The fighter quit college, where he played football with movie star James Caan, to become a professional in the ring.
A heavyweight contender in the 1960s, he was knocked down 11 times during a title fight with Floyd Patterson in 1961 - but he refused to stay on the canvas.
He retired from boxing in 1966 with a 37-14 record.
McNeeley suffered a stroke recently, and was on life support in a Massachusetts hospital when he died on Tuesday (25Oct11).
His son Peter fought Mike Tyson in 1995.
After garnering widespread praise (and an Oscar nomination for screenwriting) for his 2000 directorial debut You Can Count on Me Kenneth Lonergan was in-demand. In September 2005 the writer/director began production on a follow-up feature: Margaret which touted Anna Paquin Matt Damon Mark Ruffalo Matthew Broderick Allison Janney as well as legendary filmmakers Sydney Pollack and Anthony Minghella (The English Patient) as producers. The movie wrapped production in a few months time. The buzz was already growing.
Now six years later the movie is finally hitting theaters. So…what took so long?
The journey to this point hasn't been an easy one and it shows. If a film's shot footage is a block of granite and the editing process is the careful carving that turns it into a statuesque work of art Margaret feels like it was attacked by a blind man with a jackhammer. The film is a cinematic disaster a mishmash of shallow characters overwrought politics and sporadic tones. The story follows Lisa Coen (Paquin) a New York teenager who finds herself drowning in chaos after distracting a bus driver (Ruffalo) causing him to hit and kill a pedestrian (Janney). Initially Lisa tells the police it was all an accident but as time passes regret takes hold and the girl embarks on a mission to take down the man she now regards as a culprit. That's just the tip of the iceberg–along the way Lisa deals with everyday teen stuff: falling for her geometry teacher (Damon) combating her anxiety-ridden actress mother losing her virginity dabbling in drugs debating 9/11 and the Iraq War cultivating a relationship with her father in LA and more. There are about eight seasons of television stuffed into Margaret but even a two and a half hour run time can't make it all click.
For more on Margaret check out Indie Seen: Margaret the Long Lost Anna Paquin/Matt Damon Movie
I, Alex Cross seems to be running through my favorite TV shows of past and present and casting all of the best characters. They got Giancarlo Esposito from Breaking Bad. They went back a couple of years and grabbed Matthew Fox, star of the paramount addiction that was LOST. And before LOST even, there was an absurdist comedy that I couldn't help but love: Scrubs. And Alex Cross tapped them, too. Scrubs' John C. McGinley is joining the movie.
McGinley, who portrayed the vindictive and vehemently verbose virtuoso, Dr. Perry Cox, in the eight-season series (you heard me—EIGHT! There were only EIGHT! NOTHING AFTER THAT COUNTED!) was often Scrubs' greatest attribute. Despite his titanic comic timing, McGinley is actually an actor rooted in drama: thus, he will be right at home in this thriller.
The film is the third adaptation of one of novelist James Patterson's Alex Cross books. The character, a forensic psychologist, was brought to film in 1997 and 2001, for Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider respectively; both times, he was portrayed by Morgan Freeman. This time, he's portrayed by Tyler Perry. Well, you can't have everything.
Back before it was a major world religion, The Fast and the Furious was a simple high-speed action movie directed by Rob Cohen, who had prior to that done most of his directing work for television. Now, Cohen is tacked on for another wearing-its-intensity-on-its-sleeve title, Bullet Run.
Voltage Pictures brought in Cohen after receiving the script, which is your classic “Rogue Agent Married Couple Infiltrates Iran to Avenge their Daughter’s Death” story: a plot that was likely conjured up to serve as a reason to drive really, really fast for ninety minutes.
Cohen is reportedly very excited about the project. Also in the works for the director is a mystery-thriller I, Alex Cross, based on the James Patterson novel: another revenge story (somebody must have wronged Cohen when he was younger) set to star Matthew Fox and Tyler Perry. As a man, this time.
Andrew Hilton, writer of the upcoming The Lost Patrol, penned the script for Bullet Run. Zev Foreman will play executive producer.
