The actor struggled to comprehend the complicated twists and turns of the sci-fi movie and spent hours talking with Nolan about his character Dominic Cobb, a thief who steals information from his unconscious victims while they dream.
DiCaprio tells the Hollywood Reporter: "I needed to know implicitly where we were. It got incredibly confusing at certain points in the beginning, but the more we talked, the more I understood."
Meanwhile Inception's producer Emma Thomas, filmmaker Nolan's wife, has praised DiCaprio for making the movie more accessible for fans, adding: "The work (Leo) did on his character with Chris made the movie less of a puzzle and more of a story of a character audiences could relate to."
The actor insists The Dark Knight Rises will be his final outing as the comic book superhero - unless director Christopher Nolan has other plans.
Bale says, "This will be, I believe, until Chris says different, the last time I’ll be playing Batman."
Perhaps Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows should have been a trilogy. Splitting the sprawling finale to author J.K. Rowling’s boy wizard saga into three parts — as opposed to its chosen two-part incarnation — might have come across as shameless profiteering (admittedly a not-uncommon practice in this town) but it wouldn’t have been without merit. At 759 pages Rowling’s source novel is said to be a rather dense work plot-wise; surely it could have easily warranted another installment?
I only say this because Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 though certainly a decent film clearly strains from the effort required to fit the book’s proceedings into a two-act structure. While Part 2 slated to open approximately six months from now is alotted the story's meaty parts — namely the spectacular Battle of Hogwarts and its emotional denouement — Part 1 must bear the burden of setting the stage for the grand confrontation between the forces of Light and Dark magic and framing the predicament of its three protagonists teen wizards Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) and Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) in suitably dire terms. And it's quite a heavy burden indeed.
As the film opens the evil Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) having assumed control over Hogwarts since the events of the preceding film Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince has wasted no time in initiating his reign of terror. As far as historical evil-dictator analogues are concerned Voldemort appears partial to the blueprint laid by Stalin as opposed to that of his genocidal pact-pal Hitler. Enemies of the Dark Lord's regime are prosecuted in dramatic show trials presided over by the Grand Inquisitor Dolores Umbridge (Imelda Staunton) while muggles (non-magic folk) and half-bloods are denounced as "undesirables" and “mudbloods” in Soviet-style propaganda posters and forced to register with the authorities.
As the only viable threat to Voldemort’s dominion Harry and his allies are hunted vigorously by Bellatrix LeStrange (Helena Bonham Carter) and her goon squad of Death Eaters. The Boy Who Lived now fully grown and in more or less complete command of his powers is still no match England's nasally scourge. Labeled "Undesirable No. 1" by the Gestapo-like Ministry of Magic he's is forced to go on the lam where he labors along with Ron and Hermione to solve the riddle of Voldemort’s immortality.
For those not well-versed in Rowling’s source material the film’s opening act is a frustrating blur: After an all-too-brisk update on the bleak state of affairs in Hogwarts we are hastily introduced (or re-introduced) to a dozen or so characters the majority of whom are never seen again. A few even perish off-screen. Had we gotten a chance to get to know them we might be able to mourn them as our heroes do; instead we’re left racking our brains trying to recall who they were and how they figured in the plot.
Rowling's flaws as a storyteller — the over-reliance on deus ex machina devices (in this case we get both a doe ex machina and a Dobby ex machina) the ponderous downloads of information (not unlike those of that other uber-anticipated and somewhat overrated 2010 tentpole Inception) the annoying ability of characters to simply teleport (or "disapparate") away from danger etc. — are more evident in this film than in previous chapters. And rather than obscure these flaws director David Yates and screenwriter Steve Kloves both franchise veterans arguably amplify them.
What saves the film are Rowling's three greatest achievements: Harry Ron and Hermione who along with the actors who play them have evolved beyond the material. The film's narrative gains its emotional footing during the heroic threesome's exile ostensibly a series of camping trips — with tents and everything — during which they reflect on their journey together the challenge that awaits them and the sacrifices it will require. Though they occasionally verge on tedious these excursions into Gethsemane allow us precious quality time with these characters that we've grown to adore over the course of seven films even if the plaintive air is spoiled a bit by some rather puzzling attempts at product placement. In their rush to flee the Dementors and Death Eaters it seems that they at least took care to pack the latest in fall fashion:
As devout readers of Rowling's novels know all too well the only foolproof shield against Voldemort's minions is the Bananicus Republicum charm.
The public relations mogul was shot multiple times while driving her Mercedes-Benz car through Beverly Hills on her way home from the premiere of Cher and Christina Aguilera's new film Burlesque.
