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Friday Box Office: The Hobbit 3 Stays on Top; Night At The Museum 3 and Annie Battle for Second

2 hours ago

On a week that focused more on the film audiences won’t be able to see this Christmas rather than the handful that they will, The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies remained the clear box office leader.  After posting a strong debut of $24.4 million on Wednesday, The Hobbit 3 added another $9.9 million on Thursday (down almost 60%), for a two-day total of $34.4 million.  That’s a bit under projections but, even so, with an estimated $16.5 million from 3,875 locations yesterday, director Peter Jackson’s final trip to Middle Earth had no trouble staying ahead of two new family-themed holiday releases.  Fox’s Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb came in second on Friday with a reported $5.6 million from 3,785 locations – just ahead of Sony’s remake of Annie.  Despite being part of the now-infamous studio hack that claimed the box office life of Sony’s The Interview, Annie over-performed yesterday with an estimated $5.3 million from 3,116 locations. »

- Nicole Pedersen

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Jamie Foxx, Rose Byrne and Quvenzhane Wallis Talk Annie, the Fun Shoot, Collaborating with Will Gluck, Embarrassing Moments on Set, and More

2 hours ago

Now playing in theaters is Will Gluck‘s modern reimagining of the Broadway classic Annie.  The film stars Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) in the title role as a young, happy, street-tough foster kid living with the mean Miss Hannigan (Cameron Diaz) who is taken in by New York mayoral candidate Will Stacks (Jamie Foxx) in a thinly veiled campaign move.  The film also stars Rose ByrneBobby CannavaleAdewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, and David Zayas.  For more on Annie, watch the trailer, five clips and eleven minutes of behind-the-scenes footage, or read Matt's review. At the New York City press day I landed an exclusive video interview with Jamie Foxx, Rose Byrne and Quvenzhane Wallis.  They talked about collaborating with Will Gluck, how much fun they had making the film, embarrassing moments on set, and a lot more.  Hit the jump to watch.  Jamie Foxx, Rose Byrne and Quvenzhane Wallis: Some shoots are tough. »

- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub

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Top 5: Sony Cancels The Interview, The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies, Star Trek 3 Director Shortlist, Knight Of Cups, 10 Underrated Films of 2014

2 hours ago

Return readers will remember that I used each October installment to recommend a horror film that I thought you may have missed for one reason or another. I'll do something similar this week with a Christmas movie that I think is worth your time if you find yourself looking for a new seasonal favorite. Since seeing it in theaters in 2007, writer/director Preston A. Whitmore II's This Christmas has become annual holiday viewing at my house. Starring Idris Elba, Mekhi Phifer, Delroy Lindo, and Loretta Devine, the film hits every beat you can ask for in a Christmas movie: siblings returning home from separate parts of the country to celebrate the holiday together, finding romance with a person from your past, helping an estranged member of your family out of a life-threatening jam, pre-loathsome Chris Brown absolutely slaying a Christmas number at open mic night when no one in »

- Jason Barr

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Chris Pine, Anna Kendrick, Emily Blunt, James Corden, James Lapine and Rob Marshall Talk Into The Woods, Casting, the Rehearsal Process, “Tinderella” and More

2 hours ago

Twenty-seven years after Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s musical Into the Woods premiered on Broadway, the piece is making its was to the big screen.  The story centers on the Baker (James Corden) and his Wife (Emily Blunt) who so desperately want to have a child, but come to realize that they can’t unless they reverse The Witch’s (Meryl Streep) curse.  Meanwhile, elsewhere in the kingdom, Cinderella (Anna Kendrick) is busy slaving away for her wicked stepmother (Christine Baranski) while dreaming of attending the King’s festival and dancing before The Prince (Chris Pine). With Into the Woods making its way into theaters on Christmas Day, Corden, Blunt, Pine, Kendrick, Lapine and director Rob Marshall all came to New York City to participate in a press conference.  The group discussed the unique layers of the characters, the challenges of making a movie musical, the extensive rehearsal process and loads more. »

- Perri Nemiroff

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Geek Gifts: Baby Groot Hot Toys Collectible Offers the Most Detailed Version Yet

2 hours ago

As soon as audiences saw Guardians of the Galaxy opening weekend, fans were clamoring to own a dancing Baby Groot of their own.  Production on the collectible took a while, as director James Gunn opted not to have the toys manufactured in advance for fear of having the character’s fate spoiled before the movie opened, but things have started to catch up, and now an official Baby Groot Hot Toys collectible is poised for release.  The 1/4th scale “Little Groot” collectible features three interchangeable head sculpts as well as moveable arms and body to recreate the character’s “I Want You Back” dance.  At the reasonable price of $44.99, this thing would make a swell Christmas present.  It’s expected to ship in January. Take a look at the Baby Groot Hot Toys figure after the jump, and click here to pre-order. The Little Groot Quarter Scale Figure includes: Authentic »

