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Shocker: Tom Cruise Exits ‘Man From U.N.C.L.E.;’ Warner Bros Recasting For Fall Start
Exclusive: Tom Cruise has exited as the lead in The Man From U.N.C.L.E., the remake of the classic TV series that Guy Ritchie will direct for Warner Bros. Cruise was scheduled to star in the film with Armie Hammer, but he has stepped out of the picture to focus on producing and starring in Mission: Impossible 5. Paramount and Skydance are now planning to begin shooting the latest installment of that franchise before year’s end. Warner Bros has a script they like, and a top director who’s expecting to direct U.N.C.L.E. in the fall. The timing proved too difficult and so Cruise stepped out to focus on M:I5. Warner Bros will now go hard looking for the lead of this movie, which is inspired by the original TV series ran from 1964-68, with Robert Vaughan and David McCallum playing Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin, »
- MIKE FLEMING JR
'Human Centipede 3' Will Likely Take Place in a Prison
Production on Tom Six's next installment in his sick saga, Human Centipede 3 (Final Sequence), began this week, and while the plot is still top-secret, the director has revealed that the sequel will feature a stitched-together monstrosity composed of over five hundred people. So where do you find such a huge collection of captive subjects? A new clue posted by JoBlo.com today has the most likely answer, confirming rumors that the film will be set in a prison. Their search led to this casting call, which posted the following info: Human Centipede 3 Theatrical, Non-Union Posted: 4/24/2013 Category Feature Film Union Status Non-Union Rate 64.00/8 Prison Inmates (Non Union) / Non-Union / "Human Centipede 3" / Background / Male / All Ethnicities / 18-65 Human Centipede 3, a horror film, is looking for gentlemen of all ages, sizes, and ethnicities to play Prison Inmates starting Thursday - May 16 in Los Angeles. These prisoners will work up to 13 Days between May »
- Gregory Burkart
What Are You Seeing This Weekend? 'Epic' Memorial Day Brings 'Fast & Furious 6,' 'The Hangover Part III' & 'Before Midnight'
There are plenty of traditions associated with Memorial Day: barbeques, the return of white pants, massive sales, and, of course, the release of long-awaited blockbuster flicks. We get two this weekend, both hailing from impressively resilient franchises. Plus, there's the highly anticipated next chapter in the "Before [insert time of day]" series. But maybe you're not a sequel person, in which case you can indulge in a 3D animated feature for the kiddies (in all of us), probing documentaries, dark comedies, and a biopic. Because what's more American than variety? Happy Memorial Day, cinephiles: let us know how you'll be celebrating at the theaters! "Fast & Furious 6." Directed by Justin Lin. Starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez, Gina Carano, Luke Evans, Jordana Brewster, Sung Kang, Ludacris, Tyrese Gibson, Gal Gadot, Joe Taslim, and Shea Whigham. Our review: "While there's a lot of fun to be had, 'Furious 6' »
- Emma Bernstein
Chris O’Dowd & Aziz Ansari Talk Epic, Improvising, Thor: The Dark World, Ansari’s Scripts, Ice Age 4: Continental Drift and Michele Bachmann
For the record, Chris O’Dowd and Aziz Ansari, I was totally onto you. Appropriately, the comedy duo serves as Epic’s comedic relief, Grub (O’Dowd) the snail and Mub (Ansari) the slug. When Grub isn’t dreaming of joining the ranks of the Leaf Men and Mub isn’t hitting on Mary Katherine (voice by Amanda Seyfried), the pair is in charge of keeping a very special little pod moist. It sounds like a silly job, but if that pod doesn’t bloom in the moonlight, the entire forest could wilt at the hands of the leader of the Boggans, Mandrake (voiced by Christoph Waltz). When Ansari wasn’t rising to the challenge and seeing how many times he could squeeze Ice Age 4: Continental Drift into a single interview, we discussed how they fleshed out their characters while the animators put the world of Epic together, to Ansari’s amusement, »
- Perri Nemiroff
Watch: Four New Clips From 'Arrested Development' Find Gob Tending Bees and Lindsay Letting Go of Material Things
This Sunday, May 26 at 12:01am Pt, 15 new episodes of "Arrested Development" go live on Netflix, and plenty of people are ready to settle in for hours and binge-watch the lot of them, show creator Mitchell Hurwitz's advice to the contrary be damned. Until then, though, Netflix has been pretty stingy about the details of the new season, with cast members like Jessica Walter watching their words when talking about the installments and the trailer foremost serving as a reminder that all of the main characters are returning. The company released four new short clips today, which you can watch below, and while they don't offer much more by way of hints about what's to come, they provide an assurance that the show's sense of humor hasn't gotten any less odd in its time off the air. »
- Alison Willmore
Film Reviews: Opening This Week (May 20-24, 2013)
A critical digest of the week’s latest U.S. theatrical releases. Where applicable, links to longer reviews have been provided.
