Premiering in the summer, the HBO series The Leftovers, from showrunner Damon Lindelof and acclaimed novelist Tom Perrotta, tells the story of what happens after 2% of the world’s population abruptly disappears without explanation. The pilot starts off by giving a glimpse into The Departure, but really focuses on the lives of who didn’t make the cut and were left behind, three years later. Having attended a preview screening of the pilot, I can say that it’s intriguing, it’s edgy and it definitely pushes the envelope.
During the HBO portion of the TCA Winter Press Tour, Damon Lindelof talked about how you train an audience to not be waiting for absolute answers, why he won’t definitely say whether The Rapture will ever be explained, why the people populating this world even think it’s The Rapture, in the first place, how they’ll be moving past the ending of the book (whether they actually use the book’s ending or not) for the show, that he’s already thinking about how many possible seasons this story could be told over, how many episodes they’ll do per season, just how deeply populated this world is, and how it ended up working out that he left Twitter on the date of The Rapture. Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
In a little under two years, we will have a new Batman onscreen by way of Ben Affleck. It’s a very short turnaround considering that Christopher Nolan just finished his Dark Knight Trilogy last year, but Warner Bros. clearly wants to keep the momentum it gained with Man of Steel, and bringing Batman back into the fold appears to be part of that plan. Let’s not forget, though, that Nolan’s new vision for Batman with Batman Begins was a complete 180 from any Batman iteration—or superhero movie in general—that we had seen before, and the process of casting the caped crusader was the most important piece of the puzzle.
The new Blu-ray set The Dark Knight Trilogy: Ultimate Collector’s Edition went on sale earlier this week, and one of the many new extras found on the set is a retrospective look at casting the Batman, featuring interviews with everyone from Nolan to Damon Lindelof. A portion of that feature has made its way online, and after the jump you can watch Christian Bale, Cillian Murphy, and Eion Bailey (Band of Brothers) audition for the lead role and Nolan himself discuss the lengthy casting process.
Three years after Lost ended with a polarizing and much buzzed-about series finale, creator Damon Lindelof is officially returning to television. Warner Bros. TV announced today that HBO has ordered Lindelof’s The Leftovers to series, with a 10-episode first season likely to premiere sometime next year. Based on the book of the same name by Tom Perrotta, the story takes place after the Rapture, centering on the people in a small town that didn’t make the cut. Justin Theroux leads a cast that includes Liv Tyler, Christopher Eccleston, Amy Brenneman, Carrie Coon, Ann Dowd, and Chris Zylka.
The pilot was directed by Friday Night Lights alum Peter Berg, and obviously HBO took a liking to the result. Lindelof will serve as showrunner on the series, which will likely decrease the amount of time he is able to devote to feature films. He most recently co-wrote the Disney pic Tomorrowland with Brad Bird, and that film is currently in production with George Clooney in the lead and a December 2014 release date set.
Disney announced today that filming is officially underway in Vancouver on director Brad Bird’s (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) new film Tomorrowland. Bird co-wrote the screenplay for the secretive film with Damon Lindelof, based on an idea by Bird, Lindelof, and Jeff Jensen, and the official synopsis is as follows:
Bound by a shared destiny, a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor jaded by disillusionment embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory as “Tomorrowland.”
George Clooney stars as the inventor and Britt Robertson (Under the Dome) is the teenager, while Hugh Laurie plays the film’s antagonist. Bird has assembled an impressive filmmaking team to bring the project to life, including Oscar-winning Life of Pi and Oblivion cinematographer Claudio Miranda. Hit the jump to read the full press release. Tomorrowland opens in theaters on December 12, 2014.
One of the many live-action projects teased at D23 this weekend was director Brad Bird and screenwriter Damon Lindelof‘s Tomorrowland. While not much is known about the project (here’s what Dave had to say about the presentation), the fact that these two storytellers are involved is enough to have me incredibly excited. After all, Bird directed some of my favorite films (The Iron Giant, The Incredibles, and Ratatouille), and Lindelof was involved in one of the best shows of the last decade (Lost). So it’s an extremely safe bet I’ll be in a movie theater on opening day, December 12, 2014.
Shortly after his presentation at D23, I spoke to Lindelof backstage. He talked about what the film is about, the viral campaign, the cool Tomorrowland pin he was wearing, and more. Hit the jump to watch.
