Peter Jackson's denial came ahead of the Hobbit premiere in New Zealand Wednesday. Also tracking in film news, Cate Blachett is eyeing a Wicked Stepmother role; MGM is considering a remake of a 1975 horror pic; And the Friar's Club is set to roast Jack Black.
Peter Jackson Again Denies The Hobbit Animal Cruelty
Jackson said, "Absolutely none - no mistreatment, no abuse," at a news conference in Wellington hours before Wednesday's premiere. He also described PETA as "pretty pathetic" for seeking publicity ahead of the premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Deadline reports.
Palm Springs Film Festival to Honor Robert Zemeckis
Zemeckis will be feted at the festival for his latest pic, Flight, starring Denzel Washington. The festival, which take place January 3 - 14, will present the award to Zemeckis at a gala January 5th, Variety reports.
Cate Blanchett Eyes Disney's Cinderella
Blanchett could play Cinderella's evil stepmother in the Mark Romanek-directed film and would be the first actor to join the project, written by The Devil Wears Prada writer Aline Brosh McKenna, Deadline reports.
MGM Eyes Sundown Remake
The possible re-do is a remake of the 1976 horror movie The Town that Dreaded Sundown. The original was based on five unsolved murders attributed to a Phantom Killer during a three month period in 1946 in the border area between Texas and Arkansas, Variety reports.
Friar's Club to Roast Jack Black in 2013
Black will sit in the hot seat at the group's next annual roast. The comedian follows previous roastees including Betty White and Quentin Tarantino. "We only roast the ones we love, and with Jack, we love his comedy, we love his music and we love his enormous talent," said Friars Club "Abbot" Jerry Lewis. "It’s going to be a great day for all of us." The event will take place April 5 in New York. THR reports.
Flight, the first non-motion-capture feature Cast Away and Forrest Gump filmmaker Robert Zemeckis has directed in over a decade, is the kind of movie that, people like to bemoan, the industry doesn't make anymore. It's a solid, burnished work made about adults for adults and anchored by Denzel Washington in a role that calls for some classic star gravitas. It's a mainstream film, but a consciously meaningful one, occupying that increasingly perilous mid-budget middle ground in a world continually drifting toward the opposing poles of massive blockbusters and scrappy indies. There's not a superhero in sight and not a trace of nuance either — it's the straightforward drama of a man forced by circumstances out of his control to confront the destructive way he's been living his life. more »
Disney's 2011 family adventure Mars Needs Moms wasn't just a box office disappointment; it was a box office disaster, one of the worst in movie history. Mars producer Robert Zemeckis, appearing at the Philadelphia Film Fest with his latest Oscar-hopeful, Flight, prefers to remember Mars Needs Moms another way: "It's the best 3-D movie since Avatar."
Also in a Monday afternoon round-up of news briefs, doc filmmaker Werner Herzog eyes a fiction project for his next directorial; Robert Zemeckis set for a Chicago Film Festival award; The Austin Film Festival names its winners and the Toronto International Film Festival sets its 2013 dates.
That's right, Denzel Washington is such a gentleman he gave his actress wife Pauletta the spotlight on the red carpet for Flight, which closed out the 50th Annual New York Film Festival. Getting an answer from the celebrity couple was more difficult than getting an on-time flight out of Newark Liberty International Airport, thanks to a scheduling snafu that got Washington and his wife onto the red carpet late. This led what's known in the business as a soundbite stampede from the media who'd gathered at Lincoln Center in Manhattan.
The world premiere of Robert Zemeckis's Flight will close the 50th anniversary edition of the New York Film Festival, organizers said Thursday. The action-packed thriller stars Oscar-winner Denzel Washington as Whip Whitaker, a veteran airline pilot who crash lands his plane following a mid-air catastrophe, saving nearly everyone on board.
After riding train after train and whatnot, Denzel Washington is back navigating giant hunks of careening metal in Robert Zemeckis's Flight, which marks the director's return to live-action filmmaking after a decade spent trying (in vain, IMO) to conquer the uncanny valley. So how well do director and star succeed in piquing your interest in a movie about an airline pilot (Washington) who saves a plane full of passengers only to have his heroism — and drinking habits — come under scrutiny in the aftermath?