Looking back at the great actors from the Golden Age of Hollywood – the stars like Clarke Gable and Spencer Tracey – and it’s apparent how few A-list actors working today have quite the same sense of style and gravitas. George Clooney is one of the few who follows in their illustrious footsteps and brings a degree of class to his films.
Clooney’s effortless suave and sophistication is apparent in many of the films he’s starred in – from the mediocre rom-coms all actors of his stature appear to be obliged to star in through to the textbook Ocean’s heist movie franchise, few other actors quite manage to exude cool as well as Clooney.
- Andrew Dilks
Presumably The Joker and Mr. Freeze will appear as young versions of themselves, in the show’s now firmly-established format. The likes of The Penguin, Catwoman and The Riddler are all up and running, so it was only a matter of time before these big bads were ushered in.
Whoever is cast as Batman’s ultimate nemesis faces some stiff competition from Jared Leto, who’ll take the grown up version of the role in upcoming Suicide Squad. The latter option has less to worry about – last time we saw Freeze he was lumbering about as Arnold Schwarzenegger in Joel Schumacher’s critically-mauled Batman & Robin movie.
- Steve Palace
Tim Burton, Joel Schumacher, Christopher Nolan, and Zack Snyder have all done what most superhero junkies could only dream of doing: direct a Batman movie. But there was one other filmmaker privileged enough to have suited up the masked manhunter for cinema, achieving almost overnight success in 2003 and a cult classic amongst Batman fans—without the “superpowers” of a million dollar budget or the tyranny of studio executives. The director: Sandy Collora. The film: Batman: Dead End.
“Behind The Mask”, a 90-minute documentary on the life and career of Sandy Collora, was shown recently at Monsterpalooza in Burbank, CA, telling the story of the indie filmmaker’s refusal to “sell out” to major studios and finding satisfaction in directing his own films.
- Holly Interlandi
Happy Batman Day, everyone! Around the world, May 1st may mark a spring holiday, but here, it marks the first appearance of the Dark Knight, in Detective Comics No. 27, in 1939.
For the past 76 years, the Caped Crusader has been fighting Gotham City evildoers in comic books, movies, TV shows, and pretty much anywhere else you can shine a Bat-signal. Throughout the years, Bruce Wayne's alter ego has gone through many incarnations, not just in actors (from Adam West to Michael Keaton to Christian Bale to Ben Affleck, among the many), but also in character, from haunted avenger to squeaky-clean do-gooder to campy clown to kinky prowler to world-weary fighter. He's due for yet another change this week, with the releases of DC's Batman No. 40 -- in which Bruce Wayne and the Joker finally kill each other (or do they?) and a special issue of DC's Divergence, where an undisclosed character »
- Gary Susman
Lucius Fox: “You want to be able to turn your head.”
Bruce Wayne: “Sure would make backing out of the driveway easier.”
―Lucius Fox and Bruce Wayne
Tim Burton, Joel Schumacher, and Christopher Nolan have all left their mark on Batman’s cinematic incarnations with varying degrees of success. Burton’s distinctive gothic style redefined Batman for a new generation and brought the character back to his pulpy roots. Schumacher’s neon soaked version of Gotham City lifted the vibrant world of comic books right off the page and onto the silver screen. Nolan grounded Batman in a realistic world, fighting against the kind of terrorist onslaughts that send chills down the collective spine of a post 9-11 society. Each filmmaker’s interpretation varied so wildly that it is peculiar to see that they all have one striking similarity. Not one of the seven live-action Batman films fully captured Batman »
- Victor Stiff
When a DVD gets a reissue, its distributor tends to change the artwork. Er, not always for the better...
Movie studios love having large catalogues of older movies. They guarantee a revenue stream after all, through TV sales, streaming services, and the occasional repackaging of a DVD and/or Blu-ray edition.
But new packaging means new artwork, and a star who was hot when the film first came around may have faded since. Plus, audience trends change. Plus, there's the added bonus of luring people to buy two copies. Marvellous!
Most of the time, artwork updates go without a hitch. But in recent times, particularly with 90s movies we've noticed, some of the updates, er, 'dumb things down' slightly. Most of these exhibits are from the UK, we should note. If we broadened it more than we had into the Us - which we may do in a future piece »
You wanna watch out for that Darren Aronofsky. He might just surprise you. After a good couple of decades making grim, magical realist dramas like Requiem For A Dream and Black Swan, he was surrounded by rumours that he was due to direct either/or the second Wolverine film or that ill-fated Robocop remake. In the end he did neither: instead, he did a big-budget retelling of Noah And The Great Flood, in a way that displeased the faithful and was of no interest to his usual audience.
