Shirtless Channing Tatum, Matt Bomer, Alex Pettyfer, and Matthew McConaughey are featured in the red-band Magic Mike trailer. (Please scroll down.) Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh (Traffic) directed this (romantic?) comedy about strippers. Yeah, male strippers. But is the “male” qualifier really necessary? Talk about (anti-male) sexism…
Now, the red-band Magic Mike trailer shows more chest and ass than its tamer green-band trailer (see further below). (But no penises. Well, unless … Take a good look at the photo above.) Anyhow, much like its predecessor, this latest Magic Mike trailer doesn’t make stripping look arousing at all – whether or not you’re into muscular, fully shaved, hip-swishing guys. Matthew McConaughey, at least, seems to be having a good time.
Written by Reid Carolin, Magic Mike tells the story of a successful stripper (Channing Tatum) who becomes the mentor of a newcomer (Alex Pettyfer). the film is purportedly inspired by Channing Tatum’s past life as a stripper.
Also in the Magic Mike cast: Adam Rodriguez, Joe Manganiello, Kevin Nash, Olivia Munn, Mircea Monroe, Riley Keough, and Bridesmaids’ Wendi McLendon-Covey. Magic Mike opens June 29.
Magic Mike photo: Warner Bros.
Channing Tatum stripper movie: Magic Mike
Channing Tatum Shirt Off: ‘Magic Mike’ green-band trailer
Channing Tatum shirt off – but not pants off – is the star of the Magic Mike trailer. (Please scroll down.) Steven Soderbergh, 49, who has directed everyone from veteran Oscar winner Alec Guinness (Kafka) to porn superstar Sasha Grey (The Girl Experience), handles the sexy (well, one hopes) proceedings in Magic Mike, which co-stars Alex Pettyfer, Matt Bomer, Joe Manganiello, and Matthew McConaughey.
Now, the Magic Mike trailer doesn’t make stripping look at all arousing. In fact, I found it hard to understand why those women were screaming like mad hens at the mere site of well-toned guys dancing to the tune of “It’s Raining Men.” But then again, perhaps Magic Mike is about the artificiality of it all: the faux sensuality of strippers and the just as faux enthusiasm of their audiences.
Written by Reid Carolin, Magic Mike follows a successful stripper (Channing Tatum) who becomes the mentor of a newcomer (Alex Pettyfer). Also in the cast: Kevin Nash, Adam Rodriguez, Olivia Munn, Mircea Monroe, Riley Keough, and Bridesmaids’ Wendi McLendon-Covey. Magic Mike opens June 29.
Channing Tatum, 32, used to be a stripper/dancer before he became the star of stuff like 21 Jump Street, The Vow, The Dilemma, Dear John, and G.I. Joe: Retaliation. Some will see this career move as progress; others will surely disagree.
Stripper Channing Tatum Magic Mike photo: Claudette Barius / Warner Bros.
Johnny Depp ‘The Thin Man’: Budget Too Fat?
Johnny Depp The Thin Man déjà vu: First, Gore Verbinski’s The Lone Ranger, to star Johnny Depp as Tonto and Armie Hammer in the title role (in that order), was to have been a megabudget Western for Disney. Then the $165 million-budgeted, Universal-distributed, Jon Favreau / Harrison Ford / Daniel Craig Western Cowboys & Aliens turned out to be a box office disappointment in North America and, more importantly, a mediocre performer overseas, where Westerns are about as popular as baseball movies.
The Lone Ranger was put on hold until Verbinski and producer Jerry Bruckheimer managed to reduce the film’s budget from an astronomical $250 million to a somewhat-less-astronomical $215 million. (Ironically, as per reports the budget for The Lone Ranger, which started shooting a while back, has gone back up.)
Warner Bros.: Rob Marshall / Johnny Depp’s The Thin Man to wait
Now, Deadline.com reports that Warner Bros. has decided to go slow on The Thin Man, a re-adaptation of Dashiell Hammett’s novel, which was made into a movie by MGM in 1934. To star Johnny Depp as champagne-loving investigator Nick Charles, The Thin Man was slated to be directed by Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides’ Rob Marshall from a screenplay by David Koepp.
