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Thompson on Hollywood

'World War Z' Composer Marco Beltrami Had to Pull Back "Aggressive" Score, Featuring Skulls, Emergency Sirens

The term 'family movie' might not be the first thing that comes to mind to describe "World War Z," the upcoming Brad Pitt-driven zombiepocalypse flick that pits a group of government workers against a pandemic of the undead. But that's exactly how composer Marco Beltrami--who has worked on the score for "World War Z for more than two year--thinks of the film. (Early review round-up is here.)
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 4, 2013 4:28 PM
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Angelina Jolie Writes About Her Decision to Have a Preventative Double Mastectomy and Commitment to Family

The New York Times published an op-ed piece by Angelina Jolie this morning, in which she articulately explains her reasoning for undergoing a preventative double mastectomy, a process that has taken the past three months to complete. Jolie's mother died from cancer at age 56, and, after consulting doctors, Jolie confronted the reality that genetically she had an 87% risk of breast cancer, and a 50% risk of ovarian cancer. Now, "I can tell my children they don't need to fear they will lose me to breast cancer, " Jolie writes. Highlights from the essay below.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • May 14, 2013 11:58 AM
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Columbia Pictures Nabs North American Distribution to David Ayer's World War II Drama 'Fury,' Starring Brad Pitt

Columbia Pictures has picked up domestic distribution rights, and a good portion of available international rights, to David Ayer's "Fury," starring Brad Pitt as an army sergeant leading a deadly mission into Nazi Germany near the close of World War II.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • April 11, 2013 11:52 AM
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McQueen's 'Twelve Years a Slave,' Starring Pitt, Ejiofor and Fassbender, Gets Oscar-Friendly 2013 Release Date

Fox Searchlight took a huge gamble picking up Steve McQueen's Toronto 2010 entry "Shame," starring Michael Fassbender as a tormented sex addict, which hit theaters in 2011. Fans of McQueen's work (which also includes 2008's "Hunger") have been chomping at the bit for his next film. Searchlight is giving his "Twelve Years a Slave" --starring dream team Brad Pitt, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Paul Giamatti, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano and Fassbender--a limited release on the Oscar-friendly date of December 27, 2013.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • April 2, 2013 2:06 PM
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  • 1 Comment

WATCH: Rare Audition Tapes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Nicole Kidman Air on 'Today'

Three anonymous casting directors have put 54 early Hollywood audition tapes on the auction block. On Friday, "The Today Show" aired an amusing reel of these endearingly awkward auditions. Clips include early readings from Leonardo DiCaprio vying for a role in the 1990 TV series "The Outsiders," Brad Pitt auditioning for Ron Howard's 1991 "Backdraft" and Nicole Kidman in a particularly dramatic bid for a part in 1991's "Shattered."
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • April 1, 2013 7:00 PM
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  • 1 Comment

'World War Z' UPDATE: Paramount Execs Cut Mention of China as Possible Culprit of Zombie Outbreak

As if "World War Z" hasn't already stomached enough production turmoil. News broke earlier today that Paramount executives have changed a minor plot point in the film that involves China, so that Chinese officials might look more favorably on the film for domestic distribution in the fast-rising Chinese market.
  • By Anne Thompson and Beth Hanna
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  • April 1, 2013 2:54 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Brad Pitt Talks Tentpole 'World War Z,' Unused Budapest Scenes and Fast vs. Slow Zombies in New EW

Much has been reported on "World War Z"'s laborious trek to the big screen (June 21), plagued with re-shoots and re-writes -- all the while taking the title of Most Expensive Zombie Movie Ever Made. Despite rumors of conflict between director Marc Forster ("Quantum of Solace") and his producer-star, it's up to Brad Pitt's to turn this movie into a winner for all concerned. And so he sits down with Entertainment Weekly (which hits newsstands March 29), and discusses his newfound admiration for the big-budget tentpole, the stealthy zombies in the film, and why he loosened up on his original political interests in the project.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • March 28, 2013 1:43 PM
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Cheers! Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt Releasing First Wine Next Month from Chateau Miraval

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt now own Chateau Miraval in Correns, France, and will begin releasing their first wine next month.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • February 14, 2013 1:09 PM
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The Curious Case of Brad Pitt's China Tweet

The Daily Beast reports that Chinese microblogging service Sina Weibo, China's version of Twitter (which is blocked there) with upwards of 400 million users, was sent spinning last week when Brad Pitt started an account, inaugurating it with this message: "It is the truth. Yup, I'm coming..." The Weibo message generated tens of thousands of responses, primarily positive, with more than 160K new followers added to the account. Then, on December 8, Pitt's message disappeared. What happened?
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • January 11, 2013 12:35 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Review: 'Killing Them Softly' Has Bold Style, Skips Heartbeat

Andrew Dominik's "Killing Them Softly," adapted from George V. Higgins' 1974 crime novel "Cogan's Trade," takes place in an atrophied post-Katrina New Orleans in 2008. Brad Pitt plays Jackie Cogan, a hitman whose preferred method of execution is explained in the film's updated title.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • November 30, 2012 6:44 PM
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  • 1 Comment

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