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Posts Tagged ‘Duncan Jones’

Source Code – On set photos from Duncan Jones’ new sci-fi

Posted by LiveFor on April 15, 2010


Another sci-fi film from Mr Jones (Moon). These don’t really show any of the sci-fi elements in Source Code, but we do get to see Jake Gyllenhaal and Michelle Monaghan (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) on set.

This is the film centered on a soldier who wakes up in the body of a commuter who witnesses a train explosion.

Jake plays the soldier who gets put into the place of someone on the train and has to keep going back to determine what happened.

Does sound intriguing and looking forward to seeing some footage from it.

More pics on Before the Trailer via io9.

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All You Need Is Kill – Groundhog Day meets Starship Troopers

Posted by LiveFor on April 6, 2010

The heading of this post is all you need to know and that knowing equals awesome. What a great sounding concept and an excellent title.

For those who would like to know more, Deadline have the news that Warner Bros paid low-seven figures against for a Dante Harper-scripted adaptation of the Japanese novel by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. It also has an aggressive progress to production clause that will likely get the film before the cameras within 12 months. What that basically means is they didn’t need to pitch the film, but there was no guarantee that it would be made into a film.

The plot of the book goes like this:

There’s one thing worse than dying. It’s coming back to do it again and again . . . When the alien Gitai invade, Keiji Kiriya is just one of many raw recruits shoved into a suit of battle armor and sent out to kill. Keiji dies on the battlefield, only to find himself reborn each morning to fight and die again and again. On the 158th iteration though, he sees something different, something out of place: the female soldier known as the Bitch of War. Is the Bitch the key to Keiji’s escape, or to his final death?

As well as Groundhog Day it also sounds similar to the Duncan Jones film Source Code which is being filmed with Jake Gyllenhaal as a soldier reliving a train bombing over and over to discover the culprit.

I do like the sound of All You Need Is Kill though. Lots of action and as the repetitive days go on the hero becomes a better soldier – basically like the game systems in Dead Rising where everytime you play through you keep what you’ve already earned – and he finds other people in a similar situation to him.

I just hope that it doesn’t turn out that they are all characters in a video game. We’ll have to wait and see.

Anyone read the book? Is it any good? Will it make a good film?
All You Need Is Kill – Amazon.co.uk
All You Need Is Kill – Amazon.com

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Judge Dredd – Duncan Jones has an idea

Posted by LiveFor on March 11, 2010

Duncan Jones, Director of Moon and currently making Source Code with Jake Gyllenhaal has tweeted an idea he has for a Judge Dredd film.

@ManMadeMoon One day, I would love to tell you my idea for a Judge Dredd film… But not yet. :)

@ManMadeMoon Haha! Ok… I’ll give you my tweet version. It’s a Dredd take on the film “Man bites Dog,” & involves Death & the League of Fatties.

Now a film is currently in development based on a scrip by Alex Garland, but no director is attached. If anyone in Hollywood is listening I reckon Mr Jones would be a splendid choice to direct.

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Angelina Jolie to pull a Moon with Cuarón. Wanted 2 is no more

Posted by LiveFor on February 26, 2010

Wanted was a huge success for Universal. A great big messy film that was fun yet flawed, but could have been so much more. Obviously a sequel has been in the running for a while now and Angelina Jolie had been attached (despite what happened to her in the first film).

Now she has pulled out of the Timur Bekmambetovdirected sequel and so the studio have pulled the plug.

What will she do instead? Well she is currently filming The Tourist with Johnny Depp, but acording to Vulture she has signed up for Warner Bros.’ Gravity. This is an intriguing sounding space thriller to be directed by Alfonso Cuarón (Children of Men) from a script he wrote with his 28-year-old son, Jonás.

The reason I mentioned Moon in the title is that, like Sam Rockwell in Duncan Jones lovely piece of sci-fi, Jolie would be alone on-screen for much of the movie, playing the sole surviving human member of a space mission, desperately trying to return home to Earth and her daughter.

/Film also mention Jolie would be playing the daughter, which is again similar to Moon with the main actor playing two parts. If that is true that would suggest the main character has been in suspended animation or travelled at almost light speed and the time dilation doo-dad effect means her daughter has aged.

