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Panama City — Pimienta Films, one of Mexico’s leading production outfits, is completing production on Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma,” his first picture lensed in Mexico since “Y Tu Mama Tambien,” and “Birds of Passage,” from Colombia’s Oscar nominated Ciro Guerra (“Embrace of the Serpent”).
Pimienta is also prepping its first TV series, “Monstruos Perfectos,” which recently received development support from the Mexican Film Institute (Imcine) under the new TV series support scheme launched in late 2016.
“Monstruos” is set in Mexico and will be produced by Pimienta, with external producers Marion d’Ornato and Enrique M. Rizo. Rizo has worked with Celis as second assistant director on “Semana Santa,” and as production manager on “Tempestad,” “Soy Nero,” and “The Untamed.”
“This will be my first experience in TV,” Celis revealed to Variety, although he refrained from outlining the story. “I’m really happy to jump aboard. For me this is completely new world. »
- Martin Dale
Hollywood’s biggest studios are gathered in Las Vegas to preview their upcoming films for theater owners and the press. Are there any sure bets? Here’s the latest buzz from CinemaCon, which runs through Thursday:
Cinemacon Buzzmeter What’S Hot And Cold At This Year’S Exhibitor Confab In Vegas:
“Downsizing” Sure to go down as Alexander Payne’s most bizarre film. Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig as a couple who decide to shrink themselves in order to live the good life. The 10 minutes that screened were out there, but hilarious and compelling. (Paramount)
- Variety Staff
Paramount has been through a bruising leadership shakeup, but Megan Colligan, the studio’s distribution and marketing chief, said at CinemaCon on Tuesday that it was a new day for the studio.
Colligan said that the appointment of Jim Gianopulos as studio chairman “marks a new moment.” Gianopulos led Fox’s film business for 16 years, and is known for his command of the global entertainment business.
Jim Gianopulos Named Paramount Chairman/CEO (Exclusive)
“We are thrilled to have him leading the ship and taking us into the future,” Colligan said.
Paramount’s corporate parent Viacom was consumed in a battle for control that pitted former chairman Philippe Dauman against Shari Redstone, the daughter of company founder Sumner Redstone. Dauman was forced out last summer. Brad Grey, Paramount’s head for 12 years, later followed him to the exit door. He was undone by a string of money losers such as “Ben-Hur” and “Zoolander 2. »
- Brent Lang
Why Daniel Espinosa’s sci-fi horror is very much worth your time.
You might already have a number of personally justified reasons to skip Daniel Espinosa’s outer space horror-thriller Life, written by the Deadpool and Zombieland scribe duo Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. For starters, the general lack of interest in it might be weighing down your own willingness (Forbes’ Scott Mendelson reports the movie only made a measly $12.2 million weekend debut.) Or its overall “meh” critical reception — with an underwhelming 66% score on Rotten Tomatoes (just 46% when you look at Top Critics only) — might be the deal-breaker for you. Or perhaps you have room for one and only one set-in-space horror per year inside of you, which you already reserved for Ridley Scott’s upcoming Alien: Covenant.
Due respect, you will be missing out, and not just on its first-rate and diverse ensemble »
- Tomris Laffly
Sandra Bullock's children might have a little brother or sister in the near future! An insider shares a brand new update with E! News about the Gravity star's life at home with longtime love Bryan Randall and her two little ones, 7-year old son Louis Bullock and 5-year-old daughter Laila Bullock. "Sandra is not opposed to having more kids in the future," our source says. "She has her hands full with her career, but having children is what she is most proud of in her life." And while Bullock is no rush to tie the knot with her photographer beau, their relationship is as serious as it gets. The insider reveals, "They have discussed spending »
The crew of a space station is picked off, one by one, by an extraterrestrial life form which seems to view the human contents of the craft as some kind of alien finger buffet. And if that premise sounds more than a little familiar, that’s because Daniel Espinosa’s enjoyable sci-fi horror movie shares narrative DNA with everything from Tarkovsky’s Solaris to Danny Boyle’s Sunshine to, most glaringly of all, Ridley Scott’s Alien. But although this is undeniably an Alien rip-off, it’s an Alien rip-off that announces itself with a dizzyingly audacious zero-gravity single-shot sequence in which Ryan Reynolds wrests a wounded satellite out of orbit using a rob otic grabber claw. With this stunning set piece, cinematographer Seamus McGarvey more than meets the challenge set by »
- Wendy Ide
If Hollywood’s revitalized interest in space — embodied by Gravity, The Martian, and Interstellar — has proven anything, it’s that the galaxy is terrifying enough without the presence of extraterrestrial life. As the horrors of eternal darkness, flying debris, spacesuit malfunctions, and grappling with the psychological effects of loneliness weigh on our protagonists, Life attempts to up the ante by adding to the equation a creature hell-bent on destroying every human in its path. Although wholly derivative of the sci-fi touchstones that came before it, Daniel Espinosa’s streamlined, down-and-dirty approach makes for a refreshingly self-contained survival thriller.
