Jason Bateman Talks Directorial Debut BAD WORDS, the Soundtrack, HORRIBLE BOSSES 2, Shawn Levy’s THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU, and More at TIFF 2013

by     Posted 219 days ago

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One of my favorite films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is Jason Bateman‘s directorial debut Bad WordsAndrew Dodge’s awesome script centers on a high-school drop-out (Bateman) who uses a loophole to compete in an 8th grade spelling bee, enraging teachers and parents alike, but befriending an awkward young contestant along the way.  And while the film could easily be a family friendly, PG movie that plays it safe, I’m happy to report Bateman has crafted a wholly R-rated movie that’s loaded with inappropriate dialogue and hysterical situations.  It also explains why Focus Features quickly snapped it up during an all night bidding war following the world premiere.  Bad Words also stars Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Ben Falcone, Philip Baker Hall and Rohan Chandz. 

The day after the premiere I got to sit down with Bateman for an extended video interview.  He talked about the warm reception for the film, landing distribution, marketing plans, the soundtrack (which is fantastic), working with child actor Rohan Chand, deleted scenes, and more.  In addition, Bateman talked about the Horrible Bosses sequel, the audience perception of The Change-Up, and Shawn Levy‘s This Is Where I Leave You.  Hit the jump to watch.

First Images from LIFE OF CRIME, THE RAILWAY MAN, THIRD PERSON, THE ART OF THE STEAL, and BAD WORDS

by     Posted 268 days ago

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This morning, the Toronto International Film Festival announced its terrific line-up for their Galas and Special Presentation programs.  Among the films with new images and synopses are:

  • Life of Crime (Directed by Daniel Schechter) Starring John Hawkes, Yasiin Bey (a.k.a Mos Def), Jennifer Aniston, Tim Robbins, Isla Fisher, Will Forte, and Mark Boone Jr.
  • The Railway Man (Directed by Jonathan Teplitzky) Starring Colin Firth, Jeremy Irvine, and Nicole Kidman.
  • Third Person (Directed by Paul Haggis) Starring Liam Neeson, Mila Kunis, Adrien Brody, James Franco, Olivia Wilde, Maria Bello, Kim Basinger, and Moran Atias.
  • The Art of the Steal (Directed by Jonathan Sobol) Starring Jay Baruchel, Matt Dillon, Kurt Russell, Terence Stamp, Katheryn Winnick, Chris Diamantopoulos, Kenneth Welsh, and Jason Jones.
  • Bad Words (Directed by Jason Bateman) Starring Jason Bateman, Allison Janney, Phillip Baker Hall, Kathryn Hahn, and Rohan Chand.

Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses.  The 2013 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 5 – 15th.

IDENTITY THIEF Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 268 days ago

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Seth Gordon’s Identity Thief was definitely no Horrible Bosses.  Sure, it was funny and quirky, but to watch this film with the expectations that it will be something equally, if not funnier than Horrible Bosses, will lead to a giant letdown.  Identity Thief stars, Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy, do a superb job at playing these characters to their best of their comical abilities, but there is such thing as something being “too ridiculous” and Identity Thief manages to go there.  Funny?  Yes.  Hilarious?  Not so much.  I was, however, pleasantly surprised by the way the film was able to turn McCarthy’s character from an obnoxious criminal to a relatable and heartwarming troubled woman.  Hit the jump for my review of Identity Thief on Blu-ray.

Netflix in Talks for Another Season of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT

by     Posted 280 days ago

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It appears that the episodic structure of Arrested Development may not be over.  While creator Mitch Hurwitz has said many times that the new run of episodes on Netflix were meant to serve as Act One of a story that would be completed with Act Two and Act Three in an Arrested Development movie, Bloomberg reports that Netflix is currently in negotiations to make another season of the show.  The news comes from producer Brian Grazer himself, who noted that he and his Imagine Entertainment cohorts are “in conversations with [Netflix] to do another.”  Hit the jump for more. 

