• Brad Pitt has signed on to produce and possibly star in The Operators, which chronicles the rise and fall of General Stanley McChrystal during his time as commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan. David Michôd (Animal Kingdom, The Rover) will direct and write the script based on the late Michael Hastings‘ book The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan. [Deadline] READ FULL STORY
Tag: Helen Mirren (1-10 of 15)
An action movie like RED 2, which is based on characters from Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner’s comic book, isn’t exactly burdened with the restrictions of reality. Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) and his collection of Retired Extremely Dangerous operatives can blow up city blocks, surreptitiously hop-scotch across the globe, and ingeniously escape from the most dire of circumstances; and if some of their Houdini breakouts are borderline unbelievable, well… that’s part of the fun.
In RED 2, which arrives on Blu-ray tomorrow, Moses reunites with aging agents (Helen Mirren and John Malkovich) and his best gal (Mary-Louise Parker) to dismantle a secret cold-war weapon of mass destruction that was built by a semi-crazed physicist (Anthony Hopkins). At one point, time runs out on Mirren’s elegant killer, Victoria, and her MI6 superiors sign her death warrant. Pity the poor neophyte tasked with that assignment. Of course, she beats him senseless, but the movie simply ignored how she went from cold-clocking a would-be executioner to escaping detention and calling Frank from a London pay-phone. In a deleted scene from the new Blu-ray, we at least get to see how Mirren made her daring escape.
Click below for an exclusive deleted scene from RED 2: READ FULL STORY
• Oscar-winner Helen Mirren (The Queen) is set to star in an adaptation of Richard Morais’ debut novel The Hundred-Foot Journey. When a family is displaced from their hometown of Mumbai, they settle in a small town in the French Alps and attempt to open an Indian restaurant — a hundred feet away from Madame Mallory’s traditional French restaurant. Mirren will play Madame Mallory, a famous chef in the town who “wages war” with the family, but eventually takes one of the sons (90210’s Manish Dayal) under her wing. Lasse Hallstrom (Salmon Fishing in the Yemen) will helm the project for DreamWorks. Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey are producing. [Deadline]
Once an assassin, always an assassin seems to be the moral of RED 2.
In the second trailer for the sequel to 2010’s successful comedy/action flick RED, Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) and his girlfriend Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) attempt retirement normalcy, which means a trip to Costco. But, how could the ordinary suffice for someone so used to action? “You haven’t killed anybody in months,” Marvin Boggs (John Malkovich) helpfully reminds him. Besides, someone has just framed Frank and Marvin for a Cold War-era plot to get a destructive device into Russia, which has just been reassembled and activated. So, the Retired, Extremely Dangerous gang heads to Russia to consult with the mad scientist (a jovial Anthony Hopkins) who might know how to keep the bomb from going off and taking 11 million lives.
And then, the action and one-liners start. Check out the trailer below to see some shots of Bruce Willis punching people, Helen Mirren casually shooting two guns out of the front two windows of a car in motion, a sultry velvet fedora-wearing (and extremely tan) Catherine Zeta-Jones, and a few exploding toilets.
HBO's 'Phil Spector' is a compelling portrait of Phil Spector's dark and crazy charisma. But did he kill that girl?
In the week leading up to tonight’s premiere of the HBO original movie Phil Spector, the pre-release publicity has all been orchestrated around quotes from the film’s writer-director, David Mamet, claiming that the movie is not a docudrama, that it parts ways with reality — and, in Mamet’s own words, that it is “not about Phil Spector.” The film opens with a title that claims: This is a work of fiction. It’s not “based on a true story.” Got it? What we’re about to watch is so made up that it’s not even related to reality. (You’ve got to love those sarcastic quote marks. Very David Mamet dyspeptic.)
Though it seems likely that Mamet, with the presumed endorsement of HBO, was basically launching a pre-emptive strike at everyone from libel lawyers to critics of the movie who might be tempted to pounce on it for being inaccurate, I have to say that the effect of all this “It’s not about Phil Spector!” squawking was to dampen my original enthusiasm for seeing the film. I began to worry that Mamet would take the fascinating tale of Spector and his 2007 trial for the murder of Lana Clarkson, the troubled starlet who died of a gunshot wound to the mouth in Spector’s house on Feb. 3, 2003, and twist it into some heavily stylized, dead-zone Mamet rant-meditation on men, women, celebrity, media, and other Boring Important Topics. READ FULL STORY
A glibly violent lark about retired government secret agents — played by, among others, Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, and Helen Mirren — who find themselves thrust back on the job, the first RED had a great deal of fun staging action sequences with “older” actors at the center of them. Which is to say, they gave Helen Mirren a giant machine gun, and it was kinda amazing.
