Check out the First Footage From Blade Runner 2049!

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by: Jay Carlson – Editor-in-chief

Thirty years after the events of the first film, a new blade runner, LAPD Officer K (Ryan Gosling), unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what’s left of society into chaos. K’s discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former LAPD blade runner who has been missing for 30 years.

 

When news broke that after many years of conversation Blade Runner 2049 was officially a go I was against it. Blade Runner ranks among my favorite films of all time. Part of what makes that film so special for me was the ambiguity of its ending. My kneejerk reaction was to shut down the prospect of a sequel, because it would undo everything I love about the original film. Harrison Ford was going to be back so it would have to demystify everything I loved about the world of Blade Runner. Blade Runner 2049 would have to definitively tell you if Deckard was a replicant, right?

What if it didn’t?

I started thinking about how you bring Harrison Ford back to futuristic Los Angeles without messing up what made Ridley Scott’s film a flawed masterpiece. Then it occurred to me. The best way to approach Harrison Ford’s character in Blade Runner 2049 is to make him a replicant.

“But Jay, I thought you just said you liked the ambiguity of the original film.”

I did. But follow along…

The best way to handle the character of Rick Deckard in Blade Runner is to leave that character in the first film. His story ends when those elevator doors shut. What happened after that? Who knows? Was he a replicant? Maybe. Maybe not. It’s whatever you want it to be.

The character Harrison Ford plays in BR 2049 should be a replicant. It preserves the character established in the first film. If you thought he was a replicant and Gaff knew his dreams, he can be a replicant. If you believe he was a human who ran off with an android that he fell in love with, he did. Our Harrison Ford in BR 2049 can be a whole different character. He can be a replicant based on the human Blade Runner we met in the original film. Or maybe he’s another replicant in a long line of Deckard replicants. Pretty cool, right? The important part is this film doesn’t need to answer the questions that the first film asked viewers to answer for themselves.

Deckard the replicant could also open up a very cool plot for BR 2049. Imagine a world where Harrison Ford is the “skin job” on the run, with Ryan Gosling tasked to retire him? That idea makes me positively giddy. Maybe Deckard 2.0 is a replicant who has a human’s lifespan. This is the future, after all.

After coming to the realization that Blade Runner 2 doesn’t  have to ruin what I loved about Blade Runner I am REALLY excited to see what story Villeneuve plans to tell in BR 2049.

Granted this trailer doesn’t tell us much, but I fear they may have gone a little two dimensional with the approach, especially based off of the synopsis released above. It frankly sounds like the plot of The Force Awakens with mixed with the plot to Total Recall (another film based on a Philip K. Dick story). I have ridiculous expectations for this film, my love of Blade Runner rivals my love of Star Wars. I’m really hoping Villeneuve is able to make something really special that stands up proudly next to Ridley Scott’s original film. He’s been knocking everything out of the park for the past few years. If anyone can make worthy sequel it’s him. (If you haven’t already seen it, get out there and see Arrival)

Blade Runner 2049 is set to open 10.6.17

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Blade Runner 2 Coming in 2018

Harrison Ford Blade Runner

by: S. Scott Stanikmas – Senior Staff Writer

Fans were divided when they heard a sequel to Ridley Scott’s futuristic noir classic Blade Runner was in the works. But whether you love the idea or loathe its existence, one thing is now certain – we know when we’ll be seeing it hit theaters.

Warner Bros dropped a press release today that set an official release date. We can expect to see the next installment on January 12, 2018.

Typically the opening months of the New Year are dumping grounds for films that studios have no faith in. But maybe WB are doing a bit of strategic planning. Instead of putting it up against a slew of other summer blockbusters and tent pole films, the studio feels like it can have an uncontested hit early in the year.

Coming from Prisoners and Sicario director Denis Villeneuve and screenwriters Hampton Fancher (the original film) and Michael Green (Green Lantern), the only thing we know about the plot is that it will be set several decades after the first movie (which itself took place in 2019).

Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford have been confirmed to star, but Gosling’s role has yet to be defined.

