Lionsgate's I Still Believe, also starring Britt Robertson, opens March 20, 2020
By Nigel Smith
KJ Apa movies from Riverdale‘s high school to concert arenas as Christian music mega star Jeremy Camp in his upcoming film I Still Believe — and PEOPLE has an exclusive first look.
The drama comes from the makers of the hit Christian film I Can Only Imagine, based on the story behind the group MercyMe’s song of the same name. Like that film, I Still Believe is a music-based film, telling the true life story of Camp, who lost his wife, Melissa, to ovarian cancer in 2001. The tragedy led him on a spiritual journey, which resulted in four emotional albums. He’s since been nominated for a Grammy Award and multiple American Music Awards.
Apa, 22, says he was drawn to the love story between Camp and Melissa (played by Britt Robertson in the film).
“Their love is seriously put to the test in this movie,” he tells PEOPLE. “I hope after seeing the love between Jeremy and Melissa the audience can sit there and think, ‘Wow, I hope that I can one day be in love like that.’ I mean that’s what I Still Believe is about: it’s about journeying through your biggest fears and disappointments and coming out still believing. I believe that anyone, everyone can relate to this film because it’s a story about love, loss, and hope.”
For the film, Apa, who says he hails from a “really musical household,” does all of his own singing. As he tells PEOPLE, he was “terrified” about that aspect of making the drama, despite occasionally crooning as Archie in Riverdale.
“I’m super uncomfortable when I sing,” he admits. “I went into the studio in Nashville — I did that first before we shot anything — and I think that really gave me perspective on the film. Having that sound and knowing what all that music is going to sound like before you go in is super important. It’s either going to boost your confidence and boost your morale or it’s going to be like, ‘Oh, man, that didn’t go so well, so what are we going to work with?’ Luckily, it couldn’t have gone better. I think people are going to love it.”
The film also stars Shania Twain and Gary Sinise and was directed by Jon and Andrew Erwin.
Lionsgate’s I Still Believe opens March 20, 2020.
“Knives Out,” starring Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Jamie Lee Curtis and Toni Colette, has been unveiled as the London Film Festival’s Gala movie. Rian Johnson’s whodunit, which also stars Ana De Armas, Katherine Langford and Christopher Plummer, will screen as the fest’s centerpiece American Express Gala film on Oct. 8.
The prestigious slot was taken by “The Favourite” last year. Johnson (“Star Wars: The Last Jedi”) and cast are expected to be in London for “Knives Out’s” European premiere.
The movie comes from Lionsgate and MRC, and pays tribute to mystery mastermind Agatha Christie. Everyone is a suspect after crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Plummer) is found dead. Debonair detective Benoit Blanc (Craig) is enlisted to investigate, sifting through a web of red herrings and self-serving lies to uncover the truth.
“I’m thrilled to be screening ‘Knives Out’ at the BFI London Film Festival,” Johnson said. “This film was an attempt to capture the twisty fun of an Agatha Christie whodunit. It’s a great pleasure to be showing it in the country responsible for the genre’s Golden Age.”
“With ‘Knives Out,’ Rian Johnson has crafted a devilishly clever and wickedly entertaining new crime caper,” said LFF director Tricia Tuttle. “As with his previous work, Johnson brings immense erudition and passion for the conventions of the genre he’s working in, but always makes something entirely his own. This is impeccably designed, with writing that keeps you guessing to the final moments, and his extraordinary cast are at their arch and compelling best.”
“Knives Out” is a T-Street production. Lionsgate is releasing it in the U.K. on Nov. 27.
The 63rd BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express takes place Oct. 2-13.
While John Krasinski is busy at work with the sequel to A Quiet Place, his screenwriting partners on the 2018 horror hit are taking on directorial duties for their next movie, Haunt. Scott Beck and Bryan Woods write and direct the haunted house horror movie, which follows a group of teens as they enter an “extreme” haunted house, only to find out the scares are real. Watch the Haunt trailer below.
Haunted houses are a Halloween ritual for any teen who loves a good scare, but sometimes “there happen to be psychopaths inside,” Beck said to Entertainment Weekly about his and Woods’ upcoming horror flick. Haunt follows a group of teens who find an “extreme” haunted house off the beaten path, and slowly discover that they’re being picked off one by one. Katie Stevens (The Bold Type, Faking It) stars as Haunt’s main protagonist, and presumable final girl, who notices early on that something is up.
“Our main girl is Harper…. is this young woman who’s in this horrifyingly abusive relationship,” Wood told EW. “It all comes to a head on the week leading up to Halloween. The whole idea is, like, Can I just let go, and have a good night, and move past this? All the while, we think that her ex- is following her, stalking her. We’re trying to merge this character story with kind of slasher tropes.”
Produced by Eli Roth, Haunt is a brutal and gory slasher in the vein of recent movies like Hell Fest and Blood Fest, which imagines haunted horror attractions taking a fatal turn. It’s not my cup of tea, but if this very specific genre is up your alley, then Haunt looks like it’s for you.
