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Stronger was originally reviewed as part of our Tiff 2017 coverage. Plot: The true story of Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman (Jake Gyllenhaal), as he struggles to rebuild his life after losing both legs. Review: As the second high-profile, Boston Marathon bombing film, David Gordon Green’s Stronger won’t be able to avoid comparisons to Peter Berg’s Patriots Day,... Read More »
- Chris Bumbray
Last weekend was a major one in Hollywood, thanks to the 2017 Emmys!
Photo: Invision/Arnold Turner and Willy Sanjuan
Photo: Pilot Pen
Pics: See All the 2017 Emmys Red Carpet Arrivals!
Debra Messing made sure to keep Zyrtec on hand to keep allergies at bay as she got ready for Emmy weekend events on Sept. 16.
Photo: Michael Simon/startraksphoto.com
Julianne Hough, Nina Dobrev and Lea Michele kicked off the weekend by meeting up at the pre-Emmy Variety and Women in Film 2017 TV bash, at Gracias Madre in West Hollywood, California, on Sept. 15, where guests sipped on specialty Svedka Vodka cocktails during the soiree, which was presented »
When Nnamdi Asomugha was growing up in Los Angeles, he briefly hoped for a career playing for the Lakers. “But that dream ended when I was like 10 and I realized I couldn’t compete with the other guys at that level,” Asomugha tells Variety. Instead, the self-professed “curious” guy listened to those around him when they saw his talents and wound up playing pro football for 11 years, mostly as cornerback for the Oakland Raiders. He began moonlighting as an actor in 2008, and has become a producer since the end of his football career, in 2013.
At what point in your life did you decide you wanted to move from the sports side of entertainment to film and television?
I was maybe halfway through my career, and I was shooting a Nike commercial, and the director came to the trailer and said, “Hey man, you’re really gifted at this. I get a lot of athletes that come in »
- Danielle Turchiano
Peter Berg’s take of unsung heroes Patriots Day is barely a year old and here we are with another Boston Marathon bombing film in David Gordon Green’s Stronger. Rather than focus on the event itself, however, John Pollono’s script turns focus squarely onto the shoulders of Jeff Bauman—the terrorist attack’s most recognizable victim. But while he could have easily minimized this man’s struggle into a generic fluff piece of Hollywood inspirational perseverance, he admirably highlights the darkness those “lucky” enough to survive endure instead. We’ve seen the interviews and heard pundits declare Jeff a hero on national TV. We’ve seen his smile waving the Bruins’ flag and throwing a Red Sox pitch. Pollono and Green make it their duty to show what’s missing from those images: the pain concealed beneath.
Our country is owned by reality TV and the 24-hour news »
- Jared Mobarak
Aaron Sorkin’s directorial debut “Molly’s Game” and David Gordon Green’s emotional drama “Stronger” landed at the Toronto Film Festival Friday, providing showcase true-life roles for Jessica Chastain and Jake Gyllenhaal, respectively. The two stars, who are incidentally set to partner on screen together in Stephen Gaghan’s Tom Clancy adaptation “The Division,” could dive headlong into very different lead actor and actress Oscar races this year.
It’s been more than a decade since Gyllenhaal roped in a supporting actor nomination for his performance opposite Heath Ledger in Ang Lee’s “Brokeback Mountain.” In the years since, he stumbled just enough (2010’s “Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time”) to recalibrate and maintain a true heading on roles that excite and challenge him. Indeed, that recalibration has become the actor’s ongoing narrative, as performances in films like “End of Watch,” “Prisoners,” “Enemy,” “Nightcrawler,” “Southpaw” and “Demolition,” among others, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Sometimes movies impress you with their formal daring, their transgressiveness, their experimental boldness. Sometimes movies win you over with visual spectacle, novelty, unpredictability. And sometimes movies don’t necessarily have any of those qualities, they just flat-out work. David Gordon Green’s “Stronger,” a familiar yet undeniably moving film about Jeff Bauman, the everyman Bostonian who lost both his legs in the 2013 Marathon bombing, is a movie that just works.
