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Thompson on Hollywood

#SXSW Wrap, Hits and Misses

#SXSW Wrap, Hits and Misses
Continuing to build its rep as a balmy spring destination for genre fans and cinephiles alike, the 17th South by Southwest Film Festival saw a strong turnout at films and panels appealing to young males and indie filmgoers, from opener Kick-Ass and stoner-comedy Leaves of Grass to the more finely calibrated critics' faves Tiny Furniture (which won the dramatic jury prize) and Cold Weather. Clearly, the fest hasn’t lost its indie cred, although a hardcore midnight screening of A Serbian Film tested the limits of many filmgoers.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 23, 2010 2:04 AM
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  • 2 Comments

#SXSW: MacGruber Panel, Trailer

#SXSW: MacGruber Panel, Trailer
MacGruber cost just $10 million, a micro budget for a Universal release starring Ryan Phillippe, Val Kilmer, Will Forte, Seth Meyers, Powers Boothe and Kristin Wiig. The gang stopped by the IFC House Tuesday for a Matt Singer interview and photo shoot.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 17, 2010 2:12 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Green Zone: New Clip

It doesn't surprise me that Green Zone is being targeted as a leftie movie. That's because the film--from Brit Paul Greengrass--wears its politics on its sleeve. To me, the film bears the ring of truth, and made me fighting mad. But politics aside, the exhilarating filmmaking alone makes it a must-see.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 13, 2010 12:54 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Weekend Preview: Pattinson vs. Damon in Melodramatic Remember Me and Political Green Zone

Weekend Preview: Pattinson vs. Damon in Melodramatic Remember Me and Political Green Zone
Heading into its second weekend, Disney’s Alice in Wonderland will continue to score big numbers. According to Flixster, the Tim Burton fantasy (which has a Tomatoscore of 52%) is pacing about five times ahead of this week’s new releases. That's not hard, because none of the newcomers are crossing over from their target demo. (Trailers are on the jump.) UPDATE: Box office watchers can now place bets on their predictions.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 11, 2010 2:21 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Berlin Film Fest: Universal Reclaims International Production for UPI

Berlin Film Fest: Universal Reclaims International Production for UPI
A year after Universal merged its international production group and Focus Films International, the studio is moving Christian Grass's division back under Universal and naming Grass UPI's president of international production and acquisitions, reporting to new UPI president and president of international for Universal Pictures David Kosse and Universal co-chairman Donna Langley.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 12, 2010 12:22 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Rick Baker is Star of Disappointing The Wolfman

Rick Baker is Star of Disappointing The Wolfman
You may think that Benicio del Toro, Anthony Hopkins, Hugo Weaving and Emily Blunt star in Universal's long-delayed reboot of the classic monster tale The Wolfman. While they all deliver enjoyable performances, del Toro is hopelessly miscast as Brit noble Hopkins' returned "prodigal son," who was sent away to be raised by an aunt in America. Del Toro looks uncomfortable in 19th century tweeds as he chases corseted beauty Blunt. If the guy can't pull off a British accent, then don't cast him. The star of the monster movie which opens Friday is make-up effects master Rick Baker. The movie is over-labored and may not make back its budget (it should open in the number two spot behind Valentine's Day) but the R-for-violence wolfman transformations and action scenes are superb. UPDATE: Reviews are not good. Tomatometer: 35%, Metascore: 44.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • February 10, 2010 10:04 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Fourteen Questions for It's Complicated's Nancy Meyers

Fourteen Questions for It's Complicated's Nancy Meyers
During a few scenes in It's Complicated, the latest comedy from writer-director Nancy Meyers (What Women Want, Something's Gotta Give), I laughed so hard that tears came out of my eyes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2009 1:14 AM
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  • 7 Comments

Things I Heard on the Oscar Party Circuit

'Tis the season for Oscar parties. They come in different shapes and sizes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 4, 2009 11:31 AM
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  • 3 Comments

Comcast Makes NBC Universal Deal

As predicted, now that Vivendi has agreed to sell its 20% stake in NBC Universal for $5.8 billion, the deal for cable corp. Comcast to acquire NBC Universal from GE has gone through. Comcast would be the sixth owner of Universal over the past two decades. (The Obama administration could take a year to review the deal before the two companies can merge.) Comcast will pay $13.75 billion for a majority stake in a combined entertainment entity to be run by NBCU chief Jeff Zucker.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 3, 2009 4:45 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Precious, Last Station Score Five Indie Spirit Noms

Precious, Last Station Score Five Indie Spirit Noms
It was amusing watching announcers Matt Dillon and Taraji Henson maul the global Independent Spirit Awards nominees live on UStream Tuesday morning: they couldn't wrap their tongues around many of the names. Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire and The Last Station dominated with five nominations apiece. Best feature and best actor nominee 500 Days of Summer and best director James Gray (Two Lovers) were other big surprises. The announcement of Paramount's breakout thriller Paranormal Activity for best first feature (made for $15,000), brought gasps in the room. Excellent move: that film defines an indie breakout.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 1, 2009 4:08 AM
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  • 4 Comments

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