David S. Goyer to Direct THE BREACH for Lionsgate

by     Posted 79 days ago


David S. Goyer has set up his next directorial effort, but it won’t be a DC Comics property and it won’t be at Warner Bros.  Heat Vision reports that Goyer will helm an adaptation of the Patrick Lee novel The Breach for Lionsgate, which is an action-thriller that follows a former cop and ex-convict who stumbles across a crashed 747 and a mysterious artifact that will determine the fate of the future.  Goyer has been developing this project for some time with producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura, but it now looks to be moving forward fairly quickly.

Goyer originated the take on Superman that resulted in Man of Steel and penned the screenplay for the film, and he’s been seen as the man steering some of WB’s DC Comics adaptations.  He wrote the script for the untitled Man of Steel follow-up involving Batman and Superman, but the project recently enlisted Oscar-winning Argo scribe Chris Terrio to do further work on the script.  Hit the jump for more on the project and Goyer’s current slate.

Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talks TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION: “It’s Definitely Not a Reboot”

by     Posted 93 days ago

lorenzo-di-bonaventura-Transformers Age of Extinction

We’re less than six months out from the release of Michael Bay’s Transformers: Age of Extinction, but we don’t know too much about the plot of the film just yet.  Since a tight lid is being kept on the film’s details, we’ll take whatever bits and pieces we can get.  In a recent interview for Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, which he also produced, Lorenzo di Bonaventura gave a couple behind-the-scenes details on the production of the fourth Transformers film.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say.

Starring Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Kelsey GrammerStanley TucciT.J. MillerTitus WelliverHan Geng, Sophia Myles, and Li Bingbing, Transformers: Age of Extinction opens in theaters on June 27, 2014.

Producers Lorenzo di Bonaventure and Mace Neufeld Talk JACK RYAN, the Title, Test Screenings, How Making Movies Has Changed, Future Projects, and More

by     Posted 95 days ago


Now playing in theaters and IMAX is director Kenneth Branagh’s Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.  Based on the Tom Clancy character, the original story follows Jack Ryan (played by Chris Pine) as he uncovers a financial terrorist plot.  Starring alongside Pine is Kevin Costner and Keira Knightley with Branagh as the film’s antagonist.

A few days ago I landed an exclusive interview with producers Lorenzo di Bonaventure and Mace Neufeld.  They talked about how making movies has changed over the past few years, the Jack Ryan test screening and how it possibly influenced the final release, who they invite to friends and family screenings, the title Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit and if they had any alternate titles that were almost used, filming in London, the casting process, and future projects like The EqualizerG.I. Joe 3 and Red 3.  Hit the jump for what he had to say.

Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Kenneth Branagh, and Producers Mace Neufeld and Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talk JACK RYAN: SHADOW RECRUIT

by     Posted 99 days ago


Tom Clancy’s iconic spy returns to the big screen in Jack Ryan:  Shadow Recruit, a briskly-paced, smart and suspenseful action-thriller directed by Kenneth Branagh who invents a fresh story for the 21st century while staying true to the mythologyWhen a Russian oligarch (Branagh) attempts to trigger a sophisticated act of financial-based terrorism, Ryan (Chris Pine) must turn his counter-terrorism theories into action.  In a world where all motives are suspect and no one can be trusted, every perilous move he makes has world-altering consequences.  Opening January 17th, the film also stars Kevin Costner and Keira Knightley.

At a recent press conference,  Pine, Costner, Branagh, and producers Mace Neufeld and Lorenzo di Bonaventura talked about contemporizing Clancy’s character, what Pine brought to the role, the film’s franchise potential, how Costner’s mentor role differed from its typical portrayal in the spy genre, and the pleasures and challenges for Branagh of directing a tale on global espionage with great actors and exploring the complex threats of a new world order while also respecting the traditional values of its everyday hero.  Branagh and Costner also revealed the real-life mentors like Sean Connery who influenced their careers, and Costner discussed his career longevity and upcoming films, 3 Days to Kill and Black and White.  Hit the jump to read the interview.


by     Posted 102 days ago


Available via Netflix Watch Instantly as of late December, last weekend I finally got the chance to check out writer/director Joe Swanberg‘s romantic comedy Drinking Buddies. I should disclaim that it’s near impossible for me to be objective when talking about Swanberg given that he’s a fellow Southern Illinois University alum and few things make me prouder than a Saluki film student enjoying success in the industry. That out of the way, I enjoyed the heck out of Drinking Buddies. Much has been made of the film’s stellar cast and I won’t try and dispute those claims at all. As someone who has never watched a minute of Fox’s New Girl, I loved Jake Johnson‘s turn in the pic and I bought he and Olivia Wilde‘s romantic chemistry hook, line, and sinker. As for Anna Kendrick and Ron Livingston? Lets just say that I love each of them in almost everything and this is no exception. All in all, Buddies is a funny, sweet, realistic teetering on the verge of understated look at the universal concept of being just friends.

