Hollywood studios are planning to create their own Comic-Con style event in London. The unnamed British film festival has the support of Paramount Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox, Marvel Studios, Warner Bros. Pictures, Universal Pictures, Walt Disney Pictures, and more. Cowboys and Aliens, which stars British actor Daniel Craig, will kick off the August festival. Fright Night, with Irish Colin Farrell and Scottish David Tennant, will close it.
UK cinefiles attending the festival will have the chance to see Q+A sessions with directors, pick up swag, and watch sneak peeks of upcoming films like Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. The festival will also include screenings of upcoming films The Change-Up, Conan The Barbarian 3D, and The Help (which doesn’t strike me as a particularly Comic-Con-appropriate pick, but maybe the Brits have mainstream flick-lit cosplayers or something.) Comic book writer Mark Millar, creator of Kick-Ass, is confirmed as a guest, as well as Real Steel director Shawn Levy.
It seems like the festival will really highlight the unsung heroes of Hollywood, the Brits. Without British people, who would we get to play our sneering villains, our southern vampires, our cowboys? I think it’s about time that Hollywood gave something back to the UK, even if it is in the form of disposable Con swag.
Sources: THR, Wharf.co.uk
The Tourist is about as difficult to get through as spotting the vowels in the name of its director. Florian Henckel von Donnersmark was last seen receiving a Best Foreign Film Oscar in 2007 for The Lives of Others which was about a couple living in East Berlin who were being monitored by the police of the German Democratic Republic. Its positive reception made way for the assumption that Donnersmark would continue to populate the USA with films of seemingly otherworldly and underrepresented themes. But his current project is saddening in its superficiality and total implausibility.
The film’s only real upside is its stars: two of our most prized Americans. Johnny Depp plays Frank Tupelo a math teacher from Wisconsin who travels to Europe after his wife leaves him presumably because of his weakness and simplicity. While en route to Venice he meets Elise Clifton-Ward (Angelina Jolie) who situates herself in his company after she receives a letter from her criminal lover Alexander Pearce (who stole some billions from a very wealthy Russian and the British government) with instructions to find someone on a train who looks like him and make the police believe that he is the real Alexander Pearce to throw the authorities and the Russians off his track. Elise picks Frank and after they are photographed kissing each other on the balcony of Elise’s hotel everyone begins to believe Frank is the real Pearce and so begins the chase.
While Donnersmark could not have picked two better looking people to film roaming around Venice his lack of faith in the audience is obvious. Every aspect of the characters is hammed up again and again as if Donnersmark felt burdened with the task of making us see his vision. Doubtful that we’re capable of getting to where he wants us he has crafted a movie completely devoid of subtlety. Elise’s strength and superiority over Frank are portrayed by close-ups and repeated instances of men burping up their lungs upon seeing her (as if her beauty is in any way subjective?). And in case we forgot that Frank is the victim in this story -- even though he’s been tricked chased and shot at - Donnersmark still felt the need to pin him with a lame electronic cigarette to puff on. Frank and Elise somehow manage to lack mystery even though we get very few factual details about each of them.
Nothing extraordinary comes to us in the way of the film’s structural elements either. There is very little of the action that The Tourist’s marketing led us to believe and the dialog is often painful. The plot itself is almost shockingly unbelievable especially when we’re asked to believe that Elise falls in love with Frank after a combination of kissing him once and her disclosed habit of swooning over men she only spent an hour with (yes that was on her CV).
The Tourist is rather empty and cosmetic. It’s worth seeing if you’re a superfan of Jolie or Depp but don’t expect to walk out of the theater with anything more than the stub you came in with.
The hairstylist was arrested on suspicion of a serious sexual assault in September (10) after an unnamed catwalk model, 24, claimed she was attacked at a hotel in the U.K. capital.
New York-based Mount was not charged and was released on bail pending further inquiries - but the investigation has since been dropped.
He tells New York Post gossip column Page Six, "I am so relieved that this is over. I have always maintained my innocence."
And Chanel model Heidi says she is standing by her man, adding: "We are still together. Nothing about these false accusations has changed our relationship."
A Scotland Yard spokeswoman confirmed to WENN that Mount is no longer under investigation.
Stars from across the globe flew in to the British capital to watch the world's top models strut down the runway during the event, which ran from 17-21 September (10).
But the style celebration has been rocked after one of the models, who remains nameless, alleged she was sexually assaulted at a hotel after a day on the catwalk, according to the New York Post.
