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Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler on Their ‘The House’ Characters: ‘I Light a Guy on Fire’

31 minutes ago

Five days into the summer, Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler welcomed the season unpretentiously at New Line’s world premiere Monday of R-rated comedy “The House” at the Tcl Chinese Theatre.

“For something you’d want to see on a summer weekend, I think it hits the mark,” Ferrell mused. “Amy and I play very ordinary people who will do anything for their kid [and] get sucked into making this decision to open a casino in a basement. There’s this allure to Vegas  — that it’s one special hand to change your life even though most of the time, it doesn’t. I think we did a good job of moving that to a suburban setting.”

Related

The House’ Trailer: Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler Run an Underground Casino (Watch)

Indeed, “The House” tells the story of parents (Ferrell and Poehler) who are talked into launching the casino to pay for their daughter’s college costs. Poehler »


- Dave McNary

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David Lynch, Ian McKellen, Xavier Dolan, Vanessa Redgrave set for Rome Film Festival Events

1 hour ago

Rome — David Lynch will be feted with a lifetime achievement award by the Rome Film Festival where the U.S. director of “Blue Velvet” and “Twin Peaks” will also hold an onstage conversation with artistic director Antonio Monda.

Monda at a Rome press luncheon on Tuesday, called Lynch “simply the coolest director alive.” He also announced that British actor Ian McKellen; French Canadian wunderkind director/actor Xavier Dolan; Oscar-winning British actress Vanessa Redgrave and U.S. author Chuck Palahniuk (“Fight Club”) will be participating in other public conversations within the fest’s dedicated Close Encounters section.

As for movies, Steven Soderbergh’s upcoming “Logan Lucky” will have its European preem in Rome. The heist comedy with an all star cast that includes Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Hilary Swank,  Katie Holmes and a platinum-coiffed Daniel Craig, hits U.S. theatres on August 18.

The twelfth edition of the Rome fest will run October 26-November 5, separately from Rome’s Mia »


- Nick Vivarelli

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Franchise Report Card: From Marvel to DC to the Dark Universe, Grading Hollywood’s Big Series

1 hour ago

In Hollywood, a studio is only as strong as its franchises. That’s bad news for a number of players. Recent months have not been kind to a number of major film series, as sequels to “Transformers,” “Pirates of the Caribbean,” and “Alien” have sputtered to the box office, and attempts to spawn new franchises, such as the Dark Universe, have collapsed. Some properties, particularly those in the DC Comics and Marvel realms, have emerged from the box office blood sports unscathed, but they remain exceptions to the rules.

Through the first half of 2017, here’s a look at which major series are still going strong and which franchises have spawned their last sequel.

Alien

State of the Franchise: After four decades and seven films, this extraterrestrial chiller may have offered up its last chestburster with “Alien: Convenant.” So far the film has earned a little more than half of what its predecessor, 2012’s “Prometheus, »


- Brent Lang and Seth Kelley

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Outsider Pictures Handling Sales on Small is Biutiful Title ‘1,200 Souls’ (Exclusive)

3 hours ago

Paris — Paul Hudson’s L.A. based Outsider Pictures has boarded “1,200 Souls,” a fantasy thriller set in the high Pyrenees, and one of the highlights at the 10th Spain-Ile de France Small is Biutiful in Paris, a prestigious boutique Spain-France co-production forum which unspooled June 23.

Outsider Pictures is handling international sales rights on “1,200 Souls,” the latest movie from the Zaragoza-based producer-director tandem of Marta Cabrera and Pablo Aragues whose “Novatos,” also repped by Hudson, was a Netflix worldwide distribution pick-up.

In his first two features, Aragues tackled sects (“Vigilo el camino”) and hazing (“Novatos”). Backed by the Aragon Film Commission, “1,200 Souls” is set in a small town in the lap of the Pyrenees, to which a young woman, Carla, returns to scatter her mother’s ashes, only to be confronted by violence, deaths and the seemingly supernatural, such as spontaneous combustion.

A film about “a girl looking for her origins,” Cabrera told Variety, »


- John Hopewell and Elsa Keslassy

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James Corden’s Production Company Preps ‘Bros’ Feature Documentary

3 hours ago

Fulwell 73, the U.K. producer that makes the “Late Late Show” and now counts James Corden as one of its partners, is making “Bros,” a feature doc about the British  boyband, which shot to fame in the 1980s and is reforming this year.

The documentary film will be financed by Lorton Entertainment and directed by by Fulwell 73’s David Soutar (“Harry Styles Behind The Music”). It will track the highs and lows of the band, from their breakout success, to family tragedy, and internal bust-ups.

