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A United Kingdom movie review: a love that changed the world

MaryAnn’s quick take… Insistent chemistry between David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike fuels a true story of passionate romance with an urgent message about love as radical and political. I’m “biast” (pro): love the cast; desperate for stories about women

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

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

Here is a story to drive bigots crazy. And it’s even true.

In 1947, Seretse Khama was a young man from the British protectorate of Bechuanaland in southern Africa studying in London when he met Ruth Williams, a young English woman. They fell in love, and that upset all sorts of people for all sorts of reasons. He was black, and she was white, and both their families took issue with their romance for the usual stupid irrational reasons. But the governments of both countries also freaked out. Seretse was heir to the throne of Bechuanaland,
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Netflix Picks Up ‘Downfall’ Director Oliver Hirschbiegel’s Six-Part Series ‘The Same Sky’

While Oliver Hirschbiegel is still accurately referred to as the director of the meme-spawning “Downfall,” to be quite blunt, he hasn’t quite made anything worthy of similar note in the dozen years that have passed since the release of that film. His attempt to go Hollywood badly backfired with the trouble-plagued “The Invasion,” his pretty decent low key thriller “Five Minutes Of Heaven” went largely ignored, while the less said about the atrocious “Diana,” the better.

Continue reading Netflix Picks Up ‘Downfall’ Director Oliver Hirschbiegel’s Six-Part Series ‘The Same Sky’ at The Playlist.
See full article at The Playlist »

The First Trailer For A United Kingdom Debuts

The British director Amma Asante achieved great acclaim with her 2013 film Belle – which greatly boosted the career of excellent lead actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw. Now, Asante is about to deliver her third feature film, and its cast need no such boost – featuring, as it does, high profile award nominees David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike. The trailer for A United Kingdom showcases powerful performances from these two leads, as well as beautiful direction from the accomplished filmmaker at the helm.

The story is a historical drama that centres around African Prince Seretse Khama (David Oyelowo), who is summoned back to Botswana from London to lead his nation. During his time in London, however, he has met and fallen in love with Ruth Williams (Rosamund Pike) – and proposes marriage before he departs. As he returns to Botswana with his wife, the newlyweds find that their union stirs fierce international controversy.

“London, 1947. Jazz lovers Seretse Khama (Oyelowo,
See full article at We Got This Covered »

Giveaway: Win the Helen Mirren-Led ‘Eye on the Sky’ on Blu-ray

Arriving on Blu-ray next week is Gavin Hood‘s drone thriller Eye in the Sky starring Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, and Alan Rickman. We’ve teamed with Universal Home Entertainment to give away two Blu-rays of the film. See how to enter below and all entries must be received by 11:59 Pm Est on Sunday, June 26th.

To enter, do the first two steps and then each additional one counts as another entry into the contest.

1. Like The Film Stage on Facebook

2. Follow The Film Stage on Twitter

Follow @TheFilmStage

3. Comment in the box on Facebook with your favorite Helen Mirren film.

4. Retweet the following tweet:

We're giving away #EyeintheSky on Blu-ray. Rt this & follow us to enter. See more details:

— The Film Stage (@TheFilmStage) June 22, 2016

We will select the winners at random and notify via Facebook or Twitter message. One entry per household.
See full article at The Film Stage »

Eye in the Sky Lands at Home on June 14

  • Comicmix
The moral implications of modern warfare are confronted in Bleecker Street’s powerful drama, Eye in the Sky, coming to Digital HD on June 14, 2016 and Blu-ray™, DVD and On Demand on June 28, 2016, from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Tackling an ethical dilemma in a thought-provoking suspenseful story, the gritty film stars Academy Award® Winner, Helen Mirren (Trumbo, The Queen), Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad, Need for Speed), Academy Award® Nominee Barkhad Abdi (Captain Philips), Iain Glen (Game of Thrones, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider) and the late Alan Rickman (Die Hard, Harry Potter) in his final on-screen performance. Eye in the Sky “holds us in a vise and keeps squeezing” according to Peter Travers of Rolling Stone. Directed by Academy Award® Winner Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, Ender’s Game) and written by Guy Hibbert (Complicit, Five Minutes of Heaven), Eye in the Sky follows Colonel Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren), a UK-based military officer in
See full article at Comicmix »

Eye in the Sky movie review: in the eyes of 21st-century warriors

As entertaining on an escapist level as it is irrefutably engaging on a level that is essential for citizens who are players in our political environment. I’m “biast” (pro): love the cast

