Hot on the heels of last week’s news that Justin Theroux (Wanderlust) has been tapped to lead Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof’s new HBO pilot The Leftovers, four more actors have joined the cast. Deadline reports that Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who), Ann Dowd (Compliance), Amanda Warren (Seven Psychopaths), and Carrie Coon have joined the ensemble. The potential series is based on the book of the same name by Tom Perrotta and takes place after the Rapture, centering on the people in a small town that didn’t make the cut.
Eccleston, who will be seen later this year as the villain in Marvel’s Thor: The Dark World, has been tapped to play Matt Jamison, a former reverend and current editor of his self-published tabloid. Dowd will play Patti Levin, the leader of an organization that is somewhere between a cult and a movement, Coon will play Nora Durst, a woman who loses her husband and child in the Rapture, and Warren will play Lucy Warburton, the town’s Mayor. Peter Berg is directing the pilot.
Casting is underway for Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof’s first TV series since the ABC drama ended its run in 2010, and the show’s lead has now been set. Variety reports that Justin Theroux has been tapped to topline The Leftovers, which is based on Tom Perrotta’s novel of the same name that takes place after the Rapture, centering on the people that didn’t make the cut. Theroux will play the show’s lead, chief of police Kevin Garvey who is described as “a father of two who is trying to maintain some semblance of normalcy in a world that is starting to completely reject that notion.”
Friday Night Lights helmer Peter Berg is directing the pilot for HBO, and Lindelof will serve as executive producer/showrunner alongside fellow EP’s Perotta, Ron Yerxa, Albert Berger, Sarah Aubrey and Berg should HBO decided to order the pilot to series. Theroux is best known in front of the camera for appearing in Wanderlust, Your Highness, and Parks and Recreation, but he’s also a screenwriter, having penned the scripts for Iron Man 2 and Tropic Thunder. Hit the jump for a synopsis of Perotta’s novel.
Damon Lindelof is on the interview circuit, mostly explaining what he did with Star Trek Into Darkness. Lost ended in 2006, and Lindelof is waiting to hear if HBO will pick up his Rapture series The Leftovers, which would throw him back into the grind of producing a television show. In the transition years, Lindelof has tackled a variety of sci-fi tentpoles: Star Trek, Cowboys & Aliens, Prometheus. The next is Tomorrowland, an intriguing project at Disney that Brad Bird (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) will direct. George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, and Raffey Cassidy are on board to star.
Rumored plot details leaked in March. Lindelof didn’t elaborate much on what was out there other than to say some of the public information is “completely and totally erroneous.” But he did discuss the inspiration behind the project, how he wants to give Tomorrowland a story (the Pirates of the Caribbean treatment), and his fascination with Disney history. Read what he had to say after the jump.
In the lead-up to Star Trek Into Darkness, co-writer Damon Lindelof said that the reason for the secrecy was “the audience needs to have the same experience that the crew is having. You’re Kirk, you’re Spock, you’re McCoy, so if they don’t know who the bad guy is going to be in the movie, then you shouldn’t know.” Lindelof added that if people knew who the villain was before the movie opened, then it would have been a let-down when it was revealed in the movie. Now that audiences have seen Star Trek Into Darkness, and opened the “mystery box”, there’s some curiosity about the spoilers that were so closely guarded throughout the film’s production and marketing campaign.
Hit the jump for what Lindelof had to say about the villain and more [obviously, there are spoilers ahead for people who haven't seen Star Trek Into Darkness].
As someone whose only firsthand experience with the Star Trek franchise comes by virtue of J.J. Abrams‘ two Trek films, I know I’m in over my head when the topic presents itself. When you mention Trek, you’re referencing (either directly or indirectly) a rich legacy filled with peaks and valleys, genre-defining characters and moments, and an international fanbase that rivals any of pop-culture’s most enduring titles. And yet here I am, with two films under my belt (both of which I enjoyed), talking about it. Obviously, I have nothing at stake with regards to Star Trek Into Darkness. Whether you like it or dislike it is of no consequence to me. My only aim today is to extend a humble word of caution to the Trek fans who have years of equity built-up in their beloved franchise: be careful not to dismiss or begrudge it solely because it’s trying to appeal to the largest possible audience. Abrams’ Trek films aren’t above reproach, but they also aren’t void of redeeming qualities. Try to at least acknowledge some of those qualities when tearing into them or risk coming off as someone whose real issue is that a bunch of people now enjoy this thing that you once considered yourself unique for liking.
