Tag Archives: Shia LaBeouf

Friday, July 20, 2018

Vote for the best drama movies of 2018; Currently Bette Midler’s “Freak Show” is #5 out of 60

Mister D: So far only about 500 people have voted on this list and Freak Show is starting out in great shape. Let’s keep her in the spotlight. Make sure to go to Ranker and sign up. It’s easy. Then head on over and Click Here to vote. Freak Show Poster Ranker Vote for the best drama movies of 2018… July 14, 2018

Vote for the best drama movies of 2018.

Whether they’re about historical events or fictional stories of romance, tension, and love, the best drama movies of 2018 left viewers inspired and emotional. What were the best drama movies this year? Help decide below. Featuring romantic dramas, coming-of-age movies, biopics, and comedy-dramas, this list of good 2018 shows includes 12 StrongChappaquiddickLean on Pete, and Permission. Good drama films usually feature compelling characters and intriguing storylines, avoiding melodrama in favor of more realistic plot lines and complicated protagonists. Which drama movies of 2018 fit such a description? Vote on this list of 2018 drama movies. Give an up vote to the best drama movies of 2018 and down vote anything you feel is overrated or downright bad.

1

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12 Strong Chris Hemsworth, Michael Shannon, Michael Peña12 Strong (also known as 12 Strong: The Declassified True Story of the Horse Soldiers) is a 2018 American war drama film directed by Nicolai Fuglsig. Following the September 11 attacks, Task…more

2

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Forever My Girl Alex Roe, Jessica Rothe, John Benjamin Hickey Forever My Girl is a 2018 romantic drama film directed by Bethany Ashton Wolf. After being gone for a decade, a country star (Alex Roe) returns home to the love (Jessica Rothe) he left behind.

3

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Thoroughbreds Olivia Cooke, Anya Taylor-Joy, Anton Yelchin Thoroughbreds is a 2018 American drama thriller film directed by Cory Finley. After years of growing apart, upper-class teenagers Lily (Anya Taylor-Joy) and Amanda (Olivia Cooke) rekindle their …more

4

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Final Portrait Geoffrey Rush, Armie Hammer, Clémence Poésy Final Portrait is a 2017 British-American drama film directed by Stanley Tucci. In Paris 1964, famed painter Alberto Giacometti (Geoffrey Rush) asks James Lord (Armie Hammer), the American…more

5

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Freak Show Alex Lawther, Abigail Breslin, Bette Midler Freak Show is a 2018 American drama film directed by Trudie Styler, based on the novel by James St. James. Despite attending an ultra-conservative high school, Billy Bloom (Alex Lawther) decides…more

6

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The Strange Ones Alex Pettyfer, James Freedson-Jackson, Emily Althaus Strange Ones is a 2017 American drama film directed by Christopher Radcliff and Lauren Wolkstein. Mysterious events surround two travelers as they make their way across a remote American …more

7

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Nostalgia Jon Hamm, Nick Offerman, Amber Tamblyn Nostalgia is a 2018 American drama film directed by Mark Pellington. A group of people is connected through a loss.

8

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The 15:17 to Paris Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, Spencer Stone The 15:17 to Paris is a 2018 American biographical drama film directed by Clint Eastwood, based on the 2015 Thalys train attack. Three Americans (Spencer Stone, Anthony Sadler, and Alek …more

9

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First Reformed Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, Cedric the Entertainer First Reformed is a 2017 American drama thriller film directed by Paul Schrader. Grieving over the death of his son, an ex-military chaplain (Ethan Hawke) is further challenged when a young …more

10

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Leave No Trace Ben Foster, Thomasin McKenzie, Jeff Kober Leave No Trace is a 2018 American film directed by Debra Granik, based on the book My Abandonment by Peter Rock. A father (Ben Foster) and his 13-year-old daughter (Thomasin McKenzie) are living …more

11

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Every Day Angourie Rice, Maria Bello, Debby Ryan Every Day is a 2018 American romantic-drama directed by Michael Sucsy, based on the novel by David Levithan. 16-year-old Rhiannon (Angourie Rice) falls in love with a spirit named A, a traveling…more

12

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Disobedience Rachel Weisz, Rachel McAdams, Alessandro Nivola Disobedience is a 2017 British-Irish-American drama film directed by Sebastián Lelio, based on the novel by Noami Alderman. A woman (Rachel Weisz) returns to her Orthodox Jewish home …more

13

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Eighth Grade Elsie Fisher, Josh Hamilton, Emily Robinson Eighth Grade is a 2018 American comedy film directed by Bo Burnham. An eighth grader (Elsie Fisher) struggles to finish her last week of classes before embarking for high school.

