<p>The RZA and Eli Roth could barely contain their excitement when discussing 'The Man With The Iron Fists,' the kung-fu epic they collaborated to create.</p>

The RZA and Eli Roth could barely contain their excitement when discussing 'The Man With The Iron Fists,' the kung-fu epic they collaborated to create.

Credit: HitFix

Watch: RZA and Eli Roth get giddy about the hyper-violent 'Man With The Iron Fists'

The creative team behind the martial-arts homage gush about the experience

I sincerely regret not going back to the House Of Blues last week after my interviews with the cast and the crew of "The Man With The Iron Fists" to see the RZA perform.  It was an invite offered to all of the press who worked that day, and it would have been great to see him play some of the tracks from the preposterously fun soundtrack album, but I couldn't make it work.

Even so, I got to sit down with him and with Eli Roth and talk to the two of them about what went into the making of this big, gorgeous, super-sincere tribute to the films that have informed the RZA's aesthetic for as long as he's been a working artist.  They were in a great rowdy mood, the result of finally completing what has been a major part of the RZA's life for several years now and an ambition for years before that.

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<p>You know how you know this is a movie?&nbsp; Because in real life, Dave Bautista would destroy the RZA without breaking a sweat. LOOK&nbsp;AT&nbsp;HIM.</p>

You know how you know this is a movie?  Because in real life, Dave Bautista would destroy the RZA without breaking a sweat. LOOK AT HIM.

Credit: Universal Pictures

Review: 'The Man With The Iron Fists' lands most of its punches with style and gore

HitFix
B
Readers
n/a
Sincerity matters in the RZA's martial-arts epic

I would not say I know the RZA, but I've sure seen a lot of kung-fu movies with him over the years.  He was a regular at the Tarantino festivals in Austin, and perhaps the most insane, over-the-top, how-the-hell-does-this-exist kung-fu film I've ever seen with an audience was one of those screenings where he was right there with the rest of us, freaking out at every single great moment in "A Fistful Of Talons," including what may well be the craziest ending I've ever seen in a film.

That's not an exaggeration, either.  The ending of that movie is one of the few things I've ever seen in a theater that made me leap to my feet, as if I were physically involved in what I was watching.  It is sheer madness, and the audacity and the unashamed uber-violence… that all played into what an amazing shared moment it was.  That seemed to be one of Quentin's goals as a festival programmer, that group experience, and perhaps the highest compliment I can pay to "The Man With The Iron Fists," which is a passion project directed by the RZA and co-written by him with Eli Roth, is that it feels like the sort of film that would play at a Tarantino fest, something he found on a  shelf that no one else had ever seen, and it manages to pull off its ambitious goals without winking at the audience or becoming a mere post-modern exercise.

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<p>Jamie Foxx, seen here at the 'Django&nbsp;Unchained' panel this summer during Comic-Con, is in talks to become Electro in the sequel to 'The Amazing Spider-Man'</p>

Jamie Foxx, seen here at the 'Django Unchained' panel this summer during Comic-Con, is in talks to become Electro in the sequel to 'The Amazing Spider-Man'

Credit: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP Photo

Jamie Foxx in talks to play Electro in 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2'

The actor leaves a tantalizing clue on his Twiter feed

I just published my interview with Sarah Silverman and talked about how strange a fit that seems to be at first, the gleefully filthy stand-up and the biggest family brand in the world, but it really works.  She gives a lovely performance in the film.  And it's a nice reminder that it's not wise to prejudge what someone can or can't do as an actor.

When Jamie Foxx was cast in "Django Unchained," I had a hard time picturing it.  I think he's a very modern presence and some people simply don't strike me as period actors, as people we'd believe in certain other contexts.  The early footage and trailers for "Django Unchained" make me think I was wrong in my knee-jerk reaction, and I am now fervently hoping he pulls it off and does something wonderful.  He's certainly got the right script and the right cast surrounding him.

And while I didn't love "The Amazing Spider-Man," I think the team that's in place could easily improve from the first film to the second one.  Raimi had a learning curve on his "Spider-Man" movies, so Webb could easily do the same thing.  The success of a superhero movie, at least creatively, depends in large part on who they pick as the villain.  And while Jamie Foxx isn't the guy I would think of first as Electro, it sounds like that is the role he's in negotiations to play.

