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Thompson on Hollywood

Ronni Chasen Case Closed; Publicist Killed With Policeman's Stolen Gun

The Wrap has published a report on the closed case of publicist Ronni Chasen's death. The Beverly Hills Police confirmed that she was killed by a gun stolen from a police officer. Chasen was killed on November 16 on Sunset Boulevard while driving home from the premiere afterparty for Burlesque.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 15, 2011 8:36 AM
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Harry Potter 8's First Day at the Box Office: Will the Weekend Slay Dark Knight's Record?

Harry Potter 8's First Day at the Box Office: Will the Weekend Slay Dark Knight's Record?
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 charted a record midnight domestic estimate of $43.5 million from 3,800 sites, unseating previous champ The Twilight Saga: Eclipse which had earned $30 million in the slot, reports Anthony D'Alessandro.Bowing abroad on Wednesday in 26 countries, Deathly Hallows: Part 2 collected $43.6 million from 24 countries, Today, stateside, the film unspools in 4,300 venues--70% (or 3,000) of which are 3-D. Of these, 275 are IMAX hubs. While earlier projections saw Deathly Hallows: Part 2 becoming the third-highest weekend opener of all-time, the town is now predicting that the film will kick The Dark Knight's all-time Friday-Sunday record of $158.4 million in the pants.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • July 15, 2011 8:27 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Bridesmaids' Box Office Achievements: Analysis

We all know that Bridesmaids showed sexy legs at the summer box office, busting down doors for femme movies as well as breakouts Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy. Anthony D'Alessandro digs into what the numbers really mean. The Universal sleeper has made back six times its $26.2 million opening (or $159 million) at a production cost of $33 million. It’s the highest-grossing Judd Apatow film of all time, beating his domestic directorial high Knocked Up ($153 million), and he didn’t even direct. All around, it's an anomaly for an R-rated film with female appeal.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • July 15, 2011 5:44 AM
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Media Watch: Murdoch Update; Brooks Resigns; Murdoch's Apology UPDATED

Media Watch: Murdoch Update; Brooks Resigns; Murdoch's Apology UPDATED
Rebekah Brooks, the chief executive of News International, has resigned. Brooks was editor of the News of the World from 2000 to 2003, during the time that the phone of murder victim Milly Dowler was hacked. In her interoffice memo, deciphered line by line by The Guardian, Brooks claims that she resigned because she was a distraction in the media, writing: “My desire to remain on the bridge has made me a focal point of the debate.” Another resignation in the phone scandal story reveals the growing pressure on Murdoch's beleaguered U.K. media group. Here's a colorful Guardian Brooks profile.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • July 15, 2011 4:59 AM
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Trailer Watch: Scorsese's Magical Hugo Conjures Beloved Family Classics

Brian Selznick, the author of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, a 2007 genre-bending children’s book, was inspired by turn of the 20th-century film pioneer Georges Méliès. Perhaps that's why Selznick’s book seems to translate so easily to the screen.
  • By Maggie Lange and Anne Thompson
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  • July 15, 2011 4:38 AM
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Weekly Wrap: Emmys Snub Genre, Nominees in Movies, Scorsese on Harrison, Potter Mania, Trailers

Weekly Wrap: Emmys Snub Genre, Nominees in Movies, Scorsese on Harrison, Potter Mania, Trailers
EMMY AWARDS & TV
  • By Sophia Savage and Anne Thompson
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  • July 15, 2011 2:30 AM
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Poland to Submit Agnieszka Holland's In Darkness for Oscars

Poland has selected Agnieszka Holland's World War II drama In Darkness (Sony Pictures Classics) as their submission for the best foreign-language Oscar. A Polish-German-Canadian co-production, In Darkness is based on the real story of a Polish man, Leopold Socha (Robert Wieckiewicz), who turned from smalltime swindler to a hero, hiding Jews in the sewers of Lwów (Ukraine). Holland has said that this film is about “the dark and bright sides of man, showing how easy it is to cross the line from one to the other.”
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • July 15, 2011 1:42 AM
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On The Road: Director Walter Salles' Secret Second Road Trip with Garrett Hedlund

Jerry Cimino, founder and curator of The Beat Museum, delves into the saga that lead to finally getting Jack Kerouac's On The Road adapted to film. His article reveals that after shooting the film from August through December of 2010, director Walter Salles and star Garrett Hedlund went on the road together with the film's '48 Hudson and a crew of five in April 2011. No one else in the cast (which includes Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, Steve Buscemi, Kristen Stewart, Amy Adams, Alice Braga and Elisabeth Moss) knew about this trip, part of Salles' "quest for authenticity." Here is an excerpt from the article and this photo, courtesy of HuffPost.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • July 14, 2011 8:23 AM
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Trailer Watch: John Carter Teaser Lands with Leaping Taylor Kitsch, Epic Imagery

Having underwhelmed us with their teaser poster, Disney does deliver a rousing first teaser trailer for Andrew Stanton's Edgar Rice Burroughs adaptation John Carter. Stanton, the writer-director of Pixar's Wall-E, moves into live-action, directing Taylor Kitsch in the title role as a lonely American soldier who is magically transported to red planet Barsoom, where he boasts gravity-boosted strength. Think Avatar, as James Cameron grew up on these novels. Carter is allied with Red Martians Ciaran Hinds, Lynn Collins, Dominic West and James Purefoy against four-armed Green Martians Willem Dafoe, Polly Walker, Thomas Haden Church and Samantha Morton in this immersive digital epic.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 14, 2011 8:15 AM
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Emmy Voters Too Snobby for Genre Fare: The Borgias, Treme, Justified, The Killing, Walking Dead

Emmy Voters Too Snobby for Genre Fare: The Borgias, Treme, Justified, The Killing, Walking Dead
The Emmy voters have weighed in. And yes, the usual worthy subjects were rewarded. Congrats to Emmy nominations leaders, largely from AMC, PBS and HBO, dramas Mad Men (19: Jon Hamm, Elizabeth Moss, John Slattery and Christina Hendricks) and Boardwalk Empire (18: Steve Buscemi and Kelly Macdonald) (nominations list is below), as well as movies and mini-series Mildred Pierce (21: Kate Winslet, Guy Pearce, Brian F. O'Byrne, Melissa Leo, Mare Winningham, Evan Rachel Wood), French bio-epic Carlos (Edgar Ramirez), sequel Upstairs Downstairs (Jean March, Eileen Atkins), Too Big to Fail (William Hurt, Paul Giamatti, James Woods), Cinema Verite (Diane Lane) and Downton Abbey (Maggie Smith).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 14, 2011 7:45 AM
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  • 5 Comments

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