The Playlist is all grown up, packing its bags and moving. Starting today, you can get all your movie news and updates at our new home at IndieWIRE.
What to expect? Pretty much the same coverage you know, just on a different channel. We're excited to joining the IndieWIRE team and blogging alongside the venerable likes of Anne Thompson, Peter Bogdanovich, Leonard Maltin and the rest of IW's talented crew. The move will allow The Playlist to reach a wider audience than ever before, get better access and maybe even try a new thing or two. It's the grand experiment of 2010 and a new adventure if you will.
The Playlist has always evolved. We were a music e-zine in 2000, a film soundtracks blog in the mid aughts and we've basically grown into the site you know and semi-love today (and/or gripe about on occasion, that's OK too, we'd be boring if it were simply a love fest now wouldn't we?). Maybe we'll finally turn into a food snob blog one day.
It's an exciting (and nervewracking) time for us, but we couldn't have done it without our faithful readers and we thank you for your support over the years. Onwards and upwards, and don't forget to update your bookmarks, etc. (and tell your friends and grandma). Facebook and Twitter feeds will redirect you in the right way if you get lost and sign up for our new RSS feed. So yeah, don't come to this blogspot URL anymore, we'll only be publishing stories now at our new IndieWIRE home.
The Playlist is all grown up, packing its bags and moving. Starting today, you can get all your movie news and updates at our new home at IndieWIRE.
A distribution deal now freshly inked with Roadside Attractions, Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Biuitful" is ready to enter the Oscar fray with a brand new trailer, putting an emphasis on Cannes Best Actor winner Javier Bardem.
The film follows Uxbal (Bardem) -- who can communicate with the dead, has an uneasy relationship with his bi-polar ex-wife and is juggling a handful of slowly spiraling black market deals -- in his last days as he tries to set things right before he passes away from terminal cancer. Yeah, this is grim, depressing stuff despite the misleading sort of thriller motif the first half of the trailer suggests. While we didn't particularly care for the film at Cannes, other members of the Playlist have seen it and liked it a bit more and everyone can agree that Bardem is solid in the lead, turning in a great performance.
The film will open in limited release on December 29th and expand from there. Official synopsis and trailer after the jump (or watch it in HD at Apple):
Some brand new stills have landed for David Cronenberg's "A Dangerous Method," a film that is quite easily shaping up to be one of our must-sees for 2011.
Based on Christopher Hampton's acclaimed 2002 play "The Talking Cure," the film will center on the relationship between Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and Russian-Jewish patient Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley), who ultimately causes a rift between Jung and mentor Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) but also catalyses strong findings in regards to Jungian psychoanalysis. Vincent Cassel and Sarah Gadon also co-star.
What else can we say about these pics except that they look great, and that Knightley looks particularly fierce here. In case you missed them, you can check out some of other smaller snaps from the film here. No word yet on release dates but with the film now in post-production, it's a fine candidate for the early 2011 festival season and no doubt Sundance, Berlin and Cannes will be wooing the filmmakers to premiere the film. More pics after the jump.
With his legal troubles more or less behind him (though he will forever be plagued by them) Roman Polanski is getting back in the business of making movies and has added one more actor the solid lineup he has assembled for his next film.
John C. Reilly is joining Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster and Christoph Waltz in "God Of Carnage." The film will be an adaptation of the hit play by French writer Yasmina Reza ("Art"), and the New York set story (a location the helmer can't film in, for obvious reasons, and will instead shoot in Paris), follows two sets of middle-class parents who meet for dinner after their children get into a fight at school. Reilly replaces Matt Dillon who was scrubbed from early casting news surrounding the film. Perhaps it's because he needs to make "Armored 2."
No word yet on the couple pairings but it's a formidable set of actors who will be tackling some strong material. Filming will begin in January in Paris and is it too much to expect a late 2011 release? Will Polanski go from legal woe to Oscar glory? [Deadline]
PG-13-ifying adult-centric horror classics doesn't necessarily mean debasing what made the original so great. Given the MPAA's weird post-millennial bloodlust, releasing John Carpenter's original "Halloween" today could probably earn the film a PG-13, provided those damaging bare breasts were concealed. And it's more exciting to consider scares without an explicit focus on blood and gore, so a hypothetical PG-13 remake of something like "Friday the 13th" would sound both incredibly dumb and slightly interesting, given that the restrictive rating might promise a new emphasis on ideas, concepts, and scares that last beyond opening night.
