Brian Helgeland

Brian Helgeland

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'Legend' UK film premiere

Brian Helgeland , Guest - 'Legend' UK film premiere held at the Odeon Leicester Square - Arrivals at Odeon Leicester Square - London, United Kingdom - Thursday 3rd September 2015

Brian Helgeland and Guest
Tom Hardy and Brian Helgeland
Brian Helgeland

The World Premiere of 'Legend'

Brian Helgeland - The World Premiere of 'Legend' held at the Odeon Leicester Square - Arrivals at Odeon Leicester Square - London, United Kingdom - Thursday 3rd September 2015

Brian Helgeland

Legend - First Look Trailer

Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, London was at the mercy of the terrifying Kray twins (Tom Hardy). Reggie Kray was forced to spend most of his life holding back his identical twin brother, Ronnie, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. As acclaimed night club owners and feared gangsters, the two twins were seen to own London, and lived a life of glitz and glamour, as well as blood and brutality. That is, until Detective Superintendent Leonard "Nipper" Read (Christopher Eccleston) took the task of bringing two of the most powerful and dangerous criminals in the city's history to justice, by any means necessary. 

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Does Tom Hardy Have What It Takes To Play The Krays?

Tom Hardy Brian Helgeland

English actor Tom Hardy is in talks to play both Ronnie and Reggie Kray in Brian Helgeland’s new film about the lives of the notorious twins. Legend will look at the relationship between the brothers, who are the most infamous British gangsters and have become an emblem of the East End.

tom hardy kray twins Does handsome Hardy have what it takes to play the Krays?

Ronnie and Reggie established the 1960’s criminal organisation, The Firm, but were also well-known on the London social scene for owning nightclubs and associating with celebrities. After the high profile murder of Jack “The Hat” McVitie the twins, along with fifteen other Firm members, were arrested and put into custody. With the pair locked away many more witnesses came forward, and the twins were eventually jailed in 1968. They spent the remainder of their lives behind bars. Ronnie Kray, who was the younger of the twins by a mere ten minutes, was certified insane and lived out his days in Broadmoor Hospital.

Continue reading: Does Tom Hardy Have What It Takes To Play The Krays?

Tom Hardy In Talks to Play Not One, But Two Kray Twins in 'Legend'

Tom Hardy Brian Helgeland

Tom Hardy is apparently in talks to play both of the legendary Kray Twins in an upcoming thriller, ‘Legend’, written and directed by the Oscar-winning L.A Confidential scribe, Brian Helgeland, Screen Daily have revealed. The highly in-demand Hardy is reportedly considering Legend amongst a host of other leading roles as the actor’s career continues to go from strength to strength.

Tom HardyTom Hardy has the pick of many interesting roles

The film - which will follow the identical twin brothers and their illegal activities London circa 1950-60 - is currently in development with production due to start in the UK later this year. Last year, at a Writer’s Guild of America event in LA in October, Helgeland opened up on the project, divulging that that the film would centre on the life of Reggie Kray, the older twin – by 10 minutes – as he attempts to control his younger twin.

Continue reading: Tom Hardy In Talks to Play Not One, But Two Kray Twins in 'Legend'

42 Review


What could easily have been a sentimental slog is given a spark of intelligent wit by writer-director Helgeland (A Knight's Tale). This is the story of an iconic figure from American sport who had a massive impact on society at large, and Helgeland focusses on the elements we can most readily identify with while quietly stressing how important and, yes, inspirational this story is.

In 1945 post-War America, most states still have segregation laws on the books, and black baseball players are sidelined in their own league. But Brooklyn Dodgers owner Branch Rickey (Ford) wants to break this barrier, and drafts Jackie Robinson (Boseman), making him the first black player in the Major League. Jackie is a determined, principled young man who struggles to hold his tongue in the face of blatant bigotry. But he gets help from Branch and team manager Leo (Meloni), and support from his equally feisty wife Rachel (Beharie). There's also a young black journalist (Holland) who works with him to further both their causes. But it takes Jackie a little longer to win over his teammates.

The film portrays endemic racism as the hideously ugly thing it is: socially accepted cruelty and prejudice. In truth, it was probably a lot worse than shown here, but we certainly don't miss the point. Especially since this kind of abusive language is never heard in today's politically correct climate. And Helgeland also creates complex characters who can't be tagged as heroes or villains, played with cheeky energy by a very strong cast. Boseman oozes charisma in the central role, undercutting what could be a too-saintly characterisation with sensitivity and steeliness. And Ford shines in a rare character role as a cantankerous old guy who simply won't take no for an answer.

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42 - Jackie Robinson's Story is Finally Told [Trailer & Pictures]

Chadwick Boseman Harrison Ford Brian Helgeland

Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson in Brian Helgeland's 42
Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson in Brian Helgeland's 42

Starring Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey and Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson, 42 tells the story of two men’s brave stand against prejudice, which forever changed the game of baseball. The New York Times described it as: “An inspiring, old-school biopic that doesn't pull any punches in depicting the ugly racism that Jackie Robinson faced on a daily basis as the first African-American player in Major League Baseball."

Watch the trailer for 42 here!

Continue reading: 42 - Jackie Robinson's Story is Finally Told [Trailer & Pictures]

42 Trailer

42 is the true to life story of Jackie Robinson and his rise to the top as one of America's best and most respected Baseball players and the manager of Brooklyn Dodgers, Branch Rickey, who decided to end racial segregation by enlisting Robinson onto his team.

