5 items from 2015
If you've never seen MGM's celebrated 1959 "Ben-Hur," starring Charlton Heston and an astonishing chariot race--remember, effects were special back then, not CGI --you're in for a treat. The winner of 11 Oscars still holds up. And after HBO's "Rome" and Ridley Scott's "Gladiator" (let's forget holiday flop "Exodus," shall we?) and the VFX toolkits available today, it's easy to see why a reboot is tempting. Luckily, MGM and partner Paramount have signed up a visually sophisticated director adept at rip-roaring action and VFX (see "Night Watch" and "Wanted"): Moscow-based director Timur Bekmambetov. "Boardwalk Empire" and "American Hustle" star Jack Huston is beefing up to take on the Heston role of Judah Ben-Hur, and principal photography on the new "Ben-Hur" (February 26, 2016) has begun in Rome and Matera, Italy. Also starring are Morgan Freeman as Ilderim, Toby »
- Anne Thompson
Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted, Night Watch) is directing the movie, which is an adaptation of the Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ published in 1880. Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire) is portraying the title character, with Toby Kebbell (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) playing Messala, the friend who betrays him into slavery. Rounding out the cast are Olivia Cooke (The Signal), Ayelet Zurer (Man of Steel), Sofia Black D’Elia (The Immigrant) and Academy Award Winner Morgan Freeman (The Dark Knight Rises) as the man who trains Ben-Hur.
Shooting for the film is expected to start later this year, with a 2016 release date scheduled.
- Scott J. Davis
Having played the bizarre giant god-emperor Xerxes in 300 and its sequel Rise Of An Empire, Rodrigo Santoro is now in line to play another religious icon. He's negotiating to be one Jesus of Nazareth in MGM and Paramount's upcoming Ben-Hur remake. Timur Bekmambetov (Night Watch, Wanted) is directing. Yes indeed, ladies and gentlemen: Timur Bekmambetov has found Jesus. Thank you, we'll be here all week.In the 1959 film, Jesus shows up towards the end. Charlton Heston's Ben-Hur takes the ailing Tirzah (Cathy O'Donnell) to be healed, but they arrive too late. Jesus' trial, presided over by Pontius Pilate (Frank Thring) has already begun, and Ben-Hur then witnesses the events of the crucifixion. Jesus was played on this occasion by the opera singer Claude Heater, although his name doesn't appear in the credits.Taken once again from Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel (which actually carries on significantly beyond Jesus' execution), the »
Not as scary as Unfollowed, the Twitter-based shocker we’re working on, but still packing more than a shiver or two is Unfriended, a horror-thriller that boasts a new trailer set around Skype and social media. Click below to take a look at this antisocial network. Preying on social media insecurities (and lives) of teenagers, is a mysterious stalky figure hunting bloody vengeance for a viral video that led directly to a suicide a year earlier. Is the girl who killed herself, a despised bully called Laura Barns (Heather Sossaman), back from the dead or is this the work of some other crazed lunatic with superb tech skills? Either way, “billie227” has gory payback in mind. With Timur ‘Night Watch’ Bekmambetov and Jason ‘Blumhouse’ Blum the driving forces behind it, this one isn’t short of horror pedigree. The film’s new poster sells its concept fairly neatly. Unfriended makes »
Originally titled Cybernatural, Unfriended tells a tale of revenge that all unfolds on a computer screen, as a group of teenagers are stalked online by a mysterious and unseen figure. Given the high concept premise, this could have easily been yet another direct to DVD horror movie, but conceived and developed by Night Watch and Wanted's Timur Bekmembetov (handing the directing reins to Levan Gabriadze), this shows a hell of a lot of promise, delivering a unique, and highly effective, spin on a well worn premise. Check out the trailer below. Released: 17th April (U.S.)/ 1st May (Irl/U.K.) »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Tom White)
5 items from 2015
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