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The Animatrix Network is an anime & manga fan club located in the Southwest suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. We usually meet on the third Saturday of each month (except when holidays or conventions coincide). The meetings are free and open to the public. Join us for a day filled with anime.

This site provides news, reviews, commentaries, and previews of the world of anime and everything it inspires, such as live-action films, comics, music, art, and other weird things to enjoy and contemplate.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Newsletter - November 2011

November 2011
News Collected and Edited by Octavio Soto
Mamoru Oshii Creates Chimamire My Love Manga/Anime Hybrid posted on 2011-10-10 07:00 EDT
Vampire comedy to premiere next February before release on mobile devicesMamoru Oshii, the director known for Ghost in the Shell, The Sky Crawlers, and other anime titles, is delving into digital media with a manga/anime hybrid called Chimamire My Love (My Blood-Stained Love). The project is aimed at mobile devices — starting with the iPad, and then expanding onto the iPhone and Android mobile devices. Oshii planned and created the project himself. The story revolves around a timid second-year high school student who finds a kindred spirit in a girl he meets via a blood donation site. The girl is actually a vampire, and the comedy follows the boy's madcap efforts to get blood donations for her. Oshii noted that in this current downturn in anime and films, hybrid digital media such as this project offers new, unexplored possibilities. He added that he wants to do the kind of slapstick comedy that he has not done since Urusei Yatsura. The completed work will premiere at the world's largest international short film festival in Clermont-Ferrand, France next February. It will then be distributed worldwide.

Shinryaku!? Ika Musume/Squid Girl 2 Goes on 2-Week Hiatus posted on 2011-10-11 04:50 EDT
No new episodes on October 24, November 7
The official website of the second Squid Girl television anime series announced on Tuesday that the anime will not air new episodes on October 24 and November 7 "due to circumstances at the station" TV Tokyo in the Kanto area.
Update: More information and image added. Since TV Aichi and TV Osaka (the other two stations showing the anime) will start their broadcasts two weeks after TV Tokyo did, TV Tokyo's hiatus will bring all three stations' episode schedules in line. 

Manga Creator Kei Aoyama Passes Away at 32 posted on 2011-10-12 00:00 EDT Creator of Evening's Yoiko no Mokushiroku, SWWEEET found in his apartmentThe television station TBS is reporting that manga creator Kei Aoyama was found dead, hung from his neck, in the bathroom of his Tokyo apartment on October 9. He was 32. There were no visible signs of wounds or a struggle in the bathroom, and the last posts on Aoyama's Twitter account, dated October 6, discussed mortality, including a final post that said: Well, I have much left to do and much I dreamed of doing, but I hardly have any "regrets." I am content with the 32 years I have lived. The police are investigating Aoyama's death as a possible suicide. The police had received an emergency call around 9:00 p.m. on October 9 from a person at the Japanese publisher Kodansha, who said, "We haven't been able to contact Mr. Aoyama." The police rushed to Aoyama's apartment, where they discovered him in the bathroom. Aoyama was serializing the manga Yoiko no Mokushiroku in Kodansha's Evening magazine from last year to the time of his passing. He also created or drew the manga SWWEEET in Shogakukan's Monthly Ikki magazine, China Girl, and Strobe Light. According to the police investigation, Kodansha was not able to contact Aoyama since October 6.

CG Appleseed's Aramaki to Direct CG Starship Troopers posted on 2011-10-12 08:30 EDT Transformers writer Dille, Macross artist Tenjin, Appleseed producer Chou also involved
Sony Pictures announced on Wednesday that it is producing a new computer-animated Starship Troopers: Invasion film with director Shinji Aramaki for release next summer. Aramaki had previously directed the two computer-animated Appleseed films, "The Package" segment of Halo Legends, Madox-01, Megazone 23 Part III, Viper's Creed, and the computer-animated pilot of Captain Harlock. He also worked on the mechanical designs for Bubblegum Crisis, Genesis Climber Mospeada, and other anime. Flint Dille is writing the screenplay after working as a story editor on The Transformers and G.I. Joe television series of the 1980s. He later wrote the Venom film and the video-game tie-ins for The Chronicles of Riddick. The staff commissioned illustrator Hidetaka Tenjin (Macross Frontier, Macross Zero, Hellsing Ultimate) to create the teaser poster (pictured right). Joseph Chou (Appleseed films, Halo Legends, proposed live-action Evangelion) is producing the new project. Edward Neumeier and Casper Van Dien of the live-action Starship Troopers film are executive producers.

Sony Pictures give the following description of the plot:
A distant Federation outpost Fort Casey comes under attack by bugs. The team on the fast attack ship Alesia is assigned to help the Starship John A. Warden stationed in Fort Casey evacuate along with the survivors and bring military intelligence safely back to Earth. Carl Jenkins, now ministry of Paranormal Warfare, takes the starship on a clandestine mission before its rendezvous with the Alesia and goes missing in the nebula. Now, the battle-hardened troopers are charged with a rescue mission that may lead to a much more sinister consequence than they ever could have imagined.... Before Paul Verhoeven's loose live-action film adaptation of Robert A. Heinlein's Starship Troopers novel classic and several direct-to-video follow-ups, Gundam anime studio Sunrise produced a video version of Starship Troopers in 1988. Tetsuro Amino (Macross 7, One Stormy Night) directed that version with designs by Kazutaka Miyatake (Macross, Gunbuster, Eureka Seven).  
Studio Nue (Macross, Legend of the Galactic Heroes) co-founder Naoyuki Kato had created powered suit designs for his illustrations in the 1977 Japanese reprint of Heinlein's novel. Sunrise has openly noted that Gundam creator Yoshiyuki Tomino drew some inspiration from the humanoid powered suits of Heinlein's Starship Troopers, although the mobile suit robots of Gundam are ten times the size of humans (18 meters, or the same size as the super robot pioneer Mazinger Z).
Kodansha: Sailor Moon 1 Reprinted after 50,000 Sell Out posted on 2011-10-14 09:55 EDT
Volume is #1 NY Times manga bestseller for 3rd week; 100,00 copies in print after 2nd run
Kodansha USA Publishing, the American arm of the Japanese publisher Kodansha, announced on Friday that the English version of Sailor Moon manga volume 1 will get a second print run after the first print run of 50,000 copies "sold out in just four weeks." Kodansha USA did not specify if the 50,000 copies of Naoko Takeuchi's magical girl manga sold out at the distributor level or at the retailer level. With the second print run, the volume will have 100,000 copies in print. Kodansha noted that the first volume of Sailor Moon has stayed on top of The New York Times manga bestseller list for a third week in a row since it debuted on September 13. Takeuchi's related Codename: Sailor V volume 1 had two weeks at #2 after debuting on September 13.

Game by Metal Gear's Kojima, 5pb's Shikura Has Anime Plans posted on 2011-10-15 17:40 EDT
Chiyomaru Shikura also discusses overseas prospects, release windowMetal Gear Solid game designer Hideo Kojima brought 5pb. studio head/producer Chiyomaru Shikura (Steins;Gate, Chaos;HEAd) onto his "Hideradio" program on Friday to discuss their previously announced game collaboration, and the two revealed that there are anime plans for the project. About a half hour into the 303rd episode of "Hideradio," Kojima explained that 5pb. is making their adventure game, and he is serving as a producer (as opposed to the project's director). Shikura and Kojima then added that they want to make an anime, as plans for an anime were developed alongside the game from the beginning. Shikura also discussed his overseas release strategy for this project and the Japanese adventure game genre in general. Shikura said that he and 5pb. are right in the middle of writing and producing another game, the previously announced Robotics;Note. He anticipates that Robotics;Note will be released next spring. Shikura projects that his collaborative project with Kojima will be released next year also. Shikura will produce the collaborative project's theme song, as he has done for other 5pb. projects. During the program, Kojima said that Shikura had two requests for the story. The first request was for the main lead to be a second-year high school student, but the two creators cannot reveal the second request yet.

Akihabara Hit-And-Run/Stabbings Made Into Film posted on 2011-10-17 19:45 EDT
River to star Misako Renbutsu as woman who lost otaku boyfriend in 2008 incident
The June 2008 hit-and-run and stabbing rampage in Tokyo's otaku shopping district of Akihabara (Akiba) is being made into a film for release next March. 20-year-old Misako Renbutsu (Major: Yūjō no Winning Shot) is starring in the 89-minute film River, the first to be made of this incident during which seven people were killed and 10 more were injured. Ryūichi Hiroki (Yomei Ikkagetsu no Hanayome) is not only directing, but he also planned and wrote the film. Renbutsu will play a woman who lost her love interest, who was an electronics otaku, in the attack. After the incident, she finds herself walking alone on the same street where her love interest was killed, and meets a young person who ekes out a living in the subway. The story "delicately" depicts the renewal of life that the heroine faces after her heart is wounded. Tomohiro Katō, who was 25 years old at the time, struck five individuals with a truck at an intersection near the main Japan Railways station of Akihabara at around 12:35 p.m. on June 8, 2008. He then proceeded to leave the vehicle and stab 12 people on the streets. Police apprehended the suspect on a side street shortly after the incident. This past March, the Tokyo District Court sentenced Katō to death. The film will be a special presentation at the 12th Tokyo Filmex event in November.

6 Arrested in Japan for Uploading One Piece Manga, Anime, Games posted on 2011-10-17 23:48 EDT
As of Monday, the Fukuoka Prefectural Police have arrested six suspects accused of using file-sharing software to upload One Piece and other manga, television anime, and games onto the Internet. A 35-year-old part-time worker and five other men were apprehended in Osaka prefecture's Yao City for violations of the Japanese Copyright Act, after allegedly uploading 42 items from April 2010 to May 2011. There have been several other arrests this year for illegal anime and manga uploaders in Japan. A man was arrested on September 28 for uploading the Suite Precure and Danbōru Senki anime using a file share program. After allegedly uploading Toaru Majutsu no Index II and other anime, police apprehended a 28-year-old male part-time worker from Nagoya City in August. Police in Hyōgo prefecture arrested a man in April for uploading about 28,000 files from 300 different animated and comic titles including Sunrise's Turn A Gundam.
Update: According to the Association of Copyright for Computer Software (ACCS), the suspects used the program Share. The 35-year-old part-time worker from Osaka shared first volume of Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin, and the 58th volume of One Piece. A 33-year-old company worker from Nagasaki shared various personal computer software. A 46-year-old company worker from Saitama Prefecture shared the 366th, 369th, and 370th installments of Detective Conan. A 46-year-old company worker from Aichi Prefecture shared Speed Learning English Beginning and Intermediate as well as Inazuma Eleven 4 Sekai e no Chōsen!! Bomber. A 31-year-old excavation worker from Tottori Prefecture and a 31-year-old carpenter both shared Professor Layton and Inazuma Eleven games.

