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Thompson on Hollywood

Sean Penn Goes Liam Neeson in Open Road's Euro-Thriller 'The Gunman,' Will Direct 'Last Face'

Heading into the Cannes market, Open Road Films has scooped up all U.S. rights to the political actioner "The Gunman," starring Sean Penn and directed by Pierre Morel ("Taken," "Transporter"). Even philanthropists have to collect a payday once in a while, so Penn seems to be following the Liam Neeson playbook--but has attracted a stellar ensemble around him including Idris Elba, Javier Bardem, Ray Winstone and Mark Rylance. Penn is prepping his next directorial effort "Last Face," for sale in the Cannes market.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 8, 2014 2:05 PM
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Ben Stiller's 'The Secret Life of Walter Mitty' Joins Oscar Race as NYFF Centerpiece Gala (TRAILER)

As soon as I saw the impressive footage from "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" at CinemaCon, I knew Ben Stiller's ambitious cinematic retelling of the classic James Thurber short story was a potential Oscar Contender. And the New York Film Festival likes it enough to accord it the prestige Centerpiece Gala for a World Premiere on Saturday, October 5 at the 51st NYFF (September 27 – October 13). Opening night is "Captain Phillips." Closing night will be a high-profile fall title that that has not been announced for Venice or Toronto, such as Cannes hit "All is Lost," which I hear could earn Robert Redford an Oscar nomination for his virtually silent performance. Will David O. Russell's "American Hustle" be finished in time? "Foxcatcher"? "The Wolf of Wall Street"?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 1, 2013 1:35 PM
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'Gangster Squad' Early Reviews: Action-Packed and Over-The-Top, Movie Stars Playing Cops and Gangsters

Ruben Fleischer, director of "Zombieland," "30 Minutes or Less" and now "Gangster Squad," is facing some less-than-stellar early reviews for his would-be-noir thriller about the LAPD vs. gangster Mickey Cohen in 1940s Los Angeles, based on Paul Lieberman's book of the same name..
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 7, 2013 1:07 PM
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In the Works: Tucker for 'Intouchables,' Hathaway Confirms 'Robopocalypse,' 'Anchorman 2' Musical & Penn's Action Vehicle

A round-up of casting and development news, from Sean Penn's potential action franchise and Anne Hathaway's role in "Robopocalypse" to "Anchorman 2"'s musical numbers...
  • By Beth Hanna and Sophia Savage
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  • November 13, 2012 3:30 PM
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Q & A: Sorrentino Talks Sean Penn-Starrer 'This Must Be the Place'

One of the more intriguing films opening this November stars Sean Penn in the most unconventional role of his life. In "This Must Be The Place," from the Italian writer-director Paolo Sorrentino, he plays Cheyenne, a rich, retired rock star, now about 50, who chooses to hold on to the way he looked in his glory days – hair dyed black and back-combed, mascara, pancake make-up and scarlet lipstick. (The real rock icon he most closely resembles is the Cure’s Robert Smith.)
  • By David Gritten
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  • October 17, 2012 7:06 AM
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Actor Beware As Fassbender Joins Malick's Music Scene Romance; Cutting Room Victims Speak Out

  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 9, 2012 4:34 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Warner Bros. Pushes 'Gangster Squad' Release from September to January in Wake of Aurora Shootings

As expected, in the wake of the "Dark Knight Rises" Aurora shootings on July 19, Warner Bros. has opted to push back the release from September to January of Ruben Fleischer's "Gangster Squad." The film features a climactic sequence in which machine-gun-wielding gangsters surprise an audience from behind a movie screen and shoot into the theater.
  • By Anne Thompson and Beth Hanna
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  • July 27, 2012 1:43 PM
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Trailer Watch: 'Gangster Squad' Stars Penn, Gosling and Brolin as Cops and Mobsters

The trailer for Ruben Fleischer's based-on-a-true-story "Gangster Squad" (which was rumored to be heading to Cannes), reveals a starry ensemble of A-listers playing cops and mobsters, led by heavily accented scene-chewers Sean Penn and Ryan Gosling.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 10, 2012 11:57 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Confirmed: Sean Penn Goes to Cannes, for Haiti Benefit

Cannes Fest Director Thierry Fremaux was right when he suggested that Sean Penn would show in Cannes 2012. Sure enough, he's coming, not with his fall film "Gangster Squad," but as part of a first-of-its kind Carnival in Cannes benefit gala dinner on May 18 at the Festival Agora to raise money for three Haiti organizations:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 3, 2012 11:03 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Sean Penn's Peace Summit Award Acceptance Speech: Haiti, Systemic Moral Corruption, A Sacred Debt

On April 25, Sean Penn accepted the Peace Summit Award at the twelfth annual Nobel Peace Laureate's World Summit in Chicago. The award was given to him by Nobel Peace Laureate president Mikhail Gorbachev and Mr. Udo Janz. His Holiness The Dalai Lama was also present. Penn's acceptance speech is below:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • April 26, 2012 2:52 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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