RondaRousey

Briefly: When fighter Gina Carano successfully leapt from the ring to the big screen in films like Haywire and Fast & Furious 6, she helped establish a path for other women to do the same.

Now Ronda Rousey, who is already set for a role in The Expendables 3, is in talks for Fast and Furious 7. The Olympic medalist is the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion and has been Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Champion. She’ll play ”a minor supporting role that will showcase her fighting skills.”

James Wan is directing, taking over from Justin Lin, and the film will see the returns of cast members such as Vin Diesel and Paul Walker. The film will shoot in Atlanta later this year. [Variety]

 

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Eventually Universal is going to run out of manly actors to cast in the Fast & Furious movies. That won’t happen soon, but the end point will come faster if big names turn down roles.

New guy Luke Evans held down the fort as the bad guy in the most recent film, and [REDACTED, for the few people who haven't seen the film or been spoiled] will show up as the baddie in the next. The pattern of introducing a new character (typically a villain) at the very end of one film, before expanding their role in the sequel that follows, is something Universal evidently wants to continue.

in a piece about the general state of original tentpoles in Hollywood, Deadline reveals that Denzel Washington could have been the next guy to drive against Dom Toretto, but the actor wasn’t interested. Read More »

insidious-2-trailer-2

The first trailer for James Wan‘s Insidious: Chapter 2 probably raised more questions than it answered, especially for those who know the first film well. This new international trailer kicks off in exactly the same manner as that first look, but it doesn’t run long before it veers into some new footage. We see a bit more of the supernatural torment that lies in wait for the characters played by Rose Byrne and Patrick Wilson, and there are hints of Wilson’s character’s past.

And don’t worry, spoilerphobes, there’s still no explicit answer to the question of what that trailer-end ghost was pointing at, and only a small hint of that new wrinkle for the story that Wan talked about when Germain interviewed him a few weeks back.  Read More »

James Wan

I’m not a huge horror film guy, but I probably see more than your average film geek. I’ll be the first to admit that I had little interest in The Conjuring as I usually don’t like possession stories. The idea of someone becoming possessed by someone else has always been a movie storyline pet peeve for me, likely tainted for me by comic book storylines I read as a kid where the superhero somehow becomes controlled by the bad guy. While I was in San Francisco covering the Pacific Rim junket, I was presented with the opportunity to talk to director James Wan. I’ve been a fan of Wan since seeing the first Saw film at Sundance in 2004. That interview is why I ended up seeing The Conjuring in San Francisco and… I’m very glad I did.

The Conjuring is creepy as hell, a well made horror film — a throwback in many ways to the horror films of my childhood. Wan is a master of his craft, and I’m excited to see what he’ll be able to do once Hollywood lets him play in other genres (I really enjoyed his 2007 thriller Death Sentence which was virtually unseen in theaters).

After the jump you can read my interview with James Wan. We talk about The Conturing‘s connection to AMITYVILLE, the importance of the period setting of the film, the struggle with creating a horrific story while trying to stay true to the true story, the Perron family’s reaction to the movie, delving into some of the filmmaking techniques employed in this film including the sound and an early tracking shot, and I tried to get him to talk about his upcoming gig directing Fast & Furious 7.

Read More »

Conjuring Vera Farmiga

New horror films often seem like a great way to beget a new franchise — there’s a rich tradition of horror film series, after all, and any company releasing horror into movie theaters is easily tempted by the sweet smell of franchise money.

And so The Conjuring, which has been the benificiary of rave reviews since debuting at the LA Film Festival and going into many preview and word of mouth screenings, is already looking locked for a sequel and possible franchise. James Wan‘s film doesn’t even open until Friday, so that’s a big vote of confidence in the movie.

Indeed, while I seemed to like The Conjuring less than many other viewers, the scares and hauntings within are very well done, and there’s rich potential for more stories in a similar mold. That’s because the movie is based on a case investigated by Ed and Lorraine Warren (played by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) who are perhaps best known for going on to chronicle the Amityville Horror. Read More »

The Conjuring

There’s a great bit of stage banter from Tom Waits where he jokes about someone leaning over during a movie to insist “you know, this is based on a true story.” The question from Waits is: does that really make the film any better?

I’ve seen James Wan‘s new film, The Conjuring, and despite the fact that the film begins with a card that says it is based on a true story, I assumed it was one of those Texas Chainsaw Massacre things — a gentle little lie to give the story a bit of weight. Then I remembered that, in fact, this is based on something from reality. The Conjuring brings to the screen a story from the archives of the same husband and wife team that later investigated a famous house in Amityville, New York.

There’s a healthy collection of really well-done haunting scenes in the film, and while it’s probably better to just watch it as a movie, this new trailer gives the real-life family a chance to speak for the first time. If you’ll find a horror film more frightening knowing that it is based in reality, then this is definitely the trailer for you. Read More »

Insidious-Chapter-2 Wilson Simpkins

So we’re at this haunted hospital and James Wan says Insidious Chapter 2 will include time travel. It’s a mind-bending piece of information that potentially changes the whole nature of the upcoming sequel.

But taking a cue from that nugget, let’s jump ahead in time to today as a new teaser poster has been revealed for the horror sequel, which opens on Friday the 13th of September. The poster features a small child ominously in the middle of a room with the tagline “It Will Take What You Love Most.” Chilling.

Patrick Wilson, Barbara Hershey, Rose Byrne, Ty Simpkins and the rest of the cast return for Insidious Chapter 2, which picks up immediately where the 2010 hit left off. A trailer was released last week and, as part of that reveal, I was ushered to the haunted Linda Vista Community Hospital in Los Angeles to check it out. That’s where Wan talked about time travel and a few other pieces of information regarding the sequel. So check out the poster and read what he had to say below. Read More »

Insidious Chapter 2 Bed

Insidious Chapter 2 probably shouldn’t exist. It’s the sequel to a 2011 film starring Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne and Barbara Hershey that was made for $1.5 million. Released with zero expectations, the tiny little film exploded at the box office, grossing almost $60 million, a success ratio that puts it in firmly blockbuster range.

Now director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell have brought back the entire cast to pick up the pieces of their haunted house story with an inventive twist. The first Insidious was one of those movies that begs for conversation after. It created a story about people who could astrally project themselves into other worlds and, sometimes, bring back horrible things from a place called “the Further.” Ending on a crazy cliffhanger, fans have clamored for a sequel ever since, hoping to find out what was really happening in the first movie.

The first footage of that sequel, Insidious Chapter 2, is finally here in the form of its first trailer. Scheduled for release on September 13, the film picks up seconds after the original ended making Insidious Chapter 2 look just like the first movie, but with a decidedly bigger feel. Read More »

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