AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON Story Details Revealed; Ultron is Tony Stark’s ‘Bad Son’

by     Posted 6 days ago

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Hopefully you haven’t had enough Avengers: Age of Ultron yet because there’s still more information about the film coming in.  So far today we’ve told you about Paul Bettany‘s rendition of Vision and a bit about how Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) will fit into the film, but now we’ve got a little more on the main antagonist, James Spader‘s Ultron, and some rather spoiler-heavy story details as well.

It’s a little surprising that so much Avengers news is hitting just about a week before Marvel’s San Diego Comic-Con panel, but perhaps all of this information will pertain to and possibly enhance the footage they’re planning to show in Hall H on Saturday.  Hit the jump for more.

First AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON Image Reveals the Villainous Robot; Joss Whedon Explains Ultron’s Motive and Origins

by     Posted One week ago

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San Diego Comic-Con 2014 is imminent, but the goodies have already begun to be unveiled.  In this week’s Comic-Con issue of Entertainment Weekly, the first Avengers: Age of Ultron image is revealed in the form of a rather tantalizing cover that gives us a first look at the titular robot baddie.  Played by James Spader via performance capture, Ultron’s origins are actually rooted in Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark, as he invents the artificially intelligent robot as a sort of replacement hero given his reluctance to keep donning the Iron Man suit.

Hit the jump to check out the full image and for much more info on Ultron and the plot of Age of Ultron straight from director Joss Whedon and Downey Jr.  And click here to see even more new images from Avengers 2.

First Trailer and Images for Tommy Lee Jones’ THE HOMESMAN Starring Jones, Hilary Swank, Hailee Steinfeld, and Meryl Streep

by     Posted 100 days ago

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The first trailer and images have gone online for Tommy Lee Jones‘ western drama, The Homesman.  The story centers on a claim-jumping rascal (Jones) and a frontierswoman (Hilary Swank) as they escort three insane women from Nebraska to Iowa and battle the harsh elemental conditions of the prairie.  I loved Jones’ 2005 film The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, which played like a modern-day western.  The Homesman looks more like a straight entry into the genre, but also an interesting one.  There appears to be a tricky balance between Jones’ slightly off-kilter character and the serious dangers he and his traveling companions must face.  Nevertheless, it has an outstanding cast, and I assume we’ll be seeing it later this year since it will be released next month in France.  It’s also a safe assumption that it will make its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, so I’m eager to hear the buzz on the picture.

Hit the jump to check out The Homesman trailer and images.  The film also stars Hailee Steinfeld, Meryl Streep, Tim Blake Nelson, James Spader, William Fichtner, and Jesse PlemonsThe Homesman is currently awaiting U.S. distribution.

High-Quality AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON Set Photos Offer Better Look at Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver, and Ultron

by     Posted 121 days ago

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Earlier today, we posted unofficial video and photos from the Avengers: Age of Ultron shoot in Italy.  What they boast in cool, they lack in clarity.  Now we can update the collection with higher quality photos of the same scene to give you a clearer look at Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch, Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Quicksilver, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, James Spader (or his stunt double) in what we presume is Ultron, plus a bonus shot of director Joss Whedon.  This photo leak could pressure Marvel to release official images soon, especially in the case of Ultron, who likely has some CG in his character design.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Paul Bettany, and Mark Ruffalo also star.  Avengers: Age of Ultron opens May 1, 2015.

James Spader Talks THE BLACKLIST, Shaving His Head for the Role, and Subverting Viewer Expectations

by     Posted 289 days ago

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On the NBC drama series The Blacklist, ex-government agent Raymond “Red” Reddington (James Spader), who has been has been one of the FBI’s Most Wanted fugitives, brokering shadowy deals for criminals across the globe, has mysteriously surrendered to the FBI.  Offering to help catch a blacklist of politicians, mobsters, spies and international terrorists, his one condition is that he speaks only to Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone), an FBI profiler fresh out of Quantico.  What follows is a twisting series of events that will lead everyone to wonder what Red’s true intentions really are.

