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Thompson on Hollywood

'Philomena,' Harvey Weinstein's Best Oscar Hope, Comes on Strong; Why Coogan Dared to be Sincere

Steve Coogan is full of surprises. As an actor who also writes and produces, we have a sense of him from the roles he plays--he tends to be smart, acerbic, a bit of an asshole. So heart-tuggingly sincere "Philomena," which earned Golden Globes nominations last week for not only Best Drama and Actress Judi Dench but for Coogan and Jeff Pope's screenplay, is not exactly what we expect from him.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 16, 2013 11:58 AM
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Casting Watch: Dustin Hoffman Joins Stephen Frears' Untitled Lance Armstrong Biopic UPDATED

UPDATE: Dustin Hoffman has joined the cast of the currently in-production untitled Lance Armstrong film being directed by Stephen Frears. This marks Hoffman's second time working with Frears, his first on 1992's "The Accidental Hero."
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • December 6, 2013 11:10 AM
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WATCH: First Clip from Stephen Frears' Oscar Hopeful 'Philomena,' with Judi Dench and Steve Coogan

The first clip from Brit director Stephen Frears' dramedy "Philomena," which debuted at Venice to raves and will play TIFF this month, has arrived. The Weinstein Company has slated the film, starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, for a December 25 stateside release.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • September 3, 2013 12:57 PM
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Venice Film Festival 2013 Review: 'Philomena' Is A Triumph

If you were seeking a guaranteed recipe for box-office success, casting Judi Dench as a sweet little old Irish lady trying to track down the son she was forced into giving up for adoption decades earlier sounds like the winning ingredient. Add in Steve Coogan as an acerbic British journalist enlisted in her search, helping to steer the story away from the swamp of sentiment, and the fact that it's based on a true story, and you have Stephen Frears' triumphant, warm-hearted crowd-pleaser "Philomena".
  • By Matt Mueller
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  • August 31, 2013 6:34 AM
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  • 1 Comment

WATCH: First Trailer for Stephen Frears' 'Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight,' Starring Glover, Plummer, Langella and More

A first full trailer has arrived for Stephen Frears' "Muhammad Ali's Greatest Fight," centering on Heavy Weight champ Ali's 1967 decision to refuse to enlist for Vietnam service -- which had legal ramifications all the way to the Supreme Court. Christopher Plummer, Danny Glover, Frank Langella and more star. Watch below.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • August 27, 2013 1:03 PM
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Trailer Watch: Stephen Frears' 'Philomena,' Starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan

Check out the first trailer for Stephen Frears' "Philomena," starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan. The film, based on a true story, centers on Philomena Lee (Dench) who embarks with a political jouranalist (Coogan) on a journey through America to discover the truth about her son, who was taken away from her as a baby.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • August 12, 2013 1:17 PM
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Cannes Market: Weinstein Co. Nabs Stephen Frears' 'Philomena,' Starring Dench and Coogan

More news is coming in from the ever-busy Cannes Market. The Weinstein Company has snapped up the latest Stephen Frears film, "Philomena," a drama starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, with plans for an Oscar-friendly fall 2013 release.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • May 23, 2013 12:53 PM
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Christopher Nolan's Top Ten Films for Criterion: Lang, Welles, Malick Make the Cut [Video]

Director Christopher Nolan has selected his Top Ten films for Criterion. His choices are varied, and the themes unsurprising: morality, mortality, life-or-death decisions, larger-than-life situations, and characters pushed to their total limits. The films he selected -- from Erich von Stroheim in 1924 and Orson Welles in 1955 to Terrence Malick in 1998 -- share ambition. Watch the trailers and clips from Nolan's selections below. The full list is here, published in the Criterion newsletter.
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • January 30, 2013 6:57 PM
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  • 2 Comments

In the Works: Stephen Frears to Direct 'Philomena,' Starring Coogan and Dench

Stephen Frears has signed on to direct the Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope-penned "Philomena," a mother-son drama starring Coogan and Judi Dench. The script is an adaptation of Martin Sixsmith's "The Lost Child of Philomena Lee," and follows the true story of Sixsmith's wife's search for the son she gave up for adoption.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • October 1, 2012 4:23 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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