Here is the synopsis for Haunt:
On Halloween, a group of friends encounter an “extreme” haunted house that promises to feed on their darkest fears. The night turns deadly as they come to the horrifying realization that some monsters are real.
Haunt is released in theaters, on demand, and digital on September 12, 2019.
Lana Del Rey honored Guillermo del Toro during his Walk of Fame induction with a speech on Tuesday (Aug. 6).
“In a culture of sameness, he’s completely himself. And that’s the greatest lesson I get from his tales," Del Rey said. Del Toro is known for a number of well known films, including Pan's Labyrinth, The Shape of Water and Hellboy, among many others. Shape of Water earned the filmaker two Academy Awards for best picture and best director.
"On this day that we're honoring you, I would like to say that it's a beautiful thing to be reminded that being different is a thing to be celebrated, and it's a beatiful thing that we have you to always remind us of that each time we go back to your instantly classic films."
"I'm very happy to be celebrating with you on the iconic Hollywood Boulevard. Congratulations," she says at the end before going in for a hug.
Del Rey recently recorded a new version of Donovan's 1966 hit "Season of the Witch" for the renowned filmmaker's upcoming flick, Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, which arrives in theaters this Friday (Aug. 9).
“I have admired Lana’s music for a while now and felt in my gut that she would run with ‘Season of the Witch’ -- that she would use her alchemy to transform it,” del Toro recently said in a statement. “She is a great artist and has been an amazing partner with us in this adventure. It is an honor for me to have met her.”
Oscar-winning filmmaker Guillermo Del Toro will be honored with the 2,669th star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.
Fellow moviemaker J.J. Abrams and singer Lana Del Rey will salute The Shape of Water director when he unveils his star on 6 August (19).
“Guillermo del Toro is a director with one of the most creative and vivid imaginations,” Walk of Fame producer Ana Martinez tells WENN. “He has his pulse on a realm of fantasy that has captivated and astounded audiences.
“The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce is proud to honour him for his historic film work.”
"Cash Only" director Malik Bader is quickly making a name for himself in the world of crime thrillers, with his original script throwbacks to nitty and gritty tales of bad guys and even worse deals. His latest, “Killerman” (which had its world premiere at Fantasia last night), is a full immersion into the world of drug dealing, and throws in a unique existential angle to make excellent drama out of how money and product pass between bloodied hands. It’s the kind of movie that builds not just with its story but its ambition, and makes for an exhilarating, audacious crime thriller, provided you go along with the ride.
The mechanics of that process can make for a dry start to the story, initially: the opening scenes of "Killerman" take viewers from point A to point B to point Y when it comes to a money laundering deal. It's a lot of footage of cars pulling up, of scowling men speaking in code so they aren't caught by the cops. Soon into the story, though, Bader's interest becomes our own with its two main characters: Moe (Hemsworth) has a partner in Skunk (Emory Cohen), and the two attempt to make a deal with the money of their boss Perico (Zlatko Buric) that could help them make it big.
But then “Killerman” slams into its inspired plot hook—Moe gets a concussion during a gruesome car accident with Skunk when the deal goes way wrong, and leads to a car chase through narrow NYC streets pursued by dirty cops. With a massive case of amnesia, Moe doesn’t know who he is, or what life he has made for himself. But instead of getting to rest, the drug deal has left too many loose ends, and Skunk puts him back in the clubs and in front of the people they know. While trying to fix the deal, Moe essentially has to take a tour through his life, seeing the people that he’s interacted with, and learning about his capacity for violence. The script builds itself out of this conceit, like how Guy Ritchie’s bold “Revolver” risked a crime story on a lead character's schizophrenia, and Bader’s script is so committed and fast-paced with this psychological element that it only makes the intricate course of events even more fascinating.
“Killerman” proves itself to be as gritty as you want it to be, starting with the gorgeous dark colors of its 16mm Kodak stock, and the pulsing synth score that heightens the stakes of Moe’s actions. And that car chase—the editing is so sharp in this scene and others that you practically feel Moe getting that concussion as his vehicle slams into a parked car.
When it comes to violence, "Killerman" is always raw and unflinching, with men screaming for their lives after a bullet tears through them and blood spurts everywhere, or dogs ripping up human flesh in torture scenes that are nightmarish. The dirty cops hunting Moe and Skunk too (especially the one played by Nickola Shreli) are especially vicious, at the center of some of the story’s most ruthless scenes. From its initial framing as a movie that’s all about criminals—and virtually about wanting drug dealers to win—“Killerman” thrives in the darkness it establishes for itself, and that amorality becomes a fascinating component here like in the best of crime stories.
This relentless movie is unabashedly pulpy, in ways that do and don’t work within its desired genre charms. The dialogue sounds too stock, for example, and might make you wonder whether leather jacket thugs with slick haircuts only speak in cliches, or if the movies have just made them that way. (The performances are all around sturdy, even if you want Hemsworth to get a little crazier.) The same goes for the purpose that women have for the story, as mere stock love interests on the fringes of Moe and Skunk’s macho behavior, written to only that extent in a way that feels too lazy.
