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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Movies

Wonder Woman 1984 First Look: Steve Trevor Is Alive?! Moments ago, fans got their first look at Warner Bros.' Wonder Woman sequel; actress Gal Gadot and director Patty Jenkins shared stills from the movie via their social media accounts. Jenkins posted a photo of Chris Pine, whose character sacrificed himself at the end of the first film. "Welcome to WONDER WOMAN 1984, Steve Trevor!" she said on Twitter. "#WW84." To avoid spoilers, Jenkins didn't offer any explanation for his reappearance. In sharing the photo, she also confirmed the film's title, after previously revealing it's set in the Cold War. In the second photo, Gadot's character scans a dozen televisions, presumably trying to make sense of the new era. (Look closely to and you can find J.R. Ewing from Dallas on one screen.) Wonder Woman, released in the summer of 2017, become a cross-cultural phenomenon, inspiring millions of moviegoers and raking in $821.9 million at the global box office. In doing so, Gadot -- who made her first appearance as the comic book character in 2016's Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice -- became the first woman to front a DC Extended Universe movie. "For years when people would say, 'Who would go see a Wonder Woman film?' I always thought, 'Wonder Woman's an amazing thing. I think a lot of people would.' But the way that the has embraced it -- seeing it multiple times, making it No. 1 at the box office and sending the message that they have -- I'm touched and blown away," Jenkins told E! News last fall, adding that she had been talking to the studio for 10 years about bringing the story to the big screen. "Everybody knew my love of it. Everybody knew I wanted to do it in a very specific way," Jenkins said. "Finally, when those two things coincided, it was magical, wonderful and perfect." Jenkins officially signed on to direct the sequel in September 2017. She developed the story with Geoff Johns -- and together, they teamed up with Dave Callaham to write the screenplay. In March, Jenkins announced the "sensationally talented" Kristen Wiig had joined the cast as Dr. Barbara Ann Minerva/Cheetah, a British archaeologist who gains superhuman speed and strength from the plant-god Urzkartaga. In May, Pedro Pascal was cast in an undisclosed role. The sequel is scheduled to be released in RealD 3D and IMAX 3D on Nov. 1, 2019. Principal photography is already underway, with production set to take place stateside in Alexandria, Va., and Washington, D.C., and abroad in the Canary Islands, Spain and the U.K. Wonder Woman production designer Aline Bonetto and costume designer Lindy Hemming are returning, and Richard Pearson will edit the film. Gadot and Jenkins are producing the project with Stephen Jones, Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder and Zack Snyder. Johns is an executive producer with Wesley Coller, Walter Hamada, Rebecca Roven Oakley and Richard Suckle. Earlier this year, Gadot told E! News she was "grateful" for the "amazing" response to the first movie. "I think the universe has played this entire thing in the most beautiful, special way. I think people were really, really ready for this movie, and I think my director, Patty Jenkins, had such a great, special take and vision on this character," Gadot explained. "She's done amazing." The DC Extended Universe has two other movies in the pipeline: Aquaman, starring Jason Momoa, premieres Dec. 21, 2018, followed by Shazam!, starring Zachary Levi, on Apr. 5, 2019. (Eonline)

Dumbo Comes to Life in Disney's New Teaser Trailer. Have you ever seen an elephant fly? Early Wednesday morning, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures released the first teaser trailer for Dumbo, from the imagination of director Tim Burton; the live-action adventure expands on the animated tale of the same name, released in 1941. The story begins when circus owner Max Medici (Danny DeVito) enlists former star Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell), and his children Milly Farrier (Nico Parker) and Joe Farrier (Finley Hobbins), to care for a newborn elephant. "We're all family here," Milly tells a frightened Dumbo. "No matter how small." One thing that isn't small? His oversized ears, making him a laughingstock in the struggling show. But everything changes for Dumbo once the children realize he can fly. Impressed by the animal's unique ability, entrepreneur V.A. Vandevere (Michael Keaton) recruits Dumbo for his larger-than-life circus: Dreamland. There, he soars to new heights next to aerial artist Colette Marchant (Eva Green) -- well, until Holt realizes that Dreamland is actually more of a nightmare. The live-action reimagining of Dumbo utilizes state-of-the-art visual effects to bring the title character and his animal friends to life. Burton has a long history with the film studio, having started in its animation division in the early '80s. From there, Burton went on to direct The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), Alice in Wonderland (2010) and Frankenweenie 92012). Dumbo flies into theaters on March 29, 2019. Ehren Kruger wrote the screenplay and produced the movie with Derek Frey, Katterli Frauenfelder and Justin Springer. Nigel Gostelow served as the project's executive producer. In recent years, the studio has released live-action adaptations of animated classics such as Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, The Jungle Book and Sleeping Beauty, with Aladdin, Mulan and more in the works. Spinoffs of Mary Poppins and Winnie-the-Pooh will be released in 2018. (Eonline)

