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Freestyle Releasing has acquired all North American rights to animated comedy “Hell and Back” and set a Sept. 25 release date.
Tom Gianas (“Saturday Night Live”) and Ross Shuman (“Robot Chicken”) directed the story of two best friends who must rescue their buddy after he’s accidentally dragged to hell. Producers are Corey Campodonico, Alexander Bulkey and Eric Blyler, all of “Robot Chicken.”
Freestyle’s top performer has been the faith-based drama “God’s Not Dead” with $60 million in U.S. grosses. It also has released Nicolas Cage’s “Left Behind” and Rob Reiner’s “And So It Goes,” starring Michael Douglas and Diane Keaton.
- Dave McNary
"I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?" says the narrator at the end of "Stand By Me," a film that is having a zeitgeist blip here in Cannes, referenced in "The Lobster" and mentioned by the Critics' Week presenter who introduced Canadian director Andrew Cividino's first film, "Sleeping Giant." But the answer to that rhetorical question here might be "and would you want to?" because while Rob Reiner's essential coming of age story is a definite touchpoint for Cividino's immaculately observed, deeply felt debut, it is largely by counterpoint. "Sleeping Giant" is a story of friendships quickly made and even more quickly broken, of jealousy, confusion, betrayal, and peer pressure so barometrically oppressive three young men buckle under its weight. It is the anti-"Stand By Me." Partly this comes from the age and era of the protagonists, »
- Jessica Kiang
John Seale was retired. Then George Miller dangled a "Mad Max" movie in front of his face and, well, how can an Aussie say no? The 40-year veteran jumped right into the maelstrom Miller and his team were conjuring in the desert of west Africa and, along with killer second unit teams, captured one of the most innervating experiences of the year in "Mad Max: Fury Road." Oh, and he turned 70 years old while doing all of this. Seale won an Oscar for "The English Patient," the first of a three-film collaboration with the late Anthony Minghella. He also partnered up with Peter Weir on a trio of projects ("Witness," "The Mosquito Coast" and "Dead Poets Society") and he's worked with many great filmmakers besides, from Sydney Pollack to Ron Howard, Rob Reiner to Wolfgang Petersen. In addition to the win, he has three more Oscar nominations to his credit and I must say, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Scarlett Johansson Oscar dress Scarlett Johansson at the Oscars Looking great in a long purple dress, Scarlett Johansson displays her tight-fitting costume and bare back at the 83rd Academy Awards held on Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. Oscar 2011 co-host and Best Actor nominee James Franco (for Danny Boyle's 127 Hours) thus introduced Johansson and fellow Oscar presenter Matthew McConaughey: "I am six degrees of Kevin Bacon away from our next two presenters. Figure it out on the Internet." Well, if you're lucky. Some have remarked that Franco was a more effective Oscar host online, where he tweeted some of the evening's to-dos, than on the stage of the Kodak Theatre. His fellow equally panned Oscarcast host was actress Anne Hathaway. Scarlett Johansson movies Scarlett Johansson has been featured in more than 40 films since her debut at age 10 in Rob Reiner's North, back in 1994. Johansson, in fact, »
- D. Zhea
Lawyers in motion pictures have been portrayed as one of two extremes, devils or angels, almost since celluloid was invented. The first film dealing specifically with a law firm and attorneys, 1933’s Counsellor at Law, starring John Barrymore, portrayed its J.D.s as upstanding citizens, as did the early Perry Mason films of the same period. This quickly changed, however, with many attorneys portrayed as being capable of the same brand of skullduggery as their shifty clients. With that in mind, we bring you a list of the good, the bad and the ugly of lawyers in movies. Enjoy, and please refrain from suing us if you feel otherwise...
1. Devil’s Advocate (1997)
Keanu Reeves plays Kevin Lomax, a hot-shot young Florida lawyer who is all about climbing the ladder. When he gets an offer he can’t refuse from a high-powered New York firm, led by the legendary John Milton »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
Within the pantheon of classic rhythm and blues, the Drifters stand out as one of the few outfits that helped to define the sound — that irresistible synthesis of doo-wop, gospel, blues, and soulful harmony. At the center of the group was Ben E. King, the brilliant musician and singer from North Carolina behind the hit 1961 ballad “Stand by Me,” which, years later, would inspire the Rob Reiner film of the same name. The song, King’s biggest single, is universally adored for its sweeping string arrangements, bass line, lyrical sentiment, and, of course, King’s stunning vocals. King wrote it for the Drifters before a series of legal conflicts led to his departure and a fortuitous solo release. As the fourth-most-played song of the 20th century, it’s what King, who passed away at the age of 76 from natural causes today, is best known for, but his influence is much »
- Lauretta Charlton
Premiering June 24, the techno thriller stars Rami Malek (The Pacific) as Elliot, a cyber-security engineer by day/vigilante hacker by night who is recruited by the leader (Christian Slater) of an underground group to destroy the very firm, E Corp, he is paid to protect. The regular cast also includes Portia Doubleday (Mr. Sunshine), Carly Chaikin (Suburgatory) and Martin Wallström.