But on the other hand, “Killerman” creates an unexpected mythology with its more radical story choices; Bader displays a true recklessness in the best way and makes the story feel grandiose and intense. Even the reveal of the title’s meaning is a bold, polarizing choice—it may not work for some viewers, but it sure as hell left a smile on my face.
Oscar-winning director Guillermo del Toro revealed new details about his Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark adaptation on Saturday evening at the Horton Grand Theater in Downtown San Diego.
Del Toro, who produced the new film, joined director Andre Ovredal onstage in the cramped theater space to debut new footage from the upcoming horror film and discuss the process of adapting the beloved spooky children's books.
If her performance is any indication, and there’s any justice in the world (iffy), the Irish singer-actress is going to be a big, big star.
Remember the name Jessie Buckley.
If her performance in “Wild Rose” is any indication, and there’s any justice in the world (iffy), the Irish singer-actress is going to be a big, big star.
She plays Rose-Lynn Harlan, a single mother from Glasgow who’s just out of prison and dreams of becoming a country star in Nashville.
She’s a wild child. She had her two kids before her 18th birthday, then went to jail on a drug-related charge (long story; she blames the judge for an unfair sentence). Now in her 20s and back home, decked out in cowboy boots and other Western attire, she starts to resume her partying ways. This includes trips to Glasgow’s Grand Ole Opry, a country-music bar where she’s well-known as a local performer.
Her mom (Julie Walters), who took care of the kids while she was gone, has other ideas. Mom wants her to take responsibility for her children and for her own life. She wants Rose-Lynn to settle down, to get a steady job, to spend time with her kids.
But Rose-Lynn loves, loves, country music, and she loves to sing it. Patsy Cline and “Walking After Midnight.” New songs. You name it. She even has a tattoo on her arm with the saying “Three chords and the truth,” which expresses the simplicity and honesty she finds in the music.
It’s not just a phase. She wants to go to Nashville; she knows in her heart she’s meant to pursue her passion. And she could be right: She can sing. Boy, can she sing.
With the Fourth of July being celebrated this week, what better time than to think about the American Dream? The idea of pursuing life, liberty and happiness enshrined in the Declaration of Independence itself, along with the idea that you can make any dream happen if you just work hard enough.
In the new movie “Wild Rose,” a young and wild single mother of two named Rose-Lynn dreams of being a country singer. But she’s got a few obstacles in the way, including the fact that she lives in Glasgow, Scotland, and is fresh out of a year-long prison stint for distributing heroin. Now wearing an electronic ankle bracelet, she is required to be home every night from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.
Rose-Lynn is the kind of free-wheeling gal who yells the F word at the top of her lungs the second she’s free from her jail cell and heads to her boy toy for a shag before bothering to make it home to her young son and daughter. Add a stop at the pub where she gets buzzed on whiskey on the way home, and it’s no wonder her mom isn’t too happy to see her return after a year of raising her kids.
With her children distant from her and a seemingly dead-end job as a housemaid to a wealthy family that pays her just about $12 an hour, Rose-Lynn feels like she’ll never pull together the money to escape to Nashville and take a real swing at success. But when the children of her employer Susannah come home early and catch her belting out a song while vacuuming, Susannah asks her if she’s tried to make it professionally.
Rose-Lynn responds by immediately asking for $5,000 to make a fresh start in Nashville, but Susannah tells her to instead tape a video demo of herself singing and send it to the top country music deejay on the BBC radio airwaves. When Rose-Lynn knocks his socks off with a beautifully heartfelt ballad, she gets an invitation to come meet him in London and her dreams seem suddenly tangible.
Yet questions remain: Is she really talented enough to make it, or is she jeopardizing her family by seeking to spend time away from them? How will she resolve things with her mother, who thinks she’s delusional? And can she really ever put her wild past behind her?
“Wild Rose” is a quiet film, in spite of its occasionally rousing tunes sung by lead actress Jessie Buckley, an Irishwoman who broke out on a British talent competition series and has been a rising star ever since. Rose-Lynn is a fascinating character, a real hell raiser in the early scenes of the film, but eventually revealing a profound loneliness and desire to finally do better as a mother, a daughter and for herself.
Buckley has incredible vocals, but in keeping with the movie’s intimate and quiet tone, her most powerful moments are in the songs where she sings almost in a whisper. It’s a magical effect that will make those who see this movie fall in love with her immediately.
As her mother, veteran actress Julie Walters (who was Oscar-nominated in the 1980s for “Educating Rita”) looks and acts like Emma Thompson. It’s a solid performance of a woman who has been ground down and exasperated by her daughter’s poor behavior and incredibly bad choices for so long, she wonders if she’ll ever truly turn it around.
Those aspects — of redemption and family, trust and the desire to change — are universally relatable issues. They make this movie very affecting, but the occasionally too-slow pace keeps this from being a perfect movie. If you love good music or character-based drama, however, “Wild Rose” should smell quite sweet.
Lionsgate dropped its trailer for its new murder mystery Knives Out on Tuesday, and the cast is to die for.
