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Sam Claflin to Star Opposite Shailene Woodley in Survival Drama ‘Adrift’ (Exclusive)

1 hour ago

Me Before You” and “Hunger Games” star Sam Claflin is in negotiations to join Shailene Woodley in Stx Entertaiment’s survival drama “Adrift,” sources tell Variety.

Miles Teller was initially in talks to reunite with his “Divergent” and “Spectacular Now” co-star in the movie, but passed on the project due to scheduling conflicts.

Adrift” is written and produced by Aaron and Jordan Kandell. Baltasar Kormákur will direct and produce the film under his Rvk Studios banner, with production set to begin in June.

Woodley signed on to star in “Adrift” during the Berlin Film Festival, where Stx began selling rights.

Adrift” is based on the true story of Tami Oldham, who, after being knocked unconscious by the largest hurricane in the history of the Pacific Ocean, awakens to find her fiancé Richard Sharp badly injured, their boat in ruins, and no means of communication or navigation. She must race against »


- Justin Kroll

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Elizabeth Banks’ ‘Charlie’s Angels’ Reboot Gets Summer 2019 Release Date

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Sony Pictures has slated Elizabeth Banks’ “Charlie’s Angels” reboot for a June 7, 2019, release. The studio has also dated “The Nightingale” for Aug. 10, 2018, and an untitled Sony Animation film for July 24, 2020.

Sony has led the charge in adding more female directors to its roster, with Catherine Hardwicke directing its “Miss Bala” remake and Lucia Aniello helming its upcoming comedy “Rough Night.”

Banks will also produce via her Universal-based Brownstone Productions with her husband and producing partner, Max Handelman.

“Charlie’s Angels” premiered in 1976 on ABC and lasted five seasons, with Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson, and Jaclyn Smith portraying private detectives working for a benefactor named Charlie. Cheryl Ladd replaced Fawcett, with Shelley Hack and Tanya Roberts joining the show in later years.

Sony produced a 2000 movie with Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu, »


- Justin Kroll

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Cannes Film Review: ‘Rodin’

1 hour ago

On the centenary of Auguste Rodin’s death, Jacques Doillon delivers a useful educational tool for the armchair traveler too lazy to go to a museum. Or read a book. “Rodin” could also be watched as prep work before going to the Musée Rodin, a partner in the film’s production. What it’s not so good for is a cinema audience expecting more than a plodding two-hour lesson in the artist’s life. Given Doillon’s recent films (“Love Battles”), one could have imagined this would have more flesh pounding than clay kneading, but no, his “Rodin” is a meticulously reverential, handsomely lit and very dull biopic about the 19th century’s most revolutionary sculptor. Given the artist’s cachet among culture vultures, it’s likely some art houses will book a limited run, but reviews won’t be positive.

Those retaining fond memories of Bruno Nuytten’s “Camille Claudel »


- Jay Weissberg

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‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Sailing for $80 Million Launch, ‘Baywatch’ at $40 Million

2 hours ago

Johnny Depp’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” is poised to dominate Memorial Day moviegoing, while Dwayne Johnson’s “Baywatch” should deliver decent results during the holiday.

Forecasts place the fifth iteration of Disney’s “Pirates” franchise at about $80 million at 4,276 North American locations during the Friday-Monday weekend. The international launch — which begins Wednesday — should deliver between $150 million and $175 million.

“Dead Men Tell No Tales” is only the third wide release film in 2017 for Disney, which has so far seen blockbuster results from “Beauty and the Beast” and “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” with a combined $1.8 billion in global box office so far. The estimated budget for “Dead Men” is $230 million, so Disney needs to see the same kind of ticket sales.

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‘Baywatch’ and ‘Wonder Woman’ Dominate Social Media Buzz

Paramount’s “Baywatch” is tracking for an opening at around $40 million at about 3,500 domestic »


- Dave McNary

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Cannes Film Review: ’24 Frames’

2 hours ago

What’s the most romantic song ever written? If I told you it was “Love Never Dies,” by Andrew Lloyd Webber (the title number from his unsuccessful 2010 musical), you’d probably say I was nuts. But when you come out of the theater after seeing “24 Frames,” the final film by Abbas Kiarostami, that song — which I had never heard before — takes up residence in your mental jukebox in a way that’s so haunting, for a while it crowds out all the other beauty you’ve heard.

“24 Frames” isn’t a narrative. It’s a series of 24 four-and-a-half-minute segments, most of them depicting animals in nature, each one unfolding inside a single static frame. “Love Never Dies,” performed by the Welsh singer Katherine Jenkins, is played during the final segment, which, coming after a lot of quieter ones, is a stunning and majestic Kiarostami statement about love, cinema, death, technology, »


- Owen Gleiberman

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Cannes: Sony Pictures Classics Buys Cowboy Drama ‘The Rider’ (Exclusive)

3 hours ago

Sony Pictures Classics has landed North American rights to “The Rider,” Variety has learned.