14

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The Rider Brady Jandreau, Tim Jandreau, Lilly Jandreau The Rider is a 2017 American drama film directed by Chloé Zhao. After suffering a near-fatal head injury, a young cowboy (Brady Jandreau) undertakes a search for a new identity and what it …more

15

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Breath Simon Baker, Elizabeth Debicki, Samson CoulterBreath is a 2018 drama film directed by Simon Baker, based on the novel by Tim Winton. Two teenage boys form an unlikely connection with an older surfer (Simon Baker).

16

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Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Jonah Hill Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot is a 2018 American drama film directed by Gus Van Sant, based on the memoir by John Callahan. After nearly losing his life in a car accident, a slacker…more

17

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Shock and Awe Woody Harrelson, Tommy Lee Jones, James Marsden Shock, and Awe is a 2017 American drama film directed by Rob Reiner. Journalists investigate the assertions by the Bush Administration concerning Saddam Hussein’s alleged possession of weapons of …more

18

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A Fantastic Woman Daniela Vega, Francisco Reyes, Luis Gnecco A Fantastic Woman is a 2017 Chilean drama film directed by Sebastián Lelio. Marina (Daniela Vega), a waitress who moonlights as a nightclub singer, is bowled over by the death of her …more

19

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Lean on Pete Charlie Plummer, Chloë Sevigny, Travis Fimmel Lean on Pete is a 2017 British drama film directed by Andrew Haigh, based on the novel by Willy Vlautin. A teenager (Charlie Plummer) gets a summer job working for a horse trainer and befriends…more

20

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The Catcher Was a Spy  ...  Read More

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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Tony’s Snub The Hollywood Connection

Los Angeles Times By Steven Zeitchik April 30, 2013, 9:59 a.m.
Bette with Ali MacGraw

Bette with Ali MacGraw

NEW YORK — When Shia LaBeouf dropped out of the Broadway revival “Orphans” because of a tiff with Alec Baldwin, only to be replaced by Ben Foster, the question became: Which of the two actors might take the Tony love from LaBeouf? As it turns out, it was a moot point. The show did get an acting Tony nomination, but it was for Tom Sturridge, a little-known actor who had done mostly screen work in his native Britain. And even Sturridge was the exception. Most of the actors who landed nominations Tuesday morning have been toiling in theater in recent years. The Hollywood actors who made up the 2012-2013 Broadway class? They were almost nowhere to be seen. There was no Tony nomination for Al Pacino in “Glengarry Glen Ross,” nada for Scarlett Johansson in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” nothing for Cuba Gooding Jr. in “A Trip to Bountiful,” nor Sigourney Weaver in “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” nor Bette Midler in “I’ll Eat You Last.” That last one, which traffics in Hollywood themes, is perhaps most notable. This on top of the actors who never stood a chance coming in to the nominations: Katie Holmes in the long-gone “Dead Accounts,” or Jessica Chastain for the equally done “The Heiress.” Sure, there was Tom Hanks, but in Nora Ephron’s final work — and with a film career that’s been in a bit of an odd place for the past few years—making him sui generis in more ways than one. So what does the Hollywood-Broadway nexus become from here? Big actors like to head to the stage because prestige movies are harder than ever to get, and because it establishes acting chops (even if it also, er, causes them some issues). And Broadway producers still like stars: though some of these shows flopped, there’s no question that productions like “Glengarry” were sustained because of known names. But after a year when so many stars didn’t find the accolades they wanted, don’t be surprised if the Hollywood movement to Broadway tapers off, if only slightly, if only for a minute. Hollywood still will make its presence felt on Broadway in other ways. A couple of new shows, after all, are derived from movies. But you wouldn’t exactly call it Hollywood glitz: “Kinky Boots,” which led all Tony nominations with 13, was a quirky film that made just $2 million at the U.S. box office.

