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ENTERTAINMENT
July 11, 2013 | By Julie Makinen
BEIJING -- “Transcendence,” the upcoming Johnny Depp sci-fi film directed by Christopher Nolan's longtime cinematographer Wally Pfister, will get a boost in China from DMG Entertainment, the Beijing-based company that helped add Chinese elements to “Iron Man 3” and “Looper.” But don't look for any extra China-specific footage in the 2014 film. DMG said Thursday it had partnered with Alcon Entertainment to help finance, produce and distribute the movie in China, which is now filming stateside and will be released in the U.S. by Warner Bros.
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ENTERTAINMENT
December 12, 2003 | Kevin Thomas, Times Staff Writer
"Love Don't Cost a Thing" finds earnest high school senior Alvin Johnson (Nick Cannon) on his pool-cleaning job when he locks eyes with beautiful Paris Morgan (Christina Milian), the most popular girl in school, during a party at her upscale home. It's not just a matter of natural attraction on Alvin's part but that Paris represents everything Alvin lacks and longs for.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 28, 2013 | By Nicole Sperling
Johnny Depp will next be seen in Disney's "The Lone Ranger" this summer but after that it looks like he's giving popcorn flicks a rest. The Oscar-nominated actor, who became a giant movie star when he first stole the show as Jack Sparrow in 2003's "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl," announced Wednesday that he was committing to two new movies this year that are decidedly different than his most recent work. First up is Wally Phister's directorial debut "Transcendence," a hush-hush project being shuttled through Warner Bros.
BUSINESS
April 20, 2007 | Lorenza Munoz, Times Staff Writer
Two film veterans have become the latest Hollywood players to tap into the gusher of money Wall Street is putting into the movie business by arranging a $1-billion credit line. Patrick Wachsberger, chief executive of foreign sales and distribution company Summit Entertainment, and Robert Friedman, former head of marketing and distribution for Paramount Pictures Motion Picture Group, aim to use the money from Merrill Lynch & Co.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 24, 2009 | By PATRICK GOLDSTEIN
John Lee Hancock thought he was doing a great job of racing through a day of shooting earlier this year on "The Blind Side," the new film that stars Sandra Bullock as Leigh Anne Tuohy, a no-nonsense Memphis supermom who makes room in her life for Michael Oher, a homeless, 350-pound African American teenager who ended up becoming the Baltimore Ravens' first-round pick in this year's NFL draft. But when the real Leigh Anne showed up to visit the set, she found her patience flagging after a few hours.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 10, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
If you're suffering Hollywood career doubts and need a little advice, there are worse people you could turn to than Christopher Nolan. That's the situation Oscar-winning cinematographer Wally Pfister found himself in several years ago when he debated making the high-concept science-fiction film "Transcendence" his directorial debut. Pfister had shot all but one of Nolan's movies and had worked closely with the helmer on his superhero tentpoles. But Pfister wasn't convinced that this script, with its big ideas and action pieces and a budget that would eventually approach $100 million, was the right fit for him. "I told Chris, 'I think it's a good project.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2011 | By Rebecca Keegan, Los Angeles Times
As founder, chairman and chief executive of National Research Group Inc. from 1978 to 2003, movie market researcher Joseph Farrell introduced the concept of market testing to Hollywood, originating now-standard industry practices such as audience tracking surveys, focus-group preview screenings and demographic analysis of moviegoers. Over the decades, NRG's confidential research reports were used by all of the major Hollywood studios to make decisions about release dates, tweak marketing campaigns and — sometimes to the unease of filmmakers — tinker with movies.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 21, 2012 | By John Horn, Los Angeles Times
The box-office debut of"Battleship" - an attempt to transform the kids' strategy pastime into a summer blockbuster - looked like a very different board game over the weekend: Trouble. Universal Pictures' $209-million alien invasion spectacle fizzled badly in its domestic premiere, grossing just $25.3 million and finishing a distant second to the third weekend of Disney's "The Avengers," according to Sunday estimates. The debut of "Battleship" - whose ticket sales were about 40% lower than some predictions - was even worse than the $30.2-million March opening of"John Carter,"one of the biggest fiascoes in Hollywood history, and the film's audience was surprisingly old. "I'm hugely disappointed in this opening," said Nikki Rocco, Universal's president of domestic distribution, who added that the film's respectable international numbers will soften the domestic blow.
BUSINESS
November 30, 2009 | By Ben Fritz
It wasn't new and it wasn't in first place, but all eyes were on "The Blind Side" this weekend. Alcon Entertainment's uplifting football drama starring Sandra Bullock pulled off the rare feat of increasing ticket sales on its second weekend in wide release, nearly pulling off an upset and eclipsing "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" to become No. 1. It was an unusual weekend all around at the box office, as none of the three new nationwide motion...
ENTERTAINMENT
April 14, 2009 | PATRICK GOLDSTEIN
Michael Lewis' 2006 book "The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game" is a riveting, often heart-wrenching story of Michael Oher, a 6-foot-5, 350-pound African American teenager who is transformed from a homeless vagabond to a star football player, largely thanks to Leigh Anne Tuohy, a dynamic evangelical Christian who helps provide him with a surrogate family and a shot at success in life. When Allen Barra reviewed the book for the Washington Post, he was full of admiration for Lewis' writerly skills.
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