<p>Laurie Holden took some time out of a crazy Comic-Con schedule to talk to us about her hit show 'The Walking Dead'</p>

Laurie Holden took some time out of a crazy Comic-Con schedule to talk to us about her hit show 'The Walking Dead'

Credit: HitFix

Watch: Laurie Holden feels secure about her future on 'Walking Dead'

What's ahead in season two of the hit show?

Laurie Holden is no stranger to the world of the Comic-Con audience or television shows with rabid fanbases.  Her role as Marita Covarrubias on "The X-Files" was a key part of that show's underlying mythology.  She played a crucial part on "The Shield" as Agent Olivia Murray late in that show's run.  She's made a strong showing in horror films like "The Mist" and "Silent Hill."  And, of course, she played a major part in the first season of the TV adaptation of Robert Kirkman's "The Walking Dead," and that's why she was in San Diego two weekends ago.

I detailed the chaos surrounding our attempts at interviews for this show in the first piece I wrote, and in the midst of all of that, we did manage to wrangle a few minutes with Holden, who I met on the set of "The Majestic" over a decade ago.  She's one of Frank Darabont's favorite actors, one of those people who he turns to over and over like her fellow "Walking Dead" cast member Jeffrey De Munn, and she's a key member of the core cast.  On any other show, that would translate to job security for as long as there's a series.

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<p>Jonah Hill is probably not the dude you want to leave your kids with, all things considered, in David Gordon Green's new comedy 'The Sitter'</p>

Jonah Hill is probably not the dude you want to leave your kids with, all things considered, in David Gordon Green's new comedy 'The Sitter'

Credit: 20th Century Fox

Watch: Jonah Hill, Sam Rockwell, filthy language, and kids in 'The Sitter' red-band trailer

Wait... what is it that nice guys do best?

David Gordon Green is sitting somewhere this morning, watching the reactions to the new trailer for "The Sitter," and he's laughing himself silly at the frustration that "serious" film critics have with the direction his career has gone.

When I first met David, it was at the Ebert Overlooked Film Festival, where his film "George Washington" was being shown and celebrated.  For a short time, the easy way to describe Green's work was using Terrence Malick as a sort of touchstone.  Since "Pineapple Express," though, he's been doing something very different, indulging a side of himself that his film school friends all knew was there but that his earliest features didn't even remotely suggest.

I really like R-rated mainstream comedy David Gordon Green.  I think he's a very different filmmaker than earnest dreamy little indie drama David Gordon Green, and that's fine with me.  I'll take a film from either one of them, but what I like about R-rated mainstream comedy David Gordon Green is that he's flat-out crazy.  He does not care about the rules of what you "can" or "can't" do in a comedy.  He doesn't even seem to understand that there are rules, or that you aren't supposed to do certain things, or the the meaning of the word "taboo."  He is a gleeful anarchist, and I like that element of danger in his work.

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<p>Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds spend a considerable amount of time discussing the logistics of handling each other's junk in 'The Change Up,' and hilarity ensues.</p>

Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds spend a considerable amount of time discussing the logistics of handling each other's junk in 'The Change Up,' and hilarity ensues.

Credit: Universal Pictures

Review: 'Change-Up' wastes talented cast, makes Reynolds and Bateman too slimy

HitFix
C-
Readers
n/a
Leslie Mann stand-out in cast, still stranded by script

There was an episode of "The Sarah Silverman Program" in their final season where the large gay couple played by Brian Posehn and Steve Agee switched bodies when they both touched a Chinese dragon phone at the same time.  It was exactly as ludicrous as that sounds, and the entire episode was a very knowing riff on this entire weird subgenere of comedy.  There have been countless variations on this basic formula, so doing it today requires something different, some new perspective or insight or metaphorical journey that the body switch can illustrate.  The good news is that finally, date rapists and people who think Tucker Max is too "old-fashioned" have their very own "Freaky Friday."

It's a shame because the bare bones of the premise is fine, exploring the perceptions of married and single life from the other side of the fence.  You can absolutely do the smart version of this, but instead, this is the urgently dirty version, and it's too focused on shocking to do much else.  Here, when the film reaches for heart, it feels false.  It makes for a really uneven experience, a misfire of tone, and it commits the cardinal sin for me of being frantic instead of funny.

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<p>Bobcat Goldthwait's 'God Bless America' is one of the ten films that will be part of Toronto's Midnight Madness line-up this year at the International&nbsp;Film Festival.</p>

Bobcat Goldthwait's 'God Bless America' is one of the ten films that will be part of Toronto's Midnight Madness line-up this year at the International Film Festival.

