Director Robert Stromberg just took a major step forward in assembling his cast for Disney’s live-action fantasy Maleficent. Angelina Jolie is already set as the titular lead in this retelling of the Sleeping Beauty tale from the villain’s point of view, and we recently learned that District 9 star Sharlto Copley had joined the cast as the male lead. Now it appears that Imelda Staunton (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix), Miranda Richardson (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire), Kenneth Cranham (Hot Fuzz), Sam Riley (On the Road), and Lesley Manville (Another Year) have been added to the roster. Hit the jump for more.
[Update: Variety adds that India Eisley (The Secret Life of the American Teenager) will play a younger version of Jolie's character in the opening sequence of the film.]
Television’s Homeland star Damian Lewis has been cast in the adaptation of Romeo and Juliet directed by Carlo Carlei (The Flight of the Innocent). Production is currently underway in Italy, with Paul Giamatti recently joining as Friar Lawrence and with Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth playing the star-crossed lovers. Lewis has been cast as Lord Capulet in the strict adaptation written by Oscar-winner Julian Fellowes of Gosford Park and Downton Abbey fame. The film, aimed at drawing in a younger audience, also stars Ed Westwick as Tybalt and Kodi Smit-McPhee as Benvolio. Hit the jump to see who else has recently joined the cast of Romeo and Juliet.
While different folks have their own dates for when awards season has officially “begun”, I set it at the date the National Board of Review announces their picks for the year. In two of the past three years, the NBR’s pick for Best Picture has gone on to win the Oscar. However, last year’s NBR winner, Up in the Air, went home empty-handed.
This year, the NBR has given the top prize to The Social Network. The film also picked up the prizes for Best Director (David Fincher), Best Actor (Jesse Eisenberg), and Best Adapted Screenplay (Best Actor). Other winners included Lesley Manville getting Best Actress for Another Year, Christian Bale winning Best Supporting Actor for The Fighter, and Jacki Weaver receiving Best Supporting Actress for Animal Kingdom. Hit the jump for the full list of awards, including the National Board of Review’s Top 11 films, Top 10 Independent Films, Top 6 Foreign Films, and Top 6 Documentaries.
If you’re attending this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, you may want to take some time to seek out Mike Leigh’s Another Year. It doesn’t have the star-power of films like The Town or Black Swan, but it looks like a sweet little movie. It also received positive notices when it played at Cannes earlier this year. The film centers on “A happily married, middle-aged couple who are visited by a number of unhappy and lonely friends who use them as confidantes. When an unmarried friend falls for their young son, they watch as events unfold.”
The film stars Jim Broadbent, Ruth Sheen, and Lesley Manville. Hit the jump to check out the international trailer and the official description. The Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 9 – 19th. Another Year opens in limited release on December 29th.