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Thompson on Hollywood

Consolata Boyle Talks 'Philomena' Costume Design

For Dublin native Consolata Boyle, designing the costumes for the fact-based "Philomena" -- her seventh collaboration with director Stephen Frears -- took on special significance. Certainly it's a powerful story about a mother's search for her long-lost son, amid the appalling revelation of forced adoptions in Ireland. But its greatest artistic appeal came from the witty "Odd Couple" pairing of Judi Dench and Steve Coogan.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • December 31, 2013 6:32 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Alexandre Desplat Talks Embracing Humor Through Music in 'Philomena' Score

Composer Alexandre Desplat has never scored a comedy before and, although one wouldn't call "Philomena" a comedy, he nonetheless found the witty repartee between Judi Dench and Steve Coogan a lighter change of pace in crafting the music for his fifth collaboration with director Stephen Frears.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • December 18, 2013 2:10 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Open Up the Best Actress Oscar Race: Five Locks and Eight Must-See Performances

As usual, there are more viable men hustling after a Best Actor slot than women in contention for Best Actress. (My current predictions are here.) 'Twas ever thus, as the myopic film industry continues to chase the male demo and sequester "soft" relationship movies to the indie realm. Which means that many worthy films don't make it to the top of Academy voters' screener piles. How many film panels and Q & As have you seen with a row of men in suits and one woman in a frilly frock and impossibly high heels? Women in film are often a supporting afterthought.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 5, 2013 3:40 PM
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  • 9 Comments

Review and Round-Up: Stephen Frears' Oscar-Friendly 'Philomena' Stars Judi Dench and Steve Coogan (TRAILER)

It's no surprise that the Weinstein Co. is releasing "Philomena," which is one of those movies aimed squarely at the Academy middle. It took a while for writer-producer-star Steve Coogan--who seems to be trying to perform some kind of career rehab by playing a softer-hearted creature than his usual--to persuade Stephen Frears to do the directing honors.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 18, 2013 4:16 PM
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  • 1 Comment

WATCH: Judi Dench Speaks Eloquently About Meeting and Playing the Real-Life 'Philomena'

Last month at the Venice Film Festival, Judi Dench spoke eloquently at the "Philomena" press conference about meeting the real Philomena Lee, now 80, and the challenges of bringing her unusual life to the screen. Watch below.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • October 21, 2013 12:04 PM
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WATCH: First Clip from Stephen Frears' Oscar Hopeful 'Philomena,' with Judi Dench and Steve Coogan

The first clip from Brit director Stephen Frears' dramedy "Philomena," which debuted at Venice to raves and will play TIFF this month, has arrived. The Weinstein Company has slated the film, starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, for a December 25 stateside release.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • September 3, 2013 12:57 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Venice Film Festival 2013 Review: 'Philomena' Is A Triumph

If you were seeking a guaranteed recipe for box-office success, casting Judi Dench as a sweet little old Irish lady trying to track down the son she was forced into giving up for adoption decades earlier sounds like the winning ingredient. Add in Steve Coogan as an acerbic British journalist enlisted in her search, helping to steer the story away from the swamp of sentiment, and the fact that it's based on a true story, and you have Stephen Frears' triumphant, warm-hearted crowd-pleaser "Philomena".
  • By Matt Mueller
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  • August 31, 2013 6:34 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Casting Watch: Dustin Hoffman and Judi Dench to Star in Adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'Esio Trot' for the BBC

Dustin Hoffman and Judi Dench are set to star in a live-action adaptation of Roald Dahl's classic children's novel, "Esio Trot," for the BBC. Richard Curtis ("About Time," "Love Actually") is penning the adaptation along with Paul Mayhew-Archer.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • August 23, 2013 12:04 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Trailer Watch: Stephen Frears' 'Philomena,' Starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan

Check out the first trailer for Stephen Frears' "Philomena," starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan. The film, based on a true story, centers on Philomena Lee (Dench) who embarks with a political jouranalist (Coogan) on a journey through America to discover the truth about her son, who was taken away from her as a baby.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • August 12, 2013 1:17 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Cannes Market: Weinstein Co. Nabs Stephen Frears' 'Philomena,' Starring Dench and Coogan

More news is coming in from the ever-busy Cannes Market. The Weinstein Company has snapped up the latest Stephen Frears film, "Philomena," a drama starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, with plans for an Oscar-friendly fall 2013 release.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • May 23, 2013 12:53 PM
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  • 1 Comment

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