Friday, 25 October 2013

Future Film Friday: The Bone Season

I've been itching to write about The Bone Season for ages, and after the news this week that it has been acquired by 20th Century Fox and Chernin Entertainment, now feels like a better time than ever to indulge my excitement.

TBS is set in Scion London, a futuristic citadel, where 19-year-old Paige is working as a dreamwalker, amongst the criminal underworld. After losing control of her power, she is kidnapped and taken to Oxford (now known as Sheol I) and held captive by the mysterious Arcturus Warden, part of the Rephaim (all these words will make sense if you go read the book - I urge you to!), who is an intriguing character all of his own, and she learns how to hone her rare talent and use it to her advantage. My synopsis doesn't do the story half the justice that it deserves but it is a truly fascinating journey into a new world, and I can't remember being this excited by a fantasy novel since the Harry Potter series, which many critics have indeed been drawing comparisons to. Other than the fact that it will be a 7-part series, that's really where the similarities end, and it's an injustice to both to say they are similar.  The Bone Season is a stand-out story all of its own.

Just to give a little further background to this, the author, Samantha Shannon, is ridiculously young at 21 (I know, she makes me feel like a failure too), and the film rights were snapped up almost immediately by Andy Serkis's The Imaginarium.

There is so much that I am looking forward to about this film, but cannot list without giving away too many big plot points, however even just to see how they interpret the mythical land of Sheol I, and the casting choices for the various characters is keeping me going - I am mostly intrigued to see who they pick for Warden, who, despite finding him wildly attractive, I cannot for the life of me conjure up what I imagine him to look like. I have a worried feeling that they'll pick someone like Cumberbatch for it, and (IMO) he wouldn't be right at all, but ultimately the decision lies with Shannon, and it is her vision that I am so excited to see come to life.

NB. I recommend following the author herself for any further info -

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Lloydy's round-up: Awkward Grimm Merchant in Avatar Land

Notable things this week...

Hello Ladies
I went to see Stephen Merchant's first stand-up show a couple of years ago and I can honestly say it was the most fun I've ever had at a comedy gig (and I always enjoy stand-up).  I spent the evening caught up in that kind of laughter when you know you look like a wailing hyena but you're laughing too much to care.  The first episode of the sitcom of the same name premiered this week (AFTER the US, grumble grumble) and and I was both excited and intrigued to watch it - intrigued because I just wasn't sure how it would translate into a script, but so far so good!

A Tale Dark & Grimm

Henry Selick is the master of films that both creep you out whilst making you feel warm and safe all in one.  The Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach were both staples of my childhood (although I've never gotten over that evil rhino cloud).  He is currently working on two wonderful sounding films - A Tale Dark & Grimm - Hansel and Gretel stumbling into other Grimm fairy-tales and The Shadow King  - a stop motion film that tells the story of Hap, an orphan with unusually long fingers who learns to utilize them to make shadows that eventually go into battle with shadow monsters.  Sounds like the most magical film I will ever see, quite frankly.

That Awkward Moment

After the success of Hairspray and 17 Again, I had high hopes for the career of Zac Efron. They may have still been light-hearted, fun films but he proved he was an actor worth his salt, and not just a pretty teen idol with nothing behind the eyes.
He's certainly picked varied and sometimes controversial roles since then, but none have really lit the Oscars alight, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but it just means that therefore many of them haven't even made any waves this side of the Atlantic.
His newest choice interests me however, because it's so simple.  The Awkward Moment seems very laddy.  In fact, it looks to me to be the male equivalent of He's Just Not That Into You.  All that taken into consideration, I think this is a good step for Efron. He does comedy very well and whilst probably a bit predictable, it looks fun and I definitely want to watch it (nothing to do with the nudity, what... I didn't even know there was nudity!)

Avatar Land - Animal Kingdom

It looks beautiful!

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Lloydy's round-up

Couple of things that have caught my attention this week...

New American Hustle trailer
The teaser trailer did the rounds a while back and now the full official trailer for the much-anticipated American Hustle has arrived. A reunion for the Silver Linings Playbook dream team of David O. Russell, Bradley Cooper, J-Law and De Niro, along with the addition of Christian Bale and Amy Adams, makes for what could likely be a worthy Oscar-contender. And even if all else fails, it's still the most impressive array of hairstyles that I've seen for a while.

Jim Henson's Creature Shop Challenge

Syfy announced earlier in the week that they have given the go-ahead to a new Muppet reality show - surely no greater type of show -which will oversee competitors vying for a job in Jim Henson's Creature Shop, participating in challenges ranging from creating "everything from hand puppets to large-scale theatrical creatures".  This sounds AWESOME, I love Syfy and I LOVE The Muppets (Beaker ftw). I honestly cannot wait for this to start, WHY HASN'T IT ALREADY STARTED??

The Mean Girls Musical Update

According to Tina Fey's husband (he is scoring the musical) there are currently five songs in development, including an "October 3rd" song and a "Fetch" song, but they are struggling with how to portray the Christmas scene (Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell Rock... it is an iconic scene after all). Otherwise it sounds like it's coming along nicely, which I am very pleased about.

Earlier in the week I saw Prisoners, so expect a review in the next couple of days.  I'm also really looking forward to Alfonso Cuaron's Gravity and the LFF opener Captain Phillips opening over the next couple of weeks. Watch this space!

Friday, 11 October 2013

Future Film Friday: Battle of the Biopics

It's been a while since I've watched a good biopic, and it's a genre that is so hard to get right.  However there's a few in the pipeline that I can't help getting excited for...

The Musician One

I've been a huge fan Elton John since I was very young, having grown up listening to my parent's albums and falling in love with his songs such as Sacrifice and I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues, the latter has stayed a firm favourite my whole life. Therefore, this is the one I am MOST excited about, indeed I'm probably more excited about this than any other biopic in history.

'Rocketman' is still in the very early stages of pre-production but the film will follow Elton's life, from Reginald Dwight's childhood, through to the icon that we know today. Tom Hardy is currently touted for the lead , and whilst I am sure that the role is more than safe in his hands, I can't help but have my own favourite...

The Author One

Much of Theodor Geisel's work are already familiar to cinema-goers, but much less is known about the life of Dr Seuss.  The author, poet and cartoonist had a rich story of his own, interweaving with his work as a political cartoonist during WWII. Johnny Depp is producing the film and will likely take the lead in this. No release date is known as of yet, but it will be truly fascinating to see the man behind all those stories that we know and love.

The Athlete One
I'll be honest, with Bradley Cooper in the lead role, I would be excited about this film regardless of the content.  However, this is one film that I know I am not alone in eagerly anticipating.

The whole world was stunned when Lance Armstrong was charged with doping offences and stripped of his many titles.  Armstrong had been an inspiration to so many, battling testicular cancer and coming out the other side a hero.  Red Blooded American is certainly going to be one emotional movie.