The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival Directors’ Fortnight to strong reviews on Saturday. It’s the second project from writer-director Chloe Zhao, who made the 2015 Sundance drama “Songs My Brother Taught Me.”

The Rider” tells the story of a cowboy (played by Brady Jandreau) who embarks on a road trip through America after a near-death accident. In his review for Variety, Guy Lodge wrote that “The Rider” “could be the stuff of many a corn-syrup country ballad, but gains artful integrity from Zhao’s favored docu-fiction technique — roughly tracing a script around the experiences of her non-professional actors — and dusty-dreamy visual style.”

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Cannes Film Festival: 7 Biggest Winners and Losers

It was produced by Caviar and Highway Films, including Bert Hamelinck, Sacha Ben Harroche, and Mollye Asher.

It’s been a slow Cannes Film Festival, »


- Ramin Setoodeh

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Poll: What’s Your Favorite Roger Moore Bond Film?

3 hours ago

Roger Moore, known for his portrayal of James Bond in seven movies over the course of more than a decade, has died at the age of 89 after a short battle with cancer.

In the wake of the news, fans are looking back at his turns at 007, which all started after Moore took over for Sean Connery in 1973’s “Live and Let Die.” The actor’s more humorous take would resonate with even the most loyal of Connery fans — and helped revive the franchise at the box office.

He would next appear in 1974’s “The Man With the Golden Gun” and then in 1977’s “The Spy Who Loved Me,” which rocked Bond into blockbuster status with $185.4 million worldwide. Audiences continued to buy tickets, and heap praise on Moore, for “Moonraker” and “For Your Eyes Only.”

His last two films were “Octopussy” and “A View to Kill,” after which he retired his license to kill. »


- Variety Staff

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Cannes: Netflix Movies Dominate Early Digital Buzz Amid Screening Controversy

3 hours ago

Netflix might not be returning to the Cannes Film Festival next year, but its presence at this year’s fest has garnered the lion’s share of digital chatter.

From May 17-22, Netflix’s “Okja,” a sci-fi film from Bong Joon-ho about a young girl battling a giant corporation over her massive pet pig, had far and away the highest digital engagement out of all the movies and TV shows screened at Cannes so far, according to marketing technology company Amobee. The next highest buzz-generator was another Netflix movie, Noah Baumbach’s “The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected),” starring Ben Stiller and Adam Sandler, which had 55% the level of engagement as “Okja” (see relative rankings below).

A big reason for all the attention on Netflix: the outcry from the French film community about the streamer being included in the festival despite Netflix not releasing the titles theatrically in the country, »


- Todd Spangler

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‘Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

3 hours ago

In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Twentieth Century Fox claims the top spot in spending with “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.”

Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.56 million through Sunday for 1,290 national ad airings across 30 networks. (Spend figures are based on estimates generated from May 15-21. Estimates may be updated after the chart is posted as new information becomes available.) Understandably, Twentieth Century Fox is targeting a family-friendly crowd, with network-specific spend prioritized across Nick, E! and Cartoon Network, and show-specific spend for airings during The Voice, SpongeBob SquarePants and The Loud House.

Just behind “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie” in second place: Paramount Pictures’ “Baywatch,” which saw 1,098 national ad airings across 38 networks, with an estimated media value of $5.5 million.

TV ad placements for Universal Pictures’ “The »


- iSpot.tv

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Cannes: Breaking Glass Pictures Snags Carlos Lechuga’s ‘Santa & Andres’ (Exclusive)

3 hours ago

Breaking Glass Pictures has snapped up the North American distribution rights to Carlos Lechuga’s political drama “Santa & Andres,” which has been banned in Cuba.

Sales agent Alfredo Calvino of Habanero Film Sales inked the deal with Breaking Glass CEO Rich Wolff at the Cannes Marché du Film. Breaking Glass plans a limited theatrical release in the fourth quarter of this year, followed by a release on DVD and VOD.

“The film has had an extensive festival round after it premiered last year at Tiff [Toronto Int’l Film Fest] and won the Best Performance Award at Miff [Miami Int’l Film Festival], among others,” said Calvino.

