RZA Talks BRICK MANSIONS, Meeting Luc Besson, How He Likes to Work as an Actor, Playing Blind Master in G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, and More

by     Posted 126 days ago

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Opening this weekend is the action film Brick Mansions.  The movie is a remake of District B13 and stars Paul Walker as an undercover detective tracking down a drug dealer (RZA) who has stolen a weapon of mass destruction. The chase leads into the ghetto known as “Brick Mansions”, where he enlists help from Lino (David Belle), who knows the streets better than anyone and isn’t afraid of the drug dealers.  The film was written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen (Taken).  For more on Brick Mansions watch the trailer.

At the recent Los Angeles press day, I landed an exclusive video interview with RZA.  He talked about how he got involved in the movie, meeting Besson, how he likes to work as an actor, if he was sad not to have more scenes with Belle, what it meant to play Blind Master in G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 344 days ago

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Large explosions, death-defying aerobatics, flashing gunfire, and buff people talking about stuff in dramatic fashion. G.I. Joe: Retaliation gives audiences exactly what they’re expecting—nothing more, and nothing less—which can be a good thing.

G.I. Joe: Retaliation picks up where the first movie left off, with Duke (played by Channing Tatum) leading the elite fighting force in a number of missions against their hated foe, COBRA. While celebrating some much deserved downtime, the Joes are attacked by a squadron of COBRA helicopters and ground units, and are killed almost to a man, save for a few survivors. On the verge of eradication and marked as terrorists by their government, the Joes must uncover the face of their attackers and once again save the world’s governments from being overtaken by the diabolical Cobra Commander.  Hit the jump for my full review of G.I. Joe: Retaliation on Blu-ray.

New to Blu-ray: G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, THE DEVIL’S BACKBONE Criterion, STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION – Season Four, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 27 days ago

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Here’s a look at this week’s new Blu-ray releases:

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Jon M. Chu Talks G.I. JOE 3, the Script, Release Date, New Joes, and Much More; Says Bruce Willis and Dwayne Johnson Will Return

by     Posted 1 year, 33 days ago

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With G.I. Joe: Retaliation now available on VOD and hitting Blu-ray/DVD next week, I was able to sit down with director Jon M. Chu last weekend for an exclusive video interview.  However, with Chu returning to direct G.I. Joe 3, I used a lot of my time talking about the next installment and what fans can expect.  Some of the highlights he told me were:

  • Bruce Willis and Dwayne Johnson are returning.
  • The release date is still being figured out.
  • Regarding the script, they’re currently “narrowing down the writer.”
  • On Retaliation, they learned that fans were okay with stretching things a little further, so now they can “double down on the adventure part of this movie.”  He cautions that they won’t go sci-fi, but they can “push the boundaries of the world a bit more.”
  • They’re not sure if they’re going to shoot in 3D and/or IMAX, but everything’s on the table.  Says there are some benefits to post-converting.
  • They learned on Retaliation that it’s hard to have a lot of characters, but it would be fun to see some new Joes joining the team.
  • I asked if he ever thought about combining the worlds of Transformers and G.I. Joe since they’re both owned by Hasbro. Says he would love to, as long as the reality of their worlds matches.

In addition to the highlights above, Chu talked a lot about what’s on the Retaliation Blu-ray, the legacy of G.I. Joe and how they can incorporate some of those things in the third film, working with Hasbro, Masters of the Universe, what he collects, and how he wants to hear from the fans regarding what they want to see in the third installment.  If you’re a G.I. Joe fan, I think you’ll really enjoy the interview.  Watch it after the jump.

Weekend Box Office: OBLIVION Takes First Place with $38.1 Million

by     Posted 1 year, 129 days ago

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It was the only game in town, so Oblivion’s first place finish this weekend didn’t come as a shock. Universal’s sci-fi release had a solid debut – earning an estimated $38.1 million from 3,783 locations, or just under what G.I. Joe: Retaliation managed three weeks back. Oblivion also topped its initial domestic projection of $35 million, though the real strength of the Tom Cruise vehicle is overseas.

 Title Weekend Total
1.  Oblivion $38,152,000 $38.1
2.  42 $18,025,000 $54
3.  The Croods $9,500,000 $154.8
4.  Scary Movie 5 $6,296,000 $22.9
5.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation $5,775,000 $111.2
6.  The Place Beyond the Pines $4,745,888 $11.4
7.  Olympus Has Fallen $4,500,000 $88.8
8.  Evil Dead $4,100,000 $48.4
9.  Jurassic Park 3D $4,000,000 $38.4
10.  Oz the Great & Powerful $3,048,000 $223.7

Weekend Box Office: EVIL DEAD Rises to $26 Million; JURASSIC PARK 3D Falls to Fourth

by     Posted 1 year, 143 days ago

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Evil Dead was the clear box office champ this weekend. The horror remake earned an estimated $26 million from 3,025 locations, or about $5 million more than originally projected. The weekend’s only other ‘new’ release was Jurassic Park 3D. With $18.2 million from 2,771 runs, the converted-classic fell to fourth behind the more-current 3D hit, The Croods.

