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Ang Lee Opens Film Studio, 'Life of Pi' in His Native Taiwan

11 November 2012 12:09 PM, PST

Ang Lee may carry an American passport, but Taiwan is always in his heart. The Hollywood helmer was born in southern Taiwan, the son of a school principal, and now in his mid-50s he has come back to his roots in the southern part of the island nation to open up a new filmmaking studio with roots in Los Angeles. The new high-end production facility is being jointly run with U.S. visual effects producer Rhythm & Hues Studios and the R&H Visual Effects Center in Taiwan plans to employ 200 Taiwanese digital »


- Dan Bloom

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'Love Boat' Producer, Archivist Henry Colman Dies at 89

11 November 2012 11:23 AM, PST

Producer Henry Colman, whose resume included the hit TV comedies "The Love Boat" and "Green Acres," has died at the age of 89. Colman passed away from natural causes at his Los Angeles home on Nov. 7. Colman began his career in television just as the medium was coming into its own. After starting as a production coordinator on the local musical show "Easy Does It," he became an assistant to the director on "Kraft Television Theatre" in 1951. He also worked on "Robert Montgomery Presents" and the "Colgate Comedy Hour." Also read: »


- Todd Cunningham

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'Lincoln' Logs $81K Per-Screen in Powerful Limited Box Office Debut

11 November 2012 9:15 AM, PST

"Lincoln," a front-runner in the Academy Awards Best Picture race, got off to a fast start at the box office this weekend, bringing in $900,000 from just 11 screens in its first three days of release. That's an average of $81,818 per-screen for the Steven Spielberg-directed biopic, making it the year's third-largest limited debut. This year's best limited was September's $145,949 per-screen average from five screens for the Weinstein Company's Scientology-inspired film "The Master." "Moonrise Kingdom," Wes Anderson's quirky 1960s tale of tween love, rolled up a per-location average of $130,752 »


- Todd Cunningham

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'Little Miss Sunshine' Writer Michael Arndt to Pen 'Star Wars:Episode VII'

11 November 2012 9:04 AM, PST

Michael Arndt, who won an Academy Award for "Little Miss Sunshine," has been hired to write the screenplay for "Star Wars: Episode VII," Lucasfilm announced on its  Star Wars website on Friday.   The news follows reports the '"Toy Story 3" scribe was the leading contender for the job and had turned in a 50-page treatment for the seventh installment in the epic franchise. The film is slated to be released in 2015 and will launch a new trilogy under Disney, which acquired Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion on Oct. 30. "Star Wars" films »


- Liza Foreman

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'Skyfall' Nears $90M in Bond's Biggest Box-Office Bow Ever

11 November 2012 8:50 AM, PST

"Skyfall" shattered the record for the biggest U.S. 007 movie debut with its $87.8 million opening weekend, leaving no doubt that Daniel Craig is the most bankable Bond ever. Last week's No. 1 film, Disney's animated family film "Wreck-It Ralph," was No. 2 with $33.1 million from 3,752 screens raising its overall gross to $93.6 million. Those two films drove the overall box office, which was running about 25 percent ahead of the comparable weekend last year, when "The Immortals" led the way with $32 million. The huge haul for Sony's PG-13-rated »


- Todd Cunningham

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'Twilight' Fans Camp Out Days Ahead of Final 'Breaking Dawn' Premiere

10 November 2012 8:17 PM, PST

"Twilight" fans camped out in tents in downtown Los Angeles ahead of next week's world premiere of the last film in the vampire romance franchise. Some 2,200 people from all over the world have registered to camp on a concrete plaza outside a downtown Los Angeles movie theater, movie studio Summit Entertainment said. The fans - most of them young women - will get guaranteed spots to see stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner walk the red carpet for the November 12 premiere of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - »


- Reuters and Wrap Staff

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Rewind: Gen. Petraeus Has 'No Dirty Secrets,' Said Biographer Paula Broadwell (Video)

10 November 2012 11:47 AM, PST

General David Petraeus officially had "no dirty secrets," according to his biographer Paula Broadwell, whose affair with the CIA director led to his resignation on Friday. Broadwell promoted her book, "All In: The Education of General David Petraeus," in an  interview on "The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart in January, and the irony of her remarks may haunt her in the wake of the sudden resignation of the heretofore respected CIA chief. "Did you feel he dropped his guard with you?" asked Stewart. "No," said Broadwell, an attractive doctoral student with sculpted arms. »


- Sharon Waxman

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'Lincoln' Looking Impressively Presidential in Limited Box-Office Bow

