MTV's first ever gender-neutral awards ceremony took place in Los Angeles on Sunday night, and it was a good evening for Brits in general.
Emma Watson picked up the first ever gender-neutral prize at the MTV TV & Movie Awards this weekend, as Beauty and the Beast emerged as the main winner of the night.
The ex-Harry Potter star, famous for her role as Hermione Granger, picked up the best big-screen actor award at the fan-voted ceremony in Los Angeles on Sunday night (May 7th). Her role as Belle has helped generate worldwide revenue of over $1 billion for Beauty and the Beast since its release just over a month ago.
Emma Watson won the first gender-neutral MTV award
Emma stars in The Circle with Tom Hanks
Based on the 2013 novel by Dave Eggers, The Circle is a dramatic thriller that explores themes of interconnectivity as a young woman (Emma Watson) takes a new job at a social network company, then becomes frightened of the effects of constant surveillance, clashing with the company CEO (Tom Hanks).
Emma Watson in The Circle
Watson says that the themes struck a real nerve for her. "The story and the questions that it raises," she muses, "I found myself pondering different aspects of it. And I think that's always a good sign for a story or something I might potentially work on. It doesn't leave you quickly."
Continue reading: The Circle Made Emma Watson Limit Her Social Media Contact
'The Circle' starring Emma Watson receives mixed early reviews.
The first reviews for James Ponsoldt's thriller 'The Circle' starring Emma Watson are here and it seems critical opinions on its premise are largely mixed. Based on the 2013 Dave Eggers novel of the same name, the movie is an exploration of how social media could so easily transform into a Big Brother society.
Emma Watson at the Tribeca Film Festival premiere of 'The Circle'
It's not an unusual storyline; indeed, the Orwellian themes have been repeated in multiple works of literature, film and television, but as society's obsession with online sharing via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram grows with each year, the ideas become more and more relevent.
Continue reading: Social Media Thriller 'The Circle' Divides Critics Ahead Of Release
The movie is set to be one of this year's most successful.
'Beauty And The Beast' continues to prove itself a box office juggernaut, now reaching and surpassing an incredible gross of over $1 billion worldwide. Directed by Bill Condon, the film provides a live action adaptation of the classic 1991 Walt Disney animated musical, and has been bringing in huge amounts of viewers since its release in mid-March.
Emma Watson as Belle in 'Beauty And The Beast'
The numbers come in ahead of the film's premiere in Japan - the last country to debut the movie over a full month after its initial release across the globe. With such impressive box office figures despite it not being fully available around the world, there's every chance that this figure could be hugely improved on moving forward.
Continue reading: 'Beauty And The Beast' Passes $1 Billion Worldwide
This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to give the story a photo-realistic sheen. The addition of more songs makes it feel much more like a big movie musical. And the use of real actors adds quite a lot of detail and subtext in the character interaction. But basically, this is still the same romantic fairy tale: lovely to look as it makes the audience swoon and sigh.
It's set in a French village, where Belle (Emma Watson) is looked at with suspicion by her neighbours for her empowered-female ways, reading books, expressing her opinions and running the farm where she lives with her single dad Maurice (Kevin Kline). It's no wonder that the vain soldier Gaston (Luke Evans) pursues her, since she's the only girl who isn't chasing him. Then one day Maurice and Belle have a fateful encounter with a castle hidden in a deep woods under a curse. Imprisoned by its beastly master (Dan Stevens), Belle befriends the staff, who have been transformed into household objects like a lampstand (Ewan McGregor), clock (Ian McKellen), teapot (Emma Thompson), harpsichord (Stanley Tucci) and feather duster (Gugu Mbatha-Raw). All of them conspire to help Belle fall in love with the Beast, which would break the spell.
Director Bill Condon (who made Dreamgirls and the final Twilight movies) makes the most of the live-action cast, allowing them to stir all kinds of undercurrents into their roles, which adds weight and interest to the rather predictable storyline. The film still looks largely animated thanks to an extensive use of digital backgrounds and characters, but the actors add an earthy tone that breaks the surface, bringing in some more textured emotions and sharper humour. The whole cast is excellent, with particular scene-stealing energy coming from Evans and Josh Gad (as his super-faithful sidekick LeFou), who are both funny and villainous at the same time. And Kline is also a standout for a surprisingly thoughtful performance.
Continue reading: Beauty And The Beast Review
There are no nude photos of Emma Watson. This sexist smear campaign needs to stop.
Emma Watson has been a public figure since she was 10-years-old, and she's always been smart enough to keep her personal life private. Aside from a smattering of boyfriends, her studies at Brown University and a vague notion of her spiritual affiliations, there's little anyone knows about the actress' private life.
Emma Watson continues to fight for women's rights as she is attacked over and over again
There's something deeply admirable about the 26-year-old's ability to stay out of the spotlight when she's not shooting or promoting a movie or working for UN Women, which makes it all the more upsetting for her when her personal accounts are hacked. For some reason, the bottom feeders of journalism are obsessed with trying to uncover incriminating or scandalous images of her - despite the fact that she knows better than to take any, or let any be taken of her.
Continue reading: What Is The Media's Obsession With Emma Watson And Nude Photos?
For some stars, aid work is their main purpose in life.
Part of being a celebrity means using your voice, your recognition and your wealth to make a difference in the world. It's almost an unspoken rule. But for some stars the likes of Angelina Jolie and Bob Geldof, humanitarian work almost becomes another career.
Whether it's poverty, disease, women's rights or climate change, there's always a major star out there using their popularity to raise awareness and money for it. Here are just a few of the world's most devoted celebrity humanitarians:
Angelina Jolie has visited some of the bleakest countries in the world
It had been reported that Watson and Miles Teller were originally set to star in the musical.
Emma Watson has cleared up the rumours about why she ended up not taking the lead role in La La Land.
In January it was reported that Watson had been the first choice for the role, but lost out because she had been ‘too demanding’, leading to Emma Stone getting the part.
But Speaking on SiriusXM's Town Hall radio show, Watson said the real reason she wasn’t cast was because of scheduling conflicts, due to her work on Beauty and the Beast.
Continue reading: Emma Watson Reveals The Real Reason Why She Wasn't In 'La La Land'
Watson says she doesn't want anyone to be able to track her whereabouts.
Emma Watson has explained why she no longer always says yes when fans ask for selfies.
The Beauty and the Beast star says that for her it’s the “difference between being able to have a life and not” and once someone snaps a selfie with her, people are immediately able to find her location.
Continue reading: Emma Watson Explains Why She No Longer Takes Selfies With Fans
She confesses she hasn't always handled things in the best way.
Emma Watson has confessed that even her tough old self found it extremely difficult to cope with the negative backlash that her HeForShe feminism campaign heralded, despite the fact that she knew the whole point was about people not understanding female oppression. Sometimes she didn't even want to get out of bed.
