McG Talks 3 DAYS TO KILL, Working with Kevin Costner, Practical Stunts, His “Explosive” SPRING AWAKENING Adaptation, SUPERNATURAL, and More

by     Posted 153 days ago

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Directed by McG and written by Luc Besson & Adi Hasak, the action-thriller 3 Days to Kill tells the story of Ethan Renner (Kevin Costner), an international spy who is trying to find the always balance between work life and home life.  Determined to give up his high-stakes life to finally build a closer relationship with his estranged wife and daughter, he must complete one last mission before he can leave his life of danger behind.  The film also stars Amber Heard, Hailee Steinfeld and Connie Nielsen.

At the film’s press day, McG spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about what drew him to this script, what makes Kevin Costner a credible action star, the biggest challenges with this production, overcoming his fear of flying to shoot in Paris, why he wanted to shoot these stunts practically, how much the film evolved from the original script, shaping the film during the editing process, and what sort of deleted scenes you can expect on the Blu-ray/DVD.  He also talked about working with Kevin Costner, who is a very accomplished director, versus working with Chris Evans, on his first feature as a director, called 1:30 Train, that the big-screen version of Spring Awakening is the next thing he’ll be focusing on, whether he’s really looking to make a feature film version of The Fall Guy, and what it means to him to have The CW series Supernatural, which he produces, picked up for its 10th season.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

First Trailer and Poster for 3 DAYS TO KILL Starring Kevin Costner, Amber Heard, and Hailee Steinfeld

by     Posted 218 days ago

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The first trailer and poster for McG‘s 3 Days to Kill, starring Kevin Costner, are now online.  Costner plays an international spy who’s trying to set aside his violent profession in order to reconnect with his estranged wife (Connie Nielsen) and daughter (Hailee Steinfeld), but his handler (Amber Heard) ropes him back into more work for the agency.  The “violent guy with special skills plus estranged daughter” plot will inevitably invite comparisons to Taken, but 3 Days to Kill looks like it has a much lighter tone and more absurd action (although it will be tough to top Taken 2‘s scene where grenades are used to calculate distance).

3 Days to Kill opens February 21, 2014.  Hit the jump to watch the trailer and check out the poster.

Dwayne Johnson is THE FALL GUY for Director McG

by     Posted 321 days ago

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The adaptation of 1980s TV series The Fall Guy has been in development for a while, but what better actor to land to give the project a shot in the arm than Dwayne Johnson (Fast & Furious 6).  Starring Lee MajorsThe Fall Guy centered on a stuntman who moonlighted as a bounty hunter when work was slow.  Just as Johnson is reported as being in negotiations to step into Majors’ shoes, McG (We Are Marshall) is also in talks to direct.  If deals were to close, casting would likely look to the roles of a sidekick cousin and a fetching female stunt actress, played by Douglas Barr and Heather Thomas in the original series, respectively.  That is, if the big-screen version were to follow in the footsteps of the ABC series; no plot details are available just yet.  Hit the jump for more, including a look at the show’s intro that features shots of 1980s Hollywood (and a vintage beauty in Thomas). 

McG’s THREE DAYS TO KILL Set for Release on February 14, 2014

by     Posted 1 year, 56 days ago

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Relativity Media announced today that director McG’s new action-thriller, tentatively titled Three Days to Kill, will hit theaters on February 14, 2014.  Written by Luc Besson and Adi Hasak, the film stars Kevin Costner as an elite government hit man who, after receiving news that he has a terminal disease, decides to give up his high stakes life to build a relationship with his estranged wife and daughter.  However, when his agency offers him an experimental, potentially life-saving drug in exchange for one last mission, Costner’s character finds himself juggling caring for his daughter while his wife is away and completing his mission at the same time, all the while experiencing hallucinatory side effects from the drug.

Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit) and Connie Nielsen (Boss) star as Costner’s daughter and wife, respectively, and Amber Heard (The Rum Diary) plays the mysterious woman who offers Costner the drug.  On the crowded 2014 Valentine’s Day weekend, Three Days to Kill will open opposite the romantic comedy remake About Last Night, the sci-fi thriller The Maze Runner, the fantasy YA adaptation Vampire Academy, and the romance remake Endless Love.

McG in Talks to Replace Antoine Fuqua on Action Thriller HUNTER KILLER

by     Posted 1 year, 64 days ago

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Relativity Media’s long-in-the-works action thriller Hunter Killer may soon have a new director.  Variety reports that McG has entered negotiations to take over the director’s chair on the project from Antoine Fuqua, who himself replaced Phillip Noyce on the film.  The pic is based on the novel Firing Point by Don Keith and George Wallace and “follows an untested submarine captain who must work with a Navy SEAL team to rescue Russia’s president, who’s taken prisoner during a military coup. The two sides team to stop a rogue Russian general from igniting World War III.”  Gerard Butler was initially slated to star, but he and Fuqua went and made Olympus Has Fallen instead so McG will be looking for a new lead.  The script was written by Jamie Moss, John Kolvenbach, and Arne Schmidt.

