How A Movie About Kremlin Corruption Became A No. 1 Hit in Russia

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“It says something about Russia’s messy, fitful return to dictatorship that, in the week after the murder of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, the best performing movie in the country, beating out Focus and Cinderella this past weekend, was a thriller whose villain works deep within the Russian government.”

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Record Global Movie Box Office In 2014 Fueled By Huge Surge In China

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“Global box-office revenue climbed to $36.4 billion, according to an annual report Wednesday from the Motion Picture Assn. of America. And much of the growth came from one country: China. The world’s most populous nation saw its box-office revenue jump 34% to a staggering $4.8 billion last year, making it the first foreign market to cross the $4-billion threshold.”

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CBC Names Replacement For Jian Ghomeshi As Host Of “Q”

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The award-winning rapper Shad – Shadrach Kabango – was the broadcaster’s choice to anchor the flagship culture show on CBC Radio One, prevailing over roughly a dozen guest hosts who did stints on the program following Ghomeshi’s firing over accusations of sexual harassment and battery.

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Shad, The New Host Of “Q”, Is The Perfect Anti-Ghomeshi – Does That Make Him A Good Choice?

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“When it went looking for the next host for Q, the CBC was a lot like someone badly burned by their last boyfriend … [it] contorted itself to appear to avoid the pitfalls that made the last relationship tank. … So there’s little surprise that the result is what happens in hastily engineered rebound relationships.”

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YouTube Is Ten Years Old. Uh-Oh – Here Come The Competitors

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Some disgruntled partners aren’t convinced the No. 1 vidsite will be able to fully retain its share of eyeballs moving forward. A top exec at one large multichannel network puts it more bluntly. “YouTube has positioned itself to potentially blow the biggest halftime lead in the history of sports,” he says.

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Drones Will Completely Change How Directors Make Movies

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“Filming with a camera-equipped drone isn’t hard at all. The controls, familiar to anyone who ever used a remote-control car, are easy to operate. The hardest part is keeping and eye on the drone and another on the smartphone displaying its video feed.”

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Who’s Counting The Real TV Audience?

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Not advertisers – and TV executives are fed up with that. They’re “pushing advertisers to pay for all viewers as measured by Nielsen up to a full week after the original airdate. That might sound like inside baseball. But tens of millions of dollars are at stake.”

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Netflix Wants Simultaneous Release Of Movies Online And In The Theatre, But Movie Chains Are Freaked Out

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“This week, Netflix announced that it paid nearly $12 million for the worldwide distribution rights for [Beasts of No Nation]. The movie already has a lot of Oscar buzz, but to qualify for an Academy Award nomination, it has to be shown in theaters before or on the same day it plays on TV, online or other platforms.” But the big chains have already said no.

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Yay? A Third Comic Book Universe Joins The Cinematic Fray

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In case you’re feeling like there aren’t enough superhero movies out there, Valiant “has a library of 2,000 characters, including X-O Manowar and Harbinger, and films based on the titles Bloodshot, Shadowman, and Archer & Armstrong were already in the works.”

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“An Otherworldly Experience Not Quite Like Anything Else In The History Of Cinema”: The Maysles Brothers’ Masterpiece, “Grey Gardens”

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Andrew O’Hehir: “The world it captures, with its mother-daughter pair of aristocratic castoffs and their crumbling, weed-choked East Hampton mansion infested with cats and raccoons, is now so utterly vanished as to seem fantastic, an allegorical dream concocted by Scott Fitzgerald and Flannery O’Connor more than real people who existed within living memory.”

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A-List Stars Used To Sell Movies. Now, Not So Much

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“The shelf-lives of A-listers are just much shorter. Basically, you find a lot more actors having that spark of an A-list spark. The ability to structure a career almost as completely and militantly as someone like Tom Cruise” — who conquered Hollywood hit by hit — “is very tough.”

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“Saturday Night Live” Is Going To China

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“After 40 years as a weekend staple on U.S. television screens, Saturday Night Live will start a Chinese version in partnership with Sohu.com Inc., operator of an online search engine and video streaming sites.”

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Why Net Neutrality Ruling Might Not Be All It’s Cracked Up To Be

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“Competition on the internet is constantly evolving and poorly understood. AOL was a has-been before the ink was dry on the relentless complaints about its unassailable monopoly; cable content is suddenly challenged by streaming video; DSL, once thought dead, now offers 25-75 Mbps service. Yet the FCC’s rules ignore this complexity, insisting on a one-dimensional conception of internet competition that’s never actually existed.”

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ISIS And Its Sophisticated Cinema Of Terror

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“The cinematography is as crisp and chilling as a horror movie. Men in orange jumpsuits kneel on a beach beneath a sky of broken clouds. Executioners hover over them, dressed in black, knives aglint. … This and other recent execution videos released by Islamic State are slickly produced narratives of multiple camera angles, eerie tension and polished editing that suggest the filmmakers are versed in Hollywood aesthetics.”

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When Hollywood Was Truly The Wild, Wild West

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“The new movie colony’s lax self-governance galvanized middle-American arbiters of morality into a force so disruptive and outspoken that even an assumed untouchable like Zukor feared their wrath, lest their cries for reform prompt the Federal Trade Commission to censor his often lurid but profitable movies.”

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A Run Of 1009 Weeks Wasn’t Enough For This Movie, Say Mumbai Film Fans

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“No sooner had it been revealed that DDLJ, as it is known, was being taken off the silver screen than the protests began. According to Yash Raj Films, the production house behind the film, the sudden announcement ‘resulted in a spontaneous and an overwhelming outcry from the cinema-going audience, as well as dedicated fans of the movie, expressing their shock and disappointment.’ And so the record-breaking film was reinstated.”

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The ’80s Mexican Sci-Fi TV Show That Brought Incredible Talent To Hollywood

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“The origins of these goddamn gifted Mexican filmmakers can be traced back to 1988, with the premiere of La Hora Marcada (The Marked Hour), a Mexican television anthology series devoted to tackling experimental horror, science fiction, and urban legends from Latin America. Think of it as the Mexican answer to The Twilight Zone.”

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Hollywood Cheers New Net Neutrality Rules

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“This is clearly a victory for everyone — not just Hollywood, but everyone who uses the Internet,” said Chris Keyser, president of the Writers Guild of America, West. “It is a critical moment in the ongoing fight for free expression and robust competition.”

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“The Brother From Another Planet”: J. Hoberman on Godard

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“Taken with cinema, but not taken in by it, … [Godard] is also the brother from another planet, at once straightforward and cryptic, an epistemologist of cinema, wondering why the film frame became a square and why lenses are round. … What to make of the Godardian mind? You might say that, as prolific as he is, Godard suffers from the attention-deficit disorder of genius.”

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BBC Will Have To Give Up Licence Fee, Say Lawmakers

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“The BBC should reduce its output and the television licence fee should eventually be scrapped, a parliamentary committee has said after considering the role of the publicly funded broadcaster in the wake of a string of scandals and industry changes.”

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