"Hellraiser" is not one of those concepts. Adapted by Clive Barker from his own series of short stories "The Hellbound Heart," the original film saw release in 1987. It dealt with a lead character, unfulfilled by his ritualistic S&M practices, who then finds an ancient puzzle box that tears his soul apart. When a former lover moves into his abandoned house with his brother, he returns to the flesh, desperate for victims to feed upon to regain his humanity. However, a council of leather-clad elders for all things debauched and disturbed, the Cenobites, are aware of this disturbance in the natural order. His suffering, they promise, will become legendary.
Even with his post-"Hangover" buzz leading to the critical disasters "All About Steve" and "Case 39" being unceremoniously dumped into theaters, Bradley Cooper is still riding high.
The "A-Team" star was recently rumored to be the frontrunner for the role of D.C. Comics' adaptation of "The Flash," but Cooper himself seems to be in the denial phase of accepting the role. "I've never heard anything about it ever in my life. It's funny," he was quoted as saying to SuperHeroHype.
Disney Buys Distribution Rights For 'The Avengers' & 'Iron Man 3' From Paramount; 'Iron Man 3' Slated For May 3, 2013
Even though last we heard it was still at least a few years away, Disney is making sure their $4 billion buyout of Marvel starts paying back some of that investment sooner rather than later.
To that end, the studio has purchased the distribution rights for "The Avengers" and "Iron Man 3" from Paramount for a relatively bargain price of $115 million. The money will be owed on the release dates for the films, May 4, 2012 for the former and well, no release date yet for the latter. In fact, this is the first time there has been any release news on an "Iron Man 3" since last we heard it was still a few years away from happening, but now its been scheduled with a May 3, 2013 release date.
The first bonafide awards season controversy (of sorts) has arrived thanks to the MPAA slapping a boneheaded NC-17 rating on the indie drama "Blue Valentine" last week. For many, this once again underscored the inconsistency of the ratings board and its bizarre preference for bloody violence over anything resembling nudity (and strangely enough, "Blue Valentine" doesn't have any violence or nudity). For pretty much everyone who has seen the film (including us) the rating makes absolutely no sense.
Following The Weinstein Company's announcement that they plan to appeal the ruling, director Derek Cianfrance has spoken out about the box office-killing rating his film has received, saying, “we were shocked by it, in all honesty. I think we made a very respectful film. It’s not exploitative. It’s honest, it’s intimate… it leaves a lot to people’s imaginations. And we’re going to fight it. We all respect the MPAA and the work that they do but we think that this decision is wrong.”
Following the public and somewhat salacious news that Angelina Jolie had her filming permits revoked by Bosnian officials it looks like cooler heads have prevailed, and the actress, making her directorial debut, will now be allowed to film in the region.
News broke last week that Jolie would not be allowed to shoot following a controversy that arose around her script which was rumored to feature a romance between a Muslim woman and Serbian man who raped her. Turns out there wasn't even a screenplay attached to the permit as required, and once it was resubmitted, everything was fine.
Last fall, a remake of Iceland's Oscar entry for last year, the thriller "Reykjavik-Rotterdam" by director Baltasar Kormakur, was announced with Mark Wahlberg producing and potentially starring and then....well, nothing. Then, last month Latino Review revealed that Kate Beckinsale had joined the project to take a starring role opposite Wahlberg.
Today, it looks like things are now going full steam forward as Universal has snapped up the film, approved its $30 million budget and turned on the the greenlight. Now titled "Contraband," the film follows a security guard and former smuggler who, facing financial troubles, is roped back into his old life. The logline seems pretty dry, and we haven't seen the original film, but Wahlberg is no slouch when it comes to picking projects so perhaps it's a lot meatier than the one-liner suggests. Aaron Guzikowski, who penned the very hot Black List script "Prisoners," is writing the screenplay.
