Frank Grillo Talks THE PURGE: ANARCHY, Making the Film in the Tradition of 1970′s Action Thrillers, THE RAID Remake, and More

by     Posted 4 days ago

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Now playing in theaters is The Purge: Anarchy, James DeMonaco’s ambitious follow up to last summer’s surprise hit The Purge. For the sequel DeMonaco takes to the streets with more action, a bigger cast of characters, and a deeper exploration of the world established in the first film. As “Sergeant”, the taciturn anti-hero, Frank Grillo is an old-school “man’s man”. A good guy with big guns, a cool car, and a bad agenda. See, while our other protagonists are stuck outside fighting for their lives, he’s there on purpose. He’s there to purge, to exact vengeance. But “Sergeant” is thrust into the role of reluctant hero when he stumbles across a group of innocent survivors and realizes that he can’t just stand by and let bad things happen to good people. The Purge: Anarchy also stars Carmen Ejogo, Zach Gilford, Kiele Sanchez, Zoe Soul and Michael K. Williams.

I recently sat down with Grillo for an exclusive video interview. We talked about how the film harkens back to the action thrillers of the 1970′s, creating a character in that tradition, his love for making action films, and more. He also talked about the upcoming remake of The Raid and why he won’t make it if it’s not up to par. Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Frank Grillo Talks KINGDOM, His Involvement in THE RAID Remake, the Potential for More Rumlow / Crossbones in CAPTAIN AMERICA 3, and More

by     Posted 42 days ago

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The world needs more Frank Grillo.  Not only is he a top-notch actor and kick-ass action star, but he’s also a super nice guy and absolute pleasure to interview, too.  He’s delivered quality material throughout his career, but the past three years have marked one standout success after the next with Grillo going from Warrior to The Grey then End of Watch, Zero Dark Thirty and he keeps tacking on more.

While talking to Grillo about his next big release, The Purge: Anarchy, he also took the time to update Collider on a number of upcoming projects.  He gave us some details on his character in the new DirecTV series, Kingdom, confirmed that he’s officially attached to Patrick HughesThe Raid remake, discussed the status of his seemingly long-lost horror movie, Demonic, and also hinted at Rumlow’s return in Captain America 3. You can check out the video of Grillo talking about all four projects and read his comments after the jump.

THE RAID Remake Delayed until Early 2015

by     Posted 60 days ago

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Just about a week ago we reported that Patrick Hughes’ remake of The Raid would be filming this September.  Don’t sharpen your machetes just yet, as new reports state that production has been pushed back until the first quarter of 2015.  Pre-production on the Screen Gems picture has stopped though sources insist the project has not been put into turnaround.

The delay likely has to do with casting, as no cast members have been announced just yet.  Some reports insist that no offers have been made nor sent out, while others say that the project was close to a green light with Luke Evans, Anthony Mackie, Frank Grillo and Ethan Hawke as frontrunners for roles.  Hughes remains attached to direct but producers may well be searching for a bigger name to lead the remake.  For more from Hughes’ take on The Raid, make sure to check out Steve’s recent interview with the director here.  Hit the jump to watch the trailer for the original film.

Patrick Hughes’ Remake of THE RAID to Start Filming in September

by     Posted 68 days ago

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Fans of Gareth EvansThe Raid know that a remake is a fool’s errand.  Even if someone was able to match Evans’ expert direction, they would still need a highly-trained cast of martial arts masters, and those masters aren’t famous enough to draw in casual moviegoers.  If they did, the original film would probably be a monster hit.  So while The Raid remake could still be successful on its own terms, people who have seen the original will know that it’s a remake in name only.  However, when Steve spoke with the remake’s director, Patrick Hughes, on the set of his upcoming film The Expendables 3, Hughes said, “if anything we’re looking to match the action, but also to have a really distinct take on it.”  I admire his ambition.

Deadline is reporting that filming on The Raid remake is set to begin in September, but there are currently no details beyond that.  There still hasn’t been any casting, although there was a rumor that the studio was seeking to cast Chris and Liam Hemsworth.

