Film Journal January 2018

  • No tags were found...

Create successful ePaper yourself

Turn your PDF publications into a flip-book with our unique Google optimized e-Paper software.

<strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> International Distribution Guide Vol. 121, No. 1 / <strong>January</strong> <strong>2018</strong><br />

Distribution Guide<br />


plays for high stakes<br />

in his directorial debut:<br />

Jessica Chastain and<br />

Idris Elba in Molly’s Game<br />


<strong>January</strong> <strong>2018</strong><br />


reports on The Post<br />


and the little people<br />


runs away with the circus<br />

PLUS: VR, the new entertainment<br />

reality; and relevance of art houses<br />

FJI_Jan18_Cover.indd 1<br />

12/19/17 5:32 PM

From the Editor’s Desk<br />

In Focus<br />

Disney Deal Creates Tremors<br />

The motion picture industry as we know it is about to<br />

undergo one the most dramatic changes ever over the next<br />

five years. It all starts with the recent announcement of The<br />

Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of the film and TV studio<br />

and other properties of 21st Century Fox. The deal is pending<br />

regulatory approval that could take up to 18 months, and<br />

Disney is betting $66 billion that it will be approved by the<br />

Department of Justice.<br />

The chatter in the industry is that the pact between these<br />

two giants will be industry-altering, a mega-merger reshaping<br />

the business and resetting the balance of power. In 2016,<br />

Disney and Fox together controlled 40 percent of the movie<br />

box office.<br />

Over the next several months as this all gets sorted out,<br />

everyone will be talking about the ramifications of the deal.<br />

They are truly massive. Here are areas most likely to be<br />

affected:<br />

* Exhibition will confront the possibility of onerous terms<br />

and less content.<br />

* Fox Searchlight and other small independents will face<br />

great competition and possible hardship going forward.<br />

* What will happen to the many top executives at Fox?<br />

* How will rival studios react to the merger?<br />

* And what happens to Fox Studios?<br />

These are all questions that will be thoroughly digested,<br />

with commentary coming from the press, other studios,<br />

lawyers, theatre circuits and more. With the growing<br />

competition from Amazon, Google, Netflix and Facebook, the<br />

studio system is in for a great awakening. We see potential<br />

takeovers and mergers of Paramount, Lionsgate and Sony.<br />

How else will these companies be able to compete against the<br />

likes of the new Disney company and Warner Bros.?<br />

The Disney takeover is truly about positioning the<br />

company to compete with the Amazons of the world and<br />

to acquire content to boost its own streaming service and<br />

surpass Netflix in this digital arena.<br />

How big is big? Will the biggest companies continue to<br />

co-exist? Only time will tell, but we are going to experience<br />

mergers, acquisitions and consolidation like never before.<br />

Hold on tight—the ride is just beginning.<br />

Virtual Reality Gains Traction<br />

One of the more successful strategies for the survival<br />

of the movie theatre complex in this competitive age has<br />

been the effort to transform them into full-fledged “family<br />

entertainment centers.” You’ll find examples of this business<br />

approach around the country, from the installation of<br />

videogame arcade rooms to elaborate adjoining play areas<br />

where patrons can enjoy everything from climbing walls to<br />

laser tag to mini-golf.<br />

Now, there’s a new diversion making its mark in movie<br />

theatre complexes: virtual reality. VR and AR (augmented<br />

reality) have achieved a degree of popularity with personal<br />

consumer helmets and devices, and now they’re becoming<br />

an added attraction at some of the world’s highest-profile<br />

cinema destinations. IMAX has been leading the way: The<br />

giant-screen pioneer has VR installations next to the popular<br />

Grove lifestyle center in Los Angeles and in theatre complexes<br />

in Shanghai, China; Manchester, U.K., and New York City.<br />

And it’s just opened VR centers in two high-profile venues:<br />

the Scotiabank in Toronto and the Regal E-Walk Stadium 13<br />

& RPX in New York’s Times Square. At the E-Walk, virtual<br />

reality is playing a key role in the complex’s celebration of the<br />

blockbuster Star Wars: The Last Jedi. During opening week,<br />

not only did the latest Star Wars adventure play in every<br />

auditorium, Regal patrons could participate in two IMAX<br />

VR Star Wars experiences: “Droid Repair Bay” and “Trials<br />

on Tatooine.” So VR is already proving itself a symbiotic<br />

promotional tool.<br />

“Droid Repair Bay” is also active at Cineplex’s Scotiabank<br />

Toronto location, along with seven other VR experiences,<br />

including three inspired by franchise movies: Justice League,<br />

John Wick and Star Trek.<br />

In an interview in this edition of FJI, IMAX chief<br />

development officer Rob Lister talks about IMAX’s<br />

pioneering VR initiative and notes that IMAX’s relationship<br />

with blockbuster filmmakers gives it a leg up in creating VR<br />

experiences that will complement their movies: “Being at the<br />

table in discussions about Justice League resulted in us being<br />

able to talk with the same creators and filmmakers about<br />

Justice League the VR experience. Having those relationships<br />

with studio executives and with filmmakers allows us to get<br />

involved at the earliest stage in terms of creating VR content<br />

around tentpole movies.”<br />

Cineplex also recently brought “good vibrations” to VR<br />

with the debut of D-BOX’s VR concept at the Scotiabank<br />

Theatre Ottawa in Quebec. D-BOX’s approach combines seat<br />

motion and vibrations with virtual reality for the 12-minute<br />

animated adventure Raising a Rukus. “Our cinema-friendly<br />

proposal is appealing to many exhibitors,” says D-BOX<br />

marketing VP Michel Paquette. “We see a great opportunity<br />

for many more of these projects in the near term.”<br />

All these signs point to VR becoming more of a reality at<br />

your nearby multiplex. <br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 3<br />

003-006.indd 3<br />

12/19/17 5:06 PM

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / VOL.121, NO.1<br />

A <strong>Film</strong> Expo Group Publication<br />


Post Mortem.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16<br />

Streep, Hanks and Spielberg team up<br />

for drama based on The Washington Post’s<br />

friendly rivalry with The New York Times<br />

to publish the explosive Pentagon Papers.<br />

Hanks and<br />

Streep in<br />

The Post, pg. 16<br />

Alexander Payne<br />

and the Little People .. . . . . . . . . 20<br />

The director of Election, Sideways and<br />

Nebraska turns his satiric genius on the<br />

small-world movement with Downsizing.<br />

High Stakes .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24<br />

Noted screenwriter Aaron Sorkin makes<br />

his directorial debut with star-studded,<br />

dialogue-rich, true-crime drama about<br />

the mother of all gambling dens.<br />

The Noblest Art.. . . . . . . . . . . . . 28<br />

Hugh Jackman is P.T. Barnum in an<br />

exuberant musical of the man whose<br />

motto was, “The noblest<br />

art is that of making<br />

others happy.”<br />

Niko Tavernise © 2017 20th Century Fox<br />

In Between…in the Middle East. . 32<br />

Three Palestinian women balance<br />

faith and tradition in modern Tel Aviv.<br />

West Side Story .. . . . . . . . . . . . . 34<br />

The Landmark at 57 West offers<br />

New York City an elegant stateof-the-art<br />

cinema experience.<br />

Virtual Cineplex.. . . . . . . . . . . . . 38<br />

Canada’s leading circuit unveils<br />

a new entertainment reality.<br />

Think Virtual.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42<br />

IMAX counts on partners for a new<br />

premium experience.<br />

Community Spirit….. . . . . . . . . . . 46<br />

Convergence founder Russ Collins<br />

reflects on the relevance of art houses.<br />

Participating in Good….. . . . . . . 48<br />

Participant Media spurs social change<br />

through the power of movies.<br />

Spanning the Cinema World .. . . 52<br />

ICTA’s L.A. seminar provides<br />

a global perspective on exhibition<br />

New Player in Town . . . . . . . . . . 54<br />

Entertainment Studios Motion<br />

Pictures looks for broad-appeal releases.<br />

Distribution<br />

Guide<br />

FJI’s annual reference<br />

of theatrical film<br />

distribution companies,<br />

pgs. 58-69<br />

Zendaya, Hugh Jackman<br />

and Zac Efron star<br />

in The Greatest Showman,<br />

pg. 28<br />

Niko Tavernise © 2017 20th Century Fox<br />

Canada’s Cineplex<br />

enters virtual reality, pg. 38-45<br />


In Focus. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3<br />

Reel News in Review .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6<br />

Trade Talk. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8<br />

<strong>Film</strong> Company News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10<br />

Concessions: Trends .. . . . . . . . . . . . . 12<br />

Concessions: People . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13<br />

Ask the Audience.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14<br />

Buying and Booking Guide .. . . . . . . 70<br />

European Update.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 79<br />

Asia/Pacific Roundabout. . . . . . . . . . 80<br />

Advertisers’ Index. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .82<br />

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, pg. 74<br />


All the Money in the World. . . . . 78<br />

Downsizing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70<br />

Ferdinand.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77<br />

The Greatest Showman .. . . . . . . . . 74<br />

Happy End.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76<br />

In Between .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77<br />

In the Fade .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76<br />

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.. . . 72<br />

The Leisure Seeker.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72<br />

Phantom Thread . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74<br />

Pitch Perfect 3.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78<br />

The Post .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70<br />

Star Wars: The Last Jedi. . . . . . . . . 74<br />

003-006.indd 4<br />

12/19/17 5:06 PM

Untitled-1 8<br />

11/14/14 6:30 PM

REEL<br />

NEWS<br />


Disney to Acquire<br />

Large Chunks of Fox<br />

The Hollywood studio system sees a<br />

big shift with Disney’s purchase of large<br />

parts of 21st Century Fox for a reported<br />

$66.1 billion. The boards and stockholders<br />

from both companies have approved the<br />

deal, which is expected to take between<br />

12 and 18 months to officially close.<br />

Once it does, Disney will own Fox’s film<br />

and TV studios, on top of several cable<br />

channels (not including Fox News) and<br />

sports networks. Among the properties<br />

that are set to join the Disney sandbox<br />

are Deadpool, Avatar, the X-Men and the<br />

Fantastic Four. Disney chairman and CEO<br />

Rob Iger, who was expected to step down<br />

in 2019, has re-upped his contract through<br />

the end of 2021.<br />

Cineworld to Purchase<br />

Regal Entertainment<br />

Another big deal is going down in the<br />

exhibition sphere. Regal Entertainment<br />

Group and Cineworld Group have announced<br />

their intention to enter into a<br />

merger that will see Cineworld, the U.K.’s<br />

largest exhibitor, acquire Regal for $5.9 billion.<br />

Said Regal CEO Amy Miles in a statement,<br />

“We believe this partnership with<br />

Cineworld will enhance Regal’s ability to<br />

deliver a premium moviegoing experience<br />

for customers and further build upon our<br />

strategy of introducing innovative concepts<br />

and premium amenities designed to enhance<br />

the value of our theatre assets.”<br />

Saudi Ar abia<br />

Legalizes Cinemas<br />

After nearly four decades, Saudi Arabia<br />

has legalized movie theatres. Into the<br />

breach runs AMC, which has signed a<br />

non-binding memorandum of understanding<br />

with the country’s Public Investment<br />

Fund as a means of exploring future collaboration.<br />

Per CEO and president Adam<br />

Aron, “Saudi Arabia represents a lucrative<br />

business opportunity for AMC Entertainment,<br />

and no one does the cinema<br />

experience on a global scale better than<br />

AMC.” Saudi Arabia’s theatrical exhibition<br />

industry is expected to grow to a<br />

value of $1 billion.<br />

Academy Board Approves<br />

Standards of Conduct<br />

In the wake of a wave of sexualharassment<br />

revelations, the Academy<br />

of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences<br />

(AMPAS) has approved “Standards of<br />

Conduct” designed to stop those among<br />

AMPAS’ 8,427 members who would<br />

“abuse their status, power or influence<br />

in a manner that violates recognized<br />

standards of decency. The Academy is<br />

categorically opposed to any form of<br />

abuse, harassment or discrimination on<br />

the basis of gender, sexual orientation,<br />

race, ethnicity, disability, age, religion<br />

or nationality.” Those who violate these<br />

standards will be subject to disciplinary<br />

action, potentially including suspension<br />

or expulsion.<br />

Holly wood Execs Announce<br />

Anti-Har assment Commission<br />

Elsewhere in Hollywood, two dozen<br />

entertainment executives—among them<br />

Disney/Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy,<br />

Disney’s Bob Iger, Warner Bros.’ Kevin<br />

Tsujihara and Netflix’s Ted Sarandos—<br />

have formed the Commission on Sexual<br />

Harassment and Advancing Equality in<br />

the Workplace, to be chaired by lawyer/<br />

whistleblower Anita Hill. Said Hill in<br />

a statement, “We will be focusing on<br />

issues ranging from power disparity,<br />

equality and fairness, safety, sexualharassment<br />

guidelines, education and<br />

training, reporting and enforcement,<br />

ongoing research and data collection. It<br />

is time to end the culture of silence.”<br />

IMAX and Fox<br />

Renew Partnership<br />

In slightly less groundbreaking news<br />

for Fox than the Disney acquisition,<br />

20th Century Fox <strong>Film</strong> and IMAX have<br />

signed a deal to release five Fox films.<br />

One of those films, Kingsman: The<br />

Golden Circle, already came and went;<br />

the other four (The Darkest Mind, The<br />

New Mutants, X-Men: Dark Phoenix and<br />

Gambit) extend through 2019. <br />

Subscriptions: 1-877-496-5246 • filmjournal.com/subscribe • subscriptions@filmjournal.com<br />

Editorial inquiries: kevin.lally@filmjournal.com • Ad inquiries: robin.klamfoth@filmexpos.com<br />

Reprint inquiries: fji@wrightsmedia.com • 1-877-652-5295<br />

825 Eighth Ave., 29th Floor<br />

New York, NY 10019<br />

Tele: (212) 493-4097<br />

Publisher/Editor<br />

Robert Sunshine<br />

President, <strong>Film</strong> Expo Group<br />

Andrew Sunshine<br />

Executive Editor<br />

Kevin Lally<br />

Associate Editor<br />

Rebecca Pahle<br />

Art Director<br />

Rex Roberts<br />

Senior Account Executive,<br />

Advertising & Sponsorships<br />

Robin Klamfoth<br />

Exhibition/Business Editor<br />

Andreas Fuchs<br />

Concessions Editor<br />

Larry Etter<br />

Far East Bureau<br />

Thomas Schmid<br />

CEO, <strong>Film</strong> Expo Group<br />

Theo Kingma<br />


Visit www.filmjournal.com<br />

for breaking industry news,<br />

FJI’s Screener blog and reviews<br />

Like us on Facebook<br />

www.facebook.com/<br />

filmjournalinternational<br />

Follow us on Twitter<br />

@film_journal<br />

for updates on our latest content<br />

<strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> International © <strong>2018</strong> by <strong>Film</strong><br />

Expo Group, LLC. No part of this publication<br />

may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval<br />

system, or transmitted, in any form or by any<br />

means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying,<br />

recording or otherwise, without prior written<br />

permission of the publisher.<br />

6 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

003-006.indd 6<br />

12/20/17 8:27 AM



Movie theaters around the<br />

globe trust the unmatched<br />

quality of USHIO.<br />


Impress your audience with the captivating brightness, contrast,<br />

color and sharpness of USHIO DXL lamps on your cinema screen.<br />

They are the only lamps that are tested, approved and certifi ed by<br />

all major projector manufacturers including Barco, NEC and Sony.<br />

SEE ALSO<br />

USHIO is an Exclusive Distributor of<br />

Washer & Dryer System for 3D Glasses.<br />

Recommended and approved by DOLBY ®<br />

& RealD for the maintenance of 3D glasses.<br />

Ushio America, Inc. www.ushio.com | Ushio Inc. www.ushio.co.jp




Cinemark Holdings<br />

announced the launch of<br />

Movie Club, a monthly movie<br />

membership program offering<br />

ticket and concession discounts<br />

along with other exclusive<br />

benefits. For $8.99 per month, a<br />

Movie Club membership provides<br />

the following:<br />

▶ One 2D movie ticket each<br />

month with premium-format<br />

ticket upgrades available;<br />

▶ Rollover of unused tickets,<br />

which never expire for active<br />

members;<br />

▶ Ability to reserve seats<br />

and buy tickets in advance with<br />

no online fees;<br />

▶ Additional tickets at the<br />

member price of $8.99 each;<br />

▶ A 20 percent discount on<br />

concessions during every visit.<br />



Spotlight Cinema Networks<br />

announced the formation of<br />

CineLife Entertainment, a new<br />

division to distribute event cinema<br />

and other alternative programming.<br />

The content will be<br />

available to Spotlight’s nationwide<br />

network of art-house and luxury<br />

cinemas representing nearly 300<br />

theatres and 1,000+ screens, as<br />

well as exhibitors around the<br />

world. This marks the first time<br />

that Spotlight is moving into the<br />

event cinema marketplace.<br />

CineLife Entertainment will<br />

distribute multiple programs per<br />

quarter starting sometime in<br />

early <strong>2018</strong>. These include musical<br />

theatre, opera, dance, cult film<br />

classics, anime, contemporary<br />

musical performances, and faith<br />

and inspiration movies.<br />

Mark Rupp has been<br />

appointed managing director<br />

of CineLife Entertainment<br />

and will report directly to<br />

Spotlight Cinema Networks<br />

CEO Jerry Rakfeldt. He will<br />

work closely with Ronnie Ycong,<br />

Spotlight Cinema Networks’<br />

head of exhibitor relations and<br />

operations, who will manage<br />

content distribution. Prior to<br />

joining Spotlight, Rupp was<br />

president of SpectiCast, a cinema<br />

marketing and distribution<br />

company for the past eight years.<br />



Regal Entertainment Group,<br />

in partnership with IMAX,<br />

unveiled the new IMAX VR ®<br />

Centre at Regal E-Walk Stadium<br />

13 & RPX in Times Square, New<br />

York City. Regal’s new IMAX<br />

Centre is one of only six in the<br />

world, and invites guests to<br />

experience other worlds with<br />

immersive, multi-dimensional<br />

virtual-reality experiences,<br />

including movie entertainment<br />

content and games.<br />

The Centre, located on<br />

the fourth floor, employs a<br />

new design—proprietary to<br />

IMAX—to allow multiple players<br />

to enjoy interactive, moveable<br />

VR experiences in an highly<br />

social environment. The Centre<br />

consists of two “pods,” which<br />

are designed to optimize user<br />

mobility and interaction in virtual<br />

environments and can be adapted<br />

for specific content experiences,<br />

whether single or multi-user,<br />

as well as a GloStation—a new<br />

hyper-reality escape room VR<br />

experience that allows up to four<br />

players at a time to compete as a<br />

unit with free-roam mobility.<br />



Harman Professional Solutions<br />

announced the grand opening<br />

of the Harman Experience<br />

Center in Los Angeles. The facility<br />

joins a worldwide network of<br />

Harman Professional Solutions<br />

Experience Centers in Singapore,<br />

China and soon in London. The<br />

new 15,000-square-foot, multifunctional<br />

facility showcases<br />

Harman Professional Solutions<br />

products in a variety of entertainment<br />

and enterprise market<br />

applications.<br />

The Experience Center is<br />

comprised of several dedicated<br />

spaces, including a grand entrance<br />

corridor featuring lighting<br />

effects and audio synced to<br />

an 18’x’10’ Samsung LED video<br />

wall; a product showroom; a<br />

6,000-square-foot soundstage<br />

delivering live entertainment<br />

audio, video and lighting demonstrations,<br />

and a boardroom and<br />

training center.<br />



Barco has reached an<br />

agreement to enter into a<br />

strategic joint venture with<br />

China <strong>Film</strong> Co. Ltd., Appotronics<br />

and CITICPE. The joint venture<br />

will serve as the dedicated<br />

commercialization systems<br />

channel for each company’s<br />

products and services for the<br />

global cinema market excluding<br />

Mainland China.<br />

The partners plan to capitalize<br />

the joint venture in the<br />

amount of $100 million. Once all<br />

partners have entered the joint<br />

venture, Barco will own 55% of<br />

the joint venture, Appotronics<br />

and CFG will each own 20% and<br />

CITICPE will own 5%.<br />

Wim Buyens, general manager<br />

of Barco’s Entertainment division<br />

for the past seven years, will<br />

be appointed CEO of the joint<br />

venture.<br />

NAC SETS 2020 DATE<br />


The National Association<br />

of Concessionaires (NAC) announced<br />

that the 2020 NAC<br />

Concession & Hospitality Expo<br />

has been scheduled for Tuesday,<br />

July 28 through Friday, July 31 at<br />

the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena<br />

Vista Hotel adjacent to Disney<br />

Springs (Downtown Disney) and<br />

Disney World in Lake Buena<br />

Vista, Florida. The <strong>2018</strong> Expo<br />

takes place August 7-10 at the<br />

New Orleans Marriott Hotel<br />

in New Orleans, LA. The 2019<br />

NAC Expo is slated for July 30 to<br />

August 2 at the Fairmont Chicago<br />

Hotel in Chicago, IL.<br />



CTC (cinema-technology.<br />

com), previously the<br />

subcommittee of the<br />

International Moving Image<br />

Society (BKSTS), announced<br />

a significant re-launch with a<br />

renewed vision of supporting<br />

the global cinema industry at<br />

its awards night held in London,<br />

England, on Nov. 21.<br />

CTC, with the endorsement<br />

and support of IMIS, has<br />

now become a completely<br />

independent, not-for-profit<br />

industry organization focused<br />

on bringing organizations,<br />

professionals and students<br />

together from across the<br />

world to share knowledge and<br />

expertise related to cinema<br />

technology with the aim of<br />

improving the experience for<br />

moviegoers.<br />

As well as implementing<br />

a new internal structure<br />

comprising of an executive board<br />

and a board of governors, CTC<br />

is creating a new 15-person<br />

advisory council to help<br />

provide steering and support<br />

on key focus areas and future<br />

outputs for the organization to<br />

ensure these are aligned to the<br />

objectives of the industry.<br />

For further information<br />

on CTC including membership<br />

opportunities, visit www.cinematechnology.com<br />

or e-mail info@<br />

cinema-technology.com.<br />



THX Ltd., known for<br />

the certification of cinemas<br />

and consumer electronics,<br />

has entered into a strategic<br />

partnership with China <strong>Film</strong><br />

Giant Screen (Beijing) Co., Ltd.<br />

(CGS), a subsidiary of China <strong>Film</strong><br />

Group, for both technology and<br />

business collaborations.<br />

The partnership is expected<br />

to enable both parties to work<br />

together over the next three<br />

years to secure commitments<br />

from exhibitors to roll out a<br />

8 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

008-016.indd 8<br />

12/19/17 3:55 PM

target of 400 screens worldwide<br />

featuring jointly developed nextgeneration<br />

cinema experiences.<br />

On Dec. 7, THX and CGS<br />

announced the grand opening<br />

of Zhuhai Haiyun China <strong>Film</strong><br />

Cinema, China’s first all-THXcertified<br />

multiplex.<br />


WITH GSC & PVR<br />

CJ 4DPLEX, a cinema<br />

technology featuring moving<br />

seats and environmental effects,<br />

signed a binding memorandum of<br />

understanding for a partnership<br />

with Golden Screen Cinemas<br />

(GSC) in Malaysia and agreed to a<br />

new pact with PVR Cinemas.<br />

This deal with GSC and CJ<br />

4DPLEX will bring a 4DX theatre<br />

to the GSC Paradigm Mall Johor<br />

Bahru location by the end of<br />

2017. This location is GSC’s only<br />

site in the state of Johor and is<br />

accessible to an estimated two<br />

million people. GSC is Malaysia’s<br />

largest cinema exhibitor.<br />

PVR Cinemas already has<br />

three 4DX screens operational<br />

in the country at Noida, Mumbai<br />

and Bengaluru and two screens<br />

soon to be launched at new,<br />

prominent sites. With this<br />

extended partnership, PVR will<br />

add 16 more 4DX screens at its<br />

cinemas, taking the total to 21<br />

4DX auditoriums in India by the<br />

end of 2019.<br />



GDC Technology Limited<br />

showcased its next-generation<br />

cinema automation system to<br />

motion picture exhibitors during<br />

CineAsia 2017 in Hong Kong.<br />

The GDC Cinema<br />

Automation 2.0 (CA2.0) is the<br />

first-ever centralized system<br />

to provide comprehensive<br />

automated management of<br />

content storage and playback,<br />

show scheduling, power<br />

supply and screening quality.<br />

GDC Cinema Automation<br />

2.0 incorporates the SCL-<br />

2000 Centralized Storage<br />

Playback Solution, an integrated<br />

centralized storage and playback<br />

system designed to streamline<br />

content management.<br />

GDC Technology Limited<br />

also announced that cinemas’<br />

global adoption of its SX-<br />

4000 immersive sound media<br />

server with a built-in DTS:X ®<br />

decoder, and the XSP-1000<br />

cinema processor (the GDC<br />

Immersive Sound Solution),<br />

continues to expand. The GDC<br />

Immersive Sound Solution has<br />

been installed, or committed<br />

to installing, in more than 750<br />

screens worldwide. Within<br />

the Asia-Pacific region, China<br />

has the highest growth rate of<br />

DTS:X installations, increasing<br />

the number of screens by 39%<br />

in 2017.<br />



John Barry joined National<br />

CineMedia (NCM) as senior<br />

VP, sales planning, inventory<br />

and analysis, based in NCM’s<br />

New York office. He will report<br />

to Adam Johnson, senior VP,<br />

operations and planning.<br />

Prior to joining NCM, Barry<br />

held various senior leadership<br />

positions over 18 years at<br />

Discovery Communications,<br />

most recently serving as senior<br />

VP, advertising sales, driving<br />

revenue across all brands with<br />

primary responsibility for TLC,<br />

Discovery Fit and Health, and the<br />

HUB Networks.<br />


128 LOCATIONS<br />

ScreenX, the multi-projection<br />

system that provides a<br />

270-degree panoramic film viewing<br />

experience within a theatre<br />

setting, reported a successful<br />

2017 in terms of attendance<br />

and expansion. ScreenX has<br />

more than doubled its number<br />

of worldwide locations to 128<br />

screens as of December 2017.<br />

Also in 2017, 10 titles were<br />

screened in ScreenX, more than<br />

double the number from 2015.<br />



Emagine Entertainment,<br />

Inc. debuted the largest movie<br />

screen in the state of Michigan,<br />

Emagine’s Super EMAX, located<br />

exclusively at its Novi location.<br />

The official ribbon-cutting took<br />

place on Dec. 15, followed by<br />

the first showing of Star Wars:<br />

The Last Jedi.<br />

Emagine’s theatre in Novi<br />

was the company’s first foray<br />

into metropolitan Detroit,<br />

opening in October 2002. Its<br />

ownership has invested over<br />

$5 million to renovate and refresh<br />

the theatre throughout,<br />

including the introduction of the<br />

new Super EMAX screen. The<br />

venue’s revitalization includes<br />

1,400 powered reclining chairs<br />

separated by seven feet of row<br />

spacing, sightlines that have been<br />

computer-modeled to ensure<br />

every seat in the venue has ideal<br />

views, upscale décor throughout,<br />

an enlarged “E-Bar” sitdown<br />

bar, new restrooms, new<br />

ticketing counters, soft seating<br />

areas, and a new concession<br />

menu featuring expanded food<br />

choices.<br />

Emagine’s Super EMAX was<br />

created by combining two smaller<br />

auditoriums and expanding the<br />

overall building footprint. The<br />

screen measures 92 feet wide by<br />

over 48 feet tall and is only comparable<br />

nationwide to the TCL<br />

Chinese Theatre IMAX ® in Hollywood,<br />

according to the circuit.<br />

The Super EMAX also<br />

introduces another innovation<br />

to the Michigan market: Christie<br />

4K RGB laser imagery. It is<br />

paired with a 64-channel Dolby<br />

Atmos ® immersive audio system<br />

and further enhanced with a<br />

QSC Core 110f, a multipurpose<br />

software-based digital audio<br />

signal processor.<br />



Regal Entertainment Group,<br />

one of the largest theatre circuits<br />

in the U.S., has been recognized<br />

by Great Place to Work<br />

and Fortune as one of the 2017<br />

“Best Workplaces for Diversity.”<br />

This prestigious recognition<br />

is determined by more than<br />

440,000 employee surveys from<br />

thousands of organizations in<br />

various industries, and applauds<br />

corporate practices and opportunities<br />

including professional<br />

development, innovation, leadership<br />

confidence and consistent<br />

treatment among employees of<br />

different backgrounds.<br />

“We are honored to be<br />

recognized by these prestigious<br />

organizations, and are proud of<br />

our fantastic team at Regal,” said<br />

Randy Smith, chief administrative<br />

officer and counsel at Regal<br />

Entertainment Group. “Regal<br />

works hard to ensure equal<br />

opportunity throughout the<br />

organization, and to facilitate<br />

important conversations about<br />

inclusiveness in the workplace.<br />

Everyone brings something different<br />

to the table, and we will<br />

continue to foster a company<br />

culture of inclusion.”<br />



At CineAsia 2017, Vista Entertainment<br />

Solutions (aka Vista<br />

Cinema) introduced Cinema<br />

Manager, a browser-based application<br />

that enhances box-office<br />

and concessions sales activities<br />

and frees cinema personnel from<br />

the back office.<br />

“Cinema Manager, which will<br />

start rolling out in early <strong>2018</strong>,<br />

was designed with a user-first<br />

approach from the ground up,”<br />

says Kimbal Riley, CEO of Vista<br />

Cinema. “We spent a lot of time<br />

researching how managers really<br />

worked, so that the tasks<br />

they complete in the application<br />

better match their operational<br />

goals. It’s a browser-based application,<br />

so it is accessible on a<br />

range of devices, and utilizes a<br />

contemporary user interface design<br />

that is more intuitive, easier<br />

to learn and faster to complete<br />

day-to-day tasks.” <br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 9<br />

008-016.indd 9<br />

12/19/17 3:55 PM



The Theory of Everything<br />

co-stars Felicity Jones and<br />

Eddie Redmayne are in talks to<br />

reteam for Amazon Studios’<br />

The Aeronauts. Directed by Tom<br />

Harper (“War & Peace,” “Peaky<br />

Blinders”), the film tells the true<br />

story of 19th-century hot-air<br />

balloonists Amelia Wren and<br />

James Glaisher. Jack Thorne<br />

(Wonder) wrote the script.<br />


Focus Features acquired<br />

worldwide rights to Won’t You Be<br />

My Neighbor?, Morgan Neville’s<br />

documentary about Fred (aka<br />

“Mister”) Rogers. Neville previously<br />

directed the acclaimed<br />

docs 20 Feet from Stardom, Best of<br />

Enemies: Buckley vs. Vidal and The<br />

Music of Strangers. Won’t You Be<br />

My Neighbor? is set to hit theatres<br />

on June 8, <strong>2018</strong>.<br />


Kino Lorber acquired U.S.<br />

rights to Like Me, writer-director<br />

Robert Mockler’s thriller about<br />

social-media obsession. Addison<br />

Timlin (Little Sister) stars as Kiya,<br />

a teenage girl who broadcasts<br />

a crime spree on social media.<br />

Kino Lorber will release the film<br />

theatrically in <strong>January</strong> <strong>2018</strong>, to<br />

be followed by a VOD release in<br />

March.<br />


Andy Serkis has joined<br />

the cast of Lionsgate comedy<br />

Flarsky, about a journalist (Seth<br />

Rogen) who tries to strike up a<br />

relationship with his childhood<br />

crush/former babysitter (Charlize<br />

Theron), who just so happens<br />

to be the Secretary of State.<br />

Flarsky is written and directed<br />

by Jonathan Levine, who worked<br />

with Rogen on the 2011 comedy<br />

50/50. Lionsgate will release the<br />

film on Feb. 8, 2019.<br />

2017’s Top-Grossing <strong>Film</strong>s Worldwide<br />

1. Beauty and the Beast ($1.26 billion)<br />

2. The Fate of the Furious ($1.23 billion)<br />

3. Despicable Me 3* ($1.03 billion)<br />

4. Spider-Man: Homecoming ($880.2 million)<br />

5. Wolf Warrior 2 ($870.3 million)<br />

6. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ($863.6 million)<br />

7. Thor: Ragnarok* ($842 million)<br />

8. Wonder Woman ($821.9 million)<br />

9. Pirates of the Caribbean:<br />

Dead Men Tell No Tales ($794.9 million)<br />

10. It ($697.6 million)<br />

11. Justice League* ($636 million)<br />

12. Logan ($616.8 million)<br />

13. Transformers: The Last Knight ($605.4 million)<br />

14. Kong: Skull Island ($566.7 million)<br />

15. Dunkirk ($525.2 million)<br />

16. The Boss Baby ($498.9 million)<br />

17. War for the Planet of the Apes ($490.7 million)<br />

18. Star Wars: The Last Jedi* ($450.8 million)<br />

19. Coco* ($450.7 million)<br />

20. The Mummy ($409.8 million)<br />

Data compiled as of December 18. Asterisk<br />

indicates movie is still in theatres as of press time.<br />


We have a cast list for the<br />

next film from writer-director<br />

Noah Baumbach, and not much<br />

else. Here goes: Adam Driver,<br />

Laura Dern, Scarlett Johansson,<br />

Merritt Wever and Ozzie<br />

Robinson. Like Baumbach’s<br />

latest, The Meyerowitz Stories,<br />

this new film will be financed and<br />

distributed by Netflix.<br />


The filmmaking duo of Benny<br />

and Josh Safdie are heading to<br />

Paramount division Paramount<br />

Players for a remake of buddycop<br />

actioner 48 Hrs. The Safdies<br />

will direct, with Josh co-writing<br />

the script with Ronald Bronstein;<br />

the trio previously collaborated<br />

on 2017’s Good Time.<br />

SONY<br />

Call Me By Your Name<br />

director Luca Guadagnino is<br />

moving on from sun-dappled Italy<br />

to 19th-century Iceland for Burial<br />

Rites. Jennifer Lawrence will star<br />

in Guadagnino’s adaptation of<br />

Hannah Kent’s 2013 novel, about<br />

the last woman to be publically<br />

executed in Iceland. In addition<br />

to starring, Lawrence will<br />

produce the film, which is being<br />

released through Sony subsidiary<br />

TriStar. Other upcoming<br />

Guadagnino projects include a<br />

remake of Suspiria and a sequel to<br />

Call Me By Your Name.<br />


Another one bites the dust.<br />

Another director of Queen<br />

biopic Bohemian Rhapsody,<br />

starring Rami Malek as Freddie<br />

Mercury, that is. Midway<br />

through filming, director Bryan<br />

Singer was fired, with Eddie<br />

the Eagle’s director Dexter<br />

Fletcher stepping into the<br />

breach. According to Fox, Singer<br />

was fired as a result of him just<br />

up and disappearing from set,<br />

which is something the director<br />

reportedly has a history of<br />

doing. Singer’s story is that Fox<br />

refused to let him take time off<br />

to be with a sick parent. Either<br />

way, the film is still slated for a<br />

Christmas <strong>2018</strong> release.<br />

Kerry Washington and<br />

Rashida Jones are teaming up for<br />

20th Century Fox’s Goldie Vance,<br />

based on the acclaimed graphic<br />

novel series by Hope Larson and<br />

Britney Williams. Published by<br />

BOOM! Studios, Goldie Vance<br />

tells the story of a teenage<br />

girl whose dream of being a<br />

detective lands her in hot water<br />

with an international crime ring.<br />

Washington will produce through<br />

her Simpson Street banner, with<br />

Jones writing and directing.<br />

Fox has optioned the<br />

rights to John Green’s youngadult<br />

novel Turtles All the Way<br />

Down, about a teenage girl with<br />

OCD who tries to unravel the<br />

mystery of a missing billionaire.<br />

Fox previously adapted two of<br />

Green’s other novels, The Fault In<br />

Our Stars and Paper Towns. A cast,<br />

director and writers have yet to<br />

be chosen.<br />

Kenneth Branagh’s Murder<br />

on the Orient Express was a bit<br />

hit-or-miss. After failing to catch<br />

on with critics, it made less than<br />

$100 million stateside but still<br />

managed to pull in $200 million<br />

internationally. Considering its<br />

$55 million budget, that’s enough<br />

for Fox, which has green-lit an<br />

adaptation of Agatha Christie’s<br />

Death on the Nile as a followup.<br />

Michael Green, who wrote<br />

10 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

008-016.indd 10<br />

12/20/17 9:18 AM

Murder on the Orient Express, is<br />

returning for Death. It’s assumed<br />

that Kenneth Branagh (and his<br />

moustache) will be back to direct<br />

and star as famed detective<br />

Hercule Poirot, though no deal<br />

has yet been confirmed.<br />


Universal has beat out<br />

several other studios to acquire<br />

the rights to Long Way Down,<br />

Jason Reynolds’ novel about a<br />

young man who must decide<br />

whether to kill the person<br />

who took his brother’s life.<br />

No director, writers or stars<br />

have yet been attached; Michael<br />

De Luca (The Social Network)<br />

and musician John Legend will<br />

produce through their respective<br />

banners.<br />


Chinese actress Liu Yifei,<br />

also known as Crystal Liu, has<br />

landed the coveted role of Mulan<br />

in Disney’s live-action remake<br />

of their 1998 animated hit. Niki<br />

Caro (Whale Rider) will direct<br />

the film, about a young woman<br />

who impersonates a man so<br />

she can infiltrate the army and<br />

save her father. Liu is a massive<br />

star in her native China, where<br />

her credits include Once Upon a<br />

Time, The Forbidden Kingdom and<br />

The Assassins.<br />


Following the shuttering<br />

of Broad Green Pictures’<br />

production division, the studio’s<br />

legal drama Just Mercy has<br />

officially moved over to Warner<br />

Bros. Destin Cretton (Short<br />

Term 12) is set to direct and<br />

co-write the film, based on the<br />

true story of a lawyer (Michael<br />

B. Jordan) who founded an<br />

initiative designed to defend the<br />

poor and wrongfully accused.<br />

The film will reportedly begin<br />

shooting in early <strong>2018</strong>.<br />


Having tried his hand quite<br />

successfully at the superhero<br />

genre with the two Guardians of<br />

the Galaxy films, James Gunn is returning<br />

to his horror roots. Gunn<br />

will produce an untitled horror<br />

project for The H Collective, with<br />

Brian and Mark Gunn writing the<br />

script. In addition to directing the<br />

two Guardians films, Gunn recently<br />

co-wrote and co-produced Greg<br />

McLean’s The Belko Experiment.<br />

Girls Trip breakout Tiffany<br />

Haddish has joined the cast of The<br />

Oath, a satirical social thriller written<br />

and directed by Ike Barinholtz<br />

(“The Mindy Project”). Barinholtz<br />

will also co-star, along with John<br />

Cho, Carrie Brownstein and Billy<br />

Magnussen. The film, set in a world<br />

where American citizens have<br />

to take an oath of loyalty, will be<br />

executive produced by Haddish.<br />

Lucas Hedges, Julia Roberts<br />

and Courtney B. Vance are set to<br />

star in Ben Is Back, written and<br />

directed by Pieces of April’s Peter<br />

Hedges. Lucas, the director’s<br />

Oscar-nominated son, will play<br />

Ben, a troubled young man who<br />

ventures home for the holidays,<br />

forcing his mother (Roberts) and<br />

stepfather (Vance) to try to keep<br />

their family out of danger.<br />

Oscar winner Mahershala Ali<br />

(Moonlight) and Viggo Mortensen<br />

star in Participant Media’s Green<br />

Book, based on the true story<br />

of an Italian-American bouncer<br />

(Mortensen) hired to chauffeur<br />

a world-class jazz pianist (Ali)<br />

through the Deep South in the<br />

1960s. Peter Farrelly will direct a<br />

script co-written by himself, Brian<br />

Hayes Currie and Nick Vallelonga.<br />

Linda Cardellini co-stars.<br />

Noah Buschel, director of Glass<br />

Chin and The Phenom, is heading<br />

back in time to the 1960s for The<br />

Man in the Woods. Marin Ireland,<br />

Jane Alexander, Sam Waterston,<br />

Jack Kilmer and Odessa Young<br />

star in the Pennsylvania-set thriller,<br />

about a group who confront the<br />

mysteries of their community while<br />

searching for a missing girl. <br />

Pikachu Catches Ryan Reynolds<br />

Ryan Reynolds has signed on to play the titular character<br />

in Legendary and Universal’s Detective Pikachu, a live-action<br />

Pokémon movie from director Rob Letterman. If you’re familiar<br />

with Pokémon, you’ll know that Pikachu is a little yellow furry<br />

creature, so presumably we’re looking at some sort of CGI/liveaction<br />

hybrid. (Also, Pikachu doesn’t really talk. Basically, there<br />

are a lot of questions here.) Justice Smith (Jurassic World: Fallen<br />

Kingdom) and Kathryn Newton (“Big Little Lies”) co-star.<br />

James Mangold Eyes Patty Heart<br />

Director James Mangold has decided on his follow-up to the<br />

critically and commercially successful superhero flick Logan: a<br />

Fox adaptation of Jeffrey Toobin’s best-selling book American<br />

Heiress. Mangold’s film will not share its name with that book<br />

but will tackle the same subject matter, namely the case of<br />

kidnap victim-turned-radical Patty Hearst. Elle Fanning is in talks<br />

to play the famous heiress.<br />

Quentin Tarantino Boards Star Trek<br />

Well, this one is…unexpected. Quentin Tarantino has a Star Trek<br />

movie in the works, and yes, it will be R-rated. Tarantino and<br />

J.J. Abrams are reportedly in the process of putting together<br />

a writers’ room for the film. This is a separate Trek from the<br />

one Paramount already has in the works, the unnamed fourth<br />

installment in the rebooted series that began with Abrams’<br />

Star Trek in 2009. That film has yet to sign a director, though it<br />

is reported that Chris Hemsworth—who played Kirk’s dear<br />

departed dad in the first film—will be returning.<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 11<br />