Emma Watson 'sulked' over HeForShe backlash
It's not always easy to find sympathy for gorgeous, wealthy superstars when they are going through a hard time, especially when they've never experienced financial hardship and they've had a particularly privileged education. But the 'Beauty and the Beast' star took a while to find the strength to continue when people started criticising her activism work, especially when she had taken a year out of her usual work to explore her humanitarian passion.
Continue reading: Even Emma Watson Sulks When People Keep Being Mean To Her
The 2013 Teen Choice Awards, held last night (11th August) saw the likes of the Twilight cast; Pretty Little Liars; The Vampire Diaries and Glee taking home a full sized surf board as a trophy.
The 2013 Teen Choice was held last night, Sunday 11th August, at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City. The event was star studded with attendees photographed on the red carpet including Selena Gomez, Lucy Hale, Brittany Snow, Michelle Rodriguez, Chloe Grace Moretz, Cher Lloyd and Naya Rivera.
Selena Gomez on the red carpet.
The Teen Choice Awards are an annual event held to celebrate what teenagers think deserves recognition from the world of film, TV, fashion and music. It was first held in 1999 and has gradually grown increasing popular with the passing years. This year, according to the Teen Choice Award Website, over 150 million teenagers voted on the various categories.
Continue reading: 2013 Teen Choice Awards: On The Red Carpet And Highlights
The diva has gotten rid of her famous locks in favour of the much shorter number, debuting the look on Instagram last night
Beyonce is the latest star to try out the ever-popular 'pixie' look, as the singer has chopped off her once flowing locks in favour of a much easier to handle look. The star uploaded a trio of images showing off her new look to her Instagram page yesterday (8 August) and since then it has been awash with comments from fans and onlookers, with some praising the new look as a revelation, whilst other think it is a major fashion misstep.
Beyonce showed off her new look on Instagram this week
The 'Crazy In Love' pop diva debuted the look on her Instagram, posting three un-captioned images of herself, but what is it about this new look that means so much? Usually when a star chops off their locks, it is done in a bid to reinvent themselves and cast off a previous image - ala Rihanna and Emma Watson - so is this new look a nod in the direction of her alter ego Sasha Fierce, or is this a new persona emerging from Bey? Maybe it has nothing to do with a statement at all, and after her near miss with an electric fan during a recent Toronto show, perhaps Bey just fancied something different when se last visited her hairdresser.
He won't be the one wielding the whips and chains.
Actor Garrett Hedlund has rejected the lead role in the adaptation of EL James' raunchy erotic novel, Fifty Shades of Grey due to being unable to commit to a trilogy. The movie, which has yet to cast a single role, is due for release in 2014 with the Nowhere Boy director, Sam Taylor Johnson, at the helm and the author herself as producer.
"Do I Really Want To Be Filmed Slapping Someone With A Paddle? Nah."
The Tron: Legacy actor had been reportedly hand-picked by the author herself to play the 27 year-old billionaire with a fetish for domination. However, the actor and boyfriend of Kirsten Dunst passed up on the opportunity to become the face of the biggest franchise since the series. A source speaking to US Magazine explained that "Doing a possible trilogy was too big a commitment, and producers wouldn't let him do just one film."
Continue reading: Garrett Hedlund Offered '50 Shades' Role By EL James, But Rejects It
Robert Galbraith's true identity was revealed by a British law firm. Russells Solicitors' law partner Chris Gossage revealed J.K. Rowling was the author of 'The Cuckoo's Calling'. The law firm has apologised 'unreservedly'.
J.K. Rowling was revealed as the woman behind pseudonym 'Robert Galbraith', the author of The Cuckoo's Calling, by a law firm leak. Despite Russells Solicitors' apology, Rowling is "disappointed" and "angry" that her trust was misplaced.
J.K.Rowling at the London premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.
The Sunday Times had gone in search of answers after suspicions were aroused by a literary analyst, who noted Galbraith's writing had similarities to Rowling's. They received confirmation of the author's true identity, it was revealed yesterday (Thursday 18th July), by a law firm Russells.
'Harry Potter' author, J.K. Rowling authored a crime novel under a pseudonym. 'The Cuckoo's Calling', before the author's unmasking, sold less than 500 copies. The author, following investigation by a British newspaper, admitted to having written the crime novel on Sunday (14th July).
J.K. Rowling, author of the hugely popular Harry Potter series, admitted she had published a detective novel under the pseudonym 'Robert Galbraith'. Her announcement was made on Sunday 14th July after a newspaper followed up on a hunch that the 'two' authors shared very similar writing styles. The novel, entitled The Cuckoo's Calling, was published in April of this year. Despite receiving critical acclaim the novel sold less than 500 copies.
J.K.Rowling at the London premiere of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in 2011.
One publishing house, Orion, has admitted their mistake in turning down the novel. The publishing director, Kate Mills, said Rowling's latest work was "perfectly decent, but quiet". She continued to say that it was "well written" but concerned that "it didn't stand out". Mills claimed this is a serious problem when attempting to launch "new authors" in crime fiction when it is already "a very crowded market".
Sofia Coppola's true-crime movie 'The Bling Ring' is out now in cinemas but the director has revealed how a real-life jewellery theft in Cannes could have provided some ironic publicity.
In The Bling Ring, the true events that saw a gang of celebrity-obsessed teens burgle the homes of stars in an attempt to emulate the glitz and glamour of Hollywood is brought to life on screen with a cast of Emma Watson (Harry Potter, The Perks of Being a Wallflower), along with a young, up-and-coming Katie Chang, Israel Broussard, Claire Julien and Taissa Farmiga who play the light-fingered youngsters.
Sofia Coppola's New Movie The Bling Ring Was Inspired By Real Events.
In an interview with the BBC, Coppola admits that it was a challenge to not bring fame to the real thieves through the notoriety brought about by her film's success. Alexis Neiers, the inspiration for Watson's character, Nicki has already gained some degree of fame after she was the subject of a reality TV program and a Bling Ring TV movie. Coppola's first step was to change the names of all the characters involved, speaking of the way she handled bringing the story to life without portraying the burglars as role models: "I had to make that world seductive so you understand what they're drawn to. They are kids trying on these identities - they haven't figured it out. I didn't want to make those kids more famous, I didn't want to celebrate what they did," she says, "We are bringing attention to it, but I don't think they'll be made into cult heroes."
The erotic novel has taken another step towards the silver screen and looks on course to actually see the light of day
50 Shades Of Grey just became the biggest movie event of summer 2014 that isn't about super heroes, with Universal announcing their plans to have the film out by August 1 2014. The film will be quite the change from Guardians of the Galaxy, the Amazing Spider-Man 2 and X Men: Days of Future Past, but with a director, script and now a release date all lined up, the much-discussed movie adaption looks like it might finally happen after all. Still no work on who will be in it though, but that's just details.
