Welcome to The Extras! A daily dose of all the smaller movie related news, clips and just plain cool stuff that you might have missed!
We’re still keeping things Oscary around here, so we kick off today with a vid that’s certain to get a few fallopian tubes twitching. Yes, that’s right, it’s really cute kids! And this time they’re reneacting the 2013 Oscar nominees!
So last week we learned that Peter Dinklage would actually be playing the “main antagonist” in X-Men: Days of Future Past instead of the diminutive Canadian superhero Puck as most people predicted. This left a lot of people scratching their heads, as midget supervillains are not exactly dime a dozen. That’s when somebody thought, “Hey, director Bryan Singer said they would have an all CG character. Maybe he’s that guy?!” Nope. Wrong again.
“He’s not going to be a CGI character. He’ll be himself. Not that he’ll be playing Peter Dinklage, he’ll be playing this character. It’s not a shy character. He’s just such a phenomenal actor; I’m a huge fan of Peter’s and Game of Thrones. He was my first choice and I was really happy [about the casting].”
As the official comic book fanboy around these parts, I have to admit I’m stumped. I can only think of MODOK, but he just doesn’t gel with what we know of the film.
I hate to break it you, but you’re old. How old? How about “Sam Raimi’s Army of Darkness came out 20 years ago this week” old!
This new poster for Evil Dead just took the lead in the “Laziest Movie Posters of 2013 Awards”. They literally took the same poster from last year, cropped it, threw some mid-opacity red Photoshop paint bucket action on there and changed the font. Done. Cheque’s in the mail.
The original Die Hard is arguably a perfect action movie. Well at least its target audience thinks so. That target audience of course being people possessing brains. But if you’re one of the brainless who still hasn’t come around, then here, let director Brad Bird explain it:
“Bruce Willis’ John McClane is in the tradition of Sean Connery as James Bond and Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones – a hero who shows fear. He’s a guy who is continually petrified by what’s happening to him, but that doesn’t keep him from pushing through it. And instead of making the hero smaller for the audience, it makes him larger – because we recognize the fear. Alan Rickman was a fantastic villain, too.
John McTiernan’s direction is an amazing piece of intricate craftsmanship. What a lot of filmmakers have trouble communicating is a sense of geography. For instance, one floor of a building under construction looks a lot like any other floor. But McTiernan put in little things, like a Playboy centerfold hung up by a construction worker. At first it seems like a visual joke, but it’s really there to identify that floor, so when Willis encounters it again, the audience knows exactly where he is. Many directors also shoot action very sloppily – they shoot up close and cut around a lot and put in all these big noises to distract you. But in Die Hard, you know where every character is every second of the movie. Things are going by at a fast clip, but you’re never lost.
Most action movies have great sequences, but they aren’t great movies. Die Hard starts great and just stays at that level from beginning to end.”
I love how in the first of the these two new featurettes for Jack the Giant Slayer, star Nicholas Hoult says his character of Jack “is not your typical hero”, then in the next breath describes him as a dreaming farmboy with a sense of adventure, which is pretty much nearly every fantasy hero’s origin story since Tolkien first picked up a pen.
If you’ve been waiting eagerly for Elysium, local boytjie Neil Blomkamp’s followup to the modern sci-fi classic District 9, then you were probably pretty cheesed off that the film’s release date was pushed back from March to August. Well you’re about to get cheesier still, as Blomkamp reveals that the film is actually pretty much done already.
“Elysium is basically done at the end of February. I have some straggling VFX shots that go into April but it’s almost done. The stuff looks absolutely amazing.”
“It’s kind of weird that it sits on a shelf and doesn’t come out until August 9th but I think a summer release is fantastic for the film.”
But not too worry, Blomkamp is using this shelf time to already kick things off on his next project, Chappie. The Province reveals that “the director has already begun prep work on a third sci-fi feature that will take him back to Johannesburg for principal photography,” and that the sci-fi comedy will be written by his wife and District 9 co-screenwriter Terri Tatchell.
