BEN-HUR Remake Set for February 26, 2016 Release; THE BIBLE Producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey Board Project

by     Posted 98 days ago

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MGM and Paramount Pictures’ Ben-Hur remake now has a release date and a pair of interesting producers.  Wanted and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter director Timur Bekmambetov is onboard to helm the epic, and MGM and Paramount have now slated the film for release on February 26, 2016.  Moreover, The Bible and Son of God producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey have come aboard the project as producers, which could potentially mean the redo might bridge the gap between Hollywood tentpole and the recent flurry of successful faith-based features.  Based on Lew Wallace’s novel of the same name, Bekmambetov’s film focuses on the nature of faith as it follows a falsely accused nobleman who sets out to take vengeance on the best friend who betrayed him.

Hit the jump for more on this curious project.

Timur Bekmambetov Confirmed for BEN-HUR Reboot

by     Posted 315 days ago

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About a month ago we reported that Timur Bekmambetov (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) was in talks to direct the Ben-Hur remake for MGM.  We now have unofficial confirmation that Bekmambetov will indeed take the reins of the new adaptation of the 1880 Lew Wallace novel, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ.  MGM was wise to pick up Keith Clarke’s spec script of the Biblical epic, with Darren Aronofsky’s Noah prepping to launch for Paramount and New Regency, and Ridley Scott’s Exodus set to open in December 2014 for 20th Century Fox; that studio also will release a theatrical cut of The Bible miniseries coming under the title of Son of God.  Hit the jump for more.

WANTED Director Timur Bekmambetov in Talks to Helm BEN-HUR Remake

by     Posted 347 days ago

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MGM continues to move forward on its new adaptation of the 1880 Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of The Christ, and it appears that the studio has a rather visually-inclined director in mind to tackle the redo.  Deadline reports that Wanted and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter director Timur Bekmambetov is in talks to direct the Biblical epic, which was of course previously realized onscreen by director William Wyler in the Charlton Heston-fronted 1959 classic Ben-Hur.  MGM’s new adaptation is said to be more faithful to the book and diverges heavily from the Heston film, as it will also tell the parallel tale of Jesus Christ in addition to the Ben-Hur story.  Hit the jump for more.

Ben Stiller Circling Thomas Edison Film THE CURRENT WAR as Directorial Vehicle; The Weinstein Company to Produce

by     Posted 1 year, 2 days ago

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The Thomas Edison film The Current War is heating up.  The Michael Mitnick script chronicles the true-life public battle fought between Edison and George Westinghouse for the domination of the early power industry, and it landed on the Black List in 2011.  Last year Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter helmer Timur Bekmambetov signed on to direct, but further movement on the project failed to materialize.  Now The Weinstein Company has stepped in to finance and produce the period pic, and while Bekmambetov is no longer attached to direct, a number of other helmers are circling the project—including Ben Stiller.  Hit the jump for more.

Timur Bekmambetov Brings WIZARD OF OZ to SyFy as Fantasy-Action Miniseries WARRIORS OF OZ

by     Posted 1 year, 10 days ago

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Audiences flocked to see Oz the Great and Powerful in theaters earlier this year and now genre producer Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted) wants to bring the property to the small screen.  Finding a home at Syfy, Bekmambetov’s mini-series Warriors of Oz is based on his original idea in which “a warrior from present day Earth is transported to a post-apocalyptic future Oz where he must team up with three other warriors: Heartless, Brainless, and Coward, in order to defeat the evil Wizard who has enslaved the land.”  Deadline also reports that Bekmambetov will executive produce the mini-series and may direct; the search is on for a writer.  Fans of L. Frank Baum’s source material may remember the mini-series Tin Man that debuted in 2007, but Bekmambetov will certainly bring his own unique interpretation to the project.

Timur Bekmambetov to Direct HEATSEEKERS; Michael Bay Will Produce

by     Posted 1 year, 198 days ago

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Quite the action team-up is taking place for the upcoming film Heatseekers.  A couple of years ago, we reported that Michael Bay and his Platinum Dunes studio had acquired a spec script called Heatseekers for Paramount Pictures.  The story centered on aerial “pirates” and was likened to Fast & Furious and Point Break.  Now word comes that that Wanted and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter helmer Timur Bekmambetov has come aboard the action project to direct, with Bay maintaining his producer role.  Hit the jump for more details.

