New INTO THE WOODS Images Reveal Anna Kendrick’s Cinderella, Chris Pine’s Prince Charming, and Johnny Depp’s Big Bad Wolf

by     Posted 1 hour ago

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A batch of new Into the Woods images from director Rob Marshall’s (Chicago) feature film adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim musical has landed online.  The Disney production stars James Corden (Begin Again) and Emily Blunt as a Baker and his wife who venture into the woods to confront the witch responsible for putting a curse on the childless couple.  Along the way, they run into a number of familiar fairy tale characters.  Today’s new images reveal quite a few of these, including Anna Kendrick as Cinderella, Johnny Depp as the Big Bad Wolf, and Chris Pine as Prince Charming.  It’s an absolutely stacked cast, and Marshall had everyone sing live on set, so it should be interesting to see the final result come together this Christmas.  With these images debuting today, I imagine a first trailer is right around the corner.

Hit the jump to check out the new Into the Woods images.  The film also stars Meryl Streep, Lucy Punch, Christine Baranski, Tracy Ullman, Lilla Crawford, Daniel Huttlestone, Tammy Blanchard, Billy Magnussen, Mackenzie MauzyInto the Woods opens in theaters on December 25th.

New THE GIVER Trailer: Meryl Streep Rules in Black and White

by     Posted 56 days ago

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The Weinstein Company has released a new The Giver trailer for director Philip Noyce’s (Salt) adaptation of the beloved Lois Lowry book.  The sci-fi thriller takes place in a utopian society where all memories of the past reside with a sage figure known as “The Giver”.  Jeff Bridges plays the titular character and Brenton Thwaites (Maleficent) plays a young boy who has been selected to be the new Giver.  This is the first trailer to actually make the film stand out from the similarly themed Hunger Games and Divergent franchises (which is ironic, since Lowry’s source material predates both), as it appears that Noyce is keeping the black and white aesthetic from the book—at least at the beginning of the film.  The clip also gets a boost from Clint Mansell’s Requiem for a Dream score, but overall I’m now a bit more interested in seeing what Noyce has put together.

Hit the jump to watch the new The Giver trailer.  The film also stars Meryl Streep, Alexander Skarsgard, Katie Holmes, Taylor Swift, Cameron Monaghan, and Odeya RushThe Giver opens in theaters on August 15th.

THE GIVER Character Posters and Images Featuring Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, and Taylor Swift

by     Posted 68 days ago

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The Weinstein Company has released a slew of The Giver posters and images from director Philip Noyce’s adaptation of the Lois Lowry novel.  The story takes place in a utopian society where all memories of the past reside with a sage figure known as “The Giver”.  Jeff Bridges plays the titular character and Brenton Thwaites (Maleficent) plays a young boy who has been selected to be the new Giver.  These character posters introduce the main cast, which also includes Meryl Streep, Alexander SkarsgardKatie Holmes, and a brunette Taylor Swift.  I still don’t have a solid hold on what Noyce’s take on the material entails, but I imagine the film will become more clear as we approach the release date.

Hit the jump to check out the The Giver posters and images.  The film also stars Cameron Monaghan and Odeya RushThe Giver opens in theaters on August 15th.

First Trailer and Images for Tommy Lee Jones’ THE HOMESMAN Starring Jones, Hilary Swank, Hailee Steinfeld, and Meryl Streep

by     Posted 107 days ago

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The first trailer and images have gone online for Tommy Lee Jones‘ western drama, The Homesman.  The story centers on a claim-jumping rascal (Jones) and a frontierswoman (Hilary Swank) as they escort three insane women from Nebraska to Iowa and battle the harsh elemental conditions of the prairie.  I loved Jones’ 2005 film The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, which played like a modern-day western.  The Homesman looks more like a straight entry into the genre, but also an interesting one.  There appears to be a tricky balance between Jones’ slightly off-kilter character and the serious dangers he and his traveling companions must face.  Nevertheless, it has an outstanding cast, and I assume we’ll be seeing it later this year since it will be released next month in France.  It’s also a safe assumption that it will make its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, so I’m eager to hear the buzz on the picture.

Hit the jump to check out The Homesman trailer and images.  The film also stars Hailee Steinfeld, Meryl Streep, Tim Blake Nelson, James Spader, William Fichtner, and Jesse PlemonsThe Homesman is currently awaiting U.S. distribution.

FANTASTIC MR. FOX Criterion Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 122 days ago

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Few filmmakers are better suited to the world of stop-motion animation than Wes Anderson.  The director has fine-tuned his visual aesthetic over the course of his career, bringing quick and stable camera movements, gorgeous set designs, and specific yet vibrant color palettes to the forefront of his signature style.  After a swell run films that made him one of the most exciting directors in the business, Anderson expanded his scope to the sea (Life Aquatic) and international locales (Darjeeling Limited) before diving into the world of stop-motion animation for his 2009 film Fantastic Mr. Fox.

