The Playlist

Matthew Vaughn Was A Yeller, Already Thinking Sequels & 18 Things Learned About 'X-Men First Class'

  • By Edward Davis
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  • June 3, 2011 6:47 AM
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  • 10 Comments
"X" marks the spot! (Sorry, had to go there.) After a long wait, at least quality-wise, the mutants are back and "X-Men: First Class" has arrived and opens in theaters nationwide today. This super hero film also lands with a rather huge sigh of relief to three distinctly different groups of people. 1) The fans: after having to endure two mediocre to abysmal installments of the 'X-Men' series ("X-Men: The Last Stand" and "X-Men Origins: Wolverine"), the Matthew Vaughn-directed "X-Men: First Class," is a nice return to form and almost on-par with Bryan Singer's much beloved "X2" (read our positive review) 2) The non-disastrous quality of the film is also a huge sigh of relief to the cast who were expecting something else. 'First Class' was shot, edited and finished in a lightning-fast 10-month period and actors have already publicly admitted that the uber-rushed-production of the film made them worry they were putting their efforts into polishing a turd. So a remarkably steady picture -- also considering the myriad story threads -- is not only a major comfort, it's a major surprise. 3) The studio: Trying to get their blockbuster brand back to health, 20th Century Fox gambled big time with the rushed schedule of "X-Men: First Class," but thanks to Vaughn they rolled snake eyes. This should be precipitating whoops and cheers from the execs, frankly.The film wasn't cheap to make, the actual production was one huge question mark, but now their franchise is back in good standing with critics (and soon to be fans) and sequels will surely be on their way (and yes, everyone in the cast is signed up for a trilogy, as is de rigueur these days). The film's arrival is good news to everyone.

First Reactions To 'X-Men: First Class' Suggest It's The Summer Home-Run We've Been Waiting For

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 23, 2011 1:02 AM
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  • 18 Comments
Since the start of the year, we haven't been shy about our opinion that "X-Men: First Class" seemed to be the most promising of the four superhero entries landing this summer. The cast is great, Matthew Vaughn looks ready to step up a level, and the trailers have been among the best-cut of the year. But things haven't all been rosy: rumors of a lengthy, chaotic shoot have been rife, and the posters have been as bad as the trailers have been good, while the most recent clip for the film seemed rushed and weightless.

Michael Fassbender, Tilda Swinton & Mia Wasikowska To Star In Vampire Film From Jim Jarmusch

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 16, 2011 11:38 AM
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  • 3 Comments
John Hurt Also In CastThe idea of the vampire, that of the undead creature that survives by feeding off the blood of living people -- is an enormously resilient, resonant one, so it makes sense that there continue to be dozens of stories about them -- barely a year has gone by in the history of cinema without at least one example. But the last few years, it's gotten ridiculous: from blockbusters like "Twilight" and the upcoming "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter," to indies like "Let The Right One In" and its American remake, to TV series like "True Blood" and "The Vampire Diaries," the damn things are everywhere, and we can't be the only people who are sick of them. At this stage, it would take a really, really interesting line-up of talent to make us interested in a vampire flick again.

Steve Coogan & Robert Sheehan Join Michael Fassbender In Punk-Rock Biopic 'Good Vibrations'

  • By Simon Dang
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  • May 12, 2011 4:57 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Bronagh Gallagher Also On Board; Liam Cunningham Exits?Steve Coogan and Robert Sheehan aren't exactly strangers to the exploration of real life musical figures on film, having both starred in "24 Hour Party People" and "Killing Bono" respectively, and it looks like they're set to go down a similar path once again. The two actors have joined "Cherrybomb" co-directors Glenn Leyburn and Lisa Barros D’Sa's "Good Vibrations," the story of Northern Ireland's godfather of punk, Terri Hooley.

