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André 3000 stars as Jimi Hendrix in biopic's first look
By Veronica Linares
Footage from the upcoming Jimi Hendrix biopic All is By My Side finds André 3000 taking on the role of the rock legend.
All is By My Side will focus of Hendrix's life before he became famous, a time when he was just a back-up guitarist named Jimmy James. Later, a fan named Linda Keith takes him to London in 1966 where he transforms into Jimi.
In the one-minute, 19-second clip, Hendrix and Linda (Imogen Poots) have a flirty conversation before he flies out to California. During their talk, Hendrix tells his former lover he's written a song about her.
The John Ridley-directed film will make its U.S. debut at South By Southwest in March.
'Frozen' is the second highest grossing animation of all time (image courtesy Disney)
Frozen has made one billion dollars (£598 million) at the global box office.
The Disney animation, which won Best Animated Feature and Original Song at the Oscars, has made an estimated 388.8 million dollars (£232.68 million) in the US and 611.5 million dollars (£365.95 million) internationally since its release last November.
The Bafta-winning Disney musical, featuring the voices of Kristen Bell and Jonathan Groff, has already beaten Monsters Inc to enter become the UK's highest grossing original animated film of all time.
The movie is now the second highest grossing animated film of all time globally, just behind Toy Story 3, and the most profitable non-sequel animated picture ever.
It is also yet to be released in Japan, where it opens on March 14.
Loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen's fairytale The Snow Queen, the film stars Idina Menzel as snow queen Elsa, who has magical icy powers. Kristen portrays her younger sister Princess Anna, while Jonathan is the voice of mountain man Kristoff.
Oscars 2014: It all came down to two possible winners
"12 Years a Slave" director Steve McQueen leaps into the air as he celebrates with his cast on stage after winning best picture at the Oscars (courtesy LAT)
By Kenneth Turan
As the evening wore on - and did it ever wear on - the many questions everyone had going into Sunday night's Academy Awards show boiled down to but one: Would this evening be a single coronation or a double one?
With "Gravity" cleaning up on the technical and craft side, as expected, eventually winning seven categories it was nominated for (including director for Alfonso Cuarón), there was only one thing left to decide: Would this film's momentum sweep the board and bring home the best picture statuette as well? Or would "12 Years a Slave" keep that final honor for itself?
As everyone who followed or engaged in the endless prognostication that characterized this elongated Oscar season knew, this was the rare year when best picture was up for grabs until the very end. And as the evening progressed with few surprises, the tension surrounding how the one category without a clear favorite would play out grew.
Finally, when "12 Years a Slave" was called, it seemed like the academy had gotten it right, given credit where credit was due by its Solomon-like decision to divide its treasure between the two films that were at the top of everyone's lists. Though it was a terrible shame that as fine a film as "American Hustle," which had 10 nominations, was shut out, if best picture had to go to either "12 Years" or "Gravity," by the end of the night "12 Years" was the appropriate choice.
Even the small clips from the film interspersed throughout the program testified to its wrenching power, and the acceptance speeches for the two other awards "12 Years" won earlier were truly potent.
Non-Stop Ends The LEGO Movie’s Streak and Earns the Top Spot at the Box Office
Liam Neeson in the new film 'Non-Stop' (image courtesy Universal)
By Tasha Meares
It would seem that there is finally a film that could end The LEGO Movie's reign over the Top of the Box Office. This weekend, Liam Neeson and his latest thrill ride Non-Stop captivated audiences everywhere and earned the Top Spot at the Box Office.
Non-Stop, which stars Neeson alongside Julianne Moore, earned an estimated $30 million this weekend.
The film's stay at the Box Office may not be as long-lived as films like Frozen and The LEGO Movie experienced. Over the course of the next three weekends, there are films that are being released that have the potential to give Non-Stop a run for its money.
Next week it will be 300: Rise of an Empire and Peabody and Mr. Sherman that will be knocking on the film's doorstep. The following weekend, it will be Need for Speed which stars Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul. Finally, three weekends from now, we will have the latest installment in the Muppets franchise entitled Muppets Most Wanted and the young adult film Divergent hitting theaters.
Debuting in second place this weekend is the religious epic Son of God. The film, which retells the classic story of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, earned an estimated $26.5 million this weekend.
While this is nowhere in the same ballpark as The Passion of the Christ, which starred Jim Caviezel in the main role; I don't think anyone really expected the film to hit it out of the park quite like that. In any case, it is still an incredibly solid start for the film. Son of God does have the potential to see a slight increase next weekend; however, I don't think it will be enough to overtake the heavy hitters that are coming this way.
Coming in third place this weekend was the former reigning champion, The LEGO Movie. The film earned approximately $21 million this weekend, bringing the film's four-week total to $209.33 million. When you add in the $121.1 million the film has made in the foreign box office, The LEGO Movie has earned an estimated $330.43 million worldwide. Clearly, everything is still awesome for The LEGO Movie.
