Chris Rock and Julia Louis-Dreyfus Turned Down the Offer to Host This Year’s Oscars

by     Posted 11 hours ago

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It was announced last week that the excellent Neil Patrick Harris will be hosting this coming February’s Oscar ceremony, but it turns out that NPH wasn’t the Academy’s first choice.  THR reports that producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron—who have produced the last two ceremonies in a row—first “begged” Ellen Degeneres to return as Oscar for this year’s ceremony.  She firmly declined the offer, and then they next approached Chris Rock, who hosted in 2005.  He turned down the offer as well, and so Zadan and Meron then went to Julia Louis-Dreyfus who, shocker, said “no”.  They then finally landed on Harris, who graciously agreed to take on the gig.  More after the jump.

New THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 1 TV Spot Features Teary-Eyed Josh Hutcherson

by     Posted 12 hours ago

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Whether you’re into the non-stop Hunger Games marketing campaigns or not, there’s no denying that Lionsgate knows how to deliver quality promotional material.  At this point, we’ve already seen a teaser trailer, a full-length trailer and a TV spot for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 yet this latest TV spot still rocks some brand new footage and a relatively unique tone.  The film’s promotional push isn’t just laying it all out there to get as many moviegoers into theaters as possible.  Lionsgate is actually taking more of a storytelling-centric approach, having each new piece add a layer to the situation, encouraging viewers to become invested well before the movie even comes out.

Hit the jump to check out the latest The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 TV spot featuring Willow Shields’ Primrose Everdeen, a little encouragement from Elizabeth Banks as Effie and a super sad Josh HutchersonMockingjay – Part 1 is due in theaters on November 21st.

THE HOBBIT Movies Cost $745 Million, But That’s Okay Because They’ve Already Made Nearly $2 Billion

by     Posted 12 hours ago

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Calculating the budget of Hollywood films is a tricky business.  Rarely is the “official” number the actual amount that a movie cost, and even if a movie seems to have made more than its reported budget, that doesn’t factor in the cost of marketing and distribution; roughly, a movie has to make about one and half times its budget to become profitable.  The cost, obviously, goes up with sequels, as studios put more money into a film that now has a much higher probability of becoming profitable thanks to brand recognition based on the first film.  In the case of The Hobbit franchise—a series of prequels to one of the most popular and successful film trilogies of all time—one can imagine the amount of money Warner Bros. spent to bring them to fruition.

But now one doesn’t have to imagine that number, as it is being reported that the cost of the three Hobbit films has now totaled $745 million.  That’s, uh, a lot of money, but even still, it’s looking like most of what the final installment, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, makes in theaters will be profit.  More after the jump.

Steve Coogan to Replace Philip Seymour Hoffman in Showtime Comedy Series HAPPYISH

by     Posted 12 hours ago

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Philip Seymour Hoffman‘s death left a gaping void in the acting world, and there are so many more roles it would have been wonderful to see him tackle.  Among his planned projects was Happyish, a 10-episode half-hour comedy series for Showtime created, written, and executive produced by This American Life contributor Shalom Auslander (who also wrote the terrific book Foreskin’s Lament).  The series is described as “a soul-searching examination of our pursuit of happiness, a pursuit that might just be the very thing causing our unhappiness in the first place.”

The project was in stasis following Hoffman’s death, but Showtime has decided to move forward by casting Steve Coogan in the lead role of “Thom Payne, a 44 year-old man whose world is thrown into disarray when his 25 year-old “wunderkind” boss arrives, saying things like ‘digital,’ ‘social’ and ‘viral.’” The series was also set to star Kathryn Hahn and Rhys Ifans, but there’s no mention of them in the press release, so it’s possible that their roles—Thom’s wife and his mentor—are being re-cast.  Hit the jump for the press release.  The half-hour pilot will be shot in New York in December.