No word yet on a production start date, but presumably sometime in 2011 once Beckinsale has wrapped up her duties on "Underworld 4." But there will be plenty of Wahlberg in the upcoming months as the most recently released trailer for "The Fighter" indicates that he is a very strong contender for a Best Actor nomination at this year's Oscars.
The first salvo in the 2010 awards season has rung out via the 2010 Gotham Independent Film Awards and so far, Debra Granik's "Winter's Bone" has come out on top leading the pack with three nominations, including, Best Feature, Best Ensemble Performance and Breakthrough Actor for the film's star Jennifer Lawrence.
The Gotham Awards haven't really been a major augur in the Academy Awards, but last year's big winner "The Hurt Locker" (which won Best Picture and Best Ensemble Cast), obviously went on to win the Academy Award for Best Picture.
This bodes well for the very deserving indie picture. Internally some Playlist members have speculated to one another that the film is too small to make much of a mark during the Oscars, but this writer is pretty adamant that it has a shot at a Best Picture nomination. Lawrence, who has since scored a coveted gig in "X-Men: First Class" as the shape-shifter Mystique should hopefully have a shot at Best Actress as well. Call her slot the indie, "Precious" one if you will and let's hope there's room for both it and Lisa Cholodenko's "The Kids Are Alright."
Speaking of, tailing "Winter's Bone" with two nominations is Cholodenko's family drama (nominated for Best Feature and Best Ensemble Performance) and "Tiny Furniture" which scored nods for Best Ensemble Performance and Best Breakthrough Director for filmmaker Lena Dunham. Also nominated for Best Picture is Darren Aronofksy's "Black Swan," Derek Cianfrance's "Blue Valentine," and Matt Reeves' recent horror remake, "Let Me In." Full list of nominations below the jump.
"Safe House" has got all kinds of heat around it. Firstly, the script by David Guggenheim (no, not Davis, the director of "Waiting For Superman") caused a Hollywood bidding war earlier this year, and after Denzel Washington took the lead role, another minor frenzy was caused as every young actor vied for the co-starring gig, with Ryan Reynolds landing the part. And if that wasn't enough, Daniel Espinosa is set to make his Hollywood debut directing the film getting the gig after his sleek drug drama "Snabba Cash" became a sensation at the Berlin Film Festival earlier this year (and is set for a remake starring Zac Efron).
Well, some more top shelf talent is working on the project as Terry George, screenwriter of "Hotel Rwanda" and "In The Name Of The Father" has been tapped to rewrite the script that tells the story of "a young CIA agent (Reynolds) who must transport a dangerous criminal (Denzel Washington) to safety after they are attacked at a safe house."
Production on the Universal film is set to begin in early 2011 once Reynolds wraps the comedy "The Change Up" and presumably before he begins the long press tour of duty for "Green Lantern."
Oh Look, It's Robert Downey Jr. & Jude Law In Old-Timey Clothes: First Pictures From 'Sherlock Holmes 2' Arrive
It must drive studios insane when faraway/blurry photos from highly anticipated films hit the web in advance of official marketing material, but it's hard to keep a lid on set photos these days.
With that in mind here are some, well, faraway/blurry photos of Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law on the set of "Sherlock Holmes 2," now filming in England. As you might expect, the duo are attired befitting the era of the film and, well, that's about it. Oh yeah, there is also a horse carriage, a popular mode of conveyance at the time. Plot details on the film are nil at this time except that Moriarty is the villain this time around.
The film starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Noomi Rapace, Stephen Fry and Jared Harris is being directed by Guy Ritchie and will hit theaters on December 16, 2011. For more photos you can head over to Just Jared.
'Wolverine 2' Likely Going To Shoot In New York To Accommodate Aronofsky, Production Probably To Begin March 2011
Let's be incredibly brief here since this project seems to be a done deal.
As you know, Darren Aronofsky all but officially has the "Wolverine 2" directing gig. We would've never guessed in a million years that this would happen (and we even tried to talk the filmmaker out of it). In a weekend Deadline article that also mentioned updates on "Pride & Prejudice & Zombies," it was reported that Aronofsky is so close to taking on the gig that talks have already turned to where the production will shoot.
