Film Friday: This Week's Movie News and New Trailers

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  • Publish Date: March 30, 2012

The official trailer for Sundance hit Safety Not Guaranteed

Winner of the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, Safety Not Guaranteed uses a real personal ad as the jumping off point for a comedy about a magazine writer (New Girl’s Jake Johnson) and his assistants (played by Aubrey Plaza and Karan Soni) who investigate the writer of the ad which promises time travel but not safety. The man who wrote the ad is played by Mark Duplass, and as the trio learn more about him, they suspect he might not be as crazy as they first thought. Reviews from Sundance were almost universally positive. The film is the feature debut for director Colin Trevorrow and writer Derek Connolly and it comes to theaters June 8.

Ron Burgundy is back!

I’m Ron Burgundy? Yes you are Will Ferrell, and Paul Rudd is Brian Fantana, Steve Carell is Brick Tamland, and they are all officially back for Anchorman 2. According to Deadline, Adam McKay will also return as director. No word yet on Veronica Corningstone’s return or plot details, but the announcement was made in typically brash Burgundy style. See below:

Our first good look at The Dictator

So this is what the film’s really about? That might be one’s reaction to the new trailer for The Dictator, Sacha Baron Cohen’s send-up of a Middle Eastern despot. He already used the Oscars to create a little publicity by addressing his ban and then showing up on the red carpet in full regalia and dumping Kim Jong-il’s ashes on Ryan Seacrest, but now we finally see what Anna Faris is up to in the film (as well as Ben Kingsley and John C. Reilly). Larry Charles, who helmed both Borat 89 and Bruno 54, directs. Check it out in theaters beginning May 11.

The House at the End of the Street

Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence plays Elissa, a young girl new to the neighborhood, who becomes friends with Ryan (Max Thieriot), the young boy down the street. It’s innocent enough until Lawrence’s mom (Elizabeth Shue) informs her that Ryan’s sister murdered their parents in that very house and then disappeared, leaving Ryan as the lone survivor... or is he? Kids, listen to your parents when they tell you stories of double murder. Mark Tonderai directs from a script by the house-obsessed David Loucka (Dream House 35). The House at the End of the Street (aka HATES) hits theaters September 21.

From Mad Men to the big screen

Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner has put together a talented group of funny people to help him make his feature directorial debut a success. THR reports that Owen Wilson, Zach Galifianakis, and most likely Amy Poehler will star in You Are Here, a project that Weiner describes as his “passion for eight years.” The press release contained the following plot synopsis: “Local weatherman and freewheeling bachelor Steve Dallas (Wilson) and bipolar man-child Ben (Galifianakis) are childhood best friends who embark on a road trip home after Ben discovers that his estranged father has passed away. Once there, Ben is shocked to learn that his eccentric father had big plans for him and he's inherited a whole lot more than his father's money. As Ben struggles with his new responsibilities, his friendship with Steve is tested by the complications of his inheritance, his sister Terry's (Poehler) ambition, and Steve's desire to be with his father's beautiful young widow Angela.” Interested?

Two highly anticipated 2012 films get quick teasers

If you’re one of the five people that didn’t see The Hunger Games 67, you might have missed the first teaser for The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2. It garnered chuckles from the crowd in many theaters, but surely that won’t keep it from making an obscene amount of money when it comes to theaters November 16. Also out this week is the first look at Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, and Jessica Biel in Len Wiseman’s Total Recall remake. A full trailer should be ready next week, but in the trailer for the trailer (hopefully not the start of a trend), viewers can already see visual similarities between the original and (for some reason) The Fifth Element . The film hits theaters August 3.

Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks are People Like Us

Alex Kurtzman and his partner Roberto Orci are known for writing films not known for their writing—Transformers 61, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen 35, Star Trek 83, Cowboys & Aliens 50—but with People Like Us, Kurtzman’s feature directorial debut, they move away from the big action film and into the family drama, where their skills will be on full display. Chris Pine stars as a struggling salesman whose father dies, leading him to discover he has a sister he’s never known. Elizabeth Banks plays his long lost sister. Michelle Pfeiffer plays his mom, and Olivia Wilde plays his girlfriend, while Jon Favreau, Philip Baker Hall, and Mark Duplass have supporting roles. People Like Us will be released June 29.

Check out the Hotel Transylvania

In Hotel Transylvania, Dracula has gathered all his monster friends—Frankenstein and his bride, The Mummy, Quasimodo, The Invisible Man, a family of werewolves—to celebrate his daughter Mavis’s 118th birthday, but his plans are disrupted when an ordinary guy crashes the party and expresses interest in Mavis. That’s My Boy father and son Adam Sandler and Andy Samberg voice Dracula and regular guy Jonathan respectively, and Selena Gomez (Mavis), Kevin James (Frankenstein), David Spade (Quasimodo), Cee Lo Green (Murray the Mummy), Fran Drescher (the Bride of Frankenstein), Steve Buscemi, and Molly Shannon also lend their voice talent to the film that opens on September 21.

