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Thompson on Hollywood

AFM News: Freestyle Digital Media to Focus on Digital, Cable, VOD Distribution

In case you were wondering, VOD distribution is here to stay. Look at JC Chandor's $3.5 million Margin Call, which lured a strong ensemble of name actors led by Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons and Zachary Quinto, and has passed the $1.5 million mark theatrically in limited release, as it was also available day-and-date on VOD. More and more people are learning, as Netflix had hoped, to download and stream movies from their cable companies or through Roku, iTunes, PS3 or TiVo. Several folks I know picked up on the publicity and ad noise surrounding Margin Call and watched it on its second weekend in theaters, at home. It's significant, too, that theater owners are lowering ticket prices for a change.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 3, 2011 2:26 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Film Independent Spirit Awards' Jameson Grant: Accepting Submissions for Find Your Audience Award

Film Independent's Spirit Awards is now accepting submissions for the Jameson FIND Your Audience Award, one of four filmmaker grants. The Jameson grant, in its second year and funded by Jameson Irish Whiskey, is designed to help build an audience for a feature length narrative or documentary filmmaker. In addition to the $40,000 grant, the winner will be featured at the Independent Spirit Awards on February 25 and will receive ongoing consultation from FIND. Jeff Malmberg's excellent documentary Marwencol was last year's winner.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 3, 2011 1:19 AM
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  • 0 Comments

AFM IN THE WORKS: Edgerton, Kidman, Dujardin, Del Toro, Cotillard, Watts, Wright, Wahlberg, Ibsen

Naomi Watts, Robin Wright, James Frecheville (Animal Kingdom) and Xavier Samuel are on board to star in Anne Fontaine's (Coco Before Chanel) The Grandmothers, adapted from the 2003 novella by Nobel Prize-winner Doris Lessing by-- it's getting better--Christopher Hampton (Atonement, Dangerous Liaisons). In the story, two childhood friends/neighbors (Watts, Wright) each fall in love with the other's son, to the disgust of their wives. Sounds bizarre (and a bit like Toronto title The Oranges). Amazon sheds more light on it:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 3, 2011 1:04 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Online Constellation Launches TOP DOCS Screenings, Q & As

Constellation, the new Virtual Theatrical Exhibition and online social media platform, is launching their first lineup of documentaries, TOP DOCS. It's a curated program for doc filmmakers to discuss their recent works via live online screenings. TOP DOCS launches November 3 with director Albert Maysles hosting a Q&A of Ellen Hovde's Grey Gardens (pictured).
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 2, 2011 12:23 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Steve Jobs Biography Selling Like Hotcakes, Did Nora Ephron Know Jobs?

Walter Isaacson's Steve Jobs biography is flying off the shelves, both literal and digital, selling 380,000 copies in one week in the U.S. alone. It's the 18th best selling book of 2011, ahead of John Grisham's The Confession. The U.K. also marked strong sales of the book, 37,244 copies.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 2, 2011 11:43 AM
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War Horse Takes Preview Screening Route to Build Buzz

Disney/DreamWorks is borrowing a page from Paramount's Young Adult pop-up screening playbook by previewing Steven Spielberg's drama War Horse around the country via sneaks, starting Tuesday November 1 (see cities and dates below). (Long-lead press and key critics groups will also see the film ahead of most media, who won't screen it until the end of November.) Positive heartland reactions are already coming in.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 2, 2011 9:27 AM
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Weinsteins to Rerelease Holocaust Drama Sarah's Key In Theaters, During Award Season

Weinsteins to Rerelease Holocaust Drama Sarah's Key In Theaters, During Award Season
As if The Weinstein Co. didn't have enough going on right now--with a plethora of releases hitting theaters inside the crowded awards season corridor, including The Iron Lady, Coriolanus, W.E., The Artist and My Week with Marilyn --the company is rereleasing summer movie Sarah's Key, clearly hoping for some awards attention.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 2, 2011 6:46 AM
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  • 2 Comments

AFM News Briefs: Seyfried as Lovelace, Farrell & Rapace's Violent Spree, Lautner Gets Van Sant

- Amanda Seyfried and Peter Sarsgaard are now in talks to star as porn star Linda Lovelace and her pornographer husband, Chuck Traynor, in Lovelace, an adaptation of Eric Danville’s book The Complete Linda Lovelace, from Howl directors Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. W. Merritt Johnson (TV's In Treatment, Temple Grandin) and Andy Bellin (Trust) wrote the adaptation. After Lovelace and Traynor’s notorious Deep Throat became a porn classic, she left her husband and accused him of forcing her into pornography and prostitution.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • November 2, 2011 5:47 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Theron, Reitman, Cody Talk Young Adult: Go-for-Broke Screenwriting, Assholes Don't Change, C Word

After the sixth and final pop-up screening of Jason Reitman's Young Adult Tuesday night at Los Angeles' New Beverly, Reitman, writer Diablo Cody and stars Charlize Theron, Patton Oswalt and Elizabeth Reaser did a Q & A. TOH! guest blogger Beth Hanna reports highlights from the conversation. Paramount is releasing the film December 16.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • November 2, 2011 5:44 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Media Watch: Unthink's Anti-Facebook Grows Users, Klout Bends Freebie Rule, Comcast Falls Behind

The “Anti-Facebook” social network Unthink, which launched a week ago, has already scored 100,000 users, reports TechCrunch. The number of visitors to the website is doubling daily. The burgeoning growth of this social network--which promoted itself via Facebook bashing and a $2.5 million fund from DouglasBay--is impressive indeed, but their continued progress through the next year will tell the tale.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • November 2, 2011 5:42 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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