Now that we know "The Tree Of Life" will finally hit theaters in 2011, we can start obsessing on the director's next project, the untitled feature that currently is shooting in Oklahoma.
Starring Rachel McAdams, Ben Affleck, Javier Bardem, Rachel Weisz and Olga Kurylenko, plot details are as usual completely under wraps, but during the film's production, numerous pics and video of Malick and his crew shooting the film have made their way online. Now, more pics emerged thanks to local Osage County newspaper The Bigheart Times, along with a couple intriguing bits of info.
Too soon for a career comeback you say?
The oft-quoted Fitzgerald sentiment, "no second acts in American lives" obviously doesn't apply in modern times and certainly not for American-born, Australian-bred Mel Gibson, who looks like he might be entering his third comeback chapter.
According to the New York Post, Gibson's career rehabilitation will begin with a cameo role in Todd Phillips' currently-underway sequel, "The Hangover 2" starring Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, and Bradley Cooper. Gibson will allegedly play a tattoo artist and one we presume the 'Hangover' gang meets in Thailand where most of the picture takes place.
We hate propagating what will surely be debunked as b.s. later in the day, but since it's caught on like wildfire, perhaps you'll appreciate another take on it. Talk of a Bee Gees biopic has been batted around for a few years now. Hell, what musical group worth its salt hasn't had a film biopic proposed about them?
But according to a Daily Mail report, not written by the trustworthy Baz Bamigboye, a biopic is moving forward. "The movie is going to be done by some very important people. It will be our life story. Barry and I will be involved in the technical side," said 60-year-old Bee Gees member Robin Gibb (Maurice Gibb died in 2003 at the age of 58).
The Daily Mail asserts with no uncertainty that Steven Spielberg is going to be that important person, and will be in the director's chair, but we don't buy that for a second. We'll assume the publication did talk to the Bee Gees and were told some things about the potential talent involved, but Spielberg has a myriad of projects on the go and it's doubtful he'd spend his valuable time helming a movie about a British, Beatles wanna-be pop band that became the biggest group in the world by converting to disco.
Maybe he's involved as an executive producer? That's possible. But director? We'll believe it when we see it. At ease.
So this writer has seen maybe four episodes of “The Big Bang Theory” and finds it dumber than a bucket of hair, however, I’m sure they’re all nice people, so we guess we’re happy for Johnny Galecki (he plays the most socially adept of the show's chief nerdlingers) who, according to Deadline, has landed a big screen role in the New Regency sci-fi film that used to be called “Im.Mortal” but isn’t any more.
Galecki, aside from small roles in the likes of “Vanilla Sky” and “Hancock,” is better known for TV work, especially his recurring role as Darlene’s boyfriend on “Roseanne,” and here joins an interesting, previously-reported-on cast including Cillian Murphy, Olivia Wilde, Amanda Seyfried, Justin Timberlake (Galecki will play Timberlake’s best friend), and "Mad Men" star Vincent Kartheiser -
With decidedly lukewarm responses to the trailer, and bad buzz building about the project, Sony have been playing things pretty quietly on "The Green Hornet" front. But with the film's release now only three months away, it looks like the marketing campaign is gearing up again, with the debut of a teaser poster for the film.
It's trying to use the iconic Black Beauty car and an updated version of the symbol, sidelining stars Seth Rogen and Jay Chou, but we're just not sure that either mean anything to anyone these days. But at least Rogen looks like a more convincing action hero from above, we suppose. And is Cameron Diaz actually in this film? We're not sure we've seen more than a couple of frames with her present.
Our man at the New York Comic Con was a little underwhelmed by the footage shown there, but despite that, and the generally lackluster trailers, we're still holding out some hope: any project with a script by Rogen and Evan Goldberg ("Superbad"), and directed by Michel Gondry can't be counted out just yet. The film hits, in glorious Kato-vision (or as you might know it, 3D), on January 14th, 2011. [Empire]
Factoids straight in from the “things we’ll try and care about at some point” section of the internet: “Pirates of the Caribbean 4: On Stranger Tides 3D” will boast, in addition to a horribly cumbersome title, a whole load of CG and Johnny Depp in glorious 3D SwaggerVision, a reprise by Keith Richards in his role as Jack Sparrow’s dad.
