“This is the best bad idea we have, sir, by far.”

Here’s the trailer for Argo, Ben Affleck‘s third film as director. The film follows the efforts of an operation to rescue six diplomats hiding in Tehran during the Iranian revolution in 1979.  The trailer begins in serious political thriller mode before the real plan is revealed and it moves into an Oceans Eleven tone for a moment. But it swings back as the real importance of the mission becomes clear.

This trailer demonstrates that the material could really put Affleck to the test as he has to balance a tricky combination of tones and situations. But his cast is excellent:  Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, Zeljko Ivanek, Richard Kind, Scoot McNairy, Chris Messina, Michael Parks, Kerry BisheKyle Chandler, Tate Donovan, Clea DuVall, Victor Garber, and Taylor Schilling. The footage looks great, and keeps this locked as one of our most anticipated movies of the year. Check out the trailer below. Read More »

Warner Bros has sent out the obligatory press release to announce the commencement of filming on Ben Affleck‘s third film as director, Argo. We’ve known most of the cast for a while: Affleck, Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston, and John Goodman, with more recent additions Kyle Chandler, Tate Donovan, Rory Cochrane and Taylor Schilling.

Now we’ve got an official synopsis for the film, which adapts the true story of a CIA team that posed as a film crew in order to extract diplomats from Tehran in 1979. But perhaps of more interest to some who already know the story is the confirmation of cast additions that include the great Michael Parks (above), as well as Clea Duvall and Richard Kind. Read More »

Love him or hate him, Kevin Smith has can now hang his own “Mission Accomplished” banner. He’s taken his tiny little horror film Red State, premiered it at Sundance, decided to self-distribute it, taken it on the road and now, officially, turned a profit without spending a dime on marketing. The film, which cost $5 million to make, saved $1 million from California state tax incentives, making the total investment $4 million. It then grossed about $1 million on the first leg of the tour, took in $1.5 million from a handful of foreign sales and is about to close a $3 million domestic distribution deal to release the film every way but theatrical. Do the math and Smith’s little experiment is now officially in the black, and it’s still six months away from theatrical distribution with another tour in the works.

Plus, if that wasn’t good enough news for Smith, friend and muse Quentin Tarantino recently screened Red State and loved it. Read why that was a big deal to the filmmaker and more after the break. Read More »

Kevin Smith’s new film Red State is more than just a departure from his trademark comedic style. It’s almost a complete 180. The bright colors and pop culture references have been replaced with blacks, reds and long monologues about scripture. Smith’s still very reliant on the spoken word – almost to a fault – but now he balances it with machine guns, blood and hand held camera moves. This is a maturing, confident Smith who proves, after Cop Out, he still has a unique voice. With Red State, that voice isn’t saying anything incredibly groundbreaking, and at times it gets a tad preachy, but the director has expanded out of his comfort zone and given audiences a genuine piece of art.

Read the rest of the review and watch a video blog featuring Peter Sciretta and Jeff Goldsmith of Creative Screenwriting Magazine after the jump.

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Kevin Smith has unveiled the final credit card of his upcoming horror film Red State, which promises that “almost this entire cast will return in Hit Somebody.”
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Four Photos From Kevin Smith’s ‘Red State’

Hot off the heels of its acceptance to Sundance, the first stills from Kevin Smith’s Red State have come online and they look nothing like a Kevin Smith movie. And we mean that in the best possible way. Red State, which is a thriller about “a group of misfits [who] encounter extreme fundamentalism in Middle America” is certainly a huge departure from the comedies and romances Smith is best known for. Those films, especially recently, had a very pleasant and colorful palate that made the laughs go down smooth. Now, even though he’s once again working with Director of Photography David Klein, one gets a sense that Smith really swung for the fences here, delivering a film with a very specific and terrifying look. The more we see and hear about this film, the more our anticipation builds. After the break, check out images of stars Michael Parks, John Goodman and others. Read More »

Kevin Smith has premiered the teaser for his film Red State, but not in any traditional manner. The filmmaker showed a rough version of the teaser to an audience of twenty people at his Smodcastle in LA. But the semi-private showing was recorded and released as a podcast, through which you can hear the audio of the teaser and quite a few comments from the director about making the movie. Read More »

First Look: Kevin Smith’s ‘Red State’

Kevin Smith tweeted the first photo from his new film Red State late Tuesday night. It’s a shot from behind the head of lead character Abin Cooper, played by Michael Parks (Kill Bill Volume 2), who is a preacher loosely based on Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church. Hit the jump to see the photo and read more about the film, which is currently in production.
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Logline Released for Kevin Smith’s ‘Red State’

Kevin Smith

Briefly: We still don’t know very much about Kevin Smith‘s long-gestating middle-America horror film Red State, other than that Michael Parks is tapped for a lead role and that the film is based in part on sham ‘preacher’ Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church. But now there’s a logline for the film, which comes via STYD, that clarifies things just slightly:

A group of kids encounters a crazed preacher (based on Fred Phelps, founder of the Westboro Baptist Church) who gives a whole new meaning to the term “extreme fundamentalism.”

Well, OK, very slightly. Smith is doing a good job keeping this one locked up; he’s talked about wanting to just shoot the movie quietly without giving too many details away, and so far he is successful. The film shoots this fall, so we’ll expect to know more in the next couple months. In addition to Michael Parks, Kyle Gallner, Melissa Leo, Dermot Mulroney, Michael Angarano and Steven Root all seem to have roles. So Gallner and Angarano are in the group of kids, and hopefully Melisssa Leo will be on the preacher’s side.

Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassin’s Ball Movie Trailer

Smoking Aces 2

I’ll admit, I didn’t like Joe Carnahan‘s Smokin Aces as much as I was hoping to. Disappointed is probably the appropriate word. That’s not to say there isn’t things to like about the film… it just wasn’t the balls out action film that many were expecting. And the direct-to-dvd sequel, Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassin’s Ball, isn’t likely to be any better. In fact, it will probably be a lot worse, especially considering that Lost Boys: The Tribe director P.J. Pesce is at the helm.

The press release advertises that the film “features a sexy cast, whip-smart script and hyper-kinetic visuals.” The big selling point is that Lazlo Soot and the Tremor Brothers from the original theatrical film make their return. Here is the short plot synopsis (plot? do we really need a plot in a Smokin Aces direct-to-video sequel?):

Federal agents once again match wits with a cadre of creative killers in the high-octane feature-length film Smokin’ Aces 2: Assassins’ Ball.  Walter Weed (Tom Berenger) is an unassuming desk jockey at the FBI when the Bureau uncovers a plot to assassinate him. A team of degenerate, psychotic assassins dispatched by mystery man Hal Leuco to win a huge bounty includes a resourceful beauty who has a unique method of killing her prey (Martha Higareda), a power-tool wielding psychopath (Vinnie Jones) and a deadly master of disguise (Tommy Flanagan). Also in the hunt is the fan-favorite Tremor family from the original film, featuring nymphomaniacal gun-nut (Autumn Reeser) and her lethal kinfolk (Maury Sterling, Michael Parks and C. Ernst Harth). Baker (Clayne Crawford), the agent in charge of the operation, puts himself and his team in the line of fire to defend Weed, but it’s not until the smoke clears on the film’s explosive climax that the surprising identity of the plot’s mastermind is revealed.

Still with me? You can watch the trailer embedded after the jump.

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