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

  • Publish Date: April 15, 2011
  • Comments: ↓ 4 user comments

Watch the second trailer for Cowboys & Aliens

Director Jon Favreau tries to score another comic book based hit -- and Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde, and Sam Rockwell star -- in this story of an outlaw who just might be the key to defeating an invading alien race in the Wild West of 1873. This second trailer reveals little new information, but it does provide a few new glimpses of the aliens, along with an amped up soundtrack and some comic relief by Rockwell. Cowboys & Aliens hits theaters July 29.

The first look at Rise of the Planet of the Apes

After a title change and many release date changes, the Planet of the Apes prequel Rise of the Planet of the Apes is now set to arrive in theaters August 5. The film stars James Franco as a genetic engineer whose latest drug leads to intelligence in apes and the beginning of a war. Rupert Wyatt (The Escapist) directs a cast that also includes Tom Felton (having wrapped up his work in Harry Potter), Freida Pinto (currently starring in Miral), Brian Cox, John Lithgow, and Andy Serkis (using his Gollum performance-capture skills for the lead ape, Caesar). The script comes from the pen of Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, the writers of The Relic, and WETA Digital provide the visual effects.

Cannes 2011 lineup revealed

This year’s Cannes Film Festival will have a little something for everyone. Reclusive director with a ridiculously hyped new film? Check out Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life, his first film to be shown in competition. Polarizing director who courts controversy with each release? Lars Von Trier will bring his latest, Melancholia, to the party. New films from beloved previous winners? Choose from Pedro Almodóvar’s (1999 best director winner for All About My Mother) The Skin That I Live In starring Antonio Banderas, The Dardenne Brothers’ (Palme d’Or winners in 1999 for Rosetta and 2005 for The Child) latest, The Kid with the Bike, or Nanni Moretti’s (2001’s Palme d’Or winner The Son’s Room) papal drama, We Have a Pope. Women are well represented too. Lynne Ramsay’s first feature since 2002’s Morvern Callar, We Need to Talk About Kevin, stars Tilda Swinton and John C. Reilly, and Australian newcomer Julia Leigh brings the erotic drama Sleeping Beauty to the competition. Asia will also be in competition with Hara-Ki: Death of a Samurai by Takashi Miike and Hanezu no Tsuki by Naomi Kawase (winner of the Grand Prize in 2007 for Mogari no mori). Sean Penn is the only actor to be appearing in two films in competition (The Tree of Life and Paolo Sorrentino’s This Must Be the Place), but Nicolas Winding Refn’s first Hollywood production, Drive, starring Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan, and out of competition films like Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris will bring plenty of stars to the Croisette. Check out the full list of films including, those in Un Certain Regard.

Man of Steel vs. General Zod

Finally, Henry Cavill has someone to fight. Michael Shannon (The Runaways, Boardwalk Empire) will play General Zod in Zack Snyder’s now officially titled Man of Steel. In the press release, Snyder praised Shannon as “a powerful actor who can project both the intelligence and the malice of the character, making him perfect for the role.” The role of General Zod was played in iconic fashion by Terence Stamp in Superman and Superman II, making the phrase “Kneel before Zod” one of the best of any comic book villain. Shannon also commented on the casting process while at the RiverRun International Film Festival. Check out a section from the interview below. (It’s worth it.) The final Superman news of the week comes courtesy of LatinoReview. Their source reports that the film is an origin story, that Superman’s father and mother (Jor-El and Lara) as well as his home planet of Krypton will be seen in the film, and that the villainess in the plot is not Ursa but Faora. Man of Steel is set for a December 2012 release.

Abduction trailer

Taylor Lautner stars in this thriller about a teen who tries to discover the truth about his life after seeing his photo on a missing persons website. It’s a movie, so Lautner is obviously someone really important that many people are either willing to die for or are trying to kill. The films stars Maria Bello as his karate-chopping mom, Lily Collins as his best friend, Michael Nyqvist (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) as a baddie, and Alfred Molina and Sigourney Weaver as agents trying to capture and aid Lautner respectively. John Singleton directs. See Abduction in theaters beginning September 23.