  • Theater Review: Bette Midler Gives A Gleefully Engaging Performance
  • Why Bette Midler Deserves A Tony Nomination…
  • Liz Smith: Bette Midler Brings Sue Back To Life
  • STAGE PORTRAIT: Bette Midler in I’ll Eat You Last: A Chat With Sue Mengers
  • Bette Midler Regrets Not Taking More Chances In Film Roles (New Interview)
  •  ...  Read More

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    Tuesday, April 23, 2013

    Bette Midler has joined Tom Hanks as a certified Broadway smash!

    OMG How Broadway’s Big Hollywood Gambles Are Paying Off By Brent Lang | The Wrap April 23, 2013 4-19-2013-5-50-41-AM Bette Midler has joined Tom Hanks as a certified Broadway smash. Her one-woman show about super-agent Sue Mengers, “I’ll Eat You Last,” officially opens Wednesday, but sales during previews have been strong. In fact, many of the New York theater season’s big ticket debuts appear to have lived up to the hype, at least in terms of box office returns. Hanks’ “Lucky Guy,” a love letter to tabloid newspaper culture penned by the late Nora Ephron, grossed an astonishing $1.4 million last week and played to sell-out crowds. The critical reception has been mixed for the show, with some reviewers faulting it for being overly episodic. Yet those kind of numbers are rarely achieved by a straight dramatic play. The only shows to out-gross “Lucky Guy” during that time span were three big-budget, musical smashes, “Wicked,” “The Lion King” and “The Book of Mormon.” Reviewers won’t weigh in on “I’ll Eat You Last” until Wednesday, but so well it has been well received. Last week, “I’ll Eat You Last” set a new record for the Booth Theater, where it is being shown, grossing $686,031 for seven performances, according to data from the Broadway League. The previous record was held by “Other Desert Cities,” which earned $586,512 during the week of Dec. 12, 2011. Like Hanks, Midler’s show played to capacity crowds. The Booth is substantially smaller, offering roughly 4,000 fewer seats than the Broadhurst Theater, where “Lucky Guy” is playing, Also, demonstrating box office prowess are a pair of high-profile musicals, “Matilda” and “Motown.” After opening two weeks ago to glowing reviews comparing it to “The Lion King,” “Matilda” netted gross $1.13 million. That’s its biggest gross since the U.K. show kicked off preview performances this month. Likewise, “Motown” returned to the million dollar club after a week that saw grosses dip below seven digits. A “Motown” publicist told TheWrap that the show had given away a number of press tickets the prior week. Not everything on Broadway is clicking. Casting “Game of Thrones” dragon lady Emilia Clarke as Holly Golightly couldn’t save “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” It closed Monday after 17 preview and 38 regular performances, the victim of lackluster reviews. Likewise, “Orphans” has not been able to translate intense tabloid coverage into monster ticket sales. The revival of Lyle Kessler’s play became a staple of gossip pages after original star Shia LaBeouf abruptly quit the play over reported clashes with co-star Alec Baldwin. When play opened last week, critics were lukewarm in their assessment of the show and new star Ben Foster. Ticket sales have been respectable, but not sizzling. “Orphans” grossed $522,036 last week, according to the Broadway League. Unlike “Lucky Guy” or “I’ll Eat You Last,” seats were left unsold. Baldwin, it appears, is no match for Tom and Bette.
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    Monday, February 25, 2013

