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'Jurassic World': See the first images from the set of next summer's dinosaur flick -- EXCLUSIVE

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On April 14, filming began on Jurassic World, the fourth installment in the Jurassic Park franchise (due June 12, 2015), and EW has already scored the very first photos from the secretive set in Hawaii. Details on World — which stars Bryce Dallas Howard (The Help) and Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) and is exec-produced by Steven Spielberg — are scarce, but director Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed) promises plenty of paleontological action. “Yesterday I was under a construction crane with Chris Pratt, covered with dirt, eyeballing the exact height of the dinosaur trying to kill him,” he says. “We both cracked up laughing. Sometimes you just have to stop and let the joy take over.” READ FULL STORY

Gregg Allman biopic 'Midnight Rider' will resume, move production to LA

Production on Midnight Rider will resume in June but will relocate from Georgia to Los Angeles in the aftermath of a deadly on-set train track accident which killed assistant camera operator Sarah Jones in February.

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Casting Net: Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly to play 'Border Guards'; Plus, Sharon Stone, more

Step Brothers and Talladega Nights co-stars Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly are in talks to re-team for Sony’s Border Guards. The comedic duo would play a pair of friends who decide to become boarder guards and end up stranded in Mexico with no way to get back. Their longtime collaborator Adam McKay may direct, and The Thick of It‘s Jesse Armstrong is writing the script. [Deadline] READ FULL STORY

Box office brief: Will Christian audiences turn out for 'Heaven Is for Real'?

It’s no secret that Christian-themed films have the potential to be box office gold, but even though faith-based audiences are starved for more material, it doesn’t always pan out the way studios might hope.

While Paramount’s expensive and provocative Darren Aronofsky-directed Noah continues to climb the steep slope toward domestic profitability and Mark Burnett and Roma Downey’s Son of God failed to reach Passion of the Christ heights (after seven weeks in theaters it still hasn’t even made Passion‘s opening weekend numbers), the independently released God’s Not Dead came out of nowhere and stunned the major studios with its mighty box office ascent. The $2 million film, now playing in 1,860 locations, has made nearly $41.5 million in just four weekends in theaters.

Now, TriStar Pictures is rolling out its drama Heaven Is for Real on Wednesday in 2,400 locations. Based on the best-selling book by Pastor Todd Burpo about his real-life encounter with the divine, Heaven Is for Real tells the story of his young son, who claims to have visited Heaven during a near-death experience. Greg Kinnear portrays the pastor in the adaptation, and newcomer Connor Corum plays his son Colton. Despite the heavy religious bent, analysts believe that the film will play to both faith-based and mainstream audiences and predict a $20 million five-day opening for the $12 million film. READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Brad Pitt may star in Stanley McChrystal pic; Plus, Helen Mirren, more

• 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

Box office update: 'Rio 2' wins by a beak on Friday with $12 million

In the first true horse race of the year, the family-friendly Rio 2 narrowly flew past Captain America: The Winter Soldier to take the Friday top spot. Rio 2, the tropical fantasy about birds, friendship, and primary colors, also beat out its predecessor’s opening numbers. Rio – the first movie I ever took my young daughter to, incidentally — earned $10.2 million when it opened on Friday back in April 2011. This bodes well for the Fox/Blue Sky Studios 3D animated movie’s chances of besting the original’s $39.3 million opening weekend haul.

Captain America, which torched the competition last weekend with $95 million, was forced to settle for a close second with $11.9 million. Meanwhile, the new horror flick Oculus, which scared up $4.9 million, fended off the crinkly-eyed advances of Kevin Costner in his sports flick wheelhouse Draft Day for third place.

Rounding out the Top 5 is the YA chest-and heart-thumper Divergent, which rallied for $2.4 million in its fourth week of release. READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Gerard Butler to battle the elements in 'Geostorm'; Plus, Javier Bardem, more

• Gerard Butler is attached to star in the sci-fi adventure Geostorm. Longtime writer-producer Dean Devlin (Independence Day) is writing and directing the movie which posits a world where satellites can control the climate. When they begin to malfunction, Butler’s “charming satellite designer” has to work quickly to save the world from the imminent storm. [THR]

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'X-Men: Apocalypse': Who will return? What new mutants may appear? Scoop on the next X-Men film -- EXCLUSIVE

We’re still weeks away from the unveiling of Fox’s ginormous X-Men: Days of Future Past (the cover of this week’s EW) but, fittingly, director Bryan Singer and producer/writer Simon Kinberg can only look ahead: The pair are developing, along with X2 writers Dan Harris and Michael Dougherty, the next X-Men film, Apocalypse, slated for May 27, 2016. Not much about the film is known, but Singer says that the film will be “somewhat” based on the 1990 comic storyline “Age of Apocalypse,” which features ancient villain Apocalypse and imagines an alternate universe. “[The movie] won’t necessarily create an alternate universe, but there may be some swapping things that I’m playing with,” admits Singer. Adds Kinberg, “From a visual standpoint it actually may be a bigger movie than Days of Future Past because there’ll be disaster movie imagery, like the title would imply.” READ FULL STORY

Casting Net: Chloe Moretz in talks for 'The 5th Wave'; Plus, Nina Dobrev, more

• Chloë Grace Moretz (Carrie) is in final talks to star in The 5th Wave, based on Rick Yancey’s sci-fi YA novel. In the story, 16-year-old Cassie is one of the last humans on earth after four devastating waves of alien attacks, and she’s determined to get her baby brother back. J. Blakeson (The Disappearance of Alice Creed) is set to direct. According to the report, it’s another potential franchise for Sony. Moretz is also starring in the adaptation of YA sensation If I Stay which hits theaters on Aug. 22.  [The Wrap]

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'X-Men': Could Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique get the next spin-off film?

20th Century Fox’s X-Men: Days of Future Past  doesn’t open until May 23, but that hasn’t stopped its producers from considering spin-off films (Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine is the only character so far to step out on his own), especially given the success that Marvel has had with The Avengers and its roster (Captain America, Thor, Iron Man). “There was a regime [at the studio] that didn’t see the worth in [spin-offs], and the current people who run Fox understand, embrace it, and we’re going to do right by it,” says producer Lauren Shuler Donner, who’s produced all of the X-Men films. “I’d like to do Gambit. I’d like to do Deadpool. We’ll see. There’s a lot of really great characters.” READ FULL STORY

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