Saturday, July 20, 2019

News Briefs

Displaying 1 - 10 of 3677
  • Saturday, Jul. 20, 2019
Brazil leader seeks greater control over cinema industry
In this May 29, 2019 handout photo provided by Agencia Brasil, Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro listens as Carla Zambelli whispers into his ear during a meeting at Congress, in Brasilia, Brazil. (Marcelo Camargo/Agencia Brasil via AP)
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- 

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he wants a "filter" on the country's audiovisual production, possibly limiting public funding to projects his administration deems fit.

Bolsonaro said Friday that without some sort of filter, he will consider shutting down the government-run National Cinema Agency. The agency oversees regulation and financing for Brazil's film and audiovisual industry.

The president commented a day after signing a decree moving another agency that determines governments policy on movies from the citizenship and culture ministry to his chief of staff's office. Critics say the move will increase government oversight on the body.

Bolsonaro said Thursday that Brazil should no longer use public funds for films that "disrespect families."

The president is a devout Christian and ran a right-wing campaign on a socially conservative agenda.

  • Friday, Jul. 19, 2019
"Titans" cast, crew heartbroken after crew member is killed
Poster art for "Titans"
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

The producers of the web series "Titans" say the cast and crew are heartbroken after a special effects coordinator was killed while preparing for a stunt.

In a statement, the show's executive producers say Warren Appleby was killed at a special effects facility while preparing for an upcoming shoot. No other details were disclosed.

Warner Bros. Television Group and DC Universe said in the statement that Appleby was a "treasured colleague" who was "beloved by all who worked with him during an impressive 25-year career in television."

Production for the series, which is based on the DC Comics' "Teen Titans," takes place in Toronto.

Appleby was special effects coordinator for Guillermo del Toro's "The Shape of Water," which won the best picture Oscar in 2018.

  • Friday, Jul. 19, 2019
Universal to release 2 new films in its "Halloween" saga
In this April 4, 2019 file photo, Jamie Lee Curtis, recipient of the CinemaCon vanguard award, poses at the Big Screen Achievement Awards at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

Universal says it will release two new "Halloween" films, including one with the ominous title "Halloween Ends."

The studio said Friday that the first of the films, "Halloween Kills," will be released in 2020 and the second film will come in 2021.

A teaser video includes the voice of Jamie Lee Curtis, who starred in the original 1978 film and last year's blockbuster sequel, "Halloween." The video states the saga of Curtis' character, Laurie Strode, and villain Michael Myers "isn't over."

Universal says "Halloween Kills" will be released on Oct. 16, 2020, and "Halloween Ends" will arrive Oct. 15, 2021.

Last year's film set records and earned $253.5 million worldwide.

Curtis is also serving as a producer on the films, which are being overseen by Blumhouse Productions.

  • Friday, Jul. 19, 2019
Russo brothers field questions from Avengers at Comic-Con
Joe Russo, left, and Anthony Russo participate in a conversation with the Russo Brothers on day two of Comic-Con International on Friday, July 19, 2019, in San Diego. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- 

"Avengers: Endgame" directors Joe and Anthony Russo are doing a victory lap at San Diego Comic-Con Friday.

The brothers reflected on their blockbuster being so close to matching "Avatar's" all-time box office record and even fielded questions from some unlikely fans.

"Avengers" stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo and Paul Rudd grilled their directors via video message on everything from who is the smartest Avenger to what Captain America did after completing his big task in "Endgame."

"By the way has, anyone not seen 'Endgame?'" Joe Russo asked, as the crowd of 8,000 laughed. "If not you should leave now."

It was a mostly tongue-in-cheek question. Not only is Comic-Con home base for some of Marvel's most enthusiastic fans, but there also aren't many moviegoers who didn't see "Avengers: Endgame" earlier this summer. The film has grossed $2.782 billion to date, just shy of "Avatar's" record of $2.788 billion.

"Give yourself a round of applause," Joe Russo said to the audience. "You made the Marvel Universe happen and we couldn't be more grateful."

The directors riffed about who needs the most takes on set (Anthony Mackie) and who gets it in "one shot" (Scarlett Johannsson), revealed that they had a monthslong conversation about the length of Captain Marvel's hair, and the most emotional day on the set of "Endgame" (Robert Downey Jr.'s last day).

