Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

Blogroll

Thompson on Hollywood

Production Watch: Olsen's Red Lights, Cheadle in War Machine, Petunia Shoots in NYC

- Get her while she's hot. Sundance It-Girl (Martha Marcy May Marlene, Silent House) Elizabeth Olsen just joined Robert De Niro, Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy in Red Lights, from director Rodrigo Cortes (Buried). The non-twin Olsen sister tells Risky Business she found the thriller after reading "script after script after script." She will play Weaver's student: “Robert plays a world renowned psychic and Sigourney is a psychology professor…Cillian Murphy is my love interest, though that’s not a huge part of the story.” Olsen will take a break from NYU -- "my education is always a priority" -- to shoot Red Lights. The Psych major "find[s] mental illnesses fascinating."
  • By Sophia Savage
  • |
  • January 24, 2011 6:11 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments

Sundance Watch: Weinstein Co. Aggressively Acquires My Idiot Brother in Seller's Market

Buying at Sundance is a game of grabbing one title at a time: each distrib circles the hit titles, grabs one, and retires from the fray. (Sony Pictures Classics, Magnolia IFC tend to have bigger appetites.) What buyers don't want in a heated bidding situation is to overpay for a weak title or wind up needing product and going home with nothing. Weinstein Co. did not land Margin Call (which went to Lionsgate/Roadside) or Like Crazy (which went to Paramount) or Take Shelter, starring Michael Shannon, or Morgan Spurlock's The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, which both went to Sony pre-fest. Sony saw the Spurlock doc before anyone had seen the completed picture--Sony saw the first hour of the film, says Spurlock. James Marsh's dramatic chimp doc Project Nim went to HBO before the fest, which is seeking a theatrical partner.
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 24, 2011 12:58 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments

Sundance Panel: Martha Marcy May Marlene

One of the best-reviewed films at Sundance is Sean Durkin's Martha Marcy May Marlene, starring one of several Sundance "it girls," Elizabeth Olsen as a young woman who is drawn into an isolated cult led by John Hawkes. Check out the press conference moderated by exec producer Ted Hope.
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 10:05 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments

IMDb Founder Col Needham Talks Sundance

IMDb founder Col Needham is a big film buff, and he takes his Sundance picks seriously. I caught him with the Flip Cam at the Eccles Saturday night:
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 9:55 AM
  • |
  • 2 Comments

Sundance Watch: Drake Doremus Talks Like Crazy Sale, Felicity Jones Breaks Out

The Sundance Fest's biggest sale so far is Like Crazy, the follow-up film from Drake Doremus, who showed Douchebag here last year. That movie was a minor improv road comedy of the Mumblecore variety. (Speaking of which, SXSW grad Joe Swanberg's first Sundance entry, Uncle Kent, has earned dismissive reviews here.)
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 8:31 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments

Weekend Box Office: No Strings Attached Wins Top Spot; Proves Portman's Star Power

Proving that Natalie Portman is a movie star with marquee value, romantic comedy No Strings Attached opened to an estimated $20.3 million at the weekend box office, reports Anthony D'Alessandro:This weekend, Natalie Portman was America’s Sweetheart as Paramount’s R-rated No Strings Attached plucked $20.3 million while her best actress- buzzed Black Swan rose past the $80-million mark. When Paramount launched its viral trailer campaign for the film in November, cine-bloggers feared that Strings might tarnish Portman’s award season odds.
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 6:40 AM
  • |
  • 3 Comments

Sundance Watch: Margin Call Goes to Lionsgate/Roadside, Shuns VOD, Like Crazy Goes to Paramount

Sundance Watch: Margin Call Goes to Lionsgate/Roadside, Shuns VOD, Like Crazy Goes to Paramount
In the first major deal of the festival, one of the more commercial-looking prospects of the Sundance market, rookie director J.C. Chandor's Wall Street drama Margin Call, went to Lionsgate and its subsidiary Roadside after an all-night negotiation at Roadside's Deer Valley condo. The movie is a testament to what can be done on a shoestring--the $3.5 million film was shot in 17 days in New York City.
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 4:54 AM
  • |
  • 1 Comment

Oscar Watch: Directors Round Table

The LATimes' directors' roundtable dwells on what Oscar contenders (left to right in the LAT photo) Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids Are All Right), Ben Affleck (The Town), Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), David Fincher (The Social Network), Tom Hooper (The King's Speech), and Ethan Coen (True Grit) learn from failure, basically:
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 3:53 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

Sundance Watch: Hope and Vachon Do Hulu

Two of the cannier producers with taste who have been supplying films at Sundance for decades are Ted Hope (The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) and Killer Films' Christine Vachon (Mildred Pierce). This year Hope not only executive produced director Sean Durkin's impossibly-titled cult film Martha Marcy May Marlene, which played well here (amid buyer interest) and broke out the festival's "it-girl" Elizabeth Olsen--sister of Mary-Kate and Ashley, who also stars in a solo one-shot tour-de-force Silent House--but is conducting with Vachon a series of interview shows produced by Digital Artists that are being streamed on Hulu.com. Check out their interview with Olsen:
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 23, 2011 12:15 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments

Sundance Watch: Margin Call Ignites Buyer Interest

Sundance Watch: Margin Call Ignites Buyer Interest
So they're off! On a bright sunny Friday morning, the usual gang of buyers assembled at Park City' Utah's Holiday Cinema III for one of the more promising commercial titles, Margin Call, featuring an attractive ensemble of wily character actors led by Kevin Spacey, Paul Bettany and Zachary Quinto--with ace support from Demi Moore, Simon Baker and Jeremy Irons. Buyers Harvey Weinstein, Focus's James Schamus, Sony Pictures Classics' Tom Bernard, Fox Searchlight's Tony Safford, IFC's Jonathan Seyring, and others packed the press and industry screening. UPDATE: Three companies are bidding on the film so far.
  • By Anne Thompson
  • |
  • January 22, 2011 2:29 AM
  • |
  • 3 Comments

Email Updates