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Thompson on Hollywood

SXSW: Hill and Rogen Talk Observe and Report

Monday morning I interviewed Observe and Report writer-director Jody Hill (The Foot Fist Way) and star Seth Rogen. The movie played well on Monday night at the Paramount. It's a very dark reality-based comedy about fantasy and self-delusion, basically. The flipcam interview is broken into two parts:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 17, 2009 7:16 AM
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Hail Fredonia! Hollywood Depression Economics

"We're in the money," sang Ginger Rogers in the escapist musical Gold Diggers of 1933. Luxurious Busby Berkeley musical comedies were big hits during the Depression.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 12, 2008 12:40 PM
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Comic-Con: Comedies Pineapple Express, Tropic Thunder and the City of Ember Train

I saw three summer comedies in a row this week, two from the Judd Apatow factory, Step Brothers and Pineapple Express, plus Ben Stiller's Tropic Thunder, which screened at Comic-Con last night (Pineapple Express screens here too). UPDATE: Here's Todd McCarthy's Tropic Thunder review.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 24, 2008 8:05 AM
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Summer Begins: Iron Man, Speed Racer, and Superheroes

Let the summer games begin. The LAT's Ken Turan takes on summer blockbuster syndrome, while The Huffington Post addresses summer superheroes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • May 1, 2008 5:48 AM
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Leatherheads: Clooney Goes Retro

George Clooney is the sort of movie star who gets to do what he wants, especially if he's willing to direct himself. In this case the period football comedy Leatherheads had been languishing on the shelf at Universal for decades, and was going to be directed by Steven Soderbergh at one time. Clooney's version is a sweetly daffy valentine to classic Hollywood screwball comedies, Coen brothers comedies and romantic comedies. Clooney stars as a handsome over-the-hill football player who's pretty smart but gets beat up on the playing field and takes plenty of pratfalls and romances a wise-cracking reporter (Renee Zellweger).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 1, 2008 4:45 AM
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Holiday Weekend Update: Good and Plenty

There's plenty to see in theaters this weekend.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 21, 2008 5:40 AM
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Judd Apatow Alert: Four Comedies Coming

We all know producer Judd Apatow has four movies coming up in 2008. But which ones will work at the boxoffice? By my guess, all of them. It's just a case of how high is high.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 19, 2008 5:48 AM
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WGA Awards: Cody vs. Gilroy, Coens vs. Harwood

You may recall that because of the Writers strike, the WGA Awards show was cancelled. How odd that the same day that on the WGA members are deciding the fate of the strike, they are also announcing the awards (at 7 PM Pacific).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 9, 2008 7:36 AM
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Oscar Watch: Juno

Various Oscar prognosticators suggest that Juno is too much of a teen flick to play to senior Academy voters. Judging from how the pic performed at my class this week, which reps the older demo quite well, that will not be an issue. This movie will build into a huge hit across many demos. Imagine that I served up one serious fall film after another to the class, from Michael Clayton, Reservation Road, Slipstream, Grace is Gone, Lions for Lambs, and The Kite Runner to The Diving Bell and the Butterfly...and then they got Juno.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 7, 2007 5:51 AM
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TIFF: Audience vs. Critics

Three tracks of movies screen in Toronto: high-brow innovative cinema to intrigue critics and cinephiles, movies with news content for the hungry media, and pics that wow the film fans in theaters. The most fortunate--breakouts like Jason Reitman's Juno, Joe Wright's Atonement, Craig Gillespie's Lars and the Real Girl, and Sean Penn's Into the Wild--do it all.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 12, 2007 8:20 AM
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