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Thompson on Hollywood

Oscar Watch: Revolutionary Road Review

I saw Revolutionary Road over the weekend, and moderated a panel Saturday with director Sam Mendes, Leonardo DiCaprio (nominated three times), Kate Winslet (nominated five times), Oscar-winner Kathy Bates, theater actor Michael Shannon (W.), cinematographer Roger Deakins (nominated seven times) and composer Thomas Newman (nominated eight times).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 18, 2008 5:51 AM
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Oscar Watch: Early Benjamin Button Review

EDITED TO READ: So, to be clear: THIS IS NOT A REVIEW. Not a Variety review or a review at all. What it is: Notes from a viewer's responses to a screening of David Fincher's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, starring Brad Pitt as the man who ages backwards. Get annoyed, growl, sneer, be jealous... whatever you like, just don't call it a review. The person is neither a reviewer nor associated with the film in any way.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 12, 2008 5:40 AM
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Oscar Watch: Doubt Reviews

Let the fur fly. In the first review of Doubt, Todd McCarthy is casting seeds of doubt on Meryl Streep's performance.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 6, 2008 5:27 AM
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Frost/Nixon's Sheen: Character Chameleon

It's an honorable profession, charactor actor. No shame in it.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 5, 2008 5:24 AM
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Oscar Watch: Milk Scores

Milk is far better than I was expecting it to be, even after reading Todd McCarthy's positive review. It had been described to me as small, political, an acting vehicle for Sean Penn. It's far more than that.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 3, 2008 5:21 AM
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Oscar Watch: Scott Thomas Leads Actress Field

When it comes to this year's Oscar race, don't believe everything you read. So many movies haven't been seen yet, from Revolutionary Road and The Reader to Doubt and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. I hear Kate Winslet, Meryl Streep and Cate Blanchett are all strong Best Actress contenders, but until we see the films...everyone's talking through their hat.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 22, 2008 4:33 AM
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Toronto Watch: Wrestler Screens Well

Buyers packed into Toronto's Elgin Theatre Sunday night for the North American premiere of Darren Aronofsky's The Wrestler, which arrived at the Fest with a Golden Lion from the Venice Film Festival. Aronofsky tried to cool the crowd down, saying, "There's no way we're going to live up to that hype. It's a gentle, small film." French sales company Wild Bunch believed in the film, he said, and if any North American buyer "is interested, I have a phone number for you afterward."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 7, 2008 7:36 AM
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Toronto Watch: Actresses Weisz, Hawkins, Williams Will Pop

Given the hundreds of movies unspooling in Toronto, key press in LA and NY are getting a head start on some of the screenings that will get piled up there. It's impossible to see everything.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 27, 2008 5:38 AM
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AFI Tributes Beatty; Clinton, Fonda and Nicholson Show

Yes, Jack Nicholson showed up after the Laker game, slightly hoarse, to honor his bud, Warren Beatty, at the 36th annual AFI Life Achievement fete. Count on Beatty, 71, to attract smarter-than-average tributes. "You drag me in with all these politicos," said Nicholson, who earned an Oscar nomination for Beatty's historic drama Reds. "I'm representing all the fair-weather friends you have in the city who went to the Lakers game."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 13, 2008 5:47 AM
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Avatar's James Cameron Talks 3D

Variety tech wonk David S. Cohen conducts an in-depth interview with James Cameron about something he knows a little bit about: 3D. An early believer and innovator in the technology that looks to revolutionize the way many movies are made, Cameron expounds at length. (He reveals some tech details on his next 3D effort, the long-awaited Avatar, due in 2009.) Here's a sampling of their email exchange:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 11, 2008 6:05 AM
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