Saturday, June 30, 2007

Halloween remake, now with more death

From cinemablend, Fans hoping that Rob Zombie’s remake of Halloween will be pretty dang gory got some good news. According to the folks over at, a recent filming spurt has resulted in “a serious boost in violence, gore, and bloodshed” and a new ending. The ending is reportedly also very blood and gore filled, meaning that this isn’t the Michael Myers film where everyone puts down the knives and just gets along. Details are not plentiful from Bloody-Disgusting about what exactly has changed in the ending or been included in the more violent scenes recently shot, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out. People get sliced up with knives or other sharp objects and there will likely be some screaming involved.

Six new death scenes were filmed in the span of one week. Let’s hope they picked Sunday to rest, since they are already gonna be in dutch with the Lord for all the murder stuff. Zombie’s Halloween is nearing completion. It has to be, since it is supposed to be out on August 31st and we’re about to begin July. Since fans describe most of this franchise’s sequels as sucky or worse, there is a lot of interest in this reboot of the classic horror character.

Read our preview of this movie.

Joel Siegel dies

From cinemablend, It’s been a tough year for America’s film critics. Roger Ebert continues to battle the debilitating mouth cancer which has kept him off the television and in the past month, we’ve lost two prominent online voices in film at tragically young ages . Now Joel Siegel is gone. ABC reports he died Friday at the too young age of 63 after a battle with colon cancer. Apparently this is something he's been battling for some time, and in the process had become an outspoken advocate for the disease. Still, for many (and for me) his passing comes as something of a shock. If Ebert is America’s most recognized film critic, then Joel Siegel was almost certainly number two. The mustachioed film critic has been a staple for decades, and made his home as the critic of record on “Good Morning America” for many years, in addition to his other work in various forms of print and television syndication. Joel was a throwback to a different time in film criticism, the kind of critic who you could always rely on to go right for the witty pun. Siegel loved to be funny, and seemed to tackle giving out bad reviews with real excitement and enthusiasm.

I don’t mean that as an indictment as a man, it was simply his trademark and he was damned good at it. More recently he became semi-infamous to the geek crowd after an incident in which he walked out of Kevin Smith’s Clerks sequel. The back and forth bickering between them seems somehow much less important now when looked at as a mere moment in Joel Siegel’s long and successful career. Whatever you think of Joel and whatever he was as a film critic, the guy was a fixture in American film criticism and it’s hard to imagine people sitting around talking movies without Joel Siegel there to interject some sort of wacky witticism. Our thoughts go out to his family and his friends, Joel will be missed.

Indy 4 begins shooting

From darkhorizons, First pictures of the cast in action on the set of Indiana Jones!

Shia LaBeouf worked his perfect pompadour and leather jacket while riding on a motorcycle with co-star Harrison Ford on Friday. Both stars were attached to dangling steel cables.

The Disturbia star filmed a scene on the New Haven, Connecticut set of his new movie — the fourth installment of the Indiana Jones adventures.
No wonder why he’s been looking a little bit greasy with his hair slicked back!

Friday, June 29, 2007

Garage Sale

Just a few more scattered images I've collected in my computer at work. You are hereby invited to groove on them.

'Transformers': From toy story to serious art?

By Anthony Breznican, USA TODAY

Alas, poor Optimus Prime. The children of the '80s knew you — a robot of infinite strength, and a most excellent big rig, too.

Maybe it's a stretch, but just as Hamlet once contemplated the skull of Yorick, the jester who entertained him as a boy, the twenty- and thirtysomethings of today are getting the pop culture equivalent with Transformers. The action-adventure film, opening nationwide Tuesday, revisits the shape-shifting robots that take the forms of trucks, sports cars, jets and helicopters.

But unlike old Yorick, Optimus Prime is literally returning from the grave (after being killed off in the 1986 animated film) to entertain a new generation, courtesy of the big-budget Hollywood epic, a new line of toys, a Cartoon Network animated series next year, and an array of spinoff comic books and video games.

More than two decades after the Transformers became a phenomenon, what accounts for the endurance of these warring shape-shifting alien robots?

"There is a lot of stuff from that era that nobody cares about, but the key is, you cared about the Transformers on an emotional level," says Tom DeSanto, a producer of the new movie who also helped bring X-Men to the screen.

"It was really well written for a cartoon that came on after kids came home from school."

It's Octopunk's last day!

Yep. It's my last day at Bank of America! In one month I'll be heading down to LA to live with my girlfriend Julie while I try to work myself into the film industry's good graces. I'll be spending that month getting my affairs in order and saying goodbye to the beautiful Bay Area and all my good friends who live there.

Pictured above is a demo of the work activity I excelled at the most.

Rorschach has a website

From cinemablend, Got an email from Roschach tonight. Looks like he’s up in arms again about masks. Just won’t let it go. He says, “new website. movie being made about masks. alan moore - 'watchmen'. more news soon. .?R.” Follow the link and you’ll see a larger version of the image to your right, click the image and you’ll get Rorschach’s email address. Should you email him? It’s a risk. You might end up on his list. You don’t want to be on his list. This may have something to do with the recent murders of masks. Could all be tied together. Or it could be just a cool viral promotion for Warner Brothers’ impending adaptation of Watchmen. It’s more fun to believe the former.


From iwatchstuff, Well, the Rush Hour 3 poster is out, and it's about as underwhelming as I imagine the movie to be. "This summer, they're kicking it in Paris." Yeah, that about sums it up. Same ingredients, same mediocre movie, except this time Brett Ratner gets to waddle his pudgy ass around gay Parie. It's where he belongs, he loves cheese.