So we know when the movie should be out, and providing director Sam Taylor-Johnson can keep things on track as soon as we get our Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey, then things are looking good. Taylor-Johnson was chosen to take on directing duties earlier this month and her announcement behind the camera has obviously given the producers confidence enough to push forward and commit to a date for when we'll see it on screen. Relatively inexperienced as a director, Taylor-Johnson could prove a competent pick nonetheless having achieved praise for her only work so far; the John Lennon biopic Nowhere Boy.
Talylor-Johnson was Taylor-Wood before she met her husband, Arron Johnson [R], on the set of 'Nowhere Boy'
Continue reading: 50 Shades Of Grey Movies Gets A Release Date: The Story So Far
Comedies don't get much more self-referential than this film, in which a bunch of old friends get together and play themselves facing a biblical-style apocalypse. But they also don't get much funnier. Writing partners Rogen and Goldberg (Superbad, Pineapple Express) move into directing with this super-charged bromance that finds surprising resonance amid a constant barrage of vulgarity, in-jokes and end-of-the-world mayhem.
Rogen also stars as himself, happy that his childhood friend Jay is coming to visit him in Los Angeles. Jay prefers to live at home in Canada, far from the plastic L.A. scene, so Seth sets aside the first day with video games and lots of weed. Then they head to James' house for a starry Hollywood party, during which a series of massive earthquakes kills off most of the A-list guests. Seth, Jay and James survive, along with Jonah, Craig and Danny, and as they set up camp in James' mansion, their friendships are strained. Mainly because Danny eats their supply of food, Jay wants to go home, and Jonah is simply too nice to be believed. Until he's possessed by an angry demon.
The blinding array of cameos gives the film's early scenes a terrific kick, as big stars hilariously spoof their public personas before meeting a variety of fiery ends. An especially spiky Watson gets a few extra scenes of her own, while Cera has the most fun as a diva obsessed with sex and drugs. And Tatum gets the most jaw-dropping moment. But it's our six heroes who hold the film together, and their camaraderie adds a surprising warmth, most notably in the central bromance between Rogen and Baruchel.
Continue reading: This Is The End Review
Emma Watson recently opened up about consumption, celebrities and her modest wardrobe.
Emma Watson might have starred in The Bling Ring – a cross between a roast and a hedonistic celebration of consumption – but she’s not into that whole scene herself. Not according to her latest interview with New York Magazine’s The Cut, at least. In it, Watson criticizes celebrity culture, as portrayed in the film – and the consumerism that comes with it. She specifically talks about Paris Hilton, of whom the film also tries to make an example.
Despite the fashion sense, Emma Watson isn't your typical It-girl.
"She could never wear all of those clothes and half of them were brand new and still had the price tag on. But I suppose she just bought them to have them. We've all bought things on impulse but that's an entirely different thing ... It's almost like consumerism as a form of kleptomania," Watson says and explains how she keeps herself from that mindset: "I've got about eight pairs of shoes and that's it."
Continue reading: The Anti-Material Girl - Emma Watson And Her Eight Pairs Of Shoes
Seth Rogen reveals in an interview with 'The Vulture', that the end of 'This is The End' was changed to accommodate a "childhood dream".
Seth Rogen's comedy This Is The End did not use its intended ending. The script was changed in order to accommodate a cameo from 90's pop stars Backstreet Boys leading a sing-along dance to 'Everybody', their 1997 single.
Director and co-writer Evan Goldberg said the idea had come from an off-the-cuff suggestion from his wife on how to make the ending more interesting. Seth Rogen, who stars in the comedy, was determined to make the idea a reality.
The Backstreet Boys cameo was not exactly what the writers had planned as the original ending was meant to feature Morgan Freeman, reviving his role as God as in Bruce Almighty. Unfortunately the actor had no interest in participating in the project. Rogen was then adamant the Backstreet Boys should play a part especially, as he said in an interview with The Vulture, he is "the appropriate age" to remember when "Backstreet Boys were kings".
The Backstreet Boys are not the only celebrities to feature in this 'apocalyptic' comedy. In fact the whole film is one cameo appearance after the other. None of the actors are playing characters, merely portraying the public's perception of them.
Continue reading: Seth Rogen Reveals: 'This Is The End' Does Not Use Original Ending
Nobody can decide if it's satire or not, but everyone is still going to see it.
Much has been written about Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring ever since it made it'ss debut at Cannes. To say that its vapid, shallow and materialistic characters, obsessed with famous-for-being-famous celebrities, are oversimplified would be a valid criticism. But it is also vastly missing the point of the whole movie and what the characters represent.
The stars had an unexpected bonding session...
The Bling Ring sees Emma Watson, Katie Chang and Claire Julien play a trio of fame-obsessed, thieves who specialise in targeting celebs. To get ready for this, director Sofia Coppola had her leading ladies perform a fake break in.
"Sofia wanted us to do a bit of bonding so one thing we did is a fake break-in of a house," Chang explained. "We broke into someone's house that Sofia knew. "They knew we were coming, so we broke into their house and we stole a bunch of stuff and it was actually kind of fun," she added at the premiere of the ambitious film. "I totally messed up the whole thing, though, because I was given a list of things that we had to get and I forgot, like, two of them,” she admitted. "So when we got out of the house we were all proud at how fast it was for us to find all the stuff and then we were like, 'C**p, we have to go back in there now and find this other stuff!'".
The film represents a further departure for Watson, who has dedicated herself to more ‘grown up’ roles since her infamous turn as Hermione in the Harry Potter movies, something her co-star in the films, Daniel Radcliff has achieved with his work on stage.
Paris Hilton learned more about the robberies at her home from 'Bling Ring' director Sofia Coppola.
Paris Hilton says she learnt a few things about the infamous Bling Ring robberies on her home from director Sofia Coppola. The reality star heiress makes a cameo appearance in Coppola's new movie, based on the true story of how a group of San Fernando Valley youths robbed the homes of numerous high profile celebrities four years ago.
Though she was questioned by police about the thefts, Hilton says many of the facts about the robberies only came to light after she met with Coppola. "Sofia told me so many things I didn't know," Hilton, 32, told the Los Angeles Times at the Hollywood premiere on Tuesday evening. "I didn't know they tried to take my dog. I didn't know they were selling my things on Venice Boardwalk."
Hilton has been a prominent member of the promotional team for the movie and flew to the South of France to attend the Cannes Film Festival premiere last month, telling reporters the movie almost brought her to tears.
Event held at The Director's Guild last night (June 4, 2013).
If the critics believe that Emma Watson hasn't got it entirely right in the film The Bling Ring, then there was no denying that she at least managed to hit the highlights at the film's American premiere last night (June 4, 2013).
Watson looked phenomenal on the red carpet last night
The British former 'Harry Potter' star was looking divine as she wore a black and grey number with a high collar and high-waisted belt. The tweed Chanel dress has been taken from their Fall 2013 collection and you have to admit that she looked utterly stunning in it. Watson added to the look with black and silver Giuseppe Zanotti heels as well as a black clutch bag and ear cuffs. Swanky.
