Where many model-turned-actors found it necessary to spend years proving themselves capable of doing credible work, small town country boy Garrett Hedlund went from obscurity to legitimacy only weeks...
Angelina Jolie personally invited a host of local heroes to walk the red carpet with her and Brad Pitt at the premiere of her new World War II movie Unbroken in Sydney, Australia.
The Maleficent star asked the handpicked group of inspiring individuals to join her to watch the special screening of her latest directorial offering on Monday (17Nov14).
War hero Damien Thomlinson, burns survivor Turia Pitt and Pink Hope charity founder Krystal Barter were Jolie's guests at the glamorous event, along with Cambodian orphanage founder Geraldine Cox, Paralympian Jacqueline Freney and Fred Hollows Foundation creator. Many scenes in the film, which is based on the true story of athlete and prisoner-of-war survivor Louis Zamperini, were shot in Australian regions including New South Wales and Queensland.
"The song Heartstrings is really special to me... It's about hiding your feelings and smiling and pretending that you're happy when you're not... It's about just sort of tying your heartstrings off - not allowing yourself to be vulnerable... It used to be about some stupid break-up that I had when I was 25 or earlier. But it was stupid, and I was like, 'I have to write a song about this!'" Actress/singer Leighton Meester reveals she drew on her bitter experiences with an ex to pen the title song for her new album. The 28 year old, who is now married to actor Adam Brody, previously dated her Gossip Girl co-star Sebastian Stan for two years before splitting in 2010. She was also briefly linked to her Country Strong co-star Garrett Hedlund in early 2012.
"I’ve got a little bit more of a tummy now, so although I own about 20 pairs of jeans, I’ll wear the same three for a year because the rest are from when I was skinnier. I guess if I wasn’t comfortable and in a relationship I'd be thinner. When you’re with someone, you eat so much more and you chill out a bit."
Actress Kirsten Dunst's romance with actor Garrett Hedlund is taking her mind off weight issues.
Miramax via Everett Collection
The musical adaptation of Johnny Depp's hit Peter Pan film Finding Neverland is officially flying onto the Broadway stage. The production, based on the 2004 movie, in which Depp played Peter Pan creator J. M. Barrie opposite Kate Winslet, will debut at a Nederlander Organisation theatre in March 2015, according to the show's spokesperson. Finding Neverland centres on Barrie and the family which inspired him to write about the boy who never grew up. The musical, which is produced by Hollywood heavyweight Harvey Weinstein, opened at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts earlier this week (begs11Aug14) to positive reviews. Jeremy Jordan and Laura Michelle Kelly are currently starring in the Cambridge production, but it is not yet known if the pair will be part of the Broadway show. There's quite a resurgence of all things Pan at the moment - English director Joe Wright is adapting an origins story, featuring Hugh Jackman, Garrett Hedlund and Amanda Seyfried, for the big screen, and Girls star Allison Williams was recently cast as Peter Pan in a live TV version of the tale, which will debut in the U.S. at Christmas (Dec14). And of course, one of Hollywood's most beloved Peter Pans, Robin Williams, died earlier this week (11Aug14). He played Barrie's Pan in Steven Spielberg's Hook.
"I'm in baby mode because two of my really good friends are pregnant right now. One of them is pretty chilled and the other's like, 'I can't wait to have a glass of wine!' I love it though. We've already picked her girl's name, it's done! I think 33 is a good age to have your first baby." Actress Kirsten Dunst, 32, is sharing the stress of pregnancy with two of her best friends.
Police in Scotland have launched an investigation after the grave of Peter Pan creator J.M. Barrie was vandalised. Stones from the burial site in the writer's native Kirriemuir have been moved, and officers are now appealing for information from locals.
Town councillor Ronnie Proctor says, "It's a senseless act. It is an iconic place where many tourists come to visit. Something like this could have a (negative impact) on people from coming to visit. That in itself would have a detrimental impact on the town."
The memorial wall and grave is a major draw for fans of the author, who was born in the town in 1860 and buried there following his death in 1937.
The vandalism comes as filming is taking place on Pan, the latest adaptation of his most famous work. The film will star Hugh Jackman, Amanda Seyfried, Rooney Mara and Garrett Hedlund.
Barrie was played by Johnny Depp in 2004 movie Finding Neverland.
Occasionally, Lullaby is the story of one particular family struggling with the imminent death of its mensch of a patriarch (Richard Jenkins) following his long battle with cancer. But for some reason, the movie can't live with being only that. Lullaby wants to reach everybody, to cover all possible constructs of the grieving process, to deliver the ultimate cinematic depiction of untimely death. In stuffing itself with so many varied elements, however, Lullaby feels no longer like the story of any cohesive family, relegating itself to an array of moments that you'll probably recognize from past films about cancer (or contemporary ones, for that matter) and recall seeing handled a lot better in those movies, to boot.
