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China's Wanda Group to Acquire Theater Chain AMC Entertainment to Form Largest Global Cinema Giant

It's a small world after all. The dateline on the press release reads "BEIJING, China and KANSAS CITY, Mo." That tells you everything you need to know about the transformative news that Chinese conglomerate Wanda, which runs China's largest theater chain, will acquire AMC Entertainment, America's second-largest theater chain.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 21, 2012 7:49 AM
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Arthouse Audit: Who Needs Festivals? Ongoing 'Marigold' Trumps Cannes & Toronto Standouts

While the US indie acquisition world hunts for new hits at Cannes, a film that bypassed festivals is the standout among recent releases. "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" in its third weekend also continues to parallel same-day opener "The Avengers" in looking good in an otherwise underperforming market, and then some.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 20, 2012 1:46 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Weekend Box Office: 'Avengers' Annihilates 'Battleship,' Which Opens Lower than 'John Carter'

Marking its third consecutive weekend in the top spot, Disney’s “The Avengers” continued to annihilate the competition and dominate at North American box office. The Marvel Studio’s production racked up an estimated $55 million, advancing its cume to a stellar $457.1 million.
  • By Brian Fuson
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  • May 20, 2012 1:30 PM
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Dear Reggae Fans: You Can Host a Screening of 'Marley'

Gathr, a pioneer company in movies on demand programming, announced that they will allow fans to bring the critically-acclaimed documentary "Marley" to their local movie venue. "Marley" explores the rich life of Bob Marley, a towering influence in music history. The film was made with unprecedented support from the Marley family.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • May 19, 2012 7:39 AM
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Weekend Preview: 'Dictator,' 'Polisse,' Pregnant Movie Stars & Vibrators

"The Dictator" rules with provocateur Sacha Baron Cohen, and here's what you'll get from "What To Expect When You're Expecting": easy laughs, strategically placed music and one-dimensional characters. Jennifer Lopez is the soul of the movie (if there is one), Chace Crawford is the eye candy and Elizabeth Banks is the lovable mess. The rest are forgettable. You'd think a movie about the creation of vibrators, "Hysteria," would be hilarious, sexy and frank. Instead, it's lands between dull and creepy (even if it is the tame vibrator comedy you could watch with your mother). Per usual, the real gems arriving this weekend are foreign: "Polisse," "Beyond the Black Rainbow" and "Elena" - Criticwire's pick of the week. There's also "Animerican Animal," "Viriginia" and "Battleship." Details and trailers below:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 17, 2012 4:05 PM
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Career Watch: The Commodification of Johnny Depp

Johnny Depp's career has been set on cruise control for years, and it's worked splendidly. He's Hollywood's highest-paid actor along with Will Smith, received not one but two Golden Globe nominations in 2011 (for two of his worst films) and is happy getting paid stupid amounts of money even though he agrees it's ridiculous and does not find it stimulating.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 14, 2012 4:12 PM
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  • 7 Comments

Magnolia's on a Roll, from 'Jiro Dreams of Sushi' and 'Marley' to Twisty Stylish Thriller 'Headhunters'

"Headhunters" is a smart pick-up. It's basically the most commercial movie Norway has to offer, based on Joe Nesbo's global detective bestseller, starring rising star Aksel Hennie ("Max Manus") and Danish "Game of Thrones" baddie Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, and directed with style by top commercial director Morten Tyldum.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 13, 2012 10:41 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Arthouse Audit: 'Marigold Hotel' Still Torrid Amid Weak Specialty Field

The strong expansion for "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" was marked by a dramatic jump from 27 to 178 theaters, with an estimated PSA (per screen average) of $13,000 or better (likely) for the weekend. Quick expansions for a film like this aren't typical, and the configuration here doesn't offer easy comparisons.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 13, 2012 3:55 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Weekend Box Office: 'Avengers' Joins $1 Billion Club After 19 Days UPDATED

Disney’s “The Avengers” boasted the biggest second weekend in box office history with a stunning $103.2 million, down a mild 50% from its debut and bringing the 10 day cume for the Marvel Studios film to an unprecedented $373.2 million domestic and $628.9 million internationally.
  • By Brian Fuson
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  • May 13, 2012 12:33 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Trailer Watch: Pixar's 'Brave' Will Be One of the Summer's Top Performers

Why isn't "Brave" showing at Cannes? Because it's set to open the Edinburgh Film Festival instead just after its June 22 stateside release. Pixar's 13th film and first fairy tale, "Brave," is sure to be yet another top box office performer by summer's end,
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 12, 2012 2:03 PM
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  • 1 Comment

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