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

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

This is warfare today. It’s a colonel in a bunker in outer London (surrounded by computers) and a general in an office building in Whitehall (surrounded by politicians) and a drone pilot in Las Vegas (flying a robot armed with missiles and also, more importantly, with cameras, from thousands of miles away) and a facial-recognition technician at a workstation in Pearl Harbor and an agent of the Kenyan military on the ground in Nairobi collaborating in an operation to capture most-wanted terrorists in a civilian suburban neighborhood in a country that neither the Us nor the UK is at war with.
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

Wednesday’s best TV: One Child; The Great Sport Relief Bake Off; Midsomer Murders

  • The Guardian - TV News
An ambitious and effective east-meets-west thriller; celebrities’ soggy bottoms; and the horse-assisted murder of a squire’s son

Debut of an ambitious miniseries by Guy Hibbert, best known for writing the TV films Five Minutes of Heaven and Omagh. Mei (Katie Leung) is a young Chinese-born woman who has been raised by adoptive parents in Britain. The first she hears from her birth family in Guangzhou is a request to come “home” to help the brother she has never met, who is facing execution for a crime he didn’t commit. It’s both an effective thriller, and a wider parable of the mutual bewilderment that often characterises relations between east and west. Andrew Mueller

Continue reading...
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Berlin: Pathe Intl. Marks Big Sales for ‘United,’ ‘Cezanne’ and ‘Eternity’ (Exclusive)

Berlin: Pathe Intl. Marks Big Sales for ‘United,’ ‘Cezanne’ and ‘Eternity’ (Exclusive)
Pathe Intl. is winding up a bullish Efm market with a diverse slate of French and English-language pics, headlined by Rosamund Pike starrer “A United Kingdom,” Daniele Thompson’s “Cezanne et moi” and Tran Anh Hung’s “Eternity.”

Based on true events, “A United Kingdom” tells the story of Seretse Khama (David Oyelowo), the King of Botswana, who fell in love with London office worker Ruth Williams (Pike, “Gone Girl”) in 1947. Amma Asante directs. Adapted from Susan Williams’ “Colour Bar,” the movie was penned by Guy Hibbert (“Five Minutes of Heaven”).

After showing a promo of “A United Kingdom,” Pathe’s sales team, headed by Muriel Sauzay, sold nearly all key territories, including Germany (Telepool), Italy (Videa), Australia/New Zealand (Transmission), Scandinavia (Mis Label), Portugal (Cinemundo), Greece (Feelgood), Turkey (Bir Film), Middle East (Gulf Film) and Benelux (Paradiso). Deals with Spain and South Korea are still in negotiation.

Pathe will
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Win Rise Of The Footsoldier 2 On Steelbook

Signature Entertainment

Reintroducing loyal fans to the tortured Carlton Leech (Ricci Harnett – The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan, 28 Days Later), we pick up with our hero a shadow of his former self following the murder of three of his closest friends and fellow gang members. Fearing for his own life and self prescribing drugs on top of alcohol, Carlton must find the strength to fight in order to regain his place in the criminal underworld. That is until circumstances conspire to place him at the heart of what might just become his final job.

Rise Of The Footsoldier 2 sees the return of one of the most feared men in home entertainment history. Released in cinemas from 11th December and on demand, Blu-ray and DVD from December 26th courtesy of Signature Entertainment, the film also features legendary actor Steven Berkoff (Rambo, A Clockwork Orange) Luke Mably (28 Days Later,
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

Amma Asante's 'A United Kingdom' begins shoot

  • ScreenDaily
Amma Asante's 'A United Kingdom' begins shoot
Period drama stars David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike.

Principal photography has begun on A United Kingdom, directed by Amma Asante (Belle), and will shoot for seven weeks in Botswana and the UK.

Pathé will distribute the film in the UK and France and will handle sales throughout the rest of the world.

The cast is led by David Oyelowo (Selma) as Seretse Khama with Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl) playing his future wife Ruth Williams.

Other cast include Jack Davenport (Pirates of the Caribbean), Terry Pheto (Mandela), Tom Felton (Harry Potter), Arnold Oceng (Adulthood), Jack Lowden (‘71) and Laura Carmichael (Downton Abbey).

Scripted by Guy Hibbert (Five Minutes of Heaven, Omagh), the film is based on the book Colour Bar by Susan Williams.

Described as an “epic love story”, A United Kingdom is based on true events. In 1947, Seretse Khama, the King of Botswana, fell in love with London office worker Ruth Williams.

Their marriage
See full article at ScreenDaily »

‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Star Jack Davenport Boards Amma Asante’s ‘A United Kingdom’ (Exclusive)

‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Star Jack Davenport Boards Amma Asante’s ‘A United Kingdom’ (Exclusive)
London — Jack Davenport, who played British naval officer James Norrington in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, is in final negotiations to join the cast of inter-racial love-story movie “A United Kingdom,” which will be directed by BAFTA-winning filmmaker Amma Asante, and stars “Selma’s” David Oyelowo and “Gone Girl’s” Rosamund Pike. Shooting on the film starts today in Botswana.

