Here’s today’s latest casting news:
- Katie Holmes (Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark) will join Phillip Noyce’s adaptation of Lois Lowry’s novel, The Giver, starring Jess Bridges, Meryl Streep, Alexander Skarsgard and Brenton Thwaites.
- Rosario Dawson (Trance) is in talks to join Aaron Eckhart in Brad Peyton’s micro-budget horror picture, Incarnate, from Blumhouse Productions.
- Saxon Sharbino (I Spit on Your Grave) has joined Gil Kenan’s Poltergeist film, starring Sam Rockwell and Rosemarie DeWitt. [Update: Jane Adams (Hung) has also joined the film.]
- Natalie Martinez (Under the Dome) has landed a lead role in Sean Parker’s thriller, Home Invasion.
Hit the jump for more on each announcement.
Actor Christian Camargo, whom many remember from a crucial arc in the first season of the Showtime series Dexter, is gearing up to make his directorial debut with an ambitious modern retelling of Anton Checkhov’s The Seagull, and he’s got a stellar cast in tow. Variety reports that Katie Holmes, William Hurt, Allison Janney, Russell Means, Jean Reno, Mark Rylance and Juliet Rylance are all in various stages of negotiations to join the ensemble cast. The film will take place in rural New England “where reckless desire wreaks havoc over Memorial Day weekend as a family confronts the volatile and fragile nature of love.”
West Wing vet Janney will play a movie star based on the Seagull role of Irina, Hurt will play her ailing brother, and Holmes will play “the temperamental daughter of the estate’s caretaker.” I haven’t read The Seagull, but I’m impressed by the cast Camargo has assembled here and I’m eager to see what this re-imagining has in store. Camargo wrote the script himself and production is set to get underway this summer. Hit the jump to read a synopsis for The Seagull.
Well this is quite something. The “Adam Sandler plays a brother and sister” movie Jack and Jill has just made cinematic history: the “comedy” swept literally every single category of the Razzie Awards, which honor the worst in cinematic achievement. Sandler took home Worst Actor and Worst Actress, Al Pacino nabbed Worst Supporting Actor, and the film itself was honored with a triple Worst Couple for Sandler and Katie Holmes, Sandler and Pacino, and Sandler and Sandler. All in all, it was a pretty great/terrible night for Adam Sandler.
Hit the jump to see the full list of nominees that Jack and Jill bested in each category. I keep hoping in vain that the actor will try his hand at drama again, but Grown Ups 2 is on the horizon and this unfunny streak appears to have no end in sight. As such, I’m assuming this isn’t the last time we see Sandler’s name on a Razzie list.
Adam Sandler had a moment there where he seemed to have found what made him a great funnyman and showed that he had acting chops. And though he’d been great before, that moment was around 2008 and 2009 when he made You Don’t Mess With the Zohan and Funny People, but since then he seems to have regressed. After Funny People didn’t work, he’s now making the movies he made fun of in Funny People. Sandler churns out a movie or two a year with his crew of regulars (which includes director Dennis Dugan, Allen Covert, Nick Swarsdon, Jonathan Loughran, Peter Dante and a peppering of his old SNL chums), and in Jack and Jill all the familiar faces show up while Sandler plays twins – with one of the twins being a girl! Cross-dressing is an old comic trope, but Sandler and company do little with it. The film’s saving grace is Al Pacino playing himself. Our review of Jack and Jill on Blu-ray follows after the jump.
It’s amazing that a story about meeting the mother of one man’s children has lasted for seven seasons and the kids hearing the story haven’t gotten up to leave the room, but How I Met Your Mother is still going strong. And this season, the writers are throwing back to a character referenced only in the comedy series’ first season and quite a big name has landed the role. Vulture has learned that Katie Holmes will be the infamous Slutty Pumpkin. Fans of the series should remember Halloween harlequin as a potential love interest Ted (Josh Radnor) once met at a Halloween party, but lost touch with eventually. This will be Holmes’ first TV appearance since a guest role on Eli Stone in 2008 and creator Craig Thomas says, “Katie is a lovely and talented actress, which is why we’ve saved for her perhaps the most classily named character in our show’s history.” Should be a fun role for Holmes and an interesting time for Ted, but when the hell is the mother of his children going to show up?
