Saturday, November 30, 2013

Captain America 2: Frank Grillo Talks "Crossbones"

Actor Frank Grillo ("The Grey," "Warrior") plays Brock Rumlow aka the villain Crossbones in the sequel  "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" ...Grillo was asked if there are plans for the transformation to happen to his character in Cap 2 or down the line in further sequels...He tells Crave Online:

"They do, actually. We'll see what happens. We'll see if the fans respond to Brock and how it goes."

Asked to explain further, Grillo would only add: "I can’t say any of that because they will fire me... Marvel's very strict about what you’re allowed to say."

Grillo did say the movie sequel is "an origin film" in which we'll: "meet people who are going to be around for a while, so they introduce the characters."

The story follows the acclaimed comic storyline The Winter Soldier by author Ed Brubaker, who along with artist Steve Epting, in which Captain America's (Chris Evans) sidekick Bucky (Sebastian Stan) is resurrected as a brainwashed super-assassin known as the Winter Solider. The tale also follows that Peggy's (played by Hayley Atwell in Captain America: The First Avenger) niece Sharon (Revenge star Emily VanCamp) meets Cap.

Anthony Mackie is poised to play Harlem crime fighter FalconCobie Smulders will reprise her role of Maria Hill. She joins her boss in The Avengers co-star Samuel L. Jackson and Scarlett Johansson. for the film. Frank Grillo ("The Grey," "Warrior") will play the villain Crossbones in the sequel. Toby Jones, has confirmed to Hey U Guys that he will reprise the role of the villain Armin Zola. Maximiliano Hernández said via Twitter that he will reprise his "Avengers" role of Agent Jasper Sitwell in the sequel. Robert Redford (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) has entered talks for a senior leadership role in S.H.I.E.L.D. UFC Welterweight Champion Georges St-Pierre will play villain Batroc the Leaper, an infamous mercenary in the Cap mythology.

Joe Russo and Anthony Russo are directing the sequel, using a script by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.

The sequel will hit theaters April 4, 2014.

Grillo was also asked about the possibility of his character showing up on "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." TV series: "At this point in my career, it's something that I'm not really interested in doing," he said about an appearance on the television series. "Not that I don't want to do it, but it doesn't get me going anymore to do something like that."

Spidey 2: Chris Cooper Talks Osborn; Triptych Poster

As we already know Chris Cooper will play Norman Osborn in  Marc Webb 's "The Amazing Spider-Man 2--In the comics he eventually becomes Spidey's number one foe--The Green Goblin--The character was played previously by Willem Dafoe

Chatting with MTV, Cooper confirmed that his appearance in this first sequel is really just an introduction for the character--there's something bigger down the road:

"Amazing Spider-Man 2 was an introduction to Norman, and - you'll see - an extremely odd introduction, which apparently will lead to something more."

Cooper was then asked if he knew anything about The Sinister Six and the potential path. He said that he was "vaguely" aware of the direction the film series will take. He added:

"They sent me some material. But they said also that this Spider-Man is its own Spider-Man. We're just kind of starting from the beginning."

Meantime, a Twitter user in Las Vegas has posted up a photo of a triptych poster for the film that boasts the final look of Paul Giamatti  as the villain, the Rhino along with what appears to be the Green Goblin,

Andrew Garfield will return as Peter Parker and Emma Stone is gonna reprise her role as Gwen Stacy. Do these set pics confirm that the classic story The Night Gwen Stacy Died is part of the film? For the record Stone endorsed the idea last August when The Amazing Spider-Man was still in theaters...

Dane DeHaan ("Chronicle") has won the role of Harry Osborn Osborn of course is Peter Parker's best friend and eventual enemy who was played by James Franco previously. Jamie Foxx will be playing bad guy Electro. Felicity Jones (Like Crazy), plays Norman's girlfriend in the film. Former Office star B.J. Novak has an unspecified role in the film. While there was speculation that actress Sarah Gadon ("Cosmopolis," "A Dangerous Method") was going to be the new Mary Jane Watson, given the fact that Shailene Woodley's performance as the character had been cut.  As it turns out though Gadon DOES appear in "Amazing 2" after all as an entirely different character. She is  actually playing an android cop.

Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Jeff Pinkner wrote the script based on a previous draft by James Vanderbilt.

Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach will produce.

The first trailer spins attached to 3-D prints of "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" in theaters on December 13, 2013. An online peek happens this week.

The new film is now in post-production to meet its May 2nd 2014 release date.

Both The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and The Amazing Spider-Man 4 already have release dates--The writers of Amazing 2 are also set to return for the 3rd film

The Kojak Movie: Will Ang Lee Direct?

Late last year rumors emerged that Vin Diesel was going to star in and produce Kojak a big screen version of the TV series from the 70's starring Telly Savalas.

