China’s Youku Tudou Launches Heyi Film Production Arm

August 28, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

HONG KONG — Chinese online video giant Youku Tudou has launched a movie production and investment company Heyi Film. Heyi will be run by Allen Zhu and CEO with Youku Tudou’s founder Victor Koo as its chairman. Lee Yong Kwan-director of the Busan International Film Festival will serve on its board as an independent director.... Read more

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Universal to Demolish ‘Phantom of the Opera’ Soundstage, But Preserve Silent Film’s Set

August 28, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

As it upgrades its production facilities and expands its theme park, Universal Studios is planning to demolish Stage 28, one of the oldest on the lot, while preserving a 90-year-old set housed in the space and used in the original 1925 silent film “Phantom of the Opera.” Universal’s plans were unveiled in a newsletter sent... Read more

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HBO Nicks Cinemax’s ‘The Knick’ for Labor Day Viewing

August 27, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Hoping to give an audience boost to Cinemax’s new drama “The Knick,” parent company HBO will be airing the first three episodes of the historical medical drama on Labor Day. Starring Clive Owen and directed by Steven Soderbergh, “The Knick” is set in turn-of-the-last-century New York City and tells the story of the surgeons, nurses and... Read more

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Donald Sweeney, Father of Anne Sweeney, Dies at 88

August 27, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Donald E. Sweeney, an educator who achieved breakthroughs in the integration of intellectually challenged children into the Kingston, New York, school system, died Sunday in Los Angeles. He was 88. Sweeney was the father of Anne M. Sweeney, who stepped down earlier this year as Disney/ABC president to direct television. A native of White Plains,... Read more

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‘Big Hero 6′ Gets to Play with the Big Boys in ‘Disney Infinity’

August 27, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Disney isn’t waiting for “Big Hero 6″ to prove itself at the box office before letting the animated film’s characters join the company’s more established characters in “Disney Infinity.” “Big Hero 6’s” Hiro and inflatable robot Baymax will become available Nov. 4 for play in the game. The film from Walt Disney Animation Studios will... Read more

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Int’l Festival Heads Criticize China Over Beijing Indie Event Closure

August 27, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Pressure from officials halted festival that was due to have begun on Saturday, archives confiscated

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Venice Film Review: ‘Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)’

August 27, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

A blisteringly hot-blooded, defiantly anti-formulaic look at a has-been movie star’s attempts to resuscitate his career by mounting a vanity project on Broadway.

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Google Buys Visual Effects Firm Zync

August 26, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Google has acquired Zync, a firm that enables complex visual effects sequences to be rendered over the cloud. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, however, Boston-based Zync, will now become part of Google’s Cloud Platform team, with both offering “studios the rendering performance and capacity they need, while helping them manage costs,” according to Google... Read more

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‘Saturday Night Live’ Gets Labor Day Marathon on TV Land

August 26, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

“Saturday Night Live” is getting a Labor Day marathon this weekend on TV Land. The network will air 12 hours of the sketch show over the holiday weekend, featuring episodes hosted by favorites Justin Timberlake, Tina Fey, Melissa McCarthy, Jennifer Aniston, Jerry Seinfeld and TV Land’s own Betty White. The event will also include several... Read more

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Emmys Earn Second Best Overnight Rating in Eight Years

August 26, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Despite airing on a Monday for the first time in nearly 40 years, the Primetime Emmy Awards delivered strong ratings for NBC last night, coming in lower than last year’s football-boosted affair as expected but still delivering the kudocast’s second best overnight number in eight years. According to Nielsen metered-market overnights, the Seth Meyers-hosted Emmy... Read more

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