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Note To Glenn Close, Hugh Jackman, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Rupert Grint: Broadway’s Not A Whistle Stop

The most shocking stage news of the week was that Angela Lansbury is getting her Noel Coward act together and taking it on the road. Having filled theaters on Broadway and the West End over the decades, the soon-to-turn-89-year-old will re-create her role as Mme. Arcati in Blithe Spirit, beginning December 9 at the Ahmanson Theatre in LA and ending in March on the other side of the continent at the National Theatre in Washington. She’s been playing the eccentric spirit guide off and on since a 2009 Broadway revival.

Hugh Jackman The River Sunday PageTalk about bucking the trend. In ye olde olden days, a star like Mary Martin or Ethel Merman might stay with a show for two years and more – first on Broadway, then in London, then on the road in the U.S. That tradition is gone with Sunshine Raisin Biscuits.

Image (3) GerardColumn_badge__140512224655-150x150.png for post 735293With the new season building up steam, Times Square soon will be awash in big-name stars with commitment issues. (Apparently, no amount of disrespect from the Tony nominating committee can keep them away.) The three most popular words in the Broadway lexicon these days are “Strictly Limited Run.” And the economic model is the extremely non-artsy-fartsy double-punch of scarcity marketing and “dynamic pricing.” Translation: Tell the consumer your product will be gone in a flash and then hike prices as they walk through the door and amble over to the box office.

GLENNCLOSESo: There are 17 shows opening in the coming weeks. “Big stars are not just back on Broadway this season,” wrote critic Linda Winer in Newsday. “They are its biggest news.”

Michael Cera is making his Broadway debut in This Is Our Youth. You have about 12 weeks left to catch him. On Halloween, Hugh Jackman, the biggest star Broadway has produced in a generation, opens in Jez Butterworth’s The River at the Circle In The Square — with under 800 seats, one of Broadway’s smallest houses — for 13 weeks. That’s about 83,200 people, many of them likely to pay $1,000 or more to impress a date. Even when he doesn’t sing, Wolverine goes clean, as they say in the business.

BRADCOOPERA week later, Bradley Cooper begins performances in a revival of Bernard Pomerance’s The Elephant Man. This one’s at the Booth, a beautiful, intimate theater with 766 seats. You have 14 weeks to see him. Beginning this month, Glenn Close and John Lithgow will headline a revival of Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance, the cast superbly rounded out by the evanescent Lindsay Duncan, Claire Higgins, Bob Balaban and Martha Plimpton. They’re here for four-and-a-half months, including previews.

Two star-packed comedy revivals – Terrence McNally’s It’s Only A Play and George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart’s You Can’t Take It With You – are running for 18 and 17 weeks, respectively. Tickets to the McNally show have been going faster than they can print them, for people willing to bet top dollar on a cast that includes Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Stockard Channing, F. Murray Abraham, Megan Mullally and, in his Broadway debut, Harry Potter alum Rupert Grint. Not to be outdone, the Kaufman and Hart chestnut has James Earl Jones, Rose Byrne (a few blocks away from her Damages pal Close), Elizabeth Ashley and too many others to count.

"Frank" New York PremiereThe Roundabout Theatre  Company revival of Tom Stoppard’s The Real Thing has Maggie Gyllenhaal for 14 weeks including previews. (Brother Jake will also be on Broadway this season, in Constellations, courtesy of the Manhattan Theatre Club.) The door is revolving practically nonstop with stars for the revival of A.R. Gurney’s Love Letters, which just opened to glowing notices for Mia Farrow and Brian Dennehy. With couples committing to just 31 to 43 performances, the roster includes Carol Burnett, Diana Rigg, Alan Alda, Martin Sheen, Stacy Keach and Anjelica Huston. Blink and they’re gone.

The roster grows after the New Year, with two more acclaimed London imports: Helen Mirren in The Audience and Bill Nighy and Carey Mulligan in Skylight, both for strictly limited runs.

This is a very good deal for the stars, who only have to sign on for a few months and walk away with a not inconsiderable amount of cash (two years ago, Al Pacino earned $1.25 million during a 10-week run of Glengarry Glen Ross; Tom Hanks earned $150,000 for each of the 15 weeks he headlined Lucky Guy, not shabby for an actor making his Broadway debut).

And it’s a great deal for Broadway’s landlords, who have sexy bold-face names on their marquees and outta-sight rental income in the till as customers pay through the nose for seats, the frenzy rising as that final curtain approaches.

