20 items from 2014
For this week’s brand new spotlight piece (after taking a week off), I wanted to cite an A-lister who is known as one of the most deeply committed actors of his generation. Yes, it’s Christian Bale, an Academy Award winner who just overflows with talent. Once considered an incredibly snubbed actor who never quite captured Oscar’s attention, he’s since moved on to a much more respected part of his career, while also stepping effortlessly between blockbusters and independent fare. At this point, he’s almost a favorite of the voters and a multiple time nominee. As such, he’s someone I’d wanted to shine the spotlight on for some time, I’ve just been waiting for the right moment… Bale got started briefly as a teenager in television movies, but for most, the first real exposure to him came in Steven Spielberg’s Empire of the Sun, »
- Joey Magidson
“Chicago Pd” just added a bad mother (we'll shut our mouths). “Shaft” star Richard Roundtree (also formerly of “Desperate Housewives”) is joining the NBC fire-fighting drama for a multiple episode arc. Also read: Big Screen to Small Screen: 27 Movies Being Made Into TV Shows (Photos) Roundtree will play Chief Boden's (Eamonn Walker) father on the Wolf Films/Universal Television drama series. Roundtree's Wallace Boden Sr. is a retired detective who makes a surprise appearance in Chicago after the birth of his grandson. However, His volatile relationship with his son causes friction during the visit. Also read: NBC, Nat Geo and »
- Tony Maglio
That was quite the mic drop from Marvel last night. Their super secret event in Hollywood was seemingly a response to their Distinguished Competition’s recent divulgence of their plans for a Shared Cinematic Universe, as Marvel similarly decided to share all of their superhero movie plans all the way up through the next decade. Not only that, but they challenged DC’s race to the title of first superhero film fronted by a woman, and the first fronted by a person of colour.
On the Warner Bros side is Wonder Woman and Aquaman. Then Marvel had to go and spoil it by announcing a Carol Danvers Captain Marvel film and, at long last, a solo movie for Black Panther. Both have had their respective film projects rumoured for decades, with Panther especially getting close on a number of occasions, with Wesley Snipes rumoured for the title role »
- Tom Baker
Exclusive: ICM Partners has signed writer/director/producer John Singleton. It comes as he prepares to direct the long gestating Tupac Shakur biopic Tupac. It’s hard to believe that it was 23 years ago that Singleton came right out of USC and changed the business with his breakout Sony hit Boyz N The Hood. The hot button picture established the urban film as a viable genre with an under served audience waiting for good films. It also made Singleton the youngest director and first African American to get an Oscar nom. He flies under the radar, but has helmed hits that include Poetic Justice, Higher Learning, Shaft, 2 Fast 2 Furious, Four Brothers; he produced and financed Hustle & Flow, the breakout indie as well as Baby Boy and Black Snake Moan. Singleton was repped by Wme. He continues with Underground manager Trevor Engelson and attorney Stephen Barnes.
- Mike Fleming Jr
Over the years, American novelist and screenwriter Richard Price has seen many of his works make smooth transitions from the page to the screen. His book The Wanderers was adapted by Philip Kaufman into a now-iconic coming-of-age film, and Spike Lee’s take on Clockers earned strong reviews. Additionally, Price’s work as a screenwriter has been highly successful – among his accolades are an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay (for The Color of Money) and a Writers Guild of America Award (for HBO’s The Wire, on which he served as a writer). Now, Sony is betting on Price’s ability to deliver another strong drama by entering talks to adapt his upcoming work The Whites.