Vin Diesel in Talks to Lead THE LAST WITCH HUNTER

by     Posted 1 year, 327 days ago

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Hot on the heels of the first trailer for the significantly delayed genre pic Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, a witch hunting film of a different sort may have found its lead.  The Wrap reports that Vin Diesel is in talks to star in The Crazies director Breck Eisner’s The Last Witch Hunter.  Diesel would play one of the last remaining witch hunters who is tasked with “discouraging a group of witches and warlocks from reproducing.”  Vin Diesel: Cock Blocker was previously set up as a directing vehicle for Wanted’s Timur Bekmambetov, but he’s now only onboard in a producer role.  The script for the Lionsgate/Summit film was written by Cory Goodman (Priest).

Diesel is currently in London filming the Justin Lin-helmed sequel Fast & Furious 6, and he recently wrapped the third installment in his Chronicles of Riddick series, Riddick.  The actor is also attached to star in the Iron Giant-esque possible franchise-starter The Machine, in which he’ll play a government-created machine that must protect the family who’s harboring him.

Weekend Box Office – BRAVE the Easy Winner with $66.7 Million; ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER Third with $16.5 Million

by     Posted 2 years, 37 days ago

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This weekend’s box office turned out to be pretty predictable. Brave, the thirteenth feature from fan-favorite Pixar studios, came out on top with an estimated $66.7 million from 4,127 locations. Easy to see that one coming. More of a question mark was Fox’s R-rated counter-programmer Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Many expected the film to crash in epic fashion; and while $16.5 million from 3,106 locations is not great, it is better than Rock of Ages and That’s My Boy managed last weekend so… yay?

Title Weekend Total
1 Brave $66,700,000 $66.7
2 Madagascar 3 $20,200,000 $157.5
3 Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter $16,500,000 $16.5
4 Prometheus $10,000,000 $108.5
5 Snow White & the Huntsman $8,012,000 $137
6 Rock of Ages $8,000,000 $28.7
7 That’s My Boy $7,900,000 $28.1
8 The Avengers $7,040,000 $598.2
9 Men in Black 3 $5,600,000 $163.3
10 Seeking a Friend for the End of the World $3,836,000 $3.8

TOP 5: THE MASTER Trailer, BRAVE, Cinemath, SEEKING A FRIEND FOR THE END OF THE WORLD, ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER

by     Posted 2 years, 38 days ago

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Earlier this week I literally dreamed about The Dark Knight Rises. Not that I was in the movie. Not that I was Batman. Just that I was in the theater watching it for the first time. And I woke up with a sense of joy that followed me around for hours. Even now I can’t decide exactly what this says about me or whether it’s a good or bad thing that I’m so excited for a single moviegoing experience. Part of me is a little disappointed in my subconscious for dreaming on such a micro level. Another part is encouraged that it finds such joy in the “little things”. Regardless, those precious two hours and forty-five minutes or so on midnight of July 20th can’t get here soon enough.

All personal issues aside, this week’s iteration of the Top 5 includes the new trailer for Paul Thomas Anderson‘s The Master, Brave interviews with John Lasseter, director Mark Andrews and more, Brendan’s latest Cinemath feature, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World interviews with Steve Carell, Keira Knightley and more, and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter interviews with Tim Burton and co. The search for a brief recap and link to each concludes after the jump.

Friday Box Office – BRAVE Hits Target with $24.5 Million; ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER More of a Miss with $6.3 Million

by     Posted 2 years, 38 days ago

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Thirteen is looking like a lucky number for Pixar. Brave, the studio’s thirteenth release, will keep their perfect streak of number one debuts very much intact. From a Pixar-record of 4,164 locations (67% in 3D) Brave earned an estimated $24.5 million on Friday. That puts the PG-rated feature on track for an opening weekend of almost $70 million – slightly more than Pixar’s last movie, Cars 2, realized on this weekend in 2011. Projections are not quite as sanguine for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Though Fox’s R-rated genre-bender should avoid becoming a Jonah Hex-sized embarrassment, it also looks unlikely that director Timur Bekmambetov’s latest will taste success. From 3,106 locations, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter earned an estimated $6.3 million on Friday. Projections put the film just under $15 million for the weekend, though I wouldn’t be surprised to see that figure fall further. We’ll have full details tomorrow.

