Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor (featured right to left above, respectively) first made a name for themselves in 2006 with their adrenaline-rush of an indie action flick, the low-budget Crank. Three years later, they solidified their reputation as unstoppable forces of pure insanity with its sequel, Crank: High Voltage. Today though, they bring us their first non-Crank-related directorial effort, the Gerard Butler vehicle Gamer, which also co-stars Dexter‘s Michael C. Hall.
I had a chance to chat with Neveldine/Taylor (as they’re so often credited in their films) a couple of months back at Comic-Con, which they were at to promote their latest helping of blood-splattered delirium.
You can read the full exclusive interview with Neveldine and Taylor after the jump.
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Lionsgate has premiered the official U.S. trailer for Gamer on XBox Live (is this the first movie to ever premiere a trailer on a video game console? Possibly) The trailer has found its way online. Gamer (previously titled Game) is the new film from Crank madmen, Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor.
The story takes us to the sci-fi future world where prisoners do battle in a real life video game. A test screening was held in October, and you can read our Early Buzz report for the full scoop. It looks like a fun crazy-concept sci-fi film from the 1980’s. Watch the trailer embedded after the jump, remember to hit the HQ button to see high quality video, and leave your thoughts in the comments below.
[Dave’s note: I believe the song used in the trailer is Marilyn Manson’s cover of “Sweet Dreams,” a song originally made popular by Eurythmics. Not the first song I would think of to use, but I think it’s employed to great effect!]
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Once upon a time this film was simply called Game, which sounded too much like The Game. Then in it became Citizen Game, too close perhaps to Citizen Kane (ahem) but now it has been retitled again and, hopefully, for the last time.
Neveldine/Taylor’s next action adventure smash ’em up is now going to be called Gamer. Unless, of course, somebody decides that title sounds too much like Gamers or Gamerz, those twin terrors of post-Clerks RPG nerd dramedy.
See the new poster after the jump.
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I’m afraid that telling you “If you liked Crank, you’ll like Crank 2” just wouldn’t be good enough. It also wouldn’t necessarily be true. Most of all, it would be somewhat rude – discounting an entire film as nothing more than an echo, or an indulgence for the cult of its predecessor.
The end of the first film seemed to quite clearly rule out any possibility of a sequel and one of the most telling characteristics of Crank: High Voltage is simply that it exists. This is a film that disregards anything like the basic narrative logic of a ‘dead’ character staying dead because the realities of dying are rooted in the rigid actualities of biology, chemistry and physics. These are three things that the film has absolutely no use for. But it does make great play with non-rigid and non-actual cartoon versions of all the above. When the film is at its best, it verges on Tex Avery, and Jason Statham is Screwy Squirrel given permission to cause suffering, pain and offence.
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Last year we told you that Crank directors Neveldine/Taylor had decided to film Crank 2: High Voltage entirely using consumer grade video cameras, allowing them to put the cameras in places filmmakers normally aren’t able to. They also had plans to shoot some sequences using a “moving bullet time camera rig” composed of 8 small video cameras attached to a curved light weight piece of speed rail.
Collider has edited together some of the studio-released B-roll footage, which you can watch for yourself after the jump, showing the madmen at work, strapping little consumer grade cameras to remote control cars and using the custom built “moving bullet time camera rig”. I can’t even imagine what the end result will look like.
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An Italian movie trailer for Game has shown up online. The new movie from Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor – the madmen that brought us Crank takes us to the sci-fi future world where prisoners do battle in a real life video game. The trailer looks pretty insane, gritty action mixed with sci-fi futuristic tech overlays. And the sci-fi concept is the kind of impossible crazy that could lend it self to a kick ass action flick. And you have to love the use of Marilyn Manson’s cover of the 1983 Eurythmics hit “Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)”. Aparently the trailer originated from JoBlo, but I cant seem to find it on their site. Watch the trailer after the jump and let me know what you think in the comments below.
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I’ll be perfectly honest, the only reason I was ever interested in Warner Bros’ big screen adaptation of Jonah Hex, was the involvement of filmmakers Neveldine/Taylor, the insane directing team behind Crank. Variety reports that Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor have decided to leave the project because of “creative differences” with the movie studio over the direction of the comic book adaptation.
So what now? Warner Bros is quickly trying to find a replacement, as potential star Josh Brolin currently has time in his schedule for a Spring 2009 start. If Warner Bros isn’t able to find someone up to the task soon, this sounds like one of those projects that could easily fall into development heck.
Jonah Hex is a former alcoholic and confederate soldier turned supernatural loner and gunslinger. The comic book was introduced in the 1970’s, created by writer John Albano and artist Tony DeZuniga, the character received his signature scar at the hands of Indians who placed a hot tomahawk to his face. His mother was a prostitute and his dad sold him into slavery.
Discuss: Do you still want to see a Jonah Hex movie? And if so, who would you like to see direct?