Former James Bond film scribes Neal Purvis & Robert Wade have been hired to pen the script that would see Diesel play the iconic bald cop who has a penchant for lollipops. The original show ran from 1973-78. A poor television redo was launched in 2005 with Ving Rhames in the title role.

Samantha Vincent will also produce the film which will have a contemporary setting.

A fan on Diesel's Facebook page asked him which director he wanted to work with. Diesel replied and essentially confirmed not only his involvement in the film but who may be calling the shots:

"Kojak... New York.... Ang Lee"

This is the first time Lee's name has been mentioned here, and it certainly isn't a confirmation in any way.  If it is true he is an interesting choice.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Christoph Waltz Hovers Around Pirates 5 Bad Guy Role

Although the release of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales--the fifth installment of the series--was delayed by almost a year recently--it seems actor Christoph Waltz ("Inglourious Basterds," "Django Unchained") has some interest in playing the villain 'Captain Brand' in the upcoming sequel  according to The Daily Mail.

"Kon-Tiki" directors Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg are due to call action and are reportedly working on the latest draft of the script after Jeff Nathanson (Men in Black 3) recently did a rewrite of his initial script, but it still needs work.

Ronning and Espen Sandberg said in August that the new film will be a combination of a stand-alone story, and adding to the "overall mythology of the series" (Read not as stand-alone as "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides " but not as mythology heavy as the first two sequels--Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End).

Franchise star Johnny Depp's nefarious do gooder Jack Sparrow will get a new female lead to play off of, a woman who will be accused of witchcraft though is actually a scientist.

The report also includes a brief synopsis:

"Jack and his team are in search of The Trident, which Captain Teague (Keith Richards) holds valuable information to. The villain this time is Captain Brand, a ghost that wants the Trident so he can get his revenge on Jack. Brand believes Jack turned his brother Eric into a pirate, which led to his death. Also, Jack becomes enchanted by Barbosa's (Geoffrey Rush) daughter, Carina Smyth, a woman called a witch by some though she's actually an adept astronomer."

Rebecca Hall is said to be circling to play Carina.

There's also a young man and woman from British farming families who'll take on the Orlando Bloom /Keira Knightley style dynamic, an awkward wedding scene, and the myth of the Bermuda Triangle will factor in somehow.

Jerry Bruckheimer returns to produce the sequel

We will see Pirates 5 sometime during the summer of 2016

"Jurassic World" Timeframe Established

Filmmaker Colin Trevorrow indicates that "Jurassic World" at Universal Pictures is indeed a sequel and NOT a reboot.

Trevorrow says in a tweet:

"Reboot is a strong word. This is a new sci-fi terror adventure set 22 years after the horrific events of Jurassic Park".

Chris Pratt is in early talks to play a rugged ex-military man, who spars with Bryce Dallas Howard's corporate scientist.  Melissa & Joey and The Kings of Summer star Nick Robinson is poised to play the older brother of Ty Simpkins, the 12-year-old actor that befriended Robert Downey Jr. in "Iron Man 3".The boys are in turn Howard’s nephews. Josh Brolin was first in line for Pratt's role but a deal could not be reached.

"New Girl" and "Drinking Buddies" star Jake Johnson also may star. "Pacific Rim" and "Luther" star Idris Elba came up in a casting notice recently. Jason Schwartzman is rumored for a role in the sequel. David Oyelowo is said to had a meeting about the flick as well. There's nothing official just yet though.

Originally slated for June 2014, the sequel was delayed due to further work being need on the super secret script by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes)--not to mention an already too tight schedule. Safety Not Guaranteed director Colin Trevorrow will call action on the feature.

Trevorrow wrote the revised screenplay with Derek Connolly

Steven Spielberg, who directed Jurassic Park and its sequel The Lost World: Jurassic Park, will executive produce here. Jurassic Park III was brought to the screen by Joe Johnston.

Frank Marshall will produce the dino sequel set to hit theaters on June 12, 2015.

Fresh Pics From "Transformers: Age Of Extinction"

Paramount has released 7 high res photos from Michael Bay's "Transformers: Age Of Extinction".

The new film follows a high school student, and daughter (Nicola Peltz) of Mark Wahlberg's character, and her race car driver boyfriend--Jack Reynor--who is expected to be signed for three-picture deal.

Stanley Tucci has joined the cast along with a mysterious young actor who hasn't been identified yet. former Frasier star Kelsey Grammer has been cast as the human bad guy---counter intelligence officer Harold Attinger. British actress Sophia Myles ("Moonlight," "Thunderbirds") will play a scientist in the film Comedian-turned-actor T.J. Miller will play Wahlberg's pal in the movie. "Resident Evil: Retribution" co-star Li Bingbing also stars.  Chinese singer/actor Han Geng co-stars. The 29-year-old is a superstar sensation in both his home country – he has 35 millions followers on his Weibo account – and South Korea, where he began his show-business career as a member of the chart-topping pop group Super Junior. Josh Duhamel recently said that they are trying to ensure an appearance for his military hero character, Major Lennox in the film. Titus Welliver appears as well.