BILLNIGHY“Broadway is all about creating have-to-be-there live experiences,” says Jordan Roth, president of Jujamcyn Theaters, of whose five Broadway houses, four are booked with with non-star-driven, long-running shows including The Book Of Mormon, Kinky Boots, A Gentleman’s Guide To Love & Murder and Jersey Boys. “A great star live on stage is certainly one way to create that, as is a unique director’s vision or author’s voice.”

Is it good for Broadway? Yes. I mean, No. Well, of course it depends on your point of view. Typically, hit shows produce a spillover effect that is good for the industry: If you can’t get into one show, you may well spring for another. A star-driven hit, however, isn’t the same thing. The season Pacino and Hanks and Bette Midler were putting couture-sheathed rears in seats, Broadway registered its worst attendance eight years. More important, the star phenomenon and the consequent real-world disconnect in ticket prices leaves a monochrome audience, the color being green.

I asked Lansbury why on earth she was subjecting herself to the outré grind of a tour.

148263634“As my career in the theater has been a succession of long runs over a number of years, taking a show on the road was the normal thing to do,” she said, nonplussed. “It is only now that it has been brought to my attention that this is not necessarily the thing to do. Having been in the business as long as I have, and having built an audience both young and old, I get a terrific kick out of their reaction to seeing me in the flesh.

“In London this past winter I appeared in Blithe Spirit, audiences hailed me like a rock star!” she added. “Why? Because they are still watching Murder She Wrote, Bedknobs And Broomsticks, Beauty And The Beast  — every day all over the world.”

Not to mention The Manchurian Candidate. Neither trouper nor star could have said it better.

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Oscar Watch: First-Class Films From Aniston, Connelly, Costner, Gere Still Seek Distributors As Clock Running Out

The 2014 Oscar clock is running out for powerful, but still unsold, festival showpieces starring Jennifers Aniston and Connelly, as well as Kevin Costner and Richard Gere.

Cake Shelter Black And White Sunday PageSeveral unspoken-for films came into this year’s Toronto International Film Festival determined not only to find a distributor, but to set a 2014 release date. In the case of Still Alice, the touching drama of a woman’s descent into early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, that plan worked spectacularly well. It had a stirring world-premiere screening on Sept. 8 in a less-visible afternoon slot at TIFF and quickly sparked Oscar buzz for star Julianne Moore, a four-time nominee who has never won.

Still AliceSony Pictures Classics presidents Michael Barker and Tom Bernard quickly recognized the kind of role that has Oscar written all over it, and two days later the picture sold to SPC (which, despite having its largest slate of Oscar hopefuls ever, still had an opening for a Best Actress contender). They announced that Still Alice would open in 2014, in time to qualify for the Academy Awards. Moore became an instant contender for the film directed by Wash Westmoreland and Richard Glatzer.

One of the most buzzed-about pictures on the fall festival circuit this year was Ramin Bahrani’s  intense and pulse-pounding drama 99 Homes, with Andrew Garfield and Michael Shannon giving award-worthy performances in a film set during the housing and financial crisis of 2008. It played in Venice, then Telluride.

pete_hammond_300x100I saw it at the latter and cornered Bahrani to ask if the film was meant for this year, should it get a distributor. He told me they had lots of interest already then but were holding back for Toronto, when the other distribution companies had a chance to see it. I know at least one mini-major was gunning for it there when it premiered the evening of Sept. 8. But for whatever reason, it went instead in a $3 million deal to upstart Broad Green Pictures, which announced it was being held for release next year. Bahrani told me in Telluride he strongly felt it should be released this year because Shannon and Garfield “would definitely be nominated.” But it’s not in the works.

The model clearly was 2008’s The Wrestler, which also debuted at Venice and sold at Toronto to Fox Searchlight, which quickly ramped up a campaign and a December release, leading to Golden Globe and BAFTA Best Actor wins for Mickey Rourke, as well as an Oscar nomination. Searchlight99 homes pulled off a similar feat the next year when it dropped Crazy Heart into the race at the last possible minute, upsetting the whole apple cart. It walked away with Oscars for Best Actor Jeff Bridges and Best Song.

Fox acquired that film in July 2009 but planned a spring 2010 opening. Once the Scott Cooper-directed film was reworked, the distributor decided it had Oscar potential and waited until early November to announce it would be a limited December opening in time to qualify.

