Art by Huy “Wee” Dinh.
Walt Disney Studios and Lucasfilm recently announced that ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ is now officially titled ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens.’ Set for December 18th, 2015, the likes of John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Crystal Clarke, Christina Chong, Pip Andersen, Gwendoline Christie, Miltos Yerolemou and Max von Sydow are joining the original stars of the saga, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, and Kenny Baker in the hugely anticipated film. Kathleen Kennedy, director J.J. Abrams, and Bryan Burk are producing ‘Star Wars: Episode VII,’ and John Williams returns as the composer.
With ‘Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur’ set for a July 22nd, 2016 release, Warner Bros. Pictures and director/producer Guy Ritchie are reportedly in talks with Jude Law to play the villain in the film. ‘Sons of Anarchy’ and ‘Pacific Rim’ star Charlie Hunnam is playing the title role of King Arthur in the film, and Astrid Berges-Frisbey (I Origins, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) is set to play Guinevere. Ritchie is currently seeing actors for the part of Arthur’s mentor, the last major role to be cast before the film goes into production. Idris Elba was originally in contention, but a deal could not be reached, and the two sides parted ways.
The project is said to be a re-imagining of Arthurian legend, with the primary influence being Thomas Mallory’s “Le Morte d’Arthur,” published in 1485. Warner Bros. Pictures hopes the film can kickstart another franchise, with the story to be told over six installments. It’s unknown whether Jude Law would be appearing in one movie or play a villain throughout the course of the franchise. Law prevously played Dr. John Watson in Guy Ritchie’s ‘Sherlock Holmes’ franchise.
Listen To ‘Lord Of The Rings’ Star Billy Boyd’s ‘The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies’ End Credits Song
Peregrin “Pippin” Took’s (Billy Boyd) melancholic rendition of “The Edge of Night” is undoubtedly one of my favorite moments in ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy, and today Billboard has unveiled Boyd’s end credits song for the final film in Peter Jackson’s cinematic Middle-Earth, ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies.’ In collaboration with ‘The Hobbit’ co-writers and co-producers Philippa Boyens and Fran Walsh, Boyd penned the original song titled “The Last Goodbye”. “We focused on not just the final installment,” says Boyd, “but moreso on this 10-year epic adventure. A song to sum up the six movies.” Neil Finn (“Song Of The Lonely Mountain”) and Ed Sheeran (“I See Fire”) provided the two previous outro songs in ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy.
Always one to keep people up to date with his latest projects, Vin Diesel has posted on his hugely popular Facebook account (87+ million likes) this new image from ‘The Last Witch Hunter.’ Directed by Breck Eisner (The Crazies), Vin Diesel is joined by Rose Leslie, Elijah Wood, Julie Engelbrecht, Olafur Darri Olafsson and Michael Caine in the supernatural action flick. ‘The Last Witch Hunter’ sees an immortal witch hunter (Diesel) partnering with his natural enemy, a female witch (Leslie), to stop the covens of NYC from unleashing a plague on humanity. The film opens on October 23th, 2015.
From Fox Searchlight UK comes this new poster for director Jean-Marc Vallée’s (Dallas Buyers Club) ‘Wild.’ The screenplay is adapted by Oscar nominated writer Nick Hornby (An Education, High Fidelity) from author Cheryl Strayed’s New York Times #1 best-seller ‘Wild,’ the book that re-launched Oprah’s Book Club 2.0. The film opens on December 5th in the US and January 16th in the UK.
With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother, Cheryl Strayed (Reese Witherspoon) has lost all hope. After years of reckless, destructive behavior, she makes a rash decision. With absolutely no experience, driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl hikes more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, alone. ‘Wild’ powerfully captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddens, strengthens, and ultimately heals her. The film also stars Laura Dern, Michiel Huisman, Gaby Hoffman, Thomas Sadoski, and Kevin Rankin.
Starring the likes of Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Mark Strong, Rory Kinnear, Charles Dance, Allen Leech and Matthew Beard, ‘The Imitation Game’ offers a dramatic portrayal of the life and work of Alan Turing, one of Britain’s most extraordinary unsung heroes, and one of the world’s greatest innovators.
The pioneer of modern-day computing, Alan Turing (Cumberbatch) is credited with cracking the German Enigma code and the film is a nail-biting race against time by Turing and his brilliant team at Britain’s top-secret code-breaking centre, Bletchley Park, during the darkest days of World War II. Turing, whose contributions and genius significantly shortened the war, saving thousands of lives, was the eventual victim of an unenlightened British Establishment, but his work and legacy live on. Morten Tyldum (Headhunters) is directing from a screenplay by Graham Moore, based on the book “Alan Turing: The Enigma” by Andrew Hodges. ‘The Imitation Game’ is set for a November 14th bow in the UK and a November 21st release in the US.
It’s a responsibility to play any role, yet to play someone who’s been wronged by history, I can imagine that held an extra weight of importance? And then there’s personalising this extraordinary man…
Benedict Cumberbatch: Yeah. I think so. There’s a disparity between his importance and prevalence in our modern culture, as well as what he achieved in the 20th century, and the comparative lack of knowledge of the full span of his story and life. The idea of getting a broader story out there and a broader picture of him out there did bare a weight of importance, for sure. It’s his legacy, you know? This has been an extraordinary decade for him because of his centenary, official pardon from the Queen (for his prosecution for homosexuality in 1952), exhibitions, books and now this film. It’s all part of the momentum – I hope – to bring him the recognition he deserves as a brilliant scientist, a father of the modern computer age, a war hero, and as a man who lived an uncompromising life at a time of disgusting discrimination contextualized by the fear of the red threat of communism.