Continue reading: Emma Watson And Paris Hilton Light Up The Bling Ring Premiere [Pictures]
The actress is to resume the college course she left behind two years ago in order to pursue her acting career
Emma Watson has revealed that she is going back to college later this year, with the film star looking to complete her studies at Brown University this fall having put her education on hold to further pursue her acting career. The actress' return to the Ivy League college doesn't completely spell the end of her acting responsibilities though, with the Perks of Being A Wallflower actress already lined up for a number of roles in the near-future.
The star was speaking to Rookiemag.com when she announced her plans to return to education - having left the college following her second year in 2011 - so that she can finish her degree before going back to acting full-time. At the time of her departure from Brown, it was believed that the star left because of bullying from the other students, something that she vehemently denied whenever quizzed about it. She is now looking forward to finishing her degree and joining fellow A-List Ivy League college-graduates such as Natalie Portman and James Franco.
The actress seemed thoroughly excited about her return to Brown, telling the interviewer, "I really like the fact that [Brown] has a very open curriculum, that there aren't any requirements. Really, I've kind of been in charge of my own education since I started out on 'Potter' when I was 9 or 10, and I liked that I could design my own major if I wanted to, and I could take independent studies if I wanted to on subjects that weren't necessarily in the curriculum. I did an independent study on the psychology and philosophy of how and why we fall in love, which was awesome."
Continue reading: Emma Watson Plans On Returning To Brown University In Fall 2013
Eva Longoria suffered a wardrobe malfunction on Saturday and made sure not to repeat it the following evening.
Eva Longoria suffered a wardrobe malfunction at the Cannes Film Festival on Saturday (May 18, 2013) though managed to have a pretty good laugh about the whole thing. The former Desperate Housewives actress stepped onto the red-carpet for the premiere of Jimmy P. Psychotherapy of a Plains Indians and accidentally flashed too much skin for waiting fans and photographers.
The 38-year-old had tugged up the bottom of her sea foam green Atelier Versace gown in order to avoid tripping while climbing the stairs of the theater. Unfortunately for Longoria, she was sans underwear and exposed her bottom half. The embarrassed actress quickly noticed mistake and pulled herself together to pose for photographs. She laughed off the incident the following night, "Here's my dress for tonight!" she wrote, alongside a photo of herself in a black gown. "No wardrobe malfunctions tonight!"
Everything Seemed To Be Going Swimmingly For Eva Longoria At Cannes, Until She Reached The Dreaded Stairs
Continue reading: Eva Longoria's Wardrobe Malfunction Draws Laughs At Cannes Film Festival
The seriously good tracklist was released this week, with the album coming out shortly before the film.
Sofia Coppola’s upcoming film The Bling Ring is one of the summers most exciting prospects in cinema, and with it's release date fast approaching movie execs at Paramount have released the playlist for the movie's official soundtrack. Oh yeah, and did we mention that the soundtrack is ridiculously good?
The line-up features a veritable who's who of contemporary modern music, with 2 Chainz, Rick Ross, Sleigh Bells, Phoenix, Frank Ocean, Azealia Bank, M.I.A. and Kanye West, and if that wasn't good enough then there's even some krautrock brought into the mix, including Klaus Schulze and Can. The only problem with this major line-up is now we're not sure what we're looking forward to the most, the movie itself or the soundtrack (who are we kidding, its obviously THAT scene with Emma Watson in the nightclub that everyone is looking forward to the most).
Watch the Bling Ring Trailer!
On top of the glittering line-up on the soundtrack, Coppola has also hooked up with Daniel Lopatin (aka Oneohtrix Point Never) to score the film; so expect an exciting electronic undercurrent to accompany the a-list soundtrack (which also features a track from Lopatin). In case you're wondering how all these great act will fit into a movie about a group of young criminal stealing from the rich and famous of Los Angeles the you need only to check out the song names, all of which are very fitting for the theme of the movie.
Continue reading: 'The Bling Ring' Soundtrack Might Actually Be Better Than The Film
When actor James Franco threw a party for his fellow movie stars including the star-studded cast of 'Knocked Up' and several stars of Seth Rogen's comedies including Seth himself, Jay Baruchel, Jason Segel, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Danny McBride, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse, no-one expected it to be anything more than your average drink fuelled Hollywood superparty. However, things take a turn for the worst when they experience a major earthquake; the ground opens up to the hottest depths of the Earth's core swallowing up Rihanna and Jason Segal as mysterious beasts start swarming around outside. What's a comedy cast to do with limited food and no real skills of the like they portray in the movies - especially when golden girl Emma Watson bursts in on them wielding an axe demanding all their resources. This is Hollywood versus the apocalypse, but who would really win?
Continue: This Is The End Trailer
Lily James has seemingly come from nowhere to land one of the biggest roles in Hollywood.
The Downton Abbey actress Lily James has landed the role of Cinderella in Disney's live-action retelling of the classic Brothers Grimm fairy-tale, reports Variety. Kenneth Branagh will direct the project, based on a script by Chris Weitz. Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett co-stars as the evil stepmother.
James is a name that's hardly been mentioned throughout the casting process, with Disney originally offering the role to Harry Potter star Emma Watson. On that occasion - Variety's Marc Graser (who broke news of Lily James' casting) - reported how negotiations had broken down, with Watson instead choosing to focus on Guillermo del Toro's planned Beauty and the Beast movie, over at Warner Bros. The film is still in development at the studio, though there's no production start date or release date yet.
Lily James began her career in several notable theatre roles, including alongside Dominic West in a production of Othello at the Crucible in Sheffield. She went onto star in Vernon God Little at the Young Vic Theatre. She landed a movie roles in Noel Clarke's 2012 film Fast Girls about a group of young female athletes competing in the World Championships before appearing in Wrath of the Titans, alongside Rosamund Pike, Sam Worthington and Liam Neeson. Her television credits include Secret Diary of a Call Girl and season three of Downton Abbey.
Is it folly to suggest The Bling Ring could be a contender for the major awards this year?
The alarm bells started ringing when Sofia Coppola, the director of Lost in Translation and Somewhere, announced she would be adapting the story of a group of internet savvy Los Angeles burglars for the big-screen. Just as David Fincher's Facebook tale The Social Network vied for the top awards at the Oscars and Golden Globes, the idea of Coppola's The Bling Ring seemed likely to chime with the social media generation, and a new wave of younger Academy voters.
Unsurprisingly, the Cannes Film Festival welcomed Coppola and her new movie with open arms for this year's event, where it will make its worldwide premiere. That said, should The Bling Ring pull in nominations for this year's awards season, it would represent a very different type of awards' success story. Firstly, its lead actress Emma Watson is hardly an awards' magnet, having really only starred in the Harry Potter franchise and a couple of lightweight dramas. Secondly, it features appearances from the likes of Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan in its examination of America's obsession with celebrity culture and the A-list mecca that is Los Angeles. Though we could imagine it scoring nods for the Globes, it would be a massive feat should The Bling Ring compete at the Oscars. However, it does have one thing in its favour: the director.