That year, Fox Searchlight didn’t have much of an Oscar slate after coming off a Best Picture win (and awards season sweep) in 2008 with Slumdog Millionaire, so the last-minute entry plan made sense — and definitely paid off. This year with The Grand Budapest Hotel, Birdman and Wild, there is no vacancy at their inn.

Adding yet another contender to the full slates from the usual Oscar competitors like Searchlight, Sony Pictures Classics and The Weinstein Company, works not only at cross purposes with the films already being promoted, but also is cost prohibitive.

So it becomes a whole lot tougher for other fall fest debutantes pining for a home and a quick jump into the race. Kevin Costner, who put his own money into writer-director Mike Binder‘s terrific, racially charged drama Black And White, is determined to see the film released this year, he told me at the reception following Nespresso Presents The "Black And White" After Party At The Toronto International Film Festivalits TIFF premiere.

It certainly would deserve Oscar consideration not only for his performance — one of his best ever — but also for co-star Octavia Spencer. But at press time there still is no word on a distribution pickup for the movie, and that has to happen before any campaign can get underway.

The film has been showing to distributors since the spring, but Costner is being very cautious about how it should be released — and when.   Further complicating matters is that this year’s Best Actor lineup is impossibly crowded, with more legitimate contenders than we have seen in many a season. Some distributors just don’t want, or need, yet another entry into that derby. So at the moment, Black And White’s chances for this year’s Oscar contest are somewhat gray.

Also in that gray area are two films aiming at the far less-crowded Best Actress race. Beyond top-tier contenders Reese Witherspoon in Wild, Felicity Jones in The Theory Of Everything and now Moore and perhaps Hilary Swank in the Western The Homesman, that race gets a little thinner and more unpredictable, with yet unseen but promising work from the likes of Oscar favorites Amy Adams and Jessica Chastain, as well as Rosamund Pike in Gone Girl,  which opens the New York Film Festival on Friday.

Meryl Streep is said to be a strong candidate for supporting actress in Into The Woods and IFC just announced this week that Boyhood’s Patricia Arquette (who could have gone either way) will beoscar statue campaigned in supporting as well. That leaves room.

As I noted in my Deadline TIFF coverage, Jennifer Aniston wowed the Toronto audience with her powerful dramatic turn as a woman suffering from chronic pain in Cake. Initial talk after the Sept. 8 afternoon premiere (just before Still Alice) indicated lots of interest. And I am told some smaller distributors have gone after it, including indie Ketchup, which if nothing else would make for a nice trade headline (“Ketchup nabs Cake“)But so far no word on an official home for Cake, let alone whether a distributor will position it for the 2014 competition.

????????And this week I am told potential distributors are still viewing Shelter, another TIFF debut, which was written and directed by first-time helmer Paul Bettany and stars his wife, Connelly, and Anthony Mackie. I caught it this week at UTA’s Beverly Hills offices.

It’s an immensely powerful and provocative love story about two homeless people on the streets of New York City — each with a past that is slowly revealed. One scene would be sure to land this film, as currently edited, an NC-17 rating. But there can be no doubt Connelly turns in her finest and riskiest performance since Requiem For A Dream.

Reps involved in the film have looked at the thin landscape in the Best Actress race and surmise there could be a spot for Connelly, given a December Oscar-qualifying run. This is a big “if” at this point as no distributor has signed on. Voting actors would very likely respond to this brave portrait of a woman on the verge, and certainly to Connelly’s raw and compelling work, which transcends even her Oscar-winning supporting turn in A Beautiful Mind. Mackie also is beautifully understated in a performance of great dignity.

Writer-director Oren Moverman’s Time Out Of Mind, another movie set among NYC’s homeless community that was for sale at TIFF, features Richard Gere in a stripped-down, article-0-1C99ECE000000578-778_634x895startling turn as a man reduced to living on the streets. It, too, does not yet have a distributor, but I am told it didn’t come into TIFF with the intention of being released for this year’s race. It gets a high-profile slot at the NYFF.

Another Moverman project, the Brian Wilson biopic Love And Mercy — which he wrote (Bill Pohlad directed)  —  did sell out of TIFF  to Lionsgate/Roadside Attractions and features award-worthy work from Paul Dano and John Cusack, who play Wilson at different ages. But I am told this will be held for 2015.

