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Thompson on Hollywood

Cannes Market: Buyers vs. Sellers; Schamus Talks Focus Buys; Wachowskis Hit Croisette

Cannes Market: Buyers vs. Sellers; Schamus Talks Focus Buys; Wachowskis Hit Croisette
It's a new Cannes. On the eve of the fest opening Wednesday, Focus Features, which has been on a buying spree of late, acquired domestic distribution rights to rookie director Lorene Scafaria's "pre-apocalyptic" comedic romance Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, starring Steve Carell and Keira Knightley. Indian Paintbrush and Mandate Pictures are partnering on financing the Anonymous Content film, which Lionsgate is selling overseas. It starts production in Los Angeles this May. Scafaria (Mandate's Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist) wrote the original screenplay about two people who fall in love at the worst possible time. "I want to shake it up a bit," says Schamus, who is known for being risk-averse. "That doesn't mean go crazy. It means behaving less predictably on the business side. We're able to work with filmmakers and let them do crazy stuff."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 10, 2011 2:16 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Sony Wins International Rights to Tarantino's Django Unchained; Is Will Smith Locked In?

Sony has landed international rights to Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained, for which the writer-director is eyeing Will Smith. The Weinsteins have domestic rights. Smith is affiliated with Sony, which explains why Sony landed the prize despite Universal's success with Inglourious Basterds. With Smith, Django would have huge mainstream appeal.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 9, 2011 9:12 AM
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Rob Marshall to Direct Warners Thin Man Remake with Johnny Depp as Nick; Who's Nora?

It's official: Rob Marshall and John DeLuca will produce a remake of The Thin Man through their LUCAMAR Productions, with Marshall directing. Johnny Depp will star and Jerry Stahl (Bad Boys II) is scripting the "classy and classic project," as Marshall calls it. He is "overjoyed" to work with Depp again, natch (he directed him in this summer's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides), and says:"We are looking forward to working with Warner Bros. to create a reinvention of a beloved story."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 9, 2011 8:34 AM
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  • 8 Comments

UCLA's Festival of New Creative Work to Honor Snider, Bender, Cholodenko

The 2011 UCLA TFT's (School of Theater, Film and Television) Festival of New Creative Work will honor DreamWorks CEO Stacey Snider (Champion Spirit Award), producer Lawrence Bender (Vision Award) and director Lisa Cholodenko (Filmmaker of the Year Award). Recipients are chosen by students who vote within their field of study. The festival runs June 3-9, more information is here. 
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 9, 2011 7:25 AM
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Derek Cianfrance Talks Details for Place Behind the Pines, Reuniting with Ryan Gosling

Writer-director Derek Cianfrance's The Place Behind the Pines has Ryan Gosling attached and an offer out to Bradley Cooper. The two stars combined with the father-son-epic-crime-movie genre and the indie-sensibility of the Blue Valentine director could prove a powerful mix.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 9, 2011 6:15 AM
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Jessica Chastain on Malick and Seeing The Tree of Life: "You Can't Help But Be Changed"

We recently featured Jessica Chastain as one of our Four Rising Stars of 2011, and the world will soon discover why. The premiere of Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life (May 16 at Cannes) will kick off a series of high profile projects, from Al Pacino's Wilde Salome (premiering at the Venice Film Festival this September) to this summer's The Help (August 12). The Independent spoke with the actress about working with Malick (she's a big fan) and the effect of his long-awaited film: "I think you see [The Tree of Life] and you can't help but be changed, and you can't help but think about your life and your relationship with your family, and nature, and some kind of spiritual being – it's really special."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 9, 2011 6:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Die-Hard Indie John Sayles Takes McSweeney's Novel A Moment in the Sun On Tour

John Sayles and producer Maggie Renzi tell Cari Beauchamp about their book tour for Sayles' A Moment in the Sun: Since Return of the Secaucus Seven in 1979, John Sayles, along side his long-time producer and partner Maggie Renzi, have been making independent films, telling the stories they want to tell (Lone Star, Matewan, Eight Men Out and more than a dozen others). In between, Sayles has supplemented his income with often uncredited studio writing jobs as well writing short stories and novels. It is exemplary of Sayles, who writes, directs and edits his own films, that he never uses the possessory credit and when speaking of his movies, always uses the word "we"...
  • By Cari Beauchamp
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  • May 9, 2011 5:05 AM
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Cannes 2011: The Latest Trailers & Pictures: Drive, Skin I Live In, L'Apollonide, Hara-Kiri & More

Here is the complete Cannes Film Festival lineup, and the trailers available so far:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 9, 2011 4:29 AM
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Cannes Teaser: Almodovar's The Skin I Live In, Starring Banderas

Check out the teaser trailer for Cannes-debuting Pedro Almodovar pic The Skin I Live In, which at long last reunites the director with Spanish star Antonio Banderas.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 8, 2011 12:12 PM
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Woody Allen Acts Again in Rome Movie

Woody Allen Acts Again in Rome Movie
As Woody Allen does the advance press rounds for his new movie Midnight in Paris, a valentine to the City of Lights which will play like gangbusters when it opens the Cannes Film Festival May 11, he is also revealing some tantalizing tidbits about his new movie, which he will shoot in Rome this summer. My full interview with Allen will run the moment the first press screening in Cannes lets out Wednesday. Trailer is below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 8, 2011 5:20 AM
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  • 2 Comments

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