Emma Watson [L] and Paris Hilton [R] Both Appear In Sofia Coppola's 'The Bling Ring'
Continue reading: Can 'The Bling Ring' Compete For Movie Gold During Awards Season?
Sofia Coppola's The Bling Ring will open the Un Certain Regard section of the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.
A still from Sofia Coppola's The Bling Ring
A new extended trailer for The Bling Ring - Sofia's Coppola's tale of youthful debauchery in the social media generation - has hit the web. It centers on the true story of a group of Los Angeles kids who used the internet to track their favorite celebrities and subsequently rob their homes when the A-listers were out of town. The teaser trailer gave us the first look at Emma Watson as the ringleader (based on Alexis Neiers), though the new clip offers an insight into her back story, home life and rationale for the thefts.
A movie from the same director as Lost In Translation and the slick Somewhere (also the sister of Moonrise Kingdom writer Roman Coppola) was always going to look good on-screen and the Bling Ring doesn't appear to disappoint. Essentially, the movie tells the story of America's addiction to celebrity culture and the Facebook, Google Maps and social media elements will no doubt appeal to those who enjoyed David Fincher's The Social Network and, perhaps, Harmony Korine's recent Spring Breakers. Something we didn't anticipate is Coppola's use of humor in the The Bling Ring, particularly from Watson's Nikki and Katie Chang's Rebecca. The trailer ends with one of the thieves asking a cop what Lindsay Lohan's reaction was to her stuff being taken. Another nice touch is the cameo of Paris Hilton, a real life victim of 'The Bling Ring.'
A group of teenagers become bored of their everyday lives while everyone around them enjoys their glitzy lifestyles in LA. In an attempt to become like the celebrities they idolise, they track down their glamorous houses online and plan robberies while working out when they are away for premieres and award ceremonies and such. Discovering a world of designer clothing, expensive jewellery, Rolex watches and wads of cash lying around becomes more than a temptation and the teenagers embark on an addictive routine raid of several celebrity homes with victims among the likes of Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom and Lindsay Lohan. At first they appear to be getting away with their exploits, but it isn't long before they are found out and arrested and they learn that they must face up to the consequences of their crimes.
Continue: The Bling Ring Trailer
Emma Watson poses as her 'Bling Ring' character in the latest issue of GQ magazine.
Emma Watson appears in arguably her most provocative photo-shoot yet, in the latest issue of Britain's GQ magazine. The 22-year-old - who stars in Sofia Coppola's The Bling Ring - wears a revealing cut-out dress for the cover image, similar to that worn by Julia Roberts in her classic 1990 movie Pretty Woman.
Dressed as her character Nikki in The Bling Ring, Watson pulls down the dress even further to reveal a tattoo on her hip. She also reveals ink on her left wrist and clutches an iced coffee as she stares down the camera lens. Watson - still best known for her turn as Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies - plays a young L.A. thief in the new movie, which sparked plenty of buzz at film festivals. "When I read the script and I realised that essentially it was a meditation on fame and what it's become to our society, I had to do it," she said in the accompanying interview with GQ, adding, "The character is everything that I felt strongly against - she's superficial, materialistic, vain, amoral. She's all of these things and I realised that I hated her. How do you play someone you hate? But I found it really interesting and it gave me a whole new insight into what my job or my role as an actress could be."
The movie is based on the true story of the 'Bling Ring' or 'The Hollywood Hills Burglar Bunch', who were finally arrested in 2009 after a string of break-ins at the homes of famous including Orlando Bloom and Paris Hilton. The gang stole expensive jewellery and clothes while the celebrities were out of town, or attending events in Los Angeles.
Continue reading: Emma Watson Wears Provocative 'Cut Out' Dress In GQ Cover Shoot
Emma Watson's waxwork was unveiled at Madame Tussauds this week, five years after Daniel Radcliffe's replica took its place at the London attraction.
Emma Watson finally took her permanent place at Madame Tussauds this week, in waxwork form of course. A replica unveiled at the museum shows the 22-year-old Harry Potter actress sitting cross-legged on a chaise lounge, allowing fans to sit next to her and have their photos taken, reports the Express.
There was some speculation as to which outfit Watson would be wearing in her waxwork, and the designers opted for the subtle midnight blue Elie Saab dress that Watson wore to a red carpet event in Hong Kong back in 2011. Her brunette hair is pulled back into a beehive and the actress sports a cocktail ring on her left hand.
"Emma is the perfect addition and we're very lucky to add her to our A-list line-up," said Nicole Fenner of Madame Tussauds, "She's a true English rose, known and loved by millions of film and fashion fans around the world."
Continue reading: Emma Watson Wears Eli Saab In Madame Tussauds Waxwork (Pictures)
Emma Watson plays down the rumours linking her with 50 Shades... adaption, hopefully for the last time.
Emma Watson has hopefully put any speculation linking her with the upcoming adaption of 50 Shades of Grey to rest once and for all following a weekend Twitter rant when she addressed the rumours once again to maintain her distance from the project. This Sunday (March 17) the current golden girl of British cinema posted the relatively obvious question "Who here actually thinks I would do 50 Shades of Grey as a movie?" on to her Twitter timeline and whilst her part in a smutty movie like 50 Shades of Grey would answer the prayers of many, she does make a very valid point in asking that question.
Emma Watson will definitely NOT be starring in the 50 Shades adaptation
The Perks of Being A Wallflower star has been rumoured to be taking on the role of Anastasia Steele from EL James' bestselling erotica novel since it was announced that Universal Pictures and Focus Features bought the rights for the project in March last year. Regardless of the fact that Watson has consistently denied any participation in the project, her name has been heavily linked to the work-in-progress for the last 12 months and her name became even more regularly discussed with 50 Shades last week, when hacking collective Anonymous claimed to have obtained a studio document stating that Watson is attached to star in the film. Following her initial question, Watson's follow-up post was simply a singular question mark, followed by a 15 hour break before she returned to the site to post: "Good. Well that's that sorted then." Hopefully so Emma!
Harry Potter star sick of the rumours
Emma Watson’s having a really hard time shaking off the persistent rumours that it will be her who plays the female lead in the forthcoming film adaptation of E.L. James multi-million selling soft-erotic novel 50 Shades Of Grey.
She’s said she’s not going to be doing it before, but nevertheless reports have continued to link the former Harry Potter actress to the role. Clearly at her wits end, Watson took to Twitter to ask her fans “Who here actually thinks I would do 50 Shades of Grey as a movie? Like really. For real. In real life.” After a series of replies that suggested her participation in the film might not be best advised, she followed it up by writing “Good. Well that’s that sorted then.”
According to The Independent, rumours surrounding Watson’s involvement have intensified after celebrity hackers Anonymous managed to break into the database of German film studio Constantin, who are producing the film, and allegedly found files that suggested that Watson had been attached to appear in it, as Christian Grey’s main love interest Anastasia Steele. However she’s among a number of names who have been linked to the role – many of whom have also flat out denied they’re doing. Back in December Keira Knightley told MTV “You know, I normally don’t like to give a definite about anything [but] I can definitely say [my next film] will not be Fifty Shades of Grey.”
