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Film News Roundup: Maggie Gyllenhaal’s ‘Kindergarten Teacher’ Sells to Netflix

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 02:17
In today’s film news roundup, Netflix buys Maggie Gyllenhaal’s drama “The Kindergarten Teacher” and production starts on Mads Mikkelsen’s “Polar” and the horror film “irl.” ACQUISITION Netflix has bought North America rights to Maggie Gyllenhaal’s drama “The Kindergarten Teacher” a month after its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival. Sara Colangelo won Sundance’s directing award […]

Berlin Film Review: ‘Mug’

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 01:53
The asterisks would practically outnumber the alphabet if one were to quote the exact Metallica lyric that blares out intermittently during Malgorzata Szumowska’s “Mug.” Suffice to say, the song is “Hardwired,” and the cut concludes with a treble drumbeat underlining the sentiment “Hard-wired to self! de! struct!” At first it seems to be a choice […]

Richard Glickman, Engineer and Fog Machine Designer, Dies at 91

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 01:35
Richard Bruce Glickman, an expert in lighting for film, television, and stage and designer of the industry standard fog machine, died on Feb. 18 in Sherman Oaks, Calif. He was 91. He was born in New York in 1926 and his family moved to Los Angeles when he was a child. He received his Bachelor […]

Berlin Film Review: ‘Ága’

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 01:29
An older Inuit couple are the last members of their ethnic group living on the ice in Milko Lazarov’s handsome paean to a dying culture, “Ága.” Shooting in the Russian republic of Sakha, famed for having the northern hemisphere’s coldest climate, the director largely uses a fixed camera that firmly places his characters within their […]

Debate Rages Over Timing and Validity of ‘Shape of Water’ Plagiarism Claim Amid Oscar Voting

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 00:54
Plagiarism claims are a dime a dozen in Hollywood, but the case of Guillermo del Toro’s Oscar-contending film “The Shape of Water,” and a lawsuit alleging that it borrowed liberally from a nearly 50-year-old play, reminds that during awards season, the stakes always intensify. Some Academy voters question the timing of the suit, which was […]

‘This Is Me’ Catapults ‘Greatest Showman’ Soundtrack Toward One Billion Streams

Variety - Front Page - Sat, 02/24/2018 - 00:00
“This Is Me,” the showstopping number from original musical “The Greatest Showman,” is up for best original song at the upcoming Academy Awards and is propelling streams of the movie’s soundtrack as the March 4 broadcast inches closer. Atlantic Records, which released “The Greatest Showman” album, a companion of music from the film, announced that the […]

How Trump Beating Clinton Impacted the Gender Politics of ‘UnReal’ Season 3

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 23:58
“UnReal” returns this Monday, but the third season of the Lifetime drama wrapped shooting in mid-2017 — before the #MeToo movement began. And the storylines for the season were conceived in the fall of 2016 — before the presidential election. So, needless to say, things were much different. Season 3 of “UnReal,” Lifetime’s scripted satire […]

Twitter’s Annual Report Reveals That Its $70 Million SoundCloud Investment Was a Bust

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 23:33
Twitter’s lost almost all of the money it had invested in SoundCloud, the company disclosed as part of its annual report Friday. The company had to write off $66.4 million of $70 million it had invested into the music service in 2016, according to the filing. Twitter had been in on-and-off talks to acquire SoundClound […]

TV News Roundup: Al Pacino’s HBO Film ‘Paterno’ Releases Full Trailer, Premiere Date (Watch)

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 23:31
In today’s roundup, HBO Films announced the premiere date for “Paterno,” and VH1 released the cast for the 10th season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” DATES HBO Films will debut “Paterno” starring Al Pacino on April 7 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Pacino plays the titular role in a drama about Penn State’s Joe Paterno following the […]

Bon Iver’s Manager Announces Run for Congress in New ‘Wisconsin’ Video

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 23:15
Kyle Frenette, the longtime manager for Bon Iver, officially announced he’s running for Congress in a new video that features the folk group’s song “Wisconsin.” If he wins the Democratic primary in August, he would face incumbent Sean Duffy, a Republican who has held the seat since 2011 and, earlier in his career, appeared on […]