That seemed like something of a left-turn for the auteur director, but it was on the cards for a good while before. Because, not so far back in the mists of time, Aronofsky was approached with an even stranger proposition. Warner Bros were floundering in the wake of their critically and commercially disappointing Batman sequels, eventually canning Joel Schumacher’s plans for another total camp-fest. »
- Tom Baker
Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy has become the most popular live action take on Batman, at least in the eyes of the public. Which should come as no surprise; they’re extremely well written, acted and directed, and they were huge critical and commercial successes to boot. Nolan made the universe his own, grounding it in a relatable reality and bringing real emotional depth to the characters. In short, they’re great movies and deserving of the acclaim.
But it also feels like The Dark Knight Trilogy has completely overwhelmed the legacy of the original Tim Burton movies. They rarely get mentioned much these days, and when they do, it’s with a strange sense of smug irony. They’re seen as relics from another era, products of a more naive time that haven’t aged well. »
- Padraig Cotter
Barbara Walters is coming out of retirement – again.
The veteran news correspondent’s seemingly momentous decision to step down from her post at ABC News, made last year, has always been something of a red herring. Yes, she no longer appears on “The View,” but she has appeared on ABC’s airwaves from time to time. And now, she is set to revisit her past work for ABC on Discovery Communications’ Investigation Discovery cable outlet.
In “American Scandal,” Walters will revisit compelling stories she has covered during her career, while sharing personal experiences and previously unseen footage. She will re-examine her work on famous crimes committed by people like Jean Harris, Jim Bakker, Mark David Chapman and others.
The six-part series, produced by ABC’s Lincoln Square Productions, is just one of seven new series being offered by the crime-and-drama cable outlet, which has become one of the stronger growth »
- Brian Steinberg
Barbara Walters returns to series television for Investigation Discovery’s 2015-16 season, which also boasts a show from Joel Schumacher and the network’s first-ever scripted series. Walters, who retired from ABC’s “The View” in May 2014, will reveal personal stories and never-before-seen footage from her coverage of crimes committed by Jean Harris, Jim Bakker, Mark David Chapman and others. The six-part series is produced by ABC’s Lincoln Square Productions. Investigation Discovery’s upcoming slate also introduces the network’s first scripted series. “Serial Thriller,” a three-part original mystery, follows characters in a community terrorized by one of America’s most notorious serial killers. »
- L.A. Ross
A version of this story first appeared in the March 27 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Joel Schumacher is checking in. The director-producer is teaming with Investigation Discovery for a true-crime series about hotel murders, including the 2010 killing of designer Sylvie Cachay at Manhattan's Soho House. The three-episode Do Not Disturb: Hotel Horrors, set to premiere later this year, also will spotlight a priest killed by a male street hustler in New Orleans and a homicide at a London chain hotel. Read More Woman Found Dead in Bathtub at SoHo House But Schumacher was most
- Hilary Lewis
Thomas McCarthy's The Cobbler hits theaters this weekend, though you wouldn't likely know it considering I haven't even received an email about it and that's no big surprise after the savaging it received at the Toronto Film Festival last year. However, something good has come out of its release, which is a sit down with Adam Sandler's co-star in the film, Method Man. Speaking with Rotten Tomatoes (via FilmDrunk), Method Man revealed his top five (six) favorite films and it's not necessarily the list that's so great (though trust me, you aren't likely to guess them), but more his explanations. First, the list: Frailty (dir. Bill Paxton) The Station Agent (dir. Thomas McCarthy) Napoleon Dynamite (dir. Jared Hess) Snow On Tha Bluff (dir. Damon Russell) The Raid / Dredd (dir. Gareth Evans / Pete Travis) Now the best explanation for why he liked any of these movies comes with his explanation for Napoleon Dynamite, »
- Brad Brevet
Remember when Leonardo DiCaprio said he was planning to take a long break from acting after "Django Unchained" and "The Great Gatsby"? Well, that didn't really seem to happen. He's currently shooting Alejandro González Iñárritu's "The Revenant," his slate as a producer is massive, and now he's just tacked on another gig that will seem both producing and starring. DiCaprio is taking the lead in the true story tale, "The Crowded Room," a project he's been trying to get off the ground for years, and one that other filmmakers have tried to make too. In fact, James Cameron, Joel Schumacher, and David Fincher toyed with it at various points, and the subject matter is intriguing. Based on Daniel Keyes' book "The Minds of Billy Milligan," it tells the story of the titular man, who became the first person to use the legal defence of multiple personality disorder successfully. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Leonardo DiCaprio has signed on to both star in and produce a film adaptation of "The Crowded Room," New Regency's long in gestation film adaptation of the acclaimed 1981 book "The Minds of Billy Milligan" by Daniel Keyes.
