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There’s before The Dark Knight, and there’s after The Dark Knight. Before The Dark Knight, superhero movies were big for Hollywood and Christopher Nolan was a culty stylist and everyone loved Batman. After The Dark Knight, superhero movies were the defining Hollywood product and Christopher Nolan was everyone’s favorite Hollywood director and everyone really loved Batman.
You can try to explain The Dark Knight’s success by looking at the underlying factors of where we were at at the time — “we” as a nation, “we” as a global moviegoing public, “we” as a geekifying popular culture. A brutal election year faced America. »
- Darren Franich
In 2014, it’s difficult to appreciate the awe felt by uninitiated audiences who saw Raiders of the Lost Ark in theaters in 1981. Think about the film’s opening scenes, which introduce Indiana Jones and his now-iconic fedora in the jungles of South America. He narrowly avoids getting shot in the back by his mutinous guides, proves his Zorro-esque expertise with a whip, cleverly maneuvers through the deadly booby-traps of an ancient Peruvian temple, flicks away tarantulas like they’re gnats, nabs the prized golden idol but sets off a chain-reaction of destruction that includes a giant boulder chasing him back out into the sunlight, »
- Jeff Labrecque
Every summer has a dominant blockbuster, but it’s not every year that the season’s biggest movie inspires a legitimate mania. Ghostbusters, which surrounded some of the funniest guys on the planet with expensive — though slightly cheesy — special effects, was a certifiable phenomenon. In 1984, your classmates, your teacher, your pen-pal in Nairobi, even your half-deaf grandmother knew the emphatic, enthusiastic chanted response to the winking question, “Who you gonna call?” Thirty years later, everyone still knows the answer.
- Jeff Labrecque
Fat, drunk, and stupid may not be the best way to go through life, but it sure does create one memorable film character!
Movies have often been set in and around college campuses, but none quite like Animal House. From toga parties to food fights, the film not only introduced us to many collegiate cinematic clichés, but pretty much reinvented the entire genre. When you think of a college movie, you think of Animal House.
John Belushi made a huge leap from TV onto the big screen as Bluto, the exact opposite of what you think a fraternity boy would »
- Jake Perlman
If you like comedy and you don't know who Ivan Reitman is...well, you should. After all, this is the man who produced the classic "National Lampoon's Animal House" and directed (deep breath) "Meatballs," "Stripes," the immortal "Ghostbusters," "Twins," "Junior," "Dave"...the list goes on and on. His collaborations on those first few movies, with the likes of Bill Murray and the late Harold Ramis, should be taught in comedy film school somewhere.
Reitman, oddly, also produced the first two horror movies ever directed by David Cronenberg ("Shivers" and "Rabid") and has produced or directed a whole bunch of other films, but one thing he has not done is direct a sports movie -- until now. His new film, "Draft Day," stars Kevin Costner as the general manager of the Cleveland Browns and takes place on arguably the most important day of the football calendar.
Moviefone sat down with Reitman »
- Don Kaye
A boy, a girl, the breaking surf, some fumbled attempts at automobile lovin’, a hand-jive contest, a lycra-clad makeover, and a dozen of the greatest songs you’ve ever heard. With those raw ingredients, I present the latest installment of EW’s Summer Blockbuster month. Because we are “Hopelessly Devoted” to Grease, the first movie musical on this list takes the No. 18 slot. So let me tell you about it, studs.
We live in times fueled by a collective passion for nostalgia. Well before our nostalgia covered up a national snarkiness, though, Grease set the template with its saucy yet »
- Lanford Beard
New Orleans, La. It's nearly noon on the set of "22 Jump Street" and the star of the scene is laying flattened on the turf at Tad Gormley Stadium just outside of New Orleans, immobile. Dozens of extras, clad in football uniforms, look away. A man in a Saints shirt hovers above the featured player, taking in the decapitation and the splattered insides with growing frustration. "Is there any way of making it so that it doesn't fall apart?" he laments. The man is a second [or possibly third] unit cinematographer and he's currently facing the difficult challenge of a thespian who clearly isn't ready for his close-up, in this case a roast beef sandwich that refuses to catch the light in the right way. Maybe it's the glare off the lettuce or maybe it's the lifeless meat, but effort is being put into capturing the fumbled sandwich just right. There's a stunt sandwich off to the side, »
- Daniel Fienberg
Although a lot of questions remain about the status of Ghostbusters III and when it will eventually be produced, filmmaker Ivan Reitman says has made a crucial decision regarding his involvement when the camera starts rolling for the long-anticipated project.
In a phone interview over the weekend for his latest film, Draft Day, Reitman told me that the death in February of his longtime friend and collaborator Harold Ramis – who co-starred and co-wrote the first and second Ghostbusters – was a big factor in leading him to decide that he wasn't going to direct the third film.