Why Warner Bros.’ decision to put the brakes on the project? Well, one official reason is that Rob Marshall will soon start work on a film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim’s musical fantasy Into the Woods. Another is that Johnny Depp, whose 14-year relationship with French pop star Vanessa Paradis has just ended, wants a longer break between film projects.
There’s also the fact that The Thin Man has a reported $100 million budget – and that Johnny Depp’s most recent star vehicle, Tim Burton’s $150m-$170 million-budgeted Dark Shadows, has to date brought in $75.4 million in North America and $135 million abroad for a worldwide gross of $210.4 million. Of that amount, around $100 million will go to Warners, which will then have to deduct marketing and distribution expenses that could reach as high as $80–$90 million.
Warner Bros. averse to (some) big-budget gambles
Also worth noting is that Warner Bros. recently stalled two other high-profile, big-budget movies: David Dobkin’s Arthur & Lancelot and Akira, which was to star TRON: Legacy‘s Garrett Hedlund. (At one point, Twilight‘s Kristen Stewart was rumored as one of Akira‘s leads.)
As yet, no actress has been selected to play Nora Charles, though rumored contenders included Amy Adams (Man of Steel), Carey Mulligan (Drive), Rachel Weisz (The Constant Gardener), Isla Fisher (The Great Gatsby), Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada), Eva Green (Dark Shadows), Emma Stone (The Amazing Spider-Man), and Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids).
In the original The Thin Man and its five sequels, Nora Charles belonged to Myrna Loy, while William Powell played Nick Charles and Skippy (see email further below) played Asta. W.S. Van Dyke directed the first three films in the series: those were The Thin Man, After the Thin Man (1936), and Another Thin Man (1939).
Minor detail: The original The Thin Man was made on a $231,000 budget – or about $4 million today. That represents approximately 1/25th of the reported budget of the Johnny Depp remake.
Note: The Thin Man (1934) inflation-adjusted budget calculated via data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Daniel Radcliffe, The Woman in Black
‘The Woman in Black’ Sequel Plot
The Woman in Black sequel – has a plot. Jon Croker, a story editor in the first film, is writing the new – and apparently original – Hammer Films project. Jane Goldman wrote the first Woman in Black adaptation, which was based on Susan Hill’s novel.
According to a synopsis found at Shock Till You Drop, the Woman in Black sequel centers on a “beautiful young nurse” striving to help World War II soldiers suffering from combat trauma and other psychological ailments. As if the soldiers’ mental woes weren’t enough, the Woman in Black has begun haunting the local military hospital.
No director, cast, or titles – “The Woman in Black 2”? “The Return of the Woman in Black”? “The Curse of the Woman in Black”? “The Woman in Black Strikes Back”? – have been announced as yet.
The Woman in Black: Surprising international box office success
Directed by James Watkins, The Woman in Black was Daniel Radcliffe’s first movie after Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the final installment in the Harry Potter franchise. Budgeted at a reported $15 million, The Woman in Black went on to gross a surprising $127.73 million worldwide, including $54.33 million in the U.S. and Canada, $34.55 million in the United Kingdom, and a remarkable $8.89 million in Mexico.
In addition to Daniel Radcliffe, The Woman in Black features Janet McTeer, Ciarán Hinds, Shaun Dooley, David Burke, and Liz White.
The Woman in Black / Daniel Radcliffe picture: CBS Films.
Woody Allen ‘To Rome with Love’ Kicks Off LAFF
Woody Allen’s To Rome with Love kicked off the Los Angeles Film Festival earlier this evening. LAFF runs June 14-24, mostly at the L.A. LIVE entertainment complex in the downtown area.
