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“Ben-Hur” derailed spectacularly at the multiplexes this weekend, as the latest attempt to revive the chariot racing epic opened to an anemic $11.4 million. That’s a disastrous result for the $100 million production, putting “Ben-Hur” in the ranks of the summer’s biggest flops.
Metr0-Goldwyn-Mayer and Paramount co-produced the remake of Lew Wallace’s novel “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ”; the book was the basis for the 1959 blockbuster that followed Charlton Heston into the arena. Here Jack Huston took the reins as a Jewish prince who must exact his revenge after his adopted brother (Toby Kebbell) betrays him.
“This is the bomb of the summer,” said Jeff Bock, a box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations. “They went big and they went home.”
Although MGM put up roughly 80% of the budget for the film, its failure will be felt at Paramount. The studio has had a bad streak at the box office of late, »
- Brent Lang
Casting is a hugely important part of the filmmaking process. Unfortunately, sometimes Hollywood gets it very wrong. When the wrong person gets the part, it can spoil the whole movie. Here are eight instances where bad casting damaged a big movie.
Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequel trilogy: This bit of bad casting not only ruined a film, it wrecked three films. While the Star Wars prequels had numerous problems, the worst was the portrayal of iconic villain Darth Vader—Aka Anakin Skywalker—as a sulky, petulant teenager. Christensen’s bland performance made the problem 10-times worse. How do you follow the voice of James Earl Jones with the whiny voice of Christensen? He also had no chemistry at all with his co-star and love-interest Natalie Portman, who played Queen Amidala.
- email@example.com (Rob Young)
Living legend Michael Caine returned to portray Arthur Tressler in this summer's sequel Now You See Me 2, the follow-up to 2013's surprise hit Now You See Me. Now that its theatrical run has come to an end, fans will be able to watch this comedy hiest adventure on Digital HD starting today, ahead of its Blu-ray and DVD release on September 6. To get fans ready for this sequel's home video release, we have an exclusive Blu-ray preview with Michael Caine's co-stars Lizzy Caplan and Daniel Radcliffe revealing how much they admire this iconic actor.
The preview, which comes from Lionsgate Home Entertainment, features Lizzy Caplan calling her co-star a worldwide treasure, while Daniel Radcliffe marvels at how enthusiastic the actor still is about acting and filmmaking in general. Daniel Radcliffe also adds that his co-star's "general attitude" is something he aspires to. We also hear from the man himself, »
In an effort to both serve our readers and help support The A.V. Club, we are going to post daily links to deals and interesting items that we find over on Amazon. If you use these links to click through and buy something—not just the thing you clicked—on Amazon, we will see a portion of that income. You don’t have to do that if you don’t want to, but if you do, know that we appreciate it.
Mevo live event camera for iPhone and iPad ($399.99)
Want to give your Facebook Live broadcasts a professional air? The Mevo lets you zoom, pan, and cut, all while streaming.
American Ultra, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation (free with Prime membership)
- Marah Eakin
Long before ordering Miles Teller and Jonah Hill off to the front lines, The Hangover director Todd Phillips came close to enlisting Shia Labeouf and Batman V Superman star Jesse Eisenberg for his gleefully over-the-top action comedy, War Dogs.
Opening in theaters today, August 19, Phillips revealed to Cinema Blend that the thriller formerly known as Arms and the Dudes originally had Labeouf attached to the part of vain gunrunner Efraim Diveroli, with Eisenberg slotting into the role of his partner-in-war-crime, David Packouz.
So, what changed? According to Phillips, a deal didn’t stick, though considering that both he and screenwriters Stephen Chin and Jason Smilovic wrote the script with Jonah Hill in mind, it would appear things worked out for the best.
Just to speak to that first part, [Jesse Eisenberg and Shia Labeouf] were attached for a moment, and then we ended up pushing the movie an entire year and both guys became unavailable. »
- Michael Briers
Todd Phillips‘ War Dogs might become one of the summer’s few pleasant surprises. Critics are somewhat mixed on the film, but the reviews are far more positive than what we read for The Hangover sequels, and they’re about on par with the reviews for Phillips’ Old School, Starsky & Hutch, and Road Trip, his more well-liked movies. Jonah Hill is receiving praise for his […]
- Jack Giroux
When it comes to Batman V Superman, two things that had passionate fans and scornful dissenters agreeing was that Ben Affleck rocked it as Batman/Bruce Wayne and that Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor was…yeah. However, one character’s interpretation that still has each camp throwing tomatoes at each other is Superman/Clark Kent (Henry Cavill). A lot of fans think this version is suitably... Read More »
- Matt Rooney
Looking for a little extra magic in your life? Lionsgate Home Entertainment is gearing up to release Summit's misdirection sequel, Now You See Me 2 starring Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, Daniel Radcliffe, Lizzy Caplan and Morgan Freeman, on a variety of home video formats in the coming weeks.
