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Peter Berg set to direct Boston Marathon bombing thriller

34 minutes ago

The Battleship director is in final negotiations to bring Patriots’ Day to the screen, one of three films in development about the 2013 tragedy

Peter Berg, best known for directing action films Battleship and Lone Survivor, is set to take on one of the three upcoming films focusing on the Boston Marathon bombing.

Related: Jake Gyllenhaal in talks to take lead role in Boston Marathon bombing drama

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- Benjamin Lee

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Cecil the lion tribute created by Lion King animator

1 hour ago

Digital rendering of famous animal killed by Us hunter aiming to highlight issues over deaths of other African creatures at the hands of foreigners

An Oscar-nominated animator who worked on Disney classic The Lion King has painted a tribute to Cecil the lion, the Zimbabwe safari icon killed last month by an American hunter.

Related: Mia Farrow criticised for posting address of Cecil the Lion killer

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- Ben Child

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Rogue Nation looks to far east to maintain Cruise control at box office

1 hour ago

In this week’s round-up of the global box-office scene:

• Superb Korean debut promises more international growth for Mission: Impossible

• Fox’s second John Green adaptation Paper Towns struggles to match The Fault in Our Stars

Ajay Devgn thriller Drishyam marks return to normality after mega-hits Baahubali and Bajrangi Bhaijaan

Tom Cruise’s box-office purchase has actually been on the wane this decade, with diminished openings and final grosses for his run of work from 2010’s Knight and Day through Rock of Ages and Jack Reacher, to two fairly strong sci-fi films in the shape of Oblivion and Edge of Tomorrow. The $56m (£36m) Us debut for the Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation is a tonic for the Cruiser then, reaffirming his A-list status in his fourth decade of stardom: his third-biggest debut behind 2006’s War of the Worlds ($64m) and 2000’s Mission: Impossible II ($57.8m).

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- Phil Hoad

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Fly another day? Former 007 Pierce Brosnan stopped at airport over knife

2 hours ago

James Bond actor Pierce Brosnan flies out of Vermont after answering airport security staff’s questions about a hunting knife discovered in his hand luggage

Former James Bond actor Pierce Brosnan has been stopped by airport security as he tried to board a plane with a knife.

Brosnan was stopped by Us Transportation Security Administration (Tsa) agents with the blade, reportedly a ten-inch hunting knife, in his hand luggage.

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- Press Association

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Robert Downey Jr still world's best-paid actor as Bollywood stars crowd top 10

15 hours ago

Avengers star tops annual Forbes list for the third year running, but Leonardo DiCaprio and Johnny Depp find themselves displaced by Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar

Robert Downey Jr has topped Forbes magazine’s annual list of the highest paid actors for the third year in a row. The Iron Man and Avengers star made an estimated $80m (£51m) over the past 12 months, beating out fellow Hollywood behemoths such as Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper and Tom Cruise.

However, in a startling development, four out of the top 10 wealthiest male film stars now hail from outside Hollywood, according to the latest edition of the annual survey. China’s Jackie Chan and Bollywood stars Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar all finished ahead of established American actors such as Mark Wahlberg, Leonardo DiCaprio and Johnny Depp.

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- Ben Child

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Letter: John Jordan was charming and self-effacing

16 hours ago

Your piece on John Jordan brought back memories of a screening of A Clockwork Orange at Stoke- on-Trent Film Theatre preceded by a talk from John, who had brought along the very primitive-looking sound equipment he used during the making of the film. The subsequent attention paid to the sound made me realise just how good it was. He was a charming, self-effacing man.

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- Martin Pick

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Small Town Story: 'lost' football film tells tale of corruption and lure of the big league - video

21 hours ago

Directed by Montgomery Tully and released in 1953, Small Town Story spins a tale of football corruption where a Canadian ex-serviceman (Kent Walton) is tempted away from his home club of Oldchester to play for Arsenal, scuppering a potential windfall should the smaller club win promotion. Previously on the list of the BFI's 75 Most Wanted (films thought lost), Small Town Story, which also stars Susan Shaw, has now been restored and is available on DVD now via Network Distributing Continue reading »

- Guardian Staff

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English actor to play Scotland's tragic hero Bonnie Prince Charlie

21 hours ago

Actor Jamie Bacon and the Young Pretender have something in common: neither had previously visited Scotland

An English actor who has never visited Scotland has been given the lead role of Bonnie Prince Charlie in a new Scottish-produced film about the Young Pretender.

