PETE'S DRAGON

David Lowery‘s Pete’s Dragon is a simple, beautiful and warm tale of friendship. It’s a refreshingly sparse story that hardly resembles the original Disney film. Lowery and co-writer Toby Halbrooks lifted very little from the ’77 musical; they made a movie that stands on its own and doesn’t rely at all on nostalgia.

The film was well received when it was in theaters, but now that it’s on home video, more viewers will likely embrace Elliot and Pete’s heartfelt and tender adventure. With Pete’s Dragon now on Blu-ray, we recently had the chance to speak with Lowery again, and he reflected on some of the toughest and most enjoyable days during the shoot, not reading the reviews, the lessons he learned, and the experience of working with Robert Redford again.

Below, read our David Lowery interview.

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sundance 2017 line-up

We’re only a few short weeks away from the Sundance Film Festival. This year Peter, Angie, and Ethan are on the ground covering the fest, meaning they’ll get to see new movies from filmmakers such as David Lowery (Pete’s Dragon), Gillian Robespierre (Obvious Child), Alex Ross Perry (Listen Up, Phillip), Marti Noxon (UnREAL), and Matthew Heineman (Cartel Land). The Festival has announced the 66 films playing in competition in addition to titles out of competition as part of the NEXT lineup. Expect more titles showing at the festival to be announced shortly. The film fest kicks off in Park City, Utah on January 19th.

Below, check out the Sundance 2017 line-up.

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casey-affleck-aint-them-bodies-saints

Well, this is exciting. Around the time director David Lowery‘s Pete’s Dragon remake was released he filmed another feature with his Ain’t Them Bodies Saints stars, Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara. Lowery shot the mystery film in Dallas, where he’ll soon shoot his next drama, The Old Man and the Gun, which he calls a bit of a tribute to its star, Robert Redford.

Below, learn more about the secret David Lowery movie.

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david lowery talks the old man and the gun

The Old Man and the Gun is David Lowery‘s next project. The Ain’t Them Bodies Saints and Pete’s Dragon director is reuniting with Casey Affleck and Robert Redford for the movie, which is a remarkable true story about a man who spent much of his life in and out of jail and robbing banks, even when he was nearly 80 years old. Redford is playing that man, Forrest Tucker, in a film Lowery calls a tribute to Redford.

Below, the writer-director discusses his next collaboration with the actor.

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The Old Man and the Gun - Casey Affleck

David Lowery signed on to direct The Old Man and the Gun and Pete’s Dragon right around the same time. It was initially unclear which movie would happen first, but when Pete’s Dragon began to pick up speed, Lowery asked Robert Redford to play Mr. Meacham, so their other project had to wait. Now, the drama, based on a true story, is moving forward with Lowery, Redford, and a new addition, Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea).

Below, learn more about the David Lowery project.

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david lowery

Director David Lowery‘s reimagining of Disney’s Pete’s Dragon is a very, very loose remake. It’s more detached from the original film than any of the other live-action Disney remakes. For Lowery and co-writer Toby Halbrooks, a boy, Pete (Oakes Fegley), and a dragon, Elliot, were all they needed to take from the 1977 musical.

Halbrooks and Lowery’s tale of friendship is character-driven and sparse. Unlike most films we’ve seen this summer, it’s not driven by set pieces or conventional spectacle. Pete’s Dragon is basically a big budget drama. At the film’s press day, Lowery was kind enough to discuss crafting his latest picture with us, how the story evolved, working with Robert Redford, and how a bank commercial inspired him.

Below, read our David Lowery interview.

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Pete's Dragon Trailer

It’s been a great year for Walt Disney Pictures with success in both live-action and animation. Zootopia is one of the most successful movies of the year, Finding Dory was a huge box office hit, and the live-action remake of The Jungle Book may be the best revision of their classic animated movies yet. But the studio isn’t done bringing magic to movie theaters just yet.

Pete’s Dragon is yet another remake of a classic Disney movie. However, as we’ve seen in the trailers so far, this new take on the 1977 live-action and animated hybrid could not be more different from the original. Basically, the only thing they share is a camaraderie between a young boy and a dragon in the woods. And the more we see from Pete’s Dragon, the more excited I am to see it, and you just might feel the same way after watching a new trailer from across the pond.

Watch the Pete’s Dragon trailer from the United Kingdom after the jump. Read More »

pete's dragon clips

In some ways, Pete’s Dragon seemed like an unlikely candidate for a remake. The original was seen by plenty of people, but wasn’t exactly an acclaimed classic on par with Cinderella or The Jungle Book (both of which have also recently gotten remakes from Disney). And even once we knew a Pete’s Dragon remake was coming, David Lowery seemed like an unexpected choice. As a director, he was best known for the gritty crime drama Ain’t Them Bodies Saints; his resume also includes lots of editing work on offbeat indies like Upstream Color.

So would this turn out to be an inspired marriage of material and talent, or an obvious mismatch? Well, the first Pete’s Dragon reviews are in, so you can find out for yourself after the jump.  Read More »

pete's dragon clips

Director David Lowery is probably doing something right with his upcoming remake of Pete’s Dragon because I’m not a fan of the 1977 original in the slightest but I fully intend to see the new version in its opening weekend. Maybe my soft spot for tales of isolated youngsters finding families is showing, or maybe I’m just a sucker for dragons, but everything we’ve seen from this movie looks charming and sweet and the right shade of adventurous.

Two new clips from the film have arrived online and they haven’t changed my mind. This looks like it could be one of 2016’s better family movies.

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Pete's Dragon image

Disney’s last remake, The Jungle Book, made close to a billion dollars. Audiences keep turning out to see their live-action reimaginings, and maybe partly because they’re improving in quality. Following up some of the studio’s previous efforts, like Alice in Wonderland and Maleficent, both Cinderella and The Jungle Book surpassed some’s expectations. Not everybody pegged them to be, creatively and financially, as successful as they are. Going into David Lowery‘s (Ain’t Them Bodies Saints) loose remake of Pete’s Dragon, perhaps some of those skeptics will have higher expectations for this tale of friendship.

Below, watch the first Pete’s Dragon clip.

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