10 November 2012 8:59 AM, PST

"Lincoln," a front-runner in the Academy Awards Best Picture race, brought in an impressive $268,000 from 11 screens in its debut Friday. If it stays on that pace, the Steven Spielberg-directed "Lincoln" will bring in about $940,000 for the weekend. That would be an average of roughly $85,000 per-screen, putting it among the year's best specialty film debuts. This year's previous best limited debut was September's $145,949 per-screen average from five screens for the Weinstein Company's Scientology-inspired film "The Master." Also read: 'Skyfall' Spies $80M Box-Office Weekend After $30M Friday Two-time Best Actor »


- Todd Cunningham

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'Skyfall' Spies $80M After Exploding for $30M at Box Office Friday

10 November 2012 8:55 AM, PST

"Skyfall" will shatter the record for the biggest James Bond movie debut ever, after taking in $30.8 million at the box office on Friday. That's an average of nearly $8,787 from each of the 3,505 theaters that the 23rd film in the 50-year-old 007 franchise is playing on. That could translate to an $80 million weekend. It received an "A" CinemaScore from first-day moviegoers, so word of mouth should be strong on Saturday and Sunday. "Skyfall" took in an additional $2.2 million from exclusive preview runs at 463 Imax and premium pricing locations on Thursday. Last week’s No. 1 film, Disney’s animated family film “Wreck-It Ralph,” was No. 2 on Friday, taking in $7.8 million from 3,752 screens. That puts it on track for a $32 million weekend and raises its overall gross to $68.4 million. »


- Todd Cunningham

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Eric Bana in talks for Paranormal Police Thriller 'Beware the Night' (Exclusive)

9 November 2012 6:35 PM, PST

Eric Bana is in talks to star in "Beware the Night," a paranormal police thriller to be directed by Scott Derrickson, a person familiar with the negotiations has told TheWrap. The story follows a New York police officer investigating real life demon possessions, exorcisms and werewolves. The project is in the process of making its way to ScreenGems, pending a rights deal. Mark Wahlberg was previously under consideration for the role than Bana is now considering. Derrickson ("The Exorcism of Emily Rose") is directing from a script that he co-wrote with Paul Boardman.  Derrickson's previous »


- Liza Foreman

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5 Students Win Samuel Goldwyn Writing Awards

9 November 2012 5:32 PM, PST

The 57th annual Samuel Goldwyn Writing Awards, recognizing excellence in dramatic writing, were announced Friday by Samuel Goldwyn Jr., president of the Samuel Goldwyn Foundation.  The first place winner is Alaric Alexander Smeets (UCLA ) for the screenplay "Life on Mars," George Larkin (Uc Berkeley) in second place for the play "The Bastard Son of William Shakespeare," and Stephen Wolf (UCLA) in third place for the TV pilot "Emperor Watson."  The first honorable mention went to Kathleen Coggshall (Uc San Francisco) for "Seventeen," and the second honorable mention went to  Marissa Matteo (UCLA) for "Lions and Men." The »


- Liza Foreman

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How Oscar Entry 'La Source' Launched a Campaign for Clean Water Across Haiti

9 November 2012 5:22 PM, PST

The documentary "La Source" was originally conceived to be the tale of a single project, the efforts by a Princeton University janitor to bring clean water to a single village in rural Haiti. Now, the film's exposure has spawned a soccer field, two schools and 20 more villages with sanitary water. The film, which follows Haiti-born Josue Lajeunesse as he fulfills his dream of bringing bacteria-free water to his native village, launched a regional project by the nonprofit Generosity Water to improve the lives of rural Haitians. "We're hoping that we can really »

- Alexander C. Kaufman

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Sony Animation Preps Sequel to Hit 'Hotel Transylvania'

9 November 2012 3:44 PM, PST

Sony Pictures Animation will make a sequel to "Hotel Transylania," one of the year's surprise hits, a spokesman for the studio told TheWrap. Tentatively titled "Hotel Transylvania 2," the film is set for a 2015 release. There is no director attached at the moment.  Genndy Tartakovsky, who directed the first one, will be helming Sony Pictures Animation's "Popeye." "Hotel Transylvania" opened to $42.5 million at the domestic box office and $50.6 worldwide, setting a new record for a September opening. It has grossed more than $250 million at the global box office »


- Lucas Shaw

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'It's Thanksgiving' - But It Feels Like Rebecca Black's 'Friday' (Video)