008-016.indd 11<br />

12/19/17 3:55 PM


TRENDS<br />


Sizing Up Refillable<br />

Popcorn Tubs and Drink Cups<br />

by Larry Etter, Concessions Editor<br />

In an era of expanding concession items, heartier<br />

menus remain one of the biggest challenges to<br />

convincing theatre patrons that concession<br />

snacks are a good value. One means of<br />

creating a value proposition is offering<br />

refillable vessels. Some cinemas chains have<br />

toyed with the idea of creating a value<br />

proposition of annual refillable vessels, such<br />

as popcorn tubs. Purchase the large bucket<br />

for a higher price and receive unlimited<br />

refills for the remaining calendar year. The<br />

question is: How do theatre operators<br />

make this work? Is the aim to build higher<br />

per-capita sales? Is the aim to create a<br />

loyalty program that invites patrons back<br />

to the concession stand for added value? Is<br />

the promotion aimed at making the consumer<br />

visit the concession stand working?<br />

All of these considerations lead to the<br />

concept of value proposition. “I will spend more<br />

today, but my total concession purchases for the<br />

extended period of a year will be less” is the predominant<br />

viewpoint of the participants in these programs.<br />

Many theatre owners offer a refillable vessel, whether it<br />

be for beverages or popcorn, as an incentive to buy into the<br />

snack options at the concession stand. Nearly all proprietors<br />

that use this system tend to add the combo effect to<br />

this application. The overall intent is to meet or exceed<br />

customers’ expectations about the theatre experience.<br />

Some theatre circuits have implemented the ultimate<br />

value system by promoting the “annual popcorn tub<br />

purchase.” The customer is able to buy a popcorn tub at a<br />

higher price than a large popcorn and they get refills at a<br />

huge discount for the remaining visits thoughout the year.<br />

Example: Purchase the 170-oz. large plastic vessel for $20<br />

and get it refilled on any return visit for $2. In comparison,<br />

a typical 170-oz. tub might sell for $8 on a single visit. The<br />

patron may see the first purchase as “sticker shock,” yet they<br />

believe that as a regular moviegoer and popcorn connoisseur<br />

this will make sense and make for a real savings with multiple<br />

visits to the theatre.<br />

Wally Helton, VP of merchandising and promotions for<br />

Cinemark USA, has extensive experience in this arena of<br />

value offerings and is considered by his peers an expert on<br />

the subject. “I started selling refillable popcorn containers<br />

and drink cups in 2000 at United Artists Theatre Circuit and<br />

have sold them at Cinemark since 2009,” he notes. “This<br />

was just an early version of a loyalty program. Once the<br />

guest buys the vessel at your theatre, they need to return to<br />

your theatre in order to use them. Then our guests enjoy a<br />

discounted price for the rest of the year.” This mechanism<br />

of refillable tubs serves a win/win proposition for guests and<br />

theatre operators.<br />

Neely Schiefelbein, VP of sales at Cinema Scene, reports<br />

that the success of the refillable tub has led to many more<br />

circuits employing this strategy. “We’ve seen many customers<br />

adopt the refillable tub concept. Some do it with 85-ounce or<br />

130-ounce, while others use larger sizes like the 170-ounce<br />

and 190-ounce. While it’s been done in many different ways—<br />

standalone purchase, paired with combos, etc.—it’s proven<br />

successful at many circuits across the country. People like the<br />

idea of saving money on return visits. And loyal customers will<br />

buy into this type of promotion knowing they will be back to<br />

their favorite theatre with the incentive of a deal!”<br />

The theatre owner should proceed<br />

with caution, as there are outside<br />

complications to this promotion.<br />

First, after the initial sale of popcorn<br />

in what is typically a plastic tub, how<br />

sanitary is the vessel? Has the patron<br />

kept the tub in the trunk of their car<br />

and do they pull it out on their return<br />

visit to the theatre? Does the local<br />

health department require certain<br />

administration to insure sanitary<br />

conditions for repeat uses of the food<br />

vessels? While the idea of extra value<br />

by buying a refillable vessel has merit,<br />

is the theatre operator aware of the<br />

health risk that they will inherit when<br />

offering such promotions?<br />

In similar conditions, theatre owners are<br />

offering a collector cup for beverages. In many<br />

cases, these cups highlight a particular franchise<br />

film or even the company brand. These vessels are great—<br />

they commit the patron to the brand. Sometimes the drink<br />

vessel has a long-term refillable option—i.e., all-year refills at<br />

one dollar, or sometimes free refills on the day of purchase.<br />

Here is the issue: What if the patron buys the specialty<br />

drink cup on Tuesday, then returns on Saturday with the<br />

same cup and asks for a “free refill” when in fact he/she did<br />

not purchase anything that day on that visit? How does the<br />

concession cashier know the difference? That is why some<br />

suggest a limited-time-only “collector cup” selling out after<br />

100 hours of operation; this way, the concessionaires know<br />

the vessel was not sold on that particular day.<br />

The other option that is emerging is the collectible<br />

popcorn tin. The graphics are incredible. The stability of a<br />

metal vessel is longer than the plastic competitor. The metal<br />

vessel also serves as a multi-use container for the purchaser<br />

after the consumption of the popcorn snack. Patrons can use<br />

the popcorn tins for their home use when popping microwave<br />

popcorn and watching TV sitcoms. The tins themselves are<br />

more expensive, yet theatre operators should understand this<br />

type of retail effect allows the movie lover to attach themselves<br />

to the franchise film. They can take ownership in the movie and<br />

it becomes a reminder of their movie experience, encouraging<br />

repeat visits to the cinema for more “take home” memories.<br />

Larry Etter is senior vice president at Malco Theatres<br />

and director of education at the National Association<br />

of Concessionaires.<br />

12 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

008-016.indd 12<br />

12/19/17 4:10 PM

This month, we remember a legend of the concession<br />

industry, Frank Liberto. Frank passed away in early<br />

November from a lingering illness, and the concession<br />

industry lost “the King of Nachos.”<br />

Frank lived his life with zest and vigor. He was a great<br />

entrepreneur and a mentor to many of his colleagues and peers.<br />

Of Italian decent, he credited his father for his discipline and<br />

dedication to work. Everyone who met Frank has a story to tell,<br />

since he was always willing to give advice and consultation for the<br />

betterment of their lives. While his father, Enrico, and grandfather,<br />

Rosario, were the founders of the family business, Liberto<br />

Specialty Company, and gave him guidance and direction, no one<br />

could have taught Frank the devotion and keenness he had for the<br />

concession industry.<br />

Frank himself founded Ricos Products in 1977. He was a<br />

leader at NAC and served as a regional vice president of NAC for<br />

over 20 years, creating many a concession seminar and educational<br />

program for the people of Texas and the Southeast. He will always<br />

be remembered for wearing his yellow ascot cap with the red<br />

Ricos logo.<br />

Frank was a third-generation leader of Liberto Specialty<br />

Company. He is also credited with inventing concession nachos,<br />

which were unveiled at Texas Arlington Stadium in 1976. While<br />

the family business focused on distribution of food items and<br />

concession equipment, he had an entrepreneurial spirit that led<br />

him to add to the snack offerings at the concession stand. His first<br />

attempt was when he approached the stadium food and beverage<br />

manager at Arlington Baseball Stadium, suggesting he give nacho<br />

cheese with tortilla chips a chance. The manager was reluctant,<br />

but Frank would not take no for an answer and delivered 35 cases<br />

of canned cheese to the stadium anyway. Legend has it that the<br />

stadium sold all 35 cases in one day and the manager called Frank<br />

asking why he didn’t deliver more cases. Frank said he responded<br />

with an expletive, stating, “I told you it was a winner.” Nachos<br />

as we know them today were born from that “Never take no”<br />

attitude. That was Frank Liberto: strong, dogged and persistent<br />

until he got his way.<br />

“Our father, Frank Liberto was a man of integrity,” Ricos<br />

president and CEO Tony Liberto asserts. “He led our company<br />

with an entrepreneur spirit and a passion that had an impact on<br />

his employees, customers, business associates and friends.” Frank<br />

could hold an audience by telling stories and anecdotes about<br />

his early days in sales. He oftentimes had a raw way of discussing<br />

matters, but nevertheless you knew Frank was filled with ardor for<br />

the business. He was driven by a desire to succeed.<br />

A driving force of the National Association of Concessionaires,<br />

as president and board member, Frank never gave up on the idea<br />

of helping young prodigies in the industry. He often took the lead<br />

in creating educational forums that protected the integrity of the<br />

industry and assisted in networking efforts for young managers.<br />

He consistently sponsored NAC events, regional meetings and the<br />

national convention. He contributed countless dollars to offset<br />

the cost of scholastic programs. In 1997, he was awarded the Bert<br />

PEOPLE<br />


A Look Back at the Life<br />

of ‘the King of Nachos’<br />

Nathan Award by NAC, recognizing him for his contributions to<br />

the concession channel of business. He remains one of just three<br />

honorary lifetime board members at NAC.<br />

Liberto received many awards and accolades over the course<br />

of his life. He was charitable both at work and in the community.<br />

He was presented the 1988 Distinguished Alumni Award from<br />

St. Mary’s University and in 1994 was named one of the South<br />

Texas Entrepreneurs of the Year, while Ricos Products was named<br />

the Texas Family Business of the Year by the Hankamer School<br />

of Business at Baylor University. 2005 saw Ricos named a Top<br />

20 private business in San Antonio, Texas by San Antonio Success<br />

magazine.<br />

Frank Liberto advocated for many local and national<br />

organizations in the fields of education, health and human services,<br />

the arts, the military and multiple political organizations as a<br />

donor and supporter. He served with the Knights of Columbus,<br />

the Oblate School of Theology and the Juvenile Diabetes Research<br />

Foundation, just to name a few. He truly gave back to society as<br />

much as society gave to him.<br />

Frank was the kind of guy you always wanted to meet, offering<br />

a huge smile, barrel laugh and great stories. If you worked for<br />

Frank, beware: He was driven, competitive and never accepted<br />

less than perfection. Yet nearly every person who was under his<br />

employ has gone on to excel in business. “Some of my fondest<br />

memories and lessons learned came from Frank Liberto,” states<br />

Charles Gomez, VP of specialty markets at Ricos. “Outside of my<br />

parents, he was the biggest influence in my life. He gave me a work<br />

home when I desperately needed one and was always supportive<br />

of my efforts. He was a pioneer in the concession industry and<br />

instilled in me the value of treating people well. Frank enjoyed life<br />

and we will all miss him.”<br />

Anita Watts Largent, an early hire in sales for Ricos, fondly<br />

recalls her relationship with Frank at Ricos and his personality<br />

that required everyone on his staff to have the same commitment<br />

and resolute attitude. “I was very lucky to work with Frank at<br />

the beginning of my career and he gave me an extraordinary<br />

opportunity to hang myself or fly, and I will always appreciate<br />

it. There were times when I could just strangle him, and other<br />

times when we would drink a scotch and I realized what an<br />

amazing life he had lived. In the end, we should all hope to have as<br />

much living in our story as Frank Liberto,” Anita recalls.<br />

The reality is that Frank Liberto treated everyone the<br />

same. He was not particular in his expectations, nor biased—he<br />

expected everyone to have the same dedication and devotion to<br />

the business, regardless of status, position or relationship. This is<br />

what made him a leader and a success. “That’s our Frank” was a<br />

common phrase among his peers. No one could deny his love for<br />

the concession business or his appreciation of what could be.<br />

Frank Liberto will always be remembered as the father of<br />

nachos, a global empire he built. Those of us who knew Frank<br />

intimately will remember him as a friend and symbol of the<br />

concession channel. A promoter, for better or worse, he loved his<br />

family, his business and his friends.<br />

—Larry Etter<br />


JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 13<br />

008-016.indd 13<br />

12/19/17 4:10 PM


A Collaboration Between<br />

ASK THE AUDIENCE is a monthly feature from <strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> International and National CineMedia (NCM) that allows you to ask<br />

an audience of 5,000 frequent moviegoers, known as the Behind the Screens panel, the pressing questions of our industry.<br />

Decisions, decisions. At every turn,<br />

moviegoers are given options.<br />

What movie? What time? What<br />

concessions will they buy? Where will they<br />

sit? But to you, the theatre owners, the one<br />

that matters the most is one of the first the<br />

customer will make – which theatre should<br />

they go to? Landmark Cinemas wanted to<br />

take a closer look at the thought process<br />

behind that question, so we set out to find<br />

what factors customers weigh most heavily<br />

while they decide which movie theatre to<br />

visit. We asked the audience.<br />

Let’s start with the obvious: location. 68%<br />

of the Behind the Screens panelists say that<br />

they typically frequent one to two theatres<br />

based on proximity. The average distance<br />

they travel to get to the theatre is 9.3 miles,<br />

though 41% said they travel 5 miles or less.<br />

Outside of location, the cleanliness of the<br />

theatre was the number one factor<br />

customers considered when choosing<br />

between multiple theatres, with 89%<br />

saying it was somewhat to very important.<br />

Showtimes took the next slot, with 86%<br />

saying convenience in their schedule played<br />

a big role in their decision. 74% also pointed<br />

to the ticket cost and loyalty program<br />

rewards as major factors.<br />

We also asked our panelists what<br />

improvements, besides lowering prices,<br />

their local theatre could make that might<br />

help push them past the competition.<br />

Common answers included cleaner theatres,<br />

adding luxury and reserved seating if not<br />

already available, friendlier employees,<br />

better loyalty perks, and higher quality<br />

food at concessions. For example, one<br />

panelist wrote that they’d like to see more<br />

concessions specials like a “deal of<br />

the week”… or “candy of the month that<br />

you can add to your purchase for a nominal<br />

amount.” People also seemed interested in<br />

special events, such as “theme nights with<br />

unique snacks and retro movies” or “special<br />

promotions for the local community.”<br />

Loyalty rewards were also popular in the<br />

comments, including “cool perks like giving<br />

out free posters” or “rewarding their best<br />

customers with discounts or coupons.”<br />

So, the moral of the story? Customers<br />

appreciate convenience, a high-quality<br />

experience, and a good deal. Do your best<br />

to keep your theatre clean, consider ways to<br />

make your customers feel like their ticket or<br />

concessions purchase is a better value than<br />

your competitors, and use loyalty reward<br />

programs to keep customers coming back<br />

for more. Before long, you’ll be making your<br />

customers’ decision an easy one.<br />

MOST important<br />

4.39 4.34 4.11 4.02 3.87 3.77 3.55 2.73<br />

LEAST important<br />

Cleanliness<br />

of Theatre<br />

Convenient<br />

Showtimes<br />

Cost of<br />

Ticket<br />

Loyalty<br />

Program Rewards<br />

Type of<br />

Seating<br />

Promotions/<br />

Deals<br />

Cost of<br />

Concessions<br />

Special<br />

Events<br />

Women were 13% more likely than men to<br />

consider the cost of the ticket “Very Important.”<br />

Millennials valued special events the most,<br />

with 32% considering it an important factor.<br />

Parents with children 15.<br />

To submit a question, email AskTheAudience@ncm.com with your name, company, contact information,<br />

and what you would like to ask the Behind the Screens panel.<br />

14 2 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JULY 2017 / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

008-016.indd 14<br />

12/19/17 3:55 PM

For every stage of a film,<br />

comScore has a solution.<br />

Real-time demographic and<br />

Audience Measurement<br />

psychographic information<br />

Theater Effciency Solutions<br />

Exhibitor inventory and setlement management<br />

Box Offce<br />

Real-time geographic<br />

distinction<br />

Booking & Buying Sofware<br />

For distribution and exhibition<br />

Strategic Forecasting<br />

Long lead insight into upcoming films<br />

Comprehensive industry solutions for film<br />

exhibitors and distributors across the globe.<br />

comscore.com • learnmore@comscore.com

Post<br />

by John Hiscock<br />

When Steven Spielberg<br />

comes across<br />

a script he thinks<br />

is so timely it needs his<br />

immediate attention, he<br />

does not hesitate: He drops<br />

whatever he is doing to start<br />

work right away on the new<br />

project.<br />

That is what happened<br />

with 20th Century Fox’s<br />

The Post, which recounts The<br />

Washington Post’s handling<br />

of the Pentagon Papers<br />

drama of 1971, centering on<br />

such issues as press freedom<br />

and gender equality.<br />

The spec script from Liz<br />

Hannah was passed to him<br />

by producer Amy Pascal<br />

while he was working on the<br />

Warner Bros. thriller Ready<br />

Player One.<br />

“When I read the first<br />

draft, I couldn’t believe the<br />

timing,” he says during a talk<br />

at the Four Seasons hotel in<br />

Beverly Hills. “I knew the issues<br />

and answers in this story<br />

needed to be told at once and<br />

not wait two or three years.<br />

I need a motivational reason<br />

to make any movie and this<br />

was a story I felt we had to<br />

tell today.”<br />

The Post focuses on the<br />

unlikely partnership between<br />

the newspaper’s<br />

Katharine Graham (Meryl<br />

Streep), the first female<br />

publisher of a major American<br />

newspaper, and editor<br />

Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks)<br />

as they wrestle to publish<br />

the Pentagon Papers, a suppressed<br />

analysis of the government’s<br />

mishandling of<br />

the Vietnam War spanning<br />

decades.<br />

Most of the action takes<br />

place over just a few days,<br />

with the drama stemming<br />

from the Nixon administration’s<br />

efforts to stop the<br />

Post and The New York Times<br />

from printing top-secret<br />

information about the war.<br />

The script’s topicality in this<br />

era of “fake news” and journalists<br />

being banned from<br />

White House briefings resonated<br />

with Spielberg, who<br />

rushed it into production.<br />

He called on a who’s-who<br />

of film, television and theatre<br />

actors to fill out his cast.<br />

Joining Hanks and Streep are<br />

Alison Brie, Carrie Coon,<br />

David Cross, Bruce Greenwood,<br />

Tracy Letts, Bob<br />

Odenkirk, Jesse Plemons,<br />

Matthew Rhys, Michael<br />

Stuhlbarg and Bradley Whitford,<br />

among others<br />

“I certainly hope that<br />

our movie makes people<br />

aware of the kind of effort<br />

that goes into searching for<br />

and seeking and printing<br />

the truth,” Spielberg declares.<br />

“Print is becoming<br />

an antiquity and everything<br />

today is digital, but the<br />

truth is never going to be an<br />

16 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 16<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

Mortem<br />

Meryl Streep (as Washington<br />

Post publisher Katharine<br />

Graham) and Tom Hanks<br />

(as Post editor Ben Bradlee)<br />

star in The Post, directed<br />

by Steven Spielberg, shown<br />

on set with the actors,<br />

above left.)<br />

Photos: Niko Tavernise © 2017 20th Century Fox and Storyteller Distribution Co. LLC. Aall rights reserved.<br />

Streep, Hanks and Spielberg team up<br />

for drama based on The Washington Post’s<br />

friendly rivalry with The New York Times<br />

to publish the explosive Pentagon Papers<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 17<br />

016-057.indd 17<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

antiquity and is never going to<br />

go out of style.”<br />

Surprisingly, Hanks and<br />

Streep had never previously<br />

worked together, although The<br />

Post is Spielberg’s fifth collaboration<br />

with Hanks and he has<br />

known Streep socially for many<br />

years. “I have always wanted to<br />

work with her, but she was the<br />

wrong type for War Horse,” he<br />

jokes. “And I couldn’t find a role<br />

for her in Lincoln. But I knew<br />

Katharine Graham and when<br />

this project came to me I felt<br />

there was nobody on the face<br />

of the Earth that could play her<br />

better than Meryl Streep.”<br />

When I spoke with Streep,<br />

she told me, “I’d never worked<br />

with Steven Spielberg before<br />

and he’s such an amazing filmmaker.<br />

I’ve never, ever worked<br />

with anyone who has a more intuitive<br />

feel for how to construct<br />

a visual narrative. It was so exciting<br />

to go to work.<br />

“He doesn’t rehearse, so that<br />

was completely terrifying and<br />

destabilizing for me. But Tom<br />

knew that, so Tom was always<br />

ready and it made me step up<br />

my game, too. It was a joyous<br />

experience.”<br />

“So finally Meryl Streep<br />

and Tom Hanks had a chance<br />

to make a film together,” says<br />

Spielberg with satisfaction.<br />

“And I am just so pleased that<br />

I got to be the director of the<br />

debut of those two great actors<br />

onscreen together.”<br />

Katharine Graham became<br />

the Post publisher by accident<br />

when her husband, who had<br />

been left the newspaper by her<br />

father, died suddenly and it fell<br />

to her to take it over.<br />

She did so, showing strength<br />

and determination, factors<br />

Spielberg has always admired in<br />

women. “I have had a lot of female<br />

co-workers, as you know,”<br />

he notes. “I have had companies<br />

run by women, starting with<br />

Kathleen Kennedy, who ran<br />

Amblin for me for many, many<br />

years, and then transitioning<br />

with Laurie MacDonald with<br />

Walter Parkes, who ran Dream-<br />

Works for about 12 years, and<br />

then Stacey Snider, who ran<br />

DreamWorks for the next seven<br />

years. And I am probably looking<br />

for a woman to run this new<br />

iteration of Amblin Partners<br />

right now, because I am not going<br />

to be doing this job for the<br />

rest of my life.<br />

“I had a very strong mother<br />

who was more of a friend to<br />

me than a primary caregiver<br />

and I learned so much from<br />

her about managing relationships,<br />

especially managing difficult<br />

personalities. I just find<br />

that women are better attuned<br />

to creating a kind of ambiance<br />

and I think I am better working<br />

in that kind of culture than I<br />

am just working surrounded by<br />

guys all day long, like I was on<br />

Saving Private Ryan for three<br />

months.”<br />

Steven Spielberg is smartly<br />

dressed in a suit, collar and tie<br />

and he is thoughtful and unassuming,<br />

answering questions<br />

willingly. Critics have often<br />

taken issue with the sentimentality<br />

and emotional manipulation<br />

they feel permeates some of<br />

his movies, but he is one of the<br />

Western world’s most famous<br />

and successful filmmakers, with<br />

enduring hits like Jaws, E.T.,<br />

Close Encounters of the Third<br />

Kind, Jurassic Park, Saving Private<br />

Ryan and Lincoln to his<br />

credit.<br />

The man who has accumulated<br />

three Oscars, three<br />

Golden Globes, four Emmys<br />

and another 180 awards knew<br />

from the time he saw his first<br />

movie, Cecil B. DeMille’s The<br />

Greatest Show on Earth in 1952,<br />

exactly what he wanted to do<br />

with his life.<br />

“I was making movies in<br />

the house and blowing things<br />

up in the kitchen and putting<br />

fake blood stains on the walls<br />

and ceiling and blowing up the<br />

backyard with cherry bombs<br />

and firecrackers,” he recalls.<br />

“Fortunately, I had very liberal<br />

parents who somehow let me<br />

get away with it.”<br />

He made his first home<br />

movie when he was 12 and created<br />

his first feature film at 16,<br />

a two-hour science-fiction adventure,<br />

Firelight. He applied<br />

for admission to USC <strong>Film</strong><br />

School but was rejected three<br />

separate times. Instead, he went<br />

to Long Beach State, but ended<br />

up dropping out before he got<br />

his degree.<br />

“Had I gone to USC, I<br />

might have been holding lights<br />

for George Lucas instead of directing,”<br />

he laughs. “So maybe it<br />

was good that I went someplace<br />

without any competition.”<br />

Then, at the age of 23, on<br />

the basis of a 24-minute short<br />

called Amblin which was shown<br />

at the Atlanta <strong>Film</strong> Festival, he<br />

was signed by Universal, where<br />

he directed episodes of “Night<br />

Gallery” and “Columbo” before<br />

making the TV movie Duel,<br />

followed by his first feature,<br />

The Sugarland Express, and his<br />

breakthrough, Jaws.<br />

At the same time, his fellow<br />

would-be filmmakers, Francis<br />

Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese,<br />

George Lucas and Brian De<br />

Palma, were also beginning to<br />

make waves in the film industry.<br />

They have all remained friends<br />

for more than 50 years.<br />

“We just wanted to make<br />

movies and tell stories, but we<br />

didn’t think anybody would let<br />

us do it,” Spielberg recalls with<br />

a smile. “Francis was the first<br />

success when he broke through<br />

with You’re a Big Boy Now and<br />

then The Godfather. And then<br />

he became our godfather, giving<br />

us the encouragement to<br />

keep making those 16mm films<br />

and to not give up when people<br />

tell you no, but just find another<br />

door that will be unlocked<br />

for you.<br />

“Francis was a real mentor<br />

for all of us, but we never expected<br />

to succeed the way that<br />

we did. If we could have simply<br />

continued to tell stories on film,<br />

we would have been satisfied for<br />

the rest of our lives. We weren’t<br />

expecting any of this and it’s the<br />

last thing that we ever thought<br />

would have happened to us. But<br />

the most amazing thing is that<br />

we have stayed friends and collaborators<br />

and mentors for each<br />

other, ever since Marty and I<br />

met in 1967 and George and<br />

I met in 1968 and Brian and<br />

I met in 1968. It all happened<br />

a long time ago, but we stayed<br />

together.”<br />

Since those early days he<br />

has seen many changes in the<br />

world of filmmaking and marketing<br />

and he is intrigued by the<br />

opening up of the Asian market<br />

for movies. “The Asian market<br />

has very, very hungry people<br />

who are looking for entertainment<br />

of all kinds and not just<br />

tentpole, Marvel-type movies,<br />

but movies of substance and<br />

movies about something real.<br />

Those markets have opened up<br />

beyond anything I could have<br />

imagined 20 years ago. China,<br />

Asia and Korea have an incredible<br />

hunger and thirst for good<br />

entertainment. So the market<br />

just gives us more people to<br />

show our movies to.”<br />

He is also monitoring the<br />

growth of virtual reality and sees<br />

it as something for the future. “I<br />

don’t know when it’s really going<br />

to take hold and explode,”<br />

he says. “But the most shocking<br />

thing about virtual reality is<br />

when you finish the experience<br />

and you take off the goggles and<br />

you are back where you started,<br />

you would rather be in the<br />

goggles again. That is the most<br />

amazing thing about it—the<br />

shock is coming back to real life<br />

as opposed to getting lost in the<br />

digital world.”<br />

Spielberg is currently busy<br />

with promotional duties for<br />

The Post, but when they are finished<br />

he has a daunting list of<br />

projects awaiting him. He has<br />

almost finished Ready Player<br />

One, is preparing The Kidnapping<br />

of Edgardo Mortara, and<br />

will produce and direct the next<br />

Indiana Jones film. Then there’s<br />

a potential remake of West Side<br />

Story for which he has secured<br />

the rights after trying to get<br />

them 15 years ago.<br />

For his future projects he<br />

will once again be using the<br />

same collaborators he is intensely<br />

loyal to: editor Michael<br />

Kahn, cinematographer Janusz<br />

Kaminski and composer John<br />

Williams.<br />

“I have been blessed with<br />

some amazing collaborations<br />

18 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 18<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

throughout my career and I<br />

stick with the same people my<br />

whole life,” Spielberg notes.<br />

“Michael Kahn has cut every<br />

single movie I have directed<br />

since Close Encounters and<br />

John Williams has composed<br />

just about every score, including<br />

The Post. And Janusz Kaminski<br />

and I have now worked<br />

together since 1993 and<br />

Schindler’s List.<br />

“I found him because I was<br />

watching television one night—<br />

you can profit from watching<br />

TV if you are in my business—<br />

and there was a TV movie on<br />

that Diane Keaton had directed<br />

called Wildflower that Janusz<br />

photographed. And that was the<br />

beginning of our relationship. I<br />

hired him to do Schindler’s List<br />

based on this television movie<br />

he shot with Diane Keaton.<br />

“I have worked with some<br />

great cinematographers in the<br />

past, Vilmos Zsigmond and<br />

Allen Daviau and Mikael Salomon,<br />

but I have never, ever<br />

had the experience of working<br />

with someone who has also<br />

become one of my best friends.<br />

Janusz just finds a different<br />

way of telling a story with light<br />

and I leave that to him. He decides<br />

the color temperature the<br />

film should be, and I remember<br />

when we made Lincoln he<br />

found this amazing color temperature,<br />

so even though it was<br />

in color, it looked like it was in<br />

black-and-white, because there<br />

were no light bulbs in 1865,<br />

and so the film was relatively<br />

dark. That was a real risk that<br />

Janusz and I took, but that was<br />

Janusz’s idea.”<br />

In preparing for his movies,<br />

Spielberg differentiates between<br />

those that need his imagination<br />

and those that require detailed<br />

research. “A film which is just<br />

entertainment depends on my<br />

imagination to supply it with<br />

all of its needs, and a film that is<br />

historical fiction or completely<br />

true is a film that requires less<br />

imagination and a lot of research<br />

and fact-checking and<br />

confirmation of those facts,” he<br />

explains. “So when I did Lincoln<br />

and now with The Post, I probably,<br />

with Josh Singer and Liz<br />

Hannah the writers, did more<br />

research to confirm that everything<br />

that we were putting<br />

in the story actually happened.<br />

So my imagination would be<br />

a hindrance to something like<br />

The Post. I mean, I still have an<br />

imagination with a historical<br />

drama based on the pacing and<br />

the timing and where the camera<br />

goes and how I can more<br />

dramatically tell the story. But<br />

the facts are the facts, and in a<br />

sense I had to become a journalist<br />

to be able to tell the story in<br />

the right way.”<br />

In the past, Spielberg would<br />

take years off at a time to be<br />

with his wife of 26 years, actress<br />

Kate Capshaw, and their seven<br />

children—one by his previous<br />

wife Amy Irving and two<br />

from Capshaw’s previous marriage—whose<br />

ages range from<br />

21 to 40. “My family’s always<br />

come first and in the past when<br />

I didn’t make a movie for three<br />

years, I was raising my kids,” he<br />

says. But now that they have all<br />

left home he has more time for<br />

moviemaking. “As long as I have<br />

good scripts, I’ll keep working,”<br />

he asserts. “When I don’t have<br />

them, I won’t work. It’s always<br />

been that way.”<br />

During his 55-year career,<br />

Spielberg has produced more<br />

than 160 movies and TV series<br />

and directed 55 films, yet despite<br />

his success and the stack<br />

of awards he has accumulated,<br />

he has retained a wide-eyed,<br />

almost childlike enthusiasm for<br />

his work.<br />

“My body isn’t telling me<br />

to slow down yet, and whenever<br />

I find something new to do<br />

I get excited and become like<br />

a kid again,” he says. “For me,<br />

the fountain of youth is an idea<br />

or a story I have either come up<br />

with myself or read somewhere<br />

and I say, ‘I’ve got to tell that<br />

story.’ That’s what keeps me<br />

going and fuels my passion.<br />

And I’m constantly grateful<br />

that it does.” <br />



TO BUTTER?”<br />

Special layered topping orders increase cost and<br />

slow everything down, costing you sales and making<br />

a mess. With our patented POPIT N’ TOPIT integrated<br />

butter topper, built directly into the inside corner<br />

of the popper, even self-serve operations can reduce<br />

transaction time and save valuable counter space.<br />

Happy moviegoers get popcorn how they want it –<br />

faster, easier and with little mess for you. And,<br />

quicker topping time means more people served.<br />

Contact Shelly Olesen at 847-616-6901 or<br />

solesen@cretors.com for product details.<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 19<br />

016-057.indd 19<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM


PAYNE<br />

AND THE<br />


by Daniel Eagan<br />

An experimental miniaturization process that might ease overpopulation<br />

is the jumping-off point for Paramount Pictures’<br />

Downsizing. Starring Matt Damon, Christoph Waltz, Kristen<br />

Wiig and Hong Chau, it’s the latest work from director, co-writer<br />

and two-time Oscar winner Alexander Payne.<br />

With its science-fiction elements, use of visual effects and<br />

worldwide scope, Downsizing may not seem like an Alexander<br />

Payne project on its surface. His last film, the intimate, black-andwhite<br />

Nebraska, had a budget of $17 million and a shooting schedule<br />

of 35 days.<br />

Downsizing, on the other hand, took 80 days to shoot, and had<br />

a budget of $70 million. It has 85 speaking parts and 750 effects<br />

shots. Many scenes take place within a miniature world, but the<br />

story also spreads out to Nebraska, New Mexico and Norway.<br />

“When approaching this film, I had the fear, the concern<br />

that the machinery of it, and perhaps commercial pressures given<br />

its larger budget, could dilute its potency,” Payne says during a<br />

promotional tour. “You can’t let the machinery of the effects mar<br />

the quality of the acting. Or the intimacy of what’s being acted.”<br />

The director singles out production designer Stefania Cella,<br />

saying, “You can’t really talk about visual effects without simultane-<br />

Kristen Wiig and Matt Damon play Audrey and Paul<br />

Safranek, and Maribeth Monroe and Jason Sudeikis<br />

play small people Carol and Dave Johnson, in Downsizing.<br />

© 2017 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.<br />

20 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 20<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

ously talking about production design. Because you want to build<br />

as much as you can and can afford, and then use digital effects only<br />

when you have to.”<br />

Payne, who wrote the screenplay with his longtime collaborator<br />

Jim Taylor, wanted Downsizing to be his next film after Sideways.<br />

The team started writing the script over a decade ago, nurturing it<br />

through a long development process until the project was approved<br />

by Brad Grey at Paramount. (Grey passed away in May 2017.)<br />

“We had an itching to have the kind of political and social<br />

awareness that we had in Election and Citizen Ruth,” Payne says.<br />

“We’re not overtly political filmmakers by any stretch, Jim and I.<br />

But inasmuch as character enters the human arena often through<br />

politics, that’s what we’re interested in.”<br />

Payne sees Downsizing as a sort of culmination of his last six<br />

films and their themes, with the return of actors like Laura Dern<br />

and Phil Reeves.<br />

“Downsizing very much related to my other films,” Payne<br />

observes. “Almost disappointingly so. It would be nice to get away<br />

from the Midwestern white male for a minute. The schnook from<br />

Omaha going on some kind of journey of self discovery.”<br />

The film follows Paul Safranek (Damon), an occupational therapist<br />

at Omaha Steaks, who decides to undergo the miniaturization<br />

procedure with his wife (Wiig). Complications set him on an entirely<br />

different path, one involving genial Serbian smuggler Dusan<br />

Mirkovic (Christoph Waltz) and a Vietnamese political dissident,<br />

Ngoc Lan Tran (Hong Chau).<br />

“One of the joys of making this film was finding and working<br />

with Hong,” Payne says. She has earned supporting actress nominations<br />

from the Golden Globes and the Screen Actors Guild for a<br />

performance that is by turns spellbinding and bitterly funny.<br />

Often during Payne’s movies, the sense of watching a<br />

constructed narrative is replaced by the feeling that real life is<br />

unfolding before your eyes. Tran at one point describes a horrific<br />

Alexander Payne and Director of Photography Phedon<br />

Papamichael confer on the set of Downsizing.<br />







past—the loss of her home and family, imprisonment, a forced<br />

miniaturization as political punishment, the amputation of her<br />

leg—that has brought her face-to-face across a kitchen table with<br />

Paul, Dusan, and Konrad (Udo Kier), a renegade sea captain.<br />

Her eyes brimming with tears, Tran delivers a speech that stops<br />

time, that pulls her three listeners, and viewers, out of themselves.<br />

Rather than shooting the moment like a conversation with cutaways<br />

and complementary angles, Payne and director of photography<br />

Phedon Papamichael chose to film Chau centered in the<br />

frame, the camera pulling in slowly on her face through the speech.<br />

“That scene is one of the most extreme hairpin turns in the<br />

narrative,” Payne says. “How to get this foursome to Norway, where<br />

we wanted the story to go. It’s a little bit contrived, but we had to<br />

© 2017 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 21<br />

016-057.indd 21<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

sell it. Often when you shoot widescreen, you’re told not to center<br />

things, put her slightly off, one side or the other. No, we put her<br />

in the center, because she’s direct and moral, and it’s nice to center<br />

people like that.<br />

“And then she just does it. That’s it. She so understood the<br />

dialogue, the screenplay, that it was supposed to be funny and have<br />

pathos at the same time. I couldn’t do that, deliver a performance<br />

like that with the camera and the lights and me and the cinematographer<br />

all right in her face.”<br />

Miniaturized people in Downsizing.<br />

Speaking at this year’s Camerimage festival, Papamichael revealed<br />

that he too was crying at the end of Chau’s speech, and that<br />

there may have been tears in the eyes of Payne and the other actors<br />

as well. Papamichael also marveled about the “efficiency” of Payne’s<br />

shooting methods, how he could accomplish so much in one shot<br />

that other coverage wouldn’t be necessary.<br />

Join us to help<br />

more kids live.<br />

During the holidays, theater<br />

partners donate pre-show<br />

advertising space to run the<br />

St. Jude Children’s Research<br />

Hospital ® PSA. This trailer<br />

raises awareness of the<br />

St. Jude Thanks and Giving ®<br />

campaign message, “Give<br />

thanks for the healthy kids in<br />

your life and give to those<br />

who are not.” Join today to<br />

support our mission: Finding<br />

cures. Saving children. ®<br />

stjude.org/theater<br />

St. Jude patients<br />

Sarah and Azalea<br />

Thanks to our partners in the 2017 St. Jude Thanks and Giving ® movie trailer program.<br />

NEW STRAND Theatre<br />

West Liberty, Iowa Over 100 Years of Entertainment<br />

©2017 ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (31620)<br />

© 2017 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.<br />

Akira Kurosawa’s 1965 Red Beard, in which Toshiro Mifune<br />

plays a doctor in a rural medical clinic, was one inspiration for<br />

Downsizing. Payne also cites the movies of William Wyler, Orson<br />

Welles and Anthony Mann, praising their use of visual space.<br />

“I’m still working on classical filmmaking,” Payne says about<br />

his style. “Performance is the most important thing. If I’ve got it,<br />

what else do you need? I don’t want every film to have the same<br />

visual style, but in general I try to shoot as few shots as possible,<br />

and get as much in every shot, and cut only when we need to cut.<br />

I shoot wider lenses, because I like to see the figures in space and<br />

see the background. I like seeing man in space, and the connection<br />

between the two.”<br />

The director’s self-deprecating tone can obscure how expertly<br />

he elicits award-worthy performances from veterans and relative<br />

newcomers alike. “The midwifing part of directing,” he calls it.<br />

“Allowing the space or freedom or conditions for that to come out.<br />

That’s the main job of the director, I think. And not just with the<br />

actors, but with the technicians, to foment their creativity and give<br />

them the right environment. A performance like Hong’s requires a<br />

lot of relaxation and focus on her part.<br />

“When we make films, there’s almost no rehearsal. However,<br />

each day of shooting is in a way a rehearsal for the entire rest of the<br />

film because the actors are falling more into their characters and<br />

being at ease with the technicians, with me, with the shooting style.”<br />

Payne achieves that safe space in part from using his own life<br />

experiences in his work. Paul Safranek and his wife go to a highschool<br />

reunion at the same Jesuit prep school Payne attended. “It’s<br />

a nice place to set stories,” Payne says of Omaha, his home town.<br />

“I used to have a mentor, he’s now deceased, the Czech director Jiří<br />

Weiss. And he would say, ‘Oh my dear, in Omaha you have your<br />

own little Czech republic in which to make films, with its own<br />

mores. You can tell any story there.’”<br />

Payne gives a direct example: “The name Safranek. John<br />

Safranek sat next to me in Latin class for four years.”<br />

Self-effacing to a fault (and captured to a T by Matt Damon),<br />

the film’s Paul Safranek has been disappointed by a world that<br />

seems to operate against him. Like Candide or Gulliver’s Travels,<br />

Downsizing sets out systems for Paul to try. Materialism leaves<br />

him feeling empty, romance doesn’t work, hedonism leads nowhere.<br />

Religion, apocalyptic cults, politics, back-to-nature movements are<br />

all dead ends. In terms far more terse and simple than Payne uses,<br />

Paul must give up everything to make any progress.<br />

“He finds himself in service to others,” the director says,<br />

joking that “most people are selfish bastards. But many people find<br />

meaning in service to others. And indeed it’s given away cornily<br />

when he’s at his reunion, and he sees a banner, authentic by the<br />

way, that ‘the door to happiness opens outward.’ It’s right there in<br />

front of your face.”<br />

Still, Payne is reluctant to ascribe themes to his films. “When<br />

we do things, it’s at once unconscious and conscious. ‘Themes’ are<br />

often detected only in hindsight. It doesn’t mean they’re not present,<br />

but they’re not a priori. I just thought this was a good idea for<br />

a movie. It allowed us to make a movie about the times. The entry<br />

point was overpopulation, and by extension climate change. It’s a<br />

‘what if,’ a science fiction what if, that allows us to touch on other<br />

hideous elements in contemporary life.”<br />

A first-time father with a 12-week-old daughter, Payne admits<br />

that “the enormity of responsibility freaks you out a little bit.” He<br />

also says that he has no idea what his next film will be.<br />

“Of course I have four or five ideas,” he adds. “I’m also open to<br />

something I haven’t thought of. The next film, I want to do something<br />

genuinely different.” <br />

18-PRNS-31620-TnGThtr<strong>Film</strong><strong>Journal</strong>AdwAmc(3.25 22 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY x 4.5)RevCopy.indd <strong>2018</strong> 1<br />

9/26/17 2:54 PM<br />

016-057.indd 22<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

scn-film-journal-ER-170927-final.indd 1<br />

9/27/17 1:47 PM

Noted screenwriter<br />

Aaron Sorkin makes<br />

his directorial debut<br />

with star-studded,<br />

dialogue-rich,<br />

true-crime drama<br />

about the mother<br />

of all gambling dens<br />

by John Hiscock<br />

HIGH<br />

24 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 24<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

Michael Gibson © 2017 STX Financing, LLC.<br />

Jessica Chastain<br />

in Molly’s Game,<br />

directed by<br />

Aaron Sorkin<br />

(inset).<br />

© 2017 STX Financing, LLC. All rights reserved.<br />

It’s a highly potent combination: the Oscar-winning screenwriter<br />

Aaron Sorkin directing his first movie and the twice Oscar-nominated<br />

actress Jessica Chastain starring in it.<br />

The result is STX Entertainment’s Molly’s Game, based on the true<br />

story of Molly Bloom, a charismatic young Olympic-hopeful skier who,<br />

after a devastating injury, took a job running the world’s most exclusive<br />

high-stakes underground poker game, where the players included Hollywood<br />

royalty, sports stars and business titans.<br />

Its path to the screen started with a book written by Bloom, whose<br />

winning streak had come to a grinding halt when she become entangled<br />

with Russian mobsters<br />

and was arrested by<br />

the FBI.<br />

Sorkin was initially<br />

reluctant to meet Molly,<br />

nicknamed “the Poker<br />

Princess” by the tabloids,<br />

and did so solely as a<br />

favor to an entertainment<br />

lawyer he knew. “I<br />

was not expecting to be<br />

impressed. I thought I<br />

was going to be meeting a<br />

woman who was cashing<br />

in on her decade-long<br />

brush with celebrity and<br />

that’s not something<br />

I like,” he recalls during<br />

a conversation in a<br />

beachfront hotel in Santa<br />

Monica. Calif. “I don’t<br />

like gossip, I think it’s<br />

bad for all of us. And I<br />

certainly don’t like gossip<br />

for money. So I went to<br />

this meeting as a courtesy.”<br />

Chastain with co-stars<br />

Kevin Costner and Idris Elba.<br />

But ten minutes into their first meeting, which would be followed<br />

by many others, Sorkin knew he wanted to write her story and include<br />

many of the facts she had omitted from the book. “Boy, did I want to<br />

write it” he says. “This was like a blind date that you are not looking<br />

forward to, but you leave knowing that this is going to be the person<br />

you are going to spend the rest of your life with. Obviously I am not<br />

talking about Molly the person, but Molly the story. It was love at<br />

first sight and that had only happened once before, when I was having<br />

lunch with Stacey Snider, who was then head of DreamWorks, and she<br />

asked me if I’d heard about two guys claiming that Mark Zuckerberg<br />

didn’t invent Facebook and that it was them. An hour after that, my<br />

Linda Källérus © 2017 STX Financing, LLC.<br />

Michael Gibson © 2017 STX Financing, LLC.<br />

STAKES<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 25<br />

016-057.indd 25<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

agents made a deal for me to write The Social Network.”<br />

Sorkin, who won an Oscar for writing The Social Network and is<br />

a five-time Emmy winner for the TV series “The West Wing,” has<br />

a distinctive and unmistakable style, although not everyone is a fan<br />

of his witty, fast-talking dialogue and morality tales with politically<br />

liberal messages. Still, “The West Wing” is considered by many to be<br />

one of the best television dramas of all time.<br />

To the Hollywood powers-that-be, he is a bona-fide moneymaker,<br />

with hit movies going back to 1991’s A Few Good Men<br />

(based on his stage play). He followed it with Malice and The<br />

American President and created the highly praised half-hour series<br />

“Sports Night” and the short-lived drama “Studio 60 on the Sunset<br />

Strip.” Following his adaptation of Charlie Wilson’s War, he wrote<br />

The Social Network and received more acclaim for Moneyball and<br />

Steve Jobs, although his HBO cable drama “The Newsroom” received<br />

more mixed reviews.<br />

Reading Bloom’s book, Sorkin was worried about the implications,<br />

because he had worked with some of the people she had written<br />

about, including four very famous actors. Some were his friends.<br />

He spent the next two years hearing more of her stories and<br />

another year writing the screenplay. “I started out the same way I<br />

have always started out, though, with quite a bit more enthusiasm,”<br />

he recalls. “There was something here that was very special: I felt that<br />

where other people were seeing a story of glamour and decadence<br />

and sex and money and bold-faced Hollywood names, I was seeing<br />

a story set against the backdrop of those things but I was also seeing<br />

the story of an honest-to-God, real-life movie heroine—someone<br />

with a kind of quiet integrity and character that is rare today, even<br />

less common in popular culture. I just felt that I had found a hero in<br />

the strangest place and that even Molly herself didn’t realize that.”<br />

To avoid using the real-life names in the drama, he invented a<br />

composite character, played by Michael Cera, to replace the highprofile<br />

movie stars who were Molly’s regular clients and came up<br />

with a fictional lawyer he called Charlie, played by Idris Elba, who<br />

discovers there’s a lot more to Molly than was revealed in the salacious<br />

tabloid stories.<br />

But he had not even thought about directing Molly’s Game until<br />

producer Mark Gordon asked him. “I didn’t pursue that job,” says<br />

Sorkin. “I was asked to direct it and I am very grateful now that<br />

I was. I knew I would be risking humiliating myself on a very big<br />

stage because of the chance that the movie would tank, But I was<br />

willing to do that rather than risk the movie in someone’s hands<br />

being something else.<br />

“In other words, if this was going to go bad, I wanted it to be<br />

my fault,” he smiles.<br />

Although this was Sorkin’s directorial debut, he was by no<br />

means a novice on a movie set. “Because I have been a show runner<br />

on four television shows that I created, and being a show runner<br />

with a distinct voice, I have had experience,” he affirms. “And I have<br />

been on the set every day of every film that I have written, which<br />

doesn’t qualify as directing experience, but I think maybe I was a<br />

little bit further along than other first-time directors.”<br />

One of his concerns in deciding to direct the movie was gathering<br />

the very best cast and crew around him. “Charlotte Bruus Christensen<br />

was our DP, and Josh Schaeffer and Alan Baumgarten our<br />

editors, but particularly, who was going to play Molly and who was<br />

going to play Charlie? And would a Jessica Chastain or an Idris Elba<br />

be willing to work with a first-time director and how would that go?<br />

“And thank God they were willing, and they too felt like I<br />

wasn’t a first-time director because of the other places where I had<br />

had control.”<br />

In fact, his first meeting with Chastain formed the foundation<br />

of their mutual admiration society. “It wasn’t an audition, because<br />

Jessica didn’t have to convince me of anything,” Sorkin says. “I went<br />

simply to discover if Jessica Chastain—Golden Globe-winning<br />

Jessica Chastain, two-time Academy Award-nominated Jessica<br />

Chastain, who has been directed by Ridley Scott and Chris Nolan<br />

and Kathryn Bigelow and Terrence Malick—would be willing to<br />

take direction from a first-time director. Or would I be taking direction<br />

from her?<br />

“We sat down and exchanged pleasantries and about two minutes<br />

into the meeting, she said, ‘This meeting is stupid, you should<br />

just give me the part.’ And I said, ‘Yeah, okay, you’re right.’ And it<br />

went on like that from there. Jessica was directing me a lot of the<br />

time.” He laughs.<br />

On Chastain’s part, she had no qualms at all about working with<br />

a first-time director as long as it was Aaron Sorkin and he had written<br />

the screenplay. “I kind of feel like all the work I’ve done up till<br />

now has prepped me to do an Aaron Sorkin script,” she says before<br />

Sorkin briefly joins her for a reunion hug. “He’s a political filmmaker<br />

and in his writing there are these themes of justice prevailing against<br />

the odds. Which is why we’re so inspired by ‘The West Wing,’ A Few<br />

Good Men and ‘The Newsroom.’ I think he’s the best writer we have<br />

in our industry and you definitely feel his own signature rhythm and<br />

style. As an actor, you feel this music that’s within the language of<br />

great writers, and because Aaron Sorkin’s dialogue is so musical, a lot<br />

of the time I was singing musicals with Aaron.<br />

“We’d be on set and someone would say, ‘OK, we’re going to<br />

turn around, the camera’s going to turn around.’ And Aaron and I<br />

would sing, ‘Turn around.’ It was like a game we would play every<br />

day when someone would say something and we would just break<br />

into a song-and-dance number that would go on and on.” She<br />

laughs. “I’m hoping in the future he and I can work on something<br />

musical together.”<br />

Chastain also laughs about getting her brain to work at Sorkin<br />

speed, saying it helped that she had learned to perform the work of<br />

a wide range of modern writers while studying acting at Juilliard.<br />

But it was by no means an easy shoot. “In fact, it’s the hardest<br />

thing I’ve done,” Chastain says. “We did 47 pages of dialogue in the<br />

very first week, which I’ve never done before on a film. I thought<br />

Miss Sloane was a lot, and this one was double that. But it was like<br />

theatre, so we had a great time.”<br />

Sorkin has nothing but fulsome praise for his star. “Jessica straps<br />

this movie to her back in her very first scene, runs a full sprint for<br />

two hours and twelve minutes and doesn’t put the movie down until<br />

the end credits roll. That is called ‘carrying a movie,’” he says.<br />

Sorkin jokes that his directorial style is to say yes to people<br />

when they have really good ideas. Then he adds seriously: “Yes, I do<br />

like having the final say, but I am not looking for people to work<br />

with who will simply follow my instructions; I am looking for people<br />

who are better than my instructions. I am looking for people<br />

who will push back and say, ‘I think I have got a better idea.’ I want<br />

people who are bringing their own thing to the table.<br />

“In the editing room, there was nothing better than having the<br />

editors say, ‘We tried something, and it may sound crazy, but just<br />

take a look at it.’ And sometimes it is crazy and sometimes it elevates<br />

the entire movie. Those are the people that I want to be with,<br />

and that is true with actors as well as cinematographers, production<br />

designers, editors, cameramen and everybody.”<br />

Now that Sorkin has directed his first movie, he wants more.<br />

“I love working with great directors and I want to continue to do<br />

so. But I had a wonderful time directing this movie and I am very<br />

proud of what we did together. So I want to do it again. I would<br />

like to direct more movies.” <br />

26 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 26<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

