William Shatner’s ‘Christmas Horror Story’ Lands At RLJ Entertainment

RLJ Entertainment has nabbed all U.S. rights to A Christmas Horror Story, a holiday chiller starring William Shatner. The film, directed by Steven Hoban (Darknet), Grant Harvey (She Made Me Do It) and Brett Sullivan (Ginger Snaps 2: Unleashed), debuts July 20 at Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival.

Mark Ward, RLJ’s chief acquisitions officer, describes the film as “a scary twist to the traditional Christmas tale,” with Shatner sharing the screen with “horribly fantastic creatures.” RLJ acquired the rights under its Image Entertainment brand. Christmas, which also stars George Buza, is a spin on the Nordic legend of Krampus, an evil anti-Santa here tormenting a family for the holidays. The film also promises zombie elves.

A Christmas Horror Story was produced by Copperheart Entertainment’s Steve Hoban and Mark Smith and exec produced by David Hayter. RLJ’s Ward negotiated the deal with Paradigm Talent Agency on behalf of the filmmakers.


Investors Explore Sale Of Miramax Sale For As Much As $1B: Report

The investor group that controls Miramax is looking to put the company up for sale, according to Bloomberg. Miramax’s 700-odd movie library includes Oscar winners Shakespeare in Love, The English Patient, Pulp Fiction and other distinctive titles that might fetch as much as $1 billion, sources told the news service. A separate source contacted by Deadline confirmed that Miramax has been talking with banks about a sale, but discussions are as yet only preliminary.

The $1 billion price tag also may be over-ambitious. Disney sold Miramax for $660 million in 2010 to a group of investors including Colony Capital, which is controlled by Thomas Barrack Jr., Qatar Holdings and Ron Tutor, who later sold his stake to Qatar.

At the time of the sale, Miramax had roughly $300 million in cash receivables. The problem is that Miramax is running out of titles to license, so there’s little new value unless it makes new films.

Under current management, Miramax has become a bit more active in production, acquisition and distribution to bolster the library. That strategy included a deal with The Weinstein Company to further monetize the library with additional movies, TV shows and stage productions.

After they sold Miramax to Disney in 1993, founders Harvey Weinstein and Bob Weinstein and departed in 2005 after falling out with studio management. The brothers subsequently launched The Weinstein Company.

Miramax’s latest release is Mr. Holmes, which stars Sir Ian McKellen as an elder version of the iconic detective and opened today. Miramax also produces the TV series From Dusk Till Dawn based on Robert Rodriguez’s 1996 vampire movie. That series is entering its sophomore season on the El Rey cable network, a joint venture between Rodriguez and Univision.


Jennifer Lawrence Is Open to More ‘X-Men’ Sequels

Back in April, a report surfaced that claimed director Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Apocalypse will bring the entire franchise to a close, which started with the filmmaker’s 2000 blockbuster X-Men. The fate of this franchise has not been set in stone quite yet, but projects like Deadpool, Gambit and Wolverine 3 will also be connected to the franchise in some ways. While we wait to find out what will happen with the X-Men franchise after X-Men: Apocalypse, actress Jennifer Lawrence revealed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that she is holding out hope to play Mystique once again.

“There is hope. I don’t want to not be asked.”

X-Men: Apocalypse is set in the year 1983, 10 years after the events of X-Men: Days of Future Past, which set up a whole new present-day timeline for the franchise. It isn’t known if X-Men: Apocalypse will connect to this new timeline after the time-travelling events of X-Men: Days of Future Past, or how Jennifer Lawrence‘s Mystique would fit into any stories that take place in the present. Of course, it’s always possible that 20th Century Fox could put a Mystique spinoff movie into development, set between 1983 and the present day timeline, but that is only speculation at this point.

It’s worth noting that another rumor surfaced that the studio wants Bryan Singer to direct The Fantastic Four 2, which already has a June 9, 2017 release date set by 20th Century Fox. According to this unconfirmed report, the sequel will help set up an impending X-Men and Fantastic Four crossover. Producer Simon Kinberg wouldn’t clarify on any future plans for the franchise, stating he just wants to make sure X-Men: Apocalypse is done right.