If you’re just tuning in, a few months back we started the weekly “Top 5″ feature as a way of aggregating all of what we deem to be our best, most relevant coverage from the preceding week into one place. The hope is that you, the reader, will have already scoped all of this material out and shared it with your millions of friends (either real, virtual, or both). However, if for whatever reason some of it has fallen through the cracks, you can come here, check it out, and then share it with all of your friends (again, either real, virtual, or both). That in mind…
In this week’s installment, you’ll find all of our coverage from Steve’s Underworld: Awakening set visit and Disney’s D23 Expo, interviews for the Guillermo del Toro produced horror flick Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and the Paul Rudd comedy Our Idiot Brother, and a slightly improved, slightly less puppet-friendly version of Yoda in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Check out brief recaps and links to all of the above after the jump.
I’m an easy scare. I tend not to seek out horror movies because the idea of being hit by jump scares doesn’t appeal to me. Troy Nixey’s Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark goes after gothic, psychological horror with a haunted house/monster movie vibe and that’s usually the way the genre works for me. But despite the exquisite art direction and cinematography, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark is a horror movie that rarely conjures of any sense of dread or terror.
FilmDistrict has released a new red band trailer for the horror remake Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark just before it hits theaters this weekend. There’s no gore or nudity, so I can’t point to the specifics that make it red band. (Maybe acute creepiness?) You get a really good look at the creatures, which are always a treat when Guillermo del Toro’s involved. He’s producing here, and co-wrote the screenplay with Matthew Robbins (Mimic); Troy Nixey directed.
The story centers on an architect (Guy Pearce), his new girlfriend (Katie Holmes), and his daughter (Bailee Madison) during the restoration of Blackwood Manor, a Gothic mansion infested by “an army of beady-eyed, sharp-clawed monsters emerge, small in size but endless in number: the homunculi.” Watch the trailer after the jump.
Guillermo del Toro is a fascinating and imaginative filmmaker with a macabre aesthetic who loves to populate his films with mysterious creatures that exist only in a fantastical realm. His latest project, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, which he co-wrote and produced, is inspired by a 1973 telefilm that he considers one of the scariest movies he ever saw as a kid. The remake follows Sally (Bailee Madison), a precocious young girl who moves to Rhode Island to live with her father (Guy Pearce) and his new girlfriend (Katie Holmes) in the 19th-century mansion they are restoring. When Sally stumbles upon the mansion’s hidden basement, she unwittingly unleashes something so terrible that everyone’s life is put in grave danger.
At a recent roundtable interview, we talked with del Toro and Holmes about the movie and their love of the horror genre. Del Toro told us what inspired him to use a younger protagonist in the remake, how he collaborated with director Troy Nixey on the film’s visual style, and why he thinks the idea of a tooth fairy is a very creepy concept. Holmes discussed what she did to prepare for her role, how her experience as a mother influenced the emotional arc of her character, and why she liked del Toro’s treatment of the female characters. They also updated us on what they have coming up next. Del Toro is looking forward to helming the upcoming alien invasion flick, Pacific Rim, this Fall, while Holmes described her roles in The Son of No One, Jack and Jill, and Responsible Adults. Check out the interview after the jump.
With the weekly “Top 5″ feature now in full-swing, I feel obliged to remind readers that these are indeed meant to synthesize what we perceive as our top five pieces into a recap article. We do this with the hopes that readers will not miss out on some of the best stuff we have to offer on a weekly basis. This in mind, if you are an extremely loyal visitor (for which, we say a sincere “thank you”) who is 100% positive that you’ve read all we have to offer, the recaps may seem somewhat redundant. The best remedy for such redundancy is to steer clear of the jump. Otherwise…
…In this week’s “Top 5″ you’ll find us musing on which director might take over the Transformers franchise, our Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows set visit and video blog, our take on the next Star Trek video game acting as canon, the first look at Nori, Ori, and Dori in The Hobbit, and Steve’s video interview with Guillermo del Toro and Katie Holmes. Hit the jump for brief recaps and links to each.
