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Thompson on Hollywood

Zombieland Builds Buzz: Five Clips

Zombieland Builds Buzz: Five Clips
Austin's Fantastic Fest is under way. The movie to fly out of there with the greatest buzz (besides Toy Story 3, which debuted a trailer) is Zombieland. Will this R-rated zombie parody starring Jesse Eisenberg and Woody Harrelson break the horror comedy curse?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 27, 2009 5:39 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Bad B.O. Weekend: Surrogates, Fame Flop, Capitalism Scores

It was a nasty weekend for studio openers. Disney's $80-million robot thriller Surrogates, starring Bruce Willis, flopped with an estimated $15-million opening; MGM's sagging fortunes were not buttressed by the ill-conceived $18-million teen musical remake Fame, the only movie they've opened in months. They marketed the hell out of it. They just missed the mark with audiences.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 27, 2009 5:07 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Weekend Box Office: Jennifer's Body Horror Tweener

As predicted, Jennifer's Body opened soft at the boxoffice. Fox marketed a horror movie aimed at men, who like Megan Fox. Twentieth Century Fox hung the marketing on the Transformers star, but girls don't want to see her. The studio failed to get women to watch Karyn Kusama and Diablo Cody's angry feminist movie. Thus Jennifer's Body is a classic tweener: neither a horror thriller for men, nor a coming-of-age horror-comedy for women. (It didn't earn strong reviews.) If Searchlight had marketed it, they might have been able to target the right smart crowd. (At a low-end cost of $16 million, the movie should come out ahead in any case.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 19, 2009 9:03 AM
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  • 11 Comments

Toronto Day One: Creation, The Informant!, Jennifer's Body

Toronto Day One: Creation, The Informant!, Jennifer's Body
The reason why film festivals pick movies like Creation for opening night is that they have all the right credentials: respected producer (Jeremy Thomas) and director (Jon Amiel) and two major stars (Paul Bettany and Jennifer Connelly) willing to show up for the gala TIFF screenings and party. But Creation was DOA tonight.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 11, 2009 1:38 AM
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  • 8 Comments

The Road Will Open November 25

The Road Will Open November 25
The Weinstein Co. has been moving around the release date of The Road, trying to figure out what it has. Well, post-Venice and Telluride, where the film earned mostly glowing reviews, it looks like Harvey and Bob Weinstein are going for a holiday play after all on a prime awards season spot, November 25. (The movie carries the Dimension label.) TWC was going to go wide with the movie on October 16.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 9, 2009 9:36 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Stringray Sam: Coming Soon to Screens of All Sizes

Just as several folks steered me to check out Stingray Sam, the episodic six-part serial musical space-western designed for mobile phones that debuted at Sundance 2009, writer-director-musician Cory McAbee, one of many filmmakers these days taking distribution into their own hands, posted the following:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 3, 2009 4:38 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Awards buzz, Indie News, Disney Confab

In Indie news, despite Inglourious Basterds' rousing start, the Weinsteins aren't out of the woods. They weren't taking any chances. They upped their media spend by several millions in the week before the opening, targeting their weakest link, women. It worked. The WSJ explains why the Weinsteins face a long road ahead.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 25, 2009 4:00 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Avatar Trailer Update

The response to the Avatar teaser trailer that Fox released Thursday was mixed.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 20, 2009 10:14 AM
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  • 8 Comments

Avatar Week: Photo Gallery

I'm obsessed with Avatar. (The movies of James Cameron are moving inexorably up my flickchart.) The question for me is whether Cameron's ambitious mix of 3-D live-action and performance capture --which cost Fox way more than $200 million-- breaks out beyond the Comic-Con faithful. It feels very sci-fi thriller, which is fine for District 9. But Cameron knows how to reach a wide audience. Avatar is also a romance set on the exotic planet Pandora.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 20, 2009 2:12 AM
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  • 8 Comments

Portfolio Returns, Hughes' Death Place, Celebs Shill on Facebook

Movieline writer Stu Van Airsdale tracked down the site where John Hughes left this mortal coil.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • August 14, 2009 6:10 AM
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  • 4 Comments

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