We’ve got a few casting stories to attend to this evening. Briefly:
- Chris Pine is in talks to lead Disney’s coast guard drama The Finest Hours, which now has a new director in Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl).
- Michael B. Jordan is attached to lead the action thriller Men Who Kill, which is being developed as a star vehicle for the actor at 20th Century Fox.
- X-Men: First Class actor Caleb Landry Jones is in talks to join director Roland Emmerich’s gay rights drama Stonewall.
Hit the jump for much more on the aforementioned casting.
After a slow roll-out of announcements that began a few weeks ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has unveiled the full list of presenters for the upcoming 86th Academy Awards ceremony. As expected, there are plenty of previous winners poised to make appearances, including all four of last year’s acting winners (Daniel Day-Lewis, Jennifer Lawrence, Christoph Waltz, and Anne Hathaway), as well as some members of “young Hollywood” to appeal to the younger viewers (Anna Kendrick, Michael B. Jordan, Emma Watson, Zac Efron, Channing Tatum). On the “legends” side of things, we can also look forward to seeing presentations from Sidney Poitier and Bill Murray.
Hit the jump to take a look at the full list of presenters, and if you missed our latest Oscar-themed episode of our podcast The Collision, click here. The Oscars will air on ABC this Sunday, March 2nd.
Landing just outside of this week’s Top 5 and earning an opening paragraph mention as a result is the first trailer and poster for writer/editor/director Ti West‘s The Sacrament. Obviously inspired by 1978′s Jonestown Massacre, the film features a team of journalists who attempt to document the story of a seemingly peaceful religious commune only to have the proverbial shit hit the fan in the process. I think West is among the best working directors in terms of creating and maintaining terror as evidenced by both 2009′s The House of the Devil and 2011′s The Innkeepers. Each of those films expertly sustain a sense of dread throughout and if Gene Jones hauntingly daring the visiting journalists to “Take it…” in this first trailer is any indication, The Sacrament looks to be cut from the same stellar mold. While it will be tough to match the psychological horror dealt out by 2011′s cult-centric drama Martha Marcy May Marlene, I’ll be anxiously anticipating West’s latest up until the time it hits VOD on May 1st.
Transitioning to the list section of the feature, this week’s installment highlights the first trailer for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Steve’s set visit coverage for X-Men: Days of Future Past, interviews for and Matt’s review of Paul W.S. Anderson‘s Pompeii, casting news for Fox’s Fantastic Four reboot, and coverage from the floor of Toy Fair 2014 at the Javits Center in NYC. Keep reading for a quick recap and link to each of the above.
We have passed along Fantastic Four casting rumors for nearly a year now. It seems Fox is very close to finalizing the cast. THR reports the studio is in the final stages of negotiation with Miles Teller for Mr. Fantastic, Kate Mara for Invisible Girl, Michael B. Jordan for the Human Torch, and Jamie Bell for The Thing. Bell is the only name we have yet to hear attached to the project, but he’s a great addition to a promising young cast. Mara, nearly 31, is the oldest of the group. Heck, she’s older than director Josh Trank (Chronicle), who just turned 30. The age range may not match the public conception of the Marvel superhero group, but such a group of fresh voices reassures the reboot will look nothing like Fox’s other Fantastic Four attempts.
Fantastic Four is scheduled for release on June 19, 2015. Hit the jump for background from the comics.
Here’s today’s latest casting news:
- Miles Teller and Michael B. Jordan will reunite with That Awkward Moment director Tom Gormican for his untitled heist movie set up at Warner Bros.
- Elodie Yung is the latest addition to Alex Proyas’ Gods of Egypt, starring Gerard Butler, Geoffrey Rush, Brenton Thwaites and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau.
- James Badge Dale is reported as being in negotiations for Legendary’s supernatural thriller, Spectral, directed by Nic Mathieu.
Hit the jump for more on both pictures.
