The Playlist

Denzel Washington Turned Down Small Role In 'Fast & Furious 7'

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • August 1, 2013 11:10 AM
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  • 3 Comments
During a longwinded, occasionally entertaining rant about how studios can't seem to formulate new intellectual properties, Deadline's Mike Fleming, Jr. let some biggish news slip: Denzel Washington, who can be seen in this weekend's oddly satisfying shoot 'em up "2 Guns," turned down a "small role" in the next "Fast and Furious" movie (currently titled "Fast & Furious 7"), to be directed by James Wan ("The Conjuring," "Insidious: Chapter 2"). No details on who Denzel would have played or why he turned down the role, but Fleming is still hopeful that a major star can fill the void before Wan starts shooting. Considering Universal has already set a July 6th, 2014 date for "Fast & Furious 7," they'd better hurry up and find someone.

Interview: Miles Teller Talks Unbroken Takes In James Ponsoldt’s ‘The Spectacular Now,’ Admiration For Donny Osmond & More

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • August 1, 2013 10:59 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The Spectacular Now
Since his portrayal of a guilt-wracked young man in “Rabbit Hole” deservedly vaulted him into the spotlight, actor Miles Teller has committed to different shades of the high school/college experience. He snagged considerable parts in “Project X” and “21 and Over”—both anarchic, single-night party films—and while upcoming projects range from YA sci-fi franchises (“Divergent”) to college-graduate dramas (“Get A Job”), he first realizes a stunning take on teenage love in James Ponsoldt’s “The Spectacular Now.”

Watch: Spike Lee Strongly Defends Kickstarter Campaign & Matthew McConaughey Reaveals His Fave Spike Lee Joint

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 1, 2013 10:39 AM
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  • 10 Comments
Spike Lee
This past week or so, it's been all about Spike Lee doin' work. The filmmaker launched a Kickstarter campaign for his next film last week, and faced immediate support and criticism for his efforts to crowdsource $1.25 million dollars, but he's been pushing forward with the enthusiasm he's known for. He's received high profile support and funds from Steven Soderbergh, dropped his list of Essential Films that he gives his students and has been spending a lot of time elaborating how his efforts are bringing a new audience to Kickstarter. But he may have reached a tipping point in defending his latest joint.
More: Spike Lee

Paramount Animation Planning Live Action/Animated Franchise 'Monster Trucks' With Blue Sky's Chris Wedge

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • August 1, 2013 10:37 AM
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  • 0 Comments
According to a Deadline report, Paramount Animation is about to get serious about the cartoon game. After winning the Best Animated Feature Oscar last year for "Rango," and letting their distribution deal with DreamWorks Animation lapse, the studio pledged to seriously commit to original animated product, the first of which was an as-yet-untitled sequel to "The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie." Now they're going for an even bigger project: "Monster Trucks," a $100 million live action/animated hybrid to be directed by Chris Wedge ("Ice Age," "Epic") that Deadline describes as being the first in a "'Transformers'-like franchise." Our guess is that, with a movie called "Monster Trucks," the trucks are going to turn into actual monsters. Why wouldn't they?

Zhang Yimou Replaces Tim Burton On Josh Brolin-Starring 'Quasimodo'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 1, 2013 10:23 AM
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  • 1 Comment
File this under: Projects You Forgot About. Way back in 2011, it emerged that Tim Burton and Josh Brolin were teaming on a new big screen version of Victor Hugo's "The Hunchback Of Notre Dame," with a script from Kieran and Michele Mulroney, the writing pair behind the upcoming "Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows." And then basically nothing was heard about it again. Burton has since directed "Dark Shadows" and "Frankenweenie," while we're not even going to list the movies Brolin has been in, but it looks like the project is kicking back to life.

Exclusive: Chilling 3-Minute Clip From Thriller 'The Frozen Ground' Starring John Cusack

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 1, 2013 9:58 AM
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  • 3 Comments
The Frozen Ground John Cusack
While John Cusack has cemented himself a place in film history thanks to memorable performances in movies like "Say Anything," "High Fidelity," "Grosse Point Blank," "Being John Malkovich" and more, he's also an actor with a diverse range of talents. Later this month, he'll be seen playing none other than Richard Nixon in "Lee Daniels' The Butler," showing audiences a different side of his skills. Also coming out in August, there's another movie that will highlight Cusack's range, one in which he takes a role about as far away from Lloyd Dobler as you can get.

Len Wiseman Leaves The Crypt, Won't Direct 'The Mummy' Reboot

  • By Cain Rodriguez
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  • August 1, 2013 9:41 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The news earlier this year that Universal hired “The Hunger Games” and “Captain Phillips” writer Billy Ray to pen a new screenplay for “The Mummy” reboot, after “Prometheus” writer Jon Spaihts turned in his own separate draft, signalled perhaps that the studio still wasn't sure which direction to take. And now, the plans for the reboot are going to get more complicated for Universal as director Len Wiseman walks away from the project.

David Yates Embraces The Power & Money Of Directing The 'Scarface' Remake

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 1, 2013 9:17 AM
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  • 2 Comments
It would appear that "Harry Potter" franchise director David Yates has a gangster itch he really wants to scratch. You might recall that the helmer has long been attached to the Al Capone movie "Cicero" over at Warner Bros., that has Tom Hardy to set to star. Earlier this year, development on that picture continued as Tom Shepherd was brought in write a new draft of the script, first penned by Walon Green (”The Wild Bunch,” “Sorcerer,” “The Brink’s Job”) and later rewritten by Yates. But could the director now be jumping ship to another studio for a remake based on the life of Al Capone?

Frank Miller Reportedly Meeting With Zack Snyder About 'Superman Vs. Batman'

  • By Cain Rodriguez
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  • August 1, 2013 8:58 AM
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  • 12 Comments
When the as-of-yet-untitled “Superman Vs. Batman” movie that was announced at Comic-Con last month, “Man of Steel” actor—and man with the golden pipes—Henry Lennix read aloud a quote from the seminal 1986 graphic novel “The Dark Knight Returns” to give nerds a tease for the kind of direction Zack Snyder and David S. Goyer are looking to go with the film. So it should come as no surprise that Snyder is apparently meeting with the graphic novel’s writer Frank Miller to talk about the highly anticipated film.

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