Max Payne

•August 19, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Max Payne is an upcoming action film based on the 2001 video game of the same name. The film is directed by John Moore and stars Mark Wahlberg in the titular role. The film is scheduled to be released on October 17, 2008.

Max Payne (Mark Wahlberg) is a cop whose family and partner are brutally murdered. He embarks on a maverick path, venturing into the underworld to find those responsible for the murders. Payne finds that he faces enemies from beyond the natural world and that he will be betrayed.maxpayne_teaserpos_gal

The 2001 video game Max Payne was optioned by the production company Collision Entertainment to produce a live-action film adaptation. By April 2002, distributors Dimension Films and Abandon Entertainment were attached to the project. Shawn Ryan, the creator of the television series The Shield, was hired to write a script for the planned film. By June 2005, without production starting, Collision Entertainment had taken the project to 20th Century Fox. In November 2007, with a script written by Beau Thorne, Fox announced John Moore as the director and Mark Wahlberg as the star in the titular role.

Filming began in Toronto on March 2, 2008 and wrapped by May 9, 2008. The film will be rated PG-13 in the United States, a departure from the M-rated video game series. Mila Kunis said of the tone-down, “It’s incredibly dark. You still get the gist of it. The only difference between R-rated and PG-13 is you might not see as much blood. You might not see blood squirting everywhere, but as far as the sadness and the darkness of it and the distraught [nature] of these human beings is very much captured in the film.”

Cast

  • Mark Wahlberg as Max Payne, a cop haunted by the murder of his family and who disregards rules to investigate their deaths. Wahlberg described his role, “It’s probably one of the edgier roles I’ve played but also the most layered. Here’s a very happy guy who worked a dismal job, had a beautiful family. But the beauty in his life was taken away. He just goes on a rampage. It’s all driven by emotion.”
  • Beau Bridges as B.B. Hensley, a former cop and Max Payne’s mentor.
  • Mila Kunis as Mona Sax, an assassin who seeks revenge for the murder of her sister.
  • Ludacris as Jim Bravura, an internal affairs agent.
  • Chris O’Donnell as Jason Colvin, an executive and Nicole Horne’s “right-hand man”.
  • Nelly Furtado as Christa Balder, wife of Alex Balder.
  • Kate Burton as Nicole Horne, CEO of Aesir corporation.
  • Donal Logue as Alex Balder, Max Payne’s partner and best friend.
  • Amaury Nolasco as Jack Lupino, a mafia boss who becomes insane due to the drug Valkyr.

Drillbit Taylor

•June 17, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Drillbit Taylor or known as Drillbit Taylor: Budget Bodyguard is a 2008 comedy film starring Owen Wilson as the title character and based on an original idea by John Hughes. Paramount Pictures released the film on March 21, 2008.

Two boys, chubby Ryan (Troy Gentile) and skinny Wade (Nate Hartley), are preparing for their first day of high school. Things start badly when the pair arrive at school wearing the same shirt, and get worse when Wade sticks up for a smaller fellow geek, Emmett, (David Dorfman) who is being shoved into a locker by bullies Filkins (Alex Frost) and Ronnie (Josh Peck). The sadistic (and Hannibal Lecter-like) Filkins makes it his mission to haze and humiliate the three at every chance. The trio complain to the principal (Stephen Root), but their concerns fall upon deaf ears. Filkins is furious that the boys have squealed on him, and the hazing gets worse. Wade suggests to his friends that they pool their money together to hire a bodyguard who can protect them. They place an ad on the Internet, and select Drillbit Taylor (Owen Wilson) out of several candidates, mainly because he is the cheapest. Taylor pretends to be a martial arts master and mercenary, but in reality he is just a homeless man who sleeps under a picnic table, showers on a public beach overlooking the highway, and eats out of a dumpster. His real intention of becoming their bodyguard is to rob them and get enough money to go to Canada and start living there. When he shows up in a “borrowed” suit at the boys’ school, he is taken by the school staff to be a substitute teacher, falls in love with a pretty teacher (Leslie Mann), and decides to actually start working as such. He starts really liking the boys and decides to try to really defend them, and teach them also to defend themselves. After Taylor’s criminal friends steal a lot from Wade’s house, Taylor fights them and returns everything to the house.
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Kung Fu Panda

•June 1, 2008 • 10 Comments

 

Kung Fu Panda is an animated film about a panda who learns martial arts and then uses this new ability to fight his enemies. Kung Fu Panda is being directed by John Stevenson and Mark Osborne and produced by Melissa Cobb. The idea for the film was conceived by Michael Lachance, a DreamWorks Animation executive. The film premiered at the 61st Cannes Film Festival. The film is due for US release on June 6 and UK release on 4 July 2008. It will be distributed by Paramount Pictures.

The film stars the voices of, among others, Jack Black, Seth Rogen, David Cross, Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie, Lucy Liu and Ian McShane.

This film has been rated PG by the MPAA for sequences of martial arts action. The film was also rated PG by the BBFC.