- Isaac Feldberg
Although Bradley Cooper was not physically onscreen during this summer’s Guardians of the Galaxy as the feisty and volatile Rocket Raccoon, his role voicing the smallest defender of the universe put him squarely on the path to becoming a bonafide action star. That raccoon knew what he was doing around a ray gun. And no, starring in the 2010 reboot of The A-Team definitely does not count. Cooper has never been an actor who has sat idly in his roles, picking parts that run the gamut from comedy, to romance, to drama and satire; it’s a natural progression that transforming into an action star would be next. Warner Bros. has a plan, acquiring the book rights to Mack Bolan, a character created by Don Pendleton, to create a starring vehicle for Cooper. The author chronicled Bolan in 37 novels often referred to as “The Mafia Wars,” but ghostwriters kept him alive in hundred of other serializations over »
- Samantha Wilson
Welcome back to Mystery DVD Club. The idea behind this is simple: we went and bought a whole host of films that we hadn't heard of before, none of which cost us more than a few pounds. Then, we sent them to a bunch of our writers, without telling them what 'film' they were going to receive. Could we unearth a hidden gem? Aliya is hopeful...
When you start looking into the career of Isaac Hayes, you find out he was good at a lot of things. He co-wrote great hits such as Soul Man and When Something Is Wrong With My Baby. He produced a lot of brilliant records for Stax. He was a hugely successful singer, and reinterpreted a lot of Burt Bacharach classics into long soulful epics. He was the voice of Chef in South Park. »
How many times as Samuel L. Jackson said "mother f*cker" in filmc According to The Huffington Post and this following supercut, 171 times in 27 different movies. Here's the breakdownd: School Daze (1988): 1 motherf*cker Jungle Fever (1991): 7 motherf*ckers Strictly Business (1991): 1 mother- what Menace II Society (1993): 5 motherf*ckers True Romance (1993): 4 motherf*ckers Fresh (1994): 1 motherf*cker Pulp Fiction (1994): 26 motherf*ckers Die Hard: With a Vengeance (1995): 7 motherf*ckers Hard Eight (1996): 1 motherf*cker The Great White Hype (1996): 2 motherf*ckers The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996): 3 motherf*ckers Jackie Brown (1997): 37 motherf*ckers The Negotiator (1998): 2 motherf*ckers Rules of Engagement (2000): 5 motherf*ckers Shaft (2000): 13 motherf*ckers Formula 51 (2001): 6 motherf*ckers Basic (2003): 2 motherf*ckers In My Country (2004): 1 you mother- choke move Freedomland (2006): 1 motherf*cker, 1 brotherf*cker Snakes on a Plane 3 motherf*ckers Black Snake Moan (2006): 6 motherf*ckers Soul Men (2008): 24 motherf »
- Brad Brevet
"Looks like somebody used a landmine to clear their sinuses." Way back towards the beginning of the year, the first trailer for the live-action adaptation of the Japanese anime movie Kite debuted, showing Samuel L. Jackson in what seemed like a grittier, alternative sequel to Shaft. Now a new trailer shows a little more of what we can expect from the film. It's got an R-rating, so this won't be a tame thriller, and the world in which the story is set seems cool enough. Plus, this seems like an interesting role for Callan McAuliffe (Flipped) to continue his acting career. Could this be one of Jackson's surprise hits? Watch the trailer now! Here's the latest trailer for Ralph Ziman's Kite from IGN: Kite is directed by Ralph Ziman and based on Yasuomi Umetsu's iconic Japanese anime of the same name. When her cop father is killed, a »
- Ethan Anderton
Urban Action Showcase is an event to showcase action and martial arts to the world. The events are presented by Action Scene Combat (Asc) Productions, a production company which was founded in 2000 by Demetrius Angelo. Demetrius worked on movies and tv shows, not only as a fight choreographer, but also as an actor and director. Some of them include S.E.A.L.S Domestic Warfare (TV series), 3 X Harder: My Man’s and ‘Em and more. Demetrius also has a great background in Martial Arts, studying in styles such as Western Boxing, Chinese Boxing, Kobudo and many more.