All preachiness aside, this week’s Top 5 includes several interviews from Star Trek Into Darkness, rumors surrounding Christopher Nolan being approached to direct James Bond 24, the first trailers for Marvel’s new ABC series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., a new trailer for Guillermo Del Toro‘s Pacific Rim, and new photos and a video from the set of director Jose Padilha‘s RoboCop remake. If I haven’t lost you yet, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.
With J.J. Abrams Star Trek Into Darkness now playing around the world, we recently landed an exclusive phone interview with Damon Lindelof. During the interview, the Into Darkness screenwriter/producer talked about making the sequel, the length of the first cut, deleted scenes, how the beginning of the film changed during the editing process, whether an extended cut of Into Darkness will be on the Blu-ray, when a third film could possibly get made, and a lot more. Hit the jump for what he had to say.
There are those who boldly go where none have gone before on movie screens and those who do it in real life; you can chat with both during a Google+ Hangout with the cast and crew of Star Trek Into Darkness, plus real astronauts from NASA. Director J.J. Abrams, writer Damon Lindelof and stars Chris Pine, Alice Eve and John Cho will join Chris Cassidy, who is currently on the International Space Station, and Earth-bound astronauts Michael Fincke and Kjell Lindgren to talk Star Trek fiction and NASA fact. More importantly, this is your chance to ask questions of both sets of space adventurers! (Just don’t ask what happens when you wring out a washcloth in zero gravity. It’s been done.) Hit the jump for all the details.
Star Trek Into Darkness also stars Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana,Benedict Cumberbatch, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Anton Yelchin and Bruce Greenwood and opens in IMAX 3D tomorrow, and in both 2D and 3D in traditional theaters on May 16th.
Last summer, Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof talked about his collaboration with Tom Perrotta (Election) in adapting Perrotta’s 2011 post-Rapture novel The Leftovers for HBO, which the premium network picked up in February. It was announced today (via Production Weekly) that Peter Berg (Friday Night Lights, Hancock, Battleship) is now on board to direct the pilot, continuing a trend of movie directors making a move to the small screen. Filming will take place in New York and should start in mid-June, so expect a 2014 premiere date should HBO pick the pilot up to series.
The Leftovers marks Lindelof’s first return to television since the end of Lost (however you feel about that), but as has been pointed out, him being so in demand for big-screen projects may see him reduce his involvement with the series a tad, although he did co-write the Leftovers pilot with Perrotta and appears to be on-track to serve as showrunner. Hit the jump for more on The Leftovers.
Quite a hubbub occurred earlier today over 20th Century Fox’s supposed difficulty in developing a sequel to Prometheus, and now screenwriter Damon Lindelof has provided a statement on the matter. Talk of a follow-up to Ridley Scott’s sci-fi film has been around ever since Scott and Co. were doing press for the first film, with both Scott and Lindelof offering up plenty of details regarding where Prometheus 2 might lead. The first film was developed with an eye towards possibly moving forward with a full trilogy should audiences spark to Prometheus, and with a global box office haul of $403 million, Fox is understandably keen on getting a sequel going soon.
Lindelof opted not to come back and pen the script for the follow-up due to scheduling issues, and a new report today claims that Fox and Scott are “freaking out” over trying to figure out the story for Prometheus 2 after Lindelof “abandoned” the project. Hit the jump for much more, including Lindelof’s comment on the matter.
With a little under two months to go before the release of director J.J. Abrams’ sequel Star Trek Into Darkness, it’s a bit crazy to think that the identity of the film’s villain character played by Benedict Cumberbatch has yet to be officially confirmed. There are plenty of people who think they know who Cumberbatch plays (Khaaaaaan!), but no one from the movie has officially stated who this character actually is beyond the name “John Harrison.” This has all been part of the plan from the get-go, hatched by Abrams and his creative partners, including screenwriter Damon Lindelof.
