Unbroken trailer

Angelina Jolie’s feature directing debut In the Land of Blood and Honey didn’t get a ton of attention. But her follow-up Unbroken is already looking like an early contender for the Oscar race, with an uplifting fact-based plot and a plum Christmas release date.

Based on the book by Laura Hillenbrand (Seabiscuit), Unbroken follows Louis Zamperini (Jack O’Connell) from his humble roots to his Olympic stardom, World War II service, and stay in a Japanese POW camp. Domhnall Gleeson, Takamasa Ishihara, Garrett Hedlund, and Finn Wittrock also star. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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Starred Up review

Jack O’Connell is one of those names you don’t know yet, but will very soon. The 24-year-old British actor has been in the mix for a bunch of high-profile roles over the past few years, and finally booked one in 300: Rise of an Empire — before nabbing an even bigger one in Angelina Jolie‘s Unbroken. And while we’ve seen lots of pretty young faces come and go, his performance in David Mackenzie‘s excellent prison drama Starred Up suggests that this one has real staying power.

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Joe Cornish to Direct MI6 Thriller ‘Section 6′

Joe Cornish Section 6

Joe Cornish made quite a splash in 2011 with his debut directorial effort Attack the Block. And he’s kept busy since, co-writing Ant-Man and The Adventures of Tintin with Edgar Wright. But it’s only now that he’s getting around to making a decision on his next directing gig.

Universal has tapped Cornish to direct Section 6, a Black List script about the formation of British intelligence agency MI6. Brit up-and-comer Jack O’Connell has been set to star since earlier this year. More details on the movie after the jump.

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Starred Up

Jack O’Connell is one of those young actors who’s right on the verge of breaking out. He’s not too well known in the U.S. yet (except maybe to U.K. Skins enthusiasts), but he’s on his way there, having come close to some high-profile projects like The Secret Service and Beautiful Creatures. And he should be much more famous by the end of this year, once 300: Rise of an Empire and Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken are through with him.

The film that marks the turning point in his career is Starred Up, a gritty British drama that earned raves upon its Telluride premiere last year. O’Connell plays young Eric Love, a 19-year-old who winds up incarcerated in the same prison that holds his dad, Neville (Ben Mendelsohn). David Mackenzie (Perfect Sense, Young Adam) directed, and Rupert Friend also stars. Watch the intriguing first trailer after the jump.

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It's a Wonderful Life

Despite Paramount’s objections, the producer for It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story is confident his project will go forward. Sorry, haters. Also after the jump:

  • Channing Tatum could still return for G.I. Joe 3
  • … and Adrianne Palicki is definitely going to be back
  • Kellan Lutz had to get smaller for The Expendables 3
  • Paramount and MGM team up for Hot Tub Time Machine 2
  • NBC okays a sequel to The Bible (the show, not the book)
  • Jack O’Connell and Lena Headey get their own 300 posters

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’300: Rise of an Empire’ Trailer

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Here’s the new trailer for 300: Rise of an Empire, the follow-up to Zack Snyder’s breakout hit 300. This one has been a long time coming, but now, after everything, the film and the new trailer might have new significance, again thanks to Snyder. The director is looking at this movie’s co-star, Callan Mulvey, as a likely villain choice for Batman vs. Superman. Does the footage below give any clue to how he might be used? Of course not, but those who’ve waited a long time for the 300 follow-up will want to have a look. Read More »

unbroken-jolie-louis

When is a first look at a film not actually a first look at the movie? In this case, it’s when Universal sends out a shot (above) of Angelina Jolie with Louis “Louie” Zamperini, who is the subject of her new directorial effort, Unbroken. But in this case it’s a good call, because Zamperini is a war hero, and deserves his place in the spotlight.

The story is one Universal first thought about making in the late ’50s; this telling is based on Laura Hillenbrand’s much more recent book Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and RedemptionJack O’Connell will play Louis Zamperini, an Olympian in 1936 and a pilot in WWII. In 1943, his plane crashed in the Pacific, and “he survived without food and water for 47 days, enduring shark attacks, aerial attacks and hunger before washing ashore on a Japanese island behind enemy lines, where he was held as a prisoner of war for two years and tortured by his captors.” Read More »

Garrett Hedlund Joins Angelina Jolie’s ‘Unbroken’

Garrett Hedlund

Briefly: Angelina Jolie has impressive talent working with her behind the camera for her second directorial effort, Unbroken. Roger Deakins is shooting the film, and Joel and Ethan Coen are doing a pass on the script that also bears work from William Nicholson and Richard LaGravenese.

The film is based on the book Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. It tells the story of Lou Zamperini, an Olympian in 1936 and a pilot in WWII. In 1943, his plane crashed in the Pacific, and “he survived without food and water for 47 days, enduring shark attacks, aerial attacks and hunger before washing ashore on a Japanese island behind enemy lines, where he was held as a prisoner of war for two years and tortured by his captors.”

Jack O’Connell (Skins) plays Zemperini, and now Garrett Hedlund, who was hoping to play the central figure himself, has signed on to play another role. We don’t have details on the part he’ll play, but with Deakins and the Coens adding their skills, it might not matter. [Variety]

 

 

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