Director Shawn Levy Talks THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU, Fidelity to the Book, Casting Adam Driver, Deleted Scenes, THE INTERNSHIP, and More

by     Posted 5 days ago

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While at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival I landed an awesome interview with director Shawn Levy for This is Where I Leave You.  As I’ve said many times, I really enjoyed the film due to the great performances and the very funny script.  The story revolves around a dysfunctional family that is forced to come together and sit Shiva when their father dies, which opens old wounds and reignites passions that have long been repressed.  This is Where I Leave You stars Jason BatemanTina FeyAdam Driver, Corey StollJane FondaRose Byrne, Kathryn HahnConnie BrittonBen SchwartzTimothy OlyphantAaron LazarDebra MonkAbigail Spencer, and Dax Shepard.  For more on This is Where I Leave Youread Adam’s review or watch the trailer.

During the extended video interview Levy talked about how he was finally offered the project after chasing it for years, how he worked with author/screenwriter Jonathan Tropper to make the script more dramatic, how Warner Bros. let him pick the cast in exchange for keeping the budget down, what he had to do to get Adam Driver in the film, deleted scenes,  how he didn’t anticipate the Google tie-in backlash on The Internship and how he should have released the R-rated version, future projects, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.

THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU Review

by     Posted 10 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my This Is Where I Leave You review from the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.  The film opens in theaters nationwide today.]

Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans, or so the saying goes.  There are some trite phrases that, while clichéd, kind of ring true, and in the case of This Is Where I Leave You, director Shawn Levy’s adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel of the same name, the Altman family has certainly seen better days.  The patriarch’s dying wish was to have his entire family sit shiva for seven days to mourn his death, and when the Altman clan reunites to fulfill his request, old wounds are opened, past relationships are rekindled, and all are reminded that this isn’t exactly how they envisioned their lives turning out.  Buoyed by a stellar ensemble and a standout performance from Adam Driver, Levy mostly succeeds in bringing Tropper’s novel to the screen with plenty of humor, heart, and sentiment.  While Levy goes overboard with the schmaltz here and there and a couple of the storylines are undercooked, the film’s mix of sincerity and biting humor is ultimately a swell combination.

Director Shawn Levy Talks THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU, Michael Giacchino, the Deleted Sex Scene Between Adam Driver and Connie Britton, and More

by     Posted 13 days ago

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Opening this weekend after premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival is director Shawn Levy’s (Real Steel) adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel This Is Where I Leave You.   Featuring a fantastic ensemble cast including Jason BatemanTina FeyAdam Driver, Corey StollJane FondaRose Byrne,Kathryn HahnConnie BrittonBen SchwartzTimothy OlyphantAaron LazarDebra MonkAbigail Spencer, and Dax Shepard, the story revolves around a dysfunctional family that is forced to come together and sit Shiva when their father dies, opening old wounds and reigniting passions that have long-since been repressed.  Loaded with great performances and a very funny script, I definitely recommend seeing the film this weekend.  For more on This is Where I Leave Youread Adam’s review or watch the trailer.

A few days ago I landed an exclusive video interview with director Shawn Levy.  He discussed how he was able to get composer Michael Giacchino to score the film, the deleted sex scene between Adam Driver and Connie Britton and why he cut it out of the film, why it won’t be included on the Blu-ray, the toughest scene to shoot, and more.  Hit the jump to watch.

Shawn Levy Says He’s Been ‘Quietly Developing’ REAL STEEL 2

by     Posted 21 days ago

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We were talking Real Steel 2 well before the first film even came out, but now, three years later, we’re still without that sequel.  However, that doesn’t mean director Shawn Levy isn’t thinking about it.  In fact, he said he’s been “quietly developing” it for years now.

The first film starred Hugh Jackman as Charlie Kenton, a washed-up boxer who turns to robot boxing to make a living.  After his robot is destroyed in a fight, Charlie’s stuck without a contender and with a significant amount of debt, leaving him with no choice, but to try and turn an old sparring bot named Atom into a champion.  Hit the jump to find out what Levy had to say about the sequel.

THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU Review | TIFF 2014

by     Posted 22 days ago

this-is-where-i-leave-you-review

Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans, or so the saying goes.  There are some trite phrases that, while clichéd, kind of ring true, and in the case of This Is Where I Leave You, director Shawn Levy’s adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel of the same name, the Altman family has certainly seen better days.  The patriarch’s dying wish was to have his entire family sit shiva for seven days to mourn his death, and when the Altman clan reunites to fulfill his request, old wounds are opened, past relationships are rekindled, and all are reminded that this isn’t exactly how they envisioned their lives turning out.  Buoyed by a stellar ensemble and a standout performance from Adam Driver, Levy mostly succeeds in bringing Tropper’s novel to the screen with plenty of humor, heart, and sentiment.  While Levy goes overboard with the schmaltz here and there and a couple of the storylines are undercooked, the film’s mix of sincerity and biting humor is ultimately a swell combination.

