May 25, 2010 |
Focus Features remains one of the rare specialty film companies tied to a major studio. And at the moment, it has more to brag about than its parent Universal Pictures. Focus celebrated Mother's Day with the better-than-expected debut of its feel-good documentary "Babies," which chronicles the lives of four infants around the world from birth to first steps. The movie company, known for such unconventional hits as "Brokeback Mountain" and "Lost in Translation," also has one of the most anticipated independent movies of the summer coming July 7, the family comedy-drama "The Kids Are All Right" starring Annette Bening and Julianne Moore as a lesbian couple whose two teenage kids seek out their sperm donor.
March 12, 2013 |
One story depicts girls coming of age in India. Another follows a group of seniors as they compete in an international pingpong championship in Mongolia. Closer to home is the portrait of local priest Father Greg Boyle and his work with ex-gang members. Then there's a look at "fruit detectives" from around the world in search of exotic varieties. Those are among eight documentaries that will be shown on designated nights at two dozen theaters nationwide this spring as part of the Docurama series.
January 31, 2007 |
JOHN SLOSS has been called independent filmmaking's consigliere. He's part lawyer, part salesman, part problem-solver who became an avid film buff watching a movie a day as a projectionist and usher while attending the University of Michigan. Honored films he's been involved with include "Boys Don't Cry," which won Hilary Swank her first acting Academy Award, best documentary Oscar winner "The Fog of War" and current best picture nominee "Little Miss Sunshine."
June 20, 2011 |
"The Art of Getting By," about a high school slacker more interested in a girl than in his homework, barely lived up to its name this weekend at the box office. The film, which stars young actors Freddie Highmore and Emma Roberts, had what even distributor Fox Searchlight acknowledged was a "disappointing" opening. According to a studio estimate, the movie collected only $700,000 from 610 theaters for a dismal per-theater average of $1,148. "The Art of Getting By" — previously titled "Homework" when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January — did worse than two other independent movies that opened this weekend and also played at the Utah event.
May 1, 2011
With such actors as Will Ferrell and Ewan McGregor and themes that take on the Holocaust and life on another planet, this summer's independent movies don't skimp on story or star power. Here, some of the select films that will go up against the big studio blockbusters in a battle for the box office and jockey each other for early Oscar attention. "Everything Must Go" Will Ferrell is no laughing matter as an alcoholic bottoming out in writer-director Dan Rush's feature debut, adapted from a Raymond Carver short story.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 14, 2011 |
Bert Schneider, the iconoclastic producer behind a trio of influential movies — "Easy Rider," "Five Easy Pieces" and "The Last Picture Show" — that captured the rootlessness and discontent of the late 1960s and '70s and became symbols of a new era in Hollywood, has died. He was 78. Schneider had been in failing health and died of natural causes Monday at Olympia Medical Center in Los Angeles, said his daughter, Audrey Simon. The son of a Hollywood power broker — his father, Abraham, ran Columbia Pictures in the late 1960s — Schneider helped revitalize moviemaking in the "New Hollywood" movement in which directors, not studios, held the creative reins and made movies that embraced the sensibilities of the emerging counterculture.