10 items from 2016
Get ready for a good cry - The Choice, Nicholas Sparks's latest adaptation, is hitting theaters this week. As the cameras rolled in 2014, I visited the breathtaking set in the coastal neighborhood of Middle Sound Loop in Wilmington, Nc. Fans of the novel will recall there are two parts to this heart-tugging story: Travis (Benjamin Walker) and Gabby (Teresa Palmer) fall in love and then Travis makes the hardest decision of his life. I experienced a day of the couple's cute beginning, when the veterinarian and physician's assistant are getting to know each other as neighbors. The warm weather lends itself to Southern cookouts, sunny boat rides, and of course, the opportunity for party-loving Travis to tick off Gabby. In between these fun scenes, the author and actors sat down with me to chat one on one about bringing this Sparks fan favorite to life. Read on for all the details, »
- Nick Maslow
Alex Graves ("Homeland," "Terra Nova," "Fringe") has been set to direct and executive produce the pilot episode of NBC's straight-to-series adaptation of the Liam Neeson-led hit movie franchise "Taken".
The TV series will serve as a modern-day prequel to the film franchise and depicts how Bryan Mills developed and sharpened his particular skill set.
EuropaCorp TV USA and Universal Television are producing the series on which Alex Cary ("Homeland") will serve as writer and executive producer. Luc Besson, Matthew Gross, Edouard de Vesinne and Thomas Anargyros will also executive produce.
That isn't the only high-profile pilot scoring a helmer today as Niels Arden Oplev ("Mr. Robot," the Swedish "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo") has been hired to direct and executive produce the pilot for NBC's supernatural drama "Minight Texas" based on the novel trilogy by "True Blood" author/creator Charlaine Harris.
The story is set in a remote »
- Garth Franklin
Alex Graves has been tapped to direct and executive produce the pilot episode of Taken, NBC’s straight-to-series adaptation of the hit movie franchise from EuropaCorp TV USA and Universal Television. Written and executive produced by Alex Cary (Homeland), who serves as showrunner, the Taken TV series is a modern-day prequel to the film franchise that depicts how Bryan Mills — played in the movies by Liam Neeson — developed and sharpened his particular set of… »
NBC is stepping into the nostalgia trend this pilot season, ordering a pilot for a “Cruel Intentions” sequel series, Variety has learned.
The original writer and director of “Cruel Intentions,” Roger Kumble, is attached to the pilot as director. He will also serve as exec producer, along with Lindsey Rosin and Jordan Ross who co-wrote the script for the modern-day reboot. Hailing from Sony Pictures Television and Original Film, Neil Moritz and Pavun Shetty are also EPs.
NBC’s “Cruel Intentions” follows the beautiful and cunning Kathryn Merteuil, the character played by Sarah Michelle Gellar in the ’90s flick, as she vies for control of Valmont International as well as the soul of Bash Casey who is the son of her brother, »
- Elizabeth Wagmeister
Paris – Comedies don’t travel, right?
Wrong. A pioneering French study, unveiled by its movie export org UniFrance Monday is Paris, showed that, contrary to industry, lore Gallic laffers were France’s No. 1 export line over 1995-2014, followed by thriller/adventure fare: Think Luc Besson EuropaCorp actioners, led by “Taken” installments.
That said, what distinguishes France, the world’s second-biggest film exporting nation, is its arthouse production, UniFrance president Jean-Paul Salomé observed. Drama indeed, after genre, is France’s fourth biggest export biz, in terms of international box office.
Boasting a wealth of detail and range of analysis typical of UniFrance (as Cnc French film board) studies, French Film Genres suggested Gallic movies sold 326 million tickets abroad, 1995-2014. That compares to 234 for thriller/adventure, 120 million for fantasy, sci-fi and horror and 97 million for drama. Next best sellers were documentaries (41 million), animation (40 million), war/period films (34 million), biopics (21 million), and crime »
- John Hopewell
It's not easy being semi-responsible for one of the most despised movie characters of all time, but Ahmed Best, who brought Jar Jar Binks to life in the "Star Wars" prequels and cemented his place in film infamy, seems to have taken it in stride. Best was interviewed by British journalist Jamie Stangroom for Stangroom's YouTube series where he talks to some lesser-known actors from the "Star Wars" franchise. Best says he was performing in "Stomp" when he was cast as Jar Jar. Initially, he was just the motion capture actor, but George Lucas ended up using his voice for the part as well. Best didn't expect the character to be so reviled (who would?) and admits that it was "painful" and he took it "a little bit" personally. "You put a lot of your own personality into it and you get emotionally and personally invested in the work that you do, »
- Sara Morrison
Everyone can breath a sigh of relief, at least for a little bit. Jar Jar Binks will probably never appear in a future Star Wars movie, even a spinoff that takes place within the prequel timeline. At least not played by the actor that originated the Gungun in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace. Ahmed Best has confirmed that he is 100% done with the character. Here's what he had to say to Jamie Stangroom on the Youtube series These Are the Actors You are Looking For. Asked if he would ever return, the actor is quite adamant.
"No, I think I've done my damage. I'm good with where I stand in the Star Wars universe. I don't need to be back. [If I was asked], I would say no. I'm not interested in coming back. I did what I did and I thought it was great. I thought it was fun. And »
In a shocking turn of events, Deadline is reporting that due to scheduling conflicts, director Juan Antonio Bayona (The Impossible) has exited Paramount Pictures' & Plan B Entertainment's upcoming World War Z sequel, which stars Academy Award-winner Brad Pitt and has a script from Steven Knight (Pawn Sacrifice) & Dennis Kelly (Black Sea). Paramount is eagerly trying to kick off production on World War Z 2 this summer in order to get it ready for its wide release in Summer 2017. Bayona is currently deep into post-production on his latest directorial venture A Monster Calls, which stars Liam Neeson (Taken) & Felicity Jones (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), and felt that he couldn't finish his commitments on that film before this summer when he would have had to shift gears to World War Z 2. The studio released this statement to confirm his departure: “Bayona is no longer able to make »
When Liam Neeson stopped by Radio Andy on Thursday to discuss the new movie he's working on with Bono, he ended up revealing one very sweet story about his late wife, Natasha Richardson, to host John Benjamin Hickey. The actor explained that during their 1994 wedding in Northern Ireland, they had picked out Van Morrison's "Crazy Love" for their wedding song, but Natasha wasn't thrilled with the idea of having a traditional first dance. "Behind my back Natasha had been taking singing lessons to sing it to me," the Silence star revealed. "After the ceremony we were all going out to start the night's festivities and she grabbed the microphone and she sang me this. She had learned it, and I was like, 'Wow!'" Liam and Natasha were married from 1994 up until her tragic death following a head injury from a skiing accident in 2009. Since then, he has been »
- Quinn Keaney
Warrior’s Gate centres on a teenage who is magically transported to China and learns to convert his video game skills into those of a Kung Fu warrior. The film is directed by Matthias Hoene (Cockneys vs Zombies) from a script by Luc Besson and Robert Kamen (Taken), and also stars Sienna Guillory (Resident Evil: Apocalypse), Mark Chao (Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon), Ni Ni (The Flowers of War) and Uriah Shelton (Girl Meets World). It is slated for release some time this year.
- Gary Collinson
10 items from 2016
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