Bay has confirmed that the next film is set four years after the events in Chicago as seen in the third film--Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Ehren Kruger wrote the script for the fourth film. Lorenzo di Bonaventura is producing the film.

Production for Transformers 4 began in June. The sequel hits theaters on June 27th, 2014.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Fogler And Steve-O "Barely" Find Work

Dan Fogler and Steve-O have joined the cast of the action comedy thriller "Barely Lethal" says Deadline.

The story centers on a girl named Megan (Hailee Steinfeld), who is raised at a boarding school that trains young assassins. When she relocates to another town and attends a regular high school, she realizes that the pressures of everyday teenage life is just as hard to deal with.

Sophie Turner will play an undercover agent who also enrolls to help capture the teen. Jessica Alba will play Victoria Knox, a villain who pursues Megan. Singer/actor Toby Sebastian will play Cash Fenton, the lead singer in a local band who becomes a love interest for Steinfeld's character. Dove Cameron Rob Huebel, Finesse Mitchell Rachael Harris and Hunger Games: Catching Fire actor Bruno Gunn also star.

Fogler plays Mr. Drumm, a popular high school teacher who takes a special interest in his students’ lives. Steve-O plays Pedro, a trusty associate of Hardman (Samuel L. Jackson) who’s an interrogator/torturer with an unexpected soft side.

Kyle Newman (Fanboys) is directing from a screenplay by John D'Arco.

Brett Ratner, John Cheng and Sukee Chew will produce the pic.

Production is currently underway in Atlanta

Bernhardt Will Kick Butt In "John Wick"

Daniel Bernhardt ("The Matrix Reloaded") has joined the cast of the thriller "John Wick" says Deadline.

Derek Kolstad wrote the script in which Keanu Reeves stars as a hitman named John Wick who retired from the business after his wife died. When a thief steals his car, killing his late wife's dog in the process, Wick goes after him. One problem, the thief's father is a New York crime boss who puts a contract out on Wick.

Willem Dafoe plays Marcus, a fellow hit man and close friend of Wick who was the on that convinced Wick to give up the assassin business. Marcus is the one who gets the contract to take out Wick.

Bernhardt plays Kirill, a formal Russian military commander and the henchman to the villain Viggo (Michael Nyqvist).

Alfie Allen, Adrianne Palicki Bridget Moynahan and Dean Winters also star

David Leitch and Chad Stahelski are directing the film.

Basil Iwanyk will produce the pic.

Production is underway in the New York area

Do You Believe In "The Bent Bullet"?

When "X-Men: First Class" came out, one of the early rumors about the potential sequel was that it would open with President John F. Kennedy's assassination.

The rumor suggested that while Lee Harvey Oswald was the gunman, Michael Fassbender's Magneto had a hand it. He ultimately was responsible for the famed second bullet - the so-called Magic bullet which caused multiple injuries and defied the laws of physics.

A new viral video and website tying into Bryan Singer's "X-Men: Days of Future Past" called is live and confirms this notion. The site says 1963 was known by mutants as the 'Summer of Hate' in which several of them were assaulted or killed. As a result, Erik Lehnsherr may have plotted against JFK and was photographed at the tragedy.

The clip follows the 50th anniversary of that fateful day that shocked the world.

The latest sequel is based on a -2 issue story arc in the 'X-Men' comics published in 1981. Kinberg (Sherlock Holmes) is on board to pen the screenplay which will include New Mutants. Magneto and his relationship with Charles X. Xavier will be front and center as well.

Singer penned the treatment and produced 'First Class' which was directed by Matthew Vaughn. Now, their roles will be completely reversed for this sequel with Singer helming the film while Vaughn wrote the treatment and will produce with Lauren Shuler Donner and writer Simon Kinberg

Most of “X-Men: First Class” cast will reprise their roles, including James McAvoy (Professor X), Michael Fassbender (Magneto) Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique), and Nicholas Hoult (Beast). Lucas Till (Alex “Havoc” Summers) Rose Byrne (Moira MacTaggert) recently confirmed that she is NOT in this film...

The original trilogy stars Sir Ian McKellen Sir Patrick Stewart and Hugh Jackman are poised to return again as well. Ellen Page (Kitty Pride) and Shawn Ashmore (Iceman) Anna Paquin (Rogue) Halle Berry (Storm). It seems Alan Cumming.(Nightcrawler) will not return. James Marsden has confirmed that he will NOT return as Cyclops,

The teams will join forces to battle the Sentinels--mutant-hunting robots--created by Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage).