Over 45 High-Resolution THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU Images Featuring Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Corey Stoll, Adam Driver and Many, Many More

by     Posted 26 days ago

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You know what happens when you’ve got a movie starring Jason BatemanTina FeyAdam Driver, Corey StollJane FondaRose ByrneKathryn HahnConnie BrittonTimothy OlyphantDebra Monk and Abigail Spencer?  You’re going to need a lot of images to promote it and, sure enough, we just over 45 new ones for Shawn Levy’s adaptation of Jonathan Tropper’s novel, This Is Where I Leave You. 

This one made Adam’s Most Anticipated Movies: July to September list and it’s no wonder; not only is the film’s trailer oozing with famous faces and cast chemistry, but it’s also just a total feel-good, crowd-pleaser.  We’ll have to wait until it hits theaters on September 19th to see the film in full, but in the meantime, enjoy 45 This Is Where I Leave You images after the jump.

NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB Trailer: The Action Moves to London to Bring One Last Museum to Life

by     Posted 61 days ago

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The very first Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb trailer is here.  After saving the day (or night) at the Museum of Natural History and the Smithsonian, Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) is off to the British Museum in London where he hopes to uncover more secrets about the mysterious tablet that brings the museum figures to life.  I’ve only seen bits and pieces of the previous two films so I can’t speak to how this trailer stacks up to the rest of the franchise, but there are some genuinely funny bits throughout.  Rebel Wilson looks to be a scene stealer as a British security guard, and there’s an amusing running joke involving a caveman that looks exactly like Stiller.  The British setting is also a smart move, as it should provide plenty of fresh opportunities for the series as a whole.  The Museum franchise has always skewed younger, though, and I imagine kids will find Secret of the Tomb to be a swell new adventure.

Hit the jump to catch the trailer for the third and final installment of the Night at the Museum series.  The film also stars Robin Williams, Dan Stevens, Ben KingsleyRicky GervaisRami MalekSteve CooganOwen WilsonPatrick GallagherMizuo PeckBill CobbsDick Van Dyke, and Mickey Rooney, and is due in theaters on December 19th.

First THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU Trailer Features a Grieving Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, and Adam Driver

by     Posted 124 days ago

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Warner Bros. has released the first This Is Where I Leave You trailer for director Shawn Levy’s (Real Steel) adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel.  The story revolves around a dysfunctional family that is forced to come together and sit shiva when their father dies, opening old wounds and reigniting passions that have long-since been repressed.  This movie throws a lot of talented actors together, and it looks like they’re playing off each other wonderfully.  I was smiling throughout this trailer, and I’m glad that there appears to be so much chemistry among this amazing cast.

Hit the jump to watch the This Is Where I Leave You trailer.  The film stars Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver, Corey Stoll, Jane FondaRose Byrne, Kathryn Hahn, Connie Britton, Ben Schwartz, Timothy Olyphant, Aaron Lazar, Debra MonkAbigail Spencer, and Dax ShepardThis Is Where I Leave You opens on September 12th.

First Look at Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver, and Many More in THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU

by     Posted 137 days ago

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The first This Is Where I Leave You image has landed online for director Shawn Levy’s (Real Steel) adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel.  The story revolves around a dysfunctional family that is forced to come together and sit shiva when their father dies, opening old wounds and reigniting passions that have long-since been repressed.  The fantastic ensemble cast of the comedic drama is led by Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Cory Stoll, and Adam Driver as the Foxman siblings, with Jane Fonda playing their psychologist mother.  I’ve read the book and it’s a sharply comedic and rather emotional chronicle of this relatable, dysfunctional family, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how Levy and his cast bring the story to life—especially with Tropper penning the script himself.

Hit the jump to check out the full cast in the debut This Is Where I Leave You image.  The film also stars Rose Byrne, Kathryn Hahn, Corey Stoll, Connie Britton, Ben Schwartz, Timothy Olyphant, Aaron Lazar, Debra Monk, and the not-pictured Abigail Spencer and Dax ShepardThis Is Where I Leave You opens on September 12th.

Shawn Levy to Direct THE CITY THAT SAILED for 20th Century Fox, Officially Starring Will Smith

by     Posted 319 days ago

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20th Century Fox has tapped Shawn Levy (Night at the Museum) to direct the adventure picture The City That Sailed, now officially starring Will Smith (Independence Day).  Scripted by Audrey Wells (The Game Plan), the story “centers on a father and daughter on the island of Manhattan as it breaks loose and sails across the Atlantic Ocean.”  With Smith as the father, I’ll give you three guesses on who will likely play the daughter.  Hit the jump for more.

