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‘Star Wars’ Provides Disney with a ‘Huge Opportunity’
Walt Disney Studios is quick to admit it doesn’t have an awareness problem with “Star Wars” when it starts releasing new movies, beginning with next year’s “Episode VII.” But it also knows the future of the franchise at the Mouse House, however, relies on getting the film right for fans and newcomers.
“This title is very well known out there,” and “the single most important thing is to make sure that this movie is great,” said Walt Disney Studios president Alan Bergman, on Wednesday, at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2014 Media, Communications & Entertainment conference.
But with a new animated series, “Star Wars Rebels” debuting on Disney Xd, an expanded merchandise program, and the first live action film to debut in theaters in 10 years next year, »
- Marc Graser
Patricia Arquette goes supporting at Oscars for 'Boyhood' (Exclusive)
A rep for IFC films has confirmed exclusively to Gold Derby that Patricia Arquette ("Boyhood") will compete in the Oscar race for Best Supporting Actress instead of lead. It was a tough decision. Arquette has so much screen time and such strong emotional impact upon viewers that the film could have been called "Motherhood," but it's really the core story of a boy growing up in a fractured family over 12 years. Over the past month, Gold Derby has featured Arquette as a prediction option in both races, resulting in a clear preference by our Experts, Editors and Users. In the lead race, she's currently ranked eighth, but in supporting, she's way out front to win with the backing of 12 our 16 Experts. See our official racetrack odds. -Break- Oscars Poll: Who's Really more overdue, Amy Adams or Julianne Moore? Of course, Oscar voters have the option of ignoring the IFC Films »
One Japanese film in Tokyo competition
In an early announcement, the 27th Tokyo International Film Festival (Tiff) has revealed Japanese film Pale Moon will be the only local film in Competition this year.
Directed by Daihachi Yoshida, award-winning filmmaker of The Kirishima Thing, Pale Moon will receive its world premiere at the festival, which runs Oct 23-31.
The rest of Tiff’s line-up will be announced Sept 30.
Yoshi Yatabe, programming director of Tiff’s International Competition section, said: “It was fate when the director Daihachi Yoshida, who is always careful to portray a character attractively, encountered the actress Rie Miyazawa.
“In Pale Moon, Miyazawa performed perfectly in the role of a woman who experiences liberation from suppression and downfall. The chemistry between the director and the star created this year’s representative »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jean Noh)
Yahoo: UK needs cinema-going evolution
Yahoo executives discuss film audiences.
Yahoo’s head of entertainment Michael Pennington has warned that the UK needs an “evolution in the cinema-going experience” if it is to draw bigger audiences to cinemas.
Pennington was speaking alongside Yahoo’s research director Patrick Hourihan and Paramount Pictures UK’s head of digital Katie Khan at an event in London.
The executives were sanguine about the potential for growth in the UK market but cautioned that the market must make strides in key areas.
“The problem isn’t that stories aren’t being told, but the way that they’re being told isn’t attracting audiences,” said Pennington.
“I think we need an evolution in the cinema-going experience. The average UK citizen goes to the cinema 2.8 times a year. That’s not much. That means there’s a wealth of amazing stories people aren’t seeing.”