Daniel Cudmore is returning as Colossus American Horror Story favorite Evan Peters plays the speedy Quicksilver. BooBoo Stewart is also in the film--character as yet unknown. Chinese actress Fan Bingbing has joined the film--as Blink, a mutant with the power of teleportation. Aussie soap "Home and Away" actor Josh Helman -- once rumored to be playing a young Cyclops -- will portray Bill Stryker. In X2: X-Men United Brian Cox played him and in X-Men Origins: Wolverine Danny Huston took over. French actor Omar Sy plays Bishop and Adan Canto also star.

Post-production on the sequel continues. Additional filming will take place in Montreal before Christmas  "X-Men: Days Of Future Past" hits screens May 23rd 2014.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Johansson Shut Out Of Awards Season Over "Her" Voice

Scarlett Johansson's work for the Spike Jonze sci-fi romance "Her" may be getting a lot of praise but it is still going to have difficulty getting any awards recognition.

The story is set in a near future in which a lonely writer (Joaquin Phoenix) begins to fall in love with the voice of a new operating system he has purchased.

Samantha Morton was previously set to play perform the OS voice and acted out the role on-set. But once Jonze began editing the film he realized he would need a different voice--Johansson stepped in.

THR says that Warner Bros was recently notified by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association that her role has been deemed ineligible for consideration for a Golden Globe nomination.

The studio lodged an appeal regarding the decision, and in any case plans to proceed with its awards campaign for Johansson.

Rooney Mara, Amy Adams and Chris Pratt also star.

Megan Ellison is producing the film.

QT Making Another Western

Making an appearance on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" director Quentin Tarantino announced that his next project will be another western.

"I can't talk that much about it, but I will say one thing. I haven't told anyone about this publicly, but I will say the genre. It's a western. It's not a Django sequel, but it's another Western.I had so much fun doing Django and I love westerns so much, that after I taught myself how to make one, it's like 'OK, now let me make another one now that I know what I'm doing."

Tarantino has previously suggested he was planning a third period film that would re-write history - much in the same way he did with "Inglourious Basterds" and "Django Unchained".

Next "Friday The 13th" Due March 2015

Paramount has scheduled the next film in the Friday the 13th film franchise for a March 13th 2015 release indicated by Exhibitor Relations,

Paramount owned the rights to the franchise throughout the 1980s and for the first eight films in the series. The rights were then sold to New Line Cinema who created the ninth and tenth film along with "Freddy vs. Jason".

Michael Bay's Platinum Dunes rebooted the franchise in 2009 with Warner Bros -owned New Line taking domestic and Paramount taking international rights, but ultimately Warners still owned the franchise. Despite making $91 million worldwide, a sequel to reboot stalled over the tangled rights issues.

Earlier this year, the Mountain got the rights to the franchise back for at least five years as part of a deal which saw them walk away from their commitment to Chris Nolan's "Interstellar".

Damian Shannon and Mark Swift, who wrote the 2009 reboot and "Freddy Vs. Jason", have returned to do the script for the new one, though there's no official word as yet on the casting or storyline--one idea is making the next chapter a found footage movie.

Greengrass Eyed To Helm King's "The Stand"

According to Bad Ass Digest--Paul Greengrass sits at the top of a wish list to direct the film adaptation of Stephen King's "The Stand" after the departure of "Crazy Heart" and "Out Of The Furnace" director Scott Cooper.

Cooper vacated the job over "creative differences," after conning on to re-write "The Invasion" and "Blood Creek" scribe David Kajganich's draft--and direct the project earlier this year after Ben Affleck dropped out. Kajganich has also worked on the screenplay for the long thought of-feature film adaptation of King's It

The novel, first published in 1978 and then revised in 1990, tells a story of good vs. evil after a virus wipes out most of the American population. The survivors end up fighting the Antichrist-like Randall Flagg.

There was that six-hour mini-series adaptation in 1994 while Marvel produced an acclaimed Comic Book adaptation.

Roy Lee will be producing the pic which at one time had David Yates and Steve Kloves, who worked on the Potter series together attached to the project.

Apatow Steers A “Train Wreck”

Judd Apatow is set to direct the comedy “Train Wreck” says Variety.

Plot details are being kept under wraps.

Apatow was originally announced as just a producer but decided to sit in the center seat as well.
Amy Schumer, star of Comedy Central's“Inside Amy Schumer,” is writing the script and will star in the film.

 Apatow will still produce the pic.
Apatow most recently directed “This is 40”.

Holiday Box Office Preview: Will Frozen Put Out The "Fire"?

It's a very crowded Turkey Day this year at the Cineplex--as last weekend's champ The Hunger Games: Catching Fire fights to stay #1 against Disney's latest animated film Frozen (reviews).

