Posted on Wednesday, March 18th, 2009 by David Chen
In this episode of the /Filmcast, David Chen, Devindra Hardawar and Adam Quigley praise the work of Ron Silver, get excited about Sam Raimi’s return, debate the caliber of American action films in recent years, and wonder exactly why the executives in charge of the SciFi Channel hate their loyal fans. Special guest Brad Brevet joins us from Rope of Silicon.
You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Join us next Monday night at Slashfilm’s live page at 9 PM EST / 6 PM PST as we review Tony Gilroy’s Duplicity.
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Posted on Wednesday, March 11th, 2009 by David Chen
Before Sam Raimi made mega-blockbusters Spider-Man 1 through 3, he was revered by film geeks for films like Evil Dead and Army of Darkness. His newest film, Drag Me To Hell, looks to be a return to form: Early buzz on the film has been pretty positive and a work-in-progress print of the film is scheduled to premiere at SXSW. Today, the trailer for Drag Me To Hell has surfaced online. Hit the jump to check it out and let us know what you think in the comments!
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South By Southwest has announced that Sam Raimi will premiere a work-in-progress print of Drag Me To Hell, and Jonathan Demme will premiere his new Neil Young performance film, Neil Young Trunk Show, at the upcoming 2009 film festival. Read the full press release after the jump.
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It seems like a bunch of Los Angeles-based film fans snuck into a super secret advanced screening of Drag Me to Hell. So is Sam Raimi‘s return to horror the real deal? It appears so. Here is a round up of quotes from around the web. We’ll add more when they become available, so check back.
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Earlier today, MTV released four new photos from Drag Me to Hell, Sam Raimi’s return to the horror film genre. For one reason or another, we’ve barely covered this film on /Film, so with Halloween on the horizon, I thought now might be as good of time as any other.
Co-written by Raimi with his brother Ivan, Drag Me to Hell tels the story of a young woman who isdesperate to break an evil curse. Alison Lohman stars as Christine Brown, “an ambitious L.A. loan officer with a charming boyfriend, professor Clay Dalton (Justin Long). Life is good until the mysterious Mrs. Ganush (Lorna Raver) arrives at the bank to beg for an extension on her home loan. Christine denies the extension to impress her boss, Mr. Jacks (David Paymer), shaming Mrs. Ganush and dispossessing her of her home. In retaliation, the old woman places the powerful curse of the Lamia on Christine, transforming her life into a living hell. Haunted by an evil spirit and misunderstood by a skeptical boyfriend, she seeks the aid of seer Rham Jas (Dileep Rao) to save her soul from eternal damnation. To help the shattered Christine return her life to normal, the psychic sets her on a frantic course to reverse the spell. As evil forces close in, Christine must face the unthinkable: how far will she go to break free of the curse?”
Raimi’s name will have me at the theater on opening night, but I’ve never been a fan of stories having to do with curses and such. And the set of photos released thus far look nothing beyond the average modern horror film.
Raimi describes the film as a chance to get back to his roots and make a small movie: “This script was one I wrote with my brother many years ago, but we couldn’t get the money to make it with the director we wanted at the time. I decided it would be a great change for me to get back to the basics of filmmaking, a chance to work with a smaller budget and challenge myself with the more old-fashioned ways — not being able to afford a crane every day, covering five or six pages of material every day, back to those basics of less luxurious filmmaking. I thought that would be refreshing.”
Head on over to MTV for Sam’s full interview, and click on the photos to above them in higher resolution on MTV. Drag Me To Hell hits theaters on May 29th 2009.
Cool Posts From Around the Web:
Here is a round up of stories that just didn’t make the /Film front page, or what we like to call…. Page 2!
Collider has the first photos of Xzibit from X-Files: I Want to Believe.
Film School Rejects has obtained footage of the Ninja from Ask a Ninja talking about Fanboys.
Shock has a couple borring photos of Megan Fox on the set of Jennifer’s Body.
Actress Lindsay Lohan’s 14-year-old kid sister, Ali, has been cast in a film based on R.L. Stine’s pre-teen book series “Mostly Ghostly.” [THR]
Last week at a Back to the Future screening in Florida, writer/producer Bob Gale announced that Universal was working on a Blu-ray release of the classic 80’s film: “I dont’ know when it’s coming out yet, but I was involved in the mastering of this tape, so I can tell you that it looks absolutely beautiful!” [bttf]
KungFuRodeo has a photo of the Speed Racer advertisement in Times Square.
You can now listen to Fergie’s Sex and the City theme, but why would you want to. [badandugly]
Fox 2000 has hired Brian McGreevy and Lee Shipman to write a re-imagining of Brian De Palma’s 1978 supernatural thriller The Fury. [scifi]
Adriana Barraza (Babel) has been cast in Sam Raimi’s Drag Me to Hell. [Bloody-disgusting]
Juno generated an estimated $8.4 million in its first week of release on DVD. [THR]
Christina Ricci feels that the marketing campaign for Black Snake Moan exploited woman. No duh! [starpulse]
Yoko Ono has filed suit against the filmmakers of “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” for the unauthorized use of John Lennon’s classic 1971 song, “Imagine.” [theplaylist]
There’s a lot of minor news breaking today and falling in between the cushions of Slashfilm’s buttery soft couch. I’ve decided to reach in and present the tasty morsels for your enjoyment. Don’t like some of ’em? Well, your dog doesn’t discriminate and if it does, surprise, it’s a kitty.
