A Promise

It’s not unheard of for fantasy geeks to debate the merits of Diagon Alley versus King’s Landing, Hermione Granger versus Daenerys Targaryen. But French filmmaker Patrice Leconte may be the first to wonder whether Severus Snape or Robb Stark would emerge triumphant in a battle for the heart of Iron Man 3 star Rebecca Hall.

Okay, so that probably wasn’t really Leconte’s aim in making the pre-WWI romance A Promise. But it’s more fun if you imagine it was. Alan Rickman plays a successful factory owner, whose health problems force him to increasingly rely on his assistant (Richard Madden). Meanwhile, said protege is falling for the older man’s wife, played by Hall. Watch the first trailer after the jump.

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cbgb-toilet

This trailer for CBGB, which dramatizes the history of the NYC club that was the birthplace of new wave and punk in America, makes a lot of noise about the fact that the club’s bathroom (above) was famously gross. In fact, after the club closed, parts of that bathroom and other elements of the joint were actually disassembled and worked into the sets used for the movie.

And yet the footage itself looks like a squeaky clean recreation of the house where bands like Blondie, the Talking Heads and the Ramones built their careers.

Kids deserve to know about the roots of punk rock in the US, and there’s nothing really wrong with a bunch of people playing dress-up as the biggest figures of the NYC new wave and punk scene. But it’s pretty funny. Watch the footage below and you’ll see Alan Rickman as Hilly Kristal, who opened the iconic club in ’73, Donal Logue as his compatriot, and Malin Akerman, Rupert Grint, Ashley Greene, Johnny Galecki, Ryan Hurst, Justin Bartha and Bradley Whitford as members of Talking Heads, Blondie, The Ramones, Dead Boys, The Police, Iggy Pop and Patti Smith Group. Read More »

John C Reilly Walk Hard

What Clark Gregg is to The Avengers, John C. Reilly could soon be to the Guardians of the Galaxy. HitFix is reporting the Oscar-nominated actor known for roles in Boogie Nights, Chicago and Step Brothers has been offered the role of Rhomann Dey in James Gunn‘s 2014 cosmic Marvel team-up movie. The role is basically a human go-between for the Guardians (Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana and more to be announced) and S.H.I.E.L.D. back on Earth. Plus, if you know the comics, he might have a little superhero in his future too. Read More »

butler-trailer-header

Left to his own devices Lee Daniels makes films that are eccentric and sometimes just way the hell out there. (The Paperboy) But he has called his newest film, The Butler, “a big compromise” and explained that the film might be “the closest I will come to as a work-for-hire.” Does that mean that, on the relative scale of whackadoo films, The Butler will be far closer to “normal” than anything else he’s made?

Hard to say at this point, but the first trailer suggests that there’s some weird stuff going on here. There’s the parade of cameo players appearing as a string of US Presidents. Among them is John Cusack‘s turn as Richard Nixon, which is… interesting. Then there’s Alex Pettyfer playing an uber-douchebag cotton farm overseer, and the digital effects and makeup that shave a few decades off lead Forest Whitaker in some scenes.

Whitaker plays Cecil Gaines, who served several different President as the White House butler, and the trailer suggests the film traces his entire life story, using it to frame the sweep of the civil rights movement. It’s a good story, but this trailer looks a lot like a parody that might show up on SNL. So we’ll see — maybe The Butler will be just as crazy as the rest of Daniels’ work. Read More »

What we’ve got here is a remake of a classic caper movie from the writers of Fargo starring an Oscar-winner, a box-office bombshell and a naked Professor Snape. The movie is Gambit, directed by Michael Hoffman, with a screenplay by Joel and Ethan Coen starring Colin Firth, Cameron Diaz and Alan Rickman. Firth plays an employee desperate to get back at his boss (Rickman) who enlists the help of a cowgirl (Diaz) to con him into buying a fake painting. Of course, that’s just the tip of the iceberg and performances by Stanley Tucci, Cloris Leachman and Tom Courtenay all factor in. A trailer has been floating around for about a week but is just coming to our attention now. Check it out below. Read More »

Just because Joel and Ethan Coen wrote a movie doesn’t mean it will turn out well (see Sam Raimi’s early effort Crimewave) but I’ve still had hope for Gambit. That’s in part because the original film is a great bit of fun; it stars Michael Caine as an art thief who recruits a nightclub girl (Shirley MacLaine) to assist in a very specific heist. The original features some wonderful role reversals and simply well-executed scenes, and I hoped that with a script from the Coens the remake might follow suit.

The remake stars Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz in altered versions of the original lead roles, with Alan Rickman as the guy they’re trying to rip off. UK show Lorraine premiered the trailer for Gambit, and we’ve got an embed below that shows most of the footage. Not as good as a legit version of the full trailer, but it’ll do as a start — at least when it comes to making me worried that the film won’t be all that great. Read More »

A movie I’m really curious to see, whenever the chance arises, is Gambit. Directed by Michael Hoffman, the movie is a remake of a 1966 romantic caper movie that originally starred Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine. This version was scripted some time ago by Joel and Ethan Coen, and finally shot with Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz in the lead roles, supported by Alan Rickman, Stanley Tucci, Tom Courtenay and Cloris Leachman.

The original version of the story features Caine as a slick professional thief who recruits MacLaine to help him accomplish a major theft. This version is a bit different, as it follows this path: “An art curator decides to seek revenge on his abusive boss by conning him into buying a fake Monet, but his plan requires the help of an eccentric and unpredictable Texas rodeo queen.” With the Coens scripting I’m hoping that some of the weird comic charm of the original is intact, or altered in an interesting fashion.

We don’t know much about how the project came out, but two posters have come online as part of the film’s international promotion, and there is also a very brief look at footage. It’s all below. Read More »

It seems like biopics and other similar true life stories are exploding in development right now, and we’ve got casting for three big ones. First up, the Jimi Hendrix film All is By My Side has just added a young Keith Richards. British actor Ashley Charles will play the Rolling Stones songwriter and guitarist.

John Ridley is directing the film now, with Andre Benjamin as Hendrix, and Hayley Atwell as Linda Keith, who during the story’s time frame was dating Richards. She ‘discovered’ Hendrix and tried to get the Stones management to work with him, to no avail. Keith Richards likely won’t play a big part in the film, which chronicles the days before Hendrix made it big.

Fun fact checking: let’s see how people refer to Richards in this film. In ’63 the Stones manager started listing the guitarist as Keith Richard, and it wasn’t until the ’70s that he once again became Richards.  [THR]

After the break, Donal Logue plays an important figure in the New York music scene, and Colin Farrell is in talks for the Mary Poppins film Saving Mr. Banks. Read More »

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