20th Century Fox has finally released the first photos from Taken 2. Director Olivier Megaton‘s (Colombiana, Transporter 3) follow-up takes a twist on the original as Maggie Grace must help rescue Liam Neeson‘s character Bryan Mills after “associates of the villains he killed the first time around decide to get their revenge.” I saw some early footage at CinemaCon and it looked much better than it sounds (for example, Grace’s character isn’t turned into a complete badass Sarah Conner-type, and fun is had with her inabilities). Hit the jump to check out the first photos from the action sequel, along with a quote from Neeson.
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Posted on Monday, April 23rd, 2012 by Russ Fischer
Here’s a pretty minor update on Darren Aronofsky‘s Noah. Just as we get word that The Wolverine, the film Aronofsky was previously set to direct, will shoot in Australia rather than Japan, we’ve now got basic details on the locations for Noah. The movie, which tells a version of the biblical tale of Noah and his mission to preserve humans and animals against God’s cleansing flood, will have location work done in Iceland and New York, with studio work likely done in the latter.
We’ve seen Iceland used as a location recently for projects like Prometheus, Batman Begins and Game of Thrones, and the country is certainly wonderful for providing a landscape that looks beautiful and slightly alien. Cross reference some of the photos linked there with the art seen in the graphic novel version of Noah and you’ll quickly see the appeal of Iceland as a location.
A press release went out yesterday announcing the finalization of deals to have Russell Crowe star in the film, but there is no other cast mentioned. Liam Neeson has been rumored for months, but we’ll have to wait for more casting news. You can read that press release below. Read More »
‘Battleship’ Featurette Explains Goldilocks Planets and Why It’s a Bad Idea to Reach Out to Alien Life
Posted on Thursday, March 22nd, 2012 by Angie Han
Earlier this week at WonderCon, director Peter Berg revealed that he’d taken inspiration for his new movie Battleship from an unlikely source: Stephen Hawking. Berg had been watching a documentary in which the iconic scientist discussed Goldilocks planets, so called because their distance from the sun is “just right” for sustaining life. NASA has been trying to send signals to those planets in an attempt to discover extra-terrestial intelligence, but according to Berg, Hawking believes this to be a terrible idea because aliens knowing of our existence can do just as much damage as good. Berg then spun that idea into the plot of the film.
Which sounds pretty interesting, but unfortunately, most of the trailers we’ve seen so far haven’t gone into much detail about the sci-fi storyline. So far, they’ve shown us who the characters are and what it looks like when Berg tries his best to be Michael Bay, but we’ve had no sense of what exactly the aliens are doing here. Now a new featurette focuses on just that, explaining what exactly a Goldilocks planet is and how the crew of the USS John Paul Jones find themselves to be defending our planet from vicious otherworldly visitors. Watch it after the jump.
Posted on Tuesday, March 13th, 2012 by Angie Han
Taylor Kitsch‘s John Carter may not quite have been the blockbuster hit that he and Disney were hoping for, but the star will take a second stab at leading a major action franchise when Peter Berg‘s Battleship hits this summer. Inspired by the Hasbro game, the film stars Kitsch, Alexander Skarsgard, Rihanna, and Liam Neeson as naval officers dealing with an otherwordly force that threatens to destroy our planet. The new trailer downplays the plotlines and character moments we glimpsed in earlier trailers, choosing instead to dive right in to expensive, explosive Transformers-style action. Watch it after the jump.
Posted on Wednesday, March 7th, 2012 by Peter Sciretta
Last month I received a cryptic e-mail inviting me to a private screening of a new Star Wars film edited by Topher Grace — which is funny because I had no idea there was a new Star Wars film in the works, with or without Grace’s involvement. I was told the screening was a secret private event arranged only for friends only and was asked not to talk about it beforehand. The event was held somewhere in the Hollywood area in a a screening room filled with filmmakers, editors, actors, actresses and only a few press friends. I was told I could blog about it afterwards if I wanted, so here goes…
For those of you who don’t know, Topher Grace is a film geek. He loves the Star Wars films, the Back to the Future movies and all the same signature titles of any film geek who grew up in the 1980s. He recently became interested in the editing process and wanted to learn more about the art form. Instead of cutting a short film, he wanted to use something he was more familiar with.
His idea was to edit the Star Wars prequels into one movie, as they would provide him a lot of footage to work with. He used footage from all three prequels, a couple cuts from the original trilogy, some music from The Clone Wars television series, and even a dialogue bit from Anthony Daniels’ (C-3PO) audio book recordings. He even created a new opening text crawl to set up his version of the story.
The result is an 85-minute movie titled Star Wars: Episode III.5: The Editor Strikes Back. It should be noted that the Star Wars prequel trilogy is almost 7 hours in total length, and the shortest film (Episode 1) is more than 51 minutes longer than Grace’s fan cut. What this means is a lot of footage ended up on the editing room floor, and a lot of creative choices were made in the editing process. And the result? Topher Grace’s Star Wars film is probably the best possible edit of the Star Wars prequels given the footage released and available.
Whats most shocking is that with only 85 minutes of footage, Topher was able to completely tell the main narrative of Anakin Skywalker’s road from Jedi to the Sith. While I know the missing pieces and could even fill in the blanks in my head as the film raced past, none of those points were really needed. Whats better is that the character motivations are even more clear and identifiable, a real character arc not bogged down by podraces, galactic senates, Jar Jar Binks, politics or most of the needless parts of the Star Wars prequels. It not only clarifies the story, but makes the film a lot more action-packed.
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Posted on Tuesday, February 28th, 2012 by Russ Fischer
Briefly: After years and years of thinking about the movie and prepping ideas for the project, Darren Aronofsky is finally going to get his chance to re-tell the story of Noah, the Ark and the Flood. Aronofsky is now in talks with Russell Crowe to have the actor play the title role in Noah when the film shoots starting in July. Read More »
Posted on Thursday, February 23rd, 2012 by Russ Fischer
I’ll say this for Jonathan Liebesman‘s Clash of the Titans sequel Wrath of the Titans: the movie really doesn’t look to skimp on the creatures and mythical monsters. Not only that, but it gives the returning Sam Worthington a haircut that is really worthy of the legacy of Harry Hamlin’s style from the 1981 Clash of the Titans. (Not sure that’s a good thing, actually.)
Anyway, the sequel has Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes reprising their roles as Zeus and Hades, and adds Toby Kebbell and Rosamund Pike, both of whom get a couple good shots in this new trailer. But most of what this new look affers is monsters, monsters, monsters. Which is a big part of what we really need from a movie like this, after all. Check it out below. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, February 14th, 2012 by Germain Lussier
Lots of sequel news today so let’s get right to it. After the jump, read about the following:
- Shawn Levy gives an update on a sequel to Real Steel.
- There’s already been talk of a third Ghost Rider according to directors Neveldine and Taylor, who are also still considering Crank 3D.
- Latino Review has revealed some major plot points in Taken 2.
- Fox is still moving ahead with a Waiting to Exhale sequel after the death of Whitney Houston.
- Steven Spielberg says Peter Jackson will be starting production on The Adventures of Tintin 2 this year.