Book to Screen: THE MAZE RUNNER Works But Can’t Compare to James Dashner’s Book

by     Posted 63 days ago

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First off, I enjoyed Maze Runner the movie quite a bit.  It’s got a great pace, stunning visuals and strong performances all-around, but there are some significant differences between the book and the film and, simply put, the book does it better.  One of the biggest challenges of adapting a book to film is condensing it and more so than ever when you’re working with a narrative that goes down in a brand new environment like The Glade.

Not only did director Wes Ball have to develop a Glade full of multidimensional characters, but he also had to set up a brand new world and convey the rules that govern it.  The situation is actually pretty straightforward – there are kids trapped in a maze and they have to figure out how to get out – but then you’re wondering, why are they there?  Who put them there?  What’s going on in the outside world?  It isn’t easy answering those questions in less than two hours and that’s where the movie pales in comparison to the book, but there are other elements that are strong enough to make The Maze Runner one of the more successful YA adaptations we’ve got.  Hit the jump for the ups and downs of the adaptation process.  Warning: There are major spoilers for the book and the movie in this feature. 

THE MAZE RUNNER Clip and Character Posters; Plus Additional Promos Featuring The Grievers

by     Posted 82 days ago

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If you’re going to survive The Maze Runner, you’ve got to follow the rules.  You’ve got to check out the map room, get your section assignment, gear up and only then can you run into the maze to try to find a way out.  And if that’s not hard enough, you’ve also got to make sure you make it back into The Glade before those doors close, otherwise, the Grievers will get you.

It’s always been clear that the James Dashner book has some serious big screen potential, but now that The Maze Runner promo material is pouring in ahead of the film’s September 19th release, it’s more evident than ever.  Hit the jump to catch a brand new The Maze Runner clip as well as some new promo videos and character posters, too.

THE MAZE RUNNER Featurette Introduces The Gladers

by     Posted 104 days ago

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Admittedly I was hoping this thing was “Meet the Gladers” as in meet the characters of the film, but it’s still nice to see how well the ensemble cast gets along.  Rather than introduce us to Thomas, Gally, Teresa, Minho and Newt, we get to hear about Dylan O’Brien, Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario, Ki Hong Lee and Thomas Brodie-Sangter’s experience making The Maze Runner, which apparently was a particularly enjoyable shoot.

The film marks Wes Ball’s feature directorial debut and he seems like he was pretty happy on set too, so hopefully the fun of making it winds up translating into a high quality film.  Check out the good times on set for yourself in The Maze Runner featurette after the jump.  The film is set to hit theaters on September 19th and also stars Blake Cooper, Aml Ameen and Patricia Clarkson.

Comic-Con: Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, James Dashner and Wes Ball Talk THE MAZE RUNNER, First Fan Reactions, and the Film’s Maturity

by     Posted 117 days ago

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Arriving in theaters September 19 is The Maze Runner, director Wes Ball‘s adaptation of James Dashner‘s hit YA novel of the same name. The story centers on a group of teenagers stuck in a place known only as “The Glade” with no memory of who they are or how they got there, and only one way out – through a giant, ever-shifting maze harboring deadly creatures called “Grievers”. The Maze Runner stars Dylan O’BrienKaya ScodelarioWill PoulterThomas Brodie-Sangster, and Patricia Clarkson.

Last weekend at Comicon I spoke with O’Brien, Scodelario, Poulter, Ball and Dashner about the film. They talked about the overwhelmingly positive reaction from the first fan screening, filming in the harsh Louisiana conditions, why the maturity of the film will surprise people, what they’re most excited for fans to see, and more. Check out what they had to say after the jump.

THE MAZE RUNNER Debuts Nine New Posters; Some With a Refreshingly Classic Look

by     Posted 119 days ago

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20th Century Fox has released nine new posters for The Maze Runner (this is in addition to the surprisingly good trailer that hit earlier today), director Wes Ball’s adaptation of the James Dashner novel.  The story revolves around a teenager who wakes up in the middle of a maze with no memory of who he is, surrounded by other teenage boys who also don’t know who they are, where they are, or what the maze is either.  As stakes continue to mount, though, they realize they must find a way out before it’s too late.

The character posters fall a little flat to me, but the conceptual ones out of this batch are really worth a look.  The film stars Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, and Patricia Clarkson. Hit the jump to check out the The Maze Runner posters.  The film opens in theaters on September 19th.

