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Thompson on Hollywood

When Bad Perfume Ads Happen to Good Actors: Melanie Laurent the Latest (Well Paid) Victim

Melanie Laurent is the latest (well-paid) victim of perfume advertising. It's amazing how powerful (translation: $$$) the mere suggestion of celebrity sexuality or nudity can be. But we don't care how sparkly they these commercials may be; they are all wasted opportunities, and A-list directors often share the blame. The only one with an ounce of creativity is Jean-Jacques Annaud's Dior ad, in which Charlize Theron's unbridled confidence holds our interest (along with cameos by late Hollywood icons). Granted, it's hard to represent a scent with visuals, but surely they can try harder to stand out? See how many of these you can stomach:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 3, 2011 11:05 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Agnieszka Holland's In Darkness Gets Oscar Qualifying Run in December

Sony Pictures Classics is giving Agnieszka Holland's Polish holocaust drama In Darkness, which played well at both Telluride and Toronto, an Oscar-qualifying run in New York and Los Angeles from December 9-15. The Polish Oscar submission should be a strong contender for the foreign film Oscar. Holland has been nominated twice, for Europa, Europa and Angry Harvest. She also co-wrote mentor Krzysztof Kieslowski’s Three Colors: Blue and directed 1993's The Secret Garden as well as some of the best shows on cable: HBO's The Wire and Treme (for which she received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Directing) and two episodes of The Killing.
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • October 3, 2011 9:49 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Werner Herzog Talks 'Into the Abyss,' Looks "deep into the heart of ourselves" (video)

Herzog Talks Into the Abyss, Opens DOC NYC, Looks "deep into the heart of ourselves"
One reason that Werner Herzog's docs are so compelling and entertaining is that his powerful personality is all over them, commenting, narrating, querying. Herzog's docs, as lauded as they are, are often overlooked by the Oscar documentary branch, which nominated while Encounters at the End of the World but did not recognize Grizzly Man, Into the Abyss and Cave of Forgotten Dreams (which was not screened in 3-D). (Michael Moore cites these oversights in his successful quest for changing the Academy rules.) "It's not easy to figure out how the system works," says Herzog. "It doesn't give me sleepless nights. This one is more what they think the documentary is supposed to be. It's so straightforward. No radioactive albino crocodiles. No commentary."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 3, 2011 8:18 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Cronenberg's Menage A Trois, Kendrick's Wet Dream, Woody Allen Talks Unsatisfying Situation of Life

- David Cronenberg talks about his inspiration for A Dangerous Method and his upcoming Cosmopolis (in post-production) and potential future projects with ThePlaylist. He admits that he has always wanted to make a film about the birth of psychoanalysis, but didn't see a way in until Christopher Hampton's play: "Suddenly there is a structure. And this was my first introduction to Sabina and she is part of what I call an ‘intellectual menage a trois,’ and that structure was terrific—the span of it, the relationship between Freud and Jung that went over six or seven years.”
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 3, 2011 8:15 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Yahoo News & ABC Team Up for Content Sharing, People.com Relaunches Caught in the Act

-Yahoo News and ABC News have formed a partnership to share stories and feature web video. ABC's "Good Morning America" announced this alliance, which they called a "game changer," early this morning. Yahoo News boasts the most unique visitors of all news Web sites; The NYT reports that each will have editorial independence but will share content and co-produce coverage of some news events.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 3, 2011 8:13 AM
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Kaufman's Meta Frank or Francis, Craig and Mara Pose in Empire

- Check out Empire's spread of Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig, as they continue to build hype for David Fincher's The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo. More details on the issue and why Lisbeth Salander is "not a superhero" here.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 3, 2011 8:06 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Blumberg Sex Addiction Dramedy Thank You for Sharing: Cast includes Paltrow, Pink, Ruffalo, Robbins

Writer-director Stuart Blumberg's (co-writer of The Kids are All Right; pictured top left) will bring his Thanks for Sharing to life with Mark Ruffalo, Tim Robbins, Gwyneth Paltrow, Patrick Fugit, Joely Richardson, Josh Gad and the newest cast member, Alecia Moore (a.k.a. Pink). The film is currently shooting in New York City, and follows a group of "unlikely friends brought together through their shared determination to recover from sex addiction and forge meaningful relationships for the first time in their lives."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 3, 2011 7:25 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Media Watch: Relativity Launches First Movie Sector Marketing Partnership with Spotify

Relativity Media continues to cut a swath in the online sector by forging a long-term marketing partnership with burgeoning three-year-old European digital music service Spotify. Relativity is Spotify's exclusive launch partner in the Film category and the first stateside movie company to run media on the platform. Kicking off the new partnership is marketing for the adventure flick Immortals (November 11, 2011) which will be targeted to Spotify’s US-based customers. No specifics yet for the exact content to be supplied for this media partnership.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 3, 2011 6:15 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Amanda Knox at the Movies

Well, Lifetime movie Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy, starring Hayden Panettierre and Marcia Gay Harden, came and went this spring without much fuss, although it was reportedly less than accurate. After protests from Knox's parents, Lifetime removed a controversial recreation of the murder. (The channel wasted no time rebroadcasting the TV film with updated title cards). But with the unfolding drama of the controversial American exchange student convicted of a 2007 murder in Italy still in the news, there seems room for a proper movie version.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 3, 2011 5:47 AM
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  • 2 Comments
More: Video

Indie Release Mojo: Margaret, Dream House, Machine Gun Preacher, Drive

Indie Release Mojo: Margaret, Dream House, Machine Gun Preacher, Drive
The box office wreckage this weekend reminds that it's usually NOT a good idea to take a movie away from a director, and how hazardous it is for indie films in this over-crowded marketplace.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 3, 2011 5:33 AM
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  • 3 Comments

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