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The Director and The Jedi Review

‘The Director and The Jedi’ reminds us of how easy it is to forget the extensive amount of work it takes to get a film onto the big screen. The exhausting 10-12 hour days that the crew toil, the inconvenience of unforgivable weather conditions on a tricky location shoot, the rejig of the schedule and budget that was planned months in advance when a principle cast member inopportunely comes down with the flu on shoot day. As Producer Ram Bergman describes in the documentary the process is delicate like a ‘house of cards’: one problem could topple the whole structure.

The Star Wars director, Rian Johnson, was inspired to hire a documentary crew on set due to a childhood memory of watching a Bts feature on ‘Return of The Jedi’, claiming it was the first time he realised films didn’t just appear on screen by magic, but are
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Porg Secrets Revealed in New Last Jedi Behind-the-Scenes Video

While fans get ready for the Blu-ray and DVD release of The Last Jedi on March 27, a new preview was released that shows how the lovable creatures known as the Porgs were created. This preview, entitled "Meet the Porgs," will only be available on the Target exclusive Blu-ray, which takes fans behind-the-scenes on Skellig Michael Island during the production. Fans even get to see the unique birds that are native to Skellig Michael Island known as the "puffins," which served as the inspiration for the Porgs.

The video opens with director Rian Johnson stating that a good portion of the Star Wars: The Last Jedi story takes place on Ahch-to, which was filmed at Skellig Michael Island, a "bird sanctuary off the southwest coast of Ireland." Producer Ram Bergman, who has produced all of Rian Johnson's films including Brick, The Brothers Bloom and Looper, revealed that once they saw all
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Exclusive: Star Wars: The Last Jedi’s Rian Johnson has no interest in directing a comic book movie

After enjoying critical success with the indie films Brick, The Brothers Bloom and Looper, Rian Johnson made the jump to blockbuster filmmaking this past December as he ventured to the galaxy far, far away for Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

Despite a mixed reception from fans, the movie proved a hit with critics, grossed $1.332 billion at the worldwide box office, and saw Johnson rewarded by Lucasfilm with the keys to his very own Star Wars trilogy.

Speaking to Flickering Myth to promote the upcoming release of The Last Jedi on Blu-ray, we asked Johnson whether he had any interest in trying his hand with the other big Hollywood toy box: the superhero movie.

“I’m pretty happy with Star Wars [laughs],” said Johnson. “There’s a lot of comic book movies being made today that I really enjoy. Weirdly, I grew up with Star Wars, but I didn’t grow up reading comics,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Rian Johnson, Ethan Hawke, Lena Dunham Added to SXSW Conference

Rian Johnson, Ethan Hawke, Lena Dunham Added to SXSW Conference
The South by Southwest Conference and Festivals has added Lena Dunham, Ethan Hawke, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” director Rian Johnson, Tatiana Maslany, and Spike Lee to its lineup.

The event, which takes place March 9 to March 18 in Austin, also announced Tuesday that it has added several other notable speakers, including activist Chelsea Manning; “Westworld” cast members Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, and Jeffrey Wright; and YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki.

“The speakers announced today feature a diverse group of leaders and innovators that make SXSW the foremost destination for creative people,” said the festival’s chief programming officer Hugh Forrest. “As SXSW celebrates the 25th year of interactive and film, the cross-industry talent announced today reflects the ongoing convergence of the modern world, the trends we see throughout our programming, and the paramount reason for our now unified conference experience.”

Keynote speakers already announced for SXSW 2018 include Darren Aronofsky (film), Ta-Nehisi Coates (convergence), Lyor Cohen (music), [link
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Joseph Gordon-Levitt Writes Essay Passionately Defending Luke Skywalker’s Controversial ‘The Last Jedi’ Arc

Joseph Gordon-Levitt Writes Essay Passionately Defending Luke Skywalker’s Controversial ‘The Last Jedi’ Arc
Joseph Gordon-Levitt has come to the rescue of his friend and collaborator Rian Johnson, who just happens to be the writer and director of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” The actor was Johnson’s leading man in both “Brick” and “Looper” and had small cameo appearances in “The Brothers Bloom” and “The Last Jedi,” and now he’s penned an essay in which he passionately defends the decisions Johnson made for Luke Skywalker in the polarizing “Star Wars” sequel.