The film attempts to uncover the truth behind the untimely death of the famous crime novelist Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer), who is killed just after his 85th birthday. Detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is called in to help crack the case, and he questions everyone from Thrombey's "dysfunctional" family members to his loyal staff.
"I suspect foul play, and I've eliminated no suspects," Craig says in the preview.
Craig and Plummer aren't the only famous faces in the trailer. The "whodunit" also features Chris Evans, Ana De Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis, Toni Collette, Don Johnson, Michael Shannon, LaKeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford, Noah Segan, Edi Patterson, Riki Lindhome and Jaeden Martell.
In addition, it's written and directed by Rian Johnson, who also did Looper, Brick and Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
To get a sneak peek at the film, check out the trailer.
Jamie Dornan is joining comedy Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar from Bridesmaids duo Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo.
Wiig and Mumolo star as best friends Barb and Star, who leave their small Midwestern town for the first time to go on vacation in Vista Del Mar, Florida, where they soon find themselves tangled up in a villain's plot to kill everyone in town.
Dornan will play Edgar, a lovelorn spy who gets caught between the forces of good and evil.
Wiig and Mumolo co-wrote the script for the Lionsgate pic, which will be directed by Josh Greenbaum and is slated for a 2020 release.
Gloria Sanchez Productions — the female-focused production banner founded and led by Jessica Elbaum, Will Ferrell and Adam McKay — will produce, along with Wiig and Mumolo.
Dornan, who is repped by UTA, the U.K.'s Troika and Sloane Offer, will next be seen in Drake Doremus' new movie, starring opposite Shailene Woodley and Sebastian Stan. He will then star opposite Anthony Mackie in Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead's Synchronic, and will begin production on John Patrick Shanley's Wild Mountain Thyme.
Truth-based fiction films that cover salient aspects of important news stories that have skewed or squelched by print and broadcast news media can have a powerful impact on public perception about historic events and how they’ve impacted the present and are influencing our future civilization.
If well made, compelling and popular, these truth-based narratives may stand as ‘of record,’ ostensibly revealing to public scrutiny facts that are to be found only in documents that have been designated as top secret and sealed for a specific duration because of their ‘sensitive’ or imflammatory nature.
Truth-based narratives ‘of record’ are not new in concept. A decade ago, Roger Donaldson’s well-researched, utterly compelling and admittedly somewhat speculative The Bank Job (2008) enlightened audiences about a London bank vault robbery that unleashed secret and salacious photos of Princess Margaret and a number of British MPs that actually brought down the British government. The actual images and most documents pertaining to the actual events are still under seal, so all that the public knows about this scandal-clad 1971 London heist known as the “Walkie Talkie Robbery” is Roger Donaldson’s fictionalized movie. In the public eye, The Bank Job is ‘of record.’
In 2010, Doug Liman’s Fair Game brought unreported aspects of the Valerie Plame spy scandal and the questionable legitimacy of the US invasion of Iraq to light. More recently, Adam McKaye’s Vice (2018) gave viewers an admittedly somewhat speculative and avowedly uncomplimentary look at the persona and doings of former VP Dick Chaney, indicating that he wielded unprecedented power in determining both foreign and domestic policy during the George W. Bush presidency and was unconscionable in his use of it, including his role in the US invasion of Iraq.
Dick Cheney is not a character in this year’s Official Secrets, but his name comes up in the truth-based narrative about Katherine Gun (Keira Knightly), a British intelligence officer who turned whistleblower, leaking information about the illegal NSA spy operation that was designed to push the UN Security Council into sanctioning the invasion of Iraq. Journalist Martin Brightn (Matt Smith), then working for The Observer, broke the story — which caused Katherine Gun to be charged with treason, or more specifically, with violating Britain’s Official Secrets Act of 1989.
The film is a contemplative spy thriller and courtroom drama that is completely engaging although it has a known denouement. So, no spoilers are risked with mention that ultimately the British government dropped the charges against Gun because — as suggested in the Official Secrets script — the case would bring to light evidence that would embarrass the British administration, including then Prime Minister Tony Blair, and perhaps lead to members of the government being charged with war crimes.
Director Gavin Hood, whose previous political thrillers include Tsotsi, A Reasonable Man and Eye in the Sky, paces the film to reveal story and Katherine’s character in such a way that the viewer has time to think about what ‘good citizenship’ means, and to ponder Kathrine’s reasons for taking a stand and the impact her decisions made on her personal life and on human history. Hoods use of actual archival footage of Tony Blair, George Bush, Colin Powell and of news events — including the bombing of Iraq — sets the drama into its real life historical context, and targets the way in which elected government heads of state and their administrations manipulate media in order to push policies that support their own interests rather than those of the people whom they are supposed to serve.
If you like spy scenarios and courtroom dramas, and are interested in sorting out truthful reporting from fake news, this film will satisfy. It’s entertaining and informative, and its release is quite timely.
Title: Official Secrets
Directors: Gavin Hood
Release Date: August 30, 2019
Running Time: 112 mins.
