All posts by JoJo

Joseph Jo is a filmmaker and a writer. He is currently a freelance writer for WatchMojo.com and a film judge for two major film festivals.

Mickey Rourke will star in the upcoming boxing drama ‘Tiger”

Mickey Rourke, once a former boxer who entered the movie industry during the 1970s, made news back in 2014 when he decided to go back into the ring which got an unfavorable publicity for being rigged…but it seems he’s back into the movie biz with his upcoming film Tiger.

The boxing drama is currently in production in Hamilton, Ohio. Inspired by a true story of Pardeep Nagra, a once soccer player who was kicked out due to anger issues, but later picked up by a boxing coach, Frank Donovan, only to be barred from boxing due to his beard, which takes another battle outside the ring but inside the courtroom.

The film will star Mickey Rourke (Wrestler, Nine 1/2 Weeks) as Frank Donovan, the boxing coach, with another notable star Janel Parrish (Pretty Little Liars) along with local extras and crews from Hamilton, Ohio. The film is directed by Alister Grierson, notable for Sanctum and Kokoda: 39th Battalion.

No date have been confirmed, but it is scheduled to release in 2016.

Memento will get a remake by AMBI Pictures

AMBI Pictures, the international group who has a dozen of films produced with renown stars with multiple awards on their shelf, has green-lit the project of remaking Christopher Nolan’s Memento.

Back in September 4 of this year, AMBI Group unveiled their new deal that acquired the rights to 400 titles after the acquisition of the Library of Exclusive Media Group. The library agreement involves 400 titles such as Begin Again, Cruel Intentions, Donnie Darko, End of Watch, Ides of March, Memento, and the Sliding Doors. AMBI also has control of Exclusive Media Group projects that are in active development along with sequels and remake rights.

Andrea Lervolino and Monika Bacardi, the producers of the AMBI Pictures have announced they will finance and produce Nolan’s early masterpiece that starred Guy Pearce (L.A. Confidential, Hurt Locker) and Carrie-Ann Moss (Matrix).

When Memento was released back in 2000, it was nominated for best screenplay as well as editing, but above all, the director/writer Christopher Nolan gained mass attention who eventually went on to direct the Dark Knight series right after. In a statement, Bacardi said, “Memento is a masterpiece that leaves audiences guessing not just throughout the film, but long after as well, which is a testament to its daring approach. We intend to stay true to Christopher Nolan’s vision and deliver a memorable movie that is every bit as edgy, iconic and award-worthy as the original. It’s a big responsibility to deliver something that lives up to the mastery of the original, but we are extremely excited and motivated to bring this puzzle back to life and back into the minds of moviegoers.”

Anticipated Movies of 2015 Still Yet to be Released

The year 2015 has been a very exciting year for all the film-goers.

Avengers: Age of Ultron, Mad Max: Fury Road, Inside Out, Furious Seven, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Ex Machina, Ant-Man, Southpaw, Sicario, The Martian, The Man from U.N.C.L.Eand Jurassic World.

Although some films didn’t live up to its expectations and bombed at the box office, just looking at some of titles above we’ve got to acknowledge that going to the theaters this year was worth our time. But with two months still remaining, the list just got better with some of the most anticipated movies of 2015 still yet to be released.

The 33

13 November 2015

Based on the real event of the mining disaster in San Jose, Chile, this story is about the 33 minors that were trapped for two months.

Secret In Their Eyes 

20 November 2015

Based on Juan Jose Campanella’s 2005 novel El secreto de sus ojos, this is a remake of the 2009 version. Remakes have always been shunned, but seeing the director, Billy Ray,  who is more notable for his screenplays than directing, we’re not sure how this film will deliver.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – part 2

20 November 2015

The second of the two cinematic parts based on the novel Mockingjay. Although this is the fourth and final installment of the The Hunger Games film series, rumors have it that there could be possible sequels or prequels.

Legend

20 November 2015

At this rate, Tom Hardy himself could become a legend. Playing as identical twin gangsters Reggie and Ronnie Kray, this film tells the story of these two notorious criminals of the 1960s in London.

 

Creed

25 November 2015

Rocky Balboa is back, but this time he will be training Adonis Johnson, the son of his friend and former boxing rival Apollo Creed.

