aniello and Paul W. Downs | The Big Picture (Ep. 16)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey and staff writer Lindsay Zoladz discuss the dearth of female filmmakers in the R-rated comedy space (2:00) before Sean chats with the ‘Rough Night’ writing and directing team of Lucia Aniello and Paul W. Downs about meeting at the UCB Theatre, developing ‘Broad City,’ and making a studio comedy starring big names like Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon, and Zoë Kravitz (17:00).
Jun 16, 2017
Modern Horror and ‘It Comes at Night’ Director Trey Edward Shults | The Big Picture (Ep. 15)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey and film critic K. Austin Collins discuss the emergence of modern horror films like ‘The Witch’ and the increasing emphasis on tone over standard horror tropes (1:00). Then, Sean is joined by Trey Edward Shults, who explains how working through his own darkness led to making his latest film, ‘It Comes At Night’ (15:50).
Jun 08, 2017
Amy Schumer’s Career Arc, and ‘Snatched’ Director Jonathan Levine | The Big Picture (Ep. 14)
Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey discusses comedic storytelling and Amy Schumer’s career arc, from stand-up comedian to movie star, with Jason Zinoman of The New York Times (0:50). Then Sean is joined by filmmaker Jonathan Levine (‘The Wackness,’ ‘50/50’) to discuss collaborating with Schumer on his new comedy, ‘Snatched’, his own career arc, finding his path, and dealing with bad reviews (14:20).
Jun 01, 2017
Doug Liman on ‘The Wall’ and Making Movies His Way | The Big Picture (Ep. 13)
May 15, 2017
Guy Ritchie and the Challenges of Making ‘King Arthur’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 12)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey and executive editor Chris Ryan explore the career arc of renowned director Guy Ritchie (0:30) before sitting down with Ritchie (10:00) to discuss the challenges of making his new film, King Arthur, and his personal philosophies surrounding fear, results, and self-confidence.

May 11, 2017
‘Sleight’ Director J.D. Dillard | The Big Picture (Ep. 11)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with first-time director J.D. Dillard to discuss how he went from dropping out of school to being on the set of The Force Awakens with J.J. Abrams to debuting his first film, Sleight, at Sundance. Dillard also talks about helming the long-rumored reboot of The Fly.

Apr 28, 2017
'Free Fire’ Director Ben Wheatley | The Big Picture (Ep. 10)

Ringer Editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with director Ben Wheatley to discuss his latest film, Free Fire (0:10), getting sought out by star actors and directors like Armie Hammer and Martin Scorsese (6:40), and striking a balance between entertaining and traumatizing an audience (14:40).

Apr 21, 2017
‘The Lost City of Z’ Director James Gray | The Big Picture (Ep. 9)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with acclaimed director James Gray to discuss the high stakes of filming his new movie, The Lost City of Z, in the jungle, the near-impossible task of making a classic film, and why he isn’t interested in making a television series.

Apr 13, 2017
Jake Johnson and Joe Swanberg on Their New Film ‘Win It All’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 8)

The Ringer’s Chris Ryan and Sean Fennessey sit down with actor Jake Johnson and director Joe Swanberg to discuss their new gambling film Win It All, why they wanted to make a movie for Netflix, and what it’s like teaming up for multiple projects.

Apr 07, 2017
‘The Discovery’ Director Charlie McDowell | The Big Picture (Ep. 7)

The Ringer's Editor-in-Chief Sean Fennessey sits down with director Charlie McDowell to discuss his new film The Discovery (1:55), casting Robert Redford (12:58), being one of Netflix's first major features (21:05) and how to pull off an ending with a twist (18:45).

Mar 31, 2017
Interview With 'Get Out' Director Jordan Peele | The Big Picture (Ep. 6)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with writer-director Jordan Peele (of 'Key & Peele' fame) to discuss his new hit film, 'Get Out,' how and why he made it, and its overwhelmingly positive reception. Peele also talks about ideas for alternate scenes and endings as well as his reasoning behind some of the movie's most pivotal moments.

Mar 09, 2017
'A Cure for Wellness' Director Gore Verbinski on Making Something Outside the Box and the Future of the Industry | The Big Picture (Ep. 5)

Gore Verbinski has been directing movies for two decades now, including The Ring, Rango, The Lone Ranger, and the first three Pirates of the Caribbean features. His latest picture, A Cure for Wellness, breaks away from big-budget Hollywood features with a lesser-known cast and unique premise. On the latest Channel 33 episode, he spoke with Sean Fennessey about the joy in making something different and the future of the industry.

Feb 17, 2017
Barry Jenkins on Crafting the Sincerity of ‘Moonlight’ | The Big Picture (Ep. 4)

Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight is one of the heavyweights in this year’s Academy Awards race, racking up eight nominations. The film was the first movie for Jenkins in eight years, and provided particular challenges due to limited funding and time. One way he overcame those obstacles and made his movie unique was by casting non-actors alongside actors, something he discussed with Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey.

Feb 09, 2017
Interview With ‘O.J.: Made in America’ Director Ezra Edelman | The Big Picture (Ep. 3)

Ringer editor-in-chief Sean Fennessey sits down with filmmaker Ezra Edelman to discuss the making of O.J.: Made in America, his epic eight-hour Oscar-nominated documentary examining O.J. Simpson’s rise and fall through the lens of race, place, celebrity, and time.

Feb 03, 2017
Interview With ‘20th Century Women’ Director Mike Mills | The Big Picture (Ep. 2)

Mike Mills’s past two films — Beginners and 20th Century Women — have both been semi-autobiographical. Beginners focuses on Mills’s father, who came out at age 75 shortly before his death, while 20th Century Women is based on Mills’s mother as a way to look at the 1970s. On Channel 33, Sean Fennessey talked to Mills about his experience making the films, and how he blends his own childhood with his art.

Jan 19, 2017
Interview With 'Hidden Figures' Director Ted Melfi | The Big Picture (Ep. 1)

The Ringer's Sean Fennessey sits down with Ted Melfi to discuss the success of his latest film, Hidden Figures (1:10), and how it came about (3:19), as well as the difficulties of making an entertaining movie about math (8:00). Melfi also shares what it's like working with Taraji P. Henson (18:27) and Kevin Costner (21:15), getting Pharrell to score his movie (29:20), and how he feels about the "Hidden Fences" mishap (38:45).

Jan 13, 2017