"When I came home to Los Angeles from Harold's funeral last month in Chicago, I actually had a meeting with Sony a couple days later, where I told them that I wasn't going to direct Ghostbusters III," Reitman told me. "I had planned on directing it for the three or four years that I had worked on the script, »
- Tim Lammers
“Cinderella story. Outta nowhere. A former greenskeeper, now, about to become the Masters champion. It looks like a mirac… It’s in the hole! It’s in the hole! It’s in the hole!”
Harold Ramis, who died last month, is an honorary St. Louisan. He’s not really from here (he’s from Chicago), but he has a star on the St. Louis Walk of fame because he attended Washington University here and based parts of his Animal House script on his experiences as a member of Wash U’s Zeta Beta Tau fraternity. His directorial debut was the classic 1980 comedy Caddyshack which will kick off this year’s Reel Late at the Tivoli Midnight series when it screens as a tribute to Ramis this Friday and Saturday nights (April 4th and 5th). The Tivoli is located at 6350 Delmar Blvd. in University City.
Caddyshack is a comedy classic that will never get old. »
- Tom Stockman
There's a double dose of Ellen Page news today, which we'll kick off with word that she's in talks to play Judith Jacklin opposite Emile Hirsch as John Belushi in the biopic of the former Saturday Night Live man, his excessive life and tragically early death.A film about Belushi's life has been in the works for years, passing through different writers, directors and potential stars before ending up (we assume) with The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty writer Steve Conrad re-working the script and calling the shots and Hirsch making a deal to play the Animal House/Blues Brothers star.Page is negotiating to take on Jacklin, who was Belushi's girlfriend from high school, married him and ended up devastated by his death. The actress will have a prime source for any research questions: Jacklin, now known as Judy Belushi-Pisano, is a producer on the film alongside Belushi's »
Ellen Page is in talks to play the wife of John Belushi (Emile Hirsch) in Steve Conrad's upcoming indie biopic "Belushi". Jacklin was Belushi's loving high school girlfriend who eventually married the comedian and was left devastated by his death.
The film explores the comedian's rise to fame on SNL and films like "Animal House" and "The Blues Brothers" before he died of an overdose at 33. Filming begins later this year in New York. [Source: The Wrap]
Having wrapped "Fifty Shades Of Grey," Dakota Johnson is in early talks to play the love interest of Johnny Depp's Whitey Bulger in Scott Cooper's true story drama "Black Mass" at Warner Bros. Pictures.
Dylan Penn, daughter of Sean Penn, will make her acting »
- Garth Franklin
When Juno became a breakthrough hit in late 2007, Ellen Page seemed to have all the qualities of a true Hollywood star. However, despite a few high-profile roles here and there, most recently in 2013′s The East, the actress has kept relatively quiet. Now, Page is looking to get back in the spotlight as she’s signed on to play Judy Belushi Pisano, the wife of the late John Belushi, in an upcoming untitled biopic that stars Emile Hirsch as the beloved comic actor.
The Promotion‘s Steve Conrad is on board to write and direct while Pisano will help produce as well as provide the source material for the script, which comes in the form of a biography she wrote entitled “Belushi.” The film will explore the actor’s “rise to fame in the late ’70s, from Saturday Night Live to his starring turns in Animal House and The Blues Brothers. »
- Jordan Adler
Recently Juno and X-Men: The Last Stand star Ellen Page made headlines by coming out as a lesbian last month, but now she's in the news for landing a new role in the developing biopic about the late comedian John Belushi. The film is based on the book Belushi, which was written by Judith Belushi Pisano, the widow of the "Saturday Night Live" star, and now The Wrap reports Page will play her (maiden name Judith Jacklin) in the film. She'll star alongside Emile Hirsch as her husband, who once simultaneously had a #1 movie (Animal House), a #1 TV show (with "SNL") and a #1 music album (Briefcase Full of Blues). Read on! Back in January, Hirsch said that The Spectacular Now and Divergent star Miles Teller was going to play Belushi's friend, fellow comedian and Blues Brothers star Dan Aykroyd, but that's yet to be confirmed. Either way, this sounds like »
- Ethan Anderton
Here's the latest casting news for the following films: Ellen Page is in talks to star opposite Emile Hirsch in Steve Conrad's untitled John Belushi biopic. Dakota Johnson is in negotiations to play the love interest of Johnny Depp's Whitey Bulger in Scott Cooper's Black Mass. Kathryn Hahn and Ed Oxenbould will star in M. Night Shyamalan's latest effort, Sundowning. James Caan has signed on for Jacob Tierney's Preggoland, scripted by and starring Sonja Bennett. Hit the jump for more on each picture. First up from The Wrap is news that Page would star as Belushi's wife, Judith Jacklin, in the untitled biopic. "Jacklin was Belushi's loving high school girlfriend who eventually married the comedian and was left devastated by his death. The indie drama will explore Belushi's rise to fame in the late '70s, from Saturday Night Live to his starring turns in »
- Dave Trumbore
"Tonight, is for Harold Ramis," Jason Reitman declared upon taking the stage at yesterday's Film Independent at Lacma Live Read. Reitman, whose father Ivan Reitman, collaborated with Ramis on "Animal House" and the "Ghostbusters" films, chose an earlier draft of the "Groundhog Day" script for the performance -- a much darker draft in which Bill Murray’s character, Phil, actively counts the number of times he has re-lived February 2, Groundhog Day.As previously announced via Reitman's Twitter, the roles of Phil and Rita were performed by Jason Bateman and Elizabeth Reaser, while Jeff Ross and Mae Whitman provided the voices for Wpbh-TV9 cameraman Larry, Nancy Taylor and a host of other supporting characters.Stephen Tobolowsky's participation, however, came as a pleasant surprise. Tobolowsky, who originated the role of "Needlenose" Ned Ryerson, reprised his role onstage for last night's live read with just as much gusto as ever. His initial »
- Shipra Gupta
Film Independent at Lacma’s Live Read performances are always special – cold recitations of classic screenplays, the readings are never rehearsed, recorded, or repeated. But Thursday night’s live read of the existentialist comedy “Groundhog Day,” directed and co-written by the late Harold Ramis, had a particularly special, melancholy tinge.