    Star Power Comes To Broadway

    The Wrap Tom Hanks, Bette Midler, Alec Baldwin Bring Star Power to Broadway Published: February 25, 2013 broadway-news2 Can any of the major star-driven plays set to open on Broadway over the next few months match the off-stage drama that consumed the theater world last week? It would be hard for any play to top the rumors and Twitter meltdowns that accompanied Shia LaBeouf‘s eleventh-hour exit from “Orphans” with less than a month to go before its Broadway debut. But fret not theater fans, stars so big they need only use their first names (“Bette” and ‘Tom” and “Alec”) are still on tap to blaze across the greater Broadway area. After all, it’s nearly spring — that time of year when a horde of Hollywood stars make the cross-country pilgrimage to New York to prove their theatrical mettle — and maybe pick up a Tony Award to boot. Last season, theater producers benefited enormously from this talent infusion. Thanks to star-studded revivals, such as “Death of a Salesman” with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Andrew Garfield, which arrived with higher ticket prices, Broadway hit a record $1.14 billion in sales in 2011-12, according to the Broadway League. The lineup of plays and musicals hitting Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters is again a star-studded one, filled with stage newbies and theater veterans. Tom Hanks and Jane Lynch will be making their Great White Way debuts this season (Lynch, jumping in as a replacement in “Annie”), while old hands like Alec Baldwin will again tread the boards. A number of hot talents are making their presence felt behind the scenes. “Kinky Boots,” a new musical from pop icon Cyndi Lauper, and “Matilda,” a musical adaptation of the Roald Dahl children’s book from Australian comedian Tim Minchin, are two shows are arriving with big expectations. For producers, the appeal of going with a star is obvious. Having someone like Hanks above the title can mean big money. Premium tickets for “Lucky Guy” are currently on sale for $350. But the hazards can be great too, even for film and TV actors who were enthusiastically received in prior stage engagements. Take Scarlett Johansson: She won a Tony three years ago for “A View From the Bridge” but found that taking on the sultry role of Maggie in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” left critics cold. Here’s a look at some of the stars soon heading for New York stages. BROADWAY HOLLAND TAYLOR Play: “Ann” Where/When: Vivian Beaumont Theatre. Previews begin Feb. 18, opens March 7. Theatrical Experience: Taylor, who wrote “Ann” in addition to starring in it, has been a force in theater for decades, appearing on stage in Los Angeles and New York in plays like “Breakfast With Les and Bess” and the original productions of “Butley” and “The Cocktail Hour.” Why We’re Psyched: As viewers of “Two and a Half Men” know, Taylor, who plays a man-chasing mother on the popular sitcom, has a dry delivery that can make any quip sing and sting. In the role of the late Texas Gov. Ann Richards, she has been given the rare politician who also knew a thing or two about selling a joke. Just re-watch her 1988 DNC speech in which she said George H.W. Bush had been “born with a silver foot in his mouth,” to get a flavor for her populist humor. Taylor couldn’t ask for better material when it comes to getting an audience’s endorsement. KEITH CARRADINE Play:Hands on a HardbodyWhere/When: Brooks Atkinson Theatre. Previews began Feb. 23, opens March 21. Theatrical Experience: He’s no stranger to Broadway, having earned a Tony nomination for “The Will Rogers Follies.” Why We’re Psyched: Carradine has an easygoing charm and an impressive set of pipes. The star of “Deadwood” and “The Duellists” has picked an idiosyncratic vehicle for his return to the musical theater. “Hands on a Hardbody” is derived from a 1997 documentary about a group of Texans who undergo feats of endurance to win a truck. Think of it as a fresh spin on “They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?,” except a little funnier. With a book by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Doug Wright (“I Am My Own Wife”) and music by Phish member Trey Anastasio, there’s plenty of star power to go around in this slice-of-life tale. TOM HANKS Play: “Lucky Guy” Where/When: Broadhurst Theatre. Previews begin March 1, opens April 24 Theatrical Experience: Pretty limited. This A-lister made his theater debut as a servant in a production of “The Taming of the Shrew” at the Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival, according to the New York Times. “Lucky Guy” marks his first time on Broadway. Why We’re Psyched: It’s Tom “Forrest Gump” Hanks in a play by the late, great Nora Ephron. Their previous collaborations include beloved romantic comedies like “You’ve Got Mail” and “Sleepless in Seattle,” so when they get together they have a history of sparkle. This play centers on a tabloid columnist in 1980s New York, a bygone era before Disney and Guy Fieri took over Times Square. Hanks and Ephron should make for spirited tour guides through all that urban rot.

