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Hot TV Spot: ‘Pacific Rim’

It’s been a couple of months since the last trailer dropped for Guillermo del Toro‘s Pacific Rim. Warner Bros. India today posted the first international TV spot that features Idris Elba’s Lieutenant-Commander Stacker Pentecost who’s “cancelling the apocalypse” as Earth battles evil aliens risen from the deep. The Warner Bros./Legendary pic also stars Charlie Hunnam, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day and Ron Perlman. It opens July 12.

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Berlin: Studio-Produced Local-Language Comedies Tickle Germany’s Funny Bone; Fox Eyes Remake Of ‘The Break-Up Man’

The Berlin Film Festival may be heavy on art-house fare this year, but over at the multiplex, two German-language comedies are burning up the box office. And, they’re both produced by the local arms of a pair of Hollywood majors in a reteam with multi-hyphenate German talent. I’ve learned that Fox is in development on a U.S. remake of its locally-made Schlussmacher (The Break-Up Man), starring and directed by Matthias Schweighöfer, which opened in Germany on January 10 and has taken about $21M to date. After five weeks of release, the film that was made for about $5M, was number three at the box office this past weekend, selling more than 2M tickets so far. It’s a rare film that crosses the 2M admissions threshold – when one does, it’s often a U.S. blockbuster. Schweighöfer also wrote and produced The Break-Up Man about a guy who specializes in helping couples separate. He previously had a role in Valkyrie and starred in Fox’s 2011 German hit What A Man, which he also wrote and directed.

Also making waves is Warner Bros.’ family comedy, Kokowääh 2, starring and directed by Til Schweiger. It was number one in its debut last weekend, selling about 600,000 tickets and landing it ahead of Django Unchained. The … Read More »

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UPDATE: N.Z. Journalist Not Disinvited From ‘Hobbit’ Premiere; There Is “No Media Blacklist”

By | Wednesday November 21, 2012 @ 9:23am PST

UPDATE: Deadline has learned that Radio New Zealand journalist Cushla Norman is in fact invited to the red carpet and press conference for Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. While we understand a mistake was made in uninviting the reporter, it has been rectified and her credentials have not been revoked. People close to the situation have assured Deadline that there is no media blacklist.

Norman said earlier today that her premiere and press conference credentials had been revoked because of her negative coverage. Separately, Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit production company Wingnut Films told New Zealand’s TV3 “We don’t have — and have never had — any form of media blacklist. That’s not who we are or how we operate.” Read More »

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Warner Bros & New Line Cinema Deny ‘Hobbit’ Animal Abuse Allegations

By | Tuesday November 20, 2012 @ 6:32pm PST

Warner Bros and New Line Cinema are fully supporting Peter Jackson and The Hobbit producers regarding the recent allegations of animal abuse. You can read their statement below:

Peter Jackson Posts on Facebook Page Defense by ‘The Hobbit’ Production Team Against Animal Cruelty Allegations
‘Hobbit’ Filmmakers Slam PETA Over Animal Abuse Claims In Deaths

Warner Bros. Pictures and New Line Cinema join Peter Jackson and the producers of THE HOBBIT in vigorously refuting and condemning accusations of animal abuse on the films. The production acted swiftly and responsibly in addressing any incidents involving animals in its care throughout the long filming process, and in fact, measures were taken to protect all farm animals, including those uninvolved with the films.

We question the timing of this misinformation — given THE HOBBIT’s imminent release — and have no recourse other than to reveal that the primary source of these new allegations can be traced to freelance animal wranglers who were dismissed by the production over a year ago for cause. We are immensely proud of our association with Sir Peter Jackson, his dedicated film crew and the people of New Zealand.

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Warner Bros Agrees To Release Up To 20 More Films On IMAX Over Next 3 Years

By | Thursday November 15, 2012 @ 4:45am PST

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 15, 2012  – IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX; TSX: IMX) and Warner Bros. Pictures, a division of Time Warner Inc. (NYSE: TWX), today announced that they have agreed to release up to 20 Warner Bros. films in the immersive IMAX Experience® over the next three years, in an extension of the core partnership that began in 2003. The arrangement will continue to align the worldwide box office power of Warner Bros.’ tent-pole film business with the fast-growing global popularity of The IMAX Experience, providing the studio with an additional, differentiated platform that consistently delivers the best experience in cinema and strong returns for studios and exhibitors.

