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Jessica Lange Set For Santa Barbara Film Fest Honor

2 hours ago

The actress who went from reclining in King Kong’s hand to creeping us out on American Horror Story, picking up a pair of Oscars along the way, will be feted this fall by the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Organizers said today that Jessica Lange will receive the ninth annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film during a black-tie gala on November 16 in Santa Barbara. Presenters will be revealed in the coming months. Here’s the release: Santa Barbara, CA – The Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s ninth annual Kirk Douglas Award For Excellence In Film will be presented […] »


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The Boy Who Lived: Warner Bros Sets Harry Potter Global Development Team

5 hours ago

Harry Potter is also known as “the boy who lived” — and Warner Bros wants to keep it that way. The studio, which has been behind the franchise from the start way back in 2001, has now created a dedicated team to oversee its ongoing relationship with Potter creator Jk Rowling. The Harry Potter Global Franchise Development team will be based in London and Burbank, and will help foster the studio’s expanded creative partnership with Rowling. Warner UK, Ireland and Spain President and Managing Director Josh Berger will add the title of President of Hpgfd to his current role. The […] »


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Katie Holmes Options Mother-Daughter Tale ‘All We Had’

5 hours ago

Katie Holmes has just optioned first- time author and full time artist Annie Weatherwax’s first novel, All We Had, and will develop it as a vehicle for herself. The book will be released on August 5. The story focuses on a mother and daughter who have nothing in their lives except each other. The mother sacrifices all for her daughter’s well-being and the chance for her to get into a great East Coast College to have a better life than she did. ICM PartnersEsther Newberg repped both of them in the deal. »


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So Who Comic-Conquered San Diego?

11 hours ago

The fanboy Super Bowl is over. Who made the most of San Diego Comic-Con and who spit the bit? Here’s the view from Deadline staffers who endured endless movie and TV show presentations. We’ll start with features: Warner Bros: Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, Mad Max: Fury Road, Jupiter Ascending, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies The best Comic-Con panels show fans things they’ve never seen before. From that standpoint, Warner Bros changed the game by making the Hall H experience seem larger. It turned the dark curtains covering 450 feet down the sides of the auditorium into […] »


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Giancarlo Esposito Joins Musical Drama ‘Stuck’; Rom-Com ‘Temps’ Sets Leads

15 hours ago

Giancarlo Esposito has joined the cast of NYC-set musical drama Stuck, about six strangers trapped on a stalled subway train. Filming is underway with a cast that includes Amy Madigan and singer-actress Ashanti. Esposito will play Lloyd, a mysterious homeless man who might offer more wisdom than expected. Stuck is adapted from the stage play by Riley Thomas, who co-scripted with director Michael Berry; the helmer is set to release his drama Frontera, also co-starring Madigan alongside Ed Harris, Eva Longoria, and Michael Peña, this month. Esposito starred on the recent NBC series Revolution and was just announced as joining […] »


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‘Matilda’s Oona Laurence Joins Ross Partridge & Jess Weixler In ‘Lamb’

16 hours ago

Exclusive: Eleven-year-old actress Oona Laurence, who received a special Tony honor last year for her Broadway run in Matilda, has joined indie drama Lamb. Ross Partridge (The Off Hours, Baghead) writes, directs, and stars in the film as David Lamb, a man on a mission of self-discovery after the disintegration of his marriage and the death of his father. He road trips from Chicago to the Rockies with awkward and unpopular 11-year-old Tommie (Laurence), determined to help her avoid a destiny of apathy and emptiness. Jess Weixler (The Disappearance Of Eleanor Rigby) also stars in the adaptation of Bonnie Nadzam’s […] »


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Oscar Winner James L. Brooks Inks With Wme

16 hours ago

James L Brooks, who created iconic TV series including The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Taxi and The Simpsons and who three Oscars as writer, director and producer of Terms Of Endearment, has inked with Wme. The 20-time Emmy winner is founder of Simpsons producer Gracie Films and has 10 Academy Award nominations overall including for writing and producing Broadcast News (1987), producing Jerry Maguire (1996) and producing and co-writing As Good As It Gets (1997). He will continue to be represented by Sam Fischer at Ziffren Brittenham. Wme also recently signed writer-producers Ian Goldberg (Once Upon A Time) and Patrick […] »


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Warner Bros’ New Franchise Play: ‘Dragonriders of Pern’ Book Series