Live-Action Akira Film Green-Lit by Warner posted on 2011-10-19 22:03 EDT
Production based on Katsuhiro Otomo's manga to begin in late February/early March
The Variety entertainment trade magazine is reporting on Wednesday that Warner Bros. has green-lit the live-action film adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira manga. Production on what Variety describes as a "potential tentpole project" is set to begin in late February or early March. (A "tentpole" franchise is a property which will, in theory, support a studio financially for much of a particular movie season.) According to Variety, the film's current story goes as follows: "Set in New Manhattan, the cyberpunk sci-fi epic follows the leader of a biker gang who must save his friend, discovered with potentially destructive psychokinetic abilities, from government medical experiments." Variety had reported in July that Warner hired director Jaume Collett-Serra (Unknown, Orphan, House of Wax) to direct the film, which was "being reenvisioned as a $90 million" blockbuster project. In May, previous director Albert Hughes left the project due to "creative differences" on the film. The development team with producer Andrew Lazar (Jonah Hex, Space Cowboys, Get Smart) hired a writer named Albert Torres last year, after screenwriters Gary Whitta, Mark Fergus, and Hawk Ostby were previously attached to the project. When the project was originally announced in 2008, it was intended to be the directorial debut for Ireland's Ruairi Robinson. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio (Titanic, The Aviator) is producing through his Appian Way production company.

Deadline Site: Nip/Tuck's Jablonski to Run Live-Action Noir posted on 2011-10-20 17:10 EDT
Suits showrunner Sean Jablonski replaces writer Steven Lightfoot (Criminal Justice)The entertainment news website Deadline reported on Thursday that Sean Jablonski has replaced Steven Lightfoot as the showrunner of the live-action television adaptation of the Noir anime. (The showrunner, as the Writers Guild of America puts it, is "in charge of pre-production, production, and post-production. In other words, everything.") Lightfoot was the showrunner for the first season of USA Network's Suits series, and he started writing on the FX series Nip/Tuck before becoming the executive producer for that show also. Lightfoot (Criminal Justice, House of Saddam), who had written the script for the live-action Noir project that got it green-lit, is no longer with the project. Starz CEO Chris Albrecht confirmed in August that the live-action Noir series will premiere on his company's television network next summer. That same month, the actors resource website Showfax Inc. posted a character sheet for the project. Executive producers Sam Raimi (Spider-Man, The Evil Dead, Spartacus: Blood and Sand, Xena, Priest, Legend of the Seeker), Bob Tapert (The Evil Dead, Spartacus: Blood and Sand, Xena, Legend of the Seeker), Joshua Donen, and Bill Hamm remain with the project.

Variety Writer: Actress Rooney Mara Passes on Oldboy Remake posted on 2011-10-20 17:50 EDT
Spike Lee's remake of Park Chan-Wook's manga-based Oldboy still needs female leadJustin Knoll, a writer for the entertainment trade magazine Variety, reported on his Twitter account on Wednesday that Spike Lee's remake of Park Chan-Wook's live-action film Oldboy is still filling its female led role since Rooney Mara (The Social Network, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo remake) passed on it. The film website Twitch had reported last month that the actress was being considered for the renamed character Marie by the film's staff, but had not yet been given a formal offer. Director Spike Lee (Do the Right Thing, Jungle Fever, Malcolm X) signed onto Mandate Pictures' American remake of Oldboy in July, and Josh Brolin is slated to play the male lead. Park's film was itself inspired by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi's manga Old Boy. Mandate Pictures is developing the project with producers Doug Davison and Roy Lee (The Ring, Dark Water [2005], Death Note and Godzilla remake plans) of Vertigo Entertainment and Lee's 40 Acres & A Mule Productions. Mark Protosevich (Thor, I Am Legend) wrote a script, and Mandate Pictures President Nathan Kahane is serving as executive producer. The trade magazine Variety earlier described the Korean film's story about "a man who's kidnapped and imprisoned for 15 years. When he's finally released and begins looking into the reason for his captivity, he soon finds out that his kidnapper has even more torturous plans for him." (The original manga has the protagonist imprisoned for a different number of years and does not have the Korean film's added plot twist ending.)

OutKast Video Director to Pitch Gigantor/Tetsujin 28 Film posted on 2011-10-21 01:00 EDT
Hip hop music video director Bryan Barber obtains rights to iconic anime robotTroubled by the lack of film work since his debut, hip hop music video director Bryan Barber is taking his skills in a new direction by pitching a US$60-million live-action movie based on the classic robot anime Gigantor (Tetsujin 28-gō). On Thursday, the entertainment website Deadline profiled Barber's path up to this point, including his meeting with 86-year old voiceover talent Fred Ladd. The voice-acting veteran controlled the North American licensing rights to the 1960s anime series, and Barber successfully negotiated with Ladd for the movie, merchandise, and video game rights. Barber said that he grew up watching Gigantor after coming home from school. Barber, 41, has directed a number of music videos for mainstream hip hop artists such as OutKast ("So Fresh, So Clean," "Hey Ya"), The Game ("My Life ft/ Lil' Wayne") and most recently Llyod's "Dedication to My Ex ft/ Andre 3000." In 2006, Barber directed the movie Idlewild, a Prohibition-era musical featuring OutKast, but it received average reviews and made just over US$12 million. After Idlewild, Barber spent US$50,000 to pitch his concept of a Wolverine film to Fox. Despite Barber's elaborate presentation with "motion capture, stunts, concept art, storyboards, and sound design," Fox went in another direction. (The studio reimbursed Barber for his presentation costs.) Barber explained his decision to pursue Gigantor next: "I decided, if I was willing to invest my money to gamble on a project I didn't own, why not spend that money on something I could control?” Originally titled Tetsujin 28-go, Gigantor is the American localized name of the anime adapted from Mitsuteru Yokoyama's 1956-1966 robot manga series. The series follows the story of boy detective Jimmy Sparks (Shōtarō Kaneda in Japan) and Gigantor, a super robot developed by Jimmy's father and was handed down to Jimmy. With a remote control, Jimmy uses Gigantor to protect the world.

Loups-Garous Film's Dub Cast Announced posted on 2011-10-21 20:13 EDT
Science fiction anime ships in North America on November 29
Sentai Filmworks representative Janice Williams announced the English dub cast of the Loups-Garous science fiction film on Friday. Steven Foster is directing the dub from Javier Lopez's translation. 

The film's main English dub cast includes:
Melissa Davis as Makino Haduki
Corey Hartzog as Ayumi Kono
Hilary Haag as Mio Tsuduki
Luci Christian as Rei Myao
Serena Varghese as Yuko Yabe
Andy McAvin as Riichiro Ishida
David Matranga as Toji Kunugi
Shelley Calene-Black as Shizue Fuwa

The Japanese production company Bandai Visual green-lit the anime film adaptation of the Loups-Garous Kihi Subeki Ōkami virtual reality werewolf novel by Requiem from the Darkness' Natsuhiko Kyogoku in 2009. Directed by Jun'ichi Fujisaku (Blood+), the film premiered in Japan in August 2010. The North American anime distributor Sentai Filmworks announced its license of Loups-Garous at Anime Expo in July. The film will ship in North America on November 29 for the retail price of US$19.99 on DVD and US$23.99 on Blu-ray.

Hulu Plus Heading to Nintendo Wii, 3DS posted on 2011-10-21 23:42 EDT
Nintendo announced on Friday that the video-streaming service Hulu Plus will be available for the Wii console and 3DS handheld system by the end of the year. To use the new feature, device owners must pay the Hulu Plus US$7.99 monthly fee. Nintendo holds a similar agreement with the streaming media provider Netflix. Nintendo also announced this week that 3D video-recording support is also coming to the 3DS this November. The new Expansion Slide Pad for the 3DS will ship in Japan on December 10.

Twitch Site: Gary Oldman, Helena Bonham-Carter Offered Akira Roles posted on 2011-10-23 16:00 EDT
Garrett Hedlund previously reported as frontrunner for 1 of 2 male leads

The Twitch entertainment news site reported on Sunday that Gary Oldman (Sid and Nancy, Harry Potter films, Dark Knight trilogy) and Helena Bonham-Carter (A Room with a View, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, The King's Speech) have been offered the roles of Colonel and Lady Miyako, respectively, in Warner's live-action film adaptation of Akira. Variety had reported that Garrett Hedlund, the star of last year's Tron: Legacy film, is a frontrunner for one of Akira's two male leads, although he has not been formally offered the role. Variety also reported that production on the live-action film adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira manga is set to begin in late February or early March. According to the magazine, the film's current story goes as follows: "Set in New Manhattan, the cyberpunk sci-fi epic follows the leader of a biker gang who must save his friend, discovered with potentially destructive psychokinetic abilities, from government medical experiments."

Anime Contents Expo 2012 to Run March 31-April 1 (Updated) posted on 2011-10-24 01:35 EDT
1 week after next year's Tokyo Anime Fair in Makuhari Messe east of Tokyo
The organizers of Anime Contents Expo (ACE) announced on Monday that the event will be held for the first time next year from March 31 to April 1. That weekend happens to be one week after next year's Tokyo International Anime Fair (March 22-25). The inaugural outing for the ACE event will be held at Makuhari Messe in Chiba east of Tokyo. This year's Anime Contents Expo was cancelled six days after the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake (Higashi Nihon Daishinsai) disaster of March 11. If it had been held, it would have run during the same weekend as Tokyo International Anime Fair, which was also cancelled this year. A group of anime and manga companies created ACE in response to the controversy surrounding the Tokyo International Anime Fair (TAF) and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government's amendment to Tokyo's Youth Healthy Development Ordinance. The amendment expands the number of manga and anime that fall under "harmful publications," the legal category of works that must not be sold or rented to people under the age of 18. Among others, 10 major manga publishers were planning to boycott TAF 2011 because of the amended ordinance, although not all of them would have formally exhibited at TAF or ACE.
Update: A controversy arose earlier this month when online posters noted that four of the manga publishers are still listed on TAF's website, and those posters then mistakenly assumed that the publishers are actively participating in TAF. However, Kadokawa Shoten President Shinichiro Inoue confirmed that his company is not part of TAF's executive committee. He explained that TAF simply had not updated that page since before their boycott.