Director Patrick Hughes Talks THE EXPENDABLES 3, How He Landed the Job, the Action Sequences, Putting the Cast Together, THE RAID Remake, and More

by     Posted 101 days ago

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Last year, when The Expendables 3 was filming in Bulgaria, I got to visit the set with a few other reporters.   As most of you know, The Expendables 3 has Sylvester Stallone’s Barney Ross and his Expendables crew squaring off against Ross’ old partner Conrad Stonebanks, played by Mel Gibson.  Returning for the sequel are Jason StathamJet LiDolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews and Arnold Schwarzenegger, with Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas, Kelsey Grammer and Harrison Ford joining the cast along with Kellan LutzGlen PowellRobert Davi, MMA star Ronda Rousey, and welterweight boxing champion Victor Ortiz.

While on set, one of the people I really wanted to talk to was director Patrick Hughes.  But as you might imagine, he was incredibly busy trying to make his day, so we were never able to get any time with him.  Thankfully, last week Lionsgate set up an exclusive phone interview with him, so after the jump you can read what he had to say about landing the job, his approach to capturing the action, the experience of directing the incredible cast, what it was like working with Stallone, his take on The Raid remake and how it differs from the original, and so much more.

New Images from THE RAID 2 Provide Neat 3D Effect; Atlanta Readers Should Come to Saturday Night’s Atlanta Film Festival Screening

by     Posted 115 days ago

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Even though The Raid 2 officially opened last Friday, it was in limited release, so if you don’t live in New York or L.A., it needs to say on your radar if you liked the first movie.  New images have been released promoting the movie, and they provide a cool 3D effect by putting the motion of a GIF overlapped with a white background.  Please note that the movie is not in 3D, but these images are catchy.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  Also, if you live in Atlanta, please come out to the Atlanta Film Festival screening on Saturday night at 11pmThis is a movie you want to see with a crowd, and everyone willing to come out late on a Saturday night is going to be pumped for some ultra-violence.  Tickets are only $10, so click here to go to the purchase page.

THE RAID 2 Review

by     Posted 120 days ago

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[This is a re-post of my review from the 2014 Sundance Film Festival.  The Raid 2 opens today in limited release.]

When Gareth EvansThe Raid premiered at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival, audiences were floored. It was as if someone had smacked us in the face about 800 times, and showed us that the action being churned out by Hollywood wasn’t half as effective as it could be. No amount of CGI could ever pack the punch of a perfectly choreographed, perfectly shot, and perfectly edited fight scene. The original’s barebones plot allowed the movie to mainline the action and get the adrenaline pumping. It also created high expectations for The Raid 2. Whereas the first movie was mean and lean, the sequel is epic and explosive with a twisting crime drama serving as the backdrop for some of the best action scenes you’ll ever see. The violence is brutal; the set pieces are brilliant; and the movie hits so hard that your grandchildren will have bruises.

Deleted Scene from THE RAID 2 Features Bullets and Buckets of Blood in an All-Out Gang War

by     Posted 122 days ago

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An extended deleted scene from The Raid 2 has been released online.  The film picks up directly after the events of the first pic, as rookie cop Rama (Iko Uwais) must go undercover in the criminal underworld to protect his wife and infant son after his raid of a gangster-ridden high-rise attracted the attention of some very bad, powerful people.  I haven’t seen the film since January (my review), so I don’t know where this scene would take place or the reasoning behind it.  Honestly, the details don’t really matter since it’s an action showcase that doesn’t show any of the main characters.  Instead, it’s yet another example of director Gareth Evans‘ skill at directing action, and the movie’s extreme violence.

Hit the jump to check out the clip.  The Raid 2 opens in limited release on March 28th.