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT: Season 4 Review

by     Posted 325 days ago

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Was it six years of anticipation for a fourth season of Arrested Development or was it desire?  If it was the former, we saw possibilities beyond the show’s ending.  If it was the latter, we simply didn’t want the show to end, and we would accept it any form.  “Maybe a movie,” Ron Howard suggests at the close of the third season when Maeby (Alia Shawkat) pitches her family’s story as a TV series.  Now the show has returned for a fourth season that is radically different from anything we’ve seen on television (perhaps the closest cousin being the time-travel season on Lost).  What begins as a brilliant new approach to storytelling on television becomes a season that demands a chart to follow the crisscrossing plotlines that begin to get in the way of enjoying the show’s humor.  Thankfully, despite the heavy weight of the show’s ambition, Arrested Development is as funny and clever as past seasons.  But this time, it may be too clever for its own good.

First Trailer for Season 4 of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT

by     Posted 340 days ago

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After seven years and a small case of cancellation, Arrested Development will return in two weeks.  Netflix has released the first trailer for Season 4, and the show looks as hilarious as ever.  As excited as all AD fans are, there was always the fear of “What if the show can’t meet expectations?”  I always felt that Season 3 went out on a high note, and that a fourth season could jeopardize the strong finish.  But judging by this trailer, Arrested Development fans have nothing to fear.  The weirdness, sight gags, wordplay, and more are back.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The show stars Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, Michael Cera, David Cross, Portia de Rossi, Tony Hale, Alia Shawkat, Jeffrey Tambor, and Jessica Walter.  All 15 episodes premiere on Netflix at midnight on May 26th.

Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, David Cross, Portia de Rossi, Alia Shawkat and Jessica Walter Talk ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT and Possibility of a Movie

by     Posted 342 days ago

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Much to the surprise and joy of every Arrested Development fan, the Emmy Award-winning comedy series following the wildly eccentric and entertainingly dysfunctional Bluth family is back with 15 new episodes debuting on Netflix on May 26th.  After having seen the first episode, I can say that the show is as twisted and funny as ever, and feels like it hasn’t missed a beat in the seven years since the last episode aired.  From creator/writer Mitch Hurwitz, the series stars Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, David Cross, Portia de Rossi, Tony Hale, Alia Shawkat, Jeffrey Tambor and Jessica Walter.

During a recent press conference to promote the 15 new episodes, co-stars Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, David Cross, Portia de Rossi, Alia Shawkat and Jessica Walter talked about how great it’s been to reunite with each other, the possibility of a movie still being made, what it was like to return to these roles after so many years, how often fans throw quotes at them when they’re out, how complicated the episodes were to shoot, and just how many scenes the Bluth family is in together.  Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

Jason Bateman in Talks to Voice a Character in New Animated Film for Disney Directed by Byron Howard

by     Posted 349 days ago

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Jason Bateman (Arrested Development) may be lending his voice to character in an upcoming animated feature from Walt Disney Animation.  Directed by Byron Howard (Tangled), the logline on the project is being kept under wraps, but appears to be an animal comedy of some sort.  The picture has no release date at the moment.  This would mark the first feature voice role for Bateman and could be the first solo directing job for Howard, who co-directed both Bolt and Tangled.  Hit the jump for more.

First Clip from New ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT Episodes; Plus 9 New Character Posters

by     Posted 357 days ago

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The first clip from the new batch of Arrested Development episodes has landed online, and it appears that the relationship between Tony Hale’s Buster and Jessica Walter’s Lucille hasn’t changed a bit.  The clip provides a tiny hint as to what Lucille has been up to since the events of the season three finale, but mainly it just showcases the series’ wonderful sense of humor that’s been sorely missing from our lives for far too long.  Additionally, Netflix has released a new batch of character posters for the new episodes that features the entire cast along with some rather familiar taglines.

Hit the jump to check out the clip and posters, and if you missed the EW covers and new images from yesterday, click here.  Netflix will release all 15 new episodes of Arrested Development at once on May 26th.

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT Covers Entertainment Weekly; Plus Buster Visits Army in New Images

by     Posted 358 days ago

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New episodes of Arrested Development are now just a month away (so close yet so far!), and in anticipation of the Bluths’ return, the show’s cast graces the covers of this week’s Entertainment Weekly.  We get a peek at everyone’s favorite dysfunctional family back together again, as three separate covers feature Gob, Michael and George Michael, Tobias, Lindsay and Maeby, and George Sr. and and Lucille respectively.  The publication has also released two new images from the upcoming batch of episodes, which show Tony Hale’s Buster returning to Army and Michael Cera’s George Michael getting his Segway on at what looks to be a college campus.

