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David Fincher Talks "Leagues," "Game" & More

17 September 2014 1:21 AM, PDT

Continuing his "Gone Girl" promotional rounds, filmmaker David Fincher has given a lengthy and refreshingly honest interview with Playboy about his previous works, upcoming films and abandoned projects.

Amongst the surprising revelations? He regrets doing 1997's "The Game" and says his producer wife advised him strongly not to do it:

"In hindsight, my wife was right. We didn't figure out the third act, and it was my fault, because I thought if you could just keep your foot on the throttle it would be liberating and funny. I know what I like, and one thing I definitely like is not knowing where a movie is going. These days, though, it's hard to get audiences to give themselves over. They want to see the whole movie in a 90-second trailer."

He also spoke at length about his now axed film adaptation of Disney's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea". Rather than focusing on how it failed, »

- Garth Franklin

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News Bits: Machina, 99, Vacation, Von Trier

16 September 2014 10:40 PM, PDT

Ex Machina

A new photo is out of Alicia Vikander in the upcoming sci-fi feature "Ex Machina". "28 Days Later" and "Sunshine" writer Alex Garland scribe makes his directorial debut on the film which also stars Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson.

Isaac plays a billionaire programmer who picks a young employee (Gleeson) to help him test out an A.I.-driven, female robot (Vikander) on his estate.  No word on a release date as yet. [Source: The Playlist]

99 Homes

Broad Green Pictures has closed a $3 million deal for the U.S. rights to the high-profile Toronto Film Festival title "99 Homes". Broad Green will reportedly release it next spring and try for Oscar season 2015

Andrew Garfield and Michael Shannon star in Ramin Bahrani's film about an evicted construction worker who ultimately goes to work for the real-estate broker who forced his family out of their home. [Source: Deadline]

Vacation

Production has officially begun on "Vacation," the »

- Garth Franklin

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"Bond 24" Gets A New Cinematographer

16 September 2014 7:30 PM, PDT

Though it got great notices, without a doubt the most universally acclaimed element of the Sam Mendes-directed 2012 James Bond film "Skyfall" was that of the visual work and compositions of cinematographer Roger Deakins.

Sadly Mendes couldn't get Deakins back for the upcoming "Skyfall" due to his commitment to the Coens' upcoming "Hail, Caesar". It's a fair enough scheduling conflict though, after all Deakins' work on "Skyfall" prevented him from working on the Coens' "Inside Llewyn Davis".

Despite Deakins' departure, it seems Mendes has settled on a superb replacement. In Contention reports that Hoyte van Hoytema has scored the gig.

The Dutch-Swedish cinematographer first came to notice for the original "Let the Right One In" and has since done stellar work on the likes of "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy," "The Fighter," "Her" and Christopher Nolan's upcoming sci-fi epic "Interstellar".

The site also says, though this is unconfirmed, that Bond 24 »

- Garth Franklin

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Jack Huston Is The New "Ben-Hur"

16 September 2014 7:15 PM, PDT

"Boardwalk Empire" star Jack Huston has scored the title role in Timur Bekmambetov's upcoming "Ben-Hur" remake at MGM Studios and Paramount Pictures.

The new adaptation of Lew Wallace's 1880 novel focuses on a falsely accused nobleman who survives years of slavery to take vengeance on his best friend Messala who betrayed him. Both have to choose between retribution and forgiveness.

The key role of Messala is to be cast next. Morgan Freeman came onboard recently as Ildarin, the character who teaches Ben-Hur to become a champion chariot racer. Also still to be cast is Jesus Christ whose story parallels with Ben-Hur in the film.

Huston beat out Tom Hiddleston who was reportedly linked to the project last month, but at the time the "Thor" actor was considering several offers.

No word on a production start date, but the film is targeting a February 26th 2016 release.

Source: Deadline »

- Garth Franklin

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Martin Campbell To Helm "Hunter Killer"

16 September 2014 7:10 PM, PDT

"Casino Royale" and "The Mask of Zorro" helmer Martin Campbell is in early talks to direct the espionage thriller "Hunter Killer" at Relativity and Original Films.

Based on George Wallace and Don Keith's novel "Firing Point," the story follows a renegade Russian military leader who pushes the U.S. to the brink of a nuclear confrontation.

Cut off from all outside communication, a submarine commander and an elite Navy special forces unit are all that stand between the Russian assault and all-out war.

Campbell is just the latest name attached to the helm of the project, and this would mark his first film since "Green Lantern".

