Star on the Rise: Why Michael B. Jordan Should Be on Your Radar

by     Posted 4 days ago

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There are a number of promising young actors raising their profiles at the moment, but one of the most exciting of the bunch is Michael B. Jordan.  You may remember him breaking your heart during Season One of The Wire or making you swoon with his recurring appearance on NBC’s Parenthood, but he broke out in a big way with last year’s gut-wrenching drama Fruitvale Station, garnering him dramatic clout and even awards consideration.  His most high-profile role is yet to come, as he plays the Human Torch in Fox’s 2015 superhero reboot The Fantastic Four, but the actor has given us plenty of reasons to take notice of his talent.  Head over to Pepsi Pulse to find out why.

Oscar Beat: Which Awards Contenders Will Emerge from the Fall Film Festival Season?

by     Posted 5 days ago

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Ready or not, the awards season is about to begin.  Every year, Oscar season kicks off with the series of film festivals in late August and early September.  It’s at these festivals—Telluride, Toronto, and Venice—that a hefty number of the year’s Oscar hopefuls debut and begin what they hope will be long and prosperous campaigns.  Four out of the last five Best Picture winners screened at both Telluride and Toronto, and as the festivals are about to start later this week, now felt like a good time to preview the block of awards hopefuls that will be screening since the odds are pretty good that this year’s Best Picture winner will have debuted by mid-September.

Hit the jump for the Fall Film Festival Preview 2014 edition of Oscar Beat.

Allison and Adam Predict the 2014 Primetime Emmy Winners

by     Posted 9 days ago

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It was another fantastic year for television, and the 2014 Emmy nominations mostly captured that (…more or less). But when it comes to winners, the Emmys can be a wily beast, as seen in last year’s bevy of baffling wins (Jeff Daniels for NewsroomBobby Cannavale for Boardwalk Empire, among others).  Expect the expected with the Emmys, usually — unless they go completely off the wall.

This year, I have requested the expertise of Collider’s own Adam Chitwood to assist me with picks, not only because he closely follows the awards circuit year-round, he also has a much better track record than I do for picking awards winners in general.  Hit the jump for our guesses about how the results will play out and why in our 2014 Emmy predictions.  The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Seth Meyers, will air live on NBC Monday, August 25th at 8pm ET/5pm PT.

An Introduction to SHAZAM: What Is Dwayne Johnson’s Superhero Debut All About?

by     Posted 9 days ago

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SHAZAM!  With the recent word that Dwayne Johnson will most likely be playing a major role in an upcoming Warner Brothers. adaptation of the comic character Shazam aka Captain Marvel, now seems like a good time to go over what this comic involves, exactly.  Including who is “The Big Red Cheese”, his arch nemesis Black Adam, and which stories are the best “go-to’s” to learn more about both of these characters.  At present, Johnson says he has yet to decide whether he’ll be the hero or the villain of the picture, but rest assured, he’s certainly built and has the charisma to play either.  Hit the jump learn more about Shazam and the upcoming Shazam movie.

Book to Screen: Why THE GIVER Movie Is Nothing Like Lois Lowry’s Novel

by     Posted 11 days ago

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I’ve covered a lot of young adult book-to-film adaptations over the years, and I’ve always made a point of assessing the film as a standalone entity when writing a formal review – but this is not a formal review.  Initially, this piece was intended to be a rather straightforward book/film comparison, but considering Phillip Noyce’s The Giver bears almost no resemblance to Lois Lowry’s award-winning and beloved source material and suffers severely for it, all there is to discuss are differences and the problems they cause.

Hit the jump to read about what the film version of The Giver did different – or rather, did wrong.  [This article contains spoilers for both the book and the movie.] 

THE INHUMANS: An Introduction to Marvel’s Upcoming Galactic Franchise

by     Posted 17 days ago

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With our exclusive announcement that Marvel plans to move forward with an Inhumans film, now feels like the best time to explain to you who this band of misfits actually is and why they’ll be so important to the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward.  In a nutshell, think of Inhumans as a Game of Thrones story with superpowers.  The residents of Attilan, the Inhumans’ hidden city, live in a kingdom far away from humanity.  Ruled by the silent Black Bolt, a king whose voice can literally shatter mountains, the people aren’t so much superheroes as they are a civilization that just happens to be populated with fishmen, women who can control their own hair, and guys with hooves.  Hit the jump for more info on one of Marvel’s next big franchises.

The Films of Andrew Dominik: CHOPPER

by     Posted 17 days ago

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[Although this film is 14 years old, I recognize the possibility that many of you haven’t seen it.  Therefore, there are some slight spoilers below. ]

As promised in last week’s introduction to this brief series of articles, today I take a look at director Andrew Dominik’s debut film Chopper, which was released in 2000.  Based on From The Inside, the autobiography of Mark Brandon Read (aka “Chopper”), the film achieves something quite rare in that it manages to be unflinchingly brutal, warm, and funny in equal measure.  A lot of crime films, especially after Pulp Fiction, have aspired to meld tones like this. But most of them have failed, in large measure because of their self-consciousness.  Chopper isn’t self-conscious.  It doesn’t achieve its alchemy by laying a grouping of desired ingredients out on the table and willing them to collide.  The film is one hundred percent the result of an authentic interest in its subject.  Dominik is so true to his reading of Read’s life that the film reads as an extension of his personality, not a genre checklist.  In particular, there are three moments in the film’s first half that define it as a singular work, and those are what I’ll primarily be focusing on in this piece.

