Diner Live Read Header

Usually when I go to a Live Read, I know the movie like the back of my hand. Ghostbusters, Pulp Fiction, The Usual Suspects, American Beauty, these are all movies I’ve seen dozens of times and know backwards and forwards. However, the November reading was a film I’d never seen until this week: Barry Levinson‘s Diner. It totally deserves to be mentioned among those films, but it somehow fell through the cracks in my years as a film fan. It’s as timeless, funny and poignant as any movie I’ve ever seen.

Watching the film, I began to worry about the Live Read. Sure this was a movie with dynamic characters based on a razor sharp script, but Levinson’s film also created such a perfect atmosphere. The movie was 1959 Baltimore, from the weather to the locations, outfits and the music. Oh, the music. Diner is a jukebox full of awesome tunes and the Live Reads don’t play music during the read. Was it going to work out?

Presenter and director Jason Reitman had an answer for that. To make the script move at a clip worthy of its amazing original cast, and to make the audience forget there was no music or settings to enhance it, he’d need actors who are incredibly familiar with each other. Actors with an ability to deliver filthy dialogue very fast, have perfect chemistry, talk a ton of crap and dish about football. How about the cast of FXX’s The League?

Yes, almost the entire cast of The League read Barry Levinson’s Diner at latest Jason Reitman Live Read, presented Film Independent at LACMA. Below, read what the cast brought to the script and what the script revealed about itself.  Read More »

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new Jason Reitman movie

As it stands, Jason Reitman‘s career can be divided into two phases: Fox Searchlight and Paramount. His first two movies, Thank You For Smoking and Juno, were released by Fox Searchlight and the four since have all been at Paramount. For an upcoming project, the director of Up in the Air will transition back to the studio were it all started.

Reitman is now attached to a film called I Would Only Rob Banks for My Family, based on a magazine article about a seemingly normal Texas family who robs banks together. It’ll be adapted by High Fidelity author Nick Hornby and produced by Jason Reitman’s father, Ivan Reitman. Read more about the new Jason Reitman movie below. Read More »

Hobbit Battle Five Armies character posters

So many sequels, so little time. So let’s get to it. After the jump:

  • Channing Tatum isn’t so sure about 23 Jump Street
  • Magic Mike XXL could be in 3D (but probably won’t be)
  • Adam McKay is still planning to make Step Brothers 2
  • Producer Malek Akkad has a Halloween 3 update
  • Rumor has it Frank Grillo will lead Skyline 2
  • Jason Reitman offers a suggestion for Ghostbusters 3
  • See the Lorde-curated soundtrack list for Mockingjay
  • Billy Boyd will sing the final Hobbit credit song
  • Check out the new banner for Horrible Bosses 2

Read More »

American Beauty Header

It’s a shame only 600 people got to see Jason Reitman‘s Live Read of American Beauty on Thursday. If more people saw it, they’d be lining up to see Men, Women and Children this weekend. The cast proved they are wonderful together.

As the kickoff to the 4th season of Live Reads at LACMA, Reitman presented Alan Ball‘s Oscar-winning 1999 script. For all the roles, he chose actors from his latest film. (Which happens to open wide this weekend.) In the role of Lester Burnham, for which Kevin Spacey won an Oscar, Reitman cast Adam Sandler. The wife Carolyn, originally played by Annette Benning, was played by Rosemarie DeWitt. Their daughter Jane, originated by Thora Birch, was played by Kaitlyn Dever. Her best friend Angela, originated by Mena Suvari, was played by Olivia Crocicchia. Buddy the real estate king, first played by Peter Gallagher, was read by Phil LaMarr. Next door, the Colonel, played by Chris Cooper, was read by Dean Norris. DeWitt doubled as his wife (Allison Janney) and their son, the pot-dealer Ricky was Travis Tope. Wes Bentley originated the role.

With a script as good as Ball’s, an infant could read it and it would sound like poetry. What Reitman showcased with his latest cast is prove that good words are one thing, but chemistry and talent are something entirely different and wonderful. Below, read more about the American Beauty Live Read presented by Film Independent at LACMA. Read More »

New Men Women and Children trailer

In the new Jason Reitman film, Men Women & Children, technology really isn’t making our lives easier. Instead of bringing us together, social media, gaming, online dating and other tech advancements too often provide methods to emphasize our fears and insecurities, and all the other things that cause pain and drive us apart. In this new Men Women and Children trailer, we see a dazed young guy played by Ansel Elgort, the girl he’s interested in (Kaitlyn Dever), her tech-paranoid mom (Jennifer Garner) and a host of other characters who either can’t connect, or choose the worst possible ways in which to reach out through technology. Read More »

Men, Women & Children trailer
Jason Reitman‘s latest film Men, Women & Children has screened at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival, and we have compiled the tweets coming out of the first Press & Industry screening. Its a mix of mostly positive (18 people) but also negative (10 people), with some critics like Owen Gleiberman and Ed Douglas touting it as a complex return to form while others like Jeff Wells calling it “soulless” and Ben Lyons leaving the screening tweeting that the film made him “very, very angry…”. The public premiere happens at the Ryerson theatre tonight, and I expect we’ll see a more positive response from the non critic/industry audience.

Many didn’t respond to Reitman’s last film Labor Day, which I enjoyed – connecting with the coming of age stuff, which was filmed near my hometown and set in the period of my upbringing. But unlike Jason’s previous films, Labor Day didn’t have a lot to say about us. I’m excited for Men, Women & Children because it looks like its more in line with what I connected to in his previous films. You can read all of the compiled tweets and reviews after the jump.

Read More »

Jason Reitman's Men, Women & Children teaser poster

Its no secret, I’m a huge Jason Reitman fan. I’ve been following his career since his short films were released by Atom Films (remember that site?). His movies have dramatically changed my life, the amazing effect of powerful storytelling. I’m sadly not taking the trip to the Toronto International Film Festival this year, and will likely be missing the debut of his newest movie Men, Women & Children. The film, again, looks fantastic. I love how Reitman’s teaser trailers almost feel like their own short films/mood pieces, spotlighting characters, ideas and situations that resonate within all of us (you can watch the teaser trailer for Men, Women & Children here).

Jason’s teaser posters have also been some of the most artful marketing from big studios. Unfortunately it seems like the home video art and or theatrical one-sheet are more under the tight control of the marketing departments. The Men, Women & Children teaser poster is another great illustration. Hit the jump to check out the Men, Women & Children teaser poster.

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Men, Women & Children trailer

Because Paramount stuck Labor Day in the doldrums of January, we’re getting not one Jason Reitman movie this year but two. The second is Men, Women & Children, an ensemble piece about the way technology has changed the relationships between, well, men, women & children.

Adam Sandler, Ansel Elgort, Kaitlyn Dever, Judy Greer, Rosemarie DeWitt, Jennifer Garner, and Dennis Haysbert are among the faces who populate the small town where the action takes place. The first Men, Women & Children trailer has just hit, and you can watch it after the jump.

Read More »

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