The Good Dinosaur

25 November 2015

Brought to you by Pixar along with Disney as the distributor, The Good Dinosaur will be Peter Sohn‘s first feature film. Prior to this directorial debut, he is notable for voice acting for The Incredibles (2004)Ratatouille (2007), and Monster University (2013).

Hitchcock/Truffaut

4 December 2015

In 1962,  Alfred Hitchcock the “Master of Suspense,” and the French director Francois Truffaut had a week long conversation, in a room with no windows at the Hollywood office, which eventually became a seminal book, “Hitchcock/Truffaut.”

Macbeth

4 December 2015

William Shakespeare’s epic tragedy is once again back on the big screen with this time Michael Fassbender in the title role and Marion Cotillard as Lady Macbeth.

Youth

4 December 2015

The two veteran actors, Michael Caine, and Harvey Keitel will star in this new drama under the Italian director, Paolo Sorrentino, known for The Great Beauty (2013) and This Must Be the Place  (2011), where it explores the eternal struggle between age and youth, past and future, life and death, commitment and betrayal.

Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens

18 December 2015

Joy

25 December 2015

David O. Russell will return to the theaters with his usual cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, and Robert De Niro. This biographical film depicts the life of a single mother building a business empire after creating the Miracle Mop.

The Revenant

25 December 2015

Last year’s Academy Award winner for best director, Alejandro González Iñárritu, has stirred up the crowd with his new upcoming The Revenant. Being shot with all natural lights with amazing backdrops, Leonardo DiCaprio himself has gone a long way to create the most authentic atmosphere by sleeping in animal carcasses, eating a raw bison liver, and swimming in and out of frozen rivers.

Pope Francis Biopic ‘Call me Francesco’ Gets Vatican World Premiere

Pope Francis Biopic ‘Call me Francesco’ Gets Vatican World Premiere

On December 1 the Pope Francis biopic, Il papa della Gente or Call me Francesco, will have its world premiere at Vatican City before hitting 700 Italian theaters on December 3 according to The Hollywood ReporterThis new biopic is scheduled to screen at the Paul VI audience hall where papal audiences are held.

Based on the bestselling book “Francisco. el Papa de la gente” by Evangelina Himitian — a journalist with Buenos Aires newspaper La Nacion — the film will star Rodrigo De la SernaThe Motorcycle Diaries (2004), as the former Buenos Aries bishop and Sergio Hernandez,  Gloria (2013)as the Holy One in the later years.

The film has been directed by Daniele Luchetti with a reported budget of $12 million over the span of 15 weeks of shooting in Argentina, Germany and Italy. Luchetti is notable for his La nostra vita (2010) which was nominated in 2010 at the Cannes Film Festival.

Call Me Francesco depicts Jorge Maria Bergoglio’s (Pope Francis) path of Jesuit Priest years to the unprecedented life of becoming the 266th Catholic Pope of the 3rd millennium. The director has described the film to be a “human and spiritual adventure,” presenting the Pope’s hardship of living under Argentina’s dictatorship while fulfilling his vocation prior to his pontifical election.

The film is produced by Pietro Valsecchi’s TaoDue, handling the international sales, while Medusa is distributing in Italy.

Samus Aran Appears in a Short film “Metroid: The Sky Falls”

 

New Fan Made Metroid Film is Released on the Internet. And is Amazing

The gaming community is undergoing a moment of frenzy with the release of Metroid: The Sky Falls, a short film about Samus Aran, a fan favorite video game character that has made multiple appearances on Nintendo’s Metroid and Super Smash Bros. series. 

Rainfall, the Los Angles production studio that released the Wonder Woman short film back in 2013 with over five millions viewers, has presented what many fans of the Metroid game franchise and sci-fi viewers had hoped for. The visual effects are nothing of a high budget standard, yet the story is flawlessly captivating throughout the short film.

Directed by Sam Balcomb with Jessica Chobot (Nerdist) and America Young, watch the new Metroid: The Sky Falls below:

 

Could this be a new path to a blockbuster release of video game franchises? Nintendo recently announced that they will start making movies again, although they completely bombed with the Super Mario Bros. back in 1993.

Just beginning of this year, there were rumors about Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda being developed into an animated series by Netflix. But this has neither been confirmed nor denied by both Nintendo and Netflix.