It appears that one of sci-fi fans’ favourite debates may possibly have been settled. And like so many cool things on the internet it comes from Reddit. One Redditor claims to have info that should settle the debate once and for all on who is actually left infected at the end of John Carpenter’s The Thing. Clearly, SPOILERS ahead. Though the only way I can think of how you’ve managed to not have the ending to a movie that came out in 1982 spoiled for you by now, is if you are perhaps Helen Keller.
A friend of mine, back when he was an assistant, spent a great deal of time with John Carpenter doing interviews and the like for video games and comic projects. I was discussing my conversation with Larry Turman with this friend and he said “You know, I asked John Carpenter about The Thing.”
“Oh yeah? What did he say?” I asked.
“He said he never understood where all the confusion came from. The last frame of The Thing is Kurt Russell and Keith David staring each other down, harshly backlit. It’s completely, glaringly obvious that Kurt Russell is breathing and Keith David is not.”
I looked at my friend for a minute, soaking it in. Straight from the horse’s mouth.
“That’s a pretty subtle cue to expect the audience to absorb having seen severed heads grow spider legs and run around,” I said.
“That’s the genius of The Thing,” my friend said, and we moved on to other subjects.
Now before you all rush off to your DVD players, I should just let you know that somebody has already checked, and David actually does exhale a tiny bit during the exchange. Unfortunately, there are so many other gaffs in The Thing that this brief cardio episode could possibly be a mistake. Personally, I’m of the opinion though that there’s no way to know for certain and that’s what Carpenter and God intended.
Anybody else always wanted to own a toy that features a vintage car covered in horse manure? Just me? OK then. I guess, I’ll have this new proposed Back To The Future tie-in toy all to myself then.
Despite the fact that lately he’s become about as funny as a bot fly infection (google at your peril), somebody is still willing to give Adam Sandler money to make movies. He’s signed on to a still untitled romantic comedy that would possibly see him pairing with his The Wedding Singer and Fifty First Dates co-star Drew Barrymore for a third time (which should hopefully soften the Sandler blow), in a story that follows “a man and a woman who, after a disastrous first date, get trapped at a family resort with their kids from previous marriages in tow.” Romantic shenanigans predictably ensue.
I’d never heard of Vietnamese action film Bụi Đời Chợ Lớn (I’ll just leave the punctuation up to you) before today, but any movie that recreates the gang fighting scene from Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” music video, except with Mauy Thai and machetes instead of sequined leather jackets and far too much Jerry Curl juice, certainly gets my attention.
The film’s lead star and action co-ordinator Johnny Ngyuen is actually a well known figure in Hollywood stunt circles. He took on Jet Li and Tony Jaa in Cradle 2 the Grave and The Protector respectably, and is actually the man under the green goblin mask in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man and played ol’ webhead himself in the sequel.
Pro tip: When looking for a new job, it always helps when you’re the star on a critically acclaimed award winning show. For example, just ask Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul on how he got the lead gig in video game adaption Need for Speed.
“[It was] all thanks to Steven Spielberg, because he loves Breaking Bad. It was like, ‘Yep, I’m going to give you this.’ I was in London when I got the phone call. I think I said, ‘Really? Okay. Wow.”
And if that style of casting surprises you, then Paul suspects you’ll probably be caught even more unawares for the movie itself.
“Need For Speed is going to surprise everybody. I think a lot of people are thinking it’s going to be this car film, but it’s not that at all. There’s no actual narrative in the game, it’s just superfast cars with the point of view of the driver: his point of view as his car blasts around. And, of course, cops chasing them. It’s just plain make believe, pure imagination – it’s really, truly a blank canvas using really incredible supercars.”
So what Need for Speed is going to be a hard hitting character drama about an amphetamine addict who is kicked out on the street and decides to go cold turkey while living out of an abandoned old street racing car? Just let me know when I should be expecting my cheque, Hollywood.
I’m not the biggest fan of nitpicking, even though I am prone to it myself from time to time. But when it comes to the hilarious jokesters over at CinemaSins, the can pick those nits all day long as far as I’m concerned. And for the latest installment of their “Everything wrong with…” series we turn our pedantic attentions to Chris Nolan’s twisty dream thriller Inception.