New York-based hairdresser Shawn Mount, 30, who is married to Chanel model Heidi Mount, was arrested on suspicion of rape.
He was bailed to return to a London police station in November (10). No charges have been filed.
A spokesperson from London's Scotland Yard police department says, "We received a complaint of a serious sexual assault at 1.30am on September 20 at a central London hotel. The 24-year-old victim was referred to the Haven Centre (a victim support centre). A 30-year-old man was arrested on September 21 on suspicion of rape and bailed to return to a London police station in November. He has not been charged and we are still investigating."
Salt the propulsive new thriller from Phillip Noyce (Clear and Present Danger Patriot Games) has been dubbed “Bourne with boobs ” but that label isn’t entirely accurate. In the role of Evelyn Salt a CIA staffer hunted by her own agency after a Russian defector fingers her in a plot to murder Russia’s president Angelina Jolie keeps her two most potent weapons holstered hidden under pantsuits and trenchcoats and the various other components of a super-spy wardrobe that proudly emphasizes function over flash.
But flash is one thing Salt never lacks for. Its breathless cat-and-mouse game hits full-throttle almost from the outset when a former KGB officer named Orlov (Daniel Olbrychski) stumbles into a CIA interrogation room and begins spilling details of a vast conspiracy. Back in the ‘70s hardline elements of the Soviet regime launched an ambitious new front in the Cold War flooding the western world with orphans trained to infiltrate the security complexes of their adopted homelands and wait patiently — decades if necessary — for the order to initiate a series of assassinations intended to trigger a devastating nuclear clash between the superpowers from which the treacherous Reds would emerge triumphant.
The Soviet Union may have long ago collapsed (or did it? Hmmm...) but its army of brainwashed killer orphan spies remains in place and if this crazy Orlov fellow is to be believed they stand poised to reignite the Cold War. It’s a preposterous — even idiotic — scheme but no more so than any of our government’s various harebrained proposals to kill Castro back in the ‘60s. As such the CIA treats it with grave seriousness even the part that that pegs Salt who just happens to be a Russian-born orphan herself as a key player in the conspiracy.
Salt bristles at the accusation but suspecting a set-up she opts to flee rather than face interrogation from her bosses Winter (Liev Schreiber) and Peabody (Chiwetel Ejiofor). A former field agent she’s been confined to a desk job since a clandestine operation in North Korea went south leaving her with a nasty shiner and a rather unremarkable German boyfriend (now her unremarkable German husband). She’s clearly kept up her training during while cubicle-bound however and in a blaze of resourceful thinking and devastating Parkour Fu she fends off a dozen or so agents of questionable competence and takes to the streets where she sets about to clear her name and unravel the Commie orphan conspiracy before the authorities can catch up with her. That is if she isn’t a part of the conspiracy.
The premise which aims to resurrect Cold War tensions and graft them onto a modern-day spy thriller is absurdly clever — and cleverly absurd. But Kurt Wimmer’s screenplay isn’t satisfied with the merely clever and absurd — it must be mind-blowing. Salt is one of those thrillers that ladles out its backstory slowly and in tiny portions every once in a while dropping a revelatory bombshell that effectively blows the lid off everything that happened beforehand. No one is who they seem and every action every gesture no matter how seemingly trivial is imbued with some kind of grand significance. The effect of piling on one insane twist after another has the effect of gradually diluting the narrative. When anything is possible nothing really matters.
But spy thrillers by definition trade in the preposterous and the principal function of the summer blockbuster is to entertain. In that regard Salt more than fulfills its charge. Noyce wisely keeps the story moving at pace that allows little time for asking uncomfortable questions or poking holes in the film’s frail plot. And he has an able partner in the infinitely versatile Jolie who having already exhibited formidable action-hero chops in Wanted and the Tomb Raider films proves remarkably adept at the spy game as well.
It’s well-known that Jolie wasn’t the first choice to star in Salt joining the project only after Tom Cruise dropped out citing the story’s growing similarities to the Mission: Impossible films. But she’s more than just a capable replacement; she’s a welcome upgrade over Cruise not least because she’s over a decade younger (and a few inches taller) than her predecessor. Should Brad Bird require a pinch-hitter for Ethan Hunt he knows where to look.
Robert O'Ryan was arrested in March, 2009 after he attempted to break into the Los Angeles set of Dancing with the Stars, where Johnson was a competitor.
