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  • Shadow and Act
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    Trailer For "Battlefield America" (From The Team Behind "You Got Served")

    Marques Houston, Mekia Cox, Christopher Michael Jones, and Lynn Whitfield star in this junior You Got Served product from director C. Brian, which is expected in theaters on June 1.

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    More: Trailer
  • Press Play
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    VIDEO ESSAY: AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN HOLLYWOOD: HORROR, MAKEUP AND THE OSCARS

    The practitioners of visual effects have a favorite phrase for what they do: the Invisible Art – effects that are imaginative, even astonishing, but that are ultimately there to sell a world, a character or a moment. Special makeup might be the best illustration of this principle. One of makeup's greatest triumphs is An American Werewolf in London, which in 1982 became the first film to win an Oscar for makeup in regular competition. Overseen by Rick Baker, who supervised all of the film's makeup effects, it shows a man changing into a werewolf in real time…right in front of your eyes. This sequence was the culmination of eight decades of movie makeup. And the film's Oscar represented a coming-out for a once-neglected aspect of filmmaking.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Immersed in Movies: Oscar's Retro Vibe, from 'The Artist,' 'Hugo' and 'Midnight in Paris' to Animated Shorts

    I've been having a continuing conversation with William Joyce about this year's retro vibe among the Oscar contenders. How else do you explain the similarities between his animated short, "The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore," and "Hugo" and "The Artist"?

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  • The Playlist
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    5 Oscars Wins That We'd Love To See This Year (Even If They Won't Happen)

    Sometimes, the nomination is the prize. Even in more open years than this one (where many of the major prizes have been locked in for weeks, if not months), only two or three of the nominees have had a realistic chance of winning, with the others merely filling out the field. Which is not to say that they're not deserving. Indeed, quite often, the anointed winner is in that position because they're overdue, or they're part of a film that's sweeping the Oscars in general, or any one of a number of reasons.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    See Zoe Saldana Wielding A Phaser In Pic From "Star Trek 2"

    Principal photography for Star Trek 2 is in progress currently, although we still know very little about the story it's going to tell - other than who's in the film.

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    More: Pics
  • The Playlist
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    Paul Walker To Star In Disaster Pic 'Skyscraper' & Narrate IMAX Doc 'Air Racers'

    It looks like Universal wants to get into...the Paul Walker business? Yes, really. Variety reports that the actor and his Lacuna Ridge Pictures shingle has just inked a two-year, first look production deal with the studio for some reason. Now, it doesn't seem Walker's shingle has produced anything that has made it to the big screen just yet, but we suppose Universal knows what they're doing in hitching their wagon to this guy.

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  • Press Play
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    OSCARS DEATH RACE: TREE OF LIFE

    It's it fair to review a work that functions, as Roger Ebert said in his piece on "The Tree of Life," as more of a prayer than a story? Can we measure this intensely personal, individual film with traditional yardsticks? I believe it is; I believe we can. Some of the positive reviews of "The Tree of Life" seem defensive to the point of stridency, meeting charges of "but there's no narrative!" with a carpet-bombing of superlatives, and implying between salvos that such an unconventional and daring form of filmic storytelling has no use for bourgeois adjectives like "linear" and "coherent." Well…actually, on the one hand, I agree, in the sense that Malick has his ways of doing things and thinking about stories and connecting (or shuffling) dots, and that peculiar Malickian blend of compulsive control and sticky viscera either hits you or it doesn't, so no review per se is going to change your mind.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Oscar Talk: Pre-Show Final Calls

    Oscar predicting isn't for sissies, especially as Kris Tapley and I have reputations to protect. I can assure you of one thing: I went conservative this year. No wild out-of-the-box predictions (like last year), unless sticking with George Clooney over SAG-winner Jean Dujardin is a reckless move. Not really.

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  • The Playlist
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    Harvey Weinstein Threatens To Leave MPAA, Wants Lady Gaga & Michelle Obama To Help Him Get People To See 'Bully'

    The saga between Harvey Weinstein and MPAA deepens today. As you might remember, the ratings board slapped an R on the upcoming documentary "Bully," effectively preventing the very kids it was made for from seeing the film. Yesterday, Harvey attended an appeals hearing accompanied by Alex Libby, one of the bullied kids in the picture. The MPAA re-voted on the matter, and once again, came back with an R-rating for the film, another decision that once again shows this mysterious body to be hugely out of touch. Apparently, Harv needed a 2/3 majority to get the rating overturned, but lost by one vote. And that was the straw that broke the camel's back.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    ND/NF 2012 Preview - Hatian Djinn Carrénard's Guerrilla Triptych "Donoma"

    I really love the energetic look and feel of this; and the story behind its making makes it even more intriguing to me.

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