Locations: London, with archival footage from USA, Iraq
Production Country: USA
Distribution Company: EAGLE FILMS
There is something bodaciously brash about Rose-Lynn (Jessie Buckley). The centerpiece of Wild Rose is fresh out of prison and fresh full of ideas about how she’s going to go from her native Glasgow, Scotland to Nashville, Tennessee and make it as a country star. Only problem is, well … there are a slew of them and how Rose tackles them lies at the heart of this hauntingly heartwarming film.
Director Tom Harper has crafted a touching and yes, melodic, story that will resonate with audiences across spectrums. After all, this is a tale with country music at its heart and those who utterly adore it with every ounce of their soul will find something utterly compelling about it. To quote Rose, when asked why she adores the musical genre that is uniquely American, she simply replies, “it’s three chords and the truth.” It’s that sentiment that has made the music milieu transcendent across geographical lines.
Also, one does not have to enjoy that kind of music to embrace and be enamored of Wild Rose.
When Rose-Lynn arrives at her mother Marion’s (Julie Walters) house, fresh from prison, she is not given a hero’s welcome. Her two children, a little boy and slightly older girl, barely know their mother. Sure, she was only gone for a year. Marion didn’t bring the kiddos by the prison, because she didn’t want them to see their mother in such a place. Immediately, Rose’s son warms up to her. Her daughter … not so much and it will take a whole lot of work for mom to earn the love of her only little girl.
Marion is tough on her child and it’s a relationship that is as central to the dynamics of Wild Rose as Rose’s budding familial bond with her kin. It appears that Marion had high hopes for her child, but a few terrible decisions (such as getting pregnant at 16 or that whole thing that got her sent away for a year in prison) and—worse still—the immature manner in which she is known to respond to those who have challenged her decision making, will not win any points with her mum.
In the opening act of Wild Rose, Nicole Taylor’s screenplay astoundingly gives us a mountain of regret and missed opportunities coupled with a pretty bad attitude. It’s hard to root for Rose. As much as she has to win over her mother, children, the parole judge (she has a tracker around her ankle and has to be home by 7 p.m. every evening—something that makes pursuing a country music singing career a tad impossible), the wild woman-child has to sweep us off of our feet. Rose-Lynn is the most fascinating of protagonists. It’s never a given, even through the second act, that this soul will be one that warrants our inspiration instead of our ire. As Taylor’s script, whose spirit is stunningly captured by Harper, provides little morsels of hope for the title character, we too see the signs of greatness that could arise from the single mum whose voice is like a lightning bolt of brilliance.
Among the first people onscreen to see potential where the system, society and even her mother and own daughter see a grab bag of disappointment, is her boss, Susannah (Sophie Okonedo). This wealthy Glasgow resident took a chance on her when she hired an ex-con to clean her house (what with two small children herself). Rose never tells her about her kids, but Susannah’s kiddos cannot stop talking about her. They heard her belting out tracks one day while working and inform their mum that the cleaning lady has priceless pipes. Upon hearing her first-hand, she could not be more supportive and even orchestrates a way for her to meet the King of Country Music in London at BBC Radio. That relationship, and what it promises for Rose, does not play out as one would expect it would—as dozens of movies have wandered down that worn road.
Upon reflection, it makes perfect sense that country music would find an audience in Scotland (and the greater United Kingdom, all over the globe, really). As Rose states to Susannah, when asked why she likes country music, all you need is “three chords and the truth.” She even has that quote tattooed on her arm. The lyrics of country music encompass many elements that easily find kindred spirits, specifically here with Rose. These subjects range from troubles or triumph with love, the complexity of the inner challenges of the working man and woman, issues with the law and the feeling that all of society is against you, to the bond of family and how it can be everything from an asset to a hindrance. When the camera gives us an establishing shot of the music club that Rose played and plays at, we see “Glasgow’s Grand Ole Opry” in big neon lights. After taking all this in, it all makes perfect sense.
Walters is sensational. Her role is demanding on so many levels. She has to be a mother to her daughter’s kids while she’s in prison and then suddenly shift role to grandma when mom gets out of the slammer. Once Rose is free, Marion must straddle a line between wholehearted support and keeping her daughter’s feet to the fire. She lets her know, in no uncertain terms, when she makes one of those bad decisions. Mom calls her on it. There is even one moment that found me covering my eyes because I just couldn’t watch Marion lecture Rose. Don’t get me wrong, she deserved it. Still … see, the titular character has to earn her adoration—from everyone onscreen and each one of us witnessing her cinematic journey.
Buckley’s vocal presence is sonically seismic. It’s completely unique and befits a rocking country girl whose influences run the gamut from Bonnie Raitt to Reba McEntire, with a smattering of Janis Joplin and Nancy Wilson tossed in for good measure. I could listen to her belt out songs all day long—from guitar-wailing country rock to the best romance-centric tracks that will ring your heart out like a wet washcloth.