Read More:‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’: Rian Johnson and Mark Hamill Break Their Silence on Luke’s Storyline

Gordon-Levitt’s essay is titled “A New Old Skywalker” and weighs in on Luke’s controversial story arc, which has been pinpointed as one of the reasons the film has received so much backlash. The Skywalker we meet in “The Last Jedi” is a Skywalker we’ve never experienced on film before.
See full article at Indiewire »

Lucasfilm Reveals Every Star Wars: The Last Jedi Easter Egg

Star Wars: The Last Jedi‘s been out for nearly a month now and so far, has been met with widespread critical acclaim. That said, there is a certain disquiet rumbling amongst a subset of the fandom due to the movie’s bold choices and unexpected turns. In contrast to the familiar, nostalgia-tinged The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi is keen to challenge our presumptions about the saga.

All that said, it’s still made with a lot of love for what has come before and as such features many a nod to the previous films in the franchise. There are some great obvious ones, for example, such as R2-D2 replaying Leia’s hologram message from A New Hope, the attack on Crait calling back to the Battle of Hoth and, last but not least, the poorly-kept secret that was Yoda’s cameo.

However, Episode VIII also features a
See full article at We Got This Covered »

In Case You Forgot: 13 Places You've Seen Adrien Brody Before His Stint on Peaky Blinders

  • BuzzSugar
Image Source: Everett Collection We're currently enjoying Adrien Brody as Luca Changretta on Peaky Blinders, but his stint on TV certainly isn't his first big gig. Throughout his long and successful career, the American actor has appeared in more than 62 films and TV shows (as well as in one of our all-time favorite Christmas commercials) and has won 13 awards, including the Oscar for best actor in a leading role. But in case you need a refresher (or would like to see more of his work), here's where you might have seen Brody before. Related10 Places You've Seen Game of Thrones's Lena Headey Before Dummy, 2002 Image Source: Everett Collection In Dummy, Brody plays the role of Steven Schoichet, a man who decides to pursue his dream of becoming a professional ventriloquist. The Pianist, 2002 Image Source: Everett Collection In this critically acclaimed biographical film, Brody appears as a Polish Jewish radio
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What We Know About Joseph Gordon-Levitt's Last Jedi Character, Slowen-Lo

Image Source: Getty / Alberto E. Rodriguez Minor spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi below! We have to hand it to Star Wars: The Last Jedi - the movie really upped its game in terms of celebrity cameos this time around. There's one sequence in the film in particular that features a handful of eye-catching A-list characters, and it comes about halfway through The Last Jedi's two and a half hour runtime. Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong'o) instructs dynamic duo Finn (John Boyega) and Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) to find a master codebreaker (aka a "slicer") to help them take down one of the First Order's ships. When they finally do find the slicer in a Canto Bight casino, he's played by a mustachioed Justin Theroux. That same scene also features a small (and adorable) cameo from Carrie Fisher's dog, Gary Fisher, who's CGI'd to look like an alien.
See full article at BuzzSugar »

How Rian Johnson and His ‘The Last Jedi’ Team Tackled the Massive Undertaking of a New ‘Star Wars’

For Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” writer-director Rian Johnson worked with an A-list lineup of behind-the-camera talent. On Dec. 15, the day the film opened to spectacular box office, Johnson spoke with Variety about the contributions of his colleagues: several were veterans of his three previous movies (“Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom” and “Looper”) and several are Oscar winners. Here, he salutes their creative contributions — don’t call them technicians! — and spoke about such advantages as building sets rather than creating locations in a computer.

Cinematographer, Steve Yedlin

I’ve known him since I was a freshman at USC and he was still a senior in high school; we both volunteered to work on a film at USC. He was running the camera department on the set. I was useless. He showed me how to load a film camera and he’s shot every film I’ve done since then.

