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Posts Tagged ‘Todd McCarthy’

THR Snags a Couple of Variety Film Reviewers

No, we’re not talking about Justin Chang and Peter Debruge. That would be huge and… somewhat nonsensical.

Still, for Hollywood trade watchers, the defection from Variety to The Hollywood Reporter of international freelance reviewers Jonathan Holland (based in Madrid) and Boyd van Hoiej (Paris, Luxembourg) would seem to suggest that there’s concern on their part about the future of their beat. A rep for THR tells us that van Hoiej is already at Cannes, and that both will immediately start contributing to the efforts crowned of course by another Variety alum, Todd McCarthy.

Holland, who focuses mainly on Spanish and Latin American films, has also written for The Guardian and Conde Nast’s Traveller. He separately penned the 1994 novel The Escape Artist.

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Scott Foundas Lands at Variety

How’s this for a dotting of the “i” and crossing of the “t” with regards to Variety’s official transition into the PMC era? In between the Sunday preparation for and Tuesday arrival of Daily Variety‘s final print edition, the trade has announced the hiring of a new chief film critic.

The credentials of Scott Foundas, a native of Tampa, FL and graduate of USC, are long, diverse and impressive. As a result, Twitter congratulations are quickly pouring in. From this afternoon’s announcement:

The renowned writer was most recently the chief film critic for the Village Voice, where his reviews, essays and interviews appeared regularly in all 11 Voice Media Group publications. Foundas will remain based in Gotham and work closely with senior film critics Justin Chang and Peter Debruge on reviews and other commentary and reporting for all Variety platforms.

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Todd McCarthy Uncorks the Mother of All Rhetorical Questions

We agree with Variety film editor Josh Dickey. The opening sentence of THR critic Todd McCarthy’s review of the Warner Bros. fantasy film Jack the Giant Slayer is one for the ages:

When will all the dead-serious $200 million battle-centered giant-infested similarly cast rousingly scored fabulously rendered 3D fairy-tale reimaginings all finally merge together into one enormous Anglophilic fantasmagoria of monarchical order and virtue so we can all be done with this for the time being?

We’re talking: 44 glorious words, four of them hyphenated; a French-leaning spelling of phantasmagoria (for le extra oomph?); and an audacious disregard of the comma. In this brief moment, McCarthy has recast himself as Todd the Run-On Sentence Slayer. Bravo.

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Thanks to Drudge N-Word Headline, THR Wednesday Web Traffic Was Off the Chain

The “D” in Drudge Report was anything but silent this past Wednesday for The Hollywood Reporter. As Max Read on Gawker, Derek Thompson of The Atlantic and other media watchers noted, Drudge went crazy with a 40-point, multiple N-word headline pointing to Todd McCarthy‘s Django Unchained review.

Having here at FishbowlLA had a brush or two with the dynamite known as a Drudge mention, we were curious how much traffic – exactly - the item in question received December 12. A spokesperson for THR tells us McCarthy’s Django review registered an astounding 1,000,137 page views.

Drudge often links to McCarthy THR critiques, and not every one of those Wednesday clicks came from his site. But for McCarthy to cross the single-day one million mark a day before being co-opted for an Onion item about The Hobbit, well that’s too cool even for Quentin Tarantino school.

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Hooray for Two Very Different Hollywoods

By sheer coincidence, The Hollywood Reporter has a hand in a pair of diametrically opposed celebrations of Tinseltown this week. All within the space of a few miles and 24 hours.

Last night at Falcon Hollywood, the publication toasted its Next Gen 2012 issue and roster of 35 up-and-coming young agents, managers, TV-film execs, publicists, writer-directors and actors. FishbowlLA dropped by for a cocktail and the best way to describe the scene is that it looked, felt and sounded like a shoot for the Entourage movie. Complete with Janice Min cameo and sexy product placement (the evening’s sponsors were A&E and Samsung Galaxy SIII).

Tonight, THR film critic Todd McCarthy will dial things down at the American Cinematheque via a Q&A with 98-year-old Norman Lloyd (pictured). Today is Lloyd’s birthday and 2012 marks his 80th year in show business (he started working on Broadway in September 1932).

