When I exclusively reported earlier this month that Millennium Films was planning a massive stunt with the cast of The Expendables 3 storming the Croisette today, I had a feeling it would be rather extraordinary — but I didn’t know it would end up to be one of the most entertaining events I’ve attended in 17 years in Cannes. The action brigade rolled into town this morning – on tanks no less – giving throngs of onlookers something to gawk at, and journalists inside a packed press conference the hourlong thrill of seeing mega-franchise stars riffing on everything from their advancing age to the state of today’s action films, how their competitiveness has waned from the ’80s and why this movie will be PG-13. “We are children with arthritis, we are young forever,” said writer- star Sylvester Stallone to great applause when he was asked how he and his cronies will know when it’s time to hang it up on actioners. He added, “I think if you wake up in the morning and your ass falls off, it’s time to retire.”
For now, the franchise isn’t eyeing retirement. It has made about $580M at the global box office so far. But both of the first films were rated R. This one is going out PG-13. Stallone explained, “We want to reach as many people as possible. It’s very close to an R, believe me, it’s right there. But I think we owe it to the next generation. We thought we’d join that club for a while.”
Related: Cannes: Sly, Arnie, Mel & More To Storm Croisette For Mega ‘Expendables 3′ Event
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EXCLUSIVE: In one of the greatest assemblages of international star power — and muscle — that Cannes has ever seen, a baker’s dozen of Expendables 3 castmembers are set to hit town on Sunday, May 18 for a full day of events. Attending are Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas, Dolph Lundgren, Kelsey Grammer, Randy Couture, Kellan Lutz, Victor Ortiz and Glen Powell, along with director Patrick Hughes. Millennium Films president Mark Gill tells me the day will start with a screening of footage from the movie, followed by the action brigade arriving at the Carlton Hotel for a press conference and photo call. How will they get there? Why, in tanks of course! Millennium, which is organizing the testosterone fest, is seeing that a stretch of the Croisette is shut down to accommodate the armored vehicles. At the Carlton, it’s also bought banners representing each of the characters which will adorn the façade. Later that evening, there will be a big soirée at the Palm Beach nightclub.
Cannes is habitually used as a platform to launch and promote Hollywood movies off the red carpet, but in recent years the studios have cut back on … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Patrick Schwarzenegger has been cast in Scouts Vs. Zombies, the Paramount genre mash-up that will be directed by Christopher Landon. Schwarzenegger, son of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver, here plays the popular high school quarterback who is a rival to the boy scout troop. Tye Sheridan, Logan Miller, Joseph Morgan and David Koechner also star. Andy Fickman, Todd Garner, Bryan Brucks and Betsy Sullenger are producing. Shooting is set to begin May 8.
Patrick can next be seen in the Kevin Connolly-directed Dear Eleanor opposite Josh Lucas, Jessica Alba, Liana Liberato and Isabelle Fuhrman. He is repped by Management 360 and Bloom Hergott.
There are few other celebrities that are more closely associated with The Tonight Show With Jay Leno than Arnold Schwarzenegger. One of Leno’s favorite guests, Schwarzenegger visited the show a whopping 27 times. He even broke every rule in politics by announcing his run for Governor of California on Leno’s late-night talker. Schwarzenegger’s loyalty to Leno went beyond The Tonight Show — he also guested twice on Leno’s short-lived primetime NBC talk show. From 1985-91, Schwarzenegger frequented NBC’s Late Night With David Letterman, making three appearances there before Leno took over The Tonight Show. It’s been all-Leno since — 29 visits with him vs. one each on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, Late Night With Conan O’Brien when it visited Los Angeles, Jimmy Kimmel Live and The Daily Show zero on David Letterman’s CBS show, O’Brien’s Tonight Show or CBS’ Craig Ferguson.
