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Japan Box Office: ‘Sword Art Online’ Bows at Number One

1 hour ago

Sword Art Online the Movie: Ordinal Scale,” an animation based on Reki Kawahara’s so-called light novel series that has sold 19 million copies and spawned TV anime shows, comics and games, bowed at number one at the Japanese box office for the Feb. 18-19 weekend.

The film, about players of a hit game whose augmented reality technology blurs the lines between the digital and real worlds, earned $3.76 million on 308,000 admissions for its opening frame. Distributed by Sony Music’s Aniplex unit, the film is expected to finish above the $25 million mark.

Also debuting last weekend was the teen romantic drama “One Week Friends,” which landed at number three. Based on a best-selling comic by Matcha Hazuki, the film made $1.35 million, with Shochiku distributing.

Last week’s number one, Toei’s cop buddy film “Partners: The Movie IV,” slipped to second, with $2.0 million.

Related storiesKorea Box Office: 'New Trial' Tops Weekend »


- Mark Schilling

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Korea Box Office: ‘New Trial’ Tops Weekend Chart

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Opening on Wednesday, Opus Pictures’ “New Trial” debuted on top of the South Korean box office. The crime drama scored $7.3 million from 1 million admissions over five days, accounting for 34% of the total weekend box office.

Based on a true murder case in South Korea in 2000, “Trial” is the story of a boy who serves 10 years in prison for murder, and of a young attorney who tries to prove his innocence.

Cj Entertainment’s “Fabricated City” slipped to second, earning $3.4 million between Friday and Sunday. It has made $13.9 million since its Feb. 9 release.

Upi’s “The Great Wall” debuted in third. It earned $2.88 million between Wednesday and Sunday.

Cj’s “Confidential Assignment” took fourth, with a week-on-week drop of 65%. The action drama earned $1.42 million between Friday and Sunday for a total of $54.5 million after five weekends.

DreamWorks’ “Trolls,” locally distributed by Cj, landed in fifth. It earned $1.42 million between Thursday and Sunday. »


- Sonia Kil

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Berlinale: Carlos Reygadas Stars in His New Film, ‘Where Life Is Born’ (Exclusive)

3 hours ago

The star of “Where Life is Born,” the next and highly-anticipated movie by Mexico’s Carlos Reygadas, will be Carlos Reygadas himself. Move marks a logical departure for one of Latin America’s most celebrated and influential directors, whose last movie, “Post Tenebras Lux,” mixed personal reference – the English rugby scenes, for instance – and a broader reflection on the emotional alienation of the developed world.

Reygadas may well be expanding on this theme in “Where Life is Born” where Reygadas plays a husband, Juan, in a couple who have an open relationship. Yet when his wife Ester falls in love with another man, her husband Juan struggles to meet the expectations he has of himself.

Lead-produced by Jaime Romandia’s Mantarraya Producciones, “When Life is Born” is set in a traditional world of bullfighting ranches in the Mexican state of Tlaxcala. Film’s sales agent The Match Factory describes “Where Life Is Born »


- John Hopewell

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Brazil’s Karim Aïnouz Moves Forward on Five Feature Slate (Exclusive)

4 hours ago

Berlin-based director Karim Aïnouz, a driving force in Brazil’s cinema build, has set a slate of projects to be produced, among others, by director Walter Salles (“The Motorcycle Diaries”) and Brazil’s two most prominent producers, Rodrigo Teixeira (“Call Me By Your Name,” “Patti Cake$”) and Fabiano Gullane (“The Second Mother”).

Director of 2014 Berlin competition player “Futuro Beach,” Aïnouz is also planning also to co-direct a movie with Marcelo Gomes, whose “Joaquim” world premiered in Berlin competition last week. Aïnouz is already in production on a documentary for Arte.

Though totally disparate in film type, the five movies show a common preoccupation: To map out the revolutionary forces, for good and bad, shaping Aïnouz and forging the contemporary world.

Reuniting Aïnouz and Gomes, “Clandestinos” underscores a sense of urgency running through most of Aïnouz’s projects. The directors’ prior film together, 2009’s “I Travel Because I Have To, I »


- John Hopewell

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Beatriz Setuain Named Director of Mediapro Distribution Arm Imagina International Sales

6 hours ago

Beatriz Setuain, a well-regarded Spanish sales executive, has been named director of Imagina International Sales, the overseas distribution arm of the Mediapro Group, one of the biggest independent TV companies based out of southern Europe.

She replaces Laura Miñarro, appointed early February as director of co-productions and scripted content at international distributor Eccho Rights.

Previously serving as Iis sales manager, Setuain returned to the company in 2016 after heading up international sales at Lagardere Studios’ Madrid-based Boomerang TV. She had been head of Iis cinema division for over 2008-2013 and a member of the sales team at Prisa-owned Sogepaq, a breeding ground for now top Spanish executives,  from 2002 to 2007.

Setuain will report to Laura Fernandez Espeso, director of international content at Mediapro.

As part of a Iis management team reorganization, executive Esther Agraso has also been promoted to head of sales.