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Hollywood Trades, Meet Your Brand New Watchdog

The operator of the cheeky new Blogspot page Trade Fools wishes to remain “anonymous on all fronts.” Which is fine by us. It worked for Mark Lisanti during the earliest days of defamer.com and doesn’t seem to have hurt the media profile of that Crazy Days and Nights dude either.

The site is a solid work-in-progress. For example, items like today’s “Whitney Houston Reality Crap: Who Had It First?” need to do more than simply note which mouth of the four-headed beast was quickest to the content buffet.

On the other hand, the poll question on the right-hand margin is pretty funny and a May 9 item shared some good info about Deadline contributor Don Groves. All told, Trade Fools is a welcome addition to the Hollywood-centric blogosphere.

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Credits Roll on Venerable THR Critic Kirk Honeycutt

When Kirk Honeycutt joined the Hollywood Reporter in 1992, his name was attached as screenwriter to the Roger Corman made-for-video thriller Final Judgement (sic). Brad Dourif plays a preacher investigating the murder of his estranged daughter and other strippers, alongside the estimable talents of Karen Black, Isaac Hayes and Orson Bean.

The glory days of low-budget VHS studio production are long gone, as are rock-solid film critic positions like the one Honeycutt was lucky enough to occupy from 1999 through the fall of last year. As first reported by Anne Thompson, the former chief film critic of the revamped Hollywood trade has been given his walking papers. His last day will be next Monday, following a stint as a THR juror at the Napa Valley Film Festival.

Ironically, Honeycutt’s switch to international critic and now layoff was brought about by the arrival of Todd McCarthy, Variety lead critic until a spring 2010 firing. These are different times on Wilshire Blvd., buffeted by the fact that the trades no longer have a monopoly on setting the buzz for major releases with those once vaunted first-look reviews.

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AP Reporter Recalls His Busboy Days with Elizabeth Taylor

In the wake of Elizabeth Taylor‘s death, reporters who crossed paths with her away from the movie set have been sharing their experiences. Hollywood Reporter film critic Todd McCarthy once bumped into the actress in the foyer of Chasen’s, for example.

But the best such recollection so far comes from Southern California AP reporter Jeff Wilson (pictured). When he was a teenager, he worked as a busboy at the now razed Mexican restaurant the El Chiquito Inn, which was right across the street from Warner Bros. in Burbank. During the filming of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, he served Taylor and husband, co-star Richard Burton many times:

I was awestruck. Those violet eyes took my breath away. And that cleavage, well, it (they?) meant a lot to a 16-year-old high school kid… She was a jaw-dropping beauty like no one else.

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Assessing the New Hollywood Reporter

OK, we finally got our hands on a copy of the new and improved Hollywood Reporter. First thought: wow, this thing is thick. 152 pages thick, filled with glossy fashion ads. Nice.

That said, our initial thoughts about the cover have stuck with us: that’s an awful lot of white women. Said cover is a rather dull shot of pasty Oscar hopefuls Amy Adams, Nicole Kidman, Helena Bonham Carter, Annette Bening, Hilary Swank and Natalie Portman. When we wrote about the lily white cover earlier this week, a rep from THR wrote us to say she agreed, and that THR had covered the issue of how this could be the whitest Oscars in 10 years–no minorities are expected to be nominated in any of the major categories.

True, but that doesn’t mean you have to go along with it. It’s your cover.

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The Variety Show Continues at THR

As one former Variety staffer joins the morphing Hollywood Reporter, so leaves another: it was announced today by THR that editor Elizabeth Guider is departing the trade publication for personal reasons. Hopefully, on her way out the revolving door, Guider will have the chance to say hi-bye to new incoming chief film critic Todd McCarthy.

Via brief, boiler plate item on its website this morning, THR indicates that Guider “will continue to contribute” in a way that is more commensurate with her book writing efforts and trips to visit out-of-state relatives. Whether that means angry letters to the (new) editor about her severance package or something else at this point remains unclear.

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