If all the Marvel, Lucasfilm, Pixar, animation and theme park coverage weren’t hints enough, we here at /Film are Disney fans. Big time. So a film like Saving Mr. Banks, which is about Walt Disney’s struggle to make one of the studio’s greatest films, Mary Poppins, is right in our wheelhouse. The film opens December 20 and will play the AFI Fest presented by Audi this weekend. Peter Sciretta and I were lucky enough not only to see the film before that festival date, but to see it at the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, CA, where about 45% of the movie was shot and actually took place.
So while this film, which stars Emma Thompson, Tom Hanks, Colin Farrell, Paul Giamatti, Bradley Whitford, BJ Novak and Jason Schwartzman, might not seem like the typical film for us to do a video blog for, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to give our opinion of a Disney film which the Walt Disney Company made in the place Walt Disney actually had these experiences. Read More »
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Disney has three big films coming out this holiday season, but only one is about the company itself. That’s Saving Mr. Banks, the true story of Walt Disney’s courting of author P.L. Travers for the rights to her book, Mary Poppins. Directed by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side), the film features Tom Hanks as Disney and Emma Thompson as Travers. It opens December 13 in the U.S. but had its world premiere this weekend at the London Film Festival.
So how is it? The first reviews are out and while everyone seems to agree there’s plenty of Disney magic, and some people even smell Oscars, a few don’t necessarily think it works. Read a bunch of reviews below. Read More »
Posted on Thursday, October 10th, 2013 by Angie Han
Saving Mr. Banks helmer John Lee Hancock is going to help rescue another iconic Disney character. Hancock has been brought in to assist first-time director Robert Stromberg in shooting new scenes for Maleficent, intended to strengthen the opening of the film.
While it’s not uncommon for big-budget studio productions like this one to go in for reshoots, it is a bit unusual for a studio to bring in another director to help film new material. Hit the jump for the latest updates on the project.
Update: The header image is now the new logo for Malificent which was found via a Spanish blog.
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Posted on Saturday, August 10th, 2013 by Angie Han
Saturday’s live-action panel at D23 closed with the studio’s big awards-season hopeful, the making-of drama Saving Mr. Banks. Directed by John Lee Hancock from a Black List script by Kelly Marcel, the drama depicts Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) in his years-long effort to convince author P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) to fork over the rights to her Marry Poppins books.
We’ve already seen bits of footage from the film thanks to the trailer, but three new scenes were shown at the event. Hit the jump to read all about them.
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Posted on Thursday, July 11th, 2013 by Angie Han
There’s a certain kind of stress that comes with watching a favorite book get adapted into movies, and I can only imagine that the process must be even more nerve-wracking for the authors of those books. It can’t be easy for them to see their work chopped up and rearranged, or to find that what soars on the page drops with a thud on the screen.
In Saving Mr. Banks, writer P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson) tries to save herself that grief by refusing to hand over the film rights to her Mary Poppins books. But Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) doesn’t give up easily, and, well, if you’ve ever tried to wrap your mouth around the nonsense word “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” you can probably guess how that goes. Watch the first trailer for the fact-based drama after the jump.
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When filming a major Hollywood movie at one of the busiest locations on the planet, a photo or two is bound to leak out. That’s just happened with Saving Mr. Banks. Tom Hanks, who plays Walt Disney in the film, has been spotted in character during filming at Disneyland in Anaheim, California. The film, which will be released December 20, 2013, tells the story of Disney’s 14-year effort to convince Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers to turn over the rights to her book. Emma Thompson plays Travers, and she’s been spotted by photographers, too.
Directed by John Lee Hancock, Saving Mr. Banks co-stars Colin Farrell, Paul Giamatti, Bradley Whitford and Jason Schwartzman. After the jump, see several images of Hanks, Thompson and the filming and read some of Hanks’ thoughts on the Disney character. Read More »
Posted on Wednesday, April 11th, 2012 by Angie Han
For about ten years from the mid-’90s to the mid-’00s, author John Grisham was a ubiquitous presence in Hollywood. 1993 saw the releases of The Firm and The Client, both based on bestselling Grisham books, and adaptations like A Time to Kill, The Rainmaker, and Runaway Jury soon followed. In recent years, however, his popularity has waned. Aside from the new NBC series The Firm, which debuted in January, it’s been about eight years since we’ve seen any of Grisham’s novels come to life.
But legal thrillers have never completely gone out of fashion, and Grisham could be heading back to the big screen again soon with the help of Mark Wahlberg. The Fighter star is in early talks for The Partner, based on Grisham’s book of the same title. More details after the jump.
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Posted on Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 by Angie Han
The way Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks is shaping up, we might as well pencil it in now for the 2014 Oscar race. Based on true events, Kelly Marcel‘s 2011 Black List script centers around company founder’s Walt Disney‘s 14-year effort to convince Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers to turn over the rights to her book. Since the early days, the project’s sought big names, with Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep said to be among the top choices to play the leads and The Blind Side helmer John Lee Hancock boarding the picture in late February. Now casting has begun in earnest, with Hanks in talks to play Walt Disney and Emma Thompson negotiating for the role of Travers.
So to recap: Bittersweet real-life drama, check. Best Picture-nominated director, check. Oscar-kissed stars, working on a double check. Yep, Saving Mr. Banks wants badly to be an awards contender, all right. More details after the jump.
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