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Ben Affleck

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    Oscar Watch: How Box Office Impacts Oscar Contenders

    Does a film's box office performance have an impact on its Oscar hopes? TOH box office analyst Anthony D'Alessandro crunches the numbers and evaluates the current field of Oscar contenders.

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    Oscar Watch: Director/Picture Splits, Black Swan Promo

    - What are the odds of a director winning an Oscar without their film? LAT's new Awards Tracker blog considers the importance of the best director and best picture unity. "Over the past 20 years, the awards for best picture and director split only four times. That's 80% overlap," notes Tom O'Neil, p...

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    Weekly Wrap: Awards and Festivals, News, Media, Celebs

    In the past week, TOH looked at Names That Rule in Moviesphere, considered Recycling at the Cinema [pictured: DiCaprio and Hall, potentials for Great Gatsby remake] and pondered the five things that went wrong with Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps.

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    Director Watch: Nichols and Hoffman Do Salesman, Aronofsky for Wolverine 2, Affleck and Morel

    Philip Seymour Hoffman will play Willy Loman on Broadway next fall in Tony and Oscar winning director Mike Nichols' take on Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman. It's a role Hoffman has been lusting after, Nichols told the NY Times. The pair, who worked together in 2001 for a Central Park production of The Seagull, have been planning the production for months and agreed upon Linda Emond to play across from Hoffman as Linda Loman. Nichols is not worried about Hoffman's 43 years vs. Loman's 60-something, "what matters is finding the right man to play the part." Brian Dennehy played the part in 1999 when he was 60 and Dustin Hoffman played the ro...

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    Weekend Box Office: Word-of-Mouth Sells Social Network Over Newbies Life as We Know It, Secretariat

    Strong word-of-mouth propelled The Social Network to a strong hold over two openers with femme appeal, the Katharine Heigl rom-com Life as We Know It and the 70s true story sports drama Secretariat, starring Diane Lane. Anthony D'Alessandro reports.A soft Columbus Day weekend frame totaling an estimated $76 million, off 16% from a year ago, slowed moviegoing for new entries this weekend, but kept holdovers alive. Sony’s The Social Network remained online with the masses, hanging onto No. 1 with $15.5 million, off a sweet 31%.  The film saw a 32% spike between Friday and Saturday, clearly indicating that word-of-mouth continues to be strong f...

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    Oscar Talk: Frontrunners King's Speech vs. The Social Network, Why The Fighter Isn't A Shoo-In

    It's only September, which means that Kris Tapley and I are declaring The King's Speech and The Social Network frontrunners---for now. Which films could possibly supplant them? Toy Story 3 is an animated sequel. I argue that The Fighter is directed by the one and only David O. Russell, while Kris po...

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    Salon The Town Review Attacks Affleck for Celebrity Malaise

    While the rest of the world is restoring Ben Affleck to star status after his well-reviewed and well-attended The Town opening, Salon's Andrew O'Hehir is playing Armond White. He detects "troubling signs of celebrity malaise" in The Town, compared to Affleck's directorial debut Gone Baby Gone: "you...

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    Contraband Stars Beckinsale, Wasikowska vs. Phoenix, Panettiere as Amanda Knox

    - Working Title is remaking 2008 thriller Reykjavik-Rotterdam (Iceland's 2009 Oscar submission) for American audiences. Kate Beckinsale will reportedly star opposite Mark Wahlberg in the retitled Contraband. He plays an alcohol smuggler-turned-security guard being lured back into below-ground busine...

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    Oscar Talk: Post-Toronto, 127 Hours, King's Speech, Social Network, I'm Still Here

    In Contention's Kris Tapley and I talked in the same city for this week's Oscar Talk. He's seen Catfish and The Social Network; I saw a bunch of new movies in Venice and Toronto including I'm Still Here, Rabbit Hole, Beginners, and I Saw the Devil.

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    Weekend Box Office: Affleck's The Town Breaks Warners September B.O. Record

    With The Town, Ben Affleck proves that he can open a movie--if he directs it. Not only did the Warner/Legendary movie score with critics at Venice and Toronto fests (earning a remarkable 93% on the Tomatometer) but it beat out the weekend boxoffice competition with a $23.8 million estimate. That's a...

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