I never really thought a sequel to Wanted was needed so not too bothered about that. Gravity sounds like a worthy move on Jolie’s part. Will give her a chance to act a bit more and Children of Men was stunning with a great look so Cuarón should make something great with this.

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District 9 writer to make sci-fi film about a rock man being slightly sinister

Posted by LiveFor on February 24, 2010

Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell & Sharlto Copley


Terri Tatchell is the screenwriter of Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 – they’re also a couple which is cool. Terri has been nominated for a Best Adapted Screenplay for this years Oscars. She chatted to io9 about that, Moon and the film she is working on next.

She was disappointed about Sharlto Copley (star of District 9) not being nominated, but also a certain film by Duncan Jones.

I was disappointed about Moon. I loved Moon. I thought Sam Rockwell was amazing in Moon. That one I’m definitely disappointed in. Avatar is definitely dominating everything, and it was an incredible film, very visually so. Star Trek was great. The Hurt Locker. I absolutely loved. That’s not scifi, but that deserves to be up there. I liked the Hurt Locker so much that I got halfway home from the theater and I realized I left my purse in the theater. That’s a compliment, that’s when you know you enjoyed a film. But yes, for science fiction specifically, I have to say I was disappointed Moon wasn’t included.

Her next film she is working on sounds very intriguing and the short she mentions is below.

The film I’m working on now is an adaptation of a short film called Terminus. It’s a bit more science fiction, fantasy. It’s about a stone creature that follows this stressed-out guy around, just stressing him more and more. It was incredibly well received, and the director that created it, [Trevor Cawood] hasn’t done a feature yet, and he’s really talented. I approached him about writing a feature script of that. It’s been a little more challenging than I expected it to be. I’m probably on my second draft now. I’m not ready to send it off yet, but we’ll see.


Not sure how they can turn this into a feature, but I do like the short film.

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BAFTAS 2010: The Winners – The Hurt Locker beat Avatar and Moon did well

Posted by LiveFor on February 21, 2010

Well it looks as if we Brits preferred the exploits of the bomb disposal team in Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker over James Cameron’s Avatar. Bigelow’s film won best film and director, original screenplay, cinematography, as well as editing and sound awards.

Well done to Duncan Jones who won Outstanding Debut (that’s him behind the BAFTA award below).

BEST FILM
* The Hurt Locker
Avatar
An Education
Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire
Up In the Air

OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
* Fish Tank
An Education
In the Loop
Moon
Nowhere Boy

OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
* Duncan Jones – Moon
Lucy Bailey, Andrew Thompson, Elizabeth Morgan Hemlock, David Pearson – Mugabe and the White African
Eran Creevy – Shifty
Stuart Hazeldine – Exam
Sam Taylor_Wood – Nowhere Boy

DIRECTOR
* The Hurt Locker – Kathryn Bigelow
Avatar – James Cameron
District 9 – Neill Blomkamp
An Education – Lone Scherfig
Inglourious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
* The Hurt Locker – Mark Boal
The Hangover – Jon Lucas, Scott Moore
Inglourious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino
A Serious Man – Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Up – Bob Peterson, Pete Docter

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
* Up In the Air – Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner
District 9 – Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell
An Education – Nick Hornby
In the Loop – Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci, Tony Roche
Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire – Geoffrey Fletcher

FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
* A Prophet
Broken Embraces
Coco Before Chanel
Let the Right One In
The White Ribbon

ANIMATED FILM
* Up
Coraline
Fantastic Mr. Fox

LEADING ACTOR
* Colin Firth – A Single Man
Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart
George Clooney – Up In The Air
Jeremy Renner – The Hurt Locker
Andy Serkis – Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll

LEADING ACTRESS
* Carey Mulligan – An Education
Saoirse Ronan – The Lovely Bones
Gabourey Sidibe – Precious: Based On The Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire
Meryl Streep – Julie & Julia
Audrey Tautou – Coco Before Chanel

SUPPORTING ACTOR
* Christoph Waltz – Inglourious Basterds
Alec Baldwin – It’s Complicated
Christian Mckay – Me And Orson Welles
Alfred Molina – An Education
Stanley Tucci – The Lovely Bones

