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Universal/Focus Features

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    'Fifty Shades of Grey' Brings on Writer Patrick Marber for Script Polishing; Search for New Christian Grey Continues UPDATED

    UPDATE: On the heels of star Charlie Hunnam dropping out of "Fifty Shades of Grey," leaving the Universal/Focus Features production to find a new Christian Grey STAT, it's been announced the film has brought on Oscar-nominated scribe Patrick Marber ("Notes on a Scandal") to do some clean-up work on ...

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    Universal Replaces Schamus with Schlessel to Expand Focus Features Brand

    Universal is under new management. And another specialty division bites the dust. I may be overstating it, but safe to say, the old Focus Features--a high-class specialty division with an eye for awards worthy content--is no more. Longtime Focus CEO and co-founder James Schamus, a New Yorker of disc...

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    Shakeup at Focus Features: Peter Schlessel Named CEO as James Schamus Exits; FilmDistrict to be Absorbed by Focus

    FilmDistrict founder and CEO Peter Schlessel has been named the CEO of Focus Features, effective January 2014, Universal Pictures, Focus' parent, announced Wednesday. Current CEO James Schamus, who co-founded Focus Features over 12 years ago, will leave the company to work with director Ang Lee on h...

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    IN THE WORKS: 'Mother of George' Director Dosunmu to Helm 'Fela Kuti' Musical Biopic for Focus

    Focus Features is developing a drama about famed Nigerian musician/activist Fela Kuti, who was also front and center in the hit Broadway musical "Fela!" "Mother of George" filmmaker Andrew Dosunmu will direct "Fela Kuti," which Focus is describing as a "drama with music," as opposed to a fullblown ...

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    How to Make Sense of the Universal Shake-Up

    It doesn't matter if you turn the studio around and score the number one summer market share. The firing of Universal co-chairman Adam Fogelson reminds us that what matters is whether or not your bosses like you. I remember seeing Adam Fogelson speak at CinemaCon a few years ago, when he was head of...

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    'Fifty Shades of Grey' Gets a 2014 Release Date UPDATED

    UPDATE: The global release of "Fifty Shades of Grey," to be directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, will kick off in North America on August 1, 2014, via Focus Features.

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    'Oblivion' Hauls in Nearly Half of Friday's Top 10 Gross

    With much of the nation's eyes glued to coverage of the Watertown manhunt (which ended after 9 p.m. E.D.T.), Universal's Tom Cruise-starrer "Oblivion" still managed a solid $13 million opening day gross (which includes early shows late Thursday night). The total for the Top 10 films for the day over...

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    Focus Features Adds Kujawski to Sundance Acquisition Team

    Universal Pictures is sending Executive Vice President of Worldwide Acquisitions Peter Kujawski to the Sundance Film Festival, which starts Thursday, to search for film acquisitions for not only the studio but specialized film division Focus Features. The studio wants to centralize and streamline it...

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    Universal Preps for Change, from Meyer's Upstairs Move to Courting DreamWorks' Snider and Spielberg

    Changes are under way at Universal Studios. And the LAT's revelation that studio president Ron Meyer will be heading into an advisory role at NBCUniversal prior to his retirement paves the way for new leadership. The longest- running studio chief in Hollywood has arranged his own graceful exit.

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    Review: Gilroy's 'The Bourne Legacy' Delivers, Thanks to Renner

    I was looking forward to "The Bourne Legacy" more than most studio sequels that have lost their signature director and star. That's because Universal turned to writer-director Tony Gilroy to reinvent the "Bourne" franchise without Paul Greengrass and Matt Damon, who became a movie star playing the t...

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