STAR WARS: EPISODE VII to Shoot in Abu Dhabi as Stand-In for Tatooine

by     Posted 9 days ago

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Your (almost) daily dose of Star Wars semi-news is ready.  A few weeks ago, a report surfaced that director J.J. Abrams was looking to kick off filming on Star Wars: Episode VII in Morocco and Tunisia, which served as the stand-ins for Tatooine in George Lucas’ previous Star Wars films.  However, it appears that a new city will actually serve as the stand-in for Tatooine this time around, as a four-week shoot is being planned in Abu Dhabi.  Hit the jump for more on the latest development regarding Star Wars: Episode VII.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Takes Place 30 Years After RETURN OF THE JEDI; Starts Filming in May

by     Posted 32 days ago

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Disney CEO Bob Iger decided to drop some big news during this morning’s earnings call.  In addition to revealing that sequels to Pixar’s The Incredibles and Cars are in the works, he provided a brief update on Star Wars: Episode VII, revealing that the sequel will take place 30 years after the events of Episode V: Return of the Jedi.  Moreover, and possibly even more surprising, Iger confirmed that filming on Episode VII begins in May despite the fact that not a single castmember beyond R2D2 has been officially announced.  Hit the jump for more, including the official press release.

Watch the 2-Minute Opening Shot from Alfonso Cuarón’s NBC Series BELIEVE

by     Posted 43 days ago

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Filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón just won the Oscar for Best Director, but you don’t have to wait long to see the talented director’s next project.  In the midst of the very lengthy post-production process on Gravity, Cuarón made his first foray into television by writing and directing the pilot for NBC’s new drama series Believe.  The network has now released the first two minutes of the show online ahead of its Monday premiere, and it’s fittingly one of the director’s signature long, unbroken shots.  The story centers on a wrongfully-imprisoned death row inmate who is broken out of jail in order to protect a young girl with powerful abilities.  Cuarón also serves as an executive producer on the show alongside J.J. Abrams, and this is definitely a promising opening for the show.

Hit the jump to watch the first two minutes of the series.  The show stars Johnny SequoyahDelroy Lindo, and Kyle MacLachlanBelieve premieres on NBC Monday, March 10th at 10pm ET.

TOP 5: Adam Driver Nears Deal to Play Villain in STAR WARS EPISODE 7, GODZILLA Trailer, NON-STOP, Cinemath Meets Oscar Beat, VERONICA MARS Set Visit

by     Posted 49 days ago

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Lying somewhat quietly between two of David Fincher‘s most beloved works is The Game (1997) starring Michael Douglas. Although it failed to reach the level of critical and box office success enjoyed by Seven (1995) or the cult classic status of Fight Club (1999), after watching its Criterion Collection DVD release this past week I came away thinking that it may actually be one of Fincher’s best directorial efforts. Working from a script by John Brancato and Michael Ferris (2/3 of the writing trio that helped bring you the 2004 Catwoman screenplay that you enjoyed so much), Fincher’s cold/muted color palette, striking visual style, and fantastic pacing help elevate the interesting, albeit occasionally absurd, screenplay to another level. The result is a haunting work that expertly sets up and tears down the callous, calculated world of corporate wealth by forcing Douglas’ Ebenezer Scrooge archetype to see the shell of a life he has outside of his work and possessions. The Game may go off the rails at times, but with Fincher’s steady hand guiding the story it does so in all the extremely dark, right ways.

My Fincher recommendation aside, I should mention that the Top 5 will take a quick week hiatus to allow me to travel next weekend. In the meantime, this week’s installment highlights the Star Wars: Episode VII casting news involving Adam Driver, the new trailer for director Gareth EdwardsGodzilla, a review and interviews for Non-Stop, worlds colliding as Brendan’s Cinemath meets Adam’s Oscar Beat, and our Veronica Mars set visit coverage. As you’ve come to expect, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Will Shoot from Mid-May through September

by     Posted 68 days ago

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It’s been a couple of days since our last Star Wars story, so it’s time for another update on the highly anticipated film.  The firm production dates of Star Wars: Episode VII have been hard to nail down, but a spring start-date was necessary in order to keep the pic on track for its December 2015 release date.  Indeed, HitFix has confirmed through multiple sources that director J.J. Abrams’ sequel will begin filming in mid-May and will shoot through September.  Not a crazy short schedule, but not a particularly lengthy one either.  Hit the jump for more.

