The Interview pulled

Tuesday, the hackers that exposed Sony’s internal workings went a step further and issued a big threat, invoking 9/11 in a statement that promised action against theaters showing The Interview. But the Department of Homeland Security — a group that really doesn’t mess around when it comes to this sort of thing — said there was no credible information to indicate an actual threat. Sony was fairly magnanimous about the situation, saying it would allow theaters to make the decision to show the film or not, even if bookings had already been locked in.

Last night Carmike Cinemas and Bow Tie Cinemas pulled the film, and today in a precedent-setting move, the five major theater chains in the US and Canada all dropped The Interview.

Update: Sony is now considering a VOD release of the film; more info below.

Update #2: Sony has canceled the December theatrical release of The Interview. Full statement below.

Update #3: Sony has now confirmed they have “no further release plans” for the film while American Intelligence has officially linked North Korea to the Sony hack. Details below.

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Pyongyang movie canceled

One ripple from the decisions being made about Sony’s film The Interview is already being felt at another company. New Regency had been setting up a darkly comic film called Pyongyang to shoot in early 2015. The film, to be directed by Gore Verbinski with Steve Carell starring, was written to take place in the North Korean capital city after which the movie is named. Now, however, the picture has been scrapped. Read More »

superman-man-of-steel-poster-3-header

So many Hollywood films are so fraught with destruction, the complaints directed at Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel were definitely a surprise. At the end of the film, Superman and Zod battle all across the city of Metropolis, creating apocalyptic chaos. It’s basically the same ending of every blockbuster film, with one difference: Superman is usually infallible. He doesn’t do anything that would endanger the public, like throwing his enemy through a skyscraper. Then again, he doesn’t kill people either, and he did that in the movie, too.

The argument was that, in the movie, Superman has only been “Superman” for a few days. He hadn’t fully created his moral code yet, or even explored the depths of his abilities. Then again, he still creates havoc that may or may not have killed thousands of people, which is very un-like the character.

This was, and has continued to be, a big debate since the film’s release. Many expected Snyder’s follow-up, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, to deal with this. We now know not only is that true, we know specifically how Batman v Superman will deal with the Man of Steel destruction complaints.

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the Interview threats

Perpetrators of the Sony hack got a lot more serious today when they issued a threat that went far beyond stealing internal emails and documents.  “Remember the 11th of September 2001,” says the threat. “We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. (If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.) Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment.” In this case, “the places” refers to theaters showing The Interview, the film from writer/directors Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg in which Rogen and James Franco play a couple of media types who are recruited to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

While no link between North Korea’s government and the hackers (who ironically call themselves “Guardians of Peace”) has been proven, the threat stirred up fears of action that goes beyond the digital realm. And even as Franco and Rogen canceled promo appearances meant to pitch The Interview to various audiences, the Department of Homeland Security says there’s no credible info to indicate an actual threat.

Update: Sony has told theaters there won’t be a problem if they decide to drop The Interview, despite any prior bookings.

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spider-man reboot again

The Sony hack has taught us many things. On the movie side, it has taught us that Sony really does care about Spider-Man. They might not know what to do with him but there’s no doubt everyone is looking at every possible option for the character. You’ve probably already read a bit about the Sony talks with Marvel to get the character to appear in Captain America: Civil War, or of a possible animated movie by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, or of Marvel’s desire to recast Andrew Garfield. Now a few more details have leaked.

Turns out, the discussions with Marvel went a little deeper than we initially thought, with many different angles examined about how that marriage could work. Plus, there was a major internal discussion about how they could possibly reboot the franchise for a third time, avoiding the origin story and maybe even adapting one of the most popular Marvel Comics Spider-Man stories of all time.

Below, read the latest on plans to possibly reboot Spider-Man again. Read More »

spiderman recast

The drama over the film future of Spider-Man seemingly never ends. After The Amazing Spider-Man 2 failed to deliver, Sony announced an elaborate plan to spread the franchise out into some very intriguing spin-off films like Sinister Six and Venom. Then rumors began bubbling they’d been in touch with Marvel Studios to try and figure out some kind of mutually beneficial deal. At one point, there was even a discussion of Spider-Man maybe appearing in 2016′s Captain America: Civil War. Those talks broke down, and at the moment, things are still in flux.

The latest update is a few of the details in those now legendary Marvel and Sony talks. Apparently, if a deal was worked out, Marvel’s plan was  to completely distance their version of Spider-Man from everything Sony had done with the character. That means recasting Andrew Garfield. Read More »

ewan-mcgregor-1

Ladies and gentleman, may we present to you the first confirmed photo of Jesus. He’s played by Ewan McGregor and you can see him in Park City, Utah next month.

One of the standout films on the recent list of narrative Premieres at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival was Last Days in the Desert, Rodrigo Garcia‘s film that dramatizes Jesus’s 40 days spent fasting in the desert. McGregor stars not only as Jesus, but as the devil as well, who confronts and tempts the son of God during his epic struggle.

Now, the first image from the film has been revealed. That’s not it above. The image isn’t in any way offensive but it definitely puts a bigger spotlight on this sure to be controversial film. Check out the Ewan McGregor Jesus image below. Read More »

Jonathan Frakes Star Trek

The departure of Roberto Orci from the bridge of Star Trek 3 was both a blessing and a curse. It was a curse because the movie had its phasers locked on a 2016 release date, but a blessing in that a new director might drum up some excitement after the lackluster second installment. Instantly the discussion began about who should direct the film.

Articles and tweets packed with bad Star Trek puns filled the Internet and one thing became clear, at least for fans of the series. They wanted Jonathan Frakes, aka Commander William T. Riker himself, to direct the film. Besides starring in Star Trek The Next Generation and multiple Trek movies, Frakes actually directed several episodes of the show as well as Star Trek: First Contact and Star Trek: Insurrection, two mostly-well-received entries into the Trek canon. He seems like a good man for the job.

As it turns out, he agrees and he’s aggressively going after the gig. Read more of the Jonathan Frakes Star Trek 3 news below. Read More »

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