The sequel has a new director (GalaxyQuest‘s Dean Parisot), the same screenwriters (Jon and Erich Hoeber, based loosely on the graphic novel by Warren Ellis), and, as the new trailer makes clear, the same basic plot: Bruce Willis is retired (this time with his younger, thrill-seeking girlfriend played by Mary-Louise Parker), and finds himself the target of another seeming conspiracy to kill him. This time, it appears to involve Catherine Zeta-Jones (as an old flame) and Anthony Hopkins (as, well, the trailer barely features him, but we know he’s a missing Cold War scientist). And, yet again, Helen Mirren looks awesome kicking ass.
Check it out below: READ FULL STORY
Prize Fighter: Oscar buzz for older actresses Field, Mirren, Dench reflect importance of female storytelling
Hollywood may be filled with talented younger actresses, their fresh skin and high cheekbones readymade for lovingly placed close-ups and leggy magazine covers. But this year’s early Oscar race for best actress has the spotlight shining on a handful of older contenders — from Sally Field in Lincoln to Helen Mirren in Hitchcock and Judi Dench in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel — their veteran faces etched with experience, beauty, and perhaps a bit of wisdom.
“Older actors, especially women actors, have always been incredibly important to storytelling on the big screen,” Elizabeth Daley, dean of the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, told EW. “The characters they play are often what ground the story, and these actors are so good at what they do that their performances also elevate the films. So I would argue that every year there are films that feature good or great performances by older women. And years like this one, when many of them are being considered for awards, force us to publicly acknowledge their importance in compelling storytelling.”
Because the world would not be complete with just one film about the making of an Alfred Hitchcock classic, the upcoming HBO film The Girl (a.k.a., The One About The Birds) has been joined by the Oscar-baiting docudrama Hitchcock (a.k.a., The One About Psycho.) The first trailer for Hitchcock just hit the internet, and, as expected, the film looks to be a showcase for Anthony Hopkins’ Hitchcock impression. But the trailer is arguably stolen by Helen Mirren, playing Hitchcock’s fiercely devoted wife Alma. (Scarlett Johansson also appears as Janet Leigh.)
This is all well and good, but personally, I’m excited for the movie about the making of North by Northwest, which would theoretically star Ray Winstone as Hitchcock, George Clooney as Cary Grant, Michelle Williams as Eva Marie Saint, and Jon Hamm as James Mason. That movie is probably never happening, so watch this trailer and dream: READ FULL STORY
It might feel creepy to call a movie about the making of Psycho a “love story,” but that’s how Fox Searchlight and director Sacha Gervasi are pushing Hitchcock, which stars Anthony Hopkins as the iconic director and bevy of beauties as his leading ladies. Scarlett Johansson plays Janet Leigh, whose character Marion Crane has a date with the shower; Jessica Biel portrays Vera Miles, the level-headed heroine; and Helen Mirren is Hitch’s wife, Alma, his behind-the-scenes creative partner in every way. But the title of the film is not My Weekend With Janet or Hitchcock in Love. It’s simply Hitchcock, and for good reason. “Hitchcock’s so enigmatic in one sense,” says Gervasi, whose only previous feature was the 2008 documentary Anvil. “Someone who portrays zero emotion. We didn’t really know emotionally that much about Hitchcock, and suddenly you have this whole world that opens up when Anthony Hopkins plays the role. It’s extraordinary. And he really enjoyed tiptoeing up to people who had just arrived on the set and going, ‘Good evening.’ Making people jump. I think he really found the role quite delicious.”
Check out an exclusive first look at the new Hitchcock poster below: READ FULL STORY
The geriatric gang is getting back together — and getting some new (i.e. young) blood. Summit Entertainment announced today that Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, and Mary-Louise Parker have all signed on for RED 2, a sequel to the studio’s modest 2010 hit. (It grossed $199 million worldwide according to Box Office Mojo.)
Catherine Zeta-Jones and Byung-Hun Lee (G.I. Joe: Retaliation) have joined the cast, and Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest) will take over directing reins from the first film’s director, Robert Schwentke. (SPOILER ALERT: RED co-star Morgan Freeman isn’t returning due to the vexing fact that his character died in the first film.) Screenwriters Erich and Jon Hoeber are officially returning for the second installment; they began penning the script last year.
As is often the case with franchise sequels, RED 2 will take place largely in Europe. It’s set for release on Aug. 2, 2013.
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