During this recent interview to discuss his compelling new show, actor James Spader talked about why he wanted to play this character, gradually revealing just what Reddington is up to, how much he anticipates reading each script to see what’s coming next, how wonderful it felt to shave his head for the role, just how often the show will continue to switch directions from what viewers expect, and how much input he gets with the scripts.  Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

James Spader Talks THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, What Attracted Him to the Marvel Franchise, and Working Around His Schedule for THE BLACKLIST

by     Posted 296 days ago

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Earlier today, Collider was able to participate in a conference call with actor James Spader for his new edge-of-your-seat drama series The Blacklist, which airs on Monday nights on NBC.  Naturally, during the interview, talk briefly turned to his upcoming role as the villain Ultron for the sequel, The Avengers: Age of Ultron.  While we will run what he had to say about his work on The Blacklist, and what drew him to that role, we wanted to be sure to share what he had to say about how he ended up as part of the Marvel universe.

When asked about what made him want to sign on, James Spader talked about how he first met Kevin Feige a couple of years ago with the desire to become a part of the Marvel world, having been a fan of comic books as a kid, his sons’ interest in comics, and how Joss Whedon told him that he wasn’t thinking about anybody else for the role.  He also said he hopes for a smooth transition between when he finishes The Blacklist and when he goes off to London to shoot The Avengers 2.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

James Spader and Scarlett Johansson Talk THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON

by     Posted 296 days ago

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Last month, Marvel announced James Spader was set to play the villain Ultron in The Avengers: Age of Ultron.  Since Ultron is an evil robot, we didn’t know the extent of Spader’s performance.  Would it just be voice work or would he be doing motion-capture work like Mark Ruffalo did for the Hulk?  While doing the press rounds for his new TV series The Blacklist, Spader told The Inquirer [via CS], “I went in for them to take very extensive photographs, head scans, body scans, and all kinds of things in preparation for figuring out how the hell I’m gonna fit in this Ultron character!”  It sounds like Spader will probably be doing motion-capture work, which isn’t too surprising since Ultron is a humanoid robot.

For more another brief bit of info on the upcoming superhero sequel, hit the jump for a comment from from Scarlett Johansson.  The film also stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, and Samuel L. JacksonThe Avengers: Age of Ultron opens May 1, 2015.

Joss Whedon Talks Casting James Spader in THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON; Says He Was His “First and Only Choice”

by     Posted 315 days ago

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As production on the highly anticipated Marvel sequel The Avengers: Age of Ultron looks to get underway in March, writer/director Joss Whedon is nearly finished casting the film.  The biggest news we’ve heard thus far, though, is that James Spader will be playing the film’s villain, the titular evil robot Ultron.  It was an inspired bit of casting and extremely fitting when you have someone like Joss Whedon running the shots, and now the filmmaker has spoken briefly about how he settled on Spader to play the chief antagonist.  Hit the jump to read on.

James Spader to Play Ultron in THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON

by     Posted 328 days ago

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Marvel is continuing their streak of casting great actors in their films.  The studio has announced that they’ve cast three-time Emmy winner James Spader as the villain Ultron in Joss Whedon‘s The Avengers: Age of Ultron.  Naturally, there are no details beyond the casting.  Since Ultron is a humanoid robot, will Spader do motion-capture, or will he just be providing the voice?  How will it fit into Spader’s schedule if his new series The Blacklist (which looks quite good) is picked up for a full season?  Obviously, we have no idea how Spader will voice the part, but he’s an actor I like, and I’ll be curious to see what he does with the role.

Hit the jump for the press release.  The Avengers: Age of Ultron opens May 1, 2015.

The Road to Oscar: Best Supporting Actor

by     Posted 1 year, 155 days ago

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We’re only a short week away from the 85th Academy Awards, and with the close of Oscar season approaching, we’d thought this would be a nice opportunity to take a look back at how some of the races have played out, chronicling the ebbs and flows of the past 12 months or so that got us to where we are today.  We’re kicking things off with one of the more open categories: Best Supporting Actor.

One important thing to keep in mind when looking at the Oscars is that the race is incredibly fluid.  A film could be the clear frontrunner in a category one week, then might stumble to second or even third place in the ensuing weeks.  With this series of articles, we’ll be looking at exactly how much each race has changed, starting with Best Supporting Actor.  Hit the jump to read on.