Fast & Furious 6
That increasingly rare Hollywood franchise in which the heroes sport street clothes instead of spandex, Universal’s “Fast and Furious” shifts into sixth gear with few evident signs of engine wear. Mounted on an even larger scale than 2011’s epic (and massively profitable) “Fast Five,” this series swan song for helmer Justin Lin (on board since 2006’s “Tokyo Drift”) ups its own ante on balletic vehicular mayhem and international intrigue, while mending some loose narrative ends and unfurling others. Faithful fans and passersby alike should be more than pleased by this superior piece of classical action craftsmanship, which looks to meet or exceed its predecessor’s nitrous-boosted $626 million global take.
— Scott Foundas
Read the full review
Distributor: 21st Century Fox
The most questionable thing about “Epic, »
- Variety Staff
Horrors Abound in New Motion Poster for Carrie
Just in time for the holiday weekend, Screen Gems has released a new motion poster for director Kimberly Peirce’s (Boys Don’t Cry) adaptation of the Stephen King novel Carrie. For those unfamiliar, the film revolves around a young girl (Chloe Grace Moretz) who discovers she has telekinetic powers and who is abused at home by her ultra-religious mother (Julianne Moore) and tormented at school by her peers. This motion poster shows flashes of some of the more horror-infused scenes that were gleaned in the recent theatrical trailer, but the crux of the poster boasts a twist on the famous line, “Keep Calm and Carrie On.” Hit the jump to check out the motion poster. The film also stars Judy Greer, Portia Doubleday, Ansel Elgort, Alex Russell, and Gabriella Wilde. Carrie opens on October 18th. Via the film’s Tumblr page. Here’s the official synopsis for Carrie: A »
- Adam Chitwood
Meet Andrea Riseborough: Rising Star of 'W.E.,' 'Oblivion,' 'Shadow Dancer,' 'Birdman' (Exclusive Video)
I like meeting actors for the first time, when their careers are starting to take off, before they've erected that protective coating that movie stars often need to survive. I was curious to check out Andrea Riseborough, especially, because she's one of those actresses--much like Meryl Streep-- who vanishes into every role. She's a chameleon, utterly unrecognizable from one movie to the next. She explains why in our flip cam interview below. Like most folks, I first discovered the Brit stage actress in 2011 as Wallis Simpson in Madonna's "W.E.," and was astonished at how she not only embodied this familiar woman but carried the film, which was critically drubbed, but Riseborough emerged unscathed. Casting directors have jumped on the Rada-trained actress, who is now 31 and lives in Boise, Idaho with her artist boyfriend. This spring she's starred in back-to-back movies "Disconnect," "Welcome to the Punch," replaced Jessica Chastain »
- Anne Thompson
Study Claims There's A Significant Gender Divide In Film Criticism
When you read a film review, do you pay close attention to the byline? Does the gender of the critic alter how you feel about the film, or the review? And do you only read reviews by critics of a certain gender? These are some of the questions being bandied around thanks to the results of a San Diego State University study claiming that men continue to .dominate. the field of film criticism and, in turn, tend to gravitate toward films that are written and/or directed by other men. THR shares a few of the study.s most interesting (and controversial) findings, while acknowledging that the study.s window of observation only took place over a two-month period this past spring. Over that time period, Martha Lauzen used Rotten Tomatoes to track more than 2,000 reviews written by the sites .Top Critics.. Her findings included: - Men account for 78% of »
Watch: A Gorgeous, Lyrical Trailer for 'Ain't Them Bodies Saints,' Starring Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara
David Lowery's "Ain't Them Bodies Saints" finally has a trailer, so that everyone who wasn't lucky enough to see it at Sundance or at Cannes, where it's coming off a set of special screenings as part of Critics' Week, can get a hint of what the fuss is about. The film is set in Texas Hill Country in the 1970s and stars Casey Affleck as an outlaw who escapes from prison in hopes of reuniting with his wife (Rooney Mara) and the child he's never met. Reviewing the film at Sundance, Eric Kohn wrote that "As beautifully shot as it is performed by its two leads, 'Ain't Them Bodies Saints' channels genre expectations into sheer poetry." The lyrical trailer, below, highlights some of that poetry in its magic hour gorgeousness -- the film will open in theaters on August 16, courtesy of IFC Films. »
