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LA Film Fest Move Downtown Ignites Debate

LA Film Fest Move Downtown Ignites Debate
The Los Angeles Film Festival move from its home in Westwood (which worked well for four years) to downtown Los Angeles is stirring mixed response. It's not dissimilar to the reaction to Film Independent chief Dawn Hudson's taking the Indie Spirit Awards from the beach to downtown. That didn't play so well either. I don't mind going downtown for the occasional museum or concert visit-- but the idea of threading my way through rush hour traffic repeatedly over the course of a festival (June 17 to 27) gives me pause. (David Poland agrees.) UCLA-adjacent college town Westwood, with its cluster of movie theaters was easy to get to, walkable and intimate. I think that while the LAFF believes this will expand their base and accommodate growing attendance, they're taking a serious risk.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 9, 2010 10:12 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Indie Marketing Returns to Word of Mouth

Ex-Fine Line and Picturehouse marketing executive Marian Koltai-Levine founded Zipline Entertainment "to fill the much needed void between content creators and content providers," she says. After attending the recent SXSW Film Festival, Koltai-Levine sent me this essay about the new state of the indies: I am no longer a South By virgin. A couple of weeks later, I’m still jazzed by what I experienced in Austin. I was amazed at the infinite possibilities and the cross-section of media-- technology, music, film and television--being distributed on platforms today.
  • By Marian Koltai-Levine
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  • April 9, 2010 9:34 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Zacharek Leaves Salon for Movieline

Zacharek Leaves Salon for Movieline
Salon film critic Stephanie Zacharek is leaving her gig after 11 years, saying in a thoughtful exit post that she's moving "on to a new adventure elsewhere on the Web."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 9, 2010 8:56 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Miramax and Overture: Gores vs. Weinsteins

Miramax and Overture: Gores vs. Weinsteins
Two sets of brothers are vying for Disney's Miramax library and it looks like the $550-million cash-offer from billionaire Tom and Alec Gores (advised by their Paradigm Agency chief brother Sam) boasts the advantage over the $600-million bid from Harvey and Bob Weinstein, who only look liquid relative to financially-beleaguered third bidder David Bergstein (described by one attorney as the "Enron of the entertainment world"), whose $700-million offer has to be a deluded fantasy, given the fact that a long line of creditors have taken him to bankruptcy court, which actually appointed a trustee for Bergstein's assets.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 9, 2010 5:15 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Doors Doc is Strange Indeed

Doors Doc is Strange Indeed
I started listening to the The Doors when I was about fourteen, and bought every one of their albums. I have great affection for their music, especially Strange Days, at the same time that I often question how seriously to take it.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 8, 2010 12:59 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Nic Cage's House Too Weird to Sell

At a time when the entire state of California seems about to implode, it's tough to feel sorry for the rich and famous who can't manage to live within their magnificent means. Photographer Annie Leibowitz is back in financial trouble. And now Nic Cage----the fifth-ranked movie star on Forbes list with earnings of $40 million last year--has lost one of his many homes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 8, 2010 10:13 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Megan Fox is Hot for Teachers

Shocked by California's $17-billion cuts in education in the past two years, with $2.5 billion more in the offing, Stacey Attanasio-Gonsalves produced a grassroots video with help from parents at L.A.'s Wonderland school "to support the efforts of the California statewide PTA to prompt folks to take action," she wrote in an April 8 email. When she enlisted parent Brian Austin Green and actress Megan Fox (who may be the next Red Sonja) to star in the video, Funny or Die got behind it. The video (below) grabbed 150,000 hits soon after it went live Thursday morning. "Call, write, and annoy the governor until he cries for his Mommy," exhorts Fox.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 8, 2010 7:16 AM
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  • 4 Comments
More: Video

Toddler Plays iPad

Here's a fun video of one smart kid. The iPad is a game-changer for parents. The kid gets that you have to start over every time. When I play with an iPad, I'm stymied by the one-app-at-a-time aspect. I keep wanting to go back to the last one, and I can't. I want it to do what my laptop and BlackBerry can do. Apple sacrificed for speed.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 8, 2010 3:42 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Sandra Bullock Needs to Move On

Sandra Bullock Needs to Move On
My new Career Watch column at AOL Moviefone's Inside Movies looks at Oscar-winner Sandra Bullock. Here's a taste:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 8, 2010 1:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Harrison Ford to Star in Cowboys & Aliens, Tweets Favreau

The new indie mantra is all about DIY marketing via social network groups, Facebook pages, tweets. Killer Films producer Christine Vachon's (@kvpi) 1404 followers know where she is on any given production because she tells them. "Locking the budget on MILDRED PIERCE," she tweeted on Monday. (We also know that she prefers chemo therapy to a root canal.) Certain people get how to play the game.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 7, 2010 8:10 AM
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  • 3 Comments

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