Instant stream recommendations aside, this week’s Top 5 includes our Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit set visit coverage, the first look at the Marvel One-Shot All Hail the King starring Ben Kingsley, a set visit recap for Muppets Most Wanted, some villain rumors surrounding Batman vs. Superman, and Adam’s latest installment of Oscar Beat that breaks down the guild nods and what they could mean for Oscar season. Like you might expect, a brief recap and link to each of the above can be found after the jump.

Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talks the Challenge of Rebooting the Franchise, Casting Chris Pine, and More on the Set of JACK RYAN: SHADOW RECRUIT

by     Posted 107 days ago


As I’ve said many times, while it’s always great to talk to actors, if you really want to find out why certain decisions were made on a film, you always want to talk to the director and the producers.  In the case of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, the set of which I visited in 2012, the one who provided a ton of information was Lorenzo di Bonaventura (who also produced the Transformers franchise, RedRed 2Salt, The Last StandSide EffectsG.I. Joe, and many more).

During an extended group interview on set, di Bonaventura talked about the challenge of rebooting the franchise, why they chose Kenneth Branagh and Chris Pine, how Jack Ryan is a contemporary film that addresses the economic uncertainty and fears in a post-9/11 world, why the film takes place in Moscow and the reasons for filming in London, the action sequences, the kind of villain Branagh plays, and so much more.  Hit the jump to check it out.

28 WEEKS LATER Director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo to Helm New Adaptation of PET SEMATARY

by     Posted 174 days ago


Since his 2011 film Intruders, director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo has been bouncing around reboots.  A couple years ago, he was attached to direct a reboot of The Crow and Highlander, but ended up dropping out of both.  Now he’s headed toward yet another tested property.  According to Variety, he will stick with the horror genre to direct a remake of Paramount’s Pet Sematary.  Based on the novel by Stephen King, the story is about a family that moves in to a home located next to a cemetery (always a bad idea), and they discover that the cemetery can bring its buried creatures back from the dead.  A remake has been kicking around for the past several years, and at one point Alexandre Aja (Piranha 3D) was in talks to directMary Lambert‘s 1989 adaptation grossed $57 million on a $11 million budget.  She then directed the sequel, Pet Sematary II, but it didn’t have the same level of success as its predecessor.

There are no details about how Fresnadillo and producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura plan to proceed, but perhaps they should look at the recent version of Stephen King’s Carrie and be careful.  When it comes to remakes, “sometimes dead is better.”

Vin Diesel to Produce and Star in Potential Sci-Fi Action Franchise SOLDIERS OF THE SUN

by     Posted 252 days ago


While Vin Diesel already has one sci-fi action franchise under his belt, it appears that he’s keen on adding another to his roster.  The Riddick star is teaming up with Grace of Monaco screenwriter Arash Amel to create an original sci-fi action franchise called Soldiers of the Sun.  Per THR, the story takes place “in a post-apocalyptic future and focuses on a squad of soldiers that searches for a fabled city of gold while on a tour of duty in Mexico liberating it from an alien race known as Orcs.”  Diesel is producing the film alongside Samantha Vincent and Lorenzo di Bonaventura (Transformers), and the plan is to launch another ensemble franchise akin to the incredibly popular Fast & Furious series.  Hit the jump for more. 

Paramount Greenlights G.I. JOE 3; Producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura Talks His Ideas for Sequel

by     Posted 1 year, 23 days ago


G.I. Joe: Retaliation opened to the second-biggest Easter weekend box office, so it looks like the Joes and Cobra are going to live to duke it out another day.  According to Variety, Paramount has greenlit G.I. Joe 3.  While a third G.I. Joe wasn’t in too much doubt, announcing the sequel the Sunday after Retaliation‘s release is a big vote of confidence from the studio rather than a “Let’s wait to see how well it does on DVD.”

There are no other details about the third installment other than the obvious assumption that it will be in 3D.  Hopefully, they won’t clear the board again when it comes to the cast, and hold on to Dwayne Johnson as their charming and charismatic protagonist.  Hit the jump for what producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura is considering for G.I. Joe 3.

TOP 5: THE WOLVERINE Trailers, G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, First Trailer and Poster for WHITE HOUSE DOWN, PAIN & GAIN, THE HOST Interviews

by     Posted 1 year, 24 days ago


Before I dive into the main topic of this week’s opening paragraph, just a quick disclaimer that the Top 5 will be taking a week off next Saturday to accommodate the first, and perhaps only, trip to Hawaii I will ever take. Here’s to hoping it’s less awkward but equally as life-changing and Kristen Bell/Mila Kunis-filled as Forgetting Sarah Marshall depicted. That said, while it fell just short of the cut this week, I still want to draw attention to the first trailer for director Adam Wingard‘s You’re Next that debuted on Thursday. As a horror fan, I’m always excited when a new entry in the genre gets lauded from both sides of the aisle (horror fans and those who aren’t as giddy about movies that make them think twice about turning out the lights). As far as I’m concerned, August 23rd can’t get here soon enough.

All Hawaii and horror fanboy talk aside, this week’s list offers up the first trailer(s) for The Wolverine, interviews with Dwayne Johnson and more for G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the first trailer and posters for White House Down, a new red-band trailer for Pain & Gain, and The Host interviews with Saoirse Ronan and more. As you’re probably expecting, a brief recap and link to all of the above can be found after the jump.

Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talks G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, What He’d Like to See in G.I. JOE 3, Filming at NASA, JACK RYAN, RED 2, and Much More

by     Posted 1 year, 25 days ago


Jon M. Chu’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation is now playing in theaters.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.  G.I. Joe: Retaliation stars Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum,  D.J. Cotrona, Elodie YungRay ParkByung-hun Lee, Ray Stevenson, Walton Goggins, RZA and Adrianne Palicki For more on the film, here’s clips, images, on set interviews, and all our previous coverage.

Last weekend, I sat down with producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura for an extended interview.  Over the past few days we’ve posted what he said about Jack Ryan and Red 2, an adaptation of the Vince Flynn novel American Assassin and the true story Deepwater Horizon.  But that was just the tip of the iceberg, because we also talked about making G.I. Joe, the nine-minute dialogue-free action sequence featuring Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes, the 3D post conversion, changes from the first film, the rumored reshoots, what it was like to film at NASA, how involved Hasbro is with the project, and what he’d like to see in G.I. Joe 3 if they make it.  In addition, we also talked about how the collapsing home video market has changed the way movies are made, the lack of risk-taking with regards to the material that studios are choosing to make, the difficulty of selling sci-fi and the key to landing audience interest, whether he’s read any great scripts recently, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.


by     Posted 1 year, 28 days ago


Though producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura is best known for his huge tentpole films like the Transformers franchise and the G.I. Joe series, his resume is also filled out with more character-centric pics like Side Effects and Red.  Steve recently spoke with di Bonaventura in anticipation of G.I. Joe: Retaliation and got updates from the producer on a number of upcoming projects, and today we’re sharing what the producer had to say about a couple of “smaller” films that he’s producing: an adaptation of the Vince Flynn novel American Assassin and the true story Deepwater Horizon.

American Assassin tells the story of a college scholar and athelete who becomes a relentless anti-terrorism agent for the CIA, while Deepwater Horizon is a feature film based on the events of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil rig disaster that killed 11 people and injured 16 others.  Di Bonaventura gave an update on the progress of American Assassin and talked about his passion for Deepwater Horizon, which he likens to A Perfect Storm.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say about these two projects as well as the hostage rescue film The Mission.

Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura Talks JACK RYAN and RED 2; Says JACK RYAN Deals with Contemporary Issues

by     Posted 1 year, 29 days ago


Lorenzo di Bonaventura is certainly one of the more prolific producers working today.  The man is juggling a few different franchises at the moment, including Transformers and G.I. Joe, and he has two other highly anticipated films opening later this year.  Steve recently sat down with the producer to talk about G.I. Joe: Retaliation, but di Bonaventura also spoke a bit about the action-comedy sequel Red 2 and Kenneth Branagh’s thriller Jack Ryan.  Di Bonaventura talked about the new cast additions for Red 2 and his reaction to seeing the film, and he had nothing but praise for Chris Pine’s work as the titular character in Jack Ryan, also talking about the connection between this new film and the previous iterations of the Jack Ryan character.  Hit the jump to read on.

New Extended Clip and Featurette for G.I. JOE: RETALIATION

by     Posted 1 year, 34 days ago


Paramount has released a new four-minute extended clip and featurette for Jon M. Chu’s upcoming sequel G.I. Joe: Retaliation.  The clip showcases the an action sequence with a shit ton of ninjas that takes place on the side of a mountain, while the featurette focuses on the numerous vehicles and weapons that are used in the film.  The sequel’s story finds the Joes disbanded and outnumbered as they must square off against not only the Cobras, but also threats within their own government.

Hit the jump to watch the clip and featurette, and if you missed any of Steve’s set visit coverage be sure to check out 25 things to know & video blog recap, along with his interviews with Dwayne Johnson, Byung-hun Lee, Ray Park, Elodie Yung, D.J. Cotrona, producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura, and ChuG.I. Joe: Retaliation opens in 3D on March 28th.

TOP 5: VERONICA MARS Gets Kickstarted, G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Set Visit, KICK-ASS 2 Trailer, JURASSIC PARK 4 Names Director, SXSW 2013 Coverage

by     Posted 1 year, 38 days ago


I’ve patiently waited for the opportunity to include Veronica Mars in the Top 5. As one of my favorite pop culture artifacts, I’m thrilled that this past week has finally afforded me the chance. That said, I’ll reserve any and all debate regarding the impact and merit of its now famed Kickstarter campaign for after the jump. For now, I’ll just say that, as much as I loved the show, I didn’t feel shortchanged by its somewhat abrupt finale. Moreover, I never felt like I needed a movie to bring some sort of closure to that world and its characters. Don’t get me wrong, by series end I wanted more VM in my life. But maybe that’s a good thing. Looking back I’d much prefer a series leave me wanting more than continually ask me back every week when it can barely muster even a shadow of its former self (cough…The Office…cough).

In addition to more Mars talk, this week’s collection also includes our G.I. Joe: Retaliation set visit, the first red-band trailer for Kick-Ass 2, Jurassic Park 4 naming its director, and all of our SXSW 2013 coverage to date. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each.

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