James Spader Talks LINCOLN, Collaborating with Steven Spielberg, THE OFFICE, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 248 days ago

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Expanding into more theaters this weekend is Steven Spielberg’s Best Picture nomination shoo-in, Lincoln.  The period piece is less a cut-and-dry biopic of America’s 16th President, played brilliantly by Daniel Day-Lewis, and more of an examination of the burdens placed on Lincoln to keep a nation from falling apart while abolishing slavery and attempting to hold his personal life together. Lincoln also stars Tommy Lee Jones, James SpaderDavid Strathairn, Sally Field, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lee Pace and Hal Holbrook.  For more on the film, here’s three clips, Dave’s review, a great trailer, and all our previous coverage.

At the recent Los Angeles press day I got to speak with James Spader.  He talked about what it was like to collaborate with Steven Spielberg and the rest of the cast, how he got involved in the project, his time on The Office,  what he’s thinking about doing in the future, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

LINCOLN Clips Reveal Superb Performances of Supporting Cast, Including Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader and David Strathairn

by     Posted 1 year, 255 days ago

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Although the last quarter of this year is positively stacked with fantastic films, Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln should be on your short list. The period piece is less a cut-and-dry biopic of America’s 16th President, played perfectly as always by Daniel Day-Lewis, and more of an examination of the burdens placed on Lincoln to keep a nation from falling apart while abolishing slavery and attempting to hold his personal life together.  While the film is excellent overall (you can read my review here), a highlight of Lincoln is the excellent supporting cast.  A previous selection of clips focused mainly on the President, but this new batch  shows off snippets of the performances by Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader and David Strathairn to name a few.  Hit the jump to check them out.

Lincoln, also starring Sally Field, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lee Pace and Hal Holbrook, opens November 16th.

International Trailer for LINCOLN Is the Best One Yet

by     Posted 1 year, 259 days ago

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Just in time for Election Day, a new international trailer for director Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln has been released, and it’s by far the best one yet.  This trailer actually delves into the central focus of the long-in-the-works drama—the passing of the 13th Amendment—and gives us a much better idea of what kind of biopic Spielberg and screenwriter Tony Kushner have crafted.  Much of this trailer is reminiscent of The West Wing, with Daniel Day-Lewis’ Lincoln and his advisers working to secure enough votes to ensure that the amendment will pass.  The trailer also teases the multitude of strong performances from the ridiculously talented ensemble, and I can’t wait to see the whole thing unfold onscreen.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The film also stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, David Oyelowo, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader, John Hawkes, Michael Stuhlbarg, David Strathairn, Walton Goggins, Tim Blake Nelson, Bruce McGill, Jackie Earle Haley, Lee Pace and Jared HarrisLincoln opens on November 16th.

New Images from Steven Spielberg’s LINCOLN, THE LAST STAND Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and 21 AND OVER with Justin Chon and Miles Teller

by     Posted 1 year, 269 days ago

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A few new images to share with you today from the following films:

  • Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln stars Daniel Day-Lewis in the title role, but also features Jackie Earle Haley, Lee Pace, Hal Holbrook and James Spader.
  • Jee-woon Kim’s actioner The Last Stand shows off a new look at stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Rodrigo Santoro.
  • Jon Lucas and Scott Moore’s 21 and Over starring Justin Chon, Miles Teller and Skylar Astin 

Hit the jump to check out the new images.

First Full Trailer and New Images for Steven Spielberg’s LINCOLN Starring Daniel Day-Lewis

by     Posted 1 year, 312 days ago

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We posted the first teaser trailer for Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln earlier this week in anticipation of the full trailer being released during the Google + Q&A.  Now that the full trailer is online, we finally get a chance to hear Daniel Day-Lewis speak as Abraham Lincoln.  If I’m being honest, his choice of tone and inflection is not exactly what I had expected, but who am I to tell Day-Lewis what to do?  There are plenty of scenes in the legislative houses, on the streets and on the battlefield, and they all give a sense of scope and tone to the film, just like Spielberg said it would during the Q&A.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The film also stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, David Oyelowo, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader, John Hawkes, Michael Stuhlbarg, David Strathairn, Walton Goggins, Tim Blake Nelson, Bruce McGill, Jackie Earle Haley, Lee Pace and Jared HarrisLincoln opens on November 16th. [Update: We added 7 new images after the jump]

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