Both executives’ promotions form part of a Mediapro’s strategy, »


- Emiliano De Pablos and Jamie Lang

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‘Hacksaw Ridge,’ ‘La La Land,’ ‘Westworld’ Win Golden Reel Sound Editing Awards

8 hours ago

Mel Gibson’s World War II drama “Hacksaw Ridge” claimed top honors at the Motion Picture Sound Editors’ (Mpse) 64th annual Golden Reel Awards Sunday night. The film won in both the FX/Foley and Dialogue/Adr categories. “La La Land” won in the musical field.

Awards also went to “Warcraft: The Beginning” and “Moana,” among others.

Related

La La Land,’ ‘Game of Thrones’ Win Cinema Audio Society Awards

On the television side, “Westworld” won prizes in both the short form and long form categories. “Penny Dreadful,” “The Night Of” and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again” were also recognized.

Guillermo del Toro received the organization’s Filmmaker Award, while sound editor Harry Cohen (“Kill Bill,” “Blood Diamond,” “Lone Survivor”) accepted a career achievement honor.

Hacksaw Ridge” and “La La Land” are Oscar-nominated for best sound editing this year along with “Arrival,” “Hacksaw Ridge” and “Sully. »


- Kristopher Tapley

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‘La La Land,’ ‘Suicide Squad,’ ‘Westworld’ Win Make-Up and Hair Styling Awards

9 hours ago

Nocturnal Animals,” “La La Land,” “Suicide Squad,” “Hail, Caesar!” and “Star Trek Beyond” all earned trophies from the Make-Up and Hair Stylings Guild at the org’s fourth annual awards ceremony.

Westworld,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Game of Thrones” and “The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story” won in the television categories.

Ryan Murphy (“Feud,” “American Crime Story,” “American Horror Story”) received the guild’s Distinguished Artisan Award, while makeup artist Leonard Engelman and hairstylist Barbara Lorenz picked up lifetime achievement honors.

The ceremony was held at The Novo by Microsoft at L.A. Live. Comedian Loni Love hosted for the second year in a row.

This year’s Oscar nominees for makeup and hairstyling are “A Man Called Ove,” “Star Trek Beyond” and “Suicide Squad.” Last year’s Emmy winners in makeup categories were “American Horror Story: Hotel,” “Game of Thrones” and “Key & Peele.”

Full list of winners below. »


- Kristopher Tapley

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Oliver Stone Gives Impassioned Speech at WGA Awards: It’s Not Just Trump, ‘But a System’

10 hours ago

The Writers Guild Awards on Sunday night took a cue from the rest of awards season in being fairly Trump-heavy, including several shots at the commander-in-chief. But Oliver Stone, who was on hand at the Wgaw ceremony to accept the Laurel Award, gave a more bipartisan critique of America in an impassioned message to young filmmakers.

After being introduced by James Wood, Stone told reminded filmmakers that “you can be critical of your government and your society.”

“You don’t have to fit in,” the Oscar-winner went on. “It’s fashionable now to take shots at Republicans and Trump and avoid the Obamas and Clintons. But remember this: In the 13 wars we’ve started over the last 30 years and the $14 trillion we’ve spent, and the hundreds of thousands of lives that have perished from this earth, remember that it wasn’t one leader, but a system, both Republican and Democrat. »


- Alex Stedman and Debra Birnbaum

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John Waters Lauded at Writers Guild Awards for ‘A Lifetime of Penning Trashy Screenplays’

11 hours ago

John Waters and his fight for the right to be trashy on film was celebrated with gusto on Sunday at the New York edition of the Writers Guild Awards ceremony.

Waters got two standing ovations for his legacy in battling film censors and going it alone as an independent filmmaker out of Baltimore in the 1970s. Waters reveled in the applause and the appreciation, telling the crowd at the Edison Ballroom that he has always thought of himself, first and foremost, as a writer.

“Every single weekday I get up at 6 a.m. and go into my writing room and think up something f—– up,” Waters said. “In the afternoon I go try and sell it. Isn’t that what all writers do?”

Preaching to the choir, Waters added: “Writing is the only part of filmmaking I really love.”

Waters couldn’t resist the platform to remind the room of »


- Cynthia Littleton

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Richard Schickel, Influential Time Magazine Film Critic, Dies at 84

13 hours ago

Richard Schickel, the longtime film critic for Time magazine who also wrote 37 books, mostly on film, and directed a number of documentaries on film subjects, died on Saturday in Los Angeles of complications from a series of strokes, his family told the Los Angeles Times. He was 84.

“He was one of the fathers of American film criticism,” his daughter, writer Erika Schickel, told the Times. “He had a singular voice. When he wrote or spoke, he had an old-fashioned way of turning a phrase. He was blunt and succinct both on the page and in life.”

He wrote and/or directed more than 30 documentaries, mostly for television.

Schickel shared a 1977 Emmy nomination for the documentary “Life Goes to the Movies” and received two nominations in 1987 for the documentary “Minnelli on Minnelli: Liza Remembers Vincente,” which he directed.

Schickel wrote film reviews for Life magazine from 1965 until the magazine folded in »


- Carmel Dagan

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