Director Paul W.S. Anderson Talks POMPEII, the Visual Effects, Deleted Scenes, RESIDENT EVIL 6, and More

by     Posted 49 days ago

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Now playing in theaters is director Paul W.S. Anderson’s disaster epic Pompeii.  The film stars Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) as an enslaved Celtic gladiator named Milo who falls in love with a noblewoman (Emily Browning) on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man (Kiefer Sutherland) who slaughtered his family years earlier.  The film also stars Jared HarrisAdewale Akinnuoye-AgbajeCarrie-Anne MossSasha RoizJessica Lucas, and Paz Vega.

At the Los Angeles press day, I landed an exclusive video interview with Anderson.  He talked about the challenge of bringing Pompeii to life, the visual effects, deleted scenes, whether the script changed during the development process, the status of Resident Evil 6, and a lot more.  Hit the jump for what he had to say.

TOP 5: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST Set Visit, POMPEII Interviews, FANTASTIC FOUR Casting, Toy Fair 2014

by     Posted 53 days ago

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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.

POMPEII Review

by     Posted 55 days ago

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Until Titanic was released to record-breaking box office and a slew of awards, director James Cameron was known for straight-up action movies.  Titanic is still an action movie; it just happens to have a cheesy love story in the middle, and its epic sweep and central tragedy connected with audiences.  Two lesser directors attempted to repeat this formula, but with far less success.  Michael Bay attempted it in 2001 with Pearl Harbor and now Paul W.S. Anderson, the director behind Mortal Kombat, Alien vs. Predator, and multiple Resident Evil movies, has tried with Pompeii, a movie that not only apes Titanic, but also Gladiator.  Anderson may recognize the formula and have more weapons of destruction at his disposal, but he neither has the skill or the originality to move Pompeii out of the shadow of giants.

Watch 4 Clips from Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII Starring Kit Harington, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Emily Browning, and Kiefer Sutherland

by     Posted 68 days ago

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TriStar Pictures has released four clips from director Paul W.S. Anderson’s upcoming disaster epic Pompeii.  The film stars Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) as an enslaved Celtic gladiator named Milo who falls in love with a noblewoman (Emily Browning) on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man (Kiefer Sutherland) who slaughtered his family years earlier.  If you missed any of Steve’s set visit coverage for the film, be sure to check out his full set visit report and interviews with Anderson, Harington, Sutherland, and producer Jeremy Bolt.

Hit the jump to watch the clips.  The film also stars Jared Harris, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Carrie-Anne Moss, Sasha Roiz, Jessica Lucas, and Paz VegaPompeii opens in 3D on February 21st.

RESIDENT EVIL 6 Update: No Release Date. No Script. But Director Paul W.S. Anderson and Screen Gems Want to Make it

by     Posted 74 days ago

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About a year ago, a rumor hit that Resident Evil 6 would be released on September 12, 2014.  However, with it now being February, and no information on filming, casting, or anything Resident Evil 6-related since that release date story, I figured the project was either filming under the greatest veil of secrecy ever or the release date was incorrect.  As you can probably guess, it’s the latter.

Just a few hours ago, I sat down with writer-director Paul W.S. Anderson for his disaster epic, Pompeii, and I asked him the status of the next Resident Evil.  According to Anderson, he only finished Pompeii a few days ago and hasn’t begun to think about anything but a vacation.  However, he did say, “we’d like to do another Resident Evil movie. Definitely.  But the wheels aren’t quite in motion yet.”  Hit the jump for more.

TOP 5: THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG, First Trailer for GODZILLA, POMPEII Set Visit, TERMINATOR Reboot News, JUPITER ASCENDING Trailer

by     Posted 123 days ago

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What began as a way to keep my mind off of my upcoming fantasy football playoff matchup has blossomed into a full-on love affair. Over the past week I’ve watched a considerable amount of Parks and Recreation via Netflix and I couldn’t be happier with my time killer of choice. I’ve made it through the first three seasons, all of which have delivered consistent laughs and excellent character moments (Ron’s inability to resist his ex-wife and Leslie’s attempt to stay awake during Pawnee Cares’ diabetes telethon come to mind). I’ll admit that my television viewing is often marred by my own skepticism. When Parks debuted, I watched the first few episodes and wrote it off as cutting and pasting The Office‘s format into a small town, local government setting. These last few days I’ve realized that’s almost exactly what Parks is and yet I couldn’t care less because it’s smart, funny, and endearing at nearly every turn.