    EMILIA CLARKE & GEORGE WENDT ...  Read More

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    Friday, February 15, 2013

    Is There Really A Superstar Backlash On Broadway?

    Mister D: I think you really have to take into count we haven’t even begun the general public sale. Also the national campaign has not even been rolled out yet. After that one can talk about whether there is a backlash or not… Bette300 New York Post B’way: starlight starblight Backlash may hurt Midler show By MICHAEL RIEDEL Last Updated: 11:33 PM, February 14, 2013 Maybe she should sing. Tickets went on sale last week for “I’ll Eat You Last,” a one-woman play starring Bette Midler, but there were no fireworks at the box office. Backers were confident that the sale, offered exclusively to American Express cardholders, would reap at least $500,000, possibly $750,000. A disappointed production source puts the wrap at less than $150,000. The general public can snap up tickets beginning Sunday, and the producers are hoping to get a lift from an ad blitz over the weekend. But the lackluster start is further evidence that big stars just aren’t drawing on Broadway the way they once did. Evan Agostini/Invision/AP Bette Midler’s not singing, and neither is her show’s box office. I reported a few weeks ago that sales for “Lucky Guy,” starring Tom Hanks as newspaper columnist Mike McAlary, were just OK. The advance has improved since then, but, at about $5 million, it’s still far short of the $10 million or so Julia Roberts, Hugh Jackman, Daniel Craig and Denzel Washington racked up in seasons past. The producers of “Lucky Guy” are confident, however, that Hanks will join the $10 million club by the first preview on March 1. A little poke from this column the other week, and they revamped the ad campaign. The artwork now features a photo of Hanks, and the show is billed as a “New York play by Nora Ephron.” “Orphans,” starring Alec Baldwin and Shia LaBeouf, isn’t going to be critic-proof when it opens on April 7. Sales simply aren’t that strong yet, despite a new ad featuring photos of Baldwin and LaBeouf. (The old ad featured cans of tuna, which may have excited a few stray cats in Shubert Alley but didn’t do much for theater-goers.) “There are too many stars on Broadway right now,” says a veteran producer. “The public is starting to take them for granted.” Fairly or not, Al Pacino’s getting blamed for what some producers are calling a “superstar backlash.” Pacino cleaned up in “Glengarry Glen Ross,” but the production and his performance were panned by critics and disappointed audiences. “People got burned on Al,” another veteran producer notes. “And ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ ” — starring Scarlett Johansson — “is hardly a thrilling evening in the theater. I think the public’s getting picky. It’s not enough to have a name. The star has to be good. The production has to be good. And the star has to be doing something the audience wants to see them doing.” That may be the biggest strike against Midler. Her fans want her to sing — which she doesn’t do in “I’ll Eat You Last.” She plays the late Hollywood agent Sue Mengers, a larger-than-life showbiz creature with a very colorful past. The tag line on the poster art reads: “A chat with Sue Mengers. She was more than an agent. She was a star.” The trouble is, outside of the 90210 ZIP code, nobody’s ever heard of her. I’m not saying that Midler and “I’ll Eat You Last” will wind up in the dustbin the way Katie Holmes and “Dead Accounts” did. Good reviews and positive word-of-mouth can turn even the most obscure play with a cast of nobodies into a hit. But I think the get-a-star-and-they’ll-come formula is beginning to lose its potency. One star who’s cleaning up on Broadway right now is Barry Manilow at the St. James. He’s giving his audience precisely what they want — one hit song from the ’70s after another. Plus glow sticks! His run ends March 2, though executives at Jujamcyn Theaters, which owns the St. James, would be thrilled if he’d extend. The show is sold out most nights, with an average ticket price of $165. It may be wishful thinking, but there’s talk of involving Manilow in the Tony telecast this year. One idea floating around is to have him and Midler open the show with a medley of Broadway standards and a few songs from her first album, “The Divine Miss M,” which Manilow produced, thrown in for kicks. Now that would be giving them what they want.
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    Friday, September 28, 2012

