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Thompson on Hollywood

Animation Oscar Race: Why 'The Croods' Is 'Frozen''s Only Real Challenger (FEATURETTE)

In the Oscar animation arena, competition is fierce. The conventional wisdom has $500-million global smash "Frozen," Disney's best princess musical since "Beauty and the Beast," leading the pack by a good distance. Its strongest competitor, caveman family comedy "The Croods," comes from Jeffrey Katzenberg's DreamWorks Animation, which put together a formidable filmmaking partnership. Chris Sanders (Oscar-nominated "How to Train Your Dragon") and Kirk De Micco ("Space Chimps") explain how they built a global hit --with four strong female characters.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 5, 2014 3:28 PM
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  • 7 Comments

Annie Awards Nominations Give Early Picture of Animated Oscar Race

Providing a quick advance of where the Animated Feature category of the Oscars is heading, Disney Animation's "Frozen” and Pixar's “Monsters University” led the feature film nominations for the 41st Annie Awards nominations with 10 each, while Universal/Illumination's “Despicable Me 2″ and DreamWorks Animation's “The Croods” followed with nine.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 2, 2013 12:43 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Animation Oscar Frontrunners--Will Pixar Skip This Round?

Could this be an award season with no Pixar Oscar nominee? In a weak year for top animated features, enough have been officially submitted to the Academy for Oscar consideration to likely make a race with five nominees, even though several of the films have yet to qualify via a required Los Angeles run. In the eventuality that five films don't nab high enough ratings of 7.5 (out of 6--poor--to 10--excellent), though, there could be fewer entries.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 5, 2013 2:27 PM
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  • 2 Comments

'Iron Man 3' Outpaces 'Avengers' Worldwide Grosses and U.S. Top 10 Totals

The big news this weekend: Disney/Marvel's "Iron Man 3" opened in most of the world between Wednesday and Friday; its $195 million gross in 42 territories is running ahead of even last year's "number one global blockbuster "The Avengers," which initially grossed $185 million in similar dates.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 28, 2013 12:50 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Weekend Box Office: 'Evil Dead' Rises to Top, 'G.I. Joe' Plummets, Fights for Second with 'Croods'

Sony's remake of "Evil Dead" performed better than expected, but fell just below the best horror film opening of the year. "Evil Dead" took #1 for the weekend, a position Paramount hoped to retain for its expensive "G.I. Joe: Retaliation." That film is a global hit, but is fighting for the #2 spot with Dreamworks Animation's "The Croods."
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 7, 2013 1:00 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'Evil Dead' Leads Friday Pack, 'Jurassic Park 3D' Stomps in Second

"The Evil Dead" opened well enough on Friday to make it a likely fifth horror-related film to make #1 in 2013. The twelve top-ranked horror flicks thus far have kept the year's to-date grosses from falling off more than they might have otherwise due to several underperforming costly would-be tentpoles.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 6, 2013 4:09 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Box Office: 'G.I. Joe' Delivers Very Good Friday; 'Place Beyond the Pines' Has Excellent Limited Opening; 'The Host' Disappoints

Last weekend's two $30-million openers have been followed by a strong Easter weekend that looks to top last year's. Led by Paramount's delayed release of "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" (with 3-D added and a beefed-up role for Channing Tatum), Friday's top ten films grossed an estimated $54 million, up from the $46 million total from both a year ago and from that of 2012's one-week-later Good Friday. The figure was also up from last week's $38 million, making this the rare Friday this year with across the board improvements.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • March 30, 2013 3:23 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Immersed in Movies: DreamWorks Has a 'Crood' Awakening

You couldn't find a more apt movie to sum up DreamWorks Animation at the moment than "The Croods" (March 22), the prehistoric road trip adventure about embracing change as a survival strategy when the world turns terribly hostile. After last year's box office misfire with "Rise of the Guardians," which resulted in a $165 million write-off, layoffs, and schedule reshuffle, DreamWorks is definitely in transition.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • March 15, 2013 3:04 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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