Summer Megaparty: Ninja Turtles Pudding Pies Commercial!

From x-entertainment, Oh God, oh God. Somebody give me the textual equivalent of an orgasm, because I need to type it out over and over again.

You've probably read about my fascination with Hostess Ninja Turtles Pies (, those being the disgustingly awesome green pastries filled with vanilla mutagen pudding. If I had to draw up a short list of things that personify X-E, they'd be pretty close to the top. When I wrote the article, all I had to go on were my memories and a few old pie wrappers. Short of finding a Hostess bakery with zero regard for expiration dates, the only missing piece of the puzzle finally landed in my lap tonight.

Yes, finally, I have the Hostess Ninja Turtles Pies commercial. And I'll share it with you in just a minute.

On a conservative estimate, the ad is 16,000 kinds of awesome. The Ninja Turtles were absolutely serious about making these pies a success, evidenced by their willingness to throw away all pride and poise as they don baker hats and rap in unison about vanilla pudding.
"They're lime, they're delicious, you know that's true…because they're filled with MUTAGEN GOO!" Oh God, I am going to sing this jingle to every person and animal I come into contact with forever and ever. They totally should've released it as a single.

Wait, the pies weren't lime, were they? I know the pudding was vanilla. Maybe the crust was lime? I so don't need new questions at this stage…Matt craves closure on the Turtle Pie issue.
Most of the commercial features the Turtles baking the pies and serving them to random kids, but midway through, we finally get some live action money shots of the real deal.

I'm just ridiculously pleased with life in general right now. Click here to watch the commercial, and see if it can't turn your summertime blues green.

Gushing aside, I think I've stumbled onto something else pretty amazing here. During the spot, the Turtles take special care to serve their desserts to this kid. Take a good, long look at him. He seemed familiar, and sure enough, I'm like 84.7% certain that that's the very same kid who accidentally dropped the pre-mutated Ninja Turtles down the sewer drain in the very first episode of the cartoon series. Click here for a shot of that kid.

In the commercial, he looks a few years older…I'd say about three years older, which is the exact amount of years between the first episode and the stupid pie commercial. The Ninja Turtles were clearly rewarding their indirect creator in the only way they knew how: By providing free pies. Am I reaching? NO. I am RIGHT and I deserve prizes.
And by prizes I mean pieses.

UPDATE: They're not saying "they're lime, they're delicious" in the commercial. They're saying "they're mondo delicious." I spent six weeks trying to find Mondo Gecko in the sixth grade; you'd think "mondo" would've at least entered my permanent lexicon for it.

Best license plate ever

From geekology, I don't know if it's the absolute best license plate ever but it's definitely in the top ten. As is my license plate, which is actually just a puppy I stapled to my car.

Iron Man posters debut; armor up?

Tim allen to ruin another movie

From cinemablend, Tim Allen is the worst successful comedian of all time. ‘Home Improvement’ sucked more ass than Tom Sizemore in need of a coke fix, and the Santa Clause trifecta are three of the most unwatchable pieces of reindeer shit ever to get big studio releases. If it wasn’t for Galaxy Quest and the two Toy Stories, I probably would have Chris Benoited him a long time ago.

Unfortunately, a percentage of Americans (the emotionally crippled) do love him, and he, somehow, continues to get work. According to Cinematical, the low-brow loser will join hottie Elisha Cuthbert in the upcoming family comedy The Six Wives Of Henry LeFay.

So far, no details have been made public about the plot; however, based on the target demographic, I’m going to assume that it’s roughly an hour of polygamist orgies and fifteen to twenty minutes of Tim Allen grunt noises. That’s just good comedy. Sadly, this gem probably won’t be making its way into your multiplex for another year or so. The rest of the cast is still yet to sign on, and its unclear whether a script has even been written. Just back in the next few months, and we will keep you abreast on all of the fascinating details.

Bionic Woman hates deaf people

From syfyportal Recasting roles after a pilot might be common practice (see the recent changes for the CBS series "Moonlight"), but a newly reported casting change from NBC's new "Bionic Woman" might be inviting a little bit of controversy.

Mae Whitman apparently is out as Jamie Sommers' deaf sister Becca to be replaced with a character yet to be named, reported TV Guide's Michael Ausiello. While it's not clear who will be the new actress portraying Becca, one thing is clear: She will not be deaf.

"The decision was purely creatively driven," an NBC spokesperson told Ausiello. "It is very common to change storylines, characters, actors after the initial pilot is shot."

"Bionic Woman" would have been just the second genre series after "Jericho" on CBS to feature a deaf character, a group that some say is sorely under-represented in television today.

Someone in NBC's hierarchy apparently asked that the character's hearing be restored, continuing a network streak started more than 40 years ago when NBC asked Gene Roddenberry to get rid of that "satanic Martian" he had with the pointed ears.

"Bionic Woman," which stars Michelle Ryan, premieres this fall on NBC.

Octopunk's bedroom, er, I mean Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium

From CHUD, Judging from the trailer for Zach Helm's Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium, it's abundantly clear that we share a deep, abiding adoration for Pee Wee's Big Adventure. That said, we express our affection in very different ways: I settle for simply watching the movie, while he mugs Walden Media for an undisclosed chunk of change in order to rip off the film's aesthetic. Think I'm being harsh? Watch the below trailer. It's one thing to have the adorable Natalie Portman sweetly whispering "Good Morning" to the toy shop as she opens for business, but quite another to incorporate Danny Elfman's "Breakfast Machine" cue at the precise moment you're thinking, "Gee, the only way this trailer could remind me more of Pee Wee's Big Adventure is if they suddenly cut in the actual music from Pee Wee's Big Adventure!"