Universal in Talks to Pick Up THE 39 CLUES from Turnaround; Shawn Levy No Longer Attached to Direct

by     Posted 1 year, 39 days ago

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The feature film adaptation of the adventure novel series The 39 Clues continues to linger in development.  The Scholastic book series was initially picked up by DreamWorks as a potential directorial project for Steven Spielberg, but Brett Ratner was subsequently tapped to take the helm.  Ratner’s iteration of the film never came together, and Night at the Museum helmer Shawn Levy signed on to direct earlier last year.  We hadn’t heard much about the project in the meantime, and it appears that was for good reason: DreamWorks put the project in turnaround.  Now THR reports that Universal Pictures is in negotiations to acquire the rights from DW, with the hopes of finally getting the film off the ground.

As part of the Universal deal, however, Levy is no longer attached to direct. The filmmaker has a fairly busy slate anyway, though, as he recently wrapped the family drama This Is Where I Leave You and will next direct Night at the Museum 3.  Hit the jump for a synopsis of The 39 Clues.

THE INTERNSHIP Review

by     Posted 1 year, 115 days ago

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A film that feels like one long advertisement shouldn’t be much of a shock.  Advertising surrounds us (it even surrounds this review you’re reading), and while some companies will settle for product placement or marketing tie-ins, that’s small-time thinking.  Google is a portal to the Internet, and if it’s going to be in a movie, it’s going to be the movie.  If most reviews say that The Internship feels like one giant advertisement for Google, that’s only because it’s pretty much true.  Shawn Levy‘s comedy is filled with stock characters, lethargic storytelling, and slogs through a bloated runtime as stars Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson try to scrap together any laughs they can.  Even though Google dominates the picture, The Internship undermines the company by making it look like the most superficial and horrible place to work.

First Clip from Shawn Levy’s THE INTERNSHIP Starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson

by     Posted 1 year, 144 days ago

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The first clip from director Shawn Levy’s corporate comedy The Internship features stars Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson participating in an online interview.  As two out-of-work salesmen looking to reinvent themselves in a digital world, it’s immediately apparent that they’re out of touch with modern technology.  The Wedding Crashers chemistry is on display so if you liked it before, it looks like you’re in for more of the same.  Be sure to get caught up on Steve’s set visit, including interviews with Levy, Wilson and Vaughn.

Also starring Rose Byrne, B.J. Novak, John Goodman, Dylan O’Brien and Josh Gad, The Internship opens June 7th.  Hit the jump to watch the clip.

Shawn Levy Talks Bridging the Generation Gap, Filming for Both an R & PG-13 Rating, His Filmmaking Career, Future Projects, & More on the Set of THE INTERNSHIP

by     Posted 1 year, 145 days ago

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Coming off the worldwide success of Real Steel, director Shawn Levy had his pick of projects.  And while it seemed like a few other movies might have gotten to the starting line first, after meeting and collaborating with Vince Vaughn on The Watch (which Levy produced), the actor pitched him on the idea of The Internship, and they started filming soon after.

During a break in production on set last year, I was able to interview Levy with a movie reporter from Yahoo.  We talked about getting Google to sign off, how he edits what he shoots that day, the soundtrack, filming for both a PG-13 or an R rating, having actors that are great improvisers, why he’s using a digital camera, future projects such Project Aloha, Night at the Museum 3, 39 Clues, Fantastic Voyage, and Real Steel 2, and a lot more.  Hit the jump for what he had to say, but be aware that there are some spoilers regarding cameos in The Internship.

New Images from THE INTERNSHIP Starring Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn

by     Posted 1 year, 151 days ago

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20th Century Fox has provided us with a number of new images from director Shawn Levy‘s The Internship, and a few of them are exclusive.  If you’re not familiar with The Internship, which opens June 7th, the film reteams Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn as two out-of-work salesmen who attempt to reinvent themselves by competing against young up-and-comers for an internship at Google.  The film also stars Max MinghellaRose ByrneDylan O’Brien, and Jessica Szohr.

Last year I got to visit the set when they were filming in Atlanta, and I watched the cast film a very funny scene featuring everyone getting to know one another.  In take after take, I saw the way Vaughn, Wilson and Levy would slightly adjust the dialogue and reactions so they’d have plenty of choices in the editing room.  In addition, it was great to see the cast and crew try and hold it together until Levy called cut.  As soon as he did, the room lit up with laughter.  Based on what I saw and learned on set, I think The Internship is going to be a winner.  Hit the jump for the images.

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