We haven’t seen much so far from 47 Ronin, the film that Carl Erik Rinch directed with Keanu Reeves, as a semi-remake of a story that has been filmed in Japan several times. We know the movie also features Hiroyuki Sanada, Kou Shibasaki, Tadanobu Asano and Rinko Kikuchi, and we know that it is an effects-heavy 3D affair. In fact, the release was just pushed back a couple months, reportedly so more work can be done on the final effects renders.

Yesterday Jeff Snider from Variety tweeted about info on a test screening of the film, but along with that he shot out a low-res image of a poster for the film. The banded image features four character portraits, with text labels Outsider, Demon, Witch and Savage. All combined, that contributes to our understanding that this take on the story is fairly different from previously filmed versions.

Check out the small poster image below. Read More »

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Thursday afternoon at CinemaCon, Universal Pictures presented footage, clips and trailers from their upcoming 2012 line-up and beyond. Included in the presentation were clips from Snow White and the Huntsman, Oliver Stone‘s Savages, Seth MacFarlane‘s TED, The Bourne Legacy, Les Miserables, Judd Apatow‘s This Is 40, Carl Erik Rinsch‘s 47 Ronin, Joseph Kosinski‘s Oblivion, and R.I.P.D.. Per usual, I recorded a video blog after the presentation with Alex from FirstShowing and Frosty from Collider. We give our reactions to the footage without spoilers or in depth descriptions. Watch the video blog now embedded after the jump.

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Once slated for mid-November this year, the new 3D version of the classic samurai story 47 Ronin will have to wait for February 2013 to play for audiences. Universal has pushed the film back to February 8, 2013, without citing any specific reason. (As is usually the case with date changes.) The new opening date places it against the Nicholas Sparks film Safe Haven, and a week before A Good Day to Die Hard. Read More »

Pretty minor stuff here, but here’s the first look at Keanu Reeves in costume for the Carl Erik Rinsch film 47 Ronin. The movie is a remake, in name at least, of a Japanese film from 1947, but what we’ve heard about the film so far suggests that Rinch is going for something a bit more his own than just a straight remake. The story has been around far longer than sixty-some years, so Rinsch has many previous versions to draw on, but also the leeway to give his own spin on the tale. (Which includes shooting this version in 3D.)

Rinsch is noted for being a Ridley Scott protege, and he was once attached to direct a film related to Alien way before that movie evolved into Prometheus, with Scott taking directorial duties. Rinsch was also set to direct Logan’s Run before dropping off that project (making room for Nicolas Winding Refn) and to make 47 Ronin.

We don’t have actual stills from the film yet, but after the break you’ll find a shot of Reeves in character, and images of a couple other players in their film garb. Read More »

Commercial director Carl Erik Rinsch‘s big screen debut 47 Ronin won’t hit theaters until November 2012, but he somehow found time to shoot a new short film/commercial for Mercedes-Benz during the film’s post production period.

Rinsch’s commercials show an amazing sense of imagination, visual effects artistry and composition. We’ve profiled his amazing commercials on the site, more than once. You might recall that Rinsch was originally tapped to direct a prequel/remake of Alien, before Fox convinced Ridley Scott to helm the project himself. Rinsch’s futuristic action thriller short film The Gift quickly spread around the internet, sparking a bidding war to turn the short film into a feature. Before his first film is even finished, Rinsch has become one of the most in demand director’s in new Hollywood — his name seems to appear on every other big tentpole short list these days.

“Escape The Map” is set inside the computer world — a virtually-rendered Hong Kong. It looks like something like what I imagine Rinsch would’ve have pitched for Tron: Legacy — the result looks kind of a mash-up of The Matrix and Inception. Mariah Bonner plays Marie, someone who finds herself and her C 63 AMG Coupé trapped inside Google Streetview. The short also features music created by Oscar-winning composer Atticus Ross‘ (The Social Network) company 1159.

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Unless someone is invited to go to set by a studio, actors rarely talk in public during the filming of a major Hollywood motion picture. Keanu Reeves, however, who is currently shooting Universal’s 3D action film 47 Ronin, directed by Carl Erik Rinsch, took some time off from shooting the film to speak to the Los Angeles Times. He’d just finished 34 days of shooting in Budapest, Hungary with the production now scheduled to move to London, England. During the discussion, Reeves dropped several new nuggets of information about the film, scheduled for release November 2012, including what language it would be in, his character motivations and more. Read his quotes after the jump. Read More »

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Keanu Reeves is currently shooting the epic period samurai film 47 Ronin, directed by acclaimed commercial director and Ridley Scott protege Carl Erik Rinsch. Based on a true 18th Century Japanese story, the film follows a band of samurai swordsmen who are shamed into becoming the titular ronin — a Japanese word meaning lord-less samurai, and must avenge the death of their master. They construct a huge plan and sacrifice everything to see it through. Wanted screenwriter Chris Morgan has described the project as a “great, Gladiator-esque, 300-like big action movie with samurai and ninja.” Reeves recently talked with MTV, and described the movie as “kind of a western”.

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[UPDATE: This original story has been updated with an official press release, plot description, character names and high resolution cast photo. Check it all out after the jump.]

With Keanu Reeves set to star in Carl Erik Rinsch‘s 47 Ronin, by my math, still leaves about 46 Ronin to be cast. The 3D production is heating up and Variety is reporting that four more roles have been cast. Japanese actors Tadanobu Asano, Kou Shibasaki, Rinko Kikuchi and Hiroyuki Sanada have all joined the film.

Asano is familiar to film geeks for his roles in Ichi the Killer, Mongol and Zatoichi among many others, plus he’s got a two big movies coming up, Thor and Battleship. Shibasaki was in Go, Battle Royale and the original One Missed Call. Kikuchi is known to American audiences from her leading roles in Babel and The Brothers Bloom and Sanada is best known for roles in The Last Samuari, Sunshine and as Dogen in the final season of Lost. Ken Watanabe was rumored to be a part of the film, but that is still just a rumor.

Read more about Rinsch’s 47 Ronin, scheduled for release Thanksgiving 2012, and this casting after the jump. Read More »

Though it started as a very insider thing, The Black List has recently become more popular and mainstream. For those who may not know, it’s an annual list of the year’s best unproduced screenplays as voted on by about 300 Hollywood development executives and high-level assistants. We recently posted the 2010 list and looking back at some previous years (2007, 2008, 2009), films such as Recount, The Beaver and The Social Network all sat near the top of the list. Skim over any of them and you’ll see names of films that are out, are coming out and more. It’s a big deal.

This year, a new Black List of sorts has come out. Dubbed Viewfinder, it’s supposed to do for directors what The Black List did for screenwriters. Viewfinder is a compilation of “the top commercials, shorts and/or music videos of 2010.” Several of the directors on the list already have deals or are in production on films. We’ve even written about a few of them on /Film. For others, though, this could be their big break. After the jump, check out the full list and link to the page where you can watch all the videos including the #1 film on the list, Ricardo de Montreuil’s The Raven, seen above. Read More »