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The Hunger Games had a pretty massive cast to start with, but since the first film ended with (um, spoiler alert) a whole bunch of characters dead, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is reloading with tons of other new characters.

Though we’ve already seen most of them thanks to the posters, trailers, and stills, a new batch of images offers an even closer look at the fresh faces we’ll get to know this fall — as well as another peek at our favorite returning stars. Hit the jump to take it all in.

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This second trailer for Thor Freudenthal‘s Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters features a cavalcade of beasties, and also a significant presence from Nathan Fillion, who plays a modernized version of the god Hermes. That’s probably enough to warrant a look from many potential audience members.

Those elements were present in the first trailer, along with plenty of material featuring returning cast (Logan Lerman, Brandon T Jackson, and Alexandra Daddario). But the intent here seems to be to sell the movie as a real spectacle. In that respect it succeeds pretty well. The series still has to truly establish itself as a proper successor to the Harry Potter films — and that may not be possible — but at least it appears to be able to make good on a promise to deliver colorful and dangerous monsters. Read More »

Stanley Tucci Joins ‘Transformers 4′

Stanley Tucci

The 3D IMAX camera wasn’t the only new addition to Transformers 4 announced at CinemaCon yesterday. Michael Bay also revealed that Stanley Tucci had boarded the cast, joining Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, and Jack Reynor. Tucci’s the kind of guy who’s good in a bad film and even better in a good one, so he’ll be a welcome presence. Hit the jump for more details.

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One of the many YA series to get life on movie screens has been Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The first film in the series, The Lightning Thief, bowed in 2010 and introduced film audiences to the story’s modernized take on classic mythological characters.

Like many YA adaptations outside the Harry Potter and Twilight series, The Lightning Thief didn’t quite wow audiences. Unlike many stillborn series, however, this one is actually getting a sequel. Star Logan Lerman may quickly be aging out of the role, but he’s back for Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters, in which Percy, the half-human son of Poseidon, goes after the legendary Golden Fleece.

This chapter features Alexandra Daddario and Brandon T. Jackson returning to support Lerman’s hero, and we get to see Stanley Tucci as Dionysus. Oh, and Nathan Fillion plays Hermes, which might be enough to get people watching. Read More »

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Here are some sequel-related odds and ends for the start of the week. After the jump:

  • Transformers 4 scouts the GM plant as a possible location
  • Dredd isn’t getting a sequel, but may get a short film
  • Win one of 50 uniform from Star Trek Into Darkness
  • Star Trek Into Darkness participates in Earth Hour
  • Universal’s “Despicablimp” embarks on a cross-country tour
  • See the first pics from Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters

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Now that a director’s been locked in for Episode VII, the big question is who’ll get to star in it. And that’s what today’s Star Wars Bits is all about. After the jump:

  • Disney CEO confirms the original trio is in talks to return
  • Billy Dee Williams has also been asked to come back
  • Warwick Davis is “definitely” looking to do more Star Wars
  • New details revealed for Star Wars: First Assault game
  • Eli Roth, JGL, Mila KunisStanley Tucci and more weigh in

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The first Hunger Games film was released one year ago this month. Feels longer than that, doesn’t it? Maybe that’s because so many other huge blockbusters have been released since then. But The Hunger Games, unlike those other blockbusters, continues with a sequel coming out this year.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire will be released on November 22 and Lionsgate has already started marketing for the film. We saw the Victors Posters and now individual character portraits are being released. To start, we see Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks), Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci) and Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson), all of whom are reprising their roles in the sequel.

UPDATE: We’ve added Cinna, played by Lenny Kravitz.
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In Jack the Giant Slayer, Bryan Singer engages in the time-honored tradition of taking a classic fairy tale and reshaping it to fit the times. Current trends being what they are, that means turning the film gritty and (relatively) realistic, with plenty of Lord of the Rings-style action.

Screenwriters David Dobkin and Darren Lemke take the basic touchstones of Jack and the Giant Beanstalk — the poor farm boy, the magic beans, the scary giants — but introduce several brand-new elements to the story. In this version, Jack (Nicholas Hoult) heads upward to rescue a beautiful princess (Eleanor Tomlinson) and stop her evil betrothed (Stanley Tucci) from taking over the kingdom. It’s a version of Jack that’s never been told in all the centuries that the character has been around. So why does it all feel so tiresomely familiar?

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