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Thompson on Hollywood

Academy's Rise of Non-Fiction Film: Golden Age of Documentary, Embracing Distractions, Oprah Wrong

Beth Hanna reports back on the Academy's "Rise of Non-Fiction Movies" panel, considers the Golden Age of focumentary film, embracing the distractions, and why Oprah gets it wrong:
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • October 27, 2011 7:20 AM
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Steve Jobs: The Story of His Adoption, Search for His Biological Parents, Sister Mona Simpson

Steve Jobs: The Story of His Adoption, Search for His Biological Parents, Sister Mona Simpson
The person who invited me, back in my Premiere days, to have lunch with Steve Jobs, was press agent Harry Clein, who was doing some PR work for Pixar. He recounts what it was like to work for the demanding executive.Steve Jobs hired my firm to work with Pixar right after Toy Story became a big hit. Disney was taking all the credit for its success and he wanted people to know that Pixar had not just been the technical end of Toy Story but also the creative source.
  • By Harry Clein
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  • October 9, 2011 4:23 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Wish I Was There: MoMA's “Carte Blanche: Dieter Kosslick, the Culinary Cineaste”

Wish I Was There: MoMA's “Carte Blanche: Dieter Kosslick, the Culinary Cineaste”
Hungry? You will be after reading Bay Area restaurant critic Meredith Brody's words on MoMA'a food and film series, “Carte Blanche: Dieter Kosslick, the Culinary Cineaste”:In a recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle, Alice Waters said, ”I can’t live without films. They’re like food to me. I need them both.”
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • August 22, 2011 3:48 AM
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Superman Faceoff: Bryan Singer vs. Brandon Routh

As the latest Superman reboot gets underway, two folks who have no say in the Chris Nolan/Zack Snyder version, Superman Returns director Byran Singer and star Brandon Routh, face off against each other, Jeanne Wolf reports: When Bryan Singer makes a public statement that sounds like he was sorry he picked Brandon Routh to be Superman in the 2006 Superman Returns, you’d think that the former superhero’s feelings would be wounded.
  • By Jeanne Wolf
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  • April 22, 2011 8:07 AM
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  • 0 Comments

When Elizabeth Taylor Met Tiny Tim

After the death of Elizabeth Taylor, press agent Harry Clein dug up his 1968 interview with Tiny Tim, in which the ukelele-playing actor (who was always a tad strange) recalls his early fan crush on the actress and how he met her when they were both teenagers. In 1968, I was working as a journalist. One of my first interviews was with Tiny Tim. Mr. Tiny, as he liked to be called, was then 36, looked like a genial Halloween witch, and was at the beginning of his “Tiptoe Through the Tulips" fame. He strummed his ukulele to accompany his riffs on his newfound success, his music, Rudy Vallee and Bob Dylan, his growing up in the tenements of New York, s-e-x – he never said the word but spelled it – and his many celebrity crushes.
  • By Harry Clein
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  • March 28, 2011 6:15 AM
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Taxi Driver, New York

Starting this Friday, New York City’s Film Forum will screen a newly restored 35mm print of Taxi Driver. Simon Abrams reports on the restoration and takes a look at Martin Scorsese's New York, then and now. Martin Scorsese’s seminal film was restored by Sony Pictures and The Film Foundation, an organization dedicated to film preservation that Scorsese is actively involved in. Now 35 years old, Taxi Driver looks more and more like an expressive time capsule of pre-Giuiliani Manhattan. The most salient sign of the changing times is the fact that the Lyric Theater, the porn house where Travis Bickle (Robert DeNiro) takes his date to see Swedish skin flick The Swedish Marriage Manual, is now the Foxwoods Theater, the Broadway auditorium where Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark is playing. Like the Lyric Theater, many of the film's more unsavory locations are gone, replaced by more upscale, tourist-friendly attractions.
  • By Simon Abrams
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  • March 18, 2011 12:53 PM
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  • 4 Comments

How Ryan Kavanaugh Can Save the Movies

How Ryan Kavanaugh Can Save the Movies
Indie producer Cotty Chubb has a modest proposal for Relativity chief Ryan Kavanaugh that could save the movies. (Chubb wants the studios to be involved, which may be part of the problem.)The movie business is being strangled. For a professionally produced picture to succeed, it must be released theatrically. But not every movie is fit for 3,000 screens or appropriate only to educated adults, the twin poles of distribution today. And there is almost no middle ground.
  • By Cotty Chubb
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  • December 23, 2010 9:25 AM
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  • 27 Comments

Mad Men's Jaw-Dropping Season Four Finale: "A pretty girl walks by and everything's out the window."

Tim Appelo recaps Mad Men's Season Four finale (packed with Spoilers, needless to say). I am not the only one drooping with disappointment that my fave series is going into hiatus. Sigh. “A secretary is not a pet, nor an erector set,” they sang in the 1961 Robert Morse musical How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying -- but try telling that to Don Draper. In Mad Men’s jawdropper fourth-season finale, he drop-kicks his brilliant, drop-dead gorgeous girlfriend Dr. Faye Miller and pops the question to his secretary du jour, Megan –better known as “Who the hell is that?” (as Roger Sterling blurted when Don announced the engagement). Draper secretaries come and go like Spinal Tap drummers, but Megan turned a one-night stand into a giant diamond.
  • By Tim Appelo
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  • October 20, 2010 6:50 AM
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Sorkin Talks The Social Network at Harvard Q & A

Sorkin Talks The Social Network at Harvard Q & A
Sony is marketing the hell out of The Social Network which opens the New York Film Festival Friday night (with Harvard Club after party) and opens wide on October 1. (The NYT offers a rave; author Ben Mezrich talks to LAT, Zuckerberg talks to the NYorker.) They're also hitting the college demo hard, staging screenings in Austin, Texas, which boasts a student population of some 50,000, and at Harvard, natch, where TOH guest blogger L.M. Kit Carson saw the film and reported on the Q & A with writer Aaron Sorkin:
  • By L.M. Kit Carson
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  • September 23, 2010 4:30 AM
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TIFF Diary: Remembering Chabrol, Potiche, I Saw The Devil, Monsters, Brighton Rock

TIFF Diary: Remembering Chabrol, Potiche, I Saw The Devil, Monsters, Brighton Rock
In her ongoing Toronto journal, day five, Meredith Brody starts off remembering Claude Chabrol:So I realized trudging home from the subway last night that the reason I hadn’t remembered that the Toronto subway doesn’t begin running until 9 a.m. on Sunday was that I never had been obliged to use the subway on the way to an early-morning screening before.
  • By Meredith Brody
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  • September 16, 2010 5:53 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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