17 items from 2016
It’s well known at this point that Nate Parker’s “The Birth of a Nation” was bought for a record-setting $17.5 million at Sundance this year, just as it’s well known that the writer/director/star — and by extension the film itself — is now mired in controversy. Less well known until now is how “The Birth of a Nation” was financed in the first place. The Hollywood Reporter broke down the $10 million that went into the project earlier this year, noting that Parker put $100,000 of his own money into it.
Read More: Nate Parker Says He Was ‘Vindicated’ in 1999 Rape Trial, Won’t Apologize
A dozen or so other sources backed him. Parker, Jason Michael Berman of Mandalay Pictures and Kevin Turen are responsible for tracking down approximately 60 percent of the film’s funding, with most of the rest coming from Aaron L. Gilbert of Bron Studios. Filmmaker Edward Zwick »
- Michael Nordine
After directing the last two “Kung Fu Panda” movies, Jennifer Yuh Nelson is set to make her live-action debut with “Darkest Minds.” Fox is developing the project, which is based on Alexandra Bracken’s trilogy of young-adult novels. The series centers around a telekinetic 16 year old in a postapocalyptic America ravaged by a pandemic known as Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration (Iaan).
Read More: Immersed in Movies: How DreamWorks Made Two Versions of ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’
With “Kung Fu Panda 2,” Yuh Nelson became the first woman to direct an animated feature for a major studio without a co-director. Prior to that she had worked on “Dark City,” “Madagascar” and the first “Kung Fu Panda.” In the series, some survivors of Iaan have developed superpowers and been consigned to internment camps by the government.
The first book was »
- Michael Nordine
The scholarship, launched in 2014 and worth $30,000, will see Doneman mentored by executive producer Shane Brennan, creator of CBS's.NCIS: Los Angeles, in the show's La writers room.
"Megan is an outstanding talent, who combines powerful storytelling with a determined work ethic," Screen Queensland Chair Linda Apelt said. "The opportunity to learn from the best of the best in the United States - at the »
- Staff Writer
Although Jurassic Park III made less money than The Lost World: Jurassic Park - which itself had made less money than the original Jurassic Park - there was never much doubt that Universal wanted another dino-stuffed movie from Steven Spielberg's Michael Crichton-inspired film franchise. The problem was working out exactly how to do this, after the sequels had failed to live up to the financial success and audience adoration of the first film.
Eventually, we got the box office-smashing Jurassic World and Chris Pratt in a natty waistcoat. But before that, tonnes of ideas came and went as Universal attempted to nail down the best way to resurrect the series without the help of ancient mosquituoes...
Early ideas stage
The long and winding »
The career trajectory of Alex Proyas is one that personally fills me with great sorrow, having lapped up his early work with glee. Breaking into the Hollywood mainstream with The Crow, and then immediately following that up with the weird and wonderful Dark City, the Australian director proved to be an endlessly inventive talent with an eye for wholly unique visuals. Then Knowing saw all the good will he had garnered come crashing down with a tornado of preposterous storytelling, muddy science, and Nic Cage going full Nic Cage. He hasn’t been seen or heard of for seven years, and now he makes his come back with Gods of Egypt, a wannabe epic fantasy that got off to the wrong foot that whitewashed a cast of Egyptian deities with the likes of Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Gerard Butler, and Geoffrey Rush. That proved to be the last of it’s worries though, »
- email@example.com (Tom White)
Ancient Egypt - a land of pyramids, colossal statues and unconvincing scorpions. Did you know that, in the time of the pharoahs, gods lived among ordinary mortals and could transform into huge, fire-spouting robots? Director Alex Proyas’ Gods Of Egypt may have been demolished by critics when it appeared in the Us earlier this year, but it’s certainly educational.