On the other hand, Chris Rock‘s Top Five was easily the hottest sales title at TIFF, going to Paramount for over $12 million. The studio is doing a quick turnaround, opening it wide in December. But that’s a commercial play, not one necessarily done with Oscar front of mind (although Rock’s hilarious screenplay could have a shot — who knows?).

But for Black And White, Cake and Shelter, time is fast running out. It might comfort them to know that two films that also debuted and sold in September at TIFF were held back, came out in the late spring/early summer of the next year — and still went on to win Best Picture Oscars long after their initial Fall Fest heat had cooled.

They were, of course, Crash and The Hurt Locker. Sometimes it just pays to wait.

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‘Maze Runner’ Races To $37.6M Internationally With No. 1s In 50 Countries; ‘Apes’ Crosses $100M In China

cinemaworldOverseas weekend estimates are in from most of the studios as Fox’s The Maze Runner outpaces other comers. With about $32.5M, the YA adaptation is tops domestically, and is mirroring that success overseas with $37.56M from 7,384 screens in 50 markets. Impressively, it is No. 1 in 50 countries (47 markets) this weekend, including opening No. 1 in 44 countries. Last week, the film beat a path to Mexico, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, and Central America for a debut frame of $8.5M. Its overseas cume is now $49M and the worldwide total is $81.5M.

The Wes Ball-helmed picture that’s based on the James Dashner novel, beat the openings of both Hunger Games and Divergent in Korea ($5.54M from 648 screens), Russia ($5.53M from 1,783), Hong Kong ($1.53M from 89), Thailand ($1.47M from 270), Philippines ($1.46M from 170), and UAE ($1M from 37), among others. Notably, in Korea it had 38% of the market, one that’s been crowded with huge local pictures in recent weeks.

Other major openings came from Australia with $3.34M on 310 screens and Brazil with $2M on 344. Holdover territory Mexico added $2M from 843 screens and is No. 2 behind local hit Cantiflas. Taiwan ($1.3M from 125), Malaysia ($1.2M from 226), Singapore ($766K from 57) and Central America ($330K from 91) all held at No. 1. The latter rose 28% in its 2nd frame. There are still 27 international markets to open including France, Germany, the UK and China.

A Walk Among The Tombstones is the other major new opener overseas this weekend and we’ll be back later with numbers as they land. Below is a rundown of the films which have now reported, including a milestone for Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes in China.

Lucy was knocked off her No. 1 international perch this weekend by The Maze Runner, but continues her strong run with an estimated $13M added this frame at 5,500 dates in 57 territories. The Universal portion was $11.6M for a total just shy of $200M at $199.9M. The full overseas haul is now $253M. Lucy opened No. 2 in Argentina behind local hit Wild Tales with $506K at 110 dates. Continuing a trend, the opening gave Luc Besson his best debut as a director in the market. New openings also included Bolivia (No. 1) and Venezuela ($150K at 30 dates). Russia held the 2nd frame with $4M at 1,011 dates. The 11-day total is $16.6M. In the UK, the Scarlett Johansson pic has had a fantastic run and now has a cume of $21.5M. Still to open are Italy, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes arrived in its final international market with $3.72M on 712 Japanese screens. It was the top Hollywood picture in the territory that’s in the 2nd frame of local Warner film Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends. DOTPOTA is still beating its chest in China with $3.57M from 3,000 screens for a $103M cume. That makes it the 2nd Fox title to surpass the $100M box office mark there this year. In total this frame, the sequel added $8.15M from 4,197 screens in 16 markets, taking the international cume to $476.4M and bringing the worldwide gross to $681.5M.

Sony’s Sex Tape continues to perform overseas with an estimated $7.6M weekend in 52 markets. The cume is now $70.5M. Openings this frame included Venezuela with $525K on 45 screens — double the opening of Cameron Diaz’ other summer comedy, The Other Woman. Colombia launched with $164K on 65 screens, 47% bigger than Diaz’ Bad Teacher. Sex Tape had another No. 1 weekend in Germany with a cume there of $7.4M; France now has $2.8M; Italy is at $2.6M after two frames and the UK has a $5.8M cume after 3 frames.