Bros were hugely popular in the in the 1980s and the band became the youngest to have its own Wembley show. A reunion concert will take place at the London O2 later this year, the first gig since 1989, and which sold out in seven seconds when tickets went on sale late last year.

Band members Matt and Luke Goss will appear in the film, alongside »


- Stewart Clarke

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Fox’s $14.9 billion Sky Deal Cleared in Ireland, U.K. Announcement Imminent

3 hours ago

With a decision from U.K. authorities on 21st Century Fox’s proposed £11.7 billion ($14.9 billion) takeover of Sky imminent, Ireland has given the deal a green light.

Fox wants to fully acquire Sky, buying the shares in the European pay TV operator that it does not already own. It needed approval for the deal in all of the territories in which it operates, and has now had that in Austria, Germany, Italy, and the Republic of Ireland. Only the U.K., Sky’s largest market, is still to make a decision. The European Union has also given the deal its blessing.

The U.K. government received a report from media regulator Ofcom last week and a full decision is expected this week. Culture Minister Karen Bradley can either say she is minded to approve the deal in its current form, attach conditions, or refer it to U.K. competition authorities. The U. »


- Stewart Clarke

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Indian Censor Decisions Shift From Erratic to Surreal and Political

4 hours ago

The ongoing saga of India’s Central Board of Film Certification (Cbfc) making bizarre censorship decisions continued this week with rulings on the films “An Insignificant Man” and “Jab Harry Met Sejal.”

Directed by popular Bollywood filmmaker Imtiaz Ali, romantic drama “Jab Harry Met Sejal” stars Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma and is due an August 4 release. Cbfc chief Pahlaj Nihalani objected to the word “intercourse” used in one of the film’s promos and wanted it removed on the grounds that it was unsuitable for 12-year-olds.

Nihalani initially said that the word could stay if 100,000 people voted to keep it in. Now, he has added a few provisos. The votes have to be from married people aged 36 and above, as they are likely to have 12-year-old children.

Khan has told the Indian media that if the Cbfc see the word in the context of the whole film they would understand that the usage is appropriate »


- Naman Ramachandran

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Japan Box Office: ‘Confession of Murder’ Strikes Again in Third Weekend

11 hours ago

Confession of Murder,” Yu Irie’s hit take on Jung Byung-Gil’s 2012 Korean thriller, took top spot at the Japanese box office for the third consecutive weekend. For the June 24-25 frame, the film earned $2.1 million on 165,000 admissions, while running its cumulative total to $12.8 million. Distributed by Warner Japan, the film looks likely to end its run near the $20 million mark.

Holding onto second place was Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast.” Now in its tenth week on release, the film extended its cumulative total to $106 million. This puts it at number 19 on the all-time Japanese box office chart, for both foreign and domestic films.

Highest ranking among the new releases, at number four, was Mel Gibson’s “Hacksaw Ridge.” In its opening weekend, the film made $950,000, with Kino Films distributing. With an audience of mainly males aged forty and over, the film is forecast to finish near the $5 million milestone.

Related »


- Mark Schilling

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Korea Box Office: ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ Debuts on Top

11 hours ago

Paramount’s “Transformers: The Last Knight” topped the Korean box office, albeit with a franchise low score.

Debuting Wednesday with local distribution by Lotte Entertainment, the fifth film in the hugely popular franchise earned $12.9 million from 1.75 million admissions over five days. Dominating 1,727 screens nationwide, “Last Knight” accounted for 64% of the total weekend revenue.

Local thriller, “A Day” remained in second. It earned $1.67 million between Friday and Sunday for a total of $7.07 million after two weekends.

“The Mummy” slipped to third from the previous weeks’ top spot. The Upi release earned $1.2 million between Friday and Sunday for a total of $26.1 million after three weekends on release.

Cannes action drama, “The Villainess” took fourth place, earning $712,000 between Friday and Sunday. The New release has a cumulative $8 million after three weekends.

Emma Watson and Tom Hanks-starring “The Circle” landed in fifth. Opening on Thursday, the sci fi drama earned $370,200 over four days.

Related »


- Sonia Kil

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Colin Trevorrow Responds to Negative ‘Book of Henry’ Reviews: ‘I Do Stand by the Movie’

15 hours ago

Jurassic World” director Colin Trevorrow, whose latest, “The Book of Henry,” hit theaters last weekend, addressed the scathing reviews that the drama has received, calling it “hugely disappointing.”

“It’s a little heartbreaking, without getting too personal,” he told the Empire Podcast. “It came to us as a bit of a shock because we had screened this movie to so many people, and we’d had reactions from so many people that we felt we knew what we had and we knew how it was affecting the audience. And that actually hasn’t changed. It affects audiences in the same way that we thought it would.”