Beginning with an extended, zero-gravity-replicating single take that hovers through the International Space Station, we’re introduced to the crew (made up of Jake Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Ferguson, Ryan Reynolds, Hiroyuki Sanada, Ariyon Bakare, and Olga Dihovichnaya), who have found the first proof of life beyond Earth. A space probe heading back from »
- Jordan Raup
Brendon Connelly Mar 23, 2017
Since DreamWorks Animation got snapped up by Universal, it seems several films have been cancelled. So what's actually happening?
If we imagine that the acquisition of Pixar by Disney was some kind of seismic shift for the Emeryville animation house, then Dreamworks Animation, by comparison, must be living in the red-hot cradle of a hyperactive volcano.
Animated films take so long, from concept to production to release, that recent Dreamworks titles are making their eventual escape from a corporate context which bears little relation to where they were conceived.
The Croods is a particularly good example. It was, originally, going to be a stop-motion film produced at Aardman with a screenplay by John Cleese. Without it ever being cancelled outright, this project continued to evolve, as Dreamworks twisted and turned like a kaleidoscope around it, in to the final product. The plot was different. The characters were different. »
Behold the power of being alone.
For all the powerful imagery film can capture and create, sometimes it’s still the most basic, simplest shots that can convey the most meaning and resonate strongest with audiences. Take, for example, any shot of a lone figure— perhaps in silhouette, perhaps not — against a vast landscape, the only person in sight. It’s an image that’s been utilized time and again in films like The Revenant, Tree of Life, Gravity and even some not shot by Emmanuel Lubezki, as evidenced by the following montage from Nacho Ozores that has compiled four dozen examples from across cinema history.
Don’t get me wrong, though, not all these lone figures are lonely. Some are contemplative, pensive, resolved, introspective, and other such things that require loneliness. There are even moments of triumph inside loneliness, the celebrations we save only for ourselves. Ozores has found all of these, and »
- H. Perry Horton
Ryan Lambie Mar 21, 2017
Nb: The following discusses a few plot points in Life, but only ones you've seen in its trailer.
See related Fast & Furious 8, and cinema’s strangest family The forgotten casualties of the Fast & Furious franchise Fast & Furious 9 and 10 release dates confirmed
Life immediately distinguishes itself from other post-Alien, monsters-in-space movies with one simple concept: it's not set in the future, but the present. Its events don't take place on a ship somewhere out there in the galaxy, but in the International Space Station orbiting Earth.
So when an alien organism's discovered in a soil sample retrieved from Mars, and a group of scientists begin studying it, there's an added layer of tension: in astronomical terms, the events are taking place on our own front door step.
Swedish director Daniel Espinosa, »
Why is it that practically every time sci-fi characters discover evidence of extraterrestrial life, they are just as swiftly confronted with creative new ways to die? As “we are not alone” scenarios go, “Life” is no exception, although it’s unusually intelligent for so much of its running time — picture white-knuckle “Alien” hijinks grounded by “Gravity”-strong human drama — that the lame-brained last act comes as a real disappointment (unless you’re determined to read this Sony-released Mars-attacks thriller as an origin story for Spider-Man’s Venom nemesis, which it is not).
Still, overlook its inevitable wah-wah ending (cue sad trombone sound effect), and “Life” is far better than the trailers made this me-too outer-space opus look. Assuming that “Passengers” hasn’t quashed audiences’ appetite for space-station movies, and that sci-fi enthusiasts wouldn’t rather simply wait for Ridley Scott’s fast-approaching “Alien: Covenant,” then director Daniel Espinosa’s mostly-smart, »
- Peter Debruge
Great horror movies are, among other things, an exercise in style and tone. Alien differed from earlier monsters-on-a-spaceship films because it took its subject matter seriously and featured stunning design work from director Ridley Scott and his collaborators. Gravity wasn’t the first film about astronauts trapped in space, but it was one of the most striking thanks to Alfonso Cuaron’s dizzying use of camerawork and digital filmmaking to create what appeared to be a story told in one seamless take.
This brings us to Life, a space horror film which feels like an unholy amalgam of Alien, Gravity, plus a dash of Prometheus, John Carpenter’s The Thing and Nigel Kneale’s The Quatermass Xperiment. Life’s individual parts aren’t unique, but the way they’ve been »
Now that Alfonso Cuarón has wrapped production on “Roma,” the Film Stage has put together a helpful primer on the film’s cinematographer. Emmanuel Lubezki had previously served as Dp on each of the director’s films save for “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”; their most recent collaboration, “Gravity,” earned them both Academy Awards. Now that Galo Olivares is stepping up, take a moment acquaint yourself with his prior work.
