First Look at DreamWorks Animation’s B.O.O.: BUREAU OF OTHERWORLDLY OPERATIONS

by     Posted One week ago

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I’ve got a soft spot for cute, pet-like animated characters so when news first broke that DreamWorks Animation was making a movie about a ghost who needs to attend ghost school in order to become a better scarer, I was hooked.  However, that was a few years ago and since, the narrative and title of Boo U has changed.

Now we’ve got B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations on the way and it tells the story of a pair of ghosts who go to work for the B.O.O., an organization dedicated to protecting humans from evil spirits.  The scenario still sounds fun and also has Seth RogenMelissa McCarthyRashida JonesOctavia Spencer, Matt Bomer and Bill Murray leading the voice cast, but the very first look at the characters just surfaced and it’s not really what I was hoping for.  Hit the jump to check it out.  B.O.O. is scheduled for a June 5, 2015 release.

ST. VINCENT Clip Features Bill Murray Boozing it Up While Exploiting Child Labor

by     Posted 17 days ago

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The Toronto International Film Festival is in full swing now and that’s where Theodore Melfi’s feature directorial debut, St. Vincent, will be having its world premiere this evening.  You’ve seen a trailer for the film along with some images, but now we have our first clip from the movie.  I like it.  Bill Murray seems like he’s in nice, subdued form and it’s a relief to see Melissa McCarthy playing a real person after a string of successful caricatures.

St. Vincent features Bill Murray as Vincent, Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) and Oliver’s (Jaeden Lieberher) retired neighbor with a drinking problem, bad attitude and no money in his bank account.  When Maggie gets stuck working long hours, she lets Vincent watch Oliver while she’s gone, giving him a chance to make a quick buck.  Hit the jump to check out the clip.  The film also stars Chris O’Dowd and Naomi Watts.  It’s set to screen at TIFF tonight and will begin its theatrical run on October 14th.

ST. VINCENT Images Show Off Bill Murray’s Unusual Babysitting Techniques

by     Posted 32 days ago

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Theodore Melfi’s feature directorial debut, St. Vincent, is just about two weeks away from making its world premiere at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.  We’ve already got a trailer and a small handful of images, but now there’s three more stills from the film to go along with them.

St. Vincent features Bill Murray as Vincent, Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) and Oliver’s (Jaeden Lieberher) retired neighbor with a drinking problem, bad attitude and no money in his bank account.  When Maggie gets stuck working long hours, she lets Vincent watch Oliver while she’s gone, giving him a chance to make a quick buck.  Hit the jump to check out those new stills to get a sense of what babysitting means to Vincent.  The film also stars Chris O’Dowd and Naomi Watts.  It’s set to screen at TIFF on September 5th and will begin its theatrical run on October 14th.

TIFF 2014 Adds James Franco’s THE SOUND AND THE FURY, ST. VINCENT Starring Bill Murray, Conversations with Denzel Washington, Robert Duvall and More

by     Posted 34 days ago

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The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival lineup is complete!  With the event now just a little over two weeks away, the Discovery Program, the Kids Program and additional selections for other festival sections have been announced.  James Franco’s The Sound and the Fury will have its North American premiere and the Bill Murray-starrer, St. Vincent, will get a world premiere in the Special Presentations section, ’71 featuring Jack O’Connell will play in the Discovery Program and Martin Scorsese’s The 50 Year Argument will screen in the Mavericks Program, just to name a few.

On top of that, Mavericks is now also loaded with iconic talent set to take part in discussions including Denzel Washington, Antoine Fuqua, Juliette Binoche, Robert Duvall and more.  Hit the jump to check out all of the new additions to the TIFF lineup.

Disney’s THE JUNGLE BOOK Adds Bill Murray; Warner Bros Version Gets a Release Date and New Title

by     Posted 52 days ago

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The October 9, 2015 release of Disney’s The Jungle Book isn’t all that far away, so the studio’s been casting up like crazy lately.  In the past month alone, the production has added Ben Kinglsey, Neel Sethi, Christopher Walken and Giancarlo Esposito to the line-up, and now they’ve got yet another new addition to share – Bill Murray as Baloo.  Sethi’s Mowgli will be the only actor seen on screen in the film, but he’ll be joined by a slew of CG characters including Walken as King Louie, Esposito as Akela, Kingsley as Bagheera, Lupita Nyong’o as Raksha, Idris Elba as Shere Khan and Scarlett Johansson as Kaa in addition to Murray.

We’ve also got some movement on Warner Bros. Pictures’ rendition of The Jungle Book, which is now titled Jungle Book: Origins.  The Andy Serkis-directed rendition is scheduled to make its way into theaters on October 21, 2016, almost exactly a year after the Disney film.  Hit the jump for more.