Continue reading: Emma Watson Again Refutes 50 Shades Of Grey Film Rumours On Twitter
It's been a rough week for Justin Bieber, though arguably a tougher couple of days for Ashton Kutcher, Jay-Z and company, who found their bank details leaked all over the internet.
Bieber Blues: What is happening to Justin Bieber? The former loveable scamp appears to have become a target for the tabloids, especially the British ones. He endured a torrid time in London before cancelling a show in Portugal, apparently owing to poor ticket sales. Is this a crisis?
Credit Check: Ever wondered how much Ashton Kutcher has in the bank? How about Jay-Z, Mel Gibson, Hillary Clinton, Arnold Schwarzenegger or even Joe Biden. Well, one hacker - seemingly based in Russia - has posted the financial details of the world's biggest stars onto a hastily made website. Some of the numbers are big. Huge, in fact.
Emma Watson has passed on Disney's big-budget Cinderella.
Last month, Variety's Marc Graser reported that former Harry Potter actress Watson was in early talks to join the project, which stars Cate Blanchett and boasts a crew including 'Devil Wears Prada's Aline Brosh on script duty and Twilight's Chris Weitz on rewrites. The movie is planned to begin shooting in London this fall, though the entire project has been dealt a serious blow with news that Watson - the studio's first choice for Cinderella - has passed.
It's probably a wise decision by Watson, who is slowly but surely moving away from family movies in a bid to be considered a serious actress. This year, she'll be seen in Darren Aronofsky's historical-epic Noah, with Russell Crowe, and plays a teenage thief in Sofia Coppola's 'The Bling Ring.' She also stars in Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen's This Is The End.
Continue reading: Slipper Didn't Fit: Emma Watson Passes On Disney's 'Cinderella'
The Bling Ring trailer shows Emma Watson in her most ambitious role yet.
In perhaps her biggest departure from Hermione Granger and Harry Potter yet, Emma Watson stars as a teenage Los Angeles thief in Sofia Coppola's 'The Bling Ring.' The actress appears to be following the likes of Kristen Stewart and Selena Gomez and moving from family friends roles to provocative parts, and Coppola's movie is certainly controversial.
As the trailer explains, the plot is based on real events and follows a group of fame-obsessed internet savvy teenagers who went on a burgling spree of celebrity houses across Los Angeles in 2008 and 2009. Making headline news at the time, the fashionable crew hauled around $3 million in cash and valuables, largely from Paris Hilton's house, though also from pads owned by the likes of Orlando Bloom, Megan Fox and Lindsay Lohan. Ultimately, they knew when the A-listers were keeping up appearances in Hollywood, New York etc and consequently targeted their homes. Reality star and heiress Paris Hilton actually has a cameo as herself in Coppola's movie.
Continue reading: Emma Watson Robs Paris Hilton And Co In 'The Bling Ring' (Trailer)
Fame and fortune are attractive prospects for most people, but to one group of teenagers living in LA, it has become an obsession. Using the internet to track the whereabouts of the most stylish Hollywood icons, the adolescent crime group known as the Bling Ring repeatedly raid their homes while they're away helping themselves to everything from Rolex watches, jewellery, expensive designer clothes and wads of cash. Among their usual victims are Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom and Rachel Bilson. While they get away with their crimes long enough to enjoy their loot for several months, it takes them being caught red-handed to fully understand the seriousness of their crimes and the consequences of their unashamed quest to imitate their style icons.
Continue: Bling Ring - Teaser Trailer
Former Harry Potter star Emma Watson in talks with Disney over Cinderalla movie
The former Harry Potter star Emma Watson is reportedly in early talks to play Cinderella in a new live-action Disney movie. Variety have reported that Kenneth Branagh is likely to direct the new movie, with Cate Blanchett on board as the wicked stepmother.
Watson wasn’t the first to be considered for the role, though. Disney aren’t commenting on the British actress’ possible involvement but there were at least three other young hopefuls in line for the role, including Imogen Poots (Need For Speed), Alicia Vikander (Anna Karenina) and Gabriella Wilde (The Three Musketeers). Neither of these could be pinned down to the role, because of other commitments and scheduling difficulties. Since the Harry Potter franchise ended, Watson – along with her co-star Daniel Radcliffe – has been working hard to ensure that she manages to make a career break away from being stereotyped as a Hermione-style character. Her performance in The Perks of Being a Wallflower was well-received and she will shortly be appearing in Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s comedy 'This Is The End.'
Continue reading: Fetch The Glass Slipper: Emma Watson Could Be Disney's New Cinderella
It seems to have become popular among red carpet goers to display a generous amount of what has been dubbed as 'side-boob'. Inspired by this, we have decided to come up with our top ten revealing celebrities, assessing who we think definitely has too much on show, and who is teetering on the edge of a serious wardrobe malfunction while still managing to look elegant all the same.
The end is nigh! Well, it isn't really, but if it were then the new trailer for the upcoming Seth Rogan and James Franco staring comedy This Is The End probably leads the way in acceptable ways to see out the end of days.
The new clip sees the pair inside 'real-life' Franco's bunker, presenting the trailer for the film which we will all unfortunately miss, because it comes out next summer (we wont really miss it though of course). The two spend the last night on the world as we know it playing with a gun, masturbating, engaging in a 'sword-fight,' fighting over weed and eventually spooning before bed - what else would you want to do.
After the brilliant into, we're treated to an all new, red banded trailer of the actual film about the end of the Earth, which just so happens to be as funny as the beginning. As well as the Pineapple Express, there's a host of other big names set to star in the upcoming film, including: Danny McBride, Jonah Hill, Jay Baruchel and Craig Robinson, as well as a few cameos from the likes of Emma Watson to name but one, each playing an exaggerated (maybe) version of themselves.
Yes, photos prove that Russell Crowe has got old and fat since the break down of his marriage. However, his altered appearance isn't due to the emotional strife he has been enduring over the past few months, and instead is in aid of his new movie Noah, in which he plays mankind's saviour amid the Biblical flood.
The Gladiator has been snapped with a long grey beared and a spare wheel or two around his waist, on set of Dan Aronofsky's upcoming ambitious movie based on Noah, as he builds the ark, and attempts to save two of every species on Earth. Ray Winston, Emma Watson and Jennifer Connelly will be starring alongside Crowe, as part of the $78m budgeted epic. This update of one of the best loved stories of the Bible is to be set in a more contemporary era, and will be released in 2014, reports the Daily Mail.
Acknowledging the alteration in appearance, Crowe made light of it in a tweet 'The beard will be gone mid November so, no, I'm not booking Christmas shows #missedopportunity.' Although the star has gained a few pounds he has nevertheless kept up an intense work-out regime, and is generally keeping himself very, very busy since he filed for divorce. The pair's 9 year marriage simply couldn't handle the Hollywood pressure, as once source told the Daily Mail "a showbusiness marriage should still be a two-way street and he has been less behind her career than she has been behind his."