A Magical Experience.<br />

Transform your theatre from a place to go to THE PLACE TO BE.<br />

unparalleled<br />


SPACE<br />


handcrafted<br />


world-wide<br />


a MYRIAD of<br />

custom options<br />

Contact us today.<br />

+1 662.539.7017<br />

www.vipcinemaseating.com<br />

101 Industrial Drive • New Albany, MS 38652

Zendaya co-stars<br />

in The Greatest Showman.<br />

by Rebecca Pahle<br />

Michael Gracey is the first to admit that The<br />

Greatest Showman is, “purely from a business perspective,<br />

not a sure bet.” A big-budget spectacle from a<br />

first-time feature director—that’s infrequent, but not exactly<br />

unheard of. What makes The Greatest Showman truly rare<br />

is that it’s not just a movie musical, but an original movie<br />

musical, one not based on existing songs or properties.<br />

“If it’s a jukebox musical, at the very least you know people<br />

are going to like the music. If it’s based on [existing] IP, you<br />

know there are thirty years’ worth of audiences who are going<br />

to see the film,” explains Gracey. “When you’re investing<br />

enormous amounts of money in creating a film, you want<br />

some sort of security. And there is very little security in an<br />

original musical [with songs] written by two guys who, at<br />

the time, had done a Broadway musical that wasn’t a huge<br />

success… It wasn’t so easy when I first wanted to work with<br />

them, because everyone was like: ‘Who are these guys?’”<br />

“These guys” are Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. When they<br />

met Gracey, they’d just picked up a Tony nomination for<br />

Photos: Niko Tavernise © TM & © 2017 20th Century Fox <strong>Film</strong> Corporation. All Rights Reserved.<br />

28 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 28<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

The Noblest Art<br />

Hugh Jackman is P.T. Barnum in this exuberant musical<br />

of the man whose motto was,<br />

‘The noblest art is that of making others happy.’<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 29<br />

016-057.indd 29<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

A Christmas Story: The Musical. Two days after the meeting, they’d<br />

already written two of The Greatest Showman’s songs, one of which,<br />

“A Million Dreams,” made the final cut. Flash forward, and Pasek<br />

and Paul have become the reigning golden boys of Broadway, with<br />

an Oscar and a Tony under their belts thanks to their songs for La<br />

La Land and Dear Evan Hansen.<br />

High-profile talent behind the camera was matched by highprofile<br />

talent in front of it: Michelle Williams, Zac Efron, Zendaya<br />

and the greatest showman himself, Hugh Jackman. And now, eight<br />

years after getting The Greatest Showman’s script from Jackman,<br />

Gracey and 20th Century Fox are about to find out if their allsinging,<br />

all-dancing risk is going to pay off.<br />

Director Michael<br />

Gracey and<br />

cinematographer<br />

Seamus McGarvey<br />

Regardless of its eventual box-office take, The Greatest<br />

Showman stands on its own as a bit of splashy, fun, crowd-pleasing<br />

entertainment, befitting both its release date—Dec. 20, right<br />

around the corner from Christmas—and its subject: P.T. Barnum,<br />

1800s impresario and inventor of the circus.<br />

Don’t let The Greatest Showman’s nonfiction roots fool you<br />

into thinking that Bill Condon and Jenny Bicks’ script presents,<br />

or intends to present, a straightforward, historical record of<br />

Barnum’s life. “P.T. Barnum wrote his autobiography multiple<br />

times, and he would burn earlier editions and destroy the plates,<br />

because he wanted to reinvent himself each time,” Gracey says. “I<br />

feel like this is the film that P.T. Barnum would make. He would<br />

cast Hugh Jackman as himself, even though he looks nothing like<br />

Hugh Jackman!”<br />

At the same time, The Greatest Showman doesn’t shy away from<br />

the fact that Barnum is a “deeply flawed character.” You could<br />

call him a self-absorbed charlatan, and you wouldn’t exactly be<br />

off-base. (Though Barnum never actually said, “There’s a sucker<br />

born every minute,” Gracey admits that it’s the sort of thing he<br />

would have said.) Jackman, then, was a necessary bit of casting:<br />

You need someone charismatic and fundamentally good enough<br />

that audiences root for Barnum to come out the other side of his<br />

personal struggles with his soul intact. Explains Gracey, “There<br />

are very, very few people who could play [Barnum] and do what<br />

[ Jackman] does in this role.”<br />

Factually speaking, The Greatest Showman hits the high points<br />

of Barnum’s life: Barnum starting a museum and filling it with<br />

human “oddities,” like the Bearded Woman (Keala Settle, a Tony<br />

nominee with a powerhouse voice) and the dwarf who would come<br />

to be known as General Tom Thumb (Sam Humphrey). A visit to<br />

Queen Victoria (Gayle Rankin) designed to boost his credibility<br />

www.nikotavernise.com<br />

among the snooty upper classes. A creative dalliance with superstar<br />

opera singer Jenny Lind (Rebecca Ferguson) that took him away,<br />

for a time, from his circus roots. In the spaces in between these<br />

historical anchor points, in Gracey’s words, exists “a healthy dose of<br />

imagination.”<br />

The goal, Gracey explains, was to take the groundbreaking<br />

spectacle and popularity of the original circus and translate it—not<br />

completely, but somewhat—into modern terms, creating a sort of<br />

“fantastic fairytale version” of Barnum and his story. To that end,<br />

Jenny Lind belts out not an aria but the sort of “pop ballad Adele<br />

would sing.” The musical number that opens the film, “The Greatest<br />

Show,” has Jackman trying his hand at a “hip-hop beat.”<br />

On the dancing side, the circus performers, led by ringmaster<br />

Barnum, strut their stuff in group numbers choreographed by<br />

Ashley Wallen. (Lest we forget, Jackman is no stranger to musicals,<br />

having toplined theatrical runs of Oklahoma!, Carousel and<br />

The Boy from Oz before starring in Tom Hooper’s Les Misérables in<br />

2012.) One particular number, a romance duet shared by trapeze<br />

artist Anne and Barnum’s upper-crust protégé Phillip, serves as<br />

something of a nod to Cirque du Soleil, sending Zendaya and Zac<br />

Efron soaring high above the circus floor.<br />

Gracey notes that, with the exception of a few moves, all the<br />

actors did their own dancing. “They signed up for ten weeks, and<br />

they worked so hard at doing these really complicated sequences.<br />

There were a few moments where it was such a big drama point,<br />

such a big hit, that it becomes a stunt as opposed to a dance step.<br />

People did get hurt, though. Michelle [Williams] cracked one<br />

of her ribs” in a rooftop ballet-inspired number. “She was in a lot<br />

of pain.”<br />

The musical numbers—dynamic, intricate, high-energy—are<br />

the most impressive part of The Greatest Showman. That’s why<br />

it’s something of a surprise to learn that they were the element<br />

of the film that Gracey was most confident about despite his<br />

lack of experience with anything near The Greatest Showman’s<br />

scale. That’s due to his background as a commercial director.<br />

Working on “musical-driven” commercials has been “a common<br />

theme running through my work,” he explains. “It was great<br />

to bring a lot of those lessons into the world of The Greatest<br />

Showman. Because it is my first film, I want to do it in a way<br />

that is unique and bold and memorable… I don’t want it to be<br />

what [audiences] expect.”<br />

In a further concession to modernity, all the circus animals in<br />

The Greatest Showman—the odd handful of horses, elephants and<br />

lions—were created using CGI. “Myself as a filmmaker, and the<br />

studio, were always very adamant that the way we were going to<br />

approach this film was without any animals,” Gracey says. “No one<br />

wants to repeat the acts of cruelty that went on at the circus in<br />

regards to the animals… The public consciousness and the world,<br />

fortunately, have evolved since then. Even though we were showing<br />

what was true in the 1800s, the way in which we went about it was<br />

with a contemporary approach.”<br />

That mix of old and new extends to Ellen Mirojnick’s costume<br />

design, which blends capes and tailcoats with more contemporary<br />

touches like Zendaya’s pink hair. In crafting the look and feel of<br />

the film, notes Gracey, “we would say, ‘This is what it was then.<br />

What is the modern equivalent to that?’ In terms of the wardrobe,<br />

we would ask, ‘What are the styles and cuts that are influenced by<br />

the 1800s? That you would see on the cover of Vogue?’<br />

“You take the best of the old and the best of the new and you<br />

fit it in this pocket somewhere in between the two. And that pocket<br />

is what’s unique to this film. That visual and musical signature<br />

becomes The Greatest Showman.” <br />

30 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 30<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM





Yaniv Berman<br />


by Maria Garcia<br />

Maysaloun Hamoud’s given name is drawn from a famous<br />

incident in the history of the Arab world that took place<br />

in present-day Syria. “My name is a story,” the Israeli-<br />

Palestinian filmmaker says, in an interview in New York City. Her<br />

debut feature, In Between (from <strong>Film</strong> Movement), will open in<br />

theatres on Jan. 5.<br />

The narrative bestowed on the filmmaker by her parents begins<br />

at the end of the First World War. In a battle that helped to<br />

topple the Ottoman Empire, the British-backed Sharifian Army<br />

took Damascus. The leaders of that army hoped to unite their<br />

people by establishing an Arabic state in Syria. In 1918, Emir<br />

Faisal, a general and an Arab nationalist, formed a monarchy, but<br />

by then the British had already betrayed their Arab compatriots;<br />

in partitioning what is today called the Middle East, the British<br />

promised Syria to the French. In 1920, at the Battle of Maysalun,<br />

just west of Damascus, French forces encountered those of the<br />

Arab Kingdom of Syria.<br />

“We lost, of course,” Hamoud says, “but we see it as the first<br />

brave resistance to colonialism of the Arab people. In a sense, the<br />

battle sowed the seeds of Arab identity.” And, with In Between, Maysaloun<br />

Hamoud sets out to redefine that identity in female terms.<br />

Her film is about the day-to-day lives of three Israeli Palestinian<br />

women, all with very significant names. Laila (Mouna Hawa, previously<br />

seen in Zaytoun), meaning “night” in Arabic, is a shapely criminal<br />

lawyer who enjoys Tel Aviv’s club scene. She shares an apartment<br />

with Nur (Shaden Kanboura), “light” in Arabic, a younger woman<br />

and a college student, and Salma (Sana Jammelieh) whose name in<br />

Arabic and Farsi existed before the era of Islamization.<br />

The names deepen the audience’s understanding of the characters,<br />

who are subject to double standards as women and as<br />

members of an ethnic minority in Israel. Hamoud, who holds undergraduate<br />

and graduate degrees in history, says that In Between<br />

overturns common stereotypes of Muslim women, and it does, but<br />

what American audiences may miss is that Laila, Nur and Salma<br />

▲ Maysaloun Hamoud (at left) directs Mouna Hawa,<br />

Sana Jammelieh and Shaden Kanboura in In Between.<br />

also represent subtle generational divides. “I am 35, and an older<br />

member of the generation that includes Laila and Salma,” the<br />

writer-director explains. Hamoud was 18 at the start of the Second<br />

Intifada in 2000.<br />

“Our parents faced the military regime, but we didn’t,” Hamoud<br />

says. “We grew up more freely and the Second Intifada made<br />

us more aware of our rights and identity as Palestinians.” When<br />

Hamoud’s parents came of age, Israeli Palestinians were not permitted<br />

to attend the country’s universities. They went to Hungary,<br />

then part of the Soviet Union, which for political reasons had a<br />

long history of supporting Palestinians in their struggle for statehood.<br />

Her father was attending medical school in Budapest when<br />

Hamoud was born.<br />

Nur’s generation, nearly a decade after Laila and Salma’s,<br />

reached maturity during the Arab Spring. “I can see that influence<br />

in the subculture we have now, in cinema, music and art,” Hamoud<br />

observes. “It is the same in all other Arab countries around us. We<br />

are no different from the Arabs in Beirut or Cairo, even though we<br />

live inside Israel, in Jaffa, Tel Aviv and Ramallah.” The filmmaker<br />

remarks that during her stay in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, she was<br />

reminded of Jaffa, the oldest part of Tel Aviv, where she has lived<br />

for the last eight years. “We have an art scene, and gentrification,<br />

too.” In In Between, which refers to the position of Hamoud’s<br />

characters in Arab society, the women’s apartment is in the Yemeni<br />

sector of Tel Aviv.<br />

Nur’s fiancé, Wissam (Henry Andrawes), on his first visit,<br />

has trouble finding the apartment, and calls her to ask directions.<br />

“Their conversation is one of the small but important ones in the<br />

movie, because Tel Aviv is built above several Palestinian neighborhoods,”<br />

Hamoud says. “The Yemeni quarter is one of many places<br />

32 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

Illustration courtesy of Aviyabc—Freepik.com<br />

016-057.indd 32<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

that was destroyed by the Zionist Israelis in 1948 to cover the<br />

origins. The quarter was a Menashiya neighborhood.” Nur tells<br />

Wissam that she is not far from the Hassan Bek Mosque, a Menashiya<br />

building that was not razed. While these layers of history<br />

and meaning, which refer to the Yemeni laborers who migrated to<br />

Israel for jobs, may only be understood by Arab and Israeli audiences,<br />

In Between has wider appeal, both because of its novelty and<br />

Hamoud’s skill as a writer-director.<br />

One of Hamoud’s favorite movies is Ridley Scott’s Thelma &<br />

Louise (1991), and she is pleased when others are reminded of it<br />

while watching In Between. (Look for an early scene in which the<br />

three characters are in Laila’s car.) Hamoud’s film is a women’s<br />

buddy movie, too, complete with the dark undertones of Thelma &<br />

Louise. Salma has Christian roots, and Laila a Muslim background;<br />

both are secular, while Nur is a practicing Muslim. Laila wears<br />

pencil skirts and revealing tops, and Salma, a gay DJ, is sporty and<br />

pierced. Nur is the new addition, and arrives wearing a hijab and<br />

abaya. “Shaden won Best Actress at the Israeli <strong>Film</strong> Academy,” the<br />

filmmaker notes, “and Mouna Best Supporting.” The characters are<br />

shockingly unconventional, even for Israelis; American audiences<br />

have never seen Arab women represented as they are by Hamoud.<br />

In the course of the film, Salma’s family is scandalized when<br />

they catch her kissing another woman, and Nur is victimized by<br />

an abusive Wissam. Laila has a flirtation with a Jewish lawyer<br />

but she reminds him that his family will reject her. She finds love<br />

with Ziad (Mahmud Shalaby), although later she is disappointed<br />

when he makes it clear that if they are to stay together, she will<br />

have to stop smoking and start dressing conservatively. “Laila and<br />

Salma have burned their bridges, and they have the label of sluts,”<br />

Hamoud says. “They are not really welcomed inside the society, but<br />

men like Ziad can travel and live with women and later take another<br />

woman to marry and be accepted in society and by his wife’s<br />

family.” With the exception of Nur’s loving father, and a male gay<br />

couple, Western women may find the men in the film repugnant,<br />

but Hamoud characterizes them as “weak.”<br />

In Between is not a flattering portrait of Tel Aviv or of Israel.<br />

Asked about the process of getting approval for her script in order<br />

to receive state funding, she replies: “Of course, it is complicated,<br />

but first, I am a Palestinian and they expected from me specific<br />

stories about the occupation and about the conflict. I like to think<br />

the story was so refreshing that they couldn’t refuse me.” At several<br />

points in the film, the characters are subject to mild forms of<br />

discrimination; one example is in a scene where Laila and Salma<br />

are shopping. “In our everyday life, we are always confronting<br />

racism,” Hamoud says. “Jewish Israeli audiences did not talk about<br />

these scenes, but they connected with the social and feminist<br />

aspects of the film.”<br />

Hamoud’s next project is a television series for Israeli TV. “My<br />

theme for the show is ‘in-between,” she says. She worries about<br />

having to do commercial work to support her filmmaking. “I want<br />

to be strong and resist and make my own movies,” she muses. “I am<br />

a female and I will continue to make films from my point of view.”<br />

As for portraying the lives of Palestinians in Israel, she points out<br />

that her movie represents a progressive stance. “I did not really<br />

want to include Israelis in the movie, because I think Palestinians<br />

can stand by themselves and speak among ourselves,” she says. “I<br />

think it’s an important step for all societies when they do not need<br />

to see themselves through the Other or among the Other.” <br />


Even with import tax, our prices<br />

beat the competition.<br />


SOUND<br />

Stage speakers, subwoofer, surround speakers,<br />

amplifiers, rack and digital audio processors.<br />

Starting at $5,000<br />


Works with every movie through<br />

sound channels.<br />

WE SHIP<br />


Stetson Snell • stetsonsnell@enparaudio.com •505.615.2913<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 33<br />

016-057.indd 33<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

y Rob Rinderman<br />

At street level, beneath what can<br />

candidly be described as a funky,<br />

multi-tiered pyramid structure that<br />

also doubles as a Manhattan residential<br />

apartment building (designed by renowned<br />

Danish architect Bjarke Ingels and<br />

colleagues), is The Landmark at 57 West.<br />

Debuting in mid-September 2017, this<br />

is the newest location of the Landmark<br />

Theatres chain, the only exhibitor<br />

with a national footprint dedicated<br />

primarily to showcasing independent<br />

movies. Landmark is also a marketer of<br />

indie films through its sister company,<br />

Magnolia Pictures, a theatrical and home<br />

distribution company.<br />

Landmark Theatres is part of the<br />

Wagner/Cuban Companies, a vertically<br />

integrated group of media properties<br />

co-owned by Todd Wagner and<br />

charismatic “Shark Tank” investor<br />

Mark Cuban. Wagner/Cuban also coowns<br />

production company 2929 Prods.,<br />

and high-definition networks AXS TV<br />

and HDNet Movies.<br />

The Landmark at 57 West features<br />

eight state-of-the-art auditoriums<br />

utilizing laser systems by NEC Display<br />

Solutions, projected onto wall-to-wall<br />

screens. According to the company, the<br />

decision to go with laser was predicated<br />

on its ease of maintenance, not to mention<br />

the ability to deliver a superior viewing<br />

experience unlike anything else on the<br />

market. GDC, with a world-leading<br />

digital cinema server installed base, is also<br />

a key vendor.<br />

Some of the posh auditoriums almost<br />

have the feel of personal screening rooms<br />

or home theatres, given their intimacy<br />

and small seating capacity. For example,<br />

several screens have approximately<br />

20 reservable, reclining lounger seats<br />

spread over just three rows. Talking and<br />

cellphone usage are, not surprisingly,<br />

discouraged.<br />

In today’s era of luxurious cinema<br />

seating, this location stacks up just fine.<br />

Spanish supplier Figueras and Michiganbased<br />

U.S. manufacturer Telescopic<br />

Seating provide the very comfortable seats<br />

at this location.<br />

At the film showing I attended in<br />

one of these tiny auditoriums, a theatre<br />

employee introduced himself in between<br />

the ads and trailers, encouraging guests<br />

to contact him during their time at the<br />

theatre if they had any questions or<br />

concerns. This is a nice, personalized<br />

touch lacking at most cinemas.<br />

Another feature, invisible to most<br />

theatregoers, is the use of theatre hearing<br />

loops for those with hearing disabilities.<br />

A hearing loop is an induction system<br />

that magnetically broadcasts sound<br />

directly via patrons’ hearing aids (with<br />

t-coils) or cochlear implants. The sound<br />

gets customized for individual hearing<br />

instruments. This technology also has<br />

the advantage of eliminating the need for<br />

checking out and returning headsets that<br />

typically deliver inferior, generic sound.<br />

“I don’t think there is a theatre<br />

anywhere in Manhattan that provides<br />

the cinema experience we are providing<br />

at West 57th,” says Landmark president<br />

and CEO Ted Mundorff. “It’s a beautiful<br />

building with terrific food offerings, a<br />

comfortable bar and superb customer<br />

service in a brand new space.”<br />

Speaking of the bar, when patrons<br />

enter the theatre they come through JD’s<br />

Place, which offers a full array of adult<br />

beverages, including craft beers, cocktails<br />

and an extensive wine list. It’s ideal for<br />

picking up a drink before or after the<br />

movie, but also attracts its own clientele<br />

of non-cinema ticket buyers. There’s no<br />

34 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 34<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

WEST<br />

SIDE<br />

STORY<br />

The Landmark at 57 West<br />

offers New York City<br />

an elegant,<br />

state-of-the-art<br />

cinema<br />

experience<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 35<br />

016-057.indd 35<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

need to go through ticket takers to enter<br />

and enjoy JD’s.<br />

“We are dedicated to presenting<br />

the features without distractions or<br />

interruptions that may occur in dine-in<br />

facilities,” continues Mundorff. There<br />

are many other dining options beyond<br />

just popcorn, fountain drinks and candy<br />

available at the concessions counter. As<br />

with other Landmark locations, there’s an<br />

emphasis on carrying products produced<br />

by locally based suppliers.<br />

According to Mundorff, “We always<br />

try to support the regional economy<br />

by selling local goods. Our head of<br />

concessions lives in New York City and<br />

had a great time selecting the many items<br />

we are offering.”<br />

At 57 West, some samples of what<br />

cinemagoers can purchase include pizza<br />

slices from Two Boots, a New York City<br />

pizza pioneer with a 30-year track record<br />

of success and a unique cornmeal crust;<br />

Eisenberg Gourmet Beef Franks on locally<br />

baked Pretzel Buns from Bronx Baking<br />

Co., and Bronx Pretzels, which can be<br />

dipped in Sir Kensington’s (a craft condiment<br />

company headquartered in Manhattan’s<br />

Soho district) Spicy Brown Mustard.<br />

If you’re seeking artisanal desserts from<br />

nearby makers, you have lots of options:<br />

Treat House Crispy Rice & Marshmallow<br />

Treats; Sweet & Sara Vegan Smores; Sugar<br />

and Plumm Macarons, and brownies from<br />

Fat Witch. Melt Ice Cream Sandwiches<br />

are also on the menu and available in seven<br />

different flavors, including Morticia and<br />

Elvis (yes, banana and peanut butter flavors<br />

are combined in these).<br />

Since the theatre’s immediate<br />

neighborhood location is slightly off<br />

the beaten path near the Hudson River,<br />

a number of blocks away from higher<br />

foot-trafficked neighborhoods of the<br />

city and its network of subway lines, the<br />

Landmark team has made it a point to<br />

proactively reach out to nearby residents<br />

to help drive attendance.<br />

“After launching a rather extensive<br />

advertising and publicity campaign, we<br />

had a few open houses offering the nearby<br />

residents a chance to check out their new<br />

neighbor. So far, we have only had positive<br />

observations,” Mundorff says. <br />

An auditorium at the Landmark<br />

at 57 West and, above, the lounge.<br />

36 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 36<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

Congratulations to<br />

Landmark Theatres<br />

on the Opening<br />

of 57 West!<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 37<br />

016-057.indd 37<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

we are looking to diversify our<br />

business, to become less reliant on the<br />

‘ATCineplex,<br />

movie product and be seen more as an<br />

entertainment destination for Canadians.”<br />

Sarah Van Lange, director of communications for<br />

the leading circuit of 163 theatres with 75 million<br />

guests per year (www.cineplex.com), is talking about<br />

“branching off” into initiatives such as The Rec Room,<br />

introduced on these very pages one year ago, Cineplex<br />

VIP and event-cinema offerings, eSports, as well as<br />

Playdium game centers and plans to bring “Top Golf”<br />

to the country (www.topgolf.com/us). “Canadians<br />

can look forward to more and more of these types of<br />

announcements and initiatives down the road.”<br />

Just in time to ring in the holiday season, Cineplex<br />

announced two major additions to its Scotiabank<br />

flagship multiplexes in Toronto and Ottawa, leading<br />

the way to what is arguably the hottest trend in<br />

38 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 38<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM



by<br />

Andreas Fuchs<br />

Canada’s Leading Circuit Unveils<br />

a New Entertainment Reality<br />

entertainment: virtual reality (VR). Within a short<br />

three weeks of each other, Nov. 17 and Dec. 7, to be<br />

exact, the proudly Canadian exhibitor unveiled VR<br />

experiences that were designed by two longstanding<br />

Canadian partners, IMAX and D-BOX.<br />

In 2009, making them one of the earliest adopters,<br />

Cineplex began deploying D-BOX motion technology,<br />

which is now in use at 88 auditoriums across the<br />

circuit, including many premium offerings with the<br />

newest D-BOX recliner models. Similarly, IMAX and<br />

Cineplex can look back on a partnership that jointly<br />

built 24 auditoriums across the country, including<br />

downtown Toronto.<br />

Located in the heart of Toronto’s Entertainment<br />

District, the IMAX VR Centre at Scotiabank Theatre<br />

features the latest and greatest technologies that allow<br />

visitors to step into other worlds. At its unveiling,<br />

Mark Welton, president of IMAX Theatres, noted:<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 39<br />

016-057.indd 39<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

“Together, we look forward to ushering in the next evolution<br />

of immersive entertainment and bringing the highly social and<br />

interactive IMAX VR experience to audiences in Toronto.” (For<br />

a detailed roundup of all things IMAX VR, please read our<br />

exclusive Q &A with Rob Lister, chief development officer at<br />

IMAX Corp., on the following pages.)<br />

A few weeks later, Claude Mc Master, president and chief<br />

executive officer of D-BOX, talked about putting their successful<br />

motion-seat technology at the service of VR storytelling at<br />

Ottawa’s Scotiabank Theatre. “We are extremely proud of this<br />

new venture and cannot wait for people to see just how immersive<br />

the D-BOX VR Cinematic Experience is… We have created a<br />

groundbreaking attraction the whole family can enjoy.” To live up<br />

to its name and cinema location, D-BOX in fact selected “Raising<br />

a Rukus,” a 12-minute adventure created by The Virtual Reality<br />

Company to showcase its movable offerings.<br />

According to D-BOX, this animated VR motion picture<br />

experience is the first-ever in-lobby attraction offering “the<br />

rich storytelling traditions of cinema” while being “creatively<br />

amplified” by immersive powers of virtual reality and D-BOX<br />

motion technology. “Our system is not a typical motion<br />

ride,” explains Michel Paquette, VP of marketing at D-BOX<br />

Technologies. “It is actually a unique experience that enhances<br />

the overall journey of moviegoers, both with a strong cinematic<br />

story and within a cinematic VR environment thanks to<br />

360-degree visual and audio. D-BOX helps to bring the sense of<br />

immersion to a new level.”<br />

On a purely physical level as well, D-BOX VR is all about the<br />

DNA of cinema. Paquette mentions sitting down comfortably<br />

and securely, watching entertainment for all ages, and driven by<br />

ease of use in operations. “Cinema DNA is all about storytelling.<br />

Good storytelling is the main reason why people go to movie<br />

theatres and D-BOX Cinematic VR continues along that line.”<br />

Just like D-BOX motion seats have been doing for many major<br />

films, one might add.<br />

“Today, VR is still in the novelty stage,” Paquette observes.<br />

“Nonetheless, cinemas are very keen on finding new ways<br />

of presenting these stories. Our cinema-friendly proposal is<br />

appealing to many exhibitors. We see a great opportunity for<br />

many more of those projects in the near term.”<br />

Feedback from customers and those tasked with assisting<br />

them has been positive as well, he has observed. “It is quite<br />

surprising to see how exciting content can create connections<br />

amongst people. Moreover, D-BOX is proving that VR can be<br />

monetized in the cinematic environment.”<br />

Yet, one could say that virtual reality is really all about an<br />

individual experience. “I am a big fan of virtual reality, personally,<br />

and its ability to put yourself into the movies,” Cineplex’s Van<br />

40 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 40<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

NEW YEAR...<br />

NEW IDEAS...<br />







www.tkarch.com 816.842.7552

Lange concurs. Recalling her first ride in the Batmobile at the<br />

IMAX VR Centre, “That is what that one was certainly able to<br />

do…it was pretty amazing. I tend to gravitate towards the more<br />

social experiences. That complements what is going on upstairs<br />

at Scotiabank Theatre as well, because going to the movies is an<br />

inherently social experience.”<br />

Bringing up multiplayer options of VR engagement such as<br />

Star Trek Bridge Crew, Van Lange believes “that our guests right<br />

now are also gravitating towards the more social virtual reality<br />

experiences as well.” Although she and three others players who<br />

assumed specific roles on the flight deck “did not succeed in<br />

our assigned tasks,” she chuckles, the experience was awesome<br />

entertainment.<br />

Another social aspect of the IMAX VR Centre is that<br />

friends can watch you from the back while you are roaming<br />

around with the virtual gear. “There’s a rather embarrassing<br />

video that was taken of me while I was driving the Batmobile,”<br />

Van Lange confesses. “As you are driving, you are hitting<br />

things, or running up over ramps. One of my colleagues caught<br />

me hooting and hollering about, but that is also part of the fun<br />

of virtual reality, you know?”<br />

Ten individual IMAX VR spaces were created on the groundfloor<br />

level of Scotiabank Theatre. Advances in mobile and online<br />

ticketing allowed for fewer ticket-selling stations and their<br />

relocation to the auditorium-level floor. Just as the VR action<br />

coincides with showtimes for the theatre, Van Lange explains<br />

that by “working with some of the leading filmmakers and<br />

content creators, much of the IMAX content in the VR Centre<br />

downstairs actually mirrors and complements the content upstairs<br />

in our movie theatres.” Case in point, the Batmobile ride was part<br />

of the “League of Legends” experience that Cineplex was able to<br />

premiere alongside the launch of Justice League.<br />

Operationally as well, there is more of that upstairsdownstairs<br />

dynamic going on. “A number of the staff from the<br />

theatre actually volunteered to just transition down and have<br />

their role in the IMAX VR Centre.” Special training, Van Lange<br />

continues, includes proper handling and thorough cleaning of the<br />

equipment after each play, teaching guests how to use the gear<br />

and making sure that all is safe and sound.<br />

An equally careful strategy is in place for taking the next steps<br />

into such virtual territory. Part of the plan for more VR at Cineplex<br />

is gaining experience with the D-BOX and IMAX offerings along<br />

with those of two other VR vendors that are operating at The<br />

Rec Room destinations: “Ctrl V” at West Edmonton Mall and at<br />

South Edmonton Commons (www.ctrlv.ca/locations); and “The<br />

Void” at Toronto Roundhouse (www.thevoid.com/faq). “While<br />

it is certainly burgeoning, the market for virtual reality right now<br />

is in its infancy still,” Van Lange explains. “We are testing and<br />

learning, seeing where our guests naturally gravitate to. In the<br />

theatre business, we find guests vote at the box office with the types<br />

of movies that they like. So, we are taking a similar approach here<br />

by letting our guests tell us which one or which ones of the VR<br />

options they like the best.” <br />

THINK<br />

VIRTUALby Andreas<br />

Fuchs<br />

IMAX Counts on Partners<br />

for a New Premium Experience<br />

‘A<br />

lot of people are talking about<br />

virtual reality,” says Rob Lister,<br />

chief development officer at IMAX<br />

Corp. “We have actually done something.<br />

We are out there, operating a pilot business.<br />

We are trying to understand how<br />

to make this platform successful. It is really<br />

very early. We do not want to raise<br />

anybody’s expectations, we are not giving<br />

models to analysts or talking about what<br />

this will look like if it is scaled out as a full<br />

business. Time will ultimately tell.”<br />

Beginning a year ago in <strong>January</strong> with a<br />

standalone location across from The Grove,<br />

the most popular lifestyle-shopping destination<br />

in Los Angeles, IMAX opened<br />

its second VR Center at AMC Loews<br />

Kips Bay Theatre in New York City in<br />

May. The first location in Asia followed<br />

in October, with partner Jinyi in Shanghai,<br />

China; and two more opened in<br />

November—at Odeon in Manchester,<br />

United Kingdom, and the IMAX<br />

VR Centre at Scotiabank Theatre in<br />

Toronto, Canada. (You’ll find more<br />

information in our story on the preceding<br />

pages.) By time of publication, New<br />

York City will have its second IMAX VR<br />

42 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 42<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

NOW A<br />


to the<br />



Deliver a flavor experience that’s unrivaled in the entertainment industry with<br />

Home Market Foods. Our innovative culinary team creates craveable products that make<br />

eating fun. With quality at our core, we are your go-to provider for all things “delicious.”<br />

Get rolling with Eisenberg franks at info@HomeMarketFoods.com<br />

www.HomeMarketFoods.com | info@homemarketfoods.com | 800.367.8325<br />

©2017 Home Market Foods, Inc. 140 Morgan Drive, Norwood, MA 02062-5013<br />

Untitled-2 1<br />

12/18/17 8:48 AM

location at Regal E-Walk on 42nd Street.<br />

You can access the full list at https://<br />

imaxvr.imax.com.<br />

Except the Los Angeles flagship location,<br />

the IMAX VR Experience is located<br />

within movie theatre destinations. Given<br />

the choice, we asked Lister whether the<br />

company would remain connected to<br />

movie theatres to have that prime association.<br />

“You hit the nail on the head in terms<br />

of what we are trying to find out. Our<br />

chief executive officer, Rich Gelfond, refers<br />

to being in a pilot period in terms of VR<br />

that is designed to find out the answers:<br />

Is this a good product in a multiplex? Are<br />

we bringing the right type of content into<br />

it? Are we at the right price points? Do we<br />

understand how to operate well? These are<br />

all questions that we are trying to answer.”<br />

Interest from exhibitors has been<br />

strong, Lister assures. “Because of our<br />

long-term relationships with virtually all<br />

the big exhibitors in the world, we can roll<br />

out a network very quickly if we decide<br />

that this is in fact the type of platform<br />

we want to build. Whereas we have the<br />

ability, I think we need six more months,<br />

at least, of information coming from these<br />

locations to fully inform us as to whether<br />

these are the places we want to locate the<br />

centers… Does it work better in a retail<br />

center or a shopping mall or another type<br />

of entertainment destination? I think we<br />

are going to try a few of these and see what<br />

works best.”<br />

What is already working, of course, is<br />

“The IMAX Experience” itself. This exclusive<br />

Q&A with Rob Lister is structured<br />

around the greatest strengths of IMAX as<br />

they are carried over into the world of virtual<br />

reality—one being the IMAX brand,<br />

the other the content. And there is all that<br />

technology, of course.<br />

FJI: IMAX spent a significant amount of<br />

time determining the systems that would best<br />

represent the IMAX brand and experience.<br />

How did you find your technology partners?<br />

IMAX VR is using an approach that is different<br />

from your cinema systems that are built<br />

in-house and with proprietary technology.<br />

RL: When you are dealing with thirdparty<br />

technology as we are with VR, the<br />

process becomes to try and aggregate bestin-class<br />

technology, and that could be a<br />

moving target. That can change from year<br />

to year, time to time. We may find a better<br />

platform. We may find a better headset.<br />

We start experimenting with free-roam<br />

VR, and we may find better technology<br />

there as well. My point is: This is an evolving<br />

platform, and we will always queue to<br />

Rob Lister<br />

best-in-class. Right now, we consider the<br />

very best to be the Star VR headsets from<br />

our partners at Starbreeze, which have a<br />

very large, close to an IMAX field-of-view.<br />

And the HTC Vive headsets we find make<br />

a very nice combo with some of the movie<br />

IP that we developed. On top of that, we<br />

look for other peripherals to add to the VR<br />

experience, such as haptic vests, next-generation<br />

hand controllers, D-BOX moving<br />

seats. We try and aggregate these together<br />

into an experience that is truly immersive<br />

and brand-consistent.<br />

FJI: If technology is in such a flux and<br />

rapidly changing in the world of virtual reality,<br />

does IMAX add a special ingredient to<br />

the process? Other than the company’s obvious<br />

expertise?<br />

RL: When it comes to the design of<br />

our centers and the look and feel of the<br />

pods that house the VR experiences, all<br />

that is quite proprietary. We developed<br />

that ourselves with the goal of creating a<br />

very social experience… From our standpoint,<br />

trying to build a true location-based<br />

entertainment center, we are focusing a<br />

lot on the social environment… In addition,<br />

we procure specialized content that<br />

is optimized for IMAX VR centers. We<br />

consider that to be a source of differentiation<br />

as well.<br />

We designed these centers almost like<br />

a hub-and-spoke model. The hub is this<br />

social center where you can watch your<br />

friends play. There are monitors and the<br />

pod themselves were built quite low to<br />

the ground so that your friends can stand<br />

around and watch you engage.<br />

So far, we have been adjusting to<br />

different environments. Most VR hubs<br />

have gone into multiplex lobbies. We<br />

are still very open, and as a matter of<br />

fact we are keen on trying out an actual<br />

auditorium. Screen number 16 or 17 that<br />

does not generate a ton of box office, we<br />

would like to try that option. We are quite<br />

flexible within the overall design. At some<br />

places, we installed as few as eight pods,<br />

going to as many as twelve. Regal E-Walk<br />

in Times Square will have a small number<br />

because the pods are complemented by<br />

Glo Station technology. This is our freeroam<br />

VR partner [https://glostation.<br />

com] at the Los Angeles flagship. Think of<br />

“Deadwood Mansion” as an escape-room<br />

zombie-shooting experience for multiple<br />

players. We are really encouraged about the<br />

results so far.<br />

FJI: Even with multiplayer games for<br />

two to six people at one time, the irony remains<br />

that moviegoing is inherently social.<br />

Instead of sitting with hundreds of people,<br />

virtual reality is individual, and at best you<br />

have someone watching you. Do you think<br />

eventually this may become as large as one<br />

hundred guests partaking in more of a movielike<br />

shared experience?<br />

RL: I think that the technology exists<br />

right now—and not just in movie theatres<br />

but in your home too—to have a fantastic<br />

experience watching a movie without the<br />

headset. Presented with great audio, visuals,<br />

and one that is quite social. While<br />

there can probably and will be further<br />

improvements in that area, I do not think<br />

that is where virtual reality needs to go<br />

to find success. If you look at some of the<br />

free-roam VR technology that is emerging<br />

right now, such as what The Void is doing<br />

[www.thevoid.com/faq], and Glo Station,<br />

you will see more and more people—two,<br />

four, eight, and I do think it will ultimately<br />

be even a few dozen people—all interacting<br />

in the same virtual environment… I<br />

think, unlike moviegoing, that’s an area<br />

where virtual reality has a ton to offer.<br />

FJI: With regards to branding, IMAX has<br />

some heavy hitting to offer as well. More than<br />

any one of the new VR players, to say the least.<br />

IMAX is well known worldwide for creating<br />

immersive experiences.<br />

RL: Whether relating to our large<br />

screens, with immersive audio, and we<br />

are really the inventors of the modern<br />

incarnation of 3D, we are building a<br />

laser system now—all the technology<br />

that IMAX built on the cinema side has<br />

been geared to create a more immersive<br />

experience that puts the viewer inside<br />

the movie. It is hard to think of another<br />

platform where you are placed more inside<br />

the content, and inside the experience,<br />

than in virtual reality. In our cases, we<br />

are really trying to err on the side of the<br />

most interactivity possible. So instead of<br />

44 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 44<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

going to an IMAX VR pod and watching<br />

a 360-degree video, you are interacting<br />

with the environment. You have a gun, you<br />

have hand controllers, you are impacting<br />

the environment and the environment<br />

is impacting you. The ultimate kind of<br />

immersive entertainment is one where<br />

you are literally interacting with the<br />

environment, and that is IMAX VR.<br />

FJI: The third element to IMAX VR is<br />

content. In addition to some great experiential<br />

tie-ins with new film releases from John<br />

Wick to Justice League: Dawn of Justice,<br />

does IMAX foresee digging deep into its<br />

library and offering some of the classic assets,<br />

such as nature documentaries?<br />

RL: I would offer a little bit of a<br />

twist on that thought. Rather than<br />

going back and wrapping existing<br />

movies into 360-degree videos, we can<br />

instead leverage our relationships with<br />

the content providers in creating VR<br />

experiences out of movies that are in the<br />

pipeline. For example, we just released<br />

Justice League, both the IMAX movie and<br />

the VR component, at the same time,<br />

working with our friends at Warner Bros.<br />

Our involvement in the VR experience<br />

was completely piggybacking off our<br />

involvement in the cinema experience.<br />

Being at the table in discussions about<br />

the Justice League film resulted in us being<br />

able to talk with the same creators and<br />

filmmakers about Justice League the VR<br />

experience. Having those relationships<br />

with studio executives and with filmmakers<br />

allows us to get involved at the earliest<br />

stage in terms of creating VR content<br />

around tentpole movies… Think of people<br />

like J. J. Abrams, and Christopher Nolan,<br />

who are big-time IMAX filmmakers.<br />

They are not the types of filmmakers that<br />

will just allow their intellectual property<br />

to be used by any new platform. Content<br />

creators really must trust the technology<br />

behind the platform, and we have<br />

engendered that very trust over years of<br />

working with them on the IMAX cinema<br />

side. I think that gives us a big advantage<br />

in virtual reality.<br />

FJI: We talked about content, branding,<br />

what type of locations and technology. What<br />

we still need to know about is the underlying<br />

business model. With a per-admission charge,<br />

is the setup very much like for a film? How<br />

does it work?<br />

RL: With the multiplex operators, it is<br />

a split revenue model [that] roughly breaks<br />

down in thirds. One third goes to IMAX,<br />

one to the exhibitor and a final third to the<br />

content provider. While you remove the<br />

multiplex partner at the standalone location,<br />

we take two-thirds…while paying<br />

rent and incurring operating expenses that<br />

we don’t get to share with a partner. Multiplex<br />

locations provide the space for us. We<br />

provide all the hardware and install it, we<br />

train their staffers, their staff runs the VR<br />

experience.<br />

FJI: Looking at the larger business model,<br />

talking about scale and bigger pies, do you<br />

foresee this becoming an affordable way for<br />

people to experience IMAX VR in the home?<br />

RL: I really don’t think that is the<br />

ultimate goal, honestly. That is not what<br />

we are looking for. IMAX is looking to do<br />

what IMAX does best, which is locationbased<br />

entertainment. We are about taking<br />

a piece of great content or entertainment<br />

and eventizing it, just like we do with our<br />

movies. You know, Star Wars: The Last Jedi<br />

is released very soon and it is going to be<br />

an event in IMAX. I just do not anticipate<br />

us to bring eventizing into the home. We<br />

bring people to our events. That’s really<br />

what the goal is here.<br />

FJI: And it sounds like a good one indeed.<br />

Thank you for the conversation. <br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 45<br />