Raphael, Michelangelo, Leonardo and Donatello traveled to Italy this weekend for the first time with a No. 1 opening. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles debuted to $2.3M at 387 locations. Paramount says this is 35% above GI Joe: Retaliation and 17% above The Lego Movie. The film also held solidly in Australia in its 2nd frame with $2.1M at 258 sites for a cume of $8.9M. In total, the Turtles added $7.3M in 49 territories this weekend for an offshore cume of $148.3M. Upcoming October releases include France, Germany, Spain and China – the latter on October 31.

Now with 83% of its international footprint covered, Guardians Of The Galaxy earned an estimated $5.2M overseas this weekend. That lifts the offshore cume to $318.6M, edging out the domestic take of $313.7M and bringing the global box office to $632.3M. It was playing in 38 markets this weekend, its 8th. The UK, Russia and Australia are still tops for the Marvel wonder, and China is still looming on October 10.

Hercules had no new major openings this frame, but added $5.2M at 2,491 locations in 31 markets.The international total to-date is $146.9M. In its 3rd weekend in Brazil, Hercules added $1.6M from 434 locations for a local cume of $11.5M. Germany added $994K from 452 sites bringing the local haul to $6.8M. China and Japan are still to come on October 21 and 24, respectively.

The Boxtrolls is vying for a 2nd week at No. 1 in the UK where it’s facing off with A Walk Among The Tombstones. The Universal release added an estimated $2.2M at 503 dates for a total of $5.9M. The full weekend for Boxtrolls is an estimated $4M at 1,806 dates in 11 for an early total of $11M. Australia bowed on Thursday and finished the weekend at No. 4 with $551K at 250 dates. In its 2nd frame in Mexico, the Laika animation added $902K at 579 dates for a total of $3.4M. There are 46 territories to open over the next few months.

Deliver Us From Evil earned an estimated $3.9M from 40 markets this weekend, bringing the overseas cume to $47.9M. Sony says Brazil opened with a very good $1.1M on 310 screens, bigger than comp titles Insidious: Chapter 2 (+79%) and Mama (+43%). The Netherlands earned $195K on 53 screens for a No. 3 start and Japan grossed $100K on 58 screens, 7 % more than Insidious: Chapter 2. In holdovers, Mexico earned $725K ($2.7M cume); France added $400K ($2.4M cume); Spain took $350K ($3M cume); Germany delivered $325K ($2.5M cume); and Russia added $175 ($8.4M cume).

Universal horror titles As Above, So Below and The Purge: Anarchy continued their international runs this weekend. The former grossed an estimated $2.8M at 1,800 dates in 40 territories for an overseas total of $12.5M with nine territories still to open. The Purge sequel grossed an estimated $960K at 370 dates in 16 territories and raised the international total to $36.2M this weekend.

In a continued string of strong runs for Fox International Productions, Spanish co-production El Nino whipped up another $1M from 375 screens in Spain and India’s Finding Fanny made a further $574K from 556. German comedy Doktorspiele has now cumed $6.3M at home while Guten Tag, Ramon is at $4.5M in Mexico.

Fox’s Let’s Be Cops rang up another $1.5M from 826 screens in 22 markets, pushing the international cume to $25M and the global total over $101M. The comedy is having a huge run in Holland where it is No. 1 for the 6th frame in a row.

Passing $300M worldwide this week, The Fault In Our Stars added another $1.28M from 1,247 screens in 10 overseas markets. The international total is now $177.2M. After three weeks in Italy, the movie is at No. 3 with a $5.94M cume. In France and Venezuela it showed small drops for respective cumes of $8M and $7.13M.

With an additional $1M this frame, 22 Jump Street is playing still in 24 markets and has an international total of $133.3M. France continues to hold well, down 40% for $320K in its 4th frame for a $4.2M cume; Brazil earned another $160K ($2M cume) and Mexico added $155K ($1.7M cume).

Universal is releasing British thriller The Riot Club in the UK and Ireland. The Lone Scherfig-directed ensemble opened there this weekend and grossed an estimated $850K at 378 dates for a No. 5 debut.

Boyhood grossed an estimated $760K from limited releases in 20 territories for a Universal total of $12.7M. In holdovers, Spain had $284K at 102 dates in week 2 for a 10-day total of $784K and Australia grossed $171K at 51 dates for a 25-day total of $1M.

Still breathing fire, How To Train Your Dragon 2 added $734K from 1,418 screens in 11 markets as it rounds out its run. In the UK, where it has a cume of $41.4M after 11 frames, the film dropped just 7% from last weekend. The offshore total is now $436.4M, while the worldwide cume has passed $610.

