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The Playlist

15 Young Adult Fiction Properties That Could Be The Next 'Twilight' Or 'Hunger Games'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 23, 2012 11:56 AM
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  • 72 Comments
Today sees the release of "The Hunger Games," the much anticipated adaptation of the popular young adult novel series about a future in which children are forced to compete in a fight to the death for the entertainment of the overclass, and to help their district fight off starvation. The books have been bestsellers, and Lionsgate have pegged the film to be their own answer to another hugely popular teen-skewing franchise, vampire romances "Twilight." And it looks as if the gamble has paid off, with most prognosticators pegging the film to open well over $100 million in the U.S. this weekend.

We Read It: Michael Mann & John Logan's Unmade 1930s Noir A Nasty Look At Old Hollywood That Doesn't Quite Work

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 21, 2012 1:56 PM
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  • 9 Comments
Of all the unmade, potentially great projects of the last few years, one of the most talked-about is the untitled 1930s noir thriller penned by Oscar nominee John Logan ("The Aviator," "Hugo") with the intention that Michael Mann would direct, and Leonardo DiCaprio would star. The project started doing the rounds back in 2007, but despite interest from New Line, the film, with an estimated budget of $120 million, proved too expensive and too risky to get made.

Discuss: Why Are There So Few Reliable Leading Men, And Who Might Yet Become One?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 20, 2012 4:01 PM
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  • 80 Comments
The box office is up in 2012, but of the ten biggest grossers of the year so far, only one, "Safe House" was sold on the back of an established A-list star, namely Denzel Washington. The rest, for the most part, featured total unknowns, or in the case of "Act of Valor," active Navy SEALs, rather than actors. This is not, it should be said, a new trend. From "Avatar" to "Star Trek," big movies have been shunning established names in the favor of new faces for quite a while. But it is indicative of a problem that Hollywood has been facing lately: a distinct lack of new leading men.

Richard Linklater & Matthew McConaughey Talk The Odd DNA Of 'Bernie'

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • March 19, 2012 4:52 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Ever since his debut, “Slacker,” earned him a spot on the national filmmaking stage, Richard Linklater has been one of Texas’ favorite sons. It’s certainly helped that so many of his movies not only took place in the state, but paid real and honest tribute to its citizens, without insult or parody. But in “Bernie,” his latest, he skirts that line between celebrating and satirizing Texans with his retelling of the true story of Bernie Tiede, a funeral director who killed an elderly widow and threatened to go free thanks to his hometown’s near-universal affection for the man. Jack Black stars as the title character, and Matthew McConaghey plays the self-aggrandizing prosecutor who despite his legitimate pursuit of justice ultimately proves to be the film’s unexpected villain.

Vengeful Gods, Slaves & Mere Mortals: Deconstructing The ‘Prometheus’ Trailer

  • By The Playlist
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  • March 19, 2012 2:06 PM
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  • 13 Comments
The trailer for Ridley Scott’s upcoming, much-anticipated sci-fi film, “Prometheus” has landed and pardon our French, but holy shit, it’s rather astounding. Christopher Nolan you’re officially on blast and you may need to raise your game for ‘TDKR’ trailer number two.

10 Reasons Why '21 Jump Street' Exceeded Expectations

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 19, 2012 12:57 PM
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  • 8 Comments
On paper, "21 Jump Street" was not an enticing proposition. A reboot of a 1980s TV series with a ludicrous premise -- fresh-faced cops go undercover as high school students. Produced by Neal Moritz, a man whose last attempt at an action-comedy reboot of a famous property was the dreadful "The Green Hornet." Directed by two first-time live-action feature directors. Written by the man behind "Project X." And starring Jonah Hill, coming off a terrible R-rated comedy flop, in "The Sitter," and Channing Tatum, a man whose previous turns weren't so much performed as whittled out of wood. 

The Dardenne Brothers Say They Originally Planned A Different Ending For 'Kid With A Bike'

  • By Christopher Bell
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  • March 17, 2012 9:59 AM
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  • 2 Comments
What can be said about the Dardenne brothers that five Cannes awards don't already say much more definitively? Even a mediocre splotch in their oeuvre is twelve notches above most other contemporary films that get paraded around on the blogosphere.

SXSW '12 Interview: Guy Maddin Talks Making 100 Short Films In 100 Days In Four Countries With Current Project 'Spiritismes'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 16, 2012 4:04 PM
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  • 1 Comment
If you've been at a film festival at the last few months, chances are you've bumped into Guy Maddin. The idiosyncratic Canadian director of "Twilight of the Ice Nymphs," "The Saddest Music In The World" and "My Winnipeg," has a new film, offbeat haunted house tale "Keyhole," starring Jason Patric and Isabella Rossellini, and he's been on the festival circuit in a big way, debuting the film at TIFF (read our review from there), before heading to Halifax's Atlantic Film Festival, and then last month Berlin (where we interviewed the director), before landing in the last week at SXSW.

Discuss: Are 3D Re-Releases For 'Titanic' & 'Jurassic Park' Just The Tip Of The Nostalgia Iceberg?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • March 16, 2012 1:04 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Yesterday, Universal announced that they'd shifted their hopeful Tom Cruise blockbuster "Oblivion" into April, to make way for a prime, heart-of summer slot for a movie that will be twenty years old in 2013 -- a 3D re-jig of Steven Spielberg's "Jurassic Park," the one-time biggest hits of all time. And it's one of a wave of these stereo-ized re-releases, from last fall's surprise hit "The Lion King" and February's "Star Wars: The Phantom Menace" (with the sequels planned to hit over the next five years) to next month's "Titanic 3D."

SXSW '12: Richard Linklater & Matthew McConaughey Talk Revisiting Wooderson In Prospective 'Dazed And Confused' Sorta-Sequel

  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • March 16, 2012 10:17 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Despite his status as something of an indie auteur, Richard Linklater is reassuringly populist in his thinking about movies, particularly when it comes to sequels. In 2004 he produced a sequel to “Before Sunrise” entitled “Before Sunset,” and after “School of Rock” became a runaway success, he and star Jack Black have spent years trying to mount a follow-up. But when it comes to his much-beloved “Dazed and Confused,” Linklater hasn’t explored that possibility as actively, although in interviews not long ago he mentioned the possibility of a second installment – well, sort of.

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