016-057.indd 45<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM


Convergence Founder Russ Collins<br />

Reflects on the Relevance of Art Houses<br />

Convergence is a “coming together” of<br />

art-house cinemas. We don’t care if they’re<br />

for-profit or not-for-profit—all we care<br />

about is that they’re community-based and<br />

passionate about programming for the community.<br />

We think of them as “communitybased,<br />

mission-driven.” Independent cineby<br />

Bob Gibbons<br />

The timing was almost perfect. In<br />

the early 1980s, as Russ Collins was<br />

completing his graduate degree in<br />

Arts Administration at the University of<br />

Michigan in Ann Arbor, the Michigan<br />

Theater, a former movie palace from the<br />

1920s, was on the verge of being turned<br />

into a food court. The community saved<br />

it, but when volunteers tried to run it,<br />

they floundered. In 1982, they hired Collins,<br />

and he began his long career as its<br />

executive director. Now, fully restored and<br />

operated as a not-for-profit cinema and<br />

performing-arts facility, the Michigan<br />

Theater has been named the Outstanding<br />

Historic Theatre in North America by the<br />

League of Historic American Theatres.<br />

Along the way, Collins turned his talent<br />

for business and his passion for independent<br />

cinema into a continually expanding<br />

career. Today, he’s executive director of<br />

both the Michigan Theater and Ann Arbor’s<br />

State Theatre. He’s also artistic director<br />

of the Cinetopia International Festival<br />

in Detroit. And he’s the founding director<br />

of the Art House Convergence.<br />

The <strong>2018</strong> annual conference of the Art<br />

House Convergence takes place Jan. 15-18<br />

in Midway, Utah. Over four days, there are<br />

dozens of speakers, 20 educational sessions,<br />

several film screenings, and lots of opportunities<br />

for art-house cinema operators to<br />

learn from one another. In a wide-ranging<br />

conversation, Collins began by talking<br />

about the conference’s progress since its<br />

inception.<br />

On the beginnings<br />

of the conference<br />

In 2006, Sundance invited 14 respected<br />

art-house cinemas from around the country<br />

to join them at the Sundance <strong>Film</strong><br />

Festival to celebrate the 25th anniversary<br />

of the Sundance Institute. We were one<br />

of the theatres selected. We got together<br />

with our colleagues and had a wonderful<br />

time, sharing problems and solutions and<br />

war stories. Sundance invited us back the<br />

second year so we could continue the dialogue.<br />

In the third year—2008—we went<br />

off on our own and started the first Art<br />

House Convergence conference.<br />

That first year, twenty-seven people<br />

attended. Last year, we registered 620<br />

delegates; this year, we’re expecting to<br />

have to turn people away. There have been<br />

many people who’ve attended our conferences<br />

and said: “I want to start a community-based,<br />

mission-driven cinema in my<br />

home town”—and they did. But I can’t<br />

think of any established theatres that have<br />

come to the conference and have gone out<br />

of business.<br />

On this year’s<br />

conference themes<br />

Russ Collins<br />

We’re focusing on two important legal<br />

and ethical issues. One is how well arthouse<br />

cinemas do—or do not—deal with<br />

diversity and inclusion. The other has recently<br />

dominated weeks of the news cycle:<br />

harassment and intimidation—particularly<br />

sexual harassment and intimidation. But<br />

we’ll also be talking about what theatres do<br />

in terms of programming, marketing and<br />

operations.<br />

The role of the conference is to gather<br />

people who are passionate about cinemas and<br />

local communities and willing to share information<br />

about how they’re achieving success<br />

and how they can do things better. They help<br />

each other through their collective experiences;<br />

they discuss their successes and their<br />

failures honestly with their colleagues.<br />

The conference has exclusively a cinema<br />

focus. But the ethos and the history of<br />

performing arts—which as late as the early<br />

20th century were exclusively commercial<br />

enterprises and then gradually developed<br />

both a commercial and cultural dynamic—<br />

provide a good model for cinema exhibition.<br />

Art-house cinemas often are operated<br />

as highly commercial enterprises—and<br />

simultaneously as institutions that focus<br />

intently on artistic and cultural aspects.<br />

On learning<br />

from other performing arts<br />

My background and training are in<br />

nonprofit performing arts, and what I’ve<br />

contributed to art-house cinema is helping<br />

them to think of themselves as a cultural<br />

organization that is of great benefit to their<br />

local community. That’s how nonprofit arts<br />

organizations function—as communitybased<br />

philanthropic organizations. And<br />

since cinemas have the same pressures and<br />

face the same issues as other performing<br />

arts, I used to wonder why there wasn’t<br />

that same thinking going on for cinema.<br />

We often consider cinema as exclusively<br />

a commercial business. But we don’t do<br />

that with music, for example. With music,<br />

we understand there’s a commercial part—<br />

and another part that’s more cultural. And<br />

there are parts in between. And it seems to<br />

me that cinema should be thought about<br />

the same way. That’s especially important<br />

in smaller towns, where cinemas may need<br />

community support—beyond just ticket<br />

sales—to survive. That’s where this notion<br />

of culturally based cinema programs<br />

exists—and that’s part of what the Art<br />

House Convergence is about.<br />

On the enduring purpose<br />

of the Art House Convergence<br />

46 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 46<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

ma—art house cinema—it’s the same thing.<br />

The purpose of the Art House Convergence<br />

is to increase the quantity and<br />

quality of art-house cinemas in North<br />

America. Every year, about 900 movies<br />

are released into the North American<br />

market—and each art house is a curator<br />

to a certain degree. How do we match the<br />

films available with the interests and tastes<br />

of the communities we serve? That doesn’t<br />

always mean showing them the films that<br />

they “want”; sometimes, it’s showing them<br />

the films they need to see—so we have to<br />

be a little ahead of the community’s curve<br />

in terms of taste, but we can’t be too far<br />

ahead, because if we do we can leave the<br />

audience behind. It’s a tricky balancing act.<br />

Quality has also to do with operating<br />

the theatre. How well do we inform our<br />

community about the films we’re playing?<br />

How good is our customer service? How<br />

good is the image on the screen? How<br />

good does the audio sound? Are we being<br />

a good curator? Are we thinking about that<br />

long arc of quality—and not just the short<br />

term? Do we know—and are we responding<br />

effectively to—our community? Those<br />

are the qualitative aspects we’re focusing<br />

on. In terms of quantity, we’re convinced<br />

the number of independent cinemas is increasing<br />

and attendance is stable—but success<br />

is in the hands of the local art-house<br />

operators and in how effectively their communities<br />

support them.<br />

On being not-for-profit<br />

There can be certain fiscal advantages<br />

to being a nonprofit, mostly because you’re<br />

compelled to engage with your community<br />

and have your community engage with<br />

you. But if someone becomes a nonprofit<br />

simply as a tax dodge, they typically won’t<br />

succeed, ultimately.<br />

If you look around the country, many<br />

places don’t have an independent or arthouse<br />

cinema, so I think there’s a lot of<br />

opportunity for growth. The thing that<br />

independent cinema can and should do<br />

best is to think about themselves as a community<br />

cultural institution—even if they’re<br />

a commercial business. That requires them<br />

to get involved in their community—be<br />

members of the Chamber of Commerce,<br />

volunteer for community service projects,<br />

serve on boards, be thought of as a community<br />

leader. All of that helps people see<br />

them not just as the local movie house, but<br />

as someone who is thinking carefully about<br />

the quality of the community and how the<br />

cinema can broadly benefit the community.<br />

That’s how they can remain vital.<br />

In the “digital cinema panic era,” many<br />

small for-profit and not-for-profit cinemas<br />

discovered their communities really loved<br />

them because when they said, “We’re<br />

going to go out of business because we<br />

can’t afford a digital projector,” in many<br />

places around the country their community<br />

stepped up and supported them. The<br />

cinemas were surprised. But I think that’s<br />

how an independent cinema can continue<br />

to thrive—by being connected to their<br />

community.<br />

On what constitutes success<br />

for art-house cinemas<br />

Maintaining your passion and paying<br />

your bills are important, but an independent<br />

theatre should be run with passion;<br />

it has to be motivated by passion before<br />

profit. It’s not that you don’t want to make<br />

money; every business—whether it’s forprofit<br />

or not-for-profit—has to end up<br />

taking in more money than it spends. But<br />

art-house cinemas are businesses of passion<br />

and they can succeed in any town, large<br />

or small, if they have the right group of<br />

people who are smart about business—and<br />

dedicated to their community.<br />

On the difference<br />

between large chains<br />

and small independents<br />

If you’re a national chain, you make your<br />

money by applying a formula broadly across<br />

a wide geographical area. There are national<br />

chains in all kinds of businesses—not just<br />

cinema—and they’re run by smart businesspeople.<br />

But there are also very successful<br />

local businesses and they usually distinguish<br />

themselves by being uniquely connected to<br />

their community. My boss is my community,<br />

it’s not someone in an office in some<br />

major city. I don’t think that makes me a<br />

better cinema, but it does mean that I can<br />

operate by a different business model.<br />

My uncle ran a hardware store in a<br />

small town in southern Missouri at a time<br />

when Walmart was putting local hardware<br />

stores out of business. He did just fine in<br />

the face of their challenge because if people<br />

had an issue, they knew they could talk<br />

to my Uncle Bill. He knew them, he could<br />

relate to their problems, he was involved<br />

in his community. He’d be fair, but he was<br />

also a good businessman. Large cinemas<br />

do fine, but some people really want that<br />

special local connection—and we also play<br />

many movies they can’t really find anywhere<br />

else.<br />

On the importance<br />

of learning the language<br />

of film<br />

Young people today are much more<br />

savvy in terms of cinema repertoire because<br />

such a vast array of films are available for<br />

them to watch on Blu-ray, DVD, at their<br />

local library and via streaming. Two-yearolds<br />

have Disney movies memorized from<br />

watching them on iPads. Even people who<br />

like to go to the cinema typically see more<br />

movies at home on their TV or computer<br />

screen than they see in a theatre. That’s<br />

been true for many years. Still, most people<br />

are generally ignorant about the nature of<br />

cinema language. It’s like they’ve had a lot<br />

of stories read to them but they’ve never<br />

learned to read or understand English<br />

grammar. Generally, people understand the<br />

stories movies tell, but they don’t understand<br />

how the art form is composed or the<br />

techniques used to tell the story.<br />

That cinema “grammar” is often taught<br />

in colleges, in film-appreciation courses,<br />

but a small minority of students take<br />

those—and it’s really too late. Because<br />

most people get most of their information<br />

from audiovisual media—TV, phones,<br />

computer and theatre screens—we should<br />

be teaching the grammar of that media<br />

at a very young age. Children need to understand<br />

how that media tells its stories,<br />

communicates its messages, convinces<br />

them to make decisions. They need that<br />

understanding to make intelligent choices<br />

not just in the movies they see, but in the<br />

way they live their lives.<br />

On the future<br />

Cinema—and the media in general—<br />

are mature businesses, so we have to be<br />

constantly aggressive and thoughtful and<br />

imaginative about how we pursue our<br />

business so we can stay in the market and<br />

continue to be an effective service to our<br />

customers. But human beings are creatures<br />

of stories; our brains are organized around<br />

stories and there’s something primal and<br />

profound in sitting in a darkened room full<br />

of strangers and having a story presented<br />

by flickering lights. It’s primal desire. Cinema<br />

fulfills that desire. Plus, people like to<br />

go out and one of the best places to experience<br />

quality stories is in a well-run movie<br />

theatre. I like to think that the Art House<br />

Convergence enables and encourages both<br />

that primal desire and the chance to get<br />

out of the house and escape our day-today<br />

lives for a few hours. And that’s a very<br />

good thing! <br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 47<br />

016-057.indd 47<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

cannot change the world<br />

if you don’t like each other.”<br />

‘You<br />

A fine guiding principle for<br />

a nonprofit organization, a political<br />

activist group, a self-help seminar…but<br />

a production company? You bet—when<br />

that production company is Participant<br />

Media, which since 2004 has been<br />

bringing movies that seek to affect social<br />

change to the big screen.<br />

“Compassion,” continues CEO David<br />

Linde, “is central to the perspective<br />

of Participant. We believe in a<br />

compassionate world. And when you’re<br />

talking about 75-plus movies and over<br />

two billion dollars’ worth of box office,<br />

I would say that there are a lot of people<br />

who agree with us.”<br />

A scan down Participant’s filmography<br />

backs Linde up. Commercial and<br />

critical successes—Lincoln; The Help;<br />

Contagion; Food, Inc.; and this year’s<br />

Wonder, just to name a few—abound.<br />

There are Oscar winners—like Tom Mc-<br />

Carthy’s Best Picture winner Spotlight,<br />

about the Boston Globe’s investigation<br />

into the Catholic Church’s child molestation<br />

cover-up, and Best Documentary<br />

Feature winners CITIZENFOUR, The<br />

Cove and An Inconvenient Truth. Come<br />

the 90th Annual Academy Awards on<br />

March 4, they could have some new<br />

brethren: Steven Spielberg’s The Post;<br />

Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk’s documentary<br />

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to<br />

Power; and Chilean drama A Fantastic<br />

Woman, from director Sebastián Lelio,<br />

are all awards-season hopefuls.<br />

Joshua Oppenheimer’s documentary<br />


IN GOOD<br />

Participant Media Spurs Social Change<br />

Through the Power of the Movies<br />

by Rebecca Pahle<br />

duo The Act of Killing and The Look of Silence. Breathe, Andy Serkis’ biopic of Robin<br />

Cavendish (Andrew Garfield), a crusader for the disabled. Based-on-a-true-story<br />

actioner Deepwater Horizon. Spielberg’s Cold War drama Bridge of Spies. The films<br />

Participant has (ahem) participated in<br />

run the gamut, but they have one thing<br />

in common: a shared determination to,<br />

in the words of president of documentary<br />

film and television Diane Weyermann,<br />

“tell stories that are engaging and can<br />

reach people, and that illuminate issues<br />

that may or may not be in the spotlight.”<br />

“One thing that film can do is<br />

A scene in Kenya from Human Flow.<br />

inspire,” elaborates Jonathan King,<br />

Participant’s president of narrative film<br />

and television. “In a climate where<br />

political division is especially acute, we look for ways to draw people together. There’s<br />

a movie out right now called Wonder”—about the experience of a young boy (Room’s<br />

Jacob Tremblay) with facial differences who goes to a public school for the first time—<br />

“that’s really about embracing differences and relating to people who may be different<br />

than you are, and looking at them with compassion. That kind of movie is really<br />

resonant with audiences. It is completely in line with our mission.”<br />

Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep<br />

in The Post.<br />

Felicity Jones as Ruth Bader Ginsburg<br />

in On the Basis of Sex.<br />

48 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 48<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

CEO David Linde (center) with Participant Media executives Jonathan King and Diane Weyermann.<br />

In that same vein, Weyermann cites<br />

upcoming Sundance Selects/IFC <strong>Film</strong>s<br />

release Far from the Tree, about families<br />

where parents and children are profoundly<br />

different from one another due to Down<br />

Syndrome, dwarfism, being transgender<br />

or some other cause. “It’s really a film<br />

about love and acceptance and compassion.<br />

In this polarized environment we<br />

find ourselves in, where people don’t speak<br />

to each other and there’s a lot of fear of<br />

the ‘other,’ these are really important films<br />

to get out there… We’re all looking for<br />

ways to be more positive and more hopeful<br />

and more inspired, rather than being<br />

pulled down by division and fear.”<br />

That hunt for “common ground,”<br />

King explains, is one of Participant’s<br />

primary raisons d’etre. It’s also something<br />

that “in some ways, film as an art form is<br />

uniquely suited to do.”<br />

In the end, it all boils down to “spinach.”<br />

That’s the word that Linde uses to describe the sort of films Participant doesn’t want<br />

to make: chock-full of positive messages, but dry, dull and preachy. You may not want<br />

to eat it, but hey, it’s good for you!<br />

That is emphatically not the Participant way. “We don’t make spinach,” Linde says.<br />

“We’re making movies. And television<br />

shows and digital short film content.<br />

There are lots of people out there making<br />

spinach. That’s not us.” Story must<br />

come first, always. “People want to be<br />

entertained. They want to be thrilled.”<br />

Or, put another way: “You can’t change<br />

the world if nobody sees your movie.”<br />

King cites Mimi Leder’s On the Basis<br />

of Sex, out later in <strong>2018</strong>, about the efforts<br />

of young lawyer Ruth Bader Ginsburg<br />

A scene from A Fantastic Woman.<br />

(Felicity Jones) and her husband Marty<br />

(Armie Hammer) to bring gender<br />

discrimination cases before the Supreme Court. “It wouldn’t have made for a good<br />

movie if it hadn’t been a really great, surprising, engaging, emotional story.”<br />

Participant also teamed with Steven Spielberg to tackle gender equality in The Post.<br />

Owen Wilson, Jacob Tremblay,<br />

Izabela Vidovic and Julia Roberts<br />

in Wonder.<br />

Al Gore in An Inconvenient Sequel:<br />

Truth to Power.<br />

Photos courtesy Participant Media<br />

016-057.indd 49<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

On one level, it’s a ripping yarn about<br />

a key moment in American history: the<br />

publication of the Pentagon Papers.<br />

On another, it’s about journalism and<br />

freedom of the press. On yet a third,<br />

says Linde, it’s “a fantastic story about<br />

a woman [Washington Post publisher<br />

Katharine Graham, played by Meryl<br />

Streep] who is realizing her importance<br />

and relevance in the world.” With those<br />

two films, Participant is “engaging in<br />

conversation about great woman leaders.<br />

This year and next year. And people<br />

who are going to be seeing On the Basis<br />

of Sex are going to be reminded about<br />

The Post. It’s a very organic process of<br />

conversation.”<br />

With these two films about “strong<br />

women in professions that are primarily<br />

male-dominated,” Weyermann points<br />

out that Participant has landed “in the<br />

right zeitgeist… [The Post and On the<br />

Basis of Sex] land right at the time when<br />

people can really relate to them and<br />

respond to them. That’s something we<br />

always look at: What stories are cresting?<br />

What’s going on in the zeitgeist?”<br />

Linde calls this “catching moments.”<br />

“Moments” caught in Participant films<br />

over the last few years include: the global<br />

refugee crisis (Ai Weiwei’s Human Flow),<br />

the leaking of classified government<br />

information (Laura Poitras’ CITIZEN-<br />

FOUR), the Arab Spring movement<br />

(Jehane Noujaim’s The Square) and cyberterrorism<br />

(Alex Gibney’s Zero Days).<br />

John Goodman in the Participantbacked<br />

<strong>2018</strong> thriller, Captive State.<br />

Through always looking ahead to<br />

what issues people are hungry to engage<br />

with, Participant Media, through its<br />

films, sparks conversation. For Linde,<br />

King and Weyermann, it’s not just a<br />

matter of making films, handing them<br />

off to the distributors and then moving<br />

on to the next one. For many of its films,<br />

Participant partners with NGOs in ways<br />

that raise awareness and prompt real<br />

change. For example, with An Inconvenient<br />

Sequel: Truth to Power, Participant<br />

partnered with the Climate Reality<br />

Project, the Sierra Club, the Natural<br />

Resources Defense Council and the Environmental<br />

Defense Fund to help combat<br />

climate change. An online “action<br />

center” used social media to push out<br />

videos that were seen 75 million times.<br />

“We have a responsibility and a<br />

mission to engage people around the<br />

subject of each movie,” Linde explains.<br />

“It’s not our job to market them into the<br />

movie theatre. We’re not a distributor.<br />

That’s what our partner does. But we’re<br />

embracing a much broader spectrum<br />

of partners around a movie than a<br />

typical distributor would. They have<br />

their stakeholders and partners and<br />

audience, and we have our stakeholders<br />

and partners and audience. And we<br />

merge them together over the life of the<br />

film to create as much awareness of the<br />

movie and the issue as possible. The film<br />

distributor actions them into the movie<br />

theatre. Our NGO partners action them<br />

to actual action. And you’re building<br />

this very organic, dynamic life around a<br />

movie”—one that extends well beyond its<br />

theatrical release.<br />

“You’d better bring a lot to the table,<br />

if you’re going to survive in the media<br />

business,” Linde adds. “You’d better<br />

be distinct about what it is that you’re<br />

doing. And this company is unique, and<br />

it brings a lot to the table. And that’s<br />

how we make ourselves different.”<br />

Participant’s unique approach is<br />

what the distributors want, what the<br />

filmmakers want, what the NGOs<br />

want…and also, increasingly, what<br />

consumers want as well. For some<br />

people, Linde notes, seeing a movie is<br />

just seeing a movie, “and that’s fine.”<br />

But by and large, he argues that we’re<br />

in the “age of the conscious consumer,”<br />

with people of all ages and backgrounds<br />

showing an increasing interest in how<br />

they can use their buying power to make<br />

a positive impact on the world. These<br />

consumers “are applying a new value<br />

filter to their purchases. And that’s just<br />

a fact. TOMS shoes and KIND bars<br />

wouldn’t exist and be successful if that<br />

wasn’t one of the momentum changes<br />

going on.”<br />

“Our task,” says Weyermann, “is to<br />

bring stories to life that we hope can<br />

get people to think about things in a<br />

different way and maybe act towards<br />

change.” And it’s working. Weyermann<br />

recalls an event where the filmmakers<br />

behind An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to<br />

Power were honored by the California<br />

League of Conservation Voters. There,<br />

Weyermann spoke with a young<br />

environmental activist—herself receiving<br />

an award there—who recalled that<br />

she attended one of Al Gore’s training<br />

sessions after finding out about them in<br />

the first An Inconvenient Truth.<br />

Sometimes the impact is large: the<br />

Indonesian government acknowledging<br />

for the first time its genocide of<br />

suspected communists as a direct result<br />

of The Act of Killing and The Look of<br />

Silence. Sometimes they’re smaller: all<br />

the people who grew more conscious of<br />

their eating habits as a result of seeing<br />

Robert Kenner’s 2008 documentary<br />

Food, Inc. “These kinds of things are<br />

incredible,” Weyermann says. “It’s really<br />

about how these films connect to viewers<br />

and get them to think or change or<br />

feel supported or feel acknowledged or<br />

inspired. Whatever the case might be.<br />

That’s what gives Jonathan and me a lot<br />

of pride in what we do.” <br />

50 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 50<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

THE BEST<br />



...<br />









JANUARY 15-17, <strong>2018</strong> — UNIVERSAL CITY, CA<br />


fj ad for lass.indd 1<br />

11/30/17 11:50 AM



ICTA’s L.A. Seminar Provides<br />

a Global Perspective on Exhibition<br />

by Mark Mayfield, Director, Global Cinema Marketing, QSC LLC<br />

For more than a decade, the International<br />

Cinema Technology Association<br />

has hosted its annual Los<br />

Angeles Seminar Series. Initially conceived<br />

as an educational session, the L.A. Seminar<br />

Series has emerged to become one of<br />

the most important industry gatherings<br />

for keeping up with new developments in<br />

cinema technology, monitoring business<br />

issues and networking.<br />

This <strong>January</strong>, the ICTA/LASS promises<br />

to be one of the most comprehensive<br />

events ever hosted by ICTA. Over two days,<br />

attendees will participate in 16 sessions<br />

including panel discussions, presentations,<br />

and three offsite visits to local cinemas for<br />

live demonstrations. Topics range from new<br />

trends in cinema technology, theatre design<br />

and operations, moviegoer research and<br />

interactive attraction technologies to insights<br />

on the global cinema market. And, as<br />

always, attendees will get a preview of new<br />

products and technologies from the industry’s<br />

leading equipment manufacturers.<br />

This year’s Los Angeles Seminar kicks<br />

off on Monday evening, <strong>January</strong> 15, at<br />

the Universal Hilton with the traditional<br />

welcome cocktail reception open to all<br />

attendees. The following day opens with a<br />

keynote address featuring a global perspective<br />

on the evolving international cinema<br />

exhibition market, presented by Cinépolis<br />

chief operating officer Miguel Mier.<br />

Day one sessions continue on a vital<br />

topic, as the cinema environment becomes<br />

increasingly networked. James Pope, an<br />

IT expert and sound/video engineer at<br />

Charles Creative, will discuss “Network<br />

Security Best Practices, Penetration Testing<br />

and Horror Stories.”<br />

One of the most dynamic and most<br />

talked-about recent trends in cinema<br />

over the past year is the potential of large<br />

direct-view screens in theatrical exhibition<br />

applications. Frank Tees of Moving Image<br />

Technologies will lead a panel discussion<br />

on “Direct View Cinema Displays.” featuring<br />

industry experts and representatives<br />

from equipment vendors. Panelists will<br />

discuss the implications for theatre owners,<br />

equipment manufacturers, installers and<br />

the moviegoer.<br />

While ICTA was originally conceived<br />

as an organization for cinema equipment<br />

manufacturers, over the past decade its<br />

mission has expanded to include membership<br />

and perspectives from all other<br />

corners of the cinema industry. The year’s<br />

Seminar features an “Exhibitor Roundtable,”<br />

where technology managers from<br />

several leading cinema chains will share<br />

viewpoints on a variety of topics that impact<br />

theatre operations.<br />

Cinema sound technology is always<br />

evolving, with new formats and methods<br />

of delivering the auditory experience to<br />

theatre patrons. Ultimately, that experience<br />

comes down to the selection of equipment<br />

and the environment in which it operates,<br />

including power amplifiers, loudspeakers,<br />

audio signal processing and room acoustics.<br />

While some may view these as mature<br />

technologies, they are certainly not indistinguishable,<br />

as John F. Allen points out<br />

in a session themed “Amplifiers Are NOT<br />

All the Same.” This session covers the important<br />

attributes of power amplifiers and<br />

compares their different classes.<br />

Afterwards, Mark Elliott, CEO of<br />

Eomac. will lead an informative panel discussion<br />

on the “Design and Construction<br />

Challenges of Food and Beverage Services<br />

in the Cinema of <strong>2018</strong>,” which will include<br />

concessions vendors, designers and architects.<br />

Panelists will discuss how the expansion<br />

of concession services has impacted<br />

theatre interior design.<br />

Looking toward the worldwide market,<br />

attendees will get an opportunity to learn<br />

about the current climate of global content<br />

distribution in a one-on-one interview<br />

with Andrew Cripps, president of 20th<br />

Century Fox International Distribution.<br />

What does today’s moviegoing audience<br />

think about the current state of the<br />

cinema industry? Since our true collective<br />

end-customer is the moviegoer, this year’s<br />

Seminar provides several sessions devoted<br />

to listening to our customers. Billy Jones,<br />

senior director, strategic marketing, with<br />

leading cinema advertising network and<br />

research firm National CineMedia, will<br />

review some of the findings from their ongoing<br />

frequent-moviegoers research initiative<br />

“Ask The Audience” (a regular feature of<br />

<strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> International). Also, a group of<br />

young moviegoers will present their opinions<br />

of today’s moviegoing experience, in a<br />

panel discussion led by Paul Dergarabedian,<br />

senior media analyst at comScore.<br />

The first day of LASS <strong>2018</strong> will conclude<br />

with a post-dinner trip to the UCLA<br />

James Bridges Theatre for an entertaining<br />

“Look at 70mm”, hosted by UCLA’s Jess<br />

Daily and Ioan Allen of Dolby Labs.<br />

Day two will begin with a field trip<br />

across the street to the AMC Universal<br />

Cinemas for a fascinating presentation/<br />

demonstration about archival film restoration.<br />

Theo Gluck, director of library restoration<br />

and preservation at Disney Studios,<br />

will show film samples and trace the painstaking<br />

process of restoring and preserving<br />

classic film masterpieces.<br />

One of the most promising technologies<br />

on the horizon for motion picture image<br />

quality is high dynamic range (HDR).<br />

A panel discussion led by Christie’s Susie<br />

Beiersdorf will offer different viewpoints<br />

from studios, tech experts and filmmakers<br />

on the definition of HDR, what we can<br />

expect from it, and the realities of implementing<br />

it in today’s cinema.<br />

As cinema technologies evolve, we<br />

sometimes lose perspective on the cultural<br />

importance of the cinema. Is it fundamentally<br />

an art form, entertainment or<br />

a business? To lend some clarity to the<br />

52 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 52<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

Schedule of Events<br />

topic, two presenters will provide different<br />

viewpoints. One of the industry’s foremost<br />

experts on image and projection quality,<br />

Harry Mathias, professor at San Jose State<br />

University, will discuss the crossroads of<br />

technology and art in a special lecture.<br />

Then, attendees will hear a research-based<br />

perspective from Dan Cryan, executive<br />

director of media and content at IHS<br />

Markit, a global market intelligence firm.<br />

Dan will discuss the relationship between<br />

the cinema experience and the technology<br />

used to deliver it.<br />

Event cinema offers one of the most<br />

promising revenue generators for theatre<br />

operators to allow them to capitalize on<br />

their investment in properties and technology.<br />

Ray Nutt, CEO of Fathom Events,<br />

will lead us through the current state of<br />

this exciting opportunity, and how theatre<br />

operators can be part of it.<br />

The final business discussion for the<br />

day dives into the world of data, focusing<br />

on how cinemas are collecting tons of data<br />

on their customer transactions and how<br />

they can use that data in order to improve<br />

the business. Alan Roe, CEO of Jack Roe,<br />

and Leon Newnham, president of Vista<br />

USA, will discuss “Using Data to Build<br />

Your Business.”<br />

Another opportunity for alternative use<br />

of the cinema is recreating the excitement<br />

of a live sporting environment in a movie<br />

theatre. The final event of the Seminar will<br />

be an offsite visit to Hollywood’s legendary<br />

TCL Chinese Theatre, for an e-sports<br />

demonstration and reception hosted by<br />

MediaMation.<br />

This year’s ICTA Los Angeles Seminar<br />

offers a full 360-degree look at what’s<br />

going on in the theatrical exhibition business.<br />

If movie theatres are part of your life,<br />

there is simply no better opportunity to<br />

mingle with your peers, gain new insights<br />

and learn ways to grow your business—and<br />

have some fun along the way. <br />

Monday, <strong>January</strong> 15<br />

7:00 PM—Welcome Cocktail Reception<br />

& Dinner (Ballroom C)<br />

Tuesday, <strong>January</strong> 16<br />

8:30 AM—Breakfast (Foyer A&B)<br />

9:00 AM—Welcome: Mike Archer,<br />

President, ICTA<br />

9:15 AM—Keynote Address.<br />

Speaker: Miguel Mier, COO Cinépolis<br />

9:45 AM—“Network Security Best<br />

Practices, Penetration Testing and<br />

Horror Stories”<br />

Speaker: James Pope, Sound/Video<br />

Engineer & Editor at Charles Creative<br />

10:30 AM—“Direct View Cinema<br />

Displays: Let’s Talk Solutions, Not<br />

Panels”<br />

Moderator: Frank Tees<br />

Special Remarks: Peter Lude, CTO,<br />

Mission Rock Digital<br />

Panelists: Barry Ferrell, QSC<br />

John Batliner, Harman<br />

Charles Robinson, Dolby<br />

Chris Buchanan/Bill Mandell, Samsung<br />

Gary Mandle, Sony Electronics<br />

11:45 AM—Exhibitor Roundtable<br />

Moderator: Joe DeMeo<br />

Speakers: Mark Louis, Alamo Drafthouse<br />

Mark Collins, Marcus Theatres<br />

Kirk Griffin, Harkins Theatres<br />

Jon Kidder, National Amusements<br />

12:30 AM—“Amplifiers Are NOT<br />

All the Same”<br />

Speaker: John Allen,<br />

President, High Performance Stereo<br />

1:00 PM—Lunch (Ballroom C)<br />

2:00 PM—<strong>2018</strong> Annual ICTA Convention,<br />

NAPA Marriott<br />

Speaker: Joe DeMeo<br />

2:15 PM—“Not Just Popcorn & Soda Pop—<br />

Meeting the Design and Construction<br />

Challenges of Food and Beverage<br />

Services in the Cinema of <strong>2018</strong>”<br />

Moderator: Mark Elliott, CEO, EOMAC<br />

Speakers: Derek Galloway, Martek<br />

Mike Cummings, TK Architecture<br />

Bruce Proctor, Proctor Companies<br />

Bob McCall, JKRP Architects<br />

3:00 PM—Interview with Andrew<br />

Cripps, President of 20th Century Fox<br />

International Distribution<br />

3:30 PM—“Ask the Audience”<br />

Billy Jones, Senior Director, Strategic<br />

Marketing, National CineMedia<br />

4:00 PM—Panel of Students on Likes<br />

and Dislikes of Today’s Cinema<br />

Moderator: Paul Dergarabedian,<br />

Senior Media Analyst, comScore<br />

4:30 PM—Manufacturers’ Presentations<br />

5:00 PM—Wrap-Up for Day 1<br />

by Mike Archer<br />

5:30 PM—Dinner Reception<br />

(Ballroom C & D)<br />

6:30 PM—“A Look at 70mm”<br />

Hosted by Jess Daily, Motion Picture<br />

Projection Services, UCLA<br />

UCLA James Bridges Theatre<br />

Buses depart at 6:30 pm and<br />

return at 9 pm.<br />

Wednesday, <strong>January</strong> 17<br />

Mark Mayfield takes over as moderator.<br />

8:30 AM—Breakfast (A & B Foyer)<br />

9:30 AM—“One Frame at a Time:<br />

Preservation, Restoration,<br />

Reconstruction”<br />

Speaker: Theo Gluck, Director,<br />

Library Restoration & Preservation,<br />

Disney Studios<br />

11:00 AM—“HDR in the Cinema”<br />

Moderator: Susie Beiersdorf,<br />

VP Sales, the Americas,<br />

Christie Digital<br />

Speakers: Chris Witham<br />

Walt Disney Studios<br />

Mark Christiansen, Paramount Studios<br />

Jerry Pierce, NATO Technology Advisor<br />

Curtis Clark, ASC<br />

Michael Zink, Warner Bros.<br />

12:00 PM—Lunch (Ballroom C)<br />

1:00 PM—“Technology vs. Art<br />

in Today’s Cinema”<br />

Speaker: Harry Mathias, Professor<br />

at San Jose State University,<br />

Department of <strong>Film</strong> and Theatre<br />

1:30 PM—Research Report<br />

Speaker: Dan Cryan, IHS Markit<br />

2:00 PM—“The Evolution & Impact<br />

of Event Cinema”<br />

Speaker: Ray Nutt,<br />

Fathom Entertainment<br />

2:30 PM—“It’s Not What You’ve Got<br />

But What You Do with It:<br />

The Value of Data to Today’s<br />

Movie Theatres.”<br />

Speakers: Alan Roe, Jack Roe<br />

Leon Newnham, Vista<br />

3:00 PM—Manufacturers’<br />

Presentations<br />

4:00 PM—Wrap-Up for Day 2<br />

by Mike Archer<br />

5:00 PM—E-Sports Demonstration<br />

and Reception,<br />

Sponsored by MediaMation<br />

Buses depart for TCL Chinese Theatre<br />

promptly at 5:00 pm from the<br />

Universal Hilton.<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 53<br />

016-057.indd 53<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

ESMP’s 47 Meters Down may become<br />

the second-highest grossing indie film of 2017.<br />

Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures<br />

Looks for Broad-Appeal Releases<br />


IN TOWN<br />

by Doris Toumarkine<br />

Amid so many career-wrecking<br />

scandals and horrifying fires, the<br />

new theatrical distribution entity<br />

Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures<br />

(ESMP), an offspring of comedian/entrepreneur<br />

Byron Allen’s L.A.-based global<br />

media operation Entertainment Studios<br />

(ES), is bringing some good news from<br />

Hollywood to theatres and film fans.<br />

As the abundance of quality<br />

entertainment soars, dazzles and confuses,<br />

the creation of ESMP, the new kid on the<br />

distribution block, could be seen as risky.<br />

But its odds rose this summer with its first<br />

release, the hit thriller 47 Meters Down,<br />

which may become the second-highest<br />

grossing indie film of 2017. ESMP’S next<br />

release, Hostiles, a western starring Christian<br />

Bale that opened Dec. 22, suggests that that<br />

47 wasn’t beginner’s luck. Releases to follow<br />

(see below) suggest ESMP will continue to<br />

deliver the goods.<br />

As with all “kids,” good parenting<br />

counts. ES founder and CEO Allen birthed<br />

his new theatrical distribution business from<br />

his 2015 purchase of Freestyle Releasing,<br />

the well-established independent service<br />

distribution company founded by industry<br />

veteran Mark Borde, now ESMP president<br />

of theatrical distribution, and the late Susan<br />

Jackson. When the highly regarded Jackson<br />

unexpectedly passed away, Allen, who had<br />

been a friend of Jackson’s, bought Freestyle,<br />

thus adding film distribution to the<br />

25-year-old ES’ growing family of first-run<br />

television syndication, game shows, OTT<br />

sports and seven cable-network businesses.<br />

Allen’s Freestyle purchase brought<br />

into the ESMP fold two significant<br />

Allen hires: Borde and Freestyle’s young<br />

gun Chris Charalambous, now the<br />

division’s head of acquisitions.<br />

Californian Borde, an industry veteran<br />

brought up in the biz, has roots in exhibition.<br />

“I owned two theatres, one in L.A.<br />

and the other in Monterey and I know<br />

how theatres work from the inside out,” he<br />

says. Charalambous, who went Hollywood<br />

Byron Allen<br />

(center), Mark<br />

Borde (left)<br />

and Chris<br />

Charalambous.<br />

54 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 54<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

ESMP’s Chappaquiddick, with Jason Clarke as Sen. Ted Kennedy, and Hostiles, starring Christian Bale, open wide in <strong>2018</strong>.<br />

following a New York hospital administration<br />

job, was raised in Queens (“only<br />

a block and a half from where the Weinsteins<br />

grew up”). Arriving West with a bit<br />

of “star is born” backstory (“without a cent<br />

or financial safety net”), he became a serial<br />

temp, landing jobs at the E! Network,<br />

MGM and, most importantly, a full-time<br />

one with Pierce Brosnan’s production company<br />

Irish DreamTime where he remained<br />

eight years and met his first mentor, the<br />

late Beau St. Clair, Brosnan’s friend and<br />

production partner. Next on his C.V. was<br />

the job at Freestyle and a new mentor in<br />

Susan Jackson. As he explains it, St. Clair<br />

taught him “show business, what production<br />

was all about” and Jackson was “business<br />

show,” a way into the nuts and bolts of<br />

distribution and exhibition.<br />

However different in age and background,<br />

Borde and Charalambous share a<br />

strong faith and focus—faith in the continuing<br />

strength of the theatrical platform (Says<br />

Borde, “People will always want to get out of<br />

the house and kids want to go out on dates”)<br />

and focus on bringing to large audiences<br />

on as many as 3,000 to 4,000 screens highquality<br />

mainstream entertainment (“with lots<br />

of popcorn thrown in,” quips Borde).<br />

But the mission is clear—ESMP,<br />

whether initially appealing to action fans,<br />

millennials or families, means to hit that<br />

often coveted, sometimes elusive mid-budget,<br />

MOR box-office sweet spot. Their slate<br />

(this reporter was afforded a look) offers a<br />

broad range of genres and subject matter<br />

and supports the ESMP mission.<br />

Charalambous, after dealing with<br />

TWC’s Bob Weinstein, rescued Dimension<br />

<strong>Film</strong>s’ 47 Meters Down from a direct-to-<br />

DVD fate. A pure genre exercise of thrills<br />

and damsels in distress, it’s a fun thriller<br />

about two sisters on vacation in Mexico<br />

on a pleasure boat outing for underwater<br />

shark-watching. Their cage takes them to<br />

Improve your bottom line with INTEGRA, our theatre management software solution<br />