Title Friday Total
1 Brave $24,518,000 $24.5
2 Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter $6,300,000 $6.3
3 Madagascar 3 $6,115,000 $143.4
4 Prometheus $2,900,000 $101.4
5 Rock of Ages $2,515,000 $23.2

Timur Bekmambetov and Seth Grahame-Smith Talk ABRAHAM LINCOLN VAMPIRE HUNTER, Favorite Movies, WANTED 2, and More

by     Posted 2 years, 40 days ago

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Opening this weekend is director Timur Bekmambetov‘s (WantedAbraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.  Based on the book of the same name from Pride and Prejudice and Zombies author Seth Grahame-Smith and produced by Tim Burton, the film imagines that Lincoln’s mother and grandfather were killed by a vampire and that the president’s resolve to end slavery was due in part to the “fact” that vampires were involved with the slave trade.  Playing Lincoln is newcomer Benjamin Walker and he stars alongside Rufus SewellAnthony MackieDominic Cooper, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. For more on the film, here’s all our previous coverageand three clips with twenty minutes of behind-the-scenes footage.

A few days ago I got to speak with Timur Bekmambetov and Seth Grahame-Smith in New York City.  We talked about making Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, what historical events from Lincoln’s life they felt needed to be included, what was cut due to budgetary reasons, their favorite movies, and Bekmambetov gave a Wanted 2 update.  Hit the jump to watch.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER Review

by     Posted 2 years, 40 days ago

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Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter attempts to walk the line between solemn grit and bombastic action.  The film stumbles around the line, falls off of it, gropes in the dark to find the line again, give a big goofy smile at no one in particular, regains a wobbly balance before taking a proud stride forward only to constantly repeat this bizarre range of motions.  The film is an exercise in pushing the limits of going big while keeping a straight face.  In its action scenes, there’s not a shred of doubt that director Timur Bekmambetov is trying to find laughs in lunacy to make up for the dearth of humor in the “serious” scenes.  But what appears to be an attempt at balance simply comes off as measured schizophrenia, and what should be a fun twist on half-remembered American history instead becomes a dark twist on historiography.

3 Clips and 20 Minutes of Behind-the-Scenes Footage from ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER

by     Posted 2 years, 42 days ago

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We’ve been provided with three clips and 20 minutes of behind-the-scenes footage from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.  Based on the Seth Grahame-Smith novel of the same name, the film delves into the “secret” past of our nation’s 16th president and documents his quest to cut as many vampires in half as possible after they murder his mother.  Wanted helmer Timur Bekmambetov directs with producer Tim Burton onboard to make sure things stay strange, which is crucial when your film’s title is Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.

Hit the jump to watch the clips.  Be sure to check out Steve’s set visit coverage including 30 things to know plus a video blog, and interviews with Bekmambetov, Benjamin Walker, and Dominic Cooper.  Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter opens in 3D on June 22nd.

Timur Bekmambetov Talks WANTED 2; Will Continue the Story of James McAvoy’s Character but with a “Great Twist”

by     Posted 2 years, 43 days ago

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For anyone who was clamoring for Wanted 2, it’s been a disappointing past four years.  After listening to Mark Millar talk out of his ass about how far the sequel is coming along, Angelina Jolie dropped out, but then there was a glimmer of progress when original writers Derek Haas and Michael Brandt signed on last fall.  Since then, word has been quiet, but director Timur Bekmambetov provided an update on the project this past weekend at the press junket for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.

Hit the jump for more.

TOP 5: TOTAL RECALL Set Visit, BREAKING BAD, PROMETHEUS, RESIDENT EVIL: RETRIBUTION Trailer, ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER Set Visit

by     Posted 2 years, 45 days ago

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Apologies for the lack of a Top 5 last weekend. I was so busy prepping to get married, and eventually getting married, that I had to cash in a “sick day” on the best weekend job a person could ask for. The good news is that I have no intention on making this a routine (either the “sick day” or the getting married) so we should be good to go on the regular Top 5 installments for the foreseeable future. The bad news is that I doubt the substantial pile of wedding cards filled with cash/gift cards will catch on as a routine either. You win some you lose some, I guess.

In this week’s return edition you can find a recap of our Total Recall set visit coverage, a new trailer for Breaking Bad Season 5 alongside a fan-made recap of Seasons 1-4, continuing coverage of Prometheus such as Blu-ray details, a sequel recap and more, the first full trailer for Resident Evil: Retribution, and our Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter set visit. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each.

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