Hopefully, this is just Fox's marketing department just phoning in a trailer for a movie they don't understand. It happens. I like the talent involved (Portman, Dustin Hoffman and Jason Bateman) and found Stranger Than Fiction mildly diverting for about an hour or so. This might be something. It also might be as pleasant as dysentery (though I'm sure dysentary has its fans, too).

Germans Deny Hatred of Scientology, Seem Less Cool

From iwatchstuff, "Despite previous reports that Germany had barred Valkyrie from shooting at government locations because of star Tom Cruise's outspoken beliefs in alien ghosts, German officials are now saying shooting was not banned at all. One of the locations houses part of the German defense ministry, and it was that, not thetans, that kept Valkyrie from getting permits.

'If anything, it would be the lights and cables and camera teams that could disrupt work at the Defense Ministry, [German official]Kuehnau said, adding that if an arrangement is found where filming does not interfere with government business, a filming permit should be no problem.'

Kuehnau added, "And anozza sing, zat whole 'holocaust' story vas vay, vay owerblown."

Valkyrie, the story of Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, a national hero who was executed in 1944 for attempting to assassinate Adolf Hitler, was written by Christopher McQuarrie and Nathan Alexander and will be directed by Bryan Singer. Bryan Singer, Chris McQuarrie, and Nazis? Shit, I'll see that even if mormons are in it.

Willem Dafoe Back to Vampirism

From iwatchstuff, Speaking in a recent interview, Ethan Hawke, already connected to the futuristic vampire picture Daybreakers, revealed that he will be dueling fellow vampire Willem Dafoe in the film, and also that he's growing his hair out for the part. Hawke, his blonde locks showing signs of progression, explained that the plot is set in a distant future overrun by vampires, at least one of whom has long hair. Brushing his lengthening bangs from his forehead, the actor went on to say that the vampires have exhausted their resources for blood, leaving them fighting for the final humans.

If you missed the heavy-handed political undertones, the long-tressed actor elaborated, "It's a big analogy about what's going on now," before adding, "It's really dark and weird and everybody's sucking each other's blood," proving that he is actually an 8th grade girl.

Benicio is a natural for the part

From bloodydisgusting, Star Benicio Del Toro looks a little roughed and shaggy in a paparazzi pic of him down in Beverly Hills, CA. According to TMZ he's getting all hairy for his role as Larry Talbot in Universal Pictures remake of The Wolfman, which will be helmed by the brilliant Mark Romanek. Like the 1941 original that starred Lon Chaney Jr., new pic will be set in Victorian England. Del Toro will play a man who returns from America to his ancestral homeland, gets bitten by a werewolf and begins a hairy moonlight existence. Read on for a look.

Can you match the young Spice Girl to Old Spice Girl?

From thesuperficial, The Spice Girls officially announced today that all five original members will reunite and perform for 11 concerts around the world in December and January. The concerts will be the first time they've performed together since breaking up in 2001, and they're expected to make about $20 million each. Which is nice, because I think most of them were getting sick of eating cat food and sleeping in dumpsters. Besides Posh, have any of them done anything except become old and unemployed? If this thing falls through I just hope Wal-Mart lets them have their jobs back.

Brittany Murphy might be insane

From the superficial, A source who used to work for Brittany Murphy says Brittany is convinced "a high-powered Hollywood player" is stalking her. Back in April, her then-boyfriend Simon Monjack disappeared for 10 days and Brittany claimed he had been kidnapped by agents of her stalker. However, the kidnapping exactly coincides with the dates that Monjack, a British citizen, was reportedly jailed by U.S. immigration for overstaying his visa.

"When he came back, he had head injuries," says the former insider. "He was pale and sometimes had trouble standing." Not only that, but the former staffer also claims Murphy said she was unable to pay him because the money had been used for ransom ... Monjack, a screenwriter, is not short of enemies. Several anonymous sources have posted unflattering stories on the Internet about his past relationships. On June 13, a man identifying himself as Arturo Globenfeldt posted a message on Monjack's page claiming he owes him $16 million in film investment money.

So the guy gets kicked out of the country for 10 days and then tells Brittany Murphy he was kidnapped and she believes him. Wow. You could probably get her to believe the moon was made out of cheese if you wanted to. You wouldn't even have to really try, you could just mention it offhandedly and she'd be like, "Reeeeaaaally?!"

Captivity leaked early

From dark horizons, Maybe one delay was too many it seems for the controversial horror flick "Captivity". Pushed back from May to June 22nd, and then again to July 13th - the Elisha Cuthbert-led fright flick has become the fourth film this month to see itself leak onto the Internet's file torrenting systems - just over two weeks before its US theatrical release.

In recent weeks a DVD workprint of Eli Roth's "Hostel: Part II" and a DVD screener of Michael Moore's "Sicko" leaked online. A few days ago a 'CAM' release - films that have been captured by someone taking a camcorder into a movie theatre and filming the movie - popped up for Disney & Pixar's next flick "Ratatouille" which opens tomorrow. Yesterday however saw a 'CAM' release of "Captivity" hit the networking sites. Dark and blurry to be on the verge of near unwatchable for all but the most desperate - judging from example screen captures that have popped up online - it makes one wonder how the studios will react to this. When "Hostel: Part II" opened soft to $8.2 million, director Eli Roth screamed bloody murder about the leak (considering what got leaked he has every right), but then blamed the failed opening entirely on the piracy rather than more likely factors of bad scheduling, studio co-production politics and poor word-of-mouth and critical reviews. Michael Moore on the other hand was indifferent about the leak of his film, and its stellar box-office performance in limited release last weekend shows that it's unlikely to have much of an impact. Indeed with both it and "Ratatouille" hitting wide this week, it'll be interesting to see how they perform and what potential failure might be ascribed to piracy.The leak of "Captivity" isn't a huge surprise though considering that the film has opened in international territories already, most notably the UK. Danny Boyle's sci-fi thriller "Sunshine", which also opened in a similar international-first pattern, has already seen a DVD quality available on torrenting sites for months now despite the film not opening States-side til mid-July.