First ROCK THE KASBAH Image From The Film’s Set Shows Off All-Star cast

by     Posted 54 days ago

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It looks like we now have our first image from the set of director Barry Levinson’s new movie Rock the Kasbah.  In the film Bill Murray stars a music manager who goes on the USO tour to Afghanistan with his last remaining client.  Once there, “he finds himself abandoned, penniless and without his passport and discovers a young girl with an extraordinary voice who stows away with him back to Kabul to compete on the popular television show The Afghan Star, Afghanistan’s equivalent of American Idol.”

Rock the Kasbah also stars Kate Hudson, Bruce Willis, Danny McBride, Zooey Deschanel and Scott CaanMitch Glazer (The Recruit) wrote the script.  I really like the idea of a $20 Million budget comedy with an original scenario and a cast like that.  It feels like the kind of mid-budget comedies Hollywood made up until 2008 or so.  It’s sort of a shame that the kind of material that used to be considered a mainstream “popcorn flick” would practically be considered limited-release/VOD film in this current climate.  I’m glad this film is getting better treatment (at least on the budget side of things).  Hit the jump for a better look at the Rock the Kasbah image.  Here’s hoping we hear more from Open Road on this one soon.

We Came, We Saw, We Kicked Its Ass in the GHOSTBUSTERS Re-Release Trailer

by     Posted 73 days ago

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Sony has released a Ghostbusters re-release trailer for the film’s 30th anniversary.  The Labor Day weekend is notoriously slow at the box office, but Sony is making a smart move to capitalize on the soft competition by bringing the beloved comedy back to theaters for one week only.  If you’ve never seen Ghostbusters on the big screen before or if you’re a fan that wants to see it in a 4K restoration, then you’ll want to make time for this re-release.

Hit the jump to check out the Ghostbusters re-release trailer.  The 4K restoration will be released on August 29th.

ST. VINCENT Trailer: Bill Murray Makes an Unlikely Friend

by     Posted 83 days ago

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The Weinstein Company has released the first St. Vincent trailer for writer/director Theodore Melfi’s upcoming dramedy.  Bill Murray stars as a curmudgeonly, misanthropic veteran who begrudgingly agrees to look after his divorced neighbor’s (Melissa McCarthy) young boy while she’s at work, making an unlikely new friend in the process.  The film looks like a solid vehicle for Murray to do his thing, and I’m definitely interested in seeing how McCarthy handles a more dramatic role.  The pic was a heavily sought-after item in development, and with a fall release date, it’s possible The Weinstein Company could be going after some awards love for Murray and/or McCarthy.

Hit the jump to watch the first St. Vincent trailer.  The film opens in theaters on October 14th and also stars Chris O’Dowd and Naomi Watts.

THE LIFE AQUATIC WITH STEVE ZISSOU and RED RIVER Criterion Blu-ray Reviews

by     Posted 99 days ago

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The Criterion Collection has issued both The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and Red River recently, and though the two would seemingly have little in common, it turns out there are a number of parallels.  Both films begin with the main character losing someone close to them in a way that drives the narrative, both follow a driven and arrogant man who needs to see the error of his ways, both deal with great adventure, both deal with a father/son relationship, and both conclude with the main character coming face to face with their supposed enemy, only to realize violence may not be the answer.  Bill Murray and Owen Wilson star in the Aquatic for Wes Anderson, while John Wayne and Montgomery Clift star in Red River for Howard Hawks.  My review of both The Life Aquatic on Blu-ray and Red River follows after the jump. 

Watch: Wes Anderson, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, and Willem Dafoe Discuss the Struggles of Making THE LIFE AQUATIC in Criterion Clip

by     Posted 124 days ago

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Filmmaker Wes Anderson’s 2004 film The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou gets the Criterion Collection Blu-ray treatment next week, and in anticipation of the release, an online-exclusive clip called “Bittersweet Remembrances” has been released online.  The extra is a retrospective piece likely filmed during the Grand Budapest Hotel press tour that has Anderson, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, and Willem Dafoe reflecting on the struggles involved with making the ambitious picture.  If seeing the team candidly discuss the making of the film wasn’t enough, Anderson and Goldblum also spend a good deal of the clip debating the correct pronunciation of the word “wont”.  Though not as polished as some of Anderson’s other films, The Life Aquatic has its charms and I’m eager to revisit the pic in pristine HD thanks to Criterion’s new release.

Hit the jump to watch the Life Aquatic clip.  The Criterion Collection Blu-ray will be released on May 27th.