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
* Mo’nique – Precious: Based On The Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire
Anne-Marie Duff – Nowhere Boy
Vera Farmiga – Up In The Air
Anna Kendrick – Up In The Air
Kristin Scott Thomas – Nowhere Boy

ACADEMY FELLOWSHIP
Vanessa Redgrave

OUTSTANDING BRITISH CONTRIBUTION TO CINEMA
Joe Dunton

MUSIC
* Up – Michael Giacchino
Avatar – James Horner
Crazy Heart – T-Bone Burnett, Stephen Bruton
Fantastic Mr. Fox – Alexandre Desplat
Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll – Chaz Jankel

CINEMATOGRAPHY
* The Hurt Locker – Barry Ackroyd
Avatar – Mauro Fiore
District 9 – Trent Opaloch
Inglourious Basterds – Robert Richardson
The Road – Javier Aguirresarobe

EDITING
* The Hurt Locker – Bob Murawski, Chris Innis
Avatar – Stephen Rivkin, John Refoua, James Cameron
District 9 – Julian Clarke
Inglourious Basterds – Sally Menke
Up in the Air – Dana E. Glauberman

PRODUCTION DESIGN
* Avatar – Rick Carter, Robert Stromberg, Kim Sinclair
District 9 – Philip Ivey, Guy Poltgieter
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – Stuart Craig, Stephenie McMillan
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus – Nominees TBC
Inglourious Basterds – David Wasco, Sandy Reynolds Wasco

COSTUME DESIGN
* The Young Victoria – Sandy Powell
Bright Star – Janet Patterson
Coco Before Chanel – Catherine Leterrier
An Education – Odile Dicks-Mireaux
A Single Man – Arianne Phillips

SOUND
* The Hurt Locker – Ray Beckett, Paul N. J. Ottosson, Craig Stauffer
Avatar – Christopher Boyes, Gary Summers, Andy Nelson, Tony Johnson, Addison Teague
District 9 – Nominees TBC
Star Trek – Peter J. Devlin, Andy Nelson, Anna Behlmer, Mark Stoeckinger, Ben Burtt
Up – Tom Myers, Michael Silvers, Michael Semanick

SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
* Avatar – Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham, Andrew R. Jones
District 9 – Dan Kaufman, Peter Muyzers, Robert Habros, Matt Aitken
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – John Richardson, Tim Burke, Tim Alexander, Nicolas Aithadi
The Hurt Locker – Richard Stutsman
Star Trek – Roger Guyett, Russell Earl, Paul Kavanagh, Burt Dalton

MAKEUP & HAIR
* The Young Victoria – Jenny Shircore
Coco Before Chanel – Thi Thanh Tu Nguyen, Jane Milon
An Education – Lizzie Yianni Georgiou
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus – Sarah Monzani
Nine – Peter ‘Swords’ King

ORANGE RISING STAR AWARD
* Kristen Stewart
Jesse Eisenberg
Nicholas Hoult
Carey Mulligan
Tahar Rahim

Do you think the British Academy of Film and Television picked the right winners? Which way do you think the Oscars will go?

Pictures from BAFTA

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Source Code – Jeffrey Wright joins Duncan Jones’ new sci-fi film

Posted by LiveFor on February 18, 2010

Jeffrey Wright (Casino Royale) has joined the cast of the sci-fi thriller Source Code for Summit Entertainment.

Filmmaker Duncan Jones (Moon), who is writing and directing the project, reported the news through his Twitter account.

Jake Gyllenhaal stars as a helicopter pilot who participates in an experimental anti-terrorist Government program which has puts his consciousness in the body of a commuter who witnesses a train bombing. He must relive the incident over and over until he can find those responsible.

Vera Farmiga plays Gyllenhaal’s handler who advises him through his investigations, while Michelle Monaghan is a passenger romantically involved with the man Gyllenhaal’s mind is occupying

Lots of potential in this film and Duncan Jones is getting a great cast together for it.

Source: Dark Horizons

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Moon / Ren & Stimpy mashup

Posted by LiveFor on January 13, 2010

What do you get if Duncan Jones and Sam Rockwell’s Moon meet Ren and Stimpy?