It's James Franco VS. Jason Statham in the Sylvester Stallone written action thriller  (reviews);  Spike Lee's remake of Chan-wook Park's 2003 cult classic "Old Boy" (reviews) is out for revenge; Kasi Lemmons brings the musical  (reviews) to the big screen; Brian Percival brings the novel The Book Thief  (reviews) to the big screen; The Nelson Mandela biopic--based upon his autobiography  (reviews) opens Friday

Pamela McClintock of THR:

To say there is something for everyone at the Thanksgiving box office is an understatement as Hollywood once again cooks up a mega feast for moviegoers. The Wednesday-Sunday stretch can see a huge spike in ticket sales as family and friends look for a common activity.

Expected to dominate the holiday are holdover The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Walt Disney Animation Studios' family film Frozen, which begins rolling out nationwide Tuesday night before opening everywhere Wednesday. Frozen is expected to match, or better, the $68.7 million earned by Tangled over Thanksgiving in 2010. The pic should be boosted by stellar reviews and a dearth of family product.

Loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen's classic fairy tale The Snow Queen, Frozen tells the story of a fearless princess (Kristen Bell) who sets off on an epic journey to find her sister, whose icy powers have caused an eternal winter. Last weekend, the 3D pic did big business when opening exclusively at Disney's El Capitan Theater in Hollywood. On Friday, it will be playing in 3,742 locations.

Lionsgate's Catching Fire, opening north of $300 million at the global box office last weekend, is expected to remain at No. 1 with a domestic five-day gross of $80 million or better. For the three-day weekend, the sequel is poised to earn $60 million or more, while Frozen is anticipating earnings in the $50 million range.

The other films braving the long holiday stretch will do much more modest business, hoping to serve as tempting side dishes.

Fox Searchlight's holiday musical Black Nativity, targeting black moviegoers and faith-based consumers, opens in roughly 1,500 theaters Wednesday. Directed by Kasi Lemmons and based loosely on Langston Hughes' play, Black Nativity's ensemble cast is led by Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Tyrese Gibson, Jennifer Hudson and Mary J. Blige.

The film, about a streetwise teen from Baltimore who travels to New York to spend the holidays with his estranged family, hopes to become the latest African-American film to prosper at the box office. Recent successes include Lee Daniels' The Butler, also starring Whitaker. Tracking suggests Black Nativity will gross $10 million for the five-day period.

The action-thriller Homefront, starring Jason Statham, also launching Wednesday in roughly 2,500 locations, is expecting an even more modest debut, in the $8 million to $10 million range. Distributed by Open Road films, the film features Statham as a widowed ex-DEA agent who moves to a small town with his daughter, only to have the decision blow up in his face. James Franco and Winona Ryder also star.

Spike Lee's Oldboy is taking a more measured approach in its debut, rolling out in only 583 theaters. From a script by Mark Protosevich, the remake of the cult South Korean film stars Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen and Sharlto Copley. Looking to attract fanboys and urban audiences, Oldboy marks the final release from Peter Schlessel's FilmDistrict before Schlessel officially takes over as CEO of Focus Features on Jan. 1.

Expanding nationwide on Wednesday is the 20th Century Fox drama The Book Thief, based on the best-selling novel by Markus Zusak about a young girl living with her foster parents in Nazi Germany, and starring Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, Sophie Nelisse and Ben Schnetzer. Fox launched Book Thief in select cities earlier this month in a bid to build word of mouth. The film has earned $1.3 million to date.

Stephen Frears' critically acclaimed Philomena also makes a major push on Wednesday after opening to solid numbers last weekend in New York and Los Angeles. The awards contender, starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan, expands into more than 500 theaters on Wednesday.

Philomena isn't the only Thanksgiving play by The Weinstein Co. as awards season heats up. On Friday, Harvey Weinstein's shop will launch Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom in New York and Los Angeles. The biopic stars Idris Elba as iconic civil rights leader and former South African president Nelson Mandela.

Another awards player hoping to further boost its fortunes over the holiday is holdover Nebraska, from director Alexander Payne and starring Bruce Dern.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Max Martini Protects Grey In "50 Shades" Film

Max Martini, who starred in TV's The Unit and recently appeared in Pacific Rim has been cast to play Jason Taylor in the film adaptation of the erotic E L James book "Fifty Shades of Grey" at Universal Pictures and  Focus Features says Variety.

The sexually-explicit story follows 27-year-old billionaire Christian Grey (British actor Jamie Dornan--who was welcomed by the author) and 22-year-old virgin college student Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson TV's Ben and Kate and The Social Network"), who develop a relationship steeped in bondage, S&M, domination and submission.

Taylor is Christian Grey’s bodyguard.

Dornan won the male lead after the sudden exit of Sons of Anarchy and Pacific Rim star Charlie Hunnam--who seemingly backed out for a number of reasons--causing this production delay

Dornan and Tony Award-nominated actor Billy Magnussen were screen tested at the same time.