Credit: Darko Entertainment

Toronto 2011: Midnight Madness features Bobcat, bad cops, nightmares to spare

Exciting line-up announced for this year's festival

Even before I started attending the Toronto International Film Festival, I was well aware of the reputation of their midnight movie programming, and in the years I've been attending, that reputation has been backed up with great choice after great choice. There was one day this spring, at the start of April, where something like three different choices from the previous year's programming was all released theatrically at the same time.  And these movies were some of the most talked about indie releases of the year, including "Insidious," "Super," and "Stakeland."

I was out this morning seeing something else when the announcement went live this morning, but all week long, Colin Geddes has been dropping hints and linking out to photos from the films, and I was guessing, and except for the one film that I've already seen, all of my guesses were wrong.

I'm okay with that.

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<p>Andy Serkis and WETA&nbsp;Digital do remarkable things to bring Caesar, the star of 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes,' to life</p>

Andy Serkis and WETA Digital do remarkable things to bring Caesar, the star of 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes,' to life

Credit: 20th Century Fox

Review: 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes' is smart, character-driven science fiction

HitFix
A-
Readers
A
Remarkable digital work brings old franchise to new life

As someone who has spent a fair amount of energy in the past criticizing the idea of prequels and the films of 20th Century Fox, it pains me to say that for the second time this summer, a prequel from Fox is actually a pretty hefty slice of entertainment, smart and soulful in a way I wouldn't have guessed.  "Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes" is entirely different than any other movie in the franchise, and that's one of its strengths.  The film isn't terribly surprising in terms of where it goes, but it is very clever in how it gets there, and it is driven largely by yet another groundbreaking performance from Andy Serkis, who is nothing less than the first digital age superstar at this point.

One of the first questions I had about this movie is "does this tie in directly to the series that already exists?", and it appears that the answer is "sort of."  There are definitely some direct references to the previous films, but for the most part, they're the sort of elbow-to-the-ribs references I'm not a fan of.  Someone yells "it's a madhouse," someone else plays with a broken Statue of Liberty toy, and someone else tells a "damn dirty ape" to take its paws off of him.  Those references got the snickers you'd expect, but they're quick and there aren't too many of them.  There are some overt story connections to the original films that play out via newspaper headlines and cable news stories we see in the background that I found more satisfying and interesting because of the way it suggests where this story could be heading if Fox decides to follow up this picture.

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<p>Olivia Wilde really should make an effort when she's going to be in front of the camera.&nbsp; I mean, please.</p>

Olivia Wilde really should make an effort when she's going to be in front of the camera.  I mean, please.

Credit: HitFix

Watch: Olivia Wilde is on the prowl in 'The Change-Up'

Plus a quick check-in on where they are with the 'TRON' sequel

In the past year, I think I've ended up interviewing Olivia Wilde three times now.

There are worse things to be paid for, all things considered.

The thing about spending an afternoon at a press event is that you end up seeing these people in their down moments, when they're not projecting their public persona for the camera, and occasionally you get a not-so-flattering look at the way people really behave.  Other times, someone comes across as entirely unaffected, and you realize they're very grounded.  That's Wilde.  She's very comfortable with the process at this point, and she doesn't seem to be terribly high-maintenance, hanging out during breaks in the same green room where the press was gathered.

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<p>It seems a safe bet that Ryan Reynolds will return as Hal Jordan for 'Green Lantern 2,' but what version of the film will we see?</p>

It seems a safe bet that Ryan Reynolds will return as Hal Jordan for 'Green Lantern 2,' but what version of the film will we see?

Credit: Warner Bros.

Does 'Green Lantern 2' really need to be 'darker' and 'edgier'?

And what does it mean if Martin Campbell's not back to direct?

When I read the piece over at the LA Times today about "Green Lantern 2" and the direction they're allegedly heading with it, my first thought is "They learned nothing from the first film."

I'm aware that some people actually liked the first movie.  I'm mystified by it, but I accept that to some people, it was acceptable.  I found the entire thing deeply frustrating for reasons I explained at length in my review when the film was released, but I also understand the inevitability of Warner Bros. trying to figure out how to squeeze more life out of the franchise.

I'm not exactly sure how it's news that Warner Bros. wants to move forward without Martin Campbell attached as director.  Campbell made it quite clear, even before the first film opened, that he wasn't going to return for a sequel.  Looking at the article today, though, it seems that Warner Bros. took all the wrong lessons away from the film, and it makes me think that when and if they make a sequel, it's going to be just as bad if not worse.