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<p>Sarah Silverman was all smiles when discussing her role in 'Wreck-It Ralph,' the new Disney animated film that arrives this weekend.</p>

Sarah Silverman was all smiles when discussing her role in 'Wreck-It Ralph,' the new Disney animated film that arrives this weekend.

Credit: HitFix

Watch: Sarah Silverman on playing cute in Disney's 'Wreck-It Ralph'

One of the most gleefully dirty comics working today kills it her first time out for Disney

It is still very strange to me that Sarah Silverman is now officially a Disney character.

Sure, she's playing a character named Vanellope von Schweetz, but those pipes could only belong to one person, and it's kind of remarkable that this sort of big pop cartoon would provide the actress with the opportunity to do some of the most nuanced work she's done on film so far.

There's something wonderful about the way kids get to know performers like Silverman or Patton Oswalt or Jack McBrayer or John C. Reilly or Sarah Vowell from these smart, engaging animated stories where they play outrageous characters who are grounded and humanized by that voice work.  Silverman perfectly expresses the bruised heart of the "glitch" who Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly) meets when he sneaks into the game "Sugar Rush."

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<p>Nature is often just plain disturbing.</p>

Nature is often just plain disturbing.

Credit: Roadside Attractions

Exclusive: Two images of isopods from Barry Levinson's unsettling eco-horror 'The Bay'

The more real a horror film is, the more upsetting it can be

I'll have a review of Barry Levinson's new film "The Bay" later today for you.  First, though, I thought I'd share a couple of images of the Isopods, the creatures that are the primary threat in the movie.

When Levinson was first approached by the producers, they wanted him to make a documentary about the way Chesapeake Bay is dying.  While he decided against doing the documentary because he saw one that he felt did a solid job of covering the topic, the more he read, the more fascinated he became by just how the bay is dying and why.

In particular, he was horrified by what he learned about isopods, and if you want to crank up the nightmares, just run a Google image search for "isopods."  Specifically "giant isopods."  Some of those actual images made their way into "The Bay," and at the Q&A after we saw the film, one of the audience members asked Levinson how much they had to exaggerate the isopods.  "We didn't," Levinson said.  "Those Google images you see are real."

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<p>Luke, Leia and Han may belong to Disney now, but their earlier adventures are still trapped in a tractor beam by 20th Century Fox.</p>

Luke, Leia and Han may belong to Disney now, but their earlier adventures are still trapped in a tractor beam by 20th Century Fox.

Credit: 20th Century Fox/Lucasfilm

Don't expect to see the original editions of 'Star Wars' on Blu-ray any time soon

The Disney/Lucasfilm has people excited, but for the wrong reasons

One of the first reactions yesterday across the Internet was rejoicing about the Disney/Lucasfilm deal because fans immediately assumed that Disney would make all their dreams come true of a Blu-ray release for the unaltered original 1977 version of "A New Hope."

Well, don't hold your breath.

Home video rights are a tricky thing, and in this case, fans can be forgiven for their immediate assumption.  After all, Disney bought Lucasfilm, right?  The problem is that there are existent deals in place concerning the first six films and the "Clone Wars" television series that aren't going to suddenly change just because of this sale.  Those obligations are going to be playing themselves out for several years to come.

In the case of the "Star Wars" movies, the earliest Disney would have a chance to release anything would be in the year 2020, and even then, they aren't going to have the rights to "A New Hope," which remain with Fox permanently.  Now, sure, companies can work out deals to release movies that other studios made.  The new James Bond box set, for example, is a Fox release even though MGM is the studio that has made those movies and Sony is currently releasing the new titles.  And the Alfred Hitchcock box that just came out from Universal features several Paramount and MGM titles as well.  It's certainly not unheard of, and I'm sure Disney would love to work it out.

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<p>This really is just the tip of the iceberg.</p>

This really is just the tip of the iceberg.

Credit: Walt Disney Company

What to watch for now that Disney owns Lucasfilm

Anything's possible in a world where this deal actually came together

Disney now owns the Muppets, Marvel, and Lucasfilm.  In breaking news, they are currently in negotiation with my parents to buy the rest of my childhood for an undisclosed six-figure sum.

And we don't get the first new "Star Wars" film until 2015, eh?  Guess I'm going to have to start exercising and eating right after all.

