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Luc Besson‘s The Family (once called Malativa) seems like a fun amalgamation of well-known film ideas, as Robert de Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer play the two heads of a former mob family that has gone into witness protection in France. Despite the helpful guidance of Tommy Lee Jones, things don’t go so well, thanks to a comically toxic combination of elements: the family’s inability to change, and the attentions of a clean-up crew that wants to silence them.

The trailer is below, and you’ll see some Coppola, Demme, and Scorsese in this footage. (It even opens with a Rolling Stones song — maybe the best Stones song, actually — but Scorsese did serve as a consultant and exec producer who worked on the edit.) There’s also a good bit of Besson’s trademark energy, and along with the cast looking engaged that makes the whole thing worth a look. Read More »

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If you were perhaps looking for a companion piece to The Flowers of War, in which a big western star (Christian Bale) played in a film about Chinese history, then Back to 1942 might be it. Here Adrien Brody and Tim Robbins are two men caught up in social and political upheaval in China’s Henan province, which in the film’s timeline is enduring the worst famine in modern Chinese history.

There’s a gritty look to much of the footage here that looks great; this is the sort of giant film that Chinese directors such as Feng Xuigang — who directed here — have been able to put together lately with increased funding at home. But there’s also an earnestly serious tone here that almost veers towards the unintentionally comic that I can’t tell if the film will play well. Regardless, 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 »

Here at last is the trailer for Dark Shadows, the most recent of many pairings between director Tim Burton and Johnny Depp. The actor has wanted to revive the ’60s supernatural soap opera Dark Shadows for years, and he and Burton, after much planning, finally shot the movie last year. One of many questions about the project has been concerned with whether something that has come across like a bit of an obsession for Depp can translate into a movie that people want to see now.

The trailer premiered on Warner Bros.-owned The Ellen Degeneres Show today — appropriate, I suppose, for a film that adapts a soap opera — and we’ve got it below.

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Is Warner Bros. mounting the most abstract trailer release ever? We’ve seen so many new photos from Tim Burton‘s Dark Shadows in the past week, it’s like the studio is just releasing the trailer one frame at a time. And it is a little bit weird that we’ve already got a trailer for the stop-motion version of Burton’s Frankenweenie, which opens in October, while we haven’ t yet seen a shred of footage for Dark Shadows, which is a mere two months away, with an opening set for May 11. (Not like the film is wanting an attention-getting cast, with the likes of Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green and Michelle Pfeiffer.)

So break out your zoetrope, print out these stills and assemble your own Dark Shadows trailer. Read More »

Tim Burton has two films scheduled for release in 2012 and, earlier today, we got the trailer for the second one: Frankenweenie. That still leaves us without a good look at the Burton that comes out first, May 11th’s vampire adaptation Dark Shadows. The new issue of Vanity Fair helps curb that with some striking and evocative character portraits of stars Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green and Michelle Pfeiffer. Check them out after the jump. Read More »

Here’s a new image from the other Tim Burton movie that will be out in the first half of 2012. While we just saw a trailer for his producing effort Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, this is for the movie he directed after many years of talking about the project: Dark Shadows.

This look at star Johnny Depp will already be familiar to those who have been following along with the development of the film. He plays the centuries-old vampire Barnabas Collins, originally introduced in the ’60s TV soap Dark Shadows. We haven’t seen much of Eva Green, however, other than in the first pre-shoot promo shot that introduced the cast. She plays the witch Angelique Bouchard, a character that has a very specific history with Barnabas Collins.

We can’t give you a much larger look at the pic, but after the break the screenwriter of Dark Shadows offers some clues as to just what sort of film we’re in for.

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Remember when we saw a set photo featuring Johnny Depp in Tim Burton‘s Dark Shadows, and he looked like a weird supernatural Michael Jackson cosplayer? We’ve seen one big official cast photo that made him look a lot better, and now there’s a good official image of Depp and Michelle Pfeiffer.

And in this one, Depp looks kind of great as the vampire Barnabas Collins. The hair, the makeup pallor, and the slight change to his nose and chinĀ  all combine to make him look like a younger but appropriately rakish version of Collins. That’s the lone new pic, above, but read on for comments from Burton about the movie. Read More »

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