Monthly Archives: April 2016

“WARCRAFT: THE BEGINNING” UNLEASHES CHARACTER POSTERS

Warcraft Movie

Universal Pictures and Legendary Pictures have just unveiled eight character posters for “Warcraft: The Beginning,” the epic adventure of world-colliding conflict based on Blizzard Entertainment’s global phenomenon.

Warcraft Movie the Beginning

Getting individual one-sheets are Lothar, The War Hero; Durotan, Noble Orc Chief; Blackhand, The Destroyer; Orgrim, The Fighter; Garona, The Unbroken Survivor; Gul’dan, The Invader; King Llane, The Warrior King and Lady Taria, The Queen of Hope.

Warcraft Movie the Beginning

The studio has also announced a new and earlier release date in the Philippines – “Wacraft” will now launch on May 25 (from the previously announced June bow.)

In “Warcraft: The Beginning,” the peaceful realm of Azeroth stands on the brink of war as its civilization faces a fearsome race of invaders: Orc warriors fleeing their dying home to colonize another. As a portal opens to connect the two worlds, one army faces destruction and the other faces extinction. From opposing sides, two heroes are set on a collision course that will decide the fate of their family, their people and their home.

Warcraft Movie the Beginning

So begins a spectacular saga of power and sacrifice in which war has many faces, and everyone fights for something.

Directed by Duncan Jones (“Moon,” “Source Code”) and written by Charles Leavitt and Jones, the film stars Travis Fimmel, Paula Patton, Ben Foster, Dominic Cooper, Toby Kebbell, Ben Schnetzer, Rob Kazinsky and Daniel Wu.

Warcraft_Online_1-Sht_Blackhand_OV

Opening across the Philippines in May 25 2016, “Warcraft: The Beginning” will be distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

“ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY” TEASER TRAILER ARRIVES

Star Wars Rogue ONe

The brand new teaser trailer for “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” has just arrived and may be viewed at https://youtu.be/Wji-BZ0oCwg.

Lucasfilm’s “Rogue One,” which takes place before the events of “Star Wars: A New Hope,” tells the story of unlikely heroes who have united to steal plans to the dreaded Death Star.

The cast includes Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Jiang Wen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Riz Ahmed, and Forest Whitaker. “Rogue One” is directed by Gareth Edwards, produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Allison Shearmur, and Simon Emanuel, executive produced by John Knoll and Jason McGatlin, and co-produced by John Swartz and Kiri Hart.

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” opens across the Philippines on December 16, 2016 and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures through Columbia Pictures. Follow the official social media accounts of Star Wars in the Philippines, namely, (FB) StarWarsPH, (Twitter) @starwarsph and (Instagram) iamstarwars_ph.

JESSICA CHASTAIN, FIERCE WARRIOR IN “THE HUNTSMAN: WINTER’S WAR”

Jessica Chastain

Two-time Academy Award® nominee Jessica Chastain (“Zero Dark Thirty,” “The Martian”) has emerged as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actresses of her generation. Now, she stars opposite Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron and Emily Blunt in Universal Pictures’ fantasy adventure “The Huntsman: Winter’s War.”

Finding an actor of an equal caliber to play alongside Hemsworth as Sara, Eric the Huntsman’s true love, was perhaps the production’s greatest challenge. Indeed, a great warrior with a heart as true as Eric’s, Sara required an actress with true power. And Jessica Chastian fits the part brilliantly.

Sara finds it impossible to believe that Eric has remained true to her all these years apart, and refuses to forgive him for what she believes he once did. When she is left with no other choice, she joins him on an epic journey; but she’d just as soon take a knife to his throat as she would trust him again. “She’s trying to figure out if she’s worthy enough to be loved,” explains Chastain. “That’s a big hurdle for her, and she has a lot of trust issues to overcome.”

Chastain admits that she responded immediately to Sara’s journey. “I liked where she began and where she ended,” she states, “and I liked the secrets she holds. It was a character I’d never played before. I like the physicality, and I’ve done a lot of films that are dark and heavy, so I wanted to do something where I’m having a good time. This might be the most fun I’ve ever had.”

The approach to Chastain began at the London Critics’ Circle Film Awards. Hemsworth and Chastain share an agent, and Hemsworth pitched the character and promised to send a script. The actress’ first question, according to Hemsworth, was, “Do I get to kick ass in this movie?”