Jamie Bacon, whose film experience is so far limited to small roles in little known British indies, has been cast in The Great Getaway, which will follow the prince’s escape across the Western Isles after the failed Jacobite rising of 1745.

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- Andrew Pulver

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Dungeons & Dragons to roll the dice once more on the big screen

4 August 2015 1:49 AM, PDT

Popular role-playing game returns to multiplexes as Hollywood vies to sate demand for fantasy material in the era of Game of Thrones and The Hobbit

A new movie based on the hugely popular fantasy role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons is heading to cinemas following the settlement of a long-running legal battle between studio Warner Bros and rights holder Hasbro, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Related: Profits are coming: How Game of Thrones invigorated Hollywood

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- Ben Child

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Prometheus 2 rumoured to be shooting in January 2016

4 August 2015 1:29 AM, PDT

Ridley Scott is said to be returning to space next year for the sequel to his Alien prequel, with returning stars Noomi Rapace and Michael Fassbender

While the critical response might have been mixed (The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw called it “muddled”), the box office for Prometheus was a global success story.

Related: Monster fuss: Ridley Scott alienates xenomorphs from Prometheus 2

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- Benjamin Lee

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Giant Minion stops traffic in Dublin

4 August 2015 1:20 AM, PDT

Massive yellow inflatable breaks loose from fairground to land on a busy road before being let down by police and passers-by

A 12 metre (40ft) Minion caused traffic chaos in Dublin after it escaped from a nearby fairground and landed on a busy road.

The Gardai – the Irish police – were called to the Santry area of Dublin at 3pm on Monday. With the help of passers-by they managed to let the air out of the yellow inflatable, a promotional character from the film Minions which began life in the hit animation Despicable Me.

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- Rebecca Ratcliffe

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Ricki and the Flash review – Meryl Streep's badass singing overrides the cliches

4 August 2015 1:05 AM, PDT

Diablo Cody’s script about a runaway rocker mother who attempts to reconnect with her family feels prescriptive, but the cast’s performances are so good that it doesn’t matter

It takes just five seconds to realise that this will be a memorable movie. There’s the opening jangly chords to Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker’s American Girl, and then in close-up, Meryl Streep with ratty braids, bad makeup and a bold, deep, rockin’ voice. It’s no surprise Streep can sing – she’s proven she can do anything. In Ricki and the Flash, from director Jonathan Demme and screenwriter Diablo Cody, she’s something she’s rarely been before. She’s badass.

Ricki Rendazzo and her group, the Flash, tear it up as the house band in a Tarzana, California, bar. It’s half-empty or half-full depending on your point of view. They mix up classic rock »

- Jordan Hoffman

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Ufc champion Ronda Rousey to star in her own biopic

4 August 2015 1:01 AM, PDT

Former Olympic judo medallist will follow up roles in The Expendables 3 and Fast & Furious 7 with a film based on her bestselling autobiography

Mixed martial arts fighter Ronda Rousey will star in a biopic of her own life, she has confirmed.

Paramount has optioned rights to New York Times bestseller My Fight/Your Fight, the Olympic judo medallist’s recently published autobiography, with an eye on Rousey to star. Dawn of the Planet of the ApesMark Bomback will write the screenplay.

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- Ben Child

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Geoffrey Rush: My only ambition is to keep on putting 'actor' on my tax form

4 August 2015 12:03 AM, PDT

The Australian actor talks working with Johnny Depp, humankind’s flaws and discovering a musical ancestor thanks to TV series Who Do You think You Are

You’re about to kick off a new series of Who Do You Think You Are? Have they been asking you for years?

They’ve been asking me since the very first season. It only takes three weeks to make, but you have six months of preliminary meetings with genealogists and historians before that and up until now, I haven’t been assured of that gap. I was definitely interested in the show. As long ago as 2003, I was shooting The Life and Death of Peter Sellers with Stephen Fry who’d just done an episode and he said: “Do it, Geoffrey.” It’s not like shooting reality TV or I’m A Celebrity. This is a show made by experts wanting to find »

- Interview by Nancy Groves

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The Diary Of A Teenage Girl: ‘a more realistic view of women and sex’

3 August 2015 4:00 PM, PDT

A new American indie hit explores female sexuality in a way few films would dare and has earned an 18 certificate as a result. Its director explains why mainstream cinema needs to change its ways – and fast

Admittedly, The Diary Of A Teenage Girl is never going to be an easy sell when you’re standing outside the cinema, persuading your other half how to spend the next two hours. Simply put, the story goes: 15-year-old Minnie begins drug-addled affair with mum’s 35-year-old boyfriend. Couldn’t director and screenwriter Marielle Heller have made her directorial debut a nice romcom or, at least, something a bit less sexual-abuse-y?