“I just wanna finish this movie and then figure out the next one. But I do think about the next chapters of these stories. My hope is we can bring these guys back. And if we didn’t then I would adjust.”

It isn’t known if any of the new mutants introduced in X-Men: Apocalypse, such as Lana Condor (Jubilee), Sophie Turner (Jean Grey), Tye Sheridan (Cyclops), Alexandra Shipp (Storm) and Kodi Smit-McPhee (Nightcrawler) will return for future sequels, but it certainly seems possible, depending on how X-Men: Apocalypse plays out. It’s possible that the studio could try to create a cinematic universe with X-Men: Apocalypse stars along with Deadpool and Gambit, but we already know that Hugh Jackman is planning on stepping away from his beloved Logan character after Wolverine 3.

Would you like to see Jennifer Lawrence keep playing Mystique after X-Men: Apocalypse? If the movie is as big of a hit as X-Men: Days of Future Past was, that may pave the way for a spinoff or another series of movies. But the studio is keeping mum on their plans, for now. Hopefully we’ll find out more about this potential cinematic universe as we get closer to X-Men: Apocalypse’s release on May 27, 2016.

X-Men: Apocalypse comes to theaters May 27th, 2016.


How Do ‘Ant-Man’ Post-Credit Scenes Connect to ‘Captain America Civil War’?

Any Marvel fan worth his or her salt knows that you shouldn’t leave the theater immediately when the credits start rolling, because there will be at least one additional scene that pops up after the movie appears to be over. And sometimes there are even two scene. Avengers: Age of Ultron only had one such scene, which essentially set up Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 and Avengers: Infinity War Part 2. The villainous Thanos (Josh Brolin) is seen picking up the Infinity Gauntlet, stating he will take care of things (i.e. collect the Infinity Stones) himself. While fans weren’t treated to a second scene in that movie, this weekend’s Ant-Man features two fantastic credit cookies, both of which help set up the future of the MCU in different ways. There will be SPOILERS for Ant-Man below, so read on at your own risk.

Last month, producer Kevin Feige confirmed that Janet Van Dyne, a.k.a. The Wasp, is featured in a brief flashback sequence in Ant-Man. In the comics, both Janet and her husband Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) were founding members of The Avengers, but that isn’t exactly the case in this movie, where the Avengers are already assembled. Throughout most of the movie, Hank’s semi-estranged daughter Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) resents her father for choosing a criminal like Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) to don his precious Ant-Man suit, even though she is clearly more capable of handling the technology. And fans watching the movie will question Hank’s motives as well. Towards the end of the film, Hank comes clean, admitting to Hope that he didn’t want to put her in the Ant-Man suit because he lost his wife, her mother Janet, on a mission where she was wearing the Wasp suit.

The first end credits scene features Hank showing Hope a secret chamber that houses a new Wasp suit that both Hank and Janet were designing for Hope, before Janet passed. Hope smiles and says, “It’s about time,” as the scene comes to an end. This teases that Evangeline Lilly, who has been contracted for multiple Marvel movies, could certainly return as The Wasp. Of course, this would be a departure from the comics, where Hope eventually turns into the villainous Red Queen, but it surely wouldn’t be the first time the studio strayed from the source material. We don’t know when exactly Hope will suit up as Wasp, but we know Paul Rudd‘s Scott Lang will be featured in Captain America: Civil War, so perhaps she could show up to give Scott a hand.

The second scene has a direct link to Captain America: Civil War, and helps set up why Scott Lang will be a part of this massive superhero adaptation. Ever since the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Captain America (Chris Evans) and his new running buddy Sam Wilson, a.k.a. Falcon (Anthony Mackie) have been trying to track down The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan). Sam even makes a brief mention of his “missing persons case” during the party scene in Avengers: Age of Ultron. This second end credits scene shows that Cap and Falcon have in fact found The Winter Soldier, but he is in quite the bind, literally.