Kaitlyn Dever Talks LAGGIES, Working with Lynn Shelton, the Lesson She Learned from Keira Knightley, THE GREENS ARE GONE, and More

by     Posted 13 hours ago

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Kaitlyn Dever is one of film and television’s fastest rising and most versatile young actresses and 2014 has been another busy year for her.  She stars in Lynn Shelton’s new comedy, Laggies, opening October 24th, in a supporting role with Keira Knightley and Chloë Grace Moretz playing a hard partying teenager with a sarcastic sense of humor who says whatever’s on her mind.  She also stars in Jason Reitman’s Men, Women & Children opposite Jennifer Garner which hit theaters last weekend.  Finally, she’s currently starring in the popular ABC sitcom, Last Man Standing, which followed her recurring role in the acclaimed FX drama Justified.

I recently landed an exclusive interview with Dever who talked about her reaction when she first read the script for Laggies, the appeal of the role, finding the right mindset to play Misty, the important lesson she learned from Knightley, what she enjoyed most about working with Shelton, her friends and family screening, playing a daughter in Men, Women & Children who’s trapped in the world of her mom’s strict rules, her thoughts on social media and college, her challenging role in The Greens Are Gone, her aspirations to write and possibly direct, her music, and the band she plans to start with her sister.  Hit the jump to read the rest of the interview.

Edward Norton Revisits the Decision to Not Play The Hulk in THE AVENGERS

by     Posted 13 hours ago

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Remember when we first got word that Edward Norton would not be reprising his role as The Hulk in The Avengers?  It wasn’t pretty.  When the news dropped, it was being reported that Norton wanted in, but Marvel wanted someone with a lower price tag.  However, when Marvel reps chimed in, they claimed that they passed on Norton because they needed someone who “embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members,” essentially accusing Norton of not being a team player.  Shortly after, Norton’s agent fired back claiming that Marvel’s statement was a “purposefully misleading, inappropriate attempt to paint our client in a negative light.”  Soon thereafter, Norton took the more righteous route by posting a sincere thank you to Marvel and to the fans who supported his run as Bruce Banner.

Four years later, Norton’s got an outstanding new feature on his resume that could score him an Oscar nomination, but The Hulk talk still rages on.  Hit the jump to find out what Norton had to say about ditching the role.

Christopher Nolan and Matthew McConaughey Talk INTERSTELLAR Secrets, Sci-Fi Ambitions, and CG Hurdles in Lengthy Interview

by     Posted 13 hours ago

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The release of Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi epic Interstellar is finally within arm’s reach, and as the date looms closer we’re starting to hear much more from Nolan himself and his impressive cast about how the project came together, the experience of making it, and the extent to which Nolan grounded the space-centered film in reality.  All of this and more is touched on during a lengthy roundtable interview with Nolan, Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, and Anne Hathaway in the latest issue of THR, and we’ve taken the liberty of gathering up some of the highlights from the fascinating and somewhat revealing conversation.

Hit the jump to see what they had to say about Nolan’s long-standing fascination with sci-fi, his first meeting with McConaughey, tackling large-scale CG effects, and more.  The film opens in 70mm IMAX and 35mm on November 5th and everywhere else on November 7th.

Dark Horse Graphic Novel POLAR: CAME FROM THE COLD Scores Big Screen Adaptation

by     Posted 14 hours ago

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Poor Constantin Films is clearly trying to deliver a hit, but minus the Resident Evil franchise, the company doesn’t seem to be having much luck as far as the domestic box office goes.  I don’t even know what happened to that ridiculous looking Tarzan animated movie they were working on, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones failed to spawn a franchise and Pompeii didn’t do too well either.  Perhaps a graphic novel adaptation could get the company a winner.

It’s being reported that Constantin is joining forces with Dark Horse Entertainment to turn the graphic novel Polar: Came from the Cold into a feature film.  Hit the jump for more on the endeavor.