“We did not anticipate that level of vitriolic dislike for the film,” he added. “In the end, do I want to be somebody who pleases both audiences and critics? Absolutely. Is that hugely disappointing? It is.”

Related

Star Wars’: Will Colin Trevorrow Be a Force for Good After ‘The Book of Henry’?

The Book of Henry »


- Dixie Limbachia

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Jared Leto Partners With Omni Magazine for Production Deal (Exclusive)

15 hours ago

Jared Leto is partnering with Omni magazine in a deal to produce original content, Variety has learned exclusively

Jerrick Media and Leto’s Paradox made the announcement Monday. The companies did not disclose any specific projects.

Omni was a science and science fiction magazine published in the Us and the UK between 1978 and 1995. It contained articles on science, parapsychology, and short works of science fiction and fantasy and included authors such as Isaac Asimov, George Rr Martin and William Gibson.

Jerrick Media purchased the rights to Omni in 2012 along with several other brands, and has since reestablished the magazine as an online archive and forum for user-generated fiction.

Rick Schwartz, founder of Jerrick Media, said in a statement, “Omni is one of the crown jewels in the Jerrick portfolio. I can’t think of a better person to partner with in developing its content than Jared, whose career has been defined by fearlessness, otherworldly »


- Dave McNary

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Best ‘Harry Potter’ Book Plotlines and Scenes Left Out of the Movies

17 hours ago

Exactly 20 years ago, J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” hit bookshelves, marking the birth of a massive franchise, both in literature and on the big screen.

The films are lauded by fans by being largely faithful to Rowling’s beloved books, but there are a few key plotpoints that many wish had made it into the movies. In honor of the 20th anniversary milestone, Variety breaks down some of the biggest omissions.

S.P.E.W.

Ask any Hermione Granger fan what the biggest injustice of the “Harry Potter” movies was, and they’ll likely tell you S.P.E.W. Hermione founded S.P.E.W. — Society for the Promotion of Elvish Welfare — after witnessing the gross treatment of house-elves at the 1994 Quidditch World Cup. While the movement was highlighted briefly in the movies, thanks in large part to Dobby, S.P.E.W. saw Hermione as a champion for equal rights »


- Alex Stedman

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Fossil Hunters Drama ‘Remarkable Creatures’ Movie in the Works

17 hours ago

Tracy Chevalier’s historical drama “Remarkable Creatures” is in development as a movie at Resonate Entertainment, a new production company formed by Susan Cartsonis, Suzanne Farwell, and Brent Emery, Variety has learned exclusively.

“Tracy is a brilliant storyteller and tremendous talent,” Cartsonis said. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to bring her into our Resonate family. We created this new company to develop and produce complex and interesting female characters and ‘Remarkable Creatures’ embodies that idea.”

“Remarkable Creatures” is set against the dramatic landscape of the English coastal town of Lyme-Regis and centers on two female 19th century fossil hunters who make significant discoveries that changed the scientific world forever. The story reveals invisible women in science who were influential but marginalized and whose accomplishments were appropriated by men.

“The themes that the book explores of gender, class, female friendship and scientific discovery could not be more timely,” said Farwell. “Female »


- Dave McNary

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Cedric Klapisch’s ‘Back to Burgundy’ Lands at Music Box (Exclusive)

17 hours ago

Music Box Films has bought the U.S. rights to Cedric Klapisch’s comedy-drama “Back to Burgundy” and plans a fall launch in theaters, followed by a home entertainment release.

“Back to Burgundy” stars French actors Pio Marmai, Ana Girardot, and Francois Civil. The story focuses on a man who left his family and his native Burgundy 10 years ago to tour the world. When learning of his father’s imminent death he returns to his childhood home where he, his sister and brother inherit their family vineyard. As the seasons go by and they work to save the vineyard, they’ll have to learn to trust each other again and reinvent their relationship.

“We are thrilled to bring to the U.S. Cedric Klapisch’s tender and charming tale of the ties that bind a family to each other and to the land they love,” said William Schopf, president of Music Box Films. “The »


- Dave McNary

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‘The Big Sick’ Wins Top Award at 2017 Nantucket Film Festival (Complete List)

18 hours ago

Kumail Nanjiani’s semi-autobiographical romantic comedy “The Big Sick” was the big winner at the 2017 Nantucket Film Festival, which announced its award winners on Monday.

Taylor Sheridan’s “Wind River” was the runner-up.

