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Thompson on Hollywood

Avatar Budget, Up in the Air Tweet Chart, Pattinson vs. Kidman, Finke Attacks, Indie Bloodbath Redux

James Cameron's Avatar did not cost $500 million. First of all, the thing was in R & D for years. The negative cost is $300 to 400 million, but no one knows for sure. If you add worldwide marketing to it, maybe it creeps up to $500 million, because it's a huge movie that Fox has already spent a lot to flog, with World Series spots, Avatar Day, Comic-Con and Tokyo Film Fest footage etc. Online folks went nuts over this Michael Cieply NYT story which threw out an "approaching $500 million" figure. Loved this response from @ColeAbaius: "Not what I heard. insider claims that AVATAR will end up at $29 Trillion. And it was actually shot in space."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 10, 2009 1:26 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Entertainment Weekly Slashes Staff

Entertainment Weekly lost eleven staffers Wednesday, including four editorial. My old Premiere colleague Christine Spines is out at the West Coast office. What's telling is that she specialized in writing features, something the magazine isn't interested in running anymore, as their stories get shorter and shorter and they waste their best writers on chasing celeb news online. It's rare to see a feature longer than 1800 words; more are in the 800-word range.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 5, 2009 1:53 AM
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  • 7 Comments
More: Media

Twilight's Pattinson Covers Vanity Fair

Twilight's Pattinson Covers Vanity Fair
I never do junkets. But at Comic-Con a year ago last July, the place went nuts over Twilight star Rob Pattinson. So last November, I knew I had to interview the young Brit actor with my flip cam. Summit gave me a one-on-one with him at the Four Seasons.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 3, 2009 8:56 AM
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  • 8 Comments

Bloggers Disclosure Rules Redux

J. Sperling Reich of Showbiz Sandbox interviewed critic James Rocchi, journo Michael Giltz and me about the controversy surrounding the FTC blogger disclosure rules. The topic of junkets got quite heated. Here's the post that ignited quite a reaction on this blog.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 25, 2009 3:37 AM
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  • 1 Comment
More: Media

Journalism in 3-D: Is Content Dead?

"If content is not king," asked Variety publisher Neil Stiles at a downbeat Digital Hollywood journalism panel Wednesday, "what is?"
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 22, 2009 1:33 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Four Ways to Build a New Open Infrastructure

Digital pioneer Lance Weiler joins the fray with a modest proposal for how the film industry should embrace innovation as it faces the digital future:
  • By Lance Weiler
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  • October 9, 2009 3:42 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Full Disclosure: Bloggers Break Rules

Full Disclosure: Bloggers Break Rules
James Rocchi is the contemporary model of online era film critic.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 7, 2009 7:10 AM
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  • 61 Comments

New Yorker Goes Friendly on Finke

I met with New Yorker writer Tad Friend when he came out to L.A. last July. We talked at Caffe Latte, ostensibly about the Hollywood blogosphere, but it quickly became clear that Nikki Finke was the irresistible subject at hand. No question, she's compelling. Always.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 4, 2009 7:15 AM
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  • 3 Comments
More: Media

Polanski Redux: Who Lied?

As the Roman Polanski imbroglio continues to unfold in various quarters, I am fascinated by the swirling reactions to his legal situation.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 30, 2009 11:53 AM
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  • 19 Comments

Variety Makes Changes

Variety is undergoing some major changes. Some are a factor of the venerable trade paper's adjustment to the challenging advertising economy. In the past year, the company has trimmed down in size over several rounds of layoffs which saw the departures of not only me but hard-driving daily editors Michael Speier and Kathy Lyford. Both were well-paid, high-level execs with years of newsroom experience. Speier moved briefly to The Wrap (which also picked up ex-Variety TV editor Joseph Adalian) but Speier is leaving in order to run internal publications at Disney.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 23, 2009 11:02 AM
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  • 6 Comments
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