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Julie & Julia: Women and Food

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood April 14, 2009 at 5:39AM

On its surface, a movie about a dowdy middle-aged woman chef--even French cooking icon Julia Child--may not seem commercial. But several elements in this mix could make Julie & Julia, which Sony opens August 7, commercial indeed.
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Julie and julia44482053

On its surface, a movie about a dowdy middle-aged woman chef--even French cooking icon Julia Child--may not seem commercial. But several elements in this mix could make Julie & Julia, which Sony opens August 7, commercial indeed.

1. Women


One factor that people often ignore when they look at the string of recent hit chick flix such as The Devil Wears Prada, Marley & Me, Sex and the City and Mamma Mia! is one huge demo in the marketplace--which television is smartly tapping into--Boomer women. Older females adore 50ish movie star Meryl Streep, who's on a roll these days, and they also dig 60ish writer-director Nora Ephron, who boasts rom-com cred from her two biggest hits, 1993's Sleepless in Seattle and 1998's You've Got Mail. (It's been a while, though.)

2. Food


Movies about food are also audience faves, from Taiwan's Eat Drink Man Woman, Japan's Tampopo, Denmark's Babette's Feast and Germany's Mostly Martha to American cook-fests Big Night, Fried Green Tomatoes and Mystic Pizza. Ephron talks about cooking Julia Child recipes on the on the set of Julie & Julia. It's a smart way to get audiences salivating.

What are your favorite food movies?

What's your favorite food movie?
Big Night
Like Water for Chocolate
Chocolat
Tom Jones
Mostly Martha
Tampopo
Eat Drink Man Woman
Babette's Feast
Fried Green Tomatoes
The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover
  
pollcode.com free polls

This article is related to: Women in Film, Headliners, Genres, Awards, Oscars, Biopics, Meryl Streep


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.