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Thompson on Hollywood

Upcoming Hurricane Sandy Film Continues Hollywood's Preoccupation with Technology's Place in Our Lives

After Hurricane Sandy made landfall in October 2012, I became one of the residents of Manhattan’s newest neighborhood: SoPo, the wonderfully NYC-esque portmanteau for South of Power. This month, a new film about the power outage called "3rd Street Blackout" is set to begin production in New York.
  • By Jacob Combs
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  • June 3, 2014 12:10 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Box Office Top Ten: 'Other Woman' Unseats 'Captain America' in Top Spot Ahead of Upcoming Male-Centric Tentpoles

Just after Easter holiday playtime, and right ahead of the first of the summer juggernauts, comes this late April weekend. It was guaranteed to be something of a breather after a strong 2014 so far. Even so, the Top Ten total still managed to come in over 20% better than last year, though the three-day take was the lowest this year since late February. Led by a rare female-dominated studio release, the performance overall was enhanced by the strong holdovers behind it.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 27, 2014 1:44 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'The Other Woman' Beats Out 'Captain America' for Top Spot; 'Transcendence' Is Disaster

Nick Cassavetes' female-centric "The Other Woman" (20th Century Fox) took in $9.3 million yesterday, more than double the gross of any other film yesterday as it heads for a clear weekend victory. The Cameron Diaz-starring comedy looks to come close to the opening gross of "Bridesmaids" in 2011. That smash hit did $7.8 million on its first day before strong word of mouth and a long summer run propelled it to a $169 million domestic total.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 26, 2014 6:26 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Career Watch: Can Depp Transcend His Rep for Onscreen Quirk?

For most actors, playing a cyber-age Dr. Frankenstein whose consciousness is converted into an artificial-intelligence experiment that threatens humankind would be considered a rather unusual role. But casting Johnny Depp as a mad scientist in the just-opened sci-fi thriller “Transcendence”? It barely registers a ripple on his scale of bizarre characters.
  • By Susan Wloszczyna
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  • April 21, 2014 6:19 AM
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  • 3 Comments

'Captain America' Tops Box Office Top Ten for Third Week as Depp's 'Transcendence' Flops

This Easter weekend three religious-themed films made the Top 10, led by new opener "Heaven Is for Real" (Sony) which barely missed taking the #2 spot despite playing in more than 1,000 fewer screens than the box office leaders. This unheralded low-budget effort reinforces the most significant trend of 2014 so far: faith-based films nabbing substantial audiences.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 20, 2014 1:03 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Friday Box Office: Sequels Beat New Entries, Faith-Based 'Heaven' Is Strong, 'Transcendence' Starts off Weak

Easter Weekend, with its Friday school holiday, is usually an appealing date for new releases, and the studios came through with four debuts. Despite that, two holdover films, both sequels, came in #1 and #2 yesterday, with "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (Buena Vista) and "Rio 2" (20th Century Fox), at $9.6 and $9.2 respectively, leading the way.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • April 19, 2014 3:48 PM
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Wally Pfister Talks Analog vs. Digital in 'Transcendence'

Wally Pfister not only adores film but also vinyl. That's because they both embody "the breath of life," analog beauty that's at the heart of "Transcendence." Indeed, the Oscar-winning cinematographer ("Inception") and Christopher Nolan's former right hand man couldn't have found a more personal statement for his directorial debut than a cautionary tale about uploading human consciousness into a super computer.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • April 18, 2014 1:15 PM
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This Weekend in Theaters, Johnny Depp Transcends and John Turturro Is 'Fading'

Though "Transcendence" is the box office hopeful this weekend, a number of offbeat indies and festival favorites also hit theaters, from director/star John Turturro's "Fading Gigolo" to the visually splendid Nepalese doc "Manakamana," and more.
  • By TOH!
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  • April 17, 2014 4:03 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Talking Tech and 'Transcendence' with Johnny Depp and Wally Pfister (VIDEO)

You can always bet on a lively press conference with Johnny Depp, but the recent tech talk about "Transcendence" and the inevitability of uploading human consciousness into a super computer brought out his more vulnerable side. Depp admitted, among other things, that he's too clumsy when it comes to texting and that his role as an AI scientist-turned megalomaniac was difficult without a flamboyant mask to hide behind.
  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • April 16, 2014 1:37 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'Transcendence' Review Roundup: Mind-Blowing, or Just Brain-Dead?

Reviews are in for Wally Pfister's directorial debut "Transcendence," the ambitious sci-fi film starring Johnny Depp as a scientist whose efforts to create the ultimate artificial intelligence machine land him square in the middle of an ideological war.
  • By Ryan Lattanzio
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  • April 16, 2014 12:56 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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