Emma Watson has revealed that she was left 'screaming in fear' after she was ambushed by a stalker whilst on set of a new film in the US recently.
The Perks of Being A Wallflower star was filming scenes for a new film on Long Island, New York, when a mystery man jump at her from the bushes and tried to hand her a letter. The actress immediately recognised the assailant as somebody who had stalked her in the past and the star immediately began to scream when she saw his familiar face, fearing the worse for her safety.
A source told the Daily Mirror that the alleged stalker had managed to find his way on to the set where the actress was filming whilst visiting with a group of guests invited on the set. However the man soon disbanded from the group and began to zone in on Watson, eventually finding his target, as she was alone after finishing a scene.
Continue reading: Emma Watson Left 'Screaming In Fear' After Stalker Ambush
Spikier than the average coming-of-age movie, this astute comedy-drama is packed with memorable characters and resonant situations. It's also strikingly intelligent, refusing to accept Hollywood's fake moralising as it grapples with big issues from mental health to bullying. And even better, it's funny and sexy.
Set in the early 1990s, it's the story of the painfully shy Charlie (Lerman), who plans to blend into the background as he starts high school. Scarred by an emotional event in his past, the only new friend he makes is his English teacher (Rudd). Then his sharp wit is spotted by the colourful Patrick (Miller), an anarchic gay teen who doesn't care what people think. Patrick also has a sexy stepsister, Sam (Watson), who takes a liking to Charlie as well, and soon they become inseparable friends. Well, until Charlie loses his nerve to ask Sam out and ends up in a relationship with her friend Mary Elizabeth (Whitman) instead.
After some less-than-thrilling lead roles (such as Percy Jackson or last year's Three Musketeers remake), Lerman finally comes into his own here with a sensitive, intelligent performance that's nicely underplayed. He also has terrific chemistry with Watson and Miller, whose feisty, hilarious love of life fills every scene they're in. They make such a strong trio that we are deeply moved by each rocky shift in their friendship. And Whitman brings a sparky energy to her scenes as the Buddhist punk with a bracingly honest approach to whatever happens.
Continue reading: The Perks Of Being A Wallflower Review
Emma Watson has admitted the relief she now feels having finished filming the long running Harry Potter film franchise, admitting to The Telegraph newspaper that she enjoyed being on the set of her new film, The Perks of Being A Wallflower due to the fact that she could “experience everything I missed growing up.”
She told the paper that, having spent much of the last decade film her role as Heroine Granger, working on the new film gave her the chance to let her hair down a little and enjoy herself. She went on to admit that she isn’t quite sure “how we got away with [doing] as much as we did” in-between filming scenes for the new film, as she was involved with any number of disruptive activities whilst off set.
With all the cast for Wallflower sharing one floor of a hotel, she admitted that she and co-star Ezra Miller opened the doors in between their rooms in a bid to turn the ground floor of the hotel into something not to dissimilar to a hippy commune.
Continue reading: Emma Watson And Ezra Miller’s Hippy Commune Hotel?
Charlie is a 15-year-old high school freshman with no friends since his best friend Michael committed suicide. He is determined to turn his average life around and become someone people notice. He succeeds, at least, in making friends with two seniors; Sam and her extremely effeminate stepbrother Patrick; who let him into their lives and try to show him a good time. He also warms to his English teacher, Bill, who regularly lends him literary texts to read and absorb. Soon, his relationship with Sam gets stronger and Charlie begins to develop feelings for her that he's never before experienced. His new found friends stand by him through high school as he comes to terms with the death of his friend, his mental illness and with who he is as a person.
Continue: The Perks Of Being A Wallflower Trailer
Daniel Radcliffe explains the occasional arguments he had with his co-star, Emma Watson, during filming of the Harry Potter franchise.
Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe admitted in a recent interview that he co-star and Emma Watson used to get into huge arguments on the set during filming, sometimes causing the pair to refuse to talk to each other for days on end. Radcliffe spoke about how their differing points of view usually began to debate simple topics which eventually spiralled into something altogether more dramatic.
During an interview with Britain's Radio Times, Radcliffe explained, "Oh, God. We used to argue about everything. Religion. Politics. I remember one of the big arguments we had on the fourth film - we didn't speak to each other for a couple of days - was about... She was arguing about the Latin language, that nobody knows what it sounds like, what a Latin accent should be. And I was like, 'Yeah, but it's still spoken a lot in the Catholic church.'
Continue reading: Daniel Radcliffe Clashed With Emma Watson On Potter Set
At age 23, Colin (Redmayne) is struggling to break into the movie business, camping out at the production offices of Laurence Olivier (Branagh), who is just about to start filming the 1957 comedy The Prince and the Showgirl with Marilyn Monroe (Williams). While Marilyn's diva behaviour and strict acting coach (Wanamaker) enrage Laurence, he can't deny that when she gets it right, she's magic. Meanwhile, Colin is assigned to help Marilyn make it through the shoot. And of course he can't help falling for her.
Continue reading: My Week With Marilyn Review
Colin Clark is an aspiring film maker and his first job upon leaving university is the role of assistant on a new film, called The Prince and The Showgirl. It stars a young Laurence Olivier and Marilyn Monroe, the blonde bombshell who shocks with her implications that she sleeps in the nude.
Continue: My Week With Marilyn Trailer
Harry Potter and his friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, continue their search for Voldemort's Horcruxes - dark magical objects that help the user gain immortality. Having found and destroyed one Horcrux - a locket belonging to Hogwarts founder Salazar Slytherin - the three friends travel from Ron's older brother Bill Weasley's house by the sea to the wizarding bank, Gringotts and then to Hogwarts to look for the final remaining Horcruxes.
It's gotten to the point where the quality of the films don't really matter: Now I feel like I'm committed to the whole Harry Potter series. I've reviewed the first five now, so by golly, I'm going to stick it out and finish the lot... even though I still can't bring myself to read any of the books. As always, consider yourself warned that I don't know the intricate backstory developed over thousands of pages in J.K. Rowling's writing. And really, I'm happy to keep it that way.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix continues in the tradition of following another year at the Hogwarts School of Wizardry, where Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) has faced nothing but grueling struggle after grueling struggle. His most recent year (Goblet of Fire) saw a friend get killed by his nemesis, the evil Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes), who's gaining more power every day and giving Harry severe nightmares. With few exceptions, his friends have largely abandoned him, and the new term comes with even more headaches in the form of Dolores Umbridge (the perfect Imelda Staunton), sent from the Ministry of Magic to teach the defense from the dark arts class and eventually taking over the school as an iron-fisted, fun-crushing bureaucrat.
