It’s been a few years since Angelina Jolie got behind the camera as a director. The last film she helmed was First They Killed My Father in 2017, but soon she’ll be working on another true story in Unreasonable Behaviour, the story of British war photographer Don McCullin. And this time she’ll be getting some help from another superstar actor, with Tom Hardy stepping up to produce. Read More »
Brenda Chapman, the filmmaker behind Prince of Egypt and Pixar’s Brave, makes her live-action directing debut with Come Away, a delightful film which chronicles the adventures of Peter and Alice growing up as brother and sister, before they go off to experience the fairy tale worlds of Neverland and Wonderland. Angelina Jolie, David Oyelowo, Michael Caine, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Clarke Peters, Derek Jacobi, and more pop up as adults in this family-friendly saga, but the story really belongs to young actors Jordan A. Nash and Keira Chansa as Peter and Alice, respectively.
Dust off your imagination and watch the first Come Away trailer below. Read More »
The One and Only Ivan is the latest Disney flick that was originally intended for theaters only to end up on Disney+. Based (loosely) on a true story, the star-studded family is about a 400-pound silverback gorilla who sounds exactly like Sam Rockwell, and also has a talent for drawing. Blending live-action and CGI, the film is adapted from the Newbery Medal-winning book by Katherine Applegate. A new One and Only Ivan featurette goes behind-the-scenes of the film, and features a moment where Bryan Cranston enthusiastically proclaims, “A gorilla who draws!” What more do you need?
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Along with remaking all of their animated classics into live-action spectacles, Disney has also been leaning into using photorealistic computer generated animals to lead their stories. From Lady and the Tramp to The Lion King, the animation studio is bringing very convincing digital animals to the screen, for better or worse. Even Call of the Wild, which came to Disney from 20th Century Fox, fit right in with their slate by utilizing computer generated dogs. Now another live-action/CGI hybrid animal adventure is coming to Disney+.
The One and Only Ivan, based on Katherine Applegate’s bestselling book of the same name, follows a 400-pound silverback gorilla who was taken from the wild at a young age and brought into the home of Mack (Bryan Cranston), who raised him lovingly until he was big enough that he needed to be kept in a glass enclosure in the middle of a shopping mall when he’s not being shown off to a paying audience. For Ivan, it’s his normal, everyday life, but when a captured baby elephant named Ruby arrives, he begins to dig into his past and longs to return to his jungle home. Watch the Only and Only Ivan trailer below. Read More »
When animation directors make the jump to directing live-action, the transition can be fraught. Just ask Andrew Stanton, whose live-action debut, John Carter, was a huge bomb for Disney several years ago. Thankfully though, Brenda Chapman, the director of Prince of Egypt and Pixar’s Oscar-winning Brave, successfully makes the leap with Come Away, a delightful fairytale that imagines what might have happened if Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland were siblings before they became the characters we know and love. Read More »
To this day, Maleficent remains one of the outliers of the Disney live-action adaptation machine: a visually dazzling revisionist take on Sleeping Beauty that succeeded in being more than just a nostalgic grab bag of recreations of beloved animated moments. All of it was boosted by the strength of Angelina Jolie‘s bewitching turn as the titular Disney villain and a potent, if somewhat clumsily told, sexual assault metaphor. But after the 2014 film finished its retelling of Sleeping Beauty, what else could there be to tell? In Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, fairy genocide and dastardly politicking, apparently.
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is an ambitious sequel that expands the world and once again pushes a socially relevant allegory to the forefront. It’s full of spectacular action sequences and awe-inspiring world building that is designed like a mix of Avatar meets The Dark Crystal. But this lofty sequel sacrifices all the storybook whimsy in favor of political intrigue and dark plots that are far too complicated to be wrapped up by a typical Disney happy ending, and end up landing with a thud.
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The Eternals will continue to expand the cosmic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe when it arrives in theaters in the fall of 2020. The Marvel Studios movie will dig into the history of the universe by following super-powered and near-immortal beings known as Eternals as they try to keep Earth save from a more monstrous off-shoot known as the Deviants, both sects of powerful warriors created by the cosmic beings known as Celestials. But we learned a bit more about the project at The D23 Expo, including the confirmation of three new cast members. Read More »
Although Marvel Studios has kept its mouth shut about what movies would follow their “Phase Three” and the release of Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home, Hollywood can’t keep every secret. We knew that The Eternals was coming and that The Rider director Chloe Zhao was behind the camera. We also knew a few of the key cast members.
So while it wasn’t surprising to see the film made official at Marvel Studios’ 2019 Comic-Con panel, it’s still exciting to see such a strange superhero team make its way to the big screen. Will this cosmic group of oddballs be the next Guardians of the Galaxy? Here’s what we learned at the panel.
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Angelina Jolie is set to return to the screen for the first time since 2015 with Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. The sequel finds Jolie once again playing the villainous Sleeping Beauty character, reimagined as more of a tragic, complex figure than hinted at in the original animated movie. Elle Fanning is back as well, with Michelle Pfeiffer joining the franchise as a new character. The Mistress of Evil trailer below gives us our first look at Jolie’s return to acting.
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While Disney has been remaking their animated films for years, their recent animation-to-live-action craze was kicked-off with two films: Tim Burton’s 2010 Alice in Wonderland, and 2014’s Maleficent. Maleficent retold the story of Sleeping Beauty from the point of view of the villain, played by Angelina Jolie. Now, a sequel is arriving: Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. We saw new footage from the film at CinemaCon, and lived to tell the tale. Here’s what we saw.
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