Arrietty Anime Film's U.S. Dub Trailer Streamed posted on 2011-10-25 15:00 EDT
Studio Ghibli film to get N. American theatrical run starting February 17Disney began streaming a trailer for the North American-dubbed version of Hiromasa Yonebayashi and Studio Ghibli's Arrietty film on Tuesday. The film, which will be titled The Secret World of Arrietty, will receive a theatrical run in North America starting on February 17. The movie originally opened in Japanese theaters in July 2010 with supervision by Ghibli co-founder Hayao Miyazaki. The film also received a different English dub in the U.K. and ran in theaters there in August. The film re-imagines Mary Norton's 1952 novel The Borrowers by moving the story to a Tokyo suburb. The story revolves around Arrietty, a member of the "little people" who live under the floorboards of a regular human family's home, and their struggle to remain hidden from the human "beans." Producer Frank Marshall revealed in January that Bridgit Mendler is voicing the title character. Joining her in the cast are Amy Poehler, Will Arnett, David Henrie, and Carol Burnett.

Nintendo Wii U Not Expected Until June 2012 or Later posted on 2011-10-27 23:53 EDT Nintendo President Satoru Iwata confirmed on Thursday that his company does not expect to release the Wii U game console until next June or later. Iwata made the confirmation during his company's announcement of lowered projections for the current fiscal year, which ends next March. Nintendo now expects to lose 20 billion yen (about US$260 million) this year — the first annual loss for the company since it began publicly reporting its financial results in 1981.

Live-Action Kite to Be Shot in S. Africa for US$12 Million posted on 2011-10-28 12:30 EDT

Film Business Asia: Shooting to begin in January on "full on female actioner"The Film Business Asia website reported on Thursday that the live-action film adaptation of Yasuomi Umetsu's Kite anime will begin shooting in South Africa in January on a US$12-million budget. According to Film Business Asia, the South African production company Distant Horizon will reveal the film's actors at the American Film Market in California next week. Director David R. Ellis (Shark Night 3D, Cellular, the sequels Final Destination 2 and The Final Destination, Snakes on a Plane, Asylum) was attached to the project earlier this year. Distant Horizon's Anant Singh and Brian Cox are producing the project along with Moisés Cosio and Alejandro Saevich of Detalle Films in Mexico. According to Variety, the Kite remake will be an action film about a young woman with financial troubles. A corrupt security force that had been selling young women murders her police officer father. The woman teams up with her father's former partner to uncover the mystery of his death, unaware she was betrayed from the start. Film Business Asia said that "Distant Horizon sources describe the new film as a 'full on female actioner' with 'gritty realistic action.'"

Director: Warner's Death Note Is Still in the Works posted on 2011-10-31 00:45 EDT

Iron Man 3's Shane Black: demon, main lead's downward spiral restored to scriptDirector Shane Black confirmed at his Long Beach Comic Con panel on Saturday that Warner Brothers' planned live-action film adaptation of Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata's manga Death Note is still in the works. However, Black added that the project was in jeopardy because the studio initially wanted to lose "the demon [Ryuk]. [They] don't want the kid to be evil…. They just kept qualifying it until it ceased to exist." Black said that "the creation of a villain, the downward spiral" of the main character Light has been restored in the script, and added that this is what the film should be about. Warner Brothers hired Black (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang; writer of the Lethal Weapon film series) to direct Death Note, shortly before Marvel Studios revealed that Black would also direct Iron Man 3. Anthony Bagarozzi and Charles Mondry were slated to write the Death Note project's script. Warner Bros. had acquired the rights to the series from previous rights-owner Vertigo Entertainment in 2009. At the time, screenwriter brothers Vlas and Charles Parlapanides were attached to the project.

Funimation's Joint Venture Signs Live-Action Film Distribution Deal posted on 2011-10-31 23:55 EDT
Intandem Films will collaborate with IFA Distribution, a joint venture between FUNimation Entertainment and American United Entertainment, to distribute about 20 lower-budget live-action thrillers, comedies, and faith-based films per year outside North America. As a Los Angeles-based distribution and acquisition company, IFA Distribution will finance the movies and distribute them in North America. Intandem currently holds about 40 titles. American United Entertainment chair Robert Rodriguez stated, "We expect this to be a longterm arrangement that helps build a strong catalog of features that can be exploited on digital outlets as well as traditional media." When asked how this may in the future involve anime films and series, Funimation noted, "At the present the main focus is live action, however that doesn't rule out the possibility that anime films or series maybe included at a later date."

Negima's Akamatsu Warns Against Changing Japan's Copyright Law posted on 2011-10-31 13:45 EDT
J-Comi's Ken Akamatsu: Modeling Japan after U.S. will 'destroy' dōjinshi, diminish manga industry
Ken Akamatsu, the creator of the Negima and Love Hina manga, warned on Monday that proposed changes to Japan's Copyright Law would "destroy" derivative dōjinshi (self-published) works, and he added that the power of the entire manga industry would diminish as a result. Kensaku Fukui, a lawyer and a Nihon University professor, wrote an Internet Watch essay about the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) talks that prompted Akamatsu's remarks. The Office of the United States Trade Representative describes the TPP as "an Asia-Pacific regional trade agreement currently being negotiated among the United States and eight other partners" (Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam). The agreement aims to make copyright laws uniform across all the signatory countries. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda will be attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit on November 12-13, and Japan's possible involvement in the TPP will be one of the topics discussed.

Formal Complaints Now Required for Enforcement

According to Fukui, if Japan joins the TPP, copyright violations will no longer be offenses which require a formal complaint from the injured party for prosecution. Under the current Copyright Law, the police and prosecutors cannot act against copyright infringement unless the copyright holders themselves file a complaint. The proposed changes under TPP would also allow statutory damages to be levied against defendants. The United States had asked Japan to make these changes in its Copyright Law in 2007, but opponents argued that if the changes were made, the culture developed through parody and dōjinshi works would be harmed. Akamatsu further argued that the changes "would destroy derivative dōjinshi" (or dōjinshi based on other creative works). He added, "And as a result, the power of the entire manga industry would also diminish."

Extending Copyright Terms
Fukui noted that the TPP would extend the term of copyright protection on creative works. Japan's current copyright laws protect the copyrights of a work for 50 years after the author's death — except for copyrights on cinematographic works, which last for 70 years after their first release. In the United States, copyright protection lasts for 70 years after the author's death, except for works of corporate authorship which are protected for 120 years after creation or 95 years after publication. The TPP aims to make copyright terms consistent across all countries that sign it.

Parallel Imports
Fukui further stated that the TPP, as proposed, would allow copyright holders to control parallel imports. Parallel imports are genuine, non-counterfeit items which are imported into other countries without the copyright holders' permission. For example, many companies ship anime discs and character goods out of Japan, while other companies ship North American anime DVDs and Blu-ray Discs into Japan to compete with more expensive Japanese releases. Under the TPP, copyright holders can stop or restrict these imports, and some copyright holders successfully argued that they already can.

Besides drawing manga, Ken Akamatsu also runs J-Comi, a site for releasing out-of-print manga online with the authors' permission. He has since added derivative dōjinshi — again, with the permission of both the original creators and the dōjinshi authors.

New Rurouni Kenshin Anime's Part I Slated for December 17 (Updated) posted on 2011-11-01 23:51 EDT
The December issue of Shueisha's Jump Square magazine is announcing on Friday that the first half of the new Rurouni Kenshin: Shin Kyoto-Hen anime project will open in two Japanese theaters on December 17. It will run for one week only at Tokyo's Cinema Sunshine Ikebukuro theater and Osaka's Cine-Libre Umeda theater. The creators are asking fans to name the anime's first installment, and the winner's own name will be listed in the ending credits.

All Nippon Entertainment Works Begins Film and Anime Production posted on 2011-11-02 23:58 EDT

Company planning and producing anime and films with Hollywood for international distribution
As a joint venture between Japanese anime industry members and Hollywood, the new All Nippon Entertainment Works anime and film company will begin operations this month. With an investment of 6 billion yen (about US$76.86 million) from the public-private partnership Innovation Network Corporation of Japan (INCJ), the company was established in October in order to support and promote Japan's contents industry. The Japanese-American partnership is aiming to produce Japanese anime and films based and release them with tie-ins such as games, books (including novels and manga), toys, and character goods in the international marketplace. The company will get rights for popular Japanese stories from their copyright holders and collaborate with American producers on tasks such as scriptwriting and directing the films and anime. All Nippon Entertainment Works plans to produce ten titles in its first three years with an investment of 3 billion yen (about US$38.43 million). Japanese "collaborative partner" companies announced in August include Asmik-Ace Entertainment, Dentsu, Fuji Television Network, Mitsubishi Corporation, Nikkatsu Corporation, Production I.G, TOHO-TOWA Company, Tokyo Broadcasting System Television, and the Tomy Company. As operations progress, All Nippon Entertainment Works plans to expand this list.

Hollywood Reporter: Keira Knightley Approached for Role in Akira Film posted on 2011-11-03 19:01 EDT
Tron: Legacy's Garrett Hedlund in negotiations with Warner for role of Kaneda
The Hollywood Reporter trade magazine's Heat Vision blog reported on Thursday that actress Keira Knightley (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pride & Prejudice, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest) has been approached for a role in Warner Bros.' live-action film adaptation of Akira. Hollywood Reporter did not mention which role Warner Bros. approached Knightley for. Hollywood Reporter also noted that Garrett Hedlund (Tron: Legacy, Country Strong, Friday Night Lights) is in negotiations with Warner Bros. for the role of Kaneda. The entertainment trade magazine Variety reported last month that Hedlund was a frontrunner for one of Akira's two male leads, but both the movie studio Warner Bros. and the director it hired, Jaume Collett-Serra (Unknown, Orphan, House of Wax) could not make an offer to the actor until the film had been green-lit. The Twitch entertainment news site reported last month that Gary Oldman (Sid and Nancy, Harry Potter films, Dark Knight trilogy) and Helena Bonham-Carter (A Room with a View, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, The King's Speech) had been offered the roles of Colonel and Lady Miyako, respectively. Hollywood Reporter noted that so far only Hedlund has engaged Warner Bros. in negotiations. Variety reported that production on the live-action film adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira manga is set to begin in late February or early March. According to the magazine, the film's current story goes as follows: "Set in New Manhattan, the cyberpunk sci-fi epic follows the leader of a biker gang who must save his friend, discovered with potentially destructive psychokinetic abilities, from government medical experiments.

No Anime Submitted for Animated Feature Oscar Nominations posted on 2011-11-04 23:29 EDT
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced on Friday that 18 films have been submitted for possible Oscar nominations in the Best Animated Feature category of the 84th Academy Awards. No Japanese-animated film was submitted this year, although the submitted films hail from several countries such as Australia, the Czech Republic, and Spain.