The movie opens up with the main character Po (Jack Black), a giant panda having a kung fu themed dream. The dream concludes with the outlines of the five masters bowing to him just as his father, a crane yells for him to come to work. Po falls down the several flights of stairs from his room to the kitchen of a noodle shop run by his father, who inherited it from his father, who won it from a pig in a game of rummy. It is then he hears that today is the day that the dragon warrior will be chosen to defeat the evil snow leopard. Po is commically and “accidentally” chosen by the grand master as the one who is to be the dragon warrior.

Cast

Actor Role Animal
Jack Black Po Giant Panda
Jackie Chan Master Monkey Monkey
Dustin Hoffman Shifu Red Panda
Angelina Jolie Master Tigress South China Tiger
Lucy Liu Master Viper Viper
Seth Rogen Master Mantis Praying Mantis
David Cross Master Crane Japanese Crane
Ian McShane Tai Lung Snow Leopard
Michael Clarke Duncan Commander Vachir Javan Rhinoceros
James Hong Mr. Ping Goose
Dan Fogler Zeng Palace Goose
Randall Duk Kim Oogway Tortoise

Two additional voices were provided by winners of a Nickelodeon competition

 

 

Wanted

•May 7, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Wanted is a 2008 film loosely based on the comic book miniseries Wanted by Mark Millar. The film is directed by Timur Bekmambetov and stars James McAvoy, Morgan Freeman, Konstantin Khabensky and Angelina Jolie. Production began in April 2007. Wanted has a target release date of June 27, 2008.

Production

The comic book miniseries Wanted by Mark Millar first attracted the attention of Universal Studios executive Jeff Kirschenbaum, a comic book fan who sought a film adaptation that would be considered a “hard-R” and encouraged the studio to pick up the rights to the miniseries. By 2004, producer Marc Platt set up development of the film adaptation. In December 2005, Russian director Timur Bekmambetov was attached to helm the project as his first English-language film, with the script being written by Derek Haas and Michael Brandt. Millar did not like the first draft of the script. He explained, “I wanted the film to basically be the opposite of the Spider-Man movie, the idea of someone getting powers and realizing they can do what they want, then choosing the dark path. The [script] I read was just too tame. It just seemed a little bit Americanized. But Timur came in with his Eastern European madness, and he really made it nasty. He went closer to the spirit of the book.”
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Street Kings

•April 8, 2008 • 2 Comments

Street Kings (originally titled The Night Watchman) is an upcoming 2008 film. The screenplay is written by notedauthors James Ellroy and John Ridley; the film is directed by David Ayer. The film stars Keanu Reeves, Hugh Laurie andForest Whitaker. The film is scheduled to be released in theaters on April 11, 2008.

In 2004, it was announced that Spike Lee would be directing the film for a 2005 release. In 2005, it was announced thatOliver Stone was in talks to direct the film. But Stone later denied this. Training Day writer David Ayer took over the project. So far Hugh Laurie, Chris Evans, Terry Crews, Common, Jay Mohr, The Game, Keanu Reeves, and Naomie Harris have been confirmed roles in the movie.
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Vantage Point

•April 2, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Vantage Point is a 2008 thriller film, written by Barry Levy and directed by Pete Travis. It stars Dennis Quaid, Matthew Fox, Forest Whitaker with Sigourney Weaver andWilliam Hurt. It was released on February 22, 2008. The film is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for sequences of intense violence and action, some disturbing images, and brief strong language. 

The film is set in Salamanca, Spain, but it was filmed in Mexico, even though some of the scenes were shot in that city. The United States President Henry Ashton (William Hurt) is holding an anti-terrorism summit in Salamanca. Over a twenty-three-minute period, an assassination attempt on the President unfolds. The film loops through this period over and over, each time from the perspective of a different participant, adding a new piece to the larger puzzle with each loop.

 

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Get Smart

•April 1, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Get Smart is an upcoming 2008 film adaptation of Mel Brooks and Buck Henry’s hit 1960s spy parody television show Get Smart. The film will star Steve Carell as Maxwell Smart and Anne Hathaway as Agent 99. Alan Arkin will play the Chief. Masi Oka, Terence Stamp, Dwayne Johnson and Dalip “The Great Khali” Singh will also star. Bill Murray and Patrick Warburton make cameos in the film, as does Bernie Kopell, who played Siegfried in the original series.

Shooting began February 2007, and was continuing as of June 2007. Some scenes were shot in Montreal, Quebec, Canada between June 11 and June 13, 2007 at 1507 Docteur-Penfield Avenue and at McGill University. It is rated PG-13 by the MPAA “for some crude humor, action violence and language.”

Cast

  • Steve Carell as Maxwell Smart/Agent 86
  • Anne Hathaway as Agent 99
  • Alan Arkin as The Chief
  • Dwayne Johnson as Agent 23
  • Terence Stamp as Siegfried
  • David Koechner as Agent Larabee
  • Terry Crews as Agent 91
  • Masi Oka as Bruce
  • Nate Torrence as Lloyd
  • Ken Davitian as Shtarker
  • Dalip Singh (The Great Khali) as Agent Rana
  • Bill Murray (cameo) as Agent 13
  • Patrick Warburton (cameo) as Hymie the Robot
  • Bernie Kopell (cameo)
  • James Caan as the President of the United States