DreamWorks Animation’s CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS & THE CROODS 2 Open in 2017, MADAGASCAR 4 and PUSS IN BOOTS 2 in 2018; HITMAN Sequel in 2015

by     Posted 70 days ago

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Here’s a look at the latest new release dates:

  • Hitman: Agent 47Aleksander Bach’s Hitman sequel starring Rupert Friend and Zachary Quinto is set to open February 27, 2015.
  • Captain UnderpantsRob Letterman’s adaptation featuring the voices of Ed HelmsKevin HartNick KrollJordan Peele, and Thomas Middleditch will open January 13, 2017.
  • The Croods 2 – The first film featured the voices of Emma StoneNicolas Cage, Ryan ReynoldsCatherine KeenerCloris Leachman, and Clark Duke, who might all return for the sequel opening November 3, 2017.
  • Madagascar 4 - The fourth installment in the animated animal sequel featuring the voices of Chris RockBen StillerJada Pinkett SmithDavid SchwimmerSacha Baron Cohen, and Cedric the Entertainer opens May 18, 2018.
  • Puss in Boots 2: Nine Lives & 40 Thieves - The sequel to Chris Miller’s animated adventure comedy that featured the voices of Antonio BanderasSalma Hayek, and Zach Galifianakis opens November 2, 2018.

Hit the jump for more on each film.

Antonio Banderas Says He Just Started Work on PUSS IN BOOTS 2

by     Posted 127 days ago

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While some animation studios take a very calculated, conservative approach to its films, DreamWorks Animation is known for churning out as many as three feature films in the span of a year; the studio has become a well-oiled animation machine.  Though the Shrek franchise came to a close (maybe) with 2010’s Shrek Forever After, DreamWorks Animation kept the spirit of the series alive with the 2011 spinoff feature Puss in Boots.  The pic focused on the adorably feisty titular kitty, voiced by Antonio Banderas, and grossed $554.9 million worldwide.  We’ve known that the studio was developing a sequel to the fairy tale film, but extensive information on the follow-up has thus far failed to materialize.

However, when we recently spoke with Banderas in anticipation of the action sequel The Expendables 3, the actor revealed that he actually started work on Puss in Boots 2 a few days ago.  Hit the jump to read on.

Guillermo del Toro Talks RISE OF THE GUARDIANS, PUSS IN BOOTS 2, KUNG FU PANDA 3, TROLLHUNTERS, PACIFIC RIM, PAC RIM 2, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 274 days ago

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With Rise of the Guardians opening this week, I recently got to see the finished film at DreamWorks Animation and it’s really well done.  Not only is the animation great to look at, it’s got a strong story that’s character driven and it doesn’t rely on stupid jokes.  In addition, unlike most superhero films that spend half the time introducing characters by explaining their origin and showing off their powers, what’s fantastic about Rise of the Guardians is we join almost everyone in the middle of the story.  If you’re not familiar with the story, it  revolves around the rebellious Jack Frost (Chris Pine) teaming up with other mythical figures North aka Santa Claus (Alec Baldwin), E. Aster Bunnyman aka Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), Tooth aka The Tooth Fairy (Isla Fisher), and the Sandman to battle the evil Pitch (Jude Law).  Here’s my video blog review and all our previous coverage.

To help promote the film, last week I got on the phone with Rise of the Guardians producer Guillermo del Toro.  We talked about how they didn’t do a typical origin story, the tone, the Puss in Boots sequel, Kung Fu Panda 3, his DreamWorks Animation directorial debut Trollhunters, Pacific Rim, the 3D conversion, when we’ll see the trailer, the Pacific Rim sequel, and so much more.  Hit the jump for what del Toro had to say.

Guillermo del Toro Talks PUSS IN BOOTS 2, KUNG FU PANDA 3 & TROLLHUNTERS; Says PANDA 3 Has the “Most Formidable Villain in the Series”

by     Posted 1 year, 281 days ago

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It’s no secret that Guillermo del Toro is a busy guy.  At any given moment he’s developing a number of projects in various stages to write, produce, and/or direct, but fans can always rest assured that if del Toro lends his name to something, he puts his whole heart into it.  One of his more interesting recent collaborations has been with DreamWorks Animation.  He took on a small consulting role on the studio’s 2010 film Megamind, but since then he’s served as an executive producer on Puss in Boots, Kung Fu Panda 2, and the upcoming Rise of the Guardians.

Steve recently spoke with del Toro in anticipation of the release of Rise of the Guardians and the filmmaker gave updates on a number of future projects (read what he had to say about Pacific Rim and Pacific Rim 2 right here).  During the course of the conversation, del Toro gave updates on Puss in Boots 2, Kung Fu Panda 3, and an animated film called Trollhunters that he intends to direct for DreamWorks Animation.  Hit the jump to see what he had to say.

