Ian McKellen as Gandalf in "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey."

Guess who’s been hanging out in Middle-earth again! Also after the jump:

  • There will be three more Transporter movies
  • Sly Stallone wants The Raid stars for Expendables 3
  • “Fuck, yeah,” Guillermo del Toro says about having Pacific Rim 2 ideas
  • Details uncovered on Transformers 4‘s new robots
  • Who else has an Anchorman 2 cameo lined up?

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Scarlett Johansson in The Avnegers

She kicked ass in The Avengers, she’s kicking ass in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and soon Scarlett Johansson will continue her action star ways with one of the genre’s masters. Luc Besson (The Professional, The Fifth Element) has just cast Johansson in his upcoming film, Lucy. Besson wrote the script and will direct the film, which is about a woman forced to mule some kind of super-serum, gets infected by it and develops superhuman abilities. It’s kind of Crank meets the Hulk, with a woman at the center.  Read More »

A third Taken movie may not be in the cards, but those eager for another “older male star kicks ass” flick will not be left wanting. A couple of months back, Kevin Costner and McG were said to be circling a Luc Besson-produced thriller about a dying assassin tackling one last assignment, titled Three Days to Kill. Now it seems both are on board, which is especially exciting since a more detailed synopsis suggests there’s a little bit more to this movie than rote violence. More after the jump.

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For a while we had hopes that Kevin Costner would make his career comeback with an attention-grabbing turn in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained, until scheduling issues sadly forced him to turn down the gig. But no matter: It looks like Costner’s been keeping plenty busy getting back on top even without that part. He’s just coming off of an Emmy-nominated turn in the History Channel miniseries Hatfields & McCoys and has supporting role in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel due out next year.

Now he’s looking for his next move beyond that, and a couple of intriguing options have just popped up on the radar. Costner is reportedly being courted for Paramount’s Jack Ryan reboot, as well as the Luc Besson-produced Three Days to Kill. More details after the jump.

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The US marketing hasn’t really kicked into gear yet, but maybe you saw the first international trailer for Taken 2, which puts Liam Neeson in conflict with some guys who are pretty angry about all the stuff Neeson did when his daughter was kidnapped a while back. The old guy and his fam (Maggie Grace and Famke Janssen) are in Istanbul, where they’re targeted by the father (Rade Sherbedgia) of one of the guys Neeson killed in Taken.

This trailer gives away a big part of the plot setup that wasn’t shown in the last trailer. In fact, the last trailer deliberately obscured it. It’s something that we’ve known to some extent for a while, and something that will end up in the US trailers eventually, so I wouldn’t call it a big spoiler. But if all you know of Taken 2 is what was in the last trailer, then this will have a small surprise. Check out the trailer below. Read More »

Luc Besson is really gluing his ass to the director’s chair. Though he directed a good handful of movies since 2000 (Angel-A, three Arthur and the Invisibles films, The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-sec, and The Lady) his directorial output has seemed to take a back seat to writing and producing efforts. (Admittedly, that could be an inaccurate perception based on those films’ presence in North America; in Europe, it may not seem as if Besson had any lull at all.)

Regardless, Besson now has three big directorial projects lined up. One is an action thriller in which Angelina Jolie will star; that will shoot in early 2013 after Maleficent is done. Another is an adaptation of the late ’60s French comic series Valerian, which Besson will write and direct.

And then there is Malavita, the “darkly comedic crime thriller” that already has been set to star Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer, and which just added Tommy Lee Jones. Read More »

Lockout doesn’t boast the most original premise in the world — it’s perfectly obvious why it’s drawn comparisons to both Taken and Escape From New York — but there’s at least one good reason to keep an eye out for this film, and that’s star Guy Pearce. The reliably compelling Aussie actor plays up his badass/smartass side as Agent Snow, a former government agent who’s wrongly been convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage. He’s offered a chance to go free, if he can save the president’s daughter (Maggie Grace) from violent inmates at a maximum security prison… in space!

FilmDistrict has released the first five minutes of the movie, which see Pearce getting pummeled quite a bit for making cheeky remarks instead of explaining what happened in that hotel room, before showing us what really did happen in that hotel room. Watch it after the jump.

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The movie Lockout, in which Guy Pearce plays a Snake Plissken-like character charged with rescuing a bigwig’s daughter (Maggie Grace) from a satellite prison, came almost out of nowhere last year. We knew the film was coming together, but then the first clips of footage suggested that it aspires to be more fun, cheeky and Escape From New York-like than we’d expected. Response to the early footage was strong.

At WonderCon this weekend, a five-minute clip was shown to audiences, and that clip is now online. It covers a lot of ground, from a desperate fight scene/setpiece to Pearce administering one of the most stomach-churning emergency medical procedures we’re likely to see in a film this spring. Read More »

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