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Auteur appreciator, and self-professed cinephile. In another life I would perhaps embrace my inner actress, but right now, I'm the Platform Manager at IndieReign - and it's awesome.

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Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters, directed by Tommy Wirkola (Dead Snow)  is set to come out to cinemas later this month.

In the old familiar children’s tale, innocent Hansel, Gretel, played by  fell victim to an evil child-eating witch who lived in a delicious gingerbread cottage…

Now brother and sister are back 15 years later as bounty hunters with a thirst for witch blood, on a mission to ensure no more children fall victim to wicked witches.

Starring:  Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker, The Avengers) as Hansel, Gemma Arterton (Prince of Persia: The Sand of Time, Quantum of Solace) and Peter Stormare (The Big Lebowski, Armageddon)

In this dark spin off you will find a broomstick flying, witch-ass kicking supernatural action film with guns, lots of guns.

Whether it meets expectations or will become a terrible disaster, we are yet to find out.

So the real question is, will you be tempted? Check out the clips for tiny taste of what’s to come.

Remember: Don’t. Eat. The. Candy.

Check out the trailer:

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A few years ago news surfaced that big time producers Hollywood were interested in turning Activision’s first person shooter game, Call of Duty, into a movie.

News has just surfaced, however, that this will not be happening.

Activism’s CEO, Bobby Kotick, was recently profiled by the New York Times, who wrote “Call of Duty may look like a movie, but Mr. Kotick has little interest in turning it into one — and has turned down several studios’ requests. He says movies based on video games rarely please devoted fans and could taint the brand.”

The most recent Call of Duty grossed $1 billion in just 15 days, and before that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, reached the same in 16 days. Compared to Avatar, the highest grossing film in all history and the first to cross the $2 billion line that only reached the $1 billion mark after 19 days, one does wonder about the pain versus the gain for the decision not to turn this game into cinema.

 

Short fan-made movies have previously emerged from the Call of Duty games, the first being ‘Call of Duty: Find Mackarov‘, an independent non-canon film which was well received by fans and even Activism themselves, who then helped digital agency We Can Pretend and visual effects company The Junction produce a second short film; ‘Find Makarov: Operation Kingfish‘, but I think that’s as close as we’re going to get as far as a COD movie goes.

With a flood of comic book movies coming out, we can see the ‘geek cinema’ genre being modified as it grows. There has not been huge success in the conversion from video games into film, but could this trend be set to change? We certainly have seen a lot more big time video console games turned into cinema with the likes of Resident Evil and Silent Hill etc, though… were those films actually good?

Watch Find Mackarov: Operation Kingfish here:

Sources: NYTimes, Joystiq, EW, Dark Horizons,

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Emma Stone and Seth MacFarlane present nominations

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has just released the Oscar nominations for 2013! Lincoln and Life of Pi have come out on top with Lincoln holding a total of 12 nominations followed Life of Pi at a close second with 11.

Les Miserables and Silver Linings Playbook have also done well, both films receiving a total of eight nominations. Argo pulled a tidy seven while Django Unchained, Skyfall, and Zero Dark Thirty all collected five.

This year will be the 85th Annual Academy awards, and will be presented by actress Emma Stone, and writer Seth MacFarlane. MacFarlane will not only be presenting, but he is also up for the title of Best Original Song for writing the lyrics of “Everybody Needs A Best Friend” from Ted. This is the first year since 1972 that a host has been featured in the awards.

IndieReign are thrilled to see independent film (and favorite) Beasts of the Southern Wild, directed by Benh Zeitlin, draw a total of four nominations. Starring actress Quvenzhané Wallis, aged 9, (as Hushpuppy) has been nominated for the title ‘Best Actress’, and is the youngest actress ever to receive a nomination! Funnily enough, Wallis will go up against the oldest ‘Best Actress’ nominee ever, Emmanuelle Riva, aged 85, who starred in Amour.

Films that did not gain any nominations include; The Dark Knight Rises, Holy Motors, Looper, and Cloud Atlas, this has been met with surprise from many fans, as well as the fact that Kathryn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty), Ben Affleck (Argo), Paul Thomas Anderson, (The Master) and Quentin Tarantino (Django Unchained) failed to secure any director’s nominations.

