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Thompson on Hollywood

Sundance Dealwatch: Fox Searchlight Picks Up World Rights to Another Earth

When Fox Searchlight returned to Los Angeles from Sundance and screened micro-budget sci-fi romance Another Earth for the rest of the gang on the studio lot, the movie played so well that execs were encouraged to acquire the rest of the available territories on the film. So the movie did go for more than Searchlight's initial $750,000 for English-speaking territories. The official total figure is $2.75 million for world rights.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 28, 2011 5:26 AM
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Trailer Watch: IFC's Peep World

Check out the trailer for Peep World, from director (and Coming to America, The Nutty Professor and SNL writer) Barry Blaustein. The film got picked up by IFC in Toronto last September. À la Little Miss Sunshine or Running with Scissors, the story follows a day in the lives of a dysfunctional family forced to come to terms with their intimate secrets, newly exposed with the publication of the youngest siblings's novel. Michael C. Hall, Sarah Silverman, Rainn Wilson, Ben Swartz, Judy Greer, Kate Mara, Taraji P. Henson and Ron Rifkin star...
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 28, 2011 2:00 AM
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Sundance Institute Pacts with Kickstarter to Support Filmmakers

The Sundance Institute, under new executive director Keri Putnam, is extending its mission to support filmmakers in a way that ex-chief Ken Brecker was resisting (and ex-Fest director Geoff Gilmore, now at Tribeca Enterprises, was pushing).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 28, 2011 1:32 AM
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Sundance Alert: Life in a Day Premieres at Sundance and on YouTube

Sundance Alert: Life in a Day Premieres at Sundance and on YouTube
Check out Life in a Day--live on YouTube as of 8 PM EST Thursday. Yes, big Hollywood filmmaker Ridley Scott is involved, but remember, the guy makes films and commercials and knows how to edit little pieces of film together. "This isn't like any other film you've seen before," as documentary/narrative filmmaker Kevin Macdonald said before the film unspooled Thursday night at Sundance. "Thank God it's better than Koyaanisqatsi," said one critic. Yes, it's much better.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 28, 2011 1:18 AM
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Sundance Video: James Marsh Talks HBO's Project Nim, Roadside Lands U.S. Theatrical Rights

Sundance Video: James Marsh Talks HBO's Project Nim, Roadside Lands U.S. Theatrical Rights
James Marsh is a happy man. Not only did his stylish, unsettling and provocative doc Project Nim, about a chimp raised by a series of human parents during the 70s, land a berth at Tiffany cabler HBO, which bought all rights before the festival, but it went on to play well at Sundance (the awards show is Saturday) and will be released theatrically by Roadside. Here are reviews from THR, Variety and indieWIRE.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 28, 2011 12:38 AM
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Production Watch, Part 2: De Palma's Passion, Untouchables; Jay-Z & Willow Smith's Annie Confirmed

- Brian De Palma is stepping out to direct a remake of France's 2010 psychodrama Crime d'amour (Love Crime), with the title Passion. "Not since Dressed to Kill have I had a chance to combine eroticism, suspense, mystery and murder into one spellbinding cinematic experience," De Palma told Variety. Set in the UK, the France-Germany-UK-Spain co-production is in the works at Paris-based SBS Productions (they also have Polanski's Gods of Carnage in the works with Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz and John C. Reilly). Productions like this are moving away from U.S. financing due to the limitations of the U.S. market, according to SBS's Ben Said: "Movies of this kind are very difficult to make today in the U.S. because the U.S. doesn't have co-productions and the studios are not interested in making them." The original Love Crime starred Kristin Scott Thomas and Ludivine Sagnier as feuding exes - one of whom ends up murdered by the other. De Palma's cast is expected to be announced by the start of Cannes this May.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 27, 2011 11:39 AM
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George Clooney's Satellite Sentinel Project: Report on Sudanese Border Conflict

"We're the anti-genocide paparazzi," George Clooney told Time magazine of his Satellite Sentinel Project.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 27, 2011 9:53 AM
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Production Watch, Part I: Rapace & Fassbender for Prometheus, Stewart & Mortensen for Snow White

- The Alien prequel now known as Ridley Scott's Prometheus is getting an early summer 2012 release: June 8. Scott is working with Damon Lindelof (Cowboys & Aliens, Lost) on revising the original script by Jon Spaihts from Scott's original concept. Much of the plot in unknown, but Scott has confirmed "Alien DNA" will be in the genome of Prometheus. Noomi Rapace will star with Michael Fassbender (sorry, Snow White and the Huntsman, you lost him).
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 27, 2011 9:30 AM
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Exec Watch: Relativity Adds Steve Bertram as COO, CFO

As he continues to beef up his burgeoning company, Relativity Media CEO Ryan Kavanaugh has hired Steve Bertram, who was president of Business Operations for Paramount Home Entertainment for five years, as Relativity's new COO and CFO, supervising day-to-day company operations. He will oversee Relativity's domestic and international distribution operation and will report on those areas to Relativity president Michael Joe. In the financial arena he will report to Kavanaugh.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 27, 2011 9:01 AM
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Sundance Watch: Winners Ceremony and IndieWIRE Live Coverage January 29

Sundance Watch: Winners Ceremony and IndieWIRE Live Coverage January 29
The Sundance Film Festival official awards ceremony will take place this Saturday, starting at 6 pm EMT (5 pm PST), followed by an after-party. You can follow indieWIRE for live updates and coverage and watch the video stream here. Jury, Audience, NEXT and special awards will be announced. Tim Blake Nelson, star of Flypaper, which premiered at the festival, will host the ceremony.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 27, 2011 8:56 AM
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