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Margaret Keane on 'Big Eyes,' art... and my great-uncle, Walter Keane

The big eyes are everywhere. Walk into Margaret Keane’s modest craftsman home in Napa Valley, Calif., and forlorn children with outsize peepers stare up at you from every angle. These whimsical kids are the trademark of Keane’s paintings, which, in the 1960s, filled the aisles of Walgreens and Woolworths, where they sold by the truckloads and brought in an estimated $4 million. Her paintings were so popular that celebrities including Joan Crawford, Kim Novak, Natalie Wood, and Jerry Lewis all sat for portraits. Today, they line the walls of the soft-spoken 87-year-old artist’s living room, adorn the labels of bottles of wine in her home, and make up a collage that covers her coffee table. They are her, she is them.

And for most her career, no one knew she had painted them. READ FULL STORY

We spend a day with Frank Grillo, Hollywood's one-two punch

“Who’s the toughest actor in Hollywood?” Frank Grillo asks, wrapping his hands in preparation for training.

Grillo’s posing the question to Terry Southerland, his trainer of more than 20 years. Lacing up Grillo’s gloves, Southerland doesn’t hesitate before responding, “You are.”

Standing in the middle of an underground boxing gym in New York City, Grillo is just one of the guys. He walks like a fighter, he talks like a fighter, and other than having the best hair in the gym—according to his trainers—he looks like a fighter. In this moment, there’s almost nothing that points to the fact that Grillo’s been a working actor for more than 20 years. READ FULL STORY

Steve Carell North Korea-set movie dropped

As plans for the release of The Interview unravel with Sony canceling plans for a Christmas release, New Regency’s North Korea-set project has been halted.  READ FULL STORY

If 'The Interview' were a prestige pic, how would this have gone?

No one is arguing that The Interview is a great film—or, having talked to some people who have seen it, even a good film. But over the past few weeks, it has stumbled into being a capital-I Important Film in spite of itself—one people should have the option to see in a theater, on its usual release day, like any other film that isn’t causing an international incident.

But how would the conversation around The Interview have been different if Seth Rogen and James Franco’s movie were a prestige pic? If it were more like Hotel Rwanda or The Killing Fields and less like Pineapple Express or This is the End? If it were the equivalent of eating your cultural vegetables and not taking down a bacon cheeseburger with fries, would Sony and theater chains have defended it more? READ FULL STORY

Sony cancels Christmas theatrical release of 'The Interview'

With movie theater chains deciding not screen The Interview, Sony has decided not to release the movie on Christmas as planned. “We are deeply saddened at this brazen effort to suppress the distribution of a movie, and in the process do damage to our company, our employees, and the American public,” Sony said in a statement. “We stand by our filmmakers and their right to free expression and are extremely disappointed by this outcome READ FULL STORY

Theater chains cancel 'The Interview' in face of 9/11 threats

Sony is moving ahead with plans to debut The Interview on Dec. 25, but there might not be many theaters in your neighborhood actually playing it. Not long after the National Association of Theatre Owners released a statement today saying, “individual cinema operators may decide to delay exhibition of the movie so that our guests may enjoy a safe holiday movie season experiencing the many other exciting films we have to offer,” several of the biggest theater chains indicated that they would not be featuring the James Franco/Seth Rogen comedy about an assassination attempt on North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un due to the terrorist threats made by the Guardians of Peace hackers.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, AMC, Regal, Cinemark, and Cineplex theaters have followed the lead of the Carmike and Bow Tie chains and will not be screening The Interview. Sony declined to comment on the new development, but since those six theater chains are made up of more than 1,700 theaters in North America, it will be difficult for the studio to mount a significant theatrical release at this time.

“Due to the wavering support of the film The Interview by Sony Pictures, as well as the ambiguous nature of any real or perceived security threats, Regal Entertainment Group has decided to delay the opening of the film in our theatres,” read Regal’s official statement. READ FULL STORY

Celebs urge seeing Sony's 'The Interview' as act of defiance

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If you don’t see The Interview, do the terrorists win?

In the wake of Tuesday’s unprecedented hacker threat pledging 9/11-style attacks on theaters screening Sony’s The Interview, a few Hollywood luminaries are encouraging fans to buy a ticket to the film as an act of defiance. Actor-producer Adam McKay, writer-producer Judd Apatow, and writer-actress Mindy Kaling are among those urging their Twitter followers to support the imperiled Seth Rogen and James Franco comedy about an assassination attempt on North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. Currently, the film is scheduled to open nationwide on Christmas.

McKay tweeted: READ FULL STORY

Study: Children's movies are morbid, morbid things

Remember that movie where the title character’s parents are mauled to death by a wild leopard four minutes in? Or how about the one where the protagonist, only a baby, is left to fend for himself after his mom is murdered? Those traumatizing bummers would be Tarzan and Bambi, respectively. New research reported by The Atlantic reveals that those films are no exception: According to a study published yesterday in The British Medical Journal, children’s movies are much more morbid than their adult drama counterparts.

READ FULL STORY

Randall Park discusses playing Kim Jong-un in 'The Interview,' addresses threats against film

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At the heart of the controversy surrounding The Interview is the film’s actual plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. But amid all the reactions from stars James Franco and Seth Rogen, little has been heard from the actor portraying Kim—Randall Park.

Park spoke with the Los Angeles Times about his role in the film, offering his take on playing the character, what it’s been like to deal with the threats made against those involved with the film, and even how he thinks Jong-un might feel about the movie if he were to watch it.

READ FULL STORY

Ten things Andy Serkis can say about 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens'

“Who does Andy Serkis play in Star Wars: The Force Awakens?” is one of the thousand questions fans have been asking about next year’s Episode VII. And the actor himself seems to be bursting with the desire to talk about which galactic denizen he’ll be inhabiting.

But Serkis, best known as Gollum from The Lord of the Rings trilogy (and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey), the giant ape from Peter Jackson’s King Kong, and the smaller but more sophisticated simian Caesar from the new Planet of the Apes films, has been tight-lipped about Star Wars so far.

He’s also likely to be the highest-grossing actor of 2015, as he’s the only person with supporting roles in both The Force Awakens and the Avengers sequel Age of Ultron.

When Entertainment Weekly caught up with him recently at the premiere for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Serkis did offer a few Star Wars teases—and happily debunked some of the rumors making the rounds. Here’s what we learned … READ FULL STORY

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