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Thompson on Hollywood

Cowboys & Aliens Early Review Roundup: Favreau, Writers Talk Genre Clash

Cowboys & Aliens Early Review Roundup: Favreau, Writers Talk Genre Clash
In the days leading up to the Cowboys & Aliens world premiere July 23 at Comic-Con in San Diego, director Jon Favreau was anxious. He was telling anyone who would listen just how brave this mash-up of the sci-fi and western genres really is. In his Thursday Q & A with Guillermo Del Toro in Hall H, Favreau said, "Everyone agrees it's either going to be terrible or awesome... This movie was not the safe move. I was in a position to do something different. As movie budgets get higher they all become the same. If you take risks, when it pays off it's wonderful. If you can take failure it's ok." Favreau also refused to make the movie in 3-D, thankfully.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 27, 2011 6:29 AM
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  • 4 Comments

EW Cover Sells When Bond Met Indy, Not Cowboys & Aliens

"When Bond Met Indy" is a headline to woo any fan of movies, Hollywood icons, or handsome men. That's what EW's cover story sells with a joint profile of Harrison Ford and Daniel Craig.
  • By Anne Thompson and Maggie Lange
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  • July 21, 2011 7:20 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Favreau Teases Stories from Cowboys & Aliens Producers Spielberg, Howard and Grazer

Cowboys & Aliens director Jon Favreau interviews his producers, Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard and Brian Grazer. Below, Spielberg recalls meeting John Ford. Here are more videos of the conversation.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • July 8, 2011 1:15 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Long-Running Ron Meyer Wins Universal Game of Survivor; More Changes in Store?

As I predicted, Ron Meyer has won the NBC Universal game of survival. The wily ex-CAA partner has successfully run Universal Pictures as president and COO through three owners over 16 years. While former NBC Universal president and CEO Jeff Zucker is gone, Meyer remains. Hollywood's longest-running studio chief has signed a new contract to continue as President and Chief Operating Officer, Universal Studios. He will remain with the company at least through through 2015 and he will continue to report to Comcast CEO Steve Burke. He joined Universal in August 1995.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 27, 2011 9:00 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Jon Favreau Talks Genre-Mash Cowboys & Aliens: The Science of Sincerity

In an interview with TOH's Anthony D'Alessandro last week at the National Italian American Federation Gala, where Jon Favreau was lauded with the org’s Special Entertainment Achievement Award, the actor-director gave up some nuggets of intel on his upcoming summer genre-mash Cowboys & Aliens, starring Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford.Kitschy high-concept vehicles can be a turnoff on their title alone. Before moviegoers even approached the ticket booth, they could smell the stench of the ridiculous in polyester pics such as 1996’s Mars Attacks! ($37.8 million), 2006’s Snakes on a Plane ($34 million) or 2007’s Grindhouse ($25 million) – all of which crashed at the domestic B.O., despite having credible talent attached. However, with Cowboys & Aliens, Favreau and Universal are hoping to best such Z-movie stigma by selling the summer tentpole as a straight-up, serious X-Files western, evident in the first trailer (see below) they released back in November.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • May 27, 2011 12:18 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Robert Downey, Jr. Lands American Cinematheque Award: Should Be Fun Fete

Congratulations to Robert Downey, Jr. The 25th American Cinematheque Award will be his. Downey Jr. will be honored at the annual benefit gala on October 14 at the Beverly Hilton. This event could be one of the more entertaining of these award shows, as Downey will lure some of the funniest talent in town to pay him tribute, as Matt Damon did last year: his was more of a roast. Ben Stiller, Jon Favreau, Jaime Foxx, Jude Law, Zach Galifianakis, Steve Coogan, Jeremy Renner, and recent award-winner Samuel Jackson come to mind. Any other likely cronies?
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • May 5, 2011 4:26 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Summer Preview: Must-Sees on Big Screen, Skippable, Must-to-Avoid

Summer Preview: Must-Sees on Big Screen, Skippable, Must-to-Avoid
The summer is upon us, with a plethora of viewing choices, many of them utterly avoidable. I lay out the summer movie landscape.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • April 28, 2011 9:46 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Super Bowl Ads: Favreau is Cutting Spot for Cowboys and Aliens

Cowboys and Aliens will be one of the upcoming 2011 movies with a Super Bowl TV spot, confirms director Jon Favreau on Twitter (this is his Twitter avatar):
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 12, 2011 7:33 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Disney and Marvel Pay Paramount $115 Million to Buy Back Iron Man 3 and The Avengers

As expected, Disney Studios, under new chairman Rich Ross, and its subsidiary Marvel Entertainment (bought last year for $4 billion) had no intention of leaving so many of their prized titles behind at Paramount. But they had to pay dearly to get some of them back.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 18, 2010 8:00 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Summer Box Office Wrap: Winners and Losers, from Karate Kid to Cats and Dogs

In the final analysis the summer box office doesn't look so bad, writes TOH numbers cruncher Anthony D'Alessandro, who insists that weighing cost vs. return is more important than tallying the grosses or admissions.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • September 8, 2010 7:14 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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