For fans, the highlight of the panel was when a few of the Avengers appeared on screen to ask their directors some questions, even if they evaded answering most. Ruffalo wanted to know if the Hulk is now the smartest and strongest Avenger. Evans asked what the next thing Captain American does after he gets his dance with Peggy.

"Perhaps he and Peggy tried to make a baby?" Anthony Russo responded.

"I think he went to the bathroom," said Joe Ruso.

The Russos' have had a good run with Marvel, having directed four films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. They don't have any official future plans with the comic giant, but they did say they would love to direct an adaptation of the Marvel comic "Secret Wars."

The brothers--who are co-founders of commercial production/branded content house Bullitt--are already on to their next projects as producers. One reunites them with "Spider-Man" star Tom Holland on a movie about the opioid crisis set in their hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. Another will see Michael B. Jordan star in "The Thomas Crown Affair."

They also announced that they'll be producing adaptations of the cult comic "Grimjack" and "Battle of the Planets" with their AGBO production banner.

But the big Marvel news is yet to come at the annual fan convention. Saturday evening, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige will take the stage in Hall H where many expect him to announce plans for the next phase of Marvel films. Although details of what exactly will happen and who might appear at this point are being more closely guarded than one of the series' infinity stones.

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
Lin-Manuel Miranda geeks out on "His Dark Materials"
Lin-Manuel Miranda, left, and James McAvoy participate in the "His Dark Materials" panel on day one of Comic-Con International on Thursday, July 18, 2019, in San Diego. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- 

Lin-Manuel Miranda says he agreed to being in the adaptation of "His Dark Materials" before he even knew what part he was being offered.

Miranda plays Lee Scoresby, a cowboy who flies hot air balloons and gets into bar fights, although he says he would have sharpened pencils to be part of the production.

He and his fellow castmates James McAvoy and Ruth Wilson debuted a trailer for the HBO and BBC series based on the Philip Pullman novels Thursday evening at Comic-Con in San Diego.

The big-budget 2007 feature film "The Golden Compass" also attempted to adapt Pullman's material, but it was not well received by critics and disappointed at the box office.

"I thought it was time for the books to be liberated," said producer Jane Tranter, who convinced New Line and Pullman to let her adapt them into a series.

She helped recruit Miranda to the project while he was in London filming "Mary Poppins Returns" and he had a very personal reason for feeling so passionately about the material.

"When my wife and I stated dating we read these books together," Miranda said. "They're in a really special place in my heart."

The audience responded with a big "aw" to the story.

McAvoy, who plays Lord Asriel, was also a big fan of the material — so much so that he basically signed on in a single phone call from the casting director, who is a friend of his, just days before filming was set to begin.

Lyra actress Dafne Keen, on the other hand, didn't know the source material when she booked the role. At just 14, she told the audience that it was because the books came out before she was born. But she tore through the three books and became a fan before production started.

But Miranda was by far the giddiest of the cast, excitedly asking permission to reveal his first scene.

"I literally come into this thing singing a duet with my demon, on a big hot air balloon, which was a fun way to enter the world," Miranda said. "I can't believe we get to go back to summer camp this summer for season two."

HBO has yet to set a premiere date for the series.

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
Hamilton, Schwarzenegger tease "Terminator" sequel at Comic-Con
Arnold Schwarzenegger, left, and Linda Hamilton kiss at the "Terminator: Dark Fate" panel on day one of Comic-Con International on Thursday, July 18, 2019, in San Diego. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- 

Leave the kids at home, "Terminator: Dark Fate" is getting an R-rating.

Director Tim Miller told the audience at San Diego Comic-Con that it wasn't always going to be the plan, but the fans demanded it. The panel that kicked off the fan convention Thursday morning may also have gotten the same rating with the number of expletives thrown around by Miller.

Arnold Schwarzenegger even won $20 because Miller said one particular word more than 5 times.

"It was 10," Schwarzenegger said. "I counted."

Would you expect any less from the director of "Deadpool"?

Miller and Schwarzenegger were joined by Linda Hamilton, who is reprising her role as Sarah Connor, franchise newcomer Mackenzie Davis and other cast members on the Hall H stage.

This latest film fully ignores the events of the last Terminator movie, "Terminator: Genisys," with Emilia Clarke which bombed with audiences and critics in 2015. Instead "Dark Fate" picks up where James Cameron left off with "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" in 1991.

