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  • The Playlist
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    First Look At Pixar's First Female Protagonist In 'Brave'

    Ah, "Brave." Pixar's next film, after "Cars 2" (and their first non-sequel since 2009's "Up") and according to daintily-worded press releases their first "fairy tale," has had its difficulties – Brenda Chapman, a member of the coveted Pixar brain trust and the first female director to helm a feature at the studio, was fired from the movie after developing it for six years. (According to a Los Angeles Times article from yesterday, she is on a "leave of absence" from Pixar and describes her removal as being for "creative differences.") After Chapman left, an empowered Reese Witherspoon, unhappy with the shake-up and loyal to Chapman, also bailed, replaced by "No Country for Old Men's" Kelly Macdonald.

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  • Hope for Film
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    Guest Post by Jeffrey Schwarz: "Event-izing By The Master or How To Put Butts In The Seats"

    Sometimes it seems filmmakers forget they are in SHOW business. It is never enough to simply make a film or screen a film, and then hope that they will come. You need to create an event about your work and screen it in a context that makes people want to participate.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    The Shadow & Act Filmmaker Diary Series (w/ Matthew Cherry) Episode 3: "REST IN PEACE!"

    In case you're just joining us, here's a recap: I'm calling it our Filmmaker Diary Series. Essentially, filmmakers who are about to embark on projects (in this case, feature film projects specifically) will be given space on this site to document their journey, from script to screen, diary/journal style. That's about it, in brief. But I think you get the overall picture.

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  • The Playlist
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    Terrence Blanchard To Score George Lucas Produced WWII Film 'Red Tails'

    Jazz musician and composer Terrence Blanchard is perhaps best known for his work with regular collaborator Spike Lee. His scores tend to be divisive, with some finding that his uniquely evocative style calls too much attention to itself within the context of a film, but they are never dull, standing apart from the generic works that tend to blanket most feature films. And with that in mind, we're eager to hear his next effort which will find him in some new territory.

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'United Red Army' A Text Book Heavy Look At History

    Let's say that 100 minutes is the perfect running time for a film and something that all types of audiences can get behind without complaint. Within that standard is about 20 minutes of leniency; remove that much and things feel brisk, tack on that much and different elements are allowed to flourish which is likely to lead to a more satisfying conclusion. But why does a movie exceeding two hours feel like work just by reading the running time? Even a 130 minute movie will induce some sort of sigh -- are those extra ten minutes really pushing things over the edge?

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Funny or Die: Between Two Ferns with Galifianakis, Ferrell, Jon Hamm and Speed Stick

    Will Ferrell visits Zach Galifianakis's Funny or Die show, Between Two Ferns. Enjoy...Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis: Will Ferrell from Will Ferrell

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  • Shadow and Act
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    More Pics Of Will Smith On "Men In Black III" Set + Brolin, Scherzinger, Warhol, Pods & Hippies

    Nothing to get too excited about, but here ya go nonetheless... we see some pod activity of some sort (in the film, Will Smith's Agent J goes back in time and connects with a Tommy Lee Jones' Agent K in his younger days, played by Josh Brolin, which explains the shots of hippies and the car; singer Nicole Scherzinger in what I guess is some futurist get-up; Saturday Night Live's Bill Hader as Andy Warhol...

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  • The Playlist
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    Watch: 'Happy Feet 2' Teaser Trailer Keeps It Simple With Singing Penguins

    Awwww.......little penguins singing popular pop tunes. They're soooooo cute. Yeah, marketing "Happy Feet 2" should be a slam dunk no-brainer since the fact that it has penguins takes care of half the battle. Who doesn't like penguins?

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Kung Fu Panda 2' Is A Fast & Furry Action Adventure

    Brad Bird, genius director of "The Iron Giant," "Ratatouille," and "The Incredibles," is fond of saying that animation isn't a genre, it's an art form. His point is that there can be animated versions of a wide array of cinematic genres – thrillers, say, or maybe westerns or even romantic comedies. He's right, of course; it's just that most animated movies that aren't made by Bird's compatriots at Pixar aim for that broad, middle-of-the-road buddy comedy bulls-eye. Which is why, when DreamWorks Animation's "Kung Fu Panda" was released in 2008, it was sort of shocking. Not because it was particularly revolutionary looking, and not because its narrative pushed any kind of boundaries. No, it felt genuinely fresh because "Kung Fu Panda" actually attempted to be a full-on, balls-to-the-walls martial arts action movie. And it mostly succeeded.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    Interview With The Leads of "When Beautiful People Do Ugly Things" at Cannes 2011

    Having already lined up an interview at Cannes with Terrell Suggs, NFL linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens, and executive film producer, through his production company, Team Sizzle Worldwide, it was a bonus to also meet some added sparkle to the sizzle in the form of Kari Nicolle and Quincy Smith, the lead actors of Suggs' short film, which played in this year's Cannes Short Film Corner.

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