THE GAMBLER Red-Band Trailer and Poster: John Goodman Has Some Choice Words of Caution for Mark Wahlberg

by     Posted 15 hours ago

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Paramount Pictures has released the first The Gambler red-band trailer for director Rupert Wyatt’s (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) remake of the 1974 drama.  The film stars Mark Wahlberg as a literature professor whose gambling spirals out of control, affecting both himself and those around him.  This is very much a teaser, as it’s essentially a sweaty onslaught of footage anchored by some excellent, expletive-filled dialogue from John Goodman, but it’s a really solid first look at the film.  Wyatt appears to be tapping into the anxiety and stretched-thin nature of Wahlberg’s lead character with his visual take on the film, and I’ve gotta say it’s really promising stuff.  I look forward to getting a better read on the movie when the theatrical trailer arrives, but for now this is a very swell tease.

Watch the first The Gambler red-band trailer and check out the first poster after the jump.  The film also stars Brie Larson, Jessica Lange, John Goodman, and Michael K. WilliamsThe Gambler opens in limited release on December 19th and expands wide on January 2, 2015.

Tuesday TV Ratings: AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Falls to Another Series Low While THE FLASH Dips

by     Posted 15 hours ago

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TV ratings for Tuesday, October 21st are in.  Here’s a brief rundown:

  • The CW’s The Flash (read Dave’s recap here) was down three tenths from last week’s episode, scoring a 1.7 rating in the 18-49 demo and 3.38 million viewers.  No matter, that’s still a strong performance for The CW, and the network has already ordered a full season.  Supernatural, meanwhile, dipped a tenth to a 0.9 rating and scored 2.10 million viewers.
  • The ratings fall of ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (read Evan Valentine’s recap here) continues as it was down two tenths from last week to a series low 1.5 rating and scored 4.29 million viewers.  Can the promise of the Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer next week turn things around?  Elsewhere on the network, Selfie ticked up to a 1.1 rating and scored 3.81 million viewers, Manhattan Love Story was down two tenths to a 0.7 rating and 2.65 million viewers, and Forever ticked up a tenth to a 1.2 rating and scored 4.8 million viewers.

Hit the jump for the rest of the ratings report for Tuesday, including Person of Interest and Marry Me.

INSIDIOUS: CHAPTER 3 Poster and Trailer Teaser Arrive Prior to Tomorrow’s Official Trailer Release

by     Posted 15 hours ago

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Splitting the Insidious: Chapter 2 narrative between the Lambert family, the material at the hospital and what goes down in The Further kept the film from feeling as refined as the original, but it did prove that there’s much more to the situation that could be worth exploring in a new edition.

We know that the third installment is a prequel and involves Elise (Lin Shaye) trying to help a teenage girl (Stefanie Scott) evade a supernatural entity, but I’m on the lookout for plot points directly related to The Further and the rules established in the previous two films.  Could that come in the film’s first trailer?  We’ll find out soon enough because it’s due to arrive tomorrow at 9am PST.  Hit the jump to check out a new Insidious: Chapter 3 poster and trailer teaser counting down to the official teaser trailer’s big release.  (And yes, I know it sounds ridiculous.)  Insidious: Chapter 3 is due to hit theaters on May 29, 2015 and also stars Dermot Mulroney, Angus Sampson and writer-director Leigh Whannell.

John Carroll Lynch Talks AMERICAN HORROR STORY: FREAK SHOW, Creeping out the Cast and Crew, Scary Clowns, and More

by     Posted 16 hours ago

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The FX series American Horror Story: Freak Show follows a troupe of the strange and unusual in 1952, who are looking to survive as performers amidst the dying world of the American carny experience.  Also in the quiet, sleepy hamlet of Jupiter, Florida is a dark being known as Twisty the Clown (John Carroll Lynch), who savagely threatens the lives of townsfolk and freaks alike, but who also has an innocence that makes it even more disturbing.  The show stars Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Michael Chiklis, Evan Peters, Frances Conroy, Emma Roberts, Denis O’Hare and Finn Wittrock.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, actor John Carroll Lynch talked about how this role was pitched to him, being aware of the deep fear of clowns that many people have, how he creeps out some of the cast and crew when he’s in character, the evolution of Twisty’s look, expressing himself with no dialogue, how much the hair and make-up and costume help him, taking the actual clown side of the character seriously, the license he’s given to go to dark places because he’s in full make-up, that viewers will learn what happened to him and why he is the way he is, the bizarre dynamic between Twisty and Dandy (Wittrock), and how he’d love to work with these actors again.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

