Sundance 2013 ended almost a month ago, but some of its films are still riding the wave of popularity that rose during the fest. The latest is In A World, the directorial debut of Lake Bell, which tells the hilarious story of a young woman breaking into the competitive world of movie trailer voice-overs. Roadside Attractions will distribute the film in the US and Sony will handle international markets. Read our review here.

Bell not only directed but wrote and stars in the film, along with Demetri Martin, Michaela Watkins, Nick Offerman and Tig Notaro. It won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the festival.  Read More »

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The typical image of  a “Sundance movie” often conjures up one of two things. A long, drawn-out burn with great characters, or the independently-financed comedy destined for box office glory. This post contains my thoughts on two 2013 films in the latter category.

In a World is the feature directorial debut of Lake Bell and it is a film about movie trailers. Seriously. Bell, who is best known for her roles in romantic comedies, not only directed, but wrote and also stars in this film about a woman who makes her way up in the world of Hollywood voice overs. It co-stars Dimitri Martin, Rob Corddry, Ken Marino, Tig Notaro, and Nick Offerman.

The Way, Way Back is also a directorial debut, for Oscar-winning screenwriters Nat Faxon and Jim Rash. Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Allison Janney, Sam Rockwell, AnnaSophia Robb, Maya Rudolph, Rob Corddry (again) and Amanda Peet all help tell the story of a young man coming of age over a summer at the beach.

Both films are incredibly funny, very sweet and worth your time. Read more after the jump. Read More »

Married couple Katie Aselton and Mark Duplass have worked together on a range of projects, including The Puffy Chair and The League, but their latest collaboration looks like a pretty sharp change of pace. Unfortunately for them, different doesn’t always mean better.

Directed by Aselton (The Freebie) from a script by Duplass, Black Rock centers around three women (Aselton, Kate Bosworth, and Lake Bell) on a camping trip on a remote island. They cross paths with a trio of war vets (Will BouvierJay Paulson, and Anslem Richardson) who happily take up the girls’ invitation to join their cozy party. After one sexual encounter takes a very nasty turn, however, the ladies find themselves running for their lives. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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I’m not sure who decreed that 2011 be the year of the R-rated-comedy-starring-Jason-Sudeikis, but here we are with a trailer for the third such project this year. A Good Old-Fashioned Orgy stars the SNL vet as Eric, a frat boy-ish 30something who lives to throw over-the-top parties at his dad’s Hamptons home. When Eric’s dad decides to sell the house, Eric decides he has to do something truly special for his last big blowout. (You can probably guess from the title what theme he eventually settles on.)

Leslie Bibb, Lake Bell, Michelle Borth, Nick Kroll, Tyler Labine, Angela Sarafyan, Lindsay Sloane, Martin Starr, Lucy Punch, and Will Forte co-star. Watch the trailer after the jump.

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Let’s hear it for film as the people’s medium! Katie Aselton, who made The Freebie, is directing and starring in a thriller called Black Rock, written by her husband, Mark Duplass (Baghead, Cyrus). The film is about “what happens when three childhood friends meet for a weekend getaway on an isolated island and discover that they have company.” The cast is pretty much set, and also includes Lake Bell, Kate Bosworth, Jay Paulson, Anslem Richardson and Will Bouvier. But this isn’t a big-budget deal; as the involvement of Mark Duplass would suggest, it’s a pretty small film that comes from a personal space. And it is looking for audience help to take the final step to creation. Read More »

The European Film Market is getting underway tomorrow in Berlin, and a big pre-emptive buy has been made by Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions, which partnered with Samuel Goldwyn Films to grab US rights for a Jason Sudeikis comedy called A Good Old Fashioned Orgy. Read More »

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

It’s that time again to present possible choices for a couple big roles in upcoming films. With Henry Cavill announced for Superman, naturally people are turning to speculation about other big roles in the film. Chief among them is Lois Lane, and there is a rumored shortlist of people who are in the running to play the intrepid reporter.

In addition, David O. Russell has mentioned a couple actresses that are of interest for the equally intrepid Elena in Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune. Read More »

Paramount Pictures has released a red band movie trailer for Ghostbusters/Meatballs director Ivan Reitman‘s new comedy No Strings Attached. The movie follows a lonely doctor who gets lucky with a pretty co-worker (played by Natalie Portman) in a “comedy about the complications of friends with benefits.” The film costars Ashton Kutcher, Greta Gerwig, Mindy Kaling, Olivia Thirlby, Kevin Kline, Lake Bell, Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges, and the next breakout comedy actor (in my opinion) Jake Johnson.

The film actually started out with another title, Fuckbuddies. Of course, Paramount didn’t want to face the problems associated with releasing a movie under that title, so they changed it to Friends With Benefits, which eventually got changed into the truly horrible title No Strings Attached (at least they didn’t go with “No Strings”, the abbreviated title they were testing). The reason they moved on from Friends With Benefits is that another film had already staked claim to the title Friends With Benefits. A day after Paramount released the first trailer for No Strings Attached, Screen Gems released a red band movie for their R-Rated romantic comedy starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis featuring a very similar premise. I thought that must be what makes them different — one is raunchy, and the other isn’t. Looks like I was wrong.

It seems like Paramount is following suit, and has released their own red band trailer. This is one of those red band trailers which is out to prove the movie isn’t just a cookie cutter comedy and is a filthy r-rated movie. So in other words, how many cuts of swears, nudity and sex can you fit into three minutes (not that that’s a bad thing…). Watch it now embedded after the jump.
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Paramount Pictures has released the first movie trailer for Ghostbusters/Meatballs director Ivan Reitman‘s new comedy No Strings Attached. The movie follows a lonely doctor (played by Cary Elwes) who gets lucky with a pretty co-worker (played by Natalie Portman) in a “comedy about the complications of friends with benefits.”

A guy and girl try to keep their relationship strictly physical, but it’s not long before they learn that they want something more.

The film costars Ashton Kutcher, Greta Gerwig, Mindy Kaling, Olivia Thirlby, Kevin Kline, Cary Elwes, Lake Bell, Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges, and the next breakout comedy actor (in my opinion) Jake Johnson. Watch it now embedded after the jump.
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