Davenport’s other credits include Matthew Vaughn’s movie “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” “Smash,” the NBC series about a Broadway musical, and PBS medical drama “Breathless.”

A United Kingdom” has also added several other cast members: Tom Felton, who played Draco Malfoy in the “Harry Potter” franchise and also appeared in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” Nicholas Lyndhurst, who was three times BAFTA nominated for comedy “Only Fools and Horses…,” Laura Carmichael, who played Lady Edith Crawley in “Downton Abbey,” and Arnold Oceng, who starred alongside Reese Witherspoon in “The Good Lie.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Toronto Film Review: Helen Mirren in ‘Eye in the Sky’

Toronto Film Review: Helen Mirren in ‘Eye in the Sky’
The messy complexities of drone warfare trigger command decisions, moral crises, collateral damage and cover-your-backside buck passing in “Eye in the Sky,” a rivetingly suspenseful drama that deftly intertwines elements of ticking-clock thriller and tragic farce. Director Gavin Hood (“Tsotsi”) and scripter Guy Hibbert (“Five Minutes of Heaven”) resist giving their material the extra push that might have transformed the movie into a flat-out black comedy. But much like “Dr. Strangelove,” the Stanley Kubrick classic it often recalls, this teasingly hard-to-label war story has more than a fair share of scenes that generate explosive laughter — until the laughter catches in your throat. Appreciative reviews and enthusiastic word of mouth, along with op-ed analyses and cable-news punditry, could significantly boost box office prospects and ancillary-platform potential.

To be sure, Hood and Hibbert aren’t exactly tilling virgin territory here. In the last year alone, drone warfare has served as subject matter for “Good Kill,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Belle director to helm A United Kingdom with David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike

The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that Belle director Amma Asante has signed on to director A United Kingdom, which tells the story of Botswana’s first president Seretse Khama and his 1948 wedding to a white woman, which sparked international outrage.

The site reports that David Oyelowo (Selma) will star as Khama, with Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl) in negotiations to play his wife Ruth Williams. The script has been written by Guy Hibbert (Five Minutes of Heaven).

“Amma and Rosamund are two of the most exciting talents working in film today,” said Oyelowo, will also produce the film. “I’ve worked with both of them before and so my excitement about them joining A United Kingdom stems from a knowledge of just how inspiring they are to work with and how much daring and beauty they will bring to this epic love story.”
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

‘Belle’ director Amma Asante will direct David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike in new project

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Amma Asante (who most recently directed Belle) is set to direct her third feature film A United Kingdom, with David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike in talks to star. The film will depict the true story of one of the members of the royal family of Botswana. Here’s the synopsis:

Prince Seretse Khama of Botswana causes an international stir when he marries a white woman from London in the late 1940s.

The film will be financed by Pathe International, who will also be one of the companies producing the feature. Along with hopefully starring in the film, David Oyelowo will also serve as one of the producers alongside Rick McCallum (producer of the Star Wars prequels) and folks from Pathe International. With Oyelowo and Pike just coming off there acclaimed performances in 2014 (Oyelowo with Selma and Pike with Gone Girl), it will certainly be
See full article at SoundOnSight »

Roger Allam Leads Belfast-Set Political Thriller ‘The Truth Commissioner’

Roger Allam Leads Belfast-Set Political Thriller ‘The Truth Commissioner’
London — Political thriller “The Truth Commissioner” has started to shoot in Belfast and Dublin. Pic stars Roger Allam, whose credits include “The Queen,” “Tamara Drewe” and “The Book Thief.”

The story, which is based on David Park’s novel, starts as the peace treaty is signed in Northern Ireland. The U.K. prime minister sets up a body modeled on South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which is headed by career diplomat Henry Stanfield (Allam). Stanfield soon uncovers some inconvenient truths about those now running the country, which they are not willing to let him reveal.

The cast also includes Sean McGinley (“Michael Collins,” “Braveheart,” “The Wind That Shakes the Barley”), Tom Goodman Hill (“The Imitation Game,” “Mr Selfridge”), Conleth Hill (“Intermission,” “Salmon Fishing in Yemen,” “Game of Thrones”) and Ian McElhinney (“Game of Thrones”). Declan Recks directs.

