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

  • Publish Date: July 26, 2013
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The official trailer for Catching Fire

After the incredible success of The Hunger Games 67 (solid critical response and more than $400 million at the domestic box office), The Hunger Games: Catching Fire will face high expectation when it hits theaters on November 22nd. The story picks up with Katniss and Peeta on their Victor’s Tour, but soon they find themselves back in the Capitol preparing for the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell). While the main players return (Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Lenny Kravitz, Elizabeth Banks, Stanley Tucci, Donald Sutherland, Woody Harrelson), new faces include Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heveansbee, Sam Clafin as Finnick Odair, and Jena Malone as Johanna Mason. There’s also a new director, Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend), who steps in for Gary Ross.

Three stunning clips from Gravity

This week Warner Bros. released three clips from Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity. Shot by Emmanuel Lubezki and starring Sandra Bullock as a doctor on her first space mission and George Clooney as a veteran astronaut, the clips speak for themselves. The film will show at the Venice Film Festival and Toronto International Film Festival before its release on October 4th.

Keanu Reeves is the one, again

Keanu Reeves stars in 47 Ronin, a long delayed (and reportedly over budget) samurai film from first-time feature filmmaker Carl Rinsch. In this fantasy epic, a small army of masterless samurai fight a vast army, sorcerers, and mystical beasts to avenge the fallen and restore honor to their people. Reeves plays Kai, a rejected half-breed who is now the key to the battle. Rinko Kikuchi (Pacific Rim), Hiroyuki Sanada (The Twilight Samurai) and Tadanobu Asano (Mongol: The Rise of Genghis Khan) also star. Look for it in 2D and 3D theaters beginning December 25th.

Kick-Ass 2 red-band trailer

Jeff Wadlow (Never Back Down), who is currently working on the script for the X-Force movie, directs this sequel to 2010’s Kick-Ass 66. Aaron Taylor-Johnson returns as Kick-Ass, and Chloe Moretz is back as Hit-Girl, while Jim Carrey’s Colonel Stars and Stripes fills the void left by Nicholas Cage. This latest trailer also introduces the evil army being assembled by Christopher Mintz-Plasse’s Red Mist, who now goes by the moniker The Mother F#!%*r. Meet The Tumor, Genghis Carnage, and Mother Russia below before seeing Kick-Ass 2 in theaters August 16th.

Riddick red band

This latest trailer for the third collaboration between Vin Diesel and director David Twohy (the first two being Pitch Black 49 and The Chronicles of Riddick 38) has a few major deaths (SPOILER ALERT) as it finds Riddick fighting off a ship of mercenaries and vicious alien predators. It’s clear that the aliens have the upper-hand with the bounty hunters played by Jordi Mollà, Karl Urban, Katee Sackhoff, Dave Bautista, Nolan Funk, Bokeem Woodbine, and Keri Hilson, but they might have to try a little harder to kill Riddick. Riddick hits theaters on September 6th.

Warner Bros. and Marvel have big pans

This year’s Comic-Con had plenty of exciting news for superhero movie fans. In its attempt to catch up to Marvel, Warner Bros. and DC Comics announced that the next Superman movie would include Batman. In the official statement, it’s not clear what the film will be titled, but Zack Snyder will direct and co-write an original story with David S. Goyer. Henry Cavill will return as Superman, but the new Batman has not been cast. Look for that film in 2015. Warner Bros. also expects to release a Flash movie in 2016 and a Justice League movie in 2017. Not to be outdone, and with most of its release slate already announced, Marvel revealed that The Avengers 2 would be titled The Avengers: Age of Ultron, meaning the main villain will not be Thanos (who was seen at the end of the The Avengers) but Ultron, a living automaton created in the comics by Hank Pym (Ant-Man), but in the movie version, Hank Pym will not be involved in its creation. Ultron also goes on to create Vision (rumored to be Vin Diesel) to fight the Avengers, but eventually Vision changes sides. Joss Whedon clarifies how the Ultron story will be handled in this video. Lastly, a press release for Guardians of the Galaxy confirmed the film’s final cast, which includes Glenn Close as Nova Prime.

Another Nymphomaniac tease

A month after releasing the first clip from his highly anticipated film, Lars von Trier is ready to tease chapter two with the release of a NSFW picture and the below (SFW) clip which finds Shia LaBeouf playing an office manager of questionable character and accent. The clip, from “Chapter 2: Jerome”, has the following text accompanying it on the film’s website: “Love is just lust with jealousy added. Though love is a shallow feeling in the eyes of the cynical nymphomaniac, young Joe is met by forces penetrating her armored defences. His name is Jerome.” Stacy Martin plays the young Joe while Charlotte Gainsbourg plays her as an adult. Nymphomaniac will open in Denmark on December 25th. A U.S. date has not been set.

A Single Shot

Currently available On Demand and coming to theaters September 20th is A Single Shot, which, in the tradition of No Country for Old Men, warns against taking a case full of money when you stumble upon it in the wilderness because, eventually, trouble will find you. This time, the man in trouble is played by Sam Rockwell, and the shady characters he has to deal with include a lawyer played by William H. Macy and a long-haired Jason Isaacs. Director David M. Rosenthal’s strong cast also includes Jeffrey Wright, Kelly Reilly, Ted Levine, and Melissa Leo.