Previously the likes of Antoine Fuqua, Phillip Noyce, McG and Steven Quale have all been linked. Neal Moritz, Toby Jaffe and Ryan Kavanaugh are producing.

Source: The Wrap »

- Garth Franklin

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Another "Spartacus" Star Is An "Arrow" Villain

16 September 2014 7:03 PM, PDT

Another regular from Starz's "Spartacus" is joining the cast of "Arrow" as a villain.

Nick Tarabay has scored the recurring role of Digger Harkness, better known as DC villain Captain Boomerang, in the upcoming third season of the series.

In the show, he will be an ex-argus operative skilled in martial arts and espionage, with a thirst for vengeance against his former employers. In the comics, he's an enemy of the Flash with ties to the Suicide Squad.

Tarabay will appear in the seventh and eighth episodes of the new season, the latter serving as part of a two-hour crossover event between "Arrow"" and "The Flash".

The actor marks the third "Spartacus" alum to play a villain on the show following Katrina Law as Nyssa al Ghul and Manu Bennett as last year's season-long villain Slade Wilson/Deathstroke.

Source: The Live Feed »

- Garth Franklin

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Daniels Talks Reprising C-3Po In SW7

16 September 2014 4:32 PM, PDT

C-3Po is back in the upcoming "Star Wars: Episode VII," and for a very brief period there was talk that actor Anthony Daniels would not be in the suit - rather he'd only provide the voice.

In a new and lengthy interview with Entertainment Weekly, Daniels says he shot that idea down quickly. In fact he never wants the character to be represented in CG again following some rather dodgy shots of him as such in the prequels:

"I will tell you that when [director] J.J. Abrams rang me to ask about filming Star Wars: Episode VII, one of the first things he said after he told me how wonderful I was - and that didn't take long - but he then said, 'Would you be interested in being in the film just doing the voice?' I said, 'No,' and he said, 'Right!'

He knew I'd say that. »

- Garth Franklin

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D'Arcy Is Jarvis In Marvel's "Agent Carter"

16 September 2014 4:12 PM, PDT

James D'Arcy ("Cloud Atlas," "Master and Commander") is set to join the cast of Marvel's "Agent Carter" series for ABC.

Set in 1946, Hayley Atwell reprises her role as Peggy Carter who is now working for the covert Strategic Scientific Reserve, doing administrative work and going on secret missions.

D'Arcy will play Jarvis, the butler to Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper) and ally to Agent Carter. His character is the one Howard's son Tony eventually names his A.I. system after.

Enver Gjokaj and Chad Michael Murray are also onboard the series which will air when "Agents of Shield" goes on its mid-season break.

Source: Variety »

- Garth Franklin

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TV News: Constantine, Lock, Problem, Dig

16 September 2014 4:10 PM, PDT

Constantine

Scans of TV Guide's Fall film preview edition over at Spoiler TV include a couple of new shots from NBC's upcoming "Constantine" series.

Lock In

Legendary TV has acquired the screen rights and are planning to adapt John Scalzi's just released novel "Lock In" into a pilot for a potential series. The story revolves around a highly contagious virus that causes five million Americans to succumb to locked-in syndrome - they are paralyzed but fully aware.

A quarter of a century later, the immobile are able to borrow the bodies of 'integrators.' After one of the paralyzed is murdered, the story follows two FBI agents who are called in to investigate a case that spirals into something far larger. [Source: Variety]

Problem Child

NBC has handed out a script commitment for a half-hour single-camera comedy series remake of the 1990 John Ritter-led feature "Problem Child". Scot Armstrong ("The Hangover II, »

- Garth Franklin

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Fox, DC Plan A "Lucifer" TV Series

16 September 2014 4:05 PM, PDT

Ahead of the series premiere of "Gotham" next week, Fox has given a put pilot commitment to another DC Comics adaptation from Warner Bros. TV.

Tom Kapinos ("Californication") will executive produce "Lucifer," based on the character who started off as a supporting player in Neil Gaiman's "Sandman" comics before top lining his own spinoff at DC Vertigo.

In the "Sandman" comics, which takes much of its influence of Hell from Milton's "Paradise Lost," the beautiful fallen angel Lucifer Morningstar grows tired of ruling Hell and gives up the throne to live out eternity on a beach in Western Australia.

The TV series will take its premise from the solo "Lucifer" spin-off comic series in which the fallen angel has now moved to the United States and is now running an exclusive piano bar called Lux in Los Angeles.

