While many know Clark Gregg for his work as the most beloved tertiary character in a multi-billion-dollar mega-movie-franchise, not everyone may be aware that the actor who played Agent Coulson in the Marvel films also has a knack for writing and directing. Having made his debut behind the camera with 2008′s Choke, an adaptation of the sex-fueled Chuck Palahniuk novel, Gregg premiered his latest feature, Trust Me, at the Tribeca Film Festival on Saturday. In it, he plays Howard, a lowly Hollywood agent who specializes in representing child stars. A number of recognizable names like Amanda Peet, Felicity Huffman, Allison Janney, and Sam Rockwell round out the cast. We spoke with Gregg about taking a seat behind the camera, as well as how he feels about returning to TV as Agent Coulson in Joss Whedon’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. READ FULL STORY
Tag: The Avengers (11-20 of 115)
China's growing importance to Hollywood: Tom Cruise, Joss Whedon, and other industry heavyweights weigh in
The next time the Avengers assemble on the big screen, don’t be surprised if you see them touch down at some point in China. Given the rapid, almost Hulk-like growth of the film market in that country over the past few years, Avengers director Joss Whedon is half-expecting to get a call any day now asking whether he can set part of the superhero sequel in a Chinese locale. “I’m working on the script right now, and if someone came to me and said, ‘We’re looking into doing a chunk of this in China’—well, I’d have to think about it,” Whedon says. “China is on my radar. It can’t not be at this point.”
As North American movie theater owners gather in Las Vegas this week for their annual convention, CinemaCon, the state of the domestic movie business isn’t looking so rosy, with this year’s box office revenue running 12 per cent behind 2012 and 3-D ticket sales continuing to slide. But pan across the globe to China, and the picture couldn’t be more different. If America’s long love affair with movies seems to have cooled somewhat lately, China is in the first blush of a passionate new romance. How passionate? Put it this way: When James Cameron’s sci-fi epic Avatar opened in December 2009, there were only 13 IMAX screens in all of China. Today, there are 110, with some 140 more scheduled to open in the near future. “When I go to China, people will ask me for my autograph,” IMAX CEO Richard Gelfond says, adding drily, “That typically doesn’t happen in other places.”
With box office revenues rising 30% last year to $2.7 billion, China has now edged out Japan to become the second-largest film market in the world following the U.S. New movie screens are sprouting up across the country at a rate of roughly 10 per day, and some project that China could surpass the U.S. as the world’s top film territory within five years. It’s no surprise that Hollywood is eager to capitalize on that torrid growth as much as it possibly can. “China is on most producers’ minds all the time now,” says Barry Levine, producer of the sci-fi film Oblivion, which opens Friday. “It is a giant market if you can reach it. But you have to play it smartly.” READ FULL STORY
One day after current Hulk alter ego Mark Ruffalo tweeted that there were no plans for a standalone Hulk movie — only to further confuse matters by explaining that there could be a standalone Hulk movie, someday, because really anything can happen and also giant corporations love making money — Avengers director and Marvel Movie steersman Joss Whedon took the time to weigh in on the ambient possibility of a Hulk movie. The writer-director tells IGN that the rumors of an extended multi-movie Planet Hulk storyline are, in a word, “Nonsense.” See his snappy response in this video below: READ FULL STORY
The last decade saw two separate attempts to transform the Hulk into a big-screen movie star. First came Ang Lee’s splitscreeny Hulk; then came Louis Leterrier’s Norton-y The Incredible Hulk. Neither film really connected with moviegoers. But Mark Ruffalo put a distinctive spin on the character in last year’s Avengers, giving troubled scientist Bruce Banner a wry sense of humor. (He also got the best line in the movie.) It seemed like an easy bet that Marvel would spin-off the Ruffalized Hulk into his own solo movie. But the big green rage monster has so far been absent from Marvel’s Phase Two movie series. Yesterday, Ruffalo himself took to Twitter to speak about the status of a Hulk-centric movie: READ FULL STORY
Peter Jackson’s first Hobbit movie may not have gotten much love from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, but the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror Films saw things differently, lavishing the fantasy epic with nine Saturn Award nominations today. The awards, now in their 39th year, honor the best genre films, TV shows, and home entertainment. They’ll be presented in June, though the ceremony’s exact date and location have yet to be announced.
