In the action thriller Taken 2, from director Olivier Megaton and co-screenwriters Luc Besson (who’s also a producer on the film) and Robert Mark Kamen, Liam Neeson returns as Bryan Mills, the retired CIA agent who stopped at nothing to save his abducted daughter (Maggie Grace). Two years later, the family of those responsible are now seeking their own vengeance, this time on his ex-wife Lenore (Famke Janssen), with whom Bryan is hoping to reconcile.
During this recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, actress Famke Janssen talked about the surprise global success of the first film, her immediate reaction upon hearing about the sequel, working with a new director this time, and the experience of shooting in Istanbul. She also talked about taking three years away from acting to dedicate herself to her full-length feature debut as a writer/director, called Bringing Up Bobby, going through three hours of make-up to play a witch in Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, what attracted her to the Eli Roth Netflix series Hemlock Grove, and the next film she’s hoping to direct. Check out what she had to say after the jump.
Premiering at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival was the natural disaster thriller, Aftershock. Co-written by star Eli Roth and director Nicolas Lopez, Aftershock centers on a group of young partygoers in Chile who find themselves surrounded by death and destruction when a violent earthquake brings the town down around them. You can watch some footage here. Also, Dimension just picked up the rights to Aftershock, so you can expect to see the film for yourself sometime next year.
Before the world premiere, I sat down with Roth and Lopez for an extended interview. They talked about premiering at TIFF, how they ended up working together, the genesis of Aftershock and how the original idea was to make a sci-fi movie, being distributed by Dimension, and a lot more. In addition, with Roth and Lopez involved in a number of other projects, I got updates on Clown, The Green Inferno, and RZA’s The Man With the Iron Fists which Roth called a “hip hop kung fu Avengers” and who did the soundtrack. Hit the jump to watch the interview.
Playing as part of the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival’s Midnight Madness run is the natural disaster thriller, Aftershock. Co-written by star Eli Roth and director Nicolas Lopez, Aftershock centers on a group of young partygoers in Chile who find themselves surrounded by death and destruction when a violent earthquake brings the town down around them. In this exclusive first clip, we get a look at what appears to be during the initial quake, its destruction taking out dancers in a club Final Destination-style. Hit the jump to check it out!
The Toronto Film Festival only just got underway yesterday, but Dimension Films has already made a fairly major acquisition. Per Deadline, Bob Weinstein’s genre studio is nearing a deal to distribute two projects produced by Hostel director Eli Roth: Aftershock and Clown. Roth co-wrote and also stars in Aftershock, which is an earthquake thriller that’s set to screen at the festival.
Clown hasn’t yet begun production, but the film actually spawned from an incredibly creepy fan-made trailer that went viral and piqued Roth’s interest. The story centers on a loving father who dons a clown outfit and make-up to perform at his son’s sixth birthday, only to later discover the costume — red nose and wig included — will not come off. The distribution deals apparently guarantee a wide release for each film, so this is big news for Roth. Hit the jump to watch the trailer for Clown.
Grindhouse ultimately flopped at the box office, yet the legacy may prevail through all the movies it launched. Already the fake trailers for Machete and Hobo with a Shotgun have been turned into full-length feature films. Director Eli Roth promises that his trailer for Thanksgiving is next in line to expand to a movie. Roth and his writing partner Jeff Rundell have scripted a “very extensive treatment.” They recruited Jon Watts and Christopher D. Ford to work on the screenplay based on their impressive work on the script for Clown, a horror film that Roth is producing. Roth expects to produce a Thanksgiving screenplay soon.
Hit the jump to see what Roth had to say about the development process.
The Toronto International Film Festival announced lineups for a few more 2012 programs today, and we’ve got a batch of new images from films that will be screening as part of the Midnight Madness series. We’ve seen a couple of these images before, but now they’re all in glorious high-resolution. Briefly:
- Dredd (Directed by Pete Travis) Starring Karl Urban, Lena Headey, and Olivia Thirlby.
- The Lords of Salem (Directed by Rob Zombie) Starring Sheri Moon Zombie, Clint Howard, and Sid Haig.
- Aftershock (Directed by Nicolas Lopez) Starring Eli Roth, Andrea Osvart, Ariel Levy, and Selena Gomez.
- Hellbenders (Directed by J.T. Petty) Starring Clancy Brown, Clifton Collins Jr., Robyn Rikoon, and Andre Royo
Hit the jump to check out images and synopses for these films. The 2012 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 6 – 16th.
Hey, everyone: remember that trailer for The Man with the Iron Fists? The one with all the gory Kung Fu hijinks, murderous sex workers and other EYE-popping spectacle? Of course you do. Most of us pledged to lay EYEs on the film as soon as Russell Crowe inexplicably (but quite awesomely) appeared as a cowboy. Well, get out your date-circling Sharpie, because we’ve gotten word that Universal is EYEing a November 2, 2012 release date for its grindhousey martial arts epic. The directorial debut of The Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA, Fists sees a clan dispute in feudal China erupting into an all-out melee between some truly badass warriors. Co-written by Eli Roth (Hostel) and produced by Quentin Tarantino, it’s graced with an eclectic international cast led by RZA himself in the title role, as well as Lucy Liu, Jamie Chung, Pam Grier, Rick Yune, Cung Le, Daniel Wu, Byron Mann and former WWE wrestler Dave Bautista.
While the promising flick is currently slated for early November, do keep an EYE on local listings in case it’s violently dislodged and sent careening across the schedule. Hit the jump to watch the film’s trailer.
