Tag Archives: universal

Will Disney’s Bid For Fox Properties Mean Another Monopoly For The Cable Industry?

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Walt Disney Pictures has come a long way from making full-length animated features like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, and Peter Pan. In the 21st century, the company has reinvented itself with live-action blockbusters like Pirates of the Caribbean, state-of-the-art computer animated films like Cars and Frozen, and adaptations of children’s literary classics like Roald Dahl’s The BFG and Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time (out in theaters this March). In recent years, Disney has expanded into more lucrative markets like comic book blockbusters (ie. Marvel comics) and, of course, the Star Wars franchise. The latest Star Wars entry, The Last Jedi, hit the $1 billion mark in worldwide box office sales barely three weeks after its US theatrical release. With a plethora of material to work with, and plenty of money coming in, one would think Disney is far passed its tipping point, but that might not be the case at all. Continue reading

Movie News/Independent Highlight

This week will see a number of indie projects open on select screens across the country. We mentioned the Kristen Stewart (Twilight, Snow White and the Huntsmen) drama Equals opening this Friday, about a couple who falls in love as the result of a disease in a futuristic utopia that is devoid of feeling and emotion, and the tension it causes between them and their society. Co-starring with Stewart is Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury Road, X-Men: Apocalypse), who are led by director Drake Doremus (Like Crazy, Breathe In).

Also opening on the indie circuit this week is a new animated movie called Phantom Boy, which takes place in the 1940s-50s and follows a young boy with superpowers who helps a wheelchair-bound policeman in his efforts to take down a notorious mob boss. The film comes from Oscar-nominated filmmakers Loup Felicioli & Alain Gagnol (A Cat in Paris) and stars French actors Edouard Baer (Chicken with Plums), Jean-Pierre Marielle (Coup de torchon, The DaVinci Code), and Audrey Tautou (A Very Long Engagement, Amelie).

Finally on the indie film circuit for this week is a new comedy called Undrafted Continue reading

Original N.W.A Line-Up Reuniting For Tour With Special Guest Eminem


With their biographical film Straight Outta Compton opening in theaters this August 14th, the iconic rap group N.W.A. is looking to their next project, and with the anticipation of the movie, fans have been hoping for a potential reunion concert or even a tour. Well now it seems that a tour is definitely being planned, at least a European tour (sorry America!), according to chairperson Donna Langley at Universal Studios, who is releasing the film. The tour would include original members Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, and DJ Yella, as well as honorary rapper Eminem, who will presumably serve in place of Eazy-E, who died in 1995. No tour official tour dates or locations have been announced, but we’ll keep an eye out for additional news. The trailer for Straight Outta Compton is available here on MADE. Stay tuned!

Universal Pictures Signs Tyrese Gibson To Lead Role In ‘Desert Eagle’

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Tyrese Gibson in Fast Five (2011).

Actor/rapper Tyrese Gibson will be seen in theaters this April in Furious 7, but news of the actor’s future projects has recently come from Deadline by way of an action script written by himself and Mike Le titled Desert Eagle. Universal Pictures has now agreed to cast Gibson in the lead role and has brought on writing duo Mike Stuecken (The Tower of Babble, Valencia) and Josh Campbell (Snabba Cash-in development) to re-write Gibson and Le’s original script, following a pair of border patrol agents as they investigate a Native American casino believed to be a front/headquarters for a drug cartel. Universal will have to wait for the script before they can take the project much further into development, but considering a director needs to be found and the cast filled out, producer Scott Stuber (Ted, Identity Thief) will have plenty on his plate in the months to come. Stay tuned.

Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne, And Zac Efron Returning For ‘Neighbors 2’ Summer 2016

Universal Pictures has announced that a sequel to their worldwide box-office hit Neighbors has been given a green-light and has been set for release on May 13th, 2016. The sequel will bring back original cast members Seth Rogen (Knocked Up, The Interview), Rose Byrne (X-Men:First Class, Get Him To The Greek), and Zac Efron (Parkland, That Awkward Moment), as well as director Nicholas Stoller (Forgetting Sarah Marshall, The Five-Year Engagement) and original writers Andrew Jay Cohen and Brendan O’Brien, who thus far will only serve as executive producers. The project is still early in production, and a script or even a screenwriter has yet to be found, but I’m sure many would just as soon not see a sequel made at all. Given the context and originality of the first film it’s going to be difficult to come up with a sequel that’s actually worth making, but if Universal thinks they can rake in another $250 million by making a sequel, then that’s exactly what they’ll do. Stay tuned.