It works, even though there are plenty of reasons to be suspicious of it. It’s a true story, cloaked in prestige trappings, about overcoming impossible odds. It’s a film about the Boston Marathon bombing that comes less than a year after Peter Berg’s “Patriots Day,” and heir to a long line of sometimes manipulative fact-based films that have seized on a moment of national tragedy to tell an inspirational tale. But then, “Stronger” is an inspirational tale that acknowledges easy inspirational tales are often »
- Andrew Barker
The true story of Jeff Bauman, who lost both of his legs in the 2013 bombing, is told with detail and care in a film that works hard at avoiding cliche
When tasked with recreating a recent tragedy on screen, film-makers find themselves toeing a precarious line between respect and exploitation, the end result too often being met with outraged accusations of “too soon!” by an understandably angry mob. So while films about the second world war still prove largely profitable (Dunkirk’s mammoth $414m global take is recent proof of this), there’s less consistency when covering events that are more fresh in the memory. Last year, Peter Berg’s one-two punch of Deepwater Horizon and Patriots Day both struggled to attract much of an audience, strong reviews doing little to persuade audiences to relive real world horrors that still linger at the forefront.
- Benjamin Lee
Scarlett Johansson and gang can’t conjure any chemistry, or many laughs, in this dire tale of a hen party gone wrong
This gender-swap of Peter Berg’s 1998 film Very Bad Things is a Very Bad Thing indeed. Scarlett Johansson stars as Jess, a wannabe politician and bride-to-be who is whisked off to Miami by her college gal pals for her bachelorette party. The gang (comprising Jillian Bell, Zoë Kravitz, Ilana Glazer, Kate McKinnon and no detectable chemistry) accidentally kill a male stripper and must figure out what to do with the body. McKinnon gets a couple of good lines as Jess’s Aussie friend Pip (“singer-songwriter is the dream; party clown is the reality”), but even the film’s saltiness feels safe. Gags about piss and penis pasta, vibrators and self-waxing strips confuse vagina-related “jokes” with a feminist perspective, as signalled by Jess’s plan to win a game »
- Simran Hans
“We’re thrilled that the summer lineup of ‘Ballers’ and ‘Insecure’ connected with our viewers out of the gate,” said Amy Gravitt, executive vice president of HBO Programming.. “We’re so proud to work with Dwayne, Issa and all of the amazing talent in both shows.”
“Ballers” stars Dwayne Johnson as ex-athlete Spencer Strasmore, who has reinvented himself as a financial manager for today’s top players sports today. Created by Stephen Levinson, the hit comedy series returned for its ten-episode third season on July 23. Other cast regulars for the current season include: Rob Corddry, John David Washington, Omar Benson Miller, Donovan Carter, Troy Garity, London Brown, Jazmyn Simon and Dulé Hill.
- Joe Otterson
Mark Wahlberg is Going Big in his search for the perfect director for the Caron Butler biopic -- we're told he's lasering in on 3 names ... Peter Berg, Spike Lee and Barry Jenkins. Wahlberg has been gung ho about the project since securing the rights to make a movie based on Butler's life story last year. The story is incredible ... Butler overcame a hard life as a drug dealing youth who was arrested more than 15 times to become an NBA champion. »
- TMZ Staff
When directors more suited to big, bumbling and mindless action flicks take on films “based on true events,” there’s reason to be skeptical of the outcome. In the best case scenario, we get a film like Peter Berg’s “Lone Survivor” which, certainly, isn’t without faults and fails to understand the term subtlety, but never feels as if the story behind the events is taking second seat to spectacle. On the worst case scenario end of the spectrum, we have Michael Bay productions such as “Pearl Harbor,” “13 Hours” or even Berg’s own “Patriots Day.
