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Thompson on Hollywood

Green Lantern and Mr. Popper's Penguins Could Disappoint, Buck, Page One, Art of Getting By

No one expected Warners' DC movie Green Lantern to score with critics (it managed a mere 22% Tomatometer score), as opposed to well-reviewed Super 8 and X-Men: First Class, which are still going strong at the box office. But Warners is putting $100 million of marketing muscle behind the $200 million movie. An entire franchise is at stake. They're so confident that they introduce a new villain at the end. (Anyone who's read the comics already knows he's a bad guy.) Box office prognosticators are upbeat, predicting a $50 to 60 million weekend; so far the movie is off to a strong start on 3816 screens, 2711 of them 3-D.
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • June 17, 2011 5:22 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Trailer Watch: Brad Pitt Stars in Moneyball, Which Could Be Oscar Contender

Brad Pitt stars as manager Billy Beane in Sony's Moneyball (September 23), a baseball movie about the come-from-behind Oakland A's. Robin Wright, Jonah Hill and Philip Seymour Hoffman co-star in the drama adapted by Steven Zaillian (Schindler's List) from Michael Lewis's nonfiction bestseller. Bennett Miller, who had been looking for the right follow-up to Capote, took over the directing reins after Steven Soderbergh fell out of the Scott Rudin (The Social Network) production. Judging from this trailer, this movie looks like a winner, and an Oscar-contender to boot. With The Tree of Life giving Pitt extra cred with Academy voters, who are bound to be polarized on the film, Moneyball looks like a slow lob down-the-middle home run for Pitt.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 16, 2011 8:42 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Has Hollywood Stopped Trying? The Smurfs vs. Mr. Popper's Penguins

It's Thursday and another fun-filled summer weekend at the movies is looming. There's good news in the Hollywood forecast: Jurassic Park may be rebooted, Jon Hamm and Melissa McCarthy may star together in a comedy, Angelina Jolie and David O. Russell may pair for Maleficent and the Coens are doing a musical. But check out this more sobering look at how Hollywood has stopped trying.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 16, 2011 8:21 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Hooper's Les Mis Wants Hugh Jackman; Winslet, Brolin, Reitman Triple Threat

- Tom Hooper's Les Miserables may star Hugh Jackman and Paul Bettany. Jackman is in talks to star as tenor Jean Valjean. The project is produced by veteran theater maestro Cameron Mackintosh (whose version of the play served as the basis for William Nicholson's script) and will feature Claude-Michel Schoenberg's original score. Working Title's Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner are also producing. Bettany may be targeted for the role of police inspector Javert. We know at least one of these boys can sing (see Jackman perform at the Tonys with Neil Patrick Harris, below). It's hard not to love Jackman. He was even (SPOILER ALERT) the third best part of X-Men: First Class (with mere seconds of screen time), right behind stars Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy. Who else would you like to see in Hooper's Les Miserables?
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 16, 2011 7:58 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Video Watch: Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill Star in Bennett Miller's Baseball Drama Moneyball

Brad Pitt stars as Billy Beane in Moneyball (September 23), a baseball drama about the Oakland A's. Robin Wright, Jonah Hill and Philip Seymour Hoffman co-star in the drama adapted by Steven Zaillian (Schindler's List) from Michael Lewis's nonfiction bestseller. Bennett Miller (Capote) took over the directing reins after Steven Soderbergh fell out of Sony's Scott Rudin production.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 15, 2011 9:25 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Green Lantern Reviews: "Inert, Underwhelming," Reynolds "Little More than a Torso and a Smirk"

Green Lantern Reviews: "Inert, Underwhelming," Reynolds "Little More than a Torso and a Smirk"
Warner/DC's Green Lantern wants to blow your mind, starting June 17, one day after its premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival. Even the more generous reviews below suggest that we shouldn't expect a mind-blowing quality film. (We see it Wednesday.) Best case scenario: the comics fanbase will jump into the bizarre universe they know so well. Worst case is topliner Ryan Reynolds, co-stars Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard, Mark Strong and Angela Bassett and director Martin Campbell will wish they hadn't gone green, and the movie's prohibitive estimated $300-million cost won't yield big enough returns. Tentpoles, after all, are supposed to deliver profits to support the studio.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 15, 2011 5:44 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Hero Complex Fest: Captain America, Favreau, Downey, Iron Man, Cowboys & Aliens, Avengers, Comic-Con

Hero Complex Fest: Captain America, Favreau, Downey, Iron Man, Cowboys & Aliens, Avengers, Comic-Con
Geoff Boucher has a good gig. His Hero Complex print/blog combo gets first crack--along with EW and MTV Movies--at the best access to the top genre movies, including set visits and early interviews. The guy's a strong reporter--he's been at the LAT for some 20 years--and his enthusiasm for the Comic-Con universe is genuine. The LAT has been promoing his second annual Hero Complex Film Festival, which took place last weekend.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • June 13, 2011 11:01 AM
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  • 2 Comments

Summer's Nine Worst Movie Trailers: Green Lantern, Three Musketeers, Change-Up, Mr. Popper

Summer's Nine Worst Movie Trailers: Green Lantern, Three Musketeers, Change-Up, Mr. Popper
The trailers that played in front of X-Men: First Class -- a disappointment in itself after so many strong early reviews -- were about as inspiring as January Jones' line delivery. We were, however, inspired to compile this list of trailers that have turned their films into musts-to-avoid. We can't decide which looks worse, Green Lantern (June 17) or The Three Musketeers (October 14) (you can vote in our poll below). The former is a reportedly $300 million movie that should guarantee Ryan Reynolds is never taken seriously again, with co-star/man-candy Blake Lively's over-exposure far more entertaining than the sub-par CGI aliens. As for Musketeers, the new trailer now playing at a theater new you (the old one is below) plays like soft-core porn for 15-year old girls.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • June 13, 2011 9:00 AM
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  • 16 Comments

News Wrap: Hamm Talks Mad Men, Hanks Releases New Larry Crowne Trailer, In Talks with Zemeckis

“I think it should end. Everything should end.” So states Mad Men star Jon Hamm in this interview with the BBC, during which he also criticized AMC studio bosses for the hold up of Mad Men’s fifth season: “When billionaires fight it tends to take a lot longer than when normal people do."
  • By Maggie Lange
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  • June 13, 2011 5:35 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Judy Garland Plays Lincoln Center: 31 Musicals In All, Complete with Wizard of Oz Sing-along

Judy Garland Plays Lincoln Center: 31 Musicals In All, Complete with Wizard of Oz Sing-along
When it comes to celebrating Judy Garland’s birthday, the requisite song and blow-out-your-candles-now dance just doesn’t quite cut it.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 12, 2011 3:40 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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