October 21, 2016
        Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race        

Dear Hollywood: I Know What You Did Last Summer…and It was Better Than What You Did This Summer!

By Scott Feinberg

hollywoodnews.com: For moviegoers, the summer of 2010 has felt oddly like summers of yesteryear – only worse. Why, you ask?

Because the vast majority of the season’s biggest releases have been sequels that paled in comparison to the earlier installments in their respective franchises. Many people have asked me why so many bad movies have been dumped on us lately, and what, if anything, can be done to change the trend. Here’s my take on the situation, in the format of a Q&A?

People might not even want to be reminded of some of the sequels that have come and gone from theaters this year, but, just to put this discussion into context, can you reel off some of them?
Sure. We’ve had – abbreviating some of their wordy titles and just getting down to the point – ‘Step Up 2’ (Disney, 2/14), ‘Iron Man 2’ (Paramount, 5/7), ‘Sex and the City 2’ (Warner Brothers, 5/27), ‘Twilight 3’ (Summit, 6/30), ‘Shrek 4′(Paramount, 5/21), ‘Cats and Dogs 2’ (7/30), and last but certainly not least, the only one of this lot to actually improve upon the previous installment, ‘Toy Story 3’ (Disney, 6/18).

How can we explain the high – and seemingly growing – number of sequels? Before we know it, we’re going to be on installments five, six, and seven in some of these franchises…
The major movie studios, which used to have to answer only to their studio chiefs, now are each but one relatively small part of giant media conglomerates (i.e. Fox is part of News Corp., Paramount is part of Viacom, Warner Brothers is part of Time Warner, etc.) and have to answer to their shareholders, who expect them to be as profitable as possible. Consequently, a new and original property is considered a bigger gamble than one that has already been tested ? for example, a sequel to a film that recently made money, or a remake of a film that made money long ago, or an adaptation of a hit novel, play, or comic book series, all of which come with built-in fanbases.

* Has the overall economic recession made the problem even worse?
* Is there any reason for hope?
* Talk about that for a second – ‘the awards season.’ What’s that all about?
* Why isn’t the whole year an awards season?
* Is there anything that the Academy could do to that would encourage studios to spread out their quality films throughout the year?

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