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‘Star Wars 7′ Ice Planet Confirmed; But Is It Hoth?

Spoilers often come from the strangest of places. Today, we have word that former James Bond actor Roger Moore, star of the Star Wars-influenced Moonraker, has seen the Ice Planet set in Star Wars: Episode VII with his own eyes. And Harrison Ford was present. But did he visit Hoth?

Roger Moore refused to say more about what he saw during his time spend on set, but this does match up with previous rumors that Star Wars: Episode VII is returning to the snowy planet seen during the first act of The Empire Strikes Back.

Star Wars 7 News has a transcript from a recent BBC interview, where the actor talks about visiting his old friend, director J.J. Abrams on the set. Here is that conversation:

Roger Moore: Anyway, the day before last, I know we stopped by the office, and I went up to see – on a very closed, secret set – my friend J.J. Abrams, who is directing Star Wars: Episode VII.

BBC: Ooh, wow!

Roger Moore: …With Harrison Ford.

BBC: So, what were they filming that day? Can you tell me?

Roger Moore: Well, yes! They were filming something with a lot of mountains and snow.
BBC: Okay, hmm.

Roger Moore: But I’m assigned to secrecy.

BBC: Did you really have to sign a thing?

Roger Moore: Oh, erm… No.

Both: [laugh]

BBC: It wouldn’t surprise me! They are crazy, those people, so…

Roger Moore: But they have to be secret about it! What happens with film is that, somehow or another, people get their hands on outtakes and prints, and they print them and they sell them for television in the Philippines – I had a Filipino working for us years ago and he said “Oh, my family have already seen the film,” which hadn’t even had its royal premiere!

BBC: Oh! That’s extraordinary, isn’t it?

The plot of Star Wars: Episode VII will reportedly find Han Solo and Chewbacca on a desperate search to find a missing Luke Skywalker. During their mission to retrieve him, they are said to visit some iconic locations, such as Endor, Dagobah, Tatooine and Hoth. Leaked Snowtrooper and Han in Hoth gear concept designs further confirmed this. But it has been teased that this snowy, mountain filled landscape Roger Moore speaks of is not actually Hoth, but a different planet occupied by the Sith.

Badass Digest previously reported this plot spoiler:

So begins a quest to find the missing Jedi Master. Meanwhile, on an ice planet, nefarious forces are building a super weapon, one capable of destroying not planets but entire solar systems … In many ways this plot of Episode VII is an echo of A New Hope. Instead of R2 coming to Tatooine it’s a hand falling from the sky, but the basic sweep of the story is similar, and intentionally so. But things that seem familiar may not be as familiar as you think – don’t assume that every ice or desert planet in the galaxy has already been visited, if you know what I’m saying/”

Do you want to return to Hoth on the big screen, or do you hope J.J. Abrams is actually creating new planets? Let us know what you think!

Star Wars: Episode VII comes to theaters December 18th, 2015 and stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong’o. The film is directed by J.J. Abrams.

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‘Big Hero 6′ Promo Introduces Robotics Prodigy Hiro Hamada

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Ryan Potter introduces himself and his character in a new promo for Disney’s animated adventure Big Hero 6. Learn more about robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada in this superhero movie based on the Marvel comic book. He has a robot best friend, and he is a master inventor. If he can dream it, he can build it. He also has a group of friends just like him. You won’t believe the stuff they come up with. If you can relate, watch this clip full of fun new footage, and learn how you can enter Disney’s latest contest, which is seeking real life inventors who want to use science to change the world.

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Disney and XPrize Challenge have teamed up for a new contest, calling all young inventors to participate. What one problem would you tackle to change the world? How would you do it? Tell Disney in a new video.

This is your chance to become part of the real-life Big Hero 6. Tell Disney how you would use S.T.E.A.M. (science, technology, engineering, arts or mathematics) know-how to solve that problem, big or small, that effects your school, your community, or the entire world. Show Disney how you would use your creativity and ingenuity to help our world run a little better.

Winners will receive a trip to Hollywood to walk the red carpet and meet the innovators and animators behind Disney’s Big Hero 6.

Learn more: Click Here!

Big Hero 6 comes to theaters November 7th, 2014 and stars Jamie Chung, Genesis Rodriguez, Damon Wayans Jr., Alan Tudyk, T.J. Miller, Scott Adsit, Maya Rudolph, James Cromwell. The film is directed by Don Hall, Chris Williams.


