July 11, 2015

Tag Archives: Paul Rudd

TRAILER PARK: New clips for “How Do You Know,” “Dagenham”

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: A lot of new regarding potentially engaging fall pictures hitting the Hollywood News radar this morning. This post offers up two trailers which are worth a look.
The trailer for James L. Brooks’ “How Do You Know” played before my “Eat, Pray, Love” screening this week, so it’s no surprise to learn it has made its way online. (Yahoo Movies as a pristine copy of the clip, so click here to view for yourself.)
In the film, Reese Witherspoon plays a headstrong D.C. gal torn between the jerk she’s currently dating (Owen Wilson) and the sweet lunk who’s interested in her affections (Paul Rudd).
The trailer captures perfectly what each actor brings to a project: Witherspoon’s beauty and command, Wilson’s casual humor and edge, Rudd’s smarmy appeal. What it doesn’t solidify, however, is whether this is closer to “Terms of Endearment” and “As Good As it Gets” or “Spanglish.” The editing is a little drawn out, the doorman gets the biggest laugh, and Witherspoon wears the same off-the-shoulder blue sweater in every scene. I can’t figure that out. Anyway, “How Do You Know” opens Dec. 17.
And then there’s “Made in Dagenham,” a British drama from Nigel Cole, who directed Helen Mirren and Julie Walters through “Calendar Girls.” Based on true events, “Dagenham” tells of a labor strike during the late 1960s, where female workers at the Ford Dagenham car plant protested against sexual discrimination.
Could be “Norma Rae,” or could be “The Full Monty.” The trailer is loaded with dependable Brits, from Miranda Richardson and Rosamund Pike to Sally Hawkins and Bob Hoskins. “Dagenham” will be at Toronto ahead of a planned Nov. 19 release date in the States.
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Reese Witherspoon will croon as Peggy Lee

HollywoodNews.com: After catching the music icon bug on “Walk the Line,” Oscar winner Reese Witherspoon is in talks to headline a Peggy Lee biopic to be written and directed by Nora Ephron.
Witherspoon scooped up the rights to Lee’s story from her estate. Variety says that Witherspoon met with Lee’s granddaughter Holly Foster-Wells.
Witherspoon plans to produce with Marc Platt.
The actress sought out Ephron, who happened to be a fan of Lee.
Lee’s career lasted seven decades. Variety writes:
She rose to prominence during the big band era and had her first hit, “Somebody Else is Taking My Place,” in 1941. She recorded a series of hit albums and songs, including “Fever” and “Is That All There Is?” during the next 30 years. She’s regarded as one of the most influential jazz vocalists of all time.
Lee also was a prolific songwriter. She penned a number of songs and voiced several characters in Disney’s 1955 animated hit “Lady in the Tramp.” In the early 1990s, Lee won a landmark case against the Mouse House for royalties from homevid sales of the pic.
Her career extended to television and the bigscreen, where her credits included the 1952 redo of “The Jazz Singer” and “Pete Kelly’s Blues.”

Witherspoon’s next film is the James L. Brooks drama-edy “How Do You Know?” opposite Paul Rudd which will bow in December. She will star alongside Robert Pattinson and Christoph Waltz in “Water for Elephants” slated for April.
Photo Credit: WP Content
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‘Anchorman 2′ not greenlit due to actors’ paychecks

HollywoodNews.com: If you’re scratching your head wondering why “Anchorman 2” was never greenlit at Paramount, it’s because the actors’ salaries would have been through the roof.
In talking to Collider, Will Ferrell revealed “If you’re getting myself, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd and probably a bunch of other people who would line up to be in that movie, it’s going to cost a certain amount.
“We were basically begged to for years and years, like, ‘Would you guys ever do a sequel? Would you ever do a sequel?’ We warmed up to the idea and we were like, ‘That could actually be a lot of fun’.”
He added: “And we got everyone together and then they were basically like, ‘Great! We can’t believe it! But you have to do it for this amount’. And we were like, ‘Oh, well there’s no way we can do it for that’. Right now the ball is in their court.”
Despite Ferrell’s inside info, Digital Spy reminds us of Adam McKay’s quote on Twitter: “So bummed. Paramount basically passed on Anchorman 2. Even after we cut our budget down. We tried.”
Photo Credit: DreamWorks
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This Week In Movies – ‘Dinner For Schmucks,’ ‘Get Low’