The 18 submitted features are:
The Adventures of Tintin
Alois Nebel
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked
Arthur Christmas
Cars 2
A Cat in Paris
Chico & Rita
Gnomeo and Juliet
Happy Feet Two
Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil
Kung Fu Panda 2
Mars Needs Moms
Puss in Boots
The Smurfs
Winnie the Pooh

Mamoru Hosoda and MADHOUSE's Summer Wars anime film was submitted last year, but was not nominated.

Hollywood Reporter: Warner Looks at 2 for Akira's Tetsuo posted on 2011-11-05 06:40 EDT
Ezra Miller
We Need To Talk About Kevin's Ezra Miller, Tetro's Alden EhrenreichThe Hollywood Reporter entertainment trade magazine reported on Friday that Ezra Miller and Alden Ehrenreich are among the top contenders for the pivotal role of Tetsuo in Warner Brothers' live-action film adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira manga. The magazine describes Tetsuo as "a young man with telekinetic abilities who becomes a dangerous weapon." 18-year-old Miller starred in the independent thriller We Need To Talk About Kevin and co-starred in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, the 2012 film that Stephen Chbosky is directing from his own novel. He also appeared in recurring roles in the television series Californication and Royal Pains.

Alden Ehrenreich
21-year-old Ehrenreich starred in Francis Ford Coppola's drama film Tetro in 2009. He also appeared in television guest roles in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Supernatural. Garrett Hedlund (Tron: Legacy) is in talks for the other lead role of Kaneda, which The Hollywood Reporter described as Tetsuo's "older brother and leader of a motorcycle gang" in Warner's film. The Twitch website and The Hollywood Reporter previously said that Helena Bonham Carter (The King's Speech), Gary Oldman (Dark Knight trilogy), and Keira Knightley (Pirates of the Caribbean films) have all been approached for roles. Another trade magazine, Variety, reported that Jaume Collett-Serra (Unknown, Orphan, House of Wax) is set to begin directing the live-action film adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira manga in late February or early March. According to Variety, the film's current story goes as follows: "Set in New Manhattan, the cyberpunk sci-fi epic follows the leader of a biker gang who must save his friend, discovered with potentially destructive psychokinetic abilities, from government medical experiments."

Man Sentenced for Uploading Gundam UC #3 on Nico Nico posted on 2011-11-07 04:29 EST
46-year-old to not serve prison time if he is not convicted again in next 3 yearsOn Monday, the Tachikawa branch of the Tokyo District Court sentenced 46-year-old Kenji Igarashi for uploading the third episode of Mobile Suit Gundam UC without permission to the video-sharing site Nico Nico Douga. Judge Haremitsu Mōri sentenced Igarashi to a one-year prison sentence, but suspended for three years. The prosecution had asked for a one-year prison sentence without suspension. If Imai is not convicted of another crime in the next three years, he will not have to serve the prison sentence. Mōri explained his sentence, "[The suspect's] carefree conduct demonstrated a problem with a normal awareness of the issues, and he seriously violated copyrights. However, he did not make profit out of it, and moreover, he regrets it." According to the decision, Igarashi uploaded the third volume of Sunrise's Mobile Suit Gundam UC, "The Ghost of Laplace," from his personal computer in his Nagano Prefecture home twice on March 7 and March 8. (The anime had just opened in Japanese theaters on March 5, and the Blu-ray Disc release was available for advance purchase at the theaters.)

Ghibli's Goro Miyazaki: Next Work May Come Around 2013 posted on 2011-11-07 08:30 EST
From Up on Poppy Hill director says his father Hayao Miyazaki is already working on itGoro Miyazaki, the director of this past summer's From Up on Poppy Hill (Kokuriko-Zaka Kara) anime film from Studio Ghibli, revealed on Saturday that the next work may come around 2013. He spoke on Friday to an audience of 180 at central Japan's Matsumoto City Museum of Art, which is holding an exhibit of Studio Ghibli layout art. Regarding the next work, Miyazaki said, "I think it'll be about two years from now. Actually, my dad [studio co-founder Hayao Miyazaki] has begun making it now. It's amazing." The younger Miyazaki happened to have graduated from the Agriculture Department of Matsumoto City's Shinshū University. He explained his choice of college by noting that he was in the mountain-climbing club in high school and that the university was close to the mountains. He added to the laughter of the audience that one more factor clinched the deal: the university's second entrance exam did not have a math section. From Up on Poppy Hill opened in Japan on July 16 and eventually became the highest-earning domestic film in Japan this year, although it made less money than most of the recent Ghibli films. The film is Goro Miyazaki's second directorial feature, after Tales from Earthsea. Kokuriko-Zaka Kara adapted a coming-of-age shōjo manga of the same name by Chizuru Takahashi and Tetsurō Sayama. Fellow Ghibli director and co-founder Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies, Only Yesterday) confirmed in September that he also has a new work that may be about two more years from being close to completion.

Voice Actor Ken Yamaguchi Passes Away at 55 posted on 2011-11-09 09:45 EST
Voice of Fist of the North Star's Ein, Sakigake!! Otoko Juku's Genji, St. Seiya's Tarantula Arakune, Dragon Quest's Flazzard

Voice actor Kiyohiro Yamaguchi and voice actress Midori reported that fellow voice actor Ken Yamaguchi passed away on October 24 due to illness. He was 55. Ken Yamaguchi's numerous roles include Ein in Fist of the North Star, Genji Togashi in Sakigake!! Otoko Juku, Flazzard in Dragon Quest: Dai no Daibōken, Ankoku Dragon/Tarantula Arakune/Heat Saint in Saint Seiya, Ashuraman/Prisman/The Omegaman in Kinnikuman: Kinnikusei Ōi Sōdatsu-hen, Blurr in the Japanese dub of Transformers, and Blueberry/Raspberry in Dragon Ball Z. His final posthumous project was voice work which will air later in the ongoing Soreike! Anpanman television series. Ken Yamaguchi was born under the name Kiyoshige Yamaguchi in 1956. He founded OYS Produce and Planning as a management agency for voice actors and actresses, particularly for newcomers training in the field. He was also the father of Kiyohiro Yamaguchi.

Artist K. Hachiya: Copyright Law Changes Would Affect Cosplay posted on 2011-11-09 20:30 EST
Kazuhiko Hachiya: If Japan joins TPP, police will have discretion on which cosplay to allow
Media artist Kazuhiko Hachiya warned on Monday that if Japan joins the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), the resulting changes in the Copyright Law of Japan would affect cosplay, among other derivative works (works based on other works). Hachiya spoke at a Nico Nico Live seminar on "How Would TPP Change the Net and Copyrights? An In-Depth Examination: From Extending Copyright Terms to Changing the Law to Allow Unilateral Enforcement and Statutory Damages." The Office of the United States Trade Representative describes the TPP as "an Asia-Pacific regional trade agreement currently being negotiated among the United States and eight other partners" (Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam). The agreement aims to make copyright laws uniform across all the signatory countries. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda will be attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Hawaii this weekend, and he is expected to announced on Thursday whether Japan will join the TPP talks. Hachiya's comments came after Kensaku Fukui, a lawyer and a Nihon University professor, wrote an essay on TPP's potential effects last month. Under the current law, the police and prosecutors cannot act against copyright infringement unless the copyright holders themselves file a formal complaint. Fukui asserted that under TPP, such violations will no longer require a complaint for prosecution. The proposed changes under TPP would also allow statutory damages to be levied against defendants. At the Monday seminar (during which Fukui also spoke), Hachiya said that he fears that the police would be given the discretion on what to prosecute, particularly on "erotic" material. He further asserted that even cosplay outfits can been prosecuted if the police decides that they are not allowed. Critics of the TPP assert that the part of Japanese culture developed through parody, dōjinshi works, and similar derivative works would be harmed. Negima and Love Hina manga creator Akamatsu further argued that the changes "would destroy derivative dōjinshi." He added, "And as a result, the power of the entire manga industry would also diminish."

Man Arrested for Uploading SoraOto, Kono S o, Miyo! Manga via Share Program posted on 2011-11-10 23:55 EST
On November 7, police in Gifu Prefecture arrested a 49-year-old male company worker from the prefecture's Ibi District on suspicion of using the Share file-sharing software to upload manga online without the copyright holders' permission. According to the Association of Copyright for Computer Software (ACCS), the suspect uploaded the 11th volume of the Sora no Otoshimono and the 2nd volume of Kono S o, Miyo! around June 17. According to the police investigation, the suspect also uploaded an animation program via Share and said under deposition that he uploaded because he wanted to let people know about these titles.

Japan to Join Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Talks posted on 2011-11-11 09:00 EST Prime minister decides before APEC summit, despite concerns in copyrights, agricultureThe Japanese government decided on Friday to participate in the negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a pact between several nations that could affect copyrights along with agriculture, financial services, and many other areas of the economy. Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is heading to this weekend's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Hawaii. There, he will meet with U.S. President Barack Obama and the heads of other nations, including the eight other TPP partners (Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam). Noda had delayed the government's decision on whether to join the talks by one day, as debate continued not only in the national legislature, but also within Noda's own Democratic Party of Japan and among regular citizens. Noda's administration argued that TPP would stimulate Japan's economy with more international trade with less tariffs and other restrictions. Much of the media coverage focused on the effects that TPP and the possible increase of imports will have on Japanese farmers, but some critics also raised concerns about copyrights and other areas. Kensaku Fukui, a lawyer and a Nihon University professor, argued last month that the TPP could extend copyright terms and change the Copyright Law of Japan to allow unilateral enforcement by the police, as well as statutory damages. Negima and Love Hina manga creator Ken Akamatsu further argued that the changes "would destroy derivative dōjinshi" (or self-published works based on other creative works) and that "the power of the entire manga industry would also diminish." Media artist Kazuhiko Hachiya warned that even cosplay could be affected along with other derivative works.

Twitch Site: Colin Firth Offered Villain Role in Oldboy Remake posted on 2011-11-11 16:07 EST
The King's Speech actor offered role as Adrian in Spike Lee's remake film
The Twitch film website reported on Friday that actor Colin Firth (The King's Speech, A Single Man, Love Actually) has been offered the villain role of Adrian in Spike Lee's remake of Park Chan-Wook's live-action film Oldboy. Twitch noted that Firth was at one point slated to play a role in Chan-wook's English-language film Stoker, but that did not work out. Director Spike Lee (Do the Right Thing, Jungle Fever, Malcolm X) signed onto Mandate Pictures' American remake of Oldboy in July, and Josh Brolin is slated to play the male lead. Park's film was itself inspired by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi's manga Old Boy. Last month, a writer for the entertainment trade magazine Variety reported that Mandate Pictures is still filling its female led role for the film since Rooney Mara (The Social Network, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo remake) passed on it. Mandate Pictures is developing the project with producers Doug Davison and Roy Lee (The Ring, Dark Water [2005], Death Note and Godzilla remake plans) of Vertigo Entertainment and Lee's 40 Acres & A Mule Productions. Mark Protosevich (Thor, I Am Legend) wrote a script, and Mandate Pictures President Nathan Kahane is serving as executive producer. The trade magazine Variety earlier described the Korean film's story about "a man who's kidnapped and imprisoned for 15 years. When he's finally released and begins looking into the reason for his captivity, he soon finds out that his kidnapper has even more torturous plans for him." (The original manga has the protagonist imprisoned for a different number of years and does not have the Korean film's added plot twist ending.)