When debut writer/director Andrew Levitas lets his characters run organically, he earns his best material: Jenkins plays dying dad Robert Lowenstein with terrific humanity, holding fast to his decision to emancipate himself from life support while catering to the emotional whims of his reserved wife (Anne Archer), defiant daughter (Jessica Brown Findlay), and black sheep son Jonathan (Garrett Hedlund), the focal character in the story. Jenkins is the film's power source, peppering his slow drift toward the inevitable with good natured snark and some bona fide dad jokes — there are a few dynamite puns in this picture, rest assured — and instances of authentic sentiment. Hedlund returns the favor as the prickly runaway who has never forgiven his dad for getting sick, but pales in comparison to the soft grins of his screen partner.
If left alone with the simple grandeur of the above, the Lowensteins might brave a storm worth watching. But Lullaby compulsively tosses in an abundance of contrivances in a counterintuitive effort to courier the emotional reach to all audiences (or maybe it's just out of desperation for script filler). At various points in the movie, we learn about conflicts involving family inheritance, the Lowensteins' Jewish heritage, a hostile nurse (Jennifer Hudson, giving a performance that at the very least toes the line of racism) who is apparently the sole staff member in a gigantic New York City hospital, and Jonathan's relationship with ex-girlfriend Emily (Amy Adams) — a character with absolutely no place in this story — each introduced more abjectly than the last, and none commanding any presence of import.
The problem with all of these elements isn't simply their existence, but the insincerity with which they are all handled. Late in the movie, a conversation about an otherwise unmentioned automobile demands the gravity of an established metaphor, just one of many scenes that doesn't earn the catharsis it seems bent on establishing. The biggest culprit here might be the material surrounding Jessica Barden's Meredith, a cancer-stricken 17-year-old who the movie utilizes as Jonathan's Jiminy Cricket figure (taking form as both sage otherworldly symbol, despite going out of her way to introduce herself as "human" when they first meet, and a victim prime for the saving). Though the most egregious example of the movie's reliance on go-to schmaltz, Meredith is hardly the lone problem.
As a result of its proclivity to pluck away at the harp strings at every turn, when Lullaby does shoot for that real, it comes off as bizarre and misplaced. These issues notwithstanding, the rougher, more guttural moments in the film are indeed its most shining examples of humanity. If Lullaby were satisfied keeping its Lowensteins confined to the close quarters of Robert's hospital bed — fighting, crying, laughing at nurses, talking about baseball, dealing with (literal) s**t, and making dad jokes — we'd have what we likely came for: a touching, difficult story about people dealing with a true problem. But instead, the film chooses to favor of the big over the real.
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Much to the dismay of Trekkers everywhere, Roberto Orci will be making his directorial debut with Star Trek 3. According to Variety, Orci, who wrote and produced the first two installments of the franchise with his business partner Alex Kurtzman, has been the frontrunner for some time now, although the names of the other directors being considered haven't been revealed. Orci's name has been in contention for the job since he and Kurtzman announced their split, so the news doesn't come as too much of a surprise. He's also been working on the script with J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, while J.J. Abrams will serve as producer.
Star Trek is just the latest franchise to take a chance on a new director, as studios have recently made it a habit of picking independent or first-timer directors to helm blockbusters like The Amazing Spider Man 2 or Godzilla. In fact, many of the most expensive films ever made were headed by directors making their feature film debut. Considering Star Trek Into Darkness had a budget of $185 million, it seems as if Orci will soon join the ranks of first-time directors taking on a big-budget franchise. In honor of the major challenge that Orci has ahead of him, we've rounded up the six most expensive directorial debuts and how those directors handled them. That way, Trekkies can try and manage their expectations.
Robert Stromberg, Maleficent - $180 millionWalt Disney Studios
Though fantasy fixtures like David Yates and Tim Burton were rumored to helm the Disney prequel, the studio instead handed the reins to Stromberg, an Oscar-winning production designer. We'll have to wait until the film's May 30 release in order to see how well he handled the material, but from the trailers it's clear that the director's previous experience has resulted in visually stunning movie.
Bob Peterson, Up - $175 millionWalt Disney Co. via Everett Collection
Before he took the helm for Up, Peterson was best known for providing voices for some of Pixar's most icoinc characters. However, his directorial debut blew his other projects away, earning five Academy Award nominations — including Best Picture, making it only the second animated film to be nominated in that category — a win for Best Animated Feature, and opening the Cannes Film Festival. Oh, and it grossed over $700 million at the box office.
