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Cannes: Sofia Coppola, Nicolas Winding Refn Among Competition Jury Members

Cannes2014_badgeWith about two weeks to go before kickoff, the Cannes Film Festival has announced the jury members who will make up this year’s main panel. Supporting president Jane Campion will be four men and four women, another example of this year’s (unofficial) emphasis on female filmmakers. The world cinema “luminaries” include French actress and former Bond Girl Carole Bouquet; festival habituée sofia coppolaSofia Coppola, whose The Bling Ring opened the Un Certain Regard sidebar last year; Iranian actress Lelia Hatami (A Separation); Korean actress Do-yeon Jeon, winner of the 2007 Cannes Best Actress prize; American actor Willem Dafoe; Mexican filmmaker Gael Garcia Bernal; Chinese filmmaker Zhangke Jia, who won the screenplay award for last year’s A Touch Of Sin; and 2011 Cannes directing prize winner Nicolas Winding Refn. The jury will judge the 18 films in Competition with awards to be handed out May 24. The festival runs May 14-25.

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Sofia Coppola To Helm ‘The Little Mermaid’

By | Tuesday March 18, 2014 @ 10:01am PDT
Mike Fleming

Sofia Coppola Little Mermaid MovieEXCLUSIVE: Sofia Coppola is negotiating to direct The Little Mermaid, a live-action version of the classic Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale for Universal Pictures and Working Title partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner. Caroline Thompson of Edward Scissorhands fame is rewriting the script, about the mermaid willing to make a Faustian bargain to live on land after she falls in love. Previous drafts were done by Fifty Shades Of Grey scribe Kelly Marcel and Shame scribe Abi Morgan, and Joe Wright was at one time eyeing this to direct.

hanschristianThe intention is to move quickly. This is a departure for Coppola in that her projects are usually focused on adult themes. She’s got kids and it wouldn’t be shocking if she wanted to please them with a movie they can see and understand. Working Title is currently in production on Everest, the drama about the climbing disaster. The director is repped by ICM Partners and attorney Barry Hirsch. ICM also reps Thompson. Coppola last helmed The Bling Ring.

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Sofia Coppola To Co-Write ‘Fairyland’ For American Zoetrope

By | Monday December 16, 2013 @ 11:49am PST
Mike Fleming

fEXCLUSIVE: American Zoetrope has acquired screen rights to Alysia Abbott’s Fairyland: A Memoir of My Father, with Sofia Coppola set to adapt it with Andrew Durham. She will produce with Roman Coppola. The memoir was published by W. W. Norton & Co  last June. The book is a coming of age story set against San Francisco’s vibrant cultural scene in the 1970s and ’80s, both before and after the AIDS epidemic, a crisis that would later claim the life of Abbott’s father, Steve Abbott, a widowed poet and gay activist.

sogia“I love the book Fairyland; it’s a sweet and unique love story of a girl and her dad, both growing up together in 1970′s San Francisco,” Coppola said. “I think it will make an engaging and touching movie on a subject I’ve never seen before.”

Said the author: “I’m delighted that Sofia Coppola and Zoetrope are going to create the film version of Fairyland. Sofia’s understanding of the feminine perspective and the artistic vision that she shares with Andrew Durham make them ideal partners to make this movie. I could not be happier.”

Abbot is repped by Gersh’s Brandy Rivers, attorney David Davoli and David Patterson at Foundry Literary + Media. Zoetrope was represented by ICM Partners and attorneys Hirsch Wallerstein Hayum Matlof + Fishman.

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Specialty Box Office: ‘Bling Ring’ Sparkles With A Haute Debut

By | Sunday June 16, 2013 @ 10:30am PDT

Brian Brooks is a Deadline contributor.