Last month the Jeff Wells reported that Josh Brolin was in talks to star in Neveldine/Taylor’s big screen adaptation of Jonah Hex. Apparently it isn’t a done deal yet. We hoped to talk to Brolin about the film while he was in town for the premiere of Milk, but our roundtable interview was instantly transformed into a press conference, and the opportunity disappeared.
Thankfully our friends at Collider was able to talk to Josh about the project at the Los Angeles press day, and frankly, it doesn’t sound good. When first asked if he was going to star in Jonah Hex, Brolin quickly replied “Nope.” That “nope” changed to a “don’t know yet”, and Brolin admitted that he hasn’t even met with directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor. Brolin commented on how he has a lot of choices, including an unnamed film by Tony Scott which he really wants to do, but he is having a tough time deciding.
“I think Jonah Hex is a really, really interesting story. I think it would be risky also, which I like, and I don’t know if it’s the thing to do,” Brolin said, later adding that “[Neveldine and Taylor] are good people. They’re very good people.”
Neveldine and Taylor have said that they hope to begin production in March 2009, and that’s only a few months away. Hey, there’s always Thomas Jane.
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Lakeshore Entertainment held a test screening of Game last week in Southern California. Game is the latest film from Neveldine/Taylor, the mad men behind Crank. It stars Gerard Butler, as a prisoner who is implanted with nano-technology which allows a video gamer to control him in a first-person shooter-like game called Slayers. A bunch of reviews have leaked out across the interwebs. Lets take a look at the early buzz:
Collider: “if you want action, Game has it. It had some of the most entertaining and unique actions scenes I’ve seen in a while, and that’s coming from an ex-gamer. In addition to adding in some digitalized pixilation, we could see an on-screen pop up display for Kable that looked like a cross between Tony Stark’s HUD in Iron Man and Call of Duty. I found this exhilarating to watch, because it seemed like Neveldine and Taylor finally broke the bounds of the typical action scenes I’ve seen coming out of Hollywood so often. They might even rival Michael Bay for explosions!” … “While the action scenes were great, Game really felt a bit too long, like some unnecessary scenes out in the real world could be cut and it could be tightened down into a true non-stop action flick like Crank.”
Red User: “The film all around got an excellent response from the crowd. Most of them when asked by a showing of hands rated it as excellent. I especially liked the realism and pacing. The soundtrack also was rockin’ and there was plenty of well choreographed fight and stunt scenes. I don’t want to give anything away, but the game play action sequences were just outstanding.” “I’ll just say that this movie is going to blow people away. The cinematic choices were brilliant and covered a broad spectrum of looks for scenes of all types, from brutal action packed battle and fight scenes to original environments within the game world to the elegant mansion of the evil rich mastermind. There were super saturated looks, harsh gritty looks, and all styles of shooting.”
Aint It Cool: “this movie was beyond boring and the action was completely unexciting.” … “it’s trying sooo hard to be exciting and fresh and appeal to “gamers” – its cuts from dark to computer screens to action to more computer screens to close-ups – its unexcusable.” … “GAME takes itself way too seriously. In fact the movie is filled with these super bizarre dark scenes with sweaty obese gamers, controlling real life hot women who strip, touch themselves and pee in public.”
LonelyReviewer: “Judging by the audience reaction, this film is not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. That’s because it’s more like a cup of red bull and vodka. After an early onslaught of extreme violence and orgiastic debauchery, those looking for a typical action flick headed for the hills. Those who remained (95%), were treated to a mixture of grit and flash that dazzled its way into becoming an original and captivating genre pic.” … “The look of this film is consistently visually entertaining. ” … “This film isn’t perfect. The antagonist is somewhat absent when he should be raining down hard on our hero. Some viewers might also yearn for a greater emotional arc and less exposition.” … “Unlike other gaming films (such as Halo), “Game” doesn’t pander to the gaming audience. Instead, “Game” concentrates on being a top notch action film that happens to be about gaming. In doing so, the film winds up being the most accurate incarnation of gaming that the film world has seen.”
Jeffrey Wells is reporting that Josh Brolin (No Country For Old Men) has signed on to star in the big screen adaptation of DC Comic’s Jonah Hex.
Directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, the mad men behind Crank, Jonah Hex is a former alcoholic and confederate soldier turned supernatural loner and gunslinger. The comic book was introduced in the 1970’s, created by writer John Albano and artist Tony DeZuniga, the character received his signature scar at the hands of Indians who placed a hot tomahawk to his face. His mother was a prostitute and his dad sold him into slavery.
Neveldine/Taylor have said that they don’t plan on “making a straight-ahead Western but plan to develop the character with some of the supernatural overtones in the hopes of creating a franchise.” Wells insists that a deal was signed last night, but Brolin’s reps are in full denial mode. If true this would be a huge score for the western comic book property. Brolin’s performance in Oliver Stone’s W. is already getting award buzz. Last I heard, Neveldine/Taylor were planning to begin shooting in March 2009 in either Louisiana, Georgia or Arizona.
Discuss: What do you think about Josh Brolin as Jonah Hex?