While it isn’t clear where The Winter Soldier is found, he’s seen caught in some sort of a vice contraption, which is clamped down over his metal arm. This is only speculation, but it’s possible that The Winter Soldier is starting to become Bucky again, and he wanted to remove this infernal metal limb himself, to no avail. For reasons unknown, Cap says they can’t call the rest of the Avengers to help break Bucky free, when Falcon says “I know a guy.” The guy he’s referring to is, in fact, Scott Lang. Earlier in the movie, while Hank, Scott and the rest of his crew are preparing for their main heist, Scott is tasked with breaking in to what he thought was a warehouse, which has now been turned into the new Avengers facility, where he has an unexpected run-in with Falcon. An amusing battle ensues before Scott’s tiny self manages to evade capture by the Falcon, a scene that comes full circle in this second end credits scene.

When Captain America: Civil War started filming a few months ago, many were surprised that Paul Rudd was confirmed to star. Producer Kevin Feige confirmed to /Film that a version of this scene will be featured in Captain America: Civil War, perfectly setting up Scott Lang’s introduction to, at least, Captain America, and presumably the rest of the Avengers, perhaps after he helps Cap and Falcon bring The Winter Soldier in. What do you think about the Ant-Man end credits scenes? Is there anything else you noticed that we may have missed?

Ant-Man comes to theaters July 17th, 2015.


‘Suicide Squad’ Audition Sparked a Fury in Cara Delevingne

Director David Ayer and his Suicide Squad cast took a break from filming in Toronto last week to make a surprise appearance at Comic-Con, where they showed fans the first trailer. It will likely be quite some time before we see more footage, but an extensive profile of star Cara Delevingne in Time gives us a unique glimpse into her audition process with David Ayer. Since the film’s script wasn’t written yet, the director asked her to read as Martha in a scene from Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? But he made her read the part in so many different ways that it infuriated the actress. Here’s what she had to say below.

“I was like, ‘Honestly, if I go outside and punch people, you’ve got to come get me out of jail because I am so furious.’ He sparked a f—ing fury in me.”

Of course, it all worked out in the end, as she landed the role of Enchantress, which is still shrouded in mystery. While a slew of video and photos have surfaced from the set since production started in April, we have only seen this character in the official Suicide Squad cast photo from May, and in two brief scenes from the trailer. One before her “transformation” and another after. She becomes Enchantress after encountering a demon that possesses her and gives her incredible powers, while exploring Terror Castle. Despite the rigorous audition process, the actress revealed that the movie will be “freakin’ awesome.”

“[It] is going to be freakin’ awesome. I kill people with my bare hands.”

As for how she fits into the Squad itself, we have only unconfirmed rumors to go on for now. One of the rumors is that Enchantress is handed over to Lex Luthor by human traffickers, as part of a deal where Luthor is trying to obtain “bio-weaponry.” The deal never gets made, though, since the Suicide Squad intervenes and delivers Enchantress to Amanda Waller (Viola Davis). Waller reportedly keeps her in a hidden area of the jail reserved for “freaks” like her and King Shark, but, naturally, none of these details have been confirmed.

It seems likely that the audition process Cara Delevingne went through was meant to test her level of rage, but it isn’t clear how that will manifest in the film itself. There was another rumor that claimed Enchantress plays a big part in the prison riot scene at the end of the film, and that her character is incredibly powerful. Hopefully the next trailer teases some of the powers we can expect from this unique character, but with production still ongoing, it remains unclear when we might get the next glimpse of footage.

Will Smith (Deadshot), Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn), Jai Courtney (Boomerang), Jared Leto (The Joker) and Joel Kinnaman (Rick Flagg) also star in Suicide Squad. Ben Affleck is also reprising his role as Batman from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and we’ve already seen him taking a ride atop The Joker’s car in footage from the set and the first trailer. What do you think about Cara Delevingne’s Suicide Squad audition?

Suicide Squad comes to theaters August 5th, 2016.