Whoever (or whatever) the character may be, I know that droves of fans will turn out to either sing the praises of the sequel or bury it six feet under.

The official press release came out as follows:

Alcon Entertainment’s sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 masterpiece BLADE RUNNER, to star Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford (reprising his role as Rick Deckard), and to be directed by Denis Villeneuve (Sciario, Prisoners), will be released by Warner Bros. in North America on January 12, 2018, it was announced by Alcon co-founders and co-CEO’s Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson.

Sony Pictures Releasing International will distribute in all overseas territories in all media.

The story, written by Hampton Fancher (co-writer of the original) and Michael Green and based on a story by Fancher and Ridley Scott, takes up several decades after the conclusion of the 1982 original.

Principal photography is scheduled to begin in July, 2016. Multi-Oscar nominated cinematographer Roger Deakins (Sicario, Prisoners) will reunite with Villeneuve on the project.

Alcon Entertainment acquired the film, television and ancillary franchise rights to BLADE RUNNER in 2011 from the late producer Bud Yorkin and Cynthia Sikes Yorkin to produce prequels and sequels to the iconic science-fiction thriller. Cynthia Sikes Yorkin will produce along with Johnson and Kosove. Bud Yorkin will receive producer credit.

Ridley Scott will serve as Executive Producer. Frank Giustra and Tim Gamble, CEO’s of Thunderbird Films, will also serve as executive producers along with Bill Carraro (“Terminator Genisys,”The Golden Compass”).

A New Red Band Trailer for Shane Black’s ‘The Nice Guys’ Starring Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling

 

“The Nice Guys” takes place in 1970s Los Angeles, when down-on-his-luck private eye Holland March (Gosling) and hired enforcer Jackson Healy (Crowe) must work together to solve the case of a missing girl and the seemingly unrelated death of a porn star. During their investigation, they uncover a shocking conspiracy that reaches up to the highest circles of power.

“The Nice Guys” is scheduled for release in theaters on May 20, 2016, and will be distributed in North America by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Trailer: Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell in Adam McKay’s ‘The Big Short’

The Big Short

 

When four outsiders saw what the big banks, media and government refused to, the global collapse of the economy, they had an idea: The Big Short. Their bold investment leads them into the dark underbelly of modern banking where they must question everyone and everything. Based on the true story and best-selling book by Michael Lewis (The Blind Side, Moneyball), and directed by Adam Mckay (Anchorman, Step Brothers) The Big Short stars Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt.

Director: Adam McKay

Starring: Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, Melissa Leo, Hamish Linklater, John Magaro, Rafe Spall, Jeremy Strong, Marisa Tomei and Finn Wittrock

Ryan Gosling Cast in ‘Blade Runner’ Sequel

by: S. Scott Stanikmas

The sequel to Blade Runner is gaining some major steam as it moves closer to its summer 2016 principal photography start. You may have missed it, what with the new Star Wars trailer debuting today, but Harrison Ford will have a new co-star when he returns as Rick Deckard. The Blade Runner 2 producers announced that Ryan Gosling is joining the project.

The original film, directed by Ridley Scott, centered on a dystopian future set in 2019 Los Angeles. The sequel will take place several decades after the events of the 1982 classic.

Original director Ridley Scott will handle the executive producing duties this time around, handing the reins over to Prisoners director Denis Villeneuve. The script will come from original Blade Runner writer Hampton Fancher and Michael Green.

Right now almost everything else is being kept under wraps. That includes plot details and who exactly Gosling will be playing playing.

I’m not too sure how to judge this. Many fans are already crying foul play, saying a sequel is sacrilege. Gosling has his pick of whatever project he wants though, so he must see something of note in this movie. It’s tough to say at this point in time, especially not knowing any real details. For now, I’m intrigued.

Guillermo del Toro and Ryan Gosling Team-up for ‘Haunted Mansion’

by: S. Scott Stanikmas

It looks like the idea of Guillermo del Toro directing the supernatural DC movie is going to remain just that – an idea. The director already has a full plate with Pacific Rim sequels, work on FX’s The Strain, and a bunch of other side projects. And it looks like one of the director’s long-gestating projects has been added to his upcoming slate.