“She gets to kick a whole lot more butt in this than she’s done in the past,” Hemsworth confirms. “Most of my work in the film is with Jessica. She has a great sense of humor, and we had a good amount of banter back and forth. It was quite brotherly/sisterly at times. We wound each other up, and we had great fun.”

“Jessica brings a huge amount of variety,” says director Cedric Nicolas-Troyan. “Sara wasn’t a character she’d played before, but she gave her all. She wanted to do the training; she wanted to be ready. She came to set knowing those routines, and they are really out there. She spins, kicks and twists her blades, and she loved it. We had a great time filming those scenes together.”

For Chastain, having a director open enough to listen was essential. “I worried if you’re doing a big fantasy film, whether you might lose some of your own reality in it. Reality is the most important thing when I approach a character. But Cedric listened and inspired me, and he would say something that led my character in a new direction. When I asked a question he’d listen and build on that.”

The casting of Theron, Blunt and Chastain demonstrates the emphasis the filmmakers placed on writing strong, complex characters across the board, especially for women. “One of the main reasons I wanted to do the film, in addition to working with Chris, was that it showcased incredible parts for women,” says Chastain, who has long campaigned for more inclusive cinema. “I knew Charlize and Emily were attached when I got the script, and I’m tired of being the only woman on a set. Stories, even fantasy like this, should represent our world, and I was really, really pleased with the fabulous roles for women that were written into this film.”

Concludes Nicolas-Troyan: “This is a female-driven film, even more than the first one. The great thing about Jessica’s character is she doesn’t need saving by the Huntsman. They can be there for one another and kick ass together, but they’re as strong as each other…and stronger together.”

Opening across the Philippines on April 13, “The Huntsman: Winter’s War” is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

ADRENALINE RUSH IN INSPIRING REVOLUTIONARY DANCE MOVIE “HIGH STRUNG”

nicolas galitzine and keenan kampa HIGH STRUNG

A hip hop violinist meets a ballerina in the high-energy dance movie “High Strung” where two misfits didn’t belong until they believed in each other and go head to head against the best of the best in the Manhattan Conservatory of Arts Peterson Dance contest.

Ruby (Keenan Kampa), a lovely ballet dancer on scholarship who doesn’t seem to fit and Johnnie (Nicolas Galitzine), a British musician playing for money in the subway tunnels finally meet and find harmony to achieve their dreams.    Ruby’s world is classical and disciplined; Johnnie’s is improvisational and street smart. When a hip-hop battle gone wrong throws these two artists together, they immediately clash but can’t deny it when sparks begin to fly. Their lives quickly get entangled in the pitfalls that come with competing in New York City. With the help of a dynamic dance crew called The SwitchSteps, Ruby and Johnnie must find a way to save Ruby’s scholarship and keep Johnnie from being deported. In an action-packed extravaganza combining cutting edge hip-hop with contemporary and classical dance, the two must navigate their opposing worlds and prepare for a competition where winning or losing will change their lives forever.

Starring two of the most promising actors, the breathtakingly talented and world class dancer Keenan Kampa (Russia’s Mariinsky Ballet’s first American dancer) and Nicholas Galitzine (“The Beat Beneath My Feet”) alongside 62 of some of the World’s most exciting and original dancers from London, Paris, L.A. and New York, “High Strung” is a powerful movie that celebrates dance, music and the boundless optimism and energy of youth, hits all of the right notes and makes all of the right moves.

Top-notch choreographer Dave Scott supervised “High Strung’s” moves into a perfect fruition.  Scott managed to meet the demands of the numerous dance genres required in “High Strung” from which he draws his inspiration from the highly-successful dance movie’s he’s also choreographed such as “Step up 2: The Streets,” “Stomp the Yard,” “So You Think You Can Dance” and “Dancing with the Stars.”

Dave, director Michael Damian with his wife Janeen went on to hold auditions in Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris and Bucharest. “We wanted to make a dance film that would represent multiple genres of dance: not just hip hop, but also ballet, contemporary, tango, and even Irish step dance,” Michael adds. In all, they found 62 dancers to complete their cast. “Everywhere we went, the hip hop talent was so strong we had a tough time choosing,” Janeen adds. “But it was also very important to us to get the ballet right, which proved much more challenging.”

