By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: I’m not familiar with “The Green Hornet” story. The trailer for the upcoming “Green Hornet” movie, which was released online late last night, makes me feel like I’ve heard it all before.
Seth Rogen plays Britt Reid, the spoiled, party animal son of media mogul Jack Reid (Tom Wilkinson). Jack’s a good man who’s disgusted by his city’s corruptions and disappointed in his do-nothing son. Quicker than you can say “Bruce Wayne,” Jack is murdered, forcing Britt to team with Jack’s man-servant, Kato (Jay Chou), to bring down the head baddie (Christoph Waltz, selling out quickly after winning an Oscar for “Inglourious Basterds”).
The clip establishes that capsule and tries to sell the film’s other two assets: carnival action, as directed by Michel Gondry; and Rogen’s frat-guy comedy.
The opening scenes of Rogen drinking his nights away looks like the sizzle reel for a “Knocked Up” sequel. Granted, he’ll likely snap out of that mode relatively quickly and get down to superhero business. Yet even when the action commences, it feels like James Bond meets “Mission Impossible” meets every damn spy thriller franchise out there. Except this hero wears a green mask.
Oh, and it will be released in 3-D. Great.
When “The Green Hornet” moved its release date to January 2011, alarms went off. Good movies don’t come out in January. Movies like “Leap Year” and “The Spy Next Door” come out in January.
And I’m not opposed to seeing a slimmed-down Rogen doing action, though the underrated “Pineapple Express” scratched that itch. Word is that there’s an ace up Green Hornet’s sleeve, that Gondry — a visual wizard — has something called “Kato Vision” (not illustrated in the clip) that illustrates how Kato views situations through different eyes. That could be cool. But will it correct Chou’s lifeless delivery, because right now it feels like Rogen is working overtime to inject life into the duo’s shared scenes, and that’s not promising.
Check out the clip for yourself below. “The Green Hornet,” in 3-D, opens Jan. 14, 2011.
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Tag Archives: James Bond
By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Why not, right?
Television-to-movie adaptations are the current craze, and have been for the past few years. Hollywood is going back to the archives for “The A-Team,” celebrating present-day hits with “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” and looking ahead to future big-screen stories from the “24” and (possibly) “Lost” universe. “Alias,” at the very least, belongs in the conversation.
This isn’t coming out of thin air. The idea came to me after digesting Fox’s recent Blu-ray touch-up of “Elektra” while surfing The Hollywood Reporter’s column asking if movie audiences are tiring of sequels. The answer to that age-old question is yes and no. Most of us didn’t need to see another “Shrek” film, and clearly “Sex and the City 2″ ran out of gas before Liza Minelli put the finishing touches on Beyonce’s “All the Single Ladies.”
But “Iron Man 2″ brought plenty of story material to the table — some would argue too much, in fact — and audience members responded in kind. Sequels will always be accepted if they continue to expand on the overall story being told. Take the fourth “Die Hard,” as an example. It felt like a natural progression for Bruce Willis’ indestructible officer John McClane. A rumored fifth adventure, however, might be overdoing it. We’ll know when we see it.
Why “Alias,” though?
Well, the show (which ran from 2001-06 with a relatively unknown but perfectly cast Jennifer Garner) was nothing short of fantastic. The earliest seasons, which featured Garner’s double-agent character Sydney Bristow juggling a private life and a lethal secret life), were enormously elaborate and entertaining episodes of spy fiction. Character actors Victor Garber and Ron Rifkin chewed the right amount of scenery as Garner’s father and nemesis. And while the show got caught up in a convoluted mythology that led to the series’ ultimate demise, there’s PLENTY of material left on the table to turn Bristow into a big-screen James Bond for multiple feature-length adventures — especially while Bond, himself, languishes in MGM’s financial discontent.
Why now? For a number of reasons.
1. Bond is in limbo.
As we just mentioned, the next Bond adventure officially is TBD. A Sydney Bristow thriller could not only fill the void left by 007, it could potentially replace him on the spy food chain in ways Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt could not.
2. A TV version might be on the horizon
Rumors of an “Alias” reboot on network television are starting to swirl. And […]
By Todd Gilchrist
As a huge fan of Sylvain White’s Stomp the Yard, a surprisingly thoughtful addition to the growing legacy of urban dance movies that proliferated in recent years, I was intrigued to see what he would do next. Too often, filmmakers with even a little bit of style show a lot of promise but quickly disappear into projects that afford them plenty of visual exercise but precious little else. But it’s a testament to White’s dissatisfaction with a potential career status quo that makes The Losers, his latest film, such an effective piece of entertainment: he clearly not only wanted to bring a strong visual sense, but a measured amount of character development and genuine, coherent storytelling in order to elevate what otherwise might be a thrill ride that is forgotten by the time the credits have rolled.
Hollywood News spoke to White earlier this week via telephone to talk about the film, which is being released nationwide today. In addition to exploring his own artistic impulses, he talked about the film’s uniquely multiethnic cast, and finally hinted at what might be to come if The Losers turns out to be a box office winner.
Hollywood News: In Stomp the Yard, you managed to deliver the meat and potatoes of a dance movie but still made it about the character’s journey, and didn’t overshadow, say, the education and fellowship that the character needed to discover. In this film how did you juggle the demands of delivering action and fun and energy and yet retain the dimensionality of the characters?