This nugget was buried in a Reuters article in Yahoo’s entertainment section, which was actually about Richards’ new autobiography that, from the sounds of it, you’d be advised to spend your time at home reading rather than suffering through “POTC4: OST3D”; in it he apparently details his long and sometimes troubled history with Jagger (aka Your Majesty, Brenda), includes anecdotes about famous types like John Lennon, and generally bars no holds in telling of his, by any standards, pretty exciting life. Sex! Drugs! Possibly even some rock ‘n’ roll! It sounds like a salacious good time, which brings us right back to ‘Pirates 4,’ which doesn’t.
Bill Murray Dons His 'Ghostbusters' Uniform At The Scream Awards; 'Ghostbuster 3' Script Green Lit By Sony?
Look, we realize the last thing in the world this Monday morning needs is another "Ghostbusters 3" story — no one likes beating a dead horse — but things might be slightly looking up.
At the 2010 Scream Awards which took place this weekend and air tomorrow, Tuesday, October 19 at 9p.m. EST, the seemingly implacable Bill Murray relented to his fun side a little and donned his "Ghostbusters" outfit (via Cinemablend) much to the surprise and loud enthusiasm of the audience (Murray accepted the award for the best horror movie “Zombieland” which he had a cameo in). Does this mean Murray's had a change in heart? Mmm, maybe. He did happily reference and spoof "Ghostbusters" in the aforementioned "Zombieland" and that evinced a sense of humor about the franchise, but that didn't preclude him from spitting venom all over the idea of the proposed threequel several times (and he basically did that "Zombieland" cameo as a favor to friend Woody Harrelson). Time will tell and regardless, his part in "Ghostbusters: The New Generation," is said to be extremely small.
McG To Direct '300'-Style Christopher Columbus Film; Halle Berry & Stephen Merchant Join Peter Farrelly's 'Truth Or Dare'
Oh, McG. Our favorite pteromechanophobic vowel-free director hasn't had the easiest time of things since "Terminator: Salvation" landed with a firm thud last summer -- his version of "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea," with Sam Worthington, fell apart, and despite circling a number of projects, including "R.I.P.D," "The Girl Who Conned The Ivy League", "Spring Awakening" and the teen comedy "The D.U.F.F," nothing's quite made it before cameras.
After courting nearly every male actor in town (and to be fair, finally landing two strong leads in the shape of Tom Hardy and Chris Pine) for the action-rom-com "This Means War," which will also star Reese Witherspoon and Chelsea Handler, filming's finally underway on that project in Vancouver, so those of you who've been missing your fix of hollow, idea-free action movies are in luck. And the helmer's not stopping there, as he's in negotations to direct another project, this time with relative newcomers Virgin Produced.
The label, set up by self-publicizing British billionaire Richard Branson as a joint venture with Relativity Media, is making its debut next year with the still-untitled R-rated comedy anthology that stars, among others, Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Elizabeth Banks, Gerard Butler, Kieran Culkin, Richard Gere, Terrence Howard, Julianne Moore, Chloe Moretz, Liev Schreiber and Emma Stone. The McG project, however, is a little more ambitious, it seems; titled "Columbus," it's a new version of the story of Christopher Columbus and the so-called discovery of America.
John Hillcoat No Longer Attached To 'The Revenant' With Christian Bale, Jean-François Richet To Replace?
Will John Hillcoat ever catch a break? Despite previously talking with enthusiasm about "The Revenant," Hillcoat has now reportedly exited the project with French helmer Jean-François Richet in line as a replacement.
Scribe Mark L. Smith originally unveiled Hillcoat as being attached to helm the adaptation of Michael Punke's novel of the same name, which centers on the 1820s story of a frontiersman, Hugh Glass, on a path of vengeance against those who left him for dead after a bear mauling. A feature adaptation had also been developed as a vehicle for Samuel L. Jackson and later had Park Chan-wook attached to helm though neither iterations came to fruition.
Pajiba are now reporting, though, that the project has lost Hillcoat as director for unexplained reasons but has Richet, the director of recent two-part crime epic 'Mesrine' starring Vincent Cassel, as a potential replacement. Richet's last Hollywood venture wasn't exactly a success ("Assault On Precinct 13") but his French crime epic garnered multiple César nominations and wins, along with strong notices from critics on this side of the ocean, no doubt part of the reason why he's being offered a return stateside.
