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Thompson on Hollywood

'Holy Motors' Trailer, Review ("bonkers, delirious, pretentious"); Carax Q & A (VIDEO)

Indomina has released an exhilarating U.S. trailer for Leos Carax's "Holy Motors," which debuted on the fest circuit last May in Cannes (where it did not score a prize) and wound up playing Fantastic Fest as well as New York, which tells you something. Matt Mueller's review calls the film "bonkers" and "equal parts delirious and pretentious." Indiewire's Eric Kohn draws some answers out of the notoriously press shy Carax here.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 21, 2012 2:20 PM
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John Hawkes Finds Pain and Growth in 'The Sessions'; Helen Hunt Also Strong Oscar Contender (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

Fox Searchlight is no slouch at backing Oscar contenders (see "Slumdog Millionaire," "The Descendants," "The Wrestler"). Back in January at Sundance they scooped up "The Sessions," a small film from Australian writer-director Ben Lewin, who had not directed a feature film in 18 years. Why? Because it had the ring of authenticity.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 18, 2012 4:17 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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Judi Dench Talks Feeling "drunk with power" as M, Intimidated by Clint Eastwood

With "Skyfall" earning rave early reviews, and this year's global indie blockbuster "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," it's understandable that Judi Dench, 77, recently told the Guardian that she "never wants to stop working." The most recent Bond installment is the seventh 007 outing for Dench, and features a particularly hard-hitting storyline for her dry, steely-nerved M.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • October 15, 2012 5:15 PM
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Oscar Watch: 'Argo' Director Affleck & Editor Goldenberg Talk Reality vs. Comedy (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

"I maybe have matured," Affleck says of his pursuit of smart quality modest-budget movies--he calls $44-million Mideast thriller "Argo" "a labor of love"-- designed to stand the test of time like the 70s classics he reveres.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 15, 2012 2:27 PM
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'Flight' Review; Zemeckis, Washington and Cheadle Talk at NYFF Press Conference (VIDEO)

Denzel Washington waltzed in late to the press conference following the NYFF screening of the Robert Zemeckis-directed "Flight." The audience didn't mind of course, because he's Denzel: His appearance prompted wild applause which immediately drowned out the voice of screenwriter John Gatins.
  • By Sheerly Avni
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  • October 14, 2012 3:59 PM
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Alan Arkin Takes Affleck's 'Argo' Seriously: "It's not a spoof, satire, or parody" (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

As revealed in our conversation below, Alan Arkin takes serious comedy seriously, and that's the secret at the heart of Ben Affleck's "Argo." Arkin doesn't buy the idea that he and Goodman are participating in a Hollywood parody or spoof or satire. Or even comic relief for that matter.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 12, 2012 7:42 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Immersed in Movies: Screenwriter John August Talks Burton's 'Frankenweenie,' 'Big Fish' Musical, and Industry Frustration

"Frankenweenie" scribe John August was willing to concede industry frustration when we spoke even before the lackluster opening for Tim Burton's critically praised stop-motion animated feature (which was even outgunned by animated rival "Hotel Transylvania"). It's increasingly difficult to get quality features produced, let alone commercially embraced.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • October 11, 2012 3:44 PM
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Video Clip: Ben Stiller Talks About His 'New Yorker' Profile

During last week's The New Yorker Festival 2012, Ben Stiller and Letter from California columnist Tad Friend talked backstage about the magazine's recent profile of the actor, comedian, writer and director (clip below). They got along, apparently, although both mentioned nursing migraines after a four to five hour interview.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 8, 2012 1:21 PM
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A Candid Mila Kunis Covers 'Esquire' As the Sexiest Woman Alive

The November issue of "Esquire", which names Mila Kunis as the sexist woman alive, begins with her recount of the odious pressure she received while promoting 2008 action film "Max Payne." When she refused to pose for the cover of a certain magazine, she explained that standing up to a few jerks was one of her most important career moves:
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • October 8, 2012 1:16 PM
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  • 3 Comments

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