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Thompson on Hollywood

Toronto Film Festival Global Summit Draws Michael Moore, Douglas Trumbull

The Toronto International Film Festival is rounding up some 180 speakers from 80 countries for its annual industry conference and global summit (September 5 to 11). The headliner is cinema technology visionary Douglas Trumbull ("2001: A Space Odyssey"), the opening keynote speaker for the annual Asian Film Summit (September 9) is Legendary East’s Peter Loehr.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 23, 2014 4:50 PM
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FIRST LOOK: Toronto Best Actress Candidate Jessica Chastain Stars in Liv Ullmann's 'Miss Julie' (TRAILER)

Now that the dust is settling around the recent flurry of fall film festival announcements, one promising entry is a Toronto world premiere: Norwegian actress-writer-director Liv Ullmann's adaptation of Swedish playwright August Strindberg’s 1888 classic "Miss Julie." The film starring Jessica Chastain ("Zero Dark Thirty"), Colin Farrell ("Saving Mr. Banks") and Samantha Morton ("A.I.") seeks a North American distributor.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 22, 2014 4:25 PM
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  • 4 Comments

Toronto World Premieres: What Did They Get?

When Piers Handling, CEO and Director of the Toronto International Film Festival and Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of TIFF announced the new rules for 2014's fall lineup--no world premieres at Telluride if you want a first opening weekend gala slot--they may not have realized that they were setting themselves up with the media.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 22, 2014 12:45 PM
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  • 7 Comments

How Did 'Birdman,' 'Gone Girl,' 'Inherent Vice' and 'Imitation Game' Land Key Fall Festival Slots?

Everyone in Hollywood reads the industry tea leaves, the probable truth behind every announcement and its attendant spin. As the awards season takes shape, three major releases are jockeying for position: "Gone Girl," "Inherent Vice" and "Birdman." The Hollywood studios, indie distributors, Oscar campaigners and strategists were pushing the New York Film Festival (September 26 - October 12) for their awards hopefuls, wanting to land a coveted gala slot.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 21, 2014 3:33 PM
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David Ansen's Departure from Los Angeles Film Festival Signals New Direction for Fest

After five years at Film Independent's Los Angeles Film Festival, Artistic Director David Ansen is leaving to go back to writing. Also leaving is programmer Doug Jones, who takes 12 years of institutional memory with him. Very much in charge is LAFF's high-powered LAFF director, producer Stephanie Allain ("Boyz 'n the Hood"), who is pulling her friend Elvis Mitchell into a more prominent role as year-round "curator."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 14, 2014 5:28 PM
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  • 5 Comments

As Fall Fests Loom, Distributors Must Choose Between Telluride and Toronto (UPDATE)

The fabulously curated Telluride Film Festival has been on a roll of late. Founded forty years ago, the festival has been riding high on its prescient pre-Oscar bookings, from "Slumdog Millionaire" and 'The King's Speech" to "Argo." But last year, the combo of "12 Years a Slave" and "Gravity" broke the camel's back with rival Toronto Film Festival, whose artistic director Cameron Bailey threw down the gauntlet, demanding that distributors give TIFF the world or North American premiere if they want to play on the coveted high-profile opening weekend.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 18, 2014 3:46 PM
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Interview: Juliette Binoche Paints in Schepisi Romance 'Words and Pictures,' Challenged Assayas to Write Cannes Entry 'Sils Maria' (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO, TRAILER)

Oscar-winner Juliette Binoche ("The English Patient") is the best reason to see Fred Schepisi's "Words and Pictures." She talks about working with Clive Owen, learning English, and challenging Olivier Assayas to write a movie focused on women. That movie debuted in Cannes, "Clouds of Sils Maria."
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 4, 2014 10:23 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Trailer Watch: Daniel Radcliffe's New Rom-Com 'What If'

The rom com is dead, The Hollywood Reporter boldly asserted last September. And yet...? The trailer for the new Daniel Radcliffe starrer "What If" has landed, and it's hard to describe it as anything other than, well, really rom com-y.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 2, 2014 12:00 PM
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Rithy Panh Talks Oscar-Nominated 'The Missing Picture' (CLIP)

Cambodian filmmaker Rithy Panh devoted his life and career to the documentation and investigation of the Khmer Rouge -- not just the mass killings themselves but also the ideological fervor that made them possible. All of Panh’s films are personal, but "The Missing Picture," which was nominated for the Best Foreign-Language Oscar and arrives in select theaters March 19 and plays Idaho's Treefort Film Festival this weekend, is also autobiographical.
  • By Sheerly Avni
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  • March 19, 2014 1:54 PM
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The Toronto International Film Festival Insists on Premieres for its Opening Weekend

In the past few years, more and more media and fest-watchers have gotten the jump on September's smorgasbord of offerings at the Toronto International Film Festival over the Labor Day Weekend at the Telluride Film Festival where they discovered eventual Oscar-winners "The King's Speech," "Slumdog Millionaire" and "Argo"--before TIFF could claim them as its own.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 28, 2014 1:38 PM
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  • 4 Comments

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