Pennington’s comments come at a time when box office is suffering in the »
First look: Dax Shepard in 'The Judge' and 'This Is Where I Leave You'
In between his work on the final season of Parenthood and writing the script for his upcoming CHiPs remake, Dax Shepard stayed busy, shooting The Judge and This Is Where I Leave You at the same time. Playing a young lawyer alongside Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall in one, and a jerk radio host alongside Jason Bateman and Tina Fey in the other, Shepard didn’t originally plan on starring in either of the films. But after one email and a few auditions for The Judge and one favor and a table read for This Is Where I Leave You, »
- Samantha Highfill
New Interstellar Poster Finally Features the Beauty of the Cosmos and a Positive Tagline
Another Interstellar poster has gone online, and it's the prettiest of the bunch so far. The film stars Matthew McConaughey and revolves around a group of explorers who make use of a newly discovered wormhole “to surpass the limitations on human space travel and conquer the vast distances involved in an interstellar voyage.” The most recent trailer gave us a hint of how gorgeous the space scenes will be, and this poster is another glimpse at that promise. It also doesn't have a tagline that mixes the hope of discovery with the reminder that we're all going to die unless we leave Earth. Hit the jump to check out the new Interstellar poster. The film opens in 2D and IMAX on November 7th, and also stars Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Casey Affleck, Michael Caine, David Oyelowo, Wes Bentley, John Lithgow, Ellen Burstyn, Topher Grace, David Gyasi, Mackenzie Foy, Bill Irwin, »
- Matt Goldberg
Denmark enters Sorrow and Joy to Oscar race
Best Foreign-Language Film Academy Award submissions 2015
The Danish Oscar Committee chose the film directed by Nils Malmros from a shortlist that also included Niels Arden Oplev’s Speed Walking (Kapgang) and Pernille Fischer Christensen’s Someone You Love (En du elsker).
“It was a difficult decision, with three very personal films from well-known directors were are proud of, but it was an unanimous choice” said committee chairman Henrik Bo Nielsen, MD of the Danish Film Institute.
“After a long career, Malmros is still a strong narrator, who dares stand out – he is not afraid of approaching taboos, he deals with universal themes and gently touches us all.”
Launched at last year’s Rome Film Festival, Sorrow and [link »
- email@example.com (Jorn Rossing Jensen)
Bob Palmer, Longtime Publicist, Dies at 85
Bob Palmer — who, through a 60-year career as a publicist, represented clients including Anthony Hopkins and Dick Van Dyke as well as some of the most popular TV shows of the 1960s and 70s — died Monday at his home in Pacific Palisades of natural causes. He was 85.
After working for ABC and several major studios, Palmer started his own firm in 1979, representing Hopkins, Van Dyke, Faye Dunaway, Sada Thompson, David Soul, Peter Strauss, Michele Lee and Larry Schiller Prods., the latter of which produced the TV movie “The Executioner’s Song.” Palmer for a time represented Hopkins as a manager, and created the 1992 Academy Award campaign for Hopkins’ performance in “The Silence of the Lambs,” for which he won the Oscar for best actor.
In an interview, Hopkins said he first met Palmer while doing a publicity junket in 1973 at the Century Plaza Hotel, and afterward they became “very good friends. »
- Ted Johnson
Interstellar App Lets You Create Your own Solar System; Check out Images from the Mobile Game
Studios using apps to market their movie is now standard these days. The question isn't how well an app sells a movie. I don't know how much of a film's profits are derived from creating an infinite runner loosely based on a movie's plot. The question to ask is, "Is the app fun?" An Interstellar app is being released today in-browser and as a free app in the Google Play store, and it comes as a free app to iOS next week. The game uses bits of the film's science to handle space travel, but a large part of the app seems to be about creating your own solar system, planets, stars, and asteroids, and sharing it with friends. The primary goal is to see how far the player can explore before running out of fuel. The press release also details some of the other features, and it sounds like this game could be addictive. »
- Matt Goldberg
Film Review: ‘In the Crosswind’
Offering a unique take on the moving picture, “In the Crosswind” is a black-and-white slice of history that mixes live-action with living tableaux to provide a requiem for the inhabitants of the Baltic countries who, in the summer of 1941, were deported to Siberia or killed on Stalin’s orders.; the extraordinary visual techniques he uses to convey a sense of being frozen in time won’t be to all tastes, but those open to a different sort of cinema will find it a very poignant experience.
Although the film depicts events from more than seven decades ago, the recent Russian annexation of Crimea lends it a sense of urgency. If history truly does consist of patterns that repeat themselves, then “In the Crosswind” serves as a timely warning.
