You can go anywhere in the world and still recognize those two golden arches silhouetted against a solid red background. McDonald‘s is not only a name, it’s a brand. It’s one of the most renowned brands in the history of America, and by extension, the world. Despite the fact that we live in a post-Supersize Me society, McDonald’s is still one of the most daily-visited restaurants globally. In fact, McDonald’s has been around for so long that its name and label are now simply embedded in the American conscious. This weekend, however, fans of the fast-food-fav can see how it all began. Director John Lee Hancock’s The Founder is now playing in theaters nationwide. Starring Michael Keaton (Beetlejuice, Birdman), Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation, 22 Jump Street), John Carroll Lynch (Gran Torino, Crazy Stupid Love), Linda Cardellini (Grandma’s Boy, Avengers: Age of Ultron), BJ Novak (The Office, Inglorious Basterds), and Laura Dern (Jurassic Park, The Master), The Founder tells the tale of Ray Kroc, the passionate salesman who took the McDonald brothers’ small burger shack and turned it into the internationally known conglomerate we know today. Continue reading →
Warner Bros. Pictures has taken a potential new direction with their upcoming Pinocchio production with star Robert Downey Jr. (The Avengers, The Judge). Downey has been attached to the project for several years now, with various names like Ben Stiller being tossed around to direct. But now Warner Bros. is turning to Oscar-nominated filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood, The Master) to re-write the current script by Michael Mitnick with the aim at possibly directing as well. Paul Thomas Anderson writing a Pinocchio script is already pretty surprising, but given his impressive catalogue of work this may turn out to be a really great move! As far as the story goes, Downey is expected to appear as Geppetto, the woodworker who makes a boy puppet that miraculously comes to life, who sets out on a journey to reunite with his lost puppet. Nothing is confirmed yet, but let’s hope this one comes together. Stay tuned for more news.
Director David Koepp (Secret Window, Premium Rush) will see his latest film Mortdecai open in theaters this January 23rd. Starring Johnny Depp (Pirates of the Caribbean, Alice in Wonderland) as the title character, the movie is based on a series of novels by author Kyril Bonfiglioli titled Don’t Point That Thing At Me, following the fictional character Charlie Mortdecai. Portrayed as a comical, yet psychotic anti-hero in the novel, the movie follows Mortdecai as he searches for a stolen painting believed to contain the key to a lost Nazi bank account. Gwyneth Paltrow (Seven, Iron Man), Ewen McGregor (Big Fish, The Men Who Stare At Goats) and Paul Bettany (The DaVinci Code, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World) also star in the movie, which was adapted by screenwriter Eric Aronson (On The Line). Check out the trailer here on MADE, and I would at least consider giving this one a shot on the big screen. The novels received critical acclaim when they were released back in the 1970s, and the supporting cast seems strong enough to not have to rely entirely on Johnny Depp for the duration of the movie, but I leave the choice to you.
The latest project from acclaimed writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood, The Master) is opening in theaters this Friday, January 9th, and I think it will probably be one of the better releases since Interstellar back in November, give-or-take a few exceptions. Adapted by Anderson from the novel by Thomas Pynchon, the film follows outlandish private investigator Larry “Doc” Sportello across 1970s Los Angeles as he investigates the death of his ex-girlfriend. Joaquin Phoenix (Signs, Walk The Line) and Josh Brolin (No Country For Old Men, Men In Black 3) are leading the cast that also includes Owen Wilson, Reese Witherspoon, Martin Short, and Benicio Del Toro. Anderson’s last film, The Master, received three Academy Award nominations and three Golden Globe nominations, all for Best Actor (Joaquin Phoenix), Best Supporting Actor (Philip Seymour Hoffman), and Best Supporting Actress (Amy Adams), and before that, There Will Be Blood won two Oscars in 2008 for Best Actor (Daniel Day Lewis) and Best Cinematography (Robert Elswit), so needless to say, this director knows what he’s doing. Check out the trailer here on MADE, then seriously consider seeing this one on the big screen.