The first and most important thing you should know about Paramount Pictures’ Thor is that it’s not a laughably corny comic book adaptation. Though you might find it hokey to hear a bunch of muscled heroes talk like British royalty while walking around the American Southwest in LARP garb director Kenneth Branagh has condensed vast Marvel mythology to make an accessible straightforward fantasy epic. Like most films of its ilk I’ve got some issues with its internal logic aesthetic and dialogue but the flaws didn’t keep me from having fun with this extra dimensional adventure.
Taking notes from fellow Avenger Iron Man the story begins with an enthralling event that takes place in a remote desert but quickly jumps back in time to tell the prologue which introduces the audience to the shining kingdom of Asgard and its various champions. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) son of Odin is heir to the throne but is an arrogant overeager and ill-tempered rogue whose aggressive antics threaten a shaky truce between his people and the frost giants of Jotunheim one of the universe’s many realms. Odin (played with aristocratic boldness by Anthony Hopkins) enraged by his son’s blatant disregard of his orders to forgo an assault on their enemies after they attempt to reclaim a powerful artifact banishes the boy to a life among the mortals of Earth leaving Asgard defenseless against the treachery of Loki his mischievous “other son” who’s always felt inferior to Thor. Powerless and confused the disgraced Prince finds unlikely allies in a trio of scientists (Natalie Portman Stellan Skarsgard and Kat Dennings) who help him reclaim his former glory and defend our world from total destruction.
Individually the make-up visual effects CGI production design and art direction are all wondrous to behold but when fused together to create larger-than-life set pieces and action sequences the collaborative result is often unharmonious. I’m not knocking the 3D presentation; unlike 2010’s genre counterpart Clash of the Titans the filmmakers had plenty of time to perfect the third dimension and there are only a few moments that make the decision to convert look like it was a bad one. It’s the unavoidable overload of visual trickery that’s to blame for the frost giants’ icy weaponized constructs and other hybrids of the production looking noticeably artificial. Though there’s some imagery to nitpick the same can’t be said of Thor’s thunderous sound design which is amped with enough wattage to power The Avengers’ headquarters for a century.
Chock full of nods to the comics the screenplay is both a strength and weakness for the film. The story is well sequenced giving the audience enough time between action scenes to grasp the characters motivations and the plot but there are tangential narrative threads that disrupt the focus of the film. Chief amongst them is the frost giants’ fore mentioned relic which is given lots of attention in the first act but has little effect on the outcome. In addition I felt that S.H.I.E.L.D. was nearly irrelevant this time around; other than introducing Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye the secret security faction just gets in the way of the movie’s momentum.
While most of the comedy crashes and burns there are a few laughs to be found in the film. Most come from star Hemsworth’s charismatic portrayal of the God of Thunder. He plays up the stranger-in-a-strange-land aspect of the story with his cavalier but charming attitude and by breaking all rules of diner etiquette in a particularly funny scene with the scientists whose respective roles as love interest (Portman) friendly father figure (Skarsgaard) and POV character (Dennings) are ripped right out of a screenwriters handbook.
Though he handles the humorous moments without a problem Hemsworth struggles with some of the more dramatic scenes in the movie; the result of over-acting and too much time spent on the Australian soap opera Home and Away. Luckily he’s surrounded by a stellar supporting cast that fills the void. Most impressive is Tom Hiddleston who gives a truly humanistic performance as the jealous Loki. His arc steeped in Shakespearean tragedy (like Thor’s) drums up genuine sympathy that one rarely has for a comic book movie villain.
My grievances with the technical aspects of the production aside Branagh has succeeded in further exploring the Marvel Universe with a film that works both as a standalone superhero flick and as the next chapter in the story of The Avengers. Thor is very much a comic book film and doesn’t hide from the reputation that its predecessors have given the sub-genre or the tropes that define it. Balanced pretty evenly between “serious” and “silly ” its scope is large enough to please fans well versed in the source material but its tone is light enough to make it a mainstream hit.
