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Box office preview: 'Fury' storms into theaters

Gone Girl may have had a cozy two weeks at the top of the box office, but there’s a new contender in town: Fury. Brad Pitt stars in the David Ayer-directed WWII pic that’s expected to march to the top spot by the weekend’s close, in spite of the crowded adult-targeted market.

The Guillermo del Toro-produced animated pic The Book of Life hits theaters this weekend, too, as does the weepy Nicolas Sparks adaptation The Best of Me. Jason Reitman’s Men, Women, and Children also expands nationwide after two uninspiring weeks in limited release.

Here’s how things might play out.

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John Cleese denies retirement reports

John Cleese says movie casting directors should not be put off from hiring him by recent reports that the Monty Python comedy legend is retiring from films.

“Sometimes you read these things and you say, ‘I don’t remember saying that,'” explains Cleese, 74, whose acting credits include fellow Python Terry Gilliam’s 1981 film Time Bandits, 1988’s Cleese-written A Fish Called Wanda, and two of the Harry Potter films. “What I would say is, when you get to my age, the number of parts that you get offered is very, very small. They’re not looking for 75-year-old comedians most of the time. I have been offered a large part in a movie which, if they get the finance together, will happen in the spring. But that doesn’t happen a lot. What I did say is that I don’t enjoy movies very much. Terry Gilliam, who has nothing better to do with his life, loves to have movies because it structures him and gives him a purpose, which otherwise he lacks. I don’t like the way that they take your life over.”

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Javier Bardem in talks to play the villain in fifth 'Pirates' film

With Johnny Depp and Geoffrey Rush both returning for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, the fifth film in the hit franchise, fans have turned their attention to which actor will play the film’s villain.

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Scare yourself silly with a clip from 'Housebound'

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How good is the low budget New Zealand horror film Housebound?

Well, Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson has hailed it as “Bloody brilliant!”—and the man knows what he’s talking about, having started his career with such minimally financed but fabulous splatterfests as 1987’s Bad Taste.

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First look: Vampire film 'A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night' gets a spinoff comic

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There are a couple of notable things to mention about the new film A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night: One, I’m pretty sure it’s cinema’s first-ever Farsi language, female vampire-featuring, romance-Western and two, I’m absolutely sure it is one of the most hotly anticipated horror movies of the year.

The film received a warm reception on its recent festival run and has received the imprimatur of noted horror fan Elijah Wood, who is one of the film’s executive producers and described the movie as “stunning” when EW spoke with the actor about it last year.

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Box office update: 'Dracula Untold' leads, 'Gone Girl' close No. 2

Amazing Amy has a new foe to reckon with this weekend. Universal and Legendary’s Dracula Untold (Cinema Score: A-) edged out Gone Girl for the No. 1 spot, Friday. Starring Luke Evans as the classic bloodsucker, Dracula Untold took in around $8.9 million, Friday (including Thursday showings), while David Fincher’s Gone Girl earned an estimated $8.15 million. It could be a tight race to No. 1, but tracking suggests that Gone Girl may end up the victor with $26 or $27 million this weekend and a $3 million lead over Dracula.

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Kate Beckinsale freaks out in this 'Stonehearst Asylum' clip

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Where would Halloween season be without Edgar Allan Poe? Still positioned in October, of course, but with a much less creepy hold on the month.

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'Labyrinth' sequel in the works? Not exactly

Fan sites went a little wild on Friday when they stumbled upon a bit of news that The Jim Henson Company was working on a sequel to Labyrinth, the bizarre, beloved 1986 fantasy starring Jennifer Connelly and David Bowie. But, sources tell EW that’s not the full truth. While they are working on a Fraggle Rock movie and a Dark Crystal sequel, as the Variety article stated, there are currently no plans to reboot, revive, or make a sequel to Labyrinth. It’s one of those legacy titles that is floated at most meetings, but, sadly, nothing is actually in development at the moment.

Let’s drown our sorrows in “Magic Dance.”

The Jim Henson Company had no comment.

 

See the first trailer for Chris Lowell's 'Beside Still Waters'

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Chris Lowell ran a somewhat unconventional ship for his directorial debut Beside Still Waters, a highly personal, contained tale about childhood friends reuniting at a lake house years later. The Veronica Mars star shot on film, raised most of his budget by basically pounding the pavement and began each day by taking a bare leap into the lake with his cast outside the house where they shot. “It’s unbelievably, terribly unprofessional,” he tells EW, laughing. “But it was a great start. It really got us in the zone.”

So far, Lowell has had an interesting 2014 with the quick ascent and subsequent cancellation of Fox’s brothers in arms comedy Enlisted, the release of the fan-funded Veronica Mars movie, and now, the theatrical and VOD roll-out of his film, which he finished shooting in 2012 and boasts its own set of crazy ups and downs including becoming one of Kickstarter’s most successful projects after nearly tripling his fundraising goal. “I’m so excited I can hardly stand it,” he says. “It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. I’ve climbed mountains, I’m running the New York City marathon this year, but this? It was the most difficult thing in the world physically and emotionally.”

Part of that stress was likely due to the fact that he opted to shoot on film, blending 16mm, Super 8, and his own photography. “That’s sort of my realm. It’s where I feel most comfortable. As a photographer I shoot everything on film and it’s almost all black and white,” he says. “Film brings with it a sense of nostalgia and beauty, but, from a producing standpoint it’s a packed with headache and complete unpredictable obstacles.”

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George Clooney brings impressive 'Tomorrowland' footage to NY Comic Con

While mum was the word at the Tomorrowland panel at New York Comic Con, a never-before-seen clip screened at the show shines a bit of light on Brad Bird and Damon Lindelof’s latest mystery box of a film.

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