Past events have brought many stars which include Michael jai White (Blood And Bone), Robert Samuels (Dont Give A Damn), Kelly Hu (Martial Law), Fred “The Hammer” Williamson, Ron Van Clief and many more great stars. Urban Action also brings you workshops to get involved with, »
When mixing black and white movie characters as either friends or foes on the big screen should not produce any gray areas at all. Whether amiable or adversarial the pairing of interracial tandems makes for an interesting sociological study in cinema where tension, togetherness, stereotypical profiling and mutual or reluctant acceptance makes for some captivating film fodder.
Sure, in many ways it is an overused cliched in the movies to produce racial tandems for the sake of the entertainment to allow the creative juices to overflow. In Salt and Pepper: Top 10 Black and White Movie Tandems we will take a look at various “salt and pepper” teams as they come together in the name of law and justice, hostile necessity, friendly frivolity or professional attachment to bring movie audiences a sense of adventure and curiosity in the name of comedic or dramatic license. Maybe you have your favorite cultural »
- Frank Ochieng
Bruce Lee’s short film career left a lasting impression on action cinema. His major breakout hit, Enter The Dragon, set the bar for the martial arts tournament film. When the 80’s rolled around the sub-genre was further popularized with the breakout success of Jean Claude Van Damme with Bloodsport, and then later, Kickboxer. These films seemed to find a willing audience on the big screen, but even more so, on video. These films also appealed to producers too. Unlike perhaps the Rambo style film and all the pyrotechnics and disposable war vehicles required, a good martial arts film could be shot for peanuts.
Step forward legendary low budget producer/director Roger Corman. The formula seemed simple. Pluck a martial arts expert from somewhere and have him fight his way through disposable opponents until fighting the imposing villain of the piece. »
- Gary Collinson
Every movie has to have its signature song and that certainly goes for the action-oriented males in film that are fortunate to have these finger-snapping tunes represent them on the big screen. The movie theme song indulges the audience and delivers a whole new kind of intrigue and feeling that we invest in the roguish ruffians on the big screen that some men would like to emulate and the ladies would love to cozy up to intimately.
There are music selections that do bring to mind the euphoria of the male action-packed characters we regard highly despite their moral compass. Maybe one can get excitable when hearing Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man” tune for the Marvel Comics superhero of the same name? Perhaps any of the musical themes for the countless James Bond films tickle your fancy? (there are two included in this article incidentally). Your preference might be in »
- Frank Ochieng
Dynamite Entertainment has announced a deal to publish Shaft.
The publisher will bring the private eye to the page with comics and graphic novels, reports Comic Vine
Dynamite will also be releasing prose novels as well as gaining the rights to re-print all existing Shaft books.
"The literary craftsmanship that built John Shaft sent him into the world fully formed and moving," said Steve Kasdin, literary agent for the Tidyman estate.
"You knew who and what he was from Jump Street. So much so that even a less than stellar sequel or two didn't kill his standing. The consensus seemed to be: 'Oh my Lord, they done put poor Shaft in another bad movie'.
"I'm thrilled with Dynamite's vision for Shaft, and look forward to his new adventures. »
We’re back with another edition of the Indie Spotlight, highlighting recent independent horror news sent our way. Today’s feature has first details on multiple projects including Night of the Living Deb, The Broadcast, Dial 9 to Get Out, and House of Forbidden Secrets, a monster themed giveaway from The Hub’s Spooksville, artwork from The Walking Dead Tribute, trailers for Infliction and Damned Love, and much more:
Night of the Living Deb Casting News: “Night of the Living Deb is an indie movie in development from producer Kyle Rankin (Battle of Shaker Heights, Infestation). Attached actors include David Krumholtz (“Numb3rs,” This is the End, Ray), Michael Cassidy (Argo, “Men at Work,” “The Oc”), Ray Wise (“Twin Peaks,” “Reaper,” “Mad Men”).
It’s a female-driven action-horror rom-com set in the world of a zombie apocalypse on Christmas.
