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Thompson on Hollywood

Robert Downey, Jr. Lands American Cinematheque Award: Should Be Fun Fete

Congratulations to Robert Downey, Jr. The 25th American Cinematheque Award will be his. Downey Jr. will be honored at the annual benefit gala on October 14 at the Beverly Hilton. This event could be one of the more entertaining of these award shows, as Downey will lure some of the funniest talent in town to pay him tribute, as Matt Damon did last year: his was more of a roast. Ben Stiller, Jon Favreau, Jaime Foxx, Jude Law, Zach Galifianakis, Steve Coogan, Jeremy Renner, and recent award-winner Samuel Jackson come to mind. Any other likely cronies?
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • May 5, 2011 4:26 AM
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MTV Movie Awards Nominates Twilight and Harry Potter Stars, Emma Stone, Jesse Eisenberg, Portman

MTV Movie Awards Nominates Twilight and Harry Potter Stars, Emma Stone, Jesse Eisenberg, Portman
On June 5, Jason Sudeikis will host the MTV Movie Awards, the show guaranteed to recognize the power of celebrity and shrieking teenage girls. EW reports the nominees for Best Female and Male performance, from Oscar-winner Natalie Portman (Black Swan) to Jennifer Aniston (Just Go With It) and Jessie Eisenberg (The Social Network) to Zac Efron (Charlie St. Cloud). Yes, really. The nominees for Best Line from a Movie are also announced, and listed below:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • May 3, 2011 4:47 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Harry Potter Producer David Heyman Talks Deathly Hallows, Tentpoles, Gravity

As the seventh and penultimate Harry Potter installment was breaking records for the series, producer David Heyman reflected on producing the mighty franchise. He talked to Anthony D'Alessandro:Most producers can only dream about churning out $24 million from 3,700 midnight showings or $61.15 million in one day.  But that’s what Harry Potter producer David Heyman experiences every time he opens a new chapter in the $5.48 billion Harry Potter franchise: Breaking a new record.  The opening day for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 set a record for the series, ranking the fifth best first day bow among all films. Once an indie producer on such offbeat Parker Posey comedies as 1996’s The Daytrippers, which launched director Greg Mottola (Superbad), Heyman’s producing career took a 180 when he optioned an unpublished manuscript by author J.K. Rowling.  On Hallows opening day, he took time out to give us some insight on how the Harry Potter franchise has impacted his career and the film industry. 
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • November 23, 2010 3:26 AM
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Weekend Box Office: Animated "Megamind" Outsmarts R-rated Comedy "Due Date"

Marking a possible record-setting weekend at the box office, animated comedy Megamind lead a robust pack including raunchy comedy Due Date and yet another Tyler Perry hit, For Colored Girls, reports Anthony D'Alessandro. Among indie openers, Danny Boyle's 127 Hours soared in its limited debut.
  • By Anthony D'Alessandro
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  • November 7, 2010 5:07 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Casting Watch: Great Muppet Movie, Great Oz Plot, Solondz Adds Walken, Farrow, Blair

- Amy Adams, Chris Cooper and Rashida Jones are joining Disney's The Greatest Muppet Movie Ever Made. Adams and Jason Segal play a (human) couple on a mission to reunite all the muppets to put on a show that will save a movie studio. Cooper is the villain of the piece, while Jones is a studio executive. Writer/director James Bobin (Ali G, Flight of the Conchords is directing the puppet pic for a Merry Christmas debut in 2011.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 15, 2010 5:46 AM
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Production News: The Secret in Their Eyes Remake, Downey/McQueen's Yucatan, Gravity, The Hobbit

