Paramount Unveils First Footage of Horror Movie Crawl at CinemaCon

Paramount unveils the first footage for Crawl at CinemaCon. The new horror film is directed by acclaimed French filmmaker Alexandre Aja, one of the leading figures of the New French Extremity movement. In May 2018, Sam Raimi signed on to co-produce Crawl.

Crawl stars English actress Kaya Scodelario as Haley Keller, a woman who is trapped in a house during a hurricane, and tries to fend off baddies. In a co-starring role, Canadian actor Barry Pepper portrays Dave Keller. In 2018, the two were part of the main cast for Wes Ball’s Maze Runner: The Death Cure, the final chapter of a dystopian science fiction film trilogy. Scodelario began her career by portraying Effy Stonem on the British teen comedy Skins, while Pepper is a noted character actor with a film and television resume that dates back 25 years. For his performance as Robert F. Kennedy on the 2011 miniseries The Kennedys, Pepper won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor. 

Related: Sonic the Hedgehog CinemaCon Footage Highlights Jim Carrey’s Robotnik

At CinemaCon, Screen Rant’s own Rob Keyes caught a glimpse of Crawl’s first footage. In the footage, Pepper and Scodelario portray a father and daughter who enter a dark house during a hurricane, this coming after they drive around with a dog in a car. In the house’s basement, Scodelario’s character loses her father, only to find him laying down and almost dead. She hears a mysterious sound, and a monster then pulls her away. Next, she’s trapped in a cell or room, and treating her leg from a bite. Pepper’s character yells from another room, asking if she’s OK. While trying to contact any possible rescuers, the daughter spots an alligator or crocodile. Pepper’s character offers to distract the animals, and rescuers are seen getting eaten in the flooded streets. The Crawl footage ends with Scodelario’s character in the shower, with the bathroom door closed. An alligator swims around the bathroom. 

Over the years, Crawl’s director – Aja – has made a name for himself by depicting extreme horror on screen. In 1999, he released his feature debut Furia starring famous French actress Marion Cotillard. By 2003, Aja released his second film High Tension, which is widely regarded as a cult classic, and a defining film of the New French Extremity movement. Since then, Aja has released five more feature films, with his sixth being especially unique, as he wrote, directed, and produced Crawl. Aja’s production collaborator, Raimi, not only directed the original Spider-Man trilogy, but also the iconic ‘80s horror films The Evil Dead, The Evil Dead II, and Army of Darkness.

Based on the description of Crawl’s first footage, the film seems to have a claustrophobic effect, much like the aforementioned High Tension. And with alligators and/or crocodiles hunting down humans during a hurricane, chances are that Aja’s new film with be gory and gnarly. We’ll keep you updated as more details about Crawl emerge. 

More: Terminator: Dark Fate CinemaCon Footage Description

2019-04-05 09:04:16

Q.V. Hough

Paramount’s 2020 Sizzle Reel Hypes Top Gun: Maverick, Coming to America 2 & More

Paramount hyped its 2020 film slate with a sizzle reel at CinemaCon. Also known as the Official Convention for The National Association of Theatre Owners, CinemaCon is an annual event where studios tease their biggest upcoming movies to a variety of industry professionals and members of the press. Studios typically unveil brand-new footage (including, in many cases, first-look clips) as part of their presentations, in combination with guest appearances by the directors, cast, and producers involved with their latest productions.

As part of their showing at this year’s CinemaCon, Paramount revealed first look footage for several of their upcoming 2019 movie releases; including, the Terminator sequel Terminator: Dark Fate, Ang Lee’s sci-fi assassin thriller Gemini Man (starring Will Smith), Alexandre Aja’s hurricane and alligators horror-thriller Crawl, and the live-action/CGI Sonic the Hedgehog video game movie adaptation. The studio also unveiled fresh material for their live-action cartoon adaptation Dora and the Lost City of Gold, as well as this May’s musical Elton John biopic, Rocketman. And finally, to top it all off, Paramount wrapped their presentation up with a brief sneak peek at what’s to come next year.

