In addition to a few first look images that Warner Bros. recently released in anticipation of its upcoming 2014 slate of films, the studio has also unveiled an extensive list of official synopses, providing a closer look at some highly anticipated features. Briefly:
- Transcendence – The feature directorial debut of Christopher Nolan’s longtime cinematographer Wally Pfister stars Johnny Depp, Paul Bettany, and Rebecca Hall and opens April 18th.
- Godzilla – The action redo stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, and Bryan Cranston and opens on May 16th.
- Blended – The African safari-set romantic comedy stars Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore and opens on May 23rd.
- Jersey Boys – Director Clint Eastwood’s musical adaptation stars Christopher Walken and opens on June 20th.
- Tammy – The Melissa McCarthy/Susan Sarandon comedy opens on July 2nd.
- This Is Where I Leave You – Director Shawn Levy’s star-studded dramatic comedy opens September 12th.
- The Hobbit: There and Back Again – The final chapter in Peter Jackson’s trilogy opens December 17th.
Hit the jump to read the full synopses for the aforementioned films and a few more.
Check out the latest update to the release date schedule:
- Legendary Pictures’ Untitled Michael Mann Project will be released by Universal Pictures on Friday, January 16, 2015.
- Universal Pictures will release The Boy Next Door on Friday, January 23, 2015.
- Legendary Pictures’ Seventh Son will be released in 3D by Universal Pictures on Friday, February 6, 2015.
- Legendary Pictures’ Warcraft, released in 3D by Universal Pictures, will move from December 18, 2015 (which is currently occupied by a little film called Star Wars: Episode VII), to March 11, 2016.
- Universal Pictures will release The Mummy on Friday, April 22, 2016.
- Also, Warner Bros.’ This Is Where I Leave You will now open September 12, 2014.
Hit the jump for more on each picture.
One of my favorite films at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival is Jason Bateman‘s directorial debut Bad Words. Andrew Dodge’s awesome script centers on a high-school drop-out (Bateman) who uses a loophole to compete in an 8th grade spelling bee, enraging teachers and parents alike, but befriending an awkward young contestant along the way. And while the film could easily be a family friendly, PG movie that plays it safe, I’m happy to report Bateman has crafted a wholly R-rated movie that’s loaded with inappropriate dialogue and hysterical situations. It also explains why Focus Features quickly snapped it up during an all night bidding war following the world premiere. Bad Words also stars Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Ben Falcone, Philip Baker Hall and Rohan Chandz.
The day after the premiere I got to sit down with Bateman for an extended video interview. He talked about the warm reception for the film, landing distribution, marketing plans, the soundtrack (which is fantastic), working with child actor Rohan Chand, deleted scenes, and more. In addition, Bateman talked about the Horrible Bosses sequel, the audience perception of The Change-Up, and Shawn Levy‘s This Is Where I Leave You. Hit the jump to watch.
Check out the latest casting announcements below:
Hit the jump for more on each project.
Though his AMC series The Killing was just resurrected for a third season, star Joel Kinnaman isn’t leaving features behind anytime soon. The actor most recently wrapped the starring role in the RoboCop reboot, and now Heat Vision reports that Kinnaman is in negotiations to join Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace in the thriller Child 44. The film is based on the book of the same name by Tom Rob Smith and takes place in the 1950s, where it centers on a security officer in the Soviet Union who finds himself demoted and exiled while investigating a string of murders.
Kinnaman is in talks to play Hardy’s “ambitious and murderous nemesis.” Should the deal go through, Kinnaman would be reuniting with his Snabba Cash director Daniel Espinosa on the project. Espinosa is coming off the success of last year’s Safe House, and Child 44 boasts Ridley Scott and Michael Costigan as producers. Filming is hoping to get underway this summer. Hit the jump for casting news concerning Rose Byrne joining Tina Fey/Jason Bateman and Seth Rogen/Zac Efron in a couple of upcoming projects.
We’ve got a couple of casting stories to share this afternoon. Briefly:
- James Gandolfini is in talks to join Tom Hardy in the crime drama Animal Rescue.
- Girls standout Adam Driver is in negotiations to join Tina Fey and Jason Bateman in the comedy/drama This Is Where I Leave You.
- Law & Order star S. Epatha Merkerson is looking to play Marvin Gaye’s mother in the biopic Sexual Healing.
Hit the jump for more details.
Check out the latest casting announcements below:
- Andrea Riseborough (Happy-Go-Lucky) has joined the increasingly impressive cast of Alejandro González Iñárritu’s dark comedy Birdman, which already stars Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis, Naomi Watts and Edward Norton.
- Bella Heathcote (Dark Shadows) will join Hugh Grant and Marisa Tomei in an untitled comedy by writer/director Marc Lawrence (Did You Hear About the Morgans?).
- Corey Stoll (The Bourne Legacy) boards This Is Where I Leave You, the Shawn Levy-directed adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel that stars Tina Fey and Jason Bateman.
Hit the jump for more on each casting announcement.
Check out the latest casting news from the following movies:
Hit the jump for more.
The feature film adaptation of Jonathan Tropper’s novel This is Where I Leave You is picking up some steam. The project was initially gearing up to begin production last spring under director Adam Shankman with an ensemble cast that included Jason Bateman, Zac Efron, Goldie Hawn, Leslie Mann, Malin Akerman, and Jason Sudeikis, but Shankman subsequently exited the project and casting deals were never completed, so movement stalled. Shawn Levy came onboard to direct last fall, and now Bateman is back on the project as the search to fill out the rest of the cast begins in anticipation of a May or June production start date.