Rex Pickett’s Drama ‘Repairman’ Moving Forward as a Movie

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:44
Brian A. Metcalf (“Living Among Us”) has been set to direct the feature film “Repairman,” based on an original screenplay written by Rex Pickett, author of the novel “Sideways.” Pickett’s work has served as the basis for two Oscar-winning works. The screenplay for “Sideways” won the 2005 Academy Award for best adapted screenplay for Alexander […]

MoviePass Sues Subscription Rival Sinemia for Patent Infringement

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:35
MoviePass filed a patent infringement lawsuit Friday against Sinemia, alleging that its rival subscription service has stolen many of its key features. Both services allow customers to see movies in theaters in exchange for a discounted monthly fee. In the lawsuit, MoviePass accuses its rival of copying features of its mobile app that are the […]

Off Broadway Review: ‘Jerry Springer — The Opera’

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:32
In its day, now long-past, the”Jerry Springer Show” was an only-in-America phenomenon, so it’s only fitting that the British-made “Jerry Springer — The Opera” has finally come home to roost. Ostensibly a satire of that super-vulgar talk show and its uncouth participants, this Richard Thomas (music & lyrics) and Stewart Lee (book & additional lyrics) […]

Octavia Spencer, Isabela Moner Join Mark Wahlberg’s ‘Instant Family’

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:27
Octavia Spencer, Isabela Moner, Tig Notaro, Iliza Shlesinger, and Tom Segura have joined Mark Wahlberg and Rose Byrne in the Paramount comedy “Instant Family.” Wahlberg and Byrne will play a couple who decides to start a family and adopt through the foster-care system, only to find themselves raising three wild kids who have no interest in being […]

Nanette Fabray, TV Star of the ’50s and ’60s, Dies at 97

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:12
The exuberant, indefatigable actress-singer Nanette Fabray, a Tony and Emmy winner, a star of Vincente Minnelli’s golden-age musical “The Band Wagon” and a longtime presence on television, most notably on “The Hollywood Squares,” died Thursday at her Palos Verdes, Calif., home, according to the New York Times. She was 97. In MGM’s “The Band Wagon” […]

SAG-AFTRA’s Gabrielle Carteris Blasts Ruling on Actor-Age Censorship Law

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:04
SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris has blasted a federal judge’s recent ruling barring California’s legislation requiring that subscription entertainment database sites remove an actor’s age, if requested by the actor. U.S. District Court Judge Vince Chhabria issued the ruling on Feb. 20, backing IMDb’s 2016 lawsuit attempting to invalidate AB 1687. IMDb — a subsidiary of […]

Macy’s, Johnson & Johnson Sign On as Major Sponsors of ABC’s ‘American Idol’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:04
Viewers who tune in to ABC’s reboot of “American Idol” on March 11 are no doubt eager to see the contenders and celebrity judges Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan. They will also see prominent ad pitches from Macy’s and Zyrtec. The retailer and the Johnson & Johnson allergy medication will be woven into […]

Why a Female Director Can Give Us the ‘Batgirl’ We Deserve

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 22:01
The announcement that Joss Whedon is stepping down as writer and director of the “Batgirl” film that’s currently in pre-production at Warner Bros. arrives as good news, even if you’re not one of those people (like me) who thinks that Whedon, as a creator of comic-book cinema, has shown more energy than poetry (especially in […]

‘Black Panther’ Eyes Fifth-Highest-Grossing Second Weekend at U.S. Box Office

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 21:31
Disney-Marvel’s “Black Panther” is heading for a sensational second weekend of about $90 million at 4,020 North American sites, early estimates showed on Friday. The super-charged tentpole was projected to take in about $25 million on Friday, its eighth day of release, in a dominant performance that would place it in the $85 million to $90 […]

Independent Filmmaker Project Will Expand Into Podcasts and Audio Storytelling

Variety - Front Page - Fri, 02/23/2018 - 21:30
The Independent Filmmaker Project has announced plans to expand into podcasts and audio storytelling, with the New York-based nonprofit now including the form as part of its artist programs, member offerings, and educational initiatives at the IFP Audio Thought Leader Summit. The new summit will encompass discussions with industry members and aspiring creators interested in […]
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