- Alison Willmore
Watch: Trailer For Powerful Documentary 'The Act Of Killing'
Hailed as an incredible piece of documentary work, Joshua Oppenheimer’s “The Act of Killing” -- after hitting festivals in the past year including Telluride, Toronto, Berlin, Sydney and more -- is on its way to theaters and a brand new trailer has arrived.Presented by Errol Morris and Werner Herzog (no slouches in the field themselves), this imaginative documentary explores the celebrity status of death squad leaders in Indonesia. The film studies the men behind countless killings by presenting them with the task of recreating their killings in the style of the American movies they love so much. It's chilling and powerful stuff, and our own Jessica Kiang saw the film earlier this year and hailed it as "a towering achievement in filmmaking, documentary or otherwise." You can read her full review here -- quoted in the banner for the movie over at Apple -- and it really highlights »
- Jason McDonald
Rockstar Games Announces Special Edition and Collector’s Edition for Grand Theft Auto V
Most A-list games now come with special editions and collector's editions. The special edition costs a little bit more, and throws in some nice gameplay perks with a little swag. The collector's edition costs a lot more, comes with everything the special edition has, more gameplay stuff, and then throws in even more swag. Grand Theft Auto V is no exception. Everyone who pre-orders will get access to the "Atomic Blimp". The special edition comes with a steelbook case, blueprint map, stunt plane, special ability boost, additional weapons, and bonus outfits, tattoos, etc. The collector's edition comes with all that stuff along with a New Era "Los Santos" cap, a security deposit bag with logo key, unique vehicles and garage, and custom characters (e.g. Niko Bellic from Grand Theft Auto IV). Hit the jump to see images of the editions and for the press release, which contains more details »
- Matt Goldberg
Tom Cruise drops out of 'Man from U.N.C.L.E.'
Even tallest-building-in-the-world-climber action star Tom Cruise has his limits. The guy cannot be in two places at once. Cruise was set to star in the Warner Bros. big screen adaptation of 1960s spy series Man from U.N.C.L.E., but his role as another secret agent in another franchise based on a mid-century TV show is getting in the way. He has dropped out of Man from U.N.C.L.E. due to Mission: Impossible 5 scheduling, EW has confirmed. Deadline first reported the news.
This isn’t the first time the long-in-development Man from U.N. »
- Emily Rome
Aziz Ansari (Sorta) Went Back To School To Prep For 'Epic' Role
The new 3-D computer animated film "Epic" tells the story of a battle between the (very small) forces of good and evil in nature, where the very life of a forest hangs in the balance. It features the voices of Amanda Seyfried, Jason Sudeikis, Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, Christoph Waltz, Aziz Ansari, Chris O'Dowd, Beyonce Knowles, Steven Tyler and Pitbull.
In the movie, Ansari plays a cocky slug named Mub; O'Dowd is his brave snail sidekick, Grub. Together they form a comedy team in the grand tradition of animated duos like Timon and Pumbaa, Buzz and Woody, and Shrek and Donkey.
Though he brings a lot of funny to "Epic," Ansari described his serious (and very made-up) preparation for the role. "Pitbull and I took a few classes at a nearby university to learn as much as we could about the insect world," he told MTV News. "We learned quite a bit. »
- Tami Katzoff
Bagged and Boarded Comic Reviews: Corey Taylor, 'True Blood,' Dinosaurs, Ninjas and More!
New comic book Wednesday has come and gone. The dust at your local comic shop has settled. An eerie silence descends as you finish reading your last superhero book of the week. Now it's time for something a little more sinister. Welcome to Bagged and Boarded: comic reviews of the sick, spooky, twisted and terrifying!