Indie FilmsSome said that opening opposite a juggernaut like Man Of Steel would be box office suicide, but not everyone went for the obligatory tentpole. After a splash earlier this year with Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers ($263K opening, 3 theaters in March) A24 once again found box office gold with youth gone awry formula, this time via Sofia Coppola‘s The Bling Ring. The Cannes Un Certain Regard debut opened in just five theaters, grossing $210K. The distributor was clearly pleased, noting that Bling is Coppola’s highest opening since Oscar-winning Lost In Translation. Said A24 Sunday: “Sofia Coppola’s latest and greatest has certainly entered the zeitgeist and we look forward to capitalizing on this great success as we expand nationwide next weekend. It is the highest opening for a Sofia Coppola film since Lost in Translation and played to sold-out crowds in NY and LA on Friday and Saturday with the highest per screen average of the weekend.” Read More »

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‘Bling Ring’ To Close 2013 Seattle Film Fest

By | Tuesday April 30, 2013 @ 11:40am PDT

Sofia Coppola‘s teen crime caper The Bling Ring will make its North American debut at the 39th Seattle International Film Festival after world-premiering at Cannes. The A24 release opens June 14. SIFF is the most highly-attended film festival in the US and runs May 16-June 9. This year’s program screens 447 films and launches its new African Pictures Program highlighting films from indigenous African filmmakers, made possible by a multi-year grant from the Academy. Hit the fest’s website for the full line-up.

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‘Bling Ring’ Will Open Cannes’ Un Certain Regard Sidebar

By | Wednesday April 17, 2013 @ 1:05pm PDT

Sofia Coppola‘s The Bling Ring has been tapped to open the Un Certain Regard section of this year’s Cannes Film Festival on May 16. The pic had been thought to be a potential competition entry; Un Certain Regard is part of the festival lineup but its films are not eligible for the Palme d’Or race. Danish director Thomas Vinterberg has been named the sidebar’s jury president. Bling Ring stars Emma Watson, Leslie Mann, Taissa Farmiga, Gavin Rossdale and Paris Hilton in the story about a group of young burglars who broke into the homes of celebrities including Rachel Bilson, Orlando Bloom and Hilton in 2008-2009. It’s based on the Vanity Fair article “The Suspects Wore Louboutins”, by Nancy Jo Sales. A24 picked up U.S. rights and will release it in the U.S. on June 14. It will be released in France on June 5, a couple weeks after Cannes concludes. The full lineup is being announced tomorrow morning in Paris.

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Hot Teaser Trailer: ‘The Bling Ring’

By | Friday March 8, 2013 @ 8:51am PST

Sofia Coppola‘s The Bling Ring recently got a June 14 domestic release date from distributor A24, which acquired the film in January. Before that, Pathé releases in France on June 5 (there’s also buzz about a potential slot at May’s Cannes Film Festival). Emma Watson stars with Leslie Mann, Taissa Farmiga, Gavin Rossdale and Paris Hilton in the story about a group of young burglars who broke into the homes of celebrities including Rachel Bilson, Orlando Bloom and Hilton herself in 2008 and 2009. It’s based on the Vanity Fair article The Suspects Wore Louboutins, by Nancy Jo Sales. Here’s the teaser trailer:

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Sofia Coppola-Directed ‘The Bling Ring’ Acquired By A24

By | Wednesday January 16, 2013 @ 2:55pm PST
Mike Fleming

A24 has landed domestic distribution rights to The Bling Ring, the Sofia Coppola-directed film that stars Emma Watson and focuses on a group of teens who rip off homes of celebs that included Paris Hilton and Orlando Bloom. The film will be released in June.

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Claire Julien Joins ‘The Bling Ring’

By | Friday March 16, 2012 @ 8:30am PDT
Mike Fleming

Claire Julien The Bling Ring Sofia CoppolaIt has been a good two weeks for the Pfister clan. Shortly after renowned cinematographer Wally Pfister was set to make his feature directing debut on an untitled film for Alcon Entertainment, his daughter Claire Julien was set by Sofia Coppola to join the ensemble of her new film The Bling Ring, which stars Emma Watson, Taissa Farmiga and Leslie Mann. Shooting starts next week in LA. Julien joins fellow newcomers Israel Broussard, Katie Chang and Georgia Rock in the project based on real events surrounding a group of celebrity-obsessed teens who looted nearly $3 million in personal property from the homes of Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and Orlando Bloom between 2008-2009.