Megan Fox Joins Jennifer Westfeldt's 'Friends With Kids' Starring Jon Hamm, Adam Scott & Kristen Wiig
Megan Fox has secured her first major post-'Transformers' role joining Jennifer Westfeldt's directorial debut, the ensemble comedy, "Friends With Kids."
Starring Adam Scott and Kristen Wiig as well as real-life couple Westfeldt and Jon Hamm, the story reportedly centers on "a pair of thirty-something best friends who observe the toll that having kids has taken on the couples they know and resolve to bypass that stress by having a child and then dating other people."
Scott and Westfeldt will play the lead couple with Hamm and Wiig play another, and Fox will play a girl Scott begins to date -- not exactly the most challenging, typecast-breaking role, though apparently "when [Westfeldt] met with her, she thought Megan was spot on." A third couple is currently being cast, which we guess may involve talent from an early script reading which featured the likes of Rebecca Creskoff, Rosemarie Dewitt, Noah Emmerich and Scott (who ended up being cast).
Shooting was set to begin sometime this month with a theatrical release for April apparently already lined up. Mike Nichols and Jake Kasdan are exec producing and assisting Westfeldt with her first time behind the camera. [THR]
Considering it went before cameras over a year ago, we've been disappointed not to have seen more of Greg Mottola's "Paul;" not because we think they're hiding anything -- it's a terrific script, director and cast -- more because we're so keen to see the film. It did make a brief appearance at Comic Con (and we caught up with some of the cast there), where a trailer was shown, but since then, all's been quiet.
This weekend however, an international teaser trailer debuted in front of "The Social Network" in the UK, and this morning Simon Pegg announced the trailer was going live on the internet at MSN, via his twitter account. And it's shaping up pretty well, we reckon.
Update: Here's the new poster for the film via Yahoo.
After the first somewhat fluffy trailer for David O. Russell's boxing drama "The Fighter," the long-gestating project was looking like a shadow of its former self which, in the past, had attracted a prestige of talent including Darren Aronofsky, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon.
A new sneak peak that debuted last night on AMC during "Mad Men," however, has finally exhibited some of the potential which has seen the film touted as an award season contender. Adding equal parts of thespians Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale and Melissa Leo, the trailer hints at a plot involving a tug of war for Micky Ward's (Wahlberg) attention between his half brother/trainer (Bale), his girlfriend (Amy Adams) and his mother (Leo) which looks every bit a tense, hearty relationship/family drama lying underneath a rag-to-riches sporting tale.
Updated: Bradley Cooper, Scarlett Johannson, Mia Wasikowska Among Names In 'Pride & Prejudice & Zombies' Mix, Mike Newell Or Neil Marshall May Direct
"Pride and Prejudice And Zombies" is back from the undead. Err, it's come back to life? No that doesn't work either....
Though within the span of one week it lost its director (David O. Russell, who left to take on the video-game adaptation, "Drake's Fortune") and its lead actress (Natalie Portman, who will still remain on as a producer), the picture is actually rising from the grave once again.
Deadline is reporting that Bradley Cooper and Scarlett Johansson are names that O. Russell had in mind for the lead roles of Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet before he left and still should be considered the frontrunners. Meanwhile Lionsgate is claiming no cast has been named yet, but "other actors" are in the mix.
Criterion's January Slate Announced: James L. Brooks' 'Broadcast News,' Plus Reissues Of Two Sam Fuller Classics
The Criterion Collection revealed its January slate on Friday and as per usual, it's another solid line-up. While there've been mild complaints that only two new discs were announced, the two reissues are just as exciting if not more so.
Starting off with the new, on January 25th, the speciality DVD company will release James L. Brooks 1987 dramedy classic, "Broadcast News" starring Albert Brooks, William Hurt and Holly Hunter, his second feature-length effort at the time — which he wrote, directed and produced — and still perhaps his most well-regarded film. This writer honestly hasn't seen the film since around the time it was released, so we'll let the synopsis do the talking for us.
