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Thompson on Hollywood

True Grit iPad App: Through The Lens of Jeff Bridges, The Dude Abides

True Grit iPad App: Through The Lens of Jeff Bridges, The Dude Abides
True Grit has an iPad app, Through The Lens of Jeff Bridges. Not only does this cowboy love to sing and play guitar, but he's a shutter-bug who has been taking on-set photos for years.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 21, 2011 1:11 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Willow Smith & Jay-Z's Annie Remake, Pattinson & Knightley for Cosmopolis, Cusack "Bad-Ass" Poe

- The question is, will Willow Smith in a remake of (Little Orphan) Annie turn out to be a box office hit that plays like an extended music video proving that Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith turned out some cute money makers? Or will it be a gritty, creative and inspired re-telling of the outdated musical and 1982 John Huston film? Jay-Z signed Willow Smith (so thank him for "Whip My Hair") and is in talks to do the music on the remake. If Jay-Z's 1998 Annie-theme-song-inspired "It's The Hard Knock Life" is an indication of how the film would feel, we'll support it all the way. If the remake is heading for Whip My Hair Annie we'll pass. Videos of both Jay-Z and Annie's versions of "The Hard Knock Life" are below.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 21, 2011 12:00 AM
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  • 6 Comments

Sacha Baron Cohen Follows Up Borat and Bruno with Saddam Hussein Adaptation The Dictator

Sacha Baron Cohen, of Borat and Bruno fame, will next star in Paramount's The Dictator, hitting theaters worldwide on May 11, 2012. Borat (Twentieth Century Fox) and Bruno (Universal) director Larry Charles is re-teaming with Cohen. The Dictator is based on Saddam Hussein best-selling novel, Zabibah and The King, and is described as "the heroic story of a dictator who risked his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed." Brings tears to our eyes already.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 20, 2011 4:51 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Oscar Watch Exclusive: Tom Hooper Talks Directing Style in The King's Speech

In a wide-ranging discussion about his directing approach on The King's Speech, Tom Hooper talks (in the video below) about framing star Colin Firth in wide-lens close-ups so that there was "nothing between him and the character." He mentions one of the visual themes in the film was finding "a visual analogue to stammering which became about framing Colin in relationship to negative space."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 20, 2011 4:17 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Behind the Visual Effects on Black Swan

Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan is one of those movies that is creepy, scary, believable and psychologically taut partly because he deploys 250 visual effects shots to such good effect. They aren't obvious, or on a big-budget scale. While we probably figured out that Nina morphing into a Black Swan at the film's finale is a visual effect (the most complex in the film), most of the film's effects are far more subtle.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 19, 2011 9:05 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Anne Hathaway Rises as Catwoman in Nolan's Next Dark Knight: Right Pick?

Versatile actress on-the-rise Anne Hathaway just nabbed one of the most coveted roles in Hollywood. She'll play Selina Kyle (aka Catwoman, previously played by Michelle Pfeiffer and Halle Berry) in The Dark Knight Rises across from Christian Bale and bad-guy Tom Hardy.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 19, 2011 6:51 AM
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  • 3 Comments

No Strings Attached Reviews: "Shockingly Good," "Zero Charisma," "Reversal of Gender Roles"

No Strings Attached Reviews: "Shockingly Good," "Zero Charisma," "Reversal of Gender Roles"
Who can blame moviegoers for being wary of any studio romantic comedy? While Fox Searchlight successfully subverted the genre with 500 Days of Summer and Disney's The Proposal proved that it is still possible to deliver the goods with smart filmmakers and stars, they are the exception that prove the rule: rom-coms usually suck.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 19, 2011 5:50 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Golden Globe Wins Impact Box Office and DVDs

While the Golden Globes don't have an impact on Academy Award nominations--ballots were due last Friday--they can give winners a serious box office boost, reports Anthony D'Alessandro. See the chart of this year's Golden Globes box office bumps below. In contrast to last year, which saw a number of contenders on DVD by Golden Globes night, distributors took the old-fashioned route this year and unspooled their kudo crop during the late fall/early winter frame known in the trade as Oscar Alley. They also returned to the tried-and-true platform release. That's due to the Academy’s expansion of the best picture category, which makes it easier for off-season fare to get recognized. Distributors don’t have to stress out about opening a high-brow title in the fall; they can comfortably choose the best release date which will maximize B.O. and still gain exposure on DVD at awards time.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • January 18, 2011 9:19 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Sony Pictures Classics Milks Globes Attention, Bier Heads to Sundance

Sony Pictures Classics Milks Globes Attention, Bier Heads to Sundance
Because the wily operators at Sony Pictures Classics, co-presidents Tom Bernard and Michael Barker, have thrown countless movies into the awards season market over the decades, they have mapped out what works best for lower-profile films. They are well-positioned now, for example, to take full advantage of the boost that Paul Giamatti's Golden Globe best actor comedy win gives Canadian dramedy Barney's Version. After a qualifying late December week's run, SPC opened the film this holiday weekend and did decent business. "I hope people will go to see it now," said Giamatti at the HBO Globes party.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 18, 2011 12:11 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Stieg Larsson's Millenium Series May See a Fourth Book

Eva Gabrielsson, partner of Stieg Larsson, the late author of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo Millennium series, tells The Guardian that 200 pages of a fourth book were written before he died of a heart attack at age 50, walking up a flight of stairs. Gabrielsson's upcoming memoir, Millennium, Stieg and Me, reveals the existence of these unseen pages (she refuses to provide plot details and is hanging on to Larsson's computer) and the fact that they "often wrote together."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 17, 2011 8:33 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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