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Tag: Keanu Reeves (1-10 of 16)

Sundance 2015: Keanu Reeves, Eli Roth, and Kevin Bacon lead the festival’s Midnight madness


With their respective track records for torture-porn provocation and monosyllabic action-movie acting, writer-director Eli Roth and Keanu Reeves aren’t exactly synonymous with indie excellence. Yet, the two have teamed up to deliver Knock Knock, the home-invasion thriller that’s screening in the Sundance Film Festival’s 2015 Park City at Midnight section—a horror-heavy programming slate known for yielding such out-of-nowhere hits as Saw and The Blair Witch Project.

The festival’s director of programming Trevor Groth seemed pleasantly surprised to be including Roth, the controversial goremeister whose Hostel films and 2002 breakthrough Cabin Fever display unvarnished glee for arterial splatter and abject suffering. “It’s fun to have him in here for the first time!” Groth says.

Home to many of the festival’s most boisterous screenings over the years, Midnight selections typically spotlight rollicking but less prestigious genre fare. And in 2015, that encompasses everything from raunch-comedy to straight-ahead horror to unclassifiable (yet violent and typically Sundance-y) in-betweeners. READ FULL STORY

Can Keanu Reeves save cinema?

Most big-budget action movies these days are just cartoons directed by bad animators. Somewhere between The Matrix and The Bourne Identity, the whole genre lost its brawl. You’ve seen one superhero defend his city from an airship armada, you’ve seen every superhero defend his city from an airship armada.

Then there’s John Wick. Simple story, not-so-simple thrills. The story: Someone kills an assassin’s dog, and the assassin (Keanu Reeves) wants vengeance. The thrills: The movie constructs action scenes with patience and delicacy, filming in steady shots that track the careful choreography of Reeves’ punch-shoot rampages. John Wick was directed by a stuntman, and the movie ripples with the straightforward pleasure of watching bodies move on screen the way bodies used to move before greenscreen turned every movie into a Who Framed Roger Rabbit reboot. READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Keanu Reeves takes lead in 'Replicas'

• Greg Kinnear, Jon Voight, Renee Zellweger, and Djimon Hounsou are set to star in Paramount Pictures’ Same Kind of Different as Me, EW has confirmed. Michael Carney will make his directorial debut. He co-wrote the script with Alexander Foard and Ron Hall. Based on the book by Hall and Denver Moore with Lynn Vincent, the story follows an art dealer (Kinnear) who befriends a homeless man (Honsou) in order to save his marriage to his wife (Zellweger). The unexpected friendship takes the three on an incredible journey, and helps Hall reconnect with his father (Voight). Mary Parent and Cale Boyter will produce through Disruption Entertainment along with Darren Moorman, Stephen Johnson, and Hall. Chris Bancroft, Hans Graffunder, Carney, and Foard will executive produce. Principal photography began on October 27 in Jackson, Mississippi.

• Keanu Reeves has taken the lead in Lotus Entertainment and di Bonaventura Pictures’ Replicas. Tanya Wexler is directing from a script by Chad St. John. Company Films’ partners Stephen Hamel and Reeves developed the script from Hamel’s treatment. The story follows a neuroscientist who will stop at nothing to bring his family back after a deadly car accident. Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Hamel, Reeves, and Fundamental Films are producing. Production is scheduled for spring 2015. [Deadline]

• Bruce Greenwood has signed on for the Dan Rather pic, Truth, starring Robert Redford as Rather with Cate Blanchett as his producer, Mary Mapes. James Vanderbilt will make his directorial debut from a script he wrote. Greenwood will play Andrew Hayward, president of CBS News who eventually fires Mapes. The film is based on Mapes’ memoir Truth and Duty: The Press, the President, and the Privilege of Power, which details Rather’s 2004 report claiming that George W. Bush received special treatment while in the Air National Guard during the Vietnam War. His reputation was tarnished, and Mapes was fired, when it was revealed that some documents may have been forged. Dennis Quaid, Elisabeth Moss, John Benjamin Hickey, and Topher Grace also star. The film is currently shooting in Australia. [THR]

Fox Searchlight acquired a Wired Magazine article by Joshua Davis, Meet The Man Who Sold His Fate to Investors at $1 a Share, which will be used as the foundation for the film, IPO Man. Jason Bateman will direct the film and star as a man who put himself out for public offering. Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster will pen the script. Bateman and Jim Garavente will produce the film through their Aggregate banner with Davis. [Deadline]

• Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Lost) is joining Will Smith in Sony’s untitled NFL concussion drama. Peter Landesman is directing the film, which follows neuropathologist Dr. Bennett Omalu (Smith) whose studies on chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) cause the NFL to take brain injuries seriously. Akinnuoye-Agbaje will play Dave Duerson, the real-life NFL safety who died in 2011 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest. Upon his request, Duerson’s brain was sent to researchers who concluded that he suffered from CTE as a result of football injuries. Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Alec Baldwin, Bitsie Tulloch, and Albert Brooks also star. Ridley Scott, Giannina Facio, David Wolthoff, Larry Shuman, and Elizabeth Cantillon are producing. Michael Schaefer and David Crockett are executive producing. [Deadline]

• Max Deacon (Into the Storm) has landed at The Call Up. Charles Barker is writing and directing the British action/sci-fi film, which is set in the world of computer gaming and technology. The film follows a group of skilled gamers who are invited to test a virtual reality game that brings modern warfare to life, and ultimately takes a dark turn. The film also stars Morfydd Clark (Madame Bovary), Ali Cook (The Anomaly), Parker Sawyers (Monsters: Dark Continent), Tom Benedict Knight (Dracula Untold), Boris Ler (In The Land Of Blood And Honey), Douggie McMeekin, and Adriana Randall. Matthew James Wilkinson is producing for Stigma Films and John Giwa-Amu for Red & Black Films. Alan Martin is executive producing. EOne has the rights for Germany, France, and Scandinavia. Altitude Film Sales will handle international. Shooting kicks off on Nov. 10 in Birmingham, England. [Deadline]

'John Wick' succeeds by avoiding excess (and being really fun)

So it may be strange to say this about a movie that consists of Keanu Reeves wrecking dudes across an entire city for an hour and a half, but John Wick feels surprisingly small for a modern action movie. And it’s such a great feeling.