With this whole super hero trend saturating the theaters, it’s possible the studios are now aiming at video game franchises to seek future productions. If that’s the case, let’s seriously hope for movie similar to this Metroid short.

And, yes, Samus Aran in Metroid is a female and that is awesome.

Netflix Secures deal to stream “Star Wars VII,” but only in Canada

Disney just helped Canada become “one of the places to visit,” for next year.

Just two months away from the theatrical release of the new Star Wars film, the only “new” discussion is the new deal that has allowed Netflix subscribers in Canada to stream Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens eight months after the theatrical release.

Disney’s new multi-year licensing deal with Netflix that started in 2015, has agreed to release titles from Disney Live Action, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm, Disneynature and DreamWorks Studios.

Although in the U.S., there hasn’t been a deal between Netflix and Disney about Star Wars VII, on the bright side, starting on January 1, 2016, there is a possibility to release all the previous Star Wars films. This is similar to a deal that was struck last month with Disney and Fox to screen the Star Wars franchise through Tencent, one of China’s biggest social media company. This is to promote and create interest of the franchise ahead of the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

As of now, Netflix Canada is the only country that has obtained the streaming rights to the new film, but according to a Netflix representative, negotiations are still ongoing for other parts of the continent.

Power Rangers Movie Unveils its Black Ranger

The Power Rangers welcomes Ludi Lin as the Black Ranger.

When Lionsgate announced the new Power Rangers film was being rebooted back in 2014, everybody was postulating who will be the lucky stars to wear the tight spandex.

First member to announce to the public via twitter was Naomi ScottThe Martian (2015) — who will play as Kimberly Hart the Pink Ranger. Soon afterwards, Dacre MontgomeryFamily Tree (2011) — was announced as the Red Ranger.  Ludi Lin who’s known for Monster Hunt (2015) and Marco Polo the TV series (2014) will give what could possibly be his first biggest performance on screen.

It seems apparent that the new reboot is swaying away from casting big stars, but so far the 90s live action children’s television show is keeping up with a diverse cast — or is it too early to make that statement? We still have two more rangers to go, blue and yellow.

It’s really too early to make any assumptions toward the cast, but the new announcement of the Black Ranger as Ludi Lin has stirred some discussion whether it was appropriate to cast an Asian actor. Ironically, when the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers TV show was aired, it was criticized for the choice of color in relations with the cast, having the black actor (Walter Emanuel Jones) as the Black Ranger and (Thuy Trang) as the Yellow Ranger.

Dean IsraeliteProject Almanac (2014) — is set to direct what he describe the the movie as a “mature but still playful,” that was penned by Ashely Miller and Zack Stentz. The move is scheduled to release on January 13, 2017.

“Ben-Hur” Remake delayed for August 2016

“Ben-Hur,” the new historical epic drama has been delayed for six months from its original date, February 2016 to August 2016. Currently in post-production, “Ben-Hur” is instead scheduled to release with a list of other summer blockbuster films.

Back in 2014, Paramount Pictures and MGM announced that the two studios will help co-produce a new “Ben-Hur” with Mark Burnett and Roma Downey. Burnett and Downey are known for creating the miniseries “The Bible” along with producing “Son of God,” which all together adds up to why the two were willing to take on the this vehement task.

Adapted from Lew Wallace’s novel, “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ,” the upcoming remake was written by Keith Clarke and the Oscar-winning writer John Ridley, acclaimed for the “12 Years a Slave” (2013) screenplay. The film stars Jack Huston as the eponymous character with the Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman as one of the lead characters that aids Ben-Hur on his mission.

This celebrated tale of the Jewish Prince Judah Ben-Hur has been adapted multiple times over the span of almost a century, with the first picture released back in 1925. But the most critically acclaimed adaptation was directed by William Wyler which the film won an imposing 11 awards out of the 12 Oscar nominations. All the pressure is on Timur Bekmambetov the director of the upcoming remake whose notable films are  “Wanted” (2008) and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” (2012).

It is interesting to see a wave of biblical epics returning to big screens. Back in 2014, Paramount worked with Darren Aronofsky’s “Noah” and within the same year Ridley Scott’s “Exodus: Gods and Kings” was released. It appears movies goers are in for a treat with super hero films and biblical epics being the latest trend from Hollywood.