Coppola is directing her script, and producing alongside brother Roman Coppola and Youree Henley. Julien will next be seen playing a small role in The Dark Knight Rises. Pfister has been cinematographer on all of Chris Nolan’s Batfilms, and Pfister won the Oscar for his work on Inception. She’s repped by Eric Skinner, one of the eight ICM coordinators upped to agent status recently. ICM also reps Pfister.

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Emma Watson To Star in Sofia Coppola’s ‘The Bling Ring’

By | Wednesday February 29, 2012 @ 11:45am PST

Emma Watson will lead an ensemble cast in the latest from Oscar-winner Sofia Coppola. The Bling Ring is inspired by real events in which a group of teens engage in a string of celebrity burglaries.

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Bumble Ward Buzzing Into Fox PR Post

Mike Fleming

Bumble Ward, who halted her career as a personal publicist to take up creative writing in 2005, is in negotiations to head up film publicity at 20th Century Fox, I’m told. She would replace Carol Sewell and report to Oren Aviv and Tony Sella. When Ward stepped away from the PR game, it was a shock. At the time she shuttered the 10-year old firm she built after coming to Hollywood from London in 1987, Ward had a list of clients to die for — repping Quentin Tarantino, Sofia Coppola, Peter and Bobby Farrelly, Marc Forster, Tony Scott, Stephen Gaghan, James Mangold, Mira Nair, Tim Burton and Paul Thomas Anderson. She also had a thriving Oscar-season business. I could not get a confirmation from Fox, but I believe this will all go down soon.

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Big Fall Fest: Who’s Up Or Down For Oscar?

Pete Hammond

The movies have been unveiled, the reviews are in, the bloggers have blogged, so what’s the verdict? Who’s in, who’s out, who’s hoping for a recount? With a surprisingly active Toronto Film Festival winding down to a halt, and Venice and Telluride becoming distant memories, let’s see where those movies that came in with Oscar ambition and hit one, two, or all three award contender-centric fests now stand at this key early juncture.

THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Sony) - Ironically, the one movie that perhaps generated the biggest buzz this week wasn’t at any of the Big Three. The Social Network stole the thunder from Toronto by beginning screenings for onliners in New York and Los Angeles before it opens the New York Film Festival on September 24th. Oscar Chance: It instantly became anointed a frontrunner for Best Picture.

BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight) – It took Venice by storm with one of the most enthusiastic opening night ovations in years. But at award time on the Lido it was virtually overlooked (except for a breakthrough honor for Mila Kunis). Top reviews and lots of awards talk followed at Telluride and Toronto, especially for Natalie Portman. Oscar Chance: Very much alive in key races including newfound frontrunner status for Portman in Best Actress. Big question is how will older voters react to film’s kinkier aspects?

SOMEWHERE (Focus Features) – Sofia Coppola’s quiet character study won the top prize in Venice despite mixed reviews and some cries that jury president and Coppola intimate Quentin Tarantino played favorites. (Tarantino vehemently dismissed the criticism.) The film sat out Telluride and Toronto by design and will likely be held back from screenings until closer to its late December release. Oscar Chance: Still a bit of a mystery but may be too soft to make a dent. Coppola though is well-liked by her fellow writers and directors and Stephen Dorff is said to be quite good in it.

127 HOURS (Fox Searchlight) – Danny Boyle’s first effort since sweeping the Oscars with Slumdog Millionaire two years ago was generally met with favorable reviews and good buzz in Telluride followed by at least one standing ovation in Toronto. Oscar Chance: Strongest bet in Best Actor for James Franco. A longer shot in Best Picture as “Farewell to Arm” scene may be too much for some at the Academy.

