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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.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2005 | Kevin Thomas, Times Staff Writer
In the live-action talking animal genre, "Racing Stripes" is no "Babe" but should delight youngsters, although parents likely will find it is sentimental in the extreme, with a plot that telegraphs every development. Efficiently directed, however, by Frederik Du Chau from David F. Schmidt's script, the film is populated with endearing animals that are expertly anthropomorphized and that are voiced by, among others, a sprinkling of famous names, including Dustin Hoffman, no less.
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.
BUSINESS
August 20, 2010 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
Hollywood is releasing a family comedy, a romantic comedy, a teen-targeted spoof, a cheesy 3-D thriller and an African American-targeted comedy this weekend. But more moviegoers may stick with the same old action heroes. Director and star Sylvester Stallone's "The Expendables" has the best chance to be No. 1 for the second weekend in a row, said people who have seen surveys of potential moviegoers. The aging-mercenaries tale is projected to sell $15 million to $17 million worth of tickets in the U.S. and Canada, down a little more than half from its strong opening weekend.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 26, 2011 | By Amy Kaufman, Los Angeles Times
Brad Pitt may be Hollywood royalty, but even he couldn't take down the king of the jungle at the box office. For the second consecutive weekend, a 3-D version of 1994's "The Lion King" sold more tickets than any other film in theaters, including the baseball drama "Moneyball," starring Pitt. Ticket sales for the re-release dropped only 27% to $22.1 million, bringing the movie's domestic tally to $61.7 million, according to an estimate from distributor Walt Disney Pictures. "Moneyball" still had a good weekend, debuting with a respectable $20.6 million.
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
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.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 23, 1999 | ERIC HARRISON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Bodily secretions and abused pooches aside, the most startling quality of "There's Something About Mary" was the way it married the romantic comedy genre to the teen gross-out movie. All of that raunchy stuff that had audiences either squirming or rolling in the aisles might've shook up the folks who flock to Meg Ryan movies, but it has long been the bread and butter of a certain kind of flick that caters to, shall we say, less delicate tastes.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 12, 2000 | KEVIN THOMAS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Based on Willie Morris' 1995 memoir, "My Dog Skip" is a standard-issue Hollywood family film about a boy and his dog growing up in a Southern small town during World War II. As such, it fills the bill without transcending it. It's a little too glossy, Skip a bit too much the trained performer--he's played by two perfectly matched Jack Russell terriers--and William Ross' omnipresent score far too syrupy and trite.
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