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Tag: Anna Kendrick (1-10 of 21)

Anna Kendrick dives into 'The Last Five Years' with Jeremy Jordan -- FIRST LOOK

Anna Kendrick did not expect to become Hollywood’s resident musical theater It Girl, even though she earned her first Tony Award nomination at 12 years old and made her film debut in the cult musical comedy Camp.

With Pitch Perfect under her belt and the upcoming big-box items Into the Woods and Pitch Perfect 2 on deck, Kendrick’s next belting role is significantly more indie. She’ll play Cathy Hyatt in writer-director Richard LaGravenese’s film adaptation of Jason Robert Brown’s musical The Last Five Years, an Off Broadway two-hander that tells the story of a couple’s five-year relationship through two interweaving storylines (one moves forward, the other backwards).

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, EW has an exciting official first look at Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan (Smash, Broadway’s Newsies) in the roles of struggling actress Cathy and rising novelist Jamie. The film is in the can and about to screen for buyers, who would be wise to snatch up the alluring Kendrick and Jordan and the giant fanbase that the cult musical has accrued since debuting in 2001.

We caught up with Kendrick to talk about her surprising arrival on Hollywood’s movie-musical scene, getting drunk with her co-star, and whether there’s another stage turn in her future. READ FULL STORY

Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson will return for 'Pitch Perfect 2'

I hope you Pitch Perfect fans are ready for more cup action and horizontal running, because Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson have officially signed on to reprise their roles in Pitch Perfect 2, which will be directed by Elizabeth Banks.

Kendrick and Wilson make up two members of the good-girls-gone-semi-bad singing group, The Barden Bellas. So the question is: Who will get the first solo?

Pitch Perfect 2 is set to hit theaters May 15, 2015.

Sundance 2014: Ryan Reynolds talks to the animals in 'The Voices' and Aubrey Plaza goes zombie in 'Life After Beth'

There’s a certain kind of oddball film that seems like it could only have its coming-out party at a place like Sundance. Marjane Satrapi’s dark serial killer comedy The Voices is one of those films. The best way I can think to describe it is: imagine Fight Club if Brad Pitt’s part was played by a talking dog and cat.

Tyler Durden comparisons aside, Satrapi, the Iranian director of 2007′s Persepolis, has created a totally unique, genre-defying film. Which isn’t to say The Voices is great. Far from it. It’s wildly uneven and it never finds a tone and sticks with it. But it’s a boldly gutsy and giddy experiment mainly because it gives us a likable, sympathetic, gee-whiz protagonist (Ryan Reynolds) and then spends the next hour and a half showing him go on a psychotic killing spree. The hook of the film –and it’s a doozy — is that through it all, Reynolds  is egged on in his homicidal deeds by his cat (Mr. Whiskers) and cautioned against them by his dog (Bosco), both of whom talk to him. Like the devil and angel that hover over all of our shoulders, Mr. Whiskers is a nasty piece of business who speaks in a Fat Bastard Scottish brogue, while Bosco is a dumb-but-moral mutt with a southern drawl.

Despite his hunky, leading-man good looks and relative box-office currency (Green Lantern and R.I.P.D. aside), Reynolds has always been an interesting actor because he’s at least willing to take chances. Sometimes those chances pan out, sometimes they don’t. But looking at movies like The Nines and Buried, you can’t say that he plays it safe. He had to know going in that The Voices would never be a mainstream multiplex hit, but that doesn’t stop him from delivering a surprising and ballsy performance. Jerry begins the film as a bubbly, optimistic factory worker who we slowly learn through sessions with his court-appointed shrink (Jacki Weaver) has a history of mental illness. And, of course, there’s the whole talking pet thing.

When Jerry develops a crush on one of his coworkers (Gemma Arterton), Bosco encourages asking her out. Meanwhile, Mr. Whiskers only cares about whether or not he will close the deal and have sex with her (well, that and making sure that Jerry feeds him on time: “Where the f—’s my food, f—face?”). Jerry’s date goes horribly, tragically, fatally wrong. So does the one after that with another coworker (an excellent Anna Kendrick). And as Jerry’s world starts to unravel, Bosco and Mr. Whiskers do their hilarious, chatty push-and-pull routine yanking at the wishbone of his soul.

