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Thompson on Hollywood

Crafts Roundup: Talking VFX with the Five Oscar Nominees

The "Gravity" juggernaut, the surprising entry of "The Lone Ranger," the new and improved "Iron Man 3," the ascendance of "Star Trek Into Darkness" and the J.J. Abrams factor, and the power of the eponymous dragon from "The Desolation of Smaug." We reflect on the great year for VFX with the lead supervisors of all five Oscar nominees.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 30, 2014 2:05 PM
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'Fast & Furious 6' Revs Up Holiday Weekend Box Office, 'Before Midnight' Starts Strong

After months of grosses that often fell short of last year, Friday's results indicate a huge uptick in business just as the summer season revs into high gear. With three new films joining three May hits, the top 10 yesterday grossed around $84 million, nearly double the Friday of Memorial Day weekend last year ($44 million).
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 25, 2013 3:25 PM
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Weekend Box Office Top Ten Is Strong, Led By 'Star Trek Into Darkness,' Which Pulls In Smaller Audience than Last Film

At long last, for the first time this year the box office top ten marked a bump up from last year, thanks to three big performers taking in most of the gross. The top 10 this weekend came to about $158 million. Last year, which saw two disappointing openings ("Battleship" and "The Dictator" followed weak "Dark Shadows"), came to $134 million. "Star Trek Into Darkness" leads the way--while nonetheless failing to meet high expectations--and "Iron Man 3" and "The Great Gatsby" continue to draw audiences. This is an important achievement after a weak 2013 so far.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 19, 2013 1:03 PM
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Eastward Ho! How Marvel's 'Iron Man 3' Met China UPDATE

UPDATE: As new "Iron Man 3" scenes were added for specifically Chinese audiences upon the boffo film's release, the re-release of Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained," featuring three minutes cut from the original (including nudity scenes), is flopping in China. The film originally hit Chinese theaters April 11, and was pulled within "minutes of its opening screenings... without official explanation," per Deadline.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • May 13, 2013 12:48 PM
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Weekend Box Office Top Ten: 'Great Gatsby' Scores Strong Second Place Showing Behind Top Draw 'Iron Man 3'

Two films with grosses over $50 million in one weekend -- the first of a string of highly anticipated studio summer releases -- returns the box office to normal. "Iron Man 3" held onto the #1 spot, with the expected second weekend falloff for a huge opening, but still strong. And "The Great Gatsby" had a stellar start despite mixed reviews and concern about its earnings potential.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 12, 2013 12:58 PM
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'Great Gatsby' Surprises to Open Just Behind 'Iron Man 3'

In one of the biggest box office surprises in recent months, Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby" exceeded pre-opening estimates and overcame mixed reviews to gross over $19.4 million on Friday (including Thursday night late shows), nearly equaling the more than $19.7 million that "Iron Man 3" took in for the day.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 11, 2013 1:42 PM
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'Iron Man 3' Director Shane Black Set to Direct Comic Book Adaptation 'Doc Savage'

'Iron Man 3' writer/director Shane Black has a new project in the works. He has just closed a deal with Sony to direct "Doc Savage." Black co-wrote the screenplay with Anthony Bagarozzi and Charles Mondry based on the hero of pulp novels, films and comic books who first appeared in 1933.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • May 8, 2013 1:13 PM
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'Iron Man 3' Crushes Weekend Competition, But Can't Save Box Office: 'Pain & Gain' Plummets

Disney and Marvel are chortling with glee at the massive global success of "The Iron Man 3," finally adding late arrival North America to its huge foreign openings. The domestic numbers rank a bit below what "The Avengers" did one year ago, but overtaking that number was a tall order. Even so, $175 million for the weekend is at the high end of expectations, with the best news coming from Saturday's modest drop from the initial number.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 5, 2013 12:44 PM
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'Iron Man 3' Adds U.S. to Its Huge Take

Disney/Marvel's "Iron Man 3" added the U.S. and Canada as the last major territories to open Thursday night, amassing a $68,312,000 total through Friday to end up as the #8 best (in unadjusted figures) opening gross ever. More relevantly, that strong number was about $12 million less than last year's phenomenally successful "The Avengers," also aided by 3-D and IMAX surcharges, which was also already playing in most of the rest of the world.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • May 4, 2013 3:52 PM
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Immersed in Movies: Shane Black and Kevin Feige Talk Going Over the Edge in 'Iron Man 3,' Stark's Demons, VFX

With "Iron Man 3" already smashing box-office records internationally ahead of its domestic release Friday, grabbing more than $300 million in nine days (including the highest opening ever in China), Marvel's post-"Avengers" Phase 2 plan is off to a smashing start. The trick apparently was giving Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark an existential crisis, and no one was better suited to the task than director Shane Black, who, like Downey, knows a thing or two about confronting personal demons, which is what "Iron Man 3" is all about.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • May 3, 2013 2:35 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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