Total Guest Experience<br />

✔ Online ticketing, digital signage, reserved<br />

seating, dine-in, gift card and loyalty apps<br />

Key Performance Indicators<br />

✔ Detailed reports<br />

✔ Critical insights into the performance of your operations<br />

Increase Per Cap (RPP)<br />

✔ Software/hardware optimized for concession areas<br />

✔ Prompted up-selling<br />

Phone# 866-629-4757<br />

omniterm.com<br />

STA<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 55<br />

016-057.indd 55<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

the ocean bottom and a lurking shark, but,<br />

alas, needed better maintenance.<br />

As contrast, the current Hostiles, which<br />

goes wide in <strong>January</strong>, has Christian Bale in<br />

one of his best roles, here as an embittered<br />

late-19th-century Army captain stationed<br />

at a fort in the remote West. He’s ordered<br />

to return a dying Cheyenne prisoner and<br />

his family through dangerous territory to<br />

his Montana homeland. With gorgeous<br />

vistas and an unobtrusive undercurrent of<br />

seriousness, Hostiles recalls the artistry and<br />

western adventures of Hawk and Ford or<br />

Zinnemann with High Noon.<br />

Also for <strong>2018</strong>, ESMP has the smart<br />

Chappaquiddick, a gripping political drama<br />

based on the 1969 scandal when Senator<br />

Ted Kennedy, then a Presidential hopeful,<br />

left the scene of a Martha’s Vineyard car<br />

accident that took the life of his passenger,<br />

Mary Jo Kopechne. Kate Mara as Mary Jo,<br />

Jason Clarke as an uncannily credible Teddy<br />

and Bruce Dern as the harsh Kennedy<br />

patriarch add luster to a dark tale of crafty<br />

political maneuverings.<br />

The sci-fi thriller Replicas, starring<br />

Keanu Reeves, has a scientist driven to<br />

bring back to life his deceased family from<br />

a tragedy he was involved in. It’s awash<br />

in suspense and the snazzy visuals that its<br />

tech-world setting demands.<br />

Also moving “fast and furious” along<br />

ESMP’s genre lane is Rob Cohen’s (The<br />

Fast and The Furious) The Hurricane Heist,<br />

about a massive heist attempt at an Alabama<br />

U.S. Treasury mint facility during a<br />

category-five hurricane.<br />

Next year also puts ESMP in the animation<br />

ring with Animal Crackers, about<br />

a family’s struggle (using a magical box of<br />

Animal Crackers!) to save a rundown circus<br />

from an evil uncle. The impressive voice cast<br />

(Emily Blunt, Danny DeVito, John Krasinski)<br />

should please the whole family.<br />

Borde is deservedly excited about this<br />

lineup. He calls Hostiles “the best movie of<br />

the year!” He labels Hurricane Heist “deep in<br />

genre. It’s action, cars, a blast, popcorn film<br />

and what I like about going to the movies.<br />

No Academy Awards—just sit back and<br />

enjoy.” He calls his bias toward genre “a<br />

mainstream take with an indie bent.”<br />

As Hostiles gets some buzz, so does the<br />

upcoming Chappaquiddick. (Yes, subject<br />

matter matters.) Says Borde, “It’s controversial<br />

and a true story that reminds that some<br />

things never change. When you’re in a position<br />

of power you can make things happen,<br />

make things go away. It’s mind-boggling<br />

how some get away with that.”<br />

ESMP’s overall m.o., says Borde, is “to<br />

license mostly for the U.S. and Canada, but<br />

on new titles we’re moving toward acquiring<br />

all rights worldwide when available.”<br />

ESMP isn’t (yet) in the tentpole business,<br />

but, says Borde, “we target wide releases<br />

and go after movies that can play 2,500 to<br />

4,000 screens, which sets us apart from the<br />

smaller companies. I like them [smaller<br />

companies like Roadside Attractions, etc.],<br />

we’re friends but not competitive, because<br />

ESMP is in the studio space. We love<br />

thrillers, horror, comedy, African-American,<br />

animated. We try to find movies we<br />

can target without using a shotgun.”<br />

ESMP also has the indie SVOD/VOD/<br />

DVD group Freestyle Digital Media and<br />

its vast library, which Charalambous oversees.<br />

“This programming feeds ES’ different<br />

cable, digital and broadcast business lines,”<br />

Borde notes.<br />

Regarding what Borde sees as his<br />

biggest challenge, his quick answer is:<br />

“Finding what is called in the distribution<br />

business ‘shelf space’; there’s certainly<br />

no shortage of movies. Look at what we<br />

get each week: maybe four or five studio<br />

films and countless smaller films, and all<br />

the amenity choices to deal with. The 3D<br />

waves, IMAX, D-BOX. So many releases,<br />

often ten to twenty new ones each week,<br />

whether wide, limited, exclusive, but especially<br />

at the end of the year.<br />

“So my challenge is to deal with shelf<br />

space, and as a distributor who’s been in the<br />

business a while, it’s a need to know how<br />

and when to hold or fold, or find that clear<br />

runway for your comedy, thriller, whatever.<br />

I’m very conscious of competition for the<br />

week and even before, because trailerplaying<br />

is critical to beginning traction. And<br />

there are always surprises and shifts, so you<br />

have to be nimble.”<br />

Borde believes audiences today are different.<br />

“They’re younger, as proven by Pixar and<br />

Marvel [product]. Thematically, the audiences<br />

are there for tentpoles and older filmgoers<br />

are coming out for the right movie.”<br />

As for exhibition’s seasonal attendance<br />

bumps and slumps, Borde acknowledges,<br />

“There are better times of the year for films,<br />

such as summer for mainstream and blockbusters,<br />

but it’s definitely a twelve-monthsa-year<br />

business.” And there’s no bad playing<br />

time. “Good films can play anytime and<br />

cream rises to the top.”<br />

Borde, who will be sticking to the 90-<br />

day window, praises exhibitors for “trying<br />

everything, even trying new ticket sales<br />

programs like what Regal and Arclight are<br />

doing. This is part of the evolution of a huge<br />

cultural industry and things are happening<br />

at lightning speed and we all have to cope<br />

and stay relevant.”<br />

On the acquisitions side of ESMP,<br />

Charalambous says, “I’m looking for something<br />

specific—the wide releases that can<br />

go out to thousands of theatres and not the<br />

indie darlings. I’m going after commercial<br />

content, a movie-movie, an event of the<br />

action, horror, thriller, family kind.” For<br />

Freestyle Digital Media, he’s on the lookout<br />

for limited-release product or smaller<br />

discovery titles.<br />

The company, he says, aims for a broader<br />

audience than do most other indie distributors,<br />

“Our mission,” he explains, “is to feed<br />

the audience, not chase an audience. We<br />

believed that our shark movie [47 Meters<br />

Down] would appeal to teens, and older<br />

audiences would follow. We are in the business<br />

of finding things that make the most<br />

sense and being able to say confidently, ‘This<br />

is a good movie and you will like it.’”<br />

With so much content to sift through,<br />

how does Charalambous find what ESMP<br />

needs? He immediately responds with a<br />

claim of “good memory! And good networking<br />

and knowing a lot of people. We<br />

do great tracking, always talking to producers<br />

and hitting the big festivals like Cannes,<br />

AFM, Toronto, Sundance. As a company,<br />

we have our eyes and ears on all the festivals,<br />

even smaller, niche-ier ones.”<br />

How ESMP landed 47 Meters Down<br />

is testament to staying in touch and being<br />

vigilant. “I knew the finance people and<br />

they tipped me to the fact that it was going<br />

to DVD. We felt it deserved better.”<br />

ESMP’s western powerhouse Hostiles<br />

too is quite a get. Says Charalambous, “We<br />

knew the movie was out there and premiering<br />

at Telluride. We heard there was good<br />

response there, so we followed it to Toronto,<br />

where we acquired it.”<br />

As an acquirer, ESMP, he indicates,<br />

also shows the money and generous P&A<br />

commitments ($30-40 million potentially)<br />

for release to thousands of theatres. Further<br />

proof of deep pockets comes from reports of<br />

lost bids. “We made the biggest bid for The<br />

Birth of a Nation [a lucky loss, as the film’s<br />

release was ultimately undone by scandal],”<br />

he says, “and went big for Mudbound,” which<br />

Netflix grabbed. (ESMP has an output deal<br />

with Netflix.)<br />

And now a shark alert: Distribution<br />

soon won’t be ESMP’s only game, as it has<br />

just begun the dive into production with<br />

its undersea sequel 48 Meters Down. Says<br />

Borde, “As with producing any film, it’s a<br />

long and winding road. But we are so excited<br />

to be following up our huge success<br />

47 Meters Down. We have secured the same<br />

creative team, although the film has not<br />

been cast as of yet.” <br />

56 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

016-057.indd 56<br />

12/19/17 2:14 PM

Don’t cut corners<br />

with your cinema<br />

experience!<br />

It’s a lot easier to make<br />

movie magic happen when<br />

you have the right Theatre<br />

Management System.<br />

Arts Alliance Media provides the world’s<br />

leading TMS, delivering better cinema<br />

experiences across over 40,000 screens.<br />

@ArtsAllianceM<br />

ArtsAllianceMedia<br />

hello@artsalliancemedia.com<br />

It gives you easy control of content,<br />

cuts out human error and makes ‘dark<br />

screens’ a thing of the past.<br />

Discover what you’re missing at<br />


I N T E R N A T I O N A L<br />

<strong>2018</strong><br />

The<br />


Distribution Guide provides ready reference information<br />

on the theatrical film distribution companies, including contact<br />

information and the names and titles of key executives.<br />

A24<br />

31 W 27th St., 11th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10001<br />

(646) 568-6015<br />

www.a24films.com<br />

Founders: David Fenkel, Daniel Katz,<br />

John Hodges<br />

www.facebook.com/a24<br />

Twitter: @A24<br />


448 Manville Rd.<br />

Pleasantville, NY 10570<br />

(914) 741-1818<br />

info@abramorama.com<br />

www.abramorama.com<br />

Pres.: Richard Abramowitz<br />

www.facebook.com/AbramoramaInc<br />

Twitter: @abramorama<br />


2-14 50th Ave., Ste. 1006W<br />

Long Island City, NY 11101<br />

(718) 392-2783<br />

www.adoptfilms.com<br />

Founders: Tim Grady, Jeff Lipsky<br />

www.facebook.com/Adopt<strong>Film</strong>s<br />

Twitter: @Adopt<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


Los Angeles, CA<br />

(310) 826-5000<br />

www.atlasdistribution.com<br />

Chairman: John Aglialoro<br />

Pres.: Harmon Kaslow<br />

COO: Joan Carter<br />

CTO: Scott DeSapio<br />

facebook.com/AtlasMovies/<br />

Twitter: @AtlasMovies<br />


1620 26th St., Ste. 4000N<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90404<br />

(310) 573-2305<br />

COO: Albert Cheng<br />


812 N Robertston Blvd.<br />

West Hollywood, CA 90069<br />

www.annapurna.pictures<br />

Founder & CEO: Megan Ellison<br />

www.facebook.com/AnnapurnaPics<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @ AnnapurnaPics<br />


465 E 7th St. #6V<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11218<br />

(646) 732-3725<br />

argotpictures.com<br />

Instagram: @argot_pictures<br />

Founder: Jim Browne<br />

www.facebook.com/argotpictures<br />

www.youtube.com/user/ArgotPic/videos<br />

Twitter: @Argotpictures<br />


3rd Fl., Bldg. 3, Hepingli E St.<br />

Dongcheng District, Beijing 100013 China<br />

010-64516000<br />

Fax: 010-84222188<br />

www.ewang.com<br />

www.facebook.com/enlight.pictures<br />


116 East 27th St., 5th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10016<br />

(212) 951-5700<br />

www.bleeckerstreetmedia.com<br />

www.facebook.com/BleeckerSt<strong>Film</strong>s<br />

Twitter: @bleeckerstfilms<br />

BOND/360<br />

466 Broome St., 4th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10013<br />

hello@bondinfluence.com<br />

bond360press.com<br />

Founder: Marc Schiller<br />

Pres.: Sara Schiller<br />


280 South Beverly Dr., Ste. 208<br />

Beverly Hills, CA 90212<br />

(310) 285-0812<br />

Fax: (310) 285-0772<br />

info@brainmedia.com<br />

www.brainmedia.net<br />

Pres.: Meyer Swarzstein<br />

Dir. of Marketing & Digital Distribution:<br />

Michelle Swarzstein<br />


133 N 4th St.<br />

Philadelphia, PA 19106<br />

(267) 324-3934<br />

Fax: (267) 687-7533<br />

sales@bgpics.com<br />

www.breakingglasspictures.com<br />

SVP, Sales & Distribution: Michael Repsch<br />

CEO, Co-Pres.: Richard Wolff<br />

Co-Pres. & Dir. of Domestic Sales:<br />

Richard Ross<br />

www.facebook.com/BreakingGlassPictures<br />

Twitter: @breakingglasspx<br />

58 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 58<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM


6555 Barton Ave., 2nd Fl.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90038<br />

(323) 688-1800<br />

info@broadgreen.com<br />

www.broadgreen.com<br />

VP, Creative Affairs: Lauren McCarthy<br />

CEO: Gabriel Hammond<br />

SVP, Development & Production: Asher<br />

Goldstein<br />

Chief Creative Officer: Daniel Hammond<br />

www.facebook.com/broadgreen<br />

www.linkedin.com/company/broadgreen/<br />

www.youtube.com/broadgreenpictures<br />

Twitter: @broadgreen<br />


630 Ninth Ave.,<br />

<strong>Film</strong> Center Bldg., Ste. 405<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

(212) 246-6300<br />

CAVUpictures@aol.com<br />

www.cavupictures.com<br />

Pres.: Michael Sergio<br />

Pres. of Distribution & Marketing: Isil Bagdadi<br />


1100 Glendon Ave., Ste. 1100<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90024<br />

(310) 575-7000<br />

Fax: (310) 575-7551<br />

Andrew.Lee@cbs.com<br />

www.cbsfilms.com<br />

Pres.: Terry Press<br />

Marketing Dir.: Alison Chavez<br />

SVP, Production: Mark Ross<br />

EVP, Distribution: Steven Friedlander<br />

CFO: Reid Sullivan<br />

EVP, Business Affairs: Jack Bleck<br />

EVP, Post Production: Jack Schuster<br />

EVP, Acquisitions: Scott Shooman<br />

EVP & Gen. Counsel: Rik Toulon<br />

EVP, Marketing, Publicity & Promotions:<br />

Christine Batista<br />

SVP, Creative Advertising: Eric Mickelson<br />

VP, Marketing & Strategic Partnerships:<br />

Eddie DeVall<br />

VP, Regional Publicity & Promotions: Anne<br />

Collins<br />

VP, Interactive Marketing: Matt Gilhooley<br />

SVP, Sales & Distribution: David Magedman<br />

SVP, Communications: Grey Munford<br />

VP, Publicity: Hayley Perry<br />

Dir., Creative Advertising: Justin Hamann<br />

www.facebook.com/cbsfilms<br />

Twitter: @CBSfilms<br />


www.zgdygf.com<br />

Chairman & CEO: Sanping Han<br />

Gen. Mgr.: Tong Gang<br />


1880 Century Park E, Ste. 1002<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90067<br />

(323) 396 9168<br />

info@chinalionentertainment.com<br />

www.chinalionfilm.com<br />

COO: Robert Lundberg<br />

www.facebook.com/chinalionfilm<br />

www.youtube.com/chinalionfilm<br />

Twitter: @chinalionfilm<br />


15301 Ventura Blvd.,<br />

Bldg. B, Ste. 420<br />

Sherman Oaks, CA 91403<br />

(424) 281-5400<br />

www.cinedigm.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

45 W 36th St., 7th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10018<br />

(212) 206-8600<br />

(212) 598-4898<br />

Chairman of the Board & CEO: Chris McGurk<br />

CFO: Jeffrey Edell<br />

EVP, Content, Acquisitions & Digital Sales:<br />

Yolanda Macias<br />

EVP Corporate Marketing & Communications:<br />

Jill Newhouse Calcaterra<br />

Pres. of Cinedigm Entertainment Group:<br />

Bill Sondheim<br />


115 West 30 St., Ste. 800<br />

New York, NY 10001<br />

(800) 723-5522<br />

Fax: (212) 685-4717<br />

info@cinemaguild.com<br />

www.cinemaguild.com<br />

Chairman: Mary-Ann Hobel<br />

www.facebook.com/cinemaguild/<br />

www.youtube.com/user/CinemaGuild<br />

Twitter, Tumblr: @CinemaGuild<br />


120 S Victory Blvd., 1st Fl.<br />

Burbank, CA 91502<br />

(818) 588-3033<br />

Fax: (818) 736-5820<br />

info@cinemalibrestudio.com<br />

www.cinemalibrestudio.com<br />

Pres.: Philippe Diaz<br />

CFO/VP, Marketing & Business Development:<br />

Beth Portello<br />

COO/Head of Distribution & Acquisitions:<br />

Rick Castro<br />

Head of Foreign Sales: Mohamed Ouasti<br />

VP, Int’l Sales & Television: Cristian Bettler<br />

Head of Home Entertainment: Rick Rieger<br />

www.facebook.com/cinemalibrestudio<br />

Twitter: @cinemalibre<br />


10915 Queens Blvd., Ste. 3B<br />

Forest Hills, NY 11375<br />

(347) 330-4738<br />

rodrigo@cineslate.com<br />

www.cinemaslate.com<br />

Founder: Rodrigo Brandão<br />

www.facebok.com/cinemaslate<br />

Twitter: @cineslate<br />


611 Broadway, Ste. 836<br />

New York, NY 10012<br />

(212) 254-5474<br />

info@cinematropical.com<br />

www.cinematropical.com<br />

Co-Founder & Exec.: Carlos A. Gutiérrez<br />

www.facebook.com/CinemaTropical<br />

Twitter: @CinemaTropical<br />


3530 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 1220<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90010<br />

(213)-355-1600<br />

Fax: (213) 355-1615<br />

www.cj-entertainment.com<br />

CEO & Pres.: Mark W. Shaw<br />

COO: Angela Killoren<br />

facebook.com/cjentertainmentusa<br />

Twitter: @CJENT_USA<br />

Instagram: @cjent_usa<br />


750 Lexington Ave., 5th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10022<br />

(646) 380-7929<br />

www.cohenmedia.net<br />

Chairman & CEO: Charles S. Cohen<br />

EVP: John Kochman<br />

EVP: Gary Rubin<br />

VP Publicity: Maya Anand<br />

VP Marketing: Josh Kappraff<br />

Controller: Rudy Garcia<br />

VP, Domestic Distribution: William Thompson<br />

SVP, Int’l Distribution: Liz Mackiewicz<br />

www.facebook.com/CohenMediaGroup<br />


9660 Yoakum Dr.<br />

Beverly Hills, CA 90210<br />

(310) 273-1444<br />

maggie@dadafilms.net<br />

www.dadafilms.net<br />

Pres.: MJ Peckos<br />

Director of Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Maggie Cohen<br />


250 East Broad St.<br />

Westfield, NJ 07090<br />

(877) 286-7610<br />

info@diginextfilms.com<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 59<br />

058-070.indd 59<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

www.diginextfilms.com<br />

Co-Founder/Mgrs.: Larry Meistrich, Bud<br />

Mayo, Ari Friedman<br />


32 Court St., Ste. 2107<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11201<br />

distribfilmsus@gmail.com<br />

www.distribfilmsus.com<br />

CEO, Acquisitions: François Scippa-Kohn<br />

Dir. of Distribution & Bookings:<br />

Clémence Taillandier<br />

Chairman: Eric Brunswick<br />

www.facebook.com/distribfilmsus<br />

Twitter: @distribfilms<br />


612A E 6th St.<br />

Austin, TX 78701<br />

info@drafthousefilms.com<br />

www.drafthousefilms.com<br />

Founder & CEO: Tim League<br />

CBO: Christian Parkes<br />

COO: James Shapiro<br />

VP, Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Sumyi Khong Antonson<br />

www.facebook.com/drafthousefilms<br />

Twitter: @drafthousefilms<br />


1212 Tower II, Admiralty Centre<br />

18 Harcourt Rd.<br />

Hong Kong<br />

+852 2529 3898<br />

Fax: +852 2529 5277<br />

info@edkofilm.com.hk<br />

www.cinema.com.hk<br />

Exec. Dir.: Bill Kong<br />

Gen. Mgr., Sales & Acquisitions: Esther Yeung<br />

Sr. Mgr., Int’l Sales & Distribution: Julian Chu<br />


Los Angeles, CA<br />

www.electricentertainment.com<br />

CEO: Dean Devlin<br />

Founding Partner: Marc Roskin<br />

Co-Founder & Partner: Rachel Olschan<br />

COO: Dionne McNeff<br />

CFO: Jeff Gonzalez<br />

Head of Int’l Distribution: Sonia Mehandjiyska<br />

SVP Int’l Distribution & Co-Production:<br />

Nolan Pielak<br />

SVP, Business & Legal Affairs: Craig Gates<br />

VP, Development: Ben Kim<br />

Twitter: @ElectricEnt1<br />


134 Peter St., Ste. 700<br />

Toronto, ON M5V 2H2<br />

Canada<br />

(416) 646-2400<br />

entertainmentonegroup.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

150 S El Camino Dr., Ste. 300<br />

Beverly Hills, CA 90212<br />

CEO & Pres.: Darren Throop<br />

Co-President, <strong>Film</strong>, Television & Digital:<br />

Steve Bertram<br />

Pres. of Les <strong>Film</strong>s Séville: Patrick Roy<br />

EVP, WW Acquisitions: Lara Thompson<br />

facebook.com/eOnefilms<br />

Twitter: @entonegroup<br />



1925 Century Park E, 10th Fl.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90067<br />

(310) 277-3500<br />

www.esmp.com<br />

Founder, Chairman, CEO, Entertainment<br />

Studios: Byron Allen<br />

Co-Founder, Entertainment Studios:<br />

Carolyn Folks<br />

Pres. of Theatrical Distribution, ESMP:<br />

Mark Borde<br />

Gen. Sales Mgr., ESMP: Mike Simon<br />

Head of Acquisitions, ESMP: Chris Charalambous<br />

EVP of Marketing & Creative Services:<br />

Dick Roberts<br />

EVP & Gen. Counsel: Mark DeVitre<br />


345 N Maple Dr., Ste. 123<br />

Beverly Hills, CA 90210<br />

(424) 522-1200<br />

www.europacorp-corporate.com/US/<br />

Chairman: Luc Besson<br />

CEO: Marc Shmuger<br />

COO: Kevin McDonald<br />

Pres., Development & Production: Lisa Ellzey<br />

Head of Acquisitions: Federica Sainte-Rose<br />

Pres., Domestic Television & Digital<br />

Distribution: David Spiegelman<br />

FACTORY 25<br />

274 Willoughby Ave., #4R<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11205<br />

www.factorytwentyfive.com<br />

Founder: Matt Grady<br />

www.facebook.com/Factory-25-160451372230<br />

Twitter: @factory_25m/<br />


360 N La Cienega Blvd., 3rd Fl.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90048<br />

(323) 951-9197<br />

Fax: (323) 400-4246<br />

info@thefilmarcade.com<br />

thefilmarcade.com<br />

Partners: Miranda Bailey, Jason Beck<br />

Acquisitions Coordinator: Ayo Kepher-Maat<br />

www.youtube.com/user/The<strong>Film</strong>Arcade<br />

www.facebook.com/The<strong>Film</strong>Arcade<br />

Twitter: @The<strong>Film</strong>Arcade<br />


137 N Larchmont Blvd., #606<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90004<br />

(323) 610-8128<br />

Fax: (323) 908-4012<br />

theatrical@thefilmcollaborative.org<br />

www.thefilmcollaborative.org<br />

Founder & Co-Exec: Orly Ravid<br />

Co-Exec. Dir.: Jeffrey Winter<br />

www.facebook.com/thefilmcollaborative<br />

Twitter: @<strong>Film</strong>Collab<br />


237 W 35th St., Ste. 604<br />

New York, NY 10001<br />

(212) 941-7744<br />

Fax: (212) 941-7812<br />

info@filmmovement.com<br />

www.filmmovement.com<br />

Pres.: Michael Rosenberg<br />

VP, Sales: Demetri Makoulis<br />

Mgr., New Media: Melissa Lyde<br />

Dir., Non-Theatrical Sales: Maxwell Wolkin<br />

Dir., Theatrical Sales: Clemence Taillandier<br />

Mgr., Exhibitor Relations: James Weaver<br />

facebook.com/<strong>Film</strong>Movement<br />

youtube.com/user/<strong>Film</strong>Movement<br />

filmmovement.tumblr.com<br />

linkedin.com/company/film-movement<br />

Twitter: @film_movement<br />

Instagram: @filmmovement<br />


220 36th St., 4th Fl.<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11232<br />

(718) 369-9090<br />

contact@filmrise.com<br />

<strong>Film</strong>Rise.com<br />

CEO: Danny Fisher<br />

Pres.: Jack Fisher<br />

Chairman: Alan Klingenstein<br />

VP: Bob Jason<br />

VP, Distribution: Elias Watamanuk<br />

VP, Technical Operations: Thibault<br />

Hermenault<br />

Director, Creative Services: Aaron Hamel<br />

VP, Communication & Distribution: Jess Mills<br />

Director, Technical Operations:<br />

Hector Peralta<br />

Manager, Distribution & Marketing:<br />

Gibson Merrick<br />

www.facebook.com/<strong>Film</strong>Rise<br />

www.youtube.com/user/<strong>Film</strong>RiseTV<br />

Twitter: @filmrisetv<br />


630 Ninth Ave., Ste. 1213<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

(212) 243-0600<br />

Fax: (212) 989-7649<br />

info@firstrunfeatures.com<br />

www.firstrunfeatures.com<br />

60 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 60<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

Pres.: Seymour Wishman<br />

VP: Marc Mauceri<br />

www.facebook.com/firstrunfeatures<br />

Twitter: @firstrun<br />


100 Universal City Plaza,<br />

Bldg. 2160/Ste. 7C<br />

Universal City, CA 91608<br />

www.focusfeatures.com<br />

Pres., Distribution: Lisa Bunnell<br />

SVP, Sales: Lawrence Massey<br />

VP, In-Theatre Marketing: Eric Carr<br />

Director, In-Theatre Marketing: Emily Maguire<br />

Coordinator, Sales: Alec Doherty<br />

www.facebook.com/FocusFeatures<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @FocusFeatures<br />


A 20th Century Fox Company<br />

10201 West Pico Blvd.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90035<br />

(310) 369-1000<br />

Fax: (310) 969-3165<br />

www.foxsearchlight.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

1211 Ave. of the Americas, 16th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

(212) 556-2400<br />

Fax: (212) 556-8248<br />

Pres., Fox Searchlight Pictures: Stephen Gilula,<br />

Nancy Utley<br />

EVP, Marketing: Michelle Hooper<br />

EVP, Marketing, Creative Advertising<br />

& New Media: Larry C. Baldauf<br />

SVP, Gen. Sales Mgr.: Frank Rodriguez<br />

Pres., Fox Searchlight Int’l: Rebecca Kearey<br />

SVP, East Coast Publicity: Diana Loomis<br />

SVP, Media & Market Research: Rob Wilkinson<br />

VP, Audiovisual Creative Advertising: Flavia Amon<br />

VPs, Ntl. Publicity: Melissa Holloway,<br />

Angela Johnson, Barry Dale Johnson,<br />

Cassandra Butcher<br />

SVP, Creative Advertising: Heather Artis<br />

VP, Ntl. Publicity (East Coast):<br />

Barry Dale Johnson<br />

Mgr., Creative Advertising:<br />

Natalya Baryshnikova<br />

VP, Field Publicity & Promotions:<br />

Isabelle Sugimoto<br />

Dir., Digital Marketing, Searchlight Marketing:<br />

Alissa Norby<br />

www.facebook.com/foxsearchlight<br />

Twitter: @foxsearchlight<br />


Atlanta, GA<br />

funacademystudios.com<br />

Pres.: Joseph B. Wilkinson Jr.<br />

COO: Crystal Trawick<br />

CFO: Tom Sheehan<br />

www.facebook.com/funacademyinc<br />

www.linkedin.com/company/fun-academymotion-pictures-inc.<br />

www.pinterest.com/funacademyinc/<br />

Twitter: @funacademyinc<br />

GKIDS<br />

225 Broadway, Ste. 2610<br />

New York, NY 10007<br />

(212) 528-0500<br />

Fax: (212) 528-1437<br />

dave@gkids.com<br />

gkids.com<br />

Principals: Eric Beckman,<br />

David Jesteadt<br />


12 East 32nd St., 4th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10016<br />

(646) 586-3060<br />

info@grasshopperfilm.com<br />

www.grasshopperfilm.com<br />

Founder/Pres.: Ryan Krivoshey<br />

www.facebook.com/ghopperfilm/<br />

Twitter: @Ghopper<strong>Film</strong><br />

Instagram: @ryankrivoshey<br />


209 Richmond St.<br />

El Segundo, CA 90245<br />

(310) 388-9362<br />

caleb@gravitasventures.com<br />

www.gravitasventures.com<br />

CEO & Founder: Nolan Gallagher<br />

Pres.: Michael Murphy<br />

SVP, Business Affairs: Brendan Gallagher<br />

VP, Sales & Marketing: Laura Florence<br />

VP, Operations: Karia Brown<br />

Dir., Public Relations & Social Media:<br />

AJ Feuerman<br />

Dir., Acquisitions: Josh Spector<br />

Marketing, Digital Sales, & Theatrical<br />

Booking Coordinator: Caleb Ward<br />

facebook.com/GravitasVentures<br />

linkedin.com/company/gravitas-ventures/<br />

Twitter: @GravitasVOD<br />

Instagram: @gravitasventures<br />


2260 S Centinela Ave.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90064<br />

(310) 751-7065<br />

info@gunpowdersky.com<br />

gunpowdersky.com<br />

www.facebook.com/gunpowdersky/<br />

Instagram: @gunpowder_sky<br />

Twitter: @GunpowderSky<br />

CEO: Van Toffler<br />

Pres.: Floria Bauer<br />


2500 Broadway<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90404<br />

(310) 382-3000<br />

www.hbo.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

1100 Ave. of the Americas<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

(212)-512-1000<br />

www.facebook.com/hbodocs<br />

Twitter: @HBODocs<br />


32 Court St., 21st Fl.<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11201<br />

(718) 488-8900<br />

Fax: (718) 488-8642<br />

mail@icarusfilms.com<br />

www.icarusfilms.com<br />

Pres.: Jonathan Miller<br />

VP: Livia Bloom<br />

www.facebook.com/Icarus<strong>Film</strong>s/<br />

Twitter: @Icarus<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


11 Penn Plaza, 18th Fl.<br />

New York, NY<br />

(212) 324-8500<br />

Fax: (646) 273-7250<br />

ifcfilmsinfo@ifcfilms.com<br />

www.ifcfilms.com<br />

Co-Pres., IFC <strong>Film</strong>s & Sundance Selects:<br />

Jonathan Sehring<br />

EVP, Sales & Distribution: Mark Boxer<br />

EVP, Acquisitions & Productions:<br />

Arianna Bocco<br />

Co-Pres., IFC <strong>Film</strong>s: Lisa Schwartz<br />

SVP, Publicity & Promotions: Lauren Schwartz<br />

www.facebook.com/IFC<strong>Film</strong>sOfficial<br />

Twitter: @IFC<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


2525 Speakman Dr.<br />

Mississauga, ON L5K 1B1<br />

Canada<br />

(905) 403-6500<br />

Fax: (905) 403-6450<br />

info@imax.com<br />

www.imax.com<br />

Chairman: Bradley J. Wechsler<br />

CEO, IMAX Corp.: Richard L. Gelfond<br />

CEO, IMAX Entertainment & Sr. EVP, IMAX<br />

Corp.: Greg Foster<br />

Chief Legal Officer & Chief Business<br />

Development Officer, IMAX Corp.:<br />

Robert Lister<br />

CTO & EVP, IMAX Corp.: Brian Bonnick<br />

CFO & EVP, IMAX Corp.: Patrick McClymont<br />

Chief Quality Officer & Pres. IMAX Post/DKP<br />

Inc., Emeritus & EVP, IMAX Corp.:<br />

David Keighley<br />

Pres., Global Sales, Theatre Development &<br />

Exhibitor Relations & EVP, IMAX Corp:<br />

Don Savant<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 61<br />

058-070.indd 61<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

Pres., IMAX Theaters, IMAX Corp.:<br />

Mark Welton<br />

CEO, IMAX China Holding Inc.: Jiande Chen<br />

CMO, IMAX Corp.: JL Pomeroy<br />

Chief Human Resources Officer & EVP, IMAX<br />

Corp.: Carrie Lindzon-Jacobs<br />

Pres., IMAX Home Entertainment & EVP,<br />

IMAX Corp.: Jason Brenek<br />

Branch Offices:<br />

IMAX Corporation<br />

110 East 59th St., Ste. 2100<br />

New York, NY 10022<br />

(212) 821-0100<br />

IMAX Entertainment<br />

12582 West Millennium Dr.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90094<br />

(310) 255-5500<br />

IMAX China Holding, Inc.<br />

399 West Nanjing Rd.<br />

A401-410 Tomorrow Square<br />

Shanghai, China 200001<br />

86-21-2315-7000<br />

www.facebook.com/IMAX<br />

www.youtube.com/imaxmovies<br />

Twitter: @IMAX<br />


1041 N Formosa Ave.,<br />

Formosa Building Suite 221<br />

West Hollywood, CA 90046<br />

(323) 850-2667<br />

Fax: (800) 862-6234<br />

contact@indicanpictures.com<br />

www.indicanpictures.com<br />

Pres.: Shaun Hill<br />

www.facebook.com/indican.pictures<br />

Twitter: @IndicanPictures<br />


215 Park Ave. S, Fl. 5<br />

New York, NY 10003<br />

(212) 756-8822<br />

Fax: (212) 756-8850<br />

booking@janusfilms.com<br />

www.janusfilms.com<br />

www.facebook.com/janusfilms<br />

Twitter: @janusfilms<br />


13949 Ventura Blvd., Ste. 310<br />

Sherman Oaks, CA 91423<br />

(818) 572-1188<br />

www.ketchupentertainment.com<br />

CFO: Artur Galstian<br />

COO: Vahan Yepremyan<br />

CEO, Head of Acquisitions: Gareth West<br />

www.facebook.com/ketchupentertainment<br />


19 Heddon St.<br />

W1B 4BG London<br />

Great Britain<br />

+44 20 7851 6500<br />

london@kewmedia.com<br />

www.kewmedia.com<br />

Pres. of Distribution: Greg Phillips<br />

EVP Sales, Distribution: Jonathan Ford<br />


333 West 39th St., Ste. 503<br />

New York, NY 10018<br />

(212) 629-6880<br />

Fax: (212) 714-0871<br />

contact@kinolorber.com<br />

www.kinolorber.com<br />

Co-Pres. & CEO: Richard Lorber<br />

www.facebook.com/kinolorberinc<br />

Twitter: @KinoLorber<br />


Juan Dolio, Autovía del Este Km. 55<br />

San Pedro de Macorís, 21004<br />

Dominican Republic<br />

+1.809.544.0000<br />

info@lantica.media<br />

lantica.media<br />

facebook.com/lanticamedia1<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @lanticamedia<br />


40 Worth St., Ste. 824<br />

New York, NY 10013<br />

(212) 267-4501<br />

bpleisure@aol.com<br />

www.leisurefeat.com<br />

Pres.: Bruce Pavlow<br />


2700 Colorado Ave., Ste. 200<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90404<br />

(310) 449-9200<br />

generalinquiries@lionsgate.com<br />

www.lionsgate.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

530 Fifth Ave., 26th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

CEO: Jon Feltheimer<br />

Vice Chairman: Michael Burns<br />

Co-COO, Lionsgate & Pres., Lionsgate Motion<br />

Picture Group: Steve Beeks<br />

Co-COO: Brian Goldsmith<br />

Chief Strategic Officer & Gen. Counsel:<br />

Wayne Levin<br />

CFO: Jimmy Barge<br />

Co-Chairman, Lionsgate Motion Picture<br />

Group: Patrick Wachsberger<br />

Co-Chairman, Lionsgate Motion Picture<br />

Group: Joe Drake<br />

Co-Pres., Lionsgate Motion Picture Group:<br />

Erik Feig<br />

Pres., Production, Lionsgate Motion Picture<br />

Group: Michael Paseornek<br />

Co-Pres., Production, Lionsgate: Peter Kang<br />

Pres., Production, Summit: Geoffrey Shaevitz<br />

Pres., Acquisitions & Co-Productions:<br />

Jason Constantine<br />

Pres., Lionsgate Domestic Theatrical<br />

Distribution: David Spitz<br />

EVP, Exhibitor Relations/Operations:<br />

Mike Polydoros<br />

EVP, Gen. Sales Mgr., Lionsgate Domestic<br />

Theatrical Distribution: Shaun Barber<br />

EVP, Strategy, Operations, & Business<br />

Development: Jen Hollingsworth<br />

Chief Brand Officer & Pres., Worldwide<br />

Theatrical Marketing: Tim Palen<br />

Pres., Business & Legal Affairs, Lionsgate<br />

Motion Picture Group: Patricia Laucella<br />

EVP & Gen. Mgr., Business & Legal Affairs: B.<br />

James Gladstone<br />

Co-Pres., Business & Legal Affairs, Motion<br />

Picture Group: Robert M. Melnik<br />

EVP, Production: Jim Miller<br />

EVP, Acquisitions & Co-Productions:<br />

Eda Kowan<br />

SVP, Exhibitor Relations: Will Preuss<br />

Pres., Home Entertainment: Ron Schwartz<br />

EVP, Worldwide Digital Marketing & Research:<br />

Danielle DePalma<br />

VP, Publicity: Mike Rau<br />

SVPs, Theatrical Publicity: Meghann Burns,<br />

Karen Lucente<br />

SVP, Investor Relations & Exec.<br />

Communications: Peter Wilkes<br />

VP, Field Publicity & Promotions: Erin Lowrey<br />

www.facebook.com/lionsgate<br />

Twitter: @lionsgatemovies<br />


PO Box 205<br />

Laguna Beach, CA 92652<br />

(949) 494-1055<br />

Fax: (949) 494-2079<br />

info@macfreefilms.com<br />

www.macfreefilms.com<br />

Chairman: Greg MacGillivray<br />

Pres.: Shaun MacGillivray<br />

Dir. of Distribution: Patty Collins<br />

VP, Post Production: Stephen Judson<br />

Dir. of Marketing & Communications:<br />

Lori Rick<br />

Post-Production Coordinator:<br />

Matthew Muller<br />

Cinematographer: Brad Ohlund<br />

Assoc. Editor: Rob Walker<br />

www.facebook.com/macgillivrayfreeman<br />

Twitter: @macfreefilms<br />


49 West 27th St., 7th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10001<br />

(212) 924-6701<br />

62 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 62<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

Fax: (212) 924-6742<br />

info@magpictures.com<br />

www.magpictures.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

1614 W. 5th St.<br />

Austin, TX 78703<br />

(512)-474-0303<br />

Fax: (512)-474-0305<br />

Pres.: Eamonn Bowles<br />

EVP, Acquisitions: Dori Begley<br />

EVP, Marketing/Publicity: Matt Cowal<br />

Head of Theatrical Distribution: Neal Block<br />

Head of Home Entertainment: Randy Wells<br />

www.facebook.com/MagnoliaPictures<br />

Twitter: @MagnoliaPics<br />


2601 Ocean Park Blvd., Ste. 100<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90405<br />

(310) 452-1775<br />

Fax: (310) 452-3740<br />

neilf@menemshafilms.com<br />

www.menemshafilms.com<br />

Pres. & Founder: Neil Friedman<br />

www.facebook.com/menemshafilms<br />

Twitter: @menemshafilms<br />


P.O. Box 128<br />

Harrington Park, NJ 07640<br />

(800) 603-1104<br />

milefilms@gmail.com<br />

www.milestonefilms.com<br />

Co-Founders: Amy Heller, Dennis Doros<br />

www.facebook.com/pages/<br />

Milestone-<strong>Film</strong>/22348485426<br />

Twitter: @Milestone<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


77 Dean St.<br />

London, W1D 3SH<br />

Great Britain<br />

+44 (0) 20 7494 1724<br />

Fax: +44 (0) 20 7494 1725<br />

mistersmithent.com/<br />

CEO: David Garett<br />

COO: Dan Fisher<br />

EVP, Int’l Licensing & Distribution:<br />

Ralpho Borgos<br />

EVP, Marketing & Distribution: Jill Jones<br />


134 Peter St.<br />

Toronto ON, M5V 2H2<br />

CA<br />

(416) 646-2400<br />

momentumpictures@entonegroup.com<br />

www.momentumpictures.net<br />


1352 Dundas St. W<br />

Toronto, ON M6J 1Y2<br />

Canada<br />

(416) 516-9775<br />

Fax: (416) 516-0651<br />

info@mongrelmedia.com<br />

www.mongrelmedia.com<br />

Pres.: Hussain Amarshi<br />

www.facebook.com/mongrelmedia<br />

Twitter: @MongrelMedia<br />


125 Auburn Ct., #220<br />

Westlake Village, CA 91362<br />

(805) 494-7199<br />

acquisitions@montereymedia.com<br />

www.montereymedia.com<br />

CEO: Scott Mansfield<br />

CFO: Jere Rae-Mansfield<br />

Publicity Dir.: Darrell Rae<br />

www.facebook.com/montereymedia<br />

Twitter: @indyfilmz<br />


173 Richardson St.<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11222<br />

(718) 383-5352<br />

Fax: (718) 362-4865<br />

releases@monumentreleasing.com<br />

www.monumentreleasing.com<br />

Theatrical Distribution: Gavin Briscoe<br />

Marketing & Publicity: Jerry Li<br />

facebook.com/monumentreleasing<br />

Twitter: @MonumentDist<br />

Instagram: @MonumentReleasing<br />


173 N Morgan St.<br />

Chicago, IL 60607<br />

(312) 241-1320<br />

Fax: (773) 248-8271<br />

info@musicboxfilms.com<br />

www.musicboxfilms.com<br />

Pres.: William Schopf<br />

Dir. of Distribution & Acquisitions:<br />

Brian Andreotti<br />

Dir. of Home Entertainment Sales:<br />

Lisa Holmes<br />

Marketing & Publicity: Becky Schultz<br />

Theatrical Sales & Booking: Kyle Westphal<br />

facebook.com/musicboxfilms<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @musicboxfilms<br />


485 Lexington Ave., 3rd Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10017<br />

(212) 656-0724<br />

Fax: (212) 656-0701<br />

filmdist@ngs.org<br />

movies.nationalgeographic.com<br />

VP, <strong>Film</strong> Distribution: Antonietta Monteleone<br />

Dir., <strong>Film</strong> Distribution : John Wickstrom<br />

www.facebook.com/natgeomovies<br />

Twitter: @natgeomovies<br />

NEON<br />

580 Broadway, Ste. 1200<br />

New York, NY 10012<br />

hal@neonrated.com<br />

neonrated.com<br />

Founder & CEO: Tom Quinn<br />

Co-Founder: Tim League<br />

CMO: Christian Parkes<br />

COO: James Emanuel Shapiro<br />

EVP, Distribution: Elissa Federoff<br />

SVP, Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Sumyi Khong Antonson<br />

VP, Content & Digital Distribution:<br />

Jeff Deutchman<br />

VP, Publicity: Christina Zisa<br />

www.facebook.com/neonrated<br />

Twitter: @NEONrated<br />


100 Winchester Cir.<br />

Los Gatos, CA 95032<br />

(408) 540-3700<br />

netflix.com<br />

Founder & CEO: Reed Hastings<br />

CMO: Kelly Bennett<br />

Chief Content Officer: Ted Sarandos<br />


12301 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 600<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90025<br />

(310) 696-7575<br />

Fax: (310) 571-2278<br />

www.openroadfilms.com<br />

CEO: Tom Ortenberg<br />

SVP, Acquisitions: Lejo Pet<br />

EVP, Domestic Distribution: Elliot Slutzky<br />

EVP, Domestic Distribution: Scott Kennedy<br />

Pres. of Publicity: Liz Biber<br />

www.facebook.com/OpenRoad<strong>Film</strong>s<br />

Twitter: @OpenRoad<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


6725 W. Sunset Blvd., Ste. 230<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90028<br />

(212) 201-9280<br />

losangeles@theorchard.com<br />

www.theorchard.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

23 E 4th St., 3rd Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10003<br />

Founder & VP, Int’l: Scott Cohen<br />

Founder & CCO: Richard Gottehrer<br />

CEO: Brad Navin<br />

COO: Colleen Theis<br />

CTO: JP Lester<br />

EVP, <strong>Film</strong> & TV: Paul Davidson<br />

EVP & Gen. Counsel: Tucker McCrady<br />

SVP, Strategy: Prashant Bahadur<br />

www.facebook.com/theorchard<br />

www.linkedin.com/company/the-orchard<br />

Twitter: @orchtweets<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 63<br />

058-070.indd 63<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />


An MGM Company<br />

1888 Century Park E, 7 th Fl.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90067<br />

(310) 282-0550<br />

Pres.: John Hegeman<br />

EVP Distribution: Kevin Wilson<br />

Twitter: @OrionPicutres<br />


140 Havemeyer St.<br />

Brooklyn, NY 11211<br />

(212) 219-4029<br />

Fax: (212) 219-9538<br />

info@oscilloscope.net<br />

www.oscilloscope.net<br />

Pres.: Dan Berger<br />

Acquisitions: Aaron Katz<br />

Publicity: Sydney Tanigawa<br />

Sales: Andrew Carlin<br />

www.facebook.com/oscopelabs<br />

Twitter: @oscopelabs<br />


11 Broadway, Ste. 865<br />

New York, NY 10004<br />

(212) 480-9500<br />

contact@paladinfilms.com<br />

Pres.: Mark Urman<br />

SVP, Head of Marketing: Amanda Sherwin<br />

www.facebook.com/Paladin<strong>Film</strong>/<br />


2700 Colorado Ave.,<br />

Ste. 100<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90404<br />

(310) 255-4979<br />

info@pantelionfilms.com<br />

www.pantelionfilms.com<br />

CEO: Paul Presburger<br />

Chairman: Jim McNamara<br />

Co-Head of Marketing: Brenda Rios<br />

Dir. of Operations: Jacqueline Jimenez<br />

www.facebook.com/Pantelion<strong>Film</strong>s<br />

Twitter: @Pantelion<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


5555 Melrose Ave.,<br />

Marathon Building<br />

Hollywood CA, 90038<br />

(323) 956-5000<br />

Fax: (323) 956-4836<br />

paramount.com<br />

Chairman & CEO, Paramount<br />

Motion Picture Group: Jim Gianopulos<br />

Pres., Int’l Theatrical Marketing & WW Home<br />

Media Entertainment: Mary Daily<br />

Pres., Int’l Theatrical Distribution: Mark Viane<br />

Pres., Domestic Theatrical Distribution:<br />

Kyle Davies<br />

Co-Pres., Domestic Marketing:<br />

Rebecca Mall<br />

Co-Pres., Domestic Marketing:<br />

Peter Giannascoli<br />

EVP, WW Distribution Ops:<br />

Mark Christiansen<br />

EVP, Global Communication & Corporate<br />

Branding: Chris Petrikin<br />

SVP, WW Operations: Jim Smith<br />

SVP, WW Distribution Services: Liza Pano<br />

SVP, Non-Theatrical Sales: Joan Filippini<br />

SVP, In-Theatre Marketing: Patricia Gonzalez<br />

SVP, General Sales Manager: Joe Saladino<br />

VP, EMEA Int’l Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Richard Aseme<br />

VP, EMEA Int’l Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Yit-Ching Lee<br />

VP, Asia/Pacific Int’l Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Han Seng Lim<br />

VP, LATAM Int’l Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Ricardo Cortes<br />

facebook.com/Paramount<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @ParamountPics<br />


