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Box office report: 'The Hunger Games' wins the weekend (and the year)

15 hours ago

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay -- Part 1 predictably topped this weekend's box office -- but less predictably didn't do as well as the previous films in the franchise. The previous Hunger Games film, Catching Fire, also opened on the weekend before Thanksgiving, but ended its weekend with $158 million. Mockingjay, though, grossed $123 million. Compared to $158 million, and to the original Hunger Games' $152.5 million opening in 2012, $123 million is disappointing. But in the context of 2014, it's amazing: Mockingjay had a stronger opening than any other film this year, beating out Transformers: Age of Extinction's $100 million debut. And while Catching Fire's domestic opening beat Mockingjay's, »


- Ariana Bacle

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Times Change: 'Jurassic World' teases with three homages to Steven Spielberg's original

15 hours ago

The turkey, according to scienticians, may have evolved from ancient dinosaurs, so think about that as you chew your Thanksgiving dinner while awaiting this Thursday's full teaser reveal for Jurassic World. The fourth installment of the scientists-were-so-preoccupied-with-whether-or-not-they-could-that-they-didn't-stop-to-think-if-they-should series will reveal its first big promo for the June 12 film during Thanksgiving football on NBC. To let everyone know, they've sent out a few seconds today. Feast your eyes … »


- Anthony Breznican

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'Jurassic World' teases Thanksgiving trailer with worried Chris Pratt

15 hours ago

The turkey, according to scienticians, may have evolved from ancient dinosaurs, so think about that as you chew your Thanksgiving dinner while awaiting this Thursday's full teaser reveal for Jurassic World. The fourth installment of the scientists-were-so-preoccupied-with-whether-or-not-they-could-that-they-didn't-stop-to-think-if-they-should series will reveal its first big promo for the June 12 film during Thanksgiving football on NBC. To let everyone know, they've sent out a few seconds today. Feast your eyes … »


- Anthony Breznican

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Casting Net: 'Doctor Who' alum Matt Smith to star in 'Patient Zero'

21 November 2014 6:27 PM, PST

• Doctor Who alum Matt Smith will star opposite Natalie Dormer in Patient Zero. Stefan Ruzowitzky is directing the action thriller from a script by Mike Le. The story follows the spread of a super strain of rabies, which leads to the evolution of a new, violent species. An immune survivor must race to find Patient Zero, and a cure, to save his infected wife and the human race at large. [Deadline] • Brenton Thwaites is in final negotiations for the role of a British soldier, Henry, in the fifth Pirates of the Caribbean installment. The actor is known for this year's Maleficent and The Giver. »


- C. Molly Smith

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Hear Jennifer Lawrence sing 'The Hanging Tree' in 'Mockingjay'

21 November 2014 4:59 PM, PST

Jennifer Lawrence is bringing her vocals to The Hunger Games film series once more, whether she likes it or not. In The Hunger Games, Katniss sings "Rue's Lullaby" to say goodbye to her friend and late District 11 tribute. In The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part 1, Katniss sings "The Hanging Tree," which she learned from her father. The song becomes an anthem for the revolution against the capitol. The lyrics are from the book, written by Suzanne Collins. The Lumineers, known for hits such as "Ho Hey" and "Stubborn Love," wrote the melody for its big-screen debut. In an interview with AOL, »


- C. Molly Smith

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Nsync alum Jc Chasez joins cast of Topher Grace musical 'One Shot'

21 November 2014 2:51 PM, PST

Hot on the heels of the news that Topher Grace and Taye Diggs will star in an upcoming film musical entitled One Shot, the production's added another big name. According to Deadline, *Nsync veteran Jc Chasez has signed on to play a bad guy, the star of the stage musical within the film who sleeps with the ex-girlfriend of Grace's character, a production manager who has to pull together an eccentric cast and crew for the musical's opening night. »


- Miles Raymer

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Critical Mass: 'Mockingjay' reviews hung up on two-part finale