Weekend Box Office: WRECK-IT RALPH Earns High Score with $49.1 Million; FLIGHT Soars in Second

by     Posted 1 year, 289 days ago

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Though much of the East Coast is still a ruin, Hurricane Sandy did not dampen enthusiasm at the weekend box office. Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph was the easy winner with $49.1 million from 3,752 locations. In half as many venues, Paramount’s Flight beat all pre-release projections with its $25 million launch. And while Argo continued to exhibit amazing staying power in third, Universal’s The Man with the Iron Fists was less impressive. The martial arts debut earned an estimated $8.2 million from 1,868 runs for fourth place.

 Title
Weekend Total
1.  Wreck-It Ralph $49,100,000 $49.1
2.  Flight $25,010,000 $25
3.  Argo $10,245,000 $75.9
4.  The Man with the Iron Fists $8,200,000 $8.2
5.
 Taken 2 $6,000,000 $125.6
6.  Cloud Atlas $5,250,000 $18.2
7.  Hotel Transylvania $4,500,000 $137.5
8.  Paranormal Activity 4 $4,300,000 $49.5
9.  Here Comes the Boom $3,600,000 $35.5
10.  Silent Hill: Revelation 3D $3,300,000 $13.8

PUSS IN BOOTS Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 2 years, 141 days ago

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The Shrek film series has been pretty terrible for a while now. When the first film came out it was exciting and new, and seemed to suggest a Looney Tunes approach to the newfangled trend of CG animation. Alas, subsequent entries were terrible. They’ll probably go back to the Shrek well again, but until then, they’ve given us Puss in Boots, which is better than (though indebted to) the Shrek sequels by a wide margin. Antonio Banderas stars as the titular Puss, a womanizing feline who’s known as a great thief. Here he partners with Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek) and Humpty Dumpty (Zach Galifianakis) to plant the beanstalk seeds owned by Jack and Jill (Billy Bob Thorton, Amy Sedaris). Our review of the Blu-ray of Puss in Boots follows after the jump.

2012 Oscar Nominations Announced; HUGO and THE ARTIST Lead the Pack

by     Posted 2 years, 209 days ago

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The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.

There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.

HUGO, DRAGON TATTOO, and THE ARTIST Among ACE Nominees for Excellence in Editing

by     Posted 2 years, 217 days ago

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The American Cinema Editors have announced their list of nominees for the 62nd Annual Eddie Awards. Before you brush editing off as an insignificant category, take note that no film has won the Best Picture Oscar without at least a Best Editing Eddie nomination in 20 years. Martin Scorsese’s longtime collaborator Thelma Schoonmaker was nominated for her work on Hugo, as were last year’s Oscar winners Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Other films singled out include The Artist, The Descendants, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, and Young Adult.

On the television side of things, Breaking Bad, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Friday Night Lights, and Game of Thrones all landed nods. Hit the jump to see the full list of nominees. ACE’s 62nd awards ceremony, hosted by Patton Oswalt, will be held February 18th.

Antonio Banderas Talks HAYWIRE and the PUSS IN BOOTS Sequel; Wants to Direct, Produce, and Star in Sci-fi Project SOLO

by     Posted 2 years, 221 days ago

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With director Steven Soderbergh’s spy-action pic Haywire opening January 20th, this past weekend I got to sit down with most of the cast to talk about making the movie.  Starring MMA fighter Gina Carano as a burned spy who takes revenge against her handlers, Haywire also stars Channing Tatum, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor, Michael Angarano, Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas, and Bill Paxton.  I’ve seen Haywire twice now and it’s fantastic.  On top of Carano’s star-making performance, the action scenes are some of the best I’ve seen in years.   It’s absolutely something you should see in a theater.

During my interview with Banderas we talked about how he got involved in Haywire, his feelings on not being involved in more of the action scenes, karaoke, his home recording studio, and what’s up with the Puss in Boots sequel.   In addition, he talked about a sci-fi project that he’s developing (called Solo) which he would direct, produce and star in.  Hit the jump to watch.

97 Original Scores Up for Oscar; DRIVE and ATTACK THE BLOCK Ruled Ineligible

by     Posted 2 years, 241 days ago

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As the 84th Academy Awards move closer, we’re starting to get a better sense of how things will pan out. We recently shared the 39 songs that will contend for the Best Original Song category, and now the Academy has announced the 97 original scores eligible for the Best Original Score award. AMPAS is notoriously picky when it comes to eligibility in this category, and as we feared the scores for both Drive and Attack the Block have been deemed ineligible. Also disappointing is the ineligibility of Alexandre Desplat’s mesmerizing score for The Tree of Life.

While it’s upsetting to see some of the year’s best work side-lined, there’s plenty to be happy about. I was a huge fan of Howard Shore’s work in Hugo and Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross’s score for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, as well as The Chemical Brothers’ brilliant work in the criminally underseen Hanna. Hit the jump for the full list, as well as who I think will make the cut.

2012 Oscar Preview: Best Animated Feature, Best Original Screenplay, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Technical Category Quick Picks

by     Posted 2 years, 268 days ago

Continuing on with our look at the 2012 Oscar race, today we delve into Best Animated Feature and the technical categories. As Pixar’s Cars 2 was the studio’s worst-received feature to date (it currently sits at 38% on Rotten Tomatoes), we’ve got ourselves an actual competition in the Animated Feature category. Not only that, but if all 18 films that were submitted to the Academy are deemed eligible, we’ll have a total of five nominated films. This leaves us to debate the merits of Rango and The Adventures of Tintin against the likes of Puss in Boots and Arthur Christmas.