Related: 18 certificate ruling keeps The Diary of a Teenage Girl away from teenage girls

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- Issy Sampson

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Jurassic World sequel won't just take place on an island

3 August 2015 2:32 PM, PDT

Colin Trevorrow, who is co-writing the sequel to his box office smash, teased details on the anticipated follow-up

A week after Universal Studios announced a June 2018 release date for the sequel to Colin Trevorrow’s box office monster Jurassic World, details have begun to emerge on the nature of the follow-up.

Related: Bryce Dallas Howard deserves more kudos for Jurassic World

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- Nigel M Smith

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Pez dispensers to get their own movie

3 August 2015 10:44 AM, PDT

The popular dispensers, which come in a wide variety of character designs, are to be the basis for a new animated film

The success of The Lego Movie has opened the floodgates for film spin-offs of previously unthinkable products and crazes. Following the news that Sony Pictures has greenlit a movie about emoji, it has now emerged that an animated film is in the works featuring Pez dispensers.

Deadline reports that the novelty dispensers – whose flip-up heads have been produced in a wide variety of designs – are set to become the centre of a film that, if it proves successful, could emulate Lego’s all-embracing product-to-screen “universe”.

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- Andrew Pulver

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Is the Force with Simon Pegg as he ranks the best and worst Star Wars films?

3 August 2015 10:18 AM, PDT

The Mission: Impossible actor has ranked George Lucas’s space opera in order of quality. So is Attack of the Clones really worse than The Phantom Menace?

The art of amateur Star Wars punditry may not be up there with James Bond, there being almost two dozen official 007 films to place in order of debonair brilliance (as opposed to just six movies of radically varying quality in George Lucas’s long-running space opera), but it has its place in the scheme of things. And who better to rank the saga in order of excellence than Simon Pegg, the British actor whose scathing verdict on The Phantom Menace in the much-loved 90s sitcom Spaced – long before he became a Hollywood superstar – remains perhaps the definitive reading.

Pegg returned to his favourite subject in 2012 for an MTV interview marking the debut of the 3D version of the 1999 prequel in cinemas. The actor »

- Ben Child

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Amy Schumer calls for tighter gun control after Trainwreck shootings

3 August 2015 10:02 AM, PDT

Comic teams up with her cousin, New York senator Charles Schumer, behind plan to limit access to weapons for criminals and people with mental illness

The comic and actor Amy Schumer teamed up on Monday with her second cousin, Us senator Chuck Schumer, to call for greater gun control in the wake of the fatal shooting of two women at a screening of her film Trainwreck.

The Schumers joined forces to promote a three-part plan aimed at making it more difficult for violent criminals and mentally ill people to obtain firearms after a man opened fire in Lafayette, Louisiana, minutes into a showing of the romantic comedy last month. The shooter, described as a “drifter” with a history of mental illness, killed Jillian Johnson, 33, and Mayci Breaux, 21, and injured nine others.

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- Lauren Gambino in New York and Ben Child

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Five great female-friendly comic-book adaptations

3 August 2015 9:55 AM, PDT

The Diary of a Teenage Girl is the latest comic book movie to feature a heroine, but women are still woefully underrepresented in the genre overall

Not many comic book movies start with a scruffy, smiling 15-year-old girl confessing: “I had sex today … Holy shit.” If we met Minnie, the protagonist of Marielle Heller’s adaptation of Phoebe Gloeckner’s 2002 graphic novel The Diary of a Teenage Girl in any other comic book adaptation, she’d most likely be the high school siren and love interest. If she’s lucky she might be a feisty foil in the mould of Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman or Anna Kendrick’s Stacey Pilgrim in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. But she wouldn’t have thoughts or a movie of her own.

The forthcoming films of Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel are long overdue, and hopefully will fare better than a lot of other past big-budget, »

- Isabel Stevens

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