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Thompson on Hollywood

SPECIALTY BOX OFFICE: 'Trip to Italy' and 'Frank' Best of New Sundance-Premiered Openers as 'Life After Beth' Lags

Three high-profile Sundance 2014 films top the grosses for this week's specialized openers. Comedy "The Trip to Italy" (IFC) and music drama "Frank" (Magnolia) fared best in theaters only--from distributors who often use day-and-date Video on Demand avenues. A third, zombie flick "Life After Beth" (A24), which has been viewable on Direct TV for the past month, opened soft in two prime bicoastal locations.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • August 17, 2014 12:58 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Top Ten Box Office Takeaways: 'Turtles' Beats 'Guardians'; 'Hundred-Foot Journey' Scores With Adults, 'Get On Up' Stumbles

For the second time this summer and the first time ever in August, two films grossed over $40 million on the same weekend. "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" (Paramount) opened over expectations at $65 million, while Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" (Buena Vista) dropped a reasonable 56%. Last summer four films opened at over $40-million mark, three on one weekend.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • August 10, 2014 4:50 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Screen Talk 4: from Sublime Ebert Doc 'Life Itself' to McCarthy's Ridiculous 'Tammy'

In our fourth Screen Talk podcast, Indiewire critic Eric Kohn and I debate the (dubious) merits of Melissa McCarthy's "Tammy"--is it a bad studio movie or a bad indie movie?--and admire the virtues of Steve James' end-of-life documentary about critic Roger Ebert, "Life Itself."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 3, 2014 5:27 PM
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  • 2 Comments

SCREEN TALK EPISODE 3: 'Transformers' vs. 'Snowpiercer,' the State of Hollywood & More Finke

Indiewire's New York critic Eric Kohn and I hit Skype again to debate movies and the state of Hollywood. Does "Transformers" represent what's wrong with the movie industry today?
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 27, 2014 1:57 PM
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  • 4 Comments

TOH! Writers Pick the 10 Best Films of 2014 So Far

As July looms, the movie year is reaching its halfway point, and in the spirit of Indiewire's new Criticwire poll of 122 critics' favorite films of 2014 so far, we at TOH! offer up our own ten best lists.
  • By TOH!
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  • June 18, 2014 4:46 PM
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  • 5 Comments

Box Office Top Ten: So Far Comedy, Family Fare and Fox Dominate the Summer

Hollywood front-loaded the summer with big-budget actioners to get ahead of the month-long World Cup, which provides massive international competition. But this weekend two sequels, Sony comedy "22 Jump Street" and Dreamworks Animation's "How to Train Your Dragon 2" scored well stateside. And both improved on their previous efforts' March openings, each delivering more than $50 million, which is rare for the same weekend.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • June 15, 2014 1:21 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Jolie's 'Maleficent' Leads Box Office Top Ten with Strong Femme Appeal, Diaz's 'Other Woman' at $81 Million

Angelina Jolie is a huge movie star. Disney knows how to reach a broad family audience led by women. And beloved fairy tales sell. These are some of the lessons learned --yet again--by "Maleficent"'s magnificent $70 million opening, which dwarfed Seth MacFarlane's western spoof "A Million Ways to Die in the West," aimed squarely at the fickle young male demo, with $17 million.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • June 1, 2014 1:47 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Director Robert Stromberg Talks 'Maleficent': Cutting Edge Virtual Cinema and Age-Old Emotional Storytelling

The path to directing from VFX and production design has certainly been a natural one for two-time Oscar winner Robert Stromberg ("Avatar," "Alice in Wonderland"). And after re-imagining Disney's iconic "Sleeping Beauty" with "Maleficent," he not only wants to continue directing but also explore new tech frontiers. In fact, Stromberg has formed his own virtual company, Hydra (in partnership with The Third Floor previs boutique and "Maleficent" production designer Dylan Cole), so he can be on the cutting edge of total cinematic immersion.so he can be on the cutting edge of total cinematic immersion.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • May 30, 2014 2:26 PM
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  • 1 Comment

'X-Men: Days of Future Past' Editor and Composer John Ottman Talks Multitasking, and Building a Marvel Epic

It's hard enough wearing two hats as editor and composer for Bryan Singer, but the trippy, time-traveling "X-Men: Days of Future Past" offered some additional challenges for John Ottman. "I think we both look fondly upon the experience we had on 'X-Men 2' and we wanted to relive that a bit so coming back to Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen allowed us to fulfill that and then expand upon the thing and make it more epic," he says.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • May 23, 2014 3:24 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Bryan Singer Plot Thickens as New Lawsuit Alleges Even Deeper History of Sexual Abuse (UPDATED)

UPDATED: The Bryan Singer case continues to shake out. An anonymous UK citizen has lodged a new claim against Singer and Goddard Group CEO Gary Goddard alleging underage sexual abuse. He is represented by Jeff Herman, the same attorney who filed Michael Egan's recent suit against the "X-Men" director less than two weeks ago.
  • By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio
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  • May 5, 2014 1:20 PM
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  • 17 Comments

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