‘Islam Has Been Held Hostage,’ Says ‘Timbuktu’ Helmer Abderrahmane Sissako

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

MARRAKECH — While at the Marrakech film fest to participate in the Cinecoles jury, Abderrahmane Sissako sat down with Variety to discuss his latest film, “Timbuktu,” Mauritania’s first ever foreign-language Oscar candidate. A politically engaged drama depicting the barbarian occupation of Islamic fundamentalists in Mali, “Timbuktu” grossed over €109,000 ($135,000) on opening day in France — an impressive score for a world-cinema title. The... Read more

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‘Islam Has Been Held Hostage,’ Says ‘Timbuktu’ Helmer Abderrahmane Sissako

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

MARRAKECH — While at the Marrakech film fest to participate in the Cinecoles jury, Abderrahmane Sissako sat down with Variety to discuss his latest film, “Timbuktu,” Mauritania’s first ever foreign-language Oscar candidate. A politically engaged drama depicting the barbarian occupation of Islamic fundamentalists in Mali, “Timbuktu” grossed over €109,000 ($135,000) on opening day in France — an impressive score for a world-cinema title. The... Read more

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‘Islam Has Been Held Hostage,’ Says ‘Timbuktu’ Helmer Abderrahmane Sissako

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

MARRAKECH — While at the Marrakech film fest to participate in the Cinecoles jury, Abderrahmane Sissako sat down with Variety to discuss his latest film, “Timbuktu,” Mauritania’s first ever foreign-language Oscar candidate. A politically engaged drama depicting the barbarian occupation of Islamic fundamentalists in Mali, “Timbuktu” grossed over €109,000 ($135,000) on opening day in France — an impressive score for a world-cinema title. The... Read more

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White House: Public Likely ‘Cringed’ When Reading Sony E-mails

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Friday said he thinks “a lot of people cringed a bit” when reading Amy Pascal’s hacked Sony e-mails in which she jokes about President Obama’s movie tastes with producer Scott Rudin. Pascal apologized for the racially tinged emails, which she called “insensitive and inappropriate but are not an accurate... Read more

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Oscars: 114 Scores in Contention for Top Prize

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has announced that 114 original scores have advanced in the category for the 2014 Oscars. By coincidence, that’s the exact number that qualified last year. This year’s crop includes the usual diversity, with scores from animated features, documentaries, foreign-language films as well as English-lingo titles. Alexandre Desplat leads... Read more

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Mark Hamill on Returning to ‘Star Wars’: ‘I Get the Chills’

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Like many Luke Skywalker fans, Mark Hamill isn’t a huge fan of the beard he’ll be sporting in the upcoming “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” “That is what I call my contractually obligated beard,” Hamill told Yahoo Movies. “I never got used to it. But face foliage is almost a part of the costume. And it does... Read more

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79 Original Songs to Compete for Oscar

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that 79 original songs will contend for the 2014 Oscar. That’s a slight jump from last year’s 75. The list will be winnowed down to five contenders when Oscar nominations are unveiled Jan. 15. This year’s eligible list includes includes tunes from animated films (e.g., “Everything... Read more

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Universal Moves ‘Kong: Skull Island’ Back to March 2017

December 13, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Universal has moved Legendary’s King Kong origins movie — now titled “Kong: Skull Island” — from Nov. 4, 2016, to March 10, 2017. The film will be released in 3D.  The studio and Legendary announced the 2016 date for “Skull Island” during Comic-Con in July, then disclosed in September that Tom Hiddleston was on board... Read more

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Digital Tracking: ‘Exodus’ to Rise Above ‘Top Five’

December 12, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Does digital data offer indicators that can be used to monitor marketing effectiveness and predict box office success even before awareness turns into intent? Moviepilot – which studies social data and box office trends — analyzes this weekend’s new movies across Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Google (the methodology behind the numbers is laid out in... Read more

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Beck Media Expanding to Austin Under Hulu’s Tom McAlister

December 12, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Beck Media & Marketing, the entertainment and technology PR and marketing firm, is expanding its operations to Austin, Texas, under the leadership of Tom McAlister. McAlister, a former Hulu and Warner Bros. Television executive who worked at Beck from 2009-10, is rejoining the firm as managing director to head up the new office, which will... Read more

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