By Pete Hammond
HollywoodNews.com: Although boxoffice was up compared to this week a year ago and Christopher Nolan’s remarkable “Inception” remains the number one movie for the third week in a row with an estimated $27 million and only a 36% drop week to week, it does seem like the dog days of August are upon us already even though the last month of the summer moviegoing season just officially started on Sunday. “Dinner For Schmucks”, a so-so remake of a so-so French comedy fortunately stars likeable Steve Carell and likeable Paul Rudd so it was able to almost reach $24 million this weekend becoming the only good news among wide openers. People are starved for comedy so it performed better than it had any right to. Zac Efron who was described by some panting middle-aged female reviewers on Friday anywhere from “dreamy” to “swoony” managed to open his new drama, “Charlie St. Cloud” that day to an estimated $5.6 million thanks to what the industry is referring to “frontloading” from his young fans who then proceeded to abandon it in droves on Saturday when it dropped a horrendous 30+ % . OUCH. With just about $12 mil for the 3-day period this weakly reviewed spiritual opus is already hurting , although not as much as Warner Bros. “Cats and Dogs: The Revenge Of Kitty Galore,” the nine–years-in-gestation sequel to “Cats And Dogs” which drew an abysmal 15% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and also about $12 million for the weekend despite being on 1000 more screens than Zac. Its Cinemascore of only B- does not bode well for good word of mouth either for this bow wow of a bow.

Perhaps the most impressive performer of the weekend was Robert Duvall’s best-reviewed lead performance since “The Apostle” in the quirky comedy/drama “Get Low” which Sony Pictures Classics opened on a limited basis in LA and NY to a very strong estimate of nearly $23,000 per on 4 screens. Duvall and co-star Sissy Spacek who each have an Oscar and six nominations appeared on Wednesday for a Screen Actors Guild screening at the Landmark in Los Angeles which was so packed people had to line the aisles just to get a spot in the theatre. Duvall admitted he never thought the movie (which was in development for eight years) would ever really get made but is now delighted to have […]

‘Inception’ three-peats as ‘Dinner For Schmucks’ opens well, but ‘Cats and Dogs 2′ tanks

By Steve Mendelson
Hollywoodnews.com: ‘Inception’ was number one for the third straight weekend, as it fended off three challengers and neared the $200 million mark. Dropping just 35%, the Chris Nolan thriller grossed another $27.5 million for a new total of $193 million. It will likely cross the $200 million mark on Tuesday, its nineteenth day of release. By Wednesday, it will surpass the $205 million gross of ‘Batman Begins’ to become Nolan’s second-highest grossing domestic grosser, behind the $533 million earned by ‘The Dark Knight.’ At this point, ‘Inception’ is having a slightly leggier run than ‘Star Trek,’ with smaller drops to compensate for a lower opening weekend (it too ended weekend three with $191 million). So it would appear that the audience-pleasing mind-bender should finished between $260-300 million, depending on how well it handles the direct demo competition in the next few weekends. Ironically, it will lose at least some of its IMAX screens a little earlier than expected, as ‘Avatar’ has a planned re-release on August 27th in IMAX and 3-D theaters. There’s not really much more to say aside from repeating the fact that the film has already recouped its budget in domestic numbers and is slowly expanding overseas (it’s worldwide total is now $363 million).
The big new release was Paramount’s ‘Dinner For Schmucks,’ which had an unusually low screen count of just 2,911 screens. While the reviews were decidedly mixed and the marketing was almost low-key, the picture still proved the drawing power of Steve Carell and/or Paul Rudd, as the film opened with $23.3 million anyway. This remake, of a French comedy, underwent a bit of a makeover following disappointing test screenings, apparently to add more heart and compassion to an inherently mean-spirited story. We won’t know whether the changes had an effect until next weekend (opening weekends are about marketing, second weekends are about audience reaction), but my dad didn’t care for it one bit (‘a movie for schmucks’). Regardless, this proves that star power is not completely dead, as pretty much anyone who saw this went because of one of the big names involved (I’m sure the appearance of Zach Galifianakis didn’t hurt).Regardless, the film cost a somewhat reasonable $69 million (remember when only big-budget action films cost more than $50 million?), but it’s probably going to get hammered next weekend, when the all-star (Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Samuel L. […]

Steve Carell is the “Hollywood Movie Star of the Week”

By Anthony D’Alessandro
HollywoodNews.com: It’s been said that death is easier than comedy; however, Steve Carell wears the genre as feasibly as a glove. Some of the best comedic actors make a living by portraying offbeat characters; however, some of the better clowns can segue between the straight man and wacky guy with ease. Carell is in the latter category.
Earlier this year, as a suburban father/husband, Carell weathered urban shenanigans with Tina Fey in ‘Date Night.’ On the other side of the spectrum, Carell voiced the character for Gru, a sinister Russian-sounding villain with a heart of gold in the hit animated comedy ‘Despicable Me.’