- Adam Chitwood

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Creator John Rogers Talks The Librarians, Filling the Genre Gaps on TV, Expanding the Movies to a TV Series, and More

2 hours ago

Based on TNT’s hit movie franchise, the delightfully fun adventure series The Librarians centers on an ancient organization hidden beneath the Metropolitan Public Library dedicated to protecting an unknowing world from the secret, magical reality hidden all around.  Jake Stone (Christian Kane), Cassandra Cillian (Lindy Booth) and Ezekiel Jones (John Kim) are the newest protectors of the world’s mystical treasures, helping out Librarian Flynn Carsen (Noah Wyle), his Guardian, Eve Baird (Rebecca Romijn), and a reluctant caretaker (John Larroquette). During this phone interview with Collider, show creator/executive producer/writer John Rogers talked about filling the genre gaps on TV, why people are so intrigued by libraries, finding the key to expanding this as a series, always being aware of their budget, keeping Noah Wyle on the show in a limited capacity, due to his schedule, putting this ensemble of actors together, getting Bruce Campbell to guest star as Santa Claus, »

- Christina Radish

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Rupert Wyatt Says He Hopes to Shoot Echo Chamber Next Year or the Year After; 10-Part TV Series Will Have a Sci-Fi Context

19 hours ago

Director Rupert Wyatt’s been attached to Echo Chamber for quite a while now.  Back in 2012, it was reported that HBO was developing the miniseries, which would cover the true story of a British solider who infiltrates the Irish Republican Army in the 1980s.  As he rises through the ranks, he must deal with betrayal and life threatening situations. At that time, the plan was to air the series as three 90-minute telecasts, but that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore.  On top of that, while talking to Wyatt for his upcoming release, The Gambler, he told me that Echo Chamber isn’t about the British solider/Ira scenario specifically and that his take has a sci-fi component to it.  Hit the jump for more. Here’s what Wyatt said when asked if he’s in pre-production on Echo Chamber: “I’ve been in pre-production on that »

- Perri Nemiroff

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Obama Says Sony “Made a Mistake” By Pulling The Interview

19 hours ago

While we've been passing up more Sony stories than we've been posting this week (since we're declining to publish gossip-y emails and speculative scoops related to the hack), the fact remains that there is some actual, material news coming out of this situation.  And whenever the President of the United States weighs in on status of the new Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg film, that feels like movie news to me. On the heels of the FBI's confirmation that North Korea was behind the cyber-attack on Sony, President Barack Obama took his year-end speech as an opportunity to address the situation, denouncing Sony's decision to cancel the release (going so far to remove clips of the film from the internet) of The Interview.  And I agree with him almost 100%.  Hit the jump for more on Obama's comments regarding Sony, The Interview, and not giving in to terrorists. President Obama told »

- Evan Dickson

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Allison’s Other TV Bests of 2014

20 hours ago

In my intro to last year's "Other TV Bests" category, I said, "if 2014 does even this half as well [as 2013], things should look pretty good."  We have achieved it folks, and more than we could have asked for.  There just isn't room for all of the noteworthy TV of 2014.  I've listed out more than my fair share of bests already, yet there are still more that deserve a mention (and yes, this one I limited to just 10).  Hit the jump for the rest of the best. 1. Best Guilty Pleasure: How to Get Away with Murder [ABC] -- If you watched it, well, you know.  It was the latest Shondaland creation, and the most batshit insane of them yet.  Scandal, your time may have come and gone, because Htgawm was the most live-Tweet-worthy show of the fall. 2. Best Documentary Series: The Roosevelts [PBS] -- Ken Burns, ladies and gentlemen.  Exploring the lives of the »

- Allison Keene

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Watch David Fincher Discuss His Philosophy, Alien 3, Studio Reaction to Fight Club, The Social Network, and More in 25-Minute Interview

21 hours ago

A couple of months ago, filmmaker David Fincher was honored at the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and took part in an interview onstage.  A portion of that interview has now been officially released online, and it’s full of golden nuggets from one of the most exciting directors working today.  Fincher candidly touches on everything from his personal philosophy about filmmaking to his experience making Alien 3 (and why he wanted to do it in the first place) to the studio’s reaction to seeing a first cut of Fight Club to the miracle of autonomy that he enjoyed when putting together The Social Network.  It’s a fascinating and insightful interview that’s well worth a watch.  Check it out after the jump. BAFTA released a 12-minute highlight video of the interview on YouTube that you can check out below.  It starts off with an apt »

- Adam Chitwood

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Michael Pitt Not Returning for Hannibal Season 3; Will Be Replaced by Joe Anderson