After a short introduction from Film Independent at Lacma curator Elvis Mitchell, who called the pic “the closest we’ve come to having a Frank Capra film for the modern era,” director and series creator Jason Reitman spoke of his admiration for Ramis, who collaborated with his father Ivan Reitman on five projects.
“I was 12 days old on the set of ‘Animal House,’” Reitman recalled. “Think about that.”
Following his brief remarks, Reitman introduced the night’s cast, which included Jason Bateman in Bill Murray’s Phil Connors role, Elizabeth Reaser as Andie MacDowell’s Rita, Jeff Ross as Chris Elliott’s Larry, »
- Andrew Barker
Modern audiences have come to rely on sexed-up movies like 300: Rise Of An Empire to fill their cinematic quota of naked flesh, but it took decades of boundary-pushing before glorified skin flicks could get a mainstream release. Early in its history, Hollywood filmmaking was viewed as corrupt and immoral by the general public and tried to reform its image by creating the Production Code in 1930, a set of standards meant to clean up filmmaking, which forbade any inference of perversion, or, licentious or suggestive nudity.
This prudishness would not last: with the invention of television and increased competition from foreign films, Hollywood needed a way to lure audiences into the theatre, and it was somewhat inevitable where they would turn. In the late 60s the code was abandoned entirely and the nudity floodgates were opened.
The abundance of nudity led to an intriguing development – rather than simply for titillation purposes, »
- Travis Earl
With St. Patrick’s Day around the corner, the Irish are poised to celebrate the arrival of Christianity in their homeland, while Americans are simply looking for an excuse to wear green, eat corned beef, and drink copious amounts of green beer. Sounds good right? To get you in the mood to celebrate the feast of St. Patrick, I’ve compiled a group of movies that will help inspire your party planning this year.
After looking at the movies I picked out for this list, the thing that strikes me is how many are set in and around schools – high school and college respectively. I don’t know about you, but I certainly can’t remember any school I attended being like any of these movies. So, without further ado, here are my picks for the Top 10 Party Movies of All Time. Did I leave your favorite out? »
- Dane Jackson
Based on the merits of being a “How To” guide for aspiring parents, Neighbors is a one star movie about two adults selfishly putting their own insecurities before the well-being of their newborn baby. We’re talking some gratuitously debaucherous middle-aged partying including magic mushrooms, sword fighting, shot ripping, and every other fraternal stereotype possible. Wildly inappropriate, of course, but with Nicholas Stoller’s outlandish direction, Andrew J. Cohen and Brendan O’Brien watch their screenplay turn into a riotous Greek life comedy that’ll make you question every responsible decision you made throughout your college career. Stoller himself admitted that only one member of his production team actually lived a fraternity life in college, so you can imagine the generalizations and stereotypes blown wildly out of proportion, but it’s all in the name of comedy – and the most epic rager that frat life could possibly imagine.
Mac (Seth Rogen »
- Matt Donato
Connectivity was the theme in Austin on Saturday: Kevin Bacon made his first trip to the SXSW Film Festival to chat about his career, including the 20th anniversary of the “six degrees” game that links him to every other actor in Hollywood. The star of Footloose has gone from being “horrified” by the pop phenomenon to embracing it for his charity network: SixDegrees.org. Film veteran Bacon is now starring in the second season of his first TV show, Fox’s The Following, which was just renewed for a third season despite this year’s ratings slip. Bacon reflected on his career with Deadline as SXSW’s 2014 edition kicked off: Deadline: Your first role was in Animal House, which the recent passing of Harold Ramis brought back into mind. And that role couldn’t be farther from the “Kevin Bacon” audiences have come to know. Kevin Bacon: Between me and Neidermeyer, »
- JEN YAMATO
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