With Leno gone, Schwarzenegger was up for grabs, especially with The Tonight Show moving to New York. Schwarzenegger is the quintessential Californian, from his humble immigrant beginnings as a bodybuilder on Venice Beach to becoming a Hollywood star to serving as Governor of California. With Leno gone, Kimmel, whom Schwarzenegger visited five years ago, became the top late-night draw in Los Angeles. But in his first late-night appearance following Leno’s departure, Leno stuck with The Tonight Show, in its new New York locale and with its new host, Fallon. That is a pretty big coup … Read More »
Arnold Schwarzengger stars in Open Road’s actioner as the leader of an elite DEA task force that takes on the world’s deadliest drug cartels. One by one, team members mysteriously start to be eliminated and it’s up to Schwarzenegger to find out who’s killing his men. David Ayer’s Sabotage also stars Sam Worthington, Terrence Howard, Joe Manganiello and Josh Holloway. Pic hits theaters on March 28. Check out the red band trailer:
EXCLUSIVE: It’s official. Emilia Clarke will play Sarah Connor in the Terminator reboot, re-teaming with director Alan Taylor, who has worked with Clarke in the HBO series Game Of Thrones. Clarke joins Jason Clarke, who is in negotiations to play her son John Connor in a storyline I’ve heard involved a trip into the future. Deadline revealed that he was in talks earlier this week. Arnold Schwarzenegger is also back in his signature cyborg role.
This was a hotly contested role and it came down to Clarke and Brie Larson. Both actresses tested for the producers at David Ellison’s Skydance and Megan Ellison’s Annapurna, and Paramount, which will release the film in July 2015. Clarke’s breakout role came in Thrones, where she plays the dragon-commanding heroine Daenerys Targaryen in that massive HBO series, and is probably the most sympathetic of all vying to rule. She started as a shy sister of an annoying king brother, but has demonstrated the mettle to capably play one of the screen’s most formidable heroines as originated by Linda Hamilton in James Cameron’s first two films in the series. She’s repped by CAA and Emptage Hallett in the UK.
Related: Megan And David Ellison Will Each Pay 33% Of ‘Terminator’ Costs; Paramount Paying The Rest To Bring Arnold Back
EXCLUSIVE: The Terminator reboot is getting more interesting by the minute. Jason Clarke, so good in Zero Dark Thirty, is in early talks to play the role of John Connor, the leader of the rebellion against the Skynet artificial intelligence system bent on wiping out the human race. This comes as Game Of Thrones star Emilia Clarke emerges as the frontrunner to play Sarah Connor (with Brie Larson also in the mix) for Thor: The Dark World helmer Alan Taylor. Arnold Schwarzenegger is also expected to reprise his signature cyborg role in a film that involves time travel into the future.
Terminator: Genesis is being spearheaded by Skydance Productions’ David Ellison, who is teamed with Megan Ellison’s Annapurna in the effort. Paramount has signed on to distribute, and has set a July 1, 2015 release date. Annapurna purchased the rights for over $20 million and the expectation is that they will be able to make at least two films before certain copyrights revert back to the property’s creator, James Cameron. Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier wrote the script. Read More »
Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s return to big-screen actioners has been steady but slow, with January’s The Last Stand grossing $12.1M domestically and last month’s Escape Plan — with Sly Stallone and directed by Mikael Hafstrom — faring a bit better at $24.3M and counting. But those still feel like Arnold is warming up in the bullpen with new Conan and Terminator pics in the wings. However, next up for him is David Ayer‘s Sabotage, from QED and Open Road Films and due April 11. Schwarzenegger is doing his thing as the leader of an elite DEA task force that busts a big cartel and then deals with the payback, but Ayer’s stylish flair for action and a cast that includes Sam Worthington, Mireille Enos, Terrence Howard, Joe Manganiello and Olivia Williams makes this pic the most intriguing of the lot so far. Here’s the trailer that just dropped – you tell us if you think he’s getting into fighting shape:
EXCLUSIVE: Universal Pictures has taken a step forward on the reboot of The Legend Of Conan, which will bring Arnold Schwarzenegger back as the brawny king. The studio has closed a deal with Andrea Berloff to write the script. Best known for scripting World Trade Center, Berloff most recently adapted the French action film Sleepless Night for Warner Bros. She also wrote Straight Outta Compton for New Line and is writing a retelling of the King Arthur myth for Disney.
