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Thompson on Hollywood

Bradley Cooper Is New Model Smart Star

As "Silver Linings Playbook" comes out on DVD, which earned Bradley Cooper his first best actor Oscar nomination, well-reviewed "Place Beyond the Pines" is playing around the country, "The Hangover Part III" hits theaters on May 24, and Steven Spielberg has picked as his next movie "American Sniper," which was developed by Cooper's Warner Bros. production company, about Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, an ace sniper who was tragically killed. This actor is clearly doing something right.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 6, 2013 6:17 AM
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Rebecca Eaton Talks 'Mystery' and the Return of Dorothy Sayers' Lord Peter Wimsey

Lord Peter Wimsey solved his first murder in 1923, made his debut on live television in 1947 and his television series debut on Masterpiece Theatre in 1972, and has just bounded into the 21st century in an Acorn Media DVD of that 1972-1975 television series starring Ian Carmichael. "Masterpiece" Executive Producer Rebecca Eaton, who will have “Making Masterpiece,” a memoir of her years as executive producer, published in October, says, that for a “Mystery” series to be successful, “It’s all about the actor.”
  • By Aljean Harmetz
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  • May 5, 2013 7:19 AM
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Immersed in Movies: Shane Black and Kevin Feige Talk Going Over the Edge in 'Iron Man 3,' Stark's Demons, VFX

With "Iron Man 3" already smashing box-office records internationally ahead of its domestic release Friday, grabbing more than $300 million in nine days (including the highest opening ever in China), Marvel's post-"Avengers" Phase 2 plan is off to a smashing start. The trick apparently was giving Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark an existential crisis, and no one was better suited to the task than director Shane Black, who, like Downey, knows a thing or two about confronting personal demons, which is what "Iron Man 3" is all about.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • May 3, 2013 2:35 PM
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CinemaCon Panel Decries Hollywood's Underserving Women, Chasing Young Males

At CinemaCon, The Hollywood Reporter editorial director Janice Min assembled and moderated a terrific panel, "Driving Financial Success: Women + Movies = Bigger Box Office," including Geena Davis, who runs the influential Institute on Gender and Media, director Paul Feig ("Bridesmaids," "The Heat"), Nina Jacobson ("The Hunger Games"), Amy Miles (CEO Regal Entertainment Group), and Vanessa Morrison (President, Fox Animation Studios), addressing the myriad issues women have with Hollywood, both behind and in front of the camera, including why the media likes to hate Anne Hathaway and Gwyneth Paltrow so much.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 2, 2013 4:18 PM
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EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: 'Kill List' Director Ben Wheatley Talks IFC's 'Sightseers'

Brit filmmaker Ben Wheatley had brought his prior two low-budget features, "Down Terrace" and "Kill List," to the Cannes market. Then he made his proper Cannes debut with "Sightseers" in the Director's Fortnight, an unexpected breakout during an unexceptional year. Then the film played the fest circuit, including Toronto. IFC opens the dark relationship comedy in New York and L.A.on May 10. See my flipcam interview with Wheatley below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 2, 2013 1:39 PM
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'What Maisie Knew' Writer Waited 18 Years to Make Film Adaptation of Henry James

Film has the power to take you inside someone's head. And that's what under-appreciated aces Scott McGehee and David Siegel do with well-reviewed "What Maisie Knew," which opens Friday. They show what a sweet smart young girl feels (sharp-as-tack Onata Aprile) as she watches her selfish, narcissistic parents, a rock star (Julianne Moore) and an art dealer (Steve Coogan), break up.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 1, 2013 4:24 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Gilles Jacob: Author, Cannes President, Raconteur, Lover of Cinema, One-Time Champion of Trier

Twenty-seven hours after he and Thierry Fremaux announced the films in the Official Selection at Cannes this year, Gilles Jacob convened two handfuls of journalists for a pleasingly intimate [read : elbow-to-elbow] promotional luncheon at "La Mediterranée." The restaurant, across the street from Jacob's publisher, Flammarion, figures in a memorable scene in Orson Welles' "F for Fake" and none other than Jean Cocteau designed the plates.
  • By Lisa Nesselson
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  • April 29, 2013 1:28 PM
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  • 5 Comments

CinemaCon: Directors Raimi, Stone and Del Toro Argue Horror, Provoking vs. Pleasing Audiences, Seeing Red

At CinemaCon last year the Filmmaker Forum included Martin Scorsese and Ang Lee, while this year directors Oliver Stone, Guillermo del Toro and Sam Raimi submitted to questioning by moderator Elvis Mitchell. Not surprisingly, all three reveal very different takes on how to please audiences--or whether to please audiences. And when Stone complained about bad conditions in some theaters around the country, the exhibitors weren't offended: they applauded.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 29, 2013 6:20 AM
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Skinny Matthew McConaughey Talks New Approach to Roles: 'Mud,' 'Dallas Buyer's Club,' 'Magic Mike' [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO]

When we sat down with Matthew McConaughey last November, he looked scarily thin. He'd lost 38 pounds to prep for passion project "The Dallas Buyer's Club," about a straight man fighting HIV who becomes a dealer in unapproved drugs to stave off AIDS. (The film just landed a distributor.) The actor was fasting and subsisting on a diet of fresh fish and a daily glass of red wine. He was down from 182 to 143 pounds as he was just about to start filming. (Flip cam video below.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 25, 2013 2:28 PM
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'Upstream Color' Star Amy Seimetz Talks Multitasking and Directing 'Sun Don't Shine' (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

Back in 2010, indie producer-writer-actress Amy Seimetz was living in Tampa, Florida and dealing with losses in her family, "a lot of anxiety," she says, when she realized that "I need to get out of acting in these movies... I need to direct my own thing." Her first feature "Sun Don't Shine" is a well-shot micro-budget portrait of a couple on the run for murder in the mold of James M. Cain's "The Postman Always Rings Twice"
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 24, 2013 4:13 PM
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