 Title Weekend Total
1.  Evil Dead $26,000,000 $26
2.  G.I. Joe Retaliation $21,100,000 $86.6
3.  The Croods $21,100,000 $125.8
4.  Jurassic Park 3D $18,247,000 $18.2
5.  Olympus Has Fallen $10,042,000 $71.1
6.  Tyler Perry’s Temptation $10,000,000 $38.3
7.  Oz the Great & Powerful $8,171,000 $212.7
8.  The Host $5,239,000 $19.6
9.  The Call $3,500,000 $45.5
10.  Admission $2,054,000 $15.3

Friday Box Office: EVIL DEAD Delivers $10.1 Million Debut; JURASSIC PARK 3D Takes Second

by     Posted 1 year, 144 days ago

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The April box office is off to a promising start with the launch of Evil Dead. From 3,025 locations, the horror remake earned an estimated $10.1 million on Friday – including $1.8 million from its Thursday 10 pm and midnight screenings. Evil Dead will fall short of recent genre remakes like Friday the 13th ($40.9 million); but the reboot of the 1983 cult-classic is already running ahead of projections and could realize as much as $28 million through Sunday. Jurassic Park 3D, the latest blockbuster to receive a digital makeover, took in a more modest $7 million from 2,771 locations. Though good enough for Friday’s second spot, the re-release is expected to fall behind G.I. Joe: Retaliation and The Croods on the weekend chart. We’ll have full details tomorrow.

 Title Friday Total
1.  Evil Dead $10,100,000 $10.1
2.  Jurassic Park 3D $7,000,000 $7
3.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation $6,400,000 $69.9
4.  The Croods $5,800,000 $110.5
5.  Tyler Perry’s Temptation $3,400,000 $31.7

Weekend Box Office: G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Locks Down Second Best Easter Opening of All Time

by     Posted 1 year, 150 days ago

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As expected, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, wound up on top this weekend. The action sequel earned an estimated $41.2 million from 3,719 locations, or $51.7 million including its Thursday debut. In terms of Easter openings, that is the second-highest ever, behind the $61.2 million of 2010’s Clash of the Titans. Tyler Perry’s Temptation was also a draw, leaving The Host the only new release to struggle over the 2013 Easter frame.

 Title Weekend   Total
1.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation $41,200,000   $51.7
2.  The Croods $26,500,000   $88.6
3.  Tyler Perry’s Temptation $22,300,000   $22.3
4.  Olympus Has Fallen $14,000,000   $54.7
5.  Oz the Great & Powerful $11,605,000   $198.2
6.  The Host $11,002,000   $11
7.  The Call $4,800,000   $39.4
8.  Admission $3,252,900   $11.7
9.  Spring Breakers $2,758,000   $10
10.  The Incredible Burt Wonderstone $1,300,000   $20.5

TOP 5: THE WOLVERINE Trailers, G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, First Trailer and Poster for WHITE HOUSE DOWN, PAIN & GAIN, THE HOST Interviews

by     Posted 1 year, 151 days ago

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Before I dive into the main topic of this week’s opening paragraph, just a quick disclaimer that the Top 5 will be taking a week off next Saturday to accommodate the first, and perhaps only, trip to Hawaii I will ever take. Here’s to hoping it’s less awkward but equally as life-changing and Kristen Bell/Mila Kunis-filled as Forgetting Sarah Marshall depicted. That said, while it fell just short of the cut this week, I still want to draw attention to the first trailer for director Adam Wingard‘s You’re Next that debuted on Thursday. As a horror fan, I’m always excited when a new entry in the genre gets lauded from both sides of the aisle (horror fans and those who aren’t as giddy about movies that make them think twice about turning out the lights). As far as I’m concerned, August 23rd can’t get here soon enough.

All Hawaii and horror fanboy talk aside, this week’s list offers up the first trailer(s) for The Wolverine, interviews with Dwayne Johnson and more for G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the first trailer and posters for White House Down, a new red-band trailer for Pain & Gain, and The Host interviews with Saoirse Ronan and more. As you’re probably expecting, a brief recap and link to all of the above can be found after the jump.

Friday Box Office: G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Leads Easter Weekend Field with $15.5 Million

by     Posted 1 year, 151 days ago

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After opening to an estimated $10.5 million on Thursday (including $2.2 million from Wednesday night previews), G.I Joe: Retaliation was the easy winner at Friday’s box office. The long-delayed sequel to 2009’s G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra earned a reported $15.5 million from 3,719 locations; putting it on track for a first-place weekend finish of $38 million. That would make Retaliation the third-highest Easter debut of all time, behind Clash of the Titans and 2006’s Scary Movie 4.