Authorities later found duct tape, a shotgun, a handgun, a knife and a bulletproof vest in his car, and he was charged with felony stalking, felony commercial burglary and two misdemeanour counts of carrying a loaded firearm.
He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity but he was convicted on all charges earlier this month (Jun10).
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge ordered O'Ryan to undergo a psychological evaluation next month (Jul10) to determine whether he should be held in a mental hospital or sentenced to prison time.
Now Johnson, who told the court she was so scared by the stalker she even considered leaving the TV competition for safety reasons, has broken her silence for the first time since O'Ryan's conviction, insisting he needs psychological help.
And the 18 year old hopes the professional treatment will help O'Ryan realise his mistakes and prevent him from targeting other young women.
In an interview on U.S. TV's Good Morning America on Tuesday (22Jun10), she says, "I think it (going to a mental hospital) is better than him going to prison because he is ill and he needs help and he needs to get his life back on track.
"Honestly, I think it's better if he stays there for a long time, because, if he gets out, if it's not me, he could go after someone else, so it's kind of my duty to make sure it doesn't happen."
But Johnson is refusing to let the scare derail her plans to compete in the 2012 Olympics - she reveals she recently began training for the big sporting event, which will take place in London.
A hearing to rule on the outcome of the psychological evaluation is scheduled for 13 July (10). If O'Ryan is found to be mentally stable, he faces a maximum of three years and eight months in state prison, plus two years in county jail. Otherwise, he could serve out his sentence in a state mental hospital.
Lindsay Lohan has had her probation for a 2007 arrest extended by a year to allow the actress more time to complete an alcohol education program.
The Mean Girls star landed herself in trouble after failing to complete the course, which she was ordered to undertake as part of her sentence for driving under the influence (DUI) and drug possession in August 2007.
She was placed on three years' probation as part of her sentence, but was accused of violating the terms of the agreement by only attending 15 of the 26 alcohol education classes and 13 of the 28 self-help sessions she needed to complete.
Lohan was summoned to appear before Beverly Hills Superior Court Judge Marsha Revel on Friday, where her lawyer Shawn Chapman Holley requested her probation be extended, reports TMZ.com.
The judge granted the court motion, although prosecutors warned Lohan she would be thrown behind bars if she did not stick to the terms of her extended probation.
Revel also had some words of encouragement for the actress, saying she was "rooting for (Lohan) to successfully complete her terms of probation."
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A Native American legend tells a story about humans named Skinwalkers who get supernatural powers once they feast on blood. The legend also says a 13 year-old boy will come someday when the moon is blood red and break the curse. Enter Timothy (Matthew Knight) a 13 year-old who lives in the town of Hugenot. His mother (Rhona Mitra) is concerned about her son's persistent nightmares and tells Uncle Jonas (Elias Koteas) she wants to leave town. Maybe it’s because a pack of Skinwalkers led by Varek (Jason Behr) have invaded the town. But Mom is in for a shock. It turns out Uncle Jonas his daughter (Sarah Carter) her fiancé (Shawn Roberts) the mailman (Lyriq Bent) and even Nana (Barbara Gordon) all turn into werewolves once a month and Timothy is the half-breed who may save them. Behr (Roswell) is practically unrecognizable but does a nice job as the long-haired well-built Skinwalker who sets out to kill the boy but soon discovers a secret that changes his mind. His sidekicks are both scary (Kim Coates) and sexy (Natassia Malthe) and they do well playing evil. Familiar character actor Koteas becomes the emotional soul of the film even when he transforms into a werewolf. But it's young Knight (The Grudge 2) who has the biggest challenge showing he can be scared fearless and smart—all at the same time. Not easy to do but the kid handles the chores with aplomb. Skinwalkers is really a rather tame werewolf film not unlike the Lon Chaney versions back in the 1940s. It's hard to make a compelling werewolf movie these days because they focus just on the gore. The classic exception is John Landis’ An American Werewolf in London which combined blood and guts with comedy but Skinwalkers actually comes close. It has action a good story and decent special effects without relying on the usual violence. Skinwalkers’ director James Isaac was responsible for one of the more creative Friday the 13ths Jason X and has a special effects background which is evident in Skinwalkers’ wolf transformations. The battles are nearly Matrix-esque and the scenes of the red moon and the morning sunrises are quite spectacular. The film may have suffered some bad buzz earlier on but it's far better than most of the other werewolf offerings.