One of the most truly stand-out performances of 2013 was the one Michael B. Jordan gave in Fruitvale Station, as Oscar Grant, a young man who was killed by a BART police officer at the Fruitvale BART Station in Oakland, California. With an Independent Spirit Award nomination and the National Board of Review Award, it’s no surprised that he was honored for his performance with a Virtuosos Award at SBIFF. Collider was there to cover and attend the event, and we’ve compiled the highlights of what he had to say, both on the press line and during the Q&A.
While there, Michael B. Jordan talked about how incredible the last year was for him, the pressure of bringing this real-life story to life, his personal reaction to the tragedy, the use of the real cell phone footage in the film, the most difficult scenes to shoot, what it was like to shoot where the real Oscar Grant was shot, and how the character has stayed with him. He also talked about how amazing it is to be able to reunited with Fruitvale Station director Ryan Coogler to make Creed, the proposed spin-off of the Rocky franchise centered on Apollo Creed’s grandson. Check out what he had to say after the jump.
With its March start date fast approaching, screen testing is underway for Josh Trank‘s upcoming reboot, The Fantastic Four. The only actor currently confirmed for the movie is Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm/The Human Torch after Fox exercised the option it had on the actor following Chronicle, which was also directed by Trank. Today, we’ve learned about some of the actors testing for the other three members of the superhero team. Once again, Miles Teller‘s name is in the mix as he’s screen testing for the role of the elastic Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic. Although Kit Harington was also mentioned as a possibility for the role, the actor won’t test for the role, and will instead star in Testament to Youth.
Hit the jump for more including a surprising twist to Dr. Doom playing the villain. The Fantastic Four opens June 19, 2015.
It isn’t enough to just make a movie that dissects romance from the guy’s perspective. When you make a relationship movie, moviegoers are going to want your real life advice, too. Zac Efron, Michael B. Jordan and Miles Teller star in That Awkward Moment as Jason, Mikey and Daniel. When Mikey gets hit with a divorce, Jason and Daniel decide to lift his spirits by professing their dedication to the single life. They make a pact to stay unattached and head out ready to indulge in quick flings together. However, that turns out to be easier said than done because Mikey’s still hung up on his ex, Daniel starts to fall for his wing woman, Chelsea (Mackenzie Davis), and Jason meets Ellie (Imogen Poots), someone who actually makes him want more out of relationship for the first time in his life. Hit the jump for more.
With That Awkward Moment nearing its January 31st wide release, Efron, Jordan, Teller, Poots and writer-director Tom Gormican sat down for a press conference in New York City where there were questions about inspiration, casting and filming techniques, but loads more digging for information about what the group values in their real life relationships.
112 days ago, we reported that Simon Kinberg would be rewriting the Fantastic Four reboot. As of today, that rewrite has been turned in, which means 20th Century Fox is expected to start testing leads later this month. Names circling the lead roles include Miles Teller, Kit Harington and Richard Madden for Reed Richards, with Kate Mara and Saoirse Ronan for Sue Storm. Michael B. Jordan is reportedly attached to star as Johnny Storm, and will test with each group to determine who has the best chemistry. Director Josh Trank’s The Fantastic Four is due in theaters June 19, 2015. Hit the jump for more.
Last year, we reported that director Lee Daniels was planning to follow up The Butler with a Janis Joplin biopic starring Amy Adams. However, it now looks like he’s moving towards another biopic, this one around legendary comedian Richard Pryor. A Pryor biopic has been in the works for years, and last year we reported that Forest Whitaker was set to co-produce an untitled picture based on the stand-up comic’s life with the possibility of re-teaming with his Fruitvale Station star, Michael B. Jordan, to play the lead role. Today’s news regarding Daniels’ Pryor biopic makes no mention of Whitaker (a bit odd since he starred in The Butler), but still mentions Pryor’s widow, Jennifer Pryor, as a producer the project. However, Michael B. Jordan is still in the mix as are Marlon Wayans and Eddie Murphy. Hit the jump for more.
