Bill Murray to Sing Christmas Carols in Christmas Special Directed by Sofia Coppola

by     Posted 11 days ago

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I fear this is a joke, but I sure hope it’s true: Bill Murray and Lost in Translation director Sofia Coppola are planning a Christmas special in which Murray will croon Christmas carols.  Murray elaborated:

“It’s not going to be live.  We’re going to do it like a little movie.  It won’t have a format, but it’s going to have music.  It will have texture.  It will have threads through it that are writing.  There will be prose… It will have a patina style and wit to it.  It will be nice.”

More on what little we know about the Christmas special after the jump.

GHOSTBUSTERS 3 Hires Katie Dippold to Write Script With Director Paul Feig, Female Cast Confirmed

by     Posted 16 days ago

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Well I guess it turns out that Paul Feig is directing Ghostbusters 3 after all since we’re hearing that Katie Dippold (who wrote The Heat), has just been signed to co-write the third installment with Feig.  This is actually not at all who I expected would get the gig, and it’s all the more refreshing because of it.  Typically these giant franchises land in the hands of someone who has a lot of credits and a long track record with the studios, and even though Dippold’s last film was a giant hit, she’s still something of a new voice.  In my mind this is most certainly a positive development.

It’s been rumored for a while now that this take on Ghostbusters 3 would be a reboot of sorts that focusses on a strong female ensemble with minimal appearances from the established cast.  With Bill Murray unwilling and Harold Ramis gone, I certainly hope this is the direction the project is still headed in.  Hit the jump for more on Katie Dippold writing Ghostbusters 3.

OLIVE KITTERIDGE Trailer and Poster: Frances McDormand and Richard Jenkins Lead Dark and Funny HBO Miniseries Adaptation

by     Posted 21 days ago

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HBO has released the first Olive Kitteridge trailer for director Lisa Cholodenko’s (The Kids Are All Right) miniseries adaptation of author Elizabeth Strout’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel.  The story focuses on a retired schoolteacher (Frances McDormand) and the characters that surround her, as the various tales of affairs, suicide, and emotional problems in her small Maine town are told through her eyes.  McDormand looks to be quite incredible here as the titular lead, and Cholodenko appears to do a swell job of balancing the darkly funny and dramatic tone.  Everything about this looks great, from the cinematography to the supporting cast, and I can’t wait to dive into the four-hour story next month.

Hit the jump to watch the Olive Kitteridge trailer and to check out the poster.  The miniseries also stars Richard Jenkins, Bill Murray, John Gallagher Jr., Peter Mullan, Rosemarie DeWitt, Zoe Kazan, Jesse Plemons, and Rachel BrosnahanOlive Kitteridge will air in four parts, with “Pharmacy” and “Incoming Tide” debuting on November 2nd followed by “A Different Road” and “Security” on November 3rd.

GHOSTBUSTERS and GHOSTBUSTERS II (Mastered in 4K) Blu-ray Reviews

by     Posted 27 days ago

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Ghostbusters was a cultural phenomenon, and hasn’t left pop culture since it was released in 1984.  Then again, it would be hard to forget considering co-writer Dan Aykroyd has been promising a third entry in the franchise since the nineties.  To celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the first film (and the twenty-fifth of the sequel Ghostbusters II) Sony has packaged both together with new extras and the best transfers yet of the films.  The first film remains a classic, while the sequel is not without pleasures.  Both star Bill Murray, Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Sigourney Weaver, Ernie Hudson, Rick Moranis, and Annie Potts, and both were directed by Ivan Reitman.  My review of Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II on Blu-ray follows after the jump. 

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

by     Posted 39 days 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 49 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 64 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 66 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 84 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 86 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 105 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 115 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 131 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 156 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 208 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.

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