Rise of the Guardians

Another animated film that plays off of established legends is Dreamworks’ Rise of the Guardians. Based on the William Joyce book series The Guardians of Childhood with a a screenplay by David Lindsay-Abaire (Rabbit Hole 76), the film tells the story of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, and Jack Frost as they battle the Nightmare King. Voice talent includes Alec Baldwin, Hugh Jackman, Isla Fisher, Chris Pine, and Jude Law. The multi-talented Joyce recently won an Academy Award for his animated short The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, which you can see here before checking out Rise of the Guardians in theaters beginning November 21.

Somewhat new trailers for American Reunion and Battleship

This summer, Universal has a little bit of money riding on the success of the comedy in American Reunion and the action in Battleship, so it’s no surprise that new trailers keep appearing to entice moviegoers into theaters. The latest don’t offer much in the way of new comedy or action, but they serve as a good primer for newbies. The American Pie reunion takes place April 6, and Peter Berg’s board game adaptation via Transformers hits theaters May 18.

Kenneth Branagh’s back in action

Vulture and Variety report that Kenneth Branagh, who last directed Thor 57, will helm Paramount’s latest attempt to revitalize Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan character, a role already played by Alec Baldwin in The Hunt for Red October 58, Harrison Ford in Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger 74, and Ben Affleck in The Sum of All Fears 45. Branagh will replace Jack Bender (Lost), who had to leave after script trouble caused a scheduling conflict. Chris Pine is set to play Ryan, and David Koepp (Mission: Impossible 60, Spider-Man 73) has turned in the latest version of the screenplay, attempting to please producers who want an action film, a thriller, and a character-driven spy film all in one. Expect shooting to begin once Pine wraps up Star Trek 2.

Not your typical Mother’s Day (we hope)

Darren Lynn Bousman (Saw II 40, Saw III 48, Saw IV 36, 11-11-11 26) directs this remake of Charles Kaufman’s 1980 horror film Mother’s Day. (If you were expecting another sequel to Valentine's Day, you're in the wrong place.) This time, the film stars Rebecca De Mornay as the titular mother who terrorizes Jaime King, Frank Grillo, and their party guests after her children take them hostage. Mother’s Day will get a limited release beginning May 4.

The official U.S. trailer for Sleepless Night

This festival favorite chronicles a very bad day in the life of a corrupt cop. Vincent (Tomer Sisley) steals a bag of coke from the wrong mob boss and as a result his son is kidnapped as ransom. He has until the end of the night to save his son, so expect an action-packed evening. Frédéric Jardin directs Sleepless Night which comes to a few theaters May 11 and VOD and iTunes April 17.

The Intouchables to become Untouchable (but not The Untouchables)

According to Variety, director Paul Feig (Bridesmaids 75) and actor Colin Firth are in negotiations to direct and star in an English-language remake of the French hit The Intouchables. The true story comes from Philippe Pozzo di Borgo's memoir Le Second Souffle and details the relationship between a wealthy quadriplegic and his immigrant caretaker. The French original starring François Cluzet and Omar Sy (who beat out Jean Dujardin for the César award for Best Actor) will get a limited release in the states beginning May 25th. Check out the trailer below.

A first look at The Samaritan

Samuel L. Jackson plays Foley, a grifter just released from prison who gets caught up with Luke Kirby’s Ethan, the son of his old partner. What follows is a game of who’s playing who between the grizzled Jackson and the upstart Kirby. David Weaver directs a supporting cast that includes Tom Wilkinson, Deborah Kara Unger, Gil Bellows, and Ruth Negga. The Samaritan arrives in limited release May 16.

Step Up Evolution

Is this a remake of Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo? The fourth installment in the surprisingly durable Step Up series (Step Up 48, Step Up 2: The Streets 50, Step Up 3-D 45) takes the wealthy landowner taking the homes and jobs of the less fortunate storyline and revamps it with new protest dances. Peter Gallagher plays the evil developer, while the dancers are led by Kathryn McCormick, Ryan Guzman, Stephen Boss, Chadd Smith, and Megan Boone.  Scott Speer (The LXD 2: Secrets of the Ra) directs. Check it out in theaters beginning July 27.

Meet the ladies of Skyfall

Joining Daniel Craig’s 007 in Sam Mendes’ Skyfall are two new Bond girls: Bérénice Marlohe and Naomie Harris. Check out the latest video blogs from the Skyfall production and learn a bit more about their characters.