The awards will take place on Sunday, February 24th, 2013.

See below for the full list of nominations (from Dark Horizons)

Best Picture
“Amour”
“Argo”
“Beasts of the Southern Wild”
“Django Unchained”
“Les Miserables”
“Life of Pi”
“Lincoln”
“Silver Linings Playbook”
“Zero Dark Thirty”

Best Actor
Bradley Cooper for “Silver Linings Playbook”
Daniel Day-Lewis for “Lincoln”
Hugh Jackman for “Les Miserables”
Joaquin Phoenix for “The Master”
Denzel Washington for “Flight”

Best Actress
Jessica Chastain for “Zero Dark Thirty”
Jennifer Lawrence for “Silver Linings Playbook”
Emmanuelle Riva for “Amour”
Quvenzhane Wallis for “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Naomi Watts for “The Impossible”

Directing
Michael Haneke for “Amour”
Benh Zeitlin for “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Ang Lee for “Life of Pi”
Steven Spielberg for “Lincoln”
David O. Russell for “Silver Linings Playbook”

Best Supporting Actor
Alan Arkin for “Argo”
Robert De Niro for “Silver Linings Playbook”
Philip Seymour Hoffman for “The Master”
Tommy Lee Jones for “Lincoln”
Christoph Waltz for “Django Unchained”

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams for “The Master”
Sally Field for “Lincoln”
Anne Hathaway for “Les Miserables”
Helen Hunt for “The Sessions”
Jacki Weaver for “Silver Linings Playbook”

Best Foreign Language Film
“Amour” – Austria
“Kon-Tiki” – Norway
“No” – Chile
“A Royal Affair” – Denmark
“War Witch” – Canada

Best Animated Feature Film
“Brave”
“Frankenweenie”
“Paranorman”
“The Pirates! Band of Misfits”
“Wreck-It Ralph”

Best Adapted Screenplay
“Argo” by Chris Terrio
“Beasts of the Southern Wild” by Lucy Alibar & Benh Zeitlin
“Life of Pi” by David Magee
“Lincoln” by Tony Kushner
“Silver Linings Playbook” by David O. Russell

Best Original Screenplay
“Amour” by Michael Haneke
“Django Unchained” by Quentin Tarantino
“Flight” by John Gatins
“Moonrise Kingdom” by Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola
“Zero Dark Thirty” by Mark Boal

Cinematography
Seamus McGarvey for “Anna Karenina”
Robert Richardson for “Django Unchained”
Claudio Miranda for “Life of Pi”
Janusz Kaminski for “Lincoln”
Roger Deakins for “Skyfall”

Best Costume Design
“Anna Karenina”
“Les Miserables”
“Lincoln”
“Mirror Mirror”
“Snow White and the Huntsman”

Best Feature Documentary
“5 Broken Cameras”
“The Gatekeepers”
“How to Survive a Plague”
“The Invisible War”
“Searching for Sugar Man”

Best Short Documentary
“Inocente”
“Kings Point”
“Mondays at Racine”
“Open Heart”
“Redemption”

Best Film Editing
“Argo”
“Life of Pi”
“Lincoln”
“Silver Linings Playbook”
“Zero Dark Thirty”

Best Make Up
“Hitchcock”
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
“Les Miserables”

Music (Score)
Dario Marianelli for “Anna Karenina”
Alexandre Desplat for “Argo”
Mychael Danna for “Life of Pi”
John Williams for “Lincoln”
Thomas Newman for “Skyfall”

Music (Song)
‘Before My Time’ from “Chasing Ice”
‘Everybody Needs A Best Friend’ from “Ted”
‘Pi’s Lullaby’ from “Life of Pi”
‘Skyfall’ from “Skyfall”
‘Suddenly’ from “Les Miserables”

Best Production Design
“Anna Karenina”
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
“Les Miserables”
“Life of Pi”
“Lincoln”

Best Short Animation
“Adam and Dog”
“Fresh Guacamole”
“Head Over Heels”
“Maggie Simpson in ‘The Longest Daycare’”
“Paperman”

Best Short Film (Live Action)
“Asad”
“Buzkashi Boys”
“Curfew”
“Death of a Shadow”
“Henry”