Shot by shot,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

How Rian Johnson Turned 'The Last Jedi' Into a Personal 'Star Wars' Blockbuster

How Rian Johnson Turned 'The Last Jedi' Into a Personal 'Star Wars' Blockbuster
Very, very early on in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, filmgoers find themselves looking at a familiar sight. (Spoilers, come on, you know the drill by now.) A villain – in this case, General Hux, modeling the latest interstellar Nazi-officer menswear collection – is standing on the bridge of a spaceship. The First Order bad guy knows of a rebel base located on a planet below them, and Hux is marshaling his forces to blast it into oblivion. An X-wing fights enters the scene; it's being piloted by our man Poe Dameron,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

Star Wars: The Last Jedi movie review: a great disturbance in the Force

MaryAnn’s quick take… Upends expectations, demythologizes the mythos, and takes an iconic series in a bold new direction with a story full of humor, courage, and dazzling imagery. I’m “biast” (pro): I’m a huge Star Wars fan

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

This is not going to go the way you think,” Luke Skywalker says to… well, someone who needs to hear it. Someone whose arrogance is borne of shortsightedness and narrow expectations. And this is also Star Wars: The Last Jedi’s word of warning to the audience. To us. This is the Star Wars movie, after all, from writer-director Rian Johnson, the guy who gave us The Brothers Bloom, a tricksy movie about con artists that knows we go into a movie about con artists with certain assumptions about what we’re about to see.
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

A Letter To Rian Johnson

It feels a little bit like Christmas morning around the house this morning, even though we’ve still got a week and change to go before the actual day, and that’s undoubtedly because all the women here are rousing themselves a bit early to get ready for what amounts to Christmas 2017, Hollywood style. (The cats have been up for some time already, and they too are very excited, but you know, that’s just their way.) You see, in a couple hours we’re all piling into the car and making the pilgrimage up the hill to Universal City to see Star Wars: The Last Jedi. When it comes to buying advance tickets for a big movie for the whole family to see together my dear wife knows no restraints, and if the movie is prefixed with the words “Star Wars,” then all bets are most assuredly off.
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Rian Johnson & Ram Bergman Talk ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Deleted Scenes And Finding Light In The Dark Of Episode VIII

Rian Johnson & Ram Bergman Talk ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Deleted Scenes And Finding Light In The Dark Of Episode VIII
Spoiler Alert: This story contains plot details of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Rian Johnson and Ram Bergman — the writer-director and producer team behind Looper, The Brothers Bloom and Brick — are exhausted. I meet them at the end of the London stop on their world press tour for their latest, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, after they’ve spent a week on the road talking up the picture. But this is manna for them, because it’s the first time since Johnson was announced as the…
See full article at Deadline Movie News »

Rian Johnson: A Star Wars Story

By Salim Garami

What's good?

To many, this weekend is the imminent release of "oh my god, the new Star Wars movie". To me... it's also the imminent release of "the new Star Wars movie", I can't even pretend that's not the way I think of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. I just also find it very exciting to look at as the new Rian Johnson movie, a filmmaker I've followed since the start and am incredibly happy to find in his successful and stable position. This especially considering that he's one of the few filmmakers who never established a production company of his own (Endgame Entertainment, who produced The Brothers Bloom and Looper, is the only company to produce more than one of his films). 

So if you'll join me, today I'd like to look back on his journey from the lo-fi shoe-string ingenuity that inhabited the beginnings of
See full article at FilmExperience »

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Originally Planned For A “Ridiculous Amount Of Sets”

While Rian Johnson is likely rightly celebrating the outpouring of praise for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,“ let’s not forget what a monumental leap he took. Before landing in a galaxy far, far away the director largely made small, more hand-crafted films like “Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom,” and “Looper.” The latter saw him expand his palette a bit, but even for a sci-fi picture, it was fairly down ‘n dirty.

Continue reading ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Originally Planned For A “Ridiculous Amount Of Sets” at The Playlist.
See full article at The Playlist »

Film Review: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Turns Up the Volume

Chicago – Everything that could be thrown into the Stars Wars legend – and the official story – is present in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” With three concurrent stories converging into an amped-up climax, all manner of Star Wars-mania and fan satisfaction can be realized in Episode 8.

