Newsbites: Noah! Christ the Lord! Nazareth! A.D.! Clavius!

vlcsnap-2014-10-03-16h10m29s238Happy Monday. Here’s a round-up of recent Bible-movie news (with pictures!) to help you start the week.

1. Darren Aronofsky, whose films have received serious Oscar buzz more often than not (Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler and Black Swan were all nominated for their acting, among other things, and the last of those films actually won), is still doing what he can to keep Noah on the Academy’s mind.

Last week he spoke to Variety about the excellent work that cinematographer Matthew Libatique, production designer Mark Friedberg, editor Andrew Weisblum, visual effects supervisor Dan Schrecker, composer Clint Mansell and, of course, Patti Smith contributed to the film; and tonight, Aronofsky and Smith will be hosting a screening of the film at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York.

[Read more…]

Noah: five new making-of videos mark the Digital HD release

The most controversial Bible epic of the year — so far — Noah came out on Digital HD today and is now available for purchase through several different streaming services.

As far as I can tell, none of these services include any bonus features except for iTunes — but the bonus features included with the iTunes package are not identical to the bonus features that have been advertised for the upcoming Blu-Ray.

The Blu-Ray will include three featurettes totaling over an hour, on ‘Iceland: Extreme Beauty’, ‘The Ark Exterior: A Battle for 300 Cubits’ and ‘The Ark Interior: Animals Two By Two’. The iTunes release comes with the first two featurettes but replaces the third with ‘Special Makeup FX on Noah,’ which just happens to be one of the featurettes that is rumoured to be on the exclusive Target edition of the Blu-Ray. The iTunes featurettes add up to almost 51 minutes of bonus content.

To mark the film’s digital release, Paramount released at least two exclusive clips to two websites today — and I have no idea at this point if these clips are taken from any of the existing bonus features, or if they are unique to these websites.

[Read more…]

Noah interview round-up: d.p. Matthew Libatique

I already have “interview round-ups” for director Darren Aronofsky and co-writer Ari Handel, so hey, why not one for cinematographer Matthew Libatique, who actually shot the images without which a film like Noah couldn’t exist?

Libatique went to film school with Aronofsky and has shot all but one of his feature films (the exception being 2008’s The Wrestler). Libatique even shot a couple of Aronofsky’s early short films!

Libatique has also worked multiple times with filmmakers like Spike Lee (She Hate Me, Inside Man, Miracle at St. Anna), Joel Schumacher (Tigerland, Phone Booth, The Number 23) and Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Cowboys & Aliens).

[Read more…]

Noah news round-up: a good first day in Mexico, the filmmakers talk about fear, grief, and literalism, and more

More good news for Noah from the foreign market: the film, which already had a strong opening in South Korea a couple days ago, had a similarly strong opening in Mexico yesterday. In both cases, the studio says the movie’s opening days were on par with the opening days for Gravity in those markets.

Several reviews of the film went online Thursday night (or Friday morning, if you live on the east coast) — you can read my own first review here — and it currently has a 73% score at Rotten Tomatoes.

[Read more…]

“Snakes? Why did it have to be snakes?”

That line was originally spoken by Indiana Jones as he went looking for the Ark of the Covenant. But I’m quoting it now because of a very different kind of Ark, namely Noah’s Ark.

Today, Matthew Libatique, the cinematographer on Darren Aronofsky’s upcoming Noah, tweeted the picture below, with a caption that said “Pre lighting on the holiest day of the year” — a reference to the fact that today is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, on the Jewish calender.
[Read more…]