Best Sound Editing
“Argo”
“Django Unchained”
“Life of Pi”
“Skyfall”
“Zero Dark Thirty”

Best Sound Mixing
“Argo”
“Les Miserables”
“Life of Pi”
“Lincoln”
“Skyfall”

Best Visual Effects
“The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
“Life of Pi”
“Marvel’s The Avengers”
“Prometheus”
“Snow White and the Huntsman”

 

Sources: IMBD, Entertainment Weekly, Rotten Tomatoes

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Ginger and Rosa, written and directed by Sally Potter, gives us a realistic yet challenging glimpse into the lives of two teenage-girls, both 16, living in London during the time of the cold war.

Ginger and Rosa are inseparable friends in the (not yet swinging 60′s) who do everything together, however the cold war and dark plot twists see the girls growing separate ways as Ginger marches for peace to ban nuclear bombs, while Rosa becomes more interested in men, in particular, Ginger’s father…

Elle Fanning as Ginger, and Alice Englert as Rosa with a wonderfully put together cast including Annette Bening (American Beauty, The Kids Are All Right, The Siege), Christina Hendricks (Mad Men, Drive, Detachment), Timothy Spall (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Enchanted) and Oliver Platt (2012, X Men: First Class, Love and Other Drugs) put on a fine show in this elegant yet cruelly real tale of the girls’ coming of age.

Potter beautifully captures a vivid sense of the young innocence of the teens’ and their raw emotions which leaves a poetic and philosophical feeling with the viewer.

There have been a few mixed reviews about Ginger and Rosa, but we’ll leave it for you to check out the trailer and form your own opinions:

 

According to IMBD, Ginger and Rosa will be released in the US on March 15th, 2013.

Sources:

IMBD

Timeout

Contact Music

 

 

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David R. Ellis was found dead on Monday in his hotel room in Johannesburg, South Africa. He was in pre-production with Samuel L Jackson on the upcoming live-action film Kite a re-make of a 1998 Japanese anime film.

The body of 60 year old Ellis was found on the bathroom floor of the room he was staying in. Police say “nothing was found to be missing from his room and no foul play is being suspected at this stage. The US Embassy has been informed and are believed to be making necessary arrangements for the body to be taken to his own country.”

He had last been seen on Saturday night, after going out for dinner with a friend.

Ellis was well known for his latest work, directing films including Snakes on a Plane, The Final Destination (1 and 2), and Asylum. However he has had much more to contribute to the industry than most people are aware of.

His career began in 1974 as a child actor in Disney films and played The Strongest Man in the World, Heroes, Rocky III and The Bounty Hunter. He also holds many titles for stunts, and began stunt coordinating in 1990 when he made things blow up, catch fire, and fly through the air in many movies you’ve probably seen, such as: Warlock, impulse, the Adams Family, Made in America, The Jungle Book, and Hotel for Dogs.

Ellis’s impact on the film industry for both independent and blockbuster/mainstream movies will not go unnoticed, we are very sorry to hear of his passing.

 

Sources:

IMBD

The Sun

MTV

 

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Jack Reynor, 22, has been named as a new male lead for the Transformers 4 – yet to have a title.

Director, Michael Bay, announced the news on his website saying “this kid is the real deal”.

Reynor captured Bay’s eye after starring in the 2012 Irish indie drama, What Richard Did, directed by Lenny Abrahamson.

Irish based Reynor made the journey to America with just $30 in his pocket which prompted Bay’s response “Pretty ballsy. Seriously who does that?”

Although Reynor has starred in the well received What Richard Did, and has been involved in a few films such as Dollhouse and Stella, Transformers 4 will be his first ‘big time’ moment.

The female lead is yet to be cast, though Reynor will have his work cut out for him as he will be playing the boyfriend of Mark Wahlberg’s (Entourage, Ted, Contraband) on screen daughter. After seeing Wahlberg on yesterday’s trailer, Pain and Gain, I wouldn’t feel too confident as a man fighting for his daughter’s heart…

Despite the rumors floating around online about Transformers 4th film being a “reboot”, Bay assures his audience otherwise. “This movie takes place exactly 4 years after the war in Chicago [Dark of the Moon]” Bay writes, “the story makes a very natural transition, and reason as to why we have a whole new cast. This ‘Transformers’ will feel very different then the last three. We are embarking on a new trilogy.”