CONVICTION (Fox Searchlight) - Middling reviews and lack of strong buzz in Toronto make this true story a long shot. Oscar Chance: Hillary Swank has a shot in Best Actress but she’s down the list in an exceptionally tough field. Sam Rockwell has film’s best shot in Supporting Actor. Juliette Lewis is also possible but role may be too small.

THE KING’S SPEECH (Weinstein Co) - Strong outstanding period piece puts Harvey Weinstein back in the Oscar game big-time. Triumphed over all comers in Telluride with subsequent buzz seeing hundreds turned away in Toronto. Great reviews and a real crowd pleaser. Oscar Chance: A slam dunk for major nominations across the board and an instant frontrunner that should play right into Academy’s lap.

MADE IN DAGENHAM (Sony Pictures Classics) – Another British period piece that debuted in Toronto to good results and sweet reviews. Story about a group of female factory workers fighting for equal pay is very accessible entertainment. Oscar Chance: This may be Sony Classics’ best shot to get into Best Picture, very Academy friendly film with acting noms possible for star Sally Hawkins and supporters Miranda Richardson and Bob Hoskins.

ANOTHER YEAR (Sony Pictures Classics) – Mike Leigh’s best film since Secrets And Lies didn’t win anything in Cannes in May and seemed to get mixed to excellent reactions in North American premieres in Telluride and Toronto. Those who like it love it. Oscar Chance: Leigh films usually go over well with the Academy but surest thing is the acclaimed performance of Lesley Manville. She should go for supporting where she’d have a better chance than in the overcrowded lead actress category.

THE TOWN (Warner Bros) – Ben Affleck drew pretty good reviews as an actor and especially director out of Venice and Toronto. Depending on how it does at the box office starting this weekend, it could follow a similar trajectory as its producer Graham King’s Oscar winning The Departed. Or not. Oscar Chance: Pedigree is fine but may be too much in the violent action genre. Strong performances could crack one of the acting categories, with Jeremy Renner the most likely possibility in support.

HEREAFTER (Warner Bros) – Clint Eastwood ‘s latest got mixed reviews out of Toronto. Read More »

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Venice: Tarantino Accused Of Favouritism

By | Sunday September 12, 2010 @ 6:10am PDT

The Italian press has criticised the Venice jury president for handing out two major awards to his friends: his ex-girlfriend Sofia Coppola who received the top Golden Lion award, and his mentor Monte Hellman who was given a special career award. Paolo Mereghetti, film critic for Italian daily Corriere della Sera, wrote this morning that “the [jury] presidency of Quentin Tarantino runs the risk of being the most obvious conflict of interest, given that Somewhere and [Hellman’s] Road to Nowhere seemed charming and intriguing but nothing more”. The London critics weren’t particularly wowed when they reviewed Somewhere after its Venice premiere. “For all the similarities, this does not have the brilliant seriocomic moments of Lost In Translation. If that was her hit single, then this is the B-side,” said the Guardian. The London Evening Standard said the film lacked drama. Tarantino has rejected suggestions of awarding his friends. “I wasn’t going to let anything like that affect me at all,” he told reporters after the awards ceremony. “I was just going to literally respond to the film. There was no me steering any direction.” Tarantino said Coppola’s award had been a unanimous jury decision. “It enchanted us from the first,” said Tarantino, “Being her friend didn’t affect me or make me sway the jury in any way. The other members of the jury don’t know her at all. They just loved the film. We kept coming back to it, as one … Read More »

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Sofia Coppola’s ‘Somewhere’ Wins Venice

Mike Fleming

BREAKING NEWS: The Sofia Coppola-directed Somewhere has won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. The film, which stars Stephen Dorff, Michelle Monaghan, and Benicio Del Toro, won by unanimous decison of a jury headed by Quentin Tarantino. Focus Features releases the film in the U.S. Here’s the full list of winners:


Somewhere – Sofia Coppola (U.S.)