Billy Milligan was a man tormented by twenty-four distinct personalities battling for supremacy over his body. It was a battle that culminated when he awoke in jail, arrested for the kidnap and rape of three women on the Ohio State University campus in the 1970s.
In a landmark trial, Billy was acquitted of his crimes by reason of insanity caused by multiple personality - the first such decision in history. The personalities included a petty criminal, a drug dealer, an affection-starved lesbian, an eight-year-old sadist, a con man, a snobby Englishman, a Yugoslavian communist, and an escape-artist. Each of the people play a distinct role in this often shocking true story.
The likes »
- Garth Franklin
Plot: A team of medical researchers invent a serum (which they dub Lazarus) that is capable of bringing dead patients back to life. When one of the doctors . Zoe (Olivia Wilde) suffers a deadly accident, they use the serum to bring her back, and while successful, they soon discover that their colleague has changed since visiting the other side. Review: Does anyone think that premise sounds familiar? If you.ve seen Joel Schumacher.s stylish (and gloriously silly) Flatliners then no doubt »
- Chris Bumbray
30 years ago today, John Hughes's teen movie The Breakfast Club opened in the Us, and although it wasn't a runaway box office hit, in the years since it has rightly claimed a place as a screen classic.
Buoyed by brilliant performances, a sharp script and direction from Hughes and that Simple Minds track, this is a film we return to again and again. But what happened to its stars? We go then and now with the cast to find out what happened to the brain, the athlete, the basket case, the princess and the criminal.
Anthony Michael Hall - Brian Johnson
As he grew out of child star roles, Hall sought to shed his established screen persona with a diverse selection of character parts across film and TV. »
Warner Bros. Pictures
It’s been very, very, very easy to bash Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice as its production brings dumb decision after inexplicably dumber decision, but at the very least there’s no way it can match the unbridled horror of the worst Batman movie ever. Take your victories and all that.
Now the superhero genre is Hollywood’s biggest money spinner and Christopher Nolan has given the Caped Crusader a ground-up reinventing, Batman & Robin is a painful memory. Eighteen years on, its crimes against cinema are resolutely in the past, a haunting reminder of a time when a single movie could all but halt the entire notion of comic book adaptations.
But don’t let that distance hide just how abhorrent the film is. Anyone who claims it’s a film whose cheese enables it to pass over into “so bad it’s good” territory has »
- Alex Leadbeater
There’s no point denying the influence and impact of Christopher Nolan’s acclaimed box office behemoth that is The Dark Knight Trilogy. It cemented the director’s stature as one of Hollywood’s most talented filmmakers, and reinvented Batman for a whole new generation, while at the same time distancing fans from their painful memories of Joel Schumacher’s Batman And Robin. As far as blockbusters go, there are few that meld style and substance so well, but as they say, nobody’s perfect.
As entertaining and thoughtful as Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises are, however, they’re not without their flaws, as evidenced by these 15 irksome subplots which simply drag each film down several pegs and detract from the fun. Batman Begins certainly feels like the most narratively water-tight of the three films in many regards, and hence doesn’t show up much on this list, »
- Jack Pooley
You might’ve seen the first trailer for 2015’s Fantastic Four and thought some of the same things we thought; namely, that it doesn’t quite look like the wild and wooly world that Stan Lee and Jack Kirby kicked off the Marvel universe with way back in 1961. It’s a deadly serious trailer, mostly devoid of FX money shots, selling an overall adult tone over the thrills one would expect of the Fantastic Four. At least early on it’s being marketed as a sci-fi film, not a superhero one. Sometimes comic book filmmakers will cite inspiration from a source material that isn’t necessarily evident on the screen. There’s no trace of Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns in Batman Forever for instance, though Joel Schumacher tried to spin it...
- John Gholson
Phil Lord and Chris Miller may not be returning to the Lego Movie universe anytime soon (in a directorial capacity, at least), but are hard at work on producing several upcoming Lego films, including The Lego Movie 2 and the two spinoff films featuring Lego Ninjago and Lego Batman.
The latter project is the most exciting at the moment, in part because of how fun Will Arnett’s caped crusader was in The Lego Movie last year, and because of how the film will reportedly explore all eras of Batman’s tumultuous cinematic history.
As such, there’s plenty of research to be done by Lord and Miller, as well as the film’s director Chris McKay. We’ve seen a few different interpretations of the Dark Knight through the last few decades – from the campy Adam West era to Michael Keaton’s two Tim Burton-directed entries. Then of »
- James Garcia
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