Wizan died of natural causes after a long illness on Monday (21Mar11) in Westlake Village, California.
He began his career at top talent agency William Morris and helped to guide the careers of actor/director Sydney Pollack and moviemaker Robert Altman, before moving into film production.
His movie credits include 1970s pictures Junior Bonner with Steve McQueen, Jeremiah Johnson with Robert Redford, and Robert Wise thriller Audrey Rose.
Wizan also worked on 1984's Romancing the Stone and 1992 action comedy Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot!, as well as the film adaptations of James Patterson's Alex Cross book Kiss the Girls (1997) and its 2001 sequel Along Came a Spider - the producer's final shoot.
He is survived by his wife Melanie, a son and a daughter, and two step-sons.
*Shudders* Just when you thought the world was getting better (economy improving, Jets NOT in the Super Bowl), it throws you a curve ball that smashes your protective helmet and fractures your skull. Idris Elba, one of the best actors working today, had been set to play Alex Cross in a reboot of the character's film franchise, but according to Deadline has been replaced by Tyler Perry.
Yes, you read that correctly. Tyler. Fucking “Madea.” Perry. He’ll take over the role originated by Morgan Freeman in an adaptation of the new James Patterson novel I, Alex Cross.
And it doesn’t end there. Originally set to direct was David Twohy, a questionable but ample choice. He made thrillers like Pitch Black and wrote some decent pictures like The Fugitive and G.I. Jane in addition to some iffy films like Waterworld. A mixed track record, yes, but he would’ve been better than Rob Cohen, who is currently circling the project as its helmsman. Cohen was responsible for The Fast and the Furious and xXx franchises and is now paired up with Perry. It’s like everything disgusting in the world joined together to form one amoebic blob of mediocrity that will make more money than I ever hope to earn in my lifetime. Fantastic.
The character, created in James Patterson's crime novels, has been immortalised on the big screen by Morgan Freeman, who played the role in 1997's Kiss The Girls and 2001's Along Came a Spider.
Perry has now agreed to take Freeman's place in a new film, which will be helmed by The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor director Rob Cohen. The movie is reportedly titled, I, Alex Cross.
British actor Idris Elba had previously signed up to play Cross in a different adaptation, which is currently on hold, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
MacArthur passed away on Thursday (28Oct10), a family representative tells People.com. Details surrounding the cause of death were not made available as WENN went to press.
The actor seemed destined for a career on the stage and screen, as the adopted son of actress Helen Hayes and her husband, American playwright Charles MacArthur, and he made his big screen debut in 1957 drama The Young Stranger.
MacArthur went on to appear in Walt Disney films Third Man on the Mountain, Kidnapped and Swiss Family Robinson, and in 1961 he made his Broadway debuted opposite a little-known Jane Fonda in Invitation to a March.
The stage performance won him the Theatre World Award for Best New Actor.
He won further acclaim for his roles in 1965 World War II drama, The Battle of the Bulge and Clint Eastwood's 1968 spaghetti Western, Hang 'Em High.
But he is perhaps best known for his role as Detective Dan 'Danno' Williams on the original U.S. TV crime drama Hawaii Five-O, which ran from 1968 to 1980.
MacArthur is survived by his wife of more than 25 years, Helen Beth Duntz, four children and seven grandchildren.
His first two marriages, from 1958 to 1967 to actress Joyce Bulifant, and another, from 1970 to 1975 to actress Melody Patterson, ended in divorce.
The Along Came a Spider writer earned an estimated $70 million (GBP46.7 million) in the last year, while Meyer, whose vampire novels have been transformed into a hit Hollywood franchise, was paid $40 million (GBP26.7 million).
Horror author Stephen King was third on the list with $34 million (GBP22.7 million) and Danielle Steel placed fourth, with $32 million (GBP21.3 million).
They were followed by Ken Follett, Dean Koontz, Janet Evanovich and John Grisham.
Meanwhile, The Notebook writer Nicolas Sparks and Harry Potter's J.K. Rowling rounded out the top 10.