Early Tuesday morning, the Toronto International Film Festival will announce its initial wave of films for the 2014 edition of the festival. As usual, there will be a slew of films that have played at either Cannes or Sundance, a number of star-filled projects looking for distribution, some broader studio films that may or may not be awards season fodder and then, of course, the potential Oscar players.
Yes, it's a cliche to remark that the movie business isn't easy. If it were Hollywood would be celebrating multiple blockbusters grossing over $300 million this summer and, if you haven't been paying attention, they clearly are not. What works as a pitch, a screenplay or a development package doesn't always work on screen.
"Sex Tape" is one of those movies that looks great on paper. Cameron Diaz, an actress who has skillfully honed her comedic talents over the years, and Jason Segel, a funny actor and talented screenwriter, team up in a romantic comedy/farce about a couple who lose a sex tape they made for personal use and have to get it back before it embarrasses them publicly. Both actors are teaming up with director Jake Kasdan who they collaborated with on the hit summer comedy "Bad Teacher." If the script is funny this should be a slam dunk right? Wrong.
Think you're all that Telluride? Feeling confident in your slate Venice? Fighting for your premiere life Toronto? Well, the New York Film Festival has no plans of sitting on the sidelines in the battle for major premieres this fall movie season. On Wednesday, the Film Society of Lincoln Center revealed that David Fincher's "Gone Girl" will open the festival on Sept. 26. Friday evening it was revealed that another highly anticipated film, Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice," will be the event's centerpiece gala.
Can you believe we're less about two months away from Fall movie season? By mid-September studios and indies start to slowly roll out their more prestige releases some of which may or may not be awards season fodder. One film arriving in September that might not be on your radar yet is Peter Chelsom's "Hector and the Search for Happiness."
If you follow any prominent journalist, critic or entertainment reporter on Twitter or Facebook, you may have noticed the past few weeks have been spent dreading Comic-Con. There are some prominent exceptions, but for the most part the San Diego pop culture extravaganza is one of the toughest and most stressful events to cover on the entertainment calendar. As members of the media, we often becomes so fixated on the negatives we forget how often Comic-Con brings joy to the movie or TV fan inside all of us. And frankly, it's our job to convey that excitement to all of our readers who can't make it down to Hall H or Ballroom 23.
Viola Davis may have a potential hit series on her hands with Shonda Rhimes' "How to Get Away with Murder," but don't worry movie fans, she isn't giving up her day job. The two-time Oscar nominee has a number of big screen roles on the way including a reunion with Tate Taylor, the director of "The Help" in "Get On Up," which hits theaters next month.
Comic-Con has become a strange bird to Hollywood studios. Bringing talent and previewing footage can give tremendous hype and word of mouth to eventual blockbusters ("Django Unchained," "Gravity," "Iron Man") or it can end up providing false hope for genre films hope will be smash hits ("Cowboys and Aliens," "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World"). That means it can be an expensive endeavor if things don't go well and, moreover, you might not realize that until six months later on your opening weekend.
It's rare that a sequel is better than the original film, but "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" joins "22 Jump Street" in pulling that feat off this summer.
A two-hour panel scheduled for "The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies?" That's a big hint that a lot of surprises could be in store for movie fans on yet another packed Comic-Con Saturday. The organizers released the schedule for July 26 and have slotted over eight-straight hours of movie panels in Hall H. And in what is becoming a tradition, Marvel Studios will be the last to show their wares.