66 Palmer Ave., Ste. 13C<br />

Bronxville, NY 10708<br />

(646) 392-8831<br />

contact@picturehouse.com<br />

www.picturehouse.com<br />

Pres.: Jeanne R. Berney<br />

www.facebook.com/PicturehouseUS/<br />

Twitter: @PicturehouseUS<br />


18940 N. Prima Rd., Ste. 110<br />

Scottsdale, AZ 85255<br />

(480) 991-2258<br />

info@pureflix.com<br />

www.PureFlix.com<br />

COO: Stephen Fedyski<br />

CEO: Michael Scott<br />

Co-Founder: David A.R. White<br />

Managing Partner: Liz Travis<br />

VP of Int’l Sales & Distribution: Ron Gell<br />

facebook.com/PureFlix<br />

Twitter: @Pure_Flix<br />


1250 6th St., Ste. 101<br />

Santa Monica, CA 90401<br />

(310) 271-0202<br />

Fax: (424) 238-5682<br />

slester310@aol.com<br />

www.rainbowreleasing.com<br />

Pres.: Henry Jaglom<br />

Dir. of Distribution: Sharon Lester Kohn<br />


1588 US Hwy. 130<br />

North Brunswick, NJ 08902<br />

(212) 960-3677<br />

sumit.m.chadha@relianceada.com<br />

www.relianceentertainment.net<br />


120 E 23rd St., 5th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10010<br />

(212) 620-0986<br />

media@rialtopictures.com<br />

www.rialtopictures.com<br />

Co-Pres.: Bruce Goldstein, Adrienne Halpern<br />

National Sales Dir.: Eric Di Bernardo<br />

www.facebook.com/pages/Rialto-<br />

Pictures/128986880461942<br />

Twitter: @RialtoPictures<br />


The Trillum—East Tower<br />

6320 Canoga Ave., 8th Fl.<br />

Woodland Hills, CA 91367<br />

media@RLJEntertainment.com<br />

www.rljentertainment.com<br />

Pres., RLJE U.S: Sylvia George<br />

CEO: Miguel Penella<br />

Chief Acquisitions Officer, Feature <strong>Film</strong>:<br />

Mark Ward<br />

Chief Marketing Officer: Sylvia George<br />


7920 Sunset Blvd., Ste. 402<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90046<br />

(323) 882-8490<br />

Fax: (323) 882-8493<br />

info@roadsideattractions.com<br />

www.roadsideattractions.com<br />

Co-Pres.: Howard Cohen, Eric d’Aberloff<br />

Head of Marketing: Dennis O’Connor<br />

SVP of Distribution: Gail Blumenthal<br />

SVP of Publicity: David Pollick<br />

Sr. Dir., In-Theatre Marketing: Brian Flanagan<br />

Twitter: @roadsidetweets<br />


10100 Santa Monica Blvd., Ste. 2525<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90067<br />

(310) 203-5850<br />

info@sabanfilms.com<br />

sabanfilms.com<br />

Pres.: Bill Bromiley<br />

CFO: Shanan Becker<br />

SVP, Distribution, Sales & Marketing:<br />

Jonathan Saba<br />

SVP of Finance, Controller: Azniv Tashchyan<br />


9570 W Pico Blvd., Ste. 400<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90035<br />

(310) 860-3100<br />

Fax: (310) 860-3195<br />

info@samuelgoldwyn.com<br />

www.samuelgoldwynfilms.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

30 W 26th St., 3rd Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10010<br />

(212) 367-9435<br />

Fax: (212) 590-0124<br />

64 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 64<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

Pres.: Peter Goldwyn<br />

Sr. Dir., Sales & Marketing: Meg Longo<br />

Dir., Acquisitions & Theatrical Sales:<br />

Miles Fineberg<br />

Manager, Marketing & PR: Ryan Boring<br />

facebook.com/samuelgoldwynfilms<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @Goldwyn<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


10202 W. Washington Blvd.<br />

Culver City, CA 90232<br />

(310) 244-4000<br />

www.sonypictures.com<br />

Pres.: Clint Culpepper<br />

EVPs, Marketing: Danielle Misher,<br />

Damon Wolf<br />

EVPs, Production: Glenn Gainor,<br />

Scott Strauss<br />

EVP & Gen. Mgr.: Pamela Kunath<br />

EVP, Post Production: Brad Word<br />

SVP, Production: Eric Paquette<br />

SVP Creative Advertising: Alyson Jones<br />

SVP, Field Publicity & Promotions:<br />

Courtney Harrell<br />

VP, Marketing & Promotions:<br />

Kristie Alarcon<br />


800 3rd Ave.<br />

New York, NY 10022<br />

(212) 308-1790<br />

Fax: (212) 308-1791<br />

info@screenmedia.net<br />

www.screenmediafilms.net<br />

SVP, Int’l Sales: Almira Ravil<br />

SVP, Worldwide Acquisitions: Seth Needle<br />

VP, Business Affairs: Davic Fannon<br />

Dir. of Operations: Donna Tracey<br />

www.facebook.com/pages/<br />

Screen-Media-<strong>Film</strong>s/103301649764255<br />

Twitter: @ScreenMedia<strong>Film</strong><br />


P.O. Box 1246<br />

Waterville, ME 04903<br />

(207) 872-5111<br />

Fax: (207) 692-2482<br />

shadow@prexar.com<br />

www.shadowdistribution.com<br />

Pres. & Acquisitions: Ken Eisen<br />


10880 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 1600<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90024<br />

(310) 234-5200<br />

www.sho.com<br />

EVP, Corporate Communications:<br />

Johanna Fuentes<br />

SVP, Corporate Communications:<br />

Erin Calhoun<br />

www.facebook.com/showtime<br />

Twitter: @showtime<br />


25 Madison Ave., 24th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10010<br />

(212) 833-8833<br />

Fax: (212) 833-8844<br />

sony_classics@spe.sony.com<br />

www.sonyclassics.com<br />

Co-Pres.: Michael Barker, Marcie Bloom,<br />

Tom Bernard<br />

EVP, Operations: Grace Murphy<br />

EVP, Acquisitions: Dylan Leiner<br />

EVP, Marketing: Carmelo Pirrone<br />

SVP, Sales: Tom Prassis<br />

Exec. Dir. of Acquisitions: Seth Horowitz<br />

www.facebook.com/SonyClassics<br />

Twitter: @sonyclassics<br />


10202 W Washington Blvd.<br />

Culver City, CA 90232<br />

(310) 244-4000<br />

Fax: (310) 244-4337<br />

www.sonypictures.com<br />

Eastern Division:<br />

555 Madison Ave., 9th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10022<br />

(212) 833-7623<br />

Canada Office:<br />

1303 Yonge St., Ste. 100<br />

Toronto, Ontario M4T 1W6<br />

(416) 922-5740<br />

Chairman, SPE, Motion Picture Group:<br />

Tom Rothman<br />

Pres., Worldwide Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Josh Greenstein<br />

Pres., Sony Pictures Releasing: Adrian Smith<br />

EVP, Worldwide Operations, Marketing &<br />

Distribution: Paula Parker<br />

EVP, Worldwide Exhibitor Relations: Ann-<br />

Elizabeth Crotty<br />

EVP, Worldwide Marketing & Distribution &<br />

Strategic Partnerships: Scott Sherr<br />

SVP, Legal Affairs: Eric Gaynor<br />

SVP, Gen. Sales Mgr., Canada: Michael Brooker<br />

SVP, Worldwide Airline, Non-Theatrical &<br />

Repertory Sales: Rana Matthes<br />

VP, Worldwide Theatrical Financial<br />

Administration: Darryl Banks<br />

EVP & Gen. Sales Mgr.: Adam Bergerman<br />

SVP, Specialty Releases & MPAA Ratings:<br />

Wendy Armitage<br />

EVP, Gen. Sales Mgr., Western & Southern<br />

Region: Adam Bergerman<br />

SVP, Ratings Administration: Wendy Armitage<br />

SVP, Worldwide Distribution Analytics:<br />

Steven Tsai<br />

SVP, Worldwide Marketing & Distribution &<br />

Strategic Partnerships: Jonathan Gordon<br />

VP, Regional Sales: Janet Murray<br />

VP, WW Sales Operations: Dane Shigemura<br />

VP, Regional Sales: Patricia Dougherty<br />

VP, Regional Sales: Carla Jones<br />

VP, Sales: Lisa Mancini<br />

VP, Sales: Stella Leong<br />

VP, Print Operations: Rosemarie Ortiz<br />

VP, Non-Theatrical Sales & Marketing:<br />

Richard Ashton<br />

VP, WW Marketing & Distribution Operations<br />

& Strategic Partnerships: Tom Cotton<br />

VP, WW Marketing & Distribution Operation<br />

Strategy: Norman Tajudin<br />

VP, Marketing & Distribution Operations<br />

Strategy: Arjun Grover<br />

www.facebook.com/SonyPictures<br />

Twitter: @sonypictures, @sprER<br />


10202 W Washington Blvd.,<br />

Culver City, CA 90232-3195<br />

(310) 244-4000<br />

Chairman, SPE, Motion Picture Group:<br />

Tom Rothman<br />

Pres., WW Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Josh Greenstein<br />

Pres., Sony Pictures Releasing Int’l:<br />

Steven O’Dell<br />

EVP, Australia, NZ & Northern Asia:<br />

Stephen Basil-Jones<br />

EVP, WW Marketing & Distribution &<br />

Strategic Partnerships: Scott Sherr<br />

EVP, WW Exhibitor Relations:<br />

Ann-Elizabeth Crotty<br />

Sr. EVP, Int’l Distribution & Operations:<br />

Ralph Alexander<br />

SVP, Sales EMEA: Mark Braddel<br />

SVP, Specialty Releases & MPAA Ratings:<br />

Wendy Armitage<br />

SVP, WW Airline, Non-Theatrical &<br />

Repertory Sales: Rana Matthes<br />

VP, WW Theatrical Financial Administration:<br />

Darryl Banks<br />

SVP, Int’l Distribution, Asia: Brett Hogg<br />

EVP, WW Operations, Marketing &<br />

Distribution: Paula Parker<br />

VP, WW Sales Operations: Dane Shigemura<br />

VP, Non-Theatrical Sales & Marketing:<br />

Richard Ashton<br />

SVP, WW Marketing & Distribution &<br />

Strategic Partnerships: Jonathan Gordon<br />

SVP, WW Distribution Analytics: Steven Tsai<br />

SVP, Int’l Distribution: Andre Sala<br />

VP, WW Marketing & Distribution Operations<br />

& Strategic Partnerships: Tom Cotton<br />

VP, IPS: Stephen Foligno<br />

VP, WW Marketing & Distribution Operation<br />

Strategy: Norman Tajudin<br />


6140 W Washington Blvd.<br />

Culver City, CA 90232<br />

(310) 836-7500<br />

Fax: (310) 836-7510<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 65<br />

058-070.indd 65<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

strand@strandreleasing.com<br />

www.strandreleasing.com<br />

Co-Pres.: Jon Gerrans, Marcus Hu<br />

VP, Theatrical Sales & Acquisitions:<br />

Mike Williams<br />

VP, Home Entertainment & Acquisitions:<br />

Brandon Kirby<br />

Dir. of Digital Distribution & Acquisitions:<br />

Corey Gates<br />

Dir. of Acquisitions, Home Entertainment:<br />

Frank Jaffe<br />

Dir. of Non-Theatrical Sales & Acquisitions:<br />

Nathan Faustyn<br />

Dir. of Publicity & Acquisitions: Jenna Martin<br />

www.facebook.com/StrandReleasing<br />

Twitter: @strandreleasing<br />


1 Place du Spectacle<br />

Issy-Les-Moulineaux, 92130<br />

France<br />

+33 1 71 35 35 35<br />

gabrielle.tensorer@studiocanal.com<br />

www.studiocanal.com/en<br />

Branch Offices:<br />

50 Marshall St.<br />

W1F9BQ London, UK<br />

+44 020 7534 2700<br />

Neue Promenade 4<br />

D-10178 Berlin, Germany<br />

+49 30 810 969 0<br />

Chairman & CEO: Didier Lupfer<br />

Chief Financial & Strategy Officer:<br />

Elisabeth D’Arvieu<br />

EVP Int’l Production & Acquisitions: Ron Halpern<br />

EVP Production & Distribution France:<br />

Geraldine Gendre<br />

EVP Business & Legal Affairs: Sylvie Arnould<br />

VP Communication: Antoine Banet-Rivet<br />

EVP Human Resources: Valerie Languille<br />

CEO United Kingdom: Danny Perkins<br />

CEO Germany: Kalle Friz<br />

CEO Australia & New Zealand:<br />

Elizabeth Trotman<br />

EVP Int’l Distribution: Anna Marsh<br />

www.facebook.com/STUDIOCANAL/<br />

www.youtube.com/user/StudioCanal<br />

www.dailymotion.com/studiocanal<br />

Twitter, Instagram: @studiocanal<br />


3900 W. Alameda Ave., 32nd Fl.<br />

Burbank, CA 91505<br />

stxentertainment.com<br />

Domestic Distribution:<br />

Pres. of Domestic Distribution: Kevin Grayson<br />

EVP, Head of Theatrical Sales: Mike Viane<br />

VP & Assistant Head of Sales, Domestic<br />

Distribution: Shari Hardison<br />

VP, Theatrical Sales: Lisa DiMartino<br />

VP, Theatrical Sales: Ryan Markowitz<br />

Exec. Dir., Theatrical Sales: Sam Boskovich<br />

Manager, Theatrical Sales: Justin Hamilton<br />

VP of In-Theatre Marketing: Mark Mulcahy<br />

Coordinator, In-Theatre Marketing:<br />

Alysse Houliston<br />

SVP, Theatrical Distribution & Operations:<br />

Rob Springer<br />

Exec. Dir., Theatrical Accounts:<br />

Carina Stewart<br />

Exec. Dir. of Theatrical Operations:<br />

David Messinger<br />

Manager, Theatrical Distribution Analysis:<br />

Alex Keyes<br />

Coordinator, Distribution Operations:<br />

Isabel Meza<br />

Coordinator, Domestic Distribution:<br />

Rachel Levine<br />

Int’l Distribution:<br />

Pres. of Int’l Sales: John Friedberg<br />

Mgr. of Int’l Sales: Holly Hartz<br />

www.facebook.com/STXEntertainment<br />

Twitter: @STXEnt<br />


110 S 7th St.<br />

Philadelphia, PA 19106<br />

(215) 733-0608<br />

Fax: (215) 733-0668<br />

contact@tlareleasing.com<br />

www.tlareleasing.com<br />

Branch Office:<br />

12 Archer St.<br />

London W1D 7BB, United Kingdom<br />

+44 207 287 0605<br />

asilver@tlareleasing.com<br />

tlareleasing.co.uk<br />

Pres.: Derek Curl<br />

Operations Mgr., UK: Adam Silver<br />

www.youtube.com/tlareleasing<br />


A Sony Pictures Company<br />

10202 W Washington Blvd.<br />

Culver City, CA 90232<br />

(310) 244-4000<br />

www.sonypictures.com<br />

Chairman, SPE, Motion Picture Group:<br />

Tom Rothman<br />

Pres., TriStar Pictures, Inc.: Hannah Minghella<br />

SVP, Tristar Productions: Nicole Brown<br />

Creative Execs.: Shary Shiraz,<br />

Nick Krishnamurthy<br />


P.O. Box 900<br />

Hollywood, CA 90213<br />

(310) 369-1000<br />

Fax: (310) 369-3823<br />

www.foxmovies.com<br />

Atlantic Division Office:<br />

1211 Ave. of the Americas, 16th Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10036<br />

(212) 556-8600<br />

Fax: (212) 302-3069<br />

Pacific & Central Division Office:<br />

23975 Park Sorrento Dr., Ste. 300<br />

Calabasas, CA 91302<br />

(818) 876-7200<br />

Fax: (818) 876-7291<br />

Canada Office:<br />

33 Bloor St. E, Ste. 1106<br />

Toronto, Ontario M4W 3H1<br />

(416) 515-3354<br />

Fax: (416) 921-9062<br />

Chairman: Stacey Snider<br />

Exec. Dir., In-Theatre Marketing: Pablo Rico<br />

VP, In-Theatre Marketing: Susan Cotliar<br />

Dir., In-Theatre Marketing: Akira Egawa<br />

Dir., In-Theatre Marketing Canada:<br />

Darlene Elson<br />

www.facebook.com/FoxMovies<br />

Twitter: @20thcenturyfox<br />



A 20th Century Fox Company<br />

10201 West Pico Blvd., Bldg. 88<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90064<br />

(310) 369-1000<br />

Pres.: Tomas Jegeus<br />


10201 West Pico Blvd., Bldg. 88, 2nd Fl.<br />

Beverly Hills, CA 90035<br />

(310) 369-1000<br />

Fax: (310) 362-2299<br />

www.foxmovies.com<br />

Asia/Pacific Office:<br />

Fox Studios Australia Driver Ave.,<br />

Bldg. 61, Level 4<br />

Moore Park, Australia 1363<br />

Europe Office:<br />

31/32 Soho Square<br />

London W1D 3AP, England<br />

Japan Office:<br />

Aoba Roppongi Bldg., 6th Fl.<br />

3-16-33 Roppongi, Minato-Ku<br />

Tokyo 106-0032, Japan<br />

Latin America Office:<br />

Blvd. Manuel Avila Camacho, No. 40, Piso 12<br />

Torre Esmerelda<br />

Lomas de Chapultepec<br />

C.P. 11000, Mexico D.F<br />

Exec. Dir., Int’l Marketing: Laura Abele<br />

VP, Publicity: Kimberly Wire<br />

66 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 66<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM


13 Rue Henner<br />

Paris 75009, France<br />

+33<br />

Fax: +33<br />

contact@unifrance.org<br />

unifrance.org<br />

Gen. Dir.: Isabelle Giordano<br />

Pres.: Jean-Paul Salomé<br />

Deputy Dirs.: Gilles Renouard,<br />

Frédéric Bereyziat<br />


566 Chiswick High Rd., Bldg. 5<br />

London W4 5YF, Great Britain<br />

+44 (0) 20 3184 2500<br />

Fax: +44 (0) 20 3184 2501<br />

enquiries@uip.com<br />

www.uip.com<br />


100 Universal City Plaza<br />

Universal City, CA 91608<br />

(818) 777-1000<br />

www.universalstudios.com<br />

NBCUniversal:<br />

CEO, NBCUniversal: Steve Burke<br />

Vice Chairman, NBCUniversal: Ron Meyer<br />

EVP, Communications, NBCUniversal:<br />

Adam Miller<br />

EVP, Global Communications, Universal<br />

<strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment Group, &<br />

Corporate Affairs, NBCUniversal:<br />

Cindy Gardner<br />

Universal Pictures:<br />

Chairman, <strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment Group:<br />

Jeff Shell<br />

Chairman, Universal Pictures: Donna Langley<br />

Pres., Universal Pictures: James Horowitz<br />

Pres. & Chief Distribution Officer, Universal<br />

Pictures: Peter Levinsohn<br />

CFO, <strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment Group:<br />

Rowan Conn<br />

Gen. Counsel, <strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment Group:<br />

Clarissa Weirick<br />

Pres., <strong>Film</strong> Music & Publishing: Mike Knobloch<br />

Pres., Universal Brand Development:<br />

Vince Klaseus<br />

Pres., WW Universal Pictures Home<br />

Entertainment: Eddie Cunningham<br />

SVP, Strategy & Business Development:<br />

Pank Patel<br />

SVP, <strong>Film</strong> Strategy & Operations: Allison Ganz<br />

EVP, Global Communications, Universal<br />

<strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment Group, &<br />

Corporate Affairs, NBCUniversal:<br />

Cindy Gardner<br />

Global Head of Human Resources, <strong>Film</strong>ed<br />

Entertainment Group: Lissa Freed<br />

EVP, Business Affairs: Jeff Goore<br />

SVP, Global Talent Development & Inclusion,<br />

Universal Pictures: Janine Jones-Clark<br />

SVP, Media Relations & Global<br />

Communications, <strong>Film</strong>ed Entertainment<br />

Group: Evan Langweiler<br />

SVP, Global Communications, <strong>Film</strong>ed<br />

Entertainment Group: Jenny Tartikoff<br />

Universal Pictures Distribution:<br />

Pres., Domestic Distribution: Jim Orr<br />

EVP, In-Theatre Marketing: John C. Hall<br />

SVP, Distribution: Mia Matsuura<br />

SVP, In-Theatre Marketing: Scott Rieckhoff<br />

VP, Distribution Operations: Gary Chong<br />

Dir., In-Theatre Marketing: Kelvin Chiang<br />

Mgr. of Distribution Administration:<br />

Miranda Mayfield<br />

Mgr., Print Control: Betty Pollakoff<br />

Universal Pictures Production:<br />

Pres., Production: Peter Cramer<br />

Pres., Physical Production: Jeff LaPlante<br />

EVPs, Production: Erik Baiers, Jon Mone,<br />

Mark Sourian<br />

SVP, Production: Kristin Lowe<br />

VPs, Production: Maradith Frenkel,<br />

Jay Polidoro, Sara Scott<br />

Universal Pictures Marketing:<br />

Pres., WW Marketing: Josh Goldstine<br />

Co-Pres., WW Marketing: Michael Moses<br />

EVP, Creative Advertising: Maria Pekurovskaya<br />

EVP, Media Advertising: Suzanne Cole<br />

EVP, WW Creative Operations: Matt Apice<br />

EVP, Global Franchise Management & Brand<br />

Marketing: David O’Connor<br />

EVP, Creative Strategy & Research:<br />

Seth Byers<br />

EVP, Creative Content: Austin Barker<br />

EVP, Creative Design & Brand Strategy:<br />

Brian Robinson<br />

EVP, Digital Marketing: Doug Neil<br />

EVP, Publicity: Megan Bendis<br />

SVP, Creative Services: Julie Berk<br />

SVP, Creative Advertising: Patrick Starr<br />

SVP, Creative Advertising: Joe Wees<br />

SVP, Multicultural Marketing: Fabian Castro<br />

SVP, Global Promotions: Jill Brody<br />

SVP, Brand Marketing: Lauren Martin<br />

SVP, Digital Marketing: Justin Pertschuk<br />

SVP, Digital Assets: Stan Scoggins<br />

SVP, Integrated Marketing: Annah Zafrani<br />

SVP, Brand Marketing: Angie Sharma<br />

SVP, Publicity: Amanda Stirling<br />

VP, Special Events: Linda Pace<br />

VP, Market Research: Peter Marks<br />

VP, Field Publicity & Promotions:<br />

Brad Mendelson<br />

VP, Field Promotions: Julie Brantley<br />

VP, Broadcast Assets: Jason Burch<br />

VP, Media: Candace Chen<br />

VP, Digital Marketing: Sungmi Choi<br />

VP: Digital Marketing: Amy Cohen<br />

VP, Digital Marketing: Leigh Godfrey<br />

VP, Media: Lindsey Dye<br />

VP, Still Department: Bette Einbinder<br />

VP, Domestic Promotions Sales: Holly Frank<br />

VP, Brand Marketing: Calvin Conte<br />

VP, Creative Operations: Amie Hill<br />

VP, Marketing & Creative Global Promotions:<br />

Robert Hill<br />

VP, Media: Kristin Johnson<br />

VP, Brand Marketing: Elizabeth Latham<br />

VP, Broadcast Strategy: Tara Martino<br />

VP, Publicity: Alexandra Meltzer<br />

VP, Publicity: Jennifer Lopez<br />

VP, Creative Content: Anacani Munoz<br />

VP, Market Research & Strategy, Dani Paz<br />

VP, Brand Marketing: Ruthie Wittenberg<br />

VP, Creative Operations: Cendy Younan<br />

VPs, East Coast Publicity: Stacey Zarro,<br />

Peter Dangerfield<br />

Universal Pictures Int’l Theatrical<br />

Distribution & Marketing:<br />

Pres., Distribution, Universal Pictures Int’l:<br />

Duncan Clark<br />

EVP, Distribution, Universal Pictures Int’l:<br />

Niels Swinkels<br />

Pres., Marketing, Universal Pictures Int’l:<br />

Simon Hewlett<br />

SVP, Distribution Strategy and Operations:<br />

Noah Bergman<br />

SVP, Int’l. Creative Advertising: Rachel Staff<br />

(London Office)<br />

SVP, Int’l Publicity: Mark Markline<br />

VP, Int’l Publicity: Cathy Hsia<br />

VP, Int’l Publicity: Cortney Lawson<br />

Branch Offices: New York, Dallas,<br />

Los Angeles, Toronto<br />

Twitter: @UniversalPics<br />


2500 Broadway, Ste. F-125<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90404<br />

(424) 238-4456<br />

www.vert-ent.com<br />

Co-Pres.: Richard Goldberg, Mitch Budin<br />

Acquisitions & Marketing: Peter Jarowey<br />


6712 Hollywood Blvd.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90028<br />

(310) 701-0911<br />

Fax: (323) 390-3822<br />

info@vitagraphfilms.com<br />

www.vitagraphfilms.com<br />

Pres.: David Shultz<br />

Twitter: @vitagraphfilms<br />



500 S Buena Vista St.<br />

Burbank, CA 91521<br />

(818) 560-1000<br />

Fax: (818) 567-6303<br />

Marketing Coordinator, Cinema Partnerships:<br />

Samantha Black<br />

Marketing Coordinator, Cinema Partnerships:<br />

Stefanie Diaz-Decaro<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 67<br />

058-070.indd 67<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

President, WDSMP Sales & Distribution:<br />

Dave Hollis<br />

VPs of Cinema Partnerships: David Sieden,<br />

Ruth Walker<br />

Asst. Chief Counsel Legal Affairs:<br />

Rey Rodriguez<br />

SVP, WDSMP National Sales North America:<br />

Ken Caldwell<br />

VP, WDSMP Strategic Planning Administration<br />

& Operations: Paul Holliman<br />

VP, WDSMPD Non-Theatrical:<br />

Martin Sansing<br />

www.facebook.com/WaltDisneyStudios<br />

Twitter: @DisneyPictures<br />



500 S Buena Vista St.<br />

Burbank, CA 91521<br />

(818) 560-1000<br />

Fax: (818) 841-3225<br />

SVP, Sales & Distribution: Jeffrey Forman<br />

Pres., TWDC EMEA: Diego Lerner<br />

EVP/Country Mgr., Italy: Daniel Frigo<br />

VP, Global Sales Planning & Analytics:<br />

Dominic Hougham<br />

SVP, Int’l Marketing: Ticole Richards<br />

VP, European Publicity: Maggie Todd<br />

VP, APAC Sales & Marketing:<br />

David Kornblum<br />

VP/Managing Dir., Australia & New Zealand:<br />

Catherine Powell<br />

Gen. Mgr., Brazil: Jose Franco<br />

Exec. Dir., Marketing in Finland:<br />

Jussi Makela<br />

GM/Country Mgr., France:<br />

Jean-Francois Camilleri<br />

Gen. Mgr., TWDC APAC Singapore:<br />

Tom Batchelor<br />

VP/Gen. Mgr., Ireland: Trish Long<br />

GM, Joint Venture Office in Mexico:<br />

Philip Alexander<br />

Exec. Dir., Nordic Sales: Inger Warendorf<br />

Sr. VP/Gen. Mgr., Spain & Portugal<br />

(Iberia: Simon Amselem<br />

SVP/GM of Nordic: Casper Bjorner<br />

Country Mgr., Switzerland: Roger Crotti<br />

VP/Gen. Mgr., Taiwan: Laura Folta<br />

Country Mgr/Head of Studio Distribution,<br />

EMEA & UK: Tony Chambers<br />

www.facebook.com/WaltDisneyStudios<br />

Twitter: @DisneyPictures<br />



4000 Warner Blvd.<br />

Burbank CA, 91522<br />

(818) 954-6000<br />

warnerbros.com<br />

Pres., WW Marketing & Distribution:<br />

Sue Kroll<br />

Pres., WW Marketing: Blair Rich<br />

Pres., Domestic Distribution: Jeffrey Goldstein<br />

EVP & General Sales Mgr.: Scott Forman<br />

SVP & Assistant Gen. Sales Mgr.: Cary Silvera<br />

SVP & Gen. Counsel: Connie Minnett<br />

SVP, Exhibitor Marketing & Distribution<br />

Strategy: Kelly O’Connor<br />

SVP, Non-Theatrical Sales: Jeff Crawford<br />

SVP, Distribution Services: Stella Burks<br />

SVP, Sales Initiatives: Jennifer Amaya<br />

SVP, Sales Planning & Forecasting:<br />

Kevin Strick<br />

VP, Sales & Marketing, Non-Theatrical Sales:<br />

Angelica McCoy<br />

VP, Exhibitor Services: Melissa Aronson<br />

Exec. Dir., Exhibitor Services: Tanya Girmay<br />

Dir., Exhibitor Services: Michael Lynch<br />

Dir., Exhibitor Services: Francis Orante<br />

VP, Business Resources & Systems:<br />

Jocelyn Page<br />

VP, Eastern Division: Bobbie Peterson<br />

VP, Exhibition Innovation & Initiatives:<br />

Jeff Wilk<br />

VP, Midwestern Division: Gigi Lestak<br />

VP, North Atlantic Division: Andy Strulson<br />

VP, Sales Initiatives: Kim DiMarco<br />

VP, Southern Division: Ron MacPhee<br />

VP, Theatrical Revenue: Mary Weeks<br />

VP, Western Division: David Ogden<br />

VP, WW Distribution Planning: Vicki Evans<br />

facebook.com/warnerbrosent<br />

Twitter: @WBPictures<br />


4000 Warner Blvd.<br />

Burbank, CA 91522<br />

(818) 977-6278<br />

www.warnerbros.com<br />

Pres., Int’l Distribution & Growth Strategies:<br />

Veronika Kwan Vandenberg<br />

EVP, Int’l Distribution: Thomas Molter<br />

EVP, WW Theatrical Analytics & Planning:<br />

Nancy Carson<br />

EVP, Int’l Productions/Acquisitions & Latin<br />

America Distribution: Monique Esclavissat<br />

EVP, WW Operations & Finance, Theatrical<br />

Marketing & Distribution: David Brander<br />

SVP, WW Marketing & Distribution Finance:<br />

David Williamson<br />

SVP, Operations, Int’l Productions/<br />

Acquisitions & Latin America: Jack Nguyen<br />

SVP, Int’l Distribution: Brenda Danley<br />

SVP, Int’l Distribution: Tonis Kiis<br />

VP, Int’l Distribution: Karry Kiyonaga<br />

Pres., WW Marketing: Blair Rich<br />

Pres., Int’l Marketing & WW Planning &<br />

Operations: Lynne Frank<br />

EVP, Int’l Publicity: Lance Volland<br />

EVP, European Marketing: Con Gornell<br />

VP, Eastern European Sales: Jacques Dubois<br />

VP, European Theatrical Distribution:<br />

Sarig Peker<br />

Pres., France: Iris Knobloch<br />

SVP Theatrical, France: Olivier Snanoudj<br />

SVP, Marketing, Data & Innovation France &<br />

Benelux: Gregory Schuber<br />

Pres. & Managing Dir., Germany: Willi Geike<br />

SVP, Marketing: Tim Van Dyk<br />

VP Sales Theatrical Distribution:<br />

Volker Modenbach<br />

Managing Dir., Holland: Hajo Binsbergen<br />

Pres., Italy: Barbara Salabe<br />

SVP Joint Marketing: Barbara Pavone<br />

SVP Distribution & New Theatrical Ventures:<br />

Thomas Ciampa<br />

Managing Dir., Poland: Waldemar Saniewski<br />

SVP & Gen. Mgr., Spain: Pablo Nogueroles<br />

Managing Dir., Switzerland: Leo Baumgartner<br />

Managing Dir., Turkey: Banu Oruc<br />

Pres. & Managing Dir. WBUK, Spain & Harry<br />

Potter Global Franchise Development:<br />

Josh Berger<br />

EVP & Group Marketing Director, WBUK &<br />

Ireland & Chief Marketing Officer:<br />

Polly Cochrane<br />

VP & Deputy Managing Dir., UK:<br />

Neil Marshall<br />

EVP & Managing Director, China: Gillian Zhao<br />

EVP & Managing Director, Asia:<br />

Erlina Suharjono<br />

SVP, Marketing, Asia, Weelin Loh<br />

VP & Managing Dir., India: Denzil Dias<br />

Pres., Japan: Masami Takahashi<br />

VP Sales & Distribution: Kunio Yamada<br />

VP Marketing: Tomohiro Doai<br />

Gen. Mgr., Korea: Hyo-Sung Park<br />

Gen. Mgr., Philippines: Francis Soliven<br />

Managing Dir., Singapore: Peng-Hui Ng<br />

Gen. Mgr., Thailand: Henry Tran<br />

Gen. Mgr., Taiwan: Eric Shih<br />

Gen. Mgr., Argentina: Griselda Fortunato<br />

Gen. Mgr., Brazil: Patricia Kamitsuji<br />

Gen. Mgr., Puerto Rico: Carmen Velez<br />

www.facebook.com/warnerbrosent<br />

Twitter: @WarnerBrosEnt<br />


375 Greenwich St., 3rd Fl.<br />

New York, NY 10013<br />

(212) 941-3800<br />

Fax: (212) 941-3949<br />

www.weinsteinco.com<br />

www.facebook.com/weinsteinco<br />

Twitter: @Weinstein<strong>Film</strong>s<br />


3801 E. Plano Pkwy., Ste. 300<br />

Plano, TX 75074<br />

(972) 265-4317<br />

Fax: (972) 265-4321<br />

Jason@wellgousa.com<br />

www.wellgousa.com<br />

Chairman of the Board: Annie Walker<br />

Pres. & CEO: Doris Pfardrescher<br />

CFO & COO: Dennis Walker<br />

68 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

058-070.indd 68<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM


EVP of Sales: Tony Vandeveerdonk<br />

SVP, Global Digital Distribution:<br />

Jason Pfardrescher<br />

SVP, Acquisitions & Theatrical Distribution:<br />

Dylan Marchetti<br />

VP of Production: Eddie Mou<br />

Dir. of Marketing: Chrissy Walker<br />

www.facebook.com/WellGoUSA<br />

Twitter: @wellgousa<br />


21570 Almaden Rd.<br />

San Jose, CA 95120<br />

(408) 268-6782<br />

info@wolfereleasing.com<br />

www.wolfereleasing.com<br />

Pres.: Jim Stephens<br />

CEO: Kathy Wolfe<br />

www.facebook.com/WolfeVideo<br />

Twitter: @wolfevideo<br />


10685 Santa Monica Blvd.<br />

Los Angeles, CA 90025<br />

(310) 470-3131<br />

Fax: (310) 470-3132<br />

info@wrekinhill.com<br />

www.wrekinhillentertainment.com<br />

Pres. & CEO: Chris Ball<br />


Los Angeles, CA<br />

xlratormedia.com<br />

CEO: Barry Gordon<br />

Pres.: Michael Radiloff<br />

Operations: Barbara Javitz<br />

Publicity: Big Time PR<br />

Twitter: @XLratorMedia<br />


301 N. Harrison St., Ste. 9F-715<br />

Princeton, NJ 08540<br />

(516) 280-5662<br />

usoffice@yashrajfilms.com<br />

www.yashrajfilms.com<br />

Chairman: Aditya Chopra<br />

Head of Operations, North & South America:<br />

Vaibhav Rajput<br />

www.facebook.com/yrf<br />

Twitter: @yrfmovies<br />


333 W 39th St., Ste. 503<br />

New York, NY 10018<br />

(212) 274-1989<br />

Fax: (212) 274-1644<br />

mail@zeitgeistfilms.com<br />

www.zeitgeistfilms.com<br />

Instagram: www.instagram.com/zeitgeistfilms/<br />

Co-Pres.: Nancy Gerstman, Emily Russo<br />

www.facebook.com/Zeitgeist<strong>Film</strong>s<br />

Twitter, Instragram: @zeitgeistfilms<br />

Untitled-2 1<br />

neveR mIss an Issue:<br />

www.fILmjouRnaL.com/<br />

subscRIbe<br />


K<br />

enneth Branagh has had his morning<br />

espresso with honey—”brain food,”<br />

he says—i smartly dressed in suit,<br />

shirt and tie and ready to address the<br />

big question surrounding his new<br />

movie based on the Agatha Christie whodunit,<br />

Murder on the Orient Express.<br />

Branagh, who produces, directs and<br />

stars in the Fox release, sporting an extravagantly<br />

outsize moustache to play the<br />

Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, concedes<br />

that nearly everyone has eithe read the<br />

book or seen Sidney Lumet’s 1974 movie<br />

and knows just who dunnit.<br />

So, how to make it fresh and different?<br />

It was a question that came up constantly<br />

in the many production meetings<br />

before filming began. And Branagh dodges<br />

revealing the solution that was arrived at,<br />

saying enigmatica ly: “I’d have to ki l you if I<br />

told you a l that. I’ l say this: There’s mystery,<br />

bu there is rage and there’s loss and grief<br />

underneath it a l. And everybody has a story.<br />

“What we did was to create as much<br />

paranoia and suspicion as we could. As for<br />

the end of the movie and people’s familiarity<br />

with it, the who and the how and the<br />

why become rea ly important. And the<br />

why become something that gives us great<br />

suspense… We’ve had the chance to be<br />

inventive and a bit imaginative about how<br />

the story goes, so I think there are some<br />

surprises.”<br />

So that’s that. He is also cagey about<br />

how closely the plot of his film resembles<br />

Christie’s novel. “It’ sti l on a train and<br />

you sti l have many of the same characters,<br />

but how do you refresh it? Well, we have<br />

added some pieces, no question, so we give,<br />

for instance, a sense of who Poirot is earlier<br />

and differently in this film than is the case<br />

in the novel or the previous movie. Our<br />

inspiration comes from the novel, but we<br />

have also raided some of the other books.”<br />

He won’t even confirm that Edward<br />

Ratchett, the vi lainous American played<br />

this time by Johnny Depp, i sti l the murder<br />

victim, as he was in the book and the<br />

previous movie.<br />

We are talking in a marquee on the<br />

massive set at Longcross Studios in Surrey,<br />

where snowy mountains loom above<br />

a life-size replica of the famed Orient<br />

Express—a fu ly moving train comprised<br />

of an engine, a tender and four complete<br />

carriages and able to move along the nearly<br />

one mile of track that was laid down at<br />

what was once a Ministry of Defense tank<br />

testing site. A l the interiors of the carriage,<br />

the dining salon and sleeper cars were built<br />

a second time, with lavish interiors and<br />

floating wa ls to a low filming inside.<br />

On a nearby soundstage, a replica of<br />

Stamboul (now Istanbul) Station has been<br />

constructed, with huge columns, two tracks<br />

and platforms on either side, while on the<br />

back lot a viaduct has been built, with a<br />

mountainside and the mouth of a tunnel<br />

a the top.<br />

The train in the film i stalled by an<br />

avalanche rather than a snowdrift, with the<br />

passengers stranded on a perilously high<br />

bridge, and 56-year-old Branagh’s Poirot is<br />

physica ly much fitter than his predecessors.<br />

With the 13-week shoot finished, we<br />

talked again, this time a the Ham Yard Hotel<br />

in Soho, where in the nearby theatre most<br />

of his a l-star cast were posing for pictures.<br />

Depp is one of a big-name group of<br />

supporting characters who were happy<br />

to be cast in roles that, while larger than<br />







cameos, did not demand too much of<br />

their time. They include Miche le Pfeiffer,<br />

Penélope Cruz, Judi Dench, Derek Jacobi,<br />

Daisy Ridley, Wi lem Dafoe, Josh Gad and<br />

Olivia Colman.<br />

“They are a lovely group, aren’ they?”<br />

Branagh asks proudly. “You can te l that<br />

this is a group with rapport. A rea ly critical<br />

component was Judi Dench, who was<br />

the first person I cast. I asked her if she<br />

would do it and I hadn’t finished the question<br />

when she said yes.<br />

“Jud is a talismanic figure. Derek<br />

and Judi know each other from a thousand<br />

years ago; Johnny has worked with<br />

Judi and he worships her. She was like a<br />

weather vane. And also, she is always first<br />

there. She has trouble seeing, but she never<br />

complains about it.”<br />

Although he has a fierce intensity of<br />

focus, Branagh seems much more relaxed<br />

in the confines of a luxury hotel than he<br />

was on the fake snowy set at Longcross<br />

where he was juggling directing and acting<br />

duties while trying to keep his large cast<br />

happy and involved.<br />

“I tried never to waste their time,” he<br />

says. “Always ge them when they are in<br />

the mood, ge them on the train and shoot<br />

quickly. Rea ly shoot quickly because that<br />

is 16 actors times 16 makeup artists times<br />

16 costume assistants and so that becomes<br />

a bloody train carriage.”<br />

Kenneth Branagh is no stranger to<br />

both acting and directing, having doubled<br />

up 20 time since Henry V in 1989, which<br />

earned him Oscar nominations for both<br />

acting and directing.<br />

But he admits that Murder on the Orient<br />

Express was a tough task. Although he<br />

had stand-in who knew Poirot’s lines and<br />

did a sterling job, Branagh had to learn to<br />

speak French like a Belgian and to do so he<br />

had a voice coach and tapes to practice with.<br />

“Hours of tapes,” he says. “If my Jack Russe l<br />







Read the Latest Issue:<br />

zInIo.com oR amazon.com<br />

(search for film journal international)<br />

CineEurope Issue INTERNATIONAL<br />

July 2017<br />

<strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> international Exhibition GuidE<br />

Exhibition Guide<br />

publishing since 1934<br />

The Leading Publication for <strong>Film</strong> Exhibitors,<br />

with Essential Industry News and Reviews<br />

11/7/17 3:13 PM<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 69<br />

March 2017<br />

<strong>2018</strong> DISTRIBUTION GUIDE<br />

<strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> international C<br />

058-070.indd 69<br />

12/19/17 2:17 PM



VOL. 121, NO.1<br />

THE POST<br />

20TH CENTURY FOX/Color/1.85/115 Mins./Rated<br />

PG-13<br />

Cast: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Alison Brie, Carrie Coon,<br />