The Last Circus “Balada triste de trompeta” – Alex de la Iglesia (Spain, France)

Essential Killing – Jerzy Skolimowski (Poland, Norway, Hungary, Ireland)

Vincent Gallo – Essential Killing

Ariane Labed – Attenberg (Greece)

Mila Kunis – Black Swan (U.S.)

Alex de le Iglesia – The Last Circus “Balada triste de trompeta” (Spain, France)

Mikhail Krichman - Silent Souls “Aleksei Fedorchenko (Russia)

Monte Hellman (U.S.)

Majority – by Seren Yuce (Turkey)

Verano De Goliat – Nicolas Pereda (Mexico, Canada)

The Forgotten Space – Noel Burch, Allan Sekula (The Netherlands, Austria)

Coming Attractions – Peter Tscherkassy (Austria)

Out – Roee Rosen (Israel)

Jean Gentil – Laura Guzman and Israel Cardenas (Dominican Republic, Mexico, Germany)

The External World – David O’Reilly (Germany)

20 Cigarette – Aureliano Amadei (Italy)

L’Oreal Paris Prize
Vittoria Puccini (Italy)

Mani Ratnam (India)

Persol 3-D Prize for most creative 3D film … Read More »

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Sofia Coppola’s Low-Key ‘Somewhere’ Gets Muted Reviews In Venice

The director’s fourth film sees her back in Lost in Translation mode rather than the camp period drama of Marie Antoinette, agree London critics. This time it’s Stephen Dorff rather than Bill Murray who’s playing an actor living an affectless life in a flat, blank hotel room. “For all the similarities, this does not have the brilliant seriocomic moments of Lost In Translation. If that was her hit single, then this is the B-side,” says the Guardian. The London Evening Standard says the film has no dramatic moments. Critic Derek Malcolm thinks Somewhere may last in the memory a little longer than Marie Antoinette, if not quite as long as her breakthrough second film. Read More »

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Venice Announces Competition Line-Up

New movies from Sofia Coppola, Darren Aronofsky, Vincent Gallo and Julian Schnabel will be slugging it out on the Lido. This year’s Venice Film Festival will take place September 1-11. Twenty two films will be competing for the Golden Lion. Among the name European and Asian directors are Germany’s Tom Tykwer and Japanese directors Takashi Miike and Anh Hung Tran. Terrance Malick’s The Tree of Life, starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, was expected to be In Competition too. Venice says that one more title will be added to the line-up on September 6.

Movies screening Out of Competition include Robert Rodriquez’s Machete, Ben Affleck’s The Town and his brother Casey Affleck’s Joaquin Phoenix documentary I’m Still Here.

The Competition
13 Assassins, Takashi Miike, Japan
Attenberg, Athina Rachel Tsangari, Greece
Barney’s Version, Richard J. Lewis, Canada/Italy
Black Swan, Darren Aronofsky, USA
Black Venus, Abdellatif Kechiche, France
Detective Dee and the Mystery of Phantom Flame, Tsui Hark, China
Happy Few, Antony Cordier, France
Meek’s Cutoff, Kelly Reichardt, USA
Miral, Julian Schnabel, USA/France/Italy/Israel
Noi Credevamo, Mario Martone, Italy
Norwegian Wood, Anh Hung Tran, Japan
La Passione, Carlo Mazzacurati, Italy
La Pecora Nera, Ascanio Celestini, Italy
Post Mortem, Pablo Lerrain, Chile
Potiche, Francois Ozon, France
Promises Written in Water, Vincent Gallo, USA
Road to Nowhere, Monte Hellman, USA
A Sad Trumpet Ballad, Álex de la Iglesia, Spain
Silent Souls, Aleksei Fedorchenko, Russia
The Solitude of Prime Numbers, Saverio Costanzo, Italy
Somewhere, Sofia Coppola, USA
Three, Tom Tykwer, Germany

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