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Thompson on Hollywood

Oscar Coverage Round-Up

Oscar Coverage Round-Up
IndieWIRE's Sophia Savage culls the best of the Award coverage leading up to the Big Show Sunday night:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • March 5, 2010 8:39 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Oscar Party Circuit: from Sunset Strip to Gabourey Sidibe

My Oscar party week started out Wednesday night with The Cove at Andaz on Sunset, where Russell Simmons held court and Ben Stiller admitted that he had seen Oscar doc front-runner The Cove three times. On Noah Baumbach's Greenberg, Stiller said it was a huge relief to follow the script, word for word. (One of the Greenberg locations was Baumbach's wife, producer-star Jennifer Jason Leigh's mother's house.) Stiller and Rhys Ifans only improvised one scene, Stiller said.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 5, 2010 7:43 AM
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Avatar Novel and Sequel: Fran Drescher's Audition

Last June producer Jon Landau gave me the flip cam interview below (for a Popular Mechanics Avatar feature I was writing) in the Lightstorm screening room the day he and James Cameron made their big videogame presentation at E3. I was about to see about fifteen minutes of 3-D footage from Avatar--which blew me away. It's hard to recall how nervous and concerned Landau and Fox and Cameron were about selling this unbranded original movie. Remember how badly the first online trailers played on Avatar Day, August 21? The rest, shall we say, is history.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 5, 2010 12:31 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Oscar Scandal: Career Boost for Hurt Locker's Chartier?

Oscar Scandal: Career Boost for Hurt Locker's Chartier?
The Hurt Locker producer Nicolas Chartier insists that he is enjoying his 15 minutes of fame. Late Wednesday night, drink in hand, pool side at Andaz above Sunset at a pre-Oscar party for The Cove, Chartier wasn't acting like a Hollywood pariah.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 4, 2010 6:23 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Indie Spirits Leave Beach for Friday Night Kudocast

I'm not alone in having mixed feelings about the change of time and venue for the Independent Spirit awards this year. Ostensibly a response to both the award show's 25th anniversary (celebrated in this Funny or Die video) and a bid to save money on mounting the beach-tent celebration in Santa Monica, I suspect that Film Independent director Dawn Hudson is drawn like a moth to flame to a chance to broadcast live the awards soiree on a Friday night in prime time (IFC, 8 PM, PT.). And she admits that some of the money saved by not going to the beach was used for a pre-Golden Globes Indie Spirit Nominees brunch.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 4, 2010 3:02 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Tribeca Film Hot Topic

Tribeca Film Hot Topic
The hot topic of conversation at this Friday's Independent Spirit Awards will be the role of film festivals in distribution, as Tribeca Enterprises honchos Jane Rosenthal and ex-Sundance director Geoff Gilmore announce their plans to actively engage in distribution for indie films with backing from investor Jonathan Tisch and American Express. Gilmore has long indicated that this was a direction he wanted to take. Now he's acting on it. (Here's the NYT.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 4, 2010 2:26 AM
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  • 3 Comments

#SXSW: Austin Regular Rodriquez First-Looks Predators

#SXSW: Austin Regular Rodriquez First-Looks Predators
The SXSW attractions are mounting up. Now Austin-local producer Robert Rodriguez and director Nimrod Antal will unveil footage from their upcoming remake of the Schwarzennegger flick Predators on March 12 at the Alamo Ritz at 10 pm. SXSW will also host the world premiere of Géla Babluani’s 13 as part of the SX Fantastic midnight section. The 2010 SXSW takes place March 12 – March 20.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 3, 2010 11:59 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Oscar Week: Parties, Panels, Indie Spirits, Best Oscar Stories, Hurt Locker Lawsuit, Cohen

Oscar Week: Parties, Panels, Indie Spirits, Best Oscar Stories, Hurt Locker Lawsuit, Cohen
I'm plotting my Oscar-week course of action. I must decide which parties and panels and events to cover, and which stories to write when and how. Last year at the Oscar red carpet bleachers I live-blogged in evening garb from my place on a bench with the likes of A.P., Reuters, LAT, and the London Daily Mail, several rows back from the front, took red carpet photos with my Nikon, scrambled down in high heels to the hedge to shoot flip cam interviews, and managed to get out with all my gear except my little black notebook, which was never found.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 3, 2010 6:41 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Woody Allen Sells Stranger to Sony Pictures Classics, Shoots Next in Paris

As expected, Sony Pictures Classics continues to release Woody Allen's Euro-financed pictures, acquiring North American rights to his latest, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, starring Antonio Banderas, Josh Brolin, Anthony Hopkins, Freida Pinto and Naomi Watts. Shot last August in London, the film was financed by Spain's Mediapro, which backed Vicky Cristina Barcelona. SPC also released Allen's Whatever Works in 2009 and Sweet and Lowdown in 1999. Expect a Cannes debut followed by a fall opening stateside.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 3, 2010 3:42 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Twilight Stars Hit Media with Remember Me, Yellow Handkerchief, Runaways, Oscars

Twilight Stars Hit Media with Remember Me, Yellow Handkerchief, Runaways, Oscars
One of the dangers of hitting big in a franchise like Twilight is that that every blessed indie movie that can't get arrested suddenly gets a release. And everyone wants you to do press. Poor Kristen Stewart! After opening Twilight: New Moon last November, she hit Sundance like a freight train in January with the hard-edged drama Welcome to the Rileys and The Runaways, in which she stars as rocker Joan Jett opposite Dakota Fanning as Cherie Currie.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 2, 2010 11:54 AM
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  • 3 Comments

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