DreamWorks Animation, the company behind successful movie franchises like “Madagascar” and “Shrek,” said it had completed a deal to pump its films and television specials through Netflix, replacing a less lucrative pact with HBO.
The Netflix accord, which analysts estimate is worth $30 million per picture to DreamWorks over an unspecified period of years, is billed by the companies as the first time a major Hollywood supplier has chosen Web streaming over pay television.
While Gerard Butler has played characters based on real people before, “I have never before played someone that not only is still alive, but whose life touched me so deeply, having such a deep emotional impact on me,” the actor said.
“I know it sounds a bit pretentious, but truly, playing Sam Childers has changed my life, and how I think about myself as an actor.”
During a recent Chicago visit, the Scottish native sat down with the Sun-Times to talk about “Machine Gun Preacher” (opening Friday), based on the life of Childers, once a troubled and violent drug addict and criminal who found religion, turned his life around and became an international humanitarian.
The title refers to Childers’ evolution into a gun-toting, self-taught man of God, who often had to do battle in Africa to save the lives of children fleeing the horrors of war.
Not long ago, we heard that Terrence Malick has a new film brewing with Christian Bale. Almost nothing else was known about the project — no real story, no timeline, no other cast details. Over the weekend, we got what seems to be the best possible confirmation of this project as Malick and Bale were spotted all over the Austin City Limits music fest. A camera crew was following the two and actress Haley Bennett,recently said to be the frontrunner for the female lead. Malick was also photographed with camera in hand.
Over the course of his 18 years in show biz, having cracked into popular culture as a pre-teen Mickey Mouse Club star and blossoming into A-list Hollywood’s most idiosyncratic yet compulsively watchable young Serious Actor, Ryan Gosling has portrayed an eclectic grab bag of disturbed young men and winsome doofuses, violent sociopaths and studly lotharios, the overwhelming majority of his roles in low budget indie features.
Despite breakout parts in mainstream hits such as 2004’s The Notebook or this year’s ensemble comedyCrazy, Stupid Love, Gosling has come to stand as something like the anti-Shia LaBeouf – a guy with a seeming allergy to big budget fare, the strict avoidance of superhero movies and a proven ability to deliver compelling performances in exquisite little films such as the tortured romantic breakdown Blue Valentine and the sex doll dramedy Lars and the Real Girl.
The golden age of Hollywood may have passed, but these are boom times for great character actors. On the big screen and the small, in movies and in television, beautiful sad sacks like Paul Giamatti, Bryan Cranston and Steve Buscemi are running away with some of the best roles and lines going, and Viola Davis is suddenly on the verge of stardom.
Reality TV and the tabloids can have the plastic people with the corrugated stomachs and corrected cheekbones. This season will have its share of muscular action heroes and sexy vampires and suffering spouses, but the richness of the new movies is more likely to lie in the ragged human details. We’ll take the sagging jaw line, the suggestion of mortality, the kinds of faces and physiques we recognize from the shopping mall, the office, maybe even the mirror.
Character actors endow the make-believe of movies with personality. They’re the performers nibbling in the corners of the screen, like the ticking bomb played by Stephen Root in "Office Space,” a basement-cubicle casualty in thick glasses, lost in a miasma of humiliation. Their faces, bodies and performances linger in your memory even if you can’t quite recall their names.
"Abduction" -- the film that marks Taylor Lautner's official bid to become an action star -- doesn't hit theaters until next Friday, Sept. 23. But director John Singleton says that no matter how the movie fares at the box office in the coming weeks, a sequel to the action flick is already a done deal.
When asked if there would be another installment of "Abduction," Singleton replied enthusiastically: "Definitely."
"We've been talking about it while we're making the movie. Of course, I'm gonna direct it," he grinned, speaking from the premiere of the film in Hollywood Thursday night. (You can check out a video interview with Singleton from the event below.)
And if the movie tanks at the multiplex? "I don't think we have to worry about that," he said. "It's happening."
“I’m an old man. I’m 70.”
There’s an element of rueful acceptance in Nick Nolte’s gravel-voiced admission. But he obviously feels he had to bring up this age thing to explain his conflicted response to his latest film, Warrior, in which he plays the estranged father of two grown sons who are involved in the bone-crunching world of mixed martial arts.
When he initially read filmmaker Gavin O’Connor’s screenplay, he was attracted by the opportunity, once again, to play a compromised human being, a genre in which he excels. But he was repelled by the violence.
“I called Gavin and said, ‘Jeez, do we really have to go through this?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, we do.’ ”
Prominent Jewish leaders are beginning to speak out against Mel Gibson and Warner Bros. over their planned movie based on the life of religious icon Judah Maccabee.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti Defamation League, who criticized Gibson’s controversial 2004 film The Passion of the Christ, issued a statement to The Hollywood Reporter in response to the news.
“Judah Maccabee deserves better. He is a hero of the Jewish people and a universal hero in the struggle for religious liberty. It would be a travesty to have his story told by one who has no respect and sensitivity for other people’s religious views,” Foxman tells THR of the project, which is being co-developed by Basic Instinct writer Joe Eszterhas.
In early 2010, David Cronenberg's dream of filming A Dangerous Method -- the real-life story of Sabina Spielrein, Carl Jung's lover, Sigmund Freud's follower and both men's patient -- came crashing to a halt.
The Canadian director learned by e-mail that Christoph Waltz was pulling out of playing Freud to shoot the much-bigger-budgeted Water for Elephants, even though Waltz had urged Cronenberg to cast him.
It was the second time a star had exited the movie (Christian Bale withdrew as Jung a year earlier), the kind of upheaval that would give most directors palpitations. But not Cronenberg.
"Waltz waltzed, and Bale bailed," he quips.
There's a new king atop Sony's line of ES projectors: the VPL-VW1000ES. Presented at CEDIA this afternoon, it bypasses all the beamers Sony's delivered for home use so far -- including the recent VPL-HW30AES and VPL-VW95ES models -- by featuring a stunning 4K resolution, four times that of standard HD projectors based on an all new SXRD panel. Scheduled to go on sale this December it also claims a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and 2,000 ANSI lumens of brightness that allows it to project on screens of sizes up to 200-inches. Whether or not you can scrape together the ducats for a 4K projector this Christmas, there are other options for home theater nuts in the form of two new receivers for the ES line that will also be available. The STR-DA5700ES and STR-DA3700ES will ship in November but more than their hardware specs, they feature a new onscreen UI that's supposed to be easier to use. The only device at the presentation with a pricetag was the HMZ-T1 3D viewer we tried out at IFA last week, which has been announced for the US in November with a price "around" $799. Expect more in person pics in a moment, meanwhile the press releases after the break have all the information currently available.
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