Nicolas Cage & Nicole Kidman Got Roughed Up Making 'Trespass' October 8th, 2011 9:00am EDT
Joel Schumacher was glad to have a military medic on the set of his new film "Trespass" because his "intense" stars were always getting injured. The director reveals Cam Gigandet, Nicolas Cage and Nicole Kidman were left battered and bruised following the film's most dramatic and violent scenes - and he was glad there was someone nearby who could stitch them up. Schumacher tells WENN, "I was gonna put a card at the end of the movie saying, 'No animals were hurt making this movie but every actor in it was!' "Nic (Cage) got a very mild concussion when Ben (Mendelsohn) slammed him on the floor in one scene at the beginning and Ben cut his eye open in another scene. Nicole was just black, blue and purple (bruised). Cam smashed this subzero refrigerator so hard in frustration he ripped the top of his hand off. "We always had a medic, who was an ex-military medic, on set just in case anyone got hurt. There were accidents and no one planned them but when you have actors with this intensity they don't stop; they get lost in it." And it was Kidman, who plays the victim of Gigandet and Mendelsohn's violent intruders in the film, who was the one calling for her male co-stars to treat her rough. Schumacher adds, "Nicole felt sometimes they weren't being rough enough with her and her character could've gotten away, so she would say to them, 'No, that's not hard enough.' "There's a scene where Jordana Spiro, who plays Ben's stripper girlfriend, is holding a gun on her and she is grabbing her by the hair and I remember after the first take Nicole said to Jordana, 'You know, you have to grab my hair much harder because I can pull away from you.' Nicole was great. I was not crazy about her doing her own stunts but she was down for it."

Sony Wins Rights For A Steve Jobs Movie October 8th, 2011 9:25am EDT
Well, that didn't take long. The Pixar visionary and co-founder of Apple died only two days ago and already Hollywood has the ball rolling with the inevitable biography film. Oddly enough, it is Sony Pictures (not Disney or even Pixar) that has snagged the feature film rights to the upcoming biography, "Steve Jobs," according to Deadline. "Steve Jobs" is an authorized biography by former CNN chairman and Time Magazine managing editor Walter Isaacson. The book was originally supposed to be published on Nov. 21 but Simon & Schuster has (not surprisingly) moved it up to Oct. 24. The 448-page profile is based on over 40 interviews with the Apple co-founder and over 100 conversations with friends, family members, colleagues and competitors. Actually, Sony is the perfect studio for this, having turned business-minded and tech-heavy true-life books into terrific pieces of mainstream entertainment with both "The Social Network" and "Moneyball." So who's going to play Steve Jobs? Noah Wyle ("Donnie Darko") played him back in 1999 in the kind of goofy "Pirates of Silicon Valley" (which also starred Anthony Michael Hall as Bill Gates) and Mark Neveldine (yes, one of the co-directors of the "Crank" movies) played him in the 2001 short film, "Golden Dreams." Our first choice? Tom Cruise. He's got Jobs' energy and charisma and the same twinkle in his eye. Plus, if you work the lighting just right, they kind of look alike, too. If the "Mission: Impossible" star is unavailable, the chameleon-like Christian Bale would be interesting in the role. As would Ralph Fiennes. And, come to think of it, Ryan Gosling's not a bad choice, either. Well, like Sony, we're getting a little ahead of ourselves. But let the speculative iCasting begin nonetheless.

Aaron Eckhart To Star In 'I, Frankenstein' October 10th, 2011 8:12am EDT
Aaron Eckhart
Aaron Eckhart is set to pile on the prosthetics to play Frankenstein's monster in a re-imagining of Mary Shelley's classic story. The Dark Knight star has signed up to appear in I, Frankenstein, a new film based on Underworld co-creator Kevin Grevioux's graphic novel of the same name, which sees Shelley's monster having survived into the present day. The movie's screenwriter and director, Stuart Beattie, tells Variety, "Mary Shelley's story is about the creation of the first human being. This is the story about that being becoming human." Eckhart follows in the footsteps of Hollywood's most famous Frankenstein's monster, Boris Karloff, and Robert De Niro, who played the creature in 1994 film Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Filming of I, Frankenstein is due to begin in January in Australia.

Nicole Kidman's Sex Change Film Put On Hold After Another Actress Drops Out October 10th, 2011 8:30am EDT
Nicole Kidman's new film The Danish Girl has been shelved following the departure of actress Rachel Weisz, according to a U.K. report.The movie was due to star Kidman as Lili Elbe, the first person in the world to undergo a sex change, and Gwyneth Paltrow was initially signed up as the lead character's wife.Paltrow pulled out, as did her replacement Charlize Theron, and the project, backed by Kidman's Blossom Films company, was due to move forward with Weisz in the role. Filming was due to begin in Germany last month, but the movie has now reportedly been put on hold following the departure of Weisz and director Lasse Hallstrom. A source tells the Mail on Sunday, "Nicole initially approached Gwyneth Paltrow to play the artist's wife and fellow artist Gerda Gottlieb, but she was too busy. Charlize Theron then took the role but had to pull out because of scheduling conflicts. "Rachel Weisz signed up last year but now she's pulled out and the whole production has been thrown into disarray. Nicole is still determined to make this film, so she's gone back to the drawing board."

'Drive' Sued For Not Being 'Fast Five' October 10th, 2011 11:26am EDT

"Drive" is a lot of things -- a critically acclaimed showpiece for Ryan Gosling's star power, a moody meditation on the subtle powers of pop culture, one of the most popular films on the international festival circuit -- but there is one thing it definitely is not: "Fast Five."And that's a major problem, because according to The Hollywood Reporter, one film goer is so irritated that "Drive" is not "Fast Five" that she's decided to actually sue the film's distributors for misleading advertising. We s#!t you not. "Drive," which was released nationwide on September 16 after being nominated for the coveted Palme D'or at Cannes back in May, features Gosling as a Hollywood stunt driver who moonlights as a getaway man. While the film has only had modest box office success, critics have praised its slow burn look at a man whose soul is incrementally reawakened both by his relationship with a young woman (Carey Mulligan) and through the power of '80s pop. Michigan resident Sarah Deming, however, wanted more car chases. Distributor FilmDistrict "promoted the film 'Drive' as very similar to the "Fast and Furious," or similar, series of movies," the lawsuit read in part. "'Drive' bore very little similarity to a chase, or race action film… having very little driving in the motion picture," the suit continues. "'Drive' was a motion picture that substantially contained extreme gratuitous defamatory dehumanizing racism directed against members of the Jewish faith, and thereby promoted criminal violence against members of the Jewish faith."We're not entirely sure what she's talking about there at the end, but we have a feeling that Deming's lawsuit probably doesn't have a whole lot of a chance either way. If it does, though, we're ready. After all, we're still angry that "Green Lantern" wasn't "The Dark Knight" -- our lawyers are standing by.

John Travolta's 'Gotti' Film 'Put On Hold' October 10th, 2011 11:59am EDT
John Travolta's upcoming movie about the notorious Gotti family has been put on hold due to financial issues, according to a report. The Hollywood actor is due to star as late Mafia boss John Gotti, who died in prison in 2002, in upcoming movie Gotti: In the Shadow of My Father, alongside his real-life wife Kelly Preston and Al Pacino. Filming is slated to begin in January ahead of a 2012 release date, but a new report suggests production has been put on hold. reports work on the project has come to a halt and won't resume until more financing is secured. A source tells the website, "If (producer) Marc Fiore doesn't come up with money this week, and doesn't show that more is coming, and that he's really secured financing, it could all fall apart." The film's producers are also facing a legal battle with Goodfellas star Joe Pesci, who is suing bosses at Fiore Films over allegations he was offered a $3 million deal to play Angelo Ruggiero, an associate of Gotti, but was later told he would be given a smaller part.

Bryan Cranston Defends 'Total Recall' Remake October 10th, 2011 1:10pm EDT
Actor Bryan Cranston has defended movie bosses' decision to remake Total Recall, insisting the new film will be much "better" than the 1990 original. Cranston stars alongside Irish actor Colin Farrell, who takes over the role made famous by Arnold Schwarzenegger, in the new adaptation of Philip K. Dick story's We Can Remember It for You Wholesale. The Breaking Bad star insists the new script is better than the 1990 film and he is more confident in lead actor Farrell. He tells New York Magazine, "I don't think there is much of a challenge at all. I think the script is better. We certainly have a tremendous upgrade in our lead actor. That is less of a comment on Arnold (Schwarzenegger) and more of a comment on Colin (Farrell)." "The special effects over the last 20 years have grown exponentially, so that is going to be a heightened experience. And I just think it is an exciting movie. You know it's going to entertain - I can guarantee you that." The new Total Recall movie is slated for release in August next year.

Robert Downey, Jr. Says He Was 'Disappointed' By 'Iron Man 2' October 10th, 2011 2:16pm EDT
Robert Downey, Jr. has hailed Iron Man as the film that changed his life, but insists he found the superhero sequel "disappointing". The actor reaffirmed his place in the Hollywood A-list playing inventor-turned-superhero Tony Star in the 2008 film following a career slump due to years lost in drug addiction. Downey, Jr. is convinced the success of Iron Man turned his fortunes around, but he was less than impressed with its 2010 sequel, which opened to mixed reviews from critics. He tells the Los Angeles Times, "The first one changed everything for me. And with the second Iron Man there were certain aspects that were dissatisfying and disappointing to me but at least they lit me right." "(The first one) was a meditation on responsibility and an exploration of how a small group of people can take a two-dimensional idea and, if the winds are right, create something that makes people say, 'That was my favorite movie of the year'...   "I love a good action movie - a Steve McQueen or Tom Cruise or Clint Eastwood, Bruce Willis or Mel Gibson in the right spot, and you smile and say, 'That's what this kind of movie is all about.'" Downey, Jr. also admits he was surprised to land an Oscar nomination for his controversial 'blacked-up' role in 2008's Tropic Thunder, because he feared the part would undo all the hard work he put into Iron Man. He adds, "I signed up to do it and then I did Iron Man and I thought, 'You know, I think I just buried myself. I did a movie that is going to re-establish me here in a little way and now I'm going to squander any good will I have'... This movie ended up being the most cathartic thing I had done in ages and one of the happiest times in my life."

