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Thompson on Hollywood

Weekend Box Office Showdown: Cowboys & Aliens Edges Out Smurfs; Crazy, Stupid, Love Scores UPDATED

Weekend Box Office Showdown: Cowboys & Aliens Edges Out Smurfs; Crazy, Stupid, Love Scores UPDATED
Star-studded sci-fi western Cowboys & Aliens was expected to handily win the weekend box office, but had to scuffle with family-friendly The Smurfs for the top spot. Anthony D'Alessandro reports:In a shootout at the cinema corral, Sony’s The Smurfs ambushed Universal’s co-production Cowboys & Aliens for the No. 1 spot, with both studios splitting their gold nuggets at an estimated $36.2 million apiece. Family films kicking fanboys in the pants is nothing new: back in March, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules pulled the rug out from under Sucker Punch.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • July 31, 2011 4:47 AM
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  • 6 Comments

TCA: Crowe Talks Pearl Jam, We Bought A Zoo's Sigur Ros, Return of Say Anything's Lloyd Dobler

TCA: Crowe Talks Pearl Jam, We Bought A Zoo's Sigur Ros, Return of Say Anything's Lloyd Dobler
Director Cameron Crowe took the microphone during the Television Critics Association press tour to promo his latest film, a documentary; Amy Dawes reports.Fresh from postproduction on We Bought A Zoo starring Matt Damon, filmmaker Cameron Crowe showed up at TCA on Saturday to support his galvanizing music documentary Pearl Jam Twenty, which screened late Friday for critics at the press tour.
  • By Amy Dawes
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  • July 31, 2011 1:15 AM
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Von Trier Talks Dogville Influence on Norway Massacre

Von Trier Talks Dogville Influence on Norway Massacre
Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier finds himself at the center of yet another controversy. This time his film Dogville appears to have partly inspired extremist Anders B. Breivik, who is accused of executing a killing spree that left 69 people dead in Norway, reports Hollywood Elsewhere, who quotes some of von Trier's comments in an interview with Nils Thoren of Denmark's Politiken:Breivik's Facebook page listed Dogville as his third favorite film right behind Gladiator and 300, and "even von Trier could easily discern the similarities between the carnage at Utoya and the film's ending," Thoren writes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 30, 2011 8:51 AM
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More: Politics, Media

Trailer Watch: George Lucas's World War II Aerial Ballet Red Tails Debuts January 20

Trailer Watch: George Lucas's World War II Aerial Ballet Red Tails Debuts January 20
We've been waiting a while for producer George Lucas's take on the World War II Tuskegee airmen, now set for release by Twentieth Century Fox on January 20, 2012. Anthony Hemingway (Treme, The Wire, Battlestar Galactica) directs a script by John Ridley (Three Kings) and a sprawling ensemble led by Cuba Gooding Jr. (Jerry Maguire), Terrence Howard (Iron Man), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), David Oyelowo (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) and Andre Royo (The Wire). Produced by Rick McCallum and Charles Floyd Johnson, the film boasts a score by frequent Spike Lee composer Terence Blanchard.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 30, 2011 8:29 AM
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Rotten Tomatoes Founder Launches Movies with Butter

Four years after leaving Rotten Tomatoes, founder Senh Duong is launching yet another movie site called MoviesWithButter.com. (He also founded newspaper rack site Wopular.) The website allows movie enthusiasts to track the latest developments of upcoming movies by title, director, actor or development stage.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 29, 2011 12:00 PM
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Sundance Institute Pushes Deeper Into Digital Distribution Alternatives--Analysis

Sundance Institute Pushes Deeper Into Digital Distribution Alternatives--Analysis
Two things pop from this week's announcement from Robert Redford's Sundance Institute about their "Artists Services Initiative." First, who it's for--Sundance Institute filmmakers only--and second, how it contrasts with Robert De Niro's for-profit New York-based Tribeca Films, which picks up films to release, some of them from its own festival.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 29, 2011 8:51 AM
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Kounelias Joins Academy as Chief Marketing Officer

Kounelias Joins Academy as Chief Marketing Officer
Academy CEO Dawn Hudson has hired veteran marketing executive Christina Kounelias to the new post of chief marketing officer for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Kounelias will assume her new role on August 1 and will report directly to Hudson, who is moving swiftly to bring in her own people, and will not rely strictly on the folks already there, many of them for some years. In this new position, Kounelias will oversee all planning, strategy and marketing execution of Academy initiatives including its signature Oscar telecast, the Governors Awards and year-round educational outreach and screening programs. The marketing, communications and online staff will report to her.Kounelias has been a member of the Academy for nine years.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 29, 2011 8:16 AM
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Polanski's Carnage Will Open New York Film Festival, Hits Theaters in December

Now we know what the 49th New York Film Festival opener on September 30 will be: Roman Polanski's Carnage. It's an odd choice, because needless to say, the director himself will not be able to attend, given his status as an exile. (That's what satellite feeds are for.) Based on Yasmina Reza's 2009 Tony-Award-winning Broadway play God of Carnage, the movie stars Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster, John C. Reilly and Christoph Waltz as two couples battling over their children, who had a fight on a playground, and the health of their respective marriages. (More photos here.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 29, 2011 8:05 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Marion Cotillard: Boobs on the Brain

Did you know that lab tests prove that Forehead Tittaes actually redirect the male gaze from the chest to the brain?
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • July 29, 2011 6:12 AM
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Media Watch: Amazon Streaming Goes Universal, Netflix vs. Hulu User Behavior, Fighting Piracy

Amazon is teaming up with NBC Universal to stream movies to subscribers, continuing its direct competition with Netflix. THR reports that Amazon now offers 9,000 movies and TV shows to its subscribers—Prime customers who pay $79.00 a year (compared to Netflix’s annual $96, for many more options). This after Amazon struck a similar deal with CBS last week. Movies and TV shows to stream include Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Fletch, Cheers, Frasier, and Star Trek.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • July 29, 2011 5:42 AM
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