Opening one day after Retaliation, the weekend’s two additional new titles fell short of holdover hit The Croods. Tyler Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor earned an estimated $9.4 million from 2,047 locations towards a projected first-weekend of $22 million: a debut comparable to Perry’s past Easter releases. Playing in fewer theatres, Temptation still crushed The Host. Based on Stephanie Meyer’s 2008 sci-fi novel, The Host earned $5.5 million from 3,202 locations on Friday and is expected to claim less than $15 million through Sunday.  We’ll have full details tomorrow.

 Title Friday Total
1.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation $15,500,000 $26
2.  The Croods $10,700,000 $72.8
3.  Tyler Perry’s Temptation $9,400,000 $9.4
4.  The Host $5,500,000 $5.5
5.  Olympus Has Fallen $4,800,000 $45.5

Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talks G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, What He’d Like to See in G.I. JOE 3, Filming at NASA, JACK RYAN, RED 2, and Much More

by     Posted 1 year, 152 days ago

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Jon M. Chu’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation is now playing in theaters.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum,  D.J. Cotrona, Elodie YungRay ParkByung-hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Walton Goggins, RZA and Adrianne Palicki For more on the film, here’s clips, images, on set interviews, and all our previous coverage.

Last weekend, I sat down with producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura for an extended interview.  Over the past few days we’ve posted what he said about Jack Ryan and Red 2, an adaptation of the Vince Flynn novel American Assassin and the true story Deepwater Horizon.  But that was just the tip of the iceberg, because we also talked about making G.I. Joe, the nine-minute dialogue-free action sequence featuring Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes, the 3D post conversion, changes from the first film, the rumored reshoots, what it was like to film at NASA, how involved Hasbro is with the project, and what he’d like to see in G.I. Joe 3 if they make it.  In addition, we also talked about how the collapsing home video market has changed the way movies are made, the lack of risk-taking with regards to the material that studios are choosing to make, the difficulty of selling sci-fi and the key to landing audience interest, whether he’s read any great scripts recently, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Dwayne Johnson Talks G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, Collaborating with Jon M. Chu, the 3D Conversion, the Fight Scenes, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 152 days ago

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Jon M. Chu’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation is now playing in theaters.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum,  D.J. Cotrona, Elodie YungRay ParkByung-hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Walton Goggins, RZA and Adrianne Palicki For more on the film, here’s clips, images, on set interviews, and all our previous coverage.

A few days ago, our partners at Omelete spoke with Johnson.  They talked about the 3D conversion, why they pushed back the release date, working with Jon Chu, the fight sequences, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick Talk G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, the ZOMBIELAND Pilot, VENOM, DEADPOOL, and Other Future Projects

by     Posted 1 year, 153 days ago

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Jon M. Chu’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation is now playing in theaters.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum,  D.J. Cotrona, Elodie YungRay ParkByung-hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Walton Goggins, RZA and Adrianne Palicki For more on the film, here’s clips, images, on set interviews, and all our previous coverage.

Last weekend, I sat down with screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick for an extended interview.  Over the past few days we’ve posted what they said about their Zombieland pilot, the Deadpool movie, and their take on Venom.  However, that was just the tip of the iceberg because during the interview we also talked about making G.I. Joe, the nine-minute dialogue-free action sequence featuring Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes, the 3D post conversion, changes from the original G.I. Joe, landing the job, and other future projects like an HBO series, a sci-fi tent-pole for Sony, Universal’s Cowboy Ninja Vikings, and Bad Robot’s Micronauts.  Hit the jump to watch.

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Review

by     Posted 1 year, 154 days ago

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If you’re going to make a movie designed to sell toys, you may as well show how much fun it is to play with them.  Although almost none of the original characters remain, G.I. Joe: Retaliation continues the spirit of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra by happily embracing big vehicles and weapons to deliver set pieces on steroids that never feel overbearing.  It’s not a particularly smart movie or one with compelling characters, but without any irony it takes one of the villain’s lines to heart: “America likes the guy who blows stuff up.”

Adrianne Palicki & D.J. Cotrona Talk G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, the 3D Conversion, Filming at NASA, Future Projects, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 154 days ago

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Opening tomorrow is director Jon M. Chu’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum,  D.J. Cotrona, Elodie YungRay ParkByung-hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Walton Goggins, RZA and Adrianne Palicki For more on the film, here’s clips, images, on set interviews, and all our previous coverage.

A few days ago at the Los Angeles press day I spoke to Palicki and Cotrona.  We talked about Paramount’s decision to delay the film for a 3D conversion, the rumors that they did a lot of reshoots, what it was like to film at NASA,  their reaction to the finished film, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.

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