Oscar Beat: The Best Director Race at a Glance

by     Posted 19 minutes ago

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As we head out of the Thanksgiving holiday, studios have been scrambling to get screeners out to critics and voters before early December deadlines, and some of the year’s later releases are finally starting to be seen, which means the Oscar race is becoming much clearer.  We already have one potentially huge game-changer in the form of Selma, which has enjoyed enthusiastically positive response from its initial screenings, but that film also throws a curious prospect into the mix: for the first time in history, could we actually have two female directors nominated for the Best Director Oscar?

After the jump, I consider this question as I take a look at the current state of the rather crowded Best Director race in this edition of Oscar Beat.

New INTO THE WOODS Images Feature Johnny Depp’s Big Bad Wolf, Anna Kendrick’s Cinderella, and More

by     Posted 37 days ago

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Earlier this morning, we got our first look at Johnny Depp’s Big Bad Wolf from director Rob Marshall’s (Chicago) upcoming musical adaptation Into the Woods.  It’s an interesting look to say the least, and while I figured the reason Depp was left out of the trailer was because his character would be CG-aided, it turns out he’s actually just wearing what looks like a relatively cheap Halloween costume.  Indeed, Depp tells EW Marshall let him put his own spin on the character:

“Rob Marshall wasn’t afraid to let me take the role to a level of heightened reality, almost cartoon-like, where one second the Wolf is here, and then, boom, suddenly he’s over there.”

Nevertheless, the film still has promise with its fantastic ensemble and twisty premise, and some new Into the Woods images have now landed online that give some different looks at Depp’s wolf, Anna Kendrick’s Cinderella, Chris Pine’s Prince Charming, and more.  Take a look at the new Into the Woods images after the jump.  The film also stars Emily Blunt, James Corden, Meryl Streep, Lucy PunchChristine Baranski, and more. Into the Woods opens in theaters on December 25th.

Entertainment Weekly’s INTO THE WOODS Covers Offer First Look at Johnny Depp’s The Wolf

by     Posted 37 days ago

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There are stills of Emily Blunt, James Corden, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine and Meryl Streep in Into the Woods and we also got a few solid shots of them in the film’s trailer too, but what about Johnny Depp’s The Wolf?  Depp got a title card in that trailer, but then he just hid behind a tree.  Now it turns out, that was a good thing.

The new edition of Entertainment Weekly puts the spotlight on Rob Marshall’s rendition of the Stephen Sondheim musical with four different collector’s covers and one of them gives us our very first look at Depp in full costume and makeup.  Hit the jump to check out the Into the Woods covers for yourself.  The film also stars Lilla CrawfordMackenzie Mauzy, Daniel HuttlestoneTracey Ullman and Christine Baranski, and is set to hit theaters on December 25th.

INTO THE WOODS Trailer: Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, Johnny Depp, and More Get Musical

by     Posted 120 days ago

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Disney has released the first trailer for the fairy tale musical Into the Woods, directed by Rob Marshall (Chicago).  James Corden and Emily Blunt star as a couple who encounter Brothers Grimm characters while on a quest to reverse a curse that keeps them from starting a family.  This is very much a teaser trailer, which unfortunately means we don’t get to hear any of the songs just yet; this trailer is very much focused on introducing the cast and the magical world.  Marshall’s first foray into tentpole moviemaking with Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides was a bit of a misfire, but Into the Woods looks to combine the large-canvas sensibilities of that film with the theatrical quality of Chicago.  He’s assembled an incredibly talented cast to bring Into the Woods to fruition, so if he can deliver from a directorial standpoint (and if the songs turn out well), we could be in for something quite special.

Into the Woods stars Meryl Streep, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Johnny Depp, Lilla Crawford, Daniel Huttlestone, Tracey Ullman, and Christine Baranski, and opens December 25th.  Hit the jump to watch the first Into the Woods trailer, and click here to see the recently released images.

Production Begins on Disney’s Musical INTO THE WOODS Starring Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, Johnny Depp, Chris Pine, and Anna Kendrick

by     Posted 1 year, 73 days ago

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Filming is underway in London on director Rob Marshall’s (Chicago) feature film adaptation of James Lapine’s Tony-winning stage musical Into the Woods.  The Disney prouduction stars James Corden 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 characters like Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, and Cinderella.  Meryl Streep plays the villainous witch, Johnny Depp is set to portray the Big Bad Wolf, Chris Pine is Cinderella’s prince, and Anna Kendrick steps into the role of Cinderella.