Proyas previously brought us such dark and moody delights as The Crow and Dark City, but Gods Of Egypt is completely unlike anything he’s made before. It’s big, it’s camp, it’s awash with CGI which varies in quality from shot to shot. In style and tone, it belongs in that same odd category of action fantasy films as Louis Leterrier’s Clash Of The Titans »
With the release of Captain America: Civil War, Samuel L. Jackson has appeared in all the McU films, as well as making a cameo as the character in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. He has made the role his own and it’s now hard to imagine anyone else in the role, but Nick Fury has appeared in a live action feature length TV movie in 1998 titled Nick Fury: Agent of Shield, where he was played by David Hasselhoff.
Now he’s seen as an ironic punchline, it’s hard to Hasselhoff playing the role, but then you remember he’d been an action star in Knight Rider, he played the lead in the biggest TV show in the world – Baywatch – in the 1990s; he was perfect for this schlocky throwaway TV movie. In retrospect it’s hard »
- Neil Calloway
The slow, soulful female vocalist has become a bit of a staple for movie trailers these days. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. One movie it works surprisingly well for, though, is Gods of Egypt. Summit Entertainment has cut a new trailer for the movie's home video release and we can't help but think this should have actually been the theatrical trailer. The fantasy epic directed by Alex Proyas (Dark City, I, Robot) hits Digital HD on May 17th and then will be followed by a physical release including a 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, a 3D Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray and DVD on May 31, 2016. The various Blu-rays and Digital HD releases also come with the following special features: - Deleted Storyboards - “A Divine Vision: Creating a Cinematic Action...
Kiefer Sutherland will bring his rich, soulful vocals and guitar licks to venues across the country beginning April 14. He'll perform for audiences with a set list that includes cuts from his folk-tinged album, Down In A Hole, set for release this summer. Kiefer Sutherland, known for his starring role on the Fox series 24, will bring his debut tour as a musician to 26 venues across the country beginning April 14. More dates will be added.
A professional actor his entire adult life, Sutherland starred in movies like Stand By Me, The Lost Boys, Young Guns, Flatliners, A Few Good Men, A Time to Kill, Dark City, Melancholia. Most recently, he starred for the first time with his father Donald Sutherland in a western called Forsaken. And he appears in the upcoming ABC series Designated Survivor.
Unknown to many during the course of his career, he has taken on other vocations with the »
Alex Proyas may still be licking his wounds after his latest effort, the big-budget fantasy epic “Gods of Egypt,” flopped hard with critics and audiences alike (he has subsequently gone on record as comparing film critics to “diseased vultures pecking at the bones of a dying carcass,” but that’s another story). “Gods of Egypt” will eventually be forgotten, and while the jury is out as to whether or not Proyas still has a great film left in him, there was a time back in the mid-to-late 1990s when he was a director whose work was singular. Proyas is probably best known for his brooding rock n’ roll revenge yarn “The Crow,” but I would argue that his 1998 neoi-noir “Dark City” is actually a better film: weirder, but more assured in its execution, and impressive in its conjuring of a hellish nightmare world. Read More: 7-Minute Video Essay Explores The »
- Nicholas Laskin
Gods of Egypt could have been amazing. Two things I enjoy very much are Alex Proyas (The Crow, Dark City, I, Robot) films and Egyptian mythology. So when the two came together, I had high hopes that Proyas could deliver a visually-stunning film that hit the right notes, story wise; was cast with fine actors stepping outside their comfort zones; and had some heart. I got one out of three.
Gods of Egypt is the story of a battle between two mythological Egyptian gods, the handsome, charismatic Horus (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and the gruff, always-shouting Set (Gerard Butler), who battle each other for the right to rule the land of the Nile after their father, Osiris (Bryan Brown), decides to abdicate. Horus is the chosen god, the righteous, yet cocky and selfish god of the air, and Set is the war-driven god of the dark. One good, one bad; you figure out which is which. »
Gods of Egypt was one of three new releases that went up against two-time box office champion Deadpool this weekend, but it failed to dethrone the superhero adventure. Deadpool ended up winning for a third weekend in a row with $31.5 million. Gods of Egypt debuted in second place with $14 million, while working from a massive budget of $140 million, making it the first high-profile bomb of 2016. The movie also failed to impress critics, with just a 13% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Earlier this morning, Gods of Egypt director Alex Proyas took to his personal Facebook page to trash the critics who dismissed his movie.
