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Thompson on Hollywood

Niche Doc On-Demand Release Targets Batman Fans (VIDEO)

Documentaries lend themselves to targeted niche marketing and, as "Detropia" proved last year, self-distribution. All you need is a subject with a defined fan base. Funded by more than 1,000 Kickstarter donors, Brett Culp's "Legends of the Knight" is a case in point. Relying on community support with each screening benefiting a local charity, the movie has been pulling in Batman fans across the country.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 13, 2014 12:15 PM
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Anatomy of a Release: Roadside Attractions' Redford-Starrer 'All Is Lost'

Did Roadside Attractions do anything wrong in distributing "All is Lost," as Robert Redford has suggested? Compare Roadside's overall release plan to similar English-language limited-release films and the company did about as well as it realistically could have.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 18, 2014 12:32 PM
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  • 16 Comments

AFI FEST Promotes One of Last Holiday Entries Via Special Tribute to David O. Russell

Given that David O. Russell's "American Hustle" (December 25) is one of the last films to arrive into the already-crowded awards fray, the last film festival of the fall season, AFI FEST 2013 (November 7-14), gets to promote the presumed Oscar contender via Special Tribute on Friday, November 8.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 1, 2013 1:10 PM
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Nifty 'Carrie' Promo Stunt (VIDEO)

They dumped red slushies on the Homecoming Queen in "Glee," referencing "Carrie," the Stephen King classic and Brian de Palma movie, which has now been remade by Kimberly Peirce with Chloe Grace Moretz in the Sissy Spacek role and Julianne Moore in for Piper Laurie. Check out this cleverly viral way to market the latest flick about an angry teenager with telekinetic powers:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 8, 2013 7:27 PM
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Dwight Caines Moves Into Sony's Top Marketing Spot

More and more, executives who know the digital universe are moving up the studio ranks. See Kevin Tsujihara at Warners and Amy Powell at Paramount, and now Dwight Caines at Sony. He replaces respected outgoing marketing president Marc Weinstock, who was himself a rising star when he moved to the studio marketing department after boosting many hits at Sony subsidiary Screen Gems. Did the studio's movies really disappoint because of lackluster marketing? I don't think so. But when a studio management team is under fire for a weak slate, they often blame the marketing chief.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 25, 2013 1:11 PM
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  • 1 Comment

TIFF: 'Rush' Director Ron Howard, Star Chris Hemsworth and Hans Zimmer Do Facebook Q & As

As part of Universal's Toronto International Film Festival press junket for Ron Howard's Formula 1 racing flick "Rush" (September 20), this Sunday at noon before the film's world premiere, Howard and star Chris Hemsworth will conduct their first ever Facebook Q&A. They'll also answer fan questions on the "Rush" Facebook Page.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 6, 2013 11:47 PM
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  • 2 Comments

'The Butler' Close to 'The Help''s Opening Numbers; Holdovers 'We're the Millers' and 'Elysium' Beat Other Newcomers

"Lee Daniels' The Butler" delivered as a major number one success for The Weinstein Co., exceeding most predictions. But the overall weekend marked another summer disappointment. Three of this week's four openers fell from their Friday starts, showing bad word of mouth and lack of interest. "Kick-Ass 2" was supposed to compete for number one with "The Butler," but underperformed relative to expectations. "Jobs" and especially "Paranoia" (which didn't even make the top 10) were real bellyflops. The second weekend for both "We're the Millers" and "Elysium" outgrossed all newbies except for "The Butler."
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • August 18, 2013 1:36 PM
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Marlon Brando Stays Honest, Flirts, Dissembles, Speaks French in String of 1965 Press Interviews (VIDEO)

Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. A great actor strives to remain authentic under the most trying circumstances. Check out this series of press interviews with Brando--he admitted to promoting "Morituri," a movie most of his interlocuters had not yet seen, and his interviewers seemed to be trying to hawk it too--much to his dismay.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 1, 2013 3:46 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Former Fox PR Chief Bumble Ward Establishes Hive Communication Collective Focused on Social Media and Philanthropy

LA-based film and social media maven Bumble Ward, who in October 2012 left her post as publicity EVP at Twentieth Century Fox, has co-founded a new social strategy hub for art and philanthropy, Hive Communication Collective.
  • By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio
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  • June 27, 2013 2:58 PM
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More: Marketing

Exclusive: Check Out the Striking New Poster for Upcoming HBO Doc 'The Out List'

As a portraitist, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders has moved fluidly between the worlds of photography and documentary: his work is on display at The Museum of Modern Art and The National Portrait Gallery, and he's produced and directed eight films, nearly all of them in collaboration with HBO. His newest film, "The Out List," which will debut on HBO later this June, examines lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender life in the United States--and the timing really couldn't be any better.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 11, 2013 9:41 PM
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  • 0 Comments
More: Marketing

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