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Thompson on Hollywood

Micmacs Opens 53rd San Francisco International Film Festival

San Francisco-based writer Meredith Brody, who covered the Berlin Film Festival for TOH, is reporting on the 53rd SFIFF, closer to home.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • April 25, 2010 9:30 AM
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How to Train Your Dragon Roars Past The Back-Up Plan

How to Train Your Dragon came roaring back at the weekend box office, proving that fab word-of-mouth trumps familiar old-hat formulas every time. Jennifer Lopez rom-com The Back-Up Plan came in second, and DC comics movie The Losers was a disaster, coming in fourth behind Date Night. Anthony D'Alessandro dissects the numbers.Never dis a dragon – even at the box office. Paramount-DreamWorks 3D toon How to Train Your Dragon continued to flap its legs, err wings in a murky April weekend session, earning $15 million at 3,665 theaters.  Dragon slipped 23% in its fifth weekend raising its domestic cume to $178 million. Overall, weekend receipts counted an estimated $95 million, off 10-15% from a year ago.  Distribs account the drop to the lack of film product in the market, particularly with Oliver Stone’s Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps moving out of the month.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • April 25, 2010 4:30 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Location Tales at TCM Classic Film Fest, Bios and Film Biz at LAT Fest of Books

This weekend reviews are flowing in from New York's Tribeca, which has been renamed the Alex Gibney Film Festival (per @thefilmcynic). (John Anderson writes him up.) In the middle of the country, folks are enjoying EbertFest (per @ebertchicago), while in LA, both the LATimes Fest of Books (#latfob) and first-ever TCM Classic Film Fest are under way (@ThatRebecca). I was sorry to miss TCM's Jean-Paul Belmondo and Breathless Friday night; Saturday brings Fritz Lang's Complete Metropolis. And both Anjelica and Danny Huston turned up at The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 24, 2010 10:52 AM
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Woody Allen Names New Film Midnight in Paris

When the latest Woody Allen Untitled starts filming this summer in Paris with stars Owen Wilson, Marion Cotillard, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates, Carla Bruni and Michael Sheen, it will actually have a title: Midnight in Paris. The romantic comedy takes a family to Paris. Imagina International Sales is handling international sales for Midnight in Paris at the upcoming Cannes fest, which is showing Allen's You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger out of competition.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 23, 2010 11:18 AM
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Finke vs. Waxman Redux

Here's the deal. Something's got to give in the trade space. Too many people are jostling for dominance in a very crowded pond.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 23, 2010 10:16 AM
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  • 4 Comments
More: Media

Disney's Rich Ross Meets the Press

Disney's Rich Ross Meets the Press
New Disney chairman Richard Ross put on a dog-and-pony show at the Burbank lot Thursday to introduce himself to a group of key entertainment reporters. This is what a new studio chairman does to deal with media requests for interviews and meetings and to alert Wall Street to a strong line-up in advance of an upcoming Disney earnings call. About 20 reporters attended, including the trades. Ross announced the breaking news that Pixar was ramping up a Monsters Inc. sequel for a November 15 2012 release and that Disney was dating their film Brave for June 15, 2012.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 23, 2010 4:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments

IFC Nabs SXSW Prize-Winner Tiny Furniture

IFC Films has acquired North American and multiple foreign rights to the critical hit of SXSW, writer-director-actress Lena Denham's Tiny Furniture, which marks the emergence of a fresh new voice in American indie film. Dunham not only won the narrative feature jury prize but also took home the festival’s breakout award for emerging narrative woman director. She stars in the semi-autobiographical DIY film, which she shot after graduating from Oberlin College, in familiar Manhattan locations on a miniscule budget.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 23, 2010 2:59 AM
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Earth Day Alert: Landmark Theaters Go Green

To celebrate Earth Day--and to do the right thing in general--Landmark Theatres is launching a new line of eco-friendly paper popcorn bags in its 55 theaters. The chain sells almost 2 million bags of popcorn every year.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 22, 2010 10:20 AM
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Howl Finds a Home, Will Smith Looks at Sequels, Live Baseball on PS3, Mags See Uptick

Adam Yauch's Oscilloscope Laboratories has finally acquired U.S. distribution for Sundance opener Howl. O-scope had three nominations at the last Oscars, so the Jeffrey Friedman/Rob Epstein Beat biopic adds a little wind to the distrib's sails. James Franco plays Allen Ginsberg in this historic evocation of the young poet's obscenity trial and off-beat lifestyle.
  • By Cameron Carlson
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  • April 22, 2010 7:12 AM
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Jim Carrey at Crossroads

Jim Carrey at Crossroads
Jim Carrey's A Christmas Carol and Yes Man were box-office disappointments and indie gay romance I Love You Philip Morris is currently on the shelf, caught in a distribution quagmire. What should the 48-year-old comedian do? In my ongoing Inside Movies column, I take a look at his career, from Ace Ventura to a bunch of projects that are in stall mode, from Ripley's Believe It Or Not (with Chris Columbus at Paramount) and The Three Stooges (stuck in development at beleaguered MGM) to Damn Yankees --Todd Graff is doing a rewrite and is set to direct for producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 22, 2010 6:58 AM
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  • 3 Comments

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