Order of Phoenix reviewed

From darkhorizons, For those of us who obey press embargoes, it's annoying stuff like this that really gets one's goat.

The Times Online has posted up the first online review of the upcoming fifth "Harry Potter" film, and the verdict is mixed - with a 3/5 score.It calls 'Phoenix' a "solid, occasionally spectacular set-piece that struggles unsuccessfully to give us thrills and fun we have not already had in previous instalments" and "overall there is a shortage of those joyful little glimpses of the wizarding world’s furniture that punctuated and perked up the previous films".

The main problem though seems to be the same as for those who had difficulty with the last film - namely, the lack of a true climax that will only come with the last book. Critic Leo Lewis says "the true denouement of the cycle is now two movies distant...

As the waiting for the final book grows unbearable, there are moments when this otherwise enjoyable film, though nicely made and through no fault of its own, feels like a chore to be got through before the main course".

Now for my soapbox.

I'm a pretty critical reviewer generally, not one to praise lightly. I saw the film last week in London and whilst I can't publish my review until the week of release, I can say that they took what I consider arguably the worst book in the series and turned it into arguably the best (well second best, 'Azkaban' will always hold a special place) film in the franchise so far - and easily the best of the Summer blockbusters this season so far. I can't go into anymore detail I'm sorry, but expect a more in-depth critical analysis in a little over a week from now.

I'd push the button

From AICN, Now, I've read the script for Richard Kelly's THE BOX and it's strong. Really strong. If you're not familiar with the project, it's based on a Richard Matheson scripted episode of THE TWILIGHT ZONE about a box concealing a button [JPX, "What's in the Box", 1964, season 5, episode 24). It is given to a couple that is told they will be paid life-changing money if they press the button, but with the knowledge that if the button is pressed then someone will die. The presser of the button will not know the person killed, but by pressing the button they are in fact killing someone.

Cameron Diaz has just joined the project, playing the wife of the couple given the box.
Kelly originally wrote it for Eli Roth to direct, but then Roth got caught up with HOSTEL 2 and CELL and left it for Kelly to direct once SOUTHLAND TALES was finally finished.

We're starting to see some press now talking about how audiences don't want R-rated horror anymore [JPX, wait, what?] because 1408 did well and HOSTEL 2 didn't and I'd like to address this now. In the trade story announcing Diaz, they talk about how Kelly is aiming for a PG-13...

Having read the script, it's pretty obvious that a PG-13 is the way to go. This story isn't dependent on gore or sex or language. I don't believe for a second that Kelly is afraid of the R, but I do think he sees that this story can be told PG-13 without losing any of the suspense he wants.

I think the rating has nothing or almost nothing to do with the recent performance of horror. I liked HOSTEL 2 and I liked 1408, but we haven't seen a horror movie like 1408 in a long while whereas the type of horror HOSTEL 2 is has been dominant in the genre for the last few years.
I don't think the horror audience wants tame horror, I think they want a better variety. I don't think I've ever met a horror fan that said, "Man... I'm tired of R-rated horror movies. Why can't we get more PG-13 stuff?"

All the press will just go away whenever the next R-rated horror movie comes out and sweeps up. Every time something fails it's always the death of whatever type of film that was and whenever something succeeds, it's always the beginning of a new trend. That's just how things are reported. Maybe you'll disagree, but I don't believe the audience only wants PG-13 horror.
But like I said above about Richard Kelly's script, I think he's making the movie he wants, a movie that can fit in a PG-13 rating, not paring it down because he's afraid of a harsher rating. On the whole, THE BOX is Kelly's most mainstream script. It still has his quirks, of course. His voice is clearly there, but I think it has a wider appeal than his previous work. Now if he can just get the final cut of SOUTHLAND TALES to come out...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Lucas lightens up

From TVsquad, It hasn't even been a week since Family Guy wrapped for the season, but already there's buzz about next season's premiere. The cartoon has received George Lucas' blessing to spoof Star Wars. The episode will be an hour-long and use the Family Guy characters to recreate Star Wars. So, Peter Griffin will be Han Solo, Lois will be Leia, Stewie will be Darth Vader, Brian will be Chewbacca, Chris will be Luke. Etc, etc.

This is interesting because we're already going to see a Star Wars spoof from Robot Chicken next month, which not only has Lucas' blessing but also his cooperation. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane often voices characters on Robot Chicken and Seth Green produces Robot Chicken but also voices 'Chris' on Family Guy. Not sure if this all came together by coincidence or what.MacFarlane will premiere some of the Family Guy/Star Wars spoof at this weekend's Star Wars convention in LA.

Horrorthon to be sued next?

From cinemablend, Corporate America has taken yet another step towards stretching copyright protection laws beyond all reason. First they went after people hosting stolen content. Then they went after little old ladies downloading easy listening music in their bedroom. Now they’re going after people who aren’t hosting illegal content and aren’t downloading copyrighted material… they’re just talking about it.