Through well-modulated voiceover narration, the pic adopts the perspective of a pretty Estonian wife and mother, Erna (Laura Peterson), whose Siberian diary, »
- Alissa Simon
Exclusive: First Listen, Artwork And Tracklist For Soundtrack To Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'Birdman'
In our review out of the Venice Film Festival for Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Birdman," we noted the "dazzling" camerawork by Emmanuel Lubezki that renders much of the movie in one continuous shot (with the help of some careful editing). And while that, along with Michael Keaton's comeback performance, will likely be a big part of the conversation around the movie this fall, the film's music will be worth paying close attention to as well. We said the movie was "brilliantly scored" by Antonio Sanchez, and today we have an early, exclusive listen to his work in the film. Both the "Strut (Part II)" and "Doors And Distance" reveal Sanchez's jazzy compositions for the film, which are immediate and invigorating. And given airy, spacious productions, the tunes are infused with some terrific life, bouncing and moving in a manner that sticks with Iñárritu's visually and »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Dan Harmon on Watching Himself in ‘Harmontown’
Those who watch “Harmontown,” the Neil Berkeley documentary on controversial “Community” creator Dan Harmon, certainly learn a lot about the showrunner — but it ultimately may have been Harmon himself who learned the most from the film.
Harmon and Berkeley talked about the documentary, which follows Harmon as he tours the country with his podcast after being fired from “Community” in 2012, at a screening and Q&A at the WGA Theater in Beverly Hills Wednesday night. Harmon noted that the documentary focused on plenty of his low points — including drinking moonshine on stage and getting in fights with his then-girlfriend, now fiancé, podcaster Erin McGathy.
“You don’t see me rise back up in that movie,” said Harmon. “You see me realize that I’m a big baby and you see me realize that I can’t be a man.”
According to the “Community” creator, seeing himself interact with his girlfriend »
- Alex Stedman
The Oscar race takes shape: Sure things, contenders, and wild cards
It’s September, so why wouldn’t we start predicting an Oscar race that won’t finish for another five months?
To be fair, Venice, Telluride, and the Toronto film festivals have all concluded. Many films have screened. Many films have connected with audiences, and a rough draft of the Oscar race is beginning to come into focus. Sure, no Academy member will even begin popping in those screener DVDs for another couple of months, but it’s still worth discussing what has buzz and what is likely to still be on voters’ minds once the weather finally begins to cool off. »
- Nicole Sperling
Denmark Submits ‘Sorrow And Joy’ For Foreign-Language Oscar Campaign
The committee, made up of Danish Film Institute and local film industry orgs, selected Nils Malmros’s “Sorrow and Joy” over Niels Arden Oplev’s “Speed Walking” and Pernille Fischer Christensen’s “Someone You Love” which had been shortlisted.
The movie, sold by TrustNordisk, world-premiered at Rome to warm reviews and had a healthy run at the Danish box office, selling 272,000 tickets since its Nov. 2013 release.
Pic turns on the tragic story of Johannes and his wife Signe, who killed the couple’s young child in a psychotic fit. “Sorrow and Joy” depicts the couple’s struggle to continue loving each other and surviving their loss.
“It has been a difficult decision. These are three very personal films by directors who are very well known and who we can be proud of, »
- Elsa Keslassy
Kate Mara Orbits Ridley Scott's 'The Martian' & 'Inherent Vice' Star Katherine Waterston Joins 'Queen of Earth'
Ridley Scott makes new movies faster than you change underpants. And these aren't little indies knocked out on weekends. With his big biblical epic "Exodus: Gods And Kings" headed to theaters by the end of the year, he'll spend the fall switching gears entirely, making the sci-fi "The Martian." Matt Damon will star, and probably Jessica Chastain and Kristen Wiig (though the trades can't decide if they are in the movie, out of the movie or still tentative). And now another actress is perusing a contract. "House Of Cards" and "The Fantastic Four" star Kate Mara has been offered a role in the movie, and....that's the only news there is. No details on the part. The project is sounds promising, centering on a stranded astronaut on Mars, who must figure out a way to get back home to Earth. It has a script by Drew Goddard, based on the book by Andy Weir, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Lionsgate Hires DreamWorks Branding Exec to Grow ‘Hunger Games,’ ‘Divergent’
Lionsgate has hired Kerry Phelan, former head of consumer products and licensing for DreamWorks Animation, to the newly-created position of exec VP of global franchise management and strategic partnerships.