The result is a highlight of an already impressive career, and the impeccable Roald Dahl adaptation is finally a part of the Criterion Collection.  Hit the jump for my Fantastic Mr. Fox Blu-ray review.

Kevin Spacey to Play Winston Churchill, Meryl Streep Set for Jonathan Demme/Diablo Cody Project, and Amy Ryan Joins MONSTER TRUCKS

by     Posted 127 days ago

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We have a few interesting casting stories to attend to this afternoon.  Briefly:

  • Kevin Spacey is adding another politician to his roster, as he is set to take on the role of Winston Churchill in the drama Captain of the Gate.
  • Meryl Streep is attached to star in a new project with Jonathan Demme onboard to direct from a script by Diablo Cody.
  • Amy Ryan has been added to the live-action/CG hybrid film Monster Trucks.

Hit the jump for more details on the aforementioned casting.

First Trailer for THE GIVER Starring Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, and Brenton Thwaites

by     Posted 133 days ago

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The Weinstein Company has released the first trailer for director Phillip Noyce’s (Salt) adaptation of the Lois Lowry novel The Giver.  The story takes place in a utopian society where all memories of the past reside with a sage figure known as “The Giver”.  Jeff Bridges plays the titular character and Brenton Thwaites (Maleficent) plays a young boy who has been selected to be the new Giver.  This trailer really wants the movie to look more like The Hunger Games and Divergent even though Lowry’s novel 21-year-old book won the Newbery Medal.  It makes sense that they’re trying to sell the dystopian angle even though I’d like to see more of Bridges.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The film also stars Meryl Streep, Alexander Skarsgard, Katie Holmes, Cameron Monaghan, and Taylor SwiftThe Giver opens August 15th.

Meryl Streep Joins SUFFRAGETTE, Ben Kingsley Added to James Dean Biopic LIFE, and MONSTER TRUCKS Eyes Jane Levy and Lucas Till

by     Posted 161 days ago

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We’ve got a few casting stories to attend to this afternoon.  Briefly:

  • Meryl Streep has signed on to a small but pivotal role as a historical figure in the feminist movement drama Suffragette starring Carey Mulligan.
  • Sir Ben Kingsley has joined the cast of director Anton Corbjn’s drama Life, starring Dane DeHaan as James Dean.
  • Paramount has set its sights on its two leads for the big-budget Monster Trucks movie in Jane Levy (Suburgatory) and Lucas Till (X-Men: First Class).

Hit the jump for more on the aforementioned casting.

Excellent Criterion Collection Trailer for Wes Anderson’s FANTASTIC MR. FOX

by     Posted 170 days ago

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Wes Anderson has made many good films over the course of his career, but Fantastic Mr. Fox is among his best.  The 2009 stop-motion animated adaptation of Roald Dahl’s childrens book is an absolute delight from start to finish, and it’s finally getting a proper Criterion Collection release next week.  In anticipation of the Blu-ray/DVD dual format release, Criterion has put together a swell new trailer that offers a peek at some of the behind-the-scenes material that will be included on the Criterion disc.  The director-approved release includes the film’s digital master as well as a host of extras, including audio commentary, footage of the actors voicing the characters, an hour-long documentary about Dahl, and much more.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer and to see the full list of extras included on the Blu-ray, and click here to pre-order the disc.  Fantastic Mr. Fox Criterion Collection Blu-ray/DVD will be available starting February 18th.

Harvey Weinstein Says He and Meryl Streep Are Going to Make a Movie “That Will Make the NRA Wish They Weren’t Alive”

by     Posted 195 days ago

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Producer Harvey Weinstein is not afraid to speak his mind.  He did just that on a recent appearance on The Howard Stern Show, (via Washington Times), where he revealed that he and Meryl Streep are working on a project that will take on the National Rifle Association.  After making some strong statements against the NRA, Weinstein said, “I’m going to make a movie with Meryl Streep, and we’re going to take [gun rights] head-on. And [the NRA is] going to wish they weren’t alive after I’m done with them.”  Weinstein revealed that the project won’t be a documentary, but will instead be a big movie in the vein of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.  His vision for the project is for people to leave the theater thinking, “Gun stocks – I don’t want to be involved in that stuff.”

No further details on the project are given, and a timetable is unknown at this point.  Streep recently wrapped the big Disney musical Into the Woods and is currently filming the long-awaited childrens book adaptation The Giver.

