Screenwriter Max Landis Gives Status Update on CHRONICLE 2; Says It’s a “Really Dark Script”

by     Posted 1 year, 105 days ago

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Though the news that 20th Century Fox was moving forward on a sequel to Chronicle came rather quickly after Josh Trank’s film performed very well at the box office, development on the follow-up has been fairly slow.  Screenwriter Max Landis returned to pen the script, but it seemed unlikely that Trank would return to direct given that he’s next helming The Fantastic Four and is also attached to a Venom movie and Shadow of the Colossus.  Last we heard re: Chronicle 2, Landis’ father John Landis claimed that Fox wasn’t happy with Max’s script and wanted “more of the same.”

Now Max Landis himself has spoken up regarding the status of Chronicle 2 and also directly addressing his father’s comments.  Hit the jump to read on.

John Landis Says Fox Isn’t Thrilled with Max Landis’ Script for CHRONICLE 2, Wants More of the Same

by     Posted 1 year, 285 days ago

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One of the more pleasant surprises of 2012 was director Josh Trank’s low-budget “superhero” film Chronicle.  The pic was a hit with audiences and critics alike, and Fox naturally tapped the first film’s scribe Max Landis to start work on a sequel earlier this year.  Shortly thereafter Landis teased the return of star Alex Russell in the follow-up, but since then word on Chronicle 2 has been quiet.  Now we may have an idea of why, as Landis’ father, filmmaker John Landis, recently revealed that Fox isn’t too keen on what Max Landis has cooked up for the sequel.  Hit the jump for more. 

Exclusive: John Landis Talks BURKE AND HARE, PSYCH and His Thoughts on AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON Remake

by     Posted 2 years, 319 days ago

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The black comedy Burke & Hare (currently available on VOD through SundanceNow and out in theaters on September 9th), from director John Landis, is about two 19th century grave robbers who find a lucrative business providing cadavers for an Edinburgh medical school. Selling dead bodies to medical schools became big business in the 1800s, and William Burke (Simon Pegg) and William Hare (Andy Serkis) saw an opportunity to make their fortunes. The only problem was that there weren’t any dead bodies to be found, so to meet the demand, the two men began to arrange a series of deadly “accidents,” securing a steady stream of bodies and the cash for them, but also drawing more attention than the pair would ever want.

During a recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, Landis (Animal House, Trading Places) talked about the serendipity that led to him directing Burke & Hare, making serial killers likeable leads for a romantic comedy, and making Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis an evil Laurel & Hardy, his direct approach with actors. He also talked about his thoughts on remakes, the possibility of someone doing their own take on An American Werewolf in London, doing a film adaptation of the farcical play The Rivals for his next project, and what led him to direct some episodes of the TV series Psych. Check out what he had to say after the jump:

John Landis Co-Writing New Horror Movie

by     Posted 2 years, 346 days ago

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While director John Landis famously helmed classic comedies like Animal House and The Blues Brothers, he also dipped his toe into the horror genre as the writer and director of the 1981 masterwork An American Werewolf in London. He’s yet to do another horror film, and recently while doing press for his upcoming black comedy Burke and Hare (starring Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis) he revealed that he’s currently in the process of writing a horror film with French filmmaker Alexandre Gavras. Hit the jump to see what Landis had to say.

ANIMAL HOUSE and THE BLUES BROTHERS Blu-ray Reviews

by     Posted 2 years, 349 days ago

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Let’s call it: Nation Lampoon’s Animal House and The Blues Brothers are the most influential comedies of their era, and two of the most influential comedies of all time. It’s doubtful anyone who makes comedies these days doesn’t revere these films, from Judd Apatow (considering Freaks and Geeks) to Todd Phillips (whose Road Trip is inarguably indebted).

The Blues Brothers was the first Saturday Night Live spin-off film, and Animal House launched John Belushi, which came out within weeks of Chevy Chase’s Foul Play, both of which showed that SNL could launch comedy stars, so everyone who came after owes to Animal House (which was a much bigger hit than Foul Play). And this is all due to one man: John Landis. Our reviews of the Blu-rays of Animal House and Blues Brothers follow after the jump.

Kenny Ortega to Direct Film Based Off of Michael Jackson’s THRILLER Music Video

by     Posted 3 years, 270 days ago

It’s been over a year now since Michael Jackson passed away, but Jackson’s popularity is showing no signs of slowing down.  Today, we have news that GK Films is developing a feature film based off of Jackson’s iconic music video, Thriller.  The film will be written by Jeremy Garelick (The Hangover) and will focus on “the song’s folklore, involving Vincent Price and the town he grew up in”. Kenny Ortega, who directed Jackson’s posthumous concert film This is It, has signed on to helm the film.  Hit the jump for a reminder of Thriller’s awesomeness along with some news on what other Jackson projects are in the works.

