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The Path 'The Last Jedi' Didn't Take

1 hour ago

[Warning: This story contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi]

Light. Darkness. Good. Evil. The nature of heroism. When it comes to big issues of ethical philosophy, The Last Jedi puts a lot on its plate. Considering how Episode VIII writer-director Rian Johnson’s last directorial film outing, 2012's Looper, featured an intriguing gut-punch of a downer ending, I came into Episode VIII hoping for an entertaining journey with a relatively bleak twist of a conclusion. But getting off that admittedly very enjoyable, though decidedly long, ride, I found my fannish glee tinged with a faint but bitter aftertaste »


- Ciara Wardlow

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'Lady Bird' Named Best Film of 2017 by Vancouver Critics Circle

1 hour ago

The Vancouver Film Critics Circle on Monday unveiled its pick for the best in film of 2017, with Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird named as best picture.

The film also earned the best actress crown for Saoirse Ronan and best supporting actress for Laurie Metcalf. Another multiple award winner was Phantom Thread, which earned Paul Thomas Anderson the best director trophy and Daniel Day-Lewis the best actor honor.

Elsewhere, Willem Dafoe won for best supporting actor for his star-turn in The Florida Project, and the best screenplay trophy went to Jordan Peele for Get Out. And the Cannes Grand »


- Etan Vlessing

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Stx Entertainment to Distribute Golden Globes in China (Exclusive)

1 hour ago

Bob Simonds' Stx Entertainment has picked up the exclusive China distribution rights to the 75th Golden Globe Awards telecast in January.

As part of a deal inked with Dick Clark Productions and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Stx will work with Chinese partners on  live terrestrial and streaming-video broadcasts, making the awards show available to viewers across the Middle Kingdom.

Stx Entertainment's digital division, STXdigital, meanwhile, will produce a new Chinese-language pre-show from the Globes's red carpet starring Chinese celebrity hosts. STXdigital also is handling the exclusive local rights to the Golden Globes 75th Anniversary Special.

"Chinese viewers will have »


- Patrick Brzeski

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Alyssa Milano, Minnie Driver Slam Matt Damon's "Spectrum of Behavior" Sexual Misconduct Comments

1 hour ago

Matt Damon has found himself under fire after he spoke about a need to recognize a "spectrum of behavior" covering the range of sexual misconduct allegations that have emerged in recent weeks.

In an interview on ABC News' Popcorn With Peter Travers, the Downsizing actor, who's previously spoken out about the claims made against Harvey Weinstein, said he finds it “wonderful” that women are speaking out against their alleged perpetrators. But, he argued, there is a “spectrum of behavior” that underlies the issue brought up in the current "culture of outrage."

“I do believe that there’s a spectrum of behavior, »


- Lexy Perez

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Athena Film Festival: J.J. Abrams to Receive Leading Man Award

2 hours ago

Writer/director/producer J.J. Abrams will be recognized for his ongoing support and advocacy of women in the entertainment industry with the 2018 leading man award at the female-focused Athena Film Festival, it was announced Monday.

The Star Wars and Star Trek director, who will write and direct the upcoming Star Wars: Episode IX, broke through when he created female-focused TV series Felicity and Alias.

Abrams "has been championing women in the industry throughout his entire career, and through his leadership has continued to push the gender equality conversation,” Athena co-founder Melissa Silverstein said in a statement.

Co-founder Kathryn Kolbert added, “At »


- Hilary Lewis

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Mark Cuban's Landmark Theatres Demands Dismissal of Antitrust Lawsuit

2 hours ago

In new court papers, Mark Cuban-owned Landmark Theatres insists there's no antitrust conspiracy from seeking the exclusive rights to exhibit a movie in a geographic region as long as the theater chain is not using its nationwide footprint to coerce distributors.

Landmark is facing a lawsuit from a group of independent community movie theaters who complain about being deprived of art films. According to the complaint in D.C. federal court, Landmark demanded and obtained clearances from those distributing such films as Moonlight, Birdman and The Illusionist. The plaintiffs, operating movie theaters in Washington, D.C., Denver and Detroit, suggest Landmark accomplished this by exploiting »


- Eriq Gardner

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'The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers': THR's 2002 Review

3 hours ago

On Dec. 18, 2002, Peter Jackson unveiled the middle chapter of his Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Two Towers. The film went on to nab 6 Oscar noms at the 75th Academy Awards. The Hollywood Reporter's original review is below:

Well on its way to becoming one of the greatest achievements in cinema history with last year's Oscar-winning first installment, filmmaker Peter Jackson's grand realization of The Lord of Rings epic by J.R.R. Tolkien continues with The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. The much-anticipated New Line release is destined to rule the holiday season boxoffice and rival the »


- THR Staff

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Christopher Plummer Reveals How He Shot 'All the Money in the World' in Just 9 Days

3 hours ago

Not only did Christopher Plummer replace Kevin Spacey in Ridley Scott’s finished film All the Money in the World, he also nabbed a surprise Golden Globe nomination less than two weeks after portraying J. Paul Getty for the Sony film, in theaters Dec. 25.

From his home in Connecticut, Plummer spent a bit of his birthday with The Hollywood Reporter to talk shooting all his scenes in just nine days, opting not to watch any of Spacey’s footage and continually challenging himself at 88 years old: “I’m not pushing up the daisies just yet.”

How did Scott approach you?

»


- Ashley Lee

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: How #MeToo Can Help Right America's Wrongs in 2018

3 hours ago

Man, 2017 has been the Tommy Wiseau of the century. A whole year of our short stay on Earth has been hijacked by a cast of clueless characters so tone- and times-deaf that they’ve made America look like the national road company version of The Room (“You’re tearing me apart!”). These disaster artists are dominating not only politics but, worse, our pop culture, which acts as the prophetic entrails of our country’s cultural and social future. And right now, those are some pretty grim gizzards.

