Made in America trailer

Ron Howard looks to Jay-Z and other performers to find the power of music in Made in America. The documentary (no relation to the Ted Danson/Whoopi Goldberg movie of the same name) finds Howard looking at the creation and execution of Jay-Z’s Made in America festival, which took place last year in Philadelphia. Not only does Howard spend time pointing a camera at the people organizing the fest, he shoots most of the performers, which included Jay Z (of course), Miike Snow, Janelle Monáe, Pearl Jam, Run-D.M.C., Santigold, Skrillex, Kanye West, D’Angelo, Dirty Projectors, and The Hives.

And so we get moments such as the bit when the organizers talk about how Skrillex has to perform from inside his spaceship, and then we see Skrillex in his spaceship. That’s cinema, folks. The film premiered at TIFF last year and aired on Showtime not long afterwards, but has been picked up for theatrical distribution in the US this year. Watch the Made in America trailer below.  Read More »

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Made In America Howard Jay Z

Last summer two of the most powerful men in show business teamed up to make a movie. That unlikely duo was Shawn Carter, better known to most as rap mogul Jay-Z, and Opie, better known to most as legendary director Ron Howard. The result is called Made in America, and will premiere at the Toronto Film Festival next month before airing on Showtime October 11. Check out the trailer below. Read More »

Quvenzhané Wallis Confirmed for ‘Annie’

Quvenzhané Wallis went home empty-handed from last night’s Oscars, but here’s some good news for her. The Beasts of the Southern Wild star has just been confirmed for the title role in Annie, weeks after we learned that she was in the mix.

Though Wallis is the first confirmed actor, Sony’s remake of the classic musical already has some notable talent behind the scenes. Will Gluck (Easy A) is directing from a script written by Emma Thompson and rewritten by Aline Brosh McKenna, with Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Jay-Z producing. Hit the jump to keep reading.

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David Fincher hasn’t quite settled on his next film yet, but in the meantime he’s keeping busy with other types of projects. He directed the first two episodes of Netflix’s original series House of Cards, and produced the Halo 4 commercial we saw last fall. His latest non-cinematic effort is the music video for “Suit & Tie,” the latest pop single by his The Social Network star Justin Timberlake. Watch it after the jump.

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At 9 years old, Quvenzhané Wallis already has the kind of career many actresses would kill for. Her very first starring turn, in Beasts of the Southern Wild, netted her a Best Actress Oscar nomination, making her the youngest-ever contender in the category. Her next film, Twelve Years a Slave, puts her among a star-studded cast under renowned director Steve McQueen. Now she’s in the mix for the iconic title role in Annie, Sony’s remake of the beloved Broadway musical. Hit the jump to keep reading.

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After making three movies in three years (2009′s Fired Up!, 2010′s Easy A, and 2011′s Friends With Benefits), filmmaker Will Gluck has spent the past couple of years weighing his options for his next project. At various points, he’s circled the heist flick Sex on the Moon, the action comedy Secretaries Day, the true crime caper Skyjack, and a reunion with his Easy A star Emma Stone. Now he’s in talks for yet another new directing gig, the Will Smith and Jay-Z-produced modern-day remake of Annie.

As Gluck comes aboard, however, one of the project’s longest attached talents has decided to depart. Smith’s daughter Willow Smith, for whom the film was being developed as a starring vehicle, will no longer be playing the lead. More details after the jump.

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Ron Howard is taking a break from his racing film Rush to follow Jay-Z as he creates a music festival. The rapper/producer is one of the minds behind the Made In America music festival, taking place September 1-2 in Philadelphia, PA and Howard, along with producing partner Brian Grazer, are filming the process for an upcoming documentary. Made in America features acts like Jay himself, Pearl Jam, Skrillex, The Hives, Drake, Jill Scott, D’Angelo and Afrojack but the film will be ”born through Jay-Z’s perspective … how he puts the event together,” according to Grazer. Read more after the jump. Read More »

Emma Thompson May Write Sony’s ‘Annie’ Remake

One of Will Smith‘s kids has his own remake franchise brewing (Jaden, and The Karate Kid) so now the erstwhile Fresh Prince is working on balancing his family dynamics by crafting a similar film for daughter Willow. The property in question this time is Annie, in which Willow Smith will play the moppet adopted by Oliver ‘Daddy’ Warbucks. In this version, there will probably be some dancing to pop tunes crafted by Jay-Z, who is also producing, and possibly at least a small touch of Nanny McPhee. Wait, what?

Emma Thompson, who scripted both Nanny McPhee films (as well as the ’95 Sense and Sensibility) is being courted by Will Smith and Overbrook Productions to write the new Annie remake. Read More »

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