2014 Oscar Nominations Announced; AMERICAN HUSTLE and GRAVITY Lead with 10 Nominations Each [Updated with Commentary]

by     Posted 195 days ago

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The nominations for the 86th Academy Awards have been announced. American Hustle and Gravity lead with 10 nominations each, while 12 Years a Slave isn’t too far behind with 9 nominations.  Looking over my predictions, there weren’t actually too many surprises this morning–at least no genuine “snubs” on the scale of Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow last year.  Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale made the Best Actor cut over Robert Redford and Tom HanksHer, Dallas Buyers Club, and Philomena all got Best Picture nominations over Saving Mr. Banks, and Sally Hawkins landed a Best Supporting Actress nomination for her work in Blue Jasmine, seemingly taking Oprah Winfrey‘s spot from Lee Daniels’ The Butler.  Also, the Academy apparently did not take a liking to Saving Mr. Banks, as the film missed out on a Best Picture nomination and a Best Actress nomination for Emma Thompson.

Hit the jump to take a look at the full nominations list.  The 86th Oscars will be broadcast March 2nd on ABC. [Update: I've added my commentary on some of the categories after the jump.]

12 YEARS A SLAVE and AMERICAN HUSTLE Lead Critics Choice Award Nominations

by     Posted 226 days ago

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The Broadcast Film Critics Association has unveiled its list of nominees for the upcoming Critics’ Choice Movie Awards, and 12 Years a Slave and American Hustle lead the pack with 13 nominations each—though three of Hustle’s nominations come from “Comedy” categories.  The BFCA added some genre categories last year for Action, Sci-Fi/Horror, and Comedy, so the list of nominations is a bit more diverse than those we’ve seen previously.  That being said, Brie Larson made the overall Best Actress cut for her excellent turn in Short Term 12, and it’s nice to finally see The World’s End and star Simon Pegg getting some attention (nicer still that BFCA recognizes actual comedies in the Best Comedy category, unlike the Golden Globes).  Other notable additions include Scarlett Johansson nabbing a Best Supporting Actress nod for her voice-only role in Her and Christian Bale landing a Best Actor nomination for the aforementioned American Hustle.

Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominations and to find out how closely the Critics’ Choice Awards correlate with Oscar.  The 19th annual Critics’ Choice Movie Awards will be held on January 16, 2014.

F-Bombs Fly in New Red-Band Clip from AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY Featuring Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep

by     Posted 236 days ago

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A new red-band clip from director John Wells’ adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Tracy Letts play August: Osage County has been released online, and it is very NSFW.  The story follows the women of a family whose lives have splintered in many directions until a crisis bring them back to their childhood home and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them.  This new clip is a nice showcase of the complicated and tense relationship between Meryl Streep’s pill-popping matriarch and Julia Roberts’ oldest daughter.  As you can see, there’s not exactly a language filter in this family, and Roberts more than holds her own opposite Streep for the film’s runtime, turning in her best performance in years.

Hit the jump to watch the new red-band clip, and click here to read Matt’s review from the Toronto International Film Festival.  The film also stars Julianne Nicholson, Ewan McGregor, Benedict Cumberbatch, Margo Martindale, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Juliette Lewis, Dermot Mulroney, and Sam ShepardAugust: Osage County opens in limited release on December 25th and expands nationwide on January 10th.

Oscar Beat: The Best Actress Race – Can Anyone Beat Blanchett?

by     Posted 249 days ago

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In Collider’s ongoing awards feature Oscar Beat, we recently took a look at the state of the Best Actor Oscar race, which is looking to be one of the most competitive in recent memory.  Likewise, this year’s Best Actress race is chock-full of fantastic performances and serious contenders, but we’ve had a frontrunner for the category since July and Cate Blanchett’s name remains atop the pile as we head into the thick of the race.  Will Blanchett remain the favorite over the next three months or is there another contender more worthy of the trophy?  Can any of the brilliant performances from this year’s smaller indies crack the top five?  Read on after the jump as we examine the current state of the Best Actress category.

Meryl Streep Grills Dermot Mulroney in New Clip from AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY

by     Posted 250 days ago

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A new clip from director John Wells’ adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Tracy Letts play August: Osage County has been released online.  The story follows the women of a family whose lives have splintered in many directions until a crisis bring them back to their childhood home and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them.  That pill-popping matriarch is played by Meryl Streep, and this new clip is from focuses on Streep’s character grilling one of her daughters’ (Juliette Lewis) new beau (Dermot Mulroney).  It’s a nice tease of what to expect from Streep’s dark portrayal, and it comes in the middle of an extended dinner sequence that acts as the fantastic dramatic centerpiece of the film.

Hit the jump to watch the clip and click here to read Matt’s review from TIFF.  The film also stars Julia RobertsEwan McGregorBenedict CumberbatchMargot MartindaleChris Cooper, Julianne Nicholson, Abigail Breslin, and Sam Shepard.  August: Osage County opens on December 25th.

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