Wild Rose is a movie moment expertly crafted for dreamers and for anyone who has loved someone who dreams. Infinitely inspiring, the film also grounds itself in a reality that works wonders for enrapturing its audience in that first act and a half where we didn’t know if Rose would ever pull it all together. By its conclusion, you have been on a journey that is rocky, littered with stumbles and a soul who has worked her tail off to ensure that her children are proud of her. In the end, that is the only approval that matters. As such, Wild Rose rivets and had this writer reaching for that tissue box—all while smiling profusely.
We are excited to announce that FIVE FEET APART received three nominations at the 2019 Teen Choice Awards in the following categories:
Choice Drama Movie Choice Drama Movie Actor Choice Drama Movie Actress
It could turn out to be be the indie sleeper of the year. As Rose-Lynn, a brazen young ne’er-do-well from Glasgow who’s fixated on going to Nashville to become a country singer, Jessie Buckley proves a tremendous actress, and maybe a born star. When Rose-Lynn gets up on stage at a local pub and lets loose, time melts away (we’re in the zone of incandescent tradition that is country), and so does every trace of her Scottishness. She becomes country, and her gift is transporting. Yet Rose-Lynn is also a spectacular screw-up, with two kids she all but ignores. The director, Tom Harper, and screenwriter, Nicole Taylor, play a bait-and-switch game. For a solid hour, they seduce you into thinking that “Wild Rose” is going to be the sort of cheeky inspirational Miramax-in-the-’90s fairy tale it turns out not to be. It’s not just that the movie gets better as it goes along — it actually knows it’s toying with you. The film seems to grow up before your eyes and find its glimmer of soul right along with its eager, talented, messed-up heroine. — OG
Cheerleading is a sport that commands attention. It whips the crowd into a controlled fervor, getting people off their feet and cheering with excitement. Unfortunately, director Zara Hayes’ “Poms” barely manages to do the same with its story about a group of retired women who reclaim their vitality and challenge societal norms by forming a cheerleading squad. Though it aims to be more than just a mashup of “Bring It On” and “Book Club,” the inherently uplifting and endearing facets of its heartfelt sentiments are overtaken by artificial packaging and stale execution.
As a pessimistic New York City transplant, Martha (Diane Keaton) faces her greatest challenge yet: living in the impossibly peppy retirement community of Sun Springs, Ga. The lavish, well-maintained property fosters cheery dispositions and relaxed lifestyles — things a cynical curmudgeon like Martha despises. But her former life in the city was unbearably lonely, so she seeks a drastically different atmosphere. Her advancing age and, more importantly, aggressive terminal cancer has made her surprisingly sentimental about her youth and paths not taken.
Martha is at first reticent to make friends, preferring to cocoon herself in her pre-fab, personality-free home instead of trying to fit in at group exercise and neighborhood get-togethers. But her world begins to change for the better once she meets next-door neighbor Sheryl (Jacki Weaver). Sheryl is Martha’s opposite with her colorful, tight-fitting wardrobe and vivacious free spirit, yet her vigor inspires Martha to rediscover her own.
The pair set out to form a cheerleading club, which is unheard of to their enclave’s small-minded residents, who include the ironically unfriendly president of the welcoming committee, Vicki (Celia Weston). Not only must the newly assembled squad find more members, which they incorrectly assume will be difficult, they must also get competition-ready in a short amount of time. The team is forced to battle their own physical limitations and a few other serious setbacks.
Heartening themes about redefining the notion of family are what give the movie its luster, as well as the idea that self-empowerment has no expiration date. It’s encouraging that screenwriter Shane Atkinson and Hayes, who shares a story by credit, focus primarily on female friendship, though they undermine and underestimate the empathy capacity of another group of women: teen girls. The super seniors’ combative relationship with antagonistic high school cheerleaders, who film their failures and mercilessly mock them, takes center stage as the main conflict. There’s no reason the heroines’ own inner demons couldn’t have driven the plot.
Perhaps the greatest disappointment is that Atkinson and Hayes never strike a good balance between all the characters in the ensemble. The film fails both in showing them as multi-faceted individuals and in capturing their group dynamics, allowing superficial character traits to define them. Consistently-upbeat Sheryl’s only worry is if the authorities find out her teen grandson Ben (Charlie Tahan) is living with her, but that’s forgotten by act two. The filmmakers become more concerned with an unnecessary romance between Ben and classmate Chloe (Alisha Boe), who betrays her own cheer team to help train his grandma’s squad. It’s a lot of hoop-jumping when a simpler solution would’ve been to eliminate Ben and the rival squad altogether, and make Chloe a visiting character who helps the ladies train.
Sultry Olive (Pam Grier), who tangos her way into the troupe, revives her waning romance with her hubby — but since we didn’t see her struggling with it in the first place, the impact is lessened. Conservative Alice (Rhea Perlman) finds her inner power after her controlling husband dies, but outside of one George Carlin-esque swearword tirade, her character fades into the background. Aerobics enthusiast Ruby (Carol Sutton), yoga instructor Evelyn (Ginny MacColl), and line dancer Phyllis (Patricia French) are dealt short shrift altogether. The lone character afforded a noteworthy performance by the lackluster material is baton-twirling Helen (Phyllis Somerville). Somerville’s small screentime is infused with a palpable, nuanced sense of anguish and anxiety over her ageist, sexist son essentially imprisoning her financially, and then physically after an injury.
