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Box Office

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    Weekend Read: More Public Enemies, Embattled Auteurs, New Moon Spoof

    As I head off for an unplugged holiday weekend--to a pal's Idyllwild hideaway with no wifi (thanks Lili)--here are some weekend links.

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    Soderbergh and Mann: Too Smart for the Room?

    As much as I want to see the Steven Soderbergh/Brad Pitt version of Moneyball, reality needs to return to the movie business. Soderbergh himself occupies a strange nexus within Hollywood. He once told me that he didn't want to direct movies out of the back seat of a limousine. And he is willing to play studio ball or indie ball, as he sees fit. At the same time, like all gifted directors, he wants to push himself, and the art form. But he often loses interest in what movie audiences might want. (UPDATE: On Soderbergh's upcoming Warners' agro-business comedy The Informant!, starring Matt Damon, which is set to debut at September's Toronto Film...

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    Bruno: Beware Sacha Baron Cohen's Squirm Zone

    In many ways watching Sacha Baron Cohen promote his new movie Bruno, from his GQ layout and MTV Awards Eminem stunt to the series of global premiere stunts, from London to L.A. to Sydney, is more fun than the movie itself. While his performance art gives us a bit of distance, in the movie Larry Char...

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    Overture Ups Ante

    As Overture Films lines up their 2009/2010 slate--hoping for a breakout--Wednesday they announced development of Celeste & Jesse Forever, a divorce rom-com co-written by and co-starring Rashida Jones (I Love You Man, Parks and Recreation) and Will McCormack (Must Love Dogs, Syriana). Team Todd (Aus...

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    Six Lessons of Summer Box Office

    First the media touted the uptick in 2009 theatrical business, now they're pointing to a downturn compared to last summer's b.o., a few big flops and the absence of blockbusters. "Through Sunday, summer B.O. revs stood at $1.46 billion, compared to $1.47 billion last year," reports Variety.

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    Transformers' LaBoeuf: Troubled Star

    What a difference two years makes. The picture on left of Shia LaBeouf ran in Parade Magazine when Disturbia made him into a star. The photo on the right ran this week in Parade in advance of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. (Here's http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117940483.html?categoryid=31&c...

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    The Hangover Beats Up, Universal Loses on Land of Lost

    Americans who are cinching their belts and making do with less flocked to cinemas over the weekend to watch a group of grown men exercising no restraint whatsoever. The Hangover was the perfect antidote to a nation on a fiscal diet.

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    Don't Feel Sorry for Michael Bay

    Nobody likes Michael Bay. Give the media a big fat target like a Forbes "who is richer" entry, and they will not resist piling on. New York's Vulture even calls him "the mogul of mindlessness." Lest we feel sorry for him, the guy owns Digital Domain and gets 10% of the gross on the Transformers movi...

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    MTV Movie Awards: Twilight, Bruno vs. Eminem

    The MTV Movie Awards, hosted by Andy Samberg, were the usual lackluster, pseudo-hip, mainstream youth alternative to the Oscars--and huge Hollywood marketing opportunity. Summer movies from Paramount (Star Trek, Transformers 2 and G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra) and Warner Bros. (The Hangover) got promoed,...

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    Cannes Day One: Up Up and Away

    Cannes master promoter Thierry Fremaux knows what he is doing: the photo taken from the Debussy stage of the Cannes press corps wearing 3-D glasses will be seen everywhere. (They had to be returned.) I started out the morning in tears during Up , which as Disney chairman Dick Cook puts it, is Pixar'...

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