Sylvain White: Well, that’s the whole bag of tricks right there. There was a multitude of challenges with this movie; the first thing that was the trickiest was to find the tone of the movie. The comic book has this great combination of action and comedy, and it’s done in kind of a unique way – it’s not Bad Boys, it’s not Lethal Weapon, it’s something different. It’s very unique in that sense, and I wanted to make sure that I was going to be able to translate that into cinematic language in the right way. That was my first task. Second, this was my first action movie, so I had to study very hard to get ready for it just like I studied very hard before making Stomp the Yard, when I studied every dance movie that had been made. For […]
BY SEAN O’CONNELL
James Bond has been put on ice as the producers of the long-running spy franchise figure out the next steps in light of the financial issues plaguing MGM Studios.
“Due to the continuing uncertainty surrounding the future of MGM and the failure to close a sale of the studio, we have suspended development of ‘Bond 23′ indefinitely,” said producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli of Eon Productions. “We do not know when development will resume and do not have a date for the release of ‘Bond 23.’”
The sequel was on track for a late 2011 release, with Daniel Craig back in the lead role and director Sam Mendes behind the camera. MGM had no official comment on the development, but L.A. Times reporter Claudia Eller writes that MGM’s lenders, coping with $3.7 billion in debt, “have been pushing for either a sale of the company or a restructuring with an infusion of capital to remain a stand-alone operation.”
Will Bond survive? And if the legendary agent with a license to kill does make another adventure (which is very likely), will it be under the MGM umbrella? Stay tuned.
BY TODD GILCHRIST
It’s hard not to immediately think of Pierce Brosnan as James Bond, or even Remington Steele, but in the last decade, he’s played a remarkable variety of roles. During a recent roundtable interview, Brosnan explained that he’d burnt out on being the perfectly-coiffed, cool-as-a-cucumber leading man, and decided to take on some different challenges. One of those challenges was producing in addition to directing, and eight films later with his partner Beau St. Clair, Brosnan is set to release The Greatest.
Directed by newcomer Shana Feste, The Greatest stars Brosnan alongside Susan Sarandon, Carey Mulligan, and Aaron Johnson, and the former 007 plays a grieving father who takes in his son’s pregnant girlfriend after the boy dies in a car accident. Hollywood News joined a small group of reporters at the film’s Los Angeles press day to discuss his roles in front of the camera as well as behind the scenes; in addition to talking about the challenges of collaborating on a low-budget project like this one, Brosnan looked back at some of his favorite film roles, and talked about taking on different kinds of roles now that he’s said goodbye to Bond.
Hollywood News: Because this film is about these characters dealing with grief individually, how do you create an environment where everyone can collaborate but you’re able to sort of operate in scenes independent of one another?
Pierce Brosnan: I’m not sure I can answer that question, really. This was a four-week shoot with maybe four days of rehearsal prior, so everybody had to be on their game. You didn’t have much room to wiggle around and say let’s talk about it or let’s discuss it; you really had to be prepared. That’s the exhilarating part of making films like this, independent films, where you have four weeks, the budget is slim, the schedule is tight, and if the script is fighting fit and good, and it was, then you go shoot it and hopefully you have people and players who are prepared. You can’t work yourself up into the scene, you can say, well, I need three to five takes to get into the scene; scene one, first take, you’d better be there with the performance – and everybody was. It was fun, it was very concentrated; everybody supported Shana [Feste]. Shana, a young woman, she [directed] with maturity and great observation, and John Bailey was her […]
File this story under “Hopeful.”
Quoting a “reliable, proven source who’s broken numerous, since confirmed stories,” Cinema Blend’s Josh Tyler reports that Oscar winner Rachel Weisz is being considered for the role of QUANTUM’s leader for the next James Bond film, which will be directed by Sam Mendes.
That’s refreshing to hear the producers want someone of Weisz’s caliber to play the franchise’s villain, as opposed to handing her a tight-fitting cat suit and asking her to slum it as a traditional “Bond Girl.” Weisz is a fantastic actress who has, in previous interviews, joked about joining a franchise like Bond. And this new iteration of Bond films – with Daniel Craig in the lead role – have plenty of room for talented thespians, from Dame Judi Dench as M to the great Jeffrey Wright as Felix Leiter.
But choppy direction from Marc Forster doomed the latest Bond adventure, “Quantum of Solace,” so even if Weisz is cast (and she should be), it will be up to Mendes to streamline the material into a palatable dish. Like Forster, Mendes is a newcomer to action, so we’ll be anxious to see how he handles his film’s signature action scenes. Forster’s, sadly, were unwatchable. Mendes can only do better.
As for Weisz, Tyler emphasizes that his source says her involvement at this stage is “just rumor until it can be confirmed by a second, independent source,” and that “things can change in a heartbeat” with productions of this size and scope. Stick with us as news develops.
The as-yet-untitled “Bond 23″ is supposed to be in theaters on Nov. 18, 2011.
Get ready for more Lego Batman, Indiana Jones, Harry Potter, Star Wars and more. Warner Bros. has renewed its partnership with TT Games to continue making LEGO games through 2016.
According to reports, the video game franchise has already sold nearly 50 million units worldwide and remains very popular with family gamers.
“One of the things that sets the LEGO brand apart is that it allows kids to express their creativity,” says Henrik Taudorf Lorensen, vice president of LEGO Digital. “We are very excited to continue to work with TT Games because they take a distinctive approach to making games creative, social and non-violent, which makes them a valuable part of the broader LEGO experience.”
LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 will be out later this year. Other characters I’d love to see in LEGO form include Superman, Spider-Man, James Bond and the stars of the Star Trek universe. Make it happen, TT Games!