My new found love of Parks and Recreation now officially on the record, this week’s Top 5 includes The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug interviews and review, the first trailer for director Gareth EdwardsGodzilla, a recap of Steve’s visit to the set of Paul W.S. Anderson‘s Pompeii, several bits of news out of the Terminator reboot camp, and the first trailer for The Wachowski Siblings‘ latest Jupiter Ascending. What comes next is a brief recap and link to each of the above.

Director Paul W.S. Anderson Talks Building Practical Sets, Expanding into Love Story Territory, and More on the Set of POMPEII

by     Posted 128 days ago

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Since director Paul W.S. Anderson was a child, he’s been obsessed with Romans.  As he explained during a group interview on the Toronto set of Pompeii:

“I grew up in the north of England, in New Castle, which is where Hadrian’s Wall starts on the east coast of England and then goes across to the west.  When I was a kid, every field trip was to some Roman fort because it was cheap and free.  Romans were a big part of my life when I was a kid.  And Pompeii also is taught in school and it’s just a fascinating subject.  You know, the idea of this city that’s really been preserved in time.  It’s really one of the most unique archeological sites in the world.  These people were flash fried at the point of death.  So you see the kind of lovers who were embraced, you see the person carrying, you see the dog.”

He went on to tell us that he’s been trying to make a movie about Pompeii since 2008 and it’s been a “labor of love.”  During the rest of the interview, Anderson talked about the importance of practical sets, stepping outside his normal wheelhouse by telling a love story, why he wanted to cast Kit Harrington and Emily Browning, being nervous about the kissing scenes, and a lot more.  Hit the jump for what he had to say.

New Trailer for POMPEII Starring Kit Harington and Emily Browning

by     Posted 133 days ago

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TriStar Pictures has released a new trailer for director Paul W.S. Anderson’s disaster epic Pompeii.  The film stars Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) as an enslaved Celtic gladiator named Milo who falls in love with a noblewoman (Emily Browning) on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man (Kiefer Sutherland) who slaughtered his family years earlier.  While this trailer teases a bit of the character interplay between Harington and Browning, the main focus is on the massive amount of destruction that Anderson unleashes in the film—which is to be expected when your movie is titled Pompeii.

Hit the jump to watch the new trailer, and click here to check out a trio of new images.  The pic also stars Carrie-Anne Moss, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Jessica Lucas, and Jared HarrisPompeii opens in 3D on February 21, 2014.

Teaser Trailer for Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII Starring Kit Harington, Emily Browning, and Kiefer Sutherland

by     Posted 238 days ago

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FilmDistrict has released the first teaser trailer for Resident Evil and The Three Musketeers director Paul W.S. Anderson’s upcoming Mount Vesuvius actioner Pompeii.  The film stars Kit Harington as an enslaved Celtic gladiator named Milo who falls in love with a noblewoman (Emily Browning) on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man who slaughtered his family years earlier.  This teaser opens up by quietly playing on the familiar imagery of the Pompeii citizens fossilized in ash, followed by a brief glimpse of footage.  While it’s tough to suss out the character interplay from this teaser, it’s clear that Anderson is not holding back when it comes to volcano carnage (as if you thought he would).  We’ve come a long way since Dante’s Peak and Volcano, folks.

Hit the jump to watch the trailer.  The film also stars Kiefer Sutherland, Jared Harris, Carrie-Anne Moss, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Jessica Lucas, and Paz VegaPompeii opens in 3D on February 21, 2014.

First Image of Kit Harington in Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII

by     Posted 239 days ago

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For those annoyed by all the layers Kit Harington’s Jon Snow sports in HBO’s Game of Thrones, the actor has taken a rather bare approach to his wardrobe in the upcoming Mount Vesuvius actioner Pompeii.  The first image from director Paul W.S. Anderson’s (Resident Evil, The Three Musketeers) disaster film shows off Harington’s incredibly toned lead character, Milo, who is an enslaved Celtic gladiator.  The story follows Milo as he falls in love with a noblewoman (Emily Browning) on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man who slaughtered his family years earlier.  Harington bulked up for the role in order to convincingly play a gladiator, and his training definitely appears to have paid off.

Hit the jump to take a look at the image.  The film also stars Kiefer Sutherland, Jared Harris, Carrie-Anne Moss, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Jessica Lucas, and Paz VegaPompeii opens in 3D on February 21, 2014.