The hire comes as the studio focuses on exploiting its key franchises — “The Hunger Games” and “Divergent.”
Phelan has been involved with the “Star Wars,” “Shrek” and Lego brands. Lionsgate noted that while at DreamWorks Animation, she significantly increased that studio’s consumer products revenue and expanded DreamWorks’ location-based entertainment operations into Singapore, Brazil, Australia and other international markets.
“With her track record of cultivating some of the biggest brands in motion picture history, Kerry is ideally qualified to develop and execute retail, merchandising and location-based entertainment initiatives for Lionsgate’s growing portfolio of franchises,” said Palen. “From Lego to Star Wars and Pixar to DreamWorks, she has established herself as »
- Dave McNary
Wilmer Valderrama and John Murdy Talk From Dusk Till Dawn Maze at Universal Studios Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights
Bringing together the sickest minds in horror to immerse guests in a living, breathing, three-dimensional world of terror, Halloween Horror Nights, held at Universal Studios Hollywood on select nights from September 19th through November 2nd, has become one of the most popular ways to celebrate Halloween and all things scary. Featuring an all-new slate of seven film production quality mazes (The Walking Dead, Alien vs. Predator, From Dusk Till Dawn, An American Werewolf in London, Syfy’s Face Off, Dracula Untold and Clowns 3D with music by Slash), five frightful scare zones (The Purge: Anarchy, The Walking Dead, Mask-a-Raid, Dark Christmas and Skullz) and the fully re-imagined Terror Tram: Invaded by The Walking Dead experience, it will be more chilling, more terrorizing and more extreme than ever. Collider was recently given the opportunity to tour the From Dusk Till Dawn maze, which brings many of the shows key visual moments to life. »
- Christina Radish
Tour iconic New York City 'Ghostbusters' spots with Ernie Hudson
Ghostbusters is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, and while the franchise’s future may be nebulous at the moment, its place in movie history is unquestionable. To honor the film’s legacy, EW’s Kyle Ryan took a tour of New York City according to Ghostbusters with Winston Zeddemore himself, Ernie Hudson.
Along the way, Hudson shared memories from working on certain key scenes, like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man’s march into Columbus Circle, the destruction of 55 Central Park West, and the famous opening at the New York Public Library.
“We made New York a safer place,” Hudson says, »
- Jonathon Dornbush
Batman V Superman Video Sends the Batmobile on a Chase
The past week, Batman v Superman news has been all about the Batmobile, and that trend continues with new video. Instagram user shiva_honey captured some video of the Batmobile speeding down the street in a high speed chase, and I have to say I'm impressed. It's a big, clunky vehicle and yet it handles corner without missing a beat. However, I love the second video where the Batmobile is presumable returning to its starting point, and the music overlaying the return is Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice". It would amuse me to no end if they used that music in the movie by having Batman playing it on the radio. You can still fight crime while listening to Doggystyle. Hit the jump to check out the Batman v Superman Batmobile video. The film stars Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Jesse Eisenberg, Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne, Jason Momoa, »
- Matt Goldberg
Tom Sizemore Launches Crowdfunding Campaign For Detroit-Set Thriller He’ll Star In & Produce
Tom Sizemore has taken to crowdfunding platform Indiegogo to raise funds for his passion project An Honest Crime, a noir-ish thriller that the Heat and Saving Private Ryan actor is putting together as a starring vehicle. It’s his first film as a producer and a step toward rebuilding his up-and-down career following a public relapse in January, but Sizemore says he has refocused his sights on sobriety and is optimistic. “I want to get back,” he said over the phone Wednesday. “I want to make something I look forward to.”
An Honest Crime is written by the actor’s younger brother Aaron Sizemore and tracks three outcasts who plot to steal a prized baseball card collection from a local pawnbroker. Belgian helmer Giorgio Serafini (Gente Di Mare) is attached to direct the pic, which is set in Sizemore’s hometown of Detroit and will film on location. Sizemore will play Danny St. »
- Jen Yamato
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