FilmDistrict has released four character videos for That Awkward Moment. The movie stars Zac Efron, Michael B. Jordan, and Miles Teller as three best friends who vow to maintain their single status for as long as possible when one of them is devastated by a recent breakup. The plan gets derailed when they each fall in love and have to secretly work around their pledge to bachelorhood. The videos feature Efron, Jordan, Teller, and Imogen Poots (who plays the girlfriend of Efron’s character) talking about their respective characters along with some footage of featuring that character. Like the trailers, this looks fairly charming and it could make for a nice rom-com.
Hit the jump to check out the videos. The film also stars Mackenzie Davis and Jessica Lucas. That Awkward Moment opens January 31st.
Over the past week, we’ve been looking back on 2013 and trying to whittle down what we thought were the “best” of the year. Obviously, this is all subjective. There is no mathematical formula at work. I feel I shouldn’t have to state this, but there are people in the comments section who feel that everything should be appraised “objectively”, which in this case would simply be “These are five actors who starred in movies” or “These are five people who directed movies”. The debate comes over who can be considered the best in their respective fields. Who gave a performance that we still can’t shake? Who put together a powerhouse of a picture? Who created the score we’re still humming? Who was the bane of our protagonists? Who’s on the cusp of the A-list? These are fun questions to ask, and hopefully they’ll stir up some fun (and respectful) debate.
Hit the jump for my miscellaneous “Best of 2013″ picks. Check back from December 28 – 30th for the Top 10 Films of 2013 lists from me, Adam, and Dave.
Focus Features has released a new collection of images from director Tom Gormican’s upcoming R-rated comedy That Awkward Moment. The film stars Zac Efron, Michael B. Jordan, and Miles Teller as three best friends who vow to maintain their single status for as long as possible when one of them is devastated by a recent breakup. The plan gets derailed when they each fall in love and have to secretly work around their pledge to bachelorhood. The film’s red-band trailer promises a pretty funny take on the “break-up movie” from a male point-of-view, and the pic’s charming lead cast certainly bodes well.
Hit the jump to check out the images. The film also stars Imogen Poots, Mackenzie Davis, and Jessica Lucas. That Awkward Moment opens January 31st.
Director John Hillcoat (The Road) is assembling one hell of a cast for his upcoming crime thriller Triple Nine. The Wrap reports that current awards contenders Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) and Michael B. Jordan (Fruitvale Station) as well as the incredibly talented Casey Affleck are all in talks to star alongside Oscar winners Christoph Waltz and Cate Blanchett in the film. Talk about a killer lineup. Scripted by Matt Cook, the story centers on a group of thieves who plan to murder a cop in order to draw attention away from the heist they’ll be pulling on the other side of town. The film has been in development for some time with Charlie Hunnam previously attached to play the targeted cop, but Affleck is now in talks to take on that role.
Ejiofor is mulling over an offer to play the mastermind behind the heist, while Jordan is in talks to play a young cop working with the thieves who partners up with Affleck’s character with the intention of setting him up. Production will begin next year on what is shaping up to be an incredibly promising project.
The critics awards are off and running after the New York Film Critics Circle announced its picks for the best of the year yesterday, and today the National Board of Review has named Her the best picture of 2013. Spike Jonze was also named Best Director for the film, while the acting honors went to Bruce Dern (Nebraska), Emma Thompson (Saving Mr. Banks), Will Forte (Nebraska), and Octavia Spencer (Fruitvale Station). Always an eclectic list, the NBR’s Top 10 includes The Wolf of Wall Street, Gravity, Lone Survivor, and Prisoners. Wholly absent from the Top 10 is the NYFCC’s pick for Best Film, American Hustle.
The NBR winner for Best Picture has failed to match up with Oscar since 2008’s Slumdog Millionaire, as last year’s award went to Zero Dark Thirty, but for the past 13 years every NBR winner has landed a Best Picture nomination, so this bodes well for Her‘s Oscar prospects. Read the full list of NBR winners after the jump.