With the Kevin James “fat guy gets hit in the head with various objects” comedy Zookeeper opening today, it’s time for the trailer for an equally terrible-looking movie: the Adam Sandler-starred Jack and Jill. In the film, Sandler plays the dual roles of twin brother and sister Jack and Jill. Katie Holmes and Al Pacino (yes, that Al Pacino) co-star. The trailer looks like it could actually be a semi-amusing SNL sketch, but the premise holding up for a feature-length film seems more like a test designed to see how you fare under torture.
Hit the jump to watch the trailer. Directed by Dennis Dugan, Jack and Jill also stars Shaquille O’Neal, Dana Carvey, Regis Philbin and Santiago Segura. The film hits theaters November 11th.
Opening in late August is director Troy Nixey’s Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. Based on the 1973 telefilm, the remake was written by Guillermo del Toro and Matthew Robbins and “the story follows Sally (Bailee Madison), a young girl who moves to Rhode Island to live with her father (Guy Pearce) and his new girlfriend (Katie Holmes) in the 19th Century mansion they are restoring. While exploring the house, Sally starts to hear voices coming from creatures in the basement whose hidden agenda is to claim her as one of their own.” Here’s the trailer. In addition, I saw the movie at this year’s Los Angeles Film Festival and thought it was really well done and it’s definitely recommended.
The day after the premiere I got to sit down with del Toro and Holmes. While I was going to hold the interview until closer to release, with both revealing they’ll be at this year’s Comic-Con, I figure it’s better to post it now. During the interview we talked about making the film, how there are no cheap scares, and what’s the secret to making the characters stay in the house in a believable way. In addition, we talked about Comic-Con, Doug Liman’s Go, Pacific Rim and karaoke. Hit the jump to watch.
As the Cannes Film Festival heats up, plenty of casting deals are getting done. We’ve combined some of the latest casting stories into one handy article for your viewing pleasure. First up, Colin Firth and Emily Blunt have signed on to star in a dark comedy from director Dante Ariola and written by Becky Johnston. According to Deadline, “Firth plays a man who hates his job and is hated by his ex-wife and son. Feeling he missed his one shot at living the dream, he fakes his death and buys a new identity. Along the way he meets a woman (Blunt) who is also trying to leave her past behind. The pair break into empty homes and pose as the absent owners. The two find a kindship despite all the lying.” I’m a little giddy at the thought of Firth and Blunt playing off each other so hopefully we’ll see this project sooner rather than later.
Hit the jump for more casting news regarding Katie Holmes, Chase Crawford, Dennis Quaid, Orlando Bloom, Nick Nolte, Stanley Tucci, and Cristiana Capotondi.
Before Miramax underwent a new business deal, Troy Nixey’s Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark was scheduled to open on January 21, 2011 (you can see the teaser trailer here). Unfortunately, in October the Guillermo del Toro-produced/co-written horror flick dropped off the schedule and went into release-limbo. THR now reports that FilmDistrict has come to the rescue and will distribute the film on August 12th. However, the film will have some stiff competition. Also getting released on that date is 30 Minutes or Less, the new comedy from Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer that stars Jesse Eisenberg, Aziz Ansari, and Danny McBride; and Tate Taylor’s adaptation of The Help starring Emma Stone, Viola Davis, and Bryce Dallas Howard.
Hit the jump for a synopsis of Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, which stars Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce, and Bailee Madison.
In January, we found out that The History Channel had decided not to air The Kennedys, an 8-part miniseries focusing on the life and times of the Kennedy family with an all-star cast including cast that includes Greg Kinnear (John F. Kennedy), Katie Holmes (Jackie Kennedy), Barry Pepper (Robert F. Kennedy) and Tom Wilkinson (Joe Kennedy). There was hope the controversial miniseries, which has been criticized for its negative portrayal of the iconic political family, to air on Showtime but the cable network passed. Now THR reports The Kennedys has landed a premiere at ReelzChannel, a cable channel mostly dedicated to talking about and going behind the scenes of various movies. Hit the jump for more.