I’ve used this space on a few occasions to profess my love for ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 documentary series and today’s opening paragraph will get a similar treatment. Director Zak Levitt‘s aptly titled Bad Boys debuted this past Thursday night and, even as someone who grew up adoring the Chicago Bulls, I loved almost every second of it (even with his Detroit roots, I could have lived without the Kid Rock narration). The film focuses on the years of Detroit Pistons basketball known as “The Bad Boys Era”, which included back-to-back NBA Championships for the franchise in ’89 and ’90. As is often the case with 30 for 30 films, Levitt does a nice job of framing the Pistons’ iconic run within a societal context; in this case, the 1967 Detroit riot. In doing this, the pic not only offers a fascinating perspective of the team itself but also great insight into what their trademark physical style of play meant to a city still reeling from the effects of the riot. Less important, but an added plus nonetheless, is the fact that I’m now buzzing with nostalgia for the SNES game Bill Laimbeer’s Combat Basketball.
My broken record praise of 30 for 30 aside, this week’s Top 5 highlights the first trailer for David Fincher‘s Gone Girl, Steve’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes set visit, Transcendence interviews and Matt’s review, Steve’s The Expendables 3 set visit, and Zack Snyder discussing Batman vs. Superman costumes and more. Do the right thing and keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a great movie. In a summer filled with explosions and spectacle, Apes used motion capture and other modern technology to help tell its story and audiences embraced the film. By the time the movie finished it’s theatrical run, it had made close to $500 million worldwide. Based on the box office and reviews, it was no surprise when Fox moved forward with the sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The 2011 film set up a world and story that people wanted to see more of, so this felt like a sequel that was being made for the right reasons.
Last summer, when director Matt Reeves was filming in New Orleans, I got to visit the set with a few other online reporters. While on set I watched some filming, participated in group interviews with some of the cast and filmmakers, and learned a lot of cool stuff about one of my most anticipated films of 2014. If you’re looking forward to Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, hit the jump for 45 things to know about the film.
One of the interesting things about director Matt Reeves‘ Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the way the film flips the switch on how animals and humans currently live. When the film starts, the apes have built a flourishing society in the forest outside San Francisco with Caesar (Andy Serkis) as their leader. On the other hand, the humans, being led by Gary Oldman and Jason Clarke, are living hand-to-mouth, struggling to survive. After the events of the first film when the two societies eventually collided…Let’s just say neither side trusts the other and that dynamic plays into the rest of the film.
During a break in filming last year when the production was in New Orleans, I participated in a group interview with Clarke. He talked about how he got involved in the project, the great script, working with Andy Serkis and the other motion capture actors, his charascter’s backstory and relationship with Caesar, what filming on location adds to a performance, and more. Hit the jump for what he had to say.
20th Century Fox has released 10 new Dawn of the Planet of the Apes images including some fresh details on the upcoming sequel. The story takes place 10 years after the first film and finds Caesar (Andy Serkis) attempting to assert his dominance over the apes while a small human colony struggles to survive in San Francisco. “The small group of humans are struggling to come back from devastation, and the apes are fighting for survival,” director Matt Reeves tells USA Today. “The big question is, can they co-exist?” Serkis also points out that in the new movie, “Caesar not only has a wife, but also an infant son and a teenage son,” adding, “This film centers around the notion of family — the survival of the family and what lengths you would go to protect them when life is extremely hard and tough.” In another interesting note, Judy Greer plays Caesar’s wife Cornelia, and before she got the role, Terry Notary, a former Cirque du Soleil performer and the film’s stunt and movement coordinator, had to sign off. I can only hope Greer responded, “You are not my supervisor!”
Hit the jump to check out the images. The film also stars Jason Clarke, Keri Russell, Gary Oldman, Toby Kebbell, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Kirk Acevedo, and Enrique Murciano. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opens in 3D on July 11th.
