Alexandre Aja Talks HORNS, The Perks of Working with Daniel Radcliffe, Blending Genres, His Approach to Adapting a Book, and More at Comic-Con

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With Horns, arriving in theaters October 31st, we get to see a softer side of Alexandre AjaHorns stars Daniel Radcliffe as Ig Perrish, a grieving man widely believed to have raped and murdered his beloved girlfriend Merrin (Juno Temple).  When Ig wakes up with a set of horns and a newfound ability to make people do and say the most devious of their desires, he sees it as an opportunity to seek revenge on the real killer.  As a director and producer known for intense horror films (The Hills Have Eyes, High Tension) it’s fun to watch Aja stretch his range and deliver some genuinely sweet romance and touching dramatic moments.  However, fans don’t need to fear he’s lost his horror touch – Horns also delivers on genre elements, including some beautifully bloody practical effects.

Before his Comic-Con panel on Friday, I sat down for a one-on-one interview with Aja.  He talked about navigating through so many genres in a single film, why he loves Joe Hill‘s novel, whether or not adapting a novel is different from remaking a film, casting Daniel Radcliffe, and More.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Mark McGrath Talks SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE, His Reaction to the First Film, Adjusting His Performing Style, Script Changes, and Releasing a Solo Album

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In the Syfy original movie Sharknado 2: The Second One, directed by Anthony C. Ferrante from a screenplay by Thunder Levin, a freak weather system turns its deadly fury on New York City, unleashing a Sharknado on the population and its most cherished iconic sites, and leaving Fin (Ian Ziering) and April (Tara Reid) to save the Big Apple.  The film also stars Vivica A. Fox, Mark McGrath, Kari Wuhrer, Judah Friedlander, Judd Hirsch, Kelly Osbourne, Andy Dick and Perez Hilton.

During this exclusive interview with Collider, Sugar Ray frontman Mark McGrath talked about how he got involved with Sharknado 2, being a fan of the first film, adjusting his big performing style to the subtleties of acting, why he enjoys getting lost in a character, that they had to do a lot of script changes on the fly, how great it was to get to shoot in New York City, and the social media phenomenon of Sharknado.  He also talked about why he still loves touring with Sugar Ray, and why it might be the right time to finally release a solo album.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

ANT-MAN Director Peyton Reed Talks Stepping Into Edgar Wright’s Shoes, the State of the Script and the Film’s Villains at Comic-Con

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Director Peyton Reed, known for his fantastic work in Bring it On and Down With Love, was most certainly facing an uphill battle this past weekend at the San Diego Comic-Con. After all, he’s not just the new director on Ant-Man, he’s replacing geek-beloved auteur Edgar Wright on the project.  It takes a confident hand to introduce yourself as the guy who replaced Wright at this kind of convention, but I’m confident Reed will turn in a good movie (however different it may be than Wright’s take).

But life moves on and Ant-Man is marching forward (as ants do) with cast members Paul RuddMichael DouglasCorey Stoll, and Evangeline Lilly still in place.  Steve caught up with Reed at SDCC right after the film’s panel and was able to spend a few minutes with him getting a status report on the project.  Topics include the state of the script, how it fits into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the film’s villains and more.  Hit the jump to watch.  Ant-Man opens July 17th, 2015.

Benicio del Toro Talks GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, Playing the Collector, His Marvel Contract, INHERENT VICE, PARADISE LOST, and More

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Opening this weekend is director James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy.  As most of you know, the story follows five intergalactic misfits—Peter Quill aka Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel), and Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper)—as they set out to protect a powerful and mysterious orb from the villainous Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace).  Loaded with great performances, an extremely funny script, and some fantastic action sequences, Guardians of the Galaxy should be a big hit with moviegoers and it helps to explain why Marvel was so quick to announce that a sequel is coming July 28, 2017.

At the recent Los Angeles press day, I landed an exclusive video interview with Benicio del Toro, who plays The Collector.   He talked about how he got involved in the Marvel universe, his contract with the studio, how the look of the Collector came together, upcoming films Inherent Vice and Paradise Lost, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Comic-Con: Colin Firth and Samuel L. Jackson Talk KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE, Finally Getting to Do an Action Movie, Putting a Twist on Bond, and More

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Based on the acclaimed comic book and directed by Matthew Vaughn, Kingsman: The Secret Service tells the story of a super secret spy organization that recruits a street kid into the agency’s ultra-competitive training program, as a global threat is emerging.

While at Comic-Con for a presentation in Hall H (read our full recap of the panel right here), co-stars Colin Firth and Samuel L. Jackson spoke at a conference, in which they talked about what drew them to this project, how a movie like this reminds an actor of the time that they were lost in a fantasy world, as a kid, getting to kick some ass, and what their characters’ motivation is.  Check out what they had to say after the jump. 