FANTASTIC MR. FOX Criterion Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 176 days ago

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Few filmmakers are better suited to the world of stop-motion animation than Wes Anderson.  The director has fine-tuned his visual aesthetic over the course of his career, bringing quick and stable camera movements, gorgeous set designs, and specific yet vibrant color palettes to the forefront of his signature style.  After a swell run films that made him one of the most exciting directors in the business, Anderson expanded his scope to the sea (Life Aquatic) and international locales (Darjeeling Limited) before diving into the world of stop-motion animation for his 2009 film Fantastic Mr. Fox.

The result is a highlight of an already impressive career, and the impeccable Roald Dahl adaptation is finally a part of the Criterion Collection.  Hit the jump for my Fantastic Mr. Fox Blu-ray review.

Full List of Oscar Presenters Announced; Includes Daniel Day-Lewis, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Lawrence, Anna Kendrick, and Michael B. Jordan

by     Posted 210 days ago

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After a slow roll-out of announcements that began a few weeks ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has unveiled the full list of presenters for the upcoming 86th Academy Awards ceremony.  As expected, there are plenty of previous winners poised to make appearances, including all four of last year’s acting winners (Daniel Day-Lewis, Jennifer Lawrence, Christoph Waltz, and Anne Hathaway), as well as some members of “young Hollywood” to appeal to the younger viewers (Anna Kendrick, Michael B. Jordan, Emma Watson, Zac Efron, Channing Tatum).  On the “legends” side of things, we can also look forward to seeing presentations from Sidney Poitier and Bill Murray.

Hit the jump to take a look at the full list of presenters, and if you missed our latest Oscar-themed episode of our podcast The Collision, click here.  The Oscars will air on ABC this Sunday, March 2nd.

Bill Murray Talks THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL, His Working Relationship with Wes Anderson, His Career, SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, and More

by     Posted 220 days ago

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I love everything about Wes Anderson movies.  From the way he creates unique worlds to the unusual characters that occupy the screen, Anderson is a one-of-a-kind filmmaker that always makes something special.  His newest film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, just premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and it continues his streak of making exceptional films.  The story mostly takes place in early 20th-century and revolves around the goings-on at a famous European hotel where a legendary concierge (Ralph Fiennes) mentors a young employee (Tony Revolori) against the backdrop of a changing continent.  The film also stars Saoirse RonanBill MurrayF. Murray AbrahamEdward NortonMathieu AmalricAdrien BrodyWillem DafoeLea SeydouxJeff GoldblumJason SchwarztmanJude LawTilda SwintonHarvey KeitelTom Wilkinson, and Owen Wilson.  For more on the film, here’s all our previous coverage.

The day after the world premiere, I participated in a great roundtable interview with Bill Murray in Berlin.  He talked about what it was like to make the film on location in Europe, collaborating with Wes Anderson, the dialogue, whether his process as an actor has changed over time, and more.  In addition, he told some great stories about making Rushmore, his thoughts on Saturday Night Live and Bill Hader, why he quit acting for awhile after making Broken Flowers, and future projects.  Hit the jump for what he had to say.  The Grand Budapest Hotel opens March 7th.

Excellent Criterion Collection Trailer for Wes Anderson’s FANTASTIC MR. FOX

by     Posted 224 days ago

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Wes Anderson has made many good films over the course of his career, but Fantastic Mr. Fox is among his best.  The 2009 stop-motion animated adaptation of Roald Dahl’s childrens book is an absolute delight from start to finish, and it’s finally getting a proper Criterion Collection release next week.  In anticipation of the Blu-ray/DVD dual format release, Criterion has put together a swell new trailer that offers a peek at some of the behind-the-scenes material that will be included on the Criterion disc.  The director-approved release includes the film’s digital master as well as a host of extras, including audio commentary, footage of the actors voicing the characters, an hour-long documentary about Dahl, and much more.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer and to see the full list of extras included on the Blu-ray, and click here to pre-order the disc.  Fantastic Mr. Fox Criterion Collection Blu-ray/DVD will be available starting February 18th.

THE MONUMENTS MEN Review

by     Posted 228 days ago

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In his past films, George Clooney has shown himself to be surprisingly deft at working with genre and mood.  Confessions of a Dangerous Mind is a stunning directorial debut that melds comedy, paranoia, tragedy, and drama, and his following works all have a smart, sensible core (although I’ll admit his previous picture, The Ides of March is slightly shaky).  Unfortunately, his confident direction is nowhere to be found in his latest film, The Monuments Men.  The story is scattershot in structure, narrative, and tone.  The premise is fascinating, but Clooney can never seem to find the right angle, and it’s unclear if we’re watching a drama with comedic elements or a rousing World War II picture with moments of tragedy.  There’s almost a total lack of cohesion, and while Clooney is occasionally able to regain control of the picture, the best moments rely almost entirely on the performances.

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