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Thompson on Hollywood

Academy Unveils Dull New Oscar Poster

The Academy has unveiled a rather unimaginative poster for the 84th Academy Awards with the tagline: "Celebrate the movies in all of us."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2011 9:20 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Immersed in Movies: 'War Horse' Production Designer Rick Carter Talks Spielberg, War, 'Gone with the Wind'

Long-time Steven Spielberg collaborator, production designer Rick Carter, is obsessed with "the nature of conscience and the Goya-esque disasters of war."
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • December 28, 2011 8:15 AM
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  • 3 Comments

'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo': Zaillian Streamlines, Improves on Detective Duo in Larsson's Neo-Noir

Hollywood studio execs consider Steve Zaillian to be their number one literary adapter. He won the Oscar for "Schindler's List," after all, and could wind up with an Oscar nomination for "Moneyball" as well this year, which he serially co-wrote with another alpha Oscar-winner, Aaron Sorkin (the two have agreed only to talk about the film together).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 27, 2011 3:49 PM
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  • 3 Comments

The Challenger to The Artist is The Descendants

As Academy members get their ballots this week, if one movie can challenge "The Artist" in the race for the Best Picture Oscar, it's "The Descendants." For one thing, with $33 million in the till after the Christmas holidays, where it landed in the top ten, it's a box office hit in a way that "The Artist" is not.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 27, 2011 12:05 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Kenneth Branagh Asks: Would Marilyn Tweet? Talks Movies of Wallander and Shakespeare

It makes sense that Kenneth Branagh idolizes Sir Laurence Olivier. After all, both actors have directed themselves in Shakespeare's plays on stage and screen, including "Henry V."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 27, 2011 10:00 AM
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  • 1 Comment

John Knoll Talks 'Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol' and Brad Bird

For John Knoll, it didn't matter that "Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol" only required 700 VFX shots, and most of them invisible. It was the opportunity to work with director Brad Bird, whom he's known for years, on his first live-action film away from animation stardom at Pixar.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • December 23, 2011 6:35 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Video: Max von Sydow Talks the Silence of The Renter

I first encountered Max von Sydow on the big screen playing chess with Death in Ingmar Bergman's "The Seventh Seal" at The New Yorker in Manhattan when I was a teenager. He's surprised that I've seen it. "You watched black and white films?" he asks, admitting that this is his first flipcam interview.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 23, 2011 1:39 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Academy Names 97 Original Scores for Oscar Contention; Newman Lands Four Eligible Scores to Desplat's Three

Ninety-seven original scores are eligible to compete for the Oscar. Now the music branch will vote for the films that will make the top five to be announced nominations morning on January 24. The Academy deems eligible scores that are substantially original. Thomas Newman edged out Alexandre Desplat with four eligible films to three, while as expected, John Williams has two films, Spielberg's "War Horse" and "The Adventures of Tintin." Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross are likely to to earn a nomination for David Fincher's "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." 
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 22, 2011 8:44 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Deal Update: Sony Pictures Classics Acquires Woody Allen's 'Nero Fiddled,' 'We Need to Talk About Kevin' Moves Up, 'Outrun' Gets Date

With Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris" the year's highest-grossing independent film (almost $60 million domestic) and a strong Oscar contender with four Golden Globe nominations, it's no surprise that Sony Pictures Classics will release his next indie funded film, "Nero Fiddled."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2011 7:52 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Oscar Watch: Passion Votes Drive Exciting Race, Likely Eight Best Picture Nominees--Not 'Bridesmaids'

The change in Oscar voting rules, so that only films earning hundreds of number one votes will land a Best Picture slot-- leads to more speculation and excitement than ever this year. But it's already clear that there will be eight nominees.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2011 3:10 PM
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  • 5 Comments

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