Sometimes with younger actors it takes time to recognize how consistent is the quality of their performances. There's a lot of drek out there--think about all the indie actors who wind up in movies nobody wants to see. On the other hand New York actor Paul Dano, now 29, keeps scoring memorably juicy roles, and has done so from his Broadway debut at age 12 in a revival of "Inherit the Wind" and his collaboration with Ethan Hawke on "Things We Want," through his first film performance at age 16 in Sundance hit "L.I.E.," opposite Brian Cox. He went on to strong roles in "Little Miss Sunshine," "Meek's Cutoff," "Cowboys & Aliens," "Looper," "The Ballad of Jack and Rose," where he first met Daniel Day-Lewis, his eventual co-star on "There Will Be Blood," And then there's terrific indie romance he made with his girlfriend and co-star Zoe Kazan, who also wrote "Ruby Sparks," directed »
- Anne Thompson
Fox Searchlight has released a new behind-the-scenes featurette for director Steve McQueen’s immensely powerful drama 12 Years a Slave, this time focusing on the film’s fantastic ensemble cast. Led by a truly phenomenal lead performance by Chiwetel Ejiofor as a free man who was kidnapped and forced into slavery for over a decade, the film boasts a wide range of actors that includes Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Alfre Woodard, Brad Pitt, Sarah Paulson, Adepero Oduye, Michael K. Williams, Paul Giamatti, Paul Dano, Scoot McNairy, and newcomer Lupita Nyong’O. This featurette provides a nice overview of the performances and interviews with some of the cast members about the difficult material, and having seen the film I’ll admit I still get choked up seeing snippets of some of these scenes. You'll also get a preview of Hans Zimmer's score in this featurette as well. The film expands wider this weekend and next weekend, »
- Adam Chitwood
As much as genres like Westerns and musicals, the social issue historical drama often arrives in theatre as part of a cycle, one strong box office performance spurring on other producers’ projects. Sometimes a cycle can be re-started thanks to real-world events. The civil rights movement prodded the studios into releasing films that addressed the headlines, films like In The Heat Of The Night and Guess Who’S Coming To Dinner (and of course, the rise of the “blaxplotation” low-budget flicks) in the late sixties. By the mid 1970′s, most of the studios rarely tackled race relations, until a few late 80′s films like Driving Miss Daisy and the incendiary Do The Right Thing. But that subject popped up again just a few years ago, perhaps in part in response to the 2008 presidential elections. Most of these new films took a look at race through the lens of still fairly recent history. »
- Jim Batts
Over the past few years, Paul Dano has established himself as one of the best actors of his generation and someone that can morph into any role. While most people will immediately remember his work in Paul Thomas Anderson's There Will Be Blood and Little Miss Sunshine, he's also great in Kelly Reichardt's Meek's Cutoff, Paul Weitz's Being Flynn (opposite Robert De Niro), Ruby Sparks, Looper, and many more. Based on his work in the films I just mentioned, it's no surprise directors Denis Villeneuve and Steve McQueen wanted him in Prisoners and 12 Years a Slave, respectively, and he delivers some of his best work in both films. Last week I landed an exclusive interview with Dano. He talked about how 2013 has been a very good year, working with Villeneuve, Hugh Jackman and Roger Deakins on Prisoners, McQueen's 12 Years a Slave, getting to play Brian Wilson in »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
On first encountering the 1853 memoir of Solomon Northup, a free black man drugged and kidnapped from an educated, domestic life by opportunistic slave-traders in Washington D.C., director Steve McQueen felt he had read the “[American version of the Anne Frank story]” – two historical people fated to represent institutionalized evils through very personal words and experiences. Northup, as embodied by Chiwetel Ejiofor with a complex psychological palette of dignity, fear, shame, resilient guile, and churning pain, leads us through the true events he experienced in the blighted, grotesque era of Antebellum Southern human exploitation in the unflinching British drama 12 Years a Slave. Terrifyingly objective in detailing the debasing methods particular to the racially-stoked brand of American slavery, 12 Years a Slave is a wearying, enthralling film that is certain to resonate and educate while still being as rivetingly conspiratorial with the viewer as any of the best prison escape adventures.
McQueen (in close collusion with his constant director »
- Gregory Fichter
Over the past couple of months we've heard plenty of names linked to the upcoming Warcraft movie, such as the likes of Colin Farrell (Total Recall), Anton Yelchin (Star Trek Into Darkness), Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood, Prisoners), Anson Mount (Straw Dogs), and Paula Patton (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol), and now it seems we have our first official addition to the cast of Legendary Pictures and Atlas Entertainment's to to be epic video game adaptation.
