Nothing is as good as it was 25 years ago, but The Simpsons comes close. The longest running animated show in history may not have the cultural impact or consistent comedy impact it did in the 1990s, but in the past few years, it has expanded beyond mere television. Mobile games, mobile apps, marathons, concerts, The Simpsons is now more than a TV show. It’s a way of life.
That uptick in cultural relevance has not gone unnoticed by the executives at 20th Century Fox. They’ve once again asked producers to do a sequel to 2007′s The Simpsons Movie. But, like the producers said in 2007, 2013 (twice) and now in 2014, it’s still not happening. Read producer James L. Brooks‘ thoughts on a Simpsons Movie sequel, as well as his take on the original film, below. Read More »
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In the midst of the holiday season, when big blockbusters abound, audiences expect to hear that effect driven films TRON: Legacy, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows or The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader have huge budgets in the hundreds of millions of dollars. We see that money on the screen. It’s easy to forget that, while effects can be expensive, movie stars are sometimes even more expensive.
Take a film like James L. Brooks’ How Do You Know for example. Seems like the typical highly polished Hollywood romantic comedy. It has the Oscar winning filmmaker, the big name cast, the love driven plot and little to no special effects to speak of. How much does the average audience member think How Do You Know cost? $40 million? $60 million? How about $120 million? How do we know, exactly? That’s what The Hollywood Reporter is reporting. Read how and why after the jump. Read More »
After more than two decades on the air, one would assume it might be difficult for The Simpsons to remain current and culturally relevant. However, while it’s not as popular as it was fifteen years ago, week after week, the show remains as solid as any comedy on TV. Then, every once in a while, the show does something so outrageous, we all step back and marvel at their brilliance. There was that awesome Banksy moment a few months back and it happened again Sunday night when, during their Season 22 Christmas episode called The Fight Before Christmas, the final segment of the show was done in live action featuring a cameo by pop superstar (and wife of Russell Brand) Katy Perry.
Plus, producer James L. Brooks has stated he and his fellow show producers have jumped the biggest hurdle when it comes to possibly making a sequel to The Simpsons Movie. Watch the clip and read the quote after the jump. Read More »
As I’m sure many readers here will agree, romantic comedies are generally responsible for a lot of the worst films that Hollywood has to offer. Reason being, they rarely do little more than parade about a bunch of shallow pretty people leading too-perfect lives while amusingly simplistic conflicts repeatedly tear them apart and bring them back together. The trailer for James L. Brooks‘ follow-up to Spanglish and As Good as It Gets, How Do You Know, seems to follow this formula pretty closely, and yet the trailer offers just enough to indicate it may actually be worth watching. Could this be the romantic comedy to prove that the throwaway fluff entries in the genre don’t have to be torturous?
The plot centers around “the love triangle between professional softball player Lisa Jorgenson, a corporate executive, and a major-league pitcher,” and stars Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson, and Jack Nicholson.
Check out the trailer after the break. Read More »
When James L. Brooks‘ How Do You Know? first started clocking up column inches in the trades, we knew almost nothing about it. Reese Witherspoon was attached to star and there was the title, which could prove to be temporary, anyway and… then a few tumbleweeds chased a red balloon out of town and the radios went dead.
Now we know a little bit more, including the identity of the two young, male movie stars in talks to join up as love interests for Ms. Witherspoon’s character. Variety tell us that Paul Rudd and Owen Wilson - by my reckoning, two of the four great American male comedy stars of the last ten years, four chaps that I feel I can count on to entertain and amuse me – are each hovering, pen in hand, waiting to see if their diaries can permit this excursion.
Read More »
On November 25th 2008, Criterion will finally be releasing a Director-Approved Double-Dic Special Edition of Wes Anderson’s first feature film Bottle Rocket. If you haven’t seen Bottle Rocket, than you are really missing out. It is Anderson before he too eccentric to tell a totally relatable story. And don’t get me wrong, I love Anderson’s work. But you have to admit, film by film, they got weirder, quirky, more involved to the point that it becomes hard to relate to three brothers taking a spiritual journey through India, when it’s really just the same story of family he’s been telling through all his films. That said, I’ve also grown to love Darjeeling too. Anyways, back to Bottle Rocket. The official plot synopsis follows:
“Wes Anderson first illustrated his lovingly detailed, slightly surreal cinematic vision in this witty and warm portrait of three young middle-class misfits. Fresh out of a mental hospital, gentle Anthony (Luke Wilson) finds himself once again embroiled in the machinations of his best friend, elaborate schemer Dignan (Owen Wilson). With the aid of getaway driver Bob (Robert Musgrave), they develop a needlessly complex, mildly successful plan to rob a small bookstore—then go “on the lam.” Also featuring Lumi Cavazos as Inez, the South American housekeeper Anthony falls in love with, and James Caan as local thief extraordinaire Mr. Henry, Bottle Rocket is a charming, hilarious, affectionate look at the folly of dreamers. Shot against radiant southwestern backdrops, it’s the film that put Anderson and the Wilson brothers on the map.”
Here is the list of features from the upcoming release:
- New, restored high-definition digital transfer supervised and approved by director Wes Anderson and director of photography Robert Yeoman
- Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack
- Commentary by director/co-writer Anderson and co-writer/actor Owen Wilson
- The Making of “Bottle Rocket”: an original documentary by filmmaker Barry Braverman featuring Anderson, James L. Brooks, James Caan, Temple Nash Jr., Kumar Pallana, Polly Platt, Mark Mothersbaugh, Robert Musgrave, Richard Sakai, David and Sandy Wasco, Andrew and Luke and Owen Wilson, and Robert Yeoman
- The original thirteen-minute black-and-white Bottle Rocket short film from 1992
- Eleven deleted scenes
- Anamorphic screen test, storyboards, location photos, and behind-the-scenes photographs by Laura Wilson
- Murita Cycles, a 1978 short film by Braverman
- The Shafrazi Lectures, no. 1: Bottle Rocket
- A booklet featuring an essay by executive producer James L. Brooks, an appreciation by Martin Scorsese, and original artwork by Ian Dingman.
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According to DH, Simpsons Producer/Writer James L. Brooks claims that there was 166 drafts of The Simpsons Movie screenplay. Is that a new record for Hollywood?
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Think you know what The Simpsons Movie is about? Think again. Simpsons Writer/Director/Producer James L Brooks claims that 70% of the theatrical trailer is not even in the finished film:
“It started out as people wanting to know what it was about, and then we were having fun with it, putting out false story lines. We’ve revealed more with each successive trailer. We’ll continue to do that,” Brooks told EW. “We saw a trailer the other day, and somebody said 70 percent of the things in it – based on where we were eight weeks ago – are no longer in the movie, because we keep on fooling around.”
Brooks also revealed that “there are 94 speaking parts [so far]. And our animals don’t speak,” and “at least one [new character]. If you count nonhuman, two.” The Simpsons Movie hits theaters on July 27th 2007.