Production On New Steve Jobs Biopic Begins In Apple Founder’s Original Garage

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Steve Jobs (right) and Steve Wozniak (left) in Los Altos, CA, 1976.

Since being picked up by Universal Pictures, the new biopic of Apple founder Steve Jobs is starting to gain momentum, with production already getting underway in Silicon Valley, CA. Written by Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network, Moneyball) and starring Michael Fassbender (X-Men:First Class, 12 Years A Slave) as Steve Jobs and Seth Rogen (Superbad, The Interview) in the role of Steve Wozniak, the story chronicles several high-points in the co-founders’ careers, beginning with the 1984 Macintosh computer and spanning all the way to the iPod in 2001. Production has already begun at Steve Jobs’ old garage in Los Altos, where he and Wozniak co-founded Apple in 1976. Director Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, Slumdog Millionaire) is sitting behind the camera for the project, which also features Katherine Waterson (Michael Clayton, Inherent Vice), Kate Winslet (Titanic, The Life of David Gale), Michael Stuhlbarg (Hugo, Men in Black 3), and Jeff Daniels (Speed, Dumb and Dumber To) in the supporting cast. Stay tuned for more news.

Next Bourne Installment Moved Up To Summer 2016 Release In Place Of ‘Apes 3’

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Twentieth Century Fox recently moved their upcoming sequel to Dawn of the Planet of the Apes from July 2016 to the next July in 2017. With this move, the vacated release-spot has been filled by Universal Pictures, moving their upcoming Jason Bourne sequel that will reunite Matt Damon (The Departed, Interstellar) with director Paul Greengrass (Green Zone, Captain Phillips) into this date instead. This will push the Bourne release back by a couple of weeks, but also provide virtually no competition for that opening weekend, so it could turn out to be a really profitable switch. Damon and Greengrass are currently writing the screenplay for the film with producer Christopher Rouse, but there is no word yet as to whether or not the movie will follow the previous installment, The Bourne Legacy, with series newcomer Jeremy Renner (The Avengers, American Hustle). The Bourne Legacy was directed by series screenwriter Tony Gilroy, taking over for Greengrass who directed Damon in both the preceding movies The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), but now Greengrass is back on board to direct and Gilroy has, as of now, fallen away from the series. Stay tuned for more news.

Casting Updates On Upcoming Steve Jobs Biopic From Director Danny Boyle

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Steve Jobs (left) and Steve Wozniak (right) in 1976.

Since director Danny Boyle‘s new Steve Jobs project was picked up by Universal Pictures, some new changes have been made to the supporting cast. Michael Fassbender (12 Years A Slave, X-Men: Days of Future Past) is still set to lead the film as the Apple co-founder, and Seth Rogen (Pineapple Express, This Is The End) is attached to star as co-founder Steve Wozniak, but Natalie Portman has unfortunately dropped out of the film. Since Portman has decided to leave, screenwriter Aaron Sorkin (A Few Good Men, The Social Network) is looking to fill the remainder of the supporting cast, including the role of Apple CEO John Sculley. News from Deadline indicates that his top contender for that role is The Newsroom‘s Jeff Daniels, but an official contract has yet to be drawn up. We’ll keep an eye out for a final cast list.

Universal Picks Up Danny Boyle’s Steve Jobs Biopic With Michael Fassbender

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Having been dropped from development at Sony Pictures, director Danny Boyle‘s upcoming Steve Jobs biopic from screenwriter Aaron Sorkin has now been picked up by Universal Pictures for $30 million. Michael Fassbender is attached to lead the film and now Natalie Portman is in talks to take an unknown major role in the movie. The script will follow a sixteen year span that sees the release of three major apple projects, and according to Sorkin will largely incorporate material from seven other major characters like John Sculley and Joanna Hoffman. With the supporting cast beginning to be filled in, and a major distributor backing the project, we should see production start to pick up on this one. As to how excited audiences will be for another Steve Jobs movie? That’s anybody’s guess, really.

Watch The New Trailer For ‘Avengers: Age Of Ultron’


With all the news about upcoming comic-book movie releases that Warner Bros. and Universal have been putting out lately, a lot of attention seems to have diverted away from a sequel that is actually coming out this summer! Avengers: Age of Ultron is scheduled to open in theaters on May 1, 2015 and will see the cast of the original Avengers reunited on screen. Included from the original cast are Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, and Samuel L. Jackson, with Cobie Smulders returning as Maria Hill and newcomers Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen joining the cast as well. The film is written and directed by Joss Whedon, who also wrote and directed the original Avengers, and who is also behind the ongoing television show Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D. on ABC. Check out the new trailer here on MADE!