Related: Terminator: Dark Fate CinemaCon Footage Description

Paramount’s 2020 sizzle reel included little in the way of actual new footage, but did feature a teaser for Coming to America 2 with Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall, as well as a glimpse at Tom Cruise on his motorcycle and a jet landing from Top Gun: Maverick. Beyond that, the video listed several films slated to arrive net year, like the monster horror sequel A Quiet Place: Part 2, the Michael B. Jordan-led Tom Clancy adaptation Without Remorse, Antoine Fuqua’s sci-fi thriller Infinite (starring Chris Evans), the Dylan O’Brien-led adventure Monster Problems, a film adaptation of Clifford the Big Red Dog, an as-yet undisclosed G.I. Joe adventure, and even the animated sequel The SpongeBob Movie: It’s a Wonderful Sponge.

Compared to other major Hollywood studios, Paramount has struggled to churn out big hits at the box office in recent years. Case in point: their Star Trek movies are currently on ice after Star Trek Beyond‘s under-performance in 2016, and the studio’s attempt to launch a shared Transformers universe with The Last Knight in 2017 didn’t exactly go to plan. They’re also in the process of rebooting the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles films after 2016’s Out of the Shadows disappointed commercially, and are soft-rebooting the Terminator series with Dark Fate, after 2015’s Genisys failed to win over the moviegoing masses. As such, it’s little wonder they’ve fast-tracked a sequel to last year’s hit A Quiet Place and are revisiting 1980s hits like Coming to America and Top Gun, in the hope of striking gold again.

That said, films like Dora and Sonic the Hedgehog could easily give rise to lucrative new franchises, in the event that they succeed at the box office later this year. Similarly, if Dark Fate goes over well, the intent is to use it as the starting point for a whole-new Terminator trilogy. Something like Gemini Man also has the potential to become a runaway commercial success and maybe even get some love from the Academy for its visuals effects achievements. In short, depending on how things play out over the rest of the year, the outlook for Paramount could be a whole lot rosier (or the opposite) by the time 2020 actually rolls around.

MORE: Gemini Man CinemaCon Footage Description

2019-04-04 02:04:41

Sandy Schaefer

Sex and the City TV Follow-Up Being Developed by Paramount TV

The author of Sex and the City is ready to enrich a new generation of women with a follow-up of her iconic novel coming to Paramount Television. The new novel, Is There Still Sex in the City?, penned by Candace Bushnell, dissects friendship, dating, and sex after 50 in New York City. Paramount Television and Bushnell have made it clear that the plot is not a direct follow-up to the lives of characters Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha.

Released in 1997, Bushnell’s Sex and the City novel was scooped up by show creator Darren Star to become a groundbreaking, award-winning and legendary series for HBO. Starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis, Cynthia Nixon, and Kim Cattrall, the show follows four friends as they navigate life and tackle relevant issues such as sexuality, promiscuity, and femininity. Sex and the City provided a platform for discussion of tough issues and relatability for its audience with each character providing their four very different, individual perspectives. The series ran on HBO from 1998 to 2004 and has been hailed as one of the series that made the network so successful. After its finale, the show hatched two feature films, Sex and the City and Sex and the City 2. Fans were disappointed to learn that the development of Sex and the City 3 was canceled. However, Bushnell is ready to offer a set of new topics for female friends to tackle in the development of a new series.

Related: Every Season Of Sex And The City, Ranked 

According to EW, Paramount Television and Anonymous Content have landed the rights of Bushnell’s newest nonfiction novel. Set for an August release, the book puts the lives of women in their fifties under the microscope. Bushnell promises an honest depiction of women living in Manhattan who are dealing with Tinder dates, divorce, sex, and aging. The author said in a statement:

“It didn’t used to be this way. At one time, fifty something meant the beginning of retirement—working less, spending more time on your hobbies, with your friends, who like you were sliding into a more leisurely lifestyle.” In short, retirement age folks weren’t meant to do much of anything but get older and a bit heavier. They weren’t expected to exercise, start new business ventures, move to a different state, have casual sex with strangers, and start all over again. But this is exactly what the lives of a lot of fifty- and sixty something women look like today and I’m thrilled to be reflecting the rich, complexity of their reality on the page and now on the screen.”