- Ally Johnson
Evil spreads faster than justice — that’s one of the things that makes it so sinister. It’s hard to contain, it’s always on the offensive, and it isn’t bound by the tactfulness of the truth. Love must be fought for, hate needs only to be permitted. There’s a lot to sort through in Matt Heineman’s profoundly harrowing “City of Ghosts,” the latest in a long line of recent documentaries about the atrocities that are being committed in Syria, but that grim dichotomy emerges from the chaos intact and more striking than ever. Almost everything else is lost in the rubble, sacrificed at the altar of a film whose horrors are so upsetting that they ultimately represent little more than their own madness.
“City of Ghosts” may be concerned with a death-defying group of citizen journalists, but the film isn’t particularly concerned with context — it »
- David Ehrlich
Mark Wahlberg enjoyed a relaxing yacht day off the coast of Italy on Tuesday afternoon. The actor - who is currently on vacation with wife Rhea Durham and their four kids - showed off his sexy body in turtle-print swimming trunks as he went for a dip in the crystal blue water and whipped around on a jet ski with one of his sons. Once he returned to the boat, he and Rhea were spotted sharing a laugh while taking in the beautiful ocean view. Mark announced back in March that he and director Peter Berg are moving ahead with Mile 22 as an action franchise at Stx entertainment, so it makes sense that he'd squeeze in some quality family time before he gets back to work. RelatedMark Wahlberg Has Been Making Us Blush For Decades »
- Monica Sisavat
Patriots Day, 2016.
Directed by Peter Berg
Starring Mark Wahlberg, Kevin Bacon, John Goodman, J.K. Simmons, Michelle Monaghan, Christopher O’Shea, Rachel Brosnahan, Alex Wolff, Themo Melikidze, Jimmy O. Yang, Jake Picking, and Melissa Benoist.
Recounting the events of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings and the subsequent investigation and manhunt to find those responsible.
When searching for images to attach to this piece there isn’t many available that don’t include Mark Wahlberg. He’s the star and so on, I get it, but there lies the rub. They’re stuck between giving the movie star enough screen time and compiling this real event’s timeline.
Wahlberg plays fictional character Tommy Saunders who represents several different people that were involved in the tragic events of the bombings. The problem is that due to so many people being merged into one, Tommy just so happens to be either in the midst »
- Gary McCurry
If Peter Berg’s gripping Patriots Day centered on Boston’s law enforcement and how they reacted to the marathon bombing of 2013, then David Gordon Green’s true-life drama Stronger looks set to tell its story through the lens of Jeff Bauman, a 27-year-old Boston native left on the brink of death after the attack.
While waiting at the finish line to cheer on his ex-girlfriend, Erin, Bauman was sadly one of the 16 people who lost limbs once the blast occurred – both legs, in this particular case – and was forced to undergo a long, painful road to recovery that involved Ptsd, crippling physical pain and, ultimately, becoming the “living embodiment of the Boston Strong.” It’s a story with enough raw emotion to reduce us to an emotional wreck, and by adapting Bauman and Bret Witter’s non-fiction novel, Green and screenwriter John Pollono will no doubt deliver a poignant, touching tribute to those affected by the Boston attack.
On board to help bring that story to life are Jake Gyllenhaal (The Division) and Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black), two equally dynamic actors that could well be in line for award nominations for their respective performances.
The official synopsis for the film is as follows:
Stronger follows Jeff Bauman, an ordinary man who captured the hearts of his city and the world to become the symbol of hope following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Gyllenhaal stars as Jeff, a 27-year-old, working-class Boston man who was at the marathon to try and win back his ex-girlfriend Erin (Maslany). Waiting for her at the finish line when the blast occurs, he loses both his legs in the attack. After regaining consciousness in the hospital, Jeff is able to help law enforcement identify one of the bombers, but his own battle has just begun. He tackles months of physical and emotional rehabilitation with the unwavering support of Erin and his family. It is Jeff’s deeply personal account of the heroic journey that tests a family’s bond, defines a community’s pride and inspires his inner courage to overcome devastating adversity. Filled with raw emotion, humanity and humor, Stronger is the inspirational real-life story of the man who became the living embodiment of “Boston Strong.”