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Matt Damon Eyes ‘Great Wall’ of China Movie

Sep 20, 2014 by B. Alan Orange

Bourne 5 isn’t the only movie Matt Damon is interested in at the moment. He is also eyeing a role in the upcoming drama The Great Wall, which offers a history lesson on how and why the Great Wall of China was built.

Yimou Zhang is set to direct the film, which Legendary Pictures’ Thomas Tull has been attempting to get off the ground for years now. Carlo Bernard and Doug Miro wrote the script.

The Great Wall will reveal the mystery behind why the Great Wall of China was built, and the secrets that are kept under its stone structure.

The Great Wall was set to shoot last year, which would have given Legendary a foothold in the Chinese market. At that time, Edward Zwick (The Last Samurai) was going to direct, with Henry Cavill and Benjamin Walker set to star, but the project fell apart.

Matt Damon will next appear in The Martian, directed by Ridley Scott. Scheduling complications may keep him from signing on for The Great Wall. The actor nearly worked with Yimou Zhang on The Flowers of War, but Christian Bale eventually took the part.

The Great Wall is in development . The film is directed by Yimou Zhang.

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‘Deadpool’ Will Be Rated PG-13 Instead of R

Sep 20, 2014 by B. Alan Orange

After years of languishing in development hell, 20th Century Fox has finally decided to move forward with a Deadpool movie. Long expected to be a low-budget R rated outing full of violence and foul language, a new report backs up claims from July that this version will be rated PG-13, and that’s the reason behind it finally getting made.

It was long assumed that Fox was struggling with their decision to make Deadpool PG-13 or R. It is being reported now that the only reason director Tim Miller got the go-ahead from the studio was because writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick were able to find a way to make the film PG-13 without losing its dark tone and sense of humor. The film will definitely push PG-13 to the edge.

Meet the Movie Press explains the situation on their latest episode:

“I heard from the director that they finally figured out the script, and it was right before this was announced, that they figured out, and you guys are all gonna hate this, they figured out how to make it PG-13. And therefore “not lose its soul”, and that’ a quote, of the script so that they can make it.”

This may seem like old news to some, as creator Rob Liefeld tweeted back in July that the film was going to be PG-13, and that there never was any conversations about Deadpool being R rated. That was never even a possibility. But, he says, there will be an unrated director’s cut that will stand as a more ‘R’ rated version of the film sometime after its initial theatrical release.

Here are his tweets, followed by the latest episode of :

So much mis-information from the mis-informed in regards to Deadpool film. The version under review is a PG-13 version, not an R….

— robertliefeld (@robertliefeld) July 30, 2014

The PG-13 rating now allows for truckloads of violence and edgy themes…. An R rated version is not a consideration and hasn’t been…

— robertliefeld (@robertliefeld) July 30, 2014

I should add, “hasn’t been for years” …. You can always pad a DVD release with R cuts. No site is providing you with correct answers…

— robertliefeld (@robertliefeld) July 30, 2014

The brilliant screenplay has been equally brilliantly modified…. R is not a blockade any longer.

— robertliefeld (@robertliefeld) July 30, 2014

Also, please understand that I would LOVE nothing more than an R rated Deadpool, mainly for bloody violence, thats just not a reality.

— robertliefeld (@robertliefeld) July 31, 2014

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Deadpool comes to theaters February 12th, 2016 and stars Ryan Reynolds.

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Tywin Lannister Will Return in ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 5?

Sep 20, 2014 by B. Alan Orange

Stop reading now if you’ve never seen Game of Thrones and intend on watching it in the future, or if you simply have not gotten around to watching the Game of Thrones Season 4 finale just yet.

Spoilers! Lie ahead…

When last we saw patriarch Tywin Lannister, he was not looking too good. But according to actor Charles Dance, we haven’t seen the last of this popular character. In an interview with MTV UK, Charles Dance reveals that he will indeed be back.

“I’m not completely missing out on the next series. You haven’t seen the last of Tywin Lannister.”

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In Game of Thrones Season 4, Tyrion Lannister shot his father Tywin full of crossbow bolts while he was sitting on a different kind of ‘throne’. While he appeared to be dead, it’s apparent that he will be back in some form.

Here is that ominous ‘death’ scene:

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What do you think? Excited to see the return of Tywin Lannister? Or should he just stay dead?

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