John Hawkes Talks LOW DOWN, Working With Elle Fanning, Not Glorifying Heroin, and His Next Film THE DRIFTLESS AREA

by     Posted 17 hours ago

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John Hawkes delivers a superb performance in Low Down as noted jazz pianist Joe Albany who played with musical greats Charlie Parker and Miles Davis but was torn between his musical ambition, his devotion to his teenage daughter (Elle Fanning), and a debilitating heroin addiction.  The bio-pic opening October 24th is directed by experimental filmmaker Jeff Preiss in his feature debut and based on the memoirs of Albany’s daughter Amy-Jo Albany who co-wrote the screenplay with Topper Lilien.  Set in the colorful, seedy world of struggling musicians and artists in 1970’s Hollywood, the film boasts a first-rate cast that also includes Glenn Close, Lena Heady, and Peter Dinklage.

In an exclusive interview, the Oscar nominated actor spoke about how he first heard about the project after meeting with producers Albert Berger and Ron Yerxa, the appeal of the character, his preparation, not wanting to glorify heroin, working with Fanning and Close, his collaboration with Preiss, what he looks for in the roles he chooses, his experiences growing up in a small rural town, when he first knew he wanted to be an actor, his wild ride with a guy who had just robbed a convenience store, and his upcoming projects including the Off Broadway play Lost Lake and film roles in The Driftless Area, Too Late, and Everest.  Check out our interview with John Hawkes after the jump. 

THE WOMAN IN BLACK: ANGEL OF DEATH International Trailer Reveals More Creepy Bumps in the Night at the Eel Marsh House

by     Posted 17 hours ago

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Half the fun of The Woman in Black was seeing what Daniel Radcliffe could do post-Harry Potter so when The Woman in Black: Angel of Death was announced and Radcliffe wasn’t attached, I couldn’t help but think, what’s the point?  Woman in Black is a fine film, but there’s nothing particularly mind blowing about the Eel Marsh legend and, sure enough, the Woman in Black: Angel of Death trailers have failed to impress.  However, we just got a brand new international edition and it actually suggests that the sequel might have some potential.

Whereas the previous promos are rather thin and reliant on jump scares, this one offers up more story details.  The London blitz actually serves as an interesting backdrop and is a believable reason for why anyone would stay at that creepy old house.  Hit the jump to check out The Woman in Black: Angel of Death international trailer for yourself.  The movie stars Phoebe Fox, Helen McCrory and Jeremy Irvine, and is due in theaters on January 20th, 2015.

Entertainment Weekly’s INTO THE WOODS Covers Offer First Look at Johnny Depp’s The Wolf

by     Posted 17 hours ago

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There are stills of Emily Blunt, James Corden, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine and Meryl Streep in Into the Woods and we also got a few solid shots of them in the film’s trailer too, but what about Johnny Depp’s The Wolf?  Depp got a title card in that trailer, but then he just hid behind a tree.  Now it turns out, that was a good thing.

The new edition of Entertainment Weekly puts the spotlight on Rob Marshall’s rendition of the Stephen Sondheim musical with four different collector’s covers and one of them gives us our very first look at Depp in full costume and makeup.  Hit the jump to check out the Into the Woods covers for yourself.  The film also stars Lilla CrawfordMackenzie Mauzy, Daniel HuttlestoneTracey Ullman and Christine Baranski, and is set to hit theaters on December 25th.

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