16 hours ago

Harry Potter, The Hobbit and now … Dragonriders Of Pern? On an endless search to find big-scale fantasy books that lend themselves to global franchises, Warner Bros has optioned the Pern book series from the estate of American-Irish author Anne McCaffrey. There is a lot to work with here, with 22 volumes that make it one of the biggest selling sci-fi series ever. The first book was published in 1968, and the focus is on an elite group of warriors who take to the skies on the backs of giant, fire-breathing dragons with telepathic powers. They try to save the […] »


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Jack Kirby Heirs Blast “Indefensible” Marvel Over Scotus Copyright Petition

18 hours ago

To quote the Thing from the Fantastic Four – “It’s clobberin time!” Just two days after Jack Kirby was honored at Comic-Con, lawyers for the heirs of the comic legend have replied to Marvel and Disney with a pummeling brief filed at the Supreme Court. “Respondents, although called to respond, do not address the legal issues. Instead, they focus on the wrong questions and the wrong court,” say lawyer Marc Toberoff and Tom Goldstein, a new attorney on the case, today. After failing repeatedly in lower courts, Lisa Kirby, Neal Kirby, Susan Kirby and Barbara Kirby petitioned the High Court on March 21 for a hearing. The heirs want Scotus to rule […] »


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California Democrats Urge Passage Of State Film & TV Tax Incentives

19 hours ago

Stating that “the future of California’s creative culture and economy depends on it,” 28 members of the California Democratic congressional delegation weighed in on runaway production, urging the state legislature to approve, and Gov. Jerry Brown to sign, an enhanced tax credit to keep film and TV production from fleeing the state. “We fear a day, not too far off, when the film industry in California is hollowed out and it becomes easier to produce a movie or television show in New York or Louisiana than in California,” the delegation said in a statement sent to California Senate President pro […] »


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IFC Midnight Takes Possession Of ‘Inner Demons’

19 hours ago

Genre label IFC Midnight has acquired U.S. rights to Inner Demons, a possession tale about an Intervention-style reality TV crew filming a 16-year-old (Lara Vosburgh) fighting addiction who actually might be possessed by a demon. Director Seth Grossman has some expertise in the area; he was a producer on A&E’s popular series Intervention. Morgan McClellan, Colleen McGrann, Kate Whitney and Brian Flaherty also star in the pic scripted by Glenn Gers and produced by Robin Schorr, which premiered at the La Film Festival in June. Arianna Bocco and Sean Berney negotiated the deal for Sundance Selects/IFC Films with Josh Braun […] »


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Update: SEC Investigating DreamWorks Animation Writedown On ‘Turbo’; Shares Fall After Q2 Earnings Miss

19 hours ago

Update: DreamWorks Animation just disclosed the SEC investigation in its conference call with analysts and says it’s cooperating. The company took a $13.5M writedown on Turbo in February. Dwa told analysts that it won’t comment further on the matter. Shares were down 8.2% after the news; if that holds tomorrow then it would be a 52-week low. Separately, CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg declined to comment on the potential impact on his company if its distributor, Fox, acquires Time Warner. “Honestly, it’s way above my pay grade,” he says. Dwa said that it has bought from Paramount distribution rights to its feature films prior to 2013. They’ll […] »


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Cinedigm, Great Point Media Pact On 8-Film Genre Distro Deal

19 hours ago

Independent distributor Cinedigm has agreed to distribute an octet of new cast-driven sci-fi and thriller features from Robert Halmi Jr.’s Great Point Media in a new multi-picture partnership between the companies. Cinedigm will take all U.S. rights to the films including theatrical, digital, VOD, home entertainment, and TV in addition to having first look rights to Great Point Media’s development line-up. First pair of features are slated for late 2014. Emmy and Golden Globe-winning producer Halmi has over three decades of film and TV under his belt, including genre titles Dinotopia, Arabian Nights, The 10th Kingdom, Cleopatra, Alice in Wonderland, […] »


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Spanish Oscar Winners Decry Israeli Occupation Of Gaza; Courageous Or Catastrophic?