9 November 2012 3:11 PM, PST

"It's Thanksgiving." Everybody's looking forward to Thanksgiving, right? So why does it feel like it's (Rebecca Black's) "Friday"? Nicole Westbrook, the latest teen to release a home-cooked pop anthem on YouTube, isn't thinking about partying all weekend with "Friday" viral pop wonder Black, she's got her mind on turkey and mashed potatoes. "Oh, oh, oh, it's Thanksgiving," she croons over synth-laced beats. "We, we, we, we're gonna have a good time, with the turkey, mashed potatoes, we, we, we, we're gonna have a good time." The song and music video, released Wednesday on »


- Alexander C. Kaufman

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Networks Seek Injunction Against Aereokiller

9 November 2012 2:57 PM, PST

A group of major networks has filed suit against billionaire Alki David's Aereokiller, requesting an injunction on the service in federal court in California. Months after a Manhattan judge rejected a similar bid to shutter another service, which streams television programs over the internet, NBC Universal, ABC, CBS and Fox requested an injunction against Aereokiller in a Los Angeles courthouse, according to the lawsuit obtained by TheWrap. The networks claim that the service disrupts their ability to negotiate retransmission contracts and earn advertising revenue from the shows that are rebroadcast online. Aereokiller -- »


- Alexander C. Kaufman

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Will 'The Simpsons' Finally Win an Oscar?

9 November 2012 1:08 PM, PST

"The Simpsons" may get another shot at an Oscar thanks to a short starring Maggie Simpson, the youngest member of the yellow family from Springfield. The Academy has narrowed its list for the Animated Short Award from 56 to 10, it announced on Friday, and that list includes "Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare.'" The short, written by "Simpsons" lifers like James L. Brooks and Matt Groening, aired before screenings of "Ice Age: Continental Drift." The four-and-a-half-minute 3D short pits Maggie against her nemesis, Baby Gerald. The Academy shut "The Simpsons Movie" out »


- Lucas Shaw

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Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson Join Voice Cast for 'Lego'

9 November 2012 1:01 PM, PST

Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson, Nick Offerman and Alison Brie have joined the voice cast for Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow's "Lego: The Piece of Resistance," Warner Bros. said on Friday.  Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett and Morgan Freeman were previously announced for the upcoming 3D animated feature. The first full-length Lego theatrical feature has a Feb. 7, 2014 release date. The story revolves around an average Lego figure (Pratt) who is mistakenly identified as having extraordinary abilities that would enable the character to save the world.  Ferrell will voice President Business, an enemy »


- Liza Foreman

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Arnold Schwarzenegger Returns as - Yup - a Tough Guy in 'The Last Stand' (Video)

9 November 2012 12:57 PM, PST

Arnold Schwarzenegger is heading back to the big screen as -- you guessed it -- a tough guy in the upcoming "The Last Stand." This time, he plays a small-town sheriff and former Lapd officer, trying to prevent a fugitive drug-cartel boss from crossing through his town to get to the Mexican border. "The Last Stand," which also stars Forest Whitaker, Johnny Knoxville and Zach Gilford ("Friday Night Lights"), is the first English-language feature from the South Korean director Kim-ji Woon, whose previous movies include "A Tale of Two Sisters," "The Good, »


- Liza Foreman

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Colin Firth, Emily Blunt Film 'Arthur Newman' Goes to Cinedigm

9 November 2012 12:42 PM, PST

Cinedigm has acquired domestic distribution rights to "Arthur Newman," starring Colin Firth and Emily Blunt, the studio announced on Friday. "Arthur Newman," the directorial debut of Dante Ariola, chronicles Wallace Avery (Firth), a depressed man loathed by his ex-wife. He stages his own death and heads out on the road where he meets Mike (Blunt), who also wants a fresh start. Cinedigm will release the film in theaters mid-2013, with on-demand, premium digital, DVD and TV distribution to follow. "'Arthur Newman' is perfect for today's audiences... A deeply entertaining film highlighted by touching performances from Colin and Emily »


- Lucas Shaw

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'Lincoln' Reviews: Is Steven Spielberg's Biopic Oscar-Worthy?

9 November 2012 12:20 PM, PST

"Lincoln," with a cast of acting titans like Daniel Day-Lewis and Tommy Lee Jones, arrives in theaters Friday with many predicting big things come Oscar night. But does Steven Spielberg's  biopic of the Great Emancipator live up to the early hype? Based on initial reviews, it seems like Spielberg and company have delivered. Critics are raving about Day-Lewis' performance and crediting the film with taking a historical figure who is cloaked in myth and making him relatable and sympathetically human. Instead of uncoiling a birth-through-death chronology of Father Abraham, "Lincoln" narrows »


- Brent Lang

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