The end-of-year party theme for 2017 is 
the long overdue Abuse of Power for Idiots. »


- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

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7 Predictions for 2018's Biggest Stories in Media, Film and TV

3 hours ago

Deals

The Urge to Merge 

After Disney acquires a large chunk of 21st Century Fox, the next big merger could be CBS and Lionsgate. While many on Wall Street have been pining
 for CEO Leslie Moonves to recombine CBS with Viacom,
 this move would be a way to give CBS the bigger media footprint 
it needs. Lionsgate already distributes movies made by CBS Films, Lionsgate-owned Starz would complement CBS-owned Showtime, and Lionsgate content would help beef up the CBS All Access streaming service with films from the Hunger Games, Saw and Twilight franchises and TV shows like Orange Is the »


- THR Staff

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Saudi Arabia's Billion-Dollar Gift to the Film World

3 hours ago

It’s not every day that a previously untapped market valued at $1 billion opens its doors, so the decision by Saudi Arabia to lift its 35-year ban on cinemas saw a flurry of excitement far and wide.

Coming amid sweeping reforms being ushered into the strict, Islamic kingdom by new Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (known widely as Mbs), the announcement by the Minister of Culture and Information came following recent moves that have drastically cut the powers of the feared religious police, allowed music concerts to take place and seen women finally be allowed to apply for driving licenses.

»

- Alex Ritman

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'Star Wars: Episode IX' Needs to Deliver These Answers

4 hours ago

[Spoiler Warning: Don’t read any further if you haven’t seen Star Wars: The Last Jedi yet. No, really.]

By the end of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, audiences are likely to feel a complicated mixture of emotions — elation, exhaustion, sadness — but one question is sure to be on everyone’s minds as they leave the theater: What happens next?

After all, The Last Jedi changes the status quo of the series significantly, seemingly killing a number of characters and drastically altering the scale of the conflict (or, at least, the size of the Resistance). It leaves the series in »


- Graeme McMillan

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Rep Sheet Roundup: ICM Partners Signs Nascar Champ Kurt Busch

4 hours ago

Who got signed, promoted, hired or fired? The Hollywood Reporter’s Rep Sheet rounds up the week in representation news. To submit announcements for consideration, contact rebecca.sun@thr.com.

Gunning for Hollywood

Nascar Cup and Daytona 500 champ Kurt Busch has signed with ICM Partners as well as Orlando-based Livewire Entertainment for management. “We are thrilled to be working with a premier talent such as Kurt and believe he has a long and great future in television ahead of him,” ICM’s Matt Sorger and Lou Oppenheim said in a joint statement.

Said Livewire founder Joe Mulvihill in a statement, “I am thrilled »


- Rebecca Sun

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Berlin Film Festival Unveils First Competition Titles

6 hours ago

The Berlin Film Festival on Monday unveiled the first competition titles for its latest edition, which takes place in February.

Gus Van Sant's latest film, Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot, and Dovlatov from director Alexey German Jr., who a few years ago won the festival's Silver Bear for his Under Electric Clouds, are among the first films selected. »


- Scott Roxborough,Georg Szalai

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China Box Office: Feng Xiaogang's 'Youth' Opens to $48M, 'Coco' Crosses $150M

13 hours ago

While most of planet earth was watching Star Wars: The Last Jedi this weekend, Chinese film fans were turning out in droves to catch a nostalgic period drama about a Communist Party military dance troupe.

Feng Xiaogang's Youth overcame a six-week release delay and heavy censorship scrutiny to open at the top of China's box office with a winning $48 million. The film was originally set to debut back Oct. 1, shortly after its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival; but it was abruptly pulled from the release schedule just days prior. No official explanation was ever provided, »

- Patrick Brzeski

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Jazz and Pop Singer Keely Smith, Frequent Louis Prima Collaborator, Dies at 89

16 hours ago

Keely Smith, a pop and jazz singer known for her solo recordings of jazz standards as well as her musical partnership with Louis Prima, has died of apparent heart failure in Palm Springs, Calif. She was 89.

According to a news release from her publicist Bob Merlis, Smith was under a physician’s care when she died Saturday.

Smith was born Dorothy Jacqueline Keely in Norfolk, Va., on March 9, 1928, and was still a teenager when she began singing with Louis Prima's band.

She and Prima married in 1953, and together, they won a Grammy in 1959 for their hit "That Old Black »


- the Associated Press,Billboard Staff

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'Bingo: The King of the Mornings' ('Bingo: O rei das manhas'): Film Review

16 hours ago

Rounding off a vintage year for scary clowns on the big screen, Bingo: The King of the Mornings is a boisterous Brazilian comic drama charting the explosive rise and fall of a blue-haired children’s television star with debauched offscreen appetites. Oscar-nominated editor Daniel Rezende, whose credits include Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life and Fernando Meirelles’ City of God, does a pretty solid job on his feature directing debut. Currently screening in U.K. theaters following a successful domestic run, the film was chosen as Brazil’s official Academy Awards contender in the foreign-language category, though it ultimately failed to make the final »


- Stephen Dalton

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Did 'The Last Jedi' Treat Its Villains Right?

16 hours ago

[Warning: This story contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi]

One of the biggest questions fans had after watching Star Wars: The Force Awakens was, “Who is Supreme Leader Snoke?“

Speculation and theories abounded in the aftermath of the movie’s release, and continued until Star Wars: The Last Jedi answered the question with a resounding, “Who cares? He’s dead now.”

Well. That was one way to deal with the issue.

The death of Snoke was, at once, a highlight of The Last Jedi — because, really, who saw that coming? — and an example of one of the ways »


- Graeme McMillan

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