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Warner Bros Pictures Group Appoints Jack Horner EVP Theatrical Communications

By | Wednesday September 5, 2012 @ 10:23am PDT

(September 5, 2012 — Burbank, CA) – Jack Horner has been named Executive Vice President, Theatrical Communications, Warner Bros. Pictures Group. The announcement was made today by Sue Kroll, President, Worldwide Marketing, Warner Bros. Pictures, to whom Horner will report.

In this newly created position at the studio, Horner will handle corporate PR issues specifically for the film division, working closely with Kroll as well as Warner Bros. Pictures Group President Jeff Robinov; Susan Fleishman, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Corporate Communications & Public Affairs; and the film division’s domestic and international publicity units. Horner will join the studio in September.

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Village Roadshow Profits Up 20.2% In Oz; Distribution Pact With Warner Bros. Extended

By | Thursday August 23, 2012 @ 2:52am PDT

Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney

Village Roadshow LimitedCo-producing the box office under-achievers Happy Feet Two, The Lucky One and Dark Shadows with Warner Bros. doesn’t seem to have hurt Australia’s Village Roadshow Ltd, which today announced a net profit of $A33.8M ($33.5M) for the year to June 30. That’s a 20.2% rise on the previous year. The company didn’t break out the results of its 47.6%-owned Village Roadshow Entertainment Group, which consists of Village Roadshow Pictures and the Concord Music Group. But managing director Graham Burke tells Deadline he’s happy with Village Roadshow Pictures’ performance, “We take a long-term perspective on our relationship with Warner. We put our money as a chip on the table with them.”

Burke highlighted the success of VRP’s Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, which grossed $544M worldwide, and prospects for upcoming releases including Gangster Squad, The Great Gatsby, All You Need Is Kill, Lego and Fury Road. Burke says the 20 minutes of Great Gatsby he’s seen are “breathtaking” and he fully supports the decision to delay the release till summer 2013 to give Baz Luhrmann more time. In Oz, Roadshow Films continued as the top theatrical Read More »

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Netflix Appoints Warner Bros’ Kelly Bennett As Chief Marketing Officer

By | Monday July 23, 2012 @ 6:31am PDT

Former Warner Bros digital marketing executive Kelly Bennett joins Netflix as chief marketing officer at a time when the focus is intensifying on commissioning original programming, the company said. A nine-year Warner Bros veteran, Bennett led the international online campaigns for the latest Harry Potter and Sherlock Holmes movies as well as the just-released Dark Knight Rises. His most recent post at Warner Bros was vice president, interactive, worldwide marketing. In his new job, Bennett will report to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

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‘Dark Knight Rises’ Reveals Production Notes: Synopsis, Dialogue, Interviews

Warner Bros has done everything possible to keep a lid on the details of the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises. So it’s a shocker that today the studio posted a 49-page document filled with production notes – including a synopsis a well as some dialogue and several interviews with the main actors and other behind-the-scenes intel –on the ‘About The Film’ section of the official website. Deadline has decided to publish the notes (via .pdf here) since they’re in the public domain. Please do not read them if you want to be surprised when the finale of Chris Nolan’s Batman trilogy opens nationwide on July 20th.

Related: Chris Nolan Won’t Make Another Batman Movie

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Warner Bros Announces `Cloud Atlas’ Release Date

By | Tuesday June 19, 2012 @ 4:47pm PDT

Warner Bros. Pictures has announced a domestic release date of October 26 for Cloud Atlas. The film is directed by Andy and Lana Wachowski and Tom Tykwer and stars Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, and Hugh Grant. It’s based on David Mitchell’s book that consists of six interconnected stories. The studio also announced it has acquired rights for the film in the major markets of the UK, France, Spain, Australia, and Japan, with plans to release it in those territories in early 2013.
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Warner Bros Officially Opens U.K. Studios At ‘Harry Potter’ Home In Leavesden

