We’ve got a treat for The Avengers’ fans: Marvel Studios has released a new “moving” poster featuring our favorite heroes in action. The poster features Captain America front and center, with the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, Black Widow and Hawkeye in the background. Most of the pics and posters we’ve seen, and The Avengers trailer, feature Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner. This is one of our first glimpses of him as the Hulk. Click on the poster to watch it move!
Category Archives: News
Summit Entertainment has taken one of the joys of the DVD and Blu-Ray experience and brought it to a trailer for one of their theatrical releases. Elizabeth Banks stars in Man on a Ledge and provides a vocal and video commentary to the film’s latest trailer.
The film stars Sam Worthington (check out our interview) as a former cop who was sent to jail for a crime he did not commit. He breaks out of prison, only to find his way to a Manhattan hotel. Worthington’s character then heads out on the ledge of the building, dozens of stories above the city’s streets, all in an effort to clear his name.
Man on a Ledge also stars Jamie Bell (don’t miss our exclusive Q&A), Ed Harris and Ed Burns and arrives in theaters January 27.
The sequel to Matthew Broderick’s career-defining movie, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, has been rumored for decades. What form would it take? Clearly, he would be taking a day off of work. But given the cultural significance of that first movie, how can you top it? News arrives today that Broderick is back as Bueller, but unfortunately it looks like it’s not for a sequel. In the video below, obtained by Movie Fanatic, the actor is his famous character once more in the smallest of teases… for a Super Bowl commercial. Boom boom… Chicka-chicka!
Liam Neeson dazzles in The Grey, out this week. It is a powerful film that shows off all the reasons we adore the Irish actor. Neeson is commanding on screen, while still possessing a vulnerability and venerability that is untouchable in Hollywood currently. Since he first burst onto the acting world at large in the early 1980s, Neeson has compiled an impressive list of movies. But, what are his top 10?
Darkman essentially introduced Neeson to larger American audiences in the tale of a flawed hero who does what is necessary to achieve justice, and simply… to survive. The film arrived in 1990 and is largely a superhero origins story. Directed by Spider-Man’s Sam Raimi, Neeson caused chills with his portrayal of Peyton Westlake, a scientist who is attacked and left for dead only to survive and return for revenge.
9. The Bounty
Neeson had a tiny role in 1984’s The Bounty, and the film rivets. Mel Gibson and Anthony Hopkins headline the remake of the classic The Bounty which gives audiences a taste of what this Irish actor can achieve in the upcoming decades.
Taken announced Neeson as a full-blown action hero in this smash from 2008. The actor is a retired CIA agent who travels across Europe in search of his kidnapped daughter. Neeson rocked in the action sequences and launched a new angle on his career that continued with The A-Team, Unknown and now The Grey.
7. Batman Begins
The first of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight series, Batman Begins featured Neeson as Henri Ducard, also known in the Caped Crusader world as Ra’s al Ghul. His Ducard character would become one of Batman’s strongest enemies, and was once his mentor. Ra’s al Ghul has one mission: Purifying the human race and returning the planet to a more pristine state. Simply seeing Neeson as a bad guy was one of many joys that is Batman Begins.
6. The Grey
Neeson is in full survival mode in the story of a group of Alaskan oil workers returning to Anchorage from their Arctic workplace. Their plane crashes, a few survive — including Neeson — and then they must face off against a pack of grey wolves who seek to kill each one of them. The film is a jam-packed thriller and features one of Neeson’s best performances to date. Don’t miss our exclusive video interview with Neeson about the film.
5. Gangs of New York
Neeson scored with his first opportunity to work with legendary director Martin Scorsese in his tale of Irish immigrants in New York City in the 1800s. Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz and Daniel Day-Lewis were the headliners and Neeson’s participation shows what a selfless actor he is in playing a smaller role that, because of his presence, elevates the entire film.
In Kinsey, Neeson does something he has done quite a bit: Portray a real-life person. With this 2004 biopic, the actor is Professor Alfred Kinsey, the author of 1948’s Sexual Behavior in the Human Male. Kinsey was way ahead of his time and in the hands of Neeson, the film is one fascinating look at an individual who is largely credited with changing some of our sexual and social mores.
3. Rob Roy
1995 saw Neeson tackle the historical figure Robert Roy McGregor. He was a 1700s Scottish hero whose battles with feudal landowners in the Highlands are the stuff of legend. The film is powerful, with some scenes even too hard to watch. In the hands of the actor, Roy is an in-charge individual, who is one part inspiration, one part historical catalyst and all Neeson at his best.
