Looks like Disney’s got another winner up its sleeve! Following Zootopia, Big Hero 6, and Frozen is Moana, the first Disney film to star a Polynesian princess. 16-year-old Moana, voiced by newcomer Auli’i Cravalho, is about to embark on an exciting adventure of self-discovery across the vast Pacific. The official logline reads:
From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes “Moana,” a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli’i Cravalho) meets the once-mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity.
This is merely a teaser trailer, and it already looks and sounds great. Moana is directed by the filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker, the same duo behind such Disney classics as The Little Mermaid and Aladdin. Original music and score is provided by Opetaia Foa’i, Mark Mancina (The Lion King), and Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton). The song featured here sounds a little familiar, does it not?
Ahead of its next major release in The Secret Life of Pets, Illumination Entertainment–the makers of Despicable Me and Minions–is previewing Sing, the animation studio’s next picture that’s got a remarkable voice cast. Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, Seth MacFarlane, Scarlett Johansson, John C. Reilly, Taron Egerton, and Tori Kelly, just to name a few. Together they’ll be singing over 85 hit songs, some of which are included in this first official teaser. A detailed synopsis follows.
Set in a world like ours but entirely inhabited by animals, Sing stars Buster Moon (McConaughey), a dapper Koala who presides over a once-grand theater that has fallen on hard times. Buster is an eternal optimist—okay, maybe a bit of a scoundrel—who loves his theater above all and will do anything to preserve it. Now facing the crumbling of his life’s ambition, he has one final chance to restore his fading jewel to its former glory by producing the world’s greatest singing competition.
Five lead contestants emerge: A mouse (MacFarlane) who croons as smoothly as he cons, a timid teenage elephant (Kelly) with an enormous case of stage fright, an overtaxed mother (Witherspoon) run ragged tending a litter of 25 piglets, a young gangster gorilla (Egerton) looking to break free of his family’s felonies, and a punk-rock porcupine (Johansson) struggling to shed her arrogant boyfriend and go solo. Each animal arrives under Buster’s marquee believing that this is their shot to change the course of their life.
Blue Mountain State. You might have missed this under-the-radar comedy series back when it aired on Spike from 2010-11. It was rather swiftly cancelled after airing three 13-episode seasons. In fact, I almost carried on with my life without acknowledging its existence because on its surface (hell, through and through), it’s a crude show about the stereotypical college experience following football players and all the immature mayhem that ensues (read: partying, drugs, alcohol, hazing, sex…I think you get the point). But man am I glad I actually gave this thing a shot. BMS‘ creators and executive producers Chris Romano and Eric Falconer are just the right amount of twisted and they managed to concoct a hysterical exaggeration of a football-dominated college. Though the wacky characters don’t have much depth, the hijinks they take part in are just grounded in reality that it makes Blue Mountain State required viewing for incoming college freshman nationwide.
Moving on to the story at hand! Ever since its abrupt cancellation in 2011, BMS fans have been clamoring for new material, including a new season and/or a movie. Following a successful Kickstarter campaign created by Falconer, BMS will return on the big screen. In total, 23,999 backers pledged $1,911,827 to support the sitcom’s anticipated comeback. Lionsgate is distributing the film with an expected launch into theatres sometime this year. Worried about BMS‘ envelope-pushing nature not translating well? Don’t be. Falconer has shared to Kickstarter backers that the MPAA originally slapped an NC-17 rating on his movie, but after some tweaks he was able to lower that to a R-rating for “strong crude and sexual content, drug use and language throughout, and some graphic nudity.” Sounds like BMS to me!
Here’s what we know. The movie is called Blue Mountain State: The Rise of Thadland and it will follow senior year at BMS as Thad Castle (Alan Ritchson) prepares to enter the NFL. Darin Brooks and Chris Romano reprise series protagonists Alex Moran and Sammy Cacciatore, and you can expect the rest of the ensemble cast to make appearances throughout. Preview The Rise of Thadland in a first-look clip embedded after the break. A full trailer and release date are expected to drop soon, so stay tuned. READ MORE ‘Blue Mountain State’ gets Kickstarted into feature length film (Teaser inside!)→
“I want to assemble a task force of the most dangerous people on the planet who I think can do some good. And if anything goes wrong we blame them; we have built in deniability. Getting people to act against their own self-interest is what I do for a living.” That’s Viola Davis (How to Get Away with Murder) channeling her inner Annalise Keating, and succinctly summing up the premise for DC’s upcoming super-villain flick Suicide Squad.
The all-star lineup includes Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flag, Jai Courtney as Boomerang, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, Karen Fukuhara as Katana, Jay Hernandez as El Diablo, Adam Beach as Slipknot, and of course Jared Leto is the Joker. David Ayer (End of Watch, Fury) writes and directs.
It’s a relatively quiet trailer, until Leto’s Joker comes out to play. “Oh, I’m not gonna kill ya. I’m just gonna hurt ya really, really bad.” Wouldn’t want to be on the other side of that interrogation. For a first look teaser, it hits all the right notes; I’m all in.