According to Variety Vikings star Travis Fimmel has secured one of four lead roles in the movie, which is being directed by Duncan Jones (Moon, Source Code). The site goes on to report that Paula Patton remains in talks, while Colin Farrell also has a deal on the table. The film is expected to go into production in January ahead of its release on December 18th 2015, so expect to hear plenty more casting »
- Gary Collinson
Sunday Am, 4th Update: The most interesting news of the weekend, at least to me, is that New Regency’s financed and produced Best Picture Oscar frontrunner 12 Years A Slave marketed and distributed by Fox Searchlight is only playing in 123 theaters (up from 19 last weekend) yet jumped into the Top Ten. Propelled by critical raves, it’s in 8th place despite Steve McQueen’s unvarnished depiction of mankind’s brutality from John Ridley’s screenplay based on the book by Solomon Northup. The per screen average is $17,400 for a new cume of $3.4M. There still is tremendous curiosity in Hollywood as to this pre-Civil War drama’s box office potential after it opened last weekend with an ‘A’ CinemaScore and an impressive $50,000 per screen averager. Studio says it’s playing well in art houses, African American theaters, as well as in mainstream multiplexes in markets La, NY, Atlanta, Wash DC, »
- NIKKI FINKE, Editor in Chief
With pre-production work in full swing on the Warcraft adaptation, the casting speculation and buzz continues. We already know that Colin Farrell and Paula Patton have been offered leading roles (she seems close to a deal; he less so) and that Anson Mount, Paul Dano and Anton Yelchin have all been under consideration. Now one of the people being mooted along with that last bunch, Travis Fimmel, appears close to a firm offer.Fimmel, who broke out this year in the Us History Channel’s Vikings series, certainly already knows how to handle an axe. While there has been no formal negotiation yet, Variety’s sources are pointing to him as the top choice for one of the lead roles.Exactly who the actors will play from the world of Warcraft and how they will fit into the plot are still being kept quiet, though we do know that Charles Leavitt »
It’s been a long time coming, but the movie based on the popular World of Warcraft video game series is going full steam ahead. Directed by Duncan Jones (Source Code), Warcraft has a script by Charles Leavitt (next year’s Seventh Son), and will begin filming in January 2014 for a release in December 2015.
We’ve had a casting shortlist for a while now, with two of the lead roles reportedly offered to Colin Farrell and Paula Patton. Additionally, Paul Dano (Prisoners), Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Anson Mount (Hell on Wheels) are under consideration for unspecified supporting roles.
- Anthony Vieira
With deals currently on the table for Colin Farrell and Paula Patton to feature in Legendary Pictures’ big-screen adaptation of the epic online role-playing game Warcraft, we have news of another set to join the cast. It appears Vikings’ 34 year-old rising actor Travis Fimmel has beaten off stiff competition from Paul Dano (Prisoners), Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Anson Mount (Hell On Wheels) to land one of the main leads.
Thn caught an awesome and intense teaser trailer earlier this year at San Diego Comic Con, introduced by Source Code and Moon director Duncan Jones. He is the man tasked with realising Blizzard Entertainment’s medieval and creature-filled video game, which has been written by Blood Diamond’s Charles Leavitt.
Production on the film is set to begin in January for release set for 18th December 2015. No plot details have yet been released.
The post Travis Fimmel To »
- Craig Hunter
12 Years a Slave, 2013.
Directed by Steve McQueen.
Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Fassbender, Sarah Paulson, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Quvenzhané Wallis, Garret Dillahunt, Lupita Nyong'o, Michael K. Williams, Scoot McNairy, Ruth Negga, and Taran Killam.
In the antebellum United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery.
On a rainy English day in Shoreditch, North-East London, the Rich Mix Cinema was the host to an early festival screening of Steve McQueen’s highly praised and eagerly anticipated 12 Years a Slave. After his two masterworks - Hunger and Shame - McQueen has stood out to me as one of if not the finest director this country has to offer. His unique and incredibly profound stylistic approach to cinema is a revelation, in an era where film as a medium has sunk underneath conglomerates, exploiting the art form for profit. »
- Gary Collinson
Vikings star Travis Fimmel has emerged as the front runner for a leading role in Legendary Pictures' Warcraft video game adaptation. The studio hasn't presented the actor with a formal offer yet, but sources claim that he is their top choice for one of the project's four man characters. No further details have been released at this time.
We reported last month that the actor was on a short list of candidates for unspecified roles, along with Paul Dano, Anton Yelchin and Anson Mount. It isn't known if the actors are all vying for the same role or different parts. We also reported last month that Paula Patton is in talks for a role, and that Colin Farrell was offered another part. Sources indicate that while Paula Patton's negotiations are still ongoing, Colin Farrell's deal isn't progressing as quickly.
