BREAKING… EXCLUSIVE… Refresh for latest: I’ve learned that actor James Gandolfini died suddenly after a suspected heart attack while on holiday in Rome. He was 51. Gandolfini will be forever known for his portrayal of mob boss Tony Soprano on the seminal HBO series The Sopranos, which won him three Emmy Awards. Chris Albrecht who greenlighted the crime family saga at HBO and gave Gandolfini his start, just emailed Deadline’s Nikki Finke: “Absolutely stunned. I got the word from Lorraine Bracco and just got off with Brad Grey who had just heard from David Chase. We had all become a family. This is a tremendous loss.” (Grey was the executive producer and Chase the creator of The Sopranos.) ”It is with immense sorrow that we report our client James Gandolfini passed away today while on holiday in Rome, Italy,’ said his managers Mark Armstrong and Nancy Sanders. ”Our hearts are shattered and we will miss him deeply. He and his family were part of our family for many years and we are all grieving.” And HBO released this statement: ”We’re all in shock and feeling immeasurable sadness at the loss of a beloved member of our family. He was special man, a great talent, but more importantly a gentle and loving person who treated everyone no matter their title or ... Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: There was no press release announcing his hiring this February. And his official bio doesn’t mention his VHS titles like Playboy: The Best of Anna Nicole Smith. But it’s certainly surprising that Vicangelo Bullock who’s currently the Managing Director for the new position of Outreach and Strategic Initiatives at the prestigious Academy Of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences used to be a soft porn producer, director, and writer. It’s especially shocking to the various Academy Governors with whom I spoke and who told me they didn’t know anything about his background. His AMPAS hiring coincided with the Academy’s big push spearheaded by CEO Dawn Hudson to focus more on diversity inside and outside the organization and for membership. AMPAS could not provide me with a description of Bulluck’s current job but he is listed high up on the roster of Academy administration in 6th place of importance. An AMPAS executive who asked not to be identified insisted to me that Bulluck’s soft porn past did not come as a surprise to the Academy and said, “We knew this when he was hired. It absolutely gave people pause. But he had enough recent references and great relationships. Besides, he was doing that producing 20 years ago. He was a struggling filmmaker.” But I’ve learned from insiders that Bulluck prominently displayed his previous non-profit job as Executive Director of the Hollywood Bureau of ... Read More »
Prime Focus already has a global footprint with offices in the LA, NY, Canada, the UK and India. That makes it more immune to the problems American-based VXF firms like Rhythm & Hues have had sustaining a viable business model (Prime Focus was one of four companies in the running in the R&H bankruptcy auction eventually won by another global firm, India-based Prana Studios). In March, Prime Focus announced a Chinese joint venture with Hong Kong–based private equity group AID Partners and local partner Zhejiang Jingqi Wenhua Chuanbo Co to invest $3M in a new operation that will provide 2D/3D conversion, VFX and postproduction services on the mainland and in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Its recent credits included stereo VFX, 3D conversion and archive footage colorization work on Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. Here’s today’s release out of the Shanghai International Film Festival announcing the Beijing opening: Mumbai, India – June 19, 2013 – Prime Focus Limited (“Prime Focus”, BSE code: 532748), a global leader in media and entertainment industry services, announced today that the company will open a new office in Beijing, China. The move brings the full array of services offered by the Prime Focus group of companies to China, including visual effects, 3D conversion, animation via its Prime Focus World (“PFW”) subsidiary, technology and media management solutions via its Prime Focus Technologies (“PFT”) subsidiary, and overall production and post-production ... Read More »
As exciting as it can be to be part of the audience at the first public screening of an eagerly anticipated film – the new Paul Thomas Anderson or Terrence Malick, the new Rian Johnson or David O. Russell – perhaps the purest pleasure that can be found is that of a new discovery. Picking something to watch with no A-listers, and no internationally-renowned filmmaker at the helm, and walking out a couple of hours later feeling that you’ve uncovered a gem, and have been the first to find a director who could be a major talent to watch. That’s the feeling we had last year at the Venice Film Festival walking out of “A Hijacking,” a Danish-Norwegian co-production playing in the Orrizonti sidebar. The film’s not quite from a total newcomer – helmer Tobias Lindholm co-directed the acclaimed prison flick “R” a few years ago, co-wrote “Submarino” and Cannes Best Actor winner “The Hunt” with Thomas Vinterberg, and is one of the writers on the Danish TV show “Borgen,” a political drama...
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