Cuarón shot “Roma” along with Olivares, who’s worked on a number of productions in Mexico over the last several years: “La Rabia de Clara,” “Australia,” “Hear Me Lord.”. “Returning to my country with this specific project was something very personal, because we made a film set in the ’70s, with many elements and experiences of my childhood,” said Cuarón of “Roma, »
- Michael Nordine
It's been a hot minute since we've seen an Alfonso Cuaron picture up on the big screen (2013's Gravity), but we have some good news on that front! Thanks to The Playlist (and its readers), we have some information regarding Cuaron's new film, Roma. First and foremost, Cuaron held a press conference and announced that the movie has already wrapped! The Playlist also reported some story details, in that the... Read More »
- Sean Wist
He’s worked on every Alfonso Cuarón film, except for Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and it looked like Emmanuel Lubezki would reteam with the director for his follow-up to Gravity, but it turns out that won’t be the case. The Children of Men director recently wrapped up production on his next drama, Roma, and we’ve got details both on his new cinematographer and the story.
It was previously known the small-scale drama chronicles a year in the life of a middle-class family in Mexico City in the early 1970s. In a press conference this week, as filming wrapped, the director announced the drama will feature a major setpiece depicting The Corpus Christi Massacre, in which student protesters were assaulted by paramilitary forces, with a death toll estimated to be around 50 people.
Cuarón also talked about his deep ties to the project, which incorporates many experiences from his childhood, »
- Jordan Raup
Alfonso Cuarón, the creative mind behind Children of Men and the Oscar-winning Gravity, has officially wrapped filming on Roma, an intimate Mexican drama that has spent the past 16 years simmering on the back-burner.
The filmmaker, who spoke at a new conference in Mexico City (via The List), echoed the advice given to him by friend and colleague Guillermo del Toro when explaining his decision to circle back to his native homeland, before teasing that Roma is a 1970s period drama loosely inspired by Cuarón’s own experiences as a child and his Mexican identity. Beyond that, there are precious few details available for the director’s deeply personal project – no casting announcement, no synopsis – but sources claim it will involve the infamous Corpus Christi Massacre, an event in which soldiers killed liberal student protesters in Mexico City circa 1971, in some capacity.
Working in tandem with production designer Eugenio Caballero (Pan »
- Michael Briers
Director reveals title and plot details of his upcoming Mexico-set film.
The project saw the director return to his native Mexico for a 1970s-set drama about a year in the life of a middle-class family.
“Movies are like a cereal box - at the bottom there is the promise of a toy,” he told reporters.
”Gravity was that cereal box and I got that little toy, which usually leads to a bigger film with more production, with more stars. But I decided to return to Mexico City to make this movie with the resources I had always dreamed about.”
He added: “I can live abroad, but my head »
- email@example.com (Orlando Parfitt)
Alfonso Cuarón is back! The filmmaker has remained relatively quiet since winning Best Director at the Oscars three years ago for “Gravity,” but at a press conference (via Filmeweb) in Mexico earlier today, he confirmed he has finished production on his next movie, a family drama titled “Roma.” This is the first time the title has been revealed.
News broke last September that Cuarón would be directing a new movie set in Mexico, his first since “Y Tu Mamá También” made him a star on the international film circuit. At the time, the only details around the project were that it would be set in the 1970s and follow the year in the life of a middle-class family. The director is remaining tight-lipped on plot details for now, but he did reveal just how important it »
- Zack Sharf
After the blockbuster, technically challenging, multiple Oscar winning “Gravity,” Alfonso Cuaron has returned to his small scale indie roots, mounting production on a new movie last fall. Featuring a cast of mostly little known actors, plot details have kept tightly under wraps, but an alert reader (thanks Arturo!) has pointed us the direction of intriguing new details.
Cuaron held a press conference today to announce the wrap of the movie, which is titled “Roma.” The film follows a middle-class Mexico City family in the 1970s, but it will also depict the The Corpus Christi Massacre, in which student demonstrators were killed by elite Mexican soldiers.
Continue reading Production Has Wrapped On Alfonso Cuaron’s Next Film, Title And New Details Revealed at The Playlist. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
The past few years of Best Director winners have proven that cinema stylists who can deliver scale and scope often get rewarded: see Ang Li’s “Life of Pi,” Alfonso Cuaron’s “Gravity” and A.G. Inarritu’s “The Revenant,” not to mention Damien Chazelle’s “La La Land.”
Read More: 2018 Oscar Predictions
But the directors also recognize breakout talent (Benh Zeitlin’s “Beasts of the Southern Wild”) and great international directors such as Pedro Almodovar, Michael Haneke and Mike Leigh. And they appreciate films featuring a showcase performance or two.
Sundance standouts “Mudbound” and “Call Me By Your Name” boast sprawling ensemble casts and lush rural settings in the American South and Italy, respectively. Will the Academy directors welcome Dee Rees and Luca Guadagnino into their ranks, or “My Name is Doris” director Michael Showalter, who delivered a small-scale heart-tugger of a true romance, “The Big Sick”?
They may »
- Anne Thompson
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