New MAZE RUNNER Trailer: Dylan O’Brien Seeks Answers as the Threat of Danger Grows

by     Posted 119 days ago

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20th Century Fox has released a new The Maze Runner trailer for director Wes Ball’s adaptation of the James Dashner novel.  The story revolves around a teenager who wakes up in the middle of a maze with no memory of who he is, surrounded by other teenage boys who also don’t know who they are, where they are, or what the maze is either.  As stakes continue to mount, though, they realize they must find a way out before it’s too late.  I’ll admit this film wasn’t really high on my radar, but after getting a further look at footage (including this trailer) at the Comic-Con panel last week, my interest has grown considerably.  There’s a strong central mystery at work, but I also like the Lord of the Flies aspect of the kids trapped inside the maze.  This trailer does a great job of teasing the large scope of the film and its more action-geared sequences, and I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what the full film entails.

Hit the jump to watch the new trailer.  The film stars Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, and Patricia ClarksonThe Maze Runner opens in theaters on September 19th.

Kaya Scodelario Talks Bonding with the Cast, Fan Reaction to the Film, the End of SKINS, and More on the Set of THE MAZE RUNNER

by     Posted 178 days ago

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Last summer, when The Maze Runner was filming outside New Orleans, I got to visit the set along with a few other reporters.  If you’re not familiar with James Dashner’s YA novel, it centers on a group of teens who appear in an area known as “The Glade” but have no memory when they wake up. The only way out appears to be through a shifting maze of massive walls that harbor dangerous creatures known as Grievers. Only one of the teens, Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), holds the secret to their escape. The Maze Runner also stars Kaya Scodelario, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, and Patricia Clarkson.

During a break in filming I was able to participate in a group interview with Kaya Scodelario.  She talked about being the only girl on set, being in her first big movie, her character’s relationship with the rest of the group, how she landed the role, what the cast had been doing off set, using an American accent, the end of Skins, working with director Wes Ball, and a lot more.  Hit the jump for what she had to say.

25 Images from Director Wes Ball’s THE MAZE RUNNER [Updated]

by     Posted 210 days ago

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Opening on September 19th is director Wes Ball‘s adaptation of James Dashner‘s young adult novel The Maze RunnerThe story centers on a group of teens who appear in an area known as “The Glade” but have no memory when they wake up.  The only way out appears to be through a shifting maze of massive walls that harbor dangerous creatures known as Grievers.  Only one of the teens, Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), holds the secret to their escape.  The Maze Runner also stars Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, and Patricia Clarkson.

I visited the set last year when the movie was filming outside New Orleans.  It looked like it could be very cool.  The embargo is lifted on my set visit, so I’ve rounded up all the Maze Runner movie images that have been released so far.  Check them out after the jump along with the trailer. [Update: We've added seven more new high-resolution images from the film after the jump.]

Scott and Brie in Talks for SLEEPING WITH OTHER PEOPLE; Walker Joins THE MOON AND THE SUN; Irons and Meyers to Lead THE SECRET SCRIPTURE

by     Posted 249 days ago

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We’ve a few casting stories for you today.  First up Adam Scott is planning to reteam with Bachelorette director writer-director Leslye Headland for her upcoming comedy Sleeping with Other PeopleThe movie stars Jason Sudeikis as “a womanizer who befriends a serial cheater; ultimately, the two develop a romantic attraction to each other.”  According to THR, Alison Brie is in talks to replace Kirsten Dunst, who had to drop out due to a scheduling conflict.  Headland notes that neither deal is done, and that “‘It’s not set in stone, kids.’ I’ve seen shit fall apart over less.”  As Harvey Weinstein‘s former assistant, she should know.  Hopefully, Scott and Brie will sign on; they’re both immensely talented and are terrific on two of TV’s best sitcoms, Parks and Recreation and Community, respectively.

Hit the jump for casting news on the fantasy feature The Moon and the Sun and the adaptation of the Irish novel, The Secret Scripture.

First Trailer THE MAZE RUNNER Starring Dylan O’Brien

by     Posted 253 days ago

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20th Century Fox has released the first trailer for Wes Ball‘s adaptation of The Maze Runner after premiering it during the latest episode of Teen Wolf.  The story centers on a group of teens who appear in an area known as “The Glade” but have no memory when they wake up.  The only way out appears to be through a shifting maze of massive walls that harbor dangerous creatures known as Grievers.  Only one of the teens, Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), holds the secret to their escape.  I am very intrigued by the premise and I am impressed by the visuals teased in the trailer.  The giant maze is menacing but worn—futuristic once the future has come and gone.

Will Poulter, Kaya Scodelario, Aml Ameen, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, and Patricia Clarkson also star in the adaptation of James Dashner‘s young adult novel.  The Maze Runner opens September 19.  Watch the trailer after the break.