And Carell doesn’t just excel at his craft, but remains a bankable actor as well, evident in the budding box office returns for his latest laugh entry ‘Dinner for Schmucks.’ This year alone, Carell’s three films, ‘Date Night,’ ‘Despicable Me’ and the Friday sales from ‘Schmucks,’ have raked in over $350 million worldwide.
In ‘Schmucks’ Carell plays Barry, a loveable goof who is amazed by the simple. Barry possesses an absurd skill for recreating famed paintings from stuffed dead mice. Though he’s the butt of Tim’s (Paul Rudd) prank, a guest for a dinner of schmucks that his boss is hosting. Barry’s sincerity awakens Tim to his own shortcomings. Yet, the best moments in ‘Schmucks’ are Carell’s scenes with fellow zany man Zach Galifianakis, who plays a crazed mind-controller, hysterical sequences which come off like Bob Newhart and Andy Kaufman playing an aggressive game of kick the can.

For his ability to always make audiences laugh as well as his down-to-earth likeability, it is our honor to crown Steve Carell the Hollywood Star of the Week.
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Hollywood Movie Roundup: ‘Schmucks’ looks to kick ‘Inception’ auds awake

HollywoodNews.com: Three films are attempting to stir moviegoers to the fact that there are other films at the multiplex other than the blockbuster “Inception.”
Paramount bows Jay Roach’s “Dinner for Schmucks” starring Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and Zach Galifianakis – a much needed comedy in a summer that has only touted two to date: “Get Him to the Greek” and Adam Sandler’s “Grown Ups.”
Those looking for laughs have allegedly shelled out $10 million to “Schmucks” on Friday night, putting the film ahead of “Inception” which made close to $8 million. However, when Sunday comes, it looks like both films could have a photo finish for No. 1.
Critics have been split on the comedy which is a remake of the 1998 French Film “The Dinner Game” directed by Francis Veber.
“Schmucks” follows a budding finance executive played by Rudd who in order to peg his way up the corporate ladder must attend a dinner hosted by his boss. The demands of the event require that each guest bring an idiotic person with him. Rudd’s character Tim befriends Barry (Carell), an earnest, but aloof guy who recreates famed paintings with dead mice.
Rotten Tomatoes critics are split on “Schmucks” with a 52% score. The Boston Globe’s Ty Burr serves up an even take: “A number of bits don’t work, some of the characters wear out their welcome, but the whole suckers you into an agreeable state of idiot bliss.”

Also vying to take a bite out of the box office is Universal’s Zac Efron weepy romancer “Charlie St. Cloud.” Efron plays Charlie, a guy so overridden with grief from the death of his younger brother, he takes a job at the cemetery where the body resides. As Charlie connects with the ghost of his brother, he also falls in love with a girl and must choose between the two. “Charlie St. Cloud” has a low 24% score on the Tomatometer with such critics like the Hollywood Reporter’s Kirk Honeycutt blasting “An unstable mix of youth romance, metaphysical idealism and tropes that seemingly belong in a horror film.”
In early estimates, “Charlie St. Cloud” made just over $5 million Friday. Kate Basinger co-stars.
Warner Bros.’ kid pic “Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore” enters a crowded family market with an estimated $4.3 million Friday and a low Tomatometer rating of 13%. To its advantage ultimately is the […]

REVIEW: Saggy main course almost dooms “Dinner for Schmucks”

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Dinner for Schmucks (**1/2 out of 4 stars)
Jay Roach’s “Dinner for Schmucks” starts strong. It even ends strong. It’s that saggy, aimless middle section that might leave an unsatisfied taste in your mouth.
The cringe comedy tears out of the gate riding a stream of consistent, uproarious laughs as it establishes its premise, which Roach lifted from Francis Veber’s French comedy “Le Diner de Cons,” which he admires. Paul Rudd plays Tim, a ladder-climbing financial analyst with a gorgeous girlfriend (Stephanie Szostak) and realistic dreams of graduating from his company’s sixth floor (where the minions grumble) to the seventh (where the elite rub elbows).
To get there, Tim must participate in his boss’s cruel game: Find a fool and bring him or her to dinner so the supposedly superior can chuckle at their misfortunes. Initially Tim balks, believing the practice to be, as he says, “messed up.” But the game changes once he runs, literally, into Barry (Steve Carell), a clueless dweeb with a passion for taxidermy — resulting in the film’s funniest running joke — but a lack of social aptitude or a verbal filter.
Carell’s presence usually enhances the comedic potential in a situation. Not so with “Schmucks.” The actor’s approach to Barry is so bizarre, so off-the-rails, it sufficiently separates Tim’s predicament from the tiny corner of reality it once occupied.
There is a dichotomy in “Schmucks” that bears exploring. Tim believes Barry is his ticket to a better life. Of course, the longer Tim lingers in Barry’s presence, the more destruction — both personal and physical — this senseless stranger creates.
And yet, as Barry throws out Tim’s back, scares off his girlfriend, invites a lingering stalker (Lucy Punch) into the mix, and tosses him to the IRS for an unfortunate audit, we find ourselves wondering if anyone — even someone who is supposed to be an idiot — would behave this way. Roach sets up a scene where Punch chases Carell around Rudd’s apartment. She’s obsessed with Tim, and wants to make him jealous by pretending to sexually spank Barry. Before long, she is throwing wine bottles at Barry’s head, shattering glass shelves and picture frames. Carell disrupts her amorous charge by playing dead, and Punch simply walks out. The scene works up a good deal of energy before going nowhere.
A number of scenes in “Schmucks” follow the same template, […]