The likes of Scott Eastwood ("Texas Chainsaw 3D," "Fury") Alexander Skarsgård  Montreal-born François Arnaud  Theo James Luke Bracey and Christian Cooke had also been attached to take over the coveted role after Hunam's exit.

The news of the initial lead casting led to a strong fan backlash, Several actors were sought for the film and passed. Ryan Gosling  was one such Christian Grey option. Shailene Woodley, Felicity Jones, Alicia Vikander, Imogen Poots and Elizabeth Olsen were all under consideration for Anastasia. All passed due to lack of interest, scheduling conflicts and/or other reasons.

Ian Somerhalder, Matt Bomer, Newcomer Erik Odom and Henry Cavill have also been linked to play Christian. Arrow star Stephen Amell had a meeting about the role.

You'll recall that director Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting) and actor Alex Pettyfer (Magic Mike) shot test scene recounting when the ingenue Anastasia Steele loses her virginity to Grey in Van Sant's bid for the gig.

"True Blood" co-star Luke Grimes will play Elliot, Christian's adopted brother. Elliot is described as a tall, muscular 30-something with curly blond hair and blue eyes. He ends up in a romance with Anastasia's best friend (part has yet to be cast). Jennifer Ehle will play Carla the mother of female lead Anastasia. Victor Rasuk plays aspiring photographer Jose a classmate and friend of Anastasia Steele who wants to be more. He ultimately becomes a rival for her affections with businessman Christian Grey. Newcomer Eloise Mumford will play Kate Kavanagh is Anastasia's best friend and her polar opposite. She is also meant to be drop-dead gorgeous, leaving men panting.

Sam Taylor-Johnson, best known for directing the 2009 film Nowhere Boy and being married to actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson directs the film after a lengthy search.

The novel is the first in a planned trilogy. James has sold 31 million e-book and print copies in English-language markets worldwide, in the U.S. alone she has sold over 20 million copies in e-book and print.

Kelly Marcel wrote the initial adapted screenplay. She previously worked on "Terra Nova" and penned the upcoming "Saving Mr. Banks". Oscar-nominated screenwriter Patrick Marber was tasked with the job of give performing a script rewrite and adding some extra character bits. The Wolverine writer Mark Bomback will do a quick polish of the script

"Moneyball" and "The Social Network" producers Mike De Luca and Dana Brunetti won a bidding war to produce the film version of "Shades"

Originally due out on August 1st 2014 release, it will now open on February 13th 2015, just in time for both the Valentine’s Day weekend and the President’s Day holiday.

Cameras were scheduled to roll on the film adaptation at North Shore Studios in Vancouver on November 5th--Instead things will get going on December 2 2013.

Will And Denzel Set To Work "Uptown Saturday Night"

"Forgetting Sarah Marshall" director Nicholas Stoller is set to rewrite the script for the remake of the 1974 Bill Cosby and Sidney Poitier buddy comedy "Uptown Saturday Night" says Variety. Tim Dowling (Role Models) wrote the initial script draft.

Will Smith and Denzel Washington will star as two friends who sneak out to visit a high-class but illegal club. Trouble soon follows.

Adam McKay is due to direct the pic and wants this to be his next film. Stoller plans to a deliver a draft in the next month. Both stars must be happy with the latest draft or the project won't happen.

 Smith and James Lassiter are producing the update.

If the film does go ahead, production is expected to begin by Summer.

AnnaSophia Robb Part Of "A Conspiracy On Jekyll Island"

The Carrie Diaries star AnnaSophia Robb has joined the thriller "A Conspiracy on Jekyll Island" says Deadline.

In the film Frank Grillo plays an ex-Wall Street employee whom the Secretary of the Treasury calls upon to thwart a cyber attack that threatens to derail the American economy. With the help of his wife (Minnie Driver), he recruits his rag tag team of misfits, and prepares to save the world from total financial implosion.

Robb plays Driver and Grillo's cancer-stricken daughter.

Aram Rappaport's calling action using a script he wrote

Hilary Shor ("The Butler," "The Paperboy") will produce.

 Production is currently underway in Chicago

Milo Ventimiglia Is "Tell"

Milo Ventimiglia and Katee Sackhoff will star in the indie drama "Tell" says Deadline.

The action follows a small-time crook (Ventimiglia) who makes a big score then gets busted and the money is never recovered. Upon his release from prison, Tell is confronted by a greedy ex-wife, the partner he betrayed, his parole officer and two corrupt cops — all looking for their piece of the loot.

Robert Patrick, Jason Lee, Alan Tudyk, Faizon Love and John Michael Higgins also star.

Juan M.R. Luna calls action using his screenplay.

Stan Lee And Avi Arad Working On A Secret Flick

Legendary comic book superhero creator Stan Lee is teaming up with former Marvel studio chief turned Spider-Man film_series producer Avi Arad on a secret movie project says THR.