First of all, if you haven’t seen John Wick, go see it now. There’s not a whole lot to be spoiled, really—but it’s simply way more fun to watch cold. The movie is totally worth your time. With that out of the way, let’s dig in on what makes John Wick feel so exceptionally good.


Alex Winter reveals totally excellent details about 'Bill & Ted 3'

Fasten your seat belts – Bill and Ted are going on another ride.

In an interview with Yahoo, Alex Winter finally gave an update on the long journey to a third feature film in the Bill & Ted franchise. A 23-year journey, to be exact. Winter played Bill S. Preston Esq. in the original 1989 science fiction comedy Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure and the sequel Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey two years later in 1991 opposite Keanu Reeves as Ted “Theodore” Logan. Now, everyone’s favorite time traveling slackers have gotten a little older.

“[Bill & Ted] will be 40-something and it’s all about Bill and Ted grown up, or not grown up,” Winter said. “It’s really sweet and really f—ing funny. But it’s a Bill & Ted movie, that’s what it is. It’s for the fans of Bill & Ted. It fits very neatly in the [series]. It’s not going to feel like a reboot. The conceit is really funny: What if you’re middle-aged, haven’t really grown up and you’re supposed to have saved the world and maybe, just maybe, you kinda haven’t?” In addition to the two films, the Bill & Ted franchise includes two television adaptations both titled Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventures, one animated and one live action. Both Winter and Reeves haven’t reprised their respective roles since proving the voice for their cartoon characters in one season of the series in 1990, right before the first sequel was made.

So, why the delay? “The thing we had going against us is that word got out,” Winter says. “That was kind of a bummer. It just takes a long time to put a movie together. Now we’re having to build this thing in public, which is fine. I just feel bad [the fans] have to get dragged through this long, boring, protracted process.”

Original screenwriters Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon have written the script for the film based on an idea formed with Reeves and Winter, and the team has secured a director in Galaxy Quest‘s Dean Parisot. “We’ve been working on drafts for the last couple of years,” Winter said. “The script’s been finished for a while, but comedy is so specific. We’re in that world where producers are on, financiers are on and we’re just working and reworking the script.”

Well, don’t work too much on it. Unlike Bill & Ted, we don’t have all the time in the world to wait!

Keanu Reeves takes things personally in 'John Wick' trailer

In the new action movie John Wick, Keanu Reeves plays an ex-hitman who comes out of retirement to track down the gangsters who have taken everything from him. The first trailer for the film just turned up on the interwebs, featuring both mucho mayhem and a lot of what we hope to be deliberately tongue-in-cheek hard-boiled-homaging dialog. Our favorite exchange? “How good’s your laundry?” “No one’s that good.”


Casting Net: Maya Rudolph reunites with Tina Fey, Amy Poehler; Plus, Keanu Reeves, more

• Maya Rudolph will reunite with her Saturday Night Live alums Tina Fey and Amy Poehler for Universal’s The Nest. She’ll play a childhood friend of Poehler and Fey’s characters, who are sisters who throw one last blowout in their parents’ up-for-sale house. Greta Lee (Girls) has also joined the cast. She’ll play a woman who gets a “pity invite” to the party. Paula Pell wrote the screenplay, and Jason Moore (Pitch Perfect) will direct.  [THR; Deadline] READ FULL STORY

'Speed' 20th anniversary: Screenwriter Graham Yost looks back on 'the bus movie' that became a classic

Screenwriter Graham Yost, now the showrunner of FX’s Justified, admits that the plot of Speed sounds ridiculous: A bomb on a bus will detonate if the bus travels below 50 mph. But when the movie was released June 10, 1994, a funny thing happened: It became a hit with moviegoers and critics alike. To quote EW’s grade-A review: “The film takes off from formula elements — it’s yet another variation on Die Hard — but it manipulates those elements so skillfully, with such a canny mixture of delirium and restraint, that I walked out of the picture with the rare sensation that every gaudy thrill had been earned.”

Here, on the 20th anniversary of the film’s release, Yost looks back on early script changes (Jack’s partner, Harry, was supposed to be the bad guy), casting picks (Ellen DeGeneres?), the twist he’s most proud of (it was just cans!), classic lines (thank you, Joss Whedon), and the dark night when he thought the movie had been ruined. READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Chiwetel Ejiofor could be the next Bond villain; Plus, Ryan Reynolds, more

• Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) is reportedly the front-runner to antagonize James Bond in the next film in the series. According to the report, no offer has been made yet. Daniel Craig will return to star as 007, and Sam Mendes, who directed him in Skyfall, is returning to direct. Production is supposed to begin this summer on Bond 24, scheduled for a Nov. 6, 2015, release date. [The Wrap] READ FULL STORY

Keanu Reeves talks his directorial debut 'Man of Tai Chi' -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

Keanu Reeves had been searching for a way to get into directing when he realized the story he wanted to tell was one he learned six years ago.

EW has an exclusive look at a Reeves interview, in which he talks about meeting Man of Tai Chi‘s star, Tiger Hu Chen, on the set of The Matrix, and listening to the stories of his Tai Chi training. So when Tiger approached Reeves with the idea of collaborating, Reeves realized he had finally found “the story to tell.”

Watch the clip below:

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