Academy Award winners Ron Howard and Tom Hanks have made many successful films together. Going back to 1984 with the comedy hit Splash, the pair have continued to work together over the years. Howard has also directed Hanks in Apollo 13, The Da Vinci Code, and Angels and Demons. Now you can add another film to the list with Inferno. the third film in author Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon series.
Not many duos in film history have been as successful as their partnership. Over three decades from when they first worked on Splash, Howard says working with Hanks is still a pleasure to work with and together they make a perfect team.
Inferno opens in theaters October 28.
For the past few years, the live musical of Broadway shows has been revitalized. Musicals such as The Sound of Music, Peter Pan and The Wiz, which all aired on NBC, has recaptured the magic of not only great Broadway musicals, but the excitement of live television. NBC is hard at work for what might be the best musical we have seen yet as Hairspray Live airs December 7.
The musical features Harvey Fierstein reprising the role of Edna Turnblad, which he originated in the Broadway musical and earned him a Tony Award. Co-starring with Fierstein is Emmy and Tony award winner Kristen Chenoweth, Academy award winner Jennifer Hudson, Martin Short, Sean Hayes, Rosie O’Donnell, Derek Hough, and music superstar Ariana Grande.
Before becoming one of the biggest popstars in the world, Grande got her start on Broadway in the musical 13. With all that she has accomplished in her young career, starring in Hairspray Live might be the biggest accomplishment yet. She told us that getting the chance to star in the show was something that she didn’t know would happen and she is in awe of working with Kristen Chenoweth and Harvey Fierstein. Grande also adds that she is a Broadway geek. (Click on the media bar below to hear Ariana Grande)
John Travolta is no stranger to playing hard working, self sacrificing workers (Ladder 49), and now he plays Beau, the head lineman in the upcoming feature Life on the Line.
Beau comes from a family of linemen, unsung heroes who keep the electric grid running and people safe through even the worst of storms. Haunted by the death of his brother, Beau is determined to see his niece (Kate Bosworth) go to college and leave the linemen environment behind. A deadly tempest headed to their Texas town derails their plans, and it’s up to Beau and his crew (one of which is played by Devon Sawa) to save the day. The film co-stars Sharon Stone, Julie Benz, and Gil Bellows.
Though it may take me a good New York minute to acclimate to John Travolta’s accent, Life on the Line has the makings of a solid action thriller. Check out the trailer below and tell us what you think!
Life on the Line hits theaters and On Demand November 18.
Now playing in select theaters, Desierto centers on a vigilante (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) who, along with his dog, hunts down and kills men and women who are trying to cross the U.S. Mexican border.
Inspired by such films as A Man Escaped, Runaway Train, and Duel, Jonás Cuarón directs a nail biting thriller which absolutely works as a visceral experience. The project, however, also carries a deeper theme about migration.
“What we wanted to highlight perhaps is the ridiculousness of it all,” said Bernal. “How did we get there? How did we get to this place? And to open up a new discussion that actually talks about and understands migration as a phenomenon. It needs to exist for humans to exist on Earth. Instead of criminalizing it, we should talk about regulating it . . . we are just criminalizing the wrong people all the time.”
Click on the media bar and listen to Gael Garcia Bernal and Jeffrey Dean Morgan talk about the cinematic challenges and joy behind shooting Desierto:
Gamers who are passionate about retro pixel art should turn their attention to Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King, a nostalgic and epic adventure which centers on a heroine’s quest to save a kingdom from eternal darkness. The title, from publisher FDG Entertainment, promises over 15 hours of gameplay and features puzzle solving and combat elements. This top down action genre, at its best, also contains witty dialogue and an arresting music score, and judging from the trailer, the game has potential.
What peaks my interest about the title is that although a part of its aesthetic is steeped in nostalgia, the game will not be entirely tied down to the past.
“With Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King, our mission was to make the game we want to play,” said FDG Entertainment owner Philipp Döschl. “We are huge Zelda fans and particularly love the 2D, top-down games on the SNES and Nintendo handhelds. We also wanted to streamline and modernize certain aspects to fit in with our tastes and the expectations gamers have today. Our goal was to make the game we remember playing it, not how it actually was!”
As Lily, aka the Knight of the Rose, gamers will explore four dungeons all of which have a distinctly different color palette. One key to keep action platformers from becoming too repetitive is to give players a distinctly different visual look as much as possible while staying true to the game’s creative intent and style. Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King comes out on PC via Steam early next year, and hopefully this title delivers the goods.
Check out the trailer below and tell us if you think the 16-bit game Blossom Tales: The Sleeping King, which was developed by Castle Pixel Studios, is a promising title!
