Opening tomorrow director Brian Helgeland’s Jackie Robinson biopic 42. Starring Chadwick Boseman in the lead role, 42 tells the story of Robinson, the first player to break Major League Baseball’s color barrier by signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Harrison Ford co-stars as Branch Rickey, the MLB exec who signed Robinson into the minors and ushered him along to the pros. 42 also stars Nicole Beharie, T.R. Knight, Christopher Meloni and Toby Huss. For more on the film, here’s the trailer, 45 images, 7 clips, and everything we’ve posted.
With Legendary Pictures producing 42, I recently landed an exclusive interview with Legendary’s CEO Thomas Tull. During our wide ranging interview we talked about the films authenticity, Ford’s performance, how he got involved with the project, how baseball’s status as an American pastime influenced the budget (might be a tough sell in other parts of the world), why they decided to focus on only two years of Robinson’s life, how much of the film was “Hollywoodized,” and a lot more. In addition, we also talked about his Oscar worthy performance as the Gotham Rouges owner in The Dark Knight Rises, the coolest movie swag he’s got in his office, Nerdist Industries, Godzilla, Pacific Rim, his reaction to watching Man of Steel, his relationship with Guillermo del Toro, future projects, and more.
Will there ever be a great movie based on a video game?* I have my doubts. The problem is two-fold: if you stray too far from the material, fans get upset. If you’re too faithful, then you’ve basically recreated the game except the interactive aspect has been removed. But it’s important to keep in mind that most of the videogame movies we’ve seen so far are protagonist-based: Mario, Lara Croft, the Prince of Persia, etc. And then there are movies like Silent Hill and Wing Commander that just aren’t very good. But what if you took a talented director like Duncan Jones (Moon) and let him build a story out of a gigantic video game world? Legendary Pictures plans to do just that by having him adapt World of Warcraft.
Steve recently interviewed Legendary Pictures CEO Thomas Tull, who explained how WoW is going to be a successful video game movie. He also talked about the studio’s other upcoming projects including movies from Michael Mann and the directors of Kon-Tiki. Hit the jump for more, and click on the respective links for what Tull had to say about Man of Steel and Pacific Rim/Godzilla.
As I have said many times, while this summer is loaded with huge movies like Iron Man 3, Fast and Furious 6, Pacific Rim, Star Trek Into Darkness, World War Z, White House Down, and so many others, the one at the top of my list is Zack Snyder‘s Man of Steel. Written by Davis S. Goyer and produced by Christopher Nolan, I really believe this is the Superman film we’ve been waiting for and everything I’ve seen and learned tells me it’s going to be one hell of a ride. In addition, I’ve spoken to a few people that have seen the film and everyone is raving. June 14th cannot arrive soon enough.
A few weeks ago I spoke to Goyer for his new Starz show Da Vinci’s Demons, and asked for his reaction to seeing the film for the first time and if it was everything he hoped it would be. He told me, “Yes, yes. I was very happy.” In addition to Goyer, I recently spoke to Legenday Pictures CEO Thomas Tull for their new film 42. With Legendary producing Man of Steel with Warner Bros. I knew Tull must have also seen the film, so I also asked his reaction. He told me, “It’s the Superman movie I’ve always wanted to see.” Hit the jump for more.
Led by Thomas Tull, Legendary Pictures has co-produced some great films including The Dark Knight Trilogy, 300, Observe and Report, Watchmen, Inception, The Town, The Hangover, and Where the Wild Things Are. And they aren’t slowing down. In 2013 alone they’ve got Pacific Rim, 300: Rise of an Empire, Man of Steel, Seventh Son, 42, and The Hangover Part 3. And this list doesn’t include all the other cool projects they’re currently developing.
With 42 arriving in theaters this weekend, I landed an exclusive interview with Tull where we discussed a wide variety of subjects. However, rather than post the entire conversation today, I’ll be offering selected parts over the next few days with the full interview online later this week. Up first, we discuss Legendary’s remake of Godzilla, the first test screening of Pacific Rim, and why they’re making two really big monster movies at the same time. Hit the jump for more.
Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures announced today that filming has begun in Vancouver on director Gareth Edwards’ (Monster) new Godzilla film. Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, and Juliette Binoche lead a cast that also includes David Strathairn and Bryan Cranson. Additionally, the press release notes that Ken Watanabe has now joined the film as well. Though plot details are firmly under wraps, we know from the film’s brief Comic-Con appearance last year that Edwards is taking a grounded, realistic approach to the classic monster. His take attempts to answer the question, “What would it be like if all of this really happened?”
Edwards is working from a screenplay by Max Borenstein, Frank Darabont, and Dave Callaham. Hit the jump to read the full press release. Godzilla opens in 3D on May 16, 2014.
Though Chris Hemsworth was geared up and ready to shoot Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi pic Robopocalypse as his next film, The Beard’s recent decision to postpone that project for a few months left a hole in the actor’s schedule. It appears that that hole has now been filled, as director Michael Mann has boarded an untitled thriller at Legendary Pictures with Hemsworth attached to star. Plot details are thin, but the story apparently takes place in the world of cyber threats and attacks. Hit the jump for more.
A major development is taking place on the long-in-the-works feature film adaptation of the popular video game World of Warcraft. The project has been in the works for a number of years, with Sam Raimi attached to direct for quite some time. Raimi finally dropped off last summer so that he could focus full-time on Oz the Great and Powerful, and Legendary Pictures subsequently brought on screenwriter Charles Leavitt (Blood Diamond) to rewrite the screenplay, which was initially penned by Robert Rodat (Saving Private Ryan). Now the studio is getting serious about making the movie happen, as Moon and Source Code director Duncan Jones has been tapped to take the helm for a planned fall 2013 production start. Hit the jump for more.
[Update: The Tracking Board [via Bleeding Cool] hears that Warner Bros. wants Johnny Depp to star. Tracking boards are not the most reliable source, so treat this as a rumor for now as you note that Depp’s name is being mentioned in certain circles that chase such insider info. More official casting reports should arrive soon.]
It’s apparently “Godzilla reboot news day.” This morning we learned that Frank Darabont will be doing a final rewrite on the script for director Gareth Edwards’ reboot of Godzilla, along with the news that two of the film’s producers are battling Legendary Pictures to stay onboard the project. We actually know very little about the redo beyond the fact that Edwards is tackling Godzilla with a grounded, realistic tone (ie. what would it be like if this monster actually appeared in real life and started terrorizing cities?), but today word has surfaced concerning the film’s firm production start date, shooting locations, and which actors the studio and Edwards are looking at to take on the lead role. Hit the jump for Godzilla details galore.
The release of Guillermo del Toro’s first directorial feature since 2008’s Hellboy II is still nearly 8 months away, but he’s already making a commitment for his post-Pacific Rim feature. During a recent phone interview, del Toro told Steve that he had discussed a Pacific Rim sequel with the folks at Legendary but he was adamant about not making that follow-up his next film, noting that he wants to do something “in a different genre that’s not so big.” That genre, it appears, is haunted house films, as del Toro is set to make the ghost story Crimson Peak his next movie. Hit the jump for much more.
Though we recently learned that Sam Raimi is no longer involved with the World of Warcraft film, Legendary Entertainment is still very much moving full speed ahead with the project. Variety reports that Blood Diamond screenwriter Charles Leavitt has been brought in to rewrite the script, which was originally drafted by Robert Rodat (Saving Private Ryan). Apparently the studio was keen on Leavitt’s take on the material, “which could move the project forward in the coming months.” Raimi had to vacate the director’s chair due to his commitments to Oz the Great and Powerful, but it’s clear that Legendary is eager to finally get this thing in front of cameras. With Leavitt on the script, the search now turns to finding a director.