Illumination Entertainment, the maker of Despicable Me and the upcoming Minions movie, has a new animated comedy in the works about the lives our pets lead after we leave for work or school each day. The first teaser trailer, embedded above, does a fantastic job of setting the scene featuring Illumination’s slick animation style and signature humor. An overarching plot isn’t being divulged just yet, but that doesn’t even matter–The Secret Life of Pets is sure to draw audiences of all ages to its adorable collection of cats and dogs and video game savvy birds. The stacked voice cast includes Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart, Ellie Kemper, Lake Bell, Jenny Slate, Bobby Moynihan, Hannibal Buress, and Albert Brooks.
Today at the Star Wars Celebration convention in Anaheim, California, director J.J. Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy unveiled the latest teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Tons of fans present at the event exploded in excitement over the new one minute fifty-nine second teaser, and now you can too; go on, don’t hesitate, mash play above and let all of its glory wash over you! Done? Watch it again.
A few things to note. That is original Star Wars star Mark Hamill providing voice-over during the first half of the teaser; his lines are directly plucked from Return of the Jedi when he’s revealing to Leia that Darth Vader is his father. “The force is strong in my family,” says Hamill’s Luke Skywalker. “My father has it. I have it. My sister has it.” The line that comes next is new: “And you have the power, too.” We’re left to assume here that Luke is talking to a next-generation Skywalker in The Force Awakens, but neither Abrams nor Kennedy would confirm. Seeing Darth Vader’s utterly maligned helmet here is a striking image that I know will sit with me for some time.
What else? Referring to the desert world that made its debut in the first teaser, Abrams confirmed it is not Luke Skywalker’s home of Tattoine, but instead an entirely new world called Jakku. These expansive, beautiful sequences were filmed in the deserts of Abu Dhabi.
The latter half of the panel introduced new franchise stars Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, and Oscar Isaac. Respectively they play a scavenger named Rey, a Stormtrooper named Finn, and an X-Wing pilot named Poe Dameron. Though plot details are still being tightly kept under wraps, Abrams allowed each of them to briefly let some character details fly.
“We discover Rey on the desert planet Jakku,” Ridley shared with the crowd. “She is a scavenger in a ship graveyard. She’s completely self-sufficient and does everything for herself, until she meets another character and an adventure begins.” Boyega picks up and says, “When we find Finn, he’s in incredible danger. The way he decides to react changes his life and launches him into the Star Wars universe in a unique way.” Issac goes on to describe Dameron like this: “He’s the best fricking pilot in the galaxy, that’s who he is! He’s been sent on a mission by a certain princess. He comes across Mr. John Boyega’s character and their fates are forever intertwined.”
Making fun surprise appearances today were R2-D2 and the new droid BB-8. Though The Force Awakens admittedly uses lots of green screen for its special effects, Abrams reiterated his film’s reliance on practical effects and BB8 is a prime example of that. “We talked about how having a CGI BB-8 would be easier,” Abrams noted. “But we thought it would be better for the actors and the performances to have the real thing.” The director is taking a cue from Star Wars creator George Lucas’s playbook here; the original trilogy took advantage of robotics and advanced puppetry to pull off some of the most inventive and impressive stunts in cinematic history. Sounds like J.J. is on board with that, too. Watch BB-8 in action on stage right here.
The trailer ends with perhaps the most exciting bit yet: Han Solo and Chewbacca return in fleetingly grand fashion and ignite the nostalgic part of our collective brains. “Chewie, we’re home,” Han positively snarls, which is then followed by the lovable Wookiee’s signature roar. Though Han’s portrayer Harrison Ford wasn’t on hand at the event, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Anthony Daniels, and Peter Mayhew showed up to express their ultimate gratitude for the generations of passionate Star Wars fans. “I have a simple message: a simple thank you,” Hamill gushed. “If it weren’t for all the UPFs—Ultra Passionate Fans—we wouldn’t be here. It never ceases to amaze me.”
Despite a last-second reception that will go down in history as one of the best, the Seattle Seahawks lost to the New England Patriots in an exciting, nail-biting Super Bowl that ended with a final score of 28-24. Now that the game’s over, instead of analyzing Russell Wilson’s downrightbarbaric decision to throw the ball instead of run it into the end zone for an easy touchdown, let’s take a look at some of the most memorable commercials that aired between the gameplay. A whole bunch of them, including the buzziest movie and TV trailers, are posted after the break.
20th Century Fox is rebooting the Fantastic Four franchise with a more youthful cast, just as Sony Pictures did with Spider-Man in 2012. Miles Teller (Reed Richards / Mr. Fantastic:), Michael B. Jordan (Johnny Storm / Human Torch), Kate Mara (Susan Storm / Invisible Woman), Jamie Bell (Ben Grimm / The Thing), and Toby Kebbell (Victor Domashev / Doom) are the Marvel superhero film’s stars this time around. Josh Trank (Chronicle) directs. Here’s the current logline:
Fantastic Four, a contemporary re-imagining of Marvel’s original and longest-running superhero team, centers on four young outsiders who teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe, which alters their physical form in shocking ways. Their lives irrevocably upended, the team must learn to harness their daunting new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy.
