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Thompson on Hollywood

Lisa Cholodenko Is Guest Director of the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival

The 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival (LAFF) has revealed that filmmaker Lisa Cholodenko ("The Kids Are All Right") will serve as artistic guest director for the upcoming edition of the fest.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • April 8, 2014 2:34 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Calling All Filmmakers: Film Independent's Project Involve Now Open for Submissions

Listen up, filmmakers. Film Independent's signature diversity program Project Involve is now open for submissions. The deadline is April 28. Here's what you need to apply.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • April 7, 2014 2:51 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'Snowpiercer' to Open the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival

The 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival will open with Bong Joon-ho’s “Snowpiercer” on June 11.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • April 1, 2014 2:13 PM
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Review: Oscar Nominated 'Ernest & Celestine' a Gentle and Delightfully Weird Animated Treat

Taboo friendship is one of the many resonant themes in the sweetly strange and delicately animated “Ernest & Celestine,” which is up for the Best Animated Feature Oscar.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • February 24, 2014 2:49 PM
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  • 3 Comments

LA Film Festival Reveals 20th Anniversary Poster by Artist Ed Ruscha

The Los Angeles Film Festival (June 11-19) has unveiled a new poster by contemporary artist Ed Ruscha to commemorate the fest's 20th edition kicking off this summer.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • February 18, 2014 3:57 PM
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Talking 'Wadjda' Firsts: Film Shot Entirely in Saudia Arabia, and By a Woman (TRAILER)

When Haifaa Al Mansour made a short film several years ago with her brother and sister, and it was accepted at a regional film competition in Abu Dhabi, she didn't know she was taking on the title of Saudi Arabia’s first woman filmmaker. In the fall of 2012, she went to the Venice International Film Festival with "Wadjda," the first feature film to be made by a Saudi woman, and the first to be shot entirely inside the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It recently scored an Indie Spirit nomination for Best First Feature.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • September 9, 2013 12:04 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Review: Lake Bell's 'In a World' a Hilarious Feminist Comedy About the Power of Voice

What’s in a voice? Power, for one thing. The power to tell people things -- anything from an update on a global crisis to the general gist of a young adult movie franchise. This idea is at the center of Lake Bell’s hilarious, sincere and boldly feminist comedy “In a World,” which she wrote, directed and stars in. The film recently scored an Indie Spirit nomination for Best First Screenplay.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • August 6, 2013 11:46 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Review: Tragi-Comedy 'Act of Killing' Confronts the Killer Inside (TRAILER)

With his documentary "The Act of Killing," Joshua Oppenheimer has reset the bar for tragi-comedy. As in, don’t even bother trying, Hollywood. Ever again. In fact, why don’t we just dispense with next year’s Oscar race right now and give both the best documentary and the best feature award to this film? It even has a musical within it, so it could take that category at the Globes, too.
  • By Tom Christie
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  • July 18, 2013 1:48 PM
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  • 1 Comment

'Venus Vs.' Review: Venus Williams Fights for Gender Equality at Wimbledon in Ava DuVernay's Rousing Sports Doc

Ava DuVernay’s skilled documentary “Venus Vs.,” which debuts on ESPN July 2, charts Venus Williams’ two-year battle from 2005 to 2007 for equal prize money among genders at Wimbledon. In the film, sports journalist Howard Bryant explains that it takes a certain collision of factors for someone to be the right and most effective person to champion a cause. In 1973, it was Billie Jean King. In this millennium it’s Williams, a superstar in the world of tennis who also understands acutely what it is to be an outsider in that sport -- racially, economically and in terms of gender.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • July 2, 2013 11:42 AM
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  • 3 Comments

LAFF Winners: 'Mother, I Love You,' 'Code Black' Win Jury Awards; Audience Awards Go to 'Short Term 12,' 'Wadjda,' 'American Revolutionary'

The DIRECTV Narrative Award for the finest narrative film in competition at the Los Angeles Festival went to Janis Nords’ "Mother, I Love You," making its U.S. premiere, and The DIRECTV Documentary Award for the finest documentary film in competition at the Festival went to Ryan McGarry for world premiere "Code Black." Destin Daniel Cretton’s drama "Short Term 12" (Cinedigm, August 23), Grace Lee’s documentary "American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs" and Haifaa Al Mansour’s Saudi Arabian drama "Wadjda" (Sony Pictures Classics, September 13) won the audience awards.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 23, 2013 4:22 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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