New Images from John Landis’ BURKE AND HARE Starring Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis

by     Posted 3 years, 271 days ago

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New images from John Landis’ Burke and Hare have gone online.  The film stars Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis as real-life 19th-century grave-robbers/murderers William Burke and William Hare.  I’ve got high hopes for this film since it’s not only the first feature film from Landis (who previously directed An American Werewolf in London and The Blues Brothers) in over a decade, but the cast includes not only the talents of Pegg and Serkis, but also of Isla Fisher, Tim Curry, Jessica Hynes, Christopher Lee, and Tom Wilkinson.

Hit the jump to check out the images and click here to see the trailer.  Burke and Hare is due out in the UK this Friday.  No word yet on a US release.

Trailer for John Landis’ BURKE AND HARE Starring Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis

by     Posted 3 years, 291 days ago

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The UK trailer for John Landis’ Burke and Hare has gone online.  The film stars Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis as real 19th century murderers William Burke and William Hare who began as modest grave robbers to earn a living but had to move on to killing when corpses weren’t readily available.  I’ve got high hopes for this flick since I’m a fan of not only Pegg and Serkis, but co-stars Tom Wilkinson, Jessica Hynes, and Isla Fisher.  Also, Landis did a little film you may have heard of called An American Werewolf in London.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer.  Burke and Hare opens on October 29th in the UK.

FUNNY FARM and SPIES LIKE US Blu-ray Reviews

by     Posted 4 years, 4 days ago

Before he was the scene-stealing old guy on NBC’s Community, Chevy Chase was one of the biggest movie stars on the planet. Between 1978’s Foul Play and 1989’s National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Chase reeled off a string of nearly 20 comedies, most of them big hits — and then he pissed it all away in a spectacular orgy of horrible flops that included Nothing but Trouble and Cops and Robbersons.

Now that Chevy’s making us laugh again, and the sting of his most egregious failures has worn off, Warner Bros. has decided to pull two of his movies from the vaults for its “Double Feature” series. They aren’t two of his best, unfortunately, but for filmgoers of a certain age, the Funny Farm/Spies Like Us two-fer will bring back plenty of (occasionally rather painful) memories.  More after the jump:

John Landis Still Working on Biopic of EC Comics Publisher and Co-Creator Bill Gaines

by     Posted 4 years, 67 days ago

Director John Landis still wants to make a film about Bill Gaines, the publisher and co-creator of EC Comics (Tales from the Crypt, Mad Magazine).  Deadline is reporting it as an exclusive, but the news actually broke over two years ago.  Granted a lot can happen in two years and it’s good to know that Landis still wants to make this movie.  The drama around Gaines isn’t so much personal, as much as it is a fascinating slice of history when the government cracked down on comic books due to the belief that they caused “juvenile delinquency.”  It wasn’t totally unfounded cause for concern. I’ve lost track of how many people have stabbed to death because of Archie over the years.

Landis is currently working on the dark romantic comedy Burke & Hare starring Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis as the two real-life graverobbers/murderers from 19th century Scotland.  Speaking about the film at Cannes, Landis described it as “a sweet and charming film about a couple of killers.”

Andy Serkis Interview – Talks THE HOBBIT, TINTIN, BURKE & HARE and SEX & DRUGS & ROCK & ROLL

by     Posted 4 years, 68 days ago

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Andy Serkis is in flux.  Again.  In an industry thick with top-flight thespians known for a complete immersion with each new role, the 46 year-old stands apart because of his whole-hearted embrace of new technology.  From his complex portrayals of Gollum in The Lord of The Rings trilogy and the title role in King Kong to his work as Captain Haddock in Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg’s upcoming The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn and his return to Middle Earth on The Hobbit films, no other actor has consistently morphed from project to project, over the past decade, with the same combination of acting ability and performance capture innovation.

However, the biggest innovation in Andy Serkis’ latest project, Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, is Serkis himself.  He reportedly lost nearly 30 pounds, worked out the right side of his body while letting his left side go weak and wore a leg caliper for months to mold himself into the polio-afflicted British punk icon Ian Dury.  His role off-camera also changed, as he conceived and shaped the film with the screenwriter Paul Viragh.  Add those responsibilities to his recently formed production company, a new performance capture studio/academy and you have a man in transition.