FilmDistrict Acquires U.S. Rights for Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII; Film Set for February 28, 2014 Release

by     Posted 1 year, 7 days ago

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FilmDistrict has acquired U.S. distribution rights for director Paul W.S. Anderson’s (Resident Evil, The Three Musketeers) upcoming disaster film Pompeii.  The story “follows an enslaved Celtic gladiator who falls in love with a noblewoman on the eve of a massive volcanic eruption that destroys Pompeii, an event that also brings him face-to-face with the man who slaughtered his family years earlier.”  Kit Harington stars as the gladiator, while the rest of the cast is filled out by Emily Browning (Sucker Punch), Jared Harris, Kiefer Sutherland, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Lost), Jessica Lucas (Evil Dead), and recent addition Carrie-Anne Moss.

The script was written by Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, and production is currently underway in Toronto.  FilmDistrict has set Pompeii for release on February 28, 2014.  Hit the jump to read the full press release.

GODZILLA Cast Adds Sally Hawkins; Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje Joins Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII Starring Kit Harington

by     Posted 1 year, 11 days ago

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Check out the latest casting news below:

  • Sally Hawkins (Submarine) has joined the cast of Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla reboot, featuring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Bryan Cranston and Elizabeth Olsen.
  • Adewale Akkinuoye-Agbaje (The Bourne Identity) has boarded Paul W.S. Anderson’s Pompeii, starring Kit Harington, Emily Browning and Kiefer Sutherland.

Hit the jump for more on each casting announcement.

RESIDENT EVIL 6 Set for Release on September 12, 2014

by     Posted 1 year, 43 days ago

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Fans of the Resident Evil film franchise can now rest easy knowing that the story will continue in at least one more feature.  The folks over at STYD have learned that Resident Evil 6 has been given a September 12, 2014 release date, confirming that the sequel will indeed be moving forward.  This is a bit of a curious development, as last we heard, director Paul W.S. Anderson was gearing up to film the epic Pompeii this year with Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) set as the lead.  If the 2014 date for Resident Evil is indeed true, there’s no possible way that Anderson is filming both movies this year; either the production start-date for Pompeii has been pushed or someone else is directing Resident Evil 6 or Pompeii.

Though last year’s Resident Evil: Retribution broke the series’ impressive streak of each film grossing more than its predecessor, its final total of $221 million worldwide is nonetheless striking.  I’ve only ever seen the first Resident Evil so I have no idea where the series is at plot-wise, but Anderson told us last September that he had a story in mind for RE6 that involved a lot of death and would possibly bring the franchise to a close.  What about you, Resident Evil fans?  What do you hope to see in the next sequel?

Kit Harington in Talks to Lead Paul W.S. Anderson’s POMPEII

by     Posted 1 year, 153 days ago

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As he wraps up filming the third season of HBO’s wildly popular fantasy series Game of Thrones, Jon Snow himself Kit Harington is lining up a high profile feature film to shoot during his upcoming hiatus.  Variety reports that Harington is in talks to star in director Paul W.S. Anderson’s period pic Pompeii.  For those unfamiliar, the city of Pompeii was destroyed and buried during a catastrophic eruption of the volcano Mount Vesuvius in the year AD 70.  Anderson’s film uses this disaster as the backdrop for the story of a shipping tycoon’s slave named Milo.  Hit the jump for more details.

Weekend Box Office – RESIDENT EVIL: RETRIBUTION Tops FINDING NEMO 3D with $21.1 Million

by     Posted 1 year, 211 days ago

There were no blockbusters on this September frame but, after last weekend’s dismal returns, it’s hard to feel disappointed. Aided by 3D technology, Resident Evil: Retribution reigned with $21.1 million – more than twice what The Possession earned in first place last weekend. Finding Nemo 3D also had a ticket-price advantage although, in this case, the 2003 Pixar classic could not match the gross of last year’s 3D The Lion King re-release.

Title Weekend Total
1. Resident Evil: Retribution $21,100,000 $21.1
2. Finding Nemo 3D $17,504,000 $17.5
3. The Possession $5,800,000 $41.1
4. Lawless $4,219,000 $30.1
5. ParaNorman $3,039,000 $49.3
6. The Expendables 2 $3,030,000 $80.2
7. The Words $2,880,000 $9.15
8. The Bourne Legacy $2,875,000 $107.8
9. Odd Life of Timothy Green $2,511,000 $46.2
10. The Campaign $2,405,000 $82.8

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