Hot on the heels of last week’s news that Justin Theroux (Wanderlust) has been tapped to lead Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof’s new HBO pilot The Leftovers, four more actors have joined the cast. Deadline reports that Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who), Ann Dowd (Compliance), Amanda Warren (Seven Psychopaths), and Carrie Coon have joined the ensemble. The potential series is based on the book of the same name by Tom Perrotta and takes place after the Rapture, centering on the people in a small town that didn’t make the cut.
Eccleston, who will be seen later this year as the villain in Marvel’s Thor: The Dark World, has been tapped to play Matt Jamison, a former reverend and current editor of his self-published tabloid. Dowd will play Patti Levin, the leader of an organization that is somewhere between a cult and a movement, Coon will play Nora Durst, a woman who loses her husband and child in the Rapture, and Warren will play Lucy Warburton, the town’s Mayor. Peter Berg is directing the pilot.
Casting is underway for Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof’s first TV series since the ABC drama ended its run in 2010, and the show’s lead has now been set. Variety reports that Justin Theroux has been tapped to topline The Leftovers, which is based on Tom Perrotta’s novel of the same name that takes place after the Rapture, centering on the people that didn’t make the cut. Theroux will play the show’s lead, chief of police Kevin Garvey who is described as “a father of two who is trying to maintain some semblance of normalcy in a world that is starting to completely reject that notion.”
Friday Night Lights helmer Peter Berg is directing the pilot for HBO, and Lindelof will serve as executive producer/showrunner alongside fellow EP’s Perotta, Ron Yerxa, Albert Berger, Sarah Aubrey and Berg should HBO decided to order the pilot to series. Theroux is best known in front of the camera for appearing in Wanderlust, Your Highness, and Parks and Recreation, but he’s also a screenwriter, having penned the scripts for Iron Man 2 and Tropic Thunder. Hit the jump for a synopsis of Perotta’s novel.
Damon Lindelof is on the interview circuit, mostly explaining what he did with Star Trek Into Darkness. Lost ended in 2006, and Lindelof is waiting to hear if HBO will pick up his Rapture series The Leftovers, which would throw him back into the grind of producing a television show. In the transition years, Lindelof has tackled a variety of sci-fi tentpoles: Star Trek, Cowboys & Aliens, Prometheus. The next is Tomorrowland, an intriguing project at Disney that Brad Bird (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) will direct. George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, and Raffey Cassidy are on board to star.
Rumored plot details leaked in March. Lindelof didn’t elaborate much on what was out there other than to say some of the public information is “completely and totally erroneous.” But he did discuss the inspiration behind the project, how he wants to give Tomorrowland a story (the Pirates of the Caribbean treatment), and his fascination with Disney history. Read what he had to say after the jump.
In the lead-up to Star Trek Into Darkness, co-writer Damon Lindelof said that the reason for the secrecy was “the audience needs to have the same experience that the crew is having. You’re Kirk, you’re Spock, you’re McCoy, so if they don’t know who the bad guy is going to be in the movie, then you shouldn’t know.” Lindelof added that if people knew who the villain was before the movie opened, then it would have been a let-down when it was revealed in the movie. Now that audiences have seen Star Trek Into Darkness, and opened the “mystery box”, there’s some curiosity about the spoilers that were so closely guarded throughout the film’s production and marketing campaign.
Hit the jump for what Lindelof had to say about the villain and more [obviously, there are spoilers ahead for people who haven't seen Star Trek Into Darkness].
As someone whose only firsthand experience with the Star Trek franchise comes by virtue of J.J. Abrams‘ two Trek films, I know I’m in over my head when the topic presents itself. When you mention Trek, you’re referencing (either directly or indirectly) a rich legacy filled with peaks and valleys, genre-defining characters and moments, and an international fanbase that rivals any of pop-culture’s most enduring titles. And yet here I am, with two films under my belt (both of which I enjoyed), talking about it. Obviously, I have nothing at stake with regards to Star Trek Into Darkness. Whether you like it or dislike it is of no consequence to me. My only aim today is to extend a humble word of caution to the Trek fans who have years of equity built-up in their beloved franchise: be careful not to dismiss or begrudge it solely because it’s trying to appeal to the largest possible audience. Abrams’ Trek films aren’t above reproach, but they also aren’t void of redeeming qualities. Try to at least acknowledge some of those qualities when tearing into them or risk coming off as someone whose real issue is that a bunch of people now enjoy this thing that you once considered yourself unique for liking.
