Spielberg Documentary

Steven Spielberg is one of our greatest living filmmakers. While some may want to write the Jaws filmmaker off as nothing more than a purveyor of popular blockbusters, very few directors understand the language of cinema as well as Spielberg. While many filmmakers can’t block a shot to save their lie, Spielberg can convey an entire story wordlessly with his imagery. He’s one of the medium’s true masters.

Susan Lacy‘s new HBO documentary Spielberg takes a look at the successful filmmakers vast career, and we picked out 10 revealing facts from the Spielberg documentary that you should know. And then you should watch the doc for yourself, of course.

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zodiac

Hello, /Film readers. It is I, Chris Evangelista. You may (or may not!) be familiar with my writing here, as I’ve been contributing to /Film since April. But now I’m part of the staff, and I’m very excited about that. I’m also very excited to tell you my 15 favorite movies. Some of these movies are downright masterpieces, others are like comforting junk food. I try not to limit myself in terms of “quality.” If a movie gets a reaction out of me, I consider it a success.  

I see a lot of movies. Too many, in fact. And what I’m always looking for is that spark. That feeling that I’m seeing something unique; something special; something to make me sit up and take notice.

This was a bit harder than I thought it would be, simply because there are so many movies I could include on this list, but these are the ones that I think are the most important. For now, at least. This list could easily change in a week.

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Mondo E.T. The Extra Terrestrial Print

This year marks the 35th anniversary of E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, and the Amblin Entertainment sci-fi adventure is celebrating with the release of a new commemorative home video release today, which also marks the first time the film has been made available on 4K Ultra HD. But that’s not all Steven Spielberg fans can do to celebrating the touching classic.

Mondo has announced a new E.T. The Extra Terrestrial print by Jonathan Burton in celebration of the 35th anniversary, and it’s a gorgeous image featuring the titular alien trying to contact his home planet. Check out the Mondo E.T. The Extra Terrestrial print below and find out when and how to get it. Read More »

The Best Movie Creatures of All Time

Kong Skull Island

Every week in /Answers, we attempt to answer a new pop culture-related question. This week’s edition asks “Which is your favorite creature in a movie?” 

As always, we have submissions from the /Film writing crew and podcast team alongside a special guest. This week, we are joined by Jordan Vogt-Roberts, director of the Sundance Film Festival sensation The Kings of Summer and the upcoming monster movie Kong: Skull Island. Find out the best movie creatures of all time below!

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Jaws 19 trailer

Now that Steven Spielberg is back at Universal, many industry insiders have been wondering if the legendary filmmaker will dig into his Amblin archives for some new remakes or sequels. Well, we know two things for sure: He will never remake Jaws or E.T. But what other movies in the Amblin library might he be considering?

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melissa mathison dead

Melissa Mathison, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter who wrote screenplays for filmmakers as varied as Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, and Frank Oz, has passed away after a battle with neuroendocrine cancer. She was 65 years old.

Although her filmography showcases a command of several genres, she will forever be known as the woman who wrote E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. By playing a key role in one of the most beloved films of all time, Mathison touched the lives of millions of people all over the world.

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Jurassic World The Avengers Box Office

So you’ve probably heard by now, Jurassic World beat The Avengers U.S. box office opening record. Colin Trevorrow’s Jurassic Park sequel grossed $208,806,270 in the opening weekend, just enough to overtake Joss Whedon’s The Avengers‘ $207.4 million record from 2012. Marvel Studios has published an image online to congratulate the “new box office king.” Check it out, after the jump.

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Steven Spielberg arcades in movies

In honor of the news that Steven Spielberg will be directing a big screen adaptation of Ready Player One, here is our September 2014 posting about Spielberg’s love for video games and specifically his 1980’s arcade game collection.

An Arcades in Movies supercut has been posted online chronicling arcade games in cinema from the year 1975 to 1994. And to add something extra, I’ve included a gallery of photos of a young Steven Spielberg and his arcade collection from the 1980’s as well as details on a forward the young filmmaker wrote in a book on arcade video games. Check out the Steven Spielberg arcade game collection photos and more, after the jump.

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Casting Elliott in ET

I really love what The Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences has been doing lately with their Academy Originals series of videos which take a look at the art and stories behind the making of the movies we love. The latest video features Casting director Marci Liroff (Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and Mean Girls) recounting the story of how Henry Thomas was cast as the lead in Steven Spielberg‘s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.

As it turns out, Thomas was not the first choice for the role of Elliot. Liroff describes how a game of Dungeons & Dragons at screenwriter Melissa Mathison (who is finally returning to screenwriting for Spielberg’s adaptation of The BFG) changed the corse of a cinema classic, leading to the audition video I’m sure you’ve seen before. Hit the jump to watch the video now.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Early ET concept art

We know the history of Steven Spielberg‘s film E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, and we even know some of the fine details. For example, we’ve seen the early alien designs created by Rick Baker for the aborted project Night Skies. It’s obvious that some of those designs made their way to the stream of concepts that influenced ET when that film was born in the wake of Night Skies being scrapped.

Now we’ve got some rarely seen early ET concept art from Ed Verreaux, who worked with Spielberg as production illustrator starting on Raiders of the Lost Ark. The art by Verreaux shows more of the process of Night Skies alien designs being mutated into the friendly guy we know and love at the center of ET. Read More »