Gina Rodriguez in Jane the Virgin

Alex Garland‘s directorial debut Ex Machina has proven to be one of the very best films of 2015, thanks in no small part to the exceptional actors at its core: future Star Wars stars Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson, and the suddenly ubiquitous Alicia Vikander. Now his follow-up feature Annihilation, set up at Paramount, is collecting a similarly promising cast.

Natalie Portman joined the sci-fi project back in May, and now word is she’ll be joined by Gina Rodriguez. The Jane the Virgin star recently attracted some attention when she was reported to be in the running for the Rian Johnson-directed Star Wars Episode VIII. More on the Gina Rodriguez Annihilation casting after the jump.  Read More »


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28 Months Later

28 Months Later will probably happen at some point. While the sequel, 28 Weeks Later, wasn’t as successful or as cheap as Danny Boyle‘s (Steve Jobs) original film, it performed well enough not to kill off the series. Juan Carlos Fresnadillo‘s sequel is also a good movie, so it’s not like audiences would have an allergic reaction to another one of these films. Who will direct the third installment has always been a question mark, but 12 years after creating this zombie-infested world, Danny Boyle still might direct 28 Months Later. Learn more after the jump.

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jock star wars episode 8

This year’s MondoCon in Austin, Texas was two days of gorgeous goodness, showcasing mind-blowing pop culture art from all over the world and giving fans a chance to rub elbows with the artists themselves. It’s not the kind of place you go hoping to hear exciting news about new movies, but here we are. During a panel dedicated to his work, comic book, poster and movie concept artist Jock revealed that he’s currently hard at work on two science fiction movies. One of them is small and will be on your radar eventually. The other is already your most anticipated movie of 2017.

Hit the jump for details on the Jock Star Wars Episode 8 announcement!

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Ex Machina director Alex Garland‘s second major film was 28 Days Later, which he wrote for director Danny Boyle. The sequel to that film was only exec produced by Garland, and in general the writer/producer/director hasn’t seemed much interested in making sequels.

But there is talk of another sequel, and as it turns out, if that film does actually shoot the 28 Months Later story will be based on an idea Garland came up with. That’ll be it for him when it comes to that movie, however — Garland won’t be involved in 28 Months Later otherwise. Read More »

Annihilation movie

The novel Annihilation, by Jeff VanderMeer, is really terrific. It’s good enough that you should just stop reading this now, go read Annihilation (it’s short, only 125 pages or so) then come back. Because I’m a realist I’ll assume you didn’t do that, but to avoid spoilers about the novel I’ll just say this: Annihilation is kind of sci-fi and almost horror — it’s like Tarkovsky’s Stalker crossed with H.P. Lovecraft. It is unusual and unsettling, and all the major characters are women.

Alex Garland just did some great work with Ex Machina, and he is set to write and direct an Annihilation movie. Now he has Natalie Portman in talks to play the lead role. That is excellent news. Read More »

Alex Garland Ex Machina 2

Talking in details about Ex Machina is difficult without spoiling some of the film’s biggest reveals. Writer/director Alex Garland has crafted a fascinating sci-fi thriller and, in speaking with both he and star Oscar Isaac, we had to talk about some of the bigger questions the raised by the end of the film.

On the topic of one particular question, the actor and director had opposite ideas about how things would have played out. In discussing some of the facets of the ending, Isaac offers interesting insight in what the film pretends to be, what it actually is, and what the characters are thinking. Below, read the director and actor talk about the Ex Machina ending. And, of course, major spoiler warning. Read More »

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ex machina dance scene

Alex Garland‘s directorial debut Ex Machina knocked us out with its combination of provocative writing, impeccable craftsmanship, and detailed performances from Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, and Alicia Vikander. The film has played around the world and is gradually expanding across the United States.

Now there’s one more Ex Machina trailer to see, and it’s a doozy — a brief but dense treatise on the dangers of the development of artificial intelligence, set to some of the film’s darkly ominous score, by Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury. Oh, and the film’s distributor has also released a video featuring the great Ex Machina dance scene. No spoilers in noting that (it’s official marketing, after all) but for those who’ve already seen the film, the second video below is going to be your jam. Read More »

Alex Garland Ex Machina

Alex Garland‘s Ex Machina feels familiar while also being unique. It may be the latest in a string of films about artificial intelligence, but the look of the movie, the tension it creates, and the surprises within do everything to separate it from films such as Her, Transcendence and Chappie.

Garland, making his directorial debut, had all of that in his head when shooting Ex Machina. He purposely avoided every other piece of new pop culture out there that may have lined up with his movie, but he also used older movies as a reference to make something fresh. The result is an electric, frightening film that’s achieves great deal from three characters (played by Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson) dealing with some very heavy issues.

In our interview with Garland, we talked about how he maintained tension on set, as well as the connections the film may have had with stories like Black Mirror, some of his aims in creating this story, the beautiful design of the robot Ava and whether or not he asked his lead actors about their roles in Star Wars. Below, read our Alex Garland Ex Machina interview. Read More »

oscar isaac Ex Machina

Fans love to complain that good sci-fi isn’t released any longer. Alex Garland‘s Ex Machina, however, is good sci-fi. The passage of time may even turn it into great sci-fi. The film stars Oscar Isaac as Nathan, a billionaire savant who created a fictional analog to Google. He invites Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson), one of his employees, to his secluded home in order to test a new piece of technology. That technology is a beautiful, mysterious, artificially intelligent robot named Ava (Alicia Vikander)

After that setup, the film is very careful about letting us know what is really going on. Caleb, Nathan and Ava all seemingly have their own agendas in a very tense, very exciting sci-fi story that surprises from the first moment to the last.

We were lucky enough to speak to Isaac about this great movie. He discussed how he shaped such a fascinating, yet seemingly familiar character, creating tension on set, the influences on the character – including Stanley Kubrick – and, of course, some discussion of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and X-Men Apocalypse.

There are no spoilers here. We’ll post those after opening weekend. For now, read our Oscar Isaac Ex Machina interview. Read More »