Writer/Director Richard LaGravenese—best known for films like The Fisher King, The Horse Whisperer and Freedom Writers — chats with Blake about breaking into the business, encountering fan backlashes and why it “wasn’t a good decision” to adapt and direct the Twilight-like tween tale Beautiful Creatures.
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Posted on Thursday, January 25th, 2018 by Rob Hunter
(Welcome to The Best Movies You’ve Never Seen, a series that takes a look at slightly more obscure, under-the-radar, or simply under-appreciated movies. In this edition, we take a look at the best adaptations you haven’t seen of young adult novels.)
Young adult (YA) adaptations typically fall into two categories – those featuring characters named Harry Potter, Katniss Everdeen, or Bella Swan, and those that don’t. The movies in the latter group aren’t as well known and haven’t made nearly as much money, and if we’re being honest, a healthy percentage of them deserve that fate. There are plenty of other good ones, though, from The Perks of Being a Wallflower to The Outsiders, but I’m here to tell you there are also some great ones you’ve probably missed.
One such solid YA movie is 2015’s Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials which in addition to featuring some fun 28 Days Later-like “zombie” assaults also includes some kick-ass action sequences. It’s good! You can skip the dull first installment – teens are forced to run out of a maze, there, now you’re all caught up – and just jump to this second film. Once you do that you’ll be ready for the trilogy’s concluding chapter, Maze Runner: The Death Cure, which opens this week. You’re welcome.
In the continuing spirit of identifying YA movies that are deserving of more love, I’ve done what I do best, or at least what I do bi-weekly, and selected a handful of good to great titles that were released and quickly forgotten to time.
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Is Beautiful Creatures the next Twilight? The film is a YA tale of a battle between good and evil supernatural forces, focused around the adolescence of a young witch, Lena (Alice Englert), whose powers will be claimed either for the light or dark when she hits her 16th birthday.
The film adapts Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl‘s novel of the same name (the first of a multi-book arc, naturally) and if this new footage is anything to go by the movie definitely has a chance at, um, eclipsing Twilight. Not in the supernatural teen romance category, but for pure “WTF?” factor. A new international trailer runs down a good bit of the story, and also makes the film look like a campy, kooky mess. Some of the “southern” accents here are just marvelous, and for a movie about witches there’s a hell of a lot of vamping going on. I don’t care why Emmy Rossum is screaming towards the end of the trailer; I just want to loop that moment. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, October 9th, 2012 by Angie Han
We’ve got a hodgepodge of new images after the jump, including set photos from Robocop and The Wolverine, stills from Hitchcock and Beautiful Creatures, and even a snapshot of the National Lampoon’s Vacation cast, reunited.
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Posted on Friday, September 21st, 2012 by Angie Han
Speculation over which YA property would become the next Twilight has been swirling for some time now — since the first film hit theaters in 2008, really. But with the beloved vampire series finally poised to come to a close this fall, the timing is now more ripe than ever for some other pair of star-crossed paranormal teenager lovers to swoop in and take Edward and Bella’s place.
Among the contenders are Ethan (Alden Ehrenreich) and Lena (Alice Englert) of Beautiful Creatures, Richard LaGravenese‘s adaptation of Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl‘s bestselling novel. This time around, it’s the guy who’s the clueless human newcomer, and the girl who’s the mysterious, supernatural local. The surprisingly strong supporting cast includes Viola Davis, Emma Thompson, Jeremy Irons, and Emmy Rossum. Watch the new trailer after the jump.
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Posted on Tuesday, May 8th, 2012 by Angie Han
We have quite a mixed bag of new images for you today, covering everything from supernatural teen romance to comic book adaptation. After the jump, get a look at the sci-fi not-quite-remake Dredd, the YA adaptation Beautiful Creatures, Tom Hooper‘s star-studded Les Misérables, Louis Leterrier‘s magician heist flick Now You See Me, and Brian De Palma‘s steamy thriller Passion.
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It’s time for another round of Release Date Shuffle! Perhaps the biggest news here is that Warner Bros. has pushed back its YA fantasy The Seventh Son, directed by Sergey Bodrov and starring Jeff Bridges, Ben Barnes, and Julianne Moore, much farther into next year. But there are also new dates for the supernatural teen romance Beautiful Creatures and the oddball dramedy Robot & Frank, and bad news for Relativity’s military thriller Hunter Killer. Hit the jump for more.
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Briefly: The film adaptation of the supernatural gothic romance novel Beautiful Creatures already features Viola Davis, Emma Thompson, Emmy Rossum, Thomas Mann and, as the lead characters, newcomers Jack O’Connell and Alice Englert.
Now they’ll be joined by Jeremy Irons, who will play the “mysterious and reclusive uncle” of Englert’s enigmatic new girl in town. Hit the jump for the rundown of the film’s story of secrets and sacrifice. Read More »
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Michael Peña has called labor organizer Cesar Chavez his dream role, and now the actor is set to play the part in Chavez, which will be produced and directed by Diego Luna. That’s a great step up from supporting roles in films like Battle: Los Angeles, Tower Heist and The Lincoln Lawyer.
Peña will be joined by America Ferrera as Helen Chavez, and Rosario Dawson as Dolores Huerta. Variety says the film, scripted by Keir Pearson, “depicts Chavez organizing the largest non-violent protest in U.S. history to accomplish his ultimate goal of obtaining basic human rights for over 50,000 farm workers in California.”
Chavez will start shooting in Sonora, Mexico in April. Gael Garcia Bernal and John Malkovich are also among the film’s producers. This is Luna’s second film about a public figure, as his first directorial effort was the documentary J.C. Chavez, about Mexican boxer Julio Cesar Chavez.
After the break, Jennifer Beals produces and stars in a jazz-themed indie called The Lord of Vinyl, and the supernatural YA adaptation Beautiful Creatures gets a little addition from Project X. Read More »
Posted on Monday, March 5th, 2012 by Angie Han
Taraji P. Henson and Idris Elba have boarded No Good Deed, a thriller written by Aimee Lagos (96 Minutes) and directed by Sam Miller (Luther). The Screen Gems project centers around a district attorney who gives up her career to stay at home with her two young children. When a tall, dark, and handsome stranger shows up claiming to have car trouble, she invites him into her home, only for him to kidnap and terrorize her and her family.
Though neither Variety nor THR confirm which character each will be playing, we can probably assume that Henson will be the mom and Elba the charming but dangerous stranger. The film marks Elba’s third time working with Screen Gems, having previously made Takers and Obsessed for the studio. Not such an auspicious track record, but for the sake of these talented actors let’s hope for the best.
After the jump, Nicole Kidman subs in for Rachel Weisz, and Emmy Rossum is a beautiful creature.
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