GdT is teaming up with Ryan Gosling to bring a new version of Disney’s The Haunted Mansion to theaters. The Wrap is reporting that the two have pretty much got this deal in the bag at this point.

Guillermo del Toro first brought this idea up at San Diego Comic-Con 2010, stating that he wanted to make a scary movie about the most haunted place on Earth and stay true to the ideas of the original Imagineers. Which means no slapstick comedy like the original Eddie Murphy version.

Apparently the director re-teamed with writer Matthew Robbins (the two most recently worked on the remake of Don’t Be Afraid Of the Dark) and came up with a screenplay, but ultimately wanted to find a screenwriter that would give the script a little extra something.

Last year on Reddit, del Toro once again talked about his ideas for the project:

Well, I spent 2 weeks ago, I went back to Disneyland with the executives with whom I am developing the screenplay. It’s a hard screenplay to crack. We’ve done it a few times. We are on our third or fourth draft, with 2 different writing teams, and I think the main thing is to try to combine everything that is great about the ride into the movie, and to make it a really intense but with a sense of fun just like the ride. It’s a tough balance, and I would be happy to report if we had the screenplay. We always feel like we are very close, but not yet. We have developed 50-60 pieces of art, We’ve developed maquettes of the Hat Box Ghost, over the body and face of Doug Jones, but we have not succeeded yet in cracking the screenplay. I have to believe that Disney will make this movie as soon as we crack the screenplay, but until then we cannot tackle it.

del Toro seems to have a fascination with the Hat Box Ghost. The Hat Box Ghost was a creation for the original run of the ride, but was pulled shortly after its debut. GdT feels that the Ghost is one of the scariest creations from Disney. “There’s a legend that it was discarded on the first day of the ride’s operation because it was too scary,” said del Toro. “I like that legend, but the reality is that the imagineers could not make the illusion work, so they took it out.”

No word yet on exactly what Gosling’s role will be, but with everything else del Toro has in front of him at the moment and the fact that he’s been working on it for almost six years, I wouldn’t be shocked if this one is a bit of a slow mover in the production department.

Pitt, Bale and Gosling in for Adam McKay’s Financial Drama ‘The Big Short’

by: S. Scott Stanikmas

After finding success adapting Michael Lewis’ Moneyball Brad Pitt is looking to bring another of the author’s books to the big screen. And he’s bringing some big names along with him.

Variety reports that “The Big Short: Inside The Doomsday Machine” is the next book to be adapted for Pitt’s Plan B production house. Adam McKay will be writing the script and directing.

The Big Short tells the story of the of the build-up of the housing and credit bubble in the early 2000s that eventually led to the financial crisis that gripped the United States from 2007 until 2010, with ripples still felt through to today.

Pitt is said to be very passionate about getting this adaptation on the big screen, much like he was with the film adaptation of “Moneyball: The Art Of Winning An Unfair Game.”

Already signed to star are Brad Pitt (naturally), Christian Bale (fresh from rumors that he was going to play Steve Jobs in the upcoming biopic) and Ryan Gosling.

The book follows many different people who had a hand in creating the credit bubble that eventually burst so its expected that the film may cast a slew of A-list actors who all have similar sized roles, much like past films like Traffic and Crash.

No production start date has been confirmed as of this writing.

I liked Moneyball a lot. Pitt seems to have a knack for picking great projects lately, whether its for him to star in (World War Z) or just simply produce (the recently released and critically acclaimed Selma). It will be interesting to see who else joins the cast later on. I’m definitely going to be keeping my eye on this one.

Shane Black’s ‘ The Nice Guys’ Will Reunite ‘L.A. Confidential’ Co-Stars Russell Crowe and Kim Basinger

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by: Jay Carlson

Kim Basinger has joined the cast of Shane Black’s Nice Guys, starring Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling.

Black’s film centers on a private detective, played by Gosling, and a jaded racketeer, played by Russell Crowe, who must team up to find a missing actress in the scuzzy, seedy and smoggy side of 1970s Los Angeles.

