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Thompson on Hollywood

Pharrell Williams, Nominated for 'Despicable Me 2,' Will Perform on Oscar Night (VIDEO)

Triple threat singer, songwriter and producer Pharrell Williams is set to perform his Academy Award-nominated song "Happy" from "Despicable Me 2" on Oscar night, March 2. Can he beat "Frozen" juggernaut "Let it Go?"
  • By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio
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  • February 4, 2014 12:22 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Producers Guild To Give Visionary Award to Illumination Czar Chris Meledandri (TRAILER)

The Producers Guild Visionary Award recognizes Chris Meledandri "as one of the definitive producers of contemporary animation." Why is he getting this now? Illumination's latest Universal blockbuster "Despicable Me 2" is in the running for an animated Oscar, and is the 5th highest-grossing animated film of all time worldwide at the global box office.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 28, 2013 1:48 PM
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Weekend Box Office Top Ten: Sequels to 'Despicable Me' and 'Grown Ups' Push Original 'Pacific Rim' to Soft Third

Three reliables led a strong summer weekend box office: sequels, animation and ensemble comedies. "Despicable Me 2" came out on top in a close race, with Adam Sandler and company marking a strong second with "Grown Ups 2" (Sony). Warner Bros.' costly original "Pacific Rim" exceeded its estimates with a still soft $38.3 million and a long way to go to before delivering a profit. Twentieth Century Fox's "The Heat" continued to show strength, moving ahead of both Disney's "The Lone Ranger" and "Monsters University."
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 14, 2013 1:25 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Weekend Box Office: 'Despicable Me 2' Overperforms, Leaves 'The Lone Ranger' in the Dust

Universal's much-bigger-than-expected "Despicable Me 2" led the holiday weekend, outgrossing Disney's disappointing "The Lone Ranger" by two thirds. (It has amassed a remarkable $142 million in five days, while "The Lone Ranger" scored $48 million total.) Despite "The Lone Ranger," which marks the third big-budget studio disappointment of the summer, the three-day post-Independence Day holiday weekend far outscored last year's box office top ten by 12 %.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 7, 2013 1:57 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Holiday Box Office: 'Despicable Me 2' Leads Strong Two-Day Total; 'Lone Ranger' Trails Distant Second

The Fourth of July holiday box office was dominated by Universal's "Despicable 2," which did just under half of the total business for the top 10 films for Wednesday (its opening day) and Thursday. Box office boomed for one of the best summer boosts above last year so far. The two-day take was around $130 million. The roughly $60 million total for Independence Day -- an uneven holiday with all the competing activities -- was record level, and in terms of total attendance (after adjusting for ticket price increases and surcharges) the best since 2007 (which saw the release of the first "Transformers").
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 5, 2013 3:47 PM
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  • 1 Comment

This Weekend: Head to Disney's Big-Budget Western 'The Lone Ranger,' Sundance Hit 'The Way, Way Back' and 'Despicable Me 2'

This holiday weekend, two family-oriented tentpoles will be vying for American eyeballs: Disney's cinematic "The Lone Ranger" and Universal's "Despicable Me 2." We recommend both.
  • By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio
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  • July 3, 2013 2:19 PM
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  • 1 Comment

'Despicable Me 2' Retains Original's Charm--and Minions

A half hour into “Despicable Me 2,” I had no idea what the story was. I didn’t care very much – directors Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud obviously knew that regular doses of Minion magic would mollify even the most nettlesome demand for a storyline– but the prospect of having to write a plot summary was making me crazy. What we get in “DM2” is what we loved about the first film – chiefly, the gibberish-burbling taxi-yellow Minions, who provide so much of the physical comedy, and whose only passing familiarity with any known language makes what might have been routine shtick into something delirious
  • By John Anderson
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  • June 30, 2013 3:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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