After much pottering about (ha ha!), the film finally finds its groove as Umbridge goes too far, refusing to teach magic in the classroom, instead preferring to rely on theoretical knowledge so the students can pass their year-end standardized tests. With Voldemort approaching (this guy is always just around the corner), Harry becomes more nervous that he will be unable to defend himself, finally recruiting a handful of students to his cause to teach them what he knows about magical combat. Together they prepare for the day when they know they'll have to use those skills. (In case you haven't seen any of the first four movies, rest assured it isn't far off: This end-of-movie showdown between Harry and the forces of evil has almost become a cliché that pans out every single time.)
Continue reading: Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix Review
Welcome back, Potter.
The beloved Harry Potter returns to screens, a scant year after his most debut, with the film version of book two in the unfathomably popular Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Unfortunately, while the Potter-obsessed will likely find few faults with the film, this sequel captures much less of the original's magic. (And while I've not read the books, I understand the same can be said for the second novel as well.)
Secrets finds Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) back at home with his Muggle family on summer vacation, locked in his room (though no longer under the stairs). Before long, Harry is set to return to Hogwarts -- despite the insistence from his uncle that he is no longer allowed to study magic. But a daring prison break, courtesy of the Weasley family -- including Harry's best bud Ron (Rupert Grint), gets Harry back to school, despite the meddling of a Yoda-like "house elf" named Dobby (very obvious CG). The masochistic Dobby tries to convince Harry that his life is in danger if he returns to Hogwarts -- though in reality his life appears more in danger due to Dobby's "helpful" meddling.
Harry of course does return to Hogwarts, where all his familiar experiences await him. Hermione (Emma Watson) is still the class brain. Hagrid (Robbie Coltrane) is still the school clown. Snape (Alan Rickman) is still Snape. The new additions to the cast include a new Dark Arts professor, Gilderoy Lockhart (Kenneth Branagh), a narcissistic wizard with questionable ability, as well as the father of Harry's platinum blonde archrival Malfoy, Lucius (Jason Isaacs).
While the cast is still in fine form (the exception being a shockingly haggard Richard Harris as headmaster Dumbledore; Harris died a few weeks before the film's release), it's the story that is decidedly lacking in this episode. The titular Chamber of Secrets is a legendary room inside Hogwarts fabled to hold a menacing creature. It can only be opened, we're told, by an heir to the Slytherin family. When a mysterious message appears on the Hogwarts walls in blood, Harry begins hearing hissing voices, and students begin to turn up paralyzed. It appears the Chamber of Secrets has been opened -- and suspicions fall on Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton) as the heir. Or is it Harry?
What follows is another nearly-three hours of exposition as Harry, Ron, and Hermione attempt to crack this riddle, Nancy Drew-style, while the body count at Hogwarts keeps rising. Mercilessly padded, the movie drags us through ages of all-too-familiar territory: a Quidditch match ends predictably; spells go awry; the trio works on a potion together; one-note characters appear only to say their line and soon exit the story. Finally, invariably first-on-the-scene Harry coincidentally discovers a blank diary -- it's amazing how much coincidence drives the plot -- that leads him on a circuitous path to discover the Chamber, just in time for a final showdown with what looks astonishingly like a miniature-golf hazard.
Jeez, I'm bored just writing about it. So much of Secrets is so unnecessary that my audience was way ahead of the circuitous yet ultimately very simplistic story. Kids spent the three hours running up and down the aisles -- only their parents had the fortitude to stay with the plot. That said, this installment is much funnier than the original, and it has a bit more of a grown-up sentiment to it. Still, it's going to take more than an ominous voice in the walls and a flying car to keep even the most patient adults interested in a three-hour movie.
Chamber of Secrets is enjoyable for many of its stretches, and it's unfortunate that director Chris Columbus (giving up the reins for episode 3) didn't take more chances with the source material, excising the many irrelevant parts and adding in a bit of his own vision. As such, we have a movie that plays out in fits and starts of fun alternating with boredom. Sad to say, the kids will probably want to leave midway through this one and ask you to replay the original on DVD when you get home. Poor Harry, when we see you again (in two years' time), I hope you'll have regained a bit of your magic.
As with Potter #1, the film comes to DVD in an exhaustive and impressive two-disc package, headlined by one of the most aggressive 6.1 channel audio tracks I've ever had the privilege to hear on DVD. This film thankfully makes it much easier to find the deleted/extended scenes, all of which are well worth checking out and add a bit of depth and flavor to an otherwise so-so movie. There are also tons of games for the kids and a few interviews for the adults, including one with J.K. Rowling.
Try putting right down the middle of the course.
In his second big-screen outing, adolescent wizard Harry Potter is blessed with enough cinematic magic to overcome several of the very same problems that left last year's "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" feeling a little protracted and rambling.
Sure "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" spends twice as much screen time on atmosphere and adventure scenes than on plot and character. But this time around every episode seems relevant, which is a vast improvement over last year's film, bloated as it was with Quidditch matches and monster moments that didn't advance the plot one iota.
Returning director Chris Columbus retains the enchanted ambiance as Harry heads to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for his second year of instruction in the black arts. But nothing is ever easy for our young hero, as unseen forces seem to be conspiring against him -- not the least of which is some kind of elusive beast that's loose in Hogwarts' halls, turning students to stone.
Continue reading: Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets Review
Harry Potter is growing up, and so is his movie franchise.Under the tutelage of a new director -- Alfonso Cuarón, known for both children's fare (the 1995 remake of "A Little Princess") and an edgy, insightfully soulful, sex-charged teen road-trip flick ("Y Tu Mama, Tambien") -- the boy wizard has graduated from the world of kiddie movie spectacles with tie-in toys.
"Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" is a film in which depth of character, cunning humor and hair-raising chills come shining through the visual blitzkrieg of special effects -- which are also magnificently improved over the series first two installments. Case in point: a half-horse, half-eagle creature called a Hippogriff that gives "Lord of the Rings'" Gollum a run for his money as the most life-like CGI creation in cinema history.
Beyond just its detailed feathers (which fluff when it shakes) or its golden eyes (which bore holes in the screen with obstinate personality), this winged equine's every movement, from its canter to its peck, is a studied yet natural, amazingly fluid amalgam of the two beasts that were combined to create it.
Continue reading: Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban Review
Overly self-indulgent director Chris Columbus could have cut out the entire middle hour of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" and if you hadn't read the popular children's book, you'd never know the difference.
A good 70 percent of the picture consists of showy set pieces that don't service the plot (which we'll get to in a minute) so much as obligingly recreate unrelated passages that would be missed by the boy wizard's enthusiastic and possessive fan base had they been omitted.
One 10-minute episode is spent watching a sport called Quidditch, sort of a flying-broom version of field hockey with more than one puck and incredibly intricate rules that go largely unexplained. It's a lot like the pod race scene in "The Phantom Menace" -- irrelevant but spirited -- although with 1/10th the special effects budget. (Oh, that blatant blue-screening!)
Continue reading: Harry Potter & The Sorcerer's Stone Review
Date of birth
15th April, 1990
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