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ENTERTAINMENT
March 10, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
With its multidisciplinary mix of movies, music and technology, the South by Southwest festival has a reputation as a hip, forward-looking affair. But one of the unofficial themes to emerge at this year's SXSW Film Festival, which kicked off Friday, is revisiting roots. Here are four movies - and one famous actor - making the old-school new again. "Chef" undercooked?  Jon Favreau's new culinary comedy "Chef" marks a return to indie filmmaking for the writer, director and actor, who first made a name for himself with "Swingers" in 1996 but in recent years has turned out large, effects-driven Hollywood movies such as "Iron Man," "Iron Man 2" and "Cowboys & Aliens.
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HEALTH
March 7, 2014 | By James S. Fell
After the film "300" hit the screen in 2006, Google trends showed a threefold increase in searches for "six-pack abs. " And every magazine with the word "muscle" in its title shared a version of a "Secrets of the '300'" workout. But there are no secrets to seeing your abs. Methods vary, but they sum up as: Train hard. Eat fewer calories than you burn. The end. The sequel, "300: Rise of an Empire," is now in theaters, and the actors recently gathered at a Century City hotel to talk about their physical transformation from ordinary humans to chiseled glory.
NEWS
March 7, 2014 | By Patt Morrison
After last week's storms, the biggest deluge around is the onscreen one that puts Noah and a worldful of other creatures aboard an ark. Darren Aronofsky's Biblical blockbuster “Noah” launches at the end of this month, and the inundation of ads and trailers will now include this disclaime r, described by Paramount as an “explanatory message”: “The film is inspired by the story of Noah. While artistic license has been taken, we believe that this film is true to the essence, values and integrity of a story that is a cornerstone of faith for millions of people worldwide.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Martin Tsai
Hong Kong filmmakers have tried - and largely failed - to duplicate the success of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," so more appear to be looking to thriving film industries in Japan and South Korea for inspiration. The Donnie Yen vehicle "Special ID" supplies the proof. Director Clarence Fok Yiu-leung has here co-opted South Korea's messy fight choreography as seen in the noted 2003 thriller "Oldboy" as well as the cartoonish, multi-culti lowlifes that populate the bulk of Japanese filmmaker Takashi Miike's canon.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Richard Verrier
A new report from FilmL.A. provides further evidence that California is rapidly losing its share of big budget feature films to rival states and countries. Last year, only two of the top 25 big-budget movies, whose combined budgets totaled more than $3.5 billion, filmed primarily in California: "The Hangover Part III" and "Star Trek: Into Darkness," according to a report released Thursday morning by FilmL.A. That's a sharp decline from 15 years ago, when 16 of the top 25 live-action movies at the box office were filmed in California, the report states.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Richard Verrier
In a further sign of film's exit from the Hollywood stage, the post-production company Deluxe said it was closing its local film laboratory. In a letter to customers, Warren Stein, chief operating officer of Deluxe Laboratories, said the Hollywood film processing facility will close May 9. "The capture and exhibition of motion pictures has transitioned from film to digital in recent years," Stein said in the letter obtained by The Times....
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Rebecca Keegan
Tuna, a Chiweenie with an overbite and more than 700,000 followers on Instagram, was there. So were Lassie, Rin Tin Tin, Beethoven, Marley, Toto and several other dogs of renown. The canine A-list had gathered in Hollywood in February to celebrate one of their own. Yes, they had also come because their trainers were tossing bits of hot dog onto the red carpet, but really, the main attraction was Mr. Peabody, the hyper-intelligent, time-traveling beagle from the 1960s cartoon shorts "Peabody's Improbable History," who was getting his paw prints enshrined at the TCL Chinese Theatre.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 6, 2014 | By Jevon Phillips
Proving that maybe the tastes of MTV are not so different from those of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, three Oscar-nominated films -- "12 Years a Slave," "American Hustle" and "The Wolf of Wall Street" -- are among the movie of the year nominees for the 2014 MTV Movie Awards. The male and female performance categories also echo the academy's choices as Sandra Bullock ("Gravity"), Amy Adams ("American Hustle"), Bradley Cooper ("American Hustle"), Leonardo DiCaprio ("The Wolf of Wall Stre et ")
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
Conan O'Brien will host the youthful, pop-oriented MTV Movie Awards for the first time on April 13 at the Nokia Theatre, the late-night host announced on "Conan" on Tuesday. At 50, he is the oldest performer ever to host the show, which tends to favor twenty- and thirty-something comedians for its podium gigs. O'Brien is a seasoned awards show emcee, having hosted the Emmys in 2002, 2003 (as a co-host) and 2006. He could lend a bit of legitimacy to an MTV event that previous hosts such as Rebel Wilson (2013)
ENTERTAINMENT
March 5, 2014 | By Lorraine Ali
Hany Abu-Assad should be used to the tension by now. The Palestinian director has shot most of his films ("Paradise Now," "Rana's Wedding") in a region known far more for its conflict than its cinema, and his story lines often take place in between tangles of barbed wire and crowded checkpoints. But filming "Omar" on the West Bank and in his hometown of Nazareth almost proved too much - even for Abu-Assad. "At the end of the shoot, I told everybody, 'I'm not going to make another movie,'" said the director.
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