21 hours ago

A surprising casting change is underway for Hannibal Season 3.  Last year’s string of episodes for the most gorgeous show on television introduced the character of Mason Verger, with Michael Pitt wonderfully inhabiting the memorable role.  However, TV Line reports that Pitt has opted not to return for the show’s third season, forcing showrunner Bryan Fuller to recast the character.  The switch actually comes at a fairly opportune time, as last we saw Verger his face was in a rather…disheveled condition.  Joe Anderson (The Divide, The Grey) will be replacing Pitt and filling the role of Verger in the new season.  More after the jump. The folks at TV Line add that Hannibal Season 3 will be introducing the recurring character of Cordell, a “quiet, very intelligent and definitely creepy” man who acts as the personal doctor to Verger, so that gives us a brief idea of where his »

- Adam Chitwood

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New Daredevil Netflix Show Images Reveal a Lawyer By Day, Superhero By Night

22 hours ago

A couple of new Daredevil Netflix show images have landed online, giving fans a new look at the upcoming limited series from Marvel and the streaming service.  Spartacus alum Steven S. DeKnight acts as showrunner on the upcoming series, though Marvel TV chief Jeph Loeb (who also oversees Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the upcoming Agent Carter) is still intimately involved in crafting Marvel’s first foray into Netflix territory.  In a new piece in EW, Loeb describes Daredevil as “a crime drama first, superhero show second”, and while DeKnight maintains that the series is certainly “grittier and edgier” than what Marvel has done before, the target audience remains all-encompassing so they’re “not looking to push it to extreme violence or gratuitous nudity.” Check out the new Daredevil Netflix show images after the jump.  The series stars Charlie Cox, Vincent D’Onofrio, Deborah Ann Woll, Elden Henson, Toby Moore, Bob Gunton, »

- Adam Chitwood

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Hot Toys Unveils New Avengers: Age Of Ultron, Guardians Of The Galaxy, and Star Wars Figures

22 hours ago

The folks at Hot Toys are taking part in the Toy Soul 2014 convention in Hong Kong today and have unveiled some images from the showroom floor, giving us looks at some new figures.  Notable collectibles include a giant Hulkbuster from Avengers: Age of Ultron as well as other 1/6th scale collectibles of Captain America, Thor, Hawkeye, Black Widow and Hulk, and a new 1/4th scale Iron Man from the Avengers sequel as well.  In addition to the Avengers: Age of Ultron Hot Toys, there’s also a series of new Star Wars collectibles, including 1/6th scale and life-size figures (Boba Fett and Han Solo in carbonite, obviously). Take a look at all of the new figures after the jump. Via the Hot Toys Facebook page. [gallery link="file" columns="1" ids="377867,377869,377868,377860,377861,377859,377870,377876,377863,377866,377875,377873,377872,377871,377864,377865"]

The post Hot Toys Unveils New Avengers: Age Of Ultron, Guardians Of The Galaxy, and Star Wars Figures appeared first on Collider. »

- Adam Chitwood

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Kate Winslet in Early Talks for Female Lead in Danny Boyle’s Steve Jobs Biopic

22 hours ago

While Sony Pictures is dealing with the fallout from the North Korean cyber-attack, a former Sony project is barreling forward.  Universal Pictures recently picked up the Aaron Sorkin-scripted Steve Jobs biopic from Sony, and while the film had trouble firming up its cast, it appears that things are finally coming together.  Michael Fassbender is set to play the Apple innovator, Seth Rogen is onboard as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Danny Boyle is firmly in the director’s chair.  Now, after Natalie Portman previously flirted with the role, it appears that Kate Winslet is now in line to join the project as the female lead.  More after the jump. Per Variety, Kate Winslet is in early negotiations to play the female lead in Jobs.  Details regarding the role are unclear at this time, but the movie is structured like a play as it’s comprised of only three major »

- Adam Chitwood

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Exclusive: Composer Howard Shore Talks The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies, Rosewater, Maps To The Stars, Silence, and More

23 hours ago

Academy Award-winning composer Howard Shore is among today’s most respected composers and conductors.  He’s been a frequent collaborator with David Cronenberg for 35 years and has scored nearly all his films since 1979 including 2014’s Maps to the Stars.  He’s also had a long-standing collaboration with director Martin Scorsese on films that include Gangs of New York, The Departed, The Aviator, and Hugo.  However, he is probably best known for his work with Peter Jackson on The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, including this year’s The Battle of the Five Armies.  Recently, he also composed the original music for director Jon Stewart’s biopic, Rosewater. In an exclusive interview, Shore spoke about his creative partnerships with Cronenberg, Jackson, Scorsese and Stewart, his unique approach to composition and orchestration, the challenges of scoring an edgy drama compared to a large scale action movie set in a complex fantasy world, »