Interview: “Dinner for Schmucks” director Jay Roach on Steve Carell, Paul Rudd and Sacha Baron Cohen

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Don’t call it a remake.
Yes, Jay Roach’s latest comedy “Dinner for Schmucks,” which opens this Friday, drops Steve Carell and Paul Rudd into hilariously uncomfortable situations that are reminiscent of French director Francis Veber’s 1998 comedy, “The Dinner Game.”
But Roach, who recently spoke with Hollywood News about the production, was quick to point out that they moved away from the “Dinner Game” premise to weave their own, unique joke.
The film stars Rudd as a ladder-climbing corporate executive who is asked to invite an idiot to a strange dinner-party game. He thinks he discovers a slam-dunk dork in Carell. Then, however, Roach says their film goes down several different avenues as it distances itself from Veber’s film, which he considers a masterpiece.
“Our film starts with that premise. It’s inspired by (the original movie). But the entire third act was not part of the original French film. It’s a great film. I am a huge fan of Veber. But we went with ‘Inspired by’ instead of ‘Based on’ because I felt we couldn’t beat his jokes. And though we borrow the concept of the story, basically none of the jokes are the same,” Roach said.
For Roach, it’s always a learning process. In addition to directing Myers through the “Austin Powers” films, he helmed two “Meet the Parents” films and served as a producer for Sacha Baron Cohen’s outrageous “Borat” and “Bruno” comedies.
“His comedy is so specific, and he is so amazing at it,” Roach said of Cohen. “I’ve never seen an audience laugh harder than they laughed at ‘Borat.’ I can remember, literally, just looking around at the audience during that naked fight sequence and going, ‘Oh my God, I will never direct anything that has people flopping around in their seats as hard as they are right now.’
“So I learned from those experiences that he is a master,” Roach continued. “I was a producer on those films, and I helped with the post process where we screened it over and over and kept finding the film with the interactions with the audience. I think I evolved through that.”
Audiences will find out how far Roach’s comedy styles have evolved when “Dinner for Schmucks” opens in theaters Friday, July 30.
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Steve Carell’s ‘Dinner for Schmucks’ shows exactly why he’s meant to be a movie star

By Roger Friedman
HollywoodNews.com: Steve Carell is so startlingly good in Jay Roach’s hilarious “Dinner for Schmucks” you can see why he’s ready to leave “The Office.”
“I do think it’s time,” Carell told me last night at the Schmucks party at the aka Boom Boom Room atop the Standard Hotel. The cool event followed a socko premiere screening at the Ziegfeld. He’s right, too: better to leave on top.
Carell also said he’s looking forward to seeing Amy Ryan when “The Office” resumes shooting next month for his seventh and last season. Ryan, who plays Holly, his sometime love interest, will (presumably) help usher Carell’s Michael Scott out the door.
After seeing “Shmucks,” you know it’s time for Carell to leave “The Office” to others. He’s a movie star.
In the film, he plays a kind of savant who makes dioramas using dead mice in costumes. This is considered so weird,and his character is so odd, that Paul Rudd wants to bring him to a dinner for idiots his boss (the as usual terrific Bruce Greenwood) organizes for the upper echelon of his company. Everyone has to bring a fascinating idiot whom the diners can mock.
If this sounds like an odd premise, it is: the first 20 minutes of the movie, including the setup, are funny but weird. And then Roach settles down to tell what is really a story with a lot of heart and soul. And laughs, Lots of laughs. When you realize Carell’s Barry is no idiot at all, the film kicks in. Carell’s performance is his most nuanced ever.
I told him Barry reminded me a little of Jerry Lewis from his early films.
“Jerry Lewis?” he countered. “I didn’t know I was channeling him!”
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