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If you’ve ever wondered just how much of Benedict Cumberbatch there is in Smaug, we have a Thursday treat for you. This fascinating extra from The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug’s forthcoming home-formats release pulls back the curtain on an off-set performance that’s as much physical as it is vocal. Sure, Cumberbatch may not have spent a decade sitting on a pile of treasure or gone full Stanislavski by hanging out with other wryms to interrogate their motivations in life but be in no doubt, Smaug is as much a meticulously prepped and fully-formed Cumberbatch performance as John Harrison or Sherlock. brightcove.createExperiences();This marriage of technology, as rendered by the tech wizards at Weta Digital, and acting craft is why directors like Peter Jackson and James Cameron are so keen to shift the ‘capture’ terminology from ‘motion’ to ‘performance’. The facial rigging originally pioneered for Avatar »
In the past two decades, Peter Jackson and his team have created five companies to service every aspect of filmmaking. These are among the most accomplished but misunderstood film companies in the world.
That’s because each was started without any hoopla. Ever since Jackson’s 1994 “Heavenly Creatures,” his films have gotten more ambitious, creatively and technically. So these companies were created to meet the needs of Jackson and the growing film industry in New Zealand. And after they were born, each started working immediately.
Aside from Weta Digital, now celebrating its 20th anniversary, there are four other companies: Weta Workshop, Park Road Post Production, Stone Street Studios and Portsmouth Road film-equipment company.
The various toppers, with typical Kiwi humor, sat down in Wellington »
- Tim Gray
Weta Digital is observing its 20th anniversary this year, but the celebration is low-key, because the team is too busy to rest on its laurels.
Top priorities include “The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies,” the culmination of 17 years and six films in the J.R.R. Tolkien canon; “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” slated to bow in 2016; and the upcoming “Avatar” films. Then on to other projects, both large and small.
Joe Letteri, the company’s director and senior visual effects supervisor, says, “If we can shoot it live-action, great. If not, we’ll do it digitally.” (Letteri is in the above photo, flanked by Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson.)
- Tim Gray
There’s lots of sequel news to share today – including updates on Terminator: Genisys and Guardians of the Galaxy – so let’s just get right into it. Filmmaker James Cameron is hard at work on his multitude of Avatar sequels, but it’s a well-known fact that he did some minor consulting on the upcoming Terminator: Genisys. Cameron won’t receive credit for his efforts on the latest entry in the sci-fi franchise, but he has revealed a bit of advice he handed out regarding how to fit a much older Arnold Schwarzenegger back into the franchise. “I wasn’t interested in producing it or working on it actively, but I did want to put in a good word for Arnold. I pointed out that the outer covering (of the Terminator) was actually not...
- Mike Bracken
He told Deadline the following:
“Outer covering (of the Terminator) was actually not synthetic, that it was organic and therefore could age. You could theoretically have a Terminator that was sent back in time, missed his target, and ended up just kind of living on in society. Because he is a learning computer and has a brain as a central processor he could actually become more human as he went along without getting discovered.”
So it may be no CGI or makeup to make him younger? We’ll see.
Cameron is not directly involved with the project and withholding his thoughts about it after reading the reboot script from Laeta Kalogridis. »
- Gig Patta
James Cameron doesn't do what James Cameron does for James Cameron. No, James Cameron does what James Cameron does because James Cameron is James Cameron, and although the Avatar director finds himself prepping for simultaneous production on three sequels to his Pandora-set box office juggernaut, he took a quick second to step away from that world to celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Terminator, which turned into a critical and box office success, launching his career and allowing him to continually raise the bar the way we know him to do. As with pretty much all popular franchises, save for Back to the Future, The Terminator is being rebooted, and with that comes speculation as to how franchise star Arnold Schwarzenegger will fit into the new movie given he's not exactly a spring chicken anymore. Although Cameron isn't actively involved in the production of Terminator: Genisys, he explained to Deadline »
- Jordan Benesh
This past week, James Cameron joined Arnold Schwarzenegger for a 30th anniversary screening of the original 1984 Terminator. While speaking about the event alongside producer Gale Anne Hurd, the director reveals he was the one that came up with a reasonable way to have Arnold Schwarzenegger reprise his role as a T-800 in Terminator Genisys.
James Cameron explains that he gave the idea directly to Terminator Genisys producer David Ellison because he wanted to see Arnold Schwarzenegger return, and he knew how that was going to be possible.