Comic-Con: Damon Wayans Jr. Talks LET’S BE COPS, Improvising, Scary Ride-Along Research, NEW GIRL, and More

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The action comedy Let’s Be Cops is the ultimate buddy cop movies, except for the fact that they’re not actually cops.  When two struggling pals (Jake Johnson, Damon Wayans Jr.) dress as police officers for a costume party, they get tangled up in real-life crime and become neighborhood sensations.

While at Comic-Con for a presentation in Hall H, actor Damon Wayans Jr. spoke to press at a conference, in which he talked about how much fun the film was to make, that probably 70% of the movie is improvised, how the fact that everything they’re doing is actually illegal sets it apart from other buddy comedies, working with Jake Johnson on this vs. New Girl, going on a scary ride-along for research, how every scene went off the rails but still made it into the film, the great message of the film, and how unlikely it is that there will be any more Happy Endings.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Comic-Con: M. Night Shyamalan Talks WAYWARD PINES, the Difficulty of Learning the TV Process, Keeping the Show Grounded, and More

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Based on the best-selling novel Pines by Blake Crouch and brought to life by filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan, Wayward Pines is the intense new mind-bending, 10-episode event thriller from Fox.  When Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke (Matt Dillon) drives to the town of Wayward Pines, Idaho, to search for two missing federal agents, mysteries within the town pile up and Burke quickly begins to wonder whether he’ll ever make it out again.  The show also stars Terrence Howard, Carla Gugino, Melissa Leo, Toby Jones, Juliette Lewis, Reed Diamond, Shannyn Sossamon, Tim Griffin and Charlie Tahan.

While at Comic-Con to premiere the series, executive producer/pilot director M. Night Shyamalan spoke to press at a roundtable interview about what attracted him to this script, why TV is a better medium for this story, getting their first choice actor for each role, working with such a talented cast, how hard he found the TV experience, and developing a show and character bible that shifted completely, as they went.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Comic-Con: Julie Plec Talks THE ORIGINALS, What’s Coming in Season 2, New Characters, the Possiblity of a Caroline Crossover, and More

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Spin-offs are a tough gig, but with The Originals the CW has an undeniable success on their hands. Building on the mythology established in The Vampire Diaries, creator Julie Plec followed original vampires Klaus (Joseph Morgan), Elijah (Daniel Gillies), and Rebekah (Claire Holt) to New Orleans where they forged new alliances, battled old foes, and of course, had it out with each other on the regular.

In anticipation of the second season, the cast and crew were on hand at Comic-Con 2014, but before their panel I sat down for a roundtable interview with executive producer/showrunner Julie Plec. She talked about some new characters heating things up in season two, if we can ever expect to see Caroline, what is going to be the biggest threat to the original family, Klaus’s biological father, and more. Check out what she had to say about The Originals season 2 after the jump.

Comic-Con: Guillermo del Toro, Carlton Cuse, and Chuck Hogan Talk THE STRAIN, Upending the Vampire Genre, the Extent of del Toro’s Involvement, and More

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Horror mastermind Guillermo del Toro has been fascinated with vampires since he was a teenager and figured out early on the version that he liked more was not the romantic leading man, but the soul-less body, driven to brutality by an unquenchable thirst.  In The Strain, his first foray into television, del Toro has created frightening vampire creatures that are worlds apart from the brooding, forlorn vampires that are popular today.

Based on the book trilogy that del Toro co-wrote with Chuck Hogan, The Strain follows a group of CDC scientists who discover a virus has been unleashed on New York City with devastating consequences.  Hogan, del Toro and executive producer Carlton Cuse stopped by Comic-Con to screen the season’s third episode for attendees before it aired, but before heading over to Hall H they talked to the press about the show.  Hit the jump to read highlights from their interviews.

Kevin Feige Talks AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, Josh Brolin (Thanos) and the Infinity Gauntlet, a Female THOR Movie, DOCTOR STRANGE, and More

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Shortly after the Avengers: Age of Ultron panel in Hall H at Comic-Con Saturday night, I got to conduct video interviews with most of the cast in the press room.  While the interviews had to be conducted in groups due to how many reporters were in attendance, we still managed to get a lot of great information from the cast.   You can watch my Paul Rudd, Mark Ruffalo and Chris Evans interviews by clicking the links.

In addition to the cast of Avengers, I also got a few minutes with Marvel’s Kevin Fiege.  He talked about the great Joss Whedon dialogue in Avengers: Age of Ultron, the possibility of Thanos in Guardians of the Galaxy 2, how much Josh Brolin wearing the Infinity Gauntlet on stage indicates where things are going in the Marvel universe, the likelihood of making Thor a female down the road, the rumors that Joaquin Phoenix might play Doctor Strange, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Briana Evigan Talks STEP UP ALL IN, Returning to the Franchise, Her Favorite Dance Sequence, and More

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Step Up All In takes one of the most popular dance franchises in film history to all new heights, following Miami street dancer Sean Asa (Ryan Guzman) as he tries to make it in Hollywood, only to discover the almost insurmountable odds of making it in the professional dance world.  When he meets the headstrong Andie West (Briana Evigan), they form a new dance crew that reaches the final rounds of a high-stakes reality TV competition that will make their dreams come true.