All preachiness aside, this week’s Top 5 includes several interviews from Star Trek Into Darkness, rumors surrounding Christopher Nolan being approached to direct James Bond 24, the first trailers for Marvel’s new ABC series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., a new trailer for Guillermo Del Toro‘s Pacific Rim, and new photos and a video from the set of director Jose Padilha‘s RoboCop remake. If I haven’t lost you yet, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.
With J.J. Abrams Star Trek Into Darkness now playing around the world, we recently landed an exclusive phone interview with Damon Lindelof. During the interview, the Into Darkness screenwriter/producer talked about making the sequel, the length of the first cut, deleted scenes, how the beginning of the film changed during the editing process, whether an extended cut of Into Darkness will be on the Blu-ray, when a third film could possibly get made, and a lot more. Hit the jump for what he had to say.
There are those who boldly go where none have gone before on movie screens and those who do it in real life; you can chat with both during a Google+ Hangout with the cast and crew of Star Trek Into Darkness, plus real astronauts from NASA. Director J.J. Abrams, writer Damon Lindelof and stars Chris Pine, Alice Eve and John Cho will join Chris Cassidy, who is currently on the International Space Station, and Earth-bound astronauts Michael Fincke and Kjell Lindgren to talk Star Trek fiction and NASA fact. More importantly, this is your chance to ask questions of both sets of space adventurers! (Just don’t ask what happens when you wring out a washcloth in zero gravity. It’s been done.) Hit the jump for all the details.
Star Trek Into Darkness also stars Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana,Benedict Cumberbatch, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Anton Yelchin and Bruce Greenwood and opens in IMAX 3D tomorrow, and in both 2D and 3D in traditional theaters on May 16th.
Last summer, Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof talked about his collaboration with Tom Perrotta (Election) in adapting Perrotta’s 2011 post-Rapture novel The Leftovers for HBO, which the premium network picked up in February. It was announced today (via Production Weekly) that Peter Berg (Friday Night Lights, Hancock, Battleship) is now on board to direct the pilot, continuing a trend of movie directors making a move to the small screen. Filming will take place in New York and should start in mid-June, so expect a 2014 premiere date should HBO pick the pilot up to series.
The Leftovers marks Lindelof’s first return to television since the end of Lost (however you feel about that), but as has been pointed out, him being so in demand for big-screen projects may see him reduce his involvement with the series a tad, although he did co-write the Leftovers pilot with Perrotta and appears to be on-track to serve as showrunner. Hit the jump for more on The Leftovers.
Quite a hubbub occurred earlier today over 20th Century Fox’s supposed difficulty in developing a sequel to Prometheus, and now screenwriter Damon Lindelof has provided a statement on the matter. Talk of a follow-up to Ridley Scott’s sci-fi film has been around ever since Scott and Co. were doing press for the first film, with both Scott and Lindelof offering up plenty of details regarding where Prometheus 2 might lead. The first film was developed with an eye towards possibly moving forward with a full trilogy should audiences spark to Prometheus, and with a global box office haul of $403 million, Fox is understandably keen on getting a sequel going soon.
Lindelof opted not to come back and pen the script for the follow-up due to scheduling issues, and a new report today claims that Fox and Scott are “freaking out” over trying to figure out the story for Prometheus 2 after Lindelof “abandoned” the project. Hit the jump for much more, including Lindelof’s comment on the matter.
With a little under two months to go before the release of director J.J. Abrams’ sequel Star Trek Into Darkness, it’s a bit crazy to think that the identity of the film’s villain character played by Benedict Cumberbatch has yet to be officially confirmed. There are plenty of people who think they know who Cumberbatch plays (Khaaaaaan!), but no one from the movie has officially stated who this character actually is beyond the name “John Harrison.” This has all been part of the plan from the get-go, hatched by Abrams and his creative partners, including screenwriter Damon Lindelof.
Both Abrams and Lindelof have a bit of a reputation for their penchant for secrecy when it comes to new projects, and the two have essentially mastered the “non-answer answer” with regards to the countless promotional interviews that are necessary for films on the scale of Into Darkness or Prometheus. Lindelof recently spoke a bit about Into Darkness, revealing why it’s so important to them to keep the nature of Cumberbatch’s character a secret and talking about the theme of Into Darkness in relation to the first film. Hit the jump to read on.