- Sheila Roberts

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Mr. Turner Review

19 December 2014 11:25 AM, PST

[This is a re-post of my review from the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.  Mr. Turner opens today in limited release.] Painter J.M.W. Turner, the eponymous subject of Mike Leigh’s new biopic Mr. Turner, was renowned for painting shipwrecks. A lazier film would condense Turner’s life around that simulacrum. Instead, Leigh chooses to look at the whole picture, and not just in showing a three-dimensional protagonist. Turner is part of a painting that includes a fascinating look at early-to-mid 19th century life in Europe. Leigh adds all the wonderful touches of the era’s dialect, vernacular, and linguistics along with a collection of other meticulous details to provide a vivid period piece. And it’s all built around an unforgettable performance from Timothy Spall who coughs, whistles, wheezes, and primarily grunts in his portrayal of an artist who personally and professionally defied easy categorization. The story follows Turner (Spall) along his professional and personal life, although we begin at the apex of his success. Instead of seeing »

- Matt Goldberg

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Sony Acquires Robert Rodriguez’s Frank Frazetta Adaptation Fire And Ice for Planned Franchise

19 December 2014 10:51 AM, PST

Filmmaker Robert Rodriguez first announced his intention to direct a film based on the art of Frank Frazetta over three years ago at Comic-Con.  The director said he would develop a fantasy tale called Fire and Ice (based on the 1983 animated film from Frazetta and Ralph Bakshi) that would revolve around a sword-wielding warrior who must save a princess kidnapped by evil sorcerers.  Shortly thereafter, Rodriguez announced his intent to helm Fire and Ice after Sin City 2, and with the latter sequel having hit theaters (barely) this past August, it appears that Rodriguez will indeed be moving on to Fire and Ice with the backing of Sony Pictures.  More after the jump. Per Deadline, Sony Pictures has acquired a package for Fire and Ice with Rodriguez attached to direct the live-action fantasy adaptation.  The aim is to jumpstart a new fantasy adventure franchise inspired by the work of Franzetta, »

- Adam Chitwood

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Check out New Images from Furious 7, Inside Out, Insurgent, Chappie, Pan, The Walk, and Everest

19 December 2014 10:31 AM, PST

As part of their 2015 preview issue, EW has released a new Furious 7 image along with new images from Inside Out, The Divergent Series: Insurgent, Chappie, Pan, The Walk, and Everest.  After a 2014 that I felt was fairly disappointing (I wanted to like Birdman and Inherent Vice so badly, and there were so many films that were pretty good, but short of greatness), but I'm hoping that 2015 will be better, and there are plenty of promising films.  Inside Out and Everest could be very interesting; Furious 7 looks like it can keep the momentum of Fast & Furious 7;The Walk has a captivating true story behind it, I can't count out Chappie director Neill Blomkamp or Pan director Joe Wright.  And as for Insurgent…well…*crickets* Hit the jump to check out the new Furious 7 image as well as the new stills from Inside Out, The Divergent Series: Insurgent, »

- Matt Goldberg

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9 Films Advance in Best Foreign Language Film Oscar Race, Including Force Majeure and Ida; Mommy and Two Days, One Night Miss the Cut

19 December 2014 10:17 AM, PST

The Academy today announced nine films that have advanced in the Best Foreign Language Oscar race, and there are a couple of notable exclusions.  Sweden’s hilarious/heartbreaking Force Majeure made the cut (read my review here), as did Poland’s highly praised Ida and Russia’s somewhat controversial (given its criticism of the Russian government) Leviathan, but the latest film from the Belgian filmmaking duo the Dardenne brothers, the Marion Cotillard-fronted Two Days, One Night was left off the list.  This is a surprise as the film received positive notice at Cannes earlier this year and Cotillard is somewhat of a dark horse in this year’s Best Actress race, but for whatever reason the Foreign Language branch opted not to advance the film.  Also left off the shortlist is French-Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan’s highly praised drama Mommy, which was also a critical favorite at various festivals throughout the year. »

- Adam Chitwood

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Get Hard Trailer: Will Ferrell Enlists Kevin Hart to Prepare Him for Prison

19 December 2014 9:53 AM, PST

Warner Bros. has released the first Get Hard trailer for the upcoming crime comedy.  Marking the directorial debut of Tropic Thunder and Men in Black 3 scribe Etan Cohen, the film stars Will Ferrell as a Bernie Madoff-type wealthy investment banker who enlists the man who washes his car (Kevin Hart) to help prepare him for a maximum security prison sentence.  The comedic pairing of Ferrell and Hart was already enough to make this worth seeing, but thankfully the movie also looks to be genuinely good.  There's a twist on the premise as described that feels like a nice touch to keep it from feeling outdated (or offensive, really), and unsurprisingly there are more than a couple of really funny moments on display in this first look trailer. Watch the first Get Hard trailer after the jump.  The film also stars Tip “T.I.” Harris, Alison Brie, and Craig T. Nelson. »

- Adam Chitwood

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