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Thompson on Hollywood

Holiday Movie Watching: Aamir Khan's 3 Idiots Hits Big

Holiday Movie Watching: Aamir Khan's 3 Idiots Hits Big
Like everybody else, I've been catching up on movies over the holidays. By far the most fun movie was the big-budget Bollywood comedy 3 Idiots, starring 44-year-old Aamir Khan as a geeky engineering student.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 30, 2009 9:30 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Sherlock Holmes vs. Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

Sherlock Holmes vs. Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
One is slick, the other isn't.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 30, 2009 12:57 AM
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  • 9 Comments

Oscar Watch: Voting for Ten Instead of Five

Oscar Watch: Voting for Ten Instead of Five
I'm having a devil of a time figuring out what this year's Oscar nominations for best picture are going to be. As the ballots are going out, I usually have a fair idea of the final five. But this year there are ten best picture slots instead of five. If voters had trouble coming up with their top five in the past, won't they have even more trouble filling out a ballot with ten?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 29, 2009 11:10 AM
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  • 2 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

Polanski Posts Holiday Greetings

Roman Polanski is under house arrest, spending the holidays with his family at his ski chalet while waiting to hear about his fate. He posted at the website of French philosopher pal Bernard Henri-Levy this public response to the cards and letters he's received:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 29, 2009 12:13 AM
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  • 2 Comments
More: Directors, News

Spike Lee Directs Michael Jackson Homage

Spike Lee Directs Michael Jackson Homage
I finally caught up with Kenny Ortega's Michael Jackson rehearsal film, This is It. I see why people like it so much--Jackson still had more chops than most people dream of. But the movie's strength--its bare-bones straight-on simplicity--is a weakness for Oscar voters. I don't see them loving the filmmaking so passionately that they put it on their Oscar ballot.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 11:02 AM
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  • 2 Comments
More: Video

Previews 2010: Inception, Iron Man 2, Toy Story 3

Surprise! The most-viewed trailers of 2009 were also among the year's biggest b.o. grossers. Among some of the anticipated movies of 2010 are two Leonardo DiCaprio movies--Chris Nolan's Inception and Martin Scorsese's pushed-back Shutter Island--as well as Pixar's latest, Toy Story 3. More trailers and clips are on the jump.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 10:00 AM
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  • 0 Comments

AFI Moments of Significance for 2009

AFI Moments of Significance for 2009
I've served on several past American Film Institute film juries. We meet one day in December and not only pick the year's ten best American films but also engage in a spirited discussion about the most significant industry trends-- in TV, film and the web-- of that year. The 13-member TV and film juries are unusual, in mixing academics, journalists and filmmakers.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 9:31 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Academy Mails 5777 Oscar Ballots, Due January 23

Academy Mails 5777 Oscar Ballots, Due January 23
On Monday December 28, the Academy mailed out Oscar nomination ballots to 5,777 voting members. They ask that completed ballots be returned to PricewaterhouseCoopers by 5 p.m. on Saturday, January 23, 2010. According to the Academy, PricewaterhouseCoopers makes sure "that all aspects of the balloting process are conducted with fairness and accuracy":
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 8:31 AM
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  • 0 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

If Critics Ruled the Oscars (They Don't): Avatar Heads for Nine Noms

If Critics Ruled the Oscars (They Don't): Avatar Heads for Nine Noms
Time's Richard Corliss has figured out a clever way to write about year-end critics awards and tee up a clickable gallery of Oscar hopefuls, short and sweet. Trouble is, he gives way too much credit to the critics. They do help to clue the Academy voters into what films they should watch on their screener piles. But in the end, what the voters think when they watch the movies is what matters---as well as how passionate they feel as they vote for their top ten best picture candidates. The ones at the top of the list get more weight than the ones at the bottom. Thus, if most voters put The Last Station, Nine, The Messenger, Star Trek and District 9 at the bottom, they won't make it.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 7:29 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Kennedy and the Naked Babes: A Playboy Shoot!

TMZ said it tested this creased 1950s snapshot showing a man who looks a lot like John F. Kennedy hanging on a yacht with naked babes, and found no evidence of tampering.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2009 6:12 AM
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  • 0 Comments
More: News, Media

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