Conan the Barbarian isn’t the only guy getting the Unforgiven treatment. The 1991 Clint Eastwood western has become a genre landmark, essentially nailing shut the concept of the anti-hero created when the spaghetti western subgenre flowered with A Fistful of Dollars in 1964.

Now Ken Watanabe is playing the Eastwood role in a Japanese-produced remake of Unforgiven, which is set in Japan in 1880. Lee Sang-il directs, with part of the film oriented around Japan’s transition out of very secluded tradition to a more modern society able to come to terms with outside influence. That conflict has been played out in Japanese cinema many times before, especially as many samurai films were essentially rebranded westerns. So this remake seems like nearly an inevitability.

See some shots from the film below, along with a few other news items:

  • Simon West will direct a remake of the Burt Reynolds film Heat,
  • the new Mortal Kombat film has a rough budget,
  • Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen and a bizarre stranger caught in Oldboy set pics,
  • and an Oldboy cast member talks about Brolin’s physical transformations for the film.

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Look out, bad-film fans: Josh Lucas might be making a play to be the new Nicolas Cage, and he’s doing it from within a Nic Cage movie! Stolen reunites Cage and his Con Air director Simon West (who also helmed last weekend’s The Expendables 2) in a film about a criminal (Cage) whose former partner (Lucas) wants a payout from an old job. To get it, he kidnaps Cage’s daughter (Sami Gayle) and drives around town with her held in his cab as Cage frantically tries to track her down with the aid of an old associate (Malin Akerman).

If that doesn’t tell you everything you need to know, the header photo should help out. Check out the trailer below, and be ready to see Josh Lucas chewing scenery with his mouth wide open. Read More »

The Expendables 2 delivers on every single insane promise you can imagine. It is loud, stupid, funny, and filled with lots of over the top action. It lets some of the world’s most famous action actors chew the same pieces of scenery. The first film did some of that, but was mostly just boring, getting caught up in a bland story. In this sequel, directed by Simon West (Con Air), there’s definitely some of that bland story, and the dialogue is much worse than that of the first film. But when that is juxtaposed with gory, boisterous action set pieces that include exploding heads, flying knives, plane crashes, boat crashes and guns of all shapes and sizes, it’s forgivable and fun.

Adding to the success is a cast that’s even better this time around, as Chuck Norris and Jean Claude Van Damme join the already awesome line-up of Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Jet Li and Randy Couture. Oh, and Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s roles are expanded this time too. West hasn’t reinvented the wheel with The Expendables 2, he’s just shined it up real nice, put spikes and skulls on it and rolled it through the mud. So far, it’s the best action film of the year. Read More »

That’s a new still from Riddick, above, which was recently shared by Vin Diesel. In addition to that, this Sequel Bits features the following stories:

  • Casino Royale title designer comes back to open Skyfall
  • Sly Stallone gets happy in a clip from The Expendables 2
  • Captain America 2 may follow Iron Man 3 to North Carolina
  • and Katy Perry wants to be one of Ridley Scott’s replicants.

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‘The Expendables 2′ Theatrical Trailer

We’ve seen two teaser trailers for Simon West’s sequel to The Expendables — well, one teaser, and one trailer for this trailer. But now we’ve got an actual trailer, with actual footage showing some of what happens when you put Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Randy Couture, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Chuck Norris, Liam Hemsworth, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the same movie.

I don’t think there’s anything else I can say here; see the trailer below. (Header image is, sadly, not from the trailer. Consider it a bonus.) Read More »

Here’s a pretty rote teaser trailer for Affliction: The Motion Picture… er, The Expendables 2, which puts Sylvester Stallone and Jason Statham back at the forefront of an action extravaganza that also stars Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Randy Couture, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Chuck Norris, Liam Hemsworth, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Check it out below if you want to see all those faces for a second or two each. Read More »

Briefly: As if the cast of Simon West‘s The Expendables 2 wasn’t already big enough, here’s one more. The film already features Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Terry Crews, Randy Couture, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Chuck Norris, Liam Hemsworth, Bruce Willis, and Arnold Schwarzenegger in what may be the most egregious collection of biceps and testosterone since Pumping Iron II: The Women.

Now we’ve learned that the current top-ranked tennis player in the world, Novak Djokovic, will cameo in the movie. Why? Because producer Avi Lerner is a fan and wants him in the movie. (Or wanted to hang out with him for a minute, and so got him to be in the movie.) Djokovic has already gone to Bulgaria, where the film has been shooting for weeks. He’ll cameo as himself in the movie. Hopefully he’ll kill someone with a racket. We’ll find out on August 17, 2012.

After the jump, check out a couple videos featuring Djokovic, one of which shows him doing impersonations of other players. Read More »

Briefly: Simon West, the director of Con Air, The Expendables 2, and the Nic Cage film Stolen that we just mentioned this morning, is now in talks to make a new ‘racing romance’ called Dust and Glory.

THR says the film is based on a novel by Evan Green, which is set during the Redex trials of the ’50s. That is, a race that covered thousands of miles of very difficult Australian landscape. In fact, the trade says the book and resulting script (by Robert Lewis Galinsky) is something like Mad Max crossed with Jewel of the Nile. (What, a Romancing the Stone reference wasn’t available?)

There’s no casting yet; producers of the indie hope to cast the film by the end of this year, and shoot in Australia by summer 2012. West, meanwhile, has to finish The Expendables 2, and he’s also set to direct the mo-cap CGI war film Thunder Run.

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