A new Romeo and Juliet

The latest film adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet stars Hailee Steinfeld as Juliet, Douglas Booth as Romeo, Ed Westwick as Tybalt, Damian Lewis and Natascha McElhone as Lord and Lady Capulet as well as Kodi Smit-McPhee, Stellan Skarsgaard, and Paul Giamatti. Julian Fellows (Downton Abbey) adapted the play for the screen, and Carlo Carlei directs. Romeo and Juliet opens on October 11th.

Fall festival announcements

Once again, Venice Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival will have an amazing lineup of films. Venice (which starts August 28) will include Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity, Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem, James Franco’s Child of God, Kim Ki-duk’s Moebius, Kelly Reichardt’s Night Moves, Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin, and Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises. Starting on September 5th, TIFF’s typically impressive slate also includes Gravity as well as The Fifth Estate, 12 Years a Slave, Prisoners, August: Osage County, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, Jason Reitman's Labor Day, Atom Egoyan's Devil's Knot and many, many more.

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

  • Enough Said, directed by Nicole Holofcener (Please Give) and starring James Gandolfini, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Catherine Keener, and Toni Collette, will open September 20th.
  • Missed it on Syfy? Don’t worry. Sharknado will hit roughly 200 theaters for midnight screenings on August 2nd. - THR
  • The Fruitvale Station team of director Ryan Coogler and star Michael B. Jordan are in talks to reunite for Creed, a Rocky spin-off about Apollo Creed’s grandson, who would be trained by none other than Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa. - Deadline
  • It’s official. As rumored last week, Rosamund Pike will star opposite Ben Affleck in David Fincher’s Gone Girl adaptation. Neil Patrick Harris and Tyler Perry are in the mix for other roles. - THR
  • Zac Efron and Ryan Gosling are the latest names rumored to have a chance at joining the cast for Star Wars Episode VII, while Leonardo DiCaprio reportedly passed on the film to focus on a Robotech adaptation. - Latino Review
  • James McAvoy will play Victor Von Frankenstein, and Daniel Radcliffe will play Igor, in Fox’s planned re-imagining of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. - Deadline
  • Andrew Garfield will star in 99 Homes, a drama based around the foreclosure market from writer-director Ramin Bahrani (At Any Price). - THR
  • Spike Lee would like you to donate to his Kickstarter so he can make another joint. He only needs $1.25 million, and Steven Soderbergh already pledged $10,000.
  • Sacha Baron Cohen will not pursue his planned biopic of Freddy Mercury due to a conflict over the rating with the surviving members of Queen. - Deadline
  • Christopher Walken will play mobster Angelo “Gyp” DeCarlo in Clint Eastwood’s adaptation of the hit musical Jersey Boys. - Deadline
  • Sony will attempt to develop Gran Turismo into a movie franchise. - The Wrap
  • Paul Greengrass is in talks to direct The Trial of the Chicago 7. Aaron Sorkin’s script is based on the 1969 trial of Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, John Froines and Lee Weiner for conspiracy to incite a riot at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. - Deadline
  • Danny McBride has joined Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone, and Rachel McAdams in Cameron Crowe’s next film. - Huffington Post
  • Jessica Alba has joined Patrick Wilson, Ed Helms, Chris Pine, and Brooklyn Decker in Joe Carnahan’s Stretch. - Deadline
  • Kellan Lutz, MMA fighter Ronda Rousy, and boxer Victor Ortiz have joined The Expendables 3. - The Wrap & Sylvester Stallone
  • Rosemarie DeWitt will star in Monster House director Gil Kenan’s remake of Poltergeist. - Deadline
  • Dave Franco will co-star with Vince Vaughn in the comedy Business Trip for director Ken Scott (Starbuck / Delivery Man) - Variety
  • Mike Myers will make his directorial debut with the documentary Supermensch about talent manager Shep Gordon. - Deadline
  • Richard Lewis, Will Forte, Rhys Ifans, Imogen Poots, and Lucy Punch have joined Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston, and Cybill Shepherd in Peter Bogdanovich’s comedy Squirrels to the Nuts. - THR & The Wrap
  • Laura Dern will play Shailene Woodley’s mom in Josh Boone’s adaptation of John Green’s book, The Fault in Our Stars. - Variety
  • Topher Grace and Wes Bentley will join Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Michael Caine, Bill Irwin, Mackenzie Foy, John Lithgow, and Casey Affleck in Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar. - Deadline & THR
  • Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor are in talks to join Johnny Depp in David Koepp’s Mortdecai, an adaptation of Kyril Bonfiglioli’s The Great Mortdecai Moustache Mystery. - Variety
  • Carey Mulligan is in talks to star in Fury for writer Abi Morgan (Shame) and director Sarah Gavron (Brick Lane). - Deadline
  • 2004‘s The Butterfly Effect will be rebooted by original writer-director Eric Bress, but this time he only gets to write the script. - Variety
  • Abigail Breslin will play Arnold Schwarzenegger’s zombie daughter in Maggie. - THR
  • James McTeigue (The Raven, V for Vendetta) will direct a reboot of Bloodsport from a script by Robert Mark Kamen (Taken), and Stephen Fung (Tai Chi Zero) will attempt to revive 1989‘s Kickboxer. No word yet on Jean Claude Van Damme’s participation in either film. - Variety & Deadline
  • Melissa McCarthy is in talks to reunite with director Paul Feig (The Heat, Bridesmaids) to star in the spy comedy Susan Cooper. - THR
  • Matthew Vaughn has cast Taron Egerton as the young spy in his adaptation of Mark Millar’s The Secret Service. Egerton will be mentored by Colin Firth and Michael Caine. Emma Watson and Bella Heathcote are the favorites for the female lead. - Variety

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