Lechuga’s Cuban-Colombian-French co-production recently also took both best Ibero-American fiction feature and actress for its lead Lola Amores, as well as a Premio Maguey Special Mention for male lead Eduardo Martinez, at the Guadalajara Int’l Film Fest in March. A week before, both leads picked up a best performance award at »


- Anna Marie de la Fuente

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Cannes Film Review: ‘The Workshop’

4 hours ago

For how long can a film level-headedly discuss the rules and mechanics of a thriller before becoming something of a thriller itself? That’s the teasing hook, but not even the most loaded question, dangled by “The Workshop,” a sly, supple and repeatedly surprising collision of literary, moral and political lines of debate that marks an enthralling return to form for writer-director Laurent Cantet. Gathering a diverse group of teens to intellectually tussle in a structured educational environment — in this case, a summer creative writing workshop moderated by an acclaimed novelist — the film initially recalls the lively docu-fiction form of Cantet’s 2008 Palme d’Or winner “The Class.” Yet Cantet isn’t out to make the same film twice, deftly wrongfooting viewers as focus is pulled by the group’s most reactionary, volatile member, brilliantly played by newcomer Matthieu Lucci. The tense, excitingly topical result is entirely its own animal, »


- Guy Lodge

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Ice Cube to Star in High-Tech Crime Thriller From ‘Patriots Day’ Writer

4 hours ago

Ice Cube will star in Universal’s high-tech crime thriller “Before I Disappear” from “Jason Bourne” producer Captivate Entertainment.

Captivate’s Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner are producing. The screenplay, written by “Patriots Day” scribe Josh Zetumer, centers on a clandestine high-tech version of the witness protection program, which makes clients disappear by offering them seamless exits into new lives.

Related

Ice Cube, ‘Hamilton’ Director Team on Live-Action ‘Oliver Twist’ for Disney

“When Ice Cube appears on screen, there is an instant credibility that is undeniable,” Smith said. “We’re excited to be working with such a talented actor on this project.”

Cube was most recently seen in “Fist Fight” and “xXx: Return of Xander Cage.” He starred last year in “Ride Along 2” and “Barbershop: The Next Cut.” Universal is also developing “Ride Along 3” for him and Kevin Hart. Cube was a producer on “Straight Outta Compton” and on the “Ride Along” franchise. »


- Dave McNary

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Innovative Middle East Fest to Launch in Amman

4 hours ago

An innovative film festival focused on first works from the Arab world is being launched by Jordan’s Royal Film Commission in tandem with Cairo-based marketing and distribution company Mad Solutions and the Arab Cinema Center.

The new Amman International Film Festival – Awal Film event, set to have its first edition June 20-25, 2018, in the Jordanian capital (pictured), will award prizes for directing, screenwriting, acting, cinematography, editing, music and production design displayed in first works by Arab directors. It has potential to gain traction as a significant industry incubator in the region.

The launch of the Amman fest is the latest development in the ever-changing Arab film festival landscape, following the recent announcement of the ambitious new El Gouna Film Festival being launching in Egypt in September, headed by respected Arab cinema expert and programmer Intishal Al Tamimi, and reports that the Marrakech Film Festival is in jeopardy after 16 editions »


- Nick Vivarelli

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Cannes Film Review: ‘Golden Years’

4 hours ago

Last year’s “Being 17” reminded us that André Téchiné could still make beautifully crafted, youthful films with insight and emotional certitude. The master’s latest, “Golden Years,” offers a far less encouraging lesson, since this ragtag period piece, clearly plagued by script problems, is lifeless to the core. Artificiality was never Téchiné’s strong suit, and the film’s structure, main characters and recurrent “Lola Montès”-style cabaret-circus device don’t play well to what he does best. Based on the fabulous but true story of a World War I deserter who discovers a thrilling new life when his wife dresses him up as a woman to avoid being caught, “Golden” enters a market already awash in gender fluidity and is unlikely to find a berth outside France.

Who can blame the director if the irresistible lure of this unlikely tale broke down his presumed wariness of costume dramas? (They appear infrequently in his oeuvre. »


- Jay Weissberg

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Motion Picture & Television Fund Opens Renovated Movie Theater Complex

5 hours ago

The Motion Picture & Television Fund rededicated its newly renovated Wasserman Campus movie theater in Woodland Hills on Saturday, May 20.

The Louis B. Mayer Theatre, named after the decades-long head of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, first opened in 1967 and was designed for residents to screen first-run films. The complex got a remodeled screening room and expanded outdoor event plaza as the theater celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

The Susan and Gary Martin Screening Room and the Michael V. Lewis Plaza were constructed on Mptf’s campus through donations from longtime Mptf supporters and donors Susan and Gary Martin and RealD founder and CEO Michael Lewis.

Related

George Clooney, Hugh Jackman Help Mptf Celebrate Its 95th Birthday

“We are incredibly fortunate to bring together these philanthropic-minded industry legends to revitalize this space,” Mptf CEO Bob Beitcher (pictured above) said. “Screenings of first-run films on Thursday and Sunday evenings are an essential ingredient of the »

- Rebecca Rubin

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Anne Hathaway Producing, Starring in Romantic Comedy for STX

5 hours ago

Anne Hathaway will produce and star in an untitled, contemporary romantic comedy for STX Films.