It's been a rough year. With the recession ending for some people (not us!), the divisions caused by inane topics like the mosque in downtown Manhattan and the specter of doom hanging over us in the shape of the GOP's return to power, audiences have to feel pummeled by DEADLY SERIOUS ISSUES. What better time for a "Jackass" movie to come along? The opening number reflects the fact that demand probably wasn't that much higher than for previous installments - the 3D surcharge plus the huge Friday numbers that trailed off, suggest as much.
But Viacom and Paramount was very aggressive, almost desperate, in attempts to make this pre-millennial brand name relevant to today's ticket buyers. The ideal success pattern for R-rated sequels is to draw in the teens who couldn't get into the theaters but devoured the original title on DVD, and the "Jackass" movies were obvious big hits with young fans of the zombie factory known as MTV growing up. It makes sense that some of them are 18 and 19 now, and have been declared mature enough by the MPAA to see a man flung skywards from within a Porta-Potty. In 3D.
David Chase's untitled rock 'n' roll coming-of-age tale formerly titled "The Twilight Zones" is now beginning to take shape and gear up for a January production start next year in New York.
After searching far andwide for his leads, Chase has settled with the relatively unknown trio of John Magaro, Will Brill and Jack Huston -- grandson of John and nephew of Danny and Angelica -- who'll presumably play the leading members of a group of suburban New Jersey guys making their way in the '60s as a band called The Twilight Zones.
Early casting calls also revealed the trio to be from very different upbringings: one a high school student of Italian-American descent, one an artistic, intelligent, upper class guitarist and lastly an athletic and unpredictable small town "King Rocker."
Speaking to the French press while promoting "Legend of the Guardians," new "Superman" director Zack Snyder may have spilled the beans on what the plot may entail. If a shaky French translation is to be trusted, we're going to be blessed with yet another origin story.
According to Snyder, "As I have already explained, the film will focus on the early days of Superman, so there will be no links with other films. This is not a remake then. Similarly, although I still cannot talk about the script—I can assure you that this new Superman will not be based on a comic book in particular.” This does defeat the theories that the new film would be based on pre-existing storylines like "Birthright," "All-Star Superman" or "That Peanut Butter Jar From Krypton Shan't Open."
So what does this tell us about the upcoming film? The most significant information has to be the suggestion of "early days," meaning yet another younger Superman, so those Jon Hamm rumors can be put to rest. We can count Brandon Routh out as well, since his version of the character was meant to be the well-traveled version of the first two films in the series. Beyond that? We dread the possibility of an origin story, one of the most tiring tropes this genre has inexplicably embraced. Do we need to know where Indiana Jones found that fedora? Where Charles Foster Kane bought that sled? How Stella originally obtained her groove before losing it, then subsequently retrieving it through the love of Taye Diggs? We do hope it's just iffy translation, and that Snyder's "vision" is able to accommodate a Superman that we haven't seen yet before, and not yet another version of a story everyone knows by heart now.
Update: Martin Freeman Set To Play Bilbo Baggins, James Nesbitt Offered Role And Michael Fassbender & David Tennant Being Pursued For 'The Hobbit'
Update: James Nesbitt has reportedly been offered the role of Bofur, one of three dwarves -- along with Bifur and Bombur -- who join Bilbo Baggins and Thorin Oakenshield on their quest. Oakenshield was, of course, the role being linked to the likes of Australian veteran actor Jack Thompson and Brian Cox.
After months and months of speculation and innuendo, it's taken a mere few hours after being greenlit for word about casting to spill for Peter Jackson's much troubled, long anticipated adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Hobbit."
Deadline are reporting that British television star Martin Freeman ("The Office," "Sherlock") is set to take up the iconic role of Bilbo Baggins with James Nesbitt already offered an unnamed role and Michael Fassbender and David Tennant currently begin pursued. The cast is also expected to see Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis return to their original roles as Gandalf and Gollum.
Freeman has been long linked to the role and, most recently, rued the missed opportunity to take on Baggins due to scheduling conflicts with his BBC modern reimagining of the 'Sherlock Holmes' tale. It seems like those very conflicts are being worked out however, freeing the actor up for the no doubt life changing role.