It’s been 24 years since the original Toy Story opened, and many of the young kids who made that movie popular now have kids of their own. Undoubtedly, many of those kids (and their kids) have watched the first three movies in the franchise countless times on home video and can’t wait to see the new Toy Story 4. When the third installment was released in 2010, it was widely reported that it would be the last Toy Story film, since it wrapped up the story of Woody and Buzz so well. So, in a way, the new film feels like a rebirth. How will it be different from the first three? We asked the voice of Woody, Tom Hanks, to tell us what we can expect from the movie. (Click on the media bar below to hear Tom Hanks)
Back in the year 2000, Samuel L. Jackson was overjoyed to be resurrecting the Shaft franchise, which had started in the 1970s with three movies and a TV series. In that film, Jackson played John Shaft II, the nephew of the original Shaft (Richard Roundtree). Of course, he’d hoped for a sequel, and now he’s finally getting one! The new Shaft introduces a third-generation Shaft (JJ Shaft Jr., Jackson’s son) and winds up getting all three Shafts in on the action. Jackson also worked with Roundtree in the 2000 film, and Jackson gives him a lot of credit for turning the character — and the franchise — into the very definition of cool. (Click on the media bar below to hear Samuel L. Jackson)
It’s just not enough for Ed Sheeran to be one of the world’s most popular pop stars anymore — now, he’s making his way into the film realm. After a few bit parts on some TV shows, including a brief appearance in the final season of Game of Thrones, Sheeran is featured in the new Richard Curtis/Danny Boyle movie Yesterday, about a world in which only one person remembers the music of the Beatles. The concept of the movie intrigued Sheeran, and he was excited to sign on. (Click on the media bar below to hear Ed Sheeran)
Brad Pitt had designs on starring in director James Gray’s The Lost City of Z, and although the role eventually went to Charlie Hunnam, Pitt remained on board as an executive producer.
Pitt is back on another Gray project, this time in front of the camera, in the sci-fi epic Ad Astra. The picture centers on Rory McBride (Pitt), an astronaut who goes on the search for his father (Tommy Lee Jones), who disappeared two decades ago looking for life on Neptune.
Gray has likened Ad Astra’s narrative to the Joseph Conrad novel Heart of Darkness, a tale which inspired filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now. Coincidentally Gray actually turned to Coppola for advice as he pondered whether or not to make The Lost City of Z, so one wonders how much of an imprint Conrad and Coppola will have on Ad Astra.
Check out the trailer below and tell us what you think!
Penned by Michael and Lily Idov, Letois a wistful and seductive look at the relationship between a young Viktor Tsoi (Teo Yoo) and musician Mike Naumenko (Roman Bilyk). Mike, a more seasoned artist, believes in and nurtures Viktor’s potential. When Mike’s partner Natasha (Irina Starshenbaum) becomes smitten with Viktor, Mike stands aside and lets nature take its course, and a love triangle begins.
“We wanted to tell the story of love and friendship and youth and this slightly misguided energy of youth that could have taken place in the U.S. in 1960s or the UK in the 1970s,” said Michael Idov. “It happened to benefit from being set in the Soviet Union in the 1980s, it wasn’t our intention to just be a deep dive into what it was like in the pre-perestroika Soviet Union.”
“We were trying to capture that moment in time when people find their freedom from music and, as Michael said, that could happen in a different place and time,” added Lily Idov.
The picture, shot in black and white, is a visually arresting narrative that is both a coming of age story and a musical. Click on the media bar to hear Michael Idov talk about how director Kirill Serebrennikov transformed their original script into more of a musical fantasy.
Leto, based on Natalya Naumenko’s memoirs, opens in New York on June 7 and his Los Angeles on June 21.
In celebration of its 35th anniversary, Gremlins will be released on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack and Digital on October 1 via Warner Bros. Entertainment. This will be the first time Gremlins will be released in 4K resolution with high dynamic range (HDR).
Helmed by Innerspace filmmaker Joe Dante and penned by Home Alone’sChris Columbus, the tale centers on a youth named Billy Peltzer (Zach Galligan) whose new pet Gizmo (voiced by Howie Mandel) multiplies into more mischievous iterations after Billy makes some fateful mistakes. The ensemble includes Phoebe Cates and Hoyt Axton.
Special features on the Blu-ray (these extras were available on a previous Gremlins release) include two commentaries, a behind the scenes along with several more featurettes, photo gallery, theatrical trailers, additional scenes,
Are you excited about the Gremlins 35th anniversary release? Feel free to comment below!