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Thompson on Hollywood

Flickchart Top 20 of 2010 Led by Inception, Scott Pilgrim

Flickchart is a film buff's addictive time-waster that's a best-to-avoid for me. Sure enough, I'm lured to check out the site's Top 20 of 2010 chart, compiled from some 49 million rankings from Flickchart users all over the world. Surprise: Inception is number one, followed by Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. (They also have a best animated films of 2010 chart, which does not include The Illusionist in its top ten. Humph.)
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 29, 2010 6:05 AM
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  • 3 Comments

IFC to Release The Other Woman, Starring Pregnant Natalie Portman

Just as we are all trying to get used to the idea of wraith-like Natalie Portman as a pregnant soon-to-be new mom, she turns up pregnant in a movie filmed two years ago that was recently picked up by IFC, The Other Woman. Written and directed by Don Roos (The Opposite of Sex) and produced by Marc Platt (Wanted), The Other Woman stars Portman as a woman trying not to be a wicked stepmom. See the trailer below.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2010 10:26 AM
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  • 6 Comments

Oscar Watch: Animated The Illusionist is Homage to Tati

Oscar Watch: Animated The Illusionist is Homage to Tati
Which animated film will land the third Oscar slot behind Toy Story 3 and How to Train Your Dragon? The critics have given a serious boost Sylvain Chomet's elegiac 2-D The Illusionist, which won best animated film at the European Film Awards and New York Film Critics Circle and a spotlight award from the National Board of Review. It's also nominated for five Annie Awards and best animated feature by the Golden Globes.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 28, 2010 5:31 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Elvis Sings Blue Christmas

The young and beautiful--and sweaty in leather--Elvis sings "Blue Christmas," one of the huge hits originally recorded on his 1957 Christmas Album. He released it as a single in 1964 (the B-side was "Wooden Heart" from the soundtrack to G.I. Blues) and first performed it in public during a 1968 television special.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 27, 2010 5:27 AM
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  • 0 Comments
More: Video

Christmas Greetings from the Francos: Grandma Franco Fires Back at 127 Hours Avoiders

Obviously, Fox Searchlight is trying to confront head-on the issue of squeamish moviegoers not wanting to see 127 Hours, which features James Franco as hiker Aron Ralston hacking off his arm. They've deployed the "I Kept My Eyes Open for 127 Hours" campaign, and now Franco (showing his usual canny promo instincts) posts a video interview with his grandmother on Funny or Die:
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 26, 2010 5:45 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Food Court Hallelujah Chorus

Flash mob or staged choir stunt? Either way it's fun to see the reaction of unsuspecting folks in a mall food court to a surprise performance of the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel's Messiah.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 25, 2010 7:50 AM
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  • 4 Comments
More: Video

Trailer Watch: Saorise Ronan Stars as Assassin Hanna

The film tradition of young women killers is long: from Natalie Portman in The Professional and Anne Parillaud and Bridget Fonda as Femme Nikita to Jennifer Garner in Alias and Chloe Moretz in Kick-Ass. Now we have a new entrant in the category: Saorise Ronan in Hanna (April 8), a Focus Features film that reunites the star with her director on Atonement, Joe Wright. The trailer is below. Eric Bana plays her father; Cate Blanchett co-stars.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 21, 2010 4:33 AM
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  • 2 Comments

THR Directors Round Table: Aronofsky, Weir, Hooper, Cholodenko, Cianfrance, Russell

THR Directors Round Table: Aronofsky, Weir, Hooper, Cholodenko, Cianfrance, Russell
Award season director contenders Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), Lisa Cholodenko (The Kids are All Right), David O. Russell (The Fighter), Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine), Peter Weir (The Way Back) and Tom Hooper (The King's Speech) talk for 68 minutes, spending time on MPAA ratings and bad behavior on set (Russell).
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 20, 2010 9:41 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Jeff Bridges Duets with Cookie Monster on SNL, Raises Star Profile

Jeff Bridges hosted Saturday Night Live (video below), yet another example that his public profile, post-Crazy Heart Oscar and with new releases TRON: Legacy and True Grit, is higher than it's ever been. (He's also been ardently pursuing a music career.) Remember, Bridges is infamous, Star Man and The Big Lebowski excepted, for being a beloved character actor who has never been a movie star. He never put butts in seats. But maybe that has changed. The box office performance of the Coens' True Grit (trailer below) will be a test of that--as will nabbing another Oscar nomination.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 20, 2010 9:20 AM
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  • 1 Comment

The Fighter's Dicky Eklund HBO Backstory

The Fighter is based on real characters from Lowell, Massachusetts, and the HBO doc on Dicky Eklund (played by Christan Bale), is up on Snagfilms.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 20, 2010 8:11 AM
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  • 2 Comments
More: Genres, Video, TV, Drama, HBO

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