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[Read my more exhaustive "Killing Jesus" set report here.] Ouarzazate, Morocco. It's late October in central Morocco and Haaz Sleiman is worried about crucifixion. Because context is important, it should be noted that Sleiman is sitting in a tent on the set of National Geographic's "Killing Jesus" and he's playing Jesus. We're deep into production on the adaptation of Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard book, but director Christopher Menaul has saved perhaps the hardest scene for late in the shoot. "It's a messed up way to die," Sleiman reflects. "It's probably the most gruesome awful way to die and comparing to any other kind of torture it's like the ultimate because it's also humiliating. They have you walking naked and dragging the beam. I mean the thought of me as Haaz walking with a beam naked, nothing... It would mortified me. I mean I would be terrified. So imagine someone actually really had to go through that. »
- Daniel Fienberg
Stephen Moyer has arrived on the Ouarzazate, Morocco, set of National Geographic Channel’s Killing Jesus with just three hours of sleep after a numbing 20-hour journey to the remote city by land and air. Fortunately, his exhaustion serves the intensely pivotal scene he is about to shoot. Standing in a crowded courtyard on Ridley Scott’s sprawling Kingdom of Heaven set, Moyer — who plays Pontius Pilate, Roman governor of Jerusalem — is locked in a final showdown with the high priest Caiaphas (a simmering Rufus Sewell) over Jesus’ fate. Pilate urges Caiaphas that scourging is punishment enough for the savaged … Continue reading →
- Lori Acken
Making a film adaption of a popular video game series can be somewhat of a tricky endeavor. When you already have a set fanbase expecting the elements of the games translated perfectly into film form, the chance of making a successful one is more time than not, a disappointment. Unfortunately, such is the case with the Ridley Scott-produced Halo: Nightfall, a series put together into a film that just simply fails at capturing any of the wonderful parts and experiences that come with playing the Halo series.
Taking place in the future (even within the series), a peace treaty has been made between the Spartans and those damned aliens trying to ruin everything left and right, Nightfall introduces Locke, a brand new character that will eventually play a larger role in the upcoming video games, but even with that addition to the roster of characters, the film just doesn’t really go anywhere. »
- Jerry Smith
Over the past few years, Sean Young has been vocal about her potential role in Blade Runner 2 – heck, the actress even went so far as to say that she should’ve took the place of Charlize Theron in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus. How and ever, it appeared as though Young was right with her original predictions as it seems as though Scott has no plans to feature her in the upcoming sequel.
During an extensive interview The Guardian, the actress spoke in-depth about the 1982 sci-fi classic, her experiences as a woman in the film industry, and how it’s unlikely that she will ever reprise her role as the replicant (?) Rachael.
“I saw Ridley a month ago, and not a peep was uttered from his mouth about it, and so I left it alone.”
As such, it seems safe to assume that Blade Runner 2 will explore new replicants or, on the other hand, »
- Michael Briers
Sean Young has been pretty vocal about the brewing "Blade Runner" sequel, particularly across 2013. In January she stated she met with the people making the film, but said she didn't think any of the original cast would be back (as we know, this is untrue, with Harrison Ford reprising his role of Deckard). Then in August, things got more heated when she told fans to boycott the effort as she wasn't in it. Then a month later, Young proclaimed that she should've played Charlize Theron's role of Vickers in "Prometheus." Essentially, she's had very strong opinions about appearing (or not) in the work of Ridley Scott, but as she predicted, she won't be coming back as Rachael in the "Blade Runner" sequel. “I saw Ridley a month ago and not a peep was uttered from his mouth about it and so I left it alone,” she told The Guardian. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Earlier this week the actress told The Guardian: "I saw Ridley [Scott] a month ago, and not a peep was uttered from his mouth about it, and so I left it alone."
Ford has been confirmed to be reprising his role as Deckard, and original writer Hampton Fancher will also be back. Filming on the sequel is slated to begin mid-2016. »
- Garth Franklin
The Blade Runner follow-up is currently in the works, with Scott returning as producer and Prisoners filmmaker Dennis Villeneuve directing.
Downplaying the likelihood of her appearing in the project, she told The Guardian: "I saw Ridley a month ago, and not a peep was uttered from his mouth about it, and so I left it alone."
Ford has been confirmed to be reprising his role as Deckard.
The original Blade Runner experienced a turbulent production and under-performed at the box office on its initial release, but the movie gained a cult following thanks to its Director's and Final Cut editions.
It was based on Philip K Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?.