Best of the Fest awards went to “The Big Sick,” “Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story, Alexandra Dean,” “Monkey Business,” and “Wind River.” »


- Rebecca Rubin

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Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation Sends Restored Classics to Colombia’s IndieBo Film Festival (Exclusive)

19 hours ago

Colombia’s fledgling Bogota indie film festival, IndieBo, has scored a coup with Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation in a pact that will have the festival screening a selection of 10 restored classics from the foundation’s library starting this year.

Among the titles in the selection are Marlon Brando’s 1961 Western “One-Eyed Jacks,” Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s “All About Eve,” Elia Kazan’s “On the Waterfront,” Frank Capra’s “It Happened One Night,” Nicholas Ray’s “Rebel Without a Cause” and Billy Wilder’s “Witness for the Prosecution.”

“This will be an annual event; some of these titles have never screened in Colombia,” said IndieBo artistic director/programmer Juan Carvajal, who cobbled the agreement with the foundation in New York.

He added: “After seeing ‘One Eyed Jacks’ and [Andrei Tarkovsky’s 1979 sci-fi epic] “Stalker” in New York, I felt that Colombia had to live this marvelous and unique experience, too, and that’s what drove me to pursue this agreement.” The »


- Anna Marie de la Fuente

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‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ Continues to Dominate Social Media

19 hours ago

Sony and Marvel’s “Spider-Man: Homecoming” continued to dominate social media buzz with 113,000 new conversations last week, according to media-measurement firm ComScore and its PreAct service.

The activity was spurred by a news conference with the cast in New York on June 25, and announced details for the 2019 sequel. It was the second week in a row that the sixth Spider-Man movie had topped the PreAct chart.

Spider-Man: Homecoming,” starring Tom Holland as a 15-year-old Spider-Man who’s still in high school, has produced a total of 2.31 million new conversations. The tentpole opens on July 7.

Related

Ron Howard on ‘Star Wars’ Han Solo Movie Directing Gig: ‘I’ve Been a Fan Forever’

Disney-Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War” produced 59,000 new conversations last week after the studio released set photos on June 22 and 25. Producer Kevin Feige revealed details for some of the Marvel characters’ fates and that the the movie — which opens May 18, 2018 — would be the final installment.

Disney-Lucasfilm »


- Dave McNary

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‘Conjuring 3’ in the Works With David Leslie Johnson Attached to Write Script

19 hours ago

The “Conjuring” universe continues to expand.

New Line is moving forward on its third iteration of the “Conjuring” franchise with “The Conjuring 3.” David Leslie Johnson is on board to script. James Wan will serve as producer through his Atomic Monster production company with Peter Safran.

The logline for “The Conjuring 3” is under wraps. As with the first two “Conjuring” films, which starred Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga as paranormal researchers Lorraine and Ed Warren, the story will be taken from the Warrens’ case files.

Johnson wrote “The Conjuring 2,” which went on to gross $320 million worldwide. The news comes two weeks after New Line launched development on “The Crooked Man,” based on the malevolent character in “The Conjuring 2” in the the fourth film spinoff from Wan’s 2013 hit “The Conjuring.” The others are “Annabelle,” “Annabelle: Creation” and “The Nun.”

The two “Conjuring” films and 2014’s “Annabelle” have combined to gross $897 million in box office worldwide. “Annabelle: Creation »


- Dave McNary

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‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Set Photos

19 hours ago

Photos from behind-the-scenes of “Avengers: Infinity War.”

Related stories'Spider-Man: Homecoming' Continues to Dominate Social Media'Sherlock' Team Reuniting for New 'Dracula' Series (Exclusive)'Spider-Man: Homecoming': Peter Parker Tries to Grow Up in New Trailer (Watch) »


- Jacob Bryant

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Ben Affleck in Talks for ‘The Accountant’ Sequel at Warner Bros.

21 hours ago

Ben Affleck is in talks with Warner Bros. for a sequel to last year’s action-thriller “The Accountant.”

The studio is also in negotiations to bring back screenwriter Bill Dubuque, director Gavin O’Connor, and producers Lynette Howell Taylor and Mark Williams for the untitled project.

The Accountant” also starred Anna Kendrick, J.K. Simmons, Jon Bernthal, Jeffrey Tambor, John Lithgow, and Cynthia Addai-Robinson. The storyline followed a small-town certified public accountant with high-functioning autism who makes his living uncooking the books of criminal organizations.

Related

Ben Affleck Pays Tribute to ‘Batman’ Predecessor Adam West

His character had received extensive military training as a child, which he uses as an adult to protect himself. Affleck’s character accepts payment in various non-cash forms such as rare comics, gold bricks, and paintings by famous artists. He formed an attachment with Kendrick’s character and rescued her after they were targeted for assassination.

The Accountant »


- Dave McNary

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