2. Michael Collins
The role of the real-life Michael Collins is especially close to Neeson’s heart as he is a fellow Irishman who fought for his people’s freedoms. Collins was integral into the effort to have the monarchy of the British Empire allow the people of Ireland their first, albeit small, forms of freedom. Collins is largely credited with bringing the idea of an Irish state into the consciousness of the larger world for the first time.
1. Schindler’s List
It is a quintessential role and Neeson’s best film… period. Steven Spielberg directed the actor in the true story of a German business owner who took on the Nazis by hiding Jews from their grasp and saving thousands of lives. When he noticed the persecution of his Jewish workers by the Nazis, Neeson’s Schindler could no longer sit idly by and in the process became one of World War II’s shining lights. The film won best picture, best director and could not have achieved such glory without the casting of Neeson as the titular saving soul.
How does one play a man who is capable of the most horrible of crimes? In One for the Money, Gavin-Keith Umeh is Benito Ramirez — the dastardly man at the center of the Katherine Heigl mystery. “One of the joys of being an actor is portraying a character that is so different from you. With this guy, I could just let it rip and be as scary as I can be and over the top,” Umeh told us exclusively.
There are so many minefields when it comes to portraying Ramirez. The fact he is less than joyous towards women is one. His downright scary intimidation of Stephanie Plum (Heigl), the central character beloved by millions of fans of Janet Evanovich’s books, is another. Then there’s how Umeh’s character treats the adored Sherri Sheppard’s Lulu in the One for the Money movie. “You don’t have to find ambiguity with him, there is none. It was nice to play an arch villain.”
Umeh is beyond thrilled that the film is premiering January 27. It’s been almost a year since he shot the flick and the swell of excitement by the millions of Evanovich fans has the actor’s excitement palpable. “It’s kind of a surreal experience because we wrapped quite some time ago. There’s this long build-up and so when it finally comes around, it’s like, ‘OK, this is actually happening.’ It’s starting to become very real for me. I can’t wait to see it,” Umeh said. “There’s the added dimension that the core audience of the book is awaiting it.”
When it comes to the Evanovich nation and their adoration of her main character Plum, Umeh found a fanatic close to home. “In the process of shooting the film, I found out that my aunt is a rabid follower of the Stephanie Plum novels. It was actually nice for me to get her feedback as I was filming because you want to keep those fans happy.”
The actor portrays Ramirez who is not only the film’s bad guy, but is someone who makes his living as a fighter. As a former amateur boxer, Umeh was ready for the part, but still had to refresh some of his skills to fully capture the fierce Ramirez. “I studied martial arts since my late teens. To that extent, I didn’t have to prepare,” he said. “But, because in the film he is specifically an MMA fighter, there were some components of that style of fighting that I wanted to brush up on.”
One of those whom Umeh’s character intimidates is Heigl’s Plum in a downright scary scene in an MMA cage. “She is such a lovely person,” he said of his co-star, who also is the film’s producer. “But, it is a really scary scene, both in the book and in the movie. I was initially very cautious. I didn’t want to be too scary.”
Heigl was clear to the actor that it was integral to the story for him to unleash his fury. “She told me to push it to make it work. Because she was also the producer, she could tell me what works and doesn’t, much more than if she was just playing Stephanie Plum. She told me to just let it go,” Umeh said. “She was a great sport about it.”
When tackling any page-to-screen effort, the actors must balance a tightrope of being true to the source material, while still bringing the film’s screenplay to life. “First and foremost, you have to rely on the books, not only because of the dedication the fans have to the book series and how much they care about it, but also because of the quality of the work — the type of characters and plotlines that Evanovich has put together. You want to stay true to that. However, as an actor, I went to the screenplay first,” Umeh said. “Then, after the screenplay, I went back to the book to flush out any additional things I could glean from the book. The book is a strong reservoir that you have, you have to use it.”
The elephant in the room is how the millions of Plum fans will react to One for the Money, not the least of which is Umeh’s aunt. “Anytime you work on a project where people know the characters before you do, you have to have a commitment to them. You have to feel the pressure,” he said. Umeh said that the cast and crew keenly knew this and took it seriously to heart. “You want to get it right and you want to bring their vision to life.”