The crowdfunding campaign is gaining popularity for its unusual approach: rather than the »
- Tamika Jones
Elementary, Season 2: Episode 18 – “The Hound of the Cancer Cells”
Written by Bob Goodman
Directed by Michael Slovis
Airs Thursday nights at 10 on CBS
After a few fairly by-the-numbers entries of Elementary in the past weeks, “The Hound of the Cancer Cells” grounds the detective series back into the sphere in which it usually excels: character. Even with a guest turn from character actor Mather Zickel, the main crime plot is lacking in terms of drawing the viewer into something that she ought to care about. That might sound like a harsh criticism given that Elementary is essentially a police procedural, but a lacking crime plot doesn’t have to be an obstacle. Nor does it have to be the A-story of a given episode. “The Hound of the Cancer Cells” makes good on that by bringing two different character-based issues part of its concern.
Both, actually, revolve around Detective Bell. »
- Sean Colletti
The idea that only a British director such as Steve McQueen with British stars could have made Hollywood confront America's slavery legacy is a popular one with fans of UK cinema. But is there any foundation for it?
The bookies, at least, are of one mind: Sunday's Oscars victor will be either Gravity or 12 Years a Slave. The space spectacular must surely rank as the greatest-ever achievement of British film craftsmanship; the Louisiana-set drama doesn't even qualify as a UK film. Nonetheless, Britain's cinema chauvinists aren't all rooting for Gravity. There is something about its rival that inspires yet fiercer patriotism.
Of course, unlike Gravity, Slave features British stars. But that doesn't fully explain its hold on British hearts. Something else is involved: after decades of guilty silence from Hollywood, many believe, a British director has laid bare America's historic shame. Steve McQueen's feat is thus a rare transatlantic putdown of the swaggering yanks. »
- David Cox
Singleton announced the news on twitter, saying: “The time has come to tell your story. I promise to keep it real and true to your sould. Bigg Js50 Niggaaz/Thug Life.”
The film follows the rapper’s rise to being one of the most popular MCs as well as his increased participation in the East Coast-West Coast Rap rivalry, and his death on September 7, 1996 when he was gunned down on a street corner in Las Vegas, where he died 6 days later. His murder was never solved.
“Tupac was the guy who I planned to do a lifetime of films with,” Singleton said. “His passing deeply affected my life as well as countless people in this world. His life story is as important to my generation.”
There’s still no »
- Laura Frances
The late director David R. Ellis was supposed to reteam with his Snakes on a Plane star for a live-action adaptation of the Japanese anime movie Kite. But since he died just before production was supposed to begin, South African director Ralph Ziman (Gangster’s Paradise: Jerusalema) had to take over the project. It's been a year since then, and now it sounds like the project is gearing up for the big screen release as Bloody Disgusting has gotten ahold of an early trailer for the film introduced by star Samuel L. Jackson, proclaiming his affection for the original work. There seems to be some cool action, but Jackson could just as easily be playing Shaft again in this film and there wouldn't be much of a difference. Watch it! First trailer for Ralph Ziman's Kite, discovered by Bloody Disgusting (see a 5-minute clip there too): Kite »
- Ethan Anderton
There continues to be talk of the all-women version of The Expendables, so why not an all-black version? Actually, there already kinda was one way back in 1996. Blaxploitation stars Fred Williamson (Black Caesar; Hell Up in Harlem), Pam Grier (Foxy Brown; Coffy), Jim Brown (Slaughter; The Dirty Dozen), Ron O’Neal (Super Fly) and Richard Roundtree (Shaft) and director Larry Cohen (Black Caesar; Hell Up in Harlem) came together for a movie titled Original Gangstas. It was sort of what The Expendables is all about now — nostalgia for the action movies of the ’80s and early ’90s with a round up of legendary action heroes who are now middle-aged or older — but then, it was in tribute to the African-American-focused genre of the ’70s as well as an answer to the rise of the urban crime films that broke out through the early work of John Singleton, the Hughes Brothers and Mario Van Peebles, the »
- Christopher Campbell
20 items from 2014
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