David Cross, Bruce Greenwood, Tracy Letts, Bob<br />

Odenkirk, Sarah Paulson, Jesse Plemons, Matthew<br />

Rhys, Michael Stuhlbarg, Bradley Whitford, Zach<br />

Woods, Jessie Mueller, Deirdre Lovejoy, Pat Healy,<br />

Philip Casnoff, John Rue, Stark Sands, Rick Holmes,<br />

Will Denton, Michael Cyril Creighton, Dan Bucatinsky,<br />

Austyn Johnson.<br />

Directed by Steven Spielberg.<br />

Written by Liz Hannah, Josh Singer.<br />

Produced by Kristie Macosko Krieger, Amy Pascal, Steven<br />

Spielberg.<br />

Executive producers: Tom Karnowski, Josh Singer, Adam<br />

Somner, Tim White, Trevor White.<br />

Co-producers: Liz Hannah, Rachel O’Connor.<br />

Director of photography: Janusz Kaminski.<br />

Production designer: Rick Carter.<br />

Editors: Sarah Broshar, Michael Kahn.<br />

Music: John Williams.<br />

Costume designer: Ann Roth.<br />

A DreamWorks, Amblin Entertainment, Pascal Pictures<br />

and Star Thrower Entertainment production.<br />

Spielberg’s timely Pentagon Papers drama<br />

is packed with great performances, none<br />

more impressive than Meryl Streep’s vulnerable<br />

turn as Katharine Graham, the newspaper<br />

heiress who defied the business world and<br />

the President himself.<br />

For his most taut and dashing movie since<br />

Munich, Steven Spielberg chose an unlikely<br />

subject: the publishing of the so-called Pentagon<br />

Papers in 1971. It’s not history that Spielberg<br />

tends to favor. There are no great battles<br />

or monumental court cases; well, there is the<br />

latter, but Spielberg whips right past it without<br />

pausing for gassy Amistad oratory. The<br />

heroes are neither grand orators nor men of<br />

action. Instead, they’re mostly disputatious<br />

ink-stained wretches in off-the-rack suits<br />

mixed in with a few townhouse grandees.<br />

Nevertheless, as uncinematic as reporting<br />

(on smudgy old newsprint no less!) about a<br />

bunch of Xeroxed studies done by the Rand<br />

Corporation would seem to be, the Pentagon<br />

Papers did arguably bring an end to the Vietnam<br />

War and took a chunk out of President<br />

Nixon’s hide just before Watergate brought<br />

him down. So, yes, there’s a hell of a movie<br />

here. And that’s before one even considers<br />

Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks.<br />

There are two stories going on in the<br />

screenplay deftly concocted by Liz Hannah<br />

and Josh Singer. The first is the more obvious<br />

history lesson. This one tells how military<br />

analyst Daniel Ellsberg (Matthew Rhys)—disenchanted<br />

after having Secretary of Defense<br />

Robert McNamara (Bruce Greenwood) agree<br />

after a Vietnam visit in 1966 that America<br />

wasn’t winning the war, only to see him<br />

proclaim victory to the press—decided to<br />

leak a classified report on the progress of the<br />

war. Once the story breaks in 1971 that the<br />

government knew the war was essentially lost<br />

years earlier but kept fighting and sacrificing<br />

thousands of young Americans to save face, it<br />

hits like a tidal wave.<br />

The big problem here for most of the<br />

characters in this movie? The New York Times<br />

got the story, not The Washington Post. This<br />

irks Post editor Ben Bradlee (Hanks), who’s<br />

snapping at the chance to take down the Times<br />

like a velociraptor going after a T. rex. “Any<br />

one else tired of reading the news?” he barks<br />

at his newsroom with the kind of gruff belligerence<br />

that Hanks hasn’t delivered for years.<br />

Bradlee’s eagerness to transform the Post<br />

from a sleepy local paper into a national player<br />

sets up the movie’s second and arguably more<br />

interesting story. Just as Ellsberg is slipping<br />

pages to the Times and Bradlee dispatches his<br />

reporters to beat the bush for any crumbs of<br />

the story to avoid getting scooped yet again,<br />

the paper’s publisher Katharine Graham<br />

(Streep) is undergoing her own crisis: the<br />

public offering of her previously private family<br />

company that runs the paper.<br />

Streep’s Graham is a sublime creation, at<br />

once a to-the-manner-born heiress who rules<br />

the Georgetown cocktail circuit and a shy and<br />

fluttery flibbertigibbet thrown off her game by<br />

the dark-suited men telling her how to handle<br />

the public offering. The Nixon Administration<br />

turns its full fury on the Times, denouncing<br />

them for publishing secret documents and<br />

threatening legal doom to any other papers<br />

that follow their lead; Spielberg uses real<br />

audio of Nixon’s telephone rants about the<br />

leaks here to frightening effect. The pressure<br />

put on Graham by her investors ratchets up<br />

to near panic level.<br />

By putting so much stock in Graham’s<br />

character, the movie keeps the audience from<br />

too easily siding with Bradlee’s charismatic<br />

band of pirates. As a woman in a man’s world<br />

suspected of being in her job because the<br />

predecessor was her deceased husband,<br />

Graham has potentially more to lose than<br />

anybody in the newsroom. Certainly, there’s<br />

a chance they could all go to jail, but the<br />

paper is her family and her legacy, not just her<br />

job. Although there is never an instant when<br />

the rightness of publishing stories about the<br />

classified material in the Pentagon Papers is<br />

seriously questioned, the movie doesn’t let us<br />

imagine it was an easy right choice.<br />

Spielberg plays the skittering triangulating<br />

tensions between the government, the Post<br />

and Graham’s investors so well it’s hard to<br />

imagine anybody checking their watch during<br />

this one. He’s helped along not just by the<br />

top-line stars, but a deep bench of less glittery<br />

talent, ranging from the various reporters<br />

played by Bob Odenkirk and David Cross,<br />

among others, to Graham’s advisors, particularly<br />

Bradley Whitford and Tracy Letts (who<br />

is quietly becoming one of Hollywood’s go-to<br />

guys for the voice of wry wisdom).<br />

A better thriller than Bridge of Spies and<br />

a cracking good journalism movie, The Post<br />

just about deserves ranking alongside All the<br />

President’s Men and Spotlight (the latter of<br />

which Singer co-wrote). It tells a history lesson<br />

without much Spielbergian speechifying<br />

and even makes a couple of pointed but subtle<br />

notes about the glass ceiling; the scene where<br />

Graham walks down the Supreme Court steps<br />

through a crowd of young women watching<br />

her with silent beaming pride is more powerful<br />

for being so quietly handled.<br />

There is triumph here, but it’s tempered<br />

with a timely reminder about abuses of<br />

power. The movie is in part about American<br />

journalism finally coming into its own as true<br />

investigative bloodhounds. But it also concludes<br />

on a sobering note that will remind<br />

audiences of their daily reality: a mad President<br />

raging into the night. —Chris Barsanti<br />


PARAMOUNT/Color/2.35/Dolby Digital/135 Mins./<br />

Rated PG-13<br />

Cast: Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz, Hong<br />

Chau, Udo Keir, Jason Sudeikis, Rolf Lassgård, Ingjerd<br />

Egeberg, Rune Temte, Margareta Pettersson, Soren<br />

Pilmark, Joaquim De Almeida, James Van Der Beek,<br />

Neil Patrick Harris, Laura Dern, Niecy Nash, Margo<br />

Martindale.<br />

Directed by Alexander Payne.<br />

Written by Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor.<br />

Produced by Megan Ellison, Mark Johnson, Alexander<br />

Payne, Jim Taylor, Jim Burke.<br />

Executive producer: Diana Pokorny.<br />

Director of photography: Phedon Papamichael.<br />

70 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 70<br />

12/19/17 3:42 PM

Untitled-1 1<br />

12/20/17 8:57 AM

Production designer: Stefania Cella.<br />

Editor: Kevin Tent.<br />

Music: Rolfe Kent.<br />

Visual effects supervisor: James E. Price.<br />

Costume designer: Wendy Chuck.<br />

An Ad Hominem Enterprises production, with Gran Via Prods.<br />

Experimental process leaves occupational<br />

therapist Paul Safranek five inches tall in a<br />

gentle sci-fi satire from director Alexander<br />

Payne.<br />

By turns exceptional and merely amusing,<br />

Downsizing applies director Alexander Payne’s<br />

familiar themes to a science-fiction adventure.<br />

A script bursting with timely ideas and<br />

a breakout performance by Hong Chau are<br />

the best elements of a movie that can feel<br />

sidetracked at times.<br />

Shot in the style of a brightly lit educational<br />

film, a sprightly prologue explains how<br />

Scandinavian scientists develop a process to<br />

miniaturize humans as an answer to overpopulation.<br />

At first a novelty, “downsizing”<br />

eventually leads to several colonies of little<br />

people across the world.<br />

The main attraction for occupational<br />

therapist Paul Safranek (Matt Damon) and<br />

his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig) is that their<br />

modest nest egg translates to a fortune in the<br />

small world. They leave their home in Omaha,<br />

Nebraska to undergo the procedure at Leisure<br />

Land in New Mexico in a sequence that<br />

makes great use of retro sci-fi visuals.<br />

But the results force Paul to confront<br />

a host of problems, old and new, in his life.<br />

It also gives Payne and his co-writer and<br />

longtime collaborator Jim Taylor the chance<br />

to question contemporary life with both sharp<br />

jabs and gentle asides.<br />

Class differences don’t disappear in Leisure<br />

Land. If anything, they are exacerbated by elites<br />

like black marketeer Dusan Mirkovic (Christoph<br />

Waltz), who casually oppresses workers<br />

housed in an off-site ghetto. One of them is<br />

Vietnamese dissident Ngoc Lan Tran (Hong<br />

Chau), who escapes imprisonment, forced<br />

miniaturization and the loss of her leg “so now<br />

she can clean my house,” as Dusan puts it.<br />

Downsizing makes its political points quickly,<br />

like a barroom argument that little people<br />

should only get one-eighth of a vote, or the<br />

huge wall that separates workers from Leisure<br />

Land mansions.<br />

Rather than hit easy targets, Payne and<br />

Taylor are more interested in what happens<br />

to Paul, who tries romance, hedonism, religion<br />

and whatever other system he can find<br />

in an effort to bring meaning and happiness to<br />

his life.<br />

Paul’s journey through an unfriendly world<br />

echoes ones in Payne’s earlier movies like<br />

Sideways, The Descendants and Nebraska. Downsizing<br />

gives answers that mainstream viewers<br />

probably don’t want to hear, and it does so<br />

with a rigorous logic that requires a lot more<br />

concentration than most Hollywood releases.<br />

But Downsizing offers extraordinary<br />

rewards. With her imperious tone and pidgin<br />

English, Tran may strike some as an uncomfortable<br />

stereotype. But the script adds<br />

intriguing layers to her character, and Chau’s<br />

performance is simply phenomenal. She is<br />

joined by Payne veterans like Laura Dern in an<br />

extremely strong cast.<br />

Phedon Papamichael’s classical lensing,<br />

Rolfe Kent’s smart score and Stefania Cella’s<br />

intriguing production design give Downsizing<br />

a hyper-realistic feel in which special effects<br />

are comparatively unimportant. Not all of the<br />

subplots and tangents in the movie feel entirely<br />

successful. But any filmmaker who can be this<br />

entertaining while raising such important topics<br />

deserves all the support he can get.<br />

—Daniel Eagan<br />


COLUMBIA/Color/2.35/Dollby Digital/119 Mins./<br />

Rated PG-13<br />

Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan,<br />

Nick Jonas, Bobby Cannavale, Alex Wolff, Madison<br />

Iseman, Ser’darius Blain, Morgan Turner, Rhys Darby,<br />

Marc Evan Jackson, Colin Hanks, Tim Matheson.<br />

Directed by Jake Kasdan.<br />

Screenplay: Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers, Scott Rosenberg,<br />

Jeff Pinkner.<br />

Screen story: Chris McKenna, based on the book Jumanji<br />

by Chris Van Allsburg.<br />

Produced by Matt Tolmach, William Teitler.<br />

Executive producers: David Householter, Jake Kasdan,<br />

Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia, Ted Field, Mike Weber.<br />

Director of photography: Gyula Pados.<br />

Production designer: Owen Paterson.<br />

Editors: Mark Helfrich, Steve Edwards.<br />

Visual effects supervisor: Jerome Chen.<br />

Music: Henry Jackman.<br />

Costume designer: Laura Jean Shannon.<br />

A Columbia Pictures presentation.<br />

Reboot of the book and film project sends<br />

an expert cast through a jungle journey as fun<br />

as it is exciting.<br />

With two of Hollywood’s biggest stars and<br />

a brainy but family-friendly script, Jumanji:<br />

Welcome to the Jungle is poised to cash in on<br />

holiday viewers who can’t get into Star Wars:<br />

The Last Jedi.<br />

Chris Van Allsburg’s wonderful children’s<br />

book from 1981 became a middling Robin<br />

Williams vehicle in 1995, followed by a TV<br />

series and videogames. A sequel more than<br />

20 years later may not sound promising, but<br />

Welcome to the Jungle works much better than<br />

expected thanks to its generous spirit and<br />

hard-working cast.<br />

The script flips Van Allsburg’s original<br />

premise, which brought the dangerous<br />

characters of a board game to life in a<br />

suburban home. Now, four kids are pulled<br />

into a videogame, where they must search<br />

for clues and succeed in a quest to return<br />

to their lives.<br />

The movie’s best twist is that the highschoolers<br />

turn into Jumanji avatars. Nerd<br />

Spencer (Alex Wolff) becomes hero Dr.<br />

Smolder Bravestone (Dwayne Johnson); selfabsorbed<br />

mean girl Bethany (Madison Iseman)<br />

turns into rotund cartographer Shelly Oberon<br />

(Jack Black); Spencer’s jock friend Fridge<br />

(Ser’darius Blain) is now sidekick Franklin<br />

“Moose” Finbar (Kevin Hart); and loner Martha<br />

(Morgan Turner) ends up mankiller Ruby<br />

Roundhouse (Karen Gillan).<br />

It takes a while to get the kids (who meet<br />

during detention) into their new bodies, and<br />

for director Jake Kasdan to explain the rules<br />

of Jumanji (mostly watch out for animals and<br />

Bobby Cannavale’s villain Van Pelt). Since it’s<br />

a videogame, some characters exist only to<br />

plant clues (in verse). The avatars have a few<br />

lives to spare, making their encounters with<br />

rhinos and mambas a little less fraught.<br />

Eventually Jumanji settles into chases and<br />

battles that are legitimately nerve-wracking,<br />

broken up by scenes typical for the genre. The<br />

avatars’ visit to a native bazaar is just like the<br />

shopping trips in Tomb Raider and Valerian. The<br />

difference here is the game’s avatars are still<br />

figuring out who they are.<br />

Johnson is a delight as an insecure teen in<br />

a weightlifter’s body, and his winning chemistry<br />

with Hart from Central Intelligence remains<br />

intact. Hart’s motormouth asides show why<br />

he is such an admired comic. Gillan does<br />

a hilarious bit trying to flirt with bad guys<br />

before employing her avatar’s “dance fighting”<br />

skills. And Black is a revelation, finding the<br />

bewildered heart of a social-media showoff<br />

without camping up her part.<br />

The characters have a certain self-awareness,<br />

but mostly avoid irony and snarkiness.<br />

They complain about their bodies, their<br />

costumes, even their genders, and can’t stand<br />

the clichés that unfold before them. One of Jumanji’s<br />

real pleasures is how it delivers exactly<br />

what they fear the most—the bimbo clothes,<br />

the deadly booby-traps, the snarling threats—<br />

only to top their expectations.<br />

Like a good family film, everyone here has a<br />

lesson to learn—including viewers, who are gently<br />

reminded about tolerance. The action scenes<br />

are satisfying, and the effects fun, if not earthshaking.<br />

But the best thing about Jumanji: Welcome<br />

to the Jungle may be how well-crafted it is.<br />

—Daniel Eagan<br />


SONY PICTURES CLASSICS/Color/2.35/111 Mins./<br />

Rated R<br />

Cast: Helen Mirren, Donald Sutherland, Christian McKay,<br />

Janel Moloney, Dana Ivey, Dick Gregory.<br />

Directed by Paolo Virzi.<br />

Screenplay: Stephen Amidon, Francesca Archibugi,<br />

Francesco Piccolo, Paolo Virzi, based on the novel by<br />

Michael Zadoorian.<br />

Produced by Fabrizio Donvito, Marco Cohen, Benedetto<br />

Habib.<br />

Executive producers: Alessandro Mascheroni, Dov<br />

Mamann, Daniel Campos Pavoncelli, Cobi Benatoff,<br />

David Grumbach, Mathieu Robinet, Gilles Sousa, Bryan<br />

Thomas.<br />

Director of photography: Luca Bigazzi.<br />

Production designer: Richard A. Wright.<br />

Editors: Jacopo Quadri.<br />

Music: Carlo Virzi<br />

Costume designer: Massimo Cantini Parrini.<br />

An Indiana Prods. and RAI Cinema production, in<br />

collaboration with Motorino Amaranto and 3 Marys<br />

Entertainment<br />

72 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 72<br />

12/19/17 3:42 PM

A somewhat generic but mostly agreeable<br />

road-trip movie about a long-married couple<br />

(Donald Sutherland and Helen Mirren) on<br />

their final vacation.<br />

Mounting predictability and a few credibilityfree<br />

scenes notwithstanding, Paolo Virzi’s The<br />

Leisure Seeker is an engaging road-trip movie<br />

about two still-ambulatory seniors who are<br />

nonetheless circling the drain. It’s John and<br />

Ella Spencer’s (Donald Sutherland and Helen<br />

Mirren) final vacation in their beloved 1975<br />

Winnebago, which they’ve dubbed “the leisure<br />

seeker.”<br />

Deterioration, death, dying and “choosing”<br />

how one dies—hot-button issue, that<br />

one—are the thematic motifs coupled<br />

with gentle life-affirming comedy and, yes,<br />

romance. After 60 years of marriage, the<br />

Spencers continue to be in love and are more<br />

committed to each other than ever.<br />

Loosely adapted from Michael Zadoorian’s<br />

highly readable, entertaining yet poignant<br />

novel, The Leisure Seeker recounts the Spencers’<br />

adventures on that fateful expedition as<br />

they travel down the East Coast along Route<br />

1 from their home in Wellesley, Mass., to Key<br />

West, Florida, where John, a retired English<br />

professor and Hemingway authority, will visit<br />

the iconic writer’s stomping ground. While<br />

John enjoys moments of astonishing lucidity—he<br />

knowledgeably discusses lofty literary<br />

topics, quoting verbatim from one source or<br />

another—he’s suffering from dementia; much<br />

of the time he’s confused, forgetful and childlike<br />

(in some ways the male counterpart to<br />

Alice Howland in Still Alice).<br />

Ella, his junior by at least ten years, is<br />

mentally intact though gravely ill. She’s often<br />

in pain, popping pills, and sports a wig. It<br />

doesn’t take too much insight to surmise she<br />

has cancer. (This movie has its share of suds.)<br />

Still, for the most part she is cheerful and<br />

relentlessly chatty, offering personal tidbits (in<br />

an inconsistent Southern accent) to anyone<br />

she encounters. When she’s not prattling away<br />

to strangers, she’s John’s caretaker and guiding<br />

force. In the novel, she’s the narrator.<br />

The Spencers have two grown children,<br />

the laid-back Jane (Janel Moloney) and the<br />

frenetic Will (Christian McKay), the latter<br />

spinning his wheels at what he views as an<br />

imprudent misstep on the part of his parents.<br />

But the Spencers refuse to be caged in by<br />

their children, doctors or anyone else. They’ve<br />

upped and left without telling a soul. This is<br />

yet another Virzi testimonial to freedom, a<br />

trope he sentimentally dramatized in his film<br />

Like Crazy, about two mental patients who<br />

escape an asylum and take to the road.<br />

Along the way, the Spencers make stops<br />

at diners, historic theme parks and campsites<br />

where nightly Ella sets up a slide show,<br />

projecting pictures of their earlier vacations<br />

onto a screen in an effort to jog John’s<br />

failing memory. Their excursion includes an<br />

encounter with thugs who hold them up (the<br />

confrontation has become de rigueur in roadtrip<br />

pics), and in another scene Ella slips onto<br />

the floor, John falls on top of her and both are<br />

immobilized. The accident telegraphs their dilapidation<br />

and interdependence. Indeed, their<br />

disintegration forges a greater bond between<br />

them. The film successfully captures their<br />

intimacy on many fronts.<br />

Still, festering wounds resurface and<br />

secrets are exposed. The genre has come to<br />

demand these revelations, and here they’re<br />

particularly jarring. In his befuddlement John<br />

can’t stop harping on Ella’s first boyfriend, Dan<br />

Coleman, whom he’s convinced she’s had an<br />

ongoing affair with throughout their marriage.<br />

To put that notion to rest, Ella tracks down<br />

Dan in a nursing home where he now resides.<br />

She hasn’t seen the man in 60-plus years,<br />

yet sets out to visit him with John in tow.<br />

Dan (Dick Gregory in his final role) is now<br />

wheelchair-bound and has no recollection of<br />

who she is. Everything about the section is<br />

fakery beyond redemption, short of Gregory’s<br />

fine performance<br />

Also out of left field and equally contrived,<br />

at one point John confuses Ella for a neighbor<br />

with whom he had a two-year sexual relationship<br />

years earlier. Hallucinating, he spills all!<br />

Naturally, Ella was clueless and now, in an<br />


Announcing<br />

a NEW<br />


Pricing<br />

Model!<br />


Omniterm software provides twenty-five modular applications serving customers<br />

ranging from independent theatres to large enterprise head-office circuits.<br />

Our system is powered by an amazing software engine –<br />

info@omniterm.com Toll Free 1.866.629.4757 omniterm.com<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 73<br />

070-082.indd 73<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

enraged tailspin (a spurious response if ever<br />

there was one), she unceremoniously deposits<br />

John in the nearest nursing home. Admittedly,<br />

she calms down, picks him up later and they<br />

continue on their journey. But what has been<br />

gained by any of it? The viewer shouldn’t be<br />

asked to endure these gratuitous intrusions.<br />

Still, the chemistry between the two actors<br />

is palpable and a lifetime is evoked. Exasperated<br />

at John’s decline, Ella plaintively asks,<br />

“What is going on in that brain of yours?” and<br />

when he voices a cogent, clear-headed moment,<br />

Ella celebrates his “coming back” to her<br />

as the John she knew and loved. It’s a touching<br />

interlude made all the more so in light of its<br />

short duration. Within seconds, he is groping<br />

for words and unsure of where he is.<br />

Sutherland gives a great performance.<br />

No one conjures up the professorial persona<br />

better than he does, whatever the character’s<br />

mental competence. Who can forget<br />

his stoned prof in Animal House? Mirren is, as<br />

always, a consummate pro, though her intermittent<br />

Southern accent is distracting. It’s not<br />

clear why she had to be Southern at all.<br />

Perhaps because it’s Virzi’s first Americanbased<br />

film and thus a somewhat alien universe<br />

to him, The Leisure Seeker feels generic. It<br />

doesn’t, for example, have the nuance of the<br />

recently released Our Souls at Night, also a<br />

senior romance with Jane Fonda and Robert<br />

Redford, or for that matter 5 Flights Up, a<br />

touching 2014 film with Morgan Freeman and<br />

Diane Keaton, or the most moving of the<br />

lot, I’ll See You in My Dreams (2015), featuring<br />

Blythe Danner and Sam Elliott. Still, to the<br />

degree that The Leisure Seeker represents,<br />

whatever its flaws, mature lovers for whom<br />

the journey is now the destination, there’s<br />

something to celebrate. —Simi Horwitz<br />


20TH CENTURY FOX/Color/2.35/Dolby Digital/<br />

105 Mins./Rated PG<br />

Cast: Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron,<br />

Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Keala Settle, Paul Sparks,<br />

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Austyn Johnson, Cameron<br />

Seely, Sam Humphrey, Will Swenson, Byron Jennings,<br />

Betsy Aidem, Damian Young, Tina Benko, Gayle<br />

Rankin, Shuler Hensley.<br />

Directed by Michael Gracey.<br />

Screenplay: Jenny Bicks, Bill Condon.<br />

Story: Jenny Bicks.<br />

Produced by Laurence Mark, Peter Chernin, Jenno<br />

Topping.<br />

Executive producers: James Mangold, Donald J. Lee, Jr.,<br />

Tonia Davis.<br />

Director of photography: Seamus McGarvey.<br />

Production designer: Nathan Crowley.<br />

Editors: Tom Cross, Robert Duffy, Joe Hutshing, Michael<br />

McCusker, Jon Poll, Spencer Susser.<br />

Costume designer: Ellen Mirojnick.<br />

Songs: Benj Pasek, Justin Paul.<br />

Music score: John Debney, John Trapanese.<br />

Choreography: Ashley Wallen.<br />

A 20th Century Fox presentation of a Laurence Mark/<br />

Chernin Entertainment production.<br />

Eager-to-please musical about the struggles<br />

of pioneering impresario P.T. Barnum will<br />

have devotees and detractors.<br />

The movie musical has made somewhat of a<br />

comeback in the 21st century, with box-office<br />

hits (and sometime award winners) like the<br />

Broadway adaptations Chicago, Dreamgirls,<br />

Mamma Mia!, Sweeney Todd and Les Misérables.<br />

But original movie musicals are a rarer species:<br />

The 2000s have brought us Moulin Rouge (not<br />

so original with its recycled pop songs), the<br />

animated blockbuster Frozen, the intimate<br />

Once, and last year’s almost-Best Picture, La<br />

La Land. The latter was equally beloved and<br />

reviled, and the same divided reactions will<br />

likely greet The Greatest Showman, the ambitious,<br />

go-for-broke musical gloss of the life of<br />

impresario P.T. Barnum, with songs from the<br />

fecund La La Land/Dear Evan Hansen team of<br />

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.<br />

“This is the greatest show!” blares the<br />

cast in the opening number and, dammit,<br />

they’re going to overexert every muscle to<br />

get you to agree. Though the film is set in the<br />

mid-1800s, it takes the anachronistic Moulin<br />

Rouge route of conveying its show-biz origin<br />

tale with a decidedly modern, decidedly pop<br />

sensibility. Call it the Hamilton effect: How<br />

else are you going to deliver a young audience<br />

to an American history lesson? The fluffy<br />

songs would be right at home on a Katy Perry<br />

album, but as earworms they do their job.<br />

So does Hugh Jackman, who is charismatically<br />

ideal casting for the role of a dynamo like<br />

Barnum, the poor son of a Connecticut tailor<br />

whose drive and imagination led him to a literally<br />

sensational career in New York City as<br />

the founder of a museum specializing in exotic<br />

displays, including live attractions like bearded<br />

ladies, tiny “General” Tom Thumb and the<br />

Siamese twins Chang and Eng. In pursuit of a<br />

higher-class clientele, he also recruited Swedish<br />

opera singer Jenny Lind and made her an<br />

American superstar.<br />

Jenny Bick and Bill Condon’s screenplay<br />

is not a faithful retelling of Barnum’s life: His<br />

chaste (at least here) relationship with Lind<br />

may or may not have put a strain on his marriage<br />

to his devoted, moneyed wife, Charity<br />

(Michelle Williams), and scorn for his family of<br />

“oddities” may or may not have sparked the<br />

fire that engulfed his grand museum. (In fact,<br />

Barnum had not one but two establishments<br />

destroyed by fire.) The script also fabricates<br />

a business partner for Barnum, Phillip Carlyle<br />

(Zac Efron), a well-to-do theatrical producer<br />

who runs away to the circus (and an interracial<br />

romance with a trapeze artist played by<br />

the singer Zendaya). That daring relationship<br />

is but one facet of the movie’s underlined and<br />

bold-faced 21st-century message of acceptance<br />

of society’s outcasts.<br />

There’s nothing subtle about The Greatest<br />

Showman, but its high style and relentless<br />

energy may very well seduce willing audience<br />

members. Australian commercials director<br />

Michael Gracey makes a confident feature debut,<br />

abetted by the craft of cinematographer<br />

Seamus McGarvey (Atonement) and especially<br />

production designer Nathan Crowley<br />

(Dunkirk, The Dark Knight). Jackman, Williams,<br />

Efron and Zendaya are all up for the challenges<br />

of their big numbers (with Zendaya and<br />

Efron outdoing Pink on their trapeze duet),<br />

and big-voiced Keala Settle as bearded lady<br />

Lettie Lutz stops the show with the Golden<br />

Globe-nominated “This Is Me.” And Rebecca<br />

Ferguson makes a stunning and elegant Jenny<br />

Lind, even if her powerhouse singing is dubbed<br />

by Loren Allred.<br />

Sort of like John Stephens pre-emptively<br />

labeling himself a “Legend,” The Greatest Showman<br />

insists that you’ll have a great time. If its immodesty<br />

doesn’t seem too irksome, you just might.<br />

—Kevin Lally<br />


WALT DISNEY/Color/2.35/Dolby Atmos &<br />

DTS:X/152 Mins./Rated PG-13<br />

Cast: Daisy Ridley, Mark Hamill, John Boyega, Adam<br />

Driver, Carrie Fisher, Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson,<br />

Laura Dern, Benicio Del Toro, Kelly Marie Tran, Andy<br />

Serkis, Gwendoline Christie, Billie Lourd, Justin Theroux,<br />

Lupita Nyong’o, Anthony Daniels, Jimmy Vee.<br />

Written and directed by Rian Johnson.<br />

Produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Ram Bergman.<br />

Executive producers: J.J. Abrams, Tom Karnowski, Jason<br />

McGatlin.<br />

Director of photography: Steve Yedlin.<br />

Production designer: Rick Heinrichs.<br />

Editor: Bob Ducsay.<br />

Music: John Williams.<br />

Costume designer: Michael Kaplan.<br />

Visual effects supervisor: Richard Bain.<br />

A Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures presentation of a<br />

Lucasfilm production.<br />

With Rian Johnson, the keys to the Star<br />

Wars franchise are in the right hands.<br />

When Disney announced its purchase of<br />

Lucasfilm, there were some concerns in fan<br />

corners—this fan among them—that the<br />

franchise from a galaxy far, far away would suffer<br />

homogenization at the hands of the Mouse<br />

House. They’ve done it with the Marvel Cinematic<br />

Universe over the years, after all, and<br />

reports of existing characters like Han Solo<br />

and Obi-Wan Kenobi getting prequel spinoffs<br />

isn’t exactly indicative of a commitment to<br />

originality. J.J. Abrams’ The Force Awakens, for<br />

all it was an excellent start to a new Star Wars<br />

trilogy, was essentially a soft remake of A New<br />

Hope, with a new trio of adventurers standing<br />

in for Luke, Leia and Han. Some sparks of risktaking<br />

showed in Gareth Edwards’ Rogue One,<br />

which abandoned the traditional space-opera<br />

formula in lieu of a war movie populated<br />

mostly by previously unknown characters.<br />

With The Last Jedi, director Rian Johnson<br />

mixes up the formula even more, to wonderful<br />

effect. Official apologies are extended to<br />

Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. I’m<br />

sorry I ever doubted you.<br />

On the surface, The Last Jedi is par for the<br />

Star Wars course. As with 1980’s The Empire<br />

Strikes Back, we start with a group of scrappy<br />

rebels—led by General Leia Organa (the late<br />

Carrie Fisher) with the support of protégé<br />

Poe (a dashing Oscar Isaac)—staring down<br />

the barrel of imminent destruction. There are<br />

74 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 74<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

space battles and splashy, eye-catching locations,<br />

like the Jedi island temple of Ahch-To<br />

and the one-percenter casino planet Canto<br />

Bight. If some of these detours drag on a bit,<br />

hampering momentum and bulking up The Last<br />

Jedi’s not-entirely-necessary two-hour-and<br />

32-minute runtime, well, at least the various<br />

locales are fun to look at. It’s Star Wars. They<br />

always are.<br />

Old favorites are present, notably Leia and<br />

Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), who’s gone from<br />

a wide-eyed farm boy to a grizzled cynic. In an<br />

unexpected but thoroughly welcome move,<br />

Hamill gets to show off his comedy chops in<br />

a way the original trilogy never really let him.<br />

Domhnall Gleeson, in a small but delightful role,<br />

does his best Peter Cushing as scenery-gnawing<br />

First Order villain General Hux. Some new<br />

characters are in play, the most prominent being<br />

Kelly Marie Tran’s Rose, who teams up with<br />

Finn (John Boyega) for a side adventure. There<br />

are a lot of characters at play here, but Johnson<br />

weaves them together all but flawlessly. Every<br />

character gets their moment, and even less<br />

prominent characters—like Benicio Del Toro’s<br />

scoundrel DJ or Laura Dern’s Rebel leader Amilyn<br />

Holdo—feel fleshed-out despite a dearth of<br />

screen time.<br />

Two characters not mentioned yet are<br />

Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Kylo Ren (Adam<br />

Driver)—and it’s with them that The Last Jedi<br />

really takes flight. The age-old conflict between<br />

good and evil, light and dark, has always<br />

been the driving force (sorry) of the Star Wars<br />

franchise. In how he interweaves the evolution<br />

of aspiring Jedi Rey and aspiring Sith Kylo Ren,<br />

Johnson deepens the Star Wars mythology,<br />

complicates it—makes The Last Jedi nothing<br />

less than the smartest, most nuanced, most<br />

ambitious Star Wars film ever made.<br />

In doing so, Johnson widens the Star Wars<br />

story, taking it from what it was—a relatively<br />

personal saga of the Skywalker family, their<br />

inner dramas and interpersonal conflicts writ<br />

large across a galactic stage—to what it has<br />

to be in order to move forward: a sprawling,<br />

epic, full-fledged mythology that finally feels like<br />

it’s stretching its fingers to the very edge of a<br />

galaxy far, far away. —Rebecca Pahle<br />


FOCUS FEATURES/Color/1.85/Dolby Digital/<br />

132 Mins./Rated R<br />

Cast: Daniel Day-Lewis, Vicky Krieps, Lesley Manville,<br />

Camilla Rutherford, Gina McKee, Brian Gleeson,<br />

Harriet Sansom Harris, Lujza Richter, Julia Davis.<br />

Written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson.<br />

Produced by Joanne Sellar, Paul Thomas Anderson, Megan<br />

Ellison, Daniel Lupi.<br />

Executive producers: Adam Somner, Peter Heslop, Chelsea<br />

Barnard.<br />

Director of photography: Paul Thomas Anderson<br />

(uncredited).<br />

Production designer: Mark Tildesley.<br />

Editor: Dylan Tichenor.<br />

Costume designer: Mark Bridges.<br />

Music: Jonny Greenwood.<br />

An Annapurna, Perfect World Pictures and Joanne Sellar/<br />

Ghoulardi <strong>Film</strong> Company production.<br />

The mystery of artistic creation—in this<br />

case, high-fashion gowns—is pretentiously<br />

probed here by Paul Thomas Anderson and<br />

Daniel Day-Lewis in a too self-conscious and<br />

somewhat enervative style.<br />

The golden age of haute couture—that most<br />

rarefied and costly of fashion, requiring dozens<br />

of seamstresses toiling over one dress<br />

for a small eternity, to be sold at a prohibitive<br />

cost to only the most wealthy—reached<br />

its peak in the 1950s. Holding sway over<br />

this most exclusive of butterfly worlds were<br />

genius designers like Christian Dior, Jacques<br />

Fath, Pierre Balmain, Hubert de Givenchy<br />

and the two acknowledged innovative masters<br />

of this art, wild and crazy Charles James,<br />

whose sculptural gowns were complexly<br />

structured so as to be practically architecture,<br />

and sober, discreet Cristobal Balenciaga,<br />

whose wildly coveted clothes reflected<br />

the quiet elegance and deceptive simplicity of<br />

the man himself.<br />

There really has never been a film dealing<br />

with this subject and period…until now. In<br />

tackling it, appropriate names like Vincente<br />

Minnelli or Pedro Almodóvar or even Tom<br />

Ford might spring to mind, so it is all the<br />

more surprising that Paul Thomas Anderson,<br />

a director more known for gritty subjects as<br />

in Boogie Nights, Inherent Vice and There Will<br />

Be Blood, has undertaken the task. Supposedly<br />

inspired by the need to do something<br />

“fancy,” he’s said, after Inherent Vice, as well<br />

as a spate of illness during which he was<br />

faced with the novelty of his wife suddenly<br />

being in charge of him while he steeped<br />

himself in fashion publications, Anderson<br />

approaches his theme with a well-researched<br />

reverence. This quality is shared by his star,<br />

Daniel Day-Lewis, who has revealed that he<br />

even learned to sew for the role of eminent,<br />

eminently difficult and temperamental designer<br />

Reynolds Woodcock and, at a recent<br />

Q&A after a screening, was dropping obscure<br />

fashion designer names like Victor Stiebel as<br />

if he were Anna Wintour.<br />

Day-Lewis has also announced that this<br />

decidedly offbeat role will be his swan song<br />

from acting, and it’s interesting to think that,<br />

if true, he is going out in a gay role, like the<br />

one in My Beautiful Laundrette that helped<br />

put him on the map some 30 years ago.<br />

Woodcock is, to put it mildly, very set in his<br />

ways, something that his devoted if toopresent<br />

sister and lifelong business partner,<br />

Cyril (Lesley Manville), has learned to live<br />

with, however much it may chafe. Almost<br />

the very definition of stuffy Englishman and<br />

then some, Woodcock insists on his idea<br />

of perfection in everything, whether it’s his<br />

lavish garments or the level of noise he can<br />

abide at breakfast (i.e., none), and his Paris<br />

workspace and home are beyond pristine<br />

in their excruciatingly ordered refinement.<br />

Woodcock is both obsessed and subsumed<br />

by his work, with something of a fanatic’s<br />

reluctance to even let a dress leave his salon,<br />

although bought and paid for.<br />

One of the most diverting scenes<br />

involves a deeply neurotic heiress (think Barbara<br />

Hutton), played to a quiveringly neurotic<br />

fare-thee-well by stage treasure Harriet Harris,<br />

whom Woodcock rages against as being<br />

“unfit” to wear a gown of his. He conspires<br />

with a loyal cohort to invade her bedroom<br />

and literally remove said dress as its wearer<br />

lies in a drunken stupor. This episode was<br />

obviously inspired by the antics of Charles<br />

James, who would actually deprive his clients<br />

of their rightful couture if he felt the fit was<br />

less than perfect, for a myriad of reasons.<br />

Thanks to Harris, this is also one of the<br />

few divertingly funny moments in the film,<br />

which goes the opposite route of Robert<br />

Altman’s silly piffle of a fashion film, Ready-to-<br />

Wear, with a surfeit of awestruck seriousness,<br />

as if it were conceived by Woodcock<br />

himself. Although elegant to look at, with<br />

a very fancy music score by Johnny Greenwood,<br />

there’s a sterility to it, due to the<br />

very limited “tasteful” palette Anderson has<br />

allowed himself—mostly black, muted grays<br />

and blinding white. Woodcock’s designer<br />

creations follow suit, which is fashionista<br />

revisionist history, for the grand couturiers<br />

were all famed for their vivid and flamboyant<br />

sense of color. This is Anderson’s first film<br />

set outside the U.S. and his direction feels<br />

too tight and restrained overall. At over two<br />

hours, not much really happens, apart from<br />

the arrival into Woodcock’s life of that aforementioned<br />

accomplice in theft, Alma (Vicky<br />

Krieps, who does bring some welcome<br />

slyness and surprise), a young immigrant<br />

waitress he meets in a café one night and<br />

becomes fascinated with, to the point where<br />

she moves in and joins his firm. The reactions<br />

to her over the years—for both women are<br />

into Woodcock for the long haul—from the<br />

jealous, possessive spinster Cyril provide the<br />

main drama in the movie.<br />

Given such a parched Anderson script,<br />

even Woodcock’s actual, mentioned homosexuality<br />

only evinces itself in some very<br />

prissy, bitchy remarks—he evidently having<br />

foresworn any obvious gay involvement,<br />

whether physical or romantic. It’s a much too<br />

easy dramatic choice by this heterosexual<br />

director and star, and although Day-Lewis<br />

and the quite wonderful Manville, in what<br />

could be described as the “Mrs. Danvers”<br />

role, score a lot of giggles through their constant<br />

sibling warfare, the film feels severely<br />

underpopulated and repetitive (with too<br />

many shots of Day-Lewis, like a very calm and<br />

purposeful mad scientist in the salon which<br />

is his lab, sketching or measuring laid-out<br />

patterns to be cut in the snowy, immaculate<br />

muslin which is his vital tool). Anderson’s unfamiliarity<br />

with fashion unfortunately reveals<br />

itself in the Woodcock creations provided by<br />

his film’s designer, Mark Bridges, which are<br />

unmemorable, more costume-y than actual<br />

hyper-refined clothing.<br />

—David Noh<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 75<br />

070-082.indd 75<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM


MAGNOLIA PICTURES/Color/2.35/105 Mins./<br />

Not Rated<br />

Cast: Diane Kruger, Denis Moschitto, Johannes Krisch,<br />

Samia Chancrin, Numan Acar, Ulrich Tukur, Rafael<br />

Santana, Hanna Hilsdorf, Ulrich Friedrich Brandhoff.<br />

Written and directed by Fatih Akin.<br />

Co-writer: Hark Bohm.<br />

Produced by Nurhan Sekerci-Porst, Fatih Akin, Herman<br />

Weigel.<br />

Director of photography: Rainer Klausmann.<br />

Production designer: Tamo Kunz.<br />

Editor: Andrew Bird.<br />

Music: Joshua Homme.<br />

Sound supervisor: Kai Storck.<br />

A Magnolia Pictures, Bombero International and Warner<br />

Bros. <strong>Film</strong> Prods. Germany presentation, in coproduction<br />

with Macassar Productions, Pathé, Dorje<br />

<strong>Film</strong> and Corazón International, with the support of<br />

<strong>Film</strong>förderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, German<br />

Federal <strong>Film</strong> Fund, Federal Government Commissioner<br />

for Culture and the Media (BKM), <strong>Film</strong> und Medienstiftung<br />

NRW, German Federal <strong>Film</strong> Board, in cooperation<br />

with CANAL+ and CINÉ+.<br />

In German, Greek and English with English subtitles.<br />

Aftermath of a terrorist attack leaves a<br />

mother searching for answers in a troubling<br />

drama from director Fatih Akin.<br />

The premise couldn’t be timelier. A happy<br />

family, a terrorist bomb, a grieving widow<br />

and mother on her own. Fatih Akin’s In the<br />

Fade doesn’t just spring from news events, it<br />

attacks its story with an intensity that leaves<br />

characters and viewers alike emotionally<br />

stunned.<br />

A methodical filmmaker, director and<br />

co-writer (with Hark Bohm), Akin builds In<br />

the Fade in simple steps. Katja (Diane Kruger)<br />

marries drug dealer Nuri (Numan Acar)<br />

against her family’s wishes. Nuri reforms and<br />

becomes an activist helping Kurdish refugees.<br />

He’s with their son Rocco (Rafael Santana)<br />

when a bomb destroys his office.<br />

Akin uses a documentary style to portray<br />

what follows. The police gather evidence and<br />

question witnesses. They think rival drug<br />

dealers are responsible at first, and for a time<br />

Katja herself is a suspect. Each clue leads to<br />

another, and with plodding thoroughness the<br />

investigators find enough to bring a neo-Nazi<br />

couple to trial.<br />

The courtroom scenes unfold in excruciating<br />

detail, with Katja forced to watch and<br />

listen to medical testimony about what happened<br />

to her husband and son. She is powerless<br />

to stop the defense’s lies and smears. The<br />

German justice system may seem unfamiliar,<br />

but not the tactics lawyers use to twist facts<br />

and malign witnesses.<br />

The verdict sends Katja into an emotional<br />

tailspin that is painful to watch. What she<br />

learns from the trial enables her to seek her<br />

own form of justice. And it’s exactly here that<br />

Akin’s strict realism begins to cloud the story.<br />

Katja’s anger may be justified to viewers,<br />

but how she achieves her revenge in some<br />

ways reduces her to the level of the terrorists<br />

she is fighting. And by showing how terrorists<br />

operate in such meticulous detail, Akin is in<br />

danger of encouraging similar behavior.<br />

Akin is too smart a filmmaker not to realize<br />

the risks he is taking. In the Fade is made with<br />

skill and precision, both on technical terms and<br />

in its performances. Diane Kruger is a marvel,<br />

effortlessly portraying a range of emotions,<br />

never giving in to sentimental touches, never<br />

flinching from her character’s behavior. The<br />

other performers are uniformly excellent.<br />

Akin makes passionate films that address<br />

difficult questions. In the Fade will be an acid<br />

test for his fans and for moviegoers in general.<br />

It’s a film almost no one really wants to see, a<br />

story of cruel, senseless bereavement without<br />

a hint of closure. Yet it deals with some of the<br />

central issues of our time, problems that are<br />

argued daily. Given Kruger’s remarkable performance,<br />

Akin’s determination as a director<br />

and the movie’s excellent production values,<br />

In the Fade is not to be missed, no matter how<br />

difficult its subject matter.<br />

—Daniel Eagan<br />


SONY PICTURES CLASSICS/Color/1.85/107 Mins./<br />

Rated R<br />

Cast: Isabelle Huppert, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Mathieu<br />

Kassovitz, Fantine Harduin, Franz Rogowski, Laura<br />

Verlinden, Aurélia Petit, Toby Jones, Hille Perl, Hassam<br />

Ghancy, Nabiha Akkari, Joud Geistlich.<br />

Written and directed by Michael Haneke.<br />

Produced by Margaret Ménégoz, Stefan Arndt, Veit Heidusck,<br />

Michael Katz.<br />

Director of photography: Christian Berger<br />

Production designer: Olivier Radot.<br />

Editor: Monika Willi.<br />

Costume designer: Catherine Leterrier.<br />

A Les <strong>Film</strong>s du Losange, X <strong>Film</strong>e Creative Pool and Wega<br />

