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Thompson on Hollywood

Noomi Rapace & Husband Ola Rapace to Star in Hardwicke's Lindblom/Högberg Love Story

Catherine Hardwicke (Thirteen, Twilight, Red Riding Hood) will direct Noomi Rapace (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) in a biopic of Swedish singer Anita Lindblom and her romance with boxer Bosse Högberg, to be played by Ola Rapace, the actress' husband, whose been training as a boxer for this role four years (during the project's long development stage). Their love affair often found its way to the tabloids. Of the project, Hardwicke told Screen: "”I immediately fell in love with the script [from Peter Birro] – it throws us back into Swedish celebrity culture of the 1960s, where the name is more important than the person." Hardwicke calls Lindblom "glamourous" and Högberg "charismatic." The project echos the Elizabeth Taylor/Richard Burton love-affair-biopic we're following.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 29, 2011 7:58 AM
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Oscar Watch: Weinstein Co. Adds Director Madonna's Sophomore Film W.E. to Holiday Line-Up

The Weinstein Co. has added Madonna's latest, W.E. (as in Wallis and Edward), an examination of their romance starring Abbie Cornish (Bright Star, Sucker Punch), Andrea Riseborough (Never Let Me Go), James D’Arcy (Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World) and Oscar Isaac (Drive), to its holiday line-up with a December 9 release date. That's prime Oscar real estate, and it costs money to support a movie in platform release in New York and L.A. during that crowded time frame. So the company believes in this one; we'll see it on the fall fest circuit, probably starting with Venice in August. Obviously Wallis Simpson and King Edward VIII were key figures in TWC Oscar-winner The King's Speech; the Weinsteins have good instincts for what will play with the Academy--and perhaps crucially in this case, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which has given Madonna five Golden Globe song nominations and a best actress in a musical win for Evita.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 29, 2011 7:10 AM
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LAFF Highlights: From Bernie to Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, Winners

The Los Angeles Film Festival was hopping for ten days, downtown at LA Live, a straight shot down Olympic Boulevard to an $8 parking lot. The Regal screens are new with a good rake, but the glossy presentation didn't help Richard Linklater's opening nighter Bernie, yet another based-on-a-true-story (much like Andrew Jarecki's All Good Things) that fascinated the filmmaker and his star, Jack Black, without proving to be compelling for the rest of us. The good news is that Black gives the strongest performance he has in some time as a genial good-old-boy who turns to the dark side when he winds up rich older woman Shirley MacLaine's dependent manservant/slave. The movie was for sale at the fest, and distributors who checked it out were not upbeat about its commercial prospects.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 29, 2011 5:38 AM
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Johansson Sings, Cranston for Affleck's Argo, Denzel Washington for Katrina Drama, Patel for Sorkin

- Scarlett Johansson will star in Judd Apatow's Can A Song Save Your Life?, written and to be directed by John Carney (Once). The musically themed story will pair a young songstress with "a washed up A&R man." They form a bond and sing, putting Johansson's singing talent to use. Carney confirms to The Sunday Business Post: "‘I went out to Los Angeles to meet Scarlett a couple of months ago. She was everything you could imagine – very hot, elegant and she’s really smart." Mark Ruffalo and Jim Carrey are rumored as possible co-stars. ThePlaylist has more.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 29, 2011 5:24 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Franco Nero Talks Meeting Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained

Franco Nero was in London recently for the three-day cult film festival Cine-Excess. Matt Mueller reports:While in town, Franco Nero headed over to the Italian Cultural Institute to be bestowed along with wife Vanessa Redgrave with honorary degrees from Brunel University. Decked out in graduation gowns and caps, Nero answered a few questions about his career and, in particular, the enduring popularity of Sergio Corbucci’s spaghetti western Django and his title role as the coffin-dragging gunslinger. “It never dies,” said Nero. “I just got back from shooting a movie in Brazil and everybody was, ‘Django! Django!’ the whole time.”
  • By Matt Mueller
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  • June 29, 2011 3:56 AM
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Mickey Spillane's Best Mike Hammer Hits Criterion via Kiss Me Deadly

Mickey Spillane's Best Mike Hammer Hits Criterion via Kiss Me Deadly
As the Criterion Collection releases Robert Aldrich's B-classic Kiss Me Deadly, Simon Abrams explains why Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer and hardboiled cinema were a perfect match: “As the world becomes more primitive, its treasures become more fabulous.” –Dr. G.E. Soberin, Kiss Me Deadly
  • By Simon Abrams
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  • June 28, 2011 11:19 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Telluride Film Festival Guest Director is Brazilian Singer Caetano Veloso

The guest director for the 38th Telluride Film Festival is Brazilian musician Caetano Veloso. He'll curate a special program for the four-day Labor Day weekend festival. I've seen Veloso in concert; I can't wait to see what he comes up with. Attendees at the Colorado Rocky Mountain fest won't find out the program until they arrive on opening day September 2.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 28, 2011 10:46 AM
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Last Chance to Celebrate LACMA Classic Cinema Favorites!

L.A. film buff alert: here's your chance to remind LACMA chief Michael Govan--and incoming film programmer Elvis Mitchell-- that LA movie lovers want classic movies. Outgoing LACMA film curator Ian Birnie is running a summer program of his and the LACMA audience's favorite classic film titles of the past 15 years. While the UCLA Film Archives and American Cinematheque do program classics, with Birnie gone, this could be your only chance to see some of the best movies of all time on the big screen in gorgeous prints in a friendly theater full of fellow film fans. Celebrate the best of what Hollywood has to offer. Pack the theater to the rafters so that LACMA knows that this is what audiences need and crave. Do it for fun, but make a statement too. Some of these films are actually on my ten best of all time list. Just see these movies: if you never have, order them up on Netflix. This is the creme de la creme. I've never seen Bay of Angels or Late Autumn--so I'll be there with bells on.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 28, 2011 10:30 AM
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Why Tragic Jeff Buckley Biopic Has Lured the Likes of Pitt, Maguire, Pattinson, and now Badgley

Why Tragic Jeff Buckley Biopic Has Lured the Likes of Pitt, Maguire, Pattinson, and now Badgley
For a producer, it’s not exactly a good sign when you have to publicly acknowledge that an actor isn’t playing the lead role in your biopic because he is in fact playing that same role in another biopic being made simultaneously. It’s probably even less heartening to find out just a week later that your seeming duopoly on the subject material has splintered even further, and that there is suddenly a third contender in the ring.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 28, 2011 6:58 AM
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Palm Springs International ShortFest: The Road to Hollywood, Oscar

After taking part in an engaging trade media panel for some of the 400 or so shorts filmmakers who flocked to the 2011 Palm Springs International ShortFest, I not only walked away with a stack of screeners, but when I returned to the Ace Hotel in the baking heat for a cool dip, realized with horror that many of the same filmmakers were lounging in the pool.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 28, 2011 6:32 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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