Kaya Scodelario Talks THE TRUTH ABOUT EMANUEL, Working with Jessica Biel, Filming Underwater, THE MAZE RUNNER, and More

by     Posted 322 days ago

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From writer/director Francesca Gregorini, the indie drama The Truth About Emanuel tells the story of the troubled Emanuel (Kaya Scodelario), who becomes preoccupied with her mysterious new neighbor, Linda (Jessica Biel).  In offering to babysit her newborn, Emanuel unwittingly enters a world that blurs the line of fantasy and reality, and shows just how dangerous secrets can be.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, actress Kaya Scodelario talked about what attracted her to this project, how she got the role in spite of a very bad audition, why she identified with the character so easily, how she spent a lot of time working on the American accent, how great it was to collaborate with Francesca Gregorini, what it was like to shoot the underwater sequence, and working with co-star Jessica Biel.  She also talked about what made her want to be a part of The Maze Runner, adapted from the Young Adult novel of the same name, being the only girl working with a group of guys, and how much work she put into the physical side of the role, along with what being a part of the hit British TV series Skins has meant to her.  Check out what she had to say after the jump.

First Trailer for EMANUEL AND THE TRUTH ABOUT FISHES Starring Kaya Scodelario and Jessica Biel

by     Posted 1 year, 222 days ago

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The first trailer for Sundance entry Emanuel and the Truth about Fishes is now online.  Kaya Scodelario (Wuthering Heights) plays the titular character, a troubled girl who obsesses over a new neighbor (Jessica Biel) that looks just like her dead mother: “In offering to babysit her newborn, Emanuel unwittingly enters a fragile, fictional world, of which she becomes the gatekeeper.”  The tone chills, I am intrigued by the hints of the  “fragile, fictional world,” and I like hearing Scodelario try on her American accent.  But whenever Emanuel is released, I will go see it to find out how a young girl gets such an unusual name beyond the thematic resonance of “God is with us.”

Alfred Molina, Frances O’Connor, Jimmi Simpson, and Aneurin Barnard co-star in Francesca Gregorini‘s second feature.  Watch the trailer after the jump.

First Clips from Chan-wook Park’s STOKER, Starring Nicole Kidman, and EMANUEL AND THE TRUTH ABOUT FISHES, Starring Jessica Biel and Kaya Scodelario

by     Posted 1 year, 311 days ago

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The first clips have landed online for two Sundance 2013 premieres: Chan-wook Park’s Stoker, starring Nicole Kidman and Mia Wasikowska, and Francesca Gregorini’s Emanuel and the Truth About Fishes, starring Jessica Biel, Kaya Scodelario and Alfred Molina.  Both movies deal with issues of motherhood, though the first clip from Stoker reveals Kidman’s character as rather aggressively unstable while Biel’s character is merely a dead-ringer for the protag’s own dead mother.  Check out both clips after the jump (be forewarned: both clips are annoyingly set to auto-play).

Impressive New Trailer for Andrea Arnold’s WUTHERING HEIGHTS

by     Posted 2 years, 78 days ago

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A new trailer for Fish Tank writer/director Andrea Arnold’s adaptation of the Emily Bronte classic Wuthering Heights has landed online, and it’s wildly impressive.  For those unfamiliar with the source material, the story centers on the unresolved passion between Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, and how their love creates a storm of vengeance.  The atmosphere on display in this trailer evokes another recent (and brilliant) Bronte sister adaptation, Cary Fukunaga’s Jane Eyre, as we see a whirlwind of emotions between the leads Kaya Scodelario (Skins) and Jason Howson.  Arnold’s visuals are striking (the film’s aspect ratio is an unusual 1.37:1) and the trailer is accompanied by a stellar new song from Mumford & Sons, written specifically for this film.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer, and click here to check out Steve’s interview with Arnold from this year’s Sundance Film Festival.  The film was released in the UK last year but finally hits the U.S. in limited release early next month.

Kaya Scodelario to Replace Rooney Mara in EMANUEL AND THE TRUTH ABOUT FISHES

by     Posted 2 years, 347 days ago

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I invested in Kaya Scodelario stock after liking her work on Skins.  She seemed like the type of actor we would snatch up for studio fare.  And that day may come, as it has for fellow Skins actor Nicholas Hoult, who went on to roles in big budget movies like X-Men: First Class, Jack the Giant Killer, and the upcoming Mad Max reboot.  But after one dalliance with Clash of the Titans, Scodelario has been content with the indie world, starring in the opaque adaptation of Wuthering Heights and the upcoming terminal illness drama Now Is GoodVariety reports Scodelario has added another to the list, signing on to replace Rooney Mara as the lead Emanuel and the Truth About Fishes.

The script by director Francesca Gregorini (Tanner Hall) centers on Emanuel, “a troubled 17-year-old girl who babysits her new neighbor’s ‘baby,’ which is actually a very life-like doll.”  Oh, that’s creepy.  But I like it, especially after Lars and the Real Girl proved the premise is viable.  Mara is a tough loss, but the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo star is about to be swallowed up by the studio machine.  While she’s still an indie darling, Scodelario is a solid replacement.

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