- When a foreign film earns both critical and audience support (think Let the Right One In and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) --not to mention a Best Foreign Language film Oscar --the remake question comes up. Juan Jose Campanella's Argentine The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto De Sus Ojos) may flicker again as an English language remake at Warner Bros. The studio is in final talks for remake rights and have lined up Billy Ray (director of Shattered Glass and Breach, writer of Flightplan) to write and direct, and producer-writer-director-editor Campanella to produce. The thriller traces an ex-federal justice agent's relationship to an old murder case that haunts him and his romantic feelings for his former boss, with many flashbacks to 1974. Where and when the remake will be set is pending, but the fundamental reasons to remake this film will hopefully stay true: a gripping story with characters we care about.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • October 7, 2010 4:25 AM
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LaBeouf is Forbes' Best Deal; Americans Still Like Gibson; Lohan Talks to Vanity Fair

- Shia LaBeouf, for a second year running, tops Forbes' list of Best Actors for the Buck. As an investment, LaBeouf is very attractive: "he offers a great return…For every $1 studios spend on the 24-year-old actor his films return an average $81 of profit." LaBeouf's paychecks will continue to grow; this won't hurt his agent's requests for a raise. Forbes' top 36 earners each had to have three movies open in over 500 theaters in the past five years, and meet a myriad of other criteria including their Celebrity 100 status. LaBeouf is king and Anne Hathaway is queen at #2, earning studios $64 for each dollar they pay her. Harry Potter boy Daniel Radcliffe is #3 ($61 for them, $1 for him), Robert Downey Jr. took fourth ($33), and can-do-no-wrong Cate Blanchett took fifth ($27). And before we all dig Aniston's box-office grave, lets give her credit for landing the #6 spot on this list (and for sharing it with Meryl Streep); $21 to their studios for each dollar they earn. Johnny Depp ($18), Nic Cage ($17) and Sarah Jessica Parker ($17) round out the top ten. Basically the list rewards mid-level stars who aren't at the top of the pay heap, which suggests that the more you get paid, the less you return..
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • August 31, 2010 3:36 AM
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Mid-Summer Box Office Wrap: Top Ten Chart, Studio Report Card

At mid-summer, the box office is lagging just behind last year's pace and ticket sales are flat, reports Anthony D'Alessandro, who charts the season's winners, losers and studio market shares so far (as of last weekend). Will red-hot Inception take the number one box office crown from Toy Story 3? Stay tuned, as numbers and rankings will change by Labor Day.
  • By Anthony D'Allessandro
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  • August 5, 2010 5:37 AM
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  • 5 Comments

The Avengers Line-Up Wows Comic-Con: Downey, Jackson, Johansson, Ruffalo, Renner

Iron Man star Robert Downey, Jr. took the podium at Hall H-- after the crowd of 6000 fans were duly wowed by Marvel Studios footage from Joe Johnston's Captain America, a 40s period origin myth starring Chris Evans as the mighty hero and Hugo Weaving as Red Skull, and Kenneth Branagh's Thor, starring Australian Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins as Odin, and Natalie Portman as an earthbound scientist. Downey then brought onto the dais The Avengers crew: Samuel L. Jackson and Nick Fury's two lieutenants, Clark Gregg and Scarlett Johansson, as well as Hemsworth, Evans, Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) and Mark Ruffalo, who is replacing Edward Norton as Bruce Banner/The Hulk (earlier the fans booed Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige for dumping Edward Norton).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 25, 2010 4:17 AM
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Raimi Goes to Oz, Jesus Henry Christ, Feds Approve Box Office Trading, Somewhere Trailer

- The acting power house duo of Michael Sheen (Frost/Nixon, the under-appreciated The Damned United) and Toni Collette (United States of Tara, Little Miss Sunshine) is joining Dennis Lee's Jesus Henry Christ, reports Variety. The comedy is based on Lee's 2003 Oscar-winning student film of the same name, but as The Playlist points out, its plot resembles Sundance hit The Kids are All Right, which boasts its own power house trio (Annette Bening, Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo): children search for biological truth. With Lee's lack of hits (his first feature Fireflies in the Garden hasn't been released, and Rotten Tomatoes 25% isn't a good sign), and The Kids are All Right's high profile, this feature needs Sheen and Collette to reinvent the wheel.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 15, 2010 3:53 AM
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  • 0 Comments

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