Source: Deadline »

- Garth Franklin

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Writing Begins On Spider-Man Spin-Off "Venom"

16 September 2014 1:18 PM, PDT

We already know Alex Kurtzman's upcoming "Spider-Man" spin-off feature "Venom" will be a darker entity than the web-slinging franchise that spawned it, but one bit of surprising news is that the Venom we see on screen may not be the one people are most familiar with.

Out doing promotion for the new TV series "Scorpion," Kurtzman tells Cbr that he and Ed Solomon have just 'broken' the story for "Venom":

"Yeah, before last Friday came out, we started kind of roughing out a story. Ed Solomon's going to be writing it very soon. I can't tell you too much, but I'm really excited about it."

Kurtzman quickly adds it hasn't been an easy choice regarding which incarnation of Venom we'll see:

"I would not say it's an easy choice. I would say that there are quite a few things about Venom that are interesting. Venom had several different iterations, »

- Garth Franklin

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"Star Wars" Set Pics Shoot Down Rumors?

16 September 2014 1:09 PM, PDT

Rumors regarding "Star Wars: Episode VII" have been as elaborate as they have been prolific. Spoilers seem to be dropping left and right from sources and sites - some reliable, some... not so much.

Potential Spoilers Ahead

This week, two very blurry set photos may have shot down two of the longer running ones. You see both actors Adam Driver and Gwendoline Christie have been rumored for villain roles. Both have been suggested for Sith lords, while Christie has also been suggested as a possible Imperial officer.

Click Here to see the photos.

The photos on the other hand paint a different story. Posted originally on a Facebook page and then Star Wars 7 News, the shots were taken from the Greenham Common set in the U.K. and appear to showcase Driver in an X-Wing pilot uniform along with Christie and others in dressed down civilian garb.

It doesn't necessarily »

- Garth Franklin

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Chris Hemsworth To "Get Out of This World"

16 September 2014 12:46 PM, PDT

Actor Chris Hemsworth has optioned the film rights to Steve Earle's novel "I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive" and is slated to both star in and produce the indie film along with Laura Bickford ("Traffic").

Benjamin Grayson adapted the script and will make his directorial debut on the project about Toby 'Doc' Ebersole who is haunted by the ghost of Hank Williams following his involvement in the country singer's mysterious death in 1953.

The story picks up a decade later in the red-light district of San Antonio where Doc supports his morphine habit by performing illegal medical procedures. Hank's ghost visits Doc frequently to offer unwanted advice.

Source: The Wrap »

- Garth Franklin

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Lee Child Talks Next Jack Reacher Film

16 September 2014 12:28 PM, PDT

Author Lee Child confirms that a sequel to the 2012 film adaptation of his Jack Reacher novel series is in the works, though the first film's director Christopher McQuarrie will probably not be returning.

While the tenth book "One-Shot" was the basis of "Jack Reacher," the upcoming follow-up will be based on the eighteenth novel "Never Go Back". Child tells Empire that particular book was chosen because of both the young and older female lead characters which could increase the film's appeal:

"Any of these books, you look at them and say 'we could do that', but then you look at it and go, 'well, how are we going to do it? They're all very difficult.' [The character Samantha Dayton] convinced them about which book to make for the next movie. It's almost a three-hander in terms of audience appeal - you've got Reacher, you've got the woman sidekick (Major Susan Turner), and then »

- Garth Franklin

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First Photo: Sony's "Powers" TV Series

16 September 2014 12:18 PM, PDT

Production is officially underway on the upcoming TV series adaptation of the acclaimed comic "Powers" for Sony Pictures, and today USA Today has posted a first look photo from the series starring Sharlto Copley and Susan Heyward as Detectives Christian Walker and Deena Pilgrim respectively.

The story follows two detectives assigned to investigate superhero-related major crimes. The series is slated to launch exclusively on the PlayStation Network this December, an advantage says executive producer Charlie Huston because the show will have network production values but without content restrictions:

"My dream was for the show and the books to almost run in parallel universes as they explore the same themes. We're getting the best of both worlds. We're getting a network-budgeted show, and we're getting to dive in as dark and deep as we want to go."

»

- Garth Franklin

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Tom Hiddleston To Visit "Skull Island"

16 September 2014 12:09 PM, PDT

Loki himself, "Thor" star Tom Hiddleston, has joined the cast of the King Kong origin movie "Skull Island" for Legendary Pictures.