The Hollywood Reporter says, “Hollywood studios are suing a pair of dot-coms that provide links to scores of file-sharing Web sites, extending a campaign targeting the unauthorized dissemination of copyright material.”

I wanted to quote that, so you wouldn’t miss the subtle nuance of godforsaken evil in it. If you fell out of your chair halfway through it, feel free to go back and read it again. I’ll be down in the next paragraph. What we have here is a pair sites, specifically YouTVPC and, which don’t actually have any illegal content on them. What they do, is tell people about other sites that do contain copyrighted, illegal content. So if I ran a story here which said has Brokeback Mountain available for download, I’d pretty much be doing the same thing. I’m not distributing copyrighted material, I don’t have any copyrighted material, I’m just telling you about this other guy who does have some. Essentially, they want it to be illegal for you to talk about illegal downloaders. Not just to download yourself, but to even talk about other people doing it.

The MPAA is couching this as them pursuing people who are “profiting from the theft of other people's creative works,” and those are some nice buzz words except these people haven’t stolen anything. At worst they’re profiting off the people who have profited off the theft of other people’s creative work. They’re like the pirate’s step-cousin twice-removed. While we’re at it, let’s go after newspapers who profit off the crimes committed by thieves, since they make their money by reporting on break-ins. Or the next time John Stossil does an expose on the piracy problem, let’s toss him in prison. After all, he’s earning his paycheck by telling you about pirates.

How long until the MPAA goes after Google for including file sharing sites in their search engines? Oh wait, never, because they’re rich. Of course the standard, do nothinger response to this will be that these are bad people who are encouraging people to do bad things, and if the courts set a legal precedent like this the government wouldn’t ever really apply it to anything we care about. They’ll only apply it to people with bad intentions. And they’re right, in that these are bad people. I don’t care about PeekVid, they’re a bunch of assholes who encourage people to watch movies on their computers instead of watching them on a 40ft screen the way they ought to see them. They’re scum, but free speech protects lowlife bastards with bad intentions as much as it protects you and me. It has to work that way, or it ceases to be free speech. Free speech doesn’t differentiate between the man who means well and the guy who works for the anti-Christ. It’s simply free speech. You can say what you want. Talking about crimes is not the same thing as committing them, no matter what your reason for talking about them. I’ve just about had it with copyright laws. At some point they were a good idea (and probably still are). But they’ve been taken much too far. They don’t protect artists and copyright holders anymore. Most of those people can’t afford the teams of lawyers necessary to enforce their copyrights anyway. They exist only to line the fat cat pockets of greedy, money-grubbing corporations who will push and pull and stretch copyright laws until they’ve choked the life out of the internet and everyone on it If the MPAA has to go after anyone, try going after the people who are actually stealing your content, instead of taking the lazy, slimy, socially irresponsible route of going after just about everyone else.

Damnit, why do they get to see it first???

TOKYO (AP) - Japan rolled out the red carpet Thursday for the world premiere of "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," the fifth movie from J.K. Rowling's megahit fantasy series.

Hundreds of young Japanese fans, many wearing witch costumes and holding magic wands, screamed when Daniel Radcliffe appeared as white smoke spewed on the stage.

"Japanese fans are the best!" Radcliffe, dressed in a white suit, said in simple Japanese.

"Order of the Phoenix" was directed by David Yates, a Briton best known for the multilayered TV thrillers "State of Play" and "Sex Traffic."

The film opens as Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is undergoing a gradual takeover by the bureaucratic Ministry of Magic and its emissary, Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher Dolores Umbridge (Imelda Staunton).

A sense of impending doom is heightened by a series of nightmares that link Harry (Radcliffe) ever more closely to the devilish Voldemort, bringing Rowling's saga into even darker territory.
There's also a new love angle: Harry's first kiss with fellow student Cho Chang (Katie Leung).
The Harry Potter books have been translated into 65 languages and sold more than 325 million copies since the first volume, "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone," was published in 1997. (The book was published in the United States with the title "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.")

After this movie, the next Harry-related frenzy will be the publication of the seventh and final book, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," on July 21.

The first Harry Potter movie was released in 2001. Radcliffe and co-stars Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, who play Harry's friends Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley, have been at the center of the Potter storm for almost half their lives.

"It's just absolutely brilliant. He's an icon," said 17-year-old Radcliffe, explaining why he's been playing Harry for such a long time. "He is somebody whose character has gotten his generation of kids into reading. So it's an honor to play him."

All three stars have signed up for the final two Potter films.

"Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," a Warner Bros. Pictures release, opens in the United States on July 11 and in Britain the next day.

It's not what I really, really want; Also, Scary Spice, wicked scary


LONDON (AP) - The Spice Girls wannabe stars again.

Following a calculated publicity buildup, the original Girl Power group of the 1990s announced Thursday that they have agreed to reunite for 11 concerts around the world in December and January.

The shows will be their first concerts since breaking up in 2001, and the first with all five of the original group since Geri "Ginger Spice" Halliwell quit to pursue a solo career in 1998.

The group said shows would be in Los Angeles on Dec. 7; Las Vegas on Dec. 8; New York on Dec. 11; London on Dec. 15; Cologne, Germany, on Dec. 20; Madrid, Spain, on Dec. 23; Beijing on Jan. 10; Hong Kong on Jan. 12; Sydney, Australia, on Jan. 17; Cape Town, South Africa, on Jan. 20; and Buenos Aires, Argentina on Jan. 24.

Halliwell appeared with Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham, Melanie "Sporty Spice" Chisholm, Emma "Baby Spice" Bunton and Melanie "Scary Spice" Brown to pose for photos and announce tour plans.