Allen was in attendance, telling the crowd (quote via Movieline’s Twitter page): “If you like [To Rome with Love], I want you to tell your friends and pressure Sony so they don’t put it in the witness protection program. If you hate it and think it was a waste of time coming, don’t let me know because I get depressed easily.”
To Rome with Love Italian box office
To Rome with Love opened on April 20 in Italy, where Allen’s omnibus comedy has taken in a solid $9.63 million – to date, the country’s eighth biggest box office gross of 2012. (Midnight in Paris collected $11.86 million last year.) Sony Pictures Classics will release To Rome with Love in the United States on June 22.
Worth noting: In Italy, To Rome with Love was distributed by Medusa Films, which has no less than five movies among the top ten on the 2012 box office chart. The others are Luca Miniero’s Benvenuti al nord / Welcome to the North; Olivier Nakache and Éric Toledano’s The Intouchables; Paolo Genovese’s Immaturi - Il viaggio; and Fausto Brizzi’s Com’è bello far l’amore / Love Is in the Air. In other words, having a strong, savvy distributor can make a hell of a difference to an “independent” film’s popular success.
Written and directed by, and featuring Woody Allen, To Rome with Love boasts an eclectic cast: Life Is Beautiful‘s Oscar winner Roberto Benigni, Vicky Cristina Barcelona‘s Oscar winner Penélope Cruz, and The Social Network‘s Oscar nominee Jesse Eisenberg, in addition to fellow Oscar nominees Ellen Page, Judy Davis, and Alec Baldwin, plus Alison Pill, Greta Gerwig, Riccardo Scamarcio, Alessandra Mastronardi, Alessandro Tiberi (also featured in Immaturi - Il viaggio), Isabella Ferrari, Antonio Albanese, Flavio Parenti, and veterans Giuliano Gemma and Ornella Mutti.
Ellen Page / Jesse Eisenberg / To Rome with Love photo: Philippe Antonello / Sony Pictures Classics.
James Franco ‘Oz: The Great and Powerful’ Pic
James Franco / Oz: The Great and Powerful: A prequel to L. Frank Baum’s The Wizard of Oz, whose 1939 Victor Fleming-directed movie version starred Frank Morgan in the title role and Judy Garland as Dorothy, the 3D fantasy Oz: The Great and Powerful opens on March 8, 2013.
Considering the film’s release date, Walt Disney Pictures clearly wants Oz – directed by Spider-Man / Drag Me to Hell‘s Sam Raimi – to become another Alice in Wonderland. Released in March 2010, the Tim Burton / Johnny Depp / Mia Wasikowska 3D (-converted) blockbuster went on to gross $1.024 billion worldwide.
Oz: The Great and Powerful Italian ad
In the above Oz: The Great and Powerful picture from an Italian coming attractions ad (via The James Franco Forever Tumblr and Bleeding Cool), you get to see James Franco as Oz, long before he grew into Frank Morgan. The balloon seen in the background is Oz’s means of transportation – which may turn Oz: The Great and Powerful into an Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz, Around the World in 80 Days mix. The Italian title, by the way, reads “The Great Oz.” No word on his being powerful as well.
Sam Raimi, of course, is best known for his three Spider-Man movies starring Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, and James Franco himself. The only non-Spider-Man movies Raimi has directed so far this century are Drag Me to Hell (2009) and the Cate Blanchett crime thriller The Gift (2000). Oz: The Great and Powerful is Raimi’s first big-budget effort since Spider-Man 3 (2007).
Oz: The Great and Powerful cast
In addition to Best Actor Oscar nominee James Franco (127 Hours), Oz: The Great and Powerful features Black Swan‘s Mila Kunis, Oscar winner Rachel Weisz (The Constant Gardener), three-time Oscar nominee Michelle Williams (Brokeback Mountain, Blue Valentine, My Week with Marilyn), Zach Braff, Abigail Spencer, Joey King, and Martin Klebba. Screenplay adaptation by Days of Wrath‘s Mitchell Kapner and Rise of the Guardians’ David Lindsay-Abaire.