I wish I could say that the second half of the film lived up to the promise of the first. Or that the film probably won’t offend some folks with its glib, played-for-laughs treatment of mental illness. Still, The Voices is never less than unpredictable and amusing in a that’s-so-wrong kind of way. For those who take their comedy black, you could do a lot worse.

Like Ryan Reynolds, Aubrey Plaza is an actor who’s drawn to rolling the dice and taking risks — usually with a deadpan expression on her face. In Safety Not Guaranteed, The To Do List, and on Parks and Recreation, Plaza has a special and all-too-rare gift for totally committing to embarrassing situations and finding the absurd humor in them. Which is exactly what she does again in the gonzo zombie rom-com Life After Beth.

I could say that Plaza’s new film is the funniest zombie comedy since Shaun of the Dead, but the truth is there haven’t been many decent contenders for that title. I laughed while watching Life After Beth, but not as much, or as hard, as I felt like I should have. Like The Voices, it promises more than it ultimately delivers.

Written and directed by Jeff Baena, Life After Beth stars Dane DeHaan as Zack, who, at the opening of the film, is grieving over the death of his girlfriend (Plaza), who was bit by a snake while hiking. As he mourns along with her parents (a pair of aces John C. Reilly and Molly Shannon), he beats himself up over all of the things he never got to say to her while she was alive. But he soon gets a second chance when Beth reappears. She’s not a zombie exactly — not yet, at least. And the film has fun with the nonchalance with which Reilly and Shannon meet her return. After all, why look a gift horse in the mouth?

At first, Zack is freaked out. But soon he’s taking advantage of his romantic do-over with the girl he loves — even if she is acting a bit…odd.  Plaza’s Beth is moody, violent, horny, and what’s the deal with her new sweet tooth for smooth jazz and the strange decomposing rash on her face? Scared that she’s becoming one of the walking dead, Zack asks her: “You don’t want to, like, eat me, do you?” Plaza’s response: “Zack, not with my parents around!”

Things get worse when other deceased folks start turning up wanting to listen to smooth jazz and eat people too. It turns out World War Z has arrived and its soundtrack is Spyro Gyra and Chuck Mangione.

Life After Beth has a slew of strong supporting performances from Reilly and Shannon, Paul Reiser and Cheryl Hines (as Zack’s oblivious parents), and Anna Kendrick (there she is again!). But it’s Plaza who literally and figuratively chews the movie up. With a premise as absurd as Life After Beth‘s is, it’s a testament to Plaza that she gives it everything she’s got. The sight of this wonderful actress — bloody, foaming at the mouth, and lumbering around with a stove strapped to her back is one I won’t forget anytime soon.

Sundance 2014: Magnolia and Paramount pick up Joe Swanberg's Anna Kendrick movie

Christmas came early for Joe Swanberg, Magnolia Pictures, and Paramount Pictures. In the first announced deal of the Sundance Film Festival, which began Thursday, the two film companies agreed to co-distribute Happy Christmas, the holiday dramedy that stars Anna Kendrick, Melanie Lynskey, Mark Webber, Lena Dunham, and Swanberg, who also wrote and directed. Terms were not announced.

Magnolia, which distributed Swanberg’s last movie, Drinking Buddies (also starring Kendrick), will distribute the film in theaters and via VOD. Paramount Home Media Distribution will distribute internationally and handle U.S. physical home entertainment. “Happy Christmas is a personal and important film for me and I can’t imagine better partners to help connect it with audiences around the world,” Swanberg said in a statement.

In the film, Kendrick plays a woman who crashes in her older brother’s basement after a recent breakup. She reconnects with a college friend (Dunham), and their antics shake up the household and provoke her more responsible sister-in-law (Lynskey), whose own life, it turns out, isn’t everything she had planned.

Magnolia is eyeing a theatrical release in the summer 2014. Drinking Buddies opened last July 25.