There’s a reason why we often dub our reality as our “waking life,” as dreams, even if they are embedded deep within our subconscious, play an important element in our existence. The new USA Network series Falling Water explores that very concept, as three seemingly disparate individuals (Will Yun Lee, Lizzie Brocheré, David Ajala) gradually realize their dreams have a direct repercussions on their journey.
“You have three broken characters characters who go into their dream for some kind of escape,” said Yun Lee. “But then find answers that bring them closer to something that happens during the course of the show that ties them together and (with the realization that) the dream world is real. It’s just on the other side of the waterfall.”
“The base of the show is the idea that we’re all connected in our dreams,” adds Brocheré. “We’re all dreaming one part of a big eye cloud - a collective unconscious dream.”
Click on the media bar to hear Lizzie Brocheré and Will Yun-Lee talk about the importance of dreams and how it affects their own lives:
Falling Water airs Thursday evenings on USA Network (10 pm et/pt).
The Comedy Central animated series South Park has been a part of our pop culture for 20 years. South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker are as hands on today with the series as they were when they first started. Unlike many other animated television shows which takes a year to make a season’s worth of episodes, a new installment of South Park can be made in a few weeks. If something topical happens, Stone and Parker can make changes even a day before the episode airs. We spoke to the prolific duo and they gave us insight into how quickly an episode and a season of South Park come together. (Click on the media bar below to hear Matt Stone & Trey Parker)
South Park airs Wednesday nights 10/9c on Comedy Central.
The great Dame Angela Lansbury just turned 91 years old and continues to amaze. Throughout her great career she has won six Tony Awards, having originated roles in such legendary Broadway shows as Mame, Sweeney Todd and Gypsy. She’s also had an illustrious film career which included three Oscar nominations. The Academy of Motion Pictures and Science presented her an Honorary Academy Award in 2014 for crafting some of cinema’s most memorable characters and inspiring generations of actors.
Newer generations recognize her as the voice of Mrs. Potts, from 1991’s beloved Disney animated film Beauty and the Beast. And of course, she’s also known as whip smart mystery author Jessica Fletcher on Murder She Wrote, a show which ran for 12 seasons on CBS. A whole new generation of fans are falling in love with the series, which is now streaming on Netflix.
Murder She Wrote made Lansbury one of the most beloved television stars and a show that audiences fell in love with. A few years back we spoke to Lansbury who told us Murder She Wrote made her a worldwide star. It’s something she will always be thankful for and she added that once she was done with the series she couldn’t wait to get back to Broadway. (Click on the media bar below to hear Angela Lansbury)
Don’t Breathe, a $9 million budgeted thriller which scared up over $147 million worldwide, hits Blu-ray and November 29 via Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
Directed by Fede Alvarez (Evil Dead), the plot centers on three young thieves (Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette, Daniel Zovatto) who break into the Detroit home of a blind man (Stephen Lang). Though they believed the operation would go off without a hitch, their “victim” turns out to be a highly resourceful and violent man. The picture, which evokes the nerve-wracking tension of the first rate Audrey Hepburn thriller Wait Until Dark, features Sam Raimi as one of the producers.
The Blu-ray and DVD special features include deleted scenes with director’s commentary, commentary with Alvarez, Lang, and co-writer Rodo Sayagues, and five featurettes (”No Escape,” “Creating the Creepy House,” “Meet the Cast,” “Man in the Dark,” and “The Sounds of Horror”).
To check out our review of Don’t Breathe, take a listen to a past episode of CinemAddicts below:
Bestselling author, actor, and producer Penn Jillette will host the first ever Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards, which takes place Thursday, November 3 at BRIC (Brooklyn, New York).
Along with being part of the duo Penn & Teller, Jillette also produced the documentaries The Aristocrats and Tim’s Vermeer. The Showtime series Penn & Teller: BS!, which was nominated for 13 Emmys, aired for eight seasons.
“I’m very excited about hosting the Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards,” said Jillette, who also starred in the Arthur Penn directed drama Penn & Teller Get Killed. “Because the stuff people make up can never be as scary, spooky, wonderful, and weird as the stuff that’s really out there. I love my docs.”
Presenters at the event include Andrew Jarecki (The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst), Oscar winner Barbara Kopple (Miss Sharon Jones!), and journalist/documentary producer Meredith Vieira. Lifelong collaborators D.A. Pennebaker (Bob Dylan: Don’t Look Back) and Chris Hegedus (Startup.com) will be honored with Critics’ Choice Lifetime Achievement Awards.