Checking in with the What Are You Thinking?!? Department: Triplets

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Danny DeVito, and Eddie Murphy are attached to star in Triplets, a sequel to the 1988 comedy Twins which starred Schwarzenegger and DeVito as Julius and Vincent, twins separated at birth for experimental purposes. Murphy would play their long-lost brother in a story that is still being developed. - Heat Vision

Quick notes: Rumors, release dates, casting news and more

  • Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master, with Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, and Joaquin Phoenix, will open October 12th.
  • The Apocalypse, based on Seth Rogen and Jay Baruchel’s short Jay and Seth vs The Apocalypse, will hit theaters June 14, 2013. The comedy will also star Jonah Hill, James Franco, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson and be Evan Goldberg’s directorial debut.
  • Deadline reports that every in-demand actress is vying for the role of Nora Charles opposite Johnny Depp in Rob Marshall’s remake of The Thin Man. The list includes Amy Adams, Emma Stone, Carey Mulligan, Eva Green, Rachel Weisz, Kristen Wiig, Emily Blunt and Isla Fisher. Good luck ladies!
  • Melissa Leo has joined the cast of Oblivion, Joseph Kosinski’s follow-up to TRON: Legacy starring Tom Cruise, Morgan Freeman, Andrea Riseborough and Olga Kurylenko. - Deadline
  • Thomas Mann (the birthday boy in Project X) has been cast in Matt Piedmont’s (Casa Di Mi Padre) adaptation of King Dork, Frank Portman’s novel about two friends “who bond over their shared love of classic rock and roll, which helps them cope with the agony of getting through high school in 1987.” - Variety
  • Chloe Moretz has been offered the lead in Kimberly Peirce’s (Boys Don’t Cry) remake of Stephen King’s Carrie. - Deadline
  • Fifty Shades of Grey, the popular erotic e-book series that began as fan fiction based on the Twilight series was snapped up in a bidding war by Universal Pictures and Focus Features for $5 million. Quite a bit for a racy tale of a young college student and her S&M-tinged relationship with an older billionaire. - Variety
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will be known as Ninja Turtles in its latest version to be directed by Jonathan Liebesman (Wrath of the Titans). Producer Michael Bay again claims all is well.
  • The Wachowskis want Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis to star in their new sci-fi project Jupiter Ascending. - Deadline
  • Jane Fonda (aka Hanoi Jane during the Vietnam War) will play conservative Nancy Reagan in The Butler, Lee Daniel’s new drama about White House butler Eugene Allen, who will be played by Forest Whitaker. - Variety
  • Gavin Rossdale of Bush, Kirsten Dunst, and Paris Hilton filmed parts for Sofia Coppola’s Bling Ring this week. - The Playlist
  • Stanley Tucci will play a terminally ill psychiatrist opposite Emma Watson's suicidal young woman in Your Voice in My Head, David Yates's first post-Harry Potter film. - Variety
  • Justin Lin (Fast Five) is attached to direct a new adaptation (there were six made in Japan in the 1970s) of the manga Lone Wolf and Cub, the story of a samurai assassin who seeks revenge on the clan who killed the mother of his young son who travels with him. - Deadline
  • Zooey Deschanel and Domhnall Gleeson (Never Let Me Go) are in talks to star in Richard Curtis’ (Love Actually) time-travel love story About Time - Variety
  • Kasi Lemmons (Eve’s Bayou) will write and direct an adaptation of Zadie Smith’s novel On Beauty. - Deadline
  • Julianne Moore will star alongside Scarlett Johansson in Joseph Gordon-Levitt's untitled directorial debut. - Variety
  • D.J. Caruso (I Am Number Four) will direct Invertigo. Check out the plot synopsis at Heat Vision.
  • There will be a sequel to 2008‘s Anvil! The Story of Anvil called Anvil 2: The Quest For World Peace. The new documentary will follow guitarist/vocalist Steve "Lips" Kudlow and drummer Robb Reiner as they “throw a peace concert in Israel.” Read what they have to say on their Facebook page.
  • Ben Affleck will star in Nathan Decker, a dramedy about “a politician who is caught in an affair and returns to his hometown to confront his past.”  - Heat Vision
  • First it was Chris Evans then Dominic Cooper then Jake Gyllenhaal and then Jeremy Renner but finally it’s Gerard Butler who will star opposite Gary Oldman in Albert Hugh’s Motor City. - Variety
  • Human Centipede director Tom Six is suing lead actor Dieter Laser for walking away from the third installment of the horror series which was to begin shooting in seven weeks. Is it a bizarre publicity stunt, part of the narrative of the third film, or for real? Bleeding Cool has the details.

Comments (3)

  • LamontRaymond  

    Bring on Jupiter Ascending.... has to be better than the Matrix sequels....

  • MarcDoyle  

    Two positive signs for humanity - a sequel to Anvil, and no 3rd installment of Human Centipede - though I should reserve final judgment on the latter for having not seen the 2nd Centipede. Sign me up for Safety Not Guaranteed - it's great seeing those particular actors getting more of the spotlight.

  • ChuckPalantine  

    October 12th

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