Hiddleston will reportedly play the lead role in the project, though no further details about his character are available at this point.

At the same time, "The Kings of Summer" director Jordan Vogt-Roberts is confirmed to be directing the film which will deal with the many monsters occupying the mysterious, remote and harsh Skull Island.

Vogt-Roberts, who is also slated to direct the upcoming film based on the "Metal Gear Solid" franchise, confirmed his recruitment via Twitter.

The project, which was announced at this year's Comic Con, is currently targeting a late 2016 release.

Source: Heat Vision »

- Garth Franklin

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Female Contenders For Next "True Detective"

16 September 2014 12:07 PM, PDT

Rosario Dawson has reportedly emerged as the favorite for the female lead role in HBO's second season of its anthology crime series "True Detective".

The Wrap reports that Jessica Biel, Malin Akerman ("Watchmen"), and Jamie Alexander ("Thor") have also emerged as strong contenders for the part. Elisabeth Moss and Rachel McAdams, who were previously rumored, are still said to be in the running.

Other actresses in the mix include Oona Chaplin ("Game of Thrones"), Brit Marling ("Arbitrage") and Kelly Reilly ("Flight").

Creator Nic Pizzolatto and HBO are reportedly set to hold another round of auditions to find the right actress out of this lot as the network needs to make a decision shortly.

Whoever wins is expected to star opposite Colin Farrell and Taylor Kitsch as the other two lead detectives in a story about a trio of law enforcement officials investigating a murder that appears to be tied to »

- Garth Franklin

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Netflix Orders Two Seasons Of Apatow Series

16 September 2014 11:36 AM, PDT

Netflix has given a two season, twenty-two episode pickup to "Love," a Judd Apatow produced relationship comedy series. The project, which marks Apatow's first TV show creation since "Undeclared" over a decade ago, will star Paul Rust ("I Love You, Beth Cooper") and Gillian Jacobs ("Community").

Rust and Lesley Arfin ("Brooklyn Nine-Nine") co-created the series with the ten episode first season scheduled to premiere in 2016. The twelve episode second season will then premiere the following year. All three will executive produce alongside Brent Forrester ("The Office").

Rust and Jacobs play a couple who "navigate the exhilaration and humiliations of intimacy, commitment, and other things they were hoping to avoid."

Source: Deadline »

- Garth Franklin

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News Bits: Fall, Minds, Minecraft, Dates

16 September 2014 11:31 AM, PDT

Fall Films

Movie ticketing service Fandango has released the results of a survey they have conducted to find the anticipated movies of the Fall film season. Unsurprisingly, the juggernaut of a sequel "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part I" stands at number one.

After that came David Fincher's "Gone Girl," Chris Nolan's "Interstellar" and the Denzel Washington-led "The Equalizer. Rounding out the top ten are "The Penguins of Madagascar," "The Judge," "Dumb and Dumber To," "Fury," "The Good Lie" and "Foxcatcher". [Source: The Wrap]

Darkest Minds

"Wayward Pines" creator Chad Hodge has been set to adapt the first book of Alexandra Bracken's young adult novel trilogy "Darkest Minds". Shawn Levy will produce.

Set after a pandemic kills most of America's children and teenagers, some survivors develop superpowers but are deemed too dangerous for society. Taken from their families, they are placed inside internment camps where a sixteen-year-old with telekinetic »

- Garth Franklin

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"Avatar" Sequels Could Be 4K & 120Fps?

15 September 2014 6:49 PM, PDT

VFX veteran Douglas Trumbull has revealed that he's had discussions with James Cameron's producing partner Jon Landau about potentially using Trumbull's Magi technology on the upcoming "Avatar" sequels.

Trumbull has developing a filming system that shoots 4K 3D at 120 frames per second, one that could overcome some of the issues with Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit" films which were shot at 48 frames per second rather than the 24 frames per second of standard film. Trumbull tells THR:

"I know that Cameron admired Showscan and that he is a huge advocate of high frame rates [HFRs]. The use of HFRs for Avatar would be very appropriate and very successful. I don't know if Cameron is interested [in using Magi for the Avatar sequels]. He's in seclusion writing the screenplay for Avatar . I am talking to Jon Landau, and we plan to have a screening [of Ufotog] soon."

"Ufotog" refers to a ten minute, demonstrative and experimental sci-fi adventure film which showcases the technology. »

- Garth Franklin

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