Is Deckard a replicant? »
Ouarzazate, Morocco. Officially, the Moroccan city of Ouarzazate is nicknamed "The door of the desert," resting south of the High Atlas Mountains and on the edge of the Draa Valley. Thanks to the presence of Atlas Studios, though, Ouarzazate is perhaps more appropriately known as The Hollywood of Central Morocco, or perhaps even The Hollywood of Morocco. Ouarzazate has a population of just over 50,000, but in late October of 2014, that population includes a disproportionate number of Jesuses, Judases and an absurd number of Marys, both Jesus' mom and of the Magdalene variety. It's late October of 2014 and Ouarzazate is the beating heart of TV's Biblical world. "It's a very holy town right now," laughs Haaz Sleiman, one of the Ouarzazate Jesi -- Yes, that should be the name of a fantasy baseball team -- specifically playing the title role in National Geographic's "Killing Jesus," the project that has brought me to this region. »
- Daniel Fienberg
The movie chronicles a naval captain being forced against his will to navigate a cocaine-filled submarine past the Us coast guard.
This could be the next major action project for Neeson, who recently hinted that he would like to give up the high-impact film genre.
Watch a trailer for Run All Night below: »
Just days after the 39th anniversary of the conviction of Patty Hearst back on March 20, 1976, Deadline is reporting that Fox 2000 has acquired the rights to a new, untitled book being written by Jeffrey Toobin about the life and kidnapping of Hearst. The writers behind Big Eyes, Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, will be adapting Toobin’s account.
Deadline is also speculating the role might also be in development for Jennifer Lawrence, but those talks are currently preliminary.
Hearst was 20 when she was kidnapped from her wealthy parents in the Hearst Publishing Family. She was later found to have changed her name to Tania and had joined up with her kidnappers, the Symbionese Liberation Army and eventually robbed a bank in San Francisco. Hearst’s story, based on her own novel, was first adapted into a film in 1988 by Paul Schrader, with Natasha Richardson in the role. Hearst is now 61.
- Brian Welk
After stunning Netflix subscribers worldwide with his powerhouse turn in the first season of star-studded drama Bloodline, Aussie actor Ben Mendelsohn certainly appears to be on the rise. And now, after a career of strong supporting performances, he could be about to get his big break: Deadline reports that he may be joining the cast of Star Wars: Rogue One.
Details on the first Star Wars spinoff, which will be directed by Godzilla helmer Gareth Edwards and boasts a script by Chris Weitz (Cinderella) and Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli), are pretty sparse. Oscar nominee Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) has bagged the lead role, but rumors suggesting that the pic will be a heist movie revolving around bounty hunters who steal blueprints for a Death Star are still unconfirmed.
Regardless, it’s exciting to hear that Mendelsohn is on the cusp of landing a major studio role like this. »
- Isaac Feldberg
The star famous for playing the femme fatale Rachael in Ridley Scott’s sci-fi classic has had many ‘troubled moments’ since – including lawsuits, booze addiction and some unpleasant co-stars. So what is it like to be on the outside of Hollywood looking in?
“Please don’t write shit about me, Ok?” This is how the last email that I get from Sean Young ends, the one where she says she regrets ever writing to me.
The actor emailed for the first time the week before, responding to a request for an interview. It had taken some nudging to elicit a reply. She was, she said, busy with a play, but email was doable. “Try to be brief because I get way too many emails in general Lol,” she wrote, “[but] I can try and help you out.”
Related: Tears in rain? Why Blade Runner is timeless
People didn’t like that »
- Danny Leigh
As anyone who's familiar with Mendelsohn's earlier work will tell you, this is potentially good news; he put in a terrifying performance in the Australian drama-thriller Animal Kingdom, played a jaded thief alongside Ryan Gosling in The Place Beyond The Pines, and was wonderfully camp in Ridley Scott's Exodus: Gods And Kings. He's certainly come a long way since his early days in Aussie soap, Neighbours.