‘Some Kind Of Beautiful’ Trailer – Pierce Brosnan’s Charming Mid Life Crisis

It’s been a while since we’ve seen a straightforward romantic comedy, but it appears that Some Kind Of Beautiful (known in England as How To Make Love To An Englishman) is aiming squarely for the center of the genre. Pierce Brosnan stars as a Trinity College poetry professor and profligate bachelor who gives up his promiscuous lifestyle after his much younger girlfriend (Jessica Alba) becomes pregnant. When, three years later, she leaves him for another man, she sends her sister (Salma Hayek) to make sure that he hasn’t reverted to his old ways while caring for their child. Unsurprisingly, romance ensues. Directed by Tom Vaughan, Some Kind Of Beautiful starts an exclusive DirecTV VOD run on July 23, followed by theatrical release August 21.


Alana De La Garza & Annie Funke Join ‘Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders’

Alana De La Garza and Annie Funke have booked series regular roles opposite Gary Sinise in CBS’ Criminal Minds planted offshoot Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders.

Like Criminal Minds, which centers on the FBI’s Analysis Unit, Beyond Borders focuses on a division of the FBI. It follows agents helping American citizens who find themselves in trouble abroad.

RelatedCBS Fall 2015 Schedule: ‘Supergirl’ Opens Monday, ‘Life In Pieces’ Follows ‘Big Bang’

SDB Partners-repped De La Garza will play Clara, a smart, well-traveled cultural anthropologist on the International Response Team. Funke, repped by Brookside Artist Management, is Mae, the team’s medical examiner who is fearless and fun. In addition to Sinise, they join previously cast Tyler James Williams and Daniel Henney. De La Garza played the female lead on ABC’s Forever and also is set as a recurring on CBS’ Scorpion. Funke’s credits include features A Most Violent Year and The Intern and Showtime’s The Affair.

Erica Messer, Mark Gordon and Nick Pepper executive produce. Like the original series, Beyond Borders hails from ABC Studios, CBS TV Studios and the Mark Gordon Co.


‘Batman v Superman’ IMAX Trailer Goes Straight to the Action

Hope you’re not tired of watching the new Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer that was released at Comic-Con last Saturday. We’re nearly a week out, and a brand-new version of the trailer has arrived, recut for theaters. This latest sneak peek doesn’t give us any new footage. In fact, it is one minute and 10 seconds shorter than what we’ve already seen. But that doesn’t mean it’s better or worse either way.

Some claim that this reworked Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer has a ‘snippet’ of new Wonder Woman footage, but it will take an eagle-eyed viewer to point it out. While the two big money shots of the superhero remain intact, one quick glimpse of Princess Diana of Themyscira in her civilian dress, arriving at a party, has been cut for time. Quite a bit has been cut from the footage, actually, while certain bits of dialogue have been used in different places. Overall, it doesn’t change the tone of what director Zack Snyder is trying to convey.

Gone is a shot of a topless Ben Affleck pulling an old tire across the floor of a hallowed out Wayne Manor as he trains for his big fight against Kal-El. Jeremy Irons still appears as Alfred the Butler, but his speech to Bruce is slightly tweaked, and used just a little bit differently. We no longer see Bruce and a group of mourners carrying caskets to the Wayne Mortuarium. Most importantly, while we still see the newspaper that many believe The Joker sent to Batman, claiming the millionaire let his family die, the iconic shot of Robin’s costume, sprawled with Joker graffiti has been excised. That comes as a pretty big cut.

Also getting a bit of a tweak is the relationship between Jesse Eisenberg‘s Lex Luthor and Holly Hunter‘s senator. His speech about Devils coming from the sky is used over slightly modified footage. The fact that someone has entered Lex Corp. to fire off quite a few rounds, deflating the villain’s beloved basketball arrives earlier than before. And we see that Lex is quite fond of his motorcycle. Moments that were included in the Comic-Con cut, sure, but they are more pronounced, and seem more important here.

There is also one key scene of Batman fighting a group of men that is missing. Does it do anything to change how awesome the trailer is? Well, yes, if you’ve seen the longer version first. It will definitely feel like something is missing. But theaters have been lobbying for shorter trailers, and the original’s runtime of three minutes and twenty seconds doesn’t fit within industry standards. While we don’t really get to see anything new at all, it does leave us with a slightly different outlook. Which isn’t good or bad. You can watch the new Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice theatrical trailer here, followed by the original extended cut. Which one do you like best? Can you spot any differences that we missed?

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice comes to theaters March 25th, 2016.