In November 2010, Warner Bros acquired the Leavesden studios where all of its Harry Potter films had been shot. At the time, the studio said it would invest more than £100 million to rebuild and expand the London-adjacent facility to serve as its UK base. When I visited this winter, it was basically still a 200-acre construction site, but today the facility has officially opened. I’m told the studio is in discussions on a “major feature film” and a TV series as the first projects out of the gate to shoot at the new site. Scenes from Warner’s The Dark Knight Rises were shot there ahead of the revamp, but the studios will be open to all comers, not just in-house productions. Leavesden has already been attracting tourist attention with The Warner Bros Studio Tour London – The Making Of Harry Potter, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the movies that’s housed just next to the main lot. A press release detailing the Leavesden studios follows: Read More »

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Warner Bros.’ ‘Bullet To The Head’ Gets A New Release Date: Feb. 1, 2013

By | Tuesday May 8, 2012 @ 6:24pm PDT

Warner Bros has given a new release date, Feb. 1, 2013, to Bullet To The Headthe Sylvester Stallone-starrer from Joel Silver’s Dark Castle Entertainment and IM Global. Earlier this year, the studio yanked it from its planned April 2012 release schedule, because the film wasn’t ready in post-production. Bullet, based on the French graphic novel, is directed by Walter Hill and centers on a hitman (Stallone) who forms an alliance with a cop to exact revenge on the killer of their respective partners. Jason Momoa, Sung Kang, Christian Slater and Sarah Shahi co-star. Stallone will next be seen on the big screen when The Expendables 2 comes out August 17.

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Warner Bros Int’l Promotes Publicity Pair

By | Thursday May 3, 2012 @ 1:05pm PDT

Burbank, CA, May 2, 2012 – Having led the Studio’s international publicity operations over the past five years, Lance Volland has been promoted to Executive Vice President, International Publicity, at Warner Bros. Pictures.  Désirée Finnegan was also promoted to the title of Senior Vice President, International Publicity.  The announcement was made today by Sue Kroll, President, Worldwide Marketing, Warner Bros. Pictures.

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IMAX Sets Feb. 10 Release For ‘Journey 2′

Los Angeles, CA – Feb. 3, 2011 – IMAX Corporation (NYSE:IMAX; TSX:IMX) and Warner Bros. Pictures today announced that the 3D family adventure Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, starring Dwayne Johnson, Michael Caine, Josh Hutcherson, Vanessa Hudgens, Luis Guzmán and Kristin Davis, will be released in the immersive IMAX® 3D format on Friday, February 10. The New Line Cinema film will open in 282 IMAX® theatres domestically, simultaneous with the film’s North American wide release. It will also open on 166 IMAX® theatres internationally, 143 of which will open as of Friday, February 10th, with the additional runs debuting over the following weeks. Additional playdates will be added as pending bookings are confirmed.

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Alex Lewis Named VP, Director Of Marketing At Warner Bros. Pictures International, U.K.

London, 30th January 2012: Alex Lewis has been named Vice President and Director of Marketing, Warner Bros. Pictures International, UK it was announced today by Polly Cochrane, Senior Vice President and Group Marketing Director, Warner Bros. UK (WBUK). She will take up her role in March 2012.

Joining from News Corporation, where she is currently Director of Strategy and Marketing Initiatives, Europe and Asia, Lewis will be responsible for the consumer and trade marketing for all Warner Bros. Pictures International’s film releases in the UK, including 2012’s highly anticipated The Dark Knight Rises and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. She will also direct the theatrical trade marketing team and work closely with Neil Marshall, VP and Deputy MD Warner Bros. Pictures International UK and the UK Theatrical Sales and Distribution team.

As a key member of the theatrical management team and the WBUK marketing directors group, Lewis will provide insight and marketing perspective to all aspects of the UK operation, and champion cross-divisional collaboration as part the company’s best-in-class lifecycle marketing function. She will report to Polly Cochrane, SVP and Group Marketing Director, Warner Bros. UK.