For a film that’s supposed to instill confidence in the hearts of its target demographic and beyond, it lacks that same sense of bravery in its storytelling to say something genuinely moving. Time and time again, it falls back on outdated clichés and lazy contrivances. It prefers to follow predictable patterns set by many previous underdog stories, ticking off the expected emotional beats versus doing something radically different to make the emotions feel earned.
Overall, “Poms” isn’t a film that demands the audience’s attention — and that’s a shame given the breadth of skilled, seasoned talent involved. The blueprint for a genuinely inspired, warm-hearted dramedy is indeed there, it’s just that the filmmakers can’t figure out how to properly utilize what they have.
It was a blue carpet pep rally as Diane Keaton, Jacki Weaver, Pam Grier and Rhea Perlman debuted their new film “Poms” on Wednesday night in Downtown Los Angeles. But much like their characters in the film, the actresses’ cheers weren’t for sports teams. Instead, they were celebrating a Hollywood system that is hopefully becoming more inclusive for older women. Keaton and Weaver star in “Poms” as Martha and Sheryl, two senior citizens who decide to start a cheerleading club at their retirement community. “I think in this day and age, people realize that you don’t have a ‘use by’ date,” Weaver told Variety. “Some of us can keep on going. Some of us still look to the future and make the most of the present.” But as much as Hollywood has evolved, who could have ever predicted a movie featuring a “Bring It On”-style scene of a group of seniors trying out for the cheerleading squad? “[It used to be that] women are erased and invisible after they get a certain age, but once we started saying, ‘We’re not invisible — we’re full of life, we take care of kids, we’re still viable to society.’ And once you own that, then you get offered to sit at the table,” Grier said.
It’s been 45 years since her career-making turn in “Foxy Brown” and the 69-year-old actress has noticed that the industry has been changing: “I think there is a shift, but it’s an evolution and a revolution.” “Poms” follows last year’s “Book Club,” a rom-com that earned $68 million at the box office and also starred Keaton, who is 73. Perlman says the reason for the growing support for movies about mature women is simple. “Because women go to the movies, people are starting to realize that women want to see themselves up there,” Perlman said, adding that watching Judi Dench travel to India in “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” transformed her own views on box office possibilities for older actors. “I am so happy that it’s finally starting to happen. I mean there’s still way more white men in movies and in businesses, but slowly people are starting to take notice of who else is around them and how important it is for them to be represented as well. And how great their stories are,” the 71-year-old actress explained. “So, I’m just thrilled with how things are moving.”
After assembling the cast, which also includes Celia Weston, Charlie Tahan, Bruce McGill and “13 Reasons Why” star Alisha Boe, the ladies went through a cheerleading boot camp to help the women bond and nail those moves. “It was tough,” Weaver, 71, laughed. “You get a bit creaky at our age.” The premiere included a post-screening party at WP24, where pom-pom shaking cheerleaders lined up in a tunnel formation and welcomed guests, including Emmy winner Sarah Paulson. “Poms” hits theaters on May 10.
In 2013 Margot Robbie turned heads in The Wolf of Wall Street as the ultra-seductive and equally feisty Naomi; later in 2016, she brought DC Comics’s disturbed girlfriend Harley Quinn to life in Suicide Squad; and now, the actress proves she’s as versatile as ever in her latest film Dreamland, which just debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Serving as both the star and producer of the period piece, Robbie really does carry the film. And, according to Dreamland director Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, “She throws great parties.” Joris-Peyrafitte, sporting a slim navy suit and slicked-back hair continued, “She’s just as excited as everyone else to be there. She sets the tone for everybody else and that’s all you could ask from a producer and lead actress.”
Dreamland is part bank robbery caper, part Spaghetti Western. Set in the 1930s Dust Bowl era, Robbie stars as Allison, a mysterious and thrill-seeking bounty hunter who is surprisingly chic (refer back to the time era and situation).
In a hard-to-miss nod to Bonnie and Clyde, Allison charms the heart of the young Eugene Evans played by Slaughterhouse Rulez’s Finn Cole. Despite Robbie’s problematic actions in the film, Cole’s character remains boyishly infatuated and allows his life to be transformed entirely by the frenzied blonde who loves to drive her getaway cars with baby blue leather gloves on. But at the premiere’s red carpet, Robbie appeared the modern-day starlet in a black lace Chanel jumpsuit, which ultimately proved that there really isn’t anything she doesn’t look good in.
Dreamland will premiere at the upcoming Tribeca Film Festival ( April 24 – May 5). The film will be included in the Spotlight Narrative section of the Network based festival. Margot Robbie will be in attendance but we will not be conducting international press at this time. The film will also be screening in the upcoming Cannes market in May.
Netflix announced the release of "Peasants' Rebellion" on their platform, thus becoming the first Lebanese series to be broadcast through their network.