Producer David Ellison even told Miller that he didn't do Terminator as well as he'd wished the first time around with "Genisys" and wanted to try again.

Part of the strategy to "get it right" involved bringing Cameron back to produce.

Cameron chimed in via a live broadcast from the set of the "Avatar" sequels. He said he would have liked to have been in San Diego to kick off the 50th Comic-Con , but that he had to keep working.

"Everybody's always whining about how long it's taking 'Avatar' to get done," Cameron said.

His requirements for a new "Terminator" film started and stopped with wanting to make sure Schwarzenegger came back. It wasn't a problem, since Schwarzenegger himself said he's addicted to these films.

"'Terminator' was the movie that really launched my action movie career," Schwarzenegger said.

Then there was the Sarah Connor question. For Cameron and many fans, Hamilton is the one true Sarah. He sent her a "long rambling email with a lot of reasons why she should do it and a lot of reasons why she shouldn't."

The main point in the "pro column," Cameron said, is that people love her as this character.

"The character is the same but time changes everything," Hamilton said. "I felt there was a world of richness I could explore and then rock it as a woman of a certain age."

Although the 62-year-old actress is in full fighting shape in the footage and trailers, Hamilton said she didn't worry too much about getting back to her "T2" self.

"One day I woke up and realized I can no longer worry about being what I was because I am so much more than what I was," she said. "The richness of my life experience is only going to enrich the character I play."

But her 32-year-old co-star Davis still conceded that Hamilton would definitely win in a fight. Hamilton agreed.

"Mackenzie is stronger and younger, but I'm meaner," Hamilton said with a smile.

Edward Furlong is also returning to play John Connor again.

The audience greeted the action-packed footage with enthusiasm, which reached a crescendo when Sarah Connor debuted on screen.

"Terminator: Dark Fate" opens in theaters Nov. 1 and Comic-Con runs through Sunday.

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
Tom Cruise surprises Comic-Con with "Top Gun" sequel trailer
Tom Cruise presents a clip from "Top Gun: Maverick" on day one of Comic-Con International on Thursday, July 18, 2019, in San Diego. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- 

Tom Cruise has made an unexpected flyby at San Diego Comic-Con to debut the first trailer for "Top Gun: Maverick."

The audience in the 8,000 seat room went wild for Cruise Thursday afternoon. He closed out what had been billed only as a panel for "Terminator: Dark Fate."

Cruise says all the flying in the trailer is real and that "Top Gun: Maverick" is a love letter to aviation. They worked with the Navy for the film, which is currently in production.

"Top Gun: Maverick" is expected to hit theaters next June. Val Kilmer, Jon Hamm and Miles Teller co-star.

Cruise said Comic-Con was the perfect place to premiere the trailer. He shot the original some 34 years ago in San Diego.

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
Jerry Seinfeld learns from comedy's best on Netflix series
Jerry Seinfeld attends the "Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee," photo call at The Paley Center for Media, Wednesday, July 17, 2019, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP)
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) -- 

Jerry Seinfeld would rather cruise in classic cars and sip coffee with comedy's best than reboot his uber-successful "Seinfeld" television series.

"No, and do what? Make it worse?" Seinfeld said in an interview Wednesday night about his eponymous NBC sitcom, which celebrated its 30-year anniversary this month. "I'm very fortunate to be in the position to make that show with those people at that time. I wouldn't be arrogant enough to think I could do it again. That's egomaniacal. I'm happy with what I have now."

These days, Seinfeld is focused on learning more about the "sharpest minds in comedy" through his Netflix series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." The 11th season of the series premieres Friday on the streaming service featuring Eddie Murphy, who talked about his career and shared stories with Seinfeld about them coming up in comedy together in New York in the 1970s.

The new season also includes an array of other comedians including Martin Short, Rick Gervais, Seth Rogan, Bridget Everett, Barry Marder, Melissa Villaseño and Mario Joyner. Jamie Foxx appears in an episode to talk about him wanting to return to standup and his impersonation of Dave Chappelle.

"It's kind of a music video to me. It's just kind of visual. The words are interesting and sometimes it's funny, but I like it to have a rhythm and flow and then it's over," Seinfeld said. "It's just very quick. I always like when people go 'I wish that was a little longer.'"