    “Parental Guidance,” Entertainment Industry Has Huge Economic Impact On Georgia

    Pickens Progress Films shot in Ga. generate $3 billion this year Entertainment industry economic impact in Georgia up nearly 30 percent Wednesday, 26 September 2012 08:16 | Written by staff ATLANTA, September 24, 2012 — The Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office, a division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD), announced today that Georgia-lensed productions generated an economic impact of $3.1 billion in the state during FY12 (July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2012), a 29% increase from FY11. “The 2012 fiscal year saw record investment in the state by the entertainment industry, with more than $879.8 million in direct spending,” said GDEcD Commissioner Chris Cummiskey. “The film industry’s impact will have a lasting effect on Georgia’s economy for years to come.” Georgia was home to 333 feature films; television movies and series; commercials; and music videos that were shot across the state during FY12. On Friday, the Georgia-filmed “Trouble with the Curve” starring Clint Eastwood, Justin Timberlake and Amy Adams was released nationwide. Other Georgia-filmed movies slated to hit theatres in the next few months include “Flight” starring Denzel Washington on November 2, and “Parental Guidance” starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler on December 25. On April 13, 2013, Legendary Entertainment will release the Harrison Ford project “42” and Universal will release, “Identity Thief” starring Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy on May 10. Other Georgia projects expected to be released next year include “The Internship” starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson; “Devil’s Knot” starring Colin Firth and Reese Witherspoon; “The Killing Season” starring John Travolta and Robert De Niro and the Savannah-filmed “CBGB.” In addition, a record number of television shows were shot in Georgia during FY12, including AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” CW’s “The Vampire Diaries,” BET’s “Reed Between the Lines,” “The Game,” and “Let’s Stay Together”; “Family Feud”; VH1’s “Single Ladies”; USA’s “Necessary Roughness” and “Royal Pains”; Lifetime’s “Drop Dead Diva”; and many more. Feature films in preproduction or currently in production in Georgia include the second feature in the billion dollar ‘Hunger Games’ franchise “Catching Fire”; “Scary Movie 5”; “Getaway”; “Last Vegas” starring Michael Douglas, Kevin Kline, Morgan Freeman and Robert De Niro; and “Ten” starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. “Our competitive incentives, talented crew, diverse locations and accessibility give us an edge when productions are picking a location,” said Lee Thomas, the Director of the Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office. ““All of these assets build upon an infrastructure that is increasingly positioning Georgia among the go-to locations for entertainment productions.” Additional Georgia-filmed movies that have been released in recent months include Tyler Perry’s “Madea’s Witness Protection”; “Lawless” starring Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy; “The Watch” starring Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller; and “The Odd Life of Timothy Green” starring
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    Sunday, January 1, 2012

    Coming Soon: Movies Of The New Year!