No director is attached to the project, based on a script from screenwriters Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein, who previously wrote the screenplays for “How to Be Single,” “The Vow,” and “He’s Just Not That Into You.” Adam Shulman will also produce and Jonathan Rice will co-produce.

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Anne Hathaway’s ‘Dirty Rotten Scoundrels’ Remake Finds Director

“We have been looking for ways to work with Annie since launching Stx, and when she came to us with this idea, we knew right away that we wanted to make this movie with her,” said Stx Films chief Adam Fogelson.  “This is a modern day look at love, dating, and hookups with a very contemporary and authentic voice that speaks to a generation that casually swipes right to find a mate. As technology has allowed for a new era for matchmaking, »


- Dave McNary

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First-Ever Women in Animation World Summit to Be Held at Annecy International Animation Festival

5 hours ago

This year’s Annecy International Animation Festival will include a new addition to the roster of events: the Women in Animation World Summit, a day-long symposium of panels and discussions on topics relevant to women in the animation world that will take place June 12 at the Impérial Palace Hotel.

The event is hosted by Women in Animation (Wia) and its sister group, Les Femmes s’Animent (Lfa), as well as Walt Disney Studios, the Centre National du Cinéma et de l’Image Animée (Cnc), the Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques (Sacd) and Hiventy, all in conjunction with Mifa 2017. Some of the topics the panels will address include “Exploring Unconscious Bias,” “50/50 by 2025 — How are We Getting There?” “Developing Diverse Stories” and “Artists’ Experiences.”

“We are honored to co-host the first Women in Animation World Summit at Annecy, with Mifa’s continued support of our advocacy,” said Wia co-president Marge Dean. »


- Erin Nyren

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California Lagged Behind Georgia, U.K., Canada in 2016 Top Feature Film Production

5 hours ago

California was the shooting location for 12 of the top 100 box office performers last year, trailing Georgia, the U.K., and Canada, a report by FilmL.A. showed Tuesday.

Georgia was the top-ranked location with 17, followed by the U.K. with 16, and Canada with 13. Films shot in California that were released last year included breakout hit “La La Land” and “Sully,” along with three films — horror-thrillers “Ouija: Origin of Evil” and “The Conjuring 2” and James Franco-Bryan Cranston comedy “Why Him?” — that received tax credits under the state’s expanded tax incentive program.

Additionally, five animated films — “Zootopia,” “Moana,” “Trolls,” “Finding Dory,” and “Kung Fu Panda 3” — were shot in California.

The state ramped up its tax credit program in 2015 by expanding its annual allocation of credits from $100 million to $330 million and establishing a selection system that gave priority to the jobs created by the films. The California tax credit »


- Dave McNary

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Samuel Goldwyn Takes North American Rights to Israeli Comedy ‘Holy Air’

6 hours ago

Samuel Goldwyn Films has acquired North American right to Shady Srour’s “Holy Air.” Jan Naszewski’s New Europe Film Sales is handling world rights.

Holy Air” stars Srour (“Ana Arabia”), Laetitia Eido (“A Borrowed Identity”), Samuel Calderon (“Munich”), Tarik Copti, Dalia Okal, and Byan Anteer. The film had its world premiere at Tribeca Film Festival.

The comedy centers on Adam, a Christian Arab living in Nazareth – “a member of a vanishing minority within a minority in the Holy Land and the Middle East,” according to a statement. “His wife Lamia is a strong, beautiful and progressive Arab woman, who runs a foundation for women’s rights.”

When Adam hears that Lamia is pregnant and his father falls very ill, he evaluates his life and realizes that he has not achieved much.

“Despite all his business ideas failing so far, he gives one last try to make it big. And »


- Leo Barraclough

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‘Annabelle: Creation,’ Sofia Coppola’s ‘Beguiled’ to Screen at LA Film Festival

6 hours ago

The LA Film Festival will host an advance screening of “Annabelle: Creation” and an advance screening of Sofia Coppola’s “The Beguiled.”

The festival, now in its 23rd year, will open June 14 at the Arclight Culver City with the world premiere of “The Book of Henry” and close on June 22 with a showing of Aubrey Plaza’s “Ingrid Goes West.”

Annabelle: Creation” is the sequel to the highly successful 2014 movie “Annabelle” about a demonic doll introduced in “The Conjuring.” The film, due for an Aug. 11 release, is directed by David F. Sandberg and stars Stephanie Sigman, Talitha Bateman, Lulu Wilson, Anthony Lapaglia, and Miranda Otto.

Related

Kirsten Dunst and Sofia Coppola on Hollywood Sexism, Their Feminist ‘Beguiled’ Remake

The Beguiled,” which is premiering at the Cannes Film Festival, is screening June 15 at the La Film Festival as part of a Focus Features 15th anniversary celebration with five movies including revival programming. »


- Dave McNary

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