"Nothing Confirms The Rampant Stupidity Of Man-kind... Like reading reviews of my own movies. I usually try to avoid the experience - but this one takes the cake. Often, to my great amusement, a critic will mention my past films in glowing terms, when at the time those same films were savaged, »
Forget "13 Hours." With "Gods of Egypt," 2016 has its first bonafide megaflop.
That may seem a harsh way to describe a movie that opened near the high end of predictions, with an estimated $14.0 million, placing second only to the still-unstoppable "Deadpool." But remember, "Gods" cost a reported $140 million to make and was supposed to launch the next big fantasy franchise for Lionsgate, the studio behind the "Hunger Games" and "Divergent" films. This weekend's figures make the prospect of lucrative sequels very doubtful, especially since the movie looks like it's going to struggle to earn back even a fourth of its budget in American multiplexes.
In retrospect, it's hard to figure why the studio gambled so much on this film, given all the strikes against it that are apparent now. For instance:
1. The CastingGerald Butler and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau are not big box office draws, no matter how much you loved "300" or "Game of Thrones. »
- Gary Susman
Gods of Egypt is a silly, poorly acted CGI spectacle in the same vein as Clash of the Titans. It's hard to imagine this is a film from Alex Proyas. The Australian director is one of my favorites. Having made The Crow and Dark City, the most underrated science fiction film of all time. Gods of Egypt is disappointing on many levels; a half-hearted effort at best by Proyas. Here is a film about Egyptian gods, where the entire primary cast is white, except for a token appearance by Chadwick Boseman. I can only imagine the producers could never have predicted their release date would coincide with Oscar weekend, where the diversity issue has taken Hollywood by storm. That said, a diverse cast could not have saved this train wreck.
The story takes place in ancient Egypt where humans and gods live side by side in a paradise on the Nile. »
At a certain point in “Gods of Egypt,” an extravagantly silly foray into Afroasiatic mythology from the director Alex Proyas, one wounded deity begs another to show him mercy — a futile request as far as his enemy is concerned, but one that may strike a more receptive chord with the compassionate viewer (which is to say, any viewer who would buy a ticket to “Gods of Egypt”). Since the film enters theaters already in its death throes — undone by toxic word of mouth, much criticism of its predominantly white cast, and an opening-weekend box office projection of about 10% of its $140 million production budget — perhaps a little kindness would not be misplaced. So here goes: This is by any measure a dreadful movie, a chintzy, CG-encrusted eyesore that oozes stupidity and self-indulgence from every pore. Yet damned if Proyas doesn’t put it all out there with a lunatic conviction you can’t help but admire, »
- Justin Chang
Due to hit theaters this coming weekend, today’s media dump is something of a last push for Lionsgate to drum up excitement for Alex Proyas’ (The Crow, Dark City) sword-and-sandals-and-fantasy epic, though even factoring in Gerard Butler’s larger-than-life performance as the relentless god of darkness, we remain unconvinced.
Falling into a similar camp as Warner’s bombastic Clash of the Titans – and its lowly sequel Wrath – the cinematic effects fuelling the ancient action are certainly easy on the eye. Still, it’s difficult to foresee a scenario where Proyas’ feature can rise above the scathing white-washing criticisms to make much of an impact at the box office.
In this spectacular action-adventure »
- Michael Briers
Something strange is afoot with Gods Of Egypt. While we'll always look fondly upon director Alex Proyas for giving us The Crow and Dark City, there is something that feels so very off about his latest picture Gods Of Egypt, and it's all over the new international trailer for the film. Once upon a time, a film like Gods Of Egypt knew exactly what it was, and it... Read More »
- Billy Donnelly
17 items from 2016
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