"We wanted to say thank you to our fans. It just feels very right for us," Chisholm said.

"Obviously it's nostalgic. But equally, if new fans want to come along, that's fantastic," Halliwell said. "I like to think our songs are universal and they are timeless."
The group's first single, "Wannabe," was released in 1996 and was followed by a string of No. 1 hits.

But their last album, "Forever," released in 2000 and without Halliwell, fared poorly.
You could now call them the Spice Mums. Beckham said the tour will be designed to accommodate the band members' seven children. Bunton is now pregnant with her first child.
"Our priority is going to be our families. We want to have fun," said Beckham, who has three sons with her husband, soccer star David Beckham. "That's one of the many reasons for this, for our children to see what we used to do."

Transformers, decent?

From CHUD, Michael Bay's giant fucking robots are here, and they are dead-set on destroying lots of property, so it's fortunate that, in anticipation of the edifice-toppling third-act tilt, they've landed in Los Angeles, where great architecture is as disposable as a socialite's virginity. The only drawback to Bay's final fit of mechanical mayhem - and he is currently without peer when it comes to the staging of this stuff - is that one must endure a distended middle section bafflingly dedicated to a hunt for an antique pair of eyeglasses, which would be kind of like Spielberg pausing the ruthless forward-momentum of Jaws to have Chief Brody and Hooper chase Quint all over Amity for forty minutes just to charter the Orca.

Read rest of review here,

Intense "Eastern Promises" Trailer

From worstpreviews, Here is the violent trailer for the upcoming David Cronenberg film "Eastern Promises." The story is of a mysterious and ruthless man (Viggo Mortensen), who is tied to one of London's most notorious organized crime families. His carefully maintained existence is jarred when he crosses paths with an innocent midwife (Naomi Watts) trying to right a wrong.

The trailer starts out with Watts getting her hands on a girl's diary. In an attempt to return it, she comes across the Russian mafia. You have to love Mortensen's Russian accent; it's dead on."Eastern Promises" re-unites Mortensen with Cronenberg after the 2005 "A History of Violence." Joining the cast is also the amazing French actor Vincent Cassel, who you might know from "Derailed" and "Ocean's Twelve." "Eastern Promises" hits theaters on September 14th, in limited release.

Click here to check out the clip

Click here to read more about "Eastern Promises."

Clive Owen Forced to Hold Babies to be as Attractive as Me

From iwatchstuff, In Michael Davis' upcoming Shoot 'Em Up, the gimmick is Clive Owen carrying a newborn baby during a gunfight for much of the movie. It would've been easier to just do a documentary about me, as I often cradle newborns in my arms while bedding supermodels, beating up terrorists using only my feet, and arm wrestling manatees - but I digress.
The rub here is that the babies will be real, not fake steaming piles of CGI, like in Children of Men. Says Davis:

'If we would have shot here in LA, the rule of shooting with an infant is that they can only be in front of the camera for a half hour a day. I didn't know that. But, when we went up to Canada, the babies could work for eight hours a day. They can work 15 minutes on in front of the camera and then they need a 20 minute break. But, we had twins so virtually we could have a baby whenever we wanted. It eased it up a lot.'

Have a baby whenever he wants, who is this guy, Kevin Federline? *rimshot* Anyway, I'm glad he was able to shoot with those commies up there in Canuck-land, whose child labor laws are notoriously lax. Might as well have shot the movie in China. Babies there are already working in sweat shops and doing kung fu. Then again, maybe that's why kids grow up to be such pussies in LA.

After Friday the 13th: The TV series and A Nightmare on Elm Street: Freddy's Nightmares, why not?

From bloodydisgusting, Production company Vertigo Entertainment (The Invasion, The Strangers, Addicted,The Ring, The Grudge, The Echo) has inked a first-look television deal with Lionsgate to develop and produce scripted programming for broadcast and cable, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Vertigo will be making its first foray into scripted television with The Bates Motel, a re-imagining of Psycho that's being developed with Universal Media Studios. Read on for the full announcement.

Vertigo, which was formed in 2001 by Roy Lee and Doug Davison, has a track record of producing U.S. remakes of Asian films. In addition to best picture Oscar winner "Departed" and "Ring," Vertigo has been a producer on the "The Grudge" and its sequel, "The Ring Two" and "The Lake House."

The company recently entered the TV arena with the MTV series "I'm With Rolling Stone." It also is making its first foray into scripted television with "The Bates Motel," a re-imagining of "Psycho" that's being developed with Universal Media Studios, and a high-stakes gambling drama created by writer Matt O'Neal that is being shopped to networks.Vertigo's agreement with Lionsgate expands the existing relationship between the companies, which are working together on "The Eye," a thriller produced with Cruise/Wagner that stars Jessica Alba.

"Roy and Doug have tremendous creative instincts, outstanding relationships within the industry and the proven ability to recognize, acquire and develop high-quality material with widespread appeal," said Kevin Beggs, president of television programming and production at Lionsgate.

"We look forward to a productive and rewarding relationship as we work together to produce exciting television." Lionsgate's deal with Vertigo comes on the heels of a first-look deal the studio inked with film production company Killer Films to develop and produce programming for broadcast and cable (HR 6/14)."

The creative sensibility that defines and drives Lionsgate really appealed to us," Lee and Davison said.

"Our vision for our television business seems to fit perfectly with how Kevin is growing Lionsgate Television, and we know we will be creating compelling programming together."

