In the months that followed the release and general success of Lee Daniels‘ film Precious, the director considered two follow-ups. One was Selma, a civil-rights drama that would have recreated the relationship between Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and President Lyndon Johnson. The other was The Butler, about a man named Eugene Allen, who was a servant in the White House starting in 1954 and working through eight presidencies.

Neither of those films ended up happening. Daniels made The Paperboy instead, and that film will be released later this year.

But now Daniels is looking once again at making The Butler. The film isn’t financed at this point, but as he did when originally trying to make Selma, Daniels is puling together a cast. Right now he’s got Hugh Jackman, Mila Kunis and John Cusack, with David Oyelowo and Oprah Winfrey, who hasn’t acted in a live-action drama since Beloved, as possible additions. Finally, Liam Neeson could end up playing Lyndon B. Johnson, a role he was previously set to play for Selma. Read More »

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The scathing reviews of Sex and the City 2 haven’t fazed writer/director Michael Patrick King, who’s already scored a big name, crowd-drawing cast for his next vehicle. More surprisingly, the movie didn’t faze these actresses, all of whom hopped on board without a moment’s hesitation (or even a script). Starring in King’s not-yet-titled comedy project are Meryl Streep, Oprah Winfrey and Sandra Bullock. It’s “an ensemble comedy set in the world of a Home Shopping-type network, where characters make their way through the maze of mania that surrounds marketing, marriages and the media”.

There’s a gay joke to be made here. I’m not going to use it. Moving right along. Read More »

Captured Movie Trailer

Street fight! Captured is a new NSFW documentary from directors, Ben Solomon and Dan Levin, that examines the historical work of Clayton Patterson, a man who captured New York’s Lower East Side fly-on-the-wall style for 30 years using photography and video. The NY Times once said of Patterson’s work:

He has amassed a huge day-by-day visual history of the area, told mainly through …its myriad and diverse faces: tenement kids and homeless people, poets and politicians, drug dealers and drag queens, rabbis and santeros, beat cops, graffiti taggers, hookers, junkies, punks, anarchists, mystics and crackpots.

And the trailer dutifully exemplifies this while segueing into vintage Oprah clips where Patterson hails the video camera as the perfect device to police the police. Judging from his interview herein, former NYC Mayor Ed Koch might not agree. Set to catchy instrumental music by the notorious band, A.R.E. Weapons, look for Captured on the festival circuit. For more info: CapturedMovie.com

via TAC/HypeBeast

Discuss: Any fave NYC or art-scene docs? The Cruise and Style Wars randomly come to mind.

22% of Vanity Fair’s Top 100 are Filmmakers

Vanity Fair has released the VF 100 – an annual listing of the top 100 leaders of the information age. Below you can find a listing of movie related entries on the list. Check out the full list on VanityFair.com.

4. Steve Jobs – Former Pixar CEO, Member of Disney’s Board of Directors
9. Angelina Jolie/Brad Pitt – Actors
14. Steven Spielberg – Director, Producer, Dreamworks co-founder
22. David Geffen – Dremworks Co-founder
23. George Lucas – Writer, Director, Producer, Chairman of LucasFilm
24. Jerry Bruckheimer – Producer
28. John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, Brad Bird – Pixar’s creative team
32. Sumner Redstone – Majority Owner of Paramount Pictures
33. Arnold Schwarzenegger – Actor
34. Tom Hanks – Actor, Producer
35. Robert Iger – Head of the Walt Disney Company
43. Oprah Winfrey – Actress (kinda), Producer
44. Jon Stewart – Comedian, Actor
45. Stephen Colbert – Comedian, Actor
53. Jeffrey Katzenberg – Dreamworks co-founder, CEO of Dreamworks Animation
55. George Clooney – Actor, Producer
58. Judd Apatow – Producer, Writer, Director
59. Robert De Niro – Actor, Producer, Director
66. Brian Grazer/Ron Howard – Producer/Director
85. The Coen Brothers – Writers, Directors, Producers
87. The Weinstein Brothers – The Weinstien Co
93. Jerry Weintraub – Producer

I never thought I’d see the day when they would have a college class to study Kevin Smith’s films. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, I’d take it — Hell, I could teach it: CA 520J – Films of Kevin Smith (1 credit hour) This course will examine the films of prolific Indy film director Kevin Smith. It will delve into Smith’s history, his entry into filmmaking, his development as a director and writer, and explore motifs and themes as seen in his films. The course will also examine Smith’s trademark “wordy” style in terms of storytelling and narrative flow. 22020171 M Tu W Th 03:30-06:50PM Moore 109 Smith, Jeffrey. Class meets MAY 21 – MAY 24

Camera Phones are banned from the Academy Awards: “…guests are not allowed to bring cameras, including phones with a camera feature…”

Remember: Polls for the 79th Academy Awards close today at 5:00pm PST.
Sirius and XM are merging! Great, now Howard Stern is going to be forced to play nice with Opie and Anthony, and Oprah Winfrey and Friends. It’s bad enough he’s had to smile it up around Martha Stewart.

Steve Zahn (Sahara) has been cast opposite Amy Adams (Junbug), Alan Arkin (Little Miss Sunshine) and Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada) in Christine Jeffs’ (Sylvia) dark comedy Sunshine Cleaning. Zahn plays a married police officer having an affair with the co-owner (Adams) of a firm that cleans up messy crime scenes.

Did you hear that high pitched sound in The Messengers trailer? Me neither. I guess we’re too old.

Scarlett Johansson was named sexiest celebrity of the year by Playboy, taking the crown from Jessica Alba.

Spielberg vs. Paramount continues… Yawn.

Bee Movie Trailer #2 Revealed

Bee Movie Spielberg

Yes, that’s Steven Spielberg talking to Jerry Seinfeld dressed in a Bee suit.
Last year the first teaser trailer was released for Jerry Seinfeld’s computer animated film The Bee Movie. Many people were angry that the teaser was false advertising, as it was done in live action. A second trailer has finally been released, and it also contains live action footage, but cleverly transitions into the actual computer animation. See that after the jump.
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