Will and Jaden Smith awarded Razzies for 'After Earth'
Will Smith (left) and son Jaden in a scene from 'After Earth' (image courtesy Sony / Columbia Pictures)
Will and Jaden Smith have something they can bond over. They were both awarded Razzies for their performances in "After Earth."
Jaden was selected as worst actor for his starring role in the sci-fi flop about a father and son stranded on an untamed earth, while the elder Smith was chosen as worst supporting actor at Saturday's Golden Raspberry Awards, which lampoons Hollywood's awards season on the eve of the Oscars. The duo was also selected as the worst screen combo by online Razzies voters.
Razzies organizer John Wilson noted the pair was "stranded on Planet Nepotism."
"After Earth," which was directed by M. Night Shyamalan, tied with "Movie 43" for the most prizes with three awards. The raunchy comedy anthology featuring the likes of Halle Berry, Richard Gere, Kate Winslet and Naomi Watts earned Razzies for worst picture, screenplay and director. Apparently, it took a village to craft something so loathed. The Razzies noted that "Movie 43" is credited with 13 directors and 19 screenwriters.
Tyler Perry also didn't receive any good tidings from the Razzies . Perry -- as feisty alter-ego Madea -- was picked as worst actress for "A Madea Christmas," while Kim Kardashian was designated worst supporting actress for her role in the drama "Tyler Perry's Temptation."
Despite being the year's biggest box-office bomb, "The Lone Ranger" lassoed just one prize: worst remake, rip-off or sequel.
Oscar best picture horse race to be a photo finish between 'Gravity,' '12 Years,' 'Hustle'
Chiwetel Ejiofor, center, in a scene from the film, "12 Years A Slave." (image courtesy Fox Searchlight / AP)
By Jake Coyle
Many of the winners who will take home an Oscar on Sunday have long been forecast, their triumph made seemingly self-evident after months of anticipation. That is, except for one little category: best picture.
Even in a particularly lengthy awards season (the Academy Awards were pushed back slightly for the Olympics), and despite the tireless analysis of an ever-swelling Oscar blogosphere, no one really knows which film is going to take the night's biggest award.
This Oscars, more than any in years, will go down to the wire.
Of the nine best picture nominees, the front-runners are widely considered to be Alfonso Cuaron's 3-D spectacle "Gravity," Steve McQueen's historical odyssey "12 Years a Slave" and David O. Russell's corruption comedy "American Hustle."
The industry guild awards, usually the most predictive honours, have only muddied the waters.
Actors, the largest branch of the Academy of Motion Pictures, have been most enthusiastic for "Hustle." The Screen Actors Guild awarded it their top honour. Just as Russell's "Silver Linings Playbook" did last year, "American Hustle" managed the very rare feat of landing nominations in all four acting categories (for Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper).
Cuaron and "Gravity" won at the Directors Guild. The Producers Guild couldn't even decide: "12 Years a Slave" and "Gravity" tied for its top prize. "12 Years a Slave" also won best picture at the Golden Globes and at Britain's BAFTA Awards.
The XBox 'Minecraft' game (image courtesy Minecraft / Microsoft)
By Megan Gibson
Minecraft is heading to the big screen.
After the jaw-dropping success of The Lego Movie—which has raked in $280.5 million worldwide since its release three weeks ago—Warner Bros. has made moves to turn another beloved franchise into a movie by buying the rights to the incredibly popular game.
Minecraft, which was widely released in 2011, is an open play building game where players create avatars and then a world, using blocks to create structures. It also now has more than 100 million users, which, if Warner Bros. has any say in the matter, should translate into plenty of movie ticket sales.
Surprisingly, Deadline reports that executives are planning the do a live-action film. Less surprisingly, given the subject matter and potential, there is already plenty of interest from potential writers and directors. Roy Lee, who co-produced Lego, is set to produce Minecraft along with Jill Messick, whose previous producing credits include Mean Girls and Hot Rod.
There's no word on potential stars at the moment, or a title for that matter. We're guessing they'll probably go with something like The Minecraft Movie.
Ghostbusters III Going Ahead Despite Harold Ramis's Death
Harold Ramis at the June 13th, 2009 press conference for the movie 'Year One' (image courtesy Wireimage)
By Megan Gibson
Following Harold Ramis's death on Feb. 24, Sony execs will be reworking the script for the upcoming Ghostbusters III, reports The Hollywood Reporter.
Ramis not only co-wrote the original Ghostbusters, he also starred in the 1984 film and its 1989 sequel, along with Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd and Ernie Hudson. The four played a team of parapsychologists in New York. The third installment, which was written by The Office writers Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, had small parts for the original squad of ghostbusters where they pass the torch on to a new generation.