Her death has shocked the showbiz world, and many stars have been quick to pay tribute to Chasen, including her screenwriter/director brother Cohen.
He says, "She was my sister and best friend and we shared so many wonderful times together. Ronni was a loving and caring person who treated her clients like they were her own family."
Producers Lili and Richard Zanuck worked with Chasen on the Oscars campaign for Driving Miss Daisy - which went on to win the 1989 Best Picture honour - and were devastated to learn of her death.
A statement from Richard reads, "Lili and I are shattered by the unthinkably sad news about Ronni. She has been a loving and dear friend for so many years. To think of not being able to get her on the other line of the phone is unimaginable. She was the best publicist in the business in our opinion whose tireless and determined energy combined with her love of movies made her one of a very special breed."
Film composer Hans Zimmer, who was also a client of Chasen, adds, "I'm profoundly sad, devastated, mad, incredulous and lonely. She was radiant. She knew everybody in the room. She took Chris Nolan over to the next table and introduced him to George Lucas. I was watching her (and) standing there listening to them and I thought, 'There's my friend Ronni, introducing two great directors to each other. She's on top of her game.'"
Police have launched an investigation into Chasen's death.
The Dark Knight Rises is quickly becoming one of the most anticipated sequels of all-time, so it makes sense we're pooping our pants with excitement.
Anyway, we have more Batman news. Hooray! Deadline reports that Christopher Nolan will meet with six actresses for two female roles in the upcoming Dark Knight sequel -- one as the love interest of Bruce Wayne and the other as a villain (dun dun dun).
The six lucky ladies? Some of the biggest names in Hollywood: Rachel Weisz, Naomi Watts, Blake Lively, Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway, and Keira Knightley.
So, wow! That's quite the list. Aside from Lively, I could see each one of these women working with Nolan. But, if I have to choose, I'd say the best bet would be Rachel Weisz as the love interest, and Natalie Portman as the villain. Think about it. Yeah, Weisz has quite a few not so good films on her resume, but she is an Oscar winner. If Wayne's love interest would be someone like Lively, I'm afraid it'd become a little too unrealistic and cartoonish, mainly because she's an awful actress. Plus, I've always imagined Bruce Wayne as a fan of brunettes.
And as far as the villain goes, no one fits better than Portman. First of all, she's a terrific actress. But more than that, remember how extremely badass she was in V For Vendetta? And that was on the heroic side. Now imagine if she channeled all that badassery into being Batman's arch-rival. Someone like -- Catwoman. Yeah, I know. Awesome idea, right? You're welcome, Nolan. You're welcome.
Oh yeah, and since we're talking about Batman, our opinion of the new movie's name is still the same: it's lame. Check out our much better suggestions right here.
Nolan is refusing to give up more information about the plot or characters involved in the blockbuster - but he has told the Los Angeles Times not to expect one Batman villain.
He says, "It won't be the Riddler."
The media has been speculating about who will play the famous villain for months after insiders claimed The Riddler would be Batman's foe in the film.
Hugh Jackman is pumped up for Wolverine 2 -- literally.
"Expect to see four chicken breasts and a whole pile of steamed broccoli on my plate,” he told Vulture. "I'm starting; I’m having my six meals a day."
He also confirmed that Darren Aronofsky will indeed be directing Wolverine 2. He claims that it will not be the "usual" X-Men movie. And honestly, it's Aronofsky. That's not too surprising.
Jackman can't seem to contain his excitement to work with Aronofsky again. The two last collaborated on 2006's ambitious sci-fi romance The Fountain, and have developed a good relationship as a result.
"This is, hopefully for me, going to be out of the box. It’s going to be the best one, I hope," he said. "Well, I would say that, but I really do feel that, and I feel this is going to be very different."
"This is Wolverine. This is not Popeye. He’s kind of dark," Jackman said. "But, you know, this is a change of pace. Chris McQuarrie, who wrote The Usual Suspects, has written the script, so that’ll give you a good clue. [Aronofsky's] going to make it fantastic. There's going to be some meat on the bones. There will be something to think about as you leave the theater, for sure."
Personally, after hearing Jackman's excitement about the proposed production, I think this is exactly how Wolverine should be done and there's no one better to handle it than Darren Aronofsky (well, except for maybe Christopher Nolan. But if I had my way, he'd remake every superhero film ever made). These words -- dark, meaty, different -- are what has me particularly stoked about the film. These words cannot be used to describe X-Men Origins: Wolverine. That film definitely lacked character and depth. after Aronofosky's terrific work in The Wrestler and Black Swan, it's clear that he's on a roll and I can't wait to see him examine Wolverine with the same microscope that he's used to explore the dark corners of the human spirit in his past films.
