Disney

Richard Gere and Julia Roberts in "Pretty Woman"

25 Years Later: Imagining the Dark, Depressing ‘Pretty Woman’ That Could Have Been

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Twenty-five years ago this week, a small movie starring a has-been and an unknown crept into theaters and unexpectedly took America by storm. The Cinderella story of a Hollywood prostitute and the tycoon who becomes her knight in shining armor, it made Julia Roberts a star, made Richard Gere a star again, and made $463 million worldwide, contributing to the glut of romantic comedies that would populate 1990s cinema. The movie was originally called $3,000, but you might know it by its second, Disney-imposed title, Pretty Woman. And that moniker wasn’t the only thing that changed between the page and the screen; Pretty Woman has become a legendary example of how a movie can come out of the studio, writing-by-committee system bearing very little resemblance to the script it once… Read More

Lily James in "Cinderella"

Blame Tim Burton: ‘Cinderella,’ ‘Dumbo,’ and How Disney Caught Remake Fever

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The most interesting moment in Kenneth Branagh’s new Disney-owned remake of Cinderella occurs around the halfway mark, when Helena Bonham Carter shows up as the title character’s fairy godmother. Being Helena Bonham Carter, she has to first appear under pounds of hideous makeup, but once I realized who it was, I perked up — because she and the director have a history. They co-starred in his 1994 Frankenstein and reportedly had an affair that broke up Branagh’s marriage to Emma Thompson, and then they were together for like five years, and OMG this is the first time he’s directed her since. How interesting, I thought. Was it awkward on set? Did he cast her, or was she part of the package before he was? Did Ken’s current wife worry? The point is, I had a lot of time to think about the potentially charged atmosphere on set during this stretch of Cinderella. I had a lot of free thinking time during the movie in general, if we’re being honest, because it’s such a rote recitation of a story we’ve heard a thousand times that it’s hard to imagine why on earth they’re telling it to us again.
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playboy1

13 Absurd and Design-Savvy Vintage Employee Handbooks

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Today’s employee manuals just can’t compare to the handbooks of yesterday, with their quaint rules and vintage designs. Corporate rulemakers like Disney and Playboy asked a lot of their employees in order to maintain a strict order and image-focused facade that launched each organization to the top of the pop culture charts. See what the manuals for stewardess, amusement park attendant, and Playboy bunny required in this collection of vintage employee handbooks.
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J.K. Simmons in "Whiplash"/Baymax in "Big Hero 6"

The 6 Best Movies to Buy or Stream This Week: ‘Whiplash,’ ‘Big Hero 6’

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We usually use this space to recommend the week’s five best new releases streaming and on disc, but some weeks that’s just not enough — and this is one of those weeks. Making their debuts are two of last year’s most entertaining flicks, fresh off of big wins on Oscar night; one of 2014’s best documentaries (and a surprising exclusion from that category); and three terrific catalog titles with spiffy new Blu-ray upgrades.
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