19 hours ago

The Gaza conflict touched the film business this month when dealmakers and filmmakers ran for a bomb shelter as shelling got too close at the Jerusalem Film Festival, and when Israeli filmmakers Ronit Elkabetz, Keren Yedaya, and Shlomi Elkabetz urged their government to seek a truce with Hamas. The attention on the world stage spiked today when Spanish Oscar winners Pedro Almodovar, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz put signatures to a statement expressing outrage over “the genocide perpetrated by the Israeli occupation army in the Gaza Strip against Palestinian civilians.” Stars who take political positions on world issues do so […] »


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‘Straight Outta Compton’ Rounds Out Its N.W.A Cast

21 hours ago

Universal and director F. Gary Gray have found their Mc Ren and DJ Yella, adding two more thesps who’ll portray core members of rising 1980s gangsta rap group N.W.A in biopic Straight Outta Compton. Turn‘s Aldis Hodge will play Mc Ren aka Lorenzo Jerald Patterson, and The Walking Dead‘s Neil Brown Jr will play DJ Yella aka Antoine Carraby alongside O’Shea Jackson Jr, Corey Hawkins and Jason Mitchell as Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Eazy-e. Straight Outta Compton chronicles the meteoric rise and fall of the seminal group, which burst from the streets of Compton, CA, with aggressive beats and […] »


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Hot Trailer: ‘The Maze Runner’

22 hours ago

20th Century Fox unveiled new footage and cast at Comic-Con on Friday for The Maze Runner, which bows September 19. It’s based on James Dashner’s bestselling Ya novel about youngsters marooned on a maze-ridden island. Wes Ball directed and Dylan O’Brien, Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario, Thomas Brodie Sangster and Aml Ameen star. Noah Oppenheim, Grant Myers and T.S. Nowlin adapted the book. The pic had been set for a February 2014 release but it was pushed back. That shouldn’t be an indication of unhappiness though — Fox already exercised the option to buy The Scorch Trials, the second book in […] »


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Kino Lorber Acquires Award-Winning Himmler Docu ‘The Decent One’ & Lit Adaptation ‘Winter In The Blood’

23 hours ago

Kino Lorber has acquired all U.S. rights to The Decent One, the pic that just won the Best Documentary award at the 2014 Jerusalem Film Festival. That’s the fest that was impacted by war itself this month, with attendees rushed into bomb shelter as rockets soared and troops began moving on the ground in the ongoing clash between Israel and Hamas. Decent One, directed by Vanessa Lapa, premiered in Berlin this year and reveals the secret personal writings and photographs from the private life of Nazi SS Commander Heinrich Himmler, providing an authentic account of the reality of Nazi Germany […] »


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Toronto Adds Kevin Smith’s ‘Tusk’, Frederick Wiseman & Ethan Hawke Docus; Vanguard & Midnight Madness Lineups

23 hours ago

Updated: The Toronto Film Festival announced several additions to the 2014 lineup this morning including the documentary pics and the lineups for The Masters, Vanguard and Midnight Madness. The docu lineup features pioneers of Base jumping in Sunshine Superman; Los Angeles sex workers in Tales Of The Grim Sleeper; survivors of the Indonesian genocide in The Look Of Silence; and, in Red Army, a hockey captain’s transition from national hero to political enemy during the rise and fall of the Soviet game. The Midnight Madness section includes the world premiere of Kevin Smith’s Tusk, the wacky horror thriller that dropped its […] »


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R.I.P. Margot Adler, Singular Voice Of Public Radio

23 hours ago

National Public Radio on Tuesday morning confirmed the death Margot Adler, a signature voice on NPR for more than three decades. She died July 28 at her home in New York City. She was 68 and had been battling cancer, according to the public radio consortium. A granddaughter of famed Viennese psychiatrist Alfred Adler, Margot Adler was a journalistic polymath who joined NPR in 1979 as a general assignment reporter. Her stories, invariably suffused with a humanist bent, ranged from the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic to confrontations involving the Ku Klux Klan in Greensboro, N.C., to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. […] »


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Salman Khan’s ‘Kick’ Packs Bollywood Punch; But Falls Short Of All-Time Records… So Far

29 July 2014 4:33 AM, PDT

At 48 and with more than 80 films under his belt, Bollywood superstar Salman Khan is one of Indian cinema’s biggest draws. He shares A-List status with a group that includes Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Akshay Kumar, Ranbir Kapoor and Hrithik Roshan. Working in an industry whose box office is up to 90% driven by local movies, they have a rabid fanbase. And that spreads throughout the diaspora, making it a global event each time one of their films is released. Khan just returned to the Eid al Fitr holiday season with Kick, an action romance thriller released by […] »


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