A trailer for John Madden's The Debt

John Madden (Shakespeare in Love, Proof) directs this remake of an Israeli film (Ha-Hov) about a trio of Mossad agents who claimed to have caught and killed a Nazi war criminal only to be haunted by him thirty years later when he claims to be alive. In the film’s 1965 timeline, the agents are played by Jessica Chastain, Sam Worthington, and Marton Csokas, while Helen Mirren, Ciaran Hinds, and Tom Wilkinson play the aging former agents thirty years later. The sale of Miramax delayed the release of the film, but Focus Features will now release it August 31.

Another look at The Priest

The latest trailer for Priest doesn’t expand on the story but it does bring the action, with Paul Bettany killing some crazy looking vampires. He stars as the titular priest, who returns to action after his niece, played by Lily Collins, is kidnapped. Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q, Christopher Plummer, and Karl Urban are also featured in this adaptation of the Korean comic by Hyung Min-woo. Scott Charles Stewart (Legion) directs. Priest hits theaters May 13.

They Live ... again

"I’ve come to chew bubble gum and kick ass, and I’m all out of bubble gum." That is Rowdy Roddy Piper in the John Carpenter film, They Live, and Matt Reeves better take note because, according to Deadline, he has signed on to write and direct a new adaptation of Ray Nelson’s 8 O’Clock in the Morning, the short story used as the basis for They Live. Reeves, at least, makes a solid case for being trusted when it comes to remakes; his Let Me In was a good take on the successful Swedish film Let the Right One In. Reeves promises his new film will be different, though, “There could be a desperate love story at the center of this. Carpenter took a satirical view of the material and the larger political implication that we’re being controlled. I am very drawn to the emotional side, the nightmare experience with the paranoia of Invasion of the Body Snatchers or a Roman Polanski-style film.” As long as Roddy Piper and Keith David slug it out in a back alley at some point in the film, viewers will be satisfied.

The first trailer for Love, Wedding, Marriage

Dermot Mulroney makes his directorial debut with this romantic comedy about a therapist who begins to question her own marriage after her parents announce they that are getting divorced. Mandy Moore stars alongside Kellan Lutz (The Twilight Saga) and Jessica Szohr (Gossip Girl). James Brolin and Jane Seymour play her parents. Love, Wedding, Marriage comes to theaters June 3.

The Hangover Part 2 makes some cuts

Variety reported this week that Liam Neeson had to be cut out of the upcoming comedy sequel The Hangover Part 2. His role as a Bangkok tattoo artist -- the same role that originally went to Mel Gibson but was withdrawn after objections from cast and crew -- was re-shot with Nick Cassavetes. Director Todd Phillips wanted to re-shoot with Neeson after he made some cuts to the film which impacted the narrative, but Neeson was already shooting The Clash of the Titans sequel and could not make it back. Cassavetes last appeared in front of the camera as himself in a send up of a macho director on Entourage. He is currently preparing to direct Gotti: Three Generations.

The Perfect Host trailer

David Hyde Pierce (Frasier) stars in this psychological thriller about a criminal (Clayne Crawford) who seeks refuge at the wrong guy’s house. Just how nuts is Pierce’s Warwick Wilson? Well, the trailer provides a few hints. The is writer/director Nick Tomnay’s debut feature. After premiering at Sundance in 2010, The Perfect Host will finally get a limited release beginning July 1.

The first trailer for Cannes entrant Sleeping Beauty

Julia Leigh previously gained acclaim as the writer of the novels The Hunter and Disquiet, but this week the Australian writer/director learned that her debut film, Sleeping Beauty, will premiere in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. In the film, Emily Browning (Sucker Punch) plays a university student who takes a job in a brothel as a Sleeping Beauty, only to discover that what occurs in her sleep disrupts her waking life. The trailer does an excellent job of setting a creepy tone and is borderline NSFW. No release date has been set.

Passion Play trailer

Writer Mitch Glazer (Scrooged, The Recruit) makes his directorial debut with a movie that star Mickey Rourke has already called terrible. The film tells the story of an angel (Megan Fox), a gangster (Bill Murray) and a down on his luck trumpet payer (Rourke). Rhys Ifans and Kelly Lynch also make appearances. This will probably be the only trailer to list Mickey Rourke as an Academy Award winner (pay close attention) which is pretty kind considering Rourke’s response to the film getting only a limited release beginning May 6: “That’s because it’s not very good.” He has since apologized, in his own unique way.

