'Cloud Atlas' censored in China, plus more movie buzz

"Cloud Atlas," an adaptation of David Mitchell's sprawling novel about lives that reverberate across the ages, stars Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Sturgess, Susan Sarandon and Hugh Grant. Photo Credit: Warner Bros.

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THE MOVIE "Cloud Atlas"

THE DEAL Chinese censors have hacked nearly 40 minutes out of the sprawling Warner Bros. epic. Some expository sequences and "passionate love scenes" reportedly will be missing, though it's unclear whether that refers to the same-sex affairs of Ben Whishaw's character, the rape of Zhou Xun's character or other segments that might have offended China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television. Censors also recently tinkered with the James Bond film "Skyfall," removing the killing of a Chinese doorman and obscuring references to Chinese intelligence services doling out torture. "Cloud Atlas" opens in China Jan. 31.

 

WHO Sam Rockwell

THE MOVIE "The Way, Way Back"

THE DEAL Fox Searchlight paid $10 million to snap up this comedy at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this week, Entertainment Weekly reports. Written by Oscar winners Nat Faxon and Jim Rash ("The Descendants"), the film stars Toni Collette as the mother of an awkward teen (Liam James) and Steve Carell as her obnoxious boyfriend; Rockwell has been drawing early praise for his performance as Owen, a gonzo water-park manager who becomes the boy's mentor. The film, which reportedly received a standing ovation at a Monday screening, could mark "just about the richest deal ever made at the festival," according to Deadline.com. Allison Janney, Maya Rudolph, Rob Corddry and AnnaSophia Robb ("The Carrie Diaries") also star.

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THE MOVIE "Koch"

THE DEAL Neil Barsky's documentary includes several interviews with Ed Koch, the polarizing, three-term New York City mayor remembered as much for his populist leadership during the 1980 transit strike as for the patronage appointments that tarnished his final years in office. (Koch, 88, was hospitalized over the weekend with swollen lungs and ankles.) The film is due for release Feb.1 in Manhattan, but the Furman Film Series is holding a sneak-preview screening in Great Neck. Producer Jenny Carchman and editor Juliet Weber will appear in person.

INFO Thursday night at 7:30 at Squire Cinemas, 115 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck. Tickets are $15-$20. 516-829-2570; goldcoastfilmfestival.org.

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