Ryan Reynolds Responds to Kanye West's Claim That Deadpool 2 Stole His Sound. Kanye West has taken to Twitter to offer his musical talents to the Deadpool films, and Ryan Reynolds is all ears. "I love both Deadpool movies [fire emojis] I heard tracks in it that sound similar to mine...bro I would have cleared my music for Deadpool," he wrote on Tuesday afternoon. West then explained his fondness for the superhero flicks in another tweet, writing, "your guys writing and approach is so innovative ... I love how you guys break the 4th wall... thank you for being innovative and please know I'm down to clear next time." The film's star, Reynolds, responded to West's offer within the hour, expressing his tongue-in-cheek support, writing, "Agree. I'm having a word with Celine Dion." Deadpool 2 features mostly throwback tunes, along with an original song by Dion called "Ashes," which Reynolds referenced in his tweet. Although praise from West can't hurt, it seems like the film is doing just fine on its own. The sequel had the second largest opening ever for an R-rated film, amassing over $657 million since its release on May 18. Maybe we can still hold out hope for a Deadpool-Kanye collab in the future. West has kept himself busy in the last few months. In addition to his 41st birthday celebrations, he released his eighth studio album, Ye, on June 1, and continues to make more music. (Eonline)

Bryan Singer to get directing credit on biopic 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. Bryan Singer has received the directing credit for Freddie Mercury biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody," despite being replaced by Dexter Fletcher during the latter stages of the shoot. Fletcher came on board to direct in December after Fox fired Singer from the project after repeated absences from the set had forced the studio to halt production. Fox is opening the movie on Nov. 2. The studio confirmed a report about the directing credit Tuesday in Empire Magazine. "Bryan Singer is the credited director of the film," producer Graham King said. "Basically, Bryan had some personal issues going on. He wanted to hiatus the movie to deal with them, and the movie had to get finished. That was what it came down to ... It wasn't about reinventing the wheel. We needed someone who would have some creative freedom, but work inside a box." King also said in the interview that Fletcher shot footage for about 16 days. King and star Rami Malek appeared at CinemaCon in Las Vegas on April 26 to tout "Bohemian Rhapsody." Fletcher said in an interview last month that he did not want the directing credit. The Directors Guild of America requires in its contracts that each film may have only one director or directing entity, if the two directors are an established team. Singer's directing credits include "The Usual Suspects," "Superman Returns," "X-Men," "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and "X-Men: Apocalypse." New Regency and GK Films are the production companies. Mercury wrote numerous hits for Queen, including "Bohemian Rhapsody," "Killer Queen," "Somebody to Love," "Don't Stop Me Now," "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" and "We Are the Champions." Ben Hardy is playing drummer Roger Taylor in "Bohemian Rhapsody." Gwilym Lee ("The Hollow Crown") is portraying lead guitarist Brian May, and Joe Mazzello is in the role of bass guitarist John Deacon. Lucy Boynton is playing Mary Austin, lifelong companion of Mercury. Mercury formed Queen with May and Taylor in 1970 and died of complications from HIV/AIDS in 1991 at the age of 45. (PageSix)