J.J. Abrams Says the STAR WARS EPISODE 7 Script is Done; Talks the Jesse Plemons Rumors, How They’ll be Shooting on Film, IMAX, and More

by     Posted 90 days ago

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The ever-prolific J.J. Abrams was in attendance at the NBC portion of the TCA Press Tour, to talk about his latest TV venture Believe, created by Alfonso Cuarón and for which he is executive producer.  As expected, the conversation turned to Star Wars: Episode VII and possible updates.

During the interview, JJ Abrams talked about how the Star Wars script is done and they’re in deep prep on the film, that they’re working really hard on casting, just how many crazy rumors there have been, that he has spoken to actor Jesse Plemons about a role, and how, even though he’ll be shooting Star Wars on film, he’d like to shoot in IMAX again, at some point, when the cameras become more manageable.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII News: Reworked Script Has Original Trilogy Stars in the Leads; Michael Fassbender, Hugo Weaving Eyed for Roles

by     Posted 98 days ago

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Star Wars fans may want to sit down for this one.  While J.J. Abrams has now been onboard to direct Star Wars: Episode VII for nearly a year, solid news with regards to the pic has been very, very hard to come by.  As the film’s production start date looms closer, we all knew this was about to change, and last night we learned that Friday Night Lights actor Jesse Plemons is being eyed for a role in the pic. Now THR has dumped a huge quantity of info about the follow-up, including word that Michael Fassbender, Hugo Weaving, and Adam Driver are all being eyed for roles.  More interestingly, though, the script for Episode VII has apparently changed significantly since screenwriter Michael Arndt was pushed off the project, and the lead characters for Episode VII may now be the original trilogy stars: Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford.

Hit the jump for the Star Wars: Episode VII motherload.

TOP 5: End of the Year Edition – J.J. Abrams Directing STAR WARS: EPISODE VII, Cinemath Returns, Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot are Batman and Wonder Woman, Netflix Lands Marvel Live-Action Series’ While Blockbuster Dies, Fact-Checking BREAKING BAD

by     Posted 112 days ago

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For the third year in a row I find myself looking through previous Top 5 installments on the last Saturday of the year, trying to whittle the hundreds of stories I’ve covered in the past 52 weeks down to the five that I find most interesting, important, popular, etc. At its most basic, this is just an exercise of further reducing a list that I’ve been trimming and prepping on a weekly basis all year long. That’s likely the most boring/tedious way of looking at it, but true nonetheless.

At its best, I see the “End of the Year Edition” as a Collider time capsule of sorts. A snapshot that is in no way comprehensive enough to properly acknowledge the amount of time, work, thought, travel, money, etc. that goes into making this site what it is. And yet, representative enough of our content as a whole that someone who stumbles upon it can see what we were trying to accomplish: to cover the things that we’re passionate about in the most interesting and sincere way possible and to completely and utterly dominate the Internet by way of Star Wars and superhero movie casting rumors. Keep reading for the five stories/pieces of content that in many ways defined our 2013.

The STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Script Hasn’t Been Turned in Yet

by     Posted 127 days ago

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While production is poised to begin on Star Wars: Episode VII early next year, it appears that there’s still a bit of script work left to do for the highly anticipated sequel.  We know that Oscar-winning Little Miss Sunshine scribe Michael Arndt had a treatment prepared when Disney first purchased Lucasfilm and announced plans for more Star Wars films, and while he worked with director J.J. Abrams on the screenplay once Abrams was hired on, it sounds like Arndt’s take on the material is being significantly reworked.

It was announced a few months ago that Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan were taking over scripting duties on Episode VII, and now Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn has revealed that he hasn’t yet received the script.  Hit the jump for more.

J.J. Abrams Says He Regrets Hiding the STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS Khan Reveal; Talks Joe Cornish Directing TREK 3

by     Posted 138 days ago

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While this year’s sequel Star Trek Into Darkness was a sizable commercial success and garnered mostly positive reviews from critics, many longtime Trek fans weren’t so keen on director J.J. Abrams’ follow-up.  One of the key criticisms launched at Into Darkness was its heavy riffing on previous Trek film Wrath of Khan, specifically Abrams and Co.’s coyness about the true identity of Benedict Cumberbatch’s villainous character.  The team wanted to keep the film’s Big Bad a surprise until opening weekend, and they went to great lengths to conceal the fact that Cumberbatch was indeed playing Khan.