At the film’s press day, actress Briana Evigan spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about how thrilled she was when she was invited to come back for the fifth film in the Step Up franchise, the experience of returning to a role that she first played six years ago in Step Up 2 the Streets, what Andie has been up to since we last saw her, that they use no stunt doubles, except for one trick that was too challenging to do in the timespan they had to do it in, why this story is so relatable, her favorite dance sequence, and what it’s meant to her to be a part of this highly successful franchise.  Check out what she had to say after the jump.

Director Lasse Hallström and Producer Juliet Blake Talk THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY, Stylistic Differences from CHOCOLAT, and More

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Lasse Hallström’s filmmaking style and sensibility are a perfect match for The Hundred-Foot Journey, a delightful story with a powerful message directed from a screenplay written by Steven Knight based on Richard C. Morais’ best-selling novel.  In a quaint village in the south of France, a heated battle erupts when a colorful new Indian restaurant opens directly across the street from a traditional establishment specializing in French haute cuisine.  Amidst a culture clash of epic proportions, everyone slowly discovers that they share a lot more in common than they realized if only they’re willing to step out of their comfort zone.  Opening August 8th, the film stars Helen Mirren, Manish Dayal, Charlotte Le Bon and Om Puri.

At the film’s recent press day, Hallström and producer Juliet Blake talked about the appeal of the project, how the film differs stylistically from Chocolat, how the sensuality of the performances helped make the food come alive on screen, why they wanted to avoid the usual ways filmmakers show people enjoying food, the role food plays in bringing people and different cultures together, why D.P. Linus Sandgren convinced Hallström to use film, collaborating with composer A.R. Rahman, the decision to cast Mirren and Puri together, why shooting an extra take just for fun often led to the best performance, and what Mirren brought to the film.  Check out the interview after the jump. 

Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Michael Rooker, Benicio Del Toro, Vin Diesel and James Gunn Talk GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

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Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy is such a fun ride, with great action, plenty of laughs, a ton of heart and perfect choices in music.  It will have you singing along, and cheering for the snarky Rocket Raccoon and a talking tree named Groot.

During a conference at the film’s press day actors Chris Pratt (“Peter Quill”/”Star-Lord”), Zoe Saldana (“Gamora”), Dave Bautista (“Dax the Destroyer”), Michael Rooker (“Yondu”), Benicio Del Toro (“The Collector”) and Vin Diesel (“Groot”) were joined by director James Gunn to talk about what attracted them to this project, how liberating it is to not have to fit into the regular Marvel scheme of things, why Yondu is such a bad-ass, fighting the right attitude for Peter Quill/Star-Lord, the emotional journey of the story, the process for having the music organically come from and compliment the story, the physicality of these roles, why the movie references Kevin Bacon, and everyone’s favorite song on the soundtrack.  Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

Hannah Ware Talks HITMAN: AGENT 47, Working with Rupert Friend and Zachary Quinto, Filming in Berlin, and More at Comic-Con

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Shortly before Aleksander Bach’s Hitman: Agent 47 world premiered its trailer in Hall H at Comic-Con (our recap of the trailer and panel is here), I sat down with Hannah Ware for an exclusive video interview.  Based on the popular video game franchise, Hitman: Agent 47 tells the story of an elite, genetically engineered assassin (Rupert Friend), known only by the last two digits of a barcode tattooed on the back of his neck.  His latest target is a young woman, but the mission brings startling revelations about both of their pasts.  The film also stars Zachary Quinto.

During the interview Hannah Ware talked about preparing for Comic-Con, what people should know about the movie, shooting on location in Berlin and Singapore, working with Rupert Friend and Zachary Quinto, the action scenes, what she collects, her excitement for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Chris Evans Talks AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON, the Great Joss Whedon Dialogue, and More at Comic-Con

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Shortly after the Avengers: Age of Ultron cast left Hall H at Comic-Con Saturday night, I got to conduct video interviews with most of them in the press room.  While the interviews had to be conducted in groups due to how many reporters were in attendance, we still managed to get a lot of great information from the cast.  You can watch my Paul Rudd and Mark Ruffalo interviews by clicking the links.

During the interview with Chris Evans, he talked about the process of making Avengers: Age of Ultron, the great Joss Whedon dialogue, if they’re going to address where the other Avengers were during their stand-alone movies, if he had one Avenger to help him out in Snowpiercer who would he pick, and more.  Hit the jump to watch what Chris Evans had to say at Comic-Con.

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