Seinfeld launched "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee" on Sony's Crackle in 2012. The series was moved to Netflix two years ago after the comedian signed a massive deal with the streaming service.

This season, Seinfeld continues to pick up each guest in a different vintage car, from a Maserati Mistral to a Rolls-Royce convertible to a beat-up Dodge Monaco. He takes them to a cafe or restaurant for coffee where they have an easy-flowing conversation about their career and life experiences as comedians.

Seinfeld said he learns something new from each guest. He was surprised when Murphy spoke about not being as confident as most thought during his rise in comedy. He also didn't know that Rogen first heard about Bill Cosby's sexual misconduct history from Hannibal Buress in 2014, a month before Buress accused Cosby in a viral stand-up routine.

For Seinfeld, he feels somewhat like a news reporter in an effort to create a comfortable environment for guests to open up.

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
Deneuve, Hawke movie "The Truth" to open Venice Film Festival
This combination photo shows actors Catherine Deneuve (l) and Ethan Hawke who star in Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda’s film “The Truth.” The film will open the 76th Venice Film Festival on Aug. 28. (AP Photo)
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- 

The 76th Venice Film Festival is opening with Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda's "The Truth."

Festival director Alberto Barbera announced the selection starring Catherine Deneuve, Ethan Hawke and Juliette Binoche in a statement Thursday.

This is the first time in years that Venice has not started with a Hollywood film. Recent openers have included "First Man" and "La La Land."

"The Truth" features Deneuve as a French movie star who reunites with her daughter and son-in-law after publishing her memoirs. The director said the small family story takes place primarily inside a house.

The film will premiere on the Lido in competition on Aug. 28.

"The Truth" is the Palme d'Or-winning director's first film to be made outside of Japan. He directed last year's Oscar-nominated drama "Shoplifters."

  • Thursday, Jul. 18, 2019
"It: Chapter Two" cast talks intense shoot at Comic-Con
Casts of "It: Chapter Two" sit at a Comic-Con event Wednesday night, July 17, 2019 at the Spreckels Theater in San Diego, Calif. A theater of fans got a sneak peek at the latest promo for the horror sequel at the Comic-Con event before it's released to the world Thursday morning. They are, from left to right, Isaiah Mustafa, Andy Bean, James Ransone, Bill Hader, Conan O'Brien, Andy Muschietti, Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Jay Ryan. (AP Photo/Lindsey D. Bahr)
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- 

"It: Chapter Two" is not taking it easy on the grown losers' club if the new trailer is any indication, and the shoot itself doesn't sound much calmer than battling a demonic clown either.

A theater of fans got a sneak peek at the latest promo for the horror sequel at a Comic-Con event Wednesday night in San Diego before it's released to the world Thursday morning.

Cast including James McAvoy, Bill Hader and Jessica Chastain were also on hand to tease three chilling extended scenes that had the audience gasping, laughing and cheering. They described the intensity of the shoot with director Andy Muschietti, who wouldn't quit until he got the perfect shot.

Chastain recalled doing a scene with blood. She wasn't supposed to get any on her face, but she protested and said, "No, let's make it 'Carrie' on steroids." Later, "freezing and very uncomfortable" in a kiddie pool covered with the fake blood, she may have regretted her choice.

They laughed that throughout filming they used a "record" amount of fake blood — 4,500 gallons (17,035 liters), according to Chastain.

McAvoy also talked about filming a particularly hair-raising scene in a hall of mirrors that he said was "like a nightmare ... absolutely horrific. There was no fun in it."

And all marveled at Bill Skarsgård's ability to transform into Pennywise the clown.

"He's super imposing in the costume," Bill Hader said. "He's a super nice guy but then when they say 'Action,' it's like a whole other being."

McAvoy worried occasionally that Skarsgård was actually going to hurt himself in character. According to the cast, the "eye trick" Pennywise does where one eye is looking straight and the other goes off to the side is not computer-generated; it's just something Skarsgård is able to do.

"It's like he was born to play Pennywise," Hader said.

Conan O'Brien moderated the late night ScareDiego event put on by Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema and pleaded with the audience not to record any of the footage.

The film opens nationwide on Sept. 6.

Comic-Con's main events begin Thursday morning at the San Diego Convention Center.

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