October’s Max Payne video adaptation continues to build a curious borderline-honor roll of a cast, with Chris O’Donnell (Robin) climbing out of the Where Are They Now File to star alongside Mark Wahlberg (title role), the foxy Mila Kunis (uh, assassin love interest), Beau friggin’ Bridges (mentor) and Donal Logue (not playing Jimmy the Cab Driver). O’Donnell will play nipple-free “executive Jason Colvin.” Exciting, innit? Now, if only the film was rated R. (EW)
Javier Bardem, the biggest star in born again director Francis Ford Coppola‘s follow-up to Youth Without Youth, Tetro, has either dropped out or been replaced on a huge creative whim. Coppola will recast the role of Bardem’s mentor to Vincent Gallo’s title character with Carmen Maura, whom you may have caught in Volver. Hmmm, Coppola could have certainly used the awareness of the Oscar winner. Too bad. (HR) As we all do when a job falls through, Bardem is said to be considering a role as a respected wine critic in a film entitled The First Emperor starring naughty monkeys Helen Mirren and Hugh Grant. (DH)
The horror! Another fresh face from The O.C. has washed ashore on Crystal Lake. Amanda Rhigetti, an 8, is close to signing on as the female lead in Platinum Dunes’ Friday the 13th. How about a cameo by Adam Brody’s head? (Variety)
Latino Review sum up Sam Raimi‘s script to his upcoming Drag Me to Hell with three words: Predictable as hell. Slashfilm previously summed up the entire movie even more succinctly with: Justin Long. Obviously we’re too smart to add “as hell” to that. However, that was before we caught Long’s performance in The Sasquatch Gang (now on DVD), which was maddeningly chuckle-inducing. “Predictable as hell” it is, then.
Billy Crudup is that guy you call when your film is looking good. He’ll play J. Edgar Hoover (kinky) in Michael Mann‘s Public Enemies, which stars Johnny Depp, Christian Bale and the Dorf and has as much chance as sucking as UNC losing the Final Four. Jinx? Hardly. [Variety]
Where’s my sickly neighbor from 1988’s inhaler? Joshua Jackson says he will not be playing Fletch in the remake. Chevy Chase’s is one of my favorite Chevy Chase films. I say cast Michael Cera and let Jason Lee choke on a furball. [MTV]
The new film from Heathers writer/legend Daniel Waters opens tomorrow in select theaters. It’s called Sex and Death 101. Here’s an interview with Waters that’s so chockfull of amazingly pretentious, pseudo-intellectual name dropping it makes us realize how rarely we come across screenwriter interviews like this anymore. More Waters, please.
Hard hitter producer Graham King (The Departed, Blood Diamond) and Warner Bros. hope to bring the Hugo Award-winning sci-fi series Hyperion Cantos to life on screen via a script by relative newcomer Trevor Sands. I’m not familiar with author Dan Simmons‘s works, but the plot is said to be set on a planet called Hyperion that has lucid blue skies, “electricity-spewing trees,” and a mysterious region called the Time Tombs, where time travel evidently goes down amongst artifacts. And a very pissed off monster guards them. Ooh la la. Sands will combine the first two novels, Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion in his script. An original, brainy sci-fi film? All for it. Any fans, please sounds off in the comments below. (HR)
Peter emailed me the following question regarding the announcement that Justin Long will now star in Sam Raimi‘s Drag Me to Hell: How did a movie go from so much potential with a return to old form, an Oscar nominated actress [Ellen Page] attached, to a Justin Long movie? I have no idea, but I too would rather see Mr. PC star in Raimi’s first horror thriller in years than the baby-faced star of Jeepers Creepers, Drew Barrymore’s prolonged youth and Apple propaganda.
Long (Live Free of Die Hard) will star alongside Ellen Page’s lesser known replacement, actress Alison Lohman, who joined the film just days ago after Page bailed due to scheduling conflicts. Written by Raimi and his brother Ivan, not much is known about Drag Me to Hell except that it will follow the unfortunate recipient of a supernatural curse, it has an awesome title, and it harks back to Raimi’s Evil Dead salad days but with less gore and less Bruce Campbell.
Next up for Long is He’s Just Not That Into You. Make ’em swoon Long, make ’em swoon.
Discuss: What has more scary potential, Drag Me to Hell or Justin Long in a movie?
Blonds tells fewer blog jokes, it’s a fact, so maybe director Sam Raimi is onto something by casting actress Alison Lohman (Beowulf, Flicka) in the lead role formerly occupied by Ellen Page (Juno) in his upcoming horror thriller Drag Me to Hell.
Oscar nominee Page aborted the project days ago amid rumors that she was unhappy with the script by Raimi and his brother Ivan Raimi. There was also the trusty rumor that Page forever hisses at her agent anytime she hears the words “how about a horror movie, Ellen” post-Academy Awards. As our pub brothers at FirstShowing have pointed out, Variety reported on Sunday that the real reason might have been, yep, “scheduling differences” after all…
“We were racing to start production so that we could accommodate Ellen’s schedule,” Ghost House and Mandate said in a joint statement. “But like so many other productions trying to start before the potential SAG strike date, this one needed more time, and we had to push back the start of production.”
Indeed, the SAG strike is fast becoming the new “forgot my homework,” or, sure, WGA strike. Lohman, who is almost 30 but looks teenish, is of Irish descent, an environmentalist and I’m sure she can belt out a scream with the best of them. But I dunno, does she have the spark, that hamburger phone aura, that Page has?
Discuss: Page versus Loh(m)an. What difference does this play in your anticipation of Drag Me to Hell?