October 22, 2016
        Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race        

Director Chris Columbus speaks on the stars of ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Percy Jackson’

By Whitney Milam

HollywoodNews.com: Chris Columbus knows his wizards and Greek gods. After directing the first two “Harry Potter” movies, he brought the film adaptation of Rick Riordan’s “Percy Jackson” series to the big screen, and as he tells the Coventry Telegraph, the two aren’t as unlike as you might think.

“All fantasy films are connected in some way, whether it’s Spider-Man or The Lord Of The Rings or Percy Jackson or Potter, they’re connected at their heart by a hero who is sometimes severely flawed, looking to fill this emptiness inside by going on a quest.” Although, he clarifies, “Potter is more about wizardry whereas this is Greek mythology.”

Columbus, who was originally responsible for casting Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint as children for Harry, Hermione, and Ron respectively, says of the child actor casting process, “Once you set a standard and you say no enough times, the right kid will appear–it’s a matter of never compromising…When I did Potter I realised that you really have to cast the family as well, and look at their parents, and those Potter kids have turned out pretty well.”

With “Percy Jackson”, Columbus explains that he was working with older “actors that were a little more seasoned than the first Potter film, where the kids had never acted before,” and is full of praise for “Jackson”‘s star, Logan Lerman. “His performance was so strong and mature and I felt I had the perfect Percy and I feel he is going on to have a great career as an actor like a Matt Damon or Robert DeNiro and I have never said that before about anyone–but he is that good. He is not concerned about fame–he wants to make great movies.”

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