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Warner Bros Buys Spec ‘Murders & Acquisitions’ For KatzSmith Productions

By | Friday September 23, 2011 @ 6:54pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has bought writer Jonathan Stokes’ spec script Murders & Acquisitions for a low six figures. The purchase marks the first acquisition by Warners for producers Seth Grahame-Smith and David Katzenberg’s KatzSmith Productions, which recently closed an overall deal with the studio. The action comedy is about a Wall Street stock broker who becomes the target of a hit from a rival firm. Stokes last wrote the screenplay El Gringo, starring Christian Slater, which was just produced by Joel Silver’s genre label Dark Castle Entertainment and After Dark Films. Stokes’ latest spec, Blood Mountain, is currently making the rounds. He is repped by UTA and Energy Entertainment.

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Ben Affleck’s Next Directorial Effort Tells Tale Of Iran Hostage Rescue Mission

By | Saturday September 3, 2011 @ 4:40pm PDT

Ben AffleckWarner Bros has revealed details about Ben Affleck’s next feature directing effort. Argo, which has just begun principal photography, sheds light on the real-life covert operation to rescue a group of Americans during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. Six of the 52 Americans taken hostage during Iran’s revolution managed to flee and find refuge at the home of the Canadian ambassador. The risky mission to rescue them before militants discovered their whereabouts was carried out by CIA exfiltration specialist Tony Mendez, and was not made public for decades. Affleck is portraying Mendez in the thriller, which also stars Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston and John Goodman. Scribe Chris Terrio, who is on board to pen another Affleck directorial project, the Harlan Coben adaptation Tell No One, wrote the screenplay based on a selection from Mendez’s book The Master of Disguise.

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Ed Zwick To Direct Legendary East’s First Film ‘The Great Wall’; Marshall Herskovitz & Chuck Roven Also Attached

Mike Fleming

Legendary East To Raise $220.5M Through Hong Kong For Film Studio From China
BREAKING: Ed Zwick will direct The Great Wall, the first project for Legendary East, that Hong Kong-based stand-alone entertainment company that was started by Legendary Entertainment’s Thomas Tull with Asian partners. Zwick and his longtime partner Marshall Herskovitz will write the script based on a story about the mystery behind China’s greatest manmade structure as imagined by Legendary chairman Tull and World War Z author Max Brooks. Based in Hong Kong with Chinese management and international investors besides Tull, the new company wants to be positioned to produce content that is as commercially viable within China and the rest of the world. The Great Wall will be produced by Legendary’s Tull and Jon Jashni, as well as Atlas Entertainment’s Alex Gartner and Chuck Roven, who is a frequent producer on Legendary/Warner Bros films (currently in production on The Dark Knight Rises and Man of Steel), and Zwick and Herskovitz. The project will be distributed in China by Legendary East’s co-production partner, Huayi Brothers, while distribution in all other parts of the globe is anticipated to be handled by Warner Bros Pictures, which is Legendary Entertainment’s longtime partner on films. Read More »

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Harry Potter Finale Now 2011′s Biggest Film

BURBANK, CA, August 9, 2011 – Warner Bros. Pictures’ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 has now become the top-grossing release of 2011 in all categories: domestic box office, international box office and worldwide box office. The announcement was made today by Warner Bros. Pictures President of Domestic Distribution, Dan Fellman, and President of International Distribution, Veronika Kwan-Rubinek. The last installment of the blockbuster motion picture franchise has broken numerous box office records around the world in just under a month since its July opening. As of August 8, the film had earned $344.8 million domestically and $801.5 million internationally, for an astounding worldwide box office gross of $1.146 billion, making Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 the third-highest-grossing film worldwide of all time.

Veronika Kwan-Rubinek stated, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 can truly be called a global phenomenon. The filmmakers and cast, who dedicated their talents to the success of these films for over a decade, share in this piece of cinema history. We congratulate and thank them all.”

Dan Fellman said, “This is another incredible milestone for the last chapter of this historic film series, and for the Harry Potter franchise as a whole. In a crowded and very competitive summer, it is a tribute to both the film and the people behind it that

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