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Thompson on Hollywood

Hollywood Mobilizes to Help Haiti

Besides George Clooney and Matt Damon's January 22 Haiti Aid Telethon, and Sean Penn arranging an emergency medical shipment to Haiti, many other members of the Hollywood community are stepping up to help the earthquake-ravaged island. On the eve of their annual Golden Globes Awards ceremony, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association have donated $100,000 to Wyclef Jean's Yele Haiti relief fund. Sandra Bullock, and Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's foundation, have committed $1 million in relief. And Artists for Peace and Justice is mounting a fundraising brunch this Sunday, reports writer-director Paul Haggis:Our board members have raised a significant amount of money in the past few days and we are hand delivering the funds to Port au Prince now. We have been told supplies are available in Haiti, they are just expensive; the banks are closed, so the hospitals that are still functioning, like the children's hospital we sponsor, St. Damien's -- the only free hospital serving the people of the slums of Port au Prince -- have run out of medicine and fuel for their generators. The emergency cash is a quick fix; we are also partnering with Operation USA and are flying in containers of medicine and supplies within the next few days. Anyone interested in donating can go to our website.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 16, 2010 1:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments

NBC Settling Conan Departure, Late Night Goes Wild

Finally, Conan O'Brien is close to settling with NBC, which (thanks apparently to Universal chief Ron Meyer) is not only paying the talk show host off, but letting him go work for someone else. Leno, who has been hammered relentlessly, along with NBC and NBC Universal chief Jeff Zucker, will stay.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 15, 2010 6:38 AM
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  • 12 Comments
More: News, TV

Tron Legacy Producer Sean Bailey Lands Disney Production Gig

Ben Affleck is a happy man.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 14, 2010 11:56 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Haiti Needs Hollywood's Support

Over coffee today with outgoing MPAA chairman Dan Glickman--who served as Agriculture Secretary in the Clinton administration and plans to return to public service on September 1 when he stops repping the Hollywood studios in Washington--he made clear how much devastated Haiti, which is just 300 miles away from the U.S., needs support from folks in Hollywood. "Our industry needs to step up," Glickman said. "Now [relief organizations] are focused on clean-up, medicine and food. Development work will be done later on."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 14, 2010 10:43 AM
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  • 1 Comment
More: Hollywood, News

Magnolia Buys Jordan's Ondine, Starring Farrell

Magnolia Buys Jordan's Ondine, Starring Farrell
Finally, months after its debut at the Toronto International Film Festival, Magnolia Pictures has landed U.S. rights to Neil Jordan’s Ondine, starring Colin Farrell in a rare performance in his native dialect. (The film scored eight nominations for the Irish Film and Television Awards.) According to Movieline's Stu VanAirsdale, the final cut of the Paramount Vantage leftover will be different from the one screened in Toronto:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 14, 2010 3:06 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Disney's Aviv Exits as Ross Relies on DreamWorks

It's deja vu all over again. A studio in management upheaval. A new studio head recruited from TV being directed to reinvent the wheel by a boss who is a film biz outsider.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 13, 2010 12:22 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Finke Poaches Variety Scoop-King Fleming

Finke Poaches Variety Scoop-King Fleming
As Variety hides behind a pay wall in a misguided attempt to salvage its outdated print model, Jay Penske-owned Deadline/Hollywood has poached Variety's biggest breaking news hound, Mike Fleming, to run the new Deadline/New York.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 11, 2010 4:31 AM
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  • 7 Comments
More: News, Media

Polanski Asks To Be Sentenced in Absentia

The LAT is reporting that director Roman Polanski has asked an L.A. judge to be sentenced in absentia in his 1977 sex case. This is according to a notarized letter submitted to a Superior Court judge during a hearing Wednesday afternoon:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 7, 2010 12:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
More: Directors, News

Bond 23 Update: Sam Mendes in Talks to Direct

When your career needs a boost and there are few available top-dollar jobs: take a franchise.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 5, 2010 11:20 AM
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  • 4 Comments

Leipzig Out at National Geographic; Battsek in Talks

After six years as president of National Geographic Films, Adam Leipzig is moving into an executive producer role on two films he was shepherding at the company, says David Beal, President, National Geographic Entertainment. The first is HBO's planned ten-hour Lewis & Clark mini-series Undaunted Courage, adapted by Michelle Ashford from the 1996 biography of Meriwether Lewis by Band of Brothers writer Stephen F. Ambrose. The film, set in the early 1800s, is also executive produced by Brad Pitt and Edward Norton. The second is writer-director Peter Weir's return to the screen, the World War II drama The Way Back, based on the memoir by Slavomir Rawicz, starring Colin Farrell, Ed Harris, Jim Sturgess and Saoirse Ronan, which is in post-production. It has no distributor.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 5, 2010 8:05 AM
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  • 2 Comments

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