<strong>Film</strong> presentation, in co-production with Arte France<br />

Cinema, France 3 Cinéma, Westdeutscher Rundfunk,<br />

Bayerischer Rundfunk and Arte, with the participation<br />

of Arte France, France Télévisions, Canal Plus, Cine<br />

Plus and ORF <strong>Film</strong>/Fernseh-Abkommen.<br />

In French with English subtitles.<br />

This blistering and timely account of the<br />

privileged classes, relayed with dark humor<br />

and impeccable craft, is a return to form<br />

for the 75-year-old Austrian auteur Michael<br />

Haneke.<br />

In a film by Michael Haneke titled Happy End,<br />

you can of course surrender any idea of a<br />

conventional happy end. Haneke’s bracingly<br />

acid brew about the discontents of a wealthy<br />

French family includes many ingredients familiar<br />

from his oeuvre: surveillance, cold-hearted<br />

murder, the moral bankruptcy of the haute<br />

bourgeoisie, an immigrant underclass shoved<br />

to the margins. Add to this mix his signature<br />

twisted humor, consummate craft and, in a departure,<br />

a series of lo-res Instagram Live-style<br />

videos and some X-rated sexting.<br />

Some viewers will be put off by the film’s<br />

grimness (in Cannes, home to Haneke loyalists,<br />

the response was tepid and peppered with<br />

boos). Others will be hugely entertained by the<br />

steely control of the Austrian maestro as he assembles<br />

this puzzle-like narrative into a scathing<br />

critique of the world’s economic elites.<br />

The film kicks off with a kid’s phone<br />

videos showing a woman at her toilette, spliced<br />

between the opening credits. The videos take a<br />

more sinister turn when the kid films a hamster<br />

overdosing on Mom’s tranquilizers (in what<br />

may be a trial run). By cutting back and forth<br />

to the credits, the opening sequence produces<br />

a Brechtian distancing effect. Unlike in Amour,<br />

Haneke does not ask for empathy for his<br />

characters. What he does require is your unflagging<br />

attention in order to piece together an<br />

enigmatic story that plays like a thriller.<br />

The video-maker of the opening turns out<br />

to be one of Haneke’s more fascinating creations:<br />

13-year-old Eve (Fantine Harduin), with<br />

the pert-nosed, impassive face of either an angel<br />

or a demon. Following her mother’s death<br />

(which she may have nudged along), she comes<br />

to live with her surgeon father, Thomas Laurent<br />

(Mathieu Kassovitz), who has remarried,<br />

in the palatial family residence in Calais. The<br />

joyless, creepy household is presided over by<br />

an infirm patriarch (Jean-Louis Trintignant)<br />

who is bent on offing himself, and Thomas’<br />

sister, Anne Laurent (the matchless Isabelle<br />

Huppert in a role that fits like a second skin),<br />

who runs the family construction empire.<br />

Happy End interweaves several skeins.<br />

The negligence of Anne’s grown son (Franz<br />

Rogowski) triggers a fatal accident on their<br />

construction site, sending the son off the<br />

deep end (capped by his performance of the<br />

Sia song “Chandelier” in a drunken karaoke<br />

session). The patriarch doggedly pursues a<br />

plot against his own life, even approaching<br />

his barber for help. And Thomas conducts a<br />

torrid affair (conveyed in kinky texts on yet<br />

another screen) while his young wife cares for<br />

their infant son.<br />

The glacial heart of the film, though, is<br />

Eve, who is onto her father’s extramarital<br />

fling. In a telling scene, she begs her mystified<br />

dad not to send her away to a “home.” In<br />

fact, she has correctly zeroed in on her own<br />

expendability and the core attitudes of people<br />

who hold nothing dear but themselves. Eve<br />

forms an unsavory alliance with the patriarch<br />

based on a mutual willingness to take a step<br />

too far. (In a reprise of Amour, he confesses<br />

to smothering his wife.) At the blistering<br />

denouement, Anne’s son disrupts her posh<br />

engagement party by bringing an entourage of<br />

immigrants, while she retaliates in a way only<br />

Haneke could have imagined.<br />

Who better than the Austrian maestro to<br />

nail the corruption and bad faith of the onepercenters<br />

(or at least his vision of them?)<br />

And what subject, in the age of Mnuchin,<br />

could be timelier? Of course, Happy End<br />

includes a potshot at their cavalier treatment<br />

of servants: In a party scene, Anne praises her<br />

Arab cook as “a real pearl”—French code for<br />

the ultimate condescension.<br />

In keeping with his view of a surveilled<br />

society, Haneke films several key sequences as<br />

long shots that might appear on security-camera<br />

footage. In a darkly funny traveling shot in<br />

76 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 76<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

front of noisy traffic, his camera follows the<br />

grandfather as he approaches a bunch of kids<br />

in hoodies. (We hear nothing but the roar of<br />

cars, but may assume he’s requesting a killerfor-hire.)<br />

When Anne’s son visits the projects,<br />

where he’s presumably trying to make amends<br />

for the construction accident, the scene is<br />

filmed from such a remove you can only intuit<br />

what triggers the ensuing violence. (It will be<br />

later be used against the worker’s family in the<br />

settlement.)<br />

In American films about family dysfunction,<br />

the usual cause is lack of parental love, sibling<br />

rivalry, etc. etc. In Haneke, it’s the lopsidedness<br />

of the larger world that warps character. Eve<br />

is not so much a bad seed as the logical mutant<br />

produced by her self-absorbed clan, a spawn<br />

of the one-percenters who pushes their values<br />

to a twisted extreme. She barricades herself<br />

behind technology, the better to manipulate<br />

a family who would show her no mercy, she<br />

intuits, when push came to shove.<br />

The confidence Haneke projects as he<br />

maneuvers the scattered mosaics of his tale<br />

into a cohesive whole is nothing short of<br />

thrilling. And when the true “happy end”<br />

circles back to Eve’s final video, it inspires the<br />

darkest sort of laughter. In fact, Haneke’s brilliant<br />

orchestration of his materials is as much<br />

the subject—and triumph—of Happy End as<br />

anything else. To criticism that his vision is<br />

overly gloomy, the filmmaker replies, “I simply<br />

present things the way they are.”<br />

—Erica Abeel<br />


20TH CENTURY FOX/Color/2.35/Dolby Atmos &<br />

DTS:X/106 Mins./Rated PG<br />

Voice Cast: John Cena, Kate McKinnon, Anthony Anderson,<br />

Bobby Cannavale, Raul Esparza, David Tennant, Belita<br />

Moreno, Peyton Manning, Gina Rodriguez, Daveed<br />

Diggs, Gabriel Iglesias, Jeremy Sisto, Boris Kodjoe,<br />

Flula Borg, Sally Phillips, Carlos Saldanha, Juanes,<br />

Jerrod Carmichael.<br />

Directed by Carlos Saldanha.<br />

Screenplay: Robert L. Baird, Tim Federle, Brad Copeland.<br />

Screen story: Ron Burch, David Kidd, Don Rymer, based<br />

on the book by Munro Leaf, Robert Lawson.<br />

Produced by Bruce Anderson, John Davis, Lori Forte, Lisa<br />

Marie Stetler.<br />

Executive producer: Chris Wedge.<br />

Director of photography: Renato Falcao.<br />

Art director: Thomas Cardone.<br />

Editor: Harry Hitner.<br />

Music: John Powell.<br />

A Blue Sky Studios, Davis Entertainment and Twentieth<br />

Century Fox Animation production.<br />

Fox sends in an animated animal act to do<br />

battle with Star Wars for the Christmas trade:<br />

a peace-loving bull who won’t fight—don’t<br />

ask him.<br />

If that Spanish bull named Ferdinand wasn’t<br />

the first to stop and smell the flowers, he is<br />

certainly the most famous, and Ferdinand (the<br />

2017 film) celebrates that fame.<br />

Munro Leaf dashed off this pacifistic<br />

mammal in pencil on six sheets of yellow<br />

legal pad in 40 minutes back in 1936 and gave<br />

it to a friend, Robert Lawson, to illustrate.<br />

That combo created a bestselling children’s<br />

yarn beloved for generations. This version<br />

boasts all the computer-generated bells ’n’<br />

whistles of contemporary animation, weighing<br />

in at 108 minutes—making it the longest<br />

cartoon feature ever produced by Blue Sky<br />

Studios. It has more padding than a matador’s<br />

cummerbund.<br />

Happily, none of this is dull. It’s frenetically<br />

eventful and usually fun—once you forgive<br />

the unnecessary plot tangents and irrelevant<br />

additions. Okay, so there’s the obligatory bullin-a-china-shop<br />

scene, but it’s nevertheless<br />

calamitously entertaining.<br />

The title toro (voice-casted with John<br />

Cena for no apparent reason other than his<br />

beefy persona) comes with a full complement<br />

of cohorts. First and foremost and emphatically<br />

funniest is Kate McKinnon’s Lupe, a calming<br />

goat who is a long way from calm, functioning<br />

primarily like Burgess Meredith to Cena’s<br />

Sylvester Stallone.<br />

Miraculously, the story’s overriding message<br />

is not lost in all the extraneous detours<br />

and par-for-the-cartoon-course silliness:<br />

Ferdinand remains true to himself, smelling<br />

flowers rather than butting heads. And he’s<br />

right to resist the secret, silent agenda of Casa<br />

del Toros, a camp in rural Spain that trains<br />

bulls for Madrid’s arena.<br />

Six screenwriters—Ron Burch, David<br />

Kidd and Don Rymer for screen story; Robert<br />

L. Baird, Tim Federle and Brad Copeland for<br />

screenplay—are credited with refrying Leaf’s<br />

40-minute concoction. As previously noted,<br />

there are a lot of side trips in this movie, but<br />

the beginning and the end are beautifully—<br />

brilliantly—connected by a red carnation. As a<br />

young calf, Ferdinand is bullied when a young<br />

bull crushes a red carnation into the ground;<br />

later, as a fully grown bull about to be sacrificed<br />

to a matador’s blade, he zeroes in on a red<br />

carnation thrown by the crowd and smells it.<br />

—Harry Haun<br />


FILM MOVEMENT/Color/2.35/103 Mins./Not Rated<br />

Cast: Mouna Hawa, Sana Jammelieh, Shaden Kanboura,<br />

Mahmoud Shalaby, Henry Adrawes, Aiman Sohel Daw,<br />

Riahd Sliman, Ahlam Canaan, Ferass Naser, Khawlah<br />

Dipsy, Suhail Hadad, Eyad Sheety, Amir Khuri.<br />

Written and directed by Maysaloun Hamoud.<br />

Produced by Shlomi Elkabetz.<br />

Director of photography: Itay Gross.<br />

Production designer: Hagar Brotman.<br />

Editors: Lev Goldser, Nili Feller.<br />

Costume designer: Li Alembik.<br />

Music: M.G. Saad.<br />

A Deux Beaux Garçons <strong>Film</strong>s and En Compagnie des Lamas<br />

production.<br />

In Hebrew and Arabic with English subtitles.<br />

A propulsive debut from Maysaloun Hamoud.<br />

Girls just wanna have the freedom to have<br />

fun in this electric debut from Arab-Israeli<br />

filmmaker Maysaloun Hamoud. Her In Between<br />

is a political film, critical of Arab culture<br />

and Arab-Israeli relations, but thanks to the<br />

strength of its characterizations it is never a<br />

didactic film. Hamoud proves once again the<br />

potency of a tried-and-true formula: Elucidate<br />

the macro through the personal.<br />

Three Palestinian twenty-something<br />

women are sharing an apartment together<br />

in Tel Aviv. There’s Lalia (Mouna Hawa), the<br />

gorgeous-and-she-knows-it criminal lawyer<br />

who plays just as hard as she works, which is<br />

to an extreme. She is a thick-skinned, cosmopolitan<br />

woman who has yet to abandon her<br />

belief in romance and who is capable of great<br />

tenderness. Lalia has been roommates for<br />

some time with Salma (Sana Jammelieh), a DJ<br />

who is cool to the point of sullenness, who<br />

comes from a Christian family in Galilee, and<br />

who is beginning to explore her feelings for<br />

another woman. At the beginning of the film,<br />

they’re joined by a devout Muslim student<br />

named Nur (Shaden Kanboura), who rents<br />

their third bedroom so she can be closer to<br />

her university. Nur wears a hijab and doesn’t<br />

know what raves are; her fiancée, a man so<br />

unctuously pious one suspects he doth pray<br />

too much, doesn’t like the drinking, smoking,<br />

fornicating ways of her new roommates. But<br />

after a rocky start, Nur bonds with Lalia and<br />

Salma. She resists her fiancée’s attempts to<br />

convince her to move elsewhere. We know<br />

this cannot end easily.<br />

Meanwhile, Lalia and Salma wrestle with<br />

romantic entanglements of their own. The<br />

seemingly liberal Arab man for whom Lalia has<br />

fallen may not be as enlightened as he first appeared,<br />

while Salma must juggle the romantic<br />

freedom she enjoys while living on her own<br />

in Tel Aviv with the unyieldingly traditional<br />

viewpoints of her family. Again, no easy solutions<br />

are in sight.<br />

Without resorting to cumbersome flashbacks<br />

or clunky exposition, we are given a clear<br />

understanding of the life of each protagonist<br />

as we follow her for a time solo. It is the time<br />

taken to explore these women individually that<br />

makes those occasions when they interact together<br />

so impactful. When a moment of shocking<br />

violence occurs, the emotionality of their<br />

reactions is deepened by this understanding of<br />

each in her turn, and continues to reverberate<br />

to the film’s conclusion..<br />

The film’s greatest strength lies in its unwillingness<br />

to go for an easy sense of righteousness.<br />

Yes, these women are asserting themselves; yes,<br />

there are victories gained. But swimming against<br />

the tide and living “freely” is not easy.<br />

In Between ends on a note of ambiguity<br />

over which a less confident filmmaker may have<br />

glossed, or eschewed altogether. But Hamoud,<br />

who, thanks to In Between, has become the target<br />

of the first fatwa to be issued in Palestine since<br />

1948, is nothing if not confident in her choices.<br />

This story of clashing values and women chafing<br />

and pretty young things in-and-out-of-love is<br />

not novel, however of-the-moment it may be<br />

politically. But when filtered through Hamoud’s<br />

sensibility, the result is distinctive, a mix of rock<br />

’n’ roll and sorrow.<br />

—Anna Storm<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 77<br />

070-082.indd 77<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM


UNIVERSAL/Color/1.85/Dolby Digital/93 Mins./<br />

Rated PG-13<br />

Cast: Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany<br />

Snow, Anna Camp, Hana Mae Lee, Ester Dean, John Lithgow,<br />

Elizabeth Banks, John Michael Higgins, Alexis Knapp,<br />

Chrissie Fit, Kelley Jakle, Shelley Regner, Matt Lanter, Guy<br />

Burnet, DJ Khaled, Ruby Rose, Cain Manoli.<br />

Directed by Trish Sie.<br />

Screenplay; Kay Cannon, Mike White.<br />

Produced by Paul Brooks, Max Handelman, Elizabeth Banks.<br />

Executive producers: Jason Moore, Scott Niemeyer, David Nicksay.<br />

Director of photography: Matthew Clark.<br />

Production designer: Toby Corbett.<br />

Editors: Craig Alpert, Colin Patton<br />

Music: Christopher Lennertz.<br />

Costume designer: Salvador Perez.<br />

A Universal Pictures and Gold Circle Entertainment presentation,<br />

in association with Perfect World Pictures, of a<br />

Gold Circle Entertainment/Brown Circle production.<br />

The Bellas become action stars (of sorts) in a<br />

sequel that fails to hit the high notes of the first<br />

movie, but which nonetheless delivers laughs.<br />

This third and seemingly final (you never<br />

can tell) installment in the saga of the Barton<br />

Bellas a cappella group is the flashiest of the<br />

franchise. There are offshore bank accounts<br />

in the Cayman Islands, explosions onboard<br />

yachts and—most shocking of all—instruments<br />

on stage. Bigger is rarely better, of course, and<br />

Pitch Perfect 3 falls short in charm and narrative<br />

coherence of 2012’s Pitch Perfect. Still, writers<br />

Kay Cannon and Mike White are masters of the<br />

one-liner and they do their darnedest to ensure<br />

you know they know that we all know this is<br />

the silliest of stuff. Once again, contemporary<br />

pop songs and jokes about social awkwardness<br />

prove an undoubtedly entertaining combination.<br />

Save for Emily (Hailee Steinfeld), all of the<br />

Bellas whom we have grown to love over the<br />

past five years have graduated from Barton and<br />

are struggling to find their places in the real<br />

world. Just about all of them hate their jobs and<br />

would do anything to relive their college glory<br />

days and perform as an a cappella group once<br />

again. Beca (Anna Kendrick) in particular is disillusioned<br />

by what should have been her dream<br />

job as a music producer.<br />

Luckily, Aubrey’s (Anna Camp) military<br />

father, whose harsh words of advice are a staple<br />

of his daughter’s conversation and neuroses,<br />

can secure the former Bellas a spot on an<br />

international USO tour to entertain the troops.<br />

This wouldn’t be a Pitch Perfect without a competition,<br />

however, as the characters themselves<br />

point out in one of many meta-reflections.<br />

As it turns out, the Bellas will be touring with<br />

real-life hip-hop impresario DJ Khaled and three<br />

other bands. At the end of the tour, Khaled<br />

will choose one group to open for him. Almost<br />

immediately the Bellas are intimidated by the<br />

competition, an all-girl collective named Evermoist<br />

(fronted by Ruby Rose) especially. When<br />

the dodgy father (played by John Lithgow) of<br />

Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) shows up, things really<br />

start to get complicated.<br />

It would be easy to quibble the film to death.<br />

Many new characters are introduced only to<br />

hang about half-formed, including a hunky soldier<br />

who acts as the girls’ escort, the sexy-sneering<br />

ladies of Evermoist, a strange rapper who flirts<br />

with the strangely near-silent Bella, and an attractive<br />

music exec on Khaled’s team who has a<br />

thing for Beca. Evermoist in particular is framed<br />

as a major antagonist only to fall by the wayside<br />

as other, bigger, kookier concerns take over.<br />

Any one of these threads could have made for a<br />

strong subplot in its own right, but all together<br />

they prove a mishmash of bits and gags. But because<br />

this is a comedy, the film gets away with its<br />

scattered elements, though only just. In the end,<br />

it is the Bellas’ story and everyone who is not in<br />

the gang is something of a prop to be used by it.<br />

Smartly, the story has aged with its<br />

characters. The streak of earnestness that runs<br />

through all the films and which was done best<br />

in the first movie with the Benji (Ben Platt of<br />

“Dear Evan Hansen”) and Jesse (Skylar Astin)<br />

characters, both absent here and sorely missed,<br />

focuses on the girls’ bumpy transition into<br />

adulthood. This tale of Millennials being forced<br />

to face adulthood is as timely as the movie’s<br />

soundtrack and its emphasis on sisterhood. But<br />

after turning Fat Amy into an action hero, there<br />

aren’t many more places for the franchise to<br />

go. Heaven forfend a Bad Moms angle should be<br />

taken for any Pitch Perfect 4. Let this be indeed<br />

their final song.<br />

—Anna Storm<br />


TRISTAR/Color/2.35/Dolby Digital/132 Mins./Rated R<br />

Cast: Michelle Williams, Christopher Plummer, Mark<br />

Wahlberg, Romain Duris, Timothy Hutton, Charlie Plummer,<br />

Charlie Shotwell, Andrew Buchan, Marco Leonardi,<br />

Giuseppe Bonifati, Nicholas Vaporidis.<br />

Directed by Ridley Scott.<br />

Screenplay: David Scarpa, based on the book by John<br />

Pearson.<br />

Produced by Dan Friedkin, Bradley Thomas, Quentin Curtis,<br />

Chris Clark, Ridley Scott, Mark Huffam, Kevin J. Walsh.<br />

Director of photography: Dariusz Wolski.<br />

Production designer: Arthur Max.<br />

Editor: Claire Simpson.<br />

Music: Daniel Pemberton.<br />

Costume designer Janty Yates.<br />

A TriStar Pictures and Imperative Entertainment presentation<br />

of a Scott Free and Redrum <strong>Film</strong>s production.<br />

Gripping account of the John Paul Getty<br />

kidnapping in the 1970s opens a window into a<br />

world of unimaginable wealth.<br />

Against all odds, John Paul Getty III survived<br />

a kidnapping that could have crashed and failed<br />

several times. The same can be said of All the<br />

Money in the World, a completed movie that was<br />

a few weeks away from release when one of its<br />

leads was accused of sexual harassment.<br />

Christopher Plummer now plays J. Paul<br />

Getty, described as not only the richest man<br />

in the world, but the richest man in the history<br />

of the world. The revered actor gives a precise,<br />

chilling, damning performance as a 1970s<br />

Citizen Kane, a man besotted by “things” and<br />

incapable of ceding control. He is the frightening<br />

heart and soul of this enormously entertaining<br />

movie.<br />

All the Money opens like a fairytale, with<br />

Dariusz Wolski’s camera floating through a<br />

black-and-white dolce vita vision of Rome. Still a<br />

teenager, John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer)<br />

ambles by a street of friendly, joshing prostitutes<br />

when thugs pull him into the back of a van.<br />

His mother Gail (Michelle Williams) thinks<br />

their ransom demand is a joke at first. She then<br />

turns to Getty, her father-in-law, who refuses to<br />

negotiate with the kidnappers. Instead, he asks<br />

security chief and ex-CIA agent Fletcher Chace<br />

(Mark Wahlberg) to “fix” the problem.<br />

Working from an adroit script by David<br />

Scarpa, director Ridley Scott uses quick flashbacks<br />

to flesh out the family’s background. Despite<br />

Getty’s incredible wealth, his long-estranged<br />

son John Paul Getty II (Andrew Buchan) and wife<br />

Gail live in genteel poverty. Reaching out to his<br />

father ruins Getty II, who dissipates himself with<br />

drugs and alcohol in Morocco.<br />

Divorced, penniless apart from child<br />

support, Gail is assaulted by paparazzi and neglected<br />

by indifferent policemen as she tries to<br />

rescue her son. (All the Money delights in Italy’s<br />

dysfunctions, from its hapless crooks to its inept<br />

gangsters, cops, journalists, drivers, coroners,<br />

etc.) Chace returns from Rome to tell Getty<br />

that Paul’s kidnapping is a hoax.<br />

Only it’s not, which Scott shows in scenes<br />

with Paul and his captors that build breathless<br />

suspense. Cinquanta (Romain Duris), one of<br />

the kidnappers, forms a kind of relationship<br />

with Paul. He and the rest of the world can’t<br />

understand why the Gettys won’t pay.<br />

That very reasonable question the movie<br />

tries to answer by showing exactly what it<br />

meant to be J. Paul Getty. As F. Scott Fitzgerald<br />

wrote, and as Paul echoes in the narration, the<br />

rich are different from you and me. Not just in<br />

what they have, but in how they see themselves.<br />

Getty is self-absorbed to a monstrous<br />

degree, and his behavior, as depicted here, is<br />

jaw-dropping.<br />

Plummer captures the steel underneath<br />

Getty’s jovial surface, his icy greed, his disdain,<br />

his murderous contempt. It’s a beautifully calculated<br />

performance that only occasionally verges<br />

into overkill. The other actors are largely along<br />

for the ride, responding in varying degrees of<br />

disbelief to his behavior. As played by Williams<br />

and Wahlberg, Gail and Chace have backbone,<br />

but are powerless against an overwhelming foe.<br />

Scott’s expertise as a director—his unerring<br />

visual sense, narrative focus, mordant humor,<br />

and ability to fine-tune performances—elevates<br />

All the Money from TV-movie biopic to something<br />

like a Ross Macdonald novel, a generational<br />

saga of evil and decline that increases its<br />

pull as it probes deeper into the murk.<br />

And no matter how publicists spin the<br />

story behind the production, this is one of the<br />

director’s best efforts. Perhaps shooting it first<br />

with Kevin Spacey showed him how to refine<br />

and distill the story, to find a deeper, truer Getty,<br />

to position him as one of the great villains<br />

in cinema. Whatever the cause, this is a film of<br />

hypnotic urgency, a cautionary tale so rich and<br />

smart it will stand up to repeated viewings.<br />

—Daniel Eagan<br />

78 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 78<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

EUROPE<br />

by Andreas Fuchs<br />

FJI Exhibition / Business Editor<br />



As we all make plans for doing/being/<br />

feeling better, let us kick off the first column<br />

of <strong>2018</strong> with one such forward-looking<br />

makeover. Best of all, you can be part of that<br />

enterprise.<br />

CTC (Cinema Technology Committee)<br />

announced a “significant re-launch with a<br />

renewed vision of supporting the global<br />

cinema industry,” the London, Englandbased<br />

organization announced. Previously a<br />

subcommittee of the International Moving<br />

Image Society (www.societyinmotion.com),<br />

CTC has become an independent, not-forprofit<br />

industry network that is “focused on<br />

bringing organizations, professionals and<br />

students together from across the world to<br />

share knowledge and expertise…with the aim<br />

of improving the experience for moviegoers.”<br />

“We believe that there is an inherent<br />

need to bring the entire cinema community<br />

closer together, from filmmakers through<br />

to exhibitors and manufacturers, to address<br />

some of the pressing issues relating to<br />

technology and presentation of content,”<br />

noted Richard Mitchell, president of CTC and<br />

VP, global marketing, at Harkness Screens<br />

(www.harkness-screens.com). This past<br />

summer, Mitchell was tasked with expanding<br />

the committee. (See our July 2017 column.)<br />

In addition to providing guidance and<br />

support to theatre operators “from large<br />

multinationals through to small independent<br />

operators,” CTC facilitates research projects,<br />

white papers, training courses, lectures,<br />

technical handbooks, educational visits, seminars<br />

and networking events, to name a few<br />

(www.cinema-technology.com/our-activities).<br />

“Technology and innovation continue to drive<br />

change not just across the cinema industry but<br />

in the way consumers digest and interact with<br />

content.” Mitchell hopes that the impartial<br />

Andreas Fuchs runs the Vassar Theatre in Vassar, MI.<br />

approach set forth by the group will “enable<br />

the cinema industry to understand the opportunities<br />

new technology can provide,” and<br />

when and how they might be implemented.<br />

Ultimately, he says, CTC is about “what makes<br />

a better future for cinema.”<br />

CTC is looking to establish an advisory<br />

council that can provide “steering and support<br />

on key focus areas and future outputs for<br />

the organization to ensure these are aligned<br />

to the objectives of the industry.” Cinema<br />

industry members from across the globe “who<br />

share the vision of improving the moviegoing<br />

experience” are invited to nominate<br />

themselves at info@cinema-technology.com.<br />

Village Cinemas’ Sphera<br />

Premium Cinema<br />

at The Mall of Athens<br />


Ymagis Group (www.ymagis.com)<br />

announced the launch of EclairGame, their<br />

new esports-based entertainment system<br />

“fully dedicated to gaming in cinemas.” For<br />

Christophe Lacroix, senior VP of Ymagis Group,<br />

this is a growing worldwide phenomenon,<br />

“whether through fighting, strategy or sports<br />

videogames.” Developing EclairGame aligns<br />

perfectly with the company mission “to ensure<br />

that cinemas remain the entertainment venue<br />

of choice, while helping our cinema partners to<br />

diversify their revenue stream.”<br />

The first agreement was signed with Les<br />

Cinémas Gaumont Pathé for France. During<br />

so-called CineSessions, gamers and moviegoers<br />

come together at the Pathé La Villette in Paris<br />

(www.cinemasgaumontpathe.com/cinemas/<br />

cinema-pathe-la-villette) “to enjoy the comfort,<br />

conviviality and interactivity of a cinema auditorium,”<br />

the company writes. “Powered by the<br />

latest, sophisticated digital projection technologies,”<br />

professional and amateur gamers engage<br />

in in championships, “play today’s most popular<br />

videogames and even undertake training sessions<br />

in the comfort of a cinema auditorium.”<br />

Nikos Karanikolas<br />

In another first, CinemaNext, the exhibitor<br />

services specialist in Ymagis Group, and<br />

Village Cinemas launched the Sphera Premium<br />

Cinema (www.spheracinema.com) at The Mall<br />

of Athens, Greece (www.villagecinemas.gr/el/<br />

aithouses/vmax-sphera). “The response from<br />

moviegoers, national press and social media<br />

has been overwhelming,” confirmed George<br />

Christodoulou, chief executive officer of Village<br />

Cinemas. “With Sphera, we keep our company<br />

on the cutting edge of innovation while<br />

maximizing our revenues, with a 50 percent<br />

increase in average ticket price over a sevenweek<br />

span.”<br />

Centered by a 25-meter wide (82 feet)<br />

wall-to-wall screen for 669 custom seats,<br />

the high-contrast 4K projector and Dolby<br />

Atmos sound come with “interactive ambient<br />

lighting” that is fully automated and compatible,<br />

with no specific DCP or programming<br />

required. CinemaNext suggest that it makes<br />

a perfect match “to all alternative content,<br />

pre-shows, youth-oriented features or even<br />

advertising programs.”<br />



After reaching an agreement with the<br />

company shareholders to the tune of CAD<br />

122.7 million (US$95.74 mil., € 84.2 mil.) in<br />

mid-September, Kinepolis Group was able to<br />

officially complete the acquisition of Landmark<br />

Cinemas. On Dec. 7, the Minister of Canadian<br />

Heritage approved the takeover of 44 movie<br />

theatres with 303 screens in Central and<br />

Western Canada. With a market share of<br />

10%, Landmark Cinemas welcomed 10.6<br />

million guests in 2016 to its 55,000 seats.<br />

Back in Europe, where the Group<br />

operates 48 cinemas in seven countries, a<br />

separate set of 125,000 seats has just started<br />

shaking. Just in time for The Last Jedi to invade,<br />

Kinepolis opened its first 4DX auditoriums<br />

in Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium. Also in<br />

December, guests to Kinepolis Madrid, Spain,<br />

will see all five senses tickled in sync with the<br />

onscreen action, followed by the 4DX theatre<br />

in Lomme, France, this <strong>January</strong>.<br />

“Kinepolis has always been a leader<br />

in introducing innovative technology that<br />

intensifies the movie experience,” said<br />

Eddy Duquenne, chief executive officer<br />

of Kinepolis Group. “Cinema is all about<br />

experiencing emotions together and 4DX<br />

continued on page 82<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 79<br />

070-082.indd 79<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

ASIA<br />

by Thomas Schmid<br />

FJI Far East Bureau<br />



China’s State Administration<br />

of Press, Publication, Radio,<br />

<strong>Film</strong> and Television (SAPPRFT)<br />

reported that on Nov. 20, 2017,<br />

the country for the first time<br />

broke the magical box-office<br />

threshold of 50 billion yuan<br />

($7.5 bil.), setting a new record.<br />

The SAPPRFT report said a<br />

total of 1.448 billion tickets had<br />

been sold nationwide up until<br />

that date, corresponding to an<br />

increase of approximately 19<br />

percent year-on-year.<br />

Box-office revenues for<br />

domestic movies reached 26.2<br />

billion yuan, or 52.4 percent of<br />

the total. The remainder of 23.8<br />

billion yuan, or 47.6 percent of<br />

total takings, was pocketed by<br />

foreign films. A total of 78 films<br />

had each earned 100 million<br />

yuan or more, including 39<br />

domestic ones. Among these<br />

local offerings was action thriller<br />

Wolf Warrior 2, which alone<br />

raked in about 5.68 billion yuan<br />

and turned out to be this year’s<br />

fifth-highest-grossing movie<br />

worldwide. Second place went to<br />

the eighth installment of the Fast<br />

and Furious franchise, The Fate of<br />

the Furious, which pocketed 2.67<br />

billion yuan, closely followed at<br />

third place by domestic comedy<br />

Never Say Die, which earned 2.2<br />

billion yuan.<br />

China, which effectively<br />

has become the second-largest<br />

movie market worldwide after<br />

the United States, has seen its<br />

box-office revenues increase<br />

steadily over the past 15 years.<br />

At the turn of the millennium<br />

it accounted for less than one<br />

billion yuan; by 2010 it had<br />

reached 10 billion; in 2013 it<br />

stood at more than 20 billion;<br />

and in 2015 it already exceeded<br />

40 billion yuan.<br />

CineAsia <strong>2018</strong><br />

As the Christmas and New<br />

Year period will see the release<br />

of a slew of high-profile local<br />

and foreign movies—including<br />

domestic action fantasy Legend<br />

of the Demon Cat and the muchawaited<br />

Star Wars: The Last<br />

Jedi—it is expected that this<br />

year’s total box-office earnings<br />

might reach well over 55 billion<br />

yuan by the end of December.<br />

Meanwhile, Miao Xiaotian,<br />

general manager of China <strong>Film</strong><br />

Co-Production Corp, was<br />

quoted in a report released<br />

by China’s official news agency<br />

Xinhua with the prediction<br />

that China would overtake the<br />

United States to become the<br />

world’s largest film market in<br />

about three years.<br />


MOST SCREENS BY 2020<br />

In a related development, a<br />

SAPPRFT official has said that<br />

Now in our 23nd year, CineAsia continues to be the best<br />

and most effective way to network and do business with theatre owners,<br />

managers, buyers, and operators from all over Asia.<br />

At CineAsia, attendees will get the chance to hear about<br />

the current trends and new state-of-the-art technologies<br />

in the motion picture industry. Nowhere else in Asia can you accomplish<br />

as much in a short period of time to sustain, and help grow,<br />

your business in the year to come. Join your cinema exhibition,<br />

distribution, and motion picture industry colleagues to network;<br />

and see product presentations and screenings of major Hollywood<br />

films soon to be released in Asia. Attendees will also get<br />

the opportunity to visit the Trade Show where you will find the latest<br />

equipment, products, and technologies to help make your theatre<br />

a must-attend destination. CineAsia will take place at the Hong Kong<br />

Convention & Exhibition Centre on December 11-13, <strong>2018</strong>.<br />

the country is going to have<br />

over 60,000 cinema screens by<br />

2020, which would make it the<br />

world’s largest film exhibition<br />

market. “By 2020, China will<br />

produce around 800 movies<br />

each year and the annual box<br />

office will reach 70 billion yuan<br />

[$10.6 bil.],” Zhang Hongsen,<br />

deputy director of SAPPRFT,<br />

told attendants at a symposium<br />

in the eastern Chinese city<br />

of Hangzhou on Nov. 26. It’s<br />

also possible that China could<br />

become the world’s new film<br />

production hub, as recent<br />

developments could provide<br />

an incentive for some foreign<br />

studios to choose China as a<br />

production base. Some foreign<br />

films, such as India’s sports<br />

drama Dangal (2016), have taken<br />

in higher box-office takings<br />

in China than in their own<br />

countries, making China an<br />

increasingly attractive market<br />

for foreign film producers,<br />

Zhang told the symposium<br />

participants.<br />


2017 INDONESIAN B.O.<br />

A horror film co-produced<br />

by Indonesian company Rapi<br />

<strong>Film</strong>s and South Korean<br />

outfit CJ Entertainment has<br />

reportedly turned out to be<br />

Indonesia’s top box-office draw<br />

this year. After its release<br />

on Sept. 28, Pengabdi Setan<br />

(Satan’s Slaves) topped the<br />

country’s box-office ratings<br />

for three consecutive weeks,<br />

attracting more than 4.1 million<br />

moviegoers nationwide, a<br />

statement published by CJ<br />

Entertainment said. This would<br />

make Pengabdi Setan Indonesia’s<br />

most popular film of the year in<br />

terms of audience attendance.<br />

The company also claimed the<br />

movie to be Indonesia’s fourth<br />

highest-grossing film of all time.<br />

Pengabdi Setan is a remake<br />

of a 1982 domestic horror<br />

80 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 80<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

y David Pearce<br />

FJI Australia / New Zealand Correspondent<br />


film of the same title. Directed<br />

by Joko Anwar, the movie’s<br />

storyline revolves around a<br />

haunted house in which a girl<br />

and her three brothers live<br />

all by themselves after their<br />

mother dies of a strange illness.<br />

She eventually returns in tow<br />

with evil spirits to pick up her<br />

children and claim one of the<br />

siblings as “the devil’s child.”<br />

Pengabdi Setan was nominated<br />

in 13 categories at this year’s<br />

Festival <strong>Film</strong> Indonesia (FFI)<br />

Citra Awards, of which it won<br />

seven, including Cinematography,<br />

Art Direction, Best<br />

Visual Effects and Best Music.<br />

According to CJ Entertainment,<br />

the rights to the film have been<br />

sold to 45 countries including<br />

Japan, Malaysia and Poland.<br />



International exports of<br />

Korean animation have risen by<br />

more than 30 percent to $100<br />

million this year, reported the<br />

Korea Creative Content Agency<br />

(KOCCA). This remarkable<br />

growth materialized despite<br />

extremely stiff competition from<br />

China, KOCCA said, basing its<br />

findings on the buyer response it<br />

met at various international content<br />

trade shows throughout the<br />

year, where KOCCA operated<br />

Korean booths in support of<br />

approximately 50 Korean animation<br />

enterprises. The agency said<br />

the presence resulted in more<br />

than 300 licensing deals and<br />

co-production projects with 50<br />

different countries. Broadcasters<br />

made up 42 percent of the<br />

deals, while new media platforms<br />

including Netflix grabbed 26<br />

percent. Of all deals signed, 31<br />

percent were made with North<br />

American countries.<br />

For inquiries and feedback,<br />

contact Thomas Schmid at thomas.<br />

schmid@filmjournal.com.<br />

Anyone who thinks that cinemagoing is on the<br />

wane should head to Brisbane in Australia,<br />

just north of the Gold Coast. Three new<br />

cinema complexes with a total of 25 screens have<br />

just opened, and five new complexes are on the<br />

way with another 39 screens, making a total of 64<br />

new screens over about three years. All of this<br />

shows great faith in the industry along with some<br />

new trends. Many of these new cinemas are going<br />

up in areas where large new apartments are being<br />

built, and are even part of the developments.<br />

Dendy just opened a 10-plex in the redevelopment<br />

of the Coorparoo Apartment complex. The independent<br />

Sourris family have opened a new sevenscreen<br />

cinema in a converted building, which<br />

housed the Queensland Irish Association, and have<br />

just lodged a development application to convert<br />

a former skating rink into a five-screen cinema<br />

in the suburb of Paddington. Reading has two<br />

new complexes on the books, the eight-screen<br />

Newmarket cinema opened on Dec. 14 and a new<br />

complex among a series of residential towers at<br />

Woolloongabba due to open 2021-22. The other<br />

three complexes have not announced who will operate<br />

the cinemas, but they include nine screens at<br />

Mount Ommaney Shopping Center, eight screens<br />

at the Ferny Grove apartment redevelopment and<br />

a further eight screens at two eight-story apartments<br />

in Wynnum.<br />

h<br />

Village Cinemas recently changed their name<br />

to Village Entertainment, as they plan more 4DX<br />

screens and launch their virtual-reality arcade<br />

unit, XOVR. In <strong>2018</strong>, Village will open what they<br />

call their first “Full Concept Cinema” in the<br />

Melbourne suburb of Plenty Valley. This will have<br />

a collection of premium cinema-going experiences<br />

including Vjunior, Vpremium, Vmax and Gold<br />

Class, along with what Village says is a collection<br />

of food and beverage options not yet seen in the<br />

Australian cinema market.<br />

h<br />

It not just new cinemas in the news. The<br />

Majestic Theatre in Taihape in New Zealand is<br />

celebrating its 100th anniversary, although its<br />

history is a bit older. The Station Street Theatre<br />

was built in 1912 to show silent films. In <strong>2018</strong>, it<br />

was totally destroyed by fire and was rebuilt as<br />

The Kings Picture Theatre. Then, in 1925, new<br />

owners bought the cinema and it became The<br />

Majestic. By 1981, the theatre was on its last legs,<br />

The Majestic Theatre<br />

in New Zealand<br />

the council took over, sold the equipment and<br />

then sold the building to a demolition company<br />

in 1987. That was when the community decided<br />

it was time to save the building. Over the years<br />

funds were raised, firstly to pay out the demolition<br />

company, then to restore the building and equip it,<br />

and later to install digital equipment. Happily, we<br />

can report that the old cinema is operating well<br />

and looking forward to its centenary this year. The<br />

theatre has a full history of the building on sale at<br />

the cinema.<br />

h<br />

Greg Hughes has resigned as CEO of the local<br />

exhibition/distribution group Dendy/Icon. No replacement<br />

has yet been announced.<br />

h<br />

With director George Miller currently in a<br />

legal tussle with Warner Bros. over Mad Max: Fury<br />

Road monies, it looks like any new Mad Max film<br />

will not be forthcoming anytime soon.<br />

h<br />

UPDATE: Several months ago, we reported<br />

on the new Ned Kelly film The History of the Kelly<br />

Gang, which films in <strong>2018</strong>. Now much of the cast<br />

has been announced, with British actor George<br />

Mackay (Captain Fantastic) to play Kelly, a role<br />

previously filled by Heath Ledger and Mick Jagger,<br />

among others. Russell Crowe is also in the<br />

cast along with Aussie Travis Fimmel (TV series<br />

“Vikings”) returning home for the filming. They<br />

will be joined by Essie Davis (The Babadook) and<br />

Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road).<br />

Send your Australia/New Zealand news to David<br />

Pearce at insidemovies@hotmail.com.<br />

Courtesy www.majestictaihape.co.nz<br />

JANUARY <strong>2018</strong> / FILMJOURNAL.COM 81<br />

070-082.indd 81<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

ADVERTISERS’ INDEX JAN. <strong>2018</strong><br />

Arts Alliance Media. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57<br />

Barco . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2<br />

comScore. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15<br />

C. Cretors & Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19<br />

Dolphin Seating . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71<br />

Eisenberg Sausages. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43<br />

Enpar Audio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33<br />

Entertainment Supply & Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . 31<br />

Franklin Designs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45<br />

GDC Technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37<br />

ICTA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51<br />

Lightspeed Design/DepthQ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82<br />

Moving Image Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5<br />

Omniterm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55, 73<br />

Proctor Companies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37<br />

QSC Audio. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84<br />

Spotlight Cinema Networks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23<br />

St. Jude Children’s Hospital . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22<br />

TK Architects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41<br />

Ushio . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7<br />

VIP Cinema Seating . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27<br />

Will Rogers Foundation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83<br />

FJI Best of 2017<br />

Kevin Lally:<br />

Call Me By Your Name<br />

The Shape of Water<br />

Get Out<br />

Dunkirk<br />

Mudbound<br />

The Florida Project<br />

Okja<br />

A Fantastic Woman<br />

Lady Bird<br />

Their Finest<br />

Rebecca Pahle:<br />

Colossal<br />

Get Out<br />

Professor Marston and the Wonder Women<br />

Blade Runner 2049<br />

Okja<br />

Nocturama<br />

Mudbound<br />

Star Wars: The Last Jedi<br />

Lady Bird<br />

Your Name<br />

Europe continued from page 79<br />

will further increase this.” As of October 2017, Seoul, South Koreabased<br />

CJ 4DPLEX had installed more than 49,000 4DX seats in 405<br />

auditoriums across 49 countries (www.cj4dplex.com).<br />

Passive Polarization<br />

for 3D Digital Cinema<br />

Fast, Bright, Reliable...<br />

Quality you can Trust.<br />

Over 2,500 locations worldwide<br />

www.depthq3d.com<br />

3D<br />

Now Patented in the USA<br />


Moving right along in the multi-sensory movie word, MediaMation<br />

showcased its latest MX4D seating system at CineAsia. Partnering<br />

with Europe’s leading 3D provider, Volfoni, MediaMation’s Dan Jamele<br />

said, “The result is a fully immersive and interactive experience for<br />

the audience.” Thierry Henkinet, chief executive officer of Volfoni,<br />

added, “3D plus 4D equal a perfect combination,” after five years of<br />

working closely together.<br />

Along with Arts Alliance Media, MediaMation (www.MX-4D.com)<br />

and Volfoni (www.volfoni.com) are both members of the Luxin-Rio<br />

Group, a provider of turnkey solutions for entertainment equipment.<br />


For its “Berlinale Classics” program, the 68th Berlin International<br />

<strong>Film</strong> Festival selected the 2K restoration of Ewald André Dupont’s<br />

Das alte Gesetz (The Ancient Law, 1923). Together with a new score by<br />

French composer Philippe Schoeller, this version will have its world<br />

premiere on Feb. 16, <strong>2018</strong> in the Friedrichstadt-Palast (www.palast.<br />

berlin/en/backstage).<br />

The latest restoration drew upon nitrate prints in five different<br />

languages found in Europe and the United States, the archival team at<br />

Deutsche Kinemathek noted. When the original censor’s certificate<br />

was uncovered, containing the text of the long-lost original title cards,<br />

renewed research was initiated worldwide. The result is the first time<br />

that a version corresponding to the 1920s German theatrical release<br />

will be shown, both in its original length, and with the colorization—<br />

as derived from two surviving prints—digitally restored. <br />

Postmaster: Please send address changes to: <strong>Film</strong> <strong>Journal</strong> International, P.O. Box 215, Congers, NY 10920-0215.<br />

Canadian Publication Mail Agreement #41450540. Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: MSI, P.O. Box 2600, Mississauga, On L4T OA8.<br />

82 FILMJOURNAL.COM / JANUARY <strong>2018</strong><br />

070-082.indd 82<br />

12/19/17 3:43 PM

All the<br />

Ins and Outs.<br />

It’s never been easier or more cost-effective to use<br />

Q-SYS throughout an entire cinema complex.<br />

Our new DCIO serves as the audio I/O for each screen in a Q-SYS enabled multiplex. In addition to converting AES3<br />

digital audio from an IMB into Q-LAN (the QSC network distribution technology for Q-SYS), the DCIO also accepts<br />

mic/line signals, automation inputs, and provides outputs for accessibility systems, relays, and a powered output for<br />

a booth monitor speaker. The DCIO-H version also includes HDMI in/out with Dolby Audio (featuring Dolby Digital<br />

Plus and Dolby ® Surround 7.1) and DTS-HD ® decoding for alternate content such as<br />

Blu-ray disc.<br />

The DCIO – along with the new Q-SYS Cinema Cores 110c and 510c, DPA-Q four and eight channel amplifiers, and<br />

DCS loudspeakers – is an economical way to realize all of the benefits of Q-SYS by delivering a full-system approach<br />

that can seriously reduce the cost of your entire cinema complex. A complete Q-SYS cinema solution has never made<br />

more sense.<br />

qsc.com<br />

QSC and the QSC logo are registered trademarks in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Offce and other countries. Dolby is a registered trademark of Dolby Labs. DTS-HD is a trademark of DTS. #23<br />

DCIO full page AD 23 film journal.indd 1<br />

11/28/17 9:59 AM