Is There Still Sex in the City? is in the hands of executive producer Liza Chasin, Robyn Meisinger, and Bushnell – and Bushnell has also penned the pilot script. The new series will be the fourth of Bushnell’s novels to adapt into a TV series after Sex and the City, Lipstick Jungle, and The Carrie Diaries, which aired on the CW. As the series gets closer to production, more details will unravel, including the crucial casting choices of the leading ladies.

Sex and the City is still one of the most iconic and recognized series in the history of television. While the show broke down barriers for storytelling and walls for women, most of its success is due to the characters and the women who played them. Fans of Sex and the City may be skeptical of the new series without the narrations of Carrie Bradshaw, the squeals of Charlotte, the scorns of Miranda or the copulations of Samantha. It may be wise for Bushnell and team to provide a cameo or two of the original cast. After all, Sex and the City characters draw in a crowd which was displayed in the use of Carrie Bradshaw in a popular super bowl ad. But, with Bushnell the driving force, no doubt Is There Still Sex in the City? will find success and a fresh round of cosmopolitans.

Next: Guest Stars On Sex and the City, Ranked

Source: EW

2019-03-28 03:03:40

Bethany Guerrero

Paramount May Not Be Comfortable With Skydance’s John Lasseter Hire

Paramount is reportedly uncomfortable about Skydance’s decision to hire John Lasseter for its animation division, which the studio was not consulted about. A major figure in Hollywood animation for decades, Lasster began his career as an animator at Disney and helped get Pixar Animation Studios up and going in the 1980s. He went on to helm the studio’s first feature-length film, Toy Story, and even won a Special Achievement Award at the 1996 Academy Awards for his efforts on the then-groundbreaking 3D animated movie.

Following Disney’s purchase of Pixar in 2006, Lasseter was made the chief creative officer of both Pixar and Disney’s animation studios, and held those positions for more than a decade, during which time both studios released several acclaimed (and lucrative) hits, ranging from Up to Frozen, Inside Out, and Zootopia. However, as the #MeToo and #TimeUp movements took off in late 2017, Lasseter took a leave of absence from the studios in response to the sexual misconduct allegations made against him.

Released: Bryan Singer Criticized For Celebrating Bohemian Rhapsody Globes Win

More and more details emerged in the months that followed, revealing just how extensive these allegations were and how far back they actually went (decades, in some cases). As such, it came as little surprise when Lasseter announced he would step down from both Pixar and Disney Animation at the end of 2018 last June. What was surprising, however, was Skydance’s announcement last week, when it revealed it had hired Lasseter to lead its animation division. The move was quickly criticized across the film industry, and now Variety reports that Paramount wasn’t consulted about the decision ahead of time.

Paramount has been distributing Skydance’s movies for almost a decade now, with their releases ranging from hits like the Mission: Impossible and Star Trek films to expensive commercial bombs like Geostorm. As Variety‘s article notes, there’s not a lot Paramount can do to protest Skydance’s decision to hire Lasseter, legally-speaking. Even so, the outlet’s sources have learned that Paramount employees (especially the women who work at the studio) are “uncomfortable” about having to work with Lasseter. The staffers are further hoping that Skydance and its CEO, David Ellison, will release more detailed information about their investigation of Lasseter ahead of his hiring, and its findings.

Skydance and Paramount’s distribution pact calls for the latter to release the first two animated films from Skydance under Lasseter’s supervision (Split and Luck). That means Paramount has to make some tough decisions about its working relationship with Skydance, which has been overall quite profitable for them. They also have to consider the potential blowback they may suffer for working with a company that employs Lasseter, and how it could impact their efforts to revive their own in-studio animation department. However you cut it, the studio has a hard choice to make now.

