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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Movies

Jude Law Discusses Dumbledore's Sexuality in Fantastic Beasts. Fantastic Beasts fans can breathe a sigh of relief. After the 2007 publication of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the final novel in the popular book series, author J.K. Rowling revealed one character, Albus Dumbledore, was gay. Which is why, in January, much ado was made after director David Yates said the character's sexual orientation would not be "explicitly" explored in the movie Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (premiering in theaters Nov. 16, 2018). "But I think all the fans are aware of that. He had a very intense relationship with Grindelwald when they were young men," Yates told Entertainment Weekly. "They fell in love with each other's ideas, and ideology and each other." In a new interview with the magazine, Jude Law, who plays a young version of the character in the upcoming film, says fans won't be disappointed as the Fantastic Beasts series continues. "Jo Rowling revealed some years back that Dumbledore was gay. That was a question I actually asked Jo and she said, 'Yes, he's gay,'" recalls Law, who stars in the Warner Bros. blockbuster alongside Johnny Depp (as Grindelwald) and Eddie Redmayne (as Newt Scamander). "But as with humans, your sexuality doesn't necessarily define you," Law explains. "He's multifaceted." Law hints that somewhere down the line, fans will learn more about his character's love life. "I suppose the question is: How is Dumbledore's sexuality depicted in this film? What you got to remember this is only the second Fantastic Beasts film in a series, and what's brilliant about Jo's writing is how she reveals her characters, peels them to the heart over time. You're just getting to know Albus in this film, and there's obviously a lot more to come. We learn a little about his past in the beginning of this film, and characters and their relationships will unfold naturally, which I'm excited to reveal," Law teases. "But we're not going to reveal everything all at once." The actor was familiar with the Harry Potter series before he was cast, and he "enjoyed" 2016's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. "Then I had the good fortune and opportunity to sit with J.K. Rowling shortly after we started work on it," he says. "She gave me a very good sense of Albus' life journey and who he was and what was happening in his head and his heart and his world for this particular story." He was inspired by the performances of Michael Gambon and Richard Harris, who both played an elder Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies. After talking to Yates, "We both decided that it wasn't necessary to do an impersonation of one of them as a younger man. This is a man with almost 100 years ahead of him before he became that character, so we wanted to look at who he was in this moment and construct our own version." "It makes me laugh when he's called 'Young Albus' because I'm 45, so I'm more in the middle of a midlife crisis," the actor jokingly confesses, "but I'm happy to hold onto that as long as I can!" For this movie in particular, Law wanted to lean into Dumbledore's playful side. "He has a youthful mercurial approach to life, but that there's something that hangs heavy in his heart, in his past, that underlies all of that," he says, adding, "There's a sense of humor and mischief, a dash of anarchy, a sense of what's right and what he believes in, and a sense of mystery." "There's a lot you don't know about Albus in this film. And there are certain restrictions in storytelling -- you'll see, it all makes sense," Law promises. "You don't see him in full flow yet." (Eonline)

Hungary Boosts Production Incentives Amid Eastern Europe Battle for Shoots. Ang Lee's 'Gemini Man,' starring Will Smith, and the latest 'Terminator' film are among the movies that have shot in Budapest this summer. Hungary has boosted its production tax incentives from 25 percent to 30 percent in an effort to maintain its competitive edge in the battle among Eastern European countries for foreign shoots. The increase, approved by the European Commission, is guaranteed until 2024 and applies to all films shooting in Hungary. In 2004, the country became one of the first in Eastern Europe to introduce tax incentives at a time when it was competing fiercely with the neighboring Czech Republic for productions and Prague's Barrandov Studios were winning top Hollywood shoots, such as The Chronicles of Narnia. Budapest's bid to become a regional rival to Prague paid off, and a stream of top international movies, including Steven Spielberg's thriller Munich, about the 1972 Summer Olympics killings of Israeli athletes, were drawn to Hungary. The Hungarian incentives prompted the introduction of a raft of incentives in the region, including a 20 percent rebate scheme in the Czech Republic. Today, only tiny Estonia, far to the north of Hungary, has a scheme that is equal to the country's new 30 percent rate. Poland, another one of the region's major players, does not offer tax incentives, but instead has a well-funded revolving door loan fund to encourage domestic and international productions. Although some other European countries also offer generous schemes, France, Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands all have deals worth at least 30 percent, Hungary's direct competitors are historically in its region. The main purpose of the increase is to "preserve Hungary's leading position and competitiveness in the European film industry," Andy Vajna, Hungary's film commissioner, told The Hollywood Reporter. "Hungary is following all those countries that have recently raised tax incentives in order to keep its leading position in the European film production market." Ang Lee's Gemini Man, starring Will Smith, and the latest Terminator film are among the movies that have shot in Budapest this summer. Hungary has among the highest per-capita film spending in Europe, accounting for 0.15 percent of GDP (gross domestic product) in 2015, according to the European Audiovisual Observatory. Last year, production spending totaled $400 million. (Hollywood Reporter)

Netflix Acquires Korean Tentpole 'Wolf Brigade', Will Delay Local Streaming Release. The Warner Bros. film will hit South Korean theaters on July 25. Netflix has acquired international distribution rights for South Korean film Illang: The Wolf Brigade (previously known by its working title Inlang) but will allow a 10-month holdback time for streaming the actioner at home, a source close to the deal confirmed for THR on Wednesday. The latest South Korean local production from Warner Bros. is set to hit theaters in the Asian country on July 25. It has yet to be revealed when the film will be made available on Netflix for the rest of the world, but there will be a holdback time of 10 months for South Korea, a source close to Warner Bros. Local Productions Korea said on conditions of anonymity. Netflix has traditionally premiered its own productions simultaneously on and offline. Last year, this lead to major South Korean exhibitors to ban the Cannes competition piece Okja by Bong Joon Ho. Directed by Kim Jee-woon, Illang is the live-action version of Japanese sci-fi animation Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade. The film transports the story to the year 2029 during a move to reunify the two Korea, and a cat-and-mouse chase unfolds between the police and an anti-government organization opposing reunification. "It'll be very noir, like most of my films, sort of like The Dark Knight featuring elements of a spy movie," director Kim Jee-woon told THR in 2016 before the start of shooting. "There will also be sci-fi twists featuring special power suits, again like Batman." Illang brings together a star-studded cast featuring Gang Dong-won, Jung Woo Sung and Han Hyo-joo. Lewis Pictures produced the project. This is the second time Kim has directed a Warner Bros. local production after 2016's period actioner The Age of Shadows. The film was chosen as South Korea's Oscar contender. (Hollywood Reporter)

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