Here’s a partial rundown of this year’s Saturn nominees, including the movies honored in its new independent film category. Visit the awards show’s website for a full list.
Best Science Fiction Film
Marvel’s The Avengers
The Hunger Games
Best Fantasy Film
The Amazing Spider-Man
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Life of Pi
Snow White and the Huntsman
There’s no arguing who won the 2012 box-office: The Avengers smashed the competition, making $623.4 million. The Dark Knight Rises, The Hunger Games, Skyfall, and Breaking Dawn Part 2 also recorded blockbuster grosses, and the executives responsible for these hits can pat themselves on the backs for delivering the goods, which in these cases did not come cheap. The top 10 movies on last year’s box-office list cost, on average, more than $175 million each to produce — and that’s before a dime was spent on the marketing of a film and all the other fine-print considerations that eat into the profits.
But there’s more than one way to judge a film’s success, and while every producer might prefer to be in The Avengers‘ position, other, more modest films can claim victory as well. Back in 2005, EW devised a Popularity Index, which measured a film’s staying power in theaters; we’ve tweaked it only slightly this year to recognize the increasing number of platform releases. To get the index, we simply divided a movie’s total domestic gross by its biggest weekend tally – normally its opening frame, but not always.
The result is 10 movies that didn’t have record-breaking opening weekends, but they had legs. Many of them started slowly and gained steam as awards season heated up. Others were initially seen as disappointments, but then they just refused to go away, playing week after week to decent crowds. Most all of them had that rumored-to-be-extinct Hollywood creature: The Movie Star. Beancounters might prefer to be on that other box-office list, but the Popularity Index captures elements of quality that studios shouldn’t overlook.
Click below for the 2012 Popularity Index Top 10. READ FULL STORY
Does this mean onstage shawarma?
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today that Avengers stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner, and Mark Ruffalo will present together at this year’s Oscars ceremony Feb. 24. The group has garnered six Academy Award nominations cumulatively; only Captain America Evans has yet to earn a nod. Fellow Avengers Scarlett Johansson and Chris Hemsworth will apparently be absent from this cast reunion; perhaps coincidentally, they’ve also never been nominated for Oscars (though Johansson has earned four Golden Globe nods).
Marvel’s The Avengers was by far the top grossing movie of 2012, setting a record with its $207.4 million opening weekend and earning $623 million domestically in total. The movie’s cast joins a slate of Oscar presenters that already includes last year’s acting winners, Mark Wahlberg, and host Seth MacFarlane’s CGI creation Ted.
Meryl Streep, Jean Dujardin, Octavia Spencer and Christopher Plummer to present at the Oscars
Mark Wahlberg and CGI costar Ted to present at the Oscars
Seth MacFarlane serves up a martini for James Bond in Oscars promo
When Robert Downey Jr. brings Tony Stark back to the screen on May 3 in Iron Man 3, he’ll be wearing a new upgrade of his weaponized wardrobe, this one with a brassy, reduced-red color scheme that could be viewed as color commentary. These are, after all, golden days to be Downey, the movie star who is ranked No. 1 in the latest Forbes listing of Hollywood box-office heroes. The 47-year-old actor was once the film industry’s most talented and frustrating question mark, but now he’s Hollywood’s human exclamation point, and as the rakish Stark, the world’s favorite canned ham.
EW caught with the two-time Oscar nominee by phone not long ago for a lengthy conversation about the new film, his career, and Marvel Universe after the success of The Avengers.
We’ll run installments from the interview all week. In this first part, he talks about new additions to the franchise (led by writer-director Shane Black, the Lethal Weapon screenwriter whose hiring was championed by Downey) as well as familiar faces (such as Don Cheadle, who returns as Stark’s military pal Rhodey, who will be using some warfare wardrobe of his own). READ FULL STORY
Any kid can tell you that one of the great pleasures of any toy is unpacking that sealed box for the first time and putting all the parts and stickers together.
Visual effects house Industrial Light & Magic has given EW’s CapeTown a video that might give fans of The Avengers that same feeling.
The collection of behind-the-scenes clips reveals everything from the simulated Mark Ruffalo they created to morph into The Hulk, to the fact that most of New York in the movie was a digitally painted backdrop.
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