A first look at Will Ferrell’s Spanish-language comedy

There’s no release date yet, but this telenovela spoof (if such a thing is even possible) claims to have all the passion, adventure, intrigue, betrayal, danger, romance, guns, cigarettes, special effects, and slaps that a Will Farrell Spanish-language comedy could want. His Armando Alvarez is struggling to keep his father’s ranch -- thus the film's title, Casa de mi Padre (House of My Father) -- but his younger brother (Diego Luna) and a crazy drug lord (Gael Garcia Bernal) have other plans. Funny or Die and SNL alums Matt Piedmont and Andrew Steele direct and write, respectively.

Woody Allen’s next project

Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris is opening the Cannes Film Festival this year, but he’s already thinking of another European city, Rome. Deadline reports that Alec Baldwin has committed to star in the director’s next comedy. He will join Penelope Cruz and, according to Variety, Jesse Eisenberg and Ellen Page as well. As is typical for an Allen film, plot details are scarce.

Seven Days in Utopia trailer

Sure it’s a movie about golf with what looks to be a cliche-ridden story, but with a strong cast maybe this film will find an audience. Lucas Black re-teams with his Sling Blade and Get Low castmate, Robert Duvall, in this story of a golfer who tries to find his swing in the small town of Utopia. Academy Award winner Melissa Leo and True Blood’s Deborah Ann Woll also star, and Matt Russell makes his feature directing debut. The film is based on David L. Cook’s book, Golf’s Sacred Journey: Seven Days at the Links of Utopia. Look for it in theaters beginning August 12.

Monte Carlo trailer

Selena Gomez, Leighton Meester, and Katie Cassidy star in this romantic comedy about three friends traveling in Europe who are whisked away to Monte Carlo when one of them (Gomez) is mistaken for a princess. Thomas Bezucha (The Family Stone) directs a cast that also includes Cory Monteith (Glee) and Andie MacDowell. Monte Carlo will be in theaters July 1.

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

  • The next (and 23rd overall) James Bond movie will be released November 9, 2012, and you can also expect a Bond 24 in the future.
  • The McG-directed This Means War, starring Tom Hardy and Chris Pine as C.I.A. agents fighting over Reese Witherspoon, will be released February 17, 2012.
  • Jake Scott (Welcome to the Rileys) will direct a film about singer Jeff Buckley, who drowned tragically at age 30. - Deadline
  • Jessica Biel could join Colin Farrell and Bryan Cranston in Len Wiseman’s Total Recall remake. - Variety
  • Tom Hanks will star in an adaptation of David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, which will be written and co-directed by Tom Tykwer and the Wachowskis. - Deadline
  • Visual Effects supervisor Tim Miller has been hired to direct Deadpool. Ryan Reynolds is still attached but very busy. - 24 Frames
  • Tobey Maguire, who already worked with Ang Lee in The Ice Storm and Ride With the Devil, will re-join him for Life of Pi. - Variety
  • Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) will direct Out of the Furnace, the story of a recently released convict who seeks revenge after his brother is murdered. - Deadline
  • Walter Hill will direct Sylvester Stallone in Headshot. To remind you of how good Walter Hill is as a director, visit the A.V. Club. - AICN
  • Joe Pesci will join John Travolta in Gotti: Three Generations. Lindsay Lohan is also in talks. -
  • Joaquin Phoenix in talks to join Philip Seymour Hoffman in Paul Thomas Anderson’s untitled religious drama. - Variety
  • Bradley Cooper could star in the remake of The Crow. - Heat Vision
  • Rufus Sewell will play the main vampire villain in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. - Variety
  • Green Day’s American Idiot musical will become a feature film. - THR
  • Hugh Laurie will star in an adaptation of the Lloyd Jones novel Mr. Pip for director Andrew Adamson (The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian) - THR
  • Sally Field will play Mary Todd Lincoln in Steven Spielberg’s biopic, Lincoln. Daniel Day Lewis will play Lincoln. - /Film

We're sorry, but comments are closed for this article.

Comments (4)

  • Dan  

    Abduction might be the most un-original action thriller I have ever seen. Singleton never could live up to his film debut..

  • Matt  

    I've found a mistake... That's the first trailer for Cowboy & Aliens not the second.

  • Mitch Tough  

    Sleeping Beauty looks exceedingly creepy, but also kind of hot. It's down as a must-see.

  • Ricado  

    Hell yeah Casa de Mi Padre is like a Mexican Robert Rodriguez movie + Intelligent f*cking comedy talent. Unlike whatever Your Highness tried to capture.

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