While no deals are currently in place, Legendary Entertainment is keen on making Travis Fimmel (Vikings) one of the four leads in their Warcraft feature. Duncan Jones (Moon) is directing the Blizzard Entertainment videogame adaptation that also has Paula Patton (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol) in talks to co-star; Colin Farrell (Seven Psychopaths) also has a deal in the works, but it isn't finalized. Scripted by Charles Leavitt (Blood Diamond), details on Warcraft's plot and characters are being kept under wraps, though the picture has nearly 20 years of gaming history to choose from. Hit the jump for more. Variety reports that Fimmel is the man for Legendary's Warcraft, having beaten out Paul Dano, Anton Yelchin, and Anson Mount for the role. Production is scheduled to begin early next year with a release date of December 18, 2015. Legendary Pictures is producing Warcraft, officially described as “an epic adventure of world-colliding conflict, »
- Dave Trumbore
The Vikings actor is yet to receive a formal offer but he is a favourite for one of the four leads, says Variety.
Studio Universal has announced that the film will release on December 18, 2015, with shooting scheduled for January 2014.
Warcraft is based on the hugely popular video game franchise from Blizzard. »
We've heard quite a bit from the critics about "Blue is the Warmest Color," the endlessly controversial film by French director Abdellatif Kechiche. But we wanted to hear what the people thought. The film opens tomorrow in New York and Los Angeles (and the rest of the country soon thereafter), but made its Us debut at the star-studded New York Film Festival a few weeks back (see if you can spot Paul Dano). So film writer Judith Dry -- aka Rude Jude -- straped on her pink leather tie and asked strangers inappropriate questions about the film (you can read Dry's thoughts on the film and its surrounding hooplah here). (Apologies for the in and out audio). »
- Judith Dry
Of this year’s many awards contenders, Steve McQueen’s “12 Years A Slave” (our review) is the one—unfairly or not—many prognosticators have hotly tipped to take it all at the Kodak Theater next year. With the film already out in New York and L.A. with more cities to follow, Fox Searchlight has released two more clips from the film alongside a featurette focusing on McQueen himself. First up are two short clips—both roughly a minute each—from the film. The first focuses on a tense interaction between Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Solomon Northup and Paul Dano’s loathsome Tibeats. The second clip is taken from the beginning of the film when Northup meets the two swindlers played by Scoot McNairy and Taran Killam—yes, the guy from S.N.L. Lastly, there’s a featurette focusing entirely on director McQueen and how his outsider status—he was »
- Cain Rodriguez
The fascinating promotional featurettes continue for director Steve McQueen’s fact-based drama 12 Years A Slave. This time we have a focus on McQueen himself as he and his cast and crew talk about working with the harrowing, historical account of slavery by Solomon Northup during the 1850s. It’s most certainly an early Oscar favourite with Chiwetel Ejiofor as the lead Northup, whose well-educated, black New York-born husband and father was brutally beaten in a back alley and sold into slavery.
In addition, we also have a brand new television spot and clip from the all-star film released in the Us on the 18th October and the UK 24th January 2014. You can catch our review Here.
12 Years A Slave co-stars Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Garret Dillahunt, Paul Giamatti, Scoot McNairy, Lupita Nyong’o, Adepero Oduye, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt, Michael Kenneth Williams and Alfre Woodard.
- Craig Hunter
Watch an excellent new featurette from Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave starring Chiwetel Ejiofor which shows the director's vision through incredible cinematography, and his unique, free and artistic style, capturing the emotional depth of the dramatic masterpiece which we love. This outstanding cast also includes Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Lupita Nyong'o, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt and Alfre Woodard. John Ridley who wrote the screenplay based on the novel by Solomon Northrup, also gives feedback as do producers. The film opened in limited theaters on October 18th, turning in a very solid per-theater average, and we of course can highly recommend it. »
12 Years a Slave could hardly have more press going for it at this point, and by all accounts it is a film you don’t want to miss. Now, you can check out a very cool featurette that’s been put together to showcase the director’s vision. It isn’t just McQueen either, as you might expect from the title, but it’s the actors, producers, and others, giving their view of what his vision is.
If you weren’t already psyched for it, this might do the trick. Even though it isn’t that long, it gives you some serious perspective on what the film, and the director, hope to achieve, and insight into how that might be possible.
- Marc Eastman
Although it didn't crack the top 10 in its opening weekend, 12 Years a Slave earned over $923,000 from just 19 theaters, with an impressive $48,617 per-screen average. Before the heralded drama expands into more theaters on October 25, Fox Searchlight Pictures released a featurette that centers on director Steve McQueen's vision for the film. Producers Jeremy Kleiner, Dede Gardner, Bill Pohlad and cast members Lupita Nyong'o, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor and many more discuss working with this visionary filmmaker, along with behind-the-scenes footage.
12 Years a Slave is based on an incredible true story of one man's fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender) as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity. »
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