The Dracula re-imagining Harker looks like it’s finally moving forward, but a director change has been made. In February of 2011, Orphan director Jaume Collet-Serra came aboard to helm the Warner Bros. pic, which follows Scotland Yard detective Jonathan Harker as he tries to track down that pesky Dracula. Russell Crowe joined the project this past February, but now Eli Roth looks to be making a return to the director’s chair as he’s poised to take over from Collet-Serra. Hit the jump for on Roth’s bloody return to the big screen.
The first red-band trailer for The Man with the Iron Fists has landed online, and it looks exactly like you’d expect a kung fu movie produced by Quentin Tarantino, written by RZA and Eli Roth, and starring Russell Crowe to look. The movie takes place in feudal China and centers on a small village’s weapon-maker who must defend its peoples. RZA stars in the film alongside Crowe and Lucy Liu, and this trailer is understandably a bit crazy. There’s lots of violence, blood that flows like fountains, colorful graphic flourishes, and gouging eyeballs. What more could you possibly ask for?
Hit the jump to watch the trailer and check out the film’s poster. The film is expected to be released sometime later this year.
By now, most Quentin Tarantino fans are aware of the connections interlaced throughout all of his films. John Travolta’s Vincent Vega in Pulp Fiction is the brother of Michael Madsen’s Vic Vega in Reservoir Dogs, Harvey Keitel’s Mr. White worked with Alabama from True Romance, the plot basis for Kill Bill is described as the synopsis for a TV series in Pulp Fiction, etc.
Now the epiphany that Eli Roth’s character of Donny Donowitz aka “The Bear Jew” in Inglourious Basterds is the father of the movie producer Lee Donowitz in True Romance has inspired a truly mind-blowing theory that the rest of the films (chronologically speaking) in Tarantino’s filmography take place in a world where [Inglorious Basterds spoiler] World War II came to an end when Adolf Hitler was brutally murdered in a movie theater by the Basterds. Hit the jump for more.
Carlos star Edgar Ramirez was on the shortlist of possible replacements for Benicio Del Toro when the actor dropped out of J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek sequel, but the role ultimately went to Benedict Cumberbatch. Now the much buzzed-about star has landed the lead in the next effort from Donnie Darko director Richard Kelly. Variety reports that Ramirez will star in Kelly’s Corpus Christi, a thriller set in 2014 that finds the actor playing an Iraqi war veteran with severe post-traumatic stress disorder. The character forges a dangerous alliance with a wealthy industrialist in Texas. The film is said to be a departure for Kelly as it has a more traditional narrative than his past features.
Eli Roth and Robert Rodriguez are producing the pic, which will start shooting on location in Austin this July. Kelly followed-up the well received Donnie Darko with the confusing Southland Tales, which of course was followed by the disappointing sci-fi thriller The Box. While I’m dismayed that we haven’t seen anything from Kelly that matches up to the wonder and darkness of Darko, I’m intrigued to see him take on a more straightforward story. Ramirez is currently filming Kathryn Bigelow’s action drama Zero Dark Thirty which centers on the hunt for Osama Bin Laden, and he’ll next be seen in the sequel Wrath of the Titans as Ares.
One of the two Cabin Fever prequels is almost ready to shoot, as director Kaare Andrews (Altitude) is in final talks to helm the project. The first prequel, Cabin Fever: Patient Zero will trace the roots of the deadly virus witnessed in the 2002 original directed by Eli Roth. The plot will follow passengers aboard a cruise ship in the Caribbean as they deal with an outbreak of the virus following a collision with an abandoned research vessel. Andrews will direct from a screenplay by Jake Wade Wall (The Hitcher) and filming will take place in the Dominican Republic. Hit the jump for more.
We’ve got a bunch of new images for you from the following projects:
- Safe, starring Jason Statham, opens April 27th.
- Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, starring Benjamin Walker, opens June 22nd.
- Casa de mi Padre, starring Will Ferrell, opens March 16th.
- Aftershock, starring Eli Roth, opens next year.
- Byzantium, starring Saoirse Ronan and Gemma Arterton, opens later this year.
- The Lords of Salem, from writer/director Rob Zombie, opens later this year.
- The Croods, starring Ryan Reynolds, Emma Stone and Nicolas Cage, opens March 22nd of 2013.
Hit the jump to check them out.
As the beginning of January saw the box office smash, and subsequent fall, of the found-footage exorcism pic The Devil Inside, the sequel to another film in the “found-footage exorcism movie” genre is moving full speed ahead. We first heard movement on the follow-up to 2010’s The Last Exorcism last August, but now the sequel has a director, star, and new rating. Ed Gass-Donnelly (This Beautiful City) will direct the untitled sequel, which begins production next month in New Orleans, and instead of sticking with the original’s PG-13 rating, the sequel will be going R. Hit the jump for story details, and to find out what’s behind the rating switch.
With Netflix taking on original programming through their streaming service for the anticipated return of Arrested Development and a new series from David Fincher and Kevin Spacey called House of Cards, the DVD mailing and online streaming outlet is really making a stride to compete with cable television providers. Their most recent effort comes in the form of a horror series as Deadline reports Netflix is currently negotiating with Gaumont International Television for a 13-episode horror series called Hemlock Grove backed by Hostel mastermind Eli Roth. The series is based on an upcoming horror novel of the same name by Brian McGreevy the series is said to be set against the backdrop of our darkest myths, adolescent deceptions, ravenous relationships and rumors of a werewolf lurking about and aims to reimagine everything it means to be a monster as reflected in the struggle to be human. More after the jump.