House of Gold and Bones Pt. 2 of 4
The dream-like comic House of Gold and Bones is back this week with an even more dizzying and strange installment. Corey Taylor (the Slipknot and Stone Sour frontman himself) weaves a tale of a nameless, lost man in a world full of strange landscapes and savage people. This week our hero runs from those who would do him harm and comes upon some help in a dark forest. Here he learns more about "The Conflagration," a strange event that he may have to take part in. Bag it or board it up? »
- Giaco Furino
First Official Look At Naomi Watts As Princess Diana
The Cannes Film Festival is in full swing, kicking up news of upcoming productions as well as their promotional pics. Among these is the one seen above, which features Naomi Watts as the beloved Princess Diana from the biopic titled Diana (formerly Caught in Flight). Though we've seen several unofficial shots of Watts in princess mode before, this image is the one that's meant to tantalize on-the-fence distributors to pick up the curious drama about the late royal's final years. And it seems to be working. Deadline reports Entertainment One has snatched up Diana's U.S. distribution rights, which means those curious in the colonies could see the Oliver Hirschbiegel-directed pic by year's end, just in time for award season. eOne also picked up rights to distribute with major releases in the UK, Canada, and Spain. Penned by The Libertine playwright/screenwriter Stephen Jeffreys, Diana follows the Princess of »
Natalie Portman’s ‘Jane Got A Gun’ Heading For U.S. Sale
The deal came together after footage was shown at Cannes this week. The companies had no comment, but an informed source confirmed the talks.
CAA is repping domestic rights and Exclusive Media is selling international rights to “Jane” at Cannes.
Gavin O’Connor directed “Jane,” replacing Lynne Ramsay as director on the indie Western. Ramsay departed in March just before shooting was to start in New Mexico.
- Dave McNary
Watch: First Trailer for Lyrical Western 'Ain't Them Bodies Saints,' Starring Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara
The first trailer for David Lowery's lyrical Western and festival favorite "Ain't Them Bodies Saints" has landed. The film, which hits theaters August 16 and VOD August 23 via IFC Films, stars Casey Affleck, Rooney Mara and Ben Foster in a tale centered on an outlaw's dangerous ordeal to reunite with his wife and child. Watch below. Check out our Toh! interview with director Lowery, and our review and roundup out of Sundance when the film first premiered. The film had its European unveiling at Cannes earlier this week. Nate Parker and Keith Carradine co-star. Here's a more detailed synopsis:Bob Muldoon (Casey Affleck) and Ruth Guthrie (Rooney Mara), an impassioned young outlaw couple on an extended crime spree, are finally apprehended by lawmen after a shootout in the Texas hills. Although Ruth wounds a local officer, Bob takes the blame. But four years later, Bob escapes from prison and sets out »
- Beth Hanna
Well Go USA Acquires Filipino Thriller 'On The Job' Ahead of Its Cannes Premiere
Ahead of its world premiere in the Director's Fortnight at Cannes today, Well Go USA has acquired all North American rights to "On The Job." Directed by Erik Matti, the Filipino crime thriller was inspired by a real-life scandal in which prison inmates were temporarily released from prison to work as contract killers on behalf of corrupt politicians. The cast includes many of the country's most popular mainstream actors, including Piolo Pascual and Gerald Anderson. "'On The Job' reiterates that it is an exciting time for Filipino cinema," said Doris Pfardrescher, President, Well Go USA Entertainment. "We are thrilled we were able to acquire the movie before its premiere in Cannes and can’t wait to bring it to audiences in North America." Following its premiere on the Croisette, Well Go USA plan to theatrically release the film stateside in the fall. "All the hard work and patience has paid off, »
- Clint Holloway
Whither Women Film Critics? Study Says 78% of Film Critics Are Male, 22% Female
Yet another fascinating if depressing report from Martha M. Lauzen looks at, among other things, the percentages of women film critics as compared to their male counterparts. The numbers don't lie: In Spring of 2013 (i.e. right now), 78% of top critics (as defined by guidelines laid out by Rotten Tomatoes, below) are male, with only 22% female. The essay goes on to look at three perceptions about gender in popular film criticism, and then the realities. Highlights below. The purpose of the study: In an effort to better understand how gender may influence popular film criticism, this study tracked over 2,000 reviews penned by 145 writers designated as “top critics” on the film review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes over a two-month period in the spring of 2013. The study examined the percentages of male and female critics, the numbers of reviews they wrote during that period, and the length and nature of their reviews. »
- Anne Thompson and Beth Hanna
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