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Source Code – Duncan Jones’ new film gets Vera Farmiga and Michelle Monaghan

Posted by LiveFor on January 13, 2010

UPDATE: First photos are out from the set showing Jake and Michelle – Check them out.

Vera Farmiga (Up In the Air) is in negotiations and Michelle Monaghan (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, MI3, Eagle Eye, Trucker) is set to star opposite Jake Gyllenhaal (Donnie Darko, Brokeback Mountain, Prince of Persia) in the sci-fi thriller Source Code.

Duncan Jones (Moon – check out my interview with him) is directing the picture, which centers on a soldier (Gyllenhaal) who, as part of an experimental government program to investigate a terrorist incident, finds himself in the body of an unknown commuter living and reliving a harrowing train bombing until he can find out who is responsible for it. Every time the bomb goes off he is thrown back to the government base and then goes through it all again.

Kind of like Groundhog Day crossed with a video game, a splash of Doctor Who and a touch of The Matrix. For some reason the fact it is partly set on a train and involves a top secret experiment reminds me of the start of Half-Life and Half-Life 2 although this film is nothing to do with them. Just my mind going off on a tangent.

Farmiga will play a hands-on communications officer controlling Gyllenhaal as he travels through time and space. Monaghan is a woman on the train with whom the man is involved romantically.

The film is due to begin filming in March.

Farmiga has been nominated by the Globes as best supporting actress for her role in Jason Reitman’s Up In the Air opposite George Clooney.

Monaghan recently finished work on Due Date with Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis. She recently won a best actress award form the San Diego Film Critics for her performance in Trucker.

Source Code has quite an interesting premise and the cast is shaping up nicely. Like many people I am itching to see another film by Duncan Jones after the excellent work that was Moon.

Are you looking forward to see what Mr Jones did next?

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2009: The Year of Smart Sci-Fi

Posted by LiveFor on December 16, 2009


By Richard Bodsworth

As 2009 comes to a close the inevitable “reviews of the year “come out to play like The Warriors. I always like to look back, build a list and maybe sadly watch my Top 10 in order. While I was compiling, I noticed that the vast majority of them were Science Fiction films and it dawned on me it has been one Hell of a year for Sci-Fi. Something we were sorely starved of last year with the likes of the wooden wonder boy Keanu Reeves in The Day The Earth Stood Still. So I thought it may be appropriate to have a look at the Sci-Fi films of the year, in what I guess you could call, “2009: The Year of Smart Sci-Fi”

It seems to be universally accepted within the film industry that you can’t make a low budget Science Fiction movie, it’s all got to be about effects, explosions and all that nonsense. Shit, if science was at all like it is in films I might have received a higher grade on my exam at school. However, with his debut feature film, MOON, director Duncan Jones managed to turn that notion on it’s head. Shot on a budget of £2.5m, Moon is a dark, thought provoking modern classic. Making use of retro effect techniques like miniatures, the lunar landscape and the vehicles look as entirely, if not more, authentic than in most films using excessive CGI. But with Moon, the visuals only serve as the backdrop for the psychological core as Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) battles with the idea he may not be alone on the Lunar base. Jones’ direction coupled with the haunting score of Clint Mansell help create a claustrophobic environment not unlike that of Alien. Sam Rockwell’s tour de force performance is one of the best I have seen all year (bearing in mind I have yet to see Clooney’s Up in the Air) and hopefully there is a chance he will be acknowledged by The Academy come February‘s nominations.

