15 items from 2015
Ang Lee is one of a small number of filmmakers we trust with seemingly gimmicky innovations. His adaptation of Life of Pi provided us with further reason to accept that 3D can be an artistic tool and not just a means for Hollywood to increase ticket prices. Now, we can put our faith in the concept of high frame rate, as Lee's next feature, the 3D war movie Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, will reportedly be shot digitally at 4K resolution and 120 frames per second. You are probably now thinking of Peter Jackson, another filmmaker we've tended to trust with new cinema technology. He shot all three Hobbit movies at 48 frames per second, but after viewers reacted negatively to its employment on the first installment, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey...
- Christopher Campbell
It’s still baffling to me that a film franchise that began in 2001 with a fairly forgettable movie about cars is now seven films deep and stronger than ever. Not only that, but its latest installment—Furious 7—is one of the highest grossing films of all time. And it’s only been in theaters for 17 days. Universal Pictures announced today that with Friday’s grosses included, director James Wan’s Los Angeles-centric sequel will cross the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office. It is now the fastest film to ever achieve that benchmark, as well as Universal’s first movie to ever reach $1 billion in initial release. Those are some crazy statistics. I thought it was a mostly Ok movie; it’s better than the forgettable Fast & Furious 6 but not as fun as Fast Five, though given the circumstances it's a miracle it works this well, and »
- Adam Chitwood
To celebrate the release of ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies‘ and the epic ‘The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy’ box set on Digital Download Now and Blu-ray 3D™, Blu-ray™, DVD on 20th April, we have prizes in store for three lucky winners!
The Entire Epic Adventure
Follow Bilbo Baggins, who – along with the Wizard Gandalf and 13 Dwarves, led by Thorin Oakenshield – is swept into an epic and treacherous quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor.
Bilbo and the Dwarves escape the giant Spiders and Wood-elves of Mirkwood before encountering the mysterious Bard, who smuggles them into Lake-town. Finally reaching the Lonely Mountain, they confront the Dragon Smaug.
- Dan Bullock
Kristen Stewart, 'Camp X-Ray' star, to join cast of 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk' Kristen Stewart to join 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk' movie After putting away her Bella Swan wig and red (formerly brown) contact lenses, Kristen Stewart has been making a number of interesting career choices. Here are three examples: Stewart was a U.S. soldier who befriends an inmate (Peyman Moaadi) at the American Gulag, Guantanamo, in Peter Sattler's little-seen (at least in theaters) Camp X-Ray. She was one of Best Actress Oscar winner Julianne Moore's daughters in Wash Westmoreland and the recently deceased Richard Glatzer's Alzheimer's drama Still Alice. She was the personal assistant to troubled, aging actress Juliette Binoche in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of Sils Maria, which earned her a history-making Best Supporting Actress César. (Stewart became the first American actress to take home the French Academy Award. »
- Andre Soares
In this age of the instant franchise, it makes since that 20th Century Fox would want more than one new Alien movie from director Neill Blomkamp. And now, in a new interview with Empire magazine, he is hinting at just that. While he doesn't come right out and say that he is planning a two-part adventure, or even a trilogy, he does tease the possibility of 'more' than one movie. He explains:
"I'd come up with an idea, and when I met Sigourney on the set of Chappie,I presumed that she would never want to play Ripley again. Rightly or wrongly, I had that in my head. I also didn't know where you could go with her, given 'Alien 3 and 4′. So when I started speaking to her, I just wanted to know more about the process of making the first two films. The first two are the ones that I care about. »
As VFX technology marches on at speed, more and more of our favourite movie characters are being brought to life by actors driving a performance capture digital creation.
Though Andy Serkis's Caesar from Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Sharlto Copley's Chappie sit at the cutting edge today, in its current form it actually stretches back nearly 20 years to Star Wars's much-maligned Jar Jar Binks.
Go back even further and take into account rotoscoping - animators drawing over an actors' performance frame-by-frame - it's possible to mark Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as a landmark film in 1937. There, an actress was used as the basis for the titular princess.
Fast forward to 2015, and we're now at a point where many in the industry are calling for an 'Assisted Performance' Oscars category to recognise the work done by actors and VFX artists.
"I think the technology is relatively new, »
Would you like to know how Weta Digital was able to make those computer-generated apes in 20th Century Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes looks so darn good? Well, just click on the video below to see all the advancemed technology that was utilized to render them apes. A growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier. They reach a fragile peace, but it proves short-lived, as both sides are brought to the brink of a war that will determine who will emerge as Earth’s dominant species. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was directed by Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In), from a screenplay written by Mark Bomback, Scott Z. Burns, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver. The cast includes: Andy Serkis (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey), Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty, »
2Nd Update, Tuesday 4 Am Pt: Actuals are in for the international weekend with no major discrepancies save for a big drop on Taken 3. After Sunday’s report of a $57.2M total in non-Fox markets, the confirmed total came in at $39.8M. The difference was down to an incorrect cume provided to Fox by EuropaCorp for those territories. The overseas total is now a corrected $134M. In new pics, both JLo-starrer The Boy Next Door and Johnny Depp’s Mortdecai saw small bumps (up a respective $23K and $70K). American Sniper reloaded to $18M from a previously projected $17.6M.