Related: Universal Reboots ‘Conan’ Franchise With Schwarzenegger
The franchise got a fresh start last October, when Universal and Schwarzenegger got involved, largely because of the passion of Chris Morgan, the scribe/producer who has minted money at the studio writing Fast & The Furious films. He was the one who decided to draw a parallel right back to the original raw, violent Conan films, which ended with the image of the barbarian king sitting atop his throne. The new film is about his efforts to stay there and the final cycle of a life spent obliterating anyone who got in his way. The Legend Of Conan is being produced by Fredrik Malmberg through Paradox Entertainment and Morgan & Emile Gladstone through their Chris Morgan Productions banner. Paradox owns the rights to the Robert E. Howard series, and we’re going to have to give them a mulligan on that ill-advised movie done with Jason Momoa. They are going back to Schwarzenegger, whose career as Hollywood’s top action star was launched by the 1982 Conan The Barbarian, which John Milius directed from a visceral script he wrote with Oliver Stone. Read More »
Thor 2 director Alan Taylor is in talks to helm Terminator, the franchise relaunch from Paramount, Skydance Productions and Annapurna Pictures. Three pics are planned to star Arnold Schwarzenegger, with the first one set for release June 26, 2015. Taylor made his mark in TV with credits including Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire and Nurse Jackie. The Marvel sequel Thor: The Dark World comes out November 8. Variety first reported the talks.
Related: Emilia Clarke Cast In ‘Terminator’ — ‘Game Of Thrones’ Actress To Play Sarah Connor
EXCLUSIVE: The Vladar Company and health & fitness publishing co. American Media Inc. will pump bodybuilding docu Generation Iron into limited release in several markets on September 20, a week ahead of this year’s Mr. Olympia muscle competition. Pic, directed and written by Vlad Yudin with narration by Mickey Rourke, follows seven of the top bodybuilders in the world as they train and compete for the coveted title. Seven-time Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger makes an appearance in the docu as do Lou Ferrigno, Jay Cutler, and strongmen Phil Heath, Kai Greene, Branch Warren and Dennis Wolf. Generation Iron is produced by The Vlader Company’s Yudin and Edwin Mejia, who also tapped Pumping Iron producer Jerome Gary to executive produce.
RELATED: Megan And David Ellison Will Each Pay 33% Of ‘Terminator’ Costs; Paramount Paying The Rest To Bring Arnold Back
Paramount has confirmed the long in the works deal to cofinance and distribute the reboot of James Cameron’s Terminator franchise creation. Highbrow picture maker Megan Ellison spent over $20 million for the rights in 2011, and the project didn’t go very far. Things finally started percolating when Megan Ellison and her Annapurna Pictures joined forces with brother David Ellison, whose Skydance Productions has a deal with Paramount and makes popcorn movies. Avatar’s Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier have been working on the script for months. Arnold Schwarzenegger returns as the title character and the hope is to get at least two movies done before North American copyright reverts back to Cameron, who might want a fortune or might want to retire the franchise. Here’s the announcement:
Skydance Productions, Annapurna Pictures and Paramount Pictures have jointly announced they will partner on a rebooted “TERMINATOR” movie, to be released by Paramount Pictures on June 26, 2015.
The first in a stand-alone trilogy, “TERMINATOR” will be produced by Megan Ellison of Annapurna and David Ellison of Skydance. Dana Goldberg and Paul Schwake of Skydance will serve as executive producers. Laeta Kalorgridis (“Avatar,” “Shutter Island”) and Patrick Lussier (“Drive Angry”) are attached to write the screenplay.
Launched in 1984 with star Arnold Schwarzenegger as the title character, “TERMINATOR” spanned 3 subsequent films, which have earned over
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Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger are still expendable in Summit‘s October 18 actioner Escape Plan (formerly The Tomb). This time they’re beefing up the action behind bars. Sly stars as an expert prison breaker trapped in a high tech facility of his own design who attempts escape with the help of Schwarzenegger’s grizzled convict. Mikael Håfström directs from a script by Miles Chapman (Road House 2) and Jason Keller (Machine Gun Preacher). Here’s the first trailer:
Related: Stallone & Arnold In ‘The Tomb’ (PHOTO)
The erstwhile Governator continues his showbiz renaissance playing a father helping his daughter comes to terms with her slowly becoming a zombie. Variety reports that Arnold Schwarzenegger will star in Maggie, based on the Black List script by John Scott 3. Henry Hobson will direct the unusual take on the zombie-apocalypse genre. It starts shooting in the fall.