Both Abrams and Lindelof have a bit of a reputation for their penchant for secrecy when it comes to new projects, and the two have essentially mastered the “non-answer answer” with regards to the countless promotional interviews that are necessary for films on the scale of Into Darkness or Prometheus. Lindelof recently spoke a bit about Into Darkness, revealing why it’s so important to them to keep the nature of Cumberbatch’s character a secret and talking about the theme of Into Darkness in relation to the first film. Hit the jump to read on.
Last June, Damon Lindelof talked about his TV adaptation Tom Perrotta‘s novel, The Leftovers. The series would be Lindelof’s first since Lost, and takes place after the “Sudden Departure”, and is about the people who didn’t make the cut. Unlike the Left Behind series, The Leftovers appears to focus more on the practical aspects of a Rapture-like event rather than using it as a gateway for a biblically-influence story. According to Vulture, HBO has ordered a pilot for the series, which will take place three years after the departure. We reported that Lindelof would serve as the showrunner, but since his screenwriter career for feature films seems to have blossomed, I’m not sure if he’ll return to TV on a permanent basis. In any event, he’ll still serve as executive producer alongside Perrotta, Ron Yerxa, and Albert Berger. If HBO orders a series, don’t expect to see it until 2014.
Hit the jump for a synopsis of Perrotta’s novel.
Director Brad Bird’s feature film collaboration with screenwriter Damon Lindelof has an intriguing new title. Previously referred to as 1952, the project (which stars George Clooney) was hatched when Lindelof stumbled across a box in Walt Disney’s personal development lab with the label “1952.” Lindelof and Bird tweeted pictures of the box’s contents last week, giving us a tease as to what the film’s plot may involve. Rumors have swirled that the story may have something to do with the creation of a theme park, and that theory has been given a bit more credence today as Disney has announced that 1952 has been retitled Tomorrowland.
Nothing further was revealed, but my interest in this project seems to grow with each new revelation. Lindelof and Bird are currently working on the script based on an idea by Lindelof and Jeff Jensen, with Bird set to direct and produce. The two hope to begin production this year in anticipation of the film’s December 19, 2014 release date.
Though there are a number of highly anticipated projects in development at the moment (Star Wars 7 anyone?), the collaboration between director Brad Bird and screenwriter Damon Lindelof is certainly one of the more curious upcoming films. Titled 1952, we know very little about the pic other than it’s rumored to be about a middle-aged man’s contact with alien life. George Clooney is set to star, and the genesis of the project apparently came about when Lindelof stumbled upon a box in Walt Disney’s personal development lab with the label “1952” written on it.
Now that the film has a firm release date of December 2014 and production is set to begin later this year, Lindelof and Bird have begun teasing what’s to come. Yesterday Lindelof tweeted a picture of the unopened box, quickly followed by a tweet from Bird that reveals a snapshot of the box’s contents. Hit the jump to take a look.
If you’re looking forward to director J.J. Abrams Star Trek sequel (Star Trek Into Darkness), you’re about to have a great day. That’s because at a recent Star Trek event at Bad Robot, I landed an exclusive interview with co-screenwriter Damon Lindelof and got some great updates on one of the biggest movies of 2013! If you’re curious about the new timeline, when the movie takes place, how writing the sequel was different than the first film, studio notes, how casting Benedict Cumberbatch changed the script, the way Abrams wanted to convey the Enterprise was this massive starship, Easter eggs, Redshirt deaths, and so much more, hit the jump.
If you follow Damon Lindelof on Twitter, you know that he’s a huge fan of both The Walking Dead and Homeland (two of the best shows on television). So when I spoke to him at the recent Star Trek Bad Robot press day (and during a follow up phone call), we talked about the success of The Walking Dead and his thoughts on the Homeland season 2 finale. While Lindelof is not involved with either show, he’s a passionate fan of both and thought you might like to hear his thoughts.
Note: Massive Homeland spoilers are discussed. Do not read unless you are caught up.