Archive for April 4, 2012

‘Die Hard 5′ Snags a Pair of Russian Villains

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die hard 5 villain casting bruce willis

Production is about to begin on the fifth installment in the Die Hard franchise, bearing the punny title A Good Day to Die Hard. Bruce Willis will reprise his career-defining role as loose cannon, Irish-American cop John McClane – who’s really a fish out of water this time around, as he ends up battling baddies overseas in Russia while also reuniting with his son Jack (Spartacus Jai Courtney).

While there were rumors circulating a year ago that a member of the Gruber clan could be featured as the antagonist in Die Hard 5, that was long before any official plot details had been announced. Judging by today’s casting update – which concerns what are believed to be the two primary villain roles in the movie – McClane and Son will be facing much more generic foes ...

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‘Hunger Games’ Director Not Yet Confirmed for Sequel, ‘Catching Fire’ [Updated]

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Gary Ross Catching Fire

[SHOCKING UPDATE! GARY ROSS IS NOT DIRECTING THE SEQUEL CATCHING FIRE!!!]

The movie adaptation of The Hunger Games is an undisputed box office success, with a record-setting opening and over $350 million at the worldwide box office. One would think that with such a high level of achievement, Hunger Games director Gary Ross would be a lock for the in-development sequel, Catching Fire, but this apparently not the case.

We now have reports coming in that Ross in is pivotal negotiations with Lionsgate, the studio behind The Hungers Games, and that his return is far from being a sure thing.

To understand this situation, you first need some context:

As stated, Lionsgate owns The Hunger Games movies, and recently the studio merged with another small studio: Summit Entertainment, which owns The Twilight Saga movies. Summit ...

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‘Avatar 2′ Producer Talks the Sequel’s Potential Release Delay

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avatar 2 sequel release date delay

James Cameron’s name is trending online once again (did it ever stop?), thanks to his original mega-blockbuster, Titanic, beginning a 3D theatrical re-release today (at the time of writing this). It’s no shock then that journalists and news outlets are doing what they can to inquire about the upcoming sequels to the filmmaker’s 3D sci-fi epic Avatar.

Titanic and Avatar franchise producer Jon Landau has also been touring the press junket circuit of late, offering tidbits of information about Avatar 2 – which he says had already begun its arduous effects-work process. However, Landau is also suggesting that the massive nature of the sequel may mean that its previously-planned Christmas 2014 theatrical release date is no longer feasible.

When Empire sat down recently with Landau to chat about the dual Avatar sequels (specifically, the ...

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"Hunger Games" Sequel Director Not Set

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Unlike the film's stars, "The Hunger Games" director Gary Ross is not signed on for the sequel says The Hollywood Reporter. This has lead to discussions about a significant raise for the helmer to take the reins of the next film in the trilogy - "Catching Fire".

Despite making over $360 million thus far worldwide, 'Games' was not without its issues. Negotiations for Ross to do the first film were decidedly tough and he took a relatively low salary to co-write and direct the film - though he will collect a very nice 5% of the backend.

Ross didn't begin negotiations until early last month and now there's questions over whether he will return to begin filming the project this Fall. While he may have a lot of balls in his corner, major franchises from "Twilight" to "Harry Potter" have shown studios are more willing than ever to replace directors if needs be.

Lionsgate reportedly has a script from Simon Beaufoy which Ross has yet to revise. Another complication is Fox could exercise its option on Jennifer Lawrence for a "X-Men First Class" sequel which could cause issues with filming schedules and Lionsgate's already targeted November 22nd 2013 release date for 'Fire'.

More as it develops.

"Avatar 2" Hits 2015 At The Earliest?

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With the 3D "Titanic" re-release having gotten a lavish premiere and big promo push in the UK this week, producer Jon Landau has been out doing interviews. Chatting with Empire, the topic of "Avatar" sequels came up.

Last year it was thought that the next two films had been loosely targeting a December 2014 & 2015 release. Then in January this year Landau let slip it'd be a while longer - as much as two years further in fact (he later downplayed his comments).

This week he re-affirmed the suggestion, albeit in a carefully worded way - "We're not naming dates, but I think 2014 will be a tough date for us to make. It's about getting it right. Movies make release dates; release dates don't make movies".

Despite being a long way off, Landau says work is well underway - "WETA are already working and we have our core team, (animation supervisor) Richie Baneham and (digital effects supervisor) Nolan Murtha, working with us. And we're working on underwater performance-capture."

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