Posts Tagged ‘year’

‘Her’: Spike Jonze Brings His Singular Vision to the Year’s Most Offbeat Romance

December 10, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Much has been made of the vocal performance that Scarlett Johansson delivers as the title character in Spike Jonze’s latest film, “Her,” about a computer operating system named Samantha who falls for her human owner Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix). There’s another perfectly cast voice in the movie too — a foul-mouthed alien child who appears... Read more

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3D to Slow in China, While Box Office Powers Ahead: Report

December 5, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

China's box office is set to climb by $1 billion this year according to latest estimates. But the importance of 3-D movies may be about to drop.

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Canada Media Fund Gives Developers a Boost, With an Eye Toward International Competition

December 3, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

It’s the best of times and the worst of times for game developers, especially the little ones. On the one hand, it’s easier than ever to get your game in front of a mass audience. On the other hand, it’s easier than ever to get your game in front of a mass audience. Especially as new platforms lower the barriers to entry for smaller, independent studios to publish or get published, the competition is getting tougher. Two recently released indie games, Outlast and Tiny Brains, got a leg up from the Canada Media Fund, a government organization aimed at helping Canadian companies compete internationally. The CMF covers a lot more than just games. Out of its overall $360 million budget for 2013-2014, $36 million will be set aside for the “experimental stream,” which includes games, apps and other interactive content. The larger “convergent stream” covers Canadian-produced TV programs with digital media components. The CMF’s director of industry and market trends, Catalina Briceno, said this year about half of the $36 million allotted for “experimental” projects will go to games. To qualify for a chunk of that $18 million, games must have innovative content, business models or technology behind them, with two rounds each throughout the year for what the CMF considers to be the three stages of a project: Development, production and marketing. “Innovation is not white or black,” Briceno said. “There’s a lot of gray zones, a lot of nuances.” The degree of innovation is judged by an international jury of digital media experts, first over phone meetings and then in two days of face-to-face deliberation.

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Either Ugly Sweaters Are Still In, or Amazon Is Very Late to the Party

November 27, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

The author in his ugly sweater, circa 2009. The last time I went to a so-called “ugly sweater” holiday party, the year was 2009. And even then, the party theme already seemed old (though you couldn’t tell by the look on my face). But, alas, either ugly sweaters are making a comeback, or their (dare I call it) popularity never really faded at all. This year’s example: has created an Ugly Christmas Sweater page within its Clothing category, marking the first time the Seattle-based retailer has done so, according to spokesman Scott Stanzel. The e-commerce marketplace has also bought up a bunch of keyword ads on Google for terms such as “ugly sweaters,” “ugly Christmas sweaters” and “ugly holiday sweaters.” has also paid to have its own ugly sweaters show up in the paid-ad box on Google alongside Amazon — also a first, according to spokesman Eddie Baeb. Even British online retailer ASOS is trying to get in on the action, snagging some ads atop certain related search queries. It seems, then, that perhaps I’ve just gotten too old to appreciate a good fad, especially if you trust this comment from a retail analyst Reuters spoke to . “This is going to be a Christmas of ugly sweaters,” she told Reuters.

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‘Ilo Ilo’ Reins in Golden Horse Awards

November 23, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Prizes at Taiwan’s Golden Horse Awards, awarded for the year’s best best Chinese language films, were roughly split between Wong Kar-wai’s “The Grandmaster” and Singaporean first time director Anthony Chen’s “Ilo Ilo.” But “Ilo Ilo” top the top honors.

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Universal Will Hold its Second ‘Purge’ on June 20, 2014

November 20, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Not wanting to monkey with a solid system, Universal is dating its “Purge” sequel for the same month as its predecessor, laying claim to June 20, 2014. The original, which marked Universal’s first low-budget thriller from Jason Blum’s Blumhouse Productions, launched June 7 this year, grossing nearly $90 million worldwide, with a production budget of... Read more

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Amazon Scores Another PBS Exclusive, ‘Mr. Selfridge’ Starring Jeremy Piven

November 20, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Amazon struck a deal with PBS for exclusive online-only subscription VOD rights to period drama “Mr. Selfridge,” which stars Jeremy Piven. Starting Wednesday, Amazon’s Prime Instant Video service will offer season 1 of the ITV Studios/Masterpiece co-production from WGBH Boston. Deal follows the agreement PBS and Amazon cut earlier this year under which Amazon —... Read more

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Midem Unveils New Developments Amid Music Biz’ Rebound

November 19, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

PARIS– As the music biz rebounds, Midem, the Cannes-set international music confab, looks to boost its B2B appeal with a Global sync & brand summit, an expanded educational program and live concerts of emerging talent.   The theme of this year’s four-day event , “Back to growth? Make it sustainable” will address the music industry’s... Read more

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Redfin Raises $50 Million Investment As It Eyes IPO

November 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Redfin, the Seattle-based company that has positioned itself as a tech-enhanced real estate brokerage, has raised a $50 million investment led by Tiger Global Management. CEO Glenn Kelman said in an interview that the company is profitable, will do between $50 million and $100 million in revenue this year, and is on a path toward an IPO.

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‘Breakdown’ tops EFA noms

November 9, 2013  |  Variety  |  No Comments

SEVILLE, Spain – In a surprise, Belgian Felix Van Groeningen’s drama “The Broken Circle Breakdown” led nominations announced Saturday for this year’s 26th European Film Academy Awards – Europe’s equivalent of the Oscars – scoring in five categories. But, in one of the most open EFA races in years, “Breakdown” will face off for best pic with Giuseppe... Read more

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