Michael Fassbender In Talks To Star In Danny Boyle's Art-Heist Thriller 'Trance'

  • By Simon Dang
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  • May 7, 2011 2:25 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Film Revealed As Remake Of British Telemovie; Scheduled For March 2013 Theatrical ReleaseMerely days after the surprise announcement of Danny Boyle's next directorial effort "Trance," comes word that Irish-German thespian Michael Fassbender is now in talks to star. While details were scarce initially the picture has now been revealed as the remake of a 2003 British telemovie of the same name written and directed by Joe Ahearne.

Michael Fassbender & Liam Cunningham To Star In Northern Irish Punk Movie 'Good Vibrations'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 5, 2011 12:59 PM
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  • 1 Comment
David Holmes To Write The ScoreConsidering the way in which punk rock changed the music world so comprehensively, it's surprising that relatively few films have been made following the great bands of the era. There have been great documentaries, from "The Filth and the Fury" to Ramones doc "End of a Century" and "Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten," and a handful of dramatic features -- "Sid and Nancy" and "SLC Punk," while both flawed, have much to recommend them. But for the most part, the genre has produced films closer to the terrible Ian Dury biopic "Sex & Drugs & Rock and Roll" than to anything else.

Robert Pattinson, Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender & More Sought For 'Akira'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • March 22, 2011 3:48 AM
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  • 39 Comments
Garrett Hedlund, Chris Pine, Justin Timberlake & Joaquin Phoenix Also In The MixThe long-gestating "Akira" remake seems to have been knocking around for awhile now and to Warner Bros' credit, they are trying to get it as right as possible before moving this thing forward. With most fans outright skeptical of how the studio is going to change the wild, decidedly not mainstream manga into a broadly appealing, PG-13 two-film franchise, last month the studio brought in the big guns which -- for better or worse -- point in the direction they're headed. Steve Kloves, who has penned seven of the eight ‘Harry Potter’ movies, was tasked with polishing the script for the gestating project and WB appear to be very happy with his work.

Review: 'Jane Eyre' A Hauntingly Effective Gothic Drama

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • March 10, 2011 5:13 AM
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  • 5 Comments
When tasked with reimagining Charlotte Brontë's immortal "Jane Eyre," which seems to be adapted somewhere, by someone, every couple of years, some key decisions must be made. The impulse that seems to have seized director Cary Fukunaga was to emphasize the gothic horror elements of the story, while making the narrative more structurally complex, allowing for more of Jane's back story to slip into the movie (it's the stuff most commonly left out of the multitude of adaptations).

Resoundingly Crap New Posters For 'X-Men: First Class' Debut

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 9, 2011 1:54 AM
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  • 9 Comments
We're beginning to suspect that someone at 20th Century Fox's marketing department is deliberately fucking with Matthew Vaughn, perhaps as revenge for bailing on "X-Men: The Last Stand" all those years ago. For some time, the "Kick-Ass" director's return to the mutant franchise, in the form of prequel "X-Men: First Class" was a mystery, outside of a few spy photos of the cast filming. Then, our first look at the film's line-up of heroes and villains came in a campy, badly-Photoshopped image that mysteriously leaked onto the net back in January.

Cary Fukunaga Talks His Horror/Romance Take On 'Jane Eyre' With Michael Fassbender & Mia Wasikoska

  • By Kimber Myers
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  • March 8, 2011 7:39 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Indie Filmmaker Also Discusses His Gestating Musical With Owen Pallett, His African Civil War Drama 'Beasts Of No Nation,' & His Good Filmmaking Fortune So FarExclusive: Delighting fans of period romance everywhere -- and kids who can't be bothered with even the Cliffs Notes of the classic Charlotte Brontë novel --"Jane Eyre" is making another appearance on screen. But rather than coming from a predictably English pedigree, the 2011 Focus Features version arrives from the seemingly unlikely source of Cary Fukunaga, a young American director with a single feature to his name, 2009's gritty immigration thriller "Sin Nombre." Fukunaga went young with his casting, opting for Mia Wasikoska ("The Kids Are All Right") to play to the title role, while Michael Fassbender ("Hunger," the dreams of many a female Playlister) takes on the brooding part of Edward Rochester.

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