 

Sources:

michaelbay.com

MTV

Dark Horizons

 

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Pain and Gain, directed by Michael Bay (Pearl Harbor, Armageddon, Transformers), is an upcoming action film that follows a gang of bodybuilders in Florida and their dodgy get-rich-quick scheme that goes “horribly wrong”.

Daniel Lugo, played by Mark Wahlberg, gym worker, is sick of living the poor life, so he convinces fellow co-worker Adrian Doorbal (Anthony MacKie) and recently released gym-going crook Paul Doyle (Dwayne Johnson) to work with him on his mission.

The trio’s plan includes kidnapping Victor Kershaw, (Tony Shalhoub) a rich business man, and ‘persuading’ him to sign over his finances…

The film is  based on a true story, originally written by Pete Collins, an investigave journalist, on “a couple of Florida steroid-abusing knucklehead bodybuilders [the 1990's] who become criminals involved in an extortion ring and a kidnapping plot that goes horribly wrong.”

When I first read the short synopsis on IMBD, I must admit a small giggle escaped, though that could be the point. Michael Bay may well be taking the mickey, but the trailer portrays a good few hours of entertainment, if only for the hilarious one liners and a guest appearance from Rebel Wilson.

Have a look at this trailer and see what you think…

“I’ve watched a lot of movies, Paul, I know what I’m doing.”

Pain and Gain is scheduled for release in April 2013.

 

Sources: IMBD

Slash Film

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Frank Darabont, director of The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, and Mist, as well as creator of The Walking Dead, has just come on board with the Legendary Pictures’ rewrite of Godzilla.

Darabont was hired to complete a final rewrite of the script previously worked on by Max Borenstein, (The Seventh Son) David S. Goyer (The Dark Knight Rises), and Drew Pearce (Iron Man 3).

Production of the film is due to start in March 2013, with a release looking to be on May 16th, 2014, with Gareth Edwards as the director.

 

What the film has gained in writers however, it has lost double in producers. The pair Dan Lin (producer of Sherlock Holmes and Gangster Squad) and Roy Lee (producer of Shutter, and Quarantine), both well known for their previous work, came to Legendary Pictures with the project as producers after they secured the rights from Toho (a large Japanese independent film studio).

Warner Brothers insiders say Legendary wanted the producers to reduce their fees but when the duo declined a battle over creative and financial differences was ignited.

Lin and Lee left the project this week. Although this won’t affect anything creative in the film, it will leave plenty of financial fighting for those involved.

 

Sources:

DarkHorizons
Hitflix
Hollywood Reporter

 

 

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Ever thought that creating a feature length film would be a lot of work? Try animating one completely by hand… this is what Bill Plympton, New York based animator at Plymptoons is in the process of achieving.

Plympton describes his newest creation Cheatin’, as an “adult tale of love, jealousy, revenge, and murder – full of nudity and violence, but also with my surreal sense of humor”.

The animations have been done in his unique hand-painted style with the use of sketching and painting with watercolors. There are over 40,000 drawings still to be colored, and Plympton is looking for his fans help through Kickstarter to raise the remaining necessary funds.

Plympton, was also the creator of Oscar nominated short films, Your Face and Push Comes to Shove, and has been described as the “King of Indie Animation”. Cheatin’ will be his 7th animated feature.

“I am an artist and take great pride in my status as an independent filmmaker,” Plympton says. He draws every frame himself, and has a small team of 10 who help him digitally clean, print, and compose the over 40,000 animation drawings.

So far he has raised $62,000 USD but has just 23 days to get the remaining $13,000. Will he achieve this goal? We really hope so!

 

If you are interested in the project, or would like to support the film you can find all the details through this link. What do you get out of it? $1 will give you the satisfaction of knowing you’re contributing to something amazing, though the more you give, the better the rewards! Fancy an original animation or a caricature of yourself drawn by Bill Plympton? Or maybe you want to be credited as an Associate Producer? Do check it out!

 

Sources: AICN
Kickstarter

 

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