Brian Helgeland ("L.A. Confidential") comes the real-life drama "42," starring Chadwick Boseman ("The Express") as Jackie Robinson and Oscar¸ nominee Harrison Ford ("Witness") as Branch Rickey.

In 1947, Branch Rickey controversially made a name for himself when he signed Jackie Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers. At the time, this kind of behaviour was unheard of, and both Robinson and Rickey were sure to cause problems for themselves - both on and off the pitch. Racism was rife between player on every team including the Dodgers and Robinson's transition was one of the most courageous of its time. 

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'42 The True Story of an American Legend' Los Angeles premiere at TCL Chinese Theatre

Brian Helgeland - '42 The True Story of an American Legend' Los Angeles premiere at TCL Chinese Theatre - Los Angeles, CA, United States - Tuesday 9th April 2013

Los Angeles premiere of '42' held at the Chinese Theatre

Brian Helgeland and Family - Los Angeles premiere of '42' held at the Chinese Theatre - Arrivals - Hollywood, California, United Sates - Tuesday 9th April 2013

Brian Helgeland

Los Angeles Premiere of '42'

Director Brian Helgeland - Los Angeles premiere of '42' held at the Chinese Theatre - Los Angeles, California, United States - Tuesday 9th April 2013

Brian Helgeland

Robin Hood Review

Ridley Scott and his usual Oscar-winning crewmates turn the familiar old English legend into a robust, thumping epic. The pacing is a bit uneven, but it keeps us thoroughly engaged.

Robin Longstride (Crowe) fought alongside King Richard (Danny Huston) in the crusades but returned to England under shady circumstances with two of his archer buddies (Grimes and Doyle) and a beefy fighter (Durand). Heading to Nottingham to honour an oath, he meets Sir Walter (von Sydow) and his feisty daughter-in-law Marian (Blanchett), who are being squeezed out of their land by the Sheriff (Macfadyen). But there are bigger problems, as Godfrey (Strong) marauds through the country with an army of French goons, plotting to steal the country from the vain new King John (Isaac).

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Green Zone Review

Based on Rajiv Chandrasekaran's true account Imperial Life in the Emerald City, this film never pauses for breath throughout a story set in the weeks following the 2003 invasion of Baghdad. It's provocative, involving and utterly gripping.

Miller (Damon) is a military officer charged with locating weapons of mass destruction, but every site he visits is a dead end. When he voices doubts about the intelligence, he gets in trouble with the Pentagon chief (Kinnear).

On the other hand, the CIA director (Gleeson) is sympathetic, and encourages him to dig around. So with the help of a local translator (Abdalla), Miller dives in. And he's quickly caught between two factions in his own government as he searches for an Iraqi general (Naor) in hiding.

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Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant Review

Based on the books by Darren Shan, this film is an introduction to a franchise, with the coloned title and preparatory storyline. It has a lively, engaging plot that keeps us engaged, even if it is yet another vampire romp.

Darren (Massoglia) is an A-student 16-year-old whose best pal Steve (Hutcherson) keeps getting him into trouble. When they hear about the underground Cirque du Freak, they can't resist a visit. There they meet ringmaster Mr Tall (Watanabe), bearded seer Truska (Hayek) a snake boy (Fugit), monkey girl (Carlson) and many more. But soon they're entangled with the show's star, vampire Crepsley (Reilly), and his mortal enemy Mr Tiny (Cerveris). And when Crepsley makes Darren a vampire, Steve gets so jealous that he joins the other side.

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The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 Review

Adapting a steely 1970s hit into a glossy 21st century blockbuster, Tony Scott indulges in his usual flashy pyrotechnics, which almost cover up the gaping craters in the plot. He also encourages his cast to really go for it.

Walter (Washington) is working at the dispatch desk for the New York Subway when crazed gunman Ryder (Travolta) hijacks the Pelham 123 and demands a huge ransom, or else he'll start killing passengers. Ryder refuses to talk to the know-it-all terrorism expert (Turturro), so Walter is pressed into service as a negotiator while the mayor (Gandolfini) gets the cash together. But Ryder and his goons are serious about this and, as the body count grows, the clock is ticking.

Director Scott and writer Helgeland aren't known for their subtlety, and this film is all whizzy style that's more about pure entertainment rather than establishing any actual suspense or character tension. The whole film is a collection of crashing edits, freeze frames, countdown graphics, loud sound effects and cheesily hysterical dialog. In other words, it's great fun. And it gives the cast plenty of scenery to chomp on--especially Travolta, who shows no mercy as he snarls and spits out every line.

Since this is a film about a Subway carriage sitting still in a tunnel, Scott keeps the camera moving at all times. He also manages to throw in a crazed car chase and loads of big crashes for no real reason, as well as orchestrating a painfully contrived reason to get Washington in on the gun-waving action. Not to throwing in several rather overwrought back-stories. By the end, the film has turned into a full-on Die Hard movie, complete with over-the-top violence and some real brutality.

Amid the fabulously enjoyable actors, it's Gandolfini who walks off with the movie using sardonic understatement. The whole film is pretty hilarious, although this clearly wasn't the intention. Scott zooms past plot holes like a runaway train; we barely have time to say "Huh?" before the next bit of action mayhem assaults all our senses. There's not a moment of actual suspense, but it's so big and outrageous that we can't help but hold on for the ride.

Continue reading: The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 Review

Brian Helgeland

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