Is there a part for Jesus in Bill & Ted 3?

billandtedIt’s been 25 years since Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure first graced our screens, and just a couple years less since the sequel Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey came along. The past decade has brought us long-delayed revivals of 1980s franchises like Die Hard and Indiana Jones, so naturally, many Bill & Ted fans have wondered if we’ll see a new film in this series, too — and co-stars Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter say they want to make it happen.

For now, they’re bogged down in script development and securing financing for the film. (One hiccup: the characters aren’t particularly popular overseas, and that’s where Hollywood makes its money these days.) But the actors have been quite open about their hopes for it. A few weeks ago, Winter said the film will revolve around a sort of mid-life crisis for the characters, who were supposed to bring peace and harmony to the world through their music but, so far, have not. And now, Reeves has spoken to ComingSoon.net:
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VIFF capsule reviews part three: Leviathan, The Fool, Still Life and Men, Women & Children

Today is the last day of the Vancouver International Film Festival, and I regret to say I didn’t catch as much of it as I’d hoped. Of the sixteen days that the festival ran, there were six when I simply didn’t make it into town, and on a few of the others I was lucky to catch a single film. But no matter. Here are a few more capsule reviews, one of which is for a film that will get a “repeat screening” over the weekend.

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Patti Smith talks to various Oscar bloggers about her Noah song ‘Mercy Is’ and why it no longer mentions horses

noah-pattismith5Noah may have come out seven months ago, but the people who worked on it are still talking about it — and in one case, they are doing so with a definite eye towards the upcoming Oscar season.

Patti Smith, who co-wrote a lullaby sung by Russell Crowe and Emma Watson in the movie, gave a few interviews this week to discuss the theme song ‘Mercy Is’, which plays over the film’s end credits. It was the first song she had ever written for a movie — so it is also the first song of hers to be eligible for an Academy Award.

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The thematic and visual links between Noah and Darren Aronofsky’s earlier films: a gallery

vlcsnap-2014-10-03-16h13m51s23The six films made by Darren Aronofsky to date all tackle different genres and subjects, but they also have some striking things in common.

For one thing, they have generally been made by the same creative team, including composer Clint Mansell (who has scored all six of Aronofsky’s films), cinematographer Matthew Libatique (who has shot all of Aronofsky’s films except for The Wrestler) and a number of recurring actors (such as Jennifer Connelly, Ellen Burstyn and especially Mark Margolis).

But the films also have some thematic overlaps. As I mentioned in my review of Noah for Books & Culture, Aronofsky films often dwell on the notion that it is impossible to touch perfection and survive. They also tend to revolve around characters who are obsessed with something, often to the characters’ detriment. And more often than not, they tend to make references to the Bible, some more pronounced than others.

And that brings us to Noah. When the film came out, a number of critics (such as The Playlist’s Drew Taylor) noted that the film had some striking parallels with The Fountain in particular. But it actually harks back — visually and thematically — to pretty much all of Aronofsky’s earlier films to one degree or another.

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National Geographic unveils the cast for Killing Jesus

killingjesusThe National Geographic Channel’s adaptation of Bill O’Reilly’s Killing Jesus is now filming in Morocco, and thanks to The Hollywood Reporter, we now know who many of the actors are — and they’re an eclectic bunch, to be sure.

In keeping with other recent efforts to depict Jesus as something other than a blonde-haired, blue-eyed European, the part of Jesus will be played by Haaz Sleiman, an actor born in Lebanon who is perhaps best-known for playing a Syrian immigrant in Tom McCarthy’s The Visitor.

Herod the Great, on the other hand, will be played by Kelsey Grammer, who doesn’t seem like a particularly Middle Eastern kind of guy to me. (The fact that he’s best known for his comedic roles on Frasier and The Simpsons doesn’t help!)

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VIFF capsule reviews part two: Mr. Turner, The Vancouver Asahi, Clouds of Sils Maria and Maps to the Stars

MrTurnerMr. Turner (UK/France/Germany) — Oct 8 @ 1pm @ Vancouver Playhouse

Mike Leigh is known for his kitchen-sink realism and his improvisational approach to screenwriting: he hires the actors, gets them to know their characters in detail, and then he collaborates with them on the story, or at least on the development of individual scenes. But once in a rare while he decides to tackle an actual historical subject — and the two films he has made in that vein so far both concern artists who lived and worked in the 19th century. [Read more...]


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