A few days ago at CinemaCon, 20th Century Fox world premiered footage from a number of their upcoming films. While I’m incredibly excited about their 2014 and 2015 slate, near the top of my list is director Matt Reeves Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The story takes place 10 years after the first film and finds Caesar (Andy Serkis) attempting to assert his dominance over the apes while a small human colony struggles to survive in San Francisco. The film also stars Jason Clarke, Keri Russell, Gary Oldman, Toby Kebbell, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Kirk Acevedo, Enrique Murciano, and Judy Greer.
With the film opening July 11th, Fox has started ramping up the promotion for the film. Just a few minutes ago we posted the brand new TV spot (watch it here), and now I’m happy to offer our readers an exclusive new poster. As you can see after the jump, the poster is clearly a nod to the emotion in the movie, like we saw in the last one. Having seen the footage at CinemaCon, I can tell you there will be epic action and a great story. I really can’t wait to see the finished film. Check out the poster and let me know what you think of it in the comments.
A few days ago, we got a new set photo from Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, and now three more have arrived. The story takes place 15 years after the first film and finds Caesar (Andy Serkis) attempting to assert his dominance over the apes while a small human colony struggles to survive in San Francisco. While Rise of the Planet of the Apes certainly had its fair share of apes, they’re presumably going to be an even bigger part of the sequel. This means more mo-capping, and one of these photos show Serkis and his co-stars going ape while the other two focus on human characters played by Jason Clarke and Keri Russell and a close-up on director Matt Reeves. But most importantly, Caesar’s going to be riding a horse. Aw, yeah.
Hit the jump to check out the images. The film also stars Gary Oldman, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Kirk Acevedo, Enrique Murciano, Toby Kebbell, and Judy Greer. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opens in 3D on July 18th.
Universal Pictures has bumped the survival drama Everest from February 27, 2015 to September 18, 2015. Directed by Baltasar Kormakur (2 Guns), the movie focuses on two different expeditions that struggle to survive while climbing the world’s tallest mountain. The film stars Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, and Jake Gyllenhaal as well as Martin Henderson, Emily Watson, Michael Kelly, and Thomas M. Wright. Even though we’ll have to wait a little longer, the date change is encouraging since Universal might think they have an awards contender if they’ve moved the picture to the fall. The studio will release Everest in 3D and IMAX 3D.
Right now, there’s no competition on September 18, 2015, but a week later Sony will have the family flick Hotel Transylvania 2 and Warner Bros. is releasing the comedy The Intern. Hit the jump for the official synopsis for Everest.
Production is underway in Nepal on director Baltasar Kormakur’s (2 Guns) survival drama Everest, and the first image from the pic has been released. Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, and Jake Gyllenhaal lead the cast as the story revolves around two different expeditions to the summit of Mount Everest that are mired by grave obstacles and one of the fiercest snowstorms ever encountered. The pic is based on real-life events and was written by Mark Medoff (Children of a Lesser God) and Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionaire). This first look image shows a group of climbers led by Clarke braving the snowy conditions, and Everest should be quite a sight to behold when it opens in 3D and IMAX 3D on February 27, 2015.
Hit the jump to check out the image. The film also stars Martin Henderson, Emily Watson, Michael Kelly, and Thomas M. Wright.
I’ve mapped out my Sundance schedule, and I’m making it a point to see The Better Angels. We don’t know when we’ll be getting a new film directed by Terrence Malick, so we’re going to have to settle for this one, which he produced. Although judging by a new clip for the film, “settling” isn’t a pejorative. The cinematography is gorgeous, and it appears to have the same quiet, lilting, character-driven style of Malick’s movies. Per the Sundance logline, the feature is “Set in the harsh wilderness of Indiana, [and] is the story of Abraham Lincoln’s youth. It tells of the hardships that shaped him, the tragedy that marked him forever, and the two women who guided him to immortality.” In this clip, we see that one of the hardships was not getting that there fancy book-larnin’ and being forced to work the fields.
Hit the jump to check out the clip. The film stars Jason Clarke, Diane Kruger, Brit Marling, and Wes Bentley. The Better Angels will make its world premiere at Sundance on January 18th.