Rating: 3.5/5.0

Taking over for Episode 7 director J.J. Abrams is Rian Johnson (“Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom”), a more independent and offbeat helmsman. He obviously wanted to establish his own heartbeat in the series and did it by the balancing act of the complex stories (he also wrote the script), that all erupted over each other to effectively emerge together at the conclusion. It is an epic tale, much like the audacity of a seafaring novel written in the 19th Century, with conflict and emotion that have a bearing on both the older and new characters in the canon. This is not your Daddy’s Star Wars,
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Review: Rian Johnson's 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' is Bold But Off-Balance

Written and directed by filmmaker Rian Johnson (of Brick, The Brothers Bloom, Looper), Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the second entry in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following J.J. Abrams' Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Upon its release in late 2015, The Force Awakens received overwhelmingly positive reviews from critics and praise from fans worldwide for restoring the saga's former glory while injecting it with fresh blood. As beloved as Episode VII was, however, one criticism continued to appear: it was too safe; a rehash of George Lucas' 1977 film. If Abrams' movie was too safe, then Johnson's follow-up may prove too risky. Picking up moments after Episode VII's cliffhanger ending with Rey finally meeting Luke, The Last Jedi begins with the evacuation of D'Qar, home to the Resistance's secret base. After the destruction of their superweapon, Starkiller Base, the First Order attacks the planet, with General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson
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‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Review: Here’s the Most Satisfying Star Wars Movie in Decades

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Review: Here’s the Most Satisfying Star Wars Movie in Decades
When Disney bought the entire Star Wars franchise from Lucasfilm for all the money in the galaxy, the deal forced a reckoning: Over 40 years, George Lucas garnered a massive and rabid fanbase for his singular vision of old-fashioned matinees refashioned for a galaxy far, far away — but it also remained tethered to his whims. (Knock those dopey prequels all you want, but they were the movies Lucas wanted to make.)

Millions of fans clamored for satisfaction after the first trilogy, but what they faced was an unwieldy assemblage of Star Wars media in a constant state of identity crisis. There was Jar Jar Binks; there was Hayden Christensen as a young Darth Vader; there were plans to re-release “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith” in 3D.

The first post-acquisition movie, J.J. Abrams'” The Force Awakens,” took some stabs at creating a more vital and singular vision,
See full article at Indiewire »

Rian Johnson Writing and Directing a New ‘Star Wars’ Trilogy

  • Indiewire
Rian Johnson Writing and Directing a New ‘Star Wars’ Trilogy
That galaxy far, far away keeps getting bigger. Rian Johnson, the writer/director of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” will resume his duties with an all-new trilogy set in the “Star Wars” world but featuring entirely new characters and an original story. Bob Iger, the head of Disney, just announced the news.

Read More:Porgs 101: Everything You Need to Know About the Adorable ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Creatures

Johnson’s feat is especially impressive, given how many other directors have been replaced before even completing one “Star Wars” film: Josh Trank, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, and Colin Trevorrow have all been dropped from upcoming movies. He previously directed “Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom,” and “Looper.”

Read More:‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Trailer: Spoilers Revealed in Epic New Look at Rian Johnson’s Sequel

“The Last Jedi” picks up where “The Force Awakens” left off, with Daisy Ridley, John Boyega,
See full article at Indiewire »

Hanson at 25: The Brothers Dish on Greatest Hits Album, Track by Track - and Why They'll Always Be Proud of 'MMMBop'

Hanson at 25: The Brothers Dish on Greatest Hits Album, Track by Track - and Why They'll Always Be Proud of 'MMMBop'
They’ve come a long way from “MMMBop” — and “MMMBop” wasn’t even close to their genesis.

In truth, Isaac, Taylor and Zac Hanson formed their band in 1992, when youngest member Zac (who is actually the third born of seven children) was only 6 years old. So while 2017 may mark 20 years of loyalty even for the most dedicated of Fansons — who first became acquainted with the towheaded brothers over the summer of 1997 during the time of their breakout album Middle of Nowhere and subsequent sold-out arena concerts, Saturday Night Live appearance, Christmas album and adorable Eggo commercial — for Hanson, it’s
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