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Thompson on Hollywood

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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EXCLUSIVE: Paul Schrader Talks Biopic of Legendary Tiny Dancer Kschessinska

While he didn't make the schlep to Cannes this year, writer-director Paul Schrader has some skin in the Cannes game. He's announced that he's writing an English-language biopic of Kschessinska, the legendary prima ballerina and mistress to the last Russian Tsar, for a film financed by the Kremlin-backed Culture & Arts Fund. Never before has an A-list American screenwriter written a Russian film about an iconic figure from Russian history. The film will star a mixed Russian and American cast. A director has not been signed.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 20, 2012 2:32 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Relativity Acquires US Rights to 'Paranoia' with Liam Hemsworth, Gary Oldman, Harrison Ford, Lucas Till

Relativity Media has acquired U.S. rights to distribute "Paranoia," a thriller starring Liam Hemsworth ("The Hunger Games"), Oscar-nominee Gary Oldman ("The Dark Knight"), Oscar-nominee Harrison Ford ("Indiana Jones") and Lucas Till ("X-Men: First Class"). Robert Luketic ("21") will direct and begin production this summer.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • May 19, 2012 12:36 PM
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Weekly Wrap: Interviews, In the Works, Trailer Watch, and Everything Cannes

Weekend Preview this week highlights "Dictator," "Polisse," pregnant movie stars and vibrators. Everything Cannes: Wes Anderson goes camping with his 1960s-era Cannes opener, "Moonrise Kingdom." Our TOH interview with the director is here; he talks "Moonrise Kingdom" and joining the Cannes auteur pantheon.
  • By TOH!
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  • May 19, 2012 7:33 AM
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Duplass Brothers Kidnap Hollywood and The New York Times Magazine

They call each other Dupes and keep their brotherly spirit at the fore. In a New York Times Magazine profile of the Mark and Jay Duplass, Gavin Edwards details the pair's evolution from a budget of $3 (2002's "This is John") to $40 million comedies. Their partnership is thrilling to watch (our video interview with Jay and Mark here). As Edwards writes, "While rock ’n’ roll brothers (the Davies, the Gallaghers) seem to thrive on fistfights, filmmaking brothers (the Coens, the Farrellys) often achieve a state of mind-meld."
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • May 18, 2012 7:21 PM
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John Waters is Hitchhiking; Indie Band Picks Him Up in Ohio

Baltimore's own indie auteur John Waters ("Pink Flamingos") likes the occasional hitchhike.  An indie band called Here We Go Magic recently picked him up in Ohio and took him on a six hour road trip as Waters entertained the group telling stories. He has hitchhiked with Patty Hearst, he wears a hat that says "Scum of the Earth," and he treated everyone to breakfast at an Italian deli. Here We Go Magic bassist Jen Turner reported to DCist about their journey.  Excerpts of her interview are below:
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • May 18, 2012 6:32 PM
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IN THE WORKS: 'Blade Runner' Sequel, Blanchett-Wasikowska Lesbian Romance, Paltrow for Picasso & Dujardin's Next

Ridley Scott has an idea for a sequel to his classic 1982 film "Blade Runner," and the original's writer Hampton Fancher is in talks to put it into action on paper. Scott and Alcon Entertainment say only that the story would pick up "some years after the first film concluded."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 18, 2012 6:23 PM
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Zaillian's Film Rites Banner Signs with Fox; Whither 'The Girl Who Played with Fire?'

There's no reason why screenwriter Steve Zaillian ("Schindler's List," "Gangs of New York") and his Film Rites banner with Garrett Basch shouldn't sign a first-look deal with 20th Century Fox. The question is, why didn't Zaillian go with Sony, which backed his Oscar-nominated script for "Moneyball" and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo"?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 18, 2012 3:28 AM
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Cannes Market: Elizabeth Banks Stars in Alan Ball's 'What's the Matter with Margie?'

A hit like "The Hunger Games" lifts all boats, and comedic actress Elizabeth Banks is one of them. She's set to star in "Six Feet Under" and "True Blood" creator Alan Ball's next dark comedy, "What's the Matter with Margie," which Myriad Pictures is selling at Cannes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 18, 2012 2:53 AM
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Cannes Market: Robert Altman Documentary In the Works, 'Bob would be happy'

A documentary on director Robert Altman will be produced by Sphinx Productions and directed by Ron Mann ("Twist," "Comic Book Confidential"). The film will explore the life and work of Altman, who gave the world "M*A*S*H," "McCabe and Mrs. Miller," "Nashville," "The Player," "Short Cuts," "Gosford Park" and "A Prairie Home Companion."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 17, 2012 5:18 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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