Maybe when we first heard about the possibility of a third Bill & Ted, it sounded like an outlandish idea. As Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves have continued to offer little updates, however — and as more and more ’80s and ’90s properties have found their way to the big screen — it’s started to seem more and more plausible. And now the project’s taken one more big step forward, with Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest) just hired to direct. More details after the jump.

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There are some great outtake clips online this week from Keanu Reeves‘ documentary Side by Side, which looks at the division between shooting film and digital. The outtakes go a little further afield from that topic, however, and one of the best is an interview with Andy and Lana Wachowski — and primarily with Lana — talking about how “performance” is created in the editing room.

This is a good little primer on one aspect of filmmaking that may people easily overlook, and worth watching for that reason alone. Wachowski fans will also be interested to see this as it is one of the very few video interviews with the directors. They seem to be more willing to talk to the camera lately; we’ve had two videos with them in the past month, which is more than in the previous decade. By the time their new film Cloud Atlas hits (co-written and co-directed with Tom Tykwer) they’ll be hosting their own reality show. I’d watch that. Read More »

A couple decades ago, and even today, the best way to shoot a complex martial-arts fight scene is the simplest: get good stuntmen, choreograph the hell out of the scene, and then set the camera back in such a way that it really captures their work, with the longest takes that make sense. Jackie Chan and some other classic Hong Kong filmmakers were great at this — their fights had power because the people had power, and the camera caught it.

Now we see a lot of quick editing, severe close-ups and takes stitched together with CGI. Which is fine, but doesn’t tend to have the same impact.

Keanu Reeves is now shooting his directorial debut Man of Tai Chi, and for some of the fights he’s using an advanced motion-control camera to blend classic technique with the sort of untethered, flying camera that audiences are used to seeing. Check out a video below. Read More »

We haven’t seen much so far from 47 Ronin, the film that Carl Erik Rinch directed with Keanu Reeves, as a semi-remake of a story that has been filmed in Japan several times. We know the movie also features Hiroyuki Sanada, Kou Shibasaki, Tadanobu Asano and Rinko Kikuchi, and we know that it is an effects-heavy 3D affair. In fact, the release was just pushed back a couple months, reportedly so more work can be done on the final effects renders.

Yesterday Jeff Snider from Variety tweeted about info on a test screening of the film, but along with that he shot out a low-res image of a poster for the film. The banded image features four character portraits, with text labels Outsider, Demon, Witch and Savage. All combined, that contributes to our understanding that this take on the story is fairly different from previously filmed versions.

Check out the small poster image below. Read More »

Once slated for mid-November this year, the new 3D version of the classic samurai story 47 Ronin will have to wait for February 2013 to play for audiences. Universal has pushed the film back to February 8, 2013, without citing any specific reason. (As is usually the case with date changes.) The new opening date places it against the Nicholas Sparks film Safe Haven, and a week before A Good Day to Die Hard. Read More »

Everything old is new again in today’s Sequel Bits, which looks to the ’90s, the ’80s, and even the 19th century for inspiration. After the jump:

  • Transformers 4 auctions off a walk-on role
  • Bill & Ted 3 has a script, but no green light
  • Men in Black 3 implores you to share your alien encounters
  • Journey 3¬†gets fast-tracked for 2014
  • Michael Bacall’s working on 21 Jump Street 2

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The technology used to make films has been changing at a rapid pace for the past twenty years. Digital video has gone from being an upstart media to a primary means for creating movies. Major companies are no longer producing new film cameras. Native 3D requires shooting on digital, but the popularity of IMAX keeps some film purists going. Companies like Kodak are experiencing tougher times than ever.

Side by Side is a documentary directed by Chris Kenneally in which Keanu Reeves (who also produced) talks about film and video with a wide variety of filmmakers, including Steven Soderbergh, James Cameron, David Lynch, Richard Linklater, Martin Scorsese, Andy & Lana Wachowski, Christopher Nolan, Walter Pfister, David Fincher and many, many more.

See a trailer below. Read More »

For some time, Keanu Reeves has been talking about directing and acting in a film called Man of Tai Chi.

Now he has funding set up for the movie, thanks to money committed by Village Roadshow Pictures Asia, China Film Group, Wanda Media and Universal, which will distribute in the US. As he has said before, the film will shoot in Beijing, Hong Kong and Macau, with dialogue in Mandarin and English, and martial artist and actor Tiger Chen will star. Read More »

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