Hungarian Police Seize Illegal Guns From 'World War Z' Set October 10th, 2011 9:18pm EDT

Brad Pitt's World War Z film set was raided by Hungarian anti-terrorism authorities over the weekend after a cache of illegal guns were found in among the movie's props. Almost 100 unauthorized weapons were seized by police in Budapest, where the film is currently shooting. The haul included a collection of automatic assault rifles. Hajdu Janos, the director of Hungary's Anti-Terrorism Unit, tells, "Guns like these are highly illegal to transport even if they were to used as stage guns, which hopefully they weren't." It is not known how the weapons ended up on the set of the film.

Stage Collapse On 'Resident Evil 5' Set, 16 Zombies Injured October 11th, 2011 2:23pm EDT
A number of extras and crewmembers working on director Paul W.S. Anderson's new Resident Evil film have been hospitalized following a set collapse in Canada on Tuesday. Cameras stopped rolling on the Toronto set in the early hours of Tuesday when a wheeled platform inside the Cinespace Film Studios crashed to the ground, injuring actors dressed as zombies and four members of the production team. Emergency services were called to the scene, although they had trouble establishing how badly the actors had been hurt due to the fake bandages and blood they were covered with for their roles as the undead for the forthcoming fifth installment of the Resident Evil film franchise, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Ten of the victims were taken to a local hospital for further treatment, although none of the injuries are considered life-threatening, according to police reports. The sci-fi movie's star Milla Jovovich was not onset at the time of the accident, which claims is now being investigated by officials from the Toronto Police Department and the Ministry of Labor.

Javier Bardem To Play Next James Bond Bad Guy October 11th, 2011 8:18pm EDT
Spanish actor Javier Bardem has been confirmed as the villain in the new James Bond movie.
The Oscar winner has ended months of speculation by confirming he has signed up to play Daniel Craig's foe in the untitled 23rd 007 film. He tells ABC TV, "I am very excited. My parents took me to watch the movies, and I saw all of them, so to play that is going to be fun. They chose me to play this man, but I cannot give you many details.".

Jailed 'Austin Powers' Actor Suspected Of Killing Cell Mate October 11th, 2011 8:59pm EDT
Incarcerated Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery actor Joseph Hyuangmin Son is at the center of a prison investigation following the murder of his cell mate. Just last month, Son, who played Random Task in the Austin Powers film, was sentenced to life in prison for his part in the abduction and a gang rape of a woman on Christmas Eve, 1990 - and now he's facing new legal problems as the prime suspect in the killing of a 50-year-old sex offender. According to, officials found the man's body at the Wasco State Prison in California on Monday.

James Bond Villain/Giant Richard Kiel Can No Longer Walk October 13th, 2011 9:20am EDT
Bond baddie Richard Kiel has been reduced to life in a wheelchair because his balance has been destroyed.
The 7 foot 2 inches movie giant, who played Jaws opposite Roger Moore in "The Spy Who Loved Me" and "Moonraker," admits his size and a 1992 car accident have wrecked his ability to walk. Kiel, 72, tells the Globe, "Little by little I started losing my auto balance. We balance with our toes without thinking and a toddler learns that through trial and error. I became like a 320-pound toddler."

Johnny Depp's 'Lone Ranger' Project Moving Forward Again October 13th, 2011 10:30am EDT
Johnny Depp's axed "The Lone Ranger" movie is back in the saddle after Disney bosses made adjustments to the massive budget, according to reports. The "Pirates of the Caribbean" hunk was slated to play Tonto opposite Armie Hammer's Lone Ranger in the Disney adaptation of the classic TV show.However, in August, Disney chiefs axed their involvement in the film following alleged disagreements with director Gore Verbinski and producer Jerry Bruckheimer over the western's finances. Bosses at the film giant have now given the movie the go-ahead after the budget was brought down from $275 million to $215 million, according to Depp insists he expected studio executives to take their time agreeing the deal, and he is glad the project is finally moving forward. He tells, "We knew that the budget was going to be huge initially, and we also knew that it was going to be shut down for a while, and it was kind of like we patiently wait - we shave a little bit here, we do a little bit there, (and) they fix it."

Milla Jovovich Visits 'Resident Evil' Extra In Hospital After Set Accident October 14th, 2011 6:10pm EDT
An actress who damaged her back in an accident on the set of the upcoming fifth Resident Evil movie has taken her first steps as she recovers from her injuries. Several actors dresed as zombies and four members of the production team were hurt when a platform used for a chase sequence crashed to the ground at Canada's Cinespace Film Studios on Tuesday. The injured were taken to local hospitals for treatment and subsequently released - except one actress, named April, who hurt her back and remained under doctors' care. The franchise's star Milla Jovovich visited April on Tuesday night and has been keeping her Twitter followers updated on her condition - and she's revealed the actress is responding well to treatment. In a series of posts on the social networking site, Jovovich writes, "She was out of bed and walking about 2 day which is such great news! What a strong woman, could give me some lessons! "(Her brother) told me that the doctor hadn't seen her after the preliminary examination, which I hope is a good sign. She is on pain meds and staying in bed at the best fracture/injury hospital in [T]oronto."She texted me yesterday to say that she was feeling stronger and wanted to recover quickly for her family and friends! She's so amazing!"

Aaron Eckhart To Play Beach Boys' Dennis Wilson In Biopic October 17th, 2011 11:28am EDT
Aaron Eckhart has landed the leading role in a new biopic about tragic Beach Boys star Dennis Wilson.
The Dark Knight actor will embark on drumming lessons to perfect his transformation as Wilson in Randall Miller's new film The Drummer, which charts the last six years of the rocker's life. Eckhart, who bears an uncanny resemblance to the Beach Boy, will also sing and play piano in the film, which will start shooting in California early in 2012. Wilson drowned in Marina del Rey, California in 1983, shortly after he completed work on what was to become his masterpiece album, Pacific Ocean Blue. Director Miller insists his leading man is the perfect choice to play Wilson, telling WENN, "Aaron is such a finely nuanced actor who is supremely dedicated to getting at the essence of who this rock star was. It is going to be an exciting and emotional journey." Wilson's children Carl and Jennifer have signed on as co-producers and the film is being made with the family's blessing. It's not the first time Wilson has been portrayed by an actor on screen - Chris Jacobs played him in Helter Skelter and Bruce Greenwood was Wilson in TV movie Summer Dreams: The Story of the Beach Boys. More casting details will be announced in the coming weeks, including who will play former Fleetwood Mac star Christine McVie, Wilson's one-time lover.

Stan Lee To Receive VES' Lifetime Achievement Award October 19th, 2011 4:10pm EDT

Comic book legend Stan Lee is to be honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Visual Effects Society (VES) next year. The beloved co-creator of Spider-Man, Fantastic Four and X-Men will follow in the footsteps of George Lucas, Steven Spielberg and James Cameron, who have all previously been handed the trophy. VES chairman Jeffrey Okun announced the honor on Tuesday, saying, "Stan Lee's imagination has created a completely original and profitable niche in the entertainment world and has allowed visual effects to flex its muscle in service to it." Lee will pick up the prize at the VES Awards at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles on February 7th.

Mickey Rourke Drops Out Of 'Expendables 2' October 20th, 2011 11:25am EDT
Actor Mickey Rourke has dropped out of the new Expendables movie to work alongside Colin Farrell on Seven Psychopaths, according to reports. The Wrestler star, who played Tool in the first film in Sylvester Stallone's action franchise, was expected to resurrect his character again in 2012's The Expendables 2, alongside Jason Statham, Bruce Willis and Jean-Claude Van Damme. But, now Rourke has decided to walk away from the film due to the low pay check and is in negotiations to star in Martin McDonagh's movie instead, according to Farrell takes the lead in the project about a struggling screenwriter who helps kidnap a gangster's dog.

Bradley Cooper The Latest Actor Linked To 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.' October 21st, 2011 8:43am EDT
Bradley Cooper has been offered the chance to replace Robert Vaughn as "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." after George Clooney dropped out, according to a report. Steven Soderbergh is set to remake the classic TV show for the big screen, and Clooney reportedly signed up to step into the role of Napoleon Solo, made famous by Vaughn. However, Clooney has since exited the project and the director has now offered the part to "The Hangover" star Cooper, according to Variety. The film is reportedly set to start shooting in the spring.

Eminem's Boxing Film Greenlit Again After Being Put On Hold October 22nd, 2011 11:15am

Eminem's boxing movie Southpaw is back in the Hollywood ring two months after DreamWorks film bosses put the project on hold. MGM executives have reportedly picked up the Antoine Fuqua film, which will feature the rapper as a welterweight fighter. The film, which is set to start shooting next year, will be Eminem's first since his breakthrough in 2002 rap drama 8 Mile.

Eric Bana To Play Elvis Presley In Cary Elwes' Directorial Debut October 24th, 2011 12:14pm EDT
Eric Bana is set to brush up on his rock 'n' roll skills to play Elvis Presley in a new movie.
The Australian actor will tackle the role of The King in Cary Elwes' directorial debut, Elvis & Nixon, which is based on a real-life meeting between Presley and U.S. President Richard Nixon at the White House in 1970. Bana will also co-produce the production, which was co-written by Elwes. Danny Huston is said to be in final negotiations to play Nixon in the film, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

'Tintin' Fan Lands Job With Steven Spielberg October 24th, 2011 10:31pm EDT

An enterprising Tintin fan has been handed the job of a lifetime by Steven Spielberg after impressing the moviemaker with his inspirational take on the opening credits for the director's new film. James Curran posted his idea for an animated opening sequence for Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin online and the mogul saw it. Impressed, Spielberg invited Curran to the U.K. premiere of the film on Sunday - and then offered him a job on his next movie. The Adventures of Tintin screenwriter Edgar Wright tweeted the news during the premiere and sources close to the director claim he will work with Curran on Robopocalypse.

Eddie Murphy: 'I'm Gonna Be The Worst Oscars Host Ever' October 24th, 2011 11:55pm EDT
Eddie Murphy is lowering the expectations of Oscars fans by insisting he'll be the worst host ever when he takes charge of the show next year.The funnyman was confirmed as the host of the 84th Academy Awards last month, but he's urging fans not to get their hopes up - because he'll be terrible. The Dreamgirls star jokes, "I think it's so funny that people think I'm perfect for this because I'm going to be horrendous. I'm gonna be the worst host that's ever hosted the show. "I'm gonna stand there and it's just gonna be, 'And now Clint Eastwood...' - me introducing people. And I'm gonna wear a powder sky blue tuxedo and, at the end of the evening, I'm gonna urinate on myself in front of a billion people."