Stronger, also starring Miranda Richardson and Clancy Brown, is expected to open on September 22nd, a date it currently shares with Battle of the Sexes, The Lego Ninjago Movie and Matthew Vaughn’s action sequel, Kingsman: The Golden Circle. »
- Michael Briers
Peter Berg’s Patriots Day earned solid reviews when it hit theaters last year, but the way that movie invented a single character who appeared at all of the major turning points of the 2013 Boston bombing struck me as disingenuous. Now, director David Gordon Green is here with Stronger, a film that tells the true story of one […]
- Ben Pearson
If you’re asking yourself how many movies about the Boston Marathon bombing we need, the answer is (currently): two. Earlier this year we got Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg‘s muscular take on “Patriots Day,” and this fall, we’ll have another viewpoint from the team of David Gordon Green and Jake Gyllenhaal with “Stronger.”
The film will tell the true story of Jeff Bauman, who lost his legs at the finish line of the race when the bomb went off but played a key role in identifying the culprits behind the attack.
- Kevin Jagernauth
After Peter Berg took some liberties in directing a thriller-esque approach to the Boston Marathon Bombing drama with last year’s Patriots Day, a new film this fall takes a more personal lens on the horrific event. Stronger, directed by David Gordon Green, tells the story of survivor Jeff Bauman (Jake Gyllenhaal) who adjusts to his new life after losing his legs in the terrorist attack.
Ahead of a fall release and likely Tiff debut, the first trailer has now landed. “I can’t begin to think about the pain that he has been through. In fact, I have thought about it a lot. I’ve tried to,” Gyllenhaal tells USA Today. “But I don’t know if I would have been able to survive. I don’t know if I have the strength that he has. And that’s a question that I ask myself every day with this film.”
Stronger is the inspiring true story of Jeff Bauman, an ordinary man who captured the hearts of his city and the world to become the symbol of hope following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Jeff, a 27-year-old, working-class Boston man who was at the marathon to try and win back his ex-girlfriend Erin (Tatiana Maslany). Waiting for her at the finish line when the blast occurs, he loses both his legs in the attack. After regaining consciousness in the hospital, Jeff is able to help law enforcement identify one of the bombers, but his own battle has just begun. He tackles months of physical and emotional rehabilitation with the unwavering support of Erin and his family. It is Jeff’s deeply personal account of the heroic journey that tests a family’s bond, defines a community’s pride and inspires his inner courage to overcome devastating adversity. Filled with raw emotion, humanity and humor, Stronger is the inspirational real-life story of the man who became the living embodiment of “Boston Strong.” The film also stars Academy Award® nominee Miranda Richardson and is directed by David Gordon Green.
Stronger opens on September 22. »
- Jordan Raup
David Gordon Green didn’t exactly knock it out of the park with his last feature, the 2015 Sandra Bullock misfire “Our Brand is Crisis,” but he’s got what looks to be one powerhouse of a comeback on his hands with “Stronger.”
The Boston Marathon Bombing drama stars the very appealing duo of Jake Gyllenhaal and Tatiana Maslany and is based on the 2014 memoir of the same name by Jeff Bauman. Gyllenhaal plays Bauman, a victim of the bombing who lost his legs.
“Stronger” is the second major motion picture to focus on the Boston Marathon Bombing after Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg’s “Patriots Day,” which was released last December. While that film took a detailed look at the manhunt to capture the terrorists behind the attack, “Stronger” looks to be a more intimate look at the lives affected.
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- Zack Sharf
In today’s roundup, CBS Daytime announced promotion of three executives, while Misty Copeland is set to guest judge on NBC’s “World of Dance.”
CBS Daytime promoted executives Margot Wain, Ray Paolantonio, and Laurie Seidman. Wain was upped to senior vice president of daytime programs, and Paolantonio and Seidman to vice presidents of daytime programs. In her new position, Wain will continue as the current executive of “The Price Is Right” and “The Bold and the Beautiful,” while working on daily creative and strategic elements. Paolantonio will oversee “Let’s Make a Deal” and “CBS Dream Team… »
- Rebecca Rubin
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