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  • The Playlist
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    Weekend Box Office: 'The Avengers' Assemble The Biggest Opening Weekend In History With $207 Million

    Box office: you just got Avenged. Combining the feature attractions of four separate blockbusters, "The Avengers" was looking to at least surpass the first weekend gross of "Iron Man 2," which pulled in a non-3D three-day total of $128 million during this weekend two years ago. However, few expected the team-up film to approach the final domestic tallies of both "Thor" and "Captain America: The First Avenger," roughing up previous weekend record-holder "Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part Two." That 3D-enhanced final installment of the "Potter" series still holds the record for the biggest opening day at $91 million, but "The Avengers"' $80 million Friday wasn't as frontloaded, and the film will finish Sunday at the top of the blockbuster opening weekend summit. Hooray money!

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  • The Playlist
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    Scene:Brooklyn Gives A Preview Screening Of 'Redlegs,' Director Brandon Harris Talks His Influences

    Following a night of short films and a video installation "Green|Red" displayed under the Manhattan Bridge, Scene:Brooklyn took over Dumbo's reRun Gastropub Theater for a special preview screening of Brandon Harris' "Redlegs," a feature following a trio of childhood friends brought together after the murder of another chum. Harris, a regular editor/critic for Filmmaker Magazine and occasional cohort of The Playlist (here he chats with the eternal New Yorker Abel Ferrara), raised the appropriate funds on Kickstarter and ventured to his stomping grounds of Cincinnati to create his debut comedy-drama.

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  • The Playlist
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    Hot Docs Review: 'Bones Brigade' Another Winning Look At Skateboarding Culture From Stacy Peralta

    Most people don't have enough happen in their life to make one documentary, but it turns out Stacy Peralta has enough to make at least two. Eleven years after he delved into his own adolescent history with “Dogtown And Z-Boys,” Peralta has made another skateboarding doc about the next phase of his career after the Z-boys. When Peralta founded his skateboard company Powell Peralta in the late '70s, he brought together a bunch of unknown amateur skaters, cherry picked from around the USA -- including Steve Caballero, Tommy Guerrero, Tony Hawk, Mike McGill, Lance Mountain and Rodney Mullen, among others -- and created a skate team called the Bones Brigade. In case you know less about skating than me, these guys pretty much all grew up to be the top competitors of the 1980s, and went on to inspire and shape the next generation of skaters and their culture -- in short they are skate legends.

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  • The Playlist
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    James Cameron Teases A Possible 'Avatar 4'; Says He's No Longer Developing New Feature Film Projects

    James Cameron has sailed the "Titanic," gone into outer space with "Aliens" and traveled through time with "Terminator." But it looks like the director has committed a large portion of his upcoming cinematic career to the world of "Avatar," to the point where he says he's no longer going to even be considering new feature film projects.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Opening Night: 25 Years of Columbia's Film Festival at Tully Hall

    The 25th anniversary of presenting Columbia University student films kicked off last night at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. Since I was part of the first event in 1987, the celebration filled me with nostalgia, pride, and optimism. 25 years ago, our inaugural night at Symphony Space on upper Broadway consisted of four shorts...

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  • Criticwire
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    This Week on Criticwire: Ranking the Best and Making Criticism Personal

    From Samuel L. Jackson to Weird Pull Quote Theater, everything you need to know from Criticwire from the past five days.

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  • The Playlist
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    'Toy Story 3' Writer Michael Arndt In Talks To Re-Write 'Catching Fire'

    Lionsgate’s “Hunger Games” sequel “Catching Fire” is now packing some new heat. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Michael Arndt, who won an Oscar for his screenplay for “Little Miss Sunshine” and more recently wrote “Toy Story 3,” is being brought onboard to polish the initial drafts that were written by “Slumdog Millionaire” and “127 Hours” writer Simon Beaufoy. “Catching Fire” is, of course, based on the second book in Suzanne Collins’ best-selling young adult series and the follow up to Gary Ross' runaway smash from earlier this year.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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  • Shadow and Act
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    "Neighborhood Watch" Now Retitled "The Watch" In Light Of Trayvon Martin Shooting

    So a few weeks ago, I posted an item about the controversy regarding Fox's big summer comedy Neighborhood Watch about a bunch of schmucks who form their own neighborhood crime watch group, only to encounter some aliens living in their town intent on conquering the world.

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  • The Lost Boys
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    Video: Montreal Underwear Student Protest

    In case you haven't been made aware of the grossly underreported (at least outside parts of Canada) ongoings in Quebec the past few months, the university students of the Canadian province have been on strike from attending school to protest proposed tuition hikes. Involving 193,000 students and 171 student associations, it's one of the biggest and longest student protests in Canadian history (if not the biggest and longest), with seemingly daily protests that have seen as many as 250,000 folks taking to the streets of Montreal.

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