McG most recently helmed the thriller Three Days to Kill starring Kevin Costner, also for Relativity.  Clearly the studio is happy with the results and wants to continue its relationship with the Charlie’s Angels and Terminator Salvation director.

Christian Slater and Justin Long Join UNDISCOVERED GYRL Adaptation, Connie Nielsen Boards McG’s Latest and Ben Mendelsohn in Talks for MISSISSIPPI GRIND

by     Posted 1 year, 197 days ago

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Check out the latest casting news below:

  • Christian Slater (Broken Arrow) and Justin Long (Live Free or Die Hard) join the indie drama Undiscovered Gyrl, an adaptation of Allison Burnett’s novel which Burnett himself will direct.
  • Connie Nielsen (Gladiator) has joined the latest McG project, previously reported as Three Days to Kill.  The pic is a darkly comic action thriller that involves a Secret Service agent who comes out of retirement for one last mission in exchange for a drug that could save his life.
  • Ben Mendelsohn (Killing Them Softly) is in talks to join Mississippi Grind, a road trip pic of sorts with a plot focused on gambling addiction.  The indie also stars Jake Gyllenhaal who will produce.

Hit the jump for more on each picture.

Amber Heard to Star Opposite Kevin Costner in McG’s THREE DAYS TO KILL

by     Posted 1 year, 220 days ago

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Director McG has found his leading lady for the upcoming action thriller Three Days to KillVariety reports that Amber Heard (The Rum Diary) is set to star opposite Kevin Costner in the pic for Relativity Media.  The script was written by Luc Besson and Adi Hasak and centers on a dying Secret Service agent (Costner) who decides to retire in order to spend time with his estranged family.  Heard has been set in the lead female role of “a woman who offers him access to an experimental drug that could save his life in exchange for one last assignment, which Costner must complete while coping with the drug’s hallucinatory side effects.”  One imagines McG will try to bring the very visual premise to life with some innovative camera work, so here’s hoping for the best.

Heard most recently wrapped roles in Robert Rodriguez’s sequel Machete Kills and the corporate thriller Paranoia opposite Liam Hemsworth.

McG Developing SCHOOL OF FEAR as Possible Directing Vehicle

by     Posted 1 year, 245 days ago

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Director McG is currently looking for his follow-up to This Means War, and it looks like he’ll be going with Three Days to Kill, a thriller centering on a secret service agent played by Kevin Costner.  But the Terminator Salvation director is still lining up future projects.  He’s also on board to direct a feature based on the Magic Castle, a Hollywood nightclub for magicians and magic enthusiasts, and today Variety reports that his production company is developing an adaptation of the book School of Fear as a possible directing vehicle.  Based on the first novel in a trilogy, the series “follows four children, all suffering from phobias, who are sent to the exclusive yet secretive school where they conquer their fears and survive a perilous final test.”  Please, please, please let the headmaster of the school be played by Joe Rogan.

Hit the jump for a synopsis of the book.  McG is currently in pre-production on Three Days to Kill.

McG to Direct Magic Castle Picture

by     Posted 1 year, 256 days ago

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McG (Terminator Salvation) is reportedly attached to direct a feature based on Hollywood’s Magic Castle, a nightclub for magicians and magic enthusiasts.  Set up at 20th Century Fox, the Radar Pictures’ film is being scripted by Andrew Barrer (Haunt) and Gabe Ferrari (Sabrina the Teenage Witch).  No plot details are available as of yet, but the “most unusual private club in the world” is surely at the center of it all.  The “invite only” clubhouse also plays host to the Academy of Magical Arts, led by Neil Patrick Harris.  Heat Vision reports that McG will focus on the Magic Castle picture after wrapping on Three Days to Kill with Kevin Costner in February.  The Magic Castle is also exploring reality show and video game options with Radar.

Kevin Costner Confirmed to Star in Luc Besson-Produced Secret Service Thriller for Director McG

by     Posted 1 year, 293 days ago

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Back in August, we learned that McG and Kevin Costner were looking to possibly team up on an untitled action thriller (previously titled Three Days to Kill)produced by Luc Besson (The Fifth Element, Taken).  It appears that things have officially come together, as Variety reports that Costner has closed a deal to star in the film while McG is set to direct.  Besson co-wrote the film with Adi Hasak (From Paris with Love), which centers on a dying secret service agent who retires in order to reconnect with his family.  The Secret Service offers him the chance to use an experimental drug that could save his life in exchange for one last assignment, and Costner finds himself “trying to juggle his family, his mission, and the drug’s hallucinatory side-effects.”

It’s a twist on the familiar “one last job” premise, and while I think Costner’s a fine choice to lead the project, I’m less convinced of McG’s skills as a filmmaker.  The set-up provides for some exciting possibilities, so hopefully we’ll be pleasantly surprised.