EXCLUSIVE DETAILS: A spate of reports of movement on The Terminator franchise is a good sign that the franchise is finally starting to percolate again. I’ve learned that each Ellison — David and Megan, both scions of Oracle chief Larry Ellison — will finance 33% of the film’s budget, with Paramount finding the remaining third. Arnold Schwarzenegger himself said yesterday during an appearance in Sydney that he’s coming back and the movie will start shooting in January. None of this is really a surprise: Back in December, Megan Ellison, who’d spent $20 million to buy The Terminator sequel rights during 2011 Cannes, partnered on the franchise with her brother David. She makes prestige films and he makes popcorn fare like Star Trek and Mission: Impossible sequels, so the union made sense. The Wrap claimed an exclusive that Paramount would be the distributor. Well, through Skydance Productions, David makes all his movies with Paramount, so it was kind of obvious the films would likely land there. Skydance and Paramount are just coming through the gigantic ordeal of making World War Z, which, despite a massive budget, looks like it will do some serious global business.
As for Schwarzenegger, he’s been attached since back in May 2011, when Megan Ellison beat out Lionsgate and paid around $20 million for the franchise. She bought it from Pacificor, which had paid $29.5 million to pull the property out of bankruptcy. The latest rumor is that Megan Ellison would make a hail mary pass attempt to draft her Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow. That would be a coup, but it’s being denied, which means either that it’s not true, or Bigelow passed already. The project has been director-less since Fast 6‘s Justin Lin bowed out of the project when it was being developed solely by Megan Ellison. I met Lin at Sundance and he made it clear he wouldn’t return because he was not involved in the development of the script. Ellison in January hired Avatar and Shutter Island‘s Laeta Kalogridis and My Bloody Valentine‘s Patrick Lussier to write the script, so it stands to reason that the film should be ready to shoot by early next year. Read More »
SUNDAY AM 2ND UPDATE: The big news is that washed-up Arnold Schwarzenegger flopped in 10th place playing a washed-up lawman in The Last Stand (2,913 theaters). “Nobody wants to see Arnold,” one rival studio exec giggled to me. Lionsgate should demand its money back from Arnie who clearly can’t open a movie anymore even with a ‘B’ CinemaScore from audiences. Pic made only a pathetic $6.7M for the 3-day weekend and no more than $7.7M for the 4-day holiday. I don’t think that even covers Schwarzenegger’s cigar bill. The actioner featuring The Guvernator’s first solo comeback to the big screen was just one of the major releases that opened for the long Martin Luther King holiday weekend. Saturday’s business “was shockingly good,” execs told me, once again demonstrating that the theatrical business is kicking butt with audiences even if Arnold isn’t. Bombing as well was Emmet-Furla/New Regency’s critically panned dramatic thriller Broken City (2,620 theaters) breaking Mark Wahlberg’s long string of box office hits. Also starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Russell Crowe (thankfully, not singing) and distributed by Fox, it debuted only #5 and finished with a sorry $9.5M for the 3-day weekend and $10.9M for the four day holiday. That star power should have generated at least $25M for the MLK weekend with its ‘B’ CinemaScore from audiences.
No question that Universal’s supernatural thriller Mama (2,647 theaters) - “presented” by Guillermo Del Toro to lend it credibility – debuted #1 Friday and stayed tops through Monday with an overperforming $28.1 … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Skydance Productions and Annapurna Pictures have set Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier to script the next installment of The Terminator franchise.
Her credits include Avatar, Shutter Island and Alexander, produced White House Down. Lussier scripted Wes Craven’s Dracula and directed My Bloody Valentine. Skydance’s David Ellison recently hired the scribes to write an original scifi adventure film, with an idea initiated by Skydance. Megan Ellison paid a fortune for the rights several years ago, and recently teamed with brother David, whose company finds big ticket action films like Terminator to be in its wheelhouse. David, who just produced Jack Reacher, had the relationship with the scribes, though interestingly Kalogridis also is tight with Terminator creator James Cameron. Megan Ellison is in the thick of the Oscar race with Zero Dark Thirty and The Master.
Open Road Films will release Ten, the David Ayer-directed action thriller starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, nationwide on January 24, 2014. Schwarzenegger leads an elite DEA task force that takes on the world’s deadliest drug cartels. When the team successfully executes a high-stakes raid on a cartel safe house, they think their work is done — until, one-by-one, the 10 members mysteriously begin to be eliminated. Joe Manganiello, Sam Worthington, Harold Perrineau, Terrence Howard, Max Martin, Josh Holloway, Olivia Williams and Mireille Enos co-star. Skip Woods wrote the original screenplay. QED International financed the pic; Bill Block, Paul Hanson, Joe Roth, Palak Patel and Al Ruddy are producers. Open Road released Ayer’s last pic, End Of Watch, in September.