"I wasn't interested in producing it or working on it actively, but I did want to put in a good word for Arnold. I pointed out that the outer covering (of the Terminator) was actually not synthetic, that it was organic and therefore could age. You could theoretically have a Terminator that was sent back in time, missed his target, and ended up »
Deadline recently caught up with director James Cameron ("Avatar"), who is best known for writing and directing The Terminator (1984) and Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991). During the discussion the filmmaker was asked about the upcoming film, Terminator: Genisys. While he isn't officially attached to that project he did offer the producers some advice on how to include Arnold Schwarzenegger ("True Lies"). “I pointed out that the outer covering (of the Terminator) was actually not synthetic, that it was organic and therefore could age. You could theoretically have a Terminator that was sent back in time, missed his target, and ended up just kind of living on in society. Because he is a learning computer and has a brain as a central processor he could actually become more human as he went along without getting discovered.” In March, Cameron told MTV the "Termintor's flesh ages," so that information isn't new at all, »
Misty Upham found dead in Seattle suburb (photo: Misty Upham and Juliette Lewis) Actress Misty Upham, who had gone missing since October 6, 2014, was found dead on Thursday, October 16, in a wooded area along the White River in suburban Seattle. The cause and time of death remain unclear. Best known for her roles in Frozen River, which earned her an Independent Spirit Award nomination, and August: Osage County, Upham was 32. According to a statement her father, Charles Upham, sent to media outlets, Misty Upham was last seen on October 5, walking from her sister's apartment in Muckleshoot, Washington. Her father added that she suffered from bipolar disorder and had bouts of depression and anxiety — she had gone missing in the past — but said he didn't believe she was suicidal. "The truth is Misty is not stressed over money or career. Her career is going great," he wrote last Sunday, October 12. "As her »
- Anna Robinson
Friends for life, brothers from another mother, and dudes that make movies... James Cameron and Guillermo del Toro have been pals since the ‘90s. They met at a Fourth of July party. Del Toro eventually wound up living in Cameron’s guesthouse for a period of time, and following those days the men have traded opinions and advice regarding the other’s work. Cameron suggested the line in Cronos where Ron Perlman says, “Not my nose again!” Del Toro elaborates on their working relationship: “He’s helped with every one of my movies, except Mimic, where we were sequestered in Toronto and couldn’t show anyone. In Blade II, he gave me a few comments on the cut. I’ve been with him in the editing room for True Lies, Titanic, Avatar...
- Alison Nastasi
Along with the aforementioned duo, Djawadi’s previous credits include work on Clash of the Titans and this year’s Dracula Untold. Now, the experienced composer will take a trip to Azeroth along with Moon director Duncan Jones, who recently confirmed that production had wrapped on the live-action epic.
But Warcraft is far from completion, what with Industrial Light and Magic knee deep in special effects work. And given the fantastical setting of Jones’ film, it may be some time yet before we see a full-length trailer.
That said, during this year’s San Diego Comic-Con event, lucky attendees were fortunate enough to see some early footage for the film, which has since been billed as combining the epic scope found in The Lord of the Rings »
- Michael Briers
Filmmaker James Cameron has long moved on from his "Terminator" films and is now immersed in the world of "Avatar" with all his efforts currently focused on that film's numerous sequels set on the world of Pandora.
That doesn't mean he's completely out of the loop though regarding the upcoming "Terminator: Genisys". Attending a special 30th anniversary screening of "The Terminator" in Los Angeles on Wednesday night, Cameron was asked by Empire what he thought about next year's "Terminator" title, he says:
"I'm friendly with the filmmakers, the writer Laeta Kalogridis has worked with me on projects. I'm hoping it's great. I'd like them to get it right, and based on the script that I read there's a pretty good chance that it could. It looks like it could be fun."
Is he worried the film might damage his legacy?
"It's not my problem! It's like being a grandparent, the »
- Garth Franklin
Last night in Los Angeles, a select group gathered for a special anniversary screening of James Cameron’s cyborg classic, The Terminator, to celebrate its 30th birthday. It’s a little hard to believe the movie that kickstarted the time-travelling Skynet series is three decades old, especially as the sequels are still comin’.
Since Cameron’s opening instalment, we’ve seen three follow-ups, only one of which he directed (Terminator 2: Judgment Day.) Still, that’s not stopped others from reusing the characters and stories, especially after Annapurna Films snapped up the rights and are developing a new trilogy of Terminator pics, starting with next year’s Terminator Genisys.