21 November 2014 12:00 PM, PST

The biggest clash at the movies in this year might not be Katniss against the Capitol, but Katniss against Guardians of the Galaxy. In 2013, Catching Fire was the year's top grossing movie, and now, with Mockingjay—Part 1, Jennifer Lawrence has a chance to make it two years in a row. Industry analysts are expecting the biggest opening weekend of the year, one that could approach $150 million (though Thursday-night business was soft). The sequel—the first of two films based on Suzanne Collins' best-selling finale, Mockingjay—picks up right after where Catching Fire concluded. In the end of the previous installment, »


- Jeff Labrecque

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Leighton Meester and Gillian Jacobs talk Tinder in 'Life Partners'

21 November 2014 11:00 AM, PST

Some nights you browse Tinder hoping for a good match. Other nights you lie in bed with your best friend examining each others' boobs. Or, in the case of Sasha and Paige in Life Partners, you do both. Gossip Girl's Leighton Meester and Community's Gillian Jacobs star as Sasha and Paige in Life Partners, a film that follows two best friends and what happens when one of them gets a boyfriend, played by Meester's real-life husband Adam Brody. It's silly and heartfelt and a surprisingly realistic portrayal of female friendships. Case in point: Sasha yells about how badly »


- Ariana Bacle

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Emma Thompson on Mike Nichols: 'He lifted us all up'

21 November 2014 6:31 AM, PST

When Mike Nichols died yesterday at the age of 83, he left behind an immense legacy of work that will live forever, from his comedy routines with Elaine May to films like The Graduate and plays like The Odd Couple. But if the last 24 hours have proven anything, it's that his true genius lay in his relationships with other people and his ability to make those around him feel special and alive. During his long career, Nichols worked with and mentored the most talented writers and actors of multiple generations, and the outpouring of genuine sadness and fond recollections has been truly stirring. »


- Jeff Labrecque

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See the exclusive music video for 'The Hobbit's 'Last Goodbye,' with Billy Boyd and goosebumps aplenty

21 November 2014 6:00 AM, PST

When it came to finally bid farewell to Middle-earth after 16 years and six epic films, Peter Jackson gave the last word to one of the original members of the Fellowship. Billy Boyd, who portrayed loyal hobbit Pippin in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, collaborated with Jackson, Fran Walsh, and Philippa Boyens to write "The Last Goodbye," the song that will play over the credits when The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies opens on Dec. 17. "We had to get the song just right, to send the audience out of the movie theater in the most perfect way we could, »


- Jeff Labrecque

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Greer Grammer named Miss Golden Globe

20 November 2014 6:30 PM, PST

Greer Grammer will be this year's Miss Golden Globe, the awards announced Thursday. The 22-year-old actress plays ditzy Lissa on MTV's Awkward; she also appears in the upcoming film Life Partners, opposite Leighton Meester, Adam Brody, and Gillian Jacobs. And, as Miss and Mr. Golden Globe of years past, she also happens to be the child of a celebrity: as you may have guessed, Grammer's father is three-time Golden Globe winner Kelsey Grammer. (Her mother is makeup artist Barrie Buckner.) Grammer joins a long line of past Golden Globe assistants including Sosie Bacon, daughter of Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick; Sam Fox, »


- Hillary Busis

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Casting Net: Penelope Cruz signs on for 'Zoolander 2'

20 November 2014 6:02 PM, PST

• Penelope Cruz will star opposite Ben Stiller in Zoolander 2. Stiller is directing from a script by Justin Theroux, and will produce alongside Stuart Cornfeld for Red Hour. Will Ferrell and Owen Wilson are rumored to be reprising their roles as Mugatu and Hansel, respectively. [Deadline] • Mel Gibson and Andrew Garfield are in talks for the World War II drama Hacksaw Ridge. Gibson would direct the film with Garfield in the role of Private First Class Desmond T. Doss, a war hero who won the Congressional Medal of Honor, two Bronze Stars, and three Purple Hearts. Doss saved 75 men during the Battle of Okinawa, »


- C. Molly Smith

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Steve McQueen to bring British TV series 'Widows' to the big screen

20 November 2014 4:57 PM, PST

Steve McQueen is directing, writing, and producing a big screen adaptation of the British TV series Widows, EW has confirmed. The 1983 TV mini-series, written by Lynda La Plante, began with three armed robbers who are killed during a heist. Their widows discover their plans for the robbery, and set out to finish the jobs themselves. The feature will follow the same basic premise. »