Sylvester Stallone Sued For Copyright Infringement Over 'The Expendables' October 26th, 2011 8:37am EDT
Veteran action man Sylvester Stallone has been accused of stealing ideas for his The Expendables movie from another screenwriter. The Hollywood tough guy co-wrote the script for the 2010 movie, which united him with action stars including Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger. However, he is now facing legal action from screenwriter Marcus Webb, who has filed a lawsuit in New York alleging The Expendables is based on his script for a project called The Cordoba Caper. The lawsuit, filed in Manhattan Federal Court on Tuesday, alleges Stallone's movie is "strikingly similar and in some places identical" to Webb's work and demands unspecified damages for copyright infringement as well as an injunction to stop work on The Expendables sequel, according to Reuters.

Samuel L. Jackson Is The Highest-Grossing Actor Of All Time October 26th, 2011 1:00pm EDT

Samuel L. Jackson is big news at the box office - his movies have pulled in $7.4 billion during his career.
The actor has appeared in more than 100 movies since his big break in Spike Lee's 1991 movie "Jungle Fever," and his hard work has paid off - he is the highest-grossing actor of all time, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Thanks to hits such as "Jurassic Park" ($914 million), "Pulp Fiction" ($212 million) and the "Star Wars" prequels ($2.4 billion), Jackson is top of the Hollywood pile, with his films outstripping the competition at the box office. He has averaged four films a year over the last 20 years, making six in 2010, four in 2011 and signing up for three next year. 'Beverly Hills Cop' TV Series In The Works? October 26th, 2011 2:23pm EDT
Eddie Murphy is developing a new TV show about his Beverly Hills Cop character Axel Foley's son. The funnyman has ruled out a return to the big screen for a fourth Beverly Hills Cop movie, but he insists the franchise is far from dead - and he's planning on making cameos in the TV series. He tells the new issue of Rolling Stone magazine, "What I'm trying to do now is produce a TV show starring Axel Foley's son, and Axel is the chief of police now in Detroit. I'd do the pilot, show up here and there." Murphy admits there was talk about a Beverly Hills Cop IV but "none of the movie scripts were right." He adds, "It was trying to force the premise. If you have to force something, you shouldn't be doing it. It was always a rehash of the old thing. It was always wrong."

Stuntman Killed On 'Expendables 2' Set October 28th, 2011 8:12am EDT
A stuntman working on Sylvester Stallone's The Expendables sequel has died following an accident on set, and a second man is in a critical condition in the hospital. The movie follow-up, starring Stallone alongside Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jean-Claude Van Damme, is currently being filmed in Bulgaria, but the shoot came to a halt on Thursday after a stunt went badly wrong. The film crew was shooting an explosion scene at the Ognyanovo reservoir, close to the capital city of Sofia, when tragedy struck. One man was killed and another was taken to the hospital, where he was in a critical condition as WENN went to press, and local police have launched an investigation into the incident, according to A statement from production company Nu Image/Millennium Films reads, "It is with great regret that we confirm this unfortunate accident. Our hearts go out to the families and those on the production affected by this tragedy. The filmmakers are working closely with the authorities in responding to and investigating this accident."

Sean Penn To Direct Robert De Niro October 29th, 2011 9:15am EDT
Sean Penn is to step back behind the camera to direct Robert De Niro in "The Comedian."
The Oscar winner, who last directed a film in 2007 when he took charge of "Into The Wild," will adapt Art Linson and Jeffrey Ross' screenplay about a comic sentenced to community service for lashing out at a heckler. Shooting is scheduled to begin next spring.

Hugh Jackman Cried While Watching 'Real Steel' November 3rd, 2011 8:35am EDT
Hugh Jackman is a big supporter of his latest movie "Real Steel" because he found it moving watching the father-and-son, robot boxing drama with his family. The X-Men star admits he rarely watches his own movies but he felt compelled to check out the action film with a heart with his kids - and now he can understand why real men across the world are tearing up as they check out the hit. He says, "I cried a little bit... It's the first time my kids have seen one of my movies, so I watched it with them and my wife and my mother-in-law. At one point, we all had a tear rolling down our faces. "I looked over at my son and he said, 'Dad, please, it's embarrassing enough that you're crying, don't look at me.'"
Berenice Marlohe

New Bond Girl Berenice Marlohe Looks Red Hot At 'Skyfall' Photocall November 3rd, 2011 10:30am EDT | By: Noelle Talmon
Daniel Craig, Naomie Harris, and Berenice Marlohe attended the photocall for "Skyfall," the 23rd James Bond movie, in London today. The film's official title was released at the event. Berenice is a French actress who has starred primarily on TV shows in her native country. Film execs recently scrapped plans to shoot a high-action train sequence in India. They chose to film the scenes in South Africa after negotiations fell through. "Skyfall" also stars Javier Bardem, Judi Dench, Ralph Fiennes, and Albert Finney. The film is set for release in November 2013.

Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart And Taylor Lautner Immortalize 'Twilight' On Hollywood Walk Of Fame November 4th, 2011 12:50am EDT | By: Kevin Blair
Twilight stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner have immortalized the film saga with a hand an footprint ceremony outside infamous Grauman's Chinese theater in downtown Hollywood. Late night TV host Jimmy Kimmel and the series' author Stephenie Meyer introduced the stars to droves of screaming fans on Thursday morning.The saga's three biggest stars got their hands dirty in cement and were humbled by the experience. "This is incredibly scary... This is such an incredible honor," said Pattinson. "How young we are? It's kind of ridiculous and amazing at the same time." While Stewart said it was "the collest thing I've ever done in my life. "This is insane that I'm doing this." "Your [fans] support is unreal and we wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for you. There are a few moments that mean so much — it's really even hard to explain, and this is definitely one of those. This is really like a dream," said Lautner. reported that Pattinson also revealed that he may have screwed up his prints during the event. "Not only was I wearing shoes too big for me, but I put my hands in the wrong place so I'm going to have the most stupid-looking prints... It's going to look like a yeti," he says. The three stars reprise their roles as Edward, Bella and Jacob once again on November 18th, when the latest installment of the Twilight Saga, "Breaking Dawn - Part 1" hits theaters.

'Dark Knight Rises' Shoots Riot Scene In NYC November 4th, 2011 8:40am EDT
Chaos descended on the streets of New York City this week as director Christopher Nolan filmed riot scenes for his new Batman movie. Shocked bystanders watched as a crowd of extras and actors waving fake guns charged along a Manhattan road in a scene for The Dark Knight Rises, which stars Christian Bale as the Caped Crusader.Almost 1,000 extras, along with actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt wearing a Gotham City Police Department uniform, took part in the shoot close to the city's financial district. Filming will continue in the area over the weekend and posters have been put up around the neighborhood by producers, warning residents to expect fake gunfire in the next few days, according to The notice from Subconscious Productions reads, "The scenes we will be filming will have simulated gunfire and automatic weapon fire. Be assured, we are working in close cooperation with the NYPD Movie and Television Unit as well as the FDNY." The film, which also stars Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman, is due for release in July 2012.

Chris Hemsworth Knocked Out By Kristen Stewart On 'Snow White' Set November 4th, 2011 4:51pm EDT
Movie tough guy Chris Hemsworth is nursing a black eye and busted nose after he was knocked out by Kristen Stewart on the set of Snow White And The Huntsman. The Twilight actress plays the lead role in the upcoming fantasy film, alongside Hemsworth as The Huntsman. Filming had to be postponed last month after Stewart tore a ligament in her hand during a fight scene with dwarves, but the star admits she isn't the only one suffering from an injury - she accidentally punched Thor hunk Hemsworth in the face. During an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on Thursday, she explained, "It made such a sound. It was in a scene. Girls, if you've ever wondered if it (punching) works, it works! It literally spun him right around! I was supposed to miss him..." "I basically knocked him right out of his close up (shot). I was (crouched) down and he was over me, 'huntsman-ing' out, (and I made) just really good contact. And I could hear the cameramen go, 'Woah!'." However, Stewart insists she wasn't proud of herself after accidentally hitting her co-star: "I'm not proud though. Instantly, tears sprung to my eyes. Like, 'Ahh, are you OK?' But it will definitely be in the movie." Asked if Hemsworth has a black eye, Stewart nodded, adding, "And a big lump on his nose!"

Jennifer Lopez To Play Carmen Sandiego On The Big Screen November 5th, 2011 11:30am EDT
Jennifer Lopez has reportedly bought the film rights to videogame franchise Carmen Sandiego, and plans to play the criminal in a new action movie.The enigmatic, red-coated character has already been turned into an animated series and now Lopez is keen to bring her to the big screen, according to The website reports Lopez is currently attached to the project, titled "Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego," as a producer.

Benicio Del Toro To Be Next 'Star Trek' Bad Guy? November 6th, 2011 2:00pm EST
Director J.J. Abrams has handpicked Benicio Del Toro to be the villain in his upcoming Star Trek sequel, according to a new report. The filmmaker has met with the star about the as-yet-untitled-project, but refused to provide exact details about the role in an effort to keep the script a secret, reports Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Simon Pegg and Zachary Quinto are all expected to reprise their roles when productions begins in early 2012.

Roger Moore Bashes Daniel Craig And Sean Connery's James Bonds November 6th, 2011 6:21pm EST
Roger Moore has taken aim at fellow James Bonds Sean Connery and Daniel Craig in a new interview.
The British actor, who portrayed 007 in seven films between 1973 and 1985, admits he hasn't always been a fan of the spy franchise. He tells Varsity he thought the latest Bond film, Daniel Craig's Quantum of Solace, was "a long, disjointed commercial" and he pokes fun at his predecessor, Scottish star Connery. Moore says, "Sean is a great actor. It's a pity I can't understand what he's saying."

No Harrison Ford For New 'Blade Runner' Movie November 7th, 2011 11:44am EST
Ridley Scott has confirmed his new Blade Runner movie will go ahead without original star Harrison Ford.
The Indiana Jones actor took on the lead role in the cult 1982 film, based on a Philip K. Dick novel, playing a retired detective hired to track down a group of androids passing themselves off as human. Scott recently revealed he is working on a sequel, but he has now confirmed Blade Runner will be back with a whole new cast. The director tells the Wall Street Journal the project is moving forward "not with the past cast, of course," and when asked whether Ford's character of Rick Deckard will feature, Scott replies, "No, not really."

Jessica Chastain To Play Princess Diana? November 7th, 2011 3:30pm EST

The Help star Jessica Chastain is set to play the late Princess Diana in an upcoming movie about the British royal's life, according to a new report. The redhead will lead the cast of Caught in Flight after beating out Pirates of the Caribbean star Keira Knightley for the role, reports industry website The controversial project is set to focus on the late royal's rumored two-year love affair with a heart surgeon in the mid-1990s. The script was penned by British playwright Stephen Jeffreys and the movie is due to begin shooting in March, 2012.