    Movies in 2012: Superheroes gone wild Published: Sunday, January 01, 2012, 8:00 AM By Stephen Whitty/The Star-Ledger Happy New Year. Or is it? Well, for diehard fantasy fans, comic-book buffs and science-fiction enthusiasts, 2012 promises 12 months of pure pleasure. For other moviegoers, it could be a bit more problematic. There’s still some sorting out to do — like finding definite dates (and names) for “Untitled David Chase Project” and “Untitled Osama bin Laden Project.” And other interesting movies are sure to be added. But so far, the big-deal dramas seem to be hiding. Still there are already some unusual trends. Like several adult-child/impossible-parent stories, done as comedies and dramas. A few fairy tales turned into action pictures. Way too many Channing Tatum movies. And old hits, rereleased with new 3-D, to get you to pay up a second time. Still, forewarned is forearmed — so here’s what lies ahead JANUARY The first month of the year always plays like the last month of the old one, as films that had only one-week, Oscar-qualifying runs (“Rampart,” “We Need to Talk About Kevin,” “Coriolanus”) get real openings, and others go into wider release. A moviegoer could have a satisfying month just catching up. Katherine Heigl as Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum in “One for the Money.” Interested in new pleasures? “Red Tails” tells the story of the Tuskegee Airmen, with the terrific Terrence Howard. Director Steven Soderbergh does a stripped-down spy tale in “Haywire,” and “One for the Money” stars Katherine Heigl as Jersey bounty hunter Stephanie Plum. And here comes “Beauty and the Beast” again — this time, yes, with those funny glasses and an extra dimension. FEBRUARY Typically one of the worst months of the year, as an Oscar-distracted Hollywood starts randomly throwing things into theaters. How random? How about that least-loved “Star Wars” episode, “The Phantom Menace,” now in 3-D? (Great — even more Jar Jar.) Or a “Ghost Rider” sequel. Or something called “Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds.” (If he really wants to do a good deed, he could start by leaving his name out of his titles.) In any case, it’s probably best just to focus on offerings like “The Woman in Black,” with Daniel Radcliffe in his first post-Potter film as a haunted lawyer. And “This Is Not a Film,” a genuinely heroic act from banned Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi. MARCH A month often aimed at vacationing students of all ages. So for the youngest, there’s “Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax,” a CGI ‘toon that could recapture the charm of the same studio’s “Horton Hears a Who.” For older fantasy fans, there’s the teens-vs.-teens adventure “The Hunger Games,” and “John Carter,” which finally brings Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Martian adventures to the screen. Adult drama lovers, meanwhile, can look forward to “Being Flynn,” with Robert De Niro as a scarily awful parent, and “The Raven” with John Cusack as a mystery-solving Edgar Allen Poe. Both are probably better bets than Gerard Butler as a soccer-mom-chasing lothario in “Playing the Field,” Jonah Hill in “21 Jump Street” and Julia Roberts as the Evil Queen in “Snow White.” Or “Wrath of the Titans” and the return of those angry Greeks — this time, let’s hope, with something better than ViewMaster effects. APRIL Traditionally, another rotten month, as studios try to clear their shelves before the summer. So now we get an “American Pie” sequel, “American Reunion.” And a fifth “Scary Movie” farce. And some very peculiar casting. I mean, Sean Hayes as Larry in “The Three Stooges”? Zac Efron as a haunted war vet in “The Lucky One”? Shia LaBeouf in a bootlegging comedy called “Wettest County”? More interesting choices include “Seeking a Friend at the End of the World,” an offbeat apocalyptic romance with Steve Carell. And I’m looking forward to Sylvester Stallone’s “A Bullet in the Head” and a rereleased “Titanic” — only because action auteur Walter Hill is directing the first one, and perfectionist James Cameron will get the 3-D in the second absolutely right. MAY Summer’s here, at least at the box office, and if you have any doubt, just look at this four-week lineup: Week One: “Marvel’s The Avengers,” with Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and other superheroes finally teaming up for their own all-star movie. Week Two: Tim Burton and Johnny Depp joining for a revamp of TV’s “Dark Shadows,” campy fave of Baby Boomer monster fans. Week Three: “Battleship,” the ballyhooed — and definitely peculiar — reworking of the rainy-day game as a Navy-vs.