Brad Pitt 'Glory Days' costar Nicholas Kallsen Brad Pitt 'Glory Days' costar Nicholas Kallsen dead at 48 Nicholas Kallsen, who was featured opposite Brad Pitt in the short-lived television series Glory Days, has died at age 48 in Thailand according to online reports. Their source is one of Rupert Murdoch's rags, citing a Facebook posting by one of the actor's friends. The cause of death was purportedly – no specific source was provided – a drug overdose.* Aired on Fox in July 1990, Glory Days told the story of four high-school friends whose paths take different directions after graduation. Besides Nicholas Kallsen and Brad Pitt, the show also featured Spike Alexander and Evan Mirand. Glory Days lasted a mere six episodes – two of which directed by former Happy Days actor Anson Williams – before its cancellation. Roommates Nicholas Kallsen and Brad Pitt vying for same 'Thelma & Louise' role? The Murdoch tabloid also »
- Andre Soares
If you are one of those who's been hoping that his move into acting was just a passing engagement for rapper Common, I'm sorry to break it to you, but it doesn't look that way. He's on fire and in demand, at the moment, apparently! Hustle... hustle... hustle... I guess. In the last week alone, he's joined the cast of the WB's "Suicide Squad" big screen adaptation, although there's no word yet on what character he's signed up to play; he also joined the cast of director Rob Reiner's next project, "Being Charlie," in a lead role; his other post-"Selma" credits include the crime drama "Run All Night" with Liam Neeson and »
- Tambay A. Obenson
A fresh perspective can be a a tremendous boon to creating a television show, or it can be an enormous handicap. If you're new to this, you may not see the form the same way all the veterans do, and you may wind up telling stories in an entirely new way. Or you may find yourself repeating things that many before you have tried because you don't know what's a cliche and what isn't. On the positive end of things, look at Simon Rich. He wasn't entirely new to TV when he created Fxx's "Man Seeking Woman," having spent a few years on staff at "SNL," but it was the first show he created and the first sitcom he worked on after a long time as a novelist and short story writer. That show doesn't always work, but when it does, it's explosively funny and feels like no other comedy on television. »
- Alan Sepinwall
Common is on fire and in demand, apparently! Who woulda thunk it? Just about half-an-hour ago, I published an item on his joining the cast of the WB's "Suicide Squad" big screen adaptation, although there's no word yet on what character he's signed up to play. Now the raptor has joined the cast of director Rob Reiner's next project, "Being Charlie," in what The Hollywood Reporter says is a lead role. He'll co-star alongside Nick Robinson, Morgan Saylor, Devon Bostick, Susan Misner, Ricardo Chavira and Cary Elwes in the Castle Rock Entertainment feature film that will see Robinson »
- Tambay A. Obenson
Over the course of film history, we've seen plenty of long-time actors step behind the camera to take up their directorial ambitions. Clint Eastwood did it. Mel Gibson did it. George Clooney did it. What do these three have in commonc Well, for starters, they are all men, so there's that. Further, they are all white, but more on that later. More to the point of the article, these men all eased into their directorial careers by starring in their respective debuts, using their presence on screen to help market their talents off it. And with his feature directorial effort The Water Diviner, which hits limited theaters this week, Russell Crowe is just the most recent addition to a growing list of actors who have decided to try their hand behind the camera. Like Eastwood, Gibson, and Clooney before him, the Best Actor winner stars in his first feature as director, »
- Jordan Benesh
It’s All Gone Pete Tong
Written and directed by Michael Dowse
The term ‘mockumentary’ is used whenever a film comes along employs the familiar storytelling techniques typically found in documentary filmmaking but for a piece of fiction, specifically comedy. In other words, a parody of a documentary. Talking heads played by actors, characters interacting with the camera, such tropes, hallmarks of documentaries, are turned on their heads as everything in the mockumentary is in actuality a construct of screenwriters and a director and played for giggles. Certainly one of the more fondly remembered examples is the hilarious This is Spinal Tap, the Rob Reiner picture that follows the trials and tribulations of the titular fictional heavy metal band. Few other mockumentaries have ever reached the same heights of verisimilitude to actual documentaries. In 2004 Michael Dowse took his own stab at the genre, so to speak, with It’s All Gone Pete Tong, »
- Edgar Chaput
Occasionally, a movie villain will pause for a moment to deliver a brief story or anecdote. And often, these apparently incidental tales tell us a lot about an antagonist's state of mind, experiences or warped worldview.
We've compiled a selection of 20 here. Some of them are blackly funny. Many are disturbing. One or two are even moving. The first one's very strange. All of them bring something unique to each particular film in which they appear, and all of them are laced with a delicious hint of menace.