Talented actors and actress from the stage and screen fill out the rest of the cast, and Stephen Sondheim has contributed a new original song to the feature.  Lapine penned the screenplay, and the behind-the-scenes team includes legendary costume designer Colleen Atwood.  Hit the jump to read the full press release, which runs down every role.  Into the Woods opens in theaters December 25, 2014.

Anna Kendrick in Talks to Play Cinderella in Musical INTO THE WOODS; Daniel Huttlestone Joins Cast

by     Posted 1 year, 160 days ago

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The world will soon have dueling Cinderellas to contend with; and from the same studio no less.  Lily James is poised to play the title character in Disney’s Kenneth Branagh-directed redo Cinderella, and now the lovely Anna Kendrick is in talks to put on the glass slipper for Disney’s musical Into the Woods.  Based on the Broadway musical of the same name, the Rob Marshall-directed film stars James Corden 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 characters like Rapunzel and Little Red Riding Hood, which is where Kendrick’s Cinderella comes in.  The move doesn’t come as a huge surprise, as Kendrick actually read the Cinderella part during a big table read of the script that Marshall set up last year.

Hit the jump for more on this star-studded project.

Emily Blunt in Talks for Female Lead Opposite Johnny Depp in Disney Musical INTO THE WOODS; Christine Baranski Joins Cast

by     Posted 1 year, 196 days ago

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Disney has been furiously casting director Rob Marshall’s (Chicago) musical adaptation Into the Woods over the past few weeks, and now a couple more exciting cast members are being added.  Variety reports that Emily Blunt is in talks to play the female lead in the film, which centers on a Baker and his wife as they venture into the woods to confront the witch responsible for putting a curse on the childless couple.  Broadway actor James Corden is set to play the film’s male lead, the Baker, while Meryl Streep is set as the witch and Johnny Depp is signed on in an unspecified role.

We learned last night that Chris Pine and Jake Gyllenhaal are also in talks to play the love interests of Cinderella and Rapunzel in the film (yes, they’ll sing), and The Wrap adds that Christine Baranski (The Good Wife) is in talks to reteam with her Chicago director on the pic.  Production is expected to get underway this fall on what is turning out to be one hell of a musical ensemble.

Johnny Depp in Talks to Join Disney’s Musical Adaptation INTO THE WOODS

by     Posted 1 year, 216 days ago

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Johnny Depp is looking to stretch his musical chops once more.  The Sweeney Todd actor has entered talks to join Meryl Streep in Disney’s adaptation of the Broadway musical Into the Woods, which will be helmed by Depp’s Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides director Rob Marshall.  The film has been in the works for some time now, and it’s a fairy tale-infused story that centers around “a childless baker and his wife who attempt to life a family course by journeying into the woods to confront the witch that put a spell on them.”  During their journey, they encounter a number of classic fairy tale characters like Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, and Jack from Jack and the Beanstalk.  Hit the jump for more.

Patrick Wilson Talks THE CONJURING, Rob Marshall’s INTO THE WOODS, CAUGHT STEALING, an INSIDIOUS Sequel, WATCHMEN, and More

by     Posted 2 years, 38 days ago

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One of the many films to premiere footage at this year’s New York Comic-Con was director James Wan‘s (Insidious) supernatural thriller The Conjuring.  The film stars Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga as “a husband and wife team of demonologists and psychic investigators who enter the most horrifying case of their career, spirits in a Rhode Island farmhouse.”  Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor play a couple who unknowingly move into the haunted farmhouse with their kids.  For more on the film, here’s Matt’s recap of the Comic-Con panel.

Shortly before the panel started, I saw down with Wilson for an exclusive video interview.  We talked about how he got involved in The Conjuring and what attracted him to the material, what it’s like attending a comic convention after playing Nite Owl in Watchmen, what’s his favorite cut of the film, his thoughts on walking around a future convention in costume as Nite Owl, an adaptation of Caught Stealing, the status of an Insidious sequel, what it was like to do a reading for Rob Marshall‘s screen adaptation of Into the Woods, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Meryl Streep in Talks for Lead in Rob Marshall’s INTO THE WOODS; Anna Kendrick, Patrick Wilson, and More Read for Roles

by     Posted 2 years, 55 days ago

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Following the success (commercially, that is) of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, director Rob Marshall was mulling a couple of projects as his follow-up.  After his remake of The Thin Man with Johnny Depp was put on hold, the Chicago director set his sights on returning to the world of song and dance for his next film.  Marshall is prepping an adaptation of the fairy tale-themed musical Into the Woods for Disney, and he recently held a star-studded screenplay read that included the likes of Anna Kendrick, Patrick Wilson, Allison Janney, and many more.  Additionally, it sounds like he may have settled on Meryl Streep for the lead role of the Witch.