20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for director Matt Reeves’ (Let Me In) sequel Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The story takes place 15 years after the first film and finds Caesar (Andy Serkis) attempting to assert his dominance over the apes while a small human colony struggles to survive in San Francisco. The trailer doesn’t really go into all of that, but instead establishes a much darker tone than Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and rightly so. This is a post-apocalypse, and the teaser gives a good sense of what Reeves is going for. If you’re looking for a lot of Caesar, you won’t find it because there’s still plenty of effects work left to do.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. The film also stars Jason Clarke, Keri Russell, Gary Oldman, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Kirk Acevedo, Toby Kebbell, Enrique Murciano, and Judy Greer. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opens in 3D on July 18, 2014.
What began as a way to keep my mind off of my upcoming fantasy football playoff matchup has blossomed into a full-on love affair. Over the past week I’ve watched a considerable amount of Parks and Recreation via Netflix and I couldn’t be happier with my time killer of choice. I’ve made it through the first three seasons, all of which have delivered consistent laughs and excellent character moments (Ron’s inability to resist his ex-wife and Leslie’s attempt to stay awake during Pawnee Cares’ diabetes telethon come to mind). I’ll admit that my television viewing is often marred by my own skepticism. When Parks debuted, I watched the first few episodes and wrote it off as cutting and pasting The Office‘s format into a small town, local government setting. These last few days I’ve realized that’s almost exactly what Parks is and yet I couldn’t care less because it’s smart, funny, and endearing at nearly every turn.
My new found love of Parks and Recreation now officially on the record, this week’s Top 5 includes The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug interviews and review, the first trailer for director Gareth Edwards‘ Godzilla, a recap of Steve’s visit to the set of Paul W.S. Anderson‘s Pompeii, several bits of news out of the Terminator reboot camp, and the first trailer for The Wachowski Siblings‘ latest Jupiter Ascending. What comes next is a brief recap and link to each of the above.
While we’ve been reporting on who might be playing Sarah Connor in the upcoming Terminator reboot, Terminator: Genesis, we might have an actor for her son…Her much older son. According to Deadline, Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) is in talks to play John Connor, the robot-killing messiah-figure of the post-apocalyptic future. As we previously reported, Brie Larson (Short Term 12) and Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) are the frontrunners for Sarah Connor, and since they’re both younger than Clarke by about two decades, there’s clearly some time travelin’ going on. I really hope that at one point, John Connor yells at his mom, “You’re not the boss of me!” and runs to his room.
Hit the jump for more. Terminator: Genesis is set for July 1, 2015. There’s also a TV series in the works that will be based on the new movie.
The Planet of the Apes franchise was successfully rebooted a couple of years ago with director Rupert Wyatt’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. The undisputed standout of the film was Andy Serkis’ brilliant portrayal of the ape Caesar, gorgeously brought to life by the people at Weta. Fox’s sequel to that film, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, is one of the big summer tentpoles of 2014, and the film debuted some footage at Comic-Con in Hall H earlier today. During the panel, director Matt Reeves (Let Me In) and cast members Jason Clarke, Keri Russell, and Serkis talked about focusing the story on Caesar, moving forward with a series in which the final outcome is already known, and much, much more.
Hit the jump to read my full recap of the Comic-Con panel for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.
Director Baltasar Kormakur (Contraband, The Deep) may have rounded up a group of doomed mountaineers. According to Deadline, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Jason Clarke are in talks to star in Everest. The film is based on the disastrous 1996 expedition that left eight climbers dead, and was chronicled in Jon Krakauer’s excellent non-fiction novel, Into Thin Air. This adaptation will reportedly be “be sourced from various books and interviews with survivors.” One of the fascinating aspects of the climb is that it claimed both novice and experienced climbers, and I’m curious to find out if the actors are playing real people or amalgams.
Earlier this year, we reported that Christian Bale was going to play the lead role, but Deadline makes no mention of him, so presumably he’s out. The production is eyeing a November start date. It’s also worth noting that there’s another Everest movie in production (also titled “Everest”) with Doug Liman attached to direct, but we haven’t heard anything new on the project in almost a year. That movie is about George Mallory, and his three attempts in the early 1920s to become the first man to climb the world’s highest mountain.
Here’s today’s latest casting announcements:
Hit the jump for more on each picture.