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<p>Norman Reedus was one of the cast members of 'The Walking Dead' that we caught up with in San Diego during Comic-Con this year</p>

Norman Reedus was one of the cast members of 'The Walking Dead' that we caught up with in San Diego during Comic-Con this year

Credit: HitFix

Watch: Norman Reedus and Steven Yeun talk 'Walking Dead' season two

Two cast members speak out at Comic-Con about the hit horror show

Comic-Con is a crazy blur of activity when you're trying to coordinate coverage, even with a team as good as the one we took this year.  We did very well at dividing things up, but every now and then, you come up a little short-handed and you end up scrambling.

In our case, we found ourselves short on the TV side on Saturday night when we were offered a chance to interview the cast of "The Walking Dead," and since I enjoyed the show, I jumped in to handle the conversations on-camera.  Unfortunately, we found ourselves in the middle of what seemed to be pure chaos on the part of the publicists handling the event, and even though we showed up exactly when we were supposed to, from the moment we began, we were told that the event was already running late and everyone had to go.

Maddening, really.  As we stood there, we watched them march Andrew Lincoln right by us, then Jon Bernthal, then Sarah Wayne Callies.  All of them were hustled into waiting cars and whisked off to a dinner with Frank Darabont.  Keep in mind, at this point, we hadn't heard anything about the creative shuffle behind-the-scenes, and earlier in the day, at the "Walking Dead" panel, there had been no indication that things were about to change.  It's one thing if we'd just shown up at that spot and tried to wrangle some interviews without an invitation, but we were there because they asked us to be there, and yet the closest we got to most of the cast was to watch them walk away.

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<p>Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds co-star in 'The Change-Up'</p>

Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds co-star in 'The Change-Up'

Credit: Universal Pictures

Watch: Ryan Reynolds and Jason Bateman on the benefits of a body swap for 'The Change-Up'

A rowdy conversation

You do not interview Ryan Reynolds and Jason Bateman sitting side-by-side.  There's no way to control that room.  All you can do as an interviewer is just throw them a question, sit back, and get out of their way.

A few weeks back, the three of us sat down to talk about their new film "The Change-Up," which arrives in theaters this weekend.  Having the two of them together, it seemed appropriate to ask them what they observed about each other when figuring out how to play characters who switch bodies with one another.  That's the whole key to this kind of movie working… you have to create two characters who are so distinct that when they do switch places, the audience can immediately see that reflected in behavior.

You'll see how wildly overpowered I was from the moment the tape started rolling.  I've interviewed both of these guys repeatedly at this point, and this was the very last interview of a very long day for them and for me.  I had already done all of my "Captain America" press by this point, and they had been sitting in those same two chairs since early that morning.  Basically, you're looking at three people who are already halfway out the door trying to hold a conversation.  As a result, they seem looser than they normally would be, and it's sort of a free-for-all.

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<p>Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones make first love hurt in 'Like Crazy'</p>

Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones make first love hurt in 'Like Crazy'

Credit: Paramount Pictures

Interview: Director Drake Doremus discusses his new film 'Like Crazy'

Plus check out a new trailer and poster for the Sundance sensation

Drake Doremus is having one of those moments that indie filmmakers dream of, and if anyone deserves it this year, he does.

The first time I heard his name was when I saw his film "Douchebag" at Sundance in 2010.  I enjoyed it, but it felt like one of those movies you see on the festival circuit and know will never end up playing theaters near 99% of your readership.  This year, I saw his new film "Like Crazy" at Sundance, and it floored me.  As much as I liked his earlier film, I wasn't ready for "Like Crazy."  It's a beautiful, incredibly well-performed piece that works because of how bluntly honest it is, how carefully it avoids cliche.  I found it to be almost as powerful a punch as last year's "Blue Valentine," and in particular, it is an amazing showcase for Anton Yelchin and Felicity Jones, the two young stars of the movie.

This afternoon, I got on the phone with Doremus to talk about his film and its impending release, and while it was just a short conversation, it was good to catch up with him and see how he's feeling as his film is being prepped for release by Paramount Pictures, which is very different than the fate of his last film.  I asked him if there was any difference for him in terms of process as he moves from very small films to slightly bigger films, and he took a moment to consider it.  "No, actually.  Essentially it's all about the performances and the emotions.  And this is still a tiny movie.  I try to approach it the same every time out."

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