The two pals are keeping mum on specifics including the potential name for the pic. “Some titles,” Arad tells the trade, “give away too much.”

Arad also says that Lee is still pushing the boundaries even though he turns 91 next month. "At the ripe old age of 90, he can still put together magic. He’s as sharp as a Japanese cooking knife. His mind is as young as it used to be."

Given Arad's close relationship with Sony Pictures the project is being set up at the studio

Monday, November 25, 2013

Star Wars: Abrams Talks Working With "Larry" UK & More

The news that J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan were taking over the script for "Star Wars: Episode VII," took many by surprise especially since Oscar winner Michael Arndt ("Toy Story 3," "Little Miss Sunshine") had been at work on the film from the start.

 During a recent interview with Total Film Abrams spoke very highly about the collaboration:

"Working with Larry has been one of the most surreal joys of my life. We’ve had such a lot of fun working together. He’s an incredible guy and an inspiring and spectacular writer.”

Abrams also addressed his reluctance to film the anticipated sequel in London:

"It's something that I've always intended to do. But I'm torn because I have done everything I can to keep the production of my projects in Los Angeles. Yet the opportunity to work with UK crews is something that has always been a dream of mine.

Of course, that dream existed prior to me being married and having a family, so the reality of making a movie like that for any period of time becomes much more difficult when there are other people that you desperately love and care for are involved."

Casting on the film has been taking place months. Producers were keen to cast three key roles - a 17-18 year old girl, a 19-23 year old charismatic male--and new report from THR suggests that producers are also looking to fill another role: "a 40-something military man a la Matt Damon in Elysium"  One name said to recently have been thrown into the mix is "Chronicle star Alex Russell.

The script is said to include Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo in their later years. No official word yet if Mark Hamill could be tempted to return as Luke Skywalker but he is interested... Carrie Fisher had all but confirmed that she would be back in the role of Princess Leia--but then her rep told CNN that she 'was joking' . At first Harrison Ford was interested...but had since walked that back--Now his deal to appear as Han Solo is not only done but seemingly goes beyond Ep VII

Franchise creator George Lucas told Bloomberg Businessweek that he begun talks with original stars to have them return to for its new films -- before he had even begun the process of the ultimately $2 billion deal between Disney/Lucasfilm. It's been said that Lucas' actually spent about a year planning the franchise's future  before handing the reigns of Lucasfilm over to Disney.

Fellow Original cast mates Billy Dee Williams and Anthony Daniels say that they are keen on returning to that "galaxy far, far, away". Earlier in July actor Ray Park said that he would be interested in playing Darth Maul again as well. Back in May LR said that "The Tudors" and future Dracula TV series star Jonathan Rhys Meyers was having his "name thrown around a lot" in connection with the movie. The actor says the talk is not true. David Oyelowo has seemingly been tagged for a role, while Michael B. Jordan reportedly met with Abrams personally about the film. Sullivan Stapleton and Daniel Day Lewis were hovering around the film as well

It's rumored that Ewan McGregor will return as the Force Ghost of Obi-Wan Kenobi McGregor played the Jedi Master in The Prequel Trilogy while Alec Guinness portrayed the Force Ghost version of Obi-Wan Kenobi in The Original Trilogy. The Force Ghost is much the same way that actor Ian McDiarmid  could return as Emperor Palpatine. The character met his end in the final reel of "Return of the Jedi"...

It was rumored recently that Alex Pettyfer ("Magic Mike," "I Am Number Four) likely auditioned for the role of Luke Skywalker’s son. Rachel Hurd-Wood reportedly went in for an audition to play the daughter of Princess Leia in the sequel. Latino Review claims they "got it confirmed via representation and other solid sources". Noise that Sherlock and "Star Trek Into Darkness" star Benedict Cumberbatch was poised to reunite with JJ were squashed but persit nonetheless. Saoirse Ronan is in there too. She even confirmed to Sky News that she auditioned for the film, but added "so has everyone". Former "Spartacus" star Liam McIntyre has reportedly read for the part of a Jedi role, while Ksenia Solo ("Black Swan") is apparently in contention for the role of Leia and Han Solo's daughter

Zac Efron and Ryan Gosling were rumored to be in the running for the eagerly awaited next film with Gosling in particular is also being talked about for the role of Luke Skywalker's son. Leonardo DiCaprio is said to have passed on an offer to appear. Pretty wild...

One character that is poised  to return is Astro-Droid R2 D2

Kasdan ("The Empire Strikes Back," "Raiders of the Lost Ark") and Simon Kinberg ("Sherlock Holmes," "X-Men: Days of Future Past") have reportedly closed deals to pen the final two installments of the new "Star Wars" trilogy. Kasdan and Kinberg are also indeed developing stand alone/origin  Star Wars features.

The series MVP composer John Williams is set to score Episode VII, Episode VIII and Episode IX.