In a decade when the public appetite for dance and dance programming has enjoyed great resurgence, the timing was right to make to “High Strung.” “Dance has become huge worldwide,” Michael observes, adding, “It’s an international language that crosses all the borders and boundaries.” However, by bringing together music, classical ballet and hard hitting hip hop in a story of both romance and struggle that reaches a heart-stopping crescendo, the Damians have achieved even more than they’d dreamed. “We hope that the film will inspire young people to work hard, do their best, and believe in themselves,” they conclude. “Even if you don’t succeed as a dancer or musician, what you learn through the arts can be carried with you in whatever you do in life.”

“High Strung” is elevated by standout supporting performances from veteran actors Jane Seymour, Paul Freeman and Maia Morgenstern and features an original soundtrack of boundary-breaking commercial tracks blending various styles of music.

“High Strung” opens in cinemas this April 20 from Pioneer Films.  Trailer link:https://youtu.be/o4UNNDsDGe4

TERROR TICKS AS ANOTHER BOMB THREATENS TO EXPLODE ON “BASTILLE DAY”

BASTILLE DAY

Timely as today’s major concerns on battling terrorism comes the riveting action film “Bastille Day” based on true events starring Idris Elba and Richard Madden out to stop a series of bomb attacks in Paris.

In “Bastille Day,” Michael Mason (Richard Madden from ‘Game of Thrones’) is an American pickpocket living in Paris who finds himself hunted by the CIA when he steals a bag that contains more than just a wallet. Sean Briar (Idris Elba from ‘Luther’ and “Prometheus’), the field agent on the case, soon realizes that Michael is just a pawn in a much bigger game and is also his best asset to uncover a large-scale conspiracy.

Going against commands, Briar recruits Michael to use his expert pickpocketing skills to help quickly track down the source of the corruption. As a 24hr thrill ride ensues, the unlikely duo discover they are both targets and must rely upon each other in order to take down a common enemy.

“Bastille Day” is a story with buried layers – personal, action, and geopolitical – and, even though it’s a very, very fast paced action thriller, it does touch on the anger that a lot of people have in terms of feeling disenfranchised from the political process. You see it in London, you see it in Paris, and it is a big theme in the plot because the bad guys exploit it. As Michael demonstrates to Briar, we live in a world of sleight-of-hand where ‘it’s all about the distraction.’

Taking the lead is Idris Elba as Sean Briar, the CIA operative who has been confined to a desk job in Paris after a mission in the Middle East went wrong.  Elba describes Sean Briar as “a CIA veteran, he’s been around for a long time and the posting in Paris is a step down for him after the high profile covert work he was doing before. He’s an army guy who just wants to get the job done and go home. His boss, Karen, instructs him to go and get Michael, who’s the prime suspect in the bombing, but Briar believes that there’s more to the story than that. So he has to follow his hunch even though he’s disobeying orders. These two characters – Briar, and Michael- make for an unlikely duo of heroes. They’re thrown into and are forced to team up and navigate their way through the twists and turns of the impending catastrophe. It’s not just action for action’s sake. It’s an action-packed film; but at the heart, there are characters that you care about and there’s a very compelling storyline. “Bastille Day” feels unique and modern, because it’s a European take on an action film.”

One of the most visually impressive and logistically challenging set pieces is the rooftop chase at the beginning of the film featuring Idris Elba’s character, Sean Briar, and Richard Madden’s character, Michael Mason. The chase starts in Michael’s apartment, moves out and up to the rooftops of Paris and then plummets into the hustle and bustle of a crowded market.

The actors did most of the stunt work, including the fight scenes. Not having to cut between the actors and stuntmen was a way of keeping the film grounded in reality. Stunt coordinator Jimmy O’Dee worked for several weeks with the actors, preparing them for the scene.  “Jimmy O’Dee was really specific about being fit,” says Elba. “I’ve never done a film with so many fight sequences before, and I loved it. I have a little martial arts training so it was great fun for me to exercise some of my knowledge. I think the film definitely attempts to be as raw in the fight sequences as we can get. Scrappy was the word I kept hearing. I mean it really feels like you’re in there.”

Join the war against terrorism when “Bastille Day” opens April 20 in theatres nationwide from Axinite Digicinema.