Collider caught up with Serkis for a revealing conversation about his changing career and his own background.  Hit the jump for the audio and transcription, along with plenty of stories on The Hobbit, Tintin, Burke & Hare, Steven Spielberg. Guillermo del Toro, John Landis and, of course, Peter Jackson.

First Official Image of Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis in John Landis’ BURKE & HARE

by     Posted 4 years, 122 days ago

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The first official image from the upcoming black comedy, Burke & Hare has just been released.

Directed by John Landis, the film stars Simon Pegg (Star Trek) and Andy Serkis (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy) in the title roles,  and is based on the true story of two 19th century serial murderers and grave robbers who discover the highly profitable business of providing cadavers to a medical school in Edinburgh, Scotland.

The film is currently in production and is slated to be released later this year. Burke & Hare also stars Isla Fisher, Tim Curry, John Cleese, and Tom Wilkinson. Now that’s a comedic movie line-up that we can all look forward to.

Hit the jump to check out the intriguing image from Empire Online and the complete synopsis.

New On-Set Images from BURKE AND HARE Starring Simon Pegg and Isla Fisher; and THE TOURIST Starring Johnny Depp

by     Posted 4 years, 144 days ago

For those who enjoy actors in-costume and out-of-character, Accidental Sexiness has new on-set images of Simon Pegg and Isla Fisher in John Landis’ Burke and Hare and Johnny Depp in Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck’s The Tourist.

With Burke and Hare (based on the true story of two men in 19th century Edinburgh who committed murders for the money they made selling the cadavers to medical schools), Ms. Fisher is wearing a lovely blue dress with matching blue-bonnet.  By her side is Mr. Pegg rocking a pair of muttonchops.  Keep in mind, that muttonchops in the 21st century can not be worn or grown.  They can only be rocked.

As for Mr. Depp in The Tourist (which is about an American tourist (Depp) drawn into a web of intrigue and danger by a female Interpol agent (Angelina Jolie) as she attempts to locate a criminal who was once her lover), he looks overjoyed to be filming by the Grand Canal in Venice.

Hit the jump to check out new photos from both films.  Also, click here for previous on-set images from Burke and Hare and click here for a shots of Angelina Jolie in The Tourist.

First Images of Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis in Director John Landis’ BURKE AND HARE

by     Posted 4 years, 149 days ago

The first images of Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis in director John Landis’ Burke and Hare have hit the net.  We can thank the production for filming on location in Edinburgh for the photos.  Starring Pegg, Serkis, Isla Fisher, Jessica Hynes, Tom Wilkinson, Hugh Bonneville, Tim Curry and Sir Christopher Lee, the movie follows two 19th century grave-robbers who started murdering folks so they could cash in on the cadaver money when they sold the corpses to doctors who wanted to study anatomy.  What’s also interesting about the film is…it’s based on real events.

According to the Daily Mail:

The real-life Burke and Hare, who hailed from Ireland, were responsible for the deaths of at least 17 people from 1827 until 1828.  After murdering their victims, the pair then went on to sell the bodies to Dr Robert Knox, who dissected them in his anatomy classes at Barclay’s anatomy school in Surgeon’s Square.

Hit the jump for some photos from the set:

Isla Fisher & Tom Wilkinson Join Simon Pegg & Andy Serkis in John Landis’ BURKE & HARE

by     Posted 4 years, 183 days ago

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Yesterday, we reported on a tweet by Simon Pegg that said David Tennant had been replaced by Andy Serkis in John Landis’ upcoming historical horror flick Burke & Hare.  However, Pegg quickly deleted his twitter post and we were left to wonder if he prematurely tweeted.  It happens to lots of guys.  And girls.  But Heat Vision now confirms that Serkis has replaced Tennant (who has moved off the project to join the upcoming NBC pilot Rex is Not My Lawyer); plus, Isla Fisher and Tom Wilkinson have also been cast.

Pegg and Serkis will play the 19th-century killers William Burke and William Hare, respectively, who started murdering folks so they could cash in on some sweet cadaver money when they sold the corpses to doctors who wanted to study anatomy.  Fisher will play Burke’s girlfriend, “an actress looking for a patron who might or might not be an accomplice to the murders.”  As for Wilkinson, he’ll play “Dr. Robert Knox, an anatomy lecturer looking for fresh corpses.”  And what ever Dr. Knox wants to use those corpses for is his business.

Burke & Hare is scheduled to begin filming on January 31st in Edinburgh and London.

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