It's a new 'Dawn' for 'Cabin In The Woods' as Sony and MGM continue to make their deal
MGM's financial woes are the stuff of legend at this point.
As long as I've lived in Los Angeles… just over twenty years at this point… MGM has been "in trouble." There have been several major shifts in ownership, and who owns what, and the MGM library has been broken up and resold many times over. As a result, this latest round of MGM difficulty has been a fair amount of white noise for me, more of the same, with the notable exception of the fates of "Bond 23" and "The Hobbit."
Those were the biggest stories tied up in this larger story, and as Greg Ellwood wrote last night, it looks like "Bond 23" has become terribly important to Sony. And why not? They had a major part in both "Casino Royale" and "Quantum Of Solace," and they've gotten used to that James Bond money. They've also been part of laying some narrative groundwork that I hope pays off finally in this next film, and with Sony already in the Daniel Craig business in a big way with Fincher's "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo," it makes sense that they want to keep track of him and be part of scheduling his time over the next few years.
But now that the big questions are out of the way, there are a few other important issues on the table, and it looks like Sony may be riding to the rescue of some smaller films that need the help. In particular, "Red Dawn" and "Cabin In The Woods," which have been missing in action for a while now, and which are both movies that deserve their day in court.
With "Red Dawn," they've got a great cast full of breakout stars who have actually become more valuable during the time the film's been on the shelf. After all, now you've got Thor starring in your film, and Josh Hutcherson and Adrianne Palicki and Isabel Lucas and Jeffrey Dean Morgan have all got fans, and taken as a group, that's a cast that makes me at least interested in seeing what they've done to the John Milius original.
With "Cabin In The Woods," you've got a promising and uber-high-concept script that tweaks the iconography of teen horror movies in a way that I can promise we've never seen before onscreen, and you've got Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard involved. You've also got cast members like Jesse Williams and Amy Acker and Jodelle Ferland and… oh, look at that, it's Thor again. Throw in Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford to mix it up and keep it from just being another teen parade, and it sounds like a film we should have seen back in October of 2009, when it was first set for release.
The good news is that these films are going to find a home. The question mark is just what that means. Will Sony invest in giving them a full theatrical release? Will they shuffle them over to Screen Gems? Will they get perfunctory releases before they are sent to DVD and Blu-ray?
That's what we don't know yet. But at least we're finally hearing some rumblings of release for these films and for whatever else is still lingering on the MGM shelf at this point. Here's hoping the films and the filmmakers are given a fair shot, and that we get a chance to decide for ourselves as viewers whether these movies deserved their time in limbo, or whether they are gems, finally rescued from an unjust imprisonment.
We'll have more as the details of the releases come into focus.
1941 | Animation | GSummary: Humorist Robert Benchley attempts to find Walt Disney to ask him to adapt a short story about a gentle dragon who would rather recite poetry than be ferocious. Along the way, he is given a tour of Walt Disney Studios, and learns about the animation process.Director: Hamilton Luske
Cast: Robert Benchley, Frances Gifford, Buddy Pepper, Nana Bryant
1990 | Adventure | GSummary: A lawless poacher wants to capture a majestic and rare golden eagle, so he kidnaps the boy who knows where to find the bird. Not to worry -- the Rescue Aid Society's top agents, heroic mice Miss Bianca and Bernard, fly to Australia to save the day. Accompanying the fearless duo are bumbling albat...Director: Hendel Butoy, Mike Gabriel
Cast: Bob Newhart, Eva Gabor, John Candy, Tristan Rogers
1994 | Drama | PGSummary: 10-year-old Fiona is sent to live with her grandparents in a small fishing village in Donegal, Ireland. She soon learns the local legend that an ancestor of hers married a Selkie - a seal who can turn into a human. Years earlier, her baby brother was washed out to sea and never seen again, so whe...Director: John Sayles
Cast: Jeni Courtney, Eileen Colgan, Mick Lally, John Lynch
2007 | Drama | TV-14Summary: One of the best shows ever to air on television explores the origins of modern advertising, sexual relationships and social structures, with star-making turns from Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, and Christina Hendricks.Director: Matthew Weiner (creator)
Cast: Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser, January Jones, Christina Hendricks, John Slattery
1941 | Family | GSummary: The giant-eared baby elephant Dumbo finds his confidence thanks in part to his friendship with Timothy the Mouse in this Disney animated classic.Director: Samuel Armstrong
Cast: Sterling Holloway, Edward Brophy, James Baskett
1972 | Drama | PGSummary: Two men, working as professional boxers, come to blows when their careers each begin to take opposite momentum.Director: John Huston
Cast: Stacy Keach, Jeff Bridges, Susan Tyrrell, Candy Clark
1997 | Drama | RSummary: Matt Damon got his break as an MIT janitor who hides his mathematical brilliance, but is eventually guided by a therapist played beautifully by Robin Williams. Damon and Ben Affleck, who also appears, won an Oscar for their original screenplay.Director: Gus Van Sant
Cast: Matt Damon, Minnie Driver, Robin Williams, Ben Affleck
2010 | Drama | PG-13Summary: The first film from Selma director Ava DuVernay chronicles a day in the life of a woman whose world is shattered by grief, and sees her trying to find new balance.Director: Ava DuVernay
Cast: Salli Richardson-Whitfield, Tracie Thoms, Omari Hardwick
1937 | Drama | GSummary: Heidi is orphaned and her selfish maternal Aunt Dete takes her to the mountains to live with her grumpy old paternal grandfather, Adolph Kramer. Heidi brings her grandfather back into mountain society...through her angelic ways and sheer love. When Aunt Dete steals Heidi away to be the companion ...Director: Allan Dwan
Cast: Shirley Temple, Jean Hersholt, Arthur Treacher, Helen Westley
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