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Thompson on Hollywood

SFIFF 54 Day Five: Time Travel, from Cave of Forgotten Dreams to Children of the Princess of Cleves

Meredith Brody reports on the latest festival screenings from San Francisco:The Frenchwoman who introduced Children of the Princess of Cleves gave us an invaluable bit of information that cast the film in an interesting light. President Nicolas Sarkozy said that reading the required “Princess of Cleves,” published in 1678, made no sense for a high school student who would be working as a cashier in two years. Many in France were incensed by the comment, big surprise -- as am I – wasn’t Sarkozy, despite a wealthy background, posited as “l’homme du people” when he ran for President? Here’s real-time news: when I Google Sarkozy, the news pops up that he and Carla Bruni are expecting their first child together – posted 13 minutes ago! I also learn that Sarkozy was a mediocre student, and had to go to a crammer to pass his baccalaureate, the exam that determines whether or not you can go on to college.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • April 27, 2011 3:02 AM
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Two or Three Things I Know About Harvey Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein amuses me. When I first met him in 1987 in Cannes, he was a hungry indie distributor on the rise hawking Lizzie Borden's Working Girls. I've tracked him and interviewed him and annoyed him over the years--and the video interview below reveals some of the things I know about him.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 26, 2011 10:34 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Hot Cable Series The Killing, The Borgias, Game of Thrones Boost Breakout Stars

Hot Cable Series The Killing, The Borgias, Game of Thrones Boost Breakout Stars
Post-Oscar season, there's no question that these days, the best viewing to be found is on cable. Not only are AMC's critically-hailed Danish murder mystery remake The Killing, HBO's Tolkien light fantasy series Game of Thrones (adapted from George R.R. Martin's novels by top Hollywood scribe David Benioff and D.B. Weiss), and Showtime's The Borgias (adapted by writer-director Neil Jordan) compelling, gorgeously-mounted, well-written series, but they are breaking out --and reviving--talent as well.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 26, 2011 8:06 AM
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BAFTA TV Award Nominations Include Danish The Killing, Mad Men, Glee, Boardwalk Empire

In TV news, BAFTA has nominated the original Danish The Killing as well as usual suspects Mad Men, Glee and Boardwalk Empire for BAFTA's best international show. Full list is below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 26, 2011 7:50 AM
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Interview Watch: Michelle Williams Talks Career, Harrison Ford on CGI, Gabriel Byrne on Catholicism

- In their May issue, Interview Magazine asks Meek's Cutoff star Michelle Williams about her selective and seemingly wise career choices. Williams responds:"How do I say this? It’s like a mechanism in my life that runs on its own. When other things in my life don’t, and are broken and aren’t going well, for some reason my decision-making mechanism has a little engine of its own, and it’s fine. So I don’t overthink it. I’ve come to learn that the choices I labor over and go back and forth about and ask a million people for their opinions and make lists about...those are always the wrong choices. I’ve definitely made a couple of those, and that’s how I know now that it’s not the best way for me to decide…I don’t think of it as building, or really even a career. It’s just what appeals to me right now, without any real thought about how it’s going to affect my future, or even how it relates to my past work. I have faith in the fact that, as I change, so will the things that I’m interested in, as long as I keep up my own change."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • April 26, 2011 7:09 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Cannes Classics 2011: A Clockwork Orange, Despair, A Bronx Tale, The Conformist

Cannes' 2011 Classics program includes fourteen films (including A Clockwork Orange, pictured), five documentaries, a Masterclass with Malcolm McDowell, surprises, and new/restored prints. Details are below:Cannes Classics was established in 2004. The selection - because it is also one - allows the Cannes Film Festival to showcase heritage cinema, re-discovered films, restored prints and theatrical, television or DVD releases of the great works of the past. This program is presented in the Palais (Buñuel or 60th Theatres) and some films will be screened at the Cinema de la Plage and La Licorne cinema in Cannes.

Fourteen films, five documentaries, surprises, a Masterclass (Malcolm McDowell), new or restored prints: The program is based on proposals from national archives, cinematheques, studios, producers and distributors. Rare classics to discover or re-discover, they will be presented in 35mm or high definition digital prints.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 26, 2011 5:18 AM
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Oscar Watch: 84th Academy Awards Are February 26, 2012; BAFTAs February 12 (UPDATED)

Oscar Watch: 84th Academy Awards Are February 26, 2012; BAFTAs February 12 (UPDATED)
The Academy reveals key dates for the 84th Academy Awards, to be presented February 26, 2012 at the Kodak Theatre and televised live on ABC.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • April 26, 2011 4:44 AM
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AFI Lifetime Award to Morgan Freeman: Pitt, Hanks, Mirren, Nicholson, Eastwood To Pay Tribute

The American Film Institute is honoring Morgan Freeman with their 39th Lifetime Achievement Award. The Gala Benefit on June 9 (airing on TV Land June 26) will host the following committee members to play tribute to Freeman: Ben Affleck, Jim Carrey, Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, Ashley Judd, Helen Mirren, Mike Nichols, Jack Nicholson, Brad Pitt, Sidney Poitier, Robert Redford, Tim Robbins, Steven Spielberg, Hilary Swank, Denzel Washington and Alfre Woodard.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • April 26, 2011 3:44 AM
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  • 3 Comments

SFIFF 54 Day Four: Silent Souls, Crime After Crime, Christine Vachon vs. Miranda July

Meredith Brody dives into her fourth day of San Francisco screenings, starting with one of my favorite films from Venice, Silent Souls (pictured):Easter Sunday was never a big holiday in my book – mostly I look forward to the half-price chocolates available the day after. The darkened cinema is my favorite place of worship anyway.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • April 26, 2011 1:54 AM
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How Rookie Director Tadjedin Made Miramax/Tribeca's Last Night, Starring Knightley

How Rookie Director Tadjedin Made Miramax/Tribeca's Last Night, Starring Knightley
Last Night is a high-profile test of new indie distributor-on-the-block Tribeca Films' video-on-demand model. Screening April 25 at the Tribeca Film Festival following its Toronto Fest debut, the movie was released on VOD on April 20, opening night of the Fest, and will open theatrically in limited situations on May 6. (Caryn James likes it. Trailer is below.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 25, 2011 8:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments

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