In the wake of Ramis' death, however, Ivan Reitman, the film's director, will be meeting with the Sony team to discuss how they'll move the project forward. Sadly, the discussions are likely to be something of an echo of meetings for the first Ghostbusters, which originally included a part written for John Belushi. That script also needed to be reworked after Belushi's death in 1982.
Academy Awards 2014: Readying for Oscars red carpet is serious work
Lead scenic artist Dena D'Angelo, right, and scenic artist Rick Roberts use sand paper to prepare the giant Oscar statue for gold paint before he makes an appearance on the red carpet.
By Amy Kaufman
For most Oscar viewers, the red carpet is little more than a fluffy delight - a few hours filled with insanely expensive dresses, over-caffeinated commentators and false modesty.
But for Joe Lewis, whose job is to make sure the red carpet is ready to be tread upon come Sunday, it's serious business. For the past seven years, Lewis has been contracted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to hire hundreds of vendors for the big day, overseeing everything from power and lighting to fan bleachers and porta-potties. His company began preparing for the Oscars in September.
Around two weeks before the Academy Awards, Lewis relocated from his home in Manhattan Beach to the Loews Hollywood Hotel so that he could be close to the action. Not that the proximity has helped his sleeping schedule much.
"I got 70 minutes last night," he said with a chuckle Tuesday morning. "But I like the intensity of it. We're essentially building a little city out there."
The actual red carpet - which begins after the stars exit their limos at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue and travels all the way up the staircase to the Dolby Theatre entrance - is more than 600 feet long and won't be laid until Friday evening.
Until then, Lewis will repeatedly check the weather forecast - the area is tented in the case of rain (a distinct possibility this year). And on Oscar day, just before the 289 media outlets credentialed for the show arrive, he'll even make sure the carpet has been vacuumed.
Dan Aykroyd leads tributes to Ghostbusters co-star Harold Ramis
The Ghostbusters team has lost a valuable member (image courtesy Columbia Pictures)
Dan Aykroyd has led the tributes to fellow Ghostbusters co-writer and actor Harold Ramis, who has died aged 69.
Director Ramis died of autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis, a rare disease that involves swelling of the blood vessels, his agent told the BBC.
Aykroyd tweeted that he was "deeply saddened to hear of the passing of my brilliant, gifted, funny friend, co-writer/performer and teacher".
Ramis's credits also included Groundhog Day, Animal House and Caddyshack.
Aykroyd added of his friend: "May he now get the answers he was always seeking."
Ramis's family released a statement paying tribute to the actor, which said: "His creativity, compassion, intelligence, humour and spirit will be missed by all who knew and loved him."
Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day star Bill Murray also added: "He earned his keep on this planet."
Ramis found fame as bespectacled ghost-hunter Egon Spengler in the Ghostbusters franchise in 1984, which was a global smash and spawned a sequel in 1989 as well as a long-running cartoon series. A third instalment had been in development for several years.
The film remains one of the most successful comedy movies of all time, with takings of more than $500m (£300m) adjusted for inflation.
Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman told Entertainment Weekly: "The world has lost a wonderful, truly original, comedy voice with the passing of Harold Ramis.
"He possessed the most agile mind I've ever witnessed. He always had the clearest sense of what was funny and how to create something in a new clever way."
Reitman added he "loved him like a brother" and that Ramis "was very generous about making everyone around him look better and smarter".
Disney launches cloud movie service for mobile, online viewing
The entrance gate to The Walt Disney Co is pictured in Burbank, California (courtesy Reuters)
Walt Disney Co has launched Disney Movies Anywhere, a service for consumers to buy and watch Disney, Pixar and Marvel films online and store them in the cloud, in the latest bid by a Hollywood studio to encourage digital movie purchases.
Disney, like other Hollywood studios, is trying to boost digital sales after consumers moved away in recent years from buying DVDs, cutting a lucrative source of revenue.
The media company said in a statement it launched the new service on Tuesday, coinciding with the digital release of Disney's blockbuster animated movie "Frozen."
The service allows consumers to buy digital movies from a library of more than 400 titles through Apple Inc's iTunes store and the Disney Movies Anywhere website and app.
The purchased movies can be watched on a laptop or desktop computer, or on Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, Disney said. Consumers can also view the films through the Apple TV box.
The service is built on Disney's proprietary digital rights locker KeyChest, rather than UltraViolet, a cloud storage service used by other major Hollywood studios.
Harold Ramis on the set of 2009's "Year One" (courtesy LAT / Columbia Pictures)
By Betsy Sharkey
What I will remember most about Harold Ramis is his smile - always there in his work, ever playing across his face. Even when the writer/actor/director was trying to look serious, his eyes twinkled and a grin tugged at the corners of his mouth. As if he couldn't help it.
