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Thompson on Hollywood

Magnolia Buys Jordan's Ondine, Starring Farrell

Magnolia Buys Jordan's Ondine, Starring Farrell
Finally, months after its debut at the Toronto International Film Festival, Magnolia Pictures has landed U.S. rights to Neil Jordan’s Ondine, starring Colin Farrell in a rare performance in his native dialect. (The film scored eight nominations for the Irish Film and Television Awards.) According to Movieline's Stu VanAirsdale, the final cut of the Paramount Vantage leftover will be different from the one screened in Toronto:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 14, 2010 3:06 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Trailer Watch: Burton's Alice in Wonderland Stars Depp as the Mad Hatter

Tim Burton was born to direct Alice in Wonderland, and Johnny Depp in Tammy Faye makeup isn't bad casting as the Mad Hatter either. Here's the latest trailer. Yes, I know another studio is shamelessly exploiting a brand name. But this "package" I want to see. Burton took elements from both the Lewis Carroll classic and Through the Looking Glass, including lines and imagery from The Jabberwocky. Mia Wasikowska plays Alice, Stephen Fry voices the Cheshire Cat, Anne Hathaway is the White Queen and Michael Sheen is the White Rabbit. On this film, Burton is handling more CG effects and green screen than ever before. He doesn't do much mo-cap, mostly pure animation. Disney releases the film on March 5.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 16, 2009 6:50 AM
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Oscar Talk Episode Ten: Avatar, Tyson, Animation

In this week's podcast, In Contention's Kris Tapley and I talk animation (20 submissions), supporting actor and actress, 2012, Mike Tyson's LAX brawl and the four Oscar heavyweights yet to be screened, including likely last contender out of the gate, James Cameron's big-budget Avatar.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 14, 2009 2:27 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Empire Covers Avatar

The last wide-circulation English-language movie magazine standing is published in the UK: Empire. So that's where you go for your early Avatar cover story .
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 28, 2009 6:08 AM
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  • 0 Comments

John Carter of Mars Adds Morton, Walker, West

I was brought up in Manhattan by a single Dad. His best pal Jerry Rubenstein's idea of a birthday present for an eight-year-old, girl or boy, was Tarzan of the Apes, by Edgar Rice Burroughs. I scarfed it up and read every single book ever written by Burroughs, especially his Barsoom Martian novels. I read The Chessmen of Mars over and over. Burroughs took you into an exotic world, much as Burroughs fan James Cameron does in Avatar, or Wall-E writer-director Andrew Stanton will do in his first live-action feature, a film take on John Carter of Mars. In both stories, an American visits a faraway planet inhabited by strange creatures. In John Carter of Mars, co-written by Mark Andrews, Civil War hero John Carter is transported to the red planet Barsoom, where he must adapt, and meets a princess.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 24, 2009 6:48 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Twitter Effect, Toronto Preview, Hardwicke, Singer Choose Branded Projects, Moore Trailer

Twitter Effect, Toronto Preview, Hardwicke, Singer Choose Branded Projects, Moore Trailer
Hollywood execs are coming to the uncomfortable realization that the Twitter Effect will inexorably change their business. No more tricking audiences into buying one weekend on a bad movie, they're realizing. Now movies may actually have to be good. The horror! Michael Sragow lays out the ways that Twittering on a Friday has changed the movie landscape.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 21, 2009 2:39 AM
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  • 6 Comments

Mad Men's Hamm Goes to the Movies

As Mad Men Season 3 gets under way to huge numbers (yes!), Jon Hamm is wasting no time chasing a movie career--which was stymied by last year's labor unrest. I have high hopes for the first film, The Town, director Ben Affleck's romantic thriller set in Boston, which starts shooting in September. I'm less confident in Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch, a 50s action fantasy for Warners. Hamm has enormous potential--he could be the next George Clooney-- but has to pick right while he has the chance.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 19, 2009 2:27 AM
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  • 1 Comment

#SDCC Comic-Con Separates Top Draws Avatar and Twilight: New Moon

Last year, I remember a few diehard fanboys mocking me when I flagged Twilight as a big deal at Comic-Con. The power of Twilight fans became clear as thousands of girls screamed their lungs out for emerging star Rob Pattinson. Helping to avert certain traffic gridlock, Comic-Con organizers pushed apart back-to-back Thursday panels for Twilight: New Moon and James Cameron's Avatar, by far the most anticipated two panels of the Con. Many were concerned that the threatened tsunami of fans surging toward Hall H Thursday morning (many of them female, in this very male-dominated universe) would make it tough to also cover Disney's 11 AM 3-D panel (Zemeckis's A Christmas Carol, Burton's Alice in Wonderland) and James Cameron's Avatar on the same day. Now New Moon is at 1:45 pm and Avatar is at 3:00 pm. Covering media may have a tough time getting into New Moon without some kind of press pass.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 10, 2009 5:59 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Mortensen Open to Role in The Hobbit

Viggo Mortensen mentioned the possibility of appearing in the Peter Jackson/Guillermo del Toro production of J.R.R. Tolkein's The Hobbit while accepting the Jameson Empire Icon Award Monday night in London:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 31, 2009 6:40 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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