One of the first releases following the start of the new year will be director Paul Thomas Anderson‘s 1970s LA crime-noir drama Inherent Vice. Anderson, who is known for films like There Will Be Blood and The Master, adapted the screenplay from Thomas Pynchon‘s novel about a pot-smoking detective in Los Angeles who investigates the disappearance of a former lover. The film is lead by an all-star cast that includes Jena Malone (Pride & Prejudice, Into The Wild), Reese Witherspoon (Walk The Line, Mud), Owen Wilson (Wedding Crashers, Night at the Museum), Benicio Del Toro (The Usual Suspects, Snatch), Josh Brolin (No Country For Old Men, Men In Black 3), and Joaquin Phoenix (The Master, Her). The movie is scheduled to open in theaters on January 9, 2015. You can watch the trailer right here on MADE.
Director Paul Thomas Anderson is currently finishing production on his next film, Inherent Vice, which has now been given an official release date by Warner Bros. for this December 12th. The movie is based on the novel by Thomas Pynchon, which follows a pot-smoking detective in 1970s Los Angeles named Larry “Doc” Sportello, who probes the disappearance of an old girlfriend. The film stars Joaquin Phoenix in the role of Sportello, and has an all-star supporting cast that includes Benicio Del Toro, Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, and Martin Short. This will also be the third collaboration between Anderson and composer Jonny Greenwood, who worked on two of the director’s previous movies, There Will Be Blood (2007), and The Master (2012).
Many people may not be aware of Jonny Greenwood’s musical contributions outside of the English rock-band Radiohead, but the 42 year old musician is quickly becoming one of Hollywood’s hidden gems. Greenwood won a Grammy for his work on director Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood (2007), and also worked with the director on his more recent film, The Master (2012). Before working with Anderson, however, Greenwood’s music was featured in several big name motion pictures, including Children of Men (2006), Unfaithful (2002), Vanilla Sky (2001), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), and Romeo+Juliet (1996). Now Greenwood is also being contracted to score Anderson’s adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s Inherent Vice, which is scheduled for release sometime this year and which stars Jena Malone, Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Benicio Del Toro, and Martin Short. Although Anderson’s films have won (and received even more nominations) for the Oscars and Golden Globes, Greenwood’s work as a composer for the big screen has yet to be recognized by either film organization. Maybe this time he will get his big break, but either way his talents can no longer be overlooked by anyone in the film industry, even if Paul Anderson is the only filmmaker in Hollywood to let the musician work his magic. Stay tuned for more information on Inherent Vice.
Yesterday the film industry was struck by another terrible tragedy. Just two months following the sudden death of Paul Walker, Oscar winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead in his apartment in New York City yesterday from what is believed to be a drug overdose. The 46 year old actor leaves behind a legacy of characters including a spoiled prep student in Scent of a Woman, a mistrusted priest in Doubt, the Rock n Roll critic Lester Bangs in Almost Famous, the smart yet energetic clown Dusty in Twister, and the troubled writer Truman Capote in Bennett Miller’s oscar-winning biopic. Hoffman won an Oscar and Golden Globe for his portrayal of Truman Capote in 2006, and has been nominated for a total of four Oscars and four Globes for his roles in Doubt, Charlie Wilson’s War, The Savages, and his most recent picture, The Master in 2012. The actor has also played parts in Punch-Drunk Love, The Big Lebowski, Patch Adams, Along Came Polly, and Mission: Impossible 3. His most recent projects included two selections at this years Sundance Festival: A Most Wanted Man and God’s Pocket. The actor also played a part in the latest installment of The Hunger Games series, Catching Fire. The role is expected to be a part of the third film, so along with several other in-development roles Hoffman was expected to take, the studios/filmmakers will have to find other actors to take his place. Hoffman is succeeded by his three children, Cooper, Tallulah, and Willa with longtime girlfriend Mimi O’Donnell. Hoffman’s contribution to film, as well as his personal talent and admiration for his art will truly be missed in the future.