According to The Hollywood Reporter “Basinger will play the chief justice with dubious interests.”

Basinger joins Matthew Bomer, Beau Knapp and Keith David who were also recently cast. The last time she shared the screen with Russell Crowe she took home an Academy Award for L.A. Confidential. 

Shane Black has become a highly sought after director after the success of Iron Man 3. Besides The Nice Guys he’s attached to a new Remo Williams film, as well as an adaptation of Doc Savage and a new Predator film.

I love Shane Black’s films. From his scripts for Monster Squad (directed by his college buddy, Fred Dekker) and Lethal Weapon to his direction on Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.

I can’t wait to see what Black is able to throw together for The Nice Guys. He’s rounding up a pretty great cast.

Thoughts?

Apparently Everyone Wants to be ‘Strange’!

by: S. Scott Stanikmas

Marvel wants us to pay close attention to what they are trying to say: Dr. Strange is and A-list property and they intend to treat him as such. And nothing says this more than the list of actors being courted to play Stephen Strange.

In a search that has become even more exhausting than the one for the director of Ant-Man earlier this year, some new names are being tossed into the ring to play Doctor Strange.

Earlier in the week reports surfaced about Ewan McGregor being a front runner for the role. Now a few more names are now being bandied about.

According to The Wrap, Colin Farrell and Keanu Reeves are being considered for offers to play Marvel’s Master of the Mystic Arts. And apparently Benedict Cumberbatch remains high in the studio’s wish list as well and they were surprised when he was left out of the latest batch of media reporting.

Farrell and Reeves are both hot commodities at the moment. Reeves has a high profile movie in John Wick that looks amazing and is getting rave reviews. And Farrell is currently set to star in the second season of HBO’s top rated drama True Detective. Both of their schedules currently seem open for the time frame needed to film this latest Marvel cinematic offering.

Cumberbatch, while thoroughly enticing, would be a little harder to pin down. He has his current season of the BBC show Sherlock to finish up and it’s being rumored that he is looking to follow that up with some stage work.

And let’s not forget that it was rumored earlier in the week that Ryan Gosling is looking for a franchise to hang his hat on and call his own.

For a character who was at one time a C-list fringe favorite, it’s pretty amazing to see Marvel want all these A-list stars to play him. It looks like the comic company is finally seeing what all of Dr. Strange’s fans have seen all along.

Warner Bros Puts Possible Cast of ‘Suicide Squad’ in its Sights

by: S. Scott Stanikmas

After the lackluster announcement of its slated comic book movies, Warner Bros. has taken strides to make up for it. Shooting for an all-star cast, the production company wants us to sit up and take notice of the Suicide Squad movie. The Suicide Squad is a team of super-villains who do the crazy black-ops missions no one else will, a premise tailor made for a big budget, balls to the wall action movie.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, leading men Ryan Gosling, Will Smith and Tom Hardy are all up for roles in the scheduled villain team-up. Not content to let the boys have all the headlines, Australian actress Margot Robbie has also been offered a role.

No official characters have been set and fans of the comic can tell you the roster can be quite the revolving door, so whoever gets cast could be playing anyone from Task Force X’s illustrious past. But some names that have been bandied about are Squad stalwarts like Amanda Waller, Deadshot, and “Captain Boomerang” Digger Harkness along with former member and former Justice Leaguer Vixen. I could totally see Tom Hardy as Deadshot or Ryan Gosling as Harkness.

Even though Hardy, Robbie, and Smith all have current projects in at Warner Bros., that in no way, shape or form automatically ties them down to this project. Still, Warner wants you to know that they have faith in this movie being a big money maker with big names attached.

But If Warner Bros. wants Gosling they may want to tie him down quick. After stories surfaced of Marvel looking at Ewan McGregor for their Dr. Strange movie, Gosling was rumored to have taken an interest in that exact role. And not just that, Gosling has also shown interest in a Houdini franchise that’s been floating around for Summit. For a man who likes to be able to move around and pick projects that appeal to his artistic nature, to be tied down to a franchise at any of these studios would be a huge coup.