Fox (and Marvel for that matter) have been uncharacteristically quiet about this film which has a summer release date. Rumors about creative difficulties aside, this is very much a teaser that doesn’t do much in the tantalizing department. We’re briefly introduced to the updated cast and we get a strong monologue about the human desire to discover spoken by Reg E. Cathey who plays Dr. Storm. But there’s nothing here that truly amps me up, unfortunately. It looks and feels like your run-of-the-mill superhero flick–but maybe that’s because the box office has been flooded with them as of late. Who knows. Of course I have faith in Marvel, as well as Chronicle helmer Trank whose work on that film was surprisingly risky and rewarding. Here’s to hoping a beefier full-length trailer adds some oomf to this lackluster first look.
The new Fantastic Four (whose title is actually stylized like this: Fant4stic, ugh) releases August 7 in 3D.
Following cheeky ant-sized and human-sized previews, Marvel finally unleashed the first teaser trailer for its next standalone superhero movie: Ant-Man. Paul Rudd stars as Scott Lang, a thief, who will don a suit granting him the power to drastically decrease in size and increase in strength and making him the Ant-Man. The first trailer gives us a first look at Rudd in the aforementioned suit; we also get to see him get around on the back of a flying insect (honey, I shrunk the Anchorman actor!). Starring alongside Rudd are Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, and Corey Stoll. Ant-Man releases July 17.
Pixar’s latest movie, Inside Out, will take audiences inside the mind. Emotions such as Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness serve as the film’s main characters. The first teaser trailer, embedded above, features mostly a look back at Pixar’s greatest hits but it is tagged with the following synopsis that provides more plot detail:
Growing up can be a bumpy road, and it’s no exception for Riley, who is uprooted from her Midwest life when her father starts a new job in San Francisco. Like all of us, Riley is guided by her emotions – Joy (Amy Poehler), Fear (Bill Hader), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith). The emotions live in Headquarters, the control center inside Riley’s mind, where they help advise her through everyday life. As Riley and her emotions struggle to adjust to a new life in San Francisco, turmoil ensues in Headquarters. Although Joy, Riley’s main and most important emotion, tries to keep things positive, the emotions conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house and school.
Looks like fun! Inside Out hits theatres in 3D on June 19, 2015.
Disney and Disney-owned Marvel are teaming up for the next Walt Disney Animation Studios film. The next film on Disney animated slate, following Frozen, is Big Hero 6. The movie, inspired by the Marvel comics, goes like this:
“Big Hero 6” is a heartfelt comedy adventure about robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada, who learns to harness his genius—thanks to his brilliant brother Tadashi and their like-minded friends: adrenaline junkie Go Go Tamago, clean freak Wasabi No-Ginger, chemistry whiz Honey Lemon and fanboy Fred. When a devastating turn of events catapults them into the midst of a dangerous plot unfolding in the streets of San Fransokyo, Hiro turns to his closest companion—a cutting-edge robot named Baymax—and transforms the group into a band of high-tech heroes determined to solve the mystery. Inspired by the Marvel comics of the same name, and featuring comic-book style action and all the heart and humor audiences expect from Walt Disney Animation Studios, “Big Hero 6” is directed by Don Hall (“Winnie the Pooh”) and Chris Williams (“Bolt”), and produced by Roy Conli (“Tangled”).
Check out the nearly two-minute teaser trailer above. Though it doesn’t set up the plot, it manages to successfully introduce our main characters in a very fun way. In fact, this teaser reminds me of the initial Frozen teaser which introduced audiences to snowman Olaf and reindeer Sven in a playful way.
Big Hero 6 hits theaters in 3D on November 7, 2014.
First up is the very NSFW red-band trailer for Movie 43, a raunchy comedy that brings together the most unlikely group of actors under the same roof. The large ensemble cast includes familiar funny people like Elizabeth Banks, Kristen Bell, Anna Faris, Johnny Knoxville, Justin Long, Jack McBrayer, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Chris Pratt, Emma Stone, Jason Sudeikis, and Seann William Scott. Also thrown into the mix? A-listers such as Halle Berry, Richard Gere, Terrence Howard, Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Naomi Watts, and Titanic‘s Kate Winslet. So yeah.
Though the trailer doesn’t make it crystal clear, you will probably infer that Movie 43 consists various comedic vignettes. These segments were written by Rocky Russo, Jeremy Sosenko, Patrik Forsberg, Will Carlough, and James Gunn and they were received direction from a wide range of directors and even actors: Patrik Forsberg, Peter Farrelly, Elizabeth Banks, Steven Brill, Steve Carr, Rusty Cundieff, James Duffy, Griffin Dunne, James Gunn, Brett Ratner, and Bob Odenkirk (Saul from Breaking Bad!).
The highly inappropriate flick is lining up to be a hysterical laugh fest. It releases January 25.