THIS MEANS WAR Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 1 year, 333 days ago

What happens when two top-notch CIA operatives set their sights on the same woman? Nothing terribly unexpected, so it seems. This Means War, a playful rom-com by Director McG, takes on the task of trying to appease action and romance audiences, and fails to do strike a chord with either.  Hit the jump for our review of the Blu-ray.

Kevin Costner Eyes Kenneth Branagh’s Jack Ryan Film and Luc Besson’s Production, THREE DAYS TO KILL

by     Posted 1 year, 350 days ago

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Kevin Costner (Dances with Wolves) is being courted for substantial roles in a pair of upcoming films.  While Costner’s recent work was on the small screen in the History channel’s Hatfields & McCoys, he’ll next be seen on the big screen as Pa Kent in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel.  Now, reports have Costner being courted for Kenneth Branagh’s Jack Ryan film reboot which stars Chris Pine, as well as a Luc Besson production, Three Days to Kill.  Hopefully this is a kickstart to seeing more of Costner in features again.  More on both of these projects after the jump.

Wes Ball to Adapt His Post-Apocalyptic Animated Short RUIN for Live-Action Feature; Fox Sees Franchise Potential

by     Posted 2 years, 3 days ago

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Fox liked what they saw in Wes Ball’s animated short, Ruin—enough to pre-emptively buy the movie rights before Ball could meet with other studios.  According to Heat Vision, the studio even sees “franchise potential” with Ruin.  The plan is for Ball to direct a live-action adaptation based on a script he will co-write with T.S. Nowlin, working under the supervision of producers McG and Lucasfilm’s Steve Tzirlin.  This will be Ball’s feature directorial debut after a career in graphic work on Blu-ray and DVD featurettes, including Star Trek.

Ball and Nowlin have plenty of freedom to develop a story, since the short is dialogue-free and the plot revolves entirely  around a big chase scene.  Said chase scene is thrilling, and the design of the ruined world is inviting, so the short is worth a watch after the jump.

Jonathan Levine in Talks to Direct DEAD SPY RUNNING for McG

by     Posted 2 years, 132 days ago

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When we spoke with This Means War director/producer McG last month, he mentioned Dead Spy Running, a spy project he developed with Stephen Gaghan (Syriana).  McG hoped Gaghan could direct, but suggested there could be a scheduling issue.  If Gaghan can’t find the time, Twitch hears McG found a promising replacement in Jonathan Levine, now in negotiations to direct.  Levine’s resume—50/50, The Wackness, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane—does not necessarily prepare him for a spy thriller.  But Levine crafted one of the finest films of 2011 in 50/50, and his next project is the high-concept zombie genre piece Warm Bodies.  Now is a great time to get into business with an up-and-coming director who has demonstrated his competency with a variety of material.

McG described Dead Spy Running as a spy story for this generation, “the Social Network age.”  Hit the jump for his full pitch.

McG Talks THIS MEANS WAR, SPRING AWAKENING, TINK, TERMINATOR SALVATION Original Ending & Deleted Scenes, PUZZLE PALACE

by     Posted 2 years, 155 days ago

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Opening this weekend is the action-comedy This Means War. Directed by McG, Chris Pine and Tom Hardy portray the world’s deadliest CIA operatives who are also inseparable partners and best friends…until they fall for the same woman (Reese Witherspoon).  Rather than giving up and allowing one of the two to continue seeing Witherspoon, Hardy and Pine put their CIA gadgetry and know-how to work in order to derail each another’s relationship with the girl.  For more on the film, here’s six clips and Matt’s review.

During the recent Los Angeles press junket, I was able to land an exclusive video interview with McG.  We talked about making This Means War, the battle with the MPAA over rating and what they had to cut to get a PG-13, test screenings, deleted scenes, and what will be on the Blu-ray (it’ll have a Bond-style title sequence).  In addition, with McG attached to so many other projects, I got updates on his TV pilot Guilty (about a lawyer that’s been disbarred), Spring Awakening, Dead Spy Running (a spy movie that Stephen Gaghan is writing and possibly directing), Face It (a romantic comedy), Monster Squad (he’s not involved anymore), Medieval (the status is up in the air at Regency), Tink (will star Elizabeth Banks as Tinkerbell), I Am a Genius of Unspeakable Evil and I Want to Be Your Class President (they haven’t cracked the script yet), Puzzle Palace (a thriller like Die Hard about a boy who has to break in to 1 Police Plaza in New York), Ouija (he’s not involved anymore), The Girl Who Conned the Ivy League (will star Amanda Seyfried as a girl who steals someone’s identity to attend an Ivy League school), and we also talked about the 30 to 40 minutes of deleted scenes from Terminator Salvation and an alternate ending where Skynet wins.  Hit the jump to watch.

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