The weirdest double-feature at Sundance this year was the pair of films from Sebastián Silva and Michael Cera. While in a holding pattern waiting to shoot one film, Magic Magic (see a trailer for that movie here) they improvised a second film, Crystal Fairy & The Magical Cactus. IFC picked up Crystal Fairy during the fest, and while we don’t yet have a trailer, we can show you the first poster for the film now.
While Cera is the “star” of both films, in truth each movie really comes to life thanks to the performance of an actress antagonized by Cera. Here, that’s Gaby Hoffmann, whose vibrant performance may be the most bracingly fearless turn you’ll see this year. It’s quite a thing to see.
Cera, Hoffman, and Juan Andrés Silva, José Miguel Silva, and Agustín Silva play an unlikely group of kids in search of the hallucinogenic San Pedro cactus. As you’ll see in the poster image, they definitely find one, and it’s effect of ingesting the distilled essence of the cactus that pushes things into the realms of the weird and deeply confessional. Check out the poster below. Read More »
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Briefly: James Marsh, director of Man on Wire and Project Nim, is putting together Theory of Everything, a dramatized biography of physicist Stephen Hawking. To play the scientist, Marsh is reportedly looking to Eddie Redmayne, of Les Miserables, and My Week With Marilyn.
If the deal happens, Marsh will still need an actress to play Hawking’s wife; the film focuses on their relationship. That said, taking into account Redmayne’s age, the time period for the film probably begins in the mid-’60s, when Hawking married Jane Wilde, to whom he was married until 1991. Ideally, the film will shoot this fall. Anthony McCarten scripted. [Deadline]
Some of the Cloud Atlas team is coming back together for another literary adaptation. Tom Hanks and Tom Tykwer are teaming up to adapt A Hologram for the King by Dave Eggers. Hanks and his company Playtone will produce, and Hanks will star, while Tykwer will produce and direct. (Presumably he could do the film’s music, as well.)
The book, which the New York Times called “a globalized Death of a Salesman,” follows a struggling American businessman who attempts to mount a plan for personal and financial salvation in a Saudi Arabian city. Read More »
Briefly: The video game incarnation of Lara Croft, Tomb Raider, was rebooted not long ago, and the film version is following suit. Paramount’s hold on the franchise rights lapsed after the middling performance of the second film starring Angelina Jolie, and GK Films nabbed the option to make a new Tomb Raider film. The company took the package to MGM, which has been working on he character’s revival.
Now Marti Noxon, writer/showrunner for Buffy the Vampire Slayer and screenwriter for the Fright Night remake, has been hired to script. No word on the story or general approach at this moment, besides the safe and obvious assumption that Croft and her archaeological adventures will be the focus. [Variety]
When Marvel Studios announced its “phase two,” most of the company’s “phase one” films were already in theaters. There was a proven track record, so audiences had a good idea of what the studio was doing with its characters.
Game publisher Ubisoft has been taking control of game-to-film adaptations featuring its many popular properties, with a “phase one” that includes Assassin’s Creed produced by and starring Michael Fassbender, Splinter Cell with Tom Hardy, and Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon developed by Michael Bay. It’s a great slate, and now the company is announcing the development of “phase two,” with films based on the Far Cry, Watch Dogs, and Rabbids games.
Trouble is, none of those phase one films actually exist just yet. Ubisoft clearly has big plans, and is relishing the control over its properties. Six films in development is a lot. Can the company deliver, or is the “active overseer” role perfect to make sure that the films happen, but in a way that will be true to the games? Read More »
There are quite a few images of sets for Transformers 4 floating around this week, but the best has to be the shot above.
That big piece of set dressing, caught in the wild by @jfall, has an obvious message to anyone who saw the third Transformers film. The climax of that movie destroyed much of downtown Chicago, and the sentiment is pretty clear when it comes to understanding the aftermath of that fight. Seems like the America of this fourth film might not be so excited to have giant robots running around. Presumably there’ll eventually be something to hear by calling that phone number.
After the break, see images of Mark Wahlberg on set, as well as some more pics of general shooting locations. In addition, get a look at the latest marketing tie-in/character reveal, thanks to a new vehicle image drop. Read More »
It’s almost a crime that most people only know the music of Big Star through the theme song for That ’70s Show. Many viewers probably never realized the song is a re-recording of ‘In the Street‘ from Big Star’s first album ‘#1 Record.’ (The show initially used a cover of the song by Todd Griffin, but for seven of the eight seasons opened with a cover by Cheap Trick.)
That first album by Big Star is, in a word, glorious. Songwriters Alex Chilton and Chris Bell, who as teens saw the Beatles perform in Memphis, wrote the album in a back and forth fashion that honed the twelve tracks into brilliant pop gems. The record was never distributed well, and so despite widespread acclaim, it became one of those artifacts that music enthusiasts revere and the public at large missed. The band (without Bell) made two more albums, both of which are also excellent, but they never really made it.
Some of those enthusiasts are now in the position to make films, and so we have the doc Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me. The film charts the formation of the band, and its fate as a near-obscurity, with a redeptive final chapter that has taken almost 20 years to play out as more and more people finally hear the record that everyone should have had in 1972. Read More »
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This new trailer for Keanu Reeves‘ directorial debut Man of Tai Chi is quite an improvement over the last look we had at the movie. This is a fight film, pure and simple, but this trailer suggests a lot more story and a more complicated moral path for the main character. The movie looks more polished, and the fights look like they’re hard-hitting but simply-executed setpieces.
Tiger Hu Chen (Kung Fu Hero) plays a martial artist who is targeted by Reeves to take part in a fight competition, but there seems to be more to it than just that. The film also features Karen Mok (Shaolin Soccer) and Iko Uwais (The Raid), with fight choreography by Yuen Wo-Ping.
Check out the new trailer below. Read More »