Kasdan and Kinberg would also join the projects as producers with Kathleen Kennedy.

The film now has a confirmed release date of December 18, 2015. Production is scheduled to begin spring 2014 at Pinewood Studio

Mark Tonderai Charts A "Day Of The Dead" Do-Over

Mark Tonderai ("House At The End Of The Street") is set to direct a remake of George Romero's 1985 zombie classic "Day of the Dead" says Deadline.

Set years after a zombie plague has wiped out most of Earth’s population, a group of scientists and survivors attempt to find a cure - instead unleashing something worse.

The property was remade once before in 2008 with and starred Ving Rhames, Mena Suvari and Nick Cannon.

Tonderai wrote the updated script with Lars Jacobson.

Christa Campbell and Lati Grobman will produce the film

Casting begins soon. Production hopes to take place next Summer.

Patric, Cusack, Others, Bow To "The Prince".

Deadline reports that Jason Patric, John Cusack, rapper 50 cent, Johnathon Schaech, Gia Mantegna and South Korean actor-singer Rain will join the small budget action thriller "The Prince".

In the pic, Patric plays a retired Las Vegas mob enforcer who is forced to return to the city and face his former enemies when his teenage daughter goes missing.

Bruce Willis co-stars as Omar, a man with a score to settle, who has waited years for Patric to return.

Sarik Andreasyan ("American Heist") directs the film using a script by Andre Fabrizio and Jeremy Passmore.

Randall Emmett, George Furla, Ho-Sung Pak, Fred Song, Adam Goldworm and Tim Sullivan are producing the film.

Shooting begins next week in Mobile, Alabama,

Alfonso Cuarón Open To A "Potter" Return

One of the most popular installments in the Harry Potter film series is the third one "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" directed by Gravity's Alfonso Cuarón.

At that time, Cuaron was originally offered to call the shots on  #4 "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire", but ultimately declined. Cuaron didn't come back for any of the sequels...

Now, Cuaron told Vulture that he might be open to returning to the franchise for the upcoming film adaptation inspired by best-selling author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter Hogwarts textbook "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them":

"'Azkaban' was fun to make, and when I did it, I was invited to do the next one, but I didn't want to overstay the welcome, because it was such an experience. But now? Why not? I do have stuff that I want to do [next], but a JK thing... They haven't called me yet! They haven't decided to invite me! Looking forward! At least to see it, because nobody's invited me"

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Box Office Update: The World Is On "Fire"

The sequel The Hunger Games: Catching Fire based on author Suzanne Collins' second book in the series had a massive debut this weekend. In North America, Catching Fire scored the top November opening of all time...After this performance I am sure that the background  noise that Lionsgate and The Hunger Games Film Franchise star Jennifer Lawrence want Collins to pen another novel about Katniss will grow louder. Now it's on to The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1/The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2.

 The Vince Vaughn comedy Delivery Man has a "respectable" debut...

Andrew Stewart of Variety:

Seizing the fourth-highest domestic opening of all time, Lionsgate’s “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” scored a whammo estimated $161.1 million in three-days, with $307.7 million worldwide from 65 territories, making it the 11th largest worldwide debut ever.

“Catching Fire” now has the largest domestic opening in November, as well as the biggest for Lionsgate. The sequel eclipsed its predecessor handily; that film made $146 million opening weekend in March 2011.

Playing second fiddle to “Catching Fire,” Disney-DreamWorks’ Vince Vaughn comedy “Delivery Man” delivered a modest-though-respectable $8.2 million Stateside debut.

“Catching Fire” stands behind “The Avengers,” which holds the all-time domestic opening record with $207 million, followed by “Iron Man 3,” with $174 million, and “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 2″ ($169 million).

The opening of “Catching Fire” is that much more impressive considering most observers expected the film to top out at around $140 million in three days, based on the Friday grosses. The film, however, saw a better-than-normal Friday-to-Saturday uptick (not including the Thursday night previews), up 16%.

When you take a look at the blockbusters released around this time, the ‘Harry Potters’ and ‘Twilights,’ the one thing that is different with this film is our Saturday increase,” said Lionsgate distribution exec David Spitz. “To us, that is a direct illustration of how well the film is playing.”

In limited release, the Weinstein Co. released its Judi Dench weeper, “Philomena,” at four locations, where it averaged a strong $33,429 per screen. The film grossed a total estimated $133,716 domestically through Sunday.

On Wed: It's gonna be a cold Turkey Day this year as Disney's latest animated film Frozen arrives; It's James Franco VS. Jason Statham in the Sylvester Stallone written action thriller ;  Spike Lee's remake of Chan-wook Park's 2003 cult classic "Old Boy" is out for revenge; Kasi Lemmons brings the musical  to the big screen; The Nelson Mandela biopic--based upon his autobiography  opens Friday