Vertigo also is a producer on the upcoming films "The Invasion," a remake of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," starring Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig; "The Strangers," a suspense thriller starring Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman; "Addicted," a psychological thriller starring Sarah Michelle Gellar and Lee Pace; and "My Sassy Girl," a romantic comedy starring Elisha Cuthbert and Jesse Bradford.The company also is in various stages of production and development on such films as the dark comedy "Assassination of a High School President," starring Bruce Willis and Mischa Barton, and "Confessions of Pain," a crime thriller starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

The Simpsons almost gets an R rating

From moviesonline, Apparently, Bart Simpson will bare all in "The Simpsons” movie. It’s a bold move, and one the show would never get away with on television, so why not use the opportunity to get more daring than ever before. Bart’s always dropped his pants to bare his rear in answer to any number of situations, being the untamed skateboarding brat he is, and fans wouldn’t have him any other way. But now that he’s going to the big screen, he will have a full frontal nude scene in the beginning of "The Simpsons” movie.

"The Simpsons” was nearly slapped with a R-rating due to the Bart in the buff content. According to, this gives "The Simpsons” the unique distinction of being the first film, animated or live action, to escape the Restricted rating despite depiction of full frontal nudity. It’s a cartoon, and if anyone’s going to get away with going there and push that envelope as far as it will go just to try to prove that there’s no reason it can’t go there, it’s "The Simpsons.”

Rating this animated feature R would be a bit excessive in my opinion. Bart is America’s ultimate iconic bad boy, and I believe a "Simpsons” movie should take more risks and defy some of the limitations that broadcasting on television imposes on one of the boldest shows on TV, animated or not."The Simpsons,” and Bart’s full monty, hits theaters on July 27.

Bourne lives on

By Carol Memmott, USA TODAY

Fans of rogue CIA agent Jason Bourne get a double dose this summer. Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Betrayal, a new novel by Eric Van Lustbader (Warner, $25.99), is in stores, and the film version of Lud-lum's espionage thriller, The Bourne Ultimatum,starring Matt Damon, arrives Aug. 3.

Ludlum wrote three Bourne novels, and they didn't stop when he died in 2001. His estate chose friend and author Van Lustbader to continue the series.

"I decided to accept the estate's offer because I knew it would be fun to do, and it would be a kick to keep what I consider his greatest creation alive," he says.

In The Bourne Betrayal, Bourne searches for a missing CIA deputy director and works to dismantle a terrorism network. Van Lustbader also wrote The Bourne Legacy (2005).
Bourne is just part of Ludlum's legacy:

•210 million copies of his books in print.
•21 titles published before he died, including The Scarlatti Inheritance, The Icarus Agenda.
•6 titles published posthumously, including The Ambler Warning and The Sigma Protocol.
•Books to movies:
The Rhinemann Exchange, TV miniseries (1977)
The Osterman Weekend (1983)
The Holcroft Covenant (1985)
The Bourne Identity, TV miniseries (1988)
The Bourne Identity (2002)
The Bourne Supremacy (2004)
The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Learning: Aging Action Franchise Invades the Ivy League

From nyobserver, Paramount Pictures has taken over the campus of Yale University to film the forthcoming fourth installment of the popular Indiana Jones series. “They’ve transformed a whole block of storefronts to make them look like 1957,” reported rising senior Lauren Dunn, an English major, by phone the other day.

Construction along Chapel Street began late last week, and the production team has also set up shop in Yale’s main dining hall. “I peeked my head into Commons but I got into trouble,” Ms. Dunn said. “Someone said, ‘I’m sorry you can’t go in there; we have a confidentiality agreement.’”

Ms. Dunn, who was cast as an extra after waiting in line for four hours along with what she called “thousands” of other aspiring movie stars, is now also proudly bound by a confidentiality agreement. She did divulge that she would be playing a student, and will be wearing “period clothes.”

More details! Saybrook College master Mary Miller, an art-history professor specializing in Mesoamerican civilization, and her husband Edward Kamens, a professor of Japanese literature, have been cast as adult passers-by. “He’s got a fedora, and she’s wearing a suit, a corset and a wig,” divulged Ms. Dunn, who lopped off four inches of her hair for her own role.

Filming of the four-quel, tentatively titled Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods and directed by Steven Spielberg, begins June 28. “It’s the opening scene of the movie,” Ms. Dunn burbled excitedly. “[Harrison Ford] is teaching a class and he hears some noise outside, which turns out to be an anti-Communist rally, and he goes out to investigate and he recognizes one of his old rivals from one of the other movies and he jumps on a motorcycle and ends up being chased by some guys in a car.”

That’s not all. “I’ve heard rumors that the archeological artifact that they’re looking for is the fountain of youth,” Ms. Dunn said. “But I don’t know.”

The pretty blond student said that on Sunday she had attended a barbecue where the movie was “pretty much the only topic of conversation.” Some underclassmen callously commented the Mr. Ford was getting a bit long in the tooth for action flicks (the last Indiana Jones movie came out in 1989), but Ms. Dunn opined that even at age 64, the star, who is in a committed relationship with Calista Flockhart, 42, was still worthy of being clutched while dangling from a rope over a snake pit—or something along those lines.

Ms. Dunn, currently enrolled in a “Principles of Evolution, Ecology and Behavior” summer course, is understandably somewhat distracted from her studies. “I have a final exam on July 6, which is a possible filming date,” she said. “School does come first, although I may be filming the day before my final.”

She added: “I was on the phone with my aunt, and she said to me, ‘Lauren, if they ask you to go to Hollywood, just say yes.’”

Mr. Spielberg’s son, Theo, is currently a rising sophomore at Yale. A Paramount publicist refused to comment on the family connection, or any aspect of the production.