Additionally, we’ve taken a stab at Best Original Screenplay, Best Adapted Screenplay, and the technical categories. As these are incredibly tricky to predict this far out (and my picks would be doomed to haunt me come February), I’ve simply listed a couple of frontrunners in each category instead of going in depth. Though it’s still early, we’ve got an overall picture of how things look like they’ll stack up; so hit the jump to check out the state of the race so far. If you missed our previous preview articles, be sure to take a look at our picks for Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress, and Best Actor and Best Actress.

Weekend Box Office – IMMORTALS Stays On Top with $32 Million; JACK AND JILL Second with $26 Million

by     Posted 2 years, 281 days ago

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Jack and Jill gained some ground on Saturday, though not enough to slay the Immortals.  The 3D action/fantasy film finished first with an estimated $32 million from 3,112 locations. Considering that the film’s distributor was expecting a top opening of $26 million that has to be seen as a win.  And even if the film’s total does look somewhat anemic compared to past 3D hits, with the year we’ve had I’d prefer to focus on the positive.

Title Weekend Total
1 Immortals $32,000,000 $32
2 Jack and Jill $26,000,000 $26
3 Puss In Boots $25,500,000 $108.8
4 Tower Heist $13,200,000 $43.9
5 J. Edgar $11,470,000 $11.5
6 Harold and Kumar 3D $5,900,000 $23.2
7 In Time $4,150,000 $30.6
8 Paranormal Activity 3 $3,625,000 $100.8
9 Footloose $2,735,000 $48.8
10 Real Steel $2,000,000 $81.7

Weekend Box Office – PUSS IN BOOTS Snatches First Place from TOWER HEIST with $33 Million

by     Posted 2 years, 288 days ago

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And the bad news for new releases just keeps coming. Despite placing first on Friday, the Universal comedy Tower Heist could not pull off a weekend win. The all-star ensemble took in just $25.1 million from 3,367 locations or ten million less than it was expected to command. The culprit? Looks like audiences who kept Puss In Boots at the low end of its own projections last weekend came out in force for round two: giving the Dreamworks Animation release an impressive 97% hold and a second week at number one.

Title Weekend Total
1 Puss In Boots $33,000,000 $75.5
2 Tower Heist $25,100,000 $25.1
3 Harold and Kumar 3D $13,100,000 $13.1
4 Paranormal Activity 3 $8,525,000 $95.3
5 In Time $7,700,000 $24.2
6 Footloose $4,550,000 $48.8
7 Real Steel $3,407,000 $78.7
8 The Rum Diary $2,987,000 $10.4
9 Ides of March $2,000,000 $36.8
10 Moneyball $1,900,000 $70.3

Friday Box Office – TOWER HEIST Breaks In with $8.1 Million; HAROLD AND KUMAR 3D Looks Soft in Third

by     Posted 2 years, 289 days ago

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Despite a couple of big weekends, overall box office was down by over 10% in October.  That means that November has to be a blockbuster for this year to have a chance of breaking even.  Too bad it’s not going to get a lot of support from its first batch of new releases.  Tower Heist debuted at number one with an estimated $8.1 million from 3,367 locations.  While not bad, it’s also not the overwhelming win that Universal was looking for from their all-star ensemble.  Even worse, the comedy has a good chance of losing its number one stats to Puss In Boots by Sunday.  Last weekend’s number one film may have been held back by that freak East Coast snow storm; meaning the family film could experience a better than expected hold and a second weekend leading the box office.  Finally, a 3D price premium did not do much for the latest Harold and Kumar comedy.  A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas took in an estimated $5.4 from its 2,875 locations and is expected to end the weekend with around $15 million: or roughly the equivalent of what Harold and Kumar 2 earned for its own two dimensional debut in 2008.  We’ll have details and analysis tomorrow.

Title Friday Total
1 Tower Heist $8,100,000 $8.1
2 Puss In Boots $7,800,000 $50.2
3 Harold and Kumar 3D $5,400,000 $5.4
4 Paranormal Activity 3 $2,900,000 $89.6
5 In Time $2,500,000 $19

18 Animated Feature Films Submit for 84th Annual Academy Awards

by     Posted 2 years, 290 days ago

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Under consideration for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature will be 18 contenders, some of which have yet to have their qualifying runs on screen. Major features include The Adventures of Tintin, Rango and Cars 2. Disney/Pixar has won 6 out of 10 years, while winning the last four in a row, but with DreamWorks’ Kung Fu Panda 2 and Puss in Boots in the running, it could very well be their turn. Though there are some dark horses in the mix.

Submitted films must satisfy the category’s qualifying rules, including their theatrical release, in order to continue the submission process. In order to activate the award category at all, no fewer than 8 animated features must be released in theaters in Los Angeles County within the calendar year. If these films meet requirements for other categories, including Best Picture, they may be eligible for those awards as well. Hit the jump to see the full list.

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