Unsung Hero: Alan Ritchson, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard and Pete Ploszek for TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES

by     Posted 19 days ago

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There are a lot of problems with Jonathan Liebesman’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but it’s just entertaining enough and that’s in large part due to the title characters who, for some reason, aren’t the stars of the film.  Rather than run with what made the original movies so special and put the focus on the brotherhood and dynamics of their relationship, we get a movie about April O’Neil’s aspiration to become a hard news reporter.

Thanks to the fact that Megan Fox and Will Arnett are two of the most famous names in the film, the four guys responsible for the heart of it, the Turtles, aren’t even getting a fraction of the amount of recognition they deserve, so this edition of Unsung Hero goes to Alan Ritchson, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard and Pete Ploszek.  Hit the jump for more.

Unsung Hero: THE PURGE: ANARCHY’s Frank Grillo

by     Posted 39 days ago

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Welcome to “Unsung Hero,” a new feature we’re starting up to bring attention to actors, directors and other folks behind our favorite films who might not be in the spotlight as much as they deserve.  With The Purge: Anarchy in theaters now, we’re giving the inaugural installment to Frank Grillo.

The guy’s been around for a while having had a run on Guiding Light back in the late 90s and appearing in movies like The Sweetest Thing and Minority Report.  But even with snagging more substantial roles in films like Warrior, End of Watch and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Grillo isn’t exactly a household name just yet, so we’re going to do our part to change that.  Hit the jump for more.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Profile: Get to Know Rocket Raccoon

by     Posted 51 days ago

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Last, but certainly not least, in our character profiles for Marvel’s new film Guardians of the Galaxy, we look into the life and times of Rocket Raccoon.  Voiced by Bradley Cooper, Rocket is by far the strangest of the Guardians you’ll be seeing on screen, and that’s saying something when one of his teammates is a walking, talking tree.  This diminutive anthropomorphic gunslinger packs the most artillery of group, carrying guns that you would think would be difficult for a normal person to wield, let alone a raccoon.  Hit the jump for more info on what’s sure to be the breakout character of the film.

The 2014 Emmy Nominations: 5 Surprises, 5 Snubs, and How the Voters Choose

by     Posted 53 days ago

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As predicted in who should be nominated for the Emmys the actual 2014 Emmy nominations provoked irritation and boredom by essentially copying and pasting the same names and series as the last several years.  There were a few adjustments: True Detective rightfully knocked Homeland out of the Best Drama list, but did Downton Abbey and House of Cards really deserve slots over The Good Wife‘s best season yet, not to mention an outstanding year for The Americans?  Hit the jump to learn the method behind this madness, as well as the picks for five surprises and five snubs from some of the non-major categories.

THAT MOMENT Provides a Snapshot of the Film Industry in 1999

by     Posted 53 days ago

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Last night I opened up an article I had earmarked earlier in the day and watched That Moment, the amazingly candid and engaging 72 minute documentary included on the 2000 DVD release of writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson‘s 1999 epic Magnolia.  And I was hit with a wave of nostalgia unlike anything I had felt in quite some time.  It might be odd that I would find the fanfare that greeted the 25th anniversary of 1989′s Batman to be little more than noise, only to be almost overcome by a 14 year old DVD supplement. But that’s what happened.

Of course, it probably helps that I watched this doc obsessively upon its release.  I was just starting to fall in love not only with film, but with the process of making it, and I must have sat down to watch this thing at least 20 times within my first year of owning the DVD.  The nostalgia didn’t come as a fondess for that time in my life though. It came in the form of a bittersweet remembrance of how things used to be in Hollywood not all that long ago.  Or, perhaps, as someone who didn’t even live in California at the time, a remembrance of the way I imagined things to beHead below for more.

The 2014 Emmys: Who Should Be Nominated?

by     Posted 54 days ago

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Before Thursday, when the real 2014 Emmy nominations will become known (and spark, probably, both outrage and boredom), there’s a chance to suggest who should be nominated in each major category.  This isn’t about winners and losers, but about recognizing some of the best talent on TV this past year (or the Emmy year: from June 1, 2013 to May 31, 2014).  There are sure to be some omissions and snubs even within my own list, so hit the jump to check out my choices (and occasional Emmy-rules-bending inclusions).

Everything You Need to Know about the New Diagon Alley Expansion at Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter

by     Posted 71 days ago

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Harry Potter is a cultural touchstone that’s destined to endure for generations to come.  Author J.K. Rowling created a universe unlike any other with her book series, which grew darker and more complex with each subsequent entry.  The novels wholly transported readers to a place that was joyful, fun, challenging, and dangerous, and that experience was adapted for the big screen with the Harry Potter film series, which immersed fans even further into the magical universe.  With Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park attraction at the Islands of Adventure in Orlando, fans were then treated to their first tangible, large-scale Harry Potter experience.  That initial park opened in 2010, and now Universal is ready to present the new—and superior—expansion: Diagon Alley.

In anticipation of the grand opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida on July 8th, Collider was recently invited for an extensive preview of what Diagon Alley has to offer.  After the jump, I’ll walk you through some of the highlights of the new attraction, including a working Hogwarts Express, genuine magic wands, Knockturn Alley, wonderfully detailed shops, the glorious new Butterbeer ice cream, and much more.  And if you missed my over 100 photos from the attraction, click here.

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