Director Joe Swanberg talks about his new comedy 'Drinking Buddies'

drinking-buddies

We wouldn’t want to say exactly how many movies prolific indie filmmaker  Joe Swanberg has directed because he might have finished another one in the time it’s taken to write this sentence. But we can say that his new film, the brewery-oriented comedy Drinking Buddies is his most high-profile to date thanks to a cast which boasts Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, Anna Kendrick, Ron Livingston, Jason Sudeikis, and Swanberg’s fellow auteur, Ti West. Drinking Buddies arrives in theatres August 23 — the same day cinemagoers will be able to see both Swanberg and West in the horror-comedy You’re Next — and is currently available to watch on VOD.

Below, the Chicago-based Swanberg explains why he felt like Michael Bay while he was making the movie and talks about the paltry three other films he has awaiting release.

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Viral video star Sophia Grace Brownlee joins 'Into the Woods' as...

Ready to be “excited and scared”?

Viral video star Sophia Grace Brownlee (of “Sophia Grace and Rosie” fame) will play Red Riding Hood in Disney’s upcoming adaptation of the musical Into the Woods, directed by Rob Marshall, EW has confirmed.

Into the Woods tells the story of the Baker (James Corden) and his wife (Emily Blunt), who make a deal with an evil witch (Meryl Streep) in order to conceive. Their journey into the woods brings them face-to-face with many famous fairy tale characters, including Red Riding Hood (Brownlee), The Wolf (Johnny Depp), Cinderella (Anna Kendrick), and Jack (Les Miserables’ Daniel Huttlestone) and his magical beans.

For those familiar with the work, the young age of Brownlee may give viewers pause. She’s 10, and will be metaphorically seduced by The Wolf (a.k.a 50-year-old Depp) and then develop a little bloodlust by the end of the movie.

For some context, check out Broadway star Danielle Ferland singing Red Riding Hood’s big number (full of veiled sexual references!) from the Broadway production of Into the Woods:
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Casting Net: Jessica Chastain in talks for 'A Most Violent Year'; Plus, Linda Cardellini, Anna Kendrick

• Jessica Chastain is eyeing the starring role in J.C. Chandor’s new film A Most Violent Year. Chastain would play opposite Javier Bardem in the film. [Variety]

• Christopher Nolan‘s Interstellar has rounded out its cast nicely today with the addition of John Lithgow, Ellen Burstyn, and Mackenzie Foy (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2). Sources close to the project told The Wrap that the actors were in talks to join the project — a story about explorers who travel through a wormhole into a different dimension. Already attached to the star-studded film are Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Casey Affleck, and Michael Caine. [The Wrap]
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Casting Net: Anna Kendrick in talks for 'Into the Woods'; Plus Felicity Jones, more

• Anna Kendrick (Up in the Air) is in talks to play Cinderella in Disney’s adaptation of the musical Into the Woods, not to be confused with Disney’s live-action adaptation of Cinderella. That version of the glass-slippered heroine will be played by Lily James. In Into the Woods, Kendrick would be part of a larger ensemble and paired with a prince played by Chris Pine (Star Trek Into Darkness). Kendrick showed off her singing skills on film in 2012′s Pitch Perfect, but has been performing in musicals since she was a child. [THR]

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'Drinking Buddies' trailer: Jake Johnson and Olivia Wilde might be more than BFFs -- VIDEO

You know that thing where your best friend starts dating someone and you don’t really like him or her? Well, what happens when you realize that the reason is because … you like your best friend?

That’s one of the problems Kate (Olivia Wilde) and Luke (Jake Johnson) have in this summer’s Drinking Buddies, a comedy about best friends with uncertain chemistry and significant others. Kate’s boyfriend, Chris (Ron Livingston), isn’t sure how Kate really feels about him. On a couple’s weekend with Kate and Chris and Luke and his seemingly uptight girlfriend, Jill (Anna Kendrick), the pairings are mixed up, revealing Kate and Luke’s undeniable attraction.

Check out Johnson’s awesome beard and Wilde’s cool-girl deadpan in the new trailer below:
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Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson are 'Drinking Buddies' -- EXCLUSIVE POSTER

DRINKING-BUDDIES-POSTER

The new rom-com starring Olivia Wilde and Jake Johnson as friends with the possibility of benefits has an official poster, seen here first on EW. READ FULL STORY

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