Hit the jump for more, including the full list of actors who were in attendance for the screenplay reading.

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 5 May Shoot in Puerto Rico Starting This November [Update: Disney Calls Report Inaccurate, Says Film is Still in Development]

by     Posted 2 years, 76 days ago

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In a recent interview with Geoffrey Rush, the Pirates of the Caribbean star confessed he had no idea when the fifth installment would be going forward.  But now we know where it’s going, at least.  Pirates of the Caribbean 5 appears to be headed to Puerto Rico to start shooting this November. That’s good news, since the status of the film is somewhat in flux, with Rob Marshall (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) possibly returning to direct and the script in the process of being finalized. As we all know, the next installment (and the franchise itself) sets its course by its star, Johnny Depp.  Should we expect to see him in Puerto Rico this fall?  Hit the jump for more.

Warner Bros. Stalls THE THIN MAN with Johnny Depp

by     Posted 2 years, 159 days ago

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Director Rob Marshall now has a little more time to find a fitting actress to star opposite Johnny Depp in The Thin Man, as Warner Bros. has put a halt to production on the remake.  Depp was set to star as Nick Charles, one half of a married couple who solves murder mysteries while bantering back and forth and almost getting killed themselves.  This delay is, at the moment, less of a behind-the-scenes melodrama and more due to practicality.  Deadline reports that Depp is eager to take a break between films.  This also allows Marshall to move forward with his long-gestating Disney project, Into the Woods, a feature version of Stephen Sondheim’s fairy-tale musical.  Though The Thin Man was never officially greenlit, there is also some talk of budget concerns, which will likely push back the planned November start while the particulars are sorted out.

Contenders to Star Opposite Johnny Depp in THE THIN MAN Include Emma Stone, Kristen Wiig, Emily Blunt and More

by     Posted 2 years, 243 days ago

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It’s time for another shortlist story as apparently every actress in Hollywood is looking to star opposite Johnny Depp in the remake of The Thin Man. Chicago and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides director Rob Marshall is onboard to helm the adaptation of Dashiell Hammett’s novel, which itself was turned into a 1934 feature film. The story centers on private detective-turned-socialite Nick Charles and his charming wife Nora as they’re drawn into investigating a murder. Depp is, obviously, set to play the dashing detective, and now Marshall is set to meet with a slew of actresses to cast the lovely Nora. Hit the jump to find out who’s up for the gig.

Rob Marshall to Direct Steven Sondheim’s INTO THE WOODS for Disney; Gives Brief Update on PIRATES 5

by     Posted 2 years, 322 days ago

Director Rob Marshall is heading back to musicals. After helming Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Marshall signed on to direct a remake of the 1934 film The Thin Man with Johnny Depp attached to star, and now he’s set to reteam with Disney on a feature film version of Stephen Sondheim’s fairy tale-themed musical Into the Woods. Marshall got his start as a choreographer before bursting onto the scene with 2002’s Oscar-winning movie musical Chicago, and now he’s poised to return to the world of song and dance. Hit the jump for more.

David Koepp to Write Rob Marshall’s THE THIN MAN Starring Johnny Depp

by     Posted 3 years, 90 days ago

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Screenwriter David Koepp (Spider-Man) has been tapped to write Rob Marshall’s adaptation of Dashiell Hammett’s The Thin Man starring Johnny Depp.  The 1934 novel follows retired detective Nick Charles who is trying to happily live his life with his charming wife Nora and their dog Asta.  However, when one of Charles’ former client Clyde Wynant goes missing and his secretary turns up dead, Nick is reluctantly drawn back into the case and the web of intrigue created by Wynant’s terrible family. Also, everyone in the book, particularly Nick and Nora, drinks like a fish but hardly anyone gets drunk.  Hammett’s novel was successfully adapted into a franchise starring William Powell and Myrna Loy although Hammett only wrote one novel featuring Nick and Nora.

Hit the jump for more on this story and my thoughts on adapting The Thin Man.

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