The Now You See Me 2 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray and DVD editions will arrive on September 6th. The Digital HD version is just around the corner with an August 19th release date.
Now You See Me 2 was a big hit at the international box office with $312.5 million to date. The original earned $351.7 million so the drop off has been minimal.
Dolby Atmos will be included on the high definition versions of Now You See Me 2. Bonus features are as follows:
Audio Commentary by Director Jon M. Chu
“The Art of the Ensemble” Featurette
Although Ben Affleck managed to win over a lot of his critics with his role as The Dark Knight in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one aspect of the character that didn’t quite sit right with some fans was the fact that Batman racked up a body count that would shame many of the villains in his Rogues Gallery.
During an interview with IGN, legendary Batman voice actor Kevin Conroy shared his thoughts on the latest big screen incarnation of The Dark Knight, and while he praised Affleck’s performance, he also stated that he “isn’t particularly comfortable” with Batman being a killer.
“Personally I love the fact that Batman – in the stories I’ve done, and the way he’s been rendered by Bruce Timm and Paul Dini, the people I’ve worked with most closely – he never kills anybody. He doesn’t cross that line. »
- Gary Collinson
As production continues on Justice League, Zack Snyder has taken to Twitter to share a new behind-the-scenes photo of Jason Momoa rocking out in full Aquaman costume, which has undergone a bit of a redesign from the one seen briefly in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice; check it out here…
Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy. Together, Batman and Wonder Woman work quickly to find and recruit a team of metahumans to stand against this newly awakened threat. But despite the formation of this unprecedented league of heroes—Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash—it may already be too late to save the planet from an assault of catastrophic proportions.
- Gary Collinson
With a seemingly endless amount of streaming options — not only the titles at our disposal, but services themselves — we’ve taken it upon ourselves to highlight the titles that have recently hit the interwebs. Every week, one will be able to see the cream of the crop (or perhaps some simply interesting picks) of streaming titles (new and old) across platforms such as Netflix, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and more (note: U.S. only). Check out our rundown for this week’s selections below.
From its first few shots, it’s clear that American Ultra is removed from the relatively grounded drama of Greg Mottola’s underrated Adventureland, the last film that paired Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart. We first meet Eisenberg’s bloodied and beaten Mike Howell detained and chained to a table in a septic interrogation room. As an agent throws photographic evidence of »
- The Film Stage
Last month, director Zack Snyder and his cast of Justice League superheroes took a break from production to pay the Hall H crowd at Comic-Con a visit, where they debuted the first trailer. Since there is still much more filming to be done, it isn't known when we'll get the next glimpse at this highly-anticipated superhero adventure, whether it be new photos or footage. To help tide fans over until the next sneak peek arrives, Warner Bros. debuted a fresh logo, which looks quite similar to the studio's Suicide Squad logo.
It's possible that all of Warner Bros.' superhero movie logos will be showcased in the same metallic style from here on out, since there are so many similarities between this logo and the Suicide Squad logo. We'll likely know for sure if the studio releases a new Wonder Woman logo, since that movie comes out a few months »
It’s fair to say that Suicide Squad has a rough old time of it since its release last week. Despite a big opening weekend, it was slammed by many critics (it now has a lower Rotten Tomatoes score than Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) and audiences haven’t taken to it either.
However it could be fueling the fire of one of the next stops in the DC Extended Universe, as Ezra Miller has said the defense behind the movie’s poor reviews by the director and cast are motivating Justice League.
“You needn’t look any further than the Suicide Squad director and cast response to the negative reviews to feel how negative critiques motivate us,” Miller, who plays The Flash, told MTV News. “Ultimately, we can’t base anything on [the critical response]. As artists, we aim to please absolutely everybody with our work, but we also know that »
- Luke Owen
It's becoming more and more common in this age of blockbuster films that we live in:
When one comes out, takes a thrashing from critics, and gets a so-so response from fans, people involved with the production start to openly gripe about things.
You start hearing about alternate cuts, deleted scenes, clashes between studio and filmmaker, and then you get actors complaining about decisions that were made during the production.