So what's going on with that Justice League movie?

From dark horizons, IGN Movies reports that Kieran and Michele Mulroney's script draft for the live-action "Justice League of America" movie was handed in to Warner Bros. earlier this month.

The studio is reportedly pleased with the effort which includes "a half-dozen of the best-known superheroes working together, including Batman and Superman."

The studio must now decide whether they will release a JLA movie before the next "Superman" movie. With director Bryan Singer about to shoot "Valkyrie", there remains at present no screenplay for the Super-sequel.

New Line nabs franchise I've never seen nor read

From dark horizons, New Line Cinema is in the lead to take over the "Conan the Barbarian" franchise reports Variety.

Warner Bros. Pictures lost the film rights a few weeks ago to Robert E. Howard's mythical conqueror series after seven years of assorted failed attempts to resurrect the property.Larry and Andy Wachowski, original "Conan" director John Milius, Robert Rodriguez and Boaz Yakin were all hired for their takes which varied between the original film and the more pulpy novels in tone.

If New Line makes the deal, said to be an 18-month term with one extension, the studio will have to start from scratch as Warners owns the various drafts it developed.

SciFi Wises Up!! Queen’s 1980 FLASH GORDON Theme Graces 2007 Series Teaser!!

From AICN, Apparently SciFi launched last weekend a 10-second teaser promoting its new “Flash Gordon” series, which bows in August. No footage from the show was utilized, but something rather cooler was.

One can hear a tiny yet unmistakable snippet of Queen’s “Flash Gordon” theme, for my money the best part of the 1980 Sam Jones movie. (It kinda sounded like a cover version, but I’ll leave that to the experts to debate.)

Of course, just because they use it in the promos doesn’t mean it’ll actually serve as a component of the series itself. Remember how UPN used The Calling’s “Wherever You Will Go” in all its first-season “Enterprise” promos, only to bait-and-switch into Diane Warren’s supershitty “Where My Heart Will Take Me” as the show’s actual title theme?

The Queen-y promo is now online. Want to sit through a 30-second Listerine or Esurance commercial to hear all 10 seconds of the promo for yourself? Click here!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Avatar alien revealed?

From iwatchstuff, A spy for JoBlo has send in an image that he claims is the first look at one of the aliens from James Cameron's huge 3-D sci-fi epic, Avatar. Apparently taken in a nebula by the world's shittiest cell phone, the creature looks to be some sort of strange mix between Predator and Tron. On the other hand, the picture might just be of this guy.

Transformers cartoon reboot sounds dreadful

From AICN, Cartoon and Hasbro execs said the new series, "Transformers Animated," will be significantly different than the others, adding humor, never-before-seen characters and a new premise in which the Autobots fight evil humans in Superhero fashion much more frequently than they battle the Decepticons -- the traditional "Transformers" lore since the property launched as a toy in 1984.

"We've used the basic Transformers and characters as a springboard, but then we're pretty much reimagining the whole thing," said Bob Higgins, senior vp programming and development at Cartoon Network. "What we're doing with it is basically turning it into a superheroes story. We're really excited that we're able to take this decades-old property and hopefully turn it into something that kids haven't seen or expected from a Transformers series before."

The rage virus has run its course

From cinemablend, 28 Days Later didn’t need a sequel. The quasi-zombie movie had a wonderful ending that left the story open for viewers interpretation but sealed things up nicely. In fact, it had two if you consider the original, more dismal ending that appeared briefly in theaters and is on the DVD. Regardless, we got 28 Weeks Later earlier this year which, as people who saw the sequel know, set up the possibility for the Rage Virus to spread even farther so there could be more sequels. Sadly, without creator Danny Boyle’s involvement (regardless of what Fox Atomic wants you to believe), the future wasn’t too promising for the franchise.

In fact, the box office take for 28 Weeks was lackluster to the point that Fox Atomic has wiped the potential sequels off its current slate. No 28 Months Later, no sci-fi spectacular 28 Years Later. The Rage Virus has run its course and the studio appears to be done with it. What’s more disconcerting is that Bloody Disgusting has discovered that Fox Atomic seems to be getting out of the horror business altogether – a strange move considering that’s what the subsidiary of 20th Century Fox was created to make.

According to Bloody Disgusting, the only horror movie Fox Atomic has in the works right now is a PG-13 remake of The Entity. As we all know, DVD sales can always change things. If 28 Weeks Later sells enough DVDs, there could be a continued franchise, although it might just be continued on DVD. Of course, Fox hasn’t announced a DVD release date for Weeks yet, so there’s no telling where things might lead. For now, however, it looks like the virus zombie threat ends at 28 Weeks Later and Fox Atomic just might be getting out of the horror business altogether.

JPX rights a wrong for Johnny

Sam Rami baits nerds

From iwatchstuff, In an effort to further smear mud on the retainers of everyone who criticized Spider-Man 3 for having too many villains (oh shit, I was one of those people, wasn't I?), Sam Raimi now says he'd like to see Spider-Man 4 with, like, six villains.

'I would love to see Electro, Vulture, maybe the Sinister Six as a team.'

Honestly though, I wouldn't read too much into this. Despite what the dorks on the other movie blogs are spitting about this, the source article they're quoting from is basically about Sam Raimi saying nicely that he's not coming back for a fourth Spider-Man. So when he talks about the number of villains that might be in it, he's just talking out his ass. Kind of like the time he told me my utility belt was just an extra long red vine and that my loin cloth had fallen off. Yeah, sure buddy, whatever you say.

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