Speaking to Empire at the screening last night, Cameron was asked for his thoughts on the upcoming outing and had the following to say:
“I’m friendly with the filmmakers, the writer Laeta Kalogridis has worked with me on projects,” he said. »
- Gem Seddon
James Cameron, John Carpenter, Peter Jackson, Christopher Nolan & Steven Spielberg. You’d be hard pressed to come up with five names who, over the past few decades, have build better worlds on the big screen. Avatar, Halloween, The Lord of the Rings, Inception and Jurassic Park are just the tip of the cinematic iceberg for […]
- Germain Lussier
The Keeping Room is ‘past-apocalyptic’ cinema. We like to imagine the end of the world coming with nuclear war, asteroid collision or alien invasion. Here, however, we see it as history, a terrifying world as cruel as The Road or Mad Max, where mankind can only crawl among the ashes, a world that’s already happened.
This particular apocalypse is the American Civil War, and its desperate survivors are three Southern women: sisters Augusta and Louise (Brit Marling and Hailee Steinfeld) and their former slave, Mad (Muna Otaru). With the sister’s parents dead, the women are left to scratch an existence in an empty, isolated farmhouse. Their world is one largely devoid of human life, as nearly every man has become gristle for the Confederate war machine and the women have fled in terror.
Under these extreme circumstances, social contracts have broken down. For one, former slave Mad is now the sister’s equal, »
- David James
Welcome To Issue 67!
If This Is Your First Time Here: Welcome! This is my weekly column where I talk about superhero movie/TV news, rumors, and speculation. Good week for a longview, new reader!
What an interesting few days it has been for comic book superhero movies and their intertwined universes.
First up, DC, who is making a valiant effort to be both the best and the worst of superhero TV right now (to be fair, they have more not-animated shows based on their properties), has apparently locked down a new prospective order for their cinematic universe and it’s next featured characters.
Press release it up!
It'll be two boys for Zoe Saldana! The Avatar actress is expecting twin boys with her husband Marco Perego, a source confirms to Us Weekly. The 36-year-old actress previously confirmed she's expecting two bundles of joy during an interview with E! News on Oct. 1. "I might need three costumes," she said when asked about her Halloween costume. Saldana's Crossroads costar Britney Spears was first to let slip that Perego and the actress will have their hands full with twins. When asked by Entertainment Tonight if she and [...] »
Director James Cameron has never had a problem with exotic alien planets, car chases, killer mercenaries from the future or anything of that sort. He’s inarguably one of the biggest and most successful directors of all time, having made some of the most lavish, spectacle-heavy blockbusters of the modern era (“Aliens,” “The Terminator,” “True Lies” and um, “Avatar”, just to name a few). It is instead small, intimate moments and honest-to-goodness human connection that he seems to have more trouble with (or perhaps less interest in). It’s a thought entertained by a segment of the American moviegoing public in 1997, when we all sat in a theatre at the end of “Titanic,” wondering why Rose (Kate Winslet) couldn’t just… scoot over a little bit to make room for her dying love Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) before he fell to the bottom of the freezing ocean deep, never to return. »
- Nicholas Laskin
Cannes — ITV Studios Global Entertainment has inked further pre-sales for “Thunderbirds Are Go,” ITV Studios and Pukeko Pictures’ reinvention of the classic children’s series, ahead of its world premiere at MIPJunior in Cannes, which is the kids’ programming part of TV market Mipcom.
“Thunderbirds Are Go” has been acquired by Noga in Israel, where it will launch in summer 2015 on its Kids Channel. Pan-Arab broadcaster Mbc has also bought the series to air on its children’s edutainment channel MBC3. This follows its acquisition by Australia’s Nine Network.
The series will be the first ever MIPJunior World Premiere TV Screening on Oct. 11 at 6 p.m. local time at the Palm Beach in Cannes. Richard Taylor, the co-owner of Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, and Itvs Ge’s executive producer, Giles Ridge, will attend the screening.
The series, which comprises 26 episodes of 30-minutes length, is produced by ITV Studios »
- Leo Barraclough
Guardians of the Galaxy managed to take over the box office, and deliver a pretty solid effort (which was surprising, because it looked silly), and the home release has a lot of great bonus content in store for you. It’s going to hit on December 9th, with plenty of time for holiday shopping, but for those who can’t wait, it’s available digitally on November 18th.
Get the full scoop below, and mark your calendars for this one.
Marvel’S Guardians Of The Galaxy Get it First on Digital HD plus Disney Movies Anywhere November 18th, and on Blu-ray™ 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray and On-Demand December 9th
Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy film has earned over $645 million worldwide and recently passed the $300 million mark at both the domestic and international box offices. Guardians of the Galaxy opened domestically August 1 with $94.3 million to become the biggest August debut »
- Marc Eastman
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