Pic is produced by BT9 Films for Big Fish Films and Samson Films.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Hitler Assassination Drama ’13 Minutes’ Sells Worldwide, Targets U.S. Buyers

Oliver Hirschbiegel’s “13 Minutes,” about a resistance fighter who tried to assassinate Hitler, has been picked up by several further international distributors after the film’s promo reel was shown at the American Film Market. The pic has also attracted strong interest from U.S. buyers.

Studiocanal previously nabbed all-rights deals on the film for U.K. and Ireland, and now has taken the rights for Australia and New Zealand.

Sales company Beta Cinema also sold the film to Japan (Gaga Communications), France (Sophie Dulac Distribution), Scandinavia (Svensk Filmindustri), Benelux (September Film Rights), Brazil (Mares Filmes), Greece (Feelgood Entertainment), and Colombia (Cine Colombia). Nfp will release the pic in Germany.

Hirschbiegel previously directed Oscar-nominated pic “Downfall,” Liam Neeson starrer “Five Minutes of Heaven,” which won a directing prize at Sundance, and Naomi Watts starrer “Diana.”

“13 Minutes” stars Christian Friedel (“The White Ribbon”), Katharina Schuettler (“Generation War”) and Burghart Klaussner (“The White Ribbon
See full article at Variety - Film News »

First Look: Helen Mirren & Aaron Paul in Drone Drama 'Eye in the Sky'

Over the summer, we learned that Helen Mirren would team with Colin Firth for a military drone drama called Eye in the Sky from Ender's Game director Gavin Hood. Now some photos from the film have surfaced online from Empire showing off Mirren as military intelligence officer Colonel Katherine Powell, remotely commanding a drone operation to locate terrorists in Nairobi, and another photo with Captain Phillips star Barkhad Abdi. Meanwhile, Aaron Paul has also been revealed as American Steve Watts one of the drone pilots in the story who questions his mission when a 9-year old girl enters the kill zone. Look! Here's the first photos from Gavin Hood's Eye in the Sky from Empire and The Wrap: Eye in the Sky is directed by Gavin Hood (Ender's Game, Rendition) and written by Guy Hibbert (Five Minutes of Heaven). An American drone pilot (Aaron Paul) finds himself at a
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'Downfall' Editor Hans Funck Dies at 61

'Downfall' Editor Hans Funck Dies at 61
Hans Funck, the German film editor of such features as the Oscar-nominated Downfall and Sophie Scholl: The Final Days, died suddenly on Wednesday night in Munich. He was 61. One of Germany's most acclaimed editors, Funck was perhaps most closely associated with Downfall director Oliver Hirschbiegel. Photos Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2014 In addition to Downfall and sleeper hit The Experiment, Funck was the editor on all of Hirschbiegel's English-language productions, including The Invasion, starring Nicole Kidman, Five Minutes of Heaven with Liam Neeson and James Nesbitt and, most recently, the Lady Di biopic Diana with Naomi Watts.

read more
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

Helen Mirren & Aaron Paul Are Joining Colin Firth for 'Eye in the Sky'

We've already told you about the new drone thriller Eye in the Sky produced by and starring Colin Firth. The script comes from BAFTA winning writing Guy Hibbert (Five Minutes of Heaven) and follows a London-based female military intelligence officer, who is remotely commanding a top secret drone operation aiming to capture a group of terrorists in Nairobi. Now THR reports the cast is expanding with Aaron Paul ("Breaking Bad") and Helen Mirren taking the roles of the intelligence officer and the drone pilot respectively. However, we're not sure who Firth will end up playing in the film from Gavin Hood. As for the rest of the story, the situation gets complicated when a mission that started with the task to capture terrorists turns into an assassination mission when it's discovered that her targets are getting ready to enact a suicide attack that will kill many innocent civilians. At the same time,
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Director Gavin Hood Boards 'Eye in the Sky' Starring Colin Firth

Director Gavin Hood Boards 'Eye in the Sky' Starring Colin Firth
Director Gavin Hood is attached to the upcoming thriller Eye in the Sky for Entertainment One and star-producer Colin Firth.

The story, written by Guy Hibbert (Five Minutes of Heaven), is set in the world of drone pilots and follows London intelligence officer Colonel Michelle Madden, who is tasked with remotely commanding a mission to capture a group of wanted terrorists at their safe house in Nairobi, Kenya. Their plan changes drastically upon learning that the terrorists are plotting a suicide attack.

Here's what Colin Firth, who is producing alongside his Raindog Films partner Ged Doherty, had to say about the project.

"The use of unmanned aircraft in modern warfare and in the so-called 'War on Terror' poses critical questions for us all. Raindog was launched with the hope of making challenging thoughtful films, and I'm pleased to be a part of an exploration into such a crucial issue."

Entertainment One
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