Abrams is currently knee-deep in pre-production on Star Wars: Episode VII, but he recently spoke frankly about Star Trek Into Darkness, admitting that they probably should’ve been honest with fans by confirming that Khan was in the film.  Moreover, he addressed the possibility of Joe Cornish taking the helm of Star Trek 3.  Hit the jump to read on.

J.J. Abrams Says New STAR WARS Release Date Is “a Huge Improvement”; Explains Reluctance to Shoot in London

by     Posted 145 days ago

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J.J. Abrams has mastered the art of talking without really saying anything at all.  Of course, he’s had lots of practice working on the mystery-laden Lost and two Star Trek films, but those feel like cake walks compared to the amount of information he has to keep under wraps on the hugely anticipated new Star Wars film.  Abrams has not really talked at length about Episode VII, and when he does discuss the film he does so very, very carefully.  Such is the case with today’s interview, in which Abrams “talks” about the new release date for Episode VII and his initial reluctance to shoot the film in London.  Hit the jump to read on.

Executive Producers J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman Talk ALMOST HUMAN, Changing the Pilot’s Ending, Their Working Relationship, and More

by     Posted 155 days ago

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The new Fox series Almost Human, from creator J.H. Wyman (Fringe) and executive producer J.J. Abrams, is a high-tech, high-stakes action drama set 35 years in the future, when police officers are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids. An unlikely and intriguing partnership is forged when part-machine cop, John Kennex (Karl Urban), is forced to pair with the part-human android, Dorian (Michael Ealy), to investigate what is clearly a deep cover-up.  The show also stars Lili Taylor, Minka Kelly, Mackenzie Crook and Michael Irby.

During this recent interview to promote the show’s two-night premiere, on November 17th and 18th, executive producers J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman talked about what makes their working relationship so successful, why the ending of the pilot changed, why this idea was best suited for a TV show, the ongoing themes being explored, how the casting process has affected character development, what will be propelling the story forward each week, robot ethics, what sets Almost Human apart from anything that Bad Robot has ever produced, and the influence of Blade Runner.  Check out what they had to say after the jump.

Extended Trailer for J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman’s New Fox Series ALMOST HUMAN

by     Posted 155 days ago

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Fox has released an extended trailer for the new upcoming series Almost Human.  Executive produced by J.J. Abrams and Fringe showrunner J.H. Wyman, the series is set in the not-too-distant future where human cops enforce law alongside android partners.  Karl Urban plays a human cop with a synthetic leg and a clear prejudice against robots who is assigned a robot partner, played by Michael Ealy.  The buddy cop genre isn’t exactly a novel idea, but as with most network series, execution is the key to success.  Wyman found a groove with Fringe that conjured up a loyal fanbase, and with Almost Human he and Abrams appear to be playing in a more commercial-friendly sandbox.  Urban’s a charming fella and the world building appears to be strong, so hopefully Almost Human delivers the goods.

Hit the jump to watch an extended movie-style trailer for the show, and click here to watch the opening eight minutes.  The series also stars Lili Taylor, Mackenzie Crook, and Minka KellyAlmost Human kicks off a two-night premiere this Sunday, November 17th and continues on Monday, November 18th.

J.J. Abrams Poses with R2-D2 from STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Workshop in New Image

by     Posted 156 days ago

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With an official release date of December 18, 2015 now set, director J.J. Abrams and his Star Wars: Episode VII team are working towards a firm deadline with production set to get underway early next year.  Just in case you thought Abrams and Co. were twiddling their thumbs, the Bad Robot twitter just unveiled a behind-the-scenes image of Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy posing with a rather familiar-looking robot in their workshop where pre-production on Episode VII is well underway.  It’s a fun teaser image that may or may not confirm that R2-D2 will make an appearance in the Star Wars sequel.

Hit the jump to take a look at the image, and if you’d like to submit a video audition to be in the film, click here.

J.J. Abrams Says He and Lawrence Kasdan Took over Screenwriting Duties on STAR WARS: EPISODE VII to Meet the “Time Frame”

by     Posted 163 days ago

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A couple weeks ago, we learned that screenwriter Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3) had left Star Wars: Episode VII, and director J.J. Abrams would write the script with Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back).  A week later, it was reported that although producer Kathleen Kennedy had sought to push the film’s release to 2016, but Disney refused to budge and held on to the previously-announced 2015 release.  Now the two stories have converged with J.J. Abrams explaining that in order to meet the release date, they needed to bring in Kasdan.

Hit the jump for more. [Update: Disney has announced that Star Wars: Episode VII will be released in 3D on December 18, 2015]

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