- C. Molly Smith

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An Intimate Conversation With Mike Nichols

20 November 2014 2:52 PM, PST

Two years ago, on the eve of his eagerly awaited Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman, I sat down with Mike Nichols to look back on his remarkable career. During those two-plus hours together at the Mark Hotel in Manhattan, the legendary director, then 80, reminisced about a life of highs and lows that began as a bright-eyed young boy who fled Nazi Germany for America. "I remember everything about getting on the boat in Germany in 1939," Nichols said. "I was 7, my brother was 3, and my father was already in New York setting up his practice as a doctor. German Jews couldn't leave the country, »


- Chris Nashawaty

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Director and star talk vampire film 'A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night'

20 November 2014 1:58 PM, PST

For her debut feature film, writer-director Ana Lily Amirpour decided to make a black-and-white, Iran-set, Farsi language vampire-western about a female, skateboarding neck-biter called A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. So, let's get the most obvious question out of the way first: Why? According to Amirpour, she came up with the idea for the movie (which opens in L.A. and New York tomorrow) when she was making a short film and saw someone walking by with a chador, the open cloak worn by many Iranian women. »


- Clark Collis

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Where to stream Mike Nichols' films

20 November 2014 1:51 PM, PST

Mike Nichols, a director with classic films like The Graduate and Working Girl to his name, has died at the age of 83—but his legacy lives on in his work, some of which is available to watch on sites like Netflix and Amazon. Here's a list of where you can watch Nichols' films, ranging from Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, his 1963 directing debut, to the more recent Charlie Wilson's War. »


- Ariana Bacle

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Dan Futterman remembers working with Mike Nichols on 'The Birdcage'

20 November 2014 1:48 PM, PST

After news broke of Mike Nichols' death, Dan Futterman called into EW Radio (SiriusXM 105) to talk about his memories of the beloved filmmaker. Futterman, who most recently wrote Foxcatcher, discussed his time working with Nichols on the set of The Birdcage, as well as some of his fondest personal memories. He told stories about Nichols calling him to show support for Futterman's film, Capote, and even mentioned a few of his own favorite Nichols films, including The Graduate and Who's Afraid of Virgina Woolf. Listen below. »


- Samantha Highfill

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Box office preview: 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay' is here

20 November 2014 1:28 PM, PST

The odds are definitely in The Hunger Games' favor this weekend: The third film in the trilogy is expected to surpass the $100 million mark at this weekend's box office, and will for sure take the No. 1 spot by a long shot. The first two Hunger Games films proved the franchises' ability to make big bank, with the first film making $152.5 million its first weekend and the second film, Catching Fire, grossing $158 million its opening weekend. This means this film is likely to follow in their footsteps, especially because it's the only wide release this weekend. »


- Ariana Bacle

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Breaking Big: Welcome to The Show, Chadwick Boseman

20 November 2014 9:00 AM, PST

"I don't know who he is... or where he is... but he's coming." —Branch Rickey (Harrison Ford) in 42 Jackie Robinson was already 28 when he made history, a grown man who'd struggled and thrived in relative anonymity before he was handpicked to be the first African-American player in modern baseball. Perhaps that's why Chadwick Boseman so ably tapped into his character in the film, 42—he possessed the same hunger, the same desire. For most of the moviegoing audience, Boseman was a promising rookie, an overnight success with a bright future. But the now-37-year-old actor had been a working actor for more than a decade, »


- Jeff Labrecque

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Remembering Mike Nichols, an ever-dexterous director

20 November 2014 8:25 AM, PST

Mike Nichols, a man known for his crackling wit as well as an Oscar-winning director who showed enormous versatility on stage and screen, died on Wednesday, Nov. 19 at age 83. Nichols was born Mikhail Igor Peschkowsky in Berlin, Germany. His family fled to the United States piecemeal—his father first, followed by Nichols and his brother, then finally their mother. He spent his adolescence in New York and fell into theater while attending the University of Chicago, where he first met Elaine May after she criticized his acting in a play. Together they formed the comedy duo Nichols and May, appearing »


- Keith Staskiewicz

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