CineEurope: Fox Revs Up 'Alita,' 'Bohemian Rhapsody' in Likely Last Show Before Sale. Steve McQueen, Rami Malek and Queen's Brian May and Roger Taylor took to the stage in Barcelona. With Fox likely heading to CineEurope for the last time before its impending sale, much was made of the studio's long legacy in its presentation on Tuesday. In the opening video, the show which closed proceedings on the second day of the Barcelona trade show served up hat tips to some of the Fox's most notable films, including Cleopatra, Alien, The Full Monty, Speed, Fight Club, Braveheart, Die Hard, Home Alone, Black Swan and, of course, Avatar. were also references to its pending sale, with a video of international theatrical distribution president Andrew Cripps and international marketing president Kieran Breen packing for their trip to CineEurope showing the execs pull out a pair of Mickey Mouse ears and a Comcast T-shirt. Disney in December struck a $52.4 billion deal to buy large parts of 21st Century Fox, while Comcast has said it was preparing a "superior" offer, which could be unveiled as early as Wednesday. In her opening remarks, Twentieth Century Fox Film CEO and chairman Stacey Snider referenced the "uncertain time" for the studio, while thanking the audience of European exhibitors for "being by our side for 80 years." But despite any uncertainty, there were still plenty of titles for Fox to tout over its lengthy presentation. Lightstorm Entertainment's Jon Landau returned to Barcelona for the second time in two years to give an update on James Cameron's Avatar sequels, with the director himself offering a video message from set in which he revealed that they were on day 130 of performance capture work. "The early results are beyond even our expectations," he said. Landau also gave a major preview of Robert Rodriguez's upcoming sci-fi epic Alita: Battle Angel, a passion project for Cameron (who produces) and due out in December. The audience was treated to exclusive footage from three key scenes from the film, which stars Christoph Waltz, Mahershala Ali, Jennifer Connelly and newcomer Rosa Salazar in the lead role. Other films showcased included Shane Black's return of The Predator, due out in September, the latest X-Men installation Dark Phoenix (the audience were treated to a first look from the film, with Sophie Turner in the lead role), and the Brad Pitt-starring sci-fi Ad Astra by James Grey, with the pair unveiling the very first glimpse of the film via a video message. None other than Arnold Schwarzenegger also popped up on the screen to discuss the next Terminator reboot, currently in production, serving up the classic line, "hasta la vista, baby" Oscar-winning director Steve McQueen hit the stage in Barcelona to talk up his latest all-star film Widows, unveiling a clip and the trailer. The filmmaker revealed that after 12 Years a Slave he had vowed to make a female-driven feature, describing his lead star Viola Davis as the "Marlon Brando of now." Despite being only three weeks into production on his latest feature, Taika Waititi recorded a video (from a rooftop in Prague at 5 a.m.) to discuss his dark WWII comedy Jojo Rabbit, starring Scarlett Johansson, Rebel Wilson, Sam Rockwell and Waititi himself, playing Adolf Hitler. The film was part of the Fox Searchlight element of the presentation, which also included the Nicholas Hoult-starring biopic Tolkien; Yorgos Lanthimos' The Favourite; Can You Ever Forgive Me, starring Melissa McCarthy; and The Aftermath, produced by Ridley Scott and starring Keira Knightley. From the animation arena, the crowd were given a first look at family espionage comedy Spies in Disguise, featuring the voice talents of Will Smith and Tom Holland, while Fox lined up its upcoming list of animated titles, including Nimona, Ron's Gone Wrong, Bob's Burgers and Foster. Much like 2017, which saw Fox close its show with The Greatest Showman, this year's presentation ended on a musical high. Producer Graham King and lead star Rami Malek took to the stage to showcase extended footage from Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, in which Malek plays iconic frontman Freddie Mercury. Adding further star power, Brian May and Roger Taylor then came up to give the audience a wave. (Hollywood Reporter)

Annecy: 'Collateral' Writer David Hare Talks Being in Front of the Camera in 'Wall'. "This takes animation back to what you might call a poetic roughness," he said of the black-and-white film that explores the 440-mile Israeli-Palestinian border wall. Though he's better known for his work behind the camera as the Oscar-nominated writer of The Hours and The Reader, as well as the recent Netflix series Collateral, David Hare takes a starring role front and center in Wall. Or at least an animated version of him does. "This is not Disney, this is not Pixar," says Hare, about the visually jarring, black-and-white film directed by Cam Christiansen that is screening in competition in Annecy. "This is deliberately handcrafted and takes animation back to what you might call a poetic roughness rather than that very finished look you get from massively financed films. It's just one man with a computer." The film took Christiansen seven years to make. While the Berlin Wall was universally hated by citizens of both sides, this wall is viewed vastly differently depending on where you stand. On the Israeli side the wall is seen as a massive success in improving security and cutting down on terrorism, while in Gaza it is seen as a de facto land grab says Hare. At 440 miles, it is four times the length and twice as high as the Berlin wall, nearly 500 feet thick in some places, and cost $4 billion to construct. "And the scale of the wall, I really don't think anybody understands the scale who hasn't visited it and seen just how enormous it is, how far it stretches and what a massive physical fact it is in the lives of people on both sides of the wall." Hare, himself not previously a fan of animation, said the jarring black and white visual style lends itself to the rawness of the subject. "We wanted to find a completely new way of looking at it and there is something about the sheer imagery of the natural beauty of the area, the beauty of the graffiti and the beauty of the construction that really suits itself to animation. I mean it's a visual feast," he says. He admits to a lack of knowledge of animated films "I haven't even seen Frozen," he joked but is passionate about innovation in film. "That's what excites me. What I like about it is that it isn't in any genre at all," he says. "And so because of that I think peoples' reactions are completely varied, quite apart from the political charge of the subject." The writer also says genre film is dead, thanks in part to series. "The audience knows genre inside out. You can't make a film noir now, you just can't, because there have been so many. A romantic comedy, please. The formula is whacked," he says. That led him to Collateral, starring Carey Mulligan, a "police procedural" that he worked hard to construct with no elements of a procedural. He's also penned the upcoming Ralph Fiennes-directed The White Crow, about Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev's defection to the West in 1961. Hare sees more television projects for himself in the future. "Why would you not if you're a writer?" he asks of the new creator-based paradigm. "It's a rebalancing, and the rebalancing is that in the pecking order for however many years in Hollywood, the writers have been down at the bottom. Now suddenly writers have worked out there is a medium they can be right at the top and that medium is called television." (Hollywood Reporter)

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Thunderbirds: Refueling

USAFADS Thunderbirds refueling with the 79th Air Refueling Squadron from Travis Air Force Base.