He carried humor with him everywhere, packed in his bag of writing tricks, packed in his 6-foot-2-inch frame. Ramis always seemed on the verge of laughing out loud, as if he'd just remembered a favorite joke.
That sense of amusement at all the ridiculous and silly curves this crazy life could throw a person saturated his work from the beginning. He started his career as a joke editor for Playboy, a job description that seems like a punch line.
That particular brand of nonsense was never more famously on display than in 1984's "Ghostbusters," which he co-wrote with Dan Aykroyd.
Ramis was never a traditional critic's darling, but he was always entertaining. He would make you laugh. Even his last film, 2009's "Year One," a clumsy caveman comedy starring Jack Black and Michael Cera, still delivered sight gags. I dare you to look at Cera in animal skins and not giggle.
There is a certain symmetry that Ramis, who died at 69 on Monday, would spend his final days in Chicago. It was where he was born and where he would hone his comic sensibility as a member of Second City's famous improv theater group, with its rich legacy as both a home and a launching pad for the talented and the funny. Second City would help push him from the improv stage into other mediums, starting with the cult comic hit "SCTV."
For a time, Ramis was head writer of the TV show that specialized in parodying other shows. So it made perfect sense when Ramis began directing an occasional episode of NBC's "The Office," the last time in 2010. After that, he mostly faded from sight to fight the disease that would eventually take him.
It really couldn't be more fitting that his movie breakthrough came as one of three writers of 1978's "National Lampoon's Animal House," with its tawdry teasing of frat-boy culture and the power of outsiders to upend convention. Nearly everyone has a favorite scene; a certain mayor's daughter being pushed along in a shopping cart is mine.
A long line of "loser" comedies continues the tradition to this day. And though a college campus may not be the setting each time, there are always lessons to be learned and mirth to be had at the expense of the staid.
Part of the filmmaker's appeal is because Ramis was a populist at heart. Films like "Caddyshack," "Groundhog Day," "Multiplicity," "Analyze This" in 1999 and "Analyze That" in 2002 were easy to enjoy. Ramis' wit was more of the Three Stooges variety; there wasn't much of a mean streak.
A nod to past glory, Italy's 'The Great Beauty' vies for Oscar
Italian director Paolo Sorrentino vies for an Foreign Language Oscar at this year's awards (image courtesy Reuters)
By Eric Kelsey
As Oscar voting enters the homestretch, "The Great Beauty" gives an historical nod to the Italian films that have made the nation the most successful winner of best foreign-language film.
The ambitious and visually stunning drama directed by Paolo Sorrentino recalls the likes of Federico Fellini's half-century old "La Dolce Vita" and "8 1/2" in its portrayal of Rome's high society and an artist's existential dread.
"Fellini was undoubtedly a great influence on me," Sorrentino said through an interpreter from Rome before his departure for the March 2 Academy Awards in Los Angeles.
"I tried not to imitate him but it is likely that it is still deeply ingrained in my subconscious," he added. "There are similarities. However, today's world is different, and therefore my film is also very different."
Fellini himself won the foreign-language Oscar four times, the most of any director in that category.
"The Great Beauty" has been tipped by Oscar prognosticators as the frontrunner for the statuette as it vies against Denmark's "The Hunt," Belgium's "The Broken Circle Breakdown," Cambodia's "The Missing Picture" and the Palestinian Territories' "Omar."
Do Christians care if 'Noah' movie jibes with the Bible? Survey says ... yep
Promotional movie poster for the new movie 'Noah' (image courtesy Paramount)
By Hollie McKay
Paramount Studios has poured an estimated $125 million into the production of "Noah," casting big names like Emma Watson and Russell Crowe, and trusting their baby to Oscar-nominated director Darren Aronofsky. But six weeks ahead of its theatrical release, concern is brewing that the flick may not be popular with Christians at the box office.
Faith Driven Consumer – a movement connecting Christian consumers with companies compatible with a biblical worldview – issued the results of an online survey, first published in Variety, that indicated a whopping 98 percent of faith-driven consumers are "unsatisfied with (the) Bible-themed movie which strays from Biblical message." The report suggested that "Noah" could thus face "commercial challenges."
"We gave participants a strong contextual understanding, and many found that the point-of-view the film seems to take is significantly different than what is in the Bible," Faith Driven Consumer founder Chris Stone told FOX411, adding that his intention was not to tell Hollywood what type of film they should or shouldn't make. "98 percent indicated this did not meet their needs. This doesn't mean they're mad at the film, it just doesn't appeal to them."
According to Stone, the information about "Noah" presented to those participating in the survey included press reports about a focus group's reaction to an early cut of the movie, as well as "Noah" trailers and marketing materials.
Stone said the survey got more than 5,000 responses.