Updated below are final numbers on those films along with: The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies, Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb, Penguins Of Madagascar, The Theory Of Everything, Unbroken, Seventh Son, Exodus: Gods And Kings, Into The Woods, Ouija, The Imitation Game, Birdman, Ex Machina, »
- Nancy Tartaglione
The Hobbit: The Battle Of Five Armies added $9.8 million at the overseas box office this weekend. Its international total now stands at $558 million and its global total is $803.1 million. The second highest grossing film of 2014 still has some fight left in but won't catch Michael Bay's billion dollar monster Transformers: Age Of Extinction. I'm sure director Peter Jackson is thrilled his final installment in the Middle-earth trilogy has crossed $800 million benchmark, but it is underperforming the two previous films in the series. 2013's The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug earned $960.4 million and 2012's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey grossed over a billion. For those of you interested in the domestic box office, American Sniper, which stars Bradley Cooper ("Guardians Of The Galaxy"), smoked the competition with $88 million and Blackhat, which stars Chris Hemsworth ("Avengers: Age Of Ultron"), couldn't even crack the top ten in its »
I'm sure someone is fan-editing this even as I type, but since it's a slow week and since no one alive would actually want to watch a two-hour speculative video composed entirely of content we've already seen in eight-plus hours of other movies, here's a rundown you can read in five or ten minutes, in an armchair by a fire, the way J.R.R. Tolkien intended. Omitting the very first shot of Bilbo striking a match (because this isn't Schindler's List), we open on Bilbo disappearing down the circular tunnel of Bag-End and then continue through the preamble and the Erebor prologue, as they appear in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. (This sequence will now be the site of Peter Jackson's only cameo in the film,...
[Read the whole post on twitchfilm.com...]
Update, Monday Jan. 5: And with the turn of the New Year, the domestic box office is up 6.5% for the first four days of 2015 with $210.2M versus the same period in 2014 which counted $197.4M according to Rentrak. The post-New Year’s Fss clocked in with $154.6M, down 26% from the post Christmas frame of $209M — but no one is sobbing. Why? Because this year’s post New Year’s frame was up a superb 10% from 2014’s $141.2M. Here’s the top 20 actuals– Apd:
Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five (WB), $21.7M, 3,875 locations, $5,608 average, Total cume: $220.6M, Wk 3 Into The Woods (Dis), $18.7M, 2,538 locations, $7,379 average, Total cume: $90.8M, Wk 2 Unbroken (Uni), $18.2M, 3,190 locations, $5,696 average, Total cume: $87.7M, Wk 2 The Woman In Black 2: Angel of Death (Relativity), $15.M, 2,602 locations, $5,775 average, Total cume: $15.M, Wk 1 Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb (Fox), $14.5M, 3,802 locations, $3,819 average, Total cume: $89.8M , Wk 3 Annie (Sony), $11.3M, »
- Anthony D'Alessandro and Brian Brooks
Currently, Eddie Redmayne is garnering serious Oscar buzz for portraying the famous physicist Stephen Hawking, but if his 'Bilbo Baggins' audition for Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey had went better he might not have had the time to be in The Theory of Everything. The role eventually went to Martin Freeman ("Fargo"), who Jackson always claimed was his number one choice from the get go. Even so, Redmayne was asked to tryout for the part and during an interview on the Graham Norton Show, Redmayne gave them a taste of his audition. "I went to this audition, and I'd been really rigorous about it, and didn't want to just do my usual boring thing," Redmayne said. "So I went on YouTube and I found Ian Holm, who'd played it in The Lord of the Rings, and I tried to copy his character. I arrived there, and the »
In some ways, it feels like there wasn't really all that much hype surrounding the release of the third and final instalment of Peter Jackson's big screen adaptation of The Hobbit, but The Battle of the Five Armies is a box office success regardless. The movie amassed an impressive $52.2 million over the weekend, but has yet to open in China. That will no doubt add a decent amount to the already extremely impressive $722.9 million that the movie has earned worldwide. However, it's still a little too early to say how much it will end up grossing in total. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey made $1 billion back in 2012, and The Desolation of Smaug followed that up with $958 million the year before last. What did you guys think of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies? »
The ‘Hobbit’ finale started 2015 impressively, topping the U.S. box office with $9.3 million at 3,875 theaters to lift its 16-day total past $198 million.
Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” will become the 12th title among 2014 releases to top $200 million on Friday. The New Line-mgm tentpole is 10% ahead of 2013’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” at the same point and 7% behind 2012’s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.”
“Five Armies” jumped 55% on New Year’s Day from its $6 million take on New Year’s Eve.
Disney’s eighth day of star-studded musical “Into the Woods” stayed solid with $8.1 million at 2,507 sites, pushing its eight-day total past $72 million. Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine, Emily Blunt and James Corden star in the film, based on the Stephen Sondheim musical.
- Dave McNary
“Hobbit” fans led by way on the final day of 2014 at the U.S. box office as New Line-mgm’s “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” grossed $6 million to lift its total to $189.5 million after 15 days.
“Five Armies” edged Universal’s holiday hit “Unbroken,” which took in $5.9 million on New Year’s Eve to finish its first week at $62.5 million. Disney’s seventh day of “Into the Woods” followed closely with $5.3 million to push its one-week gross past $64 million.
The top three put a positive note at the end of a disappointing 2014 with grosses falling 5.2% to $10.3 billion.
“Five Armies” is outperforming last year’s “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” by 9% at this point of its run. It’s about 5% behind 2012’s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” which crossed the $200 million mark on its 15th day on its way to a $303 million total in the U.S.
- Dave McNary
15 items from 2015
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