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The Playlist

5 Things You Might Not Know About 'Mad Max'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 12, 2012 10:59 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Any day now, director George Miller will finally get rolling in Namibia on "Fury Road," the long-awaited continuation of the "Mad Max" series. Starring Tom Hardy in the role that launched Mel Gibson's career, with a cast that also includes Charlize Theron and Nicholas Hoult, the film's been in the works for years, but to be getting underway in the next month or two.

The Essentials: The Films Of John Milius

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 12, 2012 10:04 AM
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  • 17 Comments
All those who complain about the liberal domination of Hollywood have never come across John Milius. A film school pal of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, Milius had tried to join the Marine Corp, but was turned away due to his asthma. Instead, he channeled his frustrations into both a life-long obsession with firearms (he was paid for "Jeremiah Johnson" in antique weaponry, and has served on the NRA Board of Directors,) and making some of the most masculine, testosterone-filled movies of all time, both as an acclaimed writer and as a director. The basis for both Paul Le Mat's character in "American Graffiti" and Walter in "The Big Lebowski" -- the Coens are friends of Milius, and offered him the part of Jack Lipnick in "Barton Fink" -- he's one of film history's most singular, colorful characters.

5 Things You Might Not Know About Steven Spielberg's Game-Changing 'Jaws'

  • By The Playlist
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  • April 11, 2012 11:23 AM
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  • 15 Comments
You know what’s a fun task? Trying to convince anyone that Steven Spielberg’s 1975 “Jaws” is not an American classic and a nearly flawless film. It’s kind of impossible, and if you were to somehow take this position, you would either be painfully foolhardy, Armond White, or both.

The Lost, Forgotten & Undersung Projects Of Joss Whedon

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • April 11, 2012 11:04 AM
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  • 8 Comments
Joss Whedon is about to have a very good week. The writer/director/producer has until recently, been best known for his work on television: he turned his poorly-received screenwriting debut "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" into one of the most beloved cult series of all times (which itself got a long-running spin-off, "Angel"), and followed them up with the short-lived but passionately followed sci-fi Western "Firefly," a show that lasted as single season, but managed to get its own cinematic sequel, "Serenity," which marked Whedon's big-screen directorial debut.

Who Should Direct 'Catching Fire'? 5 Directors We Think Could Do The Job

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 11, 2012 9:59 AM
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  • 20 Comments
So, writer-director Gary Ross, having helped make "The Hunger Games" into a gigantic hit, has decided to move on to new pastures. As we reported last week, Ross will be focusing on a new project, and after a few days, Lionsgate officially confirmed he will not be helming "Catching Fire," with both the studio and the director issuing formal statements.

On The Rise 2012: 5 Screenwriters To Keep An Eye On In The Next Few Years

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 10, 2012 11:59 AM
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  • 13 Comments
Unlike in theater or television, writers generally get the short end of the stick in the movie business. When a film doesn't work, the script is blamed, when it does work, the director gets credit. Writers get fired, rehired, fired again, rewritten and screwed out of credit. But that's not to say that once they get the momentum behind them, a screenwriter can't become just as talked about as actors, actresses and directors around Hollywood watering holes and meeting rooms.

The Essentials: 5 Of Michael Curtiz's Greatest Films

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 10, 2012 11:05 AM
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  • 6 Comments
The coming of the auteur theory has meant that filmmakers like Michael Curtiz no longer get much sway among current generations of directors. Curtiz (born Kertész Kaminer Manó in Hungary in 1886), was a workman, a man who flourished in the studio system after being picked out by Jack Warner for his Austrian Biblical epic "Moon of Israel" in 1924). He stayed at the studio for nearly 20 years, taking on whateer he was assigned at a terrifyingly prolific worklate - he made over 100 Hollywood movies up to "The Comancheros" in 1961. And some of them are terrible, as you might expect.

To Get Ready for 'Cabin in the Woods,' Here Are The Top 5 Cabin Movies

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • April 10, 2012 10:05 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Everything from “The Truman Show” to John Carpenter’s “Halloween” is chopped up and blended in the pop culture Cuisinart that is Drew Goddard and Joss Whedon’s irrepressible “Cabin in the Woods.” But it quite clearly owes a certain debt to a very specific type of horror sub-genre set primarily in a rickety homestead in the forest, one just desolate or decrepit enough to be rife with the possibility of evil spirits, demented madmen, psychic trauma… or all of the above. When Whedon originally came to Goddard with the concept, he gleefully suggested making a “cabin movie.” While “Cabin in the Woods” ended up being much more than that (it's an acidic takedown and euphoric celebration of all things horror), we wanted to briefly cite five of the films that contributed, either directly or through the pop culture ether, to “Cabin in the Woods.”

5 Things You May Not Know About The 'The Godfather Part II'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 9, 2012 1:00 PM
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  • 5 Comments
A sprawling three hour and twenty minute American epic crime film, what can you say about Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Godfather Part II” that hasn’t already been said? Nominated for 11 Academy Awards and winning six, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor in a Supporting Role for Robert De Niro “The Godfather Part II” was met with tremendous critical acclaim with many critics claiming it had outdone its predecessor. Award- wise, it had. The original had also bagged 11 nominations, but only had won three.

The Films Of Sidney Lumet: A Retrospective

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 9, 2012 11:00 AM
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  • 13 Comments
Lumet was never fancy. He never needed to be, as a master of blocking, economic camera movements and framing that empowered the emotion and or exact punctuation of a particular scene. First and foremost, as you’ve likely heard ad nauseum -- but hell, it’s true -- Lumet was a storyteller, and one that preferred his beloved New York to soundstages (though let's not romanticize it too much, he did his fair share of work on studio film sets too as most TV journeyman and early studio filmmakers did).

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