John Henry is a folk hero who’s best known for wielding a hammer, and just on sheer physical presence alone, Terry Crews should be the perfect person to play a modern day version of the legend.
Directed by Will Forbes, John Henry centers on the titular character (Crews), a former gang member who is now living a more sedate life caring for his father (Ken Foree). When two immigrants running from his former gang leader (Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges) come across his way, Henry must decide whether or not to put his own life on the line. Check out the trailer and tell us what you think!
John Henry hits theaters and On Demand on January 24.
1917 centers on Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman), two British soldiers who are tasked with going through enemy lines and delivering a message to stop a possible ambush on an estimated 1600 soldiers (one of who is Blake’s brother).
Director Sam Mendes wanted to avoid tons of cuts in his film and present his story as one single take, thus giving the audience a seamless storytelling experience.
“There were so many scenes that I just completely got lost in,” said Chapman. “And when they called ‘cut’ I would completely forget who I was, and I was Blake. “There were scenes that were sometimes were six minutes long and doing that was a real honor. I learned so much about the character, about me, and a lot about filmmaking.”
Click on the media bar to hear Chapman talk about the research he did from the film:
1917 opens in limited release on Christmas Day and then heads for a wider release on January 10.
Director/actor Danny A. Abeckaser has had a creatively fulfilling 2019. Along with his latest feature Mob Town, Abeckaser also had a co-starring role in The Irishman.
Mob Town is a fact based story of state trooper Ed Croswell’s (David Arquette) discovery of a huge mob meeting that took place in Apalachin, New York. Abeckaser, along with directing the feature, stars as Joe Barbara, the mobster whose spacious home serves as the venue.
“I love gangster movies,” said Abeckaser, whose debut feature was last year’s First We Take Brooklyn. “I just directed another movie about a basketball player and it has nothing to do with (gangster films). I love those kind of movies and characters. If the story is right, I’d love to do it. I still think I have my one big gangster movie that I would love to do and showcase it, but I’m just attracted to good stories and scripts. I love telling stories about real people. Working with Martin Scorsese as an actor was a dream come true. Watching him on set and directing me with Robert De Niro and those guys. I learned so much from him as a director.”
Click on the media bar to hear Abeckaser talk about the challenges of directing and starring in Mob Town:
Mob Town, co-starring Jennifer Esposito and Robert Davi, is now out in theaters and is available on VOD and Digital HD.
Directed by Jeff Chan, Code 8centers on a superhuman named Connor (Robbie Amell) who is lured into crime as a way to pay his dying mother’s (Kari Matchett) medical bills. Stephen Amell (Robbie’s cousin) co-stars as Garrett the leader of a crew who brings Connor into the fold.
The picture started out as a 2016 short and thanks to a successful Indiegogo campaign, Code 8 became a reality. “It’s been a long journey but it’s been my favorite work experience of my life. To get to shoot with friends and family right from the beginning … the only reason the movie looks and feels as big as it is because the amount of sweat equity that all of our friends and family put in,” said Amell. “Everyone that worked in the project should have been working on a bigger project and getting paid more. They really cared about what we were making and they really wanted to make something special. We didn’t have a bad day on set – even when things went wrong and we had to put out fires, we were doing them with friends.”
Click on the media bar to hear Amell talk about the advantages of how the Indiegogo campaign has a positive influence on the production:
Code 8 is now playing in theaters and is available On Demand.
Jumanji: The Next Level was expected to be the #1 film at the box office, and its $60.1 million placed it firmly at the top over second place Frozen 2($19.2 million). The big surprise, however, was it easily surpassed Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle’s $36 million debut back in 2017! Here’s the top 10:
Jumanji: The Next Level – Feature takes in $60.1 million.
Frozen 2– To date, the film has made over $366 million. This weekend it collects $19.1 million.
Knives Out– Murder mystery flick rakes in $9.2 million.
Richard Jewell– Clint Eastwood’s latest film makes $5 million.
Black Christmas – Horror feature debuts $4.4 million.
Ford v Ferrari – Racing movie collects $4.1 million.
Queen & Slim – Drama grosses $3.6 million.
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood– Tom Hanks received critical acclaim for his work as Mister Rogers, and this weekend the drama took in $3.4 million.
Dark Waters – Mark Ruffalo feature collects $2 million.
One of this year’s most anticipated films is Little Women, director Greta Gerwig’s follow up to her acclaimed 2017 feature Lady Bird. The feature reunites her with Lady Bird lead Saoirse Ronan, who plays the strong willed and talented Jo March.
Little Women has seen its share of cinematic versions over the years, and the 1994 installment, directed by Gillian Armstrong, featured Winona Ryder in the Jo March role. Gerwig’s feature has drawn its share of accolades, as it received 9 Critics’ Choice nominations (including for Best Picture, Best Actress, and Best Ensemble.
Click on the media bar to hear Ronan talk about the “well rounded” characterizations that are an important element of Gerwig’s film:
Little Women, co-starring Florence Pugh and Emma Watson, hits theaters Christmas Day.