Batman Occupies Wall Street, November 7th, 2011 11:23pm EST | By: Kevin Blair

Dark Knight Rises
Chances are, if you're anything like us you can't wait until July 20, 2012 when The Dark Knight Rises comes to theaters, wrapping up Christopher Nolan's intense Batman trilogy. The film's star, Christian Bale, was spotted donning a "new and improved" Batsuit while filming scenes on Wall Street in New York City on Monday. He was joined by co-stars Matthew Modine, who plays a corrupt cop named Nixon, and Tom Hardy who plays Bat super-villain Bane. During the filming of one scene, several "Tumblers" - the desert-camouflaged version of the Batmobile - were spotted on the street during a key Gotham City battle (if you recall Batman asked Lucius Fox [Morgan Freeman] if the car came in black in Batman Begins). And in addition to the near 1,000 extras and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who plays one of Batman's allies, Catwoman was also spotted. Anne Hathaway, who plays the foxy feline, wasn't spotted, but her stunt double provided all her action on a cycle that looks quite similar to the Batpod from The Dark Knight. We're not sure how Batman would feel about #OccupyWallStreet though. Consider that his alter ego, Bruce Wayne, would fall in the "1%." A video shot from the balcony of a nearby apartment by YouTube user deannabreglia, who lives in the area and has several clips posted to her YouTube page. According to Deanna, the code name for the film while in production is "Magnus Rex." In that case, we can't wait until "Magnus Rex" hits theaters on July 20th.

Adam Sandler's Star Power Prompts Movie Studio To Cut Down Palm Tree November 8th, 2011 6:53pm EST
Funnyman Adam Sandler learned how powerful he is in Hollywood when his comical complaints about a palm tree blocking a poster for his new film prompted studio bosses to chop it down. The Happy Gilmore star was driving through the city when he spotted the tree partly obscuring a billboard advertising Jack & Jill, which features Sandler in character as male and female twins. He explains, "There was a palm tree with the leaves going across on the girl character and it looked like a mustache and it was right near Sony (studio's headquarters). "I told them... they had a mustache on me with a palm tree and the next day they cut the tree down. I was like, 'What the hell did you do that for?'"

Eddie Murphy Quits As Oscars Host November 9th, 2011 2:54pm EST

Eddie Murphy has quit as Oscars host a day after pal Brett Ratner resigned as the big event's producer.
The Rush Hour director stepped down over a homophobic slur he made during a movie question-and-answer session last week and now the funnyman Ratner signed on to present the Academy Awards has followed him out the door. A statement from Murphy, released on Wednesday morning, reads, "First and foremost I want to say I completely understand and support each party's decision with regard to a change of producers for this year's Academy Awards ceremony. I was truly looking forward to being a part of the show that our production team and writers were just starting to develop, but I'm sure that the new production team and host will do an equally great job." Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences president Tom Sherak has responded to the news by stating, "I appreciate how Eddie feels about losing his creative partner, Brett Ratner, and we all wish him well." Ratner's fellow Oscars producer Don Mischer and his team are expected to make an announcement about a replacement host in the coming days. The Academy Awards ceremony will take place in Hollywood on February 26th.

Brian Grazer Replaces Brett Ratner As Oscars Producer November 10th, 2011 9:52am EST

Movie mogul Brian Grazer is to replace Brett Ratner as the co-producer of the 84th annual Oscars. Ratner resigned on Tuesday over a homophobic slur he used during a movie question-and-answer session with fans on Friday and his pal Eddie Murphy stepped down as host on Wednesday. Officials at the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences aren't wasting any time in naming their new man - Grazer's appointment was released on Wednesday afternoon. It still isn't clear who will host the Academy Awards next year, but movie producer and Oscar winner Grazer has a long history with Tom Hanks, who is one of the people's favorites to front the show. He has also produced films starring Jim Carrey and Murphy and he is also, ironically, the man behind Murphy and Ratner's new film "Tower Heist." Announcing the news, Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences President Tom Sherak states, "Brian Grazer is a renowned filmmaker who over the past 25 years has produced a diverse and extraordinary body of work. He will certainly bring his tremendous talent, creativity and relationships to the Oscars." And Grazer adds, "It's very gratifying to be part of a show that honours excellence in the medium to which I have devoted so much of my career." Grazer has earned four Academy Award nominations. He won a Best Picture Oscar in 2001 for "A Beautiful Mind."

Fans Want Billy Crystal Or The Muppets To Host The Oscars November 10th, 2011 10:02am EST
Billy Crystal has emerged as the clear favorite to replace Eddie Murphy as Oscars host in a new online poll. asked film fans to vote for the star they'd like to see on the Academy Awards stage in February as soon as the news about Murphy quitting the show hit the headlines on Wednesday morning.Website editor Harry Medved tells WENN, "We put the poll up at 12 noon and we had over a thousand people voting in less than three hours." Crystal is the early favorite in the ongoing poll with 16 percent of the vote, while The Muppets are ranking second with 14 percent and Tom Hanks is a distant third with 8 percent. Also making the list were 2011 Golden Globe Awards host Ricky Gervais (7 percent) and former Oscars hosts Steve Martin and Whoopi Goldberg (both with 6 percent). Bridesmaids star Melissa McCarthy and comedians Dave Chapelle and Zach Galifianakis are also winning votes. Murphy quit as Oscars host a day after his pal Brett Ratner resigned as the show's producer over a homophobic slur he made during a movie question-and-answer session last week. Crystal has hosted the Oscars eight times. He last fronted the show in 2003.

Billy Crystal Announces Via Twitter That He's Hosting The Oscars November 10th, 2011 6:52pm EST
Billy Crystal appears to be ready to save the 2012 Oscars following Eddie Murphy's decision to step down as host after posting a comical tweet about the drama. The When Harry Met Sally star, who has hosted the Oscars eight times, emerged as the popular choice to replace Murphy hours after the Dreamgirls star announced his resignation on Wednesday following producer Brett Ratner's departure. And it seems Crystal's ready to take charge of his first Academy Awards since 2003. In a tweet on Thursday, Crystal joked, "Am doing the Oscars so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions. Looking forward to the show." Sources close to the Oscars tell the Los Angeles Times that Crystal will host the big show in February, but publicists for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have yet to make the news official. The funnyman was expected to be named the host of the 84th Oscars after making an appearance on the 2011 telecast to present a tribute to Bob Hope. Earlier this year, Crystal told reporters he felt "itchy" after his Academy Awards cameo - and he would be prepared to consider a return to the Oscars stage as host. He said, "It's always fun. It's really hard, but maybe one or two more times? I don't know. They know where I am." Ratner and co-producer Don Mischer hired Murphy in September instead - but now Crystal's wish may have just come true.
*UPDATE* - Crystal has officially been confirmed as the new host of the 2012 Oscars.

Daniel Radcliffe: 'I Was Allergic To The Harry Potter Glasses' November 11th, 2011 8:06am EST
Daniel Radcliffe's stint as Harry Potter almost ended before it even began after he realized he was allergic to the boy wizard's iconic spectacles just days into filming the first movie. The British actor landed the lead role in the franchise as an 11 year old and after his first week on the set of the 2001 film, Radcliffe realized he was suffering a nasty skin problem. He tells Digital Spy, "We put the glasses on and eventually we realized I was allergic to them. I was allergic to the Harry Potter glasses because these two rings of whiteheads and spots had come up around my eyes. It took us about a week to realize that it was actually the glasses." The author of the Potter books, J.K. Rowling, is pleased the allergy didn't put her off casting Radcliffe. She jokes, "It's lucky neither of us believe in signs, isn't it?"

David Schwimmer To Play Mafia Contract Killer In 'The Iceman' November 11th, 2011 8:14am EST
Former Friends star David Schwimmer will ditch his good guy image to play a Mafia contract killer in a violent new film about Richard 'The Iceman' Kuklinski. The actor/director, who played nice guy Ross Geller in the hit sitcom will portray Jack Rosethal opposite Ray Liotta's Mafia's boss in The Iceman. The titular character will be played by Revolutionary Road star Michael Shannon, according to Daily Variety. Kuklinski claimed to have killed more than 250 people between 1948 and 1986. Maggie Gyllenhaal will also appear in the film.

Steve Carell Goes Crazy For 'Lunatics' November 11th, 2011 12:39pm EST
Steve Carell has built a career out of playing some less-than-average characters, but his latest film role has him turning into a real head case. Collider reports that Carell has signed on to star as Philip Horkman, a pet store owner and soccer ref, in "Lunatics," the film adaptation of Dave Barry and Alan Zweibel's novel of the same name. The movie tells the story of two soccer dads who find themselves at the center of escalating insanity when they cross paths, not limited to running from the law, the government, and a guy in a Chuck E. Cheese costume. Carell has been keeping busy since leaving "The Office," with roles in "Burt Wonderstone," "Dogs of Babel," "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World," "Foxcatcher" and "Despicable Me 2" all lined up for the next few years. "Lunatics" is being produced by Carell and his partners at Carousel Productions.

'Community' Will Have To Deal With John Goodman's New Hair November 11th, 2011 1:20pm EST | By: Fred TopelThis season, Community cast John Goodman in the role of the principal of the air conditioning repair school that competes with Greendale. Goodman just took a role in the Denzel Washington film Flight in which he has grown a pony tail and goatee. He goes back to work on Community next week. “I’m screwed there,” Goodman said. “I’ve gotta work there next week and I told them as soon as I get the Flight job what was going to happen with the beard, so I don’t know what they’re going to do. I don’t know how we’re going to deal with it. I’m worried sick about it but I can’t [change it.]” If any show can come up with a clever way to deal with a character’s drastic real world changes. Maybe they’ll be meta about it. “Yeah, you’re right. Maybe they’ll just use a computer generated pad on there.” Goodman is promoting his latest film, The Artist, a silent film comedy that’s played the Cannes, Toronto and AFI film festivals. “You’re not going into it with the thought that you’re doing a silent movie,” he said. “You’re just doing a film [and] there’s no mics.”As for Community, Goodman doesn’t know what’s in store for his next appearance. “I wish I knew. I don’t even know when I’m working next week. I only work a day a month and now it’s been six weeks since I’ve worked so I don’t know what’s going on. They call me when they need me and they’re going to get a little surprise with the hair and the beard this time. I don’t know. Since I work one day, I get to jam about six pages of dialogue into one day. It’s rough.” Community airs Thursday nights at 8 on NBC. The Artist opens November 25.

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