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January 9, 2006

Universal Pictures to offer free sneak preview of alumna’s new film at UCSC on January 15

By Scott Rappaport

The UCSC Alumni Association will present a free sneak preview of Universal Pictures' new family movie, Nanny McPhee, starring Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, and Angela Lansbury on Sunday, January 15, at 2 p.m. in the UCSC Media Theater.

Photo: Scene from Nanny McPhee

Colin Firth plays Mr. Brown, shown with daughters Lily (Jennifer Rae Daykin), Cristiana (Holly Gibbs), and Tora (Eliza Bennett), above. Below, producer and UCSC alumna Lindsay Doran, left, is with Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thompson, who plays Nanny McPhee.
Photos: Liam Daniel

Photo: Lindsay Doran and Emma Thompson

The public is invited to attend but space is limited, and attendees are advised to R.S.V.P. by calling (831) 459-2530.

The screening has been made possible by the film's producer, Lindsay Doran, who graduated from UCSC in 1970 with a B.A. in creative media. The film will open in theaters nationwide on January 27.

Nanny McPhee is a dark and witty fable in which Thompson portrays a person of unsettling appearance and magical powers. She enters the household of the recently widowed Mr. Brown (Firth) and attempts to tame his seven exceedingly ill-behaved children. The children, led by the oldest boy Simon (Love Actually's Thomas Sangster), have managed to drive away 17 previous nannies and are certain that they will have no trouble with this one. But as Nanny McPhee takes control, they begin to notice that their vile behavior now leads swiftly and magically to rather startling consequences.

The film marks producer Doran’s third collaboration with Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thompson during a Hollywood career that has now spanned more than two decades. After graduating from UCSC in 1970, Doran lived in England before moving to Los Angeles in 1979. As vice president of creative affairs at Embassy Pictures, she served as the executive in charge of production on two films directed by Rob Reiner—This is Spinal Tap (her first film credit) and The Sure Thing.

Doran joined Paramount Pictures in 1985, where she oversaw the development and production of such films as Pretty in Pink; Ferris Bueller’s Day Off; Planes, Trains & Automobiles; The Naked Gun; Pet Sematary; and Ghost. She left Paramount in 1989 to join Sydney Pollack’s Mirage Enterprises, where she produced Sense and Sensibility, written by Thompson and directed by Ang Lee.

Sense and Sensibility won the Golden Globe award for Best Picture and an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay by Thompson. It was also nominated for six other Academy Awards, including Best Picture and received the Best Film award given by the British Academy of Film and Theater Arts (BAFTA). While at Mirage, Doran additionally served as executive producer on The Firm and Sabrina, both directed by Sydney Pollack.

In 1996, Doran became president and CEO of United Artists Pictures, where she presided over production of the James Bond movies Tomorrow Never Dies and The World Is Not Enough. She also oversaw the Man in the Iron Mask and Ronin, as well as the remake of the Thomas Crown Affair.

Doran left United Artists in 1999 and resumed her career as a producer. She is currently the president of Three Strange Angels Inc., a motion picture production company based at Sony Pictures.

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