October 4, 2012 |
Hollywood continues to go crazy for toys and games. Hasbro, the company behind the hits "Transformers" and "G.I. Joe" and the flop "Battleship," has signed a deal with independent production and finance company Emmett/Furla Films to make movies based on the board games Hungry Hungry Hippos and Monopoly and the toy Action Man. Rhode Island-headquartered Hasbro, which has a film production office at the Universal Pictures lot, announced the...
July 7, 2012 |
As the giant spaceship crashes into the mysterious planet, the seats inside the movie theater heave back and forth and rumble like an earthquake. "Back ticklers" in the seats thump as an astronaut dodges fireballs and rolls on the ground. A strobe light flashes and huge fans expel gusts of air reeking of smoke and gunpowder. In the latest bid to attract moviegoers back to multiplexes, where 3-D -- featured in hits such as "The Avengers" and"Men in Black 3"-- is already the norm, technology and entertainment companies are pushing a new system known as 4-D. At the leading edge of the technology is South Korean conglomerate CJ Group, which operates Asia's largest theater chain and has set up a laboratory near Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood to demonstrate and market its 4DX system.
July 16, 2012 |
Seven years before she dazzled international audiences as the amoral Lulu in G.W. Pabst's 1929 German masterpiece "Pandora's Box," Louise Brooks was a willful, intelligent and beautiful 15-year-old girl living in Wichita, Kan. Summer 1922 changed Brooks' life. She left home accompanied by a provincial 36-year-old housewife named Alice Mills and traveled by train to New York City so she could attend the Denishawn school of modern dance run by Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn. Mills returned that summer to Wichita and vanished from the life of Brooks, who would shortly become one of the icons of the silent screen.
September 6, 2013 |
The world of competitive drag racing gets a sputtering, cliché-choked treatment in "Snake & Mongoose," an amateurish, haphazardly constructed indie biopic about longtime Southern California track rivals Don "Snake" Prudhomme and Tom "Mongoose" McEwen. The film was made in conjunction with the National Hot Rod Assn., and it shows, in the countless archival footage of races awkwardly crammed in between perfunctorily filmed off-track dialogue scenes that all look the same, no matter where or when they're taking place.
March 29, 2013 |
British actor Richard Griffiths, best known for playing muggle Uncle Vernon Dursley in the "Harry Potter" movies, has died. Griffiths died Thursday at University Hospital in Coventry, England, from complications following heart surgery, his agent, Simon Beresford, told the Associated Press. He was 65. Large in body and presence, Griffiths appeared in character roles in dozens of films and TV shows, but made his biggest mark as the boy wizard's grumpy uncle. PHOTOS: Richard Griffiths 1947-2013 "Harry Potter" star Daniel Radcliffe said Griffiths' true demeanor was far kinder.
December 15, 2011 |
The National Football League has signed record-setting television rights deals with Fox, NBC and CBS that will see the broadcast networks pay a total of nearly $28 billion in fees over nine years. That breaks down to an average of $3.1 billion a year, representing a 63% increase over the $1.9 billion paid annually by CBS, NBC and Fox for NFL football under their current contracts. The new accords, which take effect after the 2013 season and run through 2022, come just two months after the NFL signed an eight-year pact with Walt Disney Co.'s ESPN that boosted the cable sports network's average annual rights fee to $1.9 billion from $1.1 billion.
October 30, 2013 |
With this year's high-profile movies "The Butler," "42" and "12 Years a Slave" prominently featuring black actors, it may seem as though the multiplex is enjoying new levels of diversity. But popular films still under-represent minority characters and directors, and reflect certain biases in their portrayals, according to a study being released Wednesday by USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Researchers evaluated 500 top-grossing movies released at the U.S. box office between 2007 and 2012 and 20,000 speaking characters, finding patterns in the way different races, ethnicities and genders are depicted.
November 20, 2013 |
Director Alexander Payne was greeted like a hometown hero Saturday night -- more than 1,500 miles from his native Omaha. Nearly 300 actors, writers, producers, crew members and students crammed into the Sherry Lansing Theatre on the Paramount Studios lot for a Q&A and screening of Payne's newly released "Nebraska. " The Oscar-winning writer and director of "The Descendants," "Sideways" and "Election" was the guest speaker at the event, organized by the Nebraska Coast Connection, an unusual support group of Nebraskans who work in the film and TV industry.
December 31, 2012 |
On screen and off, Kerry Washington is a strong woman with strong convictions. Not only does she play the tough political crisis manager Olivia Pope on ABC's highly rated show "Scandal," she also commanded the national stage on the final night of the 2012 Democratic National Convention. So it's a bit incongruous to see Washington taking on a role like Broomhilda von Shaft - a plantation slave desperately in need of being rescued by her man - in "Django Unchained. " Washington, though, describes herself not just as a feminist but also a womanist - a term coined by Alice Walker to define black feminism.
November 24, 2010 |
For "Tangled," the studio's 50th feature-length cartoon, the team at Disney has taken a deep breath and tried to be all things to all animation-loving people. There are some hiccups along the way, but by the end there is success. Whether you like stirring adventure or sentimental romance, traditional fairy tales or stories of modern families, musicals or comedies, even blonds or brunets, "Tangled" has something for you. Sampling so many animation touchstones has its risks, but once "Tangled" calms down and accepts the essential sweetness of its better nature the rewards are clear.