After the overwhelming success achieved on the local channels, the largest Lebanese historical production series included more than 100 Lebanese actors, which took eight months to be filmed.
Ranked amongst the top 5 Arabic series in Ramadan 2018 with one of the highest viewers rating statistics.
Received one of the highest trends on Twitter for 15 days.
Gained regional popularity for being daring yet respecting the cultural factor.
Critics praised the series positively and considered it to be Ramadan 2018 out of the box series for; actors’ intense performance, the surprise element, the tailored music, the mysterious sequence of events and lastly the cinematography.
AL NAHAR newspaper, a renowned Lebanese Newspaper.
The plot continues to thicken on LBCI’s latest prime time drama, PEASANTS' REBELLION, as alliances begin to form, love blooms, and betrayals are made.
It is truly a pleasure when a television series, a fully Lebanese production no less, create such a positive impact on its audience - through some do continue to negatively criticize, sans reason, even if it means finding something as ridiculous as the show’s choice of font to attack.
Al Nahar Newspaper, a renowned Lebanese newspaper, described the Peasant's Rebellion as the magnet that compelled people off the streets, leaving an echo of the social discourse that is occurring in a certain nation. A "Spark Ignites" leaving the audience wanting to relive and enjoy the authenticity of the series. I will be sharing the updated portfolios on Monday to be followed by 2019 Projects skeleton.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1″ shot past “Guardians of the Galaxy” to become the highest grossing domestic release of 2014. It’s the second time in a row that the dystopian franchise has topped the charts. It gives Lionsgate bragging rights as the studio with the top film in consecutive years — something no one else has achieved in over a decade. “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1″ hit $333.2 million on Wednesday, edging past “Guardians” at $333.17 million at the U.S. box office. Unlike most major tentpole releases, the latest “Hunger Games” didn’t get the benefit of a 3D or Imax surcharge.
Patriots Day is the TOP TEN FILM winner at the National Board of Review, USA, 2016 awards and Spotlight award for the creative collaboration of Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg
We are proud to share with you that The Hunger Games Mockingjay 1 has Won the following Awards:
Golden Camera, Germany - Best International Actress (Julianne Moore).
Golden Trailer Awards 2015 - Best Fantasy Adventure, Best Original Score Tv Spot, Best Fantasy / Adventure Poster, Best Teaser Poster, Best Wildposts.
Kids' Choice Awards, USA 2015 - Favorite Female Action Star (Jennifer Lawrence).
MTV Movie Awards 2015 - Best Musical Moment.
NewNowNext Awards 2014 - Best New Lead Film Actress (Natalie Dormer).
Teen Choice Awards 2015: Choice Movie: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Choice Movie Actor: Sci-Fi/Fantasy (Josh Hutcherson), Choice Movie Actress: Sci-Fi/Fantasy (Jennifer Lawrence).
Women Film Critics Circle Awards 2014 - Best Female Images in a Movie.
Today, in over 25 locations around the globe THE HUNGER GAMES iconic '3-Finger salute' will be posted on high profile buildings, billboards and locations, including Times Square in New York, Westfield Centre in London, Colonne di San Lorenzo in Milan and Novy Arbat Avenue in Moscow just to name a few. The hands used in the synchronized global outdoor advertising campaign were created from 6 images of people ranging from ages 8 to 80, both men and women and from all nationalities.
Lionsgate’s Codeblack Films has struck an output deal with Middle East based distributor Eagle Films. The deal sees all films produced or co-produced by Codeblack distributed in the Middle East and North Africa, beginning with “Addicted,” based on the best selling book by Zane. Formed in 2012 as the Lionsgate’s ‘next generation’ offshoot, Codeblack has activities which span movie production and distribution through to home entertainment, TV syndication and new channel monetization. Its previous releases include “Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain,” and independent thriller “Repentance,” starring Academy Award winner Forest Whitaker. Codeblack signed a previous output deal with Times Media Films, covering South Africa, in October 2014. “Codeblack is expanding its footprint beyond the domestic marketplace,” said Jeff Clanagan, Founder, CEO and President of CodeBlack Entertainment
VANCOUVER, BC, and SANTA MONICA, CA, October 16, 2014 – Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, today unveiled plans to debut the year’s most anticipated film, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, in the UK, Asia and North America. The film, the third in the global blockbuster Hunger Games film franchise. All purchases on AMCTheaters.com, Cinemark.com, Fandango.com, and MovieTickets.com in the first 24 hours will receive a free download of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on VUDU. The first Hunger Games film generated nearly $700 million at the worldwide box office. The second film in the franchise, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, was the #1 domestic film of 2013 and the 10th highest-grossing North American release of all time, grossing over $860 million around the world and bringing the combined global box office of the first two films to over $1.5 billion. The worldwide phenomenon of The Hunger Games continues to set the world on fire with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1.
The Ambassador's Hall of Casino Du Liban hosted the ceremony of the 7th Edition of Murex D'or on September 4th 2014, where Eagle Films' production BEBE won Best Film by Public Vote. The producer, Mr Jamal Sannan _ CEO of Eagle Films, accepted the Murex D'or.