First, I think it's a safe bet that all of your poring over your "Star Wars" expanded universe novels to figure out if he's doing the Thrawn movies or the New Jedi Order series can relax.  They won't be adapting books.  They mentioned today that Lucas has written treatments for three new films, and there is no way he's going to let those films say "based on a story by Timothy Zahn".  Those stories exist, fans are able to enjoy them now, and simply translating them to the screen is a losing proposition on all sides.  The general public has no investment in those books, and for filmmakers who become involved with the series moving forward, there's no up side to simply adapting someone else's "Star Wars" story when there is almost limitless room to invent new stories that take place in that universe and even in that continuity.

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<p>Cute much?</p>

Cute much?

Credit: Walt Disney Feature Animation

Review: 'Wreck-It Ralph' is a winning new animated delight from Disney

HitFix
B+
Readers
A-
Gamers young and old should find themselves pumping quarters into this one

What is a Disney movie these days?

I know what an animated Disney film was, brand-wise, when I was a kid.  And when Disney reinvented themselves in the post-"Black Cauldron" world as a musical fairy tale factory, that was also a brand that was easy to identify.

But today, Walt Disney Feature Animation has perhaps the most tenuous grasp on identity that I've ever seen from them.  Part of that has to do with all the competition that exists today from Blue Sky Studios and Sony Animation and DreamWorks Animation… basically a bunch of companies that have gotten very good at making movies that play to the audience that was at one point the sole domain of Disney.  Then, of course, there's the in-house issue of Pixar Animation, a powerhouse team of storytellers who have arguably out-Disney'd Disney for the past fifteen years.  It's hard to be the top dog when you no longer are the first pick for animators looking for work, and these days, filmmakers who want to work in animation are probably looking to Pixar the signpost for what it is they want to do.

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<p>Hugh Jackman sported a familiar haircut today during the online chat about next summer's 'The Wolverine'</p>

Hugh Jackman sported a familiar haircut today during the online chat about next summer's 'The Wolverine'

Credit: 20th Century Fox

Five things we learned from today's 'Wolverine' online chat with Hugh Jackman

Sounds like they're pushing the character to a dark place, which could be great news

Film companies continue to push for new ways to reach out to audiences as they figure out when it's okay to start hyping a film.  Summer 2013 movies are already starting to stake their claims and premiere imagery and set visit glimpses and posters.  20th Century Fox has a pretty big stake in "The Wolverine" working, and one of the first big moments for them came last week when Empire magazine revealed some of what James Mangold told them for their upcoming story.  We wrote about that piece, which included a new image of Wolverine with his bone claws extended, last week, and it seemed like one more promising detail in what is shaping up as a very promising entry in the long-running "X-Men" franchise.

Today, James Mangold and Hugh Jackman spoke directly to fans around the world who tuned in for a live online chat that YouTube streamed from Sydney.  It sounds like more and more journalists are arriving in Sydney today for further press events in the days ahead, and according to Mangold and Jackman, they're only a few weeks away from wrapping the film.  I'm guessing there's got to be a trailer soon at this rate.  They've described the film, and now it's time to let people know what it's going to look like in motion, what that world is that they're talking about.  When Mangold references both "The Bicentennial Man" and "The Outlaw Josey Wales" as thematic touchstones, it's probably safe to assume this isn't just going to be another standard-issue superhero movie.

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<p>Amazingly, this is not a special effect.</p>

Amazingly, this is not a special effect.

Credit: Fox Home Video

Cary Elwes looks back at 'The Princess Bride' at 25

We also discuss 'From Earth To The Moon,' 'Saw,' and his charity work

I recently learned that I was the only person living in my house, out of six of us, who had seen "The Princess Bride."

I found this revelation to be completely inconceivable.

The only reason it came up was because I was sent the 25th anniversary edition of the film on Blu-ray to prepare for a conversation with Cary Elwes.  It's not like I needed the reminder of the film, since it's been one of those movies I've seen dozens of times since release, and each time, I am struck anew by just what a miracle it is.  It doesn't really feel like any other movie, and while I've spoken to both screenwriter William Goldman (who adapted it from his tremendous novel) and director Rob Reiner about it in the past, I'll take any opportunity to chat about it with people who worked on it.

When I spoke to Elwes, it was by phone, and he was in an airport sitting under what sounded like the loudest speaker in human history, with a long garbled announcement blaring every three or four minutes.  He seemed chagrined by the situation, but absolutely unflappable in how pleased he was to be talking about "The Princess Bride."  The sheer hideousness of the situation only made Elwes seem more likable.

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