How much do we know about “Star Wars: Rogue One”? Well, not that much, and none of the rumors have been confirmed. We know it’s a “Star Wars” spin-off film, we know “Godzilla” director Gareth Edwards is helming, Felicity Jones (“Theory Of Everything”) stars and Chris Weitz ("Twilight: New Moon") and Gary Whitta have the main writing credits. Everything else — rumors of a bounty hunter movie centered around stealing plans to build the Death Star — are pretty much just conjecture at this point. But Deadline brings an interesting casting bit to light tonight. Ben Mendelsohn might be joining the cast. That’s all they got, but it’s intriguing because Ben Mendelsohn makes everything better. That should be a Hollywood axiom and while it’s not quite yet, in the circles of some of our greatest working filmmakers and actors it is. Mendelsohn’s been tapped by Christopher Nolan »
- Edward Davis
Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman and Noomi Rapace are determined to seek justice against a depraved child serial killer in the newly released character posters for their upcoming crime thriller, ‘Child 44.’ The posters for the politically-charged drama were unveiled by the film’s distributor, Summit Entertainment, which is set to release the movie in theaters nationwide on April 17. The script for ‘Child 44,’ which is based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Tom Rob Smith, was penned by ‘Freedomland’ scribe, Richard Price. The thriller was directed by ‘Safe House’ helmer, Daniel Espinosa, and produced by Ridley Scott. Besides Hardy, Oldman and Rapace, the drama also features Paddy [ Read More ]
- Karen Benardello
Bill O’Reilly’s “Killing” series brings its most inherently commercial title — “Killing Jesus” — to National Geographic Channel, and at least with this topic, nobody needs to worry about O’Reilly claiming to have been there. Produced by Ridley Scott’s company, an outfit that’s no stranger to epics, the production lends a straightforward quality to the story, and takes its name seriously, squarely focusing on the circumstances and scheming that surround Christ’s death. Along the way there are discreet miracles, but this represents a more historical approach to material that’s currently arriving in abundance, a byproduct of History’s success with “The Bible.”
Compared with other recent depictions of Jesus, this one — directed by Christopher Menaul from an adaptation by Walon Green — is perhaps most notably characterized by restraint. So while covering a good deal of ground, the filmmakers don’t linger over the ordeal of the Crucifixion in the way, »
- Brian Lowry
Liam Neeson's latest action flick, Run All Night, may have struggled at the box office, but earlier this year, Taken 3 proved that he still has pulling power. Never mind the fact that Taken 3 is a film best forgotten about. Quickly.
Neeson has now added another action film to his slate though, a submarine flick by the name of Narco Sub. This was a film that the late Tony Scott was once going to direct (Ridley Scott is one of the producers, alongside Simon Kinberg), and it's also a project that both Doug Liman and Antoine Fuqua came close to making.
I. The Rattigan Version
After his first dramatic success, The Winslow Boy, Terence Rattigan conceived a double bill of one-act plays in 1946. Producers dismissed the project, even Rattigan’s collaborator Hugh “Binkie” Beaumont. Actor John Gielgud agreed. “They’ve seen me in so much first rate stuff,” Gielgud asked Rattigan; “Do you really think they will like me in anything second rate?” Rattigan insisted he wasn’t “content writing a play to please an audience today, but to write a play that will be remembered in fifty years’ time.”
Ultimately, Rattigan paired a brooding character study, The Browning Version, with a light farce, Harlequinade. Entitled Playbill, the show was finally produced by Stephen Mitchell in September 1948, starring Eric Portman, and became a runaway hit. While Harlequinade faded into a footnote, the first half proved an instant classic. Harold Hobson wrote that “Mr. Portman’s playing and Mr. Rattigan’s writing »
- Christopher Saunders
Despite a 30% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, Chappie director Neill Blomkamp still would have you believe that he is the right man to have behind the wheel of the Alien franchise. But there’s one part of the film series that he’ll have to steer clear of: Ridley Scott’s Prometheus 2. "I changed the one thing [Scott] felt was bumping Prometheus a little bit," Blomkamp revealed to Empire in a recent interview. “One thing that makes me feel good about it,” the filmmaker continued, “is that Ridley is producing it. He likes the idea of what I want to make.” The filmmaker also told the UK publication that he has a title for his new film, and it’s not Alien 5. "I sent...
- Phil Pirrello
After making his mark on HBO’s Game of Thrones, Brian Kirk has taken the reins on 20th Century Fox’s long-gestating thriller Narco Sub, which is eyeing action star Liam Neeson to take on the lead role.
The title will center on “a notorious Ecuadorian drug lord who forces a disgraced American naval officer to navigate a cocaine-packed submarine past the U.S. Coast Guard,” TheWrap reports.
Though Kirk has already signed on, Neeson is by no means a done deal, sources report. Producers Ridley Scott and Simon Kinberg, who have been with the David Guggenheim-scripted project since its early days, both agree that Neeson is the man for the job, and now they’re moving to lock him in. The project may have to move fast to catch him, however. The veteran actor, whose Oscar-nominated performance in Schindler’s List seemed to guarantee him a long career »
- Isaac Feldberg
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