Hit the jump to check out the new images and EW covers.  15 new episodes of Arrested Development will be released at the same time on Netflix on May 26th.

DISCONNECT Review

by     Posted 1 year, 5 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my review from the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.  Disconnect opens today in limited release.]

Modern technology has radically changed the way we interact socially. Go stand in a line, and I guarantee at least a few people will have whipped out their smartphones and are happily ignoring the world around them. We don’t call anymore; we text as if that were the same as a discussion. As author, psychologist, and MIT professor Sherry Turkle recently noted in a New York Times editorial this past April, “we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection.” Henry Alex Rubin‘s Disconnect ignores this contemporary issue, and sacrifices worthwhile social commentary for mere cautionary tales. Disconnect has all the dramatic weight of a driver’s education video, but then pads its thin plots with three loosely-connected narratives, two of which feature character actions so ludicrous that the movie becomes almost completely disconnected from reality.

Jason Bateman Talks DISCONNECT, Cyber-Bullying, His Feelings about Technology, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 6 days ago

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The dramatic thriller Disconnect shows how ordinary people struggle to find personal connection in today’s world where modern technology is so readily available, and it can both unite and divide us.  While the stories of strangers, neighbors and colleagues collide, the technology that we so often rely upon proves that it can result in unforeseen consequences for those around us.  From first-time narrative feature director Henry-Alex Rubin, the film stars Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, Frank Grillo, Michael Nyqvist, Paula Patton, Andrea Riseborough, Alexander Skarsgard and Max Thieriot.

During a press conference to promote the film’s release, Bateman talked about his attraction to this very dramatic role as a father who can’t find the time to communicate with his family, how he got into the headspace for this character, which scene he was most worried about shooting, how he feels about technology at home, how he handles the issue of cyber-bullying with his own kids, and what he hopes audiences will take away from seeing this film.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

9 Teaser Posters for Season 4 of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT; David Cross and Jason Bateman Talk about the Movie

by     Posted 1 year, 7 days ago

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Nine teaser posters for Season 4 of Arrested Development have been released. The iconography and one-liners are arguably more well-known than the plotlines when it comes to the series.  The show was built on inside jokes, which is probably one of the things that halted new viewership, especially since time-shifting and (legal) digital downloads were still in their infancy.  Now Arrested Development is returning to a brave new world where all of the episodes will be premiering at the same time, but judging by these posters, beloved gags will still get their due.  I especially like how these are all character posters but they don’t feature the actor, and some don’t even have the character’s name.

Hit the jump to check out the posters and the status of the movie according to David Cross and Jason Bateman.  All 15 episodes of Arrested Development season 4 premiere on Netflix on May 26th.

Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day Locked for HORRIBLE BOSSES 2; Jamie Foxx in Negotiations to Return

by     Posted 1 year, 40 days ago

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Aaanndd… they’re back!  Made at around $35 million and grossing north of $209 million worldwide, it’s no joke calling Seth Gordon‘s 2011 workplace comedy Horrible Bosses a hit.  Starring Jason BatemanCharlie Day and Jason Sudikis as down-trodden buds who plot to kill their maniacal bosses, studio New Line justifiably wanted a sequel despite the premise feeling somewhat sequel proof.  Well, when there’s a will, there’s a way as the principal cast will return for Horrible Bosses 2.  Though when that will involves hefty sums of money for the film’s stars, sometimes everyone involved has to wait.  And now, after more than a half a year of negotiations things look bright for more “boss-bashing.”  Hit the jump for more.

Trailer and Poster for DISCONNECT Starring Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, and Paula Patton

by     Posted 1 year, 47 days ago

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LD Entertainment has released the trailer and poster for the drama Disconnect.  The film follows three loosely connected stories: one relates to online bullying, another deals with identity theft, and the third is about a reporter trying to save a young man who does sex-cam shows.  I caught the film at TIFF, and thought it was a cheap PSA that wasted the opportunity to show the complexities of online connection in the 21st century.  If you’re still interested in the film, the trailer shows way too much, and takes you deep into the third act.

And if all of that doesn’t bother you, hit the jump to check out the trailer.  The film stars Jason Bateman, Hope Davis, Frank Grillo, Michael Nyqvist, Paula Patton, Andrea Riseborough, Alexander Skarsgard, and Max ThieriotDisconnect opens in limited release on April 12th.

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