The book tells the story of a dysfunctional family that is forced to reunite when their father requests they sit Shivah for seven days following his death, and the feature film adaptation has attracted a great deal of talent, with Harry Potter director David Yates previously flirting with the project. Hit the jump to find out which actresses are currently testing for roles opposite Bateman.
Step Up Revolution, the fourth installment of the wildly popular Step Up dance franchise, is now available on 3D Blu-ray and DVD. With themes of love, injustice, hope and family, this time the story is set in Miami and features a cast that stages cutting-edge flash mobs meant to really the locals to protest against planned commercial development that would destroy their homes and businesses. The film stars Ryan Guzman, Kathryn McCormick, Misha Gabriel, Stephen “tWitch” Boss and Peter Gallagher.
During this recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, Adam Shankman – who produces the Step Up films with his sister, Jennifer Gibgot – talked about the over two hours of exclusive and behind-the-scenes bonus features, why the Step Up films have been so successful, how it’s more difficult to teach actors to dance than it is to teach dancers to act, the challenge of finding directors for each film who have their own passion and enthusiasm for the art of dance, and that it’s likely there will continue to be more films in the franchise. He also talked about what fans can expect from the Glee Christmas episode he directed (in which he says Kurt and Blaine will sing together and share a lovely moment), what led him to part ways with This is Where I Leave You which he was scheduled to direct, that he hasn’t locked down his next project yet, and why he’s totally addicted to directing. Check out what he had to say after the jump.
We have word that Shawn Levy (Real Steel) is stepping in to direct the ensemble comedy, This Is Where I Leave You as a replacement for Adam Shankman (Rock of Ages). Shankman was attached to the Warner Bros. film as recently as this past summer, but he departed the picture along with star Jason Bateman. The studio then put the picture in limbo, but have recently entered final negotiations with Levy to direct. The original cast also featured Jason Sudeikis, Malin Akerman, Zac Efron and Leslie Mann, but it’s not yet clear whether their schedules can accommodate the shoot. Hit the jump for more.
In the feature film adaptation of the smash hit Broadway musical Rock of Ages, small town girl Sherrie (Julianne Hough) and city boy Drew (Diego Boneta) meet on the Sunset Strip in 1987, in pursuit of their Hollywood dreams. With the hits of Def Leppard, Foreigner, Journey, Poison, REO Speedwagon, Twisted Sister and so many more, to help tell the story, their rock ‘n’ roll romance hits its fair share of speed bumps on the road to fame.
At the film’s press day, director Adam Shankman talked about why he wanted Tom Cruise to play rock god Stacee Jaxx in the film, Cruise’s initial reaction when he was approached with the idea, why he cut out the lap dance scene with Cruise and Julianne Hough, how Mary J. Blige came to be in the film (after the initial suggestion of Whitney Houston), the process of narrowing the songs down, and what the baboon was like to work with. He also talked about how Step Up: Revolution will be taking things to a whole new level, and that his next film will be This is Where I Leave You, based on the novel of the same name. Check out what he had to say after the jump:
Director Adam Shankman large-scale movie musical Rock of Ages hits theaters next month, but he’s already lining up an impressive cast for his next project. Deadline reports that Jason Bateman, Zac Efron, Goldie Hawn, and Leslie Mann are in talks to star in Shankman’s adaptation of the Jonathan Tropper novel This Is Where I Leave You. The book tells the story of a dysfunctional family that is forced to reunite when their father requests they sit Shivah for seven days following his death. Harry Potter director David Yates was previously considering the Warner Bros. project as his post-Potter film, so this one’s a bit of a hot property for the studio. [Update: Malin Akerman and Jason Sudeikis are also in talks to join.] Hit the jump for more, including a synopsis of the book.
While he’s currently busy putting the finishing touches on the 80s musical Rock of Ages, director Adam Shankman looks to have lined up his next project. Variety reports that Shankman is in early negotiations to produce and direct an adaptation of Jonathan Tropper’s novel This Is Where I Leave You. The book tells the story of a dysfunctional family that is forced to reunite when their father requests they sit Shivah for seven days following his death. The drama has been in development with Warner Bros. for quite a while, and was one of the films David Yates was considering following the conclusion of the Harry Potter series.
Shankman hasn’t taken on dramatic-skewing material since 2002’s A Walk to Remember, but he has plenty of experience with family-centered stories. I enjoyed the hell out of Hairspray, but it’ll be interesting to see if he can scale things back for a more intimate drama without veering into sappy territory. He recently signed on to direct a new iteration of The Nutcracker, but WB is hoping to start production on This is Where I Leave You late this summer so The Nutcracker may be a ways off. Hit the jump to read a synopsis of Tropper’s novel.
The most successful franchise in film history comes to an end with tonight’s midnight opening of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2. Director David Yates has been at the helm of the last three (or four, if you count Deathly Hallows as two films) Harry Potter entries, and he’s done a remarkable job bringing the series to a close. Now that the director is out of Potter books to adapt, everyone wants to know what he’ll be doing next. Given his great success with the franchise, he’s pretty much got his pick of the litter.
When Steve recently sat down with Yates, the director stated his intention to make a really small film next year before diving back into big-budget studio fare. What might that big-budget studio fare be? Well reports have surfaced suggesting he’s eyeing an adaptation of Stephen King’s The Stand as well as an Al Capone origin story called Cicero to possibly star Tom Hardy, in addition to a number of other projects on the director’s radar. Hit the jump for the details.