News Nuggets: Was this the most epic battle in ‘Game of Thrones’ history?

Game of Thrones” director Neil Marshall discusses Sunday’s episode “The Watchers on the Wall.” It is called “the most ambitious war sequence in the show’s history.” He says that the mammoth scene was the toughest to create because it is completely CG, and the scene also includes eight-foot-tall giants. Marshall also directed the acclaimed second season episode “Blackwater.” Oddly enough, even though directors like Marshall, Alex Graves, David Nutter, and Alan Taylor have been applauded for their efforts over the years, the only “GOT” episode to be Emmy-nominated was the heavily re-shot pilot (by Timothy Van Patten). Entertainment Weekly.

Steve Pond offers up his 11 “lessons, secrets and revelations” from the release of the Emmy Awards ballots this week. He says that it is better to compete as a comedy series (with just 86 entries) rather than the overstuffed drama series category (108 entries). He notes that only 16 miniseries and 37 TV movies are eligible. Pond was also surprised at the non-entries by “The Good Wife” actors like Michael J. Fox, Stockard Channing, Alan Cumming, and Hunter Parrish. The Wrap.

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Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey will be the 2014 recipient of the American Cinematheque Award. He will be honored in Beverly Hills on October 21 at the benefit gala. He earned the Academy Award earlier this year for “Dallas Buyers Club” and has also received strong acclaim for his recent TV work on “True Detective.” Previous recipients have included Jerry Bruckheimer, Nicole Kidman, Martin Scorsese, and Denzel Washington. L.A. Times.

The fourth annual Critics Choice TV Awards will honor Ryan Murphy with the Louis XIII Genius Award. Murphy is the producer, writer, and director for “American Horror Story,” “Glee,” and the recent TV movie “The Normal Heart.” In another news, the nominees for Most Exciting New Series category (for upcoming projects) are: “Extant,” “Halt and Catch Fire,” “The Leftovers,” “Outlander,” “Penny Dreadful,” and “The Strain.” The ceremony will air live on the CW network and is hosted by Cedric the Entertainer. Deadline.

This year’s Oscar winner for Best Actress, Cate Blanchett, is slated to receive the Women in Film Crystal Award for Excellence in Film this Wednesday. Fellow nominee Amy Adams will present the trophy to her at the event. In addition to the Academy Award, the film “Blue Jasmine‘” also brought Blanchett a Golden Globe, SAG Award, and BAFTA. Variety.

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A new roundtable discussion features six comedic Emmy contenders: Jason Biggs (“Orange is the New Black“), Jesse Tyler Ferguson (“Modern Family“), Tony Hale (“Veep“), Matt LeBlanc (“Episodes“), William H. Macy (“Shameless“), and Andy Samberg (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine“). They discuss their craziest auditions, fears of typecasting, the struggle to land new jobs, and what “bugs” them about comedy today. Hollywood Reporter.

Oscar-winning director Warren Beatty has wrapped his first feature film in almost 20 years. It is an untitled project featuring Beatty as an elderly Howard Hughes, who had an affair with a much younger woman (played by Lily Collins). The $27 million production was financed by Steve Bing, Ron Burkle, Terry Semel, Arnon Milchan, Brett Ratner, and James Packer. Beatty says that it might take him a year to edit the film, which co-stars Alec Baldwin, Annette Bening, Matthew Broderick, and Martin Sheen. Thompson on Hollywood.

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