Leavitt recently wrote the upcoming fantasy pic The Seventh Son, starring Jeff Bridges, for Legendary so he has a relationship with the studio. He also penned K-PAX and The Mighty. Still no word on exactly how Legendary plans on adapting the massive game for the big screen, but their upcoming slate of Pacific Rim, Man of Steel, and the Godzilla remake inspires hope that they’ve got a quality tentpole on their hands.
If you’re a fan of director Guillermo del Toro, you’re about to be very happy. I recently sat down with the filmmaker for an epic hour-long video interview and every day this week I’ll be posting part of it. Over the course of sixty minutes we talked about his past projects, Pacific Rim, what he has coming up, and everything in between. Trust me, this is one of those special interviews that you’re all going to love.
In this first part del Toro talks about how their amazing Comic-Con presentation in Hall H came together (it was the best Hall H presentation I’ve ever seen), when the teaser trailer will get released, how he got involved with Pacific Rim, what it’s like to work for Legendary Pictures and Thomas Tull, what kind of notes he got from the studio, what changed during production, the physical nature of the shoot, and so much more. In addition, while you often hear about studios interfering with a director, del Toro said that he once got a note from Tull that said, “can you make it more kick-ass?” Hit the jump to watch and check back tomorrow night for part two.
Saturday is a massive day in Hall H already with Django Unchained, The Hobbit, Pacific Rim, Man of Steel, and the Marvel panel, but Legendary had one more surprise in store for fans right after the Pacific Rim panel ended. As Guillermo del Toro and the cast of Pacific Rim walked off the stage, Legendary head Thomas Tull announced that he had one more thing to show. That “one more thing” was a genuinely fantastic teaser for the upcoming Godzilla remake from director Gareth Edwards. Hit the jump for my recap along with a Godzilla teaser poster.
If you’re at Comic-Con this week, you’re going to want to try and force your way to the Legendary Pictures booth (#3920) for some of the cool stuff they have going on. The booth will feature a “Mini Tumbler” from The Dark Knight Rises (which I suppose is the perfect urban assault vehicle for a Mini Batman), two never-before-seen costumes from Guillermo Del Toro‘s monsters-vs-giant-robots action flick Pacific Rim, and artwork from the Superman reboot, Man of Steel. Coolest of all, Del Toro will be doing a signing at the booth on Friday.
Legendary Pictures will do its panel for Pacific Rim and Man of Steel along with Warner Bros.’ The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey this Saturday at 2:30pm in Hall H.
The period adventure pic Here There Be Monsters is one of those incredibly cool-sounding projects that has been lingering in development hell for years. Robert Zemeckis was first eyeing the film as a return to live-action, then Brad Bird (The Incredibles) flirted with the pic once Zemeckis passed. Now it appears that Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures have decided to go with a lesser known director to take the helm: Jaume Collet-Serra. The director was previously behind the horror feature Orphan and the Liam Neeson thriller Unknown, but he’s become quite popular as of late. In addition to being attached to the live-action adaptation of Akira, Collet-Serra is also prepping a re-imaging of the Dracula story, Harker, with Russell Crowe.
Hit the jump for more on Here There Be Monsters, including the possible casting of Bradley Cooper.
Legendary Pictures has picked up Martin Helgeland‘s spec script for Slayer. Per THR, “Slayer is described as a modern-day story about a young doctor whose estranged father dies and he finds out the old man was a dragon and creature slayer. The doctor must become a slayer too.” What a terrible profession switch. Med school is extensive and ridiculously expensive, and when you finally get to be a doctor, you learn that you now have to slay dragons. There’s no residency for that profession.
It’s been a while since we’ve had a live-action dragon story. They’re part of Game of Thrones, but when it comes to feature films, I believe the last major one was Reign of Fire. I’m always up for some good, old-fashioned dragon hunting since I love the blend of a gigantic, ancient creature battling against puny humans. Of course, all dragons cower in fear when faced with a medical degree. [Artist credit: Mauricio Herrara]