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Second City Launches the Harold Ramis Film School

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Comedy brand name The Second City has announced what it’s billing as the world’s first film school dedicated to comedy, which they’ve named the Harold Ramis Film School. Second City alumnus Ramis is most known for his roles in “Ghostbusters” and “Stripes,” directing “Caddyshack” and writing the screenplay for “Animal House” and “Groundhog Day.” Second City’s new Chicago-based… Read more »

Steven Spielberg’s ‘Ready Player One’ Pushed Back to Avoid ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’

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Not even Steven Spielberg can withstand the force of Star Wars. “Ready Player One,” the director’s adaptation of Ernest Cline’s best-selling fantasy novel, will move to March 30, 2018, which allows the film to steer clear of “Star Wars: Episode VIII.” Last month, Disney announced it was shifting the Star Wars sequel from May 2017… Read more »

SXSW Unveils Midnighters, Festival Favorites Programs

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The South by Southwest Film Festival has unveiled the remainder of its program with films starring Ashley Bell and Rory Culkin and documentaries about Richard Linklater and Robert Klein. SXSW announced Tuesday its Midnighters, Festival Favorites, Shorts Programs and Special Events for its 23rd edition, running March 11-19, 2016 in Austin, Texas. The festival opens with… Read more »

BitTorrent Launches First P2P Live Streaming App on Apple TV

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BitTorrent Inc. just released a new video streaming app called OTT News for Apple TV that promises live video coverage of the New Hampshire Primary with a team of journalists hired by the company for this very occasion. But the bigger story isn’t about Trump or Bernie, for once: OTT News uses peer-to-peer technology, instead of… Read more »

U.K.’s Channel 4 Boosts Funding for Film4 by $14.5 million

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BERLIN — British broadcaster Channel 4 has increased funding to its film production arm, Film4, from £15 million ($21.7 million) to £25 million ($36.1 million) in 2016 — with the ambition of maintaining similar increased levels of Film4 funding in future years. In addition, Film4 has inked a co-financing deal with Fox Searchlight for Martin… Read more »

The Individualists: Tim Robbins Lives His Dream on World Stage

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“Dead Man Walking” premiered 20 years ago at the Berlin Film Festival, and went on to win four awards there, including the Silver Bear for Sean Penn’s performance a murderer on Death Row. This month the film’s writer-director, Tim Robbins, returns to Berlin, where he will receive the Berlinale Camera Award, as the festival hosts… Read more »

Amazon Reveals Game Engine With Native Twitch Support

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Amazon is evidently getting more serious about gaming, following an announcement of a free, cross-platform 3D game engine called Amazon Lumberyard. The new engine launched a beta today for console and PC developers, with plans to add mobile and virtual reality support later. Lumberyard includes “hundreds” of the elements that developers need when creating a… Read more »

Cuba Gooding Jr. on ‘People v. O.J. Simpson’: ‘I’m Not Here to Prove His Innocence or Guilt’

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Of all the cast members in “The People v. O.J. Simpson,” Cuba Gooding, Jr. may have the toughest challenge: He has to embody someone everyone has an opinion on. But guilty or innocent, Gooding says he’ll never reveal his true feelings about the case — or the former Heisman trophy winner, who’s now in prison on… Read more »

Keira Knightley Joins Will Smith in ‘Collateral Beauty’

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Keira Knightley has joined the cast of New Line’s ensemble drama “Collateral Beauty” starring Will Smith. David Frankel will direct the film, which is being co-financed by Village Roadshow. Smith is starring alongside Helen Mirren, Edward Norton, Naomie Harris and Michael Pena. Producers are Anthony Bregman, Bard Dorros, Allan Loeb, Michael Sugar and PalmStar CEO… Read more »