Before You Watch This New Trailer for THE RAID 2, Make Sure You Have Health Insurance

by     Posted 128 days ago

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The new trailer for writer-director Gareth Evans’ The Raid 2 doesn’t need any words; the message comes across loud and clear through kicks, punches, and hammer swings.  It’s a brutal piece of work that teases just enough of the action to get adrenaline junkies salivating, without scaring off those of weaker constitutions by showing blood and gore.  The first trailer was good, but this cut really sells it.  (If you need more convincing, check out Matt’s Sundance review here.)

Starring Iko Uwais, Julie Estelle (Macabre), Alex Abbad (Merantau), Marsha Timothy (The Forbidden Door), Mathias MuchusTio Pakusadewo, and Cecep Arif RahmanThe Raid 2 opens in wide release on March 28th.  Hit the jump to watch the new trailer.

Standby Line Available for Tonight’s L.A. Screening of THE RAID 2

by     Posted 135 days ago

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Last week, we announced that we were giving away tickets to an early L.A. screening of Gareth Evans’ The Raid 2 (a film Matt rather enjoyed).  The film picks up directly after the events of the first pic, as rookie cop Rama (Iko Uwais) must go undercover in the criminal underworld to protect his wife and infant son after his raid of a gangster-ridden high-rise has attracted the attention of some very bad and very powerful people.  If you were unable to get on the list for tonight’s screening in Hollywood, you still might have a chance to see the bloody mayhem.  There will be a line for standby tickets, so if you want to try for those, arrive at the Harmony Gold Theatre (7655 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles 90046) before 6:45 as we’re going to let standby folks in at 6:50, and the screening will start at 7pm followed by a Q&A with Evans.  It’s going to be a fun night.

The Raid 2 opens March 28th.  Hope to see some of you tonight.  If you’ve got any questions leave a comment and I’ll answer them.

THE EXPENDABLES 3 Director Patrick Hughes to Helm THE RAID Remake; Hemsworth Brothers Sought for Lead [Updated]

by     Posted 156 days ago

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Though Screen Gems first acquired remake rights to Gareth Evans’ Indonesian action film The Raid two years ago, after the film made waves with its TIFF debut, the studio now finally looks ready to pull the trigger on the American redo.  Variety reports that Patrick Hughes is in final negotiations to take the helm of The Raid remake from a script by Brad Ingelsby (Out of the Furnace).  The original pic finds an elite Indonesian S.W.A.T. raiding a gangster-ridden building, facing tough opposition as they climb floor-by-floor.  Evans’ film and its upcoming sequel The Raid 2 are both very heavy on martial arts, favoring unique and intense fighting styles over explosions and gunplay, so it’ll be interesting to see how Hughes approaches the action in this remake.

Hughs previously directed the 2010 revenge film Red Hill, but he most recently stepped up to the big leagues by helming the star-filled action sequel The Expendables 3, which opens this August.  Meanwhile, The Raid 2 hits U.S. theaters on March 28th.  You can read Matt’s review of the Evans-helmed follow-up here.  Watch the trailer for the original after the jump. [Update: The Wrap adds that, while no casting has been done on the film, the studio reportedly would like Chris and Liam Hemsworth to star.  Again, nothing official and those two are very busy guys, but that's the early word.]

First Poster for Gareth Evans’ THE RAID 2: BERANDAL Offers up a Mosaic of Violence

by     Posted 157 days ago

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The Raid 2 is a big film both in terms of action and in plot, so perhaps it’s fitting that the new poster for it is packed with images from the movie.  For those unfamiliar with the plot of the sequel, it picks up right where the first film left off and follows Rama (Iko Uwais) as he goes undercover and infiltrates the ranks of a ruthless Jakarta crime syndicate in order to uncover the corruption in his own police force.  There’s also a lot of intrigue amongst the crime factions as the look to consolidate power.  You may notice that my review is quoted at the top of the poster, but I wanted to provide the full quote for clarity: “Like the first movie, the story is serviceable enough to get to the action scenes, and taken solely on the basis of the individual set pieces, The Raid 2 is one of the greatest action movies ever made.”

Hit the jump to check out the poster for The Raid 2: Berandal, and click here for Steve’s lengthy interview with director Gareth Evans.  The film opens on March 28th.