Even though many are saying this will just be a poor man’s terrestrial Guardians of the Galaxy at best, you have to give Warner Bros. credit for one thing – with Suicide Squad, they’re shooting for the stars.

Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe’s ‘The Nice Guys’ Adds Some Nice Girls to it’s Cast

 

 

Margaret Qualley

Shane Black’s The Nice Guys, starring Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe, has added Angourie Rice and Margaret Qualley to its cast.

The film centers on  a private detective (Gosling) and a jaded racketeer (Crowe) who must team up to find a missing actress in the scuzzy, seedy and smoggy side of 1970s Los Angeles. Rice will play Gosling’s daughter who tags along with him on cases from time to time. Qualley, who was featured in HBO’s The Leftovers will be making her feature film debut as a social activist who resembles a porn star.

The film, co-written by Black and Anthony Bagarozzi is set to begin shooting in November.

What do you think? I loved Black’s Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Do you think The Nice Guy could recapture a little of that magic? Neither of them is Robert Downey Jr.

 

Shane Black Locks Down His Leads For His Next Film!

Looks like Shane Black has scored Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling for ‘The Nice Guys’, his follow-up to Iron Man 3.

‘The script, co-written by Black with Anthony Bagarozzi, is set in Los Angeles during the 1970s and centered on a pair of detectives investigating the seeming suicide of a female porn star whose career was on the decline — leading to the uncovering of a criminal conspiracy.”

Black staged a live read of the script written by him and Anthony Bagarozzi back at the Austin Film Festival back in 2011. Their description of the script:

In smoggy 1970s Los Angeles, Jackson Healy (muscle-for-hire, recovering alcoholic) and Holland March (private eye, practicing alcoholic) are brought together by the suicide of a fading porn star. Problem is, the dead girl’s aunt is convinced she saw her niece alive and well, AFTER the highly publicized incident. March needs money, takes the case-and within days, it’s blossomed into a far-reaching murder conspiracy, bizarrely rooted in smog and the U.S. auto industry.

It certainly sounds like a Shane Black film, which is a good thing. He’s got a style and authenticity that will be able to create a rich fully realized world for these characters.

 

 

Dunst, Mortensen, and Isaac’s ‘Two Faces of January’ has a Poster

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Thompson on Hollywood premiered a new poster for ‘The Two Faces of January’, the first feature directed by Hossein Amini, the writer of ‘Drive’.

The film is based on Patricia Highsmith’s 1962 novel. The plot center’s  on an “American couple (Mortensen and Dunst) who, while vacationing in sunny Athens, tangle with a suspiciously charismatic Greek-speaking American (Isaac). But their menage-a-trois takes murderous, jealous and paranoid turns when he becomes accomplice to the affluent couple’s bad behavior.”

Sounds like an intriguing film. I certainly enjoy each of the main cast members. I’d like to see Dunst bounce back into the spotlight after some solid turns in ‘Melancholia’, ‘All Good Things’ and ‘Bachelorette’. Isaac was lights-out in ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’. And I would watch Mortensen in just about anything.

Look for this one on VOD on August 28, and in theaters on September 26.

Does Shane Black Think Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe are The Nice Guys?

Looks like Shane Black is trying to pull Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling for his follow-up to Iron Man 3.

Black staged a live read of the script written by him and Anthony Bagarozzi back at the Austin Film Festival back in 2011. Their description of the script:

In smoggy 1970s Los Angeles, Jackson Healy (muscle-for-hire, recovering alcoholic) and Holland March (private eye, practicing alcoholic) are brought together by the suicide of a fading porn star. Problem is, the dead girl’s aunt is convinced she saw her niece alive and well, AFTER the highly publicized incident. March needs money, takes the case-and within days, it’s blossomed into a far-reaching murder conspiracy, bizarrely rooted in smog and the U.S. auto industry.

It certainly sounds like a Shane Black film, which is a good thing. He’s got a style and authenticity and is able to create a rich fully realized world for his characters.

I hope he gets the cast he wants and gets this one in front of a camera ASAP.