-aliens epic. Week Four: “Men in Black 3,” with Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones back for a time-travel tale that sends Smith into the ’60s. Not a fanboy of any kind? Check out “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” with the famous guide now turned into a Cameron Diaz comedy, or “The Dictator” with the non-PC Sacha Baron Cohen as a farcical tyrant. And no true movie fan will want to miss “Moonrise Kingdom,” which reteams singular director Wes Anderson with longtime collaborator Bill Murray — and adds Tilda Swinton to make it even more interesting. JUNE Another crowded month, with some face-offs. Into the new fairy-tale-as-action-movie fad? Then contrast-and-compare “Snow White and the Huntsman” to “Jack the Giant Killer.” Need a cartoon for the kiddies? Take your pick – with “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted” landing the zoo critters in a circus, and “Brave,” set in auld Scotland. There are some one-of-a-kind attractions, too. Like “Rock of Ages,” the mullet-and-power-ballad Broadway hit, now with Tom Cruise. Or the twisted, if self-explanatory, “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” And sure to be astounding is Ridley Scott’s sci-fi “Prometheus,” with Charlize Theron, a story from one of the “Lost” scribes and, it’s rumored, just a hint of “Alien.” JULY So, yeah, there’s a Ben Stiller comedy (“Neighborhood Watch”) another self-promoting Tyler Perry movie (“Tyler Perry’s The Matchmaker”) and further who-asked-for-‘em sequels to “Ice Age” and “Step Up.” Oh, and “Ted,” a twisted comedy with Mark Wahlberg and a talking teddy bear that sounds like “The Beaver,” only less so. But basically this month divides into two. The first half is ruled by “The Amazing Spider-Man” which tries to erase bad memories of the last sequel by starting things all over with Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone and 3-D. And making the most of two-dimensions two weeks later is the enormously anticipated “The Dark Knight Rises,” which promises an IMAX-sized conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s terrific trilogy. AUGUST A strange sort of early Halloween, as at least five movies — “Warm Bodies,” “The Apparition,” “Sinister,” “7500” and “The Possession” — bring on a heroic zombie, a spooky flight, a curse and a couple of hauntings. All that’s missing is the jack-o-lantern. And the rest of the month follows their move toward genre, with new spy Jeremy Renner coming into “The Bourne Legacy,” and the Jennifer Garner rom-com fantasy, “The Odd Life of Timothy Green.” Worst dumb idea? Could be remaking “Total Recall,” minus Arnold Schwarzenegger. Best dumb idea? Might be another gleefully stupid “The Expendables” with Schwarzenegger — and Stallone, plus old Chuck Norris himself. SEPTEMBER Another, perpetually awful movie month, padded out with sequels nobody asked for (yet another “Resident Evil” splatterfest), rereleased hits (“Finding Nemo,” in 3-D of course) and second-tier comic-book heroes (“Dredd,” which at least can’t be worse than the first, catastrophic “Judge Dredd”). Two glimmers of hope remain, however. One is “Argo,” a true-life thriller set during the Iranian hostage crisis, directed by star Ben Affleck — who, so far, is two-for-two in his filmmaking career. And the second is “Savages,” a drug-cartel movie from Oliver Stone, who returns to bloody screen violence — and reunites John Travolta and Uma Thurman. OCTOBER Is 3-D really enough of a reason to reboot “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “Halloween”? Again? Apparently, although neither promises anything truly new — just like yet another Robert De Niro comedy about a bickering family (“The Big Wedding”), and one more Liam Neeson-gets-ticked-off thriller (“Taken 2”) What does sound like it has potential, however, is Tim Burton’s feature-length expansion of his early monster cartoon “Frankenweenie.” And “The Gangster Squad” promises plenty of retro thrills, with Josh Brolin and Ryan Gosling as L.A. lawmen and Sean Penn at his most feral as the corrupt and corrupting Mickey Cohen. NOVEMBER What did we do to deserve this? Don’t know, but this month features two meddlesome ladies cracking wise — Barbra Streisand, as an impossible momma in “My Mother’s Curse,” and Bette Midler as a pushy grandma in “Parental Guidance.” Eeyore himself couldn’t do such braying. There are a couple of less predictable options, too — like the outer-space drama “Gravity,” with George Clooney and Sandra Bullock on a troubled mission, or “47 Ronin,” a samurai epic with Keanu Reeves. But the month really comes down to two very different blockbusters — “Skyfall,” with the return (at last) of James Bond, and “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part II” with Edward and Bella facing their most dangerous challenge yet. Besides parenthood, that is. DECEMBER At this stage, only the biggest films have claimed one of these coveted, pre-Oscar dates. But so far, there’s something for almost everyone. Warner Bros. Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway, Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby and Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan in “The Great Gatsby.” Among the holiday presents for fans? A brand-new Quentin Tarantino (an all-star, spaghetti-Western mashup, “Django Unchained”) and a new-but-still-familiar Peter Jackson (the Middle Earth adventure, “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”). Plus Judd Apatow checks in on the Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann unhappily marrieds from “Knocked Up” in “This is 40.” And Ang Lee presents himself with a new challenge with “The Life of Pi,” the story of a boy, a lifeboat — and a Bengal tiger. That one’s in 3-D — as is “The Great Gatsby,” oddly enough, with the often-frenetic Baz Luhrmann directing Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic. And epic in every way should be Steven Spielberg’s long-in-development “Lincoln,” with Daniel Day-Lewis fighting his wife, his Cabinet and the Confederacy. But not vampires. That’s another movie.
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