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Thompson on Hollywood

Immersed in Movies: DreamWorks Has a 'Crood' Awakening

You couldn't find a more apt movie to sum up DreamWorks Animation at the moment than "The Croods" (March 22), the prehistoric road trip adventure about embracing change as a survival strategy when the world turns terribly hostile. After last year's box office misfire with "Rise of the Guardians," which resulted in a $165 million write-off, layoffs, and schedule reshuffle, DreamWorks is definitely in transition.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • March 15, 2013 3:04 PM
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Weekend Preview: Promising and Diverse Film Fare All Around, 'From Up on Poppy Hill' to 'Ginger & Rosa' and 'Spring Breakers'

This weekend sees a number of well-reviewed films in limited release. Sally Potter's lovely coming-of-age drama "Ginger & Rosa" stars a remarkable Elle Fanning nimbly handling the role of a budding teen poet struggling to come to terms with her family's latest break-up and the Cuban Missile Crisis. The new Studio Ghibli entry and Hayao Miyazaki's son Goro's second feature film, "From Up on Poppy Hill," is receiving glowing praise from the critics, while Matteo Garrone's "Reality," his follow-up to "Gomorrah" that follows the rise of a regular guy to reality TV-star status, is also getting top marks.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • March 15, 2013 2:59 PM
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What's Next for Ang Lee, From FX's 'Tyrant' to Eyeing Moses and 'Cleopatra'

Fresh off his Oscar win as Best Director for "Life of Pi," Ang Lee is fielding a number of potential and solidified upcoming projects. News comes today that the Taiwanese-born director is being eyed to helm Warner Bros.' Moses biopic "Gods and Kings," now that Steven Spielberg has dropped out.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • March 15, 2013 2:49 PM
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Boston Phoenix Closes: Spawned Top Film Critics, Along with Defunct The Real Paper

On March 14, the Boston Phoenix closed. Last fall, the print weekly switched from traditional newspaper to glossy, having merged with a sister Boston magazine (see a comparison here). While the Phoenix saw a temporary rise in national ads following the redesign, this wasn't sustained; the lack of ad revenue has been cited as the major reason for the publication's shuttering. Its closing is a sad sign for the world of film criticism. The Phoenix spawned a number of top critics over the years...
  • By Anne Thompson and Beth Hanna
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  • March 15, 2013 2:23 PM
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Brody Diary Day One: Sun Valley Film Festival Brings Will McCormack, Barbara Kopple and Mariel Hemingway, 'Wind Walkers'

Why am I at the Sun Valley Film Festival for its second annual outing? Because I ran into film blogger Michael Guillen, of The Evening Class, at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival Winter Event on February 16 – a delirious day-long extravaganza of silent films with eclectic live music accompaniment, a teaser for the annual four-day festival in July – my favorite among many film festivals in San Francisco.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • March 15, 2013 1:02 PM
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Agnes Varda, Still Making Waves

Agnes Varda, irrepressible octogenarian -- “say I’ll be 85 in May” -- and filmmaker whose 1954 feature debut, "La Pointe-Courte," precipitated New Wave cinema, is artist-in-residence at the University of Pennsylvania this week, dispensing wisdom, teaching master classes and sharing some of her 33 films, including her 2009 cine-memoir, "The Beaches of Agnes."
  • By Carrie Rickey
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  • March 15, 2013 12:20 PM
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Trailers from Hell: Allan Arkush on 'The Actress,' Starring Spencer Tracy

Spencer Tracy Week! concludes at Trailers from Hell with director Allan Arkush introducing George Cukor's "The Actress," starring Tracy and Jean Simmons.
  • By Trailers From Hell
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  • March 15, 2013 11:16 AM
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Nanni Moretti Comedy 'We Have a Pope' Comes Back

With all the papal craziness right now, it's no surprise that Sundance Selects is bringing Nanni Moretti's 2011 competition Cannes entry "We Have a Pope" ("Habemus Papam") back to a theater near you. "Recent world events made it irresistible for us to bring back 'We Have a Pope,'" said President of Sundance Selects/IFC Films Jonathan Sehring, "which mirrors what much of the discussion on the world stage has been over the last few weeks."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 14, 2013 9:22 PM
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Spielberg Taps Indie Colin Trevorrow to Direct 'Jurassic Park 4'

"Thrilled to have director on JP4, Colin Trevorrow, an exciting young filmmaker who understands and respects the world that is Jurassic Park," tweets @LeDoctor, aka producer Frank Marshall. Colin who? Well, in the honorable tradition of tapping a gifted indie filmmaker to take on a studio project, Marshall and exec producer Steven Spielberg have turned to indie writer-director Colin Trevorrow to direct "Jurassic Park 4."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 14, 2013 8:52 PM
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Hanks Joins Women in the World Summit to Tribute Ephron

The two-day annual Women in the World summit, to be held in New York on April 4 and 5, will feature such female icons as Meryl Streep, Oprah Winfrey, Ambassador Susan E. Rice and Diane von Furstenberg, among others. Tom Hanks, currently starring on Broadway in Nora Ephron's final play "Lucky Guy," will offer a celebratory tribute to the famed screenwriter (and fairweather director) of films such as “Sleepless in Seattle” and “You’ve Got Mail,” and a woman-in-the-world if there ever was one, who died in June 2012 after a difficult trudge through leukemia.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • March 14, 2013 8:34 PM
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