Such is now the case with Suicide Squad. The film, which many had high hopes for, was thought to be an important pivot point for the DC Extended Universe. After Zack Snyder's very serious, brooding deconstructions of Superman and Batman in the first two films of the new canon, many thought Suicide Squad would be a breath of fresh air that would bring new life into this growing DC world. Instead, it was ravaged by critics, and fans gave it only an okay CinemaScore. »
- Mario-Francisco Robles
Right now you can check out the latest film from Woody Allen, the 1930s Hollywood comedy Cafe Society starring Kristen Stewart, Jesse Eisenberg, Steve Carell and more. But this fall, the filmmaker will take you to a different era with his first ever series, which will debut exclusively on Amazon. As is customary with Woody […]
The post Woody Allen’s ‘Crisis in Six Scenes’ Amazon Series Gets a Teaser Trailer, Title and Premiere Date appeared first on /Film. »
- Ethan Anderton
Square Enix has unveiled the New York Comic-Con exclusive Play-Arts Kai Black & White Superman figure Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice; standing at 10 inches tall, the figure is limited to 1000 units and is available to pre-order now, priced $149.99; take a look below…
Superman has established himself as a shining beacon of hope for humanity. In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, he faces off against Batman, the dark hero of the DC Comics universe. We’ve highlighted the noble, classically heroic characteristics of Superman, in striking contrast with Batman’s complex dark aspect. The chest and cape utilize flexible materials, creating a wide range of motion. Superman’s iconic take-off and landing poses are easily recreated. We’ve paid special attention to the fine details, keeping close accuracy to the design of the character in the film, such as the small Kryptonian insignia etched into the waist of his suit. »
- Amie Cranswick
Hello again, dear readers. This week sees the release of Suicide Squad, the latest DC Comics film adaptation. In the meantime, the latest Trailer Trashin’ is my quick take on some of the major movie trailers to come out of the recent San Diego Comic-Con.
Premise: After Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), the world’s top neurosurgeon, is injured in a car accident that ruins his career, he sets out on a journey of healing, where he encounters the Ancient One (Tilda Swinton), who becomes Strange’s mentor in the mystic arts.
My take: After the huge superhero brawl of Captain America: Civil War earlier this summer, the next film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe takes things in a very different direction. This is an exposition-heavy trailer, laying out the basics of who Doctor Strange is and the nature of his powers to help general audiences get on-board with »
- Timothy Monforton
The actor has been in all three previous films and said that he barely got a heads up before Variety broke the news. The series was originally seen as a successor to “The Hunger Games,” but the third installment, “Allegiant,” stumbled at the box office when it hit theaters last spring.
Teller said he wasn’t sure if he’d participate in the television finale.
“I’ve talked to nobody,” Teller said. “I found out 20 minutes before Variety printed it.”
Teller’s comments mirror those of Shailene Woodley, who told press at Comic-Con last month that she hadn’t decided whether or not she would participate in the final film and that she’d been caught off guard by the news.
- Brent Lang
Last week, a report surfaced that Warner Bros.' Suicide Squad will have a post credit scene, which some found surprising since there were no end credit scenes in either Man of Steel or Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Still, given the popularity of these scenes, thanks to the meteoric rise of Marvel Studios, it's not terribly surprising that Warner Bros. chose to add an extra scene for the fans. Today we have a new report which claims to reveal what happens in this scene, which helps set up another important DC Comics adaptation. There will be Potential Spoilers below, so read on at your own risk.
While these details have not been confirmed by Warner Bros., we'll find out for sure tomorrow night after the first Thursday night sneak preview screenings. This report comes from We Got This Covered, whose source reveals that this scene features both Bruce »
Every week we dive into the cream of the crop when it comes to home releases, including Blu-ray and DVDs, as well as recommended deals of the week. Check out our rundown below and return every Tuesday for the best (or most interesting) films one can take home. Note that if you’re looking to support the site, every purchase you make through the links below helps us and is greatly appreciated.
April and the Extraordinary World (Christian Desmares and Franck Ekinci)
Most writing on Christian Desmares and Franck Ekinci‘s April and the Extraordinary World speaks as though they’ve adapted one of revered Frenchman Jacques Tardi‘s graphic novels. This isn’t quite the case. What they’ve actually done is bring his unique “universe” to life with help from previous collaborator Benjamin Legrand (writer of Tardi’s Tueur de cafards) instead. Legrand and Ekinci crafted this alternate »
- The Film Stage
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