Carl Erik Rinsch, 47 Ronin - $175 millionUniversal Pictures via Everett Collection
Loosely based on the fictional account of 47 samurai who avenged their master's death, the big budget film was entrusted to Rinsch by Universal, despite his lack of feature film experience. Unfortunately for the studio, it wasn't a gamble that paid off, as the film's release date was pushed back several times, it received largely negative reviews and it failed to break even at the box office. Hopefully Paramount won't find themselves in the same situation with Star Trek.
Rupert Sanders, Snow White and the Huntsman - $170 millionUniversal Pictures via Everett Collection
Prior to Snow White and the Hunstman, Sanders had primarily directed commercials, although that didn't stop Universal from trusting him with this fantasy epic. The resulting film did well at the box office even though it received mostly mixed reviews, and was rumored to be getting a sequel, with Sanders taking the helm once again. However, both films were overshadowed by the tabloid frenzy that resulted from Sanders' affair with his leading lady, Kristen Stewart, so it doesn't look like that will be happening any time soon.
Joseph Kosinski, Tron: Legacy - $170 million Walt Disney Studios via Everett Collection
When Disney decided to make a sequel to Tron almost thirty years after the first film was released, they turned to Kosinski, who had become known for his work with computer generated effects in the commercials he directed. Though Tron: Legacy received mixed reviews, choosing Kosinski turned out to be a smart choice in the long run, as the film grossed over $400 million during its run in theaters.
Rich Moore, Wreck-It Ralph - $165 million Walt Disney Studios via Everett Collection
Before taking on Wreck-It Ralph, Moore made his name directing episodes of The Simpsons and Futurama, which made him a perfect fit for the goofy, self-referential film. It was a major hit for Disney, grossing over $400 million at the box office, winning the Annie Award for Best Animated Feature and earning an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Picture. Unfortunately, it lost the award to Brave, because nobody loves a Pixar movie more than the Academy.
"We'd go swimming in the sea and there were a lot of cats in Greece and I love cats so I'd feed cats with my boyfriend (actor Garrett Hedlund) and stuff." Actress Kirsten Dunst made friends with local felines while shooting new movie The Two Faces Of January in Greece.
Actress Amanda Seyfried is to reteam with her Les Miserables castmate Hugh Jackman in director Joe Wright's upcoming Peter Pan prequel. The Mamma Mia! star will portray Mary in the live-action film, which features Jackman as pirate Blackbeard, Garrett Hedlund as Hook and Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily.
Newcomer Levi Miller has been cast as the young Peter Pan in the project, which starts shooting in Leavesden, England next week (28Apr14).
The film is set to hit cinemas in July, 2015.
Starred opposite Billy Bob Thornton in the football drama "Friday Night Lights"
Made professional acting debut, playing Patroclus in Wolfgang Petersen's "Troy"
Cast in "Eragon," a fantasy/adventure movie based on the novel of the same name
Co-starred with Jeff Bridges in "Tron: Legacy," the sequel to the 1982 sci-fi classic "Tron"
Played a rising young singer-songwriter opposite Gwyneth Paltrow in "Country Strong"
Starred in John Singleton's "Four Brothers," as one of four brothers out to avenge their mother's murder
Cast in the Garry Marshall directed dark comedy "Georgia Rule"
Modeled for L.L. Bean and Teen Magazine
Cast as free-spirited Dean Moriarty in feature adaptation of "On the Road" by Jack Kerouac
Acted opposite Kevin Bacon in the psychological thriller "Death Sentence"
Where many model-turned-actors found it necessary to spend years proving themselves capable of doing credible work, small town country boy Garrett Hedlund went from obscurity to legitimacy only weeks after he landed in Los Angeles in pursuit of his passion for acting. Almost instantly, Hedlund found himself on Hollywood's radar as Patroclus in Wolfgang Petersen's epic "Troy" (2004), as well as one of the lead football players in the sports drama, "Friday Night Lights" (2004). Noteworthy for his portrayal as Mark Wahlberg's younger brother in crime thriller "Four Brothers" (2005), and for his role in the dragon fantasy "Eragon" (2006), Hedlund also made the occasional box-office misstep by appearing in the critically panned Lindsay Lohan drama, "Georgia Rule" (2007). That same year, Hedlund moved away from his "farmboy-thrust-into-the- big-city" image with the gritty "Death Sentence" (2007) and most importantly, made a fanboy splash as the lead in the highly-anticipated sci-fi sequel, "Tron Legacy" (2010), garnering the greatest buzz in his career up until that time and virtually securing viable leading man status for years to come.