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Thompson on Hollywood

Oscar Watch: Academy Hires Producers, NYT Recasts Carpetbagger

Oscar Watch: Academy Hires Producers, NYT Recasts Carpetbagger
Now that the Academy has announced a team of Oscarcast producers, director Adam Shankman and ex-Fox studio chief-turned-producer Bill Mechanic, the business of choosing a host can begin.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 20, 2009 10:38 AM
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  • 4 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

Industry Gives Hollywood Film Festival Free Pass

Industry Gives Hollywood Film Festival Free Pass
I am surprised by the film industry and the media's continued willingness to give a free pass to entrepreneur Carlos de Abreu's Hollywood Film Festival, a cannily constructed facade which honors stars, filmmakers and craftspeople and lines the pockets of de Abreu.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 19, 2009 12:31 PM
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  • 7 Comments

Indie Spirits Move Their Awards Show

The biggest story out of the recent New York Film Festival had nothing to do with the movies shown at that 17-day fest. No, the subject of heated discussion wasn't the opening night selection Wild Grass or Lars von Trier's Antichrist: it was the change of venue of the opening night party. The indie world did not convene on Tavern on the Green as it had for more than thirty years. In a budget-cutting move, new Film Society of Lincoln Center chief Mara Manus saved $150,000 by cutting back the list and throwing a more intimate party at the new Alice Tully Hall.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 19, 2009 5:35 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Awards Season Kicks Off with Gotham Noms: Hurt Locker Gets Boost

Each successive round of awards announcements is about whether a movie gets a boost or not. It's not terrible to be left out of the Gotham Independent Film Award nominations. It's more about getting a slight boost as you build toward the inevitable momentum that accrues to the eventual real contenders for the Golden Globes, Indie Spirits or the Oscars. It gets harder, as time goes on, to grab attention in order to coax critics and Academy voters to watch your film. Otherwise you wind up on the bottom of a growing DVD pile.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 19, 2009 5:24 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Oscar Watch: Academy's Davis Talks Producers and Hosts

Oscar Watch: Academy's Davis Talks Producers and Hosts
Picking a producer for the Oscar telecast is the first big project facing any incoming Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences president like Tom Sherak. But the process can't start before he's elected. And the new president is still learning the ropes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 17, 2009 8:28 AM
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  • 14 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

The Messenger: Oscar Contender?

The Messenger: Oscar Contender?
Rookie director Oren Moverman's The Messenger faces the same obstacle in the fall awards season as the Michelle Monaghan star vehicle Trucker. It's one of many marginal outsider films that has to get seen before it has a chance. The movie is a stark portrait of two soldiers (Woody Harrelson and Ben Foster) who have to deliver news to families that their loved ones have died in Iraq. Not only do they have to handle their assignment delicately, but they must also absorb the shock, pain and grief of the bereaved.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 17, 2009 8:10 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Trailer Watch: Will Amelia Biopic Play?

Trailer Watch: Will Amelia Biopic Play?
I'll be showing Mira Nair's Amelia at Sneak Previews this week. I've seen the biopic of the vanished aviatrix Amelia Earhart, which stars Oscar magnet Hilary Swank and Richard Gere, and look forward to grilling the screenwriters, Ron Bass (Rain Man) and Anna Hamilton Phelan (Gorillas in the Mist). The question at hand: how do you tackle a movie biography these days, when authenticity is at such a premium?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 17, 2009 6:33 AM
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  • 11 Comments

Oscar Talk Episode 6

Oscar Talk Episode 6
In our sixth Oscar Talk podcast, In Contention's Kris Tapley and I debate the foreign and animation races, The Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Messenger, Where the Wild Things Are and The Last Station.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 16, 2009 10:49 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Oscar Picks of 65 Films Submitted for Foreign Film Contention

Oscar Picks of 65 Films Submitted for Foreign Film Contention
65 countries are competing for the 2009 foreign language film Oscar. The Academy has released the official list, which is on the jump.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 15, 2009 5:08 AM
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  • 4 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

Oscar Sees Double

Oscar Sees Double
There are two Oscar universes: fantasy and reality.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • October 13, 2009 9:31 AM
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  • 14 Comments
More: Awards, Oscars

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