Everyone who is writing this article and is either not a fan of Inception or not excited about the third Batman movie, please stop writing right now and go take your medication.
Ok, glad we got that out of the way. We feel much better now. In what is to be the second biggest announcement about the movie, Tom Hardy has joined the cast in a major role. No word on who (or WHAT) he will be playing but seeing as the role of Batman and Alfred has been taken and the last love got (SPOILERS) killed (END SPOILERS), we’re fairly certain he’ll be a villain. Also, we're fairly certain he won't be Robin because that would just be silly.
Hardy was a pleasant surprise in Inception. I was familiar with everyone else in the cast except for him and he turned out to be one of my favorite characters. And have you seen pictures of him in Bronson? Holy jacked-up prison rage Batman! That man can get stacked!
Let the speculation begin on his role! Killer Croc seems to be the latest possibility, according to the people who have no involvement with the project whatsoever. I think this could potentially be a cool villain, I trust Christopher Nolan with at least 8 of my 9 personalities, and Killer Croc was cool in the video game Arkham Asylum. But I was personally hoping for David Tennant or Joesph Gordon-Levitt to play The Riddler, but it doesn’t look that way. Or maybe it still will be! As soon as I calm down from hearing what Hardy will play or the most trivial bits of news, we’ll let you know.
127 Hours the new film from Slumdog Millionaire’s Academy Award-winning writer-director duo Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle feels like it was made in the titular time frame. The movie is choppy and fast-paced like the adventures of its daredevil protagonist Aron Ralston who amputated his own arm after an accident in the cavernous regions of Moab Utah in 2003. This kinetic style of filmmaking (similar to how Slumdog was produced) succeeds in artistically recreating the horrific events of those five painful days but prevents the audience from developing an essential emotional connection with the character and renders the movie limp with more style than substance.
The story begins with Mr. Ralston’s (played adequately by James Franco) ritualistic preparation for intense outdoors activities. He ignores his mother’s phone call (and it’s clearly not the first time he’s done this) so he can begin his extreme expedition that much faster. This selfish attribute is true to the character and foreshadows his eventual arc but Boyle stumbles around with irrelevant narrative detours involving a pair of female thrill-seekers and a barely-seen sister and ex-girlfriend. These subplots are ultimately counter-productive and feel out-of-place.
Instead of providing the character’s backstory through a traditional prologue we learn about Ralston’s past through his own sleep/food/water-deprived hallucinations while he’s stuck beneath a boulder at the bottom of a canyon. In this grim ill-fated state the audience is supposed to feel remorseful and on a basic level of human compassion we do. However it’s difficult to sympathize with a character as arrogant and narcissistic as Ralston who admits that he’s brought this situation on himself.
In terms of craft Boyle is at the top of his game. Aron’s spiritual breakthrough is dramatized by surreal visual sequences that deliver the most moving imagery in the entire film. His use of sound effects particularly enhanced the harrowing experience as do the realistic prosthetics used to depict his bloody sacrifice.
Though the film has the tension and suspense that made similarly-themed survival tales like Castaway and Rescue Dawn moving it lacks an introduction that builds a bond between audience and character debilitating the effect of Aron’s eventual triumph. Many will rejoice when they see Ralston emerge from his mountainous prison a wiser and more appreciative man but there’s never much reason to root for him throughout the picture unless you’re simply hoping for a happy ending.
September 28, 2010 5:18am EST
According to reports on Monday, Darren Aronofsky is in -- and Ben Affleck is out of -- the running to direct the new Superman movie at Warner Bros.
Christopher Nolan is producing the new film and is looking for a director who is able to handle the elaborate production and willing to collaborate, reports Heat Vision.
Rumored meetings taking place include sit-downs between Nolan and Warner execs and such directors as Duncan Jones, Jonathan Liebesman, Matt Reeves, Tony Scott and Zack Snyder.
According to HV sources, Affleck met about Superman last week but is no longer pursuing it.
Aronofsky, said HV sources, is still in active talks. The Los Angeles Times reported similar source chatter.
Per HV: "If [Aronofsky] were to get the gig, there would be some irony: A decade ago, Aronofsky was attached to direct a Batman movie loosely based on a storyline written by Frank Miller. That didn't happen, and it paved the way for Nolan to direct Batman Begins."
HitFix has put together its own list of candidates, which includes Gore Verbinski, Kathryn Bigelow and Michael Bay.
Click here for the full story