MORE: Green Book Writer Deletes Twitter After Controversial Tweet Resurfaces

Source: Variety

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2019-01-14 03:01:00

World War Z Sequel Begins Production in June, Confirms Producer

It seems World War Z 2 will finally begin production next June, according to one of the movie’s producers. Getting the first movie – which was directed by Marc Forster and based on a script by Matthew Michael Carnahan, Drew Goddard, and Damon Lindelof – onto the big screen was a long and arduous journey. While it wasn’t a direct adaptation of Max Brooks’ acclaimed novel of the same name, it was still a different take on the zombie subgenre.

However, that doesn’t mean it revolutionized the horror genre. World War Z received generally positive reviews from critics and earned a whopping $540 million at the worldwide box office against an estimated production budget of $190 million, which was more than enough for Paramount Pictures to commission a sequel. But development on the follow-up installment lagged for years until the studio’s new chief came on board in 2017 and started to push it forward. Now, it’s slated to start filming next summer.

Related: Why Jurassic World 2’s J.A. Bayona Dropped Out Of Directing World War Z 2

In an interview with Variety on the red carpet for Beautiful Boy, producer Dede Gardner confirmed that World War Z 2 will begin production in June 2019. She also reaffirmed that Brad Pitt would be reprising his role from the first movie as Gerry Lane, with David Fincher on board to direct. Furthermore, producer Jeremy Kleiner provides an update on the script, saying that screenwriter Dennis Kelly is still working on it, but they’re quite happy with what they have so far.

It’s interesting that Paramount Pictures, especially under new leadership, still sees potential in this story despite it being more than five years since the first movie released. Sure, it performed well at the box office, but the zombie genre is even more crowded now than it was then. After all, Paramount recently and briefly started to develop a reputation for offloading properties they thought wouldn’t perform well in theaters, primarily to streaming giant Netflix. That’s why movies like Annihilation and The Cloverfield Paradox suddenly found themselves streaming online. But in the midst of all the apparent turmoil was World War Z 2, which kept on trudging forward.

Fincher started filming the second season of Netflix’s Mindhunter this past summer, so, given how adamant Gardner is about the June production start time frame, it seems the filmmaker has set aside time next summer to get the ball rolling on the long-awaited World War Z sequel. Whether they actually make that production start date remains to be seen, but at least fans can rest assured knowing the studio hasn’t forgotten about the movie.

Next: World War Z Horde Gameplay Trailer Recreates Movie’s Zombie Tsunami

Source: Variety

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2018-10-08 08:10:30 – Mansoor Mithaiwala

Best Assassin’s Creed Odyssey Abilities to Unlock First

Unlocking abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is paramount not only with regards to surviving in the open world game but also being able to complete it without having to resort to constantly retreating. Just like most action-adventure and role-playing games, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey gives players several tools to aid them in their journey, of which the abilities section is what elevates the playing experience above what franchise fans are perhaps used to.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey contains three sections of abilities – Hunter (ranged), Warrior (close-quarters combat), and Assassin (stealth) – and neither section should be ignored, for having a well-rounded skill tree provides for a more holistic experience. Every time players level up, they receive one new skill to redeem for any ability that’s currently available. And after progressing far enough into the story, they can even upgrade certain abilities, namely the ones that are assigned to their combat wheels.

Best Assassin Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Starting out, it’s always best to begin filling out the Assassin category seeing as this game is, well… an Assassin’s Creed game, and stealth is just as prominent in this title as previous installments. For this section, unlocking Shadow Assassin is key to starting off, seeing as it allows players to assassinate stronger targets. Upgrade it along the way as well, whenever possible. Then, unlocking Venomous Attacks and then later Poison Mastery helps in injuring the enemy, even with ranged attacks; it’s especially useful when fighting captains and tougher enemies who have high endurance. Next is Hero Strike, which uses the full power of the Spear of Leonidas to deal a powerful strike. Along these lines, Critical Assassination is also enormously helpful in assassinating captains and various other mini-bosses who would otherwise require multiple strikes to defeat. Unlocking Shadow of Nyx is certainly useful, but it’s not something that players would use often unless they are in a hectic situation and have nowhere to go.