Gareth Evans Talks THE RAID 2, Deleted Scenes, the Budget, the MPAA, John Woo, THE RAID 3, IRON FIST, Future Projects, Hollywood, and More at Sundance

by     Posted 179 days ago

gareth-evans-the-raid-2-interview-sliceOne of my favorite films at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was writer-director Gareth Evans’ The Raid 2.   Picking up right where the first film left off, the sequel follows Rama (Iko Uwais) as he goes undercover and infiltrates the ranks of a ruthless Jakarta crime syndicate in order to protect his family and uncover the corruption in his own police force.   Loaded with some of the best action sequences I’ve ever seen, The Raid 2 is truly a must-see movie.  Thankfully, with a March 28th release date, you won’t have to wait too long to check it out (although it might be trimmed down a bit because of the extreme violence).  The film also stars Julie EstelleAlex AbbadMarsha TimothyArifin Putra, Mathias MuchusTio Pakusadewo, and Cecep Arif Rahman.

The morning after the world premiere, I landed an extended video interview with Evans.  During our wide-ranging conversation (which is spoiler free), he talked about the pressure to raise the bar with the sequel, his writing process, the length of the shoot (132 days), the size of the budget ($4.5 million), deleted scenes, if he’ll release an extended cut on Blu-ray, how the MPAA might react to the film, how close the Sundance cut will be to the final version released in theaters, the status and subject of The Raid 3, his thoughts on the Marvel superhero Iron Fist, if he’s interested in directing it, future projects, his favorite John Woo movie, and so much more.  If you’re a fan of Gareth Evans, I promise you will love this interview.  Hit the jump to watch.

TOP 5: Sundance 2014, THE RAID 2 Trailer, Quentin Tarantino’s THE HATEFUL EIGHT, New Trailer/Promo for Disney’s MALEFICENT, STAR WARS News

by     Posted 182 days ago

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If you’ve yet to check out writer/director Destin Daniel Cretton‘s Short Term 12, what are you waiting for? The film hit shelves on Blu-ray/DVD on January 14th, rendering the “it’s not playing anywhere near me” excuse invalid. I had the opportunity to watch it last weekend and I was blown away. Much has been made of Brie Larson‘s performance and for good reason: it’s terrific. She’s not alone in that regard, though. The turns by Kaitlyn Dever and Keith Stanfield are nothing short of excellent and, in particular, a scene between Stanfield and John Gallagher Jr. in which Stanfield’s character, Marcus, bares his emotional scars via an original rap verse is equal parts heartbreaking and jaw-dropping. Watching Short Term 12 is an emotional roller coaster. You’ll laugh, cry, feel anger, love, hope, and despair. You’ll catch a glimpse of just how lonely a life can be and, at the same time, appreciate how opening ourselves up to the possibility of trust and love is a powerful decision that doesn’t come easily for all of us.

My Blu-ray/DVD recommendation of the week in the books, this week’s Top 5 highlights all of our Sundance 2014 coverage to date, a new trailer for The Raid 2 (including Matt’s Sundance review), Quentin Tarantino‘s The Hateful Eight script leak, a new trailer for Disney’s Maleficent, and a variety of news from the Star Wars: Episode VII camp. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.

Sundance 2014: THE RAID 2 Review

by     Posted 185 days ago

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When Gareth EvansThe Raid premiered at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival, audiences were floored.  It was as if someone had smacked us in the face about 800 times, and showed us that the action being churned out by Hollywood wasn’t half as effective as it could be.  No amount of CGI could ever pack the punch of a perfectly choreographed, perfectly shot, and perfectly edited fight scene.  The original’s barebones plot allowed the movie to mainline the action and get the adrenaline pumping.  It also created high expectations for The Raid 2.  Whereas the first movie was mean and lean, the sequel is epic and explosive with a twisting crime drama serving as the backdrop for some of the best action scenes you’ll ever see.  The violence is brutal; the set pieces are brilliant; and the movie hits so hard that your grandchildren will have bruises.

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