Despite having a slightly bigger budget than Moon another debut feature director, Neil Blomkamp, showed you don’t need the net worth of a small country to make great Sci-Fi with the fantastic DISTRICT 9. After an alien spacecraft stops above Johannesburg, South Africa, the malnourished species onboard are given asylum on Earth. After a while some of the extraterrestrials become engaged in criminal activities with some becoming violent. As a result the human public want more control over the new arrivals. The government therefore sets up a secure camp called District 9, and the aliens – derogatorily referred to as “prawns” are sent there. However, crime again begins to spiral out of control and the camp becomes a shanty town. We follow one of the men in charge, Wikus (Sharlto Copley) of relocating the “prawns” to the new District 10. Filmed partially documentary style, the initial set up of showing how the aliens come to land on Earth is simply brilliant. Sharlto Copley’s improvised dialogue, especially during the relocation process, adds to the realism and builds a great character. Not unlike Moon, the film does feature some impressive visual effects but they are put on the back burner (for the first part of the film at least) as Blomkamp weaves the completely believable scenario with the underlying themes of xenophobia and the use of a privatised military. The final act does fall into action packed blockbuster territory but not without the thought provoking build up, all the more poignant by the country in which it is set. Under the watchful eye of Peter Jackson, you really wonder what the producer/director duo’s Halo could have been.

Sadly it seems lately, the best thing to do when times are tough is for big studios not to bother investing large sums of cash into original films and so we are spoon-fed the endless list of, sequels, prequels and reboots. While some are pointless, unoriginal and frankly crap (as I shall mention later), J.J. Abrams take on STAR TREK showed how it should be done. The film benefits immensely from the talented screenwriting combo of Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman. By using the time travel and alternate universe plot, the film is able not to disrupt the continuity set by the previous films and television series. I believe J.J. Abrams best attribute is his ability to pace a film perfectly, he showed this with MI:3 which is personally my favourite of the trilogy. This pacing makes sure we aren’t stuck in the almost boring plot points of an origins story, something Wolverine could have benefited from. Casting of the younger crew was also spot on, no actor overdoing their part and turning it into a parody. Critics may argue that the new film failed to portray the usual themes of the earlier incarnations, but I’m convinced the filmmakers did an excellent job with the amount of stuff they had to fit in as it was a prequel. It is intriguing to see what is next for the Enterprise.

While these were some of the highlights, there were also some spectacular failures this year including the laser blasting bukkake that was Michael Bay’s TRANSFORMERS 2: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN. After praising Orci and Kurtzman for Star Trek, their talents were nowhere to be seen in this loud, overlong, plot less monstrosity. It’s easy to Bay bash so I will stop, even though there is no chance he will because yet again suckers (myself included) queued up, paid the entrance fee, and there will continue to more films like it for years to come.

The daggers were already out before the film was released when McG was announced as director for the 4th Terminator outing in TERMINATOR SALVATION. Minds were momentarily put at ease after some footage was shown and I myself was genuinely excited… then I watched it. Just another plot less action film with too much shooting and not enough character, a high profile and talented cast ultimately wasted. I know some people enjoyed the film, even reading some 4 star reviews but isn’t this always the case? When a film with big expectations is released people think it is instantly great then after consideration and a few years down the line, opinion changes. See the Star Wars prequels, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull etc. It would be nice to see these big budget films concentrate a bit more on story instead of thinking about what can be blown up next.

So what can we expect in 2010’s Sci-Fi bundle? No doubt there will be a few surprises along with a few disappointments, but three films that should be marked on your film calendar include, Nimrod Antal’s PREDATORS. The film written and produced by Robert Rodriguez is apparently a direct sequel to the original 1987 Arnie classic, but that is yet to be confirmed, it is also rumoured the big man himself may even cameo as his original character, Dutch. Starring Adrien Brody, Topher Grace and Danny Trejo there is every chance it could be an ultimate flop, but here’s hoping Rodriguez knows what he’s doing. Cant be any worse than Alien vs. Predator: Requiem anyway.

Probably my most anticipated is Christopher Nolan’s, INCEPTION. The trailer is short, and all we really know about the plot is it‘s “contemporary science fiction action thriller set within the architecture of the mind”. But with a cast including Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Tom Berenger and the legendary Michael Caine how can you not be excited?

Finally at the end of the year TRON LEGACY. The footage already released has been simply breathtaking and word is it has come along way from that.

As you may have noticed, the biggest Sci-Fi film of the year and most probably the decade is not mentioned here. Sadly it has not yet been released. Look out for a separate Avatar review in the next few days.

A great article by Richard. Looking forward to the Avatar piece. Be sure to check out the LFF Review of the Year.

What have been your science fiction highlights and lowlights of the year?

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