Best Warrior Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

From the get-go, most players would want to start out with Sparta Kick, an ability which general gamers will recognize from the movie 300. Beyond being cool, it actually comes in handy when attempting to create some distance between yourself and the enemy. After that, acquiring the Bull Rush ability will help in clearing out a horde of enemies that have lined up. Even though those two aforementioned abilities will help clear out enemies, players will come face-to-face with some people with shields. To defeat them (or, at least disarm them while fighting), players should unlock the Shield Breaker ability. Then, in order to protect themselves and increase their damage, it’s best to acquire the Weapons Master and Gear Master abilities next – and upgrade them whenever the opportunity arises. Increasing damage and armor is vital to surviving harrowing fights later on.

Best Hunter Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Continuing off Assassin’s Creed Origins, archery in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is of utmost importance. Predator Shot should be selected first, seeing as it’s strong and allows players to guide the arrow themselves. It’s good at hitting hard to reach targets. Next up, Devastating Shot; a special ability that unleashes a powerful arrow, which can be even more powerful if fully charged up, to significantly damage stronger enemies. In fact, to completely master and utilize the hunter abilities to their fullest, it’s best to unlock the entire right column of that category: Archery Master (increases hunter damage), Overpower Bow Strike (a fully charged arrow that deals 1000% damage), and Ghost Arrows of Artemis (an arrow that be shot through shields, walls, etc.). The only other ability worth getting from the hunter category is Multi-Shot, which is useful in targeting four or more enemies at once. It helps with crowd control.

If players choose to follow this guide, they may unlock the aforementioned abilities at whatever point they feel like, but those are undoubtedly the best abilities that will aid players in their journey across Greece.

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2018-10-05 02:10:28 – Mansoor Mithaiwala

Amazon Talking to Sony & Paramount About Producing Movies for Prime

While most streaming sites are moving towards constant inflow of original content, Amazon finds itself in the midst of preliminary talks with Sony and Paramount on the creation of original films for Prime Video. As sites like Prime Video, Netflix, and Hulu continue to garner influence over the film industry, more and more deals of this nature may become quite commonplace.

Streaming sites are constantly changing the way viewers experience content, and Amazon wants to be at the forefront of this new wave. King of the streaming sites, Netflix, has been pumping out original content on a very regular basis, with a wide range of TV shows but also successful movies, like Beasts Of No Nation and Jim and Andy. Hulu is also dedicated to their own material with stellar shows like The Mindy Project, Casual, and The Handmaid’s Tale, however has yet to do much in the way of original movies. All of this is not to say Prime Video cannot boast its own original content. One would be remiss to ignore the Emmy-nominated The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, or Emmy-winning Transparent.

Related: Amazon Passes On James Gunn’s Starsky & Hutch Reboot

In their most recent move, reported by Deadline, Prime Video appears to be turning outwards, paying closer attention to the studios and finding a way to outsource some content – returning, perhaps, to the early days when streaming sites had no original films or shows to speak of. The potential negotiations with Paramount and Sony remain in the infant stages, as Paramount is currently strapped to a streaming deal with pay TV service, Epix – a deal they’ll likely make their way out of – while Sony, is under contract with Starz for the next four years. Overall, the decision to utilize Paramount or Sony’s content falls in line with the direction taken by the newly appointed head of Amazon Studios, Jennifer Salke – a firm believer in quality not quantity.

It’s long appeared that Amazon has had its eyes fixed on other streaming services, drawing waves of inspiration from its predecessors. However, one business move in particular, Paramount’s release of The Cloverfield Paradox directly to Netflix, had Jeff Bezos salivating. The result of that successful collaboration is what Prime Video wants to “replicate” for Paramount and Sony.

Though these talks are in the preliminary stages, one can imagine the success of previous models – as well as the increasing ubiquity of streaming services –  would lead Sony and Paramount to the obvious choice. The overall outcome will depend, as always, upon the consumers, and where they decide to watch their movies.

More: Infinity War Directors Creating Mysterious New Series for Amazon

Source: Deadline

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