20. Xander - Enemies Closer (2013)
"When I was a little boy at my grandmama's place, she had a lovely goose. I named her Edith, after the French singer Edith Piaf..."
We begin with a delightfully weird story from Peter Hyams' 2013 thriller, »
By Alex Simon
Lawyers in motion pictures have been portrayed as one of two extremes, devils or angels, almost since celluloid was invented. The first film dealing specifically with a law firm and attorneys, 1933’s Counsellor at Law, starring John Barrymore, portrayed its J.D.s as upstanding citizens, as did the early Perry Mason films of the same period. This quickly changed, however, with many attorneys portrayed as being capable of the same brand of skullduggery as their shifty clients. With that in mind, we bring you a list of the good, the bad and the ugly of lawyers in movies.
1. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Gregory Peck’s Atticus Finch became the boilerplate for the Noble Movie Lawyer in this iconic, 1962 adaptation of Harper Lee’s award-winning novel. Atticus Finch, a small town attorney in the Depression-era South, must defend a black man (Brock Peters) falsely accused of raping a white woman, »
- The Hollywood Interview.com
Alex Garland, screenwriter of “28 Days Later,” “Sunshine” and “Never Let Me Go,” makes an impressive directorial debut with cerebral sci-fi thriller “Ex Machina” (in theaters today), but Garland waves off the achievement of leaping to directing as “just next in a continuum.” “The truth was that there was no epiphany moment about directing, because I just don’t dignify the directing role the way we’re supposed to,” the British filmmaker told The Dissolve. “There are a few people — like Woody Allen, he’s an auteur, and I’m cool with that. But for me, directing is about collaboration.” Whether directing is a logical next step or a hard-sought achievement for screenwriters, it’s often done by telling studios, “Hey, here’s my next screenplay. You can have it as long as I get to direct.” Preston Sturges — at the time the highest paid screenwriter in Hollywood — is noted for »
- Emily Rome
This month Alan Rickman's A Little Chaos, Ryan Gosling's Lost River and Russell Crowe's The Water Diviner see these performers make the dizzying leap from actor to director. But in which of their colleagues' footsteps might they follow?
We take a look at six different categories of actor-turned-directors.
Too handsome to be a supporting actor, and lacking the gravitas of a major star, Ben Affleck looked to be heading towards Kilmer-ville before he released Gone Baby Gone, a dark Dennis Lehane thriller he co-wrote and directed, with brother Casey taking the lead. Follow-up The Town proved solid, but his next effort, Argo, was a surprise Best Picture winner. The fact Affleck didn't receive a Director nomination suggests he's not yet been forgiven for the likes of Gigli, but the forthcoming Lehane adaptation Live By Night should fix that.
As an actor, Clint Eastwood's flinty »
While it is currently enjoying the success of shows such as the long-running Suits, the second-season renewal Sirens, and the brand new Dig, USA Network has now announced its 2015/2015 development slate, and it contains nine new scripted dramas to get excited about.
Backed by big names – including Rob Reiner, Catherine Hardwicke, Len Wiseman, Barry Sonnenfeld and Charlize Theron – these fledgling projects indicate a major push forward in original programming for the channel, and a major shift into television for high profile filmmakers.
Paradise Pictures: From the team that delivered Suits (Aaron Korsh, Rick Muirragui), this period drama is set in 1940s Hollywood and follows the fortunes of those trying to make it to the top of the entertainment industry tree, against a backdrop of blacklists, the rise of television, and the fall of studio monopolies.
Starchitects: An episodic drama exploring the workplace pressures at a top-level Los Angeles architecture firm. »
- Sarah Myles
The cabler also announced pilot orders for a pair of offshoots of Chrisley Knows Best — one, a late-night talk show hosted by patriarch Todd Chrisley, the other a series in which Todd tags along with his college-bounds kids — and that WWE’s SmackDown will join its lineup in early 2016.
The summer premiere dates are as follows:
USA Network is doubling down on WWE, bringing “SmackDown” over from Syfy next year as part of an effort to hike the volume of live programming on NBCUniversal’s flagship entertainment cabler.
The move of “SmackDown,” a slew of development projects, new programs featuring the Chrisley clan and summer scheduling announcements were unveiled Tuesday morning at USA Network’s press upfront gathering held at 30 Rock’s Rainbow Room.
USA Network president Chris McCumber made it clear in his presentation that the cabler is shifting the focus of its original programming